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ECON Burnout Nation (Charles Hugh Smith)
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  1. #1
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    Burnout Nation (Charles Hugh Smith)

    Graphics at the link-
    ============

    https://www.oftwominds.com/blogmay19...ation5-19.html

    Burnout Nation
    May 14, 2019

    The economic and financial stresses will exceed the workforce's carrying capacity in the next recession.

    A number of recent surveys reflect a widespread sense of financial stress and symptoms of poor health in America's workers, particularly the younger generations. There's no real mystery as to the cause of this economic anxiety:
    -- competition for secure, well-paid jobs that were once considered the birthright of the middle class is increasingly fierce;
    -- the pay and predictability of the jobs that are available are low;
    -- high-paying jobs are extraordinarily demanding, forcing workers to sacrifice everything else to keep the big-bucks position;
    -- the much-lauded gig economy is tracking the Pareto Distribution, as 80% of the income accrues to the top 20%, and those trying to earn a lower-middle class income in the gig economy are working long hours to do so;
    -- housing costs are unaffordable in hot job markets;
    -- commutes to jobs from lower-cost areas are brutal;
    -- student loan debt taken on to earn low-value diplomas is crushing.

    These are just the highlights, not an exhaustive list of the common stresses experienced by American workers of all ages.
    The inevitable result of these pressures over time is burnout, which anecdotally is reaching epidemic proportions in the U.S. and other nations.

    While many of these stresses are unique to private-sector precariats in the gig economy or insecure positions in Corporate America, many public-sector workers in public safety and healthcare are also prone to burnout due to increasing workloads and understaffing.

    While government agencies and Corporate America recognize the dangers to productivity posed by burnout, few agencies and companies are taking concrete actions to address the sources. Given that many of the sources are systemic, there is only so much agencies and companies can do; but what they can do may make the difference between workers free-falling into total burnout or being able to manage high levels of chronic stress.

    But why should workers tolerate high levels of chronic stress? The alternative--quitting the source of the stress and finding a lower wage, lower pressure livelihood is an increasingly compelling alternative.

    The status quo is purposefully blind to the systemic dangers of burnout because it depends on obedient workers producing wealth, paying taxes and taking on debt to buy more stuff. As I have noted recently, the most productive workers with digital / remote work skills have the most to gain by bailing out of the long commute / overwork / unaffordable housing rat race and establishing a lower-cost, lower stress life elsewhere.

    Push Them Hard Enough and the Productive Class Will Opt Out of Servitude
    Since the high-income workforce pays the lion's share of income and other taxes, a mass exodus of burned out high-productivity workers will cause shortfalls in tax revenues and in creditworthy buyers of overpriced housing in high-stress coastal urban regions.

    Burnout isn't limited to highly paid workers; lower paid workers holding down multiple jobs are carrying enormous burdens of chronic stress.

    The economic and financial stresses will exceed the workforce's carrying capacity in the next recession. In terms of chronic stress and economic insecurity, the recession of 2008-09 never ended for many workers; rather, the burdens have increased and the damage wrought by unrelenting stress is reaching the critical point of failure, where stress cascades into total burnout and the abandonment of jobs not by choice but by necessity.

    Depression, fatigue, burnout and stress are all related, and the plethora of self-help columns aimed at relieving stress don't recognize the systemic burdens placed on workers: rather than tell overworked employees and small business owners they should meditate at 5 am before starting their commute, the entire system needs to be overhauled.
    The wonder of our time isnt how angry we are at politics and politicians; its how little weve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  2. #2
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    I wonder how modern stress compares to the stress of previous generations dealing with growing enough food for a 15 member family with horses and human labor, or surviving a depression or a civil war, or a world war or two? Or shortages of food, or sweeping infections Of killer diseases without modern anti-Biotics. There has always been huge stresses present, but the current crop of people mostly live sedentary lives and have no connection to nature, God, or one another. Plus adulterated food, dumbed down education, dumbed down “entertainment”, and mostly criminals and idiots running the governments. I can’t figure out how we survived this long.
    Watch ye therefore and pray always that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass and to stand before the Son of Man
    Luke 21:36

    COLLAPSE NOW: avoid the rush

  3. #3
    People probably don't handle stress as well when the future looks hopeless to them.

  4. #4
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    See Soph the foullmouthed 14YO grrl with 800K YouTube followers at http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...82#post7284082

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    The wonder of our time isnt how angry we are at politics and politicians; its how little weve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dozdoats View Post
    The status quo is purposefully blind to the systemic dangers of burnout because it depends on obedient workers producing wealth, paying taxes and taking on debt to buy more stuff. As I have noted recently, the most productive workers with digital / remote work skills have the most to gain by bailing out of the long commute / overwork / unaffordable housing rat race and establishing a lower-cost, lower stress life elsewhere.
    Of course, it's not enough to HAVE "digital / remote work skills". You have to actually have places that will ALLOW you to work remotely.

    I've seen it more and more as a writer; publishers and websites literally REFUSE to allow remote working.

  6. #6
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    The whole IT/web/tech job market is saturated AND being diluted with imports.



    Plastics, there's a great future is in plastics.
    Proud Infidel...............and Cracker

    Member: Nowski Brigade

    Deplorable


  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by jed turtle View Post
    I wonder how modern stress compares to the stress of previous generations dealing with growing enough food for a 15 member family with horses and human labor, or surviving a depression or a civil war, or a world war or two? Or shortages of food, or sweeping infections Of killer diseases without modern anti-Biotics. There has always been huge stresses present, but the current crop of people mostly live sedentary lives and have no connection to nature, God, or one another. Plus adulterated food, dumbed down education, dumbed down “entertainment”, and mostly criminals and idiots running the governments. I can’t figure out how we survived this long.
    I do think there is a difference between the past and now. In the past, if there were a drought or crop failure, everyone was screwed. The farmer, the merchant he owed money to for what he bought on credit, the bank who lent the money they had, not what they were allowed to loan on fractional reserve banking.

    Now, the company goes under and the worker loses his/her (yeah, women are liberated and got to join the rat race), the top management gets millions in a golden parachute, and the billionaire get the US Government to help with his losses, they way Trump (and a lot of other smart business people like Amazon today) "loses billions" and gets rich.

    Now the company is at the brink of a stock market crash and a depression. The workers lose their jobs. Those still working get to pick up the slack for those fired and don't get raises because they are "lucky to even have a job," and the bankers get bailed out by the taxpayers. When the taxpayers reps ask the Federal Reserve about money going to foreign banks, they got told to go and...well, I think you get the picture.

    When the lower class gets poorer, the middle class goes deeper into debt for education to try and remain in the middle class, and the people at the top get all that the money lost by the lower and middle class.

    Am I a Commie? Nope. But what I'm describing above, you know it is real. That, in part, is what is allowing Socialism to take hold in America's youth. Most see a party is going on...and they aren't invited, except to clean the bathrooms and pay the bill. That is if the rich haven't brought in a foreigner to clean the bathrooms because Americans want to make too much to clean it.

    So am I Commie? If income gets too concentrated, people will do something drastic like a revolution or Socialism. And I really would like to avoid those from happening.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post

    Am I a Commie? Nope. But what I'm describing above, you know it is real. That, in part, is what is allowing Socialism to take hold in America's youth. Most see a party is going on...and they aren't invited, except to clean the bathrooms and pay the bill. That is if the rich haven't brought in a foreigner to clean the bathrooms because Americans want to make too much to clean it.

    So am I Commie? If income gets too concentrated, people will do something drastic like a revolution or Socialism. And I really would like to avoid those from happening.
    Clearly you are Commie. I know this because I've pointed out the same issues before and been told the exact same thing. Should have been here when I brought up automation last time.

    The problem, of course, is that there's no real way to fix the issues. If "the rich" were going to pay proper wages to keep a middle class going they'd have done it by now. If the government forces them to, that's socialism at least.

    Of course, there's also the possibility that the former middle class can force them to--take your pick of potential methods--but that's not a subject anyone really wants to broach.

  9. #9
    I like and have been following CHS for sometime now.

    I downsized. I know. The shock and horror.
    But I did.
    Walked away from the 6 figure job (it was killing me) and simplified my life.
    And it has been much better since.
    I think if most Americans could or would simplify their lives, do what they can to get away from many of our modern trappings, they might be happier people.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by RDF12 View Post
    I like and have been following CHS for sometime now.

    I downsized. I know. The shock and horror.
    But I did.
    Walked away from the 6 figure job (it was killing me) and simplified my life.
    And it has been much better since.
    I think if most Americans could or would simplify their lives, do what they can to get away from many of our modern trappings, they might be happier people.
    I totally agree.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Millwright View Post
    The whole IT/web/tech job market is saturated AND being diluted with imports.



    Plastics, there's a great future is in plastics.
    Do you mean the credit card biz or sexbots?
    Proud member Alt-Right group "Scientists For Trump". (Smart Americans know he's right.)
    A man should only take a wife whose Bible includes Genesis, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, Colossians, Malachi, Isaiah, Ephesians, Corinthians, Hebrews, Timothy, Titus, Proverbs, Mark, Peter & Revelation. Ecclesiastes 7:28 (NIV) tells him the odds.

  12. #12
    Depression, fatigue, burnout and stress are good for ya. They build character, perseverance, endurance, and self reliance.
    The workers will either be fine or they won't . . . just as it has been for thousands of years.
    Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than a pesky raven?
    It is difficult to stand idly by and watch the vacuum of ignorance being filled with lies

  13. #13
    Work to live, or live to work.....today's debt serf has been forced into the work to live syndrome. Me, I've always been in the work to live category, of my own accord. Times are changing, it's like a third category.

    WE all know people who have no life, and love work more than a home life....so be them. Me, I'm the work to hit the point I don't have to anymore.

    Then I learned about fiat money, and chose not to be in the game. Galt, for sure. Three years running without enough income to pay taxes... yah, I give up the dollars, but not the time. I own my life....on my terms for the most part. Not new to me, having been self employeed for a life time, my terms.

    As to burnout and stress related to in the article...welcome to the job boys and girls....grow some.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Blacknarwhal View Post
    Clearly you are Commie. I know this because I've pointed out the same issues before and been told the exact same thing. Should have been here when I brought up automation last time.

    The problem, of course, is that there's no real way to fix the issues. If "the rich" were going to pay proper wages to keep a middle class going they'd have done it by now. If the government forces them to, that's socialism at least.

    Of course, there's also the possibility that the former middle class can force them to--take your pick of potential methods--but that's not a subject anyone really wants to broach.



    Yep, I'm a Commie. I have Karl Marx jammies, a set of Trotsky tennis shoes that light up the dark when I jump around, and a "I'm with here" bumper sticker. I also confess to having a Hitler Clinton chick dinner for lunch. You know, it is two extra large thighs, two extra small breast, and two left wings. Oh, and if there is no way to figure out a solution to the problem, then we are going to have the young eventually replace us old folks with Socialism. That is, if a revolution doesn't happen first.

    All this kind of reminds me of Central America in the 1980s, with Communist revolutions trying to overthrown "right wing" governments that had concentrated wealth, little freedom, and death squads.

    By the way Blacknarwhal I know that you'll be rejecting your Socialist Security check, when you get it, if you get it, because you are so much against anything Socialist. Oh, and don't forget to reject your Medicare too. You know, the same way that your business would reject government subsidized loans and tax breaks.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
    By the way Blacknarwhal I know that you'll be rejecting your Socialist Security check, when you get it, if you get it, because you are so much against anything Socialist. Oh, and don't forget to reject your Medicare too. You know, the same way that your business would reject government subsidized loans and tax breaks.
    SS and Medicare are mandated by law - BOTH paid into by all those employed - at the "point of a Federal gun." (Whether we liked it, or not)

    Had those same SS/Medicare amounts been properly invested over the last many decades, by each one of us, the monies would have likely multiplied into amounts much larger than the original "investment" amount, likely providing a very nice retirement account/fund, indeed.


    intothegoodnight
    "Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light."

    Dylan Thomas, "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night"

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by intothatgoodnight View Post
    SS and Medicare are mandated by law - BOTH paid into by all those employed - at the "point of a Federal gun." (Whether we liked it, or not)

    Had those same SS/Medicare amounts been properly invested over the last many decades, by each one of us, the monies would have likely multiplied into amounts much larger than the original "investment" amount, likely providing a very nice retirement account/fund, indeed.


    intothegoodnight
    But it is still a Socialist program. And anyone that doesn't toe the "any idea that isn't 100% Capitalism is a Commie" line must be a Communist, right?

    I'm looking for ideas. If we continue to have an increased wealth concentration, we are either going to have the next generation be Socialist, as we are seeing now, or we are going to have a violent revolution. Rather than admit he didn't have any ideas, he called me a Communist. Well, if we are going to be Capitalist purists, we can't have anything to do with Socialist programs, including Social Security, which is Socialism, regardless who paid at gunpoint.

    If anyone has any ideas on how to solve the problem of wealth concentration, I'm curious. If you see the problem and don't see a way out, I can understand as I haven't found an answer either. Well, I haven't found an answer other than a pending revolution or the next generation moving the country to European Socialism, neither of which I look forward to.

  17. #17
    Er... Senitnel? You need to read Blacknarwhal's second sentence... he actually has posted similar questions and thoughts, and got shot down by Dennis (and probably others, but the exchange with Dennis is the one I remember) for daring to say tht we might need laws or SOMETHING to stopthe current trend of workers' pay dropping (in real dollars) whil CEOs and politicians continue to get richer and richer...

    Summerthyme

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
    But it is still a Socialist program. And anyone that doesn't toe the "any idea that isn't 100% Capitalism is a Commie" line must be a Communist, right?

    I'm looking for ideas. If we continue to have an increased wealth concentration, we are either going to have the next generation be Socialist, as we are seeing now, or we are going to have a violent revolution. Rather than admit he didn't have any ideas, he called me a Communist. Well, if we are going to be Capitalist purists, we can't have anything to do with Socialist programs, including Social Security, which is Socialism, regardless who paid at gunpoint.

    If anyone has any ideas on how to solve the problem of wealth concentration, I'm curious. If you see the problem and don't see a way out, I can understand as I haven't found an answer either. Well, I haven't found an answer other than a pending revolution or the next generation moving the country to European Socialism, neither of which I look forward to.
    Fundamentally, we are not in disagreement - I have no specific answers/solutions that don't require a messy and possibly violent eventuality, given the purposefully created divides between subgroups of Americans - the multi-decade handiwork of our overlords, that J6P/many are just beginning to realize.

    There is an old saw, perhaps credited to a Rockefeller - paraphrased, "too much money accumulated in one place is like manure in a pile - it does little good, while causing an attention-grabbing stench - it's best use is when it is regularly spread around onto the larger landscape," or something close to that.


    intothegoodnight
    "Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light."

    Dylan Thomas, "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night"

  19. #19
    Historically when a very few people have almost all the wealth AND the population feel they are getting little in return, revolutions can happen.

    Now, if most people feel they are some value/benefit from the situation it can go on for a long time - The Feudal System comes to mind which lasted for centuries until the Famines and Black Death of the 14th century killed so many people that former serfs could demand real wages and upset the apple cart.

    But for about 700 years there, the basic cultural "ideal" was that the nobility protected the peasants from other warlords and the people in their turn "gave back" a portion of what they raised, over time things slid into a more static situation where the local landowners "owned" their serfs and the ideals met a bit too often with a reality that saw their lives as disposable.

    The events of the 14th century just finished off something that had been brewing for some time, but it was a rather slow revolution; the French Revolution, on the other hand, is what happens when people are suffering a great deal and people get tired of the wealth-getting that far out of whack.

    In general, while no one wants the Black Death as a leveler (or any other plague, famine or natural disaster) a "slow" wind into a different form of social-political organization is usually easier on everyone concerned that the French Revolution type.

    At some point, the electronic toys and cheap processed food won't keep the "peons" happy any longer, that isn't a communist or capitolist issue; it is a very human and historical one.
    expatriate Californian living in rural Ireland with husband, dogs, horses. garden and many, many cats

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by summerthyme View Post
    Er... Senitnel? You need to read Blacknarwhal's second sentence... he actually has posted similar questions and thoughts, and got shot down by Dennis (and probably others, but the exchange with Dennis is the one I remember) for daring to say tht we might need laws or SOMETHING to stopthe current trend of workers' pay dropping (in real dollars) whil CEOs and politicians continue to get richer and richer...

    Summerthyme

    OK, I misread it. Where is that crow? I need to go eat some. Thanks, Symmerthyme. And Blacknarwhal's my apologies.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melodi View Post
    Historically when a very few people have almost all the wealth AND the population feel they are getting little in return, revolutions can happen.

    Now, if most people feel they are some value/benefit from the situation it can go on for a long time - The Feudal System comes to mind which lasted for centuries until the Famines and Black Death of the 14th century killed so many people that former serfs could demand real wages and upset the apple cart.

    But for about 700 years there, the basic cultural "ideal" was that the nobility protected the peasants from other warlords and the people in their turn "gave back" a portion of what they raised, over time things slid into a more static situation where the local landowners "owned" their serfs and the ideals met a bit too often with a reality that saw their lives as disposable.

    The events of the 14th century just finished off something that had been brewing for some time, but it was a rather slow revolution; the French Revolution, on the other hand, is what happens when people are suffering a great deal and people get tired of the wealth-getting that far out of whack.

    In general, while no one wants the Black Death as a leveler (or any other plague, famine or natural disaster) a "slow" wind into a different form of social-political organization is usually easier on everyone concerned that the French Revolution type.

    At some point, the electronic toys and cheap processed food won't keep the "peons" happy any longer, that isn't a communist or capitolist issue; it is a very human and historical one.
    Well said.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
    OK, I misread it. Where is that crow? I need to go eat some. Thanks, Symmerthyme. And Blacknarwhal's my apologies.
    Happens to everybody, man. No harm, no foul.

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