A Temporary Recovery

Economic recovery means many things. One thing can be more hiring opportunities for temporary employees in the U.S.

In the current phase of the business cycle, American employers are increasing their hiring of temporary workers, slowly. The demand for such employment had dropped in the recession of 2001 that followed the stock market slide.

For employers, the basic virtue of temporary employees is their flexibility. What makes them this way is the very tenuous nature of their employment.

Are we talking labor union representation here? Forget about it!

You see temporary workers stay on a payroll for a limited time”three weeks or three months”then they are gone like a fist when you open your palm. This is a wet dream come true for employers when their hiring is subject to the ebbs and flows of their short-term needs.

And the modern business enterprise is all about the short term, thanks to market competition. Long-term business planning is for social malcontents; they put people,s daily needs before business profits.

Such a perspective is positively anti-American. We know how patriotic employers are by the sizes of the flags that some of them have at their establishments.

Permanent employees are less flexible to employers. These workers, places on payrolls are more stable than their temporary counterparts in the U.S. labor force.

Permanent work at regular wages can promote individual and social stability. That is as plain as night and day, and one reason why employers hire temporary workers: they labor in a position of increased subordination to the boss.

You might think that comfortable cheerleaders for so-called family values would protest such shabby treatment of working people in the U.S. But they don,t and that silence is most deafening.

Against that backdrop, U.S. hiring of temporary workers is done increasingly by staffing companies such as Manpower Inc., and not the employing firm for which the temporary employee labors. This cheery set-up facilitates the labor flexibility of temporary employees.

Work force flexibility also means less money spent on employees by employers. Investors, please take note.

Here is a situation of increased workplace exploitation. Job arrangements that limit hours and pay to workers improve so-called business efficiencies by eliminating fringe benefits.

Examples include health care, retirement pensions and vacations. And what could be more wonderful than that for the forces of the center and right now pummeling the U.S. working class?

SETH SANDRONSKY is a member of Sacramento Area Peace Action and a co-editor with Because People Matter, Sacramento’s progressive paper. He can be reached at: ssandron@hotmail.com


















Seth Sandronsky is a Sacramento journalist and member of the freelancers unit of the Pacific Media Workers Guild. Email sethsandronsky@gmail.com