05 Mar More junk “news”
Not content to settle for generational clickbait, now we need to point fingers based on gender. 😒
On November 13th, I published the article, “The poop storm is your fault” because that’s where we’re at. The fat cats who created this mess are NOT gonna blame themselves. But they and their corporate shills are more than happy to blame others.
According to Mike Rowe’s podcast, “It’s Worse Than You Think. The workforce participation rate that is. The number of able-bodied men choosing not to work is a crisis, and Nicholas Eberstadt, Henry Wendt Chair in Political Economy at the American Enterprise Institute, can prove it.” This spawned an amusing video Dave Ramsey produced titled, “7 Million American Males Refuse to Go to Work (Here’s Why).”
Naturally, we MUST ask the question: is this even true?
-“Bonus Episode: Men are Being Demonized for the So-Called “Labor Shortage” 🦜” https://www.buzzsprout.com/1125110/11775961
This is an interesting premise to me because the story used to demonize men for the so-called labor shortage is… drumroll, please…
Yet it was recycled to seem new. 😣
✔️ Is it accurate that 7 million men (specifically) are not working and are not even looking for work? Well, we can find literally THE SAME story going back to August of 2016. See for yourself! https://finance.yahoo.com/news/why-7-million-american-men-063039864.html / https://www.brookings.edu/blog/up-front/2016/08/15/men-not-at-work-why-so-many-men-ages-of-25-to-54-are-not-working/
✔️ So even though this statistic is 5+ years old, we’re now seeing it recycled as the cause of the so-called labor shortage. Essentially, the argument is: stop watching TV and playing video games and go to work instead, you 7 million dudes. If you took these jobs, we wouldn’t have inflation and we wouldn’t have a labor shortage! Never mind The Fed’s policies or the printing up of fiat currency like it was candy. Ohhhh noooo. Now we’re gonna resurrect an old story and use it for the blame game!
-from my podcast episode, Ibid.
On LinkedIn, we find:
“Remote work makes a recovery
Remote work’s pandemic boom took a hit as companies mandated returns to the office and job postings dwindled. A logical question followed: Would remote work continue to decline? Recent LinkedIn data showed a 3% bump in remote work from October 2022 to January 2023, the first rise in almost two years. But whether that is a blip or trend is unclear. Office attendance hit 50% in January for the first time since the pandemic, Bloomberg reported, and LinkedIn Senior Editor at Large George Anders said who is working where will ‘always be in a state of flux.'” –https://www.linkedin.com/news/story/remote-work-makes-a-recovery-5562980/
A blip or a trend LOL. “Always in a state of flux.” What a mealymouthed way to hedge your bets, IMO. Wow. Don’t commit to a narrative – just say, “Uh, it’ll always be in flux.”
A few thoughts:
+ A 3% bump – if true – over Q4 and the start of Q1 is nothing to rah-rah about. Some companies have WFH flexibility during the holidays and, sadly, some employees are expected to be available on email or some annoying Slack channel even while on PTO. Please also remember that large areas of the US had insane winter weather during this time. If you go back to the original article that LinkedIn cites, you’ll see this.
“In the midst of a harsh winter, would you rather commute to the office or work from home?” -George Anders on LI, February 8, 2023 (https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/remote-works-diehard-fans-finally-gain-some-cheery-news-george-anders/)
The recent article doesn’t mention that though. You’re expected to sweep that information under the rug and assume the WFH fighters are winning the battle.
On the side panel for LinkedIn news, we find Is This a Remote Renaissance? Hmm, well, is it or is it just hopium? Let’s click on it and find out. In this article, we find: “Remote work is on the rise according to LinkedIn’s workforce Confidence Index. Working on site has been the most common situation for us workers since April 2021.” I’m going to butt in and say, Why are we only just now allowed to know that? I’ve been reporting on that for quite some time. If the powers-that-be at your company tell you, “It’s time to come on back or there’s the door,” guess what? Unless you’re independently wealthy, or you have a good nest egg saved up and you’re confident you could rebound quickly, you’re gonna go back. So we’re only just now being told, I guess officially, that working on site has been the most common situation for us workers since April of 2021. Wow. “But data from the past two months shows remote works decline reversing, at least in the short term. In November 2022, there was a 30 point gap between the share of professionals working on site 55% versus those working remotely 25%. Now it’s narrowed to 22 points. The latest data shows 28% of professionals working remotely 18% With hybrid arrangements, and 50% reporting mostly on site.” Okay, so if we really want to be honest about it, 68% of people are in the office for some amount of time, and only 28% are saying they work completely in a remote capacity now. Sort of like if we can separate everything out, then maybe it can still seem like there’s some good news here if you want to stay remote only. “The rise in remote work could be due to a number of factors including winter weather, ad hoc working arrangements, and even company size. Read more in the latest edition of the LinkedIn Workforce Insights Newsletter.” Well, I think I will click on that. But yes, you know, there were companies that said, “We will allow you to work from home during the holiday season.” And I’m sure that winter weather did play a factor in this– if you couldn’t get there, if working from home on your laptop was the only option because that was the only option literally– I’m sure that the overlords were okay with that. I mean, there were places where roads were just impassable. So yes, if you’re living in that situation, you’re not going to be able to come on back to the office. It’s just a physical impossibility. I feel like this is being put out– I guess it’s hopium. I guess just to keep you pacified. I don’t know. I don’t know what the onus is behind it. But I just don’t trust it. Now, that’s just my opinion and I could be wrong, but I don’t trust it.
-“Saturday Broadcast 35,” published on February 11, 2023 https://www.buzzsprout.com/1125110/12183180
+ The Bloomberg article that LI references was published on February 13, 2023. “More Americans are now working fully remote than 3 months ago, despite fewer WFH job openings.” (https://www.cnbc.com/2023/02/13/remote-work-ticked-up-in-january-and-could-signal-the-future-of-wfh.html)
Again, this only makes sense if you factor in the holidays, PTO, and winter weather. Or you assume the statistics are bull💩, which is possible as well. The data referenced by CNBC is nothing new – it’s the same data coming from LI. What a bizarre circle. We’ll use your data and then you can use our data to promote your data but it all just came from your data to start with anyway. 😒
+ If I’m wrong on this and a big “hell no, we won’t go” WFH revolution takes place and Corpo America acquiesces forever, AWESOME. That would be fantastic. If I’m right, however, and you listened to hot air and hopium instead of making an RTO Survival Plan, you are effed.