anti-work

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Working the Phones: Control and Resistance in Call Centres by Jamie Woodcock

always be closing, anti-work, call centre, cognitive dissonance, collective bargaining, David Graeber, invention of the telephone, job satisfaction, late capitalism, means of production, millennium bug, new economy, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, post-industrial society, post-work, precariat, profit motive, social intelligence, stakhanovite, women in the workforce

He expands this by applying it to ‘the transition to post-Fordist empire’, arguing that it ‘marks a renewed intensification and generalization of plantation-era processes by which capital attempted to impose work – a generalization and intensification that is negated through its refusal’.76 Taylor also argues – and it is important to reiterate this here – ‘while labor in a plantation society and labor in Fordist society are qualitatively different, the plantation and the factory are both constituted through an antagonistic dialectic, pitting a workforce striving for “universality” against the regime of labor in capitalism’.77 The opposition of the anti-work perspective to orthodox Marxism is a historical peculiarity. Marx himself studied the ‘antagonistic social dynamics of postemancipation Jamaica’ and ‘would develop a robust antiwork perspective in the Grundrisse’.78 While Negri’s perspective was developed through a close reading of the Grundrisse, the figure of the slave remains absent in his anti-work politics. For Marx, the free slaves became the active subjects of two refusals: refusing slavery and then refusing wage labour.79 Freed from the direct, forced exploitation of slavery they are unwilling to submit to indirect modes of exploitation. This experience in the Caribbean is the starting point for Marx’s notion of anti-work, although he did not develop this in the same way as did either Lafargue or James.

By giving up on the question of control of the labour process and instead limiting themselves to defensive campaigns, trade unions have failed to relate to the anger and resistance at a workplace level. They do, however, remain organisations in which arguments can be posed and organisational initiatives tried out – at least to some degree. anti-work In the context of ‘bullshit jobs’, it becomes important to understand the tendency toward the rejection of work. The theoretical basis of the anti-work perspective can be traced back to the Cuban Marxist Paul Lafargue. In a pamphlet, The Right to Be Lazy published in 1880, he argues that the proletariat, the great class embracing all the producers of civilized nations, the class which in freeing itself will free humanity from servile toil and will make of the human animal a free being, – the proletariat, betraying its instincts, despising its historic mission, has let itself be perverted by the dogma 144 Precarious Organisation of work.

Through an investigation of the connection between Paul Lafargue and C. L. R. James, and the link that Christopher Taylor identifies between Operaismo and the Caribbean, an argument can be posed about the possibilities of an anti-work politics. If there is a historical connection between modern management techniques and slave owners, an analysis of the development of struggle between these forms and their subjects is also important. The search to uncover the subjects of revolt is therefore the search for those engaging in a refusal: from the slave, to the Fordist worker, to the precarious worker seeking to regain some autonomy. The anti-work perspective provides a critique that is not limited to the question of control of the labour process – indeed, the possibility of control is absent at this point anyway. In the context of ‘bullshit jobs’38 it is possible, as Christopher Taylor argues, to go further than ‘moralistic invocations of labor’s value’ that ‘appear grotesquely comical’.39 The analysis of the technology in the call centre has important implications for translating the traditions of trade unionism into new contexts.


pages: 320 words: 86,372

Mythology of Work: How Capitalism Persists Despite Itself by Peter Fleming

1960s counterculture, anti-work, call centre, clockwatching, commoditize, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, David Graeber, Etonian, future of work, G4S, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, illegal immigration, Kitchen Debate, late capitalism, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, market fundamentalism, means of production, neoliberal agenda, Parkinson's law, post-industrial society, post-work, profit maximization, profit motive, quantitative easing, Results Only Work Environment, shareholder value, social intelligence, The Chicago School, transaction costs, wealth creators, working poor

They even suggest that organizations ought to design their offices after warehouse apartments, to mimic the creativity, comradery and ethos of people driven by a labour of love. But workplace informality has a dark side; namely, the potential for authoritarianism to take on a rather sadistic and perverse quality. Informality and power do not go well together. Under such circumstances we are not only paying for the elite’s freedoms, but being callously toyed with to boot. Hence Jez’s rancour. And herein lies the problem with anti-work arguments that evoke Parkinson’s Law. The idea behind the law is simple. If we are given eight hours to perform a task, it usually takes eight hours to do so successfully. If we are only given three hours to do the same task, it typically takes three hours to do so successfully. Therefore, we could spend much less time on the job whilst maintaining the same level of productivity achieved by the 40-hour work week.

Rationalization is thus a question of perspective or standpoint rather than numerical formulation, and that standpoint is completely determined by class politics. The ‘waste’ that managerialism so meticulously identifies is often simply our freedom to act in concert to achieve self-determined ends. Or, our freedom to do nothing (although it should be remembered that, unlike Bertrand Russell, most successful anti-work advocates hate ‘doing nothing’ per se, which is more akin to life in the post-industrial office than anything else). But most importantly, neo-capitalism views the freedoms of worker democracy as the clearest manifestation of wastefulness. Workplace democracy is technocratic capitalism’s greatest fear and enemy for obvious reasons. The computer says ‘no’. Private corporations, in tandem with the neoliberal state, play a powerful part in shaping the nature of modern work patterns today.

Thompson (1967) noted how the legendary ‘Saint Monday’ binges became the enemy for early industrialists and government officials. The customary practice consisted of workers dropping their tools, vacating the factory and getting extremely inebriated on Monday mornings just as the workday was formally beginning. A raft of disciplinary measures was hurled at the working class to stamp out this reverential tribute to Saint Monday. The anti-work connotations of boozing on the job continued through the Fordist period under Western capitalism. For employees, drinking was not only a moment of escape, but also a sign of triumphant insubordination in the face of sobering discipline, as epitomized by Hamper (1992) in his tale about working on the line at General Motors. The relationship between alcohol and authority takes on an important political dimension in societies governed by prison-like regimentation and disciplinary power.


pages: 236 words: 62,158

Marx at the Arcade: Consoles, Controllers, and Class Struggle by Jamie Woodcock

4chan, Alexey Pajitnov wrote Tetris, anti-work, augmented reality, barriers to entry, battle of ideas, Boris Johnson, Build a better mousetrap, butterfly effect, call centre, collective bargaining, Columbine, conceptual framework, cuban missile crisis, David Graeber, deindustrialization, deskilling, Donald Trump, game design, gig economy, glass ceiling, global supply chain, global value chain, Hacker Ethic, Howard Zinn, John Conway, Kickstarter, Landlord’s Game, late capitalism, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, Minecraft, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, Oculus Rift, pink-collar, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, union organizing, unpaid internship, V2 rocket

Interestingly, in a survey by Forbes, 69 percent of users of Pokémon GO said they played the game while at work, indicating the level of boredom many of us face at work in our daily lives.35 While playing Pokémon GO at work is not going to change the world, the anti-work appropriation of gamification on workers’ terms should be celebrated. The widespread adoption of smart-phones has meant that many workers have found ways to access videogames away from the electronic supervision of their work computer. Pokémon GO was clearly able to capitalize on this anti-work sentiment, as the augmented reality (AR) mobile game was downloaded over 100 million times on Google Play and generated $200 million in sales. Nintendo’s share price initially soared. Although, amusingly, it later dived as investors realized the company itself would not profit that much from the game, given it was developed by Niantic (and draws on data from Google, who also incubated the company).

This refusal of work saw young workers rejecting the jobs their parents’ generation had and refusing to work on capital’s terms. Companies like Atari promised “play as work” as an alternative to the restrictive conditions of industrial or office-based Fordism. This was an early innovation of the “work hard, play hard” workplace culture that would become so influential in Silicon Valley. However, the company later sold out to the decidedly non–anti-work Warner Communications.43 Around the same time, in 1973, David Ahl published 101 BASIC Computer Games, which included code for the games Chomp, a two-player strategy game; Hexapawn, a smaller pawn-only chess game; Hamurabi, a text-based resource management game; Nim, discussed earlier; and Super Star Trek, a very popular text-based game where the player commands the USS Enterprise. The book would go on to sell a million copies, with tens of millions of home computers able to run the games by the 1980s.44 The first-person perspective was introduced in 1974 with Maze War, a game with basic wire-frame graphics.

It sold 64 million units, and with the launch of the Game Boy Color in 1998 (after which the sales numbers were only released as combined figures), then sold a total of just under 120 million units.63 The original Game Boy came bundled with Tetris, the most successful videogame to date with an estimated 170 million sales.64 The game was originally created by Alexey Pajitnov and was leaked out from the Soviet Union—an ironic success considering it came from the losing side of the Cold War. That same code traveled a far way to the staircase of my family friend’s home so that I could play the game. Another successful puzzle game, Solitaire, was bundled with Windows 3.0 on the PC in 1990, leading to millions of new players, many of whom may have never played on consoles. In offices across the world, people found a new outlet for anti-work boredom. While consoles were becoming popular household items, this computer product reached an entirely new audience. The next stage of the competition between Sega and Nintendo began with the launch of the Mega Drive / Genesis, featuring Sonic the Hedgehog. The console went on to sell 30 million units.65 This was followed by the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), which sold almost 50 million units.66 This, too, has been refreshed in the recently released (and now very wordy) Nintendo Classic Mini Super Nintendo Entertainment System, which allows nostalgic players to play classic 16-bit games like Star Fox 2, F-Zero, Street Fighter II Turbo, Super Mario World, Super Mario Kart, and The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past on modern flat-screen TVs.


pages: 357 words: 95,986

Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work by Nick Srnicek, Alex Williams

3D printing, additive manufacturing, air freight, algorithmic trading, anti-work, back-to-the-land, banking crisis, basic income, battle of ideas, blockchain, Boris Johnson, Bretton Woods, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, centre right, collective bargaining, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, David Graeber, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, deskilling, Doha Development Round, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ferguson, Missouri, financial independence, food miles, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, future of work, gender pay gap, housing crisis, income inequality, industrial robot, informal economy, intermodal, Internet Archive, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kickstarter, late capitalism, liberation theology, Live Aid, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market design, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, mass incarceration, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, Mont Pelerin Society, neoliberal agenda, New Urbanism, Occupy movement, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, patent troll, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, Philip Mirowski, post scarcity, post-work, postnationalism / post nation state, precariat, price stability, profit motive, quantitative easing, reshoring, Richard Florida, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Slavoj Žižek, social web, stakhanovite, Steve Jobs, surplus humans, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, wages for housework, We are the 99%, women in the workforce, working poor, working-age population

The difference between a populist movement and folk-political approaches lies in this stance towards differences: whereas the former seeks to build a common language and project, the latter prefers differences to express themselves as differences and to avoid any universalising function. The mobilisation of a populist movement around anti-work politics would require articulating a populism in such a way that a variety of struggles for social justice and human emancipation could see their interests being expressed in the movement. Importantly, anti-work politics provides such resources: for example, it is perhaps the best option for a red-green coalition, insofar as it overcomes the tensions between an economic programme of jobs and growth and an environmental programme of decreased carbon emissions. The post-work project is also an inherently feminist one, recognising the invisible labour carried out predominantly by women, as well as the feminisation of the labour market, and the necessity of providing financial independence for women’s full liberation.

Finally, the post-work project builds upon postcolonial and indigenous struggles with the aim of providing a means of subsistence for the massive informal labour force, as well as mobilising against barriers to immigration.26 Articulating the character of a movement that can bring together such differences helps to emphasise the importance of demands to any proper populism. Demands form a key medium for building unity, and must therefore connect in multiple ways with different people.27 Such demands do not presume to know in advance who will be called into action by them, but they allow people to see their own particular interests within them while nevertheless maintaining their differences from each other.28 For example, the demands of an anti-work politics have different meanings for a university student, a single mother, an industrial worker, and those outside the labour force; but in spite of these differences, each of them can find their own interests represented in the call for a post-work society. Mobilising these people together and under the name of a demand then becomes the work of on-the-ground politics. A movement predicated on a populist logic can therefore give consistency to a series of diffuse grievances and requests, without necessarily negating differences.29 Particular demands are inscribed into a coherent narrative articulating how various demands share a common antagonist.

A quick overview of how such an ecology might operate will offer some sense of how these proposals might work together. This can only be highly schematic, given the particularities of any given struggle and the complexity of the issues at hand. Inevitably, an ecosystem of organisations is forged in specific circumstances, with different decisions being made in the face of different political contexts. That said, a broad social movement would be essential to any anti-work politics, affording a wide range of different organisational and tactical compositions. At one end of the spectrum, there are transient bursts of political energy, in the form of riots and spontaneous protests. Urban unrest in America, for instance, was a key motivating factor behind elite support for a basic income in the 1960s.39 Such eruptions may not make intricate demands, but they demand a response.


Work in the Future The Automation Revolution-Palgrave MacMillan (2019) by Robert Skidelsky Nan Craig

3D printing, Airbnb, algorithmic trading, Amazon Web Services, anti-work, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, basic income, business cycle, cloud computing, collective bargaining, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, data is the new oil, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, disintermediation, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, feminist movement, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, gig economy, global supply chain, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, Loebner Prize, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, moral panic, Network effects, new economy, off grid, pattern recognition, post-work, Ronald Coase, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Steve Jobs, strong AI, technoutopianism, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, the market place, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, wealth creators, working poor

Admitting that individuals differ in this sense only means that we need to create alternative structures, not scrap the idea of freedom from jobs entirely. It is possible to reconcile the idea that humans need purposeful work (and sometimes even structured obligations) with the idea that fewer jobs could be desirable, as long as we acknowledge that life is full of unpaid obligations. 8 Work as an Obligation 79 If we pull back from distant-future utopias and address the here-and-­ now instead, anti-work arguments are a reasonable corrective to our excessive valorisation of work. Feminist anti-work arguments (for instance in Kathi Week’s The Problem with Work6) are particularly strong, contradicting the liberal-feminist and Marxist-feminist assumption that full-­ time paid work is unequivocally a good thing for women. The full entry of women into the job market has been achieved with no systematic provision at all for reassigning all the non-paid work they had previously done.


pages: 336 words: 83,903

The Refusal of Work: The Theory and Practice of Resistance to Work by David Frayne

anti-work, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, call centre, clockwatching, David Graeber, deindustrialization, deskilling, future of work, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, low skilled workers, McJob, means of production, moral panic, new economy, post-work, profit motive, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, unpaid internship, working poor, young professional

Beyond the level of theory, Gorz did not expand in any great detail on who the neo-proletariat were, or where they could be found. What is important is that the neo-proletariat were understood by Gorz not as revolutionary political subjects (i.e., they were not a replacement for Marx’s revolutionary proletariat), but as the embodiment of a cultural disillusionment with work that had yet to find collective expression or political purchase. The anti-work sensibilities that he believed were mounting constituted a revolution only in people’s hearts and minds, but whether this supposed disaffection with work would be translated into a genuine social alternative remained to be seen. Today, many who call for a re-evaluation of work remain confident about the existence of a cultural undercurrent in which people are actively questioning the extent to which work is worth their time.

Samantha described these jobs fondly, saying that she had ‘met nice people and had nice conversations’, but when we spoke she did not know what the future held. She was thinking about training to be a psychotherapist. The important thing for her was that she live with intention: ‘I’m crafting my own life.’ The key point we can take from these accounts of the breakpoint is that, whether people had reduced their hours or given up work altogether, they had not done so according to some kind of crude, anti-work morality, but according to a strongly felt desire to do more. The stories that people told about their jobs show how the desire for resistance can be fuelled by the lack of meaning and autonomy in employment. Functional social roles such as a paid job can never be identical with the complex, fully rounded people who are forced to inhabit them. There is always an excess of self that exceeds the social role and wants to burst free.


pages: 221 words: 46,396

The Left Case Against the EU by Costas Lapavitsas

anti-work, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, capital controls, central bank independence, collective bargaining, declining real wages, eurozone crisis, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global reserve currency, hiring and firing, neoliberal agenda, offshore financial centre, post-work, price stability, quantitative easing, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Washington Consensus, Wolfgang Streeck

Often this view is coupled with a demand for ‘More Europe’, that is, for stronger integration, or for a push in the direction of federalism, on the assumption that the lurch of the EU in a neoliberal direction was facilitated by the incompleteness of the union.13 From this perspective, the EMU and the EU are considered, at bottom, as arenas in which to fight political struggles. Neoliberal and anti-working-class policies, far from being inherent in the institutional functioning of the EMU and the EU, are seen as merely reflecting the transient balance of class forces in key countries, such as Germany and France. Calls to exit or dissolve the EMU, in this view, would not only be pointless, but could also open a path for siding with right-wing nationalist and authoritarian forces. The political conclusion drawn is that the Left ought to separate the mechanisms of the EMU and the EU from their neoliberal political baggage, thus allowing the same mechanisms to promote national and working-class solidarity across Europe.


pages: 83 words: 7,274

Buyology by Martin Lindstrom

anti-work, Berlin Wall, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Kickstarter, Mikhail Gorbachev, Pepto Bismol, Saturday Night Live, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker

He sued Warner Brothers, and the filmmakers, claiming that the subliminal images of a demon’s face flashed throughout the movie had caused him to pass out.4 And in 1999, some viewers accused the makers of the film Fight Club of subliminal manipulation, claiming they had planted pornographic images of Brad Pitt in the movie in a deliberate attempt, according to one Web site, to enhance the film’s “anti-work message and revolutionary tone.” Accusations of subliminal manipulation have been leveled at musicians from Led Zeppelin (play “Stairway to Heaven” backward and you’ll supposedly hear “Oh, here’s to my sweet Satan”) to Queen (“Another One Bites the Dust” played backward allegedly yields “It’s fun to smoke marijuana”). And in 1990, the parents of two eighteen-year-old boys from Nevada who had attempted suicide took the British heavy-metal band Judas Priest to court, charging that the band had inserted subliminal messages—including “Let’s be dead” and “Do it”—inside its song lyrics.


pages: 208 words: 74,328

The Road to Wigan Pier by George Orwell

anti-work, British Empire, Etonian, place-making, Upton Sinclair

All of these people have the same interests and the same enemies as the working class. All are being robbed and bullied by the same system. Yet how many of them realise it? When the pinch came nearly all of them would side with their oppressors and against those who ought to be their allies. It is quite easy to imagine a middle class crushed down to the worst depths of poverty and still remaining bitterly anti-working class in sentiment; this being, of course, a ready-made Fascist Party. Obviously the Socialist movement has got to capture the exploited middle class before it is too late; above all it must capture the office-workers, who are so numerous and, if they knew how to combine, so powerful. Equally obviously it has so far failed to do so. The very last person in whom you can hope to find revolutionary opinions is a clerk or a commercial traveller.


pages: 231 words: 76,283

Work Optional: Retire Early the Non-Penny-Pinching Way by Tanja Hester

"side hustle", Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, anti-work, asset allocation, barriers to entry, buy and hold, crowdsourcing, diversification, estate planning, financial independence, full employment, gig economy, hedonic treadmill, high net worth, index fund, labor-force participation, longitudinal study, medical bankruptcy, mortgage debt, obamacare, passive income, post-work, remote working, rent control, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, stocks for the long run, Vanguard fund

At least once every day, I think to myself, I can’t believe this is real life. We’re so grateful to have realized that by approaching our money a little differently than most people do, we could reclaim our time and embark on the work-optional life of our dreams. If you’re willing to change your money mindset and occasionally go against what we’re all taught is the “right way” to do things, you can craft the life of your dreams, too. This book is not anti-work. Work is a good and noble thing, something nearly every person ever born has had to do in some form, whether or not they were formally employed. As humans we are wired to be productive, and work provides an outlet for that need. Work can give us a sense of purpose, a sense of contributing to society, and a sense of usefulness. The problem isn’t work itself, but our current societal work culture.


pages: 374 words: 111,284

The AI Economy: Work, Wealth and Welfare in the Robot Age by Roger Bootle

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, agricultural Revolution, AI winter, Albert Einstein, anti-work, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Bernie Sanders, blockchain, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Chris Urmson, computer age, conceptual framework, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, facts on the ground, financial intermediation, full employment, future of work, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of the wheel, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, mega-rich, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, positional goods, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, social intelligence, spinning jenny, Stanislav Petrov, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, technological singularity, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, universal basic income, US Airways Flight 1549, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, wealth creators, winner-take-all economy, Y2K, Yogi Berra

Accordingly, the need to acquire the latest gizmo does not provide that much of an incentive to keep working all hours – until the next gizmo comes along. Actually, for the USA there is a very simple economic explanation of why Keynes’s prophecy has not been fulfilled. Over recent decades, most workers’ wages have not increased. For American males in their thirties, median real wages were lower in 2004 than they had been in 1974.18 (The reasons for this are discussed in Chapter 6.) The anti-work preference We should not blithely accept at face value the “work is fun” explanation for continued long working hours that I discussed above. There is a serious risk of mistaking the fulfillment of some people at work for the experience of everybody. For many people, work isn’t always quite what it is cracked up to be. In fact, many, if not most, people are alienated by their jobs – still. They find them tedious, meaningless, and boring.


pages: 621 words: 123,678

Financial Freedom: A Proven Path to All the Money You Will Ever Need by Grant Sabatier

"side hustle", 8-hour work day, Airbnb, anti-work, asset allocation, bitcoin, buy and hold, cryptocurrency, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, financial independence, fixed income, follow your passion, full employment, Home mortgage interest deduction, index fund, loss aversion, Lyft, money market fund, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, passive income, remote working, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Skype, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, TaskRabbit, the rule of 72, time value of money, uber lyft, Vanguard fund

By the time we get off the clock, we’re usually so tired or run-down from working all day and commuting that we don’t want to do anything except sit on the couch. This is why the average American watches 5.4 hours of TV a day. Sure, we have weekends, but how often do you spend those running around trying to catch up on all the errands and chores you didn’t get to during the week? The point is, you are trading the best hours of your week and your life for a paycheck. I’m not anti-work; in fact, I like working. Humans need to work to be happy. But like time, not all work is created equal. There is a huge difference between working at a job you hate, being stuck at a desk or on the clock for forty or more hours a week, and doing work you love and are passionate about, on your own time, and having the freedom to do something else if you want to. The same trade-off occurs when you look at your life as a whole.


Autonomia: Post-Political Politics 2007 by Sylvere Lotringer, Christian Marazzi

anti-communist, anti-work, business cycle, collective bargaining, dematerialisation, do-ocracy, feminist movement, full employment, land reform, late capitalism, means of production, social intelligence, wages for housework, women in the workforce

They compialn, in other words, that the prospect of jabs that dIffer from factory work is not a sufficient incentive to productive labour, but rather acts as a signpost towards receipt of income in the sphere of circulation, towards the world of revenue (money as money, removed from the cIrcuit of productive capital). At this point the Whole "party system" joins in the great debate on the reproduction of classes in Italy, its distortions, imbalances etc., the general conclusion being that it is not sufficient to reprodUce a lower-to-middle bourgeoIsie in an anti-working class rOie, if this then becomes an unproductive class in receipt of revenue! Andso the scapegoat mythOlogy of "Hunt the Parasite" - the Iynchpin of the c:isis ideology - comes to the fore. Backed by the "scientific" revelations of Sylos Labini, GOfferi, etc, this game now starts In earnast. A sort of vague eg,alitarlanlsm emerges, which scrutinises the income of the clerical worker the student and the tertiary worker, and says nothing, for example, about the tr~nsfor. .matlon of capltal-which.ls-product!


pages: 683 words: 203,624

The Victorian City: Everyday Life in Dickens' London by Judith Flanders

anti-work, centre right, Corn Laws, John Snow's cholera map, Ralph Waldo Emerson, traveling salesman, urban sprawl, working poor

For public figures in the first half of the nineteenth century, the ceremonial of death was a street event in which outsiders and passers-by were expected to take part. In 1831, an American tourist noticed a funeral procession in the yard of Westminster Abbey. There were just seven official mourners, but, he was happy to see, they were trailed by ‘a respectful multitude’ of strangers. in 1847, the 3rd Duke of Northumberland died. He had attempted to wreck the Slave Trade Abolition Bill, was vehemently anti-Catholic and anti-working-class, as well as being considered rather stupid and extremely arrogant by the public and his peers alike. Yet ‘crowds of persons’ lined the streets to watch his funeral procession travel from Northumberland House to Westminster Abbey. It was after the mass orgy of ostentatious ceremonial that was the Duke of Wellington’s funeral in 1852 (see pp. 335–46) that funerals of the great, the good and the not-so-good became for the most part quieter events, with less public participation.


pages: 1,737 words: 491,616

Rationality: From AI to Zombies by Eliezer Yudkowsky

Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, anthropic principle, anti-pattern, anti-work, Arthur Eddington, artificial general intelligence, availability heuristic, Bayesian statistics, Berlin Wall, Build a better mousetrap, Cass Sunstein, cellular automata, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, correlation does not imply causation, cosmological constant, creative destruction, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, dematerialisation, different worldview, discovery of DNA, Douglas Hofstadter, Drosophila, effective altruism, experimental subject, Extropian, friendly AI, fundamental attribution error, Gödel, Escher, Bach, hindsight bias, index card, index fund, Isaac Newton, John Conway, John von Neumann, Long Term Capital Management, Louis Pasteur, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, money market fund, Nash equilibrium, Necker cube, NP-complete, P = NP, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, Pierre-Simon Laplace, placebo effect, planetary scale, prediction markets, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, reversible computing, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Rubik’s Cube, Saturday Night Live, Schrödinger's Cat, scientific mainstream, scientific worldview, sensible shoes, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Singularitarianism, Solar eclipse in 1919, speech recognition, statistical model, Steven Pinker, strong AI, technological singularity, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the map is not the territory, the scientific method, Turing complete, Turing machine, ultimatum game, X Prize, Y Combinator, zero-sum game

Just as the principle of burdensome details requires that each part of a belief be separately justified, it requires that each part be separately raised to attention. As discussed in Perpetual Motion Beliefs, faith and type 2 perpetual motion machines (water → ice cubes + electricity) have in common that they purport to manufacture improbability from nowhere, whether the improbability of water forming ice cubes or the improbability of arriving at correct beliefs without observation. Sometimes most of the anti-work involved in manufacturing this improbability is getting us to pay attention to an unwarranted belief—thinking on it, dwelling on it. In large answer spaces, attention without evidence is more than halfway to belief without evidence. Someone who spends all day thinking about whether the Trinity does or does not exist, rather than Allah or Thor or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, is more than halfway to Christianity.