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Are We Being Too Complacent About the Economy Crumbling Around Us?

Our readers had a lot to say about a poll that shows one-third of Americans aren't worried about losing their jobs.

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Well here's some reality, folks. I was laid off from Apple five months ago, and not even as a full time employee, but a "permatemp." Never heard of that term? Then I'd really suggest you do your homework. I had worked for Crapple for almost three years, full time with no benefits, and I did hold a high-profile position. They laid me off on a Sunday, then sent back my office equipment, most of which I had to purchase, by FedEx and all broken.

Because Apple misclassified me as "self-employed," I did not qualify for unemployment benefits. Remember, I worked on-site, full time and was managed and told what hours to come in. What we are dealing with here is a total denial and erosion of workers' rights that has been building up for the past two decades and now has reached crisis point. If we all stay in denial, we will be denied everything, and the CEOs will still be laughing all the way to the bank. Hilarious, isn't it? Still feel like bowing down to the Man?

LeftWright also points out that Americans have been brainwashed to worship capitalism:

This is all by design, due to the intentional miseducation and massive propagandization of the American people.

Soviet-style state capitalism died due to starvation.

American-style corporate capitalism is dying due to exhaustion.

The people of each locality and the world need to rise up and create a new, sustainable system that honors real work and celebrates every individual.

I hope that you and yours are well.

The truth shall set us free. Love is the only way forward.

Bizatch! argues that it's not so much the cult of capitalism that has brainwashed Americans, as the cult of positivity:

It is no secret to many of the other posters on here that most Americans cannot bear to think bad thoughts ... or, even though they might think them, to censor themselves from expressing them. This is the cult of positivity in effect. I see it all the time. My friends are loath to admit the crisis is as serious as even the timid broadcast news has been saying, and I'm often brusquely cut off and accused of being a "total downer" for saying what is openly evident about the situation.

But others find fault with the study and point out that a lack of anxiety and concern does not equal complacency.

Hagwind writes:

One-third of Americans aren't worried about losing their jobs --> one-third of Americans think their jobs are "safe" --> one-third of Americans are crazy?

Those are pretty big (il)logical leaps there. As a freelancer who's living on a shoestring, I don't for a minute think that my income is "safe": my bigger clients could cut back so much that they stop sending work my way, and if they all stopped hiring me tomorrow, I wouldn't be eligible for unemployment. But having been freelancing and/or working for very small businesses for most of my adult life, I've grown accustomed to uncertainty, and I'm frugal to the point of cheap. So I wouldn't tell a pollster I was "worried." Concerned, maybe, but not worried. Crazy? Maybe, but it's a pretty high-functioning crazy.

And while we're at it, don't knock denial. Without working denial mechanisms, we'd have a hard time getting through the day. If you get into a car, you could get maimed in an accident. If you step off the curb, you could get run over by a bus, etc., etc. If your worry about the possibilities gets out of control, you never leave the house -- and maybe break your neck in a fall down the stairs. Don't you ever wonder how people in war-torn places manage to keep putting one foot in front of the other, even when they could get hit by shrapnel or blown up by a mine? Don't knock denial.

 
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