Archive for the ‘Employment’ Tag



– To successful Applicant: We offer you a position on the 12th floor, or on the ground floor: which will it be?!



– Looking at Interviewer: I think I opt for the below job!



A Fitting Question


If Chris Christie should make it to lead the USA, will he become known as the oval president?


A snug fit for his office?



España (Otra Vez)

When truth becomes truism, the platitudes get going. And in Spain this hollow circle is full well round. Mr Zapatero, its Prime Minister and main proponent of empty pronouncements, predicting that in three years time the crisis that wasn’t, will have come to an end. Additionally he offers vacant eyes and a goofy smile to back himself up.

But what Spain lacks to do all this, is manufacturing, the production of engineered goods, instead of beaches, waiters, oranges and olive oil. Also with more than enough concrete, bricks and lazy bankers by now.

At any rate, Mr Zapatero keeps getting elected because apparently people like what they hear, which is nothing. Or what they see, which also is zilch as whenever there’s a problem he’s nowhere to be found except on photographs, smiling elsewhere.

Anybody home?

¿Hay alguien en casa?

¿Pero tío, que házes, dónde estás?

Arsenic & Old Beefs

I’m a man of compassion, just don’t let me down, I do consider this stealing from me, when I’ve given so much more than I ever got.

I’m also a man of correlations and bottom lines. And pragmatism rules the roost, or as someone else put it the other day, the key is proceeding with a cool head and a warm heart.

So that whereas my sympathy lies with sharing and respecting the underdog, you can’t have underdogs take over, they’re unfit for the job. But you can’t let greedy bastards ruin our lives either, so that’s where alternating democratic rule comes in.

The Dutch have this effective economic ‘polder’ model, creating peace in the ranks by having worker’s representatives, not the unions, witness the major obstacles corporations face in the free market place, from a free seat or two on the Board. And while not allowed to call the shots, Labour at least witnessing the agonies of management, first hand. That not everything is a lie, exploitation, oppression of the working man, by hard-driving entrepreneurs small and large, but that sacrifice is required sometimes from both Socialism and Capitalism with a human face.

Yet I’ve seen too many hot-headed, short-sighted, possessive labour leaders and their syndicates smother the goose with the golden eggs: killing companies with their stupid intransigence. And an visceral but also professional sense of distrust.

So no, the tail can never wag the dog, but this is still news to some. And in the XXI century people raising a balled fist, vowing to fight for the proletariat, donning red scarves and going to workers’ pick-nicks with banners and flags, roaring the words of the Internationale as if it were 1889, is laughable and unimaginative. Yet this is what a good number of leftist leaders, particularly in Latin countries still practice while facing a crisis of world proportion, only contaminating the situation with further ruin, unwilling to simplify hiring and firing, even with a safety net, or view anything with a reasonable degree of maturity.

I compare these anachronistic leftists with domestic abusers, husbands with small minds and deep fears and insecurities, battering their wives. Husbands to whom everything is betrayal and ownership of another person or their job, their right. Those apt to kill and maim the woman or the company who’s kept things together all those years, often in deep, deep pain, but unable to preserve matters the way they were. Men unable to divorce, remarry, change jobs, because they’re afraid and so they strike out. Stuck in a mental prison from where they abuse even their own children, and co-workers and God knows who else, unable to manage and control the slightest bit of unhappiness, men without balanced pride.

When I was younger I changed jobs 20 times, nearly always ending up better than I was, but courage playing a large part in this. And employment rules and regulation making it prohibitive for people to be hired and fired in an international commercial cauldron, in the end not helping workers at all. For once they are let go, they’re never hired again. But a flexible system consistently adjusting and creating new openings by letting others go, compensating them but still letting them go, also gives constant birth to a whole slew of opportunities and the odd new love.

Fluidity of the labour market it’s called, and it works, everything else a poor second cousin, leading to atrophy and nepotism and, yes, new class poverty. Plus murder, of course.

PS There’s another way of doing it. In some languages the meaning of the word conserve is identical to the word preserve. So that if the English forgot about their Conservatives, instead voting in the Preservatives , they’d never be in Labour again…


Certainly not all, but all the wile and cunning it takes to reach the top, leaves many completely addicted to the chase but soon enough losing all sight of the only objective.

The great irony that what it takes to become a major, even historic decision-maker leaves one voiceless when the time comes to speak out or think beyond the immediate.

At Davos 2009 nobody seems to worry about your children and grandchildren. While trying of course to fix the current, rather too drastic world economic decline, nobody has time for trivial questions like a planet unable to sustain ‘Western’ industrial life style to begin with. Let alone making it universal, that is 3 billion Chinese and Indians owning 2 residences, 3 cars per family and taking 3 vacations a year in Hawaii, Paris and Samoa and to which they’re as entitled as Mr. Mrs. J. Blow from Wichita Falls.

That while consumerism is still the best way to distribute wealth, there is the matter of waste, garbage, raw materials and climate change to consider.

That therefore, demographically speaking, far fewer people are a ‘must’, still complicated by them living longer than ever. And technology making half this brave new world’s workforce redundant in less than a couple of centuries or so, the thought of how to keep these people fed and busy or let Darwinian observation prevail, not such a remote idea at all.

Society sooner than later reaching the threshold of having to pay a lot of people to stay at home and stop ‘producing’, or at least perform social duties in exchange for guaranteed income, preventing them from gratuitous thrill seeking or the falling into personal depression and crime.

That a conference decade upon decade blindly focusing on ‘Now’, on ‘Growth’, on ‘Development’, concerned with ‘Gain’, always ‘Bigger’, ‘Better’, ‘More’ and still… ‘More’ is a conference of the visionless, unable to view the soft-landing, intelligent economic reduction of nations the future demands, while hanging onto our planet for dear life…

Or better still, hanging on to our dear planet for life. But what to expect from decision-makers repeatedly found to be mostly smiling, always smiling but ambitious, blatant buskers performing only on the pavements of history. Their show one day turning out to have been a mere side show. A prelude, to continuation… or life zero.

Ah, yes, details! After the photographs, let’s do dinner, Your Excellencies!

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