One has to be a shit eating brown nose to not refer to the jobs in the New Servant Economy as McJobs.
Can you really imagine anyone with an alternative that doesn’t require shedding ones’s last drop of humanity saying, “Oh boy I got hired at McDonald’s where I too can be a slave earning a below poverty wage”? On top of not earning enough to live on you are supposed to smile.
One has to really look hard to find a worse job than Walmart, yet the proles of the underclass consider the fast food industry a step down from Walmart.
So much for the “Economic Recovery”…
From Infoshop: http://news.infoshop.org/article.php?story=2011041617404
McDonald’s: Taxing Americans for 56 Years
by Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., Executive Director, Center for Science in the Public Interest
April 15, 2011
“April 15” fills many Americans with anxiety as tax returns become due (though this year Uncle Sam has given us until April 18). I recently remembered that April 15 has another grim association: the opening, 56 years ago, of Ray Kroc’s first McDonald’s franchise in Des Plaines, Ill. (Now is as good a time as any to disclose that my organization has hauled Ronald McDonald to court to try to stop the predatory practice of using toys to lure children to disease-promoting Happy Meals.)
With the possible exception of Coca-Cola (itself a McDonald’s menu mainstay), I can’t think of another food company that has had such an enormous impact on the way we eat and the way we farm. Yes, thanks to McDonald’s, one can eat out quite cheaply. And it’s hard to be dismissive of that achievement in a time of high unemployment and high income disparity. But that low price obscures the financial toll exacted on Americans by McDonald’s and McDonald’s imitators in terms of the costs associated with treating obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and other conditions. So in that way, fast food restaurants have been taxing us for the past half-century-plus: We now spend more than $270 billion each year on heart disease alone.
Of course, McDonald’s isn’t to blame for all diet-related disease. But consider the ways in which McDonald’s has contributed to the homogenization of the American diet. Fatty, factory-farmed burgers on refined white bread, for instance, have become the omnipresent, default sandwich. McDonald’s original little burger may have just started the world-wide arms race to build the biggest, baddest burgers. The Big Mac was bad enough, but it’s the cultural grandfather of monstrosities like Hardee’s 1,320-calorie Monster Thickburger.
Consider french fries. McDonald’s fries are less harmful than they used to be, because the company has ditched partially hydrogenated frying oils, and beef tallow before that, in favor of trans-fat-free vegetable oil. But McDonald’s may have just acclimated the whole country to consider a deep-fried, low-nutrient white potato as the default vegetable side dish. Equally important, I believe that McDonald’s deserves a good share of the blame for the fact that many Americans consider high-calorie, low-nutrient sodas to be the default beverage. Before McDonald’s and other fast-food restaurants, soft drinks were occasional treats. But with sugary soft drinks, usually Coke, being the default beverage sold with fast-food meals, kids grow up thinking that a meal without a soda is like an evening without television.
Billions of dollars of advertising over the years — McDonald’s spent $872 million in 2009 alone — makes all of this seem normal. I don’t think that McDonald’s genius was in satisfying a demand for meals of burgers, fries, and Cokes. Its genius was creating that demand in the first place. And thus, the occasional treat or convenience is now a once-, twice-, or even a thrice-a-day indulgence. (Unguardedly using the language of street drug pushers, McDonald’s actually refers to its best customers as “heavy users.”)
It’s a smaller point, but consider how McDonald’s also has shaped where, and how quickly, we consume our food. Many years ago, it would have been considered bizarre, or at least impolite, to eat a meal while behind the wheel of a moving car. But the drive-through culture that McDonald’s helped midwife made that dangerous practice commonplace.
In the 56 April 15ths that have passed by since Ray Kroc’s dream became a reality, McDonald’s has coarsened our palates, expanded our waistlines, clogged our arteries, and brainwashed our children with toy-based marketing. I hope that Food Day, the recently launched grassroots push for healthy, affordable food produced in a sustainable, humane manner, slowly begins to undo some of the damage fast food has done to our diets and our culture. The Food Day campaign culminates on October 24, and will publicize the message that “it’s time to eat real” and will celebrate healthy, delicious, home-cooked meals. That’s a message that should turn one clown’s smile into a frown.
Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., is executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest and is the founder of Food Day.
From Slate: http://www.slate.com/id/2291534/
Heading for a McRecovery?
McDonald’s plan to hire 50,000 people in one day and what it says about America’s economic prospects.
By Annie Lowrey
Posted Tuesday, April 19, 2011
McDonald’s has named today, April 19, “national hiring day.” As with everything McDonald’s, it’s all about scale. In one day, the chain hopes to add as many as 50,000 people to its payrolls; worldwide, it employs 1.7 million workers, runs 32,000 restaurants, and serves tens of millions of burgers every day. On the one hand, this is great news: 50,000 jobs! On the other hand, 50,000 McJobs?
Indeed, the McHiringSpree raises the question: Has the recession turned us into a nation of McWorkers? More precisely, what kind of jobs has the recovery ginned up?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics offers a host of month-by-month information on who is working where, for how much and for how long. The data show that a few industries are at or above their level of employment before the recession started. The federal workforce is slightly bigger, once you factor out job losses at the Postal Service and ignore Census hiring. Employment is also up in some niches, like computer systems design. And health care remains the United States’ strongest growth industry, with tons of new jobs for workers like home health aides and physicians’ office workers.
But the industries where employment remains below peak are too long to list—jobs remain scarce in the vast majority of subcategories, from logging to personal and laundry services. (There’s some overlap between the subcategories, though, thankfully not between logging and laundry.) Alas, that is to be expected. The Great Recession sacked the entire economy. Demand remains low. Employers are hesitant to add too many workers, too soon.
So it may be better to measure from the trough than the peak, looking for the industries that have had a jobs uptick since bottoming out. According to the BLS, a lot of sectors have seen a mild, tentative rebound. Businesses from railways to clothing retailers have taken back some of the workers they shed. And one chart looks like a big V, rather than a reverse checkmark, meaning strong jobs growth: “temporary help services.”
Despite the gains and the rebounds and the upticks, though, it all adds up to a fairly bleak picture: The jobs we’re adding, for the most part, aren’t great ones. The National Employment Law Project took a closer look at employment and jobs-growth data in February. What it found wasn’t encouraging. The advocacy group says that just 14 percent of recent job growth comes from high-wage industries. About half comes from low-wage industries. According to NELP’s report, restaurants and food services businesses, “especially” fast food outlets, comprised 7 percent of hiring. And most gigs, NELP found, came “from rapid hiring by the temp industry,” meaning the positions that often come without benefits, health care, or much income security.
Continue reading at: http://www.slate.com/id/2291534/