Quitting, as an individual act of rebellion, remains just that. To be revolutionary it must be an action taken collectively. Do we have it in us?
by Antidote’s Ed Sutton
Once again it has been a stretch since you, dear reader, have heard directly from our writers collective. As we begin to feel your eyes on us, and as the number of eyes grows, we have been grappling a little with insecurity. As such, this essay represents a petulant determination to ignore the imagined pressure to “drop something big” and simply stick to what we’re good at. Although we have confrontational ideas, we are bound somehow to voice them calmly and quietly (though not always), and we find value in ponderous reflection and even some touchy-feely self-examination. Isn’t that what we all wish more people would do?
Transcribed from the 28 March 2015 episode of This is Hell! Radio and printed with permission. Edited for space and readability. Listen to the full segment:
“We have increased our wealth since the 1930s, but we have been exchanging that wealth for stuff instead of for time.”
Chuck Mertz: Live from London, our correspondent David Skalinder gives us a View from the Agile Left. David dreams of an agile and compelling ideology of the left…but that’s a quiet beat. So he usually reports on the nimble American right, the lumbering institutional left, and the confused frustration of everybody else on both sides of the Atlantic.
Today you’re talking about the laziness of working long hours.
David Skalinder: Yeah, I have this segment I’ve been saving for a rainy day. It’s something that I’ve been seeing a little more often in the mainstream press, and I think it’s interesting to look at it from a couple angles.
Die herrschende Klasse hat erkannt, dass eine zufriedene und produktive Bevölkerung mit frei verfügbarer Zeit eine tödliche Gefahr darstellt.
Hattest du jemals das Gefühl, dein Job wäre ausgedacht? Dass die Welt sich weiter drehen würde, wenn du nicht 8 Stunden deine Tätigkeit verrichten würdest? David Graeber erkundete das Phänomen der unsinnigen Jobs für unsere jüngste Sommerausgabe – jeder, der berufstätig ist, sollte sorgfältig lesen…
Transcribed from This is Hell! Radio‘s 17 May 2014 episode and printed with permission.
This is only an extended excerpt, edited for readability, and does not include the entire range of issues covered in author Melissa Gira Grant‘s interview with host Chuck Mertz; listen to the whole thing here.
“Most people are doing work they don’t feel really great about, and if they had other options would prefer to do something else—but we wouldn’t describe their boss as a pimp. We wouldn’t describe capitalism as their pimp.”
Chuck Mertz: Writer and journalist Melissa Gira Grant is the author of Playing the Whore: the Work of Sex Work. Good morning, Melissa.
Melissa Gira Grant: Hey there, thanks for having me.
AntiNote: With this post, we inaugurate a series we will revisit sporadically in the course of our work: One Year Ago.
Not to commemorate ‘big dates’ of significance in past and present struggles—there’s plenty of that already, and some of it is quite good—but as a way of refreshing our own memories about conversations that get submerged in the NOW! NOW! NOW! cacophony of internet discourse.
One year ago, our friend and comrade Deckard of the Permanent Crisis blog wrote a thoughtful response to a manifesto of sorts that sprang out of my (Ed’s) experience of the so-called Binz Riots of 3 March 2013 in Zürich.