A new story is out that Young Men Are Working Less as Some Economists Think It’s Because They’re Home Playing Video Games and that may be evidence of the sharp intellect of young men. On the linked forum are some choice observations:
grasshoppa thinks the study is bunk but that maybe young men have seen a toxic mating culture that typically ends in divorce or otherwise triggers poisonous dynamics.
ErichTheRed thinks the video game connection is dubious but otherwise sees a culture that treats workers as disposable commodities. ErichTheRed further concludes companies can do better but don’t and young men who have seen generations of people giving 40+ years of their lives to a work culture that seems increasingly toxic has decided they’ll sit this one out.
grimfate wonders about changing gender distribution in work participation as an effect. Young men may prefer video games as their preferred opiate.
Anonymous commentator in their 30s posted that they can find a really good job but baby boomers are sticking with it longer (can’t retire or not ready to retire) thus blocking his generation from moving up. At the same time, this person has seen his friends destroyed by divorce in which savings, earnings, and investments are wiped out. Whichever way the tale goes, people become a shell of themselves through the work process.
Stormy Dragon thinks the researchers for the study possibly views the young men as stealing time from society.
Anonymous commentator #2 also in their 30s summarizes that there is no real achievement slaving away at the office just to be in your 50s and seeing nothing really there. You are probably better off living with less income and being happy.
Tyr07 looks at the work and cost of living situation and rhetorically posits the absurdity of calling the present situation living.
Snotnose says many young people have seen late 50s/60s really treasure the value of working hard. Those same older people discover the reality of getting shafted. The young people then say, I got better things to do.
Kiuas takes it to a macro level. Everybody has benefited by slave labor. When someone make $1 a day so you can buy it cheap at $10, that person getting the $1 and barely scraping by is a slave. You ignore this because you don’t see the wage slave everyday. You only see the cheap product on a shelf. The product can be shampoo, a smartphone, or a technology system that was outsourced. Policies that made that person a slave then comes to your backyard. You are so glad to have a job that you agree to be that slave. Everybody has participated. Companies are just trying to get more cash and don’t do morality. Young men see this situation and say, that is not for me. Meanwhile, we all find ourselves compelled to continue funding this enterprise with slave earnings.
Timothy2.0 relates that the obliteration of work-life balance is a factor. The upside of nearly killing yourself is close to none-existent. Young men have more information about what is going on and are making corresponding choices.
Many of the preceding observations are echoed in another article in which the question is posed, Is Logging Long Hours a Recipe For Burnout or the Only Way To Get Ahead? The answers in the article are provide useful insights about the way this society has changed. The overview is, if you have your own business, intense work behavior helps the business. When you are not a business owner, your return on effort as a workaholic can backfire tremendously. You will never be Mark Zuckerberg or Elon Musk, never, by putting the peddle to the metal for someone else. Never. Only an entrepreneur has that chance. I have personally worked at over 20 companies and I have learned from this. I’ve seen numerous directors, vice presidents, and other executive types encounter a true ceiling after hard work of an intense nature, much less anyone below director level. After decades of this type of working, you just resign yourself to your fate in this cycle and find yourself in seemingly endless a pre-retirement preparation. Unless you get smart and start a business.
A pattern in society exists. On the surface, things look okay (unless you are one of the thousands of sales people being laid off at Microsoft). Most of the cars on the street are not run down. Most people have a nice car. The clothes people wear are in good shape. People are well-mannered and acts of overt deviancy and brutishness are at an all-time low at an experiential level. People are more outwardly docile and compliant with civil authority and governance. A large section of society however are passively getting out from under the movements of normal society by recoiling into entertainment. They feel something or see something that doesn’t appear to be good. A tightening of control around people. Actions and a mindset that suffocates, squeezes people’s motivation to excel, retards their interest in doing more, and undermines their opportunities for future success. All of this was predicted and even communicated but the future of suppression and deprivation was just too bizarre to believe. Young people who have made the choice, I salute your intelligent behavior in distancing yourself from quiet malice.
On this 4th of July … are you really free? Well, a day off of work for those that work agonizing schedules is good. A day to play, relax and have relief is a good thing. A day to forget about a lot of this stuff or maybe go through a new cycle of mentally justifying it so you can go working tomorrow. That is America. A place where you have days that alleviate the intensity of the raw experience of living through the psychological malaise visited upon most in order to continue that experience through the years. Is that freedom with any real value?