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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Corporate America throws out the over 50 worker with the trash

This last week Spirit AeroSystems , which has a plant in my home town of Wichita, KS, announced  last week that it was it is laying off approximately 360 salaried personnel. Among the various types of people they focused on were its aging workforce, of which 30 % were between 50 to 59 years old, and would soon be eligible for retirement.
Just a few years ago, many CEO’s, according to The Washington Post, were calling for raising the retirement age to 70. But here is the catch: Most of these people don’t actually want to hire or keep on people who are past the age of 50. So what are these potential workers supposed to do between the age of 50 and 70? They may be fit enough to work, but corporate America doesn’t want them around. Perhaps our corporate masters just want them to sit around for 20 years until retirement age. Of course most will starve and die off by then, but that may be the actual plan.
According to Yahoo Finance, unemployed and those of 50 and older are now living in an economy where employers just don’t want them. According to that article those over 50 are facing a jobless future.
The Article makes it clear:
For those over 50 and unemployed, the statistics are grim. While unemployment rates for Americans nearing retirement are lower than for young people who are recently out of school, once out of a job, older workers have a much harder time finding work. Over the last year, according to the Labor Department, the average duration of unemployment for older people was 53 weeks, compared with 19 weeks for teenagers.
There are numerous reasons — older workers have been hit both by the recession and globalization. They’re more likely to have been laid off from industries that are downsizing, and since their salaries tend to be higher than those of younger workers, they’re attractive targets if layoffs are needed.

One of the biggest changes in the new economy is that our corporate masters no longer value loyalty. Today’s workers can be thrown out as easily as yesterday’s trash:
“The contract used to be, ‘I am a loyal employee and you are a loyal employer. I promise to work for you my entire career and you train, promote, give benefits and a pension when I retire.’ Now you can’t count on any of that,” Nadya Fouad, a professor of educational psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee said. “The onus is all on the employee to have a portfolio of skills that can be transferable…..

….. And even more, “they should know the problem is not with them but with a system that has treated them like a commodity that can be discarded,” said David L. Blustein, a professor of counseling, developmental and educational psychology at the Lynch School of Education at Boston College, who works with the older unemployed in suburb of Boston. “I try to help clients get in touch with their anger about that. They shouldn’t blame themselves.”

The bottom line is that there is no solution being sought for those over 50 and looking for work. Reality is that right now our society just doesn’t care. The Yahoo article offers absolutely no suggestions or hope at all:

But the reality is that the problem of the older unemployed “was acute during the Great Recession, and is now chronic,” (Susan Sipprelle, producer of the Web site and the documentary “Set for Life”) said. “People’s lives have been upended by the great forces of history in a way that’s never happened before, and there’s no other example for older workers to look at. Some can’t recoup, though not through their own fault. They’re the wrong age at the wrong time. It’s cold comfort, but better than suggesting that if you just dye your hair, you’ll get that job.”

As a person at the age of 58 I would like to find a new full time job. I’m years away from retirement. But so far my prospects suck. The one bright spot in my career is this blog. It is the only outlet I have for a system that takes everything it can and gives back nothing. Our corporate masters have made it clear they don’t care about older workers and the reality is, they really don’t care about any of their workers. We are like modern day surfs for corporate masters who see themselves as modern day aristocrats who just don’t give a damn about anyone but themselves, and with all the new high tech tricks they have developed to minipulate elections to their advantage, they believe they are beyond the reach of any workers wrath. They figure there is nothing the American worker can do if they are treated badly.
Those as myself will continue to look for the Achilles' heel that will eventually bring down these corporate tyrants. As for those as myself—we have little else to do. 

-សតិវ អតុ

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