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jerryking : addictions   11

America’s hidden crisis: Men not at work - The Globe and Mail
MARGARET WENTE
The Globe and Mail
Published Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016

The United States’ biggest problem ... is more insidious. Millions of able-bodied men have dropped out of society – out of working life, of civic life, of family life. Many of these men belong to the Trumpenproletariat. How to re-engage them may be the biggest domestic challenge the country faces.

Political economist Nicholas Eberstadt calls these men “the unworking,” to distinguish them from people who want work but can’t find it. “America is now home to a vast army of jobless men who are no longer even looking for work,” he writes. “Roughly seven million of them age 25 to 54, the traditional prime of working life.” His new book, Men Without Work: America’s Invisible Crisis, is essential reading for this election cycle. “For every prime-age man who is unemployed today,” he writes, “another three are neither working nor looking for work.” Most of these men are less educated, and many, particularly blacks, have prison records.... in fact, the work rate has been in decline for two generations. What happened during those decades was a massive shift in cultural values.... “To the extent that non-work is contagious, it is likely to grow exponentially rather than at a linear rate.” If current trends continue, he expects that more than one-third of all men in the 25-54 age group will be out of work by mid-century. That is a truly terrifying prospect – as well as fertile soil for toxic populism.

At its root, the collapse of the working class isn’t so much economic as it is social, moral and spiritual. This means that economic remedies will only take us so far. Marriage rates for less-educated men have plunged – and unmarried men are far more likely to opt for unwork. The percentage of babies born to unmarried parents has soared. Working-class whites have largely abandoned church (while church attendance among higher-income whites has stayed relatively high). Family and community networks have dissolved [JCK: the fraying of what David Brooks would call, the "social_fabric"].
Margaret_Wente  unemployment  men  joblessness  working_class  social_classes  social_fabric  Larry_Summers  job_destruction  participation_rates  addictions  opiates  socioeconomic  habits  values  books  unworking  populism  social_crisis  moral_crisis  spiritual_crisis  cultural_values  whites  contagions  exponential 
october 2016 by jerryking
Those who focus on police reform are asking the wrong questions - The Globe and Mail
AMANDA ALEXANDER
Contributed to The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Jul. 29, 2016

The deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile underscore two truths about the United States: We make it difficult for people to get by and harder yet to care for each other. After decades of slashing welfare budgets and increasing investments in prisons, federal and state governments have charted a path for the country’s poorest: aggressive policing and incarceration. We’ve locked people out of the formal job market and criminalized their survival.

It is not coincidental that officers in New York and Baton Rouge killed Eric Garner and Alton Sterling, respectively, in the course of policing informal economies (selling loose cigarettes and CDs). We simply make life hard for people – until we extinguish it entirely....Each day, we require black people to risk their lives to be cafeteria workers, teachers, therapists. The United States demands impossible sacrifices from black people to sustain its economy, and has since slavery.

What does this have to do with police reform?

Very little. Reformers are asking the wrong questions. They have turned to increased police training and altered use-of-force protocols to end this nightmare. Fortunately, some among us demand another way. Young black activists are not just asking, “How do we make cops stop shooting us?” but instead, “What do our communities need to thrive? How do we get free?” They’re not begging for scraps; they’re demanding the world they deserve. If there’s a future for any of us, it’s in asking these questions, demanding fundamental shifts in resources and organizing like hell.....Meanwhile, cash-strapped cities continue to raise revenue from policing and fining the poor. And because of insufficient social service investment, Americans rely on police to be first responders to crises of mental health, addiction and homelessness.
policing  African-Americans  reform  informal_economy  mental_health  addictions  existential  foundational  homelessness  community_organizing  incarceration  institutional_path_dependency  structural_change  questions  Black_Lives_Matter  cash-strapped  cities  reframing  political_organizing 
july 2016 by jerryking
Internet Porn Nearly Ruined His Life. Now He Wants to Help. - The New York Times
JULY 6, 2016 | NYT | By SRIDHAR PAPPU.

As the session continued, he spoke less about pornography than about the need to take care of oneself, both physically and emotionally. He talked about developing good habits and routines, about changing one’s life in general.

When a health care worker asked about fatigue and how he believed it often led him to pornography, Mr. Rhodes told the man that he needed to take care of his own health as well.

“It’s like if you’re on an airplane flight,” Mr. Rhodes said, “and they say, ‘Oh, you have to put your oxygen mask on before assisting others with theirs.’ It’s because you’ll pass out trying to get a mask on to somebody else. You have to make sure you’re in a balanced spot in order to best serve other people, in order to best serve the world.”
pornography  addictions  mens'_health  habits  ruination 
july 2016 by jerryking
The Enduring Hunt for Personal Value - NYTimes.com
MAY 1, 2015 | NYT |By TONY SCHWARTZ.

Once our basic needs are met, we human beings arguably crave value above all else. We each want desperately to matter, to feel a sense of worthiness. ...There is a problem in that we can so easily be seduced into believing that generating more external value – whether in the form of wealth, status or even achievement — leads to a greater sense of internal value. Each of these, pursued as a means to ensure our value, delivers diminishing returns over time.

Any single-minded pursuit, unmoored to a deeper purpose, has the potential to take on the characteristics of an addiction. More and more is required to obtain the same high, and the compulsion of the pursuit prompts a growing sense of the despair and unworthiness it is meant to solve.
values  self-respect  Tony_Schwartz  workplaces  diminishing_returns  addictions  worthiness 
may 2015 by jerryking
David Carr: All the views he's fit to print - The Globe and Mail
JAMES BRADSHAW - MEDIA REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Dec. 12 2014
The darker chapters of his life are plainly detailed in his 2008 memoir, The Night of the Gun. In its 385 pages, he reports on his descent into an all-consuming cocaine addiction that derailed his journalism career, left him struggling to care for twin daughters born prematurely to a previous partner amid one of many binges, and ultimately sent him to six months of in-patient rehabilitation.....It is mid-August when we meet, and he has recently added an endowed professorship at Boston University to his day job at the Times, and will begin teaching his course – on making and distributing content, dubbed “Press Play” – in just a few weeks....students will be evaluated “as much by what you put in the margins of others’ work as you are for your own.”...Mr. Carr has leaped feet-first into journalism’s evolving digital playground. His chatty Twitter feed ranges from news to life at home and has amassed, at last count, nearly 462,000 followers. He reads long-form stories on Gawker and BuzzFeed.
David_Carr  digital_media  profile  NYT  books  courtesies  addictions  print_journalism  memoirs 
december 2014 by jerryking
If Not Now, When? - NYTimes.com
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
Published: February 22, 2011
What’s unfolding in the Arab world today is the mother of all wake-up
calls. And what the voice on the other end of the line is telling us is
clear as a bell:

“America, you have built your house at the foot of a volcano. That
volcano is now spewing lava from different cracks and is rumbling like
it’s going to blow. Move your house!” In this case, “move your house”
means “end your addiction to oil.”
Middle_East  uprisings  oil_industry  alternative_energy  Tom_Friedman  addictions 
february 2011 by jerryking

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