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where the small shopkeeper and small farmers have been squeezed out by Walmart on the one hand and Archer Daniels Midlands on the other

The life of a traditional small shopkeeper or small farmer is grueling. Frankly, as a choice of two evils, most people in the West today would find being a WalMart employee earning crap money far less unpleasant than being a small traditional farmer.  Heavy physical labour in the hot sun or freezing rain, day in, day out, is not most people's idea of a good life.  

There is absolutely no reason why the same sort of process which turned the industrial working class from horribly paid individuals working horribly unpleasant and dangerous jobs with insane hours to decently paid individuals working unpleasant jobs with decent hours can't work for the new service sector jobs which, as bad as they are, aren't as horrible as the industrial ones of a century earlier. What we need is government action and a new empowered union movement. Not that these are on the horizon, but reacting to that by romanticizing an even worse past is not helpful.

by MarekNYC on Sun Nov 7th, 2010 at 11:18:35 PM EST
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