Monday, September 24, 2012

Two tier wage scales

This is my fourth post today and I wanted to stop writing. I can't, there is a flood of issues which I feel compelled to comment on.

Next up: Two-tier wage scales on the increase in Canada

Before continuing, see if you can spot the double-think.

Your left brain says:
“Wherever they have cost pressures, more people are trying this. And I think this time around it will take longer for these two-tier effects to disappear,” Prof. Verma said.
“Two-tier wages are one particular way to lower wages, and that may or may not continue over time. But this long-term effect of lowering the average wage so we are closer to our competition, that trend will continue.”
But your right brain says:
But Mr. Hargrove believes the deals are likely to evaporate over time as the economy improves and the labour market gets tighter, forcing employers to do more to attract new workers.
Here, we have an interesting conflict. There is a definite, and known trend towards lower wages so that we can compete. On this note, I find it interesting how it's rarely mentioned that we ourselves set the stage for this trend  with free trade deals which we praise as great out the other side of our mouth. Yet, at the same time.. a continual promise, hope.. dream? of the elusive improving economy.

What constitutes this improving economy? I'm not sure. It seems generally agreed upon by all sides, whether approvingly or not, that standard of living isn't going to be improving along with it (whatever *it* is - The S&P500?). For the standard of living to improve of course wages would have to increase but since we are in an admitted race to the bottom, they will not be increasing, they will be decreasing.

New workers? Yes, we'll be competing with them for lower wages too as temporary foreign workers become all the rage. No wonder Jim Flaherty insists there are no bad jobs: it's a motto for the future impoverished.

As with all austerity, it will be affecting the new entries and not the existing entitled. But hey on the *bright* side...
And if economic conditions don’t compel the change, he says internal dissent by lower-tier employees has pushed some U.S. companies to eliminate or at least shrink the gap. “There clearly is a backlash, no doubt about that,” he said.
We can always count on a little dissent.

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Richard Fantin is a self-taught software developer who has mostly throughout his career focused on financial applications and high frequency trading. He currently works for CenturyLink

Nazayh Zanidean is a Project Coordinator for a mid-sized construction contractor in Calgary, Alberta. He enjoys writing as a hobby on topics that include foreign policy, international human rights, security and systemic media bias.

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