The Great Resignation is a recent term used to describe the somewhat* surprising overall reluctance of ‘people’ to go back to work. Economists are trying to figure it out. Why is there a labour shortage all of a sudden? (* it is not surprising to me)
A lot of surmising and guessing have postulated a few theories such as ‘Covid burnout’, too generous unemployment/pandemic benefits and the like. But those are short term influences. I think it is a bit deeper in the bone than that. I think there has been a measurable perspective or paradigm shift and a catalyzing moment that rocked the status quo thinking.
In other words, there are a lot of pressures out there and they have, over time, created a mountain of ennui and despair amongst the vast majority of people. Then we hit a tipping point for that slag-heap resulting in lack of commitment to the system, to work, to the establishment, institutions and especially government. We have collectively maybe* lost the faith? (*as you know, I have definitely lost faith in the system – it is unsustainable at the very least)
The buildup of this fuel-for-depression has been ongoing since maybe the 1950’s? And maybe Vietnam was the first match thrown….? You know? The hippy anti-establishment movement that eventually petered out? Anti-materialism that morphed to ‘greed is good’?
Oddly, I think Trump (corrupt, lying, rich pig succeeding) was the first match lit that caught fire in this era, Covid was like oxygen on the flame and the immense, aging, hoary, rotten ‘system’ is the fuel source. Those three elements combined with the steadily encroaching climate threat, emergence of China as an enemy and, oddly, the simple aging of the baby boomers and we now have the perfect storm. A perfect storm of confusion, antipathy and fear?
No one wants to venture outside anymore. And, if we do, we want to venture really far and by ourselves outside into nature and not go to the office or the shopping mall.
The Great Resignation may just be the Great Awakening……?
I have had a good work ethic, eventually morphing into a typical work ethic and finally I achieved a GET OUT ethic. I have been a good worker bee, drone and I still do stuff. I write and carry heavy things for instance. Build sheds. But I checked out of the establishment mentally and spiritually 20-something years ago and physically 18 years ago. And I had been suspicious of the system for a long time. I like to contribute to my community and friends but I’d prefer to do it on my own terms and, fortunately, being well paid for it is not important. I work out of interest not acquisition.
But I bring all that up (about me) because I did not want to ‘go to work again’ and my financial situation did not determine my decisions. I simply and quietly resigned (easy to do if you work for yourself). I quit the rat race. But, oddly, I also experienced an awakening, an epiphany, a paradigm shift. I learned to love nature. I now love the forest and the sea way more than anything societal. I do not need a bigger TV or a newer car. I do not like restaurants or canned entertainment. I don’t like anything about the city. I have changed.
The point is: I changed early but I think it is the same kind of change that the Great Resignees are feeling today. I think the Great Resignation is the Great Awakening and, even tho we will still have to work to consume, the rat race will be slower, the merry-go-round much easier to get on and off of and the ladder of success will become a step-stool.
Well, let me re-phrase that: those lifestyle choices will be chosen and forced on us if we are going to survive.
Once again it seems I am to follow along in your wake JD. I retired from my old Life, my big city Life, 6 days after I was suitably able. We would have been here sooner but had to wait for the wife to complete her schooling for acupuncture, which she did near FULL Time while she worked FULL Time, but once that was done… We got outta Dodge pretty asap. It wasn’t really due to an impending Doom or any such, just that this was the Life we wanted, but we did cross the country ‘During the Time of COVID’, as it started, which was ‘different’ and unpleasant but we have ZERO regrets and have never really looked back. We might tweak a couple of things if we could go back and do it all again but the outcome would be the same. THIS is where we wanna be. Home. And we do feel we are fairly well situated for IF the World ends. And we will just get better suited as time goes, and the gardens grow. It is a bit of a sad thing tho that I am getting older, aka ‘Old’.😕☹🥺 but I’d rather do so here than anywhere else… so far.😉
I’m out of touch with the news, Dave, but this new apparent phenomenon would send me down the rabbit hole looking for info on whether the impact is being felt most in particular age cohorts or industry sectors, or is it across the board. Also, how has this affected net employment? Are people moving to other jobs? There must be a swag of people bringing forward their retirement rather than return to the “office” (e.g.. teachers, health professionals), while there will be the unvaccinated who work in occupations where vaccine mandates apply. Nevertheless, choosing to resign is still a luxury for many. In Oz, cost of housing is displacing a great many people and this has meant they can no longer find suitable accommodation in reasonable commuting distance to their workplace.
I didn’t research much….. a few headlines, a few articles, a few Stats Can reports – that sort of thing but it is clear that the restaurant industry is hard hit as are the retail stores and small businesses that generally pay lower and higher less ambitious people as a rule. In other words, those who worked for minimum wage or similar are still staying OUT. More and more healthcare workers are claiming some kind of leave or being locked out due to their vaxx position. That is likely shorter term but currently hitting the system. And, of course almost all public service workers have an anti-vax contingent and so they are OUT. Personally, I ‘feel’ it is more the senior contingent, those who need a few extra bucks to survive, those who were just holding on and waiting for a reason to retire and the rest of the oldies….they just said, “That’s it. I’ll get a benefit, then the pensions and that’s gonna have to hold me til they carry me away.” Youth are also in the same boat.
But all of them – whether they want to go back or WILL want to go back have to be questioning their motives. The rat race is not a fun place.
Did you read about the Nanaimo restaurant that has a Human Rights judgement handed down against them ?
Seems they had a Trans server that constantly complained of other staff harassment and was eventually let go supposedly for substandard work and attendance.
The restaurant now has to pay tens of thousands for not dealing with the complaints.
This may put them out of business…. for not using correct pronouns.
Why would anyone owning a restaurant want to deal with the bureaucratic nightmare of hiring ci- tri-bi staff any more….because these staff are walking talking Human Rights lawsuits waiting to happen after any perceived insult or slight.
Open a kitchen and have drivers deliver take out.
Just be glad you don’t work for govt any more Dave.
A slap on a backside might have you in Kangaroo Court.
Unfortunately we still need money for staples and such things as building supplies. To quote a phrase “I work to live not live to work” has more meaning now. People forget that there was a labour shortage before covid hit us. I read that the world population will peak in 2050 when we will need to be sustainable not growth motivated as we are now. Somewhat easier for us retired folks to step back or step away. We just finished a 2 week RV (rental) trip through our north country, never ceases to amaze me how beautiful BC and the Rockies are. Judy said she could live in the RV (a pickup F350 with a camper on top). Reminded her of our years on the Sailboat (homebuilt).
Love the outdoors.
Yeah, I feel the same way….I could live on a boat again (ocean) and I could definitely RV more (if the US was not in the way) and I have a primordial memory/instinct to keep an eye out for a perfect cave somewhere – caves appeal, too. Go figure. But for the sake of beauty, health, safety and Sal’s quilting habit, our own home OTG is still #1 for us. I have always known that Judy was basically a travelin’, hippy-chick at heart.
I spoke with someone the other day about this.
I think Covid has just exacerbated the Boomer cohort’s retirement.
Tens of thousands of people per week are retiring across North America because they’re either old enough or have had it with Covid and all the BS.
I know very, very, very few people who actually enjoy their jobs and they are usually self employed.
EVERY person I talk to that works in govt or a large company detests where they are and the endless HR horsesh!t they are forced fed on a daily basis.
They cant wait for the magic retirement date.
( I had two govt workers hand me their business cards with (he, him, they) in brackets after their names. Imagine the cost of that ridiculous pc gesture).
Youger workers with 10 years or less at a position have had Covid time off to realize….they cant handle 30+ more years of it and are quitting.
Add in the complete lack of encouragement for the training of Blue collar workers and you have a “perfect storm” of mass retirement, legions of young workers that are showing no allegiance to the politically correct cesspool of gender identity and all the Human Rights Tribunals that entails…..
I received a voluntary census from the govt for their employment training and hiring statistics 4 weeks ago.
Seems they finally realize…..they have no young blue collar workers in the work force……
Completely voluntary census.
I opened it and was shocked.
ALL the questions were pc related.
“How many First Nations do you have employed?”
“How many women do you have employed?”
“How many gender fluid employees do you have?”
How many hours do they work?”
Do they speak any languages other than English?”
On and on and on and on it went.
ZERO questions on training, apprenticeships, physical ability, type of work,
ANYTHING a person (me) would want to know if I was interviewing someone to do the hard physical job that is expected of them.
Its all about feeling good about this endless pc tightrope we are all expected to walk ….while supposedly making some sort of profit.
I deleted it 4 weeks ago.
EVERY week we are being hounded by the govt to please , please, please fill out this census.
Last week they sent another request and stated….
“Due to the low participation rate for this census we are extending it for another month.”
Hell will freeze over before I participate in a completely bureaucratic back slapping session on how wonderfully all this pc horseh!t is.
The PC crowd have created this.
Now they get to live with it.
As you know, I am a pinko Greenie and I have lived very much a ‘good-person’ life (safe for punching more than a few people in the face). I was never a practicing PC proselytizer but I have come to see SOME corrections that needed to be made and I am careful to correct myself if I think myself ‘sounding like’ a racist or sexist or being demeaning. But there was NOT a lot to correct. Nevertheless, this recent explosion of PC nonsense is more than irritating, it is indicative of being misdirected and a colossal waste of time. Teasing and cracking jokes with folks is a ‘way of familiarity’ and 99% of the time it is harmless. Guys on a jobsite ‘joke and tease’ each other all day long. When guys on the jobsite insult or call you a name, it is team building, a form of acceptance. If it is ever anything else than that, well, the punch-in-the-face fixes that. And there the topic should rest. I am not as angry as many over all this but I am on your side. Enough already. And do not get me started on all that is now considered sexual assault or harassment. That’s just insane! Allegations? ALLEGATIONS destroying lives and careers!!!! That is criminal and way worse than any indiscretion of words and gestures of attraction. Bottom line: I agree with you.