- McJobs and Workers -

Well, I disagree.

Posted by: Flora Tristan ( IWW, USA ) on August 06, 1998 at 10:20:44:

In Reply to: Are you for real ? posted by The Trolley Dollies on July 29, 1998 at 10:05:32:

: :: I think the whole thing would run much more smoothly, if the place was
: : self-managed and their was a democratic (non-bureaucratic) union in place to negotiate decent contracts with the franchise owner.

: ARE YOU FOR REAL ? There is no way a McDonald's could "self manage" ! If the crew were left in charge tomorrow, they'd all be sitting in the crew room with a large coke, watching TV, while the customers queued and queued ! Given the choice, noone wants to work hard. And you couldn't convince them that everyone will benefit in the long term by self managing - the majority of crew don't look further than next pay day.

Well, I disagree. I think that production--including, in this case, the production of food--should be democratically managed, not managed i an authoritarian way as it is today. I can understand why an authoritarian manager of today would be wary of such a proposal. However, I think it quite possible for workers to elect whomever they deem necessary to co:ordinate production as opposed to having a manager appointed by the boss as a wage-slave driver. BTW, the reason why this HAS to be done now is that the product of the workers labor in general is not controlled or owned by them. In the case of Macdonalds, the profits generated by the sale of burgers and services at the outlets are not shared by the people who actually do the work. Nope, these people are hirlings, bought and sold on the labor market, like so many cans of pork and beans. In a word, their skills are "commodities". I think that workers would be much more movtivated to do a good job, if they thought that they would benefit from that production. As it stands now, the only thing that movivates them is fear itself--fear of the manager, fear of firing, fear of losing their means of support....
To paraphrase FDR, "The only thing workers have to fear, is fear itself." Fear of getting organized in a democratic union is primary here.

: Tell us how self managing would work on the floor.

First thing I'd recommend is to rotate tasks.

Vote: 3 yes, 1 no. 1 abstention.

Take for example, -the trash area is stinking. Who decides who cleans it, how long it takes, what the standard should be ?
Mondays: Trolly Dollies do the trash, Tuesdays John etc.

It's the worst job in the store. If the crew managed themselves they'd spend the whole shift arguing about who was going to do it, and it would never get done.

Unwarranted assumption.

: We can tell you quite categorically that your lovely idea would be shot to shit in less than ten minutes if we tried it on the floor.

Thank-you for that self-serving assumption.


Flora Tristan

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