even if it is the case that i am in some way weaker or inferior to fellow workers,it is essentially the case that what happenned to me can indeed happen to anyone,when they become the weakest link in nay chain,or the pressure affects them more than others.whilst obtaining early medical retirement might rationalky be the bestt option for me given the limited range of options t this time,it is not a victory of any significance in asocial context,it is mereely making the syetem work for the least worst option and i do not criticise those who represented me,in any way in saying this.it falls on aspectrum of outcomes which must include the admirttedly far more negative outcomes of either compulsory or voluntary redundancies.during my lifetime,with the weakening of the notion and the redality of trades unionism certainly in britain in the last 30 or so years,the idea that i grew up with that redundancies were not simply the sale of your or my job but the sale at grossly undervalue of a job which could affect genarations,has shifted.the idea that a job that does not belong to the individual,particuar worker seems to have less traction.but it remains unnacceptable and its is devastating her under austerity and elsewhere.in greece something over a third of public sector employment will dissappear,and those left will live on less than 2/3 of their wages.what ever way we look at it is a disaster.there is something as well as the actual jobs we have to recover-or better still transfor everything sothat those who work are no longer exploited and we work creatively at all levels for human need not capitalist profit
for each job lost for whatever reason is impact not just on the individual but on whole families and social networks.it is relevant to say,perhaps again,that the day before my retiremet was agreed,my employers signed a protocal with the 2 major unions in the industry,to offset compulsory redunandancies in the grade below me against vacancies in another grade.that would have reduced 32 to 2 redundancies.its stil 2 too many but i suppsoe its better than 32.on the day my agreement was signed,32 redundancies followed-disproportionately amongst women and the so called ethnic minorities.i spoke with one such colleague not long after she had the news,which came the same day she had a difficult conversation with a manager.the impact was visible-she was not far short of tears and immediately worried about the impact on her son,her home and her wider family as well as her own prospects of new employment.redundancies are not numbers and statistics nor even outcomes-they are devastation for real human beings.they are unnacceptable.
as a sort of aside,occupy london stock exchange at st pauls were right-capitalism IS crisis-so why do our class,on which capitalism is based still suffer and pay.
i do not feel sorry for myself,especially in this context.i have a real,tangible positive impact on the quality of my life-an almost literal physicla burden was lifted from me.and since i have discovered in reddiscevering my sense of self,just how oppressive the job had become.that is an important observation because at sommany levels,that is what workers,academics,intelectual and reasearchers are saying-that labour and work is becoming more banala,meaningless,fractured,aienating and,meaningless and oppressive as well as exploitative.and it also is unavoidable that they have got rid of me,they have"cut their losses",they have finished with me and used me up.the benefit fo maintaining me in their employ is at best marginal.its frees me up in some ways to recover and to devote my energies to more important things but it also denies me the traction that goes with employment,although many on the left now challenge even that idea.it is at least contested.
i once held and for a long time the conditions i worked under were better than for many on the planet.i suppose i might remain of that opinion though i acknowledge it is more doubted and contested.so how does the grinding poverty in low wage,and porr conditisn fo the so called develping economies compare now with those in the advanced countries when the very changes with global capitalism are muddling the picture and mixing it?i do not know
what i do know is thate every single struggle needs uniting and linking.we need to fight efery single step of the way and to make the links,for these really are times when everything counts and international solidarity alongside every detail of struggle is important.
i believe it was mike davis who recently wrote in the new left review with prospects for 2112 in mind,that the future of the world could hang on the mobilisation and activity of 200 million workers in china.whatever the truth of that,if they are the detoator or the key,the rest of us have to be paying attention to make the arguments and the links and the struggle count everywere,all the time.or at some point perhaps the choice really is a society build for human need or the barbarism on a global scale that soem of us think we are already living in.