Labor's Pains

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The veiw from the air and the land in Las Vegas Nevada (original post)



The airlines are an interesting case and point. They pretend they give you perks - treat you like a king; as they nickle and dime you every step of the way and every other moment treat you like cattle forcing them to check yourself in, going through the screening and having fluids or aerosols thrown out because they forgot to pack it. At the same time they are pretending to treat them like kings. They have things like special lounges for executives and other bullshit faux luxury. The airlines charge for extra leg room, ear phones, blankets, too heavy bags, too many bags (two as people are expected to fly without luggage) pillows, and food. You can purchase boxes of miniature food for six dollars that are less than what they use to give their passengers for free, only not as good. All are pre-packaged and lilliputian small.

Once we landed we find that the hotels are like this too. We have to pay for the gym, the spa, the Internet. They put you in the high rollers club as they pick your pocket. The American buy into this illusion as they shovel money at these companies to pretend that they're more than what they are. At the same time they complain about having to pay taxes that are supposedly for the betterment of society as a whole. There is still this mentality of striking it rich and becoming one of the idle rich. Most of them won't even coming close to it but we support overpaying for things as being a sign that we can buy class like we do everything else.

The sea of illegals, or not so illegal workers that make these places function operate jusbeneath the surface. They are like worker bees as the Americans continue to have an inflated opinion of themselves as their jobs disappear and the closer their economic situations grow to the worker bees the more they pretend those people don't exist. They are the backboned that make this life possible.

What's wrong with this society when millionaires can't be billed, because they're the job creators, but they're going after waiters and waitresses (i.e. the service industry) for a percentage of the tips.

The girl with tattoos all over her arms, who appears to be in her early twenties and who works in the local burger bar. She says, "I can't imagine a day that I'll ever retire."

The truth is I know she's not lying. That's the problem with our retirement system. Is she ever going to support a retirement system when she feels there is no way she will ever have it and that society doesn't care about her?

The girl with the tattoos like Las Vegas because the company she works has to pay minimum wage even though she get tips. Back when she lived in Atlanta she made $2.15 an hour with tips. I think of the fight the politicians have about not raising the minimum wage. Who represents her? Is she just another worker bee?

The guy, who is an acquaintance of her's from the next restaurants, appears to be late twenties or early thirties. He is an ex-minor league baseball player. Now he is a waiter in what is closer to a high end restaurant. He says how they have to claim tips on their taxes. He almost seems to suggest they have to claim tips even when there really haven't collected them.

The girl with the tattoos says, "That sucks."

She then says she has never worked at a job where she has to do that. The guy seems to suggest that if he doesn't the IRS will really come after him.

This conversation happens when the guy running for president has stories all over the paper about hiding his money in three countries so he doesn't have to pay taxes. Which one performs the more vital service?

While when I want a burger or service at a good Italian restaurant I think I know which one I'd choose.

Bits and Pieces: There's a four bedroom in Las Vegas that you can buy for $90,000...a woman at the bus stop who has a house in the Hamptons, Las Vegas and California and was going to a luxury resort talks about how Las Vegas is about to "come back?"...I'm not so sure...One guy is a professional card player for minimum wage. He works eight hours a day for a casino filling in at games where they aren't enough players. Once there is enough players at the table he moves on. I never even heard of this job. He's about to be fired from his job because the casino is about to hair test their employees and he regularly smokes dope. He can't give it up. When he tries he's irritable and can't make a living. Yet he has a new iPhone that he's skilled at. He just can't make a living.

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