On this episode of the It’s Going Down podcast, we speak with Robert Ovetz and Gifford Hartman, two long time anti-capitalist and class struggle researchers, who discuss the pandemic and how it has fundamentally changed the lives of everyday waged workers. Specifically, we tackle the rhetoric surrounding “unfilled jobs,” largely in the service industry, where capitalists are scrambling in some cases to offer workers higher wages, better benefits, and even pay for them to come in and fill out a resume because they are desperate to fill vacant positions, as many States prepare to fully reopen their economies.
the workers at this chipotle said no more exploiting us pic.twitter.com/a99FHWc5vq
— brands getting owned (@BrandsOwned) May 8, 2021
What is causing these jobs to be unfilled? Have workers simply gone into other sectors of the economy as the pandemic has raged on? Are they “striking with their feet”: refusing to take jobs that put themselves in harm’s way, or are they like the politicians claim, simply “lazy” because of recent stimulus checks and unemployment benefits?
We close our discussion by speaking about resistance in the workplace in the age of the pandemic, the rise of wildcat strikes, and also the recent failed attempt by business unions to carry out a union drive at Amazon. If current conditions have shifted things more in workers’ favor, then how can future struggles build upon this?