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Debates Forum

  1. Subscriber invigorate
    Only 1 F in Uckfield
    21 Oct '13 12:23
    *According to an opinion poll carried out by the PEW Foundation earlier this year people in the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Czech Republic and Poland believe the Germans are Europe’s hardest workers.

    * The dissenting voice came from Greece, where people think that Greeks work the hardest.

    * The Greeks are, in fact, right. The average Greeks worker puts in 2034 hours per year, the longest in Europe. Only Koreans and Mexicans work longer among the 35 countries surveyed by the OECD.

    * German’s work 1393 hours a year, 28% fewer than the Greeks. Only the Dutch work less.

    * So why do people think that Germany is a nation of hard workers when it’s the Greeks who put in the longest hours?

    * National income depends on productivity and the size and quality of the labour force.

    * Productivity measures the efficiency with which resources are used. Germany is streets in this respect. It takes a Greek worker one hour and 41 minutes to produce what a German makes in an hour.

    * Productivity is the basic driver of prosperity; raising levels of productivity is the holy grail of economic policy.

    * Workers in rich countries tend to work fewer hours each year than workers in poorer countries. The causation on this probably works in both directions. As incomes rise people tend to trade pay for leisure time. And workers who avoid long hours are probably also more productive when they are at work.

    * The US is the conspicuous exception to this rule. In America productivity is high and people put in long hours. This may reflect the fact that, since the 1970s, rising levels of US GDP have not improved real incomes for a large proportion of people on middle and lower incomes - Middle America works hard because incomes are not rising.

    Taken from Ian Stewart - Chief Economist Deloitte.

    So where would you like to work most?
  2. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    21 Oct '13 12:54
    Originally posted by invigorate
    *According to an opinion poll carried out by the PEW Foundation earlier this year people in the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Czech Republic and Poland believe the Germans are Europe’s hardest workers.

    * The dissenting voice came from Greece, where people think that Greeks work the hardest.

    * The Greeks are, in fact, right. The average Gree ...[text shortened]... .

    Taken from Ian Stewart - Chief Economist Deloitte.

    So where would you like to work most?
    "Only the Dutch work less."

    The Netherlands sounds like a winner to me.
  3. 21 Oct '13 13:02
    I'd like to live and work in Sweden based on what friends who now live there tell me. Sounds like the land of Milk and Honey despite those long, cold and dark months.
  4. 21 Oct '13 13:03 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by rwingett
    "Only the Dutch work less."

    The Netherlands sounds like a winner to me.
    in terms of quality of life it is the Netherlands then the rest of the world... and the shops open at 10 too... so easy choice.
  5. 21 Oct '13 13:19
    Originally posted by rwingett
    "Only the Dutch work less."

    The Netherlands sounds like a winner to me.
    These "hours worked"-figures are deceptive, because they depend largely on emancipation. In the Netherlands, a much greater percentage of people work than in Greece, but they work fewer hours per worker on average. This is mainly because of the high number of mothers who work part-time jobs (the same women in Greece are sitting at home freeloading and are thus not counted in the figure). Having said that, having a small work week is probably something we ought to strive for as a society - I mean, isn't that the whole point of modern technology? Increasing productivity, so we don't have to work as much and get to do more things that are fun, rewarding and/or interesting?
  6. 21 Oct '13 13:29
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    These "hours worked"-figures are deceptive, because they depend largely on emancipation. In the Netherlands, a much greater percentage of people work than in Greece, but they work fewer hours per worker on average. This is mainly because of the high number of mothers who work part-time jobs (the same women in Greece are sitting at home freeloading and a ...[text shortened]... don't have to work as much and get to do more things that are fun, rewarding and/or interesting?
    Now you are talking Kazet!!! It seems strange to me that in modern society with all the technology, we have to work overtime and or two jobs to make ends meet. What I suspect is happening here is that the cost of living just keeps going up and folks have to sell more of their time to keep up with it. What is the average work week in Lapland?
  7. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    21 Oct '13 13:47
    Originally posted by joe beyser
    Now you are talking Kazet!!! It seems strange to me that in modern society with all the technology, we have to work overtime and or two jobs to make ends meet. What I suspect is happening here is that the cost of living just keeps going up and folks have to sell more of their time to keep up with it. What is the average work week in Lapland?
    As long as technology is privately owned, it will never be used in a socially progressive fashion. Instead of using technology to reduce the number of hours everyone needs to work, it is instead used to reduce the number of people needed to keep the technology working. This keeps a reserve pool of unemployed labor on hand to depress the wages of those who do have jobs.
  8. 21 Oct '13 13:48
    Originally posted by joe beyser
    Now you are talking Kazet!!! It seems strange to me that in modern society with all the technology, we have to work overtime and or two jobs to make ends meet. What I suspect is happening here is that the cost of living just keeps going up and folks have to sell more of their time to keep up with it. What is the average work week in Lapland?
    I'm not sure about Lapland, or Finland. Personally I work about 30-35 hours a week with five weeks of paid vacation. I come to work as I please; my boss is just interested in results (most people aren't as fortunate to have such flexible working hours though).

    I have always found it odd that Americans find it necessary to work two jobs. I've never met anyone who works two jobs (although working overtime is common for high-paying corporate jobs). Shouldn't one full-time job be enough to make a decent living? Why can't Americans agree on a system where people aren't forced to abandon their families for most of their time?
  9. 21 Oct '13 13:52
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    I'm not sure about Lapland, or Finland. Personally I work about 30-35 hours a week with five weeks of paid vacation. I come to work as I please; my boss is just interested in results (most people aren't as fortunate to have such flexible working hours though).

    I have always found it odd that Americans find it necessary to work two jobs. I've never me ...[text shortened]... s agree on a system where people aren't forced to abandon their families for most of their time?
    It is an exaggeration at best to say Americans abandon their families. I live in the United States and most people simply do not work that hard.
  10. 21 Oct '13 13:57
    Originally posted by quackquack
    It is an exaggeration at best to say Americans abandon their families. I live in the United States and most people simply do not work that hard.
    I didn't say most people work two jobs. I questioned whether any people should work two jobs. I mean: if they want to, that's their choice, but a single full-time job of any kind should be enough to make an adequate living and provide for a family.
  11. 21 Oct '13 13:57
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    I'm not sure about Lapland, or Finland. Personally I work about 30-35 hours a week with five weeks of paid vacation. I come to work as I please; my boss is just interested in results (most people aren't as fortunate to have such flexible working hours though).

    I have always found it odd that Americans find it necessary to work two jobs. I've never me ...[text shortened]... s agree on a system where people aren't forced to abandon their families for most of their time?
    Yes we have an odd system here. Family time does suffer. I wish I could go back to a 40 hr week. I do get a lot of days off in a row, but the average week is still over 60 hrs for me. I have had some weeks as high as 85 hours. One full time job should be enough in my opinion.
  12. 21 Oct '13 14:11
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    I didn't say most people work two jobs. I questioned whether any people should work two jobs. I mean: if they want to, that's their choice, but a single full-time job of any kind should be enough to make an adequate living and provide for a family.
    It really depends what you do. There are jobs that simply do not produce enough to be compensated to provide for a person and their family and all their wants.
  13. 21 Oct '13 14:24
    Originally posted by quackquack
    It really depends what you do. There are jobs that simply do not produce enough to be compensated to provide for a person and their family and all their wants.
    And I think that it shouldn't depend on what you do.
  14. 21 Oct '13 15:03
    I love the weather here in Cape Town but I would move to Europe or the US given a chance because my income would more than double for the same amount of work.
    I don't care how many hours the average worker puts in, I only care how much I get paid for my skills, what the cost of living is, and what the quality of living is. I currently accept a lower salary than I am worth because my current job lets me work from home. I know people who spend 4 hours a day in traffic.
    One should also consider the costs and quality of education and health. I believe Europe would beat the US on those scores.
  15. 21 Oct '13 16:24
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    These "hours worked"-figures are deceptive, because they depend largely on emancipation. In the Netherlands, a much greater percentage of people work than in Greece, but they work fewer hours per worker on average. This is mainly because of the high number of mothers who work part-time jobs (the same women in Greece are sitting at home freeloading and a ...[text shortened]... don't have to work as much and get to do more things that are fun, rewarding and/or interesting?
    " Having said that, having a small work week is probably something we ought to strive for as a society - I mean, isn't that the whole point of modern technology?"

    That view might differ among individuals in different nations and cultures. Some might view it as an opportunity to relieve females and children from the necessity to work. Others might choose increased earnings and materialism. Other might take your view. If one's work is likeable and self satisfying, it isn't drudgery and shorter hours may not be desired.