Ross: The real reason people don’t want to return to work

Oct 15, 2021, 7:16 AM | Updated: Oct 19, 2021, 11:28 am
(Photo by Lauren DeCicca/Getty Images)
(Photo by Lauren DeCicca/Getty Images)

We’ve heard that millions of workers are just ghosting their old jobs. They’re not coming back, and most of them are women.

It’s like an unorganized strike.

Over the summer, I heard a lot of commentary that the problem was those generous unemployment benefits.

For example, back in August, Laura Ingraham was on Fox saying it’s time to cut those payments off.

“What if we just cut off the unemployment?” she posited. “I mean, I’m talking about people who can work but refuse to work. The government is literally putting anvils, in many ways, on people’s shoulders, either through the mandates, regulations, and now free money. The piper eventually has to be paid.”

She implied those payments led people to make crazy excuses for staying home, like wanting to maintain a “work/life balance.”

“My mother is not with us anymore, but she worked from the time she was 12 during the Depression,” Ingraham said. “If she heard the self-care thing, I think her head would explode.”

Her guest that night was a businessman who took it one step further, saying he had a friend in the military who used to train military dogs.

“And they only feed a military dog at night because a hungry dog is an obedient dog,” he described. “Well, if we’re not causing people to be hungry to work, then we’re providing them all the meals they need sitting at home.”

Just the kind of guy you’d want to work for, right? Hard to imagine why he isn’t drowning in applications. Anyway, that was back in August.

Well, Laura and her guest got their wish. The extra unemployment benefits were cut off in September and most states elected not to continue them. Yet, millions of workers are still holding out.

So it appears as though they were wrong about employment benefits being the reason employees weren’t returning to work. Could it be that there are employees who somehow sensed that they were working for a boss who saw them as his dogs? Or had a boss who saw the idea of family time as some sissy excuse for laziness?

As Laura said, “The piper has to be paid.”

Except this time it’s the worker who’s the piper. Pre-pandemic, we know that salaries failed to keep up with company profits. Maybe employees were tried of getting screwed over. Maybe it’s not so much the “Great Resignation” as much as the “Enormous Middle Finger.”

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Ross: The real reason people don’t want to return to work