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Why Europe's Laws On Vacations Are Better Than Your Wildest Dreams (and How Badly Americans Get Scr

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posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 04:45 PM
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Having happy, well rested, well traveled, well fed workers with rich family lives has been proven to increase productivity.
The opposite often produces disgruntled, frightened (to lose their job), cynical workers who are full of resentment.

Which would I rather have working for me?
The answer lies in what I truly want for my business - massive profits for me/board only, or moderate/good profits and a happy company. Unfortunately, it's all about the instant gratification for most corporations. Happy CEOs are far more important than happy production line workers. They can't afford bread? Let them eat cake!

Corporatism shouldn't be mistaken for capitalism any more than social programs should be seen as communism or even socialism.

I'm sorry if the 'temporarily inconvenienced billionaires' don't like to see people happy [it's the only way I can understand the common people supporting the corporatist agenda and 'laws' - they must all be 'temporarily inconvenienced billionaires.' Otherwise they'd be supporting legislation that's bad for them in the long term, and they can't all be that stupid, surely].

If one looks at a history book one will see that the last time the corporations were given control of a country it was by Benito Mussolini and his fascists. How did that work out?

Before that there was the 'empire building' of the British East India Company. How did those times work out for the common man in the street? That's what's happening in the USA. The corporations are running the show.
Nothing happens without someone making bank. It's penetrated into the legislative, executive, and judicial branches. It's all about making money for the corporations. Wars, laws, health, wealth, life and death. Someone makes a bundle. Not you. Not me. Not the 'temporarily inconvenienced billionaires.'

Don't be happy. It's unpatriotic, and someone might lose money.
Work as much as you can, don't get sick, and spend as little time raising your kids as possible. Your boss will appreciate it. You can die happy in the knowledge that you worked your fingers to the bone to make someone else richer. Don't regret missing your kid's first play or baseball game because you were working. Don't regret never having seen another country (they are obviously all rubbish, otherwise they'd talk about them on the news). Don't regret never having done the things the dreamed of as a kid. You worked. You worked harder than anyone.
Actually, you just worked LONGER than anyone, but let's not spoil the moment, eh?




posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 05:56 PM
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reply to post by Badgered1
 


Wonderful post. I don't really have much to add, as it says all it needs to be said in the first few lines.
I hope more people read it.... And then maybe DO something about it.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 05:57 PM
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What do you base "hardest working" on? Americans do work harder than they used to. We have to, to try to keep up with the economy. Remember the old movie working 9 to 5? I can't remember the last time I worked 9 to 5.

But minutes working per day, the typical scale they go by, the Unites States is only the 9th hardest working country in the world. Mexico is #1. Japan is 2nd. China is ahead of course, Canada is too.. and even New Zealand.

All I know is I HAD vacation time saved up.. I could just never take it. Which came in handy I guess, once I was laid off to meet a minority racial quota. I was able to cash in on that vacation time. Unfortunately, the IRS doesn't consider it "paid" work - they consider it a "gift" and tax it nearly 40%. BUT.. my State government says "Oh.. no, that's pay! You can't have unemployment until it runs out." So while it took me 3 and a half months to find a job, I could not collect a penny of unemployment, but I had a lot less money to live on.. since the IRS taxed it at the same rate they tax gambling winnings. Ain't America grand?


Even worse than working and vacations is unemployment. It's hilarious to hear people crying about lazy people collecting unemployment, when the U.S. has one of the WORST unemployment systems in the civilized world. Can you say brainwashed? We think we need to work hard or we'll get fired. When we are fired due to it not being our fault, we are taxed at gambling wages for the vacation we could not take, cannot collect unemployment, and THEN told by others who are lucky enough to be working to stop being lazy - you should just flush down 20 years of work experience and get a job at Subway, because it's the "right" thing to do. Yup.. brainwashed and loving it apparently.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 06:17 PM
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The system is a disgrace, even in Canada the two weeks off is not guaranteed. I worked a combined 7 years and only got 6 weeks of combined off time.

There is just no worker protection.

As for the TERDS who say Europe is in financial trouble because of vacations... Please don't be stupid. You think being 16 trillion in DEBT is a success story?



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 09:06 PM
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Originally posted by The X

Originally posted by tothetenthpower
reply to post by Asktheanimals
 


oh but that's socialism and isn't American, so no way you guys can have that...


Ah that's a loaded statement. Yes, Europe's social programs in some places are amazing, but are you willing to pay the extra tax to pay for it?

I sure am, most people aren't.

~Tenth


52% of the discretionary budget was spent on the military in 2011. medicare,mediacaid, food stamps, and all the other "social securities" and everything else was funded on 48% of the annual budget.
Your taxes could pay for so much more. if it wasn't being spent protecting corporate interests with military hardware.


Preaching to the choir here.

I'm all for paying for well functioning, equal funded (as in balanced cost in the budet) social programs.

Unfortunetly our governments do a better job of providing a crap service for usually, quite high costs. That problem is relatively easily solved if you cut military spending in the US. In other countries like my own, Canada, the budgetary problems aren't that simple.

Certainly solvable, but the US could start itself off in a great place, ahead of other nations, quite quickly.

~Tenth



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 09:12 PM
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With the absolute disdain towards unions I've seen on these boards from many Americans, this does not surprise me at all.
edit on 8-7-2012 by aaron2209 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 09:33 PM
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Well all I can say is, dont complain about Socialist Policies if you want the same deal as European workers. Remember, it took Trade Unions and Political parties many years to obtain the workers rights that exist in Europe plus two world wars.

If US citizens want the same rights as Europeans, then you had better get used to paying taxes.

As a comparison to some others who have stated what they have:

I work a 37.5 hour week (some weeks are days, some nights).
I am entitled to 41 days annual leave (this includes Bank Holidays)
I am entitled to 6 months sick leave at full pay, followed by 6 months at half pay should I become ill or injured.
Maternity leave is 1 year with job fully protected and paid. Paternity leave is about 4 weeks (I think).
I work 3 x 12.5 hr days (0730-2100), this can include weekends and Bank Holidays (which I get back as annual leave).
I am entitled to take paid time as study leave for mandatory/course training.
I am entitled to claim back any days whilst sick when I am on annual leave.
All hours worked after 2000 hrs till 0730 hrs are deemed as 'unsocial' and thus incur an extra payment.
In theory, I must have the minimum of 11.5 hrs off between shifts.
I am not allowed to work more than a 48 hour week.

I work in the UK for the Government, in the NHS ......... I am Nurse.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 10:41 PM
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Many people here in the US can only dream to have the schedule you have. In my opinion, your schedule is fair in that you work, but have time to spend with your family. The corporatists right wing supporters here would be the first people to call this unamerican. But the irony in it all is that they would all be the first in line to get jobs with such balance.


Originally posted by Wotan
Well all I can say is, dont complain about Socialist Policies if you want the same deal as European workers. Remember, it took Trade Unions and Political parties many years to obtain the workers rights that exist in Europe plus two world wars.

If US citizens want the same rights as Europeans, then you had better get used to paying taxes.

As a comparison to some others who have stated what they have:

I work a 37.5 hour week (some weeks are days, some nights).
I am entitled to 41 days annual leave (this includes Bank Holidays)
I am entitled to 6 months sick leave at full pay, followed by 6 months at half pay should I become ill or injured.
Maternity leave is 1 year with job fully protected and paid. Paternity leave is about 4 weeks (I think).
I work 3 x 12.5 hr days (0730-2100), this can include weekends and Bank Holidays (which I get back as annual leave).
I am entitled to take paid time as study leave for mandatory/course training.
I am entitled to claim back any days whilst sick when I am on annual leave.
All hours worked after 2000 hrs till 0730 hrs are deemed as 'unsocial' and thus incur an extra payment.
In theory, I must have the minimum of 11.5 hrs off between shifts.
I am not allowed to work more than a 48 hour week.

I work in the UK for the Government, in the NHS ......... I am Nurse.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 10:56 PM
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Originally posted by truthinfact



also worth noting, the entire european economy ist kaput. maybe its from all that "vacationing"

Actually, no. The countries with the healthiest social systems like Germany are doing great. The countries that are failing, like Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, did so because of unregulated financial markets.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 10:56 PM
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reply to post by SeekingAlpha
 


I agree.

I am not bragging or boasting of the workers rights that I enjoy. These were hard won over several centuries by previous generations.

There is always a fine line when it comes to workers rights etc and I think that now, at least here in the UK, we seem to have it about right, though it has leant a little to the employer during the past decade or so.

I am not one who works more than they have too, I much prefer my time at home or on holiday (vacation), hence why I chose to do the 12.5 hr day shifts. They make for a long day, but at least at the end of it, you know that it is a third of the working week gone.

I once spoke to an American Nurse and she told me that if I worked in the US, that my salary would be nearly double to what I earn in the UK. But, after reading what little time you have as your own and the hours you work, I think I will stay in the UK.

Do you still speak of the American Dream .................. it sounds to me more like the American Nightmare.



posted on Jul, 8 2012 @ 11:05 PM
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reply to post by BIHOTZ
 

No offense but look at Spain's economy, it's in the toilet. Small businesses can't afford to operate and grow if they have to pony up for the full timer and the guys who only work 15 hours to go on a 4 week holiday. I do agree that vacation time is important for personal and family well being but it should be more reasonable. For starters I think employers should not have to pay for part timers, that's just silly. I think 1 week is reasonable for the full timer but give them the option of extending it to two but without pay. I can't seem to understand the growing sense of entitlement in our nation and the world as a whole. The underachievers of society look at the people who have studied hard and are rewarded with higher paying jobs or done it the blue collar old fashioned way. They scream and cry that they should get the same rewards "more leiseure time ect." but they haven't earned it. Now I realize that not everyone is cut out to overachieve but should they get the reward without the effort? Social heathcare is a perfect example. Is it totally unreasonable for a person who has worked their butt of to put themselves through school and therby contributes to society to get a better standard of healthcare than a crack addict high school dropout?



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 01:13 AM
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Having read the different comments about the America/Europe difference, I have a few things to add.

Those Americans that point towards the pigs-Countries, do not understand how Europe's woes are a "localized" problem.

That sounds a bit odd, but the Northen and Scandinavian countries are doing fine.Low unemployment (6 á 7% at worst). Well funded amenities like pensions, social security, unemployment benefit etc. (And billions in savings-accounts).

This comes at a price. taxes!. a price that most pay without objections because we get to see and experience the diréct results.

The PIGS-countries, on the other hand, have a history of governmental corruption, poverty and Tax-evasion on a grand-scale by the higher income strata.
The biggest mistake the "Europhiles" have made, is the far too quick expansion of the Euro, and the accompanying urge of subsidising about everything they could think of, to get The PIGS up to snuff.....on paper that is.

Goldman-Sachs has played a rather dubious role in all of this. They "cooked the books" for Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy, so as to make their deficit seem to be at about 3% of GDP (the max deficit a country is allowed in the EU, despite France & Germany consistently violating that "rule")

Bottom-line: The Europhiles wanted Europe to be a power-player só much, that they closed their eyes for a painful reality: The South is Poor, has always been poor, and will stay poor for the foreseeable future. Nó amount of money-pumping is going to change that, because we are talking a complete and utter difference in "culture" and "mentality".Spain is the ónly southern country that did well afa deficit went, but got short-changed by the banks.

The North has always been keen on good bookkeeping,rules and laws, and pretty strict in enforcing those laws. Irritatingly so, by times. The South didn't care, as long as the elite paid their dues to the politicians, éverything was allowed.Damn the poor populus.

-Portugal,has been an economic basket-case basically since they lost their colonies.And is fruitlessly trying to fight corruption at the governmental and municipal level.
-Spain got the brunt of the housing-bust due to Brits and Europeans buying or having property built, but getting out of it when the bottom fell-out..
-Italy has been marred by a history of corruption, with a Maffia that was many times more powerful than the government.
-Greece? Greece was/is rotten to the core. It, basically, only has tourism and a tiiiny bit of agricultural produce to sustain itself. Ordinary citizen paid their dues and taxes, but ányone making morer than, say €35000.- made it a sport to NOT pay any taxes, and fleece the government for all they could. (A village full of "well-to-do"people, that ALL were "blind" -or said they were-, and received an extra bit of income towards "medical expenses" ánd a healthy bit of unemployment benefit.. true story, and an illustration what a mess Greece is..)

The Elite in Greece have been evading tax for as long as I can remember. That includes doctors, surgeons, high-level management etc. etc.
Greece should NEVER have been allowed entry to the single currecy, basta! But Brussels was far too eager to expand. At first out of the naíve sentiment that "a united europe will no longer have wars, and will work together towards a brighter future".

That, however changed in the "greed is good" 80's, and a trend started that culminated when the "Single-Currency" entered the fray.

The corpocrats took over and started to use Europe as a big stick, and their personal ATM, to beat the international markets. That was párt of the "Euro-thought" but nót the end-all. The idealism was still there, but got snowed-under by the same vile, hubris-laced attitude that brought the world-economy to it's knees: pure,unadultered GREED, topped-off with an unhealthy tendency towards sociopathology.

Seeing the current whupping The Right (the ones lusting the most after f.i. a single market/single currency, and unregulated markets) gets everywhere in Europe, I am confident it will all work-out pretty well in the end.
As usual, we will find a middle way, where commerce can do it's thing. Where regulation prevents things getting out of hand, etc.

The first signs are already there: Tobin-Tax is mostly a done-deal (to the mouth-foaming anger of the Bozo's at Main-Street London) Flash-transactions will be regulated and taxed. Banks will be under strict scrutiny. Currently the debate is about separating consumer- and business/investment Banks. Yes..Europe is re-inventing Glass-Steagall.. :p The current intransience by Cameron and his ilk is only delaying the inevitable.

We'll get there in the end. It takes time, and a bit of patience, and -most importantly- cool heads. Panicking, like the MSM apparently wants us to, won't help a bit.
edit on 9/7/12 by dutchmilpo because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 04:10 AM
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Just some info.
EU&US have the same tax rate..



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 04:14 AM
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reply to post by AstroD
 


There's one tax rate for the EU? How extraordinary. Where is this info?



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 05:35 AM
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There is no such thing as "a" tax-rate for the EU. It depends wholly on the country one lives in. Income-tax in The Netherlands is higher than GB, but lower than belgium. To name some.

There are different localized taxes for cars, food, transactions etc. VAT in GB is about 20/21% VAT in The Netherlands is 19% and 6% for food-stuff.

So, all in all, I fail to see where that "single tax" idea comes from. Orrr. It must be the assumption that some Americans have that there is""One" Europe... Where there are many nations, each with it's own, distinct character and history.

Even those that dream of a "federal state of Europe" aknowledge that as an important factor in what makes Europe "Europe" and not a cloned USA. Superficially our cultures (Europe/USA) look alike, but there are fundamental differences that are pretty hard to overcome.

Just one example: The role of Government.
Europeans do not mind the hand of Government in their wheeling and dealing, It may annoy them at certain points, but there is no deep resentment of Government. Americans on the other hand have an inherent distrust and sometimes resentment towards Government, hence f.i. the plethora of conspiracy-sites that stem from the USA.

It's a totally different state of mind.

For those that have a true interest in what "Europe" is all about, compared to the USA, I can advise "The European Dream" by Jeremy Rifkin. It's written pré-crisis, but the base-analisys of Rifkin is still spót on.
edit on 9/7/12 by dutchmilpo because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 06:04 AM
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Originally posted by Bilk22
Yeah vacations are why the Euros are going broke. You want to play, you got to pay.


Hate to give you the news, the US is broke as well.



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 06:06 AM
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>>
If US citizens want the same rights as Europeans, then you had better get used to paying taxes.
>>

Because, in the US, you don't pay taxes?



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 06:08 AM
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Just a little story in regard to the issue. When I joined the Swedish Army, I made my girlfriend (who is American) jealous by telling her that we were getting four weeks of paid vacation in our first summer of working in the Army. Turns out it wasn't that good an idea in our case because most of us lazed out and lost muscles or cardio, but it was a very nice surprise.


And for the record, Europe's economy might be blah, and so is the US', but Germany (with 40 vacation days a year) is the strongest economy in Europe right now. Just saying.



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 06:40 AM
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I do not know where the rest here worked, but at 50 years old, I can look back and say I have almost always had 1-2-3 weeks a year paid vacation where ever I worked. And I have worked for several different companies in the retail industry.

Generally, the first full year employed you start with 1 week... after 2-3 years you go to 2 weeks... after 5 years... 3 weeks. And after 10 years it 4 weeks...pretty standard.

I am on vacation even now.... with another week sometime in September. And because it is retail and our schedules are not just Mon-Fri.... you can manipulate the schedule and I walked away with 10 days off striaght with full pay.

Plus, I've never had a problem getting health care... even as entry level overnight stocker some 26 years ago. Most retailers have retirement plans, 401k, stock offerings

And I'm talking about grocery retail here... bagging groceries... stocking frozen pizzas... piling out lettuce... I have made a good living and have been very mercenary which is why I have worked for about 4 of the largest regional chains in the south east US.

Last year when our church sent a mission team to Mexico... no problem... asked off... planned ahead... was gone for 10 days then too...been to Hawaii, the Keys, weeks at the beach, back in 2005... we took 2 weeks and drove out to Monatana, Wyoming, and back.

Now I work for a national retail farm supply chain. I am the asst mgr... but the same benefit apply to all of my full time staff. Even my back door receiver just finished a week off paid and he has only been there about 6 months.

We are located in central NC... plagued with high unemloyment... rural area... farm, service industry, or get a good job driving into Raleigh or Durham... maybe we are very blessed I don't know.



posted on Jul, 9 2012 @ 07:50 AM
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I'm in the UK, and I often chat with my friends about how much better things seemed to be when we were kids growing up.

My dad, a miner, was the sole provider in our house when we were growing up. Six of us, mum, dad, my brother, two sisters and myself. His wage provided for food, gas, electric, water, local taxes, clothing, rent, insurance, ran a car, 2 weeks holiday to the coast every year, and treats and outings.
My mum stayed home and took care of the home and family and everything domestic. Us kids came home from school to a warm and gleaming home, hot home-cooked meal on the table, house smelled of fresh laundry, and quality family time.

Now? Smaller families struggle to provide the above even with two incomes. Both parents always at work, kids shoved in daycare being raised by strangers, or latchkey kids who come home to an empty house after school and hardly see mum and dad. A quick microwaved frozen meal in front of the tv before bed and no time for each other. And this is today's 'family life'.

Another few years and family life will be stamped out for good.



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