Thursday, 13 November 2008


Now I'm not trying to be flippant, I've been a freelance writer and performer for 25 years so I've had my fair share of anxious weeks and months wondering if I'll ever work again... but could we just stop for a moment and try and look at the current depressing unemployment figures from a different point of view?

Everyone is saying things are looking really bad for the economy, and for economies the world over, and of course economies are very big things that push and pull in all directions. But what I'm talking about is people. Individuals.

Now what I'm about to say goes against all my instincts as a lifelong Trade Unionist, and a believer that people should be paid properly for the work they do, but how about instead of making one person 100 per cent unemployed, why not make two people 50 per cent unemployed? I know, it's called job share.

These giant companies like BT and Virgin, for example, that are planning to shed thousands iof jobs. It shouldn't be beyond the realms of human capability for the people who run these companies to devise working situations where they could have two people working half-time, they're paying one less wage but they're not adding to the unemployment figures, they're putting one less person on benefits and giving everyone a chance to go out and do something useful in their lives - whether it's find anopther job, voluntary work, involvement in some local cause.

I know it sounds utterly fanciful and is so totally not thought through - this is, after all, a blog, so just be thankful I'm not writing 'that dude is so owt of tuch lol' - but if your own job is at risk which would you prefer - a 50 per cent pay cut plus 20 extra hours in the day, or a 100 per cent cut and 40 hours?

Oh well, back to comedy. Got bills to pay...

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