Jean Lievens: Sharing Economy Precariat — Brokering Labor to the Bone — While Neglecting True Costs and Redesign

Jean Lievens

Jean Lievens

Check App. Accept Job. Repeat.

In the Sharing Economy, Workers Find Both Freedom and Uncertainty


Ms. Guidry, 35, earns money by using her own car to ferry around strangers for Uber, Lyft and Sidecar, ride services that let people summon drivers on demand via apps. She also assembles furniture and tends gardens for clients who find her on TaskRabbit, an online marketplace for chores.

Her goal is to earn at least $25 an hour, on average. Raising three children with her longtime partner, Jeffrey Bradbury, she depends on the income to help cover her family’s food and rent. That has become more unpredictable of late. Uber and Lyft, her driving mainstays, recently cut certain passenger fares. Last month, TaskRabbit overhauled the way its users select their helpers; immediately after the change, Ms. Guidry’s stream of new clients dried up.

“You don’t know day to day,” she said. “It’s very up in the air.”

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Phi Beta Iota: Anything less than a dollar a mile (50 cents for wear and gas, 50 cents for labor, home base door and return) is a losing proposition — to clear $25 an hour one must drive at least 50 billable miles in that hour. To make the $50,000 a year that $25 an hour would normally add up, one must have eight full revenue hours. Very few people achieve this, dog walkers being a possible exception. There are two sharing economies — perhaps many more. The first leverages existing assets and created variable income increases. The second leverages labor, and appears to be a losing proposition for most. What we see is a dearth of analytic models and a dearth of data — we see a desperate need for the rethinking and redesign of entire communities and cities to achieve cost of living reductions on the order of 50%, while optimizing the time-energy composition of the constituent individuals in any given community.

Berto Jongman: Child abuse scandal raises disturbing questions about UK establishment

Berto Jongman

Berto Jongman

Child abuse scandal raises disturbing questions about UK establishment


The UK’s child abuse scandal, rooted in the media, Westminster and the Royal Family and personified by serial abuser and BBC personality Jimmy Savile, has been shocking enough. But far more insulting to the victims, the nation and the world is the Cameron government’s attempt, in early July, to institute two separate child abuse inquiries led by establishment figures who, due to family and work connections, immediately faced suspicions of possible conflicts of interest.

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Berto Jongman: The Costs of War — Human Costs, Economic Costss, Social + Political Costs with Alternatives and Recommendations

Berto Jongman

Berto Jongman

Over 350,000 Killed by Violence, $4.4 Trillion Spent and Obligated

The wars begun in 2001 have been tremendously painful for millions of people in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan, and the United States, and economically costly as well. Each additional month and year of war adds to that toll. Moreover, the human costs of these conflicts will reverberate for years to come in each of those four countries. There is no turning the page on the wars with the end of hostilities, and there is even more need as a result to understand what those wars’ consequences are and will be.

The goal of the Costs of War Project has been to outline a broad understanding of the domestic and international costs and consequences of those wars. A team of 30 economists, anthropologists, political scientists, legal experts, and physicians were assembled to do this analysis. Their research papers are posted and summarized on this website.

We asked:

  • What have been the wars’ costs in human and economic terms?
  • How have these wars changed the social and political landscape of the United States and the countries where the wars have been waged?
  • What have been the public health consequences of the wars?
  • What will be the long term legacy of these conflicts for veterans?
  • What is the long term economic effect of these wars likely to be?
  • Were and are there alternative less costly and more effective ways to prevent further terror attacks?

Some of the project’s findings:

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SchwartzReport: 25% of Adults World-Wide Enjoy Full Employment

Stephan A. Schwartz

Stephan A. Schwartz

This very important trend is virtually invisible. It’s not that the data is unavailable, as this report shows. It is that it is not discussed. But if only 25 per cent of the adults in the world are employed full-time that means three quarters aren’t. A major predictor of social ! unrest. Click through to see the important charts.

Only 1.3 Billion Worldwide Employed Full Time for Employer
Jon Clifton and Ben Ryan – The Gallup Organization

WASHINGTON, D.C. — About one in four adults worldwide — or roughly 1.3 billion people — worked full time for an employer in 2013. Gallup’s Payroll to Population (P2P) rate, which reports the percentage of the total adult population that works at least 30 hours per week for an employer, has not grown since 2012.