More Than Half the Dutch Manage to Work Just Part-Time
Ronald Dekker, a labour economist at Tilburg University, says part-time positions enjoy "first-tier" status.
Citizens of the Netherlands are famously happy, almost as happy as Scandinavians, and it may be because they tend to favor working part-time jobs to full-time positions, at least when The Economist compared them to workers in other developed countries.
"On average, only a fifth of the working-age population in EU member states holds a part-time job (8.7 percent of men and 32.2 percent of women); in the Netherlands, 26.8 percent of men and 76.6 percent of women work less than 36 hours a week. Why?"
But surely there must be a catch. As a nation, America bemoans underemployment as though it's the new unemployment. Indeed, permanent part-time employment is a scourge we think we've inherited from the financial crisis and ensuing Great Depression.
Thanks in part to the Dutch government's efforts that bring women into the workforce while still providing enough flexibility to help them raise children if they care to ... part-time positions enjoy "first-tier" status.
Beyond the gap in salary that results from working part-time as opposed to full time, part-time employees tend not to receive benefits like health insurance, paid vacation, parental leave, and so on. And there's the rub, says Ronald Dekker, a labor economist at Tilburg University.
Thanks in part to the Dutch government's efforts that bring women into the workforce while still providing enough flexibility to help them raise children if they care to (rather than shipping them off to day care), Dekker says part-time positions enjoy "first-tier" status.
We've all heard horror stories of part-time employees purposefully kept just under the number of hours needed to acquire benefits like paid sick leave or health and dental insurance. Thankfully the Affordable Care Act is helping to remedy the situation for part-timers who can't get on their employers' insurance plans.
Promoting the legitimacy of part-time work has been the (full-time?) goal of Sara Horowitz, founder of the Freelancers Union that represents the needs and concerns of the growing independent workforce.
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Research by neuroscientists at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory helps explain how the brain regulates arousal.
The big day has come: You are taking your road test to get your driver's license. As you start your mom's car with a stern-faced evaluator in the passenger seat, you know you'll need to be alert but not so excited that you make mistakes. Even if you are simultaneously sleep-deprived and full of nervous energy, you need your brain to moderate your level of arousal so that you do your best.
A disturbing interview given by a KGB defector in 1984 describes America of today and outlines four stages of mass brainwashing used by the KGB.
- Bezmenov described this process as "a great brainwashing" which has four basic stages.
- The first stage is called "demoralization" which takes from 15 to 20 years to achieve.
- According to the former KGB agent, that is the minimum number of years it takes to re-educate one generation of students that is normally exposed to the ideology of its country.
When these companies compete, the people lose.
- When a company reaches the top of the ladder, they typically kick it away so that others cannot climb up on it. The aim? So that another company can't compete.
- When this phenomenon happens in the pharmaceutical world, companies quickly apply for broad protection of their patents, which can last up to 20 years, and fence off research areas for others. The result of this? They stay at the top of the ladder, at the cost of everyday people benefitting from increased competition.
- Since companies have worked out how to legally game the system, Amin argues we need to get rid of this "one size fits all" system, which treats product innovation the same as product invention. Companies should still receive an incentive for coming up with new products, he says, but not 20 years if the product is the result of "tweaking" an existing one.
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