July 18, 2019

Archives for November 2, 2017

Whatever Happened to Working for a Living? (Continued)

“Politically, every transformation has begun
with a repudiation of the certainties of the previous age.”

– Economist Guy Standing

Last time, I quoted at length from economist Guy Standing’s analysis of how the notion of working for a living has historically fared under the social democracy and neoliberalism economic models. Prof. Standing believes that, as a result of the developments chronicled there, a new class system now dominates the working world. Again, I’ll quote from his book The Corruption of Capitalism (2016):

Globalization, neo-liberal policies, institutional changes and the technological revolution have combined to generate a new global class structure superimposed on preceding class structures. This consists of a tiny plutocracy (perhaps 0.001 per cent) atop a bigger elite, a “salariat” (in relatively secure salaried jobs), “proficians” (freelance professionals), a core working class, a precariat and a “lumpen-precariat” at the bottom. The plutocracy, elite, salariat, and proficians enjoy not just higher incomes but gain most (or an increasing part) of their income from capital and rental income.

The three classes below them gain nothing in rent. Indeed, increasingly they pay rent in some form to the classes above them. First, there is the shrinking proletariat, relying mainly on labour in stable, mostly full-time jobs, with schooling that matches the skills their jobs require. The precariat, which ranks below the proletariat in income, consists of millions of people obliged to accept a life of unstable labour and living, without an occupational identity or corporate narrative to give to their lives. Their employers come and go, or are expected to do so.

Many in the precariat are over-qualified for the jobs they must accept; they also have a high ratio of unpaid “work” in labour — looking and applying for jobs, training and retraining, queuing and form-filling, networking or just waiting around. They also rely mainly on money wages, which are often inadequate, volatile, and unpredictable. They lack access to rights-based state benefits and are losing civil, cultural, social, economic and political rights, making them supplicants if they need help to survive.

This precariat is all over the world. . . . For instance, more Americans today see themselves as in the lower classes. In 2000, according to Gallup polls, 63 percent saw themselves as middle-class and 33 percent as lower-class. In 2015, 51 percent saw themselves as middle-class and 48 percent as lower-class. Similar trends have been reported elsewhere.

Below the precariat in the social spectrum is what might be called a “lumpen-precariat,” an underclass of social victims relying on charity, often homeless and destitute, suffering from social illnesses including drug addiction and depression. . . . Their numbers are rising remorselessly; they are a badge of shame on society.

Prof. Standing’s unique contribution to the conversation about work, happiness, and meaning is his identification of the new social strata. The balance of his analysis is not unique — as he says above, it has been reported “all over the world.” In the coming weeks, we’ll look at various implications of these findings:

The old job market’s last stand — “bullshit jobs”;

Whether the middle class is truly vanishing;

Whether a rising tide truly does float all boats;

Why this might be a good time for a new vision of utopia; and

Why your next associate hire might be a robot.

And much more. Stay tuned.


Kevin Rhodes left a successful long-term law practice to scratch a creative itch and lived to tell about it… barely. Since then, he has been on a mission to bring professional excellence and personal wellbeing to the people who learn, teach, and practice the law. He has also blogged extensively and written several books about his unique journey to wellness, including how he deals with primary progressive MS through an aggressive regime of exercise, diet, and mental conditioning.

Colorado Appellate Rules Amended in Rule Change 2017(10)

On Wednesday, November 1, 2017, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced Rule Change 2017(10), amending the Colorado Appellate Rules. Most of the changes are effective January 1, 2018, but the changes to Rule 30 are effective immediately.

The rule change revises Rule 10, “Record on Appeal,” in its entirety. The new 2018 Comment notes that Rule 10 contains the substance of Rule 11, which is to be deleted. Two new forms — Form 8, “Designation of Transcripts,” and Form 9, “Motion to Supplement the Record” — were adopted with the rule change. Rules 3.4 and 4.1 were amended to correct cross-references to former Rule 11 and replace them with the appropriate sections of new Rule 10.

Rules 5 and 12 had minor changes; in Rule 5, the word “record” was replaced with “transcripts,” and in Rule 12, a reference to the filing provisions of Rule 11 was deleted. Rule 30 also had a minor change; a reference to ICCES was changed to “Colorado Courts e-Filing.”

For the full redline and clean version of Rule Change 2017(10), click here. For all of the Colorado Supreme Court’s adopted and proposed rule changes, click here.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 11/1/2017

On Wednesday, November 1, 2017, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued one published opinion and two unpublished opinions.

United States v. Ballard

United States v. Foy

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, some published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.