Sorry, @Alex. The only humor I see in this picture is the folly of our current situation. This picture reminds me that there was a time when innovation and hard work was king. The wood-fired boiler turned the flywheel that distributed energy to each of the machines. Humans were smart enough not to stick their arms between the belts and the pulleys, so there were no gates surrounding them. There are 12-year-old apprentices working to learn a trade and on their way to become master craftsmen. Each employee was dressed in their work clothes and ready to put in an honest 12-hour day.
No Blackberrys, no carpal-tunnel syndrome, no fluorescent lighting, no smoking breaks, no HR training seminars, no PowerPoint, no Farmville, no ergonomic office chairs...
How about the caption, "Smile. Remember that Work used to mean Work."
Wow, William, I expect the occasional "in my day.." comment on this blog, but seriously, nostalgia for the 19th century? Dangerous working conditions and child labor contribute to a satisfying albeit considerably shorter lifespan? :)
Perhaps your caption should have been "The workers at the Acme Buggy Whip factory were stunned to learn that their jobs had been off-shored to Foxconn..."
Zippy, speakig of Foxconn, this is probably what it is like there.
You are right, though, there were lots of industrial accidents. A friend of mine lost his father when one of the shafts broke in a setup like this. There wasn't a lot of stress analysis or testing that went into design back then.
On the other hand William's next to last paragraph has some merit.
GlennA, I think you are correct. Actually, around the turn of the 20th century, it was Ernst Mach, I think, who was encouraging students not to go into physics. His reasoning was that everything usefull had been discovered. There were just a few details to be worked out. Then Einstein published his paper on black body radiation.
William L Weaver; So, the 'folly' of our current situation is that 12-year-olds are in school instead of on-the-job ? No OSHA doesn't sound like paradise to me = or do you agree with the mine owners that the 29 miners were 'expendable' or ' disposable' ? How about the caption: Remember, Work used to mean Dis-memberment and Death.
We removed the belt guards because every time some leaned against them the belt would come of the pulley. This way if some one leans on the belt they get burned and cut and quickly move away without slowing down production.
I have bad news... due to the downturn in the economy and the poor business market, we're afraid that no only will there be no increase in benefits and pay this year, but all the production operators will be forced to accept a 5% reduction in pay.
On a positive note, our customers' love us, our company had a record breaking year in sales and profit, and all the managers are receiving bonuses three times their salaries... oops.
The good news is that the government is here to watch over you by ensuring your safety with OSHA, your environment with the EPA, your unions and child labor laws with the Burea of Labor, while maintaining an arbitrary minimum wage not tied any economic index.
The bad news is that the government has taxed your owners and stockholders so much that, despite receiving a few hundred million is stimulus funds, they've put that money into closing your plant and moving the manufacturing overseas to a country that doesn't care about work safety, the environment, unions or child labor, and the workers' yearly pay is less than your weekly paycheck.
Who took the last energy drink?
Unfortunately, after being in business several decades, our board of directors has decided that our future will not be in the creation of wealth through mining, growing, or manufacturing wealth, but by providing simple unskilled, low quality services to everyone else for far more money than it's worth because no one overseas would ever attempt to undersell our services with complex, highly-skilled, high quality services for a fraction of the cost.
And that includes our diversity training... any questions?
Have you ever thought about replacing those skylights with green, energy efficient CFLs?
On the advise of our overpaid consultants we're discontinuing the apprenticeship and internship programs because the consultants think that anyone off the street can do your job with a little training. Also, for your information, the training budget for next year has been eliminated, we don't have the money to hire anyone else, and no one will get a pay raise this year because we needed the money to pay the consultants.
Where do you want me to place the smiley faces? Does anyone know the chicken dance? Who wants to join the fun team?
Congratulations on joining this new government research lab, just look around... our new senator managed to earmark hundreds of millions of dollars for this project, most of that for equipment and personnel; however, to save money, we didn't buy the new equipment, but had someone in asset control unfamiliar with the project pick out some equipment from surplus... to keep us under budget, none of you actually working on the project can expect pay raises until the sixth year, which is also the year our new senator is up for re-election. To celebrate, the several hundred administrators and office support staff are having a gala at the stadium and five-star hotel across the street, where we booked the banquet halls and half the hotel for a party... We're bringing in bands and singers, and all the food will be catered by world-renowned gourmet chefs... At the after party we'll be handing out assignments and bonuses to the administrators and support staff. It starts at 7:00PM sharp... oh, and don't forget your tuxes, as this is a black-tie affair. We'd like to thank our friends over at the GSA for helping us with contacts to coordinate this in such a short time. Any questions?
In an effort to improve efficiency, after the meeting to set the agendas for this round of meetings, the meeting for the fun team bake sale, the volunteer team meeting, and the green team, we'll have our kick-off meeting for the efficiency team to set up a plan to discover the root cause for our drop in production...
Don't worry about an increase to your healthcare premiums, we got a waiver!
Well, the new Department of Manufacturing guys just left. What do you think of the government's new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility? They staffed it with unemployed laborers who still get unemployment.
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