The past decade was not only about advances in digitization, increased processing power, the popularization of cloud computing, and the “sharing economy;” it was also about the crash of the financial system in 2008, vast attacks on employment and worker rights, sprawling debt, economic inequality, dwindling numbers among the ranks of traditional labor unions as well as booming automation of everything from lawyers and professors, to cooks and farmers. The incursion against waged employment in favor of contingent work undermines worker rights in ways that are even more harmful than the actions by Thatcher and Reagan against miners and air traffic controllers in the 1980s. The shift away from employment to freelancing, independent contract work, and other emerging forms of labor is an affront to one hundred years of labor struggles for the 8-hour workday, employer-covered health insurance, minimum wage, workplace harassment, and many other protections that were established under the New Deal to foster social harmony and keep class warfare at bay.


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