TED Conversations

Mackenzie Andersen

manager, Andersen Studio

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Pride in one’s work matters to the individual and the society. Work brings life meaning- work is not just a means to an end.

Leslie T Chang is using an “end justifies the means argument”, which purportedly represents the voice and courage of the workers in the global factories but serves the corporate agenda well. Nothing she says is untrue as it is a general truth that people will make the best of whatever circumstances in which they find themselves. Chang’s argument at best works as a collective voice of a collective society and represents a sort of tyranny of the majority in which those that don’t fit the collective world view don’t really matter and as such they become the social outsiders who in this day and age are ripe candidates for the global terrorist movement.

I in this blog post, I pursue the denigration of the act of “making” in which I make the connection between the local ( in my case Maine, USA) and the global. This post is part of an ongoing series.


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    May 15 2013: Tying the rate of pay into the value of the product would be very problematic. For instance Hodgdon Shpyard is down the road from us. A few years ago Hodgdon Shipyard had contracts to build the largest sailing yachts in the world. This meant employment for very fine highly skilled craftsmen whom I am sure were paid quite well by the standards of the industry but if the standard were the value of the two largest sailing yachts in the world, one would say they were poorly paid, after all none of the fine craftsmen can afford such a yacht.

    More recently there has not been a market for such yachts and so Hodgdon Shipyard has been building less glamorous and more utilitarian products and so the workers on current projects would be paid at a much lower rate if the standard of pay is based on the value of the product.. If such were the standard, there would be wild and unpredictable shifts in the amount a worker is paid, creating a lot of uncertainty for the worker making it difficult for him to plan his own life.

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