Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream by Barbara Ehrenreich

By Barbara Ehrenreich

The bestselling writer of Nickel and Dimed is going again undercover to do for America’s in poor health heart classification what she did for the operating poor

Barbara Ehrenreich’s Nickel and Dimed explored the lives of low-wage staff. Now, in Bait and turn, she enters one other hidden realm of the economic climate: the shadowy international of the white-collar unemployed. Armed with a believable résumé of a pro “in transition,” she makes an attempt to land a middle-class job—undergoing profession training and character trying out, then trawling a sequence of EST-like boot camps, task gala's, networking occasions, and evangelical job-search ministries. She will get a picture makeover, works to undertaking a profitable angle, but is proselytized, scammed, lectured, and—again and again—rejected.

Bait and turn highlights the folk who’ve performed every thing right—gotten university levels, built marketable abilities, and outfitted up amazing résumés—yet became again and again susceptible to financial ruin, and never easily as a result of the vagaries of the company cycle. Today’s ultra-lean companies take pleasure in laying off their “surplus” employees—plunging them, for months or years at a stretch, into the twilight quarter of white-collar unemployment, the place activity looking turns into a full-time task in itself. As Ehrenreich discovers, there are few social helps for those newly disposable workers—and little protection even in the event you have jobs.

Like the now vintage Nickel and Dimed, Bait and turn is alternately hilarious and tragic, a searing exposé of financial cruelty the place we least count on it.

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Extra resources for Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream

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The European Union, and especially the single-currency block within it, also happens to be an area of remarkably low fertility by historic standards. If I had to put money on any one projection, I would put it on the 2003/2004 central projection of the UN. This is because I think we are currently experiencing a small global baby boom, an echo of earlier larger booms, but projecting forward as if that boom is not going to end soon, as the 2011 report does, is foolhardy. 3 billion a century later, in 2175.

John Wilmoth is no idiot. A professor in the Department of Demography at Berkeley, University of California, he was seconded to the Population Division of the United Nations from 2005 until 2007. Wilmoth’s main interests are in longevity, and how long all of us may one day get to live. At the foot of his web page is a tribute to Christian Mortensen, 1882–1998, the Danish American who appeared to enjoy smoking (Danish) cigars almost up to the point of his death, at age 115. 43 34 Mortenson may have lived a long time, but Danes in western Europe generally die a little earlier than their neighbours, it is thought most probably due to their smoking a little more.

After today, we are already in ‘debt’ towards nature and planet Earth and this is where the other name of the day (Ecological Debt Day) comes from. 27 Debt is scary; debts have to be repaid if you are not to become a pariah. Stories about Earth Overshoot/ Ecological Debt Day are the stick; stories about the potential reliability of wind power are the carrot, but between these buffetings of doom and optimism it is easy to lose hope and interest, or to think that this is all too much to comprehend.

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