Friday, July 29, 2011

More labour songs

I've completed a revision to HRMT 323: Injury Compensation and Disability Management and written IDRL 408: Workplace Injury, a new readings course. As always, I end up with more material that I can put in the course, include a small selection of music videos. These often make points more effectively than research articles.

First up is Pink's Mr. President. This song was dropped from a unit about precarious employment and minimum standards. How many songs talk about minimum wage? This one seems to capture something important about the disconnect between Alberta politicians and workers around the introduction of a two-tier minimum wage as well as the stalling around indexing it.

Delving into the country genre, Alabama's Roll On tells of the effect that a workplace injury (or the threat of one, although perhaps I just spoiled the song for you) on workers' families. Herein we see why workplace injury has such high political salience and thus why the state is compelled to create the appearance it is alive to the issue, even if OHS is all show and no go.

And finally the Script's For the First Time. Buried in here is some interesting commentary on the ripple-on effect unemployment on workers' lives. This speaks to the asymmetry of power flowing from the whip of hunger and how this affects workers' ability to resist injurious work.

I hope you enjoy these while I enjoy a short vacation.

-- Bob Barnetson

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