You must read this wonderful essay in aeon magazine from economist, John Quiggin – “The Golden Age: The 15-hour working week predicted by Keynes may soon be within our grasp – but are we ready for freedom from toil”.
Quiggin takes Keynes’ theory and in this essay fixes up some of the old oversights by talking about how happiness and money could be shared more equitably to include the marginalised like, stay at home parents, women, artists, the working poor and those who cannot (for a variety of reasons) work. After you have read this essay you will understand why capitalist feminism, which dominates in the USA, can frustrate me.
But far from weakening Keynes’s case against a money-driven society, the problems of caring for children illustrate the way in which our current economic order fails to deliver a good life, even for the groups who are doing relatively well in economic terms. The workplace structures that define a successful career today require the most labour from ‘prime-age’ workers aged between 25 and 50, the stage when the demands of caring for children are greatest.
Yes, the essay does have a bit of economics in it but I think it is all quite manageable, so don’t be put off, read on .. and if you’re having trouble with understanding any of it copy and paste the relevant bit into the comments below and I will try to ‘layperson’ the economics for you.
Cross-posted at Hoyden About Town.