The proletarianization of tech workers

If there is hope, it is in the proles.

Margaret Bourke-White’s iconic WPA photo ‘World’s Highest Standard of Living,’ picturing a line of poor Black people standing in a breadline before a billboard proclaiming ‘The World’s Highest Standard of Living: there’s no way like the American Way’ around an image of a white, propserous family enjoying a drive in a large luxury car. The image has been altered so that the lined up workers and the family in the car blink in and out of existence, replaced by the ‘code rain’ effect from the Wachowskis 'Matrix' movies.

The last time I saw the late, great Eric Flint was at the 2018 World Science Fiction Convention in San Jose, California, where we both participated (along with Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Olav Rokne and Eileen Gunn) in an excellent panel about the working class in sf.

Eric was an extraordinary writer and an even more extraordinary character. A Marxist meat-packers’ union organizer whose whole labor career was spent in the brutal trenches of Chicago Machine politics, Eric was also a towering figure in the subgenre of historical military science fiction, a field that is otherwise dominated by right-wingers, including numerous out-and-out kooks who endlessly fantasize about Bronze Age battles being re-fought with jets and mustard gas (for the record: Eric isn’t the only progressive voice in this field; others, like Harry Turtledove, bring a humanizing, leftist view to their work).
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