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Peter

Rossmoor, US, Canada | Member Since 2001

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  • Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Barbara Ehrenreich
    • Narrated By Anne Twomey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (172)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (27)

    The best-selling author of Nickel and Dimed goes back undercover to do for America's ailing middle class what she did for the working poor. Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed explored the lives of low-wage workers. Now, in Bait and Switch, she enters another hidden realm of the economy: the world of the white-collar unemployed.

    Peter says: "A terrible book - princess Barbara goes undercover"
    "A terrible book - princess Barbara goes undercover"
    Overall

    A terrible read. This book might as well have been written by someone who had lived in a cave for the last 30 years and decided to go seek an executive job and complained about how hard it was. The book does a terrible disservice to the white collar unemployed, since many of these folks do face extreme hardships, often through no fault of their own (whereas the book definitely makes it obvious to me that I would never hire the author in a million years, so she should stop whining). The author's prior book, Nickeled and Dimed, was at least a more enjoyable read, but now I'm beginning to wonder if that too wasn't completely overdramatized by this princess of an author. A few highlights of the book:

    1) The author decides to seek an executive job, but has absolutely no prior relevant experience. When seeking a sales job for example, she says she wants to be the sales manager, though she has no sales experience. Is it no surprise she doesn't get a job?
    2) The author seeks out a strange group of coaches (which I have to wonder if she has misrepresented these poor folks as well, given the rest of the book). The coaches ask her to take several personality tests. She fabricates random answers to these tests. The tests, given the random answers, point her in many different directions. Author's conclusion: the tests are worthless (they may be, but making up random answers wouldn't be my way of proving it)

    3) The author obtains further advice. She is 'surprised' that corporate hiring managers would like to hire people that are likable and that can dress appropriately for an interview. Granted, this may be strange and foreign to those that have never held a job before, but for a mid-age worker seeking an executive position, you would think that this wouldn't be a surprise.

    4) The author find some independent rep sales positons. She is 'surprised' that she is not given an office'

    5) The author calls for the unemployed white collar to unite.

    18 of 20 people found this review helpful

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