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This article is taken from PN Review 217, Volume 40 Number 5, May - June 2014.

The White-Collar Slave André Naffis-Sahely
It would seem that men are in agreement only about the concept of property, and that the public official can make free use of the life, honour, liberty, of all the other goods which citizens have, provided that he respects their money and possessions.
                                                                              Giacomo Leopardi, Zibaldone (4 February 1827)

When the Great Recession burst our latest soap bubble towards the end of 2007, several recent graduates began roaming Oxford Street in London wearing sandwich boards with HIRE ME in bold letters on the front and their contact details on the back; six years later, graduates are plastering their anaemic smiles on electronic billboards for only a few hundred dollars. Apparently, this sort of ‘strategy’ works, at least that’s what the odd newspaper story tells us. Baby boomers (apologies, the ‘older jobless’) who’ve been hit just as hard and further face the threat of ruthless millennials who’ll work for a pittance needn’t worry: is here to help. The generational gap is bridged. Baby boomers who once went on protest marches and took up Mario Savio’s ‘don’t trust anybody over 30’ have now inverted their old slogan to ‘don’t trust anybody under 30’. As for millennials, they’re free of parental pressures. After all, your father’s not going to ask why you’re still unemployed when he’s out looking for a job with you.

Maintaining one’s optimism in these grey times is difficult, but just as important as ensuring your interview suit is clean and pressed. You need to update your vocabulary ...

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