The unionized labor market is on fire and that continued rage of discontent will carry over into the next year as the Writers and Local One, the Broadway Stagehands Union, in New York are joined by the Director’s Guild and the Actors in violent and visual protest against untenable labor equity.
Are these work actions merely about money and respect or is something deeper going on here? Is there a revolt against condemning the Common Man while the rich become wealthier and crueler?
The Writers Guild want a cut of future download, internet and streaming profits. DVDs are already dead-and-gone as internet rentals outweigh conventional hardcopy distribution.
Stagehands want to keep their workers installed in the theaters and producers want to cut manpower while risking the threat of greater injury on set.
Actors will by threatened by producers that wish to replace them with Avatars and reincarnated stars from history. John Wayne, Groucho Marx and Clark Gable will outsell any combination of current superstar mix.
Directors are most at risk because any nine-year-old with iMove ’08 and a Mac can direct and cut up “film” as good as any highly paid blockbuster creator.
The issues at stake in these labor strikes are of the Human kind and all are filled with passion and magnitude in search of meaning and fulfillment.
Do we, as a society, value the real over the faked?
Do we require blood pulsing in our people in order to be entertained?
Will we allow ourselves to be entertained by resurrected ghosts from antiquity who will inanimately “huck-n-shuck” again for us because we cannot find release from our emotional childhood totems?
I argue we are required to support the living over the dead.
We must pay each other a living wage.
We must demand of ourselves, and of each other, that we press forward from the now and into the future together — and never apart — or we risk the eternal virtualization of our dreams and hopes and wishes forever replaying in our mind in one endless loop of the familiar and the ordinary while sentencing us to uninspired nightmares without catharsis.