Tuesday, 15 October 2013
Customers are saints, while employers are all devils.
Bryan Caplan asks a good question: why is that if an employer pinches a female employee’s bottom, the law comes down on the employer like a ton of bricks, whereas if a CUSTOMER pinches the employees bottom, that’s kind of more or less OK?
My explanation is that the populist view is that customers are ordinary deserving saintly “people”, whereas employers are exploitative, evil capitalists.
Indeed, the above sort of nonsense leads to an even bigger farce: those frequenent instances of where a public sector employer is “fined” for misconduct or incompetence or something of the sort.
An employer, particularly a public sector employer, is an entirely ABSTRACT CONCEPT. In contrast, where such incompetence arises, there must be ACTUAL PEOPLE in the relevant organisation who are responsible for the misconduct or incompetence. But “ACTUAL PEOPLE” according to the above popular mythology are all saints, by definiton. While employers (even if they are public secotor employers) are all evil and exploitative. So the blame just has to be pinning on the entirely artificial and abstract concept: the public sector employer.
Needless to say, the fine imposed on the public sector employer gives little inducement to the offending employees to mend their ways.
(h/t to Stumbling and Mumbling)