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Glenn Beck & Company Have a Good Laugh Over Investigative Report on -- Gasp! -- Non-Ergonomic Warehouses


"You know, you are going to change your mind about America and capitalism when you hear this exposé..."

In a lengthy exposé titled “I Was a Warehouse Wage Slave,” Mac McClelland, a so-called “human rights reporter” with Mother Jones, reveals that she went undercover to investigate one of the many warehouses used by the rapidly growing and profitable e-commerce industry.

You know what she discovered?

Much to the amusement of Glenn Beck and and his co-hosts, Pat Gray and Stu Burguiere, McClelland discovered that it’s, like, really hard to work at some of these shipping centers. The hours are long, the work is difficult, the breaks are short, and it’s an overall unpleasant experience.

"[It was] immense ... cold, cavernous. Silent, despite thousands of people quietly doing their jobs, or standing along the conveyors quietly packing or box-taping, nothing noisy but the occasional whir of a passing forklift,” McClelland writes.

“[W]e pickers speed walk an average of 12 miles a day on cold concrete and the twinge in my legs blurs into the heavy soreness in my feet that complements the pinch in my hips when I crouch to the floor -- the pickers' shelving runs from the floor to seven feet high," she adds.

In the words of Col. Walter E. Kurtz: “The horror.”

Watch McClelland discuss her experience [via Yahoo!]:

Other terrors described in the McClelland report include: being tired after work, being scared of being fired, being scared of being late to work, having a lot of work to do, having to meet and surpass quotas, having to speed walk, dealing with static electricity, and so on.

Yeah … Sounds horrible.

Now, to be fair, some of the things included in the McClelland report do sound pretty lousy. The fact that one employee (Brian) was fired for taking a day off for the birth of his child is ridiculous. The hours sound unpleasant, the idea of being “counseled” for not meeting quotas sounds just as bad, and having only a handful of toilets to split between 3,000 employees is just plain gross.

But even with these downsides, doesn’t writing about a Mississippi warehouse in tones usually reserved for Soviet-style gulags seem, oh, just a bit much? Glenn Beck, Pat Gray, and Stu Burguiere, seem to think so.

“This is actual audio. We are verifying this is not Communist China,” Beck said.

“If you’re driving, please pull over. If you have children, excuse them from the room,” he added. “You know, you are going to change your mind about America and capitalism when you hear this exposé from Mother Jones.”

While responding this way may seem a little flippant, there's a legitimate point to be made: it's not as though this is the only tough job out there. Some people, the author of this article included, have spent more time than they would care to remember washing dishes, mopping floors, scrubbing industrial kitchen ovens, and picking gristle out of a dishwasher's food catch, often without air conditioning.

So while the working conditions in McClellan's warehouse may or may not be unpleasant, it still seems a bit presumptuous for her to expect outrage over the fact that somewhere in America, someone has a tough job.

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