The Washington Post
by Hunter Schwarz
Mike Rowe, the host of “Dirty Jobs,” wishes the concept of work ethic wasn’t so partisan. Good luck with that.
Rowe was responding to a fan (?) letter on Sunday about his “constant harping” and “right wing propaganda” on work ethic when he made the case that it shouldn’t be political. His “harping” includes promoting a scholarship fund for technical schools and the S.W.E.A.T. Pledge, which stands for “Skill And Work Ethic Aren’t Taboo.”
“Everyday on the news, liberal pundits and politicians portray the wealthy as greedy, while conservative pundits and politicians portray the poor as lazy,” he wrote. “Democrats have become so good at denouncing greed, Republicans now defend it. And Republicans are so good at condemning laziness, Democrats are now denying it even exists. It’s a never ending dance that gets more contorted by the day.”
But as much as Rowe wishes otherwise, work ethic is political. Democrats are more likely to think people are either rich or poor because of circumstances out of their control, while Republicans are more likely to think it’s because of how hard they work, according to a 2014 Pew poll.
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