The Three-Day Miller Work Week
an outside-the-box proposal by A. Richard Miller
visits since 140425; last updated 140425.

(This web page is adapted from my MMS "Extra Feature" for the second half of April 2014. I had been proposing it to others for at least a prior decade. And here's a more recent one-page hand-out on this subject.)

My own pet solution to the current Depression (or recession, as the employed would have us believe), and to money woes, rush-hour woes, downtown parking woes, limited family-time woes, housing woes and more (phew!) is (Sound the trumpets now!) - the Miller Work Week.

The Miller Work Week is founded on three concepts:
1. Adaptation: Converting "problems" into solutions requires thinking outside the box.
2. Change: Recognition that unemployment is driven, in significant part, by technological advances reducing the necessary amount of real work to be done, while population growth creates more workers at the same time that it over-demands limited resources.
3. Equity: Commitment to a fair share for all - which our current political/economic situation has failed to deliver.

So, let's meet the Miller Work Week! To share this spiral of technological wealth, do not lay off workers and create a Depression. Instead, reduce the work week. Do it creatively, like this:
1. Have most workers work a three-day week. Let the real work load determine whether it is three ten-hour days, or three six-hour days, etc.
2. Have two separate shifts share the same work space. A Monday-Wednesday shift, and a Thursday-Saturday shift.

(There, wasn't that easy? Except, of course, for being mired in last year's thinking.)

Presto! You've halved the rush-hour traffic and doubled the parking spaces downtown. You've freed humans from a labor-dominated week - and freed them to recreate four days per week while reviving the economy. You've also freed up office space and factory space, for repurposing as housing space. You've delivered the benefits to the populace.
Did I hear someone say, "Socialist!"? Well, the last time the USA benefited from such a move - the five-day, 40-hour work week - the move to better working conditions was led by one Henry Ford. Does anyone truly imagine that Henry Ford was a Socialist? But he did demonstrate that treating society fairly can pay off.

Of course, socialism is fine, too, when applied to social needs instead of helping the wealthy. Which of those was our government supposed to be about? You know: road repair, education, public transit, disease control, turning Depressions into victories. It's about that much-maligned word, "welfare". Welfare is what successful civilizations are about!

No, the Miller Work Week won't solve every problem. Population growth and economic growth already confront real limits and create our worst problems. Soon our governments will have to think outside of their boxes and face those facts, too.

So, ask your favorite thinkers and your favorite legislators to start thinking outside the box - starting with the Miller Work Week. When you hear, "We can't seriously consider that!", start asking the really hard questions, "Why not?", "When will we face and fix this downward spiral?" and, "
Why aren't these win-win solutions being explored today?"

Or, as an attention-getting follow-on question, "Who can think outside the box?"

--Dick Miller, Partner, MMS <>