So long, pardners…

January 31, 2024

The owner of the staff-owned John Lewis Partnership (JLP) has just halved redundancy payments and is proposing to slash 11,000 jobs.

Now read that sentence again. See anything odd about it?

Yes, it would seem to be saying that staff at JLP, who are called ‘partners’, are in effect sacking themselves for the good of the firm.

But of course, the ‘partners’ didn’t get consulted over any of this, and are justifiably furious. They have our sympathy.

This was always a bit of a charade, wasn’t it? In reality, capitalist companies make profits by extracting hard labour from their workers. Giving the workers fancy name badges, a few shares and ‘partnership council’ representation was never going to change that.