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Difference Between Blue Collar and White Collar

Blue Collar vs White Collar

Up to this day, there is confusion in discerning blue from white collar jobs. There has been some stigma attached to some, most especially to blue collar jobs. Nevertheless, both job types have their own set of pros and cons.

Traditionally, white collar jobs were named as such because these jobs originally required the worker to wear a shirt that is colored white either with a tie or without one. These jobs are often those that require the employee to wear a tie and work within the safe confines of the four walls of their offices, stores, schools and the like. Nevertheless, it can be safely said that the era of wearing the traditional white shirt and tie has already faded away. Still, many professionals like doctors and lawyers still don their ties and perhaps couple it with a white coat (especially for the medical doctors) to give an impression of a more serious stance.

On the contrary, blue collar jobs are not necessarily jobs that require the worker to wear blue shirts or polo. It is rather an expression which emphasizes that these employees work in a non-management position like those jobs that may involve workers becoming dirtier because of physically working a little harder. Often, these are the jobs that require protection clothing. So, perhaps the confusion sets in when one would label being a doctor as a blue collar job because most of them wear a doctor’s coat or mask for protection. Medical doctors are white collar workers! Blue collar workers are the auto mechanics, drivers, and factory employees.

Unfortunately, there is an undeniable presence of a stigma for blue collar jobs. People often become too judgmental and say that these jobs are just plain ‘dirty,’ literally. Even if most of these jobs are more laborious, not to mention dangerous for the employee because of the workplace they report to, this does not always hold true to all cases.

Conversely, white collar jobs have a better working environment that are usually cleaner and cooler. These are the corporate jobs that often have a good basic monthly pay. As a result, many professionals who hold a degree end up with a white collar job while those who didn’t finish college will eventually end up in ‘just’ a blue collar job. Yet again, this is not applicable to all situations. Also, middle class workers have been linked to blue collar while the upper class workers have been connected to white collar. Fortunately for blue collar jobs, the truth about receiving a higher pay for their white collar counterpart is not always true. In several instances, they even end up receiving a higher pay than the white collar workers.

1. White collar jobs are made synonymous to professionals who obtained higher degrees and education.

2. White collar jobs are linked to the generally higher paying type of jobs.

3. White collar jobs often have a cleaner of ‘better’ workplaces.

4. White collar jobs are more corporate and managerial while blue collar jobs are often non management but actual physical labor type of jobs.


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91 Comments

  1. I think emotionally charged topics like this all come down to the real underlying issue: is it best to tell a painful truth or make a lot of “feel good” comments that are less honest but don’t hurt anyone’s feelings?

    In the pit of everyone’s stomach we all know white collar is superior to blue. On the whole, it pays substantially more than blue, and although both can involve psychological stress, many blue collar jobs also wear out the body, which years down the road seriously affect your quality of life and health.

    Like it or not, the status and sense of accomplishment one gets from being a doctor or business executive vs say, a plumber or roofer, is very different. Is status everything in the world? Absolutely not, but status is certainly not bad. Also, white collar people tend to be continually evolving by doing things like taking trips to europe to experience culture, whereas blue collar tend to do things that provide immediate gratification but little in development, such as annual trips to florida to party.

    So, all in all, the life path of studying -> college -> career -> higher payscale and better quality of life in general, is the superior route.

    But to say things flat out, there are many people that are not bright enough or patient enough for college. Do you tell these people that they will never measure up to white collar people? Of course not. So thus the reason Americans have learned to sugar coat anything we tell the underdog so we don’t hurt the feelings of good, hard working people.

    • John’s ludicrous comment shows how deeply unhappy he is with his own life.

    • It’s amazing how John looks down on the policemen who protect him. The firemen and emergency medical personnel who rescue him and the construction workers, carpenters, contractors etc. who build. He looks down on plumbers and mechanics and other repairmen who fix his problems. He looks down on the fishermen and farmers who feed him. It’s absurd. The people who do these great jobs make society possible and for whatever reason John wants to look down on them. These people do real work and they make things happen and they get my praise and appreciation.

      • Charlie says I don’t appreciate what blue collar people do.

        Yes, all people of all walks of life contribute to society. But that’s not what we’re taking about.
        We’re talking about the painful truth of which walk of life is superior.

        There’s an expression “everything a man can do he must.” It means you owe it to yourself to be everything you can be.

        Blue collar people leave far far more of their potential on table. White collar develop themselves, studying for years; not just to learn but to LEARN TO THINK BETTER.

        When you think ‘better’ you move above a life revolving around just “trying to survive” and into a life of living WELL.

        Blue collar people love to brag how hard they work -it somehow proves they are a ‘real man’ (for whatever ridiculous accomplishment that is). But simple education teaches you that bragging about working harder instead of working SMARTER doesn’t make you a “real man” but a real idiot. It’s like bragging that you worked all day digging a hole with spoon when you could have just used a shovel.

        Sorry to be so blunt, but there’s no getting around it. After years of a disciplined education teaching you to think smarter, you know the value of eating better, avoiding products that have links to cancer or heart disease, learning refined life and culture.. Yes, blue collar can be healthy too, but their lack of education limits greatly how deep an understanding they’ll have of any subject. What’s worse, they view high level learning as “nerdy”,”lame”, etc..,

        So this disgust for knowledge, education, those gay dress shirts and ties, leaves blue collar people making half as much money, bodies that are battered from decades of abusing their body like a work mule. Breaking your body for half the wages isnt “proving you’re tough” it’s proving you’re idiotic.

        So yes, these are the painful but obvious reasons white collar is vastly superior to blue.

        Then they teach their kids about how important it is be “tough” and instilling the same stupid values on their kids, creating a new generation of limited people with completely backward values.

        • I totally agree. Blue collar workers are indeed less intelligent than white collar workers. Professional workers are more intelligent, cultured, and refined. They also are more socioeconomically affluent. They also have higher aspirations in life. They love museums, reading, and the theatre. Blue collar workers are just Neanderthals. Obviously, they are less educated therefore they are less intelligent. They do not read, all they do is mindlessly watch television and read simplistic newspapers such as THE DAILY NEWS. They have a rudimentary vocabulary while the white collar professional have a more advanced vocabulary.

          Yes, blue collor workers are indeed limited people. I consider them to be inane, mindless drones. Of course, white collared employees are far better than the blue collar workers. They are more respected and reverred by society. They are also treated better and with more deference. White collar employees value education, especially higher education, more than blue collar employees who often deride higher education. Blue collar employees are just inferior all around. Besides, most blue collar employees do not have the high intellectual capacity and that is the reason why they are in those jobs!

          • In the HVAC program at Mass Bay Community College students must take Calculus and Physics. You can’t be unintelligent and use sophisticated tools that are used to properly diagnose a problem. As technology advances so do many blue collar jobs. To say that most blue collar jobs require little to know intellect is borderline ignorant at best. We must read schematics, blue prints and learn hundreds of state regulated codes. A good highly skilled technician is almost always very intelligent. There are a lot of people that like to romanticize the white collar life. I have had the unfortunate pleasure of working with white collared people that have absolutely horrible communication skills and can’t work with others. Some of the most filthy mouths I have heard come from what some here describe as refined people. Not all white collared people take trips to different parts of the world, read intellectually stimulating books or even keep up with politics. Most white collar people are too busy raising their children, cooking, cleaning, shopping for groceries, helping their kids with homework, and enjoy doing simple things don’t require much thinking but is just as exhilarating if not more so than something considered intellectual.

            Most white collar jobs are no where near as complicated as rocket science like some people what to make it seem. And not all of them are respectful, law abiding, sharply dressed and sophisticated.

          • This is the most idiotic thing I have ever heard. Everything is not this black and white. People choose to do things for many different reasons. I have a college degree in fine arts and love to make things with my hands (say sculpture, paintings, etc) and as it is very hard to get a job and make a good living as an artist (ie the starving artist) I had to find something that fit my personality and my abilities. I have for the last 25 years owned a business making custom canvas and upholstery for yachts that uses my skills as a craftsman and a designer (3-d concepts of sculpture as well as geometry and aesthetics). I am very annoyed at people who automatically degrade me by using the term blue collar. I could have done something more traditional with my degree and sat in a stuffy office of florescent lightbulbs with my white shirt on but I would have been bored out of my skull. I use my brain everyday to design the items that I make that are like no other, it is custom. My next venture is to use my artistc talents to help individuals who suffer with alzheimers and autism. This is going to be very rewarding. Do not put people in a box. The world would be a pretty awful place if everyone was either a doctor or a lawyer and I know a lot of them who have made a bunch of money and own big expensive yachts and they are idiots.

      • Quick Question?

        Did you even read what John wrote? I’m pretty sure he didn’t say he looked down on any of those professions, you made that part up all on your own. John was just explaining the difference between Blue and White collared workers and that we all know the real truth about their places in the world. However, we sugar coat everything and talk up the uneducated little guy/gal.

        Besides, based purely on his post and not what you’ve made up, was he wrong? What career sounds better to you? Being a ditch digger or an executive in a multi-million dollar company.

        Being a toilet cleaner or the VP of Marketing? Hmm its a tough decision right?

        Also, I don’t know why you brought up police and fire, those aren’t jobs, they are ways of life that require something most blue collar jobs don’t and that is Courage… (Plus you left out our Military)

        Well, maybe the toilet cleaning people have a healthy dose of courage…

        • Your comments are fairly ridiculous, why must their be a debate to who has a better life. The average family income is 50,000$ a year. Not everyone who works in an office building or go to college make the big bucks. To be honest there are not many management jobs that are just given out. For every management job there are probably 10-30 people under it waiting to get promoted. Without economic growth there will be hardly any promotions for the white collar crew. I think many people go into the world with high hopes and are let down by their pay and benefits. I know many blue collar workers that make more than people in suits.

          I wonder how much all of you really make and some blue collar jobs require schooling. My husband is an HVAC tech working on large buildings/power plants/etc. and went to school for 5 years attaining all different types of certificates etc. Many of you have no idea how electricity works or how to fix anything. He loves his jobs and is put in charge of many of the larger construction projects. He is in the pipefitters union and makes over a 100,000$ a year, which makes us in the top 5% of wage earners. On top of this he has full benefits, annuity, pension, healthcare, company truck, gas card, cell phone. If anyone in this blog can top that as far as pay etc. let me know it is highly unlikely and he loves his blue collar job. Many people in his union went to college and did not like the business world, it is boring.

        • Well, philosophically speaking Jesus Christ was a carpenter. He came to serve not to be served. I don’t think he was intellectually inferior to his white collar counterparts.

          Live and let live.

    • Not all white collar workers are doctors or business executives. Most are just ordinary office employees. Many have degrees but not all are professionals (doctors, lawyers, engineers, accountants, etc.). You can certainly do better in some blue collar jobs than many white collar jobs. Also, it is much easier to start your own business when you’re doing some blue collar thing like plumbing than it is when you’re doing something like aerospace engineering and a plumber working for himself can do very well. If you wanted to make a very general statement to a group of kids or something then you could say that in terms of money and job satisfaction white collar is better than blue but that’s a very general statement and the truth is there is a ton of overlap. The best option for a particular person is going to depend on their own aptitude. Also, many of the best paid white collar jobs are closed professions like medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy. Of course the best paying blue collar jobs often involve unions which are also cartels but I guess what I’m saying is these jobs aren’t necessarily open to everyone who wants them.

  2. John could not be more wrong. I don’t where he got bullshit like this from.

    “Also, white collar people tend to be continually evolving by doing things like taking trips to europe to experience culture, whereas blue collar tend to do things that provide immediate gratification but little in development, such as annual trips to florida to party.”

    Maybe his head is too far up his ass.

  3. Proud Blue Collar worker weighing in here.

    First off, in response to the comment of white collar workers experiencing culture whereas blue collar workers do things that provide immediate gratification…Total load.

    I’ve worked in mills, in the construction industry, and in warehousing, and those men and women I worked with wanted nothing more than to visit places like the UK and the Pacific Islands and the Medaterrian, but unfortunately, our hours and wages wouldn’t and allow it…Not to mention that they weren’t the most secure jobs in the world, so there were a lot of lay-offs and random days off because of the lack of orders or weather, or whatever else came up. Only 2 out of the hundreds of people I worked with were uncultured and ignorant partyers, and those were the ones who just weren’t raised to be above the influence…Know what I mean?

    Now, here’s the other side of the coin. I may be proud as the day is long to be a blue-collar worker. I love running machines, playing with tools, working with my hands and being able to look at a structure or a piece of furniture and say “Hey, I had a major hand in building that.” It’s an awesome feeling.
    A not-so-great feeling though is breathing in powdered formaldehyde, being burned, cut, crushed under the weight of things you have no choice but to handle alone because you’re working with a skeleton crew…As such, I would have no problem becoming a white collar worker if the opportunity ever arose. It’s all about what’s best for you.

  4. Why all the hostility?

    So everyone gets on here and beats up John? Why? Does John speak of a truth that actually exists, but we aren’t willing to accept?

    Personally, I think John is right on the money with all of his comments. Granted they are blanket statements that shouldn’t necessarily cover all aspects of both Blue and White collared workers, but he’s pretty close.

    However, this is the main point John was driving at: “So, all in all, the life path of studying -> college -> career -> higher payscale and better quality of life in general, is the superior route.”

    Following those steps (not always) tends to produce what is considered a “White Collar” person/worker. Not following those steps (not always) tends to produce what is considered a “Blue Collar” worker/person.

    However, some of the other things John says sound a little condescending.

    You can disagree with me if you want, its only my opinion.

  5. I myself am a blue collar worker and I have been allover the world from Europe to half a dozen tropical islands . And honestly the only white collar workers I know that make more than I do are doctors . I know LOTS of white collar office workers that don’t make much money at all . So all the things said on here do not hold true for all blue collar workers. So as a blue collar worker you can’t make me feel bad . I actually feel bad for the white collar workers that pay tons of money for collage then come out and make less than half I do . I’m sure while they were in collage I was making money and seeing the world . Now I have no debt only my home mortgage and all the white collar workers I know are living in an apt and paying off there student loans with there small salaries .

    • “Electric Makes the World Turn,” you write about your income. But the situation you described represents the higher-end of blue collar earnings.

      To be fair, if you’re going to bring up higher-end earnings of blue collar, you have to compare it to higher-end earnings of white collar. People at the high-end of the white collar professions such as Investment Bankers and CEOs, make your entire annual salary in one day..

      Conversely, you mentioned white collar people on the lower-end who you say “only live in apartments.” But I’m sure when you are fair and compare them to lower-end blue collar people who live in trailer parks, the apartment starts looking pretty good.

      Comparing earnings potential between white and blue collar professions was not the best can of worms to open.

      In summary, on the high-end, blue collar workers own a house, while white collar can own a mansion and a private jet.

      **I didn’t want to simply write about financial differences between the two. I wanted to discuss other deeper issues like levels of thinking and functioning, quality of living, etc.., but you brought the discussion here so I responded in kind.

      P.S. I know you have supercilious feelings towards the educated but we study in ‘college,’ not a “collage”

      • Im a union plumber in ga and after a 5 year apprenticeship program we make $65,000 annually, foreman 75,000. with overtime easily 80,000. these numbers are not made up there on ua 72 website. we also are required continuing ed every year. and a small union contractor can easily bring in million plus per year. also there is alot of critical thinking required.

      • my point is most people who go to collage for 6 years dont make that kind of money. doctors make more but are up tp their eyeballs in dept. im alot more satisfied with my job than most of the people i see in the office building i live in,

  6. oh john, we all know you don’t have a private jet, lolz. i am neither blue collar or white collar. i am friggin GOLD collar. while you retards argue about what is better, blue or white, us gold collar folk are rakin’ in massive profit and not doing SH1T. i’m out phishing on my yacht while you both slave away for the “man”.. trying to earn money that is printed out of thin air by the federal reserve. so both of your professions are equally pointless. it’s all who owns the most gold, you idiot

    • “Gold collar”?

      Now we’re getting ridiculous here.

      You cite your autonomy from the ‘rat race’ as proof that you’re a different collar. Any collar however, can be more or less self-employed, so I’m not sure how your criterion is above or distinct from either collar.

      Also, be humble. Whether your story is truthful (I’m not sure a filthy rich person could care enough from his yacht to write on a little ol’ forum like this) or specious, there’s always someone richer.

      Last I checked, the top X richest persons in the world are Corporate owners or investors and thus WHITE collared.

      I’m sure even a yacht would get lost in their dog’s house..

      • I think you are absolutely retarded… I am a Master Electrician and Senior HVAC Field Supervisor. I can garauntee you do no make more money than me. In fact, I don’t even think you have any idea how much education and on the job training it requires to do HVAC or be an electrician… Tell me what the exact super heat is needed on a 85 ton 677,000 BTU chilled water system on a 65% heat load at the chiller barrell?…

  7. It’s funny to put things in such a black and white perspective.

    My personal experience is from someone with a technical degree, from a major state university (also have a minor in business). I grew up overseas and was raised by a West Point graduate and college educated family. I make better money than most of my peers wearing ties and suits to work.

    Everyday you can catch me with a T-Shirt and my hands filthy from work. I wear work boots, drive a truck and generally smell like sweat by the end of the day. I also manage the finances, contracts, materials and correspondence among multiple parties to ensure client satisfaction.

    I hold conversations with the lowest of the low and the highest of the high in today’s echelon society.

    There is no difference between my value and the value of any other man. There is only a difference in our roles to play.

    What am I? Am I white collar or blue collar?

    Does my government care when they redistribute my wealth to those who don’t work?

    • I’m not sure why you’re so proud to live a work life in a t-shirt and work boots?

      Do you feel it proves that you are a ‘real man’? And the people that are around you talk about getting drunk, who ‘kicked who’s ass,’ and getting laid.

      At the risk of being blunt: blue collar people don’t really GROW UP.

      If your interests (such as getting wasted, talking all day about getting laid or who’s ass you can kick) are STILL pretty much what any common teenage kid would talk about, your life went terribly wrong.

      A man should have thinking that’s sharply different from his kid. The thinking man owes it to himself to become cultured and polished. Why? Because these are some of the fastest ways to grow out of limited ‘one-dimensional thinking’ and into limitless ‘critical thinking’ -thinking that elevates you to superior quality living.

      P.S. I would say the first thing to go would be the blue collar’s common objectifying of good: (tough, cool, straight to the point, everything new and innovative is always just ‘bells and whistles’) vs bad: (details, “knowledge is nerdy and lame,” polished means weak and gay)

      • money does not define a person it take everyone as a hole to make this world work people should not look down on others just because of there job title. thats just nuts. Now, I am a blue collar worker always have been .I started at the bottom of a blue collar job 20 years ago while my friends were going to school . but you know what those friends who can not find jobs now call me for a job its kinda funny really no matter what your job is if you are good at it you will make money but most important your happy remember it takes everyone every job is important
        Lastly its not about money or it should not be
        I see when i go somewhere and im dirty i get looks (if they do not know me) but ive been working all day to fix that white collar persons thing
        O and buy the way I am a bussiness owner in construction and have millions . so if you define a person by there job as not smart they need to better themself they could do better . and in real life vim doing better then you What does that say about you Maby you did something wrong
        IT TAKES EVERY KIND OF JOB OUT THERE TO MAKE THIS WORLD WORK

  8. I completely agree with ONE thing John has said, that white-collar people typically make more than blue-collar, but thats where I stop agreeing with him. To say being a white collar worker is better for everybody is a completely idiotic statement. While doing hard manual labour all day may not pay much in money it gives you a huge amount of satisfaction, nothing beats the feeling of going home completely drained and stinking of sweat knowing that you gave it all you had and tomorrow you will too.

    If I was handing out awards for the dumbest things I have ever heard this would for sure be a top contender,

    “But to say things flat out, there are many people that are not bright enough or patient enough for college. Do you tell these people that they will never measure up to white collar people? Of course not. So thus the reason Americans have learned to sugar coat anything we tell the underdog so we don’t hurt the feelings of good, hard working people.”

    John, are you serious?? You actually believe that all blue collar people will never “measure up to whitle collar people”? Maybe I will never make as much money as a white collar worker and maybe I will never hang a peice of paper on my wall saying I know stuff, but everytime I come home I will look around at what I have and be thankful for the chance to work hard day in and day out making a living doing the hard work that people like you just arent cabable of, and maybe I will only ever work “strong back weak mind” type of jobs but I will love every second of satisfaction that those jobs give me and I will continue to take pride in my work and give it my all daily. But enough arguing, I have to get back to planning my annual trip to Florida…

    • Brad, your line of reasoning and values are EXACTLY what’s wrong with a bulk of blue-collar America.

      In one breath you say you work back-breaking labor, and in the next speak about being underpaid.

      Why in the world should you be ‘proud’ to over-exert yourself – permanently breaking your body down in the long run, for less pay than you deserve? Killing yourself by digging with a spoon when you could just as well use a bulldozer isn’t admirable but senseless and sorry to say, very stupid.

      A man owes it to himself and his family to provide ABUNDANT living and to leave behind his legacy. Understand: the less you earn the more you HURT yourself and your family.

      The less money you make, the more you force your family into hurting themselves by eating cheap high fat, high (cancer causing) chemically drenched preservative food.

      You and your family should be surrounded by great things, instead just the minimum.

      Your family deserves to live in big, clean, spacious living. Clothing should not look like a common life of hardship -generic and sloppy, but fitted with high-quality, that looks as sharp years out as it was when bought.

      Your family should be exposed to well-educated cultures to expand their perceptions instead of being around common, cynical foul-mouthed defeated people, who bring out the worst.

      And by the end of your life, your kids should be proud to see the huge ADVANCEMENTS the family has made. From a small humble living, to moderate, to spacious. From the old clunker car that always had problems to a quality used car, to a new precision engineered car.

      UNDERSTAND: This HAS NOTHING to do with ego driven ‘bragging rights’ but living a healthy, polished, informed and enhanced life.

      An animal is meant to live a life of survival. A human is do a lot more with himself than just survive (‘get by’). How is the blue-collar mantra of working hard with little to show any different from the animal’s?

      You’ve been brainwashed into accepting FAR less than you deserve.

      • To John: I totally concur with you. John, there is no use to talking to Brad. He is a stereotypical, atavistic blue collar Neanderthal. We are both college educated professionals. It is best not to think sense to a person who has not evolved.

        See John, the blue collar person is an entirely different species from us intellectual white collar people. Brad is just a primitive person. While we are living on good healthful food, Brad is living on garbage. He is not as intelligent and enlightened as you are. Education is a wonderful thing but the blue collar masses will never realize that. They are just primitive, so let them be! John, you are an intelligent man with better things to than to educate a primitive like Brad!

  9. What I wear, makes no difference on whether I am proud or a real man (neither would wearing a suit and custom italian shoes).

    Yes I have been drunk and it does come up on occasion. I am a little to old to be talking about kicking people’s ass (although I figure I can hold my own if it came to it) . I am married so I don’t think I talk about getting “laid” very often.

    Sounds to me like like you are uninformed. It doesn’t matter whether you are blue collar or white collar, some people never grow up (mature) . I know several lawyers, financial analysts and professional students that I still consider immature.

    I agree with your analysis on critical thinking (in the future you should display it in your responses).

    “Superior quality living” (sounds like a bad infomercial for a recliner)

    From the few thoughts you have written down, you seem to very one dimensional (at least in regards to the topic at-hand).

    I hope you develop your critical thinking skills. Perhaps you will gain a bit more perspective on the world around you. Good luck with the maturation process.

  10. Joe,

    With all due respect, any man who hasn’t even mastered basic grammar – learning the difference between ‘to’ and ‘too,’ especially well into adulthood, ha ha, is hardly in a position to finger point others of critical thinking (I like how you ‘remembered’ to put a hyphen in between “at-hand” which is strange and ridiculous, yet forgot to put it in “one dimensional”)

    Ironically, this backward grammatical logic is consistent with the rest of your backward thinking.

    The fastest way to find inferior critical thinking is when a person tries to disprove a generalization with an exception. Generalizations are true BECAUSE exceptions are so few that they are considered EXCEPTIONS.

    I don’t need to be right with every single case, nor do I care to; just enough of them. If your car breaks down in the middle of the night in a violent ghetto, you shouldn’t be comforted because there’s a 2% chance you’re safe instead of a 98% chance that you’re in a lot of trouble.

    While I don’t know the exact percent of blue collared people who have pride in ridiculous things such as being tough, getting drunk and getting laid, it doesn’t matter. ENOUGH OF THEM DON’T EVER GROW UP.

    The majority of them ignore educating themselves. The majority of them are ok with living the same mindless life day after day, devoid of growth. The majority think anything refined is ‘gay’ because it conflicts with this brain dead notion of ‘tough’.

    Like it or not, these are huge problems with the blue collar community and some of the many reasons they are vastly south of white collar.

    • Congratulations on your supposed mastery of the English language.

      I am sure your private school upbringing or being routinely shoved into lockers has somehow warped your perception of the world.

      • dear john ; your choice of words and examples are tough to swallow and digest even though looking at real life you are right on the money . i am sure most people would rather choose white collar jobs than blue but some time opportunities play a role . being a blue collar does not mean
        you do not want to evolve. is Jordan ( basketball player ) white or blue ? level of education !
        can everybody be a white collar ? there are many steps to higher achievements . and being a CEO of a company is not an achievable dream for the world it is just for a few elite

  11. I’m graduating this December with a bachelors degree in Finance and Management and I have also managed to graduate with highest honors. Now, I’m not saying this to brag, instead I’m pointing this out so everyone knows I’m on the “superior path” of becoming a white collar worker. The funny thing about this is that as soon as I graduate I am going to become an electrician.

    John states that most blue collar people are simply unable or unwilling to get an education, therefore they are inferior. They are also inferior because they make less money, and everyone know making more money is the most important thing in the world, right?

    After having multiple white collar internships during college, I have realized this line of work is not for me. I don’t enjoy sitting at a desk, staring at a computer screen all day inside my cubicle working for some distant corporate objective, this is not how humans were meant to live. On the other hand, I have worked construction during the summers and find a great amount of satisfaction from it. I’m outside, with sun shining on me, getting exercise and at the same time I’m providing a most basic human need of creating shelter for someone.

    I doubt John knows what it feels like to be exhausted from a day of good hard work and taking pride in what has been created from your own two hands, a strong back and sweat. If he is happy being an ant in the corporate ant farm, let him, that’s one less competitor in the blue collar world.

    • The top part responds to Nate. For those other than Nate, skip to where the asterisks are.

      I’ve read Nate’s response.

      I find it a little suspect how you said you will graduate with “highest honors,” yet like a lay person, didn’t know to call it by it’s rightful name: “summa cum laude.”

      If you were worried some blue collar people may not know what it means, why not explain it in parentheses? At least this way it doesn’t sound like you’re a liar who doesn’t even know the term for what you’re lying about. – Like saying: “I’m gonna be one of those guys that opens people’s heads and fixes stuff in there,” instead of knowing enough to yourself a Neurosurgeon.

      Anyway, I also find it interesting that such an ‘erudite (scholarly) person’ as yourself was lightning fast to accuse me of claiming “money is the most important thing in the world.”

      The quickest review of the comments shows that it was ‘Electric Makes The World Go Round’ who bragged that his blue collar job makes him so much money to visit across the world, and how he out-earned most white-collar workers, NOT ME.

      In fact, I responded by saying that I didn’t even want to bring up financial differences but he opened the can of worms.

      **************Anyway here’s what I’m suggesting: in general, the white-collar path is the superior route.

      A person who ‘gets the thinking’ behind white-collar culture appreciates quality, class, sophistication. He is hungry to educate himself of the entire world because he knows there’s a heck of a lot more to it than drinking with his buddies at the neighborhood bar. Blue-collar believe it ok to be loud, disruptive and to curse in public. White-collar don’t find this ‘cool’ or ‘tough’ at all, but TRASHY.

      The blue-collar mind can’t seem to understand this because class is flat-out alien to them. They, like animal society, think the black and white terms of domination. Everything is either tough or weak. ‘Cool’ or ‘gay’.

      Because of this limitation, blue-collar don’t know how to interpret sophistication. It doesn’t fit within their ‘tough or weak’ model of reality and so they misinterpret white-collar politeness as weak. A man who is polished is too abstract a concept for these people. He must be ‘gay’.

      We walk around the white-collar neighborhood and see huge opulent estates. The properties are well manicured, the people have respect for their appearance and live quietly and peacefully, never imposing their living conditions on others.

      We walk through blue-collar neighborhoods and see people walking around in filthy clothes, (since when is bathing only the privilege of the rich?) days of beard stubble on both men and women, arguments that can even lead to fist fight over nothing more than sports teams, the 2:30 police call in response to the latest drunken domesticate dispute.

      But hey, I guess that’s being ‘tough’.

      • John, speaking of the value of education and class to a blue collar worker is totally analogous to a Roman discussing civilization to a Hun. It is not going to work. To put it quite succinctly, blue collar people are just that….inferior and barbaric in consciousness. You cannot change them and in my opinion, I would not want to change them. Some people are just content to be just……..well, slaves. We intellectual and educated classes need slaves to do the dirty work. Thank God it is neither I nor you.

  12. John your explanation of the topic is beyond most readers logic and reasoning. I know your position quite well because I went from Blue collar to White collar. I have also serve in the military so, I consider myself well knowledgeable.

    So, I declare John the winner because I have live what he is stating and I am working toward the superior route that is being defended. I have friends and family that still think inside the “Blue collar” bubble. So their ideal or concept of “tough” is void because I am college graduate , veteran, and former blue collar worker ( I work my way thru college ). I never seen breaking my back as a validation for being tough. I consider my service to this country tough, but once again the Military, Police officer, Firefighter are position in society that are not consider white collar or blue collar. They are the phenomenons within our society , however they are above your average blue collar position.

    Finally, I agree with John, we in America want to sugar coat things because we do not want to hurt people feelings. The fact of the matter is that most of the Blue Collar people raise their children to become White collar and White collar families raise their kids to stay White collar. When a White collar child decide to go the Blue collar route, not every time , but most of time his is seen as not aspiring for greatness or in other words a failure. I do not agree with this logic because I understand the intellectual concept. Everyone does not fit into for White collar role within our society. Yet, this is the truth. And we all know that sometimes the truth hurts. If this was not case, why do so many White collar talk about their parents pushing them to get an education.

    The bottom line is simple. We as a society may not like people like “John” in this world. However we as a society need people like John in this world. People like John are your Doctor, Lawyers, Police Officer, Fireman, Military, CEO’s, Business Owners ( Legitimate Business not bottom dwellers economics)

    Once last example, I offer this to urge the Blue Collar person to seek a higher level of reasoning. I am sure all of are familiar with the old Gangsta Movies. You know, Scare farce, Godfather, Good-fellas, Casino etc. In those movies they Gangsta are present as the hero for the blue collar guy. The unite the Blue Collar guys to form Union and get better working condition , pay and benefits for blue collar workers. I am respect this presentation and I am not against. However, most people fail to see the one true motivator for all the Gangsta in the movie. In all the Gangsta movie the highest achievement for them is become White Collar or ” moving their money into legitimate business”. If this was not case, why do the original gangsta dress in business suits to try to blend in with white collar men? Once again this example prove John point. The Blue collar guy needs to grow up and educate himself about the world not just his community. Once again, man did not survive with Blue Collar logic or reasoning. If that was the case, we would all still be walking around bare foot in the desert of Africa.

    My apology for Grammar and punctuation errors. I wrote this on my Phone. Oh, I have a Bachelor degree in Philosophy. Yes, I am a Philosopher. I understand how society is made and how it function.. John is correct.

    • Police officers, firemen, and most enlisted military are not white collar. Military officers are a tougher call as its going to depend on what they’re doing. And for business owners it depends on the business. Most are probably not white collar.

      As far as the mobster movies: I don’t think any normal person would look at those folks as heros no matter what their position in life. A modern day equivalent to those movies might be kids in the hood that aspire to be crack dealers or something since that’s the only economy they really know. While crack dealing is probably more of a blue collar job than white, the kids aspiring to that don’t do it because their parents are blue collar. Most of their parents aren’t any collar – most are on welfare, have few marketable skills, and just work odd jobs. That’s just a situation of kids not knowing any better.

      • BY THE WAY I’M NOT THE SAME “JOHN” AS THE ONE WHO MADE THAT RIDICULOUS THREAT. I’m the John who has been favoring white-collar people.

        I think there is a more important message here than drawing lines in the sand over who is blue-collar.

        White collar is synonymous with Education.

        Education is the single greatest killer of nearly all evil. When you are educated you are less violent, less savage, you make superior decisions; this drastically improves your quality of life.

        Think about the common problem that all third world nations have: they are SIMPLE AND IGNORANT. This is the common denominator. Think of all the impoverished South American countries, the African Countries, etc..,

        Sure there are Eastern European countries that are poor too. But this is a very different type of poverty. Eastern Europe has a rich history and make NO MISTAKE, they will and are rebuilding. They have the crucial difference: hope and prospects.

        Countries with ignorant people are like helpless babies. They don’t have this “hope” because their collective mind is stuck on simple and ignorant thinking.

        When you think of countries with the strongest economies 1. Burkina Faso 12.8%
        2. Niger 14.4
        3. Mali 19.0
        4. Chad 25.5
        5. Sierra Leone 29.6
        6. Benin 33.6
        7. Afghanistan 36.0
        8. Gambia 37.8
        9. Senegal 39.3
        10. Guinea-Bissau 39.6

        Some of these countries have an average age of death in the 40-year-old range. Now compare this to countries with the strongest economy:

        Austria
        Denmark
        Finland
        France
        Germany
        Luxembourg

        These are all well-educated nations.

        So in summary, the more we can move the masses away from valuing something as meaningless as the blue-collar man’s obsession with “tough and cool” and into valuing the white-collar man’s values of personal development and intelligence, the better we will be.

        Blue-collar people: take the baseball cap off your children and put a BOOK in their hands. People are competitive by nature and will fight to be the best at anything they value. So rewire your children by bragging about SMART people in history (the Einsteins in history, the Hawkings, the doctors who cured horrific diseases, powerful billionaire businessmen, etc…)

        Let them grow up taking pride in how smart and savy they are, NOT how tough they are. They will grow up healthier with more opportunities and more freedom.

        Freedom doens’t come from baseball caps, but that “gay” thing called knowledge.

        • The people in this thread are so ignorant. Realize when you are sitting a your tiny little desks in a room with other tiny little desks plumbers, electricians, HVAC, auto mechanics, truck drivers, etc. that you may think are beneath you in most instances are pulling in more money than 90% of you. Right now almost everyone goes to college, an average college alone will not get you ahead. Their are less and less people going into the educated blue collar work force, which means if you have the skills you make huge money. These jobs are in demand and not just anyone can do those blue collar jobs, they take skills. In many instances, a blue collar worker in those fields could go to your job and pull it off. You would never be able to fill any of their shoes. Most white collar workers would have no idea what you were doing in any of the more handy fields.
          None of you are making money if you are commenting in this thread, go to work and maybe you won’t have to talk about money and what you want to earn.

          • Jessica, your thinking is FRIGHTENING.

            -I must step in right away and respond to everything she has said.

            When I see a person can not even write a simple response without serious grammatical errors, it’s apparent the level of thinking involved… Sorry but it’s true. 

            Look, I get that we are all busy and might get a little sloppy with our writing. But there’s entire chunks of your writing that are almost unintelligible.  

            Yes, it’s that bad.  

            Anyway, if you want to cherry pick high earning blue collar jobs, I will simply bring up high earning white collar careers like being a corporate CEO, who can give himself a yearly bonus that’s bigger than all your blue collar professions combined.  

            I’m sure he’s more than happy in his (NOT so “tiny desk”)

            **Remember 1% of the population control 42% of all the nations income.  And guess who makes up NEARLY ALL the top 1%?  -WHITE COLLAR PERSONS!! **

            Although some blue collar workers are college educated, the VAST majority are NOT (think garbage man, neighborhood mechanic, plumber, janitor, etc.., etc.., etc..,) while the vast majority of white collar IS college educated. In fact, white collar is almost synonymous with education!

            Look at the payscale difference:

            High-school grad (which describes most blue collar people) earn $27,915 per year.
            College grad (almost all white collar people) earn $51,206.

            This means in the course of working 40 years, someone without a college education will make $1,116,600 while the college group will make over 2,048,204!  That’s almost a Million dollar difference!  

            Quality of living:

            Many blue collar people are exposed to dangerous work environments.

            Even handling motor oil on a semi-regular basis is HIGHLY cancerous.  This is commonplace for a mechanic.

            Fumigators exposed to pesticides everyday; painters exposed to paint fumes, men who years ago worked with insulation now dying like flies from Asbestos poisoning, garbage men risk acquiring all types diseases from handling waste.  Men working at construction sites and factories injuring themselves (often Permanently) from handling heavy or dangerous product.  

            While companies may provide protection against these conditions, often these protections are inadequate or unrealistic in a “real work environment.”

            As you can imagine, blue collar people live shorter lives, and suffer much higher instances of lifelong pain and illness.  Ask any blue collar guy how many fellow blue collar persons he knows on Disability and it can be staggering. 

            In summary, those “wimpy” white collar guys (as you imply) in their “lame” offices EARN MORE, KNOW MORE (from their on average higher education) and live healthier and longer lives.  

            In fact, in almost every measurable way the white collar route proves the superior choice in life.  Being smart enough to pick the RIGHT path towards living smarter, better and longer is what MAKES A MAN A REAL MAN. 

            Giving away the best years of your life and health to a job that will never pay you what you deserve, is NOT being a “real man.”  It only proves you’re a “real” IDIOT.  

          • John, comparing salaries of the average college grad to the average HS grad is a useless exercise. You may as well compare the average surgeon to the average guy behind the counter at Burger King and tell the BK employee to go to medical school.

            The truth is there’s a huge salary range for both the college and HS only crowds. And most HS only folks simply do not have the intellectual ability to handle the better paying white collar professions. They could not cut it in engineering school or medical school (even if the AMA cartel would actually let them in). So if you just want to have a pissing contest about who’s smarter then of course the white collar employees in general are going to win that. But if you actually want to discuss what options a certain kid should take then you have to admit its more complicated than just telling everybody to go to college.

            For instance lets say we’re talking about some kid in the 50th percentile of his HS class. Assuming he performed exactly at his ability in high school then its fair to say this kid has no shot at medicine, dentistry, or pharmacy and won’t have the grades in college to get into any presigious law or business school. Any decent engineering school is also outside the realm of possibilities. So he’s left with some majors that don’t pay as much. But on the blue collar path on the other hand he’d be one of the smartest people and a good candidate for the better paying blue collar occupations. So which path is actually better for him? A below average white collar salary or an above average blue collar salary? The idealist free market guy in me says it doesn’t actually matter and he’ll end up with a similar lifestyle no matter what. Of course that’s an ideal scenario. I could argue for either path, really.

        • John,

          Things are not so clear-cut as you make them out to be. I do know blue-collar workers who make their money and take it straight to the pub, but I also know blue-collar workers who make their money and invest in better tools and equipment, who up-skill to become masters of their craft.

          I agree with you that a white-collar profession has benefits which a blue-collar profession would not. There is no shelf-life on the mind which makes a white-collar profession preferable in this one regard. But you would have people believe that all blue-collar workers are slack-jawed yokels! Blue-collar jobs, such as working in construction, require knowledge and skills just as working as an accountant or a physical therapist do. Sure, being a truck-driver or a postman may not require a great deal of brain activity, but neither does being a receptionist or a PA.

          I think you have made a personal attack on blue-collar workers which is a shame, because there is some merit to your argument that white-collar jobs are preferable to blue-collar jobs and I know blue-collar workers who would agree with that sentiment. But by attacking the character of blue-collar workers, you’ve opened this thread up to encompass all number of things. What about job satisfaction, following your strengths and passions, love? Are not electricians, mechanics, builders educated? I know a lot about biochemistry but nothing of architecture. The point is that we all have strengths and weaknesses and your ‘collar-colour’ says little about how good a parent or citizen we are. Did you know that blue-collar workers are more likely to donate blood and be organ-donors? To donate their bodies for scientific research?

          The world isn’t black and white. And we are more than just our jobs.

          • I agree with pretty much everything you’re saying. But unfortunately there sort of is a shelf-life on the mind. Most people just aren’t as sharp at 60 as they were at 30. At that point they need the value of their experience to carry them. If that experience isn’t worth much (think some guy who spent his whole career honing some now-obsolete skill) then nobody is going to hire that old guy. The shelf life of the mind is definitely longer than that of the knees or the back though. Or at least the condition of the mind at 60 is usually better than the knees or the back at that age.

    • John – you have just reached a new level of a stereotypical moron. Your views regarding the difference in pay scale between blue and white collar is moajority of the time accurate but your views on character are way off and idiotic. To say all blue collar works never grow up, just want to party and have no cultural education is ridiculous. I know plenty of college educated 35 year old men who still think they are frat boys. They drive ridiculously expensive cars they cant afford and still have competitions with their friends to see who can take home the most girls from a bar. They have no idea what is important in life.

      I think you’re the one who needs some cultural education and some exploration of the society around you.

      By they way- I am a Master Degree recipient from Rutgers business marrying a blue collar man who just earned his master plumbers license and is starting a new job at Princeton university making $120k a year. Thank you very much.

      • You say “thank you very much” but have established exactly nothing in your post.

        Anecdotes of some college educated guys still acting immature, just like citing blue collar workers who may frequent museums, is NOT BY ANY MEANS GAME CHANGING.

        Why is it so difficult to understand the concept of GENERALizations? In GENERAL white collar persons are more sophisticated, cultured, even-tempered, and development oriented.

        This general condition is worth discussing rather than the exception because the exceptions are just that; ONLY EXCEPTIONS.

        Secondly, are you actually ‘proud’ you landed a plumber? Are you really?…

        Even a somewhat reasonable person would at times secretly feel ambivalent.

        Also, I doubt you possess a Master’s degree (you didn’t even know enough to use correct grammar for your own alleged degree. The degree that the Master possesses is the ‘Master’s degree,’ not “Master degree”. This is basic possessive grammar.)

        Anyway, in the scenario of a woman with a Master’s degree marrying a plumber, let’s ignore our ingrained American ‘rooting for the underdog,’ and approach this with some hard but real honesty.

        IF you see education as more than a piece of paper to make more money, then you will value its other extremely important benefits.

        High-level communication, profoundly developed critical thinking skills from years and years of rigorous university testing (sorry, but simply reading a lot of books on your own without independent testing of your comprehension, is NOT the same) are NOT reasonably tradable or compatible to a plumber who makes good money.

        At the Master’s level, one should especially value their education because it gave them SO much knowledge that they are now a “leader of thought”.

        The Master’s thinking is permanently and inalienably beyond what it was before college. His irreplaceable accomplishment makes for an unforgivably large bottleneck when explaining his concepts and thinking to a spouse with a comparatively untrained mind.

        You should NEVER be in a relationship where you have to ‘dumb down’ your words and thinking to accommodate a person who’s at a vastly different level than you. And whatever you may say, THERE IS NO WAY this is not happening when a Master’s degree level person is communicating with a plumber.

        This is a bastardization to all that one’s accomplished. The highly trained mind deserves to be with other such persons to prevent their potential from being suppressed. Your children deserve to hear uniformity between how well each parent articulates themselves which consequently also represents uniformity in their parents values, and NOT this awkward lopsidedness.

  13. But hey, lets not argue about your children here because i know where your daughter’s school is. i will take necessary actions to teach them a lesson if you think you’re better than me

    • Really john threatening a child, now i know shes better then you i am better then you, 90% of the people in the world (that includes the homeless bums) are better then you. Only a monster would threaten a child. You are worse then the lowest of the low, and that comes from a lowly blue collar welder (WHO PUTS TOGETHER ALMOST EVERY THING YOU OWN YOU IGNORANT PIECE OF SHIT) I am sick of this, life would be impossible if it wasn’t for the blue collar workers. If it wasn’t for us you would be forced to build you own house, grow your own food, and cook it, there’s many many more examples. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you John our you will be fucked.

  14. John, really?

    “i know where your daughter’s school is. i will take necessary actions to teach them a lesson if you think you’re better than me”

    You’re really going to make such a threat to someone like that? Number 1: You would be punishing the guy’s daughters for HIM thinking (and rightfully so) that he is better than you.

    Number 2: If you keep running your mouth making threats like that and go anywhere near the daughters’ school, a blue-collar man will put a nice shiny pair of braceletts around your wrists, bring you to a place where a bunch of orange-collar folks will teach YOU a lesson.

    Watch who you threaten, and watch what you say.

    • that John person is extremely odd. He has single handedly proved my point. There is no way he makes any amount of money and is living on his own.

      • Jessica,

        I’m sure you and your family members are blue collar and what I’ve been saying affects you deeply. Or perhaps you will believe as you will no matter how much sense a person tries to shake into you because the truth is too inconvenient to accept.

        But either way, blue collar is the inferior path.

        My mantra has been to say that white collar people are in large more intelligent and educated, and that intelligence transfers into every other part of our daily decision making.

        We think better, live longer, more successful, healthier lives.

        I get that many (particularly blue collar) women defend their workhorse men by saying they feel “protected around them” especially if they happen to be in a bad neighborhood and their safety is in question. They say it’s like walking around with your own ‘human pitbull’ by your side.

        My answer to that is simple: statistically you are actually in FAR MORE danger from your big “protective” blue collar man than whatever’s out there on the streets!

        The chance that you will be randomly attacked by a stranger, compared to the victim of domestic abuse is almost laughable. It’s literally HUNDREDS of times more likely that your “big brave” blue collar man is exactly the person who be one the beating YOU! If you don’t believe the staggering crime statistics and restraining orders, visit any shelter for abused women and ask them who abused them..

        Not only is the white collar man SUBSTANTIALLY less prone to violence, his lifestyle keeps you out these questionable situations TO BEGIN WITH.

        In other words, he’s going to earn more money so you don’t have to live in or near these dodgy neighborhoods where these elements exist to even be a factor!

        Further, he’s far less likely to go to the local dive bar for example, where other ego driven blue collar men & bikers are getting drunk and looking to prove something.

    • holy heck don’t say things like that

  15. First off, let me say that I was born into a blue collar (middle class) family. I wont say my exact age but lets say I’m a young adult.

    BUT: As somebody who has family on ‘both sides’ (blue collar and white collar); this is what I have found out: the majority of White Collar people have intellectual smarts but lack street smarts. Blue Collar people on the other hand have more of a ‘kinesthetic intelligence’ than ‘book smart’ intelligence. Hence why they work with their hands. Not to mention the compensation for book smart intelligence with rude comments and a know-it-all arrogant attitude. Blue collar people tend to think with their emotions when making decisions more so than White Collar people. White collar people tend to weigh out the pros and cons of situations and utilize logic to make their decisions. They also know that they aren’t right all the time. From knowing that they are not right all the time they learn from their mistakes. Improvement is a must for them. Blue Collar people generally don’t learn from their mistakes and NEVER want to expand their outlook on life. Or their skills. Limited thinking/beliefs/culture of the blue collar is disgusting.

    I see the negative attributes with Blue Collars constantly. Extremely NEGATIVE attitude(s) with very few POSITIVE ideas to build wealth.

    Thankfully I have been blessed with Metacognition. Learning is a lot easier when you know how you think. Blue collar people don’t WANT to understand how they think because they have so much pride ie. they think they know everything. So I am planning NOT to be like my (blue collar) side of the family. I keep my subconcious behavior in check (most of the time) while, at the same time, I am constantly re-wiring my mind from blue collar thinking to a white collar outlook. If that makes any sense.

    There is no way I’m going to retire with numerous medical problems because of the back breaking work the majority of blue collar people do + drug addictions. Alcohol and Nicotine addiction are common in the blue collar community. Not to mention illegitimate pregnancies.

    To sum it up: Most of what John says is hurtful but very true. Unfortunately.

    Sincerely envious of the white collar,
    Jdude

  16. I’ve read all the above comments and I see something that has not been said. I’m a white collar worker in the office, and I say the following in favor of the blue collar worker. The blue collar worker is the backbone of society and our country. White collar people depend on the blue collar people, whether they want to admit it or not. For example, the car that the white collar person drives to work, a blue collar man got dirty building and fixing it. The food at the restaurant where the white collar guy frequents for lunch, a blue collar person is sweating over the grill to make that sandwich.
    The blue collar person drives the garbage truck when he picks up the “WC person’s garbage”. As much as we white collars would like feel superior to blue collars, if the blue collars were to stop working, we W C workers could not function. THE TRUTH IS, WE ARE BOTH DEPENDENT UPON ONE ANOTHER. Get it straight!

  17. Bill,

    Comparing high-school grads to college is, on the contrary, anything BUT useless.

    As with most broad subjects, we are not focused on the exceptions but rather what applies to the bulk. The “bulk” of blue collar are high school graduates, and the bulk of white collar are college grads.

    The comparisons in salary are fair because while the hat doesn’t always fit this way (obviously not all blue collar are only high school grads), it certainly hits the mark OFTEN ENOUGH.

    You asked what path would be better for just an ‘average student’.

    Yes, it’s certainly reasonable to say that a “student ranked at even the 50th percentile” and is perhaps community college material, would live a better life through a white collar path than blue collar. Yes, white collars earn more, but as I’ve mentioned elsewhere, they win the race FOR SO MANY MORE REASONS THAN THAT. (again we are speaking in general. It’s a label for each individual and it doesn’t care to be.)

    Let’s examine them:

    1. As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, while both paths can be psychologically taxing, White collar people do not abuse or exhaust their bodies. Many blue collar professions involve the handling of heavy materials, dangerous and potentially life threatening machinery, toxic and potentially lethal chemicals, etc..,

    Thus statistically, blue collar people live shorter lives, and lives with very high incidents of lifelong work related pain, injury and illness.

    2. White collar has a different philosophy in general than blue collar. The white collar philosophy is based on the premise of continual improvement. From the bump to a hill and a hill to a mountain.

    Blue collar people are generally violentally close-minded & set in their ways. Their focus is NOT on the long term, which is why they usually don’t diet as well, they don’t sacrifice years in college, and this thinking is exactly why they don’t consider the previously mentioned consequences of accepting a labor intensive job.

    The treadmill of their work and life in general has them going nowhere and just wearing them out.

    3. The ‘opportunity cost’ of blue collar’s contempt of learning. Many blue collar people consider learning ‘nerdy’. They have the macho attitude that they have everything in life already figured out. And whatever they don’t know “they don’t care to know.”

    White collar persons see things like college and learning as a rigorous process to not only learn more but more importantly, THINK MORE INTELLIGENTLY.

    In cognitive psychology, this is called TRANSFERABILTY. That means this new found intelligence will ‘transfer’ it’s benefits to just about every other aspect of your day-to-day life. –When you shop, you’re a smarter consumer, when you eat, you diet intelligently. When you consider a job, or need to articulate an idea to others, or when you examine ANY situation, you do so with more incite, etc.., etc.., -you will simply LIVE A SMARTER LIFE.

    You can not measure or put a salary on this benefit. But it is always overlooked when considering the differences between white and blue collar although it’s ironically the most important distinction.

    TRUE white collar persons realize that being white collar is a Culture -a way of life. College education, tailored clothing, refined music, fine foods & spirits, world travel; are all merely SYMPTOMS of what it means to be “white collar”.

    True White collar people almost subconsciously know to seek these things because they know that each experience adds that much more breadth and depth to them as a cultured person. They love life and how profound it is, and want to experience it from the vivid perspective that only a developed mind can give.

    THESE ARE THE REASONS WHITE COLLAR IS INDEFINITELY SUPERIOR TO BLUE COLLAR. IT’S SO MUCH MORE THAN A HIGHER SALARY

  18. I just got out of the oil patch making 80k a year to start a career in the gas industry, find a 19 year old or any guy my age just getting out of college making that kind of money – and let me know.

    There are low paying blue collar jobs, and there are high paying blue collar jobs. The same applies to white collar as well.

    Income is based on your potential. You are limited to what you can achieve.

  19. David

    Time has pass since I check this website, and I see the same ill logic is still plauging the debate. I think one of the blogger stated the concept of the argument. He stated ” the mind is does not have a shelf life”. I will not say anymore on this because I promise myself this year to not argue with people that do not understand the debate. Once again as a former U.S. Solider ( Plato define Solider, Police , Firefighter as Warrior class) , a former fork lift driver, and baggage handler ( Plato title these jobs as working class) ,and as a college graduate with a B.A. in Philosophy ( Plato deem this as Philospher kings or professional class) John is still the undisputed champ..

  20. I wasn’t able to finish college because my family couldn’t afford to pay for all 4 years of it and I was later forced to take a job working on an assembly line to pay the bills. Glad to know this makes me an inherently inferior person despite the fact that I’m more intelligent than the engineers that my company employs.

  21. so this one day i just had a huge boner…

    • Let me begin my post by saying, at first, I could not at all understand this animousity towards one another. This John individual everyone seems to more or less direct their attention to does seem to have some form of deep rooted angst towards blue collar individuals, and may even seem to have some form of superiority complex. At first. I myself did not agree with his overgeneralization of working class individuals, but once he mentioned that he was speaking in a more broadened scope, and not speaking of any acceptions to the rule, I had to accept that some of what he is saying is true.

      I had intened to use myself as an example, but I believe that I would fall into the ” exception to the rule” category. I graduated from college with a 3.99 GPA, my personal interests include a wide range of music, astronomy, physics, art (I myself do portraits), philosophy, and technology. I play the piano, the trumbone, and the guitar. I have traveled abroad (currently only to multiple parts of Italy), and have interests in japanese, native american, indian, and indian cultures. I also have interests in nature, history, and geograghy. I am an avid reader and am constantly seeking to expand my knowledge. I also have a better than average understanding of physical fitness and nutrition and regularly excercise to keep myself in good health. All of this, and I myself am only a “blue collar” worker. I am a diesel engineer and enjoy every day of my physical occupation, not because I have to, but by choice. Also, there are these wonderfull inventions called tools that, when used correctly, alows me to do my job in a more efficient and less strenuous manner. The saying goes in my shop “work smarter, not harder”. Use the proper proceedures and equipment to do your job, and you won’t be broken down by the age of 50.

      My point? One does not have to be a “white collar” individual to live their life properly. I agree with John that education is highly underated, but mental capacity and earning capability isn’t all there is to life. It’s about fullfillment. I enjoy working with my hands just as much as I enjoy reading. I don’t believe that makes me an “inferior” person just because I chose to do physical labor. I am by no means wealthy, but my family does’t wish for anything I can not eventually provide either. You don’t have to be a CEO of a multimillion dollar company and wear a suit every day of your life to actually enjoy life. There is more I could add to this, but as I stated earlier, I must be an exception to the rule, or part of the minority of blue collar workers because I by no means fit into the generalization of blue collar workers that has been made in this forum.

      • Not to sound flippant, but I find Byron’s “3.99″ GPA, suspect.

        Byron’s a so-called ‘academic’, and yet he doesn’t seem to have decided if it’s an “acception” or “exception” to the rule, as he’s used both spellings.
        ‘Wonderful’ has one l, not two, ‘underrated’ has two r’s, not one, etc..,

        Persons with high GPA’s do not tend to commit these grade school errors..

        Anyway, I’m not sure why people try to relate their personal story. As I’ve said over and over and Over, we are speaking about the MASSES. My criticisms don’t come from pulling one specific person and then judging the blue collar culture on this person. That’s not sensible.

        I’m speaking of the general tendencies of the (blue collar) culture.

        Accordingly, I don’t care if once you knew a friend who put a quarter in a slot machine and won thousands. It has NO BEARING on the fact that gambling In General is a losing game. Do you understand where I’m going? Anecdotes do absolutely NOTHING but waste bytes on a web page.

        Byron, even in your personal example, a white collar person will STILL enjoy significant benefits above the blue collar. While still extant, things like vulgarity, small-minded/emotionally based hatred and bitterness, are truncated amongst the white collar.

        Many blue collar persons have a growling, piss-poor attitude because their life has little hope for meaningful progress. On the exterior, their actions are always ‘take charge!’, and they try to come across as having everything in life already ‘figured out’.

        But internally however, it shocks them that their personal philosophies have left them demoralized and defeated (you will Never get them to admit this because their egos do not permit any sign of weakness).

        If you have a white collar heart, PLEASE thrust yourself into associating with white collar persons. If you don’t believe there are meaningful differences, go to a supermarket in a blue collar neighborhood and juxtapose it to one in a white collar neighborhood- do some people watching.

        Go to say, a Whole Foods Market in a white collar neighborhood. Notice how well-mannered and classy (-an entirely alien word to the blue collar) the customers are.

        On the other hand, go to a supermarket in a blue collar neighborhood.. Watch how blue collar socialize: how loud and disruptive they are even about things that have nothing to do with them. Listen to them curse a storm in everyday speaking, often around or even at their own children.
        (These children suffer the almost terminal fate of they themselves becoming trashy and one-dimensional as they grow into adulthood, furthering the cycle.)

        In general, ( <— notice that word) blue collar culture is toxic and a degradation to the human potential of Refinement, Class and Nobility.

        It should be eschewed like any bad habit.

  22. I’m impressed this convo went on for a year!

    But in all seriousness however, the offloading of blue collar jobs in North America to distant economies are ensuring that lower tiered white collar jobs are becoming the new blue collar.

    I wouldn’t dispute John’s values on education, nor his dedication for keeping this conversation going for so long. I would find disturbing however his stereotyping of workers based on class.

    Blue Collar as John seems to define it, does very much seem to be a blight on society. However I’m fairly certain this is the stigma which the article indicates is attached to the Blue Collar title. Stating that vulgarity, small-minded/emotionally based hatred and bitterness are reduced in white collar society may not be entirely true.

    I would enjoy some statistics on the subject if some that were unbiased existed. That fact that such a survey may exist might introduce a bias in the statistics gathering method unfortunately.

  23. There is a word to describe people like John. That word is elitist. He talks about travelling to different parts of the world, having refined taste for music, food and clothes and learning about different cultures. How is it then, that he could be so ignorant about people that do work that is considered blue collar? Not all people define themselves by what they do for a living. The Lord Jesus could have been anything He wanted to be, but He decided to be a carpenter. The worst atrocities commited against humanity have been by people that were members of the intelligenstia community. I thank God that He doesn’t judge men the way we do. God looks at the heart. Anyone that despises people based on social class, education or income is prideful, arrogant and a fool. Some of the most decent people you can ever meet come from both blue and white color.

  24. I do realize that I misspelled a few words. I typed this very quickly preferring to focus more on thought than grammar. I say this because some people like to use this as a red herring to take away from the underlying point.

  25. You have a pea for a brain. It is obvious that some plumber, electrician or construction worker took your girlfriend or wife for you to say such foolish things. Or maybe you had your butt handed to you by one of them. You are like the gum underneath my shoe, very annoying. I feel sorry for you because you feel that you must belittle and insult people to have self worth. You are a parasite that knows only to take and not give. You have no right to devalue what a person does for a living because you are a clueless little wimp with an inferiority complex.

    • J.O.

      Your personal attacks (saying “pea brain”, etc..,) are exactly what makes branding blue collar people facile.

      Also, you still don’t seem to ‘get’ what I keep saying.

      I don’t argue that white collar persons can be vulgar or limited too. But the story here is in the numbers. Blue collar people are FAR more likely to be vulgar, one-dimensional, and complacent.

      White collar generally understand the need for a CULTURE. Broad-mindedness and personal development is VERY important to the white collar. Conversely, these aims are NOT at all important to most (<–notice that word) blue collar people. In fact, they are actually "proud" to be simple.

      The white collar man is not the same man as he was 10 years earlier or especially 10 years before that. The blue collar man's maturity fixates at that of a teenager- same low-brow ribald humor, same day-to-day mentality.

      White collar people are 'self-conscious'. I mean this in a very good way. Before we behave, we consider how it will affect people around us. We make sure we are not loud, vulgar or disruptive in public because we know it will bother others.

      Blue collar are just the opposite. They use the public as the perfect forum to assert their ego driven dominance. They meddle in the affairs of strangers. They curse freely and with the obnoxious attitude of "if you have a problem with it, DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!".

      Because they know white collar people react defensively and almost never initiate, when in mixed company blue collar people purposely start attacks on gray area topics; hoping to instigate innocent bystanders.

      It is for these reasons and many many more that I implore people with a white collar spirit to dissociate from these persons.

  26. John,

    Though I truly despise the manner in which you have made your argument (the condescending, pompous and elitist tone mainly), I cannot deny the basic truths of it. I am a builder and am daily surrounded by other people of my ilk, whilst my personal circle of friends and family are generally “white collar”. Having my work friends and personal friends so divided, there is no doubt in my mind that the “blue collar” are in GENERAL less intelligent.

    Now, I know that many blue collars (I have deliberately dispensed with the inverted commas as they grow tedious) may be up in arms at my betrayal, they can not deny that if the two types were held side by side for comparison, the blue collar has a lower base end intelligence (I’m talking about the lifelong labourers, factory hands etc). Of course the higher end of this intelligence chart would be much more comparable, but I’ll still give the edge to white collar.

    HOWEVER,

    the part of your argument that I disagree with, is the gross generalisation of, and in fact, exaggeration of the white collars virtues, while inverse treatment is given to the blue collars.

    Whilst there is a cultural disparity between the two classes, I do not believe it to be the great divide you are describing.

    According to the picture you paint, on one hand we have a Utopian class of free thinkers who are constantly engrossed in expanding their minds, and on the other, a seething mass of ape-like men who are solely seeking to satiate their base desires of sexual gratification, blood-lust and chemical oblivity( I invented that but it suits and sounds vaguely poetic so I’m sticking with it).

    Based on my observations, which are solely my own so sadly cannot be regarded as empirical, this divide is much closer than you would have people believe. The white collar population is not en masse flipping through the Great Books nor are they strolling through the ruins of ancient Rome and Athens.

    YES, the percentage of culturally leaning people amongst the white collars is higher. YES they have a higher level of education. However, they have achieved their education simply as a tool, not because they truly have a thirst for knowledge. White collars sit on their couches on a Friday night sucking back beers and cheering their favourite sports team.

    YES, blue collar people have a larger percentage of the “lower end of the gene pool”. YES, they have a lower mean academic level. But they too enjoy also enjoy wine tasting, and travelling. They are restricted by their means to the level which they can pursue these desires. They are not baser, or more atavistic people. They are simply, on the lower end of the scale, less intelligent > less educated > lower paid. The lack of education leads to less/lack of comprehension of higher intellectual matters and lack of money leads to less ability for cultural pursuits.

    • Omar,

      I’m happy to see that in comparing white and blue collar, you decidedly raised the hand of white collar as the winner.

      It’s not a competition, I know, but the fact that you’ve been exposed to both and notice a difference, means that subjectivity and ‘cheering for the underdog’, hasn’t blinded you to the truth.

      Whether you posit a big difference between the two groups or not, is not as important. There ARE HUGE differences between blue and white collar and I’ve discussed them many many times.

      But before we move forward we need to RECALL HOW I’VE PREVIOUSLY DEFINED THE TWO COLLARS.

      White and blue collar are NOT ONLY CAREERS, BUT CULTURES. Yes, they are ways of life. White collar culture begins with a child raised having values of studying and learning NOT JUST to land a high paying job, but for the benefit of self-development in GENERAL.

      As I’ve said in many previous posts, continual development is the core philosophy behind being white collar.

      Learning varied courses activates parts of the brain not otherwise possible if you followed the ‘spoiled child’ route of only caring about what’s fun. Years of a structured, challenging education, sharpens high-level thinking; and this superior thinking can be applied to EVERY PART OF YOUR WAKING LIFE.

      When you form an opinion, you are not merely some local tattooed loudmouth who garners respect merely because he’s not afraid to go to jail if someone argues with him, but your opinion is meaningful because it’s coming from a well-trained mind.

      You are just flat out more insightful.

      Because of this hunger for intellect, it is a natural consequence of the white collar philosophy to learn about culture, fine food, spirits, clothing, etc.., Again, it’s all about higher and higher development.

      In contrast, most blue collars consider intellect, sophistication and culture geeky or lame. The terminal flaw of the gross majority of blue collar is the literal brainless worship of being tough or badass.

      So in summary, these are the differences between the two camps. They ARE HUGE DIFFERENCES and consequently result in enormous differences in how both will develop in life and what level of humanity each party belongs to.

  27. I skimmed through the rest of the comments beyond the first few so sorry if someone has already expressed the same sentiments but I just had to gleefully throw in my 2 cents!

    I think some of these firey responses were due to the original commenter’s use of the word “superior” to describe white collar vs blue collar.

    You can also say that a monkey is a superior climber to a fish and if that’s what society values so they pay more to the monkey, then both the monkey and the fish would have to agree that the monkey is definitely superior.

    However, if monkeys were ever required to swim…

    (To be fair to the white collar professionals, a lot of their work does require more discipline and education and hence they are paid more. The garbage collector has a job that nearly anyone can do with minimal training, and so it is valued less. That is until they all go on strike as has happened historically!)

  28. John, you are quite clearly an out of touch fool. of all the white collar people I have met in my life only a small majority have actually been worth talking to. Many are like you quite well and truly stupid for lack of a better word.

    You say they have or will have worse health, but of all the men I have met the blue collar men are infact more intouch with personal health and diet. Alot of white collar men seem to know alot about health and fitness but seem not to know how to apply it.

    My Father was a machinist for 50 years (with the same company) he left school at the age of 16 and worked his way up from machinist to manager of the plant. My Farther my not have the education you had but he taught me more about life than any university proffesor could have. He told me that you take men one at a time and do not judge by the group as you have basically done, I think it is time you revise the outlook you have.

    • Peter,

      It’s ironic that you’re saying words like “fool” and “stupid” when you, I assume a full grown man, still don’t know that “alot” is NOT A WORD. It is “a” (one word, now hit the spacebar) “lot” (second and separate word)

      White collar people statistically live longer and far better than blue collar. Consult the “American Journal of Public Health”, and you will quickly find that, “….blue-collar workers have more severe diseases than white-collar workers, and look forward to fewer years of healthy life.”

      Finally, you say your father taught you more about life than any professor (Oh god… And by the way, please notice that the word “professor” only has ONE “f”)
      It’s NOT a competition between your father and a university education. Yes, a father can teach you and an educator can at times feel like a parent. BUT YOUR FATHER IS YOUR FATHER, AND A PROFESSOR IS A PROFESSOR.

      You need parenting AND a high-level education BOTH.

      (These people’s ‘logic’ is really frustrating me)

      • Why are people emailing me thinking i am you. It is annoying! People please pay attention. I in no way agree with John.

      • Almost everyone on this comment thread is wrong.

        John, without blue collar workers, the world wouldn’t work.

        To everyone opposing John: the world would not work without white collar workers either.

        Both are absolutely necessary for an economy and a nation to function.

        What the world needs is BALANCE.

  29. John, chill out. You take men one at a time, you don’t judge by the group. Let’s all agree to disagree. Don’t get personnel with Pete saying he needs parenting, peace on Earth and all that jazz, you obviously irratated a sensetive nerve that’s all.

    • James,

      When I said “you” need parenting and teaching both, I’m using “you” in an impersonal sense.

      The word “you” in this case is being used like “one”, because saying “one” needs parenting and teaching, sounds a little stilted.

  30. The majority of Actors and Music artists have come from blue collar backgrounds, what does that say about blue collar uprings? I thought I would just inject this fact. Carry on gentleman.

  31. John can suck my ****, then he can **** his own face! I am the one and only now **** away I will.

  32. To john and others

    Ur a dumb asshole and anyone ealse that agrees with what u have sayed john is also a dumbass u think ur better than a blue collar people ur really not. U will be one shitting ur pants if world goes to shit and have to live with out power or running water it will be men like me that have to save ur ass and teach u stuff that wasnt taught in class room like huntin and fishing and building a cabin or just how to do physical labor. Ur comments r so rude and it sickens me. Id love to come face to face with u. U little half man peice of shit. Thanks mitch

  33. OMG JOHN! U R SO RUDE! I BET UR RICH!!

  34. Hello,

    I’m doing a research project on blue collar/light industrial contractors or non-employees. I would like to know if any of you would be willing to complete a questionnaire about this topic?

    If interested, please send me an email at Lisafromkansas@yahoo.com and put LIGHT INDUSTRIAL in the subject line.

    Your assistance would be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you,
    Lisa

  35. Wow…this is ridiculous. I am a HVAC technician so I guess I would be considered a blue collar worker. I am highly skilled at what I do. I make over $100,000 a year so being and I guarantee I make more than alot of white collar workers.

  36. Wow John, you certantly are generalizing a whole group of people unfairly. I’m not insulting anyone else’s profession, but you can’t compare being a HVAC technitian to being a janitor. That’s like comparing a receptionist to a CEO. As a HVAC tech., I have to deal heavily with temperature and pressure relations, electrical theory, and other applied sciences. There is a lot of intelligance that goes into this feild. The same goes with other skilled trades such as plumbing, electrical, auto tech., etc. Also, not all blue collar workers are rude or vulgar. My grandfather, who was an electrician, was one of the most polite men I have ever met. I also remember him specifically telling me that using profanity makes you seem unintelligent. Quite the opposite of how you have portrayed blue collar workers. My father, who was also a HVAC tech., was not like how you describe blue collar workers. A very intelligent man, he had a hard life growing up. Comming from a poor family who could not put him through college, he took the first full time job he could get out of high school; working constuction building houses. He then worked his way into the trades and eventually got into the heating and cooling buisness and ended up making well over $100,000 a year quite quickly. He didn’t spend all his time at the bar, he didn’t smoke, and he took care of his family. He wasnt covered in tattoos, didn’t get into fist fights, and wasn’t constantly being arrested. I really feel bad that you are so delusional that you honestly think white collar workers are superior to blue collar workers. It all depends on each person’s preference, and wearing a suit and not getting your hands dirty doesn’t appeal to me at all.

    Go ahead and critique my grammar and spelling, I really don’t care.

    • When someone makes sweeping statements about a group of people, they are OBVIOUSLY generalizations.

      Did he say “ALL”? No.

      It is up to the reader to understand that, and not get butt-hurt by inserting imaginary “ALL”s into the conversation.

  37. People are sending me emails thinking that Iam the John that wrote this piece. Please! make sure that you are emailing the correct John.

  38. I am J.O. not John. Stop emailing me people with nasty emails. Again! Iam not John, I’m J.O.

  39. In my experience of being a blue collar, I realized a few things. People that thrive to be white collar, are very good at sucking up. They have fake conversations with one another about their ‘happy’ lives and assume the other is actually listening but rather is just waiting for their turn to speak.

    They are also in love with money. And will break any moral code if it means they can ‘up’ their paycheck. Just so they can buy more material items.

    I’ve decided I do not want a white collar job just so I can avoid snobs. What’s money, really? As soon as you buy the one thing that you’ve been waiting for, you’re never content.
    There’s always more you need.
    It’s only after you’ve lost everything that you’re free to do anything.

    I wonder if white collars actually think they are the only ones capable of doing their job…. If you have internet access, you can learn anything without paying thousands to go to school.

    So what it comes to is this:

    There’s a club. A club where if you want to join, you need to be in debt to them. Just like a credit card, or paying for college.

    White collar jobs are just an illusion of being superior.
    Blue collars are the people you depend on.
    We cook your meals.
    We collect your trash.
    We connect your calls.
    We watch you while you sleep.
    Do not make us angry.

  40. Hey all fellow blue collar workers, let’s all quit our jobs and see how long people like John, John Titor, and gmwilliams last.

  41. I really learnt alot from John’s comments but one thing John failed to realize is both are dependant on each others….Thumbs up to you John, you expand my reasoning

  42. Humble people don’t see themselves as “superior” to others, even if they are hyper-educated. A person’s character is not judged on booksmarts or physical skill set, but rather emotional intelligence, how one treats others and the positive differences they make in their community and the world. When you die people don’t care how educated or “intelligent” or hard working you were. If you’re a snooty primadona who treats those with “lesser value” with grave disrespect, then your funeral will be a welcome ridance.

    If you’re educated and intelligent enough to be compassionate, you will find away to make a positive difference. You will then be remembered in a favorable light.

    Much conflict in our world is derived from the lack of appreciation for cultural and socio-economic differences. So much energy has been skewed toward the importance and value of white collar jobs, and the culture it breeds, that the world is becoming full of highly educated people who can’t find jobs, unwilling to take blue collar jobs in order to pay bills. How intelligent is that? Educated and “intelligent,” but bankruptand unemployed or humble, reliable and employed with a great lifestyle? You choose.

    What about all the “white collars” with swimming pools and lawns in the desert who have caused the greatest drought this country has ever seen? They can’t stop consuming so there is no end in sight. How intelligent is that?

    All of you on both sides who are clingng to your self importance and a stance that you are better than the others are destined to fall on your face.

    Wake up and be willing to find value and appreciation for the varying classes that make all things possible. If you like a clean house withrunning water and flush toilets, be thankful for those who made it possible. If you’re a water technician and provide the water to make it all possible, be thankful there is funding to do the job. We are all microscopic parts to a giant machine. When one of those tiny parts stops working, the machine will mal-function. Look at tthe chaos around the world.

    Some of us are very educated and left the facade & bs wrapped around the urban white collar perception of success for a kinder lifestyle in a beautiful place where everyone has value. My job bridges blue and white collars. On a daily basis I particpate on both sides of the fence. And believe me there is a fence.

    Let’s break down the fence!

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