Wage Slavery, to be precise.
In Wage Slavery, due to conditions inflicted on the market through any means, a certain segment of the society have to work hand to mouth with little to none prospect of a better future. Almost always, under deplorable conditions for long hours without acceptable protections in regard to workplace standards or labor rights.
Wage Slavery was actually the means through which former slave owners have re-instituted slavery after emancipation in various countries or geographic locations. First, was Brazil – former slave owners collectively effected a labor market in which they could effectively make former slaves work for near-slave conditions. This format was much better, since now former slave owners who were the new ’employers’ not only did not have to deal with repressing and controlling slaves, but also they could discard ‘useless’ workers without any legal or ethical worries – contrary to slaves.
Criminalization of black life after Civil War in US and creating the prison system which interned legions of blacks and made them work for near slave conditions was another method. That came back with Reagan and his ‘war on drugs’, transforming into the Prison Industry complex which is basically effecting slavery for everyone, this time.
The above forms of wage slavery or near slavery are blatant and easily noticeable ones.
Walmart’s kind of Wage slavery is effected through ‘free market’ conditions which a lot of people who do not have enough knowledge/info would have difficulty in analyzing and criticizing:
“If you don’t like it, find another job”
“If you don’t like it, go to college”
“You don’t have to if you want to”
Except, you do:
Student loan debts nearing $100,000 with a high probability of going unemployed after graduation on one side and having to work to survive next month especially with a family or dependents you have to take care of, on the other side.
So, people end up working for Walmart or similar employers for slave wages, or some other employers who pay a little higher than slave wages, with little to no prospect of getting out. The slave-wage employers make insane profits, are able to do business much cheaper due to floor-bottom labor costs, which pushes their competitors to bankruptcy, which reduces employment opportunities, which in turn forces people into the slave wage system. A profitable self-reinforcing spiral to the bottom.
That’s Wage Slavery.
And its a major problem in Capitalist systems.