Ross Eisenbrey

  • Aired:  02/28/12
  •  | Views: 2,845

Ross Eisenbrey believes that everyone -- from interns to college athletes --should be paid for working for someone else's financial benefit. (6:04)

>> STEPHEN: WELCOME BACK,

EVERYBODY.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

MY GUEST TONIGHT IS A LAWYER

FIGHTING AGAINST UNPAID

INTERNSHIPS.

BUT IF ANY OF MY INTERNS ASK

HE'S THE PRESIDENT OF

UZBEKISTAN.

PLEASE WELCOME ROSS EISENBREY.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR COMING ON.

THRILLED TO BE HERE SIR, GIVE

THE PEOPLE YOUR CV.

YOU ARE THE VICE PRESIDENT OF

ECONOMIC POLICY INSTITUTE, A

LAWYER, FORMER COMMISSIONER OF

U.S. OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND

HEALTH REVIEW COMMISSION.

YOU HAVE WRITTEN A 1,000 WORD

ARTICLE THAT SAYS INTERNS ARE A

SCOURGE ON THE LABOR MARKET.

WHAT DO YOU HAVE AGAINST

INTERNS, SIR?

>> THAT IS NOT WHAT I SAID.

>> STEPHEN: YOU SAID THEY ARE

A SCOURGE.

INTERNS ARE WONDERFUL.

UNPAID INTERNSHIPS WHERE THEY

WORK FOR NOTHING THAT IS A VERY

BAD THING.

>> STEPHEN: SHHHH.

[ LAUGHTER ]

I HAVE AN INTERN HERE, JAY.

JAY, THE INTERN.

HE HAS BEEN HERE FOR SIX AND A

HALF YEARS.

[ LAUGHTER ]

THINK OF ALL THE COLLEGE CREDITS

HE IS RACKING UP.

HE IS HALFWAY TO HIS Ph.D.

>> HE PROBABLY HAS TO PAY FOR

THOSE CREDITS SO HE IS GETTING A

DOUBLY BAD DEAL.

HE IS NOT GETTING PAID FOR HIS

WORK AND PAGE FOR AN ACADEMIC

EXPERIENCE HE IS NOT GETTING

BECAUSE HE IS NOT IN CLASS.

HE IS NOT IN COLLEGE.

>> STEPHEN: HE IS IN THE

SCHOOL OF LIFE.

[ LAUGHTER ]

HE IS LEARNING THAT SOMETIMES

YOU CAN BE TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF.

[ LAUGHTER ]

>> THAT'S TRUE.

>> Stephen: BEAL AGREE.

>> THAT'S RIGHT HE'S BEEN TAKEN

ADVANTAGE OF.

>> STEPHEN: WHAT SHOULD WE DO?

WE SHOULD BE PAYING THE INTERNS?

>> ANYONE WHO WORKS FOR SOMEONE

ELSE FOR THEIR FINANCIAL BENEFIT

SHOULD BE PAID FOR THEIR WORK.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

AS A MATTER OF FACT -- IT'S

AGAINST THE LAW.

>> STEPHEN: COLLEGE ATHLETES

SHOULD BE PAID.

>> YEAH, PROBABLY.

>> Stephen: REALLY?

>> YEAH, THEY --

>> STEPHEN: COLLEGE ATHLETES

SHOULD BE PAID.

>> THEY TAKE TREMENDOUS RISKS.

THEY GET HURT.

>> STEPHEN: EVERYONE IN THE

OLYMPICS SHOULD BE PAID.

>> WELL, NO.

ARE THEY --

>> STEPHEN: PEOPLE ARE

PROFITING, ABSOLUTELY PEOPLE ARE

PROFITING OFF THE OLYMPICS.

I'M JUST SAYING BEING MY INTERN

IS LIKE BEING IN THE OLYMPICS IN

THAT I MAKE YOU RUN EVERYWHERE

YOU GO.

>> I BELIEVE THEY TRAIN VERY

HARD FOR THIS.

>> STEPHEN: YOU ARE LIKE THE

ABRAHAM LINCOLN OF INTERNS YOU

WANT TO LET MY PEOPLE GO.

>> THINK HOW MUCH BETTER THEIR

EXPERIENCE WOULD BE IF YOU PAID

THEM.

>> STEPHEN: WHAT ABOUT THE

LOVE OF THE GAME.

MAYBE THERE ARE COLLEGE STUDENTS

WHO JUST REALLY WANT TO GET ME

COFFEE.

>> THERE PROBABLY ARE BUT YOU

KNOW WHEN PEOPLE WORK FOR FREE,

EMPLOYERS GET THE IDEA THAT THEY

DON'T HAVE TO PAY FOR LABOR.

YOU KNOW, PEOPLE LOOK AT YOU AND!3BSAY S

WIT, CAN I GET AWAY WITH IT.

I WON'T PAY ALL THE ENTRY LEVEL

PEOPLE WHO COME TO WORK FOR ME.

>> STEPHEN: HOW IS IT BAD FOR

THE ECONOMY.

THE GUY NOT PAYING ANYBODY IS

MAKING A PRFT.

>> YES, MAKING BIGGER AND BIGGER

PROFITS AND MORE AND MORE

INEQUALITY NOW THAT WE'VE EVER

HAD OUR EXPERIENCE.

IF THE INTERNS FEEL LIKE THEY

ARE BEING TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF WHY

DON'T THEY GET INTERNS OF THEIR

OWN.

>> THERE ARE INTERNS WHO ARE

UNPAID WHO ARE COORDINATING

OTHER INTERNS.

THERE'S A BIG LAWSUIT OVER THAT

INVOLVING HARPAR'S BAAZAR.

>> STEPHEN: HAVE YOU EVER HAD

INTERN?

>> WE'VE HAD INTERNS.

>> STEPHEN: DID YOUv: PAY THEM?

>> WE DID PAY THEM.

>> STEPHEN: ARE THEY ALWAYS

PAID?

>> YES.

>> WE HAVE A PROGRAM WHERE WE

HAVE FOUNDATION MONEY TO SUPPORT

INTERNSHIPS AT VARIOUS SMALL

THINK TANKS AROUND THE COUNTRY.

>> STEPHEN: WHAT IF WE HAD THE

INTERNS PAY INTO A LOTTERY.

[ LAUGHTER ]

AND ONE OF THEM WON THE LOTTERY.

WE PUT LIKE A DOLLAR IN LIKE A

PILLOW CASE EVERY WEEK AND THEN

EVERY WEEK I WOULD PULL OUT A

DOLOR AND WRITE YOUR NAME ON IT

AND SAY IT'S JAY, IT'S DAVE.

WHATEVER.

THEY WERE PAYING EACH OTHER.

>> THAT WOULD VIOLATE THE LAW

TOO.

>> STEPHEN: WHAT IS WITH THE

LAW OF PAYING PEOPLE.

I KNOW TO PAY PEOPLE.

WE DON'T NEED ANY LAWS THAT

EVERYBODY ALREADY OBEYS NL YOU

ARE LEARNING FROM YOUR STATE

REPRESENTATIVES.

I SEE THAT.

NO, REALLY IT'S A SERIOUS

PROBLEM THERE ARE NOW -- THE

INTERNSHIP THING HAS GOTTEN SO

OUT OF CONTROL THE NOTION THAT

YOU DON'T HAVE TO PAY PEOPLE WHO

WORK FOR YOU.

THERE ARE 42-YEAR-OLD

ACCOUNTANTS WORKING FOR FOX

SEARCHLIGHT FILMS WHO ARE NOT

PAID.

>> STEPHEN: 42-YEAR-OLD

COLLEGE STUDENTS?

>> AN EMPLOYER CAN CALL YOU AN

INTERN AND NOT PAY YOU.

>> STEPHEN: WE HAD THAT IN THE

SOUTH 150 YEARS AGO, A COTTON

INTERNSHIP.

WE HAVE INTERN HERE'S.

DAVE IS ONE OF OUR INTERNS THIS

SEMESTER.

HE IS MY HOST INTERN.

HE IS TRYING TO BREAK INTO THE

CAREER OF BEING ME.

[ LAUGHTER ]

WE LET THEM STAY INVOLVED IN THE

SHOW.

WE GIVE THEM EXPERIENCE.

DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS.

>> DO YOU HAVE ANY INTERNSHIPS?

>> STEPHEN: ARE YOU

INTERESTED.

WE DO.

>> ARE THEY PAID?

THEY ARE BUT YOU HAVE TO KNOW

SOMETHING ABOUT COMIB AS PUBLIC

POLICY.

[ LAUGHTER ]

-- SOMETHING ABOUT ECONOMICS AND

PUBLIC POLICY.

[ LAUGHTER ]

>> STEPHEN: THANK YOU SO MUCH

FOR JOINING

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