Green Jobs

How Much Does Your Job Suck?


Must be able to meet project deadlines in a fast-paced environment.

What are the best and worst jobs in these here United States? The Wall Street Journal has a list of 200 careers, including quite a few head-scratchers (and no, "head scratcher" is not one of the jobs listed). Here's the methodology:, a career website, ranked 200 jobs from best to worst based on five criteria: physical demands, work environment, income, stress, and hiring outlook. To compile its list, the firm primarily used data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and other government agencies. From a software engineer to a lumberjack, see the complete list, and search for your job.

As that paragraph suggests, "software engineer" is Number One, and "lumberjack" is number 200.

I'm not sure about any list of jobs that doesn't include "doctor," "lawyer," "Indian" or "chief." "Physician (General Practice)" does come in at 39 and "Attorney" ranks 87th. Elected office also gets short shrift, with nothing listed for "politician," "senator" "mayor," "representative" or "city council member."

"Mounty" is not listed either.

The wonderful thing about lists like these is the veneer of objectivity they give to subjective data. While I'm happy for the nation's dental hygienists that they apparently have the fourth-best job in the country, I can't imagine what amount of physical ease or lack of workplace stress could compel me to stick my fingers into other people's pieholes on a regular basis. (Maybe the actual mouth work is done by machines these days. I haven't been to the dentist in a while.) 

 The list also contains bad news for our ever-growing population of liberal arts majors. "Poet," "composer," "novelist," "pundit," "columnist," and even "performance artist" don't show up, and in fact there's nothing listed for "performer" of any kind. Nor is there anything for "motion picture director," though in yet another victory for death, "funeral director" comes in at 90. (Unspecified "Artist" comes in at 101.) 

And if you want to understand why old media employees are feeling so sorry for themselves, note that "Reporter (Newspaper)" comes in at number 196, four spaces from the bottom, 161 slots below "Parole Officer" and 56 slots below "Typist" – a job I didn't even know still existed. (And yes, I am using scare quotes because I suspect most of these people don't do any actual work.) 

In fact, the list is strangely unreflective of the dynamic and shifting nature of employment in this century. Where are the "tech evangelists," "social media coordinators" and "digital imaging technicians" – jobs that seem to be so in-demand on Craigslist but apparently have escaped the notice of the BLS?  

Courtesy of DJ Dash Riprock

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  1. #61, or at least the closet equivalent job to what I do.

    1. I was in printing for most of my career and I can’t find it there. Most other things I’ve done aren’t there either, except truck driver and cashier. I found no reference to chef, cook or restaurant either.

      1. Odd, they had dishwasher and waiter/ess (surprisingly, in that order). It’s not like cook / chef is such an arcane profession.

    2. why arent axe murderer & jihadist on the list? >now there’s gonna be hell to pay fosho

      1. Axe murderer should rank high in job satisfaction. Being a Jihadist would be the bomb! Though the retirement benefits for both ain’t so hot.

        1. the retirement benefits for both ain’t so hot.

          I know some Christians who would beg to differ.

    3. I’m at 197, but moving to 16 in a week or so.

  2. Blocked by my employer’s firewall.

    1. They don’t want you to find out how far down the list your job is.

  3. Mounty? As in “one who mounts”? Is that some sexual thing?

    1. The evidence is not conclusive, but they do not appear to want to mount a lumberjack.

    2. That would be a Mounter, ProL. A mounty is one who gets mounted, which is why it’s not at the top of the list.

      1. A mounty is one who gets mounted, which is why it’s not at the top of the list.

        Shouldn’t it at least be at the bottom of the list?

      2. What about erection supervisor?

  4. As that paragraph suggests, “software engineer” is Number One, and “lumberjack” is number 200.

    I’m Number One! I’m Number One! I’m Number One!

    1. But where’s the reality show about these, so called, “software engineers”?
      All the manly reality shows are about the shittiest jobs in the universe.

  5. but apparently have escaped the notice of the BLS?


    1. Well, I get to be 9 at least.

      1. Funny how it stuck my reply to Joe M up here…

  6. Fuck yes! I’ve got the best job, nanny nanny boo boo.

    1. While I technically do too, the crunch we’re in right now certainly doesn’t make it seem like it. When I’m still at work until 1AM doing a deploy, I sort of envy people who get to go home at 5PM.

      1. There’s enough flexibility and pay where it’s hard to complain, even while burning the midnight oil. I hate my job and the life that it sucks from me. But I still do it because I can’t find a line of work that doesn’t bitch too loudly when I work from home, work unusual hours, and still get paid well.

        1. I don’t get to work from home, unless of course I’m doing a remote deploy at 10PM or something, or checking the status of something running over the weekend.

          I’m not really complaining. Considering that I just threw a roll of towels at a fellow dev and knocked over his monitor while making fun of the CTO, we get some perks.

          1. agreed with the above.. throwing consulting in the mix even makes the time suck worse…and dont even get me started on all the calls that are at wierd hours because of offshoring.

            still, WAAAAAY better than digging ditches

    2. So does half the commentariat.

    3. Present.

  7. So if being retired is this much better than being a software engineer (programmer) it must really, really suck to be a lumberjack.

  8. So what about biomedical research involving a healthy dose of biophysics?

    Cross between 25 and 27? Not terrible..

  9. I’m a lumberjack and I’m okay
    I sleep all night and I work all day
    He’s a lumberjack and he’s okay
    He sleeps all night and he works all day

    / G – CE7 Am7 / D D7 GC G / :

    I cut down trees, I eat my lunch
    I go to the lavat’ry
    On Wednesdays I go shopping
    And have buttered scones for tea
    He cuts down trees…
    He’s a lumberjack…

    / G – C Am7 / D D7 G – / G – C A7 / D7 – GC G /

    I cut down trees, I skip and jump
    I like to press wild flow’rs
    I put on women’s clothing
    And hang around in bars
    He cuts down trees…
    He’s a lumberjack…

    I cut down trees, I wear high heels
    Suspendies and a bra
    I wish I’d been a girlie
    Just like my dear papa
    He cuts down trees…
    He’s a lumberjack…

    WAHH! And I thought you were so RUGGED!

  10. The list also contains bad news for our ever-growing population of liberal arts majors. “Poet,” “composer,” “novelist,” “pundit,” “columnist,” and even “performance artist” don’t show up, and in fact there’s nothing listed for “performer” of any kind. Nor is there anything for “motion picture director,” though in yet another victory for death, “funeral director” comes in at 90. (Unspecified “Artist” comes in at 101.)

    Yes, because the only purpose of education is job skills training for all the little cogs of the industrial complex.

    1. Heh, you know, your sarcasm has resonated with me. I’ve enjoyed liberal arts classes (though science is my thing), but before have wondered why people would go into fields with seemingly few JERBS. But then I realized that the entire point of your life is not to live according to someone else’s plan, and that it’s really not fair to mock others’ choices of major (though I think it becomes fair when they complain about lack of employment).

      I am a bit curious though, as to why so many libertarians would mock non-STEM fields (as I used to- alas, I don’t understand myself). After all, libertarian philosophy itself is a non-STEM field.

      1. why so many libertarians would mock non-STEM fields

        Hunt through the archives for one of the autism threads and therein you will find your answer.

        1. Hm, I did have a libertarian corporate finance professor who told me, “libertarians are engineers, autistic, or both.”

          1. That’s a little extreme, we seem to have a pretty good spread of careers on the board.

          2. When asked why I have so few female students in the IT courses that I teach, I usually respond with “autism is primarily a male disease”. [rimshot]

            The female students always laugh the most.

            1. In IT? Pre-ordered response for social interactions? One that you use routinely–maybe even say repetitively?

              Have you had an Asperberger’s check up?

      2. those jobs are mocked BECAUSE of the whining of the degree holders. The hipsters want degrees that sound fanciful, plus they believe themselves entitled to cushy salaries, to live in the city of their dreams, for their first home to have all the latest upgrades, and to be able to act much as they did in college.

        My degree was in Communication; made a good living and have gotten to do a lot of way cool stuff. But I started on the bottom run and worked up; back in the day, there was no expectation of one’s first office being in the C-suite. And frankly, the C-suite was a bigger hassle than it was worth.

        1. Yeah, the mockage is for people who think they are entitled to a high paying job just because they obtained an art degree or some such thing in college.

          1. Yeah, the mockage is for people who think they are entitled to a high paying job just because they obtained an art degree or some such thing in college.

            My friend, who’s on the hook for 70 grand for a masters in sociology and who now works as an elementary school teacher, simply cannot grasp how I made twice as much money as she did, without the benefit of a masters in sociology. If I’d told her that anyone with half a brain can teach 3rd-graders the three ‘R’s, she likely wouldn’t have wanted to be my friend anymore.

            1. The sad part is, she’s probably overpaid.

        2. And frankly, the C-suite was a bigger hassle than it was worth.

          That’s an interesting point. As I’ve progressed in my (ecclectic) career, I have paid very close attention to the balance between higher pay/more power and less leisure time. I’m one of those people that thrives on down time, not work time, so I decided a more technical field was the best – I can command a salary that is very comfortable without having to go into the shithole known as management (I’m differentiating between project management and “boss”-type management here).

          1. Yeah. Of course, I don’t think it’s clear that the degree-holders we’re making fun of actually do want in to the C-suite. They want a “big think” job, yes. But actual responsibilities? (That suck?) Not so much, I don’t think.

            1. A “professional student” and Canadian acquaintance of mine posted this on her Facebook the other day. I think it sums up nicely the liberal arts folks and what they’re looking for (basically, just what wareagle said)

              i know a lot of uber fantastic people currently un- and underemployed. some of them even know how to effectively deploy the umlaut. i feel like there’s something better we could be doing with ourselves, skills, talents and passions than looking for the next place to sell our souls. and that we should be doing it together. hrm.

              (BTW, I am always curious about WTF this chick does for scratch. She goes to school full time for a graduate degree in some kind of literature, does not work, has a kid, takes vacations abroad and mini-trips on weekends, and occasionally bitches about her lowly financial situation. It’s just so confusing, but I don’t know her well enough to just ask. And no, there’s no husband or live-in boyfriend or any significant other that can supplement.)

              1. Maybe it’s the Canadian part that has something to do with it? I hear they have a bit more socialist bent on things, I wonder if they have some kind of programs for students. Too lazy to look it up.

                1. Also, seems likely that going to school is her job–in the sense that she’s probably getting paid to be there rather than vice versa (and acting as a TA or whatever). Depends on where in Canada of course, but when I lived there it was so cheap to live that you could do a lot of stuff like that. Of course, I didn’t have a kid…

              2. Yes, this pretty much epitomizes what I can’t stand about my fellow non-STEM peeps (although I would argue there is a world of difference between linguistics [what I did] and, say, women’s studies…). I know how to effectively deploy the umlaut (always assuming that by “umlaut” she actually means the “diaeresis,” i.e., the diacritical mark and not the phonological change), but I also went and got a real job at a company that makes a product people pay money for. Which is to say, in their parlance, I “sold my soul.” Of course, in my parlance, I used myself, my skills, and my talents to make some fucking money.

                These people just think working is dirty, outside a few acceptable professions. And since those tend not to pay very well, blah blah you know the rest. I’ve had to put my blog on hiatus for a bit because of personal issues, but the next project I wanted to work on was a survey of literature about work and how (I suspect) the MFA-ization of contemporary lit fic means no one who’s writing “important” books now is able to write about work outside these few areas, and how barren and insular this is.

              3. Maybe she’s a whore?

              4. Most of my fellow grad students when I was in grad school took in tens of thousands of dollars of student loans as income. Even those who taught and received a stipend.

                At least one friend from grad school has nearly $200k in student loans to pay for after he graduates with his PhD in English. How he’s gonna pay them off and live even remotely decently, I don’t know.

      3. philosophy itself is a non-STEM field.

        Newton and Leibnitz wonder what the fuck you are talking about.

        As does robc.

        1. Rand is also on board (Hint: what did Ragnar, Francisco and John major in?)

  11. That list is complete bullshit. How can Ass Kicker rank below Name Taker? I’ve had both jobs and the former is clearly more satisfying.

  12. The best job in the world – mine – isn’t even on the list.

    1. Zoo animal masturbater?

      1. Naa. Retired.

        1. Yep. If not buying health insurance is participating in commerce, being retired is a job.

          1. And if buying health insurance?

      2. I make animal have liquid explosion!

        1. I just nearly coughed up a piece of sushi, both out of revulsion and laughter.

      3. I’d forgotten all about that one. Jerking off horses for living would have to rank somewhere near the bottom. Not having an actual handful of horse cock (they use fake vaginas) wouldn’t really make it any better, because after all, you’re still jerking off a horse.

      4. This isn’t safe for work, but I figured while we’re on the topic of jerking off animals . . .

  13. #45 huh? This thing is rigged.

    Also, why isn’t HRM #1? Those are the bozos that figure out how to hire (without being sued) and fire (without being sued). And the job security would be fantastic: Can you be made to fire yourself?

      1. High Rolling Muscovite?

        /I suck at this

      2. Human Resource Manager, you doofus!

        Quothe Mel Brooks: “It’s good the be the king!”

        As Mugabe can attest, the job title of “Despot”, not so much.

        1. Human resources? I thought that was just a fictional construct.

          1. Well, it’s true in the sense that Darby O’Gill proved leprechauns do exist.

            Though it’s true I’ve never seen one up close and in person.

          2. yup…it’s a theoretical construct dating back several decades, seen as a kinder, gentler means of management over the traditional system is cogs in the machine. Theoretically, treating human capital as a resource rather than as people with specific skills for specific tasks makes folks happppy, happppy, happpy.

            1. HR has one purpose–avoidance of litigation/litigation defense. All that other crap is crap.

              1. When I own my own corporation, the department that oversees hiring, firing, pay, and benefits will be known as ‘Personnel’.

        2. Mugabe had a good run. He and his party have gotten away with looting an entire nation to enrich themselves for more than 30 years, and he is probably going to die peacefully in his bed. Talk about your ideal state of affairs for a despot.

          1. So is Mugabe TEAM RED or TEAM BLUE?

            1. ,i>So is Mugabe TEAM RED or TEAM BLUE?

              Probably, yeah.

              1. The ONE time I don’t click preview before submit. *shame*

          2. Mugabe only went full retard in the past 10 years or so. Prior to that, Zimbabwe was seen as one of the better post-colonial African countries.

            So much for that.

          3. Wait, Ozzie Guillen is Randian?

    1. Definitely, I’m at #72 myself.

  14. Let me guess – “crack whore” was at the bottom of the list.

    1. According to Norm MacDonald, the worst job is actually Assistant Crack Whore.

      1. Ah, I must have stolen the joke, then. Maybe Groovus was right – maybe I am Dane Cook.

        Or Carlos Mencia.

        1. Oh, great. Beaten by an hour by BakedPenguin.

  15. I’m disappointed in you Timothy Cavanaugh, and other Reasoniods!

    No sex worker, hooker or escort jokes? (And no, Saccharin Man Animalia inflangrante does not qualify.)

    Why, when Postrel was running the place…(stay thirsty my friends).

      1. Thank you, Fried Aquatic Avian, for reaffirming my faith in the Reason-verse.

        1. Doc – wherever there’s a cheap, easy joke to be made… I’ll be there.

          1. You’re really Dane Cook?

            1. Sadly, no. I actually have a very, very small amount of talent.

              1. So you’re really Dane Cook?

  16. I started at #58, have been doing #1 for the last 15 years, and am moving to “Sir Job not appearing on this list”.

    1. Grew up/started as #199 and have been in #1 for the past year. Who says there is no upward mobility in the US?

      1. Have a friend who followed that same path.

        Although I guess he is more network security than software engineer currently.

  17. I don’t know about you but the first thing that pops into my mind when I think about shitty jobs is of course Musical Instrument Repairer.

    1. ?

      That sounds like a lot of fun to me, unless you are the Musical Instrument Repairer for The Who.

      1. “?” ?

        Yes, it does – my point exactly. One has to wonder why it was #171 (and even more, who thought of even putting that job anywhere on the list.

    2. My son did this for a while…he seemed to think it was the coolest of his shitty jobs.

  18. Really WSJ? 15 per page?

    1. The whole point is to generate bogus page hits to entice advertisers.

  19. What’s a “tech evangelist”? Is that where someone goes around preaching the Gospel of Steve Jobs and telling people they cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven but through iPad 3?

    1. What’s a “tech evangelist”? Is that where someone goes around preaching the Gospel of Steve Jobs and telling people they cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven but through iPad 3?

      You’ve never been to Seattle?

  20. Aerospace Engineer is #60? That should be much lower. I’m thinking Somewhere between “bullet proof cup tester” and “Jock Itch Powder Quality Control Inspector.

    And why the fuck is “Human Resources Manager” 3rd? Those are some of the most useless people on the planet.

    1. Boeing has an engineer’s union. I dont know if that says something about Boeing or Aerospace Engineering or both.

      1. IIRC, that’s only true of their commercial airplane division, and even then only true of the engineers in Washington state. That’s why they were trying to move the 787 line to Greenville, SC (a right to work state), until the NLRB stepped in and stopped them.

        I think it says more about the whininess of their employees and the shitty pro-union policies of WA than anything else.

    2. They are number three because they’ve got a job where they are paid well for being useless*. 😉

      *The HR person at my new job excepted, of course.

    3. Human Resources Managers are the Power Behind the Throne, guy. If an executive goes to his HRM to ask if he can do something employment-related, and the HRM doesn’t want him to do it, the HRM can interpret the rules so that result doesn’t happen. Conversely, the Exec. gets covered if he does something controversial. “Hey, HR said we had to do it this way. Blame them, not me.”

  21. I was watching some prison show on NatGeo last week, I forget what prison they were featuring. Anyway, one of the inmates was suspected of having swallowed some drug-filled balloons. So they put the guy on “defecation watch,” which meant he was put into a cell that contained a bunk and a non-flushing toilet and which had a see-thru door. A guard was posted 24/7 outside the cell until the guy shat, at which time they donned latex gloves and took apart the guy’s shit.

    So not only does this poor sap get to be a prison guard, but now he gets to be a prison guard that digs through other men’s shit.

    1. True. Pathologists probably get paid much more for the same type of work.

      1. True. Pathologists probably get paid much more for the same type of work.

        True, but I suspect there’s a little bit more to a pathologist’s job description than breaking apart a prisoner’s turds then beating him like a rented mule when drugs are found.

        Plus, I’ve heard the training is a little longer.

        1. Sans the beatings and patient face time (excepting corpses), with way more ‘scope jockeying, and breaking apart viscerae, it’s not entirely dissimilar.

    2. If I were a prisoner, I’d spread rumors that I had swallowed a drug-filled balloon so I could watch a guard have to pick through my shit every day. Maybe I have a problem…

      1. If I were a prisoner, I’d spread rumors that I had swallowed a drug-filled balloon so I could watch a guard have to pick through my shit every day. Maybe I have a problem…

        That works on two levels: first, you get to watch your overseers pick through your shit. Also, after the-boy-who-cried-wolf phenomenon had set fully in, you could become a bona fide drug mule, since they wouldn’t bother searching you anymore.

  22. Only 200 jobs? Hasn’t Mike Rowe alone done about half that many in the last decade?

  23. #10. Although right now, wading through a big pile of linear programming exams, it looks more like #100000.

    1. I might have taken one of OR classes in grad school. #2.

  24. How about ‘Community Organizer’? I understand that can lead to much bigger and better jobs…

    1. Not anymore. The last guy ruined it for everybody.

  25. How about the guy who holds the SLOW DOWN sign at road construction?

    1. I saw a guy get fired from that. WHile I was stuck in traffic.

      He had a sign with SLOW and STOP sides. But he kept turning it around and leaving his lane to wave it at cars in the other lane which he thought were going too fast.
      The foreman told him twice and then fired him before he got somebody killed.

  26. I think the guy who drives the Safety Car at F1 races has a good gig.

  27. Best is #88 with Vending Machine Repairer.

    Never woulda thunk it. “Buyer” at #149 is also highly amusing. Elem. teach is 92 and HS is 137. I teach both and also MS.

    But then again I teach in S Korea and enjoy a fucking fabulous lifestyle that must be unheard of among Stateside classroom despots.

  28. I’m a “Sr. Business Analyst” which means – at least here – that I do computer programming, EDI setup, some server and database management, along with a very flexible schedule. It also means brief moments of high stress filled with mostly boredom.

    It’s a living.

  29. Because of the way that they do these surveys, jobs that are intrinsically appealing to many people always score low, because that’s one thing they can’t measure.

    By the Indifference Principle, all these things should level out. Interesting (to most people) jobs get paid less because they are interesting to so many people.

    Math-heavy jobs are great simply because so many people know that they don’t like math. If you enjoy math, actuary is a great job, because you get a great work environment and money to make up for the fact that so many other people don’t like math.

  30. Where the hell did they come up with the list of jobs?

    They list Astronomer as a Job, exactly how many Astronomers are there in the world? 1000, maybe 1500? Furthermore all professional Astronomers are also Professional Physicists which is also listed as a seperate profession but between the two of them you have less than 5000 practitioners globally. Why bother seperating them out into different fields? On the flip side jobs like Chef, Quality Assurance (Analyst/Engineer), Project Manager, Database Administrator/Engineer (and if Software Engineer is #1 this job has to be #0 because it equals Software Engineer in every category and generally exceeds it in pay and hiring prospects), Network Administrator/Engineer with tens of thousands of professionals in those fields in the US alone are omitted.

    Hell if you are going to list Astronomer as a distinct field where is professional Baseball Player? The 40 man rosters of the 30 Pro Baseball teams would be 1200 players alone, throw in the other couple thousand minor leaguers and they might just outnumber all Physicists (Astronomers and others) combined.

    1. There are far more than 5,000 professional physicists in the U.S.

      My guess is that there are probably 15,000 – 20,000 in industry alone. Not to mention the guys working for the government or in academia.

      1. Looks like we are both wrong…..nomers.htm

        According to the BLS as of 2010 there are ~20,000 combined Physicists (including Astronomers) in the US.

        Still the point Stands a career field comprising a mere 20,000 jobs is split into 2 sub fields while fields with hundreds of thousands of professionals are left out entirely.

    2. They have Travel Agent. I don’t even think there are those anymore. My office has a woman who sends us to a website to arrange our travel. She’s called the ‘Travel Coordinator’ – she is also the ‘Party Coordinator’ and ‘Assistant Crack Whore’ for all I know. Do people still call up Travel Agents to buy airline tickets and book hotels?

      1. Yes.

        My new job is with a company that puts together vacation tour packages, and about 33% of our business comes from travel agents.

      2. We stiil use honest-to-god travel agents. I send an email to some woman telling her when and where, and if I need a car when I arrive. I get back a confirmation of bookings, no muss no fuss.

        Of course, we send people all over the world, sometimes at the drop of a hat.

  31. I thought that software engineers couldn’t get jobs because of all the H1-B people.

    Wouldn’t that wreck the “hiring outlook” part of the test?

    1. If there is a software engineer who can’t get a job out there right now then one of two things is happening.

      1) He REALLY sucks at his job and word has gotten out enough that no one will hire him
      2) He lives in the IT equivalent of the Sahara (Small to mid sized cities with no real IT Industry and only a handful of companies large enough to have their own IT staff) and is unwilling to relocate

      Without one of both of those 2 factors however employment for Software professionals is all but guaranteed right now because H1B’s or not there is a shortage of them.

      Now the 2 things that the H1B program does do (one neutral the other bad) is to …

      1) mitigate the shortage of trained IT workers and keep IT salaries from inflating too much (Neutral)

      2) Eliminate the incentive for companies to hire partially trained employees and train them on the job (bad)

      1. Or, he has a long period of non-software engineering in his resume.

        Here in Boston there are quite a number of .NET developers looking for work, and a bunch of companies looking for .NET guys. But, the employers only wanted to talk to guys that were currently employed.

        It’s a very weird job market…

        1. My company doesn’t do much .NET, but we’re hiring about 400 new people this year, so probably 200-250 more software engineers. Probably 50-60% of those jobs will end up being H1-B’s.

          Of course we’re metrowest so who wants that?

        2. Well I just moved to the Boston Area working for an Indian company who is a vendor to Fidelity interestingly enough (I’m not Indian, I grew up in Lowell and my only 2 forrays outside of the CONUS were an afternoon in Tijuana sightseeing when I was a teen and a week skiing in Quebec). I’m also not a Software Engineer, rather a very senior Software QA guy (16 years experience) but from the time I initially got laid off in August through when I started here in Febrary I had 4 job offers and serious interest from at least a half a dozen other companies.

          That said I have seen the phenomonon you are referring to, where companies desperate for bodies still won’t make a hiring decision unless they find the absolute perfect candidate and is kind of what I was getting at with the second effect of the H1B program.

          The thing I find hillarous of course is that after working extensively with these “wonderful” H1B’s I find that the overwhelming majority of them are REALLY bad at their jobs. Like the Indian girl I had working for me at one point who claimed to have a Masters in Computer Science but in 4 weeks could not write a simple VBA Macro that I wrote myself in less than 8 hours.

          1. Another person from Lowell, MA. This can’t be good.

  32. Police officer is worse than Corrections Officer?

    1. Granted the differing locales, but is there really an appreciable difference?

      1. Police officers get to drive around in cars and do nothing unless they feel like it.

        Corrections officers work in a prison all day.

        1. But think of all the stress relief they get with the beatings and rape.

  33. Attorney came in at #87. It seems like a hard profession to generalize about. I’d have to imagine that a staff attorney for a government agency would have a more enjoyable work experience than a Secaucus, NJ public defender.

    1. It’s a quite varied field. A PD has a different job altogether than an entertainment lawyer, for instance.

      1. They have equal chances of meeting Charlie Sheen.

  34. Seems to me “physical demands” would be a feature, not a bug. Lots of times I’ll look longingly out the window at the landscapers playing in the dirt and wish I could make my mortgage payment doing that instead of sitting here like a fucking lump o’ suet.

  35. I’m also surprised at a job like “Financial Planner” doing so well.

    Financial Planners have to sign up clients, which makes them salesmen.

    I would think that would make it score poorly for stress. And for pay, since you don’t make any money at all if you don’t rope in some clients.

    1. Not quite, Fluffy. There are two main types of FP’s: Fee based non-commission, and the commissioned snake oil salesman trying to sell financial instruments and products that are inappropriate for a client’s risk tolerance.

      Unfortunately, they get lumped together.

      1. But even for the fee-based guys, don’t they have to get customers in the door to pay the flat fee?

        Or are there large firms out there where there’s a bullpen of financial planners hanging out waiting to be handed an order to work with a particular customer?

        Sorry, I legitimately don’t know.

        1. Both actually. Independents have to do the old fashioned street hustle.

          Both types are also present in big firms, like Charles Schwab which exclusively has fee-based non-comm specialists, for example. Big banks, like Citigroup, almost exclusively employ the snake oil types.

        2. You’re going to have two main types in that sort of business: rainmakers that bring in clients, and CFPs that handle asset management/investment strategy. Of course a good CFP will try to expand his network to get referrals, or provide a high level of service where your clients send you more referrals.

  36. So paralegal is higher than attorney?
    It’s as if assistant crack whore was higher than crack whore.
    And you know why I’m #196? It’s ’cause my assignment next week is Branson, Mo. True story. (I plan on Tweeting the Yakov Smirnoff show.)

    1. And I see my “crack whore” rehash was beaten by an hour by Baked Penguin.
      See. Bring the news, late. It’s what newspaper reporters do.

  37. W00T! Number 66!

    But again, saying mechanical engineer is as descriptive about what you do as saying ‘I work in an office’.

  38. I would be #56 if I didn’t have to complete an internship AND sit for a Board Exam. So I get to be closer to #110. Yay me. Plus, apparently Architects have some of the highest unemployment of degreed professionals.

    I totally need to become a software engineer.

    1. Yeah, you guys get screwed. Architecture is still basically an apprenticeship system, I hear.

      1. Yep. With the added bonus of government mandating we get a master’s degree.

  39. I’ve worked job #1 and job #200, and I would argue that their rankings should be swapped.


    Would that be a good job or a bad job??? (plastic p*ssy surgeon)
    A child asked Ted Williams how great it was to get to play basball every day, and Ted replied that it was just a job.
    Would examining p*ssy all day make one jaded? Especially bad looking p*ssy?

  41. You don’t need to be a software engineer. That’s not the job you’re looking for. You can go about your business as an actuary, HR manager, dental hygienist, or financial planner. Move along.

  42. Housewife with no kids (yet), I win.

    1. You’re alive!

  43. No paid political operative?

    No staffer?

    I’d say it has to be past 100 at least.

    1. Also, the only research thing is “Market Research”. Oppo Research is a very different beast.

  44. Typist definitely still exists, though we’re now mostly called transcriptionists or transcribers.

  45. I’m still aiming for job #0: Wealthy Man About Town who solves crime with his lovely sidekick, Margo Lane.

    1. isnt that like one rank from being kevin bacon?

    2. But then you have to know what evil lurks in the hearts of men.

  46. Computer Systems Analyst at #9? I don’t smoke or drink, but I’d like to have some of whatever the people who compile this list have.

  47. “Elected office also gets short shrift…”

    That’s probably because they were talking about real, actual jobs…

  48. I’m in the #1 slot as well and I can see it. I enjoy my job a lot. Good pay, good environment, flexibility, and all that.

    From a libertarian’s perspective software development is definitely near the top. No unions, no license required, no need for a master’s degree or even a BS in some cases (I have no degree at all and mostly self-taught). If an employer requires accreditation it’s done through private third parties (e.g., Java, Microsoft certification). It’s mostly meritocratic vs seniority based. There is hardly any regulation to speak of. I certainly don’t have to fill out any forms to write a For loop. It’s the closest to a true unregulated free labor market I can think of (H1-Bs excepted, just let them in and compete I say, though it would certainly hurt my rate). I guess it’s no wonder so many programmers are libertarian leaning (or are libs attracted to software because of its relative freedom).

    You also have the potential to create a new product out of nothing but the gray matter between your ears which to me is very rewarding. Of course, you can become rich in the right circumstances with a very high margin product. I mean Instagram just went for what? $1 Billion?

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