I've been contracting for most of the past five years (I'm a software engineer), and since my first contract gig I've been wondering why working salaried is the norm. I may have to take care of my own "benefits", but the hourly rate is better, includes 100% control over my schedule and I get a pass on all the "face time" nonsense that adds no value because management prefers real productivity when they're being billed at an hourly rate.

The biggest bonuses? I get to be a present dad when I need to be. And I don't "belong" to anyone, so I can pick up other work or spend hours on my own projects as I see fit. I think everyone should operate this way, and the more of us who switch, the less power these throwbacks to the 20th century will have.