What you are observing is a common theme in bedside nursing - much of it does suck. My eyes started opening in nursing school during clinicals. Too much patient turnover, too many patients per nurse, too much documentation (related to the constant worrying over possible litigation), too-long shifts, too little respect for nurses, nurses' being the "catch all" and doing others' jobs, the higher acuity of patients, the more complex treatment regimens that are evolving with modern medicine, administrators with biz degrees as opposed to RN or MD degrees, etc., etc.
I mean, what happens when a nurse has an "off" day - a day she's just not feeling well? In a desk job, you can get through an "off" day. In bedside nursing, you run around like hell and what is expected of you requires hyper-acute thinking & physical condition, it seems. No "off" days allowed, I guess... And the actual days off - the non-worknig days - are spent just recovering from work. My desk jobs - even the ones I didn't like terribly - seem like paradise compared with nursing.