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Jul 7, 2010 5:54 pm

navet - Woodrow Wilson must be your hero. 

I'd be curious to hear what it is that you mean by a progressive renaissance.  What does that mean for the future of our country?  What does that mean to us socio-econimically?  Politically?  Just a guess on my part, but I'm guessing we're going to find that your progressive renaissance wouldn't make Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, or Ben Franklin very happy.  But Woodrow Wilson will LOVE it.   

Neocon Nazis?  Seriously?  We disagree with your progressive views, so we're neocon Nazis?  You know there's a difference between a conservative and a neocon.  You might want to figure that out before you start hurling insults.  

Jul 7, 2010 6:41 pm


I'll never understand political idealogues.

I like how both sides are using words like "vast majority" and "most".  How in the world do you know?

Do you work at an unemployment office?

If you have anectodotal experience, then fine.  But I would venture to guess most of us don't.  I simply have some examples of people I know (or who are clients). 

As for the comment, "most people want to work", I think this is false.  This, of course is my opinion.  But how many people have worked in a corporate environment?  How many of the people there actuallly WORK?

Not many.  In fact, I'm guessing 20% of the people do most of the work, like anywhere else. 

So, you are saying these people want to work, I think you are meaning to say that they want a "job".  And I think that most people can agree on that.


Of course "20% do the work" isn't

Jul 7, 2010 6:46 pm

Clueless is no way to go through life sfiffy! Ben Franklyn was very progressive. George Washington, as president, followed the recommendations of Alexander Hamilton, who was very progressive with respect to debt and the exchanges. Thomas Jefferson suffered from extreme inconsistency, backtracked on political philosophy when he was faced with the reality of the presidenct(aka, Lousianna purchase). Maybe you neocon christian nazis shoul read something more in depth than glen bicker.

Jul 9, 2010 1:33 am


Jul 7, 2010 8:28 pm

BG - I think you have me all wrong and completely right at the same time. I do want and try to help as much as I can. I do not believe in being forced to do so. I noticed you did not respond to my comment of exchanging unemployement checks for college credits or community service hours worked. Trust me when I say I know all about falling on hard times, but I would not move in with my neighbor and lounge around on his couch for months without giving something back. So let me restate my POV if I am forced to pay for entitlements, I expect something in return. I personally think there should be more given to the <18 and >65 crowd because of what they can do for this country and what I hope they have done for this country.

Also for the Bible comments, I will just say that if you let someone get between you and God, well guess who is closer.

Navet - Why do you always start with the Republican nazi hell fire and brimstone everytime? good grief dude...

Jul 7, 2010 8:33 pm

OK, fine.  We'll put our disagreements on history aside for the time being. 

You still didn't answer my original questions, so I'll repeat them for you.  You're looking forward to this progressive renaissance.  What does that mean for the future of our country?  What does that mean to us socio-econimically?  Politically?

I'm curious what a brilliant mind like yours believes will be a positive outcome for our country if this progressive renaissance comes to fruition.

Oh yeah, and it's Ben Franklin.  With an I not a Y. 

Jul 7, 2010 9:03 pm



I'll never understand political idealogues.

I like how both sides are using words like "vast majority" and "most".  How in the world do you know?

Do you work at an unemployment office?

If you have anectodotal experience, then fine.  But I would venture to guess most of us don't.  I simply have some examples of people I know (or who are clients). 

As for the comment, "most people want to work", I think this is false.  This, of course is my opinion.  But how many people have worked in a corporate environment?  How many of the people there actuallly WORK?

Not many.  In fact, I'm guessing 20% of the people do most of the work, like anywhere else. 

So, you are saying these people want to work, I think you are meaning to say that they want a "job".  And I think that most people can agree on that.


Of course "20% do the work" isn't


Interesting, you leave out the part, "I would guess", yet quote the entire thing.  What is interesting is that you don't even qualify your statements.  You think that you "know" everything.

Navet, you are exactly what is wrong with this country.  You only see and hear what you want to hear.  Just like those ridiculous partisan hacks that fill up Capitol Hill.

Jul 9, 2010 1:36 am


Jul 8, 2010 11:46 am

You and navet are like opposite ends of the same stick.  Partisan bickering about what is right and what is wrong, what is progressive, what is conservative.

The truth, as always, is somewhere in between.

Jul 8, 2010 1:17 pm

Respectfully speaking to both points....

Spiff & Magician - Is it possible that although you can make it past hard times and still keep your head on straight that there are people in our country who are simply not able to take care of themselves like you? I mean to say maybe we are all not equal in terms of intelligence or capability and it is possibly unfair for you to say "I made it on XYZ, why can't Joe Unemployed down the street do the same?".

Bond guy and Navet- I disagree that most people on unemployment want to find work. I really think that you are wrong there. They want to find work that pays as well as the job they left (and maybe offers the same level of low productivity as we know the least productive jobs are the ones missing now) , but that is certainly different than finding work in general.

I personally disagree that not extending unemployment is going to create a new under class of poor. I almost find that idea absurd in a respectful manner.

Premise A. Unemployed are not lazy

Premise B. Not extending unemployment will leave the unemployed in a permanent state of poverty.

I think those statements are contradictory. If the majority of unemployed are not lazy; then obviously when !#$#$ hits the fan, they are going to find work, make work, get work, hell I bet Edward Jones would have a hiring frenzy with all these people willing to knock on doors for 5 years

Last question - Some of us have talked about putting people back to work on infastructure. Sounds great... is it possible, if so what infastructure? Where? How much would it cost? My bet is less than the blank check for unemployment.

Jul 8, 2010 2:35 pm

RW - certainly there are a few people in the unemployment lines who are not as intelligent as me.    But, I think the average person who suddenly finds himself or herself out of work for over 6 months really needs to reevaluate where they are in life and what changes they could possibly make to make themselves more marketable.  

A couple of examples come to mind.  First a friend who used to be a home inspector.  Well, that was great when the RE market was booming, but not so much now.  He took some classes at the local CC and is now working in a local hospital as some sort of receptionist type job.  He's making decent money and paying his bills.  He's also contributing to a 401k for the first time in his life.  He made a change when he realized something needed to change. 

Second is a relative of mine who got out of college, many years ago, and just couldn't find a job in his field.  He is trained as an Electrical Engineer.  Went to the best engineering school in the state and graduated with a good GPA.  Unfortunately, so did a lot of other folks.  He worked two jobs, completely unrelated to his degree, for about a year, just to make sure there was food on the table at home.  Finally he decided that there was one place that doesn't turn away any able bodied people willing to do the work.  He joined the Army.  Spent 6 years in the Army, got out and went into the National Guard, and landed a job as a security guard at a nuclear power plant.  He started talking with the people who worked there and they found out about his EE degree and encouraged him to apply.  His time in the military and his EE degree landed him a job.  So now he's got a 401k, pension from his company and eventually the military, has two incomes, and a pretty rosy future (minus the misc trips to Iraq, Kosovo, and Bosnia).  Again another person who made a change when a change was necessary. 

I'm not saying that it's possible to raise a family or even pay the bills on unemployment checks.  I'm positive it wouldn't be for me and my family.  I'm also positive that if for some reason I find myself in the unemployment lines, I would be willing to take any job that just simply paid the bills.  Even if it meant I only got $100 more a month than what the unemployment check would have been, I'd take it. 

This refusal of some people to go outside their normal field of employment is a big problem.  I searched on yesterday for a few minutes and found over 250 entry level, no degree required jobs just in my city alone.  I'm positive there are jobs out there for the people willing to take them.  They might not be the kind of job you want to keep for the rest of your working career, but in my opinion it's better to be working at anything than to be taking a handout from the government. 

Jul 9, 2010 1:38 am


Jul 8, 2010 6:22 pm

Life in low pay lane!

Let's go with the "take any job that pays the bills agrument." Let's ignore that this thinking falls flat on it's face on the first count; that is, these jobs won't pay the bills. So, now we're flipping burgers at Wendy's. This is known as a "job easy to get" because it's in the "Jobs easy to get catagory." The job is easy to get because it requires no skill, no training, and no license. It is easy to get because it offers low pay, long hours, and no benefits.

Of course while you're busy working at Wendy's for 39 hours a week, 39 hours to keep you as part timer thus denying you full time wages and benefits, you have put your engineering degree aside and with it 25 years of experience as a professional engineer, program director and project leader. Still, you are actively seeking work in your field. And, as luck would have it you have a promising interview coming up next week. But there is a problem. You are scheduled to work that day. You know if you ask, the manager will not give you time off. There are no days off at this Wendy's. So, you decide to call in sick. You go on the interview. It goes well. The next day you go back to Wendy's, work your shift, and are called into the manager's office just before you leave. He says "Don't come back, you are fired." When you ask why, the manager, all of 24 years old, dismisses you with a wave and says " you missed yesterday." And with that your career at Wendy's come to a close.

Getting fired from a "Job easy to get" is as easy as getting hired. The "keep your job threshold" is very low in these positions. There is a line of unskilled people willing to take your place. Hirable with a phone call. Thus the revolving door in this catagory.

But for you this is a big problem. You gave up receiving employment benefits after your layoff from Lockeed because you believed in work and didn't want to take public assistance. The serverance benefits from Lockeed, along with the pay from whatever job you could get would allow you to go a year without tapping into savings. And, surely you would land someplace before then. But things hadn't worked out as planned. Lockeed now, was almost two years in the rearview mirror. The economy was still on its back.

The series of low pay meanial jobs had interfered with finding a job as an engineer. The Taxi company fired you when they found out you were taking time off to interview instead of looking for fares. The phone collector job was run by pricks who wouldn't let you take a bathroom break, let alone take time off for interviews. Plus they constantly shorted you on your paycheck. The chicken processing plant gave you a week to come up to speed before you were gone. To your credit  you out lasted the eight people you were hired with. And the Hyundai dealership was a joke. A $250 a week draw against commission. They only paid you $25 per car sold. That meant you needed to sell 10 cars a week just to make the draw! That's 40 cars a month! One month in and the dealership had sold a grand total of 110 cars. Split between 11 salesman ranging from 23 cars down to 6 per guy. No one made draw and the bottom five guys were fired. You among them. That was a relief at the time because of the pressure from managment the 12 hour shift 70 hour weeks and all the crap from customers who  believed it was their God given right ot abuse car salesman. 70 hour weeks left no time to seach for work in your field. Next up was the in home carpet sales job. They kept sending you on appointments with only a husband or wife, unclosable one leggers in the biz parlence, that lasted only two weeks. The Verizon and Sprint stores wouldn't hire you., too old, even though you could run circles around the kids working there. Same story at Apple. Out of options, you then worked for Werner Transportation. Some how you survived the CDL training. You endured a trainer who didn't teach and only wanted the extra training check.  Still,  somehow, you were qualified to command an 80,000lb vehicle carrying freight worth over a million dollars.  Then 3 weeks into your first solo trip, 1200 miles from home, you are called to the yard office of the Werner depot in Houston Texas . When you enter the office the manager fires you on the spot. He said you made an unauthorized turn onto an unapproved route. This is bullshit, but there is no arguing. He gives you bus fare home. You get home and apply to other trucking companies.  But, none of the big companies will hire you because Werner has queered your abstract. Straighten that out and call us back came the reply again and again. To straighten it out requires hiring lawyer. With what money? You find a job working for a local produce trucker. He puts  you into an aging Kenworth T600. The truck is a POS. The owner insist you drive the truck even though the brakes are not working properly. You walk away. Weeks later you read in the paper that, that very truck has been invovled in a horrific accident. You couldn't get a job over at Enterprise rent a car because of your age, 49. No one at the location over 30. That brought you to taking job at Wendy's. And now this! A real probelm because you chose to work rather than collect, and you were fired, there are no unemployment benefits to be has at this point. Then, in the mail, a letter from a lawyer. Werner is suing you to recover the cost of your CDL training, $5500! Included is a copy of the agreement you signed. The promised phone call from the interview comes. Your heart races. The interviewers loved you but believe that you are over qualified and wouldn't be happy in the position offered. You assure them that is not true. But the deal is sealed, they've hired someone else, and cheerfully wish you good luck.  On the table in front of you is a notice that you have special delivery letter waiting for you at the post office. You know the letter is from the mortgage company. Final forecloure notice. Your heart sinks. The kids will be home soon. You gather yourself. You pick up the local paper and see that the Kia dealership one town over is looking for six promising candidates for career position, draw against commission, rewarding career for hard workers. You dial the phone.

Ok, guys ,read that and understand this - that is life in the jobs easy to get catagory. Hired in a heartbeat and fired just as fast. Just ballbusting work for little money and no respect. There is no reason that anyone who has skill, training, education, or experience beyond that level to subject themselves purposely to that existence. Why? because as i said in the very first sentence, it fails on the first count. It doesn't pay the bills. And it never will. Lowering oneself to that level permenantly relegates you to the underclass of the working poor with no way out.  Not a way to raise and support a family. Take the unemployment check and work your butt off to find a job that fits your qualifications. it can be in a different field, different state, different country, just not on the bottom wrung.

Jul 8, 2010 6:44 pm

BG - You apprently have never worked at a fast food restaurant.  They don't fire you for calling in sick.

I'm going to chime in again with a personal story.  When I was in graduate school (just about to graduate), a classmate of mine mentioned that he would never take a job for less than $80k. 

He ended up with a decent job making $90k for a while.  Got a few promotions and got laid off in 2008.  Now, I worked with this guy quite a bit on projects.  This is the guy who didn't show up for project meetings, who never did his part of the work, so either I or someone else had to take up the slack.  Those of you who have MBAs know what I'm talking about.

It is no wonder this guy got laid off.  He is still, to this day, out of work, because he is sticking to his (I need to make $80k).  His wife works two jobs (I see her at the gym in the a.m.), and he tells her she can quit as soon as he gets a good paying job again.

Really?  You are going to let your wife do that?  W.T.F.?!

The job market is littered with these people.

BG - your example of the guy with REALLY bad luck would be the minority.  It's like my uncle.  Wants to start a business, and only needs $5k to do it.  My dad said he'd give it to him, if he would just get a job in the meantime.  Show us you are willing to work.  Show us you are willing to do SOMETHING.  ANYTHING. 

I will never hire someone who has been languishing on unemployment.  I am at the rate of hiring somebody new every two months this year (that is, increasing headcount).  You better show me some work ethic and not entitlement.

Jul 9, 2010 1:34 am


Jul 8, 2010 7:02 pm

Mag, my guy is an amalgam of several people. Not that, that scenerio couldn't happen. The point is that joining the working poor does not solve any problems for the unemployed person. They get an unlivable wage, usually below poverty level, no benefits, and no future. This comes at a cost of interfering with the task at hand, finding a job that will maintain the lifestyle the individual worked and sacrificed to attain.

And contrary to your experience in fast food, these jobs are very easy to lose. Not that taking a day off will cost you the job. But it doesn't take much.

I'm not saying that under no circumstances  don't take an easy to get poverty pay job, just not as your first move.

Everyone of us can come up with personal examples of people who bootstrapped themselves up. Such people are the exception, not the rule. Once most people get relegated to the bottom wrung, the bottom wrung is where they stay.

Again, you like the others opposed to helping people demean the unemployed with your word usage. Lanuishing on unemployment?

Jul 9, 2010 1:39 am


Jul 8, 2010 7:24 pm

Mily, what qualifies you judge anyones thinking?

By the way we missed you, how was rehab?

Jul 8, 2010 7:27 pm

Unemployment insurance is paid out of unemployment insurance taxes that all employers of full time employees pay. So we all pay for this insurance through our employers. The idea of unemployment insurance isn't just for the benefit of the employee. It serves the greater good by keeping the flow of goods and services during brief periods of economic downturn. To say that people on unemployment are freeloaders would be similar to saying people who collect disability or life insurance payments are freeloaders. And to say that people are somehow "happy" to recieve about 1/3 of their income to do nothing, is not only inaccurate(you have to show proof of job hunting), but downright foolish. And like BG said so eloquently, taking any job is not usually a solution. But the truth is, we all have the right to unemployment insurance because we pay for it.

Jul 9, 2010 1:31 am