1.2 million More Americans Scrape By…

March 2, 2010 at 10:45 pm (Uncategorized)

I don’t pretend to know everything about politics, what’s going on with the economy, or who’s in the right about things. But I do know what isn’t right. Denying people the simple right to be able to continue to live comfortably.

Today, Senator Jim Bunning (R) of Kentucky attempted to filibuster a bill that would extend the unemployment benefits of 1.2 million Americans.

Senator Bunning’s website declares that he is on the Senate committee that is in charge of deciding how the government’s money is spent. That’s fine, we need that, we’ve got a deficit that’s trillions of dollars in the hole. He also claims to be a defender of Social Security.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe that unemployment falls under Social Security, am I right?

Now, here’s the thing. Our unemployment rate is, if you haven’t noticed, rather high. Supposedly we’re climbing out of this recession, (I call it a depression in any language, we had similar circumstances in the 1920s that lead to the Great Depression), but there’s still a high percentage of people who still have no job and cannot get jobs. I know people who are recent college graduates that are working in menial service jobs. Some friends have three jobs, because they don’t have enough money to get by. They have bachelor’s degrees!

The other fun part is people who don’t have bachelor’s degrees, but need one to get a job. Well, they don’t have money to go to college to get a bachelor’s degree. So they try to get a job to get money to pay for school. There are no jobs. They don’t qualify for grants or scholarships or loans. So they’re stuck in an endless cycle of no job but qualified jobs, but can’t pay for school because they need a job, but can’t get money from the government for whatever reason (usually because their credit won’t allow for it or something), and it’s like “Hooowwwww do we fix this??”

The answer, my dears, is quite simple. Actually, it’s not. That’s why we’re in this mess. No one knows how to fix it. There’s only one sure-fire way to fix the economy, and that’s to go to war. That’s the real reason we were able to get out of the Great Depression, by entering WWII. But we’re already fighting a war. Maybe not a full-scale one anymore, but we’ve got plenty of troops still overseas in Iraq, Afghanistan, and even helping in Haiti and Chile.

But while it might not be an easy answer as to how to go about fixing this problem (it doesn’t help that we’re still stuck in a transition between an industrial economy to a service economy; it may be more efficient, but we might to better to get rid of the robots and let people put things together in factories again), it doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t attempt to provide for our own. They don’t have jobs, not because they’re lazy or they just want to live on the government’s charity, but because they happen to live somewhere that’s on the out and out.

And moving’s out of the option, because that costs a lot of money. They don’t have that, Mr. Bunning, because you’re trying to cut them off remember? And where would you be without your constituents to keep voting you into office, earning hundreds of thousands of dollars a term (the average Congressman and -woman earns about $174,000, the party leaders earn $193,400, and the Speaker of the House earns $223,500) while working maybe 90/365 days of the year, and getting more benefits than the people you represent can ever hope for.

Maybe during the next financial committee meeting you can bring up the idea to cut way back on you and your fellow Congressmen and -women’s salaries so you’ll be able to fund unemployment rates. Y’know, do the opposite of what you did for half a decade: vote yourselves a pay raise of 2.2%.

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