Saturday, July 11, 2009

Where are we now?

It appears that I'm at my last extention for the unemployment and now the state agency that doles out the checks would like me to "try harder". Strange what a few years make. Prior to the Bush debockle I never had to worry about being on the out of work list. In fact I think I was only on it one other time prior to the end of 07. If I needed work I could just make a call to a former coworker or supervisor and they would steer me where the work was. In fact most of the time I'd be up to my eyeballs in some job and others would call wanting to know if I could work for them. Not so any more. I was working at the airport in 07 when I got this epiphany. Like a punch to the stomach and the sudden realization that dark days were ahead. As if you were watching a favorite movie when all of a sudden the screen goes black and no sound. You wait for the projectionist to fix the problem but nothing. So here we sit in the dark in our seats and try to amuse ourselves until the popcorn and one litre pop runs out.
I made some calls to a couple of companies yesterday as required by the unemployment agency. There's another story in itself. They've become a prime example of what Kafka was talking about in his novel "The Castle". Maybe they used the book to restructure their agency some years back. But anyway all the companies called were having a hard time keeping their regular people working. It almost sounded as if those on the other end of the line were sitting there doing nothing but try to justify their own existance. I think one of them I talked to was the actual owner.

A relative called amongst my being busy to inform me that her husband's company was being shut in a few weeks. She also informed me that another relative who had just bought into a retirement community one of those areas with dues and rules just discovered that the developer went bankrupt and with several foreclosures they'll have their dues raised. All is not good. There seems to be only two members of the family left working and even their positions are shakey. But again I digress. The real reason for the post was to give an indication of what's going on in the rest of the country from comments I found on one survival site. Now I'm not one to go to a survivalist site. They've been around as long as I can remember and to date I've never seen an armed uprising of the masses in this country ever. I don't expect one this time round either. But on this web site the author asks a simple question about how things are going around the country. You may reply in the comments was the request. So here it is:

A general report on the state of the nation

I realize that this is but anecdotal but I think you get the point. Rather than some talking head tell you how rosey things are it's nice to get it first hand from those who are going through it. Notice how we aren't seeing tent cities on the 6pm news anymore, but I'm sure we'll be seeing more of them in the next few months. Let's call them Bushvilles if you will because I'd like to leave a true historic legacy to George W.


Tom Harper said...

Bushville would be an excellent name for these tent cities. There's already a sewage treatment plant near San Francisco that got renamed to the "George W. Bush Sewage Treatment Plant" (not sure of the exact name). But the more of these legacies he can have, the better.

Good luck with everything. Things are definitely a lot more shaky than the talking heads are letting on.

BBC said...

I can make a few phone calls and have work, I just don't want it, I get by just fine on my SS money as long as it keeps coming in.

I can find work and get extra money just fine because I have a lot of skills and I'm willing to work for fifteen or twenty bucks an hour when other monkeys want much more.

Everyone wants too fucking much, and that is what is wrong with this world. Bah, my SS money is less than a grand a month and I piss half of it away.

Anyone needing more than a grand a month is doing something wrong, or wants too much.

Or others want too much from them.

S.W. anderson said...

Demeur, I wonder if there might be an opportunity to teach others HAZMAT basics, or give refresher training. I'm thinking police, sheriff's officers and hospital personnel, and not necessarily in and around the big city, but out in smaller communities.

I'm sorry it's looking so bleak, for you and so many. All of us who are not wealthy and well connected have been set up and let down.

That's not an idle generality. This spring I read Robert Reich's Supercapitalism. Right now, I'm reading Kevin Phillips' Bad Money. If you want to understand the true dimensions of the mess we're in, along with how and why we're in it, these two books explain it all in detail.

If even half the people out of work and in a bad way now would read both books, it could transform the country over time.

There are many reasons why the American middle and working classes have let themselves be used, abused and tossed aside over the last 30-40 years. Failure to pay proper attention and do their homework as workers, voters and citizens is high on the list.

There will be no significant, lasting change for the better in this country until people in large numbers get a nitty-gritty understanding of the realities of their situation and band together to demand a turnaround.

Distributorcap said...

not only does washington live in a bubble so does the media, which avoids the real problems of america like the plague

Demeur said...

SW - I had considered teaching a while back and there were a couple of positions open but I wasn't lucky enough to get one. One required fluency in Spanish wouldn't you know and my Spanish isn't that good. As of late they're working on a training program for "green jobs" but they have more than enough teachers.

I'd agree with you about being informed and letting those at the top take advantage. It's been going on for some time now.

Billy - Tell that to the people in China making $500 a month that is when they don't get cheated and actually get paid. Or there's the people in Mexico making $5 a day when there's work. You should know that giving donations to the gals down there. You want a shocker? Look up the price of real estate in Mexico.

Roger Owen Green said...

Re: S.w.'s comment - maybe you could be an entrepreneur, offering HAZMAT classes to govts and those paranoid folks who have them so they can survive the next war in America. Y'know - the Todd Palin types.