Friday, October 7, 2011

Jobs: A Dim Memory

The title of this article says it all: For Many, A Job Is But a Dim Memory. I'm one of those many. The last day that I had a job was August 13, 2010. Like almost one-third of the 9.1 percent of Americans who are officially unemployed, I have been out of work for over a year. I say "officially unemployed" because the unemployment figures do not include those who, unlike me, have given up altogether on finding a job and dropped out of the workforce.

The Republicans say that the answer to this crisis is less taxes and fewer regulations. They say that the money that businesses save will be used to hire more workers. This makes no sense. Taxes on the wealthy and on corporations are already lower than they have been in generations, among the lowest in the developed world. And the government spent the last two decades reducing regulations on businesses. So where are the jobs? Why should we believe the wealthy when they say their taxes need to be cut even more? Where did all this money go that they have saved already, the money given back to the wealthy by the Bush tax cuts? Just how stupid do they think we are?

They will say that by even asking this question I am engaging in "class warfare." Well I feel like I've been fighting a war for the last thirteen months just trying to keep my head above water, to keep a roof over my family's heads, to keep the utilities turned on and food in the fridge and gas in the car.

Herman Cain summed up the right's position very well the other day: "Don't blame Wall Street, don't blame the big banks, if you don't have a job and you're not rich, blame yourself!"

In other words, the Republicans' message to the people of this country who are struggling to make it through this recession is, "Fuck you, it's your own fault."

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