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I haven't made a political post in a long, long time.

I'd make one now, except just thinking about it depresses me. I was not happy about the results of the midterm, needless to say... and I am even less happy, if possible, about this "compromise" that Obama has made with the GOP on taxes. From where I sit, it smells more like capitulation than compromise. Give a lot, get almost nothing.

Obama is the most intelligent president we've had since Jimmy Carter... and, sad to say, he is looking more and more like Jimmy every day. A good man, but not a good leader. At least not so far. He doesn't seem to have the stomach for a fight. We need another FDR, another JFK, another LBJ. NOT Jimmy II. (And, yes, I know, Obama has accomplished some important stuff. But so did Jimmy. Camp David accords, remember?)

Yeats was writing about his own time in "The Second Coming," I know, but sometimes I think he was prescient:

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

And could that rough beast whose hour has come round at least be... Sarah Palin?

No, please. Tell me that's just a bad dream. Somebody wake me up.



Dec. 15th, 2010 11:59 pm (UTC)
As someone who has been out of work long enough to be on the extension program, let me say this: I am no fan of Obama, but I do appreciate that he did something to make sure my family and I had a roof over our heads next month and my kids can get something for Christmas. The situation is clear that the Republicans would never pass the extension without conceding on the tax cut extensions.

Seriously, I've had it up to here with people moaning about the tax cuts and ignoring the fact that Obama still supported 2 million Americans. Would you be complaining as loudly if he had refused to concede and left the rest of us 2 million twisting in the wind? Or are we disposable, able to be ignored since many of us are now slipping into poverty?
Dec. 16th, 2010 01:05 am (UTC)
How long should "temporary" unemployment insurance last? Until you get a job offer providing for equal or better pay than your previous job?

Do we really need 3 years?

If you've really been out of work for 2 years and have really tried to get a job, any job, even ones you might consider beneath you, and have worked day and day out trying to find a job. I feel sorry for you, it sucks, but I don't think most people are in that situation.

In anycase, consider moving. Many areas of North Dakota have more job openings than people, so I hear.

I personally feel that unemployment should be temporary, with a defined end date, otherwise, as Paul Krugman says, it is a disincentive to look for work.
Dec. 16th, 2010 02:36 am (UTC)
So, first: Even without a recession, every economy has a certain amount of structural unemployment. There will never be enough jobs for everyone. Ever. What happens to those folk? Should there be structural support for them, or not?

Also, you're being both insensitive and tone deaf. We're at 10% unemployment right now-that's a huge number. Being unemployed isn't a character flaw- it's a function of our current economic situation. Long-term unemployment is absolutely not uncommon right now. And suggesting that a person with no income should just move is short-sighted. Moving is expensive. And moving might also mean ending up in a place where you have no support network in addition to no job.

The practical result of giving unemployment benefits a defined end date and that there will always be some people who are likely to be homeless, hungry and without options. Imagine trying to hunt for a job when you're living in a shelter. Or if you can't pay for phone service. Or if you can't afford reliable transportation. Seriously. Long-term unemployment can lead to real poverty which, weirdly, can make it harder to get a job.

No one deserves to be homeless or hungry. Ever. Full stop. As long as obtaining food and shelter is dependent on being employed, there needs to be some sort of safety catch for folks who don't have a job.
Dec. 16th, 2010 02:57 am (UTC)
This is the kind of attitude that really angers me....
This is the very kind of attitude that really makes me angry. People like you seem to think that it's as easy as getting out of bed in the morning. IT'S NOT!!!!

People like you need to quit criticizing others because you've had better luck. Not everything in our lives is under our control.
Dec. 16th, 2010 06:41 am (UTC)
You're mistaken in that the Republicans wouldn't have extended the benefits. The Republicans have extended it several times already, voting with the Democrats. What they are fighting for is extending them but paying for them by cutting from something else. Not simply borrowing more and more and more to pay for it.
Having said that, how long should they keep extending them before people go out and find a job? 4,5,6,7,8,9 or hell why not extend them for decades at a time. The country is broke and if spending continues at this pace the house of cards will fall. I firmly believe we should help our own before half the other crap our government spends our money on, but at some point you have to take responsibilty for your life and not depend on the government.
I wish you the best in finding work and providing for your family.


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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