Saturday, February 5, 2011

Congress: Stop Hiding Like Cowards and Face the Unemployed

* Written for the "Rhonda Taylor Project"

Why are the unemployed being blamed for the "End of Days" by members of Congress while they entertain corporate big-shots behind closed doors? But in public, in front of the cameras, they act so "caring"? When in truth, most don't even give a damn.

Since The Great Recession began in 2007, 8.5 million Americans lost their jobs, mostly due to down-sizing and forced increased worker productivity within shorter hours and work-weeks.

And also because of out-sourcing which has been going on for decades and has escalated - there are seminars, classes, and websites instructing businesses on all the ways to avoid governmental interference in these un-American, pro-corporate and anti-worker activities. For every job lost to foreign countries (whether skilled or unskilled), there are two jobs lost in America.

Then the U.S. socio-economic "eco" system further weakens and the downward spiral continues. When a factory worker gets off from work in Detroit, he might take his wife out to dinner, shopping, or to the movies. If his job goes to China, then a Chinese worker takes HIS wife out to dinner, shopping, or to the movies. Our restaurants, stores, and theaters in America close for lack of business - and then THOSE employee's economic activities are also curtailed as well (and so on, and so on, and so on...)

The long-term unemployed have been blatantly discriminated against for a variety of reasons, and their civil rights have been openly violated with regards to age. The laws put the burden of proof on the wronged job applicant who is usually unemployed and has limited financial resources to hire legal representation; whereas the large corporations have entire legal departments on retainer to defend every corporate action, whether legal or not (See Ralph Nader and the Ford Pinto).

In the light of the current economy, and the fact that millions of American workers were not discharged from their jobs for willful misconduct, the laws must be immediately changed to ban credit checks, driving records, tax records, and 3rd party computer software used by Human Resources to "evaluate" potential job candidates based on "fuzzy" physiological evaluations using algorithms in their screening process (drug testing would be fair so long as EVERYONE from the CEO on down were subjected to the same tests).

The UI exhaustees and "99ers" have no political representation in Congress, which on their own, legally qualifies them as a "minority" and they should have a protected status. Democracy holds that ALL Americans be considered when passing laws of the land, and NO ONE should be excluded from the process...even 6.4 million long-term Americans. They have been vilified and made the scapegoat for Wall Street and poor government regulation and their enforcement. This needs to stop immediately. The major media (AKA the "main stream media" that's owned by large corporate interests with political agendas) have been using the power of the Fourth Estate to propagandize the jobless, calling them "lazy alcoholic hobos". This also exceeds the bounds of decency to such a degree that it makes one question the real values of "American exceptionalism".

Government spending has been used as both a slander and a weapon against America's unemployed for over two years to date. But most of the unemployed have been law-abiding taxpayers all their lives, working 20, 30, and 40 years...and paying their taxes for space exploration and for the build up of our $650 billion-a-year military industrial complex. Half these people don't even believe in the two current wars, but a great many also fought in Viet Nam and Iraq. What did THEY fight for? To open "emerging markets" for corporate America so that years later after their jobs were shipped to China they would have to beg Congress for a government hand-out?

The UI "exhaustees" and "99ers" are a cross-section of American society, of all national origins, races, colors, and creeds. Single moms, college grads, and military vets. They're not beggars, they're Americans who were TWICE let down by their country. Once when the jobs left their shore, and twice with the failure of Congress to remedy the problem and provide adequate aid to properly help these people.

No, two damn years is NOT long enough, not if our political and corporate leaders screwed up this economy and our country so bad that it couldn't be fixed in two years.

Unemployment is only political for sitting members of Congress, but not for regular folks. There are just as many unemployed Republicans as there are unemployed Democrats. So stop using the already suffering jobless of this nation as a political football. They all suffer equally. A Tier Five to extend federal EUC benefits is merely a tiny ban-aid for the carnage that's already been done to these sons and daughters of our Greatest Generation. But yet, EVEN THAT seems to be too much for most of those in Congress to swallow, and all the while they still earn $174,000 a year - - - plus very generous benefits, some with lavish 5-Star "offices". And for what? For representing corporate interests? Where in the Constitution of the United States is the word "corporate" ever mentioned? I believe it reads, "We the people".

Those that exhausted ALL UI benefits need continued funding (even if it breaks the back of the very core of this economy). It's THE PEOPLE that should always come first, Period. The 99ers will also need jobs programs that pay a "living wage". LIVING and WAGE, together. There are not enough minimum wage jobs anyway, and if there were, many 99ers would be more than willing to work at least two of them if someone would even hire them.

There are NOT 15 million jobs available. These people DO NOT lack jobs skills. They are NOT lazy. What part of this four-sentence paragraph that's written in plain English do you NOT comprehend?

The government has not only ignored it's people, but they have also lied about the severity of the economic situation (and the ACTUAL unemployment rate), and purely for political purposes - as if politics alone were more important than REAL people...your neighbors, your friends, your ex-co-workers, the sons, daughters, fathers, and mothers of America. The 99ers, the forgotten ones. Another stain perpetuated on the fabric of America's history.

If the jobless take to streets in social unrest, Congress and corporate America (and Glenn Beck) will only have themselves to blame. And we ALWAYS know who is REALLY to blame, don't we? They are usually the one pointing the fingers of blame.

So to all the smug and arrogant members of Congress and their masters in corporate suits, I say this: Look me in the eye, and with a straight face, blame me again for losing my job and for being unemployed today.

"They that plough iniquity, and sow wickedness shall reap the same. His own eyes shall see his destruction or the calamities that shall come upon him; and he shall drink of the wrath of the Almighty."

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