It can’t be stopped: there’s a new one every day of the week

I usually try to stay away from these kinds of stories but honestly . . . to me, today, these two no longer look like outliers. From the always amusing and sometimes squirm-worthy Dependable Renegade, where mockery of the stupid is an art form:

  • The Safety Net – North Carolina (motto: “We’re Number 45!”) has cut unemployment benefits so far that they are disqualified from a federal compensation program for the long-term jobless. The changes go into effect Sunday for North Carolina, which has the country’s fifth-worst jobless rate.
  •  Free Speech! – Xristian Xrazie Pennsylvania Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R-Satan’s Hollow) decided that allowing sodomite colleagues to speak on the floor of the legislature about DOMA was a bridge too far: [he said] “I did not believe that as a member of that body that I should allow someone to make comments such as he was preparing to make that ultimately were just open rebellion against what the word of God has said, what God has said, and just open rebellion against God’s law.”

Okeydokee.

3 responses to “It can’t be stopped: there’s a new one every day of the week

  1. North Carolina (motto: “We’re Number 45!”) has cut unemployment benefits so far that they are disqualified from a federal compensation program for the long-term jobless.

    Substantial evidence exists that shows people don’t begin their job search in earnest until 2 weeks before their benefits are about to expire.

    I faced this in my recent new role as business owner. An applicant was very open and honest with me explaining that he is now looking for work because his benefits are about to expire. Before that he was happy to collect the unemployment check and work for cash under the table.

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    • Right, Pino. I too know a couple who rode the unemployment checks until the deadline approached, and it frankly shocked me because they didn’t fit the image I had of them in my head. A childless couple, both of whom worked for low wages and benefits, they are solid citizens. He was laid off during the GR and didn’t seem concerned in the least. They live very simply in a small town where they attend church regularly and know almost everyone. About 2 weeks before his benefits expired he began looking and sure enough, got a job, one better than his previous one. I think they believe the scripture about the lilies of the field and it sure worked out that way. I would have been a nervous wreck.

      Clearly it’s very hard to set benefit levels wisely. My friends have no mortgage, having inherited their house, and they were comfortable in their modest lifestyle. Sometimes her lunch was an apple. It is almost like Andy Griffith’s Mayberry over there, very different from the commuter high-stress, high-debt lives of big-city people that characterize most Americans.

      From the government perspective I think the choice for the safety net is between occasionally paying too much and an Ebenezer Scrooge society in which people are driven into poverty, despair and broken families. Personally, I prefer the risk of overpaying and I think the country can afford it if we only stop trying to be the world’s policeman and a few other things. But, the dividing line will never be perfect, always in dynamic tension.

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      • About 2 weeks before his benefits expired he began looking and sure enough, got a job, one better than his previous one.

        I have a friend who does very well, he’s two management levels above me. He was recently promoted to that position and his wife no longer needed to work. So she arranged to be on the list at her job of people that would be let go. She collected unemployment for two years. She was going to resign anyway.

        Personally, I prefer the risk of overpaying

        And that is the right conversation to have. Personally, I think that offering 26 weeks – 6 months- is overpaying but I’m willing to do it in the spirit of compromise. Two years of benefits is too much!

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