Basically Sharron's position is that the unemployed are lazy and spoiled by the government continuing to pay out unemployment benefits. Her solution is to lower the unemployment benefit thus encouraging the unemployed to take jobs at lower wages and "make a choice" to no longer be unemployed. HERE is the link to the video if you want to be personally encouraged by the candidate.
I realize I'm not a political blogger by any stretch of the imagination! I do not have a degree in political science or any experience in the matter, except in making my own decisions and forming my own opinions about candidates running for office. With that said, this is MY blog and I am indeed, UNEMPLOYED, so I think it's only realistic that I should share this opinion here.
The first thing that comes to mind is that we are NOT all created equal in the eyes of employers. There are qualifications and experiences that differ greatly from one job seeker to another. I can't claim that my thoughts are equal to every other job seeker out there, but I'm pretty sure I'm not alone.
Here's the thing Sharron, I'm not happy being unemployed and the people I see at the unemployment office sure don't look happy either! I'm not happy living in my parents house or taking money from siblings for babysitting my own nieces and nephews, but I'm certainly grateful. And I'm grateful, beyond my ability to express that I have unemployment benefits being paid to me right now. I'm scared out of my mind that I will run out of benefits before I am able to find work. Oh, and Sharron, lest you continue jumping to conclusions about myself or anyone in my situation, with my skill-set, experience or education, I have applied for numerous jobs that I am COMPLETELY OVERQUALIFIED for. And although I have willingly "made the choice" to work for less money than I can support myself on, the recruiters didn't make the same choice and kindly told me all about it in the very politically correct rejection emails I receive on a daily basis.
I realize not everyone has the same work ethic or diligence I do. I'm not even going to say I'm an ideal model to set a standard, but I am working my butt off to find a job. I will also reach for the stars and say that I'm not the only one out there working my butt off to find a job. Forgive me for not having the reference, but I read recently that there are seven unemployed people for every open position in the market right now. Funny how that "make a choice" doesn't work too well when all seven of us make the choice for the same job. But it's not JUST seven people we are competing against...hundreds of applications are received for the same positions.
So what if you take away or lower unemployment benefits? Sharron, do you think your plan will work and everyone whose benefits you take away will run out and get minimum wage jobs and be able to support themselves? Even if we try to get a basic wage job, what makes those us of with degrees more suitable for a position flipping burgers than the 16-year-old high school kid would be? All he wants to do is buy the clunker on the corner, when all we want to do is pay rent and buy groceries. Well according to the National Coalition for the Homeless, working a minimum wage job won't even let you do that...
"Declining wages have put housing out of reach for many workers: in every state, more than the minimum wage is required to afford a one- or two-bedroom apartment at Fair Market Rent.1 (National Low Income Housing Coalition, 2001). In fact, in the median state a minimum-wage worker would have to work 89 hours each week to afford a two-bedroom apartment at 30% of his or her income, which is the federal definition of affordable housing (National Low Income Housing Coalition 2001). Thus, inadequate income leaves many people homeless."
Maybe I'm missing the point because it's personal and I do take offense to being corralled into the same pig pen as the lazy and spoiled. I don't know what the solution is, but I do know that plenty of people including myself are able to stay afloat while living through their own personal unemployment hell because of the benefits that were earned when we were actually working full-time jobs. Go ahead, take it away Sharron but be prepared to clean out the spare room and set an extra plate at the table because I'll be moving to Nevada and expecting dinner promptly at 6!
If only encouragement was all we needed.