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Happy Labor Day

How ironic is it that today is the day that just under 9 million Americans lost their unemployment benefits. On “Labor Day”. These are special benefits enacted because of the Covid pandemic, going to people who lost their jobs through no fault of their own.

During the Great Recession, jobless benefits were extended from when the recession started in 2008-2009, all the way until 2013. The current pandemic is more severe, and isn’t even over with new variants appearing, and yet the benefits were killed in less than 2 years after the pandemic started.

Some (mostly Republican) states ended their jobless benefits even earlier, but multiple studies have shown that ending benefits had almost no effect on increasing the number of people looking for work. Some states ended benefits because of a false belief that the benefits were encouraging lazy people to not work.

Instead, with less money being spent by people who are unemployed, it is believed that ending the previous unemployment benefits will actually hurt the economy, and lead to additional job losses.


Also published on Medium.

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7 Comments

  1. Jeff wrote:

    I was let go from my job a few weeks ago. I’m currently looking for work, and on unemployment. Thankfully, I get just enough from the state to tide me over until I find another job.

    The problem is, even though everyone’s hiring, there’s also a lot of people looking for work, so more competition. I’ve had four interviews in the last two weeks, and no offers. I’m college educated, I have a great resume, and am willing to do just about anything from physical labor to office work. And I can’t find a job.

    Ending the extended unemployment benefits doesn’t change my desire to be employed, it just means I have less spending power in the meantime.

    Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 5:30 am | Permalink
  2. Ray wrote:

    Myopic “conservatives” are always ready to fail the American people.

    Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 8:35 am | Permalink
  3. PatriotSGT wrote:

    I have 2 different thought streams on this issue.
    First, is with 10 million job opening, there are certainly jobs available and if folks can work, they should. It might not be their dream job, but it’s work that pays bills. They can then direct efforts towards getting a better job more to their liking.

    2nd, my parents (die hard Democrats) told me growing up, the government should be there if someone falls down to dust them off, pick them up and help for a little until they get back in their feet.

    Problem is, according to my 2 20something sons is some people they know weren’t even trying to find work. And they reported those folks would rather sleep in, do nothing and get paid, even to the point of bragging about it.

    Ian a contractor for the gov’t. The contract I am currently working ends this Friday, but I have leave saved up and 6 different job opportunities to choose from. At equal of greater pay. Now I understand I am 60, already retired from nearly 25 years in the Army, have the education and certifications along with decades of experience, but that is what we should work towards. And it takes time and effort. It does not happen over night or in a year.

    Yeah, I believe we did what was necessary to give people a hand up to get going again, but at some point (now) they need to take care of themselves and do what is necessary to be successful. (And yes, 20 some years ago, when I was temporarily out of work I collected standard unemployment for 5 months. But during the time I signed up and took the 7 MCSE course and got hired after passing the first 2).

    Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 5:42 pm | Permalink
  4. PatriotSGT wrote:

    And Jeff, best wishes and remember; persistence is omnipotent!
    Keep moving forward, you will be successful..

    Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 5:47 pm | Permalink
  5. Iron Knee wrote:

    PSgt, I am not arguing against your point. Yes, people should work to support themselves. That is a great ideological point. But I’m a pragmatist. And according to all the data we have, killing the extended unemployment aid will make matters worse, not better.

    There may be some people who brag about not working, but I haven’t heard any of that. Instead, I have friends who cannot find a job even vaguely similar to what they did before.

    For example, one friend works in animation, but got laid off when all the theaters closed. The only jobs he can find are ones that would expose him to getting Covid, which is a big risk for him. What is he supposed to do?

    I know someone else who is a teacher, but his school district is not enforcing rules that students should be masked. Again, this would endanger him. He is actually ready to quit his job, even though he would not get any unemployment benefits if he did so.

    And just so you know how I feel about this. I was laid off of some work I was doing because of the pandemic. I would qualify for unemployment, but I did not sign up for it because I don’t need it. But I fully support giving extended benefits because they will help the economy grow, and get our country working again.

    Now all we have to do is get everyone vaccinated and wearing masks.

    Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at 4:41 pm | Permalink
  6. PatriotSGT wrote:

    IK, yes I know about those outliers in the job market. I know about school districts with narrow vision.
    But, there are numerous examples that do show if organizations have vision and adaptability that can prosper. Unfortunately, many such entities do not have the right leadership. And perhaps it means those entities will fade from history, perhaps as they should.

    As you are possibly aware I am also a small time landlord. Fortunately, I am also a good judge of human character and 80% of my (5) tenants have paid their rent. I am not a corporate landlord, and I don’t know any of those. In fact, most landlords are small mom and pop folks who own just a few properties and rent to folks that might not be able to otherwise get decent housing. When my tenent s were late or paid less I didn’t harass or even ask. I just paid for them and made the required mortgage payments. But why should I be the only one to suffer? I did not withhold property tax, annual fees for rental licenses etc.
    Suppose, that teachers or landlords within a poorly managed school district or municipality withheld taxes and fees? The States, counties and towns would have confiscated property etc. as they did in my area. How is that fair?

    As to Corona, I think we’ll need to get use to it being around. It will probably be like the flu at some point with annual vaccinations for the variant of the year (like with the flu)and managed. If we look at Flu, with an average of 60,000 deaths per year, we’ll have to accept a certain number of annual casualties. And perhaps that will spur folks to take proper precautions.
    I don’t know if I’m right IK, but folks just need to figure out how figure stuff out. Meaning, if your chosen profession is not working maybe you need to re-tool and try something different. Nothing stays the same, we always have to adapt, overcome and move forward. That is human kind through the ages, older methods/models die out and are replaced by what’s now.

    Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at 6:33 pm | Permalink
  7. ebdoug wrote:

    I think anyone in the US is entitled to food, clothing, housing, education and medical care. I now have eight grandchildren who have worked their butts off. Two are in college now. One problem with not working is depression. When I did taxes for people, those unemployed were depressed. I remember my brother getting out of college before he was sent to Vietnam working at a gas station, just to work. My brother is still with us.

    Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

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