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Old 05-22-2009, 08:06 AM
 
943 posts, read 2,900,415 times
Reputation: 709

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A relative of mine is unemployed and has been for almost a year. He lives in a small town in Michigan with an unemployment rate of nearly 20%. He is in his fifties and owns a home in this small town. When the factories closed it became almost impossible to get a job in his town and for fifty miles around if you were a middle aged factory worker. Working on the assembly line is all he has done for the last twenty five years.

He has been living on savings and unemployment insurance with a few odd jobs here and there. Because of the extended benefits he has been able to keep collecting unemployment for almost a year. But the money and unemployment benefits is running out and he is no closer to finding a job.

There is just nothing for him in the small town he lives in or for fifty miles around. What should the government do about him? Should they pay him welfare? Retraining sounds good but there are just no jobs and the house he lives in and owns is underwater, and a burden that stops him from relocating. HE WANTS TO WORK!

What should he do? What should the government do about people like him?
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:22 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,068 posts, read 76,913,074 times
Reputation: 27652
It's every man for himself. The government is not your sugar daddy. The government is not there to make it all better for you. There are safety nets but they are temporary until you get back on your feet.

Have your relative move in with you and help him. That is what family is for.
6.5 million unemployeed and you want the government to take care of them ?
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:28 AM
 
1,788 posts, read 4,435,296 times
Reputation: 1249
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend Traveler View Post
What should he do? What should the government do about people like him?
Nothing.

There's a point where an adult needs to get off their ass and take care of themselves, and not expect the taxpayer to foot the bill. If he's been sitting around for a year collecting unemployment, he's had a year in which to get some retraining or sell his house and move where there is work available for his skill set.
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:37 AM
 
943 posts, read 2,900,415 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZugZub View Post
Nothing.

There's a point where an adult needs to get off their ass and take care of themselves, and not expect the taxpayer to foot the bill. If he's been sitting around for a year collecting unemployment, he's had a year in which to get some retraining or sell his house and move where there is work available for his skill set.
Sounds good in theory but there are just no jobs in many towns in America for middle aged men who have been working at the factory all their adult lives. He is not a lazy man and hated the idea of collecting unemployment.

Here are his options as he sees them:

Move out of town and walk away from his home and destroy his reputation and credit rating. Add to the number of abandoned homes in his community. He has been so proud of his home and lived there for 20 years and was so excited to be a home owner.

Continue to live in his town and keep applying at jobs he knows will not hire him.

Retraining sounds good in theory but again there are no jobs in the community except for retail and fast food. He has applied at about every employer within fifty miles. They do not want to hire a fifty year old man at McDonald's. Those jobs are set aside for kids and immigrants. Unemployment is close to 20% in Jackson MI.

What would you recommend?
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
3,562 posts, read 5,135,674 times
Reputation: 1492
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend Traveler View Post
Sounds good in theory but there are just no jobs in many towns in America for middle aged men who have been working at the factory all their adult lives. He is not a lazy man and hated the idea of collecting unemployment.

Here are his options as he sees them:

Move out of town and walk away from his home and destroy his reputation and credit rating. Add to the number of abandoned homes in his community. He has been so proud of his home and lived there for 20 years and was so excited to be a home owner.

Continue to live in his town and keep applying at jobs he knows will not hire him.

What would you recommend?
Move. If your "rep" has to take a hit in order to be able to keep providing for yourself then that's what needs to be done. Credit can be fixed in a matter of years.

You dont think his rep would take a hit if the govt had to move him somewhere?
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:47 AM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,862 posts, read 15,505,675 times
Reputation: 3583
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend Traveler View Post
What should the government do about people like him?
Um...absolutely nothing.

I know some might say this is not "empathetic" but he's had the opportunity for many years to diversify his skills and maybe go back to school to get trained on new technology or get a degree (assume he doesn't have one). Any middle aged factory worker in Michigan who didn't see this train coming down the track was just burying his head in the sand.

At some point, individuals have to take ownership and control of their own lives and destinies. We have gotten way too far away from the principles that this country was founded on, and much too close to being a society that expects and feels entitled to having someone else run their life for them.
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:53 AM
 
519 posts, read 633,193 times
Reputation: 153
Actually, the government offers tax deductions for moving expenses and job search expenses. Just this past tax year, I deducted mileage, moving expenses, and job search expenses from my taxes. This increased my tax refund because my new job was 550 miles away. Every bit helps.

The government shouldn't cut any checks to pay to move people, but those people could still get a tax break. It's perfectly legal and is clearly laid out in tax forms and software.
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:56 AM
 
943 posts, read 2,900,415 times
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If the government will not pay to relocate people like him to move he and others like him will become homeless and social services will end up paying for him anyway. Wouldn't it be better to help him get on his feet, because he wants to work!
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Old 05-22-2009, 09:00 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,068 posts, read 76,913,074 times
Reputation: 27652
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend Traveler View Post
If the government will not pay to relocate people like him to move he and others like him will become homeless and social services will end up paying for him anyway. Wouldn't it be better to help him get on his feet, because he wants to work!
Nope..you take him in. He's your family.
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Old 05-22-2009, 09:01 AM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,862 posts, read 15,505,675 times
Reputation: 3583
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend Traveler View Post
If the government will not pay to relocate people like him to move he and others like him will become homeless and social services will end up paying for him anyway. Wouldn't it be better to help him get on his feet, because he wants to work!
OK...so how much of a relo package does the government provide? What's included? What if he's still unemployed, even after relocating? Does he then have to pay the government back for the relo?

This stuff is nuts folks. The government isn't your mommy and can't provide you with everything you need. It's not the equalizer or the savior. It's purpose is to provide a military, jails, roads, schools, and a playing field that allows the private sector to build a robust economy.
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