1sunfight’s Weblog

May 23, 2010

And the Job Hunt Ends – For Now

As the job market began to accelerate and add jobs to the economy my phone began to ring for job interviews, not all of the jobs were plumb jobs, the kind you write home about, but entry level jobs that are at least a way into a company and a step onto the corporate ladder for the climb up it.  I may have taken one of them had I been offered one, just to keep a roof over my head, food on the table, and keep my car from getting repossessed , although it is questionable that some of those jobs would have accomplished that, until I could find a better job.

When it comes to many of the entry level jobs I interviewed for it left me beyond shocked at what Corporate America considers a living wage for its entry level workers and/or unskilled labor, some of it borders on modern day slavery, or at least as exploitive as those written about by Charles Dickens during the Industrial Revolution.  But, it is not just the wage that is offered for some of the jobs; it is also the level of background checking that I found appalling for sustenance jobs that offer few skills to help the low level employee better themselves for the corporate ladder climb or in the marketplace in general.  Answering phones and making phone calls for a business is vastly different than a high level security job, like an FBI agent, yet they are being treated equally in Corporate America with the amount of background checking.   Thankfully I did not have to take a job that paid $7.25 to $12.00 an hour with anal checking background check, but it has opened my eyes to the plight of the unskilled worker and the gross exploitation by Corporate America of them, even within the United States.  My experience with Corporate America in my job search has left me with the knowledge that it has an entitlement issue that is as a repugnant as those seen during the Industrial Revolution and the Plantation Economy of the pre-Civil War south, even with a wage it appears Corporate America believes they have the right to ownership of its employees.

Just as I had begun to believe I was never going to find a job and accept that my fate was going to have me crawling back to my parents begging to live with them, which is what I would have had to do given my parents really did not want to take me back in or really believed that the job market has been that austere, fate lead me to where I needed to go.

I do not remember sending this business my resume, but when I spent at least four to five hours a day searching for a job it is no wonder I do not remember where I send all of them off to, even with a job hunt folder.  But one day a week and half ago, as I was doing my routine job hunting, the phone rang.  I did not answer and let the machine get the call; no message was left, but I did get an e-mail from the same phone number.  It was for a job interview with a software firm that I accepted for the Wednesday of the following week.  That Wednesday came and I went in and interviewed for a job that I really had no idea exactly what it would be for other than a sales support analyst, which from reading other online job descriptions of the same job could mean just about anything, since none of them are the same, some are nothing more than an administrative assistant in a sales department, with others requiring wide ranging complex duties.  I went in with the attitude that I am going to present myself with what I have and what I can offer the business and if it is meant to be, then I will get the job, if not, then keep looking.

As it turned out the business I was interviewing with is a small business owned by three men, one American and two Brits, who have a niche product for universities and need someone who has a wide range skills and talent that matched my skill set and interests perfectly.  My jack of all trades approach to doing business with my interest and experience in teaching software use online and ongoing education of the product is exactly what they needed as they look to grow the business and add online training and education on to their business in order to remain competitive.  Of course, there will be other duties, I will be an administrative assistant, a marketing assistant, sales, and data entry when necessary, but the position will allow me to use all of my skills, develop others, and be on the ground floor for creating departments that may include job creation, which will make me more valuable in the marketplace in the future, or I may stay on.  My brother took a job as a mechanical engineer with a small business during Reagan’s recession and it grew from a tiny business, like the one I am in now, to employing 300 people.  Alas, his job did not pay him that much when he came on, like what I am being offered now, but is more than what Corporate America is offering many.  He says his salary did rise as he stayed on and the business grew.  He expects the same for me.  Alas, the job and owners seem to be a good fit.  I start tomorrow after not working for fifteen and a half months.

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May 15, 2010

John McCain Ad: Complete the Danged (Death Star) Fence

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April 23, 2010

Things That Chap My Hide

At the end of January 2009 I lost my job.   At first, like many people who lose their job, I did not think it would take me more than six or seven months to find another job.  As it turns out I was very, very wrong.  It is nearly fifteen months and counting that I have been without a job and it looks as though there is no end in sight, so when I read over the following I just fumed.

Two years of unemployment benefits just isn’t enough for some jobless Americans.

Though Congress has extended unemployment insurance to an unprecedented 99 weeks, the safety net is not proving sufficient for hundreds of thousands of people who say they simply cannot find a job in this weak economy.

Currently I am in the third tier of federally extended unemployment insurance that means that I have been made eligible to receive 78 weeks of it.  For some, that is a long time, for me it is too as I have been looking for work diligently for in that period and really want to work, but cannot find work.  I am bored beyond belief and have started to suffer from long bouts of depression and worthlessness.  On that note, 78 weeks is too long, on the other hand, 78 weeks of unemployment benefits is not enough.  I still do not have a job.  I cannot live very long without some kind of income, even if it is unemployment insurance, although unemployment is not covering all of my bills anyway.  It is a very good thing I had a decent amount of money saved going into this, or I would have had my car repossessed long ago.  $1,100 to $1,200 a month is grossly insufficient.

Up to a million people could find themselves with neither a paycheck nor an unemployment check by year’s end, according to preliminary estimates by advocacy group.

Of those one million, I would be one of them assuming I get the final fourth tier of federal unemployment insurance, and if I get the final 20 weeks of state unemployment benefits that I would have to apply for with the state in order to get.

“If you are subsidized to stay out of the workforce, many people will,” said Alan Reynolds, senior fellow at The Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank.

Spoken by someone who has a job in this job market, since it is not happening to them they have no way of knowing what it is really like to be unemployed today.  It is unfortunate for those of us who are unemployed that people like him influence power brokers who have the power over me to tell me if I can get more extensions.  Clearly, these people think I am lazy and do not want to work.

Even though the economy is creeping back to health, employers have not resumed hiring.

I have personally experienced seeing very few jobs available or times when I have seen next to none available.  To exacerbate the problem there are 5.5 people for every job available.  I have gone to job interviews where there are 14 people in the reception area waiting to be interviewed for one job, still others with 28 people.  I have gone to information sessions at the university I graduated from where there have been 200 people trying to get the internships available with the CDC.  Yes, I have put internships into my job search.

Others, however, argue that the reason there are so many people still out of work is because they have unemployment benefits to fall back on.  If they weren’t getting, they’d be forced to get a job.

“People think that when benefits run out, most people will still be unemployed,” Reynolds said.  But “most will accept jobs that are less than ideal shortly before benefits run out.”

The reason, Mr. Reynolds, so many people are out of work is because there are not enough jobs available.  It is not rocket science.  However, since you have a job you just do not know what it is like.  This week, as an example, I have been looking for a server or delivery job in the food and hospitality industry.  No one is hiring.  There are not even burger flipping jobs available.  In the last week I have burned up a tank of gas looking for a job only to get rejected to my face versus over the phone or via e-mail.

Though Labor Department statistics say there are 5.5 job seekers for every opening, Reynolds said there is work available if people are willing to relocate or take jobs in a different field.

I have interviewed for jobs in other states, as well, in my job hunt, and I have looked across a wide range of fields and occupations.  Tell me, Reynolds, where are these jobs that you speak of, if we the unemployed choose to take just anything anywhere?

Even if Congress does extend benefits one more time, the jobless should expect that one to be the last, said Phillip Swagel, business professor at Georgetown University and former Department chief economist under George W Bush.

It is attitudes like this that add stress to my job search in this tough job market.  Assuming I get the fourth and final federal unemployment tier I can survive through Thanksgiving, without another extension it is September or October.  If I get the final state extension I can survive until January or February of 2011.  It is the not knowing, all of the uncertainty, and the tick, tick, tick of the clock winding down that is making my life so hard.

The jobs picture is starting to brighten, Swagel said.  The use of temporary workers is up and employees’ weekly hours are up – both signs that companies should start hiring soon.

Funny, I was talking with some restaurant managers who said they are not only fully staffed, but are overstaffed.  If someone should leave the person may not be replace.  I heard similar at country clubs I have gone to.  As for temp workers, good luck with that too.  I have gone to temp agencies and have experienced employees physically turning their back on me, or tell me – as I look for work in another occupation and field –  since I have no experience anywhere in my background they will not even attempt to place me.

“We are getting close to the point where there shouldn’t be more extensions, “ Swagel said.

Shouldn’t is the operative word.  Businesses are not hiring and there is no should in that.

How Long Should We Help the Unemployed?

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April 17, 2010

Waiting For the Other Shoe To Drop

Over the course of President Obama’s presidency I have been watching the right’s reaction to having Barack Obama as the president, as their president, and it was clear from the moment that he won the general election they were not taking it well.  For a long time I have been chalking it up to many things, but mainly that the right are very bad losers, but I knew in my heart that there is more to it than that.

Since Obama won the election I have been watching the right over react, first it was with running out and buying guns and ammunition with the false fear that, “Obama is going to take our guns.”  It does not matter that he never said he wanted gun control or to take away guns from Americans, but there was a rush on guns and ammo to the point that an ammo shortage was created.

Since Obama won I have watched his former rival in the presidential contest continue her pattern of playing the victim and blaming everyone else for it.  She started her sermon “Obama is a Marxist/Terrorist/you’re a victim because of him (and later added Speakers Pelosi and Reed) and because I tell you are” in the campaign and has not stopped.  I watched her quit her governorship and launch a career based on nothing more than continuing those speeches, which is like throwing gasoline onto the fire of a very frightened and angry right wing.  She likes to use a lot of fear, and self righteous rhetoric to attack Obama with.  She likes to use violent imagery when talking about Obama and our speakers of both houses, plus the Democratic majority.  She is fueling hate and making a living at it, at the expense of Obama and more than half the people in America who voted him.

Since Obama won I have watched FOX News go on 24/7/365 days a year campaign, we are going to do whatever it takes to make Obama a one term president, even it means fabricating stories and outright lying about him.   I have watched the ant crawlers at the bottom of the screen “promoting” a special show “Obama A One Term President” for hours at a time.   I have witnessed FOX News become the Tea Party Channel.

I have watched the rise of the right visa vie the Tea Party and have listened to their use of terms like “liberty,” “freedom,” “tyrant,” “tyranny”, and other words from the American Revolution, which somehow makes them the final authority on it.  I have listened to them speak as if they are the only ones who know what freedom is and that they feel they need to “restore America to their brand of freedom” not realizing that they are contradicting themselves.  I listen to them speak for our Founding Fathers as if they are channeling them.  I listen to them warp the message and meaning of the Era of Good Feelings when myths were created about our Founding Fathers, the Enlightenment, and the Revolution that were designed to keep a new country together because we had no history.  But, unlike that time period that was steeped in nationalism, I only hear the Tea Party’s exaggerated jingoism.

Since Obama won the election I see people taking guns to Tea Party rallies, or signs that read “did not bring their gun – this time.”  I hear their calls of Marxist, of Socialist, of Fascist, of “liberal,” and I hear their hyperbolic anti-government message.

Since Obama won the election I have heard Tea Party organizers call for the hanging of a congresswoman in the state of Washington because they do not like her politics.  I have witnessed Sarah Palin become their unofficial leader and tell them to “not to retreat, reload” and put rifle crosshairs over congressional districts of Democrats who she wants to see get defeated in the mid-term elections.  I see Teabaggers deny they are not inciting violence; it is a “political revolution,” or “voting”.  I see the Tea Party trying to hijack the Republican Party and evict moderate Republicans, because they do not represent real conservative values, aka “RINOS”, people who are Republican in Name Only from the Republican Party.  I see the Tea Party trying to force their political philosophy on to a legitimate political party and send everyone who does not embrace their beliefs packing, so much for a big tent party, so much for freedom.

Since Obama won the election I have seen the Tea Party penetrate one state government, Oklahoma, wanting to start a state militia to protect themselves from the Federal government’s intrusion into a state’s sovereignty.  It was that morning not so long ago that when it all started sinking in, the over the top out of control, the far right are going over the edge.  Not only are they sending messages, intended or not, that they want violence, but wanting to start a state militia for the previously mentioned reason smacked of violent civil war, or something that over the edge and extreme because the far right lost the general election by a sound margin one night early in November of 2008 and that man and both of the houses are doing what the majority voted them into to do that night.  It began to sink in that they are unable to accept that simple truth and because of this things are going to end, and end badly.

Then it happened, and then I was reminded by former president Clinton today about:

Bill Clinton Wolf Blitzer Interview (video)

Clinton Warns Against Violent Anti-Government Attitude

Former President Bill Clinton said he sees parallels in the mood of the country now and on April 19, 1995, when the bombing of a federal building in Oklahoma City killed 168 people while he was in the White House.

“There’s the same kind of economic and social upheaval now,” the former president told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer in an interview to air on Friday on “The Situation Room.”

“Then you had the rise of extremist voices on talk radio. Here you have a billion Internet sites,” Clinton said.

And while the hard-core, anti-government radicals are still a minority, “they can communicate with each other much faster and much better than they did before. The main thing that bothered us since the time of Oklahoma City was that already there was enough use of the Internet that if you knew how to find a Web site – and not everybody even had a computer back then, but if you knew how to find it, you could learn, for example, how to make a bomb.”

“Now everybody has got a computer, Web sites are easily accessible. And you can be highly selective and spend all of your time with people that are, you know, kind of out there with you,” he continued.

Clinton said the Oklahoma City bombing – then the worst terror attack in U.S. history – was the “last in a series of very high-profile violent encounters” during the 1990s between anti-government activists and authorities.

Clinton said that the country is better protected to prevent such an attack now than it was then but when asked if the anti-government mood now is more intense than in the 1990s, Clinton said, “Now there are all of these groups, you know, saying things like the current political debate is just a prelude to civil war, all of that kind of stuff.”

In an interview with the New York Times on Friday, Clinton warned of the affect that angry political rhetoric might have on anti-government radicals like Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh, pointing to Rep. Michele Bachmann calling the Obama administration and the Democratic Congress “the gangster government” in speaking to a tax day Tea Party rally on Thursday.

“They are not gangsters,” Clinton told the newspaper. “They were elected. They are not doing anything they were not elected to do.”

Clinton said demonizing the government with incendiary language can have effects beyond just rallying a crowd.

“There can be real consequences when what you say animates people who do things you would never do,” Clinton told the newspaper – pointing out that McVeigh and his conspirators “were profoundly alienated, disconnected people who bought into this militant antigovernment line.”

But Clinton said he didn’t want to draw too tight of an analogy between then and now. And that it’s not his intent to stifle criticism of government.

“I’m not interested in gagging anybody. I actually love this political debate,” Clinton said.

“Most of the Tea Party people, though, are explicitly political. You’ve got to give that now,” he said. “Forget about whether we disagree with them or not. It’s really important to be able to criticize your government and criticize elected officials. That doesn’t bother me.”

“Most of them have been well within bounds,” Clinton also said. “And they’re harsh but limited criticism, in other words, they’re not advocating violence or encouraging other people to do it.”

“But I just think that we have to be careful,” the former president added. “We’ve been down this road on more than one occasion before. We don’t want to go down it again.”

It is like waiting for other shoe to drop.  It is like waiting for the far right to explode, only this time bigger.

Tea Party Attracts National Attention

Oklahoma Tea Parties and Lawmakers Envision Militia

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March 30, 2010

A Case of Double Standards from the High and Mighty

Filed under: Daily Observations,Palin,politics,Uncategorized — Julie P @ 12:06 am
Tags: , , ,

This afternoon after taking a nap to help me recover from the bad cold my body has been trying to fight off for the last two days, I started to read the local newspaper online.  Much to my amusement I saw an article there about Sarah Palin’s latest Facebook entry.   Palin steps up rhetoric against her detractors read the headline.  I read the article, and then decided to head over to her Facebook page where I am a registered fan to read the entry in its entirety for myself.  Of course, I am not a fan, but I registered anyway.

I read over her inflammatory entry and was suddenly stuck by how immature Sarah Palin is, especially for a woman who is going to be 46 years old in April.  I was going to leave a comment, like I had the day before where I had asked her to remove the crosshairs from the picture, or does she like being known as a domestic terrorist?  Having heard her repeatedly make the claim that Barack Obama is a terrorist I thought, what is good for the goose is good for the gander.  However, on this day I could not leave her a message like the two times I had before, or like her fans are doing today.  Clearly, I have been bad for calling her a domestic terrorist and can no longer comment on her Facebook page.  Apparently Sarah Palin can say whatever she pleases including her megalomaniac followers; after all, she and her fans are Americans with the right to free speech and an ax to grind with President Obama, Democrats, the media, and anyone who disagrees with her.  However, say anything about her, even indirectly through her Facebook page and it is curtains for you!  What I found ironic about being censored on her Facebook account is the very headline for her latest diatribe against the “the liberal media”: Warning: Subject to New Politically Correct Language Police Censorship.  She accuses others of censorship when she does it to anyone, and I mean anyone, who is critical of her!

I have one thing to say to you, Sarah Palin, grow up little girl.  Your blatant immaturity and hypocrisy is stinking up the place.

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March 29, 2010

All the President’s Pens

Filed under: Daily Observations,politics,Uncategorized — Julie P @ 1:16 pm
Tags: ,

I have always wondered why all of those pen were used while singing bills into law.  I am sure others may have been wondering the same thing.  Here is an explanation.

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March 28, 2010

The Poor Loser Party

It has been a while since I wrote and a lot has happened, both politically and personally. There have been times when I have had a lot to say about current events, clearly healthcare reform certainly has been, and will continue to be, controversial with plenty to write about. However, I predict that over the years, there will be volumes written on it, both favorable and unfavorable. I am going to wait until all of the legal proceedings have finished and a ruling made, probably by the United States Supreme Court, before I say much on the subject beyond I think some are overreacting. Unfortunately, healthcare reform has come to this. That said, I am going to rename the GOP, Grand Old Party, the PLP, Poor Losers Party. It is unfortunate that American politics has degenerated to us against them, but it has and it started the night Barack Obama won the presidential election. The PLP has been nothing more than obstructionists and, I predict, will be for the remainder of President Obama’s first term in office. The PLP have not just been obstructionists about healthcare reform, it includes the PLP either blocking or doing nothing for the seventy seven high level federal appointments that President Obama needs to make and soon. When former president Bush was this far into his first term, he only had five more federal appointments to make. The PLP is doing their best to make doing the people’s business as difficult as possible.

Since I last wrote, Sarah Palin continues her bitter rhetoric. Palin is nothing more than spiteful agitator. She does not bring anything that is substantive to American politics. She thrives on spewing hate and dividing Americans. She is not the patriot she claims to be, she is anything but. In fact, she proves her critics right when it her comes to her intelligence, or lack thereof. Her Facebook account flaunts rifle crosshairs over 20 Democratic Congressional Districts of Democratic Congressmen, or women, she wants to see lose their jobs. Once healthcare reform passed she also tweeted, “Don’t retreat, reload.”  That is not very bright.

Sarah Palin’s  defense has been that she is not doing that over their homes and that she meant the latter was to have a revolution at the ballot box. It was about voting. Okay, Sarah, let me explain this to you. I promise to type slowly since it is blatantly obvious you cannot think quickly, or at all. Anyone who is in elected office has to live in the district they represent. In Georgia congressional districts have been gerrymandered, so an elected official is living in the congressional district they were elected to. I remember one instance where the district could not be gerrymandered enough to constitutionally have the person living in the district. The person retired instead of move. Also elected officials have offices in the districts they were elected to represent. The congress people you put in your rifle crosshairs can be easily found.  Furthermore, no one other than you and your brainwashed minions believe your position that you “meant voting”, like the Tea Party member in Washington State “knew” she meant voting when she called for the hanging of her Democratic congresswoman. Yes, it is contagious on the right, stupidity. “We all know” what you really mean. “We all know” your intentions. Let us overlook that that one called for murder and you, Sarah, are inciting violence, even though you protest otherwise and blame the “lamestream” media. Really, Sarah, Rush Limbaugh coined that phrase, so could you at least put forth some sort of effort with coining a phrase of your own? Can you also quit blaming everyone for calling you out on your behavior? You tweeted that, that picture is on your Facebook page, and your name is on both, you therefore are responsible for it. Finally, Sarah, and I will type very slowly here, you forget your social status, you are a former vice presidential candidate for the highest office in the land, a former governor of Alaska, an influential author, and a leader in the Tea Party and in the PLP (GOP).  Sarah, what you did for someone of your status is unconscionable, and beyond the pale of stupidity. It is not just your status, but if something bad does happen to any of these Democrats it will come back to you.   Sarah, again very slowly, not everything is protected free speech. What you said is really stupid and only proves that you are stupid. And there are people who want you to run for the White House!?! It really goes to show that some Americans really are stupid.

One final thing, Sarah, you think your words do not have influence? This picture was taken at the last Tea Party rally. I bet it makes you proud.

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March 23, 2010

President Barack Obama Signs Health Care Bill Into Law

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March 15, 2010

Health Insurance Rate Hikes

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March 8, 2010

Welcome to the Twilight Zone

Right after Sarah Palin gave her key note speech at the first annual Tea Party Convention she was lambasted in the media, blogs, and other outlets for having notes on her hand after criticizing President Barack Obama for using Teleprompters early on her key note address to the convention.  True to her nature, the following two speeches she was to give reporters were not allowed to film or record her speech.   Sarah Palin likes to criticize, but she cannot take it.  She likes to play the role of the victim, yet time and time again she only exposes her hypocrisy.

What Sarah Palin did not consider when she made her media blackout is that people have cell phones and that many have video recorders in them.  It was because of this we learned the real why she did not want to be videotaped or have audio taped, besides her being a hypocrite; we were reminded how frightening her ideology is influenced by her Pentecostal roots.  Her views are extreme, are divorced from reality, and frankly, out there.  Sarah Palin is a religious crackpot.

Sarah Palin was recorded saying the following:

Isaiah 49:16 reads: “See, I have engraved on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me.”

“Hey, if was good enough for God, scribbling on the palm of his hand, it’s good enough for me, for us.  He says, in that passage he says, I wrote your name on the palm of my hand to remember you.  And I’m like OK, I’m in good company,” Palin said to laughter.

You know, Sarah and the Republicans, I have one thing to ask you.  So how is that crackpot Sarah-ey Palin-ey thing going for ya? This is what the right wing religious nuts want in the White House and then has the nerve to criticize the president?  People you live in glass houses should not throw stones.

Sarah Palin on Sean Hannity defending herself after the Tea Party Convention:

Sarah Palin using a teleprompter:

Sarah Palin talking about getting blessed by the visiting witch hunter and praising him:

Yup, Sarah Palin and the religious religious far right live in the twilight zone and throw stones.

Palin On Her Palm Notes: God Did It Too (Video)

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