Saturday, January 1, 2011


Greetings good citizen,

As we are all well aware, the ‘4th Estate’ has long since been subverted in the service of the oligarchs against the common individual.

While this article has an end of last year date attached to it, it actually didn’t see ‘daylight’ until the first day of the new year, making it a contender for the first ‘distorted’ news item of 2011.

Axiomatically, it is not possible to make rational decisions without accurate information.

Thus I have identified the ‘squelching’ of the lying media as ‘job one’ on the road to a sustainable society.

If reporters are unable to recognize, much less publish the truth, they become the useless pawns of those who would ‘massage’ reality for their own benefit.

If ‘silencing’ the propaganda means burning the corporate owned media to the ground then so be it.

This is truly a better to die on your feet than serve on your knees matter.

They’ve already made the decision that they’d rather die on their feet, we need only accommodate that decision.

Lie number one is the denial that ‘class war’ even exists!

So we have stories like this which ‘distort’ (severely) the reality of the situation at hand.

Follow the link and read the story through, then compare it with the stories you’ve heard about your friends loved ones travails (or even your own story in more than a few cases.)

Let’s begin with the headline:

Career Shift Often Means Drop in Living Standards

Well, Bubba, a ‘career shift’ when you’re 18 is one hell of a lot different than a career shift when your 60! Losing a minimum wage job is inconsequential if you are able to replace it at identical wages, something a typical teenager does regularly.

The bottom of the heap is still the bottom of the heap but is that the case for your typical 60 year-old female?

Let us not ‘shoot the messenger’ here in our efforts to expose the ‘hypocrisy’ of the corporate owned media message that things ‘aren’t so bad’.

Reporters need paychecks too.

Let’s start with some Ivory Tower psycho-babble:

A new study of American workers displaced by the recession sheds light on the sacrifices a large number have made to find work. Many, it turns out, had to switch careers and significantly reduce their living standards.

“In many cases, these people are not very happy,” said Cliff Zukin, professor of public policy and political science at Rutgers University and one of the authors of the study. “They’re the winners who got new jobs, but they’re not really what they want, and not where they want to be.”

Ah yes, would that it were a ‘perfect world’ and our dream jobs were simply right there for the asking! All one need do is pick up that sow’s ear and whamo, turn it into the silk purse you always wanted!

Which is to point out that the ‘primary problem’ here is not that of someone who worked their whole life in a certain field only to be ‘downsized’ as they approached retirement. No that’s not it at all! The primary problem here is ‘expectations’, one of champagne tastes on a beer budget! But wait, the psycho-babble continues!

The study, conducted by the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers, was based on a survey of Americans around the country who were unemployed as of August 2009 and re-interviewed about their job status twice over the next 15 months.

As of November 2010, only about one-third had found replacement jobs, either as full-time workers (26 percent) or as part-time workers not wanting a full-time job (8 percent).

And of those who successfully found work, 41 percent had switched into a new career or field.

Some of these may have been workers who retrained for new fields they wished to enter, but many seem to have taken their new jobs out of desperation. Only a minority of those displaced workers changing careers — 22 percent — said they had taken a class or a training course before finding their new job.

The ‘problem’ with Ivory Tower studies is they aren’t, er, ‘realistic’. Where do you suppose the ‘desperation’ these job seekers felt came from? Could it have been the overwhelming desire to live indoors and to eat regularly?

More, er, ‘interesting’ is how only 22% of these displaced people admitted to being ‘desperate’. How ‘accurate’ a figure do you think that statistic is?

Do you suspect somebody pulled this number out of their ass to support the ‘it’s not so bad’ meme they’d have you believe?

For THAT is the true goal of this article. To convince you that things ‘aren’t that bad’. Once we get to the ‘not particularly typical’ victim of downsizing, all we see is ‘happy talk’:

“Look, I am really happy to have a job — that’s the main thing,” said Sue Bires, 60, who was laid off from a job managing homeowners’ associations in Orlando, Fla., in September 2008. She initially had another job lined up with a different realty association in Orlando, but when that fell through, she moved to Austin, Tex., to stay with a friend. She filed for bankruptcy and took a job at a call center.

But she now earns $30,000, far below the $45,000 she was paid when she was managing properties.

“It’s competitive out there, even for the lower paying jobs, especially when you’re 60 looking for a job in a young town,” Ms. Bires said. “So I’m grateful to have a job where the people are nice and I have a little bit of flexibility in my hours. That’s especially important now, since retirement is looking like a long way off.

Like Ms. Bires, most of those forced to switch careers generally seemed to downgrade their job status.

Geez, imagine that! Most people FORCED to switch careers FIVE FUCKING YEARS SHORT OF REACHING RETIREMENT, ‘seemed to’ downgrade their ‘job status!

Nothing to see here good citizen. How much you want to bet they’re using the term ‘call center’ as a disguise for what it really is, a collection agency?

Yes, there’s no ‘story’ here. This ‘scrappy’ woman took the bull by the horns and landed a job, doing something few people are willing to do, but hey, it’s money!

Nearly 7 in 10 of the survey’s respondents who took jobs in new fields say they had to take a cut in pay, compared with just 45 percent of workers who successfully found work in their original field.

Of all the newly re-employed tracked by the Heldrich Center, 29 percent took a reduction in fringe benefits in their new job. Again, those switching careers had to sacrifice more: Nearly half of these workers (46 percent) suffered a benefits cut, compared with just 29 percent who stayed in the same career.

Wait a minute Slim, a fucking THIRD of people that DIDN’T change careers fields STILL SUFFERED a cut in benefits?

But hey, it’s only a third! Hell, things ‘aren’t so bad’ after all, are they?

Many of those who found work in a different field say they have come to terms with the limited opportunities, but they are reluctant to see their new job as a calling.

“I wouldn’t go so far as to say I’ve switched careers, since I’m not exactly sure this is a career, but I’m definitely doing something different,” said Adam Kowal, 30, of Royal Oak, Mich.

Interesting that we’d get a peek at the situation out in the heart of the ‘economic desert’, even if we have no clue what Adam is doing for cash…knocking down houses perhaps?

One can appreciate his ‘confusion’ over whether or not his current ‘situation’ is actually a ‘career’.

After being laid off from a job as a quality control supervisor at a department store warehouse and losing his house, he moved his family across the state to live with his mother. Unable to find similar work, he initially took a “soul-sucking” temporary job on an assembly line making auto parts, and is now working in a kitchen at a high school.

His hourly wage has fallen from $15 an hour at the warehouse to $10.50 an hour washing dishes and preparing food, and he has gone from having health insurance coverage for his whole family to no benefits. He, his pregnant wife and their 4-year-old son are now on Medicaid.

“I’d love to go back to what I was doing,” he said, or even into what he described as his true passion, full-time screenwriting. “But when I talk with the unemployment office here in Michigan, they tell me the chances of going back and using the same skill set I had before are pretty farfetched.”

Not exactly ‘encouraging’ if you ask me but the message is still that the people in the article are ‘getting by’.

Do you see a single condemnation of these heartless (unidentified) corporations? Were either tasked for tossing these individuals out in the street?

Read it through again…not one is there?

Worse, there isn’t a single mention of the hundred of thousands who are living in their cars (if they’re lucky enough to still have them) or in some relative’s unfinished basement or worse, locked inside a homeless shelter with people who should be institutionalized every night!

Which is to say, good citizen, that things ARE INDEED much worse than this ‘feel good’ article would have you believe.

How ‘typical’ do you think the stories of these two people are in light of over five million homes being foreclosed upon over the past twelve months?

Did they search ‘far and wide’ to unearth these ‘study participants’ or were these two stories ‘cherry picked’? (Because if this is ‘as good as it gets’ Bubba, we gots trouble!)

I will once again reiterate that it is NOT my intent to tell you WHAT to think (that’s the fucking Republican’s job), it IS my goal to give you something to think about!

Thanks for letting me inside your head,


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