Andy Kroll’s The Face of An American Lost Generation | TomDispatch


Sign for derelict business, Texas panhandle


Andy’s Story link: The Face of An American Lost Generation | TomDispatch.

Above is the link to the great story by Andy Kroll about long-term unemployment published in TomDispatch as well as on HuffPo.

His story is more comprehensive than the usual thing I’m reading these days. Also interesting that the industry in question, RV manufacture, isn’t something that we’re importing from China. Perhaps the glory days of this particular consumerist orgy are behind us? I’m not sure I think that’s a bad thing, but I’m in the same boat as the man profiled here. Different part of the country and different background, but also without work – or should I say, a work provided by others, a traditional job.

Particularly scary is this paragraph from Andy’s piece:

“So who are these unfortunate or unlucky people? Long-term unemployment, research shows, doesn’t discriminate: no age, race, ethnicity, or educational level is immune. According to federal data, however, the hardest hit when it comes to long-term unemployment are older workers — middle aged and beyond, folks like Rick Rembold who can see retirement on the horizon but planned on another decade or more of work. Given the increasing claims of age discrimination in this recession, older Americans suffering longer bouts of joblessness may not in itself be so surprising. That education seemingly works against anyone in this older cohort is. Nearly half of the long-term unemployed who are 45 or older have “some college,” a bachelor’s degree, or more. By contrast, those with no education at all make up just 15% of this older category. In other words, if you’re older and well educated, the outlook is truly grim.”

I’ve decided I shouldn’t read these gloom and doom pronouncements, though it’s hard, I’m drawn to them kind of like a moth to a flame. There was another great and similar story in the LA Times yesterday, a Steve Lopez piece.

Still, I think the best advice I’ve heard since I began this journey on Friday, November 13, 2009, is at a seminar where a wonderful woman said that “there were no jobs, so I had to invent one for myself.” I’m still in the place where I think I can do this. That, in itself, is pretty American, right?


~ by jimarnoldla on October 7, 2010.

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