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Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:39 AM

Unemployable At 50 Fate Of Present And Future Workers

Forget working until you are 70 in any kind of meaningful job as you age. The CEO and corporate culture looks at 50 as the unemployable age in the new age economy. In Logan's Run people were supposed to be trashed at 30. Today your corporate CEO will trash you by 50 because a of new business attitude that has shred the social contract.

Fifty somethings are already finding out in great numbers what being unemployable means. In the past by the time you reached 50 in most jobs you had maximum vacation and numerous benefits for being a senior employee. Today you are considered a liability and drag on the company at a time when you need higher income for your retirement and to support getting your kids started in life with a good education.

Now corporations and CEO's are saying that you should wait until 70 or longer to get your Social Security and Medicare. And they REALLY WANT TO ABOLISH THAT AS WELL. So senior workers will face 20 years of part time and minimum wage jobs if they can get any job at all. And if you are disabled or ill you are royally screwed if you CAN'T WORK. Any sensible person knows that you cannot save for retirement at today's wages when pay is essentially capped at 30K. And you cannot build a future when most jobs are being reduced to part time, temporary, seasonal and less in the new Reagan revolution economy.

By the time the GOP and its allies have their way only 30% or less of the job market will support a person or family and 70% of the work force will be stuck in the "service economy". What you are seeing in this recovery is what the GOP and Reagan has wrought since 1980. Yet we still elect them. Obama himself cannot change this corporate model. Only the business community and corporations can. And only government policy can force them. FDR was right and knew what he was doing.

Look at the handwriting on the wall. THE CONVERSATION has to change and the business community has be to be challenged to change its ways and its attitude that only gets worse by the day. The prevalent anti union and anti labor and anti government attitude has given us this SUICIDAL situation.

I worked in the DOL for 24 years and could see what was coming. I am really puzzled at why the American worker embraced all of this mayhem. Now the next generation seems to be doomed to a life of low wages and virtual poverty.




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Reply Unemployable At 50 Fate Of Present And Future Workers (Original post)
TheMastersNemesis Jan 2013 OP
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #1
Recursion Jan 2013 #4
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #9
tjwash Jan 2013 #13
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #14
Downwinder Jan 2013 #36
xtraxritical Jan 2013 #77
CrispyQ Jan 2013 #33
leftieNanner Jan 2013 #139
Sherman A1 Jan 2013 #165
leftieNanner Jan 2013 #185
Sherman A1 Jan 2013 #207
leftieNanner Jan 2013 #211
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #179
leftieNanner Jan 2013 #184
duffyduff Jan 2013 #37
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #74
rtassi Jan 2013 #62
Nay Jan 2013 #105
blackspade Jan 2013 #115
davidwparker Jan 2013 #117
Sherman A1 Jan 2013 #164
AnnieK401 Jan 2013 #166
1StrongBlackMan Jan 2013 #171
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #178
brush Jan 2013 #27
harun Jan 2013 #56
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #71
grahamhgreen Jan 2013 #146
brutus smith Jan 2013 #2
Recursion Jan 2013 #3
socialindependocrat Jan 2013 #12
HuskiesHowls Jan 2013 #67
socialindependocrat Jan 2013 #86
Bette Noir Jan 2013 #150
duffyduff Jan 2013 #41
Bennyboy Jan 2013 #5
chervilant Jan 2013 #20
lunasun Jan 2013 #25
SheilaT Jan 2013 #45
chervilant Jan 2013 #123
Doc Holliday Jan 2013 #39
Downwinder Jan 2013 #40
kestrel91316 Jan 2013 #128
duffyduff Jan 2013 #48
Curmudgeoness Jan 2013 #111
SunSeeker Jan 2013 #22
tapermaker Jan 2013 #51
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Duer 157099 Jan 2013 #84
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GoCubsGo Jan 2013 #98
freshwest Jan 2013 #109
closeupready Jan 2013 #6
Fumesucker Jan 2013 #7
TheMastersNemesis Jan 2013 #8
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Doctor_J Jan 2013 #10
Eleanors38 Jan 2013 #50
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ProfessionalLeftist Jan 2013 #15
99Forever Jan 2013 #16
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coalition_unwilling Jan 2013 #119
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TheMastersNemesis Jan 2013 #88
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area51 Jan 2013 #167
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gkhouston Jan 2013 #118
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LongTomH Jan 2013 #153
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mother earth Jan 2013 #114
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Tab Jan 2013 #125
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kcass1954 Jan 2013 #181
alarimer Jan 2013 #138
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duffyduff Jan 2013 #191
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lexw Jan 2013 #160
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reverend_tim Jan 2013 #163
Wednesdays Jan 2013 #169
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LittleGirl Jan 2013 #174
valerief Jan 2013 #176
Doctor_J Jan 2013 #180
FreeJoe Jan 2013 #186
BlueCheese Jan 2013 #203
TheMastersNemesis Jan 2013 #205
duffyduff Jan 2013 #206
TheMastersNemesis Jan 2013 #208

Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:47 AM

1. Perfect argument for lowering the Medicare & SS age to 50

another executive order. it will start a locomotive that will be unstopable. By 2020 we would have SP.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:55 AM

4. GMTA

Unemployment would drop precipitously.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #4)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:16 AM

9. A lot of 50 year olds would love to be entrepeneurs too

After 25 years as wage slaves, they'd love to own a hardware store, give fishing tours, teach at the local JuCo, etc. If they had health care and a small SS stipend, they could do these things.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:26 AM

13. Yes!

Absolutely brilliant Doc!

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Response to tjwash (Reply #13)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:27 AM

14. Not that brilliant

every other civilized nation the world thinks of it as common knowledge. Only in GlenBeckistan is this considered inspired thinking.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #14)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:19 PM

36. Look at how many retired military take up new occupations.

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Response to Downwinder (Reply #36)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:32 PM

77. The military and it's personnel are the biggest "welfare queens".

 

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:09 PM

33. That is exactly where my husband is at.

One decent paying IT job with benefits could be available for someone younger, if only he could get SS & medicare now.

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Response to CrispyQ (Reply #33)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:01 PM

139. My Husband is 62 and being pushed by his employer

to work longer and harder for less money. He had his salary reduced by 10% 5 years ago and has had no raises since. He now has to be 80% utilized (which means, if you take out vacation and holidays, 110%). He has five weeks out of town in a row - three of them without coming home at all. He had a heart attack (stressful job, ya think?) in 2009 so he can't quit because of the health insurance issue. Corporations will continue to abuse workers at will. Don't see any options until manufacturing comes back to this country and workers are in demand again. Let's hope he's not dead by then.

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Response to leftieNanner (Reply #139)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 04:25 AM

165. Agreed

well said and welcome to DU

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #165)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 01:11 PM

185. Thanks Sherman A1

I've been enjoying reading DU for a long time. Just started posting. I've decided that the loony right have had their turn. It's time for the Progressives in America to run things for a while.

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Response to leftieNanner (Reply #185)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:29 PM

207. We can hope you are right about the right.

That it is no longer their turn, but I fear they will find a way to re-emerge after some cosmetic alterations to their presentation.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #207)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 02:00 PM

211. Well, the half-term governor

from Alaska was fired from Fox, so that's a step in the right direction.

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Response to leftieNanner (Reply #139)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:56 AM

179. Would you survive if he could retire right now (with SS & Medicare)?

that should be the point of the current discussion. We as a country to should be pushing hard for providing the means for those 55 and up (or 50 and up) to get out of situations like yours. He's been working for 40 years, and has earned better treatment than more work for less pay.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #179)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 01:08 PM

184. Yes, we could

survive on SS & (more importantly) medicare. We downsized and own our home without a mortgage. Drive two very old cars (one with over 300K miles). Two kids in college, but we saved for that. I'm so worried that he will have another heart attack.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:21 PM

37. They won't if there is no demand for goods and services

It also takes a second income stream to do it (as in a working spouse) because self-employed people bear all of the risk. Many of us are also not inclined to work for ourselves.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #37)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:21 PM

74. I didn't say all of them

and I didn't say it would be easy. But it's true that many would leave their hideous jobs if they had SS and Medical insurance. And if you had SS and Medicare, a great deal of the risk would be removed.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:59 PM

62. Try starting and owning a business like that now ..

if that seems like an answer to you ... Fishing tours, hardware stores, really? ... I'm 58, me and the bank own a National historic landmark sailing vessel offering cruises in Maine ... the only reason I am still in business is that the bank is afraid to take her back ... a far as the local family owned Hardware store in our town ... they are in the death rattle as well ... It takes capital to start any business ... and the costs associated to operate relative to income can be devastating in an economy like this one ... to say nothing of the cost and intrusion by the USCG local harbor ordinances, insurance, EPA and equipment, to start that little fishing tour operation ... No wage slave will ever get close to affording what appears to be from your view a life made possible by the mere possession of a health care plan and ss stipend ...

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Response to rtassi (Reply #62)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 05:35 PM

105. Gotta agree here. No one has the money to start any kind of business that has much of a

chance to thrive and support a family. Some easy-to-start businesses (lawn care, roofing, etc.) are physically beyond the capabilities of many 50+ people. And owning a hardware store? Got a million dollars plus the ability to borrow a couple million more? No? Then you aren't going to be owning a hardware store. And even if you could, they are going belly up by the dozen every month. Same with restaurants, franchises of all kinds.

Only if you have arcane knowledge or skills can you start up your own one-man business, and only if the startup costs are very low. Sonny Nay, an electrician, runs his own repair business but it's touch and go every month. And he REALLY knows what he's doing, plus we own the house he lives in and can charge him low rent. He is VERY busy, though, and is starting to make some real money, I can hardly wait for him to be able to get some kind of health insurance he can afford -- cuz right now the shit is unaffordable.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:02 PM

115. I sure would.

I only have 4 years to go, and that has a huge amount of appeal to me.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:29 PM

117. +1

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 04:24 AM

164. Precisely

It would increase employment as seniors who are secure in their healthcare & expenses can then also do volunteer work at museums, hospitals, libraries, parks, schools, animal shelters, senior facilities & alike to add value and their experience to our society.

I believe given the opportunity I would do so, however that option is not available so off to work.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 05:50 AM

166. Yeah, I tried that at 50

Luckily I only lost maybe 40K. There are people who lose everything they have trying to start a business. I hear 9 out of 10 businesses fail within the first few years. Or is it 4 out of 5. Either way, it's the vast majority and sorry but the odds are very much against you (at least in this country.) Sorry to rain on anyone's parade. and of course there are those that succeed (the 1%) but people need to realize what they are up against. Don't know if it's easier in some other countries.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #9)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 10:09 AM

171. LOL ...

Not at you; but rather, the "it can't/shouldn't be done because some will fail" comments that follow ... I am 51 yrs old, and would love to have the chance to fail at the small business that I have started, but don't have the time to grow because of my healthcare insurance providing real job. And of my peers, I know several others in the same position.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #171)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:53 AM

178. Yeah, I think I misstated my point

I didn't mean that people want to risk their life savings at age 50. But those who live a simple life, if they had SS and health care, might be able to, say, work 3 8-hr shifts at the golf course per week and spend the other two week days with their grand kids, for example. Not entrepenuerial, but sort of a semi-retirement. It would alleviate the necessity for many early golden-agers to stay in job they hate. Try something new (not necessarily risky). I was able to do such a thing because of some savings and a scale-back in my life style once the kids were grown. Medicare for me would make things more comfortable obviously (I'm 55).

This move by scum like Blankfein to require wage slaves to work to their graves should be soundly ridiculed by the Dems. Good politics = good morals = good governance.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:00 PM

27. And that f__king Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs . . .

. . . who just got his bonus raised 90% to 13.3 million (just his bonus,mind you) says that we have to raise the age to qualify for Social Security to 70. What a bastard. What is someone to do when they lay you off in your fifties, even if you have something saved? From 50 to 70 is a long time to go with maybe kids in college, a mortgage, medical needs. These people are setting the country up for violent upheaval because at some point enough is going to be enough and people are not going to live forever in deprivation.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:52 PM

56. Dem's should all be advocating this.

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Response to harun (Reply #56)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:18 PM

71. The Dems of 2 generations ago would have been

But they're out of politics altogether. The current Dems are as odious as the old Repukes, and only get votes because the current Repukes are barely human.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:33 PM

146. Capital idea!

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:47 AM

2. Reality

You are so right about this. Instead of raising the age to 70, they should lower it to 60.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:54 AM

3. Great! Start Medicare and SS at 50. Isn't that the point of technology?

Isn't the point of technology that we don't all have to work as much? This sounds like great news.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:24 AM

12. Employee benefits are now going backward

Re: Your question on tech and work less.

I was in a group trying to identify what the future workplace would look like. I thought that the natural progression would be toward a 4 day work week - Someone said, 4 - 10hr days, no problem. I said, No, 4 - 8hr days. People went nuts. They wouldn't even entertain a discussion of the idea.

Corporate leaders have determined that the "workers" are not in a bargaining position. "You are lucky you have a job" is pounded into people's heads over and over. They have held our salaries down for the past 30 years and instead of reinvesting back inti the business they increase their own salaries and bonuses.

Now , people have come to the frightening conclusion that they need to save at a faster pace or they will never be able to retire - They will just die at their desk one day. So people take what discretionary income they have available and put it towards retirement instead of spending it - Thus the slow economic recovery.

The middle class used to spend every dime they had and then spend more on credit. Now, they don't to save for retirement - With what little they have left after all the day-to-dat expenses have increased by 25-60%. We're talking about food 30%, gas 110%, heating oil 300% (even heating oil is more expensive than gasoline and it's requires less energy to manufacture), my electric got deregulated and it jumped 65% the next year. So, people who used to have $500 discretionary income now have $100 or less.

Warren Buffet is one of the few who realizes that unless we get the middle class employed and back in the spending mood that this country will be in the crapper for a very long time.

Look at the recovery of the stock market and who did the money go to? It went to the people who already have all the money.

And all these states enacting right-to-work laws are not helping the situation. The American people are being whipped into submission to the detriment of the country.

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Response to socialindependocrat (Reply #12)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:15 PM

67. Gee, I think that's why unions were formed....

These words of yours:

"Corporate leaders have determined that the "workers" are not in a bargaining position."

Have been used before. Henry C. Frick was general manager of Andrew Carnegie's Homestead steel plant in 1892.

"...On June 25th, Frick announced he would no longer negotiate with the union; now he would only deal with workers individually. "... American Experience, Andrew Carnegie, The Homestead Strike
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/carnegie/peopleevents/pande04.html

That's what happens when unions are broken, when people no longer see the need for joining the unions, and paying their dues.

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Response to HuskiesHowls (Reply #67)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:04 PM

86. Also, the abuse of "exempt employee" status

Also, the corporations are declaring lower level employees as being "exempt" from overtime pay. Supposedly these employees are paid an extra amount in order to compensate them for any time they need to work in excess of 40hrs/week.

Now, especially with the Information Tech people they are being declared "exempt" and then are worked for long hours and required to do "transparent upgrades to the system" which may require that they work thru the night in order to accomplish the task. These people are really being abused.

So we go from working 16 hours a day to working 8 and then being declared to be "exempt" from overtime and back to working 16 hours a day. Now, this isn't every day but the IT people are always answering questions and getting people out of trouble with their computers and they carry their cell phones and are "on call" around the clock in some instances.

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Response to socialindependocrat (Reply #86)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:44 PM

150. You're telling the truth.

Hubby's old employer (before they laid him off) used to work him 24-hour shifts on holiday weekends.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:30 PM

41. Technology has NOTHING to do with this dire situation

This is all about trade policies which have SHAFTED the American people.

What is needed is a complete overhaul of the politicians in Washington in BOTH political parties.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:02 AM

5. This is my story exactly (57)

 

Oh for a while I thought I could get a job. Filled out about 1000 apps, had over 60 different resumes on computer for any kind of job that came along. From management to delivery driver.

Finally, after changing cities, one prospective employer told me the truth. he told me he would never hire me due to my age. I said well that is discrimination but he told me that the data to back it up and if you have that it is not discrimination. And he is right. I would never hire me. I got health problems a plenty and probably would file a workers comp case or a disability claim.

I know no over 50 males that have jobs right now that are not in unions or work for the State or the Gov't. Us former construction dogs, who have killed our bodies forever are shit out of luck.

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:49 AM

20. I am 57, and was fired

from a job as a caseworker for DCFS, a job for which I am imminently qualified. The man who fired me cobbled together two pages of insupportable allegations to justify his spiteful and malicious actions--he fired me the day before our Christmas break.

As a new hire, I am disallowed from filing a grievance, another of the dire consequences of living in a "right-to-work" state.

I remain hopeful that the director will place my rebuttal and supporting documents in my permanent file, so that his mendacity does not stand unaddressed.

I find it difficult to explain to prospective employers that I have just been fired...

Any suggestions?

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Response to chervilant (Reply #20)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:56 AM

25. If you were a new hire and not working there very long do not include it on your resume

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Response to lunasun (Reply #25)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:32 PM

45. Agree.

Four years ago, at age 60, I was fired twice for the very first time in my life. Once after two and a half days at an art gallery. The reason given was, and I quote, "Unbridled enthusiasm." Really.

Less than two months later I was fired from a legal secretary job at a law firm, basically for incompetence. Needless to say, neither of the jobs ever showed up on a subsequent resume.

Oh. And jobs are out there for older workers. They're just entry level, non career positions. I had been a stay at home mom for over 25 years, and that turned out to be completely a non-issue when I finally re-entered the workforce. But I wasn't trying to return to a career of any kind, just trying to find work.

For someone trying to replace a better job, it's s different world.

What do I do now? I work the information desk at my local hospital. Excellent benefits, decent pay considering what I'm doing. And I probably will stay in the job until I'm 70, so you can't have it.

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Response to SheilaT (Reply #45)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:08 PM

123. Thanks!

I appreciate your positive post. I am a fix-it kinda gal, so I'm already looking for a job where I can continue to do advocacy.

I have been encouraged by a higher level director to send copies of the diatribe and my rebuttal so that my rebuttal and supporting documents will become a part of my permanent file. I may talk to the Labor Board and to an attorney.

If the higher ups can peruse these documents and do nothing to address this man's spiteful mendacity, then I will count myself lucky to have escaped relatively unscathed.

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Response to chervilant (Reply #20)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:24 PM

39. If you were

"let go" during a probationary period (you said you were a 'new hire'), there's probably not much you can do.


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Response to chervilant (Reply #20)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:26 PM

40. Time to get creative. If his falsehoods follow you, "defamation of character?"

Last edited Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:10 PM - Edit history (1)

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Response to Downwinder (Reply #40)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:40 PM

128. "defamation"

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Response to chervilant (Reply #20)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:38 PM

48. My "union" in my RTW state actively sabotaged me

They didn't tell me of my rights to file an EEOC or DOL claim or anything I could do civilly. The "due process" hearing was a total sham and a waste of time.

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Response to chervilant (Reply #20)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 06:41 PM

111. I have not been looking for a new job in over ten years, but

I have used the same resume format for much of my life (since I often got bored with a job within a year or two so had way too many jobs to list, and that would have looked terrible for me). My resume lists skills and accomplishments instead of just a list of former employers. (Example: I have worked as a bookkeeper for 20 years, at all levels up to and including preparation and interpretation of financial statements. I have accounting experience in a CPA firm, manufacturing, retail, service industries, and auto sales.....) This way I can let them know my experience without listing all the places and dates. At an interview, or on an application that you may have to complete, I just leave out any position that I was not working at for long.

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:51 AM

22. I'm so sorry, Bennyboy.

You've given your body to building this nation and now that your body is worn out, you're just being thrown away. You should have been able to start collecting SS and medicare 2 years ago. That stability and healthcare could have given you the foundation to start a new chapter in your life, maybe strike out on your own doing cabinetry, etc. It would have been a win-win for you and the country. Instead, it's a lose-lose. I hope the implementation of the ACA exchanges next year gives you more options.

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:43 PM

51. It may seem that way, that we`re shit out of luck

but I am a 54 yr old former construction dog.I lost my work with a longtime employer in 2007. I was 48 yrs old with a highschool education and no prospects for being rehired. I lost my home to forclosure and was heading towards homeless. My mother helped out by letting me live in a mobile home she owned. She asked that when i got on my feet to help pay the site payments.I looked for a while but got no offers. I had been an avid flyfisherman and had collected a respectable collection of old bamboo fly rods I started selling them off on ebay to help live . I had over the years developed the skills of the hobby and decided i was going to make a website(www.stonerodco.com) and begin a business in making and repairing new and antique bamboo flyrods .It`s been 6 yrs now , and i have clients from all over the globe. I made a profit my first year of 30,000 dollars and it has consistantly grown since then to around 50,000.I no longer have to get up each day and work in whatever weather comes that day. I havent lifted anything over 50 lbs since 2007 for work. I plan on getting my healthcare next yr. when the exchanges are in place . I have been without ins. for the last 15 yrs.. I am able to support myself and have started to pay my mother for the mobile home and the site payments. My story is one way to go out on your own terms.We all are interested in something ,have some hobby or knowledge gained over the years we can use to free ourselves from the rat race of being an employee.If you cant rely on the system to work for you , take a chance on yourself as a boss . I highly recommend it .

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Response to tapermaker (Reply #51)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:57 PM

58. Not everybody is inclined or capable to do that

"Self employment" is not a valid solution for the majority of people when the problem with the economy is lack of demand for goods and services because few people have any money to spend.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #58)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:07 PM

64. I agree that the system is broke but

My business is mostly enjoyed by middleaged men and women of means. A hobby or daliance for rich people with a lot of spare time and money.Even at the worst of the recession I had consistent work. If i was starting out on a new business today i would look for areas in the economy that are not as adversly effected by the monkey business the republicans throw out there.One thing that i have noticed is if you make something of value from your own hand here in america ,People with money appreciate the value in something made by hand ,one at a time. I cant change the system but i do have control over how i deal with it.

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Response to tapermaker (Reply #64)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:26 PM

76. Yes, a niche business. While teaching full-time, we have built up a furniture repair

business which has turned into an antique restoration business. My spouse and I work 12-16 hours per week on 2 pieces per week, and this very part-time job now equals my teaching salary. I grew up in a family of painters and carpenters, so I had some skills, although I had to develop specifics for furniture - for example, all repairs are glue and clamp, never a mechanical fastener.

When I retire in 2 years, my pension will pay 46% of my teaching salary, but the antiques will continue at the same rate or get bigger with more time. It's mostly a brain exercise, the physical aspect is minimal, and so we can continue it.

We haven't advertised in 20 years - after the first five, word got around, and we have regular customers from Dallas and San Antonio, both 300 miles away, as well as lots closer.

Investment was minimal as far as materials - some lacquer thinner, various stains and finishes, clamps, most of them developed homemade over time for specifics, sandpapers, and some space - we used one side of the two car garage for years, and finally built a 20x20 shed in the backyard (those skills are the ones I've had since a teenager.) We read and looked and reasoned and never proceeded until we were sure of the outcome, and that worked.

Ethan Allen and a couple of other better furniture stores also bring us pieces with slight scratches and other flaws from store traffic or shipping damage, and that amounts to a couple of hundred dollars a week for very little time - the new finishes are still very fresh and easy to match, so that's just a nice sideline to the rest.

Use your best asset - YOU and your existing knowledge about anything. Work in tiny fashion at home. Spend little and work more at your newly selected enterprise. The Internet is full of free information as well from generous people giving the benefit of their experience and knowledge.

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Response to tapermaker (Reply #64)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:07 PM

142. Can't do it. No second income stream.

That's what people can't seem to understand about self-employment--you MUST have a second income stream such as a working spouse to be able to do it. It is virtually impossible for a single person to be able to do this.

There are few niche things that are worth bothering with, and nothing I would be even remotely interested in anyway. There is no demand. That's the problem. If nobody is buying, nobody can make a living at self-employment. A hobby on the side or a "business" on the side won't cut it if you desperately need enough money to support yourself.

For the vast majority of people, self-employment is NO option.

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Response to tapermaker (Reply #51)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:47 PM

84. That's a great story

and I'm glad it has worked out for you.

However, imagine having to do that while being homeless. Having a place to live while you did all of that was the difference between your good fortune and another's homelessness.

I suspect that having a relative give someone a place to live isn't really an option for many, many people.

What about them?

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Response to Duer 157099 (Reply #84)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 05:50 PM

110. Preaching to the choir .

I am firmly behind a strong safety net for those not so lucky. I just wanted to convey that there are other areas a 50 year old unemployed person can look to for a way to make ends meet. In my perfect world older workers would enjoy respect shown through pay equity and job security. Not shuffled aside and discarded like trash so a company can hire a rookie at half the pay and no benefits.

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Response to tapermaker (Reply #51)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:12 PM

90. I have something. THE MAKE A FISH FOUNDATION

 

A non profit. Arts related using fish to give the opportunity to create art. But right now I am the caregiver for my Mom. Once that concludes I will be able to work the foundation again (Provided I can raise the funding) and I will be very very happy. Not rich but happy. But I have always been like that. Self employed is my deal and has hindered my job search as well. Nobody wants to have a guy come in and know more than they do.

But, I know guys and girls that have lost their jobs in the past 10 years or so and MOST of them don't have self employment in them.

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:14 PM

91. my bro is 53

he was always a roofer, but by the time he was about 48-50, his body was shot, and he couldn't roof anymore. after a couple of years of unemployment and working as an extra in LA, he decided to take the bull by the horns and entered truck driving school (big rigs). he already had experience driving roofing trucks, so it was easier for him. now he leases a rig and he's earning a decent living for someone his age re-entering the workforce. trucking is not for everyone (i'd never do it - too dangerous!), but it seems to be working for him.

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Response to shanti (Reply #91)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:31 PM

145. In a lot of communities (ours, for example) you can learn big rig driving at community college

There are other skills you can pick up at JC and become self employed with a fairly minimal cash outlay, such as property appraisal.

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 03:13 PM

98. Mine, too, more or less.

I'll be 52 this week. Got laid off from my research job of 20 years right at the cusp of the recession. Jobs were already scarce at that point. I made do with seasonal work, and occasional contract jobs, but even that has dried up. Most of the jobs open now in my field are regulatory type jobs with state and federal governments. And, they've been laying off people. So, I get to compete with the ones who got laid off, who were regulatory types. Ten years ago, I could have easily gotten an entry level regulatory job. Now, forget it. When research jobs come open, they inevitably hire former students. Meanwhile, with a Masters degree and my employment background, they won't even look at my application for jobs at a grocery store, fast food, retail...

When I'm lucky enough to get an interview, they often ask "What are you doing now?" when they find out that my seasonal jobs are gone. Not working, and that makes me damaged goods, and not worthy of further consideration. And, so it continues... "Shit out of luck", indeed. That would be me, it appears.

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #5)


Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:04 AM

6. If we are going to engage on moving SS age, we must push for 55

or some other even lower age, so that even by day one of actual negotiations, those who wish to raise it much eventually 'compromise' towards an age which is lower than the current one.

Ergo, pushing for a 50 retirement age puts the compromise at a reasonable 60.

Negotiations 101.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:07 AM

7. In the political realm, who opposed all this?

You would think that some politicians would be screaming their heads off that the majority of their constituents were getting hosed.

From what I can recall things have been fairly quiet in DC in this regard though.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:12 AM

8. Most Politician Who Run On Progressive Ideas Get Trashed By Voters As----

being too socialistic or communistic. The mantra works almost every time and we get people like Boehner and Cantor.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:09 PM

32. Most of the few working class americans

who know that all of the other developed nations have guaranteed health care, paid vacations, paid sick leave, etc.. believe that it is crazy. Crazy for people to be able to enjoy life? Yep, "that would ruin amerika," most do not realize that the banksters, govt. employees,CEO's, etc in america have the same perks. Of course, their salaries are very different.
Our librul media at work.
It is with this in mind that I praise Dennis Kucinich for joining faux news. I have already been informed by my fellow DU'ers that
is crazy thinking...
Hope..

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:18 PM

72. Or get trashed by their Party. :(

Can't have anyone who upsets the bosses that pay for campaigns.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:48 PM

136. But people are waking up.

Data from newly registered voters between the ages of 18 and 24 here in California show that six percent are going Green Party, while an additional 21% decline to state.

I have had friends ask me why I am so disgusted by people at the top in the Democratic Party. The people that are "Democratic Party leaders." Until a person is threatened with losing their job, or they get behind enough in their mortgage situation, they believe the headlines - about all the great things the Democrats are currently done for the middle class.
They don't get it - that our jobs are outsourced under both Dems and Republicans.

Eighty percent of what any presidential administration gets done involves the appointments. Although it is a very popular meme that what is going wrong in this country has to do with the Republicans, I keep asking people, So please NAME for me the Republicans who forced Obama to put Geithner into his spot at Treasury. Or who twisted O's arm so he had to re-appoint Bernanke. Just name the Republicans who forced President Obama to appoint Mike Taylor to FDA, and give Monsanto's famine foods full steam ahead approval. And who is it that twisted Obama's arm so he had to appoint Valsick to the top spot in the Agricultural Department? I have been asking these questions since late November 2008 - and so far, no one I know has named a single Republican!

I do notice that the moment that someone I know gets laid off, and they soon have time to investigate things, not just reading the headlines, but really spending time investigating. And within six months of poking around on the internet, they come to the same conclusion that I came to five years ago. That the Political Class doesn't care - and the only way to make them care is to start really considering things outside of the box.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:19 AM

10. A lot like the gun debate

the sociopaths who "represent" us get huge contributions from Big Insurance, thereby guaranteeing them 20% off the top on all of the health "care" in the US. Ron Widen was outspoken for UHC until he became a Senator, now he says it's impossible.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #10)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:40 PM

50. I like Eugene V Debs position. Surely we know it. nt

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:36 PM

47. Indeed. The silence roared. I started pulling SS at 63...

Waiting any longer for an incremental increase only gobbled up more IRA. Saw this coming yrs.ago and acted accordingly.

Here in Austin, the once- noted political activism is seen as uncool, unhep. Lots of tattoos, though. I wonder: with less & less time on the site-based Internet, and more & more time on the social Innertube, if those younger than myself have created a cloud where they can pretend things are/will be better? I wonder how much longer they can put up with it?

"Depressed and down-hearted, I took to Cloud 9"

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:20 AM

11. One of the original selling points of SS.....

was that it reduced the unemployment rate and opened up more positions for those in their 20's-50's.

Many, many of the 40-50 million uninsured are in this class, too. If you can't work, you generally don't have health insurance. Lowering Medicare would at least cover those.

I just turned 60. I'm there, I'm doing that. Currently working at a $10/hr job. Security? WTF is that? Sucks to be me.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:30 AM

15. Unions and employee cooperative ownership can change it...

...the demise of unions was the beginning of the end for the American worker and the American economy. Decimation of unions resulted in humongous and historic levels of income inequality, trade imbalances, and the dissolution of the middle class.

We need unions. Even many progressives have turned away from supporting unions in past decades but IMO they need to look again and reconstitute or begin their support of unions. It won't be easy. It won't be pretty. But it was the only way then (when the economy worked for a decade or two as unions became more prevalent) and it is one of the only ways now.

Besides supporting the overturn of Citizens United, public funding of elections, busting up the corporate media, and Congressional salary and benefits reduction/elimination.

It is not up to corporations. They will not give up anything. Ever. It has to be TAKEN from them.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:32 AM

16. So very true.

Ask anyone that is unemployed and over 50. I have zero hope for the future. It makes suicide a very real option. If you are young and think you will fair better, be prepared for a rude awakening.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:51 AM

21. Some will think your statement is extreme. It is not.

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Response to russspeakeasy (Reply #21)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:11 PM

35. It is the world I live in.

As do many others that are facing a life of invisible destitution. I'm not equipped for it. I've worked and provided for others my entire adult life. Payed my taxes, put some away for retirement, played by the rules, and worked my ass off, only to get crushed by the fully preplanned "great recession" just as I am approaching retirement age. And NEITHER major political party is doing a damn thing to help those of us in the CRISIS we are facing. NOTHING. In fact, BOTH are doing the Kabuki Dance and cutting our legs out from under us. Personally, my days are few, by my choice, because I am left no other viable option.

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Response to russspeakeasy (Reply #21)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:28 PM

93. Not the least bit extreme.

 

What d you do? You hurt constantly. You have no money to do the things you enjoy. You are a long ways from SS and are in the middle of applying (I am on my third time)

Right now I am an IHSS care giver but that will be winding up in not too long I am afraid

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Response to Bennyboy (Reply #93)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:56 PM

140. best of luck to you and yours.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:10 PM

34. There is ALWAYS hope for the future...

Just turned 54 and have been underemployed for 5 years now in a little better than minimum wage position ... management positions prior to that and a good work record. Is there a job you would love? Is there a business you can start? Even a small start toward either? Do not despair. You are not alone and perhaps your work forward will help someone else...

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Response to rosesaylavee (Reply #34)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:36 PM

46. Sorry to have to disagree.

But no, there isn't always hope for the future. That is a well crafted myth to quell the anger. At age 60, with my body feeling the effects of a lifetime of construction work, I am wide open to being proven wrong. What do you suggest I do that will provide livable earnings? Keep in mind that my savings and retirement have all been drained trying just to stay alive. What business should I start without any resources that will provide immediate income and stability for the future?

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #46)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:43 PM

52. Only you can answer that...

but if you are in despair, that makes it harder to see. Can you apply for disability? Can you write? Can you speak to groups?

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Response to rosesaylavee (Reply #52)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:55 PM

57. Well then.

I guess it's all my fault again. Thanks for all of your help.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #57)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:58 PM

61. No, that's

the despair talking. I understand your plight more than you know.

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Response to rosesaylavee (Reply #61)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:14 PM

66. Platitudes don't help.

Do you think I'm in despair because I chose to be? And that if I 'just get a positive attitude' things are going to turn around for me? I'm in despair because everything i worked a lifetime building is gone and isn't coming back, EVER. NO ONE even replies to the thousands of job apps and resumes I've put out, let alone give me an interview.

What you are saying to me, is symptomatic of the problem, you advocate that somehow my world is going to 'get better" but then offer nothing of substance as to how it will happen. This is what happens every time us invisible voices reach out for help, ESPECIALLY to the government and political party we have poured ourselves into for decades. I don't know what to say that will break thru that wall.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #66)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:38 PM

79. Not knowing you prevents me from suggesting anything personally pertinent to your situation

However, we all have more than one skill set. I am suggesting you reconsider how you are looking. If you have sent out 1000 resumes and received no answer, that is an answer. Can you ask for work thru a friend or former colleague? More jobs are attained by a personal recommendation than a resume. And yes, I can see how what I have said about despair and hope may sound like a platitude - but historically, despair has never been the answer. Sit in it for awhile if you feel you must or can't resist it. But allow yourself to continue to hope and listen to what surfaces when you allow that. Look at this thread. You are not alone.

And as for reaching out for help, I am just an anonymous person on the internet, not the govt, not the DEM party. Reach out to those in your community, your family, your friends for assistance. Make a short list of your immediate needs and find an agency to help in your county. One person found there may lead you along the path to what you are looking for... just start.

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Response to rosesaylavee (Reply #79)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:11 PM

89. I understand that you are speaking...

.. in good faith, it's not personal with you, if I gave you that impression, my humble apologies.

If you did know me, you would realize that I have done virtually everything you suggest. My plight is being repeated countless times across this once great nation. We are the forgotten walking wounded from the War on the middle class, waged by the new improved Corporate States of America. America has lost it's compassion in the name of Profit Above All Else. I fought the good fight for as long as I could. I have nothing left to give.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #89)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 05:20 PM

188. There is a pogrom against over-50 workers.

I lost my last real, high-paying engineering job in 2009. The very day the market imploded my company (Seagate) announced it would close a design center (ours). 160 engineers and technicians and staff were let go. We got a very generous severance package, which was 2 weeks pay for each year of service, capped at 52 weeks. I walked out with almost 50 weeks pay.

But the jobs didn't really go away - they just went to China. We had been training our replacements for the prior tree years. We just didn't know it.

Because my skill set was very good, I was able to find work after only four months, but only because a friend vouched for me. It was a very good company run by very bad people, Evergreen Solar. I got in as a contractor, taking a $45,000 pay cut and losing all my benefits. During the year that I was there the stage was being set to sell the company to Chinese interests. After a year my contract was up and I was let go. Within the next 12 months, the entire operation shut down and all the capital equipment was sent to China, and every last soul was fired. The top guys made millions in the sale.

I sent out a flurry of resumes, and actually got a half-dozen interviews, but after each one I knew, just by looking at the cross-section of employees (all younger) that I didn't have a prayer.

I eventually got hired again, this time as a full-time employee with benefits but alas, took another $13,500 pay cut. The hours were absolutely brutal - 12 hour days were expected at a minimum, and I just couldn't keep up due to some serious back problems. After 10 months and change, I took a few weeks off on STD to get physical therapy and and was immediately fired. I filed for Workmen's Compensation and the case is still in court two years later.

I filed for SSDI in September of 2011 and to my everlasting relief was approved on the first try. I get the maximum benefit, since I was a high wage earner my entire career and always came up against the income cap. Without this, I would be burning through my savings at a ferocious clip and would be homeless after a few years.

I know of lots of over-50 engineers who've also been slowly dying over the last few years. There are supposedly lots of jobs out there, but no one wants to hire someone who makes good money or may get sick.

I don't know where things are headed, but this isn't good. All that engineering talent lying around, and companies want to bring in thousands of H1b workers. Even if you do get a job, the instant your company even talks about Far East manufacturing, get ready for the worst.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #46)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:22 PM

75. Make Stuff

Not big, heavy stuff, but little stuff, cool stuff. You have the skills.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #46)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:36 PM

147. Off the top of my head, two things

If you've worked in construction your whole life, I'd look into remaking yourself as a construction manager. Line up the subs; schedule the materials, make sure everyone has certificates of insurance -- that sort of thing.

The second thing is become a general contractor. Same basic idea.

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Response to OmahaBlueDog (Reply #147)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 08:24 AM

168. Or he could also act as construction consultant or estimator nt

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Response to rosesaylavee (Reply #168)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 05:36 PM

189. Excellent ideas.

Now, which companies do you suggest I can expect to be hired by? Bear in mind what the OP said and that I am a few months shy of turning 60. (In all honesty, I have apps and resumes at literally hundreds of construction firms, both large and small, I've never received so much as a single nibble, in over 3 years.)

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #189)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 06:37 PM

194. If you are interested in consulting or estimating,

and if it were me, set up as a sole proprietorship - which is simplest tax wise and I think all you need to do then is register with the state. My state requires your person name to be part of the name of the business... or 99Forever Construction Estimating. If you have experience estimating for various kinds of construction, make a list - call the companies you did this for, get references and ask if you can use them to start your new venture.

Contact construction companies who look busy and ask if they would need an independent estimator?

If you are a few months shy of turning 60, there is no need to tell them that of course - you know that - but just in case you feel compelled to talk about it, fight that impulse.

I have worked in construction - for a general for a number of years - in a past job and we did, on occasion, use an estimator when we were swamped.

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Response to OmahaBlueDog (Reply #147)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 10:11 AM

172. Both good ideas.

The first, working as a construction manager would be great and is something I have actually actively pursued. Hasn't panned out for me, but if you know of someone looking to hire a 60 year old into such a position, I can start right away.

The second, general contractor, is a much tougher nut to crack. If there were enough customers looking for generals, (market is still VERY soft) and if I could line up enough customers to base a business on, are you aware of what is required before one can start on the first job? General contractors have to be licensed, bonded, and insured. It takes a substantial cash outlay before one can even think about bidding jobs. (That is, if someone asks you to bid on their project.)

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:31 PM

44. As my 51st birthday approaches

I am stuck working under abhorrent conditions.

I am a professional. The industry I work in was decimated in the 2000s ... I was very "lucky" to keep my job; however, the scene was set to work for much lowered wages (lower than they were in the 1990s) and fairly awful conditions.

Younger workers are simply leaving the field ... as I approach 51, I don't think that is realistic.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:49 PM

55. I am 44...

and I have no doubt about the fate of SS. I invest in 401k, but probably would have better odds in Vegas. So, I can work until I drop (if I am lucky enough to have a job at that time) or take a Harley off the Grand Canyon while firing a flare into the gas tank. At least with the last option I am going out on my terms.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:11 PM

65. I hear you...

I don't have words of wisdom, I just want you to know I hear you.

Please accept virtual hugs of support...I send them sincerely.




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Response to OneGrassRoot (Reply #65)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:16 PM

69. Thank you.

What hurts the most, is knowing what this says about the world we are leaving to the next generations.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:48 PM

151. Suicides of people in this situation are very real

A coworker of mine told me of a man in her neighborhood who was battling a Labor and Industries disability claim for a couple of years. He and his wife were holding on by a thread, but not really. He eventually went suicide by cop.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:33 AM

17. I didn't believe that this happened since most of the leaders appeared to be men in their 50s

My former boss and coworker who is more "qualified" than me has been unable to find a job at 55 after being fired 18 months ago. I think that he is limiting himself by staying in our area, but I found work in our field in two months with other interviews pending at the time.
My own father, who is the same age, was forced out of his management position after almost 20 years as a manager in which he had received excellent reviews and won corporate awards. He started receiving less positive reviews two years ago after being diagnosed with prostate cancer and having surgery. Then they cut two positions while increasing business and gave him those responsibilities too to set him up for failing. They did let him continue to work as a "unskilled" laborer with the associated pay cut. I guess that it is better than nothing.
My own company is lead mostly by people in their thirties and forties. There are a few older people, but they are extremely accomplished. I guess that my chance as I get older is to be extremely accomplished. Not everyone can though and even then an illnesses like my father's would probably trump everything.

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Response to Nikia (Reply #17)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:08 PM

31. This is exactly why I'm suspicious of employer sponsored health screening.

It's all couched in language that says it's to promote the health of their employees. And I have no doubt in my mind that the recommendations are the right thing for a person to do. However, I do not trust the motives of corporations. What would they do if an employee was diagnosed with cancer in their 40's or 50's - something that inevitably would require long-term and expensive treatment? Probably not fire them outright but early screenings provide them plenty of time to provide "incentive" to get someone to quit.

Color me cynical. In this regard, I am. Employers have no business being involved in health care. Funny how they've put themselves right in the middle despite the additional overhead it incurs. From a bottom line perspective, one would think they would be the biggest proponent of a single payer system. But they aren't. I cannot help but wonder why.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:33 AM

18. Do not blame the businesses.

If you dont restrain capitalism, this is what you get. In spite of what Justice Roberts says businesses are not human and do not have morals. In a capitalistic system the goal is to gain as much wealth as possible and morals get in the way of that goal. Some will argue that we have humans running the companies. Sure we do, and those humans that use morals to run their businesses soon find out that they "gain" less than the companies that are not guided by morals and they are soon replaced.

Bad analogy time

Let's say we are going to have a football game and someone says "Hey we have too many regulations. Let's eliminate the regulation on how many players can be in the game." So Team A fields 11 players and Team B fields 20 players and proceeds to kick Team A's asses. Team A complains that it wasnt fair or moral for team to play with more players. Team B responds that the goal is to win the game not be the most moral.

The goal in capitalism is to gain wealth not be moral. If we want morality we must force it on the corporations, not sit back and expect them to see the light and voluntarily become moral.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #18)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:57 AM

26. Exactly! nt

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Response to SunSeeker (Reply #26)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:36 PM

78. Ditto!

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #18)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:01 PM

85. Super post!

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #18)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 01:34 AM

158. Just Look at Apple

They have zero morals, but the American consumer wants an IPhone at an affordable price.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #18)

Tue Jan 22, 2013, 10:17 PM

198. Want to hear a horror story?

A friend of mine who was a loyal employee of 25 years was diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2002. He had the kidney removed and his prognosis was good, but six months later the cancer had returned and had spread to, well, everywhere.

He was missing a lot of time from work for chemo and radiation. Our VP of engineering, who was a simply staggering prick, made the courageous decision to fire him. Well, the engineers and designers who worked with this guy were fucking outraged beyond belief. This VP was insanely wealthy, pulling in about $2m per year with salary, stock options amd bonuses. We couldn't outright kill the VP, although everyone wanted to. Instead, everyone in the department donated one week of vacation time and converted it into cash. We presented our colleague with a check for over $90,000.

The VP harrumphed a few times when he heard this, and he was pissed that we had all banded together to support a friend and colleague, seeing it as an act of defiance. Our friend was an excellent worker and an incredibly decent human being. He's still hanging on 10 years later but really looks terrible. The cancer has spread to his liver and his days are numbered. Thankfully he was quickly approved for SSDI and his kids have been helping him tremendously.

But the point is, that this VP is very representative of the corporate leadership we have today. They would literally have you die than lose a few bucks. It's not hyperbole, they are that fucking evil.

It's not capitalism, but a nasty breed of fucker that has come into power in the last 20 years or so. The business schools are teaching all about entitlement and nothing about being a human fucking being.

If I ever see that VP again, I swear I am going right for his balls.

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Response to Flatulo (Reply #198)

Tue Jan 22, 2013, 10:21 PM

199. Sorry to hear about your friends plight.

But capitalism fosters the advancement of these types of people. The more ruthless the better for the bottom line. I have seen it first hand.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #199)

Tue Jan 22, 2013, 10:28 PM

201. But back in the day they treated people decently, even when they didn't have to.

My wife's appendix ruptured in 1984. The law firm she worked for payed her full wages for the 8 week recovery. They even had the paycheck sent to our home by courier. She was a legal secretary and pretty low in the food chain.

She had STD insurance, but as you know it only pays 60% of your salary. They didn't even file a claim, they just payed her her full salary.

Today this would not happen. People have changed. They suck now.

But I get your point. The more ruthless you are, the higher you'll rise in the corporation. They want people who have absolutely no soul making decisions based solely on $$$.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:45 AM

19. I think we're well past that, already

I'd make that number lower than 50. I know lots of 40-somethings who can't find appropriate work. (Me, for one.)

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:51 AM

23. I don't believe you that the American worker has embraced all of this mayhem. Silent

submission is not an embrace. Duration of the tolerant rip-off is exactly proportional to the human limitational capacity to survive and what steps one will take to do that. I expect to see unions become more powerful. Choosing leaders of unionswith the capacity to unite masses of workers with common interest in balancing inequity in wage and CEO heists, and with the political savy and wherewithall to obtain results, and promotion of these ideas with integrity devoid of self-interest carefully is difficult. I'm sure these folks exist, so I have not given up on hope for American workers. Richie rich lost a bunch of dough on the last election.

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Response to lonestarnot (Reply #23)

Tue Jan 22, 2013, 10:24 PM

200. I wonder if its too late to organize? Any job that can be done here can be done in China.

American corporations are looking at China as their new market, not just a source of cheap labor.

Other than plumber, electricians, carpenters and medical providers, I can't think of any job that can't be outsourced.

I fear it may be too late for unionizing to save us. American companies will just move everything lock stock and barrel to China.

Boston Scientific didn't like the medical device tax of 2.5% in the ACA, so they pulled out an entire $2.5b division and moved it to China. Workers, managers, everything is gone.

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Response to Flatulo (Reply #200)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 12:07 AM

202. Never to late to organize! Never. And there a plenty of green jobs that cannot be outsourced.

More than enough to put plenty of people back to work. Corps. should be penalized greatly for sending jobs overseas.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:56 AM

24. CEO's = sociopaths ...what would you expect. n/t

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Response to L0oniX (Reply #24)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:57 PM

60. You don't know how true those words are.

According Chris Hayes, the Nazi propagandist moved to the US after WWII to run corporations.

Both my husband and I are over 50, disabled vets and even though we have our own health care through the military, no one will hire us when they find out how old we are. It's kind of funny really. We get lots of interviews (no age on our resumes) but once they see us and realize we are over 50, we never get the jobs.

We started our own business farming because no one would hire us.

It's not about corporations having to pay high medical bills because of our age, because we make it clear we will be using our military health care benefits. It's about corporations not wanting to have older people in the workforce, simple discrimination.

The jobs are going to get fewer and fewer because as businesses create huge empire like corporations, they need fewer and fewer people to do the work. As the jobs dwindle, instead of everyone sharing in reduced hours and longer vacations, certain people, those over 50, the disabled, young people, minorities are singled out and told NO JOB FOR YOU. Instead of the entire society deciding how the jobs will be distributed, a few greedy psychopaths get to make that decision.

Welcome to capitalism's greatest failure.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:00 PM

28. Answer: UNIONS!

The correct answer is Unions and REGULATIONS...but with our corporate-controlled Congress that appears unlikely.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:03 PM

29. This is scary

When the last company I worked for went under I decided to ditch the corporate world and strike out on my own. I started two home based businesses which keeps cash in my pocket but not enough to really save. When the one business grew I started taking credit cards for the customer's convenience which has increased sales.

The problem with being an entrepre . . . however you spell it, is you have to continuously look for new customers. Granted I have repeat customers and they refer other people my way, but you have to keep on top of things to continue to bring in money.

I much prefer working full-time again for someone else. You go to work, you know what you are supposed to do, then go home. I miss those days but know it will never happen again which is scary.

The other problem is getting people to pay. I'm owned $1,800 from one web job I did for an association and $200 owned from my electric repair business. That's $2000 I really could use right now. Sometimes you have to continuously send out invoices until they pay.

So it sucks being on your own trying to make it.

I have thought about checking out some job fairs. But who is going to hire someone who has been out of the work force for 10 years now?



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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:06 PM

30. You are so right, Nemesis. There IS age discrimination.

I just love it when over-50 people scoff at the idea of age discrimination....they are comfy in secure jobs, haven't been unemployed in years (if ever), and so don't know what it's like out there to look for new employment past the age of 50.

I changed jobs at 58. I was lucky. But you know, that is rare. And I came with a stable job history, references, no black marks on my record at all. So I found a new job fairly quickly....AT A LOW WAGE. Still, I was lucky to find one.

There are things you can do to help the bias, though, so here are some tips, both from me and from an employment agent who told me that the reason older workers have trouble finding work are because of these things, not exactly age:

1. Get your weight down to the norm. Being obese, which many people are these days, makes you look older, and it makes you unhealthier than someone who's not obese. A prospective employer will think that an obese worker will have, or will most likely get, diabetes, high blood pressure, miss more work, etc. "Norm" can include being overweight. Just not obese. If you are obese, there's not much you can do in the short term, except to start work on this immediately, and dress to look neat and slim, to de-emphasize it.

2. Update your appearance. You DO have to look like you live in the 21st century. A navy suit is always in style, but not if your skirt hits below the knee, and your shoes like those your grandma wore, and that's the same hairstyle you wore in high school (unless it's a classic that is always in style).

3. Don't mention any physical restriction or ailment. Period. Unless you really have a disability. Otherwise, you should be prepared to be able to perform the duties that you are applying for.

4. Be energetic. Step up your walk, be bright and peppy when you speak (don't overdo it!). If you slog in, walk slowly, carefully sit down, push yourself up out of your chair, are slow to respond to questions....that ages you. Are you 90 years old? If not, try to be the energetic person you really are!

5. It's okay to ask about benefits, incl. insurance, but don't go on about insurance details. That leads employers to think you're sickly. "Does the insurance pay for diabetes medication?" is not something a 40 year old would be asking, probably. You can find out details AFTER the interview, if you get the job. Or ask the agent to find out.

6. Gray hair is aging. It looks great on some women, and is appropriate for men. But there's no doubt that gray hair shouts "mature." A GOOD hair coloring job takes years off a woman's appearance. No gray roots....goes w/o saying.

7. Have a happy disposition. We all tend to get a little more sober, solemn, as we age. The trials and tribulations of life begin to take their toll. And with unemployment, serious depression can set in. Try to act a little more like you were a couple of decades ago.

8. Be confident. You would make a good employee, right? You're a good, productive, reliable worker, right? Any company would be lucky to have you, right, despite the competition? You have a lot to offer, right? Don't be arrogant, but be confident in your abilities.

The agent I used told me that some older workers have bad job histories, look very unhealthy, are overly concerned with insurance (meaning they have health issues), dressed sloppily for interviews (believe it or not), didn't fix their hair or take care with grooming, etc. She said those are the reasons those older workers didn't get jobs. The reasons are age related indirectly, sometimes, but not strictly age-based. She said that I, and those like me, would not have a problem. And I didn't. She was right. I was surprised because I was convinced no one would want me because of my age. But she knew what she was talking about.

Age discrimination exists. But there are companies out there that value mature workers, and the reliability and experience they bring to a job. Keep at it! Being unemployed is very upsetting and depressing (I speak from experience). Confidence is hard to come by. I went on my first interview, not having had any sleep for 36 hours (I was so depressed I couldn't eat or sleep). I didn't sleep much, and I lost a full dress size in two weeks from not eating. But I put up a fake front, did my best to be professional in interviews, I made some mistakes...but I got a job, and I am pretty happy in my new job. IT CAN HAPPEN.

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #30)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:24 PM

38. Yep. Fired illegally five years ago at age 53

I am female, never-married, sole support, and cannot get ANY full-time regular work all these years later in ANY field.

I just laugh at "suggestions" somebody like me should "start my own business" when there is NO demand out there for goods and services. Not to mention NO money to do it.

Weak or no demand is why the economy is still in the toilet.

BTW, your suggestions don't work when the problem is there are not enough jobs. Blaming applicants for not getting jobs because they don't look like anorexic twenty-somethings is just not dealing with the reality of the workplace.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #38)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:18 PM

132. Of course my post applies ONLY when there are jobs to be had.

Sorry, I should have made that clear. I live in an area, and work in a field, that started hiring again last year.

I'm not blaming the applicant, and didn't mean it to sound that way. But the agent was telling me what she had personally seen. There ARE people who look like they haven't moved into the 21st century, who look much older than they are, are very unhealthy (and look it), etc.

We all have to compete for jobs, even when there are jobs to be had. If you look at it from the employer's point of view, they want a reliable, healthy, pleasant, intelligent person as an employee, who will get along with others in the company, show up for work and not call in sick, and do good work. An older person should have racked up some length of time on one job, and should be able to have at least one reference from a supervisor. That's the bad thing about being older. If you're 35, you can get away with never having stayed anywhere for 5 years. But when you're 55, you need to have a length of time at one place.

What happened to you may be that...once you're unemployed, it gets harder as time passes to find a job. Employers may be thinking there's a reason no one has hired you yet? Something like that.

I don't know your history, so can't say what your situation is. But I agree that starting your own business takes MONEY...which you don't have when you're unemployed.

I had a Plan A, a Plan B, and a not so good Plan C, though. Just in case I couldn't find a job locally. It involved moving. You can't move? It takes money to move, but I have a house I could sell. I also thought about working at a fast food joint, but I thought moving might be better. I thought people wouldn't want to hire an older worker for a job where I'd stand on my feet all day, also.

I hope things get better for you soon. I feel your pain. I was unemployed at 58 and scared to death, plus really upset at how I'd been treated at my company, after years of dedication. It was a very bad time. I went to my doctor for drugs......I was so upset I could barely function. Until then, I didn't believe in taking drugs. The drugs helped. Getting a job helped more, though. Good luck.

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #30)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:39 PM

49. Good and inspiration info

thanks Honeycombe8!

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #30)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:46 PM

54. That is all excellent advice.

With the possible exception of hair color. When my hair first started going gray, when I was just over 40, I did color it, and continued to do so for years. Eventually, my hair was so gray that the roots were showing after the first week, so I let the color grow out. And even with gray hair, I apparently look youthful enough, and I am energetic and extremely healthy, and I constantly astonish people when I tell them how old I actually am (64) because apparently they take me for a decade younger.

The weight thing is crucial. I have a friend who has not been able to find work in her field for several years, and I'm certain her being obese is a large factor. But how can I say anything without seeming cruel?

I have been arguing on DU for some time now that people over the age of 50 really can and do get jobs. Not every single one is permanently unemployable after that age. In some cases, new training would be a good idea. Just be realistic about what you want to train for, and do a little research about job growth in that field. Our junior colleges have excellent programs of many kinds that actually put you on track for a job. The idea that people would change actual careers more than once during their working life has been out there since at least the 1980's. Lifetime employment with one company was something that never really existed, but was a theme of the 1950's. By 1969 or so it was commonly understood that such lifetime employment was long gone.

Oh, brave new world!

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #30)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 04:34 AM

204. I just came back to this thread to state:

With all my wrinkles, grey hair and overweight . . . I'M PERFECT just the way I am. And you know the advantage of being 57? We no longer allow others to define us via SUPERFICIAL methods. You know the other advantage of being 57? We know all the "tricks" to being hired and listening ONE MORE TIME to some condescending diatribe has absolutely the opposite affect of what you intended (well, if "helping" was your intention but we both know, that wasn't REALLY your intention, now was it?).

Oh, and I PARTICULARLY liked this piece of . . . uh, advice: "Gray hair is aging. It looks great on some women, and is appropriate for men. "

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Response to Le Taz Hot (Reply #204)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 07:05 AM

209. Spoken like someone not looking for an office job.

I passed along information mainly from an employment agent, when I brought up the difficulty of getting a job at my age. She spoke for a couple of minutes about it, and had been doing that work for many years and was pretty good at it, apparently. She had some applicants who had not found work yet after being laid off in 2009 and 2010. She said it was NOT because of their ages, directly. She said it was these other things.

It is not superficial for an employer to want to hire someone who can do the job and not miss a lot of work. Being HEALTHY is one way to determine that. Esp with the cost of insurance, employers want to hire people who are optimistic, easy to be around, have a good disposition (take a hint-that means not argumentative when sometimes tries to help), energetic, and HEALTHY.

How you look relates to how healthy you are. How you look relates to which century you live in.

You are dealing with people who are predisposed to hold your age against you. One of the criticisms of older workers is that they aren't computer savvy, tech savvy, haven't moved into this generation. If you LOOK like you're living in 1975, you feed right into that criticism.

If you move slowly and can't get up from a chair without pushing yourself up and groaning....you appear to be old and unhealthy.

The gray hair thing is just a statement of fact: men can get away with it (Anderson Cooper), only some women can get away with it without it making them seem older. I've seen the transformation myself in other women...there is a salt and pepper transition stage, where a woman doesn't seem old in face and body, but the hair transition is pretty awful and looks like someone who doesn't care. If someone doesn't care about her appearance, then she probably doesn't care about her work, it can be interpreted.

If you have a job or don't need a job, and don't care about getting one...you are lucky. You can sit in your bedroom, look in the mirror, and shout how perfect you are to yourself. That's great. However, if you are competing for jobs with younger workers, and recognize that there is age discrimination out there, read the tips passed on by the experts. They know what htey're talking about.

If you show up for an interview at my company in a warmup suit, your salt and pepper hair in a pony tail, sneakers, and look like you stopped by on your way to the grocery store....you might be perfect to your mother, but you won't get a job at my company. Or at most companies. That is how one interviewer was dressed, the agent said. She also stressed that she needed a job with good insurance since she had to get back surgery asap. Needless to say, that person has not gotten a job.

If you dress a certain way for an interview, you recognize that there are rules, and respect, for the company you are interviewing with. And you would. Get off your high horse. You are NOT perfect. No one is. Be aware that there IS age discrimination. Walking in off the street, saying you are so wonderful just as you are, that they should hire you on the spot...won't get you a job.

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #209)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:32 AM

210. And the first time I heard that "advice"

I laughed so hard I nearly knocked the slats out of my crib. Are you gettin' it yet? Here's a word you need to learn: pedantic.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:30 PM

42. Lazy people! They should work until they are 70 according

to big business CEOs! I mean, jeez!

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:31 PM

43. And Don't Forget.....

They want to do away with minimum wage laws. So instead of working a service job for say $8.00 an hour, you will have to work two jobs at $4.00 an hour (if you can get a job that would pay that much). The GOP tells you how concerned they are for the future of our children while they do everything to lower our future ability to earn a decent living.

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Response to cynzke (Reply #43)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:44 PM

53. They want to scrap Social Security so they don't have to pay their share of the FICA tax.

It's really that simple.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:57 PM

59. And don't forget the crushing cost of borrowing to go to college.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:02 PM

63. 54, been looking for a decent job for a couple of years now

now work for what my current employer calls a "competitive wage", which is .25 more than min per hour. And it is a per hour, part time job.

Don't remember what PTO is. Haven't had a three day weekend in years. Paid vacation is a fading memory. Going to a movie is considered a luxury that I can only afford once every couple of months. Have pared down every expense, no cable, pay as you go phone, no credit cards. My standard of living has gone way, way down. Still I am warm and I am fed, but knowing that I will probably never be able to retire (or even take a vacation) makes me sometime wonder if it is all worth it.

It is hard to believe that my country does not need me anymore.

It is hard, (but I do it) to support any union cause because it seems to be only for them, and not for all of us. On the same note, some people that have been lucky enough to have escaped this horrible economy, just don't seem to understand or even care.

Till it happens to them, and it will. After every cent has been squeezed out of the working poor, it will start to affect the ones make $75,000+. I just do not see how this economy can support those higher paying jobs, when the majority of us make so little.

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Response to lifesbeautifulmagic (Reply #63)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 05:38 PM

107. Boy are you right!

"some people that have been lucky enough to have escaped this horrible economy, just don't seem to understand or even care. Till it happens to them, and it will."

Just about to post the same thing! The working poor are the ones who spend almost every single penny of their wages on goods and services and places to live. No savings. When we have no more money to spend, it's the ones who've "escaped" this economy who will be sitting right along side of us, due to no demand for the products/services that their companies make.

Start a business? Really? We can hardly keep a roof over our heads. I wish I could, I've had ideas, but when there's no money and no collateral, where do you get the financing??? Craft things? Who has the money for supplies? I swear, people who have "escaped this horrible economy" and are doing ok, seem to have their heads buried in the sand, or somewhere else I won't say.

It's all I can do not to lose my sanity; do I really want to hang around til I'm 70? I'm 46 and I see no proverbial light at the end of this tunnel.

I wish you, me, and the rest of the unemployed (in the country and on DU) the best of luck!! I hope the rest of the population wakes up and helps us demand JOBS NOW!! And, I hope that Karma, good vibes, and/or prayers, will help us really soon!
Til then...

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Response to lifesbeautifulmagic (Reply #63)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:31 PM

133. You're working for almost min. wage?

Do you have a specific vocation, and took a min. wage job because you had to get a job? Or have you typically worked at min. wage type jobs?

I know what you mean by "the country doesn't need you anymore." After working decades, it was crushing to realize that maybe no one would think I was worthy of hiring, that I was nothing, a nobody, not needed any more. But there I was, with years of experience, a good job history with a proven track record of working hard, doing good work, and getting along with my coworkers. I would possibly not be wanted just because of my age? Even though I'm healthy?

I was lucky that I got a decent job. But I know that others in my situation did not. We must NOT allow the Social Security retirement age to be raised, not without a fight. There are people just hanging on by a thread, waiting until the age of 62, to get back some of what they've paid in for decades.

I hope things get better for you.

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Response to lifesbeautifulmagic (Reply #63)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:41 PM

149. my background is admin, acct and clerical

work, quickbooks does my job now. I dropped out of the work force in 1994, to raise children and take care of parents. Trouble started when I went back, the type of jobs I do were either all gone or consolidated. Plus having to compete with younger, (meaning more tech savy), kids, bless them. It seems my generation got hit with the perfect storm of NAFTA and changing technology and glorification of the stock market as money maker.

I work retail now. For the least amount of money i have ever worked for.

I know someone will say "retrain", done that, too. Still no jobs.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:15 PM

68. And the stupid part is

Older workers are a lot more productive. They are more reliable and stable. There are five of us in my department who are 50-51 and we do the crux of the work. We are all long term stable workers. Our department goes through 20 somethings like crazy. They weed themselves out with their bad work habits.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:18 PM

70. The government needs to act as employer of last resort.

People who want to work and who are able-bodied should be guaranteed a job. The more people who work, the more wealth is created. Why should a fifty-something construction worker have to sit at home or work in a grocery store when we have so much infrastructure to maintain? It's completely obvious that that hurts everyone. The net wealth of the species drops, and it even hurts society's emotional mood.

The market doesn't demand full employment. It is up to us to demand it through the government. Don't we have climate change to respond to? Don't we have buildings to retrofit, bridges and roads to build? Wouldn't it be great if we had nationwide fiber optics. Wouldn't it be great if we did whatever is necessary to reduce pollution?

Keeping all cylinders firing isn't just compassion, and it isn't just having a social safety net for everyone's peace of mind. Those emotions are trying to tell us something of course, and it is something Republicans foolishly tune out. But keeping everyone producing wealth simply produces more wealth. More for everyone.

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Response to gulliver (Reply #70)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:05 PM

87. Excellent points!

I have been making this argument set for a while now... and few want to hear it in my area. But I am not giving up entirely because I can see that the corporate world wants to destroy what we the actual people have built so they can be the true overlords of humankind. They've managed to get pretty far down that path and need to be stopped ASAP.

And to all the discussion above, I would like to add that I went to college in my thirties to avoid what I am experiencing now, still haven't been able to use any of what I learned over ten years and two degrees for financial gain. I have had numerous jobs, moved to a tourism based place knowing that I could at least keep a roof over my head on the seasonal work since I was a hard worker... until one of those jobs trashed my back. Now I am considered a "throw-away" by the system. It takes years, several appeals and an attorney to get on SSDI, which would pay my under $900.00/month lifestyle sans medical costs, and worker's comp is not even interested in my medical condition or paying my lost wages, going on 9 months now. So it's a full time job just trying to stay alive right now with no income other than gifts from friends to pay the rent. Until this happened I was an avid skier, hiker and cyclist but now, I need ski poles to go for a very short walk.

I have put together a business plan that would be a boost for folks my age but getting funding is another issue...

These days I spend a lot of my time praying for change that is beneficial for me and people like me. Hope it comes soon or I'm likely to call it a life and go find a cliff to fall off of. Just sayin'.

My New Year's resolution is to stay positive, it's a big challenge some days and easier on others. This kind of discussion makes it tough but we need to share our experiences and brainstorm something different that will actually make the change happen.

I came on to look at LOL cats! Now I really need it! Later.

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Response to gulliver (Reply #70)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:36 PM

119. +1,000,000,000 x 1,000,000,000 - Well put and definitely

 

needed saying. I hope you will consider starting an OP around this theme and elaborating upon it.

There's really only one word for a society where 1% controls 40% of the wealth while 1 in 5 children live in poverty: OBSCENE.

And I really don't give a shit whether it's Dems or Rape-publi-scum in power.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:20 PM

73. Right on! It's a disgrace, and embraced by Third Way Democrats.

We need FDR Democrats again!

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #73)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:39 PM

80. This is what happens when neoliberal economic theories are embraced by both political parties

We need an overhaul in Washington policies, and if necessary, politicians.

It's trade agreements and other laws that have been passed that shaft the 99 percent that are why this economy remains in the toilet. "Technology" has little to do with it; people's appearance at job interviews has little to do with it. Telling people to start their own businesses when there is little or no demand for goods and services won't help. There are not enough jobs. Period.

We have a SYSTEMATIC problem here. It's deliberate policy, a race to the bottom.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #80)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:43 PM

82. We should change the word "neoliberal" to

"wolfinsheepsclothing"

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #82)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:46 PM

83. +1,000,000 n/t

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #73)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:04 PM

141. +100 nt

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:42 PM

81. Business is not going to change.


>>> "...the business community has be to be challenged to change its ways..."

They won't change, and we could all die trying to make them. We have a hundred years of the history of business and their attitude toward workers from the 1870's on. The workers struggled against business owners while the power of the government was brought to bear against them, even the AFL sided against them. Despite that they won changes to an 8 hour day and less child labor, the freedom to organize. In response, rather than embrace how much more profitable and secure it would make this country, it was estimated that business was spending $80 million a year to break and kill the movement. That's over a billino a year in today's dollars. All the evidence since then says business has not only stopped, but in recent years they have found how to destroy or circumvent even those few protections.

If a hundred years of history isn't going to teach us that, nothing will.

Until the workers own the assets and operate them, they will never win.

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Response to jtuck004 (Reply #81)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:08 PM

88. By Definition Of Our Politicians That Is Communism. And Amerikans Revolt Against That Idea Every --

time and support capitalists, billionaires and corporations. For some reason workers seem adept at screwing themselves every time.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Reply #88)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:47 PM

95. Politicians are paid to say that by business. But they say whatever their John wants them to, eh?


That doesn't controvert the need to keep one's eye on the goal, and realize that it is going to be a struggle.

Regardless of the excuses, however, if we choose not to struggle, the only choices are jobs in the house, or in the field, never being our own Masters.

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Response to jtuck004 (Reply #81)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 03:28 PM

99. well said

 

Sad to say,but all other options that many of us cling to,are like so much ice that melts away into tears of misery for the vast majority of us.Resistance seems futile,but conditions will change that as the inequality worsens.It can't end any other way.Capitalism will not be tamed or regulated.

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Response to Kingwithnothrone (Reply #99)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 03:13 PM

187. Our biggest problem is that resistance can be stopped with a fifty cent

an hour raise.

Labor demands far too little.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:17 PM

92. That's the new "plan"..

Eliminate jobs for 50+
Make SS/Medicare age 70

Most will perish before they reach that age..

Dead people do not "use" governmental resources..

A single $250 death benefit payment is more "cost-effective" than years of SS medicare benefits..

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:43 PM

94. I'm 54 and could retire next summer

after 33 years in a state job, but there's no way I'm giving up my job for at least 5 or 6 years.

Job creation is meaningless if those jobs are part-time with low pay and lousy benefits. Pensions are being slashed and robbed, unions are under attack, employers don't want full-times employees that qualify for health-care benefits.

I've been saying for decades that things are going to get much, much worse before they get any better. Labor unions came into existence because the working class was fed up and not willing to take it anymore. The lessons learned have to be learned all over again, and maybe in 5 or 10 or 20 years we'll reach a point where the working-class realizes they have to organize and fight back.

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Response to mokawanis (Reply #94)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 04:29 PM

102. ^agree

Very similar situation and socio-political sentiments as well.
I am not allowed to say what I think about our party choices on this site, but I'm worried for our future and making other plans. In the meantime, I'll ride it as long as possible.

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Response to mokawanis (Reply #94)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:05 AM

175. Are you certain your retirement fund is still intact?

I am reading of more and more pensions/retirement funds are being raided, are going broke in the current economy.
Many many retirement funds were invested in the various forms of mortgage and municipal bond debts which are going bust now.
Too many folks do not give much thought about their retirement funds, about who is running them and what they are being invested in.
I was one of those people, for a long time, who had the money taken out of the paycheck, had no idea what the 401-k and cds and etc, were about.
Found out that my money was in AIG and in Lehman.
Fortunately, was able to pull it all out 6 months before the crash.

but I know people who are counting on starting their retirement in a year or less and have no clue where their money is, or how it is doing. They have lost a lot of income from the dot.com crash in 2000 and again in 2008.

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #175)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 12:49 PM

183. I'm relieved to say that it is

I'm employed by the state of Wisconsin and I'm happy to say the employee trust fund in this state is, by all reports and studies, robust and healthy. It's one of the few state employee trust funds in the US that's fully-funded. Every projection I've seen has concluded that it will remain intact for the long-term. I'm crossing my fingers and hoping that's the case.

I appreciate your statements. My wife's 401-k took a big hit in 2008. It was really frustrating to watch the numbers drop and to think about the long-term impact it was making on her retirement plans.

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Response to mokawanis (Reply #94)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 05:50 PM

192. And you better pray your state doesn't steal your pension

Government pensions aren't covered by PBGC.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:53 PM

96. That was not so before

Anyway, it makes no sense. Especially once health insurance is divided from the job market.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 02:59 PM

97. If they won't hire us, they should let us get Medicare at 50

and Social security at 50.

This issue makes me furious. I'm almost 61 and have been jobless for more than 4 years, with a bit of freelance work here and there. I don't see any possibility of finding another job at my age, nor do I have the means to afford classes. I know there are MANY more in this situation and I wish there was some way we could fight back.

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Response to LiberalEsto (Reply #97)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 07:59 AM

167. +1

Last edited Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:21 AM - Edit history (1)

Both Medicare & SS should start at 50. With this, some will be able to leave their jobs, and some who lost their jobs might be able to survive. Also we need a new WPA. We're not even close to getting out of the 2nd Great Depression.


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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 04:16 PM

100. Wanted: New Paradigm

The human race does not have to accept the corporate/Wall Street model of greed and profit maximization (for the few)--at the expense of jobs and the environment (for the many)--as the way things are and always will be because that's the best of all possible worlds. Bullshit.

Some working people probably voted for Reagan in reaction to affirmative action (racism) and to preserve white supremacy, not fully understanding the implications of deregulated, anything-goes, trickle-down, union-busting, supply-side economics.

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Response to moondust (Reply #100)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 04:41 PM

103. When I Was At DOL I Always Believed The Argument About Affirmative Action Was A Cover For

a capitalistic system that was not and would not create decent jobs for everyone. And ever since Reagan the GOP has successfully used that argument to mask the fact that their agenda was about cutting not only the quantity of jobs but also the quality of jobs as well. Now we have an extremely huge jobs quality gap where virtually ALL new jobs created by the new CEO and corporate class only serve to enrich them at the expense of the people who create the wealth in the first place.

The new billionaires, millionaires and CEO business class are like leeches in that they are continually bleeding the powerless to get what they want. They are the new Sheriff's of Nottingham in this new feudal economy. It will take radical and militant confrontive change to reverse trends that have been put in place over 32 years by the GOP and its allies.

It will not stop even as we regress to a Dickensonian world. Obama is hated because he pauses their process like Clinton did. Obama and the Democrats themselves cannot truly reverse this agenda. Only knowledgeable voters who can elect even socia;list politicians can. The RW is in the process of invading our education system with privatization and charter schools. And Obama is making a huge blunder in supporting the kind of reform he is pursuing. He has only slight modified the Bush agenda.

The only hope is that even a misinformed and lied to younger generation understands in some way how they are being screwed.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Reply #103)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 05:17 PM

104. Education?

"Why should we pay taxes to support education when machines and Chinamen will be doing all the jobs of the future?" asked the CEO and his Republican lackeys. "Give us an IPO! IPO! IPO! IPO! Prisons, too! IPO! IPO! IPO! IPO!"

I'm afraid you may be right about radical change but it probably won't happen in my lifetime.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 04:20 PM

101. They'll make us work until 70, AND delete agism descrimination

So, sure would be nice to fight corporatism back somehow, huh?
We will all be there, if we're lucky and fast.

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Response to upi402 (Reply #101)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:33 PM

118. Why delete it when they're already practicing it?

Here's how it goes: if you don't have 5 years of work experience in X, you're not qualified. If you do, you're "overqualified".

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 05:36 PM

106. At 55 I'm making BIG BANK because I'm not teaching punks

to take over my job

That and my skill set is over 35 years of a Highly Technical Education and Experience.

Go ahead replace me - you'll come crying back to rehire me when the shit blows up. (It's already happened)

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 05:41 PM

108. We need to revisit and enact FDR's Second Bill of Rights

We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. Necessitous men are not free men. People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made.

In our day these economic truths have become accepted as self-evident. We have accepted, so to speak, a second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all – regardless of station, race, or creed. Among these are:

Opportunity
The right to a useful and remunerative job.
The right to a good education.
The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies…

Security
The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment.
The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health.
The right of every family to a decent home.
The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation.

Video here with complete list of rights-

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Response to Snarkoleptic (Reply #108)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 06:48 PM

113. This is the answer. We must fight for this.

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Response to Snarkoleptic (Reply #108)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:49 PM

120. +1 n/t

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Response to Snarkoleptic (Reply #108)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:56 PM

153. Needed: New Deal 2.0

...maybe 3.0 by the time we get Progressives back in office.

Our problems all stem from the fact that, since the Reagan revolution (and he was revolting), FDR's ideas have been dismissed as 'out of date.' Reagan's mix of 19th Century laissez faire ideologies and economics was considered to be 'fresh new ideas.' Most of the elders in my family, who still remembered the Great Depression, knew Reagan was full of it.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 06:46 PM

112. There's an entire generation of people with ZERO computer experience....

They are also of a generation where they feel they shouldn't have to learn anything new.

They figured those days ended when they got out of High School,...which they thought of as prison.

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #112)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:50 PM

121. Who are you referring to, the Baby Boomers?

Got news for you, they were on the forefront of technology.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #121)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:50 PM

130. I'm talking about the Al Bundy generation.

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #112)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:29 PM

126. Which generation would that be?

You mean one that has already all passed away?

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 06:50 PM

114. United Corporate States of America, Money Trumps All, all hail the 1% dominion$$$$$$$ nt

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:10 PM

116. I have been looking for 4.5 years for a job...

I will be 49 in April. It has been unbelievably hard.

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Response to sunwyn (Reply #116)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:51 PM

122. Yep. Going on five years for me.

Overqualified. All I can get are substitute teaching and teaching assistant jobs.

Not enough to support myself.

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Response to sunwyn (Reply #116)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:06 PM

131. I'm exactly a year younger and was laid off 4 times in just over 8 years.

I got my current gig (at less than half my old pay) through someone I used to manage back in the early 90's.

Hang in there...
linkedin.com is a good way to build a network of people and join various industry groups.
indeed.com is a good job search website that aggregates results from several other sites (use the advanced search to pare down results).
if you're on monster.com and careerbuilder.com, go in and update your resume weekly (add or drop a comma or period) to keep from sinking in search results.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:15 PM

124. I worked until I was 71 at my previous job.

I was laid off in 2010 only because the company was downsizing and not because of my age. Three of my co-workers were laid off at the same time and they were all younger than me.

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Response to RebelOne (Reply #124)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:44 PM

135. So you'll be okay with Social Security & Medicare and such, right?

You are lucky they kept you so long. I'm sure you were worth it.

My company actually seems to hire quite a few older workers, I noticed. Maybe they've learned what is true: they are getting valuable people at a cut rate (they get them at reduced pay, like they did with me, both because of age I guess and because of the recession). They get experienced workers who have learned to get along with others. And boy has my company gotten a good deal!

New hires: I'm in my 50s, so is Judy, so is Kelly, so is Pam, so was Sharon (but she's already quit...she wasn't treated well by her bosses). So is Teresa (been there a year), so is Debbie (well, Debbie may be in her late 40s).

Then there are some who are in their 40s. I know of one hire who is in her thirties.

And many of the others who have been there for 5 years are older, as well.

You know, some of the younger workers don't have the work ethic that older workers have. It seems my company has discovered that!

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #135)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 06:57 PM

197. Yes, I am OK. I have Medicare and Social Security, which is not too bad.

I had a 401K, but the Wall Street fiasco took a big chunk oui of it. So I stuck what was left into my savings and just use it for emergencies.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:25 PM

125. I am scared of the situation if I become unemployed.

I'm 50. I have strong credentials in my industry so I expect I could pick up another job without a whole lot of downtime, but that said, I've had a lot of unemployment days in my life.


If I couldn't get a job, though, how the fuck could I make 2 years, much less 20?

Somthing's wrong here.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:39 PM

127. I can relate

I've been working part time for the last 4 years. They work me just enough to not pay any benefits. I guess I need to start my own business. I used to do web design and still do some on the side.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 08:46 PM

129. Tell me about it

Companies kick you out if you make to 55 and no one else will hire you in the same field.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:34 PM

134. kick for truth and rec for power.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:55 PM

137. It used to be 40. They got me at 41...

Even though I held the company record for accuracy.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #137)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:09 PM

144. Over 40 and they have to worry about lawsuits

for this reason they'll give more severance to those over 40 in many cases, and ask for a signature that you will not pursue legal remedies.

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Response to flamingdem (Reply #144)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 01:21 AM

156. I saw a lawyer and he told me because I live in NY, they could fire me at any time for any reason

Unless I had a contract, which, of course, I didn't. I'd been there for over 15 years, was knowledgeable and flexible enough that I'd done three different jobs.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #156)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 02:39 AM

159. This lawyer didn't tell you about age discrimination lawsuits?

That's fairly common and the situation I described to you was California also without a contract. Some companies are less worried that employees will go after them though.

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Response to flamingdem (Reply #159)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 03:06 AM

161. He was the one who told me. He was a friend of my Dad's and knew the whole situation

I'd had surgery and when I came back it was obvious they were gunning for me. I even called the lawyer when they were in the process of firing me, though they tried to stop me, and he told me to be sure not to sign anything. Whether it was my health or my age, or both, I was told I couldn't do anything. But because they'd fired me, I could collect unemployment.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #161)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 12:13 PM

182. I would start making calls, try the state employment people

because it sounds like you have grounds for a suit!

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Response to flamingdem (Reply #144)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 12:08 PM

181. That's what they do where I work. You agree not to sue or disclose the terms of your "package".

My SIL wouldn't say exactly what the number was, but she said that she'd be able to pay her mortgage ($1500) for better than a year so at least she wouldn't be homeless.

Another woman was laid off at 62, after nearly 20 years. She said that the package was "very generous", and that the company would pay her health insurance premiums until she qualified for Medicare.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:57 PM

138. As long as corporations control both political parties, we are screwed.

This kind of discrimination needs to be illegal as hell. It is, actually, but they get around it by claiming some other reason.

No, we need to elect TRULY progressive people, and form a truly progressive party. Step one would be getting corporate money out of the process. The Democratic National Convention was completely sponsored by corporations. We need to stop electing politicians that whore themselves out to corporations. Obama and Congressional Democrats are wholly owned subsidiaries of Wall Street.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:08 PM

143. Well put. We cannot allow Social Security or Medicare age to be raised as the KOCH Bros. want

oh so badly - and American citizens sadly don't get it, are trained to do what they're told more than not ... and will accept this new contract if hounded into it.. so we must raise our voices!

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:41 PM

148. Emphatic K&R! This is a country where 1% control 40% of the

 

wealth, while 1 in 5 children lives in poverty.

There's only one word for that: OBSCENE.

Only a seriously sick society would create a situation where one must send out redacted resumes so as to disguise one's full set of qualifications and experience as a 'tell' about age. That's what I've resorted to and, here's the sick part: it gets me the interview. Of course, once the company realizes I'm over 50 it's "We'll be in touch as soon as we have made a decision" and then NOTHING.

This country is seriously fucking sick. And it's not getting better.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 11:52 PM

152. I was out of work for 7 months last year

I saw first hand at two job clubs I joined that ageism is very real and begins around age 50.

Shortly after I was hired in November 2011, I was on an interview panel. Had something like 35 applicants, most of whom were qualified, for 2 jobs with the state. It was very clear that many of them had been the victim of ageism in their field, and they were desperately digging for anything with a paycheck.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 12:18 AM

154. This post needs to go to the Greatest page...

or whatever passes for that page now.

I am 58. I have been (under)employed in the same basic service industry for over 17 years (not all with the same employer).

Due to budget cuts over the years, my income, which was never much above mere existence level, has dropped to half of what it was as little as four years ago.

Last year, I tried to move to a different employer in a very similar industry. It did not work out, but it seemed like right from the beginning like they wanted to drum me out. I felt this was due to age and appearance issues, not due to performance. Anyway, I had to go back to my former job, having lost all of my seniority and taking a huge drop in pay and opportunities.

I then tried to take on a second job...which ended disastrously, and will probably prevent me from finding a second job in my profession. This leaves only minimum wage and part time jobs as a possibility, and that is if I can even find one.

I can really relate when people are saying that suicide seems like all that there is left.

The only thing that helps is to remember that change is the one thing we can count on. No matter how things look right now...eventually change will happen.
And, I am not trying to be Pollyanna, nor denying the despair many of us are feeling. I am right there with you. I am my sole support, and I know all too well your pain. I have had over 17 years of poverty and worry about my future to try to live through. What saved me from offing myself after the debacle with the second job is my cat! She is too scared of strangers to be successfully adopted by anyone else, so I know I have to hang in there.

I literally do love my cat...she has kept me here and alive.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 12:57 AM

155. I'm holding on to my small business by the skin of my teeth

I left corporate America 15 years ago and bought a resort. It's located right outside one of our beautiful National Parks. When I reached the 9 year mark I thought I had made it. My property value was way up there, debt was manageable, and business had grown each year. Then came the Great Recession. Vacation is the first thing that folks cut when things are tight. Also, customers began taking shorter vacations, or just long weekends because they worried about their job security.

All of my utilities have gone way up, but I haven't been able to raise prices since 2007. I have cut everything to the bone and I'm working longer hours because I can't afford enough workers. I want to cry whenever a piece of equipment breaks--or when a customer tears something up. I watch youtube videos to learn how to fix things on my own instead of hiring outside folks.

In 2009 when things were the worst I started selling stuff on ebay. You know, the stuff in the attic and in the storage shed. I was shocked at how well I did, so I started buying at estate sales and many months I make more selling junk than I do at my resort. (Funny skit on Saturday Night Live not long ago about how we're all doing the Sanford & Son thing!)

At 55 I am sad and pissed off to be in this situation. This business is my home and my life savings. Will the customers come back this year or next? Am I going to be able to keep up this pace physically? Will commercial property values go back up and can I find a buyer before I die?

And my kids, at 25 and 21 (with college educations) are off to a rocky start to their lives. My son was laid off and came home for almost a year...he won't even date seriously because he feels like he can't support a family until he pays off his student loans.

What damn American Dream?

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Response to mtngirl47 (Reply #155)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 05:48 PM

191. Good ol' Ebay

I remember when Cheney, I think it was, advocated people make a "living" selling on eBay. It's a joke, just like almost all self-employment ideas.

You practically have to GIVE stuff away to get anything out of it. People want something for next to nothing.

It's not a valid option.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 01:28 AM

157. It May Not Be Discrimination. It's Automation.

A lot of business processes have been automated. There's less and less need for human laborers. Twenty years ago, I was paralegal, and everything that I did is now fully automated. A paralegal is obsolete.

I got out of the Paralegal profession 13 years ago. I re-trained myself for an entirely new career field. If I had not done that, I would not be employable today.

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Response to Yavin4 (Reply #157)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 05:42 PM

190. I have been reading a lot of this kind of argument lately

Automation has little or nothing to do with it. Washington trade policies have EVERYTHING to do with this mess. MILLIONS of jobs have been sent overseas and on purpose in order to undermine living standards here.

Computers and automation are minor reasons.

Your argument simply sounds like pure fantasy, with nothing to back it up. It sounds like a diversion away from the real cause.

And age discrimination is REAL. You obviously have never faced it. BTW, I retrained, too, and can't get back into my field and am too old and too broke to "retrain."

I can't believe reading some of these comments.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #190)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 06:13 PM

193. Everything that I did as a Paralegal from cite checking case histories, summarizing depositions,....

prepare trial exhibits, prepare witness binders, etc. All of that can now be done with databases. There's no need for a paralegal. Heck, there's less and less need for a legal secretary.

In addition entire professions like travel agents, retail stores like music and video stores, all of them have been replaced with software.

Amazon may even replace Walmart one day.

60 minutes just did a piece about Robots taking jobs: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50138922n


As for trade policies, American consumers are more to blame than Washington pols. American consumers demand high quality products like smart phones at affordable prices.

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Response to Yavin4 (Reply #193)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 06:42 PM

195. There never were very many jobs for paralegals.

That was something that was oversold.

I still see lots and lots of openings for legal assistants/secretaries. But then again, there have always been openings for those.

Automation has little or nothing to do with the economic mess we are in. We are in the mess because of deliberate Washington policies that have sold us down the river.

Mostly what you are saying is bunk. Software isn't replacing much but is instead another alternative. People still buy books, CDs, DVDs, etc., because they actually OWN the stuff rather than rent it.

You are living in a fairytale land when you think there is no age discrimination. You sound like a neoliberal apologist. I have nothing further to say to you.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #195)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 06:50 PM

196. Your Beef is with the American Consumer

They demand higher and higher quality products at affordable prices. Hence, there is a massive squeeze on costs, and labor costs are the prime targets.

As for software not replacing jobs, you're misinformed. There are no more Tower records. Barnes & Noble is fading away fast. B. Dalton booksellers is gone. Blockbuster is gone.

As for Legal Assistants and secretaries, those jobs are obsolete. It's just takes law firms a much longer time to adapt to technology.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 02:56 AM

160. This thread is making me cry. So sad. This country is fucked up.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 03:55 AM

162. The American worker embraced all of this mayhem because they have been denied and/or rejected

 

understanding. We are appallingly under-educated and disinterested, and so we lack the skills to see what is happening around us. Learning has been supplanted by training and even that has steadily deteriorated as profit-seeking becomes the driving force of those who do the training.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 04:08 AM

163. If I remember correctly older non-college educated white males still vote republican

by a large margin.
Maybe that will change, I hope so.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 08:42 AM

169. K & R

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 09:08 AM

170. According to Republican dogma

The Boomers will be working the registers at fast food outlets as a way to pass the time in their dotage. I can't believe they haven't offered seniors the Soylent Green option.
Will there be a gray revolution where seniors haul bank executives into the streets for whippings and firing squads?

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 10:43 AM

173. Just Adding A Personal Anecdote

I know a woman, 60-ish, who was laid off a year and a half ago, no fault of her own. She has applied for jobs every weekday since to no avail. She is competent, experienced and very personable, and until recently, in perfect health. There is no reason she would not be a desirable employee for any business. She has spent her retirement savings and may lose her condo. Lately the stress and frustration has taken its toll and she has been ill for weeks. This is what the cult of greed is doing to us.

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Response to Loubee (Reply #173)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:15 AM

177. Thanks for posting and Welcome to DU. I call what has happened in this

 

country "OBSCENE" and, try as I might, find the Dems really are at best the 'lesser of two evils.' The last time the Dems included a 'full employment' plank in their platform was 1976, for fuck's sake. Full employment is so passe, so un-hip.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 10:47 AM

174. Absolutely.

I'm in my early 50s and most of my friends and family (90%) have lost their job, or have been unemployed already for a couple of years and cannot find a living wage job at all. Of course, all of us have pre-existing conditions and health problems from working for the past 35 yrs.
Every time I hear the GOP talk about raising the retirement age, I see RED.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:10 AM

176. As Mittfalca would say, "Why don't they just live off their investments?"

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Response to valerief (Reply #176)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 12:08 PM

180. Or, "borrow from their parents"?



How the other .01% live

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 01:36 PM

186. Opposite Problem

We have the opposite problem where I work. Because our industry was in huge decline for about 15 years in the 80s and 90s, we have a big gap between the older workers and younger workers. We are working hard to retain the older workers while we are developing the younger workers. We have a group that meets periodically to discuss options for retaining older workers. We've made changes to the pension program, offered an option 32 hour work week, and in some cases have started giving retention bonuses.

Another company I worked at many years ago exploited the age discrimination issue in a clever way. They highered old engineers let go by bigger companies trying to make room for younger staff. They then turned around and contracted them back to the companies that let them go. It was a weird dynamic.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:45 AM

203. What a heartbreaking thread.

I wish the best for everyone looking for work-- I wish I could say something more helpful or offer something better than sympathy.

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Response to BlueCheese (Reply #203)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 10:59 AM

205. The Problem Is A Major Change In The Employer Mindset On Many Levels.

At DOL you see many trends the media does not cover or discuss and in fact hides from the general public. The labor stats are pretty much useless the way they are designed. And conservatives have done a lot to make what they tell the public more meaningless. Business interests threw out the social contract and began to view workers as really unnecessary evils and just another resource. Workers were no longer partners but expendable resources. And the employers new mindset is that they need to eliminate as many workers as possible and pay them as little as possible. Only a return to the previous mindset of employees as valuable assets will change the situation.

Such a situation has allowed the business community and business interests to define the conversation wholly to their favor. The ageist thing really began to blossom after Reagan even though it existed long before Reagan became president.

Based on my view of where labor and employment is today everything is a mess and convoluted. And workers face a world that is more of a gauntlet than anything I have seen.

So you are correct my post is depressing, but the story must be told and people who work must now begin to find ways to assert their rights as human being. Workers are NOT slaves and employers and business owners do NOT have the right to do whatever they want to their employees. Getting a paycheck does not mean you give up all your rights and your life and your dignity.

We have descended into a form of feudalism which is no more than slavery. Having a work force that has to beg to even live is no way to run an economy. And most older workers are now beyond begging for decent employment.

The electorate's anti union, anti labor and anti government sentiment is the biggest obstacle for redress of grievances against tyrannical employers. Conservatives and the GOP have succeeded in creating hatred for the very entity that can keep the economy fair and that is the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. FDR fully understood the federal and state government's role in the economy. And he used that power to reign in abuses. He was hated for that by powerful business interests and the rich.

Until the working class turns much farther left or progressive working conditions will continue to go downhill. What is most sad is that too many workers voted against their interests over time. And many older workers who now suffer the most were anti union, anti labor and anti government. Now they are out in the cold.

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Response to TheMastersNemesis (Reply #205)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 11:28 AM

206. At bottom it was Washington policies which laid the groundwork for the mess

Not voters, not workers, not technology, but crackpot Milton Friedman economic/political ideology taking hold of our politicians is what has created this disaster. It began in earnest during the Reagan era, and the poison has infiltrated BOTH political parties.

It could be reversed, but Congress is so compromised, the chances of reversal are slim or none.

It's a tragedy that the people you supposedly vote for don't actually represent you.

More:

http://americawhatwentwrong.org/share_main/

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #206)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 05:16 PM

208. I Agree With Your Post

Sadly Clinton enabled many of those policies by passing NAFTA. It could have never passed if Clinton had not supported free trade as it was designed. Democrats who resisted were beaten down and many Democrats lost as a result as well. The Milton Friedman ideology has been a worse disaster than than most workers even know.

And things could be reversed with tariffs and penalties and higher taxes for outsourcing and offshoring companies. And you are sadly right about Congress.

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