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Tier 5 Extension and “The Stubborn Facts” – Where Do We Go From Here?

My fellow Massachusetts man, John Adams, once said “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” Millions and millions of Americans who lost their job through no fault of their own and who having exhausted (or are about to exhaust) their benefits are coming to terms with the stubborn fact that, with the final adjournment of the 111th Congress no immediate help is coming for the long term unemployed. Many of those who have exhausted their benefits and still remain unemployed – the 99er’s – are understandably becoming more and more despondent, wondering if there is anyone in power that understands and cares about their situation.

This is the first in what is to be a series of articles that could be broadly titled “where do we go from here?” as we look at the future of how this nation will respond to the greatest unemployment crisis since the 1930’s. Perhaps we should start with recognition of what my friend John Adams called “the stubborn facts.”

The first thing that has to be done is to choose the attitude one has to adopt in this situation. There are some who have, quite understandably, thrown up their hands in disappointment and despair and accepted that a Tier 5 will never occur and are now planning their lives accordingly. Others are suggesting that while the failure to get either Congressional or, for that matter, Presidential attention to the plight of the 99ers should not be accepted and the fight for the 99ers should continue. Perhaps there is a middle ground. Perhaps a sensible and realistic approach should be to assume that a Tier 5 is a long way off and plan accordingly yet at the same time continue to agitate for a Tier 5 when the next Congress begins in lrss than two weeks, on January 5.

As we enter what Shakespeare once called “the winter of our discontent,” there are some more stubborn facts that need to be confronted. This is presented as an overview here and each section will be discussed in a separate article in the coming days

Recognition of the Political Landscape of 2011 – Even though the start of the next Congress is less than two weeks away, it will be a far different U.S. Congress than the one that passed into history on December 22. In the U.S. Congress that just ended, the Democrats in the Senate had 55 Democratic Seats plus the two independents that usually voted with them for a total of 57, the Republicans had 43 Senate Seats. In the next Congress, the Democrats will control 53 seats (including the Independents) and the Republicans will have 47 Seats.

In the Congress just ended, the Democrats had 255 Seats to the 180 held by Republicans in the House of Representatives. In the Congress to start on January 5, the Democrats will have 193 seats, to the 242 held by Republicans.

The elections of November 2 showed the biggest turnover of seats in the House of Representatives in 80 years. It has fundamentally changed the political landscape and thus what may have been legislatively possible in 2010 will extremely hard to achieve in 2011. In a future article we will discuss the dynamics of the incoming Congress with respect to unemployment insurance

Recognition of the need for solidarity – there is an emerging trend among the unemployed that is as troubling as it is self-destructive. Some people, still receiving unemployment benefits sometimes tend to ignore the needs of the 99ers. Given the almost insignificant growth of jobs that could put a dent in the huge unemployment crippling towns and neighborhoods all over the nation, when you think about it, most of those who lost their job through no fault of their own can really be divided into two groups; those who have exhausted their benefits, or those who will exhaust their benefits. In other words, almost all the unemployed are 99ers; some just have not gotten there yet. It is significant that the extensions that expired on November 30 are now reinstated, but any dispassionate look at the job creation that occurred in 2010 draws one to the inescapable conclusion that a significant number of those on federal tiers of unemployment extensions will simply run out of benefit weeks before they find a job. I say it again, if we are going to make progress on this issue, everyone should consider themselves a 99er, either presently or in the future.

Recognition of the need for education – We have all seen the misreporting of the renewal of unemployment extension eligibility. A surprising number of media outlets have reported that there were 13 months of benefits added for the unemployed, when of course this is about as far from accurate as can be imagined. The misinformation does not stop there. An amazing number of people that do have jobs lack a clear understanding of unemployment insurance, how it works, who gets it, and how meager the benefit amounts really are. Any effective lobbying in Congress does not start in the marble halls of the Capitol Building – it starts in the local newspaper and in discussions with neighbors, local officials, and even groups at Churches, the local diner, and any other place our neighbors get together.

Recognition of the “rules of the road” – advocacy before Congress for any bill requires a fundamental understanding of not only how Congress works, but what “levers” work best in gaining Congressional attention. No one has to work for decades in Congress to get this knowledge. But those of us who are advocating for attention to the 99ers need to have a unified message and need to stop infighting. Anyone who has attempted to deal with the many, many “99er organizations” has noticed that sometimes they spend more time criticizing the other groups than working together to advocate a unified message.

Recognition of what strategies are effective and possible – Most of the unemployed, be they receiving benefits or not, have limited resources. While some activities may be useful in building spirits one wonders how effective they are in achieving results. For example, about 100 unemployed gathered the other day in Boston before the federal office building in where Republican Senator Scott Brown has his Massachusetts state offices. The demonstration, held in the late afternoon on a bitter cold Boston day, called for Senator Brown to enact a Tier 5. There was virtually no media attention and many wondered why this protest was held when it was clear that the Senator was in Washington and that all planned legislation on unemployment insurance had occurred in this Congress. The moral; choose the battle carefully. Many have suggested a mass protest in Washington when the Congress reconstitutes itself. Not a bad idea, but when many of the unemployed are finding it hard to even keep gas in their cars to go to a job interviews (assuming they get one) is it really realistic to ask people who have limited or no income to travel hundreds if not thousands of miles to Washington DC for a protest march. Some have to scrimp and save to get a subway ticket so as good as a mass march on DC might be, is it realistic to ask the 99ers to participate?

Recognition of the possibilities – Anyone who tells you that a Tier 5 is doomed forever or, on the other hand, suggesting a Tier 5 is a certainty, is, in this writer’s opinion, perhaps allowing hope – or despair – to be transformed into solid predictions. Make no mistake about it; the battle for a Tier 5 will be hard and difficult. But there is a battle to be had here and no one who is concerned with this issue should simply leave the field because there is no certainty of outcome

Recognition of the bigger picture – We need to continue to press for realistic near term job creation programs. We need to never loose focus of the larger picture. Unemployment insurance is not the answer, jobs are the answer.

As I say, this is but a broad outline of the areas we need to work on as we gear up for the next battle for attention to the unemployed who lost their job through no fault of their own. We will be looking at these areas in more detail in the coming days. In less than two weeks those of us in the unemployment advocacy community will be starting the battle again. Despair is perhaps the easiest emotion to give in to, hope is hard work. But there is hope. Some may feel alone, isolated and even forgotten during this holiday season but they are not. Yes we who are concerned about this enormous issue did suffer a defeat with the failure to expand unemployment benefits, but we will continue the battle many of us have been working on full time for over two years and we are not going anywhere.

I stated this piece with a quote from my friend, John Adams, so perhaps I should end with one; “If we do not lay out ourselves in the service of mankind whom should we serve?

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69 comments to Tier 5 Extension and “The Stubborn Facts” – Where Do We Go From Here?

  • 1
    Mark-Tenn says:

    Great article Michael and I look forward to your future articles discussing each of these topics in detail. Have a great day and thanks again for all you have done for us all.

    • 1.1

      Hi Mark

      Appreciate your kind words, Mark. As I said, we only have less than two weeks till Congress comes back so we need to start thinking about how to be most effective now

      Hope you have a peaceful holiday

      Michael Colliss

  • 2
    sjclark113 says:

    Excellent Michael, just excellent!

    • 2.1

      Hi Sj

      Well it is more of a tentative outline of things we need to be looking at….its less than 2 weeks before Congress comes back and we need to gear up for the battle

      Michael Colliss

  • 3
    AL says:

    Mike I have been reading your articles since I became a 99er back in June 2010. Its been hard but your words and encouragement has kept me going. I have tried and tried to land a job from New York to Florida and nothing. We have got to do something….Happy holidays if anyone out of congress deserves it, it’s you…

  • 4
    Steve Brad says:

    Michael it’s really beyond that this president took a victory lap, when in effect he thought that by bribing the GOP that this would enhance his standing around the world. Every Block of american society was been somewhat appeased except the 99er world. Gays they received the passage of “D’on’t ask D’on’t tell, The dream act is receiving much reconization but the plight of millions that are under employed has been ignored. How could Obama be so happy, when this main issued has’nt been even dented. President Obama has lost my favor 200 Billion dollar pric tagg to get his agenda and accomplishment passed in the lame duck session of congress. While a fraction of that could afforded a national Jobs programs with additional weeks of unemployment.
    My last Point is that the 9/11 responders got it right by storming the office of senator Tom Curburn a coward and focal disturber in congress and rushed his office and exposed him for the coward he was, he capitulated soon after. Most of the GOP senator’s they are just as spineless, when confronted the only one that seems to avoid that fact is our president. I think Obama, should get out of his was bubble and see the pain and plight, that he is not addressing and acknownledge issues that are not dear to his agenda. Let’s be clear the president through his first two years, never really focused in on Jobs and the economy and that has been a major problem.

    • 4.1

      Steve…

      As usual, you make very good and valid points

      I think that one of the main problems – if not the main problem – has been an almost mystical detachment of the president from Congress. This sort of zen like posture of sitting passive and waiting for something to happen on his part (Build it and they will come) has been, to say the least, frustrating. So I agree that it is hard to see the President as an activist. History has taught us that successful presidents are those that got really involved in what was happening in Congress on a daily basis, not watching, involved.Yes, the extensions that expired on November 30 needed to be renewed, but the President himself called the GOP Senators hostage takers and he paid the ransom, as you point out with massive tax breaks.

      I agree the 911 workers showed what could be done, but it is hard to ask someone who is wondering if he will have food this week or the rent payment on January 1 to travel to DC. We are not helpless however and I ask your patience as I work on articles and suggestions in the coming days

      Try to have a peaceful holiday my friend!

      Michael Colliss

      • 4.1.1
        Mrs. Hart says:

        Michael

        I agree that is difficult for the families affected by long term unemployment to organize and travel to Washington with limited funds, especially during the winter time.

        Hopefully advocates for the long term unemployed will construct some kind of campaign that educates and effectively communicates to our nation the reality and impact of growing long term unemployment.

        Documentaries need to be made portraying the hardships of this new American landscape.
        (Short spots on cable news networks depicting someone shuffling emails from a printer to a Senator’s office may not be fully depicting the surprisingly quick downward spiral from being a job holder to homeless).

        Please keep the faith and try, everyone, to have a good holiday.

    • 4.2
      Tim says:

      “How could Obama be so happy, when this main issued has’nt been even dented.”

      @Steve Brad: When you say “this main issue,” you are talking about yourself and all of us who believe that this is the most important issue facing America right now. But that isn’t true of the general public. I wonder what percentage of Americans know what a 99er is. Today on Huffington Post a liberal posted five reasons why he could no longer count on Obama as his leader. The plight of the 99ers was not even listed among the five most important issues in that person’s mind. So I would say that one of the main things we need to do is to make the American public aware of the desperation which the 99ers are facing. People simply do not know the magnitude of the problem.

  • 5
    jim burge says:

    All the extensions will at some point become exhausted. And the fact will still be that there will still be no jobs.”Let them eat Cake”. seems to be the motto. I am convinced that a Tier 5 will never be enacted. at the end of next year alot of people will be out of jobs,money,U.I. and caring Americans that still have a job, and an uncaring govt.These extensions have simply postponed the inevitable. A new class will be joining the homeless.

  • 6
    Steve Brad says:

    Michael Enjoy the Holidays as well, and I will also say that your articles have helped the 99er Community, during trying and difficult times.

    Thank you
    Steve

  • 7
    Unemployed to the Max says:

    I hate to be a downer, but the whole process of what has (or has NOT) gone down in Washington has made me ill. I tend to stray away from politics. It is a dirty game where dirty actions take place, neither something that I wish to deal with. Being in the situation I have been in the last two years, I have been paying all too much attention the last few months.

    As a result, the actions of the people we put in charge, including the president, has made me sick. It is a foregone conclusion that these people who write our rules are terrible people, but to see it actually take place with little to no media buzz has made me less patriotic.

    I wish the best for those of you who wish to continue this fight, as this fight has been going on for ages between the powerful/corrupt and us “normal” folk. I wish this because I have lost all faith in our government.

    • 7.1
      Tim says:

      It may just be human nature. Was is ever any better in the American government? Is it better anywhere else? You may just have to accept this reality.

      • 7.1.1
        Pepper99 says:

        Tim,
        I go way back to the 50s (Eisenhower v Stevenson) so my picture of politics in Ammerica may be a bit broader than yours. To the best of my knowledge, however, it has never been a “clean” place to work. And that goes back to the beginning of the Republic which I’m not old enough to recall. Politics is dirty business. The difference primarily begins with what used to called statesmen is now known as a politician. Same pig, different lipstick, I guess.

        But I recall the Dirksens, the Johnsons, Goldwater, Nixon, Kennedy, Humphrey, McCarthy…OK, Nixon’s a different animal entirely. But it was his downfall that birthed what we now see and hear 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Everybody’s opinion, view, spin, and what have you is vying for space and readership. Lack of trust in authority and government. Ask a question, get an answer became demand an answer with a question and followup like a crocodile. Dig, dig, dig. As McLuhan wrote, the medium is the message: TV. Which led to the “web” as he saw it years before it was designed and marketed. He barked about a global village and, sure enough, here in 2010 we have that in our laps, in our face constantly.

        We insist on it, the networks and the web provide it. We are insatiable for “news.” In the day, there were the big three, PBS, and local stations. Once Watergate broke the seal, all hell broke loose and we wanted the dirt, the down and disgusting, the deal. The monster had life. And he ripped through the underbrush in Washington, the Pentagon, the CIA, the Military-industrial complex, the war, the Kennedy assassinations, MLK, Jr. and civil rights. Everybody with a camera, a pad and paper, and access to a phone became a journalist. A Deep Throat. Someone on the inside. Just shitloads of money passed through hands like running water: advertisers, media, authors, speakers, and, of course, politicians.

        My generation wanted them all front page, bold type in handcuffs and a raincoat over their heads going off to prison. We trusted no one but the messengers. The great reporters (Cronkite, Huntley and Brinkley, Jennings, Reasoner) faded and in came the new newsman and newswoman. It progressed so hard, so fast that there wasn’t room anymore. Hello, Cable. Hello, worldwide web. Faster, more, deeper, quicker, ceaseless. Our statesmen passed, politicians appeared and dug in for the battles you witness now. Just like our society it isn’t pretty, polite, or particularly interesting. Hype, sex, controversy, intrigue, image, bullshit. But we’ll never go backwards. Every American is entitled and empowered to publish it, print it, praise it, and punish it. Whatever “it” is.

        The great irony, to me, is that these goons and slugs, profiteers and conniving jackals who “represent” Americans in government refer to each other as “my distinguished this” or “my dear colleague on the other side of the aisle that.” What pompous, arrogant bastards we elect. In my time, at your age, when politicians spoke that way, it had some meaning and dignity, even though you knew that behind closed doors and in the secret chambers of the Capital all kinds of shenanigans and corruption were happening. It just spilled out onto the street, spread throughout the worlds of business and banking, and had a kazillion sycophants ready to track down the “big one” that could make their journalistic bones. Ask Woodward and Bernstein.

        • 7.1.1.1
          Tim says:

          Pepper -

          I wonder how old you imagine me to be. I first lived in Illinois when Adlai Stevenson was governor, so that will give you a clue. I agree with you to some degree about the changing role of the media and the arrival of an entire nation stricken permanently with ADHD.

          However, that in my mind is not the principal cause of our fast-sinking nation. Rather, I would assign that role to money, greed, and corruption. It is an addiction which has completely overwhelmed the entire world, to the point that we have forgotten what makes life worth living: helping each other and learning to place more value on the things of the spirit than the things of the physical world.

          Do you remember Socrates: “There are two patterns set before them in nature: the one, blessed and divine, the other godless and wretched; and they do not see, in their utter folly and infatuation, that they are growing like the one and unlike the other, by reason of their evil deeds; and the penalty is, that they lead a life answering to the pattern which they resemble. And if we tell then that unless they depart from their cunning, the place of innocence will not receive them after death; and that here on earth they will live ever in the likeness of their own evil selves, and with evil friends – when they hear this, they in their superior cunning will seem to be listening to fools.”

          Which pattern, I wonder, are those who pursue the war in Iraq and that in Afghanistan coming to resemble? Or those who give unneeded tax savings to the already wealthy and nothing to those who are hungry and homeless? I think we know the answer. And so our entire nation comes to resemble that other pattern. It is happening. And in my opinion, it is too late to change the direction of our evolution. Sweep it away and start anew, if there is time and life left on this world. Happy Holidays to all. TIM

    • 7.2
      FUHBAH says:

      I don’t blame you at all because I too feel the same. I have also lost faith and trust in our government and I truly believe at this point in time our system of government has become totally inept incapable of managing the problems and challenges that lie before all of us including those who are employed because in the long run it affects everyone involved.

      I hate to be a pessimist but this feeling I have inside that things have gone terribly wrong in our country is a sign of the ever changing times we are living in. The selfish me attitude era has taken over to replace the fabric of the very principles of our moral fabric to which we were based and founded on under these values. This nation is gradually slipping into a downward spiral of self destruction.

      The fight continues for the less fortunate and it is a struggle and a battle for our very own existence and acceptance in a society that has grown to become ever more complicated in every aspect of our lives. The only positive hope we have is in continued prayers and hope in God that we are able to go forth to withstand the obstacles that may get in the way of trying our best in life because it’s all we can do. I only wish good to those who are going through these difficult times, may you find peace and understanding.

  • 8
    al99er says:

    Michael – I have been reading your articles since I became a 99er back in June 2010. Its been hard but your words and encouragement has kept me going. I have tried and tried to land a job from New York to Florida and nothing. We have got to do something….Happy holidays if anyone out of congress deserves it, it’s you…

  • 9
    1manthemediafearswillspeak says:

    Hey, they believe we will forget this attrocity, spineless is a compliment to these elite rearend boils, They have not heard a single word, or expressed a care in the world for any of us 99ers, Inside im laughing, cause alot of these elites havent realized there house of cards is falling and If i live long enough, they will be hearing a feirce dialog that they have avoided for years, they can skate and skirt the issues, but god knows facts are stubborn things, Facts are on our side and If spoken of with any accountability, these elites , all of them, well they wont be sleeping with both eyes shut for years, somebody will get them, one by one, there days are numbered. The media in general fears a real discussion from even young accountable sheperd as me,
    I will open up pandoras box soon, and all you elites pukes will be dealt with. Eye for an Eye, One nation my arse. They dont know whats coming. A responsible man is a man getting paid, I almost forgot, isnt that what they say they want? These theives dont want a responsible people, But they are gonna see some in action. All for our kids. I dont have any, but care about many. I was one while they deviated from gods plan. The law is corrupt and its time for the real law to be implemented. Our world here in america will change, WE JUST NEED FOLKS WITH TEMERITIES. Im embarassed by our puppets. None of them speak for this AMERICAN.

    • 9.1
      Tim says:

      We have a choice whether to go into the struggle with the attitude of Gandhi and ML King, Jr., or the attitude of the Hutus against the Tutsis, or anywhere in between. We are capable of teaching the United States the meaning of our union as a nation, if we act with reason and justice in the face of injustice.

  • 10

    2011 is going to be crazy, the dollar will be worthless and stores will only accept foreign currencies, gold and silver..stores are already doing it..people need to wake up because the government is not going to tell us..they didnt save the louisanians during the hurricane katrina so they wont save the whole us states during the final economic collapse..look it up..its already happening to greece..the day the dollar died..its happening right under our noses..people are buying gold and silver over us dollars..that should tell you something..42million americans depend on food stamps because they can’t pay for food and its getting worser..that is a big wake up call

    • 10.1
      Tim says:

      I would suggest that you calm down a little bit – the dollar isn’t going to vaporize that soon. Things will probably deteriorate much more slowly – and who knows how far? Maybe we’ll have a national recovery – it’s possible.

  • 11
    Steve Brad says:

    the president knowns the plight of the 99ers and because he choices to ignore us, tells me alot about his sense of leadership. Throughout history many atrocities have occured and not acknowleding them does not make them less tragic. Obama critized the Bush administrations lack of response to hurricane Katrina. This inaction on his behalf is just as criminal, eventually the bush administration made some adjustment thou not nearly enough for the magnitude of the situation. We are eight months in from the last passing of unemployment extensions, when we as the long term unemployed were cast aside to make the deal to extend benefits for everbody else but the 99ers.
    The Bush Era tax Cuts was the second such inaction on the behalf of Obama without a pivot toward addressing and remedying the problem.

  • 12
    John says:

    Michael, this is an excellent article and I look forward to reading the ones that are coming. You have been a beacon of truth in a very dark night. For the next couple of days I am going to go be with my family and try to enjoy the holday as best I can, I will try not to let my frustration show. My family knows exactly what is going on with me and all of the 99ers, because I tell them. However, for just a couple of days I need to back away and regroup my thoughts, not think about all this. I am not giving up! and I never will (even if I did suddenly get a job, I know what everyone is going through). I am however letting my batteries recharge over the holiday. I hope everyone has a great Christmas! I know it is hard, just remember, it is about being with family and loved ones. Peace to all of you. Merry Christmas

  • 13
    Gregory L says:

    The comment by pepper was really good stuff. I have a problem with the entire notion of a tier 5, though I am totally in favor of it. Just having a tier five is not enough. UI needs to be available for alot longer than 26 weeks and alot longer than 99 weeks. There needs to be a way to secure unemployment for the entire duration of this economic fiasco. The millionaires became billionaires by eliminating labor costs.

    Tax em real heavy and turn em back into poor millionaires. Then take that money and give back to the people that they took it from- the american workforce. Looking at it this way, even tier 5 is a form of disrespect. It’s like if someone set your house on fire and the government says you got so many days to rebuild or else we gonna come and bulldoze it. Americans need time to restructure. The problem is deeper than just finding a job.

    Even the housing crisis. Is it a housing crisis or is it that we don’t need as many houses anymore because the jobs that pay for them do not exist? Last but not least, I am dumbfounded by the election results. It is almost as if the american people committed suicide again (Bush). The American Revolution didn’t have as much cause to fight as we do right now.

  • 14
    endoftheworld says:

    Wow. I am surprised there are no comments at all today.
    I guess folks have been rendered speechless or got something better to do than sit and trawl the i-net all day.
    Oh well. Merry Christmas to those who celebrate this holiday and have a good day for those who don’t.
    It’s another beautiful sunny day here in southern NE, tho no snow at all so it doesn’t feel like x-mas in any way shape or form. It’s almost warm enough to go for a bike ride! hmm.

  • 15
    Mike says:

    Excellent Article.
    I wonder how the Republican party can say on one hand that they want to control spending and not be adding to the national deficit in order to protect our children, when discussions of extending unemployment or expanding other programs that help the middle class or should I say the hapless slave class and then add/spend $700B-$1T to the deficit serving their own interests. It’s ok for our children to have to pay for their tax breaks and bonuses, but not to lend a hand to Americans that need it NOW not next month or next year. Double standards, two faced, self-serving, selfish motives are no longer a whisper from them, but a full blown scream.

  • 16
    Lisa says:

    Our government does not know how to fix this broken economy. So what to they do? They try to turn the country against the long term unemployed. Many people and the media say we are lazy, drug addicts, and partying with the unemployment money. Say things like if they continue to give unemployment, you will never look for work. As if $300 a week is a boat load of money. I have never came across one single 99er that did not want to work. In fact, they prefer work over unemployment. For the past few years the layoffs trumps job creation. People will tell you after 99 weeks you should have found a job. As if the economy actually turned around within those 99 weeks. Ever notice how vague these people talk? Corporations are hiring, the rich create jobs, there are jobs out there, etc. Yet they never give you detailed information about these hiring corporations or give you the names of these rich people holding all of the available jobs. I believe it will get to the point were the government will not be able to ignore the 99ers. The number grows every single week.

  • 17
    suri says:

    Michael – I appreciate your steadfastness in word and deed !! You have been my ‘candle’ in the dark for many weeks now and there is no way to fully express the depth of feeling you have extended in your articles as well as the personal postings. You have given us your valuable time and insight into some twisted dealings with Congress.

    I know it’s my ‘Pollyanna’ thing showing, but I almost believe the problem is sooo HUGE with 99ers that it CAN’T POSSIBLY CONTINUE TO BE IGNORED?? I agree that many issues with 99ers have not been presented clearly enough and in a focused manner for lots of various reasons.

    I WILL NOT lose all faith over our country or our President over the flaws and faults of the few cold-hearted elected officials. I LOVE what the 9/11 group did and showed us the way to success!!

    The answer, as it usually is, will be multi-faceted I am sure. The recovery picking up steam will certainly help. However, I am unfortunately certain that millions will remain ‘outside’ the economic future of this country and will REQUIRE and NECESSITATE a Tier 5, etc. Can various options be presented to different age groups, can training and education be offered, can community work be involved — Yes ! The proper attention to these circumstances is looong overdue and evidently must be EXPECTED to be explained in detail to those whose ability to SEE OR HEAR the reality of the ABSOLUTE ABSENCE of jobs or any opportunity!!

    Bottom line, we are a great nation with room at the inn for any and all citizens needs to be met with dignity and compassion. The 99ers should not be made to feel they are ‘begging’ for their survival lifeline UNEMP INSURANCE BENEFITS to continue when the unemp Crisis has been largely manipulated and manmade by the wealthy, big banks, and Wall Street. Wishing holiday peace and goodwill even if our spirits have been dampened and crushed many times this year. 2011 has a fresh, clean slate with which to write our future! Thank you, Michael, and may you KNOW how much your efforts and caring are celebrated !!

    P.S. IN did get unemp ‘updated’ and paid for back weeks before Christmas, thank goodness for many friends and neighbors. Local newspaper did fine article on 12-23 regarding an unemp local college professor who couldn’t even afford bus ticket to see daughter in IL (had been unemp l yr) She received donations of $400 and an offer of a part-time job with H & R Block for tax season!! Blessings all…

    • 17.1
      Tim says:

      Suri – Happy Holidays to you. I was glad to read your comment and to see that you are still keeping your spirits up. Let us hope for good things in the New Year. TIM

  • 18
    al99er says:

    This sucks. In plain words I am a hair away from robbing something!!!!!

    • 18.1
      Lisa says:

      I feel your pain al99er. Please don’t do anything crazy. We will get through this together. I am never going to give up and feel like going to DC and march by myself. Hang in there because this is not over by any stretch of the imagination. You enjoy the holidays. We are all in the same boat. Keep safe and strong.

    • 18.2
      Tim says:

      Rob if you have to (like Jean Valjean!), but don’t hurt anyone. And I think that you’ll almost always find that there is a second solution which does not involve robbery. Best wishes and Happy Holidays, Al.

  • 19

    Merry Christmas Michael! Thank you and Steve Ross & the rest of the Staff for your support of the Unemployed & 99ers. Sincerely, Ken (99er)

  • 20
    PDS NICKELS says:

    Michael, this is one of your greatest articles and as far as I’m concerned this is your “Christmas present” to 99ers because it says what needs to be heard by all of us, especially those of us who are activists for 99ers.

    I’m going to post a link to this on our UWAG forum and encourage ALL members (and lurkers) to read it!

    I hope that in the near future you will give us a comprehensive article about the most effective means of lobbying Congress (and the press) on this issue.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family, Michael, and thanks on behalf of all those 99ers and their families who read your articles and appreciate your wisdom.

    • 20.1

      Hi Mr. Nickels!

      Well it is almost Christmas here on the east coast. The thing that people need to remember is that even though things are tough for millions and millions, they are not alone. Thousands of people who are not personally involved, in the sense that they do not need unemployment insurance or are retired, have become involved. You see them in every part of this struggle from making donations to food banks, helping people stay in their homes, and calling attention again and again and again to not consider millions of people acceptable “collateral damage” in the political/economic battles in DC. I remain convinced, through all the negativity, through all the battles we have fought and will fight in the future that there will come a time when what Lincoln called “the better angels of our nature” will prevail. It is a terrible crime to rob people of hope and we cannot and must not allow that to happen.

      So I hope that people will – as much as possible – try to wring out a little peace and quiet and above all hope. Those of us in the unemployment advocacy community are not going anywhere and will not go anywhere until we get to the bedrock of the middle class – that every American who wants a job can get one and will be helped by their government as they struggle as victims of the Great Recession.

      So, for many it is a gray holiday and a sad one. But it cannot be allowed to be one without hope and resolve to continue the struggle

      Michael Colliss

      • 20.1.1
        suri says:

        Yes, Michael, this IS Christmas, although it is changed as we are by the undeniable alterations in our lives, some for the better, some for the worse… We really appreciate the simple joy of the companionship of seeing our children as the young adults they are, with their own lives and spouses carrying on many family traditions. There has been some release these last two Christmases from the commercial present giving that allows the holiday less stress and ‘the gift representing your saying “I Love You” BECOMES SAYING I Love You !’

        However bittersweet, I must admit to some resentment that we who always played the game of life by the rules have ended up ‘locked out’ and forced to ‘cash out’ before our time. I feel guilty to compare my regrets when so many are clearly facing MUCH WORSE and would only be so OPEN among those who understand how much of a daily grind being unemp is!

        I will be glad for this holiday to pass as my memory goes so often to so much happier ones that were free of worry, for the most part, for want or need for adequate food and funds for simple seasonal enjoyments such as a meal out at a restaurant, tips for service or chartity, or ANY purchases not REQUIRED!

        Wow, so much for my pity party. Didn’t mean to go down that road again. We unemp MUST find a way to enlighten the public, as you say, who really do think we all got another 13 months of unemp ext! Several people TOLD me that just tonight?? What ‘good news’??

        So, yes, this has been a blue Christmas with the glass only HALF full in many areas of life for millions of unemp with and without benefits. Please continue to educate us and direct our actions to more clearly align with the goal of returning the lifeboats for those of us who are and WILL BE 99ers!! The legion of 99ers are too talented and with too much ability to offer our country to be discarded. The waste of human potential is just heartbreaking to me… I wish you the wisdom to find peace and satisfaction from your assistance to all of us here.

  • 21
    Mutual says:

    I wander if we all could hold fundraising, or some unemployment advocate agencies for donations to go towards greyhound? May be a long shot, figuring out who and how many exactly is going from what cities or towns to washington, because we would need enough people who agree to go from certain towns/cities and then arrange charter bus/greyhound to go from there to washington. First though, is getting it all out to the masses of unemployed in towns/cities, and esp. harder to the rural country areas like my own, upstate SC. Definetly a long shot, and hard work, but definetly not impossible, and anything that is worth anything is not going to be easy, but WE CAN DO IT!

    • 21.1
      Mutual says:

      Also, we don’t have very much time… That’s if we want to be there when congress reconvenes. I believe most of us already know that though.

      • 21.1.1
        Mutual says:

        Another thing!
        On Facebook there is a page “The White House”, (and even most senators and representatives have a facebook page also) that we can post videos (yes, videos- If you have a camera or video recorder) about our current situations. This could ultimately come in extremely handy when we all organize (including donations possibly to the organizers of this) and put into action our Washington DC protests, etc. There’s close to 900,000 people that have “liked” that page,people will see it, and it would definetly get the word out, and people mention it to their friends, who mention it to their friends (unemployed or not; it makes no difference at this point. Everyone should get involved!) and so on… Get what I’m saying?
        Yes, it would cause an uproar. Yes, we might end up being banned from those pages, deleted etc. But, it should not stop us from doing what we all know is morally right! Let me know what you think…
        Also, stress to these people the importance of and interest of created jobs programs specifically for the unemployed. Let’s educate and inform. Finally, be polite but firm, do not allow yourself to be pushed over to the side, but at the same time we can get the message out clearly without unnecessary anger, negativity, and violence. It will only further impede our efforts to be portrayed in a negative way. We need JOBS, but until those resources are available, we need HELP not a handout, in the form of unemployment insurance assistance, which is our best shot at tiding over the economy with double cash back revenue, until that time.

  • 22
    Lisa says:

    Merry Christmas & Happy New Year
    *.* . + _/\_. * . * .. + . * . * . * * .. * *
    *. +. * ),” ( . * . + * . +. + . * .+ . * + . * . * . * .
    ………..{_}
    ……… /……\\…………_/\_
    …….. /……..\\………*>,”,”,”< + * *+and love,
    … /….”…………”…\\…*……..*
    .. /_/……`”`…..\\\\_\\..* + ., * * , +*
    ..{__}##{ ]##{__}\
    ..(_/\\\\\\\|\\\\\_/\\_)\..Have a Joyous Christmas Season!
    …….|___|___|\\……..+ * , . * ** * , . * +
    ………..|–|–|\\\…….+,*+..*
    ……….(__)`(__)\\\\\\
    ¤°.¸¸.•´¯`**’¤°.¸¸.•´¯`*¤°
    …………..MERRY CHRISTMAS……………..

  • 23
    j-tho says:

    two points ~
    1/ i personally believe that unemployment comp should be automatically renewed during this crisis for anyone who remains unable to find work UNTIL the unemployment rate again drops to some more reasonable rate that proves that jobs are coming back. i don’t know what that rate should be ~ 7-8%?
    2/ has anyone done a study of the suicide rate among the long-term unemployed during this crisis?

    i lost my job in a layoff in may2008; got a new job last june but my unemp had run out months before ~ and then i was laid off again in sept. so i’m starting the cycle over again ~ but i’m still a 99er at heart.

  • 24
    Vern says:

    Michael,
    Enjoyed your article and its premises.

    I am of the belief that, the louder the wail, the more likely we are to be heard. That said, I feel we are a loose affinity with no organization to the club. Members will probably forget once they secure a job. After all, that is the goal (I think) and point of conjecture. It also is a point our leaders are aware of.
    However long or short our membership is, it appears that now is an apogee. With the unofficial numbers at 4-5 million give or take a few. We should be heard!
    As I am sure there are Democrats and Republicans in our midst,this should not be an issue. I also suggest, a multiplier factor, as everybody must know at least one person. Now were at 8-10 million. Of course that number will increase with every person allied to the cause. Within which may be key people,we need to define.

    So we appear to have a lot of passenger’s but we just dont know where the vehicle is parked. Hence, it is easy to ignore the tour, we are trying to take, to those who can help us.
    It is easier still to be lost in this quagmire, when you are trying to survive on a daily basis. Define me as a passenger who would like to do more. Looking for the organization to advance our position. Can we create the vehicle before it is too late? I hope so!
    Thank you for stepping to the forefront!

    Respectfully yours. Vern

  • 25
    G.H. says:

    I too am a 99er. Despondent doesn’t hardly describe it. Some days I wonder if it’s better that I don’t wake up the next morning. Have lived with friends for 2 years. Not an ideal situation. Have continued to send in applications. I swallowed my pride and got food stamps. They only give them for 3 months. THen, it’s back to stand in the line at 5:30 AM to make sure that I get seen by a bunch of surly, inept, nasty state workers…missing teeth and a few marbles. I don’t understand a government that just gave BILLIONS and BILLIONS of dollars to:
    1. the wealthy
    2. Pakistan
    3. Iraq
    and one that gives its own Senators and Congressmen free “socialized” medicine yet call me a free loader…it seems our government has forgotten about me/WE THE PEOPLE…a merry Christmas indeed.

  • 26
    Lori says:

    Michael, I am pleased that you’ve been fighting for all the 99ers all this time! I myself have just become one of them, having my position at a mortgage company eliminated in January 2009. My benefits have just been exhausted, and I’m lucky in that I do have some savings, but I can’t live on them indefinitely. I’ve been keeping abreast of all the legislation for quite some time, and recently read an article by V.P. Biden wherein he defended the tax deals and compromises made in order to “save people from drowning.” Unfortunately, I feel that we the 99ers were put on the Titanic by congress. We were not even given any consideration. With their average 174,000 per year salaries and countless perks and benefits, they have absolutely NO idea what it is to live paycheck to paycheck and on unemployment let alone be without any income at all upon exhaustion! It is a terrible injustice to me. The USA is the first to offer financial assistance to countries in times of disaster which I am very proud of, but what about its own citizens?? We aren’t sitting around collecting our unemployment checks, watching tv, drinking, etc. – we are actively seeking jobs and have to certify our efforts with each claim form. How dare they accuse us of that??!! I have attempted to locate a job, but have been unsuccessful. IF there have been any in the industry where my expertise lies, or any in any industry, they would have involved a 2+ hour commute each way which is unreasonable as I am a widow with a child still in school. Resumes were submitted regardless, but with no positive response. I’ve also had my resume submitted to many employers through recruiters, but have been told I would not even be interviewed because of my “over-qualification.” I have been emailing my political representatives continuously to support a Tier 5 for the 99ers, and will continue to do so. We need action now!!!

    • 26.1
      suri says:

      Lori – I’m with you on this. IF we knew then, what we know now?? I think my husband and I were in shock for perhaps the first six months after his ‘event’? Then you spend the next six months very productively and hopefully thinking a job is out there. AFTER THE FIRST YEAR of unemp and the continual downsizing of our lives and budgets while having to redeem 401 k funds the doom and gloom of the jobless reality, especially for those over 55, becomes CLEAR!!

      This country has always continued unemp extensions of INSURANCE BENEFITS when unemp was above 7% so why is this CRISIS any different?? Especially when the govt allows much of the lack of oversight and no regulation in housing and Wall Street to occur. They NEED to be ACCOUNTABLE for the results of fracturing millions of innocent lives!!

  • 27
    Deborah Brown says:

    I personally think we need to press the message hard that 99 weeks is way too long for people to go without the promised job restoration! I think we need to drive home the point that millions were not helped by the unemployment extension and are going without, barely surviving because we’re being made to wait on them to start delivering on their promise of job restoration and creation. We can’t find things that are not there (jobs). I think we need to push them very hard to make a choice to either restore jobs IMMEDIATELY or help us financially – it’s their choice.

    • 27.1
      suri says:

      Deborah Brown – I definitely KNOW we need both — lifelines extended for all 99ers and unemp to be 99ers as well as jobs programs and training or even community services. I fear for the economy to continue to limp along if we, as a nation, do not stimulate individual’s economies and as a result their cities and towns. NOT TO MENTION (lol) the ultimate GAP in providing millions of good wannbe hard-working Americans a way forward through this week and month and season to job creation becomes a reality and not a myth ‘sometime’???

    • 27.2
      Lisa says:

      I am fine with job creation, but until they start doing it, give us unemployment to survive. It’s going to take a long time to creation 15 million jobs. At least give it to us until unemployment goes below 7.2 percent. That is what Reagan did when he was in office.

  • 28
    Lori says:

    Suri and Deborah, I agree with you both! We need to press the message of the urgency of this situation with the 99ers!! As we grow in number daily, weekly, monthly, the economy will feel it. There will unfortunately be more foreclosures which will further damage the banking industry, and retailers will not be getting our business as we will be unable to afford to buy ANYTHING yet alone necessities!! And I just read a blog this morning from some republican at the house stating the 2011 focus will be to create jobs, not provide additional unemployment to the 99ers!!! Clueless! We need both!! I am in California where the unemployment rate is like 12.4% and throughout the nation, it’s at its highes!! To quote what you said, Suri, “This country has always continued unemp extensions of INSURANCE BENEFITS when unemp was above 7% so why is this CRISIS any different?? Especially when the govt allows much of the lack of oversight and no regulation in housing and Wall Street to occur. They NEED to be ACCOUNTABLE for the results of fracturing millions of innocent lives!!” No easy answer on how to do this, but we need to keep trying to get through to President Obama and Congress and get some assistance!!! Jobs are not going to be created immediately or all of us, so in the meantime, what are we supposed to do…go through our life savings, cut and budget til we can’t any longer, withdraw from our 401K plans if we’re lucky enough to have them. They may have taken my unemployment benefits, but I will NOT allow them to take away my dignity. I’m not a hateful person, but I’d soooooooooooo like some of them to lose their jobs and be ineligbile for any unemployment and see how quickly their eyes open!

    • 28.1

      Lori…

      I think I should again emphasize that we are not helpless in this struggle. I have outlined some steps in this article, and also you will see a link to an email toward the end of the article to get some information and materials which can be used toward education of the public

      Michael Colliss

  • 29
    Lori says:

    Michael – again, you are to be commended for your efforts! I know I appreciate them along with the countless other 99ers and/or soon to be 99ers!! I will research the link you mentioned – thank you! I just had lunch today with a former co-worker who is very well versed on current events, however, she had NO CLUE the 99ers were not included in the tax deal Obama signed into law. She said everything she’s read says “long term unemployed” so she assumed it included all of us. She was furious and said she will look into some additional blogs and try to make people aware. I think you’re totally right, we are NOT helpless and need to continue educating the public and making them aware so that we can get recognized and get the assistance we need. Thank you again for all of your efforts!!!

  • 30
    liz says:

    Please note: Most people are hearing that the “long-term unemployed” got an extension. Nothing is said that indicates the 99ers are not included in that. If 99ers are to get help, it is VITAL to write letters to your newspapers informing them you were left out of the expensions. Your state legislative members have web sites and email addresses. Flood their offices with letters as well. Hang in & communicate.

    • 30.1

      Hi Liz…

      Could not agree more. I have posted an article on this precise point entitled

      Tier 5 Extension – Where Do We Go From Here? Part Two – Educating the Media

      and the link is

      http://www.micmn.com/tier-v-extension-%e2%80%93-where-do-we-go-from-here-part-two-%e2%80%93-educating-the-media/9158/

      Michael Colliss

  • 31
    Robert Stone says:

    Hi Michael,

    I am so glad that someone in our Congress has taken on this issue. As I watched the accomplishments of the president this past month, I was astonished that the 99ers were not included. It dimmed my excitement for the president’s other achievements (and that of the Congress as well). Unlike some speaking up, I have been a 99er for a little longer than most. I lost my benefits back in May of ’10. I moved to Florida to help with my mom a year or so ago. I never would have imagined the job situation here! It is deplorable.

    Having a college education seems to work more against me than for me, as I am immediately rejected for service jobs, or customer service jobs at fast food restaurants or hotels. People need to know the pain and suffering we are experiencing. I have watched as I have lost all my personal possessions, my apt, car, friends, and even the basic necessities of life. I am barely hanging on to my cell phone bill: the only thing that allows employers to contact me, even though I really don’t have a way to get to interviews. I spent Xmas in bed staring at the ceiling as I spend most days when I am not combing the job sites. I have exhausted the kindness of friends/family. I hope your words fall upon sympathetic ears as I am afraid I will soon be completely homeless.

    • 31.1

      Hello Robert…

      I was a little puzzled by your statement “I am so glad that someone in our Congress has taken on this issue.” Any bill which may have existed in the Congress which just adjorned for good that has not been passed into law has simply ceased to exist. Since the new Congress has not met yet – and will not do so until January 5 – I am wondering which person in Congress you are referring to?

      Michael Colliss

    • 31.2
      suri says:

      Robert Stone – Yours is a true 99ers story! Education and experience are almost a burden due to the complete absence of employment in regular sectors AND there is NO CHANCE of ‘accepting’ lesser channels of employment as you say – it’s a joke, and I’m NOT LAUGHING! I have actually had ‘friends’ say why don’t you just get a greeter position at Wal-Mart to me, with digust in their voice!! I know in my heart they just don’t want to worry or be fearful for our unhappiness, right?? Maybe??

      I will not be so casual with the old “things will get better soon” lingo. After two years myself, I HATE TO EVEN HEAR THAT. Yeah, right, WHEN??? Being older, hubby and I will not lose our home and our children are ‘launched’ thank God, so I sometimes feel ‘guilty’ to even complain. But for ALL OF US and especially my children I HATE what has become of America, a great & proud nation, that once offered opportunity in abundance to any and all who would work to improve their lot in life and be rewarded for it. Now millions of unemp & 99ers, a league the size of half our states perhaps, stand by – kicked to the curb with no options left to maintain a foothold on the bridge to a future. What a SAD DAY?

      I’ve not been much help and apologize for my rant. It just makes me crazy when people dismiss my overwhelming concerns but is depressing to validate them also. NO WIN !

      Please discuss with Mom your situation. As a Mom, I’m sure she’s just as connected to your frustrations and it will help you both. WE WILL ALL BE STRONG TOGETHER. The hero is not any more brave than the coward, he is just brave for a little longer. Please find new hope for the New Year and, with Michael’s help and guidance, new attention and assistance to our long over-due condition with proper lifelines for all WILL BE A REALITY !

  • 32
    rjd914 says:

    my first time on this site verry good one!!! i’am also a 99er exhausted my benefits months ago paid into system 30+ yrs. i’am not lazy i’ve looked for any kind of work sorry not hiring !!! frnds.& family have been helping out bot they are also hurting we 99ers are not drinking beer watching tv etc.. for people to really think that ignorant fools where do they think we have the luxury to these things with no money at all.

    • 32.1
      Lisa says:

      Oh yeah you can be a big party animal on $280.00 a week. That is about the average amount for unemployment.

    • 32.2
      Tim says:

      rjd914 – Very few people who have thought about or investigated the situation think that the 99ers are lazy. The ones who say that are either paid provocateurs, sadistic cranks, or hurting so bad that they want to hurt others. Maybe there are a few who really don’t know. This site is exploring ways to get the message out to the public and the media so that the few well-meaning but ignorant ones can be informed of the truth. We need to work together to accomplish this task. Welcome to the site – we need everyone’s help.

  • 33
    ken says:

    the repubs demcrts and news media all alike…..

    they only protect rich who support them…..

    all leading to the new world order…….

    middle class has to wake up and get vocal or violent, it the only way…..

    we need a leader and ideas…..

    we get no support for our kids, food, gvmnt assistance, homes being lost, retirement funds gone, kids hungry, cars being repode, what else can they do to us. banks win, millionaires and billionares pay almost no taxes, it goes on and on.

    no politician will do anything for us unless we get vocal. we all have plenty of time, what can we do as a group?????

    how do we make ourselves and our problems known to the news media in a big way???

  • 34
    Mike says:

    The more jobs that become outsourced to China / overseas, the less jobs we have here. Less money for Americans. Less jobs. Less opportunities. Petty soon this country will have to start sending all of those imports back because none of us will be able to afford it. The corporations and all those who perpetuated the down fall of America’s middle class will all choke on their own greed. WE will have the last laugh!….We can create opportunities here when we demand that the products and services we use and need here be made here. America wasn’t always dependant on China for it’s clothes or Japan for it’s electronics and cars. It all used to be made right here. We need the government to step in, shut off the imports and tell those corporations to make it here or it can’t be sold here. That is the answer to the unemployment crisis. Until the government realizes this, unemployment and poverty will always be an issue here. May God’s blessings be with all of the 99Er’s and I pray that your luck will be better in 2011. (Year of the Rabbit..Prosperity)

  • 35
    Dan says:

    I think there is one “Major Point” with the re-employment problem of people 50 and above that has not been addressed. This is the “Credit Check” requirement that roughly 90% of employers currently require.
    Take for example, a person around 50 years old or above, in what they thought was a secure,middle management position, with a salary of roughly 70k to 100k. This person would have been known as an average “Middle Class” citizen.Think of the bills this type of person would have had. Let’s say a mortgage,a few credit cards,a car loan and maybe a few loans for children they put through college! Plus utilities for a home or apartment. Not to mention the basics like food. And all of this would be a conservative estimate.
    Now they go and lose their job, through no fault of their own, and there income is reduced to $500 per week. How does this person live without missing a few payments and start to have their credit score affected!!

    They start applying for jobs but they don’t get any offers. The weeks begin to go by becoming months. They may apply for some jobs but the position is to remain open/listed for 3 weeks before they start interviewing. Then you may get a call for an interview and all goes well, but your told they will be conducting interviews for the next 2 weeks. So you wait to hear something. There goes another month, and more bills that were due! You wait 2 weeks to hopefully get a job offer from your interview that seemed to go well, but how many canidates were applying for the position? Also, how many were younger that could be offered the starting salary rate. As time goes by and you don’t hear anything. the company doesn’t even have the courtesy to let you know the position was filled !! You continue to apply for positions while your waiting to hear from someone. There goes another month and a couple more bills late while you try to make “Ends Meet” on $500 per week. There goes the credit score a bit further ! After a few disappointing interviews you begin to apply for lower level positions. Now- your told your over qualified after a few interviews ! ! There goes another month! There goes another bill late! There goes the credit score lower again!

    More time passes and your getting further into debt. Now you may look to pull some money from a 401K,if your fortunate enough to still have one ! Then you find out from your 401K,your not old enough and there will be a 20% tax penalty for taking some of your money to pay some bills or pay some things off to reduce monthly expenses.

    At this point you have been unemployed for 6 – 8 months,or a bit longer, and your beginning to hear that your skills are not up to date! You continue to send out your resume but you seem to be getting fewer calls than before. Now more time passes, a few more bills late and a further decline in the credit score. At this point you may even be near the brink of bankruptcy !

    Suddenly, you get the perfect chance ! A company looking for a person with your skills and background!! Yes- the interview goes great and you get an offer. Your told the position requires a full “Financial/Criminal” background check. You have no problem with the criminal check but a concern with the financial check,especially if your background is in a Managerial/Financial/Accounting area. You realize your credit score is no longer perfect,especially if you got to the brink of bankruptcy but it’s a pre-requisate for the job!

    That job slips by but you try to stay optomistic and continue to apply for new positions while trying to stay afloat on $500 per week. There’s more bills late or unpaid, the credit score slips lower and lower and your skills become rustier.
    My point with all of this is that this is all a snow ball effect. As time goes on the worse it gets and it all becomes a vicious cycle. MY MAIN POINT IS THAT IT’S CRAZY FOR PEOPLE TO NOT UNDERSTAND WHY A PERSON IN THIS SITUATION DOESN’T GET HIRED WHEN MOST EMPLOYERS TODAY REQUIRE A CREDIT CHECK TO HIRE ! !

    I think this whole thing of background checks has become totally out of control. I can agree with the criminal check, but financial is crazy! It seems a few employers started this process a few years back and now it’s standard for almost every employer. Even if it’s not in a financial position !

    If you want to re-employ the un-employed – Stop the out of control credit checks !!!!

    I’m sure there are plenty of the currently employed that would never pass their company’s screening process if they were required to go through that process again today ! !

    • 35.1
      suri says:

      Dan – I ‘liked’ your explanation of a valid condition for many unemp. HOWEVER, I also am aware of several including my hubby and myself whose credit is still intact and it hasn’t made abit of difference, for what it is worth. THERE IS JUST VERY VERY LITTLE HIRING ANYWHERE. Even if you meet 99% of the requirements, the ‘right’ age group, background, experience, education. It seems surreal that our country is even surviving when so many are on the sidelines!!

      Well, just wanted to let you know I totally relate, SADLY… New Year = new hope??

  • 36
    mark says:

    well in the news today was a sad day, but what the goverment has to know is that when people have nothing to lose they get ugly. when uncle sam can give the banks billions of dollars and give the people no hope, what good can come of it. as more 99ers come and go the world will get more uglier, what happened today is not what any american wants to see, but when people cant feed there kids or pay there rent, while congressmen and senetors eat prime rib and lobsters, while people who have worked there whole lifes get nothing from the goverment they have paid into, what hope can you see………………………………

  • 37
    Helga says:

    In this day and age of amazing technology and medical advancements, where billions and billions of our tax dollars we once contributed to while being employed, can no longer help the unemployed in need of continued assistance. Now with unemployment for millions of us that the government cut off is pleading for help just until half of us can find jobs. Even though reports say that the unemployed are finding jobs, that is such a small amount to make even a dent in what needs to be done. I am one of millions still unable to find a job. I seek out employment daily in my field and out. I am losing my mind, my family and soon my home. There is just so much my family and friends can help me, they must live too. Please reconsider and give us at least a Tier 5 for the 99er’s in desperate and I mean desperate times as such so we can feed our families and pay some bills. The future is very gloomy and grim for our children which no longer have faith in the government if you allow us to suffer any longer.

  • 38
    Eli, says:

    I just filled out another application for Employment Yesterday and again I face the all to familiar application process of Elimination!!!! the dreaded credit report portion of a background check!! I have absolutely no problem with a criminal back ground check drug test but why my credit!!!!! it is ruined two years unemployed has ruined my credit! all my bills are late my student loans are in default I look like a complete looser!! I am Not !!! I just fell on hard times! please!!! I want a Job !

    I decided to copy and paste this portion of the application process to prove! you don’t even get a call back with my credit report I am just ignored skipped to even a second thought! its paper not me ! advise please HELP!!!
    HELP!!!! Michael Colliss HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    A search of public records (including records documenting an arrest, indictment, conviction, initial civil judicial action, tax lien or outstanding judgment be conducted by internal personnel employed by (BLANK) I am entitled to copies of any such public records obtained by (BLANK0 Inc. unless I mark the check box below. If I am not hired as a result of such information, I am entitled to a copy of any such records even though I have checked the box below.I waive receipt of a copy of any public record described in the paragraph above.Applicant’s Signature:

  • 39
    Eli, says:

    HELLO! ANY ADVISE ! ANYONE CAN I REFUSE A CREDIT CHECK BE DONE???

  • 40
    Eli, says:

    Thank will do, there is not as many blogs as before.