Social Darwinism - the only logical explanation?

Is the whole point of this economy to get rid of the jobless? Hope they starve to death or something?

Everyone knows these people aren’t lazy - there’s just not enough jobs for all those unemployed people, and there never will be. At best we’ll hit 7-8% unemployment (like Europe) and stay there. The math does not support the lazy theory.

What other options do unemployed workers have but to take a boat overseas?

It’s not that people want the unemployed to starve or go elsewhere - it’s that they care so little that they don’t think about them at all.

Or if they do, they assume these people are lazy or there’s something wrong with them. We’ve seen it over and over again on the Dope, where someone pops up with a problem getting a job or making ends meet and a certain continent blasts them and essentially says they must be at fault, because otherwise they’d have a job or whatever.

But personally, I think it’s just a total neglect, and total not thinking at all that there’s a bunch of people out there hurting that bad. It just never enters their thoughts.

Deep down I suspect the same thing.

At this point what do the jobless do? It sure would be interesting to see what would happen if 16 million Americans could leave here without all the fucking paperwork and expense associated with leaving.

I’d mention a few good places to go coughIndia/Africacough but boy the firestorm that would start. :smiley:

You know, instead of feeling worthless and giving up maybe they should take action against the society that turned it’s back on them. I’m picturing masses people all dividing into groups and each group standing in an intersection blocking traffic. In a city like Vegas it’d be epic grid lock. They’d have to do something or there’d by rioting.

Then repeating this every few days until they get some help, either unemployment, make-work, new training, or something. Maybe stage these around the country. If society wishes to leave hardworking people to suffer and struggle, what do they owe society? With that kind of betrayal, nothing that’s what! So why not return the favor and make it personal?

Perhaps we will revert to what as the norm a century or so ago, domestic service. Perhaps the unemployed can serve the rich as maids, butlers, scullery work and the like. Before the rise of the middle class the rich had an ample supply of the poor servicing them. The personal servant supply only dried up because of the growing middle class, they had more opportunities and an upwardly climbing wage and standard of living. Now we are seeing it slide back wards. Maybe we are experiencing a reverse history as the middle class continues to collapse. Don’t worry though as Mr Limbaugh has said the rich are the people who make the country work, we should be thinking of their needs.

They don’t have any real options, even with massive economic growth (4-5% a year) it will take 5 or more years for the U3 to drop to 5% again. And that isn’t anywhere near realistic. Not only that but even if/when we do get good economic growth, most of the growth is going to (in all honesty) go to corporate profits, job creation overseas or income for the top 1%. It isn’t going to go to create good paying jobs with benefits. There is a disconnect now between GDP growth and corporate health vs. good paying domestic jobs. Whatever wealth is made seems to go to creating jobs overseas or income for the top.

David Stockman recently said that if you look behind the rhetoric about how jobs are coming back you find that most new jobs are part time temp jobs with no benefits that pay about 20k a year. You need full time jobs with benefits that pay 50k a year to have a family. If you add in the 0 job growth from 2000-2010 (you need about 150k jobs a month just to break even with unemployment) we are closer to 20-30 million jobs short of a full recovery.

However about 50 years ago the % of jobs relative to the able bodied adult population was far lower, but society still survived. However back then the unemployment rate for blacks and women was 50% or something around that. But somehow people did it, and sadly it’ll probably come back to that. A household with 5 people in it where only one has a job.

Depend on family to help you, live in makeshift housing. That is about all I can think of other than being an expatriate. But even that may not work. Where can you go in all honesty that is hiring unemployed westerners?

I think long term unemployment is a big factor in what is causing the rioting in the middle east right now. Tons of young men who know they’ll never have the dignity and independence to raise a family and live independently finally reach a boiling point.

I have no idea what’ll happen here. I think we will just repress our rage, and eventually redirect it and take it out on mexicans and civil servants. God bless america.

Unemployment is not the only aid available. There are many other forms of assistance, eg food stamps, welfare, or section 8 housing. If nothing else, there are hoovervilles. That would be such a horrible image, politically speaking, that you’ll see the government take action if it hits that point.

We had tent cities back in 2008. I think governments just shut them down.

A whole continent? That is harsh. :wink:

I keep trying to correct this ignorance and I feel like I’m shouting into the wind.

Welfare for able-bodied adults doesn’t exist anymore. Period.

Seriously. The only thing an able-bodied adult who is unemployed and destitute can get is food stamps. NO cash assistance. Nada.

IF there is a dependent child then there is the possibility of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families. For five years. Lifetime limit. After that five years is up the kid gets nothing other than food stamps.

Section 8 is a joke - most regions of the country you can’t even get onto a waiting list. In my are - not as bad off as Nevada - the waiting lists are about 10 years. That’s a ten year wait to get Section 8 housing IF you’re on the list - if you’re not on the list you are f***ed because the list is closed You can’t even get in line.

So no, sorry, there are NOT “many other forms of assistance”. I believe that the continuing myth that there ARE “many other forms of assistance” contributes to the lack of urgency felt by the public at large. This is a serious problem. The US is ignoring it. This will not end well.

Damn spellchecker with autocorrect! That was supposed to be “contingent”!

In Indiana food stamps requires you to have less than $2,000 in assets. I believe they took a person’s car out of that calculation now (which is good, people need cars to get to/fromw ork), but evenso you have to be broke to get on food stamps in Indiana now. Despite that rule, which I assume is similar nationwide, I think something like 1/6 of the country is on food stamps now. That is a bad sign.

The healthy indiana plan is designed to cover able bodied adults for health insurance. But when I applied I was rejected because they said they are only covering adults with kids now that there are so many applicants. I assume/guess they are doing that to take pressure off medicaid which is likely struggling in this economy.

Oh, yeah, tell me about it - I’m on food stamps in Indiana right now. I’m speaking from a “been there, done that” situation.

We’re allowed up to $3,000 in assets because my spouse is disabled, and they let us keep both vehicles… but then, I do use the pick up for work, and the vehicles are 9 and 12 years old so it’s not like either has a high book value. But yeah, $2,000 is the normal asset limit.

Still… at least we can eat well. Having the assurance one can obtain food and eat well is, I find, of immense psychological benefit.


Sorry to hear that - we were lucky and I got us onto HIP in the early days of the program. But they have been able to expand the program, so they might be able to do so again. Get on the waiting list if you can and keep trying! If something opens up I’d like to see you get onto the program. It’s not heaven, but it’s coverage so if you need to see a doctor it won’t break you.

Well actually, social darwinism may not be why MOST American ignore the poor, but if you look hard at the rhetoric of conservative leaders, it’s the ugly little secret underneath their words. the answer most conservatives have for most of the problems … lack of food, housing, clothing … that might be addressed by government social programs is personal charity, despite the fact that throughout history, personal charity has failed to address the needs of most of the poor, starving, etc.

What I’m seeing UNDERNEATH the rhetoric of most conservatives, on this board and elsewhere, is a general feeling is that once poverty in America is on par with the rest of the world … in short, once the middle class as we know it has been pretty much destroyed … then America will be competitive again and the poor, i.e., the children of the present middle class, will be sufficiently disadvantaged and ignorant that they will be manageable in pretty much the same way the poor are manageable in most Third World nations.

You will not hear conservatives ADMIT to this train of thought, but think about what has happened over the past few years, and listen carefully to conservative rhetoric about it. They simply do not care about the middle class. They are, at heart, social darwinists, even though they will vehemently deny it.

What do you mean by well? I’ve always had the impression that food stamps basically cover broke-college-kid food - ramen, PB&J, and so on.

If you go to places like Aldis and Sav-a-lot you can buy a lot food with less scratch.

If you buy some things in bulk like meat, cheese, and fish you can eat really well. Like there’s a business food supply store chain around here called Gordon’s food Service. They aim for restaurant supplies and stuff but they’re open to the public and they’ll slice meat and cheese for you for free. You can get a month’s supply of turkey breast for ~$15 there. Same for cheese such as colby-jack, cheddar, muenster, etc. Have it sliced, take it home, divide it up into smaller packages, and freeze what you won’t immediately use for later in the month. Although cheese is a bitty iffy, some cheeses get crumbly if they’re frozen.

Further if you know how to cook your options really improve. Things like frozen talupia, whitening, and cod fillets with the right seasonings (a bit of soy sauce, lemon pepper, sprinkle of chilli powder, and a little basil) taste wonderful slow cooked, and if you have tin foil to wrap them in they get really juicy and tender. You can get enough fish for a person to have fish everyday a month for less than $30.

If you like Chili it’s pretty economical to make a big pot of, and store for the month.

Soups can be pretty cheap.

I could go on, but a lot of it is knowing where to find the good deals, and if you can cook from base ingredients your options really improve.

A lot of what The Tao’s Revenge said. I buy in quantity. I cook from scratch. I also garden in the spring/summer/fall for food production to the point it saves us significant money (you can buy vegetable seeds with food stamps, did you know that?). Also, again, because my husband is listed as disabled with Public Aid we get a little extra a month for him. My largest cost is condiments, and this summer I’ll be growing more herbs than just parsley, so that should help out.

We eat a LOT of vegetables and rice. I buy meat and fish, but we eat 4-6 ounces in an entire day, as opposed to some typical American portions where people eat 8 or more ounces of it three times a day. The biggest cost is prepared food, followed by protein.

So a typical meal is stir-friend vegetables and chicken/beef/fish/tofu over brown rice. Or stew made from scratch in our crockpot.

That doesn’t mean everyone on food stamps is getting enough to eat really well - the rules are byzantine. Someone earning near the upper income limit might only get $25-50/month. Well, it’s intended as a supplement in those cases. For us, given how little I made December and January, we’re getting a enough to cover all our food costs - which is good because I am not making enough to cover my rent, so if I had to worry about money for food on top of THAT, well, I’d be a wreck.

(The good news I got today - we should be able to start that painting job Tuesday or Wednesday. Yeah employment.)

I’m also not too proud to go to a food bank, although the quality of them vary enormously.

That’s pretty fucking scary, considering most conservatives come from the middle, or nowadays upper blue collar, classes. They may not realize it, but they’re talking smack about their neighbors, and if it comes to more than just talk, there’s gonna be a cold, cold wind blowing through ricky-ticky-ville.

While I tend to disagree with Evil Captor, the farther right edge of the Tea Party types do tend to match this. This is an accurate, if nasty summation of the effect of their statements. I believe most of them have not realized this.

It’s about 1/8, which is still a horrifying number.