Saturday, June 07, 2008

Unemployment facts ...

From the business viewpoint, there are a few things we note about layoffs. First, when a layoff happens, half of the employees will cheer. This is due to the fact that unemployment benefits allow you to get a pay check without working. Second, most people won't seriously consider a new job until their benefits run out. Thus, the sad fact that increasing unemployment benefits increases unemployment. Yes, I have a heart of stone that hovers around a temperature of absolute zero.


The Professor said...

Ahhh the unemployment problem.

I know of a young man (I used to call him "Loser Boy" or LB) that was laid off from his job as an electrician. He was collecting unemployment, and I had heard that he wasn't really seeking a job--because his father had told him to just wait. Yup--the unemployment checks are coming in, so no need to rush out, son.

What really got me was that, when I asked him about it, he told me was looking. Twice a week. Because he had to log them to keep unemployment checks coming in.

He also told me it "wasn't his fault" he was laid off--many people were. I asked him if any electrician's apprentices were kept. Yup. Were any higher skilled electricians laid off? Yup. So I then asked him why he felt others who theoretically had the "same" skill sets were kept, while he was let go. He didn't quite get my point, which obviously was--they keep the more productive/harder working employees.

The kicker? He then told me that "At least he wasn't mooching off the F'ing government [like I was.]

And what was my "mooching"? I was serving on active duty as a Lt Colonel in the United States Air Force. [and apparently collecting unemployment doesn't count as mooching.]

I wouldn't have cared so much if he hadn't been dating someone I cared about in my family.

Marf said...

Ah, yes. I have an uncle like that.

Looney said...

Someone I love got into the deadbeat culture and married one of them. She regretted very much, but it is hard to undo a marriage and children. For the rest of us, if we show our concern by providing resources, then the deadbeat will simply work less to compensate. If we don't provide resources, we are hardhearted and cruel to our relative. You can't win.

Pvblivs said...

The professor:

     Uh huh. Now a reality. Businesses will do this sort of thing to eliminate higher paid workers. (It's still a business decision.) Managers can have many reasons for their decisions (and some may be gut-feel.)
     Of course, the claim that workers "don't really want to work" doesn't wash anyway. I have browsed through the businessmen's books. They make no secret of the fact that they regard workers as pawns and even a direct relation between productivity and job security would let them get too settled.

Looney said...

Pvblivs, I usually don't track these older posts. Having been in business for a few decades, I am a bit skeptical that business men read "businessmen's books". They usually learn things by watching the behavior of people and trying this or trying that. Most successful business men don't come from business school.

Certainly businessmen have plenty of bad motives at the center of their behavior. I have seen plenty of really bad behavior first hand, so no one needs to educate me on this. But just because businessmen are bad doesn't mean that we can deduce that workers are good - or even not quite as bad.

Pvblivs said...

     Actually, I just happenned to notice that post and comment the other day. Businessmen are typically motivated by money and power. (Running a business has little to offer someone not interested in these things. It will attract people with those motives.)
     I find no reason to believe that half the workers cheer a layoff. Unemployment is stressful. One worries about eating and the rent. Wages are low because people are desperate for anything that will help pay the bills. If would-be workers were milking the system en masse, as you suggest, wages should be being pushed upwards.
     Quite frankly, if there are people that unwilling to work, I would rather have them housed somewhere, not filling out applications. With job security nonexistent in today's economy, I don't need people that effectively make my own search harder.