Friday, October 16, 2009

The Unemployed Can't Go Mammoth Hunting

If you are unemployed, life might feel like vacation for a little while as your unemployment checks come in, but it gets hard pretty fast. The downside of having no income is that you still need to depend on cash for your survival. Back in the days of cavemen, there was no money. If a you were a caveman and wanted to eat, you picked up a weapon and stared chasing really furry elephants. Today, if you stab a bison in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, you're going to jail.

Right now, the unemployment rate in San Francisco is over 10%...

...that means there's tens of thousands of people in San Francisco that are hemorrhaging money and/or depending on the support of others to get by. The trouble with being jobless is that most of your training on how to manage money breaks down. In today's recession, as soon as you realize that there aren't enough jobs to go around, you realize that you're not prepared for the question "Now what?"

If you've been employed all of your adult life, your survival instincts for living on no money suck. As a recruiter, I get a lot applications from people that really need work. If they don't get the job, and most of them don't, I don't really know how to help them. There are a lot of programs available to help people get on their feet from nothing, but I really don't know of too many programs that are designed to keep people from slipping backwards.

Given that working people pay the taxes and make the donations to fund programs for those at the bottom, you'd think there would be more efficient systems in place to help people hang onto what they've already got.

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