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Hipsters On Food Stamps, Part 1 & 2
The Last Psychiatrist ^ | November 10, 2012

Posted on 01/12/2014 9:36:39 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

"In the John Waters-esque sector of northwest Baltimore -- equal parts kitschy, sketchy, artsy and weird -- Gerry Mak and Sarah Magida sauntered through a small ethnic market stocked with Japanese eggplant, mint chutney and fresh turmeric. After gathering ingredients for that evening's dinner, they walked to the cash register and awaited their moments of truth."

Those are two "hipsters", and the punchline is that they pay for their foodie porn with foodie stamps, which sounds like it should be a terrible thing, except it's in Salon.com, which means they're going to try and tell you how it's a good thing, which they don't, because they can't. It's madness.

It's very easy and satisfying to hate these two, and nothing would make me happier than to hit them square in the back with a jack-o-lantern. But I also recognize that I am being told to hate them, so I have to take a step back and find out why it is so important that I hate them. I did. I should have just reached for the pumpkin.

No one but the state and psychiatry can profit from another's misery, and they are the same thing, so let's see why Election Day doesn't matter.

I.

First, the obvious: what's wrong with hipsters on food stamps is that these are college educated people who should be able to get jobs, not live off the state. They're not black, after all. Hell, one of the two in the article is even Asian. "What, like Russian Asian?" No, like Asian Asian. "Whaaaaaaat?"

"It's the economy, stupid!" Thanks guy from 1992, but the economy did not tell you to go to college for something you knew in advance would make you unemployable, especially when that unemployable choice cost exactly the same as the employable choice, i.e. too much. Lesson one at the academia should be the importance of separating vocation from avocation, as character actor Fred Thompson and electrical contractor Benjamin Franklin both understood. When I was six I wanted to be in Playboy. Just because it's your dream, doesn't mean you should pursue it.

So what makes them hatable is the seeming choice they have made: they could work, yes at jobs they don't like but hey, that's America; but instead they choose to feel entitled to $200/month from the rest of us salarymen.

However, secondly:

Before we blame them for their choice, we should ask why they felt they could make that choice. I'm not trying to start trouble, but let's choose something I'm familiar with, i.e. women: why would a smart high school junior, 4.0 and AP Everything, think that going to Hampshire College for English Literature was a good idea? Why would her parents allow this madness, other than the fact that they were divorcing? What did she think would happen given that she knew in advance there were no jobs for English majors? Serious answers, please, I'll offer four I had personal experience with: law school; academia; non-profits; marriage. Don't roll your eyes at me, young lady: let's say you are the daughter of a lawyer and you major in English. When you were 17 and you imagined your life at your Dad's age-- not the starving poetess fantasy you wrote about in your spiral notebook, but a glimpse of the bourgeois future you then thought you didn't want-- what kind of a house did you imagine in the "if that happens to me I'll Anne Sexton myself" scenario? A lawyer's house or an English major's house? In other words, the choice to major in English was predicated on information she received from multiple sources like schools and TV-- sources I will collectively call the Matrix-- that every generation does better than the last, that there was a safety net of sorts, a bailout at the end, that future happiness was inevitable, and so we return to economics: the general name for that safety net is credit. America was the land of the minimum monthly payment. And if this analogy isn't clear enough for you, let me reverse it: the ability of the economy to offer English as a major required a massive subsidy to make you feel like $20k/yr was the same as free. If you had to pay it up front, you'd either be an engineer or $80k richer. That subsidy is now worthless, not because the money doesn't exist but because the bailout at the end, e.g the four options I suggested were operational 1977-1999 which guaranteed the payments would be made, won't help.

Imagine a large corporate machine mobilized to get you to buy something you don't need at a tremendously inflated cost, complete with advertising, marketing, and branding that says you're not hip if you don't have one, but when you get one you discover it's of poor quality and obsolete in ten months. That's a BA.

II.

When we see a welfare mom we assume she can't find work, but when we see a hipster we become infuriated because we assume he doesn't want to work but could easily do so-- on account of the fact that he can speak well-- that he went to college. But now suddenly we're all shocked: to the economy, the English grad is just as superfluous as the disenfranchised welfare mom in the hood-- the college education is just as irrelevant as the skin color. Not irrelevant for now, not irrelevant "until the economy improves"-- irrelevant forever. The economy doesn't care about intelligence, at all, it doesn't care what you know, merely what you can produce for it. The only thing the English grad is "qualified" for in this economy is the very things s/he is already doing: coffeehouse agitator, Trader Joe's associate, Apple customer.................................................. and spouse of a capitalist.

Of course I'm not happy about this, I like smart people, but that's the new reality. There was a time where women went to college to get an MRS degree, and I am telling you that that time is today, there is nothing else of value in there. Sure, some college women go on to become doctors and CEOs, and some go on to become child pornographers and Salon writers, none of those things have anything to do with what happened in college. If you are going to college to get an education and not to meet guys, you are insane, literally insane, delusional, in reality one is never going to happen and the other is going to happen anyway, and you could have gotten both for free at a bookstore. Worked for me. The only question for the future single mom is whether it's worth $XXXXXX a year to meet guys, and the answer is of course it's not, even nightclubs let ladies in for free.

It's hard to accept that the University of Chicago grad described in the article isn't employable, that the economy doesn't need him, but it is absolutely true, but my point here is that not only is he not contributing, the economy doesn't need him to contribute. Which is good, because there's nothing he can do for it. 1. Anything requiring science is out. 2. "He can work manual labor!" I love how people assume economics doesn't apply to construction. The demand for those jobs is very high AND hipsters suck at them. At any wage, Gerry the hipster will always be outworked by Vinnie the son of a longshoreman, who will always be outworked by a Mexican illegal, i.e. the system will always be able to find someone who can do the job better AND with lower labor costs. Bonus: no need to pay Jose's insurance, everyone knows Hispanics never get sick, except fake psychiatrically. 3. Hipsters are not good at retail or sales unless detached irony is required, which it is not, which is why they're on food stamps. Here's a quick test, watch this video:

(VIDEO-AT-LINK)

Is Baldwin's character a jerk or a savior? The genius of the story is that half of you will have completely misunderstood it, and you like mint chutney and food stamps. The secret is at the beginning, at 0:15, where it is revealed that Alec Baldwin doesn't feel any of this, the whole speech is a work. If you were in that room, some of you would understand this as a work, but feed off the energy of the message anyway, welcome the coach's cursing at you, "this guy is awesome!"; while some of you would take it personally, this guy is a jerk, you have no right to talk to me like that, or-- the standard maneuver when narcissism is confronted with a greater power-- quietly seethe and fantasize about finding information that will out him as a hypocrite. So satisfying.

That same person will retort that the film is a critique of evil American capitalism, but then why, in a job sector with 50% more women than men, is Alec Baldwin yelling at a room in which there is not a single woman? Are there no female capitalists? Why does he have to teach them a mnemonic that is already posted on the bulletin board behind the chalkboard? Same reason Pacino isn't present: because sales isn't about the product, it's about the relationship, and women and alpha males are better at relationships, while everyone else is busy outing hypocrisy. Go get 'em. "The leads are weak." Oh, the leads are weak. In this example, leads=economy.

This is where the two mentalities separate. One group of people sees the man behind the job, and judges him as an identity; and the other group of people sees the symbolic importance of the person, what he represents, a judge, a doctor, a bank teller, whatever; and that first group of people find it difficult to operate in society because they cannot see that the person is more than he "is" simply by virtue of his position, because that would doubly reinforce their own marginalization.

The hipsters want to believe that because they are not obsessed with money/capitalism that they are better people, opting out of "materialism", but that's an after the fact rationalization. There's simply no drive for anything except existing. "I'm a good father." Go home and play with your kids. "I believe in social causes." For which the minimum exertion is required, yes they'll have wifi at OWS. There's plenty of attention to style, to identity, and regression to our most primitive instinct: eating, fetishized. The next thing that should happen in this chain is the fetishization of the bathroom, "how pooping can be luxurious and how to make it more decadent." Louis CK made a joke about this:

(VIDEO-AT-LINK)

and in case you think "it's so true!" note that he was talking about how terrible being old is, how life was basically over for him. And then, IRL, he went on to make two TV shows. In other words, he was kidding about the pooping. He wasn't talking about himself, he was saying it because he knew you'd relate.

"We're artists, not producers." Then make some art! "No one will buy it." Are you insane? The point isn't the money yet, it is the drive. Go to the Whole Foods and ask if you can hang it for free, and if they say no, hang it anyway. I'd rather look at the most horrendous art than subway tiles or "Lose Weight Fast" ads. I'm no artist, yet here I sit, clickity clackety clack, applying King's 2000 words a day to write you the best book of pornography I'm able to pull off (by Christmas). The natural human instinct is to create things, beginning with the toddler who is amazed that he was able to create such a fascinating product out of his butt, the difference is most toddlers grow up and sublimate that drive and create other things. You have not gotten past the poop, strike that, you have regressed to the oral stage, hence the emphasis on organic foods. Yes, the anal stage comes after the oral stage.

"I have a degree." No one assumes you're smart because of it, so what was the point? You were tricked, your parents were tricked, your peers were tricked, your employers were not tricked at all. "There's more to a college education than employability." No there isn't. I am not anti-liberal arts, I am all in on a classical education, I just don't think there's any possibility at all, zero, none, that you will get it at college, and anyway every single college course from MIT and Yale are on Youtube. Is that any worse than paying $15k to cut the equivalent class at State? Name me one contemporary fiction writer who required his college training to be a writer, and if you say David Foster Wallace I swear to god I'm going to pumpkin your house. I think the only reason The New Yorker keeps shoving him down my throat is because he-- the guy, not his work-- is an academic's aspirational fantasy, a compromise between two worlds: mild mannered writing professor by day, brooding and non-balding antihero by night, a last chance at "I can be cool, too" for the late 30s associate professor who thinks that intelligence alone is insufficient reason to be labeled a man. My university is full of them, all reasonably smart, all pretending at cool through the hiding in plain site of cultural irony and political cynicism and pretend alcoholism. "I may be drunk, but why was my polling station filled with rednecks trying to take away a female's somatic autonomy?" says the endocrinology patient wearing a blazer with jeans as he nurses his second microbrew, trying to impress me with what kind of a man he could be in the Matrix. Come on, stop breathing. Obviously I'm not telling you to become an alcoholic, but don't tell me you are one and then go home at 10:30 because otherwise your wife will cheat on you. Man up or stand down, I don't care which, just don't backwash into a perfectly good beer if I'm going to have to finish half of it.

III.

Fact: college is a waste, but we haven't yet hit that point in society where we can bypass it. So we have to pass through another generation of massive college debt. How to pull in the suckers in? Answer: these articles. By getting you to say, "these hipsters should be able to get jobs because they are college graduates!" you are saying, "college is worth something." It isn't. But by directing your hate towards hipsters, you are protecting the system against change.

Part 2

IV.

"I can't tell if you're defending hipsters or hating on them." They're ridiculous. Feel better? They're not the problem.

It's a simple thesis and no one wants to hear it: hipsters may lack drive, but the world they live in wasn't set up by them, it was set up by their parents, i.e. the Dumbest Generation Of Narcissists In The History Of The World, the ones who magnified the importance and cost of college without having any idea of what should be its purpose, let alone its content.

If you want to tell me a 30 year old hipster should be lashed for not trying to better himself, I'll bring the whip, but the 30 year old chose his pointless major when he was 17 and you think the outcome is all his fault? A 17 year old can kill two people and still be considered too young to be criminally responsible, and anyway in that case you think the problem was video games and bullying. Of course Gerry The Hipster is made of soy and ennui, but there's plenty of blame to go around. When he was 17 the system incentivized him to destroy his life, tempted him with beer, babes, and BS-- and the promise of an upper middle class lifestyle provided he went to "a good school" (read: gave the system $100k of his post tax, pre-interest money), never mind for what. Like a good American, he did what he was told.

The society that taught people to want a defective college degree is, unfortunately, going to be expected to support those that bought it, it's still under warranty. At the very minimum, it owes them their money back, and if they don't pay you should sue for breach of contract. "At the conclusion of this course, students will show a proficiency in...." The plaintiff rests.

"They should have studied more." Agreed. But then you shouldn't have admitted them, you shouldn't have passed them. Inflate the grade, Gresham's Law the society.

All along you've said "you need to go to college so you can get a good job" but the system was not designed to raise producers, it was designed to raise consumers. Well, here we are. Why are you surprised that they need consumer stamps? Why are you surprised they moved back in with you? "We did the best we could." No you did not, I was there, I saw it. You borrowed against their future, and they can't pay it back. And now you're yelling at them.

V.

While the idea of a Metafilter post-doc receiving food stamps AND telling me they're entitled to it makes my eyes go Sauronic, it's that rage that requires some examination. Why rage? Why not just roll my eyes and go back to drinking rum and soldering op amps? What is the social importance of my rage?

Society is nothing more than individual psychology multiplied by too many to count. If narcissism is what drives this society, then only narcissism will explain it.

So start with an interesting hypothetical: does everybody need to work anymore? I understand work from an ethical/character perspective, this is not here my point. Since we no longer need e.g. manufacturing jobs-- cheaper elsewhere or with robots-- since those labor costs have evaporated, could that surplus go towards paying people simply to stay out of trouble? Is there a natural economic equilibrium price where, say, a U Chicago grad can do no economically productive work at all but still be paid to use Instagram? Let me be explicit: my question is not should we do this, my question is that since this is precisely what's happening already, is it sustainable? What is the cost? I don't have to run the numbers, someone already has: it's $150/mo for a college grads, i.e. the price of food stamps. Other correct responses would be $700/mo for "some high school" (SSI) or $1500/mo for "previous work experience" (unemployment). I would have accepted $2000/mo for "minorities" (jail) for partial credit.

VI.

While all those monies have different names and different "requirements" they are all exactly the same thing: paying people who are off the grid, whether by choice or circumstance, indefinitely. i.e. Living Wages. However, they can never be called that. They have to pretend to be something else: this is for food, this is because of a medical problem we just made up, this is because you were caught with weed so we'll leave you in here for 6 months until we sentence you to probation. And they have to have these fake reasons to give taxpayers a little emotional distance, deniability, otherwise they'd go John Galt, after all, they have all the guns. If they can invade Iraq, how hard is it going to be to take the Whole Foods on 3rd?

That "emotional distance" is not hyperbole, it's not me being a lefty deconstructicon, it is an absolute requirement of a psychic defense of identity, of self-worth. The point is not to get you to accept that hipsters deserve food stamps, the point is the opposite: to enrage you, infuriate you, so that you will resist-- because then and only then will you pay for it.

If this seems implausible to you, which it must-- that's exactly the point of it-- consider the following extreme analogy, which surprisingly will be easier to understand, which is also the whole point: Say your father raped you repeatedly for a decade. Hold on, slow down, it gets worse: now you're 40, and he shows up asking you for $2400 because, and I quote, "you have a responsibility to take care of me." There he is in your living room, eyeballing the nice things in your home. If it is a fact that you will inevitably give him the money, is it easier to for you to pair it with your venom or your sympathy? Though it's enraging, there is a perverse pleasure in giving that bastard the money. It tells you that you showed him that you are better than him.

That's how America works. The system needs you to be willing, not wanting, to pay for this, and getting the existing (narcissistic) society to believe that it is their "responsibility" (Left's word) to pay for "laziness" (Right's word)-- to WANT to pay for this-- is absolutely impossible. Why can't we just all agree on what a fair share might be, take care of each other? Didn't you major in English Lit? "Homo economicus" is not reality, envy is an immutable characteristic of our consciousness, it is practically Kantian, some of you will get a minor hold of it but even your priests are chock full o' it. If the porn isn't high res you can't get horny, but you can hate a guy at 1000 paces without a scope. That's human nature. Envy, rage. It's not all we are, but you cannot discount it.

The only way to get them to agree to pay is to give them a way of rationalizing the "responsibility" as, in some way, for them: you'll get a tax break, you'll be rewarded in heaven, you are a better person for it, thanks, this means a lot. Can you imagine a hipster looking at a salesman and saying thanks for your service? So that's out, use the default: rage. Just like how you get people motivated to go to war. No, no, no, no, not the people already waving flags, I mean the people who don't want war. Said every liberal in Congress one magical day in 2003: "I'm not going to let those oil bastards Cheney and Bush get away with their racist imperialist plan, which is why I'm going to scream obscenities at them as I vote Attack."

The system isn't thinking short term, it needs this to work long term, those hipsters are going to be getting food stamps forever, or do you think if the economy rebounds, old liberal arts majors will suddenly become appealing? Like a woman who squandered her youth on fun but disreputable men, she will find herself at 45 wanting to marry, but alone. "That is such a disgusting, sexist, archaic thing to say." I feel your rage, and you are right. Alone nevertheless.

VII.

You might retort that there's no money to pay for 25 more years of hipster apathy. Admittedly, this is a compelling argument. But the total cost of food stamps is $80B. The annual budget deficit is over ten times that. America's economy is one big gigantic retail sales event. Is the economy back to like it never happened?

why Obama won

The underemployed econ majors will recognize that this isn't "real", inflation adjusted sales and the last few years are based on overpriced high-end goods that only Aspirational 14% can afford, and that for the other 85% of America purchasing power has dropped to 1997 levels, but as Whole Foods says, whatever.

$80B is a lot, but how much is actually going to hipsters, how many hipsters are there, really? 73? 74? What purpose does this rage serve? If you Rage Against The Hipsters, you will be that much more likely to "allow" food stamps for everyone else. The hipsters are diversions. They are sacrifices. How much hate have you focused on Gerry since you heard about him? All of it.

To clarify, this is not some kind of socialist ploy, it is a function of the way America (read: narcissism) works, it doesn't need to be centralized, it is the sum of individual vectors pointing in different directions. Here's the other side's example: when they talk about raising taxes on the rich, why do they pick a "low" point and push it higher? Should the highest rates be at $250k/yr? $300k? Another way of doing it, which is precisely why they cannot do it, is start at the top and move down. "We need $1T. Ok, top five guys pay 90%. Not enough? How about top ten guys pay 90%. Not enough? Top...." I'm not advocating this or any other policy, not my place, I am pointing out that doing it the way it's done protects the 1% by letting the Aspirational 14%-- who crave recognition and are easily identifiable and hatable because they are poseurs, just of a different kind-- act as human shields. They take the bullets, the unknown mega-rich take tinted window rides to the Hamptons. During those tumultuous 80 seconds of OWS-- and BTW, those people gave up hanging out after only a trimester, do you really think they're ready for 40 hour work weeks?-- the majority of the personal attacks were against people who made <$300k, not >$50M. It's easy to hate, and so the media nudges you in the wrong direction.

VIII.

You might think that the rage is the spark for a transformation of America, a full scale Dagny Taggart meltdown or Bolshevik revolution, depending on your hat. That's not how it works. If this is narcissism, then its purpose is protecting identity, defending against change. Doesn't matter what side you think you're on, unless you are unplugged you are for the status quo.

Here's an example: in the "radical left" (their words) magazine Jacobin, the editor writes a defense of Gerry and Sarah as a way of arguing for the abolishment of, well, everything Randian. He's against the "work ethic", he wants a paradigm shift away from American producerism-- the idea that your value is based only on what you can produce for the economy-- towards social rights, e.g. Living Wages. I disagree with everything in it, so what? but it is very well written and reasoned, and if I played the same game as him I'd want him on my team.

The point here is that he wants CHANGE. Here is the last paragraph of the article, tell me if you can find anything supporting the status quo:

"Rather than the "deserving" or "working" poor, with its connotations of moral judgment and authoritarian social control, it is time to begin speaking the language of economic and social rights. For instance, the right to a Universal Basic Income, a means of living at a basic level that would be provided to everyone, no questions asked. Against the invidious politics of the work ethic, it's time to argue that some things should be granted to everyone, simply by virtue of their humanity. Even hipsters."

Sounds sublime. But Gerry already had a living wage-- he spent it on the University of Chicago, 41 years of food stamps in 4 years. If everybody knew in advance the outcome was going to be unemployment and living wages, then why doesn't Frase challenge the capitalist assumption that college is money well spent-- could have been used differently? He can't. This thought cannot occur to him, not because he is dumb, he clearly isn't, or because he is paid by a college-- money is irrelevant to him. He can't because his entire identity is built on college, academia. He is college. Take that away, he disintegrates. So in the utopia he imagines, college still exists AND people get living wages. Call me a Marxist, that's what we have now.

Second, and more importantly, he thinks he's a radical progressive, that he wants a paradigm shift away from capitalism towards social rights-- but he wants to keep everything else about capitalism completely intact. He is explicitly against producerism, but he wants to replace it with consumerism. He wants to make sure people can get what they want, not teach them how to want. In his utopia of no questions asked Universal Basic Income, do retail sales go up or down? The system has won.

IX.

If rage is necessary to keep this all going, how is it elicited efficiently?

Peter Frase, defending Gerry and Sarah:

"But what the [Salon] article seemed to call forth in its readers was unending bile and rage directed at people deemed insufficiently deserving of a public benefit."

Let's do this right. If it is rage, then the rage is because of a threat to identity. What possible threat to identity could Gerry and Sarah pose to hardworking Americans? The answer is that someone wrote an article about how great Gerry and Sarah are, e.g. Peter Frase.

Frase again:

"But they aren't the only people who react to stories like this with rage or contempt rather than empathy. Consider the following comment, left under [Gerry's] response to the article about him":

"I'm sorry but you are a selfish, whiny leach. I can say this because I a middle-aged woman and have been trying to find work for two years without success though I have a masters degree in a fairly desirable field. I have dwindling savings and two kids. Because I stayed home with them for a few years I don't qualify for unemployment and that has also damaged my marketability in the job world. Despite all of this I have never resorted to public assistance and will not. In addition, I have a back problem that surgery did not correct so I am in physical pain 24 hrs a day. Still I have taken temp jobs and we have cut back in many ways. I am proud of my fortitude and resourcefulness, because we will make it through this time and my kids will learn valuable lessons from me about self-reliance."

"Here we have a person who has been marginally employed for two years and suffers physical pain 24 hours a day--and rather than demanding something better for herself, she demands that other people suffer more!"

Wrong, read her words, they are right in front of you. Before that article in Salon, this mother was allowed to believe that her staying off the dole had some honor in itself-- some validation of her identity-- and it allowed her to survive her hardships. Now she is forced to swallow that these people are not merely as good as her, but more valuable-- they get an article, they get defenders like you, they are praised for their intrinsic human value, and all she gets is mocked, belittled, "she's too stupid to know what's good for her!"-- all she can do is comment on their life-- and her small act of rebellion is to at least use the space to tell the world she exists. Rage is her defense that keeps her intact while the world seemingly ignores her.

Husband hates that his wife reads about the faux-celebrities in magazines. They say words to each other. What do they actually hear?

She hears this: "Anyone who likes that is lazy and stupid. You're stupid."

He hears this: "I know they don't actually do anything, but they're more interesting than you."

This is the surprising result: since they wall off into psychic cocoons, therefore the marriage remains intact, for a while longer.

X.

Back to college. Since the problem is college, does college accept any responsibility? I went to The Chronicle of Higher Education to find out. Surprise, no.

What did I expect? They apparently intended this picture to evoke sympathy, isn't it a crime that 33000 PhDs are on food stamps?

You can imagine how the other side reads it, some highlights: hyphenated name; stupid thing to get a PhD in; fat; what's an "adjunct"; why so much cheese; tattoos; place is a mess.

Nowhere does the article address the fact that it should not have allowed her to get a PhD in medieval history, let alone help her pay for it. Do you know what The Chronicle does focus on? That she's not black. First sentence of the article which is entirely about branding:

""I am not a welfare queen," says Melissa."

For a lefty loosy publication like The Chronicle, what difference does it make if she's white? Why does her PhD make her more deserving that a welfare queen? Because to The Chronicle, the PhD has value. It doesn't. I'm not saying she isn't smart, I'm saying the PhD in no way communicates to me she knows medieval history better than any D&D player. She may know more, but how do I know? I don't even find "MD" particularly valid, but at least you can sue a doctor.

But my reason for showing you her is to highlight the perverse logic of the university which will doom us all: since the only maniacs who would ever hire these PhDs are universities, then the solution to their unemployment is more money for universities:

"Ms. Bruninga-Matteau does not blame Yavapai College for her situation but rather the "systematic defunding of higher education." In Arizona last year, Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, signed a budget that cut the state's allocation to Yavapai's operating budget."

Why would you expect her to answer differently?

All the system had to do, starting around 1965, is not incentivize this madness. If there were not guaranteed student loans, up to any amount, available equally across majors and across colleges, independent of skills or promise or societal need, none of this would have happened. Easy money got us into this mess, and easy money will keep us sailing until we go right off the edge of the map.(Go to link for Part 3)


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Education; Government; Society
KEYWORDS: artsy; baltimore; college; degree; economy; educated; education; electionday; hipsters; job; psychiatry; student; unemployable; unemployment; university; weird; welfare; work
Comments?
1 posted on 01/12/2014 9:36:40 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

These losers are the new aristocrats; enjoying the benefits of society while not really contributing towards it. Get a title (the degree) and no longer do you have to bother actually working, you get it all handed to you.


2 posted on 01/12/2014 9:54:47 PM PST by CorporateStepsister (I am NOT going to force a man to make my dreams come true)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Comments?

Scrap foodstamps and all kinds of benefits. Or make them laughably low. Replace them with Roosevelt-style public works, food-for-physical_labour style. I think some roads can be built and some toilets need cleaning.

3 posted on 01/12/2014 10:04:48 PM PST by Freelance Warrior (A Russian.)
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To: Freelance Warrior

My late father was in the Civilian Conservation Corps before joining the Marine Corps and going on to fight World War II, Korea and Vietnam. As the eldest, he had already been working as a hired man since the age of 12, but the CCC thing helped him send money home to a very hungry family.


4 posted on 01/12/2014 10:15:43 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet (Jealousy is when you count someone else's blessings instead of your own.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Convoluted writing but spot on.


5 posted on 01/12/2014 10:20:01 PM PST by Lorianne (fedgov, taxporkmoney)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
My late father was in the Civilian Conservation Corps ...

People of that generation weren't sluggards. Giving away money to able-bodied people is a crime.

6 posted on 01/12/2014 10:30:35 PM PST by Freelance Warrior (A Russian.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
There was a time where women went to college to get an MRS degree, and I am telling you that that time is today, there is nothing else of value in there. Sure, some college women go on to become doctors and CEOs, and some go on to become child pornographers and Salon writers, none of those things have anything to do with what happened in college. If you are going to college to get an education and not to meet guys, you are insane, literally insane, delusional, in reality one is never going to happen and the other is going to happen anyway, and you could have gotten both for free at a bookstore. Worked for me. The only question for the future single mom is whether it's worth $XXXXXX a year to meet guys, and the answer is of course it's not, even nightclubs let ladies in for free.

There is a lot of truth in here. I have been on record writing here back in 2008 or so that this depression was just as much a moral one as economic, and we will not get past it until we revert back to a much more traditional work ethic and outlook. Traditional marriage will make a comeback, because in the end, you can trust your family more than your government.

7 posted on 01/12/2014 11:02:29 PM PST by Vince Ferrer
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

““I’m sort of a foodie, and I’m not going to do the ‘living off ramen’ thing,” he said, fondly remembering a recent meal he’d prepared of roasted rabbit with butter, tarragon and sweet potatoes. “I used to think that you could only get processed food and government cheese on food stamps, but it’s great that you can get anything.””

This was the point in the article where I was hoping to see someone channel George C. Scott as Patton: “You’re going back to work, my friend! You may be selling hot dogs in a convenience store, or you may be freezing your butt off as a night watchman in a warehouse, but you’re getting off the taxpayer’s back and going back to the job market!”


8 posted on 01/13/2014 2:36:31 AM PST by DemforBush (Ice cream, Mandrake? Children's ice cream?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

My problem with this whole article was it is an obvious trap for conservatives. What does “they’re not even black” have to do with anything? For me, it is just set up to get people to claim how everyone who opposes the welfare industry is racist.


9 posted on 01/13/2014 2:37:18 AM PST by Organic Panic
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To: Organic Panic

Good catch!


10 posted on 01/13/2014 3:41:30 AM PST by caver (Obama: Home of the Whopper)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I majored in English. I’ve done just fine.


11 posted on 01/13/2014 4:00:20 AM PST by informavoracious (Root for Obamacare and healthcare.gov failure!)
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To: informavoracious

-— I majored in English. I’ve done just fine. -—

My daughter is minoring in English. I told her that communication skills are extremely important in every area of business.


12 posted on 01/13/2014 4:04:09 AM PST by St_Thomas_Aquinas ( Isaiah 22:22, Matthew 16:19, Revelation 3:7)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Well, it may not be the same group but my wife and I have been disturbed by the sudden appearance of very young panhandlers on the street corners in areas we've not seen them before. Young men AND young women with hard luck signs begging drivers for money.

It's never been so bad before. I know the economy in in the toilet, but this is an epic level of the number of beggars in the streets.

13 posted on 01/13/2014 4:31:32 AM PST by Caipirabob (Communists... Socialists... Democrats...Traitors... Who can tell the difference?)
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To: informavoracious

So did I. And minored in History and Creative Writing.

I also put myself though college without any student loans, and not from borrowing from the first national bank of dad.

To be honest, in my twenties and early thirties I struggled while I was climbing the ladder at my dream job. I had a second job waiting on tables, or working in bookstores, up until I turned 32. The idea of taking any handouts would have been shameful.


14 posted on 01/13/2014 5:55:58 AM PST by Gefn (RIP Holly, April 1999-December 31, 2013 the best cat ever)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

It’s not about hate. It is about ethics. The author misses the point entirely. If you are able, it is not moral or just to live off the effort of others.


15 posted on 01/13/2014 8:32:06 AM PST by Nuc 1.1 (Nuc 1 Liberals aren't Patriots. Remember 1789!)
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