It’s interesting, but the average unemployment check is greater than what one would make at a minimum wage job, and some folks do live on that. Granted, one would likely have to curtail one’s lifestyle, but it can be done.
You seem to suggest that the purpose of unemployment benefits is to keep one in the same financial position one was in prior to being laid off. That would be a pretty sweet deal.
No, I’m not suggesting that at all. But let me give you a weird example. One day I had a veteran come to see me at my suburban office to register for work. As I normally would do, I took a look at his wages for the last four quarters on my computer. His were in the multi-millions every quarter! Curious, I asked him about that. He said he had sold his insurance company (company, not just an agency) to a French firm and as part of the sale had agreed to stay on as an employee for six months. Now he was at our office to apply for UI since it was the first time he’d ever been an employee of someone else and eligible to apply. Do you think he really needed our $250 a week? LOL But no, it wasn’t designed to live on, only to barely tide you over as you looked for another job.