Jobless Recovery--that's what they call it when the people who make the rules keep their own personal economy humming, while you have no job.
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Daily Cheap Reads is an excellent site to find the latest in great bargain priced and free Kindle books. The site also posts reviews. Check out Jobless Recovery today. Find out what happens when greed rears its ugly head in a once prosperous North Carolina city.
Saturday, January 8, 2011
Guest post by Joe Tremaine, a character from my novel, Jobless Recovery. Joe can scare you sometimes, but he's an okay guy. Sort of.
Thanks, L.C. I'm going to start my post with a few questions. Probably going to end it that way, too.
So. What are you supposed to do when your country gets economically dismantled by a few greedy people at the top? Do you sit there and believe the lies about the jobless recovery? Not unless you want to starve. I'm going to tell you something--if it's jobless, it's not a recovery. I'll bet you know that already. Seems everybody except the people in Washington and the media know that. If you want to engineer your own recovery, you need a job.
Yeah, I know. That's what we all want. But how far do we go?
I've thought about that question every day since I heard that my neighbor Martha--a sixty-one-year old grandmother who goes to church twice a week--has finally found herself a job. Martha calls herself a phone actress. I don't need to explain what that is.
After I got dumped from my government job, I did handyman work for a while and now I'm an Internet psychic. Don't judge. It pays the bills and it's kind of fun. I don't believe there are any legal jobs I wouldn't do to keep myself alive. I'd even oil my body up and dance for Chippendales.
Man, I can see that. Middle-aged guy with a bum knee prancing around the stage at Vegas wearing a bow tie and not too much else. I'd do it--if I could get that job. It's not like I've been discovered by the Chippendale talent scouts.
How about you? Would you be willing, for example, to pick vegetables in the fields or work in a meat processing plant? That's assuming, of course, that they paid enough, so you wouldn't have to live in a one-room shack with a dozen other people.
Anybody care to weigh in? Where would you draw the line? Remember, we're talking legal jobs.
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
What's an unemployed computer jockey to do?
This is an extremely satisfying read. It opens doors that are at half-tilt and layers tension on tension, but with a sense of humor. What does Joe have in the back of his pickup truck? And will Dave's final wish come true? "Yeah, one day the country, and maybe the world, would return to government of the people, by the people instead of government by the greedy."
I can't recommend this book enough. It truly is a Must Read--Barbara Silkstone, author of The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland, Age 42 and Three-Quarters.
The three main characters--Dave, Joe, and Lark, and wonderfully brought to life. I was totally involved in their predicament and was rooting for them all the way. More than this, however, what made this novel stand out for me, was the deft touch author Evans has with contemporary social commentary. I really kept expecting some hard-handed political diatribe at every turn, but she manages to serve up biting, humorous social satire (witness the riotous phone calls that Dave makes to clueless government officials at the unemployment office) without seeming to take a political position. She skewers big business as much as big government. I dare you to guess her political persuasion. --Patricia Rockwell, author of Sounds of Murder
If you never read another book this year, read this one.--Martha A. Cheves, author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat
"Jobless Recovery--A thrilling revisit of The Grapes of Wrath." Barbara Silkstone, author of The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland, Age 42 and Three-Quarters
Jobless Recovery is fiction. Really.
About the book:
Dave Griffin is a poster boy for the American consumer. He drives a blood-colored Behemoth model SUV, has a new home in the suburbs, a beautiful girlfriend, a great job, and all the benefits that come with middle class life in America. Then Dave's employer replaces American computer programmers with cheaper imported labor in order to increase company profits. Soon Dave is out on the street. But he still believes in the system. All he has to do is bring the problem to the attention of the media and the people in Washington to get results, right? Wrong. Very wrong.
Meanwhile, Dave's friend Joe Tremaine, a former FBI agent, is struggling to stay sane. Cynical Joe knows better than to trust anyone in Washington or in corporate America. He embroils Dave in his fraudulent money-making schemes, and when Joe decides to educate the powerful senator who has been the driving factor in eliminating American jobs, his plan goes awry. Can an unemployed computer jockey manage to keep Joe--and himself--under the radar? Or will the oddly-shaped bundle in the back of Joe's truck lead to big trouble with the feds?
The part in the book about American tech workers losing their jobs to cheaper tech workers imported from India is absolutely true. Have Americans had to train their replacements? Absolutely true. Are the imported workers paid less than the Americans? Absolutely.
Outsourcing is bad--jobs go to China, India, or wherever. But insourcing, bringing workers to the United States on work visas to undercut wages and take jobs from Americans right in this country, is far worse. It is absolutely true that this is happening.
I called Washington (many times) and I was told this is legal and there's nothing I can do about it. I even have it in writing from the U.S. Department of Labor that the H-1B law is full of loopholes and there are no protections whatsoever for American workers. The worker importation laws were signed into law by President Clinton. Since then, you can see what's happened to the economy. I have called senators and representatives, the White House, The U.S. Department of Labor, and the U.S. Department of Commerce. I received absurd answers very much like those given to my main character in the book. It's all a bunch of meaningless government speak that does nothing to address the fact that our country is being economically dismantled.
For so many years Americans have been expected to drive the world economy with consumerism, but how are we to do this without jobs? Every company wants the benefits of doing business in the U.S. with its stable government and relatively affluent consumer base, but they don't want to hire Americans and pay American wages and adhere to American labor laws. At the same time they expect Americans to fight and die in the U.S. military to protect their interests. First they told us we didn't want service jobs, so when those went away we were told to upgrade our skills and get manufacturing jobs. When those went away, they told us to get an education and get tech jobs. Now those are gone to outsourcing and insourcing and we're told that it's globalization and we are supposed to "deal with it." We've been lied to you and thrown by the wayside.