Americans Don’t Want to Return to Lousy Low Wage Jobs

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The work participation rate has been in decline for a couple decades. The trend predates Covid19 and the associated Covid stimulus money. Those arguing that people are lazy or don’t want to work are ignoring the reality that there are costs connected to work. Daycare costs, transportation costs, meals, etc can eat up huge portions of ones pay. Someone making $10 an hour ($2.75 more than min wage) will only take home $338 a week after tax (everyone pays FICA). Daycare alone on low end can be $200 a week. Average tank of gas is $50. That’s over 70% ones pay just to facilitate going to work. At that rate it isn’t worth working at all.


If you go to work 40 hours a week and you can’t afford to live anywhere, buy food, and have medical coverage then WHAT IS THE FUCKING POINT OF GOING TO WORK?


Labor unions, once the seed of fair compensation, job safety and respect for an essential working class that kept America running efficiently more often than not, the land of opportunity and home ownership for so many, have been decimated by politics and the corporate king that fuels and controls it. America’s workforce is primarily one of essential workers who tirelessly do their jobs so we have fresh produce, medical staff in clean facilities, meat for non-vegans, teachers for our kids and more. These are the jobs that once kept the U.S.A. humming along. The workers periodically tried to enlighten us on the myriad of worth they represent as a living, breathing whole, consistently lobbying for a living wage. Until now, that was the norm. The year of COVID has been the year of awakening, financially hopeful for many, financially painful to a select, self-absorbed few. When billionaires profiteer from a pandemic while essential workers barely survive, it’s clear we live in a world that’s been renovated by the absurd greed of a thriving minority who complain when the majority wants it’s fair and just due.


Don’t call us middle class. The only way we’re middle class is if the other two classes are a rock and a hard place. We’re working class, and we’re only cash cows to the powers that be. God forbid a billionaire put up with the shit I have to deal with in retail.


Turns out that getting a stable wage, combined with not working 3 jobs is popular. Last year’s unemployment plus the extra $600, (later followed by the extra $300), gave many something that they never experienced before: economic stability. Even though it’s temporary, people got a taste, and imagine that, they enjoyed actually having money and free time to breathe. The problem isn’t unemployment. That’s the GOP excuse. They blame unemployment, and say it’s made the very people they called “essential” just last year, “lazy”. If you pay your employees such a shit wage, and conditions at your working pace are so shitty, (people refusing to wear a mask, lying about being vaccinated, and getting violent when they were challenged at the door), I don’t blame people for choosing to stay home and get paid better. That’s a “you” problem as an employer. How do I know this? Because, the places that are paying a living wage, and treat their employees like actual people, (and kick the Karens and Kevins the fuck out when they acted like fools), don’t have a worker shortage. You also don’t see nearly as many worker shortages in non-retail jobs that had their people working from home, away from assholes. The places that didn’t just force everyone back, just because the CDC and state governments were bullied into giving up, remain popular and staffed too, Some people never stopped working. The lucky ones got to work from home, and liked that too. The benefit to mental health, of not having to deal with traffic and other assorted horseshit, (pissing money away on gas, car maintenance, and prepackaged frozen meals), is also popular. I don’t blame those people for not wanting to go back to the old way of doing shit, in-person social interaction be damned.