Unemployment today

From the Daily Beast’s Reihan Salam

[W]ithout trivializing the psychic trauma involved, there’s no getting around the fact that it is in many respects much easier to be unemployed now than it was in the Reagan-Volcker era. And if that’s true, “blaming” President Obama for a high unemployment rate seems faintly absurd. Is it the president’s fault that Americans are better off than they were 30 years ago, and are thus not desperate to take whatever job that comes along? […] This isn’t necessarily a bad thing for society. One can imagine workers using an extended spell of unemployment as an opportunity to gain new skills and to spend time with loved ones.

Having been largely “unemployed” myself for a very long time this rings true. My two Grandfather’s faced bouts of unemployment in the 1930’s and 1940’s that gave them depression, migraine headaches, anxiety attacks and in one case a fatal heart attack.

My most immediate family’s bread winner has been my wife. This has caused me some embarrassment but I’m almost sixty and I still seem to have my good health while leaving me time to fight for some good civic causes.

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