Monday, September 23, 2013

The Increasing Desire to "Get Fired and Collect Unemployment"

I was in Casper, Wyoming.  And it was not just me, but no less than a full quarter of the staff that confessed they hated their jobs so much they were hoping to get fired so they could collect unemployment.

And those were only the people who confessed.

I thought it was just the galactically craptasticness of the bank I worked for, but in hindsight and retrospect, I'm starting to realize that employment in America has been become so damaging to one's psychology, so hostile to a sane brain, that the "shame" that comes with getting fired has become moot.  So bad has your average job become that people, particularly the youth, don't give a damn any more and the "shame" that was employed by elder generations no longer works.

Nobody cares about having the "perfect resume."

Nobody cares about "having a gap in their employment."

Nobody cares about "getting a good reference."

No, the situation has become so bad most youth (and not so young) are throwing in the towel, admitting there is no "career" to be had and are now BEGGING TO GET FIRED SO THEY CAN COLLECT UNEMPLOYMENT.

Of course to the corporate gray-haired automotons with perked lips and chaffed knees who somehow managed to thrive in this vile environment and now head up corporate America, they cannot understand this.  They were accustomed to having desperate youth beg and plead for just the opportunity to prove themselves that unpaid internships came into existence.  They were accustomed to be able to have youth do the most belittling and berating of tasks because they needed the money.  They were perhaps even enjoying creating a work environment where sanity, production, logic, and effort had no bearing on success and got their kicks out of making younger people dance and jump through hoops as they arbitrarily replaced logic with ass-kissing rules.  But now with more and more people begging to get fired, there is a sea change afoot.

Of course, people have always wanted to quit their jobs, but had to stick with it at least to pay the bills.  But there are two things that are making this a reality - forced frugal living and no hope for a future.  After 5 years of debt forgivingness, personal bankruptcies, and minimalizing forced on them by recession, there are by my estimation millions of people from 18-45 who have scaled down and can get by on a lot less.  Also, with no real hope in sight after 5 years, most people have given up hope and no longer desire to obey in the vain hopes they are rewarded with a promotion or high-paying career.  they know it's a scam.  No, most are in it to get paid and that's it.  Corproate loyalty is dead.

Sadly, for HR directors and bosses, this means the leverage or power they once held is completely gone (or at least dimishing rather quickly).  With a generation burnt out and jaded so quickly and so early, they have already given up hope and don't care to try to "excel" in their career, leaving employers and HR reps no power or strings to pull.  You can't get "Bob" to come in on the weekend because he doesn't believe his future is with your company, he doesn't believe there is any chance you'll treat him fairly, and he just as soon get fired because he hates you and the job so much.  Besides, if he does go on the dole it's all those middle, senior and executive type people who pay the 50% tax rate to support his unemployment.  And beyond that, he's been trained the past 5 years to get by on unreliable and minimal income.  He doesn't need a job, just a small unemployment check.  And most employers have not made the marginal income difference between the two worth suffering the psychotic inanities of the corporate world.

No, it will be a very interesting labor market in the next 10 years.  Millions of unemployed youth, all with college degrees, and a spoiled corporate sector that thinks it can get away with abusing applicants by forcing them to talk to legions of 25 year old HR ditzes asking about favorite colors.  Only to find out those youth are even more arrogant and entitled than the HR ditz and (since they never had any hope in the future) decide they only want to get fired so they can collect unemployment.

Congratulations corporate America and older generations, you've completely disincentived the younger generations to the point you can no longer take advantage of them.

We all just ask you senior, upper and executive management types work extra hard to pay the taxes to support us as we loaf around.

And before you get upset about those "darned kids" living off of the dole and not taking life serious, just ask yourself who you were expecting to finance your social security and medicare...or...well...I mean, who did you think was going to pay for it jobs those youth just won't be able to pay the taxes to pay for it.

Enjoy the decline!


macengr said...

You should love this article - come in early, volunteer for extra work, etc - do more for free!

Steven said...

You also have to take into account the fact that most women in North America are not marriage-material and therefore never will be. Why would a 24 year old man, like myself, work hard to provide for a girl who gave it away for free when she was younger, hotter, tighter and 20 pounds lighter?

As men, we can survive on very little. And as you said, the stigma on being on unemployment is fading quickly.

Anonymous said...

You should also add that with the continuing Quantitative Easing, a la Weimar, those corporate retirement accounts will at the end of the day buy one nothing more than a pack of cigarettes or perhaps a bottle of cheap booze.

I personally see a collapse coming but I'm hoping that it's merely a gentle decline.

Donttreadonmatt said...

Interesting. It is far easier for youth to go Galt than those who have homes, cars, boats, etc. to fund and maintain. College grads know how to get by on very little, living with roommates, in their parents basement, in a shitty apartment - the mental shock of returning to those living conditions is not as great because they aren't far removed from it, if they ever left it at all. The government tried to scare the shit out of these kids by making student loan debt not settled in bankruptcy, but the kids have called their bluff. They are just refusing to pay back the loans, because they can't find good jobs and have no hope in the future.

Oh, the delicious irony.

Glen Filthie said...

Hmpfff. 'Hoping to get fired'.

Nah, not for me. If I felt like that I would quit.

I prefer an earlier lecture of yours Cap, where you counsel the young to flip off such employers, and go look for a real job. Everyone has a cratered resume these days. 80% of employers are fart suckers and cheats...but you won't find a good one unless you keep looking! Don't give up, there ARE good jobs out there.

sth_txs said...

Awesome post! This is exactly how I felt when I took my first real job in 1999 out of college.

After it was all said and done, my monthly check was not all that much better than as a funded graduate student. I'm still not that much better off, but at least I don't work myself to death for what I get.

Karl said...

BRAVO! I too tried to get fired from my last job. I eventually had to quit.

Yes, the middle-mgmt gray-hairs are to blame, but don't forget our enlightened liberals out there that voted for endless unemployment benefits. This problem, and every spinoff problem coming soon to a EBT-friendly store near you, started with them.

Cail Corishev said...

It also doesn't help when the bosses are bragging about how they love to hire from overseas as much as possible because American workers are so stupid and lazy. When you know that your boss would gladly replace you with someone he can barely understand if he could just get the government to give him more guest worker visas, why would you have any loyalty to him?

Stg58/Animal Mother said...

Do y'all live in any states with oil & gas action? It's a little different world than the one you are describing.

tbone said...

I couldn't agree more with this post.
The corporate slog is exploitative and just not worth it anymore. You have zero equity or residual value for all the work you put in, which typically means you are at the mercy of some parasitic, no-skill-having, sociopathic middle manager.
To hell with that! I'd rather take an entrepeneurial moonshot, and failing that, move to a trailer and chill out with a cold beer. Hell, even poor people have flat screens and cable.

Dennis Mangan said...

What Cail Corishev said.

Anonymous said...

Nobody cares about having the "perfect resume."

Because you can just make shit up and no one checks. In most cases, checking isn't even possible.

Nobody cares about "having a gap in their employment."

Because it says nothing about your ability to get and hold a job.

Nobody cares about "getting a good reference."

Because no one will give any sort of reference for fear of being sued. All they will do is verify employment history.

Anonymous said...

Why would a 24 year old man, like myself, work hard to provide for a girl who gave it away for free when she was younger, hotter, tighter and 50 pounds lighter?

There. Fixed it for ya.

Anonymous said...

A friend of mine, working in insurance, once went all-in, trying to get fired.
It was like watching office space (the movie) play itself out in real life (he was rapidly promoted to just under board level).
He gave up after a year and resigned - but it was quite entertaining to witness the process of him racing through the ranks..

Anonymous said...

Sorry young ones, but your mass validation of unemployment is just a smoke screen for being lazy little pukes who can't or won't compete. I agree that middle management and HR is full of useless assholes that do nothing but get in the way, but you're using that as an excuse NOT to try. And for that I say grow a pair or perish!!

Cail Corishev said...

Anon, compete for what? Did you read the post? The whole point is that there isn't anything in the corporate world worth competing for anymore. They've been bringing down real wages for decades, and jobs rarely last long enough to pay you back for working the mailroom to get started. Do too well despite everything, and they'll replace you with a foreigner who will work cheape-- er, I mean harder.

If you're going to work hard, at least do it for yourself, not for a corporation and a government (because you can't support one without supporting the other) that consider you an inconvenience at best and an enemy at worst.

Anonymous said...

"Only to find out those youth are even more arrogant and entitled than the HR ditz"

So, it's "arrogant" and "entitled" to want to be treated with dignity and not being taken advantage of ?

Anonymous said...

For those idiots who say that foreigners will do the work under worse conditions and worse pay and benefits that Americans won't do, I will respond. The foreigners can work like this in part because they've never had any better. Once they've had better, they don't want to be treated like expendable garbage again. Next, the foreigners get job experience and hiring preferences that native born Americans often don't. Then these same foreigners as an average individual take more out of the social service system from the tax payer and government than the average individual citizen in educating their children, food stamps, emergency medical care etc. while being more likely to be in jail and prison etc. Also, these same foreigners will either get better jobs and better lifestyle or go home. Where does the native born citizen have to retreat to after being treated like crap for 7 years(maybe more, maybe less years) of servitude to live like a king? He doesn't, but the foreigner does.

faithless cycnic said...

I worked 17 years in banking and suddenly could not meet quality standards. I was initially upset and redoubled my efforts to meet the impossible goal. One day something snapped and I just said FUGGIT. I was fired and got 99 sweet, wonderful weeks of unemployment compensation. No one would hire me due to the gray hair factor, since racial discrimination is illegal but age discrimination is cool. I got 2 years off, fixed my marriage, took some courses I was interested in, and generally took things easy. Today, I have a small business and work temp jobs for extra money. FUCK THE CORPORATE PLANTATION WITH A RED HOT, ROTATING, RECTANGULAR RAMROD

Anonymous said...

I'm 60 and I been playing survivor in a craptastic multinational that doesn't nothing but add layer about layer of useless bureaucracy while offshoring jobs as fast as they can and laying off US employees every quarter.

I can't get raises or a promotion, although I'm an excellent performer and have top-drawer skills. This year, not even a raise for being a star performer. In fact, they played with the 401K so that the corporate match isn't paid out until 12/15/13 - but only if you're still employed.

Meanwhile the workload has become intolerable. 10-15% overtime is expected for salaried people.

Of course, the executive class is making out like bandits while the company is gradually failing because of poor service and poor quality and lack of innovation.

So, I'm very much thinking to get on the next layoff list and say to hell with the brutal environment.

Anonymous said...

Steven wrote:

"As men, we can survive on very little."

Steven, as a man I don't even need to survive.

If I have to be an employee and job seeker in this world then I choose DEATH !!!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous wrote:

"And for that I say grow a pair or perish!!"

Dear anonymous, this is how world wars are started. See you on the battlefield you worthless piece of trash !!!

If I grow a pair, YOU are the one who will perish.

Anonymous said...

I would suggest anyone younger than a Boomer give serious thought to working black market. You're being chumped with a fiat currency stripped of it's value even before considering (misreported) inflation.

Notice how quickly BitCoins were considered a valid currency once a breath of (taxable) profit appeared. The Fed and it's minions know full well what they're doing to the US dollar (USD), and they'd be stupid not to have a plan in place for when USD loses it's reserve currency status or offshore interests simply lose interest in propping up USD. But it's *their* plan, not yours. You're not really much of a factor. You need your own plan.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous wrote:

"I would suggest anyone younger than a Boomer give serious thought to working black market."

Why even bother with a market at all. Why must we absolutely market anything or buy and sell anything or work for somebody else for money ?

The decision that our society made to let market forces dictate everything we do is the problem.

Fortunately, there is a burgeonning solution. Adrian Bowyer's Wealth Without Money proposition.

With the advent of 3D printing and other self-production methods, we will be less reliant on the market to sustain ourselves and have our needs met.

Automation and technology can be applied both ways, two can play at this game.

Anonymous said...

If companies can use technology to no longer need workers.

Then citizens can use technology to no longer need companies and their products.

heresolong said...

Is it really that the jobs are that much worse or just that you didn't used to have the option of the taxpayer subsidizing you for 99 weeks if you decided to quit?

Anonymous said...

Bravo. This post is full of such accurate and righteous anger, I can only leave this comment and applaud out loud to show my appreciation.

Applying and interviewing for jobs is so fucking painful, as is working jobs for mindless, soul sucking employers simply to survive in this awful economic system.

Something needs to change.

Anonymous said...

You all will love this:

Man forced to dance during job interview

Anonymous said...

I don't know how your state does it, but in Indiana, you have to NOT be fired for cause to draw unemployment. If you get paid off since the plant slowed down, or closed, then sure, but if you're fired for cause and the company disputes your unemployment claim, you get nothing. And any company I know of fights all claims, unless it was the above-mentioned closing or layoff.

The only one I know who gets over is the outdoor building tradesman who is off through the winter on unemployment, then makes mad money the rest of the year. If you're in an industry where you KNOW there's no work for three months, why are you eligible for comp? That's for people who were broadsided by a layoff, not those who have all year to sock it away for the dead winter.

Anonymous said...

Here is an interesting Paper written Robert Nielsen a student in UCD.

Thought provoking, and definatley something for those who think it's time to screw the unemployed!

Captain Cae Os

RevLifestyleDesign said...

Hey Captain,

Solid post here, an entire generation is waking up and not wanting to be a white collar slave. This is why I make sure to tell every young guy to start building his exit plan to self employment in his early 20's and not have to suffer 40 years of slavery.

American Artie said...

Unfortunately, you are correct regarding the stigma of unemployment. But what is also fading in America is personal dignity, personal initiative, personal PRIDE and self-respect. Part of our country's "wussification" as well - unwillingness to accept responsibility or accountability. But some folks are OK with that because the government is increasingly there with the freebies.