I now know a handful of bright people – some family, some friends, some young all smart and competent – who are victims of what is becoming a growing economic hysteria, made worse by media… and blogs. This from the Washington Post:
New unemployment figures from the Department of Labor show average new jobless claims for the past four weeks up more than 200,000 from a year ago to their highest level since Dec. 1982.
The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll found job cuts reaching a broad swath of Americans: nearly two in 10 reported they or someone in their household had lost a job in the past few months, and almost three in 10 said their household had been hit with a pay cut or reduced hours at work.” [Source]
It seems like a suggestion that Pennsylvania’s largest city – the city of firsts, the workshop of the world, the first great city of the United States – isn’t good enough. Or as Fred Anton, head of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association, told eminent Daily News columnist John Baer, Philly isn’t “exotic” enough. His recent most column lambasted the 109-year-old celebration:
Cancel next month’s Pennsylvania Society weekend in New York City, or curtail it, or work on moving it to its home state.
In the worst economy since the Great Depression, with 1.2 million jobs lost this year, with state unemployment at 5.7 percent, the highest rate since right after Gov. Rendell took office in ’03, with the city facing job cuts and a $1 billion shortfall, it just strikes me as a tad unseemly to, you know, party hearty. [Source]
Poor people are less likely to have bank accounts, which can be expensive for those with low balances, and so they tend to cash their pay checks at check-cashing businesses, which, in cities surveyed, charged $5 to $50 for a $500 check.
Nationwide, low-income car buyers, defined as people earning less than $30,000 a year, pay 2 percentage points more for a car loan than more affluent buyers.
Family friend Lee-Ellen Pisauro shared with me a warm piece she had featured in this month’s edition of Exceptional Parent, a magazine for parents of children or young adults with disabilities.
The mag doesn’t share it’s content online, so I thought I would – it’s brief and isn’t losing them a darn dime.
The Wisdom of a Child
By Lee-Ellen Pisauro
My four-year-old son, Steven, is wise beyond his years. His faith is so strong. His belief in “the good” does not waiver.
When my second son, Sam, was born, friends and family members assured my husband and me that Steven was the perfect big brother for Sam. After all, he is so gentle, loving and compassionate. I was sure everyone said this to take the sting away from the diagnosis. Sam was born with Down syndrome.
Recently, I stumbled upon one of my favorite contributions to a newspaper I’ve ever read, “Seeking Wisdom,” a note by Philadelphia Weekly‘s Editor Tim Whittaker from last April.
Whenever he was facing a dilemma or required a bit of counseling or simply needed relief from the assault of everyday fools, he’d hunt down Wisdom. Ethical crisis, love impasse, job dustup, financial quandary, whatever, Wisdom was his go-to guy. With Wisdom, he learned, it was best to express your predicament quickly and directly.
“Cut to the chase, my man,” he’d say the second a story seemed it might have a beginning and a middle.
Once, five years back, he went to Wisdom torn up about two girls he thought he liked equally. Wisdom asked if he was certain beyond doubt he couldn’t keep both.