34 Comments

  • Stefan, you're completely right about the failure of public schools. I'm 22 and most people my age don't understand the job market at all. Most believe the only reason to work is if you're passionate about it. One peer of mine has given up on so many careers because he didn't immediately love them. Now he's moving back home. Most of us are just waiting for someone to show us the way, because we were taught that all of our problems are for other people to solve. I escaped that trap, but most of my old friends haven't.

  • In May 2015, I was forced to resign from my $80k a year job. My salary history and work history showed that I was on track to making and additional $5-10k per year. The reason I resigned was due to a disability. I was unfortunate enough to suffer from a disease called Sarcoidosis. This was diagnosed in 2003, but my medical history shows that I had this disease from my time serving in the Air Force about 15 years prior to 2003.

    I was approved to receive SSDI on the first attempt, because I didn't apply for disability until the disease has progressed to such a degree that I was simply physically and mentally unable to work anymore. It is likely that I could have received disability many years prior to actually applying and getting SSDI payments.

    So, I traded in my 80K+ a year job for disability payments that total less than $20k per year.

    Needless to say, I would much rather be working. Even without the financial benefits, I was much happier working and even had a social life. Now, I am effectively house-bound, isolated and disconnected from the rest of the world except for regular visits to the doctor.

    I am also taking prescription pain killers. I take OxyContin 15mg 3 times daily, which barely meets my pain reducing needs, but I am reluctant to increase the dosage. I am required to see the doctor each month prior to receiving a refill and I have to provide urine samples every other month to verify I am not taking anything else, or excess opioids beyond my prescription. In additional to pain-killers, I am also on a variety of medication for other symptoms of my disease and an anti-depressant.

    I mention all this because many people tend to think of those on disability as 'takers' and 'moochers'. We are lazy, inept, scammers who would rather suck on the teat of the US government than earn a living for ourselves. I am routinely treated by most people because this is the type of messaging paradigm spouted routinely by those on the political right.

    To be sure, there are those that are scamming the system and could work, and those that are happier getting a one free dollar than earning $5. But this is the minority of people on SSDI. It is truly unfortunately that the 1% of abusers are treated as representative of the other 99% who hate the fact that we have no choice but to rely on SSDI, which by the way is an insurance program not a welfare program.

    I don't ask for any sympathy, but I wish it wasn't stated as a fact, or even inferred that disability is being used by anything more than a tiny percentage of people as a way to avoid work and get 'free' money.

  • Through my own poor choices I always had my reasons not to get a degree. And when I would consider going back to school, I would get resentful. I'd see the borderline autistic personalities that populated the educated high income professions (the surgeon that reads medical text books in their spare time). I'd see the bullshitters (the attorney who's fine with defending a raper because of a paycheck). And I'd see in the working world the most basic of idiots being employee of the month. I truly feel it takes an idiot to enjoy or even tolerate their work when all they do is put widgets in a box 60 hrs a week. Or the construction foreman that drinks peppermint schnapps on his breaks and farts to punctuate sentences with a smile on his face. Then I'd see Shaniqua on the phone with Human Services arguing for more welfare while she's getting her hair did with a child support check. And JosĂ© with one SS # for work, one for welfare, and 4 nice cars in the driveway.

    The disparity is real. As an at least somewhat intelligent person, how can I manage when my only options are work for low income around people who laugh at the stink of their farts, or get a bullshit piece of paper for 60k plus dollars on top of working 60/hrs a week just to pay the bills, and slug it out with autists and narcissists for the position?

    I went to work a lumber yard once and with my application they gave me a tape measure test, to see if I could read a tape. Jesus fucking Christ, why don't you give me a literacy test too? I'm a grown fucking man, if you can't read a tape at 25 you should probably just kill yourself. If thats the way it works why do I need university? I can go buy a couple of textbooks, maybe some flash cards or whatever, walk into the Smithsonian, and take a fucking history test. But no, you probably need a Master's Degree from an Ivy League college just to be a docent. Whatever.

    I'm at a point where I'm about to start selling my body and or it's parts just so I can negotiate my own sense of self worth. Is that a bit narcissistic? Yes, demonstrated my me answering my own rhetorical question, but somebody needs to take responsibility for me, and if I can't set my own standards, how can I take responsibility for myself?

  • Spot on in this video. I would just like to say that I see a system today in which the government is trying to create the outcomes they desire. You have a lot of hiring and promoting done with political correctness in mind. This is one of many major things that has ruined our free market system. And if you speak out, you are labeled a bigot or racist, good luck finding anything after that. I have seen many qualified, intelligent, and well rounded people, passed up for jobs or promotions due to political correctness. We live in a dictatorial society in which winners and losers are chosen. You can't even speak out against Islam. Richard Dawkins can't speak out against an idea called Islam. What is happening? I never thought growing up this was going to be the world I would grow up in. It is like I am in an alternate reality.

  • Not sure where Stefan is getting his numbers. But as a libertarian I understand basic Economics. So if there are companies who need to fill positions with IT workers, which produce more value than they get paid. And the H1B is not enough to supply the numbers needed by the industry. How so there are capable professionals without an offer, that don't need authorization (additional investment) to start working? The answer is simple this is just a plain false statement. Never heard about a candidate that was turn down because she/he is American. In fact that is the desirable condition to start the hiring process. Stefan, please check your facts otherwise you are going down like Jeff Berwick and his propaganda.

  • Unemployed. Seeking an alternative to working for a degenerate system is hard from within it. Yes I'd love to be one of the guys sowing revolution or reform at the least. My feelings of dissolution and alienation around my "culture" as a whole keeps me paralyzed. It is too big an enemy, what to do when you feel like an ant at the foot of the Tower of Babel? I'm starting to move towards ecological restoration and other areas that interest me. I refuse to play the game for now

  • i think your missing the total lack of respect employers have for employees. in japan they have a system like we had in the 50s were you went into a company expecting to grow through it and retire from it. now your not expected to stay in one place longer than 2 years. I've sat in meeting as an I.T. person for a college where they try to figure out how to screw over and infantilize employees through sensitivity training mandatory sexual harrasment training spending significant amounts of money for programs to clock employees in and out. after working for a college for 4 years while in school and being kept at 29.5 hours to deny benefits being classified as temporary part time for 4 years. one coworker forced the college into giving him full time status because he had worked 40hrs plus for more than a year. after graduating with honors with a stem degree from the college I got offered a full time position when someone quit which I took while waiting for grad school apps to roll through. i got a 30k starting salary and had to sit through meetings where the college was buying insurance guaranteeing their graduates a minimum starting salary of 35k. after more than a year when the sexual harassment training and the clocking in and out started we asked to be considered exempt salary just do we didnt have to punch a clock I got out of that mess. and this is a college supposedly one of the better more conscientious employers in America who treats their employees well. thank god I had a scholarship and worked my way through dept free. I.T. aloung with several fields are going all contract labor and while you can make money its a shady enterprise where your not going to collect unemployment be counted in statistics or from what i've seen file tax returns. this is kind of a two way street and you seem to be missing the other side of the aisle why would I want to work for a company that sees me a disposable. or register with the government to report earning and pay 35% of my income and thats before 8% sales tax property tax road use tax gas tax luxery goods tax. government mandated car insurance, government mandated health insurance.

  • I live in a horrifically small town and got black balled for employment here. A girl lied about me sexually harassing her at our largest employer, a hospital, and it was spread through all the HR departments. I'm now utterly and completely unemployable here and haven't even been considered for a job for the last 5 years.

  • I worked for insurance companies from 2004-2012 and I moved to CA and had a hard time finding office work. I had to retrain to be a pharmacy technician and worked from 2015-present. I have a degree. I no longer dream about getting ahead. I see countless young adults who are OK with working part time because that is all they can find. I serve people on disability selling pain pills to them.

  • Not gloating just saying what my situation is: B.S., In Organizational Communications, B.S., in Business Forensics (24 credit hours of account and finance since my mom was an account they were easy courses to take as electives], Minors in Human Resources Management and Change Management (in case I had to go back into retail after college), 3 Federal CERTS, 4 Languages including ASL, multiple Pluralsight and Udemy courses taken, MySQL Android iOS, 2 years experience as a Forensic Scientist for DoD [Obtained SCI Security Clearance] [before strategic re-alignment hit], 10+ years of warehouse experience before going to college; according to Robert Haft I am not able be hired by them because they only work with, "only opportunities they work with now would be too, "monotonous and boring," for someone with my background. Ha. [Ref. Brian Smith, Dublin, OH office. 877-752-3251]. My legal representative encouraged me to apply for stuff below my education level, of course I've been doing that, I've been turned down by 600 employers including Amazon, Pepsi/Ryder including places I used to work for. Remedy Staffing and 6 other agencies in Columbus refuse to even talk to me – as the need, "quote," "recent experience." Half Price Books, a used book store chain where I even have a known referral, refused to even interview me. College isn't the be and end all as my mom always said it was. As these hiring managers are afraid of people with education. [I even lied on one application and just said HS, but they came and asked why I didn't list my college edu after they did a background check]. If my iTunes projekts don't take off in two months, I'm going to be homeless and loose my wife and son; I'll be hitchhiking out to Portland. All my credit cards and student loans are going into charge off because I haven't had traditional day work in two years [I actually got fired for going to college because me manager claimed my, "efforts weren't with them." [Ref. Cindy Long, Tri-Village Huntington, 614-480-0020]. This world is failing apart and is going to burn like a lot us. Thanks for your time. -Chris

  • You're exactly on the mark. My father worked for a copper mining company and we learned that going to work every day at 5am was part of life. We also learned how to deal with work related situations from his experiences.

  • Interesting info about young people who are happier not working than College Graduates.

    In my experiences over the last 30 years I have found this to be true in some trades. Some young workers, when given a chance to get on the job training screw up their chances by being very unreliable with respect to coming to work consistently.

    My son, (who has supervised some of the these workers, and himself is under 30) doesn't understand it either.

    For example, you have a person (mostly males in my experiences) who work overtime and gets time and a half on a weekend who then doesn't show up for work on Monday. Or, knowing that there is a possibility of being asked to work overtime in the future, won't show up for work that day so they can't be asked.

    Or a person who always has excuses why they have to come to work late or leave early.

    This has been increasing over the last 20 years or so, in my observations. And not for minimum wage jobs, but entry level jobs that pay multiples of the minimum wage, with benefits.

  • This response comes a couple days later than intended, but we are in the process of moving, and with home improvement projects and all the moving related work, I have been really busy. All of that said, I want to give my personal situation for your collection of anecdotes. I'm a 41 year old guy who has been an automotive mechanic since age 18. I spent 14 years at a Toyota dealership before landing a job with the Memphis utility company, MLGW, where I worked for 7 years. I had an epiphany at MLGW, at which point I began to realize that the type of physical conditions I was working in would become extremely difficult as I age, and having cognitive ability significantly above average, I began investing, saving, and planning to allow a career change. I majored in mechanical engineering, and attended school part-time, but I knew the day job I was working was making me too drained physically to put the proper focus that such a pursuit warranted at my age. During this time period, I also met my fiancĂ©, who is a civil engineer with a master's degree and P.E. designation. She has a genuine confidence in my industry and abilities, and is behind me 100%. We ended up relocating to broaden her employment options and pay, at which time I "jumped from the airplane" of a government job. I began attending my engineering courses full-time, and maintained a 4.0 GPA. I was appalled to discover that even a science based course, such as engineering, was not removed from leftist indoctrination, which was replete throughout the course. At the same time I was experiencing frustration with the quality of the courses, I began to realize that a 4 year degree is basically a myth, especially for STEM majors. I had to regroup, since I knew my finances would not carry me quite that far, and I didn't want to burden my fiancĂ© financially, so I did a spreadsheet analysis of web development and mechanical engineering, accounting factors like taxation, educational costs, delayed earnings due to schooling, student debt with interest, etc.; and I decided to go with web development, which essentially has no formal educational requirements. Crystal and I recently bought a home together, which combined with the rental house I funded for the last year at $20k, has exhausted a significant portion of my resources. I still have enough in reserve to hopefully tide me over until I can become employable or land freelance work. In essence, I have been unemployed for just over 1 year now, which is the only significant gap I have had in labor force participation since 18. I am not receiving government subsidies of any sort, nor do I have health insurance. This has been my story, as it pertains to employment/unemployment. I'd love to come on the show if such opportunity was afforded.

  • Yea the Affordable Care Act has also led to a lower life expectancy for the first time in decades. Bernie Sanders wants to double down, this is truly getting scary, civil war scary.

  • When you re forcibly interned and psychiatrically tortured eventhougn you have good rĂ©fĂ©rences from employers the conclusion is that the state does not want you to work, l'm currently interned and forcibly adminstered antipsychotics, to come off these chemicals is very difficult and dĂ©licate because if you try to cold turkey you just find that your behavior is seriously affected by the side effects and this can be actually dangerous to yourself or others, this if and when it happens is simply used to reinforce the original diagnostic of depression, bi polar disorder etc etc… The pharmaceutical industry is Killing millions of people every year, mostly in western countries. I'm commited and will fight,

  • I could qualify in the category you describe I work odd jobs though am not employed I consider myself self employed and what days I have off work I work on farming or carpentry or on the Internet. I have learn far more form life after high school than before and I think I am learning to negotiate since Trump was in I have had more work. I still love at home and don't make enough money to buy property or a car so I live with my parents. I need to get independent economically by this time next year or go to community college I have not been so industrious because of the my terrible senior year. But watch an anime called Naruto, being with my family, and listening to Stefan's podcasts has helped me understand what I went through. Well most of all my faith has thought I really appreciate what Stefan does giving moral direction to people especially to the atheist.

  • Can someone explain this? First he says 22% unemployed, then 30% unemployed, then he says it's a struggle to get to 60% employment. Would that mean he's now saying 40% unemployment? Like he basically doubled the first (and most reliable) stat he gave by half way through the video.

    Am I misinterpreting this?

  • I did all custom trim carpentry work on high end homes. had accident. had surgery. Was in hospital for weeks on Dilaudid. Got out of the hospital dope sick (withdrawaling) and on significantly lower dosages of painkillers so I went out and found a heroin dealer. All withing 2 years I lost my job, and a second one. Lost my home, two cars, pawned all my tools, and valuables. Ended up squatting rigging electricity to a vacant duplex. Eventually got caught in the streets with Coke and heroin (I was hooked on speedballing) got a felony charge. I ended up signing up for a suboxone program. I've been clean off all illegal substances for 1 & 1/2 years, but now I get sick if I don't take my Subutex. No one wants to hire me, and im so fucked off I haven't left my house in year. I lay in bed and learn stuff online, and play video games..which I never thought I would have the time for, but here I am. Watching life, and the life in me slowly drain away, sick every morning. I'm hoping that when I'm off probation I can move somewhere that doesn't look down on people like me. Texans are harsh on people who are depressed and suffering from addiction. Hell I was fine until the hospital started shooting me up with one of the most powerful opiates they can give you (Dilaudid). Your welcome.

  • Trudeau just told the u s a that he will take all the trans gender soilders from the us army and give them jobs in the canadian army…..you have to think outside the box……or have one……..

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