RUSH: Kathy in Marquette, Michigan. Welcome to the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. Dittos from a 23-year-old unemployed college graduate.
RUSH: Wow. I’m great to have you here. Thank you.
CALLER: Yeah. Well, I just want to tell you, Rush, I’ve been listening for probably over ten years now, and I just want to thank you so much for the education that I’ve gotten. I really appreciate what you do.
RUSH: Thank you so much. I appreciate that.
CALLER: Well, I’ve been working since I was about 15-years-old, and recently been laid off from my job, and reading this article —
RUSH: What kind of job? What kind of job did you have?
CALLER: I was a restaurant manager at a fine dining steakhouse.
RUSH: Oooh! A restaurant manager at a fine dining steakhouse. In Marquette?
CALLER: (giggling) Yes.
CALLER: And —
RUSH: Does that mean you’re a steak expert?
CALLER: No, I’m not. I’m more of a managing-people expert than I am a steak expert, I have to admit.
RUSH: Okay, you manage people. That’s cool.
CALLER: Thank you. (laughs) I have to say that hearing this article about these people who are somehow so happy, now that they’ve lost their jobs, is a little bit frustrating to me. I can tell you that I haven’t met any of those people myself. Now being unemployed for the first time in a long time, I’m wondering where the money to pay my student loans is going to come from, and —
CALLER: — I wonder where they —
RUSH: Can you hang on through a brief commercial break? I want to seriously talk about this with you.
RUSH: Kathy in Marquette, Michigan, thank you very much for waiting.
CALLER: Yeah, no problem, Rush.
RUSH: Okay. So you’re 23, you said, and you’ve just been laid off; this is your first time?
CALLER: Yes. I mean I’ve worked for so long now, and just have been laid off, and this article that you were talking about today, I just wonder where they found these people. I mean one man said —
RUSH: See, now, that is an interesting question. It’s a fascinating question because it’s the first time in my life that I have read a story about how happily the unemployed are unemployed.
RUSH: And what they’re doing with their newfound time and there’s no stigma now attached to it. That’s interesting since —
CALLER: Well, yes. They’re starting clubs for people that are unemployed now, a newly formed society of people who are making the best of being laid off, is what the article says. And that just, to me, seems ridiculous. I’m wondering what these people are going to do when, in a month or two, they actually need a job and they can’t find one, if they’re going to be quite so happy as they are now.
RUSH: Well, the article — correct me if I’m wrong — does say that many of these happily unemployed admit they’re going to have to look for a job and some are even starting now.
CALLER: Yes, it said that some are kind of looking around here or there.
RUSH: See, that’s not the point. Your question, how did these people get found?
RUSH: Where did the Boston Globe find these people? See, that’s the question. And the answer is, okay, you go to the newsroom of the Boston Globe. You have a starting point. The starting point is there’s no bad news for Barack Obama.
RUSH: He can’t fail; he’s too big to fail. So somebody in the newsroom says, you know what, I was talking to somebody who told me that there’s some people out there actually enjoying being laid off, I think we need to find a couple of them and write a story about them. The reason for the story is to cast this aside, this whole notion that unemployment is horrible and crisis inducing and full of pain and suffering. We’ve gotta make it out to be a positive, and since there’s so many people unemployed, we can remove the stigma and we’ll turn it into a positive about how people are learning more about their dogs and cats, they’re learning more about their kids, they’re taking pictures and posting them in coffeehouses, all this wonderful stuff. This is designed to create the opposite of what life is like in America when you lose your job. Now, because Obama’s there, because Obama cares and because we got the stimulus, these people are going to get their job someday. He’s going to take care of it, he’s going to fix this, until such time, see, everybody is confident Obama’s going to fix it, and everybody is confident this is all going to work, so in the meantime enjoy yourself and go out and take pictures and post them in a coffee shop.
CALLER: Well, forgive me if I’m not trusting him to find me a job.
RUSH: Yeah, but the liberals are. I don’t care whether they’re elite liberals in Boston or poor liberals in Fort Myers.
RUSH: Did you happen to see or hear any of the excerpts from that town meeting in Fort Myers?
CALLER: No, I didn’t.
RUSH: Oh, Henrietta Hughes, 61 years old, stands up and asks the president for a bathroom, a kitchen, and a car.
CALLER: Oh, is that the lady who was — oh, yes, I think I did hear a little bit about that.
RUSH: Yes. And another guy worked at McDonald’s for four-and-a-half years worried about getting a stroke and he wants a different job with more benefits.
CALLER: Yeah, part of the article mentioned that these people were looking for jobs that they enjoyed and not just jobs that paid the bills.
RUSH: Right. Because Obama’s there, we can take time. Unemployment compensation will be extended, the benefits will be extended, and it’s magical.
CALLER: It must be magical. I haven’t seen it yet.
RUSH: Well, this sets up, you know, it continues the setup of the basically two groups of people we have, the winners and the victims. These people in the Boston Globe are allowing themselves to be portrayed as victims, but if they’re patient, Obama will fix it. You, on the other hand, since you exude the traditional institutional morality and responsibility about this, you know, you are — if you wanted to, you could very easily become a victim, would become a beneficiary of nothing but Obama’s intent to help, which would get you immediate applause and praise and plaudits and so forth. What I wanted to talk to you about was your actual life and your career. You’re 23, and this is the first time you’ve been laid off.
RUSH: And you’re an expert in managing people, restaurant management.
RUSH: What kind of job opportunities are there for you in Marquette?
CALLER: Let me tell you, I’m still trying to find that out, because, you know, I’m losing track of the different places that I’ve applied, I’ve looked so many places, but the economy, as you know, in Michigan, hasn’t been doing so well for quite a long time.
RUSH: Yeah, I’d heard about that.
CALLER: So I haven’t been having much luck, not from lack of effort, though, in finding work right now.
RUSH: You like Michigan and you want to stay there?
CALLER: Actually, I’m here, I spent last year working for a nonprofit organization and moved back home for a little while until I can raise support to continue with the nonprofit organization.
RUSH: Oh, so you want to go back to the nonprofit?
CALLER: Yes. But that can’t happen right now.
RUSH: Uh, well, you want to go to work for a specific nonprofit?
CALLER: Yes. I spent the last year working in Dallas, Texas, with this organization, and I’d like to return there.
RUSH: You want to go back to Dallas. Is this organization shut down?
CALLER: No, it’s not.
RUSH: They just don’t have enough money to pay you?
CALLER: Because the organization is committed to financial integrity, they ask their staff to raise their own salary.
RUSH: The organization is committed to financial integrity and thus they ask their staff to raise their own salary. So you have to go out and fund-raise your salary in order to work there.
CALLER: Yes. It’s not exactly a good economic climate for that, but I’m doing my best.
RUSH: Well, depends. For some, it’s the ideal economic climate to go out and ask for fundraising for block grants and so forth. Now, look, Kathy, you must really like the work this nonprofit does.
CALLER: Well, I suppose it’s one way to make sure your staff is very committed.
RUSH: That they pay themselves?
RUSH: It is true, but do they seek donations from others as well?
RUSH: It’s the work the nonprofit does, or is it the principle that it is a nonprofit that attracts you?
CALLER: No, it’s the work that the nonprofit does. They work in Asia, south Asia.
RUSH: All right. How much would you have to raise to get your job back?
CALLER: I have to raise about $2,300 a month.
RUSH: And that would give you some health care benefits and the like?
RUSH: In addition to your salary?
RUSH: Twenty-three hundred a month. So basically $25,000 there a year?
RUSH: So $25,000 a year, and where did your salary come from prior? I don’t mean the actual individual, but where did you go to get it?
CALLER: Previously the last year that I spent I just was able to get money from friends and family, my local church, places like that.
RUSH: Okay, sounds to me like you’re doing the Lord’s work.
RUSH: Which is a good thing. What did you think about the private sector when you worked for the restaurant?
CALLER: The private sector? Well…
RUSH: Did you like it?
CALLER: I did. I mean I’ve worked there up until I went to work for this nonprofit. I did work in the private sector and had the opportunity to have a career there, actually. But I knew that in the end I wouldn’t find that very fulfilling. I’ve kind of been there, had the experience, knew what would be ahead for the next few years and just couldn’t find myself committing to that as a career.
RUSH: Interesting. Would you mind leaving us a way we can contact you?
RUSH: Okay. ‘Cause I gotta take a quick commercial break here. Stay on hold. And Bo Snerdley, the official screener of calls will be the next voice that you hear.
CALLER: All right, thank you, Rush.
RUSH: I’m fascinated by this, you have to fund-raise your own salary to prove you’re committed to the cause. That’s fascinating to me. I was prepared instinctively, ‘What the hell are they making you do?’ But then I stopped and thought about it. And it still could be a little bit of that.