I’ve had it. This weekend was another case of my hearing about someone openly bragging about how they work for a season and then collect unemployment during the off-season, you know, because they were “laid off”. This really just pisses me off. I mean, not the people so much, because this is the scam our government allows and millions of Americans are doing it, but the notion that our lawmakers are so wasteful with OUR money to not put in a simple mandate that if you’re seasonal, you don’t get frigging unemployment insurance off-season! This is a choice and a known work/vacation period, and not a surprise “layoff”, so why the heck is it treated as such?
I know, I know, the liberals will cite that this is just a portion of the federal budget and we spend more on wars and “tax breaks for the rich”, but what ever happened to right and wrong? It all adds up. Let’s add up the millions of Americans committing disability fraud (conveniently becoming disabled when their 99 weeks of unemployment checks run out), the millions of other unemployment scams, Obama phones (to his credit, not his program, but he got the publicity), and the rest of the free shit army handouts our country permits. So, here are two examples one person removed from me that I can share personally:
Scott’s Lawn Service Lady
My lawn looks like shit. I’ve taken care of it myself (not really) for years and we finally reached our breaking point where we need to get it aerated, treated and some other stuff. So, my wife call’s the Scott’s lawn service and she’s mulling over some different options and the lady says, “Well, you better decide today because by tomorrow we’re all laid off and you won’t be able to schedule it”. My wife, feeling shocked and sorry for her (completely unaware of what was about to come next), says, “Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. They just lay you off like that?”. The woman replied that this is routine every year, that she just works for the season, gets laid off an then get unemployment. Here’s the best part. She said, “You know, we NEED that break. This job is crazy and we pay into the system all summer, so we deserve some time off”. Aside from this being completely absurd (a soldier serving in Afghanistan needs some time off, not a woman taking customer orders over the phone), we’re paying for this nonsense in both our own payroll taxes, but it’s even part of the Trillion dollars+ in debt we run up each year (since the federal budget has not been balanced in over a decade).
So, let me get this straight. These employees know they’re going to only work 5 or 6 months a year or whatever it is, and rather than either getting a different seasonal job in the off-season or budgeting accordingly (based on what they actually earned), Uncle Sam subsidizes them sitting on their ass all winter? Now, the argument for the plight of the worker (see the shameful image above), is that they can’t pay their bills in the off-season. Well, ever hear of living within your means? You Didn’t Earn That!
Christmas Tree Guy
The other situation involves my friend’s family member who works at a Christmas Tree farm each winter. Same deal. He just sells Christmas trees for a few months, gets laid off, collects unemployment. This is just absurd. During spring, fall and summer, there are any number of other seasonal jobs (or new idea – go get a steady year-round job?!), but no, the taxpayers subsidize these seasonal workers as well.
What Does the Law Say About Unemployment for Seasonal Workers?
Well, that depends on your state because federal law leaves it to the states to decide how to manage this. Some states are apparently becoming more rigid and disallowing this scam (only after figuring out they’re broke and will be for the foreseeable future), but many states still allow it. New Jersey for example (headed by a governor who calls bullshit on stuff like this) is introducing a bill to identify sectors that typically only employ people for 9 months or less each year and then disallow unemployment for those workers. Overall throughout the US though only 15 states prohibit the practice. Typically, while teachers are ineligible, other employees on the same timescale are (busdrivers, crossing guards, janitors, etc.).
Personally, I think it’s utter nonsense. If you’re in a job that is seasonal, where you “come back”, you are not unemployed. You are just enduring part of the routine cycle that you have chosen as your profession.
Other Similar Stuff That Pisses Me Off:
- Pharma Sales Reps Think They Deserve Overtime
- High Tech Worker Shortage? Bullshit
- Working 60 Hours a Week is “Abuse”??
What Are Your Thoughts on Seasonal Unemployment?