"You may say that I am a dreamer/But I am not the only one" John Lennon: "Imagine"

"So come brothers and sisters/For the struggle carries on" Billy Bragg: "The Internationale"

Elizannie has a reading room at 'Clarice's Book Page' http://www.villiersroad.blogspot.com/

Monday, 16 April 2012

When will enough be enough?

This is an ordinary Monday morning story, about an ordinary chap in these austerity times. Bit boring really - but we must not ignore the wretchedness that is being caused by 'the system'.

Had a chilly, but good, Easter break. And it is always good to be welcomed home, but not when it is because because a good friend is in despair yet again because he desperately needs to use one's computer skills in the jobsearch market.

This friend of mine has been going through all sorts of problems due to the recession - like all too many others sadly. He lost his own business a couple of years ago, getting out just in time before the debts began to rise to the extent that he would have ended up owing money to lots of people. So he sold up everything he could, paid all his debts, moved back in with his parents [pensioners] and hunkered down for the duration - taking any jobs that he could.

Sadly not an unusual story in this day and age. Of course all luxuries had to go in his big economy drive - 'luxuries' which included a means of transport other than a cycle and an internet connection and computer. After all job centres and libraries provide internet facilities, don't they? And not many other people would need to use them, would they?

At first he managed to get a job, below his capabilities and earning power, but a job for which he was very grateful. And he worked hard and gained promotion. All too soon this firm got into money problems and went into liquidation so the hunt was on for another job. And this story has been repeated over and again, with the length of time working becoming less and the wages offered also getting less. Temporary and Contract work is becoming more common and all the government agencies who should be helping unemployed workers to find work relying more and more on 'have you looked in the paper/ do you know someone who can let you use their computer' as forms of advice.

[When I asked if he would be able to take some IT courses through the Job Centre, he told me that one has to be unemployed for six months to qualify. Although his unemployment record notches up to more than six months, fortunately he has managed to not 'achieve' this all in one go]

His latest employment has again gone into administration, owing him and all his colleagues four weeks money and refusing to release his P45 for another four weeks on the premise that the business may be taken over by a buyer. The Job Centre say he cannot claim anything for four weeks [presumably because he is living with his parents, his wife having left after the business failed]

So there we were this morning, updating his CV, perusing the job vacancies, drinking coffee, swearing and commiserating. Probably not an unusual sight in lots of houses in the UK.

An everyday story for today.

The picture above is of the Penguin edition of Tressell's The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists If you want to see the parallel's between 1908 when the book was written and today do read it, or go to:

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