Friday, 10 January 2014

The Departed: 46,000 Edition

First of all, from myself and The Political Road Map, I would like to greet you with a belated Happy New Year. Although...if you are unemployed like myself or severely underemployed, I can understand how 2014 might not seem like a happy year at all, let alone new.

Watching the news lately, there isn't very much new that appears to be happening on the job creation front in Canada and our prime enslaver Stephen Harper continues to feed us bullshit with a smile on, at least he is consistent with something right?

Today the numbers came out that in December 46,000 jobs were lost in Canada. This means that 46,000 people either lost their job or discovered that it was no longer in existence. January tends to be a slow month as everyone knows, retail suffers severely and most people exist in a kind of slumber or "meh" state.

What does not surprise me is the fact that most likely many seasonal positions and temporary contracts reached maturity, which can explain job losses toward the end of the month in December. What does surprise me however, is that in 2013, five out of the 12 months available resulted in job losses as opposed to job creation. What this means is that although it is normal to experience a month or two, where job losses exist, we have experienced significant enough data to show a job loss trend that is still consistent.  We being Stats Canada and the vast majority of unemployed within Canada.

I have been hearing from many people that the recession is over and that getting a job should be easier, but when I actually look at the current job prospects available, I find myself looking west to Alberta for a tough and satisfying job in the oil industry or Asia for a better chance of opportunity. Not to mention, the entire foundation of applying for a job has changed so drastically that it fits perfectly with the throw away consumer culture we currently live in. The internet is one thing, but with the advent of smart phones and tablets, I have been able to apply for jobs with literally the click of a button, thus sending my general resume on file to the potential employer and allowing me to continue on with ease.  Believe it or not, I spent most of 2013 working different jobs with this method. I literally clicked on the apply now button and heard back within a few days for potential interviews. This method allows for someone to find employment, but also gives a detailed look at the types of jobs currently available on the market, these jobs usually end up being part time and if full time is available, it still only pays minimum wage, which unfortunately does not equal a living wage when it comes to raising a family, paying bills and eating all at once.

With more effort, I am sure much better jobs will be available to me and I have completed my fair share of detailed resumes and cover letters and have been fortunate with the chance at receiving interviews, but overall, it appears that when our government is praising itself, it does so over such low end jobs, because numbers in the end do lie. The Conservatives witness X amount of jobs being created and then stand back and put their arms up and say: "Hey! Look over here, the numbers on our end show that many jobs were created, so you know...get to work!"

The way we do things within society will always change (hopefully for the better), but the fact that bothers me the most is how irresponsible our current government is when it comes to actually doing anything at all. If the Conservatives took the time to read the data very obviously standing right in front of them, they would see that their economic action plan is only benefiting very few within society, while the majority of us are stuck in what seems to be a never ending loop of minimum wage part time jobs.  In fact, with all of this hustle and bustle over pipelines and oil, much of the money being invested will most likely exit the Canadian market. Granted jobs will be created, but when you look at the amount of multinational corporations involved in the extraction process of the oil sands, the majority of their refinement and processing is done out of country. The main reason why this is simply goes back to the idea that the market is the best way to direct development and employment. If the market says you need to move production to China in order to continue a high level of profit, then you move production to China. Stephen Harper seems to believe that the only way to run this country is to simply let go and let the market guide us, which is neither the best way nor the right way of directing a country or it's people.

If you are reading this post and part time or minimum wage greatly explains your current employment, I do not want you to feel bad, but do understand that you are not alone and in many cases this is not your fault. How can we even think that the "Great Recession" is over, when our government is spending more time employing smoke and mirror tactics as opposed to programs that transpire into job creation. Did you know that the Conservatives plan on spending millions of dollars for an ad campaign telling Canadians how successful the economic action plan is? Why are these millions not being redirected into programs aimed at rejuvenating cities hit hard with loses in manufacturing or retraining programs for sectors other than resource extraction. Yes, we know we have a lot of resources in Canada, but for the sake of our future can Stephen Harper stop trying so hard to make us out to be a resource nation and just accidentally become one like past governments. Never has our country seen a prime minister who favors the status quo so much, while at the same time preaching that he is going to change the face of this country forever.

I am sorry to burst your bubble if you felt that Harper's economic action plan would create jobs, because all it does is simply put emphasis on projects the government should be doing by default and lauds it as heroic. For example: Building bridges, fixing pot holes and renovating infrastructure should not be considered stimulus, it should be considered the regular to-do list on the governments agenda, but I am just an unemployed university graduate, so obviously my opinion doesn't stand for much.

The real people who can actually get the government to change consist of the middle class and the top earners within our country. The only problem with them however, is that the first group is on the verge of losing its job in general and the second group is apparently afraid of socialism, because socialism explained by Harper is nothing more than a disease that can be caught and leads to protest. Heck, B.C apparently wouldn't be itself if protests did not occur, as quoted by Harper during the recent security breach at one of his events.

For now, all we can do is continue writing, continue speaking out regarding the problems within our system. Many people are going to put on a mad face and say your doing nothing but complaining, but the reality is that if noone says anything, then everyone will continue on as if nothing is wrong. We need to bring the important topic to the surface in order to not only recognize that it is a problem, but also begin work on actually finding a solution. The main issue I currently have with the regime running Ottawa right now, is that they conveniently find ways of making up their own numbers, their own research and their own realities as opposed to taking the time to review the true reality that many Canadians are facing.

This not only puts Canada's long term future at risk, but also greatly affects the political and economic direction that our country takes. These examples of ignorance and misdirection throw our economic and social compass out of whack and without proper consideration and discussion, threaten to not only worsen the economic and social condition of Canadians, but also employ a status quo of ignorance and fear and that frankly does nothing. 

To the 46,000 departed, I stand with you and hope the best for your job situation and to the rest of you...until next time!

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