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Musing on the American Work Ethic

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by NuthinFancy, Dec 5, 2010.

  1. NuthinFancy

    NuthinFancy Seattle Area Active Member

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    This morning I picked up a truckload of windfall wood cut in rounds from a buddy of mine.

    On the way home, I see a guy on the streetcorner, with his cardboard sign, "Will Work For Food". He's in his 20s, looks in decent shape.

    Now, I worked in Downtown Seattle for a couple of years, and I have seen plenty of beggars, and I know better than to give them cash and would normally just drive on by.

    But 'tis the season and all, and I've seen my share of tough times, so I pull over and offer to buy him breakfast and pay him $20 for an hour's worth of log splitting. I have a hydraulic splitter, so it's not back-breaking work like if you had to chop them with an axe.

    He just waves me off. "I can make more right here," he says. I shake my head and drive away.

    Well, after I split the logs myself, I went to pick something up at a nearby hardware store. Sure enough, lined up outside are half a dozen guys of hispanic descent, and whenever they see someone coming out with a load that looks like it would be for a home improvement project, they run up to them and ask for work to do. Not a cardboard sign in sight.

    There's a moral in there somewhere. Sorry for the rant.
     
  2. MA Duce

    MA Duce Central Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Too true. I once stopped to offer a job bedding pipe on a construction project to a cardboard sign guy. I told him he would be shoveling gravel in a waist deep ditch to make a bed for drain pipe. I offered him the standard laborer's wage of 13 bucks an hour. The job was to last about two months. He said no.
     
  3. parsons_12b

    parsons_12b LaPine Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Id take both those jobs right now if I lived in your towns
     
  4. Dell_dude

    Dell_dude Vancouver, WA Member

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    The "will work for food" signs are, IMO, pretty obviously, bull****.

    I would also suspect that a large percentage of the signs that advertise "veteran" status are bull**** as well.

    The people sporting those signs are leaches on society, plain and simple.

    IMO Anyone giving them anything, be it food, money or whatever are idiots.

    With the number of social programs out there (like it or not), there is no good reason for anyone to be standing on an offramp, although as many of you have probably noted, for some, it's a job/lifestyle.
     
  5. lowly monk

    lowly monk Beaverton, Oregon. Just a guy. Bronze Supporter

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    Here in beaverton. The police are trying to keep the "sign people" off the ramps. They have had several rear enders. The person who stops is actually at fault. (Not obaying a traffic device). I wonder how can anyone stand and beg for money when they can have the dignity of earning it.
    Do they pay taxes on the income??
    Also i've learned to check my judgement, Some are ligit.
    I am writing this from work on break.
    Be well and honest.
     
  6. Natty Bumpo

    Natty Bumpo Clackamas County Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I have to say I have done harder and more demeaning work for a lot less so I understand your point. And it does seem that people who grew up in other countries haven't lost sight of the value of simple, honest work as have many in our society. A person who refuses work simply isn't that hungry and is not that destitute. I know because I've been there.

    It also seems to me that probably the best way to contribute to the welfare of the homeless or the down-and-out is to support local organizations that provide food, shelter, etc. rather than indulging the panhandlers with cash.
     
  7. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    I do NOT give money to people holding signs.
    I will NOT freely give out to people on street corners.

    I will NOT give $.05 to some guy in front of a store asking for a nickel.

    I will in turn offer to buy somebody some food if that's what they want, tell them of a job opportunity.

    Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach him to fish and he will never go hungry. I know too many people who are losing everything right now who want to work and will do whatever they can to make ends meet. I will do what I can to help them out. I've done it in the past and I'll continue to do it. If it's in my ability.

    Sickens me to see beggars. I could stand on a corner and ask for handouts while I get my three free meals a day from the mission. What does that leave me with? Money for other things. ... just sickens me.

    Jesus did ask us to give to the less fortunate, but those less fortunate are not the people who don't want to help themselves.
     
  8. BigCat

    BigCat Portland Member

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    Never give to healthy able bodied people. Handicapped people are a different story.
     
  9. Redcap

    Redcap Lewis County, WA Well-Known Member

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    No, there really isn't.

    Any larger city is full of hustlers and lazy b.astards. (really? 'bubblegumming' something as tame as 'b.astards'?)

    You want to see a real American work ethic? Go to a rural area, which is most of the state.
     
  10. BigCat

    BigCat Portland Member

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    Mandatory American work ethic include four hours of TV a day, at least 3-5 meals a week from a fast food joint, and only walking as far as it takes to get to your car.
     
  11. marty8587

    marty8587 NE Portland Active Member

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    They must make more than the guy with the Jiffy Lube sign!
     
  12. ejmpnu92

    ejmpnu92 Hillsboro, Or Active Member

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    During the Census operations, not so long ago, I worked out of the office in San Jose, CA. Long story short, I lost all compassion. There are more services out there for "homeless" people, that I as a home owner(at the time) would never even think about utilizing. Plus, also found out that a large number of them, take the money given them and bank it. So, they don't have any bills(unless drug/alc) and live off the charity of others, and bank it. Ok, I know not all homeless are like this, but a much larger share of them are. Aside from the druggies and alkies.
     
  13. Unka-Boo

    Unka-Boo Milwaukie Active Member

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    Handicapped people aren't capable of working? ( Ok, ok, within reason and it all depends on their abilities )

    My "favorite" corner beggars are the "Handicapped" ( usually in a wheelchair or scooter ) who holds the sign and their helper who actually collects the handouts.....pathetic.

    Want a fun game? Start looking at the shoes that the corner people wear....you'll be surprised how many have new shoes...

    Other thing that irks me.....you're begging for food? money? You're destitute?

    Then why the F*** are you smoking and drinking a Mt. Dew.
     
  14. Mookie

    Mookie Eastern Washington Active Member

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    Never been fishing have you? :D

    I always tell the "will work for food" people about a job I know is available. It's amazing how many have back problems that allow them to stand around for hours and carry a large back pack but they can't sand a door.
     
  15. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    Many years ago when I first went into business for myself I was given many suggestions by friends who were self employed but one seemed to be universal - never offer homeless or other seemingly needy people work - even if it is just cleaning up around your jobsite. You may find them screaming, on their back and eventually being hauled off to the ER. This happened to a friend of mine. Cost him plenty. Always use the day labor businesses and pay the fees.
     
  16. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    Or have dogs, cats and are better dressed than me?
     
  17. FarmerTed1971

    FarmerTed1971 Portland, Oregon, United States Well-Known Member

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    ^^^ This! They always seem to have a dog and a smoke.

    IMHO white guys are lazy ******'s. Everyone seems to be looking for a handout nowadays. It's disgusting.
     
  18. Celtic Armory

    Celtic Armory Port Orchard, WA Member

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    I take offense to that. It's not just white men, Americans in general have become that way because real jobs have been exported to countries where the labor is cheap and morals and family values are no longer taught in school. White men just need to pull their heads out of their butts and make work for themselves. The whole country has been taken over by Marxist socialism and we've lost our forefathers ways.

    As a personal note, I'm far from lazy. I do my best to get my customers work done and turned around fast; I just wish I had more customers but things are getting better. I've been on unemployment only 3 times in my life and never have I let it last more than a few months, even after losing my aviation maintenance career due to 9/11. I've never been homeless, even though I've come close a few times.

    Parents just need to teach their children better. Raise them with sound morals and teach them the evils of Communism and usury.
     
  19. FarmerTed1971

    FarmerTed1971 Portland, Oregon, United States Well-Known Member

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    You shouldn't take offense, it's a huge generalization on my part... and I'm a white guy. I'm also a small business owner that employs 12. Just my educated observation and humble opinion.

    And you are absolutely correct, parents DO need to teach their children better. Unfortunately these days there are a LOT of single parent families and kids don't get the quality time they need.
     
  20. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy between springfield and shelbyville Well-Known Member

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    But social programs wont buy you malt liquor, cigarettes, or meth.....


    yet.