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Another Day, Another Gaffe
- Tom Corbett chalks up criticism over unemployment remarks to negative campaigning -- PennLive.com
Tom Corbett, the Republican candidate for PA Governor, responds to critical remarks made in response to his comments about the unemployed
- Corbett's gaffe illustrates disconnect with unemployed constituents--PennLive.com
A commentary on how Corbett's remarks show evidence of a disconnect between him and his constituents, and how these remakrks could be a game-changer for Dan Onorato's campaign.
Gaffes from Republican Candidates, especially the "Tea Party" wing, are nothing new. More often they're directed at a member of a right-wing outgroup; African-Americans, Homosexuals, Latinos, Muslims, etc.
So Pennsylvania's Republican Candidate's comments about the unemployed choosing to stay that way came as a bit of a surprise. For one, the economic crisis is likely the force that the driving much of the anger that Beck, Limbaugh, etc rely on. It will be interesting to hear how they spin this. Maybe a few will see how their being used as tools of the corps and their CEOs to try and create the "critical mass" they believe they need to set the stage for their corporate state.
What I mean is that thee goal of Conservatives is to make folks desperate enough to take any job, even on in the "McEconomy". A job where wages are low, benefits are few, opportunities for advancement are limited, organizing is almost impossible, and more than one may be needed. It will be harder for people to get angry and active if they're working 10-12 hours a day and their jobs are under constant threat. These jobs may have the added effect of crippling people's ability to search for the jobs that would have the wages and benefits they need or want.
Corbett's comments also had echoes to me of Ronald Reagan's mythical "Welfare Queen". This may be the idea as well, to set the underemployed against the unemployed. But much like Reagan's "Queen", this stereotype is a false one.
I should know, I've been on Unemployment Compensation since September of 2008. I'd like to find work that would pay me what I made nearly two years ago, maybe a bit more. I work hard at my jobs at the airport and at a FedEx Ground hub, and despite all of this, I'm still just barely getting by. But what do you expect when Unemployment only pays %40 of your old wages, with no benefits.
The one positive is that folks like Rick Smith are making some real noise about this, and unlike many Democrats, Corbett's opponent is fighting back a bit as well, with some help from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers,