Monday, March 08, 2010

What qualified this man to say this?

According to an article on Huffington Post yesterday, Tom Delay thinks that giving people unemployment benefits makes them lazy, no-accounts who just sit home and collect government money, not bothering to look for a job until just before their benefits run out.

Delay’s remarks came on one of the talking-heads Sunday shows on CNN, in defense of Senator Jim Bunning (Republican, of Kentucky) and his fillibuster blocking a vote on extended benefits for the jobless. Answering a question from the host of the show, Candy Crowley, in which she asked, “People are unemployed because they want to be?”, Delay said, “Well, it’s the truth, and people in the real world know it.”

Um. By what stretch of the imagination does Delay think he knows anything about the real world? Does he not know that most people who are unemployed do not qualify for benefits anyway. Those who were working part-time, in temporary jobs, or who are self-employed (that would include me) are not eligible. Additionally, you can’t just quit your job and receive jobless benefits; you have to be unemployed through no fault of your own.

Well, I guess you have to consider the source. Delay is, after all, under indictment on felony conspiracy charges involving campaign contributions, had to resign from his Senate seat due to the indictment, was tangled up with lobbyists for most of his political career, has promoted “birther” conspiracy beliefs which hold that President Barack Obama was not born in the United States and is thus not legally eligible to be president, and believes that evolution should not be taught in the nation’s public schools because doing so leads to events like the Columbine High School shootings in Colorado in 1999.

I don’t even know what else to say. Delay has given every appearance of being a crooked politician with some fairly out-there views (not necessarily on the evolution issue, as lots of people believe pretty much the same thing he does; but the “birthers” are just plain loony). But he feels qualified to go around saying that people are unemployed because they want to be, and he expects us to all just accept his word on that.

Sorry. I don’t think so.

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