On top of the most catastrophic economic downturn since the Great Depression, the continued impact of automation, and the shift of domestic production to lower-wage nations, here is a less dramatic yet no less decisive constraint that limits opportunities for many working-age Americans: The bus does not go where the paychecks are.
Nearly 40 million working-age people now live in parts of major American metropolitan areas that lack public transportation, according to an analysis by the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program. The consequences of this disconnection fall with particular severity on the poor. One in 10 low-income residents relies on some form of public transportation to get to work, according to the report.
In the nation’s 100 largest metropolitan areas, nearly half of all jobs lie more than 10 miles from the downtown core, according to a prior study by Elizabeth Kneebone, a Brookings researcher. For the typical resident, more than two-thirds of the jobs in the 100 largest metro areas are beyond range of a 90-minute commute using mass transit. A separate Brookings study released this week finds that the typical job in major metro areas is accessible to only 27 percent of all working age adults within an hour-and-a-half commute on public transportation.
It is reported that about 30% of the world’s population is unemployed. That’s worse than the Great Depression, but it’s now an international phenomenon. You have 30% of the world unemployed, a huge amount of work that needs to be done just rebuilding the society alone. The people who are unemployed want to do the work, but the system is such a catastrophic failure that it cannot bring together idle hands and work. This is all hailed as a great success, and it is a great success - for a very small sector of the population.
Noam Chomsky (via socialuprooting)
The people who are unemployed want to do the work
-This needs to be said a million more times.
Say goodbye to the 99ers. The budget deal Congress made in February is taking its toll on the long-term unemployed. By the end of June, nearly half a million out-of-work Americans will have lost their unemployment insurance benefits. According to official reckoning, some 5.1 million Americans have been unemployed for 27 weeks or longer. That number doesn’t include those who have dropped out of the labor force in despair of ever finding a job.