The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

August 17, 2010

Good-paying jobs

— I am writing in response to comments made by several lawmakers and certain media regarding people receiving unemployment compensation not searching for employment but only wanting extensions.

I believe if our politicians and their researchers would do a little leg work and get away from their “magic” screens, they would realize the number of good-paying jobs lost far exceeds the number of good-paying jobs out there or being created. If they expect this economy to turn around, this should be priority No. 1: Good living wage jobs for people who lost their job through no fault of their own. I know, for I am one of those people.

After working 27 years at the same facility, they closed. Now, at 52 years of age, I am looking for a good-paying job. I was earning a good wage with decent benefits, but just trying to find something close to equaling that, or to start out lower with a chance for advancement, in this area, has been a futile effort.

For 27 years, I had a job that allowed me to live, not merely exist, and that’s all I’m looking for now.

Let’s face it, most politicians make three or four times (or more) the average yearly wage of middle-class workers. So instead of voting themselves a middle-of-the-night pay raise, while stripping the taxpayer of much-needed benefits and programs, perhaps they should take a percentage base pay cut and use that for deficit reduction or to pay for programs they claim are not paid for.

William E. Ashenfelder, New Columbia