December 1st, 2009
06:00 PM ET

More and more Americans seek day-labor jobs

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Remember the argument against cracking down on illegal immigration that went: "Illegal aliens come here to do the jobs Americans won't do?" Well, guess what? Americans are doing them... and in greater numbers than ever before.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/12/01/art.home.depot.jpg caption="Day laborers wait in front of a Home Depot in Los Angeles."]
USA Today reports that a growing number of American citizens are headed to street corners and parking lots of home improvement stores to find day-labor work - jobs usually done by illegal aliens.

A UCLA professor of urban planning says it's happening most often in areas where hot construction markets have collapsed - and there are lots of unemployed construction workers without stable work. He estimates that the proportion of American born day laborers has at least doubled in the last three years. Back in 2006, they made up seven percent of the day labor workforce.

Some of the places seeing an increase in U.S. citizens seeking day-labor jobs include Tucson, Arizona, Arlington, Virginia, and Los Angeles.

Experts say the day labor pool is becoming much more ethnically diverse. Whites, African-Americans and Mexican-Americans are all joining the ranks - competing for work painting, laying bricks or landscaping. And it's a trend that will only get worse once unemployment benefits run out and more people are laid off.

Nationally, the unemployment rate is 10.2 percent... and is expected to get worse before it improves. A recent report shows jobless rates increased in 29 states and the District of Columbia in October. Michigan leads the pack with over 15 percent unemployment, followed by Nevada, Rhode Island, California and South Carolina.

Here’s my question to you: What does it mean when a growing number of Americans are seeking day-labor jobs?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Karl writes:
Jack, Here in Silicon Valley there are a lot of laid-off geeks from IT and high-tech manufacturing out on the same corners. Manufacturing and support jobs have gone to countries with national health care that saves these companies 15 to 20 percent off the top and unless we wake up to that reality, the job migration isn’t over and certainly not reversing any time soon. Day laborer could become our largest work group.

Kelly writes:
It means we have successfully become a third world country! Hooray! The jobs will be re-imported to the good ol’ USA since we'll soon be willing to work for nothing!

Dick from Indiana writes:
Not very much. Let's do the math. The unemployment rate has doubled since 2006 and the number of Americans seeking day labor jobs has doubled. So, as a percent of unemployed, the situation hasn't changed very much if any at all. So I would say this is a very silly question and whoever thought it up should go join the day labor job seekers.

Dennis from Penndel, Pennsylvania writes:
Maybe finally the economy is doing what the government hasn't: stopping illegal immigration! If we Americans are taking the jobs that the illegals were taking then we can be better off! The only problem is most of those jobs are off the books so there is still a lack of tax revenue. At the very least, we have to be pleased that these people are trying to work.

Greg from Houston writes:
What are we supposed to do, Jack? I'm a 47-year-old well-educated man and have been unemployed since August of 2008. My unemployment runs out next month. My wife is still employed. We have a $1400 mortgage and kids in college and high school… We've cut everything there is to cut. I'm sitting here in front of the fireplace with the heat off. This is a national crisis and the politicians seem to be oblivious. If I have to dig ditches to care for my family I will, but at my age with my experience it is just not right for that to happen to me in a nation that is supposedly a leader in the world.

Filed under: Economy
soundoff (198 Responses)
  1. Jayne

    It means it's long overdue that we stop sending our manufacturing jobs to other countries. Our economy will never recover until we renegotiate our trade agreements and levy a steep tax on corporations that outsource our jobs. And it's not just manufacturing. Ever try to discuss your credit card bill with a person answering the customer service call in a foreign country?

    December 1, 2009 at 2:13 pm |
  2. john ....... marlton, nj

    It means if they had put in a full days labor way back when, they wouldn't be in the mess they are in now.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:15 pm |
  3. Jesse from Elizabeth, NJ

    It means that the country is in deep trouble. If the brainless people in Washington (the President, Congress and all those lobbyists) do not figure out a way to get Americans jobs, they might be facing the 21st century's Civil War.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  4. Russ in PA

    Is it because the growth of government has taken the growth out of private enterprise? It's nonsensical to believe that government can create jobs, other than for the purpose of enlarging it's own bureaucracies. Until the government ceases it's endless spending, and it's endless manipulation of what is left of a free market, we will only see more job loss and stagnation. Chicken Little was right...

    December 1, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  5. Susan Frost

    These are the only jobs available in many areas, and even they are not easy to get as many involve luxuries like yard work and housecleaning. Even the "better off" folks are limiting spending for such things. If we don't quit giving all the money to the banks and the military and find a way to reinvent the middle class, we are going down the tubes.

    Tuscaloosa AL

    December 1, 2009 at 2:22 pm |
  6. Cheryl Johns

    I thought these were the jobs that Americans would not take? So much for illegal immigrant rationalization.


    December 1, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  7. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    It so sad that these proud Americans are forced to survive..........just
    survive and it means it will drive wages down in thye long term.What
    is the ABSOLUTE OUTRAGE IS:Congress is taking their meger tax dollars and giving it to ALL the criminals for bailout.Like its slap them
    down twice over.
    How truly sad Jack

    December 1, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  8. Albert K., from Los Angeles

    It means that Reaganomics has failed and that lowering income and capital gains taxes on the rich does not spur job grouth after all; the rich just get richer. It means the idea of reducing government regulation of banks and Wall Street does not work either because they will take the money and run. It means it is time to stop the greedy and help the people.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  9. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    It means what the president said. More and more Americans are without health insurance everyday.

    If we don't drive a stake through the heart of the lobbyists now, they'll leach the remnants of life out of our economy and we'll reminisce about the good old days when there were day jobs to be had.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  10. Ed from California

    OK Jack, Who is hiring full time right now! Most of our good manufacturing jobs are overseas(gone for good). All that's left is part-time work or piece meal labor.
    Here in Ca Meg Whitman is touting that she has "created" thousands of jobs....EBay jobs! I guess selling what's left of your personal belonging after being laid off or loosing your house is considered a "job". Less than twenty-five years ago, we used to make here what we consume, now it's all Made in Communist China! And we have no work, go figure!! I wake up every morning and thank God that I'm retired. I would hate to be going through what America is going through now!

    December 1, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  11. cy

    It sounds like a growing number of Americans have not been prepared for the 21st century job market. Not everyone gets to go to college. Not everyone is smart. But everyone wants to eat. Take all the money we give to KBR and Halliburton and give it to individuals who can dig a moat along our Southern border. It will help the unemployed and perhaps mollify the xenophobes. cy, arlington, va

    December 1, 2009 at 2:41 pm |
  12. Peg from NY

    It means there are fewer and fewer full and/or part-time jobs available, so this is the best we can hope for. This recession is far from over. We need more full time employment for everyone.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:41 pm |
  13. Jackie in Dallas

    It means that too many of our white collar and even blue collar jobs have been offshored, and they are taking what they can get to support their families, Jack.

    Most people don't want a handout, they just need a hand. That's what unemployment insurance is - not charity paid for by our taxes, but a fund paid for by employers for those employees who DO work. But those funds are finite, and when you've got bills to pay, groceries to buy, and no more UI or savings, most people will do what they have to take care of themselves and their families.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  14. Sandra in Temecula, CA

    The economy isn't getting better and there aren't permanent jobs available. Working for a day making tax free dollars won't interfere with unemployment benefits and it will put some extra money in their pockets.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  15. Rich from the Poconos

    It means more Americans have finally woken up to putting money in their own pockets instead of shoveling it into that black hole called Washington DC. Illegal aliens figured this one out years ago.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  16. Rob of Brooklyn

    it means that sucking sound we heard from NAFTA has taken more American jobs than Clinton thought they would

    December 1, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  17. Jimmy from Houston, TX

    The stimulus plan isn't working and they don't really know the key to job creation is small business recovery, not spending us into oblivion.

    December 1, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  18. Joe CE

    There appears to be more opportunity to obtain this type of work than other except fast food. With the current number of unemploed, many will take anything.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  19. Rich McKinney, Texas

    It means that the government better start sending illegal aliens home because if they do not there might just be a lot of killing. People have to eat and if they can not find work they will find other ways to eat like stealing and burglary. Illegal aliens are taking jobs away from Americans that rightfully deserve them. The Obama administration is in for a very rude awakening if they do not produce the jobs that they promised and soon.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:01 pm |
  20. Jane (Minnesota)

    That Congress had better stop their partisan bickering, stop sucking up t the lobbyist & special interests and Wall Street and make helping the everyday main street Americans their priorty for a change. Pass Meaningful Healthcare reform that in my book should make healthcare a non-profit entity for starters, eliminate wasteful spending such as the 2 wars the previous Administration started without having an exit strategy.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  21. Sue - Los Angeles, CA

    Things are worse than they are telling us and unemployment is higher than the official numbers. Good case for denying amnesty to millions that we cannot afford to support, while our citizens are out of work.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  22. Conor in Chicago

    Maybe if the previous generation didn't force "globalization" down Americas throught we wouldn't be in this position and would actually have some barganing power with the Elites. But no. You people wanted to argue about prayer in school so now none of usare middle class anymore and there still isn't a god to speak of. Thanks guys.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:16 pm |
  23. Ken in Pinon Hills, California

    It means when America's businesses sent over twenty million of the jobs we used to do to other countries, we now have to do the jobs we wouldn't do. Get used to it, being a look a like third world country.
    As for those patriotic businesses who gave away their fellow American's jobs, none seem to care to call it treason.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  24. Randy from Salt Lake City

    NAFTA is a success! And very soon, all labor in the world will be slave wages and the filthy rich corporations won't have to move their operations out of the US. Everyone will be making $1 a day.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  25. Hubert Bertrand Oberlin La.

    It is not a good sign, JACK: But some people think they are too good to do hard labor. Look like it's going to get worst. Time to clean the white house and see them do hard labor

    December 1, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  26. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    When we get hungry enough then we'll do what it takes to feed our famlies. We might as well accept that the jobs are not going to come back from China or India unless the American people stop buying anything made there which is difficult to do since most everything is made outside of the USA.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  27. Steve - Chula Vista, CA

    Business outlook in California is terrible, I've had to lay off 50% of my employees and I'm hoping to not lose my business. Economy needs to turn around so I can start hiring again, but for that to happen we need business. California needs to quit using us as an ATM machine and the Feds need to realize we can't afford to fund all their over spending.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  28. JENNA

    What does it mean when a growing number of Americans are seeking day-labor jobs?

    Simply it means that we need more employment here.. And with the new Health Care Reform Act more jobs will be created.

    Roseville CA

    December 1, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  29. Mark, Bradenton,FL

    Well all the regular jobs have been outsourced and the Messiah Barack Hussein Obama has not created ONE job.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  30. Richard, in Kansas

    It means we still have to many illegal mexicans here. Hire thousands of new ICE agents to round up and deport the millions of illegal landscapers, construction workers, and service industry workers and unemployment would be ZERO percent. Of course that would be in the best interest of the American worker so there's no way our government would do it.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  31. Lou from North Carolina

    It is one of the few ways to keep them out of the buildings where computers are. It is also a way to keep them where people can still think straight. Digging in the ground clears a person's mind. It may be as close as they can get to being a gardner.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:41 pm |
  32. Rick Medina,OH


    One can only admire those who stand in the cold and rain for a single day's work. We Americans are a resilient throng, who have proven again and again that we will do whatever it takes to survive and build.

    Rick, Medina, Oh

    December 1, 2009 at 3:42 pm |
  33. Tina Tx

    Means you have to do anything to feed your family. America is in a sad state of sinking in debt and no one wants Obama to help us out. Wake up Americans you need help.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  34. John from Alabama

    Jack: It means that many people are about to run out of unemployment benefits or they are 6 months away from running out of benefits. It means another stimulus package that only goes for immediate employment of the unemployed. It means tax rebate to stimulate the economy's retail sales market. Give incentatives to taxpayers into becoming consumers, again.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:45 pm |
  35. Jim


    It means a growing number of Americans are finding that day-labor is the only kind of work they can get, due to the economy and lack of education. America is a great country to be rich in, but a pretty lousy place to be poor and under-educated.


    December 1, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  36. Lori - PA


    That the Stimulus package has failed miserably. And there's talk of another stimulus package? Sentate and Congress need to come up with a better solution.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:50 pm |
  37. dick from indiana

    Not very much. Let's do the math. The unemployment rate has doubled since 2006 and the number of Americans seeking day labor jobs has doubled. So as a percent of unemployed the situation hasn't changed very much if any at all. So I would say this is a very silly question and whoever thought it up should go join the day labor job seekers.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  38. Ryan - Galesburg, IL

    Well, someone has to do the bidding of the bankers and war profiteers after our wealth was handed over to them. But don't you worry; they assure us that the free market will fix everything.

    December 1, 2009 at 3:52 pm |
  39. Jack Carlson

    No news to us ! The "American won't do certain jobs" was another farce. The large Corps wanted "super cheap" labor Jack.
    Jack C

    December 1, 2009 at 4:01 pm |
  40. Jack Boyntion Beach FL


    For me it means a return to my youth. I remember standing with my lunch sandwich in a paper bag in a contractors yard in hopes of getting a days work. The work was tossing garbage into the back of a truck. I didn't get the job. That was 60 years ago. History is simply repeating itself .

    December 1, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  41. Bizz, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    The reason you're seeing more people seeking day labor jobs is there are no other jobs and their employment and savings ran out. Jack, my father used to tell me stories of the great depression. He said you'd be surprised of what jobs people would do to keep a roof over their head and food in their stomachs.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  42. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    You got to watch those people Jack. Just because they lost their jobs and can't find a McJob doesn't mean they shouldn't be paying their taxes. They should get "guess worker" cards...or swim to the country their jobs went to.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  43. David in Raleigh, NC

    If Obama's Socialist spending spree has it's way and keeps raising taxes on businesses and individuals, we'll all soon be day laborers trying to survive.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:05 pm |
  44. Emden (Deep in the Heart of Hurst Texas)


    D E P R E S S I O N !!!

    By the way, can you spare a dollar (adjusted for inflation of course)

    December 1, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  45. Melissa


    December 1, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  46. David of Alexandria VA

    This is a good sign amid miserable employment numbers. It says that people are getting resourceful. The economy is re-leveling itself to some new, hopefully transient, realities. Wirth any luck, focused investment, and the like, the economy is begining to heal itself. Day jobs will turn into full-time employment, some people will find new skills, and maybe illegal immigration will have found its nemesis - citizens who want to work.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  47. Irv Lilley Ephrata, Pa.

    Jack, It says that American businesses, especially big corporatons
    are reaping the results of not caring about their employees. They
    have done nothing but strive to make more profit. They have forgotten that a country that doesn't look out for the welfare of its
    workers and other citizens is going to suffer for their greed.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  48. Mode (Portland, OR)

    Its means the baby boomer business model has been a giant ponzi scheme. Its not just the executives on Wall Street who are to blame, its that entire generation which grew up in the affluence of the post war environment and never paid their dues; but talk like they did.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  49. Paulette from Dallas,PA

    It means that these people are not too proud to work at anything to feed their family and keep a roof over their head. Americans are returning to that old time saying,"A half of loaf of bread is better than none."

    December 1, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  50. June

    It means that the jobs the Obama stimulas is meant to 'create and save" is a myth. It is not working.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  51. Michael Alexandria, VA

    It means the economy is bad, undocumented workers are going home and the Republicans have broken the back of the Union movement. Day labor should be through a Union hall rather than a street corner.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  52. bob frompa

    its say's our gov is working on some thing that should have waited on .but what do expect from people that don't work for thepeople only special interest

    December 1, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  53. Antonio from Washington D.C.

    America is not living up to it's creed and America needs to grow up quickly!

    December 1, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  54. Tracie in Topeka Ks.

    It means Pres. Obama should concern himself more with helping America's economy than with aiding foreign nations -you know, like Afghanistan.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  55. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    It means the disconnect that exist between the economy of Wall Street and the real economy of Main Street has managed to hurt a lot more Main street than Wall Street!

    December 1, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  56. Ted, Aloha, OR

    I don't blame them for wanting to work days. I'm sure you can remember those long nights in a Reno Newsroom doing your rip 'n read off the teletypes. Now here you are with Wolf in the "bigtime" day job.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  57. Bill Glover Baltimore MD

    It means alot of otherwise average folks feel the desparation an illegal feels when they are out looking for day work to pay for a nights food and lodging...

    December 1, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  58. cy

    I've felt that many times the phrase, "jobs Americans won't do" really meant, "jobs Americans can't afford to take". Now that the rich have sucked so much money out of the system and wrecked the economy, more Americans must take whatever work is available. When more than half of Americans are willing to work for food, then I guess Wall Street and their prostitutes in Congress will declare the economy fixed and the corporate owned media will go back to ignoring the problems of average Americans. cy arlington, va

    December 1, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  59. Ann from Hampton, New Jersey

    It means the stimulus to get our economy back in gear has miserably failed. It means that the American people are not afraid to do anything to help support their families, even if it means standing on street corners and in parking lots. I pray we never see the day when they are selling apples in the same way.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  60. Ruilt

    It means that theres a serious lack of jobs in this country. We barely make anything these days, since about all factory work runs off to places like china, mexico, etc for cheap child labor, avoid having to maintain safe/sanitary work enviroments, you name it. Unfortunately I don't see this trend changing anytime soon.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  61. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, it means that welfare, unemployment, and food stamps are running low. It also means that the illegals are going to start going home because trained, qualified, legal citizens are being hired for the jobs that they held before the recession hit. Guess that is one way to cut down on the influx of illegals, huh? It also means that when you get hungry enough, you WILL find work, even if it is "below your social level".

    December 1, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  62. Rob in NC

    That no one is too proud to do whatever it takes to eat. Thanks to the stimulus package our wondeful government gave to all the rich and wealthy, the rest of us are doing what we have to to get by. Rob in NC

    December 1, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  63. Mr. D

    Jack, you drove by me this morning. All I wanted to do is cut your lawn and rake up your yard to earn a little something. Maybe next time, if I can get to the front of the hordes at the street corner, we could talk business.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  64. KarenB, central Florida

    If you can't find a job and need work, you take what you can get. There is no shame in "day-labor" ... the shame is in not trying to find work by whatever means you have as an option.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  65. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    It means the disconnect that exist between the economy of Wall Street and the real economy of Main Street has managed to hurt a lot more Main street than Wall Street!

    I hope Main Street will unite and seize on the opportunities to create green jobs by facing that climate change is real (it is not a socialist agenda nor an international plot) for them to save energy at home and not end up paying a lot more to repair damages from climate changes at home and abroad! For example, it is time for agriculture to change and accommodate more people locally, in cities as well as create jobs locally just as one example! It is time to see that even if one city is not suffering from climate change another city can or will suffer from climate change which by the way this rationale also applies to all nations including my own country! It is time to see how can we help other nations and offer goods and services to reduce the impact of climate changes!

    December 1, 2009 at 4:49 pm |
  66. Rick McDaniel / Lewisville, TX

    That means all that talk about "Americans won't do those jobs" was all a lie, to justify hiring illegals to do them.

    It was also a way for the government to justify legalizing all the illegals already in the country, so they wouldn't have to "alienate" the Mexican government, by deporting them.

    Remember, monies re-patriated to Mexico from the US, by illegal immigrants, is Mexico's 2nd largest industry.......following the illegal drug trade!

    Mexico has a vested interest in having their citizens enter the US, for both the largest and 2nd largest, industries they have.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  67. Jeff Crocket in New Britain, CT

    They are taking what's available! There are also many seniors who want to supplement their SSN.

    December 1, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  68. g ontario

    reagans dream of being more like mexico where top five percent run the goverment and the country get use to it

    December 1, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  69. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Times are getting tough, a lot of people need that extra money to make ends meet or just to have things they want.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  70. Jay in Texas

    Simply put, it means our capitalist system has failed and failed badly.
    Brownwood, Texas

    December 1, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  71. chaney, La.

    It means that our economy is in the tank, and people will do any thing they can to try to survive.....Its not real bad here in Louisiana,jobs can be found.....

    December 1, 2009 at 5:07 pm |
  72. Nelson, Somerdale, NJ

    Thanks for the idea Jack. I think I'll go stand outside the computer store tomorrow. Nothing else seems to be working.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  73. steve in virginia

    It means that Lou Dobbs knows more about the issues he covered and/or spoke about them more honestly than almost all of the Democrats, most of the media, and many Republicans.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  74. Mike

    It means that they will work when and where they can. I did it during my college days. I spent 10 years going to night school and took virtually any job that would allow me to attain my goal. I ended up with my BA, MBA, and JD. Even so there were times when I as an MBA was delivering newspapers because I could do it in the early morning. We must do what we must do. I came out on top so it can be done. It is known as survival and the fittest will survive.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  75. steve in virginia

    It means para Espanol, go home.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  76. Ed'sKate

    It means this country needs a lesson from the past. We need a WPA organization once more. The work done back in the 30's was so outstanding that many of the structures built at that time are still standing but are now in need of repair. Why not start restoring these buildings and infrastructures using the same technique?

    December 1, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  77. Tony from Southport

    The President promised "shovel ready" jobs for us. Ditch diggers all, that's Obama's America. No more Capitalism.... no more evil CEOs.... just plain working people doing the government's bidding. We asked for CHANGE and we got it!

    December 1, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  78. Chuck in Oxon Hill, Maryland

    It means that we are still headed in the wrong direction. There is more of an emphasis on saving banks (playing to corporate interests) and prolonging wars with no real end game strategy than focusuing on taking care of the populice that was galvanized this past year. Those very people are being robbed of their dignity and subjected to scrounging for work after long tenures in careers they worked very hard to maintain. Hopefully, one day we will really see some Change We Can Believe In.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  79. Sherri-Illinois

    That WE are desperate for JOBS JOBS JOBS! And President Obama is busy with healthcare reform! This economy is in the toilet and its overflowing with 17 MILLION Americans desperate to be employed again Jack! And if that means Day Labor then so be it! We aren't lazy, we want to work but the JOBS aren't there.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  80. Jerry B. Oklahoma City, OK

    Jack it shows me just how fickle the American people are. For years, they didn't want these jobs because the work was to hard and the pay to low. Now when they don't have their high paying job they have decided that day labor jobs aren't that bad.

    What is impressive though is that they are going out and getting the jobs from illegal aliens, because Americans can do a good job and I think most want to do a good job. And most impressive is that rather than go on welfare they are going to work, sometimes 2 jobs. At least they aren't relying on tax paying citizens to support them, like most welfare recepiants are.

    The jobs are out there. They might not be paying 70K a year, but anyone that tells me they can't find a job, frankly just isn't looking. In my area, Circle K is hiring for $11.43/hr + benefits, McDonalds and Burger King are high + benefits.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  81. Tom Mytoocents Ft Lauderdale Florida


    Remember the Decider made the statement "The jobs most Americans don't want" . Consider the source. The Immigration or non-immigration policy of George Bush is a substantial piece of the Bush Bottle Rocket Economy. It included Phony Banking a Corrupt Stock Market and Cheap Pre 1920'S Labor to fuel the failed economy for 2009. Our economy would have failed in 2001 anyway .It's been our destiny for allowing the collapse of the American industrial manufacturing jobs. Ray Charles could have seen this one comming. The former administration managed to mask the truth in claims of "911 attacks" ,"Weapons of Mass Destruction" and never forget "Mission Accomplished" The truth finally reared it's head just in time for John Mc Cains election strategy "Americas Economy is "Fundamentally Sound". Bush also remaked the unemployed were negligent for not having the skills and training for the new milleneum
    Meanwhile 22million Criminal Aleins drove the wages to a 1965 level
    Sadly America must pay for these strategies. Home Forclosures Cronyism Bailouts and Criminal Aliens who were allowed to work in a sub-level servitude work force believing they had earned their place in the States. Criminal Aleins were guilty of striving for a better life. The American people who condoned their presence are truly the Guilty........

    December 1, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  82. katiec Pekin, IL

    It means that many of us who always thought we were above doing certain jobs have now realizied that any job is acceptable where
    payment is involved.
    The unemployment rate is horrendous, but, it took eight long
    years for our country to get into this mess, and most certainly will not be resolved overnight. Even you, Jack, have to acknowledge this.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:20 pm |

    It means we are getting desperate. Its all a part of the end of the world. One day the whole poulation will be desperate and that will be our undoing.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  84. tj Tampa

    Like the hispanics I see working in my neighbors roof right now. I swear to God I'm watching six hispanices work on my neighboors roof right now and not one of them speak English. Please show the Americans where to find these so called day jobs, I think the directions and address and printed in Spanish.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  85. Christine from Ocean City, MD

    The middle class is shrinking. I hope Obama can reverse that trend.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  86. Linda in Arizona

    I hope it means the illegals will go home and stay there.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  87. Kevin, Chester Springs PA

    Nothing wrong with earning an honest day's pay for an honest day's work. So maybe it means building something with your hands is an American value making a comeback. Beats using your hands to pick other people's pockets like Wall Street bankers have done. And besides, It's a better scenario than people standing on lines looking for a handout.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  88. Natalia, Albuquerque, NM

    It means several things – first, Americans realize that any job is a job that brings in money to support themselves and their families. It means they will have to lower their standards and work any job during this economic recession. It also means that Americans are finally realizing that this country is in trouble and they cannot rely on the government to fix everything that is wrong in their lives. Sadly, until Bush messed up our economy and left us with a tremendous war deficit, our generation never knew the true hardships our parents and grandparents faced during the Great Depression. Lessons learned!

    December 1, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  89. Laura

    It means WE'RE DESPERATE for jobs. You cited the numbers, not too difficult to make the connection between that and this trend. Why is this even a question?

    December 1, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  90. Maria

    They finally have fallen to earth to realize that day labor is a legal way of making money, and does not harm their reputations, or make them less than the other citizens doing the same work.

    Talk about a reality show!


    December 1, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  91. southerncousin

    And this economy has been brought to you as a crisis by Rahm Emmanel and Hussein Obama in order to further their leftist agenda and to reward all the unions and other lefty organizations that stole the election. Obama, one and done.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  92. Dennis North Carolina

    no jobs are in the market place and we have to eat plus all the good jobs are over seas after our political leaders sold us out to big business.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  93. Victor in Saanich, B.C. Canada

    Yeah but Jack, is this not part of the government stats that delude the public as to how bad the employment picture really is ?? !!
    I mean for that day, they may be employed, and that info the politicos will spew !!!
    It is going to get worse Jack !!!!

    December 1, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  94. Terry

    It means that it is time for the US to manufacture something other than hamburgers, guns and debt.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:46 pm |
  95. Marion/Alabama

    Come on Jack,it means they need a job,and are willing to work for a living,unlike the politicians we have.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:49 pm |
  96. Jackie in Dallas

    It means that too many of our white collar and even blue collar jobs have been offshored, and they are taking what they can get to support their families, Jack.

    Most people don't want a handout, they just need a hand. That's what unemployment insurance is – not charity paid for by our taxes, but a fund paid for by employers for those employees who DO work. But those funds are finite, and when you've got bills to pay, groceries to buy, and no more UI or savings, most people will do what they have to take care of themselves and their families. The shame of it is that many of their jobs that ARE still here are being filled by resident aliens brought into this country and hired for cheaper than an American citizen.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:51 pm |
  97. Luci - Pekin, IL.

    It means that, the last Bush that was in office for eight years, got this Country in such bad shape that it won't recover for a long time. He also shipped a lot of the good jobs out of the Country, they will never come back.
    Those Rich bigwigs, (the owners) should never get tax breaks. I say ship them and Bush out with the jobs.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:51 pm |
  98. Kim Smith, Dodge City, Kansas

    It means our out-of-touch politicians have conspired to lower the living standard of the strongest economic country the world has seen. We are truly becoming a second class country, and the sad thing is that it's intentional.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  99. Lynn, Columbia, Mo.

    I think it means we need a new WPA.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  100. Meg from Troy, Ohio

    It means that there are no other other jobs, and millions of honest Americans want to feed and clothe their families, pay their mortgages and not depend on government handouts to support themselves. How can anything thinking American not realize that if our President and Congress don't find a way to create jobs for Americans who want to work that our country is doomed to become a second-class nation? I am tired of all the political histronics in Washington–get together ladies and gentlemen and let's get started rebuilding our country.

    December 1, 2009 at 5:57 pm |
  101. Thom Richer

    It means that the propaganda that illegal aliens are doing the work that American citizens will not do is just that...propaganda. Propaganda fostered by Corporate America and the Congress of the last 12 years. It means we have been used again to fill the pockets of the big boys without any concern for the masses.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    December 1, 2009 at 5:57 pm |
  102. Annie, Atlanta

    It means the center right policies of the past 30+ years (capitalism a/k/a corporate greed) were bound to ensure our third world status, eventually. You can only steal from the poor and give to the rich so long before there’s no one left to rob.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:02 pm |
  103. Gigi Oregon

    It means we are in a depression, but sush...don't wake the government up. They'd want a raise to figure out that complex of a problem and then they would screw it up. The sooner the people take matters into the own hands the sooner it will turn around.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:02 pm |
  104. Greg, Ontario

    It means that they are realizing this theory of entitlement is a load of crap. They are saying that maybe our grandparents had it right and that our parents really dropped the ball by razing us as a bunch of wimps with no work ethic and allowing the politically correct to take over the country. Someone needs to step up and this is good sign Jack and maybe , just maybe things can be turned around in time.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  105. Art

    It means there are fewer real jobs for Americans. You can't send manufacturing jobs overseas, replace customer service people with recorded messages, and turn over accounting and office functions to computers without losing the real jobs. Replacing them with $8.00/hr part time and/or temporary positions is not increasing employment. Not as we once knew it. The corporations win again. Now, give them some more tax breaks and listen to how well off we all are.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  106. Mari Fernandez, Utah

    Interesting, the work that many Americans refused to do, looks good now to those unemployed! Necessity is the great equalizer.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  107. CurtJ

    What percentage of the millions of jobs outsourced overseas are in the high tech, industrial industries? The billions of borrowed American Taxpayer dollars go to pay the CEO's and their Executives bonuses in their multi-national conglomerates owned by the Neo Cons.
    The greed of our bought off Republican, Democratic and Independent Legislators and Officials is nothing short of Treasonous. Our bought off government now admits it deliberately let Bin Laden and al-Qaeda get away in Afghanistan to help justify a war with a country with no ties to 9/11. They have made record profits off the backs of over 4500 dead American military and now we find out Bushs Neo Con Cronies now have leases on the Iraqi Oilfields. When are we going to say enough is enough and give these treasonous Conflict of Interest and Collusion challenged politicians and officials the jail cells they richly deserve?

    December 1, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  108. Doug in Houston

    What it means to me is that the $700 billion stimulus plan did little for the average guy on the street. Big government and Wall Street clearly win, while the average Joe gets the shaft!

    December 1, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  109. The Broker.

    Just competition! Most of the workforce never even think about working the ground. You go to any Manpower Office, and you will get the same response. These jobs are not regular jobs..

    December 1, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  110. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    It means we are possibly becoming less spoiled, less narcissistic, less undisciplined. Until the good times roll again that is.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  111. Scott Stodden

    It means that unemployement is at a 10% rate and people are desperate to make money to provide for there families and pay there bills Jack, beggers right now in this deep recession can't be choosers and people will do anything they can to make a dollar, literally!

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,Illinois)

    December 1, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  112. Ralph Spyer chicago Il

    IT time the illegal go home to Mexico.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  113. Matt

    I was so glad to hear your comment on John Mc Cain.
    You also should have thrown in Dick Chaney.
    My comment is that I thought Obama won the election and that he was not required to report to John McCain and Dick Chaney!

    December 1, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  114. Michael and Diane Phoenix AZ

    That they like to be able to eat also.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  115. Diane Dagenais Turbide


    ok...enough fun, afterall this is a serious day! But thanks for the lighter moments!
    Take care!

    December 1, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  116. Alexander Koberle

    This is just proof that in general people will not change their individual habits for the greater good even when they know it is the right thing to do. We all want those creature comforts that abundant energy affords us. As the middle class grows around the world so will our collective carbon foot print unless a new source of clean, reliable, cheap and abundant energy is introduced and encouraged. We can't fix the problem of climate change by addressing one issue at a time. What is needed is a new systemic approach. We need a new energy generation and delivery system and that will only come about when public opinion is strong enough to force the hands of politicians into passing some laws with real teeth in them. That takes courage and forward, long-term thinking, characteristics that politicians have rarely had throughout history. So although I am disappointed in these celebrities for their obvious hypocrisy and excess, I do think they need to continue delivering the message and educating the public. We need to do something now before it's really too late. The future is now!

    December 1, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  117. ckdarwin

    It means our country hasn't bounced back from a failing economy as we all hoped, and in fact, this proves that it's only going to get worse.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:27 pm |
  118. Dan J.

    It means the disparity of wealth and opportunities between working Americans and illegal immigrants is narrowing.

    Sebring, Ohio

    December 1, 2009 at 6:31 pm |
  119. Bruce - Delaware

    It means our elite politicians have successfully used NAFTA to export the entire middle class economy. Wars have been fought over less. And the Copenhagen crime about to be signed will put the icing on it.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:40 pm |
  120. Anthony

    Nothing. The world economy took a heat. i live in Europe and we have similar problems. Hard to do but the American people must stay calm, things will get better.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:41 pm |
  121. Terry from Illinois

    Hmmm , looks like 1920's of "haves and have-nots". Its really ashamed of what has happened to the modern American worker. Our jobs have been "outsourced" out of America while the American companies and executives reaps millions with extreme wages, bonuses and tax breaks and tax shelters. This is why Unions were formed yet today, Unions are powerless due to current laws and lack of support by Congress.
    Different opinions of who to blame, but lets start with our presidents and Congress of past years. Bush I (one) tried to push NAFTA through but was blocked by Democrats, Clinton signed NAFTA with 100% support from Republicans. During 1994 – 2006 Republicans control Congress and Bush II (two), they voted to give tax breaks to the rich and companies who "outsourced" jobs, 100% Republicans voted for NAFTA, refused to increase the Minimum Wage and their hatred for Unions still goes today.
    Outsourcing jobs from America loses jobs and medical coverage and tax dollars collected yet the GOP does not want "protectionism", or Universal Healthcare.
    America is the only industrialized country that does not have some form of country -run healthcare yet Republicans are blocking it.
    Day labor is the result of our current laws for worker rights , our current wage and medical benefits scales and the current company job market that has "outsourced " middle class or other good paying jobs.
    Now that the Democrats have taken control for the past year, its time to change NAFTA, change tax breaks for the rich and companies who "outsource", change laws to help American workers and change minimum wage...

    December 1, 2009 at 6:43 pm |
  122. mark sartoris

    Times are tough and people need to feed their families/pay their bills-no matter their ethnicity.
    Mark-Lakeland, Fl

    December 1, 2009 at 6:44 pm |
  123. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Jack what it means to me is that decent people need decent work. They want more to earn an honest wage then to resort to illegal things to make ends meet. Keep in mind that this is the early side of unemployment. We will have to wait and see what happens if things get worse. Right now people are civilly lining up for work. If things get worse we may just be in for world war 3 right here in our own country.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:49 pm |
  124. michael armstrong sr. TX.

    Yes Jack theres those jobs that America dont want but it seems that they want them now and it means if your illeagle stand at the back of the line or someones going to call ice.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:52 pm |
  125. Paul, Austin, Texas

    Jack there really isn't anything out there. No real jobs. I have been out of work since March last year. The only jobs that are out there are waiters for tips and 2 bucks an hour or the car wash again tips and thats all. Bagger jobs at the grocery is now a prime job.

    December 1, 2009 at 6:54 pm |
  126. Autumn

    It means too many corporation's, like GM, have outsourced too many decent paying and stable jobs (to the cheap labor market like Mexico) to satisfy the hunger of the shareholder.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:00 pm |
  127. Greg - Minneapolis

    Jack, it means that the old argument about jobs that "...Americans will not do..." is a false one. That they are showing up for work at day labor jobs should be embraced by employers tired of ICE raiding their job site and hauling away most of their workers. The fact is, too many Americans are looking for work (myself included.) And the politicians have done nothing to solve this very real problem, while they go about passing pork for their own reelection. We need a massive job shift in this country, one which sees ordinary citizens get jobs, and politicians LOSE THEIRS!!!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:03 pm |
  128. dennis, penndel,pa

    maybe, finally the economy is doing what the government hasn't!
    stopping illegal immigration! if we{americans} are taking the jobs that the illegals were taking then we can be better off! the only problem is most of those jobs are otb jobs.{off the books} so there is still a lack of tax revenue. At the very least we have to be pleased that these people are trying to work and be productive citizens.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:07 pm |
  129. Karl from SF, CA

    Jack, here in Silicon Valley there are a lot of laid-off geeks from IT and high-tech manufacturing out on the same corners. Manufacturing and support jobs have gone to countries with national health care that saves these companies 15 to 20 percent off the top and unless we wake up to that reality, the job migration isn’t over and certainly not reversing any time soon. Day laborer could become our largest work group.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:10 pm |
  130. Roland-St George,UT

    I think it means the days of a housekeeper or gardener thinking they can demand $30 an hour for a less-than-stellar job are rapidly coming to an end.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:10 pm |
  131. Hal

    A little excercise in humility is good to foster understanding. Unfortunately, it is the other end of the financial spectrum that could use the lesson most.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:12 pm |
  132. Independent Joe


    It means our government exported our jobs overseas, did nothing about our continuing illegal immigration problem, and they spent our tax dollars bailing out their contributors. We need new leaders that understand what the average american family needs and takes the appropriate measures to see that they are met.

    Joe M (Mn)

    December 1, 2009 at 7:12 pm |
  133. frankie

    "I coulda been a contender"

    December 1, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  134. Tom

    Jack, it means that more and more white, suburban males will get off their butts, get some exercise, and as a consequence will get healthier. More stuff will be built, and healthcare costs will be lower. Win/Win!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  135. Anna in Chicago

    This is because we send all of our manufacturing jobs to China where labor is cheep. Our government says that those jobs are not comming back but we can do something about this. We need to stop butying anything made in China. I did not buy anything made in China in the last year and saved a lot of money.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  136. Kelly

    It means we have successfully become a third world countrty! Hooray! the jobs will be re-imported to the good ol' USA since we'll soon be willing to work for nothing!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  137. james lapierre

    Maybe these unemployed citizens should be asked to join the armed forces in order to relieve the stress on the stress on forces already spread throughout central Asia and the Middle East.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:14 pm |
  138. Leo

    It means that people are realizing that nothing is beneath you when you have a family to feed.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:14 pm |
  139. Josh

    I think it shows the importance for America to move towards a new economy that is not based on manufacturing, but on innovation in technology, science, medicine, and energy.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:15 pm |
  140. Ken in NC

    Jack it’s called “Following The Money”.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:15 pm |
  141. Sue

    Jack, it means that we are in deeper trouble on Main St. than Wall St. and that the banks need to loosen up the credit regs so small businesses can hire the American workers that need a job.

    Alturas, CA

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  142. Darr/ Cleveland

    The collapse of the two family income. The deterioration of the middle and class and the beginning of a new class, the middle poor.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  143. michael armstrong sr. TX.

    It means poncho go home we no lovey you no moe .

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  144. Rich

    It means that your brand of capitalism failed. Luckily the rest of the world has a brand that works. Just regulate against greed and you can join the rest of us in the 21st century. Don't let your hubris be your ultimate undoing, america.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  145. Stephen Charchuk

    Sounds like something Corporate America would love, then they won't have to outsource to other countries anymore when they can get Americans to be grateful to work for next to nothing instead....

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  146. RuthieMae

    That's an easy one Jack. It simply means that americans are no longer full of themselves because reality has hit them smack in the butt. Just think what life would have been like if these same people would have realized that hard labor may not bring you celebrity status but making an honest dollar sure make you feel like a celebrity when the kids see you walk in the door with an honest bag of groceries.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  147. Ryan Scarola

    It means we've hit an all-time new low as a country and society, Jack.

    It's becoming clear that "Obama the Campaigner" (and former CNN/Opinion Research Poll winner in "What Presidential Candidate Would Be Best to Fix the Economy" in 2008) is not the same person who found his way into the White House. That first stimulus package was a complete joke. Did it save or create more than a dozen jobs? Seriously, did it?

    I've told my friends this many, many times...."I'm a Democrat, but I'm not an idiot" and I'm not supporting this President.

    Remember the speech he gave on the campaign trail about beeing hoodwinked and bamboozled? Well, here we are...with Americans standing on street corners looking for day labor! Kind of makes you wanna become an expat, sometimes!?

    December 1, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  148. Michael, Det Mi

    It means our government has forsaken us. When focus to save the rest of the world superseeds American needs it is time for change alright... Time to change all of our elected officials, time to change our foriegn policies and time for Americans to rethink how we spend our money. We must stop supporting those who forsake us for the better of few verses the many. We must stop purchasing items from companies who do not reinvest in us. We must get back to basics. Only we can save our future.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:17 pm |
  149. Greg in Houston

    What are we supposed to do Jack? I'm a 47 year old well educated man. I have 25 years of experience in HR of all things. I have been unemployed since August of 2008. Not even a single callback or interview. My unemployment runs out at the end of December unless Congress votes to expand the extensions into 2010. My other half is still employed. We have a $1400 per month mortgage and kids in college and high school. We've given up our cars and bought cash cars. We've cut everything there is to cut. I'm sitting here in front of the fireplace with the heat off. This is a national crisis and the politicians seem to be oblivious. If I have to dig ditches to care for my family I will, but at my age with my experience it is just not right for that to happen to me in a nation that is supposedly a leader in the world.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:17 pm |
  150. Cillian Cranston

    More Americans becoming day laborers means that this country has gotten of it's high horse and gotten back to the way that the founding fathers thought the people of this country should act working for each other and not giving jobs to communist china.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:17 pm |
  151. JMZ/chino

    good- its time we get rid of illegals and start doing the "jobs americans wont do" this is how you get america back jack...not Obamacare, not socialism, nor wasting billions on a earmarked stimulus plan..not borrowing money from communist countries, not amnesty for criminas...You get back by working hard, and taking care of your own!!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:17 pm |
  152. Juan

    Jack, Your story on day labors is a bit misleading. It gives the impression that undocumented workers are not needed. I don't think we are at the point where Americans will replace undocumented farmworkers. The work is too hard. I don't think that will ever happen.

    Juan in Sacramento

    December 1, 2009 at 7:18 pm |
  153. Jill Laurin-Maxwell

    More American's seeking day-labor jobs means oh..crap hold on to your seat! I left General Motors because I saw my future wasn't bright. I'm now a teacher who, guess what?, can't find a job because all my ex-GM coworkers are leaving the state and taking their kids with them. What was I thinking?! Perhaps I should start standing outside of Home Depots asking for day-work.

    Lansing, Michigan

    December 1, 2009 at 7:18 pm |
  154. Mike Oklahoma City

    It means that we are in a race to the bottom in this country. Our economy is based on BS, we live on credit and produce damn near nothing this is not a winning combination. Companies are not only not discouraged from relocating to other places with no safety or environmental standards it is pretty much a requirement. Nothing produced here means the garbage imported to be sold here has nobody to buy it and the people that used to make their living physically doing something are SOL. On the bright side, mortgaging our future by pumping tons of money into the banking system made the stock market look good again for awhile.....

    December 1, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  155. terbo

    There is nothing a starving man won't do to eat. But now, we work harder, only to eat less.

    We are seeing a frightening increase in those that are on the verge of complete financial and emotional collapse. It's not the President fault, nor has it ever been.

    It's Congress.

    The President is simply a tool, a marionettes puppet.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:20 pm |
  156. Andrew Nims

    It means that we need to have strong re-education program. It also means that we need to expedite repairing our crumbling infrastructure with this new pool of labor needing work. Maybe a new version of the WPA?

    December 1, 2009 at 7:20 pm |
  157. Richard, Kankakee, IL.

    That they have realized that joining the military under President Obama is just the same as Bush, you will be a target in a fire fight in another unending war!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:20 pm |
  158. Arnie Arnesen Concord NH

    If legal residents/citizens are now on line looking for day labor jobs it probably means that employee abuse, poor working conditions and below minimum wages will not be tolerated because citizens can turn to the state for protection. Suddenly our state and federal employment laws will be enforced. Pathetic.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:20 pm |
  159. Bill tennessee

    Before we get out of this mess The illegals will not have a shovel left
    to work with.
    The America people will be forced to do anything available to feed their family.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  160. Mike Hrabina

    I despise comparing the economy to the 1930's. How about the 1970's when unemployment, interest rates and inflation all exceeded 10%. Interest rates today are at historic lows and inflation has not raised its ugly head. Unemployment as surpassed 10% before, but wasn't it more like 25% in the 1930's . Let's provide fair comparisons. We are not in worse shape today as some may want to report.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  161. Amin

    jack, when more and more people are seeking day-labor jobs that plainly means that things are getting worse. More and more people are losing their jobs everyday in every industry except for a few others specifically Health Care. This jobless environment is definitely reminiscent to what the 1930's probably felt like. Now I am beginning to understand what the people during the Great Depression were feeling emotionally and psychologically.

    Gainesville, Florida

    December 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  162. terbo

    There is nothing a starving man won't do to eat. But now, we work harder, only to eat less.

    We are seeing a frightening increase in those that are on the verge of complete financial and emotional collapse. It's not the President's fault, nor has it ever been.

    It's Congress.

    The President is simply a tool, a marionette puppet.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  163. Matt, Washington DC

    It means we are becoming a welfare state and our standard of living will suffer for some time to come. There will also be more and more corruption and waste by government which will lead to higher taxes and inflation. Medicare and all the other entitlement programs already have waste and fraud that exceed some $500 billion a year...
    Expect that to increase as well.

    Get ready for $6 apples and $8 for a loaf of bread.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  164. Ronaldo

    Well What can we say Jack, I do not even know why do we have politicians in Washington. Before election they give us a lot of bull and they never be able to keep up with their promesses. Our employment rate is 10.2 percent, how about our imigration rates? Is somebody really care? I don't think so. With this economy everyone for themselve, survive or not, you on your own!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  165. Kris

    It means that a growing number of Americans are actually beginning to do jobs that might increase the quality of life of others. This isn't an unfortunate thing. It is a good thing. It isn't a problem when American's have to do work in order to get paid and feed their families. That is honorable work and everyone should be looking up to people willing to work hard and do good. The REAL problem is all of the lazy primadona's on Wal Street who got their jobs through Daddy and think that they deserve to make millions through legalized gambling. Honest work isn't something "Unfortunate" and I don't care if it's getting done by people born in America or elsewhere. Most American's have more in common with the immigrants doing those jobs then the elitists who have never gotten their hands dirty.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  166. Matthew from Orange,CA

    It means Mexico, amongst other foreign countries, better start bracing for a large influx of immigrants! The 'legal' kind. More specifically, their own citizens.

    Not only will there be no work for those who chose to weasel around our sovereign laws, but unfortunately the worst will come out of our more 'xenophobic' fellow Americans who will lash out at anyone the feel is stealing jobs from natural or naturalized citizens. It could become a very dangerous situation.

    Children are being beaten for having red hair these days. What do you think is going to happen when an 'undocumented worker' tries to cut off American fathers who are struggling to feed their kids while trolling in a Home Depot parking lot? The foreign worker is trying to do the same, but logic and compassion go out the window in depressed times.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  167. Pat S SINY

    Cause they're hypocrites. By the way, interesting list of liberals you cited. Business as usual.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  168. Richard

    Jack, it means the President views healthcare as more important than the unemployed, the war as more important than the unemployed. Jack, I ask you, why is it that the President has to continue on the same mantra on which he 'was elected, and can not change with economic realities?

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  169. mak

    Jack job is a job if it helps you put food on your table isn't that the american dream to work any job as hard as you can to be somebody.My father used to say if you avoid less paying job you won't succeed in life.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  170. Gregg

    Jack you could not be more wrong. The jobs you described are not jobs Americans do not want to do. They are jobs that are stolen by lower wage workers who pay ZERO income taxes. Construction jobs are sought by millions of LEGAL US citizens. In this economic crisis we need to take care of our own people first. The immigrant rights groups have fooled the media into thinking that illegals only work in low paying agriculture jobs. In reality they have lowered wages for the blue collar middle class. Everyone including CNN ignores this fact. Lets make life better for our own people first. In todays climate if you speak out against illegal immigration your racist. Illegal immigration is not a race issue to most Americans it is an economic issue.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  171. Dave, Corona California

    Jack, it means that these Americans need the work to provide for their families, and pay their mortgages. The authorities should try to help them by picking up and deporting the illeagles they have to compete with!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:22 pm |
  172. Alex

    Hi Jack,

    I think if the U.S. government cared more about their American people they would interfere more in making sure that company's hire American people and not illegal immigrants; also the U.S. government should put more effort into stopping people from coming into the U.S. illegally.

    Alex from Canada

    December 1, 2009 at 7:23 pm |
  173. Lynn

    Jack, we are most definitely in the midst of economic crisis. My husband is a commander in the US Army and just deployed last night. Even with all of his extra pay earned for the year he will be deployed, I am looking for a full time job. We live in Germany and have British cable. What most Americans don't understand is the economic crisis is not only in the states, it's worldwide. Sadly, the job prospects for Americans here on post is just as bleak as that of Americans living in the states. We usually can't find decent jobs because local nationals have them. Brits and Germans are having similar economic issues as Americans, regardless of the exchange rate and general worth of the euro or pound. It's everywhere, and people need to open their eyes and get smarter about how they spend their pennies.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:24 pm |
  174. John, Fort Collins, CO

    It means our country can no longer live on fumes. I've been in manufacturing my whole life, but we must now face the reality that our government over the years has allowed skilled and semi-skilled jobs to be exported to the lowest paying wage/benefit countries in the world. It is time to smell the coffee and take the first cash paying job we can find.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:24 pm |
  175. Michael Marianadin

    It means that immigrant workers, working for less, instead of helping the economy as a whole are only leading it to 3rd world wages. Americans should have been doing these jobs from the beginning, but thanks to corporate greed and their congressional facilitators, are now forced to reap the fruits of open border-free trade philosophy. While the former wont forgoe profits, the American worker will have to forgoe livable wages.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  176. Gregory Miami Beach, FL

    There is such a lack of work in my town that the want ads look more like a want ad and the day labor place is about to close up shop due to this fringe of depression that we're in. There is a lack of confidence and a sense of unsurety in the air about where this country is heading and how soon we'll get there. The sooner we can pull together as Americans rather than opposing political camps, we're likely to remain in this funk all the longer. The United States of America is looking more like The Out Of Work States of America.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  177. Richard, Kankakee, IL.

    That the U.S. Military is not a good idea as a last ditch effort for getting a job under a Democrat President, since Obama had bought into the Republicans reason for going to war or putting more people in harms way for the benefit of a few Military Industrial Complex Companies and the people who represent them in the U.S. Congress!!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  178. Chad from Los Angeles

    We have NAFTA and 30 years of outsourcing to blame!

    Sure, the rich got richer during this time, but the rest of us have had our standard of living worsen!

    December 1, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  179. kickindustcowboy Las Vegas, Nevada

    It means Congress has been bought by the Corporations and no longer works for the commonwealth of all its citizens. It also means we no longer live under a capitalist ecnomic system but one of dictatorial corporate kleptocracy. Have your checked your interest rates on your credit cards lately?

    December 1, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  180. DawnL,CA

    It means outsourcing jobs, NATFA & illegal immigrants finally did us in. Shame on the politicians & CEO's that allowed this to happen.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:27 pm |
  181. Joe Denver

    Jack after 20 months of looking for a full-time job I can tell you that the part-time and seasonal jobs are gone as well. I now have to resort to a day job a couple times a week as a secret shopper which sometimes pays so little it doesn't pay for my gas.

    The true story of what is happening in regards to unemployment in this country is a hugh coverup. The unemployed have pushed out the documented workers taking their poverty wages. The predominantly republican banks are not lending squat even if the SBA has a 100% gurarantee. (which they do call them Jack) There is so much stimulus money available for small and medium businesses that create jobs that is just sitting there. Imagine the jobs if the banks lend that money out but of course Obama then gets re-elected.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:27 pm |
  182. Brian

    It means we've become kinder and more humble to those who have been doing this hard work for year! As if ...........

    December 1, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  183. Rod

    What it means is the Americas standard of living is falling. Our economic system has sold off and continues to sell off good American jobs to other countries for cheaper labor, energy and goods. All for maximizing profit and benefiting the large corporations. This trend will continue to get worse and we will become a second or third class nation if not already there. Rod in New Mexico

    December 1, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  184. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    It's called values. Family values which aren't Republican, Democrat nor ethnic, despite what anyone else may think.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:31 pm |

    Jack, what it means is that communist Barak Hussein Obama and the rest of his communist lackeys have largely succeeded in their quest to destroy the United States of America from the inside. At no time in our history has one man done so much damage so quickly.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:32 pm |
  186. Tom

    It means that times are tough and jobs are scarce. But this is only a bump in the road for our free-market system. And let's see how long the american worker can last in a 12 hour a day labor-intensive job before opting for unemployment benefits. When things get better and the "good" jobs open up, we'll be back to where we left off.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:32 pm |
  187. Nicolas Lay

    Well I believe that all of this is pretty much stating the obvious, the back lash to "tickle-down" economics is that even though economy is on the "rebound" it will take a considerable amount of time before things start improving on the working class level.

    Alberta Canada

    December 1, 2009 at 7:34 pm |
  188. Topster

    It is a sign that Obama's "Change" is working. More people looking for work now than before he became President.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:36 pm |
  189. Oshaman in Texas

    This is a bunch of hooey! I work for OSHA and all I see at the construction sites in Texas are Hispanics. The workers who are dying in Texas are Hispanics, standing at the street corners, Hispanics and labor pickup locations, Hispanics. This news is all about twisting the truth and putting fear and hate in Americans concerning illegal immigration and nothing less. The fight for amnesty is about to start and the right can't wait to put their 2 cents of Xenophobia in.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  190. Dennis_linville

    I had a doctors appointment today so had to drive to Nashville.I am glad i went because i saw proof Obama's plan is starting to work. As I approached a stop light i saw a man That came to my shop a year or so ago to get some work done.He was holding a sign,lost job then car them home please help. he had earned almost 20 dollars today between he and his wife and all they had to do was stand out there in the weather,hold their signs and give up the last shread of dignity they had left. then it hit me, there is plenty of used cardboard laying around,old sticks and some nice soul may let you borrow a marker,your in business!
    of course once the rest of us loose all we have there will be no one to give a few bucks but for right now the obama plan seems to be working

    December 1, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  191. Sue

    It means when one has to work to survive they will. We don't "need" welfare handouts, we are capable of taking care of ourselves when we have to.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  192. JMZ/chino

    Jay in Texas- No system is perfect Jay. And capitalism will fail just like any other, however its selg recovering. The failures you see now are direct results of govt interference in that system and not letting that system work. the failures are due because Americans wanted all gain no risk, and no responsibility. Now you see what happens

    December 1, 2009 at 7:39 pm |
  193. Liz in California

    I think it's pathetic that so many Americans wouldn't take menial labor jobs, and now it's coming home to roost. I've had my share of "icky" jobs, but am pretty certain that I, as a 65-year-old white female who really wants to work, won't have much luck standing out in front of Home Depot.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:40 pm |
  194. annonymous_man

    It means while Wall Street seems to have recovered from the economic crisis it was responsible for creating on Main Street we still face economic challenges (the stimulus was necessary to help the economy stabilize and continue to grow even as consumer spending declined and job losses mounted) the economy usually depends on consumers spending for businesses to be profitable enough to continue hiring workers and keep workers for the long term. If government did not provide stimulus and consumers continued to not spend money the economy would stop growing, grow too slow, or stall altogether - that is the economy would be unable to recover without the spending (consumers spend even less during recessions, but it is recessionary periods when spending is even more essential than prosperous economic times) the fact that educated U.S. workers are starting to do work of illegal immigrants in this country (doing day labor jobs) is disturbing but not surprising to hear given the national 10.2% unemployment rate.

    What's more the entire stimulus has not even been spent yet - its supposed to be spent gradually over a 2-3 year period. To say the stimulus has failed, or we need to end the stimulus, or do another stimulus - its too early to make such decisions - let economic recovery projects continue (unemployment in all recessions has been a lagging indicator even when the economy recovers unemployment may remain high for some period of time) I would now like to see a jobs recovery for Main Street asap naturally - emphasis should clearly shift to promoting more job growth in the long term.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:40 pm |
  195. Jasmine, New York City

    Well, maybe this generation will learn to save instead of buying everything one thinks one needs, but really can't afford.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  196. Lynn

    These day laborers are working for cash and drawing unemployment. They are cheating the system and the ones that employ them are getting a bargin, not paying taxes and getting a steal. They also hire undocumented workers instead of hiring unemployed workers and getting them off the unemployment roles.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  197. Rick

    It means you just solved your illegal immigration problem.

    Rick in Toronto

    December 1, 2009 at 7:53 pm |
  198. GWTripp, Mch'sburg, PA

    This is a sign that our society, on a global basis, is in need of a tune up. We are stuck here on this one world together, like it or not, so we need to start thinking in terms of survival of the biosphere. We need to get our act together or we will not survive as a species. That means shredding old terms like nationalism. We are a human race. We need to consider those things that will ensure the survival of our species like habitat preservation and defining what kind of world we want for ourselves and our children. We cannot allow the rich the illusion that they can sequester themselves away in a cocoon purchased by their wealth to survive alone. We must, as a people, speak out for sanity and make decisions based upon merit and not wishes. Our governance needs to be by representatives who truly speak for the people, not the incorporated, for there lays slavery.

    December 1, 2009 at 7:54 pm |