Just a rant. Nothing spectacular.

I got up at about About an hour before I'm supposed to go to Iowa Workforce Development (a office of the Iowa Department of Labor) to sign up for the IT Scholars program. With any luck, I'll have A+ and Net+ certification in about 8 months.

Now this IT Scholars program is a training program for people who have been unemployed for at least 7 days. There were a lot of people there, most of them older than my 24 years. Not suprised at the turnout, considering we now have the highest unemployment in 4 years.

So anyway, I'm sitting at my computer about 30 minutes before I need to leave to orientation for the IT Scholars program. I pull up CNN.com, and see that a 20 year old went on Sacramento, California's second killing spree in a month after losing his girlfriend and his job. He apparently said he was going to "outdo Soltys," the Ukrainian immigrant that went on a killing spree in August. Now, obviously, this guy had some issues. I say had, because the guy took his own life after a big shootout with the police. However, there's a lot of people who have a problem with the wiring between their ear, losing employment is one of those things that tends to set people off. You lose your job and your hopes; you don't think you have anything left to lose, so you go off and start killing the people that do.

Last weeks unemployment numbers were the highest in 4 years. The stock market keeps sliding. Energy prices are still high. It's the oil companys that are flushing our economy down the toilet. Captains of Industry my ass. More like Ass Pirates. They've got us bent over an oil barrel, fucking us with a raw deal on refined petrolium.

I hear so much about immigrant labor. Why do they come here? Why aren't their own countries self-sufficient? Well, part of it is all greed. Our companies are more than happy to pay immigrant to come to this country and work for less then most local people are willing to work. It seems like a great deal to the immigrant worker, because they can earn many times the wages they can earn at home. Of course, a lot of our corporation have operations in their home countries. The problem is, our corporations like to get a "good deal" on labor in other countries as well. They take advantage of lax labor laws and lax enforment of labor laws, low standards of living, the lack of minimum wages, and the lack of other opportunities all to get the cheapest labor they can get away with.

Now, I'm all for a business making a profit. Honestly, we're all in it for the money anyway. Most of us are not working our lives away because we LIKE it. We work to earn money, we work for the possibility of getting ahead, and we work for the possibility of living a more comfortable life. However, I'm not sure that we (as a workforce) are terribly much better off at the turn of the 21st century then we were at the turn of the 20th century. Sure, we have a lot of protections and manditory benefits now, but is labor REALLY doing any better? Labor Union strikes are being broken more effectively lately. Manpower, a temporary agency, is the nations largest employer, with permatemps being used to skirt benefit and wage laws.

It takes money just to better yourself to get steady employment with decent pay. Of course, where there's opportunity for people to better themselves and get a better station in life, there are those ready to cash in on it. How many "business colleges" do you see advertised, that promise a new high paying career if you get training through THEIR accreddited program? How much does it cost? How many are for Microsoft or Cisco certification? Oh yea, those Microsoft exams are $100 per test, too. Knowledge is free. The certifications that everyone wants costs, though.

I'm all for businesses making money. That's what business is there to do. However, I don't think business should be allowed to reap exorbatant profits while screwing Joe And Jane Public.

Oh well, I'm ranting, and somewhat tired ranting at that.