Stu Bykofsky’s Lousy Idea to Help Unemployed Workers

Throwing an anchor to a drowning man who needs a life vest.

We suppose we should be happy that Stu Bykofsky is concerned about the plight of America’s long-term unemployed instead of, you know, insulting them. Still, the Daily News‘ resident curmudgeon came up with a really lousy idea for helping those folks in a blog post this weekend:

After the 99 weeks of unemployment benefits expire, all benefits after that will come as a long-term, low-interest loan, like a student loan, that must  be paid back over time. Kind of like what my parents would have done.

This would provide support to the unemployed families — who will get to keep their homes, their cars and food on the table (a social good) — and provides for the taxpayer to be reimbursed (a fiscal good).

Is this an acceptable deal?

Heck no!


Stu's suggestion is akin to seeing a man drowning in the Schuylkill River and throwing him an anchor instead of a life vest. Why? Because if you're not earning money, adding debt to your financial situation only drags you further under the surface of the water. Eventually those workers might find a job again — only saddled, potentially, with tens of thousands of dollars in additional debt preventing the rebuilding of a new life. It's akin to those short-term "paycheck loan" places; they might provide a quick hedge against a bad week or a bad month, but they often end up making a poor person even more poor than they were before. Stu's "cure" is worse than the problem it would supposedly fix.

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  • Earl J

    Why can’t they just be indie bike messengers? It’s an honest and healthy living.

  • CJ

    Stu is dead-on. Joel Mathis is out-of-touch. There exists an abuse of unemployment, to ignore this is idiocy. Some ppl look hard, for sure, but stop.. knowing unemployment will ‘rescue’ them. Others refuse to take open positions, and keep holding out hope for their ”desired’ position. This should not be the concern of the taxpayers who fund unemployment. Unemployed should take ANYthing, AND still look for a job. Stu’s plan is a move to making ppl accountable..I know, a shocking idea to Joel Mathis and fellow Narrow-minded liberals.