"There's 3 million jobs every month in this country that go unfilled...And the trouble is, it's because they either can't find people to come to work sober, daily, drug-free and want to learn the necessary skills going forward to be able to do those jobs."
-- Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH)
The point that Representative Joyce was making here was that...well, hmm, okay, actually, I don't know the point he was making. It just seems like one of those gumfummery things that a lot of Republican officials like to make that sounds socially concerned, and outraged, but also sounds like they're criticizing the lower class, with a wink-wink about Black people, but offering utterly nothing substantive to support it.
Actually, that's not fair. After all, when you think about it, Mr. Joyce sounded very Shakespearean. You know, a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
To be honest, at first I thought when I read what Dave Joyce was saying about people unable to come to work sober, daily, or drug free, while lacking the necessary skills to do though jobs, I thought he was describing members of Congress.
To defend himself, the Congressman pointed at the Cleveland Plain-Dealer as having substantiated his statement. The problem is that while the newspaper had confirmed his number of of unfilled jobs, they said that their reporting had absolutely nothing to do with the attribution Mr. Joyce made in explaining it.
Mind you, there are reasons why so many jobs do go unfilled, though they have nothing to do with prospective employees being drunk or on drugs. Most notably, the biggest problem in the labor market "is not a skills shortage" at all, the New York Times editorial board wrote, but rather. "it is a persistently weak economy where businesses do not have sufficient demand to justify adding employees."
Gee, go figure.
The best part of all this, though, was when Mr. Joyce's staff was called to defend their boss and explain what he might have been trying to say. Something that Mr. Joyce himself was unable to do -- probably because he was unavailable, rather than not sober or on drugs, or ill-equipped.
"Rep. Joyce came to Washington to be a fact-based problem solver and during this 20-second clip of a 15-minute speech," Christyn Keyes said, "he was simply sharing the concerns of small-business owners with other local business leaders."
Ha! God love 'em. So, let's see if I have this straight. (And I do.) Dave Joyce "came to Washington to be a fact-based problem solver" -- and yet neither he nor his staff can provide any "facts" to support the charge that he made.
Which brings us back to that whole Shakespearean thing.
A tale told by an idiot. Full of sound and fury. Signifying nothing.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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