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Credit Score the New “Mark of the Beast” for Unemployed Americans called 99ers?

Credit Score the New “Mark of the Beast” for Unemployed Americans called 99ers?
Credit Score the New “Mark of the Beast” for Unemployed Americans called 99ers?
Donalee King

As if it is not challenging enough to be unemployed, it seems a credit score ruined by the recession may be the new “Mark of the Beast” for America's long term unemployed known as the 99ers..

This is a 99er’s tale of futile job search and how bad circumstances are stacked against the long term unemployed. Basically no Tier 5 equals no hope for millions of Unemployed Americans.

Being a 99er has many drawbacks. Poverty, eviction, homelessness and ultimately starvation or death by exposure. That is, of course, unless depression kills you first.

As a 99er, I have been unemployed about 3 years (except for what little I make blogging). To be exact, 158 weeks of scouring the want ads and internet for any job posted that I could possibly do - at any wage (including minimum).

Then some republican jerk in office (actually most every republican jerk in office) says things like this:

"The 99ers are a group of people out there who have already received 99 weeks of unemployment. You can’t keep people on unemployment. It’s kind of like the state of California right now, where you just keep giving more and more money and it becomes like drugs to a drug addict. So look, I’m all for people that lost their jobs, make sure that there are unemployment benefits out there, but 99 weeks is probably too long. We just can’t keep supporting people that don’t want to work."

[Republican Representative Devin Nunes from California during an interview on Fox Business’ Varney and Co.]

Well Mr. Devin Nunes, listen up:

I want to work! I need to work! In fact I have never worked so hard in all of my life as I have trying to find a job. ANY JOB!

It was not my fault that Congress deregulated the Wall Street banks and allowed them to crash our economy. It certainly was not my fault that the company I worked for wrote illegal loans to unsuspecting Americans that contributed to the foreclosure fiasco, which begat a substantial cut in tax revenues for all 50 states, which begat states cutting back on teachers, preschools, food programs, Medi-Cal benefits and police and firefighters.

It was not my fault that California and many other states pillaged from their UI funds in better times and bankrupted that system. I did not create the collapse of the Sub-Prime Mortgage industry which caused me to lose a long held job as an Operations Specialist, which lead to 8 months of fruitless job search back in 2007.

It was not my fault that 1 day before I was to start a new job (landed after months of desperate searching), I was run over by an uninsured drunk truck driver while in a crosswalk in front of my home, which begat 8 months of rehab and left me over $60K in debt and cost me that job - as the new employer could not wait.

It is hardly my fault that once I was well enough to work again that my father took terminally ill and required me to be his hospice nurse for the last several painful months of his life, which begat his estate being bankrupted by his medical expenses.

It is certainly not my fault that the Congress cares so little about what their tax breaks for Corporate outsourcing has done to the unemployment rate and the resulting economic nightmare has done to the American people - let alone their credit rating. Nor is it my fault that a bill to end the Credit report abuse by employers for the unemployed has sat dead in committee for nearly 2 years now, which begat millions of Americans being discriminated against not only due to their age but now their credit rating.

I have spent untold hours looking for work, sending resumes, attending worthless job fairs, networking with friends and strangers just to get the chance for an interview, and of the few interviews I was blessed to get - I am turned down for at least a dozen jobs (mostly fast food and retail) because I am not bilingual. This is America but to get a minimum wage job at McDonalds or Sears I have to speak Spanish. I get it, I do - one needs to be able to communicate with the customers and I do live in Southern California. But it would have been nice if I was told of that requirement during the application process. Right?

However, by far the most absurd of all the hurdles I have met to finding gainful employment must be the credit report issue. In the past year I have jumped through every hoop the potential employer had set before me, passed with flying colors - as I happen to be an excellent prospective employee. I am prompt, articulate, intelligent, computer literate, driven, honest, self motivated, energetic and always have a great attitude. I am willing to learn, start at the bottom, do whatever is required and possess an excellent work ethic. But the economy, 158 weeks of unemployment and only 99 weeks of UI benefits has taken quite a toll on my credit rating. If you cannot afford to eat you certainly cannot keep your credit good.

In the past year alone I have had a half dozen employers take me as far in the process as any applicant can go - then I was disqualified because my FICO credit score was under 666. Sound familiar? 666 is referred to in the Bible as the “Mark of the Beast” as an impediment to being allowed to buy or sell, only now that same number 666 is preventing me from getting work.

This is a very strange threshold for FICO scores. Yes a FICO 666 can keep you from buying a car or a home - but should it keep you from being able to get a job so you can survive? And why isn’t it 665 or 667? The six employers and one volunteer position who quoted me that same number are in different industries. One was a temp agency, another was a non-cash handling retail position. The most recent was a part time clean up position for a burger chain. What does / should my credit rating have to do with whether or not I can sweep a floor or mop up a table?

Before the recession (which was man made by Congress and Wall Street), I was making over $40K a year working as a Legal compliance officer for a Nation wide mortgage company. I have not looked in that field exclusively since 2008. Am I to be discriminated against by possible employers not only for my age but also because of what the recession and unemployment have done to my credit rating? This is what millions of Americans are facing today. WE WANT JOBS - but even the few jobs available out there are not given to us (the longest term unemployed) for the flimsiest of excuses.

What exactly are we supposed to do? Lay down and die? This is unbelievable and inexcusable and I blame Congress for not passing Tier 5. The blood of the 99ers who do not make it out of this alive is on your hands Washington. This 99er thing is YOUR FAULT WASHINGTON and you need to clean up your mess by passing Tier 5 now and creating jobs for millions of Americans suffering beyond your limited understanding.

After all...YOU lost them for us!

Comments

  • Artie 4 years ago

    There is no one who could have stated the case better than you... I just have to agree!
    God Bless you, Donalee!!!
    My thoughts and prayers are with each and every one of the 99ers, and those who are about to join us!
    If ever I have seen evil incarnate, it rests in the hands of those in Washington who are literally stepping on their fellow Americans on the way to saving the rich in this land the inconvenience of a small increase in taxes. Trickle down theories have been in place for YEARS, and that practice has not added jobs. IT'S ALL ABOUT GREED!!!!
    I am sickened and ashamed of what we call leadership. I think now, that there might be one week to get something done... but I'm not going to hold my breath.
    Lame ducks= our cooked goose!

  • Profile picture of Donalee King
    Donalee King 4 years ago

    Thank you Artie - I sooooo agree that we are screwed and by Reid, Stabenow and Schumer too! They only care now about the rich!

    S3706 was All a dog and pony show (or phony show to be exact) Talk about "evil incarnate" Thy name is CONGRESS.......

  • RBINTN 4 years ago

    Ms. King, thanks for bringing this up. I am very concerned about this, and would remind everyone that many times employment websites are exploited for the purpose of obtaining social security numbers. I have many 99er friends and relatives who brought this to my attention, and in checking a couple of them out, I understood exactly what they meant.

    It is just now occurring to our fearless elected leaders what is set to happen in the housing market, as millions more people are shut out of the market due to credit dings associated with the downturn, foreclosures, or job loss.

    It's also a shame that cosponsors of meaningful legislation, like S.3706, would rather worry about tax cuts than legislation that would get our long-term unemployed back to work-- and at least receiving some help in the meantime. I would have expected our legislators to at least include S.3706 proposals in a comprehensive economic package in exchange for simply dropping their objections over tax cuts for all!

    Even our more enlightened leaders like Senator Stabenow and Sherrod Brown seem to have missed the point-- if we get our longest term unemployed back to work with hiring incentives like those in their bill, perhaps the credit situation can be rectified over time. But we must have a starting point.

  • Miggie 4 years ago

    God bless you for all you have been through! I pray today for you, that you land the very job that you WANT. Not the one you NEED. We have been forgotten, my friend. I lost my car to repo in June, and I was called for a second interview last Friday. they told me they would call me today and make an offer for the position. I waited all day. No one called. I wanted to cry, to give up. I (for the first time in my life) applied for food stamps on 11-08-10, was approved, and waited all day today for the food stamp card to come in the mail. I re-wrote the grocery list 4 times, cut coupons, the whole nine yards. No food stamps in the mail today. Wanting to give up....but a thought, a hope that MAYBE tomorrow everything will fall into place. Maybe I'll get that job, maybe the food stamps will come and we will eat. God bless you friend, I cannot help you financially, but I offered a prayer for you today.

  • Profile picture of Donalee King
    Donalee King 4 years ago

    Your prayers are like winning the lotto for me (I strongly believe in the power of prayer)

    I feel your pain but I am so proud that you are hanging in there and YES tomorrow is another day! Let this day be Gone with the Wind! And tomorrow the food stamps card will arrive and that new employer of yours will call!!!

    God bless you for your courage and keeping positive. So sorry about the repo.

  • chicagogal 4 years ago

    Donalee, let me add my praise for your skill in articulating what so many feel! The one thing missing was about the many unemployed that we have already lost to suicide - or who we will lose soon due to the absolute hopelessness we are being forced to endure.

    Last month I lost a chance at an entry level job. They were very interested - they wanted previous and expected salary with the resume, which I never enclose, but contacted me a few weeks later to get the information. I didn't want to give it to them because I had over 6 years experience and made over $50,000 at my last job - and knew they were probably going to pay in the high $20's to low $30's. But I did and couched it in a way that said I was open to whatever their starting salary was, but they still slammed the door because they firmly believed that I would never accept a $20,000 pay cut. Let's nevermind the fact that I "earn" something like $21,000 on UI so their salary would have been a huge increase!

  • Profile picture of Donalee King
    Donalee King 4 years ago

    Unbelievable! This IS an important issue - you are correct. I am so sorry this happened to you and is happening everywhere. I have to believe that there is a better job for you very soon!

  • Profile picture of Jacqueline Homan
    Jacqueline Homan 4 years ago

    This is EXACTLY what those of us from poverty, who never even got a chance to make to the middle class, have had to suffer for the last 20-30 years. But nobody else ever cared about our problems...until now.

    Poverty-profiling by credit report check is not new. I have been without ANY income other than food stamps since 2005. I am 43 and I can count the number of times on one hand that I've had access to health and dental care. I have an education, a clean record, no kids (i.e. I'm not poor because of "poor choices").

    I've been poor since I was 24 in 1991 after an uninsured driver broad-sided me, leaving me with permanent injuries to my back and knees. I went into debt for the college degree that was supposed to be my ticket out of poverty, but when I graduated at age 34 in May 2001, I found that I had no chance for getting a job that paid a living wage because employers only wanted people my age who already had experience in the field plus more than just a Bachelors degree, or they preferred the 20-somethings.

    Because of being poor and having no access to dental care after the accident, I had to face everybody (including potential employers) with visibly decayed/missing teeth. I was 40 years old before I *finally* was able to get an upper denture so at least I could look normal and not be judged and looked down on. Trying to get a job when you're a woman having to walk around looking like that is impossible. Add to that another marker of poverty: a FICO score below 600 and an address on the "wrong side of the tracks."

    Employers (even Wal-Mart) have a policy against hiring the poor because they think we lack work ethic, are unreliable, or are more likely to steal than those who are comfortably off.

    In 2007, I wrote and self-published a book on classism (Classism For Dimwits), including some of what I suffered through trying to climb out of poverty without any help, without any resources built into my life — a life that I did NOT impose on myself!

    I wrote that book because I got fed up with people who have NEVER been poor sermonizing me on "making sacrifices" and "trying harder"...with all that I've been through, having to suffer almost a lifetime of no dental care, no health care, going hungry, going without heat in the winter, being reduced to collecting scrap metal just to afford the necessities that food stamps don't buy...while being told that I somehow don't deserve to be able to live because I'm poor; as if I owe a debt to the upper classes for being born into their world.

  • Val 4 years ago

    Jacqueline, WOW! Thanks for such an insightful post on the realities of life for people who work hard and receive little in return.

  • Profile picture of Michael Thornton
    Michael Thornton 4 years ago

    Great post, Donalee. Congress can argue for months about cutting taxes for the most wealthy, but they can't at all discuss spending a few dollars on the most needy and vulnerable. Maybe the next 99er fax attack should just contain only one message: 666. That might get their attention.

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    I just got off the phone witha staffer of Stabenows at one of the Michigan offices because the DC number was full, she told me that she will not have any information on the upcoming voting schedule until Thursday or Friday and that the offices of our reps and sens for the most part disregard call numbers that are outside their constituents! Make sure that if you are advacating that you call your own reps and sens first before reaching across the state lines! Governers have more political clout than any 1 99er, so I wonder if we should lobby them, to lobby for us, what do you think?

  • RBINTN 4 years ago

    left4dead, I think you're idea is a good one. Governors are in a better position to lobby for the unemployed, because most of the additional benefits are from federal, not state coffers. In TN, our revenues are derived from sales tax receipts, so our governor should absolutely be on board with any idea that would help the state. I emailed outgoing TN Governor Bredesen before the elections, but did not get a reply, but I will try to get through to Governor-elect Haslam soon. I also emailed Governor Rendell a couple of weeks ago, and also did not receive a reply. But maybe now that the elections are over, they will be more open to our ideas?

  • Redpossum 4 years ago

    Donalee, well said!
    You do a great job, once again, of encapsulating the nightmare that so many of us 99ers are living.

    This situation has gone beyond desperate :(

  • sLp 4 years ago

    I couldn't have said it better myself Donalee. GREAT JOB & keep up the GOOD work.

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    .I just read that the senate took today off, must be nice to be your own boss, what a scam they are! Their a disgrace, I used to work upwards of 70 hours a week and they have the nerve to call me lazy, their pathetic! I will have no sympathy for them when the house of cards fall with them inside! Now, its pretty easy to see why so much of the world hates us, Washington does not represent me, they suck, not us!!!!!!!!
    .

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    Thanks Donalee, you always bring up good points, I hope the Grinch will save Christmas! They dont realize with each life there is a story, usually a sad one, thanks for sharing some of yours, sorry you and/or any/all have to go through this crrap, this is rediculus!!!!

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    sorry-ridiculous

  • Y - N. CA - E.B. 4 years ago

    I agree with left4dead - DAM! they took the day off for Leadership selection. No wonder nothing gets done.

    Donalee, Great Truth! Bless You.

    I emailed Governor-elect Jerry Brown to URGE him to communicate with the DCrats to please urge for extension of UI for long-term unemployment & do something about legislating on unfair & improper hiring pacrtices. DCrats, DO YOU HEAR US! Why can't they put a calendar out on -- WHEN UI EXT WILL COME UP? So many DCRATS, No one knows?

    Lord, Give US ALL strength and help. Amen.

    Psalm 92:12 (Joel Osteen #402)
    “The righteous will flourish like a palm tree.”

    That means God knew there would be difficult times in our lives, that things would come against us, trying to steal our joy, peace and victory. He’s not surprised by our difficulties, but rather knew ahead of time and equipped us with everything we need in Him! Because we have strong roots, we are going to bounce right back. The storms in life will come. The winds will blow.

    But no weapon formed against us will prosper!

  • Profile picture of Donalee King
    Donalee King 4 years ago

    AMEN only the turds in Washington just couldn't care less about us! I sure hope God has my PayPal address.....

  • Y - N. CA - E.B. 4 years ago

    Is the pressure WORKIN".........

    Bloggers lobby for jobless benefits
    Groups use online tools to pressure Congress on workers' rights (12:53 pm November 16, 2010) Article on Congress.org:

    http://www.congress.org/news/2010/11/16/bloggers_lobby_for_jobless_benefits

  • Y - N. CA - E.B. 4 years ago

    Hey fellow 99ers, I just got an email from Ambreen Ali -- Congress.org Reporter/CQ Roll Call -- Take a look:

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Yachiyo,

    Thanks for writing about the unemployment benefits extension. We do not know yet when the debate will begin, but the benefits will run out on November 30 unless Congress extends them.

    Next week is Thanksgiving so Congress may not have a full session, and November 30 comes soon after the holiday. That leads me to believe Democrats may begin discussing the issue at the end of this week; it may even be part of a compromise reached with Republicans over extending the Bush tax cuts.

    I hope the information helps.

    Best,

    Ambreen Ali
    Congress.org Reporter
    CQ Roll Call

  • Profile picture of Donalee King
    Donalee King 4 years ago

    This does NOTHING to help the 99ers though! Grrrrrrr

  • Dann 4 years ago

    It seems the sentiment in Congress is "{Deleted d/t Examiner policy} the #Ninety-Niners." Those that survived the election of 2010 are already planning their escape for the PAID Turkey (not so much "thanksgiving" for us outside D.C.) Day recess.

    And the ninety or so Representatives and Senators who lost their bid to return as our masters are out of the office, cashing in their markers to become lobbyists...

    BTW, there's a six TRILLION dollar TAX looming on January 1st, when the Bush-era tax cuts expire for everyone. That new burden is not very likely to encourage businesses to increase their company's headcount.

    When will this nightmare end???

  • Y - N. CA - E.B. 4 years ago

    Early today I sent Ed Schultz the weblink to this article story
    "Credit Score the New “Mark of the Beast” for Unemployed Americans called 99ers?" , he just talked about it on the show just before he shows the "Call-In Question". Ed Schultz does read people email.

    Donalee, I would like the Lord to know I have a Paypal & Bank account too (With not much money).

    Lord, Please Intervene Divinely To My Paypal or Bank Account, Amen.

    Regarding the Reporter from Congress.org, I did mention to her the long-term unemployed people, I just didn't copy the sending message because it was extra to put it above.

    And, the DCrats should know by default extend unemployment means 99ers and plus weeks. Whether you are 3 yrs, 2 yrs, 1 yr, or months unemployed they should know by NOW. The streams of emails & soapboxes on Congress.org is constant.

    But, then again, they do call this Congressional session - LAME Duck.

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    I seen it also, the thought came into my mind that someone must have sent it to him cause it was to ironic, Thanks!! I called my governor today and the staffer there told me that he has recieved a couple of calls this week regarding the 99ers, all I could think is, thats all!!!!

  • Y - N. CA - E.B 4 years ago

    Hey left4dead, you never know Ed Schultz could be paying attention more. Where is your governor's state? I emailed my governor-elect Jerry Brown about long-term unemployment & this article b/c Donalee did such an articulate job.

    Maybe, we all need to call/email our local & DCrats. Dang! they are hella debating on Ed's show. Whew......

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    I'm in MI, gov granholm is already on board to help the unemployed since our state ranks second highest overall! I continue to do my certification as well, every other week so I count in the stats! Most states don't allow people to keep certifying after they rolled off, ours is one of the exceptions!! We elected the wrong gov here, the new one is repub, I dont know how he got in with his record of outsourcing! The only conclusion I can come up with is "the polls are rigged"!

  • Y - N. CA - E.B 4 years ago

    Oh, okay left4dead, Michigan, I was wondering b/c I had mentioned emailing my Governor-elect above some entires.

    I just heard from Ed the Darn Republicans have delayed the Bush-Tax cut talk they were going to have with the Prez. til Nov. 30th. Does this mean the possible leverage for extending unemployment is put off?

    I hope NOT! the Reporter from Congress.org told me it should be end of the week.

    Everybody Take Care & Pray!-) You, take care too left4dead.

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    Thanks, you as well! TTYL God Bless!

  • Joe 4 years ago

    my score is 847, you lazy bums!!!

  • Profile picture of Jacqueline Homan
    Jacqueline Homan 4 years ago

    Joe,
    Your mother lied to you. You're not special. You're just stupid.

  • left4dead 4 years ago

    eat me

  • Profile picture of left4dead
    left4dead 4 years ago

    I did not write this, someone is hacking into this site, A-hole-if you have time to make a game out of this go work for x-box and stop your BS!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Profile picture of Donalee King
    Donalee King 4 years ago

    By the way anyone posting under my name that does not show in BLUE is a fraud! JOE! and your score is likely closer to your IQ of ZERO.....

  • Unemployed 1207 4 years ago

    Another brillant article Donalee!

  • Jackie-California 4 years ago

    Great article, Donalee, and oh so true. I am so sorry for all your predicament's you have had to endure. My heart goes out to you and all other unemployed Americans. My son has been unemployed for over a year, about to file bankrupcty, as he cannot live on what he gets, still trying to pay student loans and credit cards he has had to fall back on, so I guess being 29, he will never work again, if something doesn't happen with these credit scores. To make matters worse, my husband lost his job 6 weeks ago and we now find ourselves on the unemployment line as well. Two, in the same family is just too hard to take, and if I didn't have all my friends, whom I communicate with, I just don't know how I would make it through. We have bills, lot rent, mortgage, and with the meager amount we receive, I don't know how long we can make it. Thank God he has a small military pension that helps us through. I have always been a supporter of the unemployed people in this Country, and my heart, thoughts, and prayers have always been with you all. I never thought it would happen to us as well, but beware, all you people, who put us down, you could be next!! Thank you, Donalee, for your heartfelt story. Keep up the good work with your fight for the 99er's and all unemployed Americans who are dying off one by one. Maybe that's exactly what they want, for us to just die off, so we can all be forgotten. Never thought I would see America fall, but she has fallen to the lowest level I have ever seen. What we all have worked so hard all our life's to get and keep, has gone by the wayside, and the Leaders of this Country just don't get it!! But what do they care, they have their huge houses on the hill, with no money worries for the rest of their life's. Why would they worry or care about us, after all, are we not the one's who made America what she used to be? We paid our taxes, we paid our due's, only to be pushed in front of the bus coming down the street!!
    God Bless You, Donalee, and all other unemployed Americans, who have suffered for so long, and will continue to suffer until someone steps up to the plate and finially get's it right. Pray tell, whenever that will be, only God knows!!
    Thank you for your great story, and the time and effort you put into it!! I pray for you all, and us as well!! Keep the Faith, Trust and Hope alive and well for God will see us through our darkest days!!