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Obama’s Jobs Plan

Obama’s Jobs Plan

When President Obama and J.P. Morgan introduced the 100,000 Jobs Mission I was extremely excited because I was planning to propose to my girlfriend soon and the idea of career opportunities would make that possible. (I’ve since proposed in light of the fact that I don’t have a job). I immediately called the J.P. Morgan recruiters and sent over my resume. The problem was that the only jobs they were recruiting for were short term opportunities that dubiously ended after tax season ended. Using tax incentives to increase job growth is what we did hundreds of years ago. Haven’t we thought of something better yet?

Obama’s track record so far has been to use corporations as instruments to boost the economy in place of the Keynesian spending recommended by most economists. It’s easy to blame this on Obama but it is a systemic problem. When my GI Bill was not paying and many veterans going to school in New York were getting evicted from their apartments, the relief check of $3,000 came from a corporation as well.

A friend from my creative writing class wrote an article about that time period and I was quoted as saying “Calling the VA is like calling the radio station to get a prize.”

The irony was that the GI Bill was something that I earned in my service and not something that I should have been waiting for like a game show prize. Since then I have applied to several of the employers listed as “military-friendly employers” but I’m starting to think that it’s a PR scam. I have over 10 years work experience. I have a degree from a top tier school with honors. I have numerous awards and recommendations and commendations but no one seems to care. Most of the time I can’t get even get an interview.

You’ll forgive me if I’m not optimistic about President Obama’s job plan. At the beginning of his term he sponsored a smoking cessation bill that was written by RJ Reynolds so they get market share from other brands. The only ones who benefited from the so-called healthcare reform were the pharmaceutical giants. If we don’t get this country under control the Jetson’s future we all anticipated will be a wasteland where only a small portion of the population will afford to be healthy while the rest of us are farmed like a disposable resource.

About karololesiak

Karol Olesiak is a poet, writer, and activist. He is a graduate of Eugene Lang Liberal Arts College at The New School and an MFA student at The University of San Francisco. As a Navy sailor, he commissioned the USS Ronald Reagan, navigated the straits of Magellan, and served in the Persian Gulf. In 2011 Karol headlined The Bowery Poetry Club in New York. That same year he became a staunch supporter of The Occupy Wall Street Movement and became entrenched in the Occupy network of affinity groups. Karol was one of the founders of www.soldiersforthecause.org. He became an antiwar activist in 2010 and has written many political essays. He has been translated into Spanish. Karol's poetry has been incorporated into cinematography and sound art.


  1. Reading this post strongly reminded me of my Pop’s experience upon returning to the U.S. after WW II. Like millions of other Greatest Generation veterans, he immediately enrolled in college under the GI Bill, earned his degree and hit the job-search trail. Because of U.S. policy after the war, there were millions of jobs for returning veterans, enabling them to marry, start families, even buy a home — the fullfilment of our cherished American Dream.

    Now it’s 2011; where is our American Dream? As the veteran so clearly describes in this post, it seems to have morphed into the American wasteland. By privitazing everything from our military to prisons, schools, health care, student loans, home mortgages, capitalism has succeeded in making itself exceedingly rich while bankrupting our country.

    In factory farms, real pigs are referred to as “units”, just part of the production process. I fear we’ve all become just so many corporate “units”; valauble for our spending, but certainly not worth investing in as a long-term resource.

    The unemployment rate for returning veterans is a national disgrace. Each veteran is a powerful voice for change. Making your voices heard in the 2012 elections might just reclaim the American Dream. It is not in the boardrooms that purchase and control politicians. It is in us.

  2. Thank you very much for your comment. I agree that the ‘American Dream has morphed into a wasteland’ and I I don’t think that my case is unique. The question has always been how much will the American people take? I got myself through my tour by convincing my self I worked for the people of the united stated and that I was there to protect my brothers in arms from being hurt. Many people that I had served with didn’t even know why they were there the military was just the best option the system could give them at social mobility. The American Dream is elusive because it is a static conceit defined by its time period but we can all agree about certain levels of necessity. I don’t worry about me because I am always clever enough to survive. The worse things get the more lowest classes get crushed by the impact. They are all of our concern.

  3. What was your MOS/AFSC/Rate? What’s your degree in and did you take TAPS upon separation?

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