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Officials Say "Capes For the Unemployed" Plan Not Super

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the best-and-worst-laid-plans dept.

Businesses 392

After what must have been an epic marketing meeting, a Florida unemployment agency decided to give 6,000 red capes to the jobless as part of its "Cape-A-Bility Challenge" public relations campaign. The capes cost $14,000 (not a bad price for 6k capes actually) and featured a cartoon character named "Dr. Evil Unemployment." As one might imagine, officials are calling for an investigation to be launched. It's a good thing there are an abundance of caped do-gooders without jobs in the area who should be able to help.

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392 comments

Don't like it (4, Interesting)

geek (5680) | more than 2 years ago | (#35881990)

I'm not opposed to the price tag. I think that's reasonable if spent on something motivational. What they did however, was in my opinion, demeaning to the unemployed. It's akin to your boss walking around the office and passing out candy bars for effort. Treating adults like little children is ridiculous. Lift them up, don't hold them down. The last thing these people needed while down on their luck and possibly in dire straits was for some jackass marketing person dressing them up like super heroes and playing fucking games with their self esteem. The people who thought this up should be fired in my opinion.

Re:Don't like it (-1, Troll)

Seumas (6865) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882022)

Motivational? How about getting a job and earning money so you can take care of yourself? What more motivation does one need? I'd like to know if this came after giving everyone gold stars and whether it commenced with nap time.

Re:Don't like it (1)

Antisyzygy (1495469) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882346)

Have you even tried to get a job lately? Its not easy regardless of your education level. Its particularly hard for us younger people.

Re:Don't like it (3, Interesting)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882464)

You think it's easier for older people?

Re:Don't like it (1)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882612)

Depends on your definition of "older". It's always hardest at either end of the spectrum. Young people just entering the market have little or no marketable experience, and unless they're graduates from a high prestigious school they aren't likely to be first picks. Older people in their 50-60s are often considered problematical by younger managers who don't see them as marketable up to date candidates (fair or not). "Older" people like me (and probably, but necessarily, you) in their late 20's to early to mid 40's have statistically the easiest time. We've got appreciable, marketable experience that we can point at, but aren't perceived as "old" yet by hiring mangers.

Re:Don't like it (1)

Antisyzygy (1495469) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882652)

Yes. Between the ages of 30 and 50 it is much, much easier. In fact this age bracket has more experience, similar education, and I am competing for positions with them. Who wins? Them. Today you can't get many jobs without experience, and with more college grads then ever I am forced to compete with more people than older folks will until maybe they hit 50.

Re:Don't like it (1)

darkpixel2k (623900) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882966)

Have you even tried to get a job lately? Its not easy regardless of your education level. Its particularly hard for us younger people.

You know what works every time? "Pay me under the table and I'll work for minimum wage."

Let's face it--if I have to chose between unemployment and feeding my family, I'll chose to cut out the government every single time.

Re:Don't like it (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882628)

How about getting a job and earning money so you can take care of yourself?

I believe the US is down to 4 job seekers for every opening from the recession high of 6 or 7, so clearly something is being done.

In the meantime, you can go take remedial kindergarten math, since you apparently can't count.

Exactly, mod parent up, not down (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882820)

Slashdotters are actually defending this sort of waste of taxpayer money, unbelievable.

Re:Don't like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35883020)

Motivational? How about getting a job and earning money so you can take care of yourself? What more motivation does one need? I'd like to know if this came after giving everyone gold stars and whether it commenced with nap time.

STFU, Randroid. There are currently roughly 5 unemployed people for every job opening - what exactly are the other 4 supposed to do in your fantasy world?

Re:Don't like it (5, Funny)

j00r0m4nc3r (959816) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882038)

The people who thought this up should be fired in my opinion.

Well that will help the unemployment problem for sure.

Re:Don't like it (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882690)

If he's fired, does he get a cape?

Re:Don't like it (4, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882170)

I'd be opposed to it for another totally obvious reason: The cape manufacturer probably is either a committee member's brother-in-law, or bribed the committee to spend public money on their company's stupid product.

Although I guess the cape could help the unemployed stay warm and dry when they're thrown out onto the street.

Re:Don't like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882478)

At least you have a well reasoned basis for disliking this idea that is based completely on verifiable facts and not at all on unfounded speculation.

Re:Don't like it (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882480)

Nah. If that was true they'd have cost $200,000 ... plus free lunches for everybody involved.

Re:Don't like it (2)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882600)

... plus free lunches for everybody involved.

Not all government agencies work that way. I work in government myself, and if a vendor or contractor that is displaying a product offers to provide lunch we're specifically instructed to refuse. We can go to lunch with them, but are required to pick up our own tab. The reasoning is simple: we want to avoid any possible accusations that purchasing decisions were based on "wining and dining".

As a matter of fact, I'd say that the free lunches thing is probably way more prevalent in the private sector, where it might be frowned upon (by outsiders), but isn't actually illegal. When you're spending public money if one contractor loses a bid they can sue you if they think you had non-objective reasons for going with someone else.

Re:Don't like it (2)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882960)

It is illegal in a lot of the private sector as well. There are a lot of regulations on lunches and gifts at least in the DME industry.

Re:Don't like it (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882668)

Are the capes made in Florida? Either way I much rather see government funds going to infrastructure upgrades and fixes. If you need to take unemployment and you are able to work should be working at least part time. You out of work with a PHD. You are strong enough to hold a shovel. 4 hours out of the 5 day week you should be digging ditches to drop fiber cable, super conductive power-grid etc... The rest of the time you should be free to look for new jobs and take interviews, and other stuff. We can cut our budget while expanding our infrastructure, keeping the unemployed out of a complete shame spiral and make sure they are out and productive members of society. When they do get a job again they will be used to working so it isn't a shock again to be back at work. Unemployment and welfare are a good thing but if you keep the people busy and active it is all the better and if they can work to improve society why not?

Re:Don't like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882854)

Are the capes made in Florida?

Probably were made in China. If they were made in Florida, they'd have cost at least 3x as much.

Re:Don't like it (2)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 2 years ago | (#35883000)

Because when you're on unemployment your full time job is looking for another full time job. Being unemployed, in prison, or on welfare does not make you a slave of the state.

Re:Don't like it (1)

ChasmCoder (1818172) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882172)

I agree completely. This "attempt" at boosting confidence could easily be seen as a completely demeaning act.

I also agree the individuals responsible ought to be fired and made to wear the device of their own invention.

Re:Don't like it (1)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882308)

It's akin to your boss walking around the office and passing out candy bars for effort. Treating adults like little children is ridiculous.

Speak for yourself, if you know of a company where the bosses go around giving out Mountain Dew and candy bars sign me the fuck up ;)

Re:Don't like it (1)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882648)

I was thinking I could go for them passing out candy bars. Maybe not gold stars or pats on the head, but I like chocolate. Always assuming this does not impact my salary.

Re:Don't like it (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882656)

Nah, the birthday celebrations are enough. Take a small office with 30-40 people in it, and if you celebrate everyone's birthday there's a birthday at least a couple times per month. Cue the cake and ice cream. And the folks I work with have a habit of buying a whole box (or two) of donuts in the morning just to get one, then leaving it on the counter with a "Take one" sign on them.

When I started here I gained 18 lbs within the first 2 years. I've taken off 12 of those gained pounds again, but it gets difficult to avoid temptation with all the sweets around :).

Re:Don't like it (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882450)

> Lift them up, don't hold them down.

Wait...they didn't tell them they could use them to fly?

I Do like it (1, Insightful)

buybuydandavis (644487) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882518)

You're opposed to it because you perceive it to be demeaning.

I perceive it to be fun, and a little empowering. It doesn't lift you up with someone else's happy talk, it gives you a few moments of thinking of yourself as someone with power, instead of someone powerlessly dependent on the will of would be employers. And it let's you take yourself, and your problems, a little less seriously.

I've been unemployed and gone to Workforce centers. Depressing places. Given the chance, I would have taken a cape. If it was generally encouraged, I might have worn it in their offices. It would have set a more positive tone for the place, and a feeling of camaraderie.

I think it's fun. Personally, I find the usual motivational happy talk dishonest, condescending, and demeaning. People are empowered and motivated in different ways.

Re:I Do like it (5, Insightful)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882694)

Maybe but its not Government's job to make you feel empowered. The Government should not be in the business of self esteem you precious little snowflake.
Someones tax dollars however few went to buy what are basically tchotchkes for the unemployed and not even good ones like a paper weight or something most recipients could make use of. Its simply irresponsible. If that tax (read other peoples hard earned money) money was going to be allocated to the unemployed it should been something useful like a card with some interview tips on it in their mailbox, or at the very worst an extra few dollars on their unemployment checks.

You know what would be fun... (1)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882792)

and motivating?

Actually getting one of the case workers to take a look at your resume/CV and telling you: "Hey! According to what's on file with us, you potentially match X jobs. Let me see if I can forward your resume to some of these places and see what happens", instead of handing out a cape and shoving them off on their merry way, possibly with a list of McDonalds to go to.

Hell, we have the tech available to automate the process, even.

Instead, we have a (probably) too huge agency that shuffles paper and people and feels good about it.

*disclaimer*

I haven't gone through an unemployment agency in decades and am only imagining that that's how things work these days.

Re:Don't like it (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882542)

Indeed. I didn't think "motivational" at all when I read this start. Sounded more like a badge of shame. Were they out of giant red A's to sew on their clothes?

In any event, yeah, the people responsible for this should be visiting the unemployment line themselves.

Re:Don't like it (-1, Flamebait)

alienzed (732782) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882570)

When they are ready to act like adults by getting jobs, we'll treat them like adults.

Re:Don't like it (1, Flamebait)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882696)

When they are ready to act like adults by getting jobs, we'll treat them like adults.

When you are ready to act like an adult by acknowledging that most unemployment is a result of deliberate public policies meant to keep wages low and profits high, and not of some immaturity on the part of the unemployed, we'll treat you like an adult. Until then, go away, the big people are talking now.

Re:Don't like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882580)

On the other hand, I'm not sure it would be so bad if employers provided regular snacks and a nap-time.

Re:Don't like it (2)

wiedzmin (1269816) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882592)

I think the Slashdot repost is missing the point in the article:

It's calling on its inspector general to expand an investigation launched into Workforce Central Florida last month. WFTV prompted that investigation when it reported the agency spent $250,000 tax dollars on staff cars.

Now there's the overspending for you. Unless you call this motivation for their own staff, in which case never mind.

Re:Don't like it (1)

briansct (1857764) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882730)

I worked at Target for a while and they actually did walk around and give us candy for doing a good job. And they wondered why there is a 100% turnover rate in retail. Yup I agree with you Geek! hard to say that this was a good idea. I can't believe what employers do to employees. I've been told that I should be happy to even have a job by a low level manager no raises, no fair treatment, just a pay check, and be happy you get one! WRONG! just plain wrong!

Re:Don't like it (1)

thoughtlover (83833) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882852)

Treating adults like little children is ridiculous.

Unfortunately, this has been happening for too long. Too many adults, as defined by the law, are still called 'kids'. Case in point, the politicians who oppose the wars we're fighting where they ask for Congress to 'get our kids out of harm's way and bring them home'. I often get lumped into that phraseology when I'm hanging out with some of my 30-somethings and a person in their 50s (or older) mentions something like, "You kids must be having so much fun... we didn't have that when I was a kid."

Seriously, wtf? I'm over forty, have worked at my university for over 12 years now, and still get that shit. It has nothing to do with the way I look, because I'm not dressing like some emo teenager. But the perception of my parents' generation seems to be that my generation hasn't fully 'grown up' or taken upon some awesome unknown responsibility that we're just supposed to divine out of thin air. Truthfully, many in my generation still (seemingly) don't care about politics. Yet they also don't realize that active participation in the democratic process is essential to crafting a society they'd rather live in versus the one that is dominated by antiquated ideals that don't match their philosophy or lifestyle.

Re:Don't like it (2)

darkwing_bmf (178021) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882964)

Eventually the old people will die off or be shipped to retirement homes. Then it will be your turn to call 30 somethings kids.

Re:Don't like it (1)

ShavedOrangutan (1930630) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882892)

I think that's reasonable if spent on something motivational.

It should have had a picture of a bum with a 40oz. That would motivate me. Whether to look for a job or drink, I'm not sure which.

Special ed teacher in charge? (1)

pyrr (1170465) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882930)

Seriously, this is so ridiculous it seems like something a kindergarten SPED teacher dealing with profoundly mentally disabled children might dream-up. I mean, "Cape-a-bility"? Really? That's like something straight out of an SNL sketch.

Treating the unemployed like tards just doesn't seem like it would help the situation at all. If anything, it'd probably just make them feel worse.

Re:Don't like it (1)

mr1911 (1942298) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882948)

The people who thought this up should be fired in my opinion.

Don't forget to make them wear a cape.

Re:Don't like it (1)

Kamiza Ikioi (893310) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882958)

It's akin to your boss walking around the office and passing out candy bars for effort. Treating adults like little children is ridiculous..

But, I like candy bars. You're saying we're not getting any? I'm gonna tell my mommy on you! You're a bad bad man!

DR evil blow up the office If I don't get 1million (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35881992)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKKHSAE1gIs&feature=related

Missed opportunity (2)

ZaMoose (24734) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882004)

Let’s face it, they missed out on a real opportunity to establish the Green Jobs Lantern Corps.

Did the recipients have to pay cape-ital gains taxes?

Re:Missed opportunity (1)

geek (5680) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882184)

No offense meant to the OP but posts like this are exactly why this whole thing was a bad idea. It's taken human being who are down on their luck and made them objects of ridicule.

Re:Missed opportunity (1)

ChasmCoder (1818172) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882254)

Actually, it turned ridicule away from the individuals receiving the capes, to those who thought up the idea in the first place.

Re:Missed opportunity (3, Funny)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882244)

I'm surprised they went public with this. Usually, these things are cloaked in secrecy.

Targets For Ridicule (4, Insightful)

crow_t_robot (528562) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882010)

a Florida unemployment agency decided to give 6,000 red capes to the jobless

To simplify the task of acquiring targets to point and laugh at? This is as brilliant as having children at school that can't afford lunch stand in a line to get lunch tickets/vouchers so the other kids know who the poor ones are to ridicule.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (3, Funny)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882138)

This is as brilliant as having children at school that can't afford lunch stand in a line to get lunch tickets/vouchers so the other kids know who the poor ones are to ridicule.

Right, because without explicitly pointing them out, the poor kids might simply be mistaken for very young hipsters.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (1)

jank1887 (815982) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882370)

Actually, many schools have some other method of giving out lunches to avoid pointing out lunch program kids. In my kids' elementary school, each person has an account and punches in a code at the register. kids don't have to handle money (or have it stolen) if they don't want to, parents can send in a check periodically to top off accounts, and kids on the school lunch program do the same thing as everyone else to get their lunch. If I lined all the kids up and asked you to pick out the ones on the school lunch program, you'd probably miss 2/3 of them.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (2)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882790)

That's not exactly a new idea. I'm 29 and even when I was in middle and high school we used a "lunch card" system. EVERYONE used a lunch card with 10 strips on it (so 2 weeks worth of lunches) to get their lunch (there was a machine that shaved a strip off each time the lunch cashier checked you out). You would visit a desk in the lunchroom in the mornings before school started to get your cards. Just tell them your name. If they checked the chart and you were full price, it was $10 for 2 weeks. If you were at "reduced" price it was $4 for 2 weeks. If your name was free they simply issued you your card without charging on the same interval. I typically was on the "reduced" price lunches (semi-poor :)) until my last 2 years of high school when my dad's salary finally topped the bracket and pushed me into full price.

Overall it was a good system, and heck even for the kids eating at "full price", and even 16-18 years ago, $10 for 2 weeks worth of meals wasn't a bad deal at all.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882968)

If I lined all the kids up and asked you to pick out the ones on the school lunch program, you'd probably miss 2/3 of them.

Sounds like there's more kids on the school lunch program than there should be. Not that I think it's a big deal.. in fact, they should just include it in the budget and stop charging for school lunch altogether, except then the brown bagging parents would throw a fit about how they shouldn't have to pay for a program they don't use (nevermind the fact that their childless neighbors are doing just that through their own property taxes).

But I digress. The kids already know who the other poor kids are, and who the rich kids are, and if they don't, they'll figure it out soon enough.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882770)

The smell is about the same, isn't it?

Re:Targets For Ridicule (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882164)

I don't agree. To find this shameful implies that it's the fault of the unemployed that they don't have jobs. I personally believe that unemployment in America is a problem that goes far beyond an unwillingness to work. This is an awareness campaign, not a branding of undesirables. In fact, I bet the investigation is an effort to hide unfair terminations and the use of offshore sweatshop labor.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882902)

At this point, in an economic downturn, sure, there are a LOT of people on unemployment who would happily work (and many who WERE working until they were laid off). That is a development within the last few years though. For a long time unemployment generally was where a lot of lazy people went to get a check for a while. Its hard to shake that stigma that's built up.

It's much like disability. I know at least 10 people on disability. Only one of them actually needs it (he was severely injured to the point of having trouble walking in a car accident), and I have no issue with the people who need it getting that assistance. Most of the rest just wanted to get out of having to work. One guy I knew at first tried to claim he was seeing dead people talking to him to claim that he wasn't mentally capable of working. Once that failed he did finally get it for claiming that he was too overweight to work. Others just want the extra free money. One of the people I know on disability for a "back injury" still works 3-4 days a week off the books in LANDSCAPING (where any true back injury would prevent him from working) just so that he can pull in both the disability check and an under the table paycheck.

As with all things, the people gaming the system truly taint it in the eyes of the public. I don't think MOST people would be against some level of social welfare for those that truly need it, but it's hard to not develop a negative taste for it given how different reality plays out compared to theory.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (0)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882360)

Does that actually happen? Maybe 50 years ago it was considered shameful, but that's back when homosexuality was considered shameful, too. Today, there is no stigma attached to receiving government money...in fact the children who have to pay for lunch would be looked on as suckers by the majority.

Re:Targets For Ridicule (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882458)

Yes it does. Many people are reluctant collect money from a system they paid into. On top of that most people dont even know the number of things they can do at unemployment besides unemployment checks.

and debit cards for food stamp users? (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 2 years ago | (#35883018)

I agree, the capes and the idea of making kids stand in a special line are bad. However the debit cards in lieu of food stamps is pushing it in my book. There should be some things people taking from the government where a little "prodding" to get off would be worth while. Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on your point of view, some do things which show it off all too well; think section 8 housing I have volunteered to clean up afterward.

Wait a minute... (1)

LordStormes (1749242) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882030)

I will so quit my job if I can get some free tights.

I like this from a motivational standpoint, as long as they aren't also encouraging laid-off accountants to become crime-fighting vigilantes. If nothing else, it will keep them dry when they're living under an overpass when the recruiting company doesn't find them a job.

The next bubble (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882086)

The next bubble to pop is the government bubble.

wow, stupid idea! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882190)

What a waste of time and money.
Some people just don't get it...

Great idea (1, Interesting)

RussellSHarris (1385323) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882214)

Only if they're required by law to wear them to qualify to receive their unemployment benefits.

Re:Great idea (1)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882376)

Why is that?

Re:Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882616)

So we see them and remember that our tax money is helping real people that live among us, not faceless welfare queens on the other side of town.

Re:Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882910)

Exactly - the faceless welfare queens wouldn't be faceless any more.

Better than their last idea (4, Informative)

daremonai (859175) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882286)

This is not as bad as Workforce Central Florida's previous idea: Careereoki [orlandosentinel.com].

I wish desperately I could say I was making this up, but I am not.

$14,000 for 6,000 capes? (2)

sseaman (931799) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882304)

I guess that didn't create any American jobs.

Re:$14,000 for 6,000 capes? (2)

Antisyzygy (1495469) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882366)

Neither do US corporations who are sitting on 10 trillion dollars of cash they will not spend on jobs.

Re:$14,000 for 6,000 capes? (1)

Americano (920576) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882816)

Are we upset at this because having cash reserves is never a good thing for the health of your company?

Re:$14,000 for 6,000 capes? (2)

Antisyzygy (1495469) | more than 2 years ago | (#35883016)

We are upset at this because CEO's and other board members are getting record breaking bonuses, corporations are getting major tax cuts, the wealthy has continued to have major tax cuts on capital gains and income, and all of it is sold as "Trickle down economics" which is supposed to create jobs for us peons in America. Its obvious it doesn't work in our present situation. If CEO's would take 2 million instead of 8 million as a bonus they could create 120 jobs. You can't blame a person for wanting to better their situation, but you can blame the government for being full of incompetent tools who don't try to curb this problem. America is on its way out because of greedy politicians who coddle the wealthy and throw bread and circuses for the masses of undereducated citizens. They would be better off investing in science and technology projects which create jobs as well as funding the people's education rather than cutting out their revenue from the wealthy and giving whats left to the masses of poor while racking up major debts that make our dollar collapse. Our purchasing power today is the reason gas prices are so high today, and thats because the dollar is weakening, and thats because corporations are artificially deflating their stock prices while sitting on masses of cash on the order of 10 trillion while over 10 percent of the population can't find a job or gave up and defaulted to social security.

Re:$14,000 for 6,000 capes? (1)

IQGQNAU (643228) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882786)

Import and distribution jobs are every bit as American as textile manufacturing jobs. I can tell you what won't create any jobs, spending another $14,000 on an "investigation". The unemployed would have a better chance at getting jobs with another 6,000 capes.

Over Reaction (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882306)

Creative concepts sometimes flop. ANY business plan can fail and waste dollars. $14K is pretty small potatoes in the big picture - but I wonder how much the investigation will cost. I don't see any indication of wrong doing here. Poor talent perhaps, but at least they are trying something to help.

Marketing is like that. You do 5 ideas that all suck to varying degrees and fail, then the 6th goes into the stratosphere. And those are not always brilliant either. Some of the most successful campaigns ever are just as stupid as this. Come on, this is the land of Two and a Half Men and AXE Wash-Your-Balls ads. Its hardly a scandal underestimating people.

This is just officials making hay, and a dumb-ass press unable to discern anything real to report. No doubt there are many times more than $14K being wasted under 'official' purview.

It's just a marketing (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882368)

campaign. In fact it look like a pretty inexpensive one that is working.

Unemployment agency have a shit ton of services, but they have a hard time getting people to come in and use them. In most state they don't just deal with getting people monetary assistance.

They can help write resumes, fax information, have a computer to check email, interview help, proper attire help. They may ahve JR dept. from varies local companies come in and give talks on what they are looking for.

You don't even need to be getting financial assistance to use them. For some reason not a lot of people come in and use those services.

Re:It's just a marketing (3, Interesting)

jittles (1613415) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882638)

Did you RTFA? They are already under investigation for using $250,000 of government money to provide "company cars" to employees and had to repay over $3M to the Federal government after they were found to have mismanaged federal unemployment funds. Something tells me this isn't just a marketing campaign. They were doing someone a favor.

I understand their concern (1)

senorpoco (1396603) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882384)

When I heard this story I considered getting myself fired just to be eligible for a free cape.

Re:I understand their concern (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882738)

Me, too. Then I remembered even without the bulk discount my job means I can afford a $10 cape if I want one.

The price isn't that bad of an idea but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882470)

Well... I get the picture that they wanted to dress up the unemployed in capes. To be honest, in the 21st century US, walking around with a superhero cape on is not the best way to find a new job...

A sign of the times (1)

IQGQNAU (643228) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882680)

The officials are calling for an investigation of what? They having trouble understanding why the unemployment agency folks are grasping at straws? If that's the case then the folks that need to get investigated and fired are the "officials".

Mom's gonna be pissed (1)

papasui (567265) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882688)

She spent all that time sewing me a cape to go with my superman outfit and those dicks in Florida are just giving them out.

Can you identify the person who robbed you? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35882712)

"No Officer, He had the hood of his cape hiding his face and and evil laugh that went, MWAH-hah-hah-hah!"

And people wonder (1)

magarity (164372) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882740)

... why conservatives think government agencies aren't efficient.
 
  "The campaign which reportedly cost $73,000 includes thousands of red capes"
"Workforce Central Florida spent $250,000 tax dollars on staff cars"

 
Florida taxpayers' money hard at work creating jobs.

Well, what else is there? (0)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882908)

Sometime people in the US have to realize that the economy has changed. It contracted rather sharply which was really an adjustment that was coming for some time now. The US doesn't need as many low-skill people employed as before and even needs a bit fewer high-skill people as well.

There are a couple of things we can do. We could try to unionize a lot more places and guarantee everyone a cushy union job doing something completely unnecessary. Sort of like having two teams, one digging holes and the other filling them in. Of course, this would have to be government-supported. Your tax dollars at work.

We could just skip the make-work jobs and give everyone not working a fake job that pays $25,000 a year from the government.

We could encourage the unemployed to move somewhere else because the jobs aren't coming back. Unfortunately, there are very few places that need more workers of any skill level right now.

The idea that somehow we are going to find 8 million new jobs for people is laughable. They aren't there and there isn't anything the government can do to make them magically appear. So the unemployed are mostly going to stay that way and we have to figure out what to do with them. Just having them permanently collecting unemployment benefits doesn't make sense.

Ulterior motives (1)

pyrr (1170465) | more than 2 years ago | (#35882994)

Next up, the field trip to a big ranch with many bulls roaming around, where the unemployed can run around and play matador with their lovely red capes! That might thin the ranks on the unemployment rolls a bit.
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