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>Why is he only working 27 hours/week? If he's serious about raising himself out of poverty, finding another part-time job would seem to be a priority.

Have you accounted for the commuting time? Like the bus that eats away 2 hours every day, and that he sometimes he has to wait for 3 hours?

Plus, nobody raised himself out of poverty by getting multiple part-time, bad-paid jobs. The way to do it is to get a better paying job.

Also: those 27 hours, are they regular, or the boss can reschedule him as he pleases (as often happens)?

This book is an eye opener of how people doing these jobs get by:

http://www.amazon.com/Nickel-Dimed-Not-Getting-America/dp/08...

(the journalist forfeited her money et al, and worked and lived as a minimum wage employee for a year or so, in order to write the book).




Also, simply by showing up to work on time and not being irresponsible, the author of that book had multiple opportunities to improve her situation (e.g., her managers offered her promotions, etc). She turned them all down since she wasn't aiming to write a "how to lift yourself out of poverty" book.

See also the book "Scratch Beginnings", about how a guy started with only $25 and got himself into a stable financial situation (e.g., apt, pickup truck, $5k in savings) in only 10 months with only hard work.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0061714275/ref=as_li_ss_tl?...


Both are anecdotes. I would question if Mr. Frantz would have found himself in the same situation as the author of Nickled and Dimed, perhaps even just based off of the fact that he has black skin he may not have been offered a job or promotions.

As explained in the article, Mr. Frantz has been promised promotion many times only for the company to renege. Is this because he does a poor job? I can't really say. It sounds like he is at least somewhat ambitious in getting ahead. Also it sounds like his employer isn't above being unscrupulous.

I've also found myself moving up the chain only to suddenly have the position eliminated and demoted further back down the chain. One job I worked at, getting a promotion was the first step to getting fired what with how often they fired managers. In some cases it's better to keep your head down, but it all depends on the situation. I think it's a bit of a fairy tale to say you'll start in the mailroom and end up an executive in 20 years by "working hard". Does it happen still? Probably, but rarely.


Could you give more details of these multiple opportunities where "her managers offered her promotions, etc."? I don't have a copy of the book myself so can't check, but looking around on the web it sure doesn't look as if that's the case.


I read it a while back, and don't have it on hand. The one thing I'm quite sure of is that she had the opportunity to work at walmart or another store which paid more - she chose walmart.

My guess is that criticizing some local supermarket (unknown outside of portland or wherever it was) wasn't as sexy as criticizing big evil Walmart.


>My guess is that criticizing some local supermarket (unknown outside of portland or wherever it was) wasn't as sexy as criticizing big evil Walmart.

Your guess is wrong. From the online book synopsis:

Ehrenreich is eventually hired by both Wal-Mart and Menards (a large-box building supply retailer), passing both the personality and drug tests and enduring their respective new-employee orientations. After discovering that Menards not only back stepped on the initial starting wage of $10 per hour but would demand 11-hour shifts, Ehrenreich opted to accept the Wal-Mart position, despite its lower wage scale.


>Also, simply by showing up to work on time and not being irresponsible, the author of that book had multiple opportunities to improve her situation (e.g., her managers offered her promotions

Yes, and by also being white AND highly educated AND not having a family or people dependent on her AND not having a history of abuse and poverty to NOT draw strength from. Which was hardly the case for most of the other employees.

Not that I remember those cases for "promotion" in the book.




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