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  #11  
Old 09-05-2016, 06:43 AM
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Originally Posted by s_stabeler View Post
depends. I would- generally- consider them stupid if they were risking starvation to keep the laptop, considering there are places to get free internet access, but as an alternative to getting help? no.
Actually selling the laptop would be the risking starvation. Even the fast food places in my town no longer accept in person applications and if you apply and can't be reached they don't wait they just cross you off the list and move on.

Places with "free" internet typically have time limits unless you bring your own computer. That laptop is more likely to get the person a job and get them back on their feet than selling it for a meal.

I am between jobs because my ID expired and I can't take a job if I can't fill out paperwork but I found out my state provides a voucher for a discount on getting a new ID so as to make it so I can afford one and get my ass back to work.

I was for awhile working at a company that would rehire and lay me off each year so I spent my summers on unemployment, most contracts were either too short or too long to cover the whole summer. One summer they had another job open up and emailed me. My phone had been shut off and in the 20 minutes it took to reach the convenience store pay phone they had already given the job to someone else.

On top of that I had my license suspended 10 years ago for a ticket that I can't afford to pay because it's over a 1000 dollars. So I can't take jobs where driving is a thing. I also owe on student loans from before I entered the Army when I dropped out of school to raise my kid.

I only owe about 2 grand on my student loans and every year that I work I lose my entire tax return to paying off the interest. I am not eligible for more student loans until I pay it off in full then I can file to go back to school.

I am aware that this is all predicated on mistakes I made when I was in my early 20s but the system is designed to basically punish me for daring to be a stupid kid. I have some hope though because I temporarily got a job paying enough money that I was able to put up enough income to satisfy a company took out a personal loan and moved my folks to a smaller city where the cost of living is a lot lower so they can survive without me working while I look for work. I am helping them continuously lower their own expenses and once I am back to work yeah sure it means still living with my folks but it means three incomes and I will finally have a shot at some of the cool things in life. Maybe a vacation. Finally.
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  #12  
Old 09-05-2016, 12:23 PM
s_stabeler s_stabeler is offline
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I was talking about starvation in the sense of starving to death- that is, if someone would rather starve to death than sell the laptop. That, and the "can't be reached" problem would be solved via a cell phone, not a laptop.

again though, I actually agree you shouldn't need to sell the laptop before being able to get help- it's just that I don't think it's a good idea to have a " I won't sell the laptop under any circumstances" policy.
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  #13  
Old 09-05-2016, 08:33 PM
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I was talking about starvation in the sense of starving to death-
I know but while in theory that sounds like a brilliant idea selling the laptop only gets you one maybe two meals. This doesn't solve your starving to death problem only prolongs it by a few days.

That was the point I was trying to make it's the modern day equivalent of "You're starving to death Bobby so why don't you trade me your fishing pole for this fish."

Bobby now starves to death Friday instead of Monday. Whereas in the real world if things are getting that dire he can reach out with the laptop to millions of people and resources that may help him. Without that laptop he got one nice last meal before he dies and that's it.

It always sounds good in theory to give away something to solve a short term problem and like you said we get pissed when "but why aren't you willing to part with "luxury item" for survival" The thing is though computers stopped being a luxury item sometime in the last decade.

You're right a cell phone is important for contact as well. However you can't apply for jobs with a phone. Most jobs even the lowest end fast food jobs don't accept walk in applications anymore. This on top of the fact that while the laptop you have can be paid for free and clear you have to keep paying to use a cell phone.

If you are in such dire straits that you would contemplate selling the one resource giving you a shot at survival to eat then you sure as hell don't have the money to maintain a cell phone. Whereas if you can use your laptop to connect to free internet you can use your laptop to make free phone calls to anyone domestically.

Google has a phone call function where if for some reason I don't have a phone I can still use the internet to call anyone in the continental United States and it won't cost me a dime. People underestimate the sheer usefulness of a laptop computer. If you wind up homeless that's the one thing you should never ever get rid of even if you're starving to death.

Unless you've given up hope and just want one last good meal before you go.

PS. Also that laptop computer when living in poverty or working poor can make the difference between developing an addiction or not. When you're choices are use WiFi Hot Spots to enjoy free entertainment or drugs you will most likely choose the former. But if your choices are drugs or watch paint dry well it's kind of a no brainer.

I have had times when I wasn't starving to death but I had to decide whether I paid for my internet or my phone. My internet won everytime. And it was the right call I got jobs got back on my feet and got a phone back.

Keeping the phone instead would have meant starvation and homelessness as phones are very simple things that don't do us much good when it comes to getting things done.
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Last edited by jackfaire; 09-05-2016 at 08:48 PM.
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  #14  
Old 03-22-2018, 01:07 AM
Food Lady Food Lady is offline
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I have never understood the thought that phones aren't necessary. They might have a point in saying that a cell phone and a landline at the same time is a bit excessive, but no phone at all? The last time I had to call myself an ambulance I definitely felt phone service was absolutely necessary! I guess internet is debatable but if one doesn't have a car then it is a necessity. When I was car-free I couldn't carry certain items due to medical issues and so had to order them online. The internet is definitely necessary for job hunting in this day and age. And aside from all the debate about possessions, poverty is defined by numbers, period. There is a poverty threshold and there is a way to calculate it. Also there is a difference between being destitute, poor, and broke. Destitute is not being able to afford the basics of life on a consistent basis. Poor is barely making enough money to be able to afford those and sometimes being in want. Broke is having trouble affording much more than necessities because of other unusual obligations like old debts or supporting someone who should be supporting himself or being taxed heavily, things like that. I think these people debating with you are confusing destitute and poor.
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  #15  
Old 03-24-2018, 12:46 AM
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I guess internet is debatable but if one doesn't have a car then it is a necessity.
Nope. In fact in today's economy internet is always a necessity while a car is not.

(Allow for differences in other parts of the world)

The job I currently have at a restaurant cannot be applied to in person. You could drive there in your car walk in find a manager ask them about a job and they will say, "Sorry you need to apply online here's the link"

This is not the exception. Most businesses in my area operate this way. The ones where you can walk in to apply are the exception.

I don't have a car. I got the job I have via having internet and I get to go to work every day and home not having a car.

I say this varies not based on the internet part but rather based on the car part. Some places a car is equally vital. But I have yet to find a community where the internet wasn't most companies preferred method for filtering applicants.
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  #16  
Old 03-26-2018, 05:21 AM
bainsidhe bainsidhe is offline
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I think part of the problem is that the definition of poor has changed over time, and things that were once considered a luxury are now accessible and necessary. This doesn't stop people from thinking of cell phones and internet as a luxury, however.
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  #17  
Old 03-26-2018, 04:53 PM
s_stabeler s_stabeler is offline
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It's more that the basic viewpoint seems to be that if you don't save every little penny possible- and/or sell anything not an immediate necessity for survival- you aren't really poor, just lazy. It's...not a viewpoint I can agree with, especially since it's the viewpoint that gave rise to Workhouses.
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  #18  
Old 04-07-2018, 04:02 PM
protege protege is offline
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Originally Posted by bainsidhe View Post
This doesn't stop people from thinking of cell phones and internet as a luxury, however.
There's a huge difference between having a cell phone/internet...and dropping nearly a grand on the newest iCrap, and then whining about not having cash to eat. It's nice to have nice things. But, if you can barely afford a packet of ramen noodles to pay for it, there's a problem. People don't want to hear that they'll have to cut back.

As for the car thing, remember that not everyone lives in an area with adequate public transit. Sure, I live outside Pittsburgh. But, after decades of financial mismanagement, the Port Authority has cut back service to the 'burbs. I live and work on opposite sides of town (and no, moving closer to work isn't happening--it's too expensive over there), and there's no direct service. I'd have to take 3 buses to get to work. With the cutbacks, I'd end up missing the transfers. No thanks, I'll drive instead. Along that line, just getting around is painful--42 years old, and I have arthritis in my knees. Steps are not my friends, and walking to the bus stop when it's cold isn't happening either.

I grew up being poor. My dad was out of constantly out of work. He couldn't (or wouldn't) hold down a job. While there was a roof over our heads, the lights on, and food on the table, trust me...it sucked. Never knowing if the furnace would break down in the winter, if one of the cars would break down again, if we'd lose the house, or one medical bill would bankrupt my parents. Yet, because we lived in the 'burbs, we weren't considered poor. Apparently, poverty only exists inside the city limits

Last edited by protege; 05-07-2018 at 04:17 PM. Reason: Quote tag :p
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