Unemployment Diary: Land of Opportunity

5 Apr


I haven’t received a single call back on the dozens of jobs I’ve applied for. But I did get my first scam call from my resume posted with the Unemployment Department. I’m stunned it took so long.

Mr. Tacos, I found your resume online and I have an opportunity that may interest you.

It’s a boiler room job stealing old people’s retirement accounts. But what isn’t. That’s the entire banking system.

Or it’s not even that. It’s a pyramid scheme selling unemployed people the promise of stealing old people’s retirement accounts. It doesn’t pay. I need to be clear that this is a commission based position. It’s not baseline salary plus commission. But that didn’t come up until later. First it was, are you familiar with the Baby Boom Generation? The way to make money in this economic climate is to attach yourself to a growth industry. Well, the Baby Boomers are turning 65 at a rate of 11,000 per day. Are you familiar with 401k plans? Our company helps baby boomers switch over from 401k’s to a financial plan they have more control over. Is this something that interests you. We work with multibillion dollar corporations. Have you heard of Transamerica, IMG, Prudential. Is this something that interests you. I’m thinking of the box on the unemployment form. Did you REFUSE any work? Uh, yeah, it interests me. Great. Well, there is some training, there is a licensing process. It is clear that it is unpaid training. I have to ask if the training is free. It is. But the license costs money.

I need to be clear that this is a commission based position. It’s not baseline salary plus commission. It doesn’t pay unless you get old people to sign over their retirement accounts. Then you get residual income, she told me. Income trickling in for the rest of your life. We have a group orientation Wednesday evening; is this something that interests you. She reminds me that this is professional attire. No tennis shoes. A suit is preferable, a jacket and tie and nice pants. I tell her I’ll do my best to wear pants.

I’m gonna go. I’m gonna go just to see who else went. Working class people who don’t know better, a young guy who wanted to be asked where he was going in his suit and tell a girl a “business meeting.” I went to one of these things in college, with a girl who liked to dress up in suits and tell people she was a businesswoman. I went to one of her seminars and it was a guy presenting water filters you could sell to your friends. There’s a chemical the thing filters out that makes water turn yellow when you add another chemical, so it looks like the ordinary tap water is pee. That was their magic trick that would get people to buy. But, no one sells water filters. You sell the opportunity to sell water filters to people who sell the opportunity to sell water filters and so on. It was $1500 to get in on it.

Really you pay to put on a suit and get out of the house and tell people you own your own business. You pay to have an answer when people ask what do you do. To have a thing that you’re dying to drop into every conversation, and until an opening comes up you hang back squirming like a kid who has to piss on a long car ride. I own my own business! All anybody wants out of a job is to sound cool.

Predators know this. Anybody who comes out and offers you something is a predator. Anything that’s real, you will never know about; you have to know people, you have to chase it down. Anything advertised is a scam or they wouldn’t advertise. Everything is a plot to steal from the poor by offering them the opportunity to steal from the slightly stupider poor. We make nothing and we learn nothing and we pay to put on costumes so we can look useful. Take a little piece of what you stole from the next dumb jerkoff before you hand it up the ladder. Is this something that interests you.

7 Responses to “Unemployment Diary: Land of Opportunity”

  1. dressyarson April 5, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

    I own my own business. A couple of them, actually. I make a living this way, but it’s not that great. I usually don’t mention that I’m self-employed immediately when people ask what I do. I also don’t mention that I generally sleep until the middle of the day.

    • Stephen April 5, 2013 at 4:55 pm #

      I also sleep to mid day and am also self-employed. Wait, no. Unemployed.

  2. Vigilante R April 5, 2013 at 5:00 pm #

    Oh yes. I’m well aware of that particular “business”. At 20, I got involved with one through my dad, and the atmosphere was a cross between evangelical church and what Ayn Rand would come up with if she had made Scientology. “Selling” insurance, mortgages (before the housing bust), and securities. Of course you had to pay $200 dollars for the right to do so. And don’t forget that what you’re really selling, is the “opportunity”.

  3. JC April 5, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

    someone just tried to get me into this. wouldn’t be surprised if it was the same ‘company’.

  4. lolcopterpilot April 5, 2013 at 9:46 pm #

    Someone also tried to rope me into a MLM. What really struck me was 2 things on the website. First, everything was very general, all buzzwords, no substantive discussion of what it is they actually sell. If I was a prospective customer I would not know how to give them money, and what I would get in return. Which slowly led me to the second point: they are selling you. They had a bunch of youtube videos of “successful” marketers/associates/knaves, and they were all the same, “anyone can do it, you don’t need any education or qualifications, you don’t need to work hard, you control your own life, you can make your dreams come true, you have to believe in it to work, there is no limit on your earning potential, once you have 20 solid referrals who each have 20 etc you will be set, and can sit back and relax, etc…” Really? There is a secret job available to me, and I don’t need any qualifications or work hard and will make lots of money? It was amazing to me how in all the videos everyone kept repeating, “I’m not smart and I make lots of money, you can too!” Like, they want dumb people, they are explicitly soliciting for people dumb enough to fall for a MLM.

    And people buy into it. They prey on minority/immigrant and working class neighborhoods with their bullshit seminars in airport hotels. I pointed out all the holes in the business just from the website and why it was a MLM and a bad idea, my friend was still like, “It may be an MLM, but it works for some people, just give it a try…” I could see in his eyes he was a true believer. I even pointed him to an FTC and other studies that showed like only .002% of people in MLMs make even minimum wage equivalent, and like 98% lose money. WTF kind of business plan requires employees to work for negative pay? Yet people still believe it, because in the end they want to believe it sorry for rambling just buzzed

    General rules for spotting a MLM:
    1) No specifics discussed at first, until…
    2) You must pay to join, to get the secrets
    3) Fabulous prizes for your succes. Grow up people. When you were five and went to an arcade like Chuckie Cheese you wanted 1000 tickets to get the inflatable dolphin. You didn’t think about how coins to play games to get tickets, cost money. At some point as an adult you have to realize you can buy an inflatable dolphin with the money in your wallet already.
    4) Lots of positive reinforcement, no negative talk allowed.
    5) Very, very pushy. Generally the more people have to push you to do anything in life, the more you should just think, why am I not going willingly? oh yeah because this is a terrible idea.
    6) Pictures of boats. Everybody knows white people buy boats to show they are rich and successful. We have pictures of people on boats. Some people who are at the top of this MLM have boats. Therefore, if you join, one day you will have a boat.

  5. Cakes and Shakes... April 6, 2013 at 6:29 am #

    “All anybody wants out of a job is to sound cool.”

    TAF = True as Fuck.


  1. Daily Linkage – April 6, 2013 | The Second Estate - April 6, 2013

    […] Unemployment Diary: Land of Opportunity | delicioustacos […]

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