They Just Don’ Wanna Work

Another chestnut I love hearing these days is how ‘they’ don’ wanna work. You hear it a lot from business owners wringing their hands at people ‘not wanting to work’, the implication being these people, whomever they are, are both lazy and taking advantage of the system. 

This has been a familiar refrain for years but it’s gotten louder in the days of Covid. Fear of GETTING Covid is never really considered. Who is afraid of that? 

As if. 

They’re lazy!

I mean, sure, there are always people working the system. Milking it for what it’s worth. I have talked about this in other blogs but when I was fired, er, unemployed, I lived in fear of that approaching day when I didn’t get unemployment. 

I had been unemployed one other time but not when I had a house, a wife, and effing bills. 

I am not sure if the people who claim folks are ‘livin’ on welfare’ are familiar with it but welfare of any sort sustains you, it doesn’t grow you. You can’t get rich off of it – unless you are literally bilking the system, which again, does happen. Most folks though are just trying to survive long enough to get a job and get on with their lives. Credit runs out. That welfare runs out. A day will come when someone wants you to pay up. Welfare is like living in constant grief, unable to move on or up, unable to get ahead, because you are trying desperately to survive. 

It’s learning to swim as you drown. 

Buddy, you better learn, and learn fast. 

You better hope that job pops up. 

I am lucky because I found work, some people don’t. 

I have known a LOT of people who lose a job and can’t. 

They have to deal with the games businesses want to play where they aren’t that anxious to hire anyone, don’t tell you how much they are paying, and don’t really want to tell you everything about the job. 

OH, but man, people are so laaaaaazy. 

That’s why it took nine months for me to find permanent work when I was let go and it was at a job I already had had. 

OH, but maybe it was YOU!


It is definitely a possibility. 

Or I just didn’t have some sort of astounding resume that let them lazily browse it without reading it. 

I am a grown man with  years of experience and a college degree and I got two interviews in that time. 

One was for a sales job that didn’t tell you that until you went all they way out to them, which for me was an hour both ways, where I had a ten minute interview. 

Gimme a break. 

Sure, if you are about to get kicked onto the street then beggars can’t be choosers but why do we act like people who have standards and want to work somewhere they want to be are demanding too much?

Why if you want to be paid a fair wage, want to work full time, and want insurance are you considered demanding?

Stop wanting people to work for the wage of teenagers and to be able to be pushed around like them?

OH, well my kids have worked since they were teens, people just don’t wanna work these days. 


Is that what it is?

I worked as a teen. Not because I had to but because opportunity arose. 

Am I a better person for it?

Not really. 

It gave me a little money, it kept me busy, I guess, but I didn’t learn skills that changed my life. I had two ‘big’ youth jobs. One was cleaning an office with my sister, which, big deal. The other was working over the summer when I was 17 painting. Before it was over I was the last kid standing and it sucked. I worked alone, the guy who oversaw us was weird and didn’t really care a whole lot about our safety – painting in closed off rooms, not so great – and he barely spoke to us. He and his buddy would disappear and paint elsewhere and avoid us all day. 

I had old school parents so I had some manner of work ethic, I suppose, because I went and I did my job. 

I hated it though. 

Great lesson. 

But you learned responsibility!

I already had it instilled in me, thanks. 

But let’s talk about grifters, shall we? Is it worse for some idiot to think they are getting one over on the system because they get benefits without needing them or is it worse for a rich person to shirk paying taxes because they don’ WANNA!

For some reason we act as if we owe the rich and business owners because well, they’re keeping us all employed, aren’t they?

Sure, in a literal way, some give us jobs. 

But if they’re crying about NO ONE WILL WORK then do they really care about us?

And if they don’t care about me, I sure as heck don’t care about them. 

We hear all the time about the ‘gig’ economy and that people have to have a side hustle. Why? Because they aren’t making enough at their jobs and the world is only getting more expensive. Oh, but they live more frugally! Yes, let’s make people sacrifice all joy so they can pay bills and be good drones. Look, we’d all be better off with less debt but we shouldn’t be punished by having to work multiple jobs if we are just doing the best we can.

That isn’t the American dream, that’s stupid.

Places do need workers though.

I do understand.

The workforce changed during Covid. People got skittish about working in the public. People started wanting more money, more benefits, and more joy in their jobs. People wanted more. Makes it hard to run a business if everyone wants more and you don’t have it. 

I do understand. 

But there has to be a point then where you say – what can I do?

What can you do to be a place people want to work? 

Unfortunately, this is hard work. 

It’s work no one seems to want to do. 

The top doesn’t wanna cut any money off of what they make to make more salary for people. 

They don’t wanna hire people full time because they don’t wanna pay benefits. 

Smaller businesses just want folks to come in, punch a clock, and do their job. 

But they aren’t robots. 

They have needs, wants, and dreams. 

You are just as much a tool as they are to you. 

You’re a means to an end. 

You may get workers but if they’re always looking at the Want Ads then do you really have them?

I worked for a guy once, for about a year if not longer, and I finally had had enough and was leaving, and he told me – well, you can’t expect labor to stay. 

He didn’t care if I was there or not. 

I was just a pair of hands to move stuff for him. 

People need work. Businesses need labor. There is a way to marry the two. The system has to change though. Yeah, a lot of folks don’t wanna work. I don’t, I have other stuff I wanna do, but I have to. We all do. Businesses need to change though. Bosses need to change. I worked for someone who never once sat me down and tried to help me before they fired me. They had no interest. I got a raise a few weeks earlier even. That was how checked out they were. I may have deserved to be fired but there is an investment in your workers, time, effort, and money that you put into them and if you aren’t going to try to retain them, to help them and they haven’t broken some sort of rule or crossed an uncrossable line then that’s on you. If you won’t throw me a life preserver and just watch me drown then sorry, but you’re culpable. You’re a bad boss. 

We have to make work, not fun, but bearable. 


We have to work to make people know they are cared about. 

If you can’t pay them tons then find out what they need and try to meet that need. 

Be more compassionate for god’s sake, and stop acting like people are doing this to you. YOU DON’ WANNA WORK! 

Stop acting like adults are willful children who won’t settle down. 

Maybe, just maybe, your job isn’t worth it anymore. 

Ya think?

Maybe YOU are a bad boss. 

I hear all the time that there are jobs everywhere. And there are. Jobs that don’t grow you. Jobs that are just money. Jobs that are patches. There are a lot of those. But then there are other jobs where they have such ridiculous expectations for such laughable pay it’s no wonder there’s an opening. They want years of experience and want you to perform the duties of at least two full time jobs but for the pay of one of them. They want you to answer phones AND do their books. Or they want you to do their website and their graphics work as you do their accounting. It’s laughable. This is where we are though. Businesses cut labor and want people on the cheap.
They hire for just under full time so they don’t have to pay benefits. 

The world changed after Covid. 

Look around. 

Covid and, sorry, here comes the politics, the last administration screwed up a lot in this country and I dunno if we’ll ever get back to what we had. 

What are all those people who don’t want those jobs doing?

No idea. 

It got real expensive to live lately though and few jobs seem to want to help workers make up the difference. 

I know I have been looking around for a while to see what’s out there, to see if I can find a writing gig somewhere, and get nowhere. And maybe it’s me. 

Maybe it is. 

Probably it is. 

Or maybe it’s just that the real world changed and businesses didn’t. 


I write books. I review movies. I podcast. I make movies. Check the links for the goods

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