A significant group of readers who I have been in contact with are still of working age (who said retirement had to be age based, anyway?) and are conflicted with the seemingly conflicting goals of earning a living and a deep desire to live in the Philippines.
A large percentage of the folks who find their way here to PhilFAQS, where you get the answers to questions about living in the Philippines, come here on the phrase “jobs for Americans in the Philippines”, or “foreigner jobs, Philippines.”
Consequently, I write a fair amount on this broad subject, even though I really don’t want to … what can I say, I’m a “pleaser”, I want to give people what they want.
Truth be told, though, the job market here in the Philippines is not well suited to a great many foreigners, and many of you are in a position where I can’t be of much service. Some people even get nasty with me over this … as if I were somehow sitting on a cache of conventional “9 to 5” jobs here and refusing to let the word out.
I try not to take offence at the frustration or sarcasm, tough, because I know a lot of it is driven by very real problems in the US these days. It’s no secret I advocate “building your own job (or more accurately, your own source of income”, because I belive that the “job”, in the concept that most of you reading this have, is an item of the last century. No matter what happens in the US economy, “jobs”, the way our fathers knew them, are dead and gone.
Here’s a couple rather disturbing excerpts from my friend Don Brown’s Get the Flick blog that show me (and you, if you are willing to learn) just what handwriting is on the wall for US jobs over the foreseeable future.
… It’s one of the central points of Mr. Phillips’ book. Nations that start making most of their money off of playing with other people’s money (instead of producing something) soon decline. He makes his case with the latest empires to dominate history — Spain’s, Holland’s and the British Empire. Each grew wealthy from exploration, innovation and manufacturing. Each declined when finance grew larger than other productive endeavors. In America, manufacturing swapped places with finance in the 1980s . In 1950, manufacturing was 29% of GDP while finance was only 11%. By 2005, manufacturing was only 12% of GDP but finance was over 20%.
To make those numbers a little more real, Mr. Phillips also provides a contrast in pay. Or should we say, “executive compensation” ? In 1981, the top spot belonged to a Mr. Genin of Schlumberger. $5.7 million. By the year 2000, it was Mr. John Reed with Citigroup. He made $290 million. Now we have numerous hedge fund managers making a billion plus a year. Lest I forget to make my point — oil field services (Schlumberger) to finance (Citigroup and hedge funds).
In 1981, the minimum wage was $3.35 and hour. In 2000, it was $5.15 an hour.
$3.35 to $5.15 — is over 1.5 times as much.
$5,700,000 to $290,000,000 — is over 50 times as much.
If the minimum wage had kept up with “executive compensation”, the kids at Burger King would be making right at $170 an hour. Let me write that out for you — one hundred and seventy dollars an hour. …
The bottom line is, the US worker has bene exploited for the majority of the 20th century and the downhill slope is getting even steeper. Don’t look for “big business” to bail things out, job-wise, because the “great recession” is nearly over for the rich … stock market is up, hedge funds are making money hand over fist, but the guy who builds Chevies for GM … whose executives are paid obscene amounts, has had to take pay cuts and lose medical benefits.
I got a kind of chuckle … a sad chuckle .. a few weeks back when President Obama was in China and called upon the Chinese to but more US made goods. I didn’t laugh because of any political leanings, or because I don’t like the president or anything “Fox Newish” like that.
I laughed, derisively, because what the hell does he think the US is making that Chinese or anyone else wants to buy?
(You might like to read an article I wrote on this concept of producing tangible “things” rather than imaginary paper,a few months back .. I’d like to add that my tire gauge is still with me and still gets noticed big time whenever I check my air … an actual piece of metal evidence that the USA once was a producing nation rather than a paper shuffling nation of licensed “Hide the Pea” fairground hucksters.)
So what’s your point, Dave. Is this just another thousand words oor so of rant? “I want a job, dammit, I don’t care what Brown, and you and the rest of you old retirees have to say. You got yours, now let me get mine!”
Fair enough. What if I told your there were hundreds and thousands of jobs … decent paying ones … in the US right now, often going begging?
Jobs that might pay enough benefits and have enough retirement so that you could go to the Philippines someday … without needing a job here?
Go take a look at another friend of mine’s site. Mike Rowe Works Be prepared to spend quite a bit of time there, if you really want a job, that is, or if you want to improve upon the one you are afraid of losing right now.
Fair warning though. These are not white-collar “three-card monte” jobs. The majority of them have some physical labor involved, and most of them are also based upon production .. in other words at the end of the week, products have to be visible t the naked eye .. or to the tape measure.
Also, very few of them involve sitting at a desk reading web sites when you are supposed to be working (caught ya, didn’t I? 😉
While Fox News, and Sarah, and the Perky One and the rest of the talking heads Americans seem to look for to furnish their thoughts these days want to tell you the solution is to pay more crooked bankers more bonuses and suck it up if you can’t find a job, heres’s a TV personality who not only knows where the jobs are, but spends his own money to help you find them. Hat’s off to you, Mike.