by Duluth News Tribune
April 12, 2011 at 7:48 am in Duluth News Tribune
The effort is aimed at keeping debris from running into the storm-sewer system and clogging and polluting streams. Continue Reading
Tags: city of Duluth, Duluth Heights, Environment, Home, Home and Garden, piedmont, woodland 65 Comments »
Aren’t there public works employees, that are on payroll, that could be doing this?
Hot debate. What do you think? 32 18
Yes. One for every single street in Duluth!
Hot debate. What do you think? 25 16
I’d gladly sweep my own sidewalk to ensure that Duluth doesn’t hire any more union grunts.
Like or Dislike: 7 7
They should put this stuff in sandbags and send it to Fargo.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 29 7
They should have every single welfare case in the City out cleaning their block, we’d have one hell of a clean City!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 60 15
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So should I quit my full-time job in order to clean sand up off the street? That’s a fantastic idea. Then I’ll be reducing my household income and increasing the amount I receive in welfare benefits. Brilliant!
It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. You think everyone on welfare is a bum, and then enact rules to prohibit them from leading a productive and meaningful life, and then when the rule backfires, you blame it on the welfare recipient.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 21 39
if you have a full-time job and are still on welfare, there is definitely something else going on.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 35 15
Yep. Single parent raising two kids, receiving no child support. Full time work, full time student. I pay market rate rent (800/month for a 2 br), pay for child care so I may attend classes (about $300/month plus copay – child care assistance helps to pay for daycare while I work, but not in class). Oh, and I volunteer on a weekly basis, and have for several years.
Dang, I’m such a bum! Those darn lazy welfare recipients. They ought to forget about bettering themselves and trying to get off of welfare, and sweep up sand instead. Seriously, why are public assistance recipients the ‘bad guys’? I didn’t commit a crime. I left a bad situation, and now I’m basically a leper of society? Would I be considered a better person if I had chosen to stay in an unhealthy relationship? At least then I wouldn’t be a *gasp* single parent.
I can see having people who are abled-bodied, but unable to find work, being offered paid work to clean up the outdoors (which would reduce welfare benefit). But you want me to not only work full time, attend school full time, volunteer, AND clean up the streets? Ha ha ha! That’s really cute.
Hot debate. What do you think? 32 22
Oh poor Mark, always the darn victim aren’t ya? BOO FRICKEN HOO! You may be the exception, and if what you’re saying is true, you are. However, I see every day the lazy, smelly, hung over, too lazy to shower useless baby makers laying on their couch, watching their brand new 52″ tv waiting for their next text on their iphone. Don’t give me your “poor me” bs about what a victim and martyr you are, I DON’T WORK TO SUPPORT YOU! I need to support MY family. 90% of the welfare cases are where they are because they’re lazy, they should have to clean the streets or cut grass to earn their pay. I have to take a pee test to get my check, they should have to do that too. The “poor me’s” like you are ridiculous.
Hot debate. What do you think? 36 26
Mark – As someone what is financially stable, I can offer some advice to you. First, it seem’s as though you are paying too much for housing. Maybe moving into a 1 bedroom, or a cheaper neighborhood would help. Secondly, I’m not exactly sure how the mother of your children got out of paying any child support, but that doesn’t make any sense. Next, maybe that time volunteering should be used working another job. I don’t pay my taxes to pay for you to volunteer. Finally, there are many schools that offer online programs, where you wouldn’t need to pay for someone to watch your kid. Otherwise, that’s just a 4 year investment, and maybe you should have put it off until you were more financially prepared.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 13 23
But see, it probably against some union contract to hire a regular Joe Citizen for part time work, to help out the city in something like this.
Like or Dislike: 8 14
@swanny (Brian), I would like to see where you got that 90% figure. I highly doubt there’s any survey that concludes that, “Yes, 9 out of every 10 welfare recipients are in fact lazy bums.”
Furthermore, get over the illusion that everybody lives totally independent from one another. You are part of a society. If you just want to take and take and take, without giving anything back, this is what you’ll see (and have to pay for)…
– More violent crimes, because more people will become desperate
– Fewer educated people
– Increased drug use
– Increased imprisonment
– More people with mental health problems
– Higher obesity rates
Societies that are more unequal are much worse off in the long run, and they come with much higher costs. Here’s my source: http://www.equalitytrust.org.uk/why/evidence
Like or Dislike: 12 5
Mark better be using a public/college computer and internet connection. Just like cable/satellite TV and cell phones, internet service is a luxury–not a necessity.
I also agree with bsquared: Volunteering is what you do with your free time; when you’re on welfare, your time is our money……meaning it ain’t free time. Get another job. I worked three of ‘em at a time going through college.
Like or Dislike: 4 8
That stuff gets heavy! how are poeple supposed to heft it into a vehicle ? I don’t have a problem with the need to protect the water, but like others have said, can’t city workers or others do the labor. It would be a good project for a “sentenced to serve” program, but of course we don’t have that here. Which is another issue–lots of free labor for work the employees cannot get to.
Like or Dislike: 20 7
There is a sentence to serve program here. At least there used to be one.
Like or Dislike: 15 2
When my streetlight burns out, would you like me to change the bulb as well?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 44 10
How about if I come over and throw rocks at it?
Like or Dislike: 7 15
Now you’re just being silly.
Like or Dislike: 11 4
OK but I’ll have to charge the city for my labor. What is that street light charge again? Time 10.
Like or Dislike: 12 11
Don’t live in duluth but couldn’t resist making fun of the street light charge.
Like or Dislike: 9 11
If they swept the leftover winter sand into the potholes instead of the gutter they wouldn’t have to haul away a single teaspoon.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 38 6
Two good sized dump truck loads, 26 yards, for the whole city? Sounds paltry.
Like or Dislike: 6 8
I agree yellowdog. It’s probably a worthly program since it at the very least makes us feel good about helping out, but 26 yards is about two or three plow truck loads…..and how many hundreds of those did we spread over the streets last year ? And how many gallons of gas did it take for the people dropping off a bucket at a time and the people hauling it away to get these 26 yards of sand disposed of ?…..Thats pollution too.
I seem to recall (maybe I’m wrong here) a few years ago they suggested cleaning it up and putting it on your garden. I remember thinking at the time thats the last place I’d ever put salty, oily sand full of road grime and god knows what else.
Like or Dislike: 11 7
For every welfare recipient who works, there are four who do not. There is no reason that they could not “help out”, as the taxpayer is in turn obliged to do for the welfare recipient. If anything, community service for non-working welfare recipients may instill pride and a desire to be productive. Shoveling sand or picking up cig butts is much more dignified than sitting at home and modeling behavior that produces generations of welfare dependents.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 33 8
If welfare recipients were ambitious, they wouldn’t even have to be told to do this type of thing. They would simply take the initiative and go out and do it.
Like or Dislike: 16 12
“How dare the city appeal to me to do a little work for the good of my community? I’m a productive* citizen!”
Remember this discussion, my little repugnantcans, when you whip out that old saw about how everyone else is bratty and entitled. But then, on the other hand, if the bulk of you started using your heads there’d be far fewer trolly posts, and far less entertainment for me.
Like or Dislike: 12 14
No I think they want you to sweep up the sand so you dems can bury your head in it and act like everything going on around isn’t happening like you have for the last 2 years. Nothing to see here folks, move along!
Like or Dislike: 6 15
Mark, where did you go, I know your internet bill has been paid?
Like or Dislike: 8 6
I was at work. Where are you?
Like or Dislike: 10 6
Brian – are you having a panic attack? I was at work all day, and then I was at my volunteer obligation. We just got home for the day, and I began work at about 7 am. I’m not a victim – not at all. I’m an individual who ended up in a less than desirable circumstance, and I’m doing what I can to correct it. How does that make me a victim?
bsquared – Firstly, the law doesn’t allow me to rent a one bedroom apartment because I have two children. As much as I’d love to save a bunch of money on rent, it’s not feasible (believe me, I’ve tried). Also, if I moved to a ‘cheaper neighborhood,’ I’d have to pay greatly increased transportation costs, which would negate any savings on housing costs.
Do you really have a problem with a welfare recipient volunteering? Didn’t this start with a suggestion that people who receive public assistance should volunteer to sweep up sand? So what’s the problem? How does my volunteering cost you money? I could pick up a second job, I suppose… but I can’t afford to pay for any more child care, and my kids come to volunteer with me.
And just because you said so, I’ll just drop out of school with one year to go so that I can be more ‘financially prepared,’ even though I am only earning about 10/hour with no shot of earning more than that without a degree. You realize I’m going to school so that I CAN become self sufficient, right? I’m not attending school for fun, I’m going to school to get an education that will allow me to support my family without having to rely on public assistance. You’d think that type of behavior would be encouraged. Guess not.
I’m sorry that you disapprove of my busy and productive life, but I’m not sorry for what I’m doing with my life. Using welfare as a temporary means of assistance doesn’t make a person a criminal – as much as you’d like it to.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 24 9
Mark, no panic at all, you were just so quick to spew your excuses and poor me drivel last time. It’s not society’s obligation to bail you out of your poor choices. It’s great you’re trying to get off assistance but don’t try to convince me or yourself that that is the norm for welfare recipients. And look at how offended you were I dare imply you earn the money you receive for nothing. You’re apparently able bodied, why the hell should you not have to do something in exchange for your pay? There are millions of things, a real simple one would be cleaning up your neighborhood say 10 hours a week, I don’t think it’s one bit out of line to require that. This poor me I’m working so hard I’m “entitled” to society’s financial support is a crock.
Hot debate. What do you think? 13 19
I absolutely have a problem with a welfare recipient volunteering. I pay taxes, and therefore I pay for your assistance. Time you are volunteering could be used towards working and making money, and getting off of welfare.
As for your education, a applaud you for going back to school to try to better yourself. Education is not a right, it is a privilege. If you cannot afford it, you shouldn’t be doing it. I was extremely poor when I was in college, and I didn’t receive any government aid. What makes you any different? Why do you get it? Having children is not a reason to go to school.
Hot debate. What do you think? 14 17
By the sounds of it, bsquared, you just hate poor people. You would rather see somebody work 100 hours a week making minimum wage, then see somebody trying to better themselves with the resources that are available to them. It seems like you are engaging in class warfare (I know Republicans love that term). Oh, way to go, you went through college without any government aid. Did you attend college back when it was actually affordable (as opposed to $20,000 per year)? Or did you just have rich parents so it didn’t even matter?
Like or Dislike: 15 10
Lol Merv. My parents didn’t pay a penny for my education. Somehow I was able to WORK and pay for it myself. It’s a novel idea. You generalize by saying I hate poor people. I hate welfare. I hate how people abuse it. I hate how people think it’s a right to be given handouts. I hate how people use their children as leverage for welfare.
It’s people like you that hate successful people. You hate people that have actually worked hard to achieve something, and have the rewards to show for it.
I did that same thing as you, bsquared. Paid (worked) as I went through college. It’s hard for some to actually believe that people can make it, without gov’t assistance, without gov’t promising something, or without gov’t holding your hand from cradle to grave.
Like or Dislike: 10 11
Both of your comment bring a little more clarity to the situation. Yellowdog, it says you were born in 1965. That means, you went to college in what, the mid-80′s?
In 1984-85, the average cost of tuition, fees, and housing was $4,563
In 2008-09, the average cost of tuition, fees, and housing was $17,143
(adjusted for inflation, source: http://nces.ed.gov/)
So, I think the main reason we both misunderstand each other is because you both assume that people growing up today have the same opportunities that you had growing up. Back in the 80′s, if you went to college, it was because you had ambition and you wanted to. You could easily pay for it by working a part time job, and end up with a bachelors degree that would actually start you out with a good career. Now, fast-forward to today. You would have to work 120 hours a week + go to school full time to pay for college as you go, like you did. And once you get that degree, you still have horse**** prospects of finding a job. Do you know the #1 employer of people with bachelors degrees today? Starbucks.
Main point: The economy has TANKED since you were young. It’s not the same ballgame… not even the same league!!! I understand that many people abuse welfare. But more and more people also legitimately depend on gov’t programs, because the free market has thrown them to the curb. There are no rags-to-riches stories anymore. It’s 2011, not 1980. And until you can understand that, you will be stuck banging your head against the wall with you one-track philosophy, without a clue as to why all these young Americans keep voting liberal.
Like or Dislike: 12 6
Merv: What has caused the cost of college education to rise so much? I’ll give you a hint: It has to do with unionized receptionists and cashiers making $18.50 an hour.
Like or Dislike: 7 9
Well, Merv, you win with your flawed figures, wrong assumptions towards me, and most of all, DEFEATIST attitude. You and your lib buddies keep voting for the free lifestyle, all the while watching for Obama to show up at your doors with a pot of gold.
Like or Dislike: 5 6
Stinger: The reason why education costs have skyrocketed is irrelevant to this argument (although I find your explanation highly questionable). I’m simply saying that you have to acknowledge that things like education cost WAY more today for the average American than they did 30 years ago.
Yellowdog: Perhaps I didn’t guess your college years correctly, but my figures are not flawed. Also, I think it’s hilarious that you think myself, or any of my buddies, give a hoot about the president. Presidents are puppets. Here where I’m from, on planet Earth, giant banking frameworks and multi-national corporations have far more influence on the goings-on of society than presidents, prime ministers, and popes could ever have.
Everything has a higher price than it did 30 years ago, Mervin. You somehow expected it to have remained the same? For the last few years, UMD has been boasting about it’s record enrollment. Your beliefs are in direct contrast to what’s actually going on in the education world.
You’re part of the entitlement generation. As soon as you realize that you’re entitled to nothing, the light will come on.
Like or Dislike: 5 5
Yellowdog, my figures are adjusted for inflation, like I said. Yet even with that factored in, education costs have still soared far above nearly all other goods and services. The fact that there is record enrollment is simply a testament to how desperate people are becoming to get a job that pays a living wage. By calling me part of the “entitlement generation”, is a huge generalization. Most of my generation is too brainwashed by SportsCenter or World of Warcraft to even give a second glance at the politics around them. Those of us who actually do pay attention only hope to have the same opportunities available to us that our parents and grandparents had. (You know, the glories of the free-market system, the American dream.) Sadly, it seems like it is just a dream after all.
Like or Dislike: 4 4
Well, if you’re that disenchanted with the free market system, there are plenty of places in the world where you could be happy.
I held down 2 jobs at minimum wage ($3.35) an hour, throughout most of my college years. I took the initiative of taking CLEP tests and received 21 college credits, saving a lot of money. Some people have ambition. Some wait around for the gov’t to save them, and do not.
Like or Dislike: 4 6
Merv: If people really wanted to earn a “living wage”, they’d stop offering worthless cupcake degrees in social work, communications, women’s studies, psychology, sociology, etc. to the masses. What good does an $80,000 degree do when your entry-level job won’t pay $28k? I guess Starbucks needs more college-educated baristas.
Like or Dislike: 8 2
You mean a 17th century arts and opera degree might not be any good in my job search? Dang!
Like or Dislike: 5 3
I don’t agree that education should be strictly utilitarian. If 17th century opera and art is your thing, that’s great! People should take classes that they’re interested in. The problem is that it takes way too much time and money to get a promising degree that will land you a solid job. One generation ago, you could go to school for 4 years and graduate with a pharmacy degree. Nowadays, the same education would take at least 8 years and hundreds-of-thousands in debt.
This is why the business model shouldn’t apply to education. Colleges shouldn’t try to milk every student for every last nickle and dime they have. They should serve to educate the population as much as possible to encourage a well-informed citizenry. If that was the case, we could solve issues like this street sand thing as logically and scientifically as possible, rather than letting emotions and politics get the better of us.
Like or Dislike: 3 2
I didn’t know a person was forced to go to a college or university for 4 years! Or that those institutions of higher learning, put a gun to your head, and made you go “hundreds-of-thousands in debt.” Could it be perhaps, that job requirements and expertise have changed in the last 25 years, requiring more education, Merv?
Can’t say that I’ve ever heard of a person getting a pharmacy degree in 4 years. The pharmacists I know had to go at least 6 years.
Like or Dislike: 2 3
Merv you don’t like a government institution that tries to nickel and dime everything you have? Welcome to the left Merv. Now you know how the rights feels!
Like or Dislike: 4 0
yellowdog… again, you’re being ridiculous. I never said anything about anybody being forced to do anything.
shanko… I said that colleges shouldn’t use the business model. The business model is all about nickle and diming people for everything they’re worth! And it’s the right that wants to “run the government like a business.”
Like or Dislike: 3 3
And YOUR solution would be what, Merv?
Like or Dislike: 2 2
I assume you mean my solution for higher eduction…
I would make it free, or at least affordable, for people to take any undergraduate class they want to after they get their Bachelors degree. Kind of like when you beat a video game and it unlocks all the levels. That way if somebody had a “cupcake” degree, they could still study other subjects that would help them in the job market. Or, conversely, if somebody had a degree in engineering or medicine, they might want to take a class in public speaking or art or 17th century opera just for their own personal enrichment.
In my opinion, everybody benefits from a well-rounded well-educated citizenry. Other developed countries look down at America because of how ridiculously our current education system is run. While my alternative might be a bit of a stretch, it’s better than bankrupting future generations with student loans and false promises.
Speaking of bankrupting, how would this free education be paid for?
Isn’t it sad that the left wingnuts work so frantically to try to make everyone believe that the only way anything can be accomplished – from paying for College to raising children (or aborting them, for that matter) – is if the government pays for it? Sick, lazy and greedy mentality.
Like or Dislike: 1 1
You have a problem with the idea of a recipient of public assistance providing a professional service to members of our community, but you support the idea of that same person sweeping up sand?
What’s the difference? Both tasks serve the community.
Like or Dislike: 8 10
Now you are just putting words in my mouth. I never said I supported the idea of welfare recipients cleaning the streets. I support welfare recipients getting off of welfare as fast as possible, which means getting a job, getting a better job, or working multiple jobs. I do not support welfare recipients wasting time that could be used looking for a job or working.
Like or Dislike: 12 8
Mark Best of luck to you.
To the rest of you that are so quick to jump down the welfare recipients you don’t know their situations. How do you know that the person you are so upset about getting public aid didn’t just have a major health issue and who’s job didn’t provide insurance? should we be requiring those types of people to be cleaning the streets. Before you ask no I do not receive any type of public aid I pay my taxes and bills just like you but have seen a lot of people loose their jobs due to health issues and need to go to the state for help. Are they the lazy Welfare Recipients your talking about. In my opinion you just can’t categorize those receiving aid at least not in way your are trying.
Like or Dislike: 5 14
Judy, at least some of us paid attention during basic grammar classes. When you want to lecture the masses, please bone up on your 4th grade grammar. Thanks.
Like or Dislike: 10 5
Best of luck to you Mark.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 18 3
Man, gotta love Duluth, we aren’t willing to pay for additional services through taxes and we are not willing to lend a hand to reduce costs when the opportunity arises! FYI, most people do their services to their community after work so no income loss there. Now, I’ll wait for the predictable “City workers are lazy so they should have enough time to do this work anyway” rants.
Like or Dislike: 15 5
Are they going to lay off the employees that are supposed to do it?
Like or Dislike: 9 3
Take a little pride in your home and your city and clean things up. I find sweeping the stuff into a pile and using my shop vac to pick it up works great.
Like or Dislike: 3 9
Wow. It’s amazing how quickly this whole conversation has been hijacked away from it’s original focus. The fact of the matter is, that right now, a lot of toxic sludge is washing down the hill into the lake. We drink the water out of this lake. This lake has been here long before our society and its issues and will remain here long after we’re gone. We are arguing about petty politics and meanwhile, nothing will get done to solve the problem. Why don’t we all quite bitching at each other and then everybody can work on solving the problem. The only obstacle that we are continually running into in our world, is the fact that everyone is all too quick to blame someone else, and then let their pride get in the way when it’s time to admit that they may have been wrong. Grow up people. Get over yourselves. Focus on the task at hand.
Like or Dislike: 6 2
Was the question ever answered, Why don’t you get child support from the mother of your children? Unless she is dead in which case I’m very sorry to hear and even then SSI Should cover the kids not county or local dollars so why is she not paying and the tax payers are? Also does this volunteer work you do actually help offset Govt funded labor and save the taxpayers money like this street sweeping project or is it helping other welfare bums at the soup kitchen which gives people a reason to stay on welfare instead of giving them a kick in the butt to get a job. If you actually were working for a check in place of the volunteer time would you still qualify for welfare benefits? You chose to have kids, you chose to go to school, and you should pay for the life you choose!
As far as the street sand? Why can’t the city collect it screen it and reuse it? Its already loaded with salt and could save a ton for the budget. 2 truck loads? LMAO! Ever see how big the sand pile is just for the city of Duluth alone? Not to mention the county and states piles.
Like or Dislike: 10 3
Couldn’t agree more Tim.
Like or Dislike: 7 1
Will I be on the payroll? Arent we paying city employees to do this work? This is nuts just like the rest of the city administration….Just what are the public works and utilities people doing?
Like or Dislike: 2 4
Collecting overtime apparently.
Like or Dislike: 4 2
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