Goodwill Jobs

goodwill_racks.jpg

Supposedly, the Goodwill Thrift Store is the largest private employer in LH. They do have lots of people coming in to their massive sorting complex/headquarters/whatever it is, but they also provide jobs for many of the “shoppers”: at all times there are throngs of people waiting for the next rack of new items to hit the floor, so they can scavenge for something useful that they can resell. At the loading dock in this photo, they buy full racks of stuff and the buyers spend the next couple of hours trying to fit it all into vans, trucks, and improvised pickups. You’ve seen them, those little pickups with plywood sidewalls, packed to teetering heights with an assortment of things by a complex process of stacking in a not-fun game of Junk Jenga. (Or would that be Trash Tetris?) Or maybe you’ve sped past them on the freeway, hoping to avoid the very real possibility of colliding with some of the falling detritus of our modern society. A number of those trucks begin their travels here, or maybe at the St. Vincents a block away.

This is the “First World” equivalent to the “Third World” trash dumps where kids and grownups roam mountains of trash scavenging for things to use or sell, we are just one step and a fence removed from that scenario, but since they don’t let you check things out in our local dumps, we remain a classy country. Many people seem to make their living this way, in a parallel poverty economy. I once made lots of extra video game cash by, umm, rescuing boxes of Toffifay chocolates from a local landfill: sold them 2×1, played lots of Mario Bros, and nobody died. Hey, I was a kid, I didn’t know I could charge full price! 😉 In any case, it will be be helpful to have the Goodwill nearby during the coming economic collapse!

Here’s a pic of Tetris contemplation!

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4 Responses to Goodwill Jobs

  1. Your parallel misses alot of fundamental differences, like the life expectancy, nutritional intake (shit, our poor have an obesity problem), access to top level health care, economic opportunities etc are all vastly greater. May not be much of a difference to you looking at the world through the comfort of the United States, but it’s certainly a world of difference to those who do live in third world trash dumps.

    Btw, if third world trash dumps are truly your concern, support the one thing that is more responsible for reducing those very trash dumps and in the processing reducing more poverty than the history of mankind has ever seen: free trade.

  2. EL CHAVO! says:

    Didn’t you hear the news? The obese outnumber the starving by 20 percent around the world. Why? Because the markets give us processed foods that are quick to cook, packed with calories, but utterly lacking in real nutrition. That’s what free trade gives us: cheap commodities that undermine real needs of humans. “Access” to “top” health care? Only for a few, you know it. Most can’t afford even the mediocre kind. Just because the rich can pay to extend their meaningless lives trapped in the medical system, skewing the numbers on life expectancy, that has little correlation to the way working people live and die.
    Dude, did you even read the link you provided? Here’s the pertinent text:
    “The squatters are gone now, forcibly removed by Philippine police last year as a cosmetic move in advance of a Pacific Rim summit.”
    What happened to the squatters? You don’t care, so long as your “Free Trade” appears to solve problems. That’s the kind of ‘solution’ one can expect from your mistress called “Free Trade”.

  3. You need to stop getting your economic data from the Chicano Studies dept because it couldn’t be further from the truth.

    Click Here To See What Free Trade Is Doing Around The World

  4. john says:

    HP maybe you should get with reality. At my mom’s old workplace, where she thankfully didn’t work for too many years, the ladies tended to die in the 50s to mid 60s, because the facilities were refrigerated. They started there young, and did okay financially, for factory work, ekeing out a living a bit above the poverty line, but they paid for it with shortened lives. Eventually, globalization hit town, and the rich owner’s kids were fighting with each other, so the company was sold to a transnational concern from another country. The new owners, feeling no ties or responsibilities to the community, proceeded to weaken the already weak union, brought in temps from Labor Ready, and cut away at benefits until they could barely be called benefits. They also fomented subtle racism (which the previous owners did, as well) to keep competiton between ethnic groups. They even brought in many undocumenteds, aka illegals, to lower wages… and guess who was working in the office, and bossing them around, shuffling papers: yup, Chicanos, White, and Black people. That was something of a change from the earlier days, when Asian Americans were bossing around Asian immigrants. Who says Americans don’t benefit from immigration? This was down near the 10 freeway, south of Downtown, in the 1990s.

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