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Sat Aug 4, 2018, 01:28 AM

So-called "feel-good" stories that "ought to make you throw up."

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2018/8/2/1785447/-When-That-Feel-Good-Story-Really-Ought-To-Make-You-Throw-Up

If you've recently cheered the story of the enterprising young man so dedicated to his job that he ran twenty miles back and forth to his employer day after day until some kindly boss gave him his old car; if you teared up to the tale of the young couple whose baby was born with a life threatening condition prompting a local community to band together and start up an enormously successful GoFundMe page; or you’re just in awe of the generosity of the coworkers who donated their own vacation time to allow a mother a few extra days with her newborn, please take a moment to reflect. While everyone loves the happy endings and admires the spirit of sacrifice these types of stories emphasize, there are countless other untold stories where the outcome is not nearly so rosy.

Jessica Goldstein, writing for Think Progress, captures what is inherently insidious about all of these feel-good stories: they try to put a positive spin on something which ought to be treated with outrage if not out-and-out horror.

Stories like this keep popping up on Twitter like zits on a prepubescent forehead: The sunshiney announcement about the GoFundMe for the guy with leukemia who can’t pay for his own medical costs. (He is employed by an organization whose owner has a net worth of $5.2 billion.) The dad who works three jobs to support his family saving up to buy his 14-year-old daughter a dress for an eighth grade dance. The college student who ran 20 miles to work after his car broke down and whose boss rewarded him for this effort by giving him his own car.


A common thread running through many of these “inspirational” vignettes is the existence of a seemingly impossible social dysfunction solved by the miraculous ingenuity and sheer generosity of others. The focus is always on the unique "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" solution rather than the underlying institutional problems that allowed the situation to exist in the first place.


...more at the link.

39 replies, 3995 views

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Reply So-called "feel-good" stories that "ought to make you throw up." (Original post)
Garrett78 Aug 2018 OP
Beartracks Aug 2018 #1
rusty quoin Aug 2018 #2
Demovictory9 Aug 2018 #3
Leith Aug 2018 #4
oberliner Aug 2018 #22
KT2000 Aug 2018 #5
hfojvt Aug 2018 #6
kcr Aug 2018 #7
hfojvt Aug 2018 #14
kcr Aug 2018 #16
KitSileya Aug 2018 #8
hfojvt Aug 2018 #11
KitSileya Aug 2018 #18
JHB Aug 2018 #21
LSFL Aug 2018 #9
hfojvt Aug 2018 #12
KitSileya Aug 2018 #19
Corvo Bianco Aug 2018 #26
JHB Aug 2018 #23
Boomerproud Aug 2018 #30
LanternWaste Aug 2018 #39
Leith Aug 2018 #13
hfojvt Aug 2018 #17
moriah Aug 2018 #25
Garrett78 Aug 2018 #34
panader0 Aug 2018 #36
Generic Brad Aug 2018 #15
lostnfound Aug 2018 #20
hunter Aug 2018 #32
musette_sf Aug 2018 #33
treestar Aug 2018 #37
ck4829 Aug 2018 #10
GoCubsGo Aug 2018 #24
Garrett78 Aug 2018 #31
Turbineguy Aug 2018 #27
regnaD kciN Aug 2018 #28
lunamagica Aug 2018 #29
tblue37 Aug 2018 #35
Separation Aug 2018 #38

Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 01:44 AM

1. As one commenter notes: "Remember when you used to see cans in local stores...

As one commenter notes: "Remember when you used to see cans in local stores collecting money for some local kid with leukemia? Those went away after Obamacare."


Democrats get shit done.
Republicans just undo it.

===============

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Response to Beartracks (Reply #1)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 01:54 AM

2. That is right. Only Democrats know how to make things work.

 

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 01:58 AM

3. I like those feel good stories. This article has made me think

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 02:14 AM

4. My Sister Is a Retired School Teacher

She told me once that her class was collecting money to help refurbish the Statue of Liberty. My immediate response was to ask why the federal government wasn't doing it seeing as how it's a national monument. Why the hell were 4th graders doing something like that?



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Response to Leith (Reply #4)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:38 PM

22. I remember that as well - it was during the Reagan years

 

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 03:20 AM

5. there are acts of kindness

but the root cause is never discussed. There are many who are not the beneficiaries of such kindness and they suffer. Our society continues to function for the wealthy.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 03:40 AM

6. not seeing how the car fits in that

nor the one about paid maternity leave. Are cars no longer going to break down? Are people no longer going to have long commutes? Is everybody going to be rich enough to own a new car? Where is the social dysfunction?

Plus, I suppose it is heresy, but I do not support paid maternity leave. I just started my 17th year on the job. Suppose I had a co-worker who started at the same time, and who had three kids. Does it seem fair to you if this person gets an extra three months of paid time off (or more), that I do not get? At this point I have accumulated 30 weeks of sick leave and also 4.5 weeks of vacation. (not including about 40 weeks that I have taken over the years) If they used up their leave that would be one thing, but for them to get an entirely new set of paid time off seems highly unfair to me, like it turns me into their slave. Two people get paid, but only one has to do the work.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 04:01 AM

7. Nope. I'm sorry.

I don't think we should remain one of the few countries that don't offer paid maternity leave just because it might piss off some resentful people with decades of seniority. Time to join the modern world.

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Response to kcr (Reply #7)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 09:52 AM

14. decades of seniority

that's funny.

Also kinda funny how the "compassionate" left has selective compassion. Somebody who lives alone, without love or companionship, with nobody to share expenses or house work with, without children or grandchildren.

That person looks kinda unfortunate to me, especially if he is stuck (sort of) in the bottom quintile for household income and also stuck working as a part time janitor.

But no, fuck him, that resentful angry man. If he is looking for sympathy it is in the dictionary between shit and syphilis.

Decades of seniority, what does that mean?

Means I applied for a job at the church in 2005 - didn't get it.

applied for a job at the library in 2007 - didn't get it.

(also applied to the finance department and animal control and didn't get those, but in those cases I would still be working for the city and thus have those decades of seniority (and probably be finance director by now))

sort of applied to be director of Main Street (in 2011?) - didn't get it (with all of these jobs (except in the City) I did not even get an interview, After they fired the Main Street Director they just hired a month ago I decided to apply since she was far less qualified than I am (I have owned two businesses and have two university degrees) but I just sent them an email and resume that I put very little effort into - and didn't get an interview. I was confident that more effort on my part would have the same results)

ran for Treasurer in 2012 - didn't win

applied in 2012 for a job at the water department (which is NOT with the city) - didn't get an interview. (This in spite of the fact that I was finishing a four year term on the board of directors).

Yeah, the privilege of decades of seniority = decades of not being able to get a better job. Oh, and the benefits of seniority? Those are available to anybody else who does the time.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #14)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 10:30 AM

16. You seem to be the one who has selective compassion. Not me.

I don't get how my support for a policy that promotes equality as well as healthy babies somehow equates to lack of compassion for you. Meanwhile, you seem to lack compassion and consideration for them. You're the one with the problem with this policy because of your selfishness combined with your consideration of corporate needs over the needs of workers. That's your hang up, not mine.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 05:28 AM

8. Paid maternity leave is for the kid.

It's better for the kid, and consequently for society. Every American is born, which means that it benefits every Anerican, regardless of gender. Would you also get rid of any other benefit which you cannot enjoy? How about no one gets paid sick leave unless you get sick?

America's lack of paid materity leave is barbaric. There's no two bones about it. That someone on a progressive forum would begrudge a person paid leave after a life-changing and potentially fatal medical procedure makes me question whether progressive is a label they deserve. But then, I'm a childfree 42-year old woman who has no intention of moving from my civilized new home back to the barbarity of the US while such horrid opinions are in the ascendancy. No wonder the US has horrible labor laws when even people who claim to be Democrats hold such antediluvian opinions!

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Response to KitSileya (Reply #8)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 08:47 AM

11. I think slavery is barbaric

but that's just me.

It does not benefit people who are already born, long before it goes into effect.

Really I think paid leave in general is not a good idea. Your pay really results from the product or service that you produce. If nothing is produced by you, then you really shouldn't get paid. In practical terms though, if there was no paid sick leave then people would be coming to work sick and getting everybody else sick - co-workers, customers, etc. Also, I have worked for many years when I did not have paid sick leave. Like from November 1986 until August 2001, and then, of course, I was unemployed from March 2002 until August 2002 when I got this amazing part time job with benefits.

Sick leave, however, tends to be a benefit that you are not supposed to use. Many times I have worked when I was sick, but in the end not really "too sick to work". Once though I thought I was going to have to go straight from work to the emergency room. Even funnier, at that time I was supposedly the boss.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #11)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:02 PM

18. WTF does slavery got to do with it?

Honestly, in civilized countries it's obvious that giving people the right to paid sick leave is good for *everyone* - the sick person gets well sooner, they don't make everyone else sick, their temp gets to work and ensures the work isn't sub-standard, and the whole work forceis more efficient so the company benefits as a whole. It's only in less democratic countries that workers are so exploited they can't get the right to paid leave. In the US, too many like you join with the Republicans because you begrudge others rights so that proper labor legislation can'tbe passed.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #11)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:35 PM

21. Well that was an amazingly odd comparison to make

Lack of mandatory parental leave is barbaric.

Slavery is barbaric.

Wait, does that mean that both slavery and lack of PL are things that shouldn't exist, and we should eliminate the lack of parental leave? If so, then we agree.

If not, please explain how slavery entered into this.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 05:45 AM

9. Both genders can usually take maternity leave

I am not seeing your point. Are you a slave when a coworker contracts the flu? Do your shackles chafe when a colleague has a serious illness that reguires hospitalization? Does your soul cry out against the injustice as a fellow employee lies comatose after a devastating accident?
Your job is to do your job regardless of circumstances. To rail against perceived advantages that others recieve that do not apply to your situation is selfish and churlish.

I apologize for my blunt assessment , but having raised 5 children and being the grandfather of 12 has given me perspective that some may not appreciate.

Let the families bond and be proud that your extra effort has eased the stress of a fellow employee.

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Response to LSFL (Reply #9)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 09:16 AM

12. I am a slave, or at least a lower class

IF they get sick leave and I do not. Otherwise if I earn 10 hours of sick leave and they earn ten hours of sick leave then we are in the same boat. But we are NOT in the same boat if I get 10 hours of sick leave, but they get 10 hours of sick leave AND 160 hours of maternity leave.

Also, I might note, since you have children and grandchildren - you are arguing for something that would benefit YOU.

Both genders can take maternity leave? Well, isn't that special? Doesn't do a damned thing for an incel though, does it? Or for other people unable to have children.

"Your job is to do your job regardless of circumstances. To rail against perceived advantages that others recieve that do not apply to your situation is selfish and churlish. "

Right? Does that apply to all of the "equal pay for equal work" whining? Does that even apply to the demand for "paid maternity leave"?

So it is selfish to complain when people who are better off than you get benefits that you have to pay for, but it is NOT selfish to demand those benefits for yourself or your children?

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #12)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:10 PM

19. Ah. Here is the clue.

You identify as incel, which generally runs on hatred of women and anything that is deemed advantageous to women is seen as injurious to men. Sorry not sorry women and other civilized people are glad women are getting equality so they no longer are forced to have sex with men they don't want to have sex with due to societal, economical and family pressure. Too many men are now (thanks to women' lib) forced to realize they need to work on themselves to attract a partner, and instead they throw a tantrum, declare themselves 'incels', and hate women. Are you one of them?

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Response to KitSileya (Reply #19)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 01:09 PM

26. +1 thanks for fighting this and calling it what it is. Nt

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #12)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:47 PM

23. You are not a slave, and making the comparison is sheer bizzaro speak

Would you feel better if it were opened for all, as long as it was for something useful for society in general? Mandatory leave of absence or sabbatical time?

To teach a several-weeks-long course?
Develop or implement a mentor ship program?
Volunteer for a worthy cause?

Any number of things that aren't just "extended vacation"?

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #12)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 04:00 PM

30. Congrats for outing yourself.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #12)

Tue Aug 7, 2018, 04:38 PM

39. Additional context makes allows a clarity.

 

"Doesn't do a damned thing for an incel though, does it?"

I'd been wondering about the righteous cries from up on the creatively constructed cross.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 09:35 AM

13. Think of It This Way

I pay property tax so the children of people I will never meet can go to school. I pay income tax to pay for roads that I will never drive on. I have to give money to a bloated military that I think needs a serious overhaul (and a diet).
Your words sound suspiciously like rethug propaganda. I'm close to 60 years old, childless by choice, and I have never begrudged maternity leave, a parent taking off a couple hours early to take a child to a dental appointment, or even leaving in middle of a project for a family emergency.

Veterans are eligible for reduced mortgage rates. Wheelchair ramps are built for those unable to use the stairs. Children of millionaires are accepted into prestigious universities because of legacy programs. There are lots of ways certain people receive preferential treatment for many reasons. If you try, you could most likely find yours.

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Response to Leith (Reply #13)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 10:52 AM

17. thinking of school does not really help

As it is more money that I pay for other people's kids.

A wheelchair ramp is not really preferential treatment.

I generally do not pay federal income taxes. That is a benefit that is available to anybody else who wants (?) to live on $17,310.04 (my wages for 2017) and also put $6,500 into a Roth.

But take income taxes (please). A single person with no children who makes $17,310.04 and cannot afford to put money in an IRA would then pay $693 in Federal income taxes. Meanwhile a married couple with two children making $58,400 can put $10,000 into an IRA and pay ZERO in federal income taxes.

But by all means, let's tax the poor to help those better off with their child care expenses. That's the progressive way.

And on the matter of pay. My employer will pay $791.58 a month for health insurance for a single person, $1,163.38 a month for a couple (or for a single parent and one child) or $1,286.30 a month for a family. Thus a family man or woman effectively makes $6,000 a year more than their single. childless co-worker - and it's tax free too. So much for equal pay for equal work.

There's perhaps a key difference, You are childless by choice. I, on the other hand, am not happy about being unmarried and childless. I feel like those who are married with children are already far better off than I am (at least until I meet their spouse (rimshot)) and I resent having to subsidize people who are already better off than me. In much the same way that I do NOT resent subsidizing people who are worse off than me - like those in wheelchairs.

Once upon a time there was no such thing as a child tax credit. Then it was introduced at $200 and I predicted that politicians would fall all over themselves to raise that credit. Now it stands at $2,000 per child, a large subsidy the childless are demanded to pay to those with children.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #17)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 01:02 PM

25. So what, just because you haven't been lucky enough to find the right person yet...

... you're going to begrudge those who have?

If you want to say I have been childfree by choice, in that when I have been involved with men who didn't want to get pregnant right then I used effective contraception, you could say that. But I did always want kids. And because of that, I was happy to pay my taxes for other people's kids. I saw myself as a person who SHOULD be paying more taxes, because I wasn't raising a family on that same amount of money.

Sorry. I still don't buy people who complain about tax cuts for working families just because they're single. Whether they think the world's overpopulated enough or are resentful that their time is running out (I'm 38, it's unlikely without insane amounts of money I'd conceive, would rather foster or adopt if I meet someone capable of fatherhood) and think it's harder emotionally or financially to be single than raise children.

There might be many emotional rewards in parenthood, but my observation is kids certainly don't make your life easier financially.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #17)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 04:58 PM

34. I think Republican Underground would suit you better.

I don't want to spend a lot of time addressing your standard-fare right wing talking points, so I'll just make a few quick comments:

Workers are more productive when they have less stress (thus employees are rewarded with paid leave of one kind or another).

All of society (including my wife and I, who have opted to not have kids) benefits from children being well-educated, from parents being able to provide necessities for those children, from everyone having transportation needs met, from everyone having access to affordable health care, from clean air and water, and so on.

Parenting is a lot of work, and hugely expensive. It's an epic responsibility, so yeah, government does what it can to provide some assistance (though far less than other national governments provide). As a childless couple (which also has many benefits such as far fewer expenses and much greater freedom), my wife and I don't begrudge that at all.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #17)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 06:01 PM

36. probably a good thing you are unmarried and childless.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 10:23 AM

15. Perhaps your employer should hire more people

That way maternity leave would not have such a negative impact on you.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:16 PM

20. There is no longer any cushion in the middle class economy

The issue is people are treated like serfs not whole human beings.
It doesn’t have to be like that, but the owners want to squeeze every drop they can from a parched middle class.

by the way, the kids that are raised by those parents will be the nurses who take care of you in your old age and the workers funding your social security checks. None of us pay “into”our own accounts, we pay for the older generation, so that we don’t have sidewalks filled with starving elderly.

Look at societies like Japan that has such a low birth rate because it is too expensive to raise kids. There is actually an element of service to society in raising a kid.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 04:48 PM

32. I'd rather be a homeless guy, alone, living in a broken car in a church parking lot than be mean.

And I have.



If you are suffering wage slave work maybe you need a union or something.

It's fucking astonishing to me how the billionaires manipulate us, turn us against one another.





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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 04:49 PM

33. As a childfree person

I wholeheartedly support paid parental leave. The company I work for provides a very good parental leave package for employees of all genders.

The workload is analyzed and fairly distributed amongst co-workers, and contractors are deployed as needed, for the duration of the leave.

Paid parental leave has benefits all around. Maybe I'll get selected to work on some cool initiative, that my leave-taking co-worker would have otherwise been assigned to.

Parental leave is not a vacation. They have nothing to do with each other. It's to allow time for the family to adjust to the changes. It's to allow family time with visiting parents and other relatives (as people are more mobile, this becomes more important). It's a very joyful but very stressful time, and it's not fair to compare it to vacation time.

The main reason why I support paid parental leave is this: When I was a young girl, it was accepted practice that certain colleges and professions could be closed off to women. The Ivies did not admit women until just over 40 years ago. The justification for this was that women got pregnant, and pregnancy and motherhood resulted in elimination from academia and the professional workforce, therefore a waste to admit women. Paid maternity leave means that women can fully participate in society. And paid parental leave means that parenting is a shared task, which is positive evolution.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 09:00 PM

37. They are having kids

Who will pay taxes when you are old. Don’t get too stuck on others getting something and feeling victimized by it. Leave that to the right wingers.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 06:34 AM

10. K&R

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 12:50 PM

24. It's the latest version of "A Thousand Points of Light."

GHW Bush's program was sold as inspirational, give-back-to-community program, when in effect, it was just "Volunteer so that we can get people to do for nothing the things we've been paying social workers, public health nurses, park maintenance crews, etc., to do." It was all a big scam to pay for another goddamn tax cut for the richest Americans. The same goes for using prison labor to do things like pick up roadside trash. Anything to get people to work for free.

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Response to GoCubsGo (Reply #24)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 04:39 PM

31. When I read the article from the OP, I thought of that moment when his son (GWB) said...

...something about how wonderful it was that a woman in the audience was working multiple jobs to make ends meet. Right wing ideology is very, very sick.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 02:21 PM

27. That's the problem with charity

in a way, you enable republicans.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 02:33 PM

28. That's why I never cared for the ending of "It's A Wonderful Life"...

Sure, it’s heartwarming when all the average townspeople pull together to help George Bailey out of his troubles, but they only had to do so because Old Man Potter stole the money his uncle left behind at the bank. Yes, at the end, George is out of trouble, but Potter has still enriched himself (and will continue to be around to oppress the community), and it was the non-rich people of Bedford Falls who had to sacrifice to make up for it.

(The only way that movie would have had a happy ending, IMO, is if it had concluded with the police announcing that Potter had been arrested for Grand Theft, and wouldn’t be troubling the town anymore.)

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Response to regnaD kciN (Reply #28)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 03:16 PM

29. Well, there is the alternative lost ending to the movie...

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 05:21 PM

35. K&R for visibility. nt

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Sat Aug 4, 2018, 09:07 PM

38. 🤯

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