Bob Marx, neighbor island candidate for Hawai‘i’s Second Congressional District, joined Rachel Thompson for his weekly web address. This week, the pair addressed the disappearing American Dream, the economy, education, and Marx’s candidacy.
Mr. Marx was asked about the stagnant unemployment rate and bleak job forecast for many of his constituents. “I think you have to go forward, sometimes, without knowing for sure what’s going to happen but with faith and confidence in the future,” Marx said. “Even though we are in the middle of some of the most difficult economic times America has ever seen, it’s also a time of tremendous opportunity for people who have good insight…and persistence to press forward in spite of doubt.”
When asked how we can solve the growing employment crisis, Marx said: “It’s easy to say this and difficult to do, but one is to be patient and the other is to stop looking for jobs, and start looking for work…I’ve had like forty jobs, some of the most miserable conditions, and each one of those have made me a better employer and employee for myself,” Marx explained.
In response to a question about how an out-of-work, experienced, middle-aged employee can compete in the changing economy, Marx said that it will be tough since these types of workers expect a lot of compensation. “I think [it’s] a real serious problem…my philosophy is that you make a school available for any age person as cheaply as you possibly can–ideally free…if not it should be a very low tuition,” Marx said.
Marx said that the retraining of many of our middle-aged workers is something that must be available in the digital age in which we now live. Many older workers–once resistant to technology and digital information–now realize that it is inevitable and they must be able to use email and the internet not only to find a new job but to be employable and competitive with younger applicants.
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