I won't disagree with you , but it begs the question whos fault is this? My take it is us and not the govt. Your post is a sad commentary of the social state of the US. That is why I like living in smaller towns where we do know our neighbors and help each other.So I'm going to disagree with you here. People don't take care of each other any more and the reason is because there's no sense of community. In the long ago past, people knew each other and helped each other because they were part of their society. They met in churches, at schools, etc. The people in the community worked for a company that was in the city or town and the employees spoke and socialized with their managers and the owners of the companies. Things were done face to face. Today in comparison, more and more people reject the church. They spend more time online emailing or texting than on the phone or face to face. Many of us email each other when we sit no further than 6 feet away. Schools are larger, regionalized - kids are a name in a database. People are a name in a database and there is no personality or community any longer. Sure we might get all up in arms about some new tax and all show up at the town hall to complain but we're not connected like we were in the past. We're DISCONNECTED and so we don't take care of each other through the churches or charities.... because of that fact many (especially our liberal friends) see the gap and state that government must step in and take over. The same way government must step in everywhere.
So what we're left with is a government that can't tie it's own shoes without spending billion of tax dollars and decades of passing new laws about the shoes and types of shoelaces which can be used, who then starts to take over general societal functions where people have decided they don't want to do it any longer or are not interested. The 99 weeks issue is indicative of this --- people who are unemployed who made 75K at their last job don't want to take a job for 40K. Why? The reason is if they take that job and need to leave, their new unemployment check is reflective of their last job which was 40K, not 75K so they get less money - so they don't want to take that job, especially if it's just something to tide them over. They'd rather sit it out for 99 weeks - the down side to that is once they're out for that long, it's even MORE difficult to get a job. The only time it works is if the person doesn't give a squirt about the unemployment and they want to work and do whatever is necessary to feed their family. More and more people would rather sit on their couch and eat cheetos, email in their online claim form that they submitted for 10 jobs this week, and collect their paycheck. It's sad that the extension of unemployment which has the best of intentions, actually drives the wrong behavior and teaches people the wrong message which is: Stay home, collect until it runs out, and don't take a job for less money than you were making or you'll get penalized if they lay you off again.