It Pays More to Not Work

The Weekly Wave Careers Newsletter

January 4th, 2023

This week, a new study suggests that government aid pays more than a job, JOMO replaces FOMO, and Pew Research shares their most striking findings of 2022.

New this Week: Scroll all the way to the bottom to see the exciting new ‘Dad Joke‘ Section.

Don’t forget to Subscribe with your email to get all of this content delivered directly to your email inbox. You can also view previous newsletters from the Deep Dive Careers archives.

Let’s get started.

In the News

Disincentives to Work: A new study from the (Committee to Unleash Prosperity) found that a working spouse would have to earn $50,000 to $80,000 to match the same after tax income as families with 2 unemployed spouses who receive government benefits. The numbers were compiled by measuring the sum of various government assistance programs such as unemployment benefits, Affordable Care Act subsidies and Covid-19 assistance at the federal and state levels and comparing the data across various US states.

In many states, the amount of eligible income from government aid was higher than the median salary, which varies widely from state to state and across different demographic groups. (The Motley Fool)

  • According to the study, the states with the biggest disincentives to work based on the maximum earned income equivalent for two unemployed parents with two dependent minor children are: Washington ($122,653), Massachusetts ($117,063), New Jersey ($108,857)
  • The sates with the lowest are: Mississippi ($37,486), Florida ($43,036), Tennessee ($43,244).

Paid Family Leave comes to New Hampshire: An innovative new plan to provide paid family leave to workers in the Granite State officially went live on New Year’s Day. (NH.Gov)

  • Rather than mandate paid leave, the plan offers the option for eligible employers and employees to opt in.

Pandemic Learning Loss: An estimate from a Stanford University Economist analyzed the recent decline in math and reading test scores of 8th graders. According to the findings, affected students will lose $70,000 in lifetime earnings. (Campus Reform)

  • Although research on students enrolled in higher education is scarce, a series of letters to the editor describe some anecdotal struggles in this population, including some grim details. (New York Times Opinion)

Other News:

Tech Workers Rebound: A survey by ZipRecruiter showed that 79% of recently laid off tech-sector workers regained employment elsewhere within 3 months. (Fox Business)

Striking Findings from 2022: Pew Research Center unveiled its annual list of their most “striking” research findings from 2022.

Their list includes the following:

  1. Americans are increasingly using debt to make everyday purchases.
  2. A growing share of adult TikTok users report that they are also getting their news on the platform.
  3. Surveys show that consumers of news believe journalists should give equal weight to different political persuasions, however US journalists disagree with this premise.
  4. Half of US teens say they use the internet “almost constantly.”
  5. Middle class incomes as a share of overall household income has fallen steadily since 1970.
  6. Republicans and Democrats increasingly describe members of the opposing party with hostile terms like “dishonest, immoral, and closed-minded.

Reflecting on 2022

On a positive note, as the holiday season of giving wraps up, it is best to keep the generosity alive in our spirits through the dark days of winter.

Giving is better than receiving, and the best gift we can give those we care most about is clarity and understanding. In times of much ugliness, being kind to friends, family, and strangers by providing a charitable interpretation of their intentions goes a long way toward building something that human beings crave more than anything: human connection. More on that below.

Quotes to Consider:

“If you spread good all around, you’ll be able to sleep when the sun goes down.”

-Sam Cooke

What I’m Reading

Why Should Anyone be Led by You?: What it Takes to be an Authentic Leader – Gareth Jones and Rob Goffee

  • This book explores examples of prominent leaders and how they used their personalities to inspire others. It also tackles the conflicting priorities of conformity and authenticity.

Articles of the Week:

The New Kids: You can expect these personality traits from the iGeneration and Generation Z. (Laura Stack)

Basketball and Skill Improvement: People get the feedback loop wrong when it comes to skill development. First comes practice, next comes reflection, then the process must repeat. (Issac Morehouse)

JOMO > FOMO: Replace your Fear of Missing Out with the Joy of Missing Out. (Courtney Carver)

Our Wandering Desires: If we’re honest with ourselves, we all crave human connection above all else. So, be authentic. (Ira Israel)

Deep Dive Careers Article of the Week: Failure Immunity: The Vaccine for your Mind

  • Failure has the power to control our minds, but it doesn’t have to. Learn to think about failure constructively and reap the rewards.

Other Fun Stuff

Shockingly, a list of the most frequently mispronounced towns in the US only contained one example from New England. (WHOM Radio Station).

Speaking of New England, the first major winter weather event struck the region recently. People typically struggle with driving in the first storm of the year, however this year, it seemed that people truly forgot the skill. Here are tips for how to navigate the roads when they are covered in snow or ice. (The Art of Manliness)

  • Based on the driving that we saw in the first weather event, following this advice may just save a life.

Dad Joke of the Week:

Since becoming a father last year, I have been inundated with dad jokes. I have been gifted books, a day calendar, and even flash cards. In 2023, I plan to include a dad joke in each newsletter.

Dad jokes may be difficult to define but, ‘you’ll know it when you see it.’

Here is the first dad joke of the year in all its glory:

Dada says:

~ I’m not impressed with the organizers of the New Year’s Eve celebration at Times Square.

They always drop the ball. ~

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