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Originally published November 17 2015

The new American economy: Online BEGGING

by J. D. Heyes

(NaturalNews) The Obama economy continues to "fundamentally transform" the concept of employment. Seven years into his disastrous presidency, the "economy" is defined as one of government dependency and non-participation, with a record 46.7 million Americans living in poverty (9.4 million more than before the 2007–2008 financial crisis), and with a record 94.6 million out of the labor force altogether.

Now, as The New York Times has reported, there has been a surge in the need for "help" – and much of it has come from social media in the form of an epidemic that smacks of anything but providing for those truly in "need."

In fact, one man whose email boxes have been increasingly filled with monetary requests has a theory – "I think online begging has become the new economy."

That's what crime writer Mark Ebner thinks, anyway. And by all observations, he has a point.

"I woke up to four new people today asking me for money on four different donation platforms," one friend told NYT writer Judith Newman. "One was my ex-babysitter announcing her wedding and where I could send cash. No invitation to the wedding. Just cash."

'Can you pay for my mom's funeral?'

"I'm a believer in giving to real charities: medical research, school drives, the Red Cross, et cetera," added Heidi Knodle, owner of a picture framing store in San Francisco, as reported by the NYT. "I'm tired of people asking for a vacation, funds for a wedding or their college tuition."

There are, of course, legitimate online funding efforts, as Newman further notes:

A visit to GoFundMe or YouCaring yields site after site of people whose homes were wiped out by natural disasters. People with diseases I'd never heard of, with no insurance and staggering medical expenses. Kids trying to pay for their parents' funerals. Parents with seriously ill children wanting a trip to Disney World, and sick animals owned by people who couldn't afford the vet bills.

One man had set up a fund for a friend who needed to take a couple of months off while his wife died of brain cancer.

But there are so many other examples of people who are asking others to pay for everything and anything:

-- Folks with diseases no one has even heard of are asking for "funding" to help pay for staggering medical expenses (allegedly they have no insurance though by law everyone is supposed to);

-- children are asking for strangers to help pay for their parents' funerals;

-- parents with children who are seriously ill wanting others to help fund trips to amusement parks like Disney World; and

-- owners of sick animals asking for donations to pay vet bills, and so on.

As the Times noted, one man established a fund for a friend who wanted to take a couple of months off work as his wife slowly died from brain cancer.

Body image, 'history of shacks'

And, as Newman noted further:

Education funds are great, but do I really want to pay for a friend to travel to Peru to become a shaman?

Should the woman who has lost a lot of weight (good for you!) ask her friends to pay for $2,500 worth of laser skin tightening? What about the girl seeking $600 for her "personal development journey"? (Not much to ask, but she was so beautiful, I didn't understand why she didn't develop herself into a model and make a whole lot more than that.)

There were still others, like a sponsorship for a child's figure skating lessons from a mother who, according to someone who was receiving daily reminders to donate, just renovated her kitchen.

Someone wanted money for a power generator for a man in Brooklyn who holds parties for artists, writers and musicians in a backyard shack, who claimed he was doing a project for "the history of shacks."

And so on – like the woman who is asking for $20,000 for plastic surgery because she had children early and now she "struggles with body image issues."

So many causes, you'd have to be the Monopoly Man (with real money) to pay for them all. But in today's "economy," welcome to the new social norm.


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