May 13th, 2010
01:16 PM ET
12 years ago

Buffalo needs 'freakin' jobs, billboard tells Obama

(CNN) - "I need a freakin job."

That's the message on a billboard that went up in Buffalo, New York, just in time for President Obama's town hall meeting there Thursday.

On CNN's American Morning, the creator of the billboard, Jeff Baker, said he was inspired to help pay for the eye-catching gimmick because he wanted to "refocus the national dialogue" back to "basic job creation."

When the economy went south, Baker and his brother lost their 10-year-old textile business, which employed 25 people. Their family's woes are reflected throughout the city of Buffalo, which suffers from one of the country's highest poverty rates, with nearly 30 percent of its population living at or below the poverty line. Buffalo's unemployment rate is at 8.6 percent, while the national average is 9.7 percent.

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Filed under: Economy • Jobs • President Obama
soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Karen

    I would really like to see President Obama focus on jobs for Americans! Huge priority!

    May 13, 2010 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  2. Wisconsinite

    You know sometimes I think that if more of the people who are whining about not having a job would just put that energy into really LOOKING for a job instead of complaining . . . .they'd get a 'freakin" job! How much time, energy and MONEY did this guy waste just to get his "message" (gimmick) up on a billboard?? Nobody OWES you a job . . . not even the President! It's like I've always told my kids . . . .if you don't HAVE a job, then your full time job should be LOOKING for a job. But, maybe his thinking is this will lead to a job in creating gimmiky billboards????

    May 13, 2010 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  3. key

    Please get the story straight this business went out of business 15 years ago. And maybe he should use payments he's making for the sign to help his out of work employees.

    May 13, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  4. Jilli

    Have the bakers ever considered moving? There are places in the US that still have opportunities. Buffalo's unemployment rate is below the national average. Time to reassess your life, you can't stand still. Perhaps job retraining – because jobs in many industries won't return. You can't find work there, quit whining and move to where the jobs are or get into another line of work. There are opportunities out there, but complaining and posting ridiculous billboards won't resolve their situation.

    May 13, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |

    I understand the desperation however, how much did it cost to put up this billboard?, enough to go and seek employment in another state. People who need jobs can't pick and choose if they truly want to work, sacrifice and find employment throughout the 52 states if need be. No one likes up-rooting their families but one has to do what one has to do and stope blaming POTUS. Hey there will be plenty of jobs in AZ as a laborer or maybe not since the state is being Boycotted and convention being cancelled left and right (yeah).

    May 13, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  6. Average American

    FYI – wasting money on billboard messages using terms the mean curse words ins't the best way for one to land a job.

    May 13, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  7. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Jobs are in our own backyards, rebuilding and refurbishing our neighborhoods. The money is available and all we need to do is roll up our sleeves, it may not be a desk job, but it's work. Mr. President can't put the job in our laps and no president in the past has either. Get busy.

    May 13, 2010 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  8. Hammerer

    Washington is not interested in jobs for the working class. all they are interested in now is getting reelected so they can gain more power to control your every move.
    The media is now doing a sales job on the fact that jobs are no longer the most pressing need. The cap and trade, healthcare, financial reform, bailouts and handouts, amnesty for illegals and other assorted power grabs, along with reelections, are more pressing at the moment.
    This is the CHANGE you ask for!

    May 13, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  9. Steve- Illinois

    This whole "Main St. Tour" is a sham! What has this administration done to try and create jobs, aside from government jobs???? A "jobs summitt." Whatever happened with that? How about the fact the banks that recieved the biggest bailouts, have loaned the least % of money. Just about every issue this administration pushes, does more to slow the pace of job creation than to help it. Strange way to get out of a recession!

    Common Sense!

    May 13, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  10. Obama the liar

    Who needs a job when you have the stimulus money floating around ?? and if that doesn't work you can apply for that free Obama money-it's all over the world.

    May 13, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  11. Dumbasrocks [R]s

    Where was the billboard 2 years ago, when it should have said:
    "Dear Mr. President, Why am I losing my job?"

    I've got no problem with people reasonably pressuring for an improved economy and more jobs. But let's face it, it took 8 years of repeated [R] failure to drive this country into TWO recessions. It will take some time for the economy to recover from that strongly regressive trend.

    The very same people who happily re-elected the half-wit from Texas and his neo-tard friends half way through that period tend to be the ones who now scream the loudest about the job situation. They should have "screamed" at the polls in 2004, and then they wouldn't even be in this mess now. Let's face it, half of America has the IQ of a large turnip. These are Sarah's "real Amerikans".

    May 13, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  12. Steph

    That would be Dear PRESIDENT Obama. Let me guess, the people who spent money on a billboard begging the government for a job are the same people who support "smaller government". You can't have it both ways.

    May 13, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  13. aproudmemberoftheunpatrioticmob

    Obozo has created plenty of jobs in government and for union executives. He is just lying about any private sector jobs he says he and the corrupt congress have allegedly created with money they stole from real taxpayers.

    May 13, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. charles

    The government isn't going to create the needed jobs... private enterprise can, if only Obama and the Democrats would stop overtaxing businesses which leads to downsizing and sending manufacturing jobs to Mexico.

    May 13, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  15. David

    Republicans – if the private sector creates jobs then why are they addressing this message to Obama?

    May 13, 2010 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  16. David

    His legislation or taxes are not affecting large executive payouts so why should it affect hiring?

    May 13, 2010 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  17. precious

    I am so sorry but it seems that jobs are not on the agenda for now. We must first take care of health, immigation, the environment and taxes. You have to understand that there is not too much interest in jobs because it is not something one can reform, when we are in a transformation process.

    May 13, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  18. jellybeans-fl

    what not enough jobs to be filled by arizona for help!

    May 13, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  19. GI Joe

    We've needed jobs in the US for 20 years. It didn't just start with President Obama.

    8 years Bush and Cheney sent kids to 2 wars (for oil or whatever) - they didn't give us jobs, or health insurance, or anything - just two expensive wars that have us almost broke, and lots of our young folks dead because we need the OIL.

    Why didn't THEY do anything the previous 8 years? Why????

    May 13, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  20. Alex

    People need to start taking responsibility for their own employment stati. My wife and I both got good, private, salaried jobs during this so-called recession because we went back to school and worked backbreaking internships away from home to make ourselves more marketable.

    May 13, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  21. ny

    Buffalo might have 8.6 % unlike the 9.7% fro the rest of the country but the pay scale is almost the lowest in the nation! We're broke here! Noone wants to pay their employees and rhe taxes are sky high! Help us!

    May 13, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  22. stevegee

    Move to Washington, the federal government has been hiring like nobody's business.

    Gee, guess that's what happens when a leftist gets elected president ... private business dries up, bureaucracy blossoms.

    Want a real job people? This November, vote freakin American, vote freakin Republican!

    May 13, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  23. KM

    There are those on the extreme right that say "I don't want the federal government in my everyday affairs, it will lead to the erosion of my freedoms." There is absolutely nothing wrong with this statement except when you come back later and say that when these same people come back later and say "Mr. President, I need a freakin' job."

    The way that I interpret this is that it is okay for the government to help ME because I need it but for the other lazy bums out there, they shouldn't be giving away handouts. WE (Americans) have become so self centered that we forgot what it is like to be compassionate for our fellow citizens and feel that everyone else is trying to "get over."

    I am also of the belief that the President cannot create jobs other than within the federal government so that task has to be left up to private industry. What he can do it propose tax incentives or other incentives for businesses that hire or retain employees in the U.S. Most people have forgotten how laws are made so let's take a condensed history lesson.

    1) A Bill is introduced by a member of Congress
    2) Bill is voted on by either House or Senate
    3) Assuming no reconsiled Bill is needed and the vote is passed, it is sent to the President for signature
    4) President signs into law or vetos the bill
    5) If President vetos the bills, a 2/3 majority in both houses is required to make the Bill law and the President's veto is overriden


    Everything starts with the members of Congress, the President just provides direction for the country.

    May 13, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  24. D.

    ..and so does the entire country!
    Enough with agendas, give us jobs!

    May 13, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |