2015-06-10

And You Have a Bachelors in....?

In a recent article by Thomas Friedman (http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/06/10/opinion/thomas-friedman-how-to-beat-the-bots.html), he argues that we need a better way of connecting those of "middle skills" with positions in companies that have work to do.

Those with "middle skills" are those defined as having spent a good part of their career doing jobs for which bachelors degress (B.S., B.A.,B.etc...) are required to even be interviewed.  So if these 'uneducated' folk for some reason find themselves out of a job due to a 'bubble' in the economy, they are going to have a damn hard time finding their way back into the same work at the same pay rate.

This is a cute little 'side effect' of these economic downturns we experience.  Busisness can say; "Oh my God! We have to cut costs! We have to reduce the work force.  Sorry, thanks for the service and all, but we can't afford you now".

Subsequently, they re-define the 'job description' and add the requirement that a Bachelors Degree be in the pocket of those who might apply, disqualifying those who had been doing the job previously.  So they get some bright educated individual who carries a boat load of debt to do the same job the uneducated shmuck did previously at the same price, except now they have someone who is afraid to make a move because getting a job with benefits is what you hang on to; and can you risk not being able to pay that loan off?

Looking at jobs(which I do often), I am finding that those requiring a B.A. or B.S. are a joke.  If it takes a B.S. to proofread high school text books, then our education system is truly failing.

The complaint that the middle class is shrinking is very valid.  The numbers show it.  But think of the expectations laid on the middle class, that group is expected to:
  • Pay their student loans (two if married) 
  •   Save for retirement 
  •  Save for the kids college tuition
  •  Own a home(just ask Bush or Reagan...67% should anyway) 
  •  Buy vehicles that get them to work and back and the kids to whatever. 
  •  Maintain insurance on all of the above
Yeah, right!  All while starting out with $40k to over $100k worth of student loans?

 The problem is not robots taking our jobs; The problem is that we are expected to buy our way into a job.  And the cute little setup between the government, the universities/colleges and business is that even if you pay all the prices, you are still nothing but a commodity.

I think it is time the middle class took a break for a week or two:  You know, just call in and say; "I need to think about what I am really worth.  It is going to take a couple of weeks.  Will give you a call when I figure out why the CEO and the CFO and the CTO make several hundred times more than I do, when they have the same B.S./Masters that I do".

I wonder what industry would do?  Hire illegal immigrants?  How much do you want to bet immigration policy would be turned on its head overnght?
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