War on Youth

Paul Krugman makes the point that rising education costs are strangling the future —

Let’s start with some advice Mitt Romney gave to college students during an appearance last week. After denouncing President Obama’s “divisiveness,” the candidate told his audience, “Take a shot, go for it, take a risk, get the education, borrow money if you have to from your parents, start a business.”

Oh, sure. Go to college. Start a business. Mom and Dad will just lend you the money.

This reminds me of the English twits who withheld aid from Ireland during the Hunger, telling themselves that deprivation would teach the lazy good-for-nothing Irish to take some initiative and learn to work. Really, some of them said that. There’s a good article on British policies during the Irish Famine at the BBC that makes those twits sound just like today’s Republicans.

Krugman points out Mittens’s famous cluelesses, then goes on to point out that getting an education isn’t necessarily helping young people today —

There is, however, a larger issue: even if students do manage, somehow, to “get the education,” which they do all too often by incurring a lot of debt, they’ll be graduating into an economy that doesn’t seem to want them.

You’ve probably heard lots about how workers with college degrees are faring better in this slump than those with only a high school education, which is true. But the story is far less encouraging if you focus not on middle-aged Americans with degrees but on recent graduates. Unemployment among recent graduates has soared; so has part-time work, presumably reflecting the inability of graduates to find full-time jobs. Perhaps most telling, earnings have plunged even among those graduates working full time — a sign that many have been forced to take jobs that make no use of their education.

College graduates, then, are taking it on the chin thanks to the weak economy. And research tells us that the price isn’t temporary: students who graduate into a bad economy never recover the lost ground. Instead, their earnings are depressed for life.

Of course, as Krugman goes on to explain, conservatives are doing everything possible to make the situation worse instead of better. They keep voting to shrink the economy instead of grow it. Nothing I’ve seen recently says “We Are Idiots” more clearly than Club for Growth’s call to vote “no” on student loan subsidies. They should change the name to Club for Stunting.

5 thoughts on “War on Youth

  1. Mom and Dad are tapped out! Mom says she has an affinity with old mother Hubbard.

    The Club for Grow? Isn’t that the one started by Cy Sperling?

  2. You want to improve the economy immediately?
    Close corporate tax loopholes, wipe-out the Bush tax cuts, add a few percentage points to the millionaires taxes, take the trillion dollars that students owe and assign that as national debt to be paid off by the tax increases on the “Non-job Providers.”

    That will act as a mini-stimulus, if a trillion dollars worth of debt, with a ‘promise to pay’ coming from the ones most able to afford it, can be called “mini.”

    Also too: Take the cap off of SS, and add a point or two ABOVE a certain level – for those rich people who’ve avoided paying the same percentage of total income that EVERY working person in the country has been paying for decades.
    Call it “The Payback’s a MF’in Bitch Act.”
    Not only will that help secure people nearing retirement age, but also the kids, who are getting off to late starts on their retirement savings due to debt and low-paying, if any, jobs. Maybe we could even lower the SS retirement, and Medicare eligibiity, ages, if we did that. And, as people retired, THAT would open-up positions for recent HS and college grads to fill – and start paying taxes, and so, into the SS and social safety net programs.

    But that makes too much sense in our, “F*CK you and yours! I’VE GOT MINE!!!” country.

    Oh, and all of you Conservative geniuses – who’s going to be buying houses and cars and TV’s, and everything else you’ll want to sell in the near and distant future?
    How much will the home you live in be worth, when you finally want, or have to, sell it, when there are NO buyers? Penny-wise, pound foolish!

    People ain’t got no f’in money, ’cause they ain’t got no f’in jobs!!!
    Feckin’ Idjit’s!!!

  3. Righteous rant, Cund, righteous. I agree with lowering the retirement age to free up jobs. And don’t cut the benefit for early retirement, either. Yes, it would be expensive but it would open jobs. And get money moving again.

  4. Doing the opposite of whatever the Club for Fungus Growth wants is pretty reliably a good prescription.

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