High School Graduation Rates, Out-of-Wedlock Births and Median Family Income

Posted by PITHOCRATES - July 25th, 2013

Politics 101

Colleges use Affirmative Action to Increase Diversity because only 66.1% of Blacks Graduate from High School

Interest rates recently went up for student loans.  Something that greatly angered the left.  Blaming the Republicans for playing politics with our children’s future.  For a college education is the pathway to a good, high-paying job.  A college education is so critical to a person’s future success that everyone should have access to a low-cost student loan.  And because a college education is so important this should not be a privilege of the rich.  Or whites.  Colleges should use affirmative action to ensure a diversity of students.  Because our differences, they say, make us better.

Yes, a college degree is important.  And the data backs this up.  The median family income in 2009 for someone with a bachelor’s degree was $90,530 (see Table 698. Money Income of Families—Distribution by Family Characteristics and Income Level: 2009 posted on census.gov).  Those with only a high school diploma earned $48,637.  While those who didn’t graduate from high school only earned $31,119.  So clearly a college degree is the pathway to a good, high-paying job.  Of course, to get that college degree you first have to enroll into college.  And to do that you need to graduate from high school.  So graduating from high school, then, is the gateway to those good, high-paying jobs.  Which, as it turns out, is the reason we need affirmative action to ensure that diversity of students.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics (see National public high school graduation rate at a four-decade high by Lyndsey Layton posted 1/22/2013 on The Washington Post), not everyone is graduating from high school at the same rate.  Looking at the breakout for three races we find that Asians are graduating 93% of the time.  Whites are graduating 83% of the time.  While blacks are graduating only 66.1% of the time.  Which explains the need of affirmative action admission policies to achieve diversity at our colleges and universities.  For when blacks are only 13% of the population and only 66.1% of them are graduating from high school you’re not going to get a lot of diversity without affirmative action.

Married People with College Degrees have Higher Median Family Incomes than Unmarried High School Dropouts

Going back to the Census data we can see a correlation between these high school graduation rates and median family income.  Those with the highest graduation rate (Asians) earned $75,027.  Those with the next highest graduation rate (whites) earned $62,545.  While those with the lowest graduation rate (blacks) earned $38,409.  Which clearly shows that high school graduates earn more than high school dropouts.  And because Asians and whites have higher high school graduation rates than blacks they have higher median family incomes than blacks.

So we know that to earn a decent income you need a college degree.  And to get that you need a high school diploma.  But is there anything else that has a big influence on a family’s median income?  As it turns out, yes.  Going back to the Census data we see that a family with a married couple earned $71,627.  A male householder with no spouse present earned $41,501.  While a female householder with no spouse present earned only $29,770.

If you want to earn a lot of money, then, the way is clear.  Graduate from high school.  Go on to college and earn a degree.  Then settle down.  Get married.  And raise a family.  A common thread at every stage of this pathway is personal discipline.  Staying in and studying instead of going out and partying.  And once you start working start a family.  For the heavy responsibility of raising children keeps people from staying up late and partying with friends.  Get’s them to work on time in the morning.  And drives them to advance in their careers to provide more for their families.  Things employers like in employees.  Making it easier for these people to climb the career ladder.

The People with the Highest Median Family Income also have the Lowest Out-of-Wedlock Births

A child growing up in a household with a married couple where at least one has a college degree will probably learn the values of his or her parents.  To work hard.  Exercise self-discipline.  And work towards a long-term goal.  Don’t take the easy way.  Don’t take the fun way.  Make sacrifices now that will help you attain your long-term goals.  And it starts with studying and doing your homework.  For a high school diploma is only the first bridge to cross of many to come.  And if you don’t get across that first bridge you will advance no further down the road towards a good, high-paying job.

The family structure, then, is key.  A child needs to learn the values that will let him or her exceed in life.  And a married couple provides twice the parenting of a single-parent household.  And doubles the earnings potential.  By allowing one parent to pursue a full-time career.  Which leads to greater income.  Without having to sacrifice parenting time.  Or risk burning out from trying to do everything alone.  And the numbers prove this.  According to Census data (see Social and Economic Characteristics of Currently Unmarried Women With a Recent Birth: 2011 posted on census.gov), the number of children being born out-of-wedlock differ greatly across the above three racial groups.  Asians have the lowest out-of-wedlock births at 11.3%.  While whites come in at 29.2%.  And blacks come in at 67.8%.

The people with the highest median family income also have the lowest out-of-wedlock births.  Confirming that the path towards a high-paying job is a high school diploma.  A college education.  Being careful NOT to have any children until you’re married.  And after you graduate from college and establish a career get married and raise a family.  In other words, personal discipline.  Sacrificing short-term fun.  For long-term success.  Suggesting the reason why blacks earn a lower family median income than most is because of their high out-of-wedlock birthrate.  Young black women having children before they graduate from high school.  Which prevents them from crossing that first bridge on the road towards a good, high-paying job.  Making her life more difficult.  And giving her children a distinct disadvantage.  At least, based on the Census data.

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Student Loan Payments are Overdue because Universities sold Students Costly Degrees with no Market Value

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 26th, 2013

Week in Review

American companies have difficulty in filling positions requiring strong science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) skills.  So they turn to foreigners.  And the H-1B visas (see H-1B Visas and the STEM Shortage by Jonathan Rothwell and Neil G. Ruiz posted 5/10/2013 on Brookings).  Which means our colleges and universities aren’t producing enough of these STEM graduates.  Instead, what they are producing is a lot of people who can’t get a job.  And probably will never be able to repay their student loan (see Overdue Student Loans Reach Record as U.S. Graduates Seek Jobs by John Hechinger posted 5/23/2013 on Bloomberg).

Overdue student loans reached an all-time high as students struggle to find work after college, according to a government report renewing alarms about the rising burden of higher-education debt.

Eleven percent of student loans were seriously delinquent — at least 90 days past due — in the third quarter of 2012, compared with 6 percent in the first quarter of 2003, according to the report by the U.S. Education Department. Almost 30 percent of 20- to 24-year-olds aren’t employed or in school, the study found.

The research is being released amid concern in Congress and President Barack Obama’s administration about rising college costs and $1 trillion in outstanding student loans, the largest category of consumer debt besides mortgages.

So our colleges and universities pocketed a cool $1 trillion in return for giving our kids degrees that have little market value.  At least 30% of those degrees.  A trillion the U.S. taxpayer will probably end up eating.  Just like they had to eat the subprime mortgage mess.  Which begs the question.  Why are our colleges and universities selling our kids degrees that can’t help them land a job?  And don’t say it’s just the economy.  While the bad economy plays a part it doesn’t explain all those H-1B visas.  What these visas tell us is our colleges and universities are screwing us.  By conning our kids to go into great debt for worthless degrees just to bring hundreds of billions into their campuses.

If anyone bails out this student loan debt it should be those responsible for it.  The ones who sold our kids these worthless degrees.  In fact, in the future, we need to make some kind of eligibility scoring system for student loans.  Based on a survey of who businesses are hiring.  Those they’re hiring most (like those with STEM skills) should be eligible for the greatest student loan amounts at the best interest rates.  Because these graduates are most likely to get a job commensurate with their education.  And will be able to easily repay their student loans.  While those who businesses are hiring least (like those getting degrees in gender studies or drama) should be eligible for the smallest loan amounts and pay the highest interest rates.  Or simply denied any student loans.  Because they will be the least likely to get a job.  And will have the most trouble repaying their loan.

For those who feel they must have these degrees with no current market value to enrich the American tapestry they can still get these degrees.  They just need to pay for them out of pocket.  Or have their parents pay for them.  Which shouldn’t be a problem.  For they can demand colleges and universities lower the tuition costs for these degrees with no current market value.  I mean, why should they be charging so much and put a student into so much debt for a degree that won’t improve his or her economic position.  Which is the ultimate reason we go to college.  So we can earn a bigger paycheck.  Even the drama students dream of going to Hollywood where they can be rich and famous.

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Democrats want to keep Student Loan Interest Rates low so more Students can get Worthless Degrees

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 19th, 2013

Week in Review

A lot of people hate corporations.  Where business people get rich by exploiting the people.  But at least they make something that people willingly buy.  Because it makes them happy.  Like a smartphone.  No.  Corporations are NOT exploiting people to get rich.  But you know who are?  Our universities (see Republicans advance bill to tie student loan rates to markets by Elvina Nawaguna posted 5/16/2013 on Reuters).

Republicans in control of the House Education and the Workforce Committee voted on Thursday to advance legislation tying student loan interest rates to the financial markets, a plan they said would give borrowers a better sense of how much they must repay.

Currently, interest rates on subsidized Stafford loans are set by the government. The rates are due to double on July 1 to 6.8 percent from 3.4 percent, and while lawmakers across the aisle agree that an increase should be averted, they disagree on how to prevent it.

Republicans on the committee rejected amendments by Democrats to maintain the current rates for another two years…

Lawmakers have recently expressed growing concerns about American students’ loan debt, which according to the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau now exceeds $1 trillion. The average student borrower owes about $27,000, and delinquency rates are increasing as new graduates struggle to find jobs…

They’re struggling to get a job because our universities are selling these kids worthless degrees.  “Come to college,” they tell our kids.  “Borrow money.  Don’t worry about that student loan debt.  For you will be able to easily pay it back, buy a house and a new car with your degree in gender studies.”  Or insert any other liberal arts degree that has no market value in a high-tech economy.  An economy so high-tech that these college kids can’t live without their smartphones keeping them connected to Facebook and Twitter.  But these same kids don’t want to learn how to make the next smartphone.  Or write the next ap to run on it.  Because that’s just too hard.  And that’s not what college is about.  College is for having a good time.  Which they can do more often if they’re not burdened down with some complicated math or science degree.

With such high unemployment numbers we shouldn’t be subsidizing anyone to go to college unless they are going to get a degree that has market value in our high-tech economy.  Because a trillion dollars in student loan debt is enough.  Especially when these kids can’t get a job with the worthless degree these universities conned them into buying.  Just to bring more money into the university.  To provide generous pay and benefit packages for their administrators and professors.  While they badmouth the U.S. to their students.  To get them to vote Democrat in the next election.  So they can keep the cheap money spigot open to lure more unsuspecting kids into going deep into debt buying more worthless degrees.

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FT169: “College is more about making Democrat voters than giving students marketable skills.” —Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 10th, 2013

Fundamental Truth

Another Big Reason why College Tuition has been Soaring is because of Public Sector Unions

College tuition is rising.  With increases greater than the rate of inflation.  With some tuition costs growing greater than costs in health care.  There are many reasons for this.  Unlike private sector business colleges cannot produce more with less.  That is, they cannot use productivity gains to educate more students with fewer professors.  Auto manufacturers can use robots to replace people on the assembly line.  Reducing wage, pension and health care costs.  The biggest costs that go into a car.

Universities are big campuses with lots of buildings that basically do one thing.  Sit students down in front of a professor.  This hasn’t change since the first days of higher education.  The only things that have changed are the buildings are a lot nicer.  And university employees all have better pay, pensions and health care than they used to have.  Which is why tuition costs keep rising.  For universities, unlike auto manufacturers, can’t speed up their assembly lines by using robots instead of people.  But it’s not only the auto manufacturers and the universities that have high labor, pension and health care costs.

Another big reason why university tuition has been soaring is because of public sector unions.  Who have negotiated some extremely generous union contracts.  Cities and states everywhere are drowning under the costs of their labor, pension and health care costs.  Forcing them to cut back spending elsewhere to pay for those generous public sector union contracts.  So they’re cutting back on their subsidies for higher education.  And what the state cuts the universities just tack on to the student’s tuition bill.

Universities lure High School Kids into College with Promises of a Big Paycheck for an Easy Degree

Today’s tuition costs will saddle a student with the kind of debt that can pay for a house.  A very big house.  One of those McMansions.  Depending on where you go to college.  Which is all well and fine if a student gets a high-paying job after graduating.  Sadly, though, a lot aren’t.  A lot are taking jobs that they could have gotten out of high school.  Without that massive student loan debt.  Debt they will be paying for a long, long time.  Making it very difficult for them to buy a house and start a family.  And the reason for this is too many students are taking degrees with no market value in a high-tech economy.

Today’s businesses are looking for people with a strong science and math background.  For this is what businesses in a high-tech economy need.  Not people with degrees in anthropology.  Philosophy.  Women’s studies.  Art history.  Comparative literature.  Communication.  Or a myriad of other degrees that a business just can’t use.  Yet our universities are selling these degrees.  Telling their prospective students who don’t want the heavy math load a science and engineering degree requires that these other degrees are just as good.  And that they, too, can have that big paycheck.  Just like engineers and chemists and doctors and physicists.  All they need is a student loan.  And the world can be their oyster.

So these kids starting their adult lives start that life by making one of the worst decisions of their lives.  Because they really want to go to college.  For the fun.  Universities lure these high school kids into higher education.  Appealing to them as adults.  Who can live away from home out from under the judgmental eyes of their parents.  For on a college campus there is a lot of fun to be had.  Sex.  Drugs.  Alcohol.  And health services.  Such as birth control and access to abortion services.  For all the consequence-free fun a high school graduate could ever ask for.  This is the bait.  And all they have to do to have all of that grownup fun is to borrow enormous sums of money that they will probably never be able to pay back.

Liberals say You should Never Rush to Judgment, Especially if we can’t Blame Conservatives

For the universities, though, it’s not just the money.  For their curriculum is the product of those Sixties’ radicals.  Who tried to overthrow capitalism.  And replace it with communism.  As they were never able to incite the workers’ revolt in the United States they changed tack.  And continued their revolution from the inside.  By becoming college professors.  Who eventually got tenure.  And went on to write the curriculum.  Basically an anti-capitalist, America is responsible for all the world’s problems and an anti-religious/anti-tradition curriculum.  Hence the socially liberal campus where anything goes.  And those college degrees that have no market value.  That advanced a relentless attack on capitalism and business.  And made their students eschew American greatness.

This curriculum has helped President Obama win reelection despite a horrific economic record.  And a brutal attack on the American mission in Benghazi.  The result of a failed foreign policy that tried to make nice with America’s enemies.  Who have been trying—and at times succeeding—to kill Americans.  The Fort Hood shooting by a radical Islamist.  The underwear bomber (failed Islamist plot).  The Times Square bomber (failed Islamist plot).  As well as other smaller and lesser known incidents.  Both successful and failed Islamist plots.  Then Benghazi.  And the death of 4 Americans.  Despite earlier witnessing an increase of anti-Western violence in the city.  A resurgent al Qaeda.  And an anniversary date holy to radical Islam.  9/11.  The U.S. mission in Benghazi requested additional security.  The Obama administration denied it as it would not fit the 2012 campaign meme.  ‘Osama bin Laden is dead.  And General Motors is alive.’  President Obama had won the War on Terror with the killing of bin Laden.  Therefore, they couldn’t have a terrorist attack in Benghazi before the 2012 election.  So the Obama administration made up the story about an anti-Islamic YouTube video that led to a spontaneous protest in front of the U.S. mission.  A protest that naturally got out of hand when the people pulled RPGs and mortars out of their pockets and started a military assault on the American compound.

The Obama administration then started to disseminate the lie.  They sent Secretary Rice to the Sunday morning television shows with severely edited talking points to downplay any role of radical Islam.  Then President Obama and Secretary Clinton made numerous public statements denouncing that YouTube video.  Even made a video to air in Pakistan.  And the mainstream media, the product of that anti-capitalist, America is responsible for all the world’s problems and anti-religious/anti-tradition curriculum never questioned anything.  They just dutifully carried the administration’s water.  And now that signs of a cover-up are coming out the administration is saying the only reason why they made any edits to those talking points was to prevent anyone from rushing to judgment.  Something they say we should never do.  Especially if we can’t blame conservatives.  Or Christians.  Like they did with the YouTube video that proved to be a red herring.  And as they—and their friends in the mainstream media—have rushed to judgment in the past.  By quickly blaming radical conservatives for every other massacre.  Only to see it turn out to be someone who wasn’t a conservative.  But a radical Islamist(s) instead.  Or someone suffering from mental illness.

Of course this wouldn’t be possible without higher education.  Where college is more about making Democrat voters than giving students marketable skills.  One could even blame those deaths in Benghazi on that anti-capitalist, America is responsible for all the world’s problems and anti-religious/anti-tradition curriculum.  (As well as being the reason why these kids can’t find any high-paying jobs; the vote for anti-business Democrat candidates whose policies discourage economic growth.)  Because protecting Americans in Benghazi would have been bad for the Democrats in 2012.  So perhaps we should be addressing the high cost of higher education.  And follow the example of the automotive industry.  By producing more graduates with fewer professors.  And put an end to the liberal Shangri la of the college campus.  By replacing the bulk of higher education with online studies.  For if a 15-year old girl can make medical decisions about the morning after pill by reading the contents of the packaging without consulting a doctor or parent then she can get her higher education online.  Without all the fun.  Or student loan debt.

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Employers aren’t hiring College Graduates because of their Worthless Degrees

Posted by PITHOCRATES - April 28th, 2013

Week in Review

Going to college is a special time in a young person’s life.  For it marks their entry into the true world of partying.  Where life on campus is nothing but a party.  And these parties are so good that people actually rank colleges by their partying greatness.  To help students choose the right school for their partying needs.  For no student wants to go to the local community college.  And still live at home.  I mean, what fun is that?

No.  They want to go to another state.  Out from underneath the disapproving eyes of their parents.  Who are more times than not footing the bill.  And no doubt remember what they did while in college.  And sigh.  But they hope and pray that their kids will take some time from their partying to study.  So they can get a good job when they graduate.  Which isn’t easy in a bad economy.  Especially when, it appears, these kids spend more time partying than hitting the books (see Job Picture Looks Bleak for 2013 College Grads by Mark Koba posted 4/26/2013 on CNBC).

NACE [National Association of Colleges and Employers] said employment areas with the greatest demand for this year’s graduates include business, engineering, computer sciences and accounting.

One reason there may not be so many grads hired is that many employers don’t believe college graduates are trained properly.

A survey of 500 hiring managers by recruitment firm Adecco, found that a majority—66 percent— believe new college graduates are not prepared for the workforce after leaving college. Fifty-eight percent said they were not planning to hire entry level graduates this year, and among those managers hiring, 69 percent said they plan to bring on only one or two candidates.

“Too many students are graduating with a weak background in science and math,” said Mauri Ditzler, president of Monmouth College…

A frequent mistake graduates make that keeps them from getting even an interview is spelling…

This is sad.  For you don’t even need to know how to spell to spell well.  For there is a button on all word processors and email editors.  It’s a remarkable button.  If you click on it something magical happens.  It checks your spelling.  Pity our college graduates aren’t learning this in college.  Or that they are just too lazy to click on it.

So what is Mom and Dad getting for all that money they spent sending their kid to college?  Which can be anywhere around $165,000 per kid for a 4-year degree out of state.  In truth few parents can pony up this kind of money.  So students make their way to the financial aid department on campus.  And borrow enough to buy a house.  In exchange for a degree that their college told them will lead to great riches.  And they did that with a straight face.

The reason employers aren’t hiring a lot of college graduates is because of the degrees a lot of them are getting.  And they’re not the hard ones.  For that would get in the way of all their partying.  If you look at the undergraduate degree programs for any college in a warm climate with a good party reputation you will see degrees in academic fields like African-American Studies; American Indian Studies; Anthropology; Art History; Communication; Comparative Literature; French & Francophone Studies; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies; Musicology; Philosophy; Poetry; Women’s Studies.  Etc.  A degree costing a student about $165,000 in student loan debt.  Require little science and math.  And isn’t likely to land you a job interview for someone looking for someone with math and science skills.  Which is who a lot of employers want to hire these days.

These colleges are heaping enormous amounts of debt on our kids.  For a degree that can never earn the kind of money that can pay back that student loan.  And this mounting student loan debt will probably be the last straw that will bankrupt the country.  For it already exceeds a trillion dollars.  And it grows still.  Money that went to these universities and colleges.  Providing generous pay and benefit packages.  And some very nice perks.  Living in the fantasyland of a college campus.  Shielded from the real world.  Some in higher education are acquiring great wealth at the expense of our children.  And the future financial wellbeing of our country.  As our kids will struggle to pay off these loans.  And when they can’t get a job in their field of study they’ll end up taking a job some place they didn’t need that $165,000 degree to get.

This is a tragedy of epic proportions.  Sooner or later government will have to force these colleges to put their money where their mouth is.  To make them accountable.  Before they bankrupt the country.  For anyone paying for college with a student loan they need to enroll only those students who can complete a program with a degree that has true market value.  Who can graduate and get a job with a pay level commensurate with their degree.  If the number of students who can’t falls below, say, 90%, then the college has to start refunding tuition.  For a job poorly done.  It’s only fair.  For they are the only ones who get paid so well for doing such a terrible job.  Giving their graduates degrees with no true market value.

Critics will scream this is not fair.  For we will lose the richness of our culture by not having degree programs in all those other fields that don’t have true market value.  But a degree with no market value is a worthless degree.  And if these worthless degrees are so important to the culture of the country then let the students who want them pay for these degrees with their own money.  And have the college charge less for them if they don’t have true market value.  For if a degree doesn’t have any market value why in the world are they charging $165,000 for them in the first place?

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FT165: “Republicans vote as responsible adults while Democrats vote as selfish children programmed to hate and fear Republicans.” —Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - April 12th, 2013

Fundamental Truth

Our Public Schools teach our Children that Capitalism is Bad and Government is Good

The Democrats want some form of national childcare.  President Obama just said that he wanted 4 year olds in preschool.  Some political operative just made a video saying that we need to destroy the notion that children belong to their parents.  And get people thinking more collectively about their children.  That they belong to the community.  Not to their parents.  So why this push to take children away from their parents and place them into institutions more controlled by the state?  For one reason.  To make them think ‘correctly’.

Our public schools teach our children at an early age about global warming.  Why?  There’s nothing children can do about it.  And it’s likely not man-made.  For the glaciers moved their farthest before man ever put warming emissions into the atmosphere.  So why scare them of an impending global warming apocalypse?  Filling their heads with things to give them nightmares?  Because it is useful to make them fear global warming.  Useful how?  Well, who is it that is supposedly causing global warming?  Businesses.  Corporations.  In general, capitalism.  In particular, unfettered capitalism.  Which teaches children what?  That if left to its own devises unfettered capitalism will destroy the world.  So we need government to act like cops.  To protect these children, their families and the world from these evil and greedy corporations that are trying to kill people with global warming.  Just so they can make a buck.

This is what they’re teaching our children in the public schools.  That unfettered capitalism is unfair.  Cruel.  And will kill us to make a buck.  So our children learn the evils of the profit incentive.  And the goodness of government.  They teach our children how FDR, LBJ and President Obama made the country better.  By preventing the evil corporations from running wild in pursuit of profits.  They don’t teach them how America became the world’s number one economy with the greatest liberty and highest standard of liberty because of unfettered capitalism.  Or why this was the reason people immigrated to the United States.  No.  Instead they teach them to fear corporations.  And support unions.  Because unions like government stop the evil corporations from hurting people to make a buck.  They’ll even hold picket signs for their teachers when they go on strike.  Teachers repeat this lesson over and over again.  Corporations bad.  Capitalism bad.  Unions good.  Government good.  So when they start voting they will vote ‘correctly’.

Someone has to Teach People to have Negative Views of Republicans because they’re not Born with Them

So this is why the Democrats want to take children away from their parents.  So they can start teaching them how to think ‘correctly’.  So they will vote ‘correctly’.  And when our kids get to college they take it up a notch.  Back in the Sixties radicals protested at college campuses.  Protested the Vietnam War.  Wearing shirts with pictures of communist icons like Chairman Mao and Chez Guevara.  They wanted to establish communism in the United States.  They hated the profit-incentive.  And corporate America.  They wanted to abolish private property.  Make everything communal.  They even lived in communes.  Just like the communists they so admired.  Even though the communist utopias in the Soviet Union and The People’s Republic of China oppressed and killed their people if they didn’t think ‘correctly’.

They wanted a world where everyone had whatever they needed without having to work for the man.  So they could spend their days the way they believed people should pass their days.  Getting high, engaging in free love and singing songs about love.  These radicals then changed their tactics.  Instead of fighting the system from the outside they began fighting it from the inside.  By becoming college professors.  Now they are teaching our kids.  And writing the curriculum.  Even those who went to jail for acts of domestic terrorism are joining the faculty at our colleges.  And those who avoided jail on a technicality.  Liberal Democrats revere these people.  And the students they’re programming to become good liberal Democrats love them.  For they, too, want to enjoy a life full of drugs and sex.  They see these radical professors as enlightened.  For they find nothing wrong with enjoying the moment.  Instead of sacrificing for the future.  Like their parents did.  Who always frowned on their having a good time.  Most colleges today lean left.  And the radical Left keeps out the riff raff.  Conservatives.  Who are just too much like these students’ parents.  And bestows tenure on those who think as radically as they do.  While denying it to those who don’t.  Those conservatives.

Conservative students have recorded some of these classes.  Where we can hear liberal professors telling their captive audience that Republicans are all racist white men.  And are the most inflexible in their thinking.  Stubborn.  And mean spirited.  That they hate minorities, the poor and women.  Even want to prevent them from voting.  They want to put blacks back at the back of the bus.  And women back into the Fifties where they’re barefoot and pregnant.  Are these isolated incidents?  Or is this what they teach all of our children?  Well, if you watch the Daily Show, Saturday Night Live, most any television sitcom, most any Hollywood movie or watch the network news you have to believe this teaching is pervasive.  As no one is born with political views someone had to teach these people to have these negative views of Republicans.  And who teaches our kids?  Our public schools.  And our colleges.

Liberal Democrats don’t Engage in Debate but Instead Lie and Launch Personal Attacks

The liberal viewpoint is a minority viewpoint.  Only about 21% of the people identify themselves as liberal.  While 35% identify themselves as moderate.  And 40% identify themselves as conservative (see Conservatives Remain the Largest Ideological Group in U.S. on Gallup).  So those wishing to implement a liberal agenda have their work cut out for them.  Because about 75% of the people don’t think like they do.  That is, not yet.

This is why the president wants to get 4 year olds into state-paid childcare.  And why liberals want to take our children away so the state can raise them.  So the liberals can get them while they’re young.  And diminish the influence of their parents.  Especially when those parents are conservatives.  Who resist the liberal indoctrination of their children.  And undo some of the hard work they’ve done in getting these children to think ‘correctly’.  Which is a big problem for liberal Democrats.  Because they can’t win on the merits of their policies.  Not when 75% of the people don’t think like they do.

So liberal Democrats teach our kids to fear and hate those who don’t think like they do.  And they mock, belittle, disparage, demean, deride, etc., these people who don’t think like they do.  They don’t engage in debate.  They lie.  And launch personal attacks.  Which our high school and college kids find so entertaining.  They fill the audience at the Daily Show and the Late Show with David Lettermen.  They may not understand the issues.  But they know that they should laugh.  And how they should vote.  For they know that corporations are bad.  Capitalism is bad.  While unions are good.  And government is good.  The cool people they admire so much are liberal Democrats.  So they, too, are liberal Democrats.  And until they learn from age and experience to vote like adults they will continue to vote as self-indulgent children.  Living to maximize the pleasure of the moment.  No matter the long-term consequence of their actions.

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Thanks to a Horrible Economy a lot of Starbucks Baristas have a BA Degree

Posted by PITHOCRATES - March 30th, 2013

Week in Review

President Obama is always talking about sending more kids to college.  And investing into the future.  But as it turns out a lot of kids are going to college.  Taking on enormous amounts of student loan debt.  But they’re not graduating with a useful degree that they can use to help build that future (see Why a BA is Now a Ticket to A Job in a Coffee Shop by Megan McArdle posted 3/27/2013 on The Daily Beast).

Too many college kids are living in Mom’s basement, or working at Starbucks…A while back, I found myself talking to a professor whose school has a number of impressive-sounding graduate programs that were originally conceived as add-ons for a professional degree in law or medicine or business.  They are now attracting a number of students who just go for the standalone degree.  He didn’t understand what the career path was for these kids, and he wasn’t sure that they did either.

“It sounds good, so they can persuade their parents to pay for it,” he said, a touch guiltily…

Skilled workers with higher degrees are increasingly ending up in lower-skilled jobs that don’t really require a degree–and in the process, they’re pushing unskilled workers out of the labor force altogether…

I made quite a splash with a Newsweek story arguing that we may be overinvesting in college.  There were basically three parts to this argument: first, that a lot of college attendance is signalling activity rather than skill acquisition; second, that more students with BAs are ending up in jobs that don’t require them; and third, that a substantial number of kids don’t finish, washing out with a lot of debt and no commensurate earning power to pay it…

So while college graduates are having trouble getting college-style jobs, the unskilled workers are doing even worse.  This is not necessarily evidence that the college degree is producing the wage–it might be that folks capable of getting into college would be able to get that barista job even if they didn’t go…

It suggests that we’re pushing more and more people into (more and more expensive) college programs, even as the number of jobs in which they can use those skills has declined.  A growing number of students may be in a credentialling arms race to gain access to routine service jobs.  Or maybe the productivity of our nation’s wait staff is spiking as more skilled workers flood into these jobs.

Unfortunately, there’s no obvious policy response to this.  It’s easier to create more college educated workers through government policy than it is to create jobs for them.  It’s not even obvious what the personal response should be–except that if you’re planning to major in English, you should maybe see if you can’t get a job at Starbucks instead.

A lot of kids go to college for the fun.  And because it’s the fun that they care about they take the easy degree programs.  Like English.  Because studying physics, engineering, medicine, etc., would just take too much time away from having a good time.  This is why they can’t get a job with their degree.  Because their degree is useless in the high-tech future that the president says we must invest in.

This is why the high-tech companies are hiring Asians and Indians.  Because they study hard in school.  Getting degrees in the hard programs.  Because they grow up with the values of their parents.  They work hard and are willing to wait to enjoy the fruits of all their labors.  Unlike American kids that can’t wait for anything.  Especially when it comes to having a good time.

When the economy is booming again and good workers are hard to find businesses will be hiring people with BAs again.  Maybe even those people earning degrees in economics.  Like those who are advising the government on how to create jobs.  But until the economy recovers from the worst recession since the Great Depression they will only hire those with the more valuable degrees.  The useful degrees.  The degrees that can actually help bring their goods and service to market.  And if their business is developing new hardware for the Internet or communication satellites knowing what a split infinitive just isn’t a useful skill.

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Foolish Majors and Bad Economic Policies lead to High Unemployment among Recent College Graduates

Posted by PITHOCRATES - February 9th, 2013

Week in Review

Going to college is very expensive.  In fact, tuition costs seem to rise as much as health care cost yet no one blames the colleges and universities for being profit whores.  Odd.  No one ever complains about the high cost of education.  Unless they’re attacking Republicans for not approving more spending to help subsidize what these profit whores at our colleges and universities are charging our students.  Worse, these profit whores are selling a lot of worthless degrees to these unsuspecting students (see Four Foolish Majors To Avoid by Terence Loose posted 2/7/2013 on Yahoo! Education).

Opportunity Killer #1: Liberal Arts

Unemployment Rate for Recent College Graduates: 9.2 percent*

“I don’t think the majority of [liberal arts grads] are going to be employable because they don’t come out of those degrees with any marketable skills,” says Heathfield. “But even worse than that, they spend the money to go four years to college and then get a job that pays $30,000 a year with no upward prospects.”

Opportunity Killer #2: Philosophy and Religious Studies

Unemployment Rate for Recent College Graduates: 10.8 percent*

Can you remember the last time you saw a “Wanted” ad that said: “Looking for a really smart person who can solve why I exist”? Neither can we – and we’re guessing even Plato could recognize the need for practical skills. It seems like today’s employers certainly do, too.

Opportunity Killer #3: Information Systems

Unemployment Rate for Recent College Graduates: 11.7 percent*

Quick, what exactly do information systems majors study? Not sure? Neither are most employers, says Heathfield. That’s not to say this degree doesn’t build good skills; it’s just that if you’re interested in computer technology, it’s best to earn a degree that is easily understood, like a bachelor’s in computer science or computer engineering, says Heathfield.

Opportunity Killer #4: Architecture

Unemployment Rate for Recent College Graduates: 13.9 percent*

There are few things as inspirational as a beautiful building or home. That said, thanks to the massive hit the housing and commercial real estate industries took in the past decade, this degree may not lead to a good job outlook.

Apart from architecture what do these degrees have in common?  They don’t have a lot of math or science in them.  That is, they’re easier than, say, degrees in electrical engineering or theoretical physics.  Could this play a part in why students choose these degrees?  These kids who are going away from home for the first time.  To a raucous college campus.  Where there is booze, drugs and sex.  You know, they even rate colleges by their party index.  So, yes, kids choose easy degrees so they can go to college and party.  Where they can enjoy booze, drugs and sex away from the disapproving glare of their parents.  Even earn a starring role in a Girls Gone Wild video when they take the partying up a notch on spring break.

So when students protest in an Occupy Wall Street movement because they can’t get a job this is why.  A lot of them have degrees in these foolish majors.  Which on top of President Obama’s economic policies is not a recipe for gainful employment.  But these kids will have those great college memories.  Which they will be reminded of.  Every time they can’t make a payment on that colossal student loan debt that those good times cost them.

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FT156: “Government needs to help us make the right decisions because we can’t…unless we’re a teen girl choosing an abortion.” —Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - February 8th, 2013

Fundamental Truth

We don’t adapt to Our Environment we adapt our Environment to Our Needs

In the springs birds mate.  The female lays eggs.  She sits on them in the nest to keep them warm.  When they hatch she feeds her babies.  The mother chases away predators that get too close to her babies.  She teaches them to fly.  And then boots them out of the nest.  Where they go off to become adult birds.  Then the mother does it all again next spring.

Birds are very smart at being birds.  And the skills they need a mother can teach her offspring in a few months.  It’s not quite the same with human offspring.  Who receive more parenting than any other animal on the planet.  For humans need about 20 years to reach full size.  And even longer to gain full maturity.  And knowledge.  Taking 12 years of public education.  Then a trade school.  Or college.  And real life experience.  Years of knowledge and experience before they can leave the nest

Birds live in their environment.  And adapt to it.  Whereas humans are far more intelligent.  We’re able to think.  And use tools.  We have grown wiser over time.  Such that we don’t adapt to our environment.  We adapt our environment to our needs.  We mastered fire.  Built shelter.  Made clothing.  We learned how to farm.  And how to domesticate animals.  We created tools.  And built machines.  Simple machines like levers and wheels.  And advanced machines like airplanes and computers.  Advancing our quality of life.  We lived longer.  And healthier.  Things birds haven’t done.  Which is why they can raise their offspring to adulthood in a few months.

At our High School Graduation we Probably Know only Half of what we will Learn in Life

Some people mature quicker.  Some gain knowledge faster than others.  Some people keep learning new knowledge.  While some specialize in one area of knowledge.  Like a skilled trade.  Or medicine.  And while focusing on mastering these areas of knowledge they may spend less time learning other things.  Like history.  Or economics.  It is a complex world.  Where highly learned and skilled people do remarkable things.  But it takes time to learn the knowledge and skills to do these remarkable things.  And there is always more knowledge to learn.  No matter how learned and skilled we become.

There is a learning curve.  We’re born with a blank slate.  We learn a lot when young.  How to eat.  Drink.  Go potty.  Dress ourselves.  Tie our shoes.  Recite the alphabet.  To talk.  To obey.  Learning the consequences of our actions.  Things to help us in school.  Where we learn the three Rs.  Reading, ‘riting and ‘rithmetic.  And how to think critically.  To solve problems.  To manage a household.  We learn history.  And rudimentary economics.  To help us live in the real world.  After we leave the nest.  Some of us get a job out of high school.  Some go to a trade school.  While others go on to college.  Or serve in the military.  And even after we’ve left the nest we still have a lot to learn.  And lot of experience to gain.  Which is why we go to trade school and college.  And the military.  To keep acquiring knowledge.  If we graphed this learning curve it would look something like this.

Average Knowledge

Note that the learning curve is steep in our youth.  Before school our parents teach us everything they can.  Then we continue our education in school.  By the time we graduate from high school our learning curve begins to flatten out a little.  As we may be settling on a career path.  And focusing on the education for that career.  But even at our high school graduation we probably know only half of what we will learn in life.  Either from further education.  Or real world experience.  Also, few of us acquire all the knowledge we have the potential to learn.  Which is why the learning curve flattens out in the 70% range.  No one can learn everything there is to learn.  But everyone can learn the maximum they have the potential to learn.  Sadly, a lot of this forgone learning is history and economics.  The kind of knowledge that makes a person less susceptible to a politician’s lies.  Explaining why so many bad politicians win elections.  And why they pass so many bad policies into law.

Young Liberals who still have so much to Learn vote as if they Know Everything

The learning curve flattens out in our twenties.  And even more in our thirties.  With our formal education complete we gain knowledge through experience.  And from studying things that interest us.  For our own enjoyment.  Or to help us make better decisions.  We read newspapers.  Watch the news on television.  Listen to AM radio.  In our forties we are well established in our careers.  And have long given up the idealism and childish pursuits of our youth.  As we are raising our own children.  Who are beginning to think they know everything.  Who don’t want to listen to their old and out of touch parents any longer.

By our fifties we have lived a long life.  And have seen a lot.  We’ve heard the same political arguments through the years.  And no longer fall for them.  We come to learn that our parents were right about a lot of things after all.  We become more conservative in our old age.  Because we’ve seen what works.  And what doesn’t.   Often times it’s always the things that are less fun that are best for us.  Of course trying to explain that to our children who know even more after earning a degree from a liberal college is next to impossible.  So we accept that they, too, will have to learn this as they raise their own family.  And get wise with age.  Like we did.

The Left labels conservatives as a bunch of old people living in the past.  Out of touch with the modern world.  Something young liberals want no part of.  So they naturally gravitate towards the Democrat Party.  These young people who still have so much to learn.  Who vote as if they know everything.  The fact that the Democrats win elections based in large part on the youth vote says a lot about the Democrat Party.  For they are the party of the uninformed voter.  Which the Democrat Party acknowledges by expanding the role of government into our private lives.  Because left to our own devices the Left believes that we won’t make good decisions.  Unless, that is, we’re a teenage girl choosing to have an abortion.  Then she is wise and knowledgeable beyond her years.

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Useless College Degrees leave Graduates with Massive Debt and Unmarketable Skills

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 16th, 2012

Week in Review

The Left wants to provide free college education for everyone.  They’ve even taken over the student loan program.  And talk about making more funding available to states to help kids afford the one thing that grows more costly than health care.   And kids are going to college in record numbers.  And when many of these kids graduate they can’t find a job.  Why?  Because they’re getting useless degrees for that massive student loan debt the government encouraged them to borrow.  Degrees requiring little math or science (see Don’t Bother Earning These Five Degrees by Terence Loose posted 12/13/2012 on Yahoo! Education).

Unwanted Degree #1 – Architecture

Unwanted Degree #2 – Philosophy or Religious Studies

Unwanted Degree #3 – Anthropology or Archeology

Unwanted Degree #4 – Area Ethnic or Civilization Studies

Unwanted Degrees #5 – Information Systems

Architecture does require some math.  And it’s not that easy.  But it’s on the list because of the government’s massive real estate bubble that exploded into the subprime mortgage crisis.  The whole construction industry being in the toilet because of the government’s pressure to qualify the unqualified for mortgages.

Every other unwanted degree on the list is a worthless degree.  None of them have any market value in a high-tech economy.  Not one of them will build a better iPad.  A better smartphone battery.  Or find a new miracle drug that will help ease the cost of our aging population.  So why do kids get degrees in these fields?  Because their workloads are lighter than in degree programs that require math and science.  Leaving more time for having fun the first time these kids are out from under their parent’s supervision.

The Left wants to help these kids with degrees that won’t get them a job.  By forgiving their debt.  Which is probably the worst thing that we can do.  The colleges who gave them these degrees should refund their tuition for selling them a defective product.  The American people shouldn’t pick up the tab just so college professors and administrators can earn large salaries and generous benefits.  Especially when they are teaching our kids an anti-capitalist curriculum.  Which is primarily responsible for the anti-business climate in this country today.  Giving us our high unemployment rates in the first place.

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