Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Massive Unemployment Among High School Graduates Illustrates the Horrible U. S. Recovery

No Mr. Romney, They Cannot All Be Employed by Starting Their Own Private Equity Buyout Companies

If the quality of a nation is in part measured by the quality of life the nation provides for its young adults, the United States surely gets a grade of D minus.  This Forum has already documented how the crushing burden of debt from student loans is impacting not only the former college attendees themselves but the nation as a whole.  Now comes a study from Rutgers University that shows that as bad as it is for college graduates and college dropouts, young men and women who have only finished high school have it much worse.

Carl Van Horn, Ph.D.
Cliff Zukin, Ph.D.
Mark Szeltner
Charley Stone, M.P.P.

The results are summarized by the New York Times which is reporting on the findings of the study.

For this generation of young people, the future looks bleak. Only one in six is working full time. Three out of five live with their parents or other relatives. A large majority — 73 percent — think they need more education to find a successful career, but only half of those say they will definitely enroll in the next few years.

No, they are not the idle youth of Greece or Spain or Egypt. They are the youth of America, the world’s richest country, who do not have college degrees and aren’t getting them anytime soon.

And here is a summary of some of the findings by the Rutgers study.

Looking for a job has proven to be difficult for those who are unemployed. Nearly half
say they have been actively seeking employment for more than six months, and 3
in 10 have been searching for more than a year.

When asked how long they think it will be until they start a new job, fully half were
unable to make a guess. The other half was hopeful they would start a new job within
the year. The uncertainty expressed by respondents about when they would start a
new job may be explained by the fact that more than 8 in 10 have not received a job
offer since they started looking.

This leads to the next set of questions on the Public Policy Quiz for today.  What do do about this?  With Mr. Obama there doesn’t seem to be any plan.  Long term unemployment, whether it is among recent college and high school graduates or from the 55+ group who lost their jobs in the Great Recession and are effectively shut out of a job market whose growth rate is dismal doesn’t seem to be a priority of the administration.  One strongly suspects that they just do not know what to do or how to get any program through a Congress dominated by Republicans that seems determined to block anything that would benefit the American people because it might make Mr. Obama look good.

The opposition, Mr. Romney and the Republicans are even worse.  Their policy prescriptions, essentially more tax cuts for the wealthy and much lower spending on government programs like education, job training and support for the unemployed will make things worse. Exactly how naming China a Currency Manipulator, a key part of Mr. Romney's program and eliminating the $350 million subsidy for public radio will gain a single job for an unemployed high school graduate is left unstated,  for obvious reasons.

Mr. Romney and his fellow Conservatives have often expressed concern that the U. S. will more and more look like the failed states of Europe.  He is correct, if he is elected and Republican policy is put in place huge government deficits and huge unemployment among young people is what the U. S. will face, just like Greece and Spain and Portugal and . . .

1 comment:

  1. Sadly, this post says it all. Just about everything we see going forward will be some form of confirmation of what you wrote here.