Re: ECON: Lack of skilled people in the USA

From: Randy Smith (
Date: Tue Jan 30 2001 - 22:18:58 MST

>Why would you think libertarians should be utterly unconcerned with
>people's education and skills? We're not all heartless SOBs you know.
>Besides, on a purely selfish and pragmatic basis it matters a great deal to
>me that people are skilled enough to power the economy forward. Who

Sorry, but that sounds like an empty catchphrase to me.

BTW< I don't find anything selfish about not caring whether X% of the
populace cannot pass some meaningless math test; if they need to know it,
they'll learn it. Most science PhD's have a problem finding a job.

>do you
>think are going to create all those technological and scientific
>breakthroughs? (I'd add: without better critical and creative thinking
>skills, who is going to understand the possibilities and adapt their
>thinking to them?)

To quote from the article:

"it tested 57,000 job applicants in 1987 and found that 54,900, or 96.3%
lacked basic skills in math, reading, and reasoning."(35) A human resource
planning document prepared at the Bank of America in 1990 reported that
"Chemical Bank in New York must interview 40 applicants to find one who can
be successfully trained as a teller";

Guess all those tellers are going to make these scientific breakthroughs--if
only they could learn their kitchen math, and pass a reading comp test!

To put it bluntly, I think the "studies" quoted in the article are
massaged/made-up to make a point and thereby further
corporate/political/interest-group agendas. Propaganda, bought and paid for.
A media cliche, meaningless.

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