Kids are going to school to study the arts, humanities, and liberal arts. They graduate with a ton of student debt, but end up with meager jobs, low pay, and often not in something in the field they studied for. They too often have to involve themselves in the gig economy or hustle culture to make ends meet.
I think the monies used for student loans should no longer go towards ”liberal arts” colleges and instead only be funneled to trade schools, vocational centers, polytechnical schools. The jobs we need in this country aren’t for artists, editors, and other ”content creators”—there are good paying jobs in industry, warehousing, manufacturing, engineering, the sciences, and other STEM fields.
Sure, go ahead and “follow your passion”—but stop complaining that it’s not paying well, or that benefits suck, or that we as a culture don’t ”value the arts”. ”Selling out” isn’t the devil; it means providing for yourself if not your family.
For those of us without the college or other post-secondary education, that means bringing back factory and warehouse work. Tell companies that outsourced all their manufacturing to India, China, and Vietnam to bring back those jobs, or otherwise they will be shut down, fined to the point it runs them into bankruptcy and closure, their higher-ups jailed for tax evasion and income fraud. No ”tax incentives”—either bring back the jobs, or they get shut down.
If we can manufacture cars to sell overseas, we can manufacture everything here to sell here.
Sure, the work is ”mind-numbing”, highly repetitive, and whatever, but these kinds of jobs are what made the USA a powerhouse until the 70s and 80s, when they were sent overseas—these jobs now allow India and China to be major world powers instead, as we fall. These jobs provide the wages and job growth our country so badly needs right now—as an alternative to retail, they are great to have in the event we suffer from another pandemic, as people work spaciously apart, there’s no dealing constantly with customers and potentially catching something. Wages and benefits are generally good, scheduling is usually full-time and consistent (even if you get stuck with the night shift, which usually pays even more!). They are usually lower-stressed compared to almost any retail job. Factories today are also big on following OSHA and state safety regulations, even sometimes going above even those requirements.
The COVID pandemic showed us that globalization was both a big lie and a big mistake. We are always suffering from ”supply chain issues” now—now just with the food and goods you see at the stores, but in manufacturing, business-to-business dealings, and other areas the average American doesn’t see or think about. Growing all our own food—and use it for human consumption, as opposed to supply junk food and animal feed—will improve food security. Clothes manufacturing may raise prices, but the quality will improve and reduce fast fashion pollution. We are already dropping $1000+ on our phones and other personal tech, so manufacturing other electronics wouldn’t raise prices so much to shun buyers. All this can happen because we also will have jobs that provide much better paychecks, which will increase discretionary spending, and allow Americans to buy those ”higher-priced” goods and services.
Bring back manufacturing and industry. Fund post-secondary education that provides students with skillsets are country actually needs. Consumers will not scoff at raised prices, as their paychecks will much higher and allow them to spend on those goods. Everyone wins.