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Thomas Friedman: The New Untouchables ("You're just not that GREAT! You have to be SUPERworkers!") [View All]

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HughBeaumont Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-21-09 02:57 PM
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Thomas Friedman: The New Untouchables ("You're just not that GREAT! You have to be SUPERworkers!")
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http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/21/opinion/21friedman.html?_r=1&em

Yet another line of massive claptrap from the laissez-failure's favorite mouthpiece.

Our education failure is the largest contributing factor to the decline of the American workers global competitiveness, particularly at the middle and bottom ranges, argued Martin, a former global executive with PepsiCo and Kraft Europe and now an international investor. This loss of competitiveness has weakened the American workers production of wealth, precisely when technology brought global competition much closer to home. So over a decade, American workers have maintained their standard of living by borrowing and overconsuming vis--vis their real income. When the Great Recession wiped out all the credit and asset bubbles that made that overconsumption possible, it left too many American workers not only deeper in debt than ever, but out of a job and lacking the skills to compete globally.

This problem will be reversed only when the decline in worker competitiveness reverses when we create enough new jobs and educated workers that are worth, say, $40-an-hour compared with the global alternatives. If we dont, theres no telling how jobless this recovery will be.

snip

As the Harvard University labor expert Lawrence Katz explains it: If you think about the labor market today, the top half of the college market, those with the high-end analytical and problem-solving skills who can compete on the world market or game the financial system or deal with new government regulations, have done great. But the bottom half of the top, those engineers and programmers working on more routine tasks and not actively engaged in developing new ideas or recombining existing technologies or thinking about what new customers want, have done poorly. Theyve been much more exposed to global competitors that make them easily substitutable.

snip

Just being an average accountant, lawyer, contractor or assembly-line worker is not the ticket it used to be. As Daniel Pink, the author of A Whole New Mind, puts it: In a world in which more and more average work can be done by a computer, robot or talented foreigner faster, cheaper and just as well, vanilla doesnt cut it anymore. Its all about what chocolate sauce, whipped cream and cherry you can put on top. So our schools have a doubly hard task now not just improving reading, writing and arithmetic but entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity.



I see. So what I'm reading is that our workers are at fault for the failings of our corporate leaders because they aren't ALL mega-IQ geniuses?

So the solution is for all of us to be innovative, creative and HARDER WORKING superbees?

So that whole "not wanting to work for wages that will put me under a bridge" thing or that "college isn't subsidized here" thing or that "Republican governments would rather spend money on war than education" thing or that "wages haven't kept up with the cost of living" thing has nothing at all to do with the ratshit pile that American workers are currently in?

No, it's because we don't work HARD enough.

:eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes: :eyes:

I don't know what's worse, that this guy gets a column, or that there are DUers who are inevitably going to agree with him.

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