When I was at school kids of my grandson’s age would be leaving about this time next year and going into work of some kind. He has at least two years to go. I know the economy has changed under the charge of international banksterism, but when I was young kids like my grandson went into real work. Now, with far more of them equipped with academic qualifications, vast numbers are unemployed or on schemes of some sort we know are mostly rot.
My lad has some disability and though he isn’t thick, struggles with work around the house – from hoovering to wiring a plug. We’re getting him a new computer table tomorrow and he will struggle to put the flat-pack together – indeed he will try and avoid the task completely. He is, in fact, work-shy, though the disability is connected with this. All this makes him like his mates rather than unlike them.
If dealing with unemployment was genuinely about giving people the right training we would surely have identified the skills and be producing people with them. The identification of training needs and training evaluation is one of my skills. I’d say we have made a complete mess of it. The essential mistake is assuming that most people can learn work skills other than through doing the work. Indeed, I believe education barely works at all except as child-minding and this has expanded into the universities.
The answer is to stop all the scheme nonsense and pretending education can or should produce the skills employers want. We need instead to guarantee and provide jobs. We are failed in this entirely by the employers and our economic thinking. We need to fit the jobs to the unemployed not try the silk purses from sows’ ears approach. And we need to admit all we’ve been doing is importing better workers from abroad.
I’d go for an international service programme for all our kids from 14 – 21 and all unemployed across the EU (as far across the developed world as possible). This would include time-release to colleges and all concerned would be affiliated to a university from 16 whether they attended as students or not. I’d like to see this programme be a safety beyond which no one could fall without making that a choice, and welfare would not be a standard alternative.
Our economies can’t recover without doing something about flat-lined and decreasing wages – we have made the bottom half of our societies so illiquid we have begun to destroy our markets in the real economy. We need to make our employers compete for the workers they want – they always claim to be smart, innovative and the rest afterall. Currently, the discrimination against our dafter and less skilled is worse than anything we managed on race and colour.