China to Cancel College Majors That Don’t Pay

total0

Limp Gawd
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Bad move China.... All the great civilizations in history had thriving arts and cultural programs

Culture and art did just fine before they became university programs for kids who didn't make it in legitimate courses.
It will do fine after.
 

dderidex

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Culture and art did just fine before they became university programs for kids who didn't make it in legitimate courses.
It will do fine after.

I assume you realize that the very first 'higher learning' institutions were exclusively devoted to literature and philosophy, with art following closely behind? And that "vocational" education at the university-level you are referring to being a very, very recent fad in human history?
 

PynkFloydd

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I hope all of the "arts and liberal arts majors are a waste" people here realize that things like mathematics are considered a branch of philosophy. ...and a LOT of other subjects like Economics are also considered "arts" programs.

Liberal arts majors are also a solid base to move into law, medicine, marketing or any other number of high paying jobs.

...but, hey, who needs informed information, right? :rolleyes:
 
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Which is why we have thousands upon thousands of college students graduating with completely worthless liberal arts degrees and wondering why they can't get a job higher than the cash register at McDonalds and bitching they can't afford their 100k loans.

People need to learn that Culture and Art are wonderful enriching things..but they are not a Viable major college degree.

College degrees aren't viable on the scale we produce them, period. If everyone switched to STEM fields, we'd just have that many more unemployed lab techs and engineers. Elite institutions probably can produce great thinkers, simply because they attract lots of very smart and highly motivated people from many different fields (yes, including art and culture - see UC Berkley and Pixar/Dreamworks), put them in the same place, and encourage them to talk to each other.

But you can't take someone with an IQ of 100 and average motivation, ship him to a genius manufacturing facility for four years, and turn out an Einstein. There has to be a shorter, less expensive option so the average person can obtain job training.
 

XacTactX

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This is why China is and will continue to beat the ever-loving crap out of the US. They can make unpopular but necessary decisions. How stupid is it to loan an 18 year old 150k to get a philosophy degree? How stupid is it when the government backs unconditionally each and every one of these loans? How stupid is it that our country has a massive shortage of engineers and scientists? Well that last one may just be propaganda since salaries are not rising.

+1 it is an inconvenient truth, but true nontheless. They're filling their universities with students who are going to have good productive capacity after they graduate, not some pie-in-the-sky arts and crafts BS. Once they're GDP leapfrogs ours in 10 years they'll have as much arts and crafts as they want.
 

PynkFloydd

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College degrees aren't viable on the scale we produce them, period. If everyone switched to STEM fields, we'd just have that many more unemployed lab techs and engineers. Elite institutions probably can produce great thinkers, simply because they attract lots of very smart and highly motivated people from many different fields (yes, including art and culture - see UC Berkley and Pixar/Dreamworks), put them in the same place, and encourage them to talk to each other.

But you can't take someone with an IQ of 100 and average motivation, ship him to a genius manufacturing facility for four years, and turn out an Einstein. There has to be a shorter, less expensive option so the average person can obtain job training.

Most people that I've talked to don't understand that...at all. It also helps that most professors at top schools are active leaders in their fields (which also means that the coursework moves at a much faster pace).

I went back to school recently (post Army) and have experience with both community college and a top 5 (undergrad) university (with my best friend going to top 2 grad schools). The difference is night and day.

Really, if someone has genuine passion for their field, they could literally major in anything to achieve success and make a ton of money.

+1 it is an inconvenient truth, but true nontheless. They're filling their universities with students who are going to have good productive capacity after they graduate, not some pie-in-the-sky arts and crafts BS. Once they're GDP leapfrogs ours in 10 years they'll have as much arts and crafts as they want.

Your logic makes no sense. You're assuming that there's an automatic demand for those graduates and that companies have the budget to expand their workforce. All this is going to do is make the workforce more competitive (like thefreeaccount mentioned). There are also a lot of arts degrees that fill in the gaps from production to consumer/enterprise purchase.

If you'd like a case study, look at the state of our economy today. The 80s spurred a higher demand for MBA, economics and business majors. Today, even graduates from top programs have difficulty finding a job in those fields. ...but, 5 years ago, you'd be guaranteed a starting salary at $150k+.

By the way, Alan Greenspan was a Juilliard student. Playing the clarinet got him into NYU and Columbia. Yup, his "pie-in-the-sky arts and crafts BS" sure was a waste. ...what a failure he turned out to be!
 

BDS23

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Great. More immigrants. We have enough Chinese and Indians here. It's time to spread it out evenly. Try Greenland. :D
 

faugusztin

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I'd like to point out, first, that you might have been able to find a job in the "area you was learning", but if you can't English to properly articulate yourself, you don't have a hell of a lot of space to criticize someone else that's been successful.

Considering i never learned English in school and it isn't my native language i hope you can accept some of my mistakes.

Secondly, one of the benefits of living in a first world nation is being able to become educated for the purpose of the education itself rather than having to focus that education towards a specific career and not learning anything outside the scope of what you need to practice a particular trade. As someone that went to a liberal arts high school that makes anything below an ivy league college look like a joke, then on to one of the best art colleges in the country, and then on to law school, I have to say that the breadth and variety of my education has enriched my life incredibly. I'm fortunate to have had the financial and mental capacity to focus on and benefit from learning many different subjects. I prefer to more than a single use tool, and be instead, a creator, and to be able to fashion myself into whatever sort of implement that I want, or have the impulse, to be.

If you don't have the capacity to become more that a single use person, don't criticize those that rise above.

What some other said as well - sure, we need philosophers, lawyers, etc as well - but not in quantities the "first world high education system" produces. You can clearly see it everywhere - many end their school with a title, and then they are useless and can't find a job. I can see it in my country as well - lots of lawyers finishing school who can't even find a job as an assistant, because there is simply too much of them. Or people finishing Media and Communication degree, just to have no jobs because sure, we need professionals in media, just again not in the quantities the schools produce.

If you pay for education, sure, learn whatever you want. If it is state which pays for you, then i hope you can accept the fact, that they have the right to decide which high schools and what areas they want to support. If China has lack of engineers and instead have abundance of lawyers, then they have every right to cut back financing for lawyer education and instead put money in education of engineers. Or teachers. Or in whatever areas they have lack of people.
 

BBA

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At least this ensures our supply of cheap labor from China for decades to come. Until they encourage creativity rather than rote memorization, they'll always be the bitch of more creative cultures.

What, did you just have an epiphany? Would it disapoint you to learn that Chineese people are fine with exactly that role?

I was versed on this by a Chineese intern working with me. He told me this: The Chineese people do not have ambition to be creative or inventive. With that in mind, it only makes sense to not want to waste time on unimportant things.

They are in a soceity that wants to coast through technical aspects of material existence in order to reach their spiritual/traditional/afterlife goal. If that means attaining what ever technology is needed to be attained, they will do so in the easiest manner possible: lie, cheat or steal, makes no difference. Wasted time and money on non-targetted learning is not in their interest.

I can't say I blame them much.
 

rantanamo

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Liberal Arts major here. Went on to grad school, paid loans, got a good paying job. Would never have gone to grad school without my undergrad foundation which was very interesting and inspirational to my graduate studies, which were a more technical version of the same foundation. I look at such a foundation as similar to the value of sports. Many dismiss the things learned in sports, yet, many of the great leaders of the world were at a time sportsmen of some kind. Vocation is great for specific endeavors, but its not everything in life to everyone.

Related to my profession, I think we as a society get caught up in vocational education not realizing that these will never be the majority of jobs. A push towards it may result in the attornification of such professions. That's just as harmful and wasteful as a shortage. The more responsible thing would likely be to fulfill the mathematical and scientific method potential of young people to see if they want to go into such professions. Instead they'll constantly be fighting for balance as they've seen with the one child policy which is really going to hurt them in a few years.
 

DeathPrincess

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Should also include over subscribed "useful" degrees. Like at my university theres loads and loads of law students and "designers" of various things or specialist sciences. Probably 10x the number of people with the degree than actual jobs for them.

Well there go all the Arts majors :D

Film/Sound engineers/designers etc. all have things that count as "art" degrees. I suppose that you can have a profitable career as an artist too. Most people like and buy aesthetical things that look nice, or want to live in well designed spaces. :p
 

rudy

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I think you guys are trying to relate possibly different systems. Alot of Asian countries call everything college but alot of it really is just vocational school. In fact as one poster stated the US roal of colleges has shifted over the years to doing alot more vocational training. Education is really fluid and you can do it in alot of different ways and rename things that are the same or foget to rename things that are totally different. So this might not be all that bad.

As long as they are not banning private colleges from educating it is fine IMO.
 

Ididar

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By the way, Alan Greenspan was a Juilliard student. Playing the clarinet got him into NYU and Columbia. Yup, his "pie-in-the-sky arts and crafts BS" sure was a waste. ...what a failure he turned out to be!

Yes, but Alan Greenspan never stopped at his clarinet playing and tried to make a career out of it. Some can do that ... but they're a rare breed with amazing talent. He went on to get a PhD in economics. Nobody said to remove the concept of the arts completely. But, you can only do so much if you go to university for four years and come out with a major in Liberal Arts and nothing else. People that use a degree in arts to go on to law school, medical school, or something else are NOT the people that some folks are making fun of. They're making fun of the folks that do the Bachelor of Arts and then stop ... full stop ... and then go work at WalMart because they have no other job prospects and lots of debt. Those people deserve to be mocked for lacking a direction ... because they have no direction. If you have a goal and a good job ... obviously you're not the topic of conversation.
 

MindBuster

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Bad move China.... All the great civilizations in history had thriving arts and cultural programs

Ever heard of Ming Vases ?

They had arts and cultural programs way before the rest of the world, they are simply ahead, moving on, while the rest of the world is still stuck ;)
 

Wierdo

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I assume you realize that the very first 'higher learning' institutions were exclusively devoted to literature and philosophy, with art following closely behind? And that "vocational" education at the university-level you are referring to being a very, very recent fad in human history?

Maybe China's moves in this area opens up an interesting philosophical question:

Perhaps some majors/fields are better left as hobbies rather than fulltime professions, there's nothing stopping a doctor or engineer from pursuing their passion for, say for example, art, music or literature, that's what elective courses are for, helping people have a balanced and well-rounded helping of knowledge to build upon or find fulfillments in.

I don't know, I guess philosophy majors might have lotsa free time in China to ponder this more extensively.
 

TwistedAegis

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Liberal arts and philosophy are supposed to help train one's mind, to better think critically, which can be applied to any field. Do all of them do that? Of course not, but that doesn't mean the fields are altogether worthless.
 

DeathPrincess

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Perhaps some majors/fields are better left as hobbies rather than fulltime professions, there's nothing stopping a doctor or engineer from pursuing their passion for, say for example, art, music or literature, that's what elective courses are for, helping people have a balanced and well-rounded helping of knowledge to build upon or find fulfillments in.

Theres kind of a big problem with this. Though we don't really need quite some many terrible "artists" how much of scientific discovery/technology is steered toward things drempt up by authors or artists or directors?

Added to that the quality and scale of various creative industries wouldn't exactly be helped if it was just done by office workers doing it in the 2 hours free before sleep, or a doctor working a 100 hour week. There are lots of very vocational artistic jobs, your car/computer/house/clothes/city/personal possesions/internet were all probably designed by an "artist".

If you limited the sciences to "for profit" things, there would be very nothing spent on theoretical physics or dark matter/black hole type theorys. It would all just be drugs and new materials, anything which would have some immediate profit gain.
 

PynkFloydd

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Yes, but Alan Greenspan never stopped at his clarinet playing and tried to make a career out of it. Some can do that ... but they're a rare breed with amazing talent. He went on to get a PhD in economics. Nobody said to remove the concept of the arts completely. But, you can only do so much if you go to university for four years and come out with a major in Liberal Arts and nothing else. People that use a degree in arts to go on to law school, medical school, or something else are NOT the people that some folks are making fun of. They're making fun of the folks that do the Bachelor of Arts and then stop ... full stop ... and then go work at WalMart because they have no other job prospects and lots of debt. Those people deserve to be mocked for lacking a direction ... because they have no direction. If you have a goal and a good job ... obviously you're not the topic of conversation.

I've met plenty of people with a BS in such things as physics, biology or even chemistry that have done the same. ...not to mention that those degrees are pretty worthless outside of their specific fields.

In the US, it's not localized to a specific degree, but more of a systemic education problem. Kids don't even begin to learn to analyze and think for themselves until they reach the college level. "No Child Left Behind" just made that worse.

One of the strongest things that an arts degree teaches is (abstract) analyzation skills. In other cultures, things such as dance, musical talent and art are practiced on a regular basis because of their heritage and traditions. That's actually one of the top things that we "won" from WWII. A lot of those European thinkers and artists saught refuge in the US and enriched our society and helped us become a world leader (which we then claimed as "American"). (You'll also notice that following WWII, our IP exploded. ...and look what happened to Russia when they stopped producing great artists and thinkers.) This is also a huge tool in promoting our American culture abroad. ...which is another reason why a lot of inventions are brought to America to be marketed worldwide.

For additional reference, my doc at the VA is a UPenn (one of THE best med schools in the world) graduate. His undergrad degree was in History. He credits that as giving him the analytical skills AND passion to pursue medicine.

Even Ken Levine (of Bioshock) credits his BA from Vassar (in drama) as giving him the tools to succeed.

It's definitely not the degree that's the problem.
 

Wierdo

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Theres kind of a big problem with this. Though we don't really need quite some many terrible "artists" how much of scientific discovery/technology is steered toward things drempt up by authors or artists or directors?

Added to that the quality and scale of various creative industries wouldn't exactly be helped if it was just done by office workers doing it in the 2 hours free before sleep, or a doctor working a 100 hour week. There are lots of very vocational artistic jobs, your car/computer/house/clothes/city/personal possesions/internet were all probably designed by an "artist".

If you limited the sciences to "for profit" things, there would be very nothing spent on theoretical physics or dark matter/black hole type theorys. It would all just be drugs and new materials, anything which would have some immediate profit gain.

There's certainly a certain level of demand for any field, I agree, it's certainly a fascinating topic of discussion on how much that is and how to deal with the balance for the good of society/economy/nation/world etc.

A few points I may add:

I don't think all doctors work 100 hours a week, that's a hospital thing, some are private practice, so it's not like they all live to work you know. A hobby is important for personal health I think, doctors of all people should know that - ironically my uncle is a doctor but used to work too much and smoke so life is funny that way sometimes lol.

Also I don't think "fulltime" artists necessarily translates to good artists, Leonardo Da Vinchi was more than just a painter for example. But I know what you mean from a general angle, yeah.
 

faugusztin

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The Ministry of Education’s criteria for reducing or eliminating college majors includes consecutive years with a graduate employment rate below 60%.

So again, why should Chinese keep college majors where half of the students can't find a job in 2 years ? Why should in fact any country keep "making" people, who have no chance to get a job ? And maybe some of you guys think too much into it, by cancelling they can easily try to push the specific schools just to cut back the number of students to reasonable numbers, producing less unemployed people and saving money too this way. If 40% of graduates can't find a job in, where is the issue with cutting back the number of students (and state funding) in those majors by 40% ?

PS: Once again, we don't talk about the US paid school system. We talk about the Chinese public school system (paid not by students or their parents, but by the state). There are paid universities in China as well, and guess what, we don't talk about them - those are not affected by this decision.
 

Manaknight

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Culture and art did just fine before they became university programs for kids who didn't make it in legitimate courses.
It will do fine after.

I think both are important...But there are two issues involving art/culture and the college/secondary education system.

Teaching them as their raw entities is worthless, if one cannot apply them...then all you can do is stand around in an art gallery all day and be hungry.

apply that culture, become an anthropologist/archaeologist etc.... or as an artist, learn how to apply art to the real world..and not by making abstract stuff in a park somewhere, learn how to use art to brand yourself and create something marketable...somewhere along the lines colleges forget this part of it...you can name picasso's pet name for his left testicle...but you can apply the art fundamentals you learned in the real world....skewed priorities. You can always practice high art and work on it on the side and with any luck become a famous painter or whatnot...but to simply come out of school expecting that degree to pay up in it's raw form is just unrealistic for 98% of the people.

In general as well, the world has lost an appreciation for art and culture, its a societal thing unfortunately, it's just not held in high regard by the popular opinion...or more specifically, its often just forgotten about...another one of those things programmed out of us by the mainstream. it just sort of is what it is...currently our culture glorifies idiocy and condemns art/culture/intelligence (this overarchingly applies to "real" degrees/fields as well)....this is sort of the elephant in the room here.
 

Wierdo

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So again, why should Chinese keep college majors where half of the students can't find a job in 2 years ? Why should in fact any country keep "making" people, who have no chance to get a job ? And maybe some of you guys think too much into it, by cancelling they can easily try to push the specific schools just to cut back the number of students to reasonable numbers, producing less unemployed people and saving money too this way. If 40% of graduates can't find a job in, where is the issue with cutting back the number of students (and state funding) in those majors by 40% ?

PS: Once again, we don't talk about the US paid school system. We talk about the Chinese public school system (paid not by students or their parents, but by the state). There are paid universities in China as well, and guess what, we don't talk about them - those are not affected by this decision.

Sounds reasonable, the state pays for degrees in high demand, and the private sector handles other fields of interest.

Kinda reminds me of healthcare in some of the European countries, where public healthcare handles most stuff, and a private sector is available for obscure cases or, more commonly, the wealthy who want preferential treatment.
 

roaf85

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I hope all of the "arts and liberal arts majors are a waste" people here realize that things like mathematics are considered a branch of philosophy. ...and a LOT of other subjects like Economics are also considered "arts" programs.

Liberal arts majors are also a solid base to move into law, medicine, marketing or any other number of high paying jobs.

...but, hey, who needs informed information, right? :rolleyes:

People don't look at math as a branch of philosophy. It is more like a prerequisite for engineering degrees.

I wouldn't consider a "lawyer" that great of a career. Sure it can be high paying, but the unemployment for new lawyers is staggering.
 

ekuest

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Bad move China.... All the great civilizations in history had thriving arts and cultural programs

got your cause and effect mixed up sir. when you have a thriving civilization, you can afford to spend extra money on art.
 

sleepeeg3

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There are a lot of nursing, engineering, biology, physics, chemistry, basically the sciences, graduates over here. Yet that doesn't exactly help us rise from the Third World. Especially with the First World tightening things up on immigrants.
The "first world" is not tightening anything up on immigrants. The US lets in more immigrants than any other country. However, hopefully the US starts doing something about the illegal invaders, before we do become "third world." We are more in debt than any other country. At 105% debt to GDP, we are very near bankruptcy. Greece went bankrupt @ 129% and we are projected to hit ~175% debt to GDP by 2021. The illegal invaders are a massive contribution to that problem.
 

PynkFloydd

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People don't look at math as a branch of philosophy. It is more like a prerequisite for engineering degrees.

I wouldn't consider a "lawyer" that great of a career. Sure it can be high paying, but the unemployment for new lawyers is staggering.

Doesn't really matter what "people" think. It is what it is. It was developed BY philosophers and continues to be a part of philosophy (until the much higher levels where it gets very specific to certain fields). ;)

By the way, just an FYI:

The unemployment rate for engineering and computer occupations is rising faster than for other professionals, according to the IEEE, which says first quarter labor statistics reveal a significant increase in the jobless rates among engineers.

http://www.networkworld.com/news/2009/040609-engineer-unemployment-rate.html


There are a lot of crappy schools out there and a lot of uneducated people with degrees. Just because someone has a degree, doesn't mean they're employable.
 

roaf85

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Doesn't really matter what "people" think. It is what it is. It was developed BY philosophers and continues to be a part of philosophy (until the much higher levels where it gets very specific to certain fields). ;)

By the way, just an FYI:



http://www.networkworld.com/news/2009/040609-engineer-unemployment-rate.html


There are a lot of crappy schools out there and a lot of uneducated people with degrees. Just because someone has a degree, doesn't mean they're employable.

Good thing your article was from 2009 and probably even statistics taken from before that.

I could care less as most employers do about the basis of math. People look at math as a requirement of engineering and science professions and it is.

People completely proficient at mathematics skills enjoy higher lower unemployment and probably a higher starting salary.

It is common sense a engineering degree not only be GPA requirements is much much harder than any philosophy degree.

People in the workforce know this.
 

roaf85

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The "first world" is not tightening anything up on immigrants. The US lets in more immigrants than any other country. However, hopefully the US starts doing something about the illegal invaders, before we do become "third world." We are more in debt than any other country. At 105% debt to GDP, we are very near bankruptcy. Greece went bankrupt @ 129% and we are projected to hit ~175% debt to GDP by 2021. The illegal invaders are a massive contribution to that problem.

Your 105 statistic was taken just after world war 2.
 

KnishofDeath

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If everyone becomes a science and technology major, there will not be nearly enough jobs for science and technology majors. Hell the promise of STEM has failed anyway, still not enough jobs to fill demand, because there is no way to predict what particular speciality in a STEM field will need workers 4-10 years out. We need Art Majors, and Social Science Majors. But hey, why would China want a population that knowns history and how institutions of power function in a society?
 

PynkFloydd

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Good thing your article was from 2009 and probably even statistics taken from before that.

I could care less as most employers do about the basis of math. People look at math as a requirement of engineering and science professions and it is.

People completely proficient at mathematics skills enjoy higher lower unemployment and probably a higher starting salary.

It is common sense a engineering degree not only be GPA requirements is much much harder than any philosophy degree.

People in the workforce know this.

The IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) last report was from 2009 REPORTING on the record level of unemployment in 2008-2009. If you think that it's gotten better, you're lying to yourself about the current state of our economy.

Unless you provide some factual information and proof for your claims, then it's not correct information.

Fine, here's an article from 2010:

Matt Grant, a 2009 graduate of Ohio State University, majored in chemical engineering and completed three internships. After nearly a year-long job search, he found a position -- as a waiter at a Clarion Inn.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/05/20/job-market-2010_n_583048.html

...worthless engineering majors. :D

By the way, NO degree from a top school is easy.

...right now, even the job fairs and school networking functions at top 10 schools are seeing huge amounts of unemployed grads in ALL fields.
 

wuzupfoo

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The "first world" is not tightening anything up on immigrants. The US lets in more immigrants than any other country. However, hopefully the US starts doing something about the illegal invaders, before we do become "third world." We are more in debt than any other country. At 105% debt to GDP, we are very near bankruptcy. Greece went bankrupt @ 129% and we are projected to hit ~175% debt to GDP by 2021. The illegal invaders are a massive contribution to that problem.

Please stop your lack of understanding of economics should not be allowed to spread. Also btw the reason we are in debt is because of the wars we have been fighting. Not illegals.. ideology is blinding you to fact. Im not a liberal so dont go there either. I just like knowing the truth rather than repeating the stupidity someone said on tv.
 

PynkFloydd

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Please stop your lack of understanding of economics should not be allowed to spread. Also btw the reason we are in debt is because of the wars we have been fighting. Not illegals.. ideology is blinding you to fact. Im not a liberal so dont go there either. I just like knowing the truth rather than repeating the stupidity someone said on tv.

LOL

Harvard's annual housing report actually has a GREAT write up on this. Our economy is actually partly in trouble because of less illegals coming over.
 

rudy

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The "first world" is not tightening anything up on immigrants. The US lets in more immigrants than any other country. However, hopefully the US starts doing something about the illegal invaders, before we do become "third world." We are more in debt than any other country. At 105% debt to GDP, we are very near bankruptcy. Greece went bankrupt @ 129% and we are projected to hit ~175% debt to GDP by 2021. The illegal invaders are a massive contribution to that problem.

You do not understand anything about economics. The reason the US is in trouble is because we have a stagnant population and a tax code designed for a growing population. Most people only have 2 kids which means no growth. Immigration is how we grow and the major reason that the USA is more resiliant than other countries even though we were the country that caused this mess in large part. If life was fair we would be bankrupt not greece. It was our houseing crisis and our selling bad loans that caused this mess.

Also its not wars either. It is simply a system designed for a different time and we either need to boost our work force or we need to restructure the taxes and spending. Wars did not make Americans go buy houses they could not afford. Wars are not what is causing medical costs to explode. Wars did not cause us to build massive houses for smaller average families and buy more cars than we need. The USA is in trouble because we are totally out of touch with reality. And it is the hard working immigrants that come in and do the shitty jobs Americans are unwilling to do and spend what they have that are keeping us from falling apart.

Also another point on immigration. An illegal immigrant working in the USA is in fact working in the USA. If he doesn't work here his job will probably be outsourced. My point is I would rather see a reduction in pay and have a job than lose my job all together. That seems to be the point most Americans completely miss. Immigrants come here and live at the same costs but they are willing to worker harder for less. And all we can do is complain until all our jobs are outsourced to China.
 
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