September 28, 2009

Burdening young adults

Charlotte Hays calls our attention to an article in today's WSJ about the need to roll all those healthy young bodies into the government-controlled healthcare mix. It won't work without them. But what a burden the individual mandate places on them as they try to get started in life. Ms. Hays writes:

If you have a son or daughter ready to graduate from college and enter the workforce, you might see them facing a heavy financial burden that previous generations haven’t faced. This obligation, not incurred by them, will limit their professional choices and take money from them that they might prefer to allocate in other ways (savings accounts, for example, if they are thrifty).
The amounts being tossed around, $1200 or so, are hardly trivial to kids with entry-level jobs and the expenses of cars, gasoline, insurance, and rent to keep up with (if they can afford to move out of mom and dad's house, that is). Just one more way big government infantilizes its 'beneficiaries.'
Ms. Hays notes that it amounts to a "gigantic wealth transference," and adds,
I must say, if I were a parent—or more to the point, a young person just entering the post-graduate world of work and family—I would not be pleased.
It's a third strike against young adults. Strike one: massive student loan debt from inflated college tuition, frequently misspent on an inferior and misrepresented product. Strike two: record unemployment rates (52%) for their age group:
"There is no assistance provided [in the stimulus bill] for the development of job growth through small businesses, which create 70 percent of the jobs in the country," Angrisani said in an interview last week. "All those [unemployed young people] should be getting hired by small businesses."
There are six million small businesses in the country, those that employ less than 100 people, and a jobs stimulus bill should include tax credits to give incentives to those businesses to hire people, the former Labor official said.
"If each of the businesses hired just one person, we would go a long way in growing ourselves back to where we were before the recession," Angrisani noted.
During previous recessions, in the early '80s, early '90s and after Sept. 11, 2001, unemployment among 16-to-24 year olds never went above 50 percent. Except after 9/11, jobs growth followed within two years.
A much slower recovery is forecast today. Shierholz believes it could take four or five years to ramp up jobs again.
A study from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, a government database, said the damage to a new career by a recession can last 15 years. And if young Americans are not working and becoming productive members of society, they are less likely to make major purchases -- from cars to homes -- thus putting the US economy further behind the eight ball.
Read on. Not a recipe for success. Sorry, kids.

Most recent posts here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

You can comment anonymously but please give yourself some kind of name. It makes discussion a lot easier. Thanks.