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South Lorne

Will Blanket Education Help The West?

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...from the News Blog section this article could have been written by Members of this Forum....lots of sense ...even from the Guardian... :rolleyes:

Western Europeans and Americans are about to suffer a profound shock. For the past 30 years governments have explained that, while they can no longer protect jobs through traditional forms of state intervention such as subsidies and tariffs, they can expand and reform education to maximise opportunity. If enough people buckle down to acquiring higher-level skills and qualifications, Europeans and Americans will continue to enjoy rising living standards. If they work hard enough, each generation can still do better than its parents. All that is required is to bring schools up to scratch and persuade universities to teach "marketable" skills. That is the thinking behind Michael Gove's policies and those of all his recent predecessors as education secretary.

But the financial meltdown of 2008 and the subsequent squeeze on incomes is slowly revealing an awful truth. As figures out last week from the Office for National Statistics show, real UK wages have not risen since 2005, the longest sustained freeze in living standards since the 1920s. While it has not hit the elite in banking, the freeze affects most of the middle class as much as the working class. This is not a blip, nor the result of educational shortcomings. In the US, which introduced mass higher education long before Britain, the average graduate's purchasing power has barely risen in 30 years. Just as education failed to deliver social democratic promises of social equality and mobility, so it will fail to deliver neoliberal promises of universal opportunity for betterment.

"Knowledge work", supposedly the west's salvation, is now being exported like manual work. A global mass market in unskilled labour is being quickly succeeded by a market in middle-class work, particularly for industries, such as electronics, in which so much hope of employment opportunities and high wages was invested. As supply increases, employers inevitably go to the cheapest source. A chip designer in India costs 10 times less than a US one. The neoliberals forgot to thread (or re-read) Marx. "As capital accumulates the situation of the worker, be his payment high or low, must grow worse."

We are familiar with the outsourcing of routine white-collar "back office" jobs such as data inputting. But now the middle office is going too. Analysing X-rays, drawing up legal contracts, processing tax returns, researching bank clients, and even designing industrial systems are examples of skilled jobs going offshore. Even teaching is not immune: last year a north London primary school hired mathematicians in India to provide one-to-one tutoring over the internet. Microsoft, Siemens, General Motors and Philips are among big firms that now do at least some of their research in China. The pace will quicken. The export of "knowledge work" requires only the transmission of electronic information, not factories and machinery. Alan Blinder, a former vice-chairman of the US Federal Reserve, has estimated that a quarter of all American service sector jobs could go overseas.......etc etc ...

..there is more..

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/feb/28/education-jobs-middle-class-decline

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The export of "knowledge work" requires only the transmission of electronic information, not factories and machinery. Alan Blinder, a former vice-chairman of the US Federal Reserve, has estimated that a quarter of all American service sector jobs could go overseas

It will be more here as we are still trying to drive the economy on the back of extreme bubbles and have learnt nothing from the past. London has bubbled its way to to the top of the list of expensive jobs we could do moving elsewhere again.

Good show, well done, bravo.

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...from the News Blog section this article could have been written by Members of this Forum....lots of sense ...even from the Guardian... :rolleyes:

..there is more..

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/feb/28/education-jobs-middle-class-decline

The knowledge economy could only ever have been hailed as it was either by a charlatan or someone without the slightest clue about wealth creation.

Or in the case of Blair, both.

EDIT: Oh, and thanks for directing me to the Grauniad. A couple of clicks more and I was reading Toynbees latest piffle. It's like a parallel Universe over there.

Edited by bogbrush

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Guest sillybear2

The knowledge economy could only ever have been hailed as it was either by a charlatan or someone without the slightest clue about wealth creation.

Or in the case of Blair, both.

EDIT: Oh, and thanks for directing me to the Grauniad. A couple of clicks more and I was reading Toynbees latest piffle. It's like a parallel Universe over there.

She still has the audacity to moralise about tax avoidance, boasting of how she helped occupy a branch of Barclays, no mention of GMG's misdeeds in the Caymans of course. Denial much?

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A couple of clicks more and I was reading Toynbees latest piffle. It's like a parallel Universe over there.

...yeah ...I only venture in when there is a link to a story ....it's like entering a world of 'make believe'....all the left wing OXBRIDGE crowd will be upset by this article....or they should learn a trade..... :rolleyes:

Edited by South Lorne

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Blankets know too much already...an educated blanket may start asking awkward questions...like, "why the frack am I always on the cold side?"

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Very true, and I'm sure everyone on here already knows it.

Why do people still fall for the government line? The knowledge economy was such an absurd idea I tended to just ignore it. It assumes some kind of racial or cultural superiority which cannot and does not exist in the modern world.

The future is global for the elites. Really global. The young Camerons,Blairs etc. will travel the world. London, Singapore, Bejing, New York, wherever. They will be truly global citizens. They will no doubt pay for their University education contacts wherever fortune takes them. And they will stay very wealthy, as is their wont.

The rest of us are in for a rough ride.

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The knowledge economy could only ever have been hailed as it was either by a charlatan or someone without the slightest clue about wealth creation.

Or anyone knowing anything about humanity, otherwise they'd have know that we have all sorts of folks and made sure that we have jobs suited for people of all abilities where possible.

But eh, from their mad idea that low IQ kids can be trained up to be brainiacs(just add enough middle class 'genius' to their class and it'll 'rub off' (not)) they go straight to the concept that those who don't who make it don't deserve a life, since clearly, those ungrateful dunces who refuse to grow a super brain despite best efforts deserve everything they get for failing to fulfill the lefty fantasy about 'equality'.

The entire concept of knowledge industry is a crazy invention like the old East-Friesian bus joke (Germany's Kerrymen) -- that thing is 24 meters wide and 1.5m long, and all because *everyeone* is insisting on a front seat :)

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The knowledge economy could only ever have been hailed as it was either by a charlatan or someone without the slightest clue about wealth creation.

It was at root a deeply racist idea that somehow the white anglo saxon is inherently more creative and inventive than everyone else.

I wonder if the 'free market' acoyltes will still keep the faith when it's their jobs being arbitraged into oblivion, instead of those smelly industrial types whose lives didn't matter anyway- or will there be a sudden conversion to the protectionist view? :lol:

All of this and more was accurately predicted by Goldsmith in the 90's, but the lure of easy money was just too much for the PTB, who could see nothing but upside in the idea of cheap labour and lots of it.

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The knowledge economy could only ever have been hailed as it was either by a charlatan or someone without the slightest clue about wealth creation.

The knowledge economy is a good and necessary thing, and its rise is a valid historic trend.

But the economy is like a diet: what's needed is a healthy balance. A knowledge economy centred on quality universities (the Russell Group might be a good focus), together with other economic activity. Anyone who thinks pushing 50% of 18-year-olds into a debased "university" education makes sense should take heed of WS Gilbert's (1889) Gondoliers.

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Occupational licensing is a severe problem, especially for those trying to start out or entrepreneur their way out of poverty. It also raises costs for everyone else due to the artificially constrained supply of services in that sector.

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some of you miss the point that the country needs to be educated just to stand still.

developing countries around the world are now churning out graduates by the millions, and competing for jobs that use to be a shoe-in for more developed societies.

university isnt about the the certificate you receive at the end but the education and learning and skills that you develop which you apply throughout working your life.

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...good link in your post from the ex Intel boss:

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/10_28/b4186048358596_page_4.htm

I fled Hungary as a young man in 1956 to come to the U.S. Growing up in the Soviet bloc, I witnessed first-hand the perils of both government overreach and a stratified population. Most Americans probably aren't aware that there was a time in this country when tanks and cavalry were massed on Pennsylvania Avenue to chase away the unemployed. It was 1932; thousands of jobless veterans were demonstrating outside the White House. Soldiers with fixed bayonets and live ammunition moved in on them, and herded them away from the White House. In America! Unemployment is corrosive. If what I'm suggesting sounds protectionist, so be it.

...USA 1930's.... North Africa / MEast today.... :rolleyes:

Edited by South Lorne

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university isnt about the the certificate you receive at the end but the education and learning and skills that you develop which you apply throughout working your life.

If your job has gone to India you don't have a working life.

The reason the young are obsessed with paper qualifications is because we have created world in which anyone without them is deemed worthless.

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some of you miss the point that the country needs to be educated just to stand still.

developing countries around the world are now churning out graduates by the millions, and competing for jobs that use to be a shoe-in for more developed societies.

university isnt about the the certificate you receive at the end but the education and learning and skills that you develop which you apply throughout working your life.

You're talking about exposure to a culture of thinking and learning. Kind-of a direct opposite to celebrities on the telly.

It works by putting young people into an environment where they exercise the minds beyond the immediate. It fails if they only concentrate on the immediate, whether that immediate be booze and sex, or grades and jobs. Though as ever, booze, sex, grades and jobs have their place in a healthy mix - just not at the top.

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some of you miss the point that the country needs to be educated just to stand still.

developing countries around the world are now churning out graduates by the millions, and competing for jobs that use to be a shoe-in for more developed societies.

university isnt about the the certificate you receive at the end but the education and learning and skills that you develop which you apply throughout working your life.

+1

Education only provides a relative advantage for an individual seeking a job (or workers of a nation) - when 40% have degrees a degree does not give the same advantage it might have given an individual worker when only 5% had them. The same applies on a global scale as well as a national and local one.

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What gets me is that everyone just automatically swallows this bit:

For the past 30 years governments have explained that, while they can no longer protect jobs through traditional forms of state intervention such as subsidies and tariffs

The question should be, why can't governments do this? It seems to be working well for China.

The whole idea of import duties and tariffs is to level the playing field, to ensure that domestic products are not undercut by cheap labour, or cheap goods from a country in which the government subsidises production.

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university also teaches you a different way of thinking. its not just about the "content" of your course.

whereas at gsce and a-levels, you are sort of just learning facts about what you read, university teaches you to think for yourself.

you question everything, the things you see and read, you take both sides to an arguement, and you start to develop your own opinions and apply yourself rather than regurgitate the things you have learned.

it definitely broadens your mind, if only due to the range and types of people you meet, but the main learning is the way you question the "normal" ways of doing things when you realise those norms were simply established by the people before you.

for me gcse and a-level teach you how things are.

university teaches you to think how things should be. i.e teaching you to shape the future.

Edited by mfp123

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Guest sillybear2

The question should be, why can't governments do this? It seems to be working well for China.

The whole idea of import duties and tariffs is to level the playing field, to ensure that domestic products are not undercut by cheap labour, or cheap goods from a country in which the government subsidises production.

The IMF has belatedly realised that the only way for poor countries to develop is by some moderate protection of domestic industries, to ensure they don't get driven into the ground by rich multinationals.

Why can't our governments do this? Because the people who stand to lose out also control our laws, not to mention they also fund shill academic economists who see restrictions on anything as pure heresy. Conveniently ignoring the fact China doesn't play by these rules, and the fact the labour market isn't some fungible commodity like oil, there's real people involved. If you "lift and shift" industry to the lowest cost base you destroy lives and the capacity of those workers to consume, but nobody cares to think that far, just blow a few bubbles instead.

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university teaches you to think how things should be. i.e teaching you to shape the future.

...didn't help the Nulabour Oxbridge crew who only learned to destroy ...were they just a bad batch...?..... :rolleyes:

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For years now I've been wary of, and have heard of, very skilled Indian & Chinese engineering graduates taking jobs by the bucketload. Going to be an interesting couple of decades.

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For years now I've been wary of, and have heard of, very skilled Indian & Chinese engineering graduates taking jobs by the bucketload. Going to be an interesting couple of decades.

What do you mean wary of and heard of? It has been happening for YEARS. I remember twenty weeks when I was working in hot food over a decade ago. They shipped over aout 200 people from China (who came to us as we cooked authentic Chinese dishes) to work the machinery and become experienced in using the said machinery. Near the end of their stay they were to dismantle the machine and stick it in shipping containers to be taken to Tsingtao.

Accountants wages have fallen through the floor (have a look at reed) where they are about 18-23K due to outsourcing. A few of my acquaintances got a nasty shock recently when instead of paying their company (there they are associates) £6000 for an audit they flew a few people in instead. CAD, low level lawyer work etc its all going.

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university also teaches you a different way of thinking. its not just about the "content" of your course.

whereas at gsce and a-levels, you are sort of just learning facts about what you read, university teaches you to think for yourself.

you question everything, the things you see and read, you take both sides to an arguement, and you start to develop your own opinions and apply yourself rather than regurgitate the things you have learned.

it definitely broadens your mind, if only due to the range and types of people you meet, but the main learning is the way you question the "normal" ways of doing things when you realise those norms were simply established by the people before you.

for me gcse and a-level teach you how things are.

university teaches you to think how things should be. i.e teaching you to shape the future.

As far as I can see, the greatest lesson my daughter learned was a sense of entitlement...she has a degree and should have a good job...all her mates are the same...none are employed at the mo, in "decent" jobs.

I remember her head in the 6th form gave a speech about how many they were getting to uni...and they were proud that most of their pupils WERENT going to end up as hairdressers...cue the BT senior manager with her guff about getting an education to get anywhere....

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As far as I can see, the greatest lesson my daughter learned was a sense of entitlement...she has a degree and should have a good job...all her mates are the same...none are employed at the mo, in "decent" jobs.

Depends on the course and the teacher, my economics teacher was excellent, she made us question our assumptions about everything and would flat out scream at us for getting things wrong. First class was an open case study factory is losing money what does the factory do? Usual suggestions of increase price or shut down. Cue her going absolutely nuts and castigating these answers and then telling us to think again and again.

I remember her head in the 6th form gave a speech about how many they were getting to uni...and they were proud that most of their pupils WERENT going to end up as hairdressers...cue the BT senior manager with her guff about getting an education to get anywhere....

Compared to my teachers in Highschool, he came in told us we'd all end up on the dole and sat down listening to the radio. He did leave work out though and would mark it if you wanted to do it. Fast forward 15 years later and the class of 1996 most of them ARE on the dole. Danny became an accountant who recently got his job outsourced, Kelly became a WG, the other Kelly left the UK and works for the UN. While the best anybody else has got is call centre work at the massive O2 place. This place gets outsourced or dies the entire town dies.

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