University’s False Promise and the Dangerous Child’s Reply

College is a place where young people go to binge, fornicate, receive an academic lobotomy, and become burdened by insurmountable debt — all in the quest for increasingly worthless diplomas. __ Al Fin

Wage Advantage from College Diploma Shrinking

College Advantage Shrinking
Image Source

Wages for college graduates across many majors have fallen since the 2007-09 recession, according to an unpublished analysis by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce in Washington using Census bureau figures. Young job-seekers appear to be the biggest losers.
__ Bloomberg

Even in crucial fields such as engineering, physical sciences, health sciences, computer science, and agriculture, wages for college grads have been dropping.

Image Source

Some majors are bucking the wage-stagnation trend. An experienced petroleum engineering major earned $179,000 a year on average in 2015, up $46,000 from five years prior, according to the Georgetown analysis. Beyond those with special technical skills, philosophy and public policy majors have also seen their earnings rise. __ Bloomberg

Meanwhile, student loan debt across society soars:

Skyrocketing Student Debt

The Real World Needs Competent People with Applicable Skills

Look at the starting wages for various degrees in the graphics above — then consider that a good welder or oil field worker can earn over $100,000 before he turns 21, if he is given a head start! Such lucrative skills can be learned by youth in high school before turning 18.

Another high school program that trains future oil field workers.
A list of 27 good paying jobs that do not require 4 year degrees

This doesn’t mean that all young people should be shunted toward blue collar and mid-level jobs and professions. That is not what Dangerous Child training is about. Instead, Dangerous Child training is aimed at training competent and confident young people who are equipped to shape their own futures from the onset of adulthood. Some Dangerous Children will go into the trades, some will choose higher education — some may even choose government work! The goal of Dangerous Child training is to give the ownership of that choice to the child himself, along with plenty of backdoors in case the first choice doesn’t work out. And all of that without a mountain of debt!

Dangerous Children master at least three ways of achieving financial independence by the time they turn 18 yo. Not all of them will earn him $100,000 a year off the bat. But by combining practical competence with business and entrepreneurial skills — that are also learned before turning 18 — Dangerous Children are capable of building businesses that can earn well over a $million a year.

Sure, businesses have to pay taxes, labour, rents, and so forth, but Dangerous Children learn how to economise on such expenses by the age of 12. Most of them get plenty of practise at running a small business by the time they reach 18 years, so they are ready to start building a future out of the gate.

A Dangerous Childhood Depends Upon a Child’s Ability to Teach Himself

Modern society too often looks at children as incompetent nuisances, who must be sheltered from the real world until they turn 18 — at which point they are thrown into a corrupt and undisciplined world completely unprepared for what they will face. The end result of such an approach is a growing herd of sheep-like young people who are still incompetent, and likely to stay that way. By default, these sheep are closely guided in their tastes, interests, and “relevant causes” by faux experts in media, academia, and government and by celebrity figures around the world.

A Dangerous Child, on the other hand, learns to teach himself from an early age. By teaching himself to develop a broad competence in practical skills as well as in scholarship, a Dangerous Child develops confidence in his own ability to solve increasingly important problems and to build things of increasing complexity that actually work.

A self-taught person who possesses both self discipline and self confidence will not be swayed by popular appeals to group status or celebrity appeal. He will be a contrarian thinker who works things out for himself, impervious to the herd mentality of a corrupt, groupthinking culture.

Getting Real About Life in the World

If you are young and not Dangerous, your dreams and passions are almost certainly pathetic shite. If you are not Dangerous, you have probably never been exposed to the full-spectrum world out there. So, here’s a word of advice: Don’t follow your passion. Discover the real world first, then you can start to work out how you might fit in that world.

Mike Rowe is a TV personality who championed the concept of “dirty jobs” — jobs that frighten or repel most people, need to be done, typically pay well, and are very low down on the list of most persons’ “dream jobs.”

Mike Rowe has a foundation, the mikeroweWORKS Foundation, which is dedicated to promoting “skills jobs,” work that doesn’t require a 4 year college diploma — but instead requires real world competence and skills.

* A trillion dollars in student loans.
* Record high unemployment.
* Three million good jobs that no one seems to want.

The mikeroweWORKS Foundation started the Profoundly Disconnected® campaign to challenge the absurd belief that a four-year degree is the only path to success. The Skills Gap is here, and if we don’t close it, it’ll swallow us all. Which is a long way of saying, we could use your help… __ MikeRowWORKS Foundation

Skilled workers are growing closer to retirement age. Farmers, welders, skilled construction workers, skilled maintenance workers, and a host of other pivotal “dirty jobs” requiring competence and expertise are growing older and retiring. They are not being replaced fast enough with good enough young replacements.

… the hardest segment of the workforce for employers to staff with skilled talent hasn’t been registered nurses or engineers or even web developers. It’s been the skilled trades – the welders, electricians, machinists, etc. that are so prevalent in manufacturing and construction.

But if these skilled-trades workers are difficult to find now, as Manpower MAN +2.25%’s survey indicates, just wait a few years. The skills gap is likely to become more acute.

In 2012, 53 percent of skilled-trade workers in the U.S. were 45 years and older, according to EMSI, and 18.6 percent were between the ages of 55 and 64. (We are using the Virginia Manufacturers Association’s definition of skilled trades, which encompasses 21 particular occupations.) __ Joshua Wright

Forbes
Forbes

Too many young people cannot focus on one thing long enough to develop competent expertise, cannot go long enough without using drugs to pass either a scheduled or a random urine test, and cannot be trusted with hazardous machinery, materials, or tools. But if young people were exposed to the real world of responsibilities and consequences early enough to understand what it takes to earn, save, and go independent — their attitudes might well undergo a significant adjustment for the better.

A lot of the “dirty-jobs” people that Rowe highlighted on his TV show were multi-millionaires. The money goes to where needs are filled, and glamour often doesn’t enter into it.

Rowe is an advocate for blue-collar workers and is the CEO of the MikeRoweWorks Foundation, which he started in 2008 to help connect people with skilled jobs. Rowe also uses it to challenge, what he calls, America’s “dysfunctional relationship with work.” __ Source

Mike Rowe has some unconventional ideas which could contribute to the improvement and prosperity of virtually any country’s educational policies. And he offers these ideas freely to every US president — whether Democrat or Republican.

“When the dust settles, and The White House gets a new tenant, I’ll make the same offer to President Trump that I did to President Obama — to assist as best I can in any attempt to reinvigorate the skilled trades, and shine a light on millions of good jobs that no one seems excited about pursuing,” he said. __ Variety

Mike Rowe wants to match people with jobs. But he also wants to improve skills training in the US, starting at the high school age level. Because of this and many of his other ideas, Rowe is light years ahead of most of his contemporaries in television and the entertainment media when it comes to contributing to useful change.

Mike Rowe goes beyond the surface fluff of politics, media, academia, and activism, and gets down and dirty in the real world. He is opening minds one by one. Perhaps if President-Elect Trump decides to give him a louder voice, he can open more minds and empower more people to develop practical skills and find ways of using them profitably. Still, there are a lot of things that Mike Rowe knows which he cannot easily communicate to modern youth and workers, raised as they have been in a milieu of short-attention-span frivolity and superficiality. But he does us all a service by continuing in what he is doing.

Dangerous Children Start Earlier and Go Much Farther

Dangerous Children know more than just blue collar skills, of course, although they cannot achieve their fullest potential without developing a wide range of practical skills and competencies — regardless of what careers, professions, vocations, and working pathways they may choose. And Dangerous Children have the utmost respect for other people who master practical skills, do dirty jobs, run their own businesses, and personally keep communities and societies running through their own competence.

But somebody needs to go beyond the way things are and how they could be better. Someone must understand how the larger workings might break and how to build the parallel infrastructures and disruptive intermeshing technologies that would allow societies to re-form and self-organise along more practical and self-sustaining and self-reforming avenues of development.

This is a higher level of the “dirty job” concept, but sooner or later it will be needed.

Hope for the best. Prepare for the worst. It is never too late (or early) to have a Dangerous Childhood.

On Choosing to Send One’s Child to Prison, Instead of College

The following article was previously published on Al Fin, the Next Level

Think of Prison as a Preparation for Life After TEOTWAWKI
Think of Prison as a Preparation for Life After TEOTWAWKI

College is becoming more and more expensive. But the advantages of going to college are diminishing by the year.
College Costs vs Benefits Trend
College Costs vs Benefits Trend

After TEOTWAWKI — The End of The World As We Know It — your kids will need an entirely different skill set than the ones that are being taught in college.

And just what is being taught in college? How to binge, fornicate, become indoctrinated in counter-productive ideology (academic lobotomy), and how to live well on borrowed money while avoiding responsibility as long as you can?

Modern economies are built upon the predictable movement of young people into positions of responsibility. The child is supposed to grow up and learn to make a living, get married, get a mortgage, raise children, and teach his own children to follow the same responsible path through life. The entire social security net welfare society is based upon this predictable trajectory.

But something happened on the way to a perpetual motion welfare state utopia. College-educated students are going so deeply into debt that they cannot afford to pay back their student loans — much less take out mortgages and raise families. A greater and greater number of them are moving back in with their parents.

Less and less money and credit available for mortgages and raising families
Less and less money and credit available for mortgages and raising families

Not only are student loans preventing indebted students from moving on with their lives, they have grown to such a size that they are creating a growing drag on the entire US economy.

Students across the country are trapped by their debts and often unable to take advantage of the freedom that a college degree should theoretically afford them.

… Student debt doesn’t just weigh heavily on graduates. Evidence is growing that student loans may be dragging down the overall economy, not just individuals. Think about it this way: if students have significant debts, it means they’re less likely to spend money on other goods and services, and it also means they’re less likely to take out a mortgage on a house. Consumer purchasing is the primary driver of the U.S. economy, and mortgages and auto loans play a huge role as well. __ http://business.time.com/2014/02/26/student-loans-are-ruining-your-life-now-theyre-ruining-the-economy-too/

Overdue Loan Payments Eventually Drag an Economy Down
Overdue Loan Payments Eventually Drag an Economy Down

How much are these over-educated dead-beats driving down the US economy? No one knows, because the people who maintain the numbers don’t want you to know. And the people who should be holding the government’s feet to the fire to keep us informed — the media — are not doing their jobs.

Going to prison voluntarily, on the other hand, does not require taking out loans. And the skill sets that your children can learn in prison will make them better suited for the “survival of the fittest” world after TEOTWAWKI.

Prisons are full of rough men, and so will the world be after TEOTWAWKI — also known as when TSHTF. After TSHTF your children will need to know how to deal with rough men and rough women, and they will need to have many of the same skills that rough men and rough women have.

Live Off the Grid -- Tiny House Talk
Live Off the Grid — Tiny House Talk

If you have the skills to separate from government services, you can live free with your mind and your life still yours to do with as you choose.

But few people want to cut all their strings and fly free — particularly if they do not have either enormous assets or unlimited skills from which to draw. Most people do not want to live off the grid in a converted school bus, no matter how luxuriously it may be fitted out, nor are they entirely comfortable with the idea of sending their children to prison for TEOTWAWKI training.

For those more discriminating folk, we are devising the Al Fin Dangerous Child Method of Education and Child Raising. The Dangerous Child has all the benefits and positive skills of a prison term, plus all the useful knowledge and social skills of a broad based university education. But he doesn’t have all those lifelong debilitating (and sometimes deadly) viruses that often hike along with a person who spends too much time in prison or college.

And rather than accumulating a lifetime’s debt, the Dangerous Child masters at least three distinct ways of supporting himself financially, before he celebrates his 18th birthday. If he wanted a mortgage, he could have it, but he is more likely to build his own house — or pay cash for one already built.

So there you see the three choices:

  1. College
  2. Prison
  3. Dangerous Child

It is your choice. Consider carefully, since you will have to live with your decision for a long time.

But seriously,

Charles Murray: Too Many Students Going to College
Not enough students learning practical trades and other practical skills.

10 Smart Things I Learned from People who Never Went to College

Abolishing Academic Lobotomies

Altucher’s rather conventional 8 alternatives to college

Military Service: A Forgotten Choice

Al Fin blog “Education” label

Note: The above article is labeled “satire.” But if you replace the word “prison” with “a skilled apprenticeship” in the dangerous trades, “a military enlistment,” intense training in firefighting, EMS, or other hard core occupation, you will better understand the underlying intent.

Return on Investment for US Colleges and Universities

A four year college education is only appropriate for about 15% to 20% of America’s youth. Most youth need to focus on developing skills and competencies in business, entrepreneurship, and the crucial practical areas of modern life.

But if one does go to college in America, where might he get his best “return on investment?”

ROI US Universities http://www.investors.com/etfs-and-funds/personal-finance/best-colleges-for-returns-on-your-investment-costs/
ROI US Universities
http://www.investors.com/etfs-and-funds/personal-finance/best-colleges-for-returns-on-your-investment-costs/

The calculations are for more than 1,300 schools.

The best ROI are at public colleges and universities. “They dominate because of their relatively lower costs,” Bardaro said.

Schools that offer education in science, technology, engineering and math — known as STEM studies — also cluster at the top of the ROI list. Their graduates tend to land jobs that pay a lot more than the costs of school.

“Skills that you get in STEM studies are in heavy demand by employers,” Bardaro said.

The top five schools on this year’s list are the State University of New York’s Maritime College, Georgia Tech, Massachusetts Maritime Academy, Brigham Young University and Missouri University of Science and Technology.

In percentage terms, their ROIs are 13.2% for SUNY-Maritime, 12.4% for Georgia Tech, Mass. Maritime and BYU, then 12.2% for Missouri University of Science and Technology.

__ http://www.investors.com/etfs-and-funds/personal-finance/best-colleges-for-returns-on-your-investment-costs/

College degrees can be obtained via distance learning, online. One may obtain an education in any number of areas of knowledge, at any age, at any time, from any location — meeting any work or family schedule. There are fewer reasons for wasting one’s time at a bricks and mortar campus, every year that goes by.

The best curriculum for Dangerous Children — and most children in general — is a curriculum that utilises self-directed, self-disciplined teaching. It must include immersion in finance and business, practical hands-on skills from cooking to heavy equipment operations to mechanical skills to the operation of transportation vehicles made for travel on air, sea, ice, snow, and ground.

By the time a Dangerous Child is 16, he already has the equivalent of a liberal arts college degree and multiple certificates of mastery for several practical skills. By the time he is 18, he is fully capable of supporting himself financially at least three different ways. If he wants to go to university for advanced training, he will have a large number of choices to pursue.

Based on the massive amount of remedial training taking place on college campuses today, it is clear that modern society does not take the education of its children seriously — at least not until they are too old to learn at critical depth, effectively. Hence the large crops of academically lobotomised, perpetually adolescent incompetents who naively march forth from college graduations every year, to almost certain disillusionment.

The best education is a Dangerous Education, and that begins before the child is born — and continues until he dies.

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