Saturday, January 07, 2006

United States faces severe worker shortage in the future

USA Today

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States faces a severe worker shortage in the near future, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said Wednesday in advocating better education for Americans and changes in immigration law to allow in more foreign workers.
Chamber President and CEO Thomas Donohue, at a news conference outlining business prospects in 2006, said the country is ill-prepared to deal with the impending retirement of 77 million baby boomers.
"We have yet to secure an adequate supply of working taxpayers to run a growing economy and support an explosion of retirees," he said in his organization's report on the state of U.S. business

I think that is BUNK!
I'm going to be 50 years old soon and so far I have already spent $20,000 my own money in loans to further my education in hopes of getting in "entry-level" job. And as far as retirement... as expensive as things are today, I do not ever see that as an option.
Donahue wanting to pass immigration laws to include guest worker program simply dilutes the workforce by "securing access to cheap labor".
Part of the reason why labor is so expensive is the additional fees, taxes, employer matching fees, Social Security and Worker's Comp.
A rough estimate an employee whose wage is $7.50 an hour, would NET approximately five dollars an hour [depending on deductions] and costs the employer over $10 an hour.
So, if you want cheaper labor... reduce the overhead to employers and allow them to hire more people, which would put more money into the economy and the tax base.

Finally -- in my opinion this type of thinking that the US cannot do anything without "cheap labor" makes us look like a bunch of helpless wimps unable to take care of ourselves. Actually if you stop and think about it, it was the same mentality that we had about slavery.

The other argument regarding immigration is "the lack of qualified educated workers in the United States." Based on my experience in my training for my associates degree, I'll have to agree that the educational system sucks.

50% of my classes have nothing to do with the major itself. They are required classes such as PE, human relations at work, etc., that are supposed to make me a "more rounded individual".

Therefore, I can see why students are graduating with very poor or little knowledge in their major but they are at least better rounded individuals.


Blogger MAX Redline said...

"50% of my classes have nothing to do with the major itself. They are required classes such as PE, human relations at work, etc., that are supposed to make me a "more rounded individual"."

LOL! That's why I never got a degree. My view was, "hey, look - it's my money, not yours, so you don't get to tell me what to do with it!"

I bypassed PE and so-so-ology; opting to spend my money on graduate studies that actually had something to do with my interest. I don't need some college wonk to make me into a "well-rounded" induhvidual. Look around: There are obese people everywhere. If I want to become "well-rounded", I'll do what they seem to have done for a lot less money: eat at McDonald's every day.

Frankly, I looked at the headline on your post and just scratched my head. "United States faces severe worker shortage in the future".

Far as I can tell, they don't want severe workers; they want everyone to be stupid and happy. It's not as though there's a big market for thoughtful, serious workers in the USA right now....


3:57 PM  
Blogger Dare!PDX said...

One thing I've noticed lately is how many of the illegal immigrants demand top dollar for their skills. You'll attempt to hire someone whose mechanically inclined to work and a warehouse and most of the American's coming through the door don't have the skills to get the job dones. I have friends in my industry who confirm that they have employees they expect are fraudulently here, $15 an hour because its the only way they can get anyone capable of doing the job. One friendly competitor of mine went to automatic transmissions on all his trucks in order to ease his ability to train the manual laborers he had to drive (all of them are hispanic).

Whats the reason - Americans are all caught up in certification instead of actually doing. Trucking schools and other trade schools are kinda funny to me. Most of the people I know working in the skilled trades picked it up because of proximaty to friends or family around these trades. As for hight tech - most people I know in that took to it naturally and tested out of school for certifcation.

We need an emphasis on entry level training at the 14-18 age level. Think about how children under 16 can't handle machinery even though the skill is critical and only at that age can many afford to be in training. It bugs me how many younger people (and hey I'm only 31) don't think they are capable of doing anything. No knowledge of how to turn a wrench, frame and measure for construction, etc....

Thats the real reason we have a labor shortage. (That and the fact that alot of younger America is incapable of passing a urine analysis test to get employed even if they have the skills).

5:28 PM  
Anonymous RP said...

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