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Old 11-19-2013, 07:36 AM   #1
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Old 11-19-2013, 08:11 AM   #2
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I think the article is plain "horse-hockey." They talk about the baby boomers not retiring at 65 and opening up jobs for the young. First, only the first two or three years of boomers are 65 or older. Second, the skill levels of the unemployed youngsters are pretty poor overall.
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:14 AM   #3
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I suspect the skill levels of the unemployed youngesters in the 1960s was equally poor, but it was the middle of the largest economic expansion in US history and they could get jobs and learn skills on the job. The unemployment rate was around 3-4%when the early boomers entered the workforce. No multi-month unpaid internships in that kind of economic climate.
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:20 AM   #4
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First, only the first two or three years of boomers are 65 or older.
That's always been the case has it not? that the media takes the first wave of boomers and applies their behavior to the rest of the boomers.

The other thing the article misses are 1) illness of workers makes them leave the workforce earlier; 2) the proverbial BS bucket is not even considered in the article; 3) who really wants a bunch of cranky old 70 year old people mucking up the office - I can't imagine that their management team putting up with that for 15 years. I certainly will be cranky if I'm still working at 70!
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:56 AM   #5
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I suspect the skill levels of the unemployed youngesters in the 1960s was equally poor, but it was the middle of the largest economic expansion in US history and they could get jobs and learn skills on the job. The unemployment rate was around 3-4%when the early boomers entered the workforce. No multi-month unpaid internships in that kind of economic climate.
+1, companies taking a short term view and being unwilling to provide entry level training for new grads is creating less opportunities and/or at least contributing to under employment. This trend seems to have become more pronounced starting in 2008.
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:56 AM   #6
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3) who really wants a bunch of cranky old 70 year old people mucking up the office - I can't imagine that their management team putting up with that for 15 years. I certainly will be cranky if I'm still working at 70!
My department is about 10% over 70. One is over 80. They are the go-to experts for the complicated issues. Most of our 20-somethings couldn't pour piss out of a boot with the instructions on the sole. It's not that they're stupid. They just don't have the experience.

As for why they (or even I) are still working is anyone's guess. I will say there is an almost non-existent BS bucket here.
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Old 11-19-2013, 10:04 AM   #7
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I suspect the skill levels of the unemployed youngesters in the 1960s was equally poor, but it was the middle of the largest economic expansion in US history and they could get jobs and learn skills on the job. The unemployment rate was around 3-4%when the early boomers entered the workforce. No multi-month unpaid internships in that kind of economic climate.
Yep -- that's the thing. Back in the 1960s they something called "on-the-job training" which doesn't exist today. Plus, back then you could get a decent job out of high school. It's apples and oranges comparing today's youth to those of 50 years ago.
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Old 11-19-2013, 10:13 AM   #8
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I suspect the skill levels of the unemployed youngesters in the 1960s was equally poor, but it was the middle of the largest economic expansion in US history and they could get jobs and learn skills on the job. The unemployment rate was around 3-4%when the early boomers entered the workforce. No multi-month unpaid internships in that kind of economic climate.
We need a different set of skills now. In the 1960s there were a lot of "employment opportunities" in SE Asia. There was also many semi-skilled jobs in manufacturing that have either morphed overseas or now require a higher skill level. I don't think the US has enough people available with the educational background of quality HS and college degrees needed even if we started bringing more manufacturing operations back to the US.

I've seen the basic education level required to become a refinery or chemical plant operator go from where any HS grad could learn on the job to where a resonable amount of math and science background is needed to be able to understand the training. When I was involved in the process, more than half the people that took our "certified race/sex neutral" screening test failed. We had no problem finding enough qualified candidates and most of the training was "on the job." There was just no reason to have to give remedial training for things they should have learned in a basic HS education.
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Old 11-19-2013, 10:24 AM   #9
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We need a different set of skills now. In the 1960s there were a lot of "employment opportunities" in SE Asia. There was also many semi-skilled jobs in manufacturing that have either morphed overseas or now require a higher skill level. I don't think the US has enough people available with the educational background of quality HS and college degrees needed even if we started bringing more manufacturing operations back to the US.
I don't know. I think some of this is a convenient excuse that employers use to send jobs overseas or import cheap labor on H1-B visas.

That said, there is a problem with how we educate the next generation -- especially in an era when education is seen as little more than job training.
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Old 11-19-2013, 10:30 AM   #10
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I will say there is an almost non-existent BS bucket here.
no BS bucket = life is good
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Old 11-19-2013, 10:40 AM   #11
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People tend to forget that many elderly workers have to work because they do not have a choice. Their work often is not full-time, nor the same type of work that they did in their earlier career. But then, what is new? Japan is the nation leading the way for developed nations.

The OP's article says that workers aged 60+ comprised 6.5% of the workforce in 1985, but that will increase to 11.2% in 2015.

A similar article on Japan's situation said that workers of age 60+ already made up 20% of the workforce in 2012.

See Japan hits record high numbers of workers above age 60 - The Japan Daily Press
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:08 AM   #12
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I don't know. I think some of this is a convenient excuse that employers use to send jobs overseas or import cheap labor on H1-B visas.

That said, there is a problem with how we educate the next generation -- especially in an era when education is seen as little more than job training.
I can only speak from my present situation. We have many H-1B visa engineers. We used to make extensive campus recruiting efforts that were usually unsuccessful except for foreign students looking for H-1B visas. I don't think we pay as well as the major operating companies but compensation is bargain basement either. Most new grads are enticed to the more exciting mega-corp pitches. We pay OT.

From dealing with my own kids, schools do not push students to take the math and science classes which are important to keep many of the lucrative, high demand career options open. These could be out of college or crafts. I had one HS councilor tell me my daughter shouldn't take algebra in 8th grade because it may have hurt her self-esteem. I didn't really give a rats behind about that. My daughter could get all the self-esteem she needed by getting an A in the class. No 8th grade algebra and then no HS calculus.
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:09 AM   #13
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no BS bucket = life is good
I'm tired of the commute. The books on tape are nice but they're getting old.
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:10 AM   #14
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The OP's article says that workers aged 60+ comprised 6.5% of the workforce in 1985, but that will increase to 11.2% in 2015.
They neglect to say what percentage of the population is 60+. That has gone up dramatically in both the US and Japan since 1985.
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:37 AM   #15
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The article is from the NY Post, of course it is garbage. That thing is just about useful for lining the bottom of a birdcage.
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Old 11-19-2013, 11:44 AM   #16
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"By putting off retirement the Baby Boomers are a large reason for the high levels of unemployment for those looking to enter the workforce."

Total bull crap! I just don't see this happening unless I go into McDonalds where high school kids are working side by side with 70 something. And I don't think that's what the quote refers to.
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Old 11-19-2013, 12:17 PM   #17
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Nothing would hurt more than quitting your job and the company doesn't replace you
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Old 11-19-2013, 12:27 PM   #18
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Nothing would hurt more than quitting your job and the company doesn't replace you
This is unfortunately becoming a lot more common than it used to be. And the remaining workers start working 60 hours a week instead of 50 hours as they have to absorb more work. (And they are salaried, of course, so they don't get more pay for it, either.)
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Old 11-19-2013, 12:28 PM   #19
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Nothing would hurt more than quitting your job and the company doesn't replace you
Didn't bother me one bit...
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Old 11-19-2013, 12:36 PM   #20
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They neglect to say what percentage of the population is 60+. That has gone up dramatically in both the US and Japan since 1985.
Very true.

From Wikipedia:
"The ageing of Japan is thought to outweigh all other nations, as the country is purported to have the highest proportion of elderly citizens ...

In 1989, 11.6% of the population was 65 years or older, with projections that 25.6% of the population would be over 65 by 2030. As of February 2011, 23.1% of the population are 65 and over."
The doubling of elderly workers roughly matches the doubling of their population percentage. So, what we can conclude is that not all people fully retire after 65, and this has always been true. However, as there are more elderly workers in public places, they become more visible.

I have seen many people in retirement age working in grocery stores doing less physically demanding jobs such as giving out samples, checking for outdated stocks, reshelving items, etc... I do not think it is so bad for people with good health to still be productive and earn some additional money to supplement their SS. Many of them seem to be in good spirits when they interact with shoppers. It beats staying glued to a slot machine in smoke-filled casinos, as I see it.
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