“Like technological change, globalization has reinforced the shift away from lower-skilled jobs that require less education to higher-skilled jobs that require college and advanced degrees,” she said. “The jobs that globalization creates in the United States, serving a global economy of billions of people, are more likely to be filled by those who, like you, have secured the advantage of higher education.”
In short, in a competitive world, to just tread water, we need to reach a higher level of education and rack up more student loans. No wonder everyone is so stressed.
Even as she acknowledged higher debt levels, Ms. Yellen said the benefits of a college degree outweigh the costs.
“Some of you may be worried about paying off loans you have taken out to pay for your education,” she said. “The good news is that the vast majority of student borrowers who complete their degrees find work that allows them to keep up with their payments and pay off their loans.”
That’s great, as long as you graduate and do so in a field that’s employable. There’s a world of difference in being a chemical engineer vs say an art history major.
Yellen does throw a bone to those being left behind.
“It concerns me, as it should concern all of us, that many are falling behind,” she said. “Improvements in elementary and secondary education can help prepare more people for college and the opportunities college makes available, but for those who do not attend college, we must find other ways to extend economic opportunity to everyone in America.”
The problem is that people are fundamentally lazy and entitled. Those who work hard and hustle do so quietly. They get an education, move to the big cities where the jobs are, and start climbing the ranks. Or they start their own small business. Those who yell a bit louder want more freebies handed to them. Just look at what Trump promised (to bring the old high paying manufacturing jobs back) vs what Clinton promised (to subsidize retraining programs in new areas like nursing and IT). How many old fat miners and truckers with chronic back pain addicted to opioids are willing to go through the rigours of retraining?