Quick Frays: WANTED:Blue Collared Americans…

I for one have very little respect for what all the humps call green jobs. The definition is more slogan than reality or more importantly the perceived reality. For instance if you are the person who screws in CFL’s at your place of work your job is deemed “green”. Somehow I think people who pushed for a higher order of greenness expected something else.

Other truly green jobs will be lost though if Americans don’t wake up to the educational needs of potential workers. America has gobbled the goo that it is all about college for junior and that is killing us. America needs to revisit the reality that blue-collar jobs are real and good and that the 21st Century has a varied amount of them. These jobs have new century twists on old-time faves like machinists,welders and painters and we need these folks. These jobs pay well too and have the potential to assure American manufacturing doesn’t disappear from our collective history.

A good article at City Journal

Definition reality at BLS here



  1. College is all fine and dandy, but the fact of the matter is that tradespeople keep the country going. Then there is the fact that you can now get at least an associates in just about anything.

    Then there is the situation of people getting what amounts to a useless degree. I listened for hours on end to a guy that got a degree in “world religion” That couldn’t figure out why he couldn’t find work in the higher rungs of corporate America. Then he got all PO’d at me when I asked why he didn’t apply his time toward something a little more productive such as a degree in engineering or business…

    Much more is the question of why couldn’t people such as the one that I noted above go through an apprenticeship in a real trade? It can’t be the money. I mean, after all, a Journeyman Plumber makes a lot more then most college graduates do…

  2. Tex Taylor says:

    Speaking as someone more “degreed” than he ever dreamed, there is nothing I have found more overrated than higher education. Looking back, I learned more critical thinking skills in five summers and Christmas Break of working in a steel fabrication shop than I ever did in ten plus years of college. The closest I came to critical thinking were “projects” while obtaining my MBA.

    Mind you, I’m not talking about professional education – just your standard four year and master’s degrees.

    Tell you Alfie. Had I been fortunate enough to have had boys (I didn’t), I would have absolutely no problem and would have encouraged a son about heading to the local vo-tech to learn a trade profession. Doing rudimentary trim work this week while fixing a bay window, it occurred to me that real trim carpentry work is a dying skill – one I wish I had been taught formally, rather than trial and error.

    And plumbing or heating and air? You could make a small fortune if you were capable.

  3. Alfie says:

    I hear ya Tex. I did all total about half of the time one needs for a plumbers apprentice and found the work enjoyable and educating and not just on the work skills level.My civilian path though eventually steered towards emergency medicine (911 work) and safety/risk management work.
    But absolutely America and Americans are losing out on good jobs in the trades and the “new”trades that are begging for specially trained but not BS/BA + folks and we’re ignoring it to our peril. China and Germany are not!

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