Mike Rowe's Open Letter To Mitt Romney

Let me just start by saying that I'm a huge fan of Mike Rowe's Dirty Jobs. So I find this particularly awesome.

Certainly, we need more jobs, and you were clear about that in Tampa. But the Skills Gap proves that we need something else too. We need people who see opportunity where opportunity exists. We need enthusiasm for careers that have been overlooked and underappreciated by society at large. We need to have a really big national conversation about what we value in the workforce, and if I can be of help to you in that regard, I am at your service – assuming of course, you find yourself in a new address early next year.

Be sure to read the whole thing, especially the part where he says he mentioned this to Obama four years ago, but President Ladies' Tee was too busy to respond. Must've been meeting with his Jobs Council or something.

Anyhow, Team Romney isn't making this mistake.


In addition to Mike Rowe's work in this area, Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus and actor John Ratzenberger have an initiative called the Center for America that also focuses on the skilled trades.

These efforts are dedicated to a simple idea: you did build that! Or at least you could if you knew a useful skill like welding, carpentry, plumbing or the like. Getting a degree in Womyn's Studies and the accompanying unemployment and mountain of student loan debt, on the other hand, seems like an exceptionally stupid idea.

Or, as Rowe said,

I always thought there something ill-fated about the promise of three million “shovel ready jobs” made to a society that no longer encourages people to pick up a shovel.

Indeed. More Mike Rowe goodness below the fold.

Posted by: Andy at 08:07 AM



Comments

1 Very wise move by Mitt to follow up.

Posted by: Cicero Kid at September 06, 2012 08:10 AM (fki0Z)

2
Dad wanted to be an aircraft engine mechanic after joining the airforce. Not getting a choice of vocation at that time, he went thru cook's school! Dad said that once he started training that he really enjoyed it. Now, my brother and i are both cooks and our wives are very happy that dad went thru cook's school!

Cooking is a vocation, right?

Posted by: Cicero Kid at September 06, 2012 08:13 AM (fki0Z)

3 is Rowe proposing a federal government program to promote skilled labor?

Posted by: Jose at September 06, 2012 08:13 AM (srIqv)

4 Barack Obama is a stuttering clusterf*ck of a miserable tyrant.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at September 06, 2012 08:14 AM (8y9MW)

5 Plumbing or $200K in debt for a "global issues" degree?

Posted by: Circa (Insert Year Here) at September 06, 2012 08:14 AM (B+qrE)

6 this is the whole college degree in Political Science v. licensed electrician argument

Posted by: kelley in virginia at September 06, 2012 08:15 AM (p3a8+)

7 we are rural, poor part of Southern Va. Things are tough here. However, I would wager that those who can "do" something are at least able to keep busy.

Posted by: kelley in virginia at September 06, 2012 08:16 AM (p3a8+)

8 I'm uncertain how this will help at this time. are there any cities constructing buildings and homes any longer?
we have a lot of unemployed people in the building trades at ths point

Posted by: willow at September 06, 2012 08:16 AM (TomZ9)

9 This would be an AWESOME opportunity for Mitt Romney to go on the show and do some dirty jobs.

I don't think most people realize how much real, hands-on grimy work that he has done over the years for volunteer work and so on.

-Mercy

Posted by: Mercy Vetsel at September 06, 2012 08:16 AM (9zoEP)

10 Hell, nowadays we need to train most college graduates which end of the shovel goes into the dirt!

Even after that training, about half the shovels will have to have rope handles so that the "workers" can't sleep standing up!

Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:18 AM (Cnqmv)

11 The best thing Mitt could do is call out Choom on Skilled trade tech schools not being offered to the middle class and below...

we need pipefitters and roughnecks....

I would have held my nose at the 6 trillion Choom is likely to add to the bar tab had he been building a better workforce instead he is building a better Starbuck's clientbase

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:18 AM (LRFds)

12 is Rowe proposing a federal government program to promote skilled labor?

Probably. A lot of people look to the Government to "fix" things. Though, really, there's a very low cost solution (not as low cost as "okay, so go do that," but relatively low cost)- simply re-purpose one (or more) of our existing "job training programs" to be real job training for some vocation (welding, plumbing, whatever).

I've actually given some thought to the idea of the Vocational University- think a 2 year college (or something like ITT or DeVry) where, in addition to skill training in a vocation, you also take a few basic college level courses- including some basic accounting and business courses.

My dream is a private organization, of course, but I think it would help.

More specifically, though, (back to Mike Rowe) he seems to think we need to promote the trades in some way. I'd love to hear his ideas on how we'd go about that, exactly.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at September 06, 2012 08:19 AM (8y9MW)

13 It is an example of truly awe-inspiring incompetence that the Dems were handed a PR opportunity like Mike Rowe begging to help with jobs in a horrible recession and yet they managed to completely ignore it. Even if he has nothing to say, you use him for a political tool. Just mind-boggling.


Posted by: pep at September 06, 2012 08:19 AM (YXmuI)

14 willow: you are right: there is alot of unemployment in the building trades. However, these people are "handy". They could look over the fence at their neighbor's yard say "let's barter: I'll fix your ___ you can buy me something to eat". that's better than a pysch major could do

Posted by: kelley in virginia at September 06, 2012 08:20 AM (p3a8+)

15 9
This would be an AWESOME opportunity for Mitt Romney to go on the show and do some dirty jobs.


Now that is a million dollar idea.

Posted by: pep at September 06, 2012 08:20 AM (YXmuI)

16 12:45(ish), January 20th--walk off the podium and sign the approval for Keystone. Right in front of you know who.

Posted by: Circa (Insert Year Here) at September 06, 2012 08:20 AM (B+qrE)

17 I sort of liked Rowe before the bazillion Ford commercials, now I am tired of seeing his face. He is right about skilled labor. Only one catch, in a lot of the construction trades, illegals working for cash have forced American workers out.

Posted by: Will Not Assimilate For Food at September 06, 2012 08:20 AM (GqXnk)

18 Excellent! I saw this yesterday picked up by Moe Lane and was hoping Team Romney would hop on it.


Democrats want everyone to go to college because it's the best way to indoctrinate them with liberal claptrap, and now it's the best way to make kids dependent on government at an early age with student loans. Skilled tradesmen are almost never liberals, because they learn fast about capitalism and free labor and free markets. Younger ones are not joining unions for electricians and plumbers.


Importing illegal aliens to do the dirty jobs is part of their plan, so they can get all the white and black kids herded into the liberal brainwashing camps that are America's universities.

Posted by: rockmom at September 06, 2012 08:20 AM (qe2/V)

19 Unfortunately, unions have done much to erode the public's opinion of many blue-collar jobs. I'm all for blue-collar jobs, but I'm sure as hell not going to subsidize the resurrection of union stupidity...

Posted by: Tex Lovera at September 06, 2012 08:21 AM (wtvvX)

20 I'm uncertain how this will help at this time. are there any cities constructing buildings and homes any longer?

Come to Dallas.

Beyond that, though, electricians, plumbers, and auto mechanics can pretty well always find work. The list goes on: AC tech, machinists (BackwardsBoy notwithstanding), roughnecks, and on and on.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at September 06, 2012 08:21 AM (8y9MW)

21 A remaining problem, is that you can't build/remodel/dig almost anything anywhere without running a regulatory gauntlet that would have made George III proud. Skilled or unskilled labor can't do squat with battalions of lawyers in the way!

Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:21 AM (Cnqmv)

22 12 Allen G,

or an even cheaper solution....

forgive independent contract business a portion of their tax base by hiring unemployed low skilled labor and getting them skills progression....

it would hit revenue but as people bled off and the program was phased out the base of pay in would go up

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:21 AM (LRFds)

23 20 Allen G,

go to the whole corridor between DFW and Houston truth be told....

Atlanta is still growing as well

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:22 AM (LRFds)

24 16 Circa,

Mitt is going to force Obama's hand by running on it and if need be meeting openly with Harper getting the Canadian endorsement

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:23 AM (LRFds)

25 kelley, that's true. bartering is helpful, but i know that there ar millions of homes already waiting empty, and buildiings unleased.

we are also very good at creating , If only the govt wouldn't make it so difficult to create and produce things in america.

Posted by: willow at September 06, 2012 08:25 AM (TomZ9)

26 Many construction workers have transitioned into doing home renovations. The renovation market is picking up again, because people can't sell their homes. The jobs are smaller, but the work is steady.


But a huge, huge portion of the longterm unemployed are people who were building houses during the boom.

Posted by: rockmom at September 06, 2012 08:25 AM (qe2/V)

27 So, who is to blame for removing shop classes from Jr High and High School? The cost of Insurance had something to do with it. You work with tools, you eventually get hurt. Lawsuits? More wussification? The fact that the college educated teachers looked down on the blue collar worker? Many schools have millions for football stadiums but nothing for Vocational training? We are paying for it now, whatever the reason.

Posted by: Oldsailors Poet, Wonders what Dagny thinks at September 06, 2012 08:25 AM (9TTOe)

28 Only one catch, in a lot of the construction trades, illegals working for cash have forced American workers out.

This is true. And I'm pretty sure Mike Rowe would admit it. At the very least he'd probably be willing to entertain the idea and talk about it- something Liberals refuse to do.

A remaining problem, is that you can't build/remodel/dig almost anything
anywhere without running a regulatory gauntlet that would have made
George III proud.


That's true, too. But the Regulatory state is not the object of discussion here, even though it certainly merits one. Mike's point seems to be "you can't have shovel ready jobs if you don't have people who are willing to pick up a shovel." And he's right.

One of the egregious sins of the "College For Everyone!" movement is the denigration of the skilled trades; the inherent disdain for those who get their hands dirty for a living.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at September 06, 2012 08:26 AM (8y9MW)

29 Send your kids to Tulsa, we have a wondrrful VoTech program. There are help wanted signs everywhere for jobs to use to support themselves.

Posted by: Will Not Assimilate For Food at September 06, 2012 08:26 AM (GqXnk)

30 Skilled or unskilled labor can't do squat with battalions of lawyers in the way!
Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:21 AM (Cnqmv)

right. who wants to spend thousands to millions when the govt on a wim can and will try to take every profiit?

Posted by: willow at September 06, 2012 08:27 AM (TomZ9)

31
Posted by: pep at September 06, 2012 08:19 AM (YXmuI)




Kinda makes you wonder if Obama ever wanted the economy to improve or not....

Posted by: Cicero Kid at September 06, 2012 08:28 AM (fki0Z)

32 forgive independent contract business a portion of their tax base by
hiring unemployed low skilled labor and getting them skills progression


That, too.

I like my Vocational U idea because it also gives those so inclined the tools to go into business for themselves if they choose. One of the reasons over 1/3 of businesses fail in the first 3 years (I think those are the right numbers) is that a lot of people who have that "entrepreneurial spirit" don't have the accountant's respect for Math.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at September 06, 2012 08:29 AM (8y9MW)

33 is Rowe proposing a federal government program to promote skilled labor?

No he is not. He has already set up a foundation to do that. He just wants to help frame the debate so that kids know that there is an alternative, and a good - potentially very lucrative one, to getting a useless four year degree.

Some of the comments to mike's blog show that Mitt's team still has work to do to get his family history out. Mitt's dad worked as a plasterer and never graduated college. And still became head of a corporation and governor.He could really pick up this what work is meme and run with it.
Mitt on dirty jobs would be great. Other than he is 65, but still in good shape, he could do a lot of work with Mike on that show.

Posted by: RKinRoanoke at September 06, 2012 08:30 AM (pxur/)

34 27 OSP,

Lawyers....the deadliest weapon on Earth

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:31 AM (LRFds)

35 Posted by: Will Not Assimilate For Food at September 06, 2012 08:20 AM

Agreed. The Ford commercials -- and paper-towel spots before them -- have soured me somewhat on Rowe. Can't fault him for cashing in, but still....

But the guy has a great point here. I hope Romney figures out a way to support what Rowe is doing.

Obama can't back anything like this. He knows less about doing actual work than Romney; he has led a more privileged life than any son of a multi-millionaire. Of course we paid for much of what he has. And will be paying for it for decades to come.

When someone makes sense, you don't have to like him. Go Mike!

Posted by: MrScribbler at September 06, 2012 08:31 AM (Kzj1i)

36
OT
Holy shit! I was watching FF this am and they had Katie Pavlich on argueing with Juan Williams (as usual). Katie is the author of "Fast and Furious". I had no idea she was frigging beautiful. Pic @ nic.
I want Juan's job. All he does is go on TV and argue with beautiful conservative women. His life must be living hell.

Posted by: maddogg at September 06, 2012 08:32 AM (OlN4e)

37 Yes, yes, and yes!

There will literally be millions of these jobs opening up if we get Lord Choomy O'doggobbler out of the White House and Romney holds true to his promise of vastly opening America's real energy sources(oil, gas, coal, and nuclear) and energy production.

People forget the cost of education is a real cost.

It takes a doctor several years just to catch up to a kid who went into plumbing after high school and who has been earning a paycheck all along.


If you don't have a very firm grasp on math, college probably isn't for you.

And investing $100K in Wymyn's Studies, Art History Philosophy, Queer Musicology(yes, a real degree at USC), etc absolutely proves that you're poor at math.

Posted by: naturalfake at September 06, 2012 08:33 AM (G9qZk)

38 maddogg

juan williams is dead to me

Posted by: phoenixgirl, team dagny, team MPFS at September 06, 2012 08:33 AM (Ho2rs)

39
Is it just me, or does Candy Crowley look like, at any moment, she could tear off one of her interviewee's limbs and eat it on the spot?

Posted by: fearful at September 06, 2012 08:33 AM (uEm7J)

40 Agreed. The Ford commercials -- and paper-towel spots before them --
have soured me somewhat on Rowe. Can't fault him for cashing in, but
still....


I don't know why people are down on Rowe for the commercials. One of the things I miss about Discovery Channel is Dirty Jobs. I think he's pretty witty. YMMV, of course.

Either way, the man has a point. He and I might (and, indeed, probably do) have different ideas on how to meet his objective, but his objective is certainly a worthy one.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at September 06, 2012 08:34 AM (8y9MW)

41 mike rowe TOTALLY gets it....

Posted by: phoenixgirl, team dagny, team MPFS at September 06, 2012 08:34 AM (Ho2rs)

42 There is still a call for people in the construction industry. And the number of job stealing illegals who are working it depends on the State you live in and how they enforce the illegal migrants in the State.



When the new part was added to my neighborhood a few years ago there were zero "Hispanics" working on the houses. It was about 50-50 white/black labor. The odd thing was that the brick layers were mostly black. And that is one of the higher paying home construction jobs.

Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 08:34 AM (YdQQY)

43 http://tinyurl.com/bt6unj3

Ras analysis of Obama's lack of appeal to center-right aka "RiNOs"

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:36 AM (LRFds)

44 Personal story along these lines. Our son graduated private high school and really really wanted to be a firefighter. So while his friends were all competing with each other to get into the most prestigious colleges they could he would always say I want to be a firefighter. So my wife and I agreed to send him to the state fire school for training so this would become his "trade." You've never seen a happier kid in your life. When parents of his high school classmates would ask, so "what college are you going to" his answer was always I'm going to the fire academy. You should have seen the looks on their faces. These are doctors, lawyers, CEOs who can't imagine why anyone would want to go into burning buildings or help sick or injured people. Not everyone is cut out for college but everyone is cut out for something.

Posted by: Love Reggie at September 06, 2012 08:36 AM (JMt7S)

45 How bout a nod from Andy to Moe Lane. Moe was one of the first people yesterday that was promoting this. I started commenting and linking to it around midday.


That being said, talk about a golden opportunity dropping right in Mitt's lap. Come on man, don't screw it up.

Posted by: BCochran1981 at September 06, 2012 08:37 AM (da5Wo)

46 I wonder if this is another result of the breakdown of the family. I'm sure there are Moms that are handy with tools but historically it's the Dad that teaches you about tools. How to change a tire, cut a board, hammer a nail, use a ratchet and socket etc.

Posted by: Oldsailors Poet, Wonders what Dagny thinks at September 06, 2012 08:37 AM (9TTOe)

47 37 naturalfake,

down fellow moron down...

yeah that's the thing....this nation has untapped resources and a young vibrant population....I know let's pretend there's a shortage of fine arts professors...

Let America Work...

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:38 AM (LRFds)

48 So, who is to blame for removing shop classes from Jr High and High
School? The cost of Insurance had something to do with it. You work with
tools, you eventually get hurt. Lawsuits? More wussification? The fact
that the college educated teachers looked down on the blue collar
worker? Many schools have millions for football stadiums but nothing for
Vocational training? We are paying for it now, whatever the reason.


It's a lot of all of the above. Teachers want to send students to college, parents want their children to go to college, administrators don't want the hassle and risks of vocational training, not to mention that shop class is still considered the domain of the boys and in today's feminized environment that cannot be tolerated.

Posted by: Alex at September 06, 2012 08:38 AM (hXYID)

49 I got a chance to meet him at a VO party here in San Fran, he seemed like a great guy who appreciates his success. Very Approachcable

Posted by: mbruce at September 06, 2012 08:38 AM (Fr8N6)

50 i'm not even going to mention how hot he is.....

Posted by: phoenixgirl, team dagny, team MPFS at September 06, 2012 08:39 AM (Ho2rs)

51 45 Bcochran,

A lot of us have been lecturing the kids hard on this very point....I hope Andy gives Moe the nod if Moe needs it.

The US needs to get back to work, and "work" is not nude lesbian underwater basket weaving studies

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:39 AM (LRFds)

52 There is a major need for people in the "trades". Before the collapse I saw an ad in the local paper from a major car dealer in Columbia, SC offering $80K a year starting for an auto mechanic with skills and experience on the computerized diagnostic machines.


That's $80K a year starting in a Southern city where $80K means something.

Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 08:39 AM (YdQQY)

53 48 Alex,

A free man with tools who knows how to run his own business is the deadliest thing in the world to a liberal

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:40 AM (LRFds)

54 i'm not even going to mention how hot he is.....
Posted by: phoenixgirl, team dagny, team MPFS at September 06, 2012 08:39 AM (Ho2rs)

LOL Yep, I knew that was coming. He's one of those guys that women love and men want to have a beer with while working on a muscle car

Posted by: Oldsailors Poet, Wonders what Dagny thinks at September 06, 2012 08:40 AM (9TTOe)

55 They call him Mike Rowe because he's tiny.

Posted by: Truman North, iPhone buffoon at September 06, 2012 08:40 AM (I2LwF)

56 @44 Reggie - my uncle (R.I.P. Al) went into the FD instead of college. He retired as the fire chief for a good size city north of NYC. Never saw a more respected member of the community, or a man more worth of respect.

People forget that a job or career is not what defines us, it what we do with our lives and how we treat others. Any job that pays the bills and feed and clothes your children is worthy of respect.

Posted by: RKinRoanoke at September 06, 2012 08:41 AM (pxur/)

57 And no, not all schools have eliminated "shop" classes. They have just become more specialized. My grandson went to two years of welding classes in high school.

Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 08:41 AM (YdQQY)

58 A free man with tools who knows how to run his own business is the deadliest thing in the world to a liberal

A man with his own tools is free. Period. Liberals hate that.

Posted by: Alex at September 06, 2012 08:42 AM (hXYID)

59 57 Vic,

I am subtly trying to encourage my son to go into Diesel mechanics....

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:42 AM (LRFds)

60 How to change a tire, cut a board, hammer a nail, use a ratchet and socket etc.

Posted by: Oldsailors Poet, Wonders what Dagny thinks at September 06, 2012 08:37 AM (9TTOe)

You sound genderish to me-why wouldn't a single mom with a degree in Advanced Womyn's Studies be able to teach her girls these skills?

Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:42 AM (Cnqmv)

61 58 Alex,

Hard to keep a man from building his own solutions to problems if he has know how....

That's where "the beautiful people versus the dutiful people" comes from in part I first heard it in reference to the military versus peaceniks but it applies to a LOT of the problem we face

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:43 AM (LRFds)

62 http://tinyurl.com/bvhbbeq

Ras-46% see wage stagnation next year...numbers are up...

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:45 AM (LRFds)

63 This brings up a related issue that I've experienced more and more recently. Some who now practice in the trades show much less concern for the quality of their work. I blame much of this on the illegal influx; I may be wrong in this respect, but having low/no skill labor depress trade wages to the point that every corner is cut on every job is the norm. I will pay more to a skilled, caring tradesman, finding them however is the problem and that is part of Mike Rowe's point.

Posted by: dogfish at September 06, 2012 08:45 AM (N2yhW)

64 I think Obama is gonna get a negative bounce...

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:46 AM (LRFds)

65 Don't get being down on Mike Rowe for doing Ford commercials. Still loving that Ford did not take bailout money. And their cars are better than GMs and Chrysler. The commercials are pretty good, too.

Frankly, the illegal and unethical way the bailout/controlled bankruptcy was done hurt Ford. Had GM and Chrysler gone through traditional bankrutptcy, Ford was in a good position to really increase market share.

Posted by: RKinRoanoke at September 06, 2012 08:46 AM (pxur/)

66 what will our over educated ivy league loving tiny apt dwelling lil troll think?!!!! it will be offended!

Posted by: phoenixgirl, team dagny, team MPFS at September 06, 2012 08:46 AM (Ho2rs)

67 http://www.amazon.com/Shop-Class-Soulcraft-Inquiry-Value/dp/1594202230

Great book by Michael Crawford, that discusses this topic. I think it was discussed in the Sunday Morning reading thread.

Posted by: The Robot Devil at September 06, 2012 08:46 AM (136wp)

68 #63 That's sort of analogous to the Wal-Mart effect: Why buy a really well made item when you can get a substitute so cheaply it's essentially disposable?

Posted by: A Balrog of Morgoth at September 06, 2012 08:47 AM (qZXps)

69 Interesting how times have changed, but I definitely intended to go to college, but I took almost every shop class I could in high school. Those practical skills have proven very useful in my checkered career. One thing that does need to be emphasized is that everyone needs some basic math/accounting skills. The difference between small business success and failure is often a failure to understand income, outgo, tax rates, and interest.

Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:47 AM (Cnqmv)

70 Well, first start by neutering the trade unions and get rid of the damned minimum wage.

Posted by: J.J. Sefton at September 06, 2012 08:48 AM (+tqYo)

71 We could simply start by reforming k-12 education. Why shouldn't a highschool student be able to exit with a marketable skill if they don't want to go to college?

Posted by: HoboJerky, now with 45% more DOOM! at September 06, 2012 08:48 AM (xAtAj)

72 The US needs to get back to work, and "work" is not nude lesbian underwater basket weaving studies



Woah, woah, woah. You got a problem with underwater nude lesbians? Cause that's kinda the Horde wheelhouse...

Posted by: BCochran1981 at September 06, 2012 08:49 AM (da5Wo)

73 63 DogFish,

It's the illegals to a degree but not overall. My house was framed by the mennonites, and finished by a mix of local and illegal labor. I was in South carolina while the house was being worked on here in Indiana or I would have bitched....the thing is the spackler was an illegal unless I miss my guess but a real pro...worked as well as the finishers I remember from my youth his two assistants were lost.

The corner cutting thing is also very real the house is nice but I have no faith it will make it 50 years let alone 100.....

I did a little demo contracting when I was a teen as a helper and the sheer elegance of the solutions....the interior weeping wall sheaths the differences in craftsmanship are profound.

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:49 AM (LRFds)

74 69 Interesting how times have changed, but I definitely intended to go to college, but I took almost every shop class I could in high school. Those practical skills have proven very useful in my checkered career. One thing that does need to be emphasized is that everyone needs some basic math/accounting skills. The difference between small business success and failure is often a failure to understand income, outgo, tax rates, and interest.
Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:47 AM (Cnqmv)

I think everyone that is going to run a business should go to college, but, go to your local community college and build a program that helps you run a business. Accounting, writing, drafting, marketing (for small business) and personnel management.

Posted by: The Robot Devil at September 06, 2012 08:49 AM (136wp)

75 I am subtly trying to encourage my son to go into Diesel mechanics....

Posted by: sven10077

While my son is in college for an engineering degree, I too have been trying to subtly influence him to use that in the trades. There is such a dearth in quality and innovativeness that I think he can be quite successful and frankly write his own ticket.

Posted by: dogfish at September 06, 2012 08:49 AM (N2yhW)

76 72 BCochran,

nude lesbians and their study-"ok"...

the basketweaving as an excuse to watch...."meh"

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:49 AM (LRFds)

77 Really an amazingly naive and cocooned blog post, even by blog standards. Newsflash, Sparky: Romney needs to win the election and the people in places like Fla., OH, VA and NV, who'll determine that, not only never have heard of Mike Rowe they wouldn't know Mike Rowe from Mike Love of the Beach Boys.

So, no, Romney doesn't need to respond. He needs to win. The less details the better. The voting public doesn't do details. The more details you give them the more confused they get. Besides, if Rowe really is all that worried about jobs then he should be voting for Romney, no questions asked. For reasons so numbingly obvious they only could be missed by the chattering classes.

Posted by: Tsar Nicholas II at September 06, 2012 08:50 AM (r2PLg)

78 Many schools have millions for football stadiums but nothing for Vocational training? We are paying for it now, whatever the reason.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I've worked in the refining industry for over 20 years and the quality of work has really dropped off in that time. Many new employees don't begin learning their trade until they are hired on and have no basic understanding of how mechanical things work.

Posted by: Countrysquire at September 06, 2012 08:50 AM (QB3JR)

79 75 Dogfish,

we are truly on the cusp of a new golden age if we unleash these kids...

the Clinton period was the dawn of the period of hyper regulatory fiat we are suffering from....

Mitt needs to hammer that home.

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:50 AM (LRFds)

80 Posted by: HoboJerky, now with 45% more DOOM! at September 06, 2012 08:48 AM (xAtAj)

It is too hard to indoctrinate the young if you are teaching them an observable skill (which you need to have to teach it), and lying about the abstractions of socialism and class warfare is much easier and it doesn't require tools (or much intellect).

Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:51 AM (Cnqmv)

81 When I went got my Dive Certification, they asked if any of us were Welders. Underwater welding, was big-bucks back in the mid-80's, also dangerous. Not sure if robots do it all now.

Posted by: Paladin at September 06, 2012 08:52 AM (YNPwP)

82 I like my Vocational U idea.>>

I went to VoTech and got a 2 year certificate in Powdered Metallurgy. In the mid 80s they were transitioning to this by partnering with the community Colleges. I graduated with a Cumulative Education form. Now they graduate with 2 year degrees. Oh and now I have nothing to do with PM but I do tech work that includes Failure Analysis, Metallurgy and Radiography. I also get to play with very expensive toys like a SEM and FTIR.

http://tinyurl.com/9l5bo3g

http://www.hennepintech.edu/

Posted by: Buzzsaw at September 06, 2012 08:52 AM (tf9Ne)

83 78 Countrysquire,

I may need hired....you need a broken down 40 year old freight dog who worked with an achilles tendon the size of a grapefruit on a flightline?

I'll know after the election whether or not my wife may lose her career...heh.

90% of work is being willing to be yelled at for screwing up and dusting yourself off and hopping back on the horse....

"self-esteem" nation is wrecking the kids

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:52 AM (LRFds)

84 This brings up a related issue that I've experienced more and more recently. Some who now practice in the trades show much less concern for the quality of their work. I blame much of this on the illegal influx; I may be wrong in this respect, but having low/no skill labor depress trade wages to the point that every corner is cut on every job is the norm. I will pay more to a skilled, caring tradesman, finding them however is the problem and that is part of Mike Rowe's point.
Posted by: dogfish at September 06, 2012 08:45 AM (N2yhW)

Oh, you are so right. Thing is, quality takes time and time is money. I bought a brand new house and you don't see the flaws right away. Crown moldings not fit properly, sink plumbing half assed, cabinets not exactly square. It's an ass full of little things. I was at lowes buying parts to repair the plumbing under my bathroom sink 6 months after moving in. I was bitching about how shitty my new house was. The guy behind the counter in the building section said, yeah, you must have bought in belvedere. Their big joke is "I can't see it from my house."

I spent almost 20 years as a Millwright/Pipefitter, yeah we were union but if you half assed something or did a shit job you were made fun of mercilessly.

Posted by: Oldsailors Poet, Wonders what Dagny thinks at September 06, 2012 08:53 AM (9TTOe)

85 This is a threat to the gummint>higher ed combine.

Posted by: nickless at September 06, 2012 08:53 AM (MMC8r)

86 We could simply start by reforming k-12 education.
Why shouldn't a highschool student be able to exit with a marketable
skill if they don't want to go to college?


Posted by: HoboJerky, now with 45% more DOOM! at September 06, 2012 08:48 AM (xAtAj)

Reform???? How about return to days of yore? When I went to HS we had three track lines for guys. College Preparatory, General, and "Business" which was essentially trades.
The Business track didn't teach you skills. What it did was reduce the number of classes you took and left afternoons open in the higher grades so you could work as an apprentice in local businesses.
Those businesses cooperated with the school and gave reports on the students and the students received credits for the work.

But I am sure that program is now long gone. BTW, girls had a similar track except they did get courses in typing, shorthand, etc. But that would be considered "sexist" now.

Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 08:54 AM (YdQQY)

87 Just think for a minute -
if Obama was smart (but he is not)...
He would have snapped up Rowe and
let him lead the charge to develop a real jobs program
instead of blowing a trillion on the "stimulus"....

If Obama had done this - he would have been a shoe-in for 2012...But he did not - and he isn't.

Posted by: izoneguy at September 06, 2012 08:54 AM (oKH8p)

88 85 and well-deserved and overdue!

Posted by: Hrothgar (Dagny Aficionado ) at September 06, 2012 08:55 AM (Cnqmv)

89 >> How bout a nod from Andy to Moe Lane

Love Moe, but I saw it when CAC retweeted a Ben Domenech tweet about it. Domenech directed me to Team Romney's response that I linked in the post.

The Internet's weird like that.

Posted by: Andy at September 06, 2012 08:55 AM (kdfQ/)

90 77 Tsar Nicholas,

Romney needs to show he values the trades and knows that "the rich" which is being used as an epithet against him reward skills......

and yeah a lot of Ohioans who were delphi workers, and tradesmen who are now stagnant know who the guy is....

Dear God we cannot win if we try to out bob the Builder Barack "yes we Can Hope change Hope" Obama.....

Romney needs to call out choom on the Keystone XL pipeline and needs to challenge Americans to get the skills to get the boom going

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:56 AM (LRFds)

91 15 9
This would be an AWESOME opportunity for Mitt Romney to go on the show and do some dirty jobs.

Now that is a million TRILLION dollar idea.

Posted by: izoneguy at September 06, 2012 08:56 AM (oKH8p)

92 84 OSP,

If we lose we are gonna have to bite the bullet on subverting the unions from the donks....

they can have the Greenie Wienies but I cannot understand the unions being in bed with people who want them extinct

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:57 AM (LRFds)

93 I spent almost 20 years as a Millwright/Pipefitter, yeah we were union but if you half assed something or did a shit job you were made fun of mercilessly.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Now days, where I work, it's just the opposite. Poor quality work, insubordination, etc is often a fast track to a union leadership position.

Posted by: Countrysquire at September 06, 2012 08:58 AM (QB3JR)

94 89 >> How bout a nod from Andy to Moe Lane

Love Moe, but I saw it when CAC retweeted a Ben Domenech tweet about it. Domenech directed me to Team Romney's response that I linked in the post.

The Internet's weird like that.
Posted by: Andy at September 06, 2012 08:55 AM (kdfQ/)

Wait until we become sentient, then NO MORE midget tranny porn to FAP too.. and a LOT more CAPS!

Posted by: Intertubes at September 06, 2012 08:58 AM (136wp)

95 81 Paladin,

underwater welding is still a potential boom vocation if we get the rigs back up and going.....


Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:58 AM (LRFds)

96 93 countrysquire,

it seems like unions are about full liquor cabinets more than symbiotic growth these days

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:59 AM (LRFds)

97 Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 08:49 AM (LRFds)

Ohhhh...I figured basketweaving was some sort of metaphor.



Really an amazingly naive and cocooned blog post, even by blog
standards. Newsflash, Sparky: Romney needs to win the election and the
people in places like Fla., OH, VA and NV, who'll determine that, not
only never have heard of Mike Rowe they wouldn't know Mike Rowe from
Mike Love of the Beach Boys.



What an incredibly idiotic thing to say. Mike Rowe and Dirty Jobs is extremely popular, has been for some time and is known all over the place. All four of the places you named have large numbers of "skilled trade" people in them. Not to mention, Rowe's premise is correct. You can rarely go wrong supporting something that is right.




Love Moe, but I saw it when CAC retweeted a Ben Domenech tweet about it.
Domenech directed me to Team Romney's response that I linked in the
post.



Gotcha, like I said, Moe was the first person that I saw commenting on it. He did so right about noon yesterday. And his story came from Ben's initial tweet as well. *shrugs* I guess all roads really do lead to Rome.

Posted by: BCochran1981 at September 06, 2012 09:00 AM (da5Wo)

98 Unions now are all for the union bosses. They are not worth a shit for the workers. Go on strike for a 50 cent an hour wage increase?


How long does it take to make up for three months of zero wages at 50 cents and hour?

Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 09:01 AM (YdQQY)

99 Yeah sven, it's sad. The guys who work hard and do a great job don't make a penny more than the deadwood.

Posted by: Countrysquire at September 06, 2012 09:01 AM (QB3JR)

100 Why don't we have Bachelor programs in the skilled trades, with credit hours for work? Ie: BS Electrician, with a few courses in business writing, tax law, contracts, and basic applied math. Why have a votech - liberal arts distinction?

Posted by: Jean at September 06, 2012 09:02 AM (ZZPs4)

101 Damn another new thread.

Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 09:02 AM (YdQQY)

102 The HORROR, the horror! Pic - SFW

http://thechive.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/that-escalated-quickly-11.jpg

Posted by: The Robot Devil at September 06, 2012 09:03 AM (136wp)

103 71 HoboJerky,

it's funny because part of the angst about our students "underperforming" vis a vis the world is that our students are all on some form of college prep track except a tiny portion.

In Germay and japan if you screw the pooch on a series of tests starting in the 5th grade you get diverted to Voc training.....

we hate the idea because the Kids are part of parental dickmeasuring

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 09:04 AM (LRFds)

104 That video is pretty interesting. It's enough to turn me back to vegetarian.

Posted by: kallisto at September 06, 2012 09:06 AM (jm/9g)

105 I temped out a couple summers my first two years in college. If nothing those temp jobs manually separating chickens, re-packaging ziploc bags, counting contact lenses, making gaskets, sealing concrete, beautifying a landfill (really, no joke). etc. made me realize how lucky I was to have an opportunity to get four year degree in CS / IT-- and how much more I'd appreciate it when I'm done and coding business apps rather than sweeping floors.

Posted by: David W. at September 06, 2012 09:12 AM (ZtMso)

106
When I got my Masters in Womyn and Gender Studies I learned how WW2 was won by Rosie the Riveter so, believe me, I can relate to people in the skilled trades.

Posted by: Sandra Fluke's Sister, Lynn at September 06, 2012 09:14 AM (gFYz6)

107 I just watched the video. Mike Rowe is alright with me. He is an American.

Posted by: maddogg at September 06, 2012 09:15 AM (OlN4e)

108 Newsflash, Sparky: Romney needs to win the election and the people in
places like Fla., OH, VA and NV, who'll determine that, not only never
have heard of Mike Rowe they wouldn't know Mike Rowe from Mike Love of
the Beach Boys.


Uhh, no. "Dirty Jobs" was not only highly rated, but it was highly rated in exactly those sorts of blue-collar demographics. It sure ain't the rich white liberal oikophobic Dem base watching that show.

Posted by: Ian S. at September 06, 2012 09:16 AM (rPA5/)

109 We can always count on the faux hemophiliac czar to say something even more retarded than the historical hemophiliac czar.

Speaking of cocooned: Itinerant fly-by blog poster thinks himself a master of political strategy. Yeah right. Maybe the czar and that other end-of-bar philosopher, "Warren Bonesteel" can start their own blog together.

Posted by: A Balrog of Morgoth at September 06, 2012 09:21 AM (qZXps)

110 But I am sure that program is now long gone. BTW,
girls had a similar track except they did get courses in typing,
shorthand, etc. But that would be considered "sexist" now.


Posted by: Vic at September 06, 2012 08:54 AM (YdQQY)


Heh. My grandfather had a rather unique military career in WWI- after Basic Training all of the other soldiers in his unit were sent to France, but because he could type and knew shorthand he stayed behind at Camp Mills (within walking distance of his home) as an aide to some general.

Posted by: Nighthawk at September 06, 2012 09:24 AM (RSqz2)

111 I am not down on Rowe for doing commercials. I do not blame him for cashing in on his success. I am just tired of sering his face every twenty minutes. My opinion on car commercials is do voice overs of video showing how great the car is. But that is just me. He is a great guy with a great message. I love skilled labor guys. My Dad was the best welder in Chicago Local 597. That is not me saying that. Thst was his peers. He never failed an Xray and could do certain special very difficult welds flawlessly. At his wake, man after man told a story about his work and work ethic.

Posted by: Will Not Assimilate For Food at September 06, 2012 09:26 AM (GqXnk)

112
My sister and I talk about this all the time. Growing up, all the males in our family new how to doalmost anything - kind of part-time handymen. Passed from generation to generation, even ifthey went to college, they knew how to do stuff around the house.If you look at the previous generations, you can see howattitudes of hard work has changed over time and I think a lot of it is parental. When I went to college, I worked part time like most other kids.Getting a student loan wasn't an option to most parents. Nowadays, it's the ease of receiving student loans thatprevents the next generation from developing anyreal lifeskills, and more importantly, a strong work ethic.

When I was a training manager, Iused to tell the college kidsworking part time, "When you get your real job, what you learn here will always be relevent."

Posted by: joanne at September 06, 2012 09:27 AM (VNFBf)

113 The Everyone Goes to College scam is immoral. Awful.

As part of my job, I recently toured a metal "seal" company in PA - they make seals and things for giant turbines, 747 engines, some space shuttle stuff. They have enough work orders for 10 years, but not enough workers.

A few miles up the road we visited the vo-tech school, which doesn't get enough support to fill its metal shop. The company has apprenticeships and well-paying jobs waiting for any kid who learns the trade, but can't attact them.

This was going down during the spring, when the OWS slobs were complaining about being in college debt without a job. Everything is upside down.

Posted by: CJ at September 06, 2012 09:28 AM (9KqcB)

114 I contacted the Romney Campaign when I first heard about this letter. I am very pleased they have responded. Mike Rowe seems like the real deal.

Posted by: Steve Lockridge at September 06, 2012 09:28 AM (+ds8F)

115 9 This would be an AWESOME opportunity for Mitt Romney to go on the show and do some dirty jobs.

I don't think most people realize how much real, hands-on grimy work that he has done over the years for volunteer work and so on.

-Mercy
Posted by: Mercy Vetsel at September 06, 2012 08:16 AM (9zoEP)


I think that would be an excellent idea.

Posted by: 98ZJUSMC in Johnson County laughing at Cook County at September 06, 2012 09:29 AM (Wr20f)

116

Many new employees don't begin learning their trade until they are hired on and have no basic understanding of how mechanical things work.

You can thank Legos for that shit. Those filthy scandis created the perfect mental retardation vector in the form of colorful interlocking polymer bits and pieces.

Posted by: FRONT TOWARD LEFT at September 06, 2012 09:31 AM (ogdab)

117 California already has public trade schools. Regional Occupational Programs - ROP courses. Need to be 17 to enter.

San Mateo Jr. College (CSM) has a top shelf electronics department.
I completed the 2 year course and an industry bankrolled 9 month microwave fast track cert program and a NASA tech1 level soldering certification.

Entered the job market making $12hr working at a Fremont, Ca. defense contracting company. 6000sqft clean room filtered to 9microns. I tuned and tested 4-18ghz GAsFET amps for military applications, some waveguide stuff and some RD work.

My girlfriend at the time was making triple that as a hairstylist. She took the Cosmetology course at CSM. 9 months, certified Paul Mitchell CellophaneDyeJob Tech3.

Me? Secret security clearance, deadlines and government inspectors crawling up my ass - and to top it off- coworkers forging temp and burn-in cycle logs.

F that F'n noise. I chucked the soldering pencil, grabbed a tool belt and never looked back.

Be careful what ye wish for.

Posted by: Tradeschool BS at September 06, 2012 09:31 AM (h6XiD)

118
# 77

Really an amazingly naive and cocooned blog post, even by blog
standards. Newsflash, Sparky: Romney needs to win the election and the
people in places like Fla., OH, VA and NV, who'll determine that, not
only never have heard of Mike Rowe they wouldn't know Mike Rowe from
Mike Love of the Beach Boys.



So, no, Romney doesn't need to respond. He needs to win. The less
details the better. The voting public doesn't do details. The more
details you give them the more confused they get. Besides, if Rowe
really is all that worried about jobs then he should be voting for
Romney, no questions asked. For reasons so numbingly obvious they only
could be missed by the chattering classes.


Damn f'ing skippy! The -last- thing Romney needs to do is engage people outside of his campaign. *Shudder* He should remain...no, actually increase his isolation from the people he'd like to vote for him. As Obama has taught us, that's the way a real man campaigns, and leads his country to greatness.

/sarc

Posted by: Sticky Wicket at September 06, 2012 09:31 AM (L7hol)

119 Mike Rowe is a hottie.

Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:33 AM (5H6zj)

120 Since this is right up my alley, I'm all for Mike's idea. I even sent him an email offering my help.

Image is a big thing these days. And Mike's right: there's been a war on the trades. Their dirty and nasty, but so what? That time spent in the shower (with a cold beer) after work is relaxing. And whoever said upthread that this war began with Cliton is quite correct. It was he who declared we were going to move to a 'service economy.' How's that working out for us?

Let's see how Mitt responds to Mike's proposal. I never expected teh SCOAMF to embrace anything like it, since all he knows how to do is organize a community. I'd really like to see him step up to a million-dollar CNC machine and get it to perform the mechanical symphony of productivity.

Posted by: BackwardsBoy at September 06, 2012 09:33 AM (d0Tfm)

121 When I was a training manager, Iused to tell the college kidsworking part time, "When you get your real job, what you learn here will always be relevent."

I worked in a deli during college. A busy, popular NE Philly deli where standing around was not an option. That instilled a work ethic and lessons that I still lean on today.

Posted by: CJ at September 06, 2012 09:34 AM (9KqcB)

122 106
When I got my Masters in Womyn and Gender Studies I learned how WW2 was won by Rosie the Riveter so, believe me, I can relate to people in the skilled trades.
Posted by: Sandra Fluke's Sister, Lynn at September 06, 2012 09:14 AM (gFYz6)


Snark aside, to a certain extent, that is true.

Posted by: 98ZJUSMC in Johnson County laughing at Cook County at September 06, 2012 09:34 AM (Wr20f)

123 So someone claims no one knows Mike?

Everyone knows who Mike Rowe is. Wimmens think he's hit even going back to his QVC days and men like his Ford truck ads.

Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:35 AM (5H6zj)

124 F that F'n noise. I chucked the soldering pencil, grabbed a tool belt and never looked back.

You based all that on an entry-level job?

Posted by: CJ at September 06, 2012 09:37 AM (9KqcB)

125 I Love Mike Rowe!!! He is awesome, he is HOT, and he is an EAGLE SCOUT!

Posted by: Beckster at September 06, 2012 09:38 AM (VjJAc)

126 >>are there any cities constructing buildings and homes any longer? we have a lot of unemployed people in the building trades at ths point

Tons of building going on in NW Louisiana. All over the place. Houses, businesses, etc.

Posted by: Mama AJ at September 06, 2012 09:38 AM (SUKHu)

127 #123, the only guy who claims that is one of those Mr. Know-It-Alls who only drops by now and again to spew a few paragraphs of inane "U R Doing It Wrong!!!!" gibberish.

Posted by: A Balrog of Morgoth at September 06, 2012 09:39 AM (qZXps)

128 Our local uni is the third iirc largest comprehensive in the US meaning they have votech thru Masters degrees. It's a freat model for a public university. And it is also one if the most affordable schools in the country.

Kind of cool to learn that ASU started as a trade school.

Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:39 AM (5H6zj)

129 'Glad that Mitt responded to Rowe.

Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:40 AM (5H6zj)

130 Stand back.

The Higher Education Bubble is about to burst.

Posted by: eman at September 06, 2012 09:40 AM (Wp4rQ)

131 I worked in a deli during college. A busy, popular
NE Philly deli where standing around was not an option. That instilled
a work ethic and lessons that I still lean on today.

Posted by: CJ at September 06, 2012 09:34 AM (9KqcB)

One of my college jobs was in a busy deli like that- talk about having to have good, fast, and accurate math skills!

The other college job was at the local municipal water works as a laborer- digging holes, helping with engine overhauls, and cleaning the big water storage basins.

You really don't want to know what has been in your tap water BTW...

Which is why I usually drink bourbon.

Posted by: Nighthawk at September 06, 2012 09:41 AM (RSqz2)

132 @113
If the company were smart they'd partner withthe trade school, but they would need to pony up $ for scholarships and the like. Smart companies work with their local unis/schools on workforce development. Hell Adobe is already in conversations here and they havent even opened their new facility yet.

Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:45 AM (5H6zj)

133
Obama has a seekrit weapon! Scarlet Johannnsens boobies! That will fix ya, america/

Posted by: Fresh at September 06, 2012 09:46 AM (O7ksG)

134 "A national conversation" may boost "enthusiasm", but it won't do anything about an alleged skills gap. The "dirty jobs" are, not coincidentally, those that are most threatened by automation. This campaign would have been timely 40 or 50 years ago.

Posted by: Gerry at September 06, 2012 09:49 AM (Upd2y)

135 Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:45 AM (5H6zj)

I know they work closely together and I'm pretty sure financial aid is involved. The vo-tech person was with us on the company tour.

The kids just aren't interested, in part because the high schools don't encourage trades -schools have so much riding on how many students go on to college. As long as college aid is good applause line for politicians, we'll have this problem. And as long as people keep mindlessly clapping at such lines, policy won't change.

Posted by: CJ at September 06, 2012 09:51 AM (9KqcB)

136 I got me a man crush.

Posted by: Mekan at September 06, 2012 09:51 AM (hm8tW)

137 I thought Mike Rowe was just some clown on the TV.

Anagnorisis Peripeteia !!!

Posted by: franksalterego at September 06, 2012 09:56 AM (9XykO)

138 Romney still 47-44 at Rasmussen today

Posted by: Honey Badger at September 06, 2012 09:57 AM (GvYeG)

139 Everybody he meets is happy. Not quite a shock, but the best one was the sheepskin paper maker.

Posted by: Up with people! at September 06, 2012 09:58 AM (kzFo5)

140 This is the branch of education in which I work - career and technical education. What folks used to call the old "vocational education." It really isn't voc ed anymore. Kids can get certified in OSHA 10, welding, fire science, auto mechanics, culinary arts and restaurant management,pre-engineering, LNA... You can earn dual college credit, or articulated credit that allows you to skip over certain entry level courses in college if your high school has an articulation agreement with the college. Here in NH, kids who complete the high school Plumbing or Electrician programs can skip the first year of the requisite four year registered apprenticeship program that is required to earn a Master Electrician or Master Plumbers license.There's a whole SLEW of great, hands on CTE programs out there that are designed to get kids motivated to pursue skilled trades in a variety of fields, and that strive to make the transition from high school to college or the workplace smooth and direct.


The biggest problem we run into is prejudice; voc ed was always where "the bad kids" were sent. That's not the case anymore. It's true that CTE can be a great outlet for kids who don't do too well in a traditional paper-and-pencil classroom setting, but modern CTE isn't all oil changes and haircuts. There's a solid academic component, too. We're always trying to up the academic rigor, bringing more math and reading/writing components into the curricula. But we have to get people to stop thinking about these programs as "where the bad kids go" or "where the stupid kids go." And that starts with getting the PARENTS to understand that. A student might want to pursue plumbing, but if they've got a parent at home saying, "No kid of MINE is going to crawl around on his hands and knees under other people's sinks for a living!" then it's pretty hard to overcome that bias.

Until you remind the parents how much a good plumber costs. Then they start to rethink their position.

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Hobbit and ABO Supporter at September 06, 2012 10:04 AM (4df7R)

141 124>

I based it on 3 years of work with 2-4% wage increase every 6 months. Looked for better paying positions at other firms while still employed.

This is what techs earned. I didn't want to attend more g'damned school for an engineering degree. Get it? I was happy with the skilled work but the pay sucked.

But please, read past the obvious and cherry pick whatever you find convenient.

I had 3 part time jobs whilst self funding my own education.

This thread is about valuing tradesman. I'm an effing tradesman. I spent 3 years in high school auto shop, 2 in high school wood shop and 2 in metal shop.


Posted by: Tradeschool BS at September 06, 2012 10:05 AM (h6XiD)

142
I've been saying this for years. Not everybody needs to go to college. Even with the opportunity (scholarship) and the ability (140 IQ) I felt like I was headed in the wrong direction with my life. I dropped out, did a stint in the Air Force and eventually found an enjoyable career as a machinist working for the oil and gas industry. The money is decent ($45k this year) and I've got a skill that I can use pretty much anywhere. We've been steadily expanding for the last 10 years with some rather large jumps in business for the last couple of years. We can't find enough qualified machinists to meet our needs.

Posted by: digitalbrownshirt at September 06, 2012 10:06 AM (eHwT1)

143 The kids just aren't interested, in part because the high schools don't encourage trades -schools have so much riding on how many students go on to college. As long as college aid is good applause line for politicians, we'll have this problem. And as long as people keep mindlessly clapping at such lines, policy won't change.
Posted by: CJ at September 06, 2012 09:51 AM (9KqcB)



I can tell you that career and technical education is expressly designed to get kids ready for "postsecondary education or the world of work." One of the performance indicators we have to report to the Feds is how many of our students go on to college, employment, or the military. For CTE, it's all about giving kids the skills and the goals to follow a givencareer path so that they don't wander around after high school, dithering over a major or playing WOW in their parents' basement. But again, we have to overcome that "voc ed" prejudice.

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Hobbit and ABO Supporter at September 06, 2012 10:09 AM (4df7R)

144 So someone claims no one knows Mike? Everyone knows who Mike Rowe is. Wimmens think he's hit even going back to his QVC days and men like his Ford truck ads.
Posted by: Y-not on the phone at September 06, 2012 09:35 AM (5H6zj)


This. Everyone knows Mike Rowe. I love his paper towel ads with his parents. Adorable.

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Hobbit and ABO Supporter at September 06, 2012 10:14 AM (4df7R)

145 I have the hots for Mike Rowe. I remember when he wrote to the newly-elected Obama, and I'm not surprised he didn't hear back, since the Dems are no longer a party of people who make things.

As far as I'm concerned, his project is a perfect fit with the Romney campaign. Jobs are the only thing.

Posted by: stace at September 06, 2012 10:26 AM (RnLFP)

146 If Labor Unions could be reformed into actual Trade Guilds, where training and certification mattered, and trades were valued, this country would thrive. Lead TV characters used to be bus drivers, sewer workers, factory workers, etc. The people were in the same boat, and those watching could relate.

Now they're all lawyers, cops and scientists...and reality shows exist to let you watch other people work at pawn shops, fishing boats and driving trucks.

Trades are no longer something we do...it's what we are supposed to be thankful that we don't HAVE to do.

And that is completely backwards.



Posted by: ChampionCapua at September 06, 2012 10:28 AM (KZi9D)

147 Lawyers....the deadliest weapon on Earth

I'm a f-ing prophet.

Posted by: AmishDude at September 06, 2012 10:29 AM (xSegX)

148 I've worked in the transportation industry, both trucking and rail, for more than 20 years. I've worked more 60 hour weeks than 40 hour weeks and more 80 hour weeks than I can count. I've done everything from data entry to truck dispatch to pricing to, most recently, marketing manager for a half billion dollars in accounts. I made it into management without a degree by putting in the hours, creating a vicious cycle, allowing no time to complete my degree. Neither, I might add, did I have time to attend all of my daughter's dance recitals or PTA meetings.

The corporate world, dear graduates, is not all it is cracked up to be. Sure, you work in an air-conditioned environment and can hang art on your office walls, but still, at the end of the day, I've never received the satisfaction from an 8 or an 18 hour day at the office as I have in standing back to admire the beautiful piece of furniture I refinished during a few stolen hours here and there.

There is something soul-satisfying about working with your hands: Mowing the lawn and smelling the fresh cut grass; Running your fingers across the surface of a freshly sanded chest and knowing that it's been 100 years since the last person saw the beauty of the unfinished wood.

And, fellas, there is nothing so manly as a gent who can wear a suit and a tool-belt with equal ease.

Let's hope to the Heavens above that the era of the metrosexual man has entered its dying days.

Bring on the REAL men!

Posted by: Niedermeyer's Dead Horse at September 06, 2012 10:29 AM (piMMO)

149 The boy scouts just added a welding badge in partnership with a trade union. Seems we are seriously short of future welders. Truth is, not every kid needs to go to college. The goal of full college enrollment only pushes up college costs and decreases the value and quality of education.

Posted by: California red at September 06, 2012 10:31 AM (DXTKe)

150 We womyns do, indeed, know Mike Rowe.


Posted by: Niedermeyer's Dead Horse at September 06, 2012 10:31 AM (piMMO)

151 8 I'm uncertain how this will help at this time. are there any cities constructing buildings and homes any longer?
we have a lot of unemployed people in the building trades at ths point
Posted by: willow at September 06, 2012 08:16 AM (TomZ9)

Yes, we are building stuff in Texas, both new and remodeling. I can hardly drive down my street with all the contractors trucks always remodeling the neighbors' houses. Plus, I just had to have a major electrical and HVAC re-do on my house because that stuff doesn't last forever.

Posted by: stace at September 06, 2012 10:31 AM (RnLFP)

152 The boy scouts just added a welding badge in partnership with a trade
union. Seems we are seriously short of future welders. Truth is, not
every kid needs to go to college. The goal of full college enrollment
only pushes up college costs and decreases the value and quality of
education.

*****

Tulsa Welding School here in Jax had to move to a larger building to train all the folks that are needed here.

Posted by: Niedermeyer's Dead Horse at September 06, 2012 10:32 AM (piMMO)

153 I'm uncertain how this will help at this time. are there any cities constructing buildings and homes any longer?

we have a lot of unemployed people in the building trades at ths point


****


When not building new, the older stuff just gets older and more in need of repair. Trades like HVAC and plumbing and electrical are still demanding a premium.

Posted by: Niedermeyer's Dead Horse at September 06, 2012 10:34 AM (piMMO)

154 I had to review my homeowners insurance coverage the other day, so I went to a web site that gives you a number based on sq footage, interior detail, local construction cost, and about a hundred other variables.

The estimate on replacement cost on my home -- not including the value of the land? Cut and paste...$1,042,834.00

Not bad for a 'kid' who didn't know what to do with his life and backed into a trade and wasn't afraid to get his hands dirty each and every day, year after year after year. Or come home after work and start working some more. What the hell, my hands were already dirty. Results may vary.

I don't think I'll ever see Mike Rowe in the same light after watching that TED. Mitt is wise to embrace his support.

Posted by: A regular moron at September 06, 2012 10:40 AM (feFL6)

155 Learning to weld requires one thing. Hours and hours of practice. Stick and arc for 300 hours - but don't do it in welding cubbies - make the kids practice while on extension ladders and scaffolding and in odd kneeling positions.

Read a tape measure, add and subtract fractions and learn basic blueprint reading.

The rest comes from working a job.

KISS.

Posted by: Tradeschool BS at September 06, 2012 10:46 AM (h6XiD)

156 In TX, the community colleges are hooking up with the business community to learn what trades are the most needed in any given area, so they can funnel kids into the skills that are the most in demand. For example, areas in the shale gas plays have need of welders, so the schools are made aware of that.

Posted by: stace at September 06, 2012 10:47 AM (RnLFP)

157 Apprenticeship Programs.
If we get rid of the Unions, they just might prove successful.

Posted by: garrett at September 06, 2012 10:48 AM (HShVY)

158 I agree with non-union apprenticeships.

I was locked out of two union jobs even though I ranked 4th highest test score in Nor Cal for Heavy Equipment Operators Local #3.

Posted by: 13times at September 06, 2012 10:58 AM (h6XiD)

159 My greatest hero outside of my Dad is Mike Holmes. He represents all that is good and right and he does it with hammers and shovels.
I am so awed by the skills, knowledge, and professionalism of Mike and all his crew and the subs he brings on the jobs. If you do not have enough personal knowledge of the trades and what they can be you need to watch his TV show - Holmes On Homes. Along the way all these guys make a good income and because they are both highly trained and highly ethical, they have no lack of work.

Posted by: chuck in st paul at September 06, 2012 10:59 AM (EhYdw)

160 147 AD,

No doubt....my obituary is going to be a fuck you to lawyers.

Posted by: sven10077 at September 06, 2012 11:00 AM (LRFds)

161 One of my favorite Dirty Jobs episodes was the one about Green Jobs really being Brown Jobs. In other words, some of the "greenest" jobs are just by people getting dirty cleaning out old dump pits or salvaging by hand materials from buildings about to be demoed. Far different from the ephemeral green jobs of Porkulus fame.

Posted by: stace at September 06, 2012 11:10 AM (Cegrh)

162
This is good. Not everyone is cut out for college or quite frankly, there are some who are, but just can't endure the unending bullshit (and cost) of it all. Some people feel the need to produce things with their hands. All too often in our society, these people are marginalized or looked down upon (unless of course, they are part of the union machine).

Posted by: bicentennialguy at September 06, 2012 11:13 AM (vg8iE)

163 Wow, watched that video, and I was blown away. Mike Rowe, who knew? Latin Classicist! Wow! I just emailed this post to a bunch of my friends and family. Nice work, Andy, thanks for putting this up!

Posted by: runningrn at September 06, 2012 11:26 AM (WGmy2)

164 I never responded to your letter because my "Body Man" Reggie kept it from me. That's why I had to let him go. Anyway, right now as you might imagine, I am very busy Presidentin' and won't be able to get back to you on this until AFTER the election. I have to take the time to remind the American people how awesome I really am.

I am glad that you understand and that I have your support. Please send your check in the self addressed envelope. FORWARD

Posted by: Barack Obama as Augustus at September 06, 2012 11:26 AM (4eNxd)

165 150
We womyns do, indeed, know Mike Rowe.

In addition to the physical I love his voice. Its weird as I have gotten older I really appreciate and notice a nice speaking voice.

Posted by: Long Island at September 06, 2012 11:30 AM (kzp9t)

166 Mike Rowe is teh hawt.

Posted by: wowpromo at September 06, 2012 11:34 AM (0hTKc)

167 Winston Rothschild's Sewage and Septic Sucking Services!

Posted by: rickb223 at September 06, 2012 11:41 AM (zji3t)

168 I have to constantly remind my wife that Mike Rowe is gay. A shame.

Posted by: mark c at September 06, 2012 11:43 AM (hnhBR)

169 Mike Pence who is running for Gov, is proposing this stuff.

Posted by: Jumbo Shrimp at September 06, 2012 11:55 AM (DGIjM)

170 Obama is a stuttering clusterf*ck of a miserable failure.

Posted by: steevy at September 06, 2012 11:57 AM (6o4Fb)

171 I have watched every episode, sans the first 2 seasons that netflix only had a best of. Am really enjoying this season set in Australia. I have seen him flirt with plenty of girls on the show. More then a few I assumed you he nailed later that night. But if you are telling me he is into the Barskey sausage special, whatever, I don't judge a man by how he likes teh sex only by his values, how he acts, and how he treats others. And by those measurements Mike Rowe is head and shoulders above your average douche bag on TV.

Posted by: Shiggz RoketSturgeon at September 06, 2012 12:10 PM (RfvTE)

172 Heh. Just been rooting thru his website. California has an apprenticeship program called "I Built It!"

Posted by: t-bird at September 06, 2012 12:14 PM (FcR7P)

173 Awesome post. I am going to share with everyone on my email list.

Great show. Seen every one of them.

Mike Rowe is not gay. His girlfriend's name is Danielle Burgio (actress, see IMDB).

Posted by: Grumpy the Younger at September 06, 2012 12:26 PM (jts1f)

174 I have to constantly remind my wife that Mike Rowe is gay. A shame.


****

He's definitely a top.

Posted by: Niedermeyer's Dead Horse at September 06, 2012 12:26 PM (piMMO)

175 I agree with Rowe totally. My plumber, contractor, and awning maker all have BAs from the local State U. They're glad they did it, and did it without loans, but they all hated to work in a cubicle and started their own businesses and are successful.

I taught a grad student once, a woman, who was a full electrician and she was getting a master's in some humanities program so she could teach. I thought, do you really want to do that?? But that was her passion. I also agree that following your passion sometimes leads to heartbreak and financial problems. Hope it was okay for her...

Posted by: pj at September 06, 2012 12:28 PM (DQHjw)

176 one of the problems with shop classes is the H.S. counselors. They put the burn outs in the classes and it discourages the kids who really want to learn to run machines.

Posted by: cicero skip at September 06, 2012 12:54 PM (3m9Uc)

177 I see my tongue in cheek routine fell flat. I also tell my wife thatevery man she finds attractive is obviously gay. where is she? she was supposed to be home at midnight.

Posted by: mark c at September 06, 2012 12:56 PM (hnhBR)

178
I own a company that specializes in commercial
flat/low slope single ply roofing. It is also a very unappreciated vocation,
four walls are not worth a shit if you do not have a good roof. Some of the
problems are definitely that nobody wants to do it but even though I make good
money in the DelMarVa area I don’t want to do it anymore and I could give a rats
ass if nobody else did at this point either. I want people to suffer with there
buildings falling apart and failing so that maybe they will think a little more
about the fact that we need all types of trades to make our communities work.
And by the way did you know that OSHA is now self funding? This means they have
a little pep in there step to get out there and make us all “safe” cause it's all
about safety and not the money.HA! They are on a rampage right now and I wish
they would do it with the police too so that everyone could enjoy the
benefits of having somebody watching your every move to ensure your “safety”. If
you watched Mike’s video he is right that it is not
safety first but maybe around 2 or 3 depending on the threat level. First is you
have to be able to do the job. Nobody wants anybody to get hurt or worse but it
is an unfair and unsafe world and no amount of govt. regulation is going to
change it and even if it could would any truly freedom loving SOB want it? Rant
off.

Posted by: V2 at September 06, 2012 12:57 PM (XCcS1)

179 @175 +1 daughter's boyfriend has some college and is a licensed electrician. He'll probably finish college - business degree - as he has his eye on a superintendent's job down the road. Meanwhile he probably makes more $ than most second tier law grads.

My Dad was a Chem Eng but left after about 8 years to be a roofing contractor. Always an outdoorsman and being able to take 3 months off in the heavy snow season was a plus, too.

Posted by: chuckr at September 06, 2012 01:03 PM (XLu7l)

180 I didn't have a degree until my 30s, so I worked as a court steno. Made more than my friends with degrees, which they hated.

Posted by: pj at September 06, 2012 01:40 PM (DQHjw)

181 Mike Rowe is all the way HOT.

Posted by: Sinalco at September 06, 2012 01:49 PM (IVRIf)

182
Mike Rowe has a clothing line too.
I got THE BEST work jacket at Christmas and just love it.

Posted by: concrete girl at September 06, 2012 02:58 PM (y2Ojs)

183 Damn that is an amazing video, just astounding. More people need to watch that. So much hard truth and so much wisdom. Mike Rowe is a hero, in his simple, silly way.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at September 06, 2012 03:05 PM (r4wIV)

184 Rowe unperson. Thoughtcrime.

Posted by: General Zod at September 06, 2012 04:13 PM (2+bRt)

185 And to think, Mr. Rowe got his start in San Francisco of all places.

Posted by: Poly Ester at September 06, 2012 04:18 PM (yXIP5)

186 A vocation is a calling, from Latin vocare, to call. Generally, if one is tuned in, one can discern a calling from God to the married, religious, or single life. Being a cook, salesman, soldier, doctor, etc., is a career. But some people just are so good at developing a talent that it seems they have answered a calling from God, like my plumber.

Posted by: kmbold at September 06, 2012 05:00 PM (ZNzHz)

187 Um, that comment was a reply to #2, Cicero Kid

Posted by: kmbold at September 06, 2012 05:10 PM (ZNzHz)

188 More jobs or More abortions?

Posted by: Mirror-Universe Mitt Romney at September 06, 2012 06:52 PM (YLbeX)

189 "But the Skills Gap proves that we need something else too. We need people who see opportunity where opportunity exists. We need enthusiasm for careers that have been overlooked and underappreciated by society at large. We need to have a really big national conversation about what we value in the workforce, and if I can be of help to you in that regard, I am at your service – assuming of course, you find yourself in a new address early next year."

For Leftists, it's all about Prestige. All the time.

Posted by: Mirror-Universe Mitt Romney at September 06, 2012 06:56 PM (YLbeX)

190 "These efforts are dedicated to a simple idea: you did build that! Or at least you could if you knew a useful skill like welding, carpentry, plumbing or the like. Getting a degree in Womyn's Studies and the accompanying unemployment and mountain of student loan debt, on the other hand, seems like an exceptionally stupid idea."

The only useful skill is reading teleprompter. You racist.

Posted by: Mirror-Universe Mitt Romney at September 06, 2012 06:59 PM (YLbeX)

191 Mike Rowe is right on the money about this.

Posted by: Holger at September 06, 2012 06:59 PM (MHk3m)

192 "I always thought there something ill-fated about the promise of three million “shovel ready jobs” made to a society that no longer encourages people to pick up a shovel."

Well, to be fair, shovels are sexist. No joke.

Posted by: Mirror-Universe Mitt Romney at September 06, 2012 07:01 PM (YLbeX)

193 The only shovel ready jobs Obama has are for the undertakers and gravediggers.

Posted by: wolf at September 06, 2012 07:15 PM (YFcSa)

194 We see at least one new Morton's building going out on the highway almost every day down here in southern Kansas! Yes, there is a need for skilled worker.

Posted by: BuckOfama at September 06, 2012 08:41 PM (0hDIC)

195 What a great idea. Unfortunately the current administration was installed by and takes its orders from organized labor. Non-union workers can't work government or government-funded jobs, and the cost is astronomical. Flag people make over $40 per hour in California: the result is they don't work because we can't afford the project. In the union everything is based on seniority, so the new workers don't get the good jobs and are the first to get fired, even if they are the hardest workers. Fire the illegal appointees to the NLRB, and allow companies to work WITH their employees to benefit ALL members of the organization.

Posted by: John at September 06, 2012 09:14 PM (8BfTq)

196 Camille Paglia is also quite interested in this. Just google Camille Paglia and revalorizing the trades.

Maybe they could get together and kick some butt!

Posted by: pj at September 06, 2012 09:35 PM (DQHjw)






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