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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/16222/set-kids-free-to-work/

Set Kids Free to Work

March 25, 2011 by

Old folks are working and teenagers are laying around doing nothing.  It didn’t used to be this way.  Kids used to find a job as soon as they had the desire for two very important things:  get out of the house and get money in their hands.

Finding part-time work was a snap.  The locally-owned burger shack always needed help, there were plenty of lawns to be mowed, and babies to be watched.  But now government makes it tough to employ someone under eighteen and taking a chance on an unproven teenager is expensive.  There’s a high national minimum wage and some states set minimum pay even higher than that.

Of course pay is just part of the cost of an employee. There’s FICA and Social Security and local employment taxes and so on.  Plus, following the corporate-mandated firing procedures so the employer doesn’t end up in court for sacking someone, is another burden.  So the manager for the local franchisee of Arby’s or McDonald’s is more likely to hire the 66-year old from down the street, rather than the 16-year old.

Mr. or Ms. Manager has a job to protect and mortgage to pay, so Mr. Jones with a 40-year track record of showing up on time and really needing to supplement his Social Security check is a surer, safer bet than Danny Jones, who, while seeming bright and enthusiastic,  has never held a job and has classes and band to schedule around.  Who knows if Danny Boy will stick around?

This dynamic has been at work for a decade.  Back in 2000, 34 percent of boys in their mid-teens worked, while 29 percent of senior men were employed, the Wall Street Journal reports.  In 2010, fewer than 15 percent of 16 to 17 year old boys were employed,  while 34 percent of men aged 60 to 69 were holding down a job.

It’s the same for females.  Just a decade ago 35 percent of girls aged 16 and 17 were working, now it’s less than 17 percent.

In big cities like New York, L.A., Chicago and D.C. the situation is worse; only one in ten teens is working.

This of course is terrible for youngsters who don’t gain the experience of on-the-job training, as well as learning to work with a variety of people, be responsible, and learning to budget their time.

But employers are losing out as well.  In his fantastic book The Case Against Adolescence: Rediscovering the Adult in Every Teen, Robert Epstein writes, “We’re  most able to reason clearly when we’re in our teens, and no matter how aggressively we may try to train people of other ages, this basic fact is unlikely to change.”

Young employees not only bring fresh energy to the workplace but new ideas and creativity to employers who are operating in a world that is changing more rapidly than ever before.    

Epstein cites numerous research showing that the teen years are the peak of our mental powers.  Work by Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget indicates that we become capable of formal operational thinking at about age eleven and peak in those abilities at age 15.  In his book The measurement of Adult Intelligence, David Wechsler “concluded that the highest ‘mental age’ we can reach is fifteen and a half.”  J.C. Raven wrote in the British Journal of Psychology that intelligence peaks at thirteen or fourteen.

Raven writes, “after age thirty, a person’s ability to understand a new method of thinking, adopt new methods of working, and even to adapt to a new environment, steadily decreases.”

Epstein lists dozens of examples of creative and mental prowess of teens going back centuries.  But of course, government and unions have worked together to keep kids unemployed and uninspired.  With no responsibilities youngsters are infantilized by the many laws restricting young people: curfew laws, tougher driving laws, teen-wage laws, laws curtailing sexual activities, free-speech restrictions at school, censorship of educational activities, dress codes, smoking and drinking laws, ad infinitum.

There are plenty of things that need to be done all of the time.  So young and old and in-between have plenty of work to do.  Set kids free and let them work miracles.

{ 66 comments }

Jeffrey Tucker March 25, 2011 at 3:49 pm

These are incredible statistics, and they confirm what I have suspected from casual observations. I also notice that the minimum wage has soared in this period, what appears to be the largest increase in the shortest period of time on record – pricing this entire age group completely out of the market. This really is a disaster.

http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/anth484/minwage.html

HL March 25, 2011 at 4:09 pm

Holding down a job is a critical step in the maturation process. It is appalling how many men and women can’t do this well into their late 20′s. Having a job is almost shameful. Much to my trust fund spouse’s dismay, I keep hammering my kids with Randian type quotes, such as “the measure of your worth is how well you do your job, period.”

W: “Oh, but our child is so loving and creative!”
Me: “Most bums are.”

Freedom Fighter March 25, 2011 at 7:08 pm

“the measure of your worth is how well you do your job, period.”

Then I am worth NOTHING ! :-D

Adam Smith March 25, 2011 at 7:18 pm

“the measure of your worth is how well you do your job, period.”

What a tragic outlook (c.f. Citizen Kane)

Capn Mike March 25, 2011 at 10:14 pm

But of course!
“Job” doesn’t mean just some drone activity in a cubicle. It means raising kids, gettin’ food, providing shelter, the whole sum of adult behavior. So yeah, dammit, that IS the measure of your worth!

HL March 25, 2011 at 11:40 pm

Amen.

Freedom Fighter March 26, 2011 at 3:12 pm

“It means raising kids”

My parents were and are still abusive.
My grand parents are envious.

I guess they are worth nothing either.

Vanmind April 17, 2011 at 10:38 pm

“Most bums are.”

Name one.

Jeffrey Tucker March 25, 2011 at 4:14 pm

The culture is being shape by the legal restrictions. It really is a disaster in the making.

nate-m March 25, 2011 at 4:58 pm

You shouldn’t take being wrong all the time so personally. I know that the ideas expressed on this website are strange and confusing to a person as brainwashed as yourself. I also understand the amount of shock and shame that it inflicts on your mental well being when you finally realized that everything that you came to believe in is just a lie.

But I must point out that being childish and lashing out as the Mises institute for shattering your delusions about how the world can and does work is not really that constructive. Please realize that you are simply at the 3rd stage of the Kübler-Ross grief cycle (anger).

While you still have a long ways to go before you finally gain the proper level of Austrian enlightenment, you should already be seeing the light at the of the tunnel.

On. And please remember, your brain is like a muscle. The frustration and headaches your currently experiencing may just be because visiting this website caused you to try to use it for the first time in a very long while. It’s atrophied from lack of use. It will take some time before you will be able to rely on your own mental abilities.

Michael Richards March 25, 2011 at 5:35 pm

Nice reply :D

AZVic March 26, 2011 at 10:21 pm

This piece busts the myth of ‘illegal immigrants do the work that Americans don’t want to do.” Illegals in our job market take away many, many jobs that our teenagers used to depend on for their first jobs. Yes, they are the bottom rung, menial jobs like dishwashing, hotel maids, babysitting, lawn mowing, and others, but those opportunities gave our teens invaluable real-world experience that is now denied them by a work force that is here illegally.

Anthony March 27, 2011 at 12:00 am

But of course this is only because it is illegal for the teens to work at the wages the illegal immigrants work at.

Sione March 27, 2011 at 12:59 am

You assume that lots and lots of American teenagers are available and ready and WANTING to do that sort of work, full time, reliably, consistently and even permanently (because for many, many people there is no higher rung of the ladder that they are going to be able to attain).

Sione

HL March 25, 2011 at 5:07 pm

Duh, winning!

Robert T March 25, 2011 at 5:09 pm

Wow that’s terrible. How dare somebody make threats to use violence (especially involving firearms) to get what they want. I mean, who would do such a vile thing??? XD

Freedom Fighter March 25, 2011 at 7:01 pm

I want God to give me back my soul. That’s what I want.
Unfortunately, in this case, I am absolutely certain that threats are NOT going to work. LOL !! :-D

Freedom Fighter March 25, 2011 at 7:02 pm

Kids could elect to work and study and therefore earn some money and learn to manage money and prepare for their future as they study. There are laws in certain counties that forbid even teenagers 16 years of age to work. That is completely crazy.

That is the way they found to prevent high school dropout.

nate-m March 25, 2011 at 10:06 pm

I started working when I was 15. I intend to work until I die.

I don’t particularly like it, but it is better then the alternatives.

Freedom Fighter March 25, 2011 at 6:56 pm

“Kids used to find a job as soon as they had the desire for” “Finding part-time work was a snap.”

Oh the good ol days. In now days, it’s tough even for grown ups to find a part time job flipping burgers, let alone a real job paying a living wage.

Vanmind April 17, 2011 at 10:45 pm

Nah, that ridiculous paragraph is more like romanticism. “Ooh, the local burger shack was always looking for help.”

Adam Smith March 25, 2011 at 7:10 pm

It’s certainly important for young people to learn the value of hard, honest work.

However, the argument that “Young employees not only bring fresh energy to the workplace but new ideas and creativity to employers who are operating in a world that is changing more rapidly than ever before” lacks pragmatism. Young Danny Jones has as much opportunity to bring “new ideas and creativity” to Arby’s and/or McDonald’s as his 66-year old counterparts (ZERO).

Why not send unemployed teens to volunteer at soup kitchens? They could learn to work while simultaneously learning what lack of work leads to. Or maybe they will learn sympathy instead, much to the horror of the Ayn Rand acolytes who regard any homeless as part of the “parasite class”.

Seattle March 25, 2011 at 7:42 pm

Or, we can have them do something productive.

Adam Smith March 25, 2011 at 8:00 pm

If they can’t get a job how does the parent instill diligence?

And volunteering can be productive. Just because no physical product comes from it does not mean it cannot inspire young volunteers to work harder when they do have jobs.
Sure, its not ideal, as it does lend itself learning about income and fiduciary responsibility, but it’s better than allowing youngsters to idle.

Owen March 26, 2011 at 9:39 am

Social Security is VOLUNTARY. If that is really a cost they are worried about then STOP withholding it and STOP paying it now you’ve reduced a cost that they are worried about.

The other thing is that the minimum wage laws are unconstitutional. Since when does the government have the authority to dictate contracts? The only authority I can find for the government to dictate contracts is the fact the businesses are filing for an Employer Identification Number (EIN). If a business does not have an EIN then the anti-discrimination laws would not apply, there could be no possible Social Security payments.

Seattle March 26, 2011 at 2:44 pm

If volunteer work really was so great, why aren’t kids flocking to it now? Why do we need to “send” them off to the labor camps?

sweatervest March 26, 2011 at 2:52 pm

“If volunteer work really was so great, why aren’t kids flocking to it now?”

Because they’re imprisoned in school all day?

“Why do we need to “send” them off to the labor camps?”

Was anyone suggesting that, or just suggesting that it’s a good idea and parents should not discourage and stop their children from working as they often do?

Freedom Fighter March 26, 2011 at 3:30 pm

“If they can’t get a job how does the parent instill diligence?”

So that’s why the parents decided to have kids ?
Just so they can be hard working (aka slaves) feeding the production-consumption system ?

Looks to me that those parents are pieces of scum which should have their genitals teared off !

If you are going to have kids, you are going to give them 100%, you are going to make them your everything, you are going to meet both their material and emotional needs and you will be diligent in making sure they become all they can be.

You are not going to neglect them to advance your career and you are not going to abuse them. If so, why did you have them in the first place. Looks to me that this kind of parents which would be content to see their kids work at unskilled, unpaid and unappreciated work don’t know how to use their genitals and need to have them removed !

I decided to stay single with no kids because I cannot honestly answer the questions: WHY should I have kids ? There is already 7 billion people on earth, is another child needed ? I am myself poor, introverted, excentric and having a hard time supporting myself, therefore I could not give a child the support and resources it needs.

I keep my genitals in check, soft and in my pants, I don’t even let desires or sentiments get to me. I am responsible.

It’s a shame that too many human scumbags use their equipment irresponsibly. Let the rich have kids.

Adam Smith March 26, 2011 at 4:53 pm

Nice rant.
What does it have to do with what I said?

Freedom Fighter March 27, 2011 at 1:28 pm

It has EVERYTHING to do with what you said. You should raise your child to be all they can be and you should always be there for them.

Diligent can have two meanings: doing your best, become all you can be or the pejorative “get off your butt and go find a job” as if dirty and unappreciated jobs were something to be proud and happy about. I understand that you are not always master of your destiny and sometimes you have to take what comes by.

But don’t neglect your kids, make them become all they can be. If they end up in a shit job, make sure it was not because you neglected them and did not give them all they needed. In that case, if you did everything right, they should not be stuck in that shit job for long.

But if you don’t care about your children and just tell them to get off their buts and go to work, as in getting rid of them, as in belittling and humiliating them, then you are a scumbag of a parent. By “you” I mean such parents, not you personally.

Adam Smith March 28, 2011 at 12:50 pm

FF, it seems to me that you misinterpreted my post.
I inquired how one would teach to hard work despite unemployment.
Nothing in there about parents having kids just to send them off to work.
That’s just sick.

Freedom Fighter March 26, 2011 at 3:17 pm

“Young Danny Jones has as much opportunity to bring “new ideas and creativity” to Arby’s and/or McDonald’s as his 66-year old counterparts (ZERO).”

Young Danny could create a better sentence to greet customers at the car booth. Instead of rehearsing the monotonous “do you want a muffin with that” with lack of enthusiasm like his 66 years old crusty colleague, he could be creative and full of energy and say:
“Good day my dear sir, how about a nice, warm, tasty and marvellous caramel muffin to go with your coffee, I bet you you won’t regret it, they are fabulous tasting.” with an upbeat and happy tone.

That would work everytime. There you go, creativity. As for fresh energy. The youngster could smile and be upbeat longer than the grumpy 66 years old who is in constant hurt and can’t wait to finish his day.

There you go, there is no zero.

Freedom Fighter March 26, 2011 at 3:36 pm

That 66 years old crusty fart might have a 30 years track record of always being there on time. But what good will it be to the restaurant manager if he has low endurance and cannot sustain a long day of customer harassment and fast paced floor mopping and fries cooking all the while keeping a smile and continuing non-stop, not to mention irregular hours and overtime.

I mean, I watched videos of military basic training and I am completely terrified at the idea of having to go through that shit 13 weeks. I’d rather die, it looks too tough and demanding.

Well, a job at McDonald’s is like basic training every day, the same level of pressure, only the pressure doesn’t come from the petty officer or the master corporal, it comes from the hundred of customers who are angry and are complaining that you mixed up their orders. Not to mention your boss, coworkers and assistant manager which is a McDonald’s version of a master corporal.

Working at McDonald’s is like basic training only you can’t count the days you have left until it’s over, it won’t be just a mere 13 weeks, it will be forever until you die. YUCK !

Surely a youngster has a better chance to survive this than an old crusty fart. If the military doesn’t hire people above 50 years old, then McDonald’s shouldn’t hire people 66 years old.

Also, since you can’t teach an old monkey to make grimaces, he will probably just rehearse the sales pitch on a monotonous and unhappy tone, leading to poor sales.

While young Danny boy will invent new sentences and upbeat sales pitches to increase sales and he will excel at mopping the floor and cooking the fries all the while simultaneously scrubbing the toilets of barf that old fatty customers vomited because they could not digest that vile stuff you call food.

augusto March 26, 2011 at 4:56 pm

Why would Danny boy do that, when he can just ask for a government-backed loan to loaf around for 4 years in college?

Adam Smith March 26, 2011 at 5:01 pm

“A job at McDonald’s is like basic training.” Agreed. That’s why there’s no real room for new ideas and creativity.

Sione March 27, 2011 at 12:54 am

One of my first businesses was a pub. Friday nights were big nights- always. One particular occasion I had a well known band booked. I figured we’d be busier than a usual Friday so I called in a few temps to give some extra manpower (collecting glasses, washing up, delivering grog to the tables, emptying the pokies, swapping over the kegs- you know, all the usual pub stuff). After a successful evening everyone stayed back for a few staff drinks, as you do. Two of the temps mentioned that they’d worked for Burger King (which surely must be similar to McDs in terms of the work experience). They both reckoned what we were doing was more demanding. Funny thing was, I didn’t consider pub work that bad a deal at all. I guess it’s all a matter of what you are used to and what you are prepared to do.

As far as a 66 year old is concerned. I had a barman (Taffy) who was older than that. He coped OK so far as I could tell. He was a bit of a fixture and had stayed doing nights at the pub for years (two owners before me had had him on staff). I gather he had a retail job during the day as well as doing his three nights a week for the pub. Turns out that Taffy owned a lot of houses. He’d started off as a wharfie and saved like crazy. By the time I knew him he didn’t need to work. He still worked though. Full bore every shift.

I also recall a guy we knew as “Bulkhead”. He was past 70 and still a tug master doing coastal shipping, moving dry bulk barges. He’d likely still be doing it if his wife hadn’t up and died. That broke him.

For hospitality or fast food employees age has little to do with performance. Some people are quality good at what they do, while others are unsuited to the specific tasks and nature of that particular business, finally some others are plain dreadful and should never be allowed to have their shadows darken the door to the premises. Finally, it is more than doubful that working in hospitality or fast food is like basic training. That’s an analogy that does not hold.

Sione

HL March 27, 2011 at 1:25 pm

You are correct. The first job can be anything. My first job was creating spreadsheets for a firm that was pushing alternative energy back in the 80′s. I was 16.

Mr. French has previously written about Marcus Buckingham. I second Mr. French’s recommendation that everyone get a grip on what their talents are and start moving in that direction, pronto. Don’t waste four years in prison, errr, I mean “high school,” and then four years in college if it ain’t takin’ you closer to where you are going.

Freedom Fighter March 27, 2011 at 1:32 pm

There is a LOT of room for new ideas and creativity even in basic training.

I plan on memorizing by heart, in advance, the list of all military equipment that I will have to handle during basic training. I plan on obtaining, in advance, detailed information about the rooms, beds, room equipment and inspection standards before I get to basic training.

Therefore, I will already establish a room inspection checklist, categorized by order of priority, to make sure that when I have to do my room, I can pass the inspection.

Also, I am working on a folding ruler with four 12″ sides that will snap together to make a 12″ x 12″ frame in order to have a template to quickly fold my clothes 12″ x 12″. When I’m done folding my clothes, I unsnap the ruler and hide it beneath my bed.

I plan to teach those things to the entire platoon beginning on day one. You can be creative in how you do those things. If you cannot be creative in what you have to accomplish, you can still be creative in how you accomplish it and therefore accomplish it faster, cheaper and better.

Hence, Danny Boy’s sales pitch sentence and my folding ruler and inspection checklist.

Why most recruits fail at room inspection is because they don’t have a detailed, step by step checklist of all the things that must be done, how they must be done and when they must be done in order to have a perfect inspection.

So they miss steps and lose time wandering about the chores.

I plan to develop such a list for myself and the entire platoon prior to my enlistment in basic training.

Adam Smith March 28, 2011 at 12:45 pm

You’re talking about how to better do basic chores. Doesn’t seem like much room for new ideas and creativity.
While I commend you for your dedication to efficiency (the military needs it) I have to point out that your creativity and new ideas are limited to a previously established set of tasks.
Your drill sergeant (just like Danny’s manager at McD’s) only cares about the degree of efficiency with which tasks are completed. He will not ask for your creative input, though it’s likely he bestow on you a leadership role.
Good luck at basic training–you will be an asset to your platoon.

Grant March 25, 2011 at 8:42 pm

All I wanted when I was a teen was a job. Unfortunately, I was in a rural area and jobs were limited. Now as a teacher, I have teens who have the same desire for employment, but unfortunately, even a major metropolitan area, they face even tougher obstacles.

billwald March 25, 2011 at 10:02 pm

My dad had to quit work in the 8th grade to help the family pay the rent. Those days will return when wages come down another ten bucks and every family will need 4 workers to pay the bills. To get around the laws Americans will probably adopt the Chinese Plan – piece work at home.

Peter March 26, 2011 at 12:47 am

How does quitting work help pay the rent??

Art Thomas March 26, 2011 at 9:31 am

I think he meant he had to quit school.

billwald March 28, 2011 at 10:42 am

Yes, quit school.

Greshams-law March 26, 2011 at 7:38 am

This is terrible; the same is happening in Europe. In the UK where I live, unemployment amongst young people (15-24) is officially around 20%. But the state sucks everyone into university based on extrapolation of their statistics; they say ‘university graduates earn such and such, so if everyone goes to university (for anything), then they’ll earn such and such’ (!).

So that figure is really about 35-40% amongst the ‘working youth’. If we consider that the state-employment drive is enormously geared towards the youth (MI5, army, police, …), then the private youth unemployment rate could be way higher. It’s really sad; this country is supposed to be the home of the classical liberal education, and it’s producing hoards of mesmerised statists.

Owen March 26, 2011 at 9:40 am

Social Security is VOLUNTARY. If that is really a cost they are worried about then STOP withholding it and STOP paying it now you’ve reduced a cost that they are worried about.

The other thing is that the minimum wage laws are unconstitutional. Since when does the government have the authority to dictate contracts? The only authority I can find for the government to dictate contracts is the fact the businesses are filing for an Employer Identification Number (EIN). If a business does not have an EIN then the anti-discrimination laws would not apply, there could be no possible Social Security payments.

Adam Smith March 26, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Minimum wage laws are not unconstitutional.
I’m curious where that argument comes from.
Certainly not the Supreme Court (where constitutionality of laws is decided).

Peter March 26, 2011 at 7:42 pm

How ’bout the … umm … Constitution? Where does it say anything about minimum wage laws?

Adam Smith March 26, 2011 at 11:52 pm

Article 1 section 8 gives Congress the authority to make laws.
Article 3 section 2 gives the Supreme Court jurisdiction over said laws.

Anthony March 26, 2011 at 11:58 pm

Wasn’t there something about the rest of the power going to the states, or the people, or something?

Peter March 27, 2011 at 1:21 am

Article 1 Section 8 gives Congress the authority to make laws “necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers”, not just any, arbitrary laws. And none of “the foregoing Powers” relate to minimum wages. Therefore Congress has no authority to make laws respecting a minimum wage.
Article 3 Section 2 gives the Supreme Court extremely limited jurisdiction (only concerning cases between people in different states, or certain “public officials”) in cases concerning laws which Congress is empowered to produce. Doesn’t apply to minimum wage laws.

Adam Smith March 27, 2011 at 12:13 pm

You’re arguing against years of legal precedent:
Congress writes laws, the Court decides if they are legal.
Just because the Constitution does not have an explicit clause concerning minimum wage laws does not mean they are unconstitutional.
C.F. Marbury v. Madison for the correct interpretation of Article 3 (judicial review).

Zorg March 27, 2011 at 1:42 pm

“Article 1 section 8 gives Congress the authority to make laws.”

According to the supposed delegated powers, genius, not by whim.
Congress has no constitutional authority to fix prices in the marketplace. That
interferes with basic rights such as the right to contract.

Funny that you would pick “Adam Smith.”

JFF March 27, 2011 at 2:46 pm

::rolls eyes::

Tom Woods, please pick up the white courtesy phone.

Adam Smith March 28, 2011 at 12:55 pm

“Congress has no constitutional authority to fix prices in the marketplace”
Well, that’s for the Supreme Court to decide (not chums like you or me)
So you’re arguing against years of legal precedent:
Congress writes laws, the Court decides if they are legal.
Just because the Constitution does not have an explicit clause concerning minimum wage laws does not mean they are unconstitutional.
C.F. Marbury v. Madison…
Oh wait, I’m repeating myself…D’oh!

Adam Smith March 28, 2011 at 8:08 pm

The Constitution says nothing about marriage, either.
Does that mean that marriage is unconstitutional?

augusto March 28, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Adam Smith,

I don’t understand why you are trying to derrail this conversation.

You say “The Constitution says nothing about marriage, either. Does that mean that marriage is unconstitutional?”

Answer: no, marriage, merely defined as a voluntary arrangement between two consenting adults is not unconstitutional. The government imposing a restrictive definition of marriage, on the other hand, can be interpreted as unconstitutional.

Adam Smith March 28, 2011 at 9:57 pm

Not derailing the conversation at all.
People are arguing that because the Constitution says nothing about minimum wage laws, they are unconstitutional. Well, by that logic, marriage is also unconstitutional, as the Constitution says nothing about marriage.

billwald March 28, 2011 at 10:46 am

Minimum wage sets the floor in the race to the bottom of the food chain. What is the lowest pay you would accept in today’s market if there was no minimum wage?

How low could wages get before stealing looked like a better deal?

Michael A. Clem March 28, 2011 at 11:14 am

Which doesn’t explain why minimum wage increases are just catching up with low-end wages. Or why so many workers earn more than minimum. Same old, tired assertions without anything to back it up.
And if the Fed would stop inflating the money supply, we would see deflation, and workers wouldn’t need such a high nominal wage to cover their expenses and more.

Nathan Beal March 26, 2011 at 10:43 am

Where I went to high school you were required to get a work permit in order to gain employment. The steps, as far as I could find from the mire of bureaucracy at my school when I was there, were:

1. Find an employer who was willing to extend a job offer to you that would stay open for about a month while you did all the paper work.
2. Fill out the application for a work permit and get it signed by all your teachers, and your academic advisor, and the ROP advisor, and your parents. (if anyone refused to sign it you could not be legally employed)
3. Bring it in to your prospective employer and hope that all the conditions of employment on the permit were acceptable, then get his signature.
4. turn it in to the school and hope that they got around to actually approving it before your employer gave up on hiring you.
5. Once the permit came through all you had to do to keep it was turn in your weekly time card to the school to prove that you weren’t working longer hours than you were permitted. (if you failed to turn it it, or worked longer than allowed, your permit would be revoked)

There may be a few errors in there, since I never made it all the way through the process, but the idea certainly comes across. Anecdotally, I would say that only about 3-5%of my class mates were able to complete the process and gain employment.

Sione March 27, 2011 at 12:56 am

Nathan

That’s appalling. I hope you changed school.

Sione

Nathan Beal March 28, 2011 at 11:12 am

That was district wide policy. Every school within 30 minutes of my house had the same policy. To get into a school in another district would require a different set of paperwork that would usually get “lost” by the district administrators. They took their monopoly status very seriously and protected themselves vigorously against allowing students to leave. Also, at that time I was a statist republican, so I didn’t have as much of a problem with it as I do now.

El Tonno March 26, 2011 at 7:18 pm

“concluded that the highest ‘mental age’ we can reach is fifteen and a half.”

I don’t think so. I can’t remember having had much clear thought at fifteen and a half and several years afterwards.

R Lee March 27, 2011 at 6:43 am

Personally I find the idea of fifteen year olds “thinking clearly” ludicrous. True, at fifteen I could think ten times faster, learn ten times faster, than I can at 67. But clearly? Laughable.

I spent 50+ years freeing myself from the religious, philosophical garbage I was brought up with. Only when I finally learned to dump all that and look at the world with open eyes did I advance in my ability to think clearly. Having actual experience with life and the empirical evidence obtained by it also plays an important part. It’s the old “blind men and the elephant” story; one has to come to a full realization that the elephant has many parts.

John April 10, 2011 at 9:46 pm

That’s right. They need to work because the only way to get jobs back to the U.S. without using illegal immigrants is to expand the child labor base. The coming financial-pocalypse is going to send us all back to the middle ages anyway, so they need to work on their job-serfing skills instead of their net-surfing ones.

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