I agree with many others that this has a lot to do with minimum wage. Without
the minimum wage, companies would be willing to create more entry level jobs.
With more jobs available, there would be greater competition for employees,
which is done using wages. Yes, many jobs will not pay much, but a teenager
living at home with his parents doesn't necessarily need that much. You can
always find people who have to struggle, and hopefully they would be able to
work their way up to be able to make more, but the more people try to regulate
the free market, the greater the unintended consequences. The free market is not
perfect, but it does tend to even itself out.
The giant elephant in the room everyone is tap-dancing around is the fact that
illegal aliens -- often working for EVEN LESS than minimum wage -- now are
taking a great many of the jobs once performed by American teenagers. The
numerous calls we're seeing for LOWERING the minimum wage -- and even
suspending child labor laws(!) -- points to the pure avarice and greed which has
become such a prominent part of commerce in Utah.
To Cinncinatus:Provo has the highest teem EMPLOYMENT rate
("Provo, Utah, has the highest teen employment rate in the United States
with about 49 percent of people aged 16 to 19 finding jobs, Hartford Business
reported.")This is a shockingly strong argument for less
government intrusion and price control in labor markets. Teens in Provo should
have a very difficult time finding work relative to their peers nationwide given
the competition for part-time work from tens of thousands of college students in
town. Instead, Provo has some of the lowest teen unemployment in the nation!Likely drivers of Provo's strong job market? 1) Young, growing
demographics. 2) Entrepreneurism: A lot of teens work for highly
entrepreneurial businesses - I know a lot of them in town. 3) A right to work
state keeps costs of hiring and firing down, so employers have less risk. 4) A
fiscally conservative state that gets out of the way of business (the libs hate
this, but it is a key driver of a strong economy). 5) Demand for jobs driven by
families who can't afford for the children to sit at home and play video
games, and 6) a strong work ethic in the local culture.
As a former business owner, a pizza place, I couldn't hire teens for the
most part. Child Labor laws forbade teen delivery drivers under 18, no teens
using the mixer either and no teen younger than 16 around the oven or the dough
roller. In a small town I employed between 4 and 10 part time employees. All
of these jobs should have been filled by teens who wanted to work instead I had
to hire people who were over 18 and pay them a minimum wage that Nancy Pelosi
made sure was so high that my small business wasn't profitable enough to
justify the many hours and effort to keep it open. (So much for job creation)
Too much government regulation and not enough common sense once again destroys
opportunity along with the economy.
A teen could be 18-19 or a college age student which could skew the statistics.
A good amount of teens actually in the high school where I teach do NOT have
jobs. A good deal of those actually desire jobs.
RG: Lowering the minimum wage for teenagers would make little or no sense.
First of all, it would be a serious disadvantage for those adults who are
working for minimum wage. If you were struggling to get by, how would you feel
about being passed over for a job in favor of a teenager living at home simply
because they could pay him less? It also creates resentment in the workplace
when you have two people doing the same work and one is paid less simply because
of his age.As far as job creation, I used to run a small business.
When I hired people, it was because I had work that needed to be done. The
amount of work determined when and who I hired; not what I had to pay them.
Paying half as much wouldn't have meant hiring twice as many people because
from a management standpoint it makes no sense at all to hire more people than
If you go to the grocery store meat department and prime rib and hamburger are
the same price, which will you choose? If an adult worker and a teenager both
want the job to flip burgers at your restaurant, you'll hire the adult.
Unless...there's an economic reason for choosing the younger guy. Minimum
wage assures more meanial jobs for adults and fewer for teens. If the teen can
offer his or her services for less than minimum wage, there will be more jobs
for teens. What about the adult? The easy route of a meanial job won't be
there and he or she will be forced to become more qualified. Government can help
with training. For the youth, getting a job, any job, regardless of pay, is
essential for experience, work habits, and resume for the next job that pays
better and is more in demand. For the adults, elect a president who understand
real job creation, not phony government rigged jobs that last a year and are
gone. Turn the private sector on and it will create new jobs, workers will be in
demand and wages will rise.
Nosea......you sound ungrateful for the opportunity to be a part of two of the
great success stories in corporate history.? Perhaps next time, you should go
to the bank and risk losing everything you have in a make or break world and not
take the easy way out in a 9-5.....that's how you become the exceptional
1%! And don't forget that once you arrive, you too will be now paying more
than half of what you earned in taxes, while those who work for you pay little
or none! Who will be complaining that you don't pay enough?
@Nosea,I have a clue, If it weren't for the 1%, you
wouldn't even have a job to build computers..., so you're welcome.It was the investment risk of the 1% who generated the jobs in the first
place, and the 99% who risked nothing that complain that they don't get
their "fair share".If you don't like your lot in life,
or feel that you are getting your fair share, then I would suggest putting your
own investment out there, start your own company, and then divide your earnings
equally amongst all your employees.
@ 1Reader: When I entered the work force in 1971, the minimum wage was $1.60
per hour and most men figuring to start a family felt they needed 2.50 per hour
(with insurance)to make it. The cost of living has risen about eight times
since then, at least for "big ticket" items. You do the math. I doubt
that you realize how many working adults are receiving assistance payments,
which amounts to more corporate welfare than otherwise. Also, if your employees
have a tech school certificate or a bachelors degree they shouldn't accept
less than $20 an hour. I'm glad people are waking up to this issue.
I don't see youngins' going around house-to-house looking for
yardwork. When I was a kid, jobs were scarce, but I could always count on
someone needing their lawn cut, edges trimmed and some needed weeding. Five
bucks was five bucks and I was glad to get it!
Well, 1 Reader, I guess it all depends on what kind of job you are asking people
Cincinnatus Sorry but I think you read the Provo stat wrong. The article says
Provo has the highest "employment rate" meaning the most teens WITH
jobs. Kind of changes your point, I believe. Personally, I've told my
kids that if they are heavily involved in school activities which take up their
spare time and teach good work habits, I'm okay with them not having a job
during the school year. So far, the 2 that are now out of the house, have done
well in college and are great workers with careers well on their way. Having a
job as a teen is only one way to learn the right skills for a life-long career.
Playing video games and surfing the net are not among them.
The job market has gone out of whack. I cannot find hardly any help for under
$20/hr. People don't want to work for less than that--which means I cannot
afford the help I need, and others don't earn what they need or want.
Government assistance is typically easier for many than working (for less). If
we raise the minimum wage, this will get worse.
Bottom line, the out-of-work financial planner needs that job flipping burgers
and that's that.
TimD:I have worked at both Microsoft and Intel, designing both the
hardware and the software of the computers you are so grateful for -- so thank
you for your praise (and I am far from the 1%). I assure you the 1% has done
very little in way of actually building these computers, by the way. The very
fact that that the 1% take an increasing portion for themselves when so many
more are thrown into poverty, and absolutely struggling to make it on the bottom
(no jobs from the "job creators" remember), bespeaks loudly their
callousness and, yes, utter contempt and condescension for the rest of us. Get a
Younger teens who have never worked obviously don't have the experience as
many adults. Giving employers a break from minimum wage and child labor laws
could help employ more teens. But then you also have the insurance issue. They
may be more likely to be injured on jobs with physical risks (e.g. construction)
and their driving skills are not as well developed making them insurance risks.
I think there is a problem with the over all premise of this article.I have three children who are in the job market- all three have jobs. Even
the youngest, at 16, is working 25 hours a week. I'm not discounting that
the job market is tougher than it was when I was their age, but I think kids are
pickier these days about what they are willing to do (just like some adults).
I've heard some kids whine about taking "dirty" jobs (fast food,
janitorial, etc.).Pointing out Provo as an example of the highest
teen unemployment in the nation is fundamentally flawed. Provo (let's be
real here) is not a huge city. It is also dominated by two very large
universities (yes, technically UVU is in Orem). Between those two schools, you
have over 65,000 college students many of whom also need jobs. As an employer,
I'd be more likely to hire a college student over a high school student
(maturity, experience, work history, etc.)
Nosea, my experiences is that it's not the 1% at the top that are
condescending, but some within the 99% like yourself. As I'm typing on my
computer (developed by some in the 1%) using software (developed by others in
the 1%) I for one am grateful that we have smart, entrepreneurial people in this
nation. I'm not in the 1%, but if I were I would do a lot of social good
like many in the 1% do.
jrgl: I'm not sure where in the article it discusses the minimum wage, and
how many teens vs. adults earn it. But speaking of the minimum wage, if there
could be a lower minimum wage for teens, a lot more of them would get jobs. Then
they'd have experience, and then they could get a raise or get a new job
with a higher wage.
To "jrgl" of Cedar City, who suggests this story somehow, "blows a
hole in the theory that teenagers are the only ones making minimum wage and
therefore no change is necessary". I've never heard or seen anyone
actually theorize that, "teenagers are the only ones making minimum
wage", you have managed to have a completely 180 degree out of phase
interpretation of this information.The fact that teenagers are
having an ever more difficult time finding work actually confirms the worry that
raising the minimum wage will put a consequently decreasing number of
entry-level jobs into a pricing regime that **increases** competition for those
jobs and place teenagers at an even greater disadvantage.The biggest
problem of not finding work is not simply the already substantial problem of not
having an income, it is not gaining the experience of work that adds to
one's skills and general ability to work.My first formal job
was as a janitor's assistant at an elementary school. I was 13 and earned
the princely wage of $1.25/hr. Not surprisingly, what I learned about being
reliable and working hard was worth far more to me in the long run than the
It's a tough job market, but don't be so hasty to discount lazy.
But the "job creators" are creating all these jobs for everyone, just
ask the 1% -- we should be grateful. We should be worshiping the 1%, as they are
so benevolent (or is it condescending?) to the rest of us.
Kind of blows a hole in the theory that teenagers are the only ones making
minimum wage and therefore no change is necessary.