Sunday, June 03, 2012

Surprising Obliviousness

So I read through this story on college grads "kids" moving back in with their parents and how it is a good thing for them.  On the face of it: duh.  In a crappy economy with very expensive cost of living (housing and student loan debt in particular), the ability to move back in with mom and dad is a sensible thing to do and a very smart move from a financial/career perspective.

But the professor author, who should really know better, makes this seem like a good thing.  It isn't.  It's something that happens when the job market sucks, the rent is too damned high, and students (and their parents) have to take on crippling levels of debt to go to college...which is pretty much required as the job market for college grads is only crappy and not non-existent.

The bigger problem with the piece is this however:
Both parents and children understand that in a world where the young are saddled with debt and find it difficult to quickly enter a career, parental support — where possible — is indispensable. [my bold]
It isn't always possible.  In fact grads and students with more debt, with less family support and therefore with greater need to get a job (any job) as soon as possible are most likely to not have this family support available.

The entire piece seems to say "it's okay that your son/daughter is at home, they aren't loosers, they are clever and will have better futures as a result" but the "your" in this case isn't struggling families. It's families that can afford to have their adult children live in the house and sponge off mom and dad.  Yes, the economy sucks, and it sucks for the children of upper middle class and higher parents, but is this professor unable to comprehend that it may really, really suck for those of his students who don't have that luxury?!?

Rather than console those who don't really need the economy to pick up too badly he should use his post to educate those parents as to exactly how bad things are and encourage them to maybe do something about it.

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