U.S. News & World Report
April 20, 2012
America has long been a country where almost everyone, including the poor and unskilled, could get a job. Given the will to do a reasonable day's work, a job was a passport to economic and social well-being; it was the fount of self-esteem and the foundation of family life. Indeed, work was Life.
More than 15 million Americans no longer have that passport to Life. Think of it as roughly the entire population of the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Arkansas, Iowa, and Oklahoma, all standing idle—every man, woman, and child. The traditional breadwinners, namely men between the ages of 25 and 54, are among those hardest hit. According to an Investor's Business Daily/TIPP poll, some 25 percent of households include someone who is unemployed and looking for work. As well as laying waste to work, to the equivalent of losing every job created in the last decade, the Great Recession has visited us with reduced incomes, declining home equity, and a growing contraction in credit.
Government leaders — at least some of those present — actually seemed to believe they could, through legislation and spending, increase entrepreneurship and innovation. They asked questions such as: What legislation can we enact to build innovation ecosystems, facilitate mentorship, and teach entrepreneurship? They didn’t seem to understand that these are things entrepreneurs do—not governments. Read More