Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Fantasy of a Vast Upper Middle Class

Not every child should go to college.  Many have talents that are more well-suited for trade schools and apprenticeships.  The push for everyone to get a college education, that most will never use, and will force them into debt for many years to follow, is an unfortunate by-product of trying to 'level the playing field'.  Additionally, on the flip side, many of those who will be pursuing professions that once required a bachelor's degree, now require Masters or PhDs, forcing them into even more debt and delaying their earning potential. 

The dilution in the value of a college education is harmful to everyone.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Reflecting 1st World Problems onto a 3rd World

I've said before that efforts to improve wages in developing countries falls short of considering economies of scale.  It seems that the America in particular has a tendency to cast 1st world US problems on the rest of the world.  We help women in the amazon sell hammocks globally, but have not confronted the imposed role of women in their society.  We ship computers to Africa to bridge the 'tech divide', but they are still at the bottom of Maslow's hierarchy and break the equipment down, scrapping them for the value of the metals they contain.

There are basic needs and social divides that must be confronted before assuming that the developing world needs what we think they need.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A Market Punishing to Mothers

Women now more than ever before should be considering entrepreneurship as an alternative to traditional or on/off-ramp career models.  Particularly for those who want children, the opportunity cost is precipitously dwindling and the barriers to entry are not as high as many would think, especially for women-owned businesses.  It is not an easy path, but in the long run, it may help many women use their knowledge and skills toward building an extraordinarily fulfilling, creative, and profitable endeavor while lending the flexibility for a family.

Additionally, according to the Kauffman Foundation's website, only 25% of new businesses are started by women--- apparently, we still have some catching up to do.