Oh Woe is Me!

2017 January 15
by drdog09

Something making the rounds on the Internet —

The generational gap is a central dilemma for the incoming presidency of Donald Trump, who pledged a return to the prosperity of post-World War II America. The analysis also hints at the issues of culture and identity that divided many voters, showing that white millennials — who still earn much more than their blacks and Latino peers — have seen their incomes plummet the most relative to boomers.

Andrea Ledesma, 28, says her parents owned a house and were raising kids by her age. Not so for her.

Ledesma graduated from college four years ago. After moving through a series of jobs, she now earns $18,000 making pizza at Classic Slice in Milwaukee, shares a two-bedroom apartment with her boyfriend and has $33,000 in student debt. “That’s not at all how life is now, that’s not something that people strive for and it’s not something that is even attainable, and I thought it would be at this point,” Ledesma said.

Her mother Cheryl Romanowski, 55, was making about $10,000 a year at her age working at a bank without a college education. In today’s dollars, that income would be equal to roughly $19,500. Romanowski said she envies the choices that her daughter has in life, but she acknowledged that her daughter has it harder than her. “I think the opportunities have just been fading away,” she said.

Source Original source here.

Its drivel with a capital D.

Lets analyze the original text first —

* She graduated from college. Ok, but with what degree? My bet it was something with low value in the marketplace, more later on this. Lacking that piece of information is the tell for this piece which is I suspect a different version of ‘the homeless problem’ that crops up every time a Republican is in office.

* She has had several jobs and is now making pizza. Smells like emotional problems. Can’t handle even the most menial of tasks.

* She is making $18k. There is only $1.5k difference between her and her mother’s earnings at the same age, adjusted. That is a trifle money wise. Her problem is debt which circles back to the observation as to what she graduated with. She chose poorly with her education.

So other than he debt load dear Ledesma economically is on track compared to her mother.

I believe this is her LinkedIn profile. If so it explains a lot. She has been doing mostly NGO and community service work as either a volunteer or low hourly wage as public service orgs are notorious as to pay scales.

Lets look at the broader indexes economically. First I will link to this. Over the period of the graph (5yr) EVERYONE dropped 7.5% less than in 2002. (the 1% excepted) Couple that with the fact that its the 35-55 contingent where earnings are the highest and it puts Ledesma’s situation in its proper perspective. Earnings are not a static item over a lifetime. You earn low in the beginning, gain skills and your earnings increase over time. Barring a tragic event what one is making at 55 is probably double or triple what one is making at 25.

The broader indexes indicate that salary growth has been static for all age groups for nearly 20 years. It is not just a Millennial problem. For the Millennial, the core problem IS education. There are not enough positions requiring a college degree for all of them. Automation has decreased the demand even further. How do we know this? From the original article —

Median income for black millennials has fallen just 1.4 percent to $27,892. Latino millennials earn nearly 29 percent more than their boomer predecessors to $30,436.

Consider Black Millennials as the societal floor for earnings in their age/education. It has only dropped 1.4% compared to their parents! So one could ask the question, are Millennial Whites being stupid with their education dollar? I suspect they are if they are following in Ledesma’s footsteps. Public sector community service is noble but low paying for all but the very top of the org chart.

Ledesma is a good example of what is wrong. Sure the economy has not been booming but everyone but the 1% are in that boat. No, its education, its inflated value relative to lifetime earnings and the induced drag of debt load on those who chose poorly. Attack that problem. Educational institutions should be required to compare their offerings per program vs all other options in the marketplace. Hard to do? Nope, BLS, regardless of their patty cakes with numbers, have already compiled the annual earnings by occupation on their website.

Sadly Ledesma probably fell for the ‘Life of Julia’ pap; followed in Julia’s footsteps and is now reaping the lack of results. I have some sympathy for her but in the end it was her choice to make.

Press on Ledesma, but get a second job and pay off the debt as quickly as you can.

39 Responses leave one →
  1. 2017 January 15 5:14 am
    bc3b permalink

    drdog09 –

    Agree 100%. Andrea has two problems: 1) the national economy in general and 2) likely her major.

    The first problem is that the US has an economy and fiscal policies which have harmed its citizens. Through things like NAFTA, we have shafted our own citizens to benefit people in other countries. Of course, that has not all been for charity’s sake. It has tremendously benefitted the rich and powerful through illegal immigration, H1B visas, etc.

    Andrea’s second problem is her major. She is a communications major (conflict management) from University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. This ties to my post yesterday regarding 25 colleges where alumni make less than high school graduates. Fortunately, for Andrea’s sake, she attended UW – Milwaukee (tuition $9,882) instead of the colleges posted yesterday and was a commuter student. So, her debt is manageable – in the neighborhood of $30,000 as opposed to the $100,000+ she would have rang up at one of those private liberal arts colleges. Four years at UW-Milwaukee cost her half of what a year at Oberlin costs (tuition, room and board).

    Part of Andrea’s problem is that colleges do a very poor job of guiding students in making career choices by not requiring freshmen to take a “careers” course in which they would study careers that various majors will lead to (job potential, special requirements, growth, potential salaries, etc.). Perhaps the reason they don’t offer such a course is to protect faculty members who teach useless subjects.

    Andrea she seems to be a bit of a SJW, so she probably doesn’t understand how things like illegal immigration, H1B visas, welfare, etc. affect all Americans, including her..

    Another problem Andrea faces is that she will soon be 30 with no practical career experience.

    Trump can help improve the national economy and personal average earnings but he can’t help people overcome poor personal choices.

  2. 2017 January 15 6:45 am
    drdog09 permalink

    Something I did not point out and should have is that the original CNBC article is FAKE NEWS. For Andrea its reality, its her life even with the poor choices she made. But the fake comes in comparing her situation with the general Millennial populace who even by the articles admission are doing better than Andrea.

    Something else neither I or the article explored — do you need to be doing better than your parents? Guess what, in the main even the parents are not doing as good as they were just a decade ago. My father built a console stereo out of a heathkit because we could not afford to buy one. $400. Now you can get the stereo, calculator, phone, computer in a single device that can be had for $300 new. Many items in life have gone down in price while others have not.

    Over the life of this country doing better than your parents has not been guaranteed and some generations have experienced treading backwards. Fact it happened just two generations ago with the Greatest Generation.

  3. 2017 January 15 6:54 am
    drdog09 permalink

    BC, you are right about the SJW aspect. She spent 5 semesters getting a peace studies certificate.

  4. 2017 January 15 7:27 am
    drdog09 permalink

  5. 2017 January 15 7:28 am
    justrand permalink

    drdog: “Ledesma probably fell for the ‘Life of Julia’ pap”

    Bingo! Then again, she might have based her life on this:

  6. 2017 January 15 7:32 am
    justrand permalink

    the key to “success” for the SJWs of today is to achieve Victim Status…and the “higher” up the Victim Scale the better!

    is she “White”? That is a definite bummer…’cause you have to shed your “White Privilege” before you can begin to “climb” the Victim Status scale.

  7. 2017 January 15 7:43 am
    drdog09 permalink

    6, so true.

  8. 2017 January 15 7:55 am
    JBoz permalink

    Another problem for Andrea is that between her chosen profession of working menial jobs like slicing pizza and saving the planet in her spare time, she is unlikely to meet an ambitious, motivated man (assuming she’s heterosexual) who has some bonafide income potential. Instead, she’s far more likely to hook up with some dude with dreadlocks, piercings and a facial tat. Together, they will have combined income lower than I was making at the age of 28…and that’s real dollars to real dollars, not inflation adjusted.

    There is a big problem the participation trophy generation. Expectations. I fully expected to get a low playing, crappy but professional job out of college…we all did. They were resume builders. We paid our dues. My feeling was as long as I could put on a tie, get some decent business experience, and have something good to put on my resume, I was fine with it. My first job out of college in 1981 was $17,000. It sucked, but I worked hard at it for 2 years, got excellent reviews and a couple of modest raises, then transferred within the same to a different department and got an inside sales job, essentially supporting the field sales guys (yes, guys). By age 27, I had enough exposure to the sales world that I went for and got a decent sales job. Now I was making close to $30k, and it went up from there, and in my mid 30’s I moved into sales management, and eventually into bigger and bigger roles. Today’s millennial, after growing up on participation trophies, would never accept that first job that I took back in 1981. They don’t want to start at the bottom…they are way too special for that.

    I had an opening on my team a few years ago for someone who could manage travel, and negotiate with the hotels for meeting space as my sales folks fanned out across the country. It was a good, entry level job and we specifically wanted a recent college grad. One of the applicants told our recruiter “I’m not looking for a job where I’m making travel plans for someone else…I want a job where someone is making travel plans for ME.” So, while she could have gotten that job, gotten paid reasonably well with great benefits, proven herself and in a couple of years started moving up the ladder inside a Fortune 25 corporation, she’s probably making coffee right now at Starbucks and telling herself, and her friends that she’s just doing this temporarily until she can find the “right job”…you know, that job that requires no experience…and where she gets to wear Prada shoes and travel the world on an expense account. After all, she’s entitled to it!

  9. 2017 January 15 8:00 am

    Gee, what was their first clue? I guess it is impossible to state the obvious without doing a ‘study.’


    Fits in nicely with the topic.

  10. 2017 January 15 8:12 am
    bc3b permalink

    I woman I work with also has a 28 year old daughter. She went to Central Michigan and got a degree in physical therapy. She went to University of West Virginia on a scholarship and got her masters majoring in athletic training. After graduation she got a job as an athletic trainer for a high school. She hated it – being at night and weekend games.

    Last summer she got a job in outside sales. She is far happier, working normal hours, having weekends free and making about $60k.

    One of her instructors at West Virginia advised the students to have a back-up plan because 50% of athletic trainers leave the field in the first five years.

  11. 2017 January 15 8:20 am
    bc3b permalink

    brucefdb #9 –

    While there always was a strong liberal bias, it truly has become left-wing indoctrination. And it remains long after college. That’s why counties where I live (Oakland) and JBoz lives (DuPage) that are upper middle class (with the majority of residents college graduates) are much more liberal than they were 20 years ago.

  12. 2017 January 15 8:34 am
    JBoz permalink

    Bozlet #1 is a serious student, very life sciences oriented and is planning on working towards med school.
    Bozlet #2 has ADHD, smart, struggles a bit academically but enough to maintain a solid B average, and is the life of the party…will talk to anyone, loves money, admires Trump, and is relentlessly persuasive when he wants something. He’s an absolute charmer.

    So, in a few years I may have a doctor and a salesman. And it wouldn’t surprise me a bit if the salesman out earns the doctor.

  13. 2017 January 15 9:42 am

    I like how you ended the post with something uplifting. 🙂
    Not picking the blond this week, going 2nd from the left…cause if you look close she’s got some tat on her waist line. 😉

  14. 2017 January 15 9:44 am
    justrand permalink

    JBoz, I know you do anyway, but treasure that ADHD kiddo. Had they been diagnosing that when I was a kid I would’ve a “Poster Child” for it. My mind was always going a million miles an hour and I was fascinated by (read: “distracted by”) everything! :).

    Yes, I wound up “Deplorable”…but I’m otherwise fine (though my wife notes I am STILL easily distracted!)

  15. 2017 January 15 9:49 am

    4 – Drug testing them and moving them out…. Is this like xmas in january or something? Darn just read it…they’ll probably just end up next door in the ExOffbldg. The farther away the better, not just to annoy them but too keep them from interacting with non WH-press office people, also makes leakers running over the the press a tiny bit more obvious. That excuse is actually real about space, but they should maybe thing about that as reason for cutting down on creds period, or having a rotating system, that way less people getting day-to-day chummy with all those around them.

  16. 2017 January 15 10:19 am
    JBoz permalink

    JR #14 – me too. For me, the process of figuring out how to cope with it and find work-arounds is what shaped me. My learning and mastery of almost everything never came from the traditional textbook, but was my own process of trial and error. Even piano, I couldn’t read music, but I would sit for hours and experiment until I could play a piece by ear. Math, same thing…I couldn’t follow the prescribed process to save my life, but I could noodle with a problem in my own way, and solve even the most complex ones than nobody else could. But I had no idea how I got there, couldn’t show my work, and would invariably get dinged. Because I had (and still have) this, and learned to deal with it, I have become over the years an excellent creative problem solver, often able to look at things completely differently than all those “great textbook learners.”

  17. 2017 January 15 10:47 am
    drdog09 permalink

    Near Fake News from WaPo, again — http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/01/14/fake-news-wash-post-changes-story-on-trump-firing-d-c-natl-guard-general/ — Said general was not fired. He decided to quit at noon essentially abandoning his post with his troops deployed.

    Good riddance.

  18. 2017 January 15 11:49 am

    17 – That’s quite a different story than originally reported, wow, did they make up the original quote used from the guy too or did they just yank that out of context?

    Btw one of the British papers published fake news yesterday that Putin and Trump agreed to meet in iceland in March.
    Both moscow and Trump team said, not only is that not true but they’ve not even had any discussions about specifically meeting other then in the generic sense about eventually meeting each other eventually during the short election morning congrats call.

    I see lying Brennan is lecturing Trump again today, doesn’t like being compared to Nazi propaganda…well don’t try and feed people such and you wouldn’t get so compared jackass. Hope your desk and prayer rug are packed up and cleared out already, 6 more days jackass, enjoy it.

    On the possible positive news side:
    I doubt she runs… the shocker in the piece, which I guess shouldn’t be a shocker actually is iCarly wants to lose another try at the Senate.

  19. 2017 January 15 12:10 pm
    drdog09 permalink

    Laura would have to arrange the pay calculus. She is probably making ?x more than a Senators salary. But it would be quite entertaining to see her running a campaign.

  20. 2017 January 15 12:14 pm

    19 – Yup from pay perspective (which is why I doubted WH press office), I don’t see her doing this either.

  21. 2017 January 15 12:52 pm
    bc3b permalink

    drdog09 #19 –

    Don’t underestimate how your income can increase while you are a member of Congress. Congress is filled with millionaires.

  22. 2017 January 15 12:56 pm
    gnqanq permalink

    bc3b – day trading with insider information (legal for them).

  23. 2017 January 15 1:08 pm
    bc3b permalink

    Someone has to pay pensions of former local and state Kalifornia officials, In many cases their pensions are 20% or more than the highest years’s salary. I am glad it’s JR, Bruce, TLS and JM and not me.


  24. 2017 January 15 3:38 pm
    drdog09 permalink


    Well they will until said entity files bankruptcy, which several CA towns have already done.

  25. 2017 January 15 4:37 pm
    justrand permalink

  26. 2017 January 15 5:01 pm
    drdog09 permalink

    Another American institution bites the dust — http://nypost.com/2017/01/14/the-greatest-show-on-earth-will-shut-down-after-146-year-run/ — Ringling Bros is closing down after 146yr run. If you are ever in Sarasota FL go see the Ringling Museum. It is not just about the circus. There are many european master paintings, sculptures and antiquities there as well.

  27. 2017 January 15 7:14 pm
    TLS permalink

    #28 Ringing Bros probably couldn’t compete with the free circus that is Washington DC

  28. 2017 January 15 7:19 pm
    drdog09 permalink


    Good point.

  29. 2017 January 15 7:22 pm
    justrand permalink

    Projection…the Left’s “tell”. My post for tomorrow! 🙂

  30. 2017 January 15 7:36 pm
    President Paul permalink

    The monster who made it to American shores and why Connor McGregor will not be able to defeat Khabib
    Khabib Nurmagomedov – Rise of a Savage

  31. 2017 January 15 7:56 pm
    President Paul permalink

    Trump Responds To CIA Chief Brennan, Asks “Was He The Leaker Of Fake News?”


  32. 2017 January 16 6:44 am

    34 – Love it. (I hope he has some food tasters though)
    FBN guest Col. something or other was quite literally and without equivocation calling Brennan a criminal on-air this morning (caught the 7am hour of mornings with ‘maria’ – boy is that degan such a nasty sour-puss), and detailing why he has little doubt Brennan and some other top level intel officials should be looking for good lawyers after this week. lmao


  33. 2017 January 16 6:55 am
    MI Conservative permalink

    Did centurylink figure out there are two sides in America and trying to appeal to both?


  34. 2017 January 16 7:54 am
    justrand permalink

    Despite the repeated mixing of sports metaphors, this article is excellent! 🙂


  35. 2017 January 16 8:28 am
    drdog09 permalink

    You bet they should be scared — https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-01-15/trump-team-may-move-briefings-from-west-wing-to-accommodate-more — Exclusive access was part of the power base the networks used to control the narrative.

  36. 2017 January 16 9:57 am

    Funny with just a couple days to go guess who the FBI finally took back into custody today? Omar Matineen’s wife, remember her and how she quietly disappeared once it wasn’t politically good for her to be around.

    My guess with a whole bunch of eyes about to be taking a hard look at Comey, the FBI and some of their investigations over the last couple years, someone over there is trying to get out in front of things.

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