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Youth Unemployment: No Gumption—or No Chance?

You can't write about the problem of youth unemployment, as we did in "The Lost Generation" (Cover Story, Oct. 19), without reigniting what seems to be a smoldering conflict between young and old. In responses to the article, boomers blamed a spoiled Gen Y, while the jobless young slammed their elders for leaving the economy in such a mess. Mostly, though, we heard from young people who are, as our article said, bright, eager—and unwanted. &mdashPeter Coy

I have no sympathy for those in a lost generation that have had everything handed to them on a platter and [now] have to start a job...and work their way up. What about the generation of 40- to 60-year-olds who have had their retirement funds wiped out and [are] facing a jobless recovery? The young have years to work in the job market...to make up the loss.

Oh, by the way, many in the older generation have MBAs, too, and can't find jobs.

Screen name: Silicon Valley MBA Jobless Older Generation

I'm sick and tired of people calling my generation the "entitlement" generation, saying we're lazy and asking for a handout. The baby boomers sat by idly while [the U.S.] rang up massive amounts of debt.

Screen name: Mike Wainwright

I have a chemistry PhD from a top 10 school and can't even get an interview for a lab tech job paying $10 an hour. I'm told I'm overeducated and underqualified.

Screen name: Carly

I graduated from my university at the top of my class [and] had two internships while in school, one at a top-tier ad agency. I have had one job offer at a barbell company for $22,000 to do menial work (with a three-hour commute each day). With the climate right now, I almost wish I had taken that position.

Screen name: Amanda

When I tell people I am unemployed, the first question out of their mouths is: "How hard are you really trying to get a job?" I have been turned down for jobs I had when I was 16. It's degrading.

Screen name: Ariana

How Government Could Help Homeowners

Regarding "Return of the Mortgage Cramdown?" (What's Next, Oct. 19): The government should offer struggling homeowners, say, 15% of a house's current value in exchange for a share of the profits on a future sale of the house. Or it could finance home-improvement projects in exchange for a share of future profits. This would create demand for labor and energy-efficiency upgrades.

Roger Knights

SEATTLE

Guest Workers Aren't the Only Ones Suffering

Many U.S. citizens are suffering right now trying to find jobs, and many U.S. companies are trying to make a bigger buck on the backs of people who did not contribute to those bottom lines. ("America's High-Tech Sweatshops" Cover Story, Oct. 12). While I understand the frustration of many H-1Bers, understand ours.

Screen name: Tinsoldier

Keynes' Recipe for Addiction

When BusinessWeek begins endorsing Keynesian economics, praising two new pro-Keynes books, all hope is lost ("The Redemption of Keynes," Books, Sept. 28).

Once we require "full employment" as the bedrock of our thinking, the economy will never be more than a junkie's perpetual search for his pusher. Keynes looked to government manipulation and stimulation of the economy, which leads not to economic health but to an escalating addiction.

John Kleiner

MORAGA, CALIF.


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