Browsing Tag: employment

    Troubles in Coal Hit Railroad Employees
    Articles, Blog

    Troubles in Coal Hit Railroad Employees

    August 28, 2019


    SPEAKER: Basically, the
    railroads are a story of us. It’s important for people to
    know because it’s being lost. My name’s Adam Fotta. I’ve been a lot of places. I’ve done a lot
    of things in life, even though I’m not that old. I had my first job
    at 10, which I don’t know if they allow anymore. So the railroad was hiring
    out of Grand Junction. And it offers good money,
    benefits, health care, so I jumped on it. And it was a hope
    for a better future. It was the hope for
    the American dream. It’s no more than
    anybody else wants. But it’s the best
    job I ever had. best job I ever had. It finally felt like
    we were middle class. Coal was partially responsible
    for me chasing work because as coal slowed
    down, so did the work. And a lot of rail
    traffic is actually coal traffic, for power
    plants, exporting, things of that nature. As it hit the oil and
    gas and then it hit us. And the coal started dropping
    off immediately after that. Just absolutely amazing
    to see basically 200-year industry just
    shutdown overnight. They encourage employees to
    take pictures of the trains. And they put it on
    the company calendar. Some guys think this is
    corny and dopey and stuff. But I think it’s fantastic. It’s great. And it’s pride in what you do. This furlough affected
    me extremely hard. My wife was diagnosed with
    cancer at the same time that I was furloughed. Found out she
    definitively had cancer and I got furloughed
    at that same moment, as we were stuck in
    traffic and people were honking their horns. And that was kind of
    like, wow, this is bottom. It’s hard being optimistic
    about it all the time because I don’t know
    if the coal industry is going to– I think this
    might be a permanent change in this country. I hope that we
    figure things out, find the balance between
    the economy being viable, the environment. I’m hopeful to going back to
    work somewhere for the railroad and kind of getting my life
    back and get my debt paid down and getting my wife healthy. That’s all I want.

    Delaware State Jobs – Find Your Career in HVAC
    Articles, Blog

    Delaware State Jobs – Find Your Career in HVAC

    August 27, 2019


    If you like a challenge you will like it here,
    you’ve worked hard to get your master HVACR and your universal CFC certification. HVAC technology has had some exciting changes
    in the past few years and we need your talent to complete our team. The Division of Facilities Management is responsible
    for maintaining more the three million square feet of building space is over one hundred
    facilities statewide. Our staff of HVAC refrigeration technicians
    ensure that critical building components such HVAC units and power supplies remain continuously
    operational. Each day we plan our schedule but many times
    we can have an emergency situation occur. So if we get a call that comes in, you know
    they’ll, somebody says hey I have a rooftop unit that doesn’t run. First thing you do is gather up information,
    you know what kind of rooftop is it, there’s different types, there are some that are fed
    from chillers, some that have compressors in them, you gotta know what you’re dealing
    with, brand names, you have to deal with that type of thing Usually get, collect the information on the
    symptoms as you’re, so when you’re you know when you’re going there, you’re gonna go up
    on a rooftop it’s good to know what tools you’re gonna bring and what you can
    leave behind, So, it’s that type of thing, where, you know, you’re evaluating on the
    way to your job what it could be. Not in HVAC think about making a career change,
    HVAC might be a great fit if you have experience in hydraulics or pneumatics as it is an easy
    tie into refrigeration. A career in HVAC is very rewarding and as
    a technician with the state you have great job security as HVAC services will always
    be needed to continue to heat and cool our offices. At the state we have great work life
    balance and work a thirty-seven and a half hour week and we offer benefits that work
    for you every stage of your life. Explore a career with the State of Delaware. We love all things HVAC!

    State of the Union: Building Infrastructure and Creating Jobs at Home
    Articles, Blog

    State of the Union: Building Infrastructure and Creating Jobs at Home

    August 24, 2019


    The President:
    Next, we can put Americans
    to work today building the infrastructure of tomorrow. (applause) From — from the first railroads to the interstate highway system, our nation has
    always been built to compete. There’s no reason Europe or
    China should have the fastest trains, or the new factories
    that manufacture clean energy products. Tomorrow, I’ll visit
    Tampa, Florida, where workers will soon break
    ground on a new high-speed railroad funded by
    the Recovery Act. There are projects like that all
    across this country that will create jobs and help move
    our nation’s goods, services, and information. (applause) We should put more Americans
    to work building clean energy facilities, and give — (applause) — and give rebates to Americans who make their homes more energy efficient, which supports
    clean energy jobs. (applause) And to encourage these and other
    businesses to stay within our borders, it is time to finally
    slash the tax breaks for companies that ship our jobs
    overseas and give those tax breaks to companies that create
    jobs right here in the United States of America. (applause) Now, the House has passed a jobs
    bill that includes some of these steps. (cheers and applause) As the first order of
    business this year, I urge the Senate to do the
    same and I know they will. (cheers and applause) They will. (applause) People are out of work. They’re hurting. They need our help. And I want a jobs bill
    on my desk without delay. (applause)

    Is Raising Minimum Wage A Bad Idea?
    Articles, Blog

    Is Raising Minimum Wage A Bad Idea?

    August 22, 2019


    There’s a movement in cities across the
    country to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour. One of the most prominent advocates
    is former labor secretary Robert Reich who thinks that $15 per
    hour should be the minimum wage for the entire country, this is a bad idea. Here are three reasons why,
    first of all, it would kill jobs. One of the basic lessons of economics is
    that when the price of something goes up, people buy less of it, so, if the price of pumpkin lattes rises you
    can expect consumers to buy fewer of them. This law of demand also
    effects the market for low-skilled workers,
    raising the minimum wage means a higher cost of employing each worker which makes
    workers less affordable than before. Our coffee shop won’t keep a worker at
    a mandated $15 per hour if that worker’s efforts only result in $7.25
    per hour in added revenue. Over the course of the year, a shop
    that keeps such a worker full-time would lose $15,500, so instead,
    it would eliminate that job and evidence shows that employers in fact do
    respond in this way to minimum wage hikes. Recent research by economists
    Jeffrey Clemens and Michael Wither finds that 1.4 million jobs
    were destroyed in the late 2000s when the minimum wage rose across all 50 states
    by an average of nearly 30%, and worse, those job losses were probably suffered
    by the people who need jobs the most. This fact brings us to reason number 2, the minimum wage actually hurts
    the people we most want to help. When the minimum wage rises, the workers
    fired first and the ones hired last are those who employers judge to be
    the least productive, the inner city teen from the lousy school district or
    the immigrant with poor English will be fired before the suburban American
    teen from the excellent school district. So those who are most disadvantaged, tend to suffer the most job losses, this
    reality is compounded by the fact that raising the minimum wage causes
    more competition for jobs. A supermarket job that once paid $8 per
    hour draws more applicants when it pays $15 per hour, applicants who include
    retirees, and people with higher education who reenter the workforce only
    because of the higher wage. Because these people often have more
    skills, they squeeze out immigrants and those from disadvantaged backgrounds who
    are likely more desperate for the jobs, and certainly more desperate
    to gain job experience. The third reason is that minimum
    wage hikes aren’t necessary to give deserving workers raises. 96% of American workers today earn wages
    higher than the current minimum wage, which proves that employers don’t just
    pay the minimum that they’re obliged to pay by law. Employers respond to the value
    that each employee adds, so they can retain the best talent. It’s expensive to train new employees and businesses don’t wanna lose good
    workers to their competitors, so they raise worker pay voluntarily as
    employees gain more skills and experience. But when government imposes such
    raises by hiking the minimum wage, some of the least experienced workers
    will not only lose their current jobs, they’ll find it incredibly
    hard to find other jobs. In essence, the minimum wage cuts off
    the first rung on the employment ladder. And it’s that first, lowest paying rung,
    that provides the skills and experience workers need to
    reach the next rung, and to continue climbing their
    way to a better life.

    Articles

    Delaware State Jobs- Setting up Email Alerts

    August 20, 2019


    did you know most job postings on the Delaware
    employment link also known as DEL are typically listed for a limited amount of time and since
    we don’t want you to take any chance of missing out on your next great career opportunity. DEL offers you the option to sign up for and
    receive email alerts for positions as they become posted that are personally selected
    by you. In this video we will show you the basics
    for setting up your email alerts in the DEL system First lets go to the Delaware Employment Link
    homepage found out statejobs.delaware.gov to get started choose the email alerts icon
    to begin creating your personalized job search agent You can narrow your search down by individually
    selecting the occupational group that interests you, or broaden your search by clicking on
    the check all boxes and then submit. You will then see comprehensive list of all
    the job titles you selected. From here you then can either scroll through
    each job title one by one from A to Z or you can further drill down your selection alphabetically
    by selecting from the alphabetical listing found directly above the job titles also,
    if at any time while scrolling through this page you should decide that you would prefer
    to view positions listed by occupational group all you have to do is choose the select job
    group option found at the top of the page. Not sure what jobs to be alerted for? click on any job title to open class specification. The class specification provides a detail
    list of essential functions, knowledge, skills, and abilities and most importantly job requirements. After reviewing each job specification remember
    to close the window to make your email alert choices When you’re done choosing all the positions
    you are interested in, click the add all checked classes to my job search agent option located
    near the top of the page to view a list of your selections. If you are satisfied with your choices click
    the finish button to then be able to add your email address or click continued searching
    classes if you would like to return to the previous page and select more job titles before
    continuing once you have entered your email address click next to see the list of your
    subscription choices and you will need to select subscribe to start signing up for emails. Thank you again for your interest in career
    opportunities with the State of Delaware. Make sure you watch our other videos to help
    you in your job search.

    The big debate about the future of work, explained
    Articles, Blog

    The big debate about the future of work, explained

    August 14, 2019


    A decade ago, robots still seemed pretty limited. Now, not so much. And computers don’t just win chess any more,
    they can win Jeopardy. “Watson.” “What is the of the Elegance of the Hedgehog?” They can win Go. “There are about 200 possible moves for
    the average position in Go.” This is all happening really fast. And it’s causing some to forecast a future
    where humans can’t find work. “There will be fewer and fewer jobs that
    a robot cannot do better.” “And what are the people gonna do?” “That’s the $64,000 question.” I believe this is going to be one of the biggest
    challenges we face in the coming decades. “People who are not just unemployed. They are unemployable.” But if you ask economists, they tend to have
    a pretty different view from the futurists and Silicon Valley types. Do you worry that new technologies could cause
    mass unemployment? Yes. No. I have devoted my career to worrying about
    the labor market, particularly worrying about the living standards of low and moderate income
    workers. So I worry a lot about things. I am not worried about this. One of the reasons a lot of economists are
    skeptical about robots taking all the jobs is that we’ve heard that before. There was a spike of automation anxiety in
    the late 20s, early 1930s when machines were starting to take over jobs on farms and
    also in factories. This article from 1928 points out that there
    used to be guards who opened and closed the doors on new york subway trains, and people
    who took tickets before there were turnstiles. And I just love this quote: It says “building
    materials are mixed like dough in a machine and literally poured into place without the
    touch of a human hand.” Automation anxiety surged again in the late
    1950s, early 1960s. President Kennedy ranks automation first as
    job challenge. “Computers and automation threaten to create
    vast unemployment and social unrest” “What should I do Mr. Whipple?” “Stop him!” This article from 1958 is about 17,000 longshoremen
    who were protesting automation on the piers. And if you don’t know what longshoremen are,
    that’s because there aren’t many of them left. Technology destroyed a lot of those jobs. And yet, we didn’t run out of work. This chart shows the percentage of prime-age
    people with jobs in the US. Ever since women joined the workforce in big
    numbers, it’s stayed around 80%, outside of recessions. During this period, technology displaced some
    8 million farmers in the US, 7 million factory workers, over a million railroad workers,
    hundreds of thousands of telephone  operators, we’ve lost gas-pumpers, elevator attendants,
    travel agents. Tons of jobs have died but work persists. What you realize when you look through those
    old reports is that it’s really easy for us to see the jobs being replaced by machines. It’s a bit harder to visualize the jobs
    that come from what happens next. New technology creates jobs in a few ways. There are the direct jobs for people who design
    and maintain the technology, and sometimes whole new industries built on the technology. But the part we tend to forget is the indirect
    effect of labor-saving inventions. When companies can do more with less, they
    can expand, maybe add new products or open new locations, and they can lower prices to
    compete. And that means consumers can buy more of their
    product, or if we don’t want any more of it, we can use the savings to buy other things. Maybe we go to more sports events or out to
    dinner more often. Maybe we get more haircuts or add more day-care
    for the kids. This process is how our standard of living
    has improved over time and it’s always required workers. The key economic logic here is automation
    does indeed displace workers who are doing work that got automated, but it doesn’t actually
    affect the total number of jobs in the economy because of these offsetting effects. Warnings about the “end of work” tend
    to focus on this part and not all of this — like a widely cited study from 2013,
    “According to research conducted by Oxford University, nearly half of all current jobs
    in America –” “47 percent of all our jobs–” “47 percent of US jobs in the
    next decade or two, according to researchers at Oxford, will be replaced by robots.” That study assessed the capabilities of automation
    technology. It didn’t attempt to estimate the actual
    “extent or pace” of automation or the overall effect on employment. Now, all this doesn’t mean that the new
    jobs will show up right away or that they’ll be located in the same place or pay the same
    wage as the ones that were lost. All it means is that the overall need for
    human work hasn’t gone away. Technologists and futurists don’t deny that’s
    been true historically, but they question whether history is a good guide of what’s
    to come. Fundamentally the argument is that this time
    it’s different. That’s what I think. Imagine a form of electricity that could automate
    all the routine work. I mean, that’s basically what we are talking
    about here. And so It’s going to be across the board. And it is easy to underestimate technology
    these days. In a 2004 book, two economists  assessed
    the future of automation and concluded that tasks like driving in traffic would be “enormously
    difficult” to teach to a computer. That same year, a review of 50 years of research
    concluded that “human level speech recognition has proved to be an elusive goal.” And now? “Ok Google. How many miles has google’s autonomous vehicle
    driven?” “According to Recode, that’s because the
    company announced its self-driving car project, which was created in 2009, has racked up over
    two million miles of driving experience.” This is the textbook chart of advancement
    in computer hardware — it’s the number of transistors that engineers have squeezed
    onto a computer chip over time. Already pretty impressive, but notice that
    this isn’t a typical scale: these numbers are increasing exponentially. On a typical linear scale it would look more
    like this. It really is hard to imagine this not being
    massively disruptive. And as the authors of The Second Machine Age
    point out, processors aren’t the only dimension of computing that has seen exponential improvement. The idea of acceleration in your daily life when do you encounter that? Maybe in a car for a few seconds? In an airplane for seconds again? The idea that something can accelerate for
    decades literally just continuously is just not something that we deal with. I mean, we think in straight lines. But even though there’s been all this innovation,
    it’s not showing up in the data. If we were seeing this big increase in automation
    we would see productivity growing much more rapidly now than it usually does, and we are
    instead seeing the opposite. Labor productivity is a measure of the goods
    and services we produce divided by the hours that we work. Over time it goes up – we do more with less
    labor. We’re more efficient. If we were starting to see a ton of labor-saving
    innovation you’d expect this line to get steeper, but when you look at productivity
    growth, you can see that it has been slowing down since the early 2000s, and not just for
    the US. It’s possible that new technologies are
    changing our lives without fundamentally changing the economy. So will this all change? Will today’s robots and AI cause mass unemployment? There’s reason to be skeptical, but nobody
    really knows. But one thing we do know is that the wealth
    that technology creates, it isn’t necessarily shared with workers. When you account for inflation, the income
    of most families has stayed pretty flat as the economy has grown. One of the problems we’ve seen over the last
    40 years is that we have seen all of this rising productivity growth but actually hasn’t
    been broadly shared, it’s been captured by a thin slice of people at the top of the income
    distribution. Even if unemployment stays low, automation
    might worsen economic inequality, which is already more extreme in the US than it is
    in most other advanced countries. But technology isn’t destiny. Governments decide how a society weathers
    disruptions, and that worries people on both sides of the debate about the future of work. We’ve adopted policies that instead of really
    trying to counteract the trend caused by technology and globalization and other things, we’ve
    in many cases exacerbated them. We’ve put a wind in the back of them and
    made them more extreme. And that’s a big problem. We will probably always be fascinated by the
    prospect of robots taking our jobs. But if we  focus on things we can’t really
    control, we risk neglecting the things we can.

    Top 10 WORST Jobs in the World!!
    Articles, Blog

    Top 10 WORST Jobs in the World!!

    August 13, 2019


    From pushing people around to diving in sewage…stay
    tuned to number 1 to find out the worst jobs in the world! Number 10: Pusher. Their job is to push, and push they do! To kick of our list, let’s start with one
    of the weirdest yet necessary jobs on the planet. Although the official terms for this job is
    “railway station attendant,” nobody calls them like that…probably not even their own
    managers. To everyone, they’re simply…pushers. Okay, so what are they? Well, just imagine for a second the subway
    crowd, trying to squeeze into the next train, like wild beasts. Can you see it? Great! Now, what does a pusher do? He simply pushes passengers onto a train,
    enabling the door to close up and the train to move on. That’s the whole job, but it’s absolutely
    necessary. Humans are a funny kind: if we see that a
    subway door cannot close, very few of us would give up and actually step off the train. Plus, the crowds in major cities are so huge
    that it’s absolutely impossible to rely on passengers’ logic and empathy during the boarding
    process. Enter the pusher. Without them, subway trains would probably
    never leave, with dozens of passengers stuck in the doors. I really admire your job, but…you act kind
    of “pushy,” don’t you think? Number 9: Bering Sea Fisherman. Before we move on, take a moment to like this
    video. While you’re there, click the subscribe button
    for more videos from Zero2Hero. Don’t forget to click the little notification
    button, too! Do you remember the George Clooney movie “The
    Perfect Storm?” It’s about a group of fishermen who end up
    facing a monster of a storm and…well, let’s not spoil it for you if you haven’t seen it. Although it’s probably a bit exaggerated for
    poetic license, the truth is…life of a fisherman is really that hard. I mean, like…super hard. Especially in the Bering Sea. First of all, the weather is just terrible. Forget the romantic idea of a fisherman under
    the sun, with the breeze for a friend and sing-alongs to pass the time. No, this is real hard work, under the worst
    of climate conditions. Boats continuously get hit by huge waves,
    the air is water-soaked and the wind blows wild. Sure, the pay can be really good, but in order
    to qualify, you need great physical strength and a mind strong enough to endure the elements. This one easily fits into the category: not
    for the faint of heart. I’d definitely skip this one! Number 8: Manure Inspector. Okay, here’s another funny one. Although you won’t believe many of the jobs
    on our list, they actually all exist…including manure inspector. The job is fairly simple to do and to explain,
    but that doesn’t make it less…well, gross. The job of a manure inspector is to…inspect
    manure…duh! In order to be properly used as a fertilizer,
    manure has to be of good quality. But there’s nothing to it, you’d say, it’s
    just manure. Well, it turns out that it’s not that simple
    after all. There are strict guidelines as to what kind
    of manure can be used, since it should also be “clean,” in its own, special way. Therefore, a manure inspector has to collect
    specimens from animals and conduct all sorts of tests to make sure it’s up to par. This involves searching stool for blood, bacteria,
    and the like. It might be well paid well, but…it’s not
    the nicest of jobs. Number 7: Road Animal Collector. Now, here’s a job that’s definitely not for
    everyone. So many of us absolutely adore animals, either
    as pets or at the zoo, and we cannot bear the sight of a sick or feeble-looking animal,
    let alone one that’s splattered on the road. But unfortunately, road animals happen every
    single day. Most of them don’t happen on purpose…it’s
    simply just too hard to hit the brakes on time and avoid the worst. Many drivers get scared and panic and, instead
    of trying to avoid the hit, they accelerate and run over some poor, innocent animal. And when that happens, somebody’s got to clean
    all the mess, and that’s…the road animal collector. The job of a road animal collector is to basically
    locate the road animal, remove it from the site and dispose of it later on. Road animal collectors see all kinds of animals
    during their tenure, not just dogs and cats, as you would imagine; there are bears, wolves,
    moose, elk, kangaroo…all sorts of animals. But if you’re an animal lover, look at it
    this way: at least you don’t have to do it. Number 6: HAZMAT Diver. Yes, it sounds awesome, no doubt about it. It sounds like a superhero. What do you do, man? I’m a HAZMAT diver. But..it’s definitely not that awesome. The name HAZMAT is a coined term coming from
    “hazardous materials,” and the job of a HAZMAT diver is to safely remove hazardous materials
    of all types, which unfortunately makes this one of the most awful, most dirty, most disgusting
    jobs around. Every day, a lot of material waste goes into
    the planet’s waters, and the environment is heavily polluted. Think of poisonous chemicals, oil spillages,
    defunct sewage pipes, and so on. You probably get the idea: it’s extremely
    filthy, and moreover…it’s a grave health risk. HAZMAT divers don their special rubber suits
    and go to work. Their tools, among other things, include special
    underwater vacuum cleaners, air lifts for hoisting leaking barrels, and the like. Their suits and equipment are top-notch, but
    one small hole pierced in their suit can make room for all kinds of toxins and bacteria. No doubt about it…this is one dangerously
    awful…and awfully dangerous job. How was work, honey? Oh, fine, I swam a little in some hazardous
    liquids…same old same old. Number 5: Morgue Worker. This job has been around ever since the dawn
    of man and…it’s probably going to stick around well into the future. At least until they discover a way to create
    immortality. Although most of us couldn’t bear the sight
    of a deceased person, there are people who are in daily contact with bodies…and
    they do it for a living! It’s a tough gig, but, as they say, somebody’s
    got to do it. Morgue workers are in charge of handling and
    cleaning the corpses. These people help during autopsies, preparing bodies for the procedure…which sometimes includes organ disposal…and handle all the
    work on the body once an autopsy is finished. There is a strict training program for all
    morgue workers and, in addition to this…the job requires a lot of physical and mental
    strength, and a high level of stress tolerance because, come on, you’re practically looking
    death in the eye. No thank you, I think I’ll rather sell hot
    dogs in the park. Number 4: Sewer Swimmer. Okay, this is not the official job title,
    but I’m sure they’re known by that nickname. The technical terms is sewer cleaner, but
    in order to clean it…well, you’re gonna have to swim in it, pal. This job is present in underdeveloped and
    developing countries of the world, such as India. Remember, we’re talking about countries with
    massive populations, and one of the greatest challenges there is maintaining optimal levels
    of hygiene. That’s where the sewer swimmers step in. In order to clear up clogged sewer pipes,
    these guys need to be neck-deep in the worst of waste matter and do their best to clear
    up the mess. And the mess is…plentiful. The tools used are quite primitive: sticks,
    broom handles, an occasional metal scraper and, more often than not, bare hands. The pay is minimal, the health risk is enormous
    and the prospects are not good. All in all, one of the worst jobs this side
    of the solar system. Feel free to pass. Number 3: Renderer. I know what you’re thinking, but this has
    nothing to do with computers. It’s not that kind of rendering. This is actually pretty gross. This rendering involves converting animal
    tissue into usable materials. The workplace: your local slaughterhouse. The stench: unbearable. The atmosphere: miserable. Rendering can be done both for edible and
    industrial products, but both processes are quite disgusting. And very, very dirty. Imagine piles of lifeless animal bodies lying
    around, ready to be cut to pieces. After the cutting up routine, the meat is
    taken to fine shredding, after which comes the best part: cooking the meat in order to
    melt the bones and make a hot soup out of it. Now, the next step varies, depending on the
    end need, but that’s the basics. Pretty gross, don’t you think? Well, imagine doing it for a living. One must have quite a stomach for it. If I’d had to spend a day doing this, I’d
    probably go vegan on the spot. Number 2: Miner. The last two of our entries are pretty common,
    but in no way does it mean that they don’t deserve to be here…on the contrary. Maybe they’re not so gross, but they are definitely
    the worst jobs on the planet. Miners, or, more specifically, coal miner,
    but we’ll stick to plain miner, because we feel it should include all kinds of mining,
    given the job requirements. Mining is not the worst just in terms of the
    location, but also the actual physicality required for it. In order to be a miner, you really have to
    work hard, physically, and be able to take in long hours and terrible working conditions. And on top of everything, there’s the danger
    part: mining is an extremely dangerous job, so dangerous that some countries don’t even
    offer any kind of insurance in case of injury. A miner is almost always in the cold, dark
    and damp, spending hours on end lying down or squatting in unbearable, desperate situations. And the fatality rate is almost six times
    higher than for other jobs. A miner is literally risking his life and
    breaking his back. Depending on the country, the pay can be really
    good, all in all…mining is reserved for those who are up for the challenge. Number 1: Soldier. In order to understand why soldier is number
    one on our list, try to think outside the Hollywood box for a moment. sure, a soldier can be an honorable job, but
    that’s beside the point. The fact of the matter is that soldiers don’t
    just stand the risk of getting hit on the job…their “job” is, in a way, to get hit. It’s right there in the job description. No one wants to get hit, but come heck
    or high water, soldiers have to go into battle and risk their life. On top of this, there are months and sometimes
    even years of living away from your country, family, and friends…in an unknown land,
    with unfamiliar, people and customs, where nothing feels right. If you want to become a soldier, you need
    to have a lot of stamina, an iron mind, a strong body, and nerves of steel. And you must be prepared to die, since it
    comes with the job. It’s all great when you’re playing first-person
    shooters games, but go talk to a veteran…and you’ll see that the reality is quite different. Being a soldier is rough, tough and often…tragic. It’s definitely the worst job in the world. And let’s all hope for a world where soldiers
    would be redundant. Tell us your thoughts on the worst jobs in
    world in the comments below and…take care!

    Conductor (Episode 95)
    Articles, Blog

    Conductor (Episode 95)

    August 12, 2019


    Our next guest plays a crucial role in railway operations and maintaining safety in and around the train at all times. Let’s meet the train conductor. Hi, I am Viviana. Hi. Chantelle. Nice to meet you. Would you like to take a tour? I would. Let’s go. My name is Chantelle Doucet and I’m a conductor and locomotive engineer in Port Coquitlam. The conductor is responsible for the safe operation of trains. They don’t drive the train, but they’re involved with making sure it gets over the road safely. You’re switching out boxcars, aligning switches, putting cars in different tracks, marshalling them into the proper order for trains that will go to various destinations across the country. When you start, you’re going to meet up with your helper and your engineer. So, there’s two conductors and the engineer. And then the tower. Someone in the tower is going to give you a switch list, which tells you which cars need to be moved from what tracks to another track. And then you’ll go and get your locomotive and go start switching the cars out. I got started with the job because my uncle was an engineer and I had three generations previous to me working as railroaders. I knew I wanted a lifelong career. So what’s in that? That’s for transporting automobiles, but we transport all different types of stuff. All across Canada, right?
    Yeah. We have three types of shifts—there’s yard shifts, which are set schedules usually eight hours. They stay in the yard. And then there’s Road Switchers, they’re also a set schedule five days a week for two days off. And they can be up to ten hours and you’ll take trains about…within 50 miles of your home terminal and you’re delivering cars to customers or interchanges with other railways. And then there’s freight, which is—you’re on call 24/7 and you could be gone for up to 24 hours. So you take the train 100 miles in one direction, and then you trade off with another crew who takes it another hundred miles and this continues on until the train gets to its destination. There’s short college courses available too, to get you ready for the career. Once you’re hired by the company, you’ll be put through six months of training in the classroom and on job training. The advantage of taking these college courses is to make sure it’s something you’re interested in and give you an idea of what the job is all about. The conductor will be on the ground and sometimes they can be up to a mile away from me. So, that’s why radios come into play, but if you can see your locomotive engineer and he can see you, visibly, then we’d like to switch by hand signals. And what’s the favourite part of the job? My favourite part is probably working with all the great people.
    Nice. A lot of conductors, after they’ve been working for a long time, take the promotion of becoming an engineer and then they’ll work as both. To become a locomotive engineer there’s another six months of on job training and classroom work, too. As a conductor, you’re always working with your hands, throwing switches, aligning switches, climbing ladders, applying hand brakes, I have to turn a wheel to tighten up a chain that applies the brakes to the car. When you’re in the train yard, there’s lots of different trains moving around the yard. All the tracks are live. You need to be aware of your surroundings and very alert. So what kind of advice would you give to somebody who’s thinking about becoming a conductor? Well, it’s really great if you like variety— every day is different, but it’s a very different lifestyle— not your average nine to five job, that’s for sure. I can only imagine. Well, thanks so much for showing me around today.
    No problem. Anytime. Once again, this is Career Trek and I’m Viviana reminding you that this career could be yours. See you next time.

    Council on Jobs and Competitiveness Meets in Durham, NC
    Articles, Blog

    Council on Jobs and Competitiveness Meets in Durham, NC

    August 11, 2019


    Jeffrey Immelt:
    Okay, Mr. President,
    let’s get started. Before we get started, I
    want to introduce everybody. Chris, would you
    stand up, Chris Che? Chris is joining the group,
    runs a small business in Dayton, Ohio, $40 million business. Doubled about every three
    years, right, Chris? So he’s going to be a
    great member representing small business. Great to have Chris — President Obama:
    Just keep that going, man. Jeffrey Immelt:
    — join the group. So he’s done a great job. So, Mr. President,
    just to kick it off, we’ve been busy at work
    the last three months. I think congrats to the team. Really everybody
    has come to play. You know, we think the
    economy is getting better, but there is still volatility. Growth isn’t fast
    enough for any of us. I know you recognize
    that, as well. Jobs are both important to both
    the economy but also for the confidence of the country. The team has really had
    a very narrow focus on jobs and competitiveness. It is non-partisan. I think our sense is that the
    private sector has to drive it, but we need to work with
    government to facilitate it, and that’s really the
    attitude we’ve taken. What you’re going to hear today
    is kind of a market intelligence update from the team, so just
    give you an update on what’s going on in the world. Then Ken is going to outline
    — we’re really doing a sector-by-sector jobs plan
    that is outcomes oriented, very focused on results, and
    really what we want to make sure we’re doing is building
    a sustainable jobs plan. Then you’re going to hear
    a series of presentations that are really focused
    on supply and demand. How do we get
    people to work fast? Through training,
    financing, education, the things that we can
    move the needle on quickly, and we’ll talk about a
    few longer term ideas, like getting 10,000 engineers
    and doing things on improving the grid, IPO’s,
    things like that. And then at the
    end, Mr. President, I’ll give you an update
    on the next 90 days, but we plan to keep
    this thing going. I think there’s no one silver
    bullet on job creation. This is going to be dozens of
    programs that have metrics and accountability
    associated with it, and that’s really the spirit
    with which we’re taking this. So I’d say everybody
    here has come to play. You know, we have
    our challenges, but we’re all kind of
    products of this country. We’re all products
    of the system. We all owe something
    back to the system. And we’re all optimists
    about the long term health of the country. So that’s where we are so
    far and I’ll turn it to you. President Obama:
    Well, listen, first of all, I
    just want to thank everybody for the seriousness, the diligence
    that you’ve displayed already on this Jobs Council. When we formed this, we
    understood that we had averted the worst possibilities
    of a great depression. We had gotten the
    economy growing again. We had stabilized
    the financial system. So we had made great strides
    from where we had been in 2008, but we understood even though
    jobs were being created, they were not being
    created fast enough. And I’ve said this before,
    I will say it again, I wake up every single morning
    thinking about how can I make sure that anybody who wants
    a job is able to get a job, and that’s what I think about
    when I go to bed at night. And I am absolutely confident
    about America’s prospects for the 21st century, but we
    do have some challenges, and these challenges predated
    the financial crisis that we had in 2008. If you look at what had
    happened between 2001 and 2008, job growth was slow even when
    the economy was growing at a pretty good clip. So we’ve got a combination
    of factors, as Jeff said, that come into: How
    do we create jobs? I cannot think of a better group
    of people to help us tackle it than those who are
    sitting around the table. A couple of — just points
    that I would make so far. Over the last 15 months we have
    seen over 2 million jobs created. And prior to this month, we had
    seen job growth at a pretty good clip for the previous
    three months, so we had some good reports. This last one showed that
    job creation has not moved as quickly as we’d like. Now, there’s some headwinds
    that all of us are aware of. High gas prices, I think,
    had a depressing affect on consumer confidence. It is something that I think
    was offset to some degree by the payroll tax cut that
    we initiated in December. That’s made a difference in
    helping families to absorb it, but when you’re reminded every
    single day that your costs are going up, that’s going to
    constrain how you think about spending and investment
    and so forth. So that’s been a challenge. Europe is still uncertain, and
    what’s happening with respect to the situation with Greece,
    that’s something that’s created a headwind for some businesses. And I also know that Washington
    getting its act together and making sure that we’ve got a
    credible plan for not simply raising the debt limit but also
    medium and long term deficit reduction is going to be
    something that’s critically important, and we’re spending
    a lot of time focused on. The other thing that we had
    heard in the last meeting was the question of regulation
    and regulatory uncertainty, and I took this
    very much to heart. As I’ve said before, I’m a big
    believer that it’s important for us to have core regulations
    that help protect consumers from being taken advantage of;
    that protect our air and water. I think everybody here around
    this table recognizes that having a smart regulatory
    structure can actually enhance market competitiveness, but it’s
    also important to make sure that these regulations are serving
    a purpose and that the benefits exceed the costs. So what we’ve done is to
    initiate a full scale regulatory review, not just of pending
    regulations but actually looking back for the first time at
    all existing regulations. And I have to tell you, I just
    did an address on this where I was sitting next to a stack of
    federal registers where all the regulations exist, and it
    was a pretty high stack, and it was a reminder that very
    often Washington passes laws but doesn’t do what every business
    around the table does, which is to look back and see,
    did what we do in the past still make sense in the current
    operating environment. Cass Sunstein has been
    leading this process, and we released an initial
    report where we’ve got scores of regulations that we are prepared
    to eliminate because they no longer apply to
    current situations. We think it is going to be able
    to save billions of dollars for businesses, just in terms of
    compliance costs over the next several years, and this is
    an example of how ideas that were generated from this Jobs
    Council we’re going to act on. Sometimes we can do
    it administratively; we don’t neat legislative
    cooperation in order to make it happen. Sometimes we are going to need
    legislation, and where we do, having a group like this
    that can reach a bipartisan consensus and then push
    congress to act, I think, can make an
    extraordinary difference. So, overall, we are feeling
    optimistic about how this council can help drive
    our agenda over the next 12 to 18 months. I want to thank in
    particular Penny, who has been doing some great
    on skills training and how we get community colleges
    linked up with businesses more effectively. We had a terrific event just
    last week with the national association of manufacturers. One of the things that I think
    we’re all aware of is that we’re going to have to up our game
    when it comes to how we train people for the jobs that
    actually exist and design credentialing training programs,
    apprenticeship programs, so that people know if
    they complete this work, they’re prepared to work at
    an Intel or a GE or any of the businesses that are
    represented around this table. A couple of other things that
    I’ll just mention very quickly, I know that one of the things
    that people may be wondering about, at least the press who
    have traveled with me as opposed to the folks who have been
    down here for the last day is, why are we here at Cree? This is an example of the kind
    of company that I think all of us want to see being promoted
    all across the country. This is a company that is
    specializing in LED lighting, has been extraordinarily
    effective in driving down the costs of high efficiency
    lighting that is over time, I think, going to make a
    huge difference not just for businesses who
    use the technology, but also for a country that
    needs to figure out how do we operate in a more
    energy efficient way. They’ve been adding jobs. They have trained their workers. They’ve got a terrific
    relationship with the surrounding community, as well
    as the institutions of higher learning in the area. And so this is a good example
    of entrepreneurship focused on technologies of the future,
    linking up with training American workers for those jobs,
    and my understanding is not only are we focused on
    the domestic market, but we’re also focused on the
    export market and competing internationally, which is going
    to be extraordinarily important. So, in conclusion, let me
    just say how appreciative I am of all of you. As soon as all this press
    clears out of the way, we’re going to be having
    a more open conversation, I think, as I understand Jeff,
    you guys are going to give me some reports in terms of what the
    current environment is out there. As Jeff said, ultimately, job
    growth is going to be driven by the private sector, but we can
    make some smart decisions to encourage businesses to feel
    like this is the right time to invest and that America is
    the right place to invest, and that’s what we want
    to find out from you is, what are you hearing out there,
    what can we do to make sure that we’re boosting job growth, not
    just over the next year but over the next 20 years. All right? Jeffrey Immelt:
    Thanks, Mr. President. Thank you. President Obama:
    Thank you, everybody. Jeffrey Immelt:
    We never had this at
    our meetings, but… (laughter) So we’re going to start
    with just a couple market intelligence updates, and the
    first one we thought it would be great to hear
    from Joe Hansen. Just an update on how
    you see the world, Joe, and kind of from
    the view of labor. Joseph Hansen:
    All right, thank you, Jeff,
    and thank you, Mr. President. I look at the work of this
    council as an effort to look at primarily non-legislative
    approaches to address the plight of the millions of unemployed
    and underemployed workers in this country. And I believe we need to play
    to our country’s strengths. And while this will not be
    as sexy as some of the things you’re going to hear today, one
    of our country’s strengths is agriculture, and it’s
    directly employing over 2 million Americans. And when you add
    related processing, distribution and retail
    jobs, that job number grows to almost 4 million. My union, the UFCW represents
    over 300,000 workers in food manufacturing, mainly in the
    meat and poultry processing. The U.S. meat and poultry
    industry directly employees 1.8 million people and
    pays $45.5 billion in wages and benefits. An estimated 580,000 people have
    jobs in distribution of meat and poultry products, and one in a
    quarter million more retail jobs depend on the sale of meat and
    poultry products to the public. So the meat and poultry industry
    is a growing industry with growing employment. But exports are a significant
    and increasingly important driver of this job growth. For every $1 billion
    in beef exports, over $12,000 are created. For every 1 billion
    in pork exports, over 13,000 jobs are created. And for every 1 billion
    in poultry exports, over 11,000 jobs are created. Industry economists believe that
    a focused governmental effort to address barriers to United
    States meat exports in Asian countries has the potential to
    add thousands and thousands of jobs in the U.S. Secretary Vilsack, and
    Ambassador Kirk have done important work in this area,
    and we have already begun to see results. China has started to recognize
    that it is in their self interest to address their
    domestic food situation by cracking open their
    import door to U.S. meat. As a result, food exports to
    China are growing strongly. Right now, we have additional
    opportunities with Russia. Since Russia is looking to join
    the World Trading Organization, it is important to get their
    commitment to drop their various schemes to block
    U.S. meat imports. I know Ambassador
    Kirk, and his team, are well aware of these issues,
    but I wanted to take this opportunity to stress
    the impact these issues have on U.S. jobs. I also wanted to take this
    opportunity to stress another issue, along with the
    meat export issue, and that’s the importance of
    traditional defined benefit pensions and the economic
    health of this country. Virtually all economists
    agree that the U.S. economy needs to be rebalanced. We need more national
    saving, investment, and new business formation, and we
    need less debt fueled consumption. The continuance of defined
    benefit pension plans needs to be part of that rebalancing. In 2007, public and private
    defined benefit pension plans had nearly $9 trillion in
    assets, and in the aggregate, these plans were
    almost fully funded. Obviously the downturn of the
    financial markets reduced many of the plans funding, but there
    is a consensus among labor and employers that there
    is a need for relief. Not to change the requirement
    for fully funded pensions, but to extend the time frame
    for achieving such funding. Defined benefit plans have made
    significant investments in the infrastructure in support of
    job generation in the U.S. We cannot afford to lose
    this source of funds which help create jobs. I think a well thought out
    program of federal government guarantees and other financial
    incentives directed at pension investors could encourage such
    plans to invest even greater allocations to rebuilding
    America’s infrastructure. We hope that the administration
    and congress can work to achieve these goals. And finally, Mr. President, I
    want to thank you for keeping America’s unemployed
    at the top of your administration’s priorities. I look forward to continuing
    working with the committee to help you to continue to
    create job opportunities for American workers. Thank you. Jeffrey Immelt:
    Great, Joe. Thanks. President Obama:
    Let me just make one,
    two quick comments. First of all, the point Joe
    makes about exports from the agricultural sector, I mean,
    this is an area where we traditionally run a big surplus,
    and we’ve got to continue to build on that surplus. And you’re absolutely right that
    the Korea Free Trade Agreement, Columbia, Panama, the three
    free trade agreements that we’re putting forward, actually
    emphasize opening up these markets when it comes to
    agricultural products, and I think that can make
    a significant difference. So that’s point number one. And with respect to
    Russia, we’re very mindful, and we have at least the
    appearance of getting resolved the issue of poultry
    going into Russia. There’s been some back
    and forth, I know, on some of the details
    of it, but we know that this is something that can
    make a very big difference. Second point you make, you
    know, we’re going to be working closely with congress around the
    whole issue of pensions and a lot of the companies represented
    around this table probably are also concerned about how that
    ends up being resolved and handled, and we know that this
    is something we’re going to have to work with everybody
    on, labor and business, to make sure we get a
    smart resolution to that. Jeffrey Immelt:
    Great. Gary sees millions
    of consumers every day. Gary, what is how
    you’ve seen it? Gary Kelly:
    Well, thanks, Jeff, and
    it’s a pleasure to be here, Mr. President, and thank you so
    much for your leadership during really tough times. What I thought I’d do, Jeff,
    is maybe talk a little bit about the industry and then
    Southwest more specifically, because I think there
    are some differences. I think we all know how
    important transportation is to the economy, how important
    aviation is to the economy. If you look at the domestic air
    travel over the last decade, there are fewer jobs, fewer
    flights, fewer passengers, fewer airplanes. All the way around, the domestic
    airline industry has shrunk. And there are theories
    as to why that is. I think one very clear
    reason is because costs are so much higher. That’s including
    fuel, of course, but also taxes and the
    burden of regulation. There is a different story
    at Southwest Airlines, and I think it helps
    illustrate that point. We’ve actually been able to
    grow Southwest over the past decade by almost double, and
    it’s because we have remarkably lower costs, and we’ve been able
    to offer much lower fares and continue to see a very
    significant shift within the domestic industry away
    from our competition. Current trends are much
    better than they were, but we’re still — we’re
    celebrating our 40th anniversary, by the
    way, on Saturday. This is the slowest growing
    period that we’ve experience in our history, because we’re
    dealing with much higher gas prices, as you
    mentioned, Mr. President. So, the benefit is very
    clear of having lower costs. It’s something that’s passed
    directly through to consumers. Every new market that we
    go into where we are able to lower fares, we see an
    exponential growth in travel. Right now the trends are
    improving with business travel. We’re a lagging indicator
    in the economic cycle. We’re the last to see softness. We’re the last to
    see some improvement. So it is very encouraging to see
    that business travel is returning. The domestic industry overall,
    business travel is still below prerecession levels. At Southwest I think be
    have recovered and are in an expansionary mode right now. The consumer has been
    a bright spot for us, and again it ties in very
    closely with our low fares and our low fare brand. With respect to jobs, we
    are growing this year. We’re growing at
    about a 5% clip. The way our business works,
    it’s a pretty long lead time to put orders in with
    the Boeing Company. We’re an all Boeing airline
    with all GE engines on them, which are the best in
    the world, by the way. (laughter) But orders today would
    probably be delivered in 2013 to offer perspective. I don’t know what gas
    prices will be then. I don’t know what the
    economy will be like. We don’t know what the
    tax burdens will be, the regulatory environment. So we want to grow. We want to buy airplanes, buy
    more engines, create more jobs, but right now we’re just not
    generating sufficient profits in order to make those
    kinds of investments. I think there’s a couple of
    things that we’re recommending to the Jobs Council
    that we focus on. We must have a modernized
    air traffic control system. My best estimate is that
    it costs us 15% in terms of additional fuel consumption,
    which is obviously not climate friendly either. We do not fly our airplanes
    as the crow flies. We route them according to
    1930’s weigh points that are established on the ground with
    ground based radar systems. So it is horribly out of
    date and very expensive to continue to maintain. The other thing, of course,
    is the continued development of alternative fuels. There’s a lot of focus on that. Unfortunately, I think, it’s
    going to be many years away before they’re commercially
    viable to have a real impact, but it’s something that I think
    we must continue to invest in. Something that’s, I think,
    closer is the continued development of
    aerospace technology. GE has a new engine that
    Jeff can certainly speak to, but we’re hoping that it becomes
    commercially available over the next several years. It alone could reduce
    fuel consumption by 15%, plus or minus. So we’re looking at the Boeing
    Company to make commitments to this next generation airplane,
    take advantage of new generation engines and, but that too
    could be many years away before we see that. In the meantime, we’re hopeful
    that we’ll continue to see supportive policies so that
    there are additional regulatory and tax burdens, like a
    carbon tax, for example. The best way for us to
    participate in climate is to seek a new air traffic
    control system that’s more fuel efficient, as well as new
    aviation technology that would be more fuel efficient. President Obama:
    Gary, let me just ask you. First of all, I hope everybody,
    because I know that it’s being live streamed, and also we’ve
    got some press back there, I just want to emphasize
    what Gary just said. 15% potential fuel savings in
    the industry as a whole if we just got a more efficient air
    traffic control system in place. So this is an example of the
    kind of smart investment where we will recoup our money as
    consumers and as taxpayers, but we’ve got to get started,
    because we’ve been talking about this now for — Gary Kelly:
    Thirty years. President Obama:
    — 30 years. We have an outdated system, and
    it is causing not only you guys to pay more for gas, for
    fuel, but it also is a huge contributor to the
    delays that make people irritated at airports. I mean, I understand TSA may
    have something to do with it, as well. So this is an example
    of a smart investment, and as we are moving forward,
    knowing we’ve got to reduce our deficit, knowing we’ve got
    to get a handle on our debt, distinguishing between
    smart investments and dumb investments, smart
    spending and bad spending, is absolutely critical, and a
    lot of times that is not how these things are couched
    in the public debates. So I just wanted
    to highlight that. With respect to — you mentioned
    carbon tax specifically. Gary, are there other things on
    the regulatory side or on the tax side that stand out or is
    it just generally, you know, businesses get frustrated
    with taxes and regulation? Gary Kelly:
    Well, first of all, we certainly
    applaud your leadership to not only scrutinize new regulations
    but to look at the regulations that we have on the books. We do chuckle in the airlines,
    because we were supposedly deregulated in 1978, but
    I don’t think that that’s really been the case. So it’s — I would say the
    things to look at would be regulatory burdens that truly
    don’t add to safety or to the customer experience, and
    there are a host of those that we could recommend. And we have new regulatory
    burdens coming online now that are requiring, as
    a very quick example, us to completely rewire
    our systems as to how we display airfares. And in this particular case,
    it’s inconsistent with the way virtually every other product or
    service is advertised or sold, and it just, it causes one to
    ask, well, what is the purpose? President Obama:
    So presumably the rationale
    is making sure increased transparency for consumers in
    terms of what they’re paying? Gary Kelly:
    Yes, sir. President Obama:
    What we’ll do is we’ll
    follow up with Ray LaHood, and let’s find out, let’s
    take a look at that list and see what makes sense. Jeffrey Immelt:
    Good. Let’s get an update
    on small business. Monica? Monica Lozano:
    Sure, thank you, Jeff. And Mr. President,
    it’s great to be here, and I would say that for
    the first time in the past few years, we are seeing real
    optimism in the small business sector, and it’s demonstrated
    tangibly in two very direct ways: One, in small
    business formation. Small business formation
    is actually up. And of course we lost almost
    150,000 businesses themselves, small businesses,
    between 2007 and 2009. 2010, for the very first time,
    we actually saw small business growth, and that’s important
    because these are small entrepreneurs that are putting
    themselves on the line, their families’
    income on the line, and they’re actually seeing
    this vital segment of the economy coming back into play. So, small business
    formation is up. More importantly, I think,
    is the optimism that you see amongst small
    business entrepreneurs. Every indicator shows
    that people feel much more optimistic,
    they’re enthusiastic, they see signs of recovery,
    they’re looking at this year and the next 12 months as
    years of tremendous growth. And so those two
    factors combined, small business for making with
    a sense of great optimism, I think, for the first time is
    really fueling a sense that we have come out of the dip, and
    I would say that businesses are now much more confident that
    they’re going to grow and are compelled to invest
    in that growth. And I would just say,
    excuse me, as an operator, as an owner of a medium-sized
    consumer facing company, we see it in a number
    of the indicators that we track ourselves. So our advertiser base is
    comprised of close to 10,000 small businesses located
    typically in urban environments. What we’re seeing 2009 to 2010,
    we saw a 12% decline in small business, in small businesses,
    the number of advertisers that we had during that
    one period of years. What we’re seeing in 2011 is not
    just a recovery where we have actually seen growth, but this
    is the area that are actually stimulating the greatest
    revenue growth for us. So these are small
    businesses that are operating on the ground. Mom and pops transportation,
    hospitality, retailers, the fact that they’re back
    in the market advertising and marketing themselves also
    demonstrates to me that they’re ready to get back in business
    and are actually prepared to act on that optimism that we saw. Of course you
    mentioned gas prices, concern around
    consumer confidence, but at least for now
    we’re seeing, as I said, business formation and
    optimism around this sector. But demand for investment by
    small businesses, you know, you’ve been out of the
    market, you’ve retrenched, you’ve restructured,
    you’ve downsized, it’s time to grow again,
    and people want to act on that optimism and get
    back in, and unfortunately, we’re still seeing a climate
    where capital is just not available to small businesses. This is probably the
    number one concern. So you see, all of
    this enthusiasm, and yet only about half of all
    small businesses say that they have the necessary financial
    resources to successfully execute on their plans. Loan demand is up, but
    unfortunately banks have denied almost 60% of
    all loan applications, and of course we understand why. They take a look
    back, your cash flows, your top line revenue growth,
    and because these past few years have been so difficult,
    we’re seeing, as I said, almost 60% of all bank
    loans to small businesses had been denied. Angel investors are
    back in the market, but they’ve only backed about 4%
    of all the business plans that they see, and venture capital
    and private equity is only funding about 1% of all the
    business plans that they see. And of course the head
    of the SBA is with us, and they’ve just revealed
    that bank loans outstanding to small businesses actually
    declined in this last year. So this is the counterpart. You’ve got great optimism. You’re got interest in
    growth and investment. People want to invest in
    technology, new product designs, new marketing strategies, and
    access to capital continues to be the greatest concern. Having said that, I would
    also say that the focus by this council on the small
    business sector is actually very gratifying, and as opposed
    to having a stand-alone set of initiatives around
    small business, the leadership of the council
    and all of the workgroups are actually looking at very
    specific ways in which we compare large companies
    with small companies. We’re developing a mentoring
    program focused on exports, because we know that actually
    small businesses are the greatest number of exporting
    and producing businesses in the country, and then
    certainly evaluating the regulatory burdens. So I would say overall
    for the first time, and I as a small business owner,
    medium-size business owner, feeling very optimistic
    about the prospects, want to get back into business
    and want to grow our businesses, still lots of concern
    about access to capital, and I think the work
    that we’re doing here about removing barriers,
    eliminating regulations, focusing on exports
    and high growth, we’ll be able to see
    real success, I think, in the next 12 months. President Obama:
    With respect to capital, we have
    had sort of an ongoing series of conversations among cabinet
    members and those who are on the economic side of our work,
    looking at what the continuing barriers to getting capital
    are for small businesses. Obviously, Karen has been
    leading the charge on this. Part of what makes this a
    challenge is we’ve got a lot of independent regulatory agencies
    with oversight in the banks, and, you know, having a
    conversation with them that doesn’t tip over the line and
    encroach on their independence but, you know, those who are
    in the financial sector and the banking sectors, you know, I’ll
    be interested in hearing from you guys what you’re saying. A lot of small businesses rely
    on smaller banks to access their capital, and I think community
    banks I’ve been getting a lot of reports are still
    having trouble, partly because they were
    overinvested in real estate that is still very weak, but part of
    it may be that there’s been an overcompensation when
    there was over-exuberance pre-financial crisis. Now people have pulled back
    and haven’t been willing to loosen up enough to capture
    the enthusiasm that you’re talking about. Monica Lozano:
    Yeah, and I would just
    say, banks are lending. So you see greater commercial
    loans, you see industrial loans. What you’re not seeing is
    small business lending, and certainly the SBA
    back loans are there. Small businesses can’t
    access the capital market, so this continues to be
    the most important issue. President Obama:
    Right. Monica Lozano:
    Thank you. Jeffrey Immelt:
    This is the place we’re going
    to stay focused in terms of where the council goes
    in the next 90 days, because we hear it
    consistently enough. President Obama:
    Good. Jeffrey Immelt:
    Maybe, Roger, you wrap up us
    with a look at the markets? Roger Ferguson:
    Sure. Obviously the markets are
    reflecting exactly what you only understand, which is that
    the economy continues to grow but there’s some
    volatility for sure. And I would say the markets are
    also clearly focused in not just domestically but
    internationally, because there are international
    capital markets these days. So the earlier point you made
    about uncertainty around Europe is actually playing through the
    markets for sure, no question. I would also say the markets are
    waiting for something that is going on in Washington, which
    is to understand how the debt and deficit talks unfold. At this stage I would say
    things are relatively quiescent, but obviously as we get closer
    to that August 2nd date that the Secretary of the Treasury
    has put out there, markets are going to become
    much more focused in, and my expectation is that
    they’ll have to be a lot of activity much before that
    point, as you well understand, because of the limited
    amount of time that Congress is in session. So at this stage I would say
    markets are, roughly speaking, supportive of growth. They’re reflective of the ups
    and downs and volatility and always being forward looking. Two big questions: How things
    unfold in the global economy and how things unfold
    here domestically. If I could add one other
    thing, because, as you know, I represent or work with
    a number of individuals and their savings, and
    we’re clearly seeing, as I said to you the last time
    in our phone calls and others, folks at the lower end of the
    spectrum are still looking to tap into the savings in
    various different ways. Those who have jobs are feeling
    moderately more confident if I can sort of impute some
    psychological outcomes to some of the calls
    that we are getting. So it’s a very interesting,
    ongoing dynamic in the U.S. economy. President Obama:
    Well, the point about
    deficit and debt and how this gets resolved relative
    to debt limit, obviously, is going to be consuming
    over the next several weeks. The thing I want to emphasize is
    that we need to solve our medium and long-term debt and deficit
    problems not for abstract reasons but because they
    are a concrete impediment to growth and jobs. So, you know, the American
    people need to know that over the next month as we focus
    on making sure that we have a balanced, thoughtful
    resolution to this problem, this isn’t to the exclusion
    of worrying about jobs but is actually in service of making
    sure that businesses have enough confidence about the investment
    environment that they can start getting off the sidelines and
    putting more money to work, and hiring more people,
    and building more plants, and building more equipment. One thing that I do think is
    important is making sure that we are keeping our eye on the
    need to accelerate the recovery as part of the overall
    package that we agreed to. You know, I’ve long believed
    that coming out of as bad of a recession as we’ve been in that
    it’s important for us to focus on, what are the real drivers of
    our debt and deficit problems, and that’s not, you know,
    the day-to-day spending. It’s the structural problems
    that we have between sending too much money out and not
    bringing enough money in. And the steps that we take don’t
    have to create a sudden drastic cliff in 2012 or 2013 while the
    economy is still recovering. We’ve got a 10 year time horizon
    and a 20 year time horizon that we can operate off of, and I
    think that can — that gives us a little bit of room to continue
    to do some smart things like the payroll tax cut that we
    initiated in December, while still keeping our eye
    on the ball in terms of the long term, so. Jeffrey Immelt:
    We’re going to shift gears now. President Obama:
    Let’s do that. Jeffrey Immelt:
    Talk about the jobs plan and
    some of the activities of the council, and maybe Ken is going
    to start it off just to give you an over the top sense of jobs
    plan that we’re putting together as a council. Kenneth Chenault:
    Good. Thank you, Mr. President,
    for your sense of focus and urgency on job creation. And we also know that this goal
    has to be integrated with the overall objective of
    growing our economy. So the assignment for this
    working group has been to produce a jobs plan and really
    a framework for all the work across the Jobs Council, and
    I think we have had excellent collaboration across
    the council on this. We obviously want to bring
    a sense of urgency to this challenge, but we want to
    do it in a way that’s both focused and comprehensive. So what I thought I would
    do is just go through some of the principles we’re
    following on the council. The first is we want to look at
    everything through the lens of job creation. We want to look at every
    proposal we consider through the lens of job creation. If we do this, what will the
    impact be on job creation? How quickly will
    it have an impact? What are the actions or
    resources necessary to implement the proposal? And as a result, we’ve done
    a bottoms up analysis and attempted to quantify the job
    creation opportunities by sector and industry and identify
    the job growth potential of each proposal. Second, we’ve got to take
    a comprehensive approach. And we’re not focused
    exclusively on any particular sector or income
    group or geographic region. Instead, we want to move down
    a number of tracks at the same time exploring multiple
    proposals for potential job creation. And we looked at this
    potential in different ways across multiple axes. For example, across individual
    sectors and industries of the economy, what is the
    potential for job creation, and what are the problems
    facing different sectors of the economy? We also looked across different
    regions of the country. What are the areas that have
    the highest unemployment and what skills are needed for
    the jobs of the future? And third, we wanted to consider
    the needs and opportunities across different income segments. We really want to create jobs
    across all income levels. Finally, and we think
    this is very important; we want to focus on outcomes. This is really core. One million jobs
    within two years. And we believe we need a
    relentless focus on execution. Now, as we put
    together the jobs plan, we begin by focusing on
    high-priority segments with the potential for
    immediate job growth. And what we wanted to do
    was define what I would call low-hanging fruit areas where
    the private sector or the executive branch or both could
    accelerate short-term job creation without the need for
    major legislation from Congress or actions that would
    require a long runway. Now, you’re going to hear some
    of these ideas today from my colleagues on the council,
    but you’ll also hear ideas that impact the moderate to
    long-term job creation as well. However, given the
    sense of urgency, we wanted to have a
    significant short-term goal, so we assembled a list
    of proposals that could create one million jobs
    over the next two years. And we believe by taking a
    series of actions across one million jobs that it could end
    up being, as I would call it, a significant down
    payment on job creation over a longer horizon. So let me just give
    you two examples. Travel and tourism is a
    growing sector globally, but the United States is
    losing market share and has been for years. We believe that the executive
    branch in business must accelerate a range of
    initiatives from speeding the process of getting a visa to
    strengthening promotion programs in order to once again make
    the United States a leading destination for the
    international traveler. This will position the
    travel industry for further growth and create hundreds of
    thousands of jobs in the U.S. There are also other
    important examples, some of which you’ll
    hear about today, where the private sector can
    take the initiative without any action by the
    federal government, especially in the
    area of training. And Penny Pritzker and her
    team have been working on that, working with colleges and
    various vocational schools. Employers around this table
    are moving ahead on a range of programs that will train
    more workers who can fill jobs in manufacturing and
    create a new generation of healthcare professionals. Now, this will not only equip
    our workers for today’s jobs. It will strengthen and
    make us more competitive in the global marketplace. I think as Jeff said, there
    is not one silver bullet to accomplish this
    job creation goal. Many actions are required
    in the coming months, and we will continue to look
    at a broad range of ideas, some of which we hope
    will be big ideas. I think that we’re approaching
    the challenge of job creation across multiple timeframes. And we recognize that our report
    today is only a beginning. The approach we’re taking
    is to focus on the short, the moderate, and the long-term,
    as we believe this is the best way to create jobs
    in a sustainable way. Ultimately, we believe we must
    take fundamental steps to build and ensure that this country is
    more competitive in the global marketplace and that we have
    a long-term strategy for sustainable job creation
    in the United States. Jeff Immelt:
    So, so far, we’ve got
    probably 30 ideas the council is working on. Ken, and some of the
    rest of the team, is presenting it at places
    like the Business Roundtable, NAM, places like that. So we’re reaching out to all
    of our business colleagues to get everybody in the game. And that’s the way, I think the
    only way we can approach this, is step by step, multiple
    ideas across multiple segments. And we’re going to leave
    behind a full out jobs plan. So a couple of the ideas
    — Steve is going to kick off and talk about really one of
    the financing streams and how it can work for small business. Steve Case:
    Jeff, about a month ago,
    decided to create a new committee of this group
    called Focus on High Growth Entrepreneurship. And the reason it’s so important
    is while small business really is the foundation on
    which we built America, it’s these high growth companies
    that create all the jobs. The Kauffman Foundation
    research suggests 40 million jobs have been created over
    the last 25 years from high-growth companies. And they account for
    all the net job growth. So if we want to get
    this nation moving, want to get unemployment down,
    want to get the economy moving, want to ensure national
    competitiveness, getting entrepreneurship
    right is critical. It really is the secret
    sauce that’s built America. Companies like GM or IBM
    — it’s now celebrating its 100th anniversary — are
    really started by entrepreneurs. This is a nation built
    by entrepreneurs. And cities like Durham were
    built by entrepreneurs. We really got to get it right. Unfortunately, we
    had some challenges. I work up this morning
    and read the USA Today. On the front page, it
    says weakest start up since the early 1990’s. So there’s work to be done to
    get this back on track with your leadership and
    Jeff’s leadership. There’s four particular
    initiatives I wanted to give you a quick update on. The first is this new committee
    of the Jobs Council is working on a roadmap for
    entrepreneurship. We’re working with McKinsey. And we’ve talked to dozens of
    groups and assembled all the best ideas from inside the
    administration of Congress, from business groups,
    from other groups, trying to gather
    them all together, run some analytics against
    them in terms of where the real leverage is, and come back at
    the next meeting with really a roadmap, a specific prescription
    to get this moving again and help to build bipartisan
    support for a plan that would be 6, 7, 8 items. That’s number one. The second, tomorrow, under the
    leadership of Secretary Locke, the National Advisory Council on
    Innovation and Entrepreneurship is meeting. And they will be discussing a
    report with eight items that focus on access to capital,
    some early-stage capital, some late-stage capital. I think some important work
    has been done with that group. The third, the Startup America
    initiative that you helped us launch about four months ago
    is off to a good start with corporate commitments to give
    entrepreneurs great resources as well as focusing on building
    up regional ecosystems. You’ll be pleased to know. I still think you should think
    about Hawaii as your home. We did launch Startup
    Illinois a few weeks ago, and there are many of these
    other regional efforts that are being developed. And finally, as part
    of the jobs plan, with the leadership of
    Karen Mills at the SBA, over the last three months,
    there have been eight roundtables, Reducing
    Barriers Roundtables, all around the country. Two hundred thirty different
    suggestions were made in terms of streamlining access to SBA
    resources, loans, and so forth. So we’re working with the SBA
    to try to put a specific plan in place to essentially get
    people access to these resources that already exist but they
    don’t necessarily know how to navigate through a complicated
    system to do that. So the combination of this
    jobs plan, I think really, the roadmap for
    entrepreneurship, the access to capital work
    NASI’s [phonetic] done, the early efforts of Startup
    America which seem to be building some momentum, and
    looking at ways to streamline the SBA, I think we can
    get this back on track, as Jeff said and Ken and others. There’s no quick fixes here. It’s going to take a lot of work
    over a sustained period of time. But I think focusing on
    entrepreneurs and celebrating them as American heroes and
    looking at ways to reduce barriers and to really get more
    people to start up companies, more people to
    ramp up companies, in particular unleashing these
    high-growth speed ups is very important for the nation. And we appreciate
    your leadership. Jeff Immelt:
    Penny has an update on getting
    construction workers back to work. Penny Pritzker:
    Thank you, Jeff. Mr. President, in February, you
    asked the council to help lead the Better Buildings Initiative. And the Better Buildings
    Initiative’s goal is to save American businesses $40
    billion a year on energy bills by employing new technologies
    and adopting energy renovations in America’s buildings. So we support this effort, not
    only because of its role in reducing our energy independence
    but also because this initiative is estimated to create
    $114,000 new jobs over the next two years. That figure comes from an
    independent study by the Political Economy Research
    Institute of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. And the BBI job creation
    can begin today. In addition to new jobs, BBI and
    the council are promoting steps that will support the market
    with better information and less paperwork. And it can affect what
    a building is worth. Energy performance is often
    not a factor in real estate appraisals today because of
    lack of information, awareness, and transparency. So today that’s changing. The Department of Energy and
    the Appraisal Foundation are launching a collaboration
    to educate appraisers. This effort will make sure that
    appraisers across the country have the required information
    and guidelines to make energy performance a recognized
    part of appraisals. We’re also proposing to make the
    existing business tax deduction for energy efficiency
    work better. Businesses today have told us
    that it costs more to document the current deduction
    than it’s worth. And so today, the Department
    of Energy launched a new online tool that makes it simpler
    to use the deduction without compromising quality. So the right incentives
    in an efficient market will make American business more
    efficient and more competitive. Next, the community colleges are
    going to help meet the need for building industry professionals
    who can support clean energy technologies and renovations. On October 15, the National
    Institute of Standards And Technology, working with
    the Department of Energy, will announce $1.5 million in
    competitive grants for community colleges to train workers. And this will fulfill your
    commitment to launch a new commercial building technology
    extension partnership. So we’re building momentum in
    the Better Buildings Initiative. We want to realize the full
    promise of the 114,000 new jobs. And lastly, we’re working with
    former President Bill Clinton on the Better Building Challenge,
    which is an effort to build public/private partnerships
    to create private sector energy leadership. The Better Buildings Challenge
    is where building owners will commit to upgrade the energy
    performance on all types of buildings; whether it be office
    buildings, schools, hospitals, this effort cannot only
    cut cost over time, but also create jobs today. So we have a lot of
    momentum behind this. The Administration, in
    various departments, has done really terrific
    work and we’re very excited about this. President Obama:
    I think the potential
    on this is enormous. And it’s something I’ve been
    discussing with my team, trying to figure out how to
    structure all these various components over the
    last couple of years. We know that this is our
    low-hanging fruit when it comes to energy efficiency,
    environmental quality, climate change, job creation. And the question is,
    just how do we get all the pieces fitting together? Penny helped educate
    me on, for example, even if a building owner knows
    that they’re going to get their money back for making
    these investments, if you’ve got complications
    between the lessor and the lessee, then the person who’s
    initially putting in Cree lights may not recoup their money. And so as a consequence,
    their attitude is, well, we’ll put the low efficiency
    lighting in initially and we’ll let whoever comes in after
    us change the lighting if they want. But of course the problem
    is, potentially LED lighting, for example, could
    last for ten years. So if you could figure out a way
    to build that in from the start, then everybody wins. But the incentives right now are
    skewed across various aspects of the real estate market. And so the work that’s
    being done on this, I think, has enormous potential
    for job creation, even as it helps us become
    more energy efficient. I’m very exciting about it. Jeff Immelt:
    It’s low-hanging fruit, it
    could be privately financed. We’ll stick on it
    to get it done. Penny Pritzker:
    And there’s enormous enthusiasm
    in the building owners. Jeff Immelt:
    So next is Matt. Matt has been working on
    regulatory — streamlining permanent cycle time and all
    the things that are near and dear to big and small business. Matthew Rose:
    Mr. President, two of
    the six focus areas, regulatory and infrastructure,
    have a common intersection. And that’s around
    project permitting. Over the past 60 days, we’ve
    held numerous listening sessions with people from the
    business community, the environmental community,
    and a number of others as well. I want to share with you some of
    the thoughts that we’ve come up with thus far around some
    recommendations as well. My railroad, BNSF,
    announced this year record capital spending. And a large part of
    that capital will go to building new projects. And some of it will go
    to buy new locomotives. But let’s just stay on the
    building stuff to begin with. We see firsthand what happens
    when you try and permit a project in this country. And it can delay things
    from months to years. And in many cases it can cause
    the project to be abandoned. I’m sure that when you
    implemented the Recovery Act, your staff briefed you on
    many of the challenges of the permitting process
    and the impact on putting Americans back to work. And that’s exactly what
    we see in the American business as well. President Obama:
    Shovel ready was not as
    shovel ready as we expected. Matthew Rose:
    So many others have found
    the place that we’re in today and have tried to
    do things over the years. Specific legislation was passed
    in the next highway bill that really went quite far
    to help this process. Specific states: the state of
    Minnesota has passed a specific law to help the
    permitting process, in this case permitting
    a new steel factory, a new steel plant. We’ve heard testimony from
    experts who have been studying this among other developed
    countries, not just China. We always hear the story: Oh,
    China can do this in 60 days. This is benchmarking
    among developed countries. And there’s some very
    constructive best practices that our country can learn from,
    from countries such as Australia and our neighbors
    to the north, Canada. And we want to
    understand those better, and we will be doing that. Let me assure you from
    the outset though, this is not at all about
    eliminating the review process. It’s really about
    speeding up the process. And we think it can have
    significant impact to jobs. I’ve got five recommendations,
    but before I start with those five, let me just
    spend a minute on NEPA, because you hear
    a lot about NEPA. And all of us who are involved
    in the building trades understand that NEPA
    really, in my opinion, needs to be reformed. It’s a process statute,
    not a decision statute. And in essence, what’s
    happening is that projects get pocket vetoed through delay. You’ll hear that only
    about 3% of the projects face the full EIS. But that comprises about
    70% of the dollar value of the federal projects. And those EISs can take
    three to five years. And AASHTO tells us
    that a project can take, from planning to
    implementation, 10 to 15 years. Now, again, I know
    that we’re not China, but I think we can
    do better than that. So we’ve got five areas
    of focus that I would like to recommend to you. First, we don’t, as a country,
    even know how many projects are in the federal pipelines,
    much less where they sit. And we would like to ask you to
    require all agencies to collect and consolidate the permitting
    data from all the federal agencies and make that
    information transparent and available. Federal agencies should ensure
    that reviews are completed in a timely manner and that the
    public has visibility in the progress of a permit. Right now, that is
    just unknown totally. Secondly, there are high
    priority projects that can have a significant
    impact to job creation. And those projects ought
    to be given top priority for those review. Third, we need accountability
    for job creating projects, which means monitoring and
    controls by somebody whose entire mission it is
    economic development. This means empowering executive
    offices not only to coordinate but if necessary to make
    the final decisions under the deadlines that
    the administration sets for decision. In essence, we want the White
    House to play the role of quarterback where necessary. There’s a couple other
    challenges that you’re going to need a little bit of help
    from your friends in Congress, but these are really important. First — or fourth issue is
    really that many state processes can be at least as stringent
    as the federal processes. And those should be allowed to
    satisfy the federal processes. Projects should not be subject
    to duplicate state and federal reviews where states are in a
    better position to consider the project and are committed
    to devoting the resources. And then fifth, finally, permit
    litigation is one of the biggest levers against
    project construction. State holders should certainly
    have their day in court, but the opportunity to challenge
    projects must be shortened. I clearly get that the
    politics of all this is very, very difficult. But I also know that you have
    a desire to improve both the environment as well as your
    commitment to economic growth. And I think that you’re
    uniquely situated to bridge these two issues. I really do believe that — and
    I think if you ask everybody in this room, if we adopted
    these five recommendations, that you would see a significant
    impact to job creation, American competitiveness, and
    something else you speak about a lot; it’s just good government. That’s it. President Obama:
    Well, look. I think that’s
    a terrific presentation. Let me just make a comment. Maybe this was in some briefing
    materials that you guys have prepared, or maybe I just
    read it somewhere else. I think we’ve been rated 27th
    at this point in the speed of actually being able to
    construct something. Now, that’s not very good. And as you point out, I think
    there’s a way for us to maintain our environmental standards,
    make sure that communities that are being affected by
    construction have a voice, but not just add layer upon
    layer of bureaucracy that is slowing projects up. Now, somebody told me — I think
    it may have been Steve Jobs at Microsoft where, in China, you
    could start building the factory and they would allow people to
    start working in it while the upper floors were still
    being constructed. We’re probably not
    going to do that, but I think that the
    recommendations that you put out are ones that we
    should take very seriously. One of the bigger
    challenges, obviously, has to do with coordination
    between various state, local, and federal jurisdictions. That’s actually the thing that
    I’m most concerned about because it’s not something that I
    have direct control over. If there’s construction
    involving a federal project on federal lands, then
    potentially, we can cut through red tape to
    make decisions quickly. But the Smart Grid
    is a classic example. At the beginning of this
    recession, when I first came in, one of the projects we wanted to
    move rapidly on was the issue of Smart Grid. And I was rapidly informed that
    the problem wasn’t actually capital, that we could actually
    get private financing for most of the Smart Grid, the problem
    was this patchwork of local jurisdictions and NIMBY, and you
    know all the typical problems in terms of siting. So one of the questions
    — you offered in your list one solution, which is
    federal deferral to states in some circumstances. That may, in some
    circumstances, be appropriate. But my instinct is what we’re
    going to have to figure out is can we get a
    state/federal/local agreement, almost like the unified
    commercial code or something, where everybody buys into a
    particular model approach, a particular standard that a
    lot of different states apply, that the federal government
    applies so that people aren’t having to guess how to
    approach these problems, depending on which
    jurisdiction they’re in. But I’m very excited about this. We’re going to get on it. Jeff Immelt:
    Lots of jobs here.
    Paul’s got an update. Paul is leading the team to get
    us more engineers in the country every year, which is an
    important aspect as well. Paul Otellini:
    Thank you, Jeff. Mr. President, our committee
    is looking at the significantly increasing availability
    of qualified engineers and technicians in the workforce. The reason for this
    is self evident. Obviously for a knowledge
    based economy and an innovative economy, you need these people. But also near term, there are
    five times as many openings as there are qualified
    people in this country. So this is a near-term way
    to really start filling the job pipeline. Longer term, if we
    don’t solve this, those jobs aren’t
    going to be here. We all understand that. So in going through this,
    our committee came up with three focus areas. And I’ll talk about
    the first two, and Darlene will
    talk about the third. The first one is on immigration. And I think you are well aware
    that if you look at the graduate degree programs in the United
    States Masters and PhDs in STEM, about 50% of those people
    are not U.S. born citizens and they don’t have the right
    to work here when they graduate. In fact, at Columbia School that
    I think you’re familiar with, the graduating class this year
    was 85% were foreign born, of the PhD in engineering. So we came up with a couple
    of ideas in this area that are focused on short term
    and long-term deliverables. Short term, the criteria was
    what can the Administration do through regulation or just
    changes in administrative policies without Congress? And we’ve submitted a dozen
    ideas to the White House staff in this area. They have to do with early
    filing of Green Cards, Premium Processing, regenerating
    the National Interest Waiver, those kinds of things. And I think there seems to be
    very good receptivity to this. And I saw some of them showed up
    in your speech in the southwest when you made that. In the long-term, of course,
    Congress has to pass some legislation here. We’re buoyed by the fact that
    Jeff Lake has a nice bill on stapling a Green Card
    to every PhD in STEM. Zoe Lofgren is working on
    increasing the total number. And Lamar Smith is focusing on
    changing the per country limit so that we can allow for the
    importation or accreditation of mostly Chinese and Indian
    engineers as opposed to waiting for the rare finish engineer
    that wants to work here. And those all look very good. The impact on jobs is big. Every one of these people we can
    bring into the workforce because of their skill set, their
    ability to create companies, create patents and so forth,
    generates five jobs around them. So for every one of
    these, we get five. This is a big deal. That was immigration. Any comments on that? President Obama:
    I’m with you. (laughter) But I want to emphasize
    the point you made because sometimes this gets posed
    as immigrants taking jobs. If we have an immigrant engineer
    who’s coming here and starting a company that’s creating jobs,
    if we have an immigrant engineer that is providing a skill
    that is in short supply and, as a consequence, the business
    decides to locate here as opposed to in India or in
    China, that’s creating jobs. So obviously, my
    biggest priority, which I’m assuming is going
    to be next on the list, is making sure that all our
    kids start studying engineering because there’s nothing — we
    used to have the best engineers and the most engineers. And there’s nothing inherent
    in our kids’ studying Math and Science and getting advanced
    degrees in engineering. So the whole STEM education
    agenda is one that we’ve really got to ramp up. And so I don’t want
    to steal your thunder. I’m assuming you’re
    going to talk about that. Paul Otellini:
    That’s next year. Perfect segue. President Obama:
    That’s my goal. Paul Otellini:
    So as you’re aware, only 14% of
    our undergraduates are enrolled in STEM programs. Worst than that
    though, of the 14%, 40% drop out in the
    first year, and 60% in the underrepresented groups. So these are kids that got
    the jazz in high school, were qualified to get into
    engineering degrees or STEM Programs, and we lose 40%
    of them in the first year. So we decided to look at why. And it turns out there’s a
    number of schools in this country that have a very
    good retention rate. Michigan for example retains 98%
    of the freshmen that start in engineering and
    get them a degree. President Obama:
    Why is that? Paul Otellini:
    They have a program that
    looks at a number of things. They have high-touch mentorship. They have an internship
    program, and they have a jobs reach out program. So we’re going to steal that. We’re quick to steal
    that and expand it. We’re recruiting a number of
    schools that have similar kinds of problems but not the
    solution that Michigan does. And this is mostly
    private sector focused. We do have one action item
    we’re going to ask you about, but we want to have direct
    engineering engagement, the mentorship program. We want companies
    around the table, and generally in Technology, to
    commit to first and second year internship so that people
    can see how exciting hands-on engineering is, and then third,
    somehow recognize the schools that do this, through some kind
    of schools of distinction or technical seal of excellence
    program where we recognize schools that get their
    graduation rates up in these programs with some kind of
    presidential recognition or maybe something at the White
    House at some point in time. This will take some money. We can do it with private money. The corporations that we’ve
    talked to are willing to chip in and commit to
    internships, to jobs, and maybe even some seed
    money to feed the high-touch mentorship that has to
    happen in the first year. And our goal is — there’s
    120,000 graduates per year in engineering today. We think we can lift that by
    10,000 a year per year over the next several years. That’s not enough. We have a 5x deficit. So we have to more than triple
    the number of graduates over the next ten years to come
    anywhere close to doing this, even if we fix immigration. President Obama:
    My working assumption though,
    Paul, is that if we can get the snowball rolling, then it
    can build exponentially. Now, part of this is going to
    be changing our culture and me using the bully-pulpit to talk
    about why this is so important. The number of young people who,
    during the 90’s and the last decade, went into high finance
    who could have profitably gone into engineering is in part
    because that was what was focused on. That was what was considered
    sexy as an occupation. And you know, I want that whole
    pocket protector to be sort of the new sex appeal. And we’ve seen
    this happen before. I mean, this is what
    the space program did. A whole generation of young
    people got attached to the idea of making stuff and
    creating new technologies. It was the most
    noble of endeavors, and we’ve got to
    get back to that. So all the ideas that
    you’re talking about, we want to fully support,
    figuring out how we can build a movement behind this. I think it would be
    really important, making this as
    high-profile as possible. Paul Otellini:
    Great. And then the third one
    Darlene is going to talk about, which is advanced manufacturing. Darlene Miller:
    Good afternoon, Mr. President. First of all, I would like to
    really applaud you on your new initiatives for the
    Skills for America, especially the industry
    recognized credentials. I think that’s going to be
    really successful in helping develop the manufacturing sector
    which really ties in nicely to what I think is a good solution
    is a pilot program to expand advanced manufacturing workforce. The problem as I see it
    today is U.S. manufacturers are encountering difficulties
    hiring technicians, skilled trade workers,
    IT, and individuals with significant technical training
    to work in these advanced manufacturing positions. Pulling currently indicates
    14-52% of prospective employers, particularly small businesses,
    are really concerned about the lack of skilled job candidates
    to fill this specialized manufacturing slot that
    require a degree of training. And small businesses really have
    no incentive to risk bringing on people that don’t come in as
    value-added or to put their high-tech manufacturing
    equipment into the hands of unskilled people. Small businesses is, as we know,
    are the countries’ engine room for job growth. Thirty million small
    businesses account for 64% of the net new jobs. And small businesses created 70%
    of the jobs in the last ten years. So a solution, we urged the
    creation of a nationwide jobs training pilot program geared
    toward advanced manufacturing. And this proposal would include
    two 8-week training sessions with a private/public
    partnership involving companies that seek employees
    with these skills and knowledge. Skills that include:
    computer, numeric controls, foundations of technical math,
    computer aided machining and design, CNC machining, and
    manufacturing processes, and other similar aptitudes. The key to this program is
    that the employers would help coordinate the actual programs
    so that it would be fitting for the jobs that are
    currently out there. Half-way through
    this course work, we would have these students
    intern at our respective companies in
    available positions. The fabricated metal industry is
    an industry sector composed of 60,000 establishments, which
    includes 2600 companies in the high-tech precision
    machining arena, of which the Precision Machine
    Products Association is a part of and would be the
    targeted employers. The Dunwoody College of
    Technology is a non-profit technical institute of higher
    learning that is preparing a course of study for this pilot. This college has the equipment,
    which is very expensive capital equipment, to help
    train these people. And that is what we have
    found has been a real issue, the cost of capital equipment
    at a lot of schools prevent the real training
    that we really need. The pilot concept would need
    to be spread to other colleges, since Dunwoody is only one of
    three nationwide private schools that actually have
    advanced manufacturing skills for workers. Over the longer term, we would
    urge consideration of training of advanced manufacturing
    workforce being added as a depreciable expense under
    Section 179 of the Tax Code. Currently, equipment itself
    can be treated as a deductible basis, but improving our human
    capital is just as important to the Tax Code. And so this would help incentive
    specialized training as well. The impact that this
    would half on the jobs, assuming the pilot program could
    be undertaken in a half a dozen states with appropriate
    learning institutions, the first year I estimate our
    job growth would be 2,000 and the following year 4,000. If the Section 179
    incentive were enacted, I’m really confident that there
    would be substantial business community interest in
    this tax adjustment. I’m optimistic that this could
    spur the growth of jobs for small businesses rapidly, plus
    keep high-tech manufacturing strong, competitive,
    and recognized for quality in the U.S. Thank you, and I look forward
    to continuing to work on this project and with the
    Small Business Council. President Obama:
    Thanks, Darlene. Jeff Immelt:
    Mr. President, I think we’ve
    run a little bit over on time. I think you get a sense for
    the projects we’re working on. We were going to have Lew and
    John give you an update today, but I think we’ve run over. And we’ll find another
    way to give you an update on those projects. President Obama:
    I’ll call them up. Jeff Immelt:
    What I would say,
    the next 90 days, we’re going to keep doing
    what you’ve seen today. Three new focus areas. I think, infrastructure — we’re
    really trying to get a private financed infrastructure
    momentum building, so we plan to really focus
    on infrastructure over the next 90 days. Small business
    financing and creation, I think that’s going to
    be a key area of focus. And the third is, you know, the
    country has closed the gap from a cost standpoint versus India
    and China and other countries around the world
    from a manufacturing of software standpoint. We’re really going to try to
    reach out broadly and see if there’s ways we can get more
    forward direct investment or, as importantly, companies
    to really look at locating key jobs here. So those are the
    three big thrusts. I think you can get a sense
    that the team is committed to the task, and we want
    to build a jobs plan. And, you know, we want
    to make a difference. President Obama:
    Well, look, I am enormously
    impressed with the presentations that have been made. And I promise you we are
    going to act on a range of these recommendations. I think that it’s important
    to note that wisely, the focus of a lot of your
    recommendations are areas where we can execute. Either the private sector
    can execute on its own or the executive branch
    can execute on its own. I do think that sends a
    message to Congress though. We shouldn’t have to
    work around Congress. They should be part
    of this process. And it indicates
    the degree to which, regardless of whatever
    political camp you’re in, there are some common sense
    ideas that we can all embrace to make ourselves more
    competitive that should not be subject to the usual
    political gamesmanship. And this job council, I
    think, is highlighting a whole host of those. So I just want to
    make sure, Valerie, that this stuff gets to
    me as quickly as possible. So as soon as you guys have
    put something together, I want it on my desk. I want the relevant cabinet
    people to meet with me and figure out how are
    we implementing as quickly as possible. The last point I’ll make, in
    addition to just saying thank you, is the optimism that’s
    projected around this table, I think, is important. You know, we’ve gone through
    a very difficult time over the last couple of years. But every time I
    look at the data, every time I look at all the
    formidable challenges that are before us, I’m always struck
    by the fact that these are all solvable problems. These are not areas where
    we don’t have good ideas; we don’t know what to do. And you know, I think that if
    you look at the reporting that’s been out there just over
    the last week or two, it’s important for us
    to not be Pollyannaish. It’s important for us not to
    pretend like we fully recovered in the way we need to. There are a lot of people who
    are still hurting out there. But it’s also important
    to remember we’ve got enormous assets. We’ve got everything that’s
    going to be required to make these structural adjustments to
    ensure that we’re competitive. It doesn’t require
    radical changes. It requires just some common
    sense approaches to problems. And I think the more that those
    of you around this table in business leadership
    are pointing that out, that the sky is not
    falling, the question is, are we going to build on the
    strengths that we’ve got and are we going to eliminate
    some of the weaknesses that are holding us back. There’s no reason why the 21st
    century can’t be the American century, just like
    the 20th century was. And you guys can amplify that,
    probably even more effectively than I can because when
    I say it, well, you know, I’m an elected official. I’m a President. He’s supposed to say that. So sometimes it
    may get discounted. But I know this is
    something that you guys believe in deeply as well. So Jeff, thanks for
    your leadership. Great job. Jeff Immelt:
    Thanks. Thank you
    very much. Thanks. (applause)

    Learn basic English vocabulary for cleaning your house
    Articles, Blog

    Learn basic English vocabulary for cleaning your house

    August 9, 2019


    Hi, guys. Welcome to EngVid. I just want to
    say to you that I have the power. Anybody who watched He-Man will remember this. And
    if not, oh, well. I’ve got a lesson for you today, and it’s on cleaning. This, my friend,
    is a vacuum cleaner. Look at it. Elegant lines. [Spits] A little dirty, but we’ll clean that
    up in a second or two when we start the video. This is on a basic lesson for cleaning. There’s
    another video you should check out. It gives more phrases you can use with cleaning. Right?
    You will like that one, too. But anyway, let’s get moving, right? There we are, over here. Mr. E. Oh, no. He
    has spilled something. “Spill” — what is “spilling”? A “spill” is when you have, you
    know, a liquid, and you drop it on the floor, and it goes everywhere. Sometimes, you can
    spill things like rice, sugar, or salt because they’re uncountable and they go everywhere
    like a liquid. “He has spilled his tea.” The cleaner isn’t happy. But I don’t think he’s
    using the right tool for this job. Do you? Do you know what this is called? Do you know
    what he should use? By the end of this lesson, you’re going to know that and a few handy phrases
    to show you are a native English speaker, yeah? All right. So what’s happening in the picture?
    My friend is cleaning up the spill. But I think he’s using the wrong tool. Booyah! “Wipe.”
    The first thing we want to talk about is “wipe”. What is “to wipe”? Well, when you “wipe” something,
    you take a paper or a rag — you know cloth. Or — cloth, rag, paper. These are the things
    we use to wipe. It’s a soft movement where you just kind of do this motion
    or this to clean something. Okay? Now, we wipe tables, and we wipe walls to
    clean them. Right? So when something’s not serious, you can wipe it. It will go away
    easily. Right? Unlike my last girlfriend. Anyway. “Wash”, “wash”, what is “washing”? Well, you
    should wash your hands, right, to get them clean. But we also need to wash other things.
    One of the things we wash is after you eat your food, you have your knife and your fork,
    right, and a plate. You put them in water. All right? See our little water here? This
    is a sink. That’s where you put them, by the way. Did you know they’re called “sink”? This
    is called a “sink”. You put your dishes in the sink, and you wash them.
    Okay? So we’ve got our sink. We also wash our clothes.
    You’re clean, right? I’m sure you don’t wear the same clothes all the time. You take them
    off. You put them in the machine. We call that a “washing machine”. Okay? So “wash” —
    you “wash” dishes; you “wash” your clothes. And that’s what we’ve got here. Another word
    for “clothes” by the way, boys and girls, “laundry”. A lot of times, we don’t say, “I’m
    washing my clothes.” In fact, we mostly say, “I’m doing my laundry”, but we’ll come back
    to that. Okay? So you’ve got “laundry” to wash. Now, “scrubbing” — “scrub”. “Scrub” — I’m
    missing something here. Oops. Pardon me. You scrub, and it’s hard. Remember I said when you
    use a cloth, you use it for soft? “Scrubbing” is when you want to go really, really hard on
    something because it’s hard to clean. Now, what do we scrub? We scrub floors. Okay? You
    have dirt on the floor. You have to get down there and scrub it. You scrub your sink because
    remember, you’ve been washing things. You need to scrub to get the dirt out. It won’t
    come out with a wipe. Okay? There’s a lot of dirt there. Please, oh, please, tell me you
    scrub your toilet. Don’t wipe your toilet, okay? You know what you use it for, so you
    need to scrub that thing clean. Okay? Or don’t invite me to your house. Some of you have,
    but I noticed you only wipe your toilets. I’m not coming. Change that attitude — change
    your behavior, I’ll be there. Okay? And walls. Walls get dirty. People throw things; food goes
    on the wall. Especially if you have babies, it goes up on the wall. You need to scrub
    it because it goes into the paint. Okay? So we’ve got — the verb is to “scrub”, and
    we have — what do you scrub? Floors, sinks, toilets, and walls. And usually, we use a —
    and this is the word you want to use — a “brush”. It’s a similar to what you do to
    brush your teeth. It’s a brush you put in your hands, and you scrub, okay? So we’ve got “scrub”, “wash”, “wipe”. What
    else can you do in your house? Sweep. Now, sometimes, people have wood floors or hard
    floors with no carpet. And we sweep the floor, okay? I don’t have a broom. I’m sorry. I had a
    vacuum cleaner. Who knew? The art department brought in a vacuum — no broom. But a broom.
    You see people doing this, right? Okay? The thing they’re using is a “broom”. That’s what
    Mr. E was using here, a broom. But I don’t think a broom is a good thing for a spill. Do
    you? A broom moves things. A spill is liquid, remember? So I think he’s using the wrong
    tool. We’re going to have to figure this out. But with a broom, if paper or you have — yeah.
    Sugar, dirt, you can clean it up. But water, it’s not good for. So you use a broom to sweep.
    “Sweep” is the verb we use when we use brooms. And we sweep floors. Not
    walls, people; just the floor. “Vacuum.” Remember? Okay. “Vacuum.” “Vacuum”
    is for carpets and rugs. Not — you don’t always have wood on the floor, okay? You have
    material or cloth. Right? Maybe it looks like this on the floor. You need a vacuum to suck
    up the dirt. It “vacuums”. You “vacuum”. When you say, “I’m going to vacuum my house”, I
    know you have carpets or rugs. A “carpet” is usually from wall to wall. The whole floor
    has it on. A “rug” is usually a small area. This is a “rug” because it’s a small area,
    while a carpet would be from wall to wall. Okay? So if you don’t know what you have in
    your house, if you go to one side of the house or room, there’s carpet — you go to the other
    side, it’s still there on all the walls, you have carpet. If you’re standing on a small
    space in a big room, it’s a rug. All right? Cool. So you need a vacuum
    cleaner to vacuum, all right? What’s the last one we’re going to do? This
    is what this guy should be using: a mop. When we say “mop up a mess” or “mop something up”,
    you need this. It’s got strings on it, and you need a bucket. Okay? So you put it in
    there; you take it; and you go over the water. So he should use a “mop”, really, not a broom, to
    clean up a spill. He would mop it up, squeeze, push it, and put the water into the bucket.
    And then, you take the bucket and empty it in your sink. Now, you know why you have
    to scrub the sink. Pretty cool, huh? So these are six things we want to talk about
    for general cleaning of the house. “Mopping” is for wet things, for liquids. “Vacuum” is for
    carpets and rugs. “Brooms” are for floors, normal floors. You brush — oh, sorry. You
    “scrub” hard surfaces, things that are really, really dirty. You use a “brush”. You wash
    in the sink your dishes and your clothes in a washing machine. And you wipe most things
    many times, right? In the day, you’ll wipe things all the time. Just clean it a little bit.
    You like that? Cool. I’m going to disappear for a second because I’m going to give you
    three handy phrases you’re going to like. It’s the way we, in English, save time
    saying is what we do for jobs. Ready? Hey. Oh, I was just taking up — hold on.
    Remember I told you we’re going to do three phrases that we use constantly? Well, it’s
    — we call it “shorthand”. “Shorthand” means to say many things by saying just a little
    bit, okay? In this case, in North America and in Britain and other places, we say some
    things to get the message across quickly. I might say to you, “I’m doing the laundry.” And
    you go, “What do you mean ‘doing the laundry’?” Well, it means I’m washing — remember we
    talked about the washing machine? I put it in the washing machine. Then I put it in the
    dryer. Some people hang their clothes outside if it’s nice weather, you know, so the sun can
    dry it. And then, after I do that, I fold them. I fold the clothes. And when I’m finished
    folding the clothes, I put them away. Now, instead of saying — “What are you doing?” —
    “well, I’m washing the clothes; I’m drying my clothes; I’m folding my clothes; I’m putting
    them away”, I say, “I’m doing the laundry.” Cool? That’s one shorthand. So you can tell
    your friends if they call, “Hey! Do you want to go to the store?” “Sorry, dude. I’ve got
    to do the laundry.” They’ll know it’s a long job, two hours, and
    then, no time. How about the next one, “do the dishes”. What
    do you mean “do the dishes”? Are you going to make them? You have a factory where you
    make dishes and give to people? No. It’s along the same idea. We talk about — remember “washing”?
    I said “washing”, “wash”? Same lesson for before, right? But now, we’re using it with
    phrases that we use in Canada. So if you say, “Man, I’ve got to stay home tonight. I’ve
    got to do the laundry, and I’ve got to do the dishes; or I’m doing the laundry, and
    I’m doing the dishes”, what we’re saying is if we’re doing the dishes, I’m washing the
    dishes. I have to rinse them. That means put them in just water. When I wash, I put them
    with soap to clean them. To “rinse” is to get rid of the soap and the dirt. Then, I
    have to dry them. I take that paper we talked about or a cloth, and I dry them. Gosh, this
    is a lot of work. And then, I put them away. If you have a dishwasher, you’re very lucky
    because your parents are nice, and they’re making life easy. We had the army in our house.
    The washer, the dryer, the putter-away. And I was the tallest, so I had to dry and put
    them away. It wasn’t fun. Lucky guys. Okay. And if you don’t have it, no dishwasher,
    you know what it’s like. All right? Now, final one is “take out the trash”. Remember
    I came back with the trash? I was about the take it out. What does that mean? Well, I’m
    going to take the bag out, first off, right? This is a big job. It’s not easy, you know.
    I’ve got to take the bag out. Then, I’ve got to tie it. Okay? I’ve got to tie it. Then,
    I’ve got to — here’s the part they don’t tell you. When you take out the trash, it’s
    not just tying one bag. You go around your house, and you look for all the of the garbage,
    and you put it all in the bag. That’s why when someone says, “Take out the trash” and
    they go “five seconds”, I’m like, “I’ll call you in twenty minutes.” I have to go upstairs,
    downstairs, grab it, put it away, tie it up. Then, I take it outside. You know where that
    is. Ten miles away. Walk, walk, walk, smelly trash or garbage. Canada says “garbage”, and
    America usually “trash”. Either one’s okay. Then, you take it outside. Then, you come
    back to your house, and you replace the bag. That’s right. You pick this back up; you put a
    new bag in; and you put a new bag everywhere. Only then have you “taken out the trash”.
    You thought it was easy, didn’t you? No. So when you hear us saying these things, it’s the
    shorthand for saying “my job” or “my chores”. “Chores” are home jobs — “chores”. Okay?
    So you’ll see people say, “I’ve got chores to do”, and they mean “it’s jobs in my house
    that I don’t get paid for. I have chores to do. I’ve got to do the laundry, do the dishes,
    then take out the trash. I’ll be two or three hours.” And you go, “Phew! That’s
    a lot of work. I get it.” Okay? The only thing I forgot — before I go — because
    there are always some of you people who are really clean, clean freaks; you like your
    house clean — you’re going to say “dust”. What does “dust” mean? Well, “dust” means
    when you go to your furniture — you know, your chairs, your tables — and you take one of
    these; you take this and go [spraying sound]. And you clean that dust, that gray stuff,
    that stuff that flies in the air, and you clean it off your furniture. It’s a lot of
    fun. I never do it. I’ve got dust bunnies. I’ve got dust Godzillas. Okay? Go out and look on the Internet “dust bunny”. It
    means “little ball of dust that grows because you don’t dust.” All right? So look. I think
    I’ve cleaned up. See how I like that? I’ve cleaned up all the trash. I’ve helped you
    understand. Should he be mopping or sweeping? E? “Oh, no, dude. You should be mopping up
    that mess.” And since I’ve cleaned up your vocabulary for cleaning, I’m going to take
    off out of here. All right? Because I’ve got some dishes, and you know, I’ve got the trash
    to do and the vacuuming because E is a lazy bastard. All right. See you guys later. Have
    a good one. I’m working on the railroad.