What is Wrong With America? We Don’t Like “Dirty” Jobs

This could be Part 1 of a 10,000 part series, but one of the problems I’m always yammering on about it is our failure to understand that prosperity only comes when you make, mine or grow things.  Keep in mind that I consider my own work pretty much useless as compared to what any plumber, auto mechanic, doctor or drywall installer does in the course of the day.  There is some point in what I do, but I don’t kid myself in to thinking that the world would be worse off, fundamentally, if my entire job title was scrubbed from the books.  The trouble we have is that people who are government bureaucrats, college gender studies professors, lawyers, think tank employees, etc believing they are doing something as important (or even more important) than those people who grow our food and make our clothes.

As we look for ways to fix our nation, one of the most important tasks will be to re-invigorate the concept that work – real work – is honorable.  That the man or woman getting dirty day by day to ensure we have the necessities is doing something 2nd in importantce only to raising children (the fact that we don’t consider raising children to be that important – as we can see in the liberal attitudes towards stay-at-home-mom Mrs. Romney – is an article for another day).  As it turns out, Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs fame from television has written a letter to Romney on this very subject.  To quote:

…I shared my theory that most of these “problems” were in fact symptoms of something more fundamental – a change in the way Americans viewed hard work and skilled labor. That’s the essence of what I’ve heard from the hundreds of men and women I’ve worked with on Dirty Jobs.Pig farmers, electricians, plumbers, bridge painters, jam makers, blacksmiths, brewers, coal miners, carpenters, crab fisherman, oil drillers…they all tell me the same thing over and over, again and again – our country has become emotionally disconnected from an essential part of our workforce.  We are no longer impressed with cheap electricity, paved roads, and indoor plumbing. We take our infrastructure for granted, and the people who build it.

Today, we can see the consequences of this disconnect in any number of areas, but none is more obvious than the growing skills gap. Even as unemployment remains sky high, a whole category of vital occupations has fallen out of favor, and companies struggle to find workers with the necessary skills. The causes seem clear. We have embraced a ridiculously narrow view of education. Any kind of training or study that does not come with a four-year degree is now deemed “alternative.” Many viable careers once aspired to are now seen as “vocational consolation prizes,” and many of the jobs this current administration has tried to “create” over the last four years are the same jobs that parents and teachers actively discourage kids from pursuing. (I always thought there something ill-fated about the promise of three million “shovel ready jobs” made to a society that no longer encourages people to pick up a shovel.)…

Precisely – now, what does Mr. Rowe want?  He continues…

…Certainly, we need more jobs, and you were clear about that in Tampa. But the Skills Gap proves that we need something else too.  We need people who see opportunity where opportunity exists. We need enthusiasm for careers that have been overlooked and underappreciated by society at large. We need to have a really big national conversation about what we value in the workforce, and if I can be of help to you in that regard, I am at your service – assuming of course, you find yourself in a new address early next year…

Rowe goes on to note that he wrote Obama the same sort of letter four years ago and never heard back…but it appears that Romney has now read the letter.  Romney is unlikely as a man to lead us on a revolution – but curiously enough he is more likely than Obama (for all the “fundamental transformation of America” that Obama is on about, all he’s really doing is consolidating something that Chesterton predicted more than 100 years ago – that the Ruling Class would call itself “socialist”, put us all in property-less economic straightjackets and, straight faced, tell us they care about the little guy).  I hope that Romney really ponders the letter and starts to talk about he issues raised.  Cutting taxes and spending; very important.  Reforming our regulatory system; vital.  But unless we become an America of working people doing the dirty job of building civilization brick by brick and girder by girder, then we’re ultimately doomed.

192 thoughts on “What is Wrong With America? We Don’t Like “Dirty” Jobs

  1. Jeremiah September 9, 2012 / 8:58 pm

    Make, mine, and grow things. I agree with the gesture. But kinda hard to do those things when people keep voting for liberal democrats for public office. Liberal democrats are against all forms of work, except forced/slave labor by the State/government. Private industry is frowned upon by Obama, he doesn’t want people to have the freedom to pursue their dreams, because he is a communist. His father raised him in communist philosophy, and that was his dream to one day be the head of a communist empire.

    • neocon1 September 10, 2012 / 6:08 pm

      duane vaseline

      really to bad you cant instruct him how…….you not knowing an exit from an entrance and all.

  2. Amazona September 10, 2012 / 9:48 am


    “In the fascinating biography of Teamsters and Mafia hit-man Frank Sheeran, “I Heard You Paint Houses,” the lifelong thug describes a favor he performed while he was president of Teamsters Local 326 in Wilmington, Delaware.

    In 1972 Sheeran received a visit from “a very prominent lawyer” he knew who was “very big in the Democratic Party” in Delaware. The November general election was approaching, and the race for the U.S. Senate seat held by a Republican was expected to be close. The lawyer wanted help in preventing the distribution of a paid Republican political ad – an insert in the Delaware-wide newspapers – that would run for a week and expose the campaign misrepresentations by the Democratic challenger. Sheeran promised the operative that he “would hire some people and put them on the picket line.” He added, “People nobody would mess with.”

    The picket line went up, the papers were not delivered all week, and, as Sheeran said, “The day after the election the informational picket line came down, and the newspaper went back to normal and Delaware had a new United States Senator.” His name was Joe Biden. Thereafter, said admitted extortionist, thief and murderer Sheeran, of Biden, “You could reach out for him, and he would listen.” [Emphasis added.]

  3. mitch September 10, 2012 / 9:53 am

    Cluster didn’t you think my jibe about pizza was funny? And what’s even funnier is that Ama thinks that because I like BBQ sauce on pizza it’s a code word. I live in one of the BBQ capitals of the country so the only “code” is when I use a discount coupon with a bar-code at Oklahoma Joes.

    • Amazona September 10, 2012 / 10:20 am

      But mitche, you haven’t been keeping up! EVERYTHING is racial code these days.

      Ever since you rabidly radical Libs started pointing out racial code in just about every word, phrase or comment, it’s been made clear that no one in this nation—at least no white person—ever says anything, anything at all, without it being dripping with racism and racially motivated hatred. You just need to know how to read the code.

      Why, at the Republican convention, when someone said when you need to get a job done you turn to an American, that was explained to us by some very very earnest Leftist code readers as racial code, because the hidden meaning was that Obama is not really an American, and Obama is half black, so the word American is really racial code for the black half of his heritage.

      (I think I got that right—-it was pretty convoluted, and there was a lot of spitting and snarling going on.)

      BBQ is a slam dunk for racial code, couldn’t be any clearer.

    • Amazona September 10, 2012 / 10:25 am

      The only thing funny about your pizza comment was your reference to every Hawaiian pizza coming with an “official” birth certificate.

      But as a “jibe” or as a comment at all, it was pretty lame.

      Evidently where you live, if you slap something on a flat round crust it’s “pizza”. But not really. It’s just stuff, like BBQ sauce, on a flat round crust. You guys really like to redefine words, don’t you?

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