Philosophy Majors Actually Earn More Than Welders

Matthew Yglesias: “Early in the Fox Business debate, Marco Rubio took a strong stand in favor of vocational education. ‘For the life of me I don’t know why we stigmatize vocational education,’ he said. ‘Welders make more money than philosophers. We need more welders than philosophers.'”

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“According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary of a welder is just over $37,420 a year. As you can see, philosophy majors do considerably better than that. This isn’t to say there’s no strong case for vocational education. But it makes perfect sense for people who are interested in philosophy and can do the work to study it.”


  1. Usual strawman argument from Rubio–nobody stigmatizes vocational training, everybody says nice things about it, and nobody, probably including most welders, dreams of their kids going to vocational school someday. There’s nothing wrong with it, and we do need them, but it’s not going to get you into the middle class. And if you don’t have a strong union, you’re pretty much screwed as a welder. He didn’t see fit to mention that for some reason.

    Does he want to invest in infrastructure rebuilding? Nope. Does he want to provide more financial aid for people who want to go to vocational school? Said nothing about that.

    It’s just his way of excusing the fact that he doesn’t want to devote a lot of resources to getting young people a decent education. “They can just go to welder school.” While he went to college and studied political science, and if there’s a more useless major than philosophy, that’s probably it. 😀

  2. Voltaire would be pleased.

    Now if somebody could find stats on those “philosopher-kings” that anti-intellectual Harvard and Princeton grad Ted Cruz is always ranting about.

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