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Businessweek Archives

Bush Is Already Investing In Human Capital

Readers Report


In regards to "We should focus on human capital, not capital" (Economic Viewpoint, July 27), Alan S. Blinder overlooks the investments in human capital that are already under way in the Bush Administration--investments that I am convinced will lead to the very productivity Blinder desires. Blinder states, correctly, that there are three ways to "boost output per hour"--improve technology, accumulate private capital, or improve work-force quality.

Fortunately for our nation, President Bush has built his economic growth strategy around all three goals: capital incentives, dramatic investments in technology, and human resources. He recognizes the importance of a well-trained and productive work force, and his record shows it. This spring, the President designated six states--among them Maine--to develop and pilot youth-apprenticeship programs that can be replicated nationwide. He has introduced a comprehensive youth-apprenticeship plan to back up his vision for our nation.

And he's right about youth apprenticeship, because for too long our education system has failed the majority of our kids who are not enrolled in college preparatory classes. President Bush's Job Training 2000 initiative will untangle the web of training options currently available: creating one-stop shopping for vocational training; certifying programs that meet the needs of local industries; and offering vouchers to help workers get the training they need.

John R. McKernan Jr.

Augusta, Me.

Editor's note: Governor McKernan is national chairman of the Education Commission of the States, Jobs for America's Graduates, and National Governors Association Committee on Human Resources.

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