04 21 2015
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  • When should we use military to enforce US goals? NASHUA, N.H. (AP) — Rand Paul lashed out Saturday at military hawks in the Republican Party in a clash over foreign policy dividing the packed GOP presidential field. Paul, a first-term senator from Kentucky who favors a smaller U.S. footprint in the world, said that some of his Republican colleagues would do more harm in international affairs than would leading Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton. "The other Republicans will criticize the president and Hillary Clinton for their foreign policy, but they would just have done the same thing — just 10 times over," Paul said on the closing day of a New Hampshire GOP conference that brought about 20 presidential prospects to the first-in-the-nation primary state. "There's a group of folks in our party who would have troops in six countries right now, maybe more," Paul said. Foreign policy looms large in the presidential race as the U.S. struggles to resolve diplomatic and military conflicts across the globe. The GOP presidential class regularly rails against President Barack Obama's leadership on the world stage, yet some would-be contenders have yet to articulate their own positions, while others offered sharply different visions. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, whose brother, President George W. Bush, authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, declined to say whether he would have done anything different then. Yet Jeb Bush acknowledged a shift in his party against new military action abroad. "Our enemies need to fear us, a little bit, just enough for them to deter the actions that create insecurity," Bush said earlier in the conference. He said restoring alliances "that will create less likelihood of America's boots on the ground has to be the priority, the first priority of the next president." The GOP's hawks were well represented at the event, led by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who has limited foreign policy experience but articulated a muscular vision during his Saturday keynote address. Walker said the threats posed by radical Islamic terrorism won't be handled simply with "a couple bombings." "We're not going to wait till they bring the fight to us," Walker said. "We're going to bring the fight to them and fight on their soil." South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham addressed the question of putting U.S. troops directly in the battle against the Islamic State group militants by saying there is only one way to defeat the militants: "You go over there and you fight them so they don't come here." Texas Sen. Ted Cruz suggested an aggressive approach as well. "The way to defeat ISIS is a simple and clear military objective," he said. "We will destroy them." Businesswoman Carly Fiorina offered a similar outlook. "The world is a more dangerous and more tragic place when America is not leading. And America has not led for quite some time," she said. Under Obama, a U.S.-led coalition of Western and Arab countries is conducting regular airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. also has hundreds of military advisers in Iraq helping Iraqi security forces plan operations against the Islamic State, which occupies large chunks of northern and western Iraq. Paul didn't totally reject the use of military force, noting that he recently introduced a declaration of war against the Islamic State group. But in an interview with The Associated Press, he emphasized the importance of diplomacy. He singled out Russia and China, which have complicated relationships with the U.S., as countries that could contribute to U.S. foreign policy interests. "I think the Russians and the Chinese have great potential to help make the world a better place," he said. "I don't say that naively that they're going to, but they have the potential to." Paul suggested the Russians could help by getting Syrian President Bashar Assad to leave power. "Maybe he goes to Russia," Paul said. Despite tensions with the U.S., Russia and China negotiated alongside Washington in nuclear talks with Iran. Paul has said he is keeping an open mind about the nuclear negotiations. "The people who already are very skeptical, very doubtful, may not like the president for partisan reasons," he said, and "just may want war instead of negotiations."
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Young people workforceNEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- A job used to be the next step after a diploma. But now, young people aren't in any rush to start working.

Less than 78% of people aged 20 to 34 either have jobs or are looking for work, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's down from the peak of 83% in 2000, and the lowest since the 1970s.

The biggest thing keeping young people out of work is the weak economy.

Recessions are particularly hard on the young, with last-in, first-out policies at many organizations and a preference at firms to freeze hiring before they start laying off employees, which hurts recent grads.

But there are other reasons as well -- what economists call "structural changes" -- that could mean a permanent shift in workplace demographics.

Staying in school: Economists generally agree that, aside from the economy, extended education is the biggest reason why today's youth are shunning the job market.

More people are going to college now -- 25% more compared to 2000 -- and they're taking longer to finish.

There are a few reasons why young people are spending more years at school.

First, they're getting more advanced degrees.

"We used to say that a high school degree wasn't sufficient to provide a middle class income," said Bill Rodgers, a professor and chief economist at Rutgers University's Heldrich Center for Workforce Development. "Now we're saying no longer is a bachelor's degree."

Second, college is getting more expensive. Rodgers believes the increased financial burden of higher education is also causing people to take longer to finish, as they'll take fewer classes per semester or drop out for periods of time before scraping up enough money to enroll again.

Staying home: Since 2000, married women between the ages of 25 and 34 have been leaving the labor force at a slightly higher rate than young people at large, according to BLS.

There could be many reasons for that, but Rodgers thinks stagnant wages on top of rising child care costs are two of them.

"The recession has caused a lot of people to do a gut check on what they want in their lives," said Rodgers. "They've decided they want to spend time with their kids."

Living longer: People are also living longer. Longer lives often mean delaying some of life's big mile stones -- graduating from college, getting married, buying a house and having kids.

"They are going to live a lot longer than their parents and their grandparents, and they know it," said William Galston, a Brookings Institution fellow who has studied issues of 20-somethings. "If you think you're going to live until 90, why rush into marriage at 23?"

Yet marriage, and the responsibilities that often come along with it, is a big incentive for people to get and keep a job. "Committed consumption" is what economists call it.

"You're more answerable than you were before," said Galston. "You can't just drift around."

Giving up: Changing workplace trends have meant fewer opportunities for those just starting out. A major one: the baby boomers delaying retirement. They're also living longer, and they're realizing they may not have stashed away enough money for retirement

As a result, they tend to hold on to their jobs.

The percentage of the people aged 55 and over in the workforce has gone from just over 30% in 2000 to over 40% currently, according to BLS.

The result is fewer opportunities on the lower end of the job ladder, which has kept a lot of millennials on the sidelines.

 

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