What value do we place on a child's time?

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Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 06:06 am
What value do we place on a child's time?

Labor has been commodified in the American culture.

I would guess that the average working person makes about $30 an hour. That would be $1200 per week and about $60,000 per year.

The average big corporate CEO makes about 500 times the average worker thus they make about $15,000 per hour.

How do we determine how much we value the time of a child? I guess we might say that a K-12 teacher makes average wages and has about 30 children in their classroom thus we value a child's time at about $1 per hour.

Do we evaluate a child's time too highly or too lowly? I think that we place too little value on a child's time.

The lower we place the value of a child's time the more likely will a parent or teacher spend less time with that child. The lower value we place on a child's time the more willing we are to allow that child to "waste time".

Adolescence appears to be something that has developed late in our culture. A hundred years ago a child became an adult at 16 and today that age often extends to the early to mid 20s.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 08:30 am
@coberst phil,
First, when has labor ever been anything less than a commodity? To say that it has become commoditized in one specific culture infers that it was not in another. It is a prime staple of ANY economy and an inherent part of it. I hear the French and quite possibly the Polish have something similar to this crazy thing called an economy, so why is it that American culture has commoditized labor? Are you singling that particular nation out from all other economies just because?

Second, I disagree on the average wage estimate. Average wage in the US for 2009 (according to US national wage index) is $41,794.29 (Pol. Calc.) and projected to rise $1336.40 to $43,085.69 in 2010. It would be at least another ten years before average wage were as high as you say.

Thirdly, though teachers make beans compared to other professions, roughly $40K a year Teacher Salary - Average Teacher Salaries - PayScalenakedscienceforums keeptouch, uncommonforum, unexplained-mysteries, onlinephilosophyclub, or any of the other few dozen posts that you posted the exact same post on.
 
manored
 
Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 11:37 am
@coberst phil,
I think this is not a matter to be analyzed through costs and gains. If I could chose between gaining X for 8 hours of work per day or 2X for 12 hours of work per day, I would chose 8 hours.

What value we place on a child's time I do not know, not mine, for I have no contact with children, nor of the society as a whole for I do not know enough about how my society raises its children to know how much value is placed on their time.

Im not sure if a value can be given, but I suppose we can at least save time for children, that is, do not let then be idle then they dont want to, as in, dont let your children get bored to death on the doctor's waiting room and things like that Smile
 
Lily
 
Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 01:39 pm
@coberst phil,
It's very important with education in our society, but children must be allowed to do play and have fun and just be children. I think what we have now works quite good, if anything we should put less pressure on the kids.
 
coberst phil
 
Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 02:13 pm
@coberst phil,


Our society commodifies labor thus the dollar value of time is a normal mode for determining value.

The more valuable a society considers a child's time to be the better care they make of the child's time. And the more valuable a child's time the less inclined a parent is to trade the time with the child for a minimum wage job.

If we placed a higher value on a child's time we could better recognize the importance of a good education.

Let us say that we felt that a child's time was worth $100 per hour. Would parents treat that child the same as if they set a value at $1? Would we value education at a much greater value? Would we value a teacher at a much greater value? Would a mother go to work at a minimum wage salary except in the most urgent need? Would we allow teens to waste so much time on non sense?


We are meaning creating creatures. As such the culture that we have created leaves much to be desired. I am convinced that if we do not change our culture very soon we will soon become toast. I think that the only avenue available for us is to convince adults to become self-actualizing self-learners in the hope that this will dramatically improve our overall level of intellectual sophistication.

I think that we can no longer afford the luxury of such an extended period of childhood behavior on the part of children. This generation and all future generations have little time left to correct the errors made by past generations. We are at or have passed a tipping point.

My fundamental premise is that the American citizens, as a group, are not intellectually sophisticated enough to comprehend the large number of catastrophic problems bearing down on us. If my premise is correct will this same population have sufficient sophistication to recognize this fact and to do something about it?

New theories in the natural sciences go immediately into the culture because there is often money in it. New theories in the human sciences take generations to reach the general culture. Our society is driven by technology and there is no way that we can intellectually keep up such that we can manage this terrible power that we have created unless somehow we can convince adults that they can no longer place their intellect with their year book in the attic when their school daze are over.
 
Khethil
 
Reply Sun 31 May, 2009 03:10 pm
@coberst phil,
Hmm, well, Hey Coberst,

I think your core point - the value-disproportionate 'rewards' - being dolled out is all well and good. So despite the banal revelation I'd have to agree on that. Still, what strikes me most about the point is this: Since when have any monetary rewards been managed, by labor, with any fairness?

Since the beginning of time labor has been commodified; that too hits with an aftertaste of obviousness. That "... labor has been commodified in the American culture", I suppose, would be true as well. If your suggesting more monetary value should be placed in those attending our children (e.g., teachers, child care) then, again, I'm with you. But this...

coberst;65798 wrote:
The lower we place the value of a child's time the more likely will a parent or teacher spend less time with that child.
... just doesn't follow.[INDENT] Who "we"? Our culture? So... if we value a child's time more by paying someone more, then mummy and daddy will want to spend more time with them because they seem them as worth more? How might this happen?
[/INDENT]
coberst;65798 wrote:
Adolescence appears to be something that has developed late in our culture. A hundred years ago a child became an adult at 16 and today that age often extends to the early to mid 20s.


Well, for one thing there have been adolescents since humans started aging. Besides how is this a bad thing? I suppose it depends on which aspects of life one's talking about. This point seems to add well to the general feeling of "I'm dissatisfied" that your post is carrying, but I'm not sure I see the connection to valuation of a child's time. In other words, that adolescence is contracting or expanding seems just as likely to value as devalue.

coberst;65855 wrote:
And the more valuable a child's time the less inclined a parent is to trade the time with the child for a minimum wage job.


This, again, doesn't follow. I'm not sure it even makes sense. Up top, you said this 'valuation' on our culture is made based on the dollar. So, if we decide that a child's time is worth more dollars (which also doesn't make any sense) then the parent (who presumably doesn't have a job) is more likely to spend more time with the dollar-valuable child than go make dollars? I'll leave off commenting on further examples of this. In short, you haven't shown the "value" -vs- Dollars = Time and Improvement correlation. Are we just kind of reaching for something to rail at? I have... I suppose we all have at one time or another.

Now this...

coberst;65855 wrote:
My fundamental premise is that the American citizens, as a group, are not intellectually sophisticated enough to comprehend the large number of catastrophic problems bearing down on us.

Is, I think, a true statement. But (and I don't know how much or if you've traveled abroad at all) isn't just us - not by a long shot. We're more gluttonous, a little backwards in some ways and fundamentalist in others, but by and large this lack of intellectual sophistication isn't endemic to citizens of the U.S. In the context to which you speak, this is an affliction that's - by and large - worldwide.

And your other sentiments that seem to say, "Wake up People!" I'll stand with you as well. But if I can offer some advice behind my criticisms: When we try and attribute the woes of the world to <this> or <that> one needs to keep in mind a couple of things: 1) Causal factors mix, match, amplify and mitigate as they bubble in the soup of "why" something's happening. One must be careful not to attribute too much to any single factor. -and- 2) If it feels like a weak argument, it probably is.

As to general valuations being askew: Sure, I think they are too. But this isn't a ball of thread we're going to untangle by pointing at the nearest CEO; sure, there's a BIG problem there (and they're certainly easy targets for their own piggery). But if the correlation's not there, let's not try and draw one.

Thanks for the opportunity to comment.
 
coberst phil
 
Reply Mon 1 Jun, 2009 01:37 pm
@coberst phil,
I suspect that home schoolers place greater value on their children's time than do the rest of us. Of course, much of the reason for home schooling is religious. It is obvious that Americans give little thought to the importance of education considering how wealth our nation is and how poor our educational system.

I have tried to quantify the unquantifiable. I am trying to judge a quality with quantity. This is just trying to focus attention on some important considerations that we seldom examine. People take notice when we talk about dollar evaluation because it is easily understood.

I suspect that home schoolers place greater value on their children's time than do the rest of us. Of course, much of the reason for home schooling is religious. It is obvious that Americans give little thought to the importance of education considering how wealth our nation is and how poor our educational system.

For such a wealthy nation America has a very poor educational system. I hope that Obama will change all that. What is required is to awaken the citizens to the dire situation that we are in.
 
manored
 
Reply Mon 1 Jun, 2009 04:51 pm
@coberst phil,
coberst;65855 wrote:


Our society commodifies labor thus the dollar value of time is a normal mode for determining value.

The more valuable a society considers a child's time to be the better care they make of the child's time. And the more valuable a child's time the less inclined a parent is to trade the time with the child for a minimum wage job.

If we placed a higher value on a child's time we could better recognize the importance of a good education.

Let us say that we felt that a child's time was worth $100 per hour. Would parents treat that child the same as if they set a value at $1? Would we value education at a much greater value? Would we value a teacher at a much greater value? Would a mother go to work at a minimum wage salary except in the most urgent need? Would we allow teens to waste so much time on non sense?

That may be true, but doesnt means we should atribuite a monetary value to everthing. For example: Lets say that X is the amount of money needed for a surgery that will save your life. Its probally better to have X then you need it than 5X months later.

I think how much we waste with children has little to do with how much time or attention we pay then. If there is any, I would even say its inversely proportional: The more you waste with your children, less likely to think they need something you are, incluiding attention. Poor parents, in a general manner, fell guilty they cant give their children much and try to compensate that by giving then attention then they manage to. People should probally consider spending time with their children more important than what seens to be considered today though.

coberst;65855 wrote:

I think that we can no longer afford the luxury of such an extended period of childhood behavior on the part of children. This generation and all future generations have little time left to correct the errors made by past generations. We are at or have passed a tipping point.

My fundamental premise is that the American citizens, as a group, are not intellectually sophisticated enough to comprehend the large number of catastrophic problems bearing down on us. If my premise is correct will this same population have sufficient sophistication to recognize this fact and to do something about it?

New theories in the natural sciences go immediately into the culture because there is often money in it. New theories in the human sciences take generations to reach the general culture. Our society is driven by technology and there is no way that we can intellectually keep up such that we can manage this terrible power that we have created unless somehow we can convince adults that they can no longer place their intellect with their year book in the attic when their school daze are over.
Remember the best tip of all:

DO NOT PANIC

You seem kinda overly negativist to me here Smile no matter how bad things are, its never good to see then the ways that lets the bad sides pointing out more than the good sides. If we try to force our children to go fast cause the world is gonna go BOOM, we will probally end up with a bunch of worried, depressed, negativist and confidence-lacking people. Culture cannot be changed from day to night. The healthy way to do the "philosophification", in my opinion, is to make sure children are exposed to philosopy and hope it sprouts.

We are the fuel of our technology so I dont think we will get outgrow and suffocated by it or anything, though I think thats not quite what you meant.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Mon 1 Jun, 2009 05:01 pm
@manored,
Since children make less than a dollar a day in most places where they are allowed/forced to work I'd say at a 14 hour day a child's time is worth 7.14 cents per hour.
 
 

 
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