If you can shovel coal, then you can learn to code … right?

Joe Biden has a remarkable ability to say really stupid stuff, doesn’t he?

His latest was telling a (small) crowd that thousands of jobs would be lost when he puts the brakes on the coal industry, but not to worry:

“If you can go down 300 or 3,000 feet in a mine, you can learn to code.  If you can shovel coal, you can program a computer.”

Say, what?


Sleepy Joe seems to overlook a few basic points…


Programming a computer  (aka. “coding”) requires a specific skill set that centers around symbolic logic – representing “concrete” things in words and numbers … and then processing them in an unforgiving logical order.

Not all people are good at that.  Some because of limiting DNA (i.e. “can’t”);  some because they lack interest (“don’t want to”); some because they lack academic or vocational training.

I guess that Biden is aiming at that latter subset, ignoring the facts that (1) less than 1 in 10 miners has a college education (2) many didn’t graduate high school – with some studies pegging that number around 1 in 3, and (3) according to the National Mining Association, the average age of a coal miner is 50.

It may be tough to teach the old dogs new tricks … and, oh yeah, as far as the young bucks are concerned, consider:

According to ABC News — the average starting salary for a coal mine worker is $60,000 … while the average salary for an Entry-Level Computer Programmer is $51,344. Source

Maybe the young bucks are making economically rational decisions.


Nice try, Joe.


Follow on Twitter @KenHoma

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