walter russell mead peter berger lilia shevtsova adam garfinkle andrew a. michta
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Jobs of the Future: The Loved Ones

If the great recession has spelled doom for traditional employment sectors like manufacturing and construction, that doesn’t mean that new jobs across the board are nowhere to be found. Via Meadia has looked into new growth in many unconventional job fields; today the New York Times profiles another: veterinary medicine:

Dr. Suter, at North Carolina State, has performed bone-marrow transplants on 65 dogs, with 10 more now on the waiting list. Many veterinarians offer hospice care, too, mapping out a treatment plan that lets a pet spend the remainder of its life at home, its pain eased through a program of palliative care.

In my father’s childhood, people shot their dogs when they got sick. In my childhood, we took them to the vet to have them put down. Now they get bone marrow transplants.

Like all infant industries, pet health care on this scale is developing and will develop further as the economy changes, but it’s just another of the many new niche industries with the potential to offer good pay at many different skill levels.

And advanced care for pets is just one of the many needs and must-haves of the 21st century. “Man is such a wanting animal,” wrote Thomas Carlyle. Don’t worry; as old jobs disappear or are eaten by machines, new ones will appear.

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  • Jacksonian Libertarian

    I agree, as old jobs disappear new jobs will rise to take their place. Our problem at the moment isn’t that there aren’t any jobs that the unemployed could do; it’s that the Government is taking over $1 Trillion a year from the Capital needed to create them.
    “There is a reason it’s called Capitalism, it’s because Capital is what fuels it.” Jacksonian Libertarian
    The Government is stealing all the fuel.

  • R McDonnell

    Interesting stuff. How long will it be before
    A) We see vet care costs start rise significantly,

    B) Owners feel the need to buy pet health insurance to help defray the costs of procedures performed on their pets, and

    C) The owner no longer legally has the option to put Rover down when he’s been diagnosed with a terminal condition?

  • Stephen

    Only extraordinarily wealthy societies could afford this. I’ve been to several places in the world where such extravagance would be seen as decadence.

  • NikFromNYC

    Kill the poor.

  • Abbie Normal

    Last year we put one of our cats through chemotherapy. Bought her another nine months.

    It was a tad pricey, but not out of reach.

  • http://therandomtexan.wordpress.com Mike Anderson

    D) Impecunious pet owners will declare veterinary care a Fundamental Human Right and demand a National Pet Insurance program.

  • PJ/Maryland

    There already is pet health insurance. However, unlike people insurance, it is not invisibly paid by a third party (ie an employer) but is paid by the pet owner. I expect the insurance companies can look after themselves on this, and the insurance purchasers will be aware of how much the insurance is costing them.

  • JeremyR

    Erm, in poor rural areas people still shoot their dogs when they are sick. (My neighbor had to do it, actually had to get a friend of his to do it)

  • RS

    As standards of living fall in America, we can expect this kind of spending to decrease.

    In a green dominated world, they will probably eat dogs for scarce protein as the elites dine on Wagu beef.

  • Thom

    maybe off topic….All I know is i’ve been watching this commercial on HuLu, where the kitties are crying that all they want is a home……lots of kitties that deserve a home….but you can’t have a baby and give it up for adoption, gotta kill it, save the kitties though! Maybe this pet industry is getting out of hand morally and otherwise??

  • Rich K

    Im surprised that in that 2700 pages of Obamacare that pets arent included.OR ARE THEY?
    I also think the private space launch industry is going to go nuts too if they liability issues dont crush them in the cradle.

  • Kevin

    My ex wife was an NC State grad , and when someone from Cary brought in a bullfrog they had run over and paid $500 for care, I knew my life as a kept man was guaranteed… Or so I thought.

  • S.H. Wilson

    Will this now require an individual mandate to buy health insurance for pets?

  • hanmeng

    Looking at canine trend care leads me to believe that in the future dogs will be treated better than people.

  • Jeff

    These veterinary jobs, like most “jobs of the future” are service jobs.

    The problem with service jobs is that they are dependent on an export businesses that can bring dollars into the community from outside.

    Many American cities used to depend on manufacturers as their export businesses. Now they depend on medical spending. Medicare money comes into town through the hospitals and flows into the local service economy.

    When the Federal government inevitably cuts back on deficit spending, the cities and towns that now depend on Medicare dollars will lose their service businesses, such as veterinarians that work on doctors’ and nurses’ pets.

    Every town needs businesses that can bring dollars in from outside, and veterinary medicine can’t do that.

    We desperately need jobs of the future that also bring money in from the outside world. Manufacturing jobs are hard to replace in a number of ways.

  • http://www.thedonovan.com/the_farm Beth Donovan

    Vet prices have already gone through the roof. I used to be able to get my dogs immunized and checked for worms each year for about $35. Now, our vet is charging $150 per animal for a ‘well animal visit’, before the immunizations are given.

    Fortunately, I am a small farmer, and I can purchase all and give all the immunizations except rabies to all my animals – dogs, cats, goats, and a couple of retired horses. I still have to pay a vet for the rabies, but I gotta tell you, there are few people who can afford the kind of prices that a lot of small animal vets are charging these days.

    I predict more abandoned animals than ever. (That’s why we have so many dogs and cats – people dump them out here in the country all the time!).

  • Larry J

    My wife is a Filipina and grew up poor. She said that they had dogs as pets and loved them, but if they started limping, they ended up in a pot. She says “Americans are crazy.”

    I also have it on good authority that short haired dog tastes better than long haired dog. Take that for what it’s worth.

  • https://www.facebook.com/ritchietheriveter Ritchie The Riveter

    As they said in Jurassic Park, life finds a way … the question is, how many wrong ways will it be influenced to go down before it finds the right way?

    What we have here is an example of the power of personal initiative … the not-so-secret sauce that keeps free people free and prosperous.

    It is our ace-in-the-hole against those who … in large part because they continue to apply the top-down paradigms of socio-economic management … merely build-to-print at a lower cost than we can. Personal initiative allows us to get inside/outside/around-and-clean-through the OODA loop of our more-hierarchial competitors and out-compete them when it comes to meeting the needs of humanity.

    That is, when we encourage its application.

    The problems we have gotten ourselves into stem in large part from the discouragement and inhibition of personal initiative by the application of the Blue model as a panacea for humanity’s ills … taking millions out of our own OODA loops, and leaving them waiting for others to wake up and figure out the answers … kind of like the German armored divisions waited for ol’ Adolf to wake up on D-Day before acting (thank God!).

    Even those who still have the ambition to succeed in this environment, are steered away from the right answers by the distorted feedback of the Blue model … where political connection leads to crony capitalism … where the focus of business is on how to game the Tax Code and government grants as much as it is to make a good product/service … where going out on a limb with an new idea is like walking through multiple minefields: regulatory traps, litigation, even the simple act of making one’s management look like dunces because it wasn’t their idea.

    As I say repeatedly, the outsourcing of our personal authority and responsibility that the Blue model demands and thrives upon, is the central problem we face as a nation today … everything else is just a symptom.

  • http://www.theatreofthedamned.com Tom Richards

    Don’t worry; as old jobs disappear or are eaten by machines, new ones will appear.

    But will many of the new jobs (at least, new jobs that anyone would pay someone else a living wage to do) be amenable to being filled by low-skilled workers? All the demand in the world for vets and coders and biotechnologists won’t translate into jobs for anyone of below average intelligence.

    There is a fundamental difference: in the past, new machines did one particular thing that people had previously done. Increasingly, machines will be capable of doing everything that at least some people can do.

  • Walter Sobchak

    The lesson here is that we can have health care witout government intervention.

  • David Dillon

    One problem with this is that there is a developing shortage of large animal vets, because the small animal market is so lucrative. It can be hard work, often in the field, and may require living away from the conveniences of a big city. But there’s alot of big animals out there that need services – cattle, horses, and other livestock.

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