The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by AE86 » Tue Mar 17, 2015 11:19 pm

Maybe they should emulate Singapore and eliminate the minimum wage.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by StroppyChops » Tue Mar 17, 2015 11:21 pm

And the sad part, AE, is that in Australia right now the government is throwing university entrance at kids who don't come even close to meet the minimums (even in medicine) just to get the numbers back up. My older brother got the one apprenticeship opportunity available per family in our region, and so while I never slept rough I had to build the ladder before I could climb it. I have respect for any young Khmer that's struggling to climb up.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by frank lee bent » Wed Mar 18, 2015 6:04 am

one big difference is that young Khmer are extremely risk averse.
they prefer a sure thing to a gamble no matter how potentially rewarding.

also, Khmer society is somewhat matriarchal, which does not encourage independence among the young.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by MekongMouse » Wed Mar 18, 2015 6:35 am

Hah, this conversation reminds me of the same old debate in the US. Our poor are like Khmer poor in that they're uneducated and have no ability to save money to improve their lot in life because the simple cost of existence takes up all their resources. Some do make it out, but it takes above average intelligence, physical aptitude, or luck. If you're an average person, you will never get out of that rut. Yet if you're an average person born to a middle class family, you just need to go with the flow; society will make sure you have access to college and employment. And here, even in an impoverished country like Cambodia, people are still so callous, talking about getting rid of the minimum wage and blaming the poor for their lot in life (despite the obvious historical reasons). The idea that there is no benefit to being born in a developed country is just absurd. Your passport, your family's wealth, your access to education, your access to clean water and sanitation, your welfare state, your minimum wage - all or some of it helped you get where you are.

We can point to cultural elements of Cambodia as the answer, but they all pale in comparison to the obvious - this is one of the least developed countries in the world. That some Cambodians will achieve despite this is great for them, but it doesn't mean the ones who don't are all lazy and entitled.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by Soi Dog » Wed Mar 18, 2015 7:13 am

I am surprised to hear AE86's take on this particular issue, but at least his views on this are from his long-term, real-life experiences working with (i.e. employing) quite a few locals during his many years as a business owner in Cambodia. I can only assume the hiring pool he typically draws from is not a true representation of the general young Cambodian demographic. If people are not happy or content in his employ for very long, then those same people must have other, more attractive options for earning a living...even taking into consideration the higher wages AE86 reportedly pays.

I have a difficult time envisioning anyone quitting a low-stress, decent paying job (by AE86's description) over the trivial reasons and unrealistic expectations he says he has been confronted with, without those workers having some genuine cause or grievances. We all know there is no welfare nanny state in Cambodia for such lazy, unskilled, ungrateful workers to fall back on. I would think if poor people don't work in Cambodia then they don't eat, and no one would understand that more than the poor, rural Cambodians that AE86 says he typically hired.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by logos » Wed Mar 18, 2015 9:18 am

Soidog, have you even ever been in Cambodia at all except maybe as a short time tourist?

What Ae86 describes is the norm and not the exception as you falsely believe. It is a mindset where cheating at exams is also the norm and not the exception.

I'd say over 80% of the male population are useless, lazy, clueless morons. Actually 95% is probably closer to the mark. Young Samouth clearly is an exception. I know a few others who are a joy to work with and do very well. But the overall majority seems to be hopeless losers.

Local women tend to be keener as they do all the work from a younger age and thus know what working means. Or am I being subjective here?
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by AE86 » Wed Mar 18, 2015 9:45 am

@Soi Dog

That's what I would have thought as well, and how I thought when I came to Cambodia 4 years ago. That's changed completely since then.

However, I'll be the first to say that a few hundred people is a small representation of a multi million person population, so it's entirely possible that I have seen a batch of bad lemons. I was also not directly in charge of hiring either since my Khmer is less than good, so it was all handled by the in laws, who might be looking in rubbish bins (figuratively speaking) and finding rubbish workers.

I am not alone in my views with Khmer workers though. I am acquaintances with several factory owners/businessmen here too, and the opinion is roughly the same for everyone, which experience would include tens of thousands of workers that have been dealt with by "us". Workers (rural general labor) only show up when they want, when they feel like it, and will steal whatever they can get away with and demand you pay them more.

The opinion for a "typical Westerner" might be different who are often seen as cash cows and such, but it's not all smiles in the end in the "real world".
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by Samouth » Wed Mar 18, 2015 11:38 am

Thanks everyone for your comments. I don't know how to respond. :?
បើសិនធ្វើចេះ ចេះឲ្យគេកោត បើសិនធ្វើឆោត ឆោតឲ្យគេអាណិត។

If you know a lot, know enough to make them respect you, if you are stupid, be stupid enough so they can pity you.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by taabarang » Wed Mar 18, 2015 3:20 pm

"one big difference is that young Khmer are extremely risk averse." Well not when they drive their motos in Kampong Cham or along national highway 7.
As my old Cajun bait seller used to say, "I opes you luck.
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Re: The West gives so much opportunities for their youths

Post by Sir_Quality_U_Feel » Thu Mar 26, 2015 9:13 pm

Cowshed Cowboy wrote:
Samouth wrote: i learned that most of them are working as intern at some of the big international organisations such as UN, UNDP and USAID. They do not get any salary or allowance from those organisations, but from their government. This is such a great opportunity to be able to work in the foreign countries and to experience different kinds of lifestyle.

PS: My government (The Kingdom of Wonder) will never be able to give me such chance.
I do think they are fortunate to experience that at a young age and hopefully it opens up their eyes and they learn and benefit from the opportunity. It's easy to take a good education system for granted coming from the West and I do feel fortunate seeing the situation in some countries where I've worked. Personally It took me a lot of years of hard work and planning and a bit of luck to realise my ambition to work overseas. But they say you make your own luck through hard work.

What I would say Samouth is that it's not all a bed of roses in the West, youth unemployment is extremely high in some European countries. Spain for example has 55% youth unemployment and half of all under 30's still live with their parents. You are seeing the fortunate few and not the typical majority.
Also Samouth, I see and hear a lot of Khmers in their youth or young adults assume that the cultures of the West are all the same. There is a big difference between being from Europe vs Australia vs North American. Etc
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