"Job security is very important.
Without it your job is at risk." This was the warning on the front of the Wall Street Journal on the morning of the 10th February 1979. Little did its writers realise that America was about to experience her most significant recession in almost two years.
Economists were completely unaware of the forthcoming tradgedy, and left both metaphorically and literally with their trousers down.
Marx believed that the educational establishment existed to perpetuate the ideology of the bourgeoise ruling class. Durkheim had the opposing view, that in fact the education system served only as a method of selecting the most able minds for the most important jobs and hence was an essential tool for the success of society.
Perhaps the only sociologist ever to fully appreciate the ramifications of what was happening to the USA at that important time was Weber, the interactionalist and interperativist sociologist.
The recession was in fact brought about by mass hysteria in consumer spending, and the collapse of three of the major international banks at that time. Nobody could have predicted that in just ten short years, the American economy would once again be the envy of the developed world. Measures are now in place to ensure that no such economic catastrophe occurs again, but in a world like this, certainty comes at a cost.
References: "How working class kids get working class jobs": a study by Stanworth and Spender (1986).
"The fall and rise of the American Economy": Paul Sharp (1984)