By Xinhua writer Cao Kai
BEIJING, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- Once risk-takers, young Chinese graduates are now vying for public posts for the sake of stability as the economic slowdown has made job-seeking more difficult. An opening for a civil servant or sanitation worker can attract hundreds of applicants.
Nearly 10,000 graduates this month applied for 457 sanitation posts in the northeastern city of Harbin, including 307 vehicle drivers, 30 vehicle maintenance workers and 120 street cleaners. About one third of them were college graduates, including 29 with master's degrees.
Most applicants are attracted to the stable income and benefits that come with landing a job within a public service institution. It was reported that a man with a monthly salary of 14,000 yuan (2,226 U.S. dollars) wished to win the sanitation post with a much lower salary just to live a stable life.
It is a good deed if youngsters swarm into public institutions with the purpose of service for the public. If they just want to lead an easy life and enjoy the benefits of the system, it is pathetic for the whole society.
"Diving into the sea" of business, or "xiahai" in Chinese, became a fashion in the late 1980s as China's economy opened to the world. Millions of Chinese youngsters left stable public posts and jumped into private businesses to find development opportunities. It was a trend that contributed to China's robust economic growth.
A country will not thrive without the spirit of competition. There is no incentive for innovation and development if the young generation takes public posts as their lifelong pursuit.
Enterprises, not public institutions, are the main bodies of wealth creation. Obsession with power and sharing in wealth, instead of creating wealth, is worrisome for China's future development.
A recent straw poll of 50 young graduates in Beijing by a Xinhua reporter showed 62 percent of them hope to get a public post. Only 16 percent said they would prefer to get into private businesses.
A total of 1.12 million Chinese youngsters took the national civil-service examinations last weekend, 150,000 more than last year.
Talented youngsters, the future of a nation, are limited. A rational arrangement of talents in different industries is of crucial importance for China's progression.
Candidates with advanced knowledge should be put to use in creating wealth, which is the foundation of China's economic growth.
If escape from competition and dawdling away becomes the norm for Chinese elites, the country will lost its vitality.
On the other hand, more diversified career options for graduates will be a boon for society.