James Flanigan's column repeats two widely accepted "facts."
The first: "The U.S. economy created more than 2 million jobs a year in the 1980s." But most of these jobs were in the minimum-wage category, with laid-off Ph.Ds and middle managers working at fast-food franchises.
The second: ". . . a lot of that growth appears to be for computer systems analysts and programmers." But the growth is seen as a result of the perceived shortage of qualified people, regardless of the supply of capable people. The prevailing view among the majority of "mismanagers" is that qualified means having actual work experience (not classroom training) with exactly the same model computer, exactly the same computer language and exactly the same area of business application.
These myopic managers would leave a position unfilled (hence a demand/shortage, implying growth) rather than train an available (unemployed) capable person in whatever item is missing from their laundry list of job qualifications.