Two words: Personal Responsibility
“We need every person possible to get plugged in and be able to be self-sufficient, functioning adults,” said Jane Zehnder-Merrell, Michigan project director of Kids Count.
Why: so they can pay taxes... pay Social Security into a system that will not be there for them and all other social 'welfare' programs.
Of course if their parents had said "you are working this summer instead of goofing off" some of the burden that is currently being placed on tax payers to just get these kids on their feet could be avoided.
But it's more important to be their friends instead of their parents..
Source: Number of state's idle teens increases - 06/03/04