PhD: reader comments 
I started a PhD in 1999 in bioengineering and completed it in 2003. I started with the intention of writing up a Masters but following the usual cajoling I ended up registering for the PhD. After graduation, I hung about the lab for 3 years doing post-docs before finding a job in production engineering at the ripe old age of 29.
I was lucky to get out when I did. The great recession happened a few years later and I eventually lost my job but the skills gained meant that I am now able to acquire jobs and interviews at will, albeit, at associate degree/degree level. The PhD and post-docs turned out to be completely worthless. The fact I wasn’t earning while doing the PhD represented a financial loss which can never be recovered.
The good news is that today, I have purchased a 4 bed detached house, am married and have two children. I work 40 to 45 hours a week. It is real work with much of it taking place in dangerous, harsh, industrial environments but I love it!
The PhD system is one of the most exploitative systems I have ever encountered. I would not encourage any young person to travel down a path which is clearly one giant ponzi scheme. A three or four year stint in University or a modern apprenticeship is enough to develop the skill set you acquire to be a productive and financially solvent member of society.
As for the people who continue to sell this ponzi scheme to the young and naive, your day of reckoning will come.