I'm sorry to say this is another tiresome idea that the program "black box" can do anything easily because some other game seems to do it.
While this game is so detailed in many aspects, it is severely lacking in the economic model. The major shortcoming is that Tropicans do no have savings. It is ridiculous that a doctor who has been earning tons of money for most of his life will suddenly have to live in a shack when he retires.
The first major mistake in reasoning: It would take a huge batch of coding to provide the units with the ability actually to plan ahead. They don't now; and it's evident because they don't become students unless there are vacant jobs which require education.
Parents should pay for their 13-year-old kids' livings when they're in high school (unless the parents can't afford it). A 29-year-old adult who decides to go a different direction in his life and take further education would likely have made sure he has enough savings to cater for himself during education, or otherwise he would likely have decided to work a few more years to save the money he needs.
Why should parents pay; the 13 year old is an adult in Tropico. Student is an adult job. Unfortunately, the game's documentation does not make clear that education and social class are synonymous - so going to school is not just getting an education.
Adding an option to build free housing specific for students and retirees will partially solve the problem - right row the player has to micro-manage ..., which is utterly frustrating. But even with this enhancement, the game will still be lacking. Tropicans do not feel like real inhabitants of Tropico, and the reason is that there is no economic flow between Tropico and the Tropicans. Money means money to the treasury, but it doesn't mean money to the Tropicans. The salary a Tropican earns each month doesn't belong to him/her; it just disappears. And when the Tropican goes to a pub or sports complex, he doesn't pay to be entertained; the money just comes out of nowhere and adds to the treasury.
The PI expansion added an Edict to pay Students and Retirees so the player can pay to avoid micro managing free housing - which was not required anyway. VictorS's perception of the economic flow of money ignores the concept of some things happening below the player's level of visibility. Instead he wants to micro manage the pocket change of every individual. If he were to think it through a bit more, he would decide that he want to have costs for food, health care, religion and education assessed to each individual. Not only would the coding bulk out of control, but also the gameplay choices would be overwhelming. The pay level of employed Tropicans is a denominator used for several functions and as a cash flow item only as a charge against the treasury and an overhead accumulator. The charges for rent and entertainment are subsumed recoveries from the amount of salaries paid - not money from nowhere. It's too bad he did not study the accounting figures given in the Almanac more carefully before deciding to rewrite the game.
Has anyone played Majesty ...? ...
Who cares? But by now people have played Tropico 2 - Pirate Cove. It keeps track of the pocket change of the pirates but not the captives. The pirates are paid irregular amounts at irregular times and have only two things on which to spend their money -- entertainment and "stash." "Stash" is not spendable savings. The concept just doesn't fit with the overall game concept of the original.
Back to Tropico - compared to all the details already in the game, an economic model with complexity similar to that of Majesty is really not hard to implement. IMO it is a major oversight to be omitted. With a better economic model that applies to both Tropico and the Tropicans consistently, this game would have been excellent, a true classic. But as it is now, it comes as a bit of disappointment.
It's too bad that another little red wagon was left out. What is sadder, VictorS couldn't play the game long enough or in depth enough to discover all the other micro management details which were left out. He could have complained bitterly about them also. The war game crowd complains incessantly about the lack of command & control -- and crew served weapons, tanks, etc. ad nausea. I'm surprised he didn't jump on the economic system's lack of charges for food and services. The major point is that they really are hard to implement.
I think that you will find many people agreeing with you on this. ...
The Edict in the PI expansion took care of micro managing Student and Retiree rents. It was a minor gameplay issue anyway. Otherwise, completely wrong. There are thousands of people happily playing two sequels which have no pocket change accounting. They are not complaining about this little red wagon.