>the money in trades is in management, self-employment, and business ownership.
I know what you're saying, but a licensed plumber or electrician in Ontario can easily make 75k. It wont make him rich but it certainly isn't bad money.
>most trades workers never make it that far.
Stereotypes don't come out of nowhere. It's a fact that many tradesmen aren't that bright. If you're smart, that means less competition getting into management and ownership.
OP the biggest problem getting into trades is the apprenticeship. This idea that you can do a one year entry-level program at trades school and start making good money is horseshit. Contractors don't like to hire apprentices, and in a lot of ways the trades industry is a bit of a closed society, unless you have a father or an uncle etc who is a contractor you are going to have a very hard time getting a job, and you need those apprentice hours to become licensed. Once (and if) you get hired you will be doing all of the grunt work starting out, and they will pay you dog shit, but it's better than going to school imo.