Thursday, December 13, 2018

He thinks the federal government is a college student’s friend—an e-mail exchange

Really?  Your source?  Did you know the government and its own predatory loans, grants, scholarships, etc. is the main reason the bubble of student loans is bigger than the housing bubble of 2007?  When I entered Manchester College (private) in 1957, a college education was about $1,000 a year with tuition, fees, housing, food and transportation. My sophomore year at the University of Illinois (public) was about the same. 

If you use a calculator for 1957-58 dollars and convert to 2018 dollars, 60 years later, you’ll see what throwing money at colleges does to the costs.  College costs have soared far higher and at a faster rate than medical costs, even though medicine has gone through far greater changes and technological and pharmaceutical improvements. Our lives have been extended by the medical improvements.  A college education has been cheapened; a BA or BS is today not worth a lot except to go on to graduate school and leave with $70,000 in debt.  Colleges have made few changes except to shift most of the faculty to the left of center, add programs in “area studies,” remove Shakespeare and American history, and deny conservatives their right to a bias-free education. The more money government provides to students, the more the universities and colleges raise their tuition and fees. Funny how the “market” works, isn’t it?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, prices in 2018 are 772.10% higher than prices in 1958. The dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 3.68% per year during this period.  In other words, $1,000 in 1958 is equivalent in purchasing power to $8,721.04 in 2018, a difference of $7,721.04 over 60 years.

Do you know any college/university where a student can attend for $8,721 a year? All costs, not just tuition and fees. Administrative costs have soared as more and more non-faculty are added, especially in the huge departments of equality, diversity, disability that may have 50 or so employees (at OSU) as well as those assigned to the individual departments, courses are watered down or expanded so it now takes 5-6 years to finish rather than 4, young men and women are encouraged to remain adolescents longer and remain in parents’ care until late 20s, very odd courses are required for students, staff and faculty like “hate speech” or “appropriate non-sexist dating behavior” which chew up many hours that could be  useful for studying and which make the old “in loco parentis” of my era look like wild freedom.

No one can reverse this overbearing, interfering federal meddling in higher education except the Department of Education, and since even Republicans don’t like to give up power, I think not much will come of this except more money being thrown at the problem, and a bigger bureaucracy to make sure the tax payers get screwed again.

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