Wednesday, April 13, 2011

yet another casualty

You know going back and forth with a few people about this education bubble issue, many thoughts occur to me, but none more important than this: education cannot survive on what I am horrified to find is the generally assumed model, that it exists for the purpose of increasing earning potential. To see an education, college or otherwise, as merely a way to increase the amount of money you make is a terrible corruption and fundamentally unsustainable. Education was never intended that way, and it cannot succeed on those grounds.

It never ceases to amaze and dismay me. This totalizing vision of mankind as homo economus, where absolutely every element of human life is reduced to the exchange of currency and resources, has vast, negative consequences. People see them every day, and yet nobody is willing to walk back from the path we're on.

40 comments:

sheenyglass said...

There is a role for both economic and moral (for lack of a better term)aspects of education. however, once you charge students money for education you have an obligation to provide their money's worth. In a society where money is necessary for life, anything which aspires to engage in soulcraft must address the ability to earn money in that society.


In a society, like ours, where money is required, and where, consequently, we must spend the greater part of our lives working in order to earn it, then to refuse to allow non-vocational education to be a legitimate avenue towards increased earnings will effectively turn it into a hybrid between trade school for academics and a finishing school for dilettanttes.

Andy said...

I'd say vocational training, which essentially is what a university education is about these days, can most certainly survive for the purpose of increasing earning potential. In fact, I'd say that without the enticement of joining a higher income bracket, many young people would miss out on the eye-opening educational experiences that do, from time to time, occur in college classrooms.

You say education (I assume you mean the institutions which provided it) was never intended primarily to increase one's earning power. This is true. Education was once solely a privilege reserved for the aristocratic, the well-bred, and so on. They received such education as pass-time, spiritual improvement or however you want to classify learning without economic utility.

They could do this precisely because they were wealthy, secure in their social status, and had time on their hands. This description does not fit the majority of Americans today.

It also strikes me that as college attendance rates have increased, the focus on humanities and other non-practical studies has declined markedly. Like it or not, those with a bent for the esoteric must go to grad. school.

eliaisquire.com said...

Education always had something to do with security though, no? The security of entering the church or the state or the academy itself?

Real question, not rhetorical or counter-argumentative. This is not an issue I've thought much about in its own terms.

Michael said...

This is essential, and I agree with it totally. it's not wrong for people to look to education to give them a better foothold in the remorseless struggle for survival and basic comforts that is existence. But the fact that people look to it for that does not make that its essential function.

That being said, since you have comments off on the next post - you have Twitter all wrong. Not that you shouldn't hate it; I'd expect you to. It's just that you make a number of false statements about it to explain your hatred. That's neither here nor there; just thought I'd mention it.

Michael said...

sheenyglass - No.

"You" do not have an obligation to "provide people their money's worth." You have an obligation to provide for them exactly what you said your institution is in the business of providing. You have an obligation to carry out your mission with respect to your student-customers as it was described in your charter and other core purpose documents as they existed at the time you accepted their tuition. That's your obligation. it was their choice whether the mission described there was something they wanted them or their children to be committed to.

sheenyglass said...

@michael:

To be clear giving students their "money's worth" does not mean a contractual obligation to ensure a good salary. That was not the point I intended to convey.

When I was applying to college, every liberal arts school I visited (and the one I attended) sold themselves from this economic perspective - the usual tagline being "employers like student's who can read and write." I suspect the culture that leads schools to feel that they must make that argument to prospective students is part of what Freddie is criticizing. (Sidenote: Upon further reflection I think I misread Freddie as being an absolutist and saying schools should never worry about conveying an economic benefit when it appears he was criticizing the idea that schools should only convey an economic benefit. Sorry!)

My opinion is that in a capitalistic society in which we need to earn money to live, for educational institutions to be relevant to the population at large, they need to address the ability of their graduates to earn a living.

I think the tone of my original post came off as more hostile towards the idea of education which does not serve homo economicus than I intended. I think education is inherently good regardless of its economic benefit. But I think that if a school charges a tuition fee, it needs to have an economic benefit in order to allow access to education by society at large.

sheenyglass said...

@michael:

To be clear giving students their "money's worth" does not mean a contractual obligation to ensure a good salary. That was not the point I intended to convey.

When I was applying to college, every liberal arts school I visited (and the one I attended) sold themselves from this economic perspective - the usual tagline being "employers like student's who can read and write." I suspect the culture that leads schools to feel that they must make that argument to prospective students is part of what Freddie is criticizing. (As a sidenote, I may have read Freddie as being more absolutist in rejecting economic concerns in education than he actually is. Sorry!)

My opinion is that in a capitalistic society in which we need to earn money to live, for educational institutions to be relevant to the population at large, they need to address the ability of their graduates to earn a living.

I think the tone of my original post came of as more hostile towards the idea of education which does not serve homo economicus than I intended. I believe that education is good in and of itself, but that if schools are going to charge a tuition fee then they must attempt to provide a comparable economic benefit if education will be acessible to all.

Bob said...

It might be better if colleges expressly rejected the economic model and just said "Come here to learn and grow as a person." There's nothing wrong with that.

Of course, if prospective students didn't proceed from the economic model, most would consider college a luxury and lower priority than many other uses of their money. How many people would spend a few years and over $100,000 if they truly didn't take into account any economic return?? I rather like the "learn for the sake of learning and personal growth" concept, but it is a luxury and I'm not sure how much I would have spent on it at that age. Or today, for that matter.

Anonymous said...

Bob and others have it right. If education is not primarily (not solely) for financial return, then it is a luxury for only the rich. Very few can lay out $100k to better themselves, become well-rounded, and be more aware of the world they live in without some hope of financial return.

Anonymous said...

The fact that anyone would state that its silly to go to college for further education to receive a better salary is a complete idiot! I refuse to pay for futher education if im not going to receive a higher compensation! College is way too expensive and I think if you wish to receive further education then it should just be provided for you, how you wish to apply your education is each individuals responsibility.

Ilya K. said...

IMO, the demand from education results from employers' demands for those degrees. Without the proper degree, an individual is left between the slim possibility of creating his or her own business without a degree (Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Michael Dell, and to a lesser extent, Sergei Brin and Larry Page), or just getting nothing.

In my opinion, so long as universities' student bodies get filled by individuals seeking the degree so as to obtain a position which requires a degree, then they have an obligation to fulfill those demands.

The idea of a secondary education being a soul-searching pastime to enlighten yourself about the world is long past. Though I suppose it can become this again if it would be legislated to be illegal to discriminate applicants based on their educational background.

Scott said...

Higher education is too expensive indeed. And I have to agree with L'Hote that if the sole purpose of education is to make more money, then education itself becomes corrupted. For the sake of the public good, people must be able to think about things besides earning a bigger paycheck.

One solution to this mess is to drastically cut the student loan money and force the Universities to lower their cost structures. Such measures could include cutting athletics, reducing administrative staff and salaries, selling under-utilized buildings and putting a halt to any new construction. There is just way too much money spent in education that isn't going to the classroom.

The other problem that must be tackled is the academic inflation that is rampant in the Government bureaucracy and Corporate America. There are way too many entry level jobs requiring a masters degree today that only required a bachelors degree ten years ago.

Joe S. said...

BUBBLE? CONSIDER:
I once witnessed a 20-something recent college grad call up a cable financial advice show. The young woman asked advice about the $100,000-plus debt she incurred while pursuing her B.A. in Broadcasting.

Of course, since graduating she had yet to find a paying job in her chosen field and it was unlikely she would ever find enough work as an on-air broadcaster to pay off her student loan.

So the question is this: Why do "enlightened" Universities sell (er, confer) such worthless credentials on young people and charge them so much? If going to college was about more than "making money", why do these institutions enrich themselves in the most ruthless, naked form of exploitation capitalism that price gouges students (and taxpayers)?

Unsustainable indeed!

Angel-Clara said...

That a University education should not be seen merely as a way to earn more money in your lifetime,I agree. However, a college degree is supposed to stimulate creativity, ingenuity and curiosity. Seeing it as an "expensive bubble" is demonstrating narrowness of mind (specially easy if your a millionaire). A good solid college education is designed to create a real thirst for knowledge, not just the "how" of things, but the "why". Whether your field is that of Molecular Biology and Genetics, as mine is, or the humanities or the business fields, the desire to understand and pursue the "why" in your field is the fulfillment of a real college education.

Anonymous said...

The educational systems are moving in a wrong direction, I think, and Democracy is no longer needed to have the entire country privatized and is detrimental to the process, therefore part of the reason for being more educated is to be able to sell yourself on the open market, otherwise known as market transaction neoliberalism, but the Rethugnuts want neoliberalism on steroids. They want the corporations and the wealthy in charge of all of life. "Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism, because it is the merger of the corporations and the state." by Benito Mussolini

Democracy is counterproductive to the market transaction neoliberalism that the right wing wants, where coporations, countries, individuals, cities, states, all human interactions and human actions are relegated to a market transaction, tracked more and more by smaller and smaller increments of time. For an excellent view of liberalism, neoliberalism, and globalism. http://web.inter.nl.net/users/Paul.Treanor/neoliberalism.html

Neoliberal systems have been in place for the last 40 years, however limited to the economic interests, but it is increasingly taking over all aspects of life, not just economics. The Netherlands are considering a law that would ban poor people from the cities in order to attract more corporations.
Education is becoming more and more a system in which everything is measured and the measurements are made simply due to the data crunching abilities brought on by computers. In the guise of efficiency, timesaving, or teacher abilities evaluations based on students perceived abilities as measured by rote tests. Measures are being made and done simply because they can be. Ever more smaller increments of time of one's activities are being measured in order to judge just how productive one is at their work and then, of course, comparisons are made relative to fellow workers and employer inspired self justifications for performance on the job and for even having a job. This is neoliberalism on steroids. Measuring just because you can.

nash984954 said...

The educational systems are moving in a wrong direction, I think, and Democracy is no longer needed to have the entire country privatized and is detrimental to the process, therefore part of the reason for being more educated is to be able to sell yourself on the open market, otherwise known as market transaction neoliberalism, but the Rethugnuts want neoliberalism on steroids. They want the corporations and the wealthy in charge of all of life. "Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism, because it is the merger of the corporations and the state." by Benito Mussolini

Democracy is counterproductive to the market transaction neoliberalism that the right wing wants, where coporations, countries, individuals, cities, states, all human interactions and human actions are relegated to a market transaction, tracked more and more by smaller and smaller increments of time. For an excellent view of liberalism, neoliberalism, and globalism. http://web.inter.nl.net/users/Paul.Treanor/neoliberalism.html

Neoliberal systems have been in place for the last 40 years, however limited to the economic interests, but it is increasingly taking over all aspects of life, not just economics. The Netherlands are considering a law that would ban poor people from the cities in order to attract more corporations.
Education is becoming more and more a system in which everything is measured and the measurements are made simply due to the data crunching abilities brought on by computers. In the guise of efficiency, timesaving, or teacher abilities evaluations based on students perceived abilities as measured by rote tests. Measures are being made and done simply because they can be. Ever more smaller increments of time of one's activities are being measured in order to judge just how productive one is at their work and then, of course, comparisons are made relative to fellow workers and employer inspired self justifications for performance on the job and for even having a job. This is neoliberalism on steroids. Measuring just because you can. I'm new here, sorry if I mess up.

Anonymous said...

Our schools today fail in the one basic requirement of a democracy: a citizenry able to understand why a government is needed, what it should do and how it should be financed. So instead we have a battle of ideologies. Both sides state their beliefs as if they were facts to be unquestioned, even when they can be obviously proven wrong. And there are too many people who willingly go along.

Matt Sylvestre said...

The idea that education is all about self development and exploration was perhaps true in the 60's and 70's when college costs were affordable for the middle class. If colleges today truly believed in this approach, the cost (and perhaps ancillary services) would not be what they are. The cost of a college education demonstrates that it is simple supply/ demand market forces at work, and that colleges are simply charging these exorbitant sums because they can while at the same time, their professors are often railing against the commercial market forces that enable their soft tenured lives... Hypocrits.

Edwin said...

My soon to be ex wife has no degree and has been able to make more money than alot of people I know. Maybe it is because she kisses butt better. I dunno . Iwent to ITT in 94 and I feel that I should have went to a 4yr school for electronics. It helped but not to the degree I thought it would

blaire said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
nash984954 said...

blaire, this is so not right, what your family is going through. It is just impossible to get ahead in this day and age. Something is definitely broken. I think it has a lot to do with greed and self entitlement by the wealthy and corporations who want to privatize everything, including education in order to reap the benefits of for profit neoliberalism free market transactions in which all human activities are competition matches for independent gain and advantage. Democracy has no place in this system. It is neoliberalism on steroids, this free market transaction neoliberalism.
I hope things get better for you, I really do.

Miko Vakilla said...

In 2004 I was at the University of Iowa State. In a Technical Writing class, this point of discussion came up. The professor thought it was ridiculous that people would go to college just to increase their earning potential. The professor asked for anyone to raise their hand if they had any other reason to be in the class other than future earning potential. Not one hand out of 45 people was raised.

Anonymous said...

Consider this: Thirty years ago, when I started college, universities and colleges boasted was that if you got a college degree you would make a million dollars more in your lifetime than you would if you did not have a degree.

I recently saw an internet advertisement that made the same claim touting that if a person went to college they would earn a million dollars more than the average person would without one. If the educational system is so beneficial, shouldn't today's graduates be able to make more than I was promised thirty years ago? I mean a million dollars now is worth less than a million dollars back then. Yet the universities and colleges charge more while providing less promising rewards. The reason is simple.

College education has been devalued because so many people have college degrees. It is almost becoming a pre-requisite, like a High School diploma became years ago. So many places today expect a person to have college degrees for what HS graduates are well qualified to do.

Colleges and universities are and always will be businesses. They need students to function. That is the bottom line, it is a matter of feeding the machine that is higher education.

Brad said...

I'm sorry but college is nothing more than a long summer camp anymore. Really look at it, expect for the small colleges, the focus is on sports and enrollment, both driving huge revenues. Most kids go for the social acppectance of it and the party. Few ever put serious thought into what they want to do with their life. The high schools enforce this. "if you don't go to college you're worthless, or those people that tell you student debt is good debt." I have watched plently of wanna be doctors walk down that road. It has become big business like any other and now we have the online and office park college scams to boot. Not to mention the schools do not teach the simple stuff we have to deal with everyday.

My thought is you work a few years after school, find out what you want to do and see if you need "training/education" to get there.

College should not be for teens and 20 somethings, it's for 30 years olds that respect it.

Anonymous said...

Charge foreigners more money then out of state students and in state students. and limit them to so many spots.They are being subsidized by their governments so they will come back to their countries, and in some situations being subsidized by our own tax payer money! The colleges are greedy taking in the highest bidders. We need to to take care of our own citizens. Wake up America!

Anonymous said...

What happened to the argument that you had to have a Bachelors just to compete? That came after the lie of a college graduate makes a million dollars more in a lifetime. Turns out that was a completely biased statement. Instead of college deans addressing the need of industry and producing useful ready to work graduates they give us incompetent not even entry level ready applicants. Where else can you fail at your job and actually charge more for your product? I'll tell you where, in college!

nash984954 said...

There are some important topics from The Nation magazine that some may find interesting.
There are a couple of articles in The Nation in the book review section of the April 25, 2011 issue called Swans and Zombies. The books being reviewed are Zombie Economics, How Dead Ideas Still Walk Among Us, by John Quiggin and The Crisis of Neoliberalism, by French economists Gérard Duménil and Dominique Lévy.
Neoliberalism at its worst, culminating in the 2008 meltdown. Neoliberalism is a privatization for profit scheme to rid society of its pesky ideas that not everything should have as goal a for profit system, whereas, government services that do not have a for profit bottom line, but instead whose goal is service to the public, the people, neoliberalism caters to the powerful few; dreams of the Republicans and some turncoat Democrats is neoliberalism on steroids and it does not need Democracy, indeed Democracy is to be the sacrificial lamb.

And in another issue of The Nation, the May 23, 2011, in the Books & Arts section, there is an exposé, called Faulty Towers, by William Deresiewicz, to argue, I think, the direct effects of Neoliberalism on higher education. The usage of undergrads to teach classes and the devaluing of faculty, and using part-timers instead, will surely hurt the quality of higher education, in the long run.

Fletcher said...

This entire exchange begs the question of why we keep dancing around the main issue. Institutions of higher education in this country have become little more than leftist indoctrination mills widely used as an excuse to delay adulthood. Anti-American, anti-capitalist, anti-male, anti-white. To wit, the Army recently downgraded drastically the amount of promotion points it will grant to soldiers with degrees. As a Reservist I can tell you this has been a long time in the making. College graduates are not required to develop any problem-solving acumen, let alone leadership traits that are the prerequisites of functioning at a meaningful level in this country.

The real question is why taxpayers are required to underwrite this scam. Should they expect a return other than alienated, dysfunctional young people who come back to live their basements? Should taxpayers be required to finance these big State institutions who nurture not a 'thousand Eichmanns' but a thousand Ward Churchills? Do we really have to pay for the undermining of our democratic institutions? God what a mess.

nash984954 said...

Fletcher, are you serious? Why is it then that for the last forty years there has been a shift to the right in this country. That shift began in the '70's when the funding of the conservative propaganda machine was born. The Heritage Foundation, the Cato Institute, and many, many more funded by the Koch/John Birchers that have had a desultorous effect on the debate in this country. The Religious Right and the Moral Majority have also shifted the Right wing further to the right by co-opting the Republican Party. There have been three Democratic Presidents, and except for Carter the other two Democrats were corporate Democrats so therefore they voted for the conservative agenda. Since 1970 there have been 32 years of the last 39 who pushed a conservative agenda. And then add to that the FOX noise propaganda machine that joined the fray in the late nineties, which is nothing more than a right wing Republican shill. If there is a leftie influence going on you would think there would be more of a shift to the left in society, but if its true they are having very little effect. If students are being taught by the lefties, they are having no influence. So, it seems you think there is a conspiracy against the white privilege that you have enjoyed for so long. And it is anti- American, and all that other nonsense you spewed. Your level of ignorance is astounding.

GadgetGuy said...

Where do you get the idea that there has been a shift to the right? The right promotes personal responsibility, limited federal government, and conformity to the Constitution. Since the 60's there has been tremendous expansion of the Federal government, a growth of "entitlements" (that NO ONE is actually entitled to!) and an ever more immoral inequality in the tax structures, as well as more and more disregarding of the Constitution. The country is now in an unrecoverable position because almost half of all households pay no federal income tax, yet the left keeps promising more and more payouts that it can't afford. People are too selfish to do the right thing and vote to increase the taxes on the huge percentage of the population that pays way less than its share of the taxes.Too many people want what they did not earn and are not entitled to, and feel no guilt over stealing the money from someone who DID earn it. The left will remain in power until the country collapses and society breaks down. The only sustainable system is one in which everyone pays the same percentage of tax, but people will NOT vote for that. Instead, a smaller and smaller percentage of people actually pay for everything. The national debt is $50,000 for every man, woman and child in the country, but most people pay no taxes, so it means each person who actually pays any taxes is held responsible for hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt!! Yet the left's appetite for spending is insatiable!

nash984954 said...

Gadget, Obviously you are a shill for FOX noise, Beck, Hannity, O'Reilly, the Heritage Foundation, the Cato Institue. Unfortunately, my first reponse was lost in cyber space. But the points you made come not from you, but from the conservative factfree echo chamber of the above mentioned members. Taxes are manmdated by the Constitution, it is not stealing. And everyone pays taxes, sales taxes, county taxes, road use taxes, and so on, so you are just plain wrong. The "entitlements" are there to address problems of the past policies. It was thought in the 19th and early 20th centuries, that the poor, disabled, homeless, the downtrodden who through no fault of their own, were in a bad way, was going to be cared for by the churches, or charites, or benevolent corporations, or benevolent rich folks. But it was tried and it failed, so gov't had to step in to address the problems of people dying in the street. So much of this talk about taking care of yourself didn't work. You have a very narrow view of people, your mind seems closed to anything outside the FOX noise echo chamber. People are just people trying to get by. There are no Democrats that want big gov't, or a tax and spend gov't. Those are lie from the echo chamber. You probably think the unemployed should noth ave unemployment compensation. If you truly believed in personal responsibility you would educate yourself more thoroughly. And not just spew conservatives=good, progressives=bad mantra. Grow up.

Anonymous said...

The discourse in this string has started to go political/media blah, blah, blah which is a non-productive dalliance in an otherwise important topic. The original premise for this discussion is to consider if today’s university education is a “trade school” commercial transaction and what if anything suffers from this conversion.
In my opinion… yes, the universities have become educational “whores” who dance to the tune of corporate hiring trends. Sad that. What would be wrong with just calling the collegiate experience for most attendees, trade school, and keep a separate educational system for teaching critical thinking, history and classics? We need as a culture to know where we have been in order to know where we are going. Do we for a minute think we can compete with China and India in rolling out robots with degrees ready to hit the market place? Any statistician would laugh at the probability.
The problem actually starts in the secondary school system which for some egalitarian reason assumes that since, in our society, all are equal all should be hashed together in an educational process better labeled “devil take the hindmost”. This model ill serves the least capable and the most capable simultaneously. Teachers are frustrated, gifted kids are bored and slower kids are baffled and overwhelmed. But that’s OK we can teach all of them to pass the “test” and keep funding flowing and then off to college with them.

nash984954 said...

Anonymous, you are correct, I apologize for being a party to the blah, blah, blah. Forgive me.

Anonymous said...

The mind is as limitless as the universe. To miss out on a college education in lieu of a $100,000 fellowship is, in my opinion, a terrible waste. Sure, one may come out very affluent and prosperous in this venture, however, I don't believe that they would know much about anything else.

Steven said...

I went to college for 2 years, paid for it myself by working, and realized this is not for me.

College is a waste of money if you think the sole purpose of it is to become rich. I know a few PHD's working at Starbucks, and believe me, their not rich.

The best thing I ever did, at least in my opinion, was join the service for a couple of years. I learned the mechanic trade for free, honed my technical skills through hard work, and today make a decent living.

I myself am not rich, never will be. But I think learning a technical skill, something you can fix or build, gives you the freedom to explore entrepenuership.

College in some ways teaches you to work for other people, a hands on technical skill I think teaches you something more personal, it gives you the ability to seek work under your own banner.

nash984954 said...

Steven,
I think you're right. I was college bound after high school, but the orphanage I was in could only provide so much after I had to leave from there at 18, and the scholarship I had won was rescinded due to financial hardship by the donor. So, I had to fend for myself basically. I worked at a paper mill for a half dozen years or so, and it dawned on me that at the mill that I would not be able to make the same salary if I fell out of favor there, and lost my job. So, I went back to school at a community college at age 31, and I felt ill equipped due to the 13 years that passed by, and I felt everyone was so much smarter than me, because I had not been in school for so long, but the fears were unfounded. The kids I was in school with were not as bright as I, or should I say, that the lapse in the lack of schooling was not as great a factor as I thought. I was intimidated, I guess, but it was just an unreasonable fear of what to expect in going back to school. I did't think I was dumb, just out of touch. What was in my favor was I did a lot of reading on the side and tried to stay informed even though I was not in an educational program. But as it went, I took all the electronic courses the college offered and got an AA Degree in Electronics Technology; it took almost 10 years, as I had to support myself and go to night classes, too. I got my first electronics job in Biomedical Electronics at a hospital. But strangely, I later applied for jobs, but they required more experience, but then when I had 9 years experience, the jobs I applied for, they said I was overqualified. Go figure.

Anonymous said...

nash984954; your mastery of progresive talking points (and all the attendant logical fallacies and cognitive dissonance) is astounding.

"The Nation"? "French enconomists"? Your comments are such a self-parody, I wonder if
you some kind of 'bot created by a righty to discredit progressive ideas.

Anonymous said...

I'm so sick of this higher-education-as-enrichment argument. It's a cop-out. The fact is that most people enroll in college with the goal of increasing their future income. The College Board is always sure to emphasize the increased earning power that -they claim- comes with a degree. This day's of 17th century prep schools, where the wealthy discuss Latin and learn to play the harp to 'enrich' themselves are long gone. People have bills to pay!

nash984954 said...

Anonymous, you said:

"nash984954; your mastery of progresive talking points (and all the attendant logical fallacies and cognitive dissonance) is astounding.

"The Nation"? "French enconomists"? Your comments are such a self-parody, I wonder if
you some kind of 'bot created by a righty to discredit progressive ideas"

What exactly are you referring to? I merely tried to pass on what I had read recently in the slight hopes of someone being interested in a different point of view. And why do you not see the Progressivism in the references I provided? And you only said something akin to, nanner nanner , but offered no refutation of what was said. You just made accusations but no counterpoints. By the Way, I'm not clever enough to do talking points, of which the whole concept came from conservatives, 'bots??? haven't a clue how to do that, but then why would I? I'm not trying to convince someone of nonsense. Oh, and I see how you comment as Anonymous, not as who you are, what are you trying to hide?

Anonymous said...

Yes it is appalling that the value of education be only viewed in terms of how much it will increase your earning potential. However (at least if you look at the USA situation) such a view is justified among other things by the fact that there is not much real learning and growing left in the process of getting a batchelor or higher degree. In order to get a degree you just go through an obstacle course, every day you put out the required work, your final grade is the algebraic sum of your output, your reasoning and logical ability don't matter, understanding of your subject matter is not really verified.