The OWS crowd, although a motley group of malcontents, does make one thing clear, the high cost of higher education is not worth the price based on the current job market. They say, like the homeowners, that they are underwater with their college loans. The OWS protestors say that what they owe on their college loans far exceeds what they are able to earn in the marketplace.
Doesn’t this sound familiar? People are given government guarenteed loans to attend college not based on their ability to pay but in order to subsidize the cost of that education. The only way these colleges can continue to charge more and more each year for their education is because the government makes it too easy for the student to get the money to attend. If colleges had to prove VALUE for their educational dollars in a real world scenario, where the cost of tuition was based on the actual value attained by graduating from the college and the marketable skills produced we would see a far more equitable price structure. But since colleges do not have to justify their high tuition costs because the government guarentees they get paid regardless of the situation of the student, these same colleges will continue to bilk the taxpayer out of more and more money.
The future of higher education is up in the air
“One of the oldest economic maxims, ‘if you subsidize something, you get more of it’ has created the next trillion dollar-plus bubble for which American taxpayers will be on the hook. The National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education discovered that published college tuition and fees increased 439 percent from 1982 to 2007, while median family income rose 147 percent. What is driving those costs? The idea that every high school graduate should attend college, and that government — meaning taxpayers — will guarantee loans made to those students. … [A]s college tuition costs increase, the government makes more funding available to students to pay for them. The more funding available — guaranteed by the taxpayers, so that colleges never face the possibility of a loan default — the more they can raise their tuition costs without ever having to worry about getting stiffed. … If college tuition, aided and abetted by government subsidies, continues to almost triple relative to family income, at some point the amount of debt incurred to obtain a college degree will surpass the additional income one may derive from it. Considering that any attempt to reign in government’s role in facilitating these runaway costs is inevitably characterized as ‘depriving needy students of critically needed funds,’ the trend is likely to continue. Or at least it will until the bubble pops, exactly like the government-abetted housing bubble did. Are Americans ready for another trillion dollar bailout precipitated by irresponsible government?” –columnist Arnold Ahlert