Today’s Robber Barons

It's a bull market for the 'education' industry, our kids left with the bill

Higher education in America has largely become a racket.

Academia has become a corrupt aristocracy that leeches off those it is meant to serve, as the cost of a liberal arts education grows ever higher and the quality of it descends further into farce.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that college tuition increased nearly 260 percent between 1980 and 2014.

In the last 45 years, the cost of an education at most private colleges in the United States has increased at a rate of roughly eight percent per year — that’s five percent higher than the annual rate of inflation.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the price of college tuition increased nearly 260 percent between 1980 and 2014. The average increase in the cost of all consumer items during that time was only 120 percent.

These increases have been driven in part by a fundamental change in attitude among the administrators and trustees who run colleges and universities across the country.

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Non-profit institutions of higher learning should always have the primary goal of providing a quality education, but many universities have prioritized the nurturing of their endowments over nurturing an environment of learning.

Some universities have billions. Princeton’s endowment is over $22 billion; Yale’s is over $25.5 billion. Harvard’s is over $37 billion.

Related: To Get into College, Be an Activist

But the main factor in this transformation of universities into veritable corporations — and a central factor in the ever-rising cost of tuition — is that age-old toxic combination of liberalism and government.

For decades, liberals have pushed the notion that everyone needs a classical liberal arts education to succeed in life, dramatically increasing the number of students enrolled in colleges and universities.

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Abby Johnson, in a piece in Business Insider, says “the World Bank reports tertiary school enrollment as a percentage of the total population of students who graduated within the last five years. In 1980, the U.S. enrollment was 53 percent and in 2012 it was 94 percent.”

This has not only lowered the intrinsic value of a graduate degree, but also created a thriving industry of student loans and student debt. Universities rely on a steady stream of student loan cash from the government, and they continue to jack up annual tuition for students who can afford to pay it to cover the rest of the costs of those who cannot.

The punchline here is that while this transformation of the higher education system was ostensibly done in the name of offering a classical liberal arts education to all, students today receive anything but.

Far from exposing students to academic inquiry and dissenting opinions in a quest to further understanding of fundamental truths about the human condition — the true purpose of a classical liberal arts education — universities actively suppress those truths. In effect, they’ve become progressive re-education camps and a fertile breeding ground for extreme left wing ideology.

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In the last week alone, it was reported that Cal State Los Angeles is taking “safe spaces” to their logical extreme and offering black students their own housing. The University of Iowa is adding a social justice program to its list of bachelor degrees, and students at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, will be distributing tampons throughout the men’s bathrooms.

Reports Newsweek, this “campaign highlights an often ignored fact: Not all people who menstruate are women. ‘We wanted to set a tone of trans-inclusivity and not forget that they’re an important part of the population,'” [the campaign coordinator] said.

That’s the higher “education” that $65,000 buys a young person in America today.

The “intellectuals” are laughing from their ivory towers.

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