Poll

Which is better?

Completely Subsidized Community College (100% Govt Funded, CC Only)
1 (2.9%)
Completely Subsidized College and University  (100% Govt Funded, ALL Higher Ed)
9 (26.5%)
Completely Unsubsidized College  (0% Govt Funded)
9 (26.5%)
Our current mix of in between  (0-100% Govt Funded, Variable)
11 (32.4%)
Irrelevant; Higher Ed is moving in a different direction on it's own (E.g. Coursera, MIT Open Courseware, Khan Academy Etc)
4 (11.8%)
Other
0 (0%)

Total Members Voted: 32

Author Topic: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?  (Read 6347 times)

Future Lazy

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Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« on: January 09, 2015, 09:18:23 AM »
For Reference: http://www.npr.org/blogs/ed/2015/01/09/375894591/obama-in-tennessee-to-promote-free-community-college

For a long time, I've stayed over in the Democratic camp and kept away from the Libertarian camp based mostly on typical Libertarian stance of "Zero Education Funding" (along with zero everything else funding, ofc). I feel that education funding was necessary due to the extreme expenses of college, even community college, and that without it, many of my peers would not be succeeding. The more I learn, the more I think it's time to change my tune.

Over the past year or so, I have followed the scandals surrounding for profit colleges (especially of the online variety), and also taken note of the outrage against California's raise in tuition, etc. I've learned a lot more about why college prices are so inflated, and it continues to become clear that some of the culprit is government funding. The logic follows that if the federal/state government removes it's funding, that the prices of tuition will drop to meet what the market will bear. Or, instead students could acquire more (and worse) private education loans, digging deeper holes, even in our current economy of "restricted lending" (whatever that means...). Refer to above article for further arguments for and against.

I feel that a lot of people here are fiscally conservative (less spending whenever possible), but socially liberal (support the community) - which is how I identify, typically - and IMO the issue of college funding becomes a big tangled mess...

Opinions? Thoughts? Ideas? Arguments? Alternate solutions?

What would you do? Increase, decrease, remove all together, or max out funding for higher education? Why?

projekt

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2015, 10:58:24 AM »
You're leaving out very important options. For example, government funded public universities with reasonable tuition rates would be the best option in my mind. Getting rid of the government guarantees on student loans would also help, as well as the provision that they cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. That would make student loans harder to get and cause tuition at private and for profit schools to drop.

Tuition should be set at a level where someone could conceivably work part time and pay for their tuition and room and board at some reasonable pay rate, like $9/hr, with summer work filling in the gaps. Tuition (and room & board) have gotten expensive enough that this is not reasonable. For comparison, in the 60s fees at UC Berkeley were less than $500/year. Other costs were less than $2,000/year. The question of whether a student could afford school was really whether they could afford to live on savings and part-time work. Now, the cost of attendance is over $32,000/year. Even adjusting for inflation using pessimistic assumptions ($2500/year in 1960) you have a significantly higher cost of attendance now. I think most college students could afford to go to school on a $16,000/year total if they worked during the summers and had 15 hours/week during the year. Could you make $6500 painting houses during the summer, and $10,000 waiting tables during the year? Probably. But doubling those amounts would be hard, and the only other answer is debt.

One problem is that the university dorms and dining halls have changed from a place that subsidizes students to a profit center. Why shouldn't there be an inexpensive no-frills dorm? Why is a meal plan costing $8/meal?

So, yeah, I agree with you that the problem is government support of tuition payments. I think that the government needs to switch to strict caps on loans, and support for education should be in cash grants to the universities and not tied to tuition. Tuition needs to be strictly capped for public schools. And creative solutions to the room and board problem need to be addressed.

Pigeon

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2015, 11:08:04 AM »
I would make student loan no harder to discharge in bankruptcy than other consumer debt, which would make loans a bit harder to get, and lenders more selective about where they give loans.

In many cases, states have defunded state run colleges and universities considerably.  The state institution where I work now gets less than 20% of its funding from the state (yet we still have to deal with all the red tape state funding entails).  The net result has certainly not been tuition decreases.

From what I see, much of what drives tuition increases are consumer demands.  Students want to go to schools where everything is available 24/7, with the shiniest technology, the most services, the nicest facilities.  Listening to admissions tours, there aren't many questions from students or parents about class size, adjunct faculty, grad students teaching classes, academic rigor, research opportunities or anything else that really matters.  There are lots of questions about food choices and in-dorm workout facilities.

I'm not sure who should be responsible, but I do think high school kids and their parents should be given plenty of solid information about the costs of colleges and what to look for.  I'm the parent of a high school student going to college next year, so this is on my mind a lot.  Our guidance department ran a couple of good programs about college finance, but it was voluntary, and I'm not sure how many parents and students took the information to heart.  It amazes me how few of my kid's friends parents knew, for example, that many schools post 6 (not 4) year graduation rates, and you have to pay attention to that.  I'm also always surprised that many folks think that taking out many thousands of dollars for an expensive mid-tier private college without a plan for the future is a great idea.

Distshore

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2015, 11:16:01 AM »
Those are not the only options, and in fact I don't like any of them so I didn't vote.

The Australian model works very well (people complain, but it's a million times better for both society and students than the subsidized "free-market" model in the US), where students can achieve government-subsidized placements, and pay HECS (a tiered flat rate per year).  Fees are regulated, so you will pay the same for a BA at University X as University Y.  If the degree at University X is more popular, then the cut-off (ie GPA) to get in will be a bit higher than at University Y because of the increased demand.  It eliminates the ability of students' families to buy a prestigious degree and puts the burden back on the student's grades.

The student contribution amount can either be paid upfront, at any time voluntarily, or deferred until the student starts earning a wage.  Interest is capped.  The fee burden is reasonable relative to income. 

I believe that solving the higher education problem is best addressed by regulation of the higher education sector.  Somewhat like healthcare, the higher ed. market characteristics do not lend themselves to efficient functioning as a free market, due to asymmetrical information flow, the time-lag disconnect between purchase and outcome, and the myriad confounding factors that affect outcome.  In inefficient markets, uncaptured regulation is necessary to ensure an equitable outcome between buyer and seller.

Let the debates begin!

TerriM

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2015, 11:18:30 AM »
It's a known fact that you will value something more if you pay for it--even a little.  I don't think people should walk out with unbearable loans, but I would not want to see free tuition. 

Ask anyone who does a "free" seminar how many people who RSVP actually show up.  Maybe 20-30%.  It could be "sold out, please tell us if you're not coming, we have a long waiting list", and *still* 20-30% show up.  If people pay for their tickets, more like 80-90%.    Even if you make someone put a deposit down which will be 100% returned at the end of the seminar, you're more likely to get them to do you the courtesy of canceling than not communicating at all.

seattlecyclone

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2015, 11:28:19 AM »
I do think the federal funding and financing structures have created some perverse incentives in higher education. Historically a college education has paid off over a lifetime compared to a high school diploma, so even with inflated prices many students have found the cost to be worth it even if they had to borrow money to pay for it. I think we may be at a tipping point where the cost of tuition has gone up high enough that many students won't make their money back with higher salaries that college degrees can buy. If loans were less available, and students had to pay with money they had on hand or could earn during the school year, that would change a lot.

I have wondered lately where all this tuition money is even going in the first place. I read from time to time about colleges switching away from tenure-track faculty to part-time instructors who earn minimum wage (or less!) after considering the amount of time they spend grading outside of class. With teachers getting paid less and students paying more, someone is earning a lot of money here.

Kwill

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2015, 11:38:00 AM »
I don't know which is better. I wonder if it might be better to really strengthen K-12 education rather than stretching state and federal budgets even thinner to add years.

In the current US system, very good students can generally go to college for free or get a big discount if they aren't too picky about where they go, especially if there is family financial need. There are already subsidized loans and lower cost community college or state schools available. For some students, extra subsidies might work out well, but I wouldn't want young people to feel forced to spend more time in school to have what society considers a minimum level of education, especially if the extra two years doesn't meet their needs or interests.

I've taught at both private and public college/universities. At the public university, I saw both very talented students and students who had serious trouble with basic reading and writing skills that should have been addressed in junior high or high school or sooner. For the students who were really struggling, the help needed to reach them when they were younger. An 18-year-old with a good high school level education can learn so much from the Internet or library, and he or she can find a lot of ways to get an education cheaply. An 18-year-old who can't read well is probably going to have trouble no matter what.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2015, 11:40:35 AM by Kwill »

mxt0133

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2015, 11:46:11 AM »
It's a known fact that you will value something more if you pay for it--even a little.  I don't think people should walk out with unbearable loans, but I would not want to see free tuition. 

Ask anyone who does a "free" seminar how many people who RSVP actually show up.  Maybe 20-30%.  It could be "sold out, please tell us if you're not coming, we have a long waiting list", and *still* 20-30% show up.  If people pay for their tickets, more like 80-90%.    Even if you make someone put a deposit down which will be 100% returned at the end of the seminar, you're more likely to get them to do you the courtesy of canceling than not communicating at all.

I completely agree prices don't just filter out who can afford an item it's also a signal on how much people value that item, on in this case education.  If there is no accountability and education in free then some people will sign up that just want to prolong adolescence or because their parents/guidance counselors told them to.  This is what is happening now with student loans being freely available to any students and parents, granted they should know what they are getting into but we all know that's not the case.  If your going to make it free then there need to be accountability like you need to actually finish and pass or you pay it back type of consideration.

As for why college education should be free in the first place well, that's a whole topic in and of it's self.  I mean first we have free elementary and high school.  Obama wants free pre-school, now he wants free two years of college.  Where will it end?  Free graduate school?  Free continuing education?

If you ask why college has become required to "succeed" in life, the insidious answer would be corporations/management are demanding them to ensure that they have a workforce that is in debt and compliant with limited options.  But i'm sure it's not as simple as that.

Pigeon

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2015, 11:49:31 AM »
I think the number of students who can go to school for free is greatly overestimated in certain circles.  Certainly there are ways for people to minimize costs that require thinking outside the traditional going away to a private college right out of high school. You can live at home, if your parents allow that, and if there is a school with a program you are interested in close by.  You can take some credits at a local CC.  You might be able to find an employer who will pay some tuition costs, etc.

But the number of middle and UMC students who are going to get a free ride is pretty small, and few people really are "that smart." 

andy85

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2015, 11:58:36 AM »
it's a trend...government gets involved in an industry and prices are going to go up...see education and healthcare.

the government is so wasteful and inefficient in general...and this "free" community college thing is absurd...free!?? Somebody is paying for it. Not only that, i have a feeling the quality of education would drop as colleges pass more students in order to get more money from the government.

"a government big enough to give you everything is strong enough to take everything away."
~no idea...just remember reading it somewhere

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2015, 12:12:52 PM »
As with health insurance, it seems like the US (mostly coming from the Democrats, but plenty from the Republicans as well) takes the least helpful middle path - subsidizing wasteful spending while leaving important services out of reach of the poor.

Future Lazy

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2015, 12:36:56 PM »
I don't know which is better. I wonder if it might be better to really strengthen K-12 education rather than stretching state and federal budgets even thinner to add years.

In the current US system, very good students can generally go to college for free or get a big discount if they aren't too picky about where they go, especially if there is family financial need. There are already subsidized loans and lower cost community college or state schools available. For some students, extra subsidies might work out well, but I wouldn't want young people to feel forced to spend more time in school to have what society considers a minimum level of education, especially if the extra two years doesn't meet their needs or interests.

I've taught at both private and public college/universities. At the public university, I saw both very talented students and students who had serious trouble with basic reading and writing skills that should have been addressed in junior high or high school or sooner. For the students who were really struggling, the help needed to reach them when they were younger. An 18-year-old with a good high school level education can learn so much from the Internet or library, and he or she can find a lot of ways to get an education cheaply. An 18-year-old who can't read well is probably going to have trouble no matter what.

I actually feel that this is really important. I'm a very good reader/writer, based on a high level of attention to this from my parents.. But public school seriously left me behind when it came to mathematics. My Algebra 2 teacher actually gave me a D- on the basis that she "couldn't send any more kids to summer school this year", the she met the cap of failures for the district. So I was moved on to Algebra 3 by my student advisor (and failed miserably, as you can imagine).

It's a known fact that you will value something more if you pay for it--even a little.  I don't think people should walk out with unbearable loans, but I would not want to see free tuition. 

Ask anyone who does a "free" seminar how many people who RSVP actually show up.  Maybe 20-30%.  It could be "sold out, please tell us if you're not coming, we have a long waiting list", and *still* 20-30% show up.  If people pay for their tickets, more like 80-90%.    Even if you make someone put a deposit down which will be 100% returned at the end of the seminar, you're more likely to get them to do you the courtesy of canceling than not communicating at all.

I completely agree prices don't just filter out who can afford an item it's also a signal on how much people value that item, on in this case education.  If there is no accountability and education in free then some people will sign up that just want to prolong adolescence or because their parents/guidance counselors told them to.  This is what is happening now with student loans being freely available to any students and parents, granted they should know what they are getting into but we all know that's not the case.  If your going to make it free then there need to be accountability like you need to actually finish and pass or you pay it back type of consideration.

As for why college education should be free in the first place well, that's a whole topic in and of it's self.  I mean first we have free elementary and high school.  Obama wants free pre-school, now he wants free two years of college.  Where will it end?  Free graduate school?  Free continuing education?

If you ask why college has become required to "succeed" in life, the insidious answer would be corporations/management are demanding them to ensure that they have a workforce that is in debt and compliant with limited options.  But i'm sure it's not as simple as that.

There's much more evidence that preschool boosts student performance throughout a lifetime, but a much larger concern that the students paying for college aren't reaping the benefits. Govt interest in the results of higher education's cost vs. it's effectiveness has to do partially with the inflation that tuition has gone through, but also has much to do with being sure that the money from programs like the Pell grant aren't being pissed away, to no fault of the student.

It's a bit silly, though, to say "Free elementary and high school!" as if a high school education is enough to provide for a family and a full life. These things are free because having a literate population benefits everyone, based on the belief that literacy should not belong only to the upper class, but be within reach of anyone.

It's also a bit silly to suggest that student loans are available only to create indentured servitude - a frugal person can easily pay back a mountain of student loans equal or even more than their yearly salary, and turn that leverage into a house or other assets later. A low wage earner, though, is never be able to reach that kind of escape velocity. You can't leverage a the cost of house against $9/hr, or even $15/hr.

RangerOne

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2015, 12:58:42 PM »
   In California I attained my education from two state funded colleges. My undergraduate at UCSD and my graduate degree at SDSU. Though the cost for these schools has risen quite a bit over the last 10 years, I feel like both these schools offer potentially rock solid educations and have a lot of quality professors.  Your for 4 years will be well under 100k assuming you work so you don't have to take out money to live. You can work part time and afford living with roommates in our area, and still have plenty of bandwidth to pursue and undergraduate degree.

Most of the people I know with crippling debt went on to professional schools, like medical, law school, pharmacy or some other specialized degree, went to a private undergraduate college with mediocre academic marks so they didn't get many scholarships, or used loans to pay for 4 years of fancy college living.

State and UC schools certainly have plenty of waste and need reform, but so do private institutions. They still bring a lot of added value to the community in the form of research and art and lots of jobs, so I feel the state gets more for its money than just cheaper student education. For profits are a whole other story. Most of those are just government leaches with opportunities for a very few.

gimp

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2015, 01:43:30 PM »
This is a really touch question with a lot of factors to consider.

Here is my opinion, without much fact to back it up. If I were king, here's how I would do post-secondary education, roughly:

- Private universities, non-profit and for-profit, can exist and mostly do as they please (subject to some accreditation requirements.)
- Set up public two-year colleges (CC), entirely funded by the government but mostly free to do as they please. Their funding is fixed and pays per student enrolled, with bonuses for each student who has successfully graduated, and further bonuses for their reporting either a job in their field, or a well paying job, or attendance of higher education. Actual definitions of those things are complex, just assume they would be reasonable and reasonably strict, to avoid things like graduating everyone and massive grade inflation. Extra funding for specific areas: lab equipment and other specialized requirements; one-time grants for construction and development; and so on. Offset for cost of living in certain areas (CC in silicon valley gets more per student than CC in bumblefuck, egypt.) Will admit anyone with acceptable grades automatically. Anyone not coming straight out of high school needs to apply, but with rolling admissions, it shouldn't be very difficult to get in: just a bit of a burden to show that the applicant is serious. However, poor grades in school result in suspension / expulsion, no need to waste money on people who won't learn. Standardized programs have standardized tests, to avoid grade inflation to keep students enrolled who shouldn't be.
- Set up public four-year universities, with post-bachelor's programs, again entirely funded by the government but mostly separate. Similar requirements for funding. Tough admissions requirements. Similar grades requirements. Pay top dollar for professors to attract top talent. Separate teaching from research: a professor may be hired exclusively for one, or the other, or both, but does not have to do both. Do everything possible to ensure high standards, high reputation, good education - this will attract top students, especially considering they need not pay tuition. Ensure that other student costs (rent, books, living expense grants) are disbursed liberally to any who need them. Have programs that attract top talent from outside the country, similarly at no cost, and ensure they have education and work visas.

Now every other private university has to compete with excellent free public universities. They can charge however much they like, but they'll actually have to charge what they're worth - today, every goddamn private university, regardless of how good it is, charges the same amount (roughly) because they can.

On the other hand, anyone who wants to attend a CC can also do so free of charge, provided they keep their grades up. They can focus on an academics path to further education elsewhere, or an employment path to learn skills that get them hired upon graduation.

High school is really not enough anymore, so if at least two more years are required for most people to have a decent career, then we should be paying for those two years. And yes, I will happily pay some extra tax to make it happen; even selfishly, more educated folks earn more money and buy more products from my employer, which keeps me paid as well.

caliq

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2015, 05:10:30 PM »
I believe the benefit of free community college would be for those people who are often victimized by for-profit institutions with horrible retention, graduation, and job placement rates.  Veterans, first-generation college attendees, non-traditional students -- all of these groups would benefit greatly from the abolition of bullshit schools like ITT and DeVry, etc.  And community colleges should advertise their free-ness on TV, the radio, online -- anything to get these vulnerable markets away from the companies that are taking advantage of them.

I'm married to a veteran who almost went down that path when we first started dating,  and I have seen many of his friends squander their GI bill benefits and even take on federal student loans for degrees and certificates that aren't worth jack.  Obviously I feel quite strongly on the subject!

On the subject of middle class/UMC financial aid:  my parents' expected family contribution to my freshman year of college in 2009-2010, with an income of around 80k, was enough to entitle me to absolutely $0 of federal financial aid, and no federal student loans.  Luckily I did well enough in high school (3.3 GPA actually not that great) to be given an honors program free ride to a second-tier state university.  For personal reasons (being 17 and very stupid), I left that school -- when I returned to college in 2011, my parents' business had failed, they had a NEGATIVE AGI (I do not know how this was legal but I think they were making personal loans to the company?), and I was eligible for exactly $5500 of federal Pell Grants, the maximum of "free money" you can get from the federal government -- and not enough to cover a year at even a community college.  On top of that, I got $3500 of federal subsidized loans (no interest accrues while in school) and $2000 of unsubsidized loans (interest accrues while in school), for a grand total of $10,500.  Which will not cover 1 year of tuition at my in state flagship public university. 

It's very rare to get a free ride -- you might EARN one with strong academics or community contributions, but that's the same as EARNING the money to pay for it out of pocket. 

That said, I do think that K12 education needs to be strengthened significantly and that there need to be alternative paths to college education.  However, pigeonholing kids who don't perform in high school is problematic; not everyone figures out that academics matter at age 14 (myself included!).  I think the issue could be solved by increasing the minimum standards of continuing on in college -- "C's get degrees" needs to stop. 

TerriM

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #15 on: January 09, 2015, 09:27:46 PM »
it's a trend...government gets involved in an industry and prices are going to go up...see education and healthcare.

the government is so wasteful and inefficient in general...and this "free" community college thing is absurd...free!?? Somebody is paying for it. Not only that, i have a feeling the quality of education would drop as colleges pass more students in order to get more money from the government.

Yup.  That's right.  Free is not free.  Ask people in good school districts how much their "free elementary/middle/high school" is costing them in property taxes.   

Future Lazy

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2015, 08:40:01 PM »
it's a trend...government gets involved in an industry and prices are going to go up...see education and healthcare.

the government is so wasteful and inefficient in general...and this "free" community college thing is absurd...free!?? Somebody is paying for it. Not only that, i have a feeling the quality of education would drop as colleges pass more students in order to get more money from the government.

Yup.  That's right.  Free is not free.  Ask people in good school districts how much their "free elementary/middle/high school" is costing them in property taxes.

Precisely true. Although the media's wording, and even maybe Obama's wording (although I haven't heard/read any direct quotations) is "free", that's why I found it was important to emphasize subsidized vs. unsubsidized. Nothing is free, but there are certain things that are excellent investments in the wellbeing of a population, literacy one of them.

Have we come to the point where two years of college education should also be subsidized for the same reasons that elementary, middle and high school are?

dividendman

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2015, 10:13:14 PM »
I'm pretty hard-core libertarian in my views. I voted for no government funding.

I actually think we can go a step further with this view but it's pretty radical, will never happen, and has one big non-libertarian element.

I think ALL schooling should be private but you are able to enroll (and must enroll in k-12 let's say). How is it private? Instead of paying property tax or whatever tax later in life, you just get stuck with debt equaling the cost of your schooling for k-12 or however long you were in school. Essentially you pay for your own education after the fact. The loans from k-12 (or whatever) are guaranteed to be there by the gov and after that it's private institutions.

I also think that wealth transfer should be illegal (which is totally not libertarian, and impossible to enforce really, but works with the above model). So everyone makes it on their own merits. You can only have the money you earn/gain from your earnings. When you die it all goes to charities that are set up for the truly unfortunate due to physical or mental disability, so we won't even need high taxes to take care of those people.

caliq

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2015, 10:18:05 PM »
I'm pretty hard-core libertarian in my views. I voted for no government funding.

I actually think we can go a step further with this view but it's pretty radical, will never happen, and has one big non-libertarian element.

I think ALL schooling should be private but you are able to enroll (and must enroll in k-12 let's say). How is it private? Instead of paying property tax or whatever tax later in life, you just get stuck with debt equaling the cost of your schooling for k-12 or however long you were in school. Essentially you pay for your own education after the fact. The loans from k-12 (or whatever) are guaranteed to be there by the gov and after that it's private institutions.

I also think that wealth transfer should be illegal (which is totally not libertarian, and impossible to enforce really, but works with the above model). So everyone makes it on their own merits. You can only have the money you earn/gain from your earnings. When you die it all goes to charities that are set up for the truly unfortunate due to physical or mental disability, so we won't even need high taxes to take care of those people.

Thanks for sharing this interesting idea! It had never occurred to me and its' definitely gotten the wheels spinning :)

Future Lazy

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2015, 10:29:07 PM »
I'm pretty hard-core libertarian in my views. I voted for no government funding.

I actually think we can go a step further with this view but it's pretty radical, will never happen, and has one big non-libertarian element.

I think ALL schooling should be private but you are able to enroll (and must enroll in k-12 let's say). How is it private? Instead of paying property tax or whatever tax later in life, you just get stuck with debt equaling the cost of your schooling for k-12 or however long you were in school. Essentially you pay for your own education after the fact. The loans from k-12 (or whatever) are guaranteed to be there by the gov and after that it's private institutions.

I also think that wealth transfer should be illegal (which is totally not libertarian, and impossible to enforce really, but works with the above model). So everyone makes it on their own merits. You can only have the money you earn/gain from your earnings. When you die it all goes to charities that are set up for the truly unfortunate due to physical or mental disability, so we won't even need high taxes to take care of those people.

Thanks for sharing this interesting idea! It had never occurred to me and its' definitely gotten the wheels spinning :)

Is it the responsibility of the parent to pay the expenses back? Or the responsibility of the child once they reach adulthood? I'd be fine with this if it is on the parent, but as a kiddo whose parents spent several tens of thousands of dollars on my k-4th grade education alone with a private school (but managed to put nothing aside for my college education..), would I have been stuck with (for example) 100k of govt subsidized debt upon receiving my highschool diploma based on my parent's choice of school? That's a little unnerving, my parents made terrible financial choices...

caliq

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #20 on: January 10, 2015, 10:37:40 PM »
I'm pretty hard-core libertarian in my views. I voted for no government funding.

I actually think we can go a step further with this view but it's pretty radical, will never happen, and has one big non-libertarian element.

I think ALL schooling should be private but you are able to enroll (and must enroll in k-12 let's say). How is it private? Instead of paying property tax or whatever tax later in life, you just get stuck with debt equaling the cost of your schooling for k-12 or however long you were in school. Essentially you pay for your own education after the fact. The loans from k-12 (or whatever) are guaranteed to be there by the gov and after that it's private institutions.

I also think that wealth transfer should be illegal (which is totally not libertarian, and impossible to enforce really, but works with the above model). So everyone makes it on their own merits. You can only have the money you earn/gain from your earnings. When you die it all goes to charities that are set up for the truly unfortunate due to physical or mental disability, so we won't even need high taxes to take care of those people.

Thanks for sharing this interesting idea! It had never occurred to me and its' definitely gotten the wheels spinning :)

Is it the responsibility of the parent to pay the expenses back? Or the responsibility of the child once they reach adulthood? I'd be fine with this if it is on the parent, but as a kiddo whose parents spent several tens of thousands of dollars on my k-4th grade education alone with a private school (but managed to put nothing aside for my college education..), would I have been stuck with (for example) 100k of govt subsidized debt upon receiving my highschool diploma based on my parent's choice of school? That's a little unnerving, my parents made terrible financial choices...

I would think, and I'm not sure if this is in keeping with the original idea, but at least in my 'ideal world' type scenario, if you were going to follow through on the libertarian earned-money-only type thing, that you would not be damaged by the debt because everyone else would have it too.  I don't really think this is feasible IRL, but if I went along with the concept, the ideal would be for all K12 educations to be held to the exact same standards and costs, with no way of the parents paying extra to boost their children?  Because that's just another way of transferring wealth. 

It'd be a huge societal shift and is unlikely to happen (just as I can't really see 100% "free" higher education happening in the US).  I just like the idea of everyone making it on their own merits.  There's two ways to achieve it I guess: fully subsidizing and not subsidizing at all, including not allowing parents to subsidize.  I see issues and benefits to both, and I think the worst place to be is the weird in-between that we're at now. 

NICE!

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2015, 11:33:16 PM »
The European/Scandanavian model of 100% free college will absolutely not work here. Nope.

Also they liberals that champion it love to forget how selective it is. The American system does provide more opportunities for those who do not do as well in school. Basically anyone can go to college if they can finish high school. I will say that the unfortunate side effect of this is that college is becoming necessary for jobs that definitely don't need that level of education.

We do need to fix this cost/loan/subsidized system somehow. Perhaps federal loans need to be tied to performance metrics. Perhaps we should be able to discharge them in bankruptcy. However, if they change the bankuptcy they will HAVE to let the market determine the interest rates. That will make them rise and will thus make people a little more leery of them/more likely to finish school quickly and not waste money.

I also think the game is changing under our feet with online offerings. The tenure system will probably be gone in most universities within 20 years.

dividendman

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Re: Which Is Better: Subsidized College, or Unsubsidized College?
« Reply #22 on: January 24, 2015, 12:53:18 AM »
I'm pretty hard-core libertarian in my views. I voted for no government funding.

I actually think we can go a step further with this view but it's pretty radical, will never happen, and has one big non-libertarian element.

I think ALL schooling should be private but you are able to enroll (and must enroll in k-12 let's say). How is it private? Instead of paying property tax or whatever tax later in life, you just get stuck with debt equaling the cost of your schooling for k-12 or however long you were in school. Essentially you pay for your own education after the fact. The loans from k-12 (or whatever) are guaranteed to be there by the gov and after that it's private institutions.

I also think that wealth transfer should be illegal (which is totally not libertarian, and impossible to enforce really, but works with the above model). So everyone makes it on their own merits. You can only have the money you earn/gain from your earnings. When you die it all goes to charities that are set up for the truly unfortunate due to physical or mental disability, so we won't even need high taxes to take care of those people.

Thanks for sharing this interesting idea! It had never occurred to me and its' definitely gotten the wheels spinning :)

Is it the responsibility of the parent to pay the expenses back? Or the responsibility of the child once they reach adulthood? I'd be fine with this if it is on the parent, but as a kiddo whose parents spent several tens of thousands of dollars on my k-4th grade education alone with a private school (but managed to put nothing aside for my college education..), would I have been stuck with (for example) 100k of govt subsidized debt upon receiving my highschool diploma based on my parent's choice of school? That's a little unnerving, my parents made terrible financial choices...

I would think, and I'm not sure if this is in keeping with the original idea, but at least in my 'ideal world' type scenario, if you were going to follow through on the libertarian earned-money-only type thing, that you would not be damaged by the debt because everyone else would have it too.  I don't really think this is feasible IRL, but if I went along with the concept, the ideal would be for all K12 educations to be held to the exact same standards and costs, with no way of the parents paying extra to boost their children?  Because that's just another way of transferring wealth. 

It'd be a huge societal shift and is unlikely to happen (just as I can't really see 100% "free" higher education happening in the US).  I just like the idea of everyone making it on their own merits.  There's two ways to achieve it I guess: fully subsidizing and not subsidizing at all, including not allowing parents to subsidize.  I see issues and benefits to both, and I think the worst place to be is the weird in-between that we're at now.

caliq has what I was trying to convey. This is the big non-libertarian aspect (or perhaps it is VERY libertarian - why parents have virtually unlimited ability to mess with an independent human just because the human is their young progeny really angers me - a different topic, but essentially why this is radical and never going to happen :) ). Basically, there would be exactly one school system (per jurisdiction) and the student gets saddled with the loans. Parents can't buy better schools for their kids, or buy anything for their kids really. Ideally, in my crazy meritocracy fantasy, when you're a kid you get a guaranteed loan for your education, clothes and food up to some age. Then you pay it off after you reach that age but taxes would be much less.

This idea falls apart because there is no practical way to limit wealth transfer. If the kid cleans the house and you pay them 1M to do it, is that just pay for a job or a wealth transfer?

Sigh... I hope someone comes up with a way where the western democracies (and the world eventually) were truly meritocracies. This was just my flawed way to go about it.