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Wed Jan 8, 2014, 02:18 AM


Dumbing America Down: The Right wants us to think higher education has no value.

Among the many visionary goals of our nation’s right wing—impoverish older people, starve the poor, deny climate change, outlaw abortion and contraception, eliminate healthcare for millions—few are more foundational than defunding education in general and higher education in particular. Public colleges and universities nationwide have seen significant funding cuts over the past five years, and while the recession is usually blamed, the Right keeps the fiscal screws tight by cutting taxes on the wealthy and corporations. Here in Michigan, in Republican Gov. Rick Snyder’s first budget, there was a 15 percent cut in state aid to universities and a $1.8 billion tax cut for businesses....

The Pew Research Center and others have found that lower income and less-educated whites are becoming more likely to vote Republican than Democrat, with 54 percent of those without a college degree identifying as Republican in 2012; only 37 percent identified as Democratic, so the gap is, well, quite wide.

The recent assaults on the value of a college degree (coupled with the shameful student loan scandal) have borne fruit: According to a College Board and National Journal poll, 46 percent of respondents believe a college degree isn’t necessary for success, while only 37 percent said so in the previous year’s poll. Here is another victory of opinion over fact...

Or take California as an example. Disinvestment has been so massive—9 percent over the past ten years—that according to the Public Policy Institute of California, the state now spends more on its prison system than on its public universities. With few choices but to raise tuition, University of California and California State schools have seen enrollments drop by one-fifth over the past five years. If the trend persists, the state faces a significant drop in college graduates just at the time when more and more jobs—some estimate as many as 60 percent—will require some post-secondary education.


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Reply Dumbing America Down: The Right wants us to think higher education has no value. (Original post)
El_Johns Jan 2014 OP
defacto7 Jan 2014 #1
newfie11 Jan 2014 #2
KurtNYC Jan 2014 #3

Response to El_Johns (Original post)

Wed Jan 8, 2014, 02:43 AM

1. The Ignorant are so much easier to control.

Thinkers and skeptics are cumbersome. I mean, how can you keep the underlings in line if they actually know something? No, no, knowledge is only for those with enough money and position to manipulate it into the most profitable form or to pretend not to need it.

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Response to defacto7 (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 8, 2014, 08:01 AM

2. Exactly

Sheeple are no trouble. More education leads to asking questions and governments are tired of thinking up lies to tell.

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Response to El_Johns (Original post)

Wed Jan 8, 2014, 10:21 AM

3. Another article looked at the same poll and looked at reasons behind the differing opinions

Good graph here:


Other data shows that women are more likely than men to finish college because women are less opposed to going into major debt to do so. Taken overall, I think the poll and other data is showing that 1) the workplace is still perceived as highly discriminatory and favoring white males, and 2) therefore, students who are not white males perceive higher education as a way to help overcome the ongoing prejudices of the American workplace.

I think we have lost the over-arching vision that this country can be better in the future than it is today. Without that, there is a kind of piecemeal approach. College is now a piece of a puzzle that our kids have to put together -- the puzzle is how to be successful in this new economy.

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