Thursday, August 11, 2011

This Year Keep Your Kids Home From College

Mike Adams

I am frequently asked whether I would be willing to spend the money necessary to send my own kids to a four-year brick and mortar college. The answer used to be a qualified “yes.” But college isn’t what it used to be. So my answer is now a firm “probably not.”

While I once considered college to be a good investment for most high school graduates I have come to believe that it is a bad idea for most of them. Note that I am not saying that college simply doesn’t deliver the good things it once did. I am saying much more than that; namely that it often hurts young people. And it does so in at least four distinct ways:

1. Spiritually. Three out of four Christian teens walk away from church after they leave home. The fact that they do so is largely the result of what they encounter in college. Here in my department (Sociology and Criminology) at my university (UNC-Wilmington) the anti-Christian indoctrination begins in freshman survey courses. Feminist professors are seemingly incapable of discussing important issues like same-sex marriage without engaging in ad hominem attacks against Christians. For example, those who adhere to the majority view (in support of traditional marriage) are characterized by their feminist sociology professors as advancing “hetero-sexism” driven by “homo-phobia.”

It is no wonder that in classroom discussions the students voice support for the professor’s opinion. They want to avoid being attacked personally. And so a false consensus emerges. Eventually the students abandon their worldview in a move based on the false premise that their views are somehow out of sync with social progress.

Just in case the student retains some of his religious upbringing an array of special programs and special offices – designed to indoctrinate on religious issues –is there to reinforce your child’s spiritual drift. Our own LGBTQIA Office organizes specific lectures teaching kids that their biblical views on sexuality are actually a form of mental illness, or phobia. This helps explain the second way kids are often harmed by college.

2. Morally. I don’t know when it first hit me. Maybe it was when I saw our (former) Women’s Resource Center director handing out condoms to students during orientation. Or maybe it was when I read about the “sexual health expert” who gave a lecture (on a UNC campus) called “Safe Sodomy.” Or maybe it was the time they erected (sorry) a vibrator museum on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill.

No, I think it was the time our Women’s Center put pictures of nude little girls in the lobby of Randall Library. Yes, that was the moment it really hit me. It was right after seeing the exposed breasts and pubic hair of a thirteen year old girl on public display (sorry) in the library that I arrived at an important conclusion: Our universities are being run by some deeply disturbed people who, with feet planted firmly in mid-air, are simply incapable of providing moral leadership. Incidentally, the child porn display was posted only a few feet from a display advocating national health care for, you guessed it, prostitutes. I’m sorry. Sex workers.

It is little wonder why these people attack our Judeo-Christian heritage. Sodom and Gomorrah University cannot thrive in the presence of God. And that is why your child stands almost no chance of being improved morally in the typical college environment.

3. Intellectually. Put simply, college makes most kids think less, not more (and certainly not better). If you don’t believe me try having a conversation with a current college student. And pick a topic like economics – one that should be dominated by reason, not emotion. Throw out a few rational observations and note the emotive responses. You might find yourself in a conversation like this one:

Adult (who went to college prior to the 1990s): Social security simply is not sustainable. When the program was established we had over twenty workers paying in for every retiree drawing out. Now we only have a few workers paying in for every retiree drawing out. If we do not abolish the program we will have to increase the age of eligibility.

Emotional college student: I feel like social security is a good idea. It would be calloused to abolish it and I feel like it would be wrong to increase the age of eligibility.

Adult: The stimulus package was a failure – even if we judge it only by the standards of its proponents. In other words, it fails objectively by the standards it was promised to deliver.

Emotional college student: Even if it failed before, I feel like it could work if we tried it again.

Adult: The national debt just reached the level of our current GDP. And the Dow dropped over 500 points recently. It’s tough to understand how we’re going to be able to afford national health care and another stimulus package.

Emotional college student: I just feel like national health care is something we need to do – something we need to provide for our weakest citizens. I feel like we could afford it if we would just stop fighting all these wars.

Author’s note: Unfortunately, you have just read excerpts from a recent conversation between this author and a college student who has never drawn a paycheck. The author will return to this issue momentarily.

4. Financially. My university is facing budgets cuts of over 15% in the coming academic year. We could easily cut more than 15% from the budget by doing two things: a) Getting rid of six-digit high level administrators who have overlapping jobs and limited responsibilities. b) Getting rid of the unnecessary offices that house unnecessary mid-level administrators. Start with the Queer Politics Center (The LGBTQIA Resource Office). But don’t stop there. Get rid of the Black Separatist Center (The African American Cultural Center). Then, close down the Abortion Politics Center (The Women’s Resource Center). Let these people pursue politics on their own dime.

It will never happen, though. The administrators will all stay employed and the offices will all remain open. They’ll just raise tuition to cover the shortfall from the proposed budget cuts. In this economy, that means that after your kid graduates from college his part time job as a bartender will become his full time job as a bartender. And he’ll need those extra hours because, guess what? Now he’s got debt! And the interest on student loans is about to skyrocket.

There are many jobs out there that require a college education. Doctors must have degrees before they can go to medical school. Lawyers must have degrees before they go to law school. But college is no longer affordable. And that means college is no longer a place to go to figure out what you want to do with your life. So if your teenager is uncertain about what he wants to do then tell him to stay home for a year or two and get a job. And save some money.

After your teen draws a paycheck for a year or two he’ll be less inclined to adopt an economic philosophy based on feelings, not reality. He will be able to use his savings to keep his debt under control should he decide to go to college later. And, best of all, he’ll gain some maturity that will shield him against the spiritual and moral decline his professors call “enlightenment” and “liberation.”


Higher Education Bubble Leads to Sex-for-Tuition and Kidneys-for-Cash Proposal; Moody's Questions Value of Liberal Arts Majors

College tuition has gotten so high that coeds are selling sex to pay for their inflated tuitions, and a professor recently suggested that students sell their kidneys.

But higher education isn’t worth what it used to be. A credit rating agency, Moody’s, is now warning student borrowers that college may not be worth the money for some majors. As Reason Magazine notes, a higher education bubble looms:

A growing chorus of economists and educators think that the higher education industry will be America’s next bubble. Easy credit, high tuition, and poor job prospects have resulted in growing delinquency and default rates on nearly $1 trillion worth of private and federally subsidized loans. Now the ratings agency Moody’s has weighed in with a chilling diagnosis: “Unless students limit their debt burdens, choose fields of study that are in demand, and successfully complete their degrees on time, they will find themselves in worse financial positions and unable to earn the projected income that justified taking out their loans in the first place.”

Two law schools are being sued for fraudulent placement data in class-action lawsuits. Law school tuition has gone up 1000 percent since 1960 in real terms, even as law schools teach students few practical skills and little real-world knowledge of the law. A tenured law professor at a well-ranked law school admits that law school is a “scam” and that his faculty colleagues are “overpaid,” “inadequate teachers,” many of whom work just a few hours a day.

Due to market distortions like the proliferation of unnecessary state licensing requirements that require useless paper credentials, and financial aid that directly encourages colleges to raise tuition, colleges can raise tuition year after year, consuming a larger and larger fraction of the increased lifetime earnings students hope to obtain by going to college.

Meanwhile, college students learn less and less with each passing year. “Thirty-six percent” of college students learned little in four years of college, and students now spend “50% less time studying compared with students a few decades ago, the research shows.” Thirty-two percent never take “a course in a typical semester where they read more than 40 pages per week.”

States spend hundreds of millions of dollars operating colleges that are worthless diploma mills, yet manage to graduate almost no one – like Chicago State, “which has just a 12.8 percent six-year graduation rate.” Bush increased federal education spending 58 percent faster than inflation, while Obama seeks to double it. Spending has exploded at the K-12 level: per-pupil spending in the U.S. is among the highest in the world, and “inflation-adjusted K-12 spending tripled over the last 40 years.”


Only half of British maths and science teachers have 'good enough' degrees to do their jobs

Many trainee maths and science teachers do not have good degrees in their subject, a study suggests. While nine in 10 classics trainees and almost four-fifths of would-be history teachers have a first or 2:1 university degree, this falls to around half for maths and science trainees.

Those training to be foreign language teachers are also less likely to have a 'good' degree, with more than a third holding a 2:2 or lower, the Good Teacher Training Guide 2011 found.

Researchers at Buckingham University's Centre for Education and Employment Research conclude there is a clear link between lower degree qualifications, low course completion rates and the numbers entering teaching.

About 80 per cent of English and history trainee secondary school teachers entered training after completing their course.

But this fell to 70 per cent for maths, 69 per cent for science and 66 per cent for modern foreign languages, all of which are subjects where the numbers with 'good' degrees are lower.

Report author Professor Alan Smithers said it means that teacher training departments have more choice when recruiting history or English teachers, but struggle with other subjects.

'Training departments are able to choose more carefully who they recruit, but if there are not enough people studying science and maths, the training departments really struggle to recruit and bring in people who don't want to be teachers and are not as well qualified,' he said.

This has an impact on the enthusiasm of pupils, who are then less likely to take up subjects like science and maths, Professor Smithers said. 'A teacher, to be really enthusiastic, has to have a full grasp of their subject, so the chances are if you have got a very well qualified historian or somebody teaching classics, they will make the subject come alive for their pupils.

'But if you have got somebody in maths, or the physical sciences who is really trying to keep up with it themselves, then they are not going to convey the same sense of enthusiasm.

'Young people can easily be exposed to very enthusiastic historians and people who are struggling with their own grasp of physics.'

Ministers have announced plans to scrap public funding for teacher trainees who do not hold at least a 2:2 in their degree.

The report concludes: 'The low entry qualifications of some postgraduate and undergraduate trainees, as the Government recognises, has to be tackled. 'No one wants to see teachers attempting to teach subjects which they do not fully grasp themselves.

'But if not enough people with the necessary expertise put themselves forward, the difficult question that has to be faced in formulating policy is: is it better to have an able graduate who has not studied a subject at university or someone who has studied the subject at university but not done very well in it?

'Is it better, for example, to have a good biologist or a poor physicist teaching physics?'


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