Some (Widespread) False Traditions about College, Grades, and Career
A Good Plan?
President Obama proposes making two years of community college free for everyone. As The New York Times reported (“Expanding Community College Access”), the Administration’s “preliminary plans…call for an estimated $60 billion in new spending over ten years…” That’s right. Just throw more money at it and things will get better, right?
Actually, no. What if, instead, we didn’t raise taxes $60 billion for the program (plus the extra funds necessary to administer it) and left these resources in the hands of the private economy?
This gets to the crux of one of our deepest and most pressing problems today. When we see a need in society—almost any need, it turns out—someone proposes a government program. The costs of such programs, and the regulations of implementing them, make our economy less inviting for investors and innovators. Naturally, jobs, capital, and opportunities go to other nations.
The result? The economy struggles even more. And, behold, a politician in Washington takes note of the increased struggles and suggests yet another economy-killing government program.
This downward cycle is literally fueling our national decline. These types of government programs have had real results: Where one wage earner in a household made enough for the family to live on in the 1950s, today it takes two wage earners plus a steadily increasing amount of debt for households to pay for a lesser standard of living.