Higher Education Should Be Free
A Human Right, An Economic Necessity
Choose to Revitalize Our Country


Why should higher education be free?

Because it is the right thing to do.
Because it is the smart thing to do.
Because it will help our children and grandchildren.
Because it will greatly assist the economy.
Because it is a human right.
Because it is better to spend money on education than on warfare.
Because it will re-energize our democracy by making better citizens.

Human potential and achievements are wonderful things. But they are often frustrated or made impossible by the greed and/or stupidity of others.

You, as a potential student, are being lied to, cheated, and stolen from by the very rich, the corporations and their propaganda. The fact that you are in college (or possibly otherwise) means you are in the top third of the human race in intelligence. But like everyone, you have to be given a chance or you won't reach your potential, leaving both you and the human race less civilized and successful.

Why are students graduating with overwhelming debt? Why are so many amazing people unable to afford college and to develop their potential not only for themselves but also for our society? Why is the economy in such a mess? Why is our country sinking from first place to lower or even last among other countries? Some of the facts below may give you insights into what's happening and how to fix these problems. Use this research for talking points. Look up the books and read them.

As a citizen, you have a responsibility to get involved. Don't just put up with things. Speak up! Run for office!

 

The Value of Higher Education

The G.I. Bill Success Story

Education: A Human Right

Articles Urging Free Higher Education

The Latest Economic Study

The Purpose of Higher Education

A Petition for Free Higher Education

UPDATE--Free Higher Education in Europe

References

 


 

The Value of Higher Education

"For every $1 spent [by the government or student] on a
college, a total of $3 of wealth is generated [for the economy](90-1).

This return breaks down as follows:

For the student, the annualized internal rate of return on investment in a Bachelor’s degree is up to 13.4% per annum (11).

For the public/state, the annualized internal rate of return on investment in undergraduate education is around 12.1% per annum (11).

Overall, education causes 50% or more of the growth in the economy. Higher education contributes almost half of that (82).

For the local community, every dollar in a community college’s budget results in $1.60 of local business volume being created. For each $1 million in the college’s budget, 59 jobs are created (13; 71).

The social rate of return (taxes paid) is 12.1% per annum. And this does not include spillover, i.e., benefits to others (71; 75).

In addition, there are fringe benefits: superior working conditions, better health, longer life, lower unemployment, lower disability rates, less crime, lowered recidivism, lower welfare costs, more money given to charities, more taxes paid, more research and development, promotes equal opportunity, and promotes social mobility of minorities.

[To say nothing of lost possibilities if students who cannot afford college. What if Einstein could not have afforded college?]

To what degree is college cost an obstacle? For every $100 increase in tuition costs, first-time student enrollment drops .7% (124-5). A $100 decrease in tuition, however, results in a 1.8% increase in enrollment (155).

Public investments should be increased where social returns are the greatest (184). If investment in higher education is allowed to stagnate, state and local economies will be reduced (185).

Higher education is not an expense, it is a high-yielding
investment which makes a much better economy possible. (All of above
from Leslie & Brinkman, 1988)

 

The above facts mean that the more state and federal governments cut higher education funding, the more they are cutting their own economies and futures.

The obvious conclusion is that for students, higher education ought to be free. If they can pass the exams and courses, they shouldn't have to pay anything. Forcing students to pay for their own educations is slitting our own throats... and destroying the country.


The One Comic That Explains Just How Screwed America Is


Daily Kos poster

The G.I. Bill Success

The 1950s were a boom time for most Americans. Why? Higher education was free and accessible for almost everyone due to the G.I. Bill. This meant that almost all people were free to reach their potential and make an impressive contribution to the economy and the society. Poor people, minorities, everyone got a "leg-up" and returned that favor with interest.

"A subcommittee of the Congressional Joint Economic Committee estimated that the G.I. Bill returned $6.90 in revenue for every $1 spent on educating these veterans, based on the resulting increased income and productivity." (http://www.freehighered.org/h_faqs.html, accessed in 1988 [site no longer works]).

"The authors [of a new book] make it clear that the education benefits of the [G.I. Bill] legislation helped spur postwar economic growth by training legions of professionals. The GI Bill, they write, “made possible the education of fourteen future Nobel laureates, two dozen Pulitzer Prize winners, three Supreme Court justices, [and] three presidents of the United States’’ (Leddy). Access to higher education can do that.

"The G.I. Bill helped make U.S. democracy more vibrant in the middle of the twentieth century.... The economic impact was huge... To revitalize U.S. democracy for the twenty-first century, we need to create that same sense of reciprocal obligation between citizens and government" (Mettler).

"...the bill promised every GI Joe and GI Jane the building blocks of what would become the American dream: low-cost loans to buy a home and, perhaps most important, a free college education" (CBS News).


Education: A Human Right

The right to [free] education is a universal entitlement, recognized in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as a human right (Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right_to_education, accessed 5/22/2014).

UN Human Rights Article 13: The States Parties [countries] to the present Covenant recognize the right of everyone to education. They agree that education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and the sense of its dignity, and shall strengthen the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. They further agree that education shall enable all persons to participate effectively in a free society [my emphasis], promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations and all racial, ethnic or religious groups, and further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace...

Article 13, 2(c) Higher education shall be made equally accessible to all, on the basis of capacity, by every appropriate means, and in particular by the progressive introduction of free education" (U.N.).


Articles Urging Free Higher Education

Do the Math: Free Public Higher Education Should Be Considered "Consider the math. In 2009-10, the average cost of tuition, room and board for undergraduates at public four-year institutions was $14,870, and $7,629 for two-year public colleges. When you multiply the number of students in each segment by the average total cost, it amounts to a price tag of $127 billion for free public higher ed... But consider this: that same year, the federal government spent $35 billion on Pell grants and $104 billion on student loans, with states spending at least $10 billion on financial aid for universities and colleges and another $80 billion for direct support of higher education, the research shows." Conclusion: It wouldn't cost us any more to free our children from debt and make higher education free.

Free Higher Education Is a Human Right "How can we deny a higher education to any young person in this country just because she or he can't afford it?...The numbers show that barriers to higher education are an economic burden for both students and society."

Why Public Higher Education Should Be Free: How to Decrease Cost and Increase Quality at American Universities, book by Robert Samuels "Throughout the book, Samuels argues that the future of our economy and democracy rests on our ability to train students to be thoughtful participants in the production and analysis of knowledge. If leading universities serve only to grant credentials and prestige, our society will suffer irrevocable harm."

Higher Ed Not Debt "In early March Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) kicked off “Higher Ed, Not Debt,” a coalition of more than 60 progressive groups looking to turn the widespread frustration over student debt into a full-fledged political force... The system is in desperate need of an upgrade. The biggest banks in the country enjoy discounted interest rates at 1% while student loans have the potential to increase up to 8.25% for undergraduates and 9.5% for graduates. This just goes to show that we invest more in millionaires than in students working hard for an education.

Wall Street Profits or Student Opportunity? "Wall Street is raking in about $44 billion in profits every year from higher education. Students are struggling with rising tuition and skyrocketing student loan debt. Colleges, communities and taxpayers are on the hook for interest payments on loans taken on by colleges. And for-profit institutions divert funds from education programs to shareholder profits."

7 Startling Facts That College Graduates Know All Too Well "Ninety-six percent of students at for-profit colleges take out student loans, compared to 13% of community college students, 48% of public college students and 57% of nonprofit college students. This is alarming since for-profit colleges are notorious for low graduation and high interest rates, while producing little post-graduate success and collecting $32 billion in government subsidies."


Latest Economic Study

THE BOOK: Piketty, Thomas. Translated from French by Arthur Goldhammer. Capital In the Twenty-First Century. Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2014. This book, by an economics professor (and founding director) of the Paris School of Economics, just came out (May, 2014) and has become a surprise best-seller! Emphases and notes in [these brackets] are mine (Colby Glass).

"Knowledge and skill diffusion [education] is the key to overall productivity growth" (Picketty, p. 21).

"Over a long period of time, the main force in favor of greater equality has been the diffusion of knowledge and skills [ie., education]" (Picketty, p. 22).

"In essence, all of these [successful] countries themselves financed the necessary investments in physical capital and, even more, in human capital, which the latest research holds to be the key to long-term growth' (Picketty, p. 70).

"To sum up, historical experience suggests that the principal mechanism of [economic success]... is the diffusion of knowledge... Above all, knowledge diffusion depends on a country's ability to mobilize financing as well as institutions that encourage large scale investment in education" (Picketty, p. 71).

"Now consider the US case. Two economists, Claudia Goldin and Lawrence Katz, systematically compared the following two evolutions in the period 1890-2005... the wage gap between workers who graduated from college and those who ad only a high school degree... the conclusion is stark... the wage gap... suddenly begins to widen in the 1980s, at precisely the moment when for the first time the number of college graduates stops growing... Goldin and Katz have no doubt that increased wage inequality in the United States is due to a failure to invest sufficiently in higher education... they conclude, the United States should invest heavily in education so that as many people as possible can attend college" (Picketty, p. 306).

"... the best way to increase average productivity... and the overall growth of the economy is surely to invest in education..." (Picketty, pp. 306-7).

",,,if the United States... invested more heavily in high-quality professional training and advanced educational opportunities and allowed broader segments of the population to have access to them, this would surely be the most effective way of increasing wages... The question of how to pay for education, and in particular how to pay for higher education, is everywhere one of the key issues of the twenty-first century" (Picketty, P. 307).

"In all human societies, health and education have an intrinsic value.... the ability to acquire knowledge and culture, is one of the fundamental purposes of civilization" (Picketty, p.308)."

"Policies to encourage broader access to universities are indispensable and crucial... in the United States and elsewhere" (Picketty, p.314).


The Purpose of Higher Education

The Enlightenment opinion was that education should be broadening and enlightening, freeing people from the despotism and ignorance of others. It should teach people to think critically, read critically, and base their thinking on facts and the scientific method. It should mature their thinking and expand their lives.

Our founding fathers had this kind of education in mind when they created our country: a land filled with rational and educated people able to make decisions and vote for the good of the country and their fellow citizens.

Today, corporations are trying to take over both education at all levels and the rationale for being educated. They want to "train" people to be good workers. No consideration for the larger needs of democracy or society for responsible citizens. No consideration for the happiness and independence of the individual being "trained."

Following the corporate model, many universities have completely lost the Enlightenment vision of an expansive and illuminating education. Most of the courses are taught by Teaching Assistants, not Professors (the for-profit model). The curricula offered to students no longer focus on a rounded or liberal education. Much of what is taught is aimed at the student getting a job and "serving" a corporation, not maturing his/her intellect or teaching him/her to think for themselves. The result is a poorly educated, gullible "worker" with some skills.

Worst of all, the curriculum has been gutted. Many courses required in the past for expanding the student's world and making them independent learners and thinkers have been eliminated.

No foreign languages ("... it has been abundantly proved that there is no more effective means of strengthening the mind than by the earnest pursuit of [the Latin language]" (D'ooge, p. 4)..."You live a new life for every new language you speak. If you know only one language, you live only once." (Czech proverb)... "The limits of my language are the limits of my universe." (Ludwig Wittgenstein).

No liberal arts (liberal = worthy of or suitable for a free person (St. Augustine)). The liberal arts "prepare a person to be an active and responsible citizen, capable of participating articulately and reasonably in civic and political activities... People who study the Liberal arts acquire the following capacities: proficiency and patience for hearing others on their own terms, wisdom and compassion for fairly weighing and critically evaluating competing priorities, clarity and gracefulness for communicating and reasoning with those who do not share one's beliefs and values, as well as creativity and imagination in searches for compromise" (Jones).

Certain subjects should be required for an undergraduate degree so that the student ends up with a broad knowledge of things and an ability to question all things. Specialization and skills can come with graduate work.

Due to the corporate model: profits first, tuitions have gone up drastically, as have the prices of books. All this "growth" has been dumped on the backs of students who will be deeply in debt when they graduate. Is this how we should be treating our children?

Polititians and corporations say that this is the way things have to be. But is it working? I say things need to be changed. Ignore the bloviations of such clueless leaders and dream about a country in which EVERYONE has a chance to go to college. EVERYONE gets a shot at the American dream. EVERYONE enjoys an improved economy, with war expenses diverted to healthcare, education, and other human rights.

"The rich love to demonize the poor [They say that the poor are poor because they are lazy, they have no initiative, they don't work hard enough.], but it turns out that the wealthy are the ones who need a little shaming. Paul Buchheit over at Alternet compiled various reports, studies, and analyses, and found clear evidence that the poor are way more ethical than the one percent [the extremely wealthy]. In fact, after reviewing all the data, Paul found clear correlations between wealth and unethical behavior [they're obscenely rich because they didn't play by the rules or pay their taxes], between wealth and a lack of empathy [Who cares if our employees can't live on what we pay them? Why should we help our neighbor when they encounter misfortune?], and between wealth and being unproductive [Why work when you can sit around and collect interest on your capital?]. In other words, the rich work less, care less, and cheat more often than the working poor" (Hartmann).

What these studies mean is that the super rich are completely focused on themselves, willing to lie, cheat, do anything to get what they want. They don't care about others at all. Their goal is to destroy everything good and just in the U.S. and the world because it might interfere with getting richer or even force them to face the consequences of their actions. Their method is to blame the rest of us for all the disasters their actions create. For many of the wealthiest, the route to more riches is through warfare, dumping the costs on the taxpayers and the consequences on our children. They, of course, don't pay taxes or fight in wars.

"Their stated and open aim is to strip from government all its functions except those that reward their rich and privileged benefactors... It is the most radical assault on the notion of one nation, indivisible, that has occurred in our lifetime... they bask in the company of the new corporate aristocracy, as privileged a class as we have seen since the plantation owners of antebellum America and the court of Louis XIV. What I can't explain is the rage of these counterrevolutionaries to dismantle every last brick of the social contract..." (Moyers).

The really wealthy are totally against education. They don't want people thinking for themselves [see Critical Thinking --"Who knows most, doubts most." (Robert Browning). They might start to question the textbooks and facts re-written by the conservatives to obscure reality (Marcotte). They might start to question the capitalism/free market myth ("We do not have free market capitalism in America; we have crony capitalism" (Kupfer)). They might start to question the standard excuse [lie] for war--Patriotism. They might even refuse to go to war and die for the rich [see Military Draft]. Worst of all, they might actually question the rich ["In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act" (George Orwell).. The rich HATE being questioned; they are used to being obeyed and catered to.

"Einstein recognized that the machinations of a small group of men partially explain a penchant for war. The men who control the industries, the press and the church gain wealth and power by war. What he could not understand was how the majority, which had so much to lose, succumbed to their ploys so easily" (Jacoby). Note: the quality of education in the United States is sinking rapidly.

The military only takes young people because they know that young people, not yet educated by a liberal higher education or by life, will more readily believe their propaganda, follow orders, and not question what's going on around them, like war crimes, torture, and orders which are illegal in the International Court of Justice.

The first step to fixing this mess is to better educate EVERYONE qualified by making higher education free. When people know how to get the facts and think critically for themselves, they will find ways to question authority and the status quo, and fix society's problems. Without the advantage of a liberal education, they will continue to be at the mercy of the rich, the corporations, the banks, and the leaders going the wrong direction.


12 Theses on Education in the Age of Neoliberalism and Terrorism By Jeffrey R. Di Leo, Henry A. Giroux, Kenneth J. Saltman, and Sophia A. McClennen, Paradigm Publishers, 2014 [book review] — "The goal of neoliberal education policies is not to improve education, but rather to increase the profits of private corporations. As long as the United States continues to view educational policy and practice through the lens of market-based values, there is little hope that progressive education, with its aim of educating students for critical citizenship and social and economic justice, will survive."

Petition

If you want things to change, please sign the petition to make higher education free for students and increase the economy for everyone. Make Higher Education Free.

 

LATEST UPDATES

Germany just eliminated tuition, while Americans are drowning in $1.2 trillion student loan debt. 10/3/14... "Germany has just joined other nations of the Continental European Union to eliminate all university tuition, as a human right. This comes in addition to the fact that all countries in the European Union as a human right have some type of medical access for all of its citizens, yet on these benchmarks the United States continues to lag far behind...

" the German government does care enough about your family as a human right to give you a free university education, even if you've never been to Germany and never paid any taxes to the German government, all you got to do is come to Germany. Oh by the way, you also get access for yourself and your family members to a student health medical plan which has no deductibles, and doesn't have pre-existing conditions, and that is the difference between a government working for working class people, as opposed to the best government money can buy, who works overwhelmingly for the 1%.

"Prospective students in the United States who can’t afford to pay for college or don’t want to rack up tens of thousands in student debt should try their luck in Germany. Higher education is now free throughout the country, even for international students."

Attention, American Students: Tired of Prohibitive Debt? Germany Has Now Abolished ALL Tuition Fees 10/2/14. "man-oh-man, if I had realized when I was young that I could have had an opportunity to enroll in a major, accredited university but didn't have to pay ANY tuition -- and all I had to do was to move to Europe -- I would have done it in a heartbeat.

"“We got rid of tuition fees because we do not want higher education which depends on the wealth of the parents,” Gabrielle Heinen-Kjajic, the minister for science and culture in Lower Saxony, said in a statement. Her words were echoed by many in the German government. “Tuition fees are unjust,” said Hamburg’s senator for science Dorothee Stapelfeldt. “They discourage young people who do not have a traditional academic family background from taking up study. It is a core task of politics to ensure that young women and men can study with a high quality standard free of charge in Germany.”"

"The U.S. as whole could take a note from Germany and make public universities free with relative ease. The government spends around $69 billion subsidizing college education and another $107.4 billion on student loans. Tuition at all public universities comes to much less than that, around $62.6 billion in 2012. By restructuring the education budget, the cost of attending public universities could easily be brought down to zero. This would also put pressure on private universities to lower their cost in order to be more competitive."

The library is the last, best socialized institution in America today and you're about to lose it As an American librarian I am glad to be living in the European Union where library funding isn't under attack to the extent that it is back home in the United States, because readership, literacy and an open based knowledge system that is publicly funded is still valued. In America, library budgets have become low hanging fruit for conservative local and state politicians.Louisiana is the worse case in point where Gov. Bobby Jindal has eliminated state library funding all together. Not only does it beg the question will your state be next but it asks the question what will you do when they come for your library and your kid's summer reading program?

Please let's remember the voluminous studies that have been done year after year, decade after decade that show us that prison inmates for the most part are functionally illiterate and that teen pregnancy is directly linked to literacy rates.

According to UNICEF: "Nearly a billion people will enter the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names and two thirds of them are women."

People who don't grow up as lifelong readers grow up in an America living under a form of de facto censorship and what it means is that the censor, by withholding library funding, limits access to reading materials to children from a young age. So they don't get to see the other side of the coin and wind up developing a one-sided point of view which has been historically associated with sexism, homophobia, racial bigotry and other forms of intolerance and hate. If we don't support libraries, we support going backwards in a type of devolution of the past which is exactly what the Tea Party types mean when they say they want their country back.

My question to you Mr or Mrs Progressive America, just how far back in time will you let the haters take us?... it's not the progressive America that we've come to love and aspire to, because that America is supported by your neighborhood library as an open knowledge learning center, where everyone is treated the same. It doesn't matter if it's the mayor or a homeless person, you can expect to receive the same level of service. You can expect to have access to a collective repository of everyone whose ever thought and everyone whose ever written, that's why I became a librarian and a reader and a listener and someone who you can count on to resist censorship in all of its guises. That includes false arguments related to library funding.

If We Put an End to Corporate Welfare, College Tuition Could Be Free

"Your best teacher is your last mistake" --Ralph Nader

Humboldtian model of higher education a concept of academic education that emerged in the early 19th century and whose core idea is a holistic combination of research and studies. Sometimes called simply the Humboldtian Model, it integrates the arts and sciences with research to achieve both comprehensive general learning and cultural knowledge, and it is still followed today. Based on humanistic principles

Bildung Bildung (German for "education" and "formation") refers to the German tradition of self-cultivation wherein philosophy and education are linked in a manner that refers to a process of both personal and cultural maturation. This maturation is described as a harmonization of the individual’s mind and heart and in a unification of selfhood and identity within the broader society, as evidenced with the literary tradition of bildungsroman.

How far to free? How much would it cost to make every public two- and four-year college and university in the United States tuition-free for all students? Much less than you think... According to our estimate, after stripping off the amount that the government already spends to subsidize higher education — including at predatory for-profit institutions — the total amount of new money necessary would be as little as $15 billion a year. Fifteen billion is a lot of money, to be sure, but within the scope of the federal budget it is a fraction of one percent of yearly spending — merely a rounding error.

Some will say this is a utopian proposition. But virtually every other industrialized nation (and many a developing country) has managed to offer free public higher education for decades. Even in this era of fiscal austerity, governments in countries as disparate as Germany and Chile have recently announced they are eliminating tuition costs altogether.

We Need to End the Student Loan Debt Crisis

Higher Education and the Politics of Disruption, Posted on Mar 21, 2015 By Henry A. Giroux, Truthout.

What has become clear is that the attack on the social state, workers and unions is now being matched by a full-fledged assault on higher education. Such attacks are not happening just in the United States but in many other parts of the globe where casino capitalism is waging a savage battle to eliminate all of those public spheres that might offer a glimmer of opposition to and protection from market-driven policies, institutions, ideology and values.

We live at a time when it is more crucial than ever to believe that the university is both a public trust and social good. At best, it is a critical institution infused with the promise of cultivating intellectual insight, the imagination, inquisitiveness, risk-taking, social responsibility and the struggle for justice. In addition, higher education should be at the “heart of intense public discourse, passionate learning, and vocal citizen involvement in the issues of the times.”

As higher education’s role as a center of critical thought and civic engagement is devalued, society is being transformed into a “spectacular space of consumption” and financial looting. One consequence is an ongoing flight from mutual obligations and social responsibilities and a loss of faith in politics itself.

Central to this view of higher education in the United States is a market-driven paradigm that seeks to eliminate tenure, turn the humanities into a job preparation service and transform most faculty members into an army of temporary subaltern labor. For instance, in the United States out of 1.5 million faculty members, 1 million are “adjuncts who are earning, on average, $20K a year gross, with no benefits or healthcare, and no unemployment insurance when they are out of work.” The indentured service status of such faculty is put on full display as some colleges have resorted to using “temporary service agencies to do their formal hiring.” A record number of adjuncts are now on food stamps and receive some form of public assistance.

Higher Education and the Promise of Insurgent Public Memory, Posted on Mar 9, 2015 By Henry A. Giroux, Truthout. both political parties, anti-public intellectual pundits and mainstream news sources view the purpose of higher education almost exclusively as a workstation for training a global workforce, generating capital for the financial elite, and as a significant threat to the power of the military, corporate and ultra-rich

As difficult as it may seem to believe, John Dewey’s insistence that “democracy needs to be reborn in each generation, and education is its midwife” was once taken seriously by many academic leaders. Today, it is fair to see that Dewey’s once vaunted claim has been willfully ignored, forgotten or made an object of scorn.

Throughout the 20th century, there have been flashpoints in which the struggle to shape the university in the interest of a more substantive democracy was highly visible. Those of us who lived through the 1960s ... the university presented itself as a site of struggle. That is, it served, in part, as a crucial public sphere that held power accountable, produced a vast array of critical intellectuals, joined hands with the antiwar and civil rights movements and robustly challenged what Mario Savio once called “the machine” ... The once vibrant spirit of resistance that refused to turn the university over to corporate and military interests is captured in Savio’s moving and impassioned speech on December 2, 1964...

Conservatives were deeply disturbed by the campus revolts and viewed them as a threat to their dream worlds of privatization, deregulation, militarization, capital accumulation and commodification. What soon emerged was an intense struggle for the soul of higher education.

... the Powell Memo was released on August 23, 1971, and authored for the Chamber of Commerce by Lewis F. Powell Jr., who would later be appointed as a member of the US Supreme Court. Powell identified the US college campus “as the single most dynamic source” for producing and housing intellectuals “who are unsympathetic to the [free] enterprise system.” He recognized that one crucial strategy in changing the political composition of higher education was to convince university administrators and boards of trustees that the most fundamental problem facing universities was the lack of conservative educators, or what he labeled the “imbalance of many faculties.”

The Powell Memo was designed to develop a broad-based strategy, not only to counter dissent but also to develop a material and ideological infrastructure with the capability to transform the US public consciousness through a conservative pedagogical commitment to reproduce the knowledge, values, ideology and social relations of the corporate state. Not only did the Powell Memo understand and take seriously the educative nature of politics, it also realized that if a crisis of economics was not matched by a crisis of ideas, it was easier to reproduce a society in which conformity could be bought off through the swindle of a neoliberal mantra that used the discourse of freedom, individuality, mobility and security to serve the interests of the rich and powerful. The Powell Memo was the most influential of one of a number of ideological interventions in the 1970s that developed political roadmaps to crush dissent, eliminate tenure and transform the university into an adjunct of free-market fundamentalism.

The Public Intellectual Project Critical education for a global democracy

Higher Education and the New Brutalism
By Henry A. Giroux, Public Intellectuals Project Director

Across the globe, a new historical conjuncture is emerging in which the attacks on higher education as a democratic institution and on dissident public voices in general – whether journalists, whistleblowers or academics – are intensifying with sobering consequences. The attempts to punish prominent academics such as Ward Churchill, Steven Salaita and others are matched by an equally vicious assault on whistleblowers such as Chelsea Manning, Jeremy Hammond and Edward Snowden, and journalists such as James Risen. (1) Under the aegis of the national surveillance-security-secrecy state, it becomes difficult to separate the war on whistleblowers and journalists from the war on higher education – the institutions responsible for safeguarding and sustaining critical theory and engaged citizenship.

In fact, the right-wing defense of the neoliberal dismantling of the university as a site of critical inquiry in many countries is more brazen and arrogant than anything we have seen in the past and its presence is now felt in a diverse number of repressive regimes...

Why the Right-Wing Is as Obsessed with Brainwashing Your Kid as With Looting Social Security it's our history of progressive change that makes Conservatives hate accurate depictions of our past... Many of the today's biggest political issues, like our privacy rights, would not even be up for debate today had it not been for the attack on education. If more Americans had had a strong understanding of our history, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney would have never been able to pull off the Patriot Act. And, we wouldn't be discussing the Orwellian government spy agencies like the NSA in this day and age.

Higher Ed, Not Debt

5 Devastating Facts About Charter Schools You Won't Hear from the 'National School Choice Week' Propaganda Campaign

Greed Kings of 2014: How They Stole from Us, byPaul Buchheit As schools and local governments are going broke around the country, companies who built their businesses with American research and education and technology and infrastructure are paying less in taxes than ever before. It's not just greed, it's theft.

Education: The Global Antidote to Poverty, Disease, and Terrorism, by César Chelala Girls’ education not only empowers them, but is also considered the best investment in a country’s development.

There is a clear connection between poverty and a lack of education... Governments tend to spend less on public education -the kind of schooling that tends to benefit mostly the poor- particularly in developing countries, during times of economic crises.

In regard to terrorism, one question notably absent from the discussion on this phenomenon are the reasons behind it, and why it has increased so markedly in recent years. Although many countries suffer this problem, it seems to be aimed to a large extent against the U.S. One cannot avoid thinking how the foreign policies of the U.S. have been a major cause.

Among those policies are: the presence of U.S. troops in Arab countries; the U.S. support for dictatorships throughout the world; the widespread use of torture and humiliation in U.S. prisons, particularly against prisoners from Arab countries; and the unconditional U.S. support for Israel’s policies in the Middle East to the detriment of Palestinians’ rights and aspirations.

Rather than trying to understand those reasons, the U.S. has led a brutal war against those it perceives as terrorists, killing thousands of innocent people in a state of unending war of enormous economic cost. Rather than eliminating terrorists these policies are only fueling the creation of new ones. As Malala Yousafzai, the 17-year-old Nobel Peace Laureate Pakistani young woman told President Obama: “While guns only kill terrorists education kills terrorism.”

Language skills change how your brain works The languages you speak — even the ones you may have heard when you were just an infant — have a lasting effect on how your brain processes information, researchers find.

Chomsky: How the Young Are Indoctrinated to Obey Forty years ago there was deep concern that the population was breaking free of apathy and obedience. Since then, many measures have been taken to restore discipline

How Capitalist Germany Made College Possible for Everyone, While It Seems Impossible in America: Clearly it's possible. by Barbara Kehm.

Everyone in America Could Go to College for Free for the Amount of Money Spent on Mideast Wars

Chomsky: Thinking Like Corporations is Harming American Universities: There’s been a very sharp increase in the proportion of administrators to faculty and students in the last 30-40 years.

Germany Makes College Education Free as American Students Drown in Debt "Free education is a concept that is embraced in most of Europe with notable exceptions like the U.K., where the government voted to lift the cap on university fees in 2010. The measure has reportedly cost more money than it brought in... While there are many government measures that could ease the massive burden of student debt, some straightforward steps could make higher education accessible to all. Tennessee, for example, recently voted to make two-year colleges free for all high school graduates. The U.S. as whole could take a note from Germany and make public universities free with relative ease. "

Germany just eliminated tuition, while Americans are drowning in $1.2 trillion student loan debt. 10/3/14... "Germany has just joined other nations of the Continental European Union to eliminate all university tuition, as a human right. This comes in addition to the fact that all countries in the European Union as a human right have some type of medical access for all of its citizens, yet on these benchmarks the United States continues to lag far behind...

" the German government does care enough about your family as a human right to give you a free university education, even if you've never been to Germany and never paid any taxes to the German government, all you got to do is come to Germany. Oh by the way, you also get access for yourself and your family members to a student health medical plan which has no deductibles, and doesn't have pre-existing conditions, and that is the difference between a government working for working class people, as opposed to the best government money can buy, who works overwhelmingly for the 1%.

"Prospective students in the United States who can’t afford to pay for college or don’t want to rack up tens of thousands in student debt should try their luck in Germany. Higher education is now free throughout the country, even for international students." Attention, American Students: Tired of Prohibitive Debt? Germany Has Now Abolished ALL Tuition Fees 10/2/14. "man-oh-man, if I had realized when I was young that I could have had an opportunity to enroll in a major, accredited university but didn't have to pay ANY tuition -- and all I had to do was to move to Europe -- I would have done it in a heartbeat.

"“We got rid of tuition fees because we do not want higher education which depends on the wealth of the parents,” Gabrielle Heinen-Kjajic, the minister for science and culture in Lower Saxony, said in a statement. Her words were echoed by many in the German government. “Tuition fees are unjust,” said Hamburg’s senator for science Dorothee Stapelfeldt. “They discourage young people who do not have a traditional academic family background from taking up study. It is a core task of politics to ensure that young women and men can study with a high quality standard free of charge in Germany.”"

"The U.S. as whole could take a note from Germany and make public universities free with relative ease. The government spends around $69 billion subsidizing college education and another $107.4 billion on student loans. Tuition at all public universities comes to much less than that, around $62.6 billion in 2012. By restructuring the education budget, the cost of attending public universities could easily be brought down to zero. This would also put pressure on private universities to lower their cost in order to be more competitive."

Professors on Food Stamps: The Shocking Exploitation of Toilers in the Ivory Tower: Three quarters of college professors are adjunct—many don't even earn minimum wage.

Is College Worth It? College graduates are also significantly more likely to report higher job satisfaction and career fulfillment than their peers with less education. Of course, there are plenty of exceptions to every rule; but generally speaking, data shows that more people in college is a good thing.

Paying for College in 1978 vs. Paying for College Now video

Is College Worth It? some data indicates that college graduates will earn about $1 million more over the course of their lifetimes.

Bernie Sanders Poll 90.4% believe college should be free

Robert Reich: College Is a Waste for Millions of Kids -- There's a Better Way

Two States Make Community College Free Tennessee and Oregon.

Humboldtian model of higher education a concept of academic education that emerged in the early 19th century and whose core idea is a holistic combination of research and studies. Sometimes called simply the Humboldtian Model, it integrates the arts and sciences with research to achieve both comprehensive general learning and cultural knowledge, and it is still followed today. Based on humanistic principles

Bildung Bildung (German for "education" and "formation") refers to the German tradition of self-cultivation wherein philosophy and education are linked in a manner that refers to a process of both personal and cultural maturation. This maturation is described as a harmonization of the individual’s mind and heart and in a unification of selfhood and identity within the broader society, as evidenced with the literary tradition of bildungsroman.

Public Intellectual Project articles and info. about Henry A. Giroux et al.

Henry A. Giroux webpage

Public Intellectuals Project

Jim Hightower: For-Profit Colleges Get Rich By Sinking Students Into Debt--and Their Scam Is Financed By Our Tax Dollars Let's make higher education free to all.

Progressive Change Campaign Committee free HE

Colleges Flush With Cash Saddle Poorest Students With Debt A ProPublica analysis of newly available federal data shows that some of the nation’s wealthiest colleges are leaving their poorest students with plenty of debt.

New York University is among the country’s wealthiest schools. Backed by its $3.5 billion endowment, the school has built campuses in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai, invested billionsin SoHo real estate, and given its star faculty loans to buy summer homes.

But the university does less than many other schools when it comes to one thing: helping its poor students.

A ProPublica analysis based on new data from the U.S. Department of Education shows that students from low-income families graduate from NYU saddled with huge federal loans. The school’s Pell Grant recipients – students from families that make less than $30,000 a year – owe an average of $23,250 in federal loans after graduation.

NYU is not the only university with a billion-dollar endowment to leave its poorest students with heavy debt loads. More than a quarter of the nation’s 60 wealthiest universities leave their low-income students owing an average of more than $20,000 in federal loans.

This new data on student debt is drawn from numbers that the Obama administration assembled as part of a planned effort to create grades for every college. In the face of fierce lobbying from universities, the administration backed away, but has made much of the data public on a new website called College Scorecard. ProPublica has used that material to create Debt By Degrees, an interactive database that allows you to search information for almost 7,000 schools. The data provides an unprecedented level of detail on the financial burden that the poorest college students face, showing for the first time how much federal debt poor students take on compared to their wealthier peers, and how well these students are able to repay their loans. The database also shows how much graduates earn on average after leaving school.

The New Right-Wing College Lie: Students Become Liberal on Their Own, No One Is Indoctrinating Them on Campus while college faculty tend to be liberal, evidence suggests “going to college does not make students substantially more liberal."

But there’s another side to this story, one that shows just how much conservative rhetoric has distorted our impressions of teaching and learning at college. The idea that college students are indoctrinated neglects the fact that college students are capable of thinking for themselves, and provided the tools to do so.

We can start with the word “indoctrination,” which already presupposes the intent to convert someone to a certain ideology. As with words like “doctrine,” “docent,” and “doctor” (sorry M.D.s), the Latin root of “indoctrinate” is docere, “to teach.” As humans have long acknowledged, when we teach, we necessarily impart some combination of facts and value judgments, just as any other intellectual exercise—a study, a trial, an essay, a presentation—requires us to shape or frame the knowledge we want to investigate or communicate. Whether it flatters the liberal or the conservative, there’s no such thing as “raw data,” no such thing as a purely unbiased or un-ideological stance. There are only degrees of measure, of fairness, of critical thinking.

So colleges teach critical thinking, the ability to entertain the negation of an idea while also entertaining the idea itself, and thus to hold in suspension all the ways in which something might be true or valuable and all the ways in which it might not be. To “indoctrinate” is to imbue someone with a preferred idea. Critical thinking is the antidote to indoctrination, because critical thinking isn’t about affirming ideas in the first place, as indoctrinators do; it’s about questioning the ideas being affirmed and subjecting them to reason and evidence.

The fact that liberal people work on campus and liberal things happen on campus doesn’t mean college courses are instruments of liberal indoctrination.

Fighting Back, Students Rise Nationwide to Demand Debt-Free Higher Ed byDeirdre Fulton Published on Thursday, November 12, 2015 byCommon Dreams. "The United States is the richest country in the world, yet students have to take on crippling debt in order to get a college education."

Galvanized by a key plank in Bernie Sanders' presidential platform, current and former students from hundreds of colleges coast to coast are holding walk-outs, rallies, and marches on Thursday to call for tuition-free public college, a cancellation of all student debt, and a $15 minimum wage for all campus workers.

Noting that more than 40 million Americans share a total of $1.2 trillion in student debt and 58 percent of that is held by the poorest 25 percent of Americans, the organizers chastise "establishment politicians" for failing to take action in the face of what they call an "urgent crisis."

"Today we are dealing with a curriculum that reflects a corporate agenda, outrageous university tuitions and fees, massive student debt, and a K-12 public education system under attack by budget cuts, charter schools, standardized tests, and the school-to-prison-pipeline."

Clinton's Argument That Free College Is Bad Because Rich Kids Can Take Advantage of It Makes No Sense The same logic could apply to K-12 education, roads, parks, or any general public good.

The Nearly Free University & the Emerging Economy by Charles High Smith notes below are from the ad for the book on his site, Of Two Minds

College tuition and fees are up 1000% since 1980. Half of all recent college graduates are jobless or underemployed, revealing a deep disconnect between higher education and the job market.

It is no surprise everyone is asking: Where is the return on investment? Is the assumption that higher education returns greater prosperity no longer true? And if this is the case, how does this impact you, your children and grandchildren?

The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy clearly describes the underlying dynamics at work - and, more importantly, lays out a new low-cost model for higher education: how using digital technology will enable a revolution in higher education that dramatically lowers costs while expanding the opportunities for students of all ages.

Free College for All Worked in the US for 100 Years Until Elite Took It Away Bernie Sanders’ call for free public college is being called an unaffordable fantasy by Hillary Clinton, who opposes free college for those who can pay, but the reality is that college was free in the US for 100 years until the rich and powerful in Washington took it away in the 1960s. We had it once, and can have it again!

Job Training in America vs German [video] shocking differences.

This week, ATTN: explored job training in the United States vs. Germany, where youth unemployment is among the lowest in the world. The Germans have a different approach toward career preparedness after high school: they offer multi-year vocational training programs, which teach practical skills, such as electrical engineering, carpentry, and welding. Students also get on-the-job training as apprentices.

Even better, German companies pay 75 percent of the cost of these training programs, while the government covers the remaining 25 percent. This leaves graduates with virtually no student debt, unlike in U.S. where the average four-year college graduate owes about $30,000 in loans. If you think the U.S. should emulate this system, share ATTN:'s video here.

COMMENTS: Rosi Evans True. It's considered rude in Germany to ask at a gathering "what do you do for a living?" All kinds of work is respected.

Siona Longaevi Schneider In Germany, You can become really really successful having a Training as base instead of college. Companies often prefer people who are ambitous, Hard working and practically experienced and reward you for Hard work. Also, you already get pair from the beginning, in contrast to financing problems when in college.

Susan Fullar Absolutely true, France and England as well - and probably most of Europe. And these governments make this investment in their societies without thinking about it - with huge returns for everyone.

Bernd Boehmke I growth up in Germany and after finishing High School had a meeting with Counselors from Manpower Office to find a Apprenticeship in the Plumbing and Heating Trade which I took and finished (4 years ). Became a Trades Person and opened a Business which I had for long time and enjoyed til I retired.

Calvin Daack Germany also expunged its systemic racism after WWII, whereas America has yet to move past slavery. That also is what drives America's high youth unemployment. We need to be looking at the nation as a whole if we want to approach complete solutions.

Wesley S. Dickhaut In this country college is the "only" path to success because so many other choices are socially stigmatized for capatal gain...im a plumber...i have a house at 21 and am at Boston College paying out of pocket, but no one told me in high school that was an option. I decided against going to school right away and opened myself up to the options that were opportunistic to my individual abilities and potential, as everyone should....


References

Bennett, Michael J. 1996. When Dreams Come True: The GI Bill and the Making of Modern America. Washington, D.C.: Brassey's Inc.

CBS News. How The GI Bill Changed America. Accessed 6/1/2014.

D'ooge, Benjamin L. Latin for Beginners. Boston, Ginn & Co., 1909.

GI Bill Economic Return (http://www.freehighered.org/h_faqs.html, accessed in 1988 [site no longer works]).

Hartmann, Thom. The Poor Are More Ethical Than the 1%. Accessed 6/2/2014.

Hightower, Jim and Frazer, Phillip, eds. The Hightower Lowdown, July 2004.

Jacoby, Russell. "The War That Never Was." The Nation, Dec. 20, 2004: 31.

Jones, Nicholaos. Liberal Arts, and the Advantages of Being Useless. Accessed June 4, 2014.

Kupfer, David. "[Interview with] Robert F. Kennedy Jr." The Progressive, Nov. 2006: 33-36).

Leddy, Chuck. BOOK REVIEW: A critical look at the GI Bill’s impact . Accessed 6/2/2014.

Leslie, Larry L., and Paul T. Brinkman. The Economic Value of Higher Education. NY: Macmillan, 1988.

Marcotte, Amanda. 4 Inconvenient Facts Conservatives Conveniently Ignore: Rewriting history is standard operating procedure on the right. Accessed 6/5/2014.

Mettler, Suzanne. HOW THE G.I. BILL BUILT THE MIDDLE CLASS AND ENHANCED DEMOCRACY. Accessed 6/2/2014.

Moyers, Bill. "This is Your Story. Pass It On." Texas Observer, 8/13/04: 4-9, 38.

Piketty, Thomas. Translated from French by Arthur Goldhammer. Capital In the Twenty-First Century. Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2014.

Tuchman, Gave. Wnnabe U: Inside the Corporate University. University of Chicago Press, 2009.

United Nations. International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Accessed 5/27/2014.

Washburn, Jennifer. University, Inc.: The Corporate Corruption of Higher Education. Basic Books, 2006.

Slavehood 2017 By Peter Koenig [an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America.] May 04, 2017 "Information Clearing House"

When in the 18th and 19th Century African slaves did not ‘behave’, they were cruelly beaten sometimes to death as a deterrent for others. They were deprived of food for their families. Their women were raped. They were traded to even harsher white masters. Their lives were worth only what their labor could produce. They were treated as subjects, devoid of human warmth.

Today we have become all slaves; slaves to the powers of mafia bankster of finance; slaves to the western lie-propaganda; to the lobbies and their giant all dominating corporations – to the war-industry, because we happily believe what we are told about ever-increasing terrorism that needs to be fought with eternal wars; slaves to the environment-destructive hydrocarbon industry; to the pharma-industry; to the Monsanto-ized agroindustry; to senseless consumerism – and foremost – and summing it all up: to greed, endless greed that drives endless growth, nurturing endless competition fomenting adversity, destroying solidarity, instead of amical cooperation for a harmonious human cohabitation.

As people of western nations, we are enslaved to an all-engulfing neoliberal fascism – to a predatory economy. Corporate lie propaganda drip-feds our brains. We haven’t even noticed it. We are enslaved to so-called ‘leaders’, put in office by obscure foreign masters of deceit – the ever-stronger corporate controlled propaganda machine – the six all controlling Zion-Anglo media, whom we believe whatever lie they vomit – because it is more comfortable to believe a lie than to confront the truth – that’s self-imposed slavehood.

That’s how far we have gone. Because we are clearly on an almost irreversible downward track – sliding and running towards our own demise – into darkness – the darkness of chaos and bloody wars, endless wars against self-invented terrorism; wars that keeps our western economy running – and our armchair politics alive. Wars that kill and slaughter millions and millions – but all in ‘far-away’ lands. We are told we are protected. Our police and military watch over us. The new gods – money and military.

Although ‘pride’ was never an appropriate term to integrate our soul and minds, as we the western powers – have for centuries enslaved, raped, exploited and slaughtered the indigenous people, those who have for millennia, for history of mankind survived and passed on our human genes from one murderous civilization to another, always in the hope that the new one would see the light.

We can only hope that the patience of these native people, the survivors, our saviors – will prevail, that before we disappear in darkness, in the void of a manmade blackhole, we will awake, open our eyes and seek the light – become finally human, the term we have fraudulently applied to ourselves – the western civilization.

Independent thinking has become a crime, as it impedes the advancement of slavehood. Education is designed to kill individual thinking and the wide range of inventiveness – because it’s dangerous – for those who enslave and control us. ‘New-speak’ education has to make us thinking what the system wants us to think. That’s what western education has become in the last 50 years – a farce to keep us as non-thinking idiots.

Idiots are easily enslaved and exploited and sent to wars – to steal foreign resources to satisfy the greed of a few. We love to be cannon fodder, as we were told – enslaved – to believe that good patriots love to die for their country. We are blinded and avoid seeing that we are dying fighting to satisfy puppet leaders’ greed for power and money – whose power is nothing more than that allowed them by the Masters who control the world and who pull the strings on their marionettes.


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Send comments to co@dadbyrn.com, Colby Glass, MLIS, Professor Emeritus