Monday, November 14, 2016

Crush the Universities

When I wrote on using community service as a requirement for waiving some student debt, it was to get some form of service for burning money. What the Trump GOP should do is go after the universities. I do not trust much will change, but why not shoot high. Right now, Americans want the college system to become more affordable. What they hear as a solution is "more affordable loans" and "greater access to loans". This is hogwash, and the public is upset at how much of a rip off college is. The public also has an inkling of how insane colleges have become, including diversity of opinion problems. The right should take advantage of this opportunity to go after them.

I will link and copy and paste from Jim's post on going after them and then add my own bits. Jim hits hard on this as a way to fuck with them.

But before he gets to making Saturday Night Live funny again, has to get to redevelop Harvard into shops, condos, hotels, and offices. 
Currently we have an elaborate system where committees give grants to people who are on committees. This renders power and funding untraceable and difficult to control. To drain the swamp, has to run government money through a direct hierarchy operating on das F├╝hrerprinzip.   
So the Dean of a university should be appointed by the board, the Dean should have the power to hire and fire professors, and all academic funding should go through university, which is to say through the dean. If the Pentagon wants a professor at MIT to research something, it should pay MIT, not the professor. 
We should abolish tenure. Tenure was supposed to make professors proudly independent and capable of dissent, but instead every single academic at every single institution grovels. When the line changes, every professor changes his position and instantly forgets that the line was different yesterday. The line emerges from an amorphous mass of committees, obscuring who has power and who makes decisions. 
Outside funding of academics should be seen as corrupting. Would Steve Jobs be happy if one of his executives received large payments from a committee containing people connected to a competing company? All funding should go directly through the board and Dean/CEO. 
And when we have replaced hidden lines of authority with direct lines of authority, on das F├╝hrerprinzip, we can then hold those with that authority responsible for what they do with it. 
After getting rid of committees and outside funding, which hides who has power and who makes decisions, then and only then can we purge academia.

This is pretty sharp. Remember that the last industry practicing like a Medieval guild is academia. Jim is going right after the priest class. This is smart. Trump should also take advantage of state governments going after rich endowments like some brewing battles in New England. People can weaken then financially, and honestly why stop with that angle. Start using "burdened students in debt slavery" as a means to destroy the universities.

1. Work on an economic policy that returns some manufacturing here. This could be accomplished with the multinational cash repatriation issue if Trump cuts a deal that returns cash at a lower tax rate but in exchange, they must relocate some jobs here. This hurts the demand for university degrees.

2. Come to some deal on the outstanding debt, but if we wipe it off, community service must be a portion of it and other debt must return to the schools. If this kills the University of Phoenix and some other for profits (and weaker non-profits) that are enrollment mills, so be it. Note that new investors would buy UofPhoenix and adjust how it is run. Remember the universities hate you.

3. Reform student debt to switch from nondischargable to the Reagan era 7 year discharge rule. Also add a provision that 10% of all loan principal that is defaulted on goes back to the university to pay. While rates would rise + media would spin "oh loans are worse now", Trump could spin this as "Ending Modern Day Slavery". This reduces student loans and number of people loading up and attending. universities lay off workers? Fuck them, they hate you.

4. Break the union. Every school has their union negotiate a collective bargaining agreement that allows for lavish benefits, lavish sabbatical rules, and countless other fantastic things you do not get. In many academic minimum employment contracts they have zero minimum hours per week but class minimum requirements. This is supposedly to allow for the swing in hours but it is also to allow for professors to teach one class, which they skip entirely or flub through and still collect the check. Destroy the union by saying that it is unfair for families to pay for the fattening of union purses in an industry that cannot be outsourced.

It's not just altering the priests but destroying demand for education and altering supply of loans. How many schools pull back enrollment if they have to worry about assuming defaulted debt? How many loans are NOT made if default risk returns? How many people to you affect on the margin? Every person you pull out of the university system is a win. it is four fewer years of indoctrination and potential for poz infection via supposed authority, sanctioned figures.

Jim wants to go after the priests. I want to reduce the number attending mass. Why not both?


Angry Midwesterner said...

Obama surprisingly and maybe inadvertently laid some groundwork for how our universities are failing their students with his college scorecard initiative. At least, that can be used as justification for gutting the low end schools who poison the poorer kids among us.
For the upper end schools, they are turning a lot more to grant-based aid, so punishing Harvard or Stanford is going to be a lot harder when their students, even the affirmative actioned ones aren't coming out drained into debt slavery.
The ones that can be attacked more directly are the safety school tier with 50k tuitions and 0 Wall Street connections with your plan: the Boston Colleges, the George Washingtons, etc. They were shameless about soliciting donations for their endowment and construction projects, and they are a lot more shameless about taking full paying students.
Then there are those massive state school systems. I want to see how Scott Walker's attack on the UW system works out, but it can be a start or a proof of concept.

Portlander said...

Right now, Americans want the college system to become more affordable. What they hear as a solution is "more affordable loans" and "greater access to loans". This is hogwash,

Damn straight. It is just like Obamacare bait and switch. People wanted affordable health care, but the entire debate was around affordable health insurance. Of course in the end, and not for the first time, attempting to trade one for thing for another gets you neither.

I was an an alma mater meeting a while back. They were talking tuition prices and starting salaries. Long story short, in ~25 yrs, tuitions are up by a factor of 4, while starting salaries are up by a factor of 2. And that is for a top-tier engineering school with some, but far less than average in the way of private school false pretences. And they carve out 15% of the slots for foreign nationals, half of which are Chinese, paying rack rate in an effort to subsidize the bottom 50%.

Health, housing, and education are the triumvirate of our broken economic system. And what do they have in common? All three are all but immune to outsourcing and technological improvements that allow for a papering over of the rot that (((Wall Street))) has created.

Glengarry said...

Prick the tuition bubble with some rough government. Academics love activist government so give them some, good and hard. As long as tuition is above what Old Economy Steve paid (and made over the summer), they should be writhing in pain. Their endowments are only used to fund lavish lifestyles for lesbians, so tax the hell out of them. Do some Dear Colleague Section IX style steering. Send some rape activists to jail. Close down unsavoury student associations and expel unsavoury students.

Don't stop until you have Made Universities Great Again.

Note: There is no need to be clever or passive-aggressively mock-fair about the rules like so many fantasies go. "You have to pay a luxury tax on non-white students according to a schedule defined in consultation with blah blah" No, just do it like FATCA: If you break our rules, 30% of the endowment goes. If your endowment is too small, we revoke your accreditation. Stop breaking the rules or we do it again next year.

Glengarry said...

What if they built a Cathedral and we burned it down? Peace, John Lennon.

John Morris said...

Good start. But let us not dream small in the age of Trump, when we should be dreaming of great things.

Cultural Marxism is the problem. If it isn't a religion, somebody explain why it isn't because it checks every single box. Formalize it. Agitate your State Legislature to pass a bill declaring it to be exactly that, a religion. This instantly means no State University can be running what is essentially a seminary in cultural Marxism, right? And no state tuition assistance can go toward it either, even at private universities. Bang, dead. Every * Studies program is dead, dead, dead.

Don't nibble around the edges, don't hurt them. Destroy them.

Glengarry said...

Rule the indoctrination classes to be optional for getting a degree.

Glengarry said...

There are also two social components to all this: First, universities deprive other locations of their human capital in well-known ways. They are therefore not necessarily a social good, potentially more of a zero-sum or even negative-sum game. As the percentage of youth getting a university degree increases, this problem also increases.

Second, I would also say that, on the personal plane, going away to university and getting a job somewhere far off and atomized is not necessarily a good or natural development for people, even if it short-term means you get to do drugs and sleep with strangers. Back home, you have those who are your family, and those who could have been your lifelong friends.

(Atomization is of course good for some social players. Might not be so great for the atomized ones though.)

High Arka said...

If we're going to fantasies about random orgies with attractive strangers, why make them seem "more realistic" by depicting some of the women as fat? What a letdown these pragmatic approaches to university terror are.

Universities cooperated with banks to scam millions of people out of money. Legislatively void all student debt, sell off administrator pension funds and university properties, toss the bank and university board members in jail under RICO, and it's bought and paid for. All of this milkwater reductionism, besides being totally cowardly, just begs for a bunch of players to get together and come up with new ways to make the new system work as well as the old.

Remember how the tobacco settlements ended up boosting tobacco advertising in a dwindling market, tax-free, by calling it "government mandated anti-tobacco programs"? Any options for dealing with the university scam that don't involve RICOing straight up to Congress and the Fed are only going to reward the architects and their spawn.

Minnesota Goon said...

It is a religion. Cultural Marxism (progressivism), is the Current Year nihilistic secular religion.

If what you're saying checks out, and I think it does despite being a bit drunk, universities would need to completely change their tone if Progressivism was recognized as an official religion. That whole separation of church and state thing.

Whiteness is the original sin. Apologizing for White Privilege is the first step in being a pious Progressive. Anything beyond that is up to people more enlightened than me.

Dave said...

My solution is simple: Allow only private lenders to make student loans, and forbid them to take one dime out of the first $40,000 of a debtor's annual income. If the borrower can't graduate and find a job that pays over $40,000 a year, the lender must eat the loss with no bailout.

This would re-orient higher education toward degree programs that lead to high-paying jobs and students capable of completing those programs. To attract e.g. the best engineering students, schools will promise not to waste their time on unrelated subjects like history, literature, sociology, psychology, etc.

High Arka said...

They don't teach history and literature anymore; they teach brief summaries of the viewpoints you're supposed to have. If they actually taught those subjects, Dave would probably approve of the result.