Should university education be subsidized by the government?

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by funnystory, Feb 27, 2016.

  1. funnystory
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    funnystory Banned

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    Yesterday while posting in a different thread, I got into an interesting argument with a fellow GBAtemper on whether we should subsidize university education in America even for degrees that do NOT produce any money at all. I am going to keep this short in order to not bore and instead I hope to inspire a discussion with arguments over the issue at large. Should someone that worked their ass off in University(engineers,doctors,accountants,finance majors,science,computer science,ect) have to get taxed for students that essentially major in degrees that do not produce money like creative arts,liberal arts,psychology,humanitarian studies,ect? My argument is that an engineer that busted their balls doing difficult math should be entitled to keep their money since they earned it,why should society foot the bill for a 200,000 USD bill for a useless liberal arts degree? If you owned a farm and grew 100 tomatoes for your family to eat and you had blisters all over your body,should you be forced to hand over 50 of those tomatoes so that a man that was finger painting all day can have access to the same things you do?
     
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  2. Lacius

    Lacius GBAtemp Guru

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    A government provides the infrastructure with which consumerism can even exist. The government also subsidized many aspects of your life (roads, protection, etc.) leading up to this point. In addition, the government has policies that contribute to social mobility because any of us could have just as easily been someone who would have benefited from such programs.

    That being said, the government has a vested interest in incentivizing some degrees over others. I have no problem limiting public funds for some degrees or requiring specific post-graduation plans in order to receive funds.
     
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  3. Azel

    Azel GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    "useless degrees" ?
    OMG.
    (I'm french so I guess I can't relate or debate on this with you, but your statement really shock me, sorry)

    (also how humanitarian studies are useless ? (and yes, I have a degree in Computer Science Engeneering but I don't consider it more important than any other fields, don't wanna sound like an ass but I suppose you'd know arts and "useless" degrees are useful for your country and your country's culture...if it was more than a couple of centuries old, that is..)
     
    Last edited by Azel, Feb 27, 2016
  4. Dork

    Dork Newbie

    It would most likely induce a tax hike on the middle class, so no.

    Free ain't free.
     
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  5. funnystory
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    funnystory Banned

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    Your degree is more important because you provide something of value to society. If you were born in a poor family and had to take out loans,with your degree you could pay it back in 2-4 years MAX. If you chose to finger paint for 200k you wouldn't be able to pay it off even in 30+ years. I think those "fun" degrees should be left to those who are born to rich families.
     
  6. Azel

    Azel GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    I'm glad we don't really do the whole college loan thing in france then ^^'' (college is essentially free, like 200-400€/year, (private schools are different though))
     
  7. funnystory
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    funnystory Banned

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    I could be wrong,but I don't think france has the same amount of leeches that the USA has. There's people in the USA that adopt 10 kids to get over 100k a year from the government,we have some real degenerates in this country.
     
  8. Deboog

    Deboog GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    That's just absurd. There are almost no people who have children just for benefits in any country.
     
  9. vayanui8

    vayanui8 GBAtemp Maniac

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    There actually are unfortunately. I had an uncle who adopted a large amount of them in order to get payed by the government. There's a reason he was excommunicated from the family.
     
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  10. Deboog

    Deboog GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Of course some people are like that, but it's not enough to have a real impact on the national economy.
     
  11. sarkwalvein

    sarkwalvein More coffee, please!

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    Yes, we all should pay to facilitate the education of our society, so that in the future all of us can enjoy the benefits of we ourselves, and our neighbours and most people we deal with are educated and useful for society, and for us. (kind of utilitarian, but I don't care)
    I don't mean to make it free, but to make it accessible.
    Also, making efforts to prevent students to become "leeches" (in the sense that they don't go forward and get stuck wasting resources).

    Take as a bad example Argentina, high education is normally completely free but students tend to waste time and resources (I still believe it is better than the prohibitive model on the USA).
    Take as an OK example Germany, high education is highly subsided and accessible, but there are restrictions regarding how much time you can take to finish a degree.

    That all is IMHO.

    PS: Before anything, I am an engineer that "worked my ass off" in University, and I am completely OK with being taxed to subside education. The reason I am able to obtain money easily while some other people from other fields are not is because of the twisted way economics today promote everything related to manufacture and consumerism of banal goods and services, not really for science. Even so, people in humanistic fields also "work their asses off" in University and provide to society things that, while not well recognised economically, are in many occasions more relevant for our improvement as persons and society, you shouldn't look down on their value to society only because the twisted rules of money making (sometime a sickness for the society) don't benefit them.
    PS2: I don't think it is right how in (e.g.) Germany people that work in services area are paid way less that people that work in industry, for example. I am lucky to be in the industry side and people don't normally speak about it, but it is not right to look down on the work of e.g. grade school teachers, the people in whose hands you put (in great part) the education of your kids. (IMHO)
     
    Last edited by sarkwalvein, Mar 11, 2016
  12. funnystory
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    funnystory Banned

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    You are wrong,even if they don't adopt for money. There are certain social groups that have kids they cannot afford. The people that can most afford kids in America have the least amount of kids and the people that cannot have tons of kids.

    Take a look at this

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/en...um-wage-has-more-disposable-income-family-mak

    The system is broken.
     
  13. deinonychus71

    deinonychus71 GBAtemp Fan

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    Oh hey again :D.

    To my opinion:

    Money isnt the end of everything. It's a tool but it certainly doesnt make the society better.
    You need all kind of people, hell not just engineers, the world would be terrible (and I have a master degree in computer sciences myself).
    You need people to remind you of the past (specially with all the current hate between ethnicities...), need people to keep the society colorful and diversified, with art, with alternative visions of the world. It's just as important to evolve as a race than being able to build faster, more intelligent machines.


    Free school also provides this:
    Fair chance to everyone.
    No matter if your family is rich of not. You won't miss a talent just because they weren't lucky in life. It IS taking a risk. There is always the risk that some of them are lazy and don't work as seriously as they could (it's a problem we have in France, actually), but the point is, if you don't ever give them a chance, you will never know. And really, doesn't it feel like the right thing to do, anyway?
    I know it is a concept. So if you don't believe everyone should have the same chance in life, there's no point arguing, we basically just have to agree to disagree.

    Reduce violence.

    Guns isn't the answer to everything. By giving a fair chance to everyone, you basically eliminate the frustration that many teens may have by not getting the job they want, or any job at all, just because they couldn't pay for their studies. Frustrations is a precursor to violence. I don't say that it always happens because of it, but it certainly helps.

    I am not giving any economical argument, because to me they don't matter, it's not a question of "optimizing the money", it's about making the society better.


    People need to be less self-centered. As a European, I must say that Im still highly SHOCKED everytime I go to walmart to see almost everyone leaving their cart in the way, blocking everyone, and not giving a damn about it cause in fact, they don't even REALIZE it. That's a lack of education right there.
    And no, Im not saying that european countries are perfect, Ill gladly talk about it in another thread but this isnt the topic. We're talking about education and that's something I believe they are better for.

    If tomorrow I have to spend 5% of my incomes to help improving the general knowledge of my country, I will gladly do so. It won't make me homeless.
     
    Last edited by deinonychus71, Mar 11, 2016