Freeman

ANYTHING PEACEFUL

About Those English Student Protests

DECEMBER 16, 2010 by SHELDON RICHMAN

The best thing I’ve read about the English student protests against reduced government subsidies for higher education is here. In “A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Waste,” Kevin Carson writes:

Aren’t these just a bunch of spoiled brats, throwing a tantrum when they’re cut off from the taxpayer teat?

Not exactly.

British students, like those in America, are hit from two directions under the state capitalist model: First, by government interventions that inflate the amount of the “education” commodity they’re forced to consume in order to make a decent living. And second, by government interventions that inflate the cost of procuring it.

So government has placed students in a double bind in which relying on government tuition subsidies is the only way out.

What does Carson propose?

The answer, first, is to eliminate all state-mandated licensing and credentialing, all college and technical school accreditation, and to dismantle higher education as a conveyor belt for processing human raw material for delivery to the appropriate HR department.

Educational offerings should be driven, on a demand-pull basis, by the desires of students, while all the state-created artificial scarcities that cause the wage labor market to be a buyer’s market should be eliminated.

Second, we should eliminate the high-overhead, cost-plus culture that predominates in the university (as in all other large institutions of state capitalist society).

There’s more. So read the full article.

ABOUT

SHELDON RICHMAN

Sheldon Richman is the former editor of The Freeman and TheFreemanOnline.org, and a contributor to The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics. He is the author of Separating School and State: How to Liberate America's Families.

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