How we can make college education 'free' for all who want it.

onlyTheObvious

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This reminds me a lot of the health care debate. Naysayers declare things unworkable, unreasonable, or impossible that are actually being done in most other developed nations.
Everybody would love cheaper healthcare.

nobody can make the math work. So we stay where we are at.

google says total United States payroll was 10 trillion last year. (Is that correct?)

google says we spent 4 trillion on healthcare.

that’s one big ass new tax. Even if you think the feds can administrate it cheaper it still a massive new tax. If you do it like social security and have employers and employees pay in equally it’s still huge.

you can have a nice conversation of who should earn less (doctors, nurses, ect).

I would like to see a state volunteer to try something but the math is damn ugly. Which is why nobody will talk real numbers.

I would have a national sales tax with no exclusions. Only way to get everybody to pay something.

I would also tax the fat more. Weigh in once a year to get a rebate back. Obesity is the biggest reason healthcare is expensive.

a law not allowing pharmaceutical to charge US citizens more than foreign countries get charge for same drug should also be made.
 
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unIowa

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All who want it? No.

College isn't for everyone. Skilled trades are vastly underrated, and are quickly closing the wage gap. Automotive Service Technicians at dealerships are making 6 figures.
Yeah…so all who want it. You don’t have to take the offer and if you don’t then no added tax. This would only be for the people who agree to the “free” college.
 

unIowa

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Make it free and a degree is worthless.

who sets tuition ? If I was UNI I would set tuition at $100,000. Government pays. It’s easy money.

my guess is “the bill” would be applauded and completely not paid for. Adding trillions more to the debt.

would you include private colleges? If not you just signed the execution orders on thousands of colleges and millions of jobs and destroyed thousands of communities.

2 years of junior college (online saves even more money) and two years at the state school you live in is not a lifelong financial nuclear bomb. If it is, you never should have gone to college and colleges need to weed out future students like you.

you would have to be a moron to pay a 5% tax the rest of your working life for free college. Run the numbers in a spreadsheet and assume you could take that 5% and get 7%-8% a year if invested.
I don’t disagree on reasons why you wouldn’t want to take it. I 100% agree with that but it is a much better option than loan forgiveness…the tax payers need to make an ROI on this investment.

Also…price increase riders/restrictions could be added to keep costs of university down. Also, many wouldn’t want to do this (as stated by you, and me) which would act as a counter balance to help keep costs down. If universities go with the run away cost models they essentially abandon anyone that wants to pay on their own without said assistance.
 

unIowa

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Ran some math on this using some assumptions.
1. Starting base salary for college graduates of $40,000 / year.
2. Annual raises of 2% per year. Those two numbers combine to make close to the $2.8MM career earnings for a college graduate that the OP mentioned.
3. Discount rate of 3%.
4. 85% of base salary left after SSI, Medicare, 401k.

Over a 45 year career, the actual extra 5% tax paid is about $122k. But the present value of the 5% extra tax that person paid to Uncle Sam is just about $60k. Do we as tax payers want to take that on? Ideally the positive value driven to society is higher than the extra $60k in taxes, so it should be worth it. That's the entire point of public schools. I could see this being a possible part of a proposal that combines with a way to limit the increase in cost of education at public schools. Dormitories shouldn't be "luxury palaces" that many of the new ones being built are but rather places that students can live for a few years(without roaches or mice).

For the arguments about funding public colleges better which I agree with, this would be a part of the way of paying for that funding. The problem is that many people think that they will be an exception that earns $250k per year and the career 5% will hurt them more than the average person, so they will be against it. Similar to the people against raising taxes on the wealthy because they might be wealthy some day, but don't understand how almost impossible it is to make it to that wealth level.

FINALLY someone that gets it and I was wondering IF anyone would. Ring up the PV factor of these future payments.

You my man get a gold star!
 

unIowa

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I like how people immediately jump into the weeds before actually contemplating the structure as a foundation to help getting people what they want.

For example;
1. People who have already paid for their own college aren’t really excited about taking on the burden of others (that’s human nature). This solves for that.
2. People think college costs are impossible and keeps them from achieving the highest version of themselves both personally and professionally. This solves for that.

Thats really the big 2, awesome, everything else (cost controls, qualifications, etc) can be figured out. The point is, do you want to bet on yourself or do you not. This basically eliminates a lot of excuses from everyone which is the goal plus it provides a realistic and valuable funding mechanism that can pay for itself. This means I don’t need to hear their silly bitching anymore…win baby!
 

LuciousBDragon

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The American Southwest
Average earnings for a bachelors degree is $2.8mm over ones working life (according to google search I just did). So if someone wants 'free education' they can get it, and they will 100% qualify regardless of their parents earnings. They only have to pay an added 5% tax on their gross income over their working career (SSI and IRA/401K income wouldn't need to pay this tax). This equates to $150k in payback to tax payers for the 'free' education they recieved.

Don't want to pay that 5% income tax over your working life, great, just pay for college yourself and you won't be subject to the tax. This is a win win solution and creates high investment in our youth with a funding mechinism that will create a positive feedback loop on itself. But it would be everyones choice on if they wanted to do it or not, and I am definately pro-choice.
Good intentioned, but there are way too many ways someone could legally show little to no income on their taxes and therefore pay no 5% tax.
 

theiacowtipper

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Everybody would love cheaper healthcare.

nobody can make the math work. So we stay where we are at.

google says total United States payroll was 10 trillion last year. (Is that correct?)

google says we spent 4 trillion on healthcare.

that’s one big ass new tax. Even if you think the feds can administrate it cheaper it still a massive new tax. If you do it like social security and have employers and employees pay in equally it’s still huge.

you can have a nice conversation of who should earn less (doctors, nurses, ect).

I would like to see a state volunteer to try something but the math is damn ugly. Which is why nobody will talk real numbers.

I would have a national sales tax with no exclusions. Only way to get everybody to pay something.

I would also tax the fat more. Weigh in once a year to get a rebate back. Obesity is the biggest reason healthcare is expensive.

a law not allowing pharmaceutical to charge US citizens more than foreign countries get charge for same drug should also be made.
According to the link I saw, 1/3 of that amount is already funded by government. So lower that amount you quoted. In addition, workers currently pay a “tax” for healthcare in the form of premiums. Between myself, my wife, and our respective employers, almost 40k is paid for our healthcare insurance per year, excluding our contributions to Medicare and Medicaid. That’s 1/3 of our taxable income. The money is there is a question of distribution of that money.
 

Gonolz

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Screw government funding of "colleges" in general. If someone wants to study art history and can't afford tuition, use the internet. Don't rack up a bunch of debt and expect others to pay for that.

I would support much more government support for trade schools and targeted professions where many more workers are needed with some type of reduced tuition/reduced payback/debt relief. Healthcare professionals in particular should have cheap options for education.
 

onlyTheObvious

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According to the link I saw, 1/3 of that amount is already funded by government. So lower that amount you quoted. In addition, workers currently pay a “tax” for healthcare in the form of premiums. Between myself, my wife, and our respective employers, almost 40k is paid for our healthcare insurance per year, excluding our contributions to Medicare and Medicaid. That’s 1/3 of our taxable income. The money is there is a question of distribution of that money.
Yet nobody in power from any part lays out the math. The Money of the rich isn’t reachable because they don’t collect paychecks. Millions and millions that make next to nothing will pay nothing. Middle class would be left holding the bag and many in the middle class fear what their employer gives them would vanish.

I would also wager them government isn’t really paying a third, they are just tossing it onto the debt. ACA cost the government billions every month. I don’t recall a tax increase or a cut in spending that pays for it.
 

Hoosierhawkeye

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I agree that public colleges should be funded better which should drive tuition down. I'm not sure that I agree with the numbers that you have extrapolated from 1970.

Other than funding, there are things that have changed about colleges since 1970. Colleges now have IT departments, internet, servers, not just a computer lab in the science or engineering building. Colleges now have to follow more stringent health & safety laws in their laboratories. Colleges used to dump hazardous waste down the sink or throw drums in the woods. There is a cost to doing that stuff the right way. These aren't huge, and certainly don't account for all of the inflation that we've seen over the past 30-50 yrs. I would guess that college athletics is also a driver of some of the costs. A big place like Iowa can have a self-sustaining athletics department, but a smaller school can't.

Anyhow, I graduated with loan debt equivalent to a 3 yr old used car (Toyota Camry if you're wondering). The interest rate was about 9%.

So there is more technology etc that goes into training. . . That's entirely true but it also can't exactly be helped. Engineers for example have to learn to use CAD, you could theoretically train engineers to draft by hand again but they will be entirely useless to any company who wants to hire them.

So we have to fund it to the point that it's affordable. I'm ok if you want to share some of the increase in costs with students, maybe make the tuition $5,000. But what I'm not ok with is making everything that is important to any kind of middle class lifestyle in this country cost 300 to 500 percent more after accounting for inflation than it did 50 years ago. And what's worse is when we do that and then we blame the young people for their relative lack of wealth. Milennials have like 5% of the wealth while boomers had 30 at this age. And what's worse is I heard the statistic that if you discount freaking Mark Zuckerberg from that equation it's more like Millenials have 2.5% of the wealth.
 

Hoosierhawkeye

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I like how people immediately jump into the weeds before actually contemplating the structure as a foundation to help getting people what they want.

For example;
1. People who have already paid for their own college aren’t really excited about taking on the burden of others (that’s human nature). This solves for that.
2. People think college costs are impossible and keeps them from achieving the highest version of themselves both personally and professionally. This solves for that.

Thats really the big 2, awesome, everything else (cost controls, qualifications, etc) can be figured out. The point is, do you want to bet on yourself or do you not. This basically eliminates a lot of excuses from everyone which is the goal plus it provides a realistic and valuable funding mechanism that can pay for itself. This means I don’t need to hear their silly bitching anymore…win baby!

And why don't we just go back to making college cost comparable to what it was in the past when the boomers went to college and got ahead?

Either via loans or your 5 percent tax you are still extracting the wealth from the least wealthy group in this country because for some reason the wealthier groups are bound and determined to pull up every ladder to prosperity that they themselves used up behind them.
 

onlyTheObvious

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And why don't we just go back to making college cost comparable to what it was in the past when the boomers went to college and got ahead?

Either via loans or your 5 percent tax you are still extracting the wealth from the least wealthy group in this country because for some reason the wealthier groups are bound and determined to pull up every ladder to prosperity that they themselves used up behind them.
Going to roll back the number of non teaching and admin positions at colleges also? The dorm quality? Exercise facilities? Eating facilities?

we read it’s mostly for profit garbage schools that are responsible for all the debt. Yet it’s used as an excuse to make everything free.

nobody is hurting if they went to junior college and then in instate school. Stop giving out loans just because somebody wants to go to an expensive school.only give out loans to cover a reasonable portion of junior college and in state school. You want to go somewhere more expensive? That’s on you and your parents and a private lender ( which I would make forgivable via bankruptcy which would likely kill private lenders off)

sometimes the answer needs to be No. just because a school wants an indoor water park with a lazy river and brick oven fired pizzas doesn’t mean everybody in the state should automatically be on the hook for any of it.
 
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Hoosierhawkeye

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Going to roll back the number of non teaching and admin positions at colleges also? The dorm quality? Exercise facilities? Eating facilities?

we read it’s mostly for profit garbage schools that are responsible for all the debt. Yet it’s used as an excuse to make everything free.

nobody is hurting if they went to junior college and then in instate school. Stop giving out loans just because somebody wants to go to an expensive school.only give out loans to cover a reasonable portion of junior college and in state school. You want to go somewhere more expensive? That’s on you and your parents and a private lender ( which I would make forgivable via bankruptcy which would likely kill private lenders off)

sometimes the answer needs to be No. just because a school wants an indoor water park with a lazy river and brick oven fired pizzas doesn’t mean everybody in the state should automatically be on the hook for any of it.

You know you guys keep citing that but I think you are picking out extreme examples and I'm not sure how much that really adds to costs.

I don't know of any state school in my state that has those kinds of amenities. For example I just looked up Purdue in state tuition and it's just shy of $10,000 for in state tuition and it's dorms look like about the same dorms I lived in at Valpo. Just a room with 2 beds and some desks in it.

Please demonstrate for me the expensive luxuries going on at Purdue.

Edit: Apparently these amenities are more symbolic than anything and are not driving up costs much. Many are being funded by student recreation fees which are voted on by the student government and are separate from tuition which is an administration decision.


In fact it said a rock climbing wall costs only about $100,000 to put up which for a state school with tens of thousands of students that's a mere pittance. I mean if you have only 10,000 students than each student is paying a whopping $10 for that rock climbing wall.
 
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UKGrad93

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So there is more technology etc that goes into training. . . That's entirely true but it also can't exactly be helped. Engineers for example have to learn to use CAD, you could theoretically train engineers to draft by hand again but they will be entirely useless to any company who wants to hire them.

So we have to fund it to the point that it's affordable. I'm ok if you want to share some of the increase in costs with students, maybe make the tuition $5,000. But what I'm not ok with is making everything that is important to any kind of middle class lifestyle in this country cost 300 to 500 percent more after accounting for inflation than it did 50 years ago. And what's worse is when we do that and then we blame the young people for their relative lack of wealth. Milennials have like 5% of the wealth while boomers had 30 at this age. And what's worse is I heard the statistic that if you discount freaking Mark Zuckerberg from that equation it's more like Millenials have 2.5% of the wealth.
I completely agree that we need to train students using the technology of today and tomorrow. What I was trying to point out is that some of the increase in cost is due to a more advanced infrastructure that is needed now vs in the past. In other words, we not only have to take into account inflation since 1970 (or whenever), we have to take into account things that exist now that did not in 1970.

I also agree that we need to make college affordable. At least public colleges.

It also seems that the boomers have a lot of wealth locked up. I would guess that the millennials are in for a big payday soon as they gain inheritance from the boomers.
 

onlyTheObvious

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You know you guys keep citing that but I think you are picking out extreme examples and I'm not sure how much that really adds to costs.

I don't know of any state school in my state that has those kinds of amenities. For example I just looked up Purdue in state tuition and it's just shy of $10,000 for in state tuition and it's dorms look like about the same dorms I lived in at Valpo. Just a room with 2 beds and some desks in it.

Please demonstrate for me the expensive luxuries going on at Purdue.

Edit: Apparently these amenities are more symbolic than anything and are not driving up costs much. Many are being funded by student recreation fees which are voted on by the student government and are separate from tuition which is an administration decision.


In fact it said a rock climbing wall costs only about $100,000 to put up which for a state school with tens of thousands of students that's a mere pittance. I mean if you have only 10,000 students than each student is paying a whopping $10 for that rock climbing wall.
And others keep saying most college debt is from for profit institutions but are using it as an excuse to want all college free.

and if you are going to excuse every line item as “not much” when divided out then when does it combine to equal a lot?

are you going to make private colleges free also? If not are you not signing the execution papers on thousands of universities and millions of jobs? Also in “free college” world who sets tuition?
 

Hoosierhawkeye

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It also seems that the boomers have a lot of wealth locked up. I would guess that the millennials are in for a big payday soon as they gain inheritance from the boomers.

That may be true but you can't get back time. Suddenly getting wealth in their 50's or 60's isn't going to make it so they can start families.
 

Hoosierhawkeye

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And others keep saying most college debt is from for profit institutions but are using it as an excuse to want all college free.

and if you are going to excuse every line item as “not much” when divided out then when does it combine to equal a lot?

are you going to make private colleges free also? If not are you not signing the execution papers on thousands of universities and millions of jobs? Also in “free college” world who sets tuition?

AGAIN I'M NOT ADVOCATING MAKING COLLEGE FREE

I'm advocating making public universities cost about the same inflation adjusted as they did 50 years ago. So about $3000 a year. Maybe if you want share some of the cost increases you could say $5,000
 

unIowa

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And why don't we just go back to making college cost comparable to what it was in the past when the boomers went to college and got ahead?

Either via loans or your 5 percent tax you are still extracting the wealth from the least wealthy group in this country because for some reason the wealthier groups are bound and determined to pull up every ladder to prosperity that they themselves used up behind them.

This provides a ladder to those who might not otherwise have it. No loans at all, just an investment in US citizens that want to take advantage of it. It allows for someone to take what is essentially a risk fee investment in themselves. If they end up with ultra high earnings it was a great investment for themselves as it helped propel them to those heights. If they don't do well economically it costs them less as their earnings are lower.
 

unIowa

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AGAIN I'M NOT ADVOCATING MAKING COLLEGE FREE

I'm advocating making public universities cost about the same inflation adjusted as they did 50 years ago. So about $3000 a year. Maybe if you want share some of the cost increases you could say $5,000

Who takes the haircut; professors. facilities, contractors, support staff....who?
 

unIowa

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Increase state support to fund the costs.

So the taxpayers take the haircut. How does that help control costs? It just shifts the burden of the cost to those who are not the direct but rather secondary benefactors.
 

Hoosierhawkeye

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So the taxpayers take the haircut. How does that help control costs? It just shifts the burden of the cost to those who are not the direct but rather secondary benefactors.

They were the direct benefactors when they got cheap college back in the 1970's. Now they don't want to pay for it like their parents and grandparents did.
 

alaskanseminole

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All who want it? No.

College isn't for everyone. Skilled trades are vastly underrated, and are quickly closing the wage gap. Automotive Service Technicians at dealerships are making 6 figures.
Mike Rowe agrees.

mike-rowe-dirty.gif
 

alaskanseminole

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Typical boomer, went to college on the cheap in the 1980's, made a good living and has since gone around shitting on the idea of people wanting a college education.
Why is it "shitting". Schools these days push college like it's appropriate and a likely option for everyone. Some kids just want to take over their dad's plumbing business. Nothing wrong with that.
 

onlyTheObvious

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Any links to a hardship case where the student went to junior college and than a state school they lived in?

the amount of aid that truly needy kids get is considerable.

online juco is easily paid for by working part time. Force parents to put $50 a month in an aggressive 529 from the day they are born and by the time they go to a state school they have a nice chunk of change. Loans should be very manageable on that path.
 
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Hoosierhawkeye

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How did we get ultra expensive college?

State's stopped funding it to the level that it should be funded.

Here are some articles about how state funding has dropped just in a 10 year period from 2009 to 2019. That's to say nothing how fund



This all started back with Reagan who when he took over as governor of California the state schools there where pretty much free.

 

Hoosierhawkeye

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Why is it "shitting". Schools these days push college like it's appropriate and a likely option for everyone. Some kids just want to take over their dad's plumbing business. Nothing wrong with that.

Nothing wrong with that assuming their dad has a plumbing business to take over in the first place.

The funny thing is that the unions used to provide training for skilled trades but I'm guessing Mike Rowe isn't much of a fan of them either.
 

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