Richard La Motte | Free College Education Sounds Great Until You Think About Reality
By Signal Contributor
Thursday, August 16th, 2018

Josh Heath (“Democratic Voices,” Aug. 14) makes an argument for free college — but is it a good idea?

He cites $70 billion as a cost, but surely as government money is guaranteed to schools, their prices will rise as they add classes, space, staff and programs.

He mentions taxing “millionaires and billionaires,” but many here in Santa Clarita could be considered “millionaires” just based on their home equity. Do they feel really rich?

The difference between a million and a billion is a thousand times. It’s like comparing a dollar to a thousand dollars.

Mr. Heath suggests that free higher education would provide the future work force we need, but today there is also a shortage in trucking and construction jobs, and how many service jobs would go unfilled if everyone could attend college for free?

And what’s to say that students would use the free education to prepare for a future? We humans generally don’t appreciate what we get for free because without “sweat equity,” free things have little personal “value.”

Wouldn’t some people just go to college for the fun of it and waste years at taxpayer expense taking “cool” social classes with no real future job prospects?

Wouldn’t students eventually campaign for “cost of living” benefits while they lounge through school, driving up costs? What about students who waste years to find no jobs waiting for their empty education. Won’t they demand government-guaranteed and protected jobs, funded by more tax dollars? 

Ask yourself, does free government K-12 education turn out great thinkers with regularity? Free college education, like so many Utopian dreams, sounds great if you forget human nature and economics.

Richard La Motte

Valencia

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Signal Contributor

Signal Contributor

Richard La Motte | Free College Education Sounds Great Until You Think About Reality

Josh Heath (“Democratic Voices,” Aug. 14) makes an argument for free college — but is it a good idea?

He cites $70 billion as a cost, but surely as government money is guaranteed to schools, their prices will rise as they add classes, space, staff and programs.

He mentions taxing “millionaires and billionaires,” but many here in Santa Clarita could be considered “millionaires” just based on their home equity. Do they feel really rich?

The difference between a million and a billion is a thousand times. It’s like comparing a dollar to a thousand dollars.

Mr. Heath suggests that free higher education would provide the future work force we need, but today there is also a shortage in trucking and construction jobs, and how many service jobs would go unfilled if everyone could attend college for free?

And what’s to say that students would use the free education to prepare for a future? We humans generally don’t appreciate what we get for free because without “sweat equity,” free things have little personal “value.”

Wouldn’t some people just go to college for the fun of it and waste years at taxpayer expense taking “cool” social classes with no real future job prospects?

Wouldn’t students eventually campaign for “cost of living” benefits while they lounge through school, driving up costs? What about students who waste years to find no jobs waiting for their empty education. Won’t they demand government-guaranteed and protected jobs, funded by more tax dollars? 

Ask yourself, does free government K-12 education turn out great thinkers with regularity? Free college education, like so many Utopian dreams, sounds great if you forget human nature and economics.

Richard La Motte

Valencia