Tuesday, November 08, 2005


The high cost of free education

Douwe Osinga wrote a beautiful post about why the University eduction should not be free. The statement is very arguable, but Douwe's argument have good reasoning and are worth a discussion.
here's the thing. There is no such thing as a free lunch and there is no free university education either. Note, that there is a vote in the Douwe's post

I mean this in two senses. First of all, it might be free to the student, but somebody is paying, because it costs money. That somebody is Joe Taxpayer of course and all things the same, he'd like to keep his money. Or to put it in a more liberal/left wing formulation, the same money could be spend on other things. Lower education for example. Lower education is for everybody, university education tends to end up with the people that will have lots of money later anyway.

The other sense I mean it in is that the whole thing distorts demand and supply for university graduates. We end up with too many people studying English because they like it and not enough engineers, because people tend not to like it

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