Our educational industrial complex is broken, time to reform higher education and student loans

Our educational industrial complex is broken, and swift reform is needed. College costs continue to rise much faster than inflation, and too many students are plowing themselves into debt and wasting years of their lives pursuing pointless degrees. Upon leaving college, these students are often surprised to discover that their degrees have little value. Of course, most colleges are liberal indoctrination centers, where conservative voices are few and often drowned out.

It is time for the federal government – and state and local governments – to stop picking winners and losers. Just as it is unfair for the federal government to recognize the American Bar Association as the sole accreditor of law schools and allow it to erect unnecessary hurdles to keep people from pursuing law degrees; just as it is indefensible for governments to subsidize unreliable solar and wind projects that drive up electricity bills; just as it is illegitimate for state governments to license hair braiders and interior designers to lock competitors out of the field; just as it is improper for the federal government to grant immunity to credit reporting agencies in spite of their negligence and incompetence; just as it is wrong for governments to deny poor people due process and allow predatory towing companies to sell their cars when they cannot afford exorbitant towing fees; and just as it is improper for states to subsidize moviemaking; so it is wrong for the federal government to shovel money to colleges via student loans.

To begin to address these problems, the federal government should do four things: privatize student loans once again, sell off its portfolio of student debt, allow students to discharge college debt in bankruptcy, tie lending rules to the value of a degree and require colleges to repay half of the remaining value of discharged loans.

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