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Level 150 Comments: Faptastic
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If it pays for itself, why advocate for tax payers to pick it up? That doesn't really make any sense.
The math is pretty easy on these things. You look at the median cost required to obtain a degree and the median salary for someone who has that degree verse not having it/having another degree.
The way taxes work, the more money you make the more you repay in taxes. Having income tax pay for college means that people who make the best choices, will pay the most for other people's educations. Having individuals pay for college means that people who make the worst educational/career choices will pay the most.
Right now, if you personally pick a major that leads to a high paying job....something like Computer Science or Accounting....you'll end up with a 60k starting salary or something and make 100k in a few years (in a big city, a lot more on the west coast). You'll trivially repay the 40k you borrowed and you'll have incentive to minimize your costs, because you will repay it.
If tax payers pay for tuition, the people who choose the worst majors will benefit the most. Study Art History and go work at Starbucks....you'll pay very little in taxes and you'll get your education for free. And while you are studying, you'll have NO incentive to minimize costs, because you won't pay for it.
Unsurprisingly, the people I know who are most vocal in supporting 'free' college are the ones who either went to college and failed/dropped out and don't want to repay their loans, or people who studied something 'they enjoyed' but that didn't provide any marketable skills. A good friend of mine owed 80k in student loans and she was an art major who literally worked at Starbucks (which isn't a terrible job). She's always talking about how unfair student loans are.
Meanwhile, talk to people who selected majors that were in demand and would lead to high paying jobs and they're happy to repay their loans. Because they know they'll pay a lot less in the long run repaying their own debt, than repaying the debt of everyone else, forever, in the form of taxes.
It's never going to be free. Why not have the people who benefit the most from their education, pay for it? Why should a waitress who never went to college pay more in taxes so someone who did go to college can repay the same?
I think a majority of people would be fine with semi-free college.
Stem Majors and high contributing to society majors should be free, while art and useless majors have to pay out of pocket.
I'd be glad to work for a film degree if I could get the Math degree for free.
Of course, we'd just have to admit certain majors are useless. Though I'm sure school's will get rid of them the moment they realize they're no longer profitable.
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