Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Dishonesty in the University Funding Debate

So the debate over higher education funding rumbles on. Plenty of people are very unhappy about the idea that universities might charge higher fees to actually cover the cost of the tuition. Instead, these people argue, the government should increase its funding of universities leaving fees unchanged.

The whole debate is founded on something that those complaining will not tell you.

Consider. We live in a democracy meaning that, in theory, the government should only do what the majority want done. So those people arguing that the government should pay more to universities think that the majority of the country want to contribute towards the degrees of other people.

Now, supposing tuition fees go up. What stops those opposed to such an increase setting up a charity to collect the voluntary contributions from the majority of the country and paying the fees for the students? That's right, absolutely nothing.

I can only assume that they know what we all know which is that if the citizens of the country had a choice, not enough would willingly want to contribute enough money to subsidise the tuition fees. So they argue that the government should force those same citizens to hand over the cash. Nice people aren't they.


  1. I dont think the big issue is tuition fees going up per say. Its more that attending the best universities will no longer be covered by the loan system, meaning they will become the preserve of the social elite. A few thousand more on tuition fees wont make much of a difference so long as its lent to students and subsequently paid back

  2. So you want the government to lend out as much as the university is charging. Why not set up a charity to do just that?