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Don't ban affirmative action: abolish university instead
Banning affirmative action is educational perestroika. We need total privatization and decentralization instead.
The American higher education system is a bubble of communism situated in an otherwise capitalist society. This is not hyperbole or metaphor; 75% of American universities are owned by the government, and 27% of Harvard’s budget comes from the government.
And private universities, like private K-12 schools, are really only mimics of the government institutions that are forced on the public. This is because the educational politburo has essentially commanded that every American worker within certain fields is to have state-certified credentials. While private organizations are allowed to issue these credentials, they must mimic the government versions or their credentialing authority will be revoked.
The communist system, like all communist systems, has severe negative externalities on the economy and on the individuals subjected to it. Only abolishing this system will relieve these externalities, which are caused by communism. The externalities I will discuss are overeducation, miseducation, inefficient education, credentialism, parasitism, student humiliation, and researcher humiliation.
Because of the central planning system, Americans are overeducated. It was the government, deciding to expand the public university system, that caused the sky-rocketing rates of student enrollment. Taxpayers and students who do not need to be in college pay for this, and are the victims of overeducation.
In a free market system, there is no overeducation, because students do not have to sign contracts for 4 year indentured servitude to institutions, to receive government certified sheepskin at the end. Instead, students would purchase education modules that they believe will impart them with valuable skills, making the purchase rewarding in the long term and rational.
The communist system, however, wanting to increase enrollment to the current numbers by fiat, has forced overeducation on American society by propping up these institutions with tax dollars, offering cheap student loans to students to attend, and demanding the resulting worthless sheepskin for much employment. Not only do many civil servant jobs demand sheepskin; managerial corporations, which are run by politburo members and therefore who are only “private” and “independent” insofar as they do not live off of tax dollars, also demand sheepskin by fiat. Finally, a number of careers demand numerous pieces of sheepskin by force, including engineering, education, medicine, and law. Even though all of these fields have licensing exams, participants are not allowed to self-study and receive independent experience before taking these exams. Instead, they must receive government sheepskin first. Engineers and teachers need two pieces, a high school degree and a bachelors, while lawyers and physicians need no less than three. This could obviously not survive in a free market system, and is propped up by student loan subsidies and government funding for what are, in 80% of cases, government owned institutions.
I have proven in my book that teachers need 0 years of education after 8th grade, while engineers, lawyers, and physicians need about 4 plus practical training. Instead, teachers and engineers receive 8, while lawyers and physicians receive 11 and 10 respectively (we count the last two years of medical school as practical experience). Most people are overeducated by about half a decade, and this costs hundreds of billions of dollars per year.
Many who go to university, because they have to, are educated very poorly. Some are even anti-educated. Generally, communist “services” are of very low quality compared to free market services. Thus, another externality of the communist education system is poor service, or miseducation.
If you want to go to school to be a psychologist, you are essentially taught lies for 4 years, because of the replication crisis. In other words, you memorize studies and ideas with no scientific backing or faulty scientific backing, which are not actually true. For example, a study of psychology text books found “that 79.3% of textbooks contained inaccurate statements and 79.3% had logical fallacies in their sections about intelligence. The five most commonly taught topics were IQ (93.1% of books), Gardner’s multiple intelligences (93.1%), Spearman’s g (93.1%), Sternberg’s triarchic theory (89.7%), and how intelligence is measured (82.8%). Conversely, modern models of intelligence were only discussed in 24.1% of books, with only one book discussing the Carroll three-stratum model by name and no book discussing bifactor models of intelligence. We conclude that most introductory psychology students are exposed to some inaccurate information and may have the mistaken impression that nonmainstream theories (e.g., Sternberg’s or Gardner’s theories) are as empirically supported as g theory.”
How could this happen in a free market where payments are voluntary? In a free market, knowledge has to work to be taken seriously. Free markets are empirical. Communism is Hegelian, because you can be funded for bullshit, like Lysenko. You can also be purged by the Party if you don’t go along with this bullshit, like thousands of anti-Lysenkoists in both the USSR and the USA.
Under Communism, non-scientific garbage can flourish because the money comes from violence. As long as the IRS stays in business and the communist system prevails, psychology departments can depart from reality in whatever ways they want. They don’t need customers because their tax gibs will keep rolling in, because the politburo wants there to exist easy degrees for the sub 110 IQ and they don’t care about anything else, nor do they have the capacity to really judge whether psychology is accurate. The free market does have that capacity.
First, Harvard University. Their most recent computer science degree requirements are as follows: Calculus, Probability, Linear algebra, programming 1, programming 2, formal reasoning, discrete mathematics, computational limitations, algorithms, intermediate algorithms, systems, artificial intelligence, and advanced computer science. The rest are the same.
I can’t find a C and driver writing job. I can find plenty of React.js, Express.js, REST API, Ruby on Rails etc. jobs. Guess who taught himself these technologies? I was miseducated and so are basically all life-long software engineers who took a computer science degree. There are essentially no “software engineering” degrees that focus on these technologies that they could have done instead. They have to learn C, operating systems, autistic data structures and other academic BS that is completely insulated from the market by violence (tax funding).
Getting a degree is an extremely inefficient way to learn a subject. Because requirements are top-down and communist, a student will typically have to take a set number of impoverished, outdated electives as well as core classes that may not be relevant to the most cutting edge research being done in the field. While overeducation mainly applies to people who get fake degrees, miseducation applies to the middle who want to learn real skills and then go work in the private sector, inefficient education applies most heavily to future researchers who should be learning esoteric academic theory. The academy fails to do this efficiently, just like the DMV and Soviet bread lines. See the pattern?
Not only is the curriculum often outdated, the classes themselves are often inefficient. There are too many tests: a free market system could teach a subject and then give one final which measures ultimate understanding. College courses are bogged down in 3 months of bureaucracy due to politburo mandates: you have to attend in person or you get a bad grade, do your homework exactly as described by some bureaucrat or you get a bad grade, take your weekly quiz or you get a bad grade, etc.
Additionally, lectures are often sub-par and lecturers would starve trying to be teachers in a free market. In a free market, the best lecturers would become millionaires selling their courses online to millions of students, who would then be certified by a secure credentialing test after the course. Under communism, mediocre bureaucrats insulated from the real world by tax payments will dock your grade if you don’t physically attend their bad lectures. Nonetheless, students often supplement their courses with good online material, when their professor is particularly bad. Everyone who has been to university knows this, and it doesn’t have to be this way. It is only like this because of the communism of the education system.
This system generally promotes an unnatural credentialism. The politburo seems to actively want this, which is why alternatives like IQ testing are discouraged. The Party wants an unnatural monopoly on measuring g in potential hires. It is embarrassing that this can be done in less than an hour better than they do in almost a decade of schooling.
The next time you look at job listings as see something like “this spread sheet job requires an MBA and 5 years of experience”, remember that this is only possible because of all the subsidies pumped into the sheepskin industry. In a free market, credentials get a lot more rare, so employers can’t be shameless credentialists, they would never hire anyone. However, under the conditions of overeducation I described, it becomes rational for even small time employers to expect a college degree.
So far I have only commented on requirements for a major. However, all university students are also forced to take numerous fake and retarded classes outside of their major, subsidizing complete parasites, such as academic philosophers and English professors.
It was not enough for me to receive a poorly done, inefficient computer science degree. I also had to take two ethics classes, an English class, a religion class, a literature class, and more. These classes would simply not exist in a free market except for whomever is actually willing to spend money to read Peter Singer, which is probably very few people, especially considering you can just download his book off of libgen and read it, because it is very dumb and not very complicated, without having some other professor as an intermediate. Who needs a professor to read literature? Just go to the book store or the library.
In a free market, the customer is respected, but under communism he is a subordinate who has to be there. Very generally, students do not have full exit rights, and therefore can be and often are subject to disrespectful behavior which gratifies the ego of the bureaucrat who is on the other end.
Bad professors often engage in behaviors that would never survive in a free market. For example, in person attendance grades are something that nobody except for masochists would ever sign up for in a free market. Just put recordings of your lectures online! Let local students attend live if they wish (in reality a free market system would converge to purely online pre-recording, top quality videos very quickly).
Another behavior I frequently experienced was blatant dereliction of duty regarding the grading of homework assignments and tests. Several of my professors, many of whom were not researchers but who were actually hired merely to teach, did this and there were never any consequences from the politburo. They were completely insulated from the natural consequences of straight up not doing a core part of their job.
Also, they would often cancel lectures by fiat. Imagine paying for a course in a free market but then you don’t receive all of the information you payed for because the instructor went on vacation.
And their humongous, delusional egos are the worst part. Every student knows to not complain about these things to these apparatchiks — they will be completely rude, like a socialist bread line clerk, asserting that it is their “right” to behave in these ways and telling the student ridiculous things like “if you don’t like it just drop out.” Compare this to how a McDonald’s employee acts when they forget to put pickles on your burger. They say sorry and make you new one or else they get fired or yelled at by their manager!
Often, the worst professors are poor researchers or do no research. This could probably be proven with a paper measuring and correlating both of these factors. Ironically, the best professors are just as humiliated by a system that will take a brilliant scientist and make him teach undergraduate students, many of whom should not be there, particularly if the researcher works at a public university. Teaching is simply a waste of time for these people. They have to teach because the politburo says so and the government has a near-monopoly on research funds. When the best researcher are government funded and publish their results in journals, why use private funds to compete with them?
Don’t celebrate half-measures. Abolish educational communism
Affirmative action in education only means anything under a communist system. Under a free market system, blacks can buy whatever courses they can afford, and they can take the same credentializing tests as everyone else. If they pass at a lower rate, it’s their problem. A special watered down “for blacks” test wouldn’t do very well on the free market.
This is because affirmative action is actually wealth redistribution to blacks which means it white people are being taxed and that money goes to the blacks in the form of forced-scarcity sheepskin that only even has value by fiat.
Just abolish the sheepskin and educational affirmative action disappears, as well as overeducation, miseducation, inefficient education, parasitism, credentialism, student humiliation, and researcher humiliation.
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