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Camile Paglia on unchecked bureaucracy and the atrocity of crippling student debt – Publications – AEI

Summary:
AEI Camile Paglia on unchecked bureaucracy and the atrocity of crippling student debt From Camile Paglia’s interview with Spectator USA: I have been trying for decades to get my fellow Democrats to realize how unchecked bureaucracy, in government or academe, is inherently authoritarian and illiberal. A persistent characteristic of civilizations in decline throughout history has been their self-strangling by slow, swollen, and stupid bureaucracies. The current atrocity of crippling student debt in the US (see chart above) is a direct product of an unholy alliance between college administrations and federal bureaucrats — a scandal that ballooned over two decades with barely a word of protest from our putative academic leftists, lost in their post-structuralist fantasies. Political

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Camile Paglia on unchecked bureaucracy and the atrocity of crippling student debt

Camile Paglia on unchecked bureaucracy and the atrocity of crippling student debt - Publications – AEI

From Camile Paglia’s interview with Spectator USA:

I have been trying for decades to get my fellow Democrats to realize how unchecked bureaucracy, in government or academe, is inherently authoritarian and illiberal. A persistent characteristic of civilizations in decline throughout history has been their self-strangling by slow, swollen, and stupid bureaucracies. The current atrocity of crippling student debt in the US (see chart above) is a direct product of an unholy alliance between college administrations and federal bureaucrats — a scandal that ballooned over two decades with barely a word of protest from our putative academic leftists, lost in their post-structuralist fantasies. Political correctness was not created by administrators, but it is ever-expanding campus bureaucracies that have constructed and currently enforce the oppressively rule-ridden regime of college life.

MP: The chart above shows graphically the explosion in the growth of “atrocity of crippling student loan debt,” which has increased in percentage terms by 225% between 2006 and 2018, three times more than overall consumer debt increased over that period (63.5%), and 1.4 times more than the increased in total federal government debt (157%). In dollar terms, the current volume of outstanding student loan debt is more than $1.56 trillion, which is burdening the average borrower (44.4 million total) with more than $35,000 in student loan debt. In 2015, nearly seven in 10 college seniors (68%) who graduated from public and non-profit colleges had student loan debt. See lots more student loan debt statistics here.

The chart below shows graphically the growth in administrative overhead (bloat) at US colleges and universities between 1976 and 2011 (the last year of historical data before the Department of Education changed how it classifies non-teaching administrative positions). Do you see the pattern? As college enrollment nearly doubled (+91%) between 1976 and 2011, the number of full-time administrators expanded by +139%, while the number of full-time faculty increased by only about half that amount (+76%). To accommodate the increased number of students attending college, universities saved on payroll costs by hiring more lower-cost part-time faculty instead of more expensive full-time faculty, but even that labor substitution wasn’t enough to offset the cost of the ever-expanding “administrative bloat” in higher education, which contributed significantly to the nearly tripling (+190%) of college tuition in inflation-adjusted dollars during that period.

Camile Paglia on unchecked bureaucracy and the atrocity of crippling student debt - Publications – AEI

 

Camile Paglia on unchecked bureaucracy and the atrocity of crippling student debt
Mark Perry

Mark Perry
Mark J. Perry is concurrently a scholar at AEI and a professor of economics and finance at the University of Michigan’s Flint campus. He is best known as the creator and editor of the popular economics blog Carpe Diem. At AEI, Perry writes about economic and financial issues for American.com and the AEIdeas blog.

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