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Europe Serves as a Warning on the Idea of ‘Free’ College

Europe Serves as a Warning on the Idea of ‘Free’ College

“Germany, for example, saw a 37% increase in the college subsidy cost to taxpayers once public universities removed tuition.”

It turns out free college is very expensive. Who could have guessed?

The Daily Signal reports:

Europe Has Free College. Here’s How It’s Working Out.

Free college sounds great! Who doesn’t like free stuff?

To make the idea sound even more appealing, advocates continuously cite Europe as an example of success. Many European countries offer their citizens tuition-free higher education, so why can’t America?

The truth is that free college in Europe is no success story. Rather, it should serve as a cautionary tale for the United States.

European-style tuition-free higher education has proved one thing beyond the shadow of a doubt: “Free” college is actually wildly expensive…

The increasingly hefty price tag attached to college tuition reflects the fact that colleges have no incentive to keep their prices low because students can so easily take out massive loans from Washington.

One of the few factors putting any downward pressure on higher education costs is the growing criticism that universities receive for leaving so many students burdened with massive amounts of student loan debt.

Under a fully financed government system, however, universities would receive no such scrutiny. They’d simply pass the bill to Washington and let lawmakers take the heat from unhappy taxpayers.

That cumulative bill would quickly skyrocket. Many European countries that have experimented with “free college” are finding that approach to be simply unaffordable. Germany, for example, saw a 37% increase in the college subsidy cost to taxpayers once public universities removed tuition.


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One of the hardest lessons to teach a liberal: There is no such thing as a free lunch.

    Sunlight78 in reply to irv. | January 20, 2020 at 6:47 pm

    I tried to uprate you and messed up on phone:(.

    Most liberals know there is no such thing as a free lunch. They just plan on it being free for them and their followers who power the Democrats political machine with others (us) paying for their entitled free perks.

I spent two semestyersas a visiting professor at two different German universities. Students not only received free tuition but a cash spend along with special discounts on railroad tickets, meals, etc. Theresult was that large numbers spent years hanging around never finishing their

The Left has become expert in finding more and more ways to buy votes for themselves with other people’s money. “Free” college is just one of many.

I don’t know about all European countries but I believe that Switzerland has a system that requires prospective students to pass qualifying tests and requirements. In other words they discriminate and college is reserved for the best students.
Thoughts on such a system??

    artichoke in reply to CapeBuffalo. | January 26, 2020 at 1:36 am

    If others are paying, it’s certainly justified.

    What’s morally questionable is how we let people get loaned up when experts would know they won’t succeed in college.

I read that at least they have admission standards that select the students likely to be able to do the work. So they’re not wasting the public money on hopeless cases.

Here we have loans that anyone can get even if objectively they’re almost certain to fail, or to have to get one of the special easy degrees invented for those who can’t do the other subjects.