RUSH: Here’s Gary, Haverhill, Massachusetts. Or Haverhill. Great to have you with us, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Hey, Rush. You know, these Democrats, they always want to bash a working person, whether it’s a CEO or a small business owner like myself. Why don’t we ever hear the Dems complain about people like “Liawatha” making $350,000 a year to teach one course? Aren’t these students getting hammered, or are we waiting for Bernie to just like, you know, expunge all of their debts altogether?
RUSH: You know, this is an excellent point and I’m glad that you called. I meant to include this in my miniature riff on this tired, worn-out, endless Democrat Party attack on corporations. One of the biggest industrial complexes in this country they totally ignore and leave alone, and that is higher education. In fact, it’s gotten so bad that they have a policy proposal to forgive student loans!
They never complain about how Big Education gouges people. They never want to get even with the CEOs, the presidents of these universities. They never. They leave them totally alone. They never complain about how students and families get gouged with tuition. They don’t complain a thing how tuition costs never come down. What do they do? They totally support it.
I think they’ve destroyed the whole premise of a college education. And they come along and, in order to solve it, they never suggest they’re gonna start taxing big universities, and they’re never gonna start taxing these overpaid professors. No ho. They never talk about limiting the amount of pay a college president can get, oh, no. What do they do? It gets so bad, then they come up with a plan to give away student loans. Just forgive student loan debt. It’s one of the most glaring inconsistencies.
We know why. The major American university system is where much of liberal propaganda occurs. And so there’s not gonna be any cutback there. They’re not gonna trash ’em, they’re not gonna rip ’em, they’re not gonna criticize ’em, they’re not gonna include them in this unending, never-ending assault on greed, big corporations, destroying people.
Now, what I mean by ruining, destroying the college education, the premise of it — and these are the best and brightest among us, folks. These are the people that run these systems. And again, for as long as I’ve been alive, this actually dates back to the Great Depression when — and I realize nobody alive today went through it. So it’s a distant thing in the past that hasn’t happened since. And so who cares, Rush? Well, I understand. But it’s nevertheless filled with teachable moments.
The Great Depression was really, really bad. There were millions of people starving, millions of people could not get work because there wasn’t any. The only people who did even have a chance at getting a job were people who were educated and had proof in their hand that they had been, a diploma, a college education.
And so the parents of that era, working with establishment elites, embarked on the idea that if you were to amount to anything in life, if you wanted to do anything, to even have a chance at it, you had to go to college. You had to get at least a four-year degree. And the parents and grandparents who had lived through the Great Depression, this became one of the primary objectives of child raising, that their kids go to college.
It was a big deal. Because we’re talking early 1900s now, and it was not universal. It was still a very exclusive, small group of people who were able to go to universities or colleges, particularly good ones. And parents, grandparents saved a lot of money, they raised their kids steering them in this direction because it was thought to be the closest thing to a guarantee of success in life that they, as parents, could provide.
And it just grew. It grew and grew and grew. It’s long-lived the Great Depression. And it’s now become, as it once was, it seems to be one of the primary objectives of parents worldwide, particularly in America, to get their kids educated. Now, every parent wants their kid educated, I mean, it stands to reason, but going to college became something and remains so, a focal point, a primary objective of responsible parents raising their kids.
It’s not an assumption that their kids are gonna go. It’s not just a next stage in growing up. It’s something you have to make happen, because it is necessary, it is required for your kid to have any kind of chance. That’s why we’ve got the cheating scandals and have had for a while. Parents of means have tried to game the system to get their kids into these universities when they otherwise might not pass the tests or qualify. So they’ve used whatever influence they can for this precise reason.
There’s also ego in it. “My kid, yes, my son is on the crew team at USC.” At the afternoon tea party you brag about these things. Well, the way it evolved, it became so important, and they created such a market for it, that the demand — i.e., parents and families wanting their kids to go to college — went through the roof. So there was no reason to cut prices, tuition, room and board, books. No reason to cut prices.
And various different classes and qualifications of colleges and universities sprung up. Like there are different kinds of hotels, there are different kinds of seats on airplanes, there are different types of department stores to handle all kinds of family financial circumstances. There’s community college, there’s junior college, there’s the state university system, there’s the Ivy League. It runs the gamut.
Everybody wants their kid to go to the best college they can. Because going to a junior college, that’s embarrassing, when your neighbor’s kids are going off to State U or some of them are going off to Harvard or Yale or what have you. So it got to be almost axiomatic in life that responsible parents, first and foremost, made sure their kids were gonna be able to go to the best damn school they could get ’em into, whether the kids wanted to or not. That didn’t matter, the kids were gonna go.
The demand was all on the parents’ side. So there was no pressure for prices to come down or be cut. And so they didn’t. Prices kept skyrocketing. And throughout all of this, every major U.S. corporation has been criticized. The oil companies, to Big Tobacco, to Big Pharmaceutical, to Big Makeup, you name it, they’ve all been targeted, they’ve been ripped to shreds, they’ve been threatened, they’ve been criticized, they’ve had new taxes imposed on ’em, they’re gouging people, they’re treating people unfairly, they’re killing their customers.
But Big Education has been totally exempt. There hasn’t been a word of criticism. Oh, there might be the occasional complaint about tuition, but what’s the answer? “Hey, let’s set up a loan program!” There’s never any demand that some stupid communist professor be fired or that there be cutbacks in the botany department or wherever.
And then the pressures came for Title IX and women to be able to do all the sports that men do, and if they were denied that, then you had to stop the men’s sports program. That required even more money, so hello boosters, can you donate here and there? And it just became a never-ending cycle where all the money involved in education went to the schools, and it kept getting more and more and more expensive.
So they create this situation where the only chance you’ve got in life is to go to college. This is what they tell you from the Great Depression to the present. The only chance you’ve got is to go to college. It’s still a storyline in major television shows. Kids not wanting to go to school, how it rips the parents apart. It’s still a major storyline. It’s still a big deal. Parents will do anything to get their kids into these schools, paying through the nose. And they’ve created this requirement.
But the point is, it isn’t true. You don’t have to go to college to be happy! You don’t have to go to college to be successful. I’m not saying don’t go, not putting it down, but it isn’t what they say it is. It isn’t the life requirement. It does not mean that you are gonna spend your life in misery if you don’t go to college. But everybody thinks that if they don’t go, they’re not gonna have a prayer, not a chance.
So they create this demand, they feed the demand, they raise the prices, to the point now where to get this precious degree that gives you the only chance you’re ever gonna have in life to amount to something, it’s gonna cost you the first 20 years of work to pay for it after you graduate. And who’s making money on all this?
Well, guess who’s running the student loan program? Barack Hussein Obama took it over from the banks. It’s not even the banks getting rich off of this. They were for a while. Now it’s the government. The government’s getting rich off the student loan program and whoever they choose to finance all this stuff.
So they create this big demand, they create this paranoia in people that if they don’t go to college they’re gonna be abject failures and live in tents with people in Los Angeles, which isn’t true. That you’re not gonna be happy if you don’t go to college, that’s not true. That you’re not gonna be respected by anybody if you don’t go to college, that’s not true. That you’re not gonna be able to buy stuff you want to buy if you don’t go to college. That’s not true.
They have everybody believing this, paying through the nose for it, and now it’s gotten to the point, as I say, where you spend so much money getting this precious degree that whatever you earn, most of it’s gonna go to paying off the debt you incurred. And it’s gotten so ridiculous that now it’s a major political issue to propose forgiving the debt.
My point here, there hasn’t been any pressure put on these universities, colleges to lower their costs. They’ve not been ripped or criticized for ripping people off. They haven’t been criticized for gouging their customer. They totally escape the usual Democrat bromides. There’s never, ever any pressure applied to them, public or whatever, because people, “It doesn’t matter, Rush. I got get my kid to college, whatever it takes, whatever it costs, if I have to get second mortgage, the car, I’ll do it.”
That’s what people do. That’s how they’ve been conditioned. And it’s been fully leveraged and taken advantage of. And in the process, what good is an education that’s gonna take you 10 to 15 years to pay it off after you get it, after you graduate? At some places. Not all. Depends on where you go. But, remember, everybody wants the best that they can get. And we haven’t even talked about the scholarship program. So it’s been a well-played — you talk about a marketing plan that has come off without a hitch, this is it.