Rand Paul: If You Give Kids Free College Tuition, They’ll Want Free Shoes And Makeup
Rand Paul is not very fond of Bernie Sanders’ plan to provide free tuition to state colleges. Which is not surprising at all really, given that he’s a Republican who happens to be especially fond of the works of Ayn Rand and Murray Rothbard. Not surprising at all.
But, it’s always fun to hear why dudes like Paul are opposed to such things, as they usually respond in such an absurd way.
Paul told Katie McDonough of Fusion that he believed that if the government offered free college for students, that then they would just keep wanting more and more free things, like shoes and makeup.
“I think there’s an appeal when people offer you something for free. They just don’t think to the next step of, ‘Where’s the free coming from?’ So if you have 1,000 college kids and tell them you’re going to give them free tuition, they’re like, ‘That sounds good, I’m for that,’” he told me. “My next question is, what about free cars? What about free clothes? Free makeup, free shoes? Everything should be free. But it can’t be free, somebody has to pay for it.”
Clearly, this theory was poached from one of Paul’s other favorite philosophical works, If You Give A Mouse A Cookie.
The interesting thing here is–we already have socialized, free education in this country from grades K-12. As a veteran of our socialist public education system, I can tell you that it never occurred to me once that I ought to be asking the government to provide me with shoes and makeup in addition to my standard education.
Now, we have this system not so much to do people favors or give them free stuff or what-have-you, but because it is necessary for our country and our economy to educate its people, so that they can grow up and have jobs and contribute to society. It is so important that we legally require it up to a certain age. It’s supposed to be an investment in our future as a country.
But here’s the thing–for the most part, a high school degree is just not getting anyone a job anymore, which essentially diminishes the value of that investment. And if we’ve got a situation where a large portion of the people in our country are essentially barred from getting the education they need in order make enough money to live on, we are going to fall apart. You can’t complain about there being too many poor people “taking handouts” from the government when you make it way too hard to escape from poverty. We can’t go and call ourselves the “land of opportunity” when opportunity is only available to those who can afford it.
Free college tuition would eventually pay for itself–because we’d have more qualified workers being able to demand higher salaries and thus contributing more tax money. We’d have more people qualified to start businesses that create jobs. We would be better off altogether. It’s not a party favor, it’s a necessity.
You may now be wondering if Rand Paul has proposed an alternative. And guess what! He has, but it is stupid.
Paul’s answer to rising tuition costs? Distance learning. With the internet, he explained, “One professor can teach everybody in the whole world.”
Sure, we can all watch lectures on the internet, but uh–who is it that is going to grade those papers? Education is not just about listening to lectures all day. That is not how that works. Rand Paul himself is an ophthalmologist by trade. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think anyone in their right mind would want to go see an ophthalmologist with a degree from UTubeiversity. Sorry, not getting near my eyes with that. That would not be a good investment.
The vast majority of the time, you have to spend money to make money. That is a fact of life. If we want this country to be able to compete in the global marketplace, we have to make sure our citizens are well-prepared and well-educated.