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One Reply to “Technology, Productivity, And Higher Ed”
Carey is either non-educated in economics or he is pulling the wool over our eyes.
Carey does not really address the main reason why costs are rising: subsidization. If you subsidize something you get more of it. Government creates a disconnect between power and responsibility- meaning, among other things, that government is always spending other people’s money and does not risk forfeiture for bad decisions and therefore has no incentive to be frugal (government has severe problems calculating opportunity costs too but I will leave that aside for now). There are no limits on spending. Simultaneously, the demand side of the equation is always outpacing supply, so costs will rise indeed.
But government cannot repeal economic law.
So when Carey offers technology up as the panacea he seems unaware that the government system creates relative impoverishment, a situation known a priori and not comparable in cardinal numbers. People are less well off than they would be with a market in higher education that employs technology than with closed system that employs technology.
On average there are too many schools, too many professors and not very much bang for the buck. College degrees are rapidly becoming devalued. If the market took over then maybe there would be less college grads, but a high school diploma would mean something again. Real progress would take the place.