What's the deal with universities‽‽‽‽‽‽‽‽‽‽‽‽



  • Ok, so this article says 50% of educators at universities are non-tenured adjuncts, who make so little that a significantly percentage of them are on food stamps.

    Yet we're talking about an industry where:

    1. Tuitions have been raising.
    2. College loans are highly subsidized by the Federal Government.
    3. The Federal Government also runs tons of programs to encourage college enrollment, and may in the near future make some level of post-secondary education fully subsidized.

    So... where's the money going, exactly?



  • Buildings, land, private student loans, and upper university management I would assume.


  • Fake News

    Shiny new buildings, stadiums, and dorms with private bedrooms and bathrooms; lots of administration-level people; student loans (generally) can't be discharged in bankruptcy; subsidies and low interest rates make it very easy to rake in more cash per student.

    Partial :hanzo: by @JazzyJosh.



  • That's a lame conspiracy theory. No reptilian aliens? No gigantic underground tunnels between Washington, D.C. and the Tower of London? Nothing at all about faked moon photos?

    Pfft.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @blakeyrat said:

    So... where's the money going, exactly?

    How do you think Discourse is funded?

    Filed Under: *ducks*





  • Aren't these guys supposed to be liberal, and like corporations and executives are evil man.

    Once again,

    "We write this moral code for the plebs, not for ourselves."

    It will probably be followed up by,

    "I see disenfranchised, let me take more money from the working class and give it to the disenfranchised, under the guise of taking it from the rich. I mean, I'm rich, why would I want to take money from myself."

    Similar to the whole

    "I'm a green guy, I support windmills that don't block my ocean view. Put them on that guy's farm over there."

    Quick make a "safe-room" for the Ivy Execs so they can all tell each other how hard it is to get past the glass ceiling in the corporate world.

    I mean, that's what the gender study majors do.



  • Corporate pay is a fairly big WTF, but I don't see why similarly sized enterprises with similar hierarchical structures shouldn't have a similar pay-scale.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @xaade said:

    Aren't these guys supposed to be liberal, and like corporations and executives are evil man.

    Haven't you heard of Limousine Liberals?



  • @xaade said:

    Aren't these guys supposed to be liberal, and like corporations and executives are evil man.

    The evil corperations are doing it for the dirty profit, while the wise professors do it for the enlightenment of the masses.


  • sockdevs

    @Magus said:

    The evil corperations are doing it for the dirty profit, while the wise professors do it for the enlightenment of the masses and profit.

    Money talks ;)



  • But do not the great and wise professors who bring enlightenment to all deserve everything?



  • @Captain said:

    Corporate pay is a fairly big WTF

    That all depends on how much you value being able to separate work and home life.

    That's the one thing that pops up in my mind every time I hear people complain about what execs get paid.

    1. Very few people are on call 24/7, even on vacations.
    2. Very few companies have CEOs that don't behave that way.
    3. And whereas work "effort" level is different, responsibility is not. I don't imagine getting thrown in prison any time soon over a business deal.

    It doesn't matter to me how many knobs you turn in a day, the above prerequisites are out of everyone's will to live like that.

    It's pretty convenient to sit on a couch outside of a CEO's life and tell them they're paid too much.

    /4. And my biggest point. If you took the money held by all these CEOs and divided it, it turns into pennies for each of us. And even if you say, take their wealth away too, then you've crippled the engines of the economy and wealth generation stops there. No one's life is improved by taking something away from someone else, ever.

    @Magus said:

    enlightenment of the masses.

    You mean dumbification. These kids are falling for it in droves. If they truly believe as they do, they should be turning on their own professors, and sniveling rich ne'er pay taxes false idols they've bowed down to.



  • That's the one thing that pops up in my mind every time I hear people complain about what execs get paid.

    Um, cool.

    Meanwhile, the econometrics show us that increasing pay is inefficient.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Magus said:

    The evil corperations are doing it for the dirty profit, while the wise professors do it for the enlightenment of the masses.

    That most universities are non-profit doesn't mean there's not money being made, it just means they don't have to pay dividends to shareholders.



  • @xaade said:

    No one's life is improved by taking something away from someone else, ever.

    Your rhetoric really went off the rails here. It's like when a senator says "the government can't create jobs".



  • @Captain said:

    Meanwhile, the econometrics show us that increasing pay is inefficient.

    Your mom is inefficient. I mean...um...

    Ah, the politics of envy.



  • @Bort said:

    Your rhetoric really went off the rails here. It's like when a senator says "the government can't create jobs".

    More like, "Violence never solves anything."



  • @Captain said:

    increasing pay is inefficient.

    Yes, there is an unreasonable inflation in CEO pay.

    But I'm addressing the myth out there that somehow we can all get by if a CEO is paid marginally higher than the average.

    When they say a CEO has increased from 2 million, to 8 million without any evidence of increase in value, that should be addressed.

    However, the message we get from our glorious government, is that earning anything over a couple of hundred grand is unpatriotic, and should be taxed into non-profitability.

    There's stupid on both ends.



  • @Bort said:

    Your rhetoric really went off the rails here.

    The act of simply moving wealth from an earner to a non-earner, never bears fruit.

    There may be that outlier or so that turns their life around, but time and time again, handouts only push people into more dependency.

    I think back to that $2k during hurricane Rita handout, that disappeared in mere days. And still left people in the same places they were before.

    Granted 2k is not much, but when the people come back tomorrow saying they don't have food, even though they have a trailer for free, and relocation for free. But now have an extra iPad...



  • Um, the highest marginal tax rate is 39.6%. A utility function is plain fucked up if that pushes one into "unprofitability". Especially considering the inordinate benefits to taxation the richest Americans receive.



  • @Captain said:

    highest marginal tax rate is 39.6%

    I'm talking about the rhetoric, not the actual tax rates.

    The message that the poor are receiving from the left is that CEOs are evil, don't deserve any more money than you, and we want to take everything they earn above a few hundred k away and give it to you.

    Whether that is what the left is actually saying, doesn't seem to matter to the poor that vote for them in droves.

    The amount of people that thought they were getting 0 cost premium healthcare with no deductible following obamacare was enough to make a day long youtube comedy video.



  • @Captain said:

    Um, the highest marginal tax rate is 39.6%.

    Of course, this depends on the state and the city where one lives and works.

    @Captain said:

    Especially considering the inordinate benefits to taxation the richest Americans receive.

    "Inordinate"?



  • Here's the deal with universities:



  • The existence of those profitable corporations directly depends on the availability of publicly constructed infrastructure to sustain competitive prices. Consider how much more risk a company would have to take, if it had to finance its own roads, sewers, water, etc. before making even a single sale. Estimates show that, world wide, the cost of internalizing infrastructure investment would be 20% of the cost of a new capital project.



  • None of that explains how that "inordinately" benefit the richest Americans. Like the little people don't get any benefits from all those roads and sewers and profitable companies?



  • They certainly don't earn enough to bitch about the top tax rate.



  • @Captain said:

    The existence of those profitable corporations directly depends on the availability of publicly constructed infrastructure to sustain competitive prices. Consider how much more risk a company would have to take, if it had to finance its own roads, sewers, water, etc. before making even a single sale. Estimates show that, world wide, the cost of internalizing infrastructure investment would be 20% of the cost of a new capital project.

    ... that's ordinary benefits.

    You said "inordinate".



  • @boomzilla said:

    everyone should be able to attend

    ...maybe that's why...

    @boomzilla said:

    colleges are hotbeds of racism and rape



  • @Captain said:

    They certainly don't earn enough to bitch about the top tax rate.

    Like I said...the politics of envy. You're certainly entitled to your opinion on this, but please don't fool yourself that it's more than your feelings.



  • Sorry, you're projecting your feelings onto me.

    The businesses that make people rich would not exist without the infrastructure. Compare this to places like Nigeria, where people do internalize their infrastructure costs and, because of that, have no export markets for manufactures.



  • @Captain said:

    Consider how much more risk a company would have to take, if it had to finance its own roads, sewers, water, etc. before making even a single sale. Estimates show that, world wide, the cost of internalizing infrastructure investment would be 20% of the cost of a new capital project.

    I work for a company that has internalized major infrastructure components. There's a reason why most CEOs would likely be aghast at our capital budgets...they're huge



  • @Captain said:

    Sorry, you're projecting your feelings onto me.

    No?

    @Captain said:

    The businesses that make people rich would not exist without the infrastructure.

    This is true.

    @Captain said:

    Compare this to places like Nigeria, where people do internalize their infrastructure costs and, because of that, have no export markets for manufactures.

    Huh? I'll bet the rich guys in Nigeria are doing just fine for themselves. It's the not-richest people who could take advantage of stuff like better jobs and have much nicer lives.

    I guess I was wrong. It's not your feelings but your incorrect conclusions. The American tax system is a lot more progressive than most other developed countries. We rely on progressive income taxes a lot more than sales tax / VAT (both of which are regressive).

    So these richest guys are paying a lot in taxes and they get benefits, but you want to pretend that no one else is benefiting from all those roads, etc. If this is your argument, then you're ignoring all the other benefits people get, and I think rationalizing your feelings regarding envy is still the most likely explanation here. The math sure doesn't work out.



  • @tarunik said:

    I work for a company that has internalized major infrastructure components. There's a reason why most CEOs would likely be aghast at our capital budgets...they're huge

    It makes more sense for that industry than it does for things like roads and sewers. You simply can't have a free for all on the rails like you can on an Interstate Highway.



  • So these richest guys are paying a lot in taxes and they get benefits, but you want to pretend that no one else is benefiting from all those roads, etc.

    I said the rich get inordinate benefits. And they do. They get paid some 5 times as much as others. And they would not be without the infrastructure. "Everybody" would be poor.

    I don't see the envy. Just a knee-jerk reaction to a challenge to your preferred ideology.



  • @Captain said:

    I said the rich get inordinate benefits. And they do.

    And yet you can't say how they do.

    @Captain said:

    They get paid some 5 times as much as others.

    Yes, but it's not simply due to the infrastructure.

    @Captain said:

    I don't see the envy. Just a knee-jerk reaction to a challenge to your preferred ideology.

    You see their big pay checks and think it's unfair (inordinate was your word). This is envy.



  • @Captain said:

    The businesses that make people rich would not exist without the infrastructure

    You mean the infrastructure that pipeline companies build for themselves, like pipes and an ENTIRE INTRANETWORK for their remote communication.

    Seriously, they put in their own T1 connections out to remote sites, in parallel but segregated from the internet, for security reasons.

    They don't get to tap into roads or powerlines.

    And when that doesn't work, they have to use radio and satellite communication. And have to install their own radio towers at remote locations.

    All this to prevent some citizens private retreat on the mountainside from blowing up.

    So yeah, companies make private investments that other people benefit from, just like the government.

    I'm so sick and tired of the government being considered the only noble entity. To me, they're the biggest corporate monopoly there is.



  • @Captain said:

    "Everybody" would be poor.

    I find that hard to believe.

    We had very rich plantation owners long before we had the interstate.

    :facepalm: and no, not all of them had slaves. Lots of them used indentured, and they also had paid farmhands. So please don't use that argument.

    We also had traderoutes that utilized the sea... unless you believe that was another glorious gift from our holy government. The Mississippi river probably contributed more to the modern success in Texas/Louisiana than I-10 did.



  • @boomzilla said:

    I'll bet the rich guys in Nigeria are doing just fine for themselves

    Well they certainly have a lot of old grandma money.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @blakeyrat said:

    So... where's the money going, exactly?

    A lot of it is salary for non-teachers, i.e., administrators.

    I saw something this morning or last night about some big school, probably in California, but I don't remember which one, and the article said it had about 12,000 faculty, but a slightly higher number of non-faculty. Twelve thousand people many of whom make six-figure salaries, is a hell of a lot of money.



  • And yet you can't say how they do.

    I have said so repeatedly.

    You see their big pay checks and think it's unfair (inordinate was your word). This is envy.

    No, it isn't. We (the business owning class) get benefits others don't. That's what makes the benefits inordinate.

    Let me put it this way. I am a business owner. (This is actually true). I am my own boss, and I don't have to work for anybody. I am vastly wealthy by world standards. But if I lived in Nigeria, this would not be possible, ceteris paribus. The question isn't whether I work hard enough. I could not work hard enough to overcome the limitations imposed by poor infrastructure (in effect, I would have to make three times as many sales as I do now just to pay for infrastructure.) Instead, I get to externalize infrastructure and internalize returns.

    Let me say it again: My business would not be viable if I had to internalize infrastructure costs. Instead, it is viable, and I get to be my own boss, work as much or little as I want, pick and choose the projects I want to do instead of eating shit all day like you do when your boss gets in a tizzy. This is on top of the 'ordinary' benefits to infrastructure everybody gets.

    You can call it "envy" that I recognize that I get inordinate returns to my tax dollars. But it's nonsense. I get returns you don't, in virtue of the fact that the infrastructure we all paid for let me use roads, sewers, etc, (just like you) and then also increases my production frontier.



  • @Captain said:

    I have said so repeatedly.

    I'm saying that you haven't.

    @Captain said:

    No, it isn't. We (the business owning class) get benefits others don't. That's what makes the benefits inordinate

    There's a leap in your logic that isn't justified. People who live down the street from me get food paid by the government. I don't get those. UNFAIR.

    @Captain said:

    Instead, I get to externalize infrastructure and internalize returns.

    So what?

    @Captain said:

    Let me say it again: My business would not be viable if I had to internalize infrastructure costs.

    Let me say it again. I AGREE.

    @Captain said:

    You can call it "envy" that I recognize that I get inordinate returns to my tax dollars.

    Your whole thing is that this stuff is "unfair." You haven't justified it at all as being unfair.

    @Captain said:

    t it's nonsense. I get returns you don't, in virtue of the fact that the infrastructure we all paid for let me use roads, sewers, etc, (just like you) and then also increases my production frontier.

    Bullshit. I get that stuff too, perhaps in different ways. And people who make more money end up paying more money. Next you'll possibly whine about how capital gains rates are lower than income rates, and it'll all be more emotional twaddle and "You didn't build that" bumper stickerism.

    The guys who own the businesses and who are getting super rich off them pay a lot more taxes than me. It's not unfair if they leverage that into greater benefits. None of that is inordinate. I might agree that some of the largess they manage to get the government to shower on them is inordinate. But that's what happens when you create a government capable of being stupid like that.

    Reaping the benefits of public goods is what we're all supposed to do with those public goods. Them doing so doesn't take away from other people's utility. That's more or less the definition of public goods. Your position only makes sense if you don't understand the nature of public goods or if you're making an emotional appeal.


  • mod

    @Captain said:

    We (the business owning class) get benefits others don't.

    You've been very vague on this, and so far I'm with @boomzilla on this. Your position seems very much based on emotion. Got any examples of your "inordinate" benefits?



  • "We (the business owning class) get benefits others don't. That's what makes the benefits inordinate."

    You don't get benefits others don't. You've leveraged a benefit that's available to everyone into greater returns for yourself. Tax breaks are an inordinate benefit. Use of common infrastructure isn't.



  • @xaade said:

    You mean the infrastructure that pipeline companies build for themselves, like pipes and an ENTIRE INTRANETWORK for their remote communication.

    Seriously, they put in their own T1 connections out to remote sites, in parallel but segregated from the internet, for security reasons.

    Same thing with the RR -- we put in our own microwave and fiber optic backbone (as well as radio towers and such) system out here because that's the only way to get telecom backhaul out to some of our remote sites for codeline, detectors, PTC, radio comms, etal...

    Never mind having to lay down our own service roads trackside, or even having sites that require you to Hy-Rail/work-train everything in because that's the only way to access them.



  • @xaade said:

    The act of simply moving wealth from an earner to a non-earner, never bears fruit.

    You mean for the whole system. I won't get into that. But if someone took a million dollars from a 0.00001%'er and gave it to a struggling blue-collar family, I think that would really improve their lives, contrary to:

    @xaade said:

    No one's life is improved by taking something away from someone else, ever.

    Rhetoric is this funny thing where it works to exaggerate slightly or in the extreme. This middle ground exaggeration - "No one", "ever" - just doesn't work on someone who isn't already convinced.

    Maybe you should have gone with:

    @xaade said:

    Now there's a solution: scoop water of out the deep end of the pool and dump it in the shallow end! You're not going to be doing that forever!



  • @Bort said:

    0.00001%'er and gave it to a struggling blue-collar family

    @Bort said:

    Now there's a solution: scoop water of out the deep end of the pool and dump it in the shallow end! You're not going to be doing that forever!

    Can I steal that?


  • Fake News

    @tarunik said:

    we put in our own microwave and fiber optic backbone (as well as radio towers and such) system out here

    Indeed, Sprint (Southern Pacific Railroad Internal Networking Telephony) has its roots in the repurposing of telecom tech from railroad-internal use to commodity long-distance phone service.



  • @xaade said:

    Can I steal that?

    How is it going to help if it's just given to you? You have to come up with your own!

    ...incidentally, I did steal it from someone else.


  • mod

    @Bort said:

    You mean for the whole system. I won't get into that. But if someone took a million dollars from a 0.00001%'er and gave it to a struggling blue-collar family, I think that would really improve their lives,

    Except, as @xaade pointed out with his lottery article, just giving people a chunk of money generally isn't a solution. People who are just given a wad of cash tend to just spend it frivolously, instead of being smart about it and investing.

    I've actually spent time helping out some of those struggling blue collar families, and you know what I found most frustrating? Many of them were spending large portions of their money on latest gen phones, gaming consoles, expensive TVs, etc. Some of them had car payments that were higher than their rent. Hell, I even came across a few families that didn't even have any furniture because they were spending money on cars and electronics instead.

    Many of these families don't need handouts, they need budgeting lessons. They don't need welfare, they need to be taught to prioritize "needs" over "wants". Instead of telling them they need a $15 minimum wage, we should be showing them that they can get by on what they have if they are more careful with their money.

    Now, I will admit that there are other families that don't fall into the group that I just described. There are families that need help, that need a leg up for a while. But if you go out among the "underprivileged", I bet you'd be surprised how many are living beyond their means.


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