University Education Easier Now Than in ‘65

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The Article

Students in university today are hard done by.  Right?



But you sure hear lots of students protesting how hard done by they are.  Right?



But they’re not hard done by?



I remember when I went to university—back in 1965—I thought it was tough.  Apparently that was NOTHING compared to how it is today.  Right?

No.  Completely wrong.


What do you mean?

It’s the same—or easier now, especially for poor kids.  For all intents and purposes, if you take inflation into account, it’s the same or easier for poor kids.


So why are the kids complaining so much today then?

I don’t know.  They’re wusses?  Jam tarts?  Liberals have successfully convinced them that they’re hard done by? 


I guess that’s possible.  Even the guys wear pretty ear rings and pony tails.

Yes.  And it’s all about boys marrying other boys.  That’s what’s important today.  The fact is that the students are no worse off today than they were back in 1965.


Yeah well I hear that the rich kids have it a lot easier.  The poor kids are struggling.

No.  Wrong.  Totally. Like totally, even.  Attendance in university among lower and middle income kids has actually risen since 1965. In ‘65 only 11% of students came from the bottom quartile of income.  By ‘98 that figure grew to 17%.


Yeah well rich kids’ attendance grew too.  I mean, it’s been even easier for them, being rich kids and all.

No.  That’s exactly wrong.  The opposite has happened.  The percentage of undergrads from the top quartile (the “rich kids”) declined to 35% in ‘98, from 51% in ‘65.  Less rich kids have managed to get through university than poor kids as time has gone on.  Poor kids are increasingly making it through while rich kids are decreasingly able.


Oh.  Well how about those “lies” that “bush” told us all about the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq?

Oh.  You mean the “lies” that Bill Clinton also totally believed in and agreed with?


Well anyway.  Jon Stewart says “bush” lied.

Yeah.  So did Barbra Streisand, Sean Penn, Martin Sheen, and all the Baldwin brothers.


Point taken.


Based on an in-depth study conducted by the Education Policy Institute of Washington D.C. and Toronto Ontario.

Joel Johannesen
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