VDH on ‘The New American Helots’

by George Leef

Former history professor Victor Davis Hanson, who knows a vast amount about both ancient Greece and modern America, here compares young college graduates, burdened with debt and lacking marketable skills, with Sparta’s Helots, a half-slave, half-free class that did much of the work.

Hanson concludes, “Strip away the fancy degrees, the trendy fluff classes, the internships with prestigious employers, and the personal gadgets, and a new generation of indebted and jobless students has about as much opportunity as the ancient indentured Helots.”

A very jaundiced view to be sure, but I think it’s pretty accurate. Fifty years ago — before the college-for-all crusade got rolling — most high-school graduates could anticipate getting into work that would be self-sustaining and starting a family. Today, many college graduates can anticipate moving back in with their parents, floundering in the labor market because they’re high on self-esteem but low on ability, and devoting much of what they earn to paying off debts incurred for their dubious college credentials. 

Phi Beta Cons

The Right take on higher education.