Thursday, 18 April 2019

Cost Versus Reality

It costs (between fees, tuition, room, board, meals, beer money, gas money, clothing, etc) around $32,000 a year to attend the University of Tennessee.  So you look at the kid, at age 18, and even if you were devoted to your son/daughter.....the idea of funding them for $130,000 over four years?  It'd drive you nuts.

If there came any hint of boozing up, missing classes, or some whacked-out relationship ruining their attitude about school, most folks would blow-up and get highly frustrated over the situation.

This is one of the little issues that never get discussed.

What if the kid wasn't all that enthusiastic over their degree choice, or felt 'lost' after twelve months of college?  What if the kid was consuming two cases of beer weekly by the end of the first semester?  What if the kid had picked a class with some nutcase professor, and almost a thousand dollars was wasted on knowledge material that was worthless?  What if the kid went through some dramatic break-up with some honky-tonk gal, and lost all desire to finish up the degree?

A lot has changed since the 1970s, and this one issue....the current cost of a college degree, has reached the level where you have to stand there with 'Junior' and ask forty questions over their choice of a college, and sixty questions over their choice of a degree, then every month you have to ask about partying, boozing, and attendance in class.  It's become like buying a $90,000 BMW sports car, or spending $30,000 for a championship horse. 

The Marginalized Time

I don't read Time magazine anymore.  It's been fifteen years since I last picked it up (at an airport), and if you go back over 25 years....I've read less than six editions.  As a kid, I probably picked it up at least once or twice a month.  My take is that it basically ran out of 'value' somewhere in the late 1990s, and people started to quote or talk about their articles....less and less.  Part of this problem was the arrival of CNN, and part of it due to articles being written in a way to 'bait' you.

I would take a guess that you could go into a small southern town of 2,000 folks, and find fewer than twenty subscriptions today from the residents.  It's virtually guaranteed that the doctor or dentist of the town will subscribe, and the local high school will be getting a copy.  Beyond that, it's of limited value.

I noted some news source from today quoted up the newest Time 'article'....they'd gone and selected their one-hundred folks from around the globe who are the most influential.  Curiously,Justice Kavanaugh made it on the list, and the gal who accused him of rape/sexual assault, Christine Blasey Ford, also made it on the list.

You could throw the picture of Kavaugh and Ford up on the wall with 98 others, and ask folks to identify it.  I doubt if you could get more than 5-percent of people who identify both of them.  If you asked folks if they were 'influential'?  I suspect the vast majority would start laughing and question how you'd make up such a list.  In the minds of most, their local pharmacy guy, or car-mechanic guy are more influential than Ford or Kavanaugh. 

Was the 'deck' stacked when this influential list was cranked out?  One might suspect that.  But does it even matter?  Are there even any readers consumed with knowing the influential hundred, or for that matter reading Time on a regular basis?  I have my doubts.  Maybe it is still the number one magazine for dental waiting rooms, or tire shops....but beyond that, does anyone quote them anymore?