Skip to comments.Why Not to Go to Law School
Posted on 01/28/2013 2:51:47 PM PST by eagleye85
Is a college degree really worth the expense? A recent study, authored by Richard Vedder, Jonathan Robe, and Christopher Denhart, used employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to calculate that the number of college graduates is growing at a rate disproportionate to the number of jobs requiring a college degree, reports the Chronicle of Higher Education. They question whether America spends too much on higher education, and ask whether society can afford to subsidize higher education for graduates who end up in jobs they could have landed without going to college.
The study, from the Center for College Affordability and Productivity, says that nearly half of all American college graduates in 2010some three years after the recession beganwere underemployed, holding relatively low-paying and low-skilled jobs, writes Allie Bidwell for the Chronicle. You can read the report, issued by the Center for College Affordability and Productivity, here (pdf).
This misalignment between graduates and their employers is not limited only to undergraduates. A more dramatic example can be found at law schools, whose students are burdened with, on average, $125,000 in debt, according to figures cited by Brian Tamanaha, professor at Washington University Law School and author of Failing Law Schools.
Now, 90% of law students finance their education through debt, said Tamanaha at a recent Cato Institute event. This because theyve already spent a lot of money going to undergraduate institutions, and the rise in tuition has been reflected in a remarkable rise in debt.
So if you want to get an accurate picture of the real debt situation carried by recent graduates, were talking $150,000 and up, said Tamanaha. He explained that that someone with a debt of $150,000 has a $1,800 monthly payment, and those with a debt of $125,000the averagehave a $1,400 monthly payment. These figures are astronomical and most law graduates cant pay them.
Tamanaha noted that As a consequence of this, thousands of law students will be on IBR, income-based repayment. Its a government program that reduces your monthly loan payments according to a formula related to your income. This program adds additional burdens to the taxpayer; under IBR, the remainder of your debt is forgiven after 20 years.
To further the moral hazard, law schools are now counseling students that their debt can be financed under IBR and will be forgiven eventually, said Tamanaha. Why not take out $150,000 in debt, then? (This includes undergraduate debt and compiled interest, according to the authors figures.)
I think law schools are sort of the canary in the coal mine, in this regard, right?, said Paul Campos, Professor at Law at the University of Colorado at Boulder, at the event. Campos is the author of Dont Go to Law School (Unless). Were sort of the worst.
Indeed, law students are not exempt from the underemployment described by Vedder and his co-authors in their recent study. Tamanaha said that some law schools are advertising a 90-100% employment rates. However, he noted that the Bureau of Labor statistics is predicting 22,000 openings annuallywith law schools graduating between 40,000 and 45,000 students.
“Why Not to Go to Law School?”
An honest person could not! High priced instruction in lying and distorting the truth is not a career most would choose. Unfortunately we have way too many willing to become these ethically deficient scum.
Too bad we do not have the lawyer to population ratio of Japan. Lawyers in the United States (281 per 100000 population) in Japan (11 per 100000)
Then by all means, go for it.
Otherwise, go elsewhere.
Except that the law schools don’t teach what’s necessary to be a lawyer, either. Hence, so many people failing the bar exam.
ANYBODY with a four year degree can go to lawschool.
I do mean ANYBODY.
There are more first year seats than there are students. There is a MASSIVE overcapacity of law schools. they are cash cows because government loans guarantee profit. There are no jobs and you have graduates with no connections competing with older lawyers with modest connections for what was once starting positions in law firms and government prosecutor and public defender offices.
(as a bonus, in the federal arena only DOJ lawyers become judges nowadays.)
I imagine it’d be dangerous to the federal government to have people who at some point in their lives did stuff outside government to be judging government. You don’t want to accidentally appoint some extremist who has read the Constitution for reasons other than loops and giggles, for instance, or who hears about Footnote Four precedent, for instance, without first having his brain prepared. Because coming at it dry, not knowing you must give the constitutionality of federal laws the benefit of the doubt for no reason whatsoever, it might all seem rather question-begging.
I imagine it’d be dangerous to the federal government to have people who at some point in their lives did stuff outside government to be judging government. You don’t want to accidentally appoint some extremist who has read the Constitution for reasons other than poops and giggles, for instance, or who hears about Footnote Four precedent, for instance, without first having his brain prepared. Because coming at it dry, not knowing you must give the constitutionality of federal laws the benefit of the doubt for no reason whatsoever, it might all seem rather question-begging.
Can we export some of our lawyers to Japan? Or better yet, China?
“...whose students are burdened with, on average, $125,000 in debt,...”
If they are too dimwitted to see that going in, and have no idea how repayment will be made, who wants em as an advocate anyway?
That is true of my youngest, but with only my SS check and my negative attitude about debt, any college is out of the question. Instead, the local branch of a retail giant got themselves a very bright cashier for minimum wage. And we consider ourselves extremely fortunate that a job was offered to a homeschooler with no standard diploma and no work experience.
That's a good attitude to have.
Thank you. No mortgage, no car loan, no plastic. You'd be amazed how many people have told me I am an irresponsible, selfish, fanatical fool for resisting debt even if it means no college.
When the kid turned 17, some county employees (whose job it is to "assist" low-income families) offered to "help" us acquire college loans. When I told them we weren't interested -- said I have a hard time paying my little utility bills, how am I supposed to pay back a colossal govt loan? -- they couldn't accept it and actually argued with me, to the point where they insinuated that child protective services might be interested in us. (I think CPS counted the days to the 18th birthday and decided there wasn't enough time to torment us effectively, so nothing came of it.)
They were so worked up, you'd think they got a broker's cut of the loan.
I have a low opinion of college anyway, as I live between two of them -- Bucknell and Bloomsburg -- and the stupidity and chemical abuse going on in them, not to mention the leftist politics, is something I wouldn't expose a child to, if they paid me the tuition and threw in free heat and a new car.
As an aside, my brother started college in earnest when he was about 20 y/o. Worked days and went to class at night. No partying, no debt.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.