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News UK's Tuition Fee Protest (Images)

  1. Dec 10, 2010 #1
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 11, 2010 #2


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    Some great images!

    I don't really know what to make of the protests. On the one hand I'm very supportive of the students not wanting to pay £9000 a year since it will simply make education unattainable for a lot of people. On the other hand, the violence is unacceptable. Though, I suppose, most of the violence was not by students but rather anarchists.
  4. Dec 11, 2010 #3
    It is a complex matter, I suppose. It could be argued the mere presence of riot police elevates the tension in an already tense situation; on the other hand, it is possible a few rabble rousers take advantage of the situation and create trouble.

    I think the police were using a technique called "kettling", used to block access to restrooms, water, or other necessities and slowly wear down protesters, or so the theory goes. Seems absurd to me, since a hungry, thirsty person will probably become more aggressive. In my opinion, the police should insert small teams of police officers in the crowd and remove those protesters that incite others to more aggressive behavior; the "inciter(s)" do not necessarily have to be arrested, but they could be detained for a few hours. It simply does not look good for the police if they start cracking skulls, even if the protesters are a rowdy bunch; the general public will always perceive the police as the big dog and the protesters as the underdog.

    And while I have no problem with violence against the government, I think the protesters should not have behaved so violently just because of a tuition hike. Granted, access to education is important, but I would prefer if the use of violence against the government is used as a last resort and only when the government is clearly unjustifiably and inhumanely oppressing its citizens.*

    *Yes, I do believe certain forms of oppression are justifiable and humane, such as paying taxes, not smoking in certain locations, or not consuming alcohol in certain locations.
  5. Dec 12, 2010 #4
    Did the police release the identities or details of the people that were detained?
  6. Dec 13, 2010 #5


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    So all of the students are violently protesting the government releasing universities from arbitrary tuition limits? Are they really using violent force to try and FORCE the universities into government slavery?!

    There's so much wrong with this, I don't even know where to start...
  7. Dec 13, 2010 #6
    Img 24, I guess the third officer from the right didn't get the memo.
  8. Dec 13, 2010 #7
    As much as I disagree with the violence, if the government are going to totally ignore the people who put them where they are, what do they think is going to happen? It's not like this hasn't happened before.

    Plus the fact the Lib Dems promised one thing an then did a total U-turn. Anyone else would be prosecuted under the trade descriptions act.
  9. Dec 13, 2010 #8
    TANSSAAFL, people.* When you demand lower taxes, more government action, less government spending, more government oversight, less government intrusion, more government programs (like tuition subsidies), less crime, more police...

    ...you're pulling the cat six ways to Sunday. Something's gotta give, and it's not the cat.

    We had a similar problem over here a couple of centuries ago. We solved the problem easily enough.

    No, I'm not advocating revolt. It would help, however, if you were to start voting out those who wrongly believe governments exist for the sake of the government, and vote in those who realize that governments exist of the people, by the people, and for the people, and that when they cease to exist for those reasons, they should cease to exist at all.

    *"There ain't no such thing as a free lunch." - Robert A. Heinlein
  10. Dec 13, 2010 #9
    Mugs, I'd point out that the Lib Dems were voted in because they promised to eradicate tuition fees amongst other things - they had a huge student backing.

    They did a complete u-turn on this promise and now the fees are being tripled.

    This is one of the major factors in the violence.

    I'd also add that the government is spend £10 billion+ on the olympic games. If there was ever a project that could be cut to save money that should have been it, not going straight for students. Plus, they were bidding on the world cup. What sort of country cuts monetary support for 16-19 year olds to remain in school for higher education and raises university tuition fee costs and causes thousands to be made redundant and then turns round and keeps the olympics and tries to bid on the world f****** cup. We need those like a hole in the head.
  11. Dec 13, 2010 #10


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    Just to be clear though:

    1. UK gov't makes law arbitrarily limiting university tuition to an "affordable" level, with no regard to how much such an education actually costs...
    2. Lots of people start going to school because it's "cheap."
    3. Universities complain saying they can't stay in business without hiking up tuitions.
    4. Government decides to raise limit (although the amount is still arbitrary).
    5. Students violently revolt, without any regard towards WHY the tuition has to be raised...

    Seriously, this is such a clusterf--- I can't believe it.

    This is what happens when a bunch of people are dependent on an un-funded government program and it comes crashing down...
  12. Dec 13, 2010 #11
    There are a number of factors involved, far more than you're applying here.

    Firstly, the quality of teaching at universities is poor and does not justify a 6000 hike to the prices. I speak as an Aero Engineering student.

    Add to this the lying of the politicians to get into office, plus the fact we can apparently afford the olympics and a world cup bid and you're going to get riots.

    I'd also point out that last year there were record university applications, on the grounds that there were no jobs for people leaving school, so the only option was go on the dole or go to uni. Some unis turned people away I believe.

    You also have to look at the issue of people not being able to afford university anymore. You create an elitist education system.

    The government need to realise something, if people don't have jobs and can't go to university, they are going to end up on the dole. The government is then paying for them.
  13. Dec 13, 2010 #12


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    Universities should be run like businesses, and ask whatever they want for tuition. If it isn't worth it, don't go there!

    How much money does an Olympics or World Cup bring in for local businesses though? The Gov't can't spend anything on anything else if students want free money?

    Ok, higher demand means higher prices in a properly-functioning market situation. Artificially lowering prices through the gov't will create a shortage (as we're seeing).

    But people don't have a "right" to an oxford education, and it's immoral to use the govt's guns to force them to give it to you...

    Another reason the government shouldn't be involved at all!
  14. Dec 13, 2010 #13
    So the poor can only go to the 'lesser' universities they can afford? Yep that's fair.
    Students are required to pay back student loans plus interest, it isn't free money. Let's not make things up here.
    Oxford isn't always the best, but the best universities will start charging more and you end up with only the rich going to the best places. Hardly fair is it. I'm born poor therefore I'll only be able to get lower paid jobs and my kids will be born poor and so on and on...
    But they end up with the burden either way (well actually the student loans company is private I believe).
  15. Dec 13, 2010 #14
    These points are wrong.

    Firstly, the government limited tuition fees and they subsidise the additional cost.
    Now they have withdrawn some of that funding and universities need to rise tuition costs to cover the loss.

    Not much on it, but shows why the rises are needed: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-11677862
  16. Dec 13, 2010 #15


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    If you can't afford to pay for it outright, you'd better work hard in high school and get a scholarship. My Dad always told me- "fair" isn't always "equal." Is it "fair" that there are people with more money than others in the first place?

    So, what are they rioting about?

    Slippery slope argument, and invalid. I went to a state university, not ivy-league or anything. Grades, hard work, and networking make all the difference. There are lots of people that don't even go to college, its a fact of life.

    Look the fact is a university has certain costs associated with their curriculum. They need money to attract the best teachers and have the best facilities. If you limit the money the university gets, you aren't giving the best education to everyone; you're lowering the bar because they have less to work with (and they might go out of business because of it).
  17. Dec 13, 2010 #16


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    Would you advocate the government also mandate the price of all housing? Otherwise the poor would have to live in cheaper accommodations than the rich, and how can that be fair?
  18. Dec 13, 2010 #17


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    Welcome to social democracy. The irony is that while the realities of economics seem to be forcing European countries to cut away at their socialist policies, in the face of the same economic problems, we're adding more. Horay for the strongest democracy in the world!
  19. Dec 13, 2010 #18
    Instead of leaving with £9000 of tuition fee debt, they leave with £27,000 tuition fee debt.
    Certain universities have better employability than others. You can work as hard as like in some universities and your chances of getting a job are still less than someone who comes out of Cambridge.
    The universities received some funding from the student and the rest from the government. The government are now removing some of that funding and as such need tuition fees to go up to cover it. The universities weren't necessarily limited before as the government covered the shortfall.
  20. Dec 13, 2010 #19


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    In the US we have a variety of tuition assistance programs, including loans. A university degree has a payback of more than 10:1, so most people should be able to afford a student loan.

    And by the way, fair? How do you define fair? Is it it fair to force me to pay for your college education? That doesn't seem fair to me. Capitalism is the ultimate in fairness. Everyone gets exactly the same opportunities and if you rise to the challenge, you get rewarded. What could be more fair?
  21. Dec 13, 2010 #20


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    Why is that ironic?
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