That degree hanging on your wall is as worthless as a piece of toilet paper

I never went to college so I missed out on all the keg parties and, apparently, a surplus of good grades.

Contrary to the concept of school as you knew it growing up, A’s are pretty easy to come by these days. In fact the only thing you have to work really hard to get are D’s and F’s. In college today, an A is over four times as common as a D or an F combined.

It’s a drastic change from the 15% of students who received  A’s in 1960.

The pool is a little higher today. Ok, it’s a lot higher. If you look at this chart you’ll see that 43% of all letter grades given today are A’s.

Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 2.10.10 PM

And this sort of makes sense if you think about it. No one wants to pay $40,000 a year to hear that they’re dumb.

College is one of the rare businesses in which you pay them and at the end of the experience they tell you how well they did. If you’re a parent and you send your kids to school and they get A’s you feel good about the purchase. But if your kids get F’s you feel like they wasted your money.

And amazingly these institutions of higher learning, that do little other than indoctrinate kids against the evils of capitalism, sure do understand incentives.

It may be hard to get into an Ivy League school, but according to Walter Williamsprofessor of economics at George Mason University, that’s where the hardship ends.

According to his research, our 1.1 trillion dollars in college debt is sure buying some awesome grades at some high brand schools.

Take Brown University for instance.  Two-thirds of all letter grades given at Brown University are A’s.

At Harvard, fifty percent of all grades were either A or A-. And 91 percent of seniors graduated with honors.

I’ve got news for you if 91 percent of people are graduating with honors, it’s not honors.

Eighty percent of the grades given at the University of Illinois are A’s and B’s.

At Columbia University, fifty percent of students are on the Dean’s list.  I’ve got news for ya if 50% of students are on the Deans list,  it’s not the Deans list. It’s just a list of half of the school.

And how about Stanford? Only 6 percent of student grades at Stanford were a C or below.

Or let’s take the case of the University of Michigan, the average GPA was 2.57 in 1950. Let’s watch it go up up up up to 3.27 today.

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As you look at the average GPA skyrocket, ask yourself this question. Do you think our kids getting smarter by this much?

I’m going to guess no—but they totally should get an A for Effort!

With kids spending 19 hours a day on Twitter, it’s highly suspicious to see GPA’s skyrocket. And business leaders are becoming more skeptical of potential employees’ inflated grades.

When business leaders were asked if college students are prepared for the workforce, only a third of them said yes. And only 11% strongly agreed.


We’re putting our kids into six figure debt for 11% of businesses?

Whenever I talk about college, people say you don’t understand, no one will hire you if you don’t have a degree!


That’s true, in one quarter of American businesses. And yes, if you want to be a neurosurgeon, you should probably have a piece of paper that says neurosurgeon on it. But six figure debt and the freshman 15 only gets you an advantage at one quarter of American businesses?

This is the type of scam that makes Bernie Madoff shudder with jealously.

Oh and by the way, a huge chunk of your tax dollars are going to pay for it.

How is the Obama Administration dealing with this? They’re trying to create more incentives to inflate grades by offering more cash to colleges that graduate students on Pell Grants.

Pretty soon this is going to be Zimbabwe. Their inflation got so bad that everyone in the entire country was a trillionaire but no one had any real money.


We’re becoming a country where everyone is on the honor roll but nobody knows what they hell they’re doing.

The above is based off the “Anti-Social” segment from The Wonderful World of Stu on TheBlaze TV. Watch the highlights below:

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  • landofaahs

    That’s not really true Glenn. That degree makes a great deal of difference if you were a fellow graduate of the interviewer. Do not shun education or even the shingles they bestow on you. All knowledge has the possibility to be a curse or a blessing. Certain degrees can open doors but over time it “HINGES” on BS talks but money walks.

    • Krimsen King

      nice… but BS doesn’t talk, money doesn’t walk… BS confuses, and money… well, money confuses a great deal too…

  • Deckard426

    The average GPA went up at Michigan when football players no longer had to take classes.

  • Connor

    So you are saying that college is like politicians they get paid to lie. Also does this mean Mike Rowe was right?

    • Krimsen King

      Yes, college today, like our politicians, is entirely up for sale. For profit. It gets us the best politicians and education money can buy. Unfortunately, that’s all it gets us…

      • Krimsen King

        money can’t buy everything…

  • Publius II

    After several years of unemployment I decided to return to college and finish a Master of Architecture degree that I had started nearly 25 years earlier. I was astounded to see the grade inflation taking place and the absolute apathy of the professors towards
    education. Although to be fair much of it is driven by the bureaucracy and the threat
    of lawsuits.
    One course in computer rendering was a joke. The majority of class time was spent listening to anecdotes. Although I received an A in the course I have little to show for the inordinate amount of time spent trying to complete the assignments without
    proper instruction. When I complained I was treated as if I was crazy for
    complaining about having received the A. Personally I would rather earn a C
    than be given an A but I fear today’s students have no such ethical qualms.

  • Miptobeous

    This is just a small part of the picture. Maybe as far as first time hires are concerned, a degree means nothing. However, there are many fields where a degree IS required. Engineering, Law, Medical, and a host of other fields REQUIRE degree’s or certifications. Also, most schools offer the opportunity to Co-Op with companies, which allows students to make connections that they most likely would not have made before. The degree is not worthless, because even if it doesn’t matter as much for getting you an awesome job straight out of school, it sets you ahead of the pack for advancement, as long as you have the work ethic. That all being said, it is a culture of laziness that expects a piece of paper to do all the talking for them. I do agree that there are many schools that allow students to slip by and/or award grades that are not deserved. However, college isn’t the real world, and the real world is going to sort out the fakes from the real deal. If you have the knowledge, work ethic AND the degree, you will have an advantage.

  • James LaBarre

    My wife keeps insisting that our daughter (currently 8 years old) should go to college. I keep pointing out that a college degree will probably mean nothing by then, and she may be better off attending a trade school (I also point out that I will strongly discourage her from going into the computer field ).

    • Watch it

      Why would you want to discourage her from computers? Or anything for that matter? My dad discouraged me from one field and pushed something else. I followed his wishes and was miserable with it until I finally followed my own path.

      • James LaBarre

        Perhaps I should rephrase that, then. I will teach her how much the computer field will *SUCK* by the time she graduates from high school.

        • Watch it

          Do you really think it will suck? Why?

          It might if they let in all those new immigrants for technical jobs – the hiring companies just want cheap labor – there isn’t a drought of workers in the field. That is a proven lie, but our Congress gets campaign money from them.

          She may not want to go into computers anyway. She might want to be any number of other things…. maybe a ballet dancer? a journalist? an air force pilot? an accountant?

        • Road Less Traveled

          It won’t suck. Technology is the way of the future. Most traditional jobs, not tech, will be outdated by the time your daughter is of age. That is the one field NOT to discourage. Why not discourage something that will be outdated?

    • bill moore

      Being in the computer field, I can tell you how it will suck. Wages will be in the toilet because as soon as they take over the house, senate, and white house in 2016, with a flood of low paid tech workers via the H1B visa program. “Election-year legislation to allow high-tech companies to bring in up to 200,000 foreign workers annually faces hurdles in the House despite overwhelming Senate support for the measure.” In 5 years, they will have imported 1 million in cheap high tech labor which will destroy wages. Grab your ass people and make sure the petroleum jelly runs freely.

  • Guardian

    Wait until they see how dumbed down the kids are and how poor the college entry exam scores are after these kids have been educated via Common Core.

    • Road Less Traveled

      Except, the common core is made to assure that kids actually have a range of fundamental skills and not huge variation in fundamental skills. Can you actually give me logical and evidence-based (not hysteria) reason why the concept of a common core is bad? Every other developed country has something like that, and most have higher test scores.

      • Guardian

        Not true. Their programs aren’t the same as CC.

        Sandra Stotsky (a leading education reform scholar) who served as a senior associate commissioner in the Massachusetts Department of Education and worked on the National Validation Committee for the Common Core State Systemic Initiative, writes in the Wall Street Journal that the national standards won’t help students get into selective colleges. She says that Common Core national standards are leaving students unprepared for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) as they “…. who study under these standards won’t receive anywhere near the quality of education that children in the U.S. did even a few years ago…”

        The new standards are forcing lessons to revolve around data and
        testing with methods and strategies that are counter-intuitive. “The
        standards were created by private organizations in Washington, D.C., without input from teachers or parents and absent any kind of study or pilot test to prove its effectiveness. In fact, the only mathematician and the only ELA [English Language Arts] expert on the validation committee refused to sign off on the standards because they are inadequate,” according to Glyn Wright, executive director of The Eagle Forum.

        This is just one testimony from an expert.

  • Road Less Traveled

    Dude, yes, I agree that grades are inflated. However, I now attend Columbia for grad school, and some courses are really difficult or challenging, even if the grades are inflated. If they didn’t inflate them most people would fail or have D’s and C’s, given the super high expectations. Where grade inflation is bad is in places where both the expectations are low AND grades are inflated. But still, holding all other variables constant, higher education pays off and also creates more aware individuals. From what I can tell, people like you and Glenn Beck think that the media doesn’t tell the truth. Well, as both a person that was a former middle school and high school teacher AND has college degrees, most kids aren’t told any kind of harsh truths about history, the media, or our government until the enter either a college classroom or do personal research. And, most people that don’t go to college end up having a lower level of generalized education such as historical or geographical knowledge for example. People who don’t go to college and are profoundly self-educated or successful are the outliers, not the average. My hat is off to them non the less, and I am not claiming that people who don’t are less intelligent nor made necessarily the wrong choice.

  • Road Less Traveled

    “That’s true, in one quarter of American businesses. And yes, if you want to be a neurosurgeon, you should probably have a piece of paper that says neurosurgeon on it. But six figure debt and the freshman 15 only gets you an advantage at one quarter of American businesses?”

    Such surveys and the way in which it is asked are questionable. A bachelors is the new “high school degree,” and if there are many applicants, the one with the higher degree will get the job unless one has amazing experience.

  • Krimsen King

    This is what happens when your entire education system is based solely on PROFIT rather than learning and knowledge. A healthy education system, like healthcare, can never ever be solely profit-based. It reduces students to commodities, and teaches them only to make more profit, not true knowledge of the world. Are wealthy people just more deserving of education, do you suppose?

  • JoHn Schilling

    Just listened to the pat & stu podcast for today, and I have to add to your analysis of best colleges – whether or not college will be worth it depends completely on degree choice. My undergraduate was in Electrical Engineering at New Mexico Tech. Total cost around $26k and average STARTING wage for my major was over $60k.









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