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What If Trump University But For Actual College, Everyone, Mandatory
Donald Trump took to his fake Xitter clone, TruthSocial, on Tuesday to announce an exciting new campaign promise: Elect him, and he’ll create a free online university to be called, with typical Trumpy flair, “American Academy.” It will teach every conceivable subject, free to all Americans and at no cost to the federal government, and best of all, it won’t teach “wokeness or jihad,” which are apparently the two top majors at most government and private colleges these days.
Also, count yourself lucky that we weren’t able to find a way to upload a copy of the video, which means you won’t have to hear that voice. You’re welcome.
Oh, hold on, found it on YouTube. You don’t have to watch, and shame on Forbes for calling this half-thought-out notion a “Massive higher education overhaul.”
Trump starts out by saying this is all necessary because Americans are just shocked to see all those students and faculty at “Harvard and other once respected universities” voicing support for “the savages and jihadists who attacked Israel,” so obviously we need a completely different alternative in higher education. Just enrolling at the community college or a state school wouldn’t do.
“We spend more money on higher education than any other country, and yet they’re turning our students into communists and terrorists and sympathizers of many, many different dimensions. We can’t let this happen.”
The institution, which is a very real thing Trump has a plan for and not just two minutes of vague claims in a video, would teach everything under the sun, the “full spectrum of human knowledge and skills.”
“Whether you want lectures, or ancient histories, or an introduction to financial accounting, or training in a skilled trade, the goal will be to deliver it, and get it done properly, using study groups, mentors, industry partnerships, and the latest breakthrough in computing, this will be a truly top-tier option for the people.”
That sounds like the product of entire minutes of planning, especially that promise that the educating will be done properly. And yes, I listened closely; he didn’t say “the latest breakthroughs in computing.” It was singular. No idea what he believes that might be. AI, possibly, or maybe the fact that you can get on the internet and still have your phone work. We think it might be a 1989 advertissement for ITT Tech.
Trump explained that, unlike his scammy “Trump University” that cheated people out of their own money by selling them more and more useless advice on real-estate investing, American Academy will be paid for by “taxing, fining and suing excessively large private university endowments,” which sounds very legal and very cool. Presidents can just apply fines and lawsuits against private university endowments if they want to, especially if it’s a campaign promise. It’s just like how Mexico had to pay for WALL.
The very best part of this entirely serious, well-thought-out proposal is Trump’s promise that the new institution will be “strictly nonpolitical, and there will be no wokeness or jihadism allowed. None of that’ll be allowed.” That’s presumably the selling point he’ll harp on if he actually keeps talking about his brilliant new plan, which of course he’s just as likely to drop in favor of a promise to eliminate climate change with a big rocket that will simply move Earth a little farther from the Sun.
Trump didn’t explain how exactly a university curriculum would be “strictly nonpolitical,” although we suspect that would mean nonpolitical things like teaching that America is the best, slavery was a sad time that has no relevance today, and the only way this great nation could be improved would be by naming Donald Trump president for life, albeit in a nonpolitical way. What exactly political science majors would study, we don’t know. Perhaps that field will become American Greatness Studies.
Politico took the trouble of pointing out that actually putting any of Trump’s vague notions into reality would require congressional action, and noted that Trump’s 2017 Big Fat Tax Cut for Rich Fuckwads actually included a “1.4 percent levy on the investment income of the nation’s wealthiest private universities,” because apparently righties have long wanted to go after university endowments. It’s not clear, Politico notes, whether the $244 million generated annually by that tax would really cover the costs of creating an entirely new national online university, but hey, there’s also the “fines and lawsuits” that’ll make the Ivies pay for Anti-Woke U, easy.
As for who’d actually run this thing, it’s obviously Chris Rufo. But Trump campaign staffers told Politico
they have yet to decide who would run American Academy, but said they would look to include private sector resources and they pointed to several potential models, including oversight by an existing government agency, a presidentially appointed board or commission, or a publicly funded private entity.
Maybe former Trump Education Secretary Betsey DeVos could recommend some for-profit colleges. Or someone like her, but who didn’t abruptly resign after January 6, 2021, because Trump hates traitors like that.
Trump also promised that the new institution would give students credit for previous study and that it would let people get the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree, but much faster. Those completing the programs would be able to get federal jobs, too, at least until federal jobs are all cut.
In conclusion, this is a very thoughtful policy proposal that, if it makes any waves with Trump donors, will eventually be half-assed into a one-page “plan” and a bunch of serious opinion columns. Should Trump actually win in 2024, expect it to be walked out about as frequently as “Infrastructure Week,” as a distraction from whatever fascist crap Trump’s trying to get away with. The full plan will be released in a very short period of time, in the next couple of weeks, and it’ll be amazing.
Should it ever actually take shape, expect a buggy website that just feeds you PragerU videos.
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