This column by Richard Vedder, which argues that North Dakota should spend less on higher education, is somewhat of an interesting read, if only because that state is such an outlier in so many ways and because the author is such a staunch free-marketeer.

Subsidizing universities means taking money from highly productive citizens in the private market economy and giving it to a sector that some evidence shows has had no productivity growth for the last four decades. Moreover, there is no solid evidence that higher university research spending has any positive growth effect.

Jesse Singal

Jesse Singal is a former opinion writer for The Boston Globe and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. He is currently a master's student at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Policy. Follow him on Twitter at @jessesingal.