Clarey's first book is a blunt indictment of the scam that is American higher education. A trillion dollar fraud, which brought financial ruin and misery onto thousands of American young people. More importantly, Clarey's slim tome warns youngsters away from tens of thousands of dollars in debt and years of miserable, unemployed existence. However, even this powerful little book has its faults.
A glaring omission of "Worthless" is the fact that he never mentions affirmative action, mass immigration, outsourcing and "free" trade - the Four Horseman of America's decline. Affirmative action prevents qualified White non-deviant male students from getting the jobs they deserve, a situation especially dire in liberal arts, MBA programs, and law schools - the three areas Aaron Clarey despises the most. The STEM area of study, which Clarey recommends his readers major is victim to F-1 and H-1B visas. The former swamps colleges with foreign students, squeezing out American ones, and the latter takes away jobs and depresses the wages of qualified American workers, many of them graduates of STEM majors, that Clarey so confidently recommends. Out-of-control outsourcing and the terminal decline of American manufacturing also disproportionately target these same programs.
The reason for Clarey's omission seems to be a libertarian disregard for demographic and political factors when analyzing the economy. Pat Buchanan in his seminal "Death of the West" calls this mistaken thinking "the heresy of Economism", which is essentially "mirror-Marxism". But let us not judge Aaron Clarey too harshly in this regard, he seems to be much more paleoconservative and politically incorrect than he lets on.
Another one of Clarey's recommendations is a career in the skilled trades, as opposed to majoring in "worthless" liberal arts degrees. The amount of schooling needed is much less, the starting salaries are higher, and employment prospects are excellent. All very true. However, the reality is that most young people do not want to be plumbers or electricians. And I am not only talking about liberal yuppies from Ivy League families. The truth is that most tradesmen encourage their kids to go to college and get a white collar job. This has not much to do with prestige, but with the fact that a man can rarely be able to work as a plumber at 65, but can easily work as an accountant, a physician, or an attorney. The reason is that most trades involve hard, if not back-breaking physical labor.
Another issue, unmentioned by Clarey is the fact that American grade school education in math and the hard sciences is so poor that most prospective college students have neither the skills, nor the desire to major in STEM college majors. How can one want to be a chemical engineer, when he only took one year of chemistry, in an over-filled class, with a burned out teacher who was an education major and only cares about fulfilling the quotas set by the state and federal government bureaucrats?
But all these omissions do not detract from the fact that Clarey's book is a welcome demolition of the myths perpetrated by the education mafia. Every junior and senior in high school should read and re-read it.
Eugene Girin is a New York-based attorney and commentator.