It is frankly boring hearing them whingeing on about university fees (which they want subsidising but have not paid a penny towards).
Of course the ideal is for free university education to still be available. But the reality is the global economic situation does not enable that; and no it is probably not due to a few bankers but is due to crime and socialism having permeated many government systems having created a massive civil service and every citizen having unrealistic expectations of what the 'state' (i.e. their fellow citizen tax-payers) should provide: quite simply it is a system where the books don't balance and never can.
The Student Loan Scheme covers the cost of tuition fees and living costs. Poorer students may be eligible to receive grants as well. The loans only become payable after studies are completed and income has risen above a pre-determined level. If the loan has not been repaid, then after 25 years it no longer has to be repaid. This seems fair under the circumstances.
In many countries the fees are considerably higher than here (or at least in proportion to average incomes), yet it is accepted that one has to pay for what one wants, and paying for education is a good investment.
I can think of friends who, 25 years ago, enrolled on courses then not part of the universities' funding scheme and so they had to pay the full cost of the course and living costs. [ These courses (e.g. osteopathy) are now included. ] They had no choice but to fund these with ordinary bank loans, so they were graduating with £40,000+- debts, back then. There was no luxury of waiting to pay this when a particular salary point was reached; it had to be paid.
In general, people do not think twice about running up credit card debts of £5,000-, or of taking a loan for £20000 for a car, or a mortgage for a £100,000 or more. Yet there is all of this furore over £40,000 of investing in your own education and future, and via a loan that if you cannot afford to repay it, will be cancelled!
It demonstrates an abject lack of intelligence or common sense: to be protesting about cuts due to the state of the economy but costing the country money in policing that protest, and if there is any violence then damage costs taxpayers and homeowners and businesses alike, and so damages the economy further. These 'student' protesters surely don't deserve a university place.
What is this that we also frequently hear, that graduates expect a job guaranteed just because they sat for a degree? Why? Get out into real world - making use of a degree is not necessarily having a job relevant to it but in being able to apply the lessons of education learnt. To study for betterment not for salary, was the philosophy: - the current demands show that the protesters do not have ideals but greed.
If they were going to protest, why was there so little protest when Tony Blair and the Labour Party first ended free university tuition in the UK in 1998 by introducing fees for the first time, or when they upped it to the present level of £3,000- in 2004? It demonstrates that these are politically motivated protests.
Student protesters of the 1960s and 70s at least had the ideal that they wanted to study for study's sake -for the pure idealistic principal of education: did they expect a job at the end of it? - Frankly, no.
It is irresponsible of organisers to go ahead, knowing that there are elements intent on attaching themselves to the demonstrations in order to cause trouble. It is doubly so that they are encouraging school children to join the protests and potentially get caught up in troubles. Furthermore, they should be encouraging children to study, not abscond from school to satisfy the organisers' ego trip of having organised a big protest.
If students want a real cause to complain about, then it is the extortionate cost of student accommodation charges. These are generally not funding the university but large property companies which have been in cahoots with university authorities and have offered "to provide" student accommodation - at a very lucrative rent or P.F.I. package for themselves. How can a £100 per week average rents (£150- per week in London) be justifiable, for a study-bedroom in a university hall of residence (even if sometimes arranged as six bedrooms around a dedicated open-plan living area to form a 'student flat')? That is what makes the cost of studying unaffordable. Now we're talking about something to justifiably go and protest about!