The older generations are trashing the environment younger generations will have to live in, and also making it harder for them to have a decent economic life.http://chronicle.com/article/25-Years-of-Declining-State/144973/
You can look up how the Share of revenue coming from state support for a college has changed between 1987 and 2012. You can do a search for the college of you choice.
Eg., for University of Alabama at Huntsville
1987 : 43.9%
2012 : 24.7%
The Great Cost Shift Continues: State Higher Education Funding After the Recession
March 6, 2014
As student debt continues to climb, it’s important to understand how our once debt-free system of public universities and colleges has been transformed into a system in which most students borrow, and at increasingly higher amounts. In less than a generation, our nation’s higher education system has become a debt-for-diploma system—more than seven out of 10 college seniors now borrow to pay for college and graduate with an average debt of $29,400.1 Up until about two decades ago, state funding ensured college tuition remained within reach for most middle-class families, and financial aid provided extra support to ensure lower-income students could afford the costs of college.
As Demos chronicled in its first report in the The Great Cost Shift series, this compact began to unravel as states disinvested in higher education during economic downturns but were unable, or unwilling, to restore funding levels during times of economic expansion. Today, as a result, public colleges and universities rely on tuition to fund an ever-increasing share of their operating expenses. And students and their families rely more and more on debt to meet those rising tuition costs. Nationally, revenue from tuition paid for 44 percent of all operating expenses of public colleges and universities in 2012, the highest share ever. A quarter century ago, the share was just 20 percent. This shift—from a collective funding of higher education to one borne increasingly by individuals—has come at the very same time that low- and middle-income households experienced stagnant or declining household income.
The Great Recession intensified these trends, leading to unprecedented declines in state funding for higher education and steep tuition increases:
Average tuition at 4-year public schools now consumes more than 15 percent of the median household income in 26 states. Average total cost—including room and board—consumes more than one third of the median household income in 22 states.
With $1.2 trillion in outstanding student loan debt and climbing, student loan debt is now substantial enough to affect our overall economy as indebted graduates find it harder to buy a home or a car.
Every state but one—North Dakota—has cut per-student funding since the Great Recession in order to help close wide budget gaps. Nationwide, these cuts have averaged $2,394 per student, or 27 percent.