How we calculated them, and what to do about them
I want to attend Marduk U now.
Until recently I'd have advocated to limit admin spending to say 5% of total payroll. Now that we have language models I suspect we can simply replace admin almost entirely, at least insofar as the small number of useful things they do (making travel arrangements and so forth), with a small number of trouble-shooters riding herd on the AIs.
As far as woke faculty go, here's a thought: cash prizes for recording the most outrageous lecture theatre misbehaviour. Make naming and shaming the bastards fun and profitable. There could also be prizes for the sickest burn during a classroom discussion. Getting $10k for making Mx. Wokerbutt turn red with apoplexy would take the sting out of the F she gives you out of spite.
The best solution is to stop having state funded public universities, full stop. If you have private universities you can do whatever you want...
I agree. I'd like to see schools in general abolished. They're just a silly anachronism at this point. We could do things much more efficiently with self-education supplemented by private tutors. Competition would naturally root out the people who can't teach. Because of tenure, this type of culling is impossible right now.
In theory, the best thing to do is to align the incentives in such a way that the problem fixes itself incrementally without the need for a top-down regulatory structure that is both expensive and can be gamed, like how supply and demand shift in response to price or how the general unspoken civic norm "don't be a total jerk or else you'll get ostracized/smacked" work 98% of the time without needing a Price-Setting Bureau or Jerk Mitigation Department to mediate/dictate/police every transaction.
Nothing can overcome the moral hazards of mass forced schooling. If abolition isn't politically expedient, unrestricted school choice/money follows the child type of policies are second best, but I worry there are grifters waiting in the wings to soak up the lucre by molding the requirements to receive such funds to meet their own needs. Thanks for doing this work, highly informative and value to have some objective data demonstrating the costs of these caustic policies.
What portion of these jobs (and costs) are required to deal with legal and regulation issues which the government creates, versus the portion which are voluntary? This paper may have some helpful points from a methodological perspective:
If you didn't see this from last year, Arnold Kling has interesting ideas on setting up alternative educational structures which chime with some of the thoughts in the comments here: