As fall approaches, hundreds of thousands of high school students are being asked that nagging question: “What college are you going to?” These students would be wise to follow the advice of Peter Thiel, a billionaire Silicon Valley investor. For most of us, college is an expensive waste of time.
Not only is entrepreneurship a nearly impossible skill to truly teach at college since true entrepreneurship boils down to risk-taking (read: outside the box thinking) and self-motivation (read: not a classroom environment) — but enormous amounts of student debt severely limit the options of graduates in the marketplace by forcing them to take jobs that cover loan costs and provide for basic living costs.
This may be the ultimate folly of college education in my eyes. How many bright, young people are stuck in the rat race of professional jobs, or worse government, who are simply unable to follow their passions, be entrepreneurial, or develop something socially useful because they took on $100,000 in student loans when they were 18 and they just are not able to take the risk due to that looming $600/mo tuition payment.
This is why the Thiel Foundation is offering $100,000 scholarships to budding entrepreneurs to drop out of college for two years and develop their ideas. At least 20 students are awarded the scholarship each year, with some impressive results.
40% of full-time students fail to get a degree in six years, and with roughly one of three college graduates in a job the Labor Department says requires less than a bachelor’s degree, it is clear that our emphasis on the need to go to college is misguided.
People are spending a large amount of time getting degrees for jobs that may never be there.
Look at that. That is meat. Juicy, delectable, delicious, wonderful meat. It is the cornerstone of our existence, the very foundation of our diets (no matter what that silly treehugger food pyramid says. I mean, it’s a pyramid. Clearly it wasn’t intended for Americans.) You get it from animals. It is animals. That tends to make folks like PETA mad (the other PETA, I mean, not the People for the Eating of Tasty Animals.) This is something we just can’t see eye to eye on.
See, a great guy named Peter Thiel—he got the very first Alumnus of the Year award from Students for Liberty this year—has decided to invest a ton of money in a new project that will create meat from a 3-D printer:
Billionaire Peter Thiel would like to introduce you to the other, other white meat. The investor’s philanthropic Thiel Foundation’s Breakout Labs is offering up a six-figure grant (between $250,00 and $350,000, though representatives wouldn’t say exactly) to a Missouri-based startup called Modern Meadow that is flipping 3-D bio-printing technology originally aimed at the regenerative medicine market into a means to produce 3-D printed meat.
While Newt Gingrich has Nate Adelson propping up his “Super PAC,” an organization supporting Ron Paul’s bid for the Republican nomination is getting some more love from PayPal founder Peter Thiel:
PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel donated another $1.7 million in January to the super PAC supporting Ron Paul’s presidential bid, according to documents released Monday.
Thiel, a billionaire who runs the hedge fund Clarium Capital, has donated a total of $2.6 million to the pro-Paul group Endorse Liberty since it was founded on Dec. 20.
He’s the largest contributor to the super PAC, which reported bringing in $2.4 million in January in addition to its late December haul of $1 million, according to the reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.
Thiel has described his views as libertarian and has promoted libertarian causes in the past. And While I’m familiar with Revolution PAC, Endorse Liberty PAC is new to me. They don’t have a website from what I can tell, but they’ve put together a half-dozen web ads promoting Ron Paul’s candidacy and views.
Here’s Endorse Liberty PAC’s most recent ad:
For years, there have been people who argue that if you don’t like the way things are here, then leave. They know that, despite its flaws, there’s not really anywhere better to go for a freedom loving guy like myself. However, there’s a movement afoot that may change all of that, and a good chunk of that is thanks to Peter Thiel.
Thiel has made a living predicting the “next big thing”. He co-founded PayPal, and was an early investor in a little website you might have heard something about. It’s called Facebook. Let’s face it, the guy isn’t exactly known for betting on losing horses.
His latest venture is also one of his most bizarre. It’s called seasteading, and the purpose of it is to create libertarian islands outside the reach of other governments which would enable libertarians to have a place to run too. The islands would be blank slates, free from onerous taxation and regulation.
“Big ideas start as weird ideas.” That’s Patri Friedman, a former Google engineer, the grandson of the Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman, and, as of 2008, when Thiel seeded him with the same initial investment sum he’d given Mark Zuckerberg four years earlier, the world’s most prominent micro-nation entrepreneur. Friedman, a short, kinetic 35-year-old with a wife and two children, maintains an energetic online presence that ranges from blogging about libertarian theory to tweeted dispatches such as “Explored BDSM in SF w/big group of friends tonight.” Four years ago, a Clarium Capital employee came across a piece Friedman had written about an idea he called “seasteading.” Friedman was soon pitching to Thiel, a staunch libertarian himself, the big, weird idea.