Wendy Brown, a celebrated member of the political science department at Berkeley, argues elegantly for the need to reverse the savaging of public education in California.
Here is a version with my highlights.
Here is video of her recent (2009) analysis of the effects of privatization of the university.
Other resources for understanding the situation of education in the California:
Several informed professors and students explain the issues very well on Democracy Now!
(and Laura Nader’s op-ed from last summer still poses all the questions quite well)