I went to GT for a BS and an MS. Could I have learned about 80% of what I learned there by getting some syllabus off the internet and hunkering down in my basement? Maybe. Would I have been motivated to do so? No, especially when I was 18. Would I have had a network of people around me for moral support and to answer questions? No. Would I have been in an environment which helped me stay focused and learn what I needed to? No. Were there times when I asked myself if it was worth it? A few. Would I have done it again? Absolutely. I have an awesome job and a great resume of education and employers and I really don't know what things would have been like if I had dropped out of high school. I am pretty sure I wouldn't be where I am now. I didn't have the wisdom or maturity when I was 18 that I do now.
Just a caveat: I was an instate resident and I got out of school without a single cent of debt.
I think most people who have been through college and are working in the field where they got their degree have no right to say anything against it. It's easy to deny one's reality in hindsight and talk about how things "could have been different" but we really won't ever know...when starting college most people are pretty "green", and that needs to be taken into account when thinking back on it as well. People are bitter right now because the job market sucks as well...imagine being in this job market without a degree at all. Yeah.