The Rising Cost of Education + More

Posted on Mon 04/30/2012 by

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The Patriot Post  Brief

 

The Foundation

“The truth is that the want of common education with us is not from our poverty, but from the want of an orderly system. More money is now paid for the education of a part than would be paid for that of the whole if systematically arranged.” –Thomas Jefferson

Government

The rising cost of education

“For decades, American politicians have waxed passionate on the need to put college within every family’s reach. … The College Board, which tracks each type of financial assistance in a comprehensive annual report, shows total federal aid soaring by more than $100 billion in the space of a single decade — from $64 billion in 2000 to $169 billion in 2010. … And what have we gotten for this vast investment in college affordability? Colleges that are more unaffordable than ever. Year in, year out, Washington bestows tuition aid on students and their families. Year in, year out, the cost of tuition surges, galloping well ahead of inflation. And year in, year out, politicians vie to outdo each other in promising still more public subsidies that will keep higher education within reach of all. … Federal financial aid is a major source of revenue for colleges and universities, and aid packages are generally based on the gap between what a family can afford to pay to send a student to a given college, and the tuition and fees charged by that college. That gives schools every incentive to keep their tuition unaffordable. Why would they reduce their sticker price to a level more families could afford, when doing so would mean kissing millions of government dollars goodbye? Directly or indirectly, government loans and grants have led to massive tuition inflation. … The more government has done to make higher education affordable, the more unaffordable it has become. Doing more of the same won’t yield a different outcome.” –columnist Jeff Jacoby

Culture

“If our students are burdened with oppressive loans, why do so many university rec centers look like five-star spas? Student cell phones and cars are indistinguishable from those of the faculty. The underclass suffers more from obesity than malnutrition; our national epidemic is not unaffordable protein, but rather a surfeit of even cheaper sweets. Flash mobbers target electronics stores for more junk, not bulk food warehouses in order to eat. America’s children do not suffer from lack of access to the Internet, but from wasting hours on video games and less-than-instructional websites. We have too many, not too few, television channels. The problem is not that government workers are underpaid or scarce, but that so many of them seem to think mind readers, clowns and prostitutes come with the job. An average American with an average cell phone has more information at his fingertips than did a Goldman Sachs grandee 20 years ago. … In 1980, a knee or hip replacement was experimental surgery for the 1 percent; now it is a Medicare entitlement. American poverty is not measured by absolute global standards of available food, shelter and medical care, or by comparisons to prior generations, but by one American now having less stuff than another.” –historian Victor Davis Hanson

Political Futures

“Republicans feel an understandable anxiety about Mr. Obama’s coming campaign: It will be all slice and dice, divide and conquer, break the country into little pieces and pick up as many as you can. He’ll try to pick up college students one day and solidify environmentalist support the next, he’ll valorize this group and demonize the other. He means to gather in and hold onto all the pieces he needs, and turn them into a jagged, jangly coalition that will win it for him in November and not begin making individual demands until December. But it still matters that the president doesn’t have a coherent agenda, or a political philosophy that is really clear to people. To the extent he has a philosophy it, tends to pop up furtively in stray comments and then go away. This is to a unique degree a presidency of inference, its overall meaning never vividly declared. In some eras, that may be a plus. In this one?” –columnist Peggy Noonan

Poor Choice Of Words

Re: The Left

“The ultimate irony is that many of those who publicly promote or accept the prevailing party line on race do not themselves accept it privately. A few years ago, when a faculty vote on affirmative action was proposed at the University of California at Berkeley, there was a fierce disagreement as to whether that vote should be taken by secret ballot or at an open faculty meeting. Both sides understood that many professors would vote one way in secret and the opposite way in public. … Black civil rights attorneys and activists who denounce whites for objecting to the bussing of kids from the ghetto into their neighborhood schools have not hesitated to send their own children to private schools, instead of subjecting them to this kind of ‘diversity’ in the public schools. As for whites, author Harry Stein says that many white liberals ‘give blacks a pass on behaviors and attitudes they would regard as unacceptable and even abhorrent in their own kind.’ This, of course, is no favor to those particular blacks — especially those among young ghetto blacks whose counterproductive behavior puts them on a path that leads nowhere but to welfare, at best, and behind bars or death in gangland street warfare at worst.” –economist Thomas Sowell

Essential Liberty

“Leftists … are much more willing to subordinate and undermine the Constitution when it serves their ends, all the while paying lip service to their undying allegiance to it. Further, the left, not comprehending conservatives’ commitment to these principles, tends to believe, through projection, that conservatives operate the same way — that we, too, would casually throw the Constitution under the bus to achieve our ends. But it simply isn’t true. … We understand that for a court to judicially legislate conservative policy is just as dangerous to the Constitution — and thus, ultimately, to our liberties — as it is for it to legislate liberalism. We realize that for a conservative administration to do end runs around the legislative branch or the Constitution is as damaging to our liberties as similar abuses by a liberal administration. So please understand that when liberals abuse their power in these ways, it won’t do for them to throw out cynical claims of moral equivalence, as in ‘conservatives are every bit as guilty of these abuses as we are.’ … This is not because we are morally superior but because a vital component of our commitment to the bilateral social contract is that we protect and defend the Constitution.” –columnist David Limbaugh

The Gipper

“Governments that set out to regiment their people with the stated objective of providing security and liberty have ended up losing both. Those which put freedom as the first priority find they have also provided security and economic progress.” –Ronald Reagan

Opinion in Brief

“The U.S. soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who battled in Vietnam for more than a decade were welcomed home quietly by their families and comrades — but few of their countrymen bothered to even thank them for their service and sacrifice. Now it appears that another war has ended without a victory parade. According to an article this week in the National Journal, an unnamed ‘senior State Department official’ has declared that ‘the war on terror is over.’ … The Obama administration cannot seem to figure out who our enemies really are. The once global terror organization known as al-Qaida is indeed just a shell of what it was when we were attacked on 9/11. The group has been decapitated and badly damaged. … Al-Qaida is just one of more than 80 hyper-violent radical Islamist organizations committing acts of terrorism around the world today. … Whether our president realizes it or not, radical Islamic militants from the islands of the South Pacific to Africa’s Sahel are committed to their jihad. … The words ‘win’ and ‘triumph’ are rarely heard in Washington today. That means a victory parade for the young Americans who have been fighting this war for more than a decade is unlikely.” –columnist Oliver North

Faith & Family

“New government data reveals a continuing trend of declining marriage rates. More women have never been married, and cohabitation rates have increased steadily. And more children are born outside of marriage than ever before. The consequences of these trends include lower economic prosperity for families and an array of poorer outcomes for children. Tragically, as marriage declines, even the very physical safety for women and children is compromised. … The Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that never-married women are over four times as likely to be a victim of domestic violence compared to married women. … Additionally, children living outside of married, biological-parent homes have a far greater probability of experiencing physical and sexual abuse. Most notably, children living with a single parent and the parent’s romantic partner are approximately 10 times as likely to be physically abused and 20 times as likely to be sexually abused. Even children living with both biological parents are at heightened risk of physical abuse (over four times as likely) and sexual abuse (nearly five times as likely) if their parents are not married. As marriage rates decline, more women and children are exposed to living situations that jeopardize their safety. As policymakers look to ways to address violence against women, rather than expanding top-down approaches of questionable effectiveness, efforts to promote and strengthen marriage are critical.” –Heritage Foundation’s Rachel Sheffield

Reader Comments

“Regarding Mark Alexander’s essay, I proudly served my country 1966-1969, U.S. Army. Let me assure you & others that no loss is ever forgotten.” –Eugene

The significance of my oath? When I was 17 years old, I enlisted in the USAF and took my first oath to defend the Constitution. When I was 21, I took the second oath to do so when I became a police officer in a mid-size city. When I was 23, I took the same oath when I became a Dallas police officer. The oath to defend and protect the United States Constitution is sacred to me. I have no use for those who would try in any manner to overturn, shred, or sidestep it.” –Douglas

Student loans? I never paid off any student loans. I worked full time, went to school at night, paid for classes and books as I enrolled for them. My parents paid for my first year in a community college as a full-time student. After that, I paid for my own.” –David

What do I think of Mitt Romney? He’s certainly not a perfect candidate, but then who is? He will do a much better job than the current White House resident. We can’t afford to go even further into debt, and with a Romney win we can start reversing ObamaCare, if the SCOTUS doesn’t do it first!” –Jim

The Last Word

“Every liberal in public life has called for abolishing the Second Amendment. Now why is that? I happen to know a number of liberals who own guns. What’s more, rich liberals who don’t own guns have security people on their payroll who carry them. Even anti-gun advocate Sen. Dianne Feinstein was once found to be packing a heater in her purse, and yet, with a single voice, liberals squeal for the abolition of all firearms. The only reason for all this hypocrisy is because some influential liberal along the way decided it was a divisive issue which could be used as a wedge between them and the rest of us. How else could a Chicago punk at a San Francisco fund raiser be so certain that he would derive laughter, applause and huge campaign donations, from a bunch of limp-wristed fat cats by demeaning his betters as ‘those who cling to their guns and their religion’? For good measure, he was well-guarded at the event by a squad of Secret Service agents armed to the teeth. … The truth of the matter is that if liberals were as smart as they claim, they’d be conservatives.” –columnist Burt Prelutsky

Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Nate Jackson for The Patriot Post Editorial Team

*****

(Please pray for our Armed Forces standing in harm’s way around the world, and for their families — especially families of those fallen Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, who granted their lives in defense of American liberty.)

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