Thursday, April 9, 2009

"Gregoire: Raise tuition 14%"

From the Seattle Times Front Page Wednesday, April 8, 2009. (
Headline: "Gregoire: Raise tuition 14%"

I sent to the Seattle Times the following Letter, which hasn't been published:

The Return of the Company Store

Little understood is the relationship between increasingly higher college costs and government participation in higher education. In today's article, "Gregoire: Raise tuition 14%" it becomes starkly evident. Coming before Gov. Gregoire's proposal were "increases to federal Pell grants and education tax credits" from which, according to the article "families earning up to $160,00 would be no worse off" after the tuition increases "for the first year anyway". So here's how it works. The federal government takes some of the income tax money from citizens of Washington and turns around and offers some of it back for higher education. The state government seeing this "new money" coming into the state for higher education, raises the prices for said higher education. Everything's hunky dory except for the second year. Then perhaps grants aren't sufficient, so students and their families borrow from the government to pay for college. They become indebted -- financially and emotionally -- to the government. Like a company store. So think of the cause and effect (supply and demand) for the huge inflation in college costs, and remember it began when our federal government started interfering in higher education. This is the government we want?

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