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Pell Grant Takes a Hit...The Economics of War

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  • Pell Grant Takes a Hit...The Economics of War

    The maximum award of the federal Pell Grant program,
    created to encourage low- and middle-income students
    to attend college, covered more than 80 percent of
    public-college tuition a quarter-century ago but
    covers only about 40 percent today. Faced with high
    tuition, up to 25 percent of the low-income students
    with grades and scores that make them prime college
    material no longer even apply.

    Given the importance of a college education for
    upward mobility, Congress should be rushing to bring
    this important program up to strength. Instead, the
    federal Education Department is pushing a process
    that could cause 85,000 students to lose their Pell
    grants entirely and hundreds of thousands of others
    to receive less federal aid.

    The problem is a pending change in the federal
    formula that determines how much Pell aid families
    get, based on their incomes and the state taxes they
    pay. The formula was supposed to be revised yearly,
    but went untouched for a decade. Then suddenly, the
    Education Department revised the formula — but used
    state tax data from 2000, before the recession that
    has sent state taxes rising again.

    The Education Department blames the Treasury
    Department for the delay in updating the formula,
    saying the I.R.S. produced the needed data only
    recently. It seems more likely that the government
    simply backed off the revisions in the 1990's so as
    not to cause harm at a time when the Pell grants'
    value was eroding and tuition was rising sharply.

    Why is the Bush administration suddenly pushing for a
    revision based on outdated numbers at a time when the
    unemployed are having trouble keeping their children
    in school? The members of Congress who say the
    revisions should be put off until the government
    gathers more current tax data are right. But
    tinkering with the awards formula will do nothing for
    the tens of thousands of poor and working-class
    families who are being priced out of college. To deal
    with that problem, Congress will need to finance the
    Pell programs so the grants come closer to the real
    cost of higher education.
    -New York Times

    "Leave no child behind"...Sounds great in a campaign
    but the only incentive the Bush administration seems
    to be giving the lower middleclass is the GI bill.

    Perhaps he is trying to ensure there will be plenty
    of troops for his next BUSHfire war.

    I support our troops and appreciate everything that
    the men and women of our armed services put on the
    line. I also appreciate the need to use appropriate
    force when necessity demands. But to Paint Saddam as
    the next Hitler...come on. The more I see how
    Operation Iraqi Freedom unfolded, and how the policy makers
    have declared war on social/educational programs back
    home the more disillusioned I become. I have never
    believed that Saddam's regime was the dire threat to
    the US that they made him out to be, and I question
    with the utmost scepticism the intelligence used to
    trump up this war. While I agree that it was an
    oppressive regime, I have a hard time seeing the
    justification for "Immediate Action" at a time when
    our economy is limping by and the only way to pay the
    bills is bleed our education system.

    The reason I harp on the war so much is because that is all I've heard Bush talk about these last 2 years. Now to see him out there with his hand out constantly to pay for the WAR is next to disgusting, while our problems on the home front go unaddressed.

    If nothing, else Bush is Highly Qualified to be a
    Weapons Inspector when his term is up...they did not
    find anything either.
    A cheap shot I know, but I still think other avenues
    may have yielded less expensive results. Look at
    Castro...did he ever prove to be the Bogey Man we
    made him out to be?

    I do not want to be inflamatory here but I am sick
    and tired of seeing our schools take shot after shot.
    I also realize that there is more to the economy then
    this war, but I think its high time politicians start
    to approach things more creatively then the tried and
    true slash and burn technique.

    Thanks for hearing me out!
    Last edited by NORAD; 29 Oct 03, 12:12.
    "Death is nothing, but to live defeated and inglorius is to die daily" - Napoleon Bonaparte.

    Michael

  • #2
    Good article, maybe this war is being used as a distraction from other issues?
    "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

    Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

    Comment


    • #3
      I understand what you're saying, but it's not the Federal governments job to send kids to college -- rich or poor.

      They offer low interest loans that any student can get. I'm still paying mine off.

      In addition, you shouldn't be punishing Bush for enforcing the law, though you'd hope they'd fix the tax problem before going forward.

      Just my two cents.

      Brian

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Scully
        I understand what you're saying, but it's not the Federal governments job to send kids to college -- rich or poor.
        So you're for the elimination of Pell Grants?
        "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

        Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Scully
          I understand what you're saying, but it's not the Federal governments job to send kids to college -- rich or poor.
          I can't say I completely support your position. I would rather my taxes go to creating doctors, nurses, teachers, engineers, etc instead of funding "terrorist alerts", Ashcroft's police state, or "Bush of Arabia's" next adventure. I don't like the ideal of kids putting themselves in debt before they have an opportunity to get a start on pursuing the American dream.

          Everyone should have an equal opportunity to pursue the American dream.

          Originally posted by NORAD
          The reason I harp on the war so much is because that is all I've heard Bush talk about these last 2 years. Now to see him out there with his hand out constantly to pay for the WAR is next to disgusting, while our problems on the home front go unaddressed.
          I don't hate Bush too much. He had the balls (or maybe was just stupid enough) to do what five administrations wanted; attempt to dominate the Middle East by force, if necessary. He stretched the truth about Saddam's WMD program because there really was no other way to convince the American people that the Middle East was so important.

          Imagine Bush saying this:

          "Good evening my fellow Americans,

          Tonight I want to talk to you about America's global position. Since the end of the Cold War, we have seen the economic rise of many nations. As a result, our global position continues to weaken. The anti-American sentiment that we've seen in South Korea and Europe are in part the clearest example of the new found economic power of our allies.

          We are faced with a difficult challenge. We must find a way to maintain our dominant position, which is responsible for global stability and prosperity. This will not be easy. Only a few regions in the world possess the abundant resources and global importance required to ensure our superpower status. It must be a part of the globe that few countries possess the will or ability to control. This way we eliminate the possibility for outside influence. Unfortunately, such conditions mean an unfavorable environment that America will need to reshape. It will not be cheap.

          The Middle East, with it's chaotic political situation, and abundant oil resources, is the only location I believe meets the need of our country. If America is able to establish political dominance in this region, our long term security and position will almost certainly be ensured.

          To show that America means business, I have decided to depose Saddam Hussein, a ruthless dictator, who has anchored American foriegn policy for more than a decade. By dethroning his regime of terror, and installing a democratic government, the United States will establish our resolve to dominating the region. Furthermore, Iraq, which borders many of the most influential countries in the region, will serve as an example, both of the promise of democracy and cooperation with the United States, as well as the consequences should regional leaders continue to use corruption and hate to achieve political power.

          The effort will be long, difficult, and likely unpopular with our allies. Few countries cherish the ideal of America achieving even greater political and economic influence over their lives. Furthermore, the Arab people, rich in culture, and fiercely loyal to their faith and freedom, will likely reject our efforts at first. Yet, America must go forward.

          For more than twenty years, my predecessors have tried to search for an less risky, more positive method of gaining dominance in the Middle East. This is an effort that began with the great Henry Kissinger's honest appraisal of the Middle East's importance to America. Ideals have been considered and rejected time and again. Unfortunately, we no longer have time to avoid what is the unavoidable.

          We as America once again stand on the brink of dominance, or submission. We must choose dominance. Some might call our efforts imperalistic. Yet, in truth, they are only angry America has decided to stand up for her own future, and not surrender our children to circumstance and fear. No matter the cost, it is less than doing nothing.

          I ask you now to pray for our nation, and the young men and women of our armed services. Many are going once again into harm's way. On their shoulder's hinge the future of our nation, and the lives of billions. They will not only be fighting for you and me, each man and woman will also be struggling to ensure all that is good for the world to enjoy, even if they don't realize this now.

          May God bless Each and every one of you.

          Goodnight"

          Two days later,

          "This is Dan Rather for CBS news. President Bush today announced that he will be resigning at noon tomorrow following widespread outrage over his imperalistic policies. Bush elected to leave office, rather than face impeachment and trial in the Senate.

          Vice President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfield, Undersecretary of Defense Wolfitz, National Security Advisor Rice, and at least a dozen other high-ranking Bush Administration officials have also resigned. As you already know, Secretary of State Powell, resigned within minutes of Bush's Mondy night Speech.

          Tonight, America is in chaos politically, as Congress struggle to find a replacements for the empty Executive Branch.

          More on this after our top story.

          Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck were married in small courthouse in Georgia. By 4pm, they were in divorce court.

          Also, Did you know Miller Lite taste great with less filling?"

          Bush simply watered his plan down to something everyone can understand. All the politicians did that. It should not be that way, but it is.
          "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Deltapooh
            "This is Dan Rather for CBS news. President Bush today announced that he will be resigning at noon tomorrow following widespread outrage over his imperalistic policies. Bush elected to leave office, rather than face impeachment and trial in the Senate.

            Vice President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfield, Undersecretary of Defense Wolfitz, National Security Advisor Rice, and at least a dozen other high-ranking Bush Administration officials have also resigned. As you already know, Secretary of State Powell, resigned within minutes of Bush's Mondy night Speech.
            I can imagine it. In fact I do every night while I sleep .
            "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."

            – Associate Justice Louis D. Brandeis, Olmstead vs. United States.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Chuck
              So you're for the elimination of Pell Grants?
              Yep. Not the Federal government's job. I have no problem with low interest loans, but we shouldn't just give money away. Of course, I'd say this about all sorts of programs and services provided by the government.

              I went from HS to Community College to State University. My entire college education cost less than $30,000. And despite my many social and psychological problems, I have a good job. Go figure.

              Besides, if you do well in High School, you will get scholarships to colleges -- my wife took that route. If all else fails, join the military and get the GI Bill.

              Take care,
              Brian

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MikeJ
                I can imagine it. In fact I do every night while I sleep .
                You sound like me when Clinton was in office. Then my home state of NY goes and elects Hillary. I think I missed a week of work over that one. 2000 was the first year since 1993 I didn't work on any political campaign and I get Hillary and just missed Gore. Needless to say, I will work on campaigns from now until the end of time just to prevent something like that from happening again. Senator Clinton...I still have nightmares about that.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Scully
                  Yep. Not the Federal government's job. I have no problem with low interest loans, but we shouldn't just give money away.
                  I disagree, it's time we become a country and not a collection of 50 seperate states. What is your view about Gallaudet University, the university for the deaf that receives the bulk of their funding from the Federal government? I'm for it but I don't think strict constitutionalist can really stomach it.
                  "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

                  Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Chuck
                    I disagree, it's time we become a country and not a collection of 50 seperate states. What is your view about Gallaudet University, the university for the deaf that receives the bulk of their funding from the Federal government? I'm for it but I don't think strict constitutionalist can really stomach it.
                    I agree, we should be one nation. But Federal funding of everything is not what makes us a unified country. I think we were more of "one nation" when we relied more on our individual communities rather than the government. If you want one nation, support one language. Support the idea of a melting pot rather than the ridiculous "tossed salad" concept liberals are trying to push. If we want a unified nation, we should stop splitting ourselves up into racial and ethnic groups every chance we get. We cause discrimination ourselves, we divide ourselves. Sorry, end of rant.

                    There are certain things the Federal government does well and should continue doing. But there are a lot of things it has jumped into that it shouldn't have.

                    With respect to Gallaudet University, I honestly don't know enough about it. Do I think kids should be given a full education paid for by the Federal government to go to any college? No, I don't think they should.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Scully
                      I understand what you're saying, but it's not the Federal governments job to send kids to college -- rich or poor.
                      They offer low interest loans that any student can get. I'm still paying mine off.
                      I am not saying that it is the Federal Governments job to fund every social program dreamed up by every bleeding heart leftest... out there. Or even everyones schooling for that matter. But the government IS in the business of educating the majority of our nations childeren, and since this is the case it has a responsibility to do it well. It can only profit by it despite certain principals of capitalism that demand a lower class citizen.

                      I think social programs are necessary, and governments may not have the implicit mandate to "support" the population, but we strengthen our country by educating our people. Lord knows we throw a ton of money into meddeling with other countries social engineering. I believe a strong America is strong at home first and then we are in a position to be strong in the world.

                      This appears to be a changing time economicly speaking. Jobs that used to be considered good professional careers are being shipped overseas to take advantage of lower pay scales, and in the case of industrial companys lower environmental/workers protection standards. The kids of my generation could get by, by striving to work FOR Microsoft some day. I think the paradigm is shifting now though and the kids of my sons generation need to strive to BE the next Microsoft...so to speak.

                      I have personal experience with this particular grant...every penny we made went to our shabby appartment, food, baby supplies etc etc when I was first married and just starting out. The Pell grant helped my wife begin her schooling, and gave us hope that things could be different. We are now better off but still utilize the "low interest" loans that the government is gracious enough to provide. These to, have been important in building us into stronger, more productive citizens, with more potential to contribute back into the system, and we continue to further our education. Sure we can talk a bunch of clap trap about personal choices etc...but life happens, and it is never "Leave it to Beaver." The most I can do is to continue to direct my life in a positive manner and do my best to educate and guide my son towards an easier path with less resistance.

                      As I stated earlier I am not particularly out to bash Bush. But, I feel the lack of a difinitive plan in this administration for domestic policy has spurred him to FOCUS on foreign affairs which he seems to feel more comfortable with. While I will not state flatly that Bush INVENTED this war because of our economic woes...I think it CONTRIBUTED to making hasty judgements based on flimsy evidence. I also think as DP so eloquently states in his State of the Union Address (Awesome Job by the Way) That he really stretched things to get the war rolling and I frankly remain unconvinced that Iraq was an Immediate threat. I feel that decisions were made to flex Americas muscles as DP also stated for the so called "good of our regime." I feel it was a costly gamble that President Bush may have ultimately lost. We will find out in the next election I suppose. While we may be able to build a temporary/or even a permanent democracy in Iraq, time will tell the value of that venture as well. I hope my jaded skeptism is misplaced, and I TRULY hope that this was not a waste of lives, money, and international relationships and that the value of this venture will unveil itself like a phoenix in the rubble of Baghdad. If it does then I will of course conceed the error of my skepticism. Until then I remain dubious, but am certainly open to listening to the ideas of my mates!

                      Again I am merely suggesting that our leaders start thinking outside of the box, and outside of party lines for that matter.

                      Silence after all, gives succor to evil men.
                      And this bunch certainly is not silent

                      Michael
                      Last edited by NORAD; 29 Oct 03, 22:54.
                      "Death is nothing, but to live defeated and inglorius is to die daily" - Napoleon Bonaparte.

                      Michael

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Deltapooh
                        ...
                        More on this after our top story.

                        Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck were married in small courthouse in Georgia. By 4pm, they were in divorce court.
                        ...
                        Ohh nooo, I missed it...
                        a brain cell

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Delta - It would seem from your above post that you believe the 'War on Terror' is just a smokescreen and the real goal is to increase American power in the Middle East.
                          "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

                          Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Chuck
                            Delta - It would seem from your above post that you believe the 'War on Terror' is just a smokescreen and the real goal is to increase American power in the Middle East.
                            Originally posted by John F. Kennedy
                            When written in Chinese, the word 'crisis' is composed of two characters. One represents danger, and the other represents opportunity.
                            I don't believe the War on Terror is a smokescreen. However, it created an opportunity for America to obtain greater dominance in the post Cold War world. I believe Bush had the right ideal, but used the wrong methods to realize it.
                            "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I too am of the opinion that the war on terror is not entirely without merit. I do get the feeling that it is being handled in a cavalier slap dash fashion that has more of a seat of your pants feel then a truely well thought out and fully realized strategy.
                              "Death is nothing, but to live defeated and inglorius is to die daily" - Napoleon Bonaparte.

                              Michael

                              Comment

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