The Affordable Education Act

President Obama is going to propose two free years of community college:

Obama, alongside Vice President Joe Biden and second lady Jill Biden, will tout his proposal dubbed “America’s College Promise” during a visit Pellissippi State Community College in Knoxville, Tenn., on Friday.

“What I’d like to do is to see the first two years of community college free for everybody who’s willing to work for it,” Obama said in a White House video posted Thursday evening.

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The president’s proposal would make two years of community college free for students of any age with a C+ average who attend school at least half-time and who are making “steady progress” toward their degree.

To be eligible, community colleges would have to offer academic programs that fully transfer credits to local public four-year colleges and universities or training programs with high graduation rates that lead to in-demand degrees and certificates. Community colleges must also adopt “promising and evidence-based institutional reforms” to improve student outcomes.

This is Econ 101.  Nothing in life is ‘free’.  Even if you aren’t paying for it, someone else is.  And who might that someone else be?  In this case, Uncle Sugar:

So far, that plan doesn’t have an official price tag — other than “significant,” according to White House officials. If all 50 states participate, the proposal could benefit 9 million students each year and save students an average of $3,800 in tuition, the White House said.

“Significant”.  I guess the geniuses at the White House couldn’t multiply 9 million and $3,800 to come up with $34.2 billion.  That’s just my basic estimate, and we can consider it to be on the low side because once the community colleges get hooked on that sweet, sweet federal money, the price of community college is going to skyrocket just like the price of 4-year schools (not to mention health insurance).

College Tuition

You can bet that once the community colleges accept federal money, they will have to acquiesce to the demands of the federal government with respect to admissions, facilities, nondiscrimination, etc.  First comes the money, then later the regulations.

And the people in the White House not named Obama do know that nothing is free.  They know damn well who will end up paying for this proposal:

Federal funding would cover three-quarters of the average cost of community college, and Obama is asking states to pick up the rest of the tab…

Hmmm.  That part about the funding seems familiar.  Oh yeah, that’s the way the government is paying for healthcare health insurance right now.  According to the Affordable Care Act, the feds pay 100% at the start, and a few years later the states have to pick up part of the tab.  And the states can’t afford it.  Just wait until you see what happens to state budgets if this plan is ever put into action.

Might there be other reasons for this championing of “free” community college?  Jennifer Kabbany at The College Fix provided some clues about a possible ulterior motive when she wrote about both the cost of community college and what she learned there:

…community college is not expensive. It’s not out of reach for low- to middle-class families. Not by a long shot. I paid my way through community college waiting tables at local restaurants. It was one of the best times of my life. Yes, my parents chipped in to help make ends meet, but by no means did I enjoy a free ride.

The experience taught me how to work hard, take care of myself, and be responsible and independent…I gained discipline, and came to understand the value of hard work and the enjoyment and satisfaction of a job well done.

Well, then.  That explains it.  Because there is no evidence that Mr. Obama has ever done any of those things.  And according to him and his cronies, young people shouldn’t have to do them either.  Jennifer continues:

Once again Obama – a.k.a. America’s Sugar Daddy – has shown that he wants to win the youth vote by appealing to its greedy, lazy, self-entitled side – and at the same time making them more dependent on the federal government. Because that’s how Democrats win votes.

Yep.  That’s it in a nutshell.  Today’s young people should just sit around playing with their Obamaphones while they wait for the federal government to take care of them.  All for a fistful of votes.  If this plan actually comes to fruition, it’s not going to be long before this becomes reality:

 

 

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Categories: College, Econ 101, Economic Illiteracy, Government Shenanigans, Opportunity Cost

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