They Oppose: Because only the elite deserve a life

I’ll admit Biden’s proposal of free community college for everyone is a good one.  It may mean only Associate’s Degrees or Trade Certificates and not Bachelor’s Degrees for all, but an educated populace is better for a country.

Biden’s American Families Plan could make free college a reality

As part of a massive new spending package, President Joe Biden is calling on Congress to enact legislation to allow students to enroll in community college at no cost.

The administration’s American Families Plan calls for $109 billion to make two years of community college free for all students in addition to a roughly $85 billion investment in Pell Grants to decrease the reliance on student loans.

Under Biden’s plan, about 5.5 million students would pay no tuition or fees, the White House said.

The average year’s tuition at US community colleges is less than US$5000, With a two year diploma, people could to earn roughly $500-2000 per month more and pay higher taxes over their lifetime.  The investment in free college will pay for itself over time.

But, of course, rightwingnuts want no part of that. . .or should I say, they want no one but the wealthy to have any part of it.  Fox Nuisance has begun its usual and inevitable propaganda push to make white boomers think they’ll have to pay for everything.  Then again, why shouldn’t they?  College was cheap when they attended in the 1960s, unlike today.

‘Fox & Friends’ Argues Against Free College: ‘There’s Something Called A Scholarship’

“Fox & Friends” co-host Ainsley Earhardt has some no-cost advice for supporters of free college for all: Go get a scholarship.

Earhardt on Wednesday mocked the White House’s new spending and tax plan as she discussed it with co-hosts Brian Kilmeade and Steve Doocy ahead of President Joe Biden’s first speech to a joint session of Congress. Biden’s American Families Plan aims to spend $1.8 trillion over the next decade to reverse income inequality, including free prekindergarten and free community college.

“Think about free college,” Earhardt said. “If your family doesn’t make a lot of money, there’s something called a scholarship. You can apply for that right now. We don’t have to give free college to every single person. … If you’ve worked your tail off to get into the college, then they can give you a scholarship. When you deserve it.”

Those “scholarships” that rightwingnuts call a solution?  Academically, they are few and far between.  As for sports “scholarships”, athletes rarely receive degrees because they’re not allowed to attend classes, or the ‘degrees’ they get in basketweaving have no value in the real world.  “Skip class for practice or you lose your scholarship” is a constant threat.

Athletes are getting degrees, but does that actually mean anything?

[The NCAA claims] that it’s doing a great service to all athletes, just because those athletes get degrees. The reality? Simply getting a degree doesn’t necessarily cut it.

The NCAA’s argument ignores the fact that some degrees are worth far more than others. Athletes are routinely clustered into majors that don’t set them up to succeed later in life, mainly because those majors are easy enough for athletes to focus on their sport.

If an athlete majors in interdepartmental studies or general studies, either because that’s all they could handle or the coach tells them to, has the school done that student a service? Is that athlete really going to have a “degree to fall back on” if sports don’t work out, as the NCAA often touts?

The college sports industry will also strongly oppose free education.  If your education is guaranteed and you can play as a walk on, you can tell your coach to get stuffed and attend class instead of practice.  Young people can and may begin to choose not to put their health at risk because they don’t have to.  Sports will become an option, not a requirement.

One person who did get a “scholarship” was football player Geno Hayes.  I say was because he died on Wednesday, and football probably killed him.

Ex-NFL Linebacker Geno Hayes Dead At Age 33

Geno Hayes, a former NFL linebacker who starred at Florida State, has died. He was 33.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers confirmed his death Tuesday. He had liver disease and had been in hospice care at his parents’ home in Valdosta, Georgia.

[. . .]

Hayes told ESPN he believes his use of over-the-counter pain medications while in the NFL, as well as his family’s history of liver disease, led to his condition.

He is survived by his parents and two children, ages 8 and 13.

That is what rightwingnuts call an “education solution”?


  1. brucegee1962 says

    It used to be that Republicans were all in favor of more education. But nowadays, the more education you have, the less likely you are to vote Republican, so an educated populace is the last thing they want.

  2. says

    Mine covered my tuition at University of Michigan in the 70s. I’ve heard it no longer comes close to that. College costs seem to have outstipped scholarship values.

  3. jrkrideau says

    It may mean only Associate’s Degrees….
    From a few things I have read recently it looks like a community college can be a decent pathway into a 4-year degree in many cases. It a way it sounds a bit like an informal CEGEP approach.

  4. Prax says

    The average year’s tuition at US community colleges is less than US$5000

    What!? Less than $5000? When I bought my son into Yale and then bought him out of academic probation it cost four times as much! Clearly community colleges are far too well-funded.

    Ahem ahem, my fellow Americans.

  5. Numenaster, whose eyes are up here says

    My nephew in Seattle managed to get his 2nd through 4th years of in-state tuition at the University of Washington entirely covered, but mainly by taking on a whole bunch of work-study arrangements and really beating the bushes for obscure sources of financial aid. He did the FAFSA far in advance of his 1st year and got as much aid as he could that way, but there are a lot of smaller grants that you can’t really find out about until you’re at the institution. I’m glad he pulled it off, because my 1/3 contribution to his 1st year was something like $11K.

    His sister is now plotting her entrance into higher education, and is planning to do the same thing in a completely different field. Her first year will cost anywhere from $8K-44K USD, depending on where she decides to go. The bushes may have to get beaten more enthusiastically to turn up enough to cover her 2nd year if she sticks with the pricier options.

  6. publicola says

    There is a movement within the business world that is starting to recognize the value of a 2 yr. degree. Some companies are now dropping requirements for a Bachelor’s as a pre-req for hiring. ( I heard this on NPR on Thurs.). And if you’ve had to pay a plumber or electrician lately, you’ll know there’s money to be made with a Trade Cert. in your pocket.

  7. garnetstar says

    Very true, the students who receive athletic “scholarships” are very exploited. I taught general chemistry for some years to a cast of thousands–500 – 600 students every semester–and *all* the student athletes were just too busy to do the class work. Even if they came to class, they just did not have the time to do the out-of-class learning.

    And, every year I’ve been a reviewer for scholarship applications for the college, so I saw every scholarship offered and how much it was to the ten or fifteen students/year who were awardeed them. As @2 says, t’s a rare scholarship that’s over $1000, at a school in which tuition (just tuition) is well over $25,000/year.

    More and more of the students just can’t afford the university, so they do the first two years at a community college anyway (in which they have smaller classes and more individual attention!), then transfer here if they want a four-year degree. So, the problem with those two years being free is…….???

    • says

      If a person completes two years and gets good grades, what would that tell a lender? That they’re a good risk for student loans to complete the degree. Much like someone with a safe driving history getting a lower insurance rate, a student who can show they’re serious might get a lower interest rate.

      That’s not a perfect way of doing things, since those who come from lower income families often have to work on the side, have less access to resources. But if instead of moving out at 18 a person stays home until 20, it makes the cost of living cheaper, which would help those with lower incomes.