Higher Math

Congress, as usual, is paralyzed. It can’t figure out how to extend the low-cost student loan program. Without Congressional action, the interest rate will double, from 3.4 percent to 6.8, on July 1. The cost of extending the program for a year is estimated to be $6 billion. With the economy still weak and with the states having already made massive cuts to higher education, with more pending, tuitions at state colleges and universities are soaring. Raising the student loan interest rate likely will put college out of reach for many. Republicans call the program irresponsible and seem willing to let it die, unless it is paid for with ¬†further cuts to the safety net. In an economy that increasingly favors the wealthy and disadvantages everyone else, college is fast becoming a luxury of the wealthy. I guess the rest of us will be sending our children to Hamburger U, where they can learn the valuable skill of asking the children of bankers if they want fries with their Happy Meal.

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