Wednesday, February 07, 2007



I was driving down the street the other day and the delightful Rachel Maddow was on the radio calling everyone's attention to some typical Bush Regime treachery. The newspapers had been blaring how Bush is raising the ceilings on what needy college students can get in terms of a Pell Grant. Sounds like good news, right? Consider the source. What has Bush ever done to help anyone needy, except needy millionaires trying to be billionaires? His plan is just more of the chicanery we've come to expect from this crew of thieves and robbers.

The Regime "responding to years of stagnant support for grants to lower-income college students with a major increase in Pell Grants, which go to the neediest students. Under the proposed budget, the maximum Pell Grant would jump from the current $4,050 to $4,600 in fiscal year 2008, climbing to $5,400 by 2012. The change follows criticism of the Republicans' decision to freeze Pell Grants for the past five years. Colleges and universities have long pushed for a boost in Pell Grants, but they are disappointed in the president's proposal. Educators note that, while the White House 2008 budget would raise Pell Grants, it would also eliminate $770 million for Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, which serve a similar need. Critics also note that the increase in Pell Grants is not so dramatic, once you consider that the new Democratic leadership in Congress has already agreed to raise these grants to $4,300.

Yes, it's a card trick. Bush's fake "increases," which followed last week's vote by the Congress to increase Pell Grants to $4,310 for 2007, will come at the cost of cuts to other financial aid programs. Bush makes it look like he's helping students with bigger Pell Grants while he guts the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant program (SEOG) and the Perkins Loan Fund. Hi proposed  "increases" come at a great cost to many low-income students (and to the lenders in the federal government's guaranteed-loan program whose stocks have tumbled dramatically in recent days, after years of nurturing by ex-Committee Chairman Buck McKeon driving Bush Regime higher ed policies). Now those companies, which fattened McKeon's and other Republicans' campaign coffers, will see their federal subsidies slashed dramatically by nearly $20 billion. Bush's budget proposal calls for the elimination of the $880-million Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants which is helping over a million students this year with $4,000 awards.


At 8:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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