Friday, February 04, 2005

This Post Strikes a Chord

The Pirate is talking about California, but it applies nationwide:

I'm getting tired of all the ads for Cal-Grants on the radio. Not for the fact that we spend a metric butt-load of money on these 'entitlements' on punks who cut class and get drunk 5 to 7 days a week. Of course they go on and represent it as 'free money', which is flat out misleading advertising. The money isn't free, the State is going to tax the crap out of you and everyone else for the rest of their lives for it. It doesn't matter if you didn't even go to college, the janitor at the local school gets taxed to give some 18 year old 'free money'. Of course it doesn't matter much to the college kid if they are riding on the backs of someone who works hard just to get by, because its their calling to major in dance (which of course leads one to believe they won't make enough to be taxed to pay back the Cal-Grant ten-fold).

The whole reason to advertise Cal-Grants is to increase demand, so the people in Sac-toe who love the entitlements can bitch and moan about how we are short changing the future. With that out goes the call to increase taxes to support the entitlement demand. Its dirty pool, its and end around to raise taxes to benifit the few. Now I think places Community Colleges and schools with practical are a wonderful thing, it gives people very affordable job skills that can help them succed or improve their lives.

The other thing about this massive aid to colleges problem is it allows the schools to be financially irresponsible. There is no reason why tution increases should continously outpace inflation, with only the lame excuse of 'teacher's salaries,' ignoring the expensive ammentities, more admins that you know what to do with, leftist protests and multicultural events. The Cal-Grant isolates the school from being accoutnable to the tutition payers for outrageous tuition and tuition hikes, because you can just make everyone share the burden.

In the interests of open disclosure, I was one who fell through the "financial aid" cracks when my Dad threw a hissy fit and wouldn't fill out forms. The system told me to get lost because, though I was a poor college student making $6.30 plus tips at Starbucks, living with 4 other guys and eating beans and rice to get by (although, I must confess to still somehow finding the cash for beer), I was too young to be considered independent. At the same time my Dad had no obligation to support me. Yet now I must fund four years of Art Appreciation at some leftist institution which preaches statism with my confiscated dollars while simultaneously repaying hefty loans for an education which is cost inflated by the nearly infinite supply of aid dollars for colleges to draw from for those whose situation happens to coincide with the social engineering of the powers that be.

It's experiences like this that have formed my libertarian views. A statist will trust the state to make these decisions, and is confident THEY will never be the one to fall into the cracks in the system. I, on the other hand, assume that every program will result in me paying out and someone else, often someone for whom working the system is more important than being productive, will be collecting. Nothing in my experience serves to undermine this principle. Because I can have no faith in the government's programs to provide for me, I therefore plan to provide for myself in any case. Thus, any government entitlement program simply detracts from my ability to provide for myself, and puts me at a disadvantage to those who are well connected or work the system.


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