Higher education has more than 1,000 lobbyists in Washington

To The Daily Sun,

For the past quarter century American taxpayers and tuition payers have watched education quality decrease and costs increase. Solutions from academics always have one general theme, higher taxes and more trillions to education. It takes no Einstein to see that approach has failed badly.

Living standards impacted by stagnant wages combined with higher education costs have squeezed millions from Main Street. The student debt tab is now a record $1.3 trillion while bankruptcies related to that debt are exploding nationally. All while education has opposed every reform suggested that aims to improve efficiency in education to deliver a better product at a lower cost. The Democrats' solution to this national scandal is to hide the disaster by making college free. What a slap across the face for the tens of millions of families that have sacrificed dearly for the last 100 years to put their kids through college.

I won't accept the Democrats' solution for failure, neither should anyone else. Free college converts moral hazard, into moral disaster for the nation, not just the recipients. If "free" absolves failure, then lets make everything in life free.

Higher education is as much a bully in Washington, D.C., as any major industry In America. Education is as politically connected as any business entity in Washington. We all know "politically connected" is code for corrupted influence selling. Few Americans are aware higher education has more pin-stripe, influence-peddling, highly paid, lobbyists in Washington than insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, energy companies, the hospital industry and the finance industry.

Higher education spends more money on lobbying to protect its self interest than almost any private enterprise business in America, including the most hated one, big oil. Higher education, has more than 1,000 lobbyists in Washington, paid hundreds of millions of dollars. Every dollar of which is paid for by ever higher tuition and more debt on your kids' shoulders. Last year government handed out more than $160 billion to higher education. The money has had one effect, higher tuition. Every dime of those federal billions has been spent to increase wages, grow administration and buy higher education greater political clout, rather than reduce tuition costs. Higher education always wants more train loads of tax payer and tuition money while promising nothing in return.

Let me relate this on going story. Even Barack Obama has his "hair on fire" with what he and and his Education Secretary Arne Duncan have seen with the failed results from higher education. Even tight-lipped Obama has spoken critically about a very Democratic voting bloc. It takes a lot for Obama to criticize people that keep Democrats in office, but he sees the harm and the swindle of it, as do many millions of others. Obama said "government is not getting good value for its education buck, it needs a much bigger bang." That puts it kindly.

He and Duncan put together legislation to make the assessment of college performance easier to understand for students and parents. They wanted booklets summarizing information on graduation rates, average length of time to graduate, job placement percentages and income statistics to aid in determining just how well colleges are doing their job. Obama even criticized college accrediting boards saying in essence they were asleep, not doing their jobs. College accrediting is a 100 percent con job on the public aimed first to keep colleges open, even the worst performing ones while keeping higher education employment at its maximum. The boards in truth are not some impartial judge protecting consumers from bad actors. Accrediting boards rarely close down poorly performing colleges to any degree that induces others to improve performance. This makes them a paper tiger and toothless overseer to protect consumers spending hundreds of billions and the government doing the same to get a quality education. What we get are colleges with single digit graduation rates that stay in business year in and year out and bankrupt students by the truck load.

Addressing the recent Obama threat, higher education went into high gear offense. Lobbyists immediately and over whelming mobilized opposition to this information request the same way America would if it were being invaded by Putin. All hands on deck, deploy millions, meet all politicians, threaten support and donations, cajole, scream, do what eve, but get this Obama legislation stopped at all costs. Higher education can not be made do be held accountable to anyone for its failure. Surely not government, surely not students, surely not parents and most of all not the public.

Idiots want to cover up all this self-interest, higher education corruption, and make it free. If we do, the $160 billion will go to $500 million while student debt still rises and quality lags. Education is never going to create a better product for less money when we keep sending them hundreds of billions and refuse to require them to perform for it. They will spend a trillion on lobbyists if that is what takes to stop from being held accountable.

Tony Boutin

  • Category: Letters
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I apologize for the hardship this tax rate in causing Gilmanton

To The Daily Sun,

Dear Gilmanton taxpayers:

In public input at the Gilmanton Board of Selectmen's Meeting on November 16, a few taxpayers voiced their unhappiness. There were questions and concerns but at no time did anyone ask for a board member to step down. Reference Tuesday's Laconia Daily Sun.
The 2015 tax rate is based on the operating budget, warrant articles voted in, revenue and the Board of Selectman applying funds from the non-designated fund balance.
Revenue is one part of the equation. It is my job to ask why it was not adjusted.
I have used all the resources available to better understand and help explain this tax rate.
Isn't the past town administrator a resource? Why do selectmen Hatch and Jean have an issue with using this resource? With the Academy flood, simple questions concerning billing for work and human resource questions have been answered by the past administrator.
The move by Selectmen Jean and Hatch, to remove me as chairman, was nothing more than censorship.
As your selectman, I will continue asking questions that need to be asked. As your selectman, knowing the hardship this tax rate has caused ... I apologize.

Don Guarino

Selectman, Town of Sanbornton

  • Category: Letters
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14 of the 15 top mouncher states are Republican-run states

To The Daily Sun,

I read with interest Marc Abear's letter on the economic freedom of states that rejected the expansion of Medicaid. I have always found the laboratories of the states to be of great interest. I wonder what economic freedom really means, though. What can the states actually teach us? Firstly, in a recent 2014 Wallet-Hub study, the top 14 of 15 "moocher" states turned out to be Republican-run states.

This is because the feds have to make up the revenue shortfalls in Republican-run states that keep wages low with right-to-work laws and have state income and corporate tax rates that are lower than the rest of the nation. With less revenue collected due to this alleged "economic freedom," Republican-controlled states receive inordinately more federal government provided revenue than states with higher tax rates.

These allegedly economically freer states receive a higher percentage of return for every dollar they paid in federal taxes. Moocher states are dependent on federal funding from other states that receive a lower percentage of return for their tax dollars to support their low taxes and "economic freedom." In other words, the economic freedom of many red states costs the rest of us who are more fiscally responsible with gathering revenues.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau's 2014 American Community Survey, the 10 poorest states are Mississippi, West Virginia, Arkansas, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, Louisiana, New Mexico, South Caroline, and Montana. All but one (Alaska) of the richest states were Democratic-controlled states. New Hampshire was seventh. Of the fourteen states with the highest unemployment rates, all but California and Oregon were Republican-run states.

The 10 least healthy states are Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Tennessee, West Virginia, Alabama, North Carolina, Indiana. The 10 healthiest states were mostly blue states, but Republican-controlled Utah (no surprise), Nebraska, and North Dakota made the list. Of the top six states on food stamps, all but Oregon are Republican-run states. In states that did not expand Medicaid, the obvious has happened. While the rate of uninsured people ages 19 to 64 living in poverty was 17 percent in Medicaid expanded states, the rate was 36 percent in states that didn't expand Medicaid as of June 2014. All but three of the least healthy states are states that did not expand Medicaid. West Virginia, Arkansas, and Kentucky want to get off that list. The 20 poorest states in income are all Republican-run states, and all but seven have refused to expand Medicaid. In matters of infant mortality rates, red states once again dominate. This is also true of gun murder, obesity, STDs, divorce, high school dropout, teen pregnancy, and church attendance rates.

Not expanding Medicaid also costs lives because expanded coverage reduces mortality rates. But as we all know, the "principles" of the Tea Party's version of capitalism are more important to TeaBilly than human lives. Except fetuses, that is.

James Veverka

  • Category: Letters
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I've lived through too many conflicts where thousands of lives were lost

To The Daily Sun,

How many more thousands have to die to satisfy the Republican armchair hawks' anger against President Obama? He is right in wanting to work with other countries in order to formulate a better and realistic solution. There has to be a better plan than unilateral, blind, all-out war. I've lived through too many conflicts where thousands of lives were lost and the outcome is more hatred, death and destruction. Yes, that refers to George W's needless invasion of Iraq, which led to thousands of Americans and Iraqis dead and wounded, turned Iraq into a failed state, blew up the Middle East, and laid the groundwork for ISIS.

It's already been 25 years since George H.W. Bush began the "Bush Family Excellent Adventure" in Iraq and Afghanistan that we are still paying the price for. There are Americans fighting and dying there who weren't even born when Bush senior started it all.

Then his son decided to invade Iraq, destroy those famous weapons of mass destruction which never existed. He bull-headedly ignored investigators from around the world who were telling him there weren't any. He also said he was going to bring democracy to that part of the world. We're still waiting for it, and that goal is further away because of his actions.

So why are we still repeating the same mistakes over and over? We hear talk of America's "credibility" and "need to lead." Sounds like the same things we were told about Vietnam. Some zombie ideas never die.

And many of my high school classmate's names are etched on the Vietnam Wall. Nixon was elected on the false premise and promise that he would get the United States troops out of the Vietnam War within a few months if he was elected to the presidency. Well, it lasted for many more years.

This begs the question: what did we get out of that one? We have thousands of children suffering from the devastating effects of Agent Orange. I worked as a parent/child advocate with parents of multiply handicapped children suffering from both physical and developmental disabilities in order to try and get them the educational and ancillary services needed to take care of these children long term. These children were born with the defective damaged genes that were passed on to them from their fathers who were exposed to Agent Orange.

Bernadette Loesch


  • Category: Letters
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These terrorists are animals, cowards who strap bombs to kids

To The Daily Sun,

Paris had its worst attack since WW2. Mali had an attack yesterday. Israel suffers from attacks all the time. Two Americans died, one in Paris and one in Israel, the other day.

It is certain that ISIS wants to ruin our way of life. ISIS wants to ruin our economy. These attacks were by animals. Animals that had easy entry into the countries. Animals because they strap bombs to women, children, and the mentally impaired.

It is only a matter of time it happens here. . . again. Have we forgotten 9/11 so soon? I can still see the people jumping out of the World Trade Center buildings because the heat from the fire was so intense. That image is burned into my memory.

Our president insists we let in refugees from the Middle East. All are Muslim. We are told that there should not be a litmus test of religion to let people into our country. Yet our president only wants Muslims and not Christians. Yet we are a country based on Judeo-Christian values.

People cut their vacations short after the attack in Paris. Tourism is being affected greatly. There is a video that threatens New York City. Can it happen again in NYC or any city in America? Yes it can.
New Hampshire is a tourist state. Most of the income in this state is from tourists. What happens if there is an attack in our state? Could there be? Most definetly, yes.
Twenty refugees from Syria are on the list to go to Manchester. New Hampshire is supposed to get 500 refugees. Who knows where they are from? Pew recently stated that 30 percent of the refugees that say they are from Syria, actually are not from Syria. Well, where exactly are they from and how can they be vetted if we are letting them in thinking they are from Syria?

Some say to let the women and children in but not the young males. Did I not hear when they raided the apartment in Paris, that a woman had a bomb strapped to herself that went off?

These terrorists are not human beings. They are animals. They strap the bombs to women and children. They are cowards.

Stop the refugees from coming in. They are not properly vetted. Vetting someone after they come into the country is absurd. There are no countries that can verify their information. Our own government has stated that it cannot be sure if one is not a terrorist being let in.

The only sane thing is to stop it all.

Can you imagine the fall out in state economy if there was an attack at a tourist spot in New Hampshire? I can. Our tourism industry would be shut down in a heartbeat. Our economy would be devastated.

The federal government will not tell the governors or the mayors who is coming and when. Don't we have a right to know who is coming into our cities and our state?

We must stop it now. Our representatives, federal, state and local must stand up to the president for the safety of New Hampshire citizens now, before it is too late.

Linda Riley

  • Category: Letters
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