Recall that the tax reform enacted last December expanded the usability of 529 Plans to include expenses for K-12 education. Now some are worried that this will harm State tax collections. It’s a bogus beef on a number of fronts.
In December, as part of a broad tax overhaul, Congress expanded the accounts to cover up to $10,000 a year in expenses for kindergarten through 12th grade.
State budget officials are now concerned that a large number of parents will use 529 accounts to pay private-school tuition, giving them a new write-off for their state taxes.
As part of the (actually quite minor) snafu wherein the House and Senate passed trivially different versions of the tax reform bill, the Senate’s Parliamentarian ruled that 529 Savings Plans—modified by the tax bill to be usable for K-12 as well as secondary education expenses—cannot be used, on a straight majority vote, for K-12 homeschooling, even though formally schooled K-12 children and their parents can use the Plans. Two icons of Progressive Democracy, Senators Bernie Sanders (I, VT) and Ron Wyden (D, OR), had objected and raised the matter to the Parliamentarian.
Antonia Okofor is an advocate for empowering women, and she argues that the 2nd Amendment is a valuable tool in the empowerment.
She was scheduled to speak at two Liberal (note: not Liberal Arts—they’ve long ago lost that breadth) colleges, Hampshire College and Mount Holyoke.
Hampshire College canceled Okofor’s engagement on short notice—two hours’ notice—claiming that her speech was “too controversial.” Then the place thought better of its excuse and claimed the trivial technicality of a student application not being complete as the premise for canceling. This is nonsense: if that had been the reason, school management would have said so in the first place. On the other hand, the lack of dotted i’s and crossed t’s would have been just as indefensible as an excuse. This is fear, instead, fear of a better argument.
The Wall Street Journal has a summary of the House’s The Promoting Real Opportunity, Success and Prosperity Through Education Reform (PROSPER) Act, to be proposed this week. It’s aimed at
filling that gap [in college graduates’ skills, with 6 million jobs left begging] by both deregulating parts of the sector and laying the conditions for shorter, faster pathways to the workforce. The act focuses on ensuring students don’t just enroll in school, but actually graduate with skills that the labor market is seeking.
Recall that George Ciccariello-Maher, Associate Professor of Politics and Global Studies at Drexel University, routinely says it’s whiteness, white victimization, all things white that are at fault for mass shootings and violence generally. For instance, this in an interview with Democracy Now!
Whiteness is never seen as a cause, in and of itself, of these kinds of massacres despite the fact that whiteness is a structure of privilege and it’s a structure of power, and a structure that, when it feels threatened, you know, lashes out.
What makes white men so prone to this kind of behavior?
It seems a Cambridge University professor had the effrontery to warn new students of a class of his—Physical Sciences—that life is hard and that it’s harder when you’re stupid. For instance, this in an email that he sent to his incoming students:
Remember that you are NOT at any other uni, where students do drink a lot and do have what they regard as a ‘good time’—and you are NOT on a course, as some Cambridge courses sadly are, where such a behaviour pattern is possible or acceptable.
In an op-ed nominally centered on the failure of affirmative action in college admissions, John Katzman (o Noodle CEO and Princeton Review and 2U founder) and Steve Cohen (co-author of Getting In! The Zinch Guide to College Admissions & Financial Aid in the Digital Age) wrote this.
But the work of admissions officers is more complicated than finding the highest test scores. …. They want to put together an incoming freshman class that has aspiring journalists for the school newspaper, great athletes for all the teams, debaters, musicians, actors, dancers, legacies, and development prospects.
Kent Fuchs, University of Florida President, and Glenn Altschuler, Cornell Professor of American Studies, have some…interesting…thoughts on this in their recent Wall Street Journal op-ed.
Public universities that choose to grant access to speakers who are not invited or affiliated with the institution are legally obligated to accept all such speakers. As a result, they may become hostage to Nazis or other extremists—forced to stand by as these groups capitalize on their university’s visibility and prestige to amplify their vile messages.
Fuchs and Altschuler wrote that as if it were a bad thing. I have to ask: why are they so terrified of a contest of ideas in an open, public forum?
That’s the title of Douglas Belkin’s piece in Sunday’s Wall Street Journal. However, it’s inaccurate. What is feared by college/university management is the thugs who protest free speech with violence and others who protest free speech with noise and interruptions and venue entrance blockings that prevent the speaker from speaking.
Schools have struggled to come up with a consistent answer to requests to speak, pitting their free-speech ideals against security concerns.
Schools are being disingenuous when they pretend to these concerns, and the WSJ is misunderstanding the problem when it characterizes the schools as having free-speech ideals. The existence of the schools’ trading off security for free-speech demonstrates the lack of ideals regarding free-speech.