Obama plan would help students

I knew that there was mischief in the air when Herald columnist and local economic God, James McCusker, said that the federal government should not be involved with higher education in this country. (Friday column, “Obama’s tuition fix would hurt public colleges.”)

Obama’s plan would have colleges report such interesting secrets as actual graduation rates, students’ earning potential and actual costs to the student for attending an institution. I am at a loss to figure out why Mr. McCusker would not want public colleges to provide students enough information to make an informed decision about finances, him being an economist and all.

If nothing else, Obama’s plan will force a national discussion about the education of our children. Even Mr. McCusker ought to be able to intuit a good outcome from an honest discussion about why my son’s generation will be the first in the history of this nation to be less educated than the one before.

I must say that Mr. McCusker’s florid language, vivid illustrations and impatient tone suggest that he is an unhappy camper. His desire to keep government out of the face of government institutions and improve a public good is totally misguided. In case he didn’t know it, the federal government has been involved in higher education for a long time. I dare you to suggest that government interventions, such as the G.I. Bill, have in some way diminished the quality of a college education.

William Mezger