Posted: 03/25/15 21:30
by Dave Mindeman
John Kline is a busy guy. He is out there fighting for students. "Helping out" on student loans. Making things better for Native American education.
The increase in funding ($60 million) for Indian schools is interesting to note. It is certainly needed....
Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig School on the Leech Lake Band of the Ojibwe Reservation in northwestern Minnesota... is emblematic of problems in Indian schools across the nation. The school's list of grievances include a rodent infestation and a roof that caves during heavy snowfalls.
It is worth noting that the "Bug" school, as it has been nicknamed, has gotten a lot of publicity lately, and Rep. Betty McCollum has cited its problems in Congressional hearings.
I guess it's Kline to the rescue?
Funny, these problems in the Indian Schools are not a new phenomena....and Kline has certainly had many opportunities in the past to fix this problem. But is it possible that he is feeling a little bit more heat this time around....going into a Presidential election year and a growing list of challengers?
But another noteworthy Kline action caught my attention.
Kline, the student debt enigma....the For-Profit College protector.....the student loan rate raiser....has called out President Obama for talking about taxation on 529 plans.
The reason behind Kline's recent editorial spiel was President Obama's misguided idea to tax 529 college savings plans. Although the president swiftly abandoned the initiative, Kline, the self-proclaimed pork-cutting conservative, was inspired to pen the letter calling out his political foe.
For the record, 529 plans have become a dream for the 1% in that they are a means of tax exempting huge amounts of the earnings in these plans for the wealthy. A program which was meant to help the average person save ahead for college tuition and not have to pay tax on the earned money in the program if used for college..... has become another 1% tax shelter.
You can set up as many 529 plans as you wish and you can contribute the amount that is needed to cover cost of an education -- which could be Harvard? MIT? etc. The earnings in the plan are tax free if used for educational purposes - a broadly expanding definition is involved. And the beneficiary can be changed without affecting the plan. A plan that has ongoing earnings can offer tax free education for a wealthy family forever.
Meanwhile the rest of us struggle with massive student debt - which John Kline has contributed to by allowing For-Profit colleges to use deceptive recruiting practices and by setting Federal student loan rates via a marker that has increased the rate this year and looks like it will increase it again next year.
Yes, Kline is likely to market himself as a watchdog for college students. Sadly, Kline the watchdog is just looking out the money guys.