Saturday, November 29, 2008

You know you're in Orange County when...

Pow! Bam! Nothing says “Merry Christmas” like a new gun!:
Business is booming at gun shops around Orange County.

“The first two weeks of November have been extraordinary,” says Randy Garell of The Grant Boys in Costa Mesa. “Sales are running about 60 percent over last November.”

“The reason I keep hearing is that people are concerned that their rights will be taken away,” says Tony Alvarez, gun department manager of the Army-Navy Store in Orange.


“We’re selling everything we can get our hands on,” says the Grant Boys’ Garell. “The other day, a husband and wife came in to buy Christmas presents. He bought a gun for her and she bought one for him.”

There’s another fear at play, too: Fear that if recession turns to depression, civil unrest may follow…. (OC Register, yesterday.)

Rancho Rinconada de Los Gatos

Tiger Ann, pining after her mom, who returns in the morning.

Prowling this morning.

IVC's recent veterans' ceremony

Ditto.

PAC at left, Beefsteak at right, Vet's tents in middle.

My bro and Catherine.

Natalie.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Dorm room waftage

BEYOND SAD. OK, Irvine is a safe city—compared to other U.S. cities. So says the FBI, anyway.
Irvine is the safest city in America when measuring violent crime in cities with populations of more than 100,000, according to FBI statistics....

Irvine in 2006 had four homicides, 17 rapes, 50 robberies and 55 aggravated assaults, [an Irvine police officer] said. In 2005, there were two reported homicides, 17 rapes, 42 robberies and 90 aggravated assaults....
(FBI Says Irvine Is America's Safest City)
(The murder rate in the U.S. is 4.28 persons per 100,000. In Europe, it is much lower. For instance, in Spain, the rate is about one fourth what it is in the U.S. (See.) You'll recall that, a few years ago, trustee Tom Fuentes objected to a Saddleback College "study abroad" program to Spain in part owing to concerns about student safety.)

Linda Park was a freshman at Irvine Valley College in 1995 when she was brutally murdered by two young men in search of loot in her parents' home. (The men were recently convicted of murder and sentenced.)

Today’s OC Register (Justice served for murdered Irvine girl, but memories linger) offers a sad follow-up.

THESE COLLEGE KIDS TODAY. It’s awfully expensive attending college these days. At private colleges, tuition can be ridiculous.

Today’s Reg has a story (Tuition-money pot sales land Chapman student in jail) about one enterprising—er, desperate—young man who coughed up his college coin by selling cannabis:
…According to court testimony, William Paul Laaser, 20, told Orange police officers that he was selling marijuana to "raise money for tuition." The university's tuition for the 2008-09 academic year is about $47,000.

Laaser was arrested Oct. 27 when university public safety officers responded to a complaint of an odor of marijuana coming from Laaser's dorm room.

Sgt. Dan Adams of the Orange Police Department, said about 40 grams of marijuana, a scale, a ledger detailing purchases, numerous plastic baggies and $800 in a locked trunk were found in Laaser's room.

Laaser pleaded guilty Nov. 11 and began serving his jail term Monday. Laaser's driver's license will be revoked for a year, he will have to perform 45 days of community service for Caltrans or do other physical labor and will be on probation for three years, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office.
Well, at least the kid has been mastering some practical skills.

CON-FUSION. Today, physicist Bob Park notes that
It's been almost 20 years since the March 23, 1989 announcement that cold fusion had been discovered by two chemists at the University of Utah [Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons]. By June, cold fusion was an object of ridicule.

A small band of embattled defenders retreated to holding annual conferences of like-minded scientists to which skeptics were not welcome.

The story now seems to be entering a new chapter. Believers have begun showing a willingness to confront skeptics, submitting papers to open meetings of major scientific societies. They no longer use the term "cold fusion," preferring the less contentious "low-energy nuclear reactions" (LENR) to describe their field….

However, the use of LENR has been undone by referring to "excess heat" as the Fleischmann-Pons effect. This only serves as a reminder of the outrageous conduct of the university administration and the incredibly sloppy research on which the claim was based.

This year, there is great excitement over the work of
Yoshiaki Arata, a respected professor at Osaka University. In May Arata demonstrated the production of excess heat to an audience of 80, but there have been many such claims over the years and until it is replicated by someone outside the LENR community and a plausible explanation is advanced, it will change few minds.

The Tiger Ann diaries



Thursday, November 27, 2008

No news is bad news

We try to keep on top of things here at Dissent the Blog, but sometimes it ain’t easy, cuz, sometimes, there’s not much to keep on top of.

BOARD FRUSTRATION. Near as I can tell, the SOCCCD board of trustees is very frustrated with faculty right now. Evidently, the problem concerns faculty union and Saddleback College Senate leadership. Don’t know much about the union situation, although it’s a sure a bet that it concerns contract negotiations and union Prez Lee Haggerty.

I’m told that the senate is viewed by trustees as pressing for an excessive amount of reassigned time.

Chancellor Raghu P. Mathur to the rescue, I guess. “Please Raghu! Even though you are both a creep and a boob, we rely on you to protect us from faculty!”

As you know, it is at the December meeting (this year, on the 5th) that the board elects its officers for the coming year. Right now, Don Wagner is president of the board, and it seems likely that he will continue for another year.

But know this: Tom Fuentes and Bill Jay are the only trustees who have never served as board president. I doubt that Bill wants the job. If Tom wants it, he’s got the votes.

Yikes!

STUDENT NEWSPAPERS. Once in a while, I check out the local college student newspapers, most of which are lame. The Saddleback College/IVC Lariat, however, is among the better papers. It’s online site is usually pretty lively.

Not right now, though.

On Tuesday, the Lariat posted about “Juicy Campus”: Juicy Campus takes online gossip to the dark side. JC is a predictably offensive student gossip forum that has grown in popularity around the country, although, evidently, it’s not yet grown grape vines through our particular colleges (and parks).

Last Wednesday, OCC’s Coast Report reported on the effects of that school’s budget crisis—“including a seriously scaled back winter intersession, a cut of more than 100 classes in the spring and the possible evisceration of its summer session….” But that’s old news.

Yesterday, the CR’s hot news was the “subsiding” of a rash of vehicle break-ins.

The seldom stinging Fullerton College Hornet reports that there are new cabinets in the Fullerton College faculty lounge. Yup.

On the other hand, it also includes a conversation with NOCCCD Chancellor Ned Doffoney, who, as you’ll recall, was the President of Saddleback College in the mid-90s. (Sitting Down with the Chancellor.) The article traces Doffoney’s career, starting in the Louisiana swamps.

Curiously, his years in the swamps of Saddleback College are left unchronicled! We are told about his move to a Los Angeles trade school in 1982—and then, suddenly, he is sipping coffee with a friend in 1998, and he hears about an opportunity to leave his “gated community” in South OC in favor of them bayous back home. Saddleback College isn’t even mentioned.

(Below, I've attached an old article describing a typically swampy event during Doffoney's last year as SC President.)

CSU Fullerton’s Daily Titan seems to be experiencing a particularly disastrous lull. At it’s website, I clicked on "news" and found a week-old story about a lecture on cyber-bullying (Panel says cyber-bullying is a crime).

The UCI New University’s top story is about a presentation about immigration last week by professor Bean (Langson [Library] Host to Immigration History).

I guess things get a little slow around Thanksgiving.

Hope you have a good one.

June 5, 1997
Saddleback College cans newspaper adviser
Student paper has been critical of district board
Kathleen Dorantes received word May 20, without warning that she would no longer be the adviser to the Saddleback Valley [sic] College newspaper, The Lariat.

She was told the decision came from the office of the college president, Ned Doffoney, and Doffoney had given no reason, Dorantes said last week from her home in Riverside.

Some sources at the Mission Viejo college...say the move was politically motivated. The student paper has been critical of the majority of the college district's board of trustees since the election in the fall.

The faculty member appointed to take Dorantes' place as adviser, Lee Walker, is an outspoken supporter of the board majority.
...
During one of the years she was the adviser, 1996, the paper won one of the top awards in the state for community college newspapers, the General Excellence Award from the California Journalism Association of Community Colleges.
...
Doffoney said in a telephone interview that the decision had been a "contractual" one. He said that any full-time faculty member can bump any part-time faculty member at any time. Doffoney said that Walker had approached him and indicated that he wanted to advise the newspaper.

Walker could not be reached for comment.
...
When asked about reasons for the change or reasons that the college president, rather than an immediate supervisor, would make a decision about a faculty teaching assignment, Doffoney said, "I think this conversation has gone about as far as it can," and indicated he did not want to comment further.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Rebel Girl's Poetry Corner:"my shining loaf of quietness"

It's Thanksgiving. Rebel Girl's son has donned his "Indian vest" made of brown paper grocery bags (his read "Lucky" on the inside) and his headress of bright construction paper feathers and paraded with his peers in front of parents to sing a song about an unhappy turkey.

Rebel Girl and family will have three Thanksgivings: one on the day in West Covina (lots of Alvarezes); one on the next day (just her and her fellas); and then another on the weekend when Special Needs Mama and her family visit for an overnight in the yurt. They plan to eat, to hike, to make music perhaps.

So - she's been baking. This year's theme is bread. She likes the faithfulness of the yeast and how the house smells like real people live it in. She likes to think that her son will remember this smell and her, that she's making a memory, a good one.

Today's poem is one she's shared before, written by Peter Everwine:
Night

In the lamplight falling
on the white tablecloth
my plate,
my shining loaf of quietness.

I sit down.
Through the open door
all the absent who I love enter
and we eat.
~~~~~~~
Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Ashamed beyond words

SALARIES. All of a sudden, everybody’s talking about how much academics, especially academic administrators, get paid. On Saturday, the OC Reg (UC salaries: How much university employees earn) declared that
There were more than 250,000 people employed by the University of California system in 2007. Of those, 3,018 earned a gross pay of $200,000 or more.
Wow, I guess. Meanwhile, we’ve been hearing a lot lately about college and university presidents refusing raises, what with the hard economic times and all. On Saturday, the New York Times joined in the fun (Presidents of Colleges Give Back Some Pay). Big bucks, baby.

Garsh, I wonder if the world knows that the Chancellor of the SOCCCD, the worthless and execrable Raghu P. Mathur, makes about $300,000?

Do you suppose he plans to give some of it back?

That seems unlikely. It turns out that UCI’s Chancellor, Michael Drake, makes $387,000 (plus the use of a fancy schmancy house at the university). Raghu occasionally hobnobs with the Drakester.

My guess is that Tom Fuentes will arrange for another raise for Mr. Goo.

DOUBLE DIPPING AGAIN. Inside Higher Ed reports this morning that
The University of California plans to review the pay arrangements of hundreds of double dippers — retirees who are collecting their pensions while also having been rehired into jobs, in some cases at salaries that are higher than they received before retiring, The San Francisco Chronicle reported. The paper reviewed a university database and reported that it found “widespread violations” of guidelines that limit retired workers to no more than one year of post-retirement employment and generally only for part-time work. At least 440 people were identified as violating the one-year limit and 181 were found to be working full time.
BOB JONES SAYS SORRY. IHR also reports that “Bob Jones University has issued a formal apology for its past racist policies, such as refusing to admit black students until 1971 and banning interracial dating until 2000.” Oh good. Back in 2000, Bush spoke there.

YOUNG REPUBLICANS. Then there’s this:
John Fike has resigned as faculty adviser to the Young Conservatives chapter at Texas A&M University at College Station after student members put up posters attacking four professors at the university who had signed a petition defending William Ayers, the one-time Weather Underground leader who is now an education professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, The Bryan/College Station Eagle reported. Fike said he was “ashamed beyond words” at the attack on colleagues. The posters suggest that the A&M professors who signed the petition back his Weather Underground views. The petition actually defends his work as an education professor and criticizes the way Republicans attacked him during the presidential campaign. Student leaders of the Young Conservatives responded to Fike’s resignations by questioning whether he really is conservative, and one alleged that he had an Obama sign outside his house.
Did you know that Raghu used to advise the Young Republicans here at IVC? Yeah. Plus he's the president of the Indo-American Republican Club of California.

I bet it has no members, though.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

"My quest for success" is why

About 45 minutes into Monday night’s board meeting, two student government leaders—Kalin and Travis—presented Saddleback College’s Associated Student Government (SCASG’s) proposed budget for 2008-9. It's about a million bucks. (To see the presentation, go here.)

As they waited to speak, Kalin and Travis looked pretty damned cute. Absurdly so. And they came with a crew of enthusiastic supporters, all of them wearing red shirts. No apathy there!

Alas, as you know, several trustees were unhappy with ASG's proposed budget. To the trustees, the budget did not seem to give much of value back to students. The board wanted to see a super-sized value meal, and all they were getting was a mush-ball of stale french fries.

As board president Don "Blunt Boy" Wagner put it, “[Your budget] gives some money to forensics, and it gives some money to the surfing team meals, and it gives some money to the ‘ride the wave’ early bird orientation…—[but, dagnabit] that’s not where the rubber meets the road for students!”

The kids in the room were plainly horrified. They gaped. They were instructed to go back to the drawing board. They marched out of the building in single file, like Republicans, little red states.


But even apart from the "mush-ball" problem, I’ve gotta say that, for me, the students’ presentation was weird. So odd were Kalin and Travis’ bearing and their odd celebrity among their twenty or so red-shirted supporters, that, for once, the adults in the room were transfixed.

And amused? And charmed? And horrified? All of the above, I think.

Speaking for myself, there was something positively creepy going on. It had something to do with these self-important leaders’ relationships to their student supporters. Well, judge for yourself. (You really should see it.)
ASG President Kalin K: …I am so pleased to be with you this evening to present our budget …I came to Saddleback College expecting to make the most of my experience by getting involved…I feel very well grounded in the fact that I will be a leader, prepared to serve my fellow citizens no matter what career path I choose. My Saddleback College experience solidified this foundation and gives me the confidence to pursue my life goals. As members of ASG, we devote our time to serving our fellow students. I therefore benefit from this program in a variety of ways as both a student and as a student leader ... I know that the single greatest motivation for all of us has always been serving our peers by supporting student success… Thank you for you time and your consideration. [Student applause.]

ASG Treasurer Travis F: ...I first want to thank my contingent of supporters here… [They applaud.] It is truly you guys who make ASG tick, and without your participation and efforts, we wouldn’t be anywhere… That being said, my name is Travis... …First, I really want to emphasize that we do administer a very substantial budget…at times this can be an incredibly difficult and daunting process—yet, for all its difficulties, it is still immensely rewarding. I know that, as I pursue my career and my goals that I will be able to draw upon this experience and really use it in my quest for success.

The overarching goal of student government is student development. … We feel that it is our responsibility to really encourage our students’ intellectual ambitions and I think this budget reflects that. …We funded $965,000 of requests….

…[Sighs heavily.] And lastly I would just like to emphasize the amount of time and effort that went into formulation of this budget. Every decision was hashed out in great detail and great collaboration, and throughout this process we knew acutely what was at stake and that is the welfare of the students at Saddleback College, and as leaders, it is our responsibility to treat any matter and every matter with integrity, accountability, and transparency, and this budgetary process was no different. …At the beginning of the year, …President Todd Burnett came to one of our senate meetings and spoke about how we might go about leaving a legacy here at Saddleback College and we discussed this a few times in the past month and for me personally I don’t think that our legacy will be left[?] by how many students—or the growth and development of leaders within student government. That is important, but it is secondary. It is not about us, and it never has been [Um, who thought it was?]; rather, our legacy will be left by how efficiently we allow our students to succeed here at Saddleback College and pursue their ambitions and achieve what they need to achieve in order to have a successful life, and if we can have even one student find his or her true calling, or overcome some obstacle that has previously prevented their success, then I think that we have already left an impressive legacy and one we can all take a tremendous amount of pride in…. [Students applaud enthusiastically.]
I don't want to be too hard on these kids. I mean, it's only student government. And like Travis says, if only one kid--just one--gets a little encouragement, isn't spending that million bucks well worth it?

REESE WITHERSPOON EXPLAINS:


Tammy Metzler's speech:

A lovely morning in the canyon, with sis and brat and fog

As usual, Tiger Ann seeks to control the situation.

Annie calls Tiger Ann her "daughter." I have my doubts.


Looking down Live Oak Canyon, toward Trabuco Canyon.

Some kinda flower or something, I dunno. Anything that pokes, I call it "cactus."

Tiger Ann looking spooky. Cats do that. Right now, she's tear-assing around my house as I listen to Acker Bilk's "Stranger On the Shore." Perfect!

A bougainvillea, I suppose. Another cactus.

Tiger Ann tolerates my antics. She does, however, keep me at arm's length.

I loved these songs during the ante-Liverpudlian era (i.e., pre-Beatles):

"Stranger On the Shore," Mr. Acker Bilk (1962):


"Midnight in Moscow," Kenny Ball and His Jazzmen (1962):


and my personal fave (from this era and ilk):

"Washington Square," The Village Stompers (1963):


This is what Annie and I looked like, back then, more or less:

Not so fast! Rethinking fall opening

Today's report  — up again USC reverses robust fall reopening plans, asks students to stay home for online classes LA Times  ...

Invited to IVC—this time a notorious admitted HOMOPHOBE

—Conservative radio host, Michael Reagan


Here at IVC, natch, we have an Accounting Department. It happens to support something called the Guaranteed Accounting Program: GAP4+1.

According to the department website,

This unique pathway program — a partnership between Irvine Valley College (IVC) and Cal State Fullerton (CSUF) — will enable you to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in four years and a master’s degree with one more additional year (thus GAP4+1).

Among the Master's degrees available through the program, we're told, are "Accountancy and Finance; Taxation; or Accountancy."


We're also told that "The number of students accepted into this program in any one year is limited so be sure to apply early."


Great. The early bird gets the worm.


Evidently, the good people of the GAP4+1 program have recently seen fit to invite someone to speak at Irvine Valley College (in late April): Michael Reagan.




The Republican Party of OC just loves IVC (from their website)

That's right. They've invited Reagan family embarrassment Michael, a man of, let's face it, little or no distinction.


He was expelled from his High School and he washed-out of college. Eventually, he went into clothing sales.


In those early years, he made some curious friends:

In 1965, the FBI warned Ronald Reagan that in the course of an organized crime investigation it had discovered his son Michael was associating with the son of crime boss Joseph Bonanno, which would have become a campaign issue had it been publicly known. Reagan thanked the FBI and said he would phone his son to discreetly discontinue the association. (From Wikipedia's Michael Reagan.)

[“F.B.I. agents in Phoenix made an unexpected discovery: According to records, ‘the son of Ronald Reagan was associating with the son of Joe Bonnano [sic].’ That is, Michael Reagan, the adopted son of Reagan and Ms. Wyman, was consorting with Bonanno’s son, Joseph Jr. The teenagers had bonded over their shared love of fast cars and acting tough.” ... "Joseph Jr. was not involved in organized crime, but he was spending time at his father’s home... [I]n October 1964, he had been arrested in connection with the beating of a Scottsdale, Ariz., coffee shop manager. ... Following routine procedure, F.B.I. agents in Phoenix asked agents in Los Angeles to interview Ronald Reagan for any information he might have gleaned from his son. The investigation, after all, was a top priority. But Hoover blocked them from questioning Reagan, thus sparing him potentially unfavorable publicity. Declaring it 'unlikely that Ronald Reagan would have any information of significance,' Hoover instead ordered agents to warn him about his son’s worrisome friendship." - New York Times]

Later, there were legal problems:

In 1981 Reagan was accused, but later cleared of felony violations of California securities laws in court documents. The Los Angeles County District Attorney alleged that Reagan had baited investors into unlawful stock arrangements, and selling stocks despite the fact that he was not legally permitted to do so. The D.A.'s office investigated allegations that Reagan improperly spent money invested by others in a company, Agricultural Energy Resources, he operated out of his house in a venture to develop the potential of gasohol, a combination of alcohol and gasoline. Investigators said they were also checking whether he had spent up to $17,500 of investors' money for his living expenses. The district attorney's office cleared Reagan of both charges later that year. [“The investigators said they became interested in Michael Reagan after being informed that he had steered customers to Mr. Carey {Richard Francis Carey, who "was selling worthless stock,"} had accepted a $4,000 check from one investor, and that, in at least one meeting of potential investors, his relationship to Ronald Reagan had apparently been exploited as a promotional tool for the stock.” - New York Times]
On September 20, 2012, Reagan and two associates were sued by Elias Chavando, a fellow partner, for allegedly withholding Chavando's interest in an e-mail business built around the Reagan.com domain name. In 2015, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury found Reagan liable for conversion and breach of fiduciary duty. Reagan and his business partners were ordered to pay $662,500 in damages.
(From Wikipedia's Michael Reagan.)

Michael tended to smash things (cars, etc.) in his youth. Well into his 40s, he tells us, he was full of "rage" (owing, he explains, to having been molested) and he treated his family badly.


Then, natch, he found the Lord.


Plus, owing to his relationship to his pop, President Ronald Reagan, Michael grabbed the brass ring and became a talk-show host on one or two right-wing radio networks. Blah, blah, blah, he said.


In his latter-day career as mediocre right-wing bloviater and Pious Christian, Michael Reagan has said some unfortunate things:

In April 2013, in a syndicated column, Reagan accused American churches of not fighting hard enough to block same-sex marriage. He wrote that, in regards to arguments supporting gay marriage, similar arguments could be used to support polygamy, bestiality, and murder.

. . . In June 2008, conspiracy theorist Mark Dice launched a campaign urging people to send letters and DVDs to troops stationed in Iraq which support the theory that the September 11 attacks were an "inside job". "Operation Inform the Soldiers", as Dice has called it, prompted Reagan to comment that Dice should be executed for treason. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, a liberal/progressive media criticism organization, asked Radio America at the time to explain whether it permits "its hosts to call for murder on the air".

. . . He spoke out in support of profiling in October 2014. In a piece called Profile or Die, he wrote that it would be left to citizens to defend themselves if there were an attack against them by terrorists such as the Islamic State. (Wikipedia)

Golly. It's pretty clear that Michael Reagan is just another "former total fuck-up, now reborn and pious."


Intellectually, he's a low-rent Limbaugh, and that's pretty low.


I mean, when he gets here, just what is he gonna say? That liberals are evil? That his dad was a saint? That freedom and democracy are good? That you oughta put your life in the hands of the Lord? That you don't need to go to college? That homosexuality is a sin?


Only in Bizarro World would Michael Reagan be judged a good speaker to invite to a college.


* * *

Meanwhile, IVC's Guaranteed Accounting Program folks have only wonderful things to say about the fellow:


Michael Reagan

The eldest son of former President Ronald Reagan and one of the most dynamic and sought-after public speakers, Michael Reagan’s commitments to public service and the conservative vision his father championed are second to none, making him the natural heir to the Reagan conservative legacy. Michael serves as chairman and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation, which seeks to advance the causes President Reagan held dear and to memorialize the accomplishments of his presidency. Michael’s career includes hosting a national conservative radio talk show syndicated by Premiere Radio Networks, championing his father’s values and principles in the public policy forum, commentating and appearing on the Today Show, Good Morning America, Good Day LA, CNN, and Fox News, and contributing to Newsmax Television. Also an accomplished author, Michael has many successful books including On the Outside Looking In, Twice Adopted, and his latest book, Lessons My Father Taught Me.

Well, sure. But he's also the worst kind of insubstantial, opportunistic "celebrity." And he's not an intellectual; he's a propagandist. He's a minor player in our sad era of noisy and loutish conservative anti-intellectualism and demagoguery.


—And he's a homophobe, among other things. Or so he says.


WAY TO GO, GLENN


IVC Prez Roquemore shares Reagan's enthusiasm for the Pussy-grabber-in-chief.

Recent columns by Michael Reagan


ALL IS FAIR IN THE WAR ON TRUMP (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, December 13, 2018

…Hillary continues to skate free, unbothered by the FBI or any federal agency for the dirty things she and the Obama administration’s injustice department did during the 2016 election to try to defeat Donald Trump.

But not General Flynn.

His life was ruined by the FBI bosses who set out to nail him – and did….

TRUMP VS THE CRAZIES (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, January 11, 2019

…Some of the country’s most desperate liberals in the media actually argued that the president’s televised pitch to the country for congressional funding for a stronger border fence should not be carried live by the networks.

Why? Because they said the president lies too much and they wanted to be able to fact-check his speech beforehand….

TRUMP SAYS ‘ADIOS’ TO BIRTHRIGHT CITIZENSHIP (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, November 1, 2018

…Ending birthright citizenship, better known as dropping the anchor baby, is the most significant illegal immigration reform the President Trump has announced. With a single executive order, he unplugs a beacon that attracts scammers from the world over. He also attacks a visible manifestation of the “foreigners first” mindset that has infected the State Department, and the rest of the federal bureaucracy, since the 1960s….

THE PARTY OF EVIL (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, October 11, 2018

…Now, thanks to the Democrats’ ugly smear campaign against Judge Kavanaugh, Republican senators like Susan Collins and Trump spokeswoman Sarah Sanders need security guards 24/7.

It’s not the new Supreme Court Justice who’s evil.

It’s the Democrat Party and the nasty “progressives” who’ve taken it over and are willing to say or do anything or destroy anyone to bring down President Trump.

Maybe this is not something new. Maybe the Democrats have always been this evil….

About Michael Reagan:


A separate peace* (LA Times, August 31, 2004) – by Anne-Marie O'Connor

For years, Michael Reagan, the older son of Ronald Reagan, felt unloved and unwanted. His parents divorced when he was 3. Two years later he was packed off to a boarding school where, he says, he was so lonely he cried himself to sleep. Sexually abused at age 7, he felt shame and self-loathing, compounded by Bible passages that convinced him he would never go to heaven.

He grew up so angry he smashed a childhood bicycle and later took a sledgehammer to his new car. Well into his 40s, his "rage came to a full boil," and he often yelled at his wife and young son.

Then, he says, he found salvation through the love of his family and his "adoption" by God. He embraced conservative values and became a syndicated talk-radio host who today tells listeners: "I am homophobic."….

Roquemore and U of Phoenix

From Clueless IVC Prez Glenn Roquemore smiles as he makes nice with the enemy DtB, 8-26-14

Vice President, Western Region, Workforce Solutions/University of Phoenix, Chuck Parker, President, Irvine Valley College, Dr. Glenn R. Roquemore

Members of the Irvine Valley College community just received this gushing email from the President:

Irvine Valley College Signs Memorandum of Understanding with University of Phoenix

Irvine – Irvine Valley College (IVC) administration, faculty and staff held a formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Phoenix, Inc. (University) on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.

Irvine Valley College President Glenn Roquemore said, “This partnership will expand the many transfer opportunities available to the IVC students and staff. One of the major benefits of the MOU is the tuition discount."

Irvine Valley College students transferring to University of Phoenix into an undergraduate baccalaureate degree program … will be considered as having satisfied the general education requirements for the breadth of the liberal arts degree program….

IVC students get 10% off Phoenix tuition, which is way pricey.

Evidently, President Roquemore is not aware that entities such as the U of Phoenix exist to make huge profits by taking advantage of students who typically receive federally insured loans, putting them in serious debt. Those students, upon graduating, typically fail to find the work they were expecting and often default on their loans, forcing the taxpayer to pay. (It's a massive bubble that, one day, will pop.)

You’re fine with all that, are you Glenn? You're a Republican, aren't you? Yeah. I see you smiling with those vets you claim to love!

Alas, the "predatory for-profits" problem is especially egregious in the case of Vets, who pay their way via the new GI Bill:


GI Bill funds failing for-profit California colleges

(Desert Sun)

The ever-clueless Glenn R

Over the last five years, more than $600 million in college assistance for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans has been spent on California schools so substandard that they have failed to qualify for state financial aid.

As a result, the GI Bill — designed to help veterans live the American dream — is supporting for-profit companies that spend lavishly on marketing but can leave veterans with worthless degrees and few job prospects, The Center for Investigative Reporting found.

. . .

Financial records analyzed by CIR show that California is the national epicenter of this problem, with nearly 2 out of every 3 GI Bill dollars going to for-profit colleges.

The University of Phoenix in San Diego outdistances its peers. Since 2009, the campus has received $95 million in GI Bill funds. That's more than any brick-and-mortar campus in America, more than the entire 10-campus University of California system and all UC extension programs combined.

. . .

The school's large share of GI Bill funding reflects more than just the number of veterans enrolling. The programs are expensive. An associate degree costs $395 a credit, for instance — nearly 10 times the cost at a public community college.

The University of Phoenix won't say how many of its veterans graduate or find jobs, but the overall graduation rate at its San Diego campus is less than 15 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Education, and more than a quarter of students default on their loans within three years of leaving school.

Those figures fall short of the minimum standards set by the California Student Aid Commission, which dispenses state financial aid. The commission considers either a graduation rate lower than 30 percent or a loan default rate of more than 15.5 percent clear indicators of a substandard education.

No such restrictions govern GI Bill funds. And nearly 300 California schools that received GI Bill money either were barred from receiving state financial aid at least once in the past four years or operated without accreditation, CIR has found.

. . .

Of the $1.5 billion in GI Bill funds spent on tuition and fees in California since 2009, CIR found that more than 40 percent — $638 million —went to schools that have failed the state financial aid standard at least once in the past four years.

Four of those schools were University of Phoenix campuses, which together took in $225 million….

An Enemy In Common? The Case Against For-Profit Colleges

(Cognoscenti [NPR Boston])

… As Americans, we should all be concerned that veterans are being taken advantage of by unscrupulous profiteers. As taxpayers, we should be aware that we are paying for this disservice. Approximately 85-95 percent of the for-profits’ revenue comes from taxpayer-supported benefits….

For-Profit College Investigation--Is the New GI Bill Working?: Questionable For-Profit Colleges Increasingly Dominate the Program

([Senator] Harkin newsletter)


…Senator Harkin's HELP Committee investigation found:

. . .

  • Most for-profit colleges charge much higher tuition than comparable programs at community colleges and flagship State public universities. The investigation found Associate degree and certificate programs averaged four times the cost of degree programs at comparable community colleges. Bachelor's degree programs averaged 20 percent more than the cost of analogous programs at flagship public universities despite the credits being largely non-transferrable.
  • Because 96 percent of students starting a for-profit college take federal student loans to attend a for-profit college (compared to 13 percent at community colleges), nearly all students who leave have student loan debt, even when they don't have a degree or diploma or increased earning power.
  • Students who attended a for-profit college accounted for 47 percent of all Federal student loan defaults in 2008 and 2009. More than 1 in 5 students enrolling in a for-profit college-22 percent-default within 3 years of entering repayment on their student loans....

Hey-Diddly-Ho, Neighbor!

Oldie but Goodie [2012]: See Senator Harkin’s For-Profit College Investigation: U of Phoenix

Glenn Roquemore, the Pacifica Institute & women's "primordial nature"

Glenn Roquemore, the Pacifica Institute & women's "primordial nature" May 21, 2013

Delivering factoids for

Turkish anti-feminists

Here’s a curious factoid. I came across the following press release, evidently dating back to April of 2008. It was posted by the “Pacifica Institute,” which has a dozen or so offices, including one in Orange County (Irvine):


Glenn R. Roquemore-Irvine Valley College President Speaks at PI - Orange County

Today Pacifica Institute hosted Irvine Valley College President Glenn Roquemore. Before this luncheon forum in Irvine , New Zealand Consul General Rob Taylor and Irvine Mayor Beth Krom were the keynote speakers. Consul General Rob Taylor spoke about Welcoming Diversity as a Path to Peace and Mayor Beth Krom’s topic was How to Create a Balanced Community. Dr Glenn Roquemore’s topic is the Role of Community Colleges in Higher Education.

Dr. Glenn Roquemore is President of Irvine Valley College….

Dr Roquemore gave very important statistics of the Community Colleges in California….

You’ll recall that, in the past, we’ve kidded Roquemore over his tendency to approach speaking always as an occasion to dispense the merest of statistics as though they were astonishing jewels. "Two percent of our students," he'll say, "sport a vestigial tail." Huh?

What’s the matter with ‘im? Dunno.

But just who are these “Pacifica Institute” people?

According to PI’s website,

Pacifica Institute was established in 2003 as a non-profit organization by a group of Turkish-Americans. Pacifica Institute designs and executes projects covering social welfare, education, poverty, and conflict resolution issues in collaboration with scholars, activists, artists, politicians, and religious leaders-communities….

. . .

The Institute seeks to …[engage] in a variety of civic activities and [seeks to invite] others to generate and share insights, thereby removing barriers to confidence-building and trust….

Gosh, it sounds as though that illiterate pseudo-educator, Raghu Mathur, may have had a hand in writing this stuff.

Elsewhere, PI presents “Frequently Asked Questions about Pacifica Institute and Fethullah Gülen.”

One naturally assumes, then, that Mr. Fethullah Gülen and his ideas are important to PI. Sure enough, in the Q&A, Gülen and his movement are central:

Fethullah Gülen

Q: How is the Pacifica Institute involved with the Gülen movement?

A: Some of the founders and donors of Pacifica Institute are participants of the so-called Gülen, or Hizmet movement. Pacifica Institute was inspired by the movement’s philosophy and goals….

. . .

The Gülen/Hizmet movement is a values-driven social movement and following a philosophy that advances interfaith dialog, education and community service as tools to build a better and more harmonious society. The movement was inspired by the philosophy and teachings of Fethullah Gülen, a Turkish scholar, author and advocate….

. . .

Q: Who is Fethullah Gülen?

A: Fethullah Gülen is a Turkish scholar, preacher, thinker, author, opinion leader, education activist, and peace advocate who is considered by many to be one of the world’s most influential religious thinkers. He is regarded as the initiator and inspirer of the worldwide civil society movement, the Gülen Movement, which is committed to education, dialogue, peace, social justice, and social harmony….

Well, I’ve done a little looking, and this Gülen fella is mighty controversial, in some circles at least.

I skimmed a couple of sites, which suggested that Gulen is, among other things, a conservative and a vocal opponent of feminism (although I ask that readers judge for themselves based on his writings--and the writings of his mouthpieces).

So I went to the Fethullah Gülen website. There, I searched the term “feminism” and that brought me to a page with links to various relevant essays, evidently by Mr. Gülen, including The Gülen Movement: Gender and Practice.

I clicked on that. That essay includes this passage:

Although he promotes equality between the sexes, Fethullah Gülen's views on gender can indeed be described as complementary. He sees women and men as having equal value but inheriting different roles and characteristics due to physical and psychological differences. He classifies men as "physically stronger and apt to bear hardship" and women as "more compassionate, more delicate, more self sacrificing" (Gülen 2006: 1). Although he does state that women can be involved in any field of work he idealizes the mother as the pure educator (Gülen 2006: 2) implicitly implying that the man should be the family provider. This may open up for critique on behalf of Western feminists or scholars of religion and gender. According to this relatively new academic discipline[,] gender is a social construction. Human beings are born with different sexes, but social roles and expectations of fulfillment of these are constructed and emphasized by the norms that prevail in society.

Another link takes one to an essay entitled Women Confined and Mistreated. Here are some excerpts:

As a reaction to all the injustice done to women … a movement to claim women's rights emerged, particularly in the West. Even though this movement is considered an awakening of women, it occurred as a reaction and was doomed to imbalance like all other reactionary movements and ended up in extremism. Although the starting point was to defend women, in time it deviated from the original aim to the degree of being full of hatred towards men and to feeling a grudge against them. The movement named feminism, which was born from the idea of protecting women and providing them with rights equal to those of men, has only left behind longing, sorrow, and wreckage as a movement of discontentment….

. . .

According to Islam, women's role in this world is not only restricted to doing the housework and raising children. In fact, as long as it does not conflict with her primordial nature or with observing religious requirements, she is responsible for carrying out the duties that befall her in every area of society and making up for shortcomings where men fall short in social life. However, this reality was ignored in time, even among Muslims; rough understandings and crude thinking upset this system based on women and men's mutual assistance. After this upset, both family life and the social order were also upset. Different peoples' perception of their own historical heritage as a part of Islam, their seeing and reflecting their folklore and traditions as essentials of religion, and making judgments pertaining to this issue at certain periods all resulted in the usurpation of women's rights; they were pushed into a more restricted area day by day, and in some places they were totally isolated from life without consideration of where this issue leads. However, the source of mistaken thoughts and deviations in this matter is not Islam whatsoever. The mistakes belong to those who misinterpret and misapply the religion. Such mistakes in practice must definitely be corrected.

On the other hand, while correcting these mistakes, approaching the issue from a feminist standpoint will upset the balance again and an opposite extremism will replace the former. For instance, just as it is very ugly to see women as merely child-bearing objects and is insolence towards them, it is equally unbecoming and unnatural to build a society where women are unable to bear and bring up the children they wish for, or for a woman to feel a need to rebel against marrying and to avoid bearing children in order to show that she is not a machine. As a woman is not a dirty dish, her place at home is not confined to the kitchen with the dirty dishes. However, a woman who claims to have no household responsibilities and thereby turns her home to a quarters for eating and sleeping is far from being a good mother, a good teacher, and a good spiritual guide to her children.

Besides all this, it is another form of oppression to make women work under difficult conditions, such as mining and road-building. It contradicts human nature to push women into heavy tasks like agricultural manual labor, or military field operations, and other harsh pursuits, just for the sake of proving their equality with men; it is nothing but cruel torture. It shows ignorance of women's qualities and conflicts with their primordial nature. Therefore, just as an understanding which imprisons women at home and takes them completely away from social life is absolutely incorrect according to Islam, likewise, depriving women of financial support, preventing them from bearing and raising children in security, and forcing women into the labor force to do uncongenial work is also oppressive. A woman, like a man, can have a certain job as far as her (and his) physiology and psychology are taken into consideration; but both women and men should know that a good life consists of sharing and division of labor. Each should assist the other by doing tasks in compliance with their nature.

Yikes.

I’m in no position to judge this “take” on feminism relative to the various Muslim communities (e.g., in Turkey) and the possibility of discourse within them. But it’s pretty plain that Gülen’s philosophy, as expressed here, is antithetical to some of the core tenets of Western feminism, broadly understood. It seems clear that Gülen is not likely to gain many adherents or followers among contemporary Westerners, with their commitment to the ideal of equality, as they understand it at least, between the sexes.

The Wikipedia article on Gülen is alarming—if, that is, it can be trusted. It asserts that

...Gülen's views are vulnerable to the charge of misogyny. As noted by Berna Turam, Gülen has argued:

"the man is used to more demanding jobs . . . but a woman must be excluded during certain days during the month. After giving birth, she sometimes cannot be active for two months. She cannot take part in different segments of the society all the time. She cannot travel without her husband, father, or brother . . . the superiority of men compared to women cannot be denied." [35]

Berna Turam, Northeastern

Wikipedia is quoting Berna Turam, a serious academic at Northeastern U. She herself seems to cite a work from 1996 entitled Fethullah Gulen Hocaefendi ile ufuk turu (Aktuel kitaplar dizisi). It is written in Turkish.

One should be careful to note that the superiority that Gülen is discussing is physical, not moral, or at least that's how I read it. Even so, his remarks are mighty offensive, at least to these Western ears.


Gosh Glenn, you really oughta be more careful who you hang out with. Philosophically, these Gülenites are a problem, at least relative to most of our community on these shores.

I'll see if I can shed more light on the Pacifica Institute and what it means for the likes of Glenn Roquemore and Beth Krom (a Democrat) to be hanging out with 'em.

Votes of "no confidence" - 1999

from the Dissenter's Dictionary, Dec. 3, 1999


MATHUR, RAGHU P.



In April of 1997, in an action later judged a violation of the Open Meetings law, the Board Majority appointed chemistry teacher and campus joke Raghu P. Mathur as Interim President of Irvine Valley College. At the time, Mathur had no experience as a full-time administrator. Five months later, through a process that violated board policy, and amid strong faculty opposition, the BM appointed Mathur permanent president. That action, too, was later voided owing to violations of the Brown Act. Two years later, despite his miserable record, which included a vote of no confidence and the palpable contempt of nearly all IVC faculty and staff, the board majority renewed Mathur's contract, giving him a raise and a $200 a month "security stipend."

Mathur was hired as an instructor in 1979, and he quickly established a reputation as a schemer and liar who would stoop to anything in order to secure an administrative position. Owing to his manifest unsavoriness, however, that ambition was consistently thwarted both inside and outside the district.

His intrigues soon gained him the hatred of Ed Hart, IVC's first president. In 1986, Hart retired, and the college adopted a "faculty chair" model, partly for fiscal reasons. Soon, Mathur "ruled" the tiny school of Physical Sciences as its chair. During the "chair" era, he was, without doubt, the chief abuser of that office, engaging in endless machinations while arranging a lucrative schedule that netted him a salary far in excess of the college president's ($124,000 in 1996-7).

During this period, Mathur continued to seek administrative positions. When he was passed over, he played the race card, charging everyone in sight with "discrimination," apparently on the sole grounds that he had not been selected.

Mathur's habit, as chair, of circumventing the governance process eventually yielded an official censure of him by IVC's "Instructional Council' in April of 1994. Earlier, the IC membership had all agreed not to go outside the process--particularly with regard to the selection of the IVC presidential search committee chair. During an IC meeting in March (of 94), Mathur was asked whether, despite the agreement, he had presented a petition, urging the selection of a particular faculty member, to the chancellor. He answered that he had "not forwarded" a petition to the chancellor or anyone. In fact, he had and, apparently on that basis, the chancellor did appoint the faculty member as (co)chair.

When this came to light in April, Mathur was censured. According to the minutes of the April 5 meeting, "Instructional Council had agreed that no one will work outside of the IVC governance structure and agreed-upon processes. They felt that Raghu had lied to the Council...[One member] made a motion to censur Raghu Mathur for lying to the Instructional Council regarding the petition and the presidential search process and for misrepresenting not only Instructional Council, but also the faculty...Raghu Mathur stated that he did not lie to the Instructional Council. He said that he was asked if he had forwarded the petition to the Chancellor and he said he had not. He did admit, however, that he had shown the petition to Chancellor Lombardi...Raghu felt that the members of Instructional Council were making too big of a deal out of the situation...The question was called and the motion passed with 8 ayes, 3 noes, and 4 abstentions."

Classified employees, too, have at times found it necessary to complain about of Mathur's conduct. For instance, in August of 1995, IVC administration received a letter from Leann Cribb, Executive Secretary (and formerly secretary for the School of Physical Sciences), in which she wrote: "Mr. Mathur routinely revises facts and manufactures innuendo to suit his objectives." During the January '98 Board meeting, classified employee Julie Ben-Yeoshua explained that Mathur was the reason she was seeking employment elsewhere: "Since you first appointed Raghu Mathur as the interim president, the atmosphere at IVC has changed drastically; morale is in the gutter...[Mathur's] inability to tell the truth is so natural that I have come to gauge everything he says and writes by believing the complete opposite...."

By the mid-90s, Mathur had come to regard Terry Burgess, then-VP of Instruction, as his nemesis, and, in 1996, he tried to discredit Burgess with the board. In the spring of '96, a student sought to enroll in a chemistry course without enrolling in the concurrent lab, and the matter came before the chair--Mathur. Though the student provided documentation proving that she had done the equivalent work at UCI, Mathur denied the request, whereupon the student asked for a review of the decision by the Office of Instruction. Mathur agreed to go along with the Office's decision.

Later, however, he accused Burgess of signing the student's admittance card despite non-approval by the instructor. Mathur convinced his school to send a resolution of complaint to the board (and also to the senate and the union), appending the student's transcripts, without her permission, an action that violated the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and district policies. When then-IVC president Dan Larios learned of this, he requested an opinion from the district's attorneys regarding the legality of Mathur's action. The opinion, dated March 18, 1996, indicates that Mathur acted improperly, violating FERPA and board policy 5619. Larios was fed up.

Realizing that Larios now planned to deny approval of him as chair of his school, Mathur, as per usual, scrambled to lobby board members for support. On March 29, Larios met with Mathur; he explained that he had lost confidence in Mathur and that Mathur had better "change." In the end, Larios wrote a memo (May 14) expressing his serious reservations about Mathur's leadership, owing to his repeated circumventing of established processes and his violations of board policy, and placed him on probation. If there were any further violations of process, wrote Larios, Mathur would be removed as chair.

In the meantime, Mathur asked the senate to censure Burgess. It declined to do so, citing Mathur's misdescription of crucial facts. Larios, troubled by Mathur's misrepresentations, sent out a memo explaining that Burgess had in no sense acted improperly.

In December of '96, the Board Majority era began, and Larios sensed that it was time to move on. Normally, the VP of Instruction—Terry Burgess--would serve as interim president, but the BM blocked his selection, and, in March, Lombardi was chosen as a sort of compromise. But in April, Frogue presented another one of Mathur's petitions--this time, an “anonymous” petition urging Mathur's selection as president. On that basis, Mathur became IVC president.

Mathur's outrages while president are too numerous to recount here. Suffice it to say that in the early months of 1998, the IVC academic senate instituted a Special Inquiry into “abuses of power.” By April, it became necessary to abandon the investigation, owing to the number and the complexity of the charges against Mathur. Said the committee’s chair: “It’s like bailing water out of the Titanic with a tea cup…Every time we put an allegation to bed, another one jumps up” (Voice, 5/7/98). Soon thereafter, Mathur received a 74% vote of no confidence by his faculty.

Mathur has sought to rule through intimidation, punishing his critics in every way available to him. In early November of 1999, the IVC academic senate released the results of a survey of full-time faculty (78% participated). 90% disagreed with the statement, "I can express my opinion about issues at the college without fear of retribution or retaliation." The 90% figure will likely go up soon, for Mathur intends to fire an untenured instructor--a critic--for his involvement in the act of naming the plot of dirt next to the Life Sciences greenhouse. It was named the "Terry Burgess garden."


Huge Vote Against College Chief (LA Times, May 18, 2004 | Jeff Gottlieb)

Faculty in the South Orange County Community College District overwhelmingly voted no confidence Monday in Chancellor Raghu Mathur.
Of the full-time professors at Irvine Valley and Saddleback colleges who cast ballots, 93.5% voted in favor of no confidence, and 6% were against the union-sponsored measure. One person abstained.
Out of 318 faculty eligible, 246 -- 77% -- voted, according to the district faculty association….

Clueless IVC Prez Glenn Roquemore smiles as he makes nice with the enemy - August 26, 2014

Vice President, Western Region, Workforce Solutions/University of Phoenix, Chuck Parker, President, Irvine Valley College, Dr. Glenn R. Roquemore

○ Members of the Irvine Valley College community just received this gushing email from the President:

Irvine Valley College Signs Memorandum of Understanding with University of Phoenix

Irvine – Irvine Valley College (IVC) administration, faculty and staff held a formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Phoenix, Inc. (University) on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.
Irvine Valley College President Glenn Roquemore said, “This partnership will expand the many transfer opportunities available to the IVC students and staff. One of the major benefits of the MOU is the tuition discount."
Irvine Valley College students transferring to University of Phoenix into an undergraduate baccalaureate degree program … will be considered as having satisfied the general education requirements for the breadth of the liberal arts degree program….

○ IVC students get 10% off Phoenix tuition, which is way pricey.

○ Evidently, President Roquemore is not aware that entities such as the U of Phoenix exist to make huge profits by taking advantage of students who typically receive federally insured loans, putting them in serious debt. Those students, upon graduating, typically fail to find the work they were expecting and often default on their loans, forcing the taxpayer to pay. (It's a massive bubble that, one day, will pop.)

○ You’re fine with all that, are you Glenn? You're a Republican, aren't you? Yeah. I see you smiling with those vets you claim to love!

○ Alas, the "predatory for-profits" problem is especially egregious in the case of Vets, who pay their way via the new GI Bill:


GI Bill funds failing for-profit California colleges

(Desert Sun)

The ever-clueless Glenn R

Over the last five years, more than $600 million in college assistance for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans has been spent on California schools so substandard that they have failed to qualify for state financial aid.
As a result, the GI Bill — designed to help veterans live the American dream — is supporting for-profit companies that spend lavishly on marketing but can leave veterans with worthless degrees and few job prospects, The Center for Investigative Reporting found.

. . .

Financial records analyzed by CIR show that California is the national epicenter of this problem, with nearly 2 out of every 3 GI Bill dollars going to for-profit colleges.
The University of Phoenix in San Diego outdistances its peers. Since 2009, the campus has received $95 million in GI Bill funds. That's more than any brick-and-mortar campus in America, more than the entire 10-campus University of California system and all UC extension programs combined.

. . .

The school's large share of GI Bill funding reflects more than just the number of veterans enrolling. The programs are expensive. An associate degree costs $395 a credit, for instance — nearly 10 times the cost at a public community college.
The University of Phoenix won't say how many of its veterans graduate or find jobs, but the overall graduation rate at its San Diego campus is less than 15 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Education, and more than a quarter of students default on their loans within three years of leaving school.
Those figures fall short of the minimum standards set by the California Student Aid Commission, which dispenses state financial aid. The commission considers either a graduation rate lower than 30 percent or a loan default rate of more than 15.5 percent clear indicators of a substandard education.
No such restrictions govern GI Bill funds. And nearly 300 California schools that received GI Bill money either were barred from receiving state financial aid at least once in the past four years or operated without accreditation, CIR has found.

. . .

Of the $1.5 billion in GI Bill funds spent on tuition and fees in California since 2009, CIR found that more than 40 percent — $638 million —went to schools that have failed the state financial aid standard at least once in the past four years.
Four of those schools were University of Phoenix campuses, which together took in $225 million….

An Enemy In Common? The Case Against For-Profit Colleges

(Cognoscenti [NPR Boston])

… As Americans, we should all be concerned that veterans are being taken advantage of by unscrupulous profiteers. As taxpayers, we should be aware that we are paying for this disservice. Approximately 85-95 percent of the for-profits’ revenue comes from taxpayer-supported benefits….

For-Profit College Investigation--Is the New GI Bill Working?: Questionable For-Profit Colleges Increasingly Dominate the Program

([Senator] Harkin newsletter)


…Senator Harkin's HELP Committee investigation found:

. . .

  • Most for-profit colleges charge much higher tuition than comparable programs at community colleges and flagship State public universities. The investigation found Associate degree and certificate programs averaged four times the cost of degree programs at comparable community colleges. Bachelor's degree programs averaged 20 percent more than the cost of analogous programs at flagship public universities despite the credits being largely non-transferrable.
  • Because 96 percent of students starting a for-profit college take federal student loans to attend a for-profit college (compared to 13 percent at community colleges), nearly all students who leave have student loan debt, even when they don't have a degree or diploma or increased earning power.
  • Students who attended a for-profit college accounted for 47 percent of all Federal student loan defaults in 2008 and 2009. More than 1 in 5 students enrolling in a for-profit college-22 percent-default within 3 years of entering repayment on their student loans....

Hey-Diddly-Ho, Neighbor!

Oldie but Goodie [2012]: See Senator Harkin’s For-Profit College Investigation: U of Phoenix