DeVos Proposes to Curtail Debt Relief for Defrauded Students

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos proposed requiring that borrowers prove that they have fallen into financial distress or that their colleges knowingly deceived them to get aid.

Comments: 180

  1. This was a deplorable practice by these institutions. But, nowhere is there ANY mention of caveat emptor, common sense, personal responsibility, financial literacy, etc., etc. Gotta love the nanny state.

  2. @Michael Sherman - do you really expect an individual to have the resources to thoroughly investigate institutions whose financial departments are dedicated to defrauding its customers and the Federal government? Especially if those individuals have to devote effort to the everyday business of keeping a job? The whole purpose of regulations is to make it harder for fraudulent institutions to hide their true nature from prospective customers and to make it more difficult for them to come into existence in the first place. Please leave your ivory tower and rejoin the real world.

  3. @Michael Sherman The people preyed upon by these institutions are frequently the most vulnerable, often from disadvantaged backgrounds and without the resources available to many others. There will always be dishonest businesses, but why in the wide world does our government allow these fraudulent institutions to victimize students and then stick them with tens of thousands in debt? These places need to be monitored and regulated, but clearly that is not what Betsy DeVos has in mind. Given what Donald Trump did with "Trump University," it is not surprising that his administration has no empathy for defrauded college students.

  4. @Michael Sherman Is this really a "nanny state" situation? While I support mostly free markets, because nobody really wants totally free markets, and believe consumers need to beware and educate themselves before making buying decisions, it is difficult to know the truth sometimes when a seller uses partially baked data to augment reality. If a bank sold you on a loan based on a 3% interest rate, but added hidden fees, etc. resulted in an effective rate of 7.5% interest you might scream "deceptive advertising." I do not think schools should get a free pass if they claim 1/2 baked graduation rates and completely baked job placement data to reel in potential students. Ultimately buyers cannot be expected to make educated decisions if they are expected to rely on false data.

  5. Ah Betsy, You are so incompetent. You should sell vitamins and call it a day before people get hurt. The students who wanted debt relief were the ones who were pulled in by lies and deceit by for-profit colleges who never gave them an education, but cackled as they took their money. They preyed on vulnerable students from, often, minority groups desperate to better themselves. But Betsy, you just don't get it, do you? You've always been wealthy. Coddled. Spoiled. You were led to believe that you are more competent than you are because you donate huge amounts of money to politicians, like Trump, a horrid man, who then return the favor to you. You are no more qualified to lead education here in the US than I would be qualified to tame lions. We could choose just about any public school teacher, or principal, or superintendent in this country and they would know more than you about education. What have you done so far? You've supported charter schools, whose track record is abysmal. You are now trying to hurt students who were lied to, pressured to, take out loans for illegitimate schools. You are protecting the monied people, as you are a monied person, and you care nothing for those who are struggling. Those peasants. Your job is promote and support education and the PEOPLE of this country trying to get an education. Your job is not to cause more financial hurt, your job is not to bring DOWN education in this country. Please resign and go sell vitamin C.

  6. But...but...these cabinet secretaries have been carefully chosen for the skills they bring to their various departments. First goal: erase all sign that Obama was ever in office. Second goal: loosen up that pesky red tape that stands between the oligarchs and a virtual gusher of cash. Goal three: make sure only the most “qualified” reap the benefits of reorganization, repeals, and replacements. That goes for personnel, policies, and legislation. The gap between the “haves” and “have nots” is now being jaws-of-life-separated wider. Wonder what it was like under feudalism? That’s goal four.

  7. @Katie Nailed it. Bravo.

  8. Love it Katie!

  9. Funny country we live in. Trump (and many of his cronies) has declared bankruptcy multiple times to the tune of god knows how many dollars. Was he forced to provide evidence that he was misled to get out from under? No--that privilege is reserved for students so stressed by debt that have little chance to ever make it up the economic ladder. And note--now they will have to "prove" they were swindled. So all they need do is engage an expensive attorney--no problem for a struggling debt slave. But let's go back to the beginning; back to 2005 when the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act was passed (note the Orwellian "Consumer Protection" in the title). It is deemed "abusive" to borrow in order to obtain an education which might lead to earning power and stability in life and then be unable to repay. But all others may apply for bankruptcy as often as they like. What moral calculation is used to single out students whose choice is either borrow or forgo higher education while giving anyone else multiple free passes?

  10. All colleges are businesses, but for-profit colleges throw shareholders into the mix, and remove the high standards that support the prestige of normal colleges. They cajole almost all attendees into taking out federal loans to cover their all aspects of their education, typically set at the highest amounts allowable by law. Students either drop out of finish with a degree of questionable value, but their motivation is to turn a profit, not provide an education. If it smells like our for-profit medical insurance industry that makes increases profits by denying care, you nailed it. Meanwhile, in the rest of the civilized world, citizens attend college for free, and they can pursue a career based on their desires rather than the expense of the education. Even Cuba, the poorest country in North America, provides free college to anyone who wants to go. So we can thank Ms. De Vos for protecting the thing that her party values the most: unregulated greed. This is ironic coming from a woman who has never had to work a moment of her life because of the family "free money."

  11. @robert b Put simply they are a business which exists solely because of government money in the form of student loans flowing in to them. The product they deliver is substandard at best and the students are left holding the bag. The students pay back the loans which enriched the for profit "schools" and the shareholders and CEOs get rich from it. However, there has been enough on the news about them that people should avoid them like the plague. Put them out of business by not signing up.

  12. @Robert b Cuba? Poorer then Haiti? Cubas claim to fame is education and healthcare. But that education leads to no economic opportunity except a swim across the Florida straits. No country provides a free education to anyone who wants to go. Its tests based. Its parental lobbying based. Its parental community involvement based. And, its language skill based. Make sure you send an apple for the teacher. In some countries kids are as early as 4th grade for University or not.

  13. Imagine a close friend or family member of yours is scammed on the internet or on the phone. They took out a loan of $200,000 to fund this scam. After this person realizes he/she had been taken in by phony promises, imagine the authorities saying 1) the scammers can keep operating, and there's nothing to be done; and 2) your loved one is still on the hook for the full $200,000, as that kind of loan must be paid back and can never be discharged in bankruptcy court (just like student loans). The scammers aren't responsible for the money, your loved one is. Yes, the scammers are bad people, and it's a terrible tragedy. But your loved one simply should have exercised better judgement. Caveat emptor, right? Ms. DeVos's proposed rules are despicable and immoral, and protect outright fraud - the same kind of fraud perpetrated by "Trump University," against which students successfully sued. We need a new word for "shame."

  14. @jrinsc But should taxpayers be the ones to pay back your loved one? The situation you describe is terrible, but I don't see why the taxpayers should pay that $200,000. It's not the scammer who pays it, it's the tax payers.

  15. @jrinsc No one in the Trump administration has any idea of what the word "shame" means.

  16. @Itsy. Thats how bankruptcy works. Like lets say Itsy had a Visa card and went to outback every night for a year, and then couldn't pay the bills. Same thing.

  17. Others here have noted the similarities between the fraudulent for-profit colleges and "Trump University," but they haven't carried these through to outcomes. The settlement Trump agreed to returned about 40 cents on the dollar of what they had paid. When a grifter gets to keep 60% of the grift and walk away scot free ... that's a business model, not a punishment. The obvious question is what fraction of relief are any of these defrauded students getting?

  18. I so enjoy the false dichotomy this is based on. Vicitms of fraud struggling to pay back tens of thousands of dollars that third parties stole from the federal government in their name -- those people are separate and distinct from "hard-working taxpayers?" Bold of you to play the handout card in this scenario, Betsy. These people went to college; they believed in the system; they worked hard in order to be a valuable asset to employers in their chosen field. Instead, they're a bottom barrel applicants without any higher education, career skills, certifications, degrees, or vocational training, and they no longer qualify for federal financial aid that would help them obtain such a thing. These are the people who shouldn't benefit from tax dollars? The people paying taxes in a lower bracket than they should have to, because they're trapped there now, due entirely to the federal government's inexplicable lack of oversight on what kind of institutions can leech off their educational loan system? Come on, Department of Education. You know darn well you can't garnish wages that don't exist! And I assume such pragmatic fiscal conservatives are familiar with the concept of payroll taxes -- again, it works just like wage garnishing. You don't get to use the basic, common civic duty of paying taxes as a dog whistle to tap into self-righteous this time. It's not applicable in this debate. So who exactly are you trying to cast as the unfairly put-upon heroes of this story?

  19. Of all the members of Trump's Cabinet I believe DeVos is the most insidious. Dear Betsy may have the look of a well to do grandmother but her callousness belies her image. I find it especially egregious when people take on debt for the purpose of furthering their education in the hope of improving their career only to be defrauded by schools or rendered otherwise no more employable. I have more student loan debt than I ever wished to have at this point in my life. I have been generous with my time since I was in my 20s. Silly me I thought character, compassion and generosity mattered. The Trump regime's mere existence shows how many Americans are morally bankrupt. People will vote their own interests even if millions of their fellow Americans end up being hurt. One of the primary 'religions' in the United States is greed.

  20. This is revolting. I used to work as a loan counselor for higher education and I directed a lot of people to the Board of Education website to apply for such relief. It already is a difficult process now it will be nearly impossible. Most of these victims are economically challenged as they couldn't enter the more well known universities. The two referenced schools were able to be closed down because students joined forces, but now it's each man for himself. Congratulations, aren't we proud to make America Great?

  21. Why would a supposedly fiscally conservative government party want to ensure the continued flow of cash,through federal student loans, to fraudulent,expensive and ultimately worthless degrees from for profit colleges? That's putting shady business interests above fiscal responsibility. I don't hold students blameless here. Not everyone need a college degree. And just because you can get the loan doesn't mean you should.

  22. When you create a professional environment in which one is expected to have a Graduate level degree to be considered for entry level jobs, the scene is set for crooked, shady dealings and rampant usury. It is true that students are not blameless, however, as an individual pursuing a masters program and mired deeply in student loans with high interest rates, there seems to be little option. Either I choose to cobble together part time jobs with no access to a salary, benefits, or paid leave, or I choose mega debt and pray that my hard work and hard earned degree will open doors for me. This is just the latest cruel joke in a now years old horrific comedy. I can't help but feel embittered that many individuals who are especially unforgiving of individuals seeking education today likely come from the generation (not too long ago) when a high school diploma and hard work were enough. Newsflash: those times are gone, and we young people will remain financially hollowed out, potentially forever.

  23. No surprises here. It’s mean-spirited. It undoes an Obama policy. It attacks the middle classes and the poor. It protects fraudulent universities from financial risks. Just another day in Trump’s America.

  24. @Dagwood he got a worthless degree from a business school. Evidently he was subject to fraud because he didn't learn anything about economics & business just the bankruptcy part.

  25. Ms. inherited wealth DeVos sure knows how to stick it to everyone else so she can keep her unearned status. What a poor excuse for a human being.

  26. Disgraceful. The abject meanness and greed of this administration is astounding.

  27. These sleazy for profit “universities” should be run out of business and their former student’s loans completely forgiven. What a scam. No federally funded (or guaranteed) loans for should be available these diploma mill hustlers.

  28. @Melvin: You have the right solution. I wish ... A difficulty is that there are private, for-profit schools that are legitimate, normally small and in-person. But it would not be hard to distinguish them by setting up rigorous criteria involving student outcomes, including dropouts. It's politics that has kept the blood-sucking giants like "U of Phoenix" in business.

  29. What did Trump say? He'd only get "the best" people for his government. This is as good as he can do? REALLY?

  30. @BA Ya gotta admit, it is really hard to find people this far off the normal curve so often.

  31. In Trump world, the richer you are the better you are. Actual morality is irrelevant.

  32. Sure. They're the best thieves he could find. Those who aren't as shallow and cruel as he probably fantasize about new ways to soend their loot and mistreat their household help while he babbles.

  33. Making it harder to pay off college debt is a policy that will leave the U.S. further in the past, and further away from achieving and maintaining a competitive economic advantage compared with other nations. It is in keeping with Republican narrow-minded policies of non-investment, except in the military. It's also part of Trump's corruption; De Vos was corrupt in Michigan and is merely playing on a larger stage now. So this is both ideology imposed on us, to our detriment because there will simply be less education happening, and stealing from the Federal pot.

  34. This self-proclaimed 'Christian', morally self rightous, has no soul. I wish there was a way to seize her and her husband's vast financial holdings, and use them to compensate the very people she's hurting with such policies.

  35. @Max Brockmeier You mean like Jesus guided his followers to do!

  36. College costs and student loans are in the process of creating a whole generation of people in financial distress. It's no longer that just tier one colleges and universities are out of the average student's financial reach, it's local and state colleges that are at the point. It's not uncommon to find students anywhere from $100K-$200K in debt leaving college with only a bachelors degree. Forget it if you have to obtain a post graduate degree. It's also difficult on the parents that try and help there kids out with parent plus loans at 7% or higher interest rates. This is a national catastrophy in the making. Wages are stagnant yet college tuition go up every year. If you want to know why other countries are becoming more technologically advanced , just look at our student debt to income ratio.

  37. It is a catastrophe! They really don't care. This gen will not buy houses, have furniture or have children. Yet somehow it is all okay with the master class. Because they intend to be slumlords and hand their own children billions. But their mistake? Rich people's kids are usually worthless. So our leading superior position in the world - very precarious. There will not be any future Steve Jobs, for example.

  38. @VMG there was a time when you went to a college you could afford without crippling debt. I once read about a woman who went to a private for profit school to study sociology or some something you can't get job in. She studied abroad & ended up starting a gofundme page & asking for donations on the internet to pay off her loan. Don't go to a school that charges hundreds of thousands when there are really good universities that have programs just like the expensive private for profit schools. Parents don't co-sign these loans. Make kids support their own education if they go the expensive route.

  39. @T West "There will not be any future Steve Jobs, for example." Actually, there probably will be - just not in this country.

  40. Amway Pyramid Scheme rules are now in effect per the Amway Scamming Queen. We must protect the fraudulent predator class, not the average poor American trying to improve his/her future. In April 2015, Corinthian Colleges, Inc. (CCi) was fined almost $30 million by the U.S. Department of Education. The department found the school had misled students and loan agencies about the prospects for graduates to find jobs. Within two weeks, the college shut down. Betsy DeVos wants the next Corinthian Colleges, Inc. (CCi) to have a great chance at committing the next college fraud for profit. "Only the worst conceivable people" in the Trump Administration. D to go forward; R for the great Republican Rip-Off of America and Americans.

  41. @Socrates If we ever get our country back, I would love to see all of those who confirmed this administration’s band of corporate raiders held accountable for an attack on our country. The confirmation hearings clearly showed the criminal minds of all of these evil people, and yet they were confirmed. The evidence is there, and they all should be found guilty.

  42. Debt relief is only for rich people. Just ask the Republican president.

  43. @Vanessa Hall. I mostly agree but---with the recent decision to give an extra 12 million to farmers hurt by tariffs--I might argue that relief also applies to people like to vote red in 2018 and beyond.

  44. That $12b will likely go to agribusiness at large scale. Don't hold your breath waiting for it to be distributed to small farms.

  45. That would be 12 billion, not 12 million. Many times the amount of money we are talking about here. Does ot surprise anyone that the Trump Administration prioritizes wealthy scammers over students?

  46. Trump admin are all a single hydra-headed Voldemort, suddenly in power. Sickening.

  47. This is despicable. Colleges acting in completely bad faith can defraud unsuspecting students, and those students will have NO remedy. Under revisions to bankruptcy laws, students cannot discharge educational loan debts. If you're a wealthy real estate developer, say, and you declare bankruptcy seven times, it's totally fine to leave others with the bill and walk away unscathed yourself. But a working mother who takes classes at night at one of these immoral "colleges" that promise her the moon - well, those students should have known better. It's like telling someone they can't get their possessions back if their house is robbed; they needed better locks. Ms. DeVos's new rules are utterly immoral, and are yet another example of President Trump and his allies privileging wealthy (and politically connected) corporate interests over working Americans. We need to find a new word for "shame."

  48. Perfect move on her part (1) encourage so call privatization, where cons like Trump University can exploit people, and then (2) deny debt relief so the scammers can keep their money. Is this a move aimed to benefit Trump University?

  49. I love how students struggling to pay back loans to predatory for-profit schools somehow don’t qualify as “hardworking taxpayers”. This is what happens when “never worked a day in their life tax evaders, heirs and heiresses” run the show.

  50. if you want to help the economy all student loans should be forgiven, so grads can join the main stream and afford to have a life. the banks dont need this money nor does de vos

  51. This is exactly why a billionaire should not be in this position. She is clueless to any issue outside of her privilege bubble.

  52. Get this scheming, no nothing woman away from the power to harm students in debt. They need relief not condemnation.

  53. This will be the bankruptcy generation. Greed is and will be the absolute downfall of America.

  54. Wow, she is amazing, a fantastic heartless, greedy, human being. All this means that even after being defrauded by a school you will have to PROVE that the College knowingly defrauded the student. This is outrageous , insane, and with no logic. They are making america great again, for the wealth, privileged, non poor Americans. I am feel bad for you who is in financial difficult and had higher education as path for a better life, now the odds are much much much higher ...

  55. Why should the Feds, aka the taxpayer, bail out students who feel defrauded? Why can't they sue - indidually or as part of a class action - like any other fraud claimant?

  56. @Kurfco, Sue individually - obvious, too expensive unless the injured party is wealthy. Class action suit - have you noticed how many contracts now require the individual to sign away this remedy? That contractual provision is designed to allow the type of scam that for-profit colleges put over. For the continued legality of these provisions, You may thank Republican-appointed judges, and Republican legislators acting in the interest of sketchy businesses, not in the interest of individual constituents.

  57. @Kurfco The taxpayers bail out corporations that stiff their pensioners, sticking it to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation. Why should students be held to a higher standard than CEOs?

  58. The Trump Two - Step to MAGA - Education edition. Betsy DeVos - Arranger and Choreographer Step one - remove protections and make it easier for fraudulent "Trump University" clones to fleece their students via Student loans. Step two - Help these "schools" and their loan shark "lenders" collect the vig from their unsuspecting marks. Here we go A one, two, three....

  59. For-profit online universities were outright scams that needed students for only one purpose: to get their Social Security Numbers for federally backed student loans. They didn't care if the students learned a single thing (most didn't) or earned an unrecognized degree (most didn't) or paid back their loans (most didn't). Either way, they got paid. Thanks, Federal Government. Betsy DeVos is trying to do the same thing with public education at the K-12 level. Couple for-profit charter schools with "school choice" vouchers, and billions in property taxes can be shifted away from public schools to private. It's enough to make a billionaire quiver. They've already done it with prisons as well. The genius of the plan is that the substandard, gutted schools become a perfect feeder to the private prisons. It's like printing your own money.

  60. I'm thoroughly convinced; Betsy DeVos is a caring, sharing person. Herein she demonstrates her aptitude for caring to share pain. Afflicting those least able to defend themselves against economic hardship - anything else would be free and unfair.

  61. Tell me again why “regular” people voted for this man? Seriously, if you are not a corporation or one of the 1%, I don’t know what you are getting out off this relationship. Add in the news of how the deficit is going to balloon next year due to these tax cuts. The continued work to deprive us of health care, the destruction of the environment. The negative affects already of these tariffs. The continued chatter about “reforming” social security and Medicare.....one can go on and on. All this faith in a man who inherited his wealth and went on to declare bankruptcy multiple times.

  62. Is this a joke? At this point I can't tell anymore. It's a game, how much can they get away with favoring the rich and powerful and still win elections, right?

  63. Debt bondage and reform attempts are as old as time, or at least as old as settled living. The elites use their control of land and resources to subjugate those below them. Lives and livelihoods on the line, people will agree to terms so onerous as to leave them perpetually in debt and forced to sell out their futures and sometimes even their very children. People like Solon in ancient Greece and Obama in the 21st century enact reforms but the cycle inevitably repeats. Betsy DeVos, a wealthy Amway heiress and committed hardline Christian (whatever that means), must believe indebted students will get their just rewards in the afterlife. She certainly doesn't want them to breathe free in this life, even if victims of manifest fraud.

  64. She acts like she is being affected by all this. She definitely took the loyalty pledge to get this job. She has no sympathy for the students of fraud. trump University was found guilty of fraud & trump had to settle. Other students should have the same rights as the trump ones. She doesn't want public schools, she wants worker education. Shades of dictatorship...keep the people ignorant but trained to work for low wages for the administration (maybe in coal mines). Can the people not sue to have her dismissed from her position? Or start suing like crazy to keep her & her department bogged down for years.

  65. Sincere question: does Ms DeVos and this administration want to actually help students become educated citizens capable of critical and informed reasoning - or hinder it? I've heard most dictators prefer their citizens to be uninformed and unable to have access to real and objective facts.

  66. @Barbara Brundage - remember the three slogans of Oceania's ruling party: War is Peace. Slavery is Freedom. Ignorance is Strength.

  67. Given that the two for-profit college chains are no longer in business, how does one go about proving that they were defrauded by them?

  68. @Reasoned And Rational If there's no one representing those out-of-business chains, who will be there to contradict the students and the evidence they offer of fraud? Can't be the Dep't of Education, they weren't there. I think sympathetic judges will give full weight to the testimony and evidence of the students.

  69. DeVos is clueless about her duties and the least qualified for her job. She is destroying any and all benefits for schools and students with no understanding (or caring?) of the impact she is having on education. This is just another brick in the wall she is determined to tear down.

  70. You can't get more black and white than that.

  71. One more program initiated by the Obama administration that may help people down the toilet.

  72. Helping (working) people down the toilet is a chief objective of the Trump administration. So far it's working as planned. See MG's comment above re: Trump bumper stickers and look what's happening to farmers and businesses affected by his tariffs.

  73. Won’t help the Trump University victims.

  74. Watch for Trump University” to make a comeback!

  75. Another member of the Trump Criminal Cartel who Trumpublican senators knew was manifestly unfit for the post and confirmed her anyway (with Pence's sycophantic tie-breaking aid.) She was picked for the same reason Zinke, Pruitt and Price were appointed: destroy their agencies & turn them into ATMs for the plutocrats. For the love of God, America - vote this trash out.

  76. Amway anyone?

  77. DeVos should be required to take an IQ test and share the results with the American public. She doesn't seem to comprehend and retain information.

  78. Again....another clear example of an amoral person who thrives on putting her boot on the human face.......most of her own riches made through conning others...must be great to wake up every morning to find that you have directly or indirectly caused harm to another few thousand people.

  79. This absurdly greedy administration is doing everything possible to stick it to the 99 percent, which the 1 percent views as nothing but a nuisance. Regardless of financial situation, being defrauded in the first place should be grounds for debt relief on money that was borrowed under the guise of getting a worthwhile education. The depths that DeVos & Co. are willing to sink to to further their for-profit agenda makes me sick.

  80. Ever notice how little difference there is between Republicans and organized crime?

  81. Talk about the fox guarding the henhouse. Devos's cronies who have been ripping off students for years with their bogus for profit colleges are now writing re-writing the rules to keep themselves safe. Par for the course in this corrupt, despicable administration. Students and parents, you must be vigilant when searching for a school. don't let Devos' predators get the best of you

  82. Makes one wonder if she has penciled in some type of retroactive rule that would negate the rulings against Trump U? hmmmm.....wonder.....

  83. Is there any hateful, backward, fraud-rewarding policy which will not be embraced by this administration? What is wrong with these people?! They are like cartoon villains, each racing to see who can do the best imitation of Snidely Whiplash. How can this be real?

  84. From Elizabeth Warren's questioning of Betsy Devoss during her confirmation hearings: Elizabeth Warren: "Mrs. Devos, have you ever taken out a student loan from the federal government to help pay for colege?" Betsy Devoss: "I have not." Elizabeth Warren: "Have any of your children had to borrow money in order to go to college?" Betsy Devoss: "They have been fortunate not to."

  85. They've never flown commercial either, I'll wager.

  86. @Bret In other words, Betsy knows nothing of the burden of having the yoke of a massive debt resting upon one neck. Nor does she care about its negative ramifications to our society as a whole.

  87. She’s a billionaire, what does she have to worry about?

  88. “Let them eat cake.” What an outrage. Again and again, the Trump administration bangs on the heads of the less fortunate in our society. Venality run amok.

  89. Young people: pay attention and do not forget. Republicans are and have always been for the wealthy and powerful. You must carry the almost forgotten legacy of FDR forward. My generation failed and now we are nothing more than a bulge in the snake, self-interested and enfeebled, waiting to be digested and excreted. Good riddance.

  90. @War-like Siward I remember Mitt Romney's bus being on campus at UFL during the 2012 campaign. Could not believe students were working for this guy/ Republicans! This guy said that if you cannot afford college, maybe you shouldn't go to college.

  91. @D Your generation has great potential to change this country for the better. I hope to see it and help if I can.

  92. @War-like Siward I hope that, too!

  93. Why do Republicans want to limit education to rich people? Could it be that they want only white rich men to rule the country? Keeping the rest of us ignorant by making education unaffordable and sabotaging public schools seems like a way to accomplish that.

  94. Thank goodness for Betsy DeVos. Someone's got to get the serfs back on the land, toiling without relief for their debt masters. (For those not adept at recognizing sarcasm, this is meant to be tragically ironic.)

  95. Maybe she should be looking at fraud in the for-profit education industry...

  96. “All one had to do was raise his or her hands to be entitled to so-called free money.” This from the daughter of a billionaire, who married another billionaire. Never attended a public school, nor did any of her children. How did we get to this point?

  97. @Fred C It's called capitalism.

  98. DeVos should be shutting off government loans to these scammers. As for those who believe they were scammed, they should indeed prove harm and have their loans abated proportionately.

  99. Government of the rich, by the rich and for the rich. “Every man is a king so long as he has someone to look down on.” ― Sinclair Lewis, It Can't Happen Here

  100. I doubt the soybean farmers will have to prove that Trump acted with reckless disregard to receive relief. DeVos is just trying to protect her fellow scam artists.

  101. This proudly aloof and ignorant monstrosity of an Education Secretary is merely emblematic of the contempt for fair and equitable governance, respect for expertise and science (or in this case pedagogy) that we're seeing virtually across the board in this derelict administration led by the proud derelict in chief. Its mantra is to undo anything that smacks of social fairness and opportunity, in other words, any of the enlightened output of the Obama years.

  102. This is unconscionable. While I still think these students should've known better what they were getting into with these sketchy schools, the federal government body who loaned them the money needs to suck it up and take the loss. I live in a city that has benefited immensely from her family's generous philanthropy, but Betsy DeVos is a disgrace. Shame on her!

  103. @Midwest Josh I see philanthropy from all these rich people as a means to wash their sins, so to speak. Just like during Renaissance - wealthy people would build churches/basilicas to make good with god. Gotta do some pretty bad things to think that building a church would save your soul.

  104. Taxpayers should not pay the damages for fraud committed by for-profit colleges. If that were the rule, we would be liable to the students at Trump University. And if it applied to all for-profit companies, we would be on the hook to smokers defrauded by tobacco companies. Government assistance to borrowers should be based on their inability to pay back their loans, period. You help the needy. The hoodwinked should be on their own.

  105. Spoken by someone who clearly doesn’t have any significant amount of student debt. Education is not a choice like smoking, and schools need to go through a vetting process to be eligible to receive federal funds. If those schools are no longer found to be eligible due to fraud, why should the student, or graduate, with the damaged educational reputation, be on the hook for shareholders’ greed?

  106. @michjas Even when the Federal Government aided and abetted the for profit colleges fraud?

  107. @michjas Well, since our current president was involved in the fraudulent for-profit "university" business and appears to continue to pursue things with the same level of integrity, the citizens who voted for him are among the hoodwinked. Are we on our own? and what does this even mean? The fact that you seem to avoid recognizing is that students had government loans to attend such businesses as Trump U. Thus, the government was effectively giving such operations a seal of authenticity. I don't get the tobacco company point. If the government was supporting tobacco farmers with subsidies, that would seem to be a similar case. Oh, wait...

  108. Forgive all federal student loan debt, no questions asked. Force banks that received bailout money to forgive all the private student loan debt that they created!

  109. @Lyle Rainwater Not really the point of this article, but banks didn't create the debt. Students did. Solution is simple go to a school you can afford. You have a choice in education, make a good decision.

  110. @Gary, Gary says: “Solution is simple go to a school you can afford. You have a choice in education, make a good decision.” Good thinking! Of course, if you cannot afford any school, just make the good decision of doing without an education. No education may mean few if any job prospects but, the bright side of that cloud, is that you may be eligible for welfare and the excitement of living on the edge of poverty. But, hey, that’s your problem not mine.

  111. Just another item on the long list of things that need to be remedied once the current nightmare ends. Obama inherited an unprecedented collection of messes from the last Bush administration, and that he was able to get things sort of back to normal was an accomplishment that has never been properly recognized. Whoever follows Trump will have an even more daunting task.

  112. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. She is an expert on defrauding those needing an education as is the so-called president. And now she is demanding proof. My advice to M. DeVos is that she retake home ec. (after returning to the schools), learn how to clean the kitchen this time, and then invite others over for dinner. Totally ludicrous she is!

  113. If a President can use bankruptcy to stiff his creditors, so should students.

  114. Are you aware over 60,000 Americans are currently having their minimalist Social Security payments garnished for Federally guaranteed loans? I believe the maximum Uncle Sam can steal from these elderly, disabled, struggling Americans is 25%.

  115. There are many Americans 'struggling' with student debt. Some people with educations from good schools, but in the wrong subject, doing work that doesnt require an education. They did more things right than those who chose their education from a daytime tv commercial. The issue I have with forgiving loans from colleges deemed "fraudulent" is that it is, in effect, rewarding the least intelligent people, those who couldn't figure out that they were in a racket. That is the foundational creed of the left, and why so many people find it immoral and detestable. There's nothing wrong with wanting to reward the hardest-working and smartest, not the dumbest (and this is also different from rewarding the already-wealthy). Thank you Sec. DeVos!!!

  116. Yeah, maybe they aren’t the best and brightest but here they are trying to improve themselves and broaden their prospects and with the help of the Federal government and predatory lenders they are marked for a con. Essentially these poor borrowers are being signed up for indentured servitude. What a humiliating betrayal.

  117. @sean Perhaps this program would make a bit more sense if it was coupled with criminal prosecution of the fraudsters that ran these institutions. As it is it is just a program to punish the defrauded and let the criminals off scot free, pocketing their ill gotten gains with no consequences. In other words encourage more bad behavior by rewarding it.

  118. @sean Right you are,sir! And if you happen to leave your door unlocked some evening, it's on your head when you are robbed blind. Don't even think about calling the police. You had it coming!

  119. Remember that Donald Trump created a fake for-profit university, Trump University, that was never accredited, never licensed & offered sham courses? In 'business' from 2005-2010 before the number of consumer complaints meant it had to close, Trump U. faced 3 lawsuits, including for racketeering and false claims. Two of the suits came from the federal govt and one was a suit against Trump personally. Trump finally agreed to settle 2 of the lawsuits in November 2016 for $25 million. Why anyone voted for Donald Trump knowing this - it was all public knowledge by the time the election rolled around - is bizarre. Trump's a fraud who's made his money by defrauding people - like who've founded for-profit colleges. Of course his administration would protect the universities against the duped students. And in case you think this is just Trump, take a good look at the Republican Party. While running for president in 2012, Mitt Romney was a public shill for a for-profit college founded by a friend, a hedge-fund manager, praising the college profusely at campaign events. Romney has criticized Trump as a fraudster not fit to be president, but Romney has no problem endorsing sleazy for-profit colleges when it suits his purpose. Bill Clinton also got into the act, praising for-profit colleges. If those names don't tell you everything you need to know, where have you been?

  120. Here they go again—someone explain to me once and for all why there was a Trump sticker on a beat up old car at the supermarket today. DeVos would never have been known to most of us if not for Trump and his need to have the most sadistic and ignorant of wealthy loyalists surrounding him in his quest to make America suffer. I can ubderstand people like Betsy DeVos sticking with him, but there seems to be no one so skilled at understanding the inner workings of the human brain who can help me make sense out of that bumper sticker.

  121. I don't think this woman has one ounce of passion and/or compassion for education and/or America's students. She shd be working to make education as available as possible, which includes making education as financially inexpensive as possible. Shame on her for being such a Trump puppet! And she claims to be a Christian.....when has she ever demonstrated attitudes or actions which align w those of Jesus?

  122. @dolly patterson I grew up in this environment. DeVos has no compassion for anybody unless they are rich and most important, belong to the right church. I learned this when I was six years old and attacked after visiting their church a block from my house. Yes, in bygone days children were allowed to explore a bit. Six year old children can be vicious, but oh, how do they love their Jesus.

  123. Don't forget her brother is Erik Prince of Blackwater fame - actually infamy. Prince met early on with Trump offering to set up a ' private' military force for Trump to implement wherever he wished in the world.

  124. All I can say is “See you next Tuesday!”.

  125. Why? Is this a platform of the GOP. The 7th amendment gives you the right to seek monetary damages when you’ve been wronged. These students deserved to be repaid by the people who stole their money. It’s called justice. This is the problem when you equate money with free speech and grant bill of rights protection to corporations and lobbying. You are saying some have more free speech than others, even if they (corporations) can’t vote.

  126. Meanwhile Assange is about to be evicted from the Ecuadorean Embassy; extradited to US. Wave 'bye bye' to press freedoms. Chelsea Manning's incarceration as a whistle blower was inhumane, brutal, condemned by the UN, civilized countries around the world. Assange's imprisonment will make Chelsea's look like a cakewalk.

  127. @JRoebuck Don't worry, I am sure Trump is working with McConnell and Ryan to find a way for Corporations to vote. I think the question will next be how to arrange that the number of votes one has is based on one's net worth. No more "one person, one vote"; probably more like "one million dollars, one vote", and, of course, if you don't have the million dollars, No Vote for You!

  128. I do think Asange is an anti-democracy, Russian stooge. I don’t think his actions are altruistic by any stretch.

  129. DeVos should propose that defrauded students be matriculated at trump university.

  130. Seems to me it has already been established these "institutions intended to mislead" borrowing students.

  131. First, we need to end using federal loan being used at for profit schools. This is just a government hand out to the companies that run these "diploma mills." Second, we need to hold colleges and universities accountable by making them liable for paying back a portion of the loans. This might stop them from accepting students who are not capable of doing work at the college level and get back to the business of providing an education in the true sense of the word.

  132. The government should not be guaranteeing any loans to for profit colleges. Their purpose is to profit, not to teach. If the government actually wants to guarantee the loan they should underwrite the recipient of the funds. The for profit college has no incentive to care about the student's ability to actually repay the loan.

  133. If there is a god, this creature DeVos is definitely headed for hell. What a miserable piece of work she is.

  134. What surprises me is that anyone is surprised. Another day, another way Trump shows his disdain for the 99%.

  135. How will this impact the defrauded students of Trump U?

  136. @M E R And other for profits where she has friends.

  137. We deserve the government we vote for or in the case of millennials the one we don’t bother to vote for

  138. Gee, too bad these defrauded students can’t claim that they were farmers so that Trump would try to buy their votes.

  139. Another example of how Trump is looking after "the small people." Trump/GOP motto: "No Billionaire Left Behind."

  140. Exactly what we should expect from the KLEPTOCRATIC KAKISTOCRACY, courtesy of the AMORAL GOP. Kleptocratic: Agovernment or state in which those in power exploit national resources and steal; rule by a thief or thieves. Kakistocracy: A system of government which is run by the worst, least qualified, or most unscrupulous citizens.

  141. Seems to me DeVos and Trump both were owners of private "colleges" and should be prevented from making policies or decisions about their victims.

  142. Since the Trump administration hates mainstream media-let's see what they think of regular old Wikipedia combating Betsy DeVos' friends' colleges: "The for-profit educational industry has received severe negative criticism because of its sales techniques, high costs, and poor student outcomes. In some cases operators of for-profit colleges have faced criminal charges or other legal sanctions.[1][2][3][4][5] Since 2010, for-profit colleges have received greater scrutiny and negative attention from the US government, state Attorneys General, the media, and scholars.[6][7] However, the Donald Trump administration and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos have accused the government of regulatory overreach and have loosened regulations.[8] In 2016, research by Treasury Department economist Nicholas Turner and George Washington Universityeconomist Stephanie Riegg Cellini found that students who attended for-profit colleges would have been better off not going to college at all, or attending a community college (which are non-profit); put differently, the for-profit colleges left students worse off than they were when they started." As I wrote in my non-Wikipedia comment- run a campaign warning students of the dangers of for-profit colleges and push them towards public community colleges instead. That will hurt DeVos, Trump and their cronies where it counts.

  143. If Betsy DeVos is so concerned about taxpayer dollars, why did she end Dept. of Ed. agreements to work with CFPB?

  144. Nice to see a billionaire taking away debt relief for people who can't pay their bills. Are you tired of all the winning yet?

  145. @dolly patterson I'm replying here b/c of 'reply' space limitations. With all due respect - and I agree with your sentiments wholeheartedly - you and I and everyone else who feels outraged by what's been happening need to do more than point out the obvious. Trump and his minions are shameless, the pseudo Christians who assume from the outset that their 'christianity' endows them with some moral authority are by nature hypocrites and are unlikely ever to change. Our task now is to develop simple and effective ways to articulate our anger so that others who may be swayed can easily see and understand why Trump is such a disaster. Yes, his persistent mendacity is effective, but it's not invincible. Truth and reason will prevail, but not on their own. They need to be weaponized, perhaps using the same techniques as Trump and Fox and Sinclair et al.

  146. Are you kidding me? This administration wants to pardon and push legislation for for-profit universities but want to penalize those who are defrauded by them? Wow. I remember when people claimed it was a blessing to be born in this country... it is becoming a curse each year that goes by. Of course most people can't even afford to pick up and leave so they're stuck dealing with what I want to call crimes against humanity.

  147. DeVoss is a proven investor in the for-profit school system and the school loan industry. More GOP welfare for the corrupt.

  148. This woman has a heart of stone.

  149. The common parlance for this is "blame the victim". Something I might add the GOP is exceptionally good at.

  150. What is wrong with all these Cabinet members that they so easily side with business over the citizens of this country..every single time?

  151. @Mike Businesses are 1st class citizens. We the People, not so much.

  152. Trump and the Republican Party are relentless in their obsession to shake, steal or enable the defrauding of every last penny out of our personal piggy banks. Including generations to come with their rich donor tax cuts leading to unprecedented skyrocketing deficits. That is their sole mission in seeking the power of government.

  153. Ah, yes, all this is to prevent « hardworking taxpayers » from having to foot the bill. Meanwhile today’s paper tells how the corporate share of federal tax revenues is hitting an all time low and the deficit ballooning to a trillion. The disconnect is mind-boggling,

  154. This administration tried to pass regulations like this in the dark. Now they have officially come out of the dark and no longer hide their attempts to promote business interests out in the open. Clearly Ms. DeVos has a vested interest in for profit schools, even those who defraud students. The idea that the student has to show "reckless disregard only makes it that much harder for the student who was hurt by the fraud. Where is congress, where is the out rage. I guess deregulating EPA regulations on clean air and water, backing down on the endangered species act and now telling students that they have no person to blame but themselves for getting duped by a for profit school doesn't concern or legislative leaders. The Mid terms can't get here fast enough.

  155. Crony capitalism at work. Pay day lenders and for profit colleges that saddle students with debt but no jobs. Nice cabinet there, Mr President.

  156. Rather in-character for this regime. When the regime is out, they must be prosecuted.

  157. This is nothing more or less than giving an outright license to steal to predatory lenders. Fraud is fraud--it's wrongful behavior in and of itself, for which the victim is entitled to relief, regardless of his or her own financial situation with respect to creditors. Will there ever be one day where we're not confronted by yet another outrage perpetrated by the current administration?

  158. I think what DeVos means when she says that the "educational" institutions that defrauded the students will be held responsible is that its owners must repay the government loans if corporate bankruptcy is insufficient to effect that. After all, SCOTUS said that Hobby Lobby shareholders have moral responsibility for what the corporation does and thus are entitled to deny birth control that they find morally reprehensible. There's no separation between a corporation and its owners. So why shouldn't the shareholders of these fraudulent schools be held responsible to reimburse the students they scammed? She wants individual responsibility on the part of corporate management and investors. After all, ignorance is no excuse. They should have done their own homework about the product they were selling. I am sure that is what she intends and where she is going. I am sure that is what she intends and where this will be going.

  159. @Christine: Yeah, right. In your dreams. It's a good solution, though. Too bad DeVos is so much on the side of the fraudulent for profit schools that the could never imagine holding them - or their owners and investors - liable.

  160. The cruelty and pettiness of this is mind-boggling. These students are our future; if we help them,we will reap rich rewards,as we did with the GI Bill. Education is an investment that pays and pays;it should be strongly encouraged.

  161. Charge taxpayers $12 billion to rescue farmers whose livelihood Trump's tariff war attacked Put 2.6 million jobs in jeopardy from that same reality tv tariff war Bill close to a trillion dollars for defense while destroying relationships with our allies Add a trillion and a half dollars to the deficit to give tax cuts to the ultra-rich But leave Trump University-like fake colleges free to cheat students who, arguably, are working harder than anyone to try to get a leg up. The best thing to do? Start billboard campaigns warning students of the danger of for-profit colleges and broadcast the benefits of community colleges instead. That will get DeVos' for-profit college cronies where it hurts - their wallets.

  162. Will she support suspension of debt relief for big corporations like Trump's various entities that run to bankruptcy for debt relief.

  163. @Larry Weeks Never! Corporations don't lose anything when they declare bankruptcy. They get to keep their wealth/properties. The little guy gets his wages garnished and his house taken from the bank. Long live the American way!

  164. This wouldn’t have anything to do with Trump University, would it? When is the the media going to question How Trump’s business interests may be influencing his policy decisions?

  165. 1. Don't allow for profit schools to defraud students. 2. Don't charge exorbitant interest on student loans on the backs of students who are trying to start their lives. 3. Make higher education affordable. Truly affordable. Or free. Everyone benefits from a well-educated citizenry. It also ensures young adults have disposable income to put back into the economy.

  166. And yet Trump has filed for bankruptcy how many times? Federal law for decades has been one canNOT bankrupt out of student loans. Debtor prisons aka Charles Dickens are sadly already here - especially in the South.

  167. What is needed immediately is stop the bleeding. Stop the parent plus and grad student loans for excessive amounts.

  168. $12B in taxpayer money to cushion the swing this administration took at farmers while it simultaneously withdraws support for people seeking education. It makes perfect sense if you don't really think about it.

  169. Do you think monsters know they are monsters?

  170. Simple question for Ms DeVos: “Why?!”

  171. Have to pay for farmer welfare somehow!!

  172. Betsy DeVos is to quality public education as Scott Pruitt was to the environment.

  173. Blah Blah. She is a rich lady doing the bidding of for-profit corporations. End of story. Lock her up! Betsy belongs in the clink.Bye bye after the mid-terms, I hope.

  174. Why do we have these cracker-jack educational facilities in the first place? Why not everyone go to college or junior college?

  175. Of course DeVos does not want people who have been hoodwinked by the likes of Trump University to be relieved of debt accumulated for passing riches on to fraudsters. Trump himself is a fraudulent President put in with a big assist from our countries mortal enemy and until uneducated White folk figure that out we are on a doomed path.

  176. A complete incompetent who knows NOTHING about the education system. That is unless it is her own awful record with for profit schools. An ignorant woman without compassion for those trying their best to get an education in this country. Another example of a Trump hack. SHAMEFUL!

  177. When will middle and lower income Tump voters understand the fraud perpetrated by this White House, though policy after policy that has made those voters ‘ lives harder in every way?

  178. There is something very wrong with Betsy DeVos. I can't understand how someone can be so cruel and so menacing - it's as if her goal in life is to be a cartoon villain. She is a sick human being and really needs to be admitted someplace where her mental instability can be attended to. The fact that she holds an ounce of power is an affront to the human race.

  179. Let them eat cake!

  180. Why am I not surprised? As I scroll down the page it just gets more, and more, and ..... (ad nauseam) depressing. There really is no bottom in the Trump Cesspool!