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LAT: A GI Bill for the 21st century

The LAT this morning has a piece by Edward Humes, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author, most recently, of "Over Here: How the GI Bill Transformed the American Dream", suggesting that the country needs an updated GI bill. Sure seems like a great idea to me.

A GI Bill for the 21st century [LAT, 10.26.2006]
The modern GI Bill pales in comparison to the 1944 legislation that took care of veterans and fueled postwar progress...

Today's veterans are getting shortchanged. Instead of a full ride to any college, the modern GI Bill's education support tops out at $36,000 for a four-year degree — barely enough to cover the average state university and well short of UCLA's $19,500 annual tuition, room and board. Forget about the private colleges once covered by the GI Bill — $36,000 would pay for only a year at many of them...

Would such a program be expensive? Absolutely — about what we've spent so far on the war in Iraq. But spending hundreds of billions at home to generate opportunities for future doctors, scientists, teachers, leaders and productive, healthy citizens would be a far sounder investment, with a proven rate of return. Where would you rather spend your tax dollars?

In an era in which college is a skyrocketing financial burden for many families, when homeownership is less affordable than ever, when the nation is losing its competitive edge in advanced degrees and when the American dream so generously nurtured after World War II is under siege, it is time to expect greatness from our government once again. Our children deserve it.

Posted by Christopher Dorobek on Oct 26, 2006 at 12:15 PM


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