RUSH: Denver, this is Joe. Thank you for waiting, Joe. Really appreciate it. Great to have you on the show. Hi.
CALLER: Bucket list dittos. I cannot believe I am talking to you. Dream come true, Rush.
RUSH: Well, thank you. I really appreciate that. Glad you got through here.
CALLER: Well, let me tell you, the Bush tax cuts back in 2006 made college 529 plans totally tax-exempt. So long as you put the money in it, it grew tax-exempt, you take that money out, you pay for your kids’ college, it was tax-exempt. Now Barack Obama wants to get rid of that Bush tax cut for the middle class, and when you take that 529 money out, that’s how he’s gonna pay for community colleges. It’s buried in the plan. Forbes has an article about it, and I just can’t believe that he’s out there saying this is for the middle class, when he’s lying and taking away this tax exemption from the middle class. It just blows my mind.
RUSH: I know, doesn’t it? That’s my whole point. You know, Fox just got through running a package. They did man-on-the-street interviews, and do you know what the subject of it was?
RUSH: How the rich aren’t paying their fair share has resurfaced all of a sudden now as a cultural curiosity in America. So there they are out on the street, man-on-the-street interviews, “Do you think the rich aren’t paying their fair share?” Where did that come from? Last night. That all comes from the fact that Obama claims the rich aren’t paying their fair share, we gotta raise taxes on the rich, and so a whole brand-new narrative is born. The rich aren’t paying their fair share. It’s been recycled, this is the fifth or sixth time in the last 27 years this has happened. Now, your example here —
CALLER: If you want to do stuff for the middle class, you need to just cut the taxes for my boss so he can employ more people.
RUSH: Precisely. But it’s worse that then. Because community college, as you have just illustrated, for a lot of people is not gonna be free. They’re actually gonna end up paying for it, but even the people — it’s not free. Somebody’s paying for this. A lot of people are going to be paying. Here’s what’s really worrisome. You know, I saw something the other day. I don’t think I printed this out, ’cause I was in a mad dash in a hurry. I can find it if I have to. That would not be a problem. I believed it, too, because of things I’m learning with the Rush Revere books that I’m writing.
You might have seen this yourself, Snerdley, in your daily dalliance with show prep, that the first two years of college have declined so much that they’re now the equivalent of a high school education. That a high school diploma ten years ago is now what you get after two years of college. Well, I’m sorry, folks, but that is a huge decline in education achievement. That is going backwards. It used to be that a high school diploma, if that’s all you had, you might have a problem. You had to have at least some college to have some sort of respectability.
But now education has been so watered down — and, by the way, what’s watering it down, political correctness and appeasing the slowest learners and appeasing the lowest IQ students in the class. We can’t humiliate them. We can’t have smarter or faster learning students maintain their pace because that’s not fair to those who don’t learn as fast. So we are defining educational standards down.
You’ve gotten to the point now where the first two years of college used to be what you came out of high school with. And now you throw this whole free community college thing in there. Why is that even an issue? You know why that’s an issue? Is because college itself, not junior college, but major institution of higher learning college, the tuition is exorbitant. We’re getting to the point we need education care to send kids to college much like you need health care to go to the doctor. It’s flat-out absurd.
And you’ll note, the president never, ever chastises Big Education. Never demands they lower prices. The president and the Democrats will chastise Walmart all day long and they’ll chastise ExxonMobil all day long and they’ll get all over the cable companies, and they’ll get all over the telephone companies. Their enemies list is one industry after the other, drugs, pharmaceutical, but Big Education can raise their prices, it doesn’t matter how much, and all we get is Obama and the Democrats launching new programs, student loans, student this, free community college in order for people to be able to access it and afford it.
And why is this the case? It’s because the citadel of education is where the American left is. They own it. And there’s not gonna be a serious move at reducing salaries for these professors, these communists and socialists that are teaching your kids. And that’s why there’s not gonna be any serious alteration to what’s happening to college athletics because of the money.
So now this whole push for community college. Part of it is that four-year college, people can’t afford it. So it’s another giveaway, it’s another way for the Democrats to try to make the little guy think that it’s the Democrats looking out for ’em. It’s the Democrats and their policies which are destroying all of these long-held traditions and institutions that people thought were tantamount to being part of the American dream. And now they’re out of reach for more and more Americans. And the Democrats come along, “Doesn’t matter. We’re gonna give it to you.” But they’re not. Somebody’s paying for it.
Take a quick time-out. I appreciate the call, Joe, very much.
RUSH: I got this Forbes article that Joe in Denver was talking about. This is classic. Joe was exactly right. Let me read you some excerpts. The Forbes article is entitled, “Obama’s New State Of The Union Tax Hike On Middle Class 529 College Savers.”
Here’s a little bit from the article. “One tax hike in particular was very odd, since itÂ’s aimed almost exclusively at middle class families with kids — the exact demographic the goodies in the tax plan is targeting.”
This is written postspeech, and the author of the story is saying this tax increase that Obama proposed last night is really odd since it’s aimed at middle-class families with kids who’ve set aside money for college. “The levy in question would increase taxes on college savings accounts known as ‘529 plans’ (after their section in the Internal Revenue Code). By definition, these accounts are really only used by middle class families.”
Here’s the money quote from the piece. “But there it is buried on page 9 of the leaked document: ‘The PresidentÂ’s plan will roll back expanded tax cuts for 529 education savings plans that were enacted in 2001 for new contributionsÂ…'” It’s a Bush plan, and it’s essentially an education savings plan much the same way that health savings accounts have been talked about. Parents — and obviously this is for middle-class families — could set aside a certain amount of money, kind of like a 401(k), except it’s exclusively for use in college and junior college tuition. So a family could set aside money in the 529 account and it’s tax-free, but the money has to be used when it’s withdrawn for tuition.
If you withdraw it and use it for anything else, then you pay a penalty, like an early withdrawal from your 401(k). And Obama’s eliminating that. As part of his free community college he’s eliminating the 529. He’s eliminating the opportunity for the middle class to set aside tuition money tax-free, under the guise of providing free junior college tuition.
Another thing watering down education standards, no core curriculum, no requirements. So Joe was calling to say, “What the heck is this?” Here’s a plan that was set up and people have put money in it, and you take it off the top of your income so it’s not taxed, and it goes into this account for your kids’ education, and if you use it for that, then, fine. If you withdraw it early or use it for something other than education, you have to pay the tax on it. The program’s gonna be destroyed, or eliminated. It was a tax cut for the middle class! The president is eliminating essentially a tax cut for the middle class! All the while claiming he’s raising taxes on the rich. I’m sorry; if you eliminate a tax cut, you are raising taxes. And it’s not a semantics argument. It’s legitimate.