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Depression Hits The Colleges And Universities

If Harvard loses to Yale in next year's rowing regatta we'll know why. It will be because, said one rower to the Crimson, Yale will still have hot breakfasts, which Harvard won't. The depression has hit the big time educational institutions as well as everyone else.

The saddest story about the financial catastrophe I've read recently was an article by Jonathan D. Glater in the June 10 New York Times. It was about Reed College, an elite institution intellectually and not quite a pauper financially. But, after the Wall Street disaster, that it is how it's being forced to behave.

Reed's admissions committee was just about ready to send out its "good news" letters when it realized it couldn't afford the cohort. So it dropped "100 needy students before sending out acceptances, and substitute(d) those who could pay full freight." "Full freight" is just shy of $50,000 per year. In fact, just $50 shy.

It also admitted 45 more students than it did last year, and these without financial aid.

I am not picking on Reed. Virtually every college and university is doing some version of the big cut.

It may be hard to remember that it was just about one year ago when congressional populists on the left and the right were proposing legislation to tax rich schools to pay for poorer ones. This is was demagoguery, disgusting demagoguery.