Because I'm old and isolated from the current college-age crowd, I did not understand Bernie Sander's appeal to the college age crowd. But after reading stories with quote after quote from college students, I get it.
He repeatedly offers up his idea of tuition-free public colleges. And in May 2015, the month after he announced his candidacy for President, he introduced his College for All Act. Golly gee, that sounds really good.
Being a skeptic, I immediately checked out how that has worked in his home state of Vermont where he must have successfully implemented it.
Well, actually no. He apparently hasn't sold the idea in his tiny home state of Vermont. In fact, it costs in-state students at Castleton University (formerly known as Castleton State College) $10,248 a year compared to $7,194 a year at California's Humboldt State University (formerly known as Humboldt State College).
So just to clear things up, in the tiny state of Vermont, Bernie-the-Leader hasn't even gotten the tuition cost down to California's level. Or maybe he never even tried. Maybe he just found a way to stir impressionable college students.
Incidentally, what you discover about tuition is that it is, at best, less than a third of the cost of a year at college. And that Vermont college website misleads by showing a total not incluidng books, supplies, transportation, and miscellaneous costs, which are indicated on the California web site. You college students are smart enough to add and subtract, right? So figure it out.
But, hey, free tuition as a democratic socialist idea is a proven solution to a major problem. Well, not exactly, or maybe not at all. I won't repeat the discussion found in this NPR story Fact-Check: Bernie Sanders Promises Free College. Will It Work?
Instead, I'm going to suggest that you budding socialist college students who are feeling the Bern study what happened when the Scottish National Party took power in Scotland in 2007 and eliminated tuition fees at public universities.
A Centre for Research in Education Inclusion and Diversity, University of Edinburgh, study concluded that that the free tuition plan essentially redistributed 20 million pounds from poor students to rich ones. That's a curious program for a socialist government to implement. But hey, that wouldn't happen with Bernie's leadership steering a right wing Republican controlled House of Representatives, right?
Whenever a politician, be it Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders, appeals to your self-interest with simple ideas, do some research! Otherwise you may end up feeling like a simpleton.
If you are a democratic socialist you should have serious concerns about state universities in this country. Google "corporations fund state universities" to give yourself something to worry about.