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Rep. Allen West continued his pattern of labeling anything he doesn't like as communism at a recent town hall meeting in his Florida district. West's answer to whether student loan interest rates should be doubled somehow jumped from supporting private lending to "state control of education" to the Communist Manifesto:
It's very simple. Keep it 3.4 percent, open up college education loans as it once was to all financial institutions so that you can have competition, which is something that this government does not seem to understand. That does drive prices down, that is better for the consumer. But that's not the case.

Now remember, if you start dictating where people can go to school, the loans that they can get, the payment of those loans—I gotta tell you, that's something that's in a book written by Marx and Engels called the Communist Manifesto. It's called the state control of education. Very dangerous tactic.

Elsewhere in his remarks, according to Democratic opponent Patrick Murphy's campaign, West "stated that college students were becoming too dependent on Pell Grants, which he believes are 'just the same as food stamps'" and said that "Our college students need to understand that they're being used by the government to be a revenue-producing entity." So college students are on the one hand dependent on the food stamp-like government handout of Pell Grants but are on the other hand being used by the government to produce revenue through student loan interest. Instead of being handled by the government at a 3.4 percent interest rate, those loans should be handed over to banks and private lenders instead for them to produce revenue. Otherwise, communism!

The big question is what Allen West thinks about K-12 education. See, what the Communist Manifesto actually calls for is not "low-interest government loans for college students" but "Free education for all children in public schools." That is a policy held throughout the United States that is literally straight out of the Communist Manifesto, and we all know how Allen West feels about communism. Clearly free education in public schools is something he should be actively campaigning against, and as long as he isn't, reporters and voters should be asking him why not.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Tue Jun 19, 2012 at 09:54 AM PDT.

Also republished by ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Progressive Hippie, German American Friendship Group, and Daily Kos.

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