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The watchdog group should study what happened to Bridgepoint stock. Short sellers can be a company’s best friend when they panic and cover their positions.

Cavalli, the bull on Bridgepoint stock, is realistic. “It’s risky, not for the faint of heart,” he says. Bridgepoint has been overaggressive in marketing to students who can’t succeed, he admits. But he thinks the stock can go to $35 or higher.

Opinions are mixed. On September 15, Sean Wright of the publication Seeking Alpha said Bridgepoint was “deeply undervalued” and shouldn’t be hurt by new regulations. But on January 16, David Sterman of the same publication said Bridgepoint was still a good short.

However, the Obama administration has definitely grown friendlier toward business and warier of regulation. Even though the Department of Education study roundly denounced the company’s practices, if there is a softening of regulations, more Bridgepoint shorts could soil their underdrawers and push the stock higher.

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dwbat Feb. 2, 2011 @ 2:21 p.m.

If Bridgepoint only ends up getting fines, the company will be happy as a pig in chiffon. That's only a (low) cost of doing business. Microsoft long ago learned that game: A few $million in fines is no biggie, and doesn't affect profits much. Bridgepoint and their ilk are a drain on the U.S. treasury, and a disgrace to higher education. The company SHOULD be "finished."

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Don Bauder Feb. 2, 2011 @ 3:17 p.m.

You hit the nail on the head. Bridgepoint is loaded with cash. It can handle any fine. Usually, regulators' fines are minuscule, particularly compared with what the company can pay. If the Republicans force weaker regulation on the Obama administration, Bridgepoint could get off with a wrist slap. The stock could take off. It has already been strong since the announcement of the DOE's initial findings. Best, Don Bauder

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nan shartel Feb. 22, 2011 @ 7:07 a.m.

pigs in chiffon...those dang pigs get first dibs on all the fashion items ;-D

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Woodchuck Feb. 2, 2011 @ 5:27 p.m.

It seems that the taxpayers are, once again, going to be the big losers when private enterprise manages to insert themselves as a middleman-much like health insurance companies. In an ideal world taxes collected should directly fund education for all. The escalating cost of college combined with academic underachievment and few jobs plus parents that insist their kids "do something!" lead to this type of abuse. The new regulations not taking effect until July? Plenty of time to kill reform. Nice job as usual, Don

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Don Bauder Feb. 2, 2011 @ 6:51 p.m.

If the Republicans kill off or substantially soften bank, for-profit education, insurance, etc. regulation, the taxpayers will be the losers. The looting will continue. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 2, 2011 @ 7:52 p.m.

How has the ratio of population to facilities for higher education varied over time?

How has the cost of higher education varied in constant dollars (purchasing power)?

Can a young person "bootstrap" her way through a university education without incurring a lifetime of debt? How has this ability varied over time?

Are "for profits" responding to a vacuum?

How should the vacuum be filled?

Why isn't it being filled that way?

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Don Bauder Feb. 3, 2011 @ 7:21 a.m.

For-profits claim that they are filling a vacuum by offering educational opportunities to those who cannot avail themselves of a non-profit education. But critics state that these for-profits are aggressively getting students to enroll who have little likelihood of either getting a degree or getting a job if they happen to get a degree. And the federal government through its loans and grants picks up the tab. The key statistic is that for-profit students represent 10% of those in college but 44% of defaults. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 4, 2011 @ 12:12 p.m.

Can a young person "bootstrap" her way through a university education without incurring a lifetime of debt?

Not today.

SDSU was $150 a semester in 1982, community colleges were free. Today SDSU is $2500 per semester and CC are $250 per class.

UC Hastings College of the Law (public CA law school) and UCLA SOL were $5K per year in 1982, today it is close to $40K.

Professional schools like law, dentistry and medicine should have always been more, but today they are near the same cost as a private university. I knew when Dukmejin started claiming that students at community colleges could afford $5 per unit that it was just a ruse to get his foot in the tuition fee door, and once that door was open the sky would be the limit-and I was correct.

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Twister Feb. 3, 2011 @ 11:38 a.m.

No argument.

But is the US "system" of higher education doing it job?

Is there a vacuum or not?

How has the percentage of qualified applicants for colleges and universities that are rejected varied over time?

How has the percentage of foreign students accepted by US colleges and universities compared to rejected US applicants varied over time?

How good a job does the process of acceptance/rejection do?

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Don Bauder Feb. 3, 2011 @ 4:30 p.m.

Good questions. My guess is that there are answers for most of them. Some questions are subjective. For instance, you ask how many "qualified" students have been rejected in different time frames. How do you define "qualified?" Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 3, 2011 @ 6:48 p.m.

But they are not popular questions.

How does the system of higher education define "qualified?" THAT is the question.

My point in asking these questions is to illustrate the level of denial we are in as a society about the whole issue of how well or how poorly we address the needs and demands of our people for education. There is a whole herd of elephants in the room here, and it is time that we acknowledged them.

The relevance of this line of enquiry to your piece is that if it weren't for those elephants, this problem would go away. Of course this course of enquiry, dis discourse, is an inconvenient one--that's what keeps elephants in the closet. Does anyone smell hypocrisy?

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Don Bauder Feb. 3, 2011 @ 7:40 p.m.

Nobody said the non-profit colleges and universities are flawless. If you want my opinion, we are giving too many people a college education. The result has been lower academic standards. And people with college degrees doing menial work that hardly requires a degree. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 3, 2011 @ 8:23 p.m.

Did I accuse anyone of doing so?

What I am asking is to what degree those flaws, admitted (though I can't name any that have been admitted by those in charge) and denied (covered up by almost the entire academic community) might be causing a vacuum that is being "filled" by the for-profits.

Do our citizens deserve to be protected from degree-granting institutions that certify a level of education that is fraudulent or that does not meet higher academic standards?

But the bottom-line here is whether or not my questions are pertinent or irrelevant to the spirit of your piece, and if so, whether or not anyone is interested in answering them or pointing out any intellectual flaws in them. Another way of putting it might be: "Do the questions contribute to or retard the discussion of the subject?"

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Don Bauder Feb. 4, 2011 @ 10:38 a.m.

The questions you pose are relevant. Let me be blunt: do the for-profit colleges fill a vacuum that should be filled by non-profits institutions? Answer: no. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 4, 2011 @ 12:06 p.m.

The questions you pose are relevant. Let me be blunt: do the for-profit colleges fill a vacuum that should be filled by non-profits institutions? Answer: no.

You're 100% correct.

The SMALL and MINIMAL void the "for profit" schools (and many of the non profits) fill, maybe 5% max, is FAR outweighed by the harm and abuse they cause to the other 95%.

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Don Bauder Feb. 4, 2011 @ 1:48 p.m.

Agreed. The defaults on the debt are enough to show that there is little positive effect created by these for-profit schools. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 4, 2011 @ 12:04 p.m.

Do our citizens deserve to be protected from degree-granting institutions that certify a level of education that is fraudulent or that does not meet higher academic standards?

yes the citizens do.

The problem is DoE is run by the for profit schools and student loan companies-Margret Spellings is a perfect example. They have set up the system for fraud and abuse. Industry stacking the gov oversight agencies with cronies to increase profits. Wall Street is another prime example of these systematic gov oversight failures.

They are milking the middle class and poor for everything they have. And this parasitic draining of the countries wealth is destroying it.

BTW, my appeal to the SCOTUS on education fraud is on the docket for review for February 18th. I highly doubt it will be granted review-but it is there and I am hoping.

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Don Bauder Feb. 4, 2011 @ 1:49 p.m.

I don't think DOE is run by for-profit lackeys, but let's say DOE has been infiltrated at the top by those lackeys. Best, Don Bauder

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Visduh Feb. 3, 2011 @ 8:28 p.m.

Twister asks many questions that need to be asked over and over. There is something wrong with a system of higher education that is inaccessible to many would-be students. These scam colleges would have no prospects for their offerings if the usual private and public schools were open and eager to accept all qualified applicants.

There are various barriers to education. Forty years ago, while pursuing an MBA at SDSU, I found myself in one of those long, slow lines for registration one summer afternoon. Two newly-minted Navy ensigns were behind me in line, resplendent in dress summer white uniforms, and were astounded that they had to stand in line to take a single night-school class that fall. (The whole process required about three hours of standing in line regardless of who you were, and how many classes you wanted to take.) It was no coincidence that soon afterward the infamous National University sprang upon the local scene. (It catered to active-duty military personnel whose fees were paid in full by the Department of Defense.) One of their biggest selling points was that "you only have to register once." That comment was a solar-plexus punch aimed at SDSU and its horse-and-buggy era registration system. Why was SDSU years behind the times? It probably was so popular that nobody really thought that it needed to do better. But a few years later, NU was causing plenty of heartburn for the SDSU president, Day.

These operations such as Bridgepoint cater to the unsophisticated potential student, the one who has little notion of how to apply to a traditional institution, wait for months and only then be told that he/she doesn't quite meet the cut-off, etc., etc. All you need to do is go in, sign up, sign up for a federal loan, and then wait for "classes" to start. Simple, and who's to know that the whole thing is thinly-disguised snake oil?

The answer is for the public and private universities to come out of their ivory towers and seek out those who want college educations. Then they can begin to educate the uneducated in regards to what they need to succeed. But that requires going outside the halls of ivy, meeting and greeting the unwashed, and finally admitting that most of the formalities of college application are just empty gestures and unnecessary. The point is that if traditional schools did the job they should do, these scam schools would have few suckers sign up.

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Don Bauder Feb. 4, 2011 @ 10:45 a.m.

Your final question is a good one: if the traditional non-profit schools were doing their jobs, would the for-profit scams exist? Since I believe that the U.S. is pushing too hard to have a high percentage of young people have a college diploma, I can't say that for-profits exist because non-profits are failing their mission. The for-profits' raison d'etre is the power of telemarketing based on wholly unrealistic dreams. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 4, 2011 @ 12:16 p.m.

Visduh your post was so on target that it should be memorialized in a tattoo on former SDSU President Day's forehead, and also on Stephen Weber's too- as a flaming signpost of gov mediocrity.

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Don Bauder Feb. 4, 2011 @ 1:52 p.m.

Day is gone, Weber is retiring. How about putting the tattoo on the incoming president, whoever he or she may be? Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 4, 2011 @ 3:33 p.m.

I'm getting confuseder and confuseder.

Ok, for-profits are bad.

Big U's have some faults.

Those faults drive the rejects and the impatient (and maybe the bs-ers?) to the for-profits for "degrees" that can be used to defraud employers (non caveat emptor?) about the "graduates'" actual qualifications.

Graduates of non-profits are washing dishes, so degraded has the quality of their degree become.

Since not everybody should have a college degree, just how do "we" separate the sheep from the goats and determine how many degrees are granted to whom?

From whence arose the "unrealistic dreams?" (It couldn'a been all the talk about how you can't get a decent job widout one could'a it?)

Or is there an alternative?

Visduh: "The answer is for the public and private universities to come out of their ivory towers and seek out those who WANT college educations."

A friend of mine at SDSU teaches two classes totaling over 700 "students." And I thought that when my wife was trying to teach a class with over 60 she was overloaded. (BTW, there were 3 out of 60 who could construct a sentence in the English language [most were native speakers], the class was overstocked by about 57.)

I could go back to my first set of questions, but I'll not belabor the obvious importance of understanding ratios and trends and incongruities.

How to tell a university (perfesser, deen, chancylor, or pressident) frum a bureaucratacacy? De latter is concerned primarily with administrative convenience (e.g., the rules for securing state funding), whilst the former (quite literally, the extinct form) is a naive intellectual who wants people who WANT to learn, not just jump (or cheat their way) through hoops for a degree. The main people who have to really be qualified are athletes, who will be granted almost any degree they want, and it will most assuredly get them a job with a successful pyramid-climbing alum.

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Don Bauder Feb. 5, 2011 @ 7:14 a.m.

You didn't even mention one of the most dangerous cancers: the degree to which non-profit universities are dependent upon and beholden to companies. Private sector firms are even determining curricula. Money talks. Why must it nauseate? Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 5, 2011 @ 6:07 p.m.

". . . appeal to the SCOTUS on education fraud is on the docket for review for February 18th . . ." [SP]

I'd like to follow this more closely . . .

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 5, 2011 @ 9:23 p.m.

The chances of cert being accepted are slim and zero-but I at least I got up to the plate and took a few swings.

If you're the poor or middle class you're not going to be getting justice at the SCOTUS-they are heavily biased in favor of gov and Big Business due to the ultra conservative make up of the court.

On student loan issues they have only taken two cases in the last 20 years, Espinosa (2010) and Lockhart (2005)- and both were decided in favor of government and against the poor (big surprise!!).

Thomas rules in favor of the gov 95% of the time. Scalia, Alito and Roberts are not far behind. Kennedy is now the swing vote but he is no Sandar Day O'Connor, not by a long shot.

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Don Bauder Feb. 5, 2011 @ 9:51 p.m.

Scalia, Thomas and Alito are clowns. Roberts is intelligent but is a stooge for big business. Bad court. Best, Don Bauder

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Founder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 5:41 p.m.

Thank GWB and his "Packers" that can't lose, no matter how many times they drop the ball...

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Don Bauder Feb. 5, 2011 @ 9:48 p.m.

We will welcome your posts on the topic. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 5, 2011 @ 6:10 p.m.

". . . mention one of the most dangerous cancers: the degree to which non-profit universities are dependent upon and beholden to companies. Private sector firms are even determining curricula." [DB]

I'd like to follow this more closely too.

How about the Feral Gummint?

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Don Bauder Feb. 5, 2011 @ 9:53 p.m.

Oh yes. Federal grants determine university research to a very depressing degree. As I mentioned on a blog the other day, Eisenhower warned about this in the same speech in which he warned of the military-industrial complex. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 5, 2011 @ 9:39 p.m.

SP: "The chances of cert being accepted are slim and zero-but I at least I got up to the plate and took a few swings."

May be. But the effects of one intransigent act after another pile up toward a critical mass. This is what I mean about how important a box-score is. Even in Egypt, the powerless finally had enough.

"At long last . . . At long last . . ." --Robert Welch

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Don Bauder Feb. 5, 2011 @ 9:55 p.m.

American citizens need to storm the Bastille -- metaphorically, of course. Best, Don Bauder

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nan shartel Feb. 22, 2011 @ 11:43 p.m.

let's just do it for real..i look great in a red beret ;-D

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DX Feb. 5, 2011 @ 10:18 p.m.

It surely is a "win win win win" situation when for profit education executives, Wall Street sharpies, DC lobbyists and the appropriate federal government authorities all enjoying the cake. Icing provided by the SCOTUS, of course.

Justice is now served.

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Don Bauder Feb. 6, 2011 @ 7:25 a.m.

People keep saying the current SCOTUS is a conservative court. It's not conservative in the Adam Smith sense. It is simply a pro-business court. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 6, 2011 @ 3:25 p.m.

Im sorry, you are correct-it is a pro business/gov court.

I need to remember that.

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Don Bauder Feb. 6, 2011 @ 5:22 p.m.

No problem remembering it. You can read about it almost every day. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 6, 2011 @ 3:28 p.m.

It surely is a "win win win win" situation when for profit education executives, Wall Street sharpies, DC lobbyists and the appropriate federal government authorities all enjoying the cake

Execs on Wall Street run the financial agencies, and the execs in the education industry are identical, running DoE- former DoE secretary Margaret Spelling is the best example you could ever have of this incestuous scam.

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Don Bauder Feb. 6, 2011 @ 5:23 p.m.

Spelling is the classic example of what you are talking about. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 6, 2011 @ 5:24 p.m.

One of the great speeches of the century. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 6, 2011 @ 2:51 p.m.

We THE PEOPLE, have the option of petitioning our government for redress of grievances.

To do this effectively, we will have to act as if in exile, as we effectively already are. This means strikes and boycotts, and we can organize them via email. But we must avoid any centralization of power.

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Don Bauder Feb. 6, 2011 @ 5:26 p.m.

The Egyptian revolutionists showed how it's done by email, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 7, 2011 @ 8:26 p.m.

We can do it by sticking to the local economy, and putting real prices on real value.

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Don Bauder Feb. 7, 2011 @ 8:58 p.m.

Good luck matching realistic prices with value. Best, Don Bauder

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bogeball Feb. 7, 2011 @ 9:37 p.m.

Publicly traded companies have obligations to their investors to turn the best possible profit; Capitalism 101.

Ashford University provides a regionally accredited (best kind), Bachelor of Arts degree in four years for a maximum of $50,040 versus an average of about $96,000 at non-for-profit universities.

If it is you considering a degree path then that kind of cost difference should give one pause, don't you think?

<p>www.ashford.edu says that they graduated 8,268 students in 2010, 2% at their traditional campus in Iowa and 98% using their online format.

Senator Harkin's points are well taken and I imagine that the school is making adjustments to improve the drop-out rates since it does not reflect well on them. If the students just stay in school they will come out better for the experience and investment in their education.

Online formats are often the ONLY way working adults can earn their degrees while fully employed and managing children, et al.

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 7, 2011 @ 10:58 p.m.

If the students just stay in school they will come out better for the experience and investment in their education.

By bogeball

The vast majority of the students do NOT graduate and the few that do will NOT be better off with their Ashford University "investment".

The ROI on an Ashford University degree is a huge negative= by a country mile.

That is crazy talk.

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 7 a.m.

As Sen. Harkin points out, Ashford's record to date is pretty poor. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 6:58 a.m.

The test will be whether those degrees are useful in getting jobs, permitting the students to repay the federal government loans. Now, the record is quite poor for the for-profit universities. Best, Don Bauder

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 9:27 p.m.

This argument is by somebody who is unaware of the type of student typically being enrolled at Bridgepoint or by somebody who is kidding themselves. The statistics that Senator Harkin is putting out there seem in line to what I experienced as an enrollment advisor there for 6 months.

Community College is a better place for Tax Payer dollars on students who barely got through High School. If an online version isn't available at CC's then this tax payer isn't interested in paying Clark for a losing program. Bogeball often times if you put in crap you get crap! Bridegpoints numbers prove that.

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bogeball Feb. 8, 2011 @ 1:05 a.m.

It is a 93 year old institution, regionally accredited since 1950 that introduced its online format six years ago. Why would a Bachelor of Arts degree in, say Business Administration with a Specialization in Information Systems, be any less valuable than a similar degree from SDSU?

What data says otherwise?

No disagreement that the issue of folks dropping out relatively quickly and not earning their degrees is serious. However, those able to persevere and earn their degrees must emerge better off, wouldn't you concede?

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 7:03 a.m.

The so-called Ashford is 93 years old only because Bridgepoint bought a tiny college in Iowa that makes up a very small percentage of its enrollment. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 8, 2011 @ 9:09 a.m.

It is a 93 year old institution, regionally accredited since 1950 that introduced its online format six years ago. Why would a Bachelor of Arts degree in, say Business Administration with a Specialization in Information Systems, be any less valuable than a similar degree from SDSU?

=============== LOL.....obviously a Bridgepoint/Ashford plant.

I bet you think/claim a law degree from California Western carrys the exact same value as one from Harvard!!!!!!

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 10:19 p.m.

It's that "93 year old institution" that gives me a real chuckle. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 8, 2011 @ 9:12 a.m.

No disagreement that the issue of folks dropping out relatively quickly and not earning their degrees is serious. However, those able to persevere and earn their degrees must emerge better off, wouldn't you concede?

========== No I would not agree, in fact I would disagree to the largest extent possible.

The COST to obtain a cheap, nearly useless, online Ashford degree is not worth the paper it is printed on, much less the tens of thousands of dollars in tuition and book costs.

The return in so far in the negative it is hard to calulate.

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 10:21 p.m.

The American taxpayer, who provides more than 90% of Bridgepoint's support, may have some thoughts on who is better off. Best, Don Bauder

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 9:30 p.m.

Don Please post that again! Please! Tax payers are simply not aware of this huge scam.

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 9:43 p.m.

Answer to the Bogeballs first question is Reputation. You are kidding yourself on the difference between the two universities.

Answer to the data question. "Drop out rates!? Entrance standards to get into SDSU versus nothing except a HS diploma.

Comment on third statement... you should concede that the type of student making an attempt at university work at Bridgepoint is better served at a community college as an affordable proving ground particularly on the tax payer dime.

Go see your doctor because the Kool Aid you have drank is burping up into the faces of mindful tax payers concerned about what most should call legalized FRAUD!

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Visduh Feb. 8, 2011 @ 11:30 a.m.

I do not agree that an online format is the only way that a person who is employed and/or caring for children can earn a degree. Generations of employed parents have managed it in a conventional classroom setting on a part-time basis. Let nobody forget that it is one's fellow students who are part of the experience, and that doing it solo is just not the same. On-line study is canned study and is about as satisfying as eating cold beans from a can compared to something freshly prepared and hot at the table.

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 10:23 p.m.

I agree: online studying is not the only way to go -- particularly since it needs improvement. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 8, 2011 @ 3:49 p.m.

If they offered a BS degree in bs, it might be worth the money--if one's life-goal to to defraud one's way to riches.

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 10:24 p.m.

I wish I had thought of that: a BS in bs. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 8, 2011 @ 3:53 p.m.

Re: Bauder's comment on real prices . . .

It's a matter of willing buyers and sellers. If they're not willing to pay your price, don't sell, and if the price isn't low enough, don't buy. Period.

Teeter-totter capitalism.

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Don Bauder Feb. 8, 2011 @ 10:26 p.m.

The quality of the product or service, and the urgency of the buyer and/or seller to make a deal, play a role, too. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 8, 2011 @ 11:20 p.m.

"The quality of the product or service, and the urgency of the buyer and/or seller to make a deal, play a role, too." DB

Certainly. They are components of willingness.

But URGENCY, that is quite a different matter. That can put the buyer or the seller over a barrel--that is all about NEED, and its hierarchy. If you need a tourniquet, it's pretty high on the scale. If you need a gold toilet-seat--well, THAT can be pretty high on the scale too.

It's all about what you grumble about.

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 7:19 a.m.

If you are raking in a billion dollars a year, as some hedge fund operators are, a gold toilet seat may be high on your priority list. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 8, 2011 @ 11:24 p.m.

Pardon the Freudian stammer: "If they offered a BS degree in bs, it might be worth the money--if one's life-goal to to defraud one's way to riches."

I meant ". . . life-goal IS to defraud . . ."

But seriously, folks--a BA? Bah!

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 7:21 a.m.

I have an MS. Should I call myself MS Don Bauder? Best, Don Bauder

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bogeball Feb. 9, 2011 @ 12:32 a.m.

Enjoy all the cracks you want, but the truth is that there is indeed a place for schools that can provide quality education via online convenience. There are too many under-educated adults in America with families to feed while working full time that do not have the luxury of being able to drive to a campus for set hours. I notice that USC and other traditional schools are offering such options. It's the future of education for adults. And don't tell me that the thousands of annual graduates are unemployed or working at the local convenience store because their degrees are worthless. Does the system need improvement? You bet, but it is here to stay and should only evolve in a positive path for all parties.

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 8:01 a.m.

In looking at for-profit colleges, we are discussing the quality of online education, not online education itself. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 9, 2011 @ 8:13 a.m.

Enjoy all the cracks you want, but the truth is that there is indeed a place for schools that can provide quality education via online convenience.

Well bogeball/aka Bridgepoint mouth piece, it comes down to-like ALL things- value.

What are you getting for your (or I should say taxpayers because they front the $$ loan money) buck from this dimploma mill???? Does the cost justify the means. It absolutely does not.

The value you get from an over priced degree from a diploma mill, for profit school is NOT worth the price you pay in tuition, it is that simple.

We won't even go into the cost to taxpayers from the defaults on the 80%-90% of students who drop out and have no means to pay back the taxpayer backed student loans of an over priced, useless college classes that a community college can give for $200 a class.

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 2:47 p.m.

Yes, the money comes from taxpayers, and they (we) have a right to know if it is money well spent. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 9, 2011 @ 8:14 a.m.

And don't tell me that the thousands of annual graduates are unemployed or working at the local convenience store because their degrees are worthless.

Yes, for Bridgepoint and other dimploma mills, that is exactly what is going on.

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 2:45 p.m.

Just listen to Sen. Harkin on the point. Best, Don Bauder

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 9:49 p.m.

Bogeball tax payers are paying for this and the type of student who considers Bridgepoint in most cases can't get into a regular school. It is inline with the drop out rates that Harkin is calling BPI to the table on.

The answer is Community College for them as a proving ground. If you are so certain that BPI's method has value do it on somebody elses dime, without Tax payer funded programs. I for one would love to see Clark make a go of that. He would never do it because he would go broke. He has the drop out rate to prove it.

I am unwilling as a taxpayer to pay for this system you are saying is here to say. Welcome to the Tea party Movement!

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Twister Feb. 9, 2011 @ 7:21 a.m.

I'm an increasingly reluctant fan of universities, period. But the evidence is clear that the for-profits are even more fraudulent money-grubbers than the Big Privates and the Big States.

Certification itself is bs--having a degree has increasingly meant less and less about what one actually can do, but the for-profits are far worse than the non-profits in selling diplomas.

I get a lot of my education on-line, via email and otherwise, but getting a diploma on-line, especially for Big Bucks, is in the same category as getting one by mail.

What we need is a network of brethren who will help each other because it is our duty as citizens of the world, not an even more fraudulent pickpocket teaching us how to pick the pockets of others. That network needs to shift from bs to demonstration of ABILITY, and getting the word around about how who does it best. For example, we all know Sully is a damned good pilot.

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 9:19 a.m.

Provocative points. Education at the non-profits has many flaws -- particularly, the cozy relationship with big business that often stifles free expression of nagging social problems. Best, Don Bauder

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nofxjoey10 Feb. 9, 2011 @ 2:52 p.m.

I can't belive that our government is giving away loans for education to online companies for second rat education,, When these companies and making TONS of money of the taxpayers ...

This company alone has made more than 700 percent the profit it did only 7years ago off the taxpayers pocket book.. And then Pay there Enrollment Advisers six figures to sell students on buying the courses so that "bridgepoint" can make record profits..

No person that is Call and Enrollment Advisor should be selling Education off the coat tails of it's own people Should be making $100,000 Plus dollars..

And we the taxpayers shouldn't be making people filthy rich Off Our Tax Dollars.. You do not see San Diego state Universty making record profit of it's students,Or UCSD, or any college or university for that matter.. Infact they are cutting classes and giving Teachers less work days cause of Lack of funding and here these Colleges are making Rediculios amount of money off WE THE PEOPLE.. Not right at all.. Not to mention are employers going to hire a person with an Online degree before they Hire a Person ACTUALLY went to Class and Really did the work them selves and really worked hard for there Degree,, " I THINK NOT".. How do you even know that that peson online is the one who did the work and really eraned that Degree.. You don't that is another problem..

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bogeball Feb. 9, 2011 @ 10:16 p.m.

Based on your grammar, punctuation, and poor spelling, may I suggest that you enter into a reputable institution for classes to address these flaws? Have a nice drive to your local Junior College. Don't be tardy since that could hurt your grade.

At least your writing prowess matches your flawed representation of what you portray as being factual.

See how strong this country could be if all of us had a quality education?

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 10, 2011 @ 9:06 a.m.

LOL..this coming from a Bridgepopint/Ashford flunky-classic!

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bogeball Feb. 22, 2011 @ 10:25 p.m.

Flunky? This from someone who can barely put a sentence together? Grab a mirror, bro.

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Don Bauder Feb. 9, 2011 @ 6:54 p.m.

Yes, we taxpayers are getting taken by the for-profit colleges. But it appears to be the Republicans who are standing up for those picking our pockets. And the Republicans say they are against deficits. Frankly, I think both parties have sold out. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 9, 2011 @ 9:45 p.m.

There is NO difference between Dems and Repugs, two different sides of the same coin.

They are both bought and paid for with speical interest money.

There are 40K Plus lobbyists on Capitol Hill, yet only 535 in the Congress.

40% of the bills submitted in the Congress, and 60% of the bills passed, are WRITTEN by special interest groups and their lobbyists. That is outraguous.

As I say, the law today is for sale to the highest bidder, like all other banana republics.

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bogeball Feb. 9, 2011 @ 10:10 p.m.

You do realize that 'spell checkers' exist in 2011, right?

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Don Bauder Feb. 10, 2011 @ 6:34 a.m.

Aren't they called spel chekkurs? Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 10, 2011 @ 9:04 a.m.

Internet Explorer does nto have spell check, and if I have some/many typos i dont care. I am nto writing a term paper or SCOTUS legal brief.

(typos included for irony!)

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bogeball Feb. 22, 2011 @ 10:18 p.m.

Ms. Grant, I suppose only a classy dame like yourself would notice.

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nan shartel Feb. 22, 2011 @ 11:48 p.m.

a poor speeler like me would 2 bogeball...but i would just consider the source

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Don Bauder Feb. 10, 2011 @ 6:33 a.m.

Unfortunately, I can't disagree with you. Best, Don Bauder

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bogeball Feb. 10, 2011 @ 8:14 p.m.

Tis consistently true in modern American politics.

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Don Bauder Feb. 11, 2011 @ 7:03 a.m.

I repeat a statement I have made before, but I will repeat: Money talks, but why must it nauseate? Best, Don Bauder

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 17, 2011 @ 2:06 p.m.

Every non-profit school gets tax payers dollars in the form of subsidizes... how is that any different considering that it costs more to go to a state school if you take away the subsidizes?

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 17, 2011 @ 7:39 p.m.

Every non-profit school gets tax payers dollars in the form of subsidizes... how is that any different considering that it costs more to go to a state school if you take away the subsidizes?

==================== Yes, state schools get subsidizes, take that away and they are STILL 1/4 of the cost of this diploma mill.

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 18, 2011 @ 11:20 a.m.

You obviously do not know any of the facts. Lets talk numbers... so you think that the tuition cost of Ashford (about 11,000) per year is 4x greater then say Colorado State? That would mean the cost of Colorado State is 2,750 per year WITHOUT subsidizes? The truth is that an out of state student pays 14,000 per year WITH subsidizes (collegesource.org). So here is the truth... you are wrong and you have no idea what you are talking about.

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Twister Feb. 10, 2011 @ 10:38 p.m.

Mother's little helpers grow up to debate with fallacies, straw-man and otherwise. See-saws, sandboxes, and mud-puddles are too advanced for such intellectual retards, though they like to claim intellectual superiority rather than demonstrate it. When they don't like a logical challenge, they try looking over your shoulder or saying your shoelace is untied or some other infantile ploy to bog down the real discussion. Ignore them. Such playpen politics is a waste of everybody's time.

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Don Bauder Feb. 11, 2011 @ 7:09 a.m.

You are describing what lawyers do for a living. Best, Don Bauder

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MsGrant Feb. 11, 2011 @ 7:59 a.m.

"On July 1, new regulations are scheduled to go into effect. One would bar schools from paying recruiters according to how many students they enroll" - maybe when this practice ceases, Bridgepoint will be forced to hire their drop-outs. Reminds me of the mortgage industry.

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Don Bauder Feb. 11, 2011 @ 10:50 a.m.

Bridgepoint has been under investigation of DOE for a long time because of this practice. I don't know that it is hiring back its telemarketers. Best, Don Bauder

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 10:07 p.m.

Absolutely right!!! And many of the adisors at BPI when I was there were unemployed Mortgage Brokers who brought there slick habits from the old job to there new job! IMAGINE THAT!

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Twister Feb. 15, 2011 @ 1:13 p.m.

Let us not forget that the issue is fraud and pickpocketing on steroids, SOP for the government-business complex.

It should be about how the best of us help facilitate the understanding of the rest of us. So it's not that the Internet and email have no place in this complex process, it's whether or not fraud is involved.

MIT posts its courses, free for anybody to glean from. Discussion boards and listservs and other forms of social media have a powerful potential that is only beginning to be tapped. Traditional universities should lead, not follow, and if for-profits beat them to it, let's hope that competition will cull out the worst of the pickpockets.

For example, look at the value of this interaction right here on the Bauder blog--I don't know about the rest, but I have learned plenty and my understanding of a lot of things has been greatly facilitated by Don and those who give of their time and their life experience to share . . . But even so, this site has great unrealized potential that lies dormant. Why?

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Don Bauder Feb. 15, 2011 @ 8:32 p.m.

We hope that the site ultimately realizes its potential. One problem is that I turn 75 in May. I already do a weekly column that takes a lot of research. Then I post things on the blog, averaging at least one a day, I suspect. And I respond to those who comment both on columns and the blog. I am not complaining. I wouldn't do it if I didn't enjoy it. I'm simply offering one reason why we haven't realized full potential. Another reason is that there is a helluva lot of competition out there. There are a lot of very, very smart bloggers and wisdom-filled blog sites. That's a problem that daily newspapers have. Best, Don Bauder

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 17, 2011 @ 1:33 p.m.

F the Department of Education... your just pissed because all your non-profit schools (like state schools) dont get all the government help they used to. Here is the logic: because Bridgepoint makes lots of money and the students dont always go through the program we should be pissed and cry. Has the writer of this article ever been to Community College where a class goes from 45 students to 25 in two weeks of classes? "Well.. yes but Community College is less money and so it does not cost the student a default status" -- EXCEPT THAT THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE IS SUBSIDIZED BY THE GOVERNEMNT WITH TAX PAYERS DOLLARS! Pick your poison! Dont cry just cause someone can make a buck and actually help people get an education at the same time.

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Don Bauder Feb. 17, 2011 @ 5:42 p.m.

Since Bridgepoint relies on the federal government for more than 90% of its revenue (that includes those in the military it recruits), I don't think the company can be cited as a great example of capitalism in action. Best, Don Bauder

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 18, 2011 @ 4:07 p.m.

We the tax payers actually pay for people in non-profit state schools through BOTH student loans and subsidizes. All I am saying is that there is no difference. Well... there is one difference Bridgepoint employs like 5,000 people (third in San Diego)... but who is counting. And I did not even mention capitalism in my post. If you are speaking in reference to my name then that is simply because I think people should have the choice to make money... even Bridgepoint. And in your opinion what is a good example? Let me guess, do you think the government is a good example of capitalism in action? Taking lots of money and giving to pork spending accounts and false pension plans? Bridgepoint is a perfect example of capitalism, even though that was not my point.

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 18, 2011 @ 5:22 p.m.

We the tax payers actually pay for people in non-profit state schools through BOTH student loans and subsidizes. All I am saying is that there is no difference.

No, there are major differences.

1) unqualified students are ot accepted at CSU or UC schools 2) Most graduate CSU or UC 3) Public schools, especially here on the graduate level are subsidized next to nothing today, only undergrad 4) the education you receive actually has value at a public school, UC, CSU and even an AA from a CC. Not so at diploma mills like Bridgepoint

I will repeat, the SMALL, next to NOTHING value these diploma mills give is outweighed 10K to 1 harm and financial damage they do to the student and taxpayers. . . . Bridgepoint is a perfect example of capitalism, ================ No it is not-it is in fact the wrost case and it is not even capitalism, it is communism. They are defrauding the taxpayers through the student loan system. The default rate-the true default rate not the 2 year co hort rate the DoE uses-is over 75% at diploma mills like Bridgepoint. You cannot con me straw man, I know this stuff inside out, more than you and more than about 99.999999999999% of Americans.

You want the true drfault rates on a diploma mills like Bridgepoint, Goggle Erin Dillon at Education Sector in DC, read her research. . . . I think people should have the choice to make money... even Bridgepoint. ============= LOL @ "make money"..yeah right. I bet you think Bernie Madoff and Enron were just "making money" too.......Fraud is not "making money", it is scamming.

You would fit in real good with the public employee unions who claim that GED employees are worth $200K comp packages......

You are for sure a Bridgepoint sock puppet, there is no doubt about that.

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 23, 2011 @ 10:19 a.m.

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. My stats are from the federal government your are from fantastical ideas that make you sound like you know what you are talking about. ALLLLLLLLLLL schools are ripping off students man. No education is worth that much!!! Did you not read the words "All I am saying is that there is no difference". You really WANT me to be a puppet but I have news, you are the one that sounds like a puppet. And I should rephrase my statement earlier because you are right. I do not think that Bridgepoint is a good example of capitalism... what I mean to say is that it is the consequence of capitalism. I do not agree with Enron or others of the like but I do like capitalism and unfortunatly some companies take it to the extreme. In saying that, I will take free market/capitalism and bridgepoint any day over whatever system you abide by. THAT is why it is a perfect example.

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 23, 2011 @ 12:08 p.m.

And I should rephrase my statement earlier because you are right. I do not think that Bridgepoint is a good example of capitalism...

OK, now we're getting somewhere!

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 10 p.m.

We the tax payer front the money for both but for those misguided students who sign up at BPI who really belong in CC as a more affordable option. They will owe much more and likely default for a much higher rate.

I would respect your argument more if BPI was borrowing there own money and not using Tax payer dollars in this pissing contest.

The Tea Party will attack this!

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 17, 2011 @ 7:37 p.m.

F the Department of Education... your just pissed because all your non-profit schools (like state schools) dont get all the government help they used to. ..... Dont cry just cause someone can make a buck and actually help people get an education at the same time.

Capitalism_is_cool 1

I have to laugh at this clowns grammar, and it is obvious the clown is a Bridgepoint student;

"...YOUR just pissed..."

Hey clown did they ever teach you the difference between "your" and "you're" in 5th grade???

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Russ Lewis Feb. 18, 2011 @ 4:17 a.m.

"I have to laugh at this clowns grammar..." "...YOUR just pissed...

"Hey clown did they ever teach you the difference between 'your' and 'you're' in 5th grade???"

Mr. Puppy, esq., please...you are the second-to-last person who ought to be laughing at other people's writing skills, unless you want your comments marked up in red and handed back; it's usually a bad idea to find fault with the fault finders. But I suppose it's a very good thing that you do enjoy the free entertainment, as I'm sure Don would agree. (The very, very last: Fumbler.)

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Don Bauder Feb. 18, 2011 @ 7:41 a.m.

We haven't heard from Fumber in so long. Do you think he is still chewing on that grass that he was obsessed with? Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 18, 2011 @ 1:40 p.m.

We haven't heard from Fumber in so long.

Fumbler got booted off.

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nan shartel Feb. 22, 2011 @ 7:04 a.m.

uh oh...now i'm really scared russl ~~yikes~~ cause i resemble that remark...i can't speel worth a ding dang!!!

;-D

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Don Bauder Feb. 18, 2011 @ 7:07 a.m.

It isn't just Bridgepoint students stumbling over grammar. I had people working for me with Master's degrees in journalism from Columbia who made similar mistakes. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 18, 2011 @ 1:46 p.m.

It isn't just Bridgepoint students stumbling over grammar. I had people working for me with Master's degrees in journalism from Columbia who made similar mistakes.

That is why the blue chip, white shoe law firms have numerous proof readers employed-that is their only job, proof reading, so there are no typos.

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 18, 2011 @ 8:31 a.m.

I love people like you... miss the whole point of the post because I messed up one thing. Actually, I am an officer and civil engineer for the U.S. NAVY I have an architecture degree which is something Bridgepoint probably does not offer. You mistake my caring about people writing, in my opinion, misleading articles for caring about Bridgepoint. Three people "commented" on what I said without actually commenting on what I said... YOU'RE part of that awesome club. Why don't you respond now or did I spell something wrong?

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Don Bauder Feb. 18, 2011 @ 1 p.m.

Are you talking about me or SurfPuppy? I believe I responded appropriately to your post about capitalism. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 19, 2011 @ 10:49 a.m.

OK. I'll let SurfPup answer. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 18, 2011 @ 1:39 p.m.

YOU'RE part of that awesome club. Why don't you respond now or did I spell something wrong?

Come on, that was classic, I had to call you on it.

But the fact is you're (oh man , almost made the same mistake!) a sock puppet/gimmick account/straw man for Bridgepoint, I know that much!

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Capitalism_is_cool Feb. 18, 2011 @ 3:50 p.m.

Yea a sock puppet said F the Department of Education... Once again you did not respond to what I said just try and cut me down. Even if I was a puppet I am still right.

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Don Bauder Feb. 19, 2011 @ 10:52 a.m.

I'm sure sock puppets have lots of supporters who believe they are right. Best, Don Bauder

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nan shartel Feb. 22, 2011 @ 11:50 p.m.

there r sock puppets....then there r sock puppets eh

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Don Bauder Feb. 19, 2011 @ 10:51 a.m.

SurfPuppy the bloodhound says he can sniff out sock puppets. Best, Don Bauder

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jham88 May 6, 2011 @ 10:05 p.m.

Ok so in your capacity I am assuming you have no experience in dealing with the type of student applicant that BPI enrollment advisors are coaching into attending university classes.

You ought to do it sometime and consider what is really going on with Tax Payer money. It would require you to leave your current Tax Payer funded postiion with our Navy Department but still you might understand some of our concerns better.

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Twister Feb. 21, 2011 @ 4:42 p.m.

Re: 94

So, you're a couple of years older than I--so I dig, dig? I wasn't complaining about the quality or quality of YOUR work, I was complaining about the quality of the Reader setup and the wasting of my time with trivia about punch-u-ashun and speling. Inane shavetails can be ignored.

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Don Bauder Feb. 21, 2011 @ 9:41 p.m.

It's spelled punkchewation. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 21, 2011 @ 4:48 p.m.

The shavetail failed to catch another of SP's typoes. Keel-haul 'im!

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 21, 2011 @ 6:47 p.m.

The shavetail failed to catch another of SP's typoes.

LOL...I want to download the IE8 spell check (why MS doesn't include is is typical of MS!!!) but I am scared of getting malware/spyware and an invasion of privacy.

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Don Bauder Feb. 21, 2011 @ 9:44 p.m.

I don't think a spell checker is invading your privacy. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 21, 2011 @ 9:42 p.m.

SP make a typo? Say it ain't so! Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 22, 2011 @ 10:56 p.m.

SurfPup, sometimes you're not perfect WITH spell check. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 22, 2011 @ 2:41 p.m.

Ok, so back to the subgect.

  1. Thar's more than one way to git edgycated.

  2. The higher in the hierarchy one's alma mater and degree the more intelligent one is presumed to be. This is gonna cost somebody big bucks.

  3. The presumption that that kind of “investment” is going to pay off big enough to get the “student” out of debt before retirement is questionable.

  4. If the student gets competence along with the piece of paper, she (or he) MIGHT get lucky, but one thing is for certain, the loan shark can’t lose. If the paper doesn’t translate into big bucks, the student/sucker is on the hook for a long time.

  5. “Accreditation” MAY mean something, or it might have been bought.

  6. One old-fashioned way to get ahead in the world is to start sweeping floors and work one’s self up to The Top. That requires enough intelligence to actually learn how to PERFORM, or how to screw the suckers out of anything they can beg, borrow, or steal.

  7. One thing universities sometimes get you is CONTACTS, otherwise known as the inwykiwyb method.

  8. All life experience, including formal “training,” is educational.

  9. If you think you’re gonna get something for nothing, you’re going to have to steal it.

  10. That is how it’s done.

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 22, 2011 @ 4:57 p.m.

Twister-excellent Top ten.......you were on the money.

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Twister Feb. 22, 2011 @ 3 p.m.

Re 95:

I don't know how many times I've found your pieces well worth responding to, but it probably gets 99.999% of my effort. I don't know where all these other "very, very smart bloggers and wisdom-filled blog sites" are, and they certainly don't respond to responders. It's damned near humanly impossible--but hey, I'm not incinerating that you are inhuman, only the best in the business. And the Reader should compensate you accordingly. They could do even better if they led with your pieces or at least stuck your name on what passes for a masthead with links to both your essays and blogs, AND if they set up their machine to provide email notification to responders when their posts have been responded to. That might provide some continuity and coherence to the vital subjects at hand, even when "contributors" pee in the play-pen.

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Don Bauder Feb. 22, 2011 @ 10:59 p.m.

Answer to Twister: And if you're going to steal, steal big. And have a battery of well-paid lawyers with influence over judges and regulators. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 22, 2011 @ 11:01 p.m.

Answer to SurfPup: yes, Twister nailed it. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Feb. 22, 2011 @ 11:05 p.m.

Response to Twister's 3 pm post: Those are all matters that you will have to take up with the management. I appreciate your thoughtfulness, of course. Best, Don Bauder

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Twister Feb. 26, 2011 @ 9 p.m.

Re: 137

They'd better be reading your pieces; I presume they've heard of the primacy of the feedback loop. If not, they'll need to hire someone who has and knows what it means. I suspect they would not pay my rate--a pitiful percentage of actual gains, aka, PERFORMANCE pay.

For starters, they need to get rid of this ridiculous "Reply" system that scrunches up the print into ten-character wide colums. Hilarious. (Nothing to do with the SOS.)

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Don Bauder Feb. 26, 2011 @ 9:39 p.m.

In addition, the responses often wind up where they don't belong. So we get some non sequiturs. I understand the Reader is working on this. Best, Don Bauder

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