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07.21 Greta Thunberg: ‘They see us as a threat because we’re having an impact’ [We love a sane smarty-pants! Trump, you won't understand any of this, so just go off and tweet or chant, or whatever...]

07.20 Until Emissions Drop, Nothing Has Been Accomplished: The Climate Resistance Handbook Is Here. [Trump can't be bothered as the world turns into a large cinder. His laser focus is on personal greed.]

07.20 Cargo ships are emitting boatloads of carbon, and nobody wants to take the blame [1:19 video; Governments must commission to fight deadly shipping emissions, previously omitted in climate summit agreements....]

07.20 Babies Born Near Oil and Gas Wells Are Up to 70% More Likely to Have Congenital Heart Defects, New Study Shows

07.20 Giving 'Upper Hand to Corporate Polluters,' EPA Drops Surprise Inspections

07.20 With Petition to Congress, 100,000+ People Demand Green New Deal 'That Fixes Our Food System' [Realtime proactive response to reality—now and threatening—doesn't get attention in this greed focused administration]

07.19 Trump administration won't ban pesticide tied to childhood brain damage [There is no truth to the persistent rumor that chlorpyrifos pesticide was heavily used at Trump's childhood home in Queens]

07.19 'Unprecedented' Decline of Plants and Animals as Global 'Red List' Reveals Nearly One-Third of Assessed Species Under Threat

07.17 ‘Off-the-charts’ heat to affect millions in U.S. in coming decades

07.17 Planned Parenthood president Leana Wen forced out by board [Given that states have lost abortion rights on political grounds recently, Wen's philosophical approach to protect abortion rights based on ‘health care’ was smarter – therefore it was that smarter strategy that was killed at the secret meeting.]

07.17 Billions of air pollution particles found in hearts of city dwellers

07.17 What is happening in America's Cancertown is tragic, immoral and evil [Niggardly white government policies could change to produce better students, better jobs and net revenue instead of costs. But it seems they enjoy more cruelty—like Trump.]

07.16 US aid cuts to UN agency will hurt vulnerable women and children, critics say

07.16 Trump abortion restrictions in effect for taxpayer-funded clinics

07.15 The response to DRC’s Ebola crisis isn’t working. Here’s what we need to do

07.15 Extinction Rebellion protests block traffic in five UK cities [Non-corporate human animals make their annoying bleating sounds...]

07.14 A Glacier the Size of Florida Is Becoming Unstable. It Has Dire Implications for Global Sea Levels [The willfully ignorant needn't read more, Trump]

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07.19 Fox News’s star names excuse the inexcusable after Trump's latest racist attack

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07.21 Of course Donald Trump is a racist – and his Wall Street enablers know it

07.21 A court ruled it was legal for guards to strip search female inmates and force them to remove their tampons in front of male officers for a 'training exercise' [The frequency and degree of immorality and degradation being reported in the media is very disturbing, as if society has been reprogrammed overnight to be more like the worst behavior of Nazi Germany]

07.21 THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY IS GETTING CRUSHED IN FUNDRAISING: “THEY NEED TO GET THEIR SHIT TOGETHER” [Since so-called moderate Democrats will prostitute themselves in many conceivable ways (offering that special quid pro quo) they have effectively become competitively ANTI-PUBLIC, like Republicans. Whereas progressive Democrats must promise not to take corporate donations at all as an effective litmus-test. The DNC refuses to raise funds for moderate and progressives separately, and thus donations fall short. Which is it to be: 1) Will the DNC change? or 2) Must progressive Democrats become corporate whores too? or 3) Maybe you don't need corporate contributions at all if your policies are fantastic?]

07.21 State and Local Taxes Are Worsening Inequality

07.21 State and Local Taxes Are Worsening Inequality

07.21 We're no longer in Brave New World. We're back in 1984. [1:35 video; Our despicable President is at it again]

07.21 BALTIMORE'S FILTHIEST HOODS [7:38 video. Ask your governments, why are our cities so much worse than Europe's? Why is our healthcare worse and so much more expensive? And why are our Billionaires so much richer? Ask if those results of bad government are all related, and why? Are they all caused by a power-elite with greed-obsessed immorality?]

07.21 Nancy Pelosi's Dem Socialist Challenger Shahid Buttar: "We're Gonna Win" | Full Interview [5:43 video]

07.21 Jon Stewart goes viral excoriating Rand Paul after blocking vote [9:02 video]

07.21 Nicolle Wallace Refuses to Broadcast Trump Live [5:43 video]

07.21 Sassy Bernie Sanders Sh*ts on Jeff Bezos on His Home Turf... Numerous Times [17:22 video]

07.20 Puerto Rico: top US politicians join chorus calling for governor's resignation

07.20 Fact check: Trump says Puerto Rico got $92 billion. They've seen only a fraction [If he opens his mouth, Trump's lying.]

07.20 "Trump Says Go Home, Ilhan's Community Says Welcome Home": Rep. Omar Greeted With Cheers of Love and Support in Return to Minnesota

07.20 WATCH: Amid Extreme Anti-Refugee Push, Trump Displays Neither Interest Nor Knowledge of Asylum Seekers' Plight in Oval Office Meeting

07.20 Trump Denies Being at North Carolina Rally [Not sure if Trump supporters 'get' satire, but here goes....]

07.19 Are progressives working on a climate plan for 2021? You bet.

07.19 House Democrats demand Hope Hicks clarify testimony after Cohen document dump

07.19 The 51 most outrageous lines from Donald Trump's repugnant North Carolina rally

07.19 The Real Meaning of ‘Send Her Back!’

07.18 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Breaking up Homeland Security

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07.19 UN urged to act over 'purge' of Turkey's lawyers by Erdogan

07.19 DOJ Releases Strong Evidence of Trump’s Campaign Finance Violations But No Explanation of No Charges [The statement]

High Crimes vs. Human Rights

07.19 Conscientious objectors of first world war – their untold tales [The record proves they were morally right by avoiding violent early deaths of their cousins and themselves]

Economics & Corrupt Capitalism

07.18 Corporate tax cuts blocked at least 15,000 affordable homes in California. Here’s how

International & Futurism

07.21 Millions face hardship as Zimbabwe comes close to ‘meltdown’

07.21 Spain set for socialist-led government after Iglesias deal [Some loaded drama going on here...]

07.20 US to deploy troops to Saudi Arabia in face of 'credible' regional threats [Working with Osama bin Laden's godfathers, Trump wants to profit like Erik Prince (for-profit education secretary Betsy DeVos' brother) of Blackwater infamy (hurriedly renamed ‘Academi’), the U.S. taxpayer to pay inflated costs while Trump siphons off long-term emolument largesse]

07.20 Iran on 'dangerous path' with seizure of Stena Impero, says UK [Which is this, a tit or a tat?]

07.20 'Dark satanic mills': Tony Abbott continues his crusade against wind turbines [Too much CO2 air pollution makes you stupid, and turns your country into an “Idiocracy” (1:36 video clip)]

07.20 Bolsonaro declares 'the Amazon is ours' and calls deforestation data 'lies' [Lazy and willfully stupid whenever it serves his purpose, just like Trump. “And the rest of you can all go to hell.” Again, just like Trump. Has your country turned into an “Idiocracy”? (1:36 video clip)]

07.19 U.N.'s Bachelet says Congresswomen opposing Trump are 'fantastic'

07.19 Iran makes 'substantial' nuclear offer in return for US lifting sanctions [Was barbaric Saudi Arabia—whose citizens were more involved in the 9-11 attacks—the wrong ally all along?]

07.19 “The Task Ahead Is Enormous, and There Is Not Much Time” [Read this and learn. Or read Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) | Twitter and/or President Trump (@POTUS) | Twitter. Are you serious? Or are you in hideously criminal denial?]

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  Print view: Kaplan University Ripping Off Poor Students for Profit
BUSINESS TERRORISM:

Kaplan University Ripping Off Poor Students for Profit

Despicable scheme takes predatory advantage of altruistic Federal student loan program.

by Stephen Lendman
Wednesday, 22 September 2010
As President Coolidge said, "The business of America is business." Kaplan makes money the old-fashioned way. They steal it from unsuspecting poor and minority students, their welfare and futures wrecked from the experience.

Like the old "Let's Fall in Love" lyrics: Bankers do it. Insurers do it. Even (privatized) universities with poor students do it. They steal and get away with it, a Danny Weil August 18 Daily Censored article titled, "Whistleblower Exposes How Kaplan University Cheats Low-Income Minority students and the Washington Post (parent company) Benefits." More on it below.

Kaplan calls itself "an institution of higher learning dedicated to providing innovative undergraduate, graduate, and continuing professional education. Our programs foster student learning with opportunities to launch, enhance, or change careers in today's diverse global society. The University is committed to general education, a student-centered service and approach, and applied scholarship in a practical (online or campus) environment."

It's part of Kaplan Higher Education Corp., part of Kaplan, Inc., a subsidiary of The Washington Post Company, producing over half of its revenue and profits - its real commitment, not students.

The web site RipoffReport.com lists first named only victims of "scams, consumer complaints, and frauds."

Elma from Washington reported her experience after attending Kaplan's Legal Studies program. In December 2008, she said:

"I have to concur with" other complaints. "Kaplan's professionalism only extends as far as their sales training goes. They are not (academically) minded, but purely monetarily motivated - hence the magic number of $12,000," a notification saying "you are $12,000 in the arrears on your tuition, therefore we will be blocking you from classes."

The Veterans Administration (VA) paid Elma's tuition. They intervened. Kaplan retracted its statement, then told the VA she was blocked for not filling out a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

In fact, they're voluntary, and since the VA paid Elma's full tuition, it wasn't needed. She explained further, saying:

Here's why they require it - "Because as (others encountered), they use your information to obtain monies that (students) don't see - but will be responsible for."

Alma challenged them and involved the Department of Education. Her access no longer was blocked. At issue is why it was in the first place. While at Kaplan, she "had nothing but problems," including:

  • discrimination by instructors; she complained, was transferred to another one who was uncertified by the Kentucky Bar Association, lying by claiming otherwise;
  • complaining about any Kaplan educational experience is fruitless; "it's a waste of time;" no matter how justified, it won't "go in your favor....;"
  • "Kaplan also takes advantage of minorities and low income" students, getting them hugely in debt, delivering less than they promise, sometimes nothing, and earning large profits as a result;
  • required texts often arrived late, forcing students to play catchup; and
  • "Kaplan advertises they cater to working adults, (but) they treat (them like) we are ignorant or juvenile."

Alma said Kaplan should be sued and put out of business for not delivering on promises, defrauding students for profit.

In January 2009, Cary (from North Carolina) also said "Kaplan should be put out of business." Two terms from graduating, he was told he owed $7,000. He thought his tuition was subsidized. Apparently it was exhausted, but Kaplan hadn't told him earlier, and "They never offered any other type of financial aid other than alternative loans" he wouldn't use. Angrily he accused them of operating like Enron and Worldcom, scamming students for profit. "We must fight them back," he said, "because we have worked too damn hard for (our) education!!!"

In October 2006, Carrie (from Illinois) called Kaplan's Boca Raton, FL facility a "scam school." It promised she'd get no unexpected bills, have a student loan of around $26,000, and be able to complete her education trouble-free. Not so.

After two terms, she got a letter saying she was $1,851 in arrears to be satisfied before she could continue her course work. When inquiring why she owed money, she was told her aid only covered three classes per quarter, and she owed for the last two terms. Yet her advisor and financial aid information assured her everything was in order, her scholarship covering the extra classes.

Nonetheless, the harassment continued. The initial arrears more than doubled to $3,975. When she mentioned her scholarship aid, she was told her account said nothing about it. After struggling in vain for straight answers, she got an email stating:

"Dear Kaplan University Student,

The end of the term is approaching and your account is severely past due. (If it's) not brought current by the end of the term, a block will be placed on your account. You will not be able to continue into your next term until the past due balance is paid in full."

What happened to her scholarships she asked? Why weren't they applied to her account? Like others, she was scammed, saying:

"If anyone at all has a class action lawsuit or is thinking of getting one started, PLEASE contact me. I have the names of several other students (who've) been down this very road and are willing to be part of this as well!"

Recruiters also "scolded and mocked them for being hesitant to take out government-subsidized loans" for tuition.

On August 6, 2010, Chronicle.com writer Goldie Blumenstyk headlined, "Kaplan Suspends Enrollment at Campuses Where Federal Investigators Found Recruiting Abuses," saying:

Two campuses were involved, one in Florida "where undercover government investigators posing as applicants encountered admissions officers who lied about the college's accreditation and admissions-test proctors who coached the investigators on the answers." Recruiters also "scolded and mocked them for being hesitant to take out government-subsidized loans" for tuition.

Kaplan officials disingenuously said they were "sickened" about apparent practices endemic throughout its system for years.

Encounters were videotaped and played at an August Senate hearing. Kaplan executives did a poor Claude Rains imitation - he as Captain Renault in Casablanca, saying he was shocked, shocked about what he knew was going on. Kaplan officials disingenuously said they were "sickened" about apparent practices endemic throughout its system for years.

They've been accused many times before. At least four pending former employee lawsuits raise similar allegations as the government's. As of June 2010, Kaplan had over 112,000 students enrolled, an 18% increase over the previous year, many easy pickings to rip off for more profits ahead, even in a dire economy.

In his Daily Censored article, Weil explained that Kaplan enrolls poor and low-income students on federal loans, leaving them "indebted and unemployed." A whistleblower exposed the scheme - how hundreds of unsuspecting students are recruited, then abandoned in debt.

Students enrolled in the "CHI/Kaplan Surgical Technology Program....were purposely not being told (that) externship (clinical experience) sites, required for the....program would not be available." If true, it amounts to "concealment fraud, overt misrepresentation and possible theft of Title IV funds."

Yet for years, students were enrolled for an annual tuition cost of around $24,000. "When the fraud was detected....hundreds of students (couldn't) finish their programs and had their personal lives and credit history ruined."

Is Kaplan any different from Goldman Sachs scamming investors, or Prudential Insurance ripping off dead war vets' beneficiaries and getting away with it? Apparently not. In this case, poor and minority students are most hurt, "suffer(ing) garnishment of their wages or (huge) monthly payments beyond their means, while others faced attachment by way of liens on their properties, if they had any." Many won't ever recover from Kaplan's disreputable practices. Yet apparently they continue unabated.

The company uses government Title IV funds "for student loans to pay for tuition." They account for "90% of their revenues," employing "unethical if not illegal methods" of scamming students for profit. Tens of millions of dollars are involved and perhaps thousands of students.

"SurgTech was one of CHI/Kaplan's most profitable programs." Mostly minority female students were enrolled, using Title IV funds. However, Kaplan "signed up more (of them) than their program could serve and continued" enrolling more.

"To cover up the enrollment fraud," CHI/Kaplan "warehous(ed) students - basically telling them to go home....until their externships came up," though Kaplan kept it hidden from authorities to keep Title IV funds coming.

The company "vanished" students from its rolls, listing them as "drops" to shield themselves from liability "without damming the revenue stream and the fiduciary responsibility of the corporation to its shareholders and investors."

Unknown to those enrolled, they were lied to, put in a program Kaplan knew they couldn't complete. "Even top management" knew about the scam from the start. Yet they over-enrolled in day and evening courses, even without promised externships. Up to 90% of students "had no legal or financial resources at all. (They) were desperate and were attending what they thought was a bona fide college" to improve their lives. Instead of being educated, they became trapped "in a quicksand of debt."

After the Department of Education began examining Kaplan's practices, "SurgeTech's program curiously disappeared from CHI/Kaplan's degree offerings" in late 2008. At the time, state agencies "were threatening to withdraw accreditation."

From what's known so far, "Kaplan knowingly, over a ten year period, misled by omission, prospective students, their accrediting body, and the US Dept. of Ed, causing the government to approve tens of millions of dollars of Title IV student loans for a program" enrollees couldn't finish. The entire scheme was fraudulent.

The "newspaper that famously broke the Watergate scandal" buried this one with no mention, even though virtually everyone at CHI/Kaplan up to the company's CEO knew about the "criminal conspiracy and eventual fraud."

Business, however, is business. Kaplan makes money the old-fashioned way. They steal it from unsuspecting poor and minority students, their welfare and futures wrecked from the experience.


Stephen Lendman

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His blog is sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



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This story was published on September 22, 2010.
 

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