On the heels of exploiting the name of perhaps the world's all-time greatest free-marketeer, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has decided to cut right to the chase and abuse the term "free market" itself. Writing in the Washington Post as part of his ongoing effort to demonize banks and push the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act over the finish line, Duncan offers the following:
The president's plan actually creates jobs and draws on free-market principles by selecting private companies through a competitive process to service student loans issued directly by the Education Department. These private companies, including Sallie Mae, compete for our business and are evaluated on the quality of their customer service and their default rates.
Got it? When the federal government decides which companies get to service loans that it completely controls, those are "free-market principles" at work.
Right. And the legislation Duncan is trying to sell us really is fiscally "responsible."