Purdue University President Mitch Daniels, director of the Office of Management and Budget under George W. Bush and a two-term Republican governor of Indiana before assuming his current role in 2013, was the guest at the Oct. 30 Monitor Breakfast.
Q: President Obama's proposal to tie federal financial aid to new government ratings of universities and colleges:
A: "The general idea of focusing more on performance ... is a good idea, but I am pretty dubious about the federal government being the ones to put a system together."
The nation's $17 trillion debt:
"The debts we are piling up right now are an obstacle to growth.... It is the largest nonmilitary danger we have ever faced."
Young people and the nation's finances:
"This generation has a right to be as upset with its elders as any in history. They are going to inherit a mountain of debt."
Young people and the Affordable Care Act:
"[It] soaks the young to benefit their elders. Premiums for young people will go up way beyond whatever is actuarially fair and accurate in order to subsidize the elders."
The longer-term response to the Affordable Care Act by young people:
"I don't think they have quite focused on this. But when they do, they are going to say 'We got handed a really raw deal here.' "
Why faster economic growth is critical:
"We are not going to be ... an economically successful country, a solvent country, or – frankly – a societally harmonious country at 1 to 2 percent growth rates. It will destroy something bigger than the middle class; it will destroy the sense of upward mobility and therefore social cohesiveness that we have always been blessed with."