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July 16, 2012 - Image 2

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Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2012-07-16
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Monday, July 16, 2012
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Obama signs bill to
extend lower student
loan rates for one year

rate of
one ye
and tI
tion, v
he si
the lo
had t
on Ju
the rz
to th
ate st
tion re
had i
that C
was r
lege a

)sidized Stafford Union address on Jan. 24.
In the speech, Obama said col-
ins to stay at 3.4 lege affordability is vital.
"Higher education can't be a
percent luxury - it is an economic impera-
tive that every family in America
By STEVE ZOSKI should be able to afford," Obama
Daily News Editor said.
Three days later on Jan. 27,
sident Barack Obama has Obama spoke at the University's Al
n about making college more Glick Field House, where he called
able, delivering financial aid for financial aid reform.
a and protecting students Coleman issued a press release
student loan interest rate in support of Obama's remarks
ises throughout this election regarding higher education in his
State of the Union address, then
July 6, Obama signed a bill appeared alongside Obama during
in addition to authorizing his visit to the University.
billion in funding for trans- On April 24, Obama held a con-
:ion projects, will direct $6.7 ference call from Air Force One
to delay the increase of the with reporters from various col-
nsubsidized Stafford student legenewspapersinwhichhecalled
for undergraduates from 3.4 for students to get engaged and be"
ant to 6.8 percent interest for vocal about stopping student loan
ear. interest rates from doubling.
e bill came to Obama's desk In the conference call, Obama,
passing the Senate 74-19 who noted that he and his wife
he House 373-52. No Demo- remember their experience paying
voted against the legisla- their own student loans, said stu-
which was also supported by dent loan debt continues to grow.
blicans. "For the first time now, we've
cording to USA Today, before got Americans owing more debt
gned legislation extending on their student loans than they do
wer rate for one year, Obama on their credit cards," Obama said.
o sign a one-week extension In the conference call, Obama
une 29. If congress hadn't warned that the Stafford rates
d legislation to extend were due to double to 6.8 percent
ate, it would have reverted by July if students didn't make
e 6.8-percent rate. Gradu- their voices heard, adding that the
udents and undergraduates issue has "never been more impor-
unsubsidized student loans tant."
dy pay the 6.8-percent rate. According to CNN, when he
cording to The New York signed the one-year extension last
s, the rate had been at 6.8 week, Obama said he hoped the
nt until 2007, when legisla- bipartisanship that contributed to
educed the rate to 3.4 percent the bill's passage would continue.
a July 1, 2012 deadline. " 'This is an outstanding piece
e New York Times added of business, and I'm very appre-
congressional Democrats ciative of the hard work that Con-
ntroduced the legislation in gress has done on it. My hope is
to bring the rate to 3.4 per- that this bipartisan spirit spills
with low- and middle-income over into the next phase,' Obama
rgraduates in mind. said, encouraging members to pass
roughout the past year, both larger infrastructure measures
ta and University President and 'start doing more to reduce
Sue Coleman discussed the the debt burden that our young
of making higher education people are experiencing,' " CNN
affordable for students. reported.
st December, an open letter Furthermore, the Associated
Coleman sent to Obama call- Press reported that White House
r affordable higher education senior adviser David Plouffe sent
eleased to the public. Obama an e-mail in which he thanked
addressed the need for col- Americans for putting pressure on
ffordability in his State of the Congress.

"You took to Twitter and Face-
book. You sent emails and talked
to your friends and neighbors. And
inthe end,yourvoices made all the
difference," Plouffe wrote.
In an interview, Business senior
Manish Parikh, president of the
University's Central Student Gov-
ernment, said the extension is a
victory for college students, add-
ing that they helped make the
extension possible by taking con-
trol of their own issue.
"The president kicked off this
whole tour of college affordabil-
ity at the University of Michigan
on January 27 and countless Uni-
versity of Michigan students have
taken to Facebook and Twitter
and written to their congressmen
and elected officials and media to
discuss this whole issue and the
previous situation of risingcollege
interest rates," Parikh said. "But
the students here are the real vic-
tors and the real ones who made
this happen."
Parikh said he was glad the
extension would help save many
University students nearly $1,000
this year. But he said measures to
make college more affordable are
as pressing as ever, noting that
many University students already
have debt.
"The average University of
Michigan student is accruing
$27,828 of average debt when
(they) graduate," Parikh said.
Parikh added that he would
like to see the issue resolved on a
longer-term basis so debate over
extending the rates doesn't need
to happen year after year.
"Stafford loan interest rates
should be permanently kept at the
low level of 3.4 percent, as opposed
to these low rate-shaving to be
renewed on a yearly basis, without
which they will double," Parikh
said. "The real discussion regard-
ing these interest rates we should
be having is about further reduc-
ing them, rather than discussing
the possibility of raising them."
In an e-mail to The Michigan
Daily, LSA junior Lauren Coff-
man, the communications director
for the University's chapter of the
College Democrats, wrote that she
was displeased that Republicans
made deliberation over the bill
take this long, but added that the
bipartisanship shown was a prom-
ising sign for students.-
"It's unfortunate that Congres-
sional Republicans allowed us to
get to the point that not passing
the bill was a concern, but it is
promising to see legislators from
both sides of the aisle coming
together to do what'sbest for stu-

dents," Coffman wrote.
Coffman added that she hopes
the bill is only the start of reforms
from the President, if re-elected,
as well as increased awareness
toward making college more
"Hopefully this bill will lead to
increased awareness of student
debt, and reforms which will give
recent graduates more freedom to
pursue career opportunities that
could greatly improve the quality
of life for our nation's citizens,"
Coffman wrote. "The president is
acutely aware of the toll that stu-
dent debt can take, having recently
paid off his own student loans, and
I'm sure we'll see more of his dedi-
cation to increased access to edu-
cation throughout the campaign
In an interview, LSA senior
Rachel Jankowski, chair of the
University's chapter of the College
Republicans, said it was good to
see higher education as a priority,
abut added that the legislation isn't
fixing the actual problem.
together - both Democrats and
Republicans - to pass the bill,
especially on something as impor-
tant as education," Jankowski
said. "But I think the reason why
a lot of Republicans may not have
been completely for it is because it
doesn't really do much to address
the cost of tuition."
Jankowski added that the cost
of education continues to rise and
said subsidizing interest rates isn't
going to fix the rise of higher edu-
"It's incredibly short-term, and
eventually those interest rates are
going to most likely go up again
because you can only sustain that
for so long and you still have the
underlying issue, so it really does
nothing to solve the actual prob-
In an e-mail to the Daily, Pame-
la Fowler, executive director of the
University's Office of Financial
Aid, wrote that University stu-
dents-will benefit from the legisla-
"We had estimated the average
student, who borrows each year
for an undergraduate degree and
repays that loan over the standard
10-year repayment period, would
have paid $1,000 more in interest
if the legislation had not gone for-
ward. Saving $1,000 over 10 years
will mean a lot to our students,"
Fowler wrote. "Let's hope we can
get long-term interest rate relief
for students - and soon."
Editor in Chief Jacob Axelrad

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Chicago based music
festival brings indie
music to the masses

members are also
whom have their ey
as they smile andi
they understand He
to be beautiful- in
Exactly what it is th
remains unknown.
It's 4:35. Indie r
Olivia Tremor Con

Editor in Chief

Giacomo Bologna

Monday, July 16, 2012IARTS 11
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com I I
Picho rjst hip ser-ish enough

Managing Editor

Anna Rozenberg Mnagig News Editor
Adrienne Roberts Ediorial PagEdtor
tolleenTthomas Mnging Sports Edior
coll,.thoxich igadaily..i.,.
Annaladovskasa aa ginghArtsxEditor
Terra Mslengraff Managing PhotoEditor
AliciaKosaldsed Mnagig Dsign.Editor

According to A$AP Rocky, it's green stage with t
"raining like a motherfucker." Yet talgia vibes, remit
it feels more like a light drizzle. Beatles and more
It's the first day of the Pitchfork experimental pop.
Music Festival held in Union Park the festival's older
on Chicago's West Side. Now in its the group originally
eighth year, Pitchfork is what one went on hiatus in 2
acquaintance and Pitchfork PR reformed in 2009. I
person calls a "more lax festival" after the performa
than others - notably Bonnaroo, member Bill Dossjo
Coachella and Lollapalooza. As band sometimes qu
evidenced by the toddler bouncing selves due to their a
his head up and down by my side "I think our mu
as A$AP Rocky instructs him to about following you
"put his hands up," my acquain- your dreams, butv
tance may be correct: Pitchfork is dream happens to b
a mellow place. mean, that's what
"There are a lot of people that We're old enough wi
may not have come seen us just be growing up and g
because they can't come see us at we're not."
a club," Zach Medearis of Outer
Minds said in an interview with Bringing it back
the Michigan Daily. "We were play-
ing for people that aren't really old Divided into thr
enough to get into bars. I like that. es - red, green and
I'm into that." names that appet
Significantly smaller in size than include hip-hop ac
anyofthe "Big Three,"you can walk and one of the even
from one end of Pitchfork to the performers: Leslie F
other in a matter of minutes. And if excitement precede:
you do traverse all the way from the Leading with her n
press check-in point to the corner she interacts with
straddling Warren Boulevard and making jokes like an
Ashland Avenue, you find the Blue "Uh-oh, hold on,
Stage where Tim Hecker is per- bered how the next v
forming. says during a solo per
He stands absolutelystill as puls- crowd cheers, loving
ing, rhythmic beats emanate from At one point sE
the surroundingspeakers. It sounds the audience to pt
like something very close to music machines out of their
but with a loud, gonging noise takes us "all the way
thrown into the mix. The audience think." And so begin

still, some of
es fully closed,
nod as though
cker's message
its simplicity.
hey understand
ock band The
trol grace the
heir '60s nos-
niscent of the
r age bracket,
formed in '92,
000, and then
n an interview
nce, founding
kingly said the
estions them-
sic is kind of
tr dreams, not
whatever your
be," he said. "I
.we're doing.
here we should
etting jobs, but
ee main stag-
d blue - other
ar on Friday
t Big K.R.I.T.
ing's final two
eist. A buzz of
S her entrance.
ewer material
the audience,
told pro.
I just remem-
'erse goes," she
formance. The
he commands
ull their time
pockets as she
backto 2006, I
s her return to

her older, more famous songs. But 'your health. Wearing white face
since some of these older songs were paint that makes him look like a'
not actually written by her, she puts kind of psychedelic mime, he sin-
her own spin on them, remixing gles out a woman at the front of the
her own stuff. The audience's echo crowd.
of the refrain "Whoa, bring them "Little miss, little miss," he
all back to life," from "Graveyard," says. After capturing her attention
creates a symbiotic connection he politely suggests that instead
between artist and attendees before of hydrating with cold water, she
she lets us go back into the "sweaty should drink room-temperature
nightto get even sweatier." water so it's not such a shock to her
As we file out onto Ashland system. This is a trick he learned in
Avenue where the church across boy scouts, he tells the crowd.,
the street casts a shadow over the "God bless America. And God
entire festival, Laura, a photog- bless the Boy Scouts," he says.
rapher from another publication Though Cox had to compete with
who bums a ride home from us, the pouring rain, he still managed
tells me, "Pitchfork's the ultimate to enchant, using an acoustic gui-
hipster place." After a pause she tar to create eerie, otherworld-
explains her statement, saying, ly notes. But he kept everyone
"Because it's all the people who grounded at the end of his perfor-
read Pitchfork." mance, offering a modest apology
And yet, Pitchfork doesn't just for the rain's damage to his set.
put on so-called hipster bands for "The rain killed myshit," he said.
their loyal readers. There's another Steven Ellison (Flying Lotus)
objective at play here, one in keep- mixed and matched tracks from
ing with its traditional festival artists like Erykah Badu and Pharo-
nature: introducing smaller groups ahe Monch. The rain had abated
to those who may never have heard and the sun was hot, allowing him
of them. to momentarily turn the grassy field
"What I like about Pitchfork into a dance party.
is that they try to bring up bands 6:15. Green stage. Sleigh Bells
that no one knows about and no lead singer Alexis Krauss is. a
one cares about," Medearis said. real rock star, and she looked the
"Nobody knows about us. We're part: leather gloves, jean cutoffs,
pretty new and pretty small. And a ripped-up t-shirt. She crowd-
they gave us agood opportunity and surfed, danced across the stage,
a good chance." sweated it out and, most important-
ly, belted husky vocals in the vein
The next generation of Brian Johnson or Joan Jett. In
short, she captivated.
Saturday. 2:30. Atlas Sound (also
known as Bradford Cox of the band Post rock
Deerhunter) is concerned about

The sun begins to set and the
two choices for the night's conclu-
sion, Grimes and Godspeed You!
Black Emperor, are on opposite
stages. Their genres are extreme-
ly different, Grimes being more
intense and upbeat and Godspeed
being more low-key.
Godspeeds' first song lasts about
40 minutes. Sounding initially like
one long tuning session, they soon
gained momentum, turning their
instruments into' a cacophony of
epic din.
"I was initially worried," an audi-
ence member at Godspeed tells me.
"Sleigh Bells and Hot Chip were
very high-octane and in-your-face.
But this is more ambient post rock,
and I don't think a lot of people like
that. But I think this more ambi-
ent sound is a good way to end the
Despite its small size and Lau-
ra's words of Pitchfork as a haven
of hipsterdom, I smile because
I do not consider myself a hip-
ster. I barely know what the word
means. But for a period of time I
stood with thousands of others
and withstood the rain, discussed
bad sci-fi movies with an up-and-
coming artist, met a band that's
back in the game and danced to
remixed hip-hop beats in a field of
I look past my usual sarcastic
demeanor and recognize that I
was part of something bigger than
myself, if only for 48 hours; The
audience I encountered on my first
day, the one who may have under-
stood something, seems a bit less
mysterious now than it did befor.

Kendra Furry


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