ICE's Policy of Excluding Online Students isn't "New"

Universities should have been prepared for the possibility that ICE would not continue to decline to enforce an existing rule.

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

I've seen countless stories about ICE's "new" requirement barring student visas for students who would be taking only online classes (e.g., NPR). The idea that this is "new" is false. [Added: A commenter claimed that no one is claiming the rule is new. Many reporters have. Meanwhile, the dean of Yale Law School, who should certainly know better, writes as if requiring in-person classes for foreign students is some novel assault on the academy, rather than a longstanding regulation, to wit, "The policy is also flatly inconsistent with the core tenets of academic institutions. Knowledge knows no borders, and an intellectual culture depends on inclusion and openness to thrive."]

Foreign students have long been required to take a "full course of study" to fulfill visa requirements. The longstanding rule is that a study may take only one online class per semester as part of the full course of study. ICE *may* allow a student to take more than one online course, but any additional course must be taken in the physical presence of a university employee. Here is the DHS webpage from 2012, in the Obama years:

An F-1 student may only count one online or distance education course without the physical oversight of a school employee (or the equivalent of three credits) toward a full-course of study per academic term. F-1 students may be eligible to take more than one online class to maintain their status as long as the class is physically proctored or monitored by a school employee.

ICE waived the rule for the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters due to the Covid emergency. Given that Congress has now had four months to address the issue but has not, it's not clear that ICE would be legally justified in asserting a continuing "emergency" that would allow it to ignore a binding regulation. [ADDED: And what ICE has announced isn't even a full reversion to the existing rule; instead of requiring students to take all but one class in-person, it allows students to take all but one class online.]

In any event, given that the regulation is clear that foreign students may not stay in the U.S. on student visas if they are taking online only classes, and given that universities knew they may have to go all online this Fall, why are so many university "leaders" acting like the government actually enforcing the rule once the immediate emergency has passed is a complete surprise? Surely it was *possible* that ICE would agree to continue to not enforce a rule, but surely any decent university lawyer would have understood that it was not a certainty, and would have been advising the provost to make contingency plans for foreign students.

For what it's worth I (a) feel bad for the foreign students caught up in this mess; (2) am no expert in how much discretion ICE has to waive rules and under what circumstances; and (3) generally oppose executive branch agencies ignoring or changing the law on the fly for policy reasons, absent true emergency.

[Cross-posted with minor modifications from Instapundit.]

UPDATE: The ICE announcement suggests that they are enforcing the visa exclusion if a student is only taking online classes. Taking one in-person class, or even an independent that requires a meeting or two with a faculty member, may suffice to allow a student to keep his visa. On the one hand, this means that the enforcement policy is much less draconian that has been portrayed. On the other hand, it raises the question of why, if ICE could limit enforcement in this manner, it couldn't simply extend the waiver.

On a related note, people have forwarded me emails from university presidents who should know better stating that enforcing the rule is hostile to "immigrants." There is little doubt that the Trump administration is hostile to immigrants, but visitors here on student visas are not "immigrants."

Note: post edited as noted, and the update edited to reflect further investigation.

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  1. ICE waived the rule for the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters due to the Covid emergency. Given that Congress has now had four months to address the issue but has not, it’s not clear that ICE would be legally justified in asserting a continuing “emergency” that would allow it to ignore a binding regulation.

    Precisely this. We don’t have an emergency anymore.

    1. That “emergency” status depends on your political filters.

      Will it hurt Trump? Then it’s an emergency and people are dying left and right and there is not enough testing; and what’s a little economic recession if it helps Biden win in the end.

      Will it help Trump? Opening the economy means that there won’t be a V shaped recovery, so lockdown protests mean that there is still an emergency. It’s also not an emergency when it comes to protesting systematic racism, because organizing the left hurts Trump. Religious types generally support Trump, so it’s an emergency so we can ban singing during services in California, because it’s still an emergency.

    2. You’re a Trump guy, not a Fauci guy?

      Disaffected, reckless, science-disdaining bigots are among my favorite culture war casualties.

      1. Speaking of science-disdaining bigots, here is Dr. Fauci on March 8 telling Americans that they “should not be walking around with masks”:
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRa6t_e7dgI (2 minute video from CBS)

      2. More reckless, science-disdaining bigots: the WHO on March 30 recommending “people not wear face masks unless they are sick with Covid-19 or caring for someone who is sick”:
        https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/30/world/coronavirus-who-masks-recommendation-trnd/index.html

        1. Bigots?

          Also, telling you need to reach back to March when no one much knew what was going on in order to equal the nonsense Trump is pushing now.

    3. If we don’t have an emergency, why are the universities going online? Why would ICE have waived the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters but not newer ones, if universities are engaging in the same thing that required the exceptions for Spring and Summer?

      1. You ask a fair question. I shall answer.

        If we don’t have an emergency, why are the universities going online?

        This is certainly not about protecting students. This is not ‘for the children’. Far from it. The data are that the Wuhan coronavirus isn’t killing college-aged students. In fact, the mortality rate is well under 1%. The science says if you are an overweight, elderly professor with atherosclerosis and hypertension….then you need to self-isolate because you’re at a higher risk. We now know much more today than we did back in March/April.

        You can call this a lot of things (in July), but an emergency is not one of them. Were it truly an emergency situation, the Congress would act. Case in point, the Congress acted remarkably fast (in April) to pass PPP and related bills. They felt it was an economic emergency, and they were correct.

        Besides…these students are perfectly free to attend online classes from their home countries. They are here for an education. They are not being deprived of that. The educational content will be delivered differently, via the internet. No big deal.

        1. “The science says if you are an overweight, elderly professor with atherosclerosis and hypertension…”

          That’s the problem the universities are facing. Their professors are objecting to going back to campus, and they have to placate them. It may not be a true “emergency” for the students, but it’s an emergency for some small set of people.

          “Were it truly an emergency situation, the Congress would act.”

          I don’t agree. Congress often fails to act quickly enough to address pressing issues and frequently acts on things that aren’t pressing issues.

          “The educational content will be delivered differently, via the internet. No big deal.”

          It’s a huge deal to them if they have to fly home!

          1. it’s not any bigger of a deal than it is for US students who have to fly home.

            1. They don’t have to fly home. And of course it’s a bigger deal, since the returning student will have to go through the VISA process, again. Some domestic student flying home to see his parents doesn’t have to reapply to fly back to college town, USA.

              1. Many of them will have to, as the schools doing online-only instructions are limiting on-campus residence. Harvard, as an example, won’t allow any Junior students to live on campus this school year.
                I am by no mean a visa expert, but I believe you are wrong on the need to reapply – an F-1 is valid for as long as the student is enrolled. Students can leave the US and return (as many do during the summer) on the same F-1, no reapplication required.

          2. NtoJ…Now I don’t suppose telling those elderly professors with multiple comordities, “learn to code”, would be a terrible thing, would it? Life is not fair. God knows, I have had my share of setbacks in life. And haven’t we heard that particular phrase often enough.

            Newsflash: Maybe those professors need to find alternate employment if they cannot do the job. The students should not suffer because of the professors who fear possible infection. They are, after all, the customers (or victims, depending on your outlook).

            We can agree to disagree on whether Congress acts in emergencies.

            It’s a huge deal to them if they have to fly home! Please. If these students can afford full freight at Harvard, a plane ticket home is not breaking their bank.

            1. “Newsflash: Maybe those professors need to find alternate employment if they cannot do the job.”

              The context here is professors demanding that they be allowed to do their jobs from home. Some of them can do that. Professor Blackman posted a bunch about teaching remotely. I have employees who have requested to work from home, and I’ve happily granted it. I don’t think the federal government should institute immigration policies intended to interfere with where I and my employees and customers agree to draw such lines.

              “The students should not suffer because of the professors who fear possible infection.”

              Agree! Why should foreign students suffer? My position is they shouldn’t be punished by ICE.

              “If these students can afford full freight at Harvard, a plane ticket home is not breaking their bank.”

              Less than 1% of our international students attend Harvard.

              1. “Less than 1% of our international students attend Harvard.”
                But they are still paying full freight which in most cases is not so different from Harvard’s

              2. Well guess what, NtoJ…I disagree. A large part of pedagogy and the college experience is the direct in-person interaction between students and professors. To me, that is akin to a job requirement. And you know what, I bet a hell of a lot of parents see it the same way I do. What are they paying for? If I want some educated dude over the internet to teach me, I can go to Youtube and find that. What, you expect people are just going to meekly pay full freight for online instruction? Oh man, you’re dreaming. The bottom line with regard to the professors who refuse to teach in-person is that if you can’t do the job the way it needs to be done, then you leave. That is how it works in the real world, meaning the world outside of academia and the federal bureaucracy.

                There is no one to placate here. There are plenty of young, smart and talented academic professors ready, willing and able to take their place. Now, if colleges don’t like that, or maybe you don’t like that, and they don’t want to force those elderly professors to ‘learn to code’, then they can make some changes and require some in-person instruction for these students. Then students won’t be ‘punished’.

                The emergency is over, and now the hard work of learning to live with the Wuhan coronavirus begins in earnest. Sadly, high risk individuals now face a new, different reality and they will have to adapt. We have all had to adapt to a new reality.

                I work remotely and manage a remote team (in private industry). Very different thing than academia and teaching (did the academia thing already). I will say that technology today enables good collaboration, much moreso than 25 years ago.

                1. “What, you expect people are just going to meekly pay full freight for online instruction?“

                  Based on Bryan Caplan’s book I think they are buying signaling, not lectures. But I’m prepared to be wrong. The colleges thought they could sell online only classes. (Many did pre-Covid.)

                  I understand you think you know what the market should look like. I’m not so confident. But I am confident the government should stay out of it.

              3. I don’t think the federal government should institute immigration policies intended to interfere with where I and my employees and customers agree to draw such lines.

                The feds aren’t (expanding your hypothetical) interfering with how you draw the line regarding working from home.

                The Feds are saying if your employee can work remotely then they don’t need to be physically present in the US to do so.

          3. Here’s the deal. The universities are choosing this route that revokes the visa status of their international students

            If a University chooses to fail a student, the student loses their visa status. If the University says the student hasn’t paid their bill, so can’t attend, the student loses their visa status. If the student is suspended/expelled by the University for some infraction, the student loses the visa status. If the University goes bankrupt and can no longer offer classes, the student loses visa status. And if the University shifts their courses entirely to online-online….the student will lose their visa status. (Outside of a very limited time exception that has expired)

            Here’s the real threat the Universities like MIT and Harvard face. The good international students will just TRANSFER to one of the many, many US colleges which maintain in person classes in the fall. That’s their choice.

            Lastly, a point of oddity. Supposedly this epidemic is so bad that Harvard and MIT cannot POSSIBLY have in-person classes. But they demand that thousands of foreign students (including many new freshman students) be allowed to come to Boston and Cambridge, live in tight student housing, be allowed to visit the crowded bars, restaurants, and house parties. Seems counter-intuitive to a mass epidemic, and you think they’d rather they stay home…

            1. MIT students who live on campus will live in single occupancy rooms. The biggest concern is not expressed as being for the faculty (although obviously there is much concern) but with the capacity of the campus to enforce social distancing and appropriate hygenie in classes and in university owned and/or operated housing.

              1. So, what about all the double, triple, and quaduple occupancy rooms at MIT? What about that large % of students who live off campus, often in doubled rooms?

            2. “Here’s the deal. The universities are choosing this route that revokes the visa status of their international students”

              I agree that that is likely the point of this ICE policy. The vituperative government cannot directly coerce universities to stay open, so it’s using whatever power it does have, in this case over their foreign customers, to try and force universities (including private ones) to do what the government can’t otherwise force directly.

              The best faith interpretation of the policy I can think of is that the President merely doesn’t want to allow any emergency-type policy continuations for fear that his political opponents will use it against him. Which isn’t much of a defense of them on leadership grounds, but at least it isn’t exclusively mean-spirited. In either event, the policy decision is fucking dumb.

              1. “any emergency-type policy continuations ”

                Perhaps you’ve heard of the “Temporary protected status” program?

                You know, so refugees from various natural disasters could “temporarily” reside in the US? How did that work out?….20 years after the natural disaster?

                Have you heard of the abundant fraud with “student visas” and how they can be used to come to the US, but not to actually “study” but to instead get around immigration? And how an “online-only” course is especially vunerable to such fraud?

                1. I don’t know, how did it work out? You seem to have strong feelings about it. Please share with the class? (Do you think I was born with knowledge of how temporary relocation programs did or didn’t work out?) Now is your chance.

                  1. “I don’t know, how did it work out?”

                    See, that’s the problem. You don’t know. You don’t even bother to look it up. You blindly propose policies and extensions, without knowing history, and how similar policies have been abused.

        2. The data are that the Wuhan coronavirus isn’t killing college-aged students.

          How have we gotten to the point where the Republican Death Cult thinks that “Oh, you got a serious illness? Well, you probably won’t die, so no big deal” is actually a good argument?

          Besides…these students are perfectly free to attend online classes from their home countries. They are here for an education. They are not being deprived of that. The educational content will be delivered differently, via the internet. No big deal.

          Except for the ones who can’t access it via the Internet from their home countries. And the ones who have leases here.

          1. Yes, we have gotten to that point.

      2. Why would ICE have waived the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters but not newer ones, if universities are engaging in the same thing that required the exceptions for Spring and Summer?

        Because in the early days, ICE, like everybody else did not know what to make of the virus, and out of an abundance of caution went into a protective crouch. Now that it is clear that shutting down colleges is an overreaction, ICE no longer thinks it necessary or desirable to persist with an unnecessary waiver.

        Of course, colleges which continue to think they need to remain closed – except online – remain free to do that. Sarcastro’s market remains fully open to allow them to make that choice.

        But the accommodation in the immigration rules which allows for foreign students to enter the US to attend college can now revert to its original uncrouching form.

        1. “Now that it is clear that shutting down colleges is an overreaction…”

          That’s far from clear to me. I’m an adjunct professor and would be perfectly happy, and in fact would prefer, to go teach in person. But the old tenured professors have completely different issues. They may not want to be around a bunch of young people (who are also going out to bars, partying, etc.) carrying a disease that, at least to some subset of people is threatening.

          “But the accommodation in the immigration rules which allows for foreign students to enter the US to attend college can now revert to its original uncrouching form.”

          If the market is keeping the schools closed because of COVID, what’s the rush?

          1. If the market is keeping the schools closed because of COVID, what’s the rush?

            To what “market” do you refer ?

            1. You don’t think students want in-person instruction?

              1. I expect they do. And again – to what “market” do you refer ?

                1. The higher education market.

                  1. If students wish to return to school, and schools do not wish to reopen, talk me through how this “market” is operating .

                    1. Because in-person instruction is only one of a panoply of values students are taking into account.

                    2. Is it your position then that those schools that wish to offer online tuition only are doing so in response to students’ demand ?

                    3. Because they’re offering to sell students offline lectures, and the students are willing to buy them? My law office is closed (at least the physical space mostly is), yet we are still operating in the market.

                    4. Not quite sure I understand “offline” here ? Is that a typo for online, or do you mean the opposite of online, ie in person ?

                      If it’s a typo meaning online, then sure, the students can buy online classes and enjoy them from Turkey. Or switch to Palookaville Tech which is running in person courses.

                      If it means in person then the in person classes continue.

                      Either way the market chugs on, with or without visas, as appropriate.

                    5. Yea, typo.

                      “If it’s a typo meaning online, then sure, the students can buy online classes and enjoy them from Turkey.”

                      Well the universities would prefer to sell them online courses without their customers having to fly to Turkey to view them online, since you don’t have to be in Turkey to connect to the internet.

                      “Either way the market chugs on, with or without visas, as appropriate.”

                      My position is that any regulation which interferes with voluntarily transactions between consenting adults is interfering with markets. That alone doesn’t make it impermissible or ill-advised. But you and I don’t have to pretend through argument that there is no market affected.

                    6. Sure, the market is being disrupted by regs to the same extent as it was so disrupted in 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 etc. Border controls on people do affect markets. As do border controls on goods.

                      So if the argument is that regulations interfere with market operations, fine, they do.

                      I’m still struggling though to understand what I understand to be Sarcastro’s argument that schools deciding to close for live classes, although their customers would prefer to be open, is a demonstration of the market operating.

              2. They definitely do. That has been the overwhelming response at my university

                1. Indeed. Which is why I would imagine that letting the market operate would work just fine.

                  Unless you are hostile to higher ed and don’t want things to go smoothly for them.

          2. “They may not want to be around a bunch of young people (who are also going out to bars, partying, etc.) carrying a disease that, at least to some subset of people is threatening.”

            That’s fine, they can just set up a telepresence link from their homes, and as long as there’s a TA proctoring, they’re good per the ICE reg.

            Which only requires of the foreign students that they take at least one in person course, and not take any courses remotely that are available in person. I looked it up and read it. It isn’t nearly as onerous as it’s being made out to be.

            1. Yea but if some universities don’t do sufficient virtue or panic signaling, they may lose professors entirely. And some of the students/customers may want that virtue and panic signaling, too.

              1. Then the universities need to make a choice

                1. No they don’t.
                  ICE is forcing them to make that choice needlessly.

                  1. ICE is not forcing any choice that would not have been made anyway.

                  2. Uh huh….

                    See, I want to get that new car. But I also don’t want to spend the money to get that new car. The “Government” is forcing me to make a choice needlessly with their “laws”. I should just be able to take it without paying for it…

                    Funny how “laws” and “democracy” work, isn’t it? It makes you make choices sometimes, that you don’t want to make.

                    1. There is no law compelling this. There is no additional money the status quo ante was costing the government.

                      Your attempted analogies indicate you haven’t really thought about this much at all.

                    2. “There is not law compelling this”

                      Right… There’s no law compelling immigration law. It’s just kinda made up. There’s no Immigration and Nationality Act…..

                    3. This is not compelled by that law.

                    4. Right… There’s no law compelling immigration law. It’s just kinda made up. There’s no Immigration and Nationality Act…..

                      Outside of Armchair Law, the INA doesn’t say anything about online classes.

                2. What’s the public’s interest in forcing universities to make that choice?

                  1. 1. “Virtue and panic signaling” is not a good rationale for making immigration choices.

                    2. Since J-1 Visas can be used for both legal, (and illegal) employment, it effectively competes for low-skill US jobs and labor.

                    1. 1 is non-responsive.
                      2 is manifestly untrue.

                    2. Just because you stick your head in the sand, doesn’t mean it’s untrue.

                    3. We’re talking about university here.

                      Not illegal, not low-skilled.

                    4. We’re talking about people who haven’t graduated from university….

                      Low skilled.

                    5. You think they’re competing for low-skilled jobs?

                      You’ve painted yourself into a very dumb corner.

        2. Now that it is clear that shutting down colleges is an overreaction

          How is it “clear?”

          Because ICE thinks so? They have no clue. The colleges plainly don’t think its an overreaction. They would certainly prefer to be open, yet are staying closed.

          1. When it comes to waiving government rules to meet emergencies, I should have thought it would be strange to rely on the opinions of the regulated above the opinion of the government.

            But if we are to instal this a principle of government, bring it on. When the government seeks to regulate, it should waive the regs if and when the regulated object. Good one.

            1. When it comes to waiving government rules to meet emergencies, I should have thought it would be strange to rely on the opinions of the regulated above the opinion of the government.

              Jesus, what kind of country do you think we live in? Rules are required to be made with the inputs of the regulated taken into account.

              1. “inputs of the regulated ”

                Regulatory capture is good now.

                1. That’s some bad faith nonsense right there.

                  1. That’s some bad faith nonsense right there.

                    Well, if anyone is an expert on bad faith arguments, it’s you.

                  2. “bad faith ”

                    Moi?

                    “made with the inputs of the regulated taken into account” is calling for rules to benefit the regulated more than the public good. The definition of regulatory capture.

                    1. No, it’s not.
                      And you know it.

              2. what kind of country do you think we live in?

                One planted thick with regulations, from coast to coast. Some of which are necessary or desirable, and most of which are not.
                And which are imposed by the government on the regulated, without their consent.

                Certainly in some cases, the legislative branch has imposed procedural requirements on the rulemaking apparatchiks, including, in some but not all cases, requirements for notice and consultation.

                But very definitely not a requirement for notice and consent.

                1. Your without consent paradigm is pretty tendentious – anarchist even.

                  But if you accept it, how can you like this regulation?

                  And even if you do not, it is definitely not strange to evaluate a policy based in part on the opinions of the regulated.

                  As is often the case, it appears you hate something you have not bothered to understand.

                  1. And even if you do not, it is definitely not strange to evaluate a policy based in part on the opinions of the regulated.

                    I agree that when one is not dealing in emergencies, it would be a good idea to seek the opinions of the regulated, and indeed those who are not regulated but who may be affected by changes in behavior by the regulated.

                    I merely point out that we do not live in this utopia. In practice, regulations are the bastard children of politicos and pressure groups who want regulations, and marks who want to be left alone. After the sausage has been made, the mark suffers to a greater or lesser extent, according to his budget.

                  2. Your without consent paradigm is pretty tendentious – anarchist even.

                    Regulation without consent by the regulated is….anarchy?

                    Up = down?
                    Black = white?
                    Yes = no?

              3. S0,
                You did not read in D’s post that the so-called “new rules” are just the old rules that had been suspended temporarily.

                1. I did. And I don’t buy that characterization. For one, the exigency giving rise to the change is still happening. For two, there is nothing mandating that the old rule is the norm and the new on is not.

            2. I should have thought it would be strange to rely on the opinions of the regulated

              The universities aren’t the ones regulated. The students are. The schools can do what they want.

              And what they generally would prefer is to re-open completely. ICE is trying to force them to do something they would like to do, but that they consider unwise.

              So you think ICE, which doesn’t even pretend to know anything about universities, is a better judge of the risks than the schools themselves?

              Sorry, Lee, but that’s ridiculous. This is more of Trump playing to the bigots. That’s all.

              1. So you think ICE, which doesn’t even pretend to know anything about universities, is a better judge of the risks than the schools themselves?

                And so, presumably, ICE was completely out of order when it promulgated the temporary waiver in the first place ?

                And all those Governors who’ve been shutting down churches are all regular churchgoers, right ? And also experienced runners of businesses, since they shut those down too.

                Bernard, your argument is completely fatuous. The regulated do not get a veto over government regulations on the basis that they know more than the government about their business.

                1. And so, presumably, ICE was completely out of order when it promulgated the temporary waiver in the first place ?

                  Talk about fatuous. This is completely idiotic. The schools wanted the order. There was no conflict between them and ICE over the matter, so there’s no question of which side was “right.”

                  Now there is a conflict, which is what this discussion is all about.

                  The governors shut down churches and businesses as a public health measure. Forcing these students to leave has nothing to with that. Indeed, the universities’ actions too affect the public health, as well as that of their students, staff, and faculty.

                  The parallel you’re trying to draw isn’t there.

    4. Wouldnt trump have to go through APA procedures to do what the law requires since it went through a period of time that it wasnt enforced

      1. That’s what the Harvard lawsuit argues.

        1. So why wasn’t the waiver a violation of the APA in the first place?

          1. According to the filing, for 3 reasons.

            1) there was actual reasoning given in the original guidance – i.e. citing the Covid exigency. This new guidance gives no reasoning. Which makes this arbitrary and capricious.

            2) there is a reliance interest being burdened that was not the case for the initial rule, which mantained the status quo.

            3) (not as sure I got this one right) the change from the status quo was sufficiently broad that it’s tantamount to a rule not a guidance, and so required full notice & comment.

  2. Come on man, you don’t need to advocate for this kind of heavy-handed action by the feds.

    ICE waived the rule for the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters due to the Covid emergency. Given that Congress has now had four months to address the issue but has not, it’s not clear that ICE would be legally justified in asserting a continuing “emergency” that would allow it to ignore a binding regulation.

    I don’t see how this argument works.

    Does Congressional inaction imply a lack of emergency? Because seems to me there are lots of potential reasons for Congressional inaction that are not based on exigencies, and that do not change ICE’s authority.

    Do you think this change comes from ICE’s OGC? All I read says this is a directive from the White House as part of their agenda to force schools to reopen.

    I do think schools should reopen. And the largely are. But even pro-big government me thinks this is a pretty awful way to go about incentivizing more of it.

    I mean, shouldn’t the market decide better than top-down federal hostage taking?

    1. “…shouldn’t the market decide better than top-down federal hostage taking?”

      *cough* Obamacare *cough*

      1. That’s irrelevant to the argument I was making about education and COVID.

        We can discus the market for health insurance another time and place.

        1. Irrelevant…naw, it just means your viewpoint depends on which ox is being gored. That’s only human I suppose.

          1. Or maybe the two markets are different.

            Or maybe I’m making an argument to Bernstein from Bernstein’s market-forward point of view.

            Or maybe I’m a hypocrite.

            None of that matters for you/Bernstein answering the question of why markets are not better than the gov in making decisions here.

            1. Well, being intellectually, ideologically, and otherwise rhetorically inconsistent is a sign of what, exactly?

              1. Give it a rest. When he calls for a market-based solution, you remind him of some other instance in which he’s against a market-based solution. But if you’re not prepared to agree with him on this market-based solution (and oppose the other), you’re no more intellectually, ideologically, or otherwise rhetorically consistent than he is. It wouldn’t matter, anyway, since you can’t rebut a proposal by attacking the proposer. (And, in fact, there are some problems that cannot be solved by markets.)

                1. Fah. Let him be hoisted by his own petard. The debate was about being intellectually, ideologically, and rhetorically consistent with regard to free markets and federal government interference in them. Don’t try to make it about all subjects and history.

                  I think Bob from Ohio had it right. The devil will quote Hayek if it suits him. It’s about whose ox is being gored.

                  1. “I think Bob from Ohio had it right. The devil will quote Hayek if it suits him. It’s about whose ox is being gored.”

                    So what? In the analogy, the devil is Sarcastro and you and Bob. So what difference does it make to accuse him of ideological inconsistency?

                    Your comment was wading into the following debate:

                    “I mean, shouldn’t the market decide better than top-down federal hostage taking?”

                    Your answer was “What about healthcare!” Fine. Healthcare should be privatized too, maybe. Does that have anything to do with whether it’s a good idea for the feds to use new modifications to existing regulations to force a nationwide policy of school openings by tangential means? There may be a lot of reasons that it should do that. “But Obamacare” isn’t one of them.

                    1. No, my answer wasn’t “what about healthcare”?, as if I wanted to debate healthcare. As much as “*cough* Obamacare *cough*” can be summarized as an argument (it technically isn’t) it was merely to point out that whether one approves or disapproves of a policy often depends on whose interests are being affected.

                  2. The debate was about being intellectually, ideologically, and rhetorically consistent with regard to free markets and federal government interference in them.

                    You don’t know what you’re talking about. It’s perfectly reasonable and consistent to be in favor of some government interventions in markets and not others. Only completely blind ideologues try to apply one principle to a vast array of wildly different situations.

                    1. You don’t know what you’re talking about either, because you’re showing what Hayek called the pretense of knowledge, imagining the market is something like a machine…that we can pull a lever here or push a button there and voilà, the policy outcomes we want.

                    2. m_k you don’t understand Hayek at all, it seems.

                      He was talking about Keynesianism (and on that has been pretty empirically proven incorrect).

                      You seem to think he’s talking about different sectors having identical markets and identical market failure modes.

                    3. imagining the market is something like a machine…that we can pull a lever here or push a button there and voilà, the policy outcomes we want.

                      What are you talking about? You make no sense. Talk about “pretense of knowledge.”

              2. Who is “intellectually, ideologically, and otherwise rhetorically inconsistent?”

                Saying a market approach is the best way to handle X, but that Y requires government involvement is not remotely inconsistent. It’s accepted even by conservative economists that there are cases where markets don’t work well, or at all, or work OK, but could be better.

                Stop pretending you know anything about it.

            2. “None of that matters for you/Bernstein answering the question of why markets are not better than the gov in making decisions here.”

              Why are we even asking the question? Maybe the markets would make better decisions, the question has nothing to do with whether or not ICE can continue to waive the rules. Congress has already decided that we don’t get to rely on the market here.

              1. No one is making the is argument in this thread, including Prof. Bernstein. (Though he also has some semantic quibbles)

                We’re in ought land now.

              2. “Congress has already decided that we don’t get to rely on the market here.”

                Are you saying Congress has mandated ICE’s new position? When did it do that?

                1. “Are you saying Congress has mandated ICE’s new position? When did it do that?”

                  Is sounds like Congress mandated the Obama-era ICE’s old position, presumably because Congress has passed laws allowing students attending school in the US to get student visas. ICE waived those rules on an emergency basis due to the pandemic.

                  But the passage of time and the fact that Congress hasn’t chosen to create rules addressing the current situation calls into question whether or not the current waiver continues to be justified, and that’s what ICE is supposed to be addressing. ICE is not supposed to be pondering whether the market or government should decide who gets to study in the US, are they?

                  1. I don’t think there’s a statute that required ICE to adopt the modification we’re talking about. And if they weren’t–that is, if it’s in ICE’s discretion either way–do you think they are statutorily prohibited from considering whether universities are, in fact, shutting down in-person classes, in determining whether there is an ongoing crisis?

                  2. 12 is correct. I’m not arguing for the “new” rule. I’m arguing that it’s not in fact a new rule, it’s ICE enforcing the existing rule. Which it seems to be ICE is obligated to do, it can’t simply ignore the law because it upsets Harvard.

                    1. The *impact* is new. It’s overly legalistic to be stuck on whether the rule itself is formally new or not; the effect is new.

                  3. Is sounds like Congress mandated the Obama-era ICE’s old position,

                    You’re mistaken.

                    Congress said that the visas were available only to bona fide students undertaking a course of college study. It said zilch about whether taking courses online made one a bona fide student or not. That’s just a regulation.

            3. Or maybe I’m a hypocrite.

              Occam’s Razor.

      2. *cough* Obamacare *cough*

        There is no similarity between the two cases. Aside from that, you have a point.

    2. “Emergencies” are, by definition, temporary. Eventually, if conditions don’t change, they become the proverbial “new normal”.

      In any event, the administration has only partially lifted their waiver: Rather than returning to the long standing (Since 2012) rule that only one online class would be permitted, they are instead merely requiring at least one in person class for this fall.

      Given that, with no in person classes at all, a student doesn’t really need to be in the US at all to take their classes, it’s hard to argue that 100% online learning ever should qualify one for an education visa. But the proposed rule for this coming academic year is not particularly unreasonable; Death rates have declined dramatically from their April peak, and running just a few in person classes isn’t that burdensome. Many academic institutions never stopped running them.

      At this point I think we’re starting to get a lot of pandemic theater, similar to the security theater we saw after 9-11. Pandemic theater is not a good reason to decline to at least partially enforce the law.

      1. Do you not think Covid is temporary? For all the discussions about the new normal, I don’t think anyone is saying we’ll be inside forever.

        The point is that the argument Prof. Bernstein makes ignores what the actual facts on the ground are, and the clear purpose and origin of this rule change.

        The argument that visas can just be turned on and off based on a given year’s education events is ignorant; many have pointed this out to you on previous threads, and yet you continue to make the same point.

        Death rates have declined dramatically from their April peak, and running just a few in person classes isn’t that burdensome
        I agree. But how about we let schools and students decide on this?

        Pandemic theater is not a good reason to decline to at least partially enforce the law.
        This change is not about rule of law, don’t even pretend. It’s about a policy agenda.

        1. There is no evidence that Covid is NOT temporary. We have no vaccine, we have no idea if there ever will be an effective vaccine as many novel coronaviruses have not had vaccines, such as SARS. We have no idea how long immunity lasts after infection. Some people have indicated immunity fades quite quickly meaning both the vaccine route and herd immunity route might be futile.

          The reality is we don’t know. If Covid will be like the Spanish Flu and burn itself out, or if Covid will be like Smallpox in the 1700s where its always present and occasionally flares up in certain areas.

          1. At some point, because we know the death rate is about the same as the flu, we are going to have to go about treating the Coronavirus as just background noise in a dangerous life. Like skin cancer risks from taking a long walk or driving during a thunderstorm at night. You can reduce your individual risk if you like, but the rest of society has to get along.

            I wouldn’t mind, though, if the new normal is with sanitizing of subway cars and Metra trains and sanitizer bottles everywhere for everyone’s use. I hate getting a cold.

            1. At some point, because we know the death rate is about the same as the flu

              Utter nonsense.

              It will eventually become endemic and no longer a pandemic, but you need to do some reading or something, because you’re making a foll of yourself.

        2. “I agree. But how about we let schools and students decide on this?”

          We ARE letting them decide on this. Nobody is forcing the universities to do what is necessary for their foreign students to comply with the law.

          This change isn’t about the rule of law, in the sense that returning to the rule of law would be even harder on the foreign students. The rule of law says, more than one non-proctored remote class, and hasta la vista, baby.

          But I don’t think you’re complaining that the administration isn’t proceeding directly to deportation, so you’ve got a bit of nerve appealing to the rule of law in a case where you want policy that’s FURTHER from the rule of law.

          1. The government is massively distorting the incentives from the status quo. This ain’t not nudge, it’s a shove.

            Helluva thing to pretend this isn’t happening.

            The rule of law says, more than one non-proctored remote class, and hasta la vista, baby.
            No, it does not.

            1. “No, it does not.”

              Yes, it does. Bernstein links to the law above in the OP, and that IS the substance of it, has been since 2012.

              Now, you may want to quibble that that’s not the law, it’s the regulation. The regulation purports to be faithfully applying the law, it has no other justification for being legally binding. And this regulation originated during the Obama administration, so if you think it’s a dishonest reading of the statute, you know who to take it up with.

              1. The regulation purports to be faithfully applying the law, it has no other justification for being legally binding.
                This applies just as well to the status quo ante regulation.

                The rules changed during COVID to maintain the status quo for students as the schools changed their policies.

                From the point of view of schools, professors, granting agencies, and students, this change massively perturbs the status quo from what it’s been for ages.

              2. The regulation purports to be faithfully applying the law,

                Sigh. You don’t understand the most basic aspects of administrative law.

                And this regulation originated during the Obama administration,

                Where did you get that idea?

            2. The government is massively distorting the incentives from the status quo.

              It’s changing the rules back to what they were a few months ago. We went through an interim phase where the government granted a special waiver because it thought circumstances warranted that. Now it has concluded that circumstances no longer warrant a waiver.

              Your notion of nudges and shoves seems to be that the government should defer to colleges on whether or not there continues to be an emergency requiring the closure of colleges.

              This is very strange. We’ve had several months in which the government has actually forbidden a great number of businesses from doing business on the justification of an emergency. At no point has the government deferred to the opinion of businesses on whether the emergency justified that – or even sought such opinions.

              But now that the government thinks the emergency no longer justifies closure of colleges, returning the rules to the status quo ante is shoving colleges unfairly ? Colleges are not being ordered to reopen for live classes. They are free to make their own judgement – with plenty of notice too. Why should the government continue to grant emergency favors to colleges, simply because those colleges disagree with the government’s assessment of whether those favors are still justified ?

              1. Oh, come on. Colleges aren’t being ordered to reopen, it’s just being made massively painful for some of their students if they don’t.
                This is authoritarian as hell, don’t pretend it’s not.

                Something changed a few months ago; I’m not buying your formalist myopathy.

                the government should defer to colleges on whether or not there continues to be an emergency requiring the closure of colleges
                The government has been hands off until this point.
                And y’all small government folks should explain why the feds should bigfoot this. They don’t have better info and are farther away from local concerns than more local people.
                I’m all for the government coordinating and providing resources, but how in the world do you rationalize this kind of hammer.

                1. The government has been hands off until this point.

                  By “the government” I meant the government in its various forms, federal, State and local.

                  I’m not so small government that I favor open borders. There is a dispensation in the visa regs to allow foreign students to attend colleges in the US. Fair enough. Why should the government add a dispensation for foreign students who do not need to attend college in the US ?

                  If a college chooses to act in such a way that it does not attract the dispensation, that’s it’s business.

                  Change the frame. Say the government regulates fuel emissions. Some exogenous event drives up oil prices so that the only way to keep gas prices down is to relax the emission regs with a waiver. So the government does that. Then oil prices fall a bit and the government cans the waiver. The oil companies whine that it’ll cost them a bundle to meet the old emission regs because the oil prices are still higher than they’re comfortable with. Who’s right ? Well maybe the government is right tthat the time has come to end the waiver. And maybe it’s wrong.

                  But the oil companies view is not the “market” at work. It’s simply their self interested view. Maybe there shouldn’t be a reg at all. But if there is a reg and if it’s justifiable, then whether circumstances justify waiving it is a government decision, and it’s got zip to do with the “market.”

                  1. Ah. So this is a nativism thing for you.

                    Foreign students coming to the US are not an externality like emissions.
                    Screw you and your know-nothingism then. Not much I can say to you since we have pretty different visions of what’s good for America. Go in peace, and may Borjas bring you validation.

                    1. Obviously foreign students, like all foreigners, are externalities. That’s why we – like everywhere else – have visas and stuff – to regulate the entry of foreigners. Different foreigners may represent net positive or net negative externalities.

                      It has long been the determination of the US government that foreign students who need to be in the US to attend a school that wants to teach them are, on balance, externalities we can handle.

                      That has never been the position for foreigners who do not need to be in the US. Those are called “tourists” and different visa categories apply.

                      And no, your pretend hissy fit did not conceal that you chose to avoid the question.

                    2. They may have externalities (as do we all), but you’re treating them in total as an externality. As though the Visa program is just something that has happened to the US we need to manage.

                      Might as well call them roaches.

                    3. Well clearly they’re not externalities for the schools – they’re customers. But for everybody else they’re externalities, which as I mentioned, may be positive or negative.

                      So roaches would be inaccurate. Perhaps spiders. Who have their good points, and their bad points. And opinions may differ on which is which.

                      You should try to be less emotional. Just as a Frenchman is a foreigner and an externality in the US, you are a foreigner and an externality in France. I have always thought it the height of bad manners to complain to the French that they have not done enough to conforn their society to my preferences.

                2. The ICE rules have not had the major effect on reopening decisions at least not as been explained to our faculty.

                  The only considerations discussed have been what would be reasponsible action

                  1. The effects I’m seeing are a bunch of labs getting really worried they’re going to lose a bunch of their personnel shortly.

              2. “Your notion of nudges and shoves seems to be that the government should defer to colleges on whether or not there continues to be an emergency requiring the closure of colleges.”

                That’s an odd way of framing it, as it gives the game away. ICE doesn’t have any power to tell colleges whether COVID is an emergency requiring the closure of colleges. They have to defer to college in any event, since ICE as an immigration enforcing entity doesn’t tell domestic colleges a god damn thing.

                But I do think this shows what the ICE regulations are really about, which we all know. The President is pushing to open the economy up as quickly as possible to improve his electoral chances. Lacking the power to force a divided Congress to do anything, he’s used a familiar and (I guess he thought) easy target, foreign students, to force the hands of immigrant-sympathetic universities. Lame.

                “We’ve had several months in which the government has actually forbidden a great number of businesses from doing business on the justification of an emergency.”

                I didn’t understand the feds to have done that, but maybe I missed some order. Our shut downs were at the local or state level. It would be odd for the feds, or the states for that matter, to mandate that businesses remain open. Again, I think that’s one reason the President is trying to use ICE, of all people, to enforce openings on a subset of employers.

                1. Disregard last comment. I did not read your clarification to Sarcastro (“By “the government” I meant the government in its various forms, federal, State and local.”) prior to posting.

                2. That’s an odd way of framing it, as it gives the game away. ICE doesn’t have any power to tell colleges whether COVID is an emergency requiring the closure of colleges. They have to defer to college in any event, since ICE as an immigration enforcing entity doesn’t tell domestic colleges a god damn thing.

                  That’s an odd way of reframing it. Obviously ICE does not tell the colleges to open or close. That’s for the colleges to decide in the light of the environment they see before them, financial. educational, health and regulatory.

                  All ICE does is say “we think this is an emergency sufficient for us to temporally waive on of the regs that may affect your business” or “we don’t think this is an emergency sufficient for us to temporally waive on of the regs that may affect your business.”

                  If ICE doesn’t think there’s an emergency sufficient to justify waiving the regs, that is ICE’s decision. If the colleges want to stay shut, that’s their decision. They can have different views on how much of an emergency there is. And ICE’s view is decisive on whether there’s an emergency which justifies the reg-waiving, And – absent State action – the college’s view is decisive on whether to open or close.

                  1. “we think this is an emergency sufficient for us to temporally waive on of the regs that may affect your business” or “we don’t think this is an emergency sufficient for us to temporally waive on of the regs that may affect your business.”

                    You’re making an is argument in a ought thread.

                    Your is argument belongs in the thread about the lawsuit. (I address it above anyhow)

                    1. No I think I’m saying it ought to be the government which decides on whether there’s an emergency sufficient to waive government regulations. I have no objections at all to the legislature providing bounds to the government’s discretion, capable of being adjudicated in court.

                      But I have to say that the notion that if the government doesn’t think there is an emergency, some private person should be able to insist in court that no, there really is, strikes me as quite novel.

                  2. “That’s for the colleges to decide in the light of the environment they see before them, financial. educational, health and regulatory.”

                    I think it would be worthwhile to have some brass at ICE called before Congress to talk about why they don’t see an emergency when universities are voluntarily opting to have no in-person classes, and whether that decision came from on high to induce colleges to open.

                  3. If ICE doesn’t think there’s an emergency sufficient to justify waiving the regs, that is ICE’s decision.

                    And this is a terrible decision, made by people who don’t have a grasp of the implications.

                    No one is arguing that ICE can’t do it. Rather, some of us are arguing that it is stupid, harmful, and probably deliberately malicious.

                    No one has yet described any significant benefit from the decision other than “we get to kick some foreigners out.”

                  4. Lee,
                    Please give us the names of any top 50 colleges and universities that had planned to stay shut in the fall prior to two weeks ago.

        3. “The argument that visas can just be turned on and off based on a given year’s education events is ignorant;”

          ?? Student visas are supposed to be “turned on and off” based on whether or not the recipient is attending school in the US.

          1. 1) this purposivist argument is different from the argument that there’s no burden on yanking a visa for a student who is not attending in-person classes because they can get it back when in-person starts back up

            2) I don’t believe that is the purpose of student visas.
            A) Attending school in the US can be parsed a number of ways; only one of those requires physical presence.
            B) What is the benefit to the US of having a student-visa exchange program? Seems to me it’s about international commity/soft power and getting access to high-quality students. Neither of those requires in-person presence.
            C) The purpose of this new guidance has nothing to do with aligning the visa program with anything anyhow; it’s to pressure US schools, public and private, to reopen.

            1. “What is the benefit to the US of having a student-visa exchange program? Seems to me it’s about international commity/soft power and getting access to high-quality students. Neither of those requires in-person presence.”

              This is the level of generality two-step. That might have been a goal of the law, but it’s not “the” law.

              “The purpose of this new guidance has nothing to do with aligning the visa program with anything anyhow; it’s to pressure US schools, public and private, to reopen.”

              That may be the motivation, but it none the less does align the visa program better with the law, anyway.

              1. TiP is the one making the purposivist argument. Your argument is I guess that the previous guidance was against the law?

                Not even ICE is arguing this aligns better with the law. Indeed, I’d wager you’ve not actually seen the law, and are just filling it in how you want it to be.

            2. S-zero,
              You are arguing about the window dressing the the student visa program not its core.
              Of course the window dressing is there. But that is not its purpose.

              Though I do not know, I’d guess that the original thinking was to capture the best minds worldwide for the US economy.

              1. We agree; that’s what I was trying to get at with ‘getting access to high-quality students.’

      2. “a student doesn’t really need to be in the US at all to take their classes”

        Is that right? There’s things like time zone differences, conditions in their home countries, etc.

        1. Time zone changes? As somebody remarked, only a person who’s never worked night shift could make that argument. And finding a good internet connection in their home country is supposed to be harder and more expensive than traveling to, and staying in, the US?

          But I’ll concede this: There will be cases, a few cases, where accommodation might be appropriate. But why can’t the accommodation be the university holding a few in person classes, rather than the DOJ completely waiving application of the law?

          1. That’s an amazingly blithe dismissal. Lots of people would have their lives significantly disrupted if they had to switch to a night shift.

            1. When would switching to night shift be more disruptive than traveling to a foreign country for 9 months?

          2. That “someone” was you, if I recall.

            Nice bit of hand-waving away of problems other people might have.

            1. You recall wrongly, it was me.

          3. And finding a good internet connection in their home country is supposed to be harder and more expensive than traveling to, and staying in, the US?

            Sometimes, yeah. You know, like countries that censor the Internet?

      3. Given that, with no in person classes at all, a student doesn’t really need to be in the US at all to take their classes, it’s hard to argue that 100% online learning ever should qualify one for an education visa.

        As you blithely wave away any difficulties in taking online classes while living in another country.

        Look, Brett. You just want to kick foreigners out. That’s all.

      4. Brett — look at the percentages: https://www.chronicle.com/article/A-New-Policy-Would-Upend/249145?cid=wcontentlist_hp_latest

        Illinois Institute of Technology 73.1%
        Carnegie Mellon U. 56.4%
        Northeastern U. 53.6%
        Columbia U. 44.6%
        U. of Southern California 32.3%

        1. Yes, if the universities insist on doing going solid remote learning, no exceptions, they stand to lose a lot of students. Maybe they shouldn’t chose to do that?

          1. Maybe they shouldn’t chose to do that?

            Well, I guess Brett Bellmore and the medical and educational experts at ICE know better.

      5. “Death rates have declined dramatically from their April peak”

        In some states; they have been constant in CA for months”
        “and running just a few in person classes isn’t that burdensome”

        MIT and Harvard stopped all in-person instruction

        “Many academic institutions never stopped running them.”
        How is that working out for their students and faculty now? Facts please, not your opinion.

    3. “All I read says this is a directive from the White House as part of their agenda to force schools to reopen.” I haven’t read that, but given how many reporters have asserted this old regulation is “new,” I wouldn’t trust their reporting in any event.

      1. “…but given how many reporters have asserted this old regulation is “new,” I wouldn’t trust their reporting in any event.”

        I followed the NPR link. It cited to the new modifications to temporary exemptions for non immigrant students. The link they shared is to ICE’s press release about it here. In it ICE “announces modifications” to the SEVP, to be followed by USDHS “plans to publish procedures and responsibilities in the Federal Register as a Temporary Final Rule.”

        I don’t assume that just because you disingenuously characterize one media report, everything you say is disingenuous. I’m willing to forgive your error. You should, too.

    4. “I mean, shouldn’t the market decide better than top-down federal hostage taking?”

      Ha ha. The Devil will quote Hayek for his purposes.

      1. As usual, you take me for a cartoon I am not.

        I’m not one to discard Hayek out of hand. I’ve said many times how badass markets are when properly used.

        1. That you think a market is like a tool you can use, is itself kind of a pretense of knowledge problem.

          1. Hayek had a function view of markets as well; they were an instrumental good to maximize distributive outcomes, not a positive good in and of themselves.

            1. I never said markets were innately good or bad, or even that they should be used for one purpose or not another, what I’m saying is that you can’t think of markets like a machine that you can run, choosing the inputs and expecting certain outputs out of the other end of a black box.

              1. ICE is the one screwing with the inputs in order to attempt to engineer an outcome.

                But you’re also wrong about markets as tools. There are lots of examples of created markets that worked great. Why wouldn’t they – the incentives are easy to replicate. One of my favorites is the Cassini Resource Exchange: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1009990907796

          2. That you think a market is like a tool you can use,

            What the hell else is it?

            1. I’m not going to do Hayek justice in a blog comment. I would, for your edification, read his address upon receiving the Nobel Prize.

              https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/economic-sciences/1974/hayek/lecture/

    5. Does Congressional inaction imply a lack of emergency?
      Answer: Yes

      Do you think this change comes from ICE’s OGC?
      Answer: Who knows. Is that actually a requirement.

      We totally agree. Schools and universities can and must reopen.

      1. 1) I don’t think it does; Congress is not great at responding to exigencies.

        2) Prof. Bernstein argues a legal requirement; a loss of authority. That’s a made up argument that does not hold water; This is not legal it’s about policy.

        3) Can and must? Naw, just should. I’m not so prideful to think my risk assessment should rule over everyone’s. Neither should the President’s (though for public institutions, we could talk)

    6. What the federal government is doing is trying to prevent fraud. The fraudulent practice of charging for expensive in-person instruction with supporting facilities and only providing substandard online instruction with no supporting facilities like labs and libraries.

      1. So, who are they lying to for it to be fraud? This was out in the open and in keeping with all applicable regulations until this change.

        substandard online instruction with no supporting facilities like labs and libraries.
        Ah. So you just don’t know what you’re talking about and are making things up. A bunch of schools are making massive investments in online infrastructure to allow library access and lab research to continue.

        1. I do know my son who is currently on summer break thinks his springtime online education is substandard and wants to attend in person instruction in the fall.

          And even if all of them are making an investment, I can tell you as an IT professional that it’s a complex multi-year effort to roll out such an investment. My son will graduate before any such investment is able to roll out.

          When the Obama administration moved to shut down for profit education they didn’t exactly say they were committing fraud but they did say that they were taking advantage of students, and didn’t have their best interest at heart. Let’s roll with that standard.

          1. Yeah, COVID sucks. It’s not fraud.
            Indeed, doesn’t your son’s experience mean that the pressure for schools to open already exists?

            It’s a pretty difficult argument that closing for COVID doesn’t have the student’s best interests in mind. I’m pretty sure schools would like to be open if all were well; not many are into this at-home thing in any profession (though certainly a few are into it)

            1. It’s a pretty difficult argument that closing for COVID doesn’t have the student’s best interests in mind.

              Au contraire. As has been pointed out elsewhere it’s much easier to characterise closing for COVID as :

              (a) contrary to the students’ best interests, and

              (b) deferential to the interests, or at least deferential to the feelings of, a particular, favored, group of suppliers – fat wheezy old professors. and fat wheezy old admin staff

  3. Precisely. There is no controversy here. This is just agit-prop by the socialist brigades designed to reinforce the narrative that “Orange Man Bad” and “racccccisssssttttt immigration.”

    1. Open wider, Jimmy. Focus on the stretching exercises. January will be here before you know it.

      1. Reverend, to state the obvious, your “preaching” looks more like an inquisition.

        1. AK really isn’t going to like the Grand Reset.

          1. What’s your understanding of the Grand Reset, why AK won’t like it, and when do you think it will occur?

  4. If a student with chronic illness can stay on a reduced course load for 12 months, why not those adversely affected by the chronic illness of the public?

    It must be some sort of reflex. In case of emergency, throw the foreigners under the bus.

    1. Again, the proposed rule allows them to keep their visas if they have even one, count ’em, one, in person class. That’s not reduced enough for you?

      1. If you’re not going to read the article, at least you could read the headline.

        1. How about if I don’t JUST read the article or headline?

          SEVP modifies temporary exemptions for nonimmigrant students taking online courses during fall 2020 semester

          “Nonimmigrant F-1 students attending schools adopting a hybrid model—that is, a mixture of online and in person classes—will be allowed to take more than one class or three credit hours online. These schools must certify to SEVP, through the Form I-20, “Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status,” certifying that the program is not entirely online, [My emphasis.] that the student is not taking an entirely online course load this semester, and that the student is taking the minimum number of online classes required to make normal progress in their degree program. The above exemptions do not apply to F-1 students in English language training programs or M-1 students pursing vocational degrees, who are not permitted to enroll in any online courses.”

      2. Or hire a proctor. That’s the other alternative here, hire someone to watch them take their on-line courses. That shouldn’t be that expensive.

  5. “In any event, given that the regulation is clear that foreign students may not stay in the U.S. on student visas if they are taking online only classes, and given that universities knew they may have to go all online this Fall, why are so many university “leaders” acting like the government actually enforcing the rule once the immediate emergency has passed is a complete surprise?”

    I think they were expecting ICE to extend the exception so long as there is a pandemic that affects how people go to school, and since this entire discussion is about decisions by universities to move towards online courses, why wouldn’t the exception continue?

    1. Technically there is no longer a pandemic either according to death statistics. The reality is that if you are still relying on emergency measures you are incompetent or a totalitarian.

      1. LOL who writes this shit? The “reality” is that if you disagree with Allutz, you must either be incompetent or a totalitarian. Ok.

        Schools have to manage human beings (teachers) and sell to customers (students). Both of them are made up of flawed human beings. The institutions have to pander to their employees and their customers, even if their employees and customers take positions that are not rational, and certainly have to pander even if their employees and customers don’t think exactly like you do. A school may not want to go to online classes, but has no choice because professors are more scared than you are about COVID. If you follow them on twitter, some of the conspirators here have complained about the prospect of returning to physical classes as quickly as, say, the President believes is appropriate.

        If you really don’t understand that human problems can’t be solved simply by insisting on strict rationality by people, it makes me think you’ve never sold anything to anybody, and that you’ve never had to manage an employee.

        1. Seems to me you are defending inmates running the asylum. If professors and students are irrational babies and you pander to them you are an institution that does not serve the public interest and all your subsidies should be removed, not only the special VISA rules.

          I’m not talking just about universities, I’m also talking about governments and legislatures as well. See, for example, where the Wisconsin Supreme Court forced the governor to work with the legislature to enact ongoing C19 measures because the emergency period had expired. That is the right and correct way all governments should be proceeding at this time.

          1. “Seems to me you are defending inmates running the asylum.”

            First off, I happen to agree with you that much of the COVID shit is overblown. But I’m a fucking lawyer, not an epidemiologist. I’m trying to be humble enough to understand that just because I read the right people on Twitter, or caught a Medium article that really persuaded me, I may not be the expert of humankind, and just because other people do things differently than how I would do it, doesn’t make them “irrational babies”. My partners often make business and employment decisions that I think are overblown. Reasonable minds can, in fact, disagree.

            Second, here, there’s nothing irrational about an aged professor not wanting to be physically around a bunch of 20 somethings. And sometimes employers have to pander to their employees. That’s true even of “public interest” institutions. Moreso, really, because in addition to having to pander to employees, they also have to pander to the stakeholding public.

            1. Employers who wish to remain in business — in an increasingly competitive marketplace — had better be concerned about their CUSTOMERS….

              1. And yet here the government is the one they need to be concerned about, not their students.

                Huh. Almost as though this is authoritarian nonsense.

                (But see: Volokh’s discussions about profs getting in trouble for not adhering to their CUSTOMERS’ rhetorical desires)

              2. In the case of higher education, the customer is largely the federal government, which subsidizes them with both a guaranteed loan program and a student VISA program.

                1. Check school budgets again, Allutz.

                  1. 69% of students in 2019 took out student loans. Of those 82% were direct federal loans, 17% FFEL loans, 1% Perkins loans. Lending in 2019 was approximately $259 billion in total, almost the same amount as contributed by State and Local Governments of $301 Billion. Unsubsidized tuition payments are dwarfed by both numbers at only $91 Billion.

                    1. That doesn’t make the government the customer.

                    2. A subsidized loan doesn’t mean the government hands the money to the students for free. It just means they, for example, defer some interest payments until after school is over. They still charge interest, collect money, etc. As recently as 2016, the feds were still making a profit on student loans. The President does not think the federal government should make money off student loans, which is stupid but at least he had that in common with Hillary Clinton.

                    3. I also don’t think the feds should make money from student loans.

                      Because they should not issue them.

                    4. I think there’s an argument for the government having no role in public education at all, but that argument lost decades ago and isn’t going anywhere fast. We’re very close to 51% of the country thinking higher ed for the public should be paid for entirely by the government. I hope that doesn’t happen.

                      But when the feds are running massive deficits, I don’t think we have the luxury to fight government programs that make money. I can understand opposing government hand outs but why shouldn’t the government operate as a proprietary seller if it’s profitable? Are you opposed to municipal utilities?

                      Are you sure you’ve never applied for a federal loan, or a loan guaranteed by the feds?

                2. Guaranteed federal loans were eliminated a decade ago. Now the government’s involvement is directly as a lender, some subsidized (with some of the interest terms waived during college) some not. And for the unsubsidized loans, the government isn’t subsidizing anybody. It makes money, since the government has also made it harder for the borrowers to default. (That’s true of the subsidized loans as well, I believe.)

                  A VISA program is not a subsidy. The federal government, through immigration laws, prohibits American employers and sellers from engaging directly with foreigners under certain circumstances. The VISA program is a tiny exemption from this centrally planned regulation over commercial conduct.

            2. I am also a lawyer, not an epidemiologist. The problem with me trusting epidemiologists is they have not articulated a compelling case for continued actions. Even though the virus is a disease, and thus we should listen to experts on disease when discussing its symptoms and how it is spread, the response to the disease implicates things other than merely academic discussions on epidemiology.

              That is why there are different political responses to C19: Flatten the curve, quarantine until eradication, ignore that it exists, all these political options lie on a spectrum of possible responses to the disease. Epidemiologists are not experts on which of those is the best solution for the country as a whole. Is it better to sacrifice the future prosperity for 18-40 year olds to save a number of 65+ people? There is no scientific answer, there are only value judgements.

              1. So you don’t agree with NToJ’s humility.

                Bold move.

                1. I’m saying even if someone is humble they still need to make value judgements factoring in the epidemiology of the disease, but no scientist actually has an objective answer to the problem. The closest a scientist could be to “objectively” solving Covid decision-making is if one announced, truthfully, that he would have 300 million does of an effective C19 vaccine available by the end of July, or 20 million doses of an almost 100% effective treatment for C19 by the end of July.

                  If that were the case you could arguably say, “science has decided what political solution to choose, and that choice is to wait until the end of July.” But our scientists aren’t close to having those levels of definitive solutions. The C19 situation isn’t likely to evolve significantly between now and December, and we don’t really know when it will change.

                  In addition, given their responses to the C19 situation, it seems to me that our public health experts might be experiencing a sort of institutional malaise similar to what has happened at NASA, which hasn’t been able to put people into space on its own for over a decade now.

              2. If it was me? I’d never have done a total shut down and would have just focused on separating the vulnerable populations from the rest of us. But people are allowed to disagree with me.

                1. Yeah, because you and Sweden have bad ideas.

                  Note that neither the U.S. as a whole nor any state has remotely done a “total shut down.” The essential business exceptions that every stay-at-home order has included are quite significant. But note that other than Sweden and countries that stopped coronavirus before it started — which the U.S. blew its chance at doing in February — every one has employed the stay-at-home approach.

            3. Wait wait. NToJ. You say 1) you are a lawyers and 2) in the same breath that you’re humble?

              1. No. Per the attorney’s unwritten creed, I properly hedged. “trying to be humble” is not the same thing as “humble”. I did not have sexual relations with that woman.

  6. Come on, David, try harder. You quote the previous rule and then ignore it: “F-1 students may be eligible to take more than one online class to maintain their status as long as the class is physically proctored or monitored by a school employee.” The press release for the proposed amended rules–and make no mistake, this is a new rule that must be promulgated as a “temporary final rule,” and not just an end of a previous waiver–will not allow for F-1 students to take more than one online class, even if physically proctored or monitored by a school employee.

    1. Totally incorrect. One class, with one physical employee present proctoring, is sufficient to maintain one’s student visa.

      1. Ah, technically, that’s only sufficient if there weren’t more of their classes available that way; They can only take as many remote classes as are necessary, they can’t opt to take a class remotely if it’s available for physical presence.

  7. Rescinding student visas can be a great plank in defunding the higher education liberal indoctrination industrial complex. I would favor just ending them all together.

    1. Yep. And after that the high schools are next. Right, Jimmy?

      1. Naw, just the Teacher’s Union and their job protectionism. The anti-american curriculum would fall after that.

      2. I would support ending the government monopoly over K-12 education through vouchers and scholarships. Some type of educational system, partially funded by public dollars, is OK (and required by some state constitutions). But what isn’t OK is using these institutions and systems to engage in systematic liberal indoctrination. That is what must end. Defunding higher education is a great first step.

  8. I am a retired chemist, and my wife a retired nurse. Chemistry, nursing, physics, engineering, zoology, botany, and geology with possibly several other disciplines require actual physical labs because they deal with actual physical shit.
    I know that communication, journalism, history, psychology, economics, English, business, sociology, and other disciplines offering a BA in BS do not deal with physical reality, but rather just delve into the imagination. They can almost certainly be done online.
    But do you want your doctor to have only learned from a computer? Or the guy who designed the bridge you are crossing?

    1. I know that communication, journalism, history, psychology, economics, English, business, sociology, and other disciplines offering a BA in BS do not deal with physical reality, but rather just delve into the imagination.

      I’m a trained physicist, and once thought like that. Having left the fold, I now realize that past me and present you were/are ignorant snobs.

      1. “A trained physicist”
        Same here; in what area?

        1. Thermodynamic cosmology. Black holes colliding and whatnot. Also dabbled a bit in HEP.

          Didn’t make it to my PhD; always better at talking than math. Over my prof’s objections, I dropped out with a gentleman’s masters. Went to law school, practiced a bit and now I’m a bureaucrat.

  9. I am quite surprised that such a sloppy article would be written here. No one thinks that the rule was new, the issue is that the temporary suspension of the rule was “This temporary provision is only in effect for the duration of the emergency”. The emergency has not be formally lifted, and the virus is spreading more now then it was in April. Universities relied on the written document from the government, and now the government is changing the rules with very little advance warning. If they said now that the rule would go back to normal in January, that would be quite different, but everyone has already made plans for the fall semester based on what the government said.

    1. “and the virus is spreading more now then it was in April.”

      It isn’t clear that is true, rather than just being an artifact of increased testing; Death rates have dropped dramatically from April, so either the virus is suddenly much less virulent, or testing is just uncovering mild cases that were ignored before.

      Given that the virus hasn’t mutated all that much, I’d say it’s just the increased testing. Of course it’s going to look like it’s spreading, if you suddenly have the resources to test anybody who has a sniffle, instead of only testing people who are at death’s door.

      1. I’d say it’s just the increased testing.

        That’s dishonest BS and you know it. The rate of positive tests is up.

        1. And yet, the death rate is way down.

      2. It isn’t clear that is true, rather than just being an artifact of increased testing/

        Come on Brett, you’re smarter than this. Our per-test positivity rate is remarkably high. Our death rate has stopped dropping and is increasing.
        Both of those put the lie to the testing-driven canard Trump is pushing.

        1. Sarcastro, I’ve looked at plenty of data on death rates. The rates are way, way down from April, and have largely been stagnant for about a month. Yes, they’re up a little this week, they may very well be down a little next week. But they’re nothing like what they were in April, and show little prospect of getting there.

          1. I’ve looked at plenty of data on death rates.

            And judging by your comments at Balkinization haven’t understood the numbers very well.

            1. Yeah, yeah, it’s not like I work with numbers for a living, or anything like that; I’m the only totally innumerate engineer on the planet. See my reply to commenter_XY, below.

              1. Brett,

                Trying to excuse your blunders by citing your credentials is silly.

          2. If this is to be believed – which is of course an “if” :

            https://twitter.com/kerpen/status/1281811501465186309

            there has been a large chunk of backfilling of deaths from two months or more in the currently reported death figures. Hence any current “uptick” may simply be an artefact of statistical folk doing a catch up, perhaps of “probables.

            1. s/b “from two months or more ago”

      3. Brett….a couple of points to ponder.

        The number of daily deaths have dropped very dramatically from April to today – by more than half. That is true. The number of deaths is creeping upward now, and we should be very, very wary. We don’t actually know about the death rate, since we don’t know how many people were actually infected. We now know there is a huge pool of asymptomatic people. So the actual death rate from KungFlu is quite low, and probably hasn’t changed all that much. In any event, overall mortality from KungFlu is <1%.

        There are no less than 32 different strains of the Wuhan coronavirus in circulation now, in the USA.

        Is increased testing finding more positive asymptomatic KungFlu cases? Yes.
        Is there an increase in transmitted cases of KungFlu? Yes.

        This is a case where you, and Sarcastr0 and bernard11 are all correct.

        WRT to test rate positivity for KungFlu…the rate is trending upward in 18 states. That really isn't what we should be focusing on, quite honestly. We should be focusing on the counties within those states where KungFlu is spiking. The good news here, when you actually look at the data is that out of 3,147 counties in the US, we really only need to worry about ~200 of them.

        1. At last, a reasonable comment. Thanks!

          You can see some handy graphs here, at Don’t Worry About The Vase.

          As you can see, the number of positive tests have started up considerably in the South, to a lesser extent in the West, a little bit in the Midwest, and are stable or declining in the NorthEast and NY.

          At the same time the death rates have dropped to basically zero in NY, and are stagnant or declining everywhere else except the South, which is showing a very modest rise.

          What we’re looking at here, IMO, is that NY and to a lesser extent the NE have burned through their vulnerable populations the hard way, and are essentially no longer at risk. Arguably they’ve reached herd immunity, they’re not going to spike. But they got there the ugly way.

          All other regions have effectively “flattened the curve”, but by doing so have retained vulnerable populations, and not gotten to herd immunity. So they’re either not seeing a decline in deaths anymore, or in the South, (Where I live.) are actually seeing a modest rise.

          But you can see the climb in positive tests vastly exceeds the climb in deaths in the South, which is really just in the range of a modest fluctuation at this point, can’t really be described as a “spike”.

          So, much as I’d like to say we could relax here in Greenville, it’s actually the Northeast and NY that’s out of trouble at this point, having just crashed through the hard way.

          Basically, barring a vaccine, the area under all those death curves is going to end up the same. That’s what “flattening the curve” implies. We just traded our economies for having people die later.

          1. None of your conclusions have any basis in medical science. We are no where close to herd immunity, and there is still no evident that antibodies will infer long term immunity.

            1. First, there’s some evidence for T cell mediated immunity to this virus, not just antibody based immunity. And it’s really much, much too soon to say whether long term immunity will happen or not.

              But the numbers are there: Positive tests here in the South are way up, deaths are hardly up at all. Either the virus has become much less virulent, or expanded testing is reaching people with marginal symptoms.

              And, yes, until we have a vaccine, the only way to get immunity to this virus is to be infected, so eventually everybody is going to get it.

      4. The death rate is lower then April because the average age of covid patients is much lower, and our treatment protocols are much better. However there is also signs that covid leaves many people with major chronic issues. Covid does a number on many organs, not just lungs.

        1. It’s not different from influenza in that regard, you know. It CAN cause nasty damage, but mostly doesn’t.

          1. It is very different. The effects are much worse and more common.

          2. Influenza mostly doesn’t. Covid-19 does.

    2. Molly,
      You make a good point. Announcing a change after plans for the fall have been made (though not in final details) at almost all schools, certainly feels unfair.

    3. “no one thinks the rule is new” except for the reporters who reported it as new, and all the people on Facebook who when I posted this were surprised to learn that the rule was not knew given that the media was reporting it as “new.”

  10. Sorry to see Bernstein apparently defending this random bit of cruelty.

    What is the source of the enthusiasm for this rule in the current situation. Is it a pandemic, not a pandemic, not quite a pandemic?

    WTF cares? There is nothing to be gained by forcing these students to leave. The situation with respect to the coronavirus is clearly fluid and unclear. Universities are trying to be cautious and make decisions in the best interests of interested parties.

    Why do the fucking xenophobes have to throw a wrench into things, and create major problems for foreign students, for no good reason.

    Oh. Wait. They like doing that, because any foreigner on US soil is a defilement. Right?

    1. Following rules is “cruelty”. Also leftists love making rules and forcing others to follow them.

      1. This is about changing the rules, not following them.

        1. Its about reverting to the rules.

          The March guidance was temporary, it even included a “we can and will revisit” note.

          1. You’re hiding behind formalism and ignoring the real world.

            Reverting the rules when the conditions have radically changed is hardly a reversion.

            The original guidance change was to mantain the status quo in the face of external conditions.

            Boilerplate language means it’s legal, it does not mean it’s normal. Indeed, your formalism isn’t real since despite your straining to say so, there is no reversion to some baseline here.

          2. Its about reverting to the rules.

            It’s about not extending an exemption for no good reason.

            1. It’s about not extending an exemption for no good reason.

              Agreed. Though we may disagree on how to parse the sentence 🙂

      2. This change is, in fact, deliberate cruelty.

        1. But bernard, at Harvard and MIT, most of the international undergrads (except freshmen and Seniors) were not going to be invited back to campus in any case.
          As for grad students they are registered for research credit that generally requires on campus presence; so they only need a letter from their department chair to satisfy visa requirements

          1. They need more than a letter from their PI – the reg requires a certification by the school. In 5 days.

            The visa getting yanked will suck for the students, undergrad or grad (and some post-docs). It will also suck for the PI’s who count on those students to do the actual research. It will also suck for research agencies in about 10 years when their farm team’s best have been forced to find other careers elsewhere.

            1. They can get that.
              They must register for credit for graduate research. In the meanwhile not the PI but a Dept chair or Dean’s office can and will supply a letter. They only have a problem if their visa is revoked before registration day for the term

              1. I agree – but the Admin folks need to certify (presumably by letter submitted via e-mail) whether this coming semester will have an in-person component right now. And you don’t want to lie on your certifications to the government, even if you don’t have good enough info to know the truth.

                You may know better than I, but some schools have made pretty strong public declarations that they may feel binds them. Which of course means visas end next week.

                1. Almost any grad student signed up for research credit should have no problem getting a legit certification. And departments will lean of research supervisors to meet with students doing non-laboratory research. That is the case at our place.

                  1. Could be. But the PI’s I’m talking to seem legit upset, as is our visa policy office. But maybe it’ll all shake out.

                    I suppose the better way to think of it with all the uncertainty (including the court case) is a needless regulatory risk being created, not a sure thing in either direction.

            2. In fact most PhD students are registered through the summer in any case. So they have no problem.
              The only ones caught in the bind are graduated seniors who have not yet registered for the fall term. Certainly Harvard and MIT will do whatever is necessary to protect these students. I expect most major research universities will do the same.

              1. It looks to me like the certification is not about the summer but the upcoming semester, even though the visa cancellations could start as early as Thursday.

                Not to mention the general bad look the US now has when international students consider our system.

                1. Again, PhD students already through year 1 have no worries – except to pass their qualifying exam. At Harvard they don’t even have that since Harvard did away with the exam some years ago.

                  Second and third year undergrads will have a problem at MIT and Harvard. But they are already unhappy with those schools as they will not be allowed on campus, yet have top pay whatever fraction of full tuition they were paying.

                  I doubt that this make the US look any worse than it did last year at this time.
                  And it is not as if a US student could travel to Europe for school in the fall. For the most part they would not even be let into many of the countries unless they had permanent resident status.

                  Life in the time of the plague sucks.

                2. By the way, you commented about the national and industrial labs (and I’d add hospitals).
                  They have a different problem with visas for post-doctoral fellows and residents, and yes, they are worried, and some of their staff are already adversely affected.
                  Not good.

                  1. I was talking only about university labs – I don’t have much truck with the national labs as of yet, though we’re working some deals.

        2. As true for this as for many rules the left supports.

          1. Even by your complete misunderstanding of the fundamentals of policymaking, you’ve argued the left doesn’t care about the costs to individuals of it’s policies.

            But here the right does care about the cost – *that’s what they’re deliberately seeking out*.

            1. And that’s important to you now because this policy is (supposedly) bad for foreign students — because their universities can’t be bothered to follow rules.

              When things are bad for Americans … whatever, change the subject.

              1. The universities have been following the rules. What are you talking about?

                I care about this because it is bad for America and Americans.

                Quit wrapping your nonsense in the flag.

                1. All universities need to do is follow the updated rule and it’s no problem for anyone. Do what a university does: teach courses in person.

                  It’s not bad for America unless you think universities are bad for America. It’s not cruel unless universities decide to screw over their foreign students.

                  Foreigners treated badly, biggest problem in the world!!! Americans treated badly, just another day under the leftist boot heel.

                  1. Sure and just give me the money and no one gets hurt. Begging the question on hostage taking is quite a move.

                    Foreigners at American institutions help America.

                    1. They could just follow the rule, like always. Dumb drama about having to follow the rule, like always, being “hostage taking” is exceedingly dumb.

                      I have to wear a shirt in the grocery store! I’ll starve!! Why do they hold me hostage like this!!!!

  11. why are so many university “leaders” acting like the government actually enforcing the rule once the immediate emergency has passed is a complete surprise?

    Because it’s hard to think of a prior administration that made completely gratuitous decisions like this, and people still haven’t adjusted to that. Whether we’re talking Bush, Clinton, Reagan, Obama, or anyone else, when they made bad decisions there was virtually always a reason one could point to for those decisions. To please an interest group, to save money, to achieve a stated policy goal. But this decision by ICE serves no purpose at all.

    There’s no lobby pushing for this policy. It’s not good for the budget. Or the economy. And it doesn’t contribute to any goal that the administration professes to have.

    1. David, all a university needs to do to comply is to have int’l students take one non-online class, or one online class proctored by an employee. It may even be enough to have one independent study with an in-person meeting or two. There is in fact a rationale for this, which is that fraud is rampant in student visas, which is why the rule exists to begin with.

      1. fraud is rampant in student visas, which is why the rule exists to begin with.

        If ICE has suddenly decided this is the time to address visa fraud, maybe they should mention that in their guidance, if that’s really the thinking. Rather than requiring you to speculate on their behalf.

        The jeopardy here is new. And it’s causing no shortage of heartburn for students and profs.

        As of yet, the pro-forma accommodations you’re describing is not yet being adopted by administrators, though I hope they will in the end.

        1. Well, the reason for the rule to begin with is visa fraud. I’ve worked with people trying to find a way to stay in the U.S. after, e.g., being an au pair, and the easiest way is to do a non-degree English language program. But you have to do it in person, which always disappoints those who would be happy to just pay the tuition while being employed off the books. And the schools are required to take attendance, and if you don’t attend enough classes, report you to ICE, at which point your visa should be revoked.

          1. Yeah, it’s pretty great that OPT hasn’t been touched.

            Even better news, I am unaware of an in-person requirement, at least for the narrow area of largely J-1 to H-1B STEM grad students I touch on professionally.

            Doesn’t mean that an Au Pair doesn’t have different requirements. But anti-fraud policies would seem to be somewhat variable.

    2. Shorter version: because Orange Man Bad. Must dramatize bad orange man badness.

      It’s sad to see so many people overdosed on phony drama and now they can no longer remember how to reason like other humans.

      1. Sure, DMN is lying to hate Trump more.

        This is an awful dodge.

  12. I’m trying to see WHY anyone would think Harvard is a superior choice when only taking online courses? The major benefit to Harvard, and others; are the Social connections made there. If it’s all online, how are you going to build those ever important connections to make you successful in Gov’t/Business later? The value of the Diploma? Making Zoom meeting connections, doesn’t have the same cachet.

    1. Harvard’s got some serious resume pull as well. And professional connections via your prof/mentors as well.

      Plus, you know, when we were 18 we all had dreams of getting a great education and thought that more prestigious institutions did that. Dunno how true that is, but high-quality education is definately something they market for.

      1. I’m dubious, you will be able to make much of a mentoring relationship in a chat window, during a zoom meeting type class. The ability to make connections with your class-mates is also out the window. With Grade inflation, Harvard is picky at the front end but, almost no one flunks out once admitted. It does score points for Elitism though. Will the Skull and Bones Society meet on-line only? LOL

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