One of the biggest non-stories that usually begins to pop up around this time of year is the "rapidly increasing cost" of a college education. (See this MSN story for a prime example. Headline:"Costs Soar at Public Universities"). The DLC, of course, has an answer: more federal money in return for limits on tuition increases. Now, I'm certainly no expert on the intricacies of federal education funding, and it might be that there are some good things in the proposal, but the idea that a university education is out of reach for seems to me faintly ludicruous.
According to the National Center on Education Statistics, average tuition in the US for four year, public universities was $5,038. (Private 4-year schools ran $17,777 and 2-year public schools ran $1,847). Some states are a good bit more expensive - Massachussetts is over $7,000, while New Hampshire is over $8,000 a year - but some are much lower, too: Georgia is less than $4,000 a year, Florida around $2,600, etc. (Note that I don't include room and board in the "costs", since whatever you're doing, you'll have to have a place to live and pay for food - it's silly to count that in with the "cost" of college). But to say that students can't afford those costs for a college education just isn't true. Even if you're a student with no help from parents or others, you can get yourself through college (even if you have to maybe take a couple of extra years to do it).
None of this is meant to defend universities per se, but merely to suggest that there just isn't an affordability "crisis" in American higher education.