Student debt is a crime against our nation, weakening our intellectual infrastructure - Any nation’s single biggest asset is a well-educated populace and student debt diminishes that
The Conservative political conviction embodied by all Republican politicians since Mr. Reagan has not been productive to anyone except the financial industry; the 2022 national student loan burden is almost two (2) trillion US dollars https://studentloanhero.com/student-loan-debt-statistics/. The long-term ripple effect has been deep and wide. Many couples have been unable to purchase a home, and many have had to choose not to have children; it's not unusual for professional couples approaching 50 to still be paying off student loans and the accrued interest.
Increasingly the Reagan policy towards support for US higher education has impoverished the hitherto US premier position in both K-12 and graduate programs for native born students; instead foreign born students were enticed by high tech companies https://www.nber.org/digest/jul13/location-choices-foreign-born-phds.
President Reagan and others have a deep antipathy against college students and their propensity to question the powers to be; they ask questions and threaten systems that are, perhaps, due for deep moral reviews. However, in other countries they do not send 40-50% of their high school graduates to college, primarily because many cannot graduate and do not have requisite skills https://www.studying-in-germany.org/germany-international-student-statistics/. Perhaps a revisit to our US Free-Pre-Reagan student funding policies ought to be a bit more realistic and include two years of national service, followed by either a free BA, an AA degree or an apprentice program. There is some truth to the Fox statement that one should really not expect a free public funded BA/MA for basket weaving or other programs that may never offer student a living wage.
Mr. Hartman's citation: Student debt at the scale we have in America doesn’t exist anywhere else in the rest of the developed world. It didn’t exist here in America before the Reagan Revolution. It was created here in the 1980s, intentionally, and we can intentionally end it here and join the rest of the world in again celebrating higher education.
Forty years on from the Reagan Revolution, student debt has crippled two generations of young Americans: over 44 million people carry the burden, totaling a $1.8 trillion drag on our economy that benefits nobody except the banks earning interest on the debt.
This quote by Reagan says a lot: "America “should not subsidize intellectual curiosity.” This is one of the attractions of AI - when human beings are allowed time to think, s**t gets done, and secrets, the ones that government and institutions don't want us to know, are eventually found out. With AI, on the other hand, the general populace can be lulled to sleep, possibly never to awaken to the fact they're being cooked. Control of the media is another tool to keep us from probing our world, which is why I appreciate this Report; it serves to keep me awake and reminds me of what's really going on.
One aspect of the student loan debt is that, along with unpaid taxes and child support, it cannot be eliminated by declaring bankruptcy. This is not mentioned when the loans are taken out. At one level, this has created a class of "indentured servants." Twenty two years ago I went back to college at the age of sixty to get a teaching credential. I took out student loans totaling over fifteen thousand dollars. I taught high school Spanish three years then worked as a substitute teacher the next seventeen years. In 2018, I successfully filed for bankruptcy without the help of a lawyer. The only debt I was not able to eliminate was the remaining eight thousand dollars in student loans. I told the agency that manages the loans that I will not pay the loans off and they can turn them over to a collection agency, or take what ever action they deem appropriate. They just keep sending collection letters.
As much as this right wing talking point is BS, I have talked to people who have paid their debt and they honestly feel this way. No amount of “it’s the right thing to do” arguments will make them support loan forgiveness. So how’s this for an idea: if you already paid your debt a year ago you get 90% of it back. Two years ago you get 80% back, and so on. Then the people who paid their debts won’t feel like they got screwed and this may even get a foot in the door for them to vote blue in the future, which should be the key foundation for a long-term progressive strategy.
I watched a bio-pic on Reagan recently because of curiosity about what flipped his party affiliation. It seems his movie career tanked and then along came General Electric Theater to save him financially. He started hanging-out with the executives. Privilege and corporate poison, what a reason to turn against the disadvantaged!
America needs to start by being decent again. Student debt relief is a start.