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How the Student Loan Industry, Trump, and Neoliberals Are Creating a Nation of Serfs


#1

How the Student Loan Industry, Trump, and Neoliberals Are Creating a Nation of Serfs

Binta Baxter

Most of the discussion about student debt in the United States has centered on its excessiveness, the negative impact it has on home-buying for the next generation, various refinancing schemes, and (for the grossly uninformed) how borrowers simply need to ‘pay what they owe.' However, the untold story of student loan debt in the United States is that it is being used as a form of economic terrorism designed to not only redistribute wealth from everyday Americans to the elite, but also to undermine and degrade American democracy as a whole.


#2

The university-industrial complex has been eroding for years. Money rolls into state-of-the-art extracurricular facilities, such as food courts, first class gymnasia, and bloated administrative complexes that serve mainly to congratulate themselves at their awesome salaries. Meanwhile, in the classes grossly underpaid adjuncts and graduate students carry most of the teaching load. I watched over my twenty-five year career how poorly decisions were made. Great to be gone. Fortunately I have no children to suffer through the process. "This country is finished." -George Carlin


#3

If you want to complain, complain about the universities.

The rate of inflation of university tuition and fees runs at more than double the rate of inflation overall. In 2016 dollars, college costs 3x what it did in 1976, whether you're looking at public or private universities. This isn't the result of the "predatory student loan industry", this is the result of colleges and universities realizing that they can get "free money" by encouraging students to borrow while they (the schools) continually jack up the costs.

Let's be honest - does a professor who teaches one course per year warrant a $300,000 salary? No, Liz Warren probably didn't.


#4

Is it possible for student loan debtors to put their student loan payments into an escrow account until their legal concerns are dealt with similar to how renters can put their rent payments into an escrow till their landlord fixes whatever needs fixed on the rental property?

The way I see it universities should be publicly funded and their admission standards need to be increased. Students should have to prove that they are worth taxpayers sending them to college. Sure, that will decrease admission rates. Sure that will decrease the amount of money the universities will be making. Tough tiddly. Learn to adjust your business model to something that society can sustain.


#5

Wow! I thought I was the only one...20 years ago (at 44 yrs old) I returned to school to become a teacher. As a single mom caring for 2 children I worked and took out student loans. Before I finished school I was attacked by 2 pitbulls which left me disabled and unable to fully use my arms (I'd already had double hip replacements but didn't apply for disability for that). I've watch my student loan debt mushroom from $35,000 to $80,000 over the years.
Forget any tax refunds
The treasury takes any money (SSDI) over $750...keeping me in perpetual poverty.
Doctors,are scared to sign permanent disability (against student loan debt) even for those of us on social security disability ins.
Thats the system, folks


#6

Treasury dept. takes any money over $750 per month


#7

Although I am all in for gun control, dog control needs to be elevated to at least as high a priority as gun control when you consider that exponentially more Murkins are injured by dogs each year than by guns. I have several friends who were attacked by dogs as they walked down the street and the dog owners acted as though the attack was the victims' faults.

When TrumpDon'tCare's Medicare time bomb explodes in a couple of years and Medicare is gutted, far fewer Murkins will ever retire. They will remain in their jobs until the day they die, further reducing job opportunities for young Murlkins, making it even harder to pay off student debt.

Student loans are just one piece of the puzzle that is the design for Murkin neofeudalism wherein the 99% own nothing and the 1% own everything.


#8

A nation of wage and interest slaves makes for tidy dependable profits for the 1% - kinda like repressive laws are used to create a steady supply a of perps to justify the police-state - in both instances the lives of the 99% are used to maintain the system of oppression our elected officials also feed off and maintain.

There ain't no justice, just us! No Justice, No Peace!


#9

it also reflects the budget cuts at the state level that deprive universities of funds they would have otherwise received. And where is the money those budget cuts engender going? To corporate tax cuts at the state level. States are being threatened by corporations that they will leave the state (meaning job losses) if they don't get the tax cuts they demand. it's a vicious circle.


#10

When you start trying to filter through "who deserves" and "who does not deserve," you are setting yourself up as an Inquisitioner with somehow the right to determine the life path of others, how they spend their money, their choices etc. That is not what freedom is about. Grant others the rights you would ask for yourself?


#11

This evil, exemplifies the structural evil of the economic system that rules:

Colonize, and claim ownership of, and extract profit from, EVERYTHING and EVERYONE.

There are NO limits to the claims that are / will be made by the "owners" under this structure (a structure that was developed by, and to serve, the "owners").

Currently they claim to "own" our data, our information, our "apps," our education, and our professional development, to name some basics. These strictures circumscribe our lives and existence, and amount to an endlessly encroaching claim over us as humans -- de facto "ownership" of us.

They also claim to "own" the stuff of life, the DNA and genetic materials that code and guide the growth and reproduction of life itself. Most corn, most soy, and endlessly increasing into all other forms of life on Earth are now colonized and "owned" by corporate entities. Patents on engineered animals are now starting, and patents in the human genome are an inevitable development of this ongoing process of colonizing encroachment into the stuff of life itself.

Unless We the People educate ourselves, organize ourselves, empower ourselves, and resist, roll back, and END this form of corporate, colonizing, "ownership" of everything, and everyone.

We must first see it for what it is: entirely illegitimate stealing. From the foundation of this system, in the "enclosure" of what were maintained as socially common lands, and in the "colonization" of "primitive" and "new" worlds by the "civilized" colonizers, including the genocide and enslavement of entire peoples in the process, all the way through to today's claims of "ownership," the entire system is ILLEGITIMATE, and must be seen and understood as such, if we are to ever have any hope of unbinding ourselves, our communities, our children, and our world, from the endlessly grasping clutches of these Frankenstein's monsters, these vampire zombies, these "corporate persons" that operate with "limited liability" on behalf of their "investors."


#12

When the money changers own the temple


#13

Clearly you must have responded to the wrong post. I said nothing about who deserves and doesn't deserve. If you really meant to respond to my post, you're putting words in my mouth.

Low college admission standards in many schools with high freshmen dropout rates are enabling the predatory student loan industry. It doesn't do those students any good at all to let them into college in the first place until they are prepared for it. Work on getting them prepared then let them in. You didn't think that through did you?


#14

"The way I see it universities should be publicly funded and their admission standards need to be increased. Students should have to prove that they are worth taxpayers sending them to college. Sure, that will decrease admission rates. Sure that will decrease the amount of money the universities will be making. Tough tiddly. Learn to adjust your business model to something that society can sustain."

Your entire argument reeks of "deservedness," Mossonrock. In fact, you sound like the people who preach that others should "prove' they deserve food stamps or disability, by really really really being destitute and hungry, so that taxpayer money is not 'wasted." It's the old 'I get to decide for you" mantra.

If that's NOT what you meant, then maybe rephrase. I have worked with at-risk kids for two decades, and let me tell you, it's already a struggle for them without you putting the brass ring even higher out of reach. And BTW, student loans are not taxpayer funded anymore, they are guaranteed by the government, nothing else. They have become a hedge fund and private bank boondoggle.


#15

In the USA, when tax regulations were established, corporations were the original taxpayers. Citizens weren’t charged taxes at all in the beginning. Over time the American tax burden has shifted mainly to individuals. That is part of why public works, institutions and services have declined markedly. Corporations no longer fund essential public services. Individuals simply can’t pay for all government overhead.
Corporations used to pay for employee health care, workers comp, paid vacations and other benefits. Not anymore. Social safety nets have repeatedly been reduced to support excesses in the Pentagon budget instead of basic needs for the American public.You wonder why our lifestyle and public services have declined so alarmingly?
Corporations now get paid to be located in the US instead of contributing to their communities and the country on the same levels as before. Corporations now donate to causes that directly or indirectly benefit their business. This kind of capitalism is unsustainable.
Average citizens are held to unreasonable levels of sustainability on zero financial support. Corporations are raking in profits, using our bridges, roads, infrastructure, a
publicly educated workforce and government services, keeping corporate profits by using loopholes while paying little or nothing for public services.
Even then, major corporations threaten to leave the country if they don’t get their taxes lowered.
“While the 2016 CEO-to-worker compensation ratio of 271-to-1 is down from 299-to-1 in 2014 and 286-to-1 in 2015, it is still light years beyond the 20-to-1 ratio in 1965 and the 59-to-1 ratio in 1989,” the report observes. "The average CEO in a large firm now earns 5.33 times the annual earnings of the average very-high-wage earner (earner in the top 0.1 percent)."


We have got to change the rules for major corporations located in the US. They are not guests here. They are parasites. Major orporations have to pay their own freight and stop driving the country and its people into poverty, while executives live high on the hog.
The US is not a world class economy anymore, it is headed toward a 3rd-world economy. America is no longer exceptional.