This is an op-ed by Bruce Fenton, host of the Satoshi Roundtable and current candidate for the US Senate.
The so-called “fgranting of student loanspledged by President Joe Biden is not just the death of sound economic policy in the United States, it is the death of accountability for many Americans.
The loan forgiveness plan transfers wages and wealth from workers to debtors. This type of agreement breaks the bargain that people have in decision making where decisions have consequences. In this case, we now have people whose decisions have no consequences and others who have paid off their loans who have to pay for those who have not. This is profoundly unfair and unworkable in a moral economic system.
Many people confuse care or compassion with bad economic policies. It is not benevolent or compassionate to help fuel a system that burdens young people with a lifetime of debt and then burdens others for the so-called “forgiveness” of that debt. Taking money from one person to pay another person’s debt is totally immoral and violates the rights of those who are obligated to pay.
The Problems of Government Intervention in Tuition Fees
As with many government projects and policies, this one has unintended consequences. The cycle of the last two decades of tuition fee increase coupled with meincreased government intervention in the tuition purchase process resulted in much higher costs for higher education. Easy money and easy access for students has allowed schools to be much less constrained by market forces on their prices. This causes tuition prices to skyrocket, as we have seen in recent years. Tuition fees are much higher now due to easy access to cheap credit.
Unfortunately, this does little or nothing to help students. Students are burdened with much higher debt and increasingly useless degrees.
Another interesting side effect of this government involvement in the tuition industry is the natural tendency of academics who depend on government paychecks to be more government-friendly.
In recent years we have witnessed a massive expansion in left-dominated universities while, on the other hand, the left seems to be handing out bigger and bigger rewards to its constituents in academia. It seems to me that academia has now become extremely biased, with most institutions of higher learning and most secondary schools being entirely dominated by one political party, and often the most extreme wings of that party.
Bad money at the root
These types of issues are only available in a fiat world. Bad money is the cause. In a world without a broken fiat, tuition would be much cheaper and colleges would have to be much more competitive. Students would be more responsible for their debt and would be more likely to make better decisions.
The biggest victims of this fraud are students. Students are taught that there is something for nothing, that decisions have no consequences and that the world owes them something. Some universities go so far as to convince students that hobby degrees worth going into debt. Personally, I love hobbies – there are many excellent, truly amazing, worthwhile degrees that are basically hobbies – with no real market value. There is nothing wrong with that and there is nothing wrong with someone making the decision to take these courses. But if you enter a field that is not profitable, it is not someone else’s responsibility to pay for it.
I happen to love comics, but it’s definitely not my moral right to tell someone else they have to work to pay for my comics studies. Even if it is a major that would guarantee me a high salary, it is still not the right of a person to demand that another pay for their studies.
Overall, we need more accountability. We need accountability from students and their parents. We must answer to academic institutions that have abused students and put them in debt for worthless degrees. We are accountable to politicians who continually devalue and debase our currency and steal workers’ wages for cronyism. And we need accountability from the media and others who support the system.
Ultimately, we all need to be responsible for our money and our own decisions. Ultimately, we should also keep this responsibility to ourselves and never expect anyone else to pay for our decisions, good or bad.
This is a guest post by Bruce Fenton. The opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.