Empower Wisconsin | May 2, 2022
In what surely is an election-year ploy, President Biden is talking seriously about canceling hundreds of billions of dollars in student loan debt. He’s already extended the long-standing student loan freeze until September. It should go without saying that this is all a really bad idea, but in the liberal land of make-believe, it must be said.
To say it quite well, National Review’s Arjun Singh:
“A Lannister always pays his debts.” So said Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) on the hit TV show Game of Thrones. House Lannister was well-heeled, but prudent all the same. Its members knew that financial discipline was the only guarantor of financial stability.
But like Game of Thrones itself, financial discipline is fiction in America. The U.S. government is $30 trillion in the hole to foreign creditors and continues to spend many billions on fruitless boondoggles — just last week, senators were set to vote on yet another Covid-relief package — and many of its citizens don’t act much different.
In this vein, young people, after drawing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the public purse in student loans, have demanded that not a cent be paid back. It has been the rallying cry of progressives that the Biden administration simply “cancel student debt.” What they mean is, “Mr. President, please wipe $1.747 Trillion off the taxpayer’s balance sheet with the stroke of a pen.”
Biden, though deficient in many respects, is smart enough to know cancellation will equal devastation for the public finances. The real question, however, is not whether student-debt relief will be devastating (it will), but whether it’s really necessary. For those with genuine financial distress, longstanding loan-forgiveness and discharge programs already exist. Unemployed college graduates — they have a measly 2 percent unemployment rate — need no such privilege. After all, America’s job market has exploded since Covid ended. There are now more jobs than workers willing to take them. I am a recent college graduate who found employment; youth should know that anyone can do it. In fact, workers are being bid on by employers in competition for talent. If that’s the experience of blue-collar workers, college graduates should find employment a piece of cake. On student loans, Biden would be right to let them eat cake.
Yet Biden has prevaricated. On April 6 (five days too late), his administration announced it would extend the pause on repayment to August 31. Now, the indebted could spend a whole summer splurging like there’s no tomorrow, only to find an exorbitant bill as that day dawns upon them. The decision, however, is not meant to give them a comeuppance, and may be extended again until after November’s midterms, when Democrats may take youth votes and, thereafter, cease their promised forgiveness. Like students, politicians don’t pay their debts, either.
Read more at National Review.