For months, the establishment left has been blaming soaring prices on “greedy capitalism” and for months, their constituency has been lapping it up. In reality, prices are high because of federal government intervention in the market, sanctions which have skewed competition, and runaway inflation thanks to irresponsible monetary policy by the fed which has printed trillions over the last two years.
Instead of stopping the hemorrhaging and reigning in the federal reserve, last week, the Biden administration decided to take it a unilateral step further — ensuring prices skyrocket and inflation continues — by printing even more money to pay off student loan debt.
The earliest estimates were said to be around $300 billion, then that figure went up to $500 billion, and now the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business estimates student debt forgiveness will cost up to $1 trillion and could fuel an incentive for even more debt in the future!
“We estimate the program will cost about $605 billion over 10 years,” Kent Smetters, Wharton School professor and Penn Wharton Budget Model faculty director said. “However, total plan costs could exceed $1 trillion depending on future details of the income-driven repayment program. There would be almost no downside for virtually all students to participate in the new IDR and to even to take on more debt than before.”
Those who paid off their student loans, never took out student loans in the first place, or never went to college, will be the ones footing the bill. As college grads see their debts forgiven, it will be fast food workers, meat packing plant employees, and factory workers, who are stuck holding the check — many of whom are falling behind on rising utility costs, groceries, and other bills they’ve watched shoot up over the last year.
Yes, the folks who were tricked into taking these loans for degrees which will never get them a job to make enough money to pay them back, certainly deserve our empathy. And yes, the government denying the ability to declare bankruptcy in regard to student loans is highly egregious and the sheer volume of loans and their exceedingly high interest rates would not have happened without this flagrant government act ensuring lenders had almost no risk.
Though these two issues are certainly infuriating and wrong, neither of them gives anyone the right to the product of your labor to use as a remedy for them. These loans will inevitably be paid via taxation or inflation, both of which steal value from the product of your labor either directly through taxation or indirectly through devaluing the dollar via inflation.
Due to the harsh reality of this situation, it has caused quite the uproar among many who are naturally upset at the move which will ensure more inflation, higher prices, and a weaker dollar. The anger is certainly justified.
If you are only angry at student loan forgiveness, you need to look at the government’s track record when it comes to spending your money on killing people.
Earlier this year, using Ukraine as fuel to the inflationary fire that is war spending, Biden asked for $753 billion in military spending and Congress ultimately approved $782 billion. That number is expected to jump to $813 billion before the year’s end.
If we look at billions the US is dumping into Ukraine to finance a proxy war with Russia, that number jumps up even higher and will likely pass $1 trillion before the year’s end.
But, if we look at the “war on terror” — which is failing miserably in Afghanistan with the Taliban regaining power and receiving billions in weapons from the US — student loan debt and Ukraine spending is but a drop in a very deep and very bloody bucket.
As was recently reported, the war in Afghanistan launched in the wake of the 9/11 attacks cost US taxpayers many trillions of dollars. Well over $300 million was spent every single day over the span of two decades.
But that doesn’t begin to account for the total cost of the broader “war on terror.”
According to a study by the National Priorities Project at the progressive Institute for Policy Studies, the U.S. has spent $21 trillion on “militarization, surveillance, and repression,” in the years since 9/11.
Those trillions were spent to fuel the military-surveillance-police-state that has grown astronomically, fueled by the terror war since 9/11.
What do we have to show for it? Certainly not more “Freedom.” In fact, one could easily make the argument that we are far less free now thanks to the military-surveillance-police-state that has come to fruition since 9/11 — and they’d be right.
Since the beginning of the violence, the American people have been told that this war on terror — which largely consisted of US weapons slaughtering innocent women and children — was to protect their “freedom.” In reality, however, this war has made Americans less free by creating an assembly line of terrorists and police state measures ensuring a vicious cycle of rights violations and attacks for generations to come.
All of this bloodshed, death, terrorism, loss of liberty, limbless veterans, PTSD, heroin epidemics, and trillions in taxpayer dollars wasted have been the product of politicians lying to you, while spending your money.
“We didn’t know what we were doing. We didn’t have the foggiest notion of what we were undertaking,” confessed Douglas Lute, Afghan war czar under Bush II and Obama, back in 2015. Jeffrey Eggers—a former Navy SEAL and a staffer for the Bush II and Obama administrations—asked, “What did we get for this $1 trillion effort?”
The answer to that question is nothing, or rather, more accurately, death, suffering, terror — and now a country that is far worse off than before we ever stepped foot in it.
So, if you’re angry about the debt forgiveness plan, good. But if you’re only angry about the debt forgiveness and not the trillions spent in your name to lay waste to the Middle East for decades and construct a massive domestic police state at home — which is ultimately designed to be used on you — then you aren’t paying attention, or you’re a hypocrite. Either way, it has to change.