This is an opinion editorial by Bruce Fenton, host of Satoshi Roundtable and a current candidate for U.S. Senate.
The so-called “forgiveness of student loans” promised by President Joe Biden is not just the death of sound economic policy in the U.S., it is the death of accountability for many Americans.
The loan forgiveness plan moves wages and wealth from workers to debtors. This type of deal breaks the bargain that people have in decision-making where decisions have consequences. In this case, we now have people whose decisions are not having consequences and other people who paid off their loans who are having to pay for those who did not. This is profoundly unfair and unworkable in a moral economic system.
Many people mistake caring or compassion for bad economic policies. It is not caring or compassionate to help fuel a system that burdens young people with a lifetime of debt and then burdens other people for the so-called "forgiveness" of that debt. Taking money from one person to pay for the debt of another person is completely immoral and violates the rights of those forced to pay.
The Problems With Government Intervention In Tuition
As with many government projects and policies, this one has unintended consequences. The cycle of the last couple decades of increasing tuition costs coupled with increasing government intervention in the tuition purchasing process has led to far higher costs for higher education. The easy money and easy access for students has caused schools to be far less restricted by market forces on their pricing. This causes tuition prices to skyrocket radically as we have seen in the last several years. Tuition is a lot higher now because of easy access to cheap credit.
Unfortunately this does little to nothing to help the students. The students are burdened with much higher debt and degrees which are becoming increasingly useless.
Another interesting side effect of this government involvement in the tuition business is the natural tendency for those academics who depend on government paychecks to be more pro-government.
In recent years, we have seen a massive expansion in left-dominated universities while, on the other hand, the left seems to dole out increasingly-larger awards to their constituency in academia. It seems to me that academia has now become extremely biased, with most higher-learning institutions and most secondary-learning one entirely dominated by one political party, and often the more extreme wings of that party at that.
Bad Money At The Root
These types of problems are only available in a fiat world. Bad money is at the root of it. In a world without broken fiat, tuition would be far cheaper and colleges would have to compete far harder. Students would have more accountability for their debt and would be more likely to make better decisions.
The biggest victims in this fraud are the students. The students are being taught that there is something for nothing, that decisions do not have consequences and that the world owes them something. Some universities go so far as to convince students that hobby degrees are worth going into debt over. Personally, I love hobbies — there are many excellent and really amazing and worthwhile degrees that are essentially hobbies — with no real world market value. There is nothing wrong with this and there is nothing wrong with somebody making the decision to take these courses. But if you enter a field that is not profitable, then it is not someone else's responsibility to pay for it.
I happen to like comic books, but it is certainly not my moral right to tell someone else that they need to work to pay for me to go to comic book school. Even if that is a major that would guarantee me a high salary, it is still not the right of one person to demand that another pay for their education.
Overall we need more accountability. We need accountability from students and their parents. We need accountability from academic institutions which have abused students and saddled them with debt for worthless degrees. We need accountability from politicians who continually devalue and debase our currency and steal from the workers wages for cronyism. And we need accountability from the media and others who prop up the system.
Ultimately, we all need to be accountable to ourselves to our money and for our own decisions. Ultimately, we should also keep that accountability to ourselves and never expect anyone else to pay for our decisions, bad or good.
This is a guest post by Bruce Fenton. Opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.