Free stuff

“Most politicians believe in just one thing – winning elections. They’ll say anything to get in office and stay there.” – Harry Browne

On some sort of level we all know this is true. We all want to believe that, this time, it’ll be different and that the person we are voting for is the exception to the rule. We are hopeful, optimistic creatures.

The cancellation of student debt is a hugely emotive subject. And one, that gets bandied about, in my opinion, far too flippantly.

Let me start off my saying there is likely some Venn overlap where most of us can agree.

  1. Eighteen year olds are #%$& stupid. They should not be making decisions about taking on $100,000.00 of debt. A lot of them have NO idea how massively burdensome this will be on their lives.
  2. Ages 20 to 30 are likely the most important years of your life when it comes to laying down the foundations for your future wealth. If all your disposable income is being used to finance debt it is likely you will never recover.

BUT…

Some kids make good decisions. Assuming they see value in going to college (something I am now, having reach the midpoint in my life, skeptical of). There are kids that go to college locally. Live at home till they finish. Have weekend jobs. Don’t get into debt.

(I love Remy so much. I’m not even sure I mean that in a completely heterosexual way)

I know this likely sounds mean, but aren’t we subsidizing poor decision making? The kid who got a degree debt free and the kids that didn’t go to college… well, they don’t get anything. And that doesn’t feel particularly fair and equitable to me.

So how about we just give each 21 year old $60,000 regardless of whether they went to college and accrued loans or didn’t. On the surface that sounds better. Although there are going to be people who just missed the cut off date or have just finished paying off those loans that are going to be fairly pissed. (I know I would be) Okay. Just to be completely fair, lets give EVERYONE $60,000, that way no one is treated any different.

Suddenly that number starts to look a little scary… even to a socialist, but that would get the whole equality tick-box checked.

But there are countries that have free education and health care… and they make it work. Sorta. It doesn’t really solve the issue of fairness though. People who don’t go to university still end up subsidizing the ones that do (through taxes).

Personally I’d prefer to be taxed less and have more money in my bank account every month and not have to pay for your degree in Gender studies or Art History. But that’s just me. Would I be open to helping to pay for more doctors and engineering students? Well… that is definitely a conversation we can have… can I do it through a donation or a gofundme instead of giving my money to the government first?

 

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