Phi Beta Cons

“Forgiving” Student Debt While Forgetting What Causes It

The current left-liberal buzz about the escalating crisis of college students’ debt is “loan forgiveness.” The New York Times has just featured the latest wand-waving schemes for easing the burden–such as the creation of a mammoth loan-repayment organization and a plan contingent on the borrowers’ income.

 

As though it is an alien idea, however, Times writer Jon Gertner avoids even mentioning the perfectly obvious and feasible means for lowering college costs, which would help students to pay less in tuition and to incur less debt.   

 

While dripping tears about the burden debt places on many students–and it is increasingly onerous–prominent media and campus leaders squelch discussion about how this burden could be eased by:

 

  • increasing faculty teaching loads
  • trimming numbers of administrators
  • cutting back or eliminating ancillary (non-educational) campus services
  • using quality on-line education to achieve cost-effectiveness

Much less do they let slip the benefits of giving government subsidies directly to students instead of institutions, which would force campuses to compete and cut waste.

 

Students and the public will have to go to think tanks and blogs to learn that ever-escalating college costs and student debt are not immutable forces of nature and that they need not tolerate exploitation by cosseted academic special interests and their liberal-elite protectors.

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