Student Loan Bubble Reaches Around 1 Trillion, So What Who Cares

  edumacation

shiny thingOh LOOK someone has decided to do something about the gigantic loan bubble (student, not housing) in the form of commissioning a report from the Consumer Protection Bureau, and YAY Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill) has gone ahead and followed the recommendations of the report, introducing not one, but TWO bills on private student loans! TWO! And one of them would even reverse the bankruptcy discharge law! Does the system finally work? Does it? Of course it doesn’t, this is America, and so both of these bills are “going nowhere!”  USA! USA!

Via Bloomberg:

Borrowers struggling with private student loans would benefit from more refinancing options, a U.S. consumer protection official told a Senate panel today….The panel, headed by Senator Sherrod Brown, an Ohio Democrat, held its hearing less than a week after publication of a government report that said students were victims of a “subprime-style” private loan market that contracted after the 2008 credit crisis. [...]

Senator Richard Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, has introduced two bills on private student loans, one reversing the bankruptcy discharge law and another with Senator Tom Harkin, an Iowa Democrat, that would require colleges to counsel students to take out the maximum in federal loans before venturing into the private market.

 
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The bills are “going nowhere,” Durbin said in a interview yesterday at a meeting of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators in Chicago.

Outstanding educational debt taken out by students and their parents is about $1 trillion, according to the consumer agency. About 15 percent of the loans are privately originated, and don’t have federal loan protections such as fixed rates, deferment and income based repayment.

On the off chance that some of you are not drowning in your own student loans (and your kids’ loans, and your mortgage payments, and your medical bills…), your Wonkette will fill you in on some of the more salient details of the student loan racket, like, for example, that student loans, unlike any other kind of debt, can live on after your death , at which time your parent or spouse or cosigner will be held responsible for them. Also they can never, ever be discharged in bankruptcy and can even be garnished from your Social Security check. Even though these loans are zero risk to the bank (given that they cannot be discharged in bankruptcy and all that) and the federal funds rate has been under 1% for quite some time now, the current interest rate for student loans runs at 3.4% on a subsidized Stafford loan (which is based on financial need) and 6.8% on an unsubsidized Stafford loan (which is not). Which means that the bank gets the money for less than 1%, and then lends it to students for a rate of anywhere between 3.4% to 6.8%.

Of course, as we all know, students wouldn’t be in this mess if they only got as much education as they could afford, or alternatively borrowed $20,000 from their parents to make startups. So who’s REALLY to blame here? The students, for failing to skillfully negotiate with multi-billion dollar corporations, or the students, for failing to have rich parents? The answer, of course, is the students.

[Bloomberg]

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About the author

Kris E. Benson writes about politics for Wonkette and is pursuing a doctorate in philosophy. This will come in handy for when they finally open that philosophy factory in the next town over. @Kris_E_Benson

View all articles by Kris E. Benson

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221 comments

    1. mormos

      didn't i read something on here a while back about some entrepreneurial someone trying to bring back debtors prisons?

      hmm…

  1. Come here a minute

    The student loan bubble is nothing compared to the problems when they start foreclosing on those educations, grey matter everywhere.

          1. MittBorg

            Hmmm. (Eyes Blue speculatively)

            You do know stew meat is the best, right? Sure, it's poor-people-food, but the best stuff usually is. (gathers herbs and spices, takes out pans)

          2. MittBorg

            Bagels and lox. Navarin. Burritos. Menudo. Chaat. All "poor-people" food. The cuts of meat that rich people threw away. When I was growing up, crab used to be poor-people food. Lox, for example, is the belly of the salmon. The rich flesh of the filet was reserved for wealthy buyers. Poor people got the belly scraps, which is where all the bones are.

          3. MittBorg

            What did you think I meant, my friend?

            What's really interesting to me is the evolution of food. There was a time when the poor ate "whole" grain — mainly because they were too poor to have it milled and refined and made into bread. Now only the rich can afford exotic whole grains, and the poor people who grow them — like quinoa — must eat the refined white flour breads that give them the dia-beetus, instead.

          4. va_real

            There was a good segment on the BBC News recently about how unemployed (or underemployed) Greeks who can't afford to stay in cities are moving back to the countryside to become farmers: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-18592929

            Don't you think the physical exercise of farming + eating a more traditional Med diet is likely to have positive health consequences there?

          5. MittBorg

            Interesting. As a soft-handed urbanite who actually once lived on a farm, I should hope so. Will people return to the traditional diet? That's not clear. Processed food has infiltrated everywhere. Hopefully, they will go back to the traditional diet, but you know that old crack, "How you gonna keep 'em on the farm once they've seen (whatever it is they've seen)?" That goes for food, too. Parents in rural areas take their children to the closest city for a "treat," and that includes feeding them horrible processed shit, and the kids view that as some kind of status symbol. I was horrified upon returning to the old country to discover that people are becoming fat and diabetic and ill because they see bottled sugary soda and fast food as status symbols now.

          6. va_real

            Yes, the damage done by sodas is crazy. And diet sodas are even more toxic than the HFCS ones, & that's saying something.

            One of the things mentioned in the news story was that Greeks were fairly late with the urbanization trend- they were mostly rural until the 60's… this gives me some hope that those who are moving back are not so 'cut off' from their agricultural roots as might be the case in some other countries.

            "I get good advice from the advertising world
            Treat me nice says the party girl
            Koke adds life where there isn't any…" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B8zqDVaNg6w

          7. MittBorg

            I did not know this about Greece. And besides, I oughtn't to be such a killjoy without knowing the facts. Thank you for the information.

            Another reason to be optimistic: Greek food is pretty damn good! I'd be happy to live on a diet of peasant bread, cheese, olives, honey, and herbs. With fruit and bitter wild greens for leavening.

          8. MittBorg

            It's too late for the Old Boy, my friend, although I thank you for sharing that.

            We're back from his doctor's with bad news today. The time is approaching fast. I must go, he needs me. Good night, and thank you for all your kindness and your good wishes.

          9. va_real

            I am so sorry to hear that- we lost one of our dogs about a year ago & we still miss her. Having animals in the family is worth it, but it's tough when you have to say goodbye.

            I wish you peace.

          10. mormos

            that must have been back before we over fished them out of existence, or mutated them with chemical spills. now everything is talapia and gluton paste, even the salmon, talapia and gluton paste.

          11. MittBorg

            Yes. I've been warning friends for years NEVER to eat "spicy tuna" sushi, or buy ground meats or "food products," because you never know what goes into that stuff. When food becomes a commodity, in the hands of processors and packagers rather than growers, you're going to get poisonous shit in the foodstream. Because these people don't make food for the love of it, they make "food products" to profit from it/them. And if they can make a penny more per ton in profit by feeding you "pink slime," of course they fucking will.

          12. va_real

            It's funny how the pink slime was a tipping point for several people I know who used to eat fast food & processed food until they heard about the slime.

            I almost never buy processed or 'convenience' foods; aside from the nasty chemicals & undesirable ingredients listed on the labels, there's the additional crap that the FDA says the manufacturers don't even have to list…

          13. MittBorg

            Almost everything in La Cucina de La Casa de Los Gatos is made from scratch. Stock, sauces, curry powders and pastes, everything. I do use commercial soy sauce, fish sauce, fermented black beans, and commercially made tofu, but not often.

          14. va_real

            Yum- I love to make vegetable curries. My fiance' & I both like to cook, & we get local produce via a CSA or the farmers market.

            My idea of convenience food is those boxes of organic vegetable broth & canned organic coconut milk… And I don't make my own pasta either, but I might one day. So I'm not quite as 'from scratch' as y'all, but you do set the bar pretty high!

          15. MittBorg

            I have been cooking for decades, probably longer than you've been alive, so, yeah, you learn a lot from doing with cooking. I wouldn't buy coconut milk if I had a choice, but my climate is not kind to coconuts! I'm happy to share my recipes with you. I often post them on my blog. I'm not blogwhoring, and please don't feel like you have to go there. I don't keep it up, so I won't be offended in the least. But if you want recipes, they be there.

            I also have some very interesting cookbooks, in different languages, from different countries. One in particular, that I'm still trying to figure out, is about 100 years old.

            Are you a vegetarian, by any chance?

          16. va_real

            I will have to spend some time there- saw lotsa catz but not so many recipes at first glance. What's your favorite thing to cook?

            I have many cookbooks but unless I'm making something that has to be done 'just so', I will usually just read for inspiration, then go do my own thing. Sometimes that even works.

            Not a vegetarian, but I don't eat meat very often & almost never cook with it (as in, meat's usually for eating out).

          17. MittBorg

            I don't have a "favourite thing" to cook. I love to cook, and I love to feed the people I love. But one of my exes was a professional chef, and what he does when he's hiring is hand two eggs to an interviewee and say, "Make me something." It's easy to go wrong with eggs.

            What's your favourite thing to cook? And what kind of cuisine?

          18. MittBorg

            OK, Blue, you're just being OVERLY sensitive about this because you don't want to be featured on the menu.

            Fine. FINE. We'll feature someone else!

            Got anyone you wanna get rid of? Just askin'.

    1. actor212

      Maybe if we had some form of, you know, instruction in some mechanism whereby we could work with numbers and combine them in ways that would help us figure all this out on our own…

      1. Billmatic

        What? Numbers? I'm 20k in debt for a liberal arts degree so I only know how to type.

        1. Generation[redacted]

          You learned how to type? I knew I should have chosen an accredited school.

    1. RadioBowels

      You fuck. Did you go to college to concoct that piece of genius? Comment of the week, at least.

  2. LastGasp

    Oh don't just blame the big banks and evil corporations. Many institutions of higher education are happy to saddle students with burdensome loan payments. One of the unpleasant truths of the "university experience" is the reality that, as a student, you're little more than a source of cash for the university.

    1. Boojum

      Wait, students are even a little more than a source of cash? What other value could they possibly have.

  3. ChernobylSoup

    Don't worry kids. Once you get out of school you can get a well-paying job to pay off these loans.

      1. emmelemm

        Fortunately, collecting cans in a shopping cart and turning them in for recycling is a veritable gold mine!

        1. Generation[redacted]

          Sure, if you can break into that racket. Even if you get past the homeless union, you'll find yourself outmaneuvered by little old asian ladies.

    1. Ruhe

      I wonder if the reality isn't that many people who come out of school with a) a good education and good employment prospects and b) crushing debt do end up becoming Republican because the "me-first-it's-my-money-fuck-all-of-yall" mentality of that party is so easy to embrace when you're in that situation.

    1. MittBorg

      And, as Karl Rove assured his fellow Republicans at some $25K a plate dinner, HIS kid isn't going to take a job waiting table or cleaning hotel rooms, so somebody ELSE'S kid will just have to step up.

  4. actor212

    Lemme see, we have Big Finance and Big Private Education, and they're going to to counsel students on taking out the lowest, safest possible loans before hitting up the aftermarket?

    This is as likely as the heroin dealer and the loan shark telling you to see a free clinic for your addiction…

    1. Oblios_Cap

      I'm wondering why I even bother paying the $900-$1000 a month for mine. Oh, that's right. The DOE takes it out of my paycheck. Only $25,000 to go! At least I've paid most of the interest off!

  5. mavenmaven

    Remember, the GOP knows that the more educated the voter, the less likely they will vote GOP (unless their parents are rich), so they have an interest in making education as inaccessible as possible…

    1. MittBorg

      Rich GOPpers don't bother with much education. They don't need it.

      I b'leev most of them just hit up their parents for $20,000 "loans" every week or so.

          1. MilwaukeeKent

            "Doctor! Doctor! Give him something for his cough!"
            "Alright, alright, here's a quarter."
            "That's not much!"
            "It's not much of a cough."

            (yeah but, in my defense, Firesign theater probably stole it from a Vaudevillian)

    1. weejee

      ♪♫ You can run, you can run
      tell my friend-boy Willie Brown
      Lord, that I'm standin' at the crossroad, babe
      I believe I'm sinkin' down ♫♪

  6. Baconzgood

    If these smarty college kids are so collegey with their smartness they wouldn't fall for sub-prime loans.

    1. weejee

      Would you be interested in some vegan bacon made from organic coconuts? If not, how about some beachfront property in North Carolina that is now flood-proof thanks to the beloved Tarheaded Legislature.

  7. OzoneTom

    Hey chilluns — take out the maximum in federal loans before venturing into the private market.

    We are now halfway there.

  8. poorgradstudent

    This is bad. The only thing that gets most students through grad school is the idea that they might one day actually have a diet that doesn't just include Rice-a-Roni, ramen, and cheese sticks.

    1. JackDempsey1

      Ahoy, with that diet, you're looking at a Pequod-caliber case of scurvy. I've heard citrus fuits grow on trees, somewhere. Do you live near a grove or cafeteria dumpster?

      1. MittBorg

        Chilli peppers have (AFAIK) the highest levels of Vitamin C, for all you Poorz out there. Get used to the heat. Chilli peppers, bell peppers, and green onions in your hobo beans.

      2. poorgradstudent

        I'm *kind* of exaggerating, but unfortunately I currently (and hopefully for not much longer) live in Missouri, where the only crops I see are wheat and meth.

      1. poorgradstudent

        Yeah, beans, rice, and canned soup are all staples in my diet. Between the working class grocery store that manages to actually have a decent selection unlike some other discount grocers and my membership at the warehouse bulk store it's really not all THAT bad considering that I dance right on the line of a living wage, but there are times I can relate to the jokes from "Married With Children" about the Bundys dividing up a M&M found under the oven.

        1. MittBorg

          I learned to cook during those years. In my entire life I don't think I had ever spent half an hour in a kitchen. But it was learn or starve. This country is not designed for poor working people who don't have time to cook.

  9. prommie

    Now here is some ugly-ass shit; I have a misguided step-prommie junior that just haaaaad to go to Penn State because Joe Pa! Yay! and fuck all (and some boy she liked went there or said "Go Penn State" one time or something idiotic). First time I visited I learned something about Penn State that they don't tell you because all the Joe Pa! Yay! shit: Its a dingy shithole in buttfuck Pennsyltucky and I wouldn't send my dogs to board there.

    But anyway, here's the ugly-ass shit, the place costs upwards of $25,000 a year, because Joe Pa! Yay! branding and all, to go to a piece of shit nowhere of a school. Joe! Pa! Yay!

    So now as a parental Prommie unit we gots student loans now for this step-Prommie Junior, to go to this school thats now sending her fucking memos advising how to answer interview questions about the rampant pedophile buttfucking and all. Joe! Pa! Yay!

    So who do I fucking sue to get that tuition money back? We'd gladly return the diploma, 2 years no jerb at all, nothing. Joe! Pa! Yay!

    1. FakaktaSouth

      So you're saying they call it "Happy Valley" the same way they called it "Greenland" or "Iceland" – it's reverse false marketing to encourage/discourage all the settler Vikings or whatever. Well, you know, this is all very sad. Too bad this kid of yours isn't a football player, then you get to transfer without losing a thing.

      1. prommie

        Step, step, step Prommie Junior. Oh Penn State is a fucking joke, I thought so first time I saw it, fucking dismal shithole.

        1. FakaktaSouth

          yeah, I got that, step kid of yours, whatever – it's still too bad for the people who love that school, it really is.
          Roll Tide, motherfuckers, I hate it for you for real. The ones that came here for the game not too long ago were very very nice. And shut up you Gainesville-lover. I've actually BEEN to that shithole – it could use with a good fisting.

          1. prommie

            Now shut up about Hogtown, they put out the highest quality product at Shands, I can attest to that.

          2. FakaktaSouth

            That is truly excellent. And I still think you made up this nickname Hogtown just to annoy me.

          3. prommie

            I was told it had to do with the livestock auction. Cross my heart and hope to die, we called it that all the time.

    2. James Michael Curley

      She couldn't get a job milking the cows back behind The Creamery to make that Peachy Paterno Ice Cream?

      1. prommie

        And fucking Rutgers, there for the taking, for half the tuition, I was fucking beside myself from the start, long long long before the little-boy buttfucking scandal broke.

        And forget the rampant pedophilia, to me the place is totally discredited because they had a full-blown walking talking fucking moron as the number 2 coach. This fucking boy-diddler is stupid as a log, makes Moose Miller look like Einstein, if his defense was "I thought they were adult females," I mighta believed him because that man is fucking STOOOOOPID. And this was Joe! Pa! Yay!'s right hand man and heir apparent? HE'S A RETARD! And a boy buttfucker. Jesus Christ on a pogo stick what a fucking podunk piece of shit that place is.

    3. Fraudulently_Joe

      When I went to one of the actual good schools in the Philly suburbs, I dated a girl who was completely enamored of Penn State, and talked about how she went there, 'in [her] other life'.

      She was actually super dumb, in her own unique way, is basically the moral of this story.

      1. prommie

        You mean "other life" like it was like heaven or something? That would be the super-dumbest thing I ever heard.

      1. prommie

        I am mired in the slough of despond, MittBorg. I need to win a lottery or some shit to escape.

        1. MittBorg

          This makes me wish I had won a lottery, just so I could give you enough to get out. A fine mind like yours shouldn't be burning out on your Diet of Worms, dude.

  10. SorosBot

    Speaking as someone with a big student loan debt, you know what would help me pay it? A fucking job.

    1. Fraudulently_Joe

      Ah, don't be silly! The thing you need to get out of your student loan debt is Entrepeneurship, not a job! By which I mean, Going into More Debt for a Business Venture That Will Probably Fail Within 6 Months!

      1. bikerlaureate

        Well, my Pa keeps pretending he doesn't have a paltry $20K to loan me, so I guess I don't deserve to exist in Amercia.

    2. KotBR

      No, sir, you are wrong. You need tax cuts. More importantly, the people who aren't hiring need tax cuts so you can pay your loan.

    3. Jadetiger79

      Me too brother. A job. Preferably one in sort of the field I sold my soul to learn about.

    4. Biel_ze_Bubba

      Bootstraps, my boy! Bootstraps! That's the trouble with kids today … those newfangled sneakers don't have good old-fashioned bootstraps, the sort you can pull yourself up by!

  11. MissTaken

    Student loans? That's funny! Everyone knows you just show your college acceptance letter to your parents who then they give you a new BMW when you move into the frat house for 4 years of keg stands and skinny-dipping. Loans?! Ha!

    1. prommie

      Yeah, this whining is un-american, fucking lazy-ass worthless bums should suck it up, work hard, and pay off those loans like Mittens Romney paid off his loans!

  12. Pragmatist2

    This is a simple problem: Just create tens of thousands of new jobs servicing and collecting on student loans and all those students will have jobs so they can pay back their loans.

    1. snackypants

      I will volunteer to create the logo for your new business. I'm thinking a snake eating its own tail will be perfect.

    1. MittBorg

      Geezus. Haven't those bastards done enough? The state school system was supposed to be for the children of the POOR, goddammit.

    1. ph7

      ♪ Oh, if we can't have it
      Why should a wretch like you?
      Oh, it was drilled in our heads
      Now we drill it into your head too ♪

  13. Ruhe

    Well, this will all probably work out somehow in the end…oh, look! The Olympics are starting!

  14. sbj1964

    I like the title of this article.Having the words student loans ,and reach around together.But the system is just fucking them.Without the reach around.

  15. BaldarTFlagass

    Just like highways, bridges, and other infrastructure accoutrements, we probably already have enough college graduates in this country to last us a hundred years without having to invest any more in education.

  16. Goonemeritus

    If you just borrowed a few hundred grand from your Dad and started a business instead of all that elitist college stuff this wouldn’t be a problem. Is anyone writing these Romney pearls of wisdom down for future generations?

  17. ChernobylSoup

    Imagine the trading floor at the student loan exchange.

    "I got engineers, engineers bundled here!"

    "Fuck, I gotta unload these gender studies or I'm screwed."

    1. Generation[redacted]

      Bundle those in a class credit default swap with a double short on post-grad placement and mix in some worthless internships to make the numbers look good. You'll get it all back on the foreign markets.

      1. Biel_ze_Bubba

        I hear Moodys will still give you a AAA on English Lit futures, if you know the right guy.

  18. Callyson

    In favor of reversing the prohibition against offering student loan debt relief to those who declare bankruptcy: consumer protection agencies & Suze Orman, to name two respected sources.

    Opposed: greedy banks and the GOP.

    Students (current and former), remember this when you decide what to do with your money and how to vote in November…

  19. thefrontpage

    Just like everything else–all levels of government, all types and sizes of business, non-profits, arts organizations, charities, corporations, defense industry businesses, everything–educational institutions are also horribly, stupidly mismanaged. At the University of Maryland–currently undergoing a tragic, drastic leadership vaccuum at all levels–the school is in debt, donations are down, textbook prices are skyrocketing, crime is up, housing prices are up, the dining halls are rip-offs, tuition is horribly over-priced, student fees go up every year, and the level of education has dropped–and, meanwhile, the school is spending $2 million on an unneeded house for the president, and is pushing a wholly unneeded, corrupt and stupid shopping center and restaurant project that costs tens of millions of dollars. Really. That's the state of our educational system in the United States today, in a nutshell: Stupid management.

    1. sati_demise

      it all seems to be based on giving the rich more crap. my town does this shit too. It never works the way they think it will, just wastes money

    2. poorgradstudent

      You'd think that at a certain point even Americans would learn that business people aren't qualified to run institutions that should ideally have non-profit missions.

      Well I try to draw optimism from things like the University of Virginia completely thwarting a coup by neoliberal profit-driven interests (connected to Goldman Sachs, no less!) and retaining a president who does radical things like actually giving a fuck about higher education, but for every story like that you get at least two stories like the University of Missouri gutting its academic press, replacing it with a hollowed-out zombie that's already being laughed out of the academic world before it's printed a single book, and all the while pumping millions into an expansion of its athletic complex.

  20. Blunderthing

    So, what kind of education do you need to work the counter at a Seven/ Eleven anyway? Uppity kids, wanting to "better themselves". In my day we had to sell WEED to stay in college, er, well, to buy beer anyway, er, oh and smokes, and shit, the new Elvis Costello album, and oh some wall hangings cuz chix dig them.

  21. pinkocommi

    It is not so much that indentured servitude is coming back. It's that it never went away.

  22. AncienReggie

    And in a further pounding … beginning this fall, there will no longer be a 6-month grace period between a student leaving leaving school and loan payments becoming due. The reason for this is … well, there is no reason. No economic justification, no savings, no benefits. Nothing. It's just another way for Congress to say, Fuck you if your daddy can't pay for your schooling.

  23. prommie

    Ever notice that the fake-ass schools all sound faux anglo-saxony like suburban subdivisions? Strayer, Carlingford Uninversity, Kensington, Knightsbridge, Trafalgar, and Worchester Universities?

  24. Fox n Fiends

    Someday when I tell my grandkids about growing up in the "Middle Class" they will scoff in disbelief.

  25. OldWhiteLies

    {snark off; parental worry on} It is the Murikan way. Saving lives and healing the sick is for-profit. Higher Education is for-profit. Incarcerating felons is for-profit. And Congress is for-profit. And those are just the ones that come immediately to mind.

    I fear greatly for OWLesquire's future. Jericho-type existence seems closer each day – brought about by an apocalypse of greed.

  26. James Michael Curley

    You just can't take this guy anywhere!

    "Updated: 2:26 p.m. ET

    (CBS News) As Mitt Romney kicks off his European trip Wednesday with a visit in London, the Romney campaign is dismissing a report from the UK's Daily Telegraph that an adviser to the campaign made comments suggesting the Republican presidential candidate's commitment to rebuilding the so-called "special relationship" between England and the United States has to do with a sense of "Anglo-Saxon heritage."

    According to the Telegraph, the adviser suggested that Mr. Obama could not understand the depth of the relationship between the two countries because he cannot fully appreciate the shared "Anglo-Saxon heritage."

    "We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and he feels that the special relationship is special," the adviser said of Romney, according to the Telegraph: "The White House didn't fully appreciate the shared history we have."
    CBS News

    1. IonaTrailer

      Because his mother had absolutely nothing to do with him – everyone knows Obama sprang from the loins of an African chief and the right-hand of Satan. (Black non-Anglo-Saxon Satan).

    1. MittBorg

      Let's not wait for them to get fucked by a bubble, let's FUCK 'em with a bubble!

      Oh, wait, bubbles aren't exactly hard and pointy, are they?

  27. Antispandex

    This could be a (as Trump calls it) YUGE! campaign issue….if the people who care most about this voted. But they don't. So…beer pong?

  28. pinkocommi

    One solution to the student loan crisis is allowing students to sell their organs. Who needs two kidneys anyway?

  29. CapeClod

    Rick Santorum taught us that all you have to have is a high school degree, get married, and then you can join the middle class… which his party is trying to destroy.

  30. MissTaken

    Stupid kids. Instead of going to college you should've done the smart thing and acted in really crummy, sparkly-vampire movies, got together with sparkly-vampire, cheated on sparkly-vampire with much older, married movie director, and then apologized in People magazine for loads of $$.

    Now that's the American way!

  31. pdiddycornchips

    First the internet bubble went bust and everyone went broke (except the banks). Then, the housing bubble burst and everyone went broke (including the banks but we decided they were important and we bailed them out). Now, the student loan bubble is about to break and everyone is screwed again (except the banks). Seems what's bad for us is good for the banks. Therefore, if we reverse the equation (math!!!), what's bad for banks must be good for us. That's the way out of this mess. We have to kill the banks before they kill us.

  32. SayItWithWookies

    Oh, and can we not give government-backed loans for for-profit colleges? You know, they're the ones that have all the ads promising an "exciting career in nursing" and then charge zillions of dollars and afterwards the student finds out the school wasn't really that accredited and they're barely qualified to take somebody's weight and height? That would be nice.

  33. Generation[redacted]

    This is why it's important for students to vote. Or it would be if you you could establish residency or use your student ID to vote.

  34. tracymarcy42

    You can say the students are to blame, but when 18 year olds are not given the whole story, and just told to "sign on the dotted line" to go to school, without being advised of the market or the risks of taking out these loans, I think the system is a huge part of the problem. When Donald Trump et al. can bankrupt over and over, the same should hold true for bright-eyed, naive college students.

  35. Nesnora

    I have over 120k left in private student loan debt at 9% interest (I had to defer my loans a crappy 3 months and they raised the interest)… I live paycheck to paycheck, down to scrounging for quarters in my couch. I have horrible credit, and I can't consolidate because of it even though I have a stable job… it or me isn't going to last much longer.

    As a nice, fat bubble on the pond scum of this over-ripe, yellow kiddie pool— it ain't lookin' good for us kids/people in their 30's that have less cash than when they worked as a pumpkin picker in high school.

  36. owhatever

    The only real solution is to raise the interest rates at leave five percent so those danged students will better understand debt. Otherwise, we are doomed.

  37. Naked_Bunny

    I don't understand all the whining about excessive student loan debt. I mean, I should get mine paid off next year, months before I turn 43. Surely it was worth it to get those 15 years of working as an entry level computer programmer.

  38. chascates

    At least it's creating jobs for some people. I get at least 2 voice mails a day wanting my student loan payments.

  39. ttommyunger

    Paid tuition, room and board plus books and incidentals. Worked two jobs while carrying a full semester load. Busted my ass on the football field for free so that they could charge the sheeples moneez for tickets to see us perform for them. I don't remember being given anything free of charge and yet they still send me letters, emails and bulletins begging for more money and more money….

  40. mosjef

    Ignore it, wait til it blows up, then blame it on flouride in the water sapping our precious bodily fluids.

  41. HolyCow!!

    How about adding a bankruptcy provision on federal student loans? I pay eight percent on mine. I'd kill for 3.4% rate. I think I would be able to pay my loans off with that kind of rate before I am 55.

  42. mocasdad

    With Durbin, the questions are always:

    1) how long until he tearfully, with a raspy voice, apologizes and walks back his position

    2) why is this jackass able to get elected

    I wish we had a strong democrat in the senate. Just one. Sigh.

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