Is The U.S. Constitution Relevant In America?

On February 27th, Issues and Insights posted an article about a recent statement by President Biden.

The article reports:

The Supreme Court told President Joe Biden that he didn’t have the authority to forgive student loan debt. But he did anyway, bragging that the Court “didn’t stop me.” So why do we even have a legislative branch and a high court if the president is going to make law as if he were a king?

Does Congress have the intestinal fortitude to insist that the President abide by the Constitution? Frankly, I doubt it.

The article continues:

It’s Biden’s party, and its activist media, that has been carping for years about losing “our democracy.” Yet when a Democratic president bypasses the checks and balances that are the backbone of our republic, the three co-equal branches framework of government that is intended to guard against descending into a dictatorship, they celebrate rather than condemn.

Maybe it’s because they care about the integrity of our system of government only when it’s making policies they want.

In June 2023, the Supreme Court, in a 6-3 decision, struck down the Biden administration’s plan to cancel up to $400 billion in student loans, which it had announced in August 2022. In her concurring opinion, Justice Amy Coney Barrett noted that “when it comes to” national policy, “the Constitution gives Congress the reins — a point of context that no reasonable interpreter could ignore.”

But high court rulings apparently don’t apply when a Democratic president decides they don’t. Last week, the White House played the role of unreasonable interpreter and announced “$1.2 billion in student debt cancellation for almost 153,000 borrowers.”

“The Biden-Harris administration has now approved nearly $138 billion in student debt cancellation for almost 3.9 million borrowers through more than two dozen executive actions,” according to a White House fact sheet.

Biden acknowledged last week that “my MAGA Republican friends in the Congress, elected officials, and special interests stepped in and sued us,” and that “the Supreme Court blocked it.”

The government does not have the power to step between a lender and a borrower. That is a private contract and should not be interfered with by the government. How would you feel if the government stepped in and forgave your neighbor’s mortgage while requiring you to pay off your mortgage? That is what the Biden administration is trying to do.

Where The Money Is Actually Going

On Friday, Zero Hedge reported the following:

President Joe Biden is heaping another $5 billion onto a $136 billion pile of taxpayer-funded student loan debt forgiveness, as one of his signature 2024 (vote buying) schemes heading into the 2024 election.

Not only has moral hazard been reduced to an academic concept, shouldn’t taxpayer funds be used to bail out poverty-stricken Americans before people with college degrees who signed their names to a contract for non-dischargeable debt? We digress.

Around 74,000 student loan borrowers will now see debt canceled as a result of administrative changes enacted by the US Department of Education in the latest round of relief – including borrowers enrolled in the government’s income-driven repayment and public service loan forgiveness programs, Bloomberg reports.

Each program requires at least a decade of payment or service to be eligible for relief. Mismanaged federal student-loan plans have left some borrowers without promised relief after making payments for as long as 25 years. -Bloomberg

“My administration is able to deliver relief to these borrowers – and millions more – because of fixes we made to broken student loan programs that were preventing borrowers from getting relief they were entitled to under the law,” Biden said in a Friday statement written by other people.

Of those receiving taxpayer-funded assistance, roughly 60% are taxpayer-funded “public servants” – so the snake continues to eat its tail. So, buying votes with voters’ money.

Since when is the federal government able to change the details of a contract mid-stream? Since this is essentially an expenditure, why is it coming from the Executive Branch? The House of Representatives is supposed to be in charge of spending. This should quickly be found unconstitutional by the courts, but I seriously doubt anyone will bring the case.

Bidenomics And The Cost Of Buying A House

Although President Biden has attempted to buy votes from younger voters with his student loan bailout programs, in the process he has created inflation and interest rates that put buying a home out of reach for the very people he has tried to bribe.

On Monday, Breitbart posted an article about what has happened to monthly mortgage payments under President Biden.

The article reports:

The average monthly mortgage payment in Joe Biden’s America has soared to $3,322, per analysis from the Wall Street Journal.

That $3,322 is nearly double the average monthly mortgage payment when His Fraudulency assumed office. When former President Trump left office, the average monthly mortgage payment was $1,787.

The article includes the following Twitter post:

The article notes:

Those obnoxiously high mortgage payments are not only due to the Bidenflation caused by His Fraudulency’s lunatic government spending. There are other factors…

For those of you who vote Democrat and are currently pissing away all your money on rent because you can’t afford a home, riddle me this: What happens to the housing market when a president throws open our southern border to millions and millions of illegal aliens who need a place to live? Think hard now… Could it be that when you have a finite amount of something people want and then flood the country with millions more people who want it…? Yes, that’s right, dummies, the cost of that Something People Want explodes and that Something People Want becomes scarcer. And now you want it and can’t get it because you’re a dummy.

The second factor is this… Democrats hate single-family homes. This is why they use Climate Change to justify blocking the construction of new homes. Democrats want us all packed in cities in massive government housing complexes. By the way, they make no secret of this.

The final factor is this… This is all by design, dummies. Democrats know lunatic government spending creates lunatic inflation and that lunatic inflation destroys purchasing power and creates high interest rates that make it impossible for the middle class to purchase a home. Democrats also know that when you flood a country already dealing with a housing crisis caused by enviro-lies with millions of illegals, housing costs explode.

If you are a young American just entering the workforce full time, do yourself a favor and vote every Democrat (and RINO Republican) out of office. That is the only way you can secure your financial future.

This Might Backfire

On Thursday, The U.K. Daily Mail posted an article about President Biden’s new plan to forgive student loan debt.

This is the headline from the article:

American workers – are YOU happy to pay $1,800 EACH to wipe the student debt of the privileged elite who’ll earn $52,000 a year? Because BRAD POLUMBO reveals that’s your bill for desperate Joe’s naked bribe for votes

The article reports:

‘Congratulations! I erased your student loans. Now will you vote for me?’

That’s what President Biden should have said in an email to more than 800,000 student loan borrowers – because his latest scheme to ‘forgive’ some of their $1.78 trillion in outstanding debts is nothing more than a bribe.

‘Your student loan has been forgiven because of actions my Administration took to make sure you receive the relief you earned and deserve,’ read the White House message sent to in-boxes on Tuesday.

Gee – Democrats are so generous with other people’s money.

What had these lucky few done to ‘earn’ and ‘deserve’ this multi-billion dollar ‘relief?’

Very little.

In a bit of bureaucratic sleight of hand, Biden and his dutiful ministerial assistants transformed an obscure Education Department repayment program into a brand new entitlement program.

The monthly payments of hundreds of thousands of borrowers will be capped at five percent of discretionary income, and if they pay these tiny installments for 10 to 20 years their entire remaining loan will be wiped away.

This move is aimed at college students and graduates ages 18-34. This is a demographic that is not generally supporting President Biden.

However, according to the Census Bureau, only 35 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 29 vote, and 48 percent of people between the ages of 30 and 44 vote. Almost 60 percent of people between the ages of 45 and 64 vote, and 66 percent of people over 65 vote. It is quite possible that those over the ages of 45 learned critical thinking in school–something that is rarely taught now. If the people over 45 realize that they are paying for this student loan forgiveness program, it is very possible that they will turn out to cancel the votes of the younger people benefitting from the program. It is also possible that those in the age group that will benefit will include enough people who didn’t go to college that are angry about paying for someone else’s education that they could not afford for themselves.

At any rate, please follow the link to read the entire article. It will be interesting to see if this actually works or backfires. Meanwhile, we should mention that it is entirely unconstitutional.

Getting The Job Done–Even When You Have To Do It Alone

One America News reported yesterday that President Trump has signed four executive orders designed to alleviate some of the economic disruption caused by the coronavirus.

The article reports:

On Saturday, he signed a payroll tax initiative, which will defer payroll tax to those making less than $100,000 a year until the end of 2020.

…The president has renewed supplemental unemployment benefits at $400 a week. This new amount came in just below the previous $600 extra, which Americans were receiving before the enhance benefits expired earlier this month.

…He also provided assistance to renters by imposing a partial moratorium on evictions and suspended mandatory student loan payments through the end of the year.

…The president has expressed he had to step in because Democrats in Congress have not stepped up to the plate.

“Democrats have refused these offers,” said President Trump. “What they really want is bailout money for states that are run by Democrat governors and mayors, which have been run very badly for many, many years.”

This is a stroke of genius. The bill that the House of Representatives put forth included a lot of things that have nothing to do with the coronavirus, and they refused to negotiate on anything less. We don’t need national mail-in voting–we stand in line at the grocery store, at Home Depot, and at WalMart almost every day. We don’t need to bail out badly-run states–they need to clean up their own budgets first (and Washington also needs to do some serious spending reduction).

The Democrats are unhappy. They might take this to court, but if they do, they will be fighting a President who signed an executive order to help Americans while Congress could not come to agreement on doing anything. Even if they won in court, they would lose in the court of public opinion, and the election is less than three months away.

This was a brilliant move on the part of the President.

What’s In The Bill

Yesterday PJ Media posted an article listing ten of the pet projects included in the House Democrats’ proposed $3 trillion coronavirus bill. I am posting the list here, please follow the link to the article for details:

1. Repealing parts of the Trump tax cuts.

2. Releasing prisoners

3. Delaying a coronavirus public health corps

4. Tying Trump’s hands on inspectors general

5. Student loan forgiveness

6. “Environmental justice grants”

7. Voting by mail for the 2020 election

8. LGBT training

9. Hate crimes act

10. Perverse incentive unemployment checks

This bill is a nightmare for mainstream America. Repealing the limits on tax deductions for state and local taxes helps rich Democrats in New York, California, New Jersey and Connecticut. It brings back the practice of fiscally responsible states underwriting the spending of fiscally irresponsible states. Releasing prisoners also includes an end to cash bail. We see how well that has worked in New York–crime rates have skyrocketed. (see article here). Voting by mail would enable voter fraud at levels not previously seen.

This bill is being introduced for political purposes. The Democrats know that the Republicans cannot support it. In the 2020 election, the talking point will be that the Republicans blocked the Democrats’ efforts to help people deal with the economic impact of the coronavirus.

It’s a shame that the Democrats who control the House of Representatives couldn’t create a bill that would deal with the issues at hand in an apolitical manner. Unfortunately, that is not the way they do things.

 

 

The Pandering Continues

One friend on Facebook commented that the last Democrat debate looked like an auction to see who could give away more of other people’s money. We have a debt problem in America. So far, neither the Democrats or the establishment Republicans have been willing to address Washington’s addiction to spending. However, based on the Democrat debates, the Democrats would increase the debt rapidly. The Republicans are only leading us off the cliff slowly.

The Federalist posted an article today about the Democrat plans to forgive all student loans.

The article reports:

Of all the pandering showcased during Democrats’ attempts to win back the presidency, wiping out student debt ranked at or near the top.

“I believe that education is the future for this country,” socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders barked during the first round of Democratic primary debates, explaining that’s why we must “eliminate student debt and we do that by placing a tax on Wall Street.” Sen. Amy Klobuchar spoke similarly. “I can tell you this,” the Minnesota senator demagogued, “if billionaires can pay off their yachts, students should be able to pay off their student loans.”

There can be no serious discussion of this issue, however, in 60-second sound bites. So, beyond the soak-the-rich shtick that shades every Democratic economic debate point, the candidates resorted to two tactics: shock and sob stories.

The article reminds us of some basic reality that reveals the absurdity of the sob stories:

There are many ways to counter these arguments, based on both economics and equity. But it’s hard to counter soundbites with sense, so instead, here are my inquiries for these politicians, the press, and all the students demanding relief from the burdens of their debt: Tell me your sob stories from age 12 on, not what you can’t do now, but what you couldn’t do then. Tell what you had to do then and through college to avoid what is now, to you, crushing student debt.

What time did you get up to deliver papers in junior high? How many hours a week did you work since 14 to save for college? How many toilets did you scrub? How many high school football games did you miss because you were working? What dream college did you forgo to avoid taking out student loans?

Which 8 a.m. class did you take so you could complete your major’s requirements and still work in the afternoon? Which bus line did you take to get to your job because you didn’t borrow to buy a car? What job did you work full-time while completing your MBA at night?

What did you do to afford college? What didn’t you do because of the cost of college? Were you getting tattoos and traveling your way through college? Were you pledging and partying? Did you go to your top-choice university? Maybe an out-of-state public university with higher tuition rates? Which spring break and study abroad destinations did you visit along the way?

The article concludes:

Did you splurge on your fairytale wedding instead of paying down your student loans? What cars did you buy or lease? Where did you live? What electronics did you own? What clothing and other personal expenditures did you have? In short, show me the money and how you spent it!

None of my business? You’re right. Nor is your student debt my business or my problem.

The Student Loan Problem Gets More Interesting

On March 20, 2017, Judicial Watch reported the following:

Judicial Watch announced that it today filed a Freedom of Information (FOIA) lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against the U.S. Department of Education seeking records relating to then Obama administration’s “coding error” that resulted in masking that most borrowers are failing to pay down their federally-subsidized student loans (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Education (No. 1:17-cv-00501)).

The Obama administration’s Obamacare legislation also included provisions that resulted in the federal takeover of the student loan industry, which radically increased taxpayer subsidies of higher education loans.

The Education Department acknowledged in early January that the coding error resulted in wildly inaccurate College Scorecard repayment rates. The significance is substantial, according to The Wall Street Journal:

The department played down the mistake, but the new average three-year repayment rate has declined by 20 percentage points to 46%. This is huge. It means that fewer than half of undergraduate borrowers at the average college are paying down their debt.

***

Last month the Government Accountability Office (GAO) projected that loan forgiveness for borrowers enrolled in the plans could cost upward of $108 billion. GAO rapped the department for underestimating the costs due to “insufficient quality controls” and “unreasonable assumptions.” It’s possible the putative “coding error” is connected to this ill-management.

As the Journal notes, “The other scandal is that the Obama Administration used the inflated Scorecard repayment data as a pretext to single out for-profit colleges for punitive regulation.”

Judicial Watch filed today’s lawsuit after the department failed to respond to a January 29, 2017, FOIA request for:

  • Any records concerning the coding error in the calculation of repayment rate data contained in the College Scorecard, as disclosed on January 13, 2017. . . . Requested records include, but are not limited to, records identifying causes of the coding error and steps taken to correct the error, communications within [the Education Department] regarding the error, communications with third parties concerning the error, and records relating to the public announcement of the error.

“The government-run student loan racket is a disaster for taxpayers and has been abused to target for-profit competitors of liberal-controlled ‘public’ universities,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The Trump administration should quickly respond to our FOIA lawsuit about this scandal.  The Trump administration has an opportunity to drain the swamp in higher education by exposing the truth about their expensive taxpayer subsidies.”

The Next Economic Bubble Is Growing

Yesterday The Star Tribune posted an article about the rising number of student loan defaults.

The article reports:

A new analysis of federal student loans reveals the number of people severely behind on repaying their debt has soared in the last year, painting a bleak picture of one of the largest government programs.

The Consumer Federation of America released a study Tuesday that found that millions of people had not made a payment on $137 billion in federal student loans for at least nine months in 2016, a 14 percent increase in defaults from a year earlier. The consumer watchdog used the latest data from the Education Department, which manages $1.3 trillion in federal student debt owed by 42.4 million Americans.

 What’s striking about the findings is that Americans have a variety of repayment options to avoid default. The Obama administration expanded programs that cap monthly payments to a percentage of earnings, but even though millions of people are enrolled in those income-driven plans, there is still a disconnect.

“Despite a rising stock market and falling unemployment, student loan borrowers are still struggling,” said Rohit Chopra, a senior fellow at CFA and former student loan ombudsman at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. “The economy remains very difficult for so many young people just starting out.”

In recent years, as more money has become available for college loans, the cost of college has increased at levels higher than inflation. Students have also pursued degrees in subjects that may not translate well into the marketplace. The combination has created an increasing debt with a decreasing ability of students to pay back that debt.

It’s time to let banks and other financial institutions handle student loans. Historically, banks and financial institutions loan money to people with the expectation that the money will be paid back. They are careful in their lending practices. Scholarships should be made available to worthy students who cannot qualify for loans. It is time for colleges to bring their tuition into line with the overall cost of living so that students are not taking out loans they cannot afford to pay back.

Another Failed Government Program

Yesterday The Wall Street Journal ran a story about the now government-run student loan program. In 2010 Congress passed a law that essentially forced commercial banks out of the student loan business and made student loans a federal program. At the time, critics of the change pointed out that the banks had a better handle on how to screen people to see if they were likely to repay the loans. Congress chose to ignore those warnings. Now the U.S. taxpayers are quite likely to find themselves stuck with a bill for $125 billion in unpaid student loans. This is not good for our economy. It is another example of a government program that has failed miserably.

The article in The Wall Street Journal focused on two students from for-profit colleges.

The article points out:

Borrowers in long-term default represent about 16% of the roughly 43 million Americans with student debt, now totaling $1.3 trillion across the U.S., and their numbers have continued to climb despite the expanding labor market.

One story involves a student from Abdill College:

Mr. Osborne said Abdill provided a low-quality education and exaggerated the likelihood that they would find career success. And he said the government should have never extended them so much debt for jobs that are in low demand. The typical phlebotomist makes just under $32,000 a year, according to the Labor Department.

About 1 in 5 student borrowers who left Abdill in 2012 defaulted on their loans within three years, the latest federal figures show. Its default rate of nearly 21% is far higher than the national average of 12% among all colleges.

Would a commercial bank have given these loans? What is the responsibility of the borrower in doing research on the college and its graduates? I don’t have a problem with for-profit colleges, but there is a need for students to study the employment rates of these colleges before borrowing large amounts of money to attend them.

The story reported on another student:

He is in default on his private loans and in forbearance on his federal loans. Debt collectors call him almost daily but he ignores their calls.

Mr. Lopko, who lives in a Chicago suburb, now earns $32,000 a year as a customer-service agent for an Illinois manufacturer.

“The only way out of this situation honestly is to win the lotto or to find a job that pays me $300,000 a year,” Mr. Lopko said.

He says he tries to be frugal but admits he occasionally splurges. He recently upgraded to a one-bedroom apartment from a studio and took out a loan for a new Subaru WRX that carries a $445 monthly payment.

“Are you supposed to stay in inside all the time, never go out, and pay these loans?” he said.

Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but I think I would have bought a cheaper car for a few years. I am also somewhat amazed that he was able to get a car loan. Part of the problem here is that we have not taught all of our young people financial responsibility and that there are always people willing to lend them money that they may not be able to pay back.

What Happens When The Government Makes Something Better

Investor’s Business Daily posted an article about what has happened to student loans under the Obama Administration.

This is the picture:

The Obama Administration took over the student loan program in 2010.

The article reports:

In a nutshell, federal loan aid to colleges is pushing up tuition faster than inflation. Students must take out ever higher amounts of debt to pay for their education, but starting salaries haven’t kept up. If students don’t get good jobs when they graduate, many will default.

The study, published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, shows conclusively that growth in one program — the Federal Student Loan Program — was more than enough to account for the entire rise in college tuition from 1987 to 2010 — a stunning conclusion that suggests a massive market failure.

From 2006 to today, total student loan debt soared from $517 billion to $1.3 trillion, a 152% jump, to cover surging tuition costs. Over that same period, real starting wages for college grads were essentially flat.

Sadly, this should be no surprise, given recent history.

Whenever government gets involved in subsidizing anything — from sugar to home mortgages — higher prices emerge, leading to market disruptions and, often, a “crisis.”

At some point, we need to realize that the private sector does a better job at everything than the government. The bubble of the student loan debt will be bailed out by the taxpayers, and the national debt will continue to spiral out of control. This is our future unless we begin to elect people who understand both human nature and free markets.

I’m Sorry, I Find This Attitude Offensive

On June 6, Lee Seigel posted an article in The New York Times explaining why he defaulted on his student loans. I’m sorry, I lack sympathy for his plight.

He states:

Years later, I found myself confronted with a choice that too many people have had to and will have to face. I could give up what had become my vocation (in my case, being a writer) and take a job that I didn’t want in order to repay the huge debt I had accumulated in college and graduate school. Or I could take what I had been led to believe was both the morally and legally reprehensible step of defaulting on my student loans, which was the only way I could survive without wasting my life in a job that had nothing to do with my particular usefulness to society.

I chose life. That is to say, I defaulted on my student loans.

The article concludes:

There would be a national shaming of colleges and universities for charging soaring tuition rates that are reaching lunatic levels. The rapacity of American colleges and universities is turning social mobility, the keystone of American freedom, into a commodified farce.

If people groaning under the weight of student loans simply said, “Enough,” then all the pieties about debt that have become absorbed into all the pieties about higher education might be brought into alignment with reality. Instead of guaranteeing loans, the government would have to guarantee a college education. There are a lot of people who could learn to live with that, too.

I agree with the writer that college tuition is too high. I wonder if he understands that the rise in tuition has been parallel to the amount of money made available through student loan programs (generally government-funded). In recent years, colleges have had no incentive to keep tuition low–students just keep taking out loans to pay the increased amounts.

As for the government guaranteeing a college education. Where in the world is that written in the U.S. Constitution? Why in the world should the government be responsible for anyone getting a college education? It sounds to me like the writer of the article is simply looking for a free education at the expense of the American taxpayer. The American taxpayer will eventually pay for all the loans that have been defaulted on, but I really don’t think those of us who paid for our children’s education should have to pay for everyone else’s children also. I little personal responsibility would be really nice. If graduates pay back their loans, there will be money available for students who are just entering college. Learning the responsibility of paying back you student loans should be part of your college education.

Behind The Scenes In The Student Loan Battle

Today’s Wall Street Journal posted an editorial about the current debate over student loan interest rates.

Today the Senate voted on student-loan subsidies. The news just reported that an attempt to roll back the interest rate increase has failed a procedural hurdle. One proposal suggests that the interest rate on the loans be tied to the 10-year Treasury rate. The advantage of this idea is that the taxpayers do not have to guarantee the lower rate to borrowers while the cost of the loans to the government goes up.

The Congressional Budget Office recently estimated taxpayer losses on student loans to be $95 billion over the next ten years. Remember that the government takeover of student loans was part of ObamaCare. (see rightwinggranny.com)

The article in the Wall Street Journal reports:

Liberals apologize for the price hikes imposed by their friends in the faculty lounge by pretending that universities are starved for revenue. Rep. Frank Pallone (D., N.J.) claimed on MSNBC on Saturday that “the federal government is not making the investment in higher education.” Perhaps he’s forgotten that annual Pell grant spending of $34 billion has roughly doubled in the Obama era, or that Uncle Sugar now originates more than $100 billion in annual loans.

In October 2011, I wrote in rightwinggranny.com:

The article also points out that under the proposed changes, the government would be entirely responsible for college loans. Students would borrow directly from the government and pay the government back. What happens when students default? The taxpayers pick up the tab. Aside from the fact that the benefits to the students of this program are minuscule, we need less government in all aspects of our lives–not more.

In a New York Post article quoted in the above article, John Podhoretz wrote:

One federal study found that between 1982 and 2007, tuition costs rose 432 percent while family income rose only 147 percent.

As taxpayers, we are subsidizing inflationary spending on the part of higher education. There is no incentive to cut costs if you know that the money will keep pouring in and that the government will enable the students to afford the rising tuition. Until parents refuse to pay the rising tuition at some of the prestige schools, we will continue to have this problem.

The Harvard University website reports:

The complete budget at Harvard College (exclusive of transportation) for 2012-2013 is $57,950. Tuition – $37,576; Room and Board – $13,630; College Facilities Fees (for use of library and other University facilities including the Health Services) – $3,290; Minimum for extras (books, clothing, dues, recreation, etc.) – $3,454.

In some parts of America, you can buy a house for that amount.

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Consequences Of Some Small Print In ObamaCare

CNS News reported today that the U. S. Treasury has released data stating that the outstanding balance for all of the direct student loans the federal government has issued topped $600 billion in April.

The article reports:

In January 2009, when Obama was inaugurated, the balance was $119.803 billion and has since increased more than fivefold.

The $480.654 billion increase since January 2009 in what is owed to the Treasury in direct student loans represents a climb of about 250 percent in just over four years.

What happened?

The article explains:

Before Obama’s first term, federally guaranteed student loans were made both by the government directly and by private lenders using their own capital through what was called the Federal Family Education Loan program. Language inserted into the the Obamacare law signed in March 2010, however, abolished the latter type of federally guaranteed student loan, giving the U.S. Treasury a monopoly over those loans.

As the Congressional Research Service has described it, this Obamacare provision made the U.S. Treasury the exclusive “banker” for federally guaranteed student loans. Thus, U.S. taxpayers essentially own these loans.

This is the housing bubble played out in student loans. The American taxpayer is the lender in these loans.

The article reminds us:

If the students who have borrowed the current outstanding balance of $600 billion in federal direct student loans default on those loans–or if Congress forgives them their debts–the burden of that $600 billion loss will fall on U.S. taxpayers.

This is not pocket change. This could well be our next financial crisis.

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Running The Economy When You Don’t Understand Business Principles

The Wall Street Journal posted an article online today entitled, “You Don’t Owe That.”

The article reports:

We’ll have to wait until Friday to see how slowly the U.S. economy expanded in the second quarter. But today Team Obama will tell Congress about its latest proposals to spread the wealth around—specifically from private lenders to the people who owe them money on student loans. The goal is to create new ways for borrowers to avoid repayment.

The government is focusing of ways to allow students to default on their loans. There are about $1 trillion in student loans outstanding; close to $900 billion are federal loans. About 90 percent of recent student loans are held by the government.

The article states:

The new report (by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) says that Congress should consider letting borrowers discharge their private student loans through bankruptcy. This would reverse a hard lesson learned during the 1970s. After a surge in former students declaring bankruptcy to avoid repaying their loans, Congress acted to protect lenders beginning in 1977. First it limited the ability of borrowers with government loans to use bankruptcy as a bailout ramp, and later the ban was applied to all student loans (with some exceptions for hardship cases).This reform also protected future borrowers.

Credit miraculously becomes more available when lenders believe they might be repaid.

You would think that the government might want to teach future leaders of American that when you sign a paper saying you will pay something back, you are supposed to mean it.

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Having It Both Ways On Religious Organizations

On Friday CNS News posted an article about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLFP) that President Obama signed into law on January 31 of this year. The government took over the student loan program in July of 2010. Now we are beginning to see the consequences.

The article reports:

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program was created by Congress in 2007 to encourage graduates to go into public service professions. The program forgives the balances of student loans for such graduates after they have made 120 full payments.

The new rules deny loan forgiveness to graduates who chose to go into public service with a religious orientation.

Religious organizations are seen as separate from public service in this law, yet in the healthcare law religious organizations are included and required to violate their consciences. The PSLFP also rules out labor unions and partisan political organizations. At least that makes sense.

The article further reports:

The Obama administration views anything the church does outside of the church building itself as not covered by the First Amendment’s religious liberty language.

Just as ObamaCare gave the Obama administration incredible power to regulate the health care industry – power it is now using to mandate limits to how Catholics live out their faith in America – the government takeover of the student loan business has empowered government to make these  new student loans forgiveness rules, by which the administration again attacks religious organizations that dare to reach out to the broader community.

Religious organization often view community outreach ministries as part of their religious mission. A church operating a free clinic for the poor, a shelter for the homeless, or gathering clothing and food for the less fortunate often views its efforts as both living out the will of the Savior and seeking to bring more people to Him. In other words, charity is often also a form of proselytizing.

The bottom line here is simple. The First Amendment protects the free exercise of religion. Most Christians interpret that as the freedom to practice their religion; the Obama Administration interprets that as the freedom to worship inside their church walls. The Obama Administration is attempting to take the morals of Christianity out of the public discourse. It’s time for all freedom-loving Americans to wake up and stop this assault on one of our basic freedoms.

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