Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Saturday, October 1, 2016

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is again calling on Congress to stop student loan rates from doubling on July 1. The senior senator from Massachusetts says that doing this comes down to two issues: money and values.

Speaking on the Senate floor on Thursday, she first covered the money, pointing out that the government actually profits off student loans:

Some have argued that we can’t afford to keep interest rates low. But let’s be clear: Right now the federal government is making a profit from our students. Just last month, the Congressional Budget Office calculated that the government will make $51 billion this year off student loans. Think about that. $51 billion. And that’s $16 billion higher than the earlier estimate. We have the money to cut interest rates—if we’re willing to reduce the profits we make from our students.

She then connected the loan issue to the bailouts of big banks to argue that we need to adjust our values to support students:

Have we become a people who will support our big banks with nearly free loans, while we crush our kids who are trying to get an education? The student loan program makes obscene profits on the backs of our students. This is morally wrong, and we must put a stop to it.

Our students don’t have high-paid lobbyists to look out for their interests, but they do have their voices. Petitions urging Congress to pass a short-term plan for interest rates to prevent them from doubling have already collected more than a million signatures. Our students and their families are asking for what is right. They are asking for something we can easily afford. Let’s show them that government can work for them.

Screen Shot 2013-06-10 at 3.14.45 PM

This chart from the Century Foundation makes it clear what’s largely behind the rise in cost of college, lower government funding being passed on to students:

20130320-graph-as-state-funding-for-higher-education-collapses-students-pay-the-diff

  • rustacus21

    & didn’t we just go thru this LAST SUMMER?!? Just curious…

  • rustacus21

    Once upon a time, the government felt so strongly about educating the citizenry, that it offered top-quality K-12 education & no to low-cost loans for one to acquire a Bachelors Degree. Then, the Reagan era & privatization hit the American people like a hammer & now the banks own our higher education finance system. The benefit of grants & low cost loans by the government produced remarkable benefits for the nation AND the world. W/privatization, we have a greed cycle that is pushing the American people, citizens of the world & life on the planet itself, to the point of extinction. I don’t mean to get overly dramatic, but continuing on our current trajectory, & while this & the next generation will be dead, the last generation of life as we now know it, will suffer excruciatingly, for the sins of our contemporary greed & ignorance that Democracy provides such a broad platform that the greedy rich can have a bunch, even while the poor prosper & nature thrives, b/c the RULES of Democracy FORCES US ALL to play by the same comprehensively FAIR set of rules across the board. But w/out education & self-Enlightenment, we’ll never know…

  • silence dogood

    The fake Indian was making $350,000 a year teaching two courses at Harvard Law. Do you think these kinds of outrageous salaries may be a big part of the education tuition “racket” ( a term she is very fond of).

    • charleo1

      I thought Right Wingers didn’t care what a person’s salary is, as long as
      they work in the private sector. But, I forgot, you all are not fond of teachers,
      colleges, or women in the workforce, unless she’s serving your beer, wearing
      a dress that shows the crack of her ass. And, so you’ve been to Harvard?
      And you know what constitutes an outrageous salary? The top five CEOs
      of the Nation’s largest health insurance companies, made 10 to 20 million
      dollars each, last year. That’s different because? You know, it’s people like Elizabeth Warren, that forfeited impressive salaries in the private sector, to serve in government, that we used to appreciate in this Country. Maybe
      that’s why Congress is so full of rats. Is because quality people just don’t
      want the constant bull shit, that comes with public service nowadays.

      • silence dogood

        Answer my questions and stop with the crap irrelevant to the question.

        • charleo1

          I wasn’t going to say anything about your question.
          But, since you asked. Yes, your question shows
          you’re an idiot.

          • silence dogood

            Your inept reply sustains my original point. If you were on a debate team you would be asked to stay home.

          • charleo1

            Can you recall if there ever was a time, when your original
            point was not sustained in your mind? That’s why I called
            you an idiot. Senator Warren’s genealogy bore no relevance
            to the issue of, student loans. And since you have no idea if
            her salary at Harvard was outrageous or not. Why would
            I respond to something you just pulled out of your ass?

          • silence dogood

            Get back to me when you get your GED. Although I imagined that would be a stretch for you.

      • Yappy2

        God post.

    • Sand_Cat

      Your posts are the best arguments for education on this site.

      • silence dogood

        A non sequitur.

  • Dominick Vila

    This is a lot worse than “morally wrong”. It is, in fact, suicidal for any nation hoping to sustain its standard of living, competitiveness, and its privileged position in the world. Instead of worrying about our dismal educational standings, especially in hard sciences, our elected officials are desperately trying to make it more difficult for students to get the higher education they need to succeed in a world where education is the key to successfully overcome the challenges that lie ahead.
    The goal should be to expand scholarships and grants for academically qualified students, rather than erecting barriers to prevent them from getting the education they need to succeed.
    I don’t have a problem with trying to reduce spending, when it is focused on eliminating waste, fraud, and making government more efficient, I do have a problem when the focus is on ill-conceived approaches detrimental to our future as a society and a country.

  • JDavidS

    The wet-dream of the 1%… Dumb down the citizenry, have a nice, compliant, poorly educated work-force, so fearful of losing one of their part-time, minimum wage jobs that they will do damned near anything we ask of them…Honest-to-Christ, is this what we want to come down to? If so, we can just continue to make any form of higher education out of reach for most people.

  • SibyllasStuff

    You know, it only took a little while for an IMMEDIATE change when the cut back on the staff of airline controllers brought airline travel to a slowdown.

    but students can get the shaft – oh yes, that’s right – I heard from a republican that the alternative plan is to tie the interest rates that students are required to sign for linked to the fluctuations of some entity GDP, ARM, Cost of Living Index.
    Oh well, maybe they will be better consumers (more savvy) than previous college students. I think they know the world is changing daily. I agree with Elizabeth Warren. She just makes better sense in this crazy world of gibmedat and I’ve got mine, you get yours.
    I agree with most of the comments here – how short sighted of any party or administration to NOT educate the next generation as well as the populace – if only we were being informed and not “entertained”.
    Now that people are getting upset about “security” that we allowed Congress to vote into law a number of years ago because we’re all “AFRAID” , yet nobody was talking about because we’re so “entertained” with whatever junk is on TV or what our “favorite” newscaster looks like. I guess that is what an uneducated and informed society does – and we’re told it is in our “Best” interest. Phooey.