Student Loan Forgiveness For Those Already Getting Taxpayer Money

Richard Blumenthal, the Democratic senator from Connecticut, has put forth a proposal to help those with student loan debt.  But this would only apply to those who get a job at a qualifying nonprofit organization, which would include government jobs.

Certain employees would see a gradual decrease in their outstanding student loan debt, with total forgiveness coming after 10 years.

It should be no surprise that a politician wants to buy votes.  But it is especially interesting that he wants to offer this vote-buying program only to those who choose not to work for a private, for-profit company.

Blumenthal stated, “Teachers, police officers, public health workers and other public servants should be applauded and supported – and not drowned in debt to pay for the degrees many such jobs require.”

So if this is the senator’s stance, then I guess he believes it is acceptable for private sector workers to drown in debt in jobs that require a degree.

One of the reasons that many cities and states are in so much trouble financially is because of promises made to government workers.  In particular, it is the huge pensions that are being paid to those who worked in professions such as teachers and police officers.

In other words, Blumenthal wants to hand over more taxpayer money, in the form of government loan forgiveness, to those who already are sucking the taxpayers dry.

Free Market Wages

Some people think I am against teachers, firefighters, and librarians, but I’m really not.  Some people think they are overpaid and some think they are underpaid.  I don’t really think either way, but the high demand for these occupations seem to indicate that they are generally overpaid by market standards.  But I’m sure there are some really great teachers and firefighters who should probably make more, and would make more in a free market.

The problem is that these are mostly government occupations.  The wages paid to the government employees are somewhat arbitrary.  The wages are not being determined through a free market pricing system, the way that other wages are determined.

It is no surprise that a Democratic senator in Washington DC wants to praise government work and buy votes.  It is no surprise that he considers them public servants, while he implies that private sector employees aren’t serving.  In reality, he has it mostly backwards.

If his proposed law became a reality, then it would be an added benefit for government employees.  This means it would be an added expense for taxpayers.  Since the free market isn’t determining the wages of these employees, it is easy for some windbag senator to come in and attempt to arbitrarily add benefits.  Who is to say whether this is deserved?  It certainly isn’t the free market.

Government Solutions

This is another case of where the government creates a problem and then just creates more problems by trying to solve the previous one.

It is the government that has encouraged and subsidized student loans, which has also contributed to the enormously high tuitions.  Now that the economy is weak and wages are down (thanks to the government and central bank), many young people are in over their heads with student loan debt.  It is mostly a government-created problem.

So the solution is obviously more government.  Just forgive the student loans and put the taxpayers on the hook for paying it back.  And only give this benefit to those who are in the nonprofit sector, particularly those who already get their full salary and benefits from the taxpayer.

Ultimately, I don’t think this proposed legislation will pass.  It is too blatant of a vote-buying program.  Sometimes the politicians need to learn to be a little more subtle.