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President Obama and Elizabeth Warren
President Obama announced new executive action to ease student debt Monday. The plan is intended to reduce student loan payments and to try to ease the economic drag that massive student loan debt has created. The action helps borrowers by capping repayments at 10 percent of their monthly income.
Mr. Obama’s main action will be to expand on a 2010 law that capped borrowers’ repayments at 10 percent of their monthly income. The intent is to extend such relief to an estimated five million people with older loans who are currently ineligible—those who got loans before October 2007 or stopped borrowing by October 2011. But the relief would not be available until December 2015, officials said, given the time needed for the Education Department to propose and put new regulations into effect.

Also, Mr. Obama will announce that the department will renegotiate contracts with companies that service federal loans to give them additional financial incentives to help borrowers avoid delinquency or default. The Education and Treasury Departments are to work with the nation’s largest tax-preparation firms, H&R Block and Intuit Inc., to ensure that borrowers are aware of repayment options and tax credits for college tuition.

The White House released a fact sheet on the proposal.

Obama also endorsed Sen. Elizabeth Warren's legislation to revamp the federal student program. It would allow people to refinance their existing high-rate student loans at a lower rate. The new rates would be capped at 3.86 percent for individuals who took out undergraduate loans and 6.41 percent for parents who took the loans for their children and for graduate school borrowers. The lower loan rates would be paid for through higher taxes on the wealthy. So, of course, Republicans are opposed. And, of course, they will block it.

The plans by both the president and Warren are a key part of the Democratic 2014 "Fair Shot" agenda, a focus on the key economic issues for the middle class, and an effort to energize the base. The difference is that President Obama has the power of the executive office so that he can make at least part of this happen. That's good politics because it has results. Warren's legislation is good politics, too, because it highlights one more time that the Republicans are working against the interests of the majority of Americans.

1:28 PM PT: Read the transcript of President Obama's remarks here.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 11:18 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  If it helps students, (19+ / 0-)

    then obviously Republicans will come out against it in 3..2...1...

    "We must hang together,...else, we shall most assuredly hang separately."

    by GreatDane on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 11:22:21 AM PDT

  •  if it includes parent plus loans (22+ / 0-)

    i would no longer have to pay 40% of my social security to sallie mae

    fact does not require fiction for balance (proudly a DFH)

    by mollyd on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 11:43:30 AM PDT

  •  Few talk about the Public Service option (14+ / 0-)

    you can take a job with a Public Service (local government, charity, non-profit) employment and after 10 years of payments, have your student loans forgiven.  In that 10 years you can be part of the income based repayment plan (the 10% cap).

    Yeah, you'r taking a lower paying job for ten years (9 years and 11 months won't count) but you also pay less due to your income and then have the loan forgiven.

    So say you have $100,000 in student loans, you get a job as a clerk at the City run Food Bank for $28,000 a year.  You have a payment around $230 a month for ten years, pay off about 20,000 and the remaining $80,000 is forgiven.  And you are helping people.

    This does not apply to military service though.  (some parts say it does, but when you apply it won't count military service as public service, even though it says in the examples it does the people on the phone say no.)

    Stupid question hour starts now and ends in five minutes.

    by DrillSgtK on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 11:48:59 AM PDT

  •  It's very good to see action being taken on behalf (10+ / 0-)

    of those carrying around this burden, and further action being proposed.
       This is a vitally important practical issue for so many Americans now, and therefore a great political issue as well.

      Good policy is good politics.

    "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

    by elwior on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 12:13:30 PM PDT

  •  Great! way to go President Obama and Sen. Warren!! (12+ / 0-)

    liberal pragmatist. artist. obama supporter.

    by hardart on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 12:25:14 PM PDT

  •  I deal with students every day who really need ... (12+ / 0-)

    I deal with students every day who really need some relief. College is getting to be too expensive for too many.

  •  default based on unemployment (12+ / 0-)

    I've been unemployed for almost 3 years and my loans are in default.  I know I'm not the only one, but is this new legislation going to address this part of the problem.  I'm tired of getting calls everyday about my loans and explaining that I've been looking for work, but I cannot pay off any of my loans.

    •  ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      They won't give you a deferment or forbearance?  In the past, when I've been out of work I was able to get one for my loans... albeit I wasn't out of work for 3 years.

      The other bad part is the inability to discharge the loans in BK.

      •  my forebearence during bankrupcy (0+ / 0-)

        added about 30k to my debt

        fact does not require fiction for balance (proudly a DFH)

        by mollyd on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 07:35:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You run out of forbearance time and deferment time (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Then there is nothing more that can be done for you and you run into default, We would be in default right now, except for the two year law about the government paying the extra amount over the interest that is accrued when the principal amount is too large a payment per month for the persons income. We have only been able to pay on our loans for about one year, the rest of the time we qualified for deference or forbearance, but this doesn't help when the interest just keeps building and building.

    •  If you have been unemployed, you should be able... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      If you have been unemployed, you should be able to at least get a forbearance, if not a deferment. When I was drawing unemployment, my loan was deferred. Currently., I am either under-employed or part time, which can still give you eligibility for relief. Check with your loan servicer.

  •  Hallelujah!!! (5+ / 0-)

    This may save me in retirement. Seriously.

    Helping a food pantry on the Cheyenne River Reservation,Okiciyap.

    by betson08 on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 01:01:19 PM PDT

  •  Yay (5+ / 0-)

    ...but it still leaves people out.

    I'm paying $500 a month in student loans and that's still less than 10% of my monthly salary.  

    Fine, you might ask, clearly you are making enough you can afford it.  Which is technically true, I'm not struggling like many (most) are.  But I still think it's utter bullshit that someone is profiting off the stupid interest rate I'm paying for higher education.

    That's why I'm eagerly awaiting Warren's bill.

    GOD! Save me from your followers.

    by adversus on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 01:05:02 PM PDT

  •  Good stuff from the President. (9+ / 0-)

    Glad to see he's taking some action on this issue.

  •  This is a band-aid (20+ / 0-)

    What really needs to happen is something needs to be done about the cost of attending University in's absurd.  In Germany the average cost of a year of tuition at Uni for a year is between 4-5% of an average German's yearly income.  In the US it's closer to 50%.  

    That's completely unsustainable and obscene to load young people with that kind of debt.  Slaves are made such ways.

    Dammit Jim, I'm a lawyer, not a grammarian. So sue me.

    by Pi Li on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 01:21:19 PM PDT

  •  I just love the picture that goes with this diary. (5+ / 0-)

     It'd be a great shot to see in 2016!

    "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

    by elwior on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 01:22:52 PM PDT

  •  Interest on student loans (10+ / 0-)

    should be no higher than what the Fed offers to banks.

  •  Yeah Baby!! 2n term ... Here we GO!!!! (0+ / 0-)
  •  Fantastic! (8+ / 0-)

    My debt has been eating into my Social Security check. I am not alone in this. Many of us debtors are seniors.

    We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

    by occupystephanie on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 01:31:35 PM PDT

  •  But Obama hates America (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and especially dislikes anything resembling being progressive on economic issues.

    by DAISHI on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 01:32:13 PM PDT

  •  Prediction: GOP in House will call for impeachment (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sister Havana, Munchkn, portlandzoo

    of this "Imperial President" for this unilateral action, riding roughshod over the constitution, ignoring seperation of powers...Oh, just fill in the blanks.

    •  Well, since Congress hasn't been doing their jo... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sister Havana

      Well, since Congress hasn't been doing their job (voting"no" on everything--except to repeal Obamacare every month--like something different will happen on day [Einstein's definition of insanity]), they are asking for what they are getting--next to their approval ratings, which are 1/5 that of the President. ...

  •  Sallie Mae (8+ / 0-)

    I'll believe it when I see it.  My daughter, a teacher, is a single-parent.  Between health insurance costs and student loans she is unable to live on her own.  Oh - and she was married, her dirt bag husband ran off after the baby was born.  She hasn't seen a cent in child support.

    She works in an under-served school in a high poverty area in Maine, but because her loans are through Sallie Mae she is not eligible for any loan forgiveness after 10 years, she cannot refinance, etc.  I'm being held hostage by it also as I am the cosigner.  

    I'm sick of all folks who spew that she should have worked harder/saved more.  She went to a public university and she did work.  She is now working towards her master's (which the school system is paying for).  Her salary will increase by $2000 a year once she earns that.  Seems hardly worth it, but she is determined.

    •  ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Can't Sallie Mae loans be discharged via Chapter 7?  I mean, not the greatest option, but she could buy a house after 3 years through FHA and it isn't the end of the world to your credit (I speak from experience). I can't image it would be tougher than the two of you are experiencing now.

  •  Make good choices (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WillR, mattc129, Caj, Sparhawk

    Come on.  Go to a school you can afford or afford to pay back at a reasonable time period.  Yeah, you may want to go to some bigger name school but you dont need to go to that school.   Pick a degree that will earn some money or pick another major.  Lets have some reality in this.  I am sick of those who went to schools where every year cost more than a fancy car.  All my kids went to schools that were not their first choices, paid and earned a huge bit of their own costs and graduated with less than $20K in loans which are manageable.  I support public service to a degree.  Seriously, if you have $100K in student debt, you have already made poor choices.  Dont expect others to cover that for you.  Maybe public service up to the equivalent of your state school cost (tuition and room/board) but not a blank check.  

    •  ... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sagesource, Odysseus, Munchkn

      If you go to grad school, you can easily amass 100K of student debt.  Sometimes the income, especially at the start, takes a while to reflect the cost spent on the education.   While I respect the go to a state college argument and do consider it valid, to assume you made a bad choice if your student debt is 100K is an ignorant statement.  

      You are missing the point OF the public service option... its to actually get high quality candidates into difficult to fulfill positions.  Its a carrot...

      •  High quality? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Caj, Sparhawk

        I refuse to believe that quality is tied to the school you attended and its cost.   And as for grad school, if it is going to set you up to earn enough to pay off your loans, this is a moot discussion, pay off your loans and be done with it.  If you amass 100K in debt and cant pay off your loan, you made bad choices.

        •  "I refuse to believe...." (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lying eyes, Odysseus, The Gryffin, Munchkn

          Well then. But it is very much easier to get a job with a degree from Harvard than a degree from Podunk U. Even if Podunk U. actually did a better job in educating you. Can you understand that?

          This is the landscape that we understand, -
          And till the principle of things takes root,
          How shall examples move us from our calm?

          (Mary Oliver, "Beyond the Snow Belt.")

          by sagesource on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 03:04:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  you can refuse to believe all you want (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Odysseus, Munchkn

          my education at a private university was vastly superior to the state university.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 04:05:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  This is funny (0+ / 0-)

            this still cracks me up.  Sad part is some people will actually believe this.

            •  I attended both private and public (0+ / 0-)

              private was superior you might not like that but it's the actual truth of my experiences.

              Der Weg ist das Ziel

              by duhban on Tue Jun 10, 2014 at 07:31:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Data point of 1 (0+ / 0-)

                Granted, I do not dispute your personal experiences.  It is a anecdotal data point of one.  It is also very subjective.  What constitutes "better" ?  More teacher access, better facilities, better library and what is better in each of these instances.  Better for one person is not necessarily better for someone else.  

                •  it's not a data of one (0+ / 0-)

                  It's a data of 2 college campuses and Chemistry programs. That said I've talked to many many other chemists and let me tell you the trend of that is that private is still better. That said what constitutes better is a good question and it can vary a bit. But for Chemists it's access to instruments (as theoretical knowledge while nice can not beat practical hands on experience), it's a strong support and mentoring network, it's having access to research opportunities which provide practical experience.

                  I'm sure there are some public institutions that can be as good as most private institutions but those (like the UC system) tend to be the exceptions that prove the rule. Not to mention they tend to be every bit as expensive as a private institute.

                  Der Weg ist das Ziel

                  by duhban on Tue Jun 10, 2014 at 08:57:16 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  the last President who went to a public university (0+ / 0-)

                  was President Carter.  This while 80% of college students go to public institutions.

                  The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

                  by nextstep on Tue Jun 10, 2014 at 11:55:04 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

    •  State schools aren't exactly cheap these days... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lying eyes, Odysseus, Munchkn, rhauenstein

      University of Illinois estimates the cost for an incoming freshman to attend per year (including tuition & fees, books, room & board, and misc. living expenses) is $30,150-$35,154 - for an Illinois resident.

      Granted, U of I is the flagship state university. Costs for some of the others...

      Northern Illinois University is $24,650.40 per the tuition estimator (assuming 15 hours/semester, choosing the least expensive residence hall and meal plan)
      Illinois State University is $22,942.
      Southern Illinois University is $25,300.

      Again - these are all in-state rates. Someone attending one of these universities for all four years could quite easily graduate with $100K of student loan debt.

      Yes we can! Yes we did! Yes we will!

      by Sister Havana on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 02:40:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  granted (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Ok, different states have a wide range of costs.  How about work study?  Summer jobs?  If you are really so poor that your family can not contribute at all and you have the grades to get into school, you will get some aid.  The only ones paying full fare, receiving no aid and having to borrow the full cost would seem to be lazy rich kids or am i missing something?

        •  Summer jobs? (5+ / 0-)

          Jesus Christ, you do live on another planet, don't you?

          The chancellor of one of the local universities is an economist, and worked his way through university pumping gas at a gas station. Just out of curiosity, one day he calculated what hourly salary a kid would have to get for the same job to be able to do what he did with his money. It came out to over $25 an hour.

          So, if you can find part-time or summer jobs that pay $25 an hour, I guess you're set. Can you?

          This is the landscape that we understand, -
          And till the principle of things takes root,
          How shall examples move us from our calm?

          (Mary Oliver, "Beyond the Snow Belt.")

          by sagesource on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 03:08:28 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think this is a false dichotomy (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Odysseus, in the Trees

            Thanks to wage stagnation, we can't come close to making the same dent with a summer job as people did in previous generations.

            Even so, working still makes a huge difference in loan debt.  It doesn't have to cover everything to be helpful; if it can cut $40K off a $90K cost of college, that's a very significant reduction in loan burden.

            A source of money doesn't have to cover everything to be worthy of consideration, and the parent poster certainly shouldn't be mocked for suggesting it.

            Taking jokes seriously is the exact mirror activity of laughing if someone says they have cancer. --jbou

            by Caj on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 04:40:12 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Huh? (0+ / 0-)

            No one said they had to cover the whole cost.  If they work even minimum wage they may earn enough to pay for some books, transportation costs, learn some work skills.  

        •  At U of I, the % of FT students receiving grants (0+ / 0-)

          who initially enrolled in 2013-2014 was 48%. That's a lot of lazy rich kids who didn't get grants!

          Yes we can! Yes we did! Yes we will!

          by Sister Havana on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 03:19:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Grtants (0+ / 0-)

            52 % were deemed to not need aid.  So they need to get a job, borrow some $$, go to a school they can afford, study hard and apply for scholarships and their parents need to fork over some $$ if this is important to them.  The parents need to make good choices as well and not live beyond their means. They need to save for education if it is important.

        •  You're missing something (6+ / 0-)

          Based upon my prof school experience, it appears schools take as a given that a student will max out on loans and then craft an aid package to make up the difference.  As loan caps are increased, tuition is increased to meet them.  I would posit that it is the ready availability of significant funding options that has led to the runaway costs of higher education.  

          Work-study (if it still exists) only paid minimum wage when I was a student.  It provided money for incidentals and the basic costs of living, nothing more.  

          •  I keep saying this (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            orestes1963, in the Trees

            People accuse me of being right wing.

            The more money you pour into higher education in the form of grants, loans, and financial aid, the higher prices colleges will charge for tuition.

            This principle should be the bedrock principle upon which all government aid programs are premised; the idea that given half a chance to raise tuition, colleges will do it in an instant. I'm not saying all aid programs should be ended, but they should be sharply curtailed from present levels and carefully targeted. The entire aid program should be premised on an economic understanding of the above fact.

            Do this, and tuitions will plummet. Will Northeastern go out of business, or are they going to have to learn to live on $30k/student or whatever of tuition money? No, they'll cut salaries where appropriate, fire useless administrators, stop paying for expensive facilities maintenance, and generally wind their operations down to be consistent with the cash tuition  that students are willing and able to pay.

            (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
            Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

            by Sparhawk on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 08:09:36 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Huh (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              I find it odd that lowering costs for education would be seen as right wing.  That thought never entered my mind.  My view on this comes from personal experience.  Between my first and second years of law school, the loan caps were raised by $5,000.  Without a pause, my tuition was raised by $5,000 for the second year.  Granted, it also increased another $1,200 the following year, but that was more in line with their historic increases.

            •  You Are Correctly Using Basic Economic Principles (0+ / 0-)

              in your thinking.  A vastly increased money supply will increase the price.  School capacity wouldn't have increased so dramatically if schools weren't making a very healthy profit.

              There are other factors also included in the higher costs of college.  Compare the overall standard of living that students expect today with the overall standard of living that a student expected 30-40 years ago.  Those increased costs are included in the estimates by the colleges and are paid for by the loans.  But they would be paid for even if the student decided not to attend college.  Things that are now considered a necessity, Wifi in your apartment, unlimited cell phone plans, laptops, etc. are considered part of a college education when they are not.

      •  These numbers include the cost of living (0+ / 0-)

        It's easy to quote a high cost of college if one throws in the cost of living for those four years---in that respect, even a school with free tuition would cost about 40 grand.

        I think it's also important to point out that you should not have a student debt equal or close to the full-ride cost of college.  If you go to NIU and choose to live in the dorms for the whole 4 years, your total cost can be nearly $100K---but you're not supposed to put that whole thing on credit.

        I would agree with the parent poster that you shouldn't have $100K in debt for an undergraduate degree, and that you certainly don't have to acquire that level of debt.  However, there are some states, like CA, where public school is far more expensive, and people are sometimes screwed by circumstances, like having to stay a fifth year.  

        Taking jokes seriously is the exact mirror activity of laughing if someone says they have cancer. --jbou

        by Caj on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 04:20:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If your plan is to graduate... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          as an undergraduate with more than $25,000 in debt, then I think you better know you have a job with daddy when you get out or you should seriously look at other options. Maybe do a few years at a community college or regional campus if they offer a lower rate.

          I can understand that a graduate or professional degree can be costly and there are no real merit or need-based loans to compensate. My brother, sister, and I all got through undergraduate school by being RA's in a dorm. That got us room and board for free. In grad school, we were all graduate assistants. That usually got us free tuition and for some of us a small stipend, also.

          I'll sympathize with law students who recently came out. For a long time, it did look like the sky was the limit if you got a law degree. Debt of $100 - $150k didn't seem problematic. Then the job and salary market crashed. I can see that as a problem. For undergrad degrees with big debt, I'm sorry, but I really don't have a lot of sympathy for a lot of students in those situations. They just made poor choices.

        •  A Lifestyle Doesn't Have To Be $40,000 A Year... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I never had a private bedroom.  We always bunked 2 to a bedroom.  It is a lifestyle choice.  But I wanted to graduate debt free  .  I have lived in a college town for 25 years and have seen the apartments that have been built as the University increased enrollment.  Apartments that are less than a mile from the University have shuttle busses.  That is part of the $40,000 lifestyle students choose.  Along with unlimited cell phone plans, Top End laptops, etc.

    •  Rec'd with reservations from this 27yo (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lying eyes, Caj, OrganicChemist

      I definitely fall into the category of people who think students should be wiser in their college choices, particularly middle to upper-middle class kids who chose these liberal arts colleges priced at or higher than some Ivies. I agree that it's ridiculous to pay $60,000 a year for Marist, or Connecticut College, or insert other average college here. Frankly, these colleges attract your east coast average student who isn't smart enough to get into a better school but have parents who can fit part of that bill.

      However, there is a more blame to go around than just kids making poor decisions. First, our parents share blame by instilling in us since we could understand language that we had to go to college no matter what. Coupled with the fact that most of our parents' semesters cost less than we currently pay just for books. There is a lot of cognitive disconnect about college costs, especially from legislators.

      Lastly, regarding major choices, I fully agree that high schoolers should pay more attention to salary caps on given jobs. We often get the liberal arts defenders here, but I can have a specialized skill and critical thinking skills together. I don't need to write a paper on Goethe to learn that.

      •  When I was teaching Chinese history.... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Odysseus, Munchkn, OrganicChemist

        ....I wanted to assign a book of translations as one of the texts. I still had my old copy, and it was priced at $2.95. However, I noticed that on the text order form, there was no information given to the professor as to how expensive the text would be for the students. It turned out to be over twenty dollars. That shortened the required reading list by one book.....

        This is the landscape that we understand, -
        And till the principle of things takes root,
        How shall examples move us from our calm?

        (Mary Oliver, "Beyond the Snow Belt.")

        by sagesource on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 03:11:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You Are An Exception... (0+ / 0-)

          At least when I was in college in the early 70's, Professors didn't care how expensive a book was or whether I could buy it used.  

          •  And then they changed the books.... (0+ / 0-)

            ...virtually every year, at least in mass-market classes, to ensure that used copies would be misleading.

            This is the landscape that we understand, -
            And till the principle of things takes root,
            How shall examples move us from our calm?

            (Mary Oliver, "Beyond the Snow Belt.")

            by sagesource on Tue Jun 10, 2014 at 08:39:20 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  "Pick a degree that will earn some money" (7+ / 0-)

      You should tell that to all the MBA's who were doing just that and hit a brick wall. Then law students...

      These things aren't all predictable and not everyone is suited to being an engineer.

      As for poor choices, the entire society is built on them, such as tax breaks for the reach, surging in Afghanistan instead of investing in jobs, far too little too late on Climate Change, bailing out bankers not homeowners, etc., etc. Don't just single out students with high debt.

      I've never left a blank space on a ballot... but I will not vote for someone [who vows] to spy on me. I will not do it. - dclawyer06

      Trust, but verify. - Reagan
      Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

      by Words In Action on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 02:56:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  fix your own world first (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        in the Trees

        I agree that there are plenty of screwed up priorities.  Students aren't the only one to blame but they can take some responsibility and fix their problems.  They cant change the surge in Afghanistan but they can make a quick cost benefit analysis on their loan terms and school choices.  

    •  I strongly disagree (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus, Sister Havana, Munchkn

      I believe that every student should have the opportunity to attend the best school academically available to him/her.  This is not some fantasy position as it was once the standard.  When I attended school in the 80's, I was able to choose without concern for cost or employability, notwithstanding that I was the first member of my family lines to attend college and came from working class parents who could not afford to contribute anything to my higher education.  Through a scholarship, state and federal grants, and a small loan (my entire debt was $10,000, which seemed like a lot then), I was able to attend one of the finest schools in the country.  The quality of that education has been a resource that I have utilized throughout my life.  

      It saddens me that young people in the same position do not have the opportunities that I had.  And it is wrong.  If we believe in an equitable society, we have to ensure that every young person has the same educational opportunities, without regard to ability to pay.  

      •  As Long As You Have Private Schools... (0+ / 0-)

        like Harvard, Rice, Northwestern, Notre Dame, etc., your Dream will never be achieved.  They have a finite capacity and demand will always exceed their ability to teach at an elite level.  Since they are private schools they can pretty much set any reasonable criteria to set admittance standards.

        Even top level State institutions such as UCLA, U. of Texas, etc. cannot meet demand and limit admittance.  University systems have expanded satellite campuses to help with demand.  But attending the University of Texas at Tyler is not the same as attending the University of Texas at Austin.

        Some students will always have to attend a University that is not "the best school academically available to him/her".

    •  A well educated populace is a national resource. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Gryffin, Munchkn

      There is no reason why state schools have to charge tuition at all.

      -7.75 -4.67

      "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

      There are no Christians in foxholes.

      by Odysseus on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 05:30:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  $1.2 trillion in student debt is an obscenity. (6+ / 0-)

    Education shouldn't be unaffordable because today's jobs require education. And schools with huge endowments should put more of that money to use offering scholarships.

    An uneducated America is an America without a future in today's world. America needs to re-think its priorities, instead of permitting the already-entitled few to set them.

    I'm for truth, no matter who tells it. I'm for justice, no matter who it's for or against. ~ Malcolm X -8.62 -8.36

    by 4Freedom on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 02:01:56 PM PDT

    •  A growing portion of that debt (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      4Freedom, Odysseus, Munchkn

      is related to the growth of for-profit educational institutions.  As profit centers, they are more concerned with getting students to sign on the dotted line for outrageous debt than they are with ensuring that they graduate.  Once they get the money, they don't care for much else.  The DOE has guidelines for aid tied to graduation rates, but those have been loosened to allow the smart entrepreneurs to make money.  It is no coincidence that a fair number of these schools are owned, in whole or in part, by private equity firms.  It's another market to exploit.  

      •  Black Rock, Carlyle, those are some of the (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        orestes1963, Munchkn

        names holding the equity in those institutions.

        And the Bush name is practically synonymous with the Carlyle Group. Neil Bush is in the mix selling standardized tests to schools.

        Lovely crew.

        I'm for truth, no matter who tells it. I'm for justice, no matter who it's for or against. ~ Malcolm X -8.62 -8.36

        by 4Freedom on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 04:56:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Most of the for profit schools... (0+ / 0-)

        should just be cut off. There are quite a few public schools that should be cut off, too.

        I'll give a caveat - it used to be I thought the University of Phoenix was just a big scam. I'm slowly changing my opinion of them. I think they are beginning to offer some very credible programs to a segment of the market that can benefit from them. Their quality is still a bit uneven, but I actually think they have some promise. There are some public institutions that do a far worse job than they do.

        •  Based upon reports I've read (0+ / 0-)

          I would strongly disagree about Phoenix.  They're the educational equivalent of a get rich quick scheme.  They target students who simply want a diploma with their name on it.  Phoenix does not provide a decent education.  I am particularly alarmed at their graduate degree programs.  At some level a college degree has become the equivalent of a high school diploma, so I can understand the desire to just get the credential.  But they do a real disservice to students seeking a higher degree.

          •  I'm not if favor... (0+ / 0-)

            of any kind of an on-line graduate degree. To do something of that complexity with the appropriate rigor is not possible by that method. I do have some appreciation of many of the undergrad programs, however. I think those are useful for many people and have just as much quality as many of the so-called public institutions.

  •  Populist Obama always shows up in election years (0+ / 0-)

    and promptly disappears after election day.  It's amazing more people haven't caught on by now.

  •  ... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catkin, mattc129, Words In Action

    What about grad school loans?

  •  Why can't students get loans at the Treasury (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Words In Action

    overnight rate, the rate charged banks?

    Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

    by Anne Elk on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 02:27:47 PM PDT

    •  I don't think there would be a problem... (0+ / 0-)

      if the students put up the collateral that the banks do and if they paid their loans back in full by 8:00am the next business day.

      •  I am not suggesting they act like banks, (0+ / 0-)

        but the government can offer interest-free loans, which is essentially what lots of other countries do. It's one reason why a $50K dental surgery in the US becomes a $5K surgery in Mexico at equivalent quality.

        Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

        by Anne Elk on Tue Jun 10, 2014 at 11:47:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  A good step, but focus needs to be on price (6+ / 0-)

    Capping payments to 10% of income is great, but with incomes already so low relative to where they should be all you're doing is increasing the length of repayment (unless I missed that after X number of years the balance is forgiven).

    The focus needs to be the ever-increasing price of college. Lowering the interest rate helps, but speaking as a 27yo with many friends whose lives are on hold it seems like a band aid.

  •  Gross or net income? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Words In Action
  •  But Nothing for Private Loans (0+ / 0-)

    apparently.  Very easy to top-out on the federal/guaranteed loans in the tuition inflection era.  Private interest rates are higher, repayment options are much more limited, + fees, fees, fees, and that is where the truly crippling debt lies.

  •  How about we talk about debt forgiveness (0+ / 0-)

    & have the government assume the debt for this generation & then cap interest rates at the same amount banks barrow at... 0.002%

    “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

    by Tool on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 03:22:11 PM PDT

  •  A fart in a whirlwind (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    orestes1963, Odysseus, The Gryffin

    I'm a bankruptcy lawyer, and I'm here to tell you that these announced changes are a fart in a whirlwind.  The amount of federal student loans you can borrow is capped.  I frequently hear the number $57,000.00 from my clients.

     But a year's tuition is $40,000 or more for undergrad.  By the time you hit your second year, you are are out of federal student loans and you have to start borrowing private money from loansharks like Wells Fargo.  My clients come to me with $150,000 in private guaranteed student loans, and $57000 in federal student loans.  And then they can't get a job with their law degree, or they can't get a residency with their med school degree.  

    So, now, I can say "Good news!  Your payments are capped at 10% of your income on your $57000 student loans.  But you have to figure out some way to pay $3000.00 a month on your remaining loans.  Piss off.".  There is no way to file bankruptcy for these people, no way to negotiate, and no way to cut them a break.

    Do you know that if you can't pay your student loans, and they get declared in default, a 40% penalty is added on?  Again and Again?  So the poor fool who is driving bus for minimum wage because he can't get a job in his field sees his private student loans go from $10,000 to $100,000 in no time flat.  And I can't help. No one can.

    Obama's proposed plan is crap.  It won't even slow the bleeding.

    •  $40,000? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      But a year's tuition is $40,000 or more for undergrad.

      I'm a professor at a top-100-ranked public university, and our tuition is a little over $8000 in-state.  This is an amount roughly consistent with the national average for in-state tuition.  $40,000 roughly enough for four years of school, not one year.

      If your clients go to colleges that charge them $40,000 per year in tuition alone, then yes, they are not going to be helped by this executive order---but they are not likely to get substantial relief from any reasonable thing the government can do for them.

      Taking jokes seriously is the exact mirror activity of laughing if someone says they have cancer. --jbou

      by Caj on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 05:10:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  A start. Now make the interest rate same as the (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    banks get!

  •  Great, now do something to reinstate UI for 2.7M (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    My son lived here completely free for the past three years.  Paid his cell phone, now half of his ACA and feeds himself sometimes.  So he got out of school with minimal debt but my car and house are a mess.

    Please, please, please President Obama do something about reinstating the 22 weeks of unemployment I qualify for or we will be in the street.  I could even fix my car (waste of money, I know) which would help me look for a job.

  •  I can't imagine how many more (0+ / 0-)

    "good politics" policies it's going to take to convince Republicans that Obama and Democrats are actually governing on behalf of them and motivate them to vote for Democrats.

    Warren's legislation is good politics, too, because it highlights one more time that the Republicans are working against the interests of the majority of Americans.
    After all, isn't that what "good politics" is supposed to accomplish?

    "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing" - Edmund Burke

    by SueDe on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 04:04:00 PM PDT

  •  Obama did not forgive all student loans (0+ / 0-)

    Oh gawd help me the links are telling me there's another republican diarrhea explosion.

  •  My problem is you can't get rid of them (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    if you are sick, but not permanently/totally disabled.  My cancer co-pays are getting ridiculous (even though I have decent insurance) and it's making it even harder to make payments.  But because I can still work (even though I can't find anything worth while, especially in my field) they won't get rid of them.  I was diagnosed 6 months after I graduated.

  •  Oh fuck whatever. (0+ / 0-)

    All the student loans should be waived, and education should be free.

    If we need to pay for it, I say we slit open Mitt Romney and pry the gold from his intestines.

    More people die from alcohol every year than from guns, so let's compromise--We'll take away the guns and those assholes can shoot each other to death with alcohol!

    by The Gryffin on Mon Jun 09, 2014 at 06:07:41 PM PDT

  •  Looking forward to it (0+ / 0-)

    This is a welcome reform.  It is unfortunate he didn't do this latest one with the one he did a couple years ago, because it really was arbitrary to leave pre-October 2007 borrowers out in the first place.  

    We still need major reform of student loan interest rates.  As things stand, even this new announcement by the president is risky if interest rates are not reformed.  That's because the ten percent rule can be risky if your interest is high enough that your balance ends up rising with only a ten percent contribution; if you're in public service, where loans are eventually forgiven tax-free, and you have to leave it for any reason, that can mean a very long repayment schedule and/or prohibitive taxes on any forgiveness.

    But even successful interest rate reform on loans will ultimately be somewhat compromised if the cost of education isn't tackled, and in order to do that, colleges and universities need to be audited for outcomes; they can't continue to get away with stringing along people who will never graduate, nor can they continue to get away with bait-and-switch tactics on financial aid; they need to be made to make a commitment to those they admit and at the same time they need an incentive to make sure problems are nipped in the bud so that they graduate on time.

    I think the appropriate way to deal with Republicans on this issue is to make it clear that the issue of taxing wealth and/or very high incomes to pay for these reforms is non-negotiable; to offer them instead stricter accountability for the universities, so that all places have a strong incentive to put their own full skin in the game without discriminating against the poor, and to reduce the net cost of education for the low income as far as possible.  The Obama Administration did right when they moved several years ago to force colleges to make public the data which made possible the reports hyperlinked above, but now we need more than information in order to get problems solved.

    Making the universities accountable, by requiring they not overburden students with loans and by preventing them from stringing along students for far longer than the typical four or five years, makes it politically much easier to start to beef up grant programs again, both in the form of boosting state university and college funding to historic norms, and in the form of grants direct to students to assist with tuition and living costs at public or private schools.

  •  Student Loans (0+ / 0-)

    When will people start taking responsibility for their own debts??? Is the only solution and way to buy votes from the ignorant to punish the "EVIL RICH'?  The presidents plan is good in that it is not asking to punish someone else in the form of higher taxes to help a student that foolishly accumulated too much student debt.  

    Warrens plan, on the other hand is punitive and unfair to those people who saved their money, from what was left of their monthly income.(after federal taxes, state taxes, property taxes, sales tax, phone, gas, utility taxes, and other) Sacrificed and lived within their means to invest.  And from that investment came a return in the form of capital gains.  It is not only the EVIL RICH that has capital gains.  It is the middle class in the form of 401K, and other investments to secure their futures.  

    You can't PUNISH one group of people that are responsible to help another group of people that was irresponsible.  The government already has programs that do that (welfare, food stamps, corporate welfare, etc. and how has that worked for everyone??)

    It is not the responsible taxpayers fault that students spent tens of thousand of dollars on an education, graduated and found themselves not being able to get a job that justifies the massive debt they got themselves into.

    I am all for them trying to get a lower rate, like home owners do.  But as a homeowner that did take advantage of lower rates, I would NEVER want someone else to pay higher taxes so that I could have a lower payment.  That is not fair.

    This whole class war fare has to stop.  It's time for those people to pay back the tax payers for financing their education and quit crying.  Grow up and get a job, even if you think you are too good because you are educated.  It is YOUR responsibility to pay it back.  

    I am so sick of the entitlement attitude of the students.  You were never entitled to an education you couldn't afford.  it's not the tax payers job to pay for your education.  

    Time to wake up and enter the REAL WORLD

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