Next time, ask the Reagan question before you vote

On January 1, 2019, as President Trump approaches his third state of the union address, people in America should pop the Reagan question: Are you better off than you were four years ago?

Those in the United States should ask, for example:

“Is my health insurance costing me more out of pocket than under Obama? Am I getting better, more affordable benefits?”

“Can I still get health insurance?”

“Have work restrictions been placed on my Medicare benefits? Has my state limited Medicare benefits?”

“Has my property tax bill gone up or down?”

“Has the rusty bridge carrying my daughter’s school bus been fixed?”

“I live in a city. Has my child developed asthma in the past year?”

“What’s the interest rate on a new car now?”

“Do I have to pay more for my prescription medications?”
Continue reading

Michigan rep. introduces a stimulus bill for the rest of us: the Student Loan Forgiveness Act of 2012

Back in 2007, as I was thinking about my little Dr. Sammy in 2008/EdF1rst project, I conceived a heresy. It went like this: What would happen if, as a massive economic stimulus, you forgave all outstanding student loan debt in America?

I knew from experience the impact that loan debt has on consumer spending. You have, at this point, a couple of generations who can’t afford to spend (or save) in service to the debt racked up getting their degrees (degrees, which, by the way, didn’t position them to pay off that debt in anything like a timely manner). My generation is and will continue to be underwater. The Millennials are well and truly fucked in ways that us Xers couldn’t have imagined in the 1980s. Continue reading

A college education should be a road to success, not a path to bankruptcy

This weekend George Bush did something so out-of-character that it seems impossible to believe–he signed into law new legislation that will actually benefit the American people. Specifically new laws that overhaul the corrupt and bloated student loan system:

The law, which received overwhelming bipartisan support in Congress, will slash federal subsidies to private loan companies and increase grants for students. It will gradually reduce interest rates on federally subsidized loans for low-income students to 3.4 percent over five years. The law will also offer loan forgiveness for those who have held public service jobs for 10 years and will cap payments on federal loans at a certain percentage of a college graduate’s income. Continue reading