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As I See It

Cancelling student debt would be teaching the wrong lesson

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Those who have attended college know how expensive a higher education can be. A four-year degree can easily cost in excess of $100,000 these days, and many students rely on student loans to pay their tuition. Now President Biden is considering cancelling some student debt, perhaps $10,000 or more per borrower. That would be a mistake. There is no magic wand he can wave to make the debt disappear. Instead, the cost would be borne by taxpayers. And it wouldn’t be cheap. If the federal government erased student debt for those earning $100,000 a year or less, it would cost taxpayers $938 billion. If the threshold was those making $50,000 per year, it would still cost taxpayers $437 billion. Why should a guy laying bricks have to pay anything so that a doctor who racked up a big student loan debt can have that erased? And what would that do to inflation, already running rampant? Most expect it would make it worse, because those currently making debt payments would be free to spend their money on other things, increasing demand and therefore inflation. A better idea than cancelling student debt is to allow borrowers to refinance, just like many have done with their mortgage, lowering their monthly bill through lower interest rates. Holding down the cost of a higher education would also help. But cancelling the debt altogether would run counter to what we learned long ago…there is no such thing as a free lunch.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Ronald Walker

    May 4, 2022 at 8:32 am

    Scott, your starting to sound like a conservative.
    Congratulations!

  2. Kent Porter

    May 5, 2022 at 11:34 am

    Why should millions of american’s have to pay off student loans for some father and mother who graduated from Harvard , then their kids went to Harvard , and I have to pay off their loan ,, I don’t think so , and Scott , thank God your turning into a Republican , WELCOME ABOARD BUDDY !!!!! !!!!!!!!

  3. Mike Sladky

    May 9, 2022 at 10:12 am

    Robert, I am glad you heeded my advice and finally stopped crying.

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