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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#20381 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 09:42

View Postkenberg, on 2022-August-28, 07:37, said:

I guess I will not think well of how he went at it no matter what comes of it. The approach seems clumsy.

Back in the 2006-2008 days you mention, I recall listening to the radio as I drove and NPR was interviewing some guy, a truck driver I think, who had bought maybe a five bedroom house on multiple acres with a mortgage with varying rates and he was in deep financial trouble. I thought "If I were he, I would not have made that purchase. If I were the bank loan manager, I would not have approved the loan. If I were setting the rules, I would not set them as they were set. The guy is having trouble? This is a surprise to someone?" That's pretty much the way I feel about the way the student loan program was set up and handled so far, and I don't feel all that much better about the way Biden is addressing the issue.

Also, I am not all that happy about Biden just being able to do it. If he can do it, others can do similar things. At least I voted for Biden and I approve of his general intentions. That will not always be the case.

So I am not so happy. So new?


People are gullible-and this comes as a shock to you? Trump University? No doc loans? Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker?
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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#20382 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 10:51

Megan Coyne 1
Fascist and semi-fascist assholes 0

Story: https://www.washingt...er-megan-coyne/
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#20383 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 14:15

View PostWinstonm, on 2022-August-28, 09:42, said:

People are gullible-and this comes as a shock to you? Trump University? No doc loans? Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker?


That was my point, from the beginning of my discussion of this. The student loan program was an open invitation to take advantage of the gullible and the invitation was eagerly accepted by con artists and the gullible, thus making the rest of us gullible as well. If it takes a quarter or half a trillion to partially temporarily solve some of its problems, it has been a very successful con job on us.

Here are the fundamentals. If we financially support people's educational efforts without expecting repayment, we feel entitled to watch to see that our financial support is well used. If, instead, we lend people money then we are much more inclined to mind our own business. They will be paying it back so why butt in? Ok, so the program was constructed as a loan program to lessen supervision, then, after the deficit became mammoth, the push was to cancel the debt and turn it into a support without repayment program, dodging the supervision that a support without repayment program would receive is it were originally announced as such.

Very clever, and it appears to be partially working.

oh. I am not necessarily claiming that those who created the Student loan Program planned for it to evolve this way. I think they were just stupid.
Ken
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#20384 User is offline   Gilithin 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 14:38

Given the cost and the current circumstances, there has to be a very strong case for giving a set sum to every American adult on lower wages irrespective of their debt situation as a small assistance in coping with rising energy costs and inflation. Something like every household earning less than $60k per year with tapered relief up to $100, or put in whatever numbers float your boat here if those are too high. It seems to me that this would be easier to sell to the public and be considerably more effective than having the cash targeted specifically at students.
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#20385 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 17:19

View Postkenberg, on 2022-August-28, 14:15, said:

That was my point, from the beginning of my discussion of this. The student loan program was an open invitation to take advantage of the gullible and the invitation was eagerly accepted by con artists and the gullible, thus making the rest of us gullible as well. If it takes a quarter or half a trillion to partially temporarily solve some of its problems, it has been a very successful con job on us.

Here are the fundamentals. If we financially support people's educational efforts without expecting repayment, we feel entitled to watch to see that our financial support is well used. If, instead, we lend people money then we are much more inclined to mind our own business. They will be paying it back so why butt in? Ok, so the program was constructed as a loan program to lessen supervision, then, after the deficit became mammoth, the push was to cancel the debt and turn it into a support without repayment program, dodging the supervision that a support without repayment program would receive is it were originally announced as such.

Very clever, and it appears to be partially working.

oh. I am not necessarily claiming that those who created the Student loan Program planned for it to evolve this way. I think they were just stupid.


My experience comes from the for-profit schools. They existed to grift from government largesse. If there is blame, it falls squarely on the free-marketeers who allowed grifters to grift and the gullible to be gulled.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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#20386 User is offline   Gilithin 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 18:45

View PostWinstonm, on 2022-August-28, 17:19, said:

My experience comes from the for-profit schools. They existed to grift from government largesse. If there is blame, it falls squarely on the free-marketeers who allowed grifters to grift and the gullible to be gulled.

Not legislators and regulators for not putting in place rules allowing the prospective students to make a properly informed decision? You should not be able to prominently display in a large font that the "mark"'s money will be used for X and then hide in small print somewhere else that it will in fact be used for Y. It does not really matter whether we are talking about university fees, political donations or just retail advertising - it should all be legislated as criminally misleading and prosecuted accordingly.
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#20387 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 18:54

LZ Granderson writing for the LA Times makes the argument that people in Arizona should be responsible to help people in Kentucky recover from devastating flooding. I agree with him. The people in Kentucky had no choice about being flooded. He then goes on to ask, "But what of the effect of having 45 million borrowers grappling with $1.6 trillion in student loan debt? What of the societal and fiscal cost of those millions of Americans stymied in their futures?" The difference, in my mind, is that those 45 million borrowers had a choice, unlike the people in Kentucky who had no choice about getting flooded. The 45 million chose to take out a loan and "loan" means "loan"; I "lend" you some money, I expect you to pay me back....with interest. I, like Ken, am a great believer in higher education. But what about the guy or gal who went to trade school and learned to be an electrician, carpenter, plumber, hospice nurse, is now earning an honest living but is now expected to pay for those who got a college degree in liberal arts and is now an intern at the White House? And what about those who took out college loans and actually repaid them? The whole scheme reeks of politics (vote-buying) in my opinion. And it sets an awful precedent. What's next? You take out a home mortgage or automobile loan that you can't repay and the government says, "Don't worry about it; you made a bad decision, but we've got your back."? I think it stinks.
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#20388 User is offline   thepossum 

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Posted 2022-August-28, 21:31

It is possible that all attempts at social engineering no matter how well intentioned can lead to possible fascism or something else bad

Maybe a nice simple modelling exercise. Basic model Economy going well -> encourage people to go to school with loans -> great things going well for a while -> economic shock -> people can keep borrowing to replace lack of opportunity -> and so it goes

I forgot other important parts of the loop which Chas touched upon. Price of essential services is rocketing. Why

I have a vague recollection of a quote. Something like - God may be dead but try getting a plumber on a Sunday

Not sure why Trollope also came to mind. From Wikipedia
"Nevertheless a certain class of dishonesty, dishonesty magnificent in its proportions, and climbing into high places, has become at the same time so rampant and so splendid that there seems to be reason for fearing that men and women will be taught to feel that dishonesty, if it can become splendid, will cease to be abominable. If dishonesty can live in a gorgeous palace with pictures on all its walls, and gems in all its cupboards, with marble and ivory in all its corners, and can give Apician dinners, and get into Parliament, and deal in millions, then dishonesty is not disgraceful, and the man dishonest after such a fashion is not a low scoundrel. Instigated, I say, by some such reflections as these, I sat down in my new house to write The Way We Live Now"

Regarding the other weird thing discussed above - our ex-PM's secret ministries I have tried to put an understanding take on it - we were under defence command during the pandemic etc. Who knows why it happened. The last thing you would need under a crisis would be media/public asking difficult questions
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#20389 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 06:47

View PostChas_P, on 2022-August-28, 18:54, said:

LZ Granderson writing for the LA Times makes the argument that people in Arizona should be responsible to help people in Kentucky recover from devastating flooding. I agree with him. The people in Kentucky had no choice about being flooded. He then goes on to ask, "But what of the effect of having 45 million borrowers grappling with $1.6 trillion in student loan debt? What of the societal and fiscal cost of those millions of Americans stymied in their futures?" The difference, in my mind, is that those 45 million borrowers had a choice, unlike the people in Kentucky who had no choice about getting flooded. The 45 million chose to take out a loan and "loan" means "loan"; I "lend" you some money, I expect you to pay me back....with interest. I, like Ken, am a great believer in higher education. But what about the guy or gal who went to trade school and learned to be an electrician, carpenter, plumber, hospice nurse, is now earning an honest living but is now expected to pay for those who got a college degree in liberal arts and is now an intern at the White House? And what about those who took out college loans and actually repaid them? The whole scheme reeks of politics (vote-buying) in my opinion. And it sets an awful precedent. What's next? You take out a home mortgage or automobile loan that you can't repay and the government says, "Don't worry about it; you made a bad decision, but we've got your back."? I think it stinks.


You do understand that a whole bunch of folks who owe college debt went to trade schools right?

And a whole bunch of those trade schools - places like DeVry "University" engaged in outright predatory behavior?
They saddled their students with enormous amounts of debt, less than a third of their students ended with degrees, and those degrees are pretty much worthless.

I readily agree that the higher education system in the US needs enormous reform. And a very big part of this is helping people make better decisions about whether or not to take on large amounts of debt. (I was lucky growing up. I had a strong family with two college educated parents who were able to help me through this process)

I see nothing wrong with providing relief to those in very real need.

Can I nit pick about some elements of the plan?
Sure

Are there ways in which there might have been more selective targeting?
Yeap.

Am I going to get aggrieved because things are a bit rough around the edges?
Nope
Alderaan delenda est
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#20390 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 06:53

View Postthepossum, on 2022-August-28, 21:31, said:

Price of essential services is rocketing. Why



Because we spent decades optimizing out supply chain to make it as efficient as possible.
As a result, it wasn't particularly resilient to supply shocks

Right now, between

1. COVID
2. Climate change
3. The war in Europe

We're seeing a series of massive supply shocks and its driving up prices

There is a very real chance that Germany is going to see electricity prices increasing by an order or magnitude due to a combination of

1. Russian gas pipelines being cut off
2. Massive droughts lowering the water levels in major rivers which is impacting the ability to move coal / natural gas and cool power plants

And, oh yeah, those same droughts are having an enormous impact on Scandinavian hydro power...
Alderaan delenda est
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#20391 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 07:31

Society often gets things screwed up. My favorite example from my youth is that we guys were all supposed to have vast sexual experience and the young women were all supposed to remain virgins. Ok, forget that example, it was just for amusement, back to the topic at hand.

I have made (at least) my share of mistakes during my life and I accept responsibility for them. But that's not the whole story. In 1956 I was 17 and finishing high school. I was lucky. I enjoyed something that I was reasonably good at and that I could make a decent living at. I could afford to go to the University of Minnesota as long as I continued to live at home (I had wanted to move out since I was 14 but I had a stronger wish to go to college so, yep, I lived at home). My high school math teacher got me a scholarship that my Spanish teacher thought I didn't deserve. The U of M had a three or four day orientation session in the summer before classes, and it included a strong pitch by ROTC to join. I thought it over, seriously considered it, and declined. Why on Earth would I consider it? Well, this was 1956 and I expected that even if I got a student deferment I would still be required to put in a couple of years in the Armed Forces after graduation. It seemed normal at the time. Anyway, it all worked out. Lucky me.

Now take some of my sixth-grade friends c. 1950. Gene, Fred, Denny, Dick (also JoAnn and DeeDee but I will concentrate on the guys). I believe I am the only one who went to college. Fred is the only one of them I was still friends with by 1956. He became a plumber, but I fully believe the others went on to successful lives as well. No reason that they shouldn't have done so.


Today, they would be told they should go to college and hey, just borrow some money, no problem. Sure, maybe they should tell such advisers to buzz off, but they are seventeen. In the spring of 1954, I was 15, my high school adviser told me I should take metal shop in my upcoming junior year. This turned out to be good advice, I enjoyed it and got to know some students who were not in my math or my physics class, but it was one class, not a big deal. Telling Fred he should borrow money and go to college would have been a serious disaster if he had taken that advice.

So yes, people are responsible for their own choices but if we set up government-sponsored programs that lead them astray, we should not be surprised to see that some go astray. Yes, I am saying that going off to college is a way of going astray for some, or at least it is a bad choice, just as joining ROTC would have been a bad choice for me. A good choice for some, a bad choice for me.
Ken
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#20392 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 09:24

I've said it before, and many have said it now.

I'm young for this crowd, and when I went to university, I took an expensive program (because Engineers were expected to get good paying jobs). My last year, tuition was CAD350/semester, and the books were similar.

Sure, wages were lower, too, but I think min wage was CAD7.50/hour? Maybe CAD7.00?

Where did the rest of the money for my education come from? Interesting. And we're complaining that the government is now going to "pay for" that education they way they paid for mine, just retroactively? Sounds good to me.

And most of the people here - and I bet absolutely Chas_P - had (the option of, many went to Ivy League or other private institutions) even cheaper university than I did. Subsidised by the government. Just as the current (and former) students are being subsidised now.
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#20393 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 13:11

View Postmycroft, on 2022-August-29, 09:24, said:

I've said it before, and many have said it now.

I'm young for this crowd, and when I went to university, I took an expensive program (because Engineers were expected to get good paying jobs). My last year, tuition was CAD350/semester, and the books were similar.

Sure, wages were lower, too, but I think min wage was CAD7.50/hour? Maybe CAD7.00?

Where did the rest of the money for my education come from? Interesting. And we're complaining that the government is now going to "pay for" that education they way they paid for mine, just retroactively? Sounds good to me.

And most of the people here - and I bet absolutely Chas_P - had (the option of, many went to Ivy League or other private institutions) even cheaper university than I did. Subsidised by the government. Just as the current (and former) students are being subsidised now.


Like you, I have already said a lot of this. I think there is pretty broad agreement that education should be strongly supported. There are good ways, not such good ways, and hopelessly klutzy ways to do this. I think we have opted for hopelessly klutzy. Hopelessly klutzy often leads to bad side effects. I'll leave it at that since yep, I am repeating myself.
Ken
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#20394 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 17:26

Well, just once I doubt Ken is telling the truth:

View Postkenberg, on 2022-August-29, 13:11, said:

I'll leave it at that

(But we wouldn't want it any other way!)
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#20395 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 17:59

View Postmycroft, on 2022-August-29, 09:24, said:


And most of the people here - and I bet absolutely Chas_P - had (the option of, many went to Ivy League or other private institutions) even cheaper university than I did. Subsidised by the government. Just as the current (and former) students are being subsidised now.

It's not really significant, but I went to Georgia Tech; graduated 11 June, 1960. My parents paid the tuition, dorm rent, fraternity dues, books, other supplies, etc. They are both long-since dead, so I don't expect them to ask for a refund. And I'm not unsympathetic to those who had to take out a college loan to go to Georgia Tech; it's a really good school. But I'll say again....in my view a "loan" is a "loan". If you borrow money, regardless of the purpose of the loan, it is still a loan and expected to be repaid.
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#20396 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 18:06

View Postkenberg, on 2022-August-29, 07:31, said:

My favorite example from my youth is that we guys were all supposed to have vast sexual experience and the young women were all supposed to remain virgins.

C'mon prof. Tell us how many gals you tried to talk into sump'n in the back seat of a '57 Chevrolet. We can compare success rates. :lol:
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#20397 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 18:09

Marie Kondo lives rent-free in Chas_P's head.
A mind completely uncluttered by thoughts for others.
non est deus ex machina; även maskiner behöver lite kärlek; les règles sont le jeu même.
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#20398 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 18:27

From Republicans are in disarray by Blake Hounshell:

Quote

“I am not a member of any organized party,” the humorist Will Rogers famously once quipped. “I am a Democrat.”

Today, one might make the same joke about the Grand Old Party. Everywhere you look, Republicans seem to be squabbling with one another over the direction of the midterm elections.

One day, it might be Mitch McConnell, the top Republican in the Senate, complaining about the “quality” of his party’s candidates while his deputies point fingers at Senator Rick Scott of Florida, who runs the G.O.P.’s Senate campaign arm.

Another day, it might be Donald Trump calling for McConnell’s ouster and giving McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, bizarre nicknames like “Coco.”

On days that end in “y,” you might find Republicans on television complaining about Trump’s hold over the party, distancing themselves from his document-handling protocols and urging him to drop his obsession with the 2020 election, which establishment Republicans believe is unhelpful to their electoral chances at best and catastrophic to them at worst.

My colleague Luke Broadwater captured a litany of Republican complaints on the Sunday political shows, centering on He Whose Name Starts With T.

He noted: “Some are signaling concern that the referendum they anticipated on Mr. Biden — and the high inflation and gas prices that have bedeviled his administration — is being complicated by all-encompassing attention on the legal exposure of a different president: his predecessor, Donald J. Trump.”

What’s going on? It’s not so much that the underlying fundamentals of the midterm cycle have changed, although they have moved in Democrats’ favor somewhat. And it’s not so much that President Biden has suddenly grown popular, although his approval rating in public polls has ticked up a few notches in recent months. Nor is it that forecasters have begun downgrading Republicans’ chances of retaking the House — after all, The Cook Political Report still expects a G.O.P. majority next year.

Rather, what happened is what you might call a vibe shift among what the original insider tipsheet, The Note by ABC, used to call the “Gang of 500” — the motley collection of columnists, journalists and other political opinion-makers who haunt the green rooms in Washington and New York and collectively make up the “conventional wisdom.”

“We’ve gone from ‘Republicans will win every single election in the universe’ to ‘Republicans will not win a single election,’” said Corry Bliss, a Republican strategist. “The pundits’ narrative has shifted overnight.”

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#20399 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2022-August-29, 18:49

View Postpilowsky, on 2022-August-29, 18:09, said:

Marie Kondo lives rent-free in Chas_P's head.
A mind completely uncluttered by thoughts for others.

Thank you for your insight Obi-Wan Pilowsky.
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#20400 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2022-August-31, 17:35

Blake Hounshell at NYT said:

When Howard Rosenthal died last week, he left behind an important body of work that will live on well after he is forgotten.

Rosenthal, a political scientist with distinguished tenures at Carnegie Mellon University, Princeton University and New York University, was hardly a household name.

But as my colleague Sam Roberts pointed out in his obituary, Rosenthal was responsible for pioneering, data-driven scholarship on the growing polarization on Capitol Hill, and he provided key insights on what was driving those yawning partisan divisions.

https://messaging-cu...f0-67b6e9aacc20

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