Here Comes The Student Loan Bailout

Tyler Durden's picture

2012 is the year the student loan bubble finally popped. While on one hand the relentlessly rising total Federal student debt crossed $956 billion as of September 30, and was growing at a pace that will have put it over $1 trillion by the end of 2012, the one data point confirming the size, severity and ultimately bursting of this latest debt bubble was the disclosure in late November by the Fed that the percentage of 90+ day delinquent loans soared from under 9% to 11% in one quarter.

Which is why we were not surprised to learn that the Federal government has now delivered yet another bailout program: this time focusing not on banks, or homeowners who bought McMansions and decided to not pay their mortgage, but on those millions of Americans, aged 18 to 80, that are drowning in student debt - debt, incidentally, which has been used to pay for drugs, motorcycles, games, tattoos, not to mention countless iProducts. Which also means that since there is no free lunch, all that will happen is that even more Federal Debt will be tacked on to replace discharged student debt loans, up to the total $1 trillion which will promptly soar far higher as more Americans take advantage of this latest government handout. But when the US will already have $22 trillion in debt this time in four years, who really is counting? After all, "it is only fair" that the taxpayer funded "free for all" bonanza must go on.

The latest debt bailout, not surprisingly is not titled "Yet another taxpayer funded bailout for those who bought things they can't afford on credit" as that would not be very politically prudent, especially for those politicians who still have taxpaying citizens as their voters. Instead, its name is the much more PC: "Pay as You Earn Repayment Plan." Alas, it really should be called the former, because what it does is it incentivizes Americans to borrow even more Federal student loans, well aware that there will now always be a cap on the associated monthly interest payment which will never leave a mark regardless what the full underlying loan notional is. It also provides for full debt discharge should the borrowers end up with cushy Federal jobs - because the one thing the US government needs afford is more debt-saddled government workers.

What is the "Pay as You Earn Repayment Plan"? The WSJ explains:

A new federal program should make it easier for some recent college graduates to keep their student-loan payments manageable.

The new option, known as the "Pay as You Earn Repayment Plan," lets eligible borrowers sharply lower their monthly loan payments and qualify for loan forgiveness quicker than they might otherwise.

"It's a very good safety net for students who borrow too much," says Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of the financial-aid site "If your debt exceeds your annual income, you will probably benefit."


Pay as You Earn, which took effect on Dec. 21, "is designed to help offset the effects of the recession for student borrowers most likely to take a hit in this tough job market," says Lauren Asher, president of the Institute for College Access and Success, which has pushed for the creation of income-based repayment plans.

Which in the New Normal, means everyone with a student loan will benefit. It also means, that courtesy of knowing this safety net is there, more and more people will take advantage of the government's latest generosity with other taxpayer's money.

What are the terms of this new bailout?

The new program comes at a time when rising student-loan balances—amid a still shaky job market—have weighed heavily on many families.


Typically, federal student loans must be repaid within 10 years. At current interest rates, that can work out to a monthly payment of roughly $300 for a borrower with $26,000 in debt.


Pay as You Earn, by contrast, limits student-loan payments to 10% of "discretionary income" as defined by government formulas. Borrowers who make regular payments could have the remaining unpaid amounts forgiven after 20 years.

So much for student debt being non-dischargeable: borrow hundreds of thousands, but make your monthly payment of a hundred or so bucks, and in 20 years you will be debt free, courtesy of US taxpayers. Actually, scratch that: one doesn't even have to make a payment!

In some cases, borrowers with low incomes could be required to make a zero-dollar payment and would still be considered current on their loan. Monthly payments can increase or decrease each year based on the borrower's income and family size.

For those who think getting full debt forgiveness in 20 years is far too long, why there's a loophole for that too: just go "work" for Uncle Sam:

Borrowers with public-service jobs may qualify for loan forgiveness after just 10 years.

As for eligibility "constraints":

To be eligible for the program, borrowers must have taken out their first federal student loan after Sept. 30, 2007, and received at least one federal student loan after Sept. 30, 2011. Borrowers also must meet eligibility cutoffs based on the size of their debt, their discretionary income and family size.


The U.S. Department of Education's Pay As You Earn calculator, available at, can help you determine if you qualify. Borrowers can apply for the program online or by contacting the loan servicer that collects their payments on behalf of the federal government.

In other words, virtually all people who were responsible for the diagonal take off in the Federal student loan total in the current depression are now eligible for what will eventually be full debt discharge.

So let's get this straight:

  1. go to some "everyone who applies is admitted" community college
  2. take on the biggest Federal loan one can get
  3. use the proceeds for everything besides the tuition (of course)
  4. be unable to find a job after graduation (naturally)
  5. plead poverty, accusing evil employers who don't hire those who majored in Foosball, and make "zero" payments while remaining in "compliance"
  6. get a job working for the government, wait ten years, and have the entire loan magically disappear.

And there it is: incentives for the common, and very much broke, man in the New Normal.

If there is anyone out there who thinks this will not result in a "charge it" feeding frenzy and that the Federal student loan total will not go absolutely parabolic going forward, please raise your hand.

Of course, what is not discussed, is who is on the other side of all those forgiven loans. And the answer, dear taxpaying US readers, is starting at you in the mirror. Because all the Federal government will do is transfer the unfunded obligation, which has already been used to satisfy the purchase of goods and services, from one individual to the whole group.

But when one is dealing with the government of a country that is no longer even fit to be defined as "banana", what is adding one more trillion between already insolvent counterparties.

Finally, yes, this means the Fed just tacked on one more year of QE to its $1 trillion/year in US debt monetization, which also means the Fed's balance sheet will now also be used for to fund student loan forgiveness, among so many other things.

Insolvent students of the world, unite!

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Herbman's picture

This author failed to consider the following:

1. Tax-payers have no money

2. Student loans were created from dust and to dust it must return

3. Without these loans, how can the kids afford the I-things

Anyway, i just used my refund check to buy more gold

newengland's picture

Enticing children into colleges and lumbering them with debt is a useful way to keep down unemployment figures, profit banks and slave master politicians who want to keep their jobs by keeping everyone else beholden to them.

Offering loans to students is a useful way to enslave them, and their parents.

Cynical powerbrokers take tax money, bribe politicians, and serve foreign interests...not the Constitution.

My father went to school in a horse cart to a one room school house in Maine, and then he became one of the world's most influential engineers, changing medicine for good.  He was not lumbered with debt, and nor were his family.

Debt is slavery. Genuine community is all.

Genuine community will return. It never went away. The slave masters fear for their fate, and that is why they want to usurp the Constitution, disarm the people, and make tax slaves of all...with the help of their lazy pets in the colleges, professors of communism.

Those people grift off taxes and send their own children to private schools with armed guards, surround themselves with armed body guards...and employ teachers to tell children that Big Brother loves them.

See Sandy Hook as an example that Big Brother state hates you, and uses any of its failures as an excuse to disarm you.

The alleged shooter was drugged up, and his mother worked for the CIA. Gun crime has risen with the use of drugs, legal and illegal.

Children are the most at risk when adults succumb to Big Brother state lies.

Edit: and teachers in the school said they saw two shadows outside the school running away. The police arrested two other men. Eye witnesses saw this. No mention of this since then in the politically controlled main scream media.

The mother of the alleged shooter worked for the CIA, and Adam Lanza was on psychotropic drugs. Drugs legal and illegal are the problem that causes mass shootings, but main scream media prefers the excuses of politicians and banks who make most money from drug running lobbyists. 

bobbydelgreco's picture

loan fogiveness is the future you don't like it tuff

newengland's picture

Loan forgiveness happened for the major banks with the help of tax dodging politicians.

You've been had, duped, cheated. You like that, apparently. You voted for it.

The biggest welfare recipients are the biggest banks and their political pals in Washington DC.

Paid with taxpayer money, and the unemployed as a result.

They exploit you, Mr Gullible.

Arthur's picture

Such *ssholes.

What I would not mind seeing is the Fed give all outstanding Federal student loans a reduced rate say 3%.  Why not since banks are borrowing at about 0%.

If I can refi my mortgage to 3.25% why can't the Fed effectively do the same for student loans.

Lowering the interest rate to reflect current market conditions makes some sense.  Forgiving loans is b.s.


newengland's picture

1913: the privately owned Federal Reserve Board took over the publically owned U.S. Treasury, and its usurious ways rule ever since.

President Wilson later wrote his lament that he allowed that to happen. It has been a one party state ever since then. Politics is showbiz for ugly people, and it's no surprise that main scream media and Hollywood finance has dominated public attention ever since.

All main scream media is owned by a handful of AshkeNAZI, and their Federal Reserve Board, debt slave masters.

You voted for them, just as Germans voted for the Nazis, and later regretted it.

Radical Marijuana's picture

Yes, newengland, I think the following idiomatic saying is relevant:

A fish rots from the head down.

When an organization or state fails, it is the leadership that is the root cause.

This article generated tons of comments, many missing the most important point, which you made, newengland.

AFTER silver was demonetized, and AFTER the privatized Federal Reserve Board was created, and AFTER that fiat money no longer had anything to do with any limitation by being related to gold, THEN the runaway fraud of privatized legalized counterfeiting was enabled to go into nearly perfect exponential growth of debts.

While it may take two to tango, one leads and the other follows. The banksters were able to lead the country, through relentless and ruthless application of the methods of organized crime, to destroy the meaning of "money" and gradually transform "money" to mean the opposite of what it always did before.

Since there are NO practical ways for anybody, and certainly not young people, to do anything meaningful to change the political system that they were born into, which is a runaway fascist plutocracy juggernaut, where those who could make money out of nothing always found more and more excuses to make more out of nothing, which then enabled that fiat money to be gambled with, over and over again, in crazier and crazier ways!

OF COURSE, there was relentless, ruthless and reckless privatization of profits, along with socialization of losses. The REAL meaning of these developments is the PRIVATIZATION OF SOVEREIGN POWERS TO ROB AND TO KILL. The whole country is a raving mad house, wherein Fraud is King!

OF COURSE, the latest manifestation of this social insanity is this list:

  1. go to some "everyone who applies is admitted" community college
  2. take on the biggest Federal loan one can get
  3. use the proceeds for everything besides the tuition (of course)
  4. be unable to find a job after graduation (naturally)
  5. plead poverty, accusing evil employers who don't hire those who majored in Foosball, and make "zero" payments while remaining in "compliance"
  6. get a job working for the government, wait ten years, and have the entire loan magically disappear.

As far as I can tell, there is NOTHING left to do but laugh at evil. Our predicament is terminal social sickness. Our society is almost 100% controlled by Huge Lies, backed by Violence. That is automatically getting worse, faster. The source was the histories of militarism and then the monetary system. The result is that every aspect of our culture is crazy, but backed by coercion.

It is practically impossible that enough people will actually become sufficiently educated about any of that. Most of the posts on Zero Hedge merely confirm how hopeless that overall runaway social insanity situation is. EVERYONE, for generations, has adapted to living inside of a system based on fundamentally fraudulent financial accounting systems, which were based on deliberately ignoring the laws of nature, as manifested in our real environmental ecology, because EVERYONE was forced to live inside of the well-established systems of financial fraud.

The ways to become "successful" were to yet again embrace those frauds, and yet again indulge, to whatever degree one could, in using more of that money made out of nothing, since the ONLY way that one can do anything inside of the established systems is by using "money" that was originally made out of nothing, as debts. In that system, IF there were no debts, there would be no money. Therefore, the ONLY ways to do anything, DEMAND that one participates in the overwhelming social madness, which had already become totally dominant, for a long, long, long time!

At this point in time, it is impossible to imagine how this runaway social insanity could be corrected. I continue to believe that ONLY eventual psychotic breakdowns, as genocidal wars, along with democidal martial law, are possible, because, everything I have learned, indicates that it is IMPOSSIBLE for most people to understand anything about the realities regarding what is going on, since they do not WANT to understand.

What has happened is that fraud, backed by force, TOTALLY CONTROLS EVERYTHING WE DO. There was a long history to how that got going, but now, it is a runaway reality.  I believe, in theory, it is possible to understand what happened, whereby the power to rob, and the power to kill, gradually transformed into the legalized lies, backed by legalized violence, that controls us today. However, that runaway insanity of being totally dominated by triumphant FRAUDS BACKED BY FORCE is so overwhelmingly well-established, throughout everything we are doing, as done by everybody, that it would require a prodigious series of political miracles for there to be any more realistic understanding of the FACTS that the debt controls are backed by the death controls, and the money system is based on the murder system.

Instead, the runaway social insanities of more and more "money" made out of nothing, as debts, is building up a pressure of deferred death and murder on an astronomically sized scale. The runaway triumph of fraud, backed by force, has itself as its own worst enemy! We are watching as our civilization becomes increasingly psychotic, in the sense of detached from more objective realities, since lies backed by violence ARE controlling the ways that we think and the ways that we behave.

It is tragically too bad, and so sad, that Zero Hedge is mostly a fringe phenomenon, and most of the comments are fringe of the fringe, while my comments are fringe of the fringe of the fringe, and therefore, all of this appears quite useless to bother to read or to write.

What WILL happen is $trillions and $trillions more "money" made out of nothing, as debts, flung around in crazier ways, as that civilization drives itself mad, until it destroys itself through becoming too totally mad.

EVERYBODY has to live somehow, my making "money" and spending it, inside of a monetary system which is the triumph of organized crime, privatizing the power to rob and to murder, through the entrenched systems of legalized lies, backed by legalized violence.

Nobody can live outside of that system! Everyone has been press ganged into that insane madhouse, that is our current civilization. There are apparently NO ways to engage in any more rational public debates about any of these problems. There is no doubt that the usurers usurped the powers of governments. However, NOW that those trillionaire mass murders are ACTUALLY in control of civilization, we are doomed to have to ride that madness through to its self-destruction.


However, as far as I can tell, more than 99% of the people do not understand THAT, and do not want to understand THAT, and therefore, reading and writing things like the articles that appear on Zero Hedge serves no practical purpose other than to tickle one's macabre sense of humour, as we laugh ourselves to death.  The out of control debts WILL end in out of control deaths. THEY ARE OUT OF CONTROL ALREADY! There are no reasonable and realistic political ways to do anything to prevent that, nor be prepared for that.  Our society is stark raving mad, and increasingly self-destructive ... BUT, that has already gotten so bad, that there is no doubt it is going to destroy us, and thus, pathetic laughing at the absurdity of such madness appears to me to be about the only thing left ... I WISH I could think of something else more effective to do, but I can not!

newengland's picture

Good of you to spell it all out, 'radical'. You must stay strong, and know what is true. No surrender. This  world is not for whining. It is for doing. To thine own self be true, and let the venal types ruin each other.

honestann's picture

Another great message, but I shall nitpick.  You said...

#1: is IMPOSSIBLE for most people to understand anything about the realities regarding what is going on, since they do not WANT to understand.

... and ...

#2:  Nobody can live outside of that system!


#1:  I am afraid that I come to the same conclusion.  While the problems you mention are plenty simple enough for normal humans to understand, virtually every human on this planet has been programmed to avoid making first-hand observations, ignore everything not fully consistent with soundbites issued by the predators-that-be and predator-class, and above all, not question authority to any non-trivial degree.  As your formulation states (written backwards) humans can understand what is happening... if they want to.

#2:  Yes you can.  I don't want to criticize you personally, because you are a great resource.  However, you can live outside that system, and you know that.  To be sure, until we manage to leave planet earth, some of their actions influence us in minor ways (for example, particulates drifting long distances from chem-trails).  But for practical purposes, humans can still (for many years to a few decades at the very least), exit the system you describe.

And my point is... well, the same as yours.  The situation is so astronomically serious at this point in history, claims that "leaving the comfort of this system is too difficult or inconvenient" are not rational.  At some point situations get so bad that simple rationality requires honest, sane humans who "get it" to leave the system if there is any way out.  And there is.  Take advantage of it.

You clearly understand the futility of the situation.  It took me a long time to realize humanity (and the west and USSA in particular) are unquestionably far beyond the point of no return.  While we both clearly understand that a mere few percent of people who "get it" could topple the predators-that-be and predator-class, we also understand that something like 75% to 95% of the sheeple will actively support and defend the predators-that-be and predator-class... which is why we are indeed beyond the point of no return, and only harm our good (and very rare and precious) selves by trying to fight the predators-that-be and predator-class.

This leaves only one practical resource.  The vanishingly small number of humans who are honest, ethical, productive and clear-headed enough to understand what is going on are precious... very, very precious.  If there is to be a "restart" after a full collapse of mankind, these people will be precious, crucial resources to explain and help implement a return to sanity... in the unlikely event that is possible.

Please take a few hours or days to consider what I am about to tell you, even though you have known what I will tell you for many years or decades.  But now consider the significance of these facts.  Okay?

Think about the small, extremely remote villages in the high andes mountains, or in mongolia, or in remote portions of africa and elsewhere on this planet.  Consider the history of the people in the high andes, since I know some of them personally, and can speak with a bit more authority, having had days of conversations with them off-and-on over weeks and months.

Those people apparantly originally walked to the americas across frozen ice from northern siberia region 30,000 to 150,000 years ago (depending on who you believe).  Over generations they made their way to the high andes in the driest desert on planet earth (portions of which have not received rain for at least 10,000 years).  They've been living a happy and healthy existence for 100,000 years (plus or minus).  In the more remote villages (really, micro-villages, since they tend to be 12 to 50 people), they have never seen a peso or penny or any formal "money".  They are aware there is a technology-world "out there", but somehow also know they'd be crazy to leave their mountains, desert, caves and incredibly obscure, deep natural "springs" (underwater streams and lakes).  Indeed, many of them loved being my guest and flying around the area in my tiny 2-seat aircraft, and I loved their infectious joy and excitement at their new experiences.

I do not suggest you abandon everything and move into their village.  In fact, I grimmace at the thought of outsiders even visiting these people, much less move into their village (which is not really a village at all, but just a very spread out series of huts, cavelets, and various geological niches that make good places to live in the general area).  I am... inherently and automatically careful not to emphasize or praise my ways, or the technology I have.  And I most certainly do not glamorize the "outside world" they have never seen, beyond saying "the world at large is in the process of going completely crazy, and being dominated by very nasty predator human beings, and I hope you manage to be far enough away, and sufficiently out of sight to avoid being impacted by that".  The only real advice I gave is "do not trade or make agreements with outsiders, beyond extremely trivial trinkets", because, of course, that is how westerners "buy entire nations" or merely "manhattan"... for nothing.

But that's a totally separate issue.  I don't expect you or other precious human resources to join their village, or live with them, or emulate them exactly 30km or 50km away (where there are endless gloriously beautiful places to do so).  What I do expect you to take seriously is this.  You are not stuck in the insane system you recognize.  These people I described are the epitemy of not being part of that insane system.  Nobody messes with them.  They've never even been visited by a government representative.  There appears to be an unspoken understanding that "they've lived here 100,000 years, everyone else is a newcomer (in the past 500 years), and claiming they must be part of our system is... inappropriate".  After all, these people have nothing to steal or tax, so the local predators have little to gain... so far.  Of course, I warned them to "never accept free education, roads, water-wells, or any other infrastructure or gifts".  I explained that whenever these predators give you a "free gift", they also assume "you are now their citizens, which means slaves", no matter how much they protest to the contrary.

My point is, look at the conditions humans have lived and prospered in for hundreds of thousands of years!  And they are happy.  Very happy.  And frankly, if I was not such an extreme techie, I could be happy living their life too.  I'd probably have to toughen up a bit, but that would come naturally.

Given the conditions in which other humans have survived, prospered, and lived happily in... how can modern humans, with all the technological aids they have at their disposal, claim "I can't live anywhere but a western city or town"?  My claim is, you and the many others like you, are being wimps so above and beyond the point of absurdity that... well... you really should reconsider.  I'm serious.  Very serious.

What's the point of having been honest and alert all these years... if you (and the few others like you) refuse to do anything about it?  That's a serious question!

Before you (and others like you) say, "Ah shuks, I can't do that!  I have family, I have responsibility, I have an aunt with hip problems, I have kids in school...", and whatever other bogus excuses you tell yourself, wake up and get real.  You know what's going on, and you know where this is headed.  If you don't get at least some of the people you love outta dodge, they will all get slaughtered... or worse (prison, FEMA camps, hopelessness, and/or extreme poverty... and other very nasty consequences).

This is serious.

Yes, this is not "normal".  You don't have a whole lot of equivalent examples in history to access.  But at least you do have plenty of examples of people leaving other parts of the world and escaping to better places.

You cannot fix the problem.  Period.  At least, not until after the total collapse.  The predators-that-be and predator-class have gotten themselves into complete control of essentially everything.  The next big step will be gun confiscation.  Do you want to be around during the shooting wars... when every house everywhere will be repeatedly broken into in the middle of the night and torn to shreds in their predatory search for every last physical item that might be construed as "weapon capable"?

Cannot even the smartest of you look at other examples in history and see when you really need to get the hell outta dodge?

And incidentally, getting out of dodge has other benefits, though more difficult to measure your personal contributions.  In the current situation, the entirety of the predator actions are financed by the actions of producers.  The actions of producers are what feed their thugs, what manufacture their guns and ammo, what refines fuel to power their squad cars, tanks, drones and jets... and keep their buildings comfortable or viable.

So when you remove yourself from dodge, you not only save your own life (and possibly lives of one, two, or a few others you judge worthy), but you take the most effective action possible (at this time, in these circumstances) to thwart the predators.

The predators are winning because they take actions!
The producers are losing because they only talk.

The producers have already waited far too long to take direct, effective actions against the predators.  You already talked and talked and talked at such extreme length that you "gave up earth" to the predators.  That is just one of the predator schemes, and it worked perfectly --- convince producers to talk but not act.

So now we are all getting near their "end game".  While we don't know what every last tiny detail of that "end game" looks like (and neither do they), you damn well know enough to know you need to get the hell outta dodge... or simply let the predators destroy you and all the other precious producers who "get it".

Afterwards, when you look back and realize what you have done by not acting, how will you judge yourselves?

The actions I'm talking about are not that difficult.  Compared to "defeating the predators" at this point, they are trivial.  Not trivial in the absolute sense for most people, but trivial in comparison to any alternative (and those alternatives no longer have a snowball's chance in hell to succeed at this point in history).

You need not take such an "extreme" action as I did, but it can serve as an example near the far end of the spectrum (not counting even more extrme steps we work on now from our hidden, secure digs).  I've mentioned them before here, but I'll repeat the short version.  What I want you to focus on is the modest level of time, effort, funds and resources required to implement this "extreme case".  Later I'll remind you again that you need not go "this extreme", that there are much cheaper places and ways to achieve an escape, and most importantly, you can collaborate with others to expand your time, efforts, funds, expertise and resources to achieve something even better perhaps, or at least.

I moved to the extreme boonies in another country (which shall forever remain nameless in public).  In my case "extreme boonies" means 20 people or less within 120km in any direction.  I had about $350K in physical gold savings... my entire lifetime of being extremely frugal and a very hard worker in high-tech.  I never took a loan, never bought a TV or stereo or even boombox or cell-phone or other gizmo (though I spent a lot of money over the years on electronic, computer and other scientific and technical equipment that I needed to efficiently develop the products and devices that kept me alive and saving).

With those resources I was able to build a very pleasant, very comfortable digs in the extreme boonies.  These digs include my residence (~100 m^2), my workshop (~100 m^2), pseudo-greenhouses (~200 m^2), several extremely well hidden food and equipment stashes (~50 m^2), a cliff/cavelet/overhang where I can roll my airplane completely out of view from overhead and virtually everyone on the ground (^200 m^2), solar-panels currently producing more than 3x the power I need, wind-turbine currently producing less than 2x the power I need, battery-banks that can hold enough power for 5 days without sunlight or wind, DC-to-AC converter (and 2 backups), my own unlimited source of water (far more than enough to water all my plants, flush my toilets, wash my dishes, shower every day, etc).

It is barely possible to notice parts of my digs from above.  In theory, the solar panels are the most visible (dark and rectangular).  I fitted them with "quick-deploy" covers that perfectly camoflauge them in case I ever feel prying eyes from above might become an issue.  Someday I intend to hook a few webcams to one of my computers, detect overflights, and automatically deploy and undeploy those colvers.  I placed the rectangular solar-panels on larger smooth, irregular-shape surfaces that I made dark and as close to matching the color and surface qualities as the solar-panels).  My own flights over and around my location indicate the illusion (of non-rectangularity) is almost always effective, though at a few angles the illusion is not entirely convincing to my alert, attentive eyes.  They generally look exactly like small shadows or dark puddles of water.  In practice, nobody but me flies anywhere near here, not counting a rare flight at 30,000+ feet, where they cannot see me.  Also, most photography is purposely taken "straight-down" where images are clearer and coordinate warping is minimized, more regular, and easier to remove with software.

There used to be no way to get ground vehicles to this location.  During building I had "steel planks" installed across a deep crack or micro-canyon (for lack of a better term) but lucky-for-me only 15 meters across at one very fortunately located narrow gap.  After all materials were moved to my location, I had the steel planks pulled to my side and hidden in a tiny cave.  Since then, the only way in or out has been airplane.  Of course other tiny aircraft could land near my digs... assuming they had some reason to, and assuming they can land and take-off again in less than 100~120 meters (depending on spacing of wheels and precision of pilot).

Now I live a comfortable life.  Frankly, for a lover of peace, quiet and boonies like me, it is near paradise... a very high-tech paradise I might add.  My point is, the total cost was $350K.  Add another $125K ~ $150K (depending on options) for a tiny but brand new, high-tech, long-range, 2-seat airplane.

In other words, $350K to $500K for a full blown "luxury solution".  While I live here alone, and have no visitors except those who also work on the long term project I contribute to, my place is plenty large for at least 5 people (who get along).  I hosted a 14-day "workshop" of sorts with 8 of my fellow collaborators not long after I finished the place (with the understanding that I'll never totally finish jazzing up this place), and everyone managed to find a place to sleep, be comfortable, and have sufficient privacy.  Of course, when you live in a place with endless geological nooks and crannies all over the place, and no other humans for ~100km, peace, quiet, privacy and solitude is not difficult to find.  Plus, the weather is pretty much always great here, which helps.

So what is my point?

My point is this.  What is $350K (or $500K) these days?  True, not easy to save that much, but possible, especially for those ready to "liquidate everything" (as I did, almost).  If you can't manage that, how "impossible" is it for 5 people to chuck $75,000 into the pot, and achieve this result?

I mean, really!  $75,000?  Yes, that's a lot of money, to me too --- especially now!  But come on folks!  How many of you have a car that cost roughly half of that?  I never did, but an awful lot of people do.  And we're talking about a practical way to:

- save your life
- live a happy life
- starve the predators

I'm not quite sure why I am the only human being (that I know of), who has been willing to "walk the walk" as well as "talk the talk".  I guess maybe because I have pretty much always turned my [most compelling] thougths into actions, and this was no different.

Frankly, I have pretty much reached the point that I can no longer "talk the talk" any more, because all evidence indicates that my talk is helping nobody, and my talk is motivating nobody.  So what's the point?  My collaborators and I have A LOT of work to complete to implement our final solution (to totally, completely and permanently get outta dodge --- in two crucial but very different ways).

I wanted to lend a few insights and tips to those very few, very precious of you who "mostly get it", or "do get it".  If humans are to have a second chance at all, it all depends on you.  I'm serious about that (see above for why).  We won't be able to help you, because we won't be here (on earth), and eventually we won't even be human (in the technical sense of the term).  But don't start thinking mysticism... we are the most hardcore-realist scientists and engineers you will never find.

The fate of mankind depends entirely on you folks, those few of you who seriously "get it".  If you will not take actions when viable actions are possible, how can you even imagine in your wildest dreams that the predators-that-be and predator-class will not completely destroy you and everything good?  Don't be delusional.  Wishful thinking never works, not even for predators.  That's why they act.  So act, damn it!

I wish those of you who "get it" the best of luck.  But please, don't count on luck.

tip e. canoe's picture

thanks for the sunday sermon, ann...most inspiring.

Jam Akin's picture

I very much appreciate your taking the time and effort to write as you do here Ann.  Your points about starving the predators resonate.  And your ability to take action is inspiring.  BTW I already secured my reservation at Camp FEMA some years ago.  

What to do?  What to do?  I first walked into Communist Showplace East Berlin through Checkpoint Charlie in the early 1980s.  What a Potemkin Village show.  It seems to me that we are a ways away from that kind of extreme still.  

Is there a window of opportunity to get out of dodge now?  Sure.  But what good will that do for my friends and family when the time comes to choose which path this country takes out of the valley of evil that we are driving into now?  There will need to be some folks on hand to try to move it in the right direction.  I tried taking action in the past and it was premature.  You are correct that it may be illegal to keep the proverbial dry powder on hand sometime very soon.  But for me running away is not the right answer.

Please continue to share your thoughts - they are of great value.


honestann's picture

Please, don't take offense if I don't come visit your room at camp FEMA!

I guess my response to you is this.  You can return when the time is right.  You can return when the house of cards has collapsed on the predators and parasites along with everyone else.  But if the folks who understand stay and get trashed, who do you expect will rebuild?  The endless sheeple who only know the soundbites and propaganda they absorbed from the predators-that-be?

I doubt that will work.  That's why I believe it is very important that people who "get it" get outta dodge and set up a viable life for themselves.

I'm sorry if some of you feel abandoned, but I don't think I can stick around much longer.  It is bad enough that I spend so much time writing these messages (even typing at warp 9.75) when I have very important work to do.  But I'm afraid I really have come to the conclusion that essentially nobody will take actions.  It seems the entirety of mankind either watches TV all day long, or talks the talk... but nobody walks the walk.  I understand where this leads, and it is better for me psychologically not to observe endless talk when I know nothing will happen.

I'm making things happen, and will continue to make things happen to the extent I can.  That's not going to help anyone outside the tiny group I collaborate with, but at least I can keep a positive psychology, because we take actions, move forward, and have a fair chance to achieve a good future.  I can't let myself go down with the ship, even if just psychologically.  Sorry to those who get bored without my babble.  Lots of people talk the talk.  You'll find others to entertain you.

Jam Akin's picture

None taken - I'm sure I'll have a good roommate there.  Fare well then Fair Ann.  "Every man gotta a right to decide his own destiny.  And in this judgement there is no partiality."  Bob Marley

Cosimo de Medici's picture

Interesting post and lifestyle choice, and I intend to try a Pipistrel, but a little nitpick from here, too.

You "grimace" at the thought of outsiders visiting your moutain people, but YOU visited them.  Do you feel you have a special right that others lack?  You state that you are "inherently and automatically careful not to emphasize or praise my ways, or the technology I have.  And I most certainly do not glamorize the "outside world".  But, in fact, you do.  You gave them "infectious joy and experiences" by ferrying them in your Pipistrel.  You are undoubtedly smart enough to know how such an "experience" can champion a world or lifestyle completely new and unfamiliar to them, even if that was not your intention.  Such innocent "sharing" is actually a ploy used by missionaries to win the hearts and minds---or "souls"---of potential converts to whatever superstition the missionaries are convinced is The One Truth.

I am not unfamiliar with indigenous people.  I have brought an expertise I happen to have into areas where indigenous people have migrated and found themselves at odds with their new surroundings.  Perhaps I pollute their societies and cause other outsiders to grimace at my visit, but when I help treat easily curable maladies that have "traditionally" killed them, the indigenous people don't seem to mind.  Mothers and Dads seem to want their kids to live, and will accept someone's help if it might do the trick.  I don't preach, because I have no faith, except in the medical expertise I have learned and practiced---and offer if their own methods are not working, but I realize I cannot help but have some influence over those I meet.  Funny thing, they also have an influence over me, so I think the meeting is, well, very human and equitable.  Indeed, if I thought their exposure to me would change them, then I guess I would be rather arrogant, carrying an assumption that my ways or culture somehow is more powerful or influential than theirs.  I am not arrogant to that extent, so I just see it as communication between members of the same species.  They are not some zoo animals who can only be viewed from outside the cage, or only by a self-selected few who think only they are without sin.  They are people, like me, albeit who experienced a different accident of birth.

I once had an NGO worker, a Japanese woman who was coincident in the same area, berate me for curing some small children of septicemia, because "it is natural for them to die from it, so you shouldn't interfer".  The folks in the village didn't see it that way, so we all got together and sacrificed the Japanese woman to the old gods in a glorious ceremony.  (Well, that last part was a slight exaggeration;  they just told the woman she was no longer welcome.)

One more slight nitpick is the disparaging of "Westerners" or the "West".  Having travelled to dozens of lands encompassing a variety of cultures and nearly all systems of thought (and faiths), I do not see the West as being worse in any relative sense.  Plenty of nastiness to go around, or to use your preferred term "Predators".  Some might not be as technologically advanced, but if and when they become so, they'll give the worst of the West a run for its fiat.  Ironically, perhaps, some of these up-and-coming Predators used to be in the predominant position, and they behaved even more nasty than the current crop of top riders.

honestann's picture

No, I have no special rights.  And I don't worry about honest, thoughtful, respectful, benevolent people visiting those folks.  However, as I'm sure you know, if there were a constant flow of people through their villages, most of them would bring their personal baggage with them, and start telling them how to live.  Or worse, they'd try to scam them in some way, or bring outside attention to them, which will only end badly as it always does.  They really don't need to be scammed or taken advantage of.  I'd hate for that to happen.

I understand what you mean.  I can't be 100% certain my contact had no negative effects.  I do know that nobody ended up wanting to abandon their lives, or try to mix their lives with western influences.  But yes, thinking back, maybe even I wasn't careful enough.

You raise an interesting question.  If one of them got sick and I could easily cure them (for example, with some antibiotics that I keep handy), would I?  Yes, I would.  Look, you raise good questions here, and my assumption is, there are no perfect answers.  Let someone probably die, or risk getting them interested in "western medicine", which perhaps makes them think of "selling products to get money to buy western medicine", which makes them "travel to towns", which leads to... who knows what?

All that is true and possible.  I almost feel like our discussion is a StarTrek episode and we're discussing how to apply the prime directive!

What I do know is this.  They are vastly better off than everyone reading this message on ZH, and I don't want that to change.  To be sure, some aspects of their lives are less comfortable and perhaps physically more dangerous.  Maybe some do die when antibiotics or other interventions might save them.  I do know, they are extremely healthy people, obviously live to extremely old age on average, and live in an extremely "clean" environment.  In fact, they live in the same general desert where they NASA tested their Mars landers lifeform detection equipment, and that equipment could find no life, not even microbial.  The only visible life in some of those villages is the villagers and what they grow and raise to eat.

Nonetheless, that's just an accident.  What I do feel confident about is this.  They are better off without any external influences, or perhaps I should say without any external formal influences.  I am certain they are happier and healthier the way they are than being slaves of some government, or being "helped" by official do-gooders (especially so-called "education").

I don't know what to say as a bottom line, except this.  I don't have any "special right" to visit those people.  But my whole message was in the context of helping people understand how beneficial it is to live outside the predator-controlled world, and that applies to these people as much or more than everyone else.  They've achieved the life I suggest (to whatever degree people can pull it off).  I don't want to see them get corrupted, I want to see good people get uncorrupted, and get away from corruption.

BTW, you didn't experience all my conversations, so you'll have to take my word about this.  They understood that I clearly thought they were much more impressive than me.  And I do.  Given the totality of my conversation, and the fact they knew I was exploring the extreme boonies to get away from the "outside world" because it was getting so horrible, and everything else in our conversations, none of them will be moving to town to beg, buy or borrow some fancy modern gizmos... and certainly not an airplane.

Furthermore, BTW, it isn't like they've never seen an airplane!  While there isn't much air traffic over the Andes, there is some, and clearly the typical airplanes they see are a whole lot large and more impressive than my tiny little 650 pound 2-seater!

They are aware of the outside world.  While it is very rare for anyone to pass by or though most of these villages, especially the one I was talking about, they are generally aware of the outside world.  They know about cars, cities, airplanes and such.  Not sure exactly how, or how up-to-date is their knowledge, but they were certainly generally aware.  They were not like jungle peoples 50 years ago who had never seen a single hint of a "modern world".  Fortunately!

I totally agree with you about missionaries, and that's one of the kinds of things that I worry about.  Once when I asked how often outsiders happen across their village they told me about a visit a few years back from what probably was a missionary, though I can't be certain from their description.  But those countries are about 95% catholic and 99% christian, so I'd be surprised if they don't get a visit now and then (though the places I visited were really, really, really "out there" (far away from uncivilization)).

Anyway, it was clear they thought the visitor was nuts, and they felt sorry for they considered a poor crazy nutball (my terms of course).  Fortunately these folks seem pretty-much religion-free.  They are, however, curious about where their ancestors originally came from, which they believe came to the americas over 100,000 years ago (best I can understand).  They already had a vague notion of "south america", "north america", "the old huge continent (asia to europe I presume)", and "some islands" (presumably in the pacific).

I'm glad you were able to cure some of the people you visited.  I hope none of them felt the need to relocate themselves and become "modern westerners" (or "modern easterners") in order to access the goodies.  Though actually, I don't worry so much about a youngster vanishing to "the lure of the city" once every few years.  I worry much more that they come back and bring intellectual BS with them.

And yes, they had a lot of influence on me too!  No, correction, not "influence" but "impact".  They impressed the hell outta me, with their ability to live entirely without any western technology or any trade at all (in what is supposedly one of the harshest environments on planet earth).  And they did, since I didn't see anything that seemed to come from elsewhere, except for some old rough "timber", which I imagine they dragged there from 20~100 kilometers away (from the slopes of one of the few volcanos that has any trees).  Or something... not sure.  But they clearly understood how impressed I was with them and their lifestyle and their achievements, so I doubt I influenced anyone to leave their great life for anything I happened to have with me (which would be the airplane, video camera, notebook computer, my clothes, sleeping bag, tent, water, food... that's pretty much all).

And boy did I not want to change them!  After hearing your concerns about the airplane trips, I did worry for awhile, and I still worry a little bit.  But after more thought, I'm pretty sure they considered my visits and those flights as a "special treat", but definitely something "alien" in the sense of "outside their lives".  Again, they knew I was interested in more-or-less emulating their lives, not the other way around!  I was no missionary for anything... except maybe their own lifestyle!

But I disagree with you about one thing, it seems.  They really are "special people", and they really are not "just like you and me".  What I mean is, they are not mentally polluted by the endless bogus concepts crafted by predators doing business as missionaries or governments or corporations or otherwise.  They really are special.  To understand how special, read some of my recent posts.  I have been trying to show people how the mind of man has been utterly destroyed... trained by the predators to be incapable of distinguishing real from fiction.  Well, these people are already cured.  You might complain and say they are unsophisticated, but I'll turn that around and state this for the record.  They may lack understanding of some valid abstractions, but that is much less important than the lack of being filled by endless bogus abstractions and sound-bites.  I'm trying to get "modern humans" to be able to "get real"... and I have been totally failing!  While these "unmodern humans" don't need to "get real", because they "are real".

I hope you understand.

I am pretty careful what I say about the problems of the outside world.  I don't even say things like "the west" to them, partly because it would mean nothing, but also because I believe all modern humans are approximately equally clueless about "fiction versus reality".  So, while I am careful to say things like "not everyone is the same", I did tend to talk about "them" versus "the outside world" (including Chile, Argentina, Peru... the countries the predators-that-be claim they are "in").

You know, I've heard a lot of negative stereotypes over my lifetime about "ancient peoples" or "unsophisticated peoples" or "jungle peoples" and so forth.  I did not have any previous experience with "remote peoples" (might be a better term), so I can't comment on the negative descriptions.  Very likely there are incredibly superstitious peoples, incredibly nasty and warlike peoples, and perhaps all the rest of the stereotypes to some degree.  I'm not in a position to know from first-hand knowledge.

But these folks sure  weren't mystical or nasty or warlike at all.  They paid very little attention to me the first three times I wandered through their village (on long-distance biking explorations in remote parts of the high andes).  Each time I [tried to] talk for a short while with one or two people, and they were friendly enough but mostly just went on with their business with little more attention to me than each other.  The third time I was lucky to run into one of them that [somehow] knew basic english.  That was a great break for me.  After a few hours of conversation with her, she took me "home" and sent someone to bring four others to her home, where we all had dinner.

And no, I didn't feed them twinkies to repay their kindness!  I did give them some seeds to grow some food items that I didn't see in their gardens.  That's more-or-less how things work there, I later found... people do small favors for each other without necessarily (or obviously) expecting anything in return.  No "fake" gifts... they wait until they find or think up something that is easy for them but very convenient for you.  Very practical, very efficient.  I like that.

I wasn't there to sell them my view of "the predators".  My emphasis was on me looking to relocate to the extreme boonies and become self-sufficient, because the "outside world" was getting increasingly bad.  If I was a missionary, my mission was finding a way to live as much like them as I could.  I didn't explain that I intended to have solar-panels, wind-turbine, battery-banks... or an airplane!  They were totally shocked when it was me who exited the airplane.  That's why they cheered, because I was a [semi]-familiar face by then.

I'm glad to hear your concerns.  They are good ones.  And frankly, I don't even think there are answers to some of your concerns --- or mine.  They've already seen airplanes and a 4WD every 2 or 3 years (an estimate).  They know enough about the "outside world" to already be in danger.  Interestingly, of the villages I visited, it seemed that two of them had some minor problems with youth moving away due to some lure of uncivilization.  The common message there was, they either never came back, or they could never "be happy" or "re-integrate effectively" (my attempt to give the gist) after they returned.

My favorite village (described in these messages), and the others I visited briefly didn't seem to have anyone "move to the city" as far as the people I talked with could recall.  But you also need to understand, my ability to communicate was always... ehhhh... rough and imprecise, except for my one friend I made who could sorta speak enough english so communications was more efficient (even so, I always had my english-spanish dictionairies with me to get us past difficult concepts).  Also understand that these people spoke sorta-spanish as a second language (I think).  It always seemed to me like they had their own primary language, which they sorta informally mixed with bits and pieces of spanish that found its way into their common speech, though even my english speaking friend didn't really know which was which, or even if there were two separate language influences.

These people have the right viewpoint and attitude.  Modern humans do not.  This is one reason why me and my techie associates want to move into space.  We want to be free and independent, not part of some umpteen-billion chimp chaos pit.  These people are free and independent to the core of their bones.  That's why I love them.

Miffed Microbiologist's picture

Ann, I truly admire you for living your life as you do. You truly are putting into reality what many here just speak about in ethereal wishful terms. However you do seem to see it in a very black or white way. Not everyone even with the finances, physical health,youth or technical ability can do what you have done. In many ways I would have been cut out for this in my 20 or 30 s. my husband would jump at the chance being an only child he loves solitude peace and quiet and since software development can be done anywhere today, this life would be perfect for him. However for me I enjoy the few close friends I have and the life we have created on our small 10 acre gentlemans farm near San Diego. Most of the people I associate with are in various stages of awake. They do not fully comprehend the financial issues discussed here but are well aware the deep corruption of our government. The way I see it is I do serve a purpose remaining here and not going full Galt. I can support others who have in many ways helped me wake up and become more self sufficient. I can be a beacon to anyone I come across who is looking for answers but doesn't know where to look. Believe me it's uncanny once you're awake how often just random interactions with people will result in the most incredible conversations. This NEVER happened when I was deep in the matrix. Perhaps what I'm saying is I believe there must be a reason for me to stay at this time in my life. Not being particularly religious but it feels to me to be almost devinely inspired. Making this choice obviously has consequences and those may not be pleasant. As you point out, it may result in my death and the death of those I love dearly. This is why I prep for a possible deadly violent end. Sure if the might of the government comes I will be run over quickly. However if a few looting thugs come by I can pick them off easily for quite some time especially with my neighbors at my back. Every day I try to become more self sufficient but, no I am not where you are by any means. I think the difference is is you feel your way is the only way to be truly free. Here is where I disagree. In many ways I submit to you I'm just as free as you living on your beautiful mountain with your indigenous people. Reality is if the SHTF and we were all wiped out, you with your skill set would be far more useful to rebuilding society than I could ever begin. My biggest goal this year is to take some herbology classes from a master herbalist in the area. He covers local medicinal herbs, how to extract and prepare for treatment. With my science background I'm hoping to learn quickly but it normally takes 2 years of training to become proficient. So I'm praying I have the 2 years to learn because I don't see how my profession will serve me if things truly go bad. Just a few more baby steps...

It saddens me Ann you find no reason to stay here. I find many here very enlightened and I still get a lot from their interactions. You must follow your heart however, I can understand that. Thanks for your posts, they have always meant a lot to me. Take care always!


Element's picture



Freedom-clarity-sanity is inside, it is not outside.

The outside's expression we see as the world is the expression of all the insides expressed.

If you don't get the inside straight the outside will reflect it.

No one can do that for any one else, that is 100% their job.

Virtually all people don't do it, they're always looking outside instead.

Trying to change the outside by instructing the inside is how missionaries got started.

Instruction about the inside is false.

It's worse than false, the individual can only learn from themselves, which can not be instructed from outside - EVER.

If you can't be free and clear where you are, then you aren't going to be free or clear elsewhere.

Where you are is not the factor.

Where the real you is is inside and no matter where you end-up, that will always be what is there.


lakecity55's picture

Yes, a cunning plan.

But it would disrupt Cloward-Piven, Comrade!

No, the system Must be overwhelmed!

Forward, SOviet!


lakecity55's picture

There are "Studnet Loan Forgiveness" ads in the margins and 2 pictures of ophone adz. I think we are being stalked.

newengland's picture

Meh. It's the lowly verson of algos gone mad. Leave them to their insanity, and debt slave ruin.

adr's picture

There have been many straws piling on my back, I must have a back of titanium because it hasn't broken yet. This may have just done it.

Fuck that muslim fucking clown illegally sitting in the big chair.

The fucking dictator is trying to do his best Khadafi impression. I can't wait for the day he meets the same fate.

There is no honesty left. There is no chance to live a good life. Only fraud and servitude are paths forward today.


To the slaughter sheep.

newengland's picture


Fear not. The rats will turn on each other with lethal vengeance. Stand aside, and pity them. It is their problem, not ours. Let them get on with it.

The good life only ever existed among the genuine Republic anyway. I am sorry for their troubles, but this is their troubles.

If my daughter became a waitress and my son became a carpenter, I would be happy enough, so long as they lived at home in a genuine community.

'A cynic knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.' (Oscar Wilde, playwrite).

Ineverslice's picture


crossing my fingers, re: rats...


adr-  the despair is hard to counter, especially this past year...I'm having a tough time of it.  Truth and honor don't get u much these dayz.  Best to you brother.  

newengland's picture

And best to you too, 'ever'. Stay strong.

jomama's picture

so much anger directed at the puppet!

diversion tactic executed beatifully.

10mm's picture

Protect yourself,love ones and make preps.Everything else is meaningless shit day in and day out.It's getting old.Sytems is dead.Actually system is demonic and disgusting.Peace.

mercenaryomics's picture

Well even Tyler is not immune from the student loan pepetuation machine. 

Cabreado's picture

That would be a perfectly valid point.

Remember, only one fight at a time...
We're at the movies, ya know.

Cabreado's picture

When the young-and-their-mom-and-dad finally catch on, and refuse to play the game of "higher education," how will they learn about Rome?

KingTut's picture

Take a look out your window.  You learn more about the Roman Empire by studying the US Empire than any other way. Pax Americana baby.

BTW: LOVE the Carrington COllege ad that pops up on this page.  Google needs to work on their ad targeting.

Fix It Again Timmy's picture

Instead of dealing with this shit, channel it... Ever meet a broke or unemployed plumber...

Son of Loki's picture
Talks on Illinois pension crisis end without deal


Illinois' pension deficit has been growing by $17 million per day, threatening to eat up more and more money for education and other public services. It's also costing taxpayers millions more because of the state's low credit rating.

Bear's picture

Everyone and their mothers now want federal jobs because they pay roughly 2x as much as similar private sector jobs ... and with a forgiveness of debt, we will get the best and brightest ... best (rip-off artists) and the brightest (shyster and cons). The private sector is pretty good about weeding out the scum, but the government ... no so much. We are doomed.

newengland's picture

Agree with you, except the part ' we are doomed'. They are doomed when the money stops, and it will.

Make sure you are prepared. They took the fake jobs and money and joined the one party.

epwpixieq-1's picture

The so called student lender as well as the borrowers who borrow for a worthless diploma to go and fack themselves.

And after that, just to do a simple reality check, they have to find out what has been the % of the US universities in the TOP 15 world universities in IBM ACM competition for the last 20 or so years.

Just a hint it is 1-2 ( usually not in the first 7 ) out of 15 ( with some years 0 ) for the last 20 years, since the competition was open to the universities from all over the world and mostly Eastern Europe and Aisa.

And guess what, the ones that occupy predominantly the top 15 places have 1/20 to 1/40 of the tuition of the "TOP" US universities. What they do not have is a overpriced inflated educational system that tries to substitute the inefficient high school education with an equivalently inefficient and insanely overpriced university one.

Basia's picture

The long term plan or unintended consequences seem to be to induce more people to take on more debt. Then the rug will be pulled at some point when US officials say we can no longer afford loan forgiveness for students? By then even more students will be indebted to the government.  Sounds like a long term plan for slavery. Government jobs right now may seem benign, but may eventually be just the opposite. 

Another issue:

To be eligible for the program, borrowers must have taken out their first federal student loan after Sept. 30, 2007, and received at least one federal student loan after Sept. 30, 2011

The dates of eligibility seem rather arbitrary.  I wonder what the rationale is behind these dates.

newengland's picture

It's a debt trap, a government induced slave trade, for the benefit of the powerbrokers in politics, banks and their courtiers in places like law, finance, accountancy.

It keeps unemployment numbers lower, and masks the failure of the bureaucrats in government including the 'teachers' and 'professors' who enjoy their pay, perks and long holidays without stress as everyone else pays for them.

newengland's picture

It's a debt trap, a government induced slave trade, for the benefit of the powerbrokers in politics, banks and their courtiers in places like law, finance, accountancy.

It keeps unemployment numbers lower, and masks the failure of the bureaucrats in government including the 'teachers' and 'professors' who enjoy their pay, perks and long holidays without stress as everyone else pays for them.

Slave trade is the accurate name. It is children and parents working for nothing. No jobs for the kids, and destitution for the parents who believed the promise of so called 'higher education', the lie.

newengland's picture

Dear 'radical marijuana'.

Trust me. My family have been here for hundreds of years. Government is venal, as always.

We will not leave, nor forsake your hopes. Trust in this. May your God go with you. Stay strong.

mendigo's picture

Its a very difficult situation. I am at a loss as to how to deal with the problem of education in the us. My son does very well in school and is starting to think about colledge but I have to warn him that it may not be worth the cost. The alternative would have been sign up with the military but with all the cavelier use of our armed forces I fear that route is physically and ethically dangerous. I fear that our armed forces will be used against us in the near future as was already evident in the militaristic response to the sandy storm. Very grim.

Poetic injustice's picture

Reread this and similar threads, they offered good ideas on cutting down costs on education, like taking Public school and other stuff. It does still cost a leg, but at least you save some. Or if he can apply for some grants.

BlueCheeseBandit's picture

Get your son in a skilled trade: plumbing, welding, farming, etc.

He can always go to school later if it starts to make sense again. When the education bubble collapses and tuition prices are right-sized, maybe.

mendigo's picture

Yes that is my thought also the trades generally look good and there is potentially law enforcement. Additionally if I change careers and work for the state (NJ) he gets a free ride I believe. I am talking to him about maybe school in S. America.

strayaway's picture

You should probably take farming off the list as most of the money made in farming has to do with rich land owners cultivating tax loop holes designed for corporations or real estate gains after a farmer dies. 

Skilled trades are good though although subject to competition from 'immigrants' working for much less. My father was a carpenter superintendent coming up through the ranks with five years of total schooling. He noted that a carpenter could make a good living with $500 (at the time) of tools and his skills whereas businessmen needed huge amounts of money for a store or business to make as much as money as a good carpenter. Also, a tradesman can move and easily transfer his skills and toolbox.

I would suggest taking a business curriculum in addition to learning a skill. That would give a plumber, electician, or whatever entre into the office of the business or related businesses and an edge in understanding the nuts and bolts of the business. Bodies wear out and get injured. Recessions are depressions for construction people. An understanding of business would be career insurance and enhancement. 


MyBrothersKeeper's picture

As an alternative, start his/her own business.  Start small like landscaping or something.

If you don't have a business idea you can arrange your own education.  You can get all the knowledge you could want just on internet/public liabraries and then use internships/volunteer etc to supplement.  For example, if a kid is interested in history, have him/her pick out a portion of history and throughouly study/research it.  If it's the American books, talk to experts etc.  Then go visit the battlefields in Gettysburg, Yorktown etc.  Work part time to pay for these trips...go to with vets. Then ask to volunteer/intern.  Most would not require that you are enrolled in a degree program.  You will be better prepared than 99% of those who get a history degree and you will have 10x the amount of contacts and references needed to gain employment.  Heck you might do this for a year and a half...find your passion and be offered a job. You will find out where your passion is and are much more apt to identify your strengths than you would sitting in a classroom. As a bonus you will have zero debt.

You can get into the real estate business and many other businesses with no degree at all by passing the state/fed exam as long as you can find an org to sponsor you.

If you must have a degree you could get an associates degree or if a 4-yr is required find a program that will allow you to blow through it as quick as possblie.  Live at home and finish in 3 yrs. One of best things HS students can do is take those courses that will get you college credits.

The problem in America is we believe we are subject to the "station to station" process.  This isn't true as there are alternative routes.  Yes you may lose out on the college experience but in the long run you will be much better off. Education should be about finding a career not a job.  Job, as someone told me several years ago, means Just Over Broke.

BeansBulletsBandaids's picture

I (like many of the posters here it seems) graduated college with a minimum of debt, something like $5k. That was over 10 yrs ago. In 2008, I decided to go back and get my MS because I thought it would enhance my career path. I also wanted the challenge...
While I am proud of myself and feel a strong sense of accomplishment from receiving my masters - I can't say it has been worth it, ie, I'm a big dummy... I was not aware of what was going on in the world and since '08 the job market has gone to crap, the value of my home has gone down, I have about $16k in student debt, and make only slightly more money.
Although it sucks, I made a commitment to pay off my loans and I will. I don't qualify for this program due to the timing of my loans, but even if I did - I'm not sure I'd take advantage of it. I'd rather be a dirt poor debt slave for 10 years than a slightly less poor slave for 20....

honestann's picture

The only "flaw" with the program (from Obama's point of view, not mine), is that government jobs pay twice the regular market wage.  Therefore, they'll have a difficult time staying under the maximum earnings to qualify for the "no monthly payment required" provision.  At least how I read the above.

Nonetheless, this will have two major effects... a huge spike in college loans (because they know they'll get debt forgiveness one way or other), and an increase in people who say "I'm past my burden limit... I'm done being a producer".  Those who don't mind being lazy (and now feel entitled on the basis of producer-abuse), will live the lazy life, probably pop out kids like they're going out of style to generate additional income from welfare, foodstamps, unemployment, etc.  And the better of them will move out of the USSA to find productive work.

This is all designed to get as many people "on the government side" when they decided to put all overworked, rights-abused complainers in FEMA camps.  The message is, "don't dare to complain or resist, because 70% of your fellow sheeple are on our side".

I moved out of the USSA over 3 years ago, and I am completely happy.  I can only imagine this option is looking better and better to honest, ethical, productive individuals all the time.

ebworthen's picture

I just knew there was another way to make money in this economy...

Svendblaaskaeg's picture

"And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins
When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins"

The Gods of the Copybook Headings
Rudyard Kipling - 1919