America’s greatest resource, what made us a nation among nations, was always We the People. If we are going to maintain our competitive advantage and lead the world into the 21st century, we can only do so by unleashing the innovation and energy of the emerging generation.
- Immediately forgive all student loans, if we can reward billionaire bankers who crashed our economy in 2008, we can afford to give a jubilee to graduates
- Take profits out of higher education by only giving federal money to institutions that are non-profit and are not affiliated with publicly traded corporations
- Redirect the trillions of dollars we waste enriching special interests and the military-industrial complex and invest those savings into students by covering 100% of tuition
- Implementing PayCan where Americans pay taxes as they are able and busting outsized mega-corporations will incentivize more entrepreneurs to launch small businesses
The runaway cost of education, the diminishing returns of ungraduated and graduate degrees and vanishing opportunities that have become the new normal are not just issues that concern the younger generation. After all, parents also feel the heat when college costs as much as some homes and we also feel the pain when we see our children unable to make ends meet.
For too long, we have been conditioned to accept education not as a pathway towards self-empowerment but as a means of furthering the interests of multinational corporations and their billionaire owners. In the process, we sat back and watched as humans were being turned into resources for industry and for workers to be viewed as assets as long as we are needed and liabilities to be discarded once we are replaced.
This type of corporate ideology has subjugated humanity and widened the wealth gap into a chasm, for the sake of future generations, we must break this mindset by investing in our children instead of indenturing them with debt. Our continued viability as a nation depends on empowering future generations; doing nothing as students are saddled with onerous debt only for them to graduate and work at Starbucks is criminal negligence.
Consider this, the total amount of outstanding student loans is roughly $1.6 trillion, this seems like a lot of money but considering that Wall Street and the multinational banking swindlers who bled the global economy received north of $3.0 trillion when Federal schemes like TARP, CARS and QE are included, it’s a drop in the bucket. Moreover, the $1.6 trillion that is forgiven by the government will be injected right back into the economy because consumers will end up spending it. Whereas billionaires stash their money overseas, the multiplier effect of forgiving student loans will greatly benefit America.
Forgiving student loans is but the first step, we must go further by unshackling and unleashing the ingenuity and energy of the younger generation. We must also make it a priority to listen and empower the Joshua generation. Their innovative approach to tackling issues that have festered for decades and their dedication to justice could turn the corner on the “us versus them” thinking that has paralyzed our politics and instead lead us towards a more inclusive and equitable future.
This much is clear, we can no longer lavish riches on multinational corporations and their billionaire owners as poverty and adversities are being trickled down to the rest of us. This pyramid scheme that is robbing many to pay a few is deeply immoral and affects the vast majority of Americans but it especially impacts the younger generation. Millennials and Generation Z will, for the first time in our country’s history, fare worse than their parents did.
The American dream is turning into the American hustle as graduates face skyrocketing rent and runaway inflation that is eating into their earning power. This inability to realize their potential and fulfill their dreams is why depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses are reaching crisis levels among the younger generation. It is incumbent for us as Americans to address these issues that matter to students because these same issues matter to all of us.
We can no longer afford to let Democrats and Republicans gaslight us as we are being torched by inflation, for the sake of future generations, we must act to preserve the American dream. This requires a reorientation of our economy to benefit Main Street instead of catering to the whims of Wall Street. Consolidation and the restriction of marketplaces on all fronts is creating a society of separate and unequal where the neo-aristocracy feast while the rest of us are beset by famine.
Below is an interview I had with Anuja Badeti, the President of the Student Senate at New Jersey Institute of Technology. Listening to her passion and her desire to effect positive change, which is felt by millions of younger Americans, is the reason I am making their issues and interests a central part of my campaign platform.