Freshman New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Monday told the sympathetic story of a high school student who was admitted to an elite institution but was unable to attend due to the $250,000 price tag. The problem, Ocasio-Cortez complained, wasn’t that the cost of the college was prohibitively high but that the student was not offered any large discount in the form of scholarships.
“She got into her dream college, but her dream college offered her no scholarships, just loans,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a press conference on Capitol Hill supporting a bill to have taxpayers pay off U.S. college graduates’ $1.6 billion in outstanding student loans.
In other words, the high school student was offered a luxury education at a luxury price, no discount. That’s wrong, according to Ocasio-Cortez’s philosophy on personal debt. Other Americans should pay for her to have luxuries. Yet this attitude on debt would be a fantasyland for anyone to live in regarding other items one might “dream” about.
Always dreamed about living in a Manhattan high-rise or a Malibu mansion? Why don’t the property managers hand out a discount? After all, it’s your dream home, and you can’t imagine living anywhere else.
One month ago, Ocasio-Cortez said housing should be “legislated as a human right” anyway. That’s probably next after forcing U.S. taxpayers, who are already on the hook for $210 trillion in unfunded liabilities for the elderly, to also pay off student loans.
A 15-year-old girl went viral after appearing on Dr. Phil arguing to her mother and the television psychologist that she needed an extravagant Land Rover for her 16th birthday. The price tag? $231,000, but she “needed” the car.
“I need my G-Wagon. There’s no question. I need it,” the girl demanded. “My mom is buying a Bentley for herself, why can’t I get a G-Wagon?” The young girl’s mother discussed earlier in the episode how she might need to take the bus to work in order to finance her daughter’s high-priced dream car.
The young girl’s life would be so much easier if the dealership would sell the car for half the price instead of requiring enormous loans because it’s her dream vehicle.
My dad, who is currently fishing in Canada with a long-time friend, has always dreamed of buying a new boat. His dream boat, the newest model from prominent fishing boat manufacturer Lund, comes in at a price of more than $17,000.
“Lunds are the Cadillacs of fishing boats,” my dad would always say. Unfortunately, the seller never offered a big enough discount, just loans. We always had a great time with his current fishing boat anyway. But if you apply AOC’s logic to boats, taxpayers should just get us one.
Everyone has a bucket list, but sadly, not everyone has the opportunity to check each box on it. Some dream of touring Europe, others wish to go skydiving. Don’t have the money to go? No problem. With AOC’s attitude on debt, buy it with a credit card and tell the bank you’re only paying part of it back. Taxpayers will get the rest.
Other Extracurricular Luxury Items
Americans aren’t very good with credit cards. According to Experian, a consumer credit reporting company, Americans’ average credit card balances rose from $6,354 in 2017 to $6,506 in 2018. Credit card companies don’t generally offer debt forgiveness, however, just interest rates. Perhaps under Ocasio-Cortez’s philosophy these companies would provide partial debt forgiveness for iPads and smart watches. Courtesy of taxpayers, of course.
Yes, a college education might be helpful for getting a white-collar job. But the average cost of attending a four-year public college for state residents is $9,716, according to U.S. News and World Report, far from the $250,000 total Ocasio-Cortez mentioned. Anyone could work this off and graduate debt-free, especially since research has shown that college is getting easier and only on average occupies the equivalent of a part-time job.
It is also likely that a student admitted into an elite university would receive handsome scholarship offers from other great but lesser-known schools around the country.
An earlier version of this article incorrectly listed outstanding U.S. student loans as in the billions. It is in the trillions.