So, the new healthcare reconciliation part of the health care bill includes a *gasp of surprise* large increase in the amount of money made available for students loans. "We're going to make college more affordable," says one congressman.
More money for student loans does NOT make college more affordable. It allows colleges to raise their tuition and fees. More money is available for loans, so colleges can also charge more. Supply and demand. Nothing about this will make college more affordable.
Tuition fees for 2009 and 2010 are rising 14% each year, way out of line for the cost of living. Why? Because more student loan money is available.
Do not think it's a cheap loan. I know veterinarians and other professionals whose education requires 8 years of college who have a student loan payment equal to their mortgage. And both will be paid off in 30 years. This is for folks who graduated several years ago. It's much worse for those who are in college now or considering college soon.
How do we fight this?
If college isn't free, or if you can't pay for it while you're attending, then DON'T GO! If colleges can't get the students they will lower their fees. And be sure to tell them you're turning down their offer of admission because it's just too expensive.
Shelling out 2/3rd of your income to rent and student loan payments means that you'll work, that you'll pay someone else to take care of your family if you decide you can have kids at all, that your job will be providing more tax money to this current legislative climate in which the winds are blowing to spend before there is money to pay for it, and certain disaster for you, the economy, and the country.
Don't do it.