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Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Student Loans


Student Loans

Does my blog disclaimer say no political posts?  I don’t think this counts as political. Besides, my post, my rules.


There is a lot of talk these days of granting college loan forgiveness.  To me this is very interesting. 

I agree it is sad that so many of our young people are saddled early in life with a debt burden that is difficult to carry and also live the “American Dream.” 

Owning a home, having children and all those things that young people expect are delayed because of this burden, and quite frankly many of these things are difficult to obtain later in life.

Cancelling this debt would be removing a financial ball and chain from our many young college graduates.

Can the country afford this?  It is probably not good timing in lieu of the current inflationary environment, but long term I would say yes.  The removed financial burden might even allow young people to make decision that might ultimately prove to be an economic boom resulting in increased tax revenue…maybe.

There are other arguments against student loan forgiveness.  

Is it fair to people who have worked hard to pay off their obligation to see others have the debt just wiped away?  I know it would piss me off, but then life is never always fair.

My question is, “If student loan debt is washed away, is that the end of student loans?”

I mean it is one thing to give one group a large break, but why would future college borrowers expect to pay-off their loans?  Who would make such loans?

It would be great for many people if home mortgages were suddenly forgiven, but what bank would ever provide mortgage loans again.

The ability to borrow money is a good thing.  And providing young people the means to further their education is a good thing for everyone. 

What is the answer? 

Sadly, I don’t believe college loan forgiveness would bode well for future potential college students.

One problem is the high college tuition expense.  Clearly in many cases college simply is too expensive.  The ease of borrowing money for tuition is, ironically enough, probably one reason for high tuition costs.

I think government could offer schools incentives and or some disincentives to curb the high cost of a college education.

“What might those incentives or disincentives be Cranky?”

“Do I look like a politician? There must be some smart people who could figure it out.”

In the meantime, I do have one suggestion to reduce the burden of college loans. 

Make the cost of college tuition and the interest on college loans a 100% tax reduction over a period of…hmmm…let’s say 20 years.

If your tuition costs $100,000 then for the next 20 years a students Federal Income tax liability would be reduced by $5,000 each year.  Interest on college loans would also be a 100% tax liability reduction.

This tax break would make the college loan burden more palatable, while not destroying the college loan market.

Would this solution still be unfair to those people who worked and suffered to pay off their college loans?

Yes! Suck it up buttercup, you still have your education, and down the road it just may help pay for your own children’s education.

Problem solved!        

Monday, April 11, 2022

What the Hell Happened While I was Away?


What the Hell Happened While I was Away?


As things are easing up virus wise, Mrs. C and I attended a concert for the first time in years.  It was a Doo-Wop concert featuring groups like the Duprees (Have You Heard), The Brooklyn Bridge (The Worst that Could Happen) and The Tokens (The Lion Sleeps Tonight).  Needless to say it was not a young crowd.

The theater was filled with wispy DA haircuts and bulging waists. There were walkers and a few wheel chairs.  There was not any annoying high arm waving, isle dancing and “We love you” screaming.

It was an old crowd.

The world has changed somewhat since the pandemic and not in a good way for old people.

The night started out with parking confusion.

We used to park in the garage across from the theater.  Easy peasy.

Pull up to the attendant, grab your ticket and pay on the way out…five maybe ten dollars, I don’t remember.

These days, not so easy.  Drive right in, park you car and then try and figure out how to pay.  Easy for young people, old people not so much.  We were surrounded by a confused generation of Doo-Wop fans trying to pay for parking.

It seems these days you have to point you phone camera at a square blob of squiggly ink and wait for a web site to appear.  Then you fill in a series of questions ending with your credit card number to find you are being charged $20 for 7 hours of parking.  Even this was not as simple as it could have been as the parking garage offered horrendous internet reception.

Thanks to Mrs. C we were able to figure out how to pay and she also walked several other confused seniors through the process.

Before we could enter the theater we had to prove we were vaccinated. 

Fortunately we had our proof of vaccination on our phone and that was accepted…not that I think they really looked at it.

Also masks were optional.  I wondered if they needed to tell us that.  Like would it be possible to NOT allow mask wearing? 

Now we are in the theater and of course before the show starts all us old people needed to pee.  Even that has now changed.

The restrooms are all non-gender.  I guess that is fine for young people, but old people balk at peeing next to the other sex.  The room was entered with great trepidation.

It turned out that these restrooms only had stalls, and a lot of them, so it was weird, but not too awful.  Not for number one anyway, pretty sure number two would be an issue for most of us geezers.

Most women seemed to like the idea of for once seeing men have to wait in a long line.

Parking done, entering accomplished and peeing over, it was time to settle into our seats.

Wait!  Don’t we get a program?

Yup, except the program required using your phone and pointing the camera at another squiggly ink square and downloading it on your phone.  Apparently if you do not have a smart phone, you can not park, enter a theater or get a program.  At least you do not need a phone to pee…yet.

Anyway the show was fun.  The falsetto lead singers are not what they used to be, and the dance steps have lost a step.  Still the groups are  entertaining and everyone seemed to enjoy the show.

The entertainment made you feel young again…everything else, not so much.

At 2:00 am we were woken up by an phone text beep.

“What is that, you girlfriend texting you?”

“Ha Ha! No, it is the parking garage letting us know our time has expired.”

What the Hell happened while I was away?