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The Debt Trap: How Student Loans Became a…
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The Debt Trap: How Student Loans Became a National Catastrophe (edição: 2021)

de Josh Mitchell (Autor)

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"In 1982, a new executive at Sallie Mae took home the company's financial documents to review. "You've got to be shitting me," he later told the company's CEO. "This place is a gold mine." Over the next four decades, the student loan industry that Sallie Mae and Congress created blew up into a crisis that would submerge a generation of Americans into $1.5 trillion in student debt. In The Debt Trap, Wall Street Journal reporter Josh Mitchell tells the untold story of the scandals, scams, predatory actors, and government malpractice that have created the behemoth that one of its original architects called a "monster." The tale begins in 1957 with the launch of Sputnik. Afraid that America was falling behind the Soviets in science education, Congress created the first major federal student loan program to enroll more students in college. What followed were a series of well-intentioned government actions that created a cycle of reckless lending and runaway tuition. Easy access to loans allowed colleges to raise tuition to unheard of levels, which in turn led Congress to increase loan limits and interest rates and expand who could borrow. This spiral continued as the private banks that fronted the money made huge profits on interest. "Nobody was pure in this business," one former college president said. As he charts the gripping seventy-year history of student debt in America, Mitchell never loses sight of the countless student victims ensnared by an exploitive system that depends on their debt. Mitchell also draws alarming parallels to the housing crisis in the late 2000s, showing the catastrophic consequences student debt has had on families and the nation's future. Mitchell's character-driven narrative is required reading for anyone wanting to understand the central economic issue of our day.… (mais)
Membro:BookAnonJeff
Título:The Debt Trap: How Student Loans Became a National Catastrophe
Autores:Josh Mitchell (Autor)
Informação:Simon & Schuster (2021), 272 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
Avaliação:*****
Etiquetas:Nenhum(a)

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The Debt Trap: How Student Loans Became a National Catastrophe de Josh Mitchell

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The first thought out of my head when I finished this book was is there anything good left about America?. Since last year i've been reading materials about different economic/social players in the US. Whether it be in the tech industry, pharma, and now education; there seems to be this rot that eventually invites itself (or is invited by the players themselves) and starts truly harming people while @ the same time a group of people are getting filthy rich. Like human misery becomes this beast the corporate and political world has to constantly feed so it can sh*t the gold they desperately need to live. ( )
  NG_YbL | Jul 12, 2023 |
Before You Talk About The Student Loan Problem, Read This Book. Here, Mitchell does a phenomenal job of going from the very beginning - before World War I even - and showing just how the student loan problem grew from a well-intentioned idea into the massive debt bomb that we are now struggling with at all levels. Other than one short, couple of pages - if that - section near the end, Mitchell keeps all personal ideas and politics out of the narrative, instead focusing on as objective a reporting of the events as they unfolded as I've ever seen. Indeed, there are only two things that I can think to ding him on at all here, and neither one quite warrants a star reduction:

1) Throughout the narrative, particularly once his timeline gets into the 1990s and 2000s eras, Mitchell doesn't account for the rise of State-sponsored lottery-funded scholarship programs. Though upon a bit of research, it seems that these only exist primarily in the Southeast: Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia. Though I've lived in three of those States and had my college funded by Georgia's HOPE Scholarship - it is at least plausible that anyone living outside of those States, or without close friends or family in them, has never heard of these programs. (And yet even with HOPE, I still managed to amass a $20K student debt load that had ballooned to nearly $40K before I began actively repaying it - upon threat of legal action - largely due to exactly the forces Mitchell describes in this text, but mostly because I was an idiotic 18yo and it was "free money". Though I'm proud to note that as of this moment, I have less than the various forgiveness amounts that are being bandied about in DC - which Mitchell also covers, in a near up-to-the-minute fashion, even 2 months before publication of this book. An amount that I *will* pay off before the current suspension of interest - signed by President Trump and extended by President Biden - expires, currently slated for less than two months after this book is published.)

2) The Bibliography is a bit scant at only about 15% of the text, though there is a decent portion of the book - focusing on a singular case study in recurring episodes throughout the narrative - where Mitchell conducted extensive interviews and examinations of the relevant documents personally.

Overall truly an excellent, objective look at the history and many factors that have created today's student loan problem. And as GI Joe once said, "knowing is half the battle". Very much recommended. ( )
  BookAnonJeff | Jul 11, 2021 |
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"In 1982, a new executive at Sallie Mae took home the company's financial documents to review. "You've got to be shitting me," he later told the company's CEO. "This place is a gold mine." Over the next four decades, the student loan industry that Sallie Mae and Congress created blew up into a crisis that would submerge a generation of Americans into $1.5 trillion in student debt. In The Debt Trap, Wall Street Journal reporter Josh Mitchell tells the untold story of the scandals, scams, predatory actors, and government malpractice that have created the behemoth that one of its original architects called a "monster." The tale begins in 1957 with the launch of Sputnik. Afraid that America was falling behind the Soviets in science education, Congress created the first major federal student loan program to enroll more students in college. What followed were a series of well-intentioned government actions that created a cycle of reckless lending and runaway tuition. Easy access to loans allowed colleges to raise tuition to unheard of levels, which in turn led Congress to increase loan limits and interest rates and expand who could borrow. This spiral continued as the private banks that fronted the money made huge profits on interest. "Nobody was pure in this business," one former college president said. As he charts the gripping seventy-year history of student debt in America, Mitchell never loses sight of the countless student victims ensnared by an exploitive system that depends on their debt. Mitchell also draws alarming parallels to the housing crisis in the late 2000s, showing the catastrophic consequences student debt has had on families and the nation's future. Mitchell's character-driven narrative is required reading for anyone wanting to understand the central economic issue of our day.

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