Monday, July 24, 2017

Corbyn and Student debt

Today's daily mail headline:

So when he said here that reducing the existing "massive debt" burden of those who have already graduated was a "priority" and added "I will deal with it" Jeremy Corbyn did not realise what the costs involved were. I am reminded of a comment by William Safire:

And someone who says he will deal with an issue when he has no idea how much it will cost, whether he describes it as a "promise", a "pledge" or a "priority" or an "ambition," cannot know whether he will be able to do what he is saying he will do or not. Even if such a man turns out to be right - which Jeremy Corbyn did not - he is not being straight with people.


Jim said...

well why not, come on what did the bank actually lend them? what?

oh they wrote it down on both sides of a balance sheet somewhere.

What is the debt? what did the bank actually give them that needs to be repaid?

Chris Whiteside said...

That is an extremely good point, Jim, and I think you can argue that the scheme is really much more like a graduate tax than a loan.

However, there is a PERCEPTION of a massive debt, and that is a real issue even though the debt is not at all similar to most other forms of debt.

(Can't think of any other form of debt which you don't have to pay back if your income stays below a certain level, for instance, or any other form of debt of which whatever you have not paid back after 30 years is automatically written off.)

Anonymous said...

That's why we should be honest about it and tax all graduates instead.

Chris Whiteside said...

There's a case for that - in fact you can make an argument that's what the present situation actually does - but I don't think you should retrospectively make the terms on which people went to university less favourable.