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Yes, Biden’s Student Loan ‘Forgiveness’ Is Also Immoral


I’m a fan of Freddie deBoer, who’s one of the most interesting writers on the left these days. In his newsletter this morning, he takes aim at a short piece I wrote debunking the silly talking point comparing PPP and student loan “forgiveness:”

Here’s the Federalist summarizing a lot of conservative sentiment on the comparison between student loan forgiveness and PPP loans:

PPP loans, unlike student loans, were intended to be cash transfers from the government. They were structured to be forgivable “loans” before the law was passed. No one broke a contract. No one changed the parameters of the loans. No president walked in and unilaterally transferred the responsibility of PPP payments to other businesses.

This is supposed to be some kind of gotcha, but as a moral distinction it fails utterly. OK, they weren’t really loans but cash transfers. So: why were cash transfers given to many vastly rich businesses and individuals and not to people struggling under the weight of student loans?

DeBoer seems unaware that the PPP program wasn’t aimed at “vastly rich businesses” but small businesses with 500 or fewer employees. Nor was PPP a “stimulative grant.” “Stimulus” bills are inflation-inducing, job growth-chilling cronyistic boondoggles for big business and big unions, and I am happy to oppose them. PPP was implemented by the Small Business Administration, and stands for “Paycheck Protection Program,” because its purpose was job retention—in reaction to the state forcibly shutting down the economy and potentially destroying millions of livelihoods.

Like most massive government programs, PPP was clumsily implemented and rife with corruption. And yet, for all its faults, PPP was far more effective in helping working people than sending them checks, because it saved their jobs and maintained stability by allowing full-time employees to hold onto their benefits, health insurance, etc. The “loans” were only “forgivable” if

Continue Reading at The Federalist.

The Federalist

A web magazine of culture, entertainment, and politics. Be lovers of freedom and anxious for the fray.

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