Back when I was a wee little girl I had the dream of becoming a Senator. I thought it would be cool to be an elitist in the top 100 half of Congress than just a number in the House. Over the years that desire has all but died as time and time again American politics seems like a way for some of the smartest people to showcase they were physically able to attain a master’s in this or Ph.D in that, but they mentally never left high school – some middle school.
A few days ago, I was given renewed hope in politics when I stumbled upon a video of Elizabeth Warren. Warren is a Senator from Massachusetts who means business. While I could bore you with facts about her and how she is being considered to be a Deomcratic presidential favorite in 2016, I just want to highlight a recent piece of her work where she ripped into a bank lobbyist. Essentially there are provisions for almost all loan borrowers to experience some form of financial relief through filing for bankruptcy – unless your loan is a private student loan. Federal student loans have been excluded from bankruptcy since 1998, and in 2005 the banks successfully lobbied against bankruptcy protection for private student loans as well. While the federal government offers a little help with a few loan modification options, the banks hardly offer anything – if at all.
This heated discussion is based off of the CNN Money story about a family whose daughter suddenly passed away and her three orphan children were taken in by the grandparents. The daughter’s $100,000 loans morphed into $200,000 of debt after her parents could not make all of the demanding payments and the escape option of bankruptcy was not an option. It’s sad to hear that her parents have already eaten through their retirement. With no relief in sight, this family will most likely be financially strapped for years to come.