Some of the people behind the long-fizzed 2011 Occupy Wall Street protests are now buying up certain student loan debt and extinguishing it.
On Wednesday, to celebrate the third anniversary of the failed Occupy Wall Street movement, members of an Occupy offshoot called Strike Debt! announced that they have purchased $3.8 million in private student loan debt since January.
The buyers of the debt have forgiven 100 percent of it, CNN reports.
The $3.8 million in purchased student debt represents approximately 0.0000031 percent of the $1.2 trillion in outstanding student loan debt currently owed in the United States.
The people behind Strike Debt! spent just over $100,000 to buy the $3.8 million from unspecified debt collectors.
None of the debt is student loans backed by the federal government because that is off limits to debt collectors (and, for that matter, debt forgivers). However, privately issued student loan debts can be bought and sold by third parties.
The various debts purchased by Strike Debt! had been owed by former students at Everest College, which is owned by Corinthian Colleges, a for-profit college behemoth that was recently shut down by the Education Department over allegations of a host of predatory and shady practices.
In July, Corinthian Colleges, announced that it would be closing its doors. (RELATED: Obama Administration Kills Corinthian Colleges)
“Despite Corinthian’s dire financial straits, checkered past and history of lying to and misleading vulnerable students, tens of thousands of people may still be liable for the loans they have incurred while playing by the rules and trying to get an education,” an unidentified Strike Debt! member told CNN.
Current and former students who have had a portion of their debt forgiven thanks to Strike Debt! are happy.
Former Everest College student Levia Welch, 32, said Strike Debt! has helped her shed a debt worth $669. Though she still owes about $16,000 in loans, she said she grateful for the group’s efforts to help her. (RELATED: NYC Arrest Records: Many Occupy Wall Street Protesters Live In Luxury)
“Debt is the tie that binds the 99%, whether you are a student delinquent on your student loans or a parent struggling to pay healthcare bills,” Strike Debt! member Ann Larson declared in a statement obtained by CNN. “Being forced into debt for basic social services is a systemic problem.” (RELATED: Former Union Boss At Occupy Event: Our Goal Is To ‘Overthrow The Capitalist System And Build Communism’)
Neither Strike Debt! nor another Occupy offshoot, The Debt Collective, do much in the way of explaining how they have raised $3.8 million for their “Rolling Jubilee debt cancellation initiative.”
The ultimate goal of Strike Debt! is to eliminate “personally debt-financed” education.
In a study published in July, researchers at Stanford University discovered that people who describe themselves as “unattractive” are two times more likely to donate to the Occupy movement. (RELATED: SCIENCE: Ugly People Twice As Likely To Give To Occupy Movement)