Financially Illiterate Morons Melt Down As Student Loan Payments Resume

(Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for We The 45 Million)

Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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Student loan repayments resumed Sunday after a three-and-a-half-year pandemic pause, and people are already freaking out.

More than 28 million borrowers woke up Sunday and realized they weren’t ever going to be part of President Joe Biden’s student loan relief program (seriously, some of them called me). Biden previously pledged to eliminate the debt of people who attended public universities and came from families earning less than $125,000 per year.

Many of those who didn’t bother to read the fine print on Biden’s plan were furious. And sure, it always sucks to have less money than you did before. But after reading about these folks, profiled by NBC News, any sympathy evolved into rage.

No one profiled by NBC News owed more than $850 per month. While that might sound like a lot of money to some people — and let’s be honest, it is a lot of money to most of us — these folks had three full years to save in order to pay off their debt. So, why didn’t they? There’s no answer for that.

Instead, many of those profiled are giving up luxuries that they seemed to think were necessities. One said she’d given up her office to work from home and canceled her cable TV subscription. Good. Cable is the worst kind of television and totally overpriced for what it is.

Another realized he owes $50,000 in parent PLUS loans. I’m sorry, but why aren’t your four children helping pay off that money? (RELATED: You’re Not Poor. You’re Financially Illiterate, And That’s Your Fault)

But the one that got me the most was a woman who is driving a 21-year-old car and isn’t going out to restaurants with her family. Like, bro, I drive an almost 20-year-old stick shift with a cigarette lighter and basically never eat at restaurants because (a) new cars are stupid and overpriced, and (b) eating at home is better for the family. Restaurants are also stupidly overpriced these days. Duh.

Financial literacy is everything. If you can educate yourself on how to use your money intelligently, the stressors that will vanish from your life are … almost unquantifiable. Even those of you with debt can make smart financial decisions to alleviate your stress and your financial dread.

But the first thing you should know about money is that complaining about it doesn’t make it magically appear. You made a choice, and now you have to deal with it. Your financial burden is no one else’s problem, especially not the taxpayers.