rayiner wrote:Sauer Grapes wrote:rayiner wrote:Sauer Grapes wrote:Maybe so, but personal responsibility is at the root of the issue causing the problem (amongst other causes).
That's like saying gravity is the root cause of airplane crashes. Technically true, but not usefully so. The "problem," in the sense of things we can solve through policy (as opposed to facts of nature we just have to deal with), is that given the information asymmetries in the market and bounded rationality of the participants, people overvalue education. How do we address that? Simply continuing to let people overpay isn't going to fix that market failure.
I don't agree it is the same as saying gravity is the root cause of airplane crashes at all.
Gravity technically causes airplanes to fall out of the sky. But gravity is not something you can change. You just have to design around it. The same is true for the moral character of the people.
I think we are looking at this different ways. People taking personal responsibility is not just about their moral character. It is far more complex than gravity (simplifying gravity to a layman's understanding of it and not a physicist's understanding) and it starts with the decision of whether or not to take out loans and if so, how much. It continues throughout school with your decisions as to your major (hopefully keeping in mind your debt or lack thereof), your decision of job (if you are lucky enough to have a decision or even a job), and also your decision to live within your means (again if you are lucky enough to have a job). Some of that definitely speaks to moral character but I don't view that as exclusively a moral character issue. Some of that can be changed or influenced though, unlike gravity in your example.
Also, moral character of the people is also unlike gravity in that it can be influenced by external factors such as public perception of non-repayers, legislation such as this "excusing" a decision not to repay (I understand there will be some that can't repay and it's not always a choice, but a lot of time it has to do with choices), and how easy it is to get away with not repaying. That is not to say I think the current laws making student loan debt 100% un-dischargable is how it should stay.