Original content for the “Student Loan” and “Education” chapters…

Longtime student and observer of the erosion of US Democracy and extreme narrowing of opportunity structure for far too many of us. I believe the energy and seeds planted by OWS must evolve into a broad organized and largely “New” kind of movement that starts by rallying around Constitutional Amendment level reform of Campaigns, Electioneering, and politics in general to reign in the influence of the ridiculously wealthy and overprivileged. It is not class warfare on our part to simply and finally decide to fight back against the ongoing and spectacularly successful class warfare that they have been waging against most of us for the last 30-40 years… If we are not among the wealthiest one tenth of one percent- and maybe throw in the top 2-3% who I can at least understand going along with the ongoing shenanigans- then we had better get together, pull together, and recognize: to paraphrase the great countercultural icons The Firesign Theatre… all the rest of us are in this thing together and “I think we are all indiginous bozos on this bus…” and our ways of life are at risk.

The moral hazard involved with Student loans is in the grand gift they have been to the banking sector. Another of the tremendously Republican accomplishments of the Democrats- in this case the Fabulous Clintons- as they forever and continue list further and further to the right in order to be taken seriously by the Business Right funding elite plutocrats who have hijacked our democracy.
Massive increases in the cost of education at the same time that institutions of higher learning have become holding facilities for people the economy can’t provide decent jobs for (along with the fine institutions of the Prison Indusrial Complex) will in effect eventually cause so much default on student loans that another major economic bubble will burst. But this time we already know the banks will be bailed out because the Federally Guaranteed Loan heist wrote it into the law in advance. Yeah free markets. And how about those brave new risk takers in the banks.

And this a good site, it appears, with this link about Occupy Wall Street stats:

with this representative quote…

Among the findings:

They aren’t all kids. Xers, Boomers, and older are also in on it: One-third of respondents is older than 35, and one-fifth is 45 or older.

It’s not all students and the educated elite. About 8% have, at best, a high school degree. And just about a quarter (26.7%) are enrolled in school. Only about 10% are full-time students.

“Get a job!” wouldn’t apply to most of them. Half of the respondents are already employed full-time, and an additional 20% work part-time. Just 13.1% are unemployed—not a whole lot more than the national average.

“Tax the rich!” could hit close to home. About 15% earn between $50,000 and $80,000 annually (pretty good anywhere except in Manhattan). Thirteen percent earn over $75,000 annually, and nearly 2% bring in more than $150,000.

It may be a party, but not that kind. The movement is often identified as a liberal, even Democrat-dominated cause. But just 27.3% of respondents call themselves Democrats (and 2.4% are Republican). And the rest, 70% call themselves independents.

Not everyone tweets. The microblogging site played a big role in getting the movement started. But that’s not how most people keep up with it. Twenty-nine percent of respondents are regular Twitter users. But 66% are Facebook regulars. The biggest online community, however, is YouTube, with about 74% being regular users.

While interesting, the survey is still a rough cut, with some gaps. For example, it’s based largely on what men said, as they make up about two-thirds of the survey takers. But the genders may not be so far apart. In an email Harrison Schultz tells Fast Company, “Response patterns for female respondents were so nearly identical to the male respondents that I won’t bother to indicate them.” The one difference: 52% of the women listen to the radio, vs. 40% the men. So Schultz is looking at this to fine-tune OWS’s target marketing. (Yes, they are doing target marketing.)

And so far, according to the survey, Occupy Wall Street would qualify as stuff white people like. The sample of non-white people, according to Schultz, is too small to even analyze. One thing he noticed, however, is that some people identify with nationality, rather than race—another item to keep in mind for target marketing. And in the vein, the organizers have been discussing doing a “non-white media day,” in which everyone who speaks to the media is of another ethnic background. They have also discussed doing an over-40 day.

On a personal note, I have noticed plenty of both at the park and the marches.

http://www.fastcompany.com/ check this site out more carefully

Posted in Random Miscellaney, The Student Loan Travesty and the Obscene Cost of Higher Education

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