“The student loans I’ve heard you lament are how the young are trapped in debt, graduate to being flogged by that same debt, induced to take on more debt, until at last no longer young they submit to living and working to sustain debt as its addict and slave.”
I had always been indebted, I thought, even at home with my foster parents, or at the orphanage. Since college I’d been running on a hamster wheel of money debt, going nowhere.
“In a real economy of democracy you would be paid for the hard work of learning and in the same stroke mothers would be paid for their labors raising children. These, and all laborers, perform the true philanthropic work of our times, not grants made by institutions of guilt.”
She paused to study me, then elaborated, musing to herself, confident of my attention.
“Debt is the gateway drug to capitalism and its culture. The question for the young is whether to bind oneself heart and mind to this culture of the loan and never look back for fear of jinxing the investment, or to question the contract at every turn. Should they wrangle to join the ruling class, or save the world from a dictatorship of vanity and privilege,” she said, showing one palm up to one side, then the other, as if she were a scale. “Guess which wins.”
“You have to wrangle just to stay alive,” I affirmed.
“Even so. In the bordello of free markets, the young mind is bound to debt, and put in training to become its whore. Genius is tasked with inventing armaments and advertising. Technology is devised to produce a poisoned diet. From banking and Wall Street, the crown jewels of capitalism, we have feudal indenture, fraud in ever more ingenious forms, usury, war mongering...”
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