And the US feared that they were falling behind. One of our greatest and most
glaring deficiencies is the… America newsreels like this one stoked anxieties that the country was wasting its intellectual talents. So in 1958, President Eisenhower signed a bill that let college students borrow up to $1,000 a year from the federal government. And ever since student loans have helped more and more people go to college. But as demand for higher education increased… …the cost did, too. So students took out bigger loans each year. In the early 1970s the average loan was about $1,000 a year in today’s dollars. Now it’s around $7,000 a
year. And when you factor in interest… … the average person with debt owes about $30,000 when they get their bachelor’s degree. If we combine all the student
debt Americans currently owe… … it adds up to 1.6 trillion dollars. This is a student debt crisis. But what if the government cancelled all of this debt. Sanders: Under the proposal that we introduced today, But 1.6 trillion dollars is a lot of debt to
cancel. So it’s worth asking: Who exactly would this help? The millennial generation was told that the only way they would get the good jobs available
is if they received a college education. … tens of thousands hundreds of thousands
and millions billions of dollars to our students and it is now crushing them. First let’s look at exactly who owes this money. Each of these bubbles represents about a thousand households. The bigger the bubble, the more they owe. So first let’s organize the debts by age. Okay we can clearly see that most of the
debt is owed by people in their 20s and
30s. That includes some of these really huge debts held by relatively few people. And since younger people haven’t had time to build wealth… It means the net worth of people with
student loans are on the lower end. So it seems like canceling student debt could overwhelmingly help younger people who don’t have money. But let’s dig a little deeper. Let’s try organizing the debts by education level. This way we can see what their student loans paid for. The biggest group are those with bachelor’s degrees. But the most debt is held by people who
either have a masters or beyond, like a
PhD or an MD. And they owe a lot of money. But when we organize these debts by household income… … we can see that many of these people also earn a lot of money. In fact, the majority of debt is held by
people here in the middle class… … and these people earn more money because they have an education. So let’s add our findings to the list: It looks like the
main beneficiaries are younger people… … who don’t have a lot of money yet. But
they have the degrees and jobs to give them a promising future. Bernie Sanders wants to cancel student debt for everyone, including people over here who earned hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Elizabeth Warren wants to cancel
all debt for these bubbles… … households earning less than a hundred thousand dollars a year. Above a hundred thousand, dollars the loan forgiveness phases out. Until we reach $250,000. So these people
wouldn’t get any help. Here’s the hard thing about canceling student debt. All these people had the opportunity to go to college. And many of them do okay because of it. But here is everyone else — — the white dots who didn’t go to college,
many of whom never got the chance. Canceling the country student debt won’t
help them at all. But for Sanders and Warren this is part of a larger belief about what America should be Right now, we have an economy in the 21st century that basically says you’re gonna need some post high school training. A century
ago… when that was true about high school, we made high school free for everybody. People should not be punished for getting a higher education at a
competitive global economy. Seventy years ago, America was worried great students were being fenced out of college. People who could save the country. People who could help America get ahead. “They got the flag up now and you can see the stars and stripes.” Now this conversation is about who is allowed to build a stable future. And the great debts we pay for a desperate chance at that dream.