There’s no way this country is just going to let a $1.2 trillion debt disappear just because this generation of graduates can’t pay it off. Imagine what that would do to all those balance sheets leveraged twenty-to-one. (NB: some deleveraging is already going on because my loans change hands every few months, but nowhere near enough.)
The Electronic Frontier Foundation is sounding the alarm about a deal between Texas law enforcement agencies and Vigilant Solutions — a company that provides vehicle surveillance tech. The deal will give Texas police access to a bunch of automated license plate readers (ALPRs), and access to the company’s data and analytic tools. For free. How is Vigilant making money? “The government agency in turn gives Vigilant access to information about all its outstanding court fees, which the company then turns into a hot list to feed into the free ALPR systems. As police cars patrol the city, they ping on license plates associated with the fees. The officer then pulls the driver over and offers them a devil’s bargain: get arrested, or pay the original fine with an extra 25% processing fee tacked on, all of which goes to Vigilant. In other words, the driver is paying Vigilant to provide the local police with the technology used to identify and then detain the driver. If the ALPR pings on a parked car, the officer can get out and leave a note to visit Vigilant’s payment website.” Vigilant also gets to keep the data collected on citizens while the ALPRs are in use.
The question is not whether all these young people will be devoured for their great financial sins, but specifically how.
My guess is this is how the gulags begin: as debtors’ prisons. Remember, the gulags were sold as work camps for derelicts. I doubt we’ll be seeing proper make-work programs a la FDR’s New Deal, TPTB are already in the process beginning to cull the population down to 500 million. And our political economy simply can’t sustain that sort of thing right now. If it could, Michigan would be Hoovering young men up to fix its highways for $9/hr apiece.
I’m not saying this is the proper apocalypse, but I wouldn’t be surprised either. 95% of the world’s population sounds like the book of Revelations to me.