Young people: you have a voice. You have power.

Yes, you do have a voice and you do have power — but only if you use it.

If you don’t, the world you grow up in will be a terrible place. If you do, there is no limit to what you can accomplish.

Don’t save the world for me, or any of us old folks. Do it for yourselves. I’ll do what I can to help … but don’t count on “adults” getting it right. We’re the ones who screwed it up.

2 responses to “Young people: you have a voice. You have power.

  1. Yes.

    For example, the current tax proposal before Congress would savage higher education in the US in significant and under-appreciated ways. The cruelest is probably the attack on graduate student assistants, who with funding cuts have become ever more central in delivering undergraduate instruction. This attack consists in making waived tuition a taxable benefit.

    As the linked worksheets show, Columbia University GA Amanda Rose receives a grad stipend of $38k yearly, paying a little over $3k in tax. Under the proposal, her waived tuition would be taxed, raising her imputed income to nearly $90k, and her tax bill to nearly $12k.

    International GAs would have it worse, since they don’t get standard deductions.

    It’s hard to believe that this is an intentional and cynically-conceived attack on higher education–my default assumption would be that it is careless and thoughtless rather than intentional–but it could hardly be more effective if it were. GAs are an essential part of the university community and how it works, delivering undergrad instruction and performing unglamorous but essential services of all sorts. This tax proposal would create enormous havoc in the American system of higher education.

  2. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

    It’s hard to believe that this is an intentional and cynically-conceived attack on higher education…

    Doc Snow, you are clearly not cynical enough for these times…

    Ryan Cooper writes at The Week:

    The only possible conclusion is that the plutocracy is no longer satisfied with taking almost all the income growth. They now want to diminish everyone else’s share; as George Carlin once said, “they want more for themselves, and less for everybody else.” The most notable victims reflect the cultural enemies that the Republican Grievance Industrial Complex has been whipping its base up in a frenzy over for decades — college students, coastal elites, and comfortable liberals — but the pain will be broadly shared. As Mike Konczal details, in broad terms it is an assault on workers to benefit capitalists: people who own things instead of working.

    Some of the wealthiest and most privileged people who’ve ever existed are attempting to loot the pockets of penniless grad students so they can have even more money to spend on stuff like $450-million paintings. They’ve forfeited any right to deference or consideration.

    It’s only an attack on higher education if you’re not rich.