Imagine handing a 6-year child a stick of dynamite and a pack of matches then expecting them to stay safe. Well that is precisely what some self-appointed student debtor advocates are doing for the student debtor and their collection of issues.
Case in point is Natalia Abrams, but she not going to blow herself up, she’s going to blow student debtors chances for solid reforms.
Abrams does not appear to understand anything about the student debt crisis or system or fundamental issues and needs for reform, according to Student Debt War Project Co-Founder Morgan Fisher.
“Look, I’m sure Ms. Abrams means well so let’s not focus on her but on this ubiquitous problem of uninformed activists getting out and stirring up some meaningless plans and objectives and otherwise ruining or undermining legitimate projects and activism needed to truly aid student debtors,” said Fisher. “She is just an example of a larger problem faced by student debtor activists seeking substantial reforms–too many people who do not know what they are talking about are getting attention,” he said.
Fisher has been working behind the scenes on the student debt issues for many years and is considered by many to be among the foremost authorities in the US on the range of key issues. He earned his wings and scars fighting and defeating not one, but two, billion dollar student loan entities in federal court as his own legal counsel. He has drafted many bill proposals to aid student debtors even though he, himself, is no longer indebted to the federal government system.
“I know the depression. I know that loss of faith and hope. I was there for years struggling like millions of others until one day I decided to quit being a victim and start being a predator—a predator attacking a federal system gone corrupt and bad,” said Fisher. “I want other student debtors to know winning is possible because I did and so have others.”
The problem the SDWP faces are many. First, to do its job properly, it must engage in political activism to get key laws changed. Such efforts deny the SDWP a non-profit status so when it sees other groups who are non-profits claiming to pursue major reform change for student debtors, it knows such groups are shams, that they cannot go far because they must otherwise lose their tax exempt status. This is why many such groups only pursue minor amounts of activism as nonprofits or give up nonprofit status altogether (unless they are willing to break the law).
Recently, Fisher visited Abrams website and posted a relevant comment but it was immediately deleted.
“Usually, websites who oppose the student debtors or the Student Debt War Project or real change tend to block our delete our commentaries. This generally proves they do not have student debtor interests at heart,” said Fisher. “Abrams is not unusual, just one example of many, in my opinion, who are not out to really serve student debtors but rather themselves—and that makes it tougher for us who are trying to do the best thing possible to repair a broken system top to bottom. Little fixes will not help anyone,” he said.
In a recent State News article, “Degrees Not Debt“, the National Education Association’s campaign of “Degrees Not Debt” dictates how the teacher’s union group is promoting a better Bill of Rights for new student debtors. Fisher says these types of sham programs are part of what is wrong with the entire system and its many hidden agendas.
“Teachers unions are a big part of what is wrong with our nation’s entire school system and especially the rising costs of tuition,” said Fisher. “When you see a teacher’s union involved, think politics, not real solutions, but a false image projection that ‘they’ are on your side—they are not and never will be,” he said. “Use logic. Teachers want higher pay. Higher pay means higher tuition. Only two entities pay tuition, largely, governments or students. If they do not want students to pay, then they must, by default, want government. Hence students have to lose more rights because government wants it’s money back and then some. We already have a life-time debt system for student loans so what is next—forced labor camps post graduation when the student fails to find a job!” said Fisher.
One of the issues the SDWP seeks to repair is transparency. It’s not enough to know which group is behind a political push related to student debt issues, but who are the people behind the curtain and who is funding them ultimately. In over 90% of the SDWP investigations of so called student debt related groups, nearly all have been proven to be funded by the lending industry. This should alarm all students because it means the information and disclosed superficial motives to help them are likely a sham.
“There are some solid groups working legitimately on the student debt issue who know a lot of the facts, details and issues, but they are relatively rare in comparison to the number of scam artists out there,” said Fisher. “We have no backers and no profit motive of any kind—we are strictly a volunteer group of like-minded student debtors trying to give back and help our fellow students with solid projects that offer concrete results. It’s hard but at least student debtors can read our materials and see that as fact—we never ask them for anything or send them to those who do because we actually do care about them,” said Fisher.
The point of this article is that we student debtors need to stay alert to the many fraudsters and false prophets who claim to want to help us but are helping something else altogether or who are watering down real solutions with meaningless ones. It’s not easy.
For me, I wish the SDWP had $10 million in its coffers because I know they would give us students back $100 million in benefits in what they do. They genuinely want to help the system improve. Instead, they do not ask for money and they have none and we students really have nobody else we can depend on so we lend a hand. We volunteer. We help the SDWP because they are trying to help us. It’s not perfect but it’s all we have and trust is everything in the student debt world.
If you can spare some time, please volunteer like I did. Let’s all work together to fix the broken system.