“Occupy San Diego” has begun! But if you want a bailout like the banks then try bankruptcy. (But let’s add student loans to the list of dischargeable debts)
October 9, 2011 1 Comment
The “Occupy San Diego” movement is currently in full swing in our city. Protestors have marched through San Diego and occupied a park in downtown. It remains unclear just what they are protesting though. Some in the movement say it’s “corporate greed”. According to an article in Sign on San Diego the protestors are not just angry about corporate greed but they also object to the money flowing into the political system from the financial industry and the banks. According to the “Occupy San Diego” website those in the movement say they are for “social and economic justice” and they are protesting “global financial corruption” and the financial influence that has infiltrated everything and led to the current economic crisis.
On the “Occupy San Diego” website they also have a list of items they recommend people bring to the protest, along with their tents, much like the lists for camping trips. They tell you where the bathrooms are and whether the are 24 hour or not. They talk about first aid, entertainment, as well as security. Mostly they seem to be ready to stay and occupy these parks in San Diego for a long time as they prepare their list of demands.
Apparently the movement is being advertised and spread rapidly by social media and it is gaining steam. Where it goes and when it ends is anyone’s guess. I must admit that this thing is somewhat fascinating as I can’t remember another movement like this even though I don’t necessarily agree with some of the premises like the anti-capitalist, pro-government emphasis. I personally prefer small government libertarian ideas that emphasize personal freedom. But the movement is certainly interesting and I intend to drive by and maybe mingle as I work downtown.
We who practice bankruptcy law though do believe in our cause too. We believe that we bring freedom from the terrible burdens of debt to average people who are 99%ers. We regulary help free people from this debt but we also bring equality too. We bankruptcy attorneys can take you down the same road as one of these corporations that regularly file for bankruptcy and shed their debt. Any one individual person (or couple) can file and be just like a corporation.
We in bankruptcy believe he average person’s bailout is a bankruptcy. What is a bailout after all except a forgiveness of your debt? You don’t have to wait for the government to give you something that only big financial institutions have. The 99% already have the power to get their debts forgiven. You can get your debts forgiven tomorrow. The legal framework already has been in place for hundreds of years. Average people just have to avail themselves of the bankruptcy process.
And if you are unemployed and have no income to pay those debts then bankruptcy makes even more sense. Imagine waking up tomorrow debt free. How would that feel? You could get your bailout just like big financial corporations did if you file for bankruptcy. It’s a wonderful thing for sure.
It is also true that many people around the country have massive student loans left over from their education. Many people had to borrow heavily to originally fund their education so they could get a job. Many of those people cannot get a job now in this economy and they have no money to pay those loans back.
It is also true that these debts are not currently dischargeable in bankruptcy. In fact Obama’s latest spending bill would allow private collectors for these loans robocall your cell phone to harass you into paying these loans. He is making the situation therefore worse by allowing these companies to go after you for debts which you probably cannot pay.
If this movement wants to put in a demand that these debts should be dischargeable in bankruptcy then the movement would gain the support of mostly all those who work in bankruptcy because we believe that these debts should be dischargeable. There is no reason why students should be saddled with these debts forever but someone who over-used their credit cards can get rid of those debts.
A stipulation could be put in the new law that the student loan debt would not be dischargeable until they are 10 or even 20 years old. This would give collectors time to collect these debts and if they can’t collect in this time then they would have to forgo collection if the person filed bankruptcy. I believe that it’s fair to say that f the collectors can’t collect within 10 or 20 years then the debtor probably will not ever be able to pay. Those debts are probably uncollectable and debtors should be freed from having to pay them the way financial institutions have been given infusions of cash so they can continue to operate their businesses.
How about including that demand that in this protest? If this happens then more people will obtain financial freedom and greater parity with corporations. Student loans can be onerous for people who have no way to pay them in this economy. How about a student loan bailout? Make these loans dischargeable in bankruptcy and that is all you would have to do.
As for the protest I will continue to watch with great interest as I want to see where it goes and how it ends up. Will these people ever go home? Will hey set up tent cities? Will violence occur or will they be peaceful? Will police make arrests? How many will join those already there? Then where will they all go? Will they shut down operations in this city? What will happen nationwide?
I will continue to follow and blog about this movement.
I am a bankruptcy attorney practicing bankruptcy law in San Diego, CA. For more information please visit my website at www.farquharlaw.com or www.freshstartsandiego.com. Or call my office for a free consultation at (619) 702-5015. Call now for free credit report and analysis!
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