Student Loans

Student Debt Forgiveness Folly

Plus: The editors field a listener question on abortion.


In this week's The Reason Roundtable, editors Matt Welch, Peter Suderman, and Nick Gillespie are joined by Associate Editor Liz Wolfe as they criticize President Joe Biden's recently announced student loan forgiveness program.

2:07: Biden's executive order to cancel student debt.

29:33: Weekly Listener Question:

Why is the abortion debate within libertarianism treated so dismissively by everyone on The Reason Roundtable? Most other topics are approached with an evenhandedness that attempts to at least acknowledge that those who disagree with the panelists are doing so in good faith and are at least attempting to be reasonable. It's not surprising that everyone on The Roundtable is pro-choice. But why can't you all acknowledge your disagreement with pro-life libertarians is over fundamental values that libertarianism can't resolve? The way you approach the subject makes your own colleagues like Liz Wolfe into pariah libertarians who have no place in the movement. Pro-life libertarians begin with the premise that life starts at conception and that all humans have human rights. Further, in this line of thinking, the most foundational right (if any rights exist at all) is the right to not be killed without just cause. And so we conclude that the right of a baby to not be killed outweighs a woman's right to not be pregnant or not to provide the sustenance a growing baby needs to live in her womb. It is perfectly rational for someone else to say that he values a woman's autonomy more than the rights of a potential human life (or even an actual human life), but these two positions are irreconcilable. Why does everyone on The Roundtable go around masquerading as if their position on abortion is based on pure reason and science and the only acceptable libertarian position instead of acknowledging that it really boils down to values and you don't value a baby's life before she is born more than the mother's autonomy?

49:58: This week's cultural recommendations.

Mentioned in this podcast:

"TGIF: Debts Forgiven and Debts Forgotten," by Nick Gillespie

"Emma Camp: Student Loan Forgiveness Is Bad News and Bad Policy," by Peter Suderman

"The Student Loan Debate Isn't Just About Money. It's About the Experiences Students Like Me Sacrificed." by Fiona Harrigan

"Forgiving Student Debt Without Abolishing the Federal Loan Program Is Morally Wrong," by Robby Soave

"Debate: Forgive Student Debt?" by Intelligence Squared Debates

"Get Ready for the Post-Roe Sex Police!" by Nick Gillespie

Send your questions to Be sure to include your social media handle and the correct pronunciation of your name.

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