Kate Curtis-Bozio, 31 and from Woburn, Massachusetts, is among millennials struggling to gain financial security as she works to pay back the $44,000 in student loans she took out while pursuing her master’s degree.
“Financially, we can’t even plan to have any children right now, because we know how expensive it is for childcare,” said Curtis-Bozio, who is married. She works in crime analysis and mapping at a local police department during the week, and is a restaurant hostess on weekends in order to make her monthly loan payments.
“I worked there throughout grad school, and I was planning on getting rid of it when I got a full-time job,” she said. “Once I started paying back, I realized I can’t afford to get rid of this job.”
Great article on the recent Sinquefield Cup in St. Louis, the up-coming World Championship match, chess politics, and last but not least the historic performance of Fabiano Caruana. Source
“There are a few things you should probably know about FIDE—or the Federation Internationale des Echecs, if you’re feeling continental. FIDE is, by all accounts, comically corrupt, in the vein of other fishy global sporting bodies like FIFA and the IOC. Its Russian president, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, who has hunkered in office for nearly two decades now, was once abducted by a group of space aliens dressed in yellow costumes who transported him to a faraway star. Though I am relying here on Ilyumzhinov’s personal attestations, I have no reason to doubt him, as this is something about which he hasspoken quite extensively. He is of the firm belief that chess was invented by extraterrestrials, and further “insists that there is ‘some kind of code’ in chess, evidence for which he finds in the fact that there are 64 squares on the chessboard and 64 codons in human DNA.”
If you owe the bank $1,000, the bank owns you. But if you owe the bank a million dollars, you own the bank. What we want to do is say, wait a minute, student debtors alone owe $1.3 trillion. If we could start acting together, we could think a lot bigger than interest rates.
The gesture, however, is meant to be symbolic as it proves that debt can be conquered – and at a discount. Rolling Jubilee bought the $3.8m worth of student loans for a total of $106,709.48 in cash. That’s about 3¢ for $1 of student debt.
“The Rolling Jubilee doesn’t actually solve the problem. The Rolling Jubilee is a tactic and a valuable one because it exposes how debt operates,” says Gokey.
“It punches a hole through the morality of debt, through this idea that you owe X amount of dollars that the 1% says you owe. In reality, that debt is worth significantly less. The 1% is selling it to each other at bargain-based prices. You don’t actually owe that.”
Portland’s story is slightly different in that many of its immigrants have come in search of a different kind of wealth. Most people, after all, can’t willingly up and move to a new city for — rather than a job opportunity — some ephemeral or lofty ideals about homesteading and locally grown kale. But quite a few Portlanders have done so. “As our culture and expectations grow, decadence rises,” Albouy said. “We’re not the hungry immigrant nation we used to be. We’re more into meaning, into jobs that find fulfillment. And at least some people are willing to accept lower pay to go somewhere they care about.” According to Joe Cortright, the president of Impresa, a Portland-based consulting firm on regional economies, young people are increasingly telling themselves, “I’m going to move somewhere and pursue my career,” rather than, “I’m going to pursue my career and go wherever it takes me.” For “the beer, bikes and Birkenstocks people,” as Cortright put it, that means Portland. Hale, for instance, had planned to move to New York, where he found plenty of listings for graphic-design jobs. Then, by chance, he and his wife visited a friend in Portland and fell in love. “Jobs are thinner here,” he said. “But the intelligent urban planning makes my heart sing.”
Heartwarming planning, however, can only go so far. Portland’s paradox is that it attracts so many of “the young and the restless,” as demographers call them, that it has become a city of the overeducated and underemployed — a place where young people are, in many cases, forced into their semiretirement. A July report by the Oregon Employment Department fretted about the state’s low personal income and employment-to-population ratio. The average income of Oregonians in recent years “may have been a ‘victim’ of the state’s attractiveness, and a resulting population influx” by new residents who don’t earn much, the report said.
Affordability has long been one of Portland’s most attractive features. What happens when that disappears? Schrock and Jurjevich, the economists at Portland State, have coined a term, the amenity paradox, that refers to cities where the same amenities that attract people end up eroding what made a city desirable in the first place. Portland seems likely to fall into this historical cycle.