Nathan Kottke for president

Genius: To the Editor: Dear Mr. Bernanke and Mr. Paulson: My student loans are too big and it is hurting the economy. Can I have a bailout, please? I need $92,000. Thanks. Nathan Kottke St. Paul, Sept. 17, 2008 (Hat tip: Matt Yglesias) … I should note that, while the above is obviously a bitter ...

Genius:

To the Editor:

Dear Mr. Bernanke and Mr. Paulson:

Genius:

To the Editor:

Dear Mr. Bernanke and Mr. Paulson:

My student loans are too big and it is hurting the economy. Can I have a bailout, please? I need $92,000.

Thanks.

Nathan Kottke
St. Paul, Sept. 17, 2008

(Hat tip: Matt Yglesias)

… I should note that, while the above is obviously a bitter joke, here’s the thing. Financial industry lobbyists are hitting the halls of the Capitol Building hard this week "to ensure as many institutions as possible benefit" from the administration’s $700 billion bailout plan. Bloomberg reports that already, a language tweak in guidance from the Treasury Department to Congress suggests that "instruments such as car and student loans, credit-card debt and any other troubled asset" could be included, raising the total cost of the plan significantly. Maybe Kottke’s little joke isn’t so far-fetched after all.

See Also: Is It Time for the U.S. to Issue a Digital Dollar?

More from Foreign Policy

A worker cuts the nose off the last Ukraine's Tupolev-22M3, the Soviet-made strategic aircraft able to carry nuclear weapons at a military base in Poltava, Ukraine on Jan. 27, 2006. A total of 60 aircraft were destroyed  according to the USA-Ukrainian disarmament agreement.
A worker cuts the nose off the last Ukraine's Tupolev-22M3, the Soviet-made strategic aircraft able to carry nuclear weapons at a military base in Poltava, Ukraine on Jan. 27, 2006. A total of 60 aircraft were destroyed according to the USA-Ukrainian disarmament agreement.

Why Do People Hate Realism So Much?

The school of thought doesn’t explain everything—but its proponents foresaw the potential for conflict over Ukraine long before it erupted.

Employees watch a cargo ship at a port in China, which is experiencing an economic downturn.
Employees watch a cargo ship at a port in China, which is experiencing an economic downturn.

China’s Crisis of Confidence

What if, instead of being a competitor, China can no longer afford to compete at all?

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell testifies in the U.S. Senate in Washington on Sept. 24, 2020.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell testifies in the U.S. Senate in Washington on Sept. 24, 2020.

Why This Global Economic Crisis Is Different

This is the first time since World War II that there may be no cooperative way out.

Chinese President Xi Jinping (left) and Premier Li Keqiang applaud at the closing session of the National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 11.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (left) and Premier Li Keqiang applaud at the closing session of the National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 11.

China Is Hardening Itself for Economic War

Beijing is trying to close economic vulnerabilities out of fear of U.S. containment.