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Compulsory debt?

Penalty for graduates who pay off student loans early - Telegraph.

This government is so much in love with debt that it wants to impose an early-redemption penalty on students who pay off their loans before they are due. That's bad enough but it's not a new idea. Long-term lenders have been known to impose contractual penalties on those who pay off their loans early, before they have had chance to make a profit. Of course, there is the slight ethical difference that it's a matter of contract. These students will not get to shop around.

The government is planning, however, to take the concept much further. They are going to penalise me for paying my daughters' university fees as they go along to avoid saddling them with student debt. Other middle class families take the relatively cheap money and invest it or pay off their mortgage. I have left it with the Treasury to be wasted in other ways. If you ask me, present and future taxpayers should be thanking me. Certainly it's pretty ripe to punish me, isn't it?

Tell me again, Polly, how this Cameron fellow is the heir to Thatcher?

I am a prudent man and generally averse to debt. For this, the value of my pension has been decimated by a stimulus programme designed to prop up those who borrowed beyond their means. My daughters (everyone's daughters, actually, not to mention their sons) have been indebted for their whole lives by the same programme. This government seems as keen as the last one for us all to be feckless chavs.

Whatever may we expect next as punishment for our financial eccentricity? Is every lender we ever failed to borrow from going to stick us with a penalty? What was it these politicians were saying about grasping bankers again?