FOR SOME students, college debt can be a disincentive to attend or a crushing burden afterward. For others, many of whom are starting classes now, it is a reasonable investment in a degree that will lead to increased lifetime earnings. As they look for crowd-pleasing solutions to the college debt “crisis,” the Democratic candidates aren’t making the right distinctions.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), for example, would make public higher education free, an expensive proposition that would subsidize a lot of rich people. Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s plan is smarter but also imperfectly targeted.