Share this story
Close X
Switch to Desktop Site

US debt is hindering growth and burdening youth, Mitch Daniels warns

Former Gov. Mitch Daniels, now Purdue's chief, says of American youth: 'This generation has a right to be as upset with its elders as any in history. They are going to inherit a mountain of debt.'

View video

Purdue University President Mitch Daniels speaks at the Monitor-hosted breakfast for reporters in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013.

Michael Bonfigli/The Christian Science Monitor

View photo

Purdue University President Mitch Daniels, director of the Office of Management and Budget under George W. Bush and a two-term Republican governor of Indiana before assuming his current role in 2013, was the guest at the Oct. 30 Monitor Breakfast.

Q: President Obama's proposal to tie federal financial aid to new government ratings of universities and colleges:

About these ads

A: "The general idea of focusing more on performance ... is a good idea, but I am pretty dubious about the federal government being the ones to put a system together."

The nation's $17 trillion debt:

"The debts we are piling up right now are an obstacle to growth.... It is the largest nonmilitary danger we have ever faced."

Young people and the nation's finances:

"This generation has a right to be as upset with its elders as any in history. They are going to inherit a mountain of debt."

Young people and the Affordable Care Act:

"[It] soaks the young to benefit their elders. Premiums for young people will go up way beyond whatever is actuarially fair and accurate in order to subsidize the elders."

About these ads

The longer-term response to the Affordable Care Act by young people:

"I don't think they have quite focused on this. But when they do, they are going to say 'We got handed a really raw deal here.' "

Why faster economic growth is critical:

"We are not going to be ... an economically successful country, a solvent country, or – frankly – a societally harmonious country at 1 to 2 percent growth rates. It will destroy something bigger than the middle class; it will destroy the sense of upward mobility and therefore social cohesiveness that we have always been blessed with."