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  • Writer's pictureJason Flurry, CFP

Give me liberty or give me debt

Join the growing revolution of parents who are fed up with the high cost of college and who have started learning how to beat the colleges at their own game.

I’m probably a lot like you in the sense that most of what I learned in school didn’t seem to have much relevance in the real world. I mean remember the math problems, like Train A leaves Chicago at 10am traveling at 40 miles per hour and Train B leaves St. Louis at 11am traveling at 50 miles per hour. At what point do the trains meet? Okay help me understand. When were trains EVER supposed to meet head on going that fast? ...It just didn’t make any sense for me.

Anyway, I guess some things do stick with us no matter how hard we try to forget them. For me, some of that was US History. I just loved all of those famous quotes like, “I regret that I only have but one life to lose for my country” and “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Who can forget the phrase, “ I have a dream…” and probably, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

One of my favorite quotes was from Patrick Henry who said, “Give me liberty or give me death!

Liberty is one of the great distinguishing characteristics of America. It’s the liberty we have to imagine our own dreams in this great land of opportunity and then go after them in the pursuit of happiness. Now don’t worry, I’m not running for anything and this post is not going to be a campaign speech, but what it is meant to be is a reminder that our forefathers envisioned a life for us that included liberty, freedom, and prosperity.

A good education and a college degree has certainly added to many people’s ability to earn a good living and share their ideas with the world, which of course has benefited all of us in different ways with breakthroughs in technology, medicine, personal development, and so on. But in the process of learning and pursuing our dreams, something has gone terribly wrong.

We are needlessly mortgaging our kids’ futures As you’ve probably see me reference in previous articles I’ve written, the student debt crisis in American today is out of control. Over 44 million people are carrying $1,5 trillion in student debt, and that doesn’t even consider personal loans like credit cards, car loans, and mortgages. We are in serious trouble financially. And the widespread belief that college is a mandatory ingredient in the recipe for success pushes anxiety levels and blood pressure higher as we stress our bodies, our relationships and our finances to hopefully make a brighter future possible for our children.

For many people college still seems to be the pathway to liberty. But with so many of them underestimating the cost of college and approaching their kids’ college years unprepared financially, the sad reality is their pursuit of liberty requires them to go into debt, which is the OPPOSITE of liberty and freedom. It almost seems like people are taking Patrick Henry’s quote of “Give me liberty or give me death” and modernized it to say, “Give me liberty or give me debt.” – with only the latter part of that phrase being definite.

It’s time for a change! When Patrick Henry made his famous quote, he was speaking to the leaders of the Virginia colony and petitioning them to raise up a cavalry or a militia to protect Virginia’s interest in what he felt was a unavoidable war with England (what we now refer to as the Revolutionary War). I believe it’s time we took a similar stand and rose up as parents to fight against the high cost of college and the massive debt bubble that will no doubt one day cripple our economy and hurt millions of people.

We need to start our own revolution to educate and liberate those who want the best for their kids’ futures. By doing so we can also educate and liberate those who are working so hard to preserve their standard of living, protect their retirement savings, and avoid the pitfalls being in debt brings to those who are enslaved by it.

I think it’s time we stand up and take control of our futures and the destiny of our children by learning how to be more educated consumers when it comes to college. It’s time we learned how to manage our finances in such a way that we are not dependent on the bank, the government, or the stock market any longer. And it’s time we look out for our own best interests as parents and families so we can get more value from good opportunities and achieve the kind of outcomes we desire most for our kids when it comes to college.

Who you trust determines the quality of your life The government and the colleges want us to think that we have to follow their advice in order to be successful when planning for college, but they’re wrong. They have their own reasons for wanting you to think that way. If they can keep you in need and in debt, you have to depend on them – and they benefit from that.

Because liberty and debt can’t go together, we have to find our own solutions to making college more affordable. And that’s why I’ve dedicated the majority of my professional career to helping families get their kids in to the best colleges possible and pay for it without going broke. In fact, the hundreds of customized plans we’ve built for people just like you show you how to not only pay for college in a comfortable manner, they also show you how to be better off financially AFTER paying for college than you are now.

That kind of knowledge and insight keeps the door open so you have options financially when you are managing life’s most important milestones. With those options comes the liberty to bank on yourself instead of having to get permission to borrow money and then tie up your cash flow for however many years in the future paying it back.

You’re not alone I truly want you to see your kids get into the best colleges possible and see you reach your financial goals so you can have the best life possible. That’s what my mission as a College Planning Specialist is all about and I hope you will take this challenge to heart to become a more educated consumer when it comes to your kids’ college plans.

Join the revolution to make college more affordable and tell others who are in the same boat that there is a better way. College is not likely to get cheaper in the future, but with the right planning and insights into how to beat the college at their own game, we can make college more affordable for ourselves and for those we care about in our families and in our communities.

Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, and if you’re like me, you have one too. Take charge of your family’s college plans and talk with a College Planning Specialist today so your dreams have a better chance of coming true. You can do this! You just need the right person to show you how. And together we can make a difference that will impact generations to come – for the better!



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