Adam Ruins Everything – How College Loans Got So Evil | truTV

‘Sup, friendo? Care for a loanski? Hit me, loan tender. See, Adam, student
loans help people. A lot of us wouldn’t be able
to go to college without them. (Adam)
Right, they’re
a necessity. That’s why it’s
even more disturbing what they’re
doing to people. Chill, Sheldon,
everybody’s doing it. That’s true. 42 million Americans
have student loan debt totaling $1.3 trillion. Trillion? That’s a whole
lot of Pokémon Go coins. And student loan debt has become
the worst kind of debt. Let me tell you a story. Before 1972, students could
get federally backed loans to pay for school. But there weren’t
enough to go around. Please, sir,
may I have a loan? All tapped out, sorry. (Adam)
But then, Richard Nixon created the Student Loan Marketing Association. Or as it’s known today
Sallie Mae. Now, Sallie, your job
is to buy loans from the banks so they can lend more. But Uncle Sam is watching. So, don’t be a crook. This system freed up financial
institutions to issue more loans which meant more
students could go to college. Please, just one. Look, I told you,
there’s no more– Whoa!
Thanks, Sallie! The party’s on! (crowd whooping) (Uncle Sam)
Uh, loan responsibly, now. Just loan responsibly. Seems like a good system. It was! But the party foul began
when the government moved to privatize Sallie Mae
in the 1990s. I’m tired
of playing chaperone. You’re free, Sallie. (gasps) Free market. (Adam)
A compromise between
President Clinton and congressional republicans
cut Sallie Mae loose. Who wants loans, bitches?! (Adam) Now Sallie Mae was in it
for the profits. And profits they received. They made a fortune
off of government fees. This chick is awesome. I’m gonna get
loaned up tonight. Sallie Mae poured their
new-found wealth into projects designed to
increase those profits. Come on, dude,
she’s not that shady. Oh, you’d be surprised. Fearing competition, Sallie Mae
started marketing like crazy. (cash register opens) (Adam) They paid colleges to drop direct government loans and sign up
for their program… Hey! Ditch the clown
and this could all be yours. (Adam) … and sponsored cruises
for financial aid officers. Oh, you boys have
to come on my boat. Sallie Mae even placed
undercover reps in university call centers
where they tricked students into thinking they were talking
to college loan officers. You have got to meet
this girl. She is so cool. And she didn’t even pay me to say that. Sallie Mae, really doing
everybody dirty like that. I’m afraid so. And soon, students
were stuck with the worst kind
of debt you can have. Often, they’re encouraged
to take out more loans than they can even afford. What’s happening? Don’t worry about
that right now. These are the best
four years of your life! Yeah, I’m 17,
I know what I’m doing. Hey, my payments
are super low. I’ll finish these soon. Sorry, you won’t. (Cole)
No! Many borrowers have monthly
payments that are so low, they don’t even
cover the interest. You could be in a situation
where you’re paying hundreds of dollars a month, but the
amount you owe is still growing. Oh, God, I can’t
keep up with this. One in four borrowers are
behind on their student loans. And over eight million
are in default. What? That’s crazy! (loud thud) And here’s where
it gets really scary. Unlike other types of debt, if you default on
a federal student loan, the government can garnish
up to 15% of your wages, tax refunds and social
security benefits. Hell, yeah!
Rent money, baby. What the– Sorry, Uncle chooses
where your money goes now. (Adam)
And if your parents
co-signed your loan, their income can
be garnished too. I’m sorry, Mom and Dad. I just wanted to go here because the school colors
matched my Flyknits. Adam, this is too much. Make it stop!
I wanna file
for bankruptcy. Oh! Sorry, you can’t. Sallie Mae spent decades
lobbying congress to roll back
consumer protections. And it all paid off in 2005 when Sallie Mae won their crowning achievement. Because now, unlike almost
all other forms of debt, it is nearly impossible
to declare bankruptcy for student loans. It’s insane. You sign a piece of paper when you’re 18, and you can get
stuck for life. (moaning) Oh, I can’t get them off! In 2010, the government
finally cut out
middle men like Sallie Mae, but it wasn’t enough. A generation of Americans
have had to financially cripple themselves with debt
just to get the basic education that will allow them
to survive in today’s economy. That’s nauseating. Yeah, it is. But let me tell you about
a few things you can do to– Oh, I really mean
that’s nauseating. Oh, God!
(retching) Oh, for once,
Adam isn’t the barf boy.

100 comments on “Adam Ruins Everything – How College Loans Got So Evil | truTV”

  1. Capt Zoom says:

    I don't understand the figure 1.3 trillion divided by 42 million is only $31 a person something. Doesn't Sound right there

  2. David Gerstein says:

    "They're a necessity".

    False. I got through college by taking advantage of Pell grants and not wasting my money on dorms, booze and useless crap I don't need. I stayed at home and treated school like work, not a party.

    Also, take this from a college graduate: universities are overrated. Unless you want to be a doctor, a professor or an engineer, you really don't need a bachelors nearly as much as you think you do(mainly due to dipshits like Adam who think college should be free). I got my degree in management information systems. If I could do things all over again, I would get my A+ and Network+ certifications after my senior year in high school, get a Help Desk job and then go to the local community college for an AS in Networking. Significantly cheaper and I still gain skills that employers are looking for. Employers don't care where you went to school.

    If you REALLY want to make money, learn a trade and get paid to learn as an apprentice. You can also join the military and the only thing taken out of your paycheck are taxes.

  3. Christian Barrett says:

    So as usual right wing neo-liberal policies screwed a generation. Why am I not surprised?

  4. Soda Frog12 says:

    3 years going thru college so far and I have no loans.

  5. Stephen Henkel says:

    That Pokemon Go joke aged like warm milk.

  6. Venicouse says:

    government greedy

  7. Mario Gámez says:

    Ever heard of free healthcare & free University education? It's something a lot of countries have.
    ¿Ever heard of maternity leave? It's common in all countries except two miserable countries Papua New Guinea and United States of America.

  8. mrmacross says:

    I think the bigger issue than loans is the cost of college education. How much are we spending on education, and how much are we earning as a result of our college degrees? Nobody wants to deal with the middleman who makes money on the loans, but the loans would be far more manageable (and possibly non-existent) if we didn't have to spend so much on tuition, books, housing, etc. in the first place.

    Also, in some cases, student loans are somewhat more manageable than other forms of debt. If I had $5000 in student loan debt (I wish it were that small), or $5000 in credit card debt (thank goodness I don't), I definitely pay the CC debt first. I do have a few options to put off repaying my student loan, or making the loan repayments smaller to give myself more flexibility, or even refinancing. Sure, it sucks that the interest keeps accumulating, but that's not something unique to student loans.

    Even if we got financial reforms, and had better deferment options, lower interest rates, bankruptcy options, protection from garnishment, etc., the fact is a $100,000 bill is still going to be a $100,000 bill. As someone who has a significantly large student debt, I do have a lot of misgivings and regrets, but chief among them is still that the original cost was so high. In short, I don't think it's as meaningful to point out the problem with student debt without first pointing out that the value of the degrees is in sharp decline. Education prices are going up way faster than general inflation.

  9. The Uber Successful says:

    What's good with that big ass nose

  10. tedmich says:

    Another great Clinton legacy…

  11. Sam Boyter says:

    Get a trade no student loans earn while you learn and at the end walk out with a guaranteed job with benefits in a industry starved of qualified people basically write your own checks

  12. xevious2501 says:

    Fannie Mae is just a companies name, never for get about the people who's actually to blame, those who were employed by the company, who ran it, those who were an extension of it, and all who profited from it, and make no mistake all those knowing full well their deeds, screwing millions of young adults over year after year generation after generation, ruining their futures all to benefit themselves financially. Never forget who those people are and were, YOU! thats rite.. YOU and or your neighbors. Not some evil entity in some other country, no YOU!, not the poor not those You make as the bad guy.. nope YOU!! Your neighbors, your 'fellow' "Americans", and all those in government city and state, in politics, and the 1% all knowing full well but all profiting the lions share from it. YOU who voted for these people that sold YOU and your children's future out for the "good-life".. Fannie Mae is just a name, real people made it happen, people conveniently hidden by the name Fannie Mae. Never forget to look at the big picture, because in order for things to truly improve, we need to shine the spotlight directly on those people responsible, and put their names addresses and futures on the line, as they did yours with no regrets.

  13. Colin says:

    Aww poor me, I can't do basic financial math so it can't possibly be my fault that I never made an effort to pay more than the minimum payment.

  14. David Hill says:

    Easy fixed , have rich parents

  15. Walter Copeland says:

    Hey! What can we do to get out from under the loans?!?!? Episode ended too damn quick!

  16. Shannon Harrison says:

    Just do a few years in the military and make the government pay for your college. Problem solved.

  17. Ripoff Scoots says:

    Sallie Mae a thot

  18. shane hall says:

    When I went to school and dealt with Sallie May,there was a high interest rate.

  19. KfC says:

    Defaulting on a loan means you took someone’s money, spent it and decided you don’t feel like paying it back. Don’t take out loans to go into a liberal arts major, you won’t have a job in the end.

  20. ReddoFreddo says:

    WAIT A MINUTE, I SMELL SOMETHING FISHY! How was the privatization of student loans a "compromise" between Bill Clinton and congressional republicans if the democrats had a super majority in both the house and the senate at the time? Also, literally every Republican voted against the act it was included in (Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993), so wasn't it a compromise between Bill Clinton and the Democrats rather than the Republicans? Maybe if he didn't include it the act would still be voted in, because the Republicans would've voted against it anyway?

  21. Withered Perception says:

    Paid off school and have the availably to retire at 33. Never taking loans again other than for credit scores! People really need to learn how money works!

  22. Ahnobi Ahnobitok says:

    This is so evil. Who proposed such a bill in 2005 and who signed for it? To destroy the futures of the youth like this, is next level.

  23. alex dixon says:

    at's a whole lotta pokemon go coins…

  24. James Correa says:

    This hits too close to home

  25. Maestrul Gamer says:

    Knowledge relly is power today.The problem is that everybody use the power to fight eachother in the economy for money!!

  26. jay quickblade says:

    Loans are similar to pain killers in a way they do help or in some cases are necessary to continue for some people but they are dangerous in the long run regardless of the situation (in fact i have seen a commenter who says that they go through so much pain no pain killers could stop it not even the placebo effect)

  27. Joey Garsone says:

    That pokemon go reference isn’t going to date this at all…

  28. Herve B says:

    And once again it was a Democrat (Clinton) compromise with Republicans that began this whole mess. Bipartisanship sucks.

  29. Troy Body says:

    I am studying credit counseling now. There are plenty of monies for the poor. If you, or parents make less than 20-50k you automatically qualify for FAFSA. If you carry a B average, you qualify for the state and university grants. There are scholarships available like from Wells Fargo, and You tube. Check out sites like and There are other scholarhip websites. There is the college work study program. You can get scholarship from churches. It may be a lot of little checks and time writing letters, but it will mean financial freedom in the future.

  30. Elwell Street says:

    I wonder 20-30 years ago, if there were fewer folks going into the fine arts. Fine arts are great; did getting loans more easily open up more diverse majors?

  31. Dannyel Ibanezalvarez says:

    This is entertainment and it’s like a school lesson just made fun..

  32. Robert Litsenberger says:

    Adam you are the worst kind of Regressive. Go to trade school… full stop.

  33. labmitch says:

    He tells only the side that attacks Conservatives but misses most of the problem. Worthless degrees and demands of people going into college

  34. Darth Craig says:

    23 years left for me…we need to re-educate our youth.

  35. Emma Walter says:

    I am writing a paper on this topic, could I get your sources?

  36. Thomas Green says:

    cough no private bank has given a student loan since the government took control of all student loans in 2010 cough

  37. Keyboard Dancers says:

    3:38 Some similarity to the new chinese social credit system…

  38. Life Scree says:

    haha, university costs roughly 3 grand where I'm from

  39. Darren Krock says:

    The US Government acted like a bank and lent money to any citizen with a pulse. This was immoral and un-Constitutional. As a result, 14% of the total American population now has crippling debt and their lives are frozen. No car. No mortgage. No apartment (you will have to live with family). No finding a spouse. No relationship. No sex life! Who wants to be with a broke ass?
    If the Fed does not bail out student loans soon, the US economy will collapse worse than the real estate market a decade ago. The entire educational and financial system is insane!! America is a seriously effed up country.

  40. Adrian Martinez says:

    Welcome to hell 😈

  41. TighelanderII says:

    Colleges in many states were essentially free until the Rich paid-off enough politicians to start cutting taxes in the late Seventies (Prop 13).

  42. Common Sense says:

    The fact that student loan forgiveness was unmentioned is very telling.

  43. whitemanwii says:

    so glad i never went to college…

  44. Robert Manders says:

    Getting degrees in modern dance and feminsit poetry while rackign up $50,000 debt is no fault of anybody but the students. Nobody forces anybody to go to college to study garbage, so don't blame banks or the governament when the loans come due.

  45. smokert5555 says:

    That and the idea the kids are choosing majors that will never earn them enough money to pay off the student loans.

  46. Fandalorian ! says:

    If the answer isnt government backed owns, this video is wrong

  47. Michael Gutierrez says:


  48. Todd M1979 says:

    You should do a video on how colleges took huge multi-million dollar subsidy checks from the government and, instead of using it to keep tuition low, they built stadiums, on-campus residences, started useless programs and classes, and boosted the salaries of admin personnel, and when the money ran out, they now had all this new crap to pay for and no subsidy left so they put the burden on the student’s wallets. The loans are not inherently evil, that which caused the need for such loans are.

  49. Ion Loghin says:

    My dentist(asian) who makes a butt load of money said he went to Mexico for cheaper college and then all he did was take a couple exams in the United States and became a dentist.

  50. Chris P. Bacon says:

    Also- 1980s change from feds providing funding directly to colleges, which inspired the creation of the William D. Ford Federal loan program that placed students in the middle of the former-1970s direct to college funding, which equated to that same funding going to colleges via the student middleman which ensured the feds would make money off-of college borrowers through "origination/distribution fees + other fees before the loan arrives at the school+ post loan interest(Source: Thelin; history of higher Education 2009). Evil—it's all about using students to make cash

  51. Kathleen M. Higgins says:

    Why would you want to screw young people and their parents like that? More depopulation??? I cannot figure it out. Maybe Bernie has a phenomenal idea. Asap – cancel and free all student loans within the first 6 months of his presidency, 2020

  52. J.C. Kersh says:

    To this day I will never regret going to community college. On my way to a second degree and I'm debt free! If I had gone to a university, I would probably be in debt way over my head and no job guarantee. Our education system needs to change!

  53. bryan gleisner says:

    You can go to a tech school for $6000 and make $70,000 a year as opposed to getting yourself into $100,000+ in debt to just make $50,000

  54. Dahn Shaulis says:

    Welcome to the College Meltdown!

  55. payday64 says:

    Here’s some advice work really hard at whatever job you have keep getting more jobs to improve your experience and climb your way up to management. It sounds a lot more harder but at least you won’t be in debt.

  56. bjxxx says:

    What he doesn't tell you is that people now in their 70's and above would routinely go through undergrad and then law or medical school. Then they'd get their license to practice and declare bankruptcy, even discharging their student loan debt back in the day. Very common practice.

  57. Mikhail Plata says:

    Sallie Mae can

  58. Brensen B says:

    Just wondering, do online colleges pull this string as well or are they free?

  59. Ashutosh Dwivedi says:

    This is why capitalism is bad.

  60. himura haibara says:

    So this is america's way to become advanced, by being loan shark. Do everything for money no matter how much people suffer because of it.

  61. Ry Ry says:

    I would go as far as to say government loans for school are terrible. Providing huge loans for jobs that won’t pay just keeps driving up the cost of them. Scholarships, pay cash or join the military. Maybe these colleges will finally stop wasting resources on degrees in gender studies.

  62. Jed Elias says:

    4:25 Adam: It's now nearly impossible to declare bankruptcy, on a federal student loan.
    Me: So you're telling me there's a chance? 😏

  63. Chakat Nightsparkle says:

    Its actually not worth it to go to College. Unless you plan on becoming a doctor or some other type of really important Job related. Scientist, Doctor, Teacher. Its just not worth going then. Yes You actually Might get paid a little more money with a College Degree, but its usually not that much overall, you would actually get paided more long term without one.

  64. Warren Mitchum says:

    You signed a piece of paper without reading or understanding it and you learned a lesson I hope. Plus if the number of ppl with degrees outpace the growth of jobs in that sector then what’s the point in going to college in the first place. Many ppl make lots of money without a degree.

  65. Laura Wagoner says:

    Ha my college kept my pell grant, still has them in the waiting to be paid column , now considered an overpayment which I’m responsible for paying too.. they signed me up for the worst loans first, check stubs say it’s pell grant not loans. Oh and I have 10 different mpns, using my social,

    This world is complete trash, great job old ppl..College is a scam, don’t go, if you wanna learn watch/read something.. it’s free.. I busted my ass putting myself through engineering school top of my class while I was a single mom and I worked full-time and I’m glad I did it but I don’t use any of my three degrees, majority of environmental engineering jobs involves killing innocent ppl and the planet for profit.. only way you’re gonna pay off your loans ..

  66. Pendragon Love says:

    My life story…my checks are garnished very two weeks…😢😢

  67. Mary says:

    Lol, Clinton and Republicans.

  68. Josiah Roach says:

    aaaaaaaaand community college it is

  69. Johnson Family Enterprises says:

    Sorry but thats your fault for taking out the loans

  70. Ben Morgan says:

    Just become an Eagle Scout and go into the air force for a little while and you’ll be good

  71. beth baxter says:

    In the UK, we don’t start paying it back until we reach a certain salary and then it gets cancelled when we reach our thirties 🇬🇧

  72. Skully Bats says:

    Jokes on Sally May, I never went to college

  73. TerminalCarrion says:

    Imagine that, a privatised government program focused on profit at the expense of consumers. It’s almost like capitalism is the act of profiting at the expense of others

  74. Ryan Listerman says:

    Blames free market on a government created system 😆

  75. Ryan Listerman says:

    Only government could create something like the education bubble.

  76. Scooty789 says:

    This makes me so glad I wasn't born in the us

  77. Evil Gary says:

    Advice to ALL high school kids today: tell colleges to shove those loans up their ass.

  78. Raj Singhania says:

    This person has been doing a great job.Keep up the good work Adam.

  79. DoctorX17 says:

    guess I got lucky… I've been able to defer payments on my loans when I didn't have a lot of money with zero interest, and my payments are based on my income, and they're reasonable amounts… and now I'm on track to have them paid off in a couple years

  80. K Channel says:

    I was shocked to learn how high tuition is in the US and I’m in Canada

  81. syed uzair says:

    Thanks for giving me a reason to not study in USA.

  82. Walter Clements says:


  83. Crank Case says:

    This is pretty much identical to the mortgage crisis of 2008. History will repeat itself; it is inevitable at this point. The moral of the story is that government backed loans, where the government assumes all risk, leads to a bubble that will eventually burst. Only minimal government funds should be available for college tuition (GI Bill, Pell Grants, etc); the rest needs to come from private banks.

  84. Jackie W says:

    My kids went to school overseas and have no college debt… they got better education and no debts… education in the usa is 27th worldwide. Colleges in USA are a business for profit education

  85. Pryexel 48 says:

    This makes me wonder on what America would've been like if they never put Sallie Mae into the free market.

  86. SunDaGamer_74 says:

    laughs in britis-
    Brexit: I'm going to stop you there

  87. Murad Thamir says:

    America is messed up.

  88. CJ Walton says:

    Smh…all true

  89. bennies fried chicken says:

    id love to see the behind scenes on this

  90. Kata214 says:

    I'm surprised Adam didn't mention the fact that Sallie Mae split most of it's fedral loan servicing into offshoot company Navient to essentially protect themselves. Glad I don't have loans with them but damn are they crooked.

  91. Kasuni Nelumika Mettananda says:

    woooh! I am blessed to be born in Sri Lanka, where education and health care is for FREE! 🙂
    We don't have to pay for school or University. Up to bachelors degree, it is free here.

  92. crimson_noir says:

    you can learning all of what you need to learn online.

  93. Kingブランドン says:

    I bet all my peers are in debt right now because their parents stopped paying for it…

  94. الدخس ؟ says:


  95. Sophia Mullard says:

    Haha, America is screwed! In Australia we have a system where once you have a high paying job they will slowly take small amounts of money!

  96. AndrewBrewer917 says:

    Government ruins everything; using government money for profit is not capitilism, that's cronny capitalism/state capitalism

  97. Alma Gonzalez says:

    What about an Adam and Hasan collab though…

  98. Rihard Saar says:

    Laoughs in country with free high education

  99. Redneck322 says:

    It’s really funny to see college students taking loans instead of getting a job before hand and saving a shitload of money beforehand to afford college. Also, the majors that are fake and not profitable, like gender studies or lesbian dance theory, will just land you with a job at McDonalds as a janitor.

  100. C R says:

    Colleges are businesses.

    Going to college was the worst thing I ever did.

    Unless you're becoming a professional or a school teacher….DO NOT TAKE OUT LOANS TO GO TO COLLEGE!!!!

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