Paul L. Caron

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Students Urged to Sell Kidneys to Repay Student Loans

Kidney The Scotsman, Debt-Hit Students Urged to Sell Their Kidneys:

Students should be able to sell their kidneys for tens of thousands of pounds to pay off university debts, according to a Scots academic. Sue Rabbitt Roff believes making it legal to sell the body part would boost the number of organs available to save lives and help students struggling with money. She argues that donors should be paid the average UK annual income of around £28,000. ...

The Dundee University academic makes the controversial comments in an article in the British Medical Journal today. Mrs Roff, senior research fellow at the university's Department of Medical Sociology, told The Scotsman: "We are allowing young people to undertake £20,000 to £30,000 of university fee payments. "We allow them to burden themselves with these debts. Why can't we allow them to do a very kind and generous thing but also meet their own needs?"

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In reply to pawn: Your words are prophetic. if the kids do this they ARE in effect donating their kidneys to benefit left-wing academics. We need a re-play of the French Revolution in which the elites are completely overthrown. After a few more years the people will realize who the elites really are and go after them like the Jacobins did the royals and the priests. Our priests ans priestesses write for academic journals. Our courtiers work in the mainstream media.

Posted by: teapartydoc | Aug 6, 2011 6:10:26 AM

This will only get support if the lefties can donate someone elses kidney for their own good.

Posted by: pawn | Aug 6, 2011 4:49:11 AM

"Ouch. Whatever happened to just getting a job? Or working your way through school in the first place?"

You know of any job that pays around $50k a year part time? It must have been nice back in the 80's to work a part time job and put yourself through school, but tuition costs have risen just a little bit in the past two decades. I'm sure most students these days would love to "work their way through school" but that is sadly no longer a possibility.

Posted by: JC | Aug 6, 2011 12:36:11 AM

If the supply of kidneys rises prices will drop. Which of course means I am the tiresome commenter who doesn't realize its just a joke. It is right?

Posted by: xyz | Aug 5, 2011 8:45:01 PM

Professor Roff is apparently untroubled by the idea of asking the people who pay her salary to sell off their body parts to finance her lifestyle.

Posted by: Rob Ramcharan | Aug 5, 2011 4:53:57 PM

At least school would not cost an arm and a leg.

Posted by: Andrew_M_Garland | Aug 5, 2011 4:42:42 PM

Actually, selling the kidney instead of taking out that government loan may just be the better deal:

Note that Scottish students will not have to sell kidneys, only English Students will, as they have to pay fees whilst Scottish students do not (all financed with taxes mainly collected in England).

Posted by: RightwingHippyChick | Aug 5, 2011 3:47:01 PM

Here's an alternate suggestion. Insure one student for the debts of 10. Then they spin a wheel and one student is chosen for summary execution; the other 9 get their debts paid off. It not only pays the debts for 9 kids, it ensures a tighter labor market. A win-win especially compared to the alternative, controlling education costs and administrative bloat.

Posted by: Mike G | Aug 5, 2011 2:32:48 PM

And why not? Not only do we see students out of debt, we also save lives.

Posted by: Pat | Aug 5, 2011 1:05:02 PM

So does one have to sell one's own kidney, or can one sell any old kidney that can be obtained with a minimum of fuss and bother, preferably from somebody who won't know who one is?

Posted by: mikee | Aug 5, 2011 11:09:45 AM

Why can't these professors take a pay cut? Pension cut? Guess it's more reasonable for kids to sell their kidneys.

Posted by: Some Guy | Aug 5, 2011 11:05:05 AM

This all started at Organ State.

Posted by: Dino | Aug 5, 2011 10:55:05 AM

>Why can't we allow them to do a very kind and generous thing but also meet their own needs?"

Because once money enters the transaction, many (third party observers) no longer consider the donation to be a kind and generous thing (or even voluntary) anymore. It is the third party observers whose opinions on the matter count the most.

Posted by: GFH | Aug 5, 2011 10:53:45 AM

I have a friend who gave both his kidneys in service to this country. Gun shot wounds and rapid blood loss tend to do that. He's in college now (on the GI Bill courtesy of his kidneys) but would go back in a second if he were allowed.

Posted by: Legion | Aug 5, 2011 10:33:39 AM

@phil and @roadgeek, What in the heck does slavery/indentured servitude and committing suicide (selling two kidneys) have to do with selling a kidney to help others and yourself in a voluntary (please notice this word slavery accusers "VOLUNTARY!") transaction. Do you not know the difference between a voluntary transaction and slavery? Do you also know that a best friend of mine is dying an almost slow certain death and living a miserable life on every other day dialysis while you sit in your comfortable house being smugly morally superior while typing such nonsense on your computer. Tens of thousand in this country die every year as a result of their being no free market in body parts. Millions more dye every year world wide. You really ought to question your own morality that lets so many people die unnecessary deaths every year. I suggest you read kidney donor Virginia Postrel on the issue. You also should question your presumed straw arguments of the supposed evils of allowing human beings to pay for the right to live. Having a market would of course also free up lots of voluntary donors for those with less means. Instead of getting on your moral high horse you then instead of arguing for my friends almost certain death while she waits you could donate to or voluntarily raise money for a charity to help those that could not afford donors.

Your moral preening and your distrust of morally neutral free markets makes me sick to my stomach.

Posted by: Tom of the Missouri | Aug 5, 2011 10:07:38 AM

...and then, we can start eating Irish children.

Posted by: Dietrich | Aug 5, 2011 9:53:02 AM

Brilliant! But why students? We should make the millionaires, billionaires, jet owners, and oil magnats donate a kidney as part of their fair share. Either that or we have to push granny off the cliff.

Posted by: tsj | Aug 5, 2011 9:49:08 AM

That's okay - the student debt eating academics have long since sold their little black souls and prostituted their consciences.

Posted by: sca721 | Aug 5, 2011 9:47:20 AM

Since the money that was borrowed to finance mainly social spending was done with the intention of paying off existing debt by issuing more debt, the effect of this approach is that the debt will never be paid off. In other words, not only is the debt perpetual, but so is the ever-increasing interest on that debt. This is a fact of life and of mathematics.

While there are only three ways out, only one of them is honorable: inflate, default or payoff. Payoff can come out of current income, by reduction in expenditures, or by disposing of assets. Selling body parts is a form of asset sale, but it appropriately connects the debt with the perpetual work to service it.

In the west, we have placed ourselves and those who follow us (our children and their children) in a form of perpetual debt servitude to service this debt. The Left (er, now "progressive") who love to scold the rest of us about "sustainability" were the primary advocates of a government borrow and spend plan whose only sustainable feature is the servitude it leaves all of in. Not only will future generations not be able to afford to continue this level of social spending, they will not even be able to service the debt we leave behind.

We are thus forcing some future generation to take the dishonorable option in dealing with the debt. They will either have to inflate it away or walk away from it entirely. In either case, the people they induced to buy the debt will be left at a loss.

This is yet one more immoral fruit from the immoral scheme of socialism, a scheme that seduces us into thinking that we can live at the expense of others. In the end, we cannot and must not. Maybe a future generation will rediscover the value of honor.

Posted by: theBuckWheat | Aug 5, 2011 9:45:30 AM

"Kidneys evidently are valued higher than brains."
You can live without a brain. I have proof--most of the Senate, and large parts of the House.

Posted by: Jim,MtnViewCA,USA | Aug 5, 2011 9:23:54 AM

If I plan to use my Military G.I. Bill to pay for college, does that mean I'm risking my whole body for college, kidneys and all?

Posted by: Bull | Aug 5, 2011 9:18:48 AM

Notice the mouth-breathing statist isn't just content with advocating having her minions --students -- sell their organs to pay her salary, but she wants to fix the price as well!

And just what exactly is Medical Sociology?

Posted by: T Gunther | Aug 5, 2011 9:12:36 AM

Considering how much beer the average student consumes, those kidneys may not have a lot of mileage left...

Posted by: jt | Aug 5, 2011 8:41:01 AM

Why don't they just sell themselves into a term of indentured servitude? The federal deficit will have them tied up working to pay off government debt until, oh, June or so. But they'll have the rest of the year to work. We could have regulations covering things like how much straw their owners have to put in their bedding, and the ratio of oats to water in the gruel. It could work.

Posted by: ChurchSox | Aug 5, 2011 8:24:09 AM

Just think - if they sold two kidneys, they could pay off twice as much! Or maybe they could become slaves for 20 years. We have to be creative to think of ways to pay for the stunningly bloated price of an education. Any alternative to reducing the cost of the education in question and actually making it affordable.

Posted by: Phil | Aug 5, 2011 8:18:21 AM

And why not? It's my kidney; why am I prohibited from selling it to the highest bidder? I'm thinking I could get about $175,000 for a kidney any day of the week, if it was allowed. I could do a lot with $175,000. I further suspect that there are a lot of people in the United States who would pay for a good kidney. Why are they prevented from negotiating a purchase with me?

Questions of dubious morality are exacerbating the shortage of organs in this country.

Posted by: roadgeek | Aug 5, 2011 8:15:17 AM

>>you cannot however transplant brains. Yet.

And have you ever been out drinking beer, and tried to go to the bathroom and been standing there in front of the urinal trying to have a think? It just doesn't provide the same sense of well being that using your kidneys would under the same circumstances.

Posted by: Joe Blow | Aug 5, 2011 8:08:52 AM

Coming to an American college/university near you!

Posted by: LTC John | Aug 5, 2011 8:08:00 AM

How about lowering the cost of the "education" mafia that, like the government, assumes it's got the right to raise costs automatically and continuously simply because they can.

Posted by: koblog | Aug 5, 2011 8:03:50 AM

Came over from Althouse. Was sure this had to be The Onion. Amazing how an academic values education.

Posted by: chuckR | Aug 5, 2011 7:58:40 AM

you cannot however transplant brains. Yet.

Posted by: MikeinAppalachia | Aug 5, 2011 6:56:08 AM

I suppose a pay cut for "Scots academics" would be entirely out of the question, though.

Posted by: edh | Aug 5, 2011 6:53:31 AM

Ouch. Whatever happened to just getting a job? Or working your way through school in the first place?

Posted by: American Delight | Aug 5, 2011 1:14:02 AM

Kidneys evidently are valued higher than brains. Go figure.

Posted by: Jake | Aug 4, 2011 3:58:22 PM