So here we are, feeling like we want to scream out the window and yell “I’m mad as h*ll and I’m not gonna take it anymore’ like Howard Beale in the movie ‘Network’. Many are a bit stunned. Could this really happen so quickly, almost overnight? No, it did not happen overnight. We just have not been listening/reading the signs nor have we bugged the cootie out of our Reps. Until now. Now we are ringing their phones, emailing, writing. We are frightened. We are Mad as H*ll!
What will happen? What did happen? How did we get to this place? What does it mean for our families? These are the questions we are asking. Does anyone in Government believe truly that this will fix the problem? Yes and no. No one really knows the answer to that one. Read the excerpts below and the links to see how we got here. In addition, read the links in blue that are within the post.
Hey, when you are calling your reps, if there is something objectionable that you think is ridiculous for us to have to pay for..let em know would ya? There really are some doozies in there. It’s got quite a bit of self interest with a lot of pork thrown in that has nothing to do with housing. Check it out. Get sick and tired enough to reenergize to scream at the buffoons we elected to keep watch. Tell em you want to be looked out for in the payback! Does it not make you wish you had lived just a tad above your means…just saying.. Some of us now feel foolish for clipping coupons and trying to save. I should have had a V8! A V8 engine that is. Don’t let em off the hook..no recordings. no closed until further notice. Take no prisoners!
Now, we must account for decisions made long ago. The dream was an America where every person could borrow enough money to buy a home. The Community Reinvestment Act, signed by President Carter and strengthened by Bill Clinton, encouraged bankers to loosen underwriting standards to “meet community needs.” Communities, of course, were not the ones obliged to pay the loans back.
As one former banker recently shared, “It is easy to recall sitting around bank board meetings in the last decade where it became a badge of honor for bankers to give loans to those who could not afford them. From that came lesser rates, larger loans and chicanery galore.” With this came the perverse incentives of sub-prime lending: loans without down payments, loans without equity, loans without verification of income or assets. New lenders like Countrywide lent money without tempering the risk with savings deposits.
It worked, as long as the value of the underlying asset, the American home, kept increasing: If a homeowner couldn’t pay the mortgage, he could sell the home for a profit. In 1997, Bear Stearns started securitizing these poisoned loans, packaging and reselling the tainted candy in large, Wall Street-sized containers. More Wall Street money chased risky loans and more speculative borrowers chased easy money. You would have thought they would have learned a lesson here. NOT!
When government regulation creates perverse incentives that disrupt the normal workings of an economy, it finds itself obligated to create equally perverse disincentives and regulations to limit the side effects of their good intentions. Government intervention attempts to repair its disruptions with even more regulation, an endless hall of mirrors from which policymakers can find no exit. Now we find ourselves socializing capital markets. GOODBYE AMERICA…HELLO RUSSIA, CHINA.. HEY BROTHER..ER COMRADE, WILL YOU LEND ME A DIME ?
They are all to blame, Republican and Democrats alike, however:
On Section D of this bill proves that the Democrats in Congress have learned nothing from this financial collapse. They still want to game the market to pick winners and losers by funding programs for unqualified and marginally-qualified borrowers to buy houses they may not be able to afford — and that’s the innocent explanation for this clause.
The real purpose of section D is to send more funds to La Raza and ACORN through housing welfare, via the slush fund of the HTF. They want to float their political efforts on behalf of Democrats with public money, which was always the purpose behind the HTF. They did the same thing in April in the first bailout bill, setting aside $100 million in “counseling” that went in large part to ACORN and La Raza, and at least in the former case, providing taxpayer funding for a group facing criminal charges in more than a dozen states for fraud. Gee is it anything like the money Obama got for that field of Unfulfilled dreams that suddenly went astray to others? That kind of fraud? Some just can’t handle other people’s money. Taxpayers money seems free to all!
One of the biggest likely beneficiaries, despite some Republican objections: Acorn, a housing advocacy group that also helps lead ambitious voter-registration efforts benefiting Democrats.
Acorn — made up of several legally distinct groups under that name — has become an important player in the Democrats’ effort to win the White House. Its voter mobilization arm is co-managing a $15.9 million campaign with the group Project Vote to register 1.2 million low-income Hispanics and African-Americans, who are among those most likely to vote Democratic. Technically nonpartisan, the effort is one of the largest such voter-registration drives on record. THIS IS KIND OF LIKE I NOT ONLY HAVE TO PAY FOR A HOUSE I AM NOT LIVING IN NOR INVITED TO BUT NOW I GOTTA PAY TO HELP SOMEBODY I DON’T CHOOSE TO VOTE FOR GET ELECTED!
It’s bad enough that taxpayers have to pay the price for Congress’ decade-long distortions of the lending and investment markets. If we realize a profit from the bailout, that money should go to pay down the debt or get returned to taxpayers as dividends from their investment — not to organizations committing voter fraud, and not to restarting the entire cycle of government meddling in lending markets. I’d support a rational bailout package, but anything that funds the HTF needs to get stopped. AMEN TO THAT!
The Wall Street Journal reported on the HTF/ACORN/Democratic connections in July:
The housing bill signed Wednesday by President George W. Bush will provide a stream of billions of dollars for distressed homeowners and communities and the nonprofit groups that serve them.
Again, One of the biggest likely beneficiaries, despite Republican objections: Acorn, a housing advocacy group that also helps lead ambitious voter-registration efforts benefiting Democrats. … YOU ARE NOT PREJUDICED IN ANY WAY ARE YOU?
Partly because of the role of Acorn and other housing advocacy groups, the White House and its allies in Congress resisted Democrats’ plans to include money for a new affordable-housing trust fund and $4 billion in grants to restore housing in devastated neighborhoods. In the end, the money stayed in the bill; the White House saw little choice. LIKE WE CAN AFFORD THAT NOW ON TOP OF THE BAILOUT! lots more ridiculous things that have been included that are too lengthy for this post. Another day..perhaps?
The delay this week, why it did not get passed Thursday or Friday.
What most riles Republicans about the bill is the symbiotic relationship between the Democratic Party and the housing advocacy groups, of which Acorn is among the biggest. Groups such as the National Council of La Raza and the National Urban League also lobby to secure government-funded services for their members and seek to move them to the voting booth. Acorn has been singled out for criticism because of its reach, its endorsements of Democrats, and past flaws in its bookkeeping and voter-registration efforts that its detractors in Congress have seized upon. GOOD GRIEF, WHAT IS FAIR ABOUT THAT? ME PAY FOR YOU TO GET ELECTED?
Now that we’re here, what do we do? I am massively conflicted about this bailout program. The idea of government stepping in to bail out international banks that were reckless with their own business literally makes my stomach churn. We are privatizing gains and socializing losses.
While it took the people in power far too long to recognize it, they are now understanding the same sad truth. This bailout plan is not a good idea — it’s an absolutely terrible idea. It’s just the only idea we are hearing about. Some Republicans are suggesting loans versus buying this debt. Who will win? What compromises will they make? I say let it ride out and the American people will rise again just like our grandparents did in the Great Depression. To this, I know the potential job loss, the pain and suffering. No credit. No help from other countries either, Strange how we helped many Nations in their time of need. But don’t hold your breath!
It could be a disaster of the likes we have never seen but these are my instincts.
Our financial system is like a 747 flying around with all four of our engines on fire. The bailout effort will not stop us from landing hard, but without it, we may simply drop out of the sky. iReport.com: Will a bailout save us?
What Congress is attempting is a last-second search for an open field to land this plane with as little damage as possible. With that in mind, I think some kind of action may be a necessary evil, but we must be very, very careful.
Action for the sake of action, much like change for the sake of change, doesn’t solve problems. It usually inflames them. And what’s worse is that it creates brand-new catastrophes we haven’t even considered yet. Wall Street and Congress have been playing with fire, and now it’s Main Street that’s beginning to sweat.
Once again, the Democrats want to set up a self-funding mechanism, this time by exploiting a severe financial crisis. Despicable.
When it is all said and done, I as many other Americans just want someone to stand up for them, for the man and woman that goes to work every day, pays their taxes, gives to church and/or charity. Tries to raise their children decently. Send them to school and save for college. That Man and woman’s dreams usually take a backseat to the welfare of their children. They do without to save for their education and welfare. Can we expect less from our Political leaders..in that we sent them there to look out after our interests. We don’t want your blame game on each other nor your posturing. We want you to do your job! That means we want our interests over Wall Street..our interests over the pork added into the bill. Our interest, GOT IT?
Road Sassy has a lot of the real story at her site:She is an excellent writer and takes no prisoners. She will call it as she sees it.