housing crisisOh HI, 31.4% of homeowners that are underwater on their mortgages! Would you like to change your name to Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae, or perhaps even just “bank”? Because if not it is too bad and so sad for you, since the Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac regulator just said no WAY hozay to a plan that might actually help you, because of “freedom” and “personal responsibility.” And yes, Freddie Mac and Fannie maybe got hundreds of millions of dollars from the government in a no-strings-attached bailout, but that was DIFFERENT. Helping rich people and large institutions makes them better whereas helping homeowners and Poors just encourages irresponsibility, DUH.

Via Reuters:

The regulator for government-run housing finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac said on Tuesday that using taxpayer-funded bank bailout money could encourage defaults and not make a big improvement in reducing foreclosures in a cost-effective way for taxpayers.

“The anticipated benefits do not outweigh the costs and risks,” said the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s head Edward DeMarco, who has come under intense pressure from the government to agree to the plan.

… Geithner pointed out that DeMarco’s own data showed that the program would help nearly half a million homeowners and save taxpayers as much as $1 billion.

The housing regulator responded saying that figure only applied to a group of homeowners that had not made a mortgage payment in a year and would assume all those borrowers would win a mortgage write-down — a scenario deemed unlikely.

Rather, DeMarco’s analysis showed that the projected net benefit to taxpayers would be $500 million in the best case scenario and its experience has shown that the likelihood of successfully modifying mortgages was small.

See? It would only save $500 million dollars for taxpayers, but we could just as easily make that up by eradicating NPR, Planned Parenthood, and food stamps, so why even bother. And whose fault IS it that homeowners are underwater on their mortgages anyway? Is it the borrower’s fault, for listening to then-Chairman of the Fed Alan Greenspan, who assured borrowers that there was no housing bubble? Or is it the borrower’s fault, for falling for the deliberately misleading machinations of multibillion dollar financial institutions? It is, of course, the borrower’s fault, so they are on their own.


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  • RadioBowels

    August 1st, 2012 NEVER FORGET!!1!

  • Boojum
  • Won't someone please think of the Banks?
    -Edward DeMarco

  • ph7

    If you can't pay your mortgage, just drop your family off at the nearest swingset.

    • Just open a lemonade stand to pay the damn thing.

    • Look around for Steve King before you drive off!!

      • glasspusher

        I got that one.

    • Callyson

      I read that as "nearest swinger's party." Which is one way to come up with a mortgage payment, I guess…

  • Come here a minute

    Paul Krugman is very eloquent on this issue: "Fire Ed DeMarco"

    Alternatively, President Obama could try Joseph Stalin's methods for dealing with government officials who fall out of favor.

    • doloras

      One doesn't have to be as hardcore as Uncle Joe with the shootings and the forced confessions and the very cold gulags and such; one could simply adopt the methods of the latter, pussier Soviet Union, and just transfer such officials to be managers of hydroelectric plants in Upper Dumfuckistan.

      • Beowoof

        Oh so send them to a red state. Works for me.

      • Negropolis

        So, banish them to the Tennessee River valley or the Delta? Sounds like a plan.

        • HistoriCat

          I'm sure there's an isolated town in Alaska which could use some help.

    • sullivanst

      Alternatively, President Obama could try Joseph Stalin's methods for dealing with government officials who fall out of favor.

      Barack should be very afraid that DeMarco's gonna fuck up the economy and the election and hence the economy a lot more, and should totally stand his ground.

    • Fukui-sanYesOta

      ex-Mayor of London (and current candidate for Mayor), noted newt-fancier "Red" Ken Livingstone is getting shit for saying "hang a banker a week until the others improve"

      I can't fault him on it.

      • sharethegrief

        I read yesterday that Iraq had sentenced 4 bankers to death for embezzling over 2 billion. Some of the others involved got 25 years. I couldn't help but be a little wistful.

        • Fukui-sanYesOta

          It's a sad day when Iraq has the right idea and yet America and Britain don't.

      • sewollef

        I can't fault him on it.

        Agreed. When I was back in London, I voted for Ken Livingstone, campaigned for him and supported his positions. He was no friend of the Labour Party bosses who barely supported his candidacy, even though he was the official Party candidate.

        Ken spoke his mind and whilst that was an admittedly interesting place, the alternative to 'Red Ken' was a Tory bureaucrat appointee at the behest of that fucking neo-fascist Margaret Thatcher .

        Fortunately — but not in this instance — capital punishment is banned pretty much throughout the EU. Oh well.

    • Callyson


      Seriously, though, Paul Krugman kicks ass. Would love to see him replace that asshole Geithner in Obama's second term.

      • Come here a minute

        Sadly, Dr. K has stated that he's not a gubmint guy. Possibly Obama could make "an offer that he can't refuse"? Unlikely, tho.

  • Rather, DeMarco’s analysis showed that the projected net benefit to taxpayers would be $500 million in the best case scenario and its experience has shown that the likelihood of successfully modifying mortgages was small.

    Unless the Fed cracks down on the motherfucking mortgage lenders and forces them to do something nice that's not in their greedy-ass financial interest but will help society. So yeah — it's small.

  • Callyson

    Do tell, Paul Krugman, why should Obama fire this bastard?

    DeMarco’s basis for the rejection was that this forgiveness would represent a net loss to taxpayers, even if his agency came out ahead.
    That’s a very arguable point even on its own terms, because the paper he cited in support of his stance took no account of the positive effects on the economy of debt relief — even though those effects are the main reason for offering such relief. Since a reduction in debt burdens would strengthen the economy, this would mean greater revenue — and this might well offset any losses from the debt forgiveness itself.
    But there is simply no way that it makes sense for an agency director to use his position to block implementation of the president’s economic policy, not because it would hurt his agency’s operations, but simply because he disagrees with that policy.
    This guy needs to go.

    Yeah, what he said…

  • Buzz Feedback

    I paid for my house with Government Cheese.

    • el_donaldo

      I built mine out of Government Cheese. That's not a turf roof – that's mold.

      • OneYieldRegular

        You could have avoided that by applying a coat of Velveeta.

        • el_donaldo

          I considered coating the outside walls with crushed Cheetos and calling it stucco.

          • James Michael Curley

            If you want stucco, boy will you get stucco.

        • glasspusher

          Srsly. Nothing grows on velveeta. If it isn't good enough for mold, it isn't good enough for me, either.

          • If it doesn't require refrigeration, it's a no go.

            I participated in a focus group about 10yrs ago and they were testing something that looked like a Toaster Strudel, but with "cheese" in it. I asked if it would be in the freezer aisle or on a shelf. They said "shelf". I said that was a deal breaker. I imagine the people behind the one-way mirror were disappointed that a non-mouthbreather got in the sample audience.

          • glasspusher

            I hear in America, they got cheese in aerosol cans!They're just not getting through to you…

          • Negropolis

            On the other end, if you heat it and it doesn't melt or melts oddly, that's also a no-go as far as I'm concerned.

          • An_Outhouse

            I Can't Believe its Not Butter.

            I can.

    • Tundra Grifter

      Thank you, Keb Mo'.

      • Buzz Feedback

        Is he one of the Cosby kids?

  • coolhandnuke

    'I am outraged I tell you, outraged at these homes underwater. Where in God's good name will we put the swingsets and the dog-fighting pits if to protect our flooded homes from kidnappers, abortionites and rapers who want to take our stuff across state lines."
    –Rep. Steve King.

  • anniegetyerfun

    True story: my husband and I recently went to buy a home, we didn't want to raise BabyGetYourFun in our super-small, gross apartment in the city, and we did not qualify. I have good credit, hubby's credit is fair (he's been in the country for just under five years, and it takes time to build up awesome credit when you're an immigrant), and our combined incomes are almost embarrassingly high at the moment.

    The loan lady explained that my husband being a "furriner" was considered "a real red flag."

    • Boojum

      Annie, call a lawyer. Discrimination on the basis of alienage in contracts and purchase of real property violates 42 USC Sections 1981 and 1982. If you would like to talk, Becca can get us in touch.

      • anniegetyerfun

        Does that affect lenders? I was under the impression that banks didn't have to obey flimsy things like "laws".

        • Boojum

          Surprisingly, they sometimes have to. I would have to check to see if there is an exception somewhere, but I don't know of one off hand.

        • They had to give my 80-year-old mother a 30-year mortgage when she asked for one, without regard to the fact that she would have to live to 110 to pay it off. All because of one of those fancy anti-discrimination "laws."

          • BoatOfVelociraptors

            Well, bankers only need to look forward to their quarterlies.

      • emmelemm

        Agreed, that's some bullshit right there.

        That's skirting close to the level of stupidity of the Chick-Fil-A manager who told his female employee he fired her so she could go home and take care of her babies.

      • ritingon

        This. Pursue it.

    • Beowoof

      We just applied for and got a mortgage, we spent three weeks working with the bank who finally loaned us the money. They wanted to know everything about my financial life for the last three years, every asset that I might have an interest in, and they were so thorough in their inspection, I was expecting to have to give them colonoscopy results.

      Oh and yeah talk to a lawyer, that sounds discriminatory.

      • anniegetyerfun

        Yeah, to refinance my apartment, I had to provide copies of all the checks I had received for writing gigs outside of my regular work. I figured that a pap smear was next, but all of a sudden, the loan went through.The house, though, that was another story. I doubt that the lender would ever own up to admitting that she had said my husband's immigration status made it “suspicious”.

        • James Michael Curley

          Tweak the LTV (Loan to Value Ratio) with a sympathetic appraiser. You will need an appraisal in any event by the time you close and getting you own may add enough 'fair market value' so that you can get a nice 20% equity at closing. Ask a Realtor who specializes in representing buyer as opposed to the listing or multi-listing Realtor. Big money can be made when you shake off the idea that the listing Realtor is in any way interested in you. S/He isn't. When you present a mortgage application with a 20% or better equity (LTV of 80%) you can complete the application at 3:00pm and demand an answer by 10:am the next day. I've done it.

          • anniegetyerfun

            Actually, we had 20% down. The issue seemed to be a combo of the husband's green card (valid) and the fact that I am a contractor (rather than a "permanent" employee of a company).

            Anyway, what ended up happening is that my parents went to their hometown bank, where they have some sway, and bought the home and then out our names on the deed. We pay the mortgage, and there's apparently some financial weirdness we can go through in a few years (when hubby is a citizen) that will allow us to take full ownership of the house. But it did make us feel weird and dirty, not qualifying initially.

          • James Michael Curley

            There is an interesting play there that I don’t recall too well. Basically the parent then provides sole ownership to the property to the heirs in a living trust. I don’t recall all the specifics and there may be hang ups in the state where you live. Good to see something is working out for you and I still think you should consider a discrimination in lending action.

          • HistoriCat

            I think James Michael Curley is right – and even if you don't want to go the full lawyer route, see if there's a regulatory agency you can complain to about their actions. If someone else wants to push hard, having a file of other complaints about the offending party could help.

        • Boojum

          That's why we have lawyers and juries. And you would be surprised at what people admit.

          I had an HR Director deny that he TOLD my client that he preferred younger applicants because of their fresh, innovative ideas, but by the time we were through, he admitted that he thought the statement was true.

    • fartknocker

      Suggestion: find a better lender or move your money to a credit union. I just refinanced my house the credit union folks were helpful and was able to convert it to a 12 year loan.

    • C_R_Eature

      Fuck those people. Join a Credit Union. You won't be sorry.

      • anniegetyerfun

        I belong to a credit union. They were offering a rate of 6.5% at best.

        • C_R_Eature

          That's appalling. I see upthread that you & your parents worked it out, so congratulations! I'd still raise hell with that loan officer at your CU, though just on general principles.

          • anniegetyerfun

            Sorry, I didn't really explain myself right. My credit union offered lousy rates, so we didn't even really talk to them to begin with. The bank that we DID talk to (who told us we were suspicious) was the same bank that had refinanced my apartment. They offered great rates, and apparently racism. :)

    • Chichikovovich

      Well, the loan lady was both foolish and insensitive to talk about "red flag", but I get the sense that this is a standard thing that's done. When Chichikovna and I bought our first house, I had a secure tenure-track job at a university, Chichikovna [a US citizen] was not yet an MD but she was employed and had non-trivial investment income, both of us had good credit. So they punched the buttons and looked up the tables, and said: OK, with this profile, you'll need a 20% down payment, which we had.

      A few days later they got back in touch and said "sorry, we forgot to calculate in that you're a green card holder. Adding that to the situation it's 25%". [I had been in the US for 7 years, though 4 were on a student visa and 1 was on a "post-completion practical training" visa. Actually at that point I may have just had an H-1 employment visa, but I'm pretty sure I had been green carded.] I recall I was a bit dubious, and so they showed me the books, which described the various risk factors and un-risk factors and how they factored in to a down payment calculation. Sure enough, immigration status was explicitly covered.

      As it happens we could also make 25% with only a bit of hoop-jumping, but of course that could have been an insurmountable obstacle.

      In short, it may be illegal – I'm no expert on that – but if it is ruled illegal, I think it will force changes on most if not all lenders. It isn't just that your loan lady hates foreigners. It's just business, nothing personal.

      So if you went to court, you'd be picking a fight with more than just the local loan lady at the local bank, is what I'm saying.

      • anniegetyerfun

        Right, that's sort of what I figured. The thing that struck me as odd, though, is that my dad only became a US citizen a few years ago. He had lived up and down the West Coast, and purchased and sold several properties (the guy LOVES a goddamn project – his idea of relaxing is powerwashing the roof). So he was a greencard holder for something like 35 years? And it NEVER figured into this mortgage rates.

        • Chichikovovich

          Maybe they have different rules for business purchases and residential home-buyers, or something like that.—

  • YouBetcha

    Trickle Up Economics. Every time. Every fucking time.

  • CapnFatowls

    Just how much does a couple million of refrigerator boxes cost, anyway?

  • HarryButtle

    Between this and Steve King and that racist fucktard in Florida, I'm feelin' kinda shooty. I sure hope my weed guy's got some good news for me when I get home from work.

  • elviouslyqueer

    Ed DeMarco's petard? Your hoist is now available.

    Oh calm down, Sarah. I said P-E-T-A-R-D.

    • Boojum

      If it happens twice, he will be repetarded.

      • Geminisunmars

        If he takes up dance, he could be leotarded.

        • bobbert

          If he uses Intense Debate, he'll be p-tarded.

          • Boojum

            And if he likes bread, perhaps a bâtard?

  • Serolf_Divad

    Once again, "privatize the profits, socialize the…" aw, fuckit… when's the revolution, already?!

    • new_pic_for_NEWTer

      Couldn't agree more – sooner we get these motherfuckers up against the wall, the better off everyone will be!

  • kittensdontlie

    Time magazine puts it this way:

    DeMarco is either a courageous public servant, standing up for taxpayers in the face of unwarranted criticism, or a clueless bureaucrat blinkered by his irrational reverence for the sanctity of contracts.

    My money is on the latter choice.

    • MadBrahms

      Could he be a ballsy bureaucrat who knows exactly what he's doing and just doesn't care? Because I'm liking that as a third option.

      • Come here a minute

        They didn't offer the choice of Republican civil servant that hates his Kenyan Socialist boss?

        • kittensdontlie

          Like all Republitards, this ballsy bureaucrat cover hides another chance to tank the economy, so no more Nobama.

    • Exhausted66

      How does he feel about union contracts? Bet he wants those renegotiated.

  • Preferred Customer

    Ooh, wardrobe boxes. Have you priced one recently? Those are the "couple of Cadillacs" of box living.

    • anniegetyerfun

      As a matter of fact, I did! $7 a pop, but really worth the splurge.

  • Careful, Kris E.: keep using wordage like "cordially" and "bite him" at once and alert readers like Steve King may not get it.

  • barto

    Too big to nail.

  • This is why banks only like to lend money to people who don't need it.

  • Goonemeritus

    And whose fault IS it that homeowners are underwater on their mortgages anyway?”

    Personally I blame that loafer wearing putz Bob Vila.

    • From a small sample of Vila, 3 or 4 cable networks have been incubated.

      • Goonemeritus

        And every one of those channels is solely dedicated to convincing fucking morons who can’t hang a painting that they can rehab a brownstone in 3 months.

        • That's just what they tell their advertisers. Really their success is due to the fact that millions love to sit on their asses watching other people work and then criticize the outcome. It's the same principle that keeps fashion magazines afloat when the people pictured in them look nothing like the people reading them.

  • Monsieur_Grumpe

    Looks like my investment into a couple of cardboard boxes will finally pay off!

  • lefty74

    "Two Cadillacs in every garage" is a campaign slogan that just does not connect with the poors or middle class. Here in Missouri it looks more like ""Two junk cars in every yard."
    And they hate B O so much down here they are paying Sarah Palin to do ads for them. I hear banjo music. The run of the mill local here in these parts loves his guns and God who is of course Jebus, and they like their meth too. Views from the dustbowl are sad.

  • Dashboard Buddha

    OT: Job update

    Hi folks and thanks for the well wishes. No worries about losing my job due to Wonkette. It's not really possible to do anything but work at work (still getting my head around that one). I did want to share one point that your comp-u-heads might be interested in…

    Even though we are using windows, there are two legacy programs that have been ported to windows. Both are DOS based. One is from 1989 and the other is from 1980!! Because of memory concerns back in the day, we have to use extreme abbreviation. So much that at a few points I'm thinking, "Is that even English?!".


    • Ha, my job is so the opposite yours, in terms of getting in trouble; personal-use webbrowsing is technically forbidden, but since there's fuck-all to do in-between patients, it's implicitly understood that we're probably doing that, and if a patient complains, our manager sends out a perfunctory email and that's usually it.

      So, the only way I could possibly get in any real trouble is if, hypothetically, I spent all day posting on Wonkette, instead of doing my work, and at the same time was also super-rude to our asshole patients, who suck.

      • HistoriCat

        I spent all day posting on Wonkette, instead of doing my work, and at the same time was also super-rude to our asshole patients, who suck.

        Hey – I remember you!

    • Charlie_Foxtrot

      That's great, Buddha! Working sucks, but not as bad as starving.

      Here's a tech tip for you: Lotus 1-2-3 works better than Visicalc on DOS platforms. Are you running AT, XT or clone? Where in central Africa is your company located?

    • sudsmckenzie

      Been there, ported that, worn the t-shirt. You're only hope is a "smart phone" … *shudder* … and a good off network blocker connection. p.s. please tell me one of the programs doesn't say "CRT".

    • glasspusher

      1980 predates DOS and IBM PCs for crissake. What did it run on, apple II or PDP?

      • James Michael Curley

        By 1980 the number of Zilog80 based PC's running CP/M and DrDOS with ADM20 terminals far out numbered Apples and PDP's. Their failure to easily link with parallel printers which were so much faster than serial printers based on the TLX standard. A few months ago my wife was telling a young guy that I used to write 'print drivers' for $250 a pop and the kid was trying to edge closer to the door.

        • glasspusher

          DrDOS predated MS-DOS? Awesome. CP-M fer sher. Yeah, my first computer was a timex sinclair. Doing assembler on it (Zilog Z80) was a blast. My dad thought I was becoming anti-social. Guess he's still laughing now, somewhere.Ah, 16K of memory, and we liked it! Now I get to do the same tricks, only on embedded stuff. Atmega and such. Now my kid thinks I'm anti-social. What is it with these people?

          • James Michael Curley

            There was something out there, but I didn’t pay much attention to it. It was an OS that was an alternative to CP/M that had DOS in the name. I still have an old Altos, a couple CP/M machines (one by Morrow) and a couple Sinclairs (two ‘Timex and one real live Sinclair from GB). They are all in a storage room I haven’t been into in almost 10 years.Assembly had its merits but I found it tedious. I got into several varieties of Pascal because law firms were hot and hungry for data base programs and doing one with a dBase looking menu was like printing your own money. OOP killed me, but I probably could have survived.Of the ‘old stuff’ Visicalc was far superior to Lotus which was/is superior to Excel. The cream of the crop was Logicalc but it was never (as far as I know) ported to anything from CP/M. This is based solely on the variety predefined functions and, especially with Logicalc, being able to ‘paint’ columns and rows of data as do a quick, sophisticated statistical analysis on them. I don’t have to do any of that with Excel, but the complexity of doing it I now no longer waste time doing amusing statistical analysis. I would also prefer to use Lotus but it won’t run on Windows 7.

        • Haha!

          "Yes, dear. Mr. Curley used to tie a yellow onion to his belt and write print drivers. It was all the rage."

      • Dashboard Buddha

        Wang? IBM? An abacus? Thing is, if that program is so old, it must have been incredibly hard to fiddle with it so it could work in anything modern. Bear in mind, the system came from a series of banks that recently failed and were subsequently bought by my employer. Maybe that's why they failed?—

    • James Michael Curley

      I, among some of the legal stuff, oversee the IT in my very small office. The Old Bat's favorite does not like to use any word processor other than MSWORD 6.2. On top of that some fool in the past had loaded MS-DOS 5 on her computer. Because she has to access a Citrix Client which the provider will not upgrade to Windows 7, I have to run her MSDOS 5 infected HDD with MSWORD 6 (DOS) as Drive "D" under Vista. For four users I have to keep ahead of Three Widows OS', Four WP's, Three Spreadsheets Three email programs and WebMail.

      Believe me I'm not bragging, I'm laying down a palpable defense for when you see on the evening news; "Tragedy struck a small office in NJ today when …"

      • HistoriCat

        You have to be careful with old software – it could be more vulnerable to malware.

        I'm just saying … it would be a shame if some virus were to slip in and accidentally wipe out something.

        • James Michael Curley

          I know. But I have to contend with ‘The Old Bat’ who, when I installed a new HPLJ 1505, could not understand why it did not print in color like the new color inkjet she had J&R come out to her apartment and install. “But they’re both only a couple weeks old and when I printed it at home it was in color.”

          • HistoriCat

            Apparently it sounds more menacing if I can say it in a Joe Pesci voice.

          • James Michael Curley

            I’ll try that, but having grown up in NYC and the surrounding area, I use a Vinny Gambini variation.

    • BoatOfVelociraptors

      Uhm, fuckballs mcwhatshit? 95 isn't even supported. Jesus tittyfuck al bat Christ, how do you run a company on software written when I was in kindergarten!? Smarmy Bhudda in a rain hat, how do you live on the internets?

      • Whenever I'm building a new computer and look for new motherboards and see the ones that still have parallel and serial ports on them, I used to just assume they were for some obscure legacy industrial controller dongle thingy that someone still needed to use to run the HVAC system in their factory or something… Now I know they're for James Michael Curley.

      • BoatOfVelociraptors

        I have added to the global vocabulary.

        • emmelemm


      • emmelemm

        First of all, I don't disagree on any particular point. However, I have to say: Shut up, youngster (re the kindergarten crack).

        • HistoriCat

          Whack him with your cane!

  • chascates

    I think this game is rigged.

  • Ducksworthy

    Being continually ripped off the wall street and the banks is motivating me toward default, which appears to be what you do if you can't get a massive taxpayer financed bailout. Or even if you do, if you're one of the "with it" people.

  • BZ1

    and what's wrong with a cardboard box, didn't the poors make do in the Depression?

  • NorthStarSpanx

    Hmmm really the Fed? There we go again with Fanny and Freddy rearing their head looking to the taxpayer to bail-out. . .

  • WhatTheHeck

    Some years ago, a classmate of my son told him to “bite me.” My son, not fully grasping the meaning of “bite me,” did in fact, bite him.
    The Regulator, not fully grasping the situation at hand, needs a rattlesnake to bite him in the ass.

    • HarryButtle

      Rattlesnake bites are rarely fatal. Not that I'm hoping for anyone's death or anything, because that would be wrong. I'm just pointing out a scientific fact.

      • bobbert

        I think some intense pain and localized necrosis would do just fine.

        With scientific votes.

  • BigSkullF*ckingDog

    My house is so far underwater I had to install pressure relief valves.

    • Tundra Grifter

      Ya might want to rethink that screen door…

      • Negropolis

        Polack libel!

        • BoatOfVelociraptors

          Blonde polack libel!

          • Negropolis

            Blonde polack dead baby libel!

    • glasspusher

      Isn't that marine observatory in The Keys losing its funding at the end of the month and shutting down? Wish they'd make up their minds.

  • zippy_w_pinhead

    but what does any of this have to do with Chick-Fil-A?

  • sudsmckenzie

    Too bad Hopey doesn't like to fire people.

    • BarackMyWorld

      One area where he needs to be more like Mittens.

  • Needz moar tax cuts for the Romney clan.

  • BigSkullF*ckingDog

    I can see the Titanic from my house.

    • bobbert

      I can see what you did there from my house.

    • glasspusher


  • BlueStateLibel

    “Liquidate labor, liquidate stocks, liquidate the farmers, liquidate real estate.” – Andrew Mellon, advising Herbert Hoover. This is where we're heading, no? Also, is the DA on Rep. King yet? Tell us where the swing set is, Steve, and we'll let you go home.

  • MadBrahms

    If any of you have any money left, I recommend investing in corrugated aluminum, particle board, and hobo beans.

  • Rotundo_

    One other of the cheerleaders of the housing bubble that deserves mention along with Greenspan and the merry crew are all of those great folks in the business news field (CNBC with Jim "Your house will appreciate in value wildly beyond the rate of inflation for all eternity Cramer, and all those other folks that told you that stocks were a solid place to park your 401K funds, 'cause the DJIA will appreciate wildly beyond the rate of inflation for all eternity etc. ad nauseum). Next time remember to give those swell folks a hearty salute as well for their part in herding in the lambs to be slaughtered.

  • NYNYNYjr

    Harry Reid today: "We feel comfortable in the Senate," he said. "Where the problem is, is this: Because of the Citizens United decision, Karl Rove and the Republicans are looking forward to a breakfast the day after the election. They are going to assemble 17 angry old white men for breakfast, some of them will slobber in their food, some will have scrambled eggs, some will have oatmeal, their teeth are gone. But these 17 angry old white men will say, 'Hey, we just bought America. Wasn't so bad. We still have a whole lot of money left.'"

    • An_Outhouse

      Harry's been on fire lately, and I thought Mormons don't drink!

      • emmelemm

        Maybe someone slipped him a little caffeine when he wasn't looking.

  • Soylent Green

    Well then. NOW I have good reason to strategically default. Eyes too sad to be snarky.

  • CivicHoliday

    I blame the gayz

  • Monsieur_Grumpe

    We're going to need a store to cater to the revolting masses caused by Freddie Mac's insolence.
    As soon I find some investors I'll be opening

    Pitchforks, Pikes and Pepper Spray R Us.

    Coming Soon!

    • Barrelhse

      Pitchfork? check.
      Pike? check.
      Pepper Spray? check.

    • Negropolis

      There is already a store that caters to the "revolting masses" caused by Freddie Mac's insolence. It's called WalMart and they have pitchforks, pikes, pepper spray and firearms up the wazoo.

  • Tundra Grifter

    "Rather, DeMarco’s analysis showed that the projected net benefit to taxpayers would be $500 million in the best case scenario and its experience has shown that the likelihood of successfully modifying mortgages was small."

    That's because no loan modification program to date has actually addressed the problem – the people living there owe more than the sucker is worth.

    The classic scenario is to have a default, the previous owners move out, the lender takes a loss, and the new buyer comes in and purchases it at market. Woefully inefficient, with extra costs and fees all over the place.

    Cram down the mortgage to market value and that's that. No muss, no fuss.

    However, the lenders get all hung up in the morality of it. If they want to screw you, of course, it's open season. But when things go the other way, well – "moral hazard" suddenly becomes everything.

  • Antispandex

    "It would only save $500 million dollars for taxpayers, but we could just as easily make that up by eradicating NPR, Planned Parenthood, and food stamps…"

    Well, it's a matter of priorities. Either you want to be sure Bristol Palin has enough after- tax cash to aford her next mistake, or you don't. Don't even get me started on how tragic it would be to see hard working job creators like Paris Hilton forced into tax shelters, just to survive. Tough decisions like this have to be balanced in congress all the time, and it is a thankless job let me tell you.

  • veence69

    Is it "pyke", or "pike".. I feel like I should have this information.

  • aux armes citoyens!

    • James Michael Curley

      aux armes renault for those who can't afford citoyens

  • BarackMyWorld

    Weren't most of the defaults when the crisis hit from people who refinanced and were only underwater because someone told them they could cash in on their home equity by refinancing with no risk?

    • BigSkullF*ckingDog

      No, those aren't the only people.

      • BarackMyWorld

        I was a little confused.
        Here is what I was thinking of:
        "What tended to be forgotten, though, was that most subprime mortgages did not go toward the purchase of a new house, but rather were refinancings by existing homeowners. (According to a joint HUD–Treasury report, a staggering 82 percent of subprime mortgages were refinancings, and in nearly 60 percent of those cases the borrower pulled out cash, adding to his debt burden.)"
        -from chapter 2 of All the Devils Are Here

        • BigSkullF*ckingDog

          Guess I slightly misread your original statement. When the crisis first hit that was probably the case. But I also don't think its a helpful argument anymore, when five years into the crisis, at least in my neighborhood, anyone who bought between 2001-early 2009 has now seen all of their equity vanish and are lucky to not be in the hole for tens of thousands more, even with a conventional 20% down loan. According to Zillow, my house is today worth what it sold for in 1999. A loan write-down today would make me much less likely to default in the future. Honestly, I have kicked the idea of a strategic default around and would definitly stop paying my mortgage the minute there was a wiff of a layoff at work or any other sort of major financial trouble. Just tired of having this worthless debt dragging me down and tired of people buying into the notion that it is somehow "honorable" to pay your debts no matter what, when its okay for businesses to do fuck-all and that's just good business. Sorry for the rant. I'll shut up now.

  • mosjef

    DeMarco: you can stick Freddie Mac where your Fannie Mae hurt. Love getting lectures on fiscal responsibility from Frannie. It's like taking etiquette lessons from Fred Willard.

  • not that Dewey

    OT: CALLING ALL NEW MEXICO WONKETTEERS (and anyone else who has the time and/or inclination)

    Congressman Steve Pearce, along with all other Republican House members and 19 "democrats", just voted against tax cuts for middle- and lower-class Americans. Please bombard him with emails. Use zip codes 87801, 87901, 88006, and 88061.


  • "Geithner pointed out that DeMarco’s own data showed that the program would help nearly half a million homeowners and save taxpayers as much as $1 billion."

    I think the big news is that Geithner actually does know we're out here. I always wondered.

    • HobbesEvilTwin

      Yes, but I was totally against this douche DeMarco until I read that Timmy might disagree with him. FWIW, I've been thinking lately that my and Timmy's interests are not necessarily aligned. (since I don't work for the Goldman Sachs)

  • Someone in the White House should remind DeMarco that he serves as acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency due to a presidential appointment. I have never been Rahm Emanuel's biggest fan but he would be useful in this case.

    • Negropolis

      Well, I hear DeMarco only takes baths, so he should be safe from the wrath of naked Rahm.

    • Callyson

      About that–WaPo was useful for once:

      The FHFA statute provides that the FHFA Director is only removable “for cause”. 12 U.S. Code sec. 4512. That sort of provision usually means that the President can only remove the officer for malfeasance or misconduct, not just a policy disagreement. (See In re Humphrey’s Executor.).
      DeMarco, however, is an Acting Director…This means he can be removed at any time simply by the Presidential appointment of a Director. That would require Senate confirmation (not happening before 2013 under political realities and the ridiculous Strom Thurmond rule) or a recess appointment (possible). Given the way Obama has interpreted the recess appointment power for the CFPB Director and NLRB appointments earlier this year, the ability to do a recess appointment means he can replace DeMarco pretty much whenever he wants.

      Come on, Mr President, this is one time when a Romney – esque attitude about firing people would serve the greater good…

  • Biel_ze_Bubba

    "The housing regulator responded saying that figure only applied to a group of homeowners that had not made a mortgage payment in a year and would assume all those borrowers would win a mortgage write-down — a scenario deemed unlikely."

    And what, other than your own fucking intransigence, would make it "unlikely"? That's a dickish move straight out of the GOPtard playbook.

  • Callyson

    Is Edward DeMarco even worse than the big banks? Is that humanly possible, Wikipedia?

    While DeMarco stands by, the 5 largest private banks are already agreeing to provide principal reduction to homeowners under the 50 state Attorney Generals' Settlement.


  • ttommyunger

    "Regulator"? That's what cattle barons called the hired assassins they brought in from time to time to kill off rustlers. The English Language is so quaint.

  • Negropolis

    He may regret making such a delicious invitation in the era of "Eat the Rich" and the coming zombie apocalypse. Jus' sayin'….

    BTW, I want conservatives to STFU, now, about Freddie and Fannie being in the pocket of this president, okay?

    I hear Occupy's sharping up the guillotines. I can hear them purring on Zuccotti as I type…

    • RadioBowels

      I just heard an interesting exchange on the C-Span. Jeff Zaintz (who, BTW, made a chunk of change off my back — long story) the Director of the WH OMB was just cold fiery in his defense of the Prez's plan to not give the tax break to the 2%. He was flat out adamant with the teabaggers that this is the way to balance the budget. Put me to bed fucking in shock.
      Stand your ground Barry.

  • Since it has been established that lying is okie dokie to you republicans and democrats and oppressing people is just peachy to you republicans and democrats then what is your problem with the prez? You have shown you are just like him, the only thing that matters to you is your team wins.
    vote third party

  • aussiefromafar

    Banks all around the world, and Australia is no exception are the scabs left on your butt after you pick at ingrown hairs. Yeah it aint pretty.

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