30 Issues: Fixing the Economy

Monday, October 13, 2008

Austan Goolsbee, professor of economics at the University of Chicago graduate school of business and economic advisor to Barack Obama, discusses Barack Obama's response to the economic crisis and what new regulations are needed.

Peter Wallison , Arthur F. Burns Fellow in Financial Policy Studies at the American Enterprise Institute, discusses the crisis and Sen. McCain’s views.

Amy Resnick, editor in chief of the Bond Buyer, talks about the latest actions to try to right the economy and the latest from the bond market.

Kevin Cummings, president and CEO of Investors Savings Bank, offers a banker’s view.


Kevin Cummings, Austan Goolsbee, Amy Resnick and Peter Wallison

Comments [63]

GusW from Rockland County

Wallison HANDLED Brian who was unable to remember the ways deregulation got our economy into this shape, claiming deregulation had nothing to do with this crisis! Brian tried to bring up Gramm, but Wallison was ready with a deflection.

Brian, what about the decades of union-busting, the harmful trade deals and the blatant overconsolidation of media?? Lobbyists rewriting Medicare bills, FDA rules and the Abramoff web? All dereg problems, but the granddaddy was the vacuum of military-industrial oversight, ignoring Ike's 1961 warning of vigilance over war profiteers...

Oct. 13 2008 10:27 PM
Salim H. from Patterson, NJ

By forcing banks to stop "redlining", i.e. to start making loans to shoddy subrime borrowers, Jimmy Carter and other lefty Dems brought the financial crisis upon this country

may allah help-us....

Oct. 13 2008 05:49 PM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Eva--too busy to reply just now--but I'm not saying thyroid is at the root of all problems. Just using it as an example of how I came to realize that what I do and even what I feel and How I Think is controlled to a greater extent than I ever realized by--gulp!--my body! That the "I" part of me was subject to the variabilities of the "body" part of me. Oh, gee, I'm a unitary executive!

Thanks for your thoughts and input, btw.

Oct. 13 2008 03:32 PM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

What IS the Big Me##?

Chris Floyd, a blogger and reporter/columnist, has a great summary of the various parts of the Big Me$$, of which the mortgage problems are only a part.

It was the economic equivalent of vaporware--that was not just talked about, as in the dot com era, but actually sold--and then these derivatives were "securitized" and "insured" through the insurance which dare not use the word insurance, credit default swaps (CDS), to all build up to the Big $hit Pile.

And, now, as always happens, the $hit runs downhill and onto the people who had nothing to do with creating the mess.

He's done a good job of bringing the various components together, I think.

Toward the end, he points out that those in power are trying in every way possbible to push the paying for the mess onto the great bulk of Americans who did nothing to cause this problem. He notes the WaPo has begun beating the drum for cutting "entitlements," read SocSec and Medicare.

Just as Clinton was beaten around the head to clean up the fiscal profligacy of Reagan and Bush I (who was nowhere near as irresponsible as his son), Obama will be told by The Villagers that he must cut, cut, cut, and, most important, must not allow NEW social programs. For that is the way of the uber-wealthy and how they stay that way....

Oct. 13 2008 03:31 PM

full disclosure:
I once had a 450-pound patient. All the staff made fun of her, and to be honest, she was a difficult patient. But I was heartbroken just looking at her. I thought, okay, this is the exception to the rule, but if she had been provided with a strict athletic regimen in childhood and a proper diet, she might only have been a 200 pound patient. Because with her it wasn't all thyroid, there had been a lot of behavioral factors once she became mildly overweight. So these things snowball...
Think of how limited/constricted your life would be at that weight. MC once told me that a woman who cannot have an abortion is a slave in her own body, but to my mind, that's only a slave internship - nine months.
But a person who is 450 pounds is really a slave in her own body... she can't even walk. And to a lesser degree, overweight kids are also relatively immobilized. Once they get T2 diabetes, it is really not so much, as the medical/pharma industry would like to suggest, "manageable."

Oct. 13 2008 02:08 PM

j, that's an interesting idea, but the fact is that we HAVE to cover people too poor to pay taxes, if only because of contagious diseases. So jawbone is right in pushing for UHC, because if "joe housing project" (alternate of joe six-pack, also possibly uninsured) isn't covered, then none of us are covered.
Also, far be it for me to say, but because it's the NICE thing to do.
I guess my (tortured) point is that as nice as the doctors and nurses may seem, you just should want to stay out of hospitals. Just trust me on this one... they're nice people, but 1) accidents happen, 2) they're not omnipotent, and 3) once you're sick, there's only so much they can do.

Oct. 13 2008 02:02 PM
j from nyc

maybe universal health care should be referred to as standardized health care. a quality control idea, that the gov't is responsibel to everyone who pays taxes for maintaining a [hopefully] higher level of atleast preventive health care [regular checkups including dental and women's and men's basic gender specific needs] so that across state lines, we know that the feds have a basic idea of the health of the general population in the country. this would be instead of only state by state or just the CDC when illness/disease break out.
state boards approve the doctors qualifications in each state - once heard that in PA, that @5% of the doctors who were recertified caused over half the malpractice suits, thus raising everyone elses rates, but that PA board wouldn't kick out that 5%.
also - as a matter of public health and standardization - does anybody's HMO cover anthrax? [or any other bioterror weapons?]

Oct. 13 2008 01:53 PM

I do agree with you on the need for UHC.
But I think we need a sober assessment of what that would entail.
I see UHC as addressing FIRST prevention.
That means:
bring back the phys ed to the schools
make it a priority
educate kids about nutrition
tax credits for gym memberships THAT ARE USED
And, as in vaunted France, which Michael Moore would like to emulate, let's bring back some old-fashioned (going back to the classical world) realism about the need for social pressure in controlling weight. In France, there is a great deal of social pressure to remain thin.
Please understand that is a big factor in HOW they can afford their level of health care - most of them aren't already sick.
Again, this is not about your particular thyroid. You are, in this case, the exception to the rule. But your condition does not excuse failing to educate kids about how to keep themselves healthy.
This is not about snobbism. Trust me. This is about what we can afford to provide people, and how overburdened our health care system ALREADY is, because of preventable diseases.

Oct. 13 2008 01:11 PM

I appreciate your personal story, but you are unfortunately missing the larger point.
Most overweight and obese patients who are suffering from Type II diabetes DO NOT have thyroid problems.
To blame outside forces for what you yourself can control is to invite more people to get sick to a degree that medicine can't help them. This is about saving people, not promising them things we cannot deliver.
Please also be aware that for most people, hormonal activity can in part be regulated through diet and exercise. This is not touchy-feely wishfulness, this is established scientific fact.
Can you list the hormones? What effect does diet and exercise have on epinephrine? On dopamine? On insulin? These are essential human hormones that are affected by our own behavior. Two-way street - we are influenced by our hormones, and our own behavior influences our hormone production.
It is cruel and unusual punishment to children to pretend that Type II diabetes is something that just "happens" to them, instead of informing them of how to prevent it.
Again, compare the stats in Europe and the UK vs. the US. This is not beyond our control. It is largely (yes, there are exceptions) a matter of activity and diet.

Oct. 13 2008 01:03 PM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

UHC comment cont'd:

Maybe with universal healthcare (UHC) we could help people better manage whatever is affecting their well-being, from extraneous chemicals making their way into their food to their not eating well enough or feeding their children well enough.

I see no downside to UHC--it's better for all people, especially those under or not insured; it's better for small businesses especially, but for all businesses; it's better for workers who can then make work decisions based on what they want and can do best and not on whether they'll get the health insurance benefit.

What's not to like? It would even be there during times such as these when people lose their jobs through absolutely no fault of their own. When the economy is turned topsy-turvy by the Big Banker Boiz playing with unusual and little understood exotic financial instruments, which they then slice, dice, puree, repackage and sell.

Too bad we don't have it.

Oct. 13 2008 12:53 PM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

eva, Comment #53, having had my thyroid removed, I have become incredibly aware of the power of hormones in the human body. Now that I have only synthetic thyroid hormones, my body is not reacting the same way it did when I had natural thyroid hormones. (Some patients experience little difference; some experience great differences--it's also amazing how human bodies react differently to similar stimuli and situations).

I used to feel pretty much the way you do, that obesity is a matter of personal control and sort the same way about Type II diabetes. Now, experiencing things which I have little to no control over, I can assure you not all people can control weight, blood sugar, many things simply through diet and exercise.

What's terribly frustrating is that I had a period when everything seemed to synch perfectly--and for the first time in my life I did not need to measure every little intake of calories--my body just balanced. That changed markedly and frustratingly after my surgery and radiation treatment.

So, given the number of chemicals which are getting into the bodies of people in the Western world from, say, drinking water from certain types of plastic, from breathing the air, from hormones and drugs which get into our clean drinking water supplies--well, I am less willing to to say, hey, you with the extra pounds! You're not being a good citizen! Or, hey, you kid with Type II diabetes, you're a bad citizen.


Oct. 13 2008 12:50 PM

#49, jawbone,
I have a suggestion.
Instead of focusing on an ideal European-style universal healthcare program (which is not entirely realistic given the level of overweight and obesity-related illness in the US, ck Type II diabetes and heart disease rates in the US, which are entirely preventable)
why don't we try to be honest with people?
And tell them
1) we can't afford to pay for preventable illness if we are going to pay for critical stuff like treatment of childhood asthma
2) people have got to start taking care of themselves.
The number one responsibility that EVERY American owes 1) themselves and 2) their neighbor is:
(even at risk of fewer overtime hours) TAKE CARE of their body to prevent heart disease and Type II Diabetes. Those diseases don't just kill people, they cripple state budgets.
In the end, the biggest 401K and the best healthcare in the world can't save most Americans. The state doesn't care about you - and to an extent, if you don't care enough about yourself to avoid preventable disease, why should they?

Oct. 13 2008 12:10 PM
Art Allgauer from Metuchen, NJ

Does not writing any subprime mortgages mean that Investors Savings Bank ignored the calls of Congress as well as Presidents Bush and Clinton to offer mortgages to underserved communities?

Oct. 13 2008 11:35 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Continued from first part of comment:

Also, Obama said on Saturday to fundraiser audience that he will probably have to cut out plans for healthcare and education funding...nice, huh? Just after he said he thinks healthcare is a right.

From Huffington Post article:

As 250 major donors ate beet salad and mahi-mahi under a huge tent, Obama seemed to look ahead to his first term as president.

"We're going to have to make some priorities, we're going to have to cut some things out," he said, referring to expensive goals such as improving health care, schools and college affordability.

"I'm going to be in some fights with my own Democratic Party in getting some of that done," he said.

Don't say he didn't warn us. He reminds me of some of those people I dated who said up front they weren't ready to settle down or would even warn me they would hurt me. They always lived up to their more negative warnings....

I fear we will not have Obama pushing for real healthcare legislation. Hillary will push; Ted may push when he gets back to the Senate. Obama, not so much.

Oct. 13 2008 11:22 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Finally found the Obama op-ed--in the NYPost.

Pretty standard stump speech stuff. With some carrots for NY pointed out.

No mention of HOLC/HOME (Hillary's bottom up assistance with mortgages). No mention of healthcare. I mean, how could universal healthcare help give middle class and below Americans economic security?

To be continued.

Oct. 13 2008 11:21 AM
moviemouth from Manhattan

Re: Muni Bonds

Amy Resnick is the 2nd "expert" you've had discuss the current merits thereof who has failed to mention the AMT (Alternative Minimum Tax). No matter how attractive Muni's might be, for many many listeners (especialy those with many tax exemptions i.e. dependents, the AMT imposes a hard limitation on how much can be profitably held. To not even mention this point is irresponsibel to say the least.

Oct. 13 2008 11:17 AM
Steve from Manhattan (the original one) from Manhattan

To continue my comment from above re Peter Wallison's lies and evasions about Republicans' part in causing the current financial crisis:
Brian: If you let guests get away with conveying false ideas about this complicated issue and where the candidates stand on it, you're not doing your job. You should give an on-the-air correction to what Wallison said (i.e., telling what Wallison omitted re the FULL story of what Republicans did to enable risky investors to cause the financial meltdown).

Oct. 13 2008 11:16 AM
Steve from Manhattan (the original one) from Manhattan

McCain booster Wallison gave only half the story, talking about the Gramm-Leach-Bailey Act of 1999 & not saying a word about Gramm's Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 legitimizing the "credit swap agreements" at the core of the financial crisis. (Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac are NOT at the heart of the crisis, and only came into play as a factor about a year ago.) Title IV, the "Legal Certainty for Bank Products Act of 2000," which Gramm snuck in without hearings, included a provision that ensured the "Legal Certainty for Swap Agreements," successfully divorcing the granters of subprime mortgage loans from any obligation to ever collect on them, and prohibiting regulation of new financial instruments permitted after the financial industry mergers: "No provision of the Commodity Exchange Act shall apply to, and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission shall not exercise regulatory authority with respect to, an identified banking product which had not been commonly offered, entered into, or provided in the United States by any bank on or before December 5, 2000." Another Steve from Manhattan made similar comments (see comments #15 and 30). What he didn't say is that Gramm was McCain's principal economic adviser and is still advising McCain from behind the scenes.

Oct. 13 2008 11:13 AM
NWP from CT

Re: Bank Manager attempt to discourage withdrawal of all funds.

As usual we should examine the self-interest aspect to this situation. Most "BIG" bank branch managers are reviewed/promoted based on a number of parameters. One of the hightest ranked measures is account retention. (Personal knowledge)

Total dollars in deposit accounts is VERY important to that individual if he wants to keep his job and move ahead in the system. How old was the 'manager'? How long in his current assignment?

Oct. 13 2008 11:06 AM
Gary St. Armand from Valley Stream

Didn't Senator Phil Graham insert a 262 page rider to an 11,000 pg appropreations,just before Congress recessed for Christmas break in 2000, bill. The rider was called The Commodity Futures Modernization Act, and it not only totally deregulated this type of futures trading federally. I'm tired of you republican apologists at NPR tryin' to come off as neutral. We're in this mess because of a philosophy pushed by republicans and embraced by democrats. that philosophy is let the market decide everything and screw the little because they continue to vote against their own interest.

These !@$%holes don't work for us, they work for the big bosses.
I think it's

Oct. 13 2008 11:01 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn very uninformed banker told me up to 10 years for full payment depending on certain circumstances...

Oct. 13 2008 11:01 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

The savings banks up here in Kingston apparently didn't make subprime loans either and most of them are in great shape. So not everyone went crazy during the real estate boom.

Oct. 13 2008 11:00 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn

wow...this guys is great...didn't handle any dodgie loans and the bank is doing great! What a concept...ethics!

Oct. 13 2008 10:59 AM

the fed is in charge of monitoring the us economy and acting in event of crisis.

the us treasury dept prints money and regulates banks.

after bernanke's initial statements and comments, it seems that it's, surprisingly, the treasury -- and not the fed -- is the one setting policy.

bernanke versus paulson? would love to be a fly on the wall in 202ville -- the detonation of a free market by definition prompts a handful of FASCINATING characters.

Oct. 13 2008 10:57 AM
Amy from Manhattan

How long does it take for the FDIC to pay a depositor's claim? How does it work--do they send a check? Make a deposit to a safer institution?

Oct. 13 2008 10:51 AM
Amy from Manhattan

Not regulating Fannie & Freddie was the Democrats' fault not because they opposed the bill but because they "refused to limit debate"? Why did the Republicans *want* to limit debate?

Oct. 13 2008 10:49 AM
Mike from Jersey City from NJ

Banks are notorious for making it hard for depositers to liquidate accounts. I've had this experience numerous times in the past.

Oct. 13 2008 10:48 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Re: Comment 30--

For more information on the private oil exchanges permitted by the Phil Gramm secretly inserted clause, listen to this Fresh Air interview with Antonia Juhasz (pronounced you-house). The major objective was to avoid government regulation, which Gramm's clause achieved.

Juhasz posits that these have allowed Big Oil and the Big Banker Boiz to game the oil futures system and this has created huge volatility in the price of oil.

Plus, they have set up mechanisms to make their activities even more removed from any oversight, which the Merry Banksters who have moved into owning oil fields, pipelines, production facilities are using to increase their profits. She names names. Very interesting.

Oct. 13 2008 10:48 AM
McGill from Montreal

McCain guest is wrong about the relative speed of fiscal stimulus. I have a graduate degree in economics [mine from NYU]. A tax cut is one step further for fiscal stimulus because it not only needs to wait for the Congress to pass the bill like government spending. Tax cuts require the taxpayer to decide to spend it on something. If the taxpayer saves the tax rebate or cut, there is no stimulus. The best fiscal stimulus is government spending on people whose businesses will expand and spend the money again.

I detest my Quebec keyboard, letters keep missing!

Oct. 13 2008 10:41 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

Sue: I bought a home in Brooklyn in 1978 when most of the borough was redlined. I figured out how to do it and in 2005 I bought my home up here. I lost my home in Brooklyn as a result of a divorce so I had to come up with the $ to start again.

Oct. 13 2008 10:40 AM
Taher from Croton on Hudson

Mr. Wallison is full of false information.
In short he is right wing con man.

Oct. 13 2008 10:39 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Susan, your #25 comment is exactly where I am, as well. We agree--guess I just read you wrong---which is sooooo easy on these brief comments.

Thnx for the clarification.

It's actually amazing how well people do communicate in these quick, truncated comments, but it's still easy to not get the complete meaning. Again, agreed!

Oct. 13 2008 10:38 AM

ha ha! (19)

Oct. 13 2008 10:38 AM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

Wasn't Gramm/Leach/Bliley as far as I can tell (from Mother Jones):

But Gramm's most cunning coup on behalf of his friends in the financial services industry—friends who gave him millions over his 24-year congressional career—came on December 15, 2000. It was an especially tense time in Washington. Only two days earlier, the Supreme Court had issued its decision on Bush v. Gore. President Bill Clinton and the Republican-controlled Congress were locked in a budget showdown. It was the perfect moment for a wily senator to game the system. As Congress and the White House were hurriedly hammering out a $384-billion omnibus spending bill, Gramm slipped in a 262-page measure called the Commodity Futures Modernization Act. Written with the help of financial industry lobbyists and cosponsored by Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) ...
It's not exactly like Gramm hid his handiwork—far from it. The balding and bespectacled Texan strode onto the Senate floor to hail the act's inclusion into the must-pass budget package. But only an expert, or a lobbyist, could have followed what Gramm was saying. The act, he declared, would ensure that neither the sec nor the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (cftc) got into the business of regulating newfangled financial products called swaps—and would thus "protect financial institutions from overregulation" and "position our financial services industries to be world leaders into the new century."

Oct. 13 2008 10:38 AM

then when do you raise taxes then (or cut spending)?

when times are rich?

cuz we are coming off unprecedented wealth building -- so where's the gop sponsored rainy day fund? cmon.

Oct. 13 2008 10:37 AM
Sue from Brooklyn

Susan -- bailing out people who didn't due their due diligence may be the price we all have to pay to maintain a financial system without which no one will get mortgages. It sticks in my craw -- I didn't buy a home because I knew the mortgage structures that made NYC real estate were garbage -- but I'd rather not have to save 25 years to be able to buy my own home. Which may be the alternative.

Oct. 13 2008 10:37 AM
Leo Queens from Queens


Your current guest is lying and you should call him on it - The Graham law passed 'overwhelmingly' by the Senate was snuck in to an 11,000 page spending bill during the last day of the Congress right in December 1999 when Americans were preocupied with the Bush take over of the election victory by Al Gore

Oct. 13 2008 10:37 AM
N from NYC

#19, I believe it is Peter Wallison from the American Enterprise Institute who is speaking, not Jeffrey Sachs; Jeffrey Sachs hasn't spoken yet! I second your opinion about Wallison, though - lies and the lying liars that tell them.

Oct. 13 2008 10:36 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

Jawbone: I am aware of all of that, but there is no free lunch for anyone. I am fully aware that my house and stock portfolio is losing value daily, but I think that many of these owners could be given reasonable 30-year or more mortgages to pay off. There also needs to be creative ways to accommodate individual needs.

Oct. 13 2008 10:35 AM
Chuck from Brooklyn

McCain is all short term and short cited.

That's why we are in this dump.

Oct. 13 2008 10:35 AM
Sue from Brooklyn

Argh, of course repeal of Glass Steagall helped create all this. By creating super size balance sheets, it encouraged brokers to take outsize risks (increasing their own balance sheets by the use of leverage).

Oct. 13 2008 10:34 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Mike--bcz they love to combine race and class issues negatively with Dems. Even if they're untrue or only partially true.

And they have the radio conservative talk shows and FOX (and, still, lots of MCMers--members of the Mainstream Corporate Media) to repeat their incorrect statements and blare out their incorrect ideas through the Mighty Wurlitzer of rightwing propaganda.

I'm hoping Krugman'a Nobel Prize for economics will result in his column being published more widely than it is now. Maureen Dowd and her snark are far more widely published than his prescient and cogent columns.

Oct. 13 2008 10:33 AM
jack from Brooklyn

Brian, why give Obama's adviser more time than McCain's. aren't you supposed to be fair? That said, I think the Democratic congress is just as much to blame for the crisis as is the Bush adminstration. Obama is gaining from an irrational fear which will subside once the voters and the markes become more optimistic.The real problem with Obama is that he'll have all three branches of government with no balance of powers.

Oct. 13 2008 10:33 AM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

Point is that Gramm slipped it in, not that Dems supported bill. Bad that few Dems looked, worse that Gramm did what he did.

Oct. 13 2008 10:32 AM
Chuck from Brooklyn

Classic Jeffery Sachs. Lies!!!!

What about Phil Gramm?

Try to turn it back to Obama. What a bunch of bull.

Oct. 13 2008 10:32 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn

Jawbone: we should not prop up a falling housing market...let them get to the "fair market value"...not the inflated wish I could get price...If someone bought a house to live in, not just to flip for a profit, why are they being penalized by the bailout...Sounds like Susan is content in paying ofr the house she has a mortgage on, and is for figuring out a way to help refinance dedicated payers that may be in a little over their heads, but don't tell me its everyone in the same mess...

Oct. 13 2008 10:32 AM
N from NYC

Is this not deregulation, amongst other things?

Oct. 13 2008 10:32 AM
O from Forest Hills

No deregulation of the banking industry in the past 30 years?

Well, then what do you call Bill Graham, Mccainn's financial advisor and his wife passing in 1999 the repeal of the Glat Spegel act to mortgage banks.

Let us also clarify that Goldman Sachs and all of these "Banks" that went belly up two weeks ago are not banks but "debentures" that gambled on the stock market.

Oct. 13 2008 10:31 AM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

This McCain guy is lying - Phil Gramm slipped the law into a bill that prevented SEC and others from requlating credit default swaps. Gramm, you will agree, is a Republican.

Oct. 13 2008 10:31 AM

Wallison ---

the term deregulation is the well bred "leftist" critic's reference to killing the federal regulators

such as sec, fda, epa, even a go at the justice dept itself.

Oct. 13 2008 10:28 AM
Mike from NYC

Why do conservatives insist on making Fannie and Freddie the cornerstone of this collapse? Fannie and Freddie were just one of dozens of major players in this market.

Oct. 13 2008 10:28 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Susan, you may not be able to both things you see as doable.

Many can keep their homes if their interest rates don't go up, which might meet your criteria. But enough will go into foreclosure that your own home's value will fall.


Oct. 13 2008 10:28 AM
Chuck from Brooklyn

McCain is mob deep with banks.

How many banker lobbyists does he have working for his campaign?

Over 80!!!

Oct. 13 2008 10:27 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Susan, your house is losing value bcz of what's happening in the overall mortgage Big $h*t Pile and, subsequently, your investments, if you have any in the stock market or even money markets accounts, are losing value bcz of what's happening in the Big Me$$.

It's kind of a benign self-interest. Helping your neighbor helps yourself. Then, when we come to a better balance in the economy, we must have better regulation of the Merry Banksters and of those selling mortgages.

I would rather see a commodity in oversupply be put to good use, as in people having a place to live, than to just destroy the whole thing to avoid some small time econ "moral hazards."

But, for those who sold mortgages using lies to trick people into believing they could manage such high mortgages on their less than grand incomes--that is reprehensible. Is it illegal? I'm not a lawyer. I would make it illegal if it's not. Seems like fraud to me.

Oct. 13 2008 10:24 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

Joe: Thanks. I am for refinancing some of the homeowners that we taken advantage of if there is a reasonable way to do it, but they need to pay the full price for their homes so that the rest of us don't see more of our home's value lost.

Oct. 13 2008 10:23 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn

Brian: who CARES what the NYTimes advises...we don't vote for them...

Oct. 13 2008 10:20 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

I missed where the op-ed Brian mentioned is published--is it by Obama himself? Or Goolsbee (or just ghosted by Goolsbee?)?

Or, did I mishear as I was walking around?

Thnx much for citation, link!! Or clarification.

[[Jawbone - Just posted a link to the op-ed above.]]

Oct. 13 2008 10:18 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn

Susan: you shouldn't have to....

Oct. 13 2008 10:18 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

Why should I as a taxpayer pay for someone else's mortgage when I am paying for my own mortgage. I bought a house during the same period that many of these homebuyers who are defaulting on their mortgages did. As a responsible buyer I did my research, found out what I could afford and what type of financing was available. Why should bailout irresponsible buyers and spectators?

Oct. 13 2008 10:17 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn

We don't care about character we care about image...he is in the pocket of banks as bad as the rest...

Oct. 13 2008 10:08 AM
Chuck from Brooklyn

My Friends,

McCain will say anything to try and get votes.


Oct. 13 2008 10:08 AM

Will Obama resist the temptation to throw tax dollars and debt at bailing out irresponsible borrowers, thereby further obfuscating the market and prolonging the pain?

Or will he forsake the conservative values ironically being harbored by Democrats for the last few years and just copy McCain?

This issue is the true test of character.

Oct. 13 2008 10:07 AM
Joe Corrao from Brooklyn

well here's a guy that predicted what's happening now, 2 years ago...and he was mocked by MSM...maybe we should find these smart guys that predicted bad news and were right rather than listening to the "we are the best" rhetoric that most give us....oh ya Schiff advises Ron Paul...

Oct. 13 2008 10:00 AM

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