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Fannie Mae Eases Credit to Aid Mortgage Lendinig

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Has anyone noticed that that Clinton has been on TV saying that HE called for more oversite on Fannie Mae?

Notice this below !!!!! >>>>> Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people and felt pressure from stock holders to maintain its phenomenal growth in profits.

Fannie Mae Eases Credit To Aid Mortgage Lending

By STEVEN A. HOLMES

Published: September 30, 1999

In a move that could help increase home ownership rates among minorities and low-income consumers, the Fannie Mae Corporation is easing the credit requirements on loans that it will purchase from banks and other lenders.

The action, which will begin as a pilot program involving 24 banks in 15 markets -- including the New York metropolitan region -- will encourage those banks to extend home mortgages to individuals whose credit is generally not good enough to qualify for conventional loans. Fannie Mae officials say they hope to make it a nationwide program by next spring.

Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people and felt pressure from stock holders to maintain its phenomenal growth in profits.

In addition, banks, thrift institutions and mortgage companies have been pressing Fannie Mae to help them make more loans to so-called subprime borrowers. These borrowers whose incomes, credit ratings and savings are not good enough to qualify for conventional loans, can only get loans from finance companies that charge much higher interest rates -- anywhere from three to four percentage points higher than conventional loans.

''Fannie Mae has expanded home ownership for millions of families in the 1990's by reducing down payment requirements,'' said Franklin D. Raines, Fannie Mae's chairman and chief executive officer. ''Yet there remain too many borrowers whose credit is just a notch below what our underwriting has required who have been relegated to paying significantly higher mortgage rates in the so-called subprime market.''

Demographic information on these borrowers is sketchy. But at least one study indicates that 18 percent of the loans in the subprime market went to black borrowers, compared to 5 per cent of loans in the conventional loan market.

In moving, even tentatively, into this new area of lending, Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980's.

''From the perspective of many people, including me, this is another thrift industry growing up around us,'' said Peter Wallison a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. ''If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.''

Under Fannie Mae's pilot program, consumers who qualify can secure a mortgage with an interest rate one percentage point above that of a conventional, 30-year fixed rate mortgage of less than $240,000 -- a rate that currently averages about 7.76 per cent. If the borrower makes his or her monthly payments on time for two years, the one percentage point premium is dropped.

Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, does not lend money directly to consumers. Instead, it purchases loans that banks make on what is called the secondary market. By expanding the type of loans that it will buy, Fannie Mae is hoping to spur banks to make more loans to people with less-than-stellar credit ratings.

Fannie Mae officials stress that the new mortgages will be extended to all potential borrowers who can qualify for a mortgage. But they add that the move is intended in part to increase the number of minority and low income home owners who tend to have worse credit ratings than non-Hispanic whites.

Home ownership has, in fact, exploded among minorities during the economic boom of the 1990's. The number of mortgages extended to Hispanic applicants jumped by 87.2 per cent from 1993 to 1998, according to Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies. During that same period the number of African Americans who got mortgages to buy a home increased by 71.9 per cent and the number of Asian Americans by 46.3 per cent.

In contrast, the number of non-Hispanic whites who received loans for homes increased by 31.2 per cent.

Despite these gains, home ownership rates for minorities continue to lag behind non-Hispanic whites, in part because blacks and Hispanics in particular tend to have on average worse credit ratings.

In July, the Department of Housing and Urban Development proposed that by the year 2001, 50 percent of Fannie Mae's and Freddie Mac's portfolio be made up of loans to low and moderate-income borrowers. Last year, 44 percent of the loans Fannie Mae purchased were from these groups.

The change in policy also comes at the same time that HUD is investigating allegations of racial discrimination in the automated underwriting systems used by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to determine the credit-worthiness of credit applicants.

1999! HOW MANY TIMES DID THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION RAISE THE RED FLAG, AND THEY WERE STOPPED BY THE DEMOCRATS???

Future research:

Jamie Gerelic

Barney Frank

Chuck Shumer

Former heads of FNMA/FHLMC

Obama's Campaign personnel and their relation to FNMA/FHLMC

Campaign contributions from FNMA/FHLMC to Repulican and Democrat candidates


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Here is MORE backup for FNMA/FHLMC (from HOTAIR.COM)

Whose policies led to the credit crisis?

posted at 9:40 am on September 16, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

The credit crisis and the lack of oversight over government-subsidized lenders like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac occurred on the watch of George Bush, and many blame his economic team for their lack of oversight in the collapse. Barack Obama has made this point one of his major campaign themes, arguing that John McCain would provide more of the same failures that Bush did. However, what many do not recall is that Bush wanted to tighten oversight with a new regulatory board for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and other government recipients for the express purpose of addressing bad loan practices — and Democrats blocked it.

The New York Times reported this five years ago:

The Bush administration today recommended the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago.

Under the plan, disclosed at a Congressional hearing today, a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending industry.

The new agency would have the authority, which now rests with Congress, to set one of the two capital-reserve requirements for the companies. It would exercise authority over any new lines of business. And it would determine whether the two are adequately managing the risks of their ballooning portfolios.

The plan is an acknowledgment by the administration that oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — which together have issued more than $1.5 trillion in outstanding debt — is broken. A report by outside investigators in July concluded that Freddie Mac manipulated its accounting to mislead investors, and critics have said Fannie Mae does not adequately hedge against rising interest rates.

This should have been a no-brainer, right? With hindsight, we can see that the Bush administration had accurately diagnosed the problem in the lending market and had a plan to address it. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac reluctantly supported the plan. However, Democrats objected (emphases mine):

Among the groups denouncing the proposal today were the National Association of Home Builders and Congressional Democrats who fear that tighter regulation of the companies could sharply reduce their commitment to financing low-income and affordable housing.

”These two entities — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — are not facing any kind of financial crisis,” said Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee. ”The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing.”

Representative Melvin L. Watt, Democrat of North Carolina, agreed.

”I don’t see much other than a shell game going on here, moving something from one agency to another and in the process weakening the bargaining power of poorer families and their ability to get affordable housing,” Mr. Watt said.

Sounds a little like the Democratic denial of problems in Social Security, doesn’t it? Nothing to see here, no crisis on the horizon. Everybody just move along, now. The Democrats had forced lenders to assume more risk at lower interest rates in the 1990s, as IBD points out today, and they didn’t want to countenance an end to their populist policies:

But it was the Clinton administration, obsessed with multiculturalism, that dictated where mortgage lenders could lend, and originally helped create the market for the high-risk subprime loans now infecting like a retrovirus the balance sheets of many of Wall Street’s most revered institutions.

Tough new regulations forced lenders into high-risk areas where they had no choice but to lower lending standards to make the loans that sound business practices had previously guarded against making. It was either that or face stiff government penalties.

The untold story in this whole national crisis is that President Clinton put on steroids the Community Redevelopment Act, a well-intended Carter-era law designed to encourage minority homeownership. And in so doing, he helped create the market for the risky subprime loans that he and Democrats now decry as not only greedy but “predatory.”

Yes, the market was fueled by greed and overleveraging in the secondary market for subprimes, vis-a-vis mortgaged-backed securities traded on Wall Street. But the seed was planted in the ’90s by Clinton and his social engineers. They were the political catalyst behind this slow-motion financial train wreck.

And it was the Clinton administration that mismanaged the quasi-governmental agencies that over the decades have come to manage the real estate market in America.

It was the Bush administration that wanted to rein in the madness in the credit markets, and the Democrats who wanted to extend the Clinton policies that created the crisis we have now. After the fit hit the shan, as Michelle says, these same Democrats want to shift blame back to the administration that wanted to increase oversight and curtail risk in lending practices while reducing patronage at the giant GSEs.

The Bush administration isn’t blameless in letting this get out of hand, but clearly the origins of the disaster and the efforts to keep bad policies in place fall on the Democrats in this case.

Update: John Lott points me to a March column he wrote at Fox News explaining the underlying causes of the debacle. Forcing lenders to make questionable loans and blocking tougher regulation of the government-supported entities was a recipe for collapse, and Lott explained it six months before it happened


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John Lott, a senior research scientist at the University of Maryland, however, claimed in a Fox News article yesterday that the success came at a great price.

According to Lott, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston produced a manual in the early '90s that warned mortgage lenders to no longer deny urban and lower-income minority applicants on such "outdated" criteria as credit history, down payment or employment income.

Furthermore, claims Lott, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac encouraged and praised lenders – like Countrywide and Bear Stearns – for adopting the slackened policies toward minority applicants.

"Given these lending practices mandated by the Fed and encouraged by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac," writes Lott, "the resulting financial problems for financial institutions such as Countrywide and Bear Stearns are not too surprising."

OUTDATED CRITERIA SUCH AS EMPLOYMENT INCOME!!!!!


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There is far more than enough blame to go around. As a semi-conservative you'll understand I'd maybe like to put the blame for the problem at the feet of Democrats such a Barney Frank (Congress) or Sen. Dodd (Senate), but Republicans ruled both houses and the White House for a number of years. And what did they do? No one would argue that they spent us into oblivion.

The Glass-Steagle Act repeal, leading to our current dismal economic situation, occured in 1989 during the Clinton administration, but its repeal was advocated by Sen. Phil Gramm ®. Gramm was supposedly the "mastermind" of Republican economics.

He's not looking so good now.

Regards,

Warren


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There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved. - Ludwig von Mises

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I will, get the details of what exactly the Bush administration did to raise the red flag, someone actually posted a video of it someplace.

It is very important to understand the climate of Washington during all of this. We are approaching an election year, it is an important election year with lots at stake, the dems and the press and media have been mean spirited, showing the negative side of the war, they attacked relentlessly for 7 years attacking everything, including traditional holidays, the entire Bush Administration, ripping republicans, and lauding democrats, we are spending money in this war in an outrageous fashion, the dems talking about bailing in Iraq and ripping our troops, KANYE WEST "BUSH HATES BLACK PEOPLE", katrina, 9 FN 11, Global FN Warming, Michael Moore and his ilk, hollywood, stock market going nuts, DAN RATHER, CHADS talk of impeachment, they had big fish to fry and the implications of PUTTING UP A STOP SIGN, and STOPPING THE GOLDEN GOOSE , STOPPING THE MONEY TRAIN for the REPUBLICANS would have been OVER FN WHELMING and the PRESS and LIBERAL PAPERS and STATIONS would have said the REPUBLICANS were for the RICH LOOK LOOK LOOK, they STOPPED your MONEY TRAIN they are RACIST, ETC ETC ETC. BE REAL HERE... this is the same issue with illegal immigration, if you stand up for closed borders, fences you are somehow racist according to the Democrats. What I don't understand is why someone with a brain does NOT stand up and explain it to the American people in simple terms. That was Reagan's talent, educating the masses, leading, not doing polls

THE FACT IS, the REPUBLICANS RAISED THE RED FLAG NUMBEROUS TIMES, I WILL GET THE FACTS ON THAT, and the DEMS came out EVERY TIME with STRONG PARTISAN defense of FNMA/FHLMC, Barney Frank, Chuck Shumer, Pelosi spoke of how much of incredible job the director was doing, while he was cooking the books, to meet performance goals to get his BONUS, which he was eventually fired for. Ill get the facts..

I imagine, the Republicans could have done the right thing and stood up and CUT THEIR THROATS, this is the will of the people. No one wanted to kill the golden goose, it was a house of cards. I have said it before, Greenspan is an adviser now, isn't it odd that the morning of the Lehman Bros and AIG disaster he was on FOX news at 9 AM?, INTEREST RATES were WAY LOW given the risks involved for a LONG time.. The low interest rate environment and feeding frenzy had a big part in this on top of the poor underlying credit allowed by FHMA/FHLMC.


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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gramm-Leach-Bliley_Act is what they blame most of these financial issues on. It was a republican dominated house at the time, clinton just signed off on supporting a document the republicans ultimitely favored to pass.

The bills were introduced in the Senate by Phil Gramm (R-TX) and in the House of Representatives by James Leach (R-IA). The bills were passed by a 54-44 vote along party lines with Republican support in the Senate and by a 343-86 vote in the House of Representatives. Nov 4, 1999: After passing both the Senate and House the bill was moved to a conference committee to work out the differences between the Senate and House versions. Democrats agreed to support the bill after Republicans agreed to strengthen provisions of the Community Reinvestment Act and address certain privacy concerns.[1] The final bill resolving the differences was passed in the Senate 90-8-1 and in the House: 362-57-15. This 'veto proof legislation' was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on November 12, 1999[2]

ANd yes, I did hear the BUSH administration tried to put something through the house but it was denied, I am not sure exactly what. Little too late if you ask me.

Edited by steve6

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Steve6, watch this video and you will see about the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. The problem was created 2 years before the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act by the Clinton Administration in 1995 with the new $1 trillion subprime CRA loan authorization and they unleashed subprime mortgage securities that before this did not exist. Watch this video, pause it to read the comments and articles. Note that Grahm-Leach-Bliley Act was CHAMPIONED by Democrat Robert Rubin! It passed 90 - 8, the vast majority of democrats supported it.. I sent an email to Mark Levin, I want him to cover the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, I have seen this used before as defense, but the horse had left the barn LONG BEFORE the act.


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This article was written the winter of 2000 BEFORE BUSH was elected, see it here

http://www.city-journal.org/html/10_1_the_...ion_dollar.html

The Trillion-Dollar Bank Shakedown That Bodes Ill for Cities

Howard Husock

The Clinton administration has turned the Community Reinvestment Act, a once-obscure and lightly enforced banking regulation law, into one of the most powerful mandates shaping American cities—and, as Senate Banking Committee chairman Phil Gramm memorably put it, a vast extortion scheme against the nation's banks. Under its provisions, U.S. banks have committed nearly $1 trillion for inner-city and low-income mortgages and real estate development projects, most of it funneled through a nationwide network of left-wing community groups, intent, in some cases, on teaching their low-income clients that the financial system is their enemy and, implicitly, that government, rather than their own striving, is the key to their well-being.

The CRA's premise sounds unassailable: helping the poor buy and keep homes will stabilize and rebuild city neighborhoods. As enforced today, though, the law portends just the opposite, threatening to undermine the efforts of the upwardly mobile poor by saddling them with neighbors more than usually likely to depress property values by not maintaining their homes adequately or by losing them to foreclosure. The CRA's logic also helps to ensure that inner-city neighborhoods stay poor by discouraging the kinds of investment that might make them better off.

The Act, which Jimmy Carter signed in 1977, grew out of the complaint that urban banks were "redlining" inner-city neighborhoods, refusing to lend to their residents while using their deposits to finance suburban expansion. CRA decreed that banks have "an affirmative obligation" to meet the credit needs of the communities in which they are chartered, and that federal banking regulators should assess how well they do that when considering their requests to merge or to open branches. Implicit in the bill's rationale was a belief that CRA was needed to counter racial discrimination in lending, an assumption that later seemed to gain support from a widely publicized 1990 Federal Reserve Bank of Boston finding that blacks and Hispanics suffered higher mortgage-denial rates than whites, even at similar income levels.

In addition, the Act's backers claimed, CRA would be profitable for banks. They just needed a push from the law to learn how to identify profitable inner-city lending opportunities. Going one step further, the Treasury Department recently asserted that banks that do figure out ways to reach inner-city borrowers might not be able to stop competitors from using similar methods—and therefore would not undertake such marketing in the first place without a push from Washington.

None of these justifications holds up, however, because of the changes that reshaped America's banking industry in the 1990s. Banking in the 1970s, when CRA was passed, was a highly regulated industry in which small, local savings banks, rather than commercial banks, provided most home mortgages. Regulation prohibited savings banks from branching across state lines and sometimes even limited branching within states, inhibiting competition, the most powerful defense against discrimination. With such regulatory protection, savings banks could make a comfortable profit without doing the hard work of finding out which inner-city neighborhoods and borrowers were good risks and which were not. Savings banks also had reason to worry that if they charged inner-city borrowers a higher rate of interest to balance the additional risk of such lending, they might jeopardize the protection from competition they enjoyed. Thanks to these artificially created conditions, some redlining of creditworthy borrowers doubtless occurred.

The insular world of the savings banks collapsed in the early nineties, however, the moment it was exposed to competition. Banking today is a far more wide-open industry, with banks offering mortgages through the Internet, where they compete hotly with aggressive online mortgage companies. Standardized, computer-based scoring systems now rate the creditworthiness of applicants, and the giant, government-chartered Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have helped create huge pools of credit by purchasing mortgage loans and packaging large numbers of them together into securities for sale to bond buyers. With such intense competition for profits and so much money available to lend, it's hard to imagine that banks couldn't instantly figure out how to market to minorities or would resist such efforts for fear of inspiring imitators. Nor has the race discrimination argument for CRA held up. A September 1999 study by Freddie Mac, for instance, confirmed what previous Federal Reserve and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation studies had found: that African-Americans have disproportionate levels of credit problems, which explains why they have a harder time qualifying for mortgage money. As Freddie Mac found, blacks with incomes of $65,000 to $75,000 a year have on average worse credit records than whites making under $25,000.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas had it right when it said—in a paper pointedly entitled "Red Lining or Red Herring?"—"the CRA may not be needed in today's financial environment to ensure all segments of our economy enjoy access to credit." True, some households—those with a history of credit problems, for instance, or those buying homes in neighborhoods where re-selling them might be difficult—may not qualify for loans at all, and some may have to pay higher interest rates, in reflection of higher risk. But higher rates in such situations are balanced by lower house prices. This is not a conspiracy against the poor; it's how markets measure risk and work to make credit available.

Nevertheless, until recently, the CRA didn't matter all that much. During the seventies and eighties, CRA enforcement was perfunctory. Regulators asked banks to demonstrate that they were trying to reach their entire "assessment area" by advertising in minority-oriented newspapers or by sending their executives to serve on the boards of local community groups. The Clinton administration changed this state of affairs dramatically. Ignoring the sweeping transformation of the banking industry since the CRA was passed, the Clinton Treasury Department's 1995 regulations made getting a satisfactory CRA rating much harder. The new regulations de-emphasized subjective assessment measures in favor of strictly numerical ones. Bank examiners would use federal home-loan data, broken down by neighborhood, income group, and race, to rate banks on performance. There would be no more A's for effort. Only results—specific loans, specific levels of service—would count. Where and to whom have home loans been made? Have banks invested in all neighborhoods within their assessment area? Do they operate branches in those neighborhoods?

Crucially, the new CRA regulations also instructed bank examiners to take into account how well banks responded to complaints. The old CRA evaluation process had allowed advocacy groups a chance to express their views on individual banks, and publicly available data on the lending patterns of individual banks allowed activist groups to target institutions considered vulnerable to protest. But for advocacy groups that were in the complaint business, the Clinton administration regulations offered a formal invitation. The National Community Reinvestment Coalition—a foundation-funded umbrella group for community activist groups that profit from the CRA—issued a clarion call to its members in a leaflet entitled "The New CRA Regulations: How Community Groups Can Get Involved." "Timely comments," the NCRC observed with a certain understatement, "can have a strong influence on a bank's CRA rating."

The Clinton administration's get-tough regulatory regime mattered so crucially because bank deregulation had set off a wave of mega-mergers, including the acquisition of the Bank of America by NationsBank, BankBoston by Fleet Financial, and Bankers Trust by Deutsche Bank. Regulatory approval of such mergers depended, in part, on positive CRA ratings. "To avoid the possibility of a denied or delayed application," advises the NCRC in its deadpan tone, "lending institutions have an incentive to make formal agreements with community organizations." By intervening—even just threatening to intervene—in the CRA review process, left-wing nonprofit groups have been able to gain control over eye-popping pools of bank capital, which they in turn parcel out to individual low-income mortgage seekers. A radical group called ACORN Housing has a $760 million commitment from the Bank of New York; the Boston-based Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America has a $3-billion agreement with the Bank of America; a coalition of groups headed by New Jersey Citizen Action has a five-year, $13-billion agreement with First Union Corporation. Similar deals operate in almost every major U.S. city. Observes Tom Callahan, executive director of the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance, which has $220 million in bank mortgage money to parcel out, "CRA is the backbone of everything we do."

In addition to providing the nonprofits with mortgage money to disburse, CRA allows those organizations to collect a fee from the banks for their services in marketing the loans. The Senate Banking Committee has estimated that, as a result of CRA, $9.5 billion so far has gone to pay for services and salaries of the nonprofit groups involved. To deal with such groups and to produce CRA compliance data for regulators, banks routinely establish separate CRA departments. A CRA consultant industry has sprung up to assist them. New financial-services firms offer to help banks that think they have a CRA problem make quick "investments" in packaged portfolios of CRA loans to get into compliance.

The result of all this activity, argues the CEO of one midsize bank, is that "banks are promising to make loans they would have made anyway, with some extra aggressiveness on risky mortgages thrown in." Many bankers—and even some CRA advocates—share his view. As one Fed economist puts it, the assertion that CRA was needed to force banks to see profitable lending opportunities is "like saying you need the rooster to tell the sun to come up. It was going to happen anyway." And indeed, a survey of the lending policies of Chicago-area mortgage companies by a CRA-connected community group, the Woodstock Institute, found "a tendency to lend in a wide variety of neighborhoods"—even though the CRA doesn't apply to such lenders.

If loans that win banks good CRA ratings were going to be made anyway, and if most of those loans are profitable, should CRA, even if redundant, bother anyone? Yes: because the CRA funnels billions of investment dollars through groups that understand protest and political advocacy but not marketing or finance. This amateur delivery system for investment capital already shows signs that it may be going about its business unwisely. And a quiet change in CRA's mission—so that it no longer directs credit only to specific places, as Congress mandated, but also to low- and moderate-income home buyers, wherever they buy their property—greatly extends the area where these groups can cause damage.

There is no more important player in the CRA-inspired mortgage industry than the Boston-based Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America. Chief executive Bruce Marks has set out to become the Wal-Mart of home mortgages for lower-income households. Using churches and radio advertising to reach borrowers, he has made NACA a brand name nationwide, with offices in 21 states, and he plans to double that number within a year. With "delegated underwriting authority" from the banks, NACA itself—not the banks—determines whether a mortgage applicant is qualified, and it closes sales right in its own offices. It expects to close 5,000 mortgages next year, earning a $2,000 origination fee on each. Its annual budget exceeds $10 million.

Marks, a Scarsdale native, NYU MBA, and former Federal Reserve employee, unabashedly calls himself a "bank terrorist"—his public relations spokesman laughingly refers to him as "the shark, the predator," and the NACA newspaper is named the Avenger. They're not kidding: bankers so fear the tactically brilliant Marks for his ability to disrupt annual meetings and even target bank executives' homes that they often call him to make deals before they announce any plans that will put them in CRA's crosshairs. A $3 billion loan commitment by Nationsbank, for instance, well in advance of its announced merger with Bank of America, "was a preventive strike," says one NACA spokesman.

Marks is unhesitatingly candid about his intent to use NACA to promote an activist, left-wing political agenda. NACA loan applicants must attend a workshop that celebrates—to the accompaniment of gospel music—the protests that have helped the group win its bank lending agreements. If applicants do buy a home through NACA, they must pledge to assist the organization in five "actions" annually—anything from making phone calls to full-scale "mobilizations" against target banks, "mau-mauing" them, as sixties' radicals used to call it. "NACA believes in aggressive grassroots advocacy," says its Homebuyer's Workbook.

The NACA policy agenda embraces the whole universe of financial institutions. It advocates tough federal usury laws, restrictions on the information that banks can provide to credit-rating services, financial sanctions against banks with poor CRA ratings even if they're not about to merge or branch, and the extension of CRA requirements to insurance companies and other financial institutions. But Marks's political agenda reaches far beyond finance. He wants, he says, to do whatever he can to ensure that "working people have good jobs at good wages." The home mortgage business is his tool for political organizing: the Homebuyer's Workbook contains a voter registration application and states that "NACA's mission of neighborhood stabilization is based on participation in the political process. To participate you must register to vote." Marks plans to install a high-capacity phone system that can forward hundreds of calls to congressional offices—"or Phil Gramm's house"—to buttress NACA campaigns. The combination of an army of "volunteers" and a voter registration drive portends (though there is no evidence of this so far) that someday CRA-related funds and Marks's troop of CRA borrowers might end up fueling a host of Democratic candidacies. During the Reagan years, the Right used to talk of cutting off the flow of federal funds to left-liberal groups, a goal called "defunding the Left"; through the CRA, the Clinton administration has found a highly effective way of doing exactly the opposite, funneling millions to NACA or to outfits like ACORN, which advocates a nationalized health-care system, "people before profits at the utilities," and a tax code based "solely on the ability to pay."

Whatever his long-term political goals, Marks may well reshape urban and suburban neighborhoods because of the terms on which NACA qualifies prospective home buyers. While most CRA-supported borrowers would doubtless find loans in today's competitive mortgage industry, a small percentage would not, and NACA welcomes such buyers with open arms. "Our job," says Marks, "is to push the envelope." Accordingly, he gladly lends to people with less than $3,000 in savings, or with checkered credit histories or significant debt. Many of his borrowers are single-parent heads of household. Such borrowers are, Marks believes, fundamentally oppressed and at permanent disadvantage, and therefore society must adjust its rules for them. Hence, NACA's most crucial policy decision: it requires no down payments whatsoever from its borrowers. A down-payment requirement, based on concern as to whether a borrower can make payments, is—when applied to low-income minority buyers—"patronizing and almost racist," Marks says.

This policy—"America's best mortgage program for working people," NACA calls it—is an experiment with extraordinarily high risks. There is no surer way to destabilize a neighborhood than for its new generation of home buyers to lack the means to pay their mortgages—which is likely to be the case for a significant percentage of those granted a no-down-payment mortgage based on their low-income classification rather than their good credit history. Even if such buyers do not lose their homes, they are a group more likely to defer maintenance on their properties, creating the problems that lead to streets going bad and neighborhoods going downhill. Stable or increasing property values grow out of the efforts of many; one unpainted house, one sagging porch, one abandoned property is a threat to the work of dozens, because such signs of neglect discourage prospective buyers.

A no-down-payment policy reflects a belief that poor families should qualify for home ownership because they are poor, in contrast to the reality that some poor families are prepared to make the sacrifices necessary to own property, and some are not. Keeping their distance from those unable to save money is a crucial means by which upwardly mobile, self-sacrificing people establish and maintain the value of the homes they buy. If we empower those with bad habits, or those who have made bad decisions, to follow those with good habits to better neighborhoods—thanks to CRA's new emphasis on lending to low-income borrowers no matter where they buy their homes—those neighborhoods will not remain better for long.

Because many of the activists' big-money deals with the banks are so new, no one knows for sure exactly which neighborhoods the community groups are flooding with CRA-related mortgages and what effect they are having on those neighborhoods. But some suggestive early returns are available from Massachusetts, where CRA-related advocacy has flourished for more than a decade. A study for a consortium of banks and community groups found that during the 1990s home purchases financed by nonprofit lenders have overwhelmingly not been in the inner-city areas where redlining had been suspected. Instead, 41 percent of all the loans went to the lower-middle-class neighborhoods of Hyde Park, Roslindale, and Dorchester Center/Codman Square—Boston's equivalent of New York's borough of Queens—and additional loans went to borrowers moving to the suburbs. In other words, CRA lending appears to be helping borrowers move out of inner-city neighborhoods into better-off areas. Similarly, not-yet-published data from the state-funded Massachusetts Housing Partnership show that many new Dorchester Center, Roslindale, and Hyde Park home buyers came from much poorer parts of the city, such as the Roxbury ghetto. Florence Higgins, a home-ownership counsellor for the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance, confirms the trend, noting that many buyers she counsels lived in subsidized rental apartments prior to buying their homes.

This CRA-facilitated migration makes the mortgage terms of groups like NACA particularly troubling. In a September 1999 story, the Wall Street Journal reported, based on a review of court documents by Boston real estate analyst John Anderson, that the Fleet Bank initiated foreclosure proceedings against 4 percent of loans made for Fleet by NACA in 1994 and 1995—a rate four times the industry average. Overextended buyers don't always get much help from their nonprofit intermediaries, either: Boston radio station WBUR reported in July that home buyers in danger of losing their homes had trouble getting their phone calls returned by the ACORN Housing group.

NACA frankly admits that it is willing to run these risks. It emphasizes the virtues of the counselling programs it offers (like all CRA groups) to prepare its typical buyer—"a hotel worker with an income of $25K and probably some past credit problems," says a NACA spokesman—and it operates what it calls a "neighborhood stabilization fund" on which buyers who fall behind on payments can draw. But Bruce Marks says that he would consider a low foreclosure rate to be a problem. "If we had a foreclosure rate of 1 percent, that would just prove we were skimming," he says. Accordingly, in mid-1999, 8.2 percent of the mortgages NACA had arranged with the Fleet Bank were delinquent, compared with the national average of 1.9 percent. "Considering our clientele," Marks asserts, "nine out of ten would have to be considered a success."

The no-down-payment policy has sparked so sharp a division within the CRA industry that the National Community Reinvestment Coalition has expelled Bruce Marks and NACA from its ranks over it. The precipitating incident: when James Johnson, then CEO of Fannie Mae, made a speech to NCRC members on the importance of down payments to keep mortgage-backed securities easily salable, NACA troops, in keeping with the group's style of personalizing disputes, distributed pictures of Johnson, captioned: "I make $6 million a year, and I can afford a down payment. Why can't you?" Says Josh Silver, research director of NCRC: "There is no quicker way to undermine CRA than through bad loans." NCRC represents hundreds of smallish community groups, many of which do insist on down payments—and many of which make loans in the same neighborhoods as NACA and understand the risk its philosophy poses. Still, whenever NACA opens a new branch office, it will be difficult for the nonprofits already operating in that area to avoid matching its come-one, come-all terms.

Even without a no-down-payment policy, the pressure on banks to make CRA-related loans may be leading to foreclosures. Though bankers generally cheerlead for CRA out of fear of being branded racists if they do not, the CEO of one midsize bank grumbles that 20 percent of his institution's CRA-related mortgages, which required only $500 down payments, were delinquent in their very first year, and probably 7 percent will end in foreclosure. "The problem with CRA," says an executive with a major national financial-services firm, "is that banks will simply throw money at things because they want that CRA rating." From the banks' point of view, CRA lending is simply a price of doing business—even if some of the mortgages must be written off. The growth in very large banks—ones most likely to sign major CRA agreements—also means that those advancing the funds for CRA loans are less likely to have to worry about the effects of those loans going bad: such loans will be a small portion of their lending portfolios.

Looking into the future gives further cause for concern: "The bulk of these loans," notes a Federal Reserve economist, "have been made during a period in which we have not experienced an economic downturn." The Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America's own success stories make you wonder how much CRA-related carnage will result when the economy cools. The group likes to promote, for instance, the story of Renea Swain-Price, grateful for NACA's negotiating on her behalf with Fleet Bank to prevent foreclosure when she fell behind on a $1,400 monthly mortgage payment on her three-family house in Dorchester. Yet NACA had no qualms about arranging the $137,500 mortgage in the first place, notwithstanding the fact that Swain-Price's husband was in prison, that she'd had previous credit problems, and that the monthly mortgage payment constituted more than half her monthly salary. The fact that NACA has arranged an agreement to forestall foreclosure does not inspire confidence that she will have the resources required to maintain her aging frame house: her new monthly payment, in recognition of previously missed payments, is $1,879.

Even if all the CRA-related loans marketed by nonprofits were to turn out fine, the CRA system is still troubling. Like affirmative action, it robs the creditworthy of the certain knowledge that they have qualified by dint of their own effort for a first home mortgage, a milestone in any family's life. At the same time, it sends the message that this most important milestone has been provided through the beneficence of government, devaluing individual accomplishment. Perhaps the Clinton White House sees this as a costless way to use the banking system to create a new crop of passionate Democratic loyalists, convinced that CRA has delivered them from an uncaring Mammon—when, in all likelihood, banks would have been eager to have most of them as customers, regulation or no.

CRA also serves to enforce misguided views about how cities should develop, or redevelop. Consider the "investment" criterion—the loans to commercial borrowers rather than individual home buyers—that constitutes 25 percent of the record on which banks are judged in their compliance review. The Comptroller of the Currency's office makes clear that it is not interested in just any sort of investment in so-called underserved neighborhoods. Investment in a new apartment building or shopping center might not count, if it would help change a poor neighborhood into a more prosperous one, or if it is not directly aimed at serving those of low income. Regulators want banks to invest in housing developments built through nonprofit community development corporations. Banks not only receive CRA credit for such "investment"—which they can make anywhere in the country, not just in their backyard—but they also receive corporate tax credits for it, through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit. Banks have little incentive to make sure such projects are well managed, since they get their tax credits and CRA credits up front.

This investment policy misunderstands what is good for cities and for the poor. Cities that are alive are cities in flux, with neighborhoods rising and falling, as tastes and economies change. This ceaseless flux is a process, as Jane Jacobs brilliantly described it in The Economy of Cities, that fuels investment, creates jobs, and sparks innovative adaptation of older buildings to new purposes. Those of modest means benefit both from the new jobs and from being able to rent or purchase homes in once-expensive neighborhoods that take on new roles. The idea that it is necessary to flash-freeze certain neighborhoods and set them aside for the poor threatens to disrupt urban vitality and the renewal that comes from the individual plans and efforts of a city's people.

But keeping these neighborhoods forever poor is the CRA vision. CRA will help virtually any lower-income family that can come close to affording a mortgage payment to purchase a home, often in a non-poor neighborhood. Thanks to CRA-driven bank investment, poor neighborhoods would then fill up with subsidized rental complexes, presumably for those poor families who can't earn enough even to get a subsidized, easy credit mortgage. The effects of all this could be to undermine lower-middle-class neighborhoods by introducing families not prepared for home ownership into them and to leave behind poor neighborhoods in which low-income apartments, filled with the worst-off and least competent, stand alone—hardly a recipe for renewal.

Here is your answer STEVE6

It will take a Republican president to change or abolish CRA, so firmly wedded to it is the Clinton administration and so powerfully does it serve Democratic Party interests. When Senator Gramm attacked the CRA for its role in funding advocacy groups and for the burden it imposes on banks, the Clinton administration fought back furiously, willing to let the crucial Financial Services Modernization Act, to which Gramm had attached his CRA changes, die, unless Gramm dropped demands that, for instance, CRA reviews become less frequent. In the end, Gramm, despite his key position as the chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs (even the committee's name reflects a CRA consciousness) and his willingness to hold repeal of the Glass-Steagal Act hostage to CRA reform, could only manage to require community groups to make public their agreements with banks, disclosing the size of their loan commitments and fees.

A new president should push for outright abolition of the CRA. Failing that, he could simply instruct the Treasury to roll back the compliance criteria to their more relaxed, pre-Clintonian level. But to make the case for repeal—and ensure that some future Democratic president couldn't simply reimpose Clinton's rules—he might test the basic premise of the Community Reinvestment Act: that the banking industry serves the rich, not the poor. He could carry out a controlled experiment requiring no CRA lending in six Federal Reserve districts, while CRA remains in force in six others. A comparison of lending records would show whether there is any real case for CRA. In addition, CRA regulators should require nonprofit groups with large CRA-related loan commitments to track and report foreclosure and delinquency rates. For it is these that will reflect the true threat that CRA poses, a threat to the health of cities.


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You gotta love this. Didn't Pelosi say they was going to clean up the house?

http://johninnorthcarolina.blogspot.com/20...n-up-house.html

How about this CONFLICT of INTEREST

Barney Frank Hit Over Boyfriend’s Fannie Mae Role

Critics are crying “conflict of interest” over Democratic Rep. Barney Frank’s live-in relationship with Fannie Mae executive Herb Moses while Frank was on the House Banking Committee.

Moses was Fannie Mae’s assistant director for product initiatives from 1991 to 1998.

He was also openly *smurf* Frank’s live-in boyfriend during that time, while the Massachusetts lawmaker was on the committee that had jurisdiction over government-sponsored Fannie Mae, Fox News’ Bill Sammon reported.

Now that Fannie Mae is at the center of the recent financial meltdown, the relationship is coming under increased scrutiny.

“It’s absolutely a conflict,” said Dan Gainor, vice president of the Business & Media Institute.

“He was voting on Fannie Mae at a time when he was involved with a Fannie Mae executive. How is that not germane?

“But everyone wants to avoid it because he’s *smurf*. It’s the quintessential double standard.”

A top Republican House aide told Fox News: “He writes housing and banking laws and his boyfriend is a top exec at a firm that stands to gain from those laws? No media ever take note?”

Frank and Moses met in 1987 and lived together in Washington, D.C., until they split up in 1998.

National Mortgage News disclosed that Moses “helped develop many of Fannie Mae’s affordable housing and home improvement lending programs.”

Critics charge that such programs led to the mortgage meltdown and the recent government takeover of Fannie Mae, according to Fox News, which noted that Fannie Mae and its financial cousin Freddie Mac “are blamed for spreading bad mortgages throughout the private financial sector.”

In 1994, Frank thwarted efforts by President Clinton’s Department of Housing and Urban Development to impose new regulations on Fannie Mae

Barney Frank and the Male Prostitute – 1989

The era of sour feelings on Capitol Hill continued after House Speaker James. C. Wright's resignation and the smear campaign against his successor, Thomas S. Foley. In a third blockbuster scandal, Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Barney Frank admitted a lengthy relationship with a male hooker who ran a bisexual prostitution service out of Frank's apartment.

The story was broken by the conservative Washington Times newspaper, which trumpeted every juicy morsel with front-page hype. Though Frank was apparently ignorant of some of the prostitute's activities, his indiscretion was so great that his standing in Congress was greatly damaged and a House reprimand passed overwhelmingly in July 1990. His home district in Massachusetts was more forgiving, reelecting him easily the following November

How does he remain a Senator?

'Mayflower Madam' Gave Gobie Idea

By Bill Dedman

Washington Post Staff Writer

August 27, 1989

Prostitute and pimp Stephen L. Gobie settled in with his "girls" in his Georgetown town house one evening in late 1987 to watch "The Mayflower Madam" on television. As Candice Bergen portrayed upscale madam Sydney Biddle Barrows, Gobie's companions had an idea.

"The girls turned to me and said, 'You're just like her,' " Gobie recalled in an interview yesterday. "That's when I realized that I was in the middle of a developing story that could be worth something someday. I told them, 'One day, don't be surprised if you see me on TV.' "

Gobie's dream has come true. His accusation that Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) knew that Gobie had operated a prostitution service out of Frank's Capitol Hill apartment became national news after it was first reported Friday by the Washington Times.

Frank, one of two openly *smurf* members of Congress, confirmed Friday that he paid Gobie for sex, hired him with personal funds as an aide and wrote letters on congressional stationery on his behalf to Virginia probation officials, but Frank said he fired Gobie when he learned that clients were visiting the apartment.

Frank, a leading House liberal, likened himself to Henry Higgins, who in "Pygmalion" tries to transform a cockney waif into a member of English society. Gobie dismissed that as "garbage." "This is not the case of the poor waif who is being sheltered," Gobie said. "This was the first time he felt good in a relationship. Here's a guy who didn't have a social life until he was 45."

Gobie's craving for public attention also has produced an uproar in Montgomery County. Gobie said he maintained a relationship with Gabriel A. Massaro, the principal of Chevy Chase Elementary School, and used an office at the school in late 1987 to make telephone calls and have one client meet a prostitute.

Massaro, who has been placed on administrative leave, has been unavailable for comment.

Gobie said his motive was largely financial. Gobie had offered his story to WUSA-TV (Channel 9), then the Washington Times. Later he came to The Washington Post, saying he was looking "to start a bidding war" for "a better offer" than the Washington Times made. He and the Times say he was not paid.

Gobie also said he wants "to show up people in positions of power who abuse other people."

Gobie expressed no regret for any damage done to the careers of Frank and Massaro.

Although Frank and Gobie differ in some details of their relationship, they agree on the story line. They met on April Fool's Day 1985. The representative answered a classified ad in the Washington Blade, the local *smurf* weekly. "Exceptionally good-looking, personable, muscular athlete is available. Hot bottom plus large endowment equals a good time."

Then in his third term, the 45-year-old representative had not yet stated his homosexuality publicly. He paid Gobie $80 in cash for sex.

Gobie, then 28, was one of many young men "freelancing" in male prostitution. Gobie said he was born in Boston and grew up in a military family. He has felony convictions for possession of cocaine, oral sodomy and production of obscene items involving a juvenile.

Gobie and Frank say they became more friends than sexual partners. Gobie says he attended a bill-signing at the White House, and helped coach and played left field for Frank's team in the Congressional Softball League. "I was the star player," Gobie said.

Frank began to help Gobie financially, paying his attorney and court-ordered psychiatrist. The House member also said he hired Gobie as a personal aide, housekeeper and driver, but Gobie said that was a "cover story" concocted for probation officers.

In late 1985, Gobie says, he began to use Frank's apartment and two other locations for prostitution. Frank knew about the prostitution all along, but it was never explicitly discussed, Gobie says.

"He knew exactly what I was doing," Gobie said. "It was pretty obvious. If he had to come home early {from work}, he would call home to be sure the coast was clear . . . . He was living vicariously through me. He said it was kind of a thrill, and if he had been 20 years younger he might be doing the same thing."

Frank denies that he knew, saying he learned from his landlord and kicked Gobie out in August 1987. Gobie supports this part of Frank's story.

Gobie said his disclosures are only beginning. "I think I'll just slap a book together. Sydney Biddle Barrows made in excess of a million. I thought 'Capitol Offenses' would be a nice title."

© 1996 The Washington Post Co.


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Has anyone noticed that that Clinton has been on TV saying that HE called for more oversite on Fannie Mae?

No, but I've not yet noticed anyone less truthful than Bill Clinton. Well, of course, not until the "One Who Must Not Be Criticized (because of race?)" came along. <sigh>

Regards,

Warren


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There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved. - Ludwig von Mises

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Nothing personal Mike, but that which is best said is better said briefly.

Regards,

Warren

EDIT: Give me a pull-quote, a quick synopsis, and a source. I'll do the rest. Thanks.


Posted Image

There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved. - Ludwig von Mises

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Have we politically corrected ourselves to the place were we dare not challenge foolhardy proposals rather than be labeled racist?

Go ahead and label me. It won't affect my vote.


Jim

Drive your car.

Use your cell phone.

CHOOSE ONE !

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Have we politically corrected ourselves to the place were we dare not challenge foolhardy proposals rather than be labeled racist?

Go ahead and label me. It won't affect my vote.

It is, however, a sterling good ploy, is it not? :bsmeter:


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There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved. - Ludwig von Mises

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We are members of the same choir.

And tonight, this Cowboys fan is also a Cleveland Browns fan!


Jim

Drive your car.

Use your cell phone.

CHOOSE ONE !

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We are members of the same choir.

And tonight, this Cowboys fan is also a Cleveland Browns fan!

Speak for yourself. I haven't yet been neutered!

Regards,

Warren :D


Posted Image

There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved. - Ludwig von Mises

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Nothing personal Mike, but that which is best said is better said briefly.

Regards,

Warren

EDIT: Give me a pull-quote, a quick synopsis, and a source. I'll do the rest. Thanks.

Brief? CNN and MSNBC provide brief. Detail takes space and explanation. Keep in mind that I used to write 100 page reports on commercial real estate properties, I love details.

"Personally everytime I delve into this stuff, I am SHOCKED at how unethical and self serving the Democrats are, they are detestable, and that the press supports them, well, I don't have any words for that..., their stock price and earnings is in the process of taking care of that"

I am sitting here watching CNN with John Roberts and Susan Malveaux and the arrogance and slant is stomach turning, they are SO bias. They say that McCain needs to turn things around and that his campaign is too negaitve what BS. I can't watch this garbage.


Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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Nothing personal Mike, but that which is best said is better said briefly.

Regards,

Warren

EDIT: Give me a pull-quote, a quick synopsis, and a source. I'll do the rest. Thanks.

Brief? CNN and MSNBC provide brief. Detail takes space and explanation. Keep in mind that I used to write 100 page reports on commercial real estate properties, I love details.

"Personally everytime I delve into this stuff, I am SHOCKED at how unethical and self serving the Democrats are, they are detestable, and that the press supports them, well, I don't have any words for that..., their stock price and earnings is in the process of taking care of that"

I am sitting here watching CNN with John Roberts and Susan Malveaux and the arrogance and slant is stomach turning, they are SO bias. They say that McCain needs to turn things around and that his campaign is too negaitve what BS. I can't watch this garbage.

If only I could touch-type . . . :D


Posted Image

There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved. - Ludwig von Mises

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