Skip to comments.Resurrect the Resolution Trust Corp.
Posted on 09/19/2008 1:06:29 AM PDT by Freedom_Is_Not_Free
We are in the midst of the worst financial turmoil since the Great Depression. Absent bold action, matters could well get worse.
Neither the markets nor the ordinary diet of regulatory orders, bank examinations, rating downgrades and investigations can do the job. Extraordinary emergency actions by the Federal Reserve and the Treasury to date, while necessary, are also insufficient to resolve the crisis.
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the giants in the mortgage market, are overextended and now under new government protection. They are not in sufficiently robust shape to meet all the market's needs.
The fact is that the financial system needs basic, long-term reform, but right now the system is clogged with enormous amounts of toxic real-estate paper that will not repay according to its terms. This paper, in turn, is unable to support huge quantities of structured financial instruments, levered as much as 30 times.
Until there is a new mechanism in place to remove this decaying tissue from the system, the infection will spread, confidence will deteriorate further, and we will have to live through the mother of all credit contractions. This contraction will undercut the financial system, and with it, the broader economy that so far has held up reasonably well.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
“Worst since the Great Depression”
There is no way to spin this one.
It is going get very ugly.
“CAPITALISM IS DEAD!”
For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
June 17, 2002
President Calls for Expanding Opportunities to Home Ownership
Remarks by the President on Homeownership
St. Paul AME Church
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you all very much for that wonderful Atlanta welcome. It’s nice to be back in this incredibly important community.
You know, our nation faces a lot of huge challenges. Right now, we’ve got 60,000 troops fighting terrorism so that we can be free, all of us can be free. I appreciate so very much the resolve and unity and determination of this great land. I appreciate our military for their sacrifices. We’re also doing everything we can to secure the homeland, to make sure that those who hate us won’t take innocent life again. And as we work for a more secure world, we’ve got to work for a better world, too. (Applause.) And that means as we work on our security from possible attacks by terrorists, we also work on economic security. The two securities go hand in hand. Anybody who wants a job who can’t find one means we’ve got a problem. In Washington, they talk statistics all the time, and that’s important — people who count numbers need to make a living, too. (Laughter and applause.)
But my attitude is, if somebody can’t find work and they want to work, we’ve got to continue to work on expanding the job base. And part of economic security is owning your own home. (Applause.) Part of being a secure America is to encourage homeownership. So somebody can say, this is my home, welcome to my home.
Now, we’ve got a problem here in America that we have to address. Too many American families, too many minorities do not own a home. There is a home ownership gap in America. The difference between Anglo America and African American and Hispanic home ownership is too big. (Applause.) And we’ve got to focus the attention on this nation to address this.
And it starts with setting a goal. And so by the year 2010, we must increase minority home owners by at least 5.5 million. In order to close the homeownership gap, we’ve got to set a big goal for America, and focus our attention and resources on that goal. (Applause.)
And I picked a good man to help realize that goal, in Mel Martinez. I don’t know if you know Mel’s story, but — (applause) — it’s an interesting story. Mel was born in Cuba. (Applause.) Yes. Mel brought his cousins with him. (Laughter.) All two of them, anyway. (Laughter and applause.)
But Mel’s mother and daddy — Mel’s mother and dad put him on an airplane to come to America when he was a young boy, because they didn’t want his son growing up in a country that wasn’t free. Think about that, think about the courage of a mom or a dad, and their love for freedom — love freedom so much, they had put their child in the hands of loving Americans, and mom and dad eventually came. And here he now sits, as a member of the President’s Cabinet. What a great country we have. (Applause.)
My point is, Mel understands what it means to dream, and then to work to realize the dreams. I’ve also picked a fine friend of mine from Texas, named Alphonso Jackson, to serve as the Deputy of HUD. And where are you, Alphonso? There he is; I appreciate you. (Applause.) These are can-do people. So when we set a goal, they understand their job is to work toward that goal.
I also want to thank the Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia, Shirley Franklin, thank you for coming Madam Mayor. (Applause.) Much of the success of this program is going to depend — depends upon the ability for the federal government to work with state and local governments. And I know the Mayor has got a strong commitment to housing for all people, and to end the ownership gap. Madam Mayor, thanks for coming.
I appreciate as well Johnny Isakson and John Linder, members of the Georgia congressional delegation for coming today. Thank you all for being here. (Applause.) I want to thank Franklin Raines, of Fannie Mae and Leland Brendsel of Freddie Mac. Thank you all for coming. (Applause.)
Today I had the pleasure of seeing an entrepreneur’s work first-hand. An Atlanta citizen who also dreamt a dream, and that is to develop a piece of blighted property, so others could benefit from her vision and hard work. Masharn Wilson is here. (Applause.) She is a President and CEO — Masharn is the President and CEO of her own company. Part of the economic security is not only owning a home, part of it is if you have the entrepreneurial instincts is to own your own business, as well. (Applause.) So I want to appreciate you, Masharn. I appreciate your hard work.
And one other person I want to announce is a fellow named Darryl Hicks. Where are you, Darryl?
MR. HICKS: Right here.
THE PRESIDENT: There you are. Darryl Hicks is here. I want to — Darryl is — one of the things I remind our fellow citizens, if you’re interested in defeating evil, do some good. You see, we’re going to fight with our military, but we can also fight with our hearts. And a country which has been under attack can respond by loving your neighbor like you’d like to be loved yourself.
And this man right here is a fellow — Darryl Hicks — who works for Habitat for Humanity programs. He’s interested in lending his heart and his talents to helping a neighbor in need. America can be changed one heart, one soul, one conscience at a time, so long as we are willing to love a neighbor like we’d like to be loved ourselves. (Applause.)
I want to thank you, Darryl. I want to thank Darryl for being a soldier in the army of compassion. And I also want to thank Reverend Dr. Thomas Bess for opening up this beautiful church. You know, one of my passions is the faith-based initiative. It is important that Congress not fear faith-based programs, but welcome faith-based programs, so we can help change people’s lives. (Applause.)
I find it most interesting that we would be talking about how we help people in a church. After all, that’s why churches exist.
THE PRESIDENT: And so I am — I want to thank the church staff for opening up this beautiful facility to the army which follows me around. (Laughter.)
I do believe in the American Dream. I believe there is such a thing as the American Dream. And I believe those of us who have been given positions of responsibility must do everything we can to spotlight the dream and to make sure the dream shines in all neighborhoods, all throughout our country. Owning a home is a part of that dream, it just is. Right here in America if you own your own home, you’re realizing the American Dream.
You know, today I went to the — to some of the home — met some of the homeowners in this newly built homes and all you’ve got to do is shake their hand and listen to their stories and watch the pride that they exhibit when they show you the kitchen and the stairs — so people like Ken Beatty, who is an environmentalist; or Al Smith, a probation officer; or Geary Jefferson a data base administrator; or Darrin West, an Atlanta police officer, Tamika Henry — Tomika Henry Cole.
These are all people that I’ve met; they’ve come over here today. They showed me their home. They didn’t show me somebody else’s home, they showed me their home. And they are so proud to own their home and I want to thank them for their hospitality, because it helps the American people really understand what it means.
And what we’ve got to do is to figure out how to make sure these stories are repeated over and over and over again in America. Three-quarters of white America owns their homes. Less than 50 percent of African Americans are part of the homeownership in America. And less than 50 percent of the Hispanics who live here in this country own their home. And that has got to change for the good of the country. It just does. (Applause.)
And so here are some of the ways to address the issue. First, the single greatest barrier to first time homeownership is a high downpayment. It is really hard for many, many, low income families to make the high downpayment. And so that’s why I propose and urge Congress to fully fund the American Dream Downpayment Fund. This will use money, taxpayers’ money to help a qualified, low income buyer make a downpayment. And that’s important.
One of the barriers to homeownership is the inability to make a downpayment. And if one of the goals is to increase homeownership, it makes sense to help people pay that downpayment. We believe that the amount of money in our budget, fully approved by Congress, will help 40,000 families every year realize the dream of owning a home. (Applause.) Part of the success of Park Place is that the city of Atlanta already does this. And we want to make the plan more robust. We want to make it more full all across America.
Secondly, there is a lack of affordable housing in certain neighborhoods. Too many neighborhoods, especially in inner city America, lack affordable housing units. How can you promote homeownership if people can’t afford a home?
And so what I’ve done is propose what we call a Single Family Affordable Housing Tax Credit, to encourage the development of affordable housing in neighborhoods where housing is scarce. (Applause.) Over five years, the initiative amounts to $2.4 billion in tax credits. And that will help. It will help a lot to build homes where people can — where when fully implemented, people will be able to say, I own my home.
A third major barrier is the complexity and difficulty of the home buying process. There’s a lot of fine print on these forms. And it bothers people, it makes them nervous. And so therefore, what Mel has agreed to do, and Alphonso Jackson has agreed to do is to streamline the process, make the rules simpler, so everybody understands what they are — makes the closing much less complicated.
We certainly don’t want there to be a fine print preventing people from owning their home. We can change the print, and we’ve got to. We’ve got to be wise about how we deal with the closing documents and all the regulations, but also wise about how we help people understand what it means to own their home and the obligations and the opportunities.
And so, therefore, education is a critical component of increasing ownership throughout America. Financial education, housing counseling, how to help people understand that there are unscrupulous lenders. And so one of the things we’re going to do is we’re going to promote education, the education of owning a home, the education of buying a home throughout our society. And we want to fully implement the Section 8 housing program, homeownership program. The program will provide vouchers that first-time home buyers can use to help pay their mortgage or apply to their downpayment.
Many of the partners today, many of the people here today, many of the business leaders here today are creating a market for the mortgages where Section 8 vouchers are a source of the payment. And that’s good — see, it’s an underpinning of capital. It helps move capital to where we want capital to go.
And so these are important initiatives that we can do at the federal government. And the federal government, obviously, has to play an important role, and we will. We will. I mean, when I lay out a goal, I mean it. But we also have got to bring others into the process, most particularly the real estate industry. After all, the real estate industry benefits when people are encouraged to buy homes. It’s in their self interest that we encourage people to buy homes. (Applause.)
And so one of the things that I’m going to talk about a little bit today is how to create a sustained commitment by the private sector that will have a powerful impact. First of all, we want to make sure that we help work to expand capital available to buyers, and as I mentioned, overcome the barriers that I’ve delineated, as well as provide the education component. In other words, this is not just a federal responsibility.
That’s why I’ve challenged the industry leaders all across the country to get after it for this goal, to stay focused, to make sure that we achieve a more secure America, by achieving the goal of 5.5 million new minority home owners. I call it America’s home ownership challenge.
And let me talk about some of the progress which we have made to date, as an example for others to follow. First of all, government sponsored corporations that help create our mortgage system — I introduced two of the leaders here today — they call those people Fannie May and Freddie Mac, as well as the federal home loan banks, will increase their commitment to minority markets by more than $440 billion. (Applause.) I want to thank Leland and Franklin for that commitment. It’s a commitment that conforms to their charters, as well, and also conforms to their hearts.
This means they will purchase more loans made by banks after Americans, Hispanics and other minorities, which will encourage homeownership. Freddie Mac will launch 25 initiatives to eliminate homeownership barriers. Under one of these, consumers with poor credit will be able to get a mortgage with an interest rate that automatically goes down after a period of consistent payments. (Applause.)
Fannie Mae will establish 100 partnerships with faith-based organizations that will provide home buyer education and help increase homeownership for their congregations. I love the partnership. (Applause.)
The Enterprise Foundation and the local initiative support corporation will increase efforts to build and rehabilitate more homes in inner cities at affordable prices by working with local community development corporations.
In my home state of Texas, Enterprise helped turn the once decaying ideal neighborhood of Dallas into a vibrant community, by building homes that were sold to residents at affordable prices. The National Association of Home Builders will team up with local officials, home builder associations and community groups in 20 of our nation’s largest housing markets, to focus on how to eliminate barriers, and encourage homeownership.
The Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation will dramatically expand financial and home buyer education efforts to 380,000 minority families. The Neighborhood Housing Services of America will raise $750 million to promote homeownership initiatives in many communities. We’re beginning to use the Internet better, so that realtors all across the country will be able to call up programs all designed to help minority home buyers understand what’s available, what’s possible, and what to avoid. The National Realtors Association will create a central data bank of affordable housing programs, which will be made available to agents, real estate agents, to help people.
So these are some of the beginnings of a national effort. And I want to thank all those who are responsible for the organizations I just named for lending your talents to this important effort for America. You know, one of the things Presidents can do, is they can call the old conference. So I’m going to call one — (laughter) — just to make sure people understand, not only are we serious, but to let them check in. If they’ve signed up and said they’re going to help, this will give everybody a chance to say, here’s what I’ve done to help. It’s what we call accountability. (Applause.)
And so this fall, we’re going to have a White House conference. It is a White House conference specifically designed to address the homeownership gap. It is a White House conference that will not only say, what have you done to date, have you got any new ideas that we can share with others as well. I’m serious about this. This is a very important initiative for all of America. See, it is a chance for us to empower people. We’re not going to talk about empowering government, we’re talking about empowering people, so they have got choices over their lives. (Applause.)
I want to go back to where I started. I believe out of the evil done to America will come incredible good. I believe that as sure as I’m standing here. I believe we can achieve peace. I believe that we can address hopelessness and despair where hopelessness and despair exist. And listen, I understand that in this great country, there are too many people who say, this American Dream, what does that mean; my eyes are shut to the American Dream, I don’t see the dream. And we’d better make sure, for the good of the country, that the dream is vibrant and alive.
It starts with having great education systems for every single child. (Applause.) It means that we unleash the faith-based programs to help change people’s hearts, which will help change their lives. (Applause.) It means we use the mighty muscle of the federal government in combination with state and local governments to encourage owning your own home. That’s what that means. And it means — it means that each of us, each of us, have a responsibility in the great country to put something greater than ourselves — to promote something greater than ourselves.
And to me, that something greater than yourself is to love a neighbor like you’d like to be loved yourself. In order to change America and to make sure the great American Dream shines in every community, every community, we must unleash the compassion and kindness of the greatest nation on the face of the earth.
I’m honored to be here today. I want to thank you for your interest. God bless you all, and God bless America. (Applause.) “
Needs Repeating: “Its what we call accountability.”
Yes it is, Mr. President. Yes it is.
Capitalism is not dead but it is on life support.
What industry will we nationalize next?
This has to be a forgery.....Conservative President George Bush would never make a bone headed move like this. This sound like something a pandering politician would say to play to a minority audience.
” What industry will we nationalize next? “
The automakers have been clamoring for a $25billion bailout...
(That figure will go up, as hyperinflation sets in...)
Without doubt, Baby Bush and the Republicans are in this mess up to their necks, complicit with Clinton and the Democrats. As always, we have been completely sold down the river by our short-sighted, detached, power-hungry political masters.
If the electorate weren’t such idiots we would have thrown these bums out en-masse.
Thanks for your post. Very enlightening to read the actual words.
I’ve always disliked the term “community” in political speech. The word is a way of smuggling identity politics into political discourse.
For some people, it seems to be a euphemism, or a code, for “poor black people”.
The Big 3 are next and then more banks.
If someone had top me 8 years ago that a Republican president would nationalize an industry, I would have said they were insane.
Time to invest in the company that makes the printing presses for the fed.
I just want to puke. Puke not because my holdings are down but because America as we knew her is dead.
” because my holdings are down “
The markets are jubilant over this —
Big Money has been angling for a “Managed Capitalism” since the oddly misnamed Clinton Boom (see also: “Smoke and Mirrors — How to Make a Fortune When There’s No There There”)...
Well, they’ve got it — hope they enjoy it when reality overtakes euphoria....
Who next, the auto companies for sure, but the line will grow. What effect will this enormous acquisition of junk paper have on the Federal government and the taxpayers? This looks like a precursor to a huge increase in inflation and the devaluation of the USD to me.
What we have is a "one-two" punch - the Fed has blown through all their short term paper and had to print $43B to bail out AIG. In effect, all this does is whack the dollar and set up the next targets, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. Denninger's thesis is that the greedy hedge fund managers (who want to pick up assets at bargain basement prices) short the target stocks, causing the price to fall and drop their credit rating. Then the target company needs cash to cover their CDS holdings, and have no access to normal capital. He claims that this is what happened to Fannie, Freddie, and AIG. The the Fed is faced with bailout or bankruptcy. Denninger's thesis is it is better to suffer the pain of letting these institutions fail than the bigger pain of hyperinflation that comes from printing too much money. Denninger claims that no government who has tried to "print" their way out of a credit crisis has survived either financially or politically. He cites the Weimar Republic, Argentina, and Zimbabwe as examples.
The SEC is already threatening to crack down on short selling. Denninger anticipated this and says it will not be effective. Denninger posits that the hedge fund managers can achieve the same thing with "puts". My reading leads me to conclude Denninger is correct. Perhaps the SEC will clamp down on these as well.
Let’s not resurrect it.
The Constitution is twitching and gasping for breath as the last claim to being “free” is leaving.
You have it folks.Socialism to erase all of the bad debt that these brokerages and mortgage companies own.YOUR hard earned dollars are going to bail out idiots and Wall Street.
I like it.
Too bad so few people are willing to read it and understand what is happening.
I cannot imagine what would happen here in FR if a Democratic President Nationalized one of the nation’s largest corporations and taken over a Trillion Dollars of bad loans.
But for some reason, very few people even here at FR are up in arms about this crisis. This is an economic 9/11 and very well could be a financial collapse.
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