9/30/2008

Unheaded warnings about the systemic risk posed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac

At least 18 times since 2001 Democrats blocked efforts at overhauling Fannie and Freddie even as accounting scandals and executive rip offs became public.

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7 Comments:

Blogger Jim Lagnese said...

John:
I can understand why the democrats want to push the bailout through, but why does Bush? What do you think is the best solution to this problem?

9/30/2008 1:21 AM  
Blogger John Lott said...

Thanks, Jim. Bush is just too trusting of the people that he appoints to different positions. Paulson is a Democrat and Bush must have thought that he was would buy some honesty from the Dems. Needless to say Bush not only got no honesty, but he got bad advice from Paulson.

9/30/2008 3:35 AM  
Blogger Harry Schell said...

I just wonder if this mess was planned from some point onward. So many denials of a clear problem, Schumer's IndyMac memo, Pelosi's peech yeaterday, Rahm Emmanuel's failure to try to get Dems onboard, Dems laughing about the failed vote.

And the looney $700B-there are maybe 200 million people over the age of 18 in the country...and each of them is defaulting on $3.5M in debt?

Something stinks. Might all be chance, but seems like the odds of that are narrowing.

9/30/2008 10:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If there were prior attempts to overhaul the system, as I've read here and elsewhere, why not bring back those proposals and then build on top of them? The proposed bail-out didn't seem to me to contain anything that would correct the easy credit policies that got us into this mess in the first place.
Eliminating "golden parachute" provisions, as much as most people dislike them, is only going to result in the most qualified CEO's looking elsewhere for their jobs - leaving less qualified people in charge.
That's hardly cause for hope that the newly resurrected companies would regain profitability and that the taxpayers would ever get their money back.
Paul

9/30/2008 10:43 AM  
Anonymous WhosInCharge? said...

The Republican Party controlled the House for 6 years while Bush was President and the Senate for 4 years. There is no excuse for GSE reform not happening on Bush's watch. He had the votes.

9/30/2008 11:29 AM  
Blogger Harry Schell said...

I did some pen and paper on debt per person. I screwed up in my prior post.

700B over 200M= $3500.00 per person.

If 12% of the debt is in default, then each of the 200M is carrying an average of $26K in total debt, IFF the $700B number is right. Does that make sense to anyone? I have no data to bounce the number against, so I can't say. John, can you vet that number?

Besides that, if only 12% of the subprime debt is in default (number heard again from a CA congresscritter on the news), why is all of the debt marked down to 40 pennies or less on the dollar?

I have to agree with Thomas Sowell..I think this is a huge mistake that has been averted (for now) and the path is to fund FDIC as needed to keep banks solvent, let their "workout" departments clear the mess and fix the regulatory things like CRA which promoted the whole mess.

And fire the heads of the Senate and House banking committees who were "surprised" at this fiasco, who prevented Fannie/Freddie reform and gave the accounting fraud perps there a free pass. Franklin Raines collected $90M in bonuses. He can give some of that back, same with Johnson.

Recall these worthies and put them to work as dogcatchers. They can share fleas.

9/30/2008 11:46 AM  
Blogger Jim Lagnese said...

I still don't understand why this is a god idea to take on someone else's debt. Is this just politics as usual, or is it a case of the boy that cried "wolf"? I may be wrong, but I think that letting this lie and letting the free market take its course is better in the long run. People of our generation have become averse to being uncomfortable let alone pain. Put it another way: If I was facing bankruptcy because of my malfeasance, should I expect a bank to bail me out? May I am a little facile here, but you get the point.

9/30/2008 1:32 PM  

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