Home
In this issue
April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 27, 2009 / 4 Sivan 5769

The Housing Boom and Bust

By Walter Williams


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Hot off the press is my colleague Dr. Thomas Sowell's 43rd book, "The Housing Boom and Bust". The book is an eye-opener for anyone interested in the truth about the collapse of the housing market that played a major role in our financial market crisis.


The root of the problem lies in Washington. The Community Reinvestment Act of 1977, later given teeth during the Bush and Clinton administrations, forced financial institutions to make risky mortgage loans they otherwise would not have made. President Clinton's Attorney General Janet Reno threatened legal action against lenders whose racial statistics raised her suspicions. Bank loan qualification standards, in general, came under criticism as being too stringent regarding down payments, credit histories, and income. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, two government-sponsored enterprises, by lowering their standards for the kinds of mortgage paper they would purchase from banks and other mortgage lenders, gave financial institutions further incentive to make risky loans. In 2002, the George W. Bush administration urged Congress to enact the American Dream Down Payment Assistance Act, which subsidized down payments of homebuyers whose income was below a certain level. Bush also urged Congress to pass legislation requiring the Federal Housing Administration to make zero-down-payment loans at low-interest rates to low income Americans.


Between 2005 and 2007, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac acquired an estimated trillion-dollar's worth of subprime loans and guaranteed more than $2 trillion worth of mortgages. That, Sowell points out, is larger than the gross domestic product of all but four nations.



BUY DR. SOWELL'S BRAND NEW BOOK …


at a discount
by clicking HERE.



There were numerous warnings that went unheeded. In congressional hearings, U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow said, regarding the risks assumed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, "The concern is, if something unravels, it could cause systemic risk to the whole financial system." Peter J. Wallison, American Enterprise Institute scholar, warned that if Congress did not reign in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, "there will be a massive default with huge losses to the taxpayers and systemic effects on the economy."


There were many other warnings of pending collapse but Congress and the White House in their push for politically popular "affordable housing" ignored them. Congressman Barney Frank, who is now chairman of the House Committee on Financial Services, said critics "exaggerate a threat of safety" and "conjure up the possibility of serious financial losses to the Treasury, which I do not see." Chairman Chris Dodd, of the Senate Banking Committee, called Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac "one of the great success stories of all time" and urged "caution" in restricting their activities, out of fear of "doing great damage to what has been one of the great engines of economic success in the last 30 or 40 years."


Sowell provides numerous examples of government actions at both the federal and state levels that created the housing boom and bust and its devastating impact on domestic and foreign financial markets, but here's what I don't get: What can be said about the intelligence of the news media and the American people who buy into to congressionally created lies that our problems were caused by Wall Street greed and Bush administration deregulation? In the words of Barney Frank, "We are in a worldwide crisis now because of excessive deregulation" and "mortgages made and sold in the unregulated sector led to the crisis." The fact of the matter is our financial sector is the most heavily regulated sector in our economy. In the banking and finance industries, regulatory spending between 1980 and 2007 almost tripled, rising from $725 million to $2.07 billion. I challenge anyone to come up with one thing banks can do that's not covered by a regulation.


For the Washington politicians to get away with spinning the financial crisis the way they have suggests that American people are either stupid or ignorant. I hope it's ignorance because "The Housing Boom and Bust" is the cure.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Walter Williams Archives


© 2006, Creators Syndicate.

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles