Who Hijacked Our Country

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Banking Industry Appalled at Bailout for Homeowners

This story isn’t from The Onion or a Saturday Night Live skit. It’s for real. WTF???

Two national banking organizations — the American Bankers Association and the Financial Services Roundtable — are having a tantrum because some of their $700 billion bailout package might actually go to regular people so they can keep their homes.

You can almost picture the stomping foot and the thrust-out lower lip. “It’s My bailout! My money! All Mine! MIIINE!!!!!

“Pleeease, I need a handout. My Learjet needs some repair work, and there’s a problem with the sauna at one of our vacation homes. Whaddya mean some lowlife working person is whining about his mortgage payments? Get a job! Oh God, please help me.”

Citigroup Inc. has reached an agreement with several Democratic senators that might help some mortgage holders avoid foreclosure and keep their homes. (This legislation hasn’t been passed yet.) Before you start patting Citigroup on the back — this agreement was part of the “strings” attached to their $45 billion handout from Us. From YOU.

Citigroup (like most other banking VIPs) had previously been against that socialist idea of helping homeowners with their mortgage payments. But when they saw the size of their gigantic gargantuan welfare check, and were told they might have to actually do something in return…

And in other Absurd But True stories: Sarah Palin is lashing out at the media. Again. Still. This time it’s because “the media” is giving kid glove treatment to Caroline Kennedy, compared to the harsh scrutiny that Mooselini got. Let’s see, Vice President of the United States for four years, maybe eight years, and a stepping stone to the presidency; versus the last four years of a Senate seat. Yup, same thing.

And now the U.S. Navy’s newest fighting ship: the USS Willie Horton. It’s a kinder gentler aircraft carrier.

cross-posted at Bring It On!

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Anonymous JollyRoger said...

Socialism is only for the rich. For the rest of us, there's the shitter.

I had some thoughts on another great reverse-socialist swindle earlier. The number of ways that we've been fleeced is hard to contemplate.

January 11, 2009 at 12:57 AM  
Anonymous Thomas said...

Palin is also an idiot. Kennedy is not.

I guess "kid gloves" means failing to point out flaws that a person doesn't actually have.

January 11, 2009 at 7:10 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

JR: Every time I think I'm jaded to this double standard, another story like this comes along and all I can do is go "WTF???" Billions for me but nothing for those peons over there. Bunch of assholes.

Thomas: You're right, that's probably exactly what Palin meant by "kid gloves."

January 11, 2009 at 12:50 PM  
Anonymous kate said...

I see Palin's point re: Carolyn Kennedy. There is an attitude, by some, that just because a person is a Kennedy they are automatically qualified to serve in our government. I dare say there are some others who are more qualified, capable, and competent, than Carolyn.

January 11, 2009 at 3:09 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Kate: No argument there. I think it's a ridiculous idea to appoint Caroline Kennedy to Hillary's senate seat. (I probably should have mentioned that in the post.)

But still I think it was even more absurd for Sarah Palin to compare the press coverage they both got. Being vice president, a heartbeat away from the presidency, versus an interim appointment to fill somebody's senate seat -- no comparison.

January 11, 2009 at 3:38 PM  
Anonymous Carlos said...

I'd like to punch those bankerfucks right in their tantrum holes. That's downright offensive. I say anyone that gets bailout $ from We the People needs to shut the fuck up and live with conditions and a new way of doing business. Who’s money is it anyway?

And Palin? The fact that she can’t see why she was treated differently than Caroline Kennedy is a stark testimony to her stupefying ignorance and stupidity. If I were a lesser being, I’d recommend euthanasia due to the fact she is so stupid she doesn’t realize she’s stupid; and that aint’ good fer Amurca.

We need to go back to not naming ships after people. Memorialization in our country is out of control. Schools, boats, libraries and parks don’t need to be named after anyone – especially if that anyone is still fucking alive!

That is all. ;-)

January 11, 2009 at 5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Checking the list of active Nimitz Class carriers - it is mostly presidents and key congressmen like John Stennis and Carl Vincent (who ran the Navy in congress for many years) I also find it quite fascinating that after Kennedy the only presidents to get one are since Reagan and HW Bush. Skipping over Johnson (who did a SHORT stint in the Navy) and Carter no doubt the highest ranking Naval person ever to be president. Oh both of those are also Democrats HMMMMM.

But then Richard Nixon was in the Navy -where's his carrier?

I hope I'm alive to hear all the Hollering when Bill Clinton gets his Carrier and since we already have a Dorrie Miller (look him up) there should be no problem in giving Barack his own right?

I also see we had a Carrier named the Boxer ... you don't think...NAAAH! (California Joke)

As for Caroline it is obvious that she didn't get where she is on her looks unlike "legs" Palin. In some national terms she is a lightweight but I have have some of her books and she won't put her foot in her mouth like "Dan-Quayle-with-legs" over in Alaska. She will do better then many of the politicians wives picked to fill out their husbands terms.

Yeah she's a Kennedy but wake up! there are political families on both sides for generations and generations and Kennedy's are new at this game.

We really should be putting a stop to these Bushes before Jeb and Neil start rising.

As for the Banks, remember "They know better then us"


January 11, 2009 at 5:25 PM  
Blogger Larry said...

How can struggling homeowners expect the elite to help their plight when they are busy raping the poor.

January 11, 2009 at 5:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Tom, Happy New Year, it's been a while.

Maybe this was pointed out in the post and I just didn't get it but....if homeowners are getting a bailout, aren't these big money grubbing pigs still getting more money(in addition to the bailout) since the almost homeless will be paying their mortgages to these companies?

In regards to Palin's comments, the media has failed to challenge Caroline's qualifications. (Although I live in Scotland I'm still following US politics). Caroline Kennedy like Luke Russert and Tucker Carlson are cases of affirmative action. But I will also like to say that Caroline will serve NY well and will not be in bed with Wall Street. And the fact that she's an advocate of literacy and education is a great way to address this issue which is often ignored.

And Palin needs to focus on the meth problem in Alaska before talking about issues she does not fully comprehend. Why hasn't she disappeared like McCain and taken Ann 'I'll say anything to sell a book' Coultergeist with her?


January 11, 2009 at 7:39 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Carlos: Yup, a punch in the tantrum hole would serve those assholes right. They're handed billions of dollars, and then they complain because there are limits to what they can do with their handout. And they complain because some non-VIP working stiff might actually get some of this money. Too F'in' much.

Erik: At least George HW Bush is a veteran, I'll give him that. Johnson and Carter both deserve to have ships named after them. It would be fun to hear all the screams from the Right. For that matter, Nixon probably deserves one too; but I think he's become such a laughingstock over the decades, conservatives would probably rather forget about him.

I'm tired of all these dynasties -- Bush, Clinton, Kennedy. There's nothing wrong with Caroline Kennedy, but this gives more ammunition to all those rightwing accusations that Democrats and liberals are "elitists."

Larry: Nah, those struggling homeowners don’t count :)

Jo: Happy New Year. Yes, it would seem to me that banks would be making money by making these loans, but what do I know? In any case, these banks received billions of dollars from taxpayers, supposedly for the purpose of lending it. Seems like they just want to keep the money (our money) and do what they want with it.

I'd rather have somebody other than Caroline Kennedy taking that senate seat. For one thing, if she gets the appointment, it will look like she just glided in because of her name and family influence, no matter what her qualifications might be.

January 11, 2009 at 8:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tom you said:

"At least George HW Bush is a veteran"

But Ronald Reagan never served (some called him a draft dodger)

They should name a Carrier after you, you served in the Navy and you are still alive.


January 11, 2009 at 9:25 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Erik: There's a ship named after Reagan? I didn't even know that. What the F#$% did he ever do to get a Navy ship named after him??? The USS Chickenhawk I presume.

I'll decline your offer :)

January 11, 2009 at 11:12 PM  
Anonymous S.W. Anderson said...

It's not just the banks. The whole financial industry should be taken down a few pegs, through their-worst-nightmare-grade regulation and through economic policies favoring public-sector investment, reindustrialization and putting the brakes on globalization.

You want to see grown rich men cry, that would do it.

Aside from her family name, Kennedy has a record and resumé. Those should be considered fairly as against the records and resumés of others who have expressed interest in the job.

I'm sure if Kennedy is chosen, most people will say it's because of her name. And if she's not, she will probably feel she was rejected because of her family name.

Re: the carrier George H.W. Bush. I look for it to be nicknamed the Out Of the Loop.

January 11, 2009 at 11:58 PM  
Anonymous The Daily Crazy said...

It is not proving easy to give taxpayer support via the medium of huge corporate institutions. Seems sort of like getting your local government office to run a retail store. 'Govern Mart' maybe??

Banks are not handling money very well these days, how about we get them to handle something different - http://thedailycrazy.wordpress.com/

January 12, 2009 at 4:48 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

SW: Yup, the entire banking industry needs to be revamped and regulated much more closely than ever. Same for every other industry that purchases the government, takes the reins and runs themselves into the ground and then demands a bailout.

The USS Out Of The Loop, LOL. This ship wants to be known as the environmental aircraft carrier; the education aircraft carrier.

Daily Crazy: You're right, banks sure aren't handling money (our money) very well.

January 12, 2009 at 12:48 PM  
Blogger Lew Scannon said...

Just the fact that she doesn't understand the difference between a senate seat and the vice presidency is further evidence that poor put-upon and picked on Palin was immensely under qualified for the position she was running for.

January 12, 2009 at 3:53 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Lew: Good point. And I'll bet she really doesn't grasp the difference.

January 12, 2009 at 4:10 PM  
Anonymous Bee said...

Bankruptcy judges now have the ability to re-write mortgage terms - and that's a great thing. Of course, the banking industry cried "foul!"
Screw'em, I say - it's in everyone's best interest in the long run to keep as many people as possible in their homes for as long as possible, and the banks be damned. That's what they get for giving us all the finger last week and the week before saying they didn't have to tell us all how they spent (or kept under wraps) the bailout money.

Palin's crocodile tears don't phase me. Caroline is a helluva lot smarter and likeable than Palin could ever be. And Tom, you're right - interim senate seat v. VPOTUS doesn't even compare.

Sorry I haven't been commenting more and posting more on my own site lately, blame Nintendo - I got a DS for xmas, and am hooked like a big ol' fish munching on a baloney hook :)

January 12, 2009 at 4:18 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Bee: Absolutely, the more people who keep their homes, the better off we all are. And that includes banks. Homeless people probably aren't taking out too many loans or credit cards.

I can't imagine the chutzpah of these people, taking hundreds of billions of dollars in taxpayer handouts and then refusing to account for what they're doing with the money.

January 12, 2009 at 4:35 PM  
Blogger bob said...

I'm god-damned tired of homeowners being viewed as "victims". I'm sorry, but if you bought a home and now can't afford it- and I don't care if its from using crazy loans or losing a job- guess what? Not my problem. If you're about to go into foreclosure, well there's tons of rental out there for you, so come and join the rest of us who rent, who even though in some cases were priced out of the market at the peak were never viewed as victims.

Screw these clowns. People need to learn financial responsibility. I've saved money for probably over a decade now, and I could probably buy a home for cash at this point. But there will be no handout for me. Just those poor lil' homeowners who bought beyond their means. Let the prices come down to levels that actual incomes can afford.

January 14, 2009 at 7:19 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Bob: If you have this much contempt for homeowners in trouble, you must be really super-furious at millionaire bankers who keep getting billion dollar handouts from taxpayers. I'm personally in between about bailing out homeowners; I can relate to both arguments. The thing that pisses me off is the contrast between the 2 groups. Millions of desperate homeowners can sink or swim on their own and shut the fuck up; Wall Street CEOs get another huge handout every time they screw something up and go crying to the government.

January 14, 2009 at 12:14 PM  
Blogger bob said...

Trust me. I'm equally angered at the banks, lenders, Real Estate agents, flipper TV shows... the whole ball of wax that became the housing bubble. Greed makes people act stupid and make stupid decisions.

My Wife and I live in the Bay Area, SF and the avg home here got up to around 630k. That's for a boring, small, un-updated two bedroom house. They were 300k before the boom. Now... 500-550k. In other words, still too expensive for most, even those making six figure incomes to afford in a halfway responsible manner. As such, the Bay Area isn't exactly a realistic buying option for us right now unless we want to move to the exurbs or buy in the ghetto. The damage was done and it still needs to be un-done.

Bailing out homeowners will only prolong the correction. Since banks and financial institutions enabled people to buy well beyond their means, those prices went up to levels that are only supported by such loan products. Additionally, the nasty loans that have pushed through the system are only half. There's a second wave known as Option or Alt-A loans, and there's just as many of these as there were Adjustable Rate Mortgages. These will accelerate the number of foreclosures beyond what the latest round of bailout money will support. Thus we will lose another 350 Billion dollars in another lame attempt to stop what WILL happen no matter what, which as simple as it sounds is about letting prices fall to levels wages can afford. Simple!

But regardless, I blame everyone involved equally. They are all to blame, knew the risks and need to accept the consequences.

January 14, 2009 at 2:21 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Bob: Well, I'm glad to see you're at least consistent in your views. Like I said in my earlier comment, I can see both sides as far as whether to bail out homeowners; but the contrast with panhandling Wall Street CEOs is just too much.

I moved from the Bay Area to Washington 4-1/2 years ago (Sonoma County). We bought in 1994 when it was still doable; then sold our house ten years later for almost 3 times what we paid. So we benefited from the housing boom, but it still sucks. These housing prices really fucked everything up for millions of people. It definitely needs to correct itself. You're probably right that whatever is going to happen is going to happen, with or without a huge bailout.

January 14, 2009 at 3:20 PM  
Blogger bob said...

Yup. Loads of people moved out the of Bay Area and moved to places like Austin, Raleigh Durham, Seattle, and other places, meaning a lot of those cities became echo-boom cities. Not that I blame them for doing so since many sold for a small fortune and bought "cheaper" elsewhere. At least you were smart and sold almost at the peak. Sonoma County is now getting HAMMERED and homes that were 500k a few years ago are now around 300k or less.

My folks live in rural TN. All around them are new shiny developments full of Mcmansions. All built for what they call Carpetbaggers primarily from the Northeast. The price of homes in their area got nipped a bit by the influx of people, but thats started to subside now since a lot of people from these other areas can't sell their homes now, which is probably a good thing in the long run.

We're too young to have bought a home years ago. But we are rather frugal and are counting the days until we buy our first home the old-fashioned way. The bubble put off these plans for a few years and the crash thats happening now will likely make things a lot rosier for us.

January 15, 2009 at 8:22 AM  
Blogger The Intellectual Redneck said...

The Bail Out Game
There is is new web based game called the "Bail Out Game." It has you driving a truck load of money around a Monopoly like board while you make decisions about what companies to bail out. Economic events like stock market drops often occur. This would be hilarious if it didn't so closely resemble reality. You can play it here. Have fun while the money lasts

January 16, 2009 at 6:47 PM  

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