Michael Hawkins is a resident of Maine who loves biology. He likes to spend his free time hiking and defending science, though not usually at the same time. Contrary to popular (but not scientific) belief, the positive and appropriate perception of science is undermined by religion, alternative medicine, the U.S. education system, and most science journalists.
Up in the air but the Republicana trying to kill: critical thinking, reason.
I think the war in Iraq is coming to a close because we refuse to allow our soldiers to be tried in Iraqi courts, not because of the Obamainator.
Obama didn’t have very much to do with killing Qdaffy. Merkel or that french fellows maybe, but not the O man.
As to the last bit, the democrats did such a good job killing all those things in the 4 years they controlled congress that there was hardly anything left to do.
Tell me, do you also give Obama credit for Hugo’s cancer?
The President is fulfilling his campaign promise to bring the war to a close. The only thing the lack of immunity does is prevent a relatively small contingent from training more Iraqis.
I can’t believe you’re buying into the Republican claptrap about Libya being thanks to the French and Germans. He initiated the campaign – and to a level which hastened Gadhafi’s demise without bringing in ground troops – and then subsequently got our allies to spend the money to carry out basic strikes. Christ, can Obama do nothing right in your eyes? He was right last year when he said if he called the sky blue, Republicans would say it was green.
As for the economy, the policies we’ve had in place have been Republican through-and-through – especially leading up to the dis-regulation-fueled collapse – with the exception of the underfunded stimulus.
He’s doing no such thing. They spent all of last week claiming we were not pulling out at the end of this year.
I may be the only one that watches White House press conferences, but they made quite a deal of saying we were not and did not take the lead in Libya. I don’t know what propaganda you are talking about, but I got my info from Mr, Jay Carney.
It should suffice to say that the government demanded loans to be given to certain areas, rather than to people with the ability to pay. To make matters even worse after making such demands they government decided to guarantee those loans, creating a moral hazard in the name of social justice and fairness, whatever those things are.
That’s what got the ball rolling, I struggle to see what deregulation led to inflated home prices and government guarantees of loans started under Clinton, and continued under Bush.
Can Obama do anything right in my eyes? Yes, I praised him for Bin Laden and there are other areas where his actions and policies don’t evoke a negative physical reaction in my body.
I’m not about to give credit where credit isn’t due though.
I’m not going to go back and forth so you’re welcome to the final word on this one.
I didn’t intend on saying anything else, but I don’t give credit to Obama for the new theocracy in Lybia either. I blame France and Germany, like the President and his press secretary.
The claim that “the government forced banks to make bad loans” is a transparent lie, of course. But it’s a favorite among talk-radio hosts who can’t stand the revelation that conservative laissez-faire economic policies have devastated the U.S. economy and proven disastrous for not just our society, but the whole freakin’ world.
Copyleft, maybe you could back that up with some evidence. Here’s mine, as presented by an academic and not a talk radio host:
“For starters, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are “government sponsored enterprises”. Though technically privately owned, they have particular privileges granted by the government, they are overseen by Congress, and, most importantly, they have operated with a clear promise that if they failed, they would be bailed out. Hardly a “free market.” All the players in the mortgage market knew this from early on. In the early 1990s, Congress eased Fannie and Freddie’s lending requirements (to 1/4th the capital required by regular commercial banks) so as to increase their ability to lend to poor areas. Congress also created a regulatory agency to oversee them, but this agency also had to reapply to Congress for its budget each year (no other financial regulator must do so), assuring that it would tell Congress exactly what it wanted to hear: “things are fine.” In 1995, Fannie and Freddie were given permission to enter the subprime market and regulators began to crack down on banks who were not lending enough to distressed areas. Several attempts were made to rein in Fannie and Freddie, but Congress didn’t have the votes to do so, especially with both organizations making significant campaign contributions to members of both parties. Even the New York Times as far back as 1999 saw exactly what might happen thanks to this very unfree market, warning of a need to bailout Fannie and Freddie if the housing market dropped.
“Complicating matters further was the 1994 renewal/revision of the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977. The CRA requires banks to to make a certain percentage of their loans within their local communities, especially when those communities are economically disadvantaged. In addition, Congress explicitly directed Fannie and Freddie to expand their lending to borrowers with marginal credit as a way of expanding homeownership. What all of these did together was to create an enormous profit and political incentives for banks and Fannie and Freddie to lend more to riskier low-income borrowers. However well-intentioned the attempts were to extend homeownership to more Americans, forcing banks to do so and artificially lowering the costs of doing so are a huge part of the problem we now find ourselves in.”
1994 Liberals “Those banks don’t lend to enough poor people”
2011 Liberals “Those banks leant to too many poor people”
Yes, as I said: it’s a popular lie.
The banks were never once “forced” to make bad loans. The vast majority of the subprime loans weren’t made under the auspices of federal oversight to begin with. Most were made to middle and upper-income lenders who were not covered by any federal lending-priority policies. The CRA rules applied only to loans that banks wanted to have federal BACKING for… and also specifically insisted that said minority loans MUST be otherwise qualified as safe and valid investments.
The banker/gamblers ignored this in their pursuit of high-risk, high-yield loans and then insisted the government was to blame for their own bad decisions… because SURELY there’s no such thing as irresponsible or predatory lending.
Wall Street wants to blame Washington for its own crimes. The Occupy movement is helping to challenge that lie.
Forgive me, but the Occupy location I just got back from visiting parroted mine and Michael’s remarks. I realize that with no organization whatsoever they are bound to be varied in opinion, but I don’t really see where the facts are on your side here.
Are the banks responsible? Yes.
Without certain government incentives would this have happened? Nope. (at least its extremely unlikely.)
The government and the banks are both responsible, but I’d say the government is somewhat more so.
Copyleft, these are some good links. I stand by my view that it was a combination of government and private actions, but you’ve made a great case that the community reinvestment act played a smaller role than I believed.