Right Wing News: ACORN & the subprime crisis

Right Wing News

ACORN & the subprime crisis

Investigative reporter Matthew Vadum reveals ACORN’s role in causing the subprime mortgage debacle:

In a circa 1999 document, “To Each Their Home: Success Stories from the ACORN Housing Corporation,” the ACORN affiliate called the American Dream a sham and bragged about undermining banks’ underwriting standards. . . .
ACORN Housing took credit for developing “several innovative strategies” to get around pesky traditional lending guidelines, which were unfair because they “were geared to middle class borrowers.”
Instead of using passe measures of creditworthiness such as, say, credit history and having an adequate income, ACORN convinced lenders to adopt “more flexible underwriting criteria that take into account the realities of lower income communities.” Henceforth, some banks serving inner cities would accept “less traditional income sources such as food stamps.”

You read that right: ACORN pushed banks to count food stamps as income in determining mortgage eligibility. Think about that when you get your next 401(k) statement. Your investments are in the toilet and the world’s financial system is teetering on the verge of meltdown because of these left-wing poverty pimps. They’re promoting “equality” only in the sense that all Americans are getting equally screwed.

Washington Independent: The Maestro Speaks — and He’s Not Blaming the CRA

Washington Independent

The Maestro Speaks — and He’s Not Blaming the CRA

Friend of the site Charles Morris points out something many people might have missed in former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan’s testimony Thursday before Congress.

Headlines noted that Greenspan acknowledged his misplaced faith in the ability of free markets to correct themselves. But he also did something else — he didn’t point to the Community Reinvestment Act as the cause of the foreclosure crisis, a belief widely embraced by many conservatives.

According to the New York Times, Greenspan told Congress that “excess demand from securitizers” fueled the subprime bubble. He didn’t contend that civil- rights activists had overrun the administrations of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush to force the government to make loans to poor borrowers.

So now it’s all on the record.  Let’s put the whole blame-the-CRA thing to rest. Greenspan’s credibility might not be what it once was, but he’s hardly a bleeding heart, either. And even he’s not blaming low-income borrowers.

Or, as Morris put it:

“The Maestro has spoken. As the sportscasters say, ‘Put it in the books.’”

Colorado Spring Gazette: OPINION: Frank, who’s white, plays the race card

Colorado Spring Gazette: OPINION

Frank, who’s white, plays the race card

The CRA was formed during the Carter era, expanded under President Clinton and even championed by President George W. Bush. Politicians saw this act – which rated and rewarded banks based on their efforts to hand out loans in poor and minority neighborhoods – as a means to expand the dream of home ownership. That’s a worthy goal, but the end result was the obliteration of the market rules that assured that loans were given only to those who could afford to pay them.

These loosened standards benefited the real estate industry for a short period. Every Ponzi scheme needs new buyers to keep the system going. And so the housing bubble got inflated to absurd levels. When the bubble burst, lenders lost huge piles of cash.

“Banks have been placed in a Catch-22 situation by the CRA: If they comply, they know they will have to suffer from more loan defaults,” explained Tom DiLorenzo, a Loyola College of Maryland economics professor writing on lewrockwell.com. “If they don’t comply, they face financial penalties, and, worse yet, their business plans for mergers, branch expansions, etc. can be blocked by CRA protesters, which can cost a large corporation like Bank of America billions of dollars. Like most businesses, they have largely buckled under and have surrendered to their bureaucratic masters.”

Making these obvious points is not racist. Mr. Frank should be ashamed of himself. The nation needs a wide-ranging debate, not efforts to shut down discussion.

Jack&Jill Politics: Blame the Niggers: A Time-Honored Response to the Financial Crisis

Jack&Jill Politics

Blame the Niggers: A Time-Honored Response to the Financial Crisis

The main reason I haven’t written about this before was that, to me, the strategy was so prima facie ridiculous, racist and self-serving, I was sure no one could possibly take it seriously. I mean, I literally chuckled and shook my head the first time I heard tell of it and did a Lil Jon “HWHUT!?”

But leave it to me to fail to see the enduring appeal of a classic conservative “Blame the Niggers” strategy. Black people are sort of used to taking the blame unjustly for all of society’s ills. A lot of the time, we just roll our eyes, shrug it off and go about our business, just trying to put food on the table for our families.

Right now, certain people – certain predatory lenders and those who supported them – are looking for someone to blame. Those who asked for de-regulation and self-governance are looking for a bailout from their mistakes and when you’re looking for government welfare, why not lay blame on the (non-existent) “welfare queens” with whom you’re now competing? Who took your money, your house, your retirement savings, your job, your Christmas? Certainly not anyone with wealth and power, in charge, with access to policymakers, making decisions that affect millions. No, America — this is so simple. Who did this to America? Why, the niggers! The niggers did it!

Keloland: Our First African American President?


Our First African American President? 

Tying Obama to Ayers may be fair or not, but only in Bizzaro world does it have anything to do with race.  Likewise, pointing out that Congressional attempts to advance minority home ownership had something to do with the subprime loan crisis is perfectly legitimate point, if you care about causes and consequences. 

The truth is that Republicans have been scrupulously respectful of Obama when it comes to race, and that matters.  No doubt there are some Americans who won’t vote for Obama because of his skin tone, just as there are a lot of African Americans who are voting for him because of that same reason.  But most of us, obviously, are making our mind up on other grounds, and that matters. 

If you think that Obama is a bad investment, I say I agree, but I also say: trust in the Constitution of the United States.  It survived a civil war.  It will survive this.  And if Obama does win, can we not say that there is no office in the land that is not open to our African American citizens?  Republicans have no inclination to use the race card.  Maybe the Democrats will be forced to abandon it as well. 

Bob Krumm: Who’s race-baiting whom?

Bob Krumm

Who’s race-baiting whom?

Any time an opponent of Barack Obama has the temerity to criticize him, as predictable as the daily solar rise in the east, you can expect to be accused of racism.  Nashvillian Sean Braisted isn’t one to disappoint. 

Let’s briefly review the record

Barack Obama abused race to benefit a corrupt organization (ACORN).  He never supported Republican calls for common sense regulations of two now-bankrupt companies (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac).  In exchange for his support hiding those companies’ insolvency, he received tens of thousands of dollars of campaign contributions.  And when the house of race cards he helped build, came crashing down upon the American taxpayer, he flat-out lied and said that it was Republicans who prevented common sense regulations that caused the mess.  He and his party created the problem, and he now thinks that he can get away with sweeping his blame under the rug of American disgust with President Bush.

When black Congressmen tell white Congressmen that their (now obviously very real) concerns about the liquidity of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are a “political lynching,” who is race-baiting?

If there 

Nashville Post Politics: Tired Of The Race Race

Nashville Post Politics

Tired Of The Race Race

Sean Braisted is apoplectic at the racial dynamic developing in regards to our current economic crisis:

When the economic fiasco started going down a few months ago, I thought that there wouldn’t really be any way for racial divisions to be exploited in a problem so clearlydeveloped in New York and Washington institutions.Damn, its been interesting to see myself proven wrong. Thankfully though, it seems fairly isolated to a group of race-baiting conservatives and their huddled masses listening on the radio and watching Fox News…we’ll see if that virus spreads elsewhere in the coming weeks. Luckily, one mainstream news organization has the cojones to challenge the rightwing hate machine, and they have pretty well evicerated the memes being promoted by the Dixiecrat descendants.

Media Matters: Conservative radio hosts claimed HUD said 5 million illegal immigrants were given subprime mortgages, despite HUD’s reported denials

Media Matters

Conservative radio hosts claimed HUD said 5 million illegal immigrants were given subprime mortgages, despite HUD’s reported denials

Rush Limbaugh and KSFO’s Lee Rodgers repeated a variation of the claim that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) gave “5 million illegal aliens” subprime loans that they have not paid back. Quinn & Rose‘s Jim Quinn also cited the 5 million statistic without citing a source for the figure. None of these radio hosts noted that HUD has reportedly stated that this statistic is false.

Daily News: Shameless John McCain plays the Willie Horton card

Daily News

Shameless John McCain plays the Willie Horton card

In 1988, the road to the White House took a detour through the gutter when George H.W. Bush, the father of our current President, unfairly tied his Democratic opponent,Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis, to the racially charged image of William Horton, a vicious rapist and murderer.

Horton, serving life without parole, got out of prison thanks to an ill-advised prison furlough policy that Dukakis supported. The convict went on to rape a woman in front of her husband while on release.

Fair game, to a point. But Republican operatives gleefully beamed Horton’s menacing mug shot and horrific deeds into millions of American homes.

They pretended the ads weren’t racist. “The only question is whether we depict Willie Horton with a knife in his hand or without it,” said Roger Ailes, then a Republican media operative and now president of Fox News.

It became the worst kind of racial scare-mongering, a low point in modern politics.

But 20 years later, Willie Horton has been summoned back to presidential politics – not as the frightening black rapist but as a legion of shadowy, easily demonized social outsiders.

Obama is being tied to – take your pick – Muslim terrorists, violent white hippies and even uppity “minority homeowners” who somehow, according to GOP spin artists, are among the top villains in wrecking the global economy.

McCain has begun harping on Obama’s tenuous connection to William Ayers, an ex-radical who served with Obama on the six-member board of a Chicago charity.

And the cynical, poisonous effort by McCain backers to lay blame for the economic crisis on “minority homeowners” running amok in the credit markets is also doomed to fail.

Not only is the real culpability clear, but many of the guilty have already confessed.

No sane person believes this mass collusion and delusion of funny money was hatched by striving black and Latino families. Yet GOP attack dogs and media allies like Fox News’ Neil Cavuto have embraced that story.

Media Matters: On Dobbs, radio host claimed HUD said “about 5 million illegal alien home mortgage loans … have gone bad,” but HUD reportedly says stat is bogus

Media Matters

On Dobbs, radio host claimed HUD said “about 5 million illegal alien home mortgage loans … have gone bad,” but HUD reportedly says stat is bogus

Summary: On Lou Dobbs Tonight, Roger Hedgecock claimed that the Department of Housing and Urban Development “was talking about 5 million illegal alien home mortgage loans that have gone bad.” But Hedgecock did not cite a source for the purported HUD statistic. In fact, an article published more than an hour before Lou Dobbs Tonight aired reported that HUD “says there is no basis to news reports that more than 5 million bad mortgages are held by illegal immigrants” and that “a HUD spokesman said his agency has no data showing the number of illegal immigrants holding foreclosed or bad mortgages.”