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Very similar in nature to America's reliance on war and violence as foreign policy is American reliance on greed as the basis of our economic policy. Violence and greed. They get results.
Republicans are mostly proud of our nation's reliance on these two attributes. Democrats less so. Both carry on the twin traditions.
How's greed been working out lately....
In the months ahead, millions of ..... adjustable-rate mortgages .... will reset, giving them a higher interest rate as required by the loan agreements and leaving many homeowners unable to make their payments. Soaring mortgage default rates this year already have shaken major financial institutions and the fallout from more of them, some experts say, could spread from those already battered banks into the general economy.
The already severe housing slump would be exacerbated by even more empty homes on the market, causing prices to plunge by up to 40 percent in once-hot real estate spots such as California, Nevada and Florida. Builders like Chicago's Neumann Homes, which filed for bankruptcy protection this month, could go under. The top 10 global banks, which repackage loans into exotic securities such as collateralized debt obligations, or CDOs, could suffer far greater write-offs than the $75 billion already taken this year.
Massive job losses would curtail consumer spending that makes up two-thirds of the economy. The Labor Department estimates almost 100,000 financial services jobs related to credit and lending in the U.S. have already been lost, from local bank loan officers to traders dealing in mortgage-backed securities. Thousands of Americans who work in the housing industry could find themselves on the dole. And there's no telling how that would affect car dealers, retailers and others dependent on consumer paychecks. Link
Excuse The Reverend for saying this.....but it appears that greed has once again (think Enron, Savings and Loan scandal) proved to be.....how shall I say this?......destructive. Not destructive for the hyper-greedy leaders of greed, oh no, but destructive for everyone else.
Here's "The Oracle", Alan Greenspan, in 2005....
"American consumers might benefit if lenders provided greater mortgage product alternatives to the traditional fixed-rate mortgage."
Wikipedia needs to add that quote under WTF. Leadership comments like Greenspan's here are why Harry Reid called "The Oracle" a "right wing hack".....umm...and justifiably.
Here's Robert Reich, former Treasury secretary, commenting on the result of "The Oracle's" encouragement to lenders to provide, "greater mortgage product alternatives".....
Credit standards were disregarded in a tidal wave of sub-prime lending to the poor home buyers – often without down payments, often with mortgage interest rates that would rise if and when the prime rate went upward. Then what happened? The Fed raised short-term rates seventeen consecutive times, catching poor borrowers in the very trap the Fed allowed banks to set for them. So now millions of poorer Americans face foreclosures on their homes, and sub-prime lenders are in trouble. Link
Add to that evaluation the fact that Greenspan was FOR Junior Bush's huge tax cuts, primarily to the investor (greedy) class, because we wouldn't want to pay the national debt down too quickly(!!).....stir in the national debt increases during Junior's reign....increases that surpass all other debt increases by all the other presidents COMBINED....and it's easy to see the destruction greed causes.
Greed and violence have normally, throughout history, been regarded as "sins". In today's America these two sins have been elevated to standard operating procedure. Sources for American pride. Odd, that.
These two sins are being highlighted in the presidential campaigns of the Republican hopefuls. The frontrunners Romney and Guiliani promise more violence, more war, more bloodshed, more cruelty.....and more greed.....the insulting health care savings accounts, more tax cuts for wealthy interests,.....serve as prime examples. And mind you, these GOP frontrunners are PROUD of their positions on these two sins.
Democratic frontrunners, at least in their words, would like to corral these two national sins a bit.
Clear distinctions to remember come next November.