Is Racism the ast Refuge of a Scoundrel?

Read about it here:http://bostonherald.com/business/general/view/2008_10_06_Barney_Frank:_Conservatives_trying_to_blame_economic_woes_on_blacks/srvc=home&position=also
So, is Barney Frank claiming that racism s behind the blame game that is going on?
Or, is he admitting hisculpability in the mortgage mess?:mad:

Sounds to me like he’s claiming that Republicans are trying to deflect blame toward the Community Reinvestment Act.

He’s also noting that minorities were helped out by that act, and that seems like a shitty thing to blame.

A little heavy-handed, but not a completely untenable argument.

I’ve seen this in various forms from conservatives over the past couple of weeks. It keeps falling flat because its smoke and mirrors. Hand waving. Bulllshit. Pick your favorite.

Here is an article about roots of the current crisis that was written as it was happening: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C0DE7DB153EF933A0575AC0A96F958260&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=print
It certainly appears that there was a racial angle in relaxing the rules about Fannie Mae underwriting risky mortgages.
Though when it comes to the Democrat party rascism is the first refuge of a scoundrel.

Just because A started because of B, and B caused C does not mean that A caused C.

The program was expanded beyong its original intent eventually reaching not the working class people with good jobs purchasing primary homes but rather middle class people buying first or second homes in the 300+K range they could not afford.

So those who say that lower-income people are the cause of this subprime mortgage mess and by extension the global economic crisis are lying.

You are mistaken, if A hadn’t happened there would be no B, if B hadn’t happened there be would no C. Therefore if no A, no C. Those who say the subprime mortgage mess has nothing to do with lower income people getting mortgages they could not afford are lying. People who say that the mortgage mess has nothing to do with subprime loans and those who say it is are rascist are lying scoundrels. The lowering of lending standards at the GSE’s may not have been sufficient to cause the current crisis, but it was neccessary.

If I drove down the street and got blindsided by a car I’d blame the other driver not me if I was exercising due diligence like most of the lower income borrowers, even though me driving down the street was necessary for that to happen.

So Fannie Mae forced banks to make awful loans? And the banks invented clever predatory loan packages at the behest of Fannie Mae? And the ratings agencies gave AAA ratings to bundles of these shitty loans because someone would call them racist if they didn’t? And companies massively over-leveraged themselves here because again, the do-gooder Democrats were holding a gun to their head and would sue them for discrimination if they didn’t?

I’d say that accusations of racism have become the last refuge of the scoundrel…

There’s more to it than that, though. It’s not just that banks were offering high risk sub-prime loans, it was that they were re-packaging them as low-risk securities and selling these debts for huge profit. This was because of the deregulation that the Republicans kept pushing. Because they could make a big profit on making these sub-prime ARM loans (because they could sell the debts as something they were not because nobody was being allowed to check) it became a very profitable business to make these loans to ANYONE, not just people with decent jobs buying primary homes.

If there was more accountability, these lending institutions wouldn’t have been making so many loans - they’d say “Woah, we can’t make too many of these high-risk loans because we’ll be stuck with too much debt” instead of “Move as many sub-prime ARM loans as possible, we can just repackage it as safe home-secured debt and sell it to people who don’t know better”. They looked the other way when people lied about the homes they were mortgaging being their primary residence, leading to lending institutions owning a lot of homes nobody wanted. They pushed loans to people who didn’t even have jobs (I worked for Texas Lending for a few weeks as a temp, and there was a lot of encouraging people to be creative about their income and resources on applications).

HUD encouraged banks to accept what amounts to bad loans which increased housing purchases which increased the price of houses which accelerated the housing bubble. Those mortgages were bundled and resold. All of this was done under the guise that the US government would back these loans. And that is what happened. The loans never should have been made in the first place. HUD was paid to make it happen and now we will have to pay 750 billion to make it un-happen.

This fiasco was brought to the attention of Congress in 2005 and ignored. And yes, do-gooder ACORN members pushed for deregulation of underwriting standards and they intervened with bank reviews. You can assign politics as you see fit but this was ultimately done to us by our own elected officials and activist groups.

ACORN.

Geez…haven’t we been through this before here? Your republican talking points simply are not born out by reality.

CRA came into being in 1977. What changed recently (past decade give-or-take) was a loosening of regulations. MOST subprime loans were not written by those covered by the CRA…companies like Countrywide were in no way, in no fashion, compelled in any way by the CRA or ACORN or anyone. They did their own thing willfully. Why? Because they made scads of cash for awhile doing it.

Then explain how it is this that Republicans, who controlled the Executive and Legislative branches of government from 2000-2006 (and both houses since 1994) and were presumably hooting and hollering at the stupidity of it all let it continue. Explain their deregulation that opened the doors wider. Explain why the Fed and the Treasury were not going, “Whoa! Stop!” Explain how the rating agencies rated the bundled transactions as good risks. Explain why Wall Street, presumably savvy investors and moved by smart decision making, gobbled these things ravenously. Explain why the rest of the world was investing in these things…are Chinese investors beholden to ACORN and the CRA somehow?