Democratic Bait and Switch

May/09/2010 15:53PM
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Magicians perfected it. Get the mark to watch a diversion and they don’t see the trick. Marketers use it. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Get the mark to come in for a sale item and sell them a luxury item. Years ago Sears tried to upgrade the brand. Jewelery, furs, etc. When Bubba brought Stella in to buy his new wrenches, Stella was supposed to talk Bubba into bling. It didn’t work, Bubba just stopped bringing Stella to Sears. Real bait and switch is illegal, but seldom prosecuted. If it were, there would be even more politicians in the penal system. Nobody does it better.

These maestros are giving the country a classical bait and switch symphony right now. Here’s the real problem congress needs to be addressing. Freddie and Fannie are still out of control, as is the FHA. The FDIC fees are putting regional banks out of business. The people who control these institutions are the real culprits in the housing/credit crisis, but they have chosen to keep the same system in place that has already failed. So, to keep from addressing these problems and admitting guilt in an election year where most of them are going to lose, they bait and switch you.

Pass a bill regulating Wall Street. Lay charges on Goldman Sachs and run a hearings circus. Demonize others to keep the real demon under the bed.

Freddie and Fannie, at the end of 2009, have debt of $8.1 trillion, either loans outstanding or loans insured. The FHA is adding a few trillion to that number. Quickly, since the FHA raised the limit on their mortgages. So far, the government has dumped $126 billion into Freddie and Fannie. Between 2001-2006 Fred and Fannie spent $123 million to lobby congress. Only the National Chamber of Commerce spent more. Franklin Raines, Fannie’s former CEO received $91 million in in compensation from 1998 through 2003.

These were the tools government used to try to make owning a home an entitlement. A failed experiment that has yet to be flushed out of the system. Freddie and Fannie will require several billion more this year to stay afloat. Without their guarantees, there would not have been synthetic CDO’s for Goldman Sachs to peddle. Estimates have been made projecting the final bailout for Freddie and Fannie to be a trillion. The FHA, which has stayed out of this for the most part, is like the iceberg that sunk the Titanic. They have a huge portfolio of bad mortgages and may be adding more as I write.

As the bait and switchers have your attention on the center ring of the circus of Goldman hearings, the real problems rock along ready to grow and create more problems down the road. You see, they can’t be fixed. To do so would require truth in lending. The real culprits in congress who let these instututions do this would have to testify. They would have to admit they made mistakes. One, Chris Dodd, has already decided he is unelectable. Others, like Barney Frank, Dick Durbin, and Charles Schumer might find themselves unelectable. It is far better to let the problem go on and postpone the damage than to become unelectable. That is why this won’t be fixed until the guilty are no longer there and new people with no finger prints on the crime can fix the problem.

Want to be a patriot? Too old to serve your country in combat? Tired of writing letters to elected officials and getting form letter responses? Don’t want to send more money to the RNC so Steele’s guys can spend it in strip clubs?

Here’s a thought. Unelect those who really created the mortgage/credit crisis mess so it can be fixed. Maybe, just maybe, the November elections will change the composition of the committees that have this responsiblity so there is honest disclosure of the bait and switch game we have been seeing, or not seeing, depending on your perspective.

Don’t you know by now that magician really didn’t saw that pretty lady in half?

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