The first entries in my delicious stream under the keywords “subprime” and “crash” are dated 21 August 2007. I’m not bragging, believe me. I saved those bookmarks because I’m kind of dumb about this stuff. Most of the time I am thinking about my kids, horses, books or food. But the shape of the mortgage crisis was obvious thirteen months ago even to a self-absorbed idiot like me.
Which means that anyone on Wall Street or Washington who says they didn’t see this coming is lying to you. Specifically, John McCain is lying to you; he’s been through this twice already, with Enron/Worldcom and before that, the Keating 5.
This is par for the course; and indeed the $700bn bailout is just the latest (and the most egregious and appalling) step in this Republican administration’s campaign to nationalize risk and privatize profit.
Let’s be clear: the real cost of the toxic mortgages is probably between $100-200bn. The other HALF TRILLION dollars covers the bankers who made the wrong bet on those mortgages. These are the bankers that took home $120bn in BONUSES over the last five years. (All numbers are from Devilstower on Daily Kos except for the $700bn, which the Fed pulled out of its ass.)
The history of the last eight years in this country has been a deliberate process of robbing the poor to buy private jets for the hyperrich.
It is unconscionable.
My advice: don’t bail them out. Restructure the mortgages for the homeowners who are facing foreclosure; we know that many (most?) of them were lied to by predatory lenders. Oh, and vote the GOP out of office.
Children learn from their mistakes by accepting the consequences. Why shouldn’t grown men?