Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Obama's Mortgage Plan Isn't Enough


President Obama's plan to stimulate the housing market is a good one. But the $75 billion earmarked is not nearly enough money to make a dent.

That, at least, is the opinion of Dedrick Muhammad, my guest today on News Talk Online on

Muhammad, senior organizer and research associate for the Program on Inequality and the Common Good at the Institute for Policy Studies says the mortgage relief program "will help soften the impact" of the recession. But, he adds, "I don't believe it will stabilize the housing market."

Several callers expressed concern that the plan seems to address, mainly, the middle class. What, they asked, of poor homeowners?

Muhammad says, the reality is, with the exception of rural areas, most poor people are renters.

He particularly likes the portion of the plan which gives bounties to people who arrange loans between borrowers and lending institutions. "They are giving a profit motive," he says, "to restructure an affordable loan."


Anonymous said...

I've heard economists also say that the stimulus package isn't enough as well.

Sad to say but this is a little a bit like bailing out the Titanic. I don't think you're going to keep the ship from sinking.

The only question is, unlike the Titanic, we have to pray there are enough lifeboats. I fear not!

Anonymous said...

Good analogy ANON!!

I agree that the housing bailout will do little to soften the blow for the majority. Obama talked about 'core values' and the 'American dream', yet failed to come close to the core problem's solution.
The speech sounded quite something till you stopped and analysed it then it became: "A tale, told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."

Anonymous said...

At least he's doing something!

My house is worth less than the mortgage payments now. So even if I wanted to sell it I can't.

I have two children, a dog, three cats and two birds. Oh yes, and a husband.

I'm on a medical retirement and he's in the airplane manufacturing industry. You know what that means right? He's been told that in all probability his job will be eliminated in two months. He's already looking for work, but there's nothing to be found that will keep us in this house.

The president is right. If we want to sell this house because of our changing economic situation, we can't, because of the high payments vs the its value. Besides, with such a large housing stock, homes in my area sit on the market forever.

So what do we do? Just walk away from the house when the bank forecloses on us?

Oh yes, all you "compassionate conservatives" think all of this is MY fault. I am getting what I deserve. Well, your tune will change when this happens to YOU.

Anonymous said...

The last poster who talks about her situation brings home to you what this is all about - the individual. I am not convinced that Politicians care about the individual, more about their own images. I sometimes wonder whether they look on it as some sort of game - like Monopoly!

When people talk about the situation in places like Africa they say things like - give a man a fish and you'll feed him for a day, teach him to fish and you'll feed him for life. Surely a little of the same principle could be applied to bailout packages - make the credit available for companies to keep operating and for people to keep their jobs and you are moving to a real and sustainable solution.

Anonymous said...

If she bought a house and the house lost value it's a bad investment on her part. It's not up to me, as a taxpayer, to bail her out.

First Wall Street.

Then the Big 3.

Then state governments.

Now people who signed a legally binding contract and don't want to adhere to it.

And I am paying for it all!