Sunday, September 21, 2008

Obama and The Mortgage Crisis

Most people of my age will remember the term "redlining". That referred to a financial practice where banks would not lend money to People of Color. Instead, they took a red pen and drew a line around minority neighborhoods that would be denied loans.

Of course, the banks did not explicitly use the language of racial discrimination. Instead, as usual, the fat cats removed their white hoods and used code words like "bad credit risk" or "people without jobs, credit histories, collateral, or the ability to make a down payment".

Then, in 1977, under the stewardship of President Carter, the Community Reinvestment Act was passed, and all discrimination was outlawed. Banks had to lend money to everyone.

So far, so good.

Or was it?

Actually, a problem remained: Although minorities were getting loans and mortgages, the greedy lenders were getting even richer by collecting interest. But why should bankers get rich off the backs of the working people?

They shouldn't.

And now, those very fat cats are getting theirs. Firings, bankruptcies, layoffs...the entire ruling class is now suffering -- as they richly deserve -- just as Engels predicted.

But the question remains: What is to be done?

Barack Obama has the answer:

"We need some clear and steady leadership and that's why I was ahead of the curve in calling for regulation," he said. "And that's why I'm calling on the Treasury and the Federal Reserve to use their emergency authorities to maintain the flow of credit, to support the availability of mortgages and to ensure that our financial system is well capitalized."

More credit. More mortgages. Perfect. Let the money continue to flow from the greedy capitalists to the working people.

Our mission will not be finished until the working people get everything they deserve, for free, and the rich are punished for good.

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