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Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?

 
Sinanju2
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11/25/2009 10:39 AM
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Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Solving Whose Problem?
by Thomas Sowell

No one will really understand politics until they understand that politicians are not trying to solve our problems. They are trying to solve their own problems-- of which getting elected and re-elected are number one and number two. Whatever is number three is far behind.

Many of the things the government does that may seem stupid are not stupid at all, from the standpoint of the elected officials or bureaucrats who do these things.

The current economic downturn that has cost millions of people their jobs began with successive administrations of both parties pushing banks and other lenders to make mortgage loans to people whose incomes, credit history and inability or unwillingness to make a substantial down payment on a house made them bad risks.

Was that stupid? Not at all. The money that was being put at risk was not the politicians' money, and in most cases was not even the government's money. Moreover, the jobs that are being lost by the millions are not the politicians' jobs-- and jobs in the government's bureaucracies are increasing.

No one pushed these reckless mortgage lending policies more than Congressman Barney Frank, who brushed aside warnings about risk, and said in 2003 that he wanted to "roll the dice" even more in the housing markets. But it would very rash to bet against Congressman Frank's getting re-elected in 2010.

After the cascade of economic disasters that began in the housing markets in 2006 and spread into the financial markets in Wall Street and even overseas, people in the private sector pulled back. Banks stopped making so many risky loans. Home buyers began buying homes they could afford, instead of going out on a limb with "creative"-- and risky-- financing schemes to buy homes that were beyond their means.

But politicians went directly in the opposite direction. In the name of "rescuing" the housing market, Congress passed laws enabling the Federal Housing Administration to insure more and bigger risky loans-- loans where there is less than a 4 percent down payment.

A recent news story told of three young men who chipped in a total of $33,000 to buy a home in San Francisco that cost nearly a million dollars. Why would a bank lend that kind of money to them on such a small down payment? Because the loan was insured by the Federal Housing Administration.

The bank wasn't taking any risk. If the three guys defaulted, the bank could always collect the money from the Federal Housing Administration. The only risk was to the taxpayers.

Does the Federal Housing Administration have unlimited money to bail out bad loans? Actually there have been so many defaults that the FHA's own reserves have dropped below where they are supposed to be. But not to worry. There will always be taxpayers, not to mention future generations to pay off the national debt.

Very few people are likely to connect the dots back to those members of Congress who voted for bigger mortgage guarantees and bailouts by the FHA. So the Congressmen's and the bureaucrats' jobs are safe, even if millions of other people's jobs are not.

Congressman Barney Frank is not about to cut back on risky mortgage loan guarantees by the FHA. He recently announced that he plans to introduce legislation to raise the limit on FHA loan guarantees even more.

Congressman Frank will make himself popular with people who get those loans and with banks that make these high-risk loans where they can pocket the profits and pass the risk on to the FHA.

So long as the taxpayers don't understand that all this political generosity and compassion are at their expense, Barney Frank is an odds-on favorite to get re-elected. The man is not stupid.

What is stupid is believing that politicians are trying to solve our problems, instead of theirs.

As for the FHA running low on money, that is not about to stop the gravy train, certainly not with an election coming up in 2010.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is also running low on money. But that is not going to stop them from insuring bank accounts up to a quarter of a million dollars. It would be stupid for them to stop with an election coming up in 2010.

[link to townhall.com]
I don't do book reports, I don't sort the wheat from the chaff but I will discuss the topic of your ignorance if I'm asked. -MC Frontalot

“But make no mistake, BP is operating at our direction...” -Barry Obammy
Revbo

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11/25/2009 10:49 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
TANSTAAFL
mathetes

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11/25/2009 10:52 AM

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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
 Quoting: Revbo

+1
For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2009 10:52 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
 Quoting: Revbo

Because he wouldn't promise us free shit!
Revbo

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11/25/2009 10:54 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?

Because he wouldn't promise us free shit!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 826870


'Bout right. Damn free shit. Always screwing everything up.
TANSTAAFL
Sinanju2 (OP)

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11/25/2009 10:55 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
 Quoting: Revbo


>>I believe he has a speech impediment and in this culture... that spells doom for a politician...


(Unless you are a gay socialist like Bawney Fwank)
I don't do book reports, I don't sort the wheat from the chaff but I will discuss the topic of your ignorance if I'm asked. -MC Frontalot

“But make no mistake, BP is operating at our direction...” -Barry Obammy
Revbo

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11/25/2009 10:57 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?


>>I believe he has a speech impediment and in this culture... that spells doom for a politician...


(Unless you are a gay socialist like Bawney Fwank)
 Quoting: Sinanju2


It's not so much an impediment as he just speaks very slowly. Maybe Walter Williams, then. They agree on everything, and often have conversations when Williams substitute hosts for Limbaugh.
TANSTAAFL
Sinanju2 (OP)

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11/25/2009 11:02 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Either way, in the current culture a politician needs to be perfect on camera or he or she has absolutely no chance.
I don't do book reports, I don't sort the wheat from the chaff but I will discuss the topic of your ignorance if I'm asked. -MC Frontalot

“But make no mistake, BP is operating at our direction...” -Barry Obammy
Anonymous Coward
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11/25/2009 11:18 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
any relation to anthony sowell?

[link to www.nydailynews.com]
Awen Losg

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11/25/2009 11:22 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
 Quoting: Revbo


You got that right! What a mind! I would celebrate for weeks to have that man in office. That one, we can trust.
mercury2

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11/25/2009 11:27 AM

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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
 Quoting: Revbo

+10
Revbo

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11/25/2009 11:54 AM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Either way, in the current culture a politician needs to be perfect on camera or he or she has absolutely no chance.
 Quoting: Sinanju2


I think it would be an interesting study to see the difference in the media's portrayal of a smoker running for president if it were Williams, versus the occasional under-the-breath-he's-trying-to-quit-so-it's-okay portrayal of Obama's smoking.

I also want to see Bobby Jindal run in 2012, not because I want him to be president, although I think he would be great. His parents were Indian citizens, which should make him ineligible for the presidency. I would be interested to see if the Democrats let it slide because they don't want to open that can of worms again, or challenge it, thus bringing Obama's citizenship status back into the forefront.
TANSTAAFL
The Professor
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11/25/2009 12:00 PM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?
 Quoting: Revbo


Thomas Sowell for President? I like the idea.

If not President, Secretary of Education.

Sowell's book Is Reality Optional is one of the best books I have ever read. Sowell proves that contrary to popular myth:

* Poverty does not cause crime; rather crime causes poverty. When crime comes into a neighborhood businesses leave, and so do residents who can afford to move elsewhere. This "poverty causes crime" myth is nothing more than a crude attempt to excuse and justify criminal behavior.

* High unemployment and incarceration rates among Blacks is not the result of racial discrimination, but is due instead to the personal behavior of individual Blacks and the choices they make. Blacks and Whites are equally successful in gaining employment when they are similarly qualified; however, it should come as no surprise that Black high school dropouts are less likely to find a job than White high school or college graduates. The job market does not discriminate against Blacks, and neither does the criminal justice system. There are more Blacks than Whites in prison simply because more Blacks commit crimes.

* Blacks historically fared much better BEFORE all the affirmative action and welfare programs were put in place to help them. The social programs which were supposed to help Blacks ended up almost destroying the Black family unit.

Sowell, for those who do not know him, is a Harvard honors graduate, a nationally syndicated columnist and the author of over thirty books. He is a super intellectual but his writing style is plain and simple. He is a no-nonsense heavy hitter who gets to the truth in a hurry. He is thorough and leaves his critics defenseless.

I'd be proud to have this man for my president.
Revbo

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11/25/2009 12:06 PM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?


Thomas Sowell for President? I like the idea.

If not President, Secretary of Education.

Sowell's book Is Reality Optional is one of the best books I have ever read. Sowell proves that contrary to popular myth:

* Poverty does not cause crime; rather crime causes poverty. When crime comes into a neighborhood businesses leave, and so do residents who can afford to move elsewhere. This "poverty causes crime" myth is nothing more than a crude attempt to excuse and justify criminal behavior.

* High unemployment and incarceration rates among Blacks is not the result of racial discrimination, but is due instead to the personal behavior of individual Blacks and the choices they make. Blacks and Whites are equally successful in gaining employment when they are similarly qualified; however, it should come as no surprise that Black high school dropouts are less likely to find a job than White high school or college graduates. The job market does not discriminate against Blacks, and neither does the criminal justice system. There are more Blacks than Whites in prison simply because more Blacks commit crimes.

* Blacks historically fared much better BEFORE all the affirmative action and welfare programs were put in place to help them. The social programs which were supposed to help Blacks ended up almost destroying the Black family unit.

Sowell, for those who do not know him, is a Harvard honors graduate, a nationally syndicated columnist and the author of over thirty books. He is a super intellectual but his writing style is plain and simple. He is a no-nonsense heavy hitter who gets to the truth in a hurry. He is thorough and leaves his critics defenseless.

I'd be proud to have this man for my president.
 Quoting: The Professor 660063


How about Secretary of the Treasury? If Sowell was a Keynesian, he would have won 20 Nobel Prizes in economics by now. Geithner and Bernanke are mental midgets compared to this guy.
TANSTAAFL
The Professor
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11/25/2009 01:10 PM
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Re: Thomas Sowell: Solving Whose Problem?
Why, oh why, could Tom Sowell not have been our first black president?


Thomas Sowell for President? I like the idea.

If not President, Secretary of Education.


How about Secretary of the Treasury? If Sowell was a Keynesian, he would have won 20 Nobel Prizes in economics by now. Geithner and Bernanke are mental midgets compared to this guy.
 Quoting: Revbo


Agreed!

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