Monday, September 29, 2008
Bailout, no Bailout
I may be the only person I know who thinks a bailout would be a good idea. I have no problem heading toward socialism, in fact it sounds like a step in the right direction. I would like the bailout to come, however, with prison sentences for the people responsible for making the decisions to give loans to people who clearly would never pay them back.
About 10 years I thought I would try to buy an apartment. Our household income was about $60,000. The bank pre-approved me for an $800,000 loan. I think I still have the paperwork somewhere. Pretty extravagant. If I was a risk taker, I would have bought an $820,000 house because I had $20,000 for a down payment. I would like to find the person who signed my pre-approval and send him to jail. I think it was Marine Midland Bank. Where did that bank ever go?
Emily Bazelon recently said she didn't understand why a bailout couldn't be accomplished by helping individual people pay off their mortgages so they could stay in their houses and keep the cash moving through the system. The payoff amounts could be adjusted downward so that the banks wouldn't profit ridiculously, the house owners would have to still pay cash money out of their pocket, and over time the cash coming through the system would help repair some damage. It sounds logical to me too.
I would like for every profiteer to suffer for their misdeeds. After they get out of prison I want them to live under a bridge, wear shoes from Payless, shop for clothes at Conway and eat at Tad's for a fancy steak dinner. And when they find new jobs, they can serve me a cafe con leche at the corner bodega.