“First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Why can't the good guys get some help?

"Already there are rumors of an August surprise (to use the phrase of business columnist Jimmy Pethokoukis) where Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac forgive underwater mortgages held by millions of Americans." - Larry Kudlow, Town Hall (http://townhall.com/columnists/LarryKudlow/2010/08/07/a_democratic_panic_attack/page/full)

I get really irritated when I read or hear about another bailout of any sort, but bailing out mortgages kinda makes me a bit hotter.

I have two family members who are struggling mightily to pay their mortgages each month. One got flooded out, had problems galore with the government flood insurance and needed some mortgage relief. She tried every way she could to get some help from any one of the programs Obama and his crew tout. The bottom line on any assistance was that she had to have missed a few mortgage payments to get ANY relief. It didn't matter what she could prove as to being upside-down, single mom, job salary cuts due to economy, house flooded, etc. etc. No help unless she was willing to skip some payments.

My other family member is semi-out of work. He does some seasonal stuff, which is so up and down it's hard to put a monthly income number on a form. He takes every side job, every handy-man job, anything that comes his way to make sure he pays the mortgage on his home. He has a special needs child which keeps his wife from working regularly, but she works out of the home as she can to help out.

He's checked into program after program, stepped up to talk to representatives when new options were put forth over the past few years. He has to miss some payments to qualify for anything, be completely out of work and / or have a steady income they can track.

I know that many, many of the people who benefit from the government's redistribution of our tax dollars (and loans from China) are in true desperate need. They lost their jobs and aren't able to work at any type job that will cover their mortgage. There are umpteen legitimate reasons that result in many being in the default boat. I don't have a problem with helping people who are truly in need. However, for every one who has an honest reason for being behind I'd bet there are at least two who are sitting back and waiting for Uncle Sam (oh, our poor beleaguered Uncle Sam) to fix things for them.

There are scammers who know how to work the system. There are those who go from one hand out to another. There are those who think we owe them.

Yesterday I was in conversation with a recent college administrative worker. He was talking about the number of government college loans handed out in his previous school that went to students who never showed. They got the max loan available, took the money and had a great time with no intention of ever paying it off. He was at a fairly small school and saw it happening over and over. He knew because he paid attention, asked questions and was shocked at the answer. It seems it's common practice. Scary.

How many of these people that are have their mortgages forgiven will be in the same situation again in a few years? How many are just sitting back and waiting for Obama to bail 'em out? Why is it that legitimate, hard working, people who don't want to scam or ruin their credit can't get any help? Why can't the government be fair? Why can't they come up with programs to help those who are trying to do the right thing?

Aww, we all know the answers to those questions. It's all politics, it's all about votes and it's all about power.

Ya know, if most of the programs put in by often-times good-intentioned people actually worked like they intended there wouldn't be a problem. We'd help those who needed a leg up become self-sufficient. We'd have programs that helped them get jobs, get over a temporary hump and get back into being a productive citizen. These hand-out programs went way, way wrong when they became political tools and/or when government drones started looking more at job security than the purpose of their position.

I was intending to have a politics-free Saturday, but I goofed and skimmed my emails. So much news, none of it seems to be good these days. I haven't even had my first cup of caffeine and I'm already steamed.... arrrgggghhhh.

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