In Defense Of Common Sense
Dear Senators and Representatives,
This is an open letter regarding the “Housing Bill” you are currently considering in the Senate. And I have a message from your constituents:
DON’T DO IT!
Sure, there are a lot of people who are “upside down” in their mortgages, dealing with rising monthly payments, facing foreclosure, and some are even walking away from their homes…
But there are a lot more of us who aren’t.
It may surprise you, being politicians and all, but the majority of us out here actually passed second-grade math class.
And we know that buying a house is a big deal. A very big deal.
We know for instance that borrowing multiple hundreds of thousands of dollars requires more than a passing glance at a multiple-page contract. And, crazy as it sounds, might even require a lawyer.
We know that if a mortgage payment surpasses, say, the 50% mark of your monthly take-home income, then it *might* not be such a good idea.
A heck of a lot of us out here heard the term “adjustable rate mortgage” and thought, maybe, just maybe, that it might actually “adjust” at some point down the road.
Our supernatural spidey sense also told us that people with 5 maxed-out credit cards, 2 past bankruptcies, and make 40K a year *probably* shouldn’t be buying a 500K home. In fact, they probably shouldn’t be buying a home at all.
Some of us were actually alive, and paying attention when the dreaded “Tech Bubble” burst, way, way back in 2001.
Some of us lost money.
So, naturally, some of us had a sneaking suspicion, too, that “No Money Down!” might just not be the brightest of ideas when it comes to spending hundreds of thousands of dollars. Especially hundreds of thousands of dollars that aren’t yours.
And we raised an eyebrow when “Flip This House!”, the reality show, debuted across the country in 2005.
We raised another one when “Flip That House!” appeared on a competing network in 2005.
However, we were fresh out of eyebrows by the time “Flipping Out!” debuted, on yet another network, in 2007.
You get the point.
You see, a whole bunch of us saw this whole thing coming from a mile away.
And we did something crazy.
We DIDN’T jump on yet another get-rich-quick bandwagon.
We DIDN’T over-extend ourselves and buy more house than we could afford.
We DIDN’T sign multiple-page contracts without reading them.
Most important of all, we DIDN’T take on unnecessary risk and expect the Government, via our fellow citizen’s hard-earned tax dollars, to bail us out.
We continued to rent.
We did what some would call “the right thing”. Even though that was merely being fiscally responsible. And just barely, at that.
Call it what you will, we did it.
And you know what? We vote
Look. Don’t bail out these selfish idiots. Especially the banks.
And unless someone was absolutely, and provably defrauded, you must resist the urge to come swooping in like some super hero savior. Simply let the market do what it does best: work.
America can’t afford foreclosure relief.
No matter how many sob stories make it into our glorious 24-hour news cycle. Resist the urge with every pandering, political bone in your body.
Sure, it may temporarily “depress” housing prices, including some of those who weren’t directly involved in this whole mess. But remember, when we see a 30% drop in price of a house that was twice as expensive as it should be, is still 40% too expensive.
The truth is, despite all the whining, the market is still over-priced. Everywhere.
But perhaps the real reason for your concern is that you’re seeing your property tax coffers shrink across the country? Well, much like the infamous home owners and their home equity lines of credit, buying boats and plasma TVs with phantom equity, perhaps you politicians shouldn’t’ve have budgeted on a bubble either. Eh?
So please, if you can, suck your crocodile tears back into your reptilian tear ducts, and stop this bill. Stop this insanity.
DON’T DO IT.
Because if you DO bail these people out, even a little teeny, tiny bit, you will have not only done the wrong thing. You will have made doing the right thing no longer necessary.