Our government thinks that the American dream is home ownership, a college education for everyone. and of course, health care taxes for everyone (under the age of 65).
We just went through a housing bubble crash. Notice the people that sold their homes got cash and the people who bought them got a house they couldn’t afford. So if you paid nothing down and moved in, the term “Underwater” kind of evokes sympathy from the reader, but in most cases it didn’t cost much to move in. In fact, to rent out here, you need first and last month’s rent which is about $3,500. So for as little as $1,500 you can still buy a home out here.
I was listening to Gov. Huckabee on FOX yesterday and he question the current government policy of lowering credit requirements for new home buyers; “Weren’t low down payments the cause of the housing bubble?” Well, kind of, but the government is in a situation where selling these foreclosures to someone new, improves their balance sheet somewhat (since they already own them). The worse that can happen is that they get the house back. The real problem is the financing.
Before the crash, the banks packaged and sold this “toxic waste” (that’s what the banks called the stuff) to investors. Now that won’t happen in today’s market for two reasons, everyone knows the stuff is bad already, and you could get some jail time for selling it. Now you see why Bernanke is buying real estate paper. Once the Fed purchases the paper, Fannie and Freddie have more money to offer for home loans. Taking advantage of the American dream of home ownership, the government transfers these foreclosures to our unsuspecting kids. The average home buyer is not interested in the cost, only the monthly payments. The higher the price, the more the homeowner pays in property taxes. “Oh Goodie” says Uncle Sam.
Here is where it gets interesting. Student loans offer a method to increase the amount of debt owed by our kids. Remember the dreams we had of future success after completing college? It’s a little like buying 100K in lottery tickets. You’ll read about the winners. I’ve known people who’ve had 30K in Visa debts and that is about where the debt goes from being manageable to unmanageable. At that point they file for bankruptcy. And of course with the student loans, bankruptcy is not an option.
During tough times, the amount owed on a student loan could double in just 12 years. This is where home ownership and a wife that wants to stick around, are all part of a meaningless dream world that will fall apart. Too many debts will kill any marriage ever made. There is a way to escape this trap that Congress overlooked. Move to another country like Australia (sshhh that’s a secret).
Then on top of that I was doing my taxes and looking at what I, the wife and son pay for health care coverage combining our payments with our employers—about 20K. And this is just basic coverage. Obama care hasn’t even really kicked in yet. Why do I get the feeling that we will be paying a lot more real soon?
Let’s get rid of Fannie and Freddie. We don’t need to save homeowners who have no skin in the game. Give our kids a shot at a home that has a reasonable price tag. Modify student loans so bankruptcy is an option. Teach the lenders not to fiddle with kids right out of high school. It’s literally a license to steal from those too inexperienced to know what they are signing. As for Obama care, this law eliminates the decision many families made about what they considered necessary, like auto or health insurance. Why worry about your right to bear arms when the government can tell you what you are going to buy with your paycheck?
Do you get the feeling that all of this government help we’re getting is making things a lot worse?
We have a government that has successfully screwed up the housing market by trashing the bond market interest rates. The student loan program works for all the wrong reasons. It reminds me of those “fog a mirror“ real estate loans. The good thing, when your two years of unemployment runs out, your student loan will put food on the table for four more years--Then apply for your passport (wink wink).
Look for the work week to be shortened to 32 hours (to get more people covered by Obamacare). And of course Congress will have to raise the minimum wage by $4 per hour so workers don’t starve to death making their mandatory health care payment. On top of that, the government will probably lay off all of the people responsible for managing these programs to teach us a lesson for wanting leaner government (it gets meaner as it gets leaner). All of this lends more credence to the saying, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.” This isn't the hike we signed up for. "We are not out of the woods yet" and Obama can't smell the smoke.