The Palin “gaffe”: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac bailouts “expensive”

posted at 7:10 am on September 9, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

All national politicians make gaffes, from the experienced (John McCain’s fumble on Colorado water rights) to the novice (Barack Obama’s long string this year).  HuffPo thought that they’d found a gaffe by Sarah Palin and hysterically trumpeted it as a disqualification.  But as LA Times real estate expert Peter Viles explains, it only counts as a gaffe if one thinks a government bailout costs nothing:

Gov. Sarah Palin made her first potentially major gaffe during her time on the national scene while discussing the developments of the perilous housing market this past weekend.

Speaking before voters in Colorado Springs, the Republican vice presidential nominee claimed that lending giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had “gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers.” The companies, as McClatchy reported, “aren’t taxpayer funded but operate as private companies. The takeover may result in a taxpayer bailout during reorganization.”

Economists and analysts pounced on the misstatement, which came before the government had spent funds bailing the two entities out, saying it demonstrated a lack of understanding about one of the key economic issues likely to face the next administration.

“You would like to think that someone who is going to be vice president and conceivable president would know what Fannie and Freddie do,” said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. “These are huge institutions and they are absolutely central to our country’s mortgage debt. To not have a clue what they do doesn’t speak well for her, I’d say.”

First, they operate as private companies, but they’re not.  Both Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have government backing for their operations — which puts taxpayers in the position of co-signer.  They have never been a completely private enterprise.  John McCain made this point two months ago when responding to the initial crisis that threatened to bankrupt the two lending giants, and said the time has come to eliminate both and allow the private sector to do their work, instead of these two quasi-governmental agencies.

Congress gave Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson a huge blank check to bail out Fannie and Freddie, as Peter Viles notes, and now Paulson has committed to the bailout.  That will in fact cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars, as Palin said:

The Palin comment is well within the margin of error on the campaign trail. There is no “gaffe” here. Congress earlier this summer — in the housing bill that both John McCain and Barack Obama supported but didn’t bother to vote on — gave Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. a blank check* to invest in Fannie or Freddie. It OKd a big bailout. Perhaps in your book a blank check freshly signed by Congress is not “too expensive.” Perhaps you trust the government not to spend a blank check. Perhaps pigs have wings. Palin was right: The very existence of a blank check means that Fannie and Freddie are too expensive to taxpayers.

*In a comforting bedtime story that several members of Congress actually believed, Paulson said the blank check was so big and powerful (a bazooka of cash!) he would never have to use it. By the time Palin spoke, it was clear that Paulson’s attempt at “verbal intervention” had failed and that real taxpayer money will be spent to prop up Fannie and Freddie.  No one knows how much, but the Treasury has signed contracts to invest up to $100 billion in each company. Oh, and loan them money too. Oh, and buy their mortgage-backed securities. Do you really want to argue that she made a mistake by saying the two companies are “too big and too expensive to the taxpayers”?

Thanks to the government support for Fannie and Freddie, Treasury was on the hook to do something to rescue them in any case, with or without this bailout.  People had invested in their securities with the implicit understanding that they had government backing.  Congress merely made that explicit over the summer, and Paulson acted in a rational manner to keep securities markets from utter collapse.  The starting point for this was not last week’s bailout, but a failure to force Fannie and Freddie completely into the private sector and to encourage competition in that market.

I’m sure Palin will make a gaffe or two between now and Election Day, but this isn’t it — and every single dollar of those hundreds of billions of dollars we’ll spend on a Fannie and Freddie bailout will prove it.

Update: King Banaian, chair of economics at St. Cloud State University, also scoffs at the notion that this was a gaffe:

The dollars were committed many, many years ago, back in its 1960s when the government was put on the hook for this and later legislation which allowed Fan and Fred to take on investments that were never the intent of the original design. The argument being made is akin to saying your home only cost you dollars after you paid the mortgage, not when you signed for the loan.

Exactly.

Update II: HA reader Ryan notes a similarity between those who believe this to be a “gaffe” and Dick Durbin explaining how the Tomnibus bill really didn’t spend actual money:


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Let them fail.

Mr. Bingley on September 9, 2008 at 7:13 AM

Lamest gaffe ever.

lodge on September 9, 2008 at 7:16 AM

Meanwhile, as Baker noted, as of July the two lenders were being offered low market interest rates by the fed again, theoretically, at the taxpayer’s expense. But, he added, “I kind of doubt she had any sense of that.”

That end bit is what really irks me.

Oh, I doubt the little lady could have possibly understood all of the complexities involved…

WHY NOT?

This isn’t rocket science, it is simple economics, and she has proven herself to be a very bright woman. A 5 minute briefing would have covered this situation with enough breadth for her to have answered the question properly (which she did).

The patronizing is irritating. Grrr.

asta

asta on September 9, 2008 at 7:18 AM

Obama makes worse gaffes almost daily.

Right_of_Attila on September 9, 2008 at 7:22 AM

I’m sure Palin will make a gaffe or two between now and Election Day

Why is necessary to throw the left a bone always? Palin was correct, plain and simple. Call the left and their propagandists liars and let it go. Don’t give their attempts to slur her credibility.

peacenprosperity on September 9, 2008 at 7:25 AM

it is like watching a boxer laugh at a weak punch….

Sarah: is that all you got newsie? you’re in for a long night then!

sven10077 on September 9, 2008 at 7:25 AM

And this is in ALL 57 states.

BobH on September 9, 2008 at 7:26 AM

Shows that Palin knows what she’s talking about. As for the press…well, they can’t be bothered with facts. They’re too busy campaigning for Obama.

guitarplayer on September 9, 2008 at 7:29 AM


You would like to think that someone who is going to be vice president and conceivable president would know what Fannie and Freddie do,” said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. “These are huge institutions and they are absolutely central to our country’s mortgage debt. To not have a clue what they do doesn’t speak well for her, I’d say.”

To not have a “clue”? Gee, exagerate much, chump? I believe his desperation is showing. In fact I believe the whole Obama thing is desperate.

bloggless on September 9, 2008 at 7:29 AM

The gay conversion is the one that will stick

tomas on September 9, 2008 at 7:30 AM

5 days ago it was eagleton, now its, “oh please, please, Gaffe…. LMAO….

stlpatriot on September 9, 2008 at 7:31 AM

It is so much fun the watch the lefty s spin that we will need a tachometer to read them.

grapeknutz on September 9, 2008 at 7:31 AM

The point here: the bail-out is just when the bill is due. By accepting the risk, the Federal Government has been incurring the cost all along. Gov. Palin would have been right if she’d said the cost was too high two years ago. This is no “gaffe”, it shows the kind of sophisticated understanding of finance that we need in the highest office.

mr.blacksheep on September 9, 2008 at 7:32 AM

It is so much fun the watch the lefty s spin that we will need a tachometer to read them.

grapeknutz on September 9, 2008 at 7:31 AM

lol, they’re at about 12000 RPMs on that one..

stlpatriot on September 9, 2008 at 7:33 AM

Here we go,

Governor Sarah Palin;

Lending giants Fannie Mae and Freedie Mac had “gotten to
big and too expensive to the taxpayers”.
———————————————————–

I guess this amounts to rocket science for Liberals,every
body knows that FM/FM are a home mortgage company!

So,SarahCuda is absolutely right,its gotten too big,and
too expensive and its going to cost the taxpayers,

thats ding,ding,ding,Palin has achieved 3 for 3!

Me thinks the Liberal’s are becoming bitterly desperate!

canopfor on September 9, 2008 at 7:34 AM

Pop quiz:

What does the ‘F’ in Freddie & Fannie stand for?

fluffy on September 9, 2008 at 7:35 AM

The way those two companies were always portrayed in the press as an extension of the gumint, how many regular people would have responded in exactly the same fashion. I would suspect that the answer got the expected positive reaction on the campaign trail where it was intended.

Huffpo can rant and rave all they want, but who is really going to listen who isn’t at the Kos site already?

JAW on September 9, 2008 at 7:36 AM

“You would like to think that someone who is going to be vice president and conceivable president would know what Fannie and Freddie do,” said Dean Baker

Did she even mention what they do? She said they operate as private companies and that it will be costly to bail them out. I didn’t see a mention of what they do.

I still don’t see the gaffe here. If a “gaffe” has to be explained over and over again by some economist, it’s not likely to get mush traction.

forest on September 9, 2008 at 7:36 AM

At least she didn’t claim she didn’t join the military becuase there was not any action in 1979.

Hog Wild on September 9, 2008 at 7:41 AM

lol,they’re at about 12,000 RPM’s on that one….

stipatriot on Sept 9,2008 at 7:33AM.

stipatriot:At the rate in which Sarah Palin is giving the
Liberals grief,they better install a RPM Rev
Limiter,or else the Liberal Democratic Party
just might blow themselves up to kingdom come!!
Haha.

canopfor on September 9, 2008 at 7:42 AM

My understnadidng is that these two organizations have been “playing with house money” in the mortgage business. They operate as private companies, but they have the backstop of the Federal Government, so they don’t have to take the same risks as a normal company. And now they’ve really screwed up so badly that they are being bailed out and taken over outright.

Am I wrong here? I’m not acting thick just to defend Palin, I really don’t understand what the gaffe is here.

forest on September 9, 2008 at 7:43 AM

You’re powers are weak, Old Man.

itsspideyman on September 9, 2008 at 7:44 AM

They have gotten too expensive to the taxpayers … It’s quite simple, the drive by media does not want you to know that it’s the taxpayers who get the shaft from these crony capitalism “companies”. They play in the dough and all the losses get forked to the taxpayers.

Who says this is agaffee at all … But you can see where this is going.

Maybe Palin should have said I wonder what the ex-Fannie Mae execs are doing as top Obama economics advisors.

tarpon on September 9, 2008 at 7:47 AM

What does the”F”

fluffy on Sept 9,2008 at 7:35AM.

fluffy: Fleecing,Folding,Finished!!haha:)

canopfor on September 9, 2008 at 7:47 AM

Listening to MSNBC and CNN this morning I got the feeling I was at a funeral. I have never seen them so depressed. It was like their father died.

They are still hoping that she will wilt with some tough questions from the media. The nerve of these idiots. Do they really think they are that smart. Gov PAlin is a Gov of a State of the Union. she has run 3 statewide campaigns, she has had 25 -30 televised debates, she has been interviewed by mainstream Media before she even thought about running. Every interview I have seen she has NEVER stumbled with an answer.

unseen on September 9, 2008 at 7:48 AM

I liked her better as a dominatrix.

Coronagold on September 9, 2008 at 7:51 AM

My understnadidng is that these two organizations have been “playing with house money” in the mortgage business. They operate as private companies, but they have the backstop of the Federal Government, so they don’t have to take the same risks as a normal company. And now they’ve really screwed up so badly that they are being bailed out and taken over outright.

Am I wrong here? I’m not acting thick just to defend Palin, I really don’t understand what the gaffe is here.

forest on September 9, 2008 at 7:43 AM

no pretty much correct. The fact that they were quasi-government agency allowed them to borrow money on the market cheaper than banks. They used this borrowed money to buy home loans from the banks and thus made their profit on the difference between those rates. Think about it. If you could make 1% on 50% of All the home loans in the country how much would that be? Then they took those loans packaged them into CDO’s and Siv’s then sold those packages to the world. China was one of the biggest buyers. Thus China directly holds a large chunk of all the US home loans. Just one way we finance our debt.

On a side note. Fannie Mae and Freedie Mac were two of the biggest lobbyist on capital hill. Their top Senators that they paid money to their campaigns? #1 Chris Dodd, #2 John Kerry, #3 Obama #4 Clinton.

Knowing this you have to ask yourself that since Dodd is the chairman of the comittee that oversaw these agencies if there was imporper influence peddling going on.

I think McCain and Palin could if they wanted to hang this around Obama and the dems neck. That is if McCain wasn’t also invovled. Since he isn’t attacking on this I would imagine he got some money at some point from them. Good old boys club indeed

unseen on September 9, 2008 at 7:55 AM

Palin is right but not because FM & FM are expensive to taxpayers now or will be.

If Fannie and Freddie had been private before, as you note, Ed, then they would have been meeting their fiduciary duty to shareholders and not vacuuming up those cr$p mortgages from banks like Countrywide, so those banks could go back out and create more of them.

Being the biggest and backed by the government, they fostered a trend, put an imprimatur on it, that has already cost the people hundreds of billions in assets because of the collapse of the subprime market they played in as secondaries, and helped to kill off a growing economy.

Fannie and Freddie are already too expensive and when Sarah says that, she isn’t thinking just as a taxpayer, but as a private citizen.

Dusty on September 9, 2008 at 7:57 AM

At least she didn’t claim she didn’t join the military becuase there was not any action in 1979.

Hog Wild on September 9, 2008 at 7:41 AM

Um, yeah… because the Iranian embassy was soooo boring right around then.

asta

asta on September 9, 2008 at 7:57 AM

“You would like to think that someone who is going to be vice president and conceivable president would know what Fannie and Freddie do,” said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. “These are huge institutions and they are absolutely central to our country’s mortgage debt. To not have a clue what they do doesn’t speak well for her, I’d say.”

So, who is this guy and what’s his motivation for using this argument (that he clearly should know is weak sauce) to tear a strip off of Palin?

Syd B. on September 9, 2008 at 7:59 AM

they are playing the gay card on the aol homepage right now

tomas on September 9, 2008 at 7:59 AM

The biggest “gaffe” is probably on the part of those “smart”, institutional types who bought FNM stock for their portfolios year in and year out without realizing how fraudulent Fannie’s bookkeeping was…. or maybe they did. They’re supposed to be clever enough to know the difference.

This is actually a bigger scandal than Enron, but since Dems were involved bilking shareholders and now the public, nothing will be said. As long as it was possible to stick the taxpayer with the bill, we see that it’s easy to make excuses, pay ridiculous bonuses and say that those in charge just goofed.

Cody1991 on September 9, 2008 at 8:01 AM

they are playing the gay card on the aol homepage right now

tomas on September 9, 2008 at 7:59 AM

Yeah but the polls show only White women switching to McCain. I want to know why there were no black women switching. could all black women be voting fro the black canidate and if so wouldn’t that make them racists? There are still around 45% white women voting for Obama. black women are about 95% voting for Obama I wonder why?

unseen on September 9, 2008 at 8:02 AM

Only idiots didn’t know that Mac and Mea weren’t partially tax payer funded. I guess that means HuffPo people are idiots, who would of thunk it?

Mercy4Me on September 9, 2008 at 8:03 AM

The democrats are desparate. It also shows their limited knowledge of the economy and Palin got it right.

jencab on September 9, 2008 at 8:04 AM

I hope Sarah Palin continues to be tough, even if she does make a mistake, because you know every word that comes out Of her mouth is going to be analyzed. Every mistake she makes will be front page news and repeated by the MSM endlessly, they would much rather everyone focus on her then dig too deep into the mess that is Obama.

spypeach on September 9, 2008 at 8:08 AM

They will not stop till they take her down.
We have not seen anything yet.

justtim2 on September 9, 2008 at 8:08 AM

unseen on September 9, 2008 at 8:02 AM

color trumps sex..

‘The Bro before the Ho’..

but if you ask me what I think sex should trump–

DaveC on September 9, 2008 at 8:08 AM

– and that is why I can never go into politics..

DaveC on September 9, 2008 at 8:09 AM

We taxpayers ae going to be out $200 billion in bailing these jokers out. I guess to The Obamassiah that isn’t too big or too expensive. Especially when he wants to spend multiples of that on new social programs.

rbj on September 9, 2008 at 8:12 AM

They can argue what they want, but it’s all the same to my wallet. It has to put up the money to bail these “companies” out, so as far as it’s concerned Palin is right.

JeffC_95 on September 9, 2008 at 8:14 AM

I would expect more from some wonk from the Center for Economic and Policy Research. I guess they are still in the research stage.

The fact that he plays dumb about the public/private hybrid model of Fannie and Freddie says a lot.

reaganaut on September 9, 2008 at 8:15 AM

Glenn Beck reported that the bailout will cost us ( the taxpayers) $2.5 trillion–about $14,000 per household.

This is OK with the Socialists. It giveses them precedent for taking total control of business.

Let them fail.

Mr. Bingley on September 9, 2008 at 7:13 AM

I agree!

davidk on September 9, 2008 at 8:16 AM

She probably realized all of this before she said a word and then proceeded to frame her statement in a way that her opponents could use to shoot themselves in the foot.

Palin, you magnificent fox!

ManlyRash on September 9, 2008 at 8:18 AM

I still don’t see the gaffe here. If a “gaffe” has to be explained over and over again by some economist, it’s not likely to get mush traction.

forest on September 9, 2008 at 7:36 AM

I see what you did there…a sled dog reference, right? Clever!

fossten on September 9, 2008 at 8:19 AM

Have you noticed how the Dem work “gaffes” into the ad (i.e. 5 million/middle class) but Sen. McCain’s camp doesn’t. I try to be petty and wish they would but it is maddening.

Cindy Munford on September 9, 2008 at 8:23 AM

It is so much fun the watch the lefty s spin that we will need a tachometer to read them.

grapeknutz on September 9, 2008 at 7:31 AM

lol, they’re at about 12000 RPMs on that one..

stlpatriot on September 9, 2008 at 7:33 AM

RPMs red-lined (spin), fuel low (money), oil pressure dropping (no Teleprompter on O’Reily), hydraulic pressure pegged at zero (media), cabin pressure dropping (polls), and a heat-seeking missle locked on (McCain/Palin).

Time to punch out? Eject VP selection first (Biden)? What to do? What to do? Decision time…

Oh s**t, who threw the damn parachutes (flags) in the dumpster!!!

Yoop on September 9, 2008 at 8:31 AM

Let’s all watch HuffPo closely over the auto industry’s requests for loan guarantees, too — see if they call those “expensive to taxpayers.”

Everyone to be taken seriously on this issue knows that the very nature of FNMA and FHLMC guaranteed the government would step in if necessary. That creates taxpayer exposure. The risk of such exposure creates real costs. There is federal oversight through OFHEO (now FHFA) and some elements of HUD (PD&R), plus all the relevant Congressional committees.

OFHEO was financed through fees on the GSEs, but the budget was set with other federal agencies — tying it to a public expression of federal priorities — $66 million worth. We wouldn’t direct that money to be spent, and authorize the relevant bodies with oversight responsibilities, if it didn’t matter to someone.

DrSteve on September 9, 2008 at 8:32 AM

davidk on September 9, 2008 at 8:16 AM

Hallelujah! Someone else who watches Glenn Beck. This bailout will cost in the trillions, from $2.5 up to almost $5, he said.

Or, at least $14,000 per taxpayer (that’s if it’s only $2.5 trillion).

Thanks, a$$holes. I sold my house to pay off debts. Maybe I should just send you a big fat bill, jerks.

Miss_Anthrope on September 9, 2008 at 8:42 AM

She should have worded it differently…it shows that she is lacking in political skills.
This is what she should have said:
“Congress is screwing you again, wake up and dump the bas*ards. The mavericks won’t let this happen on our watch once we clean house of these money sucking parasites”.
That would have shown she has a better command of the problem.

right2bright on September 9, 2008 at 8:43 AM

I still say the McCain camp should put out a press release saying Sarah is going to match Obama and campaign in 57 states in the next 57 days.

John Doe on September 9, 2008 at 8:54 AM

Another

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26616212/

tomas on September 9, 2008 at 9:02 AM

The reason they throw all these out is that if a few turn out to be true. They are amplified that much more in this environment. I think it will make the election closer.

tomas on September 9, 2008 at 9:08 AM

Palin is smarter than all Democrats!

ballz2wallz on September 9, 2008 at 9:10 AM

Listen, “regular” liberals don’t get microeconomics so you can be sure that the immature and unsophisticated Obama fans DON’T HAVE A CLUE. It is actually painful to listen to their “arguments” concerning taxes in general.

Moxie on September 9, 2008 at 9:21 AM

right2bright on September 9, 2008 at 8:43 AM

EXACTLY!!

Moxie on September 9, 2008 at 9:25 AM

DrSteve on September 9, 2008 at 8:32 AM

Very impressive use of acronyms there, Doc…

Please serve up a glossary with your next gem; so my Google button doesn’t wear out…?

Thanks.

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 9:31 AM

“…Let’s all watch HuffPo closely over the auto industry’s requests for loan guarantees, too — see if they call those “expensive to taxpayers.” DrSteve on September 9, 2008 at 8:32 AM

Why should we taxpayer’s bail out GM and Ford?

If their multi-millionaire executives can’t build the type of cars we want to buy; the board of directors should fire their fat arse‘s and throw them out without any golden parachutes.

I’m fine with a Toyota, Subaru or Nissan. They’re all built in this country.

Why not buy a vehicle that gets great gas mileage and doesn’t cost an arm or leg to maintain. That makes good sense to me.

Our AWD, Subaru, Outback gets 30 miles to the gallon on the road if we drive 55 and has only requires scheduled maintenance; to now have run over 120,000 miles, outstanding!

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 10:02 AM

HuffingPost made the gaffe not Palin. They really ought to at least pretend they know how things work before they write things.

petunia on September 9, 2008 at 10:05 AM

Potentially the most overblown accusation of a gaffe this election season.

Seixon on September 9, 2008 at 10:15 AM

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 10:02 AM

Finally, we agree on something! I have an ’07 Civic hybrid that cost me less than the LX trim level would have, and I get between 50 and 53 in it. I wish it had been built in Indiana at the new plant but they only build the hybrids in Japan. I could have paid more for a “hybrid” Malibu (a lovely car, I have to say) to get 34mpg. That’s completely ridiculous. The U.S. automakers aren’t even trying. We’ve led the world in diesel-electric locomotion for 60 years and we can’t sell a Chevy Volt for under $40,000? That’s a head-slapper.

Sorry about the acronyms. HUD policy people are my clients, this is the work I do. Sort of the air I breathe, y’know?

DrSteve on September 9, 2008 at 10:21 AM

Apparently Palin recognizes that co-signing on a loan is an expensive liability, while Democrats think it isn’t a real expense because we didn’t have to pay anything- until Freddie and Mae went under that is.

That should be Palin’s response if confronted on this- Americans understand what a cosign is and they know exactly how it can bite you in the butt.

Sackett on September 9, 2008 at 10:22 AM

Lou Dobbs put up a list of Senators that had taken lobbyist money from Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. Obama was #4, at about $105,000. Of course, Dodd was #1. Maybe that’s why Obama thinks he knows more about it.

nyrofan on September 9, 2008 at 10:35 AM

DrSteve on September 9, 2008 at 10:21 AM

Hey Doc, check this..

The 65 mpg Ford the U.S. Can’t Have.

Ford Introduces 63.6 MPG ECOnetic Diesel Fiesta… Only in Europe.

Those bloomin’ geniuses at Ford won’t introduce it here until we gar-on-tee their golden parachutes…!

I’ve got two words for them…!!

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 10:49 AM

“…my muslim faith” anyone?

jukin on September 9, 2008 at 12:03 PM

Do you suppose that the experts they consulted, so critical of Palin, might just be really really liberal?

Judge for yourself: CEPR biographies.

PattyJ on September 9, 2008 at 12:11 PM

Why should we taxpayer’s bail out GM and Ford?

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 10:02 AM

I’d rather bail out Ford than Social Security and Medicare.

Chuck Schick on September 9, 2008 at 12:19 PM

Top 5 recipients of Fannie/Freddie campaign contributions:

1. Dodd, Christopher J D-CT $133,900
2. Kerry, John D-MA $111,000
3. Obama, Barack D-IL $105,849
4. Clinton, Hillary D-NY $75,550
5. Kanjorski, Paul E D-PA $65,500

http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2008/07/top-senate-recipients-of-fanni.html

Chuck Schick on September 9, 2008 at 12:37 PM

I’d rather bail out Ford than Social Security and Medicare.
Chuck Schick on September 9, 2008 at 12:19 PM

Yeah Chuck, you and the Round Mound of Mirth and Malice from Palm Beach…

Except; I expect he’d prefer to bail out GM, they pay for advertising on his daily gum bumper.

Perhaps you, he and me will have the privilege of bailing both of their sorry arse‘s out…?

Some fun, Hey!

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 12:42 PM

Geeze, there are people who have been studying what has been going on at Freddy and Fannie for months on end and I am not sure they even have it all together.

mindhacker on September 9, 2008 at 1:02 PM

Chuck Schick on September 9, 2008 at 12:37 PM

Senator McCain has been straight up with the voters; and all this, while being a veritable money magnet for the RNC.

He’s never taken a dirty dime from anyone.

This weekend, McCain brandished the Sharpie of Doom, with which he will veto earmarks…

Scroll down a bit, to see the Saint and the Sharpie of Doom…!

If that’s actually a fact; it’ll be the first time for the Saint.

Sooner or later even a 72 year olde may lose his virginity…?

J_Gocht on September 9, 2008 at 1:14 PM

Bush has been trying to get Congress to increase regulation for these lenders for years. But they just kept putting it off and now they can not just let them collapse. The collateral damage would bury the economy and probably make Obama the next president.

But Palin does have a point, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have become a burden and should be fazed out over time.

Terrye on September 9, 2008 at 2:18 PM

Ed, looks like you forgot to include the link to the LA Times article, so here it is.

Paul_in_NJ on September 9, 2008 at 3:00 PM

I wrote about this yesterday. Given that they are GSE’s and implicitly guaranteed by the taxpayer, you don’t even have to bail them out to say they’re too expensive. Here’s how I put it:

Stein’s the one who doesn’t get it. His argument is kind of like saying the person who co-signs a home loan shouldn’t be worried about how expensive the house is as long as they’re not making the payments. If the debt is too large for the co-signer to pay-off, then of course it’s too expensive for them.

Heywood U. Reedmore on September 9, 2008 at 3:59 PM

Isn’t it interesting that most of Bush’s mess ups come from relying on the Democrats he choose to be in his Administration as a “Compassionate Conservative”. They rope-a-dope us all the time. It’s a scary thought that we still end up with a viable message and viable candidates. That’s the power of the conservative agenda. Why, oh why, do our candidates feel the need to run from it rather than embrace it. It’s why Sarah is so popular even among Independents. Take notice folks.

Sultry Beauty on September 9, 2008 at 4:22 PM