Can Housing and the Economy Survive?

“Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.”The American economy is hurting with:
a housing market that barely has a pulse
high unemployment
a government swallowing up massive losses from bad mortgages
billions in bailout money for ” to big to fail ” corporations
banks reluctant to help troubled underwater borrowers
no help for struggling small business owners
Is the tangled web beyond repair? When do you draw the line and say it’s time to start fresh?We’ve allowed our controllers way too much control. Our American dream, our pride, our independence and dignity have been compromised. Yet the dance continues. The song remains the same. I can think of lots more cliche’s while the politics and posturing continue at the expense of hard working poor and middle class Americans struggling to stay afloat.What would it take to right the ship?Perhaps it’s time to begin to understand that we are entrenched in a system that doesn’t work anymore. At least not for most Americans.The opportunities to address the deterioration of the housing market should have been the number one item on the agenda in heading off the financial crises. We were once a nation dependent on housing, we now are struggling to survive without it. Home ownership which was a brass ring has become a nightmare for many American families. Opportunities for those who may be in a position to buy a home are presently endless. With so many underwater borrowers it becomes a challenge to find the few that are solvent and are wanting to sell. Folks with equity in their homes aren’t terribly inclined to compete with the lowball prices of the foreclosure down the street or the neighbors short sale.Owning a home in America will surely be a privilege in coming years. Even a status symbol much like it was when I was a boy growing up in New York City. Mom and Dad had six of us and we were renters until I was about 12 years old. It didn’t mean much to me, but my father was probably as proud of buying that first house as anything he had done before or after.Today’s financially troubled underwater homeowner is truly only a renter with no equity and an out of touch landlord. After all how can you own a home without equity in it? Bad decisions were made by tempting borrowers with unrealistic amounts of money based on an inflated valuation of the real estate involved. Borrowers responded to relentless marketing and the belief that they were or could be sitting on a pile of cash. Banks of course had little concern after packaging and selling the loans to investors like government sponsored entities Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac. Today these 2 corporations, after being seized by the government, continue bleeding cash to the tune of $150 billion. Oh by the way “seized by the government” at taxpayer expense.Banks however continue to flourish and boast about improving stock prices and bottom lines while still paying out lavish bonuses. Those who created the mess go unpunished and even rewarded. i.e. Countrywide Home Loans.The tangled web may be beyond repair. The country needs fresh ideas with humble heartfelt leadership. Our greatest shortcomings may be that we want to believe in someone and that we go through life with tunnel vision. If America continues trying to fix things that can’t be fixed simply because it benefits a few than the majority will continue to struggle as a result and we will evolve into a nation without a middle class affecting everything within it.

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