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Maxine Waters Proposes Mortgage Help Instead of Wall St. Bailout

Yesterday, U.S. Representative Maxine Waters reintroduced the Systematic Foreclosure Prevention and Mortgage Modification Act so that it may be considered by the current Congress. Referred to by shorthand as H.R. 37, the legislation would authorize the FDIC to cover one thousand dollars in expenses for lenders who renegotiate more sustainable terms for the mortgages of people who are nearing foreclosure on their houses. The FDIC would also guarantee half the worth of renegotiated mortgages.

The best part is where the money to pay for the FDIC’s mortgage restructuring costs would come from – money originally allocated for a Wall Street bailout. Instead of handing out money to Wall Street investors, as part of a liquidity scheme that has failed to work, government assets would be used to provide the structure necessary for ordinary Americans to stay in their homes. (I’m basing this statement on funding from the original bill, H.R. 7326, introduced to Congress on December 10, 2008, without enough time for consideration before the 110th Congress closed up shop for good. The resubmitted version of the bill, H.R. 37, is not yet available to be read by the public.)

Waters’s legislation looks like a plan that could responsibly protect our nation from true economic disaster. But will it have the lobbyists required to gain passage?

13 thoughts on “Maxine Waters Proposes Mortgage Help Instead of Wall St. Bailout”

  1. Voltaire says:

    I really can’t see the advantage to bailing out people, no matter who they are at the tax payers expense. If they couldn’t afford a house before, what makes you think they can now.

    By the way I have no problem whatsoever with you donating part or all of your paycheck to what you believe in, just leave me out.

    The Government was never intended to guarantee a home to everyone! Unless you are confusing the type of Government we have with one you want us to have…..

  2. Truman says:

    Voltaire, that’s ignorant nonsense. The Constitution explicitly grants Congress the power to act in promotion of the general welfare. If people having homes to live in isn’t part of the general welfare, nothing is.

  3. Voltaire says:

    You’re probably right Comrade, The problem with the stupidity coming from your head is that that concept could be used to cover anything someone as ignorant as YOU could come up with. Does the constitution also grant the power to take other peoples money to pay for these projects?

    Yeah, I remember from history class the vast housing projects that the Newly formed US Government was building for the waves of new immigrants.
    Tell me Truman are you really that stupid or are you just ideologically blind? Only someone in their twenties or thirties could believe that crap!

    1. Truman says:

      Voltaire, I am very sorry that you think that the system established by the Constitution of the United States of America is stupid. How would you like to amend the Constitution in order to change it?

  4. Jim says:

    Article 1, Section 8: “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States”.

    16th Amendment: “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.”

  5. Voltaire says:


    Don’t try that sophistry on me. The context of “the General Welfare Clause” has always been interpreted narrowly. To expand the meaning to included buying homes for people is absurd. You two have been school in the School of Marxist ideology a little to thoroughly.

    The abuse you seek to loose upon the meaning of the Constitution isn’t new at all. As a matter of fact the very substance of your intent was addressed by Hamilton in the Federalist papers. The Federal Government was meant to have very limited powers by the founding Fathers. And I am sure contrary to the concept ingrained in your week and opportunist minds, bailing people out of deft from over spending, by levying new taxes was never a power the Constitution’s Framers never intended to grant.

    Nice try though. Try as you may, your still going to have to fire a shot…..

    Read the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution to get a very clear picture of the powers meant for the Federal Government.

    “ The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. ”
    The articles of Confederation also give Historical depth to the powers granted to the Constitution.


    1. Jim says:

      Actually, the Hamiltonian view is not as limited as you suppose. I think you mean to refer to Madison’s position. The Hamiltonian position expansively interpreting the General Welfare clause has been adopted by the Supreme Court. See for example Helvering v. Davis (1937). Here’s an excerpt:

      2. The scheme of “Federal Old-Age Benefits” set up by Title II of the Social Security Act does not contravene the limitations of the Tenth Amendment. P. 301 U. S. 640.

      3. Congress may spend money in aid of the “general welfare.” P. 301 U. S. 640.

      4. In drawing the line between what is “general” welfare, and what is particular, the determination of Congress must be respected by the courts, unless it be plainly arbitrary. P. 301 U. S. 640.

      5. The concept of “general welfare” is not static, but adapts itself to the crises and necessities of the times. P. 301 U. S. 641.

      6. The problem of security for the aged, like the general problem of unemployment, is national, as well as local. Cf. Steward Machine Co. v. Davis, ante, p. 301 U. S. 548. P. 301 U. S. 644.

      Unless you’re going to go back to Marbury v. Madison to dispute the authority of the Supreme Court to interpret the meaning of the Constitution, you’re not on very firm ground here.

  6. Voltaire says:

    So Jim, I take it that you believe that you, I and every other taxpayer should be indenture by the Federal government to rescue those people who cannot afford the home they bought. And as a result of tilting the law of supply and demand, inflated the cost of housing in general. You apparently believe that it is the responsibility of the Government to cloth, feed and house the people in this country that have made choices that don’t reflect good husbandry? How far are you willing to go? When is the individuals need to live off of the largess of the public larder more of a burden that should be shouldered by the people who have chosen wisely. Who’s responsibility is it to decide that my money should be taken from me by the Government to redistribute to those that they see as more deserving than I.

    The very Idea that you propose such a system of forced redistribution is evidence of a mass marketing of the idealist( religious ) notion that the Government is in a better position to be a charitable giver than I am. Let’s keep our religious programs where they belong, in our churches and charity organizations that are not tied intimately with the power to forcibly extort our money. Your god for you, mine for me. remember the separation of Church and State thing. Don’t try to fool people by saying that you are an a-theist. The same type of plunder of the Nations Wealth in the form of such an idealist scheme by any Christian group would have foaming at the mouth.
    I would be willing to bet that you have very little to contribute to the Tax Roll, and as such it is nothing more that ideological chatter.

    I would suggest that the “condition” of the Ponzi scheme that you call “Social Security” is a good indication of why the Federal Government should rightfully limit it’s role in the General Welfare.

    It was FDR who created much of the mess that we are in now as far as overarching Federal powers. But I guess he would be your Poster Boy.

    At what point does the “general welfare” of a minority come into a conflict with the “General Welfare” of the country as a whole? When the whole country lies in financal ruins, and there are no “haves and have nots” only have nots?

    1. F.G. Fitzer says:

      So, Voltaire, I take it that you eat toads raw.

  7. Voltaire says:

    Only frogs and lightly buttered, with a fine Chablis.

  8. Russell says:


    In defence of voltaire you left out his point in your helvering v davis “in drawing the line between what is “general welfare” and what is particular, the determination of congress must be respected by the courts, UNLESS IT BE PLAINLY ARBITRARY”

    Religious tenets have been for the last five thousand years been to tend to the poor, the needy, the fatherless the widow, the homeless and the naked.

    Now if Congress has assumed those powers would it not be plainly aritrary for Congress to assume the powers of religion and the church? how would that affect the first amendment but by violation by making laws that force you to work religious tenets, clearly the constitution does not delegate power to the government to take over the power of religion.

    consider this letter from thomas jefferson.

    “I consider the government of the U.S., as interdicted by the constitution from intermeddling with Religious institutions, their doctrines, discipline, or exercises.
    This results not only from the provision that no law shall be made respecting the establishment, or free exercise, of religion, but from that also which reserves to the states the powers not delegated to the U.S.
    Certainly no power to prescribe any religious exercise, or to assume authority in religious discipline, has been delegated to the general government. It must then rest with the states, as far as it can be in any human authority.
    But it is only proposed that I should recommend, not to prescribe a day of fasting & prayer. That is, that I should indirectly assume to the U.S. an authority over religious exercises which the constitution has directly precluded them from.
    It must be meant too that this recommendation is to carry some authority, and to be sanctioned by some penalty on those who disregard it; not indeed of fine and imprisonment, but some degree of proscription perhaps of public opinion.
    And does the change in the nature of the penalty make the recommendation the less a law of conduct for those to whom it is directed?
    I do not believe it is for the interest of religion to invite the civil magistrate to direct it’s exercises, it’s discipline, or it’s doctrines; nor of the religious societies that the general government should be invested with the power effecting any uniformity of time or matter among them.
    Fasting and prayer are religious exercises. The enjoining them an act of discipline.
    Every religious society has a right to determine for itself the times for these exercises, and the objects proper for them, according to their own particular tenets; and this right can never be safer than in their own hands, where the constitution has deposited it.”
    (Letter to Rev. Samuel Miller, 23 January 1808 by Thomas Jefferson.)

    1. Jim says:

      “Religious tenets have been for the last five thousand years been to tend to the poor, the needy, the fatherless the widow, the homeless and the naked. Now if Congress has assumed those powers would it not be plainly aritrary for Congress to assume the powers of religion and the church?”

      I love this line of argument, and not just because it ignores the “religious tenets” to engage in slaughter, discrimination and the extraction of wealth. It’s just so deliciously absurd to suggest that if a religious organization has ever done anything, then no other social organization can legitimately do it. Bishops have, for the last two thousand years, gone potty. Now if Congress installs potties would it not be plainly arbitrary for Congress to assume the functions of the church?

      That letter from Jefferson has nothing to do with general welfare provision. It has to do with government prescribing, or recommending, or otherwise endorsing days of fasting and/or prayer.

    2. F.G. Fitzer says:

      Fun with Russell’s logic: For the past five thousand years, priests have worn shoes! Now that members of Congress are wearing shoes, they are proving that the USA is a Christian nation!

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