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Americans Need Debt Relief -- Is Obama Brave Enough to Make It Happen?

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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-25-10 04:39 AM
Original message
Americans Need Debt Relief -- Is Obama Brave Enough to Make It Happen?

By Danny Schechter, AlterNet
Posted on January 25, 2010, Printed on January 25, 2010 /

Stung by the election of Scott Brown in Massachusetts, the abandonment of his health care initiative by members of Congress and fearful of a political backlash, President Obama may have realized that he himself is not "too big to fail." He has now "pivoted," to use a favorite phrase from the pundits, and shifted his focus to trying to fix a still deteriorating economy.

He has gone from coddling the banks to turning on them with strong rhetoric that has financial stocks reeling, and progressives cheering. Analysts who have looked at the content of his new rules though, say they are vague enough to dive a supertanker through. Another reform in name and gesture but not in reality!

The administration is also floating new proposals to reenergize a foreclosure relief program that has brought little relief to beleaguered homeowners. More liberal terms for loan repayments are being introduced especially for those who have trouble paying their mortgages because they have lost jobs.

Today, default/delinquency/foreclosure rates continue to skyrocket and soon there will be more prime mortgages in arrears than subprime ones. More than 25% of all homes are now "under water." Millions more families are at risk. Foreclosures continue to rise. The housing crisis at the center of the financial crisis has not been "fixed."

What to do? Doing nothing is no longer an option.

This crisis will spill over into the political arena unless the Administration does a lot more than it is doing.

For nearly two years, I have been calling to modify loans, not foreclose on homes. The government said they would do it but their programs dont appear to be working because banks and real estate companies make more money foreclosing than making deals that keep homeowners under their roofs.

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Demeter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-25-10 07:04 AM
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1. No. Any Other Questions?
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JoDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-25-10 08:05 AM
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2. Wouldn't do anything
for me. Because I'm dealing with the crippling terms of my federal student loan, I have not bought a house.

Maybe if we had a plan where you could opt for housing debt relief or school debt relief--but not both.
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adadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-25-10 08:28 AM
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3. Debt relief needs to expand
What would really help the middle class is to temporarily reinstate the deduction for credit card interest to help people get on their feet. They also need lower the cap for the deduction on student loan interest in addition to fixing the mortgage mess. The interest rates on student loans are way too high at 7.5%.
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