Saturday, July 27, 2013

Federal Government Hinting they Will Engineer Diversity in Housing

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is now hinting or planting seeds that the Federal Government should be working to influence who houses get sold to in neighborhoods across the nation. They are suggesting that ethnic criteria from the national Census Data Base should be used to increase diversity in neighborhoods.

You think I am assuming too much – well just read what was printed in The Atlantic this week.

The federal Fair Housing Act of 1968 didn't simply prohibit discrimination in an era of starkly segregated cities. The law went one step more, requiring the government to also "affirmatively further" fair housing – to, in other words, proactively enable integration. In the four decades since, overt discrimination has clearly declined. But this second objective has remained much more elusive.

Last week, the Department of Housing and Urban Development published a long-awaited proposed rule that it believes will bring the Fair Housing Act and this still unachieved promise "into the 21st century." Speaking earlier this month to the NAACP, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan admitted that the requirement to enable integration had "proven largely to be a meaningless paper exercise without any teeth."

Wasn’t it bad enough that the Federal Government ushered in the housing collapse and ultimately our recession to begin with by forcing lending institutions to people who could not afford the loans? All of this was done with the wonderful and highly noble goal of increasing opportunities for lower income families and individuals to achieve the dream of home ownership.

The meltdown was the consequence of a combination of the easy money and low interest rates engineered by the Federal Reserve and the easy housing engineered by a variety of government agencies and policies. Those agencies include the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and two nominally private “government-sponsored enterprises” (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The agencies — along with laws such as the Community Reinvestment Act , eventually leading to a requirement that banks make loans to people with poor and nonexistent credit histories — made widespread homeownership a national goal. This all led to a home-buying frenzy and an explosion of subprime and other non-prime mortgages, which banks and the GSEs bundled into dubious securities and peddled to investors worldwide - investment vehicles called ‘Credit Default Swaps’.

Our most recent recession, one that we are still not nearly recovered from, was a result of
Social Engineering on the part of Progressive Washington Elites and those elected leaders who were tempted to follow along in order to pander for votes. Yes we can blame the Wall Street Guys - Hovering in the background was the knowledge that the federal government would bail out troubled “too-big-to-fail” financial corporations, including Fannie and Freddie.

(For proof of this accepted knowledge, please see Too Big to Fail: The Inside Story of How Wall Street and Washington Fought to Save the Financial System--and Themselvesby Andrew Ross Sorkin).

I have to tell you… I am more than frustrated that our government is spending very little time working on real solutions; and thinking that these types of programs are going to actually help.

Here’s a great idea – you want people of all races and creeds to afford a home – get the heck out of the way and let the market create more jobs that pay well and provide advancement opportunity!

But no… the easier path for these politicians and bureaucrats is to pander to more special rights and perceived victim grievances.

I seriously feel like I am living in an Orwellian novel.

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More than 4 Years in Office – Tired of ‘Speeches’ about Jobs & the Economy

President Barack Obama speaks about the economy during a visit to Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois July 24, 2013.

President Barack Obama delivered what aides billed as a major economic address at Knox College Wednesday.

Then why does it sound like a broken record?

Through two presidential campaigns and in the White House, Obama has repeatedly cribbed his own 2005 speech.

When asked by members of the press why so many of the speeches going back to his first campaign remain the same - Officials said… “These similarities are planned, and demonstrate the breadth of Obama’s commitment to improving jobs for the middle class.”

Translation“If we keep repeating the same lies and tired lines in speeches, uninformed voters will be naive enough to believe them”

However - Obama’s remarks on this past Wednesday, clocking in at over an hour, didn’t include any new policy proposals, but invoked many of his various plans introduced over the past four and a half years. Many of which were never put into action; and others either failed or were simply not good enough.

Remember his comment… “Shovel ready was just not as shovel ready as we hoped”.

The Whitehouse officially kicked-off ‘Recovery Summer’ in June of 2010.

Then in January of 2013 - So much for Obama’s “laser focus” on jobs.

President Barack Obama will let his jobs council expire this week without renewing its charter, winding down one source of input from the business community even as unemployment remains stubbornly high.

…Officials said “The president always intended for the council to fulfill its mission and then wind down, and said that Obama would continue to actively engage and seek input from business leaders about ways to accelerate job-creation and economic growth. Among the steps Obama plans to pursue are expedited permits for infrastructure projects”…

Question – Did it actually ‘fulfill its mission’?
Rhetorical question – the answer is a resounding NO!

Hmmm… Let’s see… In July of 2012 (exactly one year ago) - Obama Too Busy to Meet with Jobs Council, White House Says.

“President Barack Obama has not met with his jobs council for six months because he has too much on his plate, White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Wednesday.”

And as of July 2012 - The 26-member President's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness has not officially met since January, according to a Politico report. That article suggested that… “the group of business executives and CEOs might be reticent to appear with Obama as his reelection campaign heats up”.

The last official meeting of the 26-member President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness took place Jan. 17 2012 in the White House complex. Obama and a slew of other administration officials attended, including his then chief of staff, Bill Daley.

The panel held three “quarterly” sessions in 2011 with Obama: in February, June and October.

The Presidents explanation for the lack of meetings… “This has not been a show council. This has been a work council,” Obama declared during the January 2012 session, where the panel presented a report containing more than 60 recommendations aimed at stimulating job creation.

One thing we have learned for certain as we have watched this President and his Whitehouse Administration over the last several years – they strongly believe in Messaging & Marketing. Does anyone really believe that Obama would not advertise and publish anything that he does on behalf of the American People? No… he makes sure everything that is important to him is well covered by media and messaged to the nation by making a show of his efforts.

In July of 2012 – Many publications shared… “There’s the discomfort many business leaders may feel in appearing to embrace the president with his reelection bid in full swing.” 

Isn’t interesting that we don’t recall any of his Jobs Council members appearing with him during his re-election campaign; or many of them endorsing him.

Did he actually implement any of the 60 recommendations
from the panel of private sector advisers? Uh… NOPE!

In the six to seven months between January 2012 and July of 2012 – Obama he held 100 fundraisers. And guess how many meetings he held with his jobs council? None. Zero. Creating jobs has clearly not his priority.

The jobs council from day one – was a side show, a distraction, a marketing ploy of deceptive advertising.

My parents always drilled into me two things while growing up:

  1. Pay less attention to what someone says and more attention to what they actually do.
  2. Inspect What You Expect. 

From this man’s perspective – President Obama is an abysmal failure.

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