Happy Times Are Here Again

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Barack Obama was in Toledo today, giving a lengthy, detailed speech on the economy; slowly, he's adding more and more proposals to his generic "dudes, I got this" anti-panic agenda. The speech is up here, and the big proposal is this:

For those Americans in danger of losing their homes, today I'm also proposing a three-month moratorium on foreclosures.  If you are a bank or lender that is getting money from the rescue plan that passed Congress, and your customers are making a good-faith effort to make their mortgage payments and re-negotiate their mortgages, you will not be able to foreclose on their home for three months.  We need to give people the breathing room they need to get back on their feet.

That's an idea bandied around since last year, when Hillary Clinton proposed it. It's also, as Ben Smith points out, something Obama once proposed. This stage of the campaign, though, feels like 1992 or 1980 or even 1932, with the challenger, feeling his oats, proposing more action items as the big day gets closer. Combine it with Obama's attacks on Republicans and you start to see similarities to late stages of the FDR-Hoover race. (Late into the campaign, pundits like Mencken still thought Hoover would pull it off.) From an FDR speech at about this stage in the campaign:

The farmers of the United States know that today thousands of mortgages upon the farms of the United States are being foreclosed. The president stated that most of those mortgages now being foreclosed represented cases where the farmers were willing to have such mortgages foreclosed. I think I know the mind and the heart of the American farmer, and it is inconceivable to me that the president of the United States can believe that the farmers of the United States are willing and anxious to have foreclosed the mortgages upon their homes in which their fathers and mothers lived and died and in which their children were born.

If the president is sincerely of the opinion that these farmers are willing to be driven from their homes we cannot hope for any enthusiastic action upon his part to stop the foreclosures. I know that the last thing upon earth that a farmer wants is to be foreclosed, to give up his home, and it will be our aim to provide a practical and immediate remedy for the intolerable situation now existing.

At the same it feels like McCain's proposal for the government to buy up bad mortgages and provide a 30-year fixed rate is falling off the radar. But it's clearly the best thing McCain has going for him; hence Obama's attempt to short-circuit it.

UPDATE: To be clear, when I say the McCain plan is his "best bet" I mean that it's polling well. And the continued McCain rout in the polls suggests that Ayers Week did nothing for him.

NEXT: Fogies: Ready to Lead

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  1. For those Americans in danger of losing their homes, today I’m also proposing a three-month moratorium on foreclosures.

    For those Americans who put off buying a home because they were too expensive or you didn’t wish a debt that you couldn’t repay, we have something for you too. Heck, here’s another present.

  2. But, but, but Dave! Your learned Leftie readers here on these very electronic pages have stated that the bad housing loans were not the cause of this, the greatest depression since the fall of the Roman Empire!

    How can Sen. Obama possibly think that bailing out people who should have never gotten a mortgage to begin with is going to help?

    OC: Think of the Polar Bears.

  3. Why don’t we just introduce price controls? The Feds can set the mortgage rates, compensation etc. If you’re a high-risk borrower, you’ll still only pay a low interest rate. It’s high rates which cause foreclosure, right? Lower the rates, no more forclosures. The answers seem so simple.

  4. Paul,

    I was just thinking that about tthe Gold Standard. Let’s just set the price of gold at $37/oz and everybody can have some!

  5. I’ll say it just this once.

    Rich people that control the markets are, in fact, the boogity man.

    They have manipulated the oil and the banks and the government so much that now it is impossible for the everyday workin man to pay his bills. The only solution to the problem is to rescue the little people from the big bad banks.

    oh, and maybe another stimulus package, in case that other thing doesn’t get enough vo-

    umm in case the economy doesn’t get going

  6. It is settled: Bankers are killing Polar Bears and they should die.

    Who wants a pony?

  7. But, but, but Dave! Your learned Leftie readers here on these very electronic pages have stated that the bad housing loans were not the cause of this, the greatest depression since the fall of the Roman Empire!

    What on fucking Earth is the fireman on about now?

  8. GM, last time I had a pony, mom took it to Tijuana and I haven’t seen em since.

  9. I do! I need to feed it to my ever-growing debt monster!

  10. Hope and Change America is way better than old america. The all-powerful state rewards us for fucking up and because personal responsibility is so old-fashioned. That blasted demon of personal responsibilty might make people more self-sufficient and that, the state be damned, if people start thinking for themselves.

  11. “Dudes, I got this.”
    “You’re not president yet!”
    “Well let’s just put this whole bunch of craziness on hold until I am then”

  12. phalkor,

    You, my friend, are in luck! Because it does not matter who gets elected this time, you will get a free pony!

    Well, if Sen. Obama becomes president you don’t get one if you were productive in any business outside of writing college papers, writing political stuff for the Left, panhandling or collecting welfare checks. But otherwise, under the President Obama plan, you get a pony! The downside, if you are not getting a pony then you need to send one to the Treasure for proper pony equality.

    Under McCain? EVERYBODY gets a pony!

  13. Remember, Hope and Change is fair. Fairness is good.

    Bankers are bad. They never change anything and want to destroy Hope.

    Bankers have 2 legs, Hope and Change have 4.

    Four legs good, two legs bad.

  14. If Obama really cared about the poor, he’d give them six or nine month moratorium on foreclosures. Flint-hearted piker! Obama ’08: Someone New to be disappointed with.

  15. How about a forgiveness of all mortgage debt, kinda like that crackpot Pat Robertson was saying should be done with the National Debt every 10 years?

  16. I’m in favor of loading up the bailout with so many conditions that no one takes it.

    We should require that CEOs sell their daughters (or granddaughters if over 18) on ebay.

  17. What if I lose my pony?
    Can hope and change get me another one?

    If I see someone with more ponies than me, who do I report them to?

    All this fairness is getting me excited.
    PONY! PONY! PONY!

    (and CEO daughters…sweetcake)

  18. Barack Obama was in Toledo today, giving a lengthy, detailed speech on the economy; slowly, he’s adding more and more proposals to his generic “dudes, I got this” anti-panic agenda.

    Which is far preferable to McCain’s “I have an idea” spasm. “Spending freeze one everything but the 4 biggest parts of the government” no wait “Bailout” uh no … “He pals around with terrorists” wait I got it “Buy people’s mortgages!” hmmm, let’s see .. “Capital gains tax cuts.”

    I disagree with the moratorium, but conditions now are significantly different and worse than they were 6 months ago, so it’s not fair to call it a flip-flop. I’m sure if you proposed a $700 billion dollar bailout at the same time the Senate would vote against it 95-5.

    Is it just me or has the Montag-bot 150 short-circuited today?

  19. Heck, here’s another present.

    Wait, is this guy Canadian now?

    OMG LoneWacko was right! The NorthAmericanUnion is nigh!

  20. Phalkor

    If you lose your pony, it was obviously the fault of those evil bankers, or wall street types, or those meanie Repubs, or because you didn’t have a pony when you were growing up because your dad lost his job at the factory because of sweatshop labor in the far east.

    Don’t worry – suggar daddy ‘Bama will get you another one….and send the bill to the evil, rich folks. He’ll then shoot the extra ponies of those same rich folks – after all, they shouldn’t have more than you.

  21. You left out the part where he told the plumber in the crowd, who asked him a question about his taxes being raised, that he wanted to “spread the wealth around”.

  22. You left out the part where he told the plumber in the crowd, who asked him a question about his taxes being raised, that he wanted to “spread the wealth around”.

    You can view that 30 second clip here.

    “It’s good for everybody!”

    ;P

  23. Um, what?

    It’s like he took a bunch of National Review columns, put them in a blender, and published the results as a blog column.

    I’m not sure, but I think it means he doesn’t like liberals, but can’t quite explain why.

  24. So, let me get this straight… McCain wants the gub’mint to buy up all the bad mortgages at a premium, and people around here are calling Obama’s 3 month foreclosure moratorium a pony handout?

    Really?

  25. Oh, so that’s what English professors have to do with mortgages then? Ok, got it!

  26. Whether its Democrats or Republicans, I enjoy watching the losing party become totally unhinged in the latter half of October. It’s extremely entertaining.

  27. BDB, those of us that are suffering total clinical unhingement are extremely offended at your association.

  28. Renter,

    They’re both spouting populist idiocy, though at least Obama comes by it honestly, it’s the same sort of idicoy his party’s been advocating for at least 75 years. I don’t know McCain’s excuse is.

  29. 20/20 – Politically Incorrect Guide To Politics – 1 – 6 watch them. They mess up both of the canidates. They both suck and all you peeps wasting your time talking about them and not building up yourself for your own futures. Watch on youtube. there are 6 of them and only based on what comes out of their own mouths. But i mean what does not come out of there mouths.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Phs6CwnutoY

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