Thursday, February 19, 2009

Trading freedom for fairness

The headline of this morning's Wall Street Journal reads, "Housing Bailout at $275 Billion." The story is on President Obama's plan to "enable as many as five million homeowners who owe more than their home is refinance loans through government controlled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

This raises several questions. For example:

Wasn't it Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that got us into this economic crisis in the first place? Didn't the Democrats learn anything from that fiasco?

Since I am one of those people who now owe more on my home than it is worth, why should I (if not for my Christian integrity) pay any more mortgage payments? Why not just go in default so the government will refinance my home and lower my payments? Why should anyone in my situation continue to pay their mortgage?

But I will continue to pay my mortgage on time--so is it "fair" that others in my community will use my tax dollars to lower their mortgages, while those of us who still have a sense of integrity and self-respect will continue making payments on homes which are no longer worth what we own on them? Is that fair? Don't get me wrong. I don't mind helping people who are in danger of loosing their homes due to events beyond their control, for example, illness or company layoffs. But will President Obama's plain distinguish between those who are down on their luck, and those who just chose to live beyond their means? If not, why should those of use who try to live within our means pay for those who don't? Is that fair?

If the government can just step in an re-do a private mortgage contract, why would any private bank or mortgage company ever again loan money for a mortgage? Would you loan money to someone if you knew the government would come in after the fact and tell that person that they no longer have to pay you back the full amount? If we didn't know better we might think this was a brilliant socialist scheme to turn American into the United States Socialist Republik!

It seems to me that the Democrats' response to virtually every problem is to throw money at it (your money!) and to regulate it. Fairness seems to be the battle cry. It's just not fair that people owe more than their house is worth. Its just not fair that so many people are getting laid off. So the government throws a trillion dollars at the problem and regulates it.

The American people are going to have to choose whether they want freedom or fairness. You can't have both. But if you choose fairness, beware. Even if every single politician in government had absolutely pure motives and the best intentions, fairness is an illusive and impossible goal. What seems fair to someone will often seem intensely unfair to someone else.

If we trade away our freedom for fairness, we will not have either.


St.Lee said...

"United States Socialist Republik!"

I kind of prefer the ring of U.S.S.A. - Union of Socialist States of Amerika

Oct3 said...

I think there are valid arguments on both side about this government plan. Will it raise the budget deficit? Probably. Will it help? That’s a good question. I think economies go through cycles and this might be one of them. I read a good article on recessions and their history on

Jason said...

I don't think it is as easy as you are making it out to be. Let's just say that Bush never did the rebates last year and Obama didn't do the stimulus this year. More than likely within the next 2-3 years we could see the highest unemployment since the GD and it could last a LONG time. So you have to ask the you try to manage the crisis and stave off a long recession or do you do nothing and let people go hungry and out in the streets? Yes, it's not fair. It's not fair that you get social security and I won't when I retire. It's unfair that because of greed and corruption we have the crisis we have today. So, do we let it just happen? Or do we as a nation decide to pull together and shed some grace on the people that were or were not responsible. Either way the sooner we get people back into paying for their houses again and get more jobs on the table, the better for everyone.

Linda Jones said...

It was Esau in Genesis who traded his (freedom/rights) for a bowl of pottage because he was too hungry to wait for someone else to fix food and chose Joseph's bargain.
When we get into a survivor mentality, we sacrifice our rights because we panic and cannot see other alternatives which may not be as convenient.

Dennis said...

I don't know, maybe I'm too simple minded but I would think that before we throw a TRILLION dollars of your children's money at a problem, we might want to be reasonably sure that it is actually going to fix the problem!

No one can even tell us if this stinking bailout robbery is going to work! In fact, the Democrats are hinting that even more bailouts may be necessary!

Some people are saying that it is now impossible for the U.S. government to even pay all this money back without just printing more and more money--which is like pouring more and more water into the dilutes the Koolaid, i.e makes the money worth less and less which means that everything we now pay for food, housing, clothing, transportation, and even interest on debt--everything, will go up and up.

So your money will be worth less and less. Remember Germany before WWII? I hope it won't get that bad but as I said, Democrats tell us that the trillion dollar stimulus may not be enough--which means they are open to throwing even more and more money at the problem!

President Obama said recently that the stimulus package should put an extra $65 per month in the average American's pocket. We spend a trillion dollars and the average American gets $65 bucks? And he thinks that's going to help? Is he kidding?!

Ahh, but at least some politicians (mostly Democrats) will get some pet projects for their districts and will be able to payback special interest groups (like ACORN and the NEA!) which helped them get elected.

Meanwhile, some of the strings attached to this money will obligate the states to raise future entitlement budgets to cover their increased federally mandated obligations.

This is insanity!