Magazine article The American Conservative

Home Evasion

Magazine article The American Conservative

Home Evasion

Article excerpt

Good news for millions of Americans wearily chipping away at their mortgages, even as property values continue to plummet. Under a new government program, anyone with a loan guaranteed by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae and little or no home equity can get his payments radically cut. The catch: you have to be 90 days past due.

Need some extra Christmas cash? Perfect. Put Fannie off for the next three months, then let Uncle Sam work his mortgage magic.

"But what about the moral obligation to pay off a debt?" Kathleen Pender asks in the San Francisco Chronicle. Washington wiped that out a long time ago. If government has no obligation to live within its means, it can scarcely expect citizens to be more responsible. Besides, those predatory lenders had it in for us. "In a campaign fact sheet," Pender writes, "President-elect Barack Obama says he 'recognizes that the real victims in the subprime crisis are not the lenders, but the millions of borrowers who followed the rules and whose only crime was taking out mortgages that lenders told them they could afford. …

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