Leave it to leftist Hollywood to completely circumvent the truth of the sub-prime mortgage fiasco and turn it into more class warfare against the evil capitalists. Here are quotes they are using to advertise this left-wing socialist propaganda titled "American Casino" that is playing in select cities:
“American Casino is a powerful and shocking look at the subprime lending scandal. If you want to understand how the US financial system failed and how mortgage companies ripped off the poor, see this film.”
"Investigative reporters Leslie and Andrew Cockburn have spent nearly 30 years uncovering major stories (for PBS, CBS Reports, 60 Minutes, et alia), but with "American Casino" they take on the biggest economic crisis of our lifetime: the subprime mortgage meltdown that has caused more than a million Americans to lose their homes. The Cockburns interview Wall Street wizards who are as nervous about revealing their identity as any mobster in the witness protection program; they rewind to Phil Gramm (R, Texas) calling us "a nation of whiners... (facing) a mental recession"; they replay Alan Greenspan's admission that his ideology was "flawed"; and they put a human face on the victims of bankers who targeted minority communities with no-income verification loans, adjustable rates (that adjusted upwards, dramatically), and complex language that even the pros can't fathom. Out of this mess, the filmmakers build a case against those who used government deregulation to make a fortune for the few and create havoc for the many."
"Leslie Cockburn’s debut feature gets to the guts of the matter, visiting defectors from Bear Stearns and Standard & Poor’s and other high-level players in the subprime mortgage gamble and, on the flipside, visiting the working-class Americans who were the unwitting chips on the table."
REALLY!! HONESTLY!! Where do I start here? Let's concentrate on the bold of the quotes. Mortgage companies "ripped off the poor?"
Meet Joe Poor. Joe works at the grocery store and makes $30k a year ($2500 monthly). Joe decides to buy a home after some evil mortgage companies dare to advertise their business in the daily newspaper. After all, it's the American dream and Joe feels "entitled" to this. He finds the home he wants and before closing the deal he sees that the monthly mortgage payment is $1,200. The little voice inside Joe's head tells him that he cannot afford the payment (or maybe Joe isn't smart enough to have a little voice), but Joe WANTS his new house and signs all of the documents to purchase. After some time it becomes apparent that Joe cannot make the payments on his home. After a length of time goes by with Joe failing to make his mortgage payment, the evil mortgage company forecloses on his home.
Scenario #2- after seeing his monthly mortgage will be $1200, Joe tells the mortgage company he cannot afford that type of monthly payment. The evil mortgage company tells him not to fear, they can give him an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) which will lower his interest rate and his monthly payment to $700 a month. Joe signs the documents and purchases his home. After 3 years Joe gets his new payment booklet from the mortgage company and is alarmed to see that his monthly payments are going up to $1400 a month. Joe stops making payments and the evil mortgage company forecloses, having tricked poor Joe with the EXTREMELY "complex language" of Adjustable Rate Mortgage.
Okay, call me cruel, but I stand for personal responsibility in most incidents in life. If you are going to sign any type of contract in life, especially one dealing in hundreds of thousands of dollars, are you signing anything which contains "complex language that even the pros can't fathom?" If you ask the agent what this or that means in the contract and he/she cannot explain it, are you signing the document? If you do sign the document, not understanding what you're signing, is it not your own fault? If I asked my 13 year old son what he thinks "adjustable rate" means regarding a mortgage, I am certain he would have an idea of what that might mean.
None of these alleged "low income" or "working class" Americans were "unwitting chips on the table."
Personal responsibility has been eroding for decades and has now sunken to the level where people actually have the gall to openly believe they are the victims when they fail to uphold their end of a promise or contract. Once upon a time if you failed to pay your bills your services were turned off or taken away, and you were embarrassed. In our current degraded society you go hunting for someone to blame.
The true "tragedy" of the sub-prime mortgage fiasco is the government bailing out these irresponsible people (once referred to as deadbeats) with our taxpayer dollars. If there's anyone who can truly be referred to as "unwitting chips on the table" it is the hard-working Americans who pay their mortgages every month. We have been forced to pay for our own mortgage, as well as the mortgage of our deadbeat (yes I said it) neighbor. This is another example of socialist concepts being forced upon our nation.
And yes, my liberal friends about to blow their top, I realize and remember that it was George W. Bush who signed this bailout. I had a HUGE problem with him on that issue. Unlike liberals, conservatives remain objective and able to criticize anyone they disagree with, even those who claim to be conservative.