Dealbook had an item about the qualified mortgage rule and the bid by mortgage lenders to acquire a “safe harbor,” essentially a shield against consumer lawsuits, in the process. I’ve already gone over this topic and continue to oppose giving banks a safe harbor of any kind on the merits. But just to shift gears away from the precise details for a moment, consider why you would want to give any entity that does something like this protection from legal exposure:
|By: David Dayen Thursday December 20, 2012 5:54 am|
|By: fatster Thursday December 20, 2012 4:45 am|
❖ What a moment awaits us: On December 21, the NRA will be saying something about Newtown.
❖ Two Irving, TX women (an aunt and her niece) are filing a federal lawsuit claiming that Texas State Troopers performed cavity searches (without changing gloves) after they were pulled over for tossing a cigarette butt out the car window. They were eventually charged with littering.
❖ Good on them! Orleans Parish, LA’s School Board has voted to “ban the teaching of creationism as science” and the “‘revisionist’ history curriculum promoted by the state of Texas.”
|By: David Dayen Wednesday December 19, 2012 10:51 am|
Empowering the likes of John McCain and Lindsey Graham to hold veto power over any nominee the Administration puts out is just deeply depressing.
|By: David Dayen Wednesday December 19, 2012 7:51 am|
The President will support a reinstatement of the assault weapons ban in the wake of the mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut. He will also “consider” legislation limiting extended magazines that carry a high capacity of bullets, as well as legislation closing the “gun show loophole,” which enables gun purchasers to avoid background checks by buying them at gun shows.
|By: fatster Wednesday December 19, 2012 4:45 am|
News Flash! “The soon to be former blogger, David Dayen, explains what would happen if we went over the ‘fiscal cliff’, why the new Obama offer is so bad, why he Dayen is leaving blogging.” More.
❖ Richard Engle, NBC News Chief Foreign Correspondent, and two others “have escaped from heavily-armed captors during a fire-fight five days after being abducted in Syria.” Their captors appear to have been Syrian loyalists.
❖ From Mrs. N Turner to UK Prime Minister David Cameron: ”Are the British public now being asked to accept that, despite incontrovertible evidence of multiple criminal acts by bankers, including money-laundering, drug-money-laundering, Libor rigging, multiple frauds and assorted Ponzi schemes, bankers are considered to be immune from prosecution?”
|By: David Dayen Tuesday December 18, 2012 3:10 pm|
You will hear virtually nobody claim that chained CPI represents a more accurate way of determining the cost of living for senior citizens on Social Security, because if they were honest about it, they would tailor an inflation index to the real costs of seniors. The only benefit to chained CPI is that it saves the government money at the expense of senior citizens. That’s it. It’s a back-door way of lowering the benefit.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday December 18, 2012 2:30 pm|
Tom Lawler pulls out an interesting piece of data from the latest housing statistics. Foreclosures have been dropping in 2012, mainly because of the rise of short sales as a foreclosure alternative. This appears to be changing – the repossession rate in November was 11% above that of October and even up 5% year-over-year – but Lawler is looking back at data, not forward at the recent trend.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday December 18, 2012 2:01 pm|
While we wait for more settlements in the Libor case, banks continue to face exposure for their fraudulent mortgage conduct dating back to the housing bubble. Two more major lawsuits emerged yesterday.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday December 18, 2012 11:41 am|
Before this fight gets waged there has to be some understanding of what problem needs to be solved. I completely agree with Mark Kleiman that asking “how do we stop the type of shootings we saw in Newtown” risks solving the wrong problem. The gun safety debate should not just focus on protecting children, and it may not be accurate to tailor policies toward preventing mass shootings. There are certainly things we can do to curtail the 9,000-odd homicides with guns used each year, but they may not be applicable to the case of the young, mostly white, often mentally disturbed individuals who commit mass murder, often out of a need for attention, which is then lavished upon them by the news media.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday December 18, 2012 8:25 am|
First of all, this is a benefit cut of about 0.3% a year, as Dean Baker points out. He adds that “This loss would be cumulative through time so that after 10 years the cut would be roughly 3 percent, after 20 years 6 percent, and after 30 years 9 percent.” Actually if we started using chained CPI in 2002, we’d be 3.6% behind today. That’s well over $1,000 a year, and the situation grows worse over time. So the greatest impact would be on the oldest seniors, which happens to correlate with the poorest.