Sidebar to "The Young Imam and the ruling class"


An insight from the Left:
As through a glass, darkly

In her CounterPunch piece, Pam Martens touches on another issue that deserves comment, when she quotes the leftist outfit United for a Fair Economy: "According to federal data, people of color are three times more likely to have subprime loans: high-cost loans account for 55 percent of loans to blacks, but only 17 percent of loans to whites." Martens is concerned here to criticize the Obama-friendly "Wall Street firms whose shady mortgage lenders buried the elderly and poor and minority under predatory loans," but analysts on our side of things would wish to remind Americans of the attack on red-lining in the 1990s and the state harassment of lenders that intimidated them into doing risky business with the financially unready.

Ralph Nader apparently served as the ruling class's stalking horse for purposes of this particular market distortion. In 1996, I wrote in Dark Suits and Red Guards:

All we really need to know about Nader's demands for antiwhite discrimination in mortgage lending is that they have been endorsed by the Fed, the American Bankers Association, and the money-center banks — banks that reap their profits not from lending to Joe (or Leroy) Sixpack in Midvale, Missitucky, but by making taxpayer-guaranteed loans to authoritarian Third World regimes such as Mexico's. Whatever rope the financial titans are selling to Nader will be used to hang their smaller, less well-connected cousins. (p. 38)
It's quite possible that the mortgage meltdown has proceeded beyond what the Dark Suits envisioned, and that they themselves are now feeling some unforeseen and quite painful tightness about the neck; but our masters, while clever, are not omniscient.

After all, in 2000 they certified George W. Bush as a conceivable president, didn't they?

March 6, 2008

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