You are currently browsing the daily archive for March 6, 2009.
There’s a show on ABC on Wednesdays night with that name – which you have to check if only for Harvey Keitel.
It’s a remake of an excellent British series. The premise being – a cop in 2008 wakes after an accident in 1973. While figuring what happened he has to adjust – and in the process, present and past are compared.
There is a character from the original show – a woman sargent who is reduced to the role of a secretary by the macho crew. The American version ramped the sexism aspects more – having the other cops call her “No Nuts” and at times becoming angry when she has brilliant ideas in solving a case or shows bravery. In one such a moment she asks the irate colleague whose life she just saved: “Just what it is that scares you so about me?”
Last night’s episode dealt with the Weather Underground – a college professor et al who blew up 3 cops and were stopped from blowing up a fourth. I wish this aired before the election, but I still enjoyed watching it after the Ayers’s rehabilitation media tour. They were referred as terrorists and hypocrites. I think they also did a good job with the rhetoric which switched very fast from idealistic, anti-war to murderous fanatic.
And now I just found out it has been cancelled – so, hurry and watch it
The much trumpeted housing rescue
On Wednesday, the Obama administration released guidelines on its plan to stem the collapse of the housing market with its “Making Home Affordable” initiative, or Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan (HASP). The plan claims to offer “assistance to as many as 7 to 9 million homeowners.”
But on the way to the forum, a few changed occurred:
The newly-announced guidelines pertaining to private lenders make clear that the program’s primary aim is not to assist homeowners, but to further prop up the banks. The plan does not reduce the grossly overvalued debt homeowners owe banks. It will not affect homeowners “underwater” by more than 5 percent—that is, those who owe more than 5 percent more than their homes’ current market value.
Not surprisingly, the plan immediately won the vocal support of the major banks, including Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo.
They got what they lobbied (and campaign contributed) for
An Associated Press article pointed out the financial industry’s power in altering the legislation. “The changes bring the legislation closer in line to what President Barack Obama’s administration has sought and what the banking lobby finds acceptable,” the article notes. The Washington Post added that “the financial services industry, which has lobbied against the bill, fought for all [the new] provisions.”
Besides limiting the number of people to qualify, the program now imposes hurdles on them to demonstrate financial hardship and makes court redress much more difficult.
In related news, Moody’s Economy Mark Zandy predicts that
It could be a decade before the Dow reaches 12,000 points again, the economy will grow much more slowly than the Obama administration envisions and larger, more controversial bailouts are likely to be coming soon.
And in light of Obama’s ineffectual actions, Krugman appears to agree
But this refusal to face the facts means, in practice, an absence of action. And I share the president’s fears: inaction could result in an economy that sputters along, not for months or years, but for a decade or more.