Pwnership Society

by digby

Having learned the lessons of Herbert Hoover, the Republicans are working overtime to solve the financial crisis. They are creating a full blown PR offensive to blame Democrats:

American Issues Project is launching the second phase of a major television advertising campaign today spotlighting the role congressional liberals played blocking oversight and reform of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which spurred the housing bubble and led to the failing economy. The initial ad buy is one million dollars and will begin running today on FOX News, CNN and CNN Headline News.

“Our ad seeks to set the record straight and let the American people know who is responsible for this $700 billion catastrophe,” said Ed Martin, the organization’s president. “While liberals and some in the media try to affix blame to the Bush Administration for the housing crisis and resulting financial meltdown, this is one case where the real impetus for all these troubles is crystal clear. It was not the free market but government supported and propped-up institutions Fannie and Freddie that are the root cause. All roads for this failure lead back to liberals and their close ties to these two government institutions.”

Keep in mind that this isn't really about the election at all. This an attempt to shape the narrative about the economic meltdown and the very real possibility of Republicans being in the wilderness for some time to come. They may not have learned from their historical economic errors, but they certainly learned from their historical political errors.

And, as we've noted before, this is one of the crudest racist attacks we've seen in a while. The liberals who ran Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac gave mortgages to blacks and Mexicans who everybody knows can't be trusted to manage their money and they ruined the economy for hardworking Real Americans.

As others have already noted, it's important that everyone remember this:

Fact Sheet: America's Ownership Society: Expanding Opportunities

"...if you own something, you have a vital stake in the future of our country. The more ownership there is in America, the more vitality there is in America, and the more people have a vital stake in the future of this country."

-President George W. Bush, June 17, 2004

The Challenge: America's Changing Society

Life in America is changing dramatically, and President Bush believes that the Federal government should change too to help meet the challenges of our times. American families should have choices and access they need to affordable health care and homeownership; Americans should have the option of managing their own retirement; and small businesses, which employ over half of all workers, need lower taxes and fewer government mandates so they can grow.

President Bush's Policies Promoting the Ownership Society

* Expanding Homeownership. The President believes that homeownership is the cornerstone of America's vibrant communities and benefits individual families by building stability and long-term financial security. In June 2002, President Bush issued America's Homeownership Challenge to the real estate and mortgage finance industries to encourage them to join the effort to close the gap that exists between the homeownership rates of minorities and non-minorities. The President also announced the goal of increasing the number of minority homeowners by at least 5.5 million families before the end of the decade. Under his leadership, the overall U.S. homeownership rate in the second quarter of 2004 was at an all time high of 69.2 percent. Minority homeownership set a new record of 51 percent in the second quarter, up 0.2 percentage point from the first quarter and up 2.1 percentage points from a year ago. President Bush's initiative to dismantle the barriers to homeownership includes:

o American Dream Downpayment Initiative, which provides down payment assistance to approximately 40,000 low-income families;

o Affordable Housing. The President has proposed the Single-Family Affordable Housing Tax Credit, which would increase the supply of affordable homes;

o Helping Families Help Themselves. The President has proposed increasing support for the Self-Help Homeownership Opportunities Program; and

o Simplifying Homebuying and Increasing Education. The President and HUD want to empower homebuyers by simplifying the home buying process so consumers can better understand and benefit from cost savings. The President also wants to expand financial education efforts so that families can understand what they need to do to become homeowners.

Now, we all know that George W. Bush is a dirty liberal from way back, so perhaps this doesn't count. Of course he would promote homeownership for lazy minorities who are trying to steal your money.

But it wasn't just him:

Before this year, officials here enthusiastically praised subprime lenders for helping millions of families buy homes for the first time. “I was aware that the loosening of mortgage credit terms for subprime borrowers increased financial risk,” Mr. Greenspan wrote in his recent memoir, “The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World.” “But I believed then, as now, that the benefits of broadened home ownership are worth the risk.”

Ok, ok. Those guys are now discredited bleeding heart liberals. But what about this guy:

Grover Norquist, an influential conservative tactician, said the ownership society could solidify the Republican Party just as Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal and Lyndon B. Johnson's Great Society were the foundation of a Democratic Party majority for generations.

"If this is successful, this will define the Bush administration for the next 100 years," Mr. Norquist said. "People who are more independent and don't feel dependent on the government are more likely to be available to the Republican Party."

That didn't go as planned, did it? It was a scam, as most Republican policies are, to benefit a few rich operators and aristocrats. It's the oldest story in the book.

And when it falls apart the only thing they have to fall back on is blaming liberals and their lazy clients, racial minorities.