Short memory in housing crisis

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The short-term memory of some folks is absolutely phenomenal but actually pales in comparison to a disease infecting American minds at an alarming rate: Selective Memory User Timing or SMUT. I refer to the ranting of one Cornelius Ough (Reader Input, Dec. 14), stating that Barney Frank was in some way responsible for the “housing crises” — that’s crisis by the way. Then President G.W. Bush very proudly announced in a speech way back in 2001, or was it 02, that his goal was to see to it that every American should own a house. The lenders lent money to unemployed, under-qualified folks with reverse and no-money-down mortgages, knowing full well that when the balloon payment or sliding mortgage scale went skyrocketing, they would be forced to default on those very dubious loans. Additionally, they packaged those bad loans and sold them to pension funds and hedge funds so as to limit their exposure once the foreclosures started. To make matters worse, they traded them on the stock exchanges as derivatives and duped AIG into fully insuring these bundles of worthless paper called home loans. When the loans began to default in bunches, it almost caused a worldwide financial crisis. Now we learn that our Federal Reserve loaned $7.7 trillion to the very banks that made those horrible loans. And what did they do with the interest-free bailout loans? They bought U.S. treasury bonds and made(stole) a tidy 3 percent on them, amounting to some $13 billion in profits, which they paid out in monster bonuses to their execs. Congress was kept in the dark, but you go ahead and blame Barney Frank if you like. He seems an easy mark, if your head is in the sands of time. Stan Brulenski, Auburn