Russ Roberts at Cafe Hayek posted a link to this story in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal.

The Obama administration is close to committing as much as $35 billion to help beleaguered state and local housing agencies continue to provide mortgages to low- and moderate-income families, according to administration officials.The move would further cement the government’s role in propping up the housing market even as some lawmakers push to curb spending at a time of rising debt.

If this doesn’t cause you to stop and ponder the New Era of Responsibility, you may want to check your pulse.  This one disturbs me on several levels.

  1. This isn’t responsible.
  2. This sounds very much like the root cause of the stuff that got us into the previous mess – making home loans available to people who can’t afford them.
  3. This is a blatant and perfect example of how political pressures limit government’s ability to do stuff that sound politically popular on the surface, but have bad results.
  4. It perpetuates the idea that home ownership is right for everyone, rather than it being right mainly for the people who actually exhibit the responsible behaviors that usually qualifies one to own a home.


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