Reading Krugman today, he raises some concerns about Us, the people, bailing out the banking system without getting an ownership stake in the banking system.
My response to this prospect is: so? If taxpayers are footing the bill
for rescuing the banks, why shouldn’t they get ownership, at least
until private buyers can be found? But the Obama administration appears
to be tying itself in knots to avoid this outcome.
There are two good approaches I have heard about in regard to the bailout.
One is to create a parallel banking system to the current one that will handle the ‘credit crunch’ everyone is worried about. Let the existing banking system fail and then sell the new banking system to investors to recoup the people’s investment (and maybe make a profit.)
The second addresses the mortgage morass. The People can look at and underwrite all outstanding mortgages (I would only do this for primary residences and not for investment properties.) Basically, we look the current mortgagee’s ability to pay on their mortgage. If they have a $750K mortgage and can only make payments on a $500K mortgage, we would step in and take over the $250K difference. In exchange, when the owner sells the house we would our $250K plus interest and 1/3 of the profit (if any). (I am assuming that the current owner may hold on to the property until the market rebounds and the house is once again worth more the $750K) This allows the mortgagee to keep a house at a price they can afford, maintains the mortgages underlying the mortgage bond market, hopefully stops the mounting pile of foreclosures, and steadies the financial foundations that are crumbling away.