The Virtue of an extinct breed – the Housing crisis foretold

I found this comment about one of my favorite Congressmen, Iowa’s Jim Leach, in a piece by a long time critic of the Federal Government’s inattention to the looming Housing Crises. Of course, sensible Repubicans like Jim were largely hounded out of the Republican Party.

Jim Leach, a Republican former representative from Iowa, … argued two decades ago in Congress that the government-chartered mortgage companies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, were unfairly insulated from the real world.

They were not subject to the same financial standards and tax burdens as their competitors, he warned, and if they ran into trouble, an implicit government guarantee to back them up meant taxpayers would be left with the losses.

“There are times in public policy making that one can feel like Don Quixote,” Mr. Leach said of his repeated legislative battles to rein in the two companies’ growth.