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Any validity to "Capitalism: A Love Story"?

samsmart

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So I watched "Capitalism: A Love Story" for the first time a few weeks ago, and I was wondering if there's any validity to the issues presented in the movie. Those individual issues that I see presented in the movie are as follows:

1) The reduction of the income tax rates on the wealthiest in the United States which puts too much of a tax burden on the middle class which causes them to fall into an exceedingly high level of consumer debt.

2) Fewer rights for employees and unionized labor as compared to other nations, and how this results in corruption by executives without workers to serve as an adequate check against executives in the running of the business.

3) How the costs of training professionals for certain occupations exceeds the income earned from an average salary in that occupation, which forces too many Americans into too high of a level of debt.

4) Corruption with regards to the privatization of government services, shown in the movie as the "Cash for Kids" scandal concerning juvenile detention centers.

5) The unfairness of the government bailing out banks but not families whose homes are being foreclosed on.

I'd rather there be no comments directly about Michael Moore or his filmmaking but rather a discussion of the issues of the film and how those issues can be resolved.
 

Zyphlin

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Just on the first part I don't quite see how that makes sense...

If you reduce the tax on the middle class they pay less in taxes, regardless of whether or not you also reduce it on the rich.

IE...if the middle class pays 30% of their income in taxes and that's reduced to 15%, then they're paying 15% less in taxes regardless of whether or not the wealthy are being charged 70% or 50%. The wealthy ALSO getting a tax break shouldn't magically make the middle class have to pay more in taxes in total because there's no way that would actually feasibly work.

Say you start with a middle class person making $100 and taxed at 30% and a high class person taxed at %50. The middle class person pays $30 in taxes. Now lets say you give that middle class person a 15% tax rate instead but keep the higher class person still at 50%, that middle class person now pays $15 in taxes. However, if you reduce the higher class person to 30% along with the middle class person being put to 15%, the middle class person still only pays $15.

So why in the world would reducing it on both cause the middle class to go into debt, but somehow reducing it JUST on the middle class would not?

That just makes no logical sense to me.
 

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My brother, who is a bit more moderate than me, but still a libertarian leaning guy, watched this movie a few weeks ago and said it raised some interesting points. On his recommendation, I've been wanting to check it out.

So I watched "Capitalism: A Love Story" for the first time a few weeks ago, and I was wondering if there's any validity to the issues presented in the movie. Those individual issues that I see presented in the movie are as follows:

1) The reduction of the income tax rates on the wealthiest in the United States which puts too much of a tax burden on the middle class which causes them to fall into an exceedingly high level of consumer debt.

I'm actually much more concerned the number of people who pay nothing in taxes. 47% of households in 2009 owed nothing in federal income taxes (or came out ahead thanks to tax credits). Even if you factor in payroll taxes which fund social security and medicare, 22% of households end up paying nothing into the federal coffers. It's easy to clamor for an expansion of government when you don't have to worry about paying for it. Source: 47% of households owe no tax - and their ranks are growing - Sep. 30, 2009

I don't object to progressive taxation, but I do think everyone should pay at least something. No free rides. Furthermore, I'd like to see the income tax brackets fixed and then tied together. All cuts or increases would be applied by the same percentage across the board. If you cut taxes by 10%, everyone's bill goes down 10%. Same if you want to raise it. No more of this tax those guys to pay for my entitlements. Everyone kicks into the pot. And everyone has a vested interest in seeing costs kept to a minimum.

2) Fewer rights for employees and unionized labor as compared to other nations, and how this results in corruption by executives without workers to serve as an adequate check against executives in the running of the business.

I'm not sure how unions or worker's rights serve as a check on executive corruption. I'm failing to see the connection. Perhaps you could explain this?

I do think unions have helped contribute to the downfall of many American factory jobs. Unions often obtain and then vigorously defend excessive retirement benefits. People are still retiring at 65 (or earlier with many employers being forced to offer early retirement in order to shed workers) when the national life expectancy continues to creep up. More and more people are living to collect their retirement benefits for longer and longer and it puts a strain on companies. Plus, unions often make it difficult to fire, lay off, or demote subpar workers.

Now, I'm not saying unions are all bad. The idea that the average worker has the same negotiating power as the average employer is laughable and we only need to pick up a history book to see the abuses corporations used to heap onto their workers before unions helped equalize the balance of power. But clearly, I think some things need to change if we want to remain competitive in unionized fields.

3) How the costs of training professionals for certain occupations exceeds the income earned from an average salary in that occupation, which forces too many Americans into too high of a level of debt.

This is a bit of a head scratcher for me. How is this even possible? The average 4 year public state school costs $7,605 a year for an in-state student. Multiply that by four years and a bachelor's degree costs about $30K. The average high school grad makes $30,400 annually. The average college grad with a bachelor's degree makes $52,200. Which means ifthe college grad lived at the same standard as the high school grad, he could pay off his student loans in two years and have cash to spare. Granted, most college grads are going to use a good portion of that extra income to upgrade their lifestyle instead of pay off low interest loans, but that's a personal choice.

Sources: College Costs - Average College Tuition Cost
Job Salary Earnings Comparison - College Degrees and High School Diploma

Maybe you could explain what I'm missing here.

4) Corruption with regards to the privatization of government services, shown in the movie as the "Cash for Kids" scandal concerning juvenile detention centers.
Obviously if government is going to subcontract some of its duties, it is government's responsibility to make sure those duties are being fullfilled competently, ethically, and legally. Something like this seems to be mainly about a lack of oversight on private businesses that performing government duties. Of course, the cost of providing the necessary amount of oversight and quality conrol measures may mean its no longer cost efficient to subcontract these duties, but if that's the case the government can simply reassume those duties.

5) The unfairness of the government bailing out banks but not families whose homes are being foreclosed on.

I would've preferred to see neither bailed out. Banks should be responsible for taking on too many high risk loans just as individuals should be responsible for buying homes they can't afford.
 

samsmart

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Just on the first part I don't quite see how that makes sense...

If you reduce the tax on the middle class they pay less in taxes, regardless of whether or not you also reduce it on the rich.

IE...if the middle class pays 30% of their income in taxes and that's reduced to 15%, then they're paying 15% less in taxes regardless of whether or not the wealthy are being charged 70% or 50%. The wealthy ALSO getting a tax break shouldn't magically make the middle class have to pay more in taxes in total because there's no way that would actually feasibly work.

Say you start with a middle class person making $100 and taxed at 30% and a high class person taxed at %50. The middle class person pays $30 in taxes. Now lets say you give that middle class person a 15% tax rate instead but keep the higher class person still at 50%, that middle class person now pays $15 in taxes. However, if you reduce the higher class person to 30% along with the middle class person being put to 15%, the middle class person still only pays $15.

So why in the world would reducing it on both cause the middle class to go into debt, but somehow reducing it JUST on the middle class would not?

That just makes no logical sense to me.

I believe the reason why is that by applying more progressive taxes on the wealthy but giving more tax breaks to the middle class there is less of a burden on the middle class. Essentially, progressive taxes allow more of the middle class to "enjoy" their money since they pay less to the government, which is made up for by having the wealthiest pay more, which they can do so without being burdened.

By giving tax breaks to the middle class along with the wealthy the burden on the middle class isn't eased at all, so there's no gain to the middle class.
 

Zyphlin

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But they don't pay less to the government. If they pay 15% to the government they pay 15% to the government regardless if the rich pay 50% or 30%. And regardless of whether or not the rich pay 50% or 30%, if the middle class goes from 30% to 15% they gain relief by keeping more of their money. I see what you're saying, but what you're saying doesn't compute in my head as having the outcome you're saying.

Not saying it IS wrong, god knows I'm not an economic master. I just don't understand it. I understand the notion of it putting more of the burden percentage wise on the middle class theoritically...but that doesn't change how much money they have in their pockets and thus how much money they need to borrow.
 
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samsmart

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My brother, who is a bit more moderate than me, but still a libertarian leaning guy, watched this movie a few weeks ago and said it raised some interesting points. On his recommendation, I've been wanting to check it out.

It raises many issues regarding America's current incarnation of capitalism. Many of them are on ethical issues regarding it. I'm not a Michael Moore fan, but neither am I a Michael Moore critic. At the very least it brings up a few good things to think about.

I'm actually much more concerned the number of people who pay nothing in taxes. 47% of households in 2009 owed nothing in federal income taxes (or came out ahead thanks to tax credits). Even if you factor in payroll taxes which fund social security and medicare, 22% of households end up paying nothing into the federal coffers. It's easy to clamor for an expansion of government when you don't have to worry about paying for it. Source: 47% of households owe no tax - and their ranks are growing - Sep. 30, 2009

I don't object to progressive taxation, but I do think everyone should pay at least something. No free rides. Furthermore, I'd like to see the income tax brackets fixed and then tied together. All cuts or increases would be applied by the same percentage across the board. If you cut taxes by 10%, everyone's bill goes down 10%. Same if you want to raise it. No more of this tax those guys to pay for my entitlements. Everyone kicks into the pot. And everyone has a vested interest in seeing costs kept to a minimum.

I think it is interesting that many "rightists" are concerned about how many people don't pay a net income tax because I think that many conservative politicians favor more people not paying as of an income tax so that money can instead be paid to private businesses that those conservative politicians tend to advocate.

I am not against a minimum income tax of some form. Especially if instead of paying money to the government a person can instead pay it through some kind of service on behalf of the government at the rate of the minimum wage. That way, those who don't want to or can't pay into it can instead pay into it through their labor.

Also, would you be opposed to having additional brackets on the high end of the progressive tax scale, so that someone who earns $10 million pays a higher rate than those who earn $1 million?

I'm not sure how unions or worker's rights serve as a check on executive corruption. I'm failing to see the connection. Perhaps you could explain this?

I do think unions have helped contribute to the downfall of many American factory jobs. Unions often obtain and then vigorously defend excessive retirement benefits. People are still retiring at 65 (or earlier with many employers being forced to offer early retirement in order to shed workers) when the national life expectancy continues to creep up. More and more people are living to collect their retirement benefits for longer and longer and it puts a strain on companies. Plus, unions often make it difficult to fire, lay off, or demote subpar workers.

Now, I'm not saying unions are all bad. The idea that the average worker has the same negotiating power as the average employer is laughable and we only need to pick up a history book to see the abuses corporations used to heap onto their workers before unions helped equalize the balance of power. But clearly, I think some things need to change if we want to remain competitive in unionized fields.

The way the film says that unionized workers help stem corruption in a business is because they get a say in how the business is run. There's much more bargaining between the workers and the executives, and because of that there are fewer abuses of workers by executives and management. The film also goes so far to state that the business operates better because of it.

I also understand the predicament that union pensions established corporations put on them when they compete against newer businesses who are not burdened nearly as much by pensions. That kind of thing is bad for everybody - the business, the pensioners, and the workers.

The thing is I don't know what could be done about that. Off the top of my head, I would say regulate pensions so that every business in a certain industry must pay the same amount of money into a pension per worker, so that every company, no matter how new or old they pay the same amount per worker. But that would take away the bargaining power of the union and give it to the government, and would have to implemented on the state level.

Do you think that instead of using unions America would be better suited to use guilds instead? A guild could set minimum standards of pay and working conditions for people in certain fields without taking away individual bargaining power. After all, look how well the Screenwriter's Guild of America did when it went on strike to secure minimum standards for their group without unionizing. Do you think guilds could be a good way for American workers and professionals to secure minimum pay rates and working standards without giving power to unions?

This is a bit of a head scratcher for me. How is this even possible? The average 4 year public state school costs $7,605 a year for an in-state student. Multiply that by four years and a bachelor's degree costs about $30K. The average high school grad makes $30,400 annually. The average college grad with a bachelor's degree makes $52,200. Which means ifthe college grad lived at the same standard as the high school grad, he could pay off his student loans in two years and have cash to spare. Granted, most college grads are going to use a good portion of that extra income to upgrade their lifestyle instead of pay off low interest loans, but that's a personal choice.

Sources: College Costs - Average College Tuition Cost
Job Salary Earnings Comparison - College Degrees and High School Diploma

Maybe you could explain what I'm missing here.

The specific example used in the film were airline pilots. Moore interviewed several airline pilots who were paid so little that they had to use food stamps. One airplane pilot said that she would be in debt to about $1 million for her training but her salary would never match to pay it off. The movie also showed a portion of a Congressional hearing with testimony from airline pilot Capt. Chesley B "Sully" Sullenberger III, who did the "miracle landing on the Hudson River," talk about how his pay was cut 40% and his pension was now worthless. A Huffington Post article on that can be found here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/02/24/chesley-sully-sullenberge_0_n_169512.html

Here is another article about how those getting college degrees aren't getting jobs that require them. Granted, though, the article didn't specifically state that the jobs they were getting didn't pay them enough to pay off their student loans. The article is here: http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/red...-college-dont-always-translate-into-jobs.html

Here is another article about how a graduate at a for-profit college, the Art Institute of Ft. Lauderdale, had to resort to being a stripper after paying $70,000 for a degree that is worthless. The article is here: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/295688


Obviously if government is going to subcontract some of its duties, it is government's responsibility to make sure those duties are being fullfilled competently, ethically, and legally. Something like this seems to be mainly about a lack of oversight on private businesses that performing government duties. Of course, the cost of providing the necessary amount of oversight and quality conrol measures may mean its no longer cost efficient to subcontract these duties, but if that's the case the government can simply reassume those duties.

But one problem there is ensuring that the government is performing adequate oversight, instead of political officials doling out contracts in exchange for kickbacks.

Is there some type of method you prefer to provide adquate oversight of both government officials and the private companies that are given contracts?

I would've preferred to see neither bailed out. Banks should be responsible for taking on too many high risk loans just as individuals should be responsible for buying homes they can't afford.

Well, the reason why people buy homes they can't afford is because the lending businesses gave them easy credit, which I think artificially inflated the prices of homes, which led to the credit bubble. The government giving out mortgages to the poor for homes they couldn't afford did't help either.

One reform I proposed is to make a regulation that all housing companies are required to build a percentage of homes in such a way as to be affordable by the poor. For instance, if a housing company wanted to build a community with 100 homes affordable by the middle class, they'd have to build a community elsewhere of, say, 25 homes priced to allow the poor to get a mortgage on but that they could still make a profit off of. That way, the poor would always have housing affordable to them instead of that land being used only for housing for middle class homes that give housing companies a greater profit margin.
 
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samsmart

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But they don't pay less to the government. If they pay 15% to the government they pay 15% to the government regardless if the rich pay 50% or 30%. And regardless of whether or not the rich pay 50% or 30%, if the middle class goes from 30% to 15% they gain relief by keeping more of their money. I see what you're saying, but what you're saying doesn't compute in my head as having the outcome you're saying.

Not saying it IS wrong, god knows I'm not an economic master. I just don't understand it. I understand the notion of it putting more of the burden percentage wise on the middle class theoritically...but that doesn't change how much money they have in their pockets and thus how much money they need to borrow.

I see your point. I don't have a copy of the movie on me - I saw it on a movie channel. So I will either have to try to get a copy or let someone else who does have one clarify the point.

From what I remember, it had to do with Reagan cutting the income taxes and appointing Wall Street executives to government positions. This allowed them to pass laws and regulations favorable to the wealthy at the expense of the poor. The movie has more detail, such as this era also showed a marked increase in consumer debt, which helped lead to the housing bubble and credit crisis. I may also be misremembering this particular point.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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1) The reduction of the income tax rates on the wealthiest in the United States which puts too much of a tax burden on the middle class which causes them to fall into an exceedingly high level of consumer debt.

At least in the short term that we have experienced, I don't think that is true at all.
Maybe long term, the lack of revenue from the upper income groups, may need to be made up with higher taxes from middle income groups.

2) Fewer rights for employees and unionized labor as compared to other nations, and how this results in corruption by executives without workers to serve as an adequate check against executives in the running of the business.

Unions, in my opinion, have stolen the thunder of regular progress and have claimed it as their doing.
Largely the things that have been done for workers have come from both the worker and business, not from the union.

3) How the costs of training professionals for certain occupations exceeds the income earned from an average salary in that occupation, which forces too many Americans into too high of a level of debt.

The blame can't be laid on the steps of capitalism.
We have designed our education system with the government, using mandates and all sorts of other things, with the preconceived notion that more education for everyone = good jobs for everyone.

In a country full of Einsteins, Einstein has work on the garbage truck, has to clean office building and has to flip burgers.
I think we subsidize education way to much.

4) Corruption with regards to the privatization of government services, shown in the movie as the "Cash for Kids" scandal concerning juvenile detention centers.

There will always be individual scenarios, but it is true that when government and business partner up, corruption is likely to follow.
I think we should either, accept the losses and allow government to run something or totally privatize it, no middle ground.

For that is where the abuse comes from.

5) The unfairness of the government bailing out banks but not families whose homes are being foreclosed on.

Our entire economic system is based on bank solvency and liquidity.
As long as the Federal Reserve is the lender of last resort, it will always be this way.

Just remember, it used to not be like this.
 

samsmart

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The blame can't be laid on the steps of capitalism.
We have designed our education system with the government, using mandates and all sorts of other things, with the preconceived notion that more education for everyone = good jobs for everyone.

In a country full of Einsteins, Einstein has work on the garbage truck, has to clean office building and has to flip burgers.
I think we subsidize education way to much.

Do you think the income gap between those without college degrees and those with college degrees have an effect on this too? I mean the generations before us could expect to get a basic job that would cover their livelihood while having only a high school education. But nowadays only low-paying jobs will hire non-college graduates. So the best way to ensure getting any non-minimum wage job is to get a degree. But that doesn't guarantee that the job will pay enough to pay back the loans for that degree. Still, without a degree, the person will have very little chance of making any higher earnings.

I really hoped the way I worded that makes sense...
 

Harry Guerrilla

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Do you think the income gap between those without college degrees and those with college degrees have an effect on this too? I mean the generations before us could expect to get a basic job that would cover their livelihood while having only a high school education. But nowadays only low-paying jobs will hire non-college graduates. So the best way to ensure getting any non-minimum wage job is to get a degree. But that doesn't guarantee that the job will pay enough to pay back the loans for that degree. Still, without a degree, the person will have very little chance of making any higher earnings.

I really hoped the way I worded that makes sense...

I fully understand it.
I do think that is the case, it's creating a large divide in my opinion.

There are two things at play here.
First, technological progression, where less people are required to do things.

Second, the specialization requirement for those fewer jobs.

To me, it seems like this will only get worse as time goes on, because of that.
 

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I think it is interesting that many "rightists" are concerned about how many people don't pay a net income tax because I think that many conservative politicians favor more people not paying as of an income tax so that money can instead be paid to private businesses that those conservative politicians tend to advocate.

I am not against a minimum income tax of some form. Especially if instead of paying money to the government a person can instead pay it through some kind of service on behalf of the government at the rate of the minimum wage. That way, those who don't want to or can't pay into it can instead pay into it through their labor.

Also, would you be opposed to having additional brackets on the high end of the progressive tax scale, so that someone who earns $10 million pays a higher rate than those who earn $1 million?

Interesting idea of allowing people to pay off their tax through some kind of service to the government. I'd be OK with that as long as it didn't cut so deeply into revenue that the government was forced to choose between cutting essential services and raising taxes to make up the shortfall. Though I do doubt THAT many people would pick that option if it was at the minimum wage rate.

I'm not opposed to creating another bracket or two for the uber rich, but I start to get leary of any tax rate on income above 40 or 45%. At some point you start disincentivizing people from making more money or at a minimum start to really encouraging folks to break the law by hiding income.

The way the film says that unionized workers help stem corruption in a business is because they get a say in how the business is run. There's much more bargaining between the workers and the executives, and because of that there are fewer abuses of workers by executives and management. The film also goes so far to state that the business operates better because of it.

I also understand the predicament that union pensions established corporations put on them when they compete against newer businesses who are not burdened nearly as much by pensions. That kind of thing is bad for everybody - the business, the pensioners, and the workers.

The thing is I don't know what could be done about that. Off the top of my head, I would say regulate pensions so that every business in a certain industry must pay the same amount of money into a pension per worker, so that every company, no matter how new or old they pay the same amount per worker. But that would take away the bargaining power of the union and give it to the government, and would have to implemented on the state level.

Do you think that instead of using unions America would be better suited to use guilds instead? A guild could set minimum standards of pay and working conditions for people in certain fields without taking away individual bargaining power. After all, look how well the Screenwriter's Guild of America did when it went on strike to secure minimum standards for their group without unionizing. Do you think guilds could be a good way for American workers and professionals to secure minimum pay rates and working standards without giving power to unions?

Not at all crazy about the idea of the government regulating pensions like that at all. First off, it provides a significant barrier to entering unionized industries. Plus I want to see benefits, including pensions, be elastic and subject to market forces and government regulations are about as inelastic as they come.

As to the idea of guilds replacing unions, I honestly have no idea how guilds function and what sort of differences there are between them and unions.

The specific example used in the film were airline pilots. Moore interviewed several airline pilots who were paid so little that they had to use food stamps. One airplane pilot said that she would be in debt to about $1 million for her training but her salary would never match to pay it off. The movie also showed a portion of a Congressional hearing with testimony from airline pilot Capt. Chesley B "Sully" Sullenberger III, who did the "miracle landing on the Hudson River," talk about how his pay was cut 40% and his pension was now worthless. A Huffington Post article on that can be found here: Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger To Congress: My Pay Has Been Cut 40 Percent In Recent Years, Pension Terminated

Here is another article about how those getting college degrees aren't getting jobs that require them. Granted, though, the article didn't specifically state that the jobs they were getting didn't pay them enough to pay off their student loans. The article is here: Career detour: Graduates say lessons learned in college don't always translate into jobs - RedEye

Here is another article about how a graduate at a for-profit college, the Art Institute of Ft. Lauderdale, had to resort to being a stripper after paying $70,000 for a degree that is worthless. The article is here: Stripper says for-profit college degree

Let me just address these specific examples. The airline industry was hit hard after 9/11 and many companies went into bankruptcy. And before they could fully recover from that, they now face a recession and travel is an easy area for both businesses and individual to cut back on. Essentially you have an industry that's been whacked around like pinata, so its not surprising to salaries and/or benefits have been cut and jobs are hard to find.

The second article said that basically new graduates are having trouble finding jobs that utilize their degrees. Given the current economic climate, that's not surprising. Companies aren't expanding their workforces right now, so its awful hard to get your foot in the door when all the doors are closed. But I see this as a sign of the economic times, rather than a systematic shortcoming that needs to be addressed. As the economy improves, it will be easier for grads to put those shiny new degrees to use.

The third article, as soon as I saw the name of the school (Art Institute of Ft. Lauderdale) I asked myself "What is her degree in?" Turns out, its in video game design. My brother works in college recruitment/admissions for a for-profit college and he's told me that video game design is essentially the "for morons" program. It's very popular and there are way more people enrolled in those programs than there are available jobs. The video game industry isn't that big of an industry really.

So of the examples you gave, it seems the problems are more related to specific industries that have been battered, the general economic climate, and getting degrees that are difficult to translate into related employment. I see no systematic issues that need to be addressed.

But one problem there is ensuring that the government is performing adequate oversight, instead of political officials doling out contracts in exchange for kickbacks.

Is there some type of method you prefer to provide adquate oversight of both government officials and the private companies that are given contracts?

I haven't put a lot of thought into it, but I think some sort of independent agency, completely seperate from agency or department using the subcontractors, to perform spot checks, investigations, quality assurance. Imagine an internal affairs department that wasn't a part of the police department structure, but instead answered directly to the mayor. Or some other official or department no tied to the police.

Well, the reason why people buy homes they can't afford is because the lending businesses gave them easy credit, which I think artificially inflated the prices of homes, which led to the credit bubble. The government giving out mortgages to the poor for homes they couldn't afford did't help either.

One reform I proposed is to make a regulation that all housing companies are required to build a percentage of homes in such a way as to be affordable by the poor. For instance, if a housing company wanted to build a community with 100 homes affordable by the middle class, they'd have to build a community elsewhere of, say, 25 homes priced to allow the poor to get a mortgage on but that they could still make a profit off of. That way, the poor would always have housing affordable to them instead of that land being used only for housing for middle class homes that give housing companies a greater profit margin.

I blame the banks for giving too much easy credit to high risk individuals. But at the same sense, no one put a gun to their head and forced them to take on a loan they couldn't afford to pay. Both parties are to blame for helping create the housing bubble. And as you said, the government was also involved in creating that mess.

I'm not sure we should be encouraging home ownership for the poor. Yes, its the American Dream, but is it good policy? A recent study claims that areas with higher homeownership rates also suffer from higher unemployment rates. Owning a home ties you down and you're not able to easily move to where new jobs might be available.

Why home ownership causes unemployment. - By Tim Harford - Slate Magazine

Here's the excerpt that specifically talks about the study, which towards the bottom of the article:

Even when we look only at internal migration, the barriers are formidable. Wherever people seem particularly keen to own their own homes—as in the United Kingdom, Spain, and some U.S. states—employment suffers as a result. English economist Andrew Oswald has shown that across European countries, and across U.S. states, high levels of home ownership are correlated with high levels of unemployment. More conventional factors such as generous welfare benefits or high levels of unionization don't explain unemployment nearly as well as the tendency to own houses. Renting your home and staying flexible do wonders for your chances of always finding an interesting job to do.
 
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