The DC Examiner:
The root cause of the present crisis is the federal government’s insistence beginning with passage of the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act that private sector lenders loosen their credit rules in order to give mortgages to buyers who could not repay them. Then in the 1990s and thereafter, an ill-advised government policy was transformed into a financial toxin as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac used their status as government-backed corporations to backstop millions of such sub-prime loans and to encourage their packaging in mortgage-backed securities as investment tools. Wall Street knew better than to build on such an economic house-of-cards, but did it anyway. The bottom-line remains that well-intentioned but ill-advised government policies are at the heart of the immediate economic crisis.