Individual responsibility and the credit crunch

To the editor:

The government should not “bail out” those borrowers who may be facing foreclosure. Those borrowers who are facing foreclosure are primarily those who purchased homes with little or nothing down — many of whom had credit problems and used subprime lenders to finance their purchase.

In reality, they do not have a problem; they have no equity to lose. If they had equity in their homes, they could refinance or sell their properties.

It is the lenders who have a problem. The worst-case scenario for a lender is to have to foreclose on a property. The property seldom has any equity — and if it does have equity, an independent bidder usually ends up with the property at foreclosure, not the lender.

The market is already adjusting to the problems caused by the “easy” financing that has been so readily available. Investors are no longer eager to fund subprime loans, and most subprime lenders have greatly tightened lending requirements or have left the market altogether. Both the lenders and borrowers entered into a business decision that they thought would benefit them. Neither acted as cautiously as they should have.

I don’t believe the lenders should be bailed out, and I don’t believe the borrowers should be bailed out. The government should not punish those who have acted in a responsible manner so they can reward those who have acted irresponsibly. Nobody wants to see anybody lose their home or lose money, but ultimately people have to be responsible for their own actions.



Energy needs

To the editor:

Gov. Jim Gibbons has pledged to do something about global warming. However, fast-tracking applications for coal-fired power was not what Nevadans had in mind.

The Nevada State Environmental Commission has essentially allowed the coal-burners not to adhere to any carbon dioxide limits (Review-Journal, Saturday). Apparently, the commission didn’t actually have the authority to say “no.” (Kind of like Gov. Gibbons’ global warming team.) They merely wrote a “memorandum” that they want carbon sequestration — when it becomes feasible.

It is extremely unlikely that feasible carbon sequestration will ever be developed. Consider the two coal-burners planned for White Pine County, which will (over 50 years) emit more than 2 billion tons of carbon dioxide. Evenly distributed at one atmospheric pressure, that would fill a square box six miles a side.

Yes, they would pressurize the carbon dioxide. But that takes a lot of energy. And then there’s drilling the holes. The carbon dioxide would have to be buried deep to keep it from leaking out. This all means piles of money. And they already aren’t willing to spend an extra 20 percent on cleaner plants.

The sites dedicated to carbon sequestration are just empty lots. I doubt the coal polluters even checked the geology.

Would they pay for a pipeline to export the carbon dioxide if they had to? No. But they’d try to get taxpayers to pay for it. So be ready to fork out a few more billion in coal subsidies.

Rick Spilsbury


Lawyer talk

To the editor:

Glen Lerner’s refusal to submit to the new lawyer advertising rules seems silly (Review-Journal, Monday). His remark that, “I am not going to turn my ads over to my competitor,” is something that I would expect from a new marketer, not a seasoned advertiser like Mr. Lerner.

Certainly he knows that any of his competition could pull market reports in order to gauge competitive spending, advertising schedules and the like. It is not like the “competitor” couldn’t view Mr. Lerner’s content on any of the stations, on billboards or in the telephone book. What is the secret here?

The new attorney advertising rules don’t care if Mr. Lerner wants to smash up a luxury car or pop out of a bottle. As a layperson, it seems that the rules seek only to ensure that the viewing public is receiving all of the information it needs. For instance, I think it is important to know that if I file a personal injury lawsuit, I could be held responsible for the opposing party’s attorneys fees and costs. This is required under the new rules.

I think it is important that I know that a reduced attorney’s fee or contingency fee may only apply for a short period of time, not for the entirety of my case. This is also required under the new rules.

Given that the review committee lacks the power to do anything other than make a recommendation, Mr. Lerner’s response seems to be much ado about nothing.



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