Senate leaders of both parties are hammering out a deal to pass a “foreclosure relief” bill that would apparently contain a mortgage bailout for certain borrowers who borrowed so much (and made such small downpayments) that their mortgages currently exceed the value of their homes. The public opposes mortgage bailouts, and they are a bad idea that turns Aesop’s fable on its head and discourages investment. But Senators want to be “bipartisan,” a desire based on herd instinct that often yields bad results. The deal will apparently include federal money for “mortgage counselers,” as if “counseling” could somehow undo the effects of financial irresponsibility or fraud. Federal spending on mortgage “counseling” is often a boondoggle that enriches left-wing lobbying groups.