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Ethanol, Mortgages and General Motors

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Ethanol, Mortgages and General Motors

Efforts to subsidize ethanol production as a remedy to global warming hit resistance.

The mortgage industry struggles to improve disclosure guarantees.

Legal observers critique the restructuring plan for General Motors as unfair to bondholders.

For more news, listen to the LibertyWeek podcast here.

1. ENVIRONMENT 

Efforts to subsidize ethanol production as a remedy to global warming hit resistance.

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Senior Fellow Marlo Lewis on why ethanol doesn’t necessarily mean a reduction in carbon emissions

“EPA argues in its proposed rule to implement the renewable fuel standard program established by the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA), that expanding corn production into forest and grass lands can release substantial amounts of carbon stored in soils and trees. Similarly, when U.S. farmers grow corn in areas previously used to produce soy beans, for example, farmers in Brazil have an incentive to convert forest land into soy plantations. As you might expect, EPA’s use of life-cycle analysis, although required by EISA, drives the ethanol lobby and its congressional allies up the wall.” 

 

2. FINANCE

The mortgage industry struggles to improve disclosure guarantees.

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Special Projects Counsel Hans Bader on the write-off mania in the mortgage business: 

“It’s not just lenders who are getting federal payments for writing off loans, but also companies that service loans without owning them. The servicers now have a financial incentive to write off other institutions’ loans to potential deadbeats, at the expense of whoever actually owns the loan — which probably includes some of the companies your 401(k) mutual funds invested in. Essentially, it’s a bounty on your 401(k).”

 

3. BUSINESS

Legal observers critique the restructuring plan for General Motors as unfair to bondholders.

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Senior Fellow Iain Murray on the politics behind the GM deal

“President Obama’s takeover of General Motors is a disaster in the making. Not only is it bad for GM, it also sets terrible legal precedents and rewards the president’s political allies in a brazen display of political patronage. Taken as a whole, the so-called rescue belies the president’s promise to end politics as usual and undermines the values of the free-enterprise system that has fueled American prosperity.” 

 

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