Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Dear NPR

Dear NPR,

I usually think of you as a serious news source. Even The Don was listening to you for balance before he died, and you know he also loved Fox News. Sure, I wish Frank Deford would freaking SHUT UP AND RETIRE PLEASE and I generally feel like punching the Youth Radio commentators for their teenage navel-gazing and the "This I Believe" contributors for pretension, but I respect your reporting.

I'm sorry, perhaps it's just me angsting about my financial future but I am a bit confused by the story I heard yesterday on Morning Edition, "Housing Dream Backfires For Immigrant." Let me get this straight-- an immigrant who earned his pharmacy degree from Howard in the early 90's, so he's not fresh off the boat by any means, commits mortgage fraud and he's somehow an example of how the American Dream has been dashed by the financial collapse? Are you nuts? Or are you being ironic? Were you just intent on profiling the first person you found and hoping we didn't notice that he's been up to shady get rich quick schemes? If you're intending a subtle critique within your objectivity, you failed--it comes off as slapdash and poorly thought out.

To say I'm disappointed in your reporting is an understatement.

Guys, you want someone to profile as someone who has been hurt by this insanity but didn't fuel it? Profile me. Details upon request, but I promise you I didn't buy multiple houses to use as an ATM. My house is for sale, at less than what I bought it for, and according to my real estate person, there's just no buyers. It's an old, modest house in a nice neighborhood, within walking distance of restaurants, bars, the hospital, the library, churches and the grocery and other shops. It's on a major bus line. There's hundreds like it in a decaying metro area that's losing jobs every day but was improving until predatory lenders and scammers hit town.

For heaven's sake, stop trying to paint criminals as innocent. Actually press them on the details of the lying they did to get those miracle loans, be journalists not sympathizers and report instead of letting lies stand.



1 comment:

drwende said...


Yes, the emphasis on the woes of criminals, varied by the occasional fool, makes me crazy and (I think) trivializes the crisis.

I don't care how miserable my former SF friend the Last Fool is with his overpriced rental property. I care about the neighbors who just wanted to live in that cul-de-sac and whose neighborhood and selling prospects have been ruined by the greed of people like him. (That's assuming there are any -- half the houses were bought by absentee landlords and flippers.)