A year later, reality sets in on housing fixes
The new president climbed aboard Air Force One a year ago for a trip to Phoenix to reveal his strategy for attacking the housing crisis. It was a signal moment in the buoyant early days of Barack Obama's administration. The plan, Obama told a cheering audience, would keep as many as 9 million people in their homes by lowering their monthly mortgage payments. The program wouldn't save every home, Obama cautioned, but few people paid attention. Not with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner saying things like, "You'll start to see the effects quite quickly." Ambition, though, got far ahead of reality. The numbers show a program that is failing to deliver, at least at this point.