Dreaming of home ownership

April 21, 2010
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This post was written by IL reporter Rebecca Berfanger

Minutes after I turned in Tuesday's IL Daily story about a new initiative by the Indiana Supreme Court and the Indiana Foreclosure Prevention Network, I got an e-mail from the Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership about 'Reclaiming the American Dream,' a documentary set to air on the Indianapolis PBS affiliate WFYI at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

The documentary will include national and local experts' opinions on mortgage foreclosures, how the ideal of owning a home has changed over the years, and will also follow people in Indianapolis and Detroit as they strive to achieve the American dream of homeownership.

Lilly Endowment Inc. funded the project, which is a partnership between WFYI and INHP. The documentary was produced by filmmaker Kim Hood Jacobs.

Not having seen the documentary, I plan to tune in Thursday night. I'm hoping it'll include some glint of happy news, as I've been following mortgage foreclosures for Indiana Lawyer for a while now ' including how other news sources have been covering it ' and most of the news so far has been grim.

Even when I hear news reports explaining foreclosure numbers are decreasing slightly, or at least compared to the same time a year ago, I immediately start to wonder whether those numbers really mean anything as I continue to hear of friends of friends and relatives who have lost their homes in recent months. In working on a story for the April 28 edition, I'm also learning that Indiana's numbers are staying strong or slightly increasing ' and that Indiana is 11th in the country for foreclosures.

I also look forward to the documentary for personal reasons; last summer, I was able to buy my first house with the help of INHP's staff and free community programs. Like others who work with them, the organization will look over financial statements and credit reports, and will give potential homeowners different loan options if INHP thinks a potential buyer is qualified. And if they're not a good candidate for a loan, INHP offers classes and other resources to help people learn what they can do to become more financially stable and raise their credit scores.

So will you watch? Do you think we'll eventually see a decrease in foreclosures in Indiana any time soon?

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  • It\'s a complicated issue and I would guess we all know someone in that mess for the right and wrong reasons. Did someone buy a home that was out of their league and unrealistic about their ability to pay. I\'m not talking about the uninformed; I\'m thinking about those living a fake lifestyle on borrowed money. I will try to tape the documentary and see if sheds any light on the matter.

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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