Nicholas D. Kristof writes in the NYT:
One memory particularly troubles Theckston. He says that some account executives earned a commission seven times higher from subprime loans, rather than prime mortgages. So they looked for less savvy borrowers — those with less education, without previous mortgage experience, or without fluent English — and nudged them toward subprime loans.
These less savvy borrowers were disproportionately blacks and Latinos, he said, and they ended up paying a higher rate so that they were more likely to lose their homes. Senior executives seemed aware of this racial mismatch, he recalled, and frantically tried to cover it up.
Theckston, who has a shelf full of awards that he won from Chase, such as “sales manager of the year,” showed me his 2006 performance review. It indicates that 60 percent of his evaluation depended on him increasing high-risk loans.
Way back in 2000, I wrote a 5-part series for VDARE on How to Help the Left Half of the Bell Curve. In it, I protested: "America's growing IQ stratification, and the resulting class war that the clever are waging upon the clueless, is one of the great unmentionables."
The subsequent subprime disaster exemplified this. The conventional wisdom on increasing minority homeownership, as promoted by Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Henry Cisneros, and Angelo Mozilo, was that mortgage lenders who followed traditional credit standards were stupid racists who were overlooking lots of blacks and Hispanics who were smart enough to make enough money to pay off their mortgages even if they put down a tiny or nonexistent down payment and didn't quite have all their documents. (Hey, they're undocumented! Don't be prejudiced against the undocumented for not having documents proving that that they make six figures picking strawberries.)
What happened instead, of course, was that sharp pencil guys, in the name of fighting racist redlining, pushed people who weren't good with numbers and weren't good at coolly assessing the long term implications of financial decisions, people who were disproportionately blacks and Hispanics, into complicated loans that just raped them, and ended up raping the country.
This is much like the long-running debate in the middle of the last decade between Malcolm Gladwell v. Judge Richard Posner and myself. Gladwell, the herald of multi-culti capitalism, defended the ethics of car salesmen against the scoffing of Posner and myself. I think the definitive word belongs to an outstanding 2001 article in Edmunds by Chandler Phillips called Confessions of a Car Salesman, in which Edmunds car magazine hired a journalist to work at two L.A. area new car dealerships:
"My manager had, at one point, described the different races and nationalities and what they were like as customers. It would be too inflammatory to repeat what he said here. But the gist of it was that the people of such-and-such nationality were "lie downs" (people who buy without negotiating), while the people of another race were "roaches" (they had bad credit), and people from that country were "mooches" (they tried to buy the car for invoice price).
"I'll repeat what Michael, my ASM, told me about Caucasians. He said white people never come into the dealership. 'They're all on the Internet trying to find out what our invoice price is. We never even get a shot at them. I hate it. I mean, would they go (to a mall) and say, "What's your invoice price on that beautiful suit?" No. So why are they doing it here?'"
Awhile ago, I went into a certain dealership on Van Nuys Blvd. that sells a prominent brand of Japanese cars to mostly Latino customers.
That place struck me as an abode of evil, from the ridiculously lavish atrium lobby with huge trees indoors, to the high pressure sales tactics, which are designed to trigger Mexican males' insecurities about their machismo. Aren't they man enough to buy this absurdly overloaded car at a monthly payment that, if you do the numbers (but nobody does), turns out to include a 21% interest rate? What kind of maricon are you who can't show the salesman you can afford what he's offering? I brought my son along and, rather than walk out, we sat through an hour of unbelievably hostile sales tactics as a lesson to him.
And that explains a lot about the motivations behind the businesses in the immigration lobby: more uneducated, innumerate, insecure Mexicans are more fresh meat for their salesmen. They can't rip off educated white people who subscribe to Consumer Reporters and use the Zag system reserved for CR subscribers, so they want to bring in millions of new people they can outsmart and cheat.