Spokesmen for the banking lobby expect the world to stop spinning if bankruptcy judges gain the right to modify home mortgages. They construct a parade of horribles if a contract between a lender and a borrower is altered.
What they don’t explain is why this very same power to modify mortgages has not crushed the market for rental property, second homes, and commercial buildings. A bankruptcy plan can, today and for decades past, change the terms of a loan on any of those kinds of property. Last I looked, the world was still turning.
The prohibition on altering the terms of a home loan is a 1984 addition to the bankruptcy law enacted in 1978. It is a special carve out for the home lending industry. Congress was told that it was necessary to promote home ownership. Perhaps a change is necessary to preserve home ownership.
My veterinarian father used to say that a goose is so stupid that it wakes up in a brand new world every morning. He probably didn’t know any lobbyists.