JONATHAN CHAIT OCTOBER 15, 2010
The late Wall Street Journal editorial editor and Medal of Freedom winner Robert Bartley had a saying to describe the ethos of his page: "The ideology finds the news." Of course, the ideology is also capable of fleeing from the news:
"WE'RE NOT AWARE of a single case so far of a substantive error," The Journal's editorial said. "Out of tens of thousands of potentially affected borrowers, we're still waiting for the first victim claiming that he was current on his mortgage when the bank seized the home." The fund manager Barry Ritholtz, who writes the blog The Big Picture, and Naked Capitalism's Yves Smith, whose chronicle of the foreclosure jumble has been encyclopedic, furious and convincing, would disagree. They've linked to stories in papers like the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and The South Florida Sun Sentinel about banks mistakenly taking over homes that hadn't been foreclosed on. Not only was Fort Lauderdale's Jason Grodensky not late on the payments on the house that Bank of American foreclosed on, but he didn't even have a mortgage.
"Thanks for the query," The Journal's editorial page editor said, responding to an interview request, "but I think I'll let the editorial speak for itself."