During his platitudinously populist inaugural address today, the 45th President of the United States said this to the rather thin crowd of people gathered on the National Mall:
For too long, a small group in our nation's Capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Washington flourished -- but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered -- but the jobs left, and the factories closed.
The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country. Their victories have not been your victories; their triumphs have not been your triumphs; and while they celebrated in our nation's capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.
That all changes -- starting right here, and right now, because this moment is your moment: it belongs to you.
It belongs to everyone gathered here today and everyone watching all across America. This is your day. This is your celebration. And this, the United States of America, is your country.
It was a vanilla-clear message of anti-fat cat, anti-big government, anti-elite thinking that somehow managed to be simultaneously free of policy or ideas. But what Donald Trump really communicated was that he wanted his true base - the blue collar folk who feel left out of Obama's global America - to know that he would be acting on their behalf, creating a playing field on which they can rise up and prosper.
So it was a bit odd to see that less than two hours later - while the new president dined in the Capitol rotunda with Congressional leadership and mega-donor Sheldon Adelson - the Trump Administration released a rather curious executive order:
The Trump administration overturned a mortgage-fee cut under a government program that’s popular with first-time home buyers and low-income borrowers.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development on Friday said the agency is canceling a reduction announced last week while President Barack Obama was still in office. The Federal Housing Administration had planned to cut its annual fee for most borrowers by a quarter of a percentage point to 0.60 percent, effective on Jan. 27.
Doctrinaire Republicans have never liked the notion of rate reductions but Trump is the least doctrinaire President EVER and the idea of raising the barrier to entry for homeowners to enter the market, and to do so in the midst of a rising rate environment that he claims to support, is pretty back asswards for the guy who wants to return America to Angry Joe American.
The cut would have reduced the annual premium for someone borrowing $200,000 by $500 in the first year. Some housing industry groups lauded the change, saying it could increase home buying by offsetting recent rises in mortgage rates.
Stock in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac plummeted bringing a real smile to the face of John Paulson and his maybe investor, incoming Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.