Answering David Cay Johnston

Felix Salmon and Ryan Avent answer his questions.

The answers both convince me that there really is an urgent need to “do something” and also an urgent need to try to make sure we do the right thing. Middle class people are pretty desperately in need of some form of bulk modification of mortgages, a step the financial institutions and their hirelings in the GOP have been blocking for months. In theory, this question is separable from the bailout issue. In practice, the banks’ desire for a bailout provides a key moment leverage and opportunity.