Apparently, the housing crisis has spawned a new word, robo-signing, to describe the phenomenon of people signing documents without reading them.

I’ll let you in on a little secret, not everyone reads every single word of every document that they sign. Oh, you already knew that? In the comments of that article one person explains how at their closing they did read every word of every document before they signed. It took four hours, but the title company had scheduled more closings in the same room every half hour so there were people stacked up in the hall waiting for the room.

I’m shocked, SHOCKED! that not everyone takes four hours for a closing. After all, reading every single word of every single document before signing anything is what every good and responsible person always does, isn’t it? Well, that’s what libertarians say. Contracts should be absolute. You’d better read every word because if you sign something then you agree to it even if it wasn’t what you thought you were agreeing to.

Does it bother the libertarians at all that the vast majority of human beings don’t behave the way they think everyone should behave?

A mortgage company shouldn’t be allowed to dump a mountain of paperwork in your lap and then later use something against you that was written in the small print on page 247. Instead, we should design a society where people just get treated fairly without expecting them to posess a superhuman ability to defend themselves against getting taken advantage of.

2 thoughts on “Robo-signing

  1. You can bet I read every word of the documents when I bought a house. We’re talking about a $120,000 purchase. You wouldn’t spend four hours to cover your ass when putting it on the line to tune of $120,000???

  2. But the vast majority of people don’t. My main point is that Libertarians say socialism can’t work because it ignores human nature, and then they have a model for how normal people are “supposed” to behave that doesn’t reflect the way the vast majority of people actually behave.

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