Mortgage-backed securities made the news frequently in the first part of the recession when the housing bubble burst. A mortgage-backed security is basically an investment in the loans that are given to mortgage holders and entitles the investor to a share of the profits from that loan. This type of security was seen as a very safe and smart investment until loan qualification standards were relaxed and many people were able to obtain mortgages that they were unable to pay back.
The Rails to Trails program has been a popular program nationwide. Many communities enjoy the conversion of unused rail road tracks into walking and biking trails. However, few people are aware that much of the land used for those trails was privately owned before the government decided to turn it into trails.