Washington Post: U.S. investigating possible criminal violations in foreclosure crisis

Breaking News Alert: U.S. investigating possible criminal violations in foreclosure crisis
October 19, 2010 2:53:09 PM
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Federal law enforcement officials are examining whether financial firms may have broken the law when they filed improper foreclosure documents with courts, sources familiar with the probe say.

Task force probing whether banks broke federal laws during home seizures

Gallery
During the housing boom, millions of homeowners got easy access to mortgages. Now, some mortgage lenders and government officials are taking action after discovering that many mortgage documents were mishandled.

Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, October 19, 2010; 4:28 PM

Federal law enforcement officials are investigating possible criminal violations in connection with the national foreclosure crisis, examining whether financial firms broke federal laws when they filed fraudulent court documents to seize people’s homes, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Obama administration’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force is in the early stages of an investigation into whether banks and other companies that submitted flawed paperwork in state foreclosure proceedings may also have misled federal housing agencies, which now own or insure a majority of home loans, according to these sources.

The task force, which includes investigators from the Justice Department, Department of Housing and Urban Development and other agencies, is also looking into whether the submission of flawed paperwork during the foreclosure process violated mail or wire fraud laws. Financial fraud cases often involve these statutes.

The probe is unfolding as the administration seeks to send a public message that banks or other companies that broke the law would be held accountable. After freezing foreclosures in many states amid reports of improper foreclosures, banks are now preparing to submit new paperwork and resume the process of seizing homes. Members of the task force and other administration officials are set to hold a wide-ranging meeting Wednesday to discuss the issue at HUD. That will be followed by a White House briefing by HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan and the task force executive director, Robb Adkins, an administration official said.

“As institutions are determining their next steps in addressing these issues, we remain committed to holding accountable any bank that has violated the law,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said in a statement Tuesday. “The administration’s Federal Housing Administration and Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force have undertaken their own regulatory and enforcement investigation into the foreclosure process.”

Gibbs also said the administration is strongly supporting a parallel probe by every state’s attorney general. Foreclosure law is largely the domain of state courts.

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But the federal government also has a lot of money at stake. The Federal Housing Administration and Ginnie Mae, in addition to federally backed mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, insure home loans. When lenders suffer losses on these loans as homes fall into foreclosure, the government reimburses them.

But if lenders or other mortgage companies have been reimbursed based on false or inaccurate paperwork, the government could seek both civil and criminal penalties, people familiar with the matter said.

No specific target of the investigation has been identified.

15 Responses

  1. Are we finally going to see some big bank heads roll? I will believe that when I see it. The fraud is so big that it probably goes all the way down to the mail guy. Big bank regulation must come out of this, or they will do it again–trust me!

  2. @UsedCarGuy,
    How I’ve done this…..work with smaller, local media and work up the chain. Starting with ABC news, you are going to get shot down. Try a local reporter, hungry for a story. If he opts to write it, other media in your area will pick it up through the wire.

    Keep at it and don’t take “no” for an answer. Keep going.

  3. Larry, don’t give up, but don’t plan on selling your house any time soon. All those agencies you listed can’t sit on this for much longer. I, too, have a list as long as yours, but the backlash is starting.

    Frank E Lee, just got a reply to my scathing e-mail from my AG. “Don’t confuse a lack of publicity as a lack of action on our part”, was her reply. I think they are starting to get it. I just told ABC News I would go public with Brian Ross if they want to see my “smoking gun” of a transaction, that starts with Wells Fargo and goes to Goldman Sachs. Let’s see if they call……..

  4. I am going to boycott any bank that would foreclose my neighbor’s home.

  5. i dont think any one in any agency cares, i have sent most of my documents to just about ever tom dick and harry government, and private sector i can think of over 1,500 pages, and most by certified mail, i dont think, i know and i think ever other agency also knows that my paper work is out and out fraud, i am not in forclosure, and i am not up side down on my note, however i cannot seem to be able to find out who the lender on my mortgage is, one title search shows one lender, the other two title searchs show different lenders, and the deed of trust shows a different lender. no document that is in the documents that i signed for the mortgage has a correct legal description, no one knows what my payoff is, and no one knows who and where the person who is listed on the deed of trust is, and none of the agencies i have spoke to and wrote to seem to care and this includes two us senators, from missouri, two congress people from missouri, the bbb in missouri, texas and ca. the ftc, the fbi, the us department of justice, the federal consumer protection department, the mortgage banking assoc. the missouri aty. general, and the us attorney out of k.c. mo. i have hired 5 different law firms, and none of them has done any thing except take money, and ask for additional funds to do more of the nothing. I do not know much about legal or financial matters, so all i can do is hope some day some one will have the answers i need to sell my home and get get a clear title. lwalker1230@peoplepc.com

  6. AIM, “Action in Motion” I believe that it boils down to all out war, and Treason! Treason by the People in High Places that should be brought down. I have STEPPED OUT and I want participation, We are all going Down,
    sort of like the “Titanic” I don’t know how far, but You can help your self, by helping others, that my friends is the “American Way”. Get involved at home, school, drive around your Town,This mess has no Boundary’s? Atlanta, Georgia is my home and I am a proud “American”, Our Color’s don’t run.

    a non random thought

  7. When Can I publish the Names from the law firm, who filed a Disclosure with (not my signature and a not my loan or closing date) that involved my “case”? You see the boy’s from the hood work in big building’s! I mean Three Piece Stripe suit’s, They filed the last of there papers, Motions, etc, etc. with (a possible) forged,and fake Document, hell I can do that! Their stench fill’s the air. The Honorable Court System, has been defiled, I don’t think the Federal Judge’s or the Clerks like it when they behave like that.in Atlanta, Georgia.
    United States District Court. “Say it’s not so”
    “This is an opinion only” I can prove it! As a matter of fact I do want to do that ASAP. Seek council, Pray to your higher power and “Remember who you are”.

  8. Whaddya bet Holder finds an enormous rug to sweep this under?

  9. Listen people, if ever there was a time to call, write, fax or email, it’s now. I begged everyone here last week to write their AG’s a letter demanding sentences, not modifications, and no one responded. WE ARE ABOUT TO BE RAILROADED!

    From Politico:

    “Behind the scenes, Republicans are consulting with the banks, which are hoping to reach a quick settlement with attorneys general from all 50 states who have announced a joint investigation into home foreclosures. The settlement would involve a sizable fine and some basic reforms to the foreclosure process.”

    How nice….the banks will pay a sizable fine that….uhmm, they pay from the 0% money they get from the fed, who gets it from YOU AND I at 0%. And then we’ll get basic fraud reforms. Like, how inspecting a false affidavit for much longer this time is proof positive that the deadbeat needs evicting.

    Like, still not showing legal standing, simply because they can’t, but since they paid a sizable fine and such, they are more than likely owed $$$ by most of us.

    People WAKE UP! They are taking our country! This is WAR, and I mean that in every real sense. They’ve captured our government, they’ve captured our judiciary, they own the media, they’ve stripped our equity down to the bone, and now they’ll finish of this cluster**** by taking the rest of our homes, only now with the complete assurance from our government that it’s all perfectly legal, they paid the fine.

    And we thought Saddam and Bin Laden were threats!

  10. HOW ABOUT THE BUILDER LENDERS WHO ORIGINATED AND TABLE FUNDED THEIR 5% FEES AND THEN SOLD THE SERVICING AND NOTE–UNDISCLOSED YIELD SPREAD PREMIUMS. THEY WERE THE UNDERWRITER, ESROW, TITLE, INSURANCE, ALL BUT THE APPRAISER–WHO THEY OWNED——-$500.00 PER APPRAISER AND HUNDREDS OF THEM. THIS IS THE ACCURATE PROBLEM WRITTEN BY LUINA.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/26461646/Cruel-Hope-the-stories-of-predatory-lending-lennar-universal-american-mortgage-company

  11. THE BEST THING FOR “AMERICAN’S”
    NO MORE PLAYING
    STOP PAYING AND THEY WILL LISTEN
    THEY DUG THEIR OWN HOLE
    “COBB COUNTY RAISED MY TAXES” 15% THIS YEAR
    The lady at the county Tax Office was none to shore “what to think of me” when I told her that I would pay the 12.00 “frn’s” per day as this moves forward, I did not escrow nothing zero, now 12/day for taxes plus 5% and 1% interest, I thought what a deal. I have paid a down payment and then the “Insurance Guy”, well he has been out 3 times this week alone, (I called his office from “gmail” after midnight) to remind to come into the back driveway. Last week I pulled my “COMPANY” van and blocked the front entrance, to all. Insurance down to 1200.00 “frn’s” per year from “The inflated Bull Shit”
    New bill from State Farm for this year 2900.00? “WTF”
    I would not have that again, because I had paid inflated Property insurance Since 2006 rolled around!
    you got to get it in your head this is War-With out bullet’s
    This time it is over Fake money, Lies, TOXIC, COLD,CRUEL, and CALCULATED, Crimes,Trust me my marriage suffered the the same fate, and build up of greed right along the same chart’s you see in the “PRINT” what ever form of information you are blasted with. it’s all lies and they know they are F$$K$D and they know that we know.
    Time to take control
    AA, Atlanta.
    Just a thought, I am not promoting violence, I am not giving advice! Consult legal advice,
    (An Attorney With Noble CHARACTER)
    please come forward…………..

  12. Only the beginning – only the beginning.

  13. I would appreciate comments on a problem I’ve uncovered in my loan docs. This is from Karl Denninger today:

    “It appears as though many loans and other mortgage-related assets have been double and even triple-pledged to various constituencies. There’s only one profession where that takes place on a routine basis and doesn’t involve ripping someone off – prostitution – where you can sell something and still have it. In banking and finance, however, selling the same thing to two people is rank fraud.”

    That was BOA he was referring to. It would appear that I have the same situation on the borrower side, that he’s calling out on the investor side.

    Went to county recorder and got loan assignments. Notice of pendency filed in the summer of 2008, and on the same date and time, MERS and America’s Wholesale Lender (AWL) sold my mortgage to Countrywide (CW) and issued power of attorney to law group. Foreclosure began. I did the modification battle for nine months, finally getting a mod and was pulled out of foreclosure. Sweet people that they are, the mod increased my monthly payments, as 65% of the mods did back then. Obviously unsustainable. If you can’t afford X, why would anyone thing that XX would be a fix?

    Redefaulted. Been 30 months without making a payment. New notice of pendency issued in the spring of this year, once again at the same time an assignment of mortgage was filed and a new POA to law firm to start the foreclosure, this time from MERS/AWL, over to BOA. Foreclosure looms. Or does it?

    Look at these assignments. In 2008, AWL/MERS to CW. 2010, AWL/MERS to BOA. How does AWL sell my mortgage twice? What are the ramifications here, anyone? And can anyone comment on how the purchase of AWL&CW by BOA affects assignments? So many questions, so little time.

  14. Here’sthe rub: BOA can’t produce my note. The title s broken per a Chicago Title Report and I can’t have the title insured without a quiet title action. I won’t modify unless SOMEONE comes forward with the note who claims they properly own the note AND the note has some value. No one can tell me that. BOA refuses to take payments from me. So, what’s wrong with this picture???? Surely if no one comes forward with the note, and no one can prove what the note is worth because someone or more enities made payments on the note and BOA won’t take my money–what’ a person to do. I filed QT action and Declaratory Judgment for determination of ownership of the note and valuation but if BOA takes CHApter 11, which is clearly where they are headed based upon my legal experience, my house is in litigation hell for the next ten years. Bummer

  15. Wednesday, April 21. 2010
    Posted by Karl Denninger at 08:32
    A Sober Warning To The GOP – And The Democrats

    The political witch-hunt that is now being fomented related to the SEC’s charges against Goldman is a minefield that threatens to blow up the GOP for the next 20 years – if not permanently.

    The full-court press by right-wing talking heads such as Limbaugh and Hannity, who appear to have not bothered to do a bit of research into the matter before spouting off absolute nonsense, are piling on in a fashion that will just do further damage to the Republican brand.

    The premise here is that the SEC action was “concocted” in some fashion. Well, if that’s true, how come the key trader involved, Tourre, has been de-registered in London?

    Fabrice Tourre – the bond trader at the heart of Goldman Sachs’ fraud case – was on Tuesday barred from working in the City of London in the first ‘victory’ for financial regulators on both sides of the Atlantic.

    That’s not what you do if you did nothing wrong – or your employee did nothing wrong, conference call by Goldman with many “ahs” and “uhms” notwithstanding.

    It may get much worse. Zerohedge is reporting that the infamous C-BASS, the company formed by MGIC and Radian (and over which their pending merger blew itself to bits a couple of years ago), may be intertwined in the Goldman mess. There may be a story here – or maybe not. We’ll see as time passes.

    In the meantime there are a few Democrats that are not waiting around. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), among others, sent a letter to Eric Holder, US Attorney General, in which she said:

    If both global and domestic confidence in the integrity of the U.S. financial system is to be regained, there must be confidence that criminal acts will be vigorously pursued and perpetrators punished.

    While the SEC lacks the authority to act beyond civil actions, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has the power to file criminal actions against those who commit financial fraud. We ask assurance from you that the U.S. Department of Justice is closely looking at this case and similar cases to further investigate and prosecute the criminals involved in this, and other financially fraudulent acts. …..

    Exactly.

    So precisely what are the Republicans trying to argue for here? That the sort of misconduct that is alleged to have occurred here beyond the boundaries of the law, and that which does not rise to a criminal standard of conduct but which is exploitive of Americans, should be permitted to slide – either “because it’s in the past” or for more sinister reasons – like permitting the same looting to continue and be expanded in the future?

    Don’t feed me this crap about “expanding credit for Americans” – we’ve done that and it was a freaking DISASTER! Liar loans, 0 down, totally irresponsible HELOC and other lending policies, people tying small businesses to their houses and personal fortunes all so the bankers could skim off a huge piece of everything – and it all blew up.

    Now “they’re back” and making billions in bonuses – but what are they doing to earn that money? Banking and finance generally is a parasitic function. It’s a necessary function, but only to a point. Yes, we need to match those with capital with those who want to borrow capital, and that’s what banks do – but we don’t need to feed an insatiable monster that “demands” products that are unsound, unsafe, and crooked at their inception, nor do we have to permit these same bankers to continue to lie about their asset valuations.

    Yet we are.

    Let me be clear: The system will not hold together on the path we are on now. It can’t. It is demanding to be fed with ever-greater interest payments and ever-larger slices of the economy siphoned off, and the real economy can’t withstand that sort of attack.

    Look at consumer confidence – it came in at -50 today, just off record lows, .vs. projections of “improvement.” Improvement? Where? The real economy is choking to death under 29.9% interest rates as the bankster monster sits on it and plays vampire, sucking the blood from the economy.

    And Mayor Bloomberg has the chutzpa to tell the NYC Congressional delegation that they have to “fight” for NY. Fight? For what? For the ability to steal even more?

    Jefferson County Alabama funded NY’s fat-cat bankers and taxes – with a bribery scheme that sent several officials to prison. WHERE ARE THE INDICTMENTS OF THE BANKERS INVOLVED? The banks involved included in the swap deals that were both overpriced and may have been entered into in exchange for bribes include JP Morgan, Bear Stearns, Bank of America and Lehman Brothers. Two of the four are now dead, of course, but the other two are not.

    Oh, Mr. Langford? He got 15 years. How many years have the bankers gotten?

    NOT ONE DAMN DAY.

    Oh, Bill Blount (who did the bribing) went to prison too – he pled guilty.

    The bankers – and the banks themselves – that profited from this crooked set of deals? Not one penny has come back to the citizens of Birmingham, Alabama, nor has one bank executive been indicted. Never mind that Matt Taibbi has alleged that Goldman was effectively bribed to the tune of $3 million to stay out of the deals – by JP Morgan!

    Oh, and before anyone tries to hide behind a claim that “they didn’t know”, you might want to read this:

    Here you can see a trail that leads directly from a billion-dollar predatory swap deal cooked up at the highest levels of America’s biggest banks, across a vast fruited plain of bribes and felonies — “the price of doing business,” as one JP Morgan banker says on tape — all the way down to Lisa Pack’s sewer bill and the mass layoffs in Birmingham.

    Didn’t know eh? That dog won’t hunt.

    We can’t stop it? Like hell. Bill Black did stop it. Listen up:

    The banksters threatened to kill him by the way. Literally.

    To Congress and President Obama: Stop lying. You can put a stop to the scams – you’re refusing. You’re not unable, you’re unwilling. But this position you’ve adopted – the making of excuses and continued sponsorship of the scams and frauds of these “bastions of banking” has us moving ever-closer to the cliff, and once we go off it, there is no coming back.

    Let me make this clear. I’m a man of peaceful protest and I’ve called for legal and legislative remedies. 100 years of hard time with Bubba in the slammer for these clowns will do just fine. In fact I prefer it to violence, in that hard felony prison time will both last longer and hurt more.

    But I’m not the only one out here, and a lot of the people in this country are tired of the crap and within a hair of deciding that it’s time to roll up judge and jury into one, passing sentence personally. Howard Fineman, writing for Newsweek, sees the problem but as with most “pundits” refuse to identify the culprit, as pissing off half your advertisers (every big bank in the land) can impact tenure with the publication you write for.

    The people are done with being robbed, looted, bent over the table and violated repeatedly, while our nation’s corporations – banks included – are fined with wrist-slaps instead of hard time or worse, their actions are IGNORED and they’re even bailed out! Witness Pfizer, who I’ve written about – in 2009 the firm pled guilty to a criminal felony and paid $2.3 billion as a fine. What did the various agencies say at the time?

    “Today’s landmark settlement is an example of the Department of Justice’s ongoing and intensive efforts to protect the American public and recover funds for the federal treasury and the public from those who seek to earn a profit through fraud. It shows one of the many ways in which federal government, in partnership with its state and local allies, can help the American people at a time when budgets are tight and health care costs are increasing,” said Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli. “This settlement is a testament to the type of broad, coordinated effort among federal agencies and with our state and local partners that is at the core of the Department of Justice’s approach to law enforcement.”

    What did Pfizer do?

    American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc. and its subsidiary, Pharmacia & Upjohn Company Inc., have agreed to pay $2.3 billion, the largest health care fraud settlement in the history of the Department of Justice, to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from the illegal promotion of certain pharmaceutical products, the Justice Department announced today.

    This was a first offense, right? The company did a bad thing, got caught, and had been a good corporate citizen. It was an “isolated incident”, yes?

    Uh, no, it was not.

    A division of Pfizer Inc., the world’s largest drugmaker, has agreed to plead guilty to two felonies and pay $430 million in penalties to settle charges that it fraudulently promoted the drug Neurontin for a string of unapproved uses.

    In an agreement announced by government prosecutors Thursday, Pfizer unit Warner-Lambert admitted that it aggressively marketed the epilepsy drug by illicit means for unrelated conditions including bipolar disorder, pain, migraine headaches, and drug and alcohol withdrawal.

    Same offense, five years previous – in 2004.

    There wasn’t anyone involved in both of these illegal acts, right? Different people that just happened to be in the same company?

    Wrong again.

    Jeff Kindler, who became Pfizer’s general counsel in 2002, supervised the lawyers who made the promises to prosecutors. By 2004, Kindler increased the compliance budget 12-fold. He became chief executive officer in 2006. In Pfizer’s ethics guide, he says stories about misbehaving companies and executives abound.

    “Pfizer truly stands apart,” he says. “I am proud of our record.” On Oct. 1, Kindler was elected to the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Kindler declined to comment.

    Not only was the same guy the general counsel in 2002 when the first offense happened he had been promoted to CEO when the second occurred.

    Mr. Kindler’s “penalty” for being involved in not only one but two felony criminal violations of the law at Pfizer? He was elected (by the banks, of course) to the board of The Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Oh, and he’s “proud” of Pfizer’s record – a record he was responsible for.

    Perhaps you can explain why the people should sit still while our government, which is supposed to enforce laws, allows not just one offense but corporate recidivism – with an offense that includes aggresisvely peddling drugs for unapproved uses. Out here in the real world we call that “drug dealing” and when the drug is heroin or PCP, and we catch them, we lock people involved up for life.

    But when you run a big pharmaceutical company and in essence commit the same offense you get your hand slapped, get promoted for the first offense and then when you do it again you get elected to the board of the institution that executes monetary policy for the entire United States!

    I keep brining up the Pfizer case – and the Jefferson County one – because they are outrageous in their impact on ordinary people and the brazen nature of what occurred. There’s also no doubt that criminal acts were involved, since in both cases the parties (or corporations) either were found or pled guilty.

    That is, these felony aren’t allegations, they’re facts.

    But in each case the prime actors go free. Nobody does hard time and nobody even loses a business license. Pfizer wasn’t shut down nor did it lose the ability to do business with the government. The banks involved in the Jefferson County Alabama swap deals were not prosecuted, they didn’t lose their banking licenses, they didn’t have to return any of the money they “made”, and the people of the county still got screwed. Then those very same banks jacked up half the nation’s credit card interest rates to 29.9% – while The Fed lent them our money at zero.

    The latter is important, by the way. If I steal a car and then sell it to you, when you’re caught with the stolen car you don’t get to keep it. It doesn’t matter if you’re out lots of money as a consequence – you never had a right to the car in the first place, as it was the fruit of a poison tree. Why haven’t these banks been forced to disgorge every penny that Jefferson County paid them, since the funds they got were likewise the fruit of a felonious series of events?

    Oh yeah, there was allegedly a probe on the Jefferson County (and other municipalities that got scammed too) matter – in 2008.

    Before the election.

    WHAT CAME OF IT AND WHY HAVE THERE BEEN ZERO INDICTMENTS?

    Nearly two years later, all we know is that there “was” an investigation… but we also know why the banks got involved in these slimy deals. Read it right here:

    “Swap deals were more numerous and higher fees available,” Snell said in the interview. “In addition, swap transactions have much more flexibility for payment because there is no requirement, as there is in new money transactions, that the fees be disclosed.”

    Hide the cost, hide the fees, don’t disclose any of it, and, in the case of Jefferson County, if some of the officials there get involved in a little bribery, well, it’s nothing that a higher fee won’t take care of covering!

    Or shall we talk about book-cooking? Oh hell, why not, let’s do Wells Fargo, which has a grand-pappy popping $1.76 trillion freaking dollars in QSPEs off balance sheet! The alleged “maximum exposure to loss” (according to them)? A mere $43.5 billion – that is, the claim is made that a minuscule 2.4% could possibly – in the worst case – be lost, but not one penny more!

    Oh, what’s in the black box? Well, we can start with a cool $1.1 trillion in “conforming” mortgages, including Ginnie-guaranteed paper. The latter, by the way, has an actual guarantee from the Federal Government – but note that the breakdown between the two is not specified. Why not, given that Fannie and Freddie paper is not legally guaranteed – even though it is currently “backstopped.” Given how little Ginnie did in originations prior to the FHA ramping up in the last couple of years why do I suspect that “conforming” might not even actually mean “wrapped by Fannie or Freddie”? After all, the legal term of art “conforming” in this case merely means it qualified to be sold to the GSEs – not that it was, or that it was wrapped by them!

    Then there’s $251 billion in non-conforming mortgages. How many of those are Wachoiva “Pick-a-Pay” monstrosities that Wells swallowed? Hmmmm… Oh, and let’s add in $345 billion in commercial mortgage securitizations (not whole loans – securitizations!) which, if you remember, FITCH said 10% of the total outstanding would be in default by the end of the year.

    If that’s not enough for you the unconsolidated VIEs are also in the mix off balance sheet, and in there we find $56 billion in CDOs (heh, how are those performing, and what sort of CDOs are these? Are there any synthetics in there?) and, of course, just to round things out, a cool $23.8 billion in CLOs (collateralized loan obligations.)

    To put this all in perspective for the company to hold the “standard” 4 and 8% Tier Capital against this the bank would have to have almost $160 billion in Tier Capital (for the 8% standard) in addition to coverage for the formal, on-balance sheet debt that the company has – and this assumes that all those “carrying values” accurately reflect the actual value of these securities. Anyone care to bet on what the market price is on this box-chock-full-of-god-knows-what should they want to – or have to – sell it?

    Of course Wells doesn’t have the capital behind that nor can we see what’s actually in the box, other than their “category list.” The “off balance sheet” games permit this sort of thing – a dandy arrangement right up until the belief that the maximum value at risk of $43 billion turns out to be a wild-eyed fantasy.

    Then the taxpayer gets tapped on the shoulder and told that tanks will roll unless we fork up $700 billion tomorrow – again.

    We learned exactly nothing from ENRON and MCI, or for that matter from Lehman and the 2008 debacle – did we?

    Why did I pick on Wells? Besides the fact that they make it reasonably easy to find this crap in their financial statements, for no particular reason. The other banks aren’t quite as bad, but when we’re in the hundreds of billions off-balance sheet – does it matter?

    No.

    We desperately need politicians who will cut the crap and put a stop to all of this, right here and now. No more flim-flamming, no more off-balance-sheet crap, no more hidden fees, no more bribery and no more extortion. Do any of the above, go to prison – period.

    If you need someone with experience in the matter, call Bill Black.

    Will this “constrain credit”? Not among those who are truly qualified to borrow. Note that our local community banks didn’t pull any of this garbage – bribing people, holding a trillion in so-called “assets” off balance sheet and running complex derivative books intended to make price discovery and fair dealing impossible.

    Force the big banks to stop all of it right here and now. If they can’t survive with everything they hold consolidated on their balance sheet, that’s too bad. We have thousands of community banks that would be happy to have the business, and that will make sound loans.

    Demand that The Fed cut the “below zero” real interest rates. Get rid of the Clinton-era machinations in the CPI, and mandate that the short end of the rate curve be held above the true rate of inflation. Why? Because it must always cost something to borrow in real terms or you get monstrous malinvestment, bubbles and crashes. If Bernanke won’t put a stop to this garbage right here and now then The Fed’s charter must be revoked.

    Why aren’t you doing this? Because you’re being bribed, that’s why:

    Democrats and Republicans have held at least three dozen fund-raising events with Wall Street bankers and lobbyists for companies such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley.

    Invitations to some of the fund-raisers highlight access to lawmakers. “This unique program provides benefits designed to give you quality time with Republican policy makers through small gatherings,” wrote Sen. John Cornyn (R., Texas) to Wall Street executives in an invitation to join a business council of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, which he heads.

    The donation requested: $10,000. The group held discussions with GOP senators in February and March.

    Democrats raising money from the financial-services industry include Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, who went to New York this year for a fund-raising event with several executives from Goldman Sachs.

    Maybe Congress can explain why the 535 criminals in the District of Corruption shouldn’t all be in prison?

    Time to choose ‘Dems – and ‘Pubs. No more obfuscation and no more lies. You’re either going to act on the fraud, or you’re not. November is coming and before you think you’ll skate on this one, I suggest you harken back to 2008, when everyone thought the same thing after Bear Stearns blew up.

    How did that work out, exactly, and why do you think you can stop the next collapse when it comes?

    If you don’t act, and soon, it most certainly will.
    Download:
    FLVMP43GP

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