Friday, August 26, 2011

double-O quashes state investigations of wall st. banks

Video - Don Corleone had all the judges and the politicians in New York, and he must share them.

WSWS | The Obama administration has intervened to support a settlement by banks charged with fraudulent practices in the processing of home foreclosures that would prevent state governments, New York in particular, from carrying out their own investigations of major Wall Street firms.

The New York Times reported Monday that Shaun Donovan, the US secretary of housing and urban development, together with high-ranking Justice Department personnel, has been “waging an intensifying campaign” to persuade Eric T. Schneiderman, the New York attorney general, to drop his opposition to a settlement of the home foreclosure charges.

Under the proposed settlement, major banks including JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Bank of America, would pay a combined total of $20 billion, which would supposedly go toward home loan modifications and homeowner counseling. In return, bank executives would be shielded from possible civil suits or criminal prosecutions arising from state probes into their role in fueling the sub-prime mortgage bubble, whose collapse triggered the financial meltdown of September 2008.

Schneiderman’s office has opened several inquiries into banking practices during the mortgage boom of the mid-2000s.

Last year it emerged that banks and mortgage companies forged documents and paid employees with no knowledge of the homes in question to sign legal documents that were then used to process foreclosures.

The amount of the settlement of charges arising from these practices—$20 billion—represents a financial wrist-slap for banks that made multiples of this figure from the creation and sale of securities linked to toxic home loans. These banks have continued to reap huge profits from speculative bets in the midst of a global economic crisis of their own making that has destroyed the jobs and living standards of countless millions in the US and around the world. Nevertheless, the banks have resisted paying even this token sum.

$20 billion will barely make a dent in a foreclosure crisis that has already thrown millions of Americans out of their homes. US homeowners collectively owe the banks $753 billion more than the market value of their homes.

Schneiderman has based his opposition to the deal on provisions barring future litigation against the banks. The Times quoted Danny Kanner, a spokesman for Schneiderman, as saying, “The attorney general remains concerned by any attempt at a global settlement that would shut down ongoing investigations of wrongdoing related to the mortgage crisis.”

Schneiderman is only the most prominent of several state attorneys general, including Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada and Beau Biden of Delaware, who have refused to support the proposed settlement.

In pressuring Schneiderman to drop his opposition to the deal, the Obama administration claims to be motivated by a desire for a quick resolution that would funnel $20 billion in aid to hard-pressed homeowners. “Our view is we have the immediate opportunity to help a huge number of borrowers to stay in their homes, to help their neighborhoods and the housing market,” Donovan told the Times.

A spokeswoman for the Justice Department echoed this line, telling the newspaper, “The Justice Department, along with our federal agency partners and state attorneys general, are committed to... bring relief swiftly because homeowners continue to suffer more each day that these issues are not resolved.”


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Big Don said...

Nah... Don Vito is being a wimp knuckling under and compromising with his enemies.  Recognize that Defense is Number_One, and this is not the best strategy for a reliable defense.  By far the most hard-hitting no-nonsense scene in The Godfather is where Michael Corleone states, "Today I take care of *all* family business..."  A total wipeout of the opponents.  That's true *Leadership*.  A solid defense that *Works* without any equivocation......

CNu said...

uh..., BD - you may need to up the strength of your Excelon patch dosages dood - cause this article here has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with commander in chief of the military bidnis....,

Tom said...

BD, just checking in on your theory of ethics.  You and your political faction represent a clear and present threat to ... shit, to every living thing on this planet, but for now let's stick with ... me.  You represent a threat to me and my family.  Not necessarily in reality.  I just mean as far as I can tell.  You seem like a Breivik type character to me; those guys are known liberal-killers.   Dig?  It's a pretty solid story, and every time I repeat it to myself it gets more solid.

For all I know you might find my IP and locate my house.  You could be working on it right now.  In point of fact, you are believed to be working on it.  You're believed to be a racist extremist with frequently-expressed views on pre-emptive violence.   You are believed to be armed.

What should I do here, to defend my family?

Dale Asberry said...

Clearly, take care of *all* family business. But I think LD would prefer you to sit and wait for his kind to come kill all'y'all.

Tom said...

Apparently in BD-think, the central duty of each responsible adult human should be to exterminate all human life on the planet. Except for their own family.  (Not sure where in-laws fit in.)  

 It's a tall order, but what can you do?

Big Don said...

You are confused as to the definition of an enemy...I don't believe you want to kill or rob BD.  Sparring with y'all just provides some of the day's intellectual amusement for a decrepit geezer... 

CNu said... to check out the comments attending this post is to know precisely the kind of political economy for which you advocate BD. No one is confused about where your antipathies lie....,

Tom said...

"kill or rob BD"

No, what I really want ... oh, nevermind.

nanakwame said...

That is a profane reality, it will not transform to way past my journey on this earth.  They also created some smart and armed Black Men, game changed.

CNu said...

to the contrary Nana, it's a work in progress whose momentum is likely already unstoppable...,