Posts Tagged ‘Banking’

Blowing the Lid Off the Obama Bail-outs: B of A Hiding the Damage?

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Where His Bread Is Buttered?

Bank of America has come under fire, and there is now a class-action lawsuit by borrowers who feel as though they are being cheated by the banking giant, and perhaps on behalf of a political agenda.  As has now become plain, Bank of America is using its internal bureaucracy to slow down the wheels long enough for Barack Obama to be re-elected, before the full scope of tax-payer liability is revealed in the whole bank bail-out scheme and mortgage modification scam put forward by the Obama administration.  Borrowers are complaining that they have brought their accounts current under the new modifications to their mortgages, but that the banking giant is keeping them in limbo in order to hide the truly damaging scope of the bail-outs.

You see, the deal isn’t done until each mortgage modification has made its way through the paper-shuffle at the Bank of America, but this is causing trouble for borrowers who have long since gotten their financial house in order and need to secure loans on such things as new cars.  They’re finding out that their credit reports still show the mortgages as overdue, despite the fact that they’ve complied with their agreements on the modifications to their mortgages, some of them longer than two years ago.  Why is it taking Bank of America so long to square things away?  The answer is simple, and political, and it comes down to more subterfuge on behalf of their favorite politicians.  You see, when these deals are finalized, they’ll show a loss, and it will be huge, and they want to be sure to minimize damage until after the November elections.

In the mean time, their now-current mortgage-holders are simply in limbo, and while we can argue that they might deserve a hit on their credit, they would get one anyway, but the truth is that these mortgage holders may have been only a month or two behind, and made the agreement as a stop-gap since so many were recently unemployed at the time.  They didn’t think this would drag on, or that two years later, their credit reports would show them as non-payers on their mortgages for more than two years.  Worse, Bank of America is in receipt of funds for this purpose under the Home Affordable Modification Program(HAMP)

In one case, the complaint against Bank Of America alleges:

“[Bank of America] has serially strung out, delayed, and otherwise hindered the modification processes,” leaving thousands of borrowers “often worse off than they were before they sought a modification.”

This is quite the enterprise.  Bank of America took $25 Billion from the US government in order to facilitate these modifications, and to date, they’ve actually sat on most of that money while tying up the loan modifications in red tape.  Worse, the longer this goes on, the worse the position of those now in limbo.  You might ask why they’d be interested in doing all of this, since they could simply modify the mortgages and move on, but that might be a sticky matter.  Bank of America would have to report large losses that would demonstrate the failure of TARP.  As long as all of these modifications are in limbo, they are neither losses nor does BofA need to disburse any of the $25 billion.  that makes a whale of a difference on balance sheets as reported to investors.

Another reason Bank of America may be keeping this “in process” is that the elections of 2012 are just around the corner, and BofA has made significant investments in the political arena.  A trip to OpenSecrets.org reveals that in 2008 alone, Barack Obama cashed in to the tune of nearly $400,000 from BofA contributors.  In 2012, Mitt Romney has received a fair amount of cash, as has Obama, from Bank of America-related sources.  Coincidence?  Possibly, but Bank of America has so many ties to so many high-ranking politicians, including our previous President that it’s hard to pin this down on a partisan basis.  It looks more like a ruling-class benefit, looking at the objects of political giving associated with Bank of America.

On Tuesday, a tweet came in from none other than Ann Barnhardt with a link to another story about Bank of America, and what the author over at market-ticker thinks of the institution, along with a track-back to what Matt Taibbi, an Occupy Wall Street member has to say about all of this.  At least in this context, Mr. Taibbi is correct:  Bank of America should be allowed to fail.  It’s been propped up and supported and kept afloat with your future tax dollars.  Worse, with politicians of both parties in its hip pocket, there seems to be no end in sight.  It makes it easier to understand how characters like Barack Obama, an anti-capitalist, and Mitt Romney, a self-described “capitalist” both supported TARP, an astonishingly anti-capitalist idea.  It also explains why we, the tax-payers, keep getting placed on the hook for the failures of these firms.

Unless and until we start paying closer attention to whom it is that funds our politicians, we are likely to see this same trend continue unabated.  What does it say about what we’ve let become of capitalism that these large institutions are able to purchase so much influence in our political system?  I don’t have a problem with donations, and I think they should be unlimited, but we voters are going to need to pay attention to the flip-side of that:  We will need to pay attention to the disclosures, and vote accordingly.  As I’ve reported previously, Bank of America along with Chase have moved some risky Euro-based derivatives into coverage by the FDIC.

This needs to cease, and I’m concerned that if we elect Mitt Romney, this will continue like a hand-off from George W. Bush to Barack Obama to Mitt Romney, and that it will continue unabated.  The large banks that are failing need to fail, and the American taxpayer has every reason to expect its government to be good stewards of their money, instead of putting good money after bad.  Here we have a company that has abused its customers in order to take money from the Federal government in order to assist them.  Whatever you may think of the HAMP program philosophically, it was implemented in law, and to see this sort of abuse continue is ridiculous, but to see it continued even longer to allow some politicians cover is a scandal about which we should all be concerned.

 

Greece Seeing Runs on Banks – Escalating

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Making a Withdrawal - Of Everything

We’re seeing the beginning of the end for Greece.  The runs on banks area escalating even now.  People are beginning to panic as they realize their life savings are at risk, and they’re withdrawing the money so they can stuff their mattresses.  The problem is, hyper-inflation, which may be just around the corner, will turn their mattresses full of paper into worthless kindling.  There’s no point in pretending otherwise, as the Greeks have looted their own government and monetary system to the extent that it’s probably unrecoverable.  Greece is going down. Back in the 1980′s, as I listened to the first debates about the formation of the EU, I listened to opponents.

They worried that they were getting suckered into a bottomless pit of debt with the Mediterranean countries, that were well-known for their fiscal and monetary unreliability.   I feel badly for Europe, but guess what?  Our Federal Reserve and the International Monetary Fund have managed to link us to the same fate. Here are some tidbits from Bild via ForexCrunch:

“I come here to immediately pick up my pension € 300. Who knows what else happened today. My money is safe only when it is at home” said Pensioners Evagelos Dimitros age 73.

The head of an Athens bank branch told BILD: “More and more Greeks who still have some money come to get it from the bank. In my office there are a total of 5,000 customers, 2,500 of which either have their money transferred abroad or hoard it at home. If this continues, there will soon be no more money.”

This is a warning and an alarm bell ringing for all of Europe.  This is the beginning of the collapse of the European single currency, whether they realize it or not.  The British should jump ship from the EU Titanic if they wish to save themselves.  The Germans may be left holding the bag, and Italy is on the verge of following suit immediately.

Ladies and gentlemen, through a string of bad decisions, and suicidal policies that have promoted the growth of socialism, we have a true calamity coming.  Even now, as the  European heads of state meet to discuss what to do next, it seems they will fail to avert this crisis. Of course they will.  There’s no way around it.  Neither big government, nor even big, big, big government can fix this in any way but one: Slash spending.  Until the member governments are willing to do that, there’s no hope.

Unholy Alliance Between Church and State

Monday, October 24th, 2011

Unholy Alliance Between Church and State

I was born and raised in the Catholic Church and I understand its teachings, but I cannot accept this outrageous proposition by Pope Benedict for a new Central World Bank.  In my view, he can take his statist proposition and burn with it in the lake of fire.  This is a sinful proposal, because it arrogantly ignores that which the church teaches about free will.  One of the things about which I have long been at odds with the Catholic Church has been its preaching of “social justice” via social policies of governments.  This perhaps applies salve to those who feel some guilt in what wealth they have earned, but more frequently, it provides a moral escape hatch for those who produce nothing while demanding that others pay their way.

This is the source of a great rift in the church, greater even than questions over issues of abortion, homosexuality, and pedophilia among priests.  This is a matter of what the church teaches its people at a fundamental level, and Pope Benedict’s proposal is one that should cause mortal shame in the Vatican.  That institution has been collecting and sitting on vast wealth for nearly the entire period of its existence, and the fact that it wants so-called “social justice” at the point of a gun is the last piece you need to understand how morally bankrupt the Church has become.  In the days of John Paul II’s early years, he fought with Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher against the tyranny of communism.  For me, the Catholic Church is now officially dead, because through this proposal, Pope Benedict XVI is joining the church in Communism.

There are  no good works one can accomplish if one practices evil in order to carry them out.  This proposition on the part of the Pope is something that must be confronted, and I intend to do so.  There is a reason the Church has lost credibility, and when you see that they have extended into the world of politics and governance to the extent this proposal portends, you can know that the institution of the Church is in serious trouble.  So desperate is the Church to fill its coffers from the world’s poor that it now relies upon a proposal to enslave them.  In this instance, the Vatican is actually demanding global taxes on financial transactions.   WHAT?

If you think it is bad when government involves itself in the realm of religion, imagine what it is when religion takes over governance on a claim of moral authority over people and nations who may not subscribe to its claim of authority.  Every protestant who ever had doubts about the Catholic church have just had them confirmed in this  proposal.  Of all the abominable hypocrisies put forward in this proposal, here, I think is the most stunning of all:

“In fact, the crisis has revealed behaviours like selfishness, collective greed and hoarding of goods on a great scale,”(emphasis added)

Here you have the ultimate in hypocrisy:  An institution that has hoarded the wealth of ages while continuing to collect wealth from even the poorest of its flock actually bothers to address the question of “collective greed?”  What can be more greedy than a Church hierarchy that occupies a palace in a nation established for its own propagation and preservation?  What?  What is greater greed than this? Pope Benedict should be ashamed to attach his name to any of this, and indeed, Catholics should recoil in horror.  Here is the ugly reality of the nature of these actions by the Church: It  is now collaborating with the devils of socialism and communism.

The most disturbing part of this proposal by the Vatican was the appeal for a “Global Authority.”  Yes, the Vatican just asked for a one-world government to oversee currency, banking, and apparently, taxation.  I will never submit to this, and I hereby denounce the Vatican, this Pope, and all the hypocrisies for which they have chosen to stand.  The church and the Pope are supposed to be spiritual leaders, but this is direct involvement in the lives of all men through government’s tentacles, and it’s an astonishing rejection of the pursuit of liberty Pope John Paul II had undertaken in the 1980s.  My complaint here is not with Catholics, but with the institution that claims to lead them.  This proposal is not born of the teachings of Jesus Christ, but of foolish old men in the Vatican who have forgotten what it is they are to do, and have become too comfortable in their museum-like  surroundings.  The Vatican is no longer the seat of the greatest Christian church on the planet, but a jewel-encrusted mausoleum that has entombed its principles beneath a stone lid of politics and corruption.  Once, the Catholic Church stood against tyranny, but as we now see all too clearly, the Vatican has gotten in bed with it.

Weakening America: The Federal Reserve’s Latest Risky Scheme

Saturday, October 22nd, 2011

Taxpayers on the Hook - Again

It simply doesn’t seem possible, and yet here it is, right in front of us: Our own Federal Reserve under the direction of Ben Bernanke is pushing for a policy that will leave American tax-payers on the hook for tens of trillions of dollars in liabilities.  European derivatives for Bank of America in its Merrill investment banking unit  are being shifted to the depository arm and this is insured under FDIC, your Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.  That’s right, this is going to be a gigantic crisis when Europe finally implodes, and with Greece now needing a 60% write-down on its bonds, you must know that calamity is right around the corner.   What’s worse is that it is now revealed that this will be hidden from you in part due to Dodd-Frank, the “financial reform” law that Congress passed in 2010.

Ladies and gentlemen, our country is being systematically destroyed.  These obligations are the financial form of a dirty bomb planted in the US Treasury, and it will destroy us.  This is insanity.  It also turns out JP Morgan is doing much the same thing.  We’re talking about trillions of dollars in redistribution of tax-payer wealth to private global banking interests.  This is setting the stage for the mother of all bail-outs.  I can’t believe that this is being done, or that anybody thinks this is a prudent plan.  It’s as though the American tax-payer is being robbed at gunpoint without knowing it.

This is the one thing about which Ron Paul is consistently correct:  The power of the Federal Reserve system must be curtailed if not eliminated entirely.  We simply can’t afford any more of this.  It has the potential for destroying us.  Our political leaders must stand against this, but in too many cases, they’re part of the problem because they’ve enabled much of this.

We need a return to a sound monetary system, and those who think it should be tied to the other currencies of the globe are out of their minds.  Of course, they want that for the same reason this is being done:  To offer themselves protection. Ladies and gentlemen, we’re looking at a possible, or even probably catastrophe here, and other than just a rare few media outlets, nobody is telling you about it. You should begin to wonder why they’re not.