Last week, the week of
December 12th, while most Americans were getting ready for the
Christmas holidays, Congress was in session.
While parents stood in line
at Toys R Us, buying their children toys from their wish list, congress voted
in their last congressional bill of the year essentially freeing the banks,
once again, from any significant regulation. In essence, they completely undermined the Dodd-Frank
Regulation. In addition, if
WallStreet fails in this latest gamble, we will bail them out once again with
our tax dollars.
Our Congress has essentially given over our rights to corporate rule while we
decorated our Christmas trees with garlands and candy canes…and our children
dream of what Santa will be bringing them….well, some of us did, anyway.
Thousands of Americans have
already lost their homes without due process of law. They have been out-financed and out-maneuvered without ever
truly knowing how to fight back. Families
didn’t see it coming. They were
removed from their homes with no concern for where they would go from there, or
what time of year it was or how cold the weather was outside. All of this is happening in spite of
the litany of lawsuits and studies outlining the fact that mortgage fraud has
been the result of insider investors and market manipulations. (http://wearenotdeadbeats.com/1973.html)
Many of the Congressional
members who voted have already been voted out of office, and this vote was
their last flip of the finger to their constituency….unless their constituency
consisted of only corporations.
The American families have been sold out once again.
So many of us stand in
pride as we salute our flag and remember our well-taught rich history of being
the guardians of justice. Have we
now become the purveyors of the oligarchy? Have we become the very thing our ancestors sought to flee?
Make no mistake, there are
serious laws that have been broken with regarding to our property rights. Yet in spite of these laws and in spite
of the plethora of documented wrong-doing homeowners are still being
“Sen. Warren: All right. Now, if a family wants to bring a lawsuit, you’re
both lawyers, would it be helpful, if you’re going against one of these big
banks, would it be helpful for these families to have the information about
their case that’s in your files. Mr. Ashton?
Mr. Ashton, Fed: It would be
helpful, obviously, to have information related to the injury, yes it would.
Sen. Warren: Okay. So, do
you plan to give the families this information? That is, those families that
have been victims of illegal foreclosures, will you be giving them the
information that’s in your possession about how the banks illegally foreclosed
against them? Mr. Ashton?
Mr. Ashton, Fed: I think that’s
a decision that we’re still considering. We haven’t made a final decision yet.
Sen. Warren: So you have made a decision to protect the banks, but not a
decision to tell the families who were illegally foreclosed against?”
Is this the America we have
raised our children to be proud to defend?
Many families have not yet
been touched by the specter of mortgage fraud and would still prefer to believe
the propaganda of the ‘deadbeat’ homebuyer than review the multitude of
evidence that tells us otherwise.
They feel protected not to probe further, but by turning a blind eye the
WallStreet Lenders continue to run amok with no regulations and no oversight,
and with the recent passage of this recent bill allowing a
provision rolling back Dodd-Frank that would allow major banks to carry out
certain risky derivatives trades through funds insured by the FDIC.
Understand this….WallStreet HAS TO CHEAT to win. Our Congress knows this, and they still
passed this bill allowing further deregulation.
The FCIC (Financial Crisis Inquiry Committee)
issues it’s final review to Congress in February 2011. It is available here: http://fcic.law.stanford.edu/
The report cites the growth of derivatives as one
of the factors leading to the financial crisis, yet congress has once again
loosened regulations on these problem derivatives setting us up once again for
a major crash.
“While visions of sugar plums dance in their
Homelessness is higher than it has ever been in
our country as investment firms buy up foreclosed homes for their investors by
the thousands. The same firms that
helped to bring us the financial crisis our now packaging and selling the
product of their previous fraud as investments to foreign and domestic
investors, once again, unsuspecting of the corruption in the products they are
Adam J. Levintin from Georgetown University, gave
written testimony before the House
Financial Services Committee Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity,
on November 18, 2010. In that
report he stated the following:
“The servicing problems stem from servicers’ failed business
model. Servicers are primarily in the transaction processing business and are
failing miserably at trying to adapt themselves to the loan modification
business. Servicers’ business model also encourages them to cut costs wherever
possible, even if this involves cutting corners on legal requirements, and to
lard on junk fees and in-sourced expenses at inflated prices.
incentives of mortgage servicers also encourage them to foreclose, rather than
modify loans in many cases, even when modification would maximize the net
present value of the loan for investors.
The chain of title problems are highly technical, but they pose a
potential systemic risk to the US economy. If mortgages were not properly
transferred in the securitization process, then mortgage-backed securities
would in fact not be backed by any mortgages whatsoever.
The chain of title
concerns stem from transactions that make assumptions about the resolution of
unsettled law. If those legal issues are resolved differently, then there would
be a failure of the transfer of mortgages into securitization trusts, which
would cloud title to nearly every property in the United States and would
create contract rescission/putback liabilities in the trillions of dollars, greatly
exceeding the capital of the US’s major financial institutions.
These problems are very serious. At best they present problems of
fraud on the court, clouded title to properties coming out of foreclosure, and
delay in foreclosures that will increase the shadow housing inventory and drive
down home prices. At worst, they represent a systemic risk that would bring the
US financial system back to the dark days of the fall of 2008.
Congress would do well to ensure that federal regulators are
undertaking a thorough investigation of foreclosure problems and to consider
the possibilities for a global settlement of foreclosure problems, loan
modifications, and the housing debt overhang on consumers and financial
institutions that stagnate the economy and pose potential systemic risk.”
While our congressional
leaders ignore their own commissioned reports and our oversite regulators turn
a blind eye to the fraud, thousands, if not millions, of American families
suffer the consequences, yet corporations have seen their best profits ever.
Invitation Homes is an
investment firm that owns over 45,000 rental homes throughout the nation. They buy up blocks of foreclosed homes,
sometimes 1400 at a time and rent them out. Invitation homes is the brainchild of Blackstone
Funding. Blackstone Funding, a
foreign investment firm, is also the major backer of PennyMac. For those who do not know, PennyMac is
a corporation opened up by the same executives that helped crash our economy
While many of us were
walking the malls, or perusing our local stores in search of the perfect ‘white
elephant’ gift, many children have no where to lay their head this year, let
alone put up their Christmas tree.
While executives who helped to crash our economy plan their next new
dice roll of our American Tax dollars, congress was aiding them by voting to
slash regulations for WallStreet bankers, they also decided to cut funding to
help prevent homelessness by $300 million. This is what happens when there are NO PROSECUTIONS….they
just do it again. Oh….and they
gave corporations permission to cut pension funds….I wonder if that means the
corporations will cut executive pay and bonuses, also. Nah, I kind of doubt that.
The bill cuts $300 million from Pell Grants for
low-income college students and gives it to student loan debt collectors.
The bill also opens up the prospect of unlimited
campaign contributions by private individuals and corporations.
From President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: “It is rather for us to be here
dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead
we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full
measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not
have died in vain -- that this nation, under
God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people,
shall not perish from the earth.”
We were taught to memorize
President Lincoln’s speech in the 3rd grade. I helped my grandson memorize this
speech just recently. I
cried. This is not the America I
see before me now.
Is this new America the
America we want?
I cannot help but wonder
how the Nazi’s began to remove the Jewish people and their supporters from
their homes. What pretense did
they use when it began? What lie
did their neighbors tell themselves as they saw their neighbors removed and
relocated to the projects?
It won’t happen to me?
The people who removed
these people from their homes were their neighbors, their friends. The people who put human beings to
death had calloused themselves to their evil deeds, they justified it as
“following orders” ignoring the suffering and human plight.
But that could not happen to us,
right? So what do the sheriff’s
tell them selves when they remove victimized families from their homes? How does a man say he was just “doing
his job” when he chokes a man to death?
How do the lawyers justify it to themselves as they utter false
documentation into the court? What
do the Judges tell themselves when they silence the cries for justice and deny
due process? And what do our
Congressional leaders tell themselves when they vote to allow the continued
plunder of our land and our people?
I’m not a Jew? I’m not in a Union? I’m not a rebel? I am not Black? I am not Hispanic? I am not Gay? I’m not a deadbeat?
It won’t happen to me?
long as I have secured a future for me and my family it doesn’t matter?
First they came for the Socialists,
and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade
Unionists, and I did not speak out—Because I was
not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I
did not speak out—Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was
no one left to speak for me.
Written by Martin
Niemoller, a protestant pastor, during the Holocaust.
Here in Los Angeles we have
the Museum of Tolerance, dedicated to educate and enlighten mankind to
understand that to avoid the harm caused by the holocaust it is crucial that we
make this world a better place. The
Museum is dedicated to the education of mankind in the hopes that we will learn
from history so as not to repeat it.
Yet from where I sit…I see history about to repeat itself, only this
time the United States will be the villain.
When did our Congress cease
to represent the people?
We have to take a stand
and say NEVER AGAIN. Never again!
Please call your
congressional leaders and let them know they need to represent ALL the people! No more corporate bailouts, and no more
lack of regulations for the TBTF Lenders.
For any of you who missed us....we were down and out for a couple of months, but we're back now with a new more relative website name. Elainegalindo.com is now WeAreNotDeadbeats.com!!
So for all of you out there fighting the fight for your reputation of not being the 'deadbeat' in this fraudulent WallStreet free-for-all, we are your source of information.
Look on the right of this page, choose the chapter on Mortgage Fraud News Today and get our list of settlements and research outlining the fact that the homeowners were not to blame for this fiasco. Let me repeat that for the Foreclosure attorneys, and Servicers and their pretender lenders who peek in here: THE HOMEOWNERS WERE NOT TO BLAME FOR THIS FIASCO!!
It seems that
Angelo Mozilo is re-emerging as a person of interest with regard to mortgage
fraud. Could it be that the masses
are looking for a sacrifice? After
the latest Bank of America settlement of almost 17 billion dollars over
admitted mortgage fraud, people are demanding some serious prosecutions.
Let’s face it,
as sacrifices go, Angelo (hereafter, Angie-baby) Mozilo is a good
candidate. He is over 70 years
old, has had a good life, is worth millions (if not billions) of dollars and
has already, more than likely, invested a good deal of it in off-shore accounts
or in family trusts.
Let’s not forget
that his sons are making a good living cashing in on the foreclosure
crisis. Mark Mozilo runs a company
called CalCap Advisors, a real estate advisor firm who buys and sells
distressed and foreclosed mortgages to investors.
Bloomberg report of August 21, 2014 “The last-ditch
effort comes three years after the Justice Department abandoned a criminal probe
of Mozilo. In 2012, public anger over the lack of prosecutions stemming from
the financial crisis spurred the Obama administration to create a team devoted to
investigating fraud in mortgage-backed securities. The group has wrestled at
least $20 billion from Wall Street banks using a law with a relatively low
threshold for suing and a long period to bring cases.”
many homeowners have made the trek down to their local sheriff’s department to
report the fraud only to be turned away with the currently immortalized
phrase: “That is a civil
matter.” For those of us on the homeowner front
we have come to realize the rule of law does not apply for us. The fury of the American people has
been simmering for quite sometime…and in Los Angeles, at least, Law Enforcement
feels that the time is ripe for a prosecution.
And not a prosecution of the homeowners this time...but let's prosecute the real villains, those who knowingly committed or covered-up the fraud.
Relying on the same anti-fraud law, the Financial Institutions
Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act, the U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles
is preparing to sue Mozilo and as many as 10 other former Countrywide
employees, according to two people with knowledge of the matter. The case may
be helped along by an imminent U.S. settlement with Bank of America Corp., which acquired Countrywide
in 2008. That resolution may come
as soon as today with Charlotte, North Carolina-based Bank of America expected to pay as much as
$17 billion and to acknowledge improper mortgage practices at Countrywide.(see
Wait….did they say “anti-fraud”? Anti-fraud? You
mean like the FRAUD homeowners have been screaming about for over 7-years
now? The same fraud that our legal
and regulation departments have told us is just a “civil-matter?” After all, if there is fraud, doesn’t
it stand to reason that someone has been defrauded? After all, with the litany of lawsuits and settlements going
after mortgage, foreclosure and modification fraud,
wouldn’t it be reasonable to assume that just a few homeowners, foreclosure
victims and modification victims have been defrauded?
…..But, I digress, we were talking about Angie-baby and possible
charges for his role in the subprime meltdown…over 7-years later. The public at large wants to see some
judicial equity to this subprime melt-down and Angie-baby would make a good
sacrificial lamb. As I mentioned
previously, he is over 75 years old and no longer crucial to the business…but
can someone explain this to me?
ProfileAngelo R. Mozilo Chief
Executive Officer, U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission Age 75-- Background
Mr. Angelo R. Mozilo serves as Chief Executive Officer of U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission.
Mr. Mozilo serves as a Treasurer of
National Italian American Foundation. Mr. Mozilo co-founded Countrywide
Financial Corp. in 1969 and served as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
He served as an Executive Chairman of Countrywide Financial Corp. since March
1999. Mr. Mozilo served as the President of Countrywide Financial Corp. since
March 2000 and Executive Vice President since March 1969. He served as the
President of Mortgage Bankers Association of America from 1991 to 1992. Mr.
Mozilo serves as Chairman of the Board of Countrywide Capital Markets, LLC. He
served as Chairman of Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., until July 2008 and also
served as its Vice Chairman. He served as an Executive Director of Countrywide
Financial Corp., since 1969. He served as a Director of The Home Depot, Inc.
from February 3, 2006 to May 24, 2007 and also served as its Member of IT
Advisory Council until May 24, 2007. He served as Director of Countrywide Home
Loans, Inc. until July 2008. He serves as Trustee of Gonzaga University. He
serves as Director of Mortgage Bankers Association of America and Harvard
Kennedy School Joint Center for Housing Studies and National Housing Endowment,
Homes for Working Families; and the Horatio Alger Society. He serves as a
Trustee of Fordham. He serves as Director of National Italian American Foundation.
Mr. Mozilo received awards by National Association of Home Builders' Hall of
Fame, Boy Scouts of America James E. West Fellowship Award, Ellis Island Medal
of Honor, which is held by all living U.S. President, Albert Schweitzer Award
for his work with the youth of America, National Italian American Foundation's
Special Achievement Award for Humanitarian Service, Lifetime Achievement Award
from American Banker in 2006 and Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished
Americans Award. In March 2005, Barron's listed he as one of the 30 most
respected Chief Executive Officers in the world. Mr. Mozilo received a Bachelor
of Science degree from Fordham University and holds an honorary Doctor of Laws
degree from Pepperdine University.
Please follow the footnote reference…I am not making this stuff
up…Angie-baby is listed as the CEO of the SEC and this is on the Businessweek
site. I’ve mentioned this for a
couple of years now and I have yet to have someone confirm or deny. Yes, I looked this up again today…it is
written as CURRENT!
No man is an island and Angelo Mozilo did not run a multi-billion
dollar company by himself. He had a
little help, like his 2nd in command, Stanford Kurland, who was the
CFO at Countrywide until fall of 2006.
It was Stanford Kurland who was cc’d on all those intercompany e-mails
that have been the subject of so much controversy over the past few years.
Angelo Mozilo 2005 Email: “In a discussion with
both Stan and Dave it came to my attention that the majority of pay options
being originated by us, both wholesale and retail, are based upon stated
income. There is also some evidence that the information that the
borrower is providing us relative to their income does not match up with IRS
Angelo Mozilo 2005 Email: “Since we know or can reliably
predict what’s going to happen in the next couple of years it is imperative
that we address the issue now.”
Let’s see….those e-mails are dated in 2005. Sounds to me, like they might have been
aware that there was a problem, I wonder if the risk was disclosed to their
customers…or their investors?
How is it that Stanford Kurland walked away with
almost clean hands? In a NY Times
article dated March 2009, Kurland is quoted as admitting he had a hand in
implementing the subprime loans:
“Mr. Kurland acknowledges
pushing Countrywide into the type of higher-risk loans that have since, in
large numbers, gone into default. But he said that he always insisted that the
loans go only to borrowers who could afford to repay them. He also said that
Countrywide’s riskiest lending took place after he left the company, in late
2006, after what he said was an internal conflict with Mr. Mozilo and other
executives, whom he blames for loosening loan standards.”
Stan, himself, is
probably wondering how he managed to walk away unscathed. In PennyMac’s SEC Prospectus filing Sanford
Kurland is listed as one of the company risks:
Publicity and media attention concerning litigation and
investigations involving Countrywide and certain of its former officers could
have an adverse impact on PennyMac and us.
There are several lawsuits pending against Countrywide and certain
of its former officers. Countrywide's former chief executive officer and two
other former executives (none of whom is affiliated with PennyMac or us) have
been charged in a civil suit by the SEC with securities fraud;
Countrywide's former chief executive officer has also been charged
by the SEC with insider trading.
Certain of the officers of PennyMac who are former employees of
Countrywide, including Stanford L. Kurland, our chairman and chief executive
officer, who was chief operating officer of Countrywide until September 2006,
have been named as defendants in lawsuits in which Countrywide and other
employees and former employees of Countrywide are defendants. Neither we nor
PennyMac nor any of our officers in their capacity as officers of PennyMac or
us are party to, nor do any such parties expect to become party in such
capacities to, any current or future litigation relating to Countrywide.
However, we cannot assure you that existing or future, if any, investigations
or litigation will not generate publicity or media attention or adversely
impact us or PCM's and PLS's ability to conduct their respective businesses.
Does Stan have some kind of unusual protection that is
undisclosed? Perhaps a strong
leader in Washington, like Tim Geithner? Perhaps this is why we see the blatant
abuse of the revolving door policy in Washington, DC and in our states. Here in California the former
Commissioner of the Department of Corporations, Preston DuFauchard is now a
trustee of PennyMac….can anyone
spell ‘conflict of interest’?
Seriously, they are STILL doing it (fraud) and they KNOW that they
are still doing it! In PennyMac’s
February SEC filing they included the following disclosures:
page 22: We may be subject to liability for potential violations
of predatory lending laws, which could adversely impact our results of
operations, financial condition and business.
a number of states, including California, Massachusetts and Washington, have
revised their foreclosure laws to require the suspension of a foreclosure
action until all of the loss mitigation options are exhausted. New state laws are also addressing "robo-signing"
concerns by creating new requirements to validate the evidence of the right to
foreclose and the accuracy of the foreclosure documents. We believe that additional
states will adopt similar requirements. (Page 107)
So as millions of Americans are pushed into foreclosure, some even
into homelessness due to the foreclosure crisis, the titans of this crisis
continue to rake in the big money profiting from their former fraud. Is there any wonder that the American
people are looking for prosecutions?
Yes, as one of those facing a future foreclosure I stand in awe as
I watch the wheels of injustice turning.
Not just in my own family’s situation, but with hundreds of families
around the country. Last May when
we marched on the streets of Washington, DC demanding justice and asking to see
Eric Holder, I heard heart-wrenching stories of fraudulent foreclosures. Some homeowners had never missed a
payment, some had been removed from their homes by SWAT teams. Others had lost their jobs for a few
months and just needed an opportunity to get back on track…yet they are marched
out onto the streets heartlessly as the creators of this massive fraudulent
crime spree are awarded millions of dollars in salaries and stock options.
Will the prosecution of Angie-baby be enough? I doubt it. I doubt it will even make a dent in the fraud master’s
lineup. One man cannot run a
corporation the size of Countrywide by himself….and let’s face it…there are so
many more, like Wells Fargo and CitiMortgage, and it has taken the cooperation
of more than one man to bring our nation to it’s knees….
July 9, 2013
The recent news about modification rigging has come as no surprise to those of us locked into this game.
Lost paperwork? Transferred loans? Duel-tracking? Not honoring the National Mortgage Settlement? Doesn't even raise an eyebrow for those of us who have lived it.
In fact, we wonder how it can really be a surprise to anyone! Believe me...and you can say you heard it here for the 100th time....we ain't finished yet!
Yet in the midst of this turmoil, I have heard from individuals I both admire and respect that there is a new and improved modification. Since I respect these people, I want to believe.
I want to believe.
Yet how many times do we need to have the rug yanked out from under us to figure out that we cannot trust the same people who brought us the fraud in the 1st place?
There are even testimonials from the beneficiaries of these "new and improved" modifications...and God Bless them. I am happy, as well you should be that these families have saved their homes. Yet I have also noticed that there has been a smattering of testimonials all along of a few select individuals getting modifications. After all, a few need to slip through the cracks to show "compliance."
But what about the rest of us? What about those of us who have been jerked around for the past few years?
Home Buyers can’t seem to get
any relief from the TBTF banks.
As noted in the recent
affidavits from Bank of America employees:
EXHIBIT 2: “Employees
were rewarded by meeting a quota of placing a specific number of accounts into
foreclosure, including accounts in which the borrower fulfilled a HAMP Trial
Period Plan. For example, a Collector who placed ten or more accounts into
foreclosure in a given month received a $500 bonus. Bank of America also gave
employees gift cards to retail stores like Target or Bed Bath and Beyond as
rewards for placing accounts into foreclosure.”
“In the most damning charge, the insider noted that, "It
may mean that any modification currently in process with BAC (Bank of America)
will not be recognized and the borrower will proceed into foreclosure."
This is almost certainly true, and it's a very common practice. Servicers who
purchase servicing rights are not obligated to follow through on prior
agreements with homeowners on loan modifications that have not yet been made
permanent. So the homeowner, who thought they were well on their way to saving
their home, instead has to start all over with a new servicer.”
These ‘whistleblowers’ have come
forth with what homebuyers have long known to be true. Our experiences weigh out their
words…the lenders have not been
dealing with us fairly.
From Whistle blower affidavit EXHIBIT 6:
"During my time at Bank of America, I saw records regarding hundreds of homeowners that Bank of America treated dishonestly. These homeowners were eligible for loan modifications under HAMP, sent back all the required documents and made all their required payments under a trial plan. Bank of America nevertheless damaged their credit ratings by reporting them delinquent, tacked on additional charges to their loans, increased the amounts it considered as being owed, and often referred these homeowners to foreclosure."
How many times do the lenders have to fool us for us to get the
message that they are not willing to work with us? Should we allow
these businesses to continue under the status quo when they have proven time
and time again that we do not matter as customers and they have ceased to treat us as their customers; we have
become nothing more to them than non-performing stocks?
Let’s move our money to the smaller
banks and credit unions that will value our business!
We are tired of having the ball moved
every time we get a little hope that this time the lenders really mean it.
As the recent whistleblowers
affidavits have demonstrated, these lenders only view us as chattel and not as
customers and certainly not as hard-working families.
How much has their abuse cost our
families and our society? It is
time to get serious about moving our money….or do we believe that they really,
really mean it this time, when they tell us they are trying to work with
In my office, I have a box of mailers promising to save my home even if I am in foreclosure. Yet if we go onto a government website they warn us against using these "modification experts".
Last year, a woman who receives $100 every time she tries to get help for a homebuyer promised me that she could stop our sale with a single phone call. I tried to tell her our lender was not willing to work with us, she assured me she was different. She wasn't.
In January of this year, I sat in on a UD hearing for a single mom who had her home foreclosed upon even though she had mailed in her signed modification paperwork along with her modification payment. She had thought her home had been saved and was sure that the writ of possession she found on her property was a mistake that crossed in the mail.
She was forced to go out and hire a lawyer to protect her home. At the hearing I witnessed the judge told the attorney's for the lender (B of A) that they needed to wait until this woman had her hearing in court the following month.
I listened to the B of A attorney's arrogance as they informed the client's attorney that they could remove the client's belongings and drop them any where she would like. They were even willing to have them delivered to the attorney's office.
In spite of the court order, this single mother's house was "trashed-out" that day while she was away from home, not even leaving her a change of clothing for work the following day.
Yes...she has a lawyer and a lawsuit pending, but how does she cope with day to day life until then? Seeing the inhumanity and lawlessness of these corporate lenders creates a unique kind of stress and depression it is difficult to explain.
All that to say -- I know my cynicism is leaking through -- and
for those who think that another phone call to their lender or outside
mediator will fix their loan, by all means, make the call and share your
results...but for the millions of us who have traveled this
road....a few time....let's just say we're a bit skeptical
May 10, 2013
FARGO – SHOW ME THE COMMITTMENT!
Hernandez – 5/8/2013
QUOTE FROM A WELLS FARGO
REPRESENTATIVE REGARDING THE PROTEST ACTION OF MAY 1ST:
“We understand they have a right to protest and we also
hope that they understand that our customers have a right to come into our
branch to do business. We are
hoping that they respect the right of our customers to come in and do
that. Wells Fargo is committed to
keeping borrowers in their homes.
We work toward that end with borrowers every day, since 2009 we’ve been
able to save numerous amount of borrowers, in fact we have written 841,000
modifications. And we have
provided 6.3 billion dollars to lower principle amounts, that’s with a “B”,
billion dollars of principle forgiveness.”
Words adapted from the
movie: My Fair Lady – “Show me” by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe
Words! Words! I'm so sick
I get words all day
First from them, now from
you! Is that all you blighters can do?
Don't talk of mods,
reductions in price; If you do right,
Show me! Tell me no
Filled with more lies.
Lowered principle price,
Show me! Here we are
together, in the middle of this blight!
You behind the line!
Telling us lies!
Everyone who’s been in a
liar loan will tell you that
is no time for a chat!
Haven't your lips
Longed for the truth?
Don't say how much,
Show me! Show me! Don't
talk of all the good you have done.
Make me no undying vow.
Show me NOW!
Like the song says – show us. Words are easy and we have had many years of words. Words are easy to say and statistics
are easy to make up. 90% of the
population knows that! (see what I
So where is that 6.3 billion dollars committed to lower
principles? Someone ought to tell
Eric Schneiderman, because he is planning on going after Wells Fargo and Bank
of America for violations of the 25 billion dollar national mortgage settlement
Perhaps Wells Fargo’s representative was referring to the
175 million paid out for predatory lending allegations. Or maybe the principle reductions he
was referring to have something to do with the bias lawsuit Wells Fargo settled
for $425,000,000, in Memphis and surrounding Shelby Country, TN.
In a recent article, Whistleblower: Wells Fargo fabricated mortgage documents
on a mass basis, It is cited that:
“Over the last two and a
half years, Wells Fargo, like most of the major mortgage servicers, claimed
that it had a “rigorous
system” to insure that mortgage documents
were accurate and complete. The reason this mattered was that there was
significant evidence to the contrary. Foreclosure
defense attorneys found repeatedly that, for securitized mortgages, the
servicer or foreclosure mill attorney would present documents to the court that
failed to show the borrower’s note (a promissory note)
had been transferred properly to the trust. This mattered not only on a
borrower level, but indicated that originators of the mortgage securitizations
hadn’t bothered transferring the notes properly to the trusts that were to hold
them. This raised the ugly specter of what was called “securitization fail,”
that investors had been sold securities that they had been told were mortgage backed
when they might in practice not be.”
Delassus heart hadn’t stopped while sitting in a court room fighting for the
home that Wells Fargo had foreclosed upon, we could have asked him about how
willing Wells Fargo was to work with borrowers.
“Delassus and his attorney did
not discover until May 2010 that a mis-entered number had dragged Delassus into
this spiral. As court documents obtained by L.A. Weekly
show, after admitting its error, Wells
Fargo foreclosed on Delassus anyway and sold his condo.”
According to the
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Wells Fargo was #2 of the most complained
about lenders. Bank of America
still first, (because they took over Countrywide (Who can do what no one else
can) Home loans) holding place at #1.
Rhue, a disabled woman who has lived in her home for over 9-years about how
hard Wells Fargo is working to keep her in her home. She had $175,000 in equity. Wells Fargo put her through the duo tracking modification
scam and brought her out the other side to foreclosure. While she is still currently in her
home, and the Independent Foreclosure Review Committee has sent her a check for
$2000 for wrongful foreclosure, Wells Fargo still refuses to do anything that
will help her stay in her home.
Where is the principle forgiveness for Ms. Rhue? Where is the “every effort to help her
stay in her home?”
Can we forget
about the Rosseau’s? A couple who
paid their mortgage with a cashier’s check that was lost by Wells Fargo
Bank. Wells Fargo foreclosed, the
couple offered to pay the penalties and charges (even though it was not their
error). Wells Fargo foreclosed
anyway. The husband committed
suicide. The suicide is
technically not Wells Fargo’s fault…but the foreclosure leading up to it…is.
Then later, we
have the eviction of a terminally ill woman, Niko Black, who, on the morning of
October 10th, had her door kicked open by the Orange County
Sheriff’s Department at the request of Wells Fargo in spite of a Federal Court
Order forbidding such action.
Ms. Black had to
drag herself to her wheel chair and the sheriff’s wheeled her out onto the
sidewalk, not even allowing her to go back in and get her much needed
paperwork was used to foreclose on her home. She did not even have a mortgage with Wells Fargo!
Then there is
Richard Castaldo, a young man who fought for his life 13 years ago at Columbine
High School. Occupy Fight
Foreclosure reached out to the CEO of Wells Fargo to negotiate a way to save
Richard’s home. The office of the
CEO told them that they would try to work something out, the next day they sold
Richard’s condo to an investor.
just one more…from May of last year – Patricia Martin, a 73 year old widow,
remember her, Wells Fargo? You
foreclosed on her home of 43 years because of a late charge of $104.23. Wells Fargo spent well over $50,000
booting her out of her home, when she wasn’t even late on her payment and
didn’t even ask for a modification.
Now what was it the Wells Fargo representative said again,
“Wells Fargo is committed to keeping borrowers in their homes.”
So, we’re thinking, Wells Fargo has another opportunity to
give life to their words, and work with Harolyn Rhue. Harolyn Rhue, a handicap woman who has been taken advantage
of due to an injury to her brain several years ago. She believed she was
signing for a 30-year fixed rate, but was given a teaser rate instead. Nevertheless, she did her best to make
payments on time, until she sought out a modification. On the advice of Wells Fargo, she
withheld payment while she awaited her modification. (Does this story sound familiar yet?)
NACA has already worked out a program that would keep
Harolyn Rhue in her home, but Wells Fargo refuses to budge. So our question is…Is Wells Fargo really
committed to keeping borrowers in their home?
talk of all the good you have done.
Make us no undying vow.
SHOW US NOW!”
April 18, 2013
by S. Hernandez
I got a phone call today from the electric company. Our bill was past due. There’s no excuse, really, I have money
in the account and I knew the bill was due. All I have to do is pick myself up, go to the office and
write the check…or pay it online! How
hard can that be? Instead, I found
myself running around last minute trying to get the payment in before they shut
I called a fellow homebuyer who
lives in Florida last week to talk about what we’re going through. I told him about my struggle
paying bills and doing ordinary things and he laughed. “I haven’t even opened my mail in
months. I put them in shoe boxes
and stack them in the corner.”
Another fraudclosure fighter in Massachusetts, an immigrant from
Bosnia, a friend of John O’Brien who is the Registrar of Deeds in
Massachusetts, talks about crying for days as she hears the horror stories from
around the nation. She has set out
to help homebuyers in their struggle to save their homes. She has witnessed firsthand the
brutality in other parts of the world and she immigrated here, to the United
States where she believed there was “freedom”. Now she is talking about the parallels of what she had gone
through in Bosnia.
In Oakland, California, a man who
has lost everything – is still hanging onto his home. He is a pro-active blogger about mortgage fraud. Once a professional business owner he
now wanders his house between blogs.
He hasn’t cut his hair or shaved in days. He wears his robe and hides out in the house. He is a respected businessman. His business, employees, and income are
all gone now as he stands at the forefront of invisible battle lines helping
other homebuyers who felt like they were alone.
A disabled woman who made her
modified payments on time for 3-years, was informed that she did not qualify
for the modification the bank gave her.
They are foreclosing and she hides when anyone knocks on her door.
Families have been forced from their homes illegally and the law has
not been there to defend them. In
fact, the law has either turned its head or permitted the abuse. Leaving families feeling distraught and
abandoned. They are abandoned by
the very law-enforcement that they though would protect them.
In the midst of our economic crash,
all around us, others are oblivious to the intensity of the battle.
We are the troops on the front
lines of the foreclosure tsunami, and many of us have been carrying this burden
for years. Now burdened and weary,
many suffer from a form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as we try to pull our
lives back together.
the Mayo Clinic Website, the systems of PSTD are listed as follows:
stress disorder symptoms are generally grouped into three types: intrusive
memories, avoidance and numbing, and increased anxiety or emotional arousal
of intrusive memories may include:
Flashbacks, or reliving the traumatic event for minutes
or even days at a time Upsetting dreams about the traumatic event
of avoidance and emotional numbing may include:
Trying to avoid thinking or talking about the traumatic
event Feeling emotionally numb Avoiding activities you once enjoyed Hopelessness about the future Memory problemsTrouble concentrating Difficulty maintaining close relationships
of anxiety and increased emotional arousal may include:
Irritability or anger Overwhelming guilt or shame Self-destructive behavior, such as drinking too much Trouble sleeping Being easily startled or frightened Hearing or seeing things that aren't there
The first time our home was
scheduled for auction, investors and realtors would stop outside on the street
and view our home. Often, they
would do a slow drive-by. We began
to recognize the signs and then we became a little paranoid. My husband will go outside and confront
them if they take too long lingering.
“We’re in a lawsuit,” he’ll say, “you won’t be getting this house.”
Yesterday, my grandson’s piano
teacher came to the door. My
husband opened the door as if in a rage.
Fortunately, he stopped himself before he said something he’d regret
later. You see, he thought it was
a realtor offering to sell our home in a short sale.
In August 2011, in an article in
the Wall Street Journal, S. Mitra Kalita tied health problems directly to
from the article: “The
threat of losing your home is stressful enough to make you ill, it stands to
reason. Now two economists have measured just how unhealthy the foreclosure
crisis has been in some of the hardest-hit areas of the U.S.
New research by Janet Currie of Princeton University and
Erdal Tekin of Georgia State University shows a direct correlation between
foreclosure rates and the health of residents in Arizona, California, Florida and
New Jersey. The economists concluded in a paper published this month by the
National Bureau of Economic Research that an increase of 100 foreclosures
corresponded to a 7.2% rise in emergency room visits and hospitalizations for
hypertension, and an 8.1% increase for diabetes, among people aged 20 to 49.”
emotions that emerge in the lives of the foreclosure victims are simply due to
losing their home. There is
something much deeper tied into the stress…it is the injustice that accompanies
the loss. As they watch their
homes slowly stolen from them, they struggle to stop the damage to no
avail. In addition they must also
deal with the image of being labeled a “deadbeat” while they watch the ones who
created the economic crash prospering and increasing their wealth and
Foreclosure victims often avoid the mail
because they do not know how to deal with the problems arising from their
foreclosure. They become numb and
despondent. They are aware of
their helplessness in the situation and for the first time they become aware
that no help is forthcoming. Many
simply give up in despair. Some
use avoidance techniques, such as drinking, drugs, overeating, playing video
games or staring at the television for hours on end.
Foreclosure victims often have trouble sleeping, they have
nightmares when they do sleep.
They begin to separate from family and friends because they cannot
explain what they are going through and they fear the judgments that come with
foreclosure. Their work suffers
because they cannot focus. They
avoid family functions and going out with friends.
In an article by Alison Linn,
titled: Foreclosure ripple effect; 8:3 million children in jeopardy,
Julia B. Isaacs, a senior
fellow with the Urban Institute and the author of the report, said a
foreclosure can hurt children in several ways.
When a school-age kid has
to move unexpectedly, it often means that they must switch schools mid-year.
Isaacs said other research has shown that kids who switch schools have lower
levels of math and reading achievement, even after controlling for other
factors such as poverty.
Such moves also are
associated with higher rates of kids dropping out of high school, and such a
big upheaval can be difficult socially for children.
The parents’ financial
stress also can impact the kids. Isaacs said research dating all the way back
to the Great Depression showed that when parents are under great financial
stress they might be less supportive parents. That, in turn, can lead to social
and behavior problems.
“This affects how parents
interact with each other and how they interact with their children,” she said.
significantly, it affects a child’s views on justice and their trust in
authority or law-enforcement figures.
It creates despondency in the system of government that would allow this
to happen and that creates disrespect for all authority.
For adults, the irritability
and anger comes from the frustration of helplessness in a corrupt system. It comes from seeking help on every
level only to be ignored, knowing that the laws are being broken and skewed for
the sake of the lenders who allowed and sometimes created this mess, then
blamed the victims.
increased and have been linked directly to the economic crisis and
It is in this state of stress and anxiety that the homebuyers who
choose to reach out find strength and encouragement from others in their same
situation. They find strength in
knowing that they are not alone and that there is someone who will listen.
In 2009, Senator Marcy Kaptur encourage homebuyers, “Do not leave
your homes!” Still the fraudulent
foreclosures continue as the news is inundated with articles on the crime,
while the victims of these crimes continue to loose their homes.
That is why organizations such
as Occupy, and its sub-committee, Occupy Fight Foreclosures (OFF) came into
existence. Homeowners struggling
to find help banded together and compared notes. The existence of OFF is a direct result of corruption and
lack of action by our leaders. OFF
seeks to bring to the forefront the truth about the fraud perpetuated on the
homebuyers and give them the strength and knowledge to fight back. OFF is comprised of people researching
the laws together, sharing information, and contacting our legislatures as a
group, giving them a greater visibility.
If you are in foreclosure, don’t let the depression overtake
you. Use that energy to learn how
to help others and stand up against the fraud. Find an organization near you that is fighting back and
You are not alone and you are not a deadbeat.
March 12, 2013
ABSENCE OF LAW
1933 Germany the Nazi party ‘temporarily’ suspended civil liberties. The first ones they put in the
concentration camps were the communists.
By 1935 the Jews were denied basic human rights, such as housing. They were taken from their homes and
moved to smaller ‘designated housing’ known as ghettos. This was just the beginning of the
atrocities perpetrated on a nation.
The rest is well-documented history.
quote from George Santayana: “Those
who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
in the United States of America, there have been almost 4 million foreclosures
since 2008. That is over 4 million
families that have been forced to start over again. The majority of families affected are minorities and young
families buying for the first time.
Foreclosures are not a new phenomenon and have been with us as long as
there has been lenders to lend, but not since the banking fraud that brought on
the great depression in the 1930’s has there been such a massive assault on the
February 2013, Bank of America sent movers into the home of Lucinda Excis*,
a single mother living in Lincoln Heights, while she was at work and removed all
of her furnishings. They did this
in spite of a court order forbidding them to do so until her case was heard
before the court. Lucinda called
the police when her daughter called her.
The bank representative showed the writ of possession to the police
officer and the police did nothing to stop the move. Lucinda, who was at work could not present her legal
paperwork to the police, and they would not call the court to verify. So Lucinda came home to a house that
had been “trashed-out”, all her goods and furnishing gone. She did not have a change of clothes,
her medications, toiletries…nothing.
 http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2010/10/fraud-caused-great-depression-and-this.html  * names
changed to protect their privacy
emotional toll cannot be documented in print. The helplessness that goes hand in hand with the fact that
even the police and the courts will not help. The sense of abandonment that she felt knowing that the
government she had been taught to believe was, “of the people, by the people
and for the people” had deserted her in her hour of need. She did not have a change of clothing
to wear to work the following day.
is not an isolated case. All over
the nation families are losing their homes to fraudulent foreclosures. Families are losing their homes as their
neighbors watch on apathetically; relieved it is not happening to them. Many have bought into the Wall Street
propaganda of the “deadbeat” homebuyer, in spite of the multitude of evidence
to the contrary.
is a list of just some of the
settlements with the large Wall Street banks that support the accusations of wrongdoing:
10/6/2008 – $8.68 billion dollar settlement with
Countrywide for the State of California 
8/3/2010 - $600 million dollar settlement with
Countrywide Financial with the New York City Pension Funds
10/15/2010 - $67.5 million settlement with the SEC
2/2/2011 – Former Countrywide executives make a $6.5
million settlement with California
6/29/2011 – B of A settles with 22 institutional
investors for 14 billion.
7/20/2011 – Countrywide settles a class action suit
for charging excessive fees to more than 450,000 borrowers.
12/21/2011 – Countrywide settles bias suit for $335
million dollars for discrimination
2/2012 – 48 state national settlement with 5 major
Wall-Street lenders for 25 billion dollars.
Most recently, in January 2013, there was a
settlement of 8.5 billion dollars to resolve the government expense of a
wrongful foreclosure review.
 State of
California – Press Release
 GMI Blog –
settlement with NY City Pensions Fund
Science Monitor – Mozillo settles..
settles with Countrywide execs.
 Countrywide to distribute
settlement to clients.
 Countrywide will settle
bias suit. (http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2011/12/21/144083080/bofas-countrywide-will-pay-335-million-in-lending-discrimination-case)
spite of these settlements, families such as Lucinda Exxis are being wrongfully
evicted from their homes.
a family is “trashed-out” from their home, the banks and investors have no
obligation to respect the fragility of the family furnishings or to follow-up
on what happens to the furnishing of the homebuyer. They hire a company to move the goods and often the families
valuables are missing when they are finally able to locate where the goods were
taken. There is no insurance, no
law, no recourse against this kind of theft, and there has been documentation
of homes being wrongfully trashed!
Nazi Germany, Jews were removed from their homes and put into ghetto
housing. They were removed from
their homes by soldiers who had once been their neighbors, their acquaintances,
people who they had worked with or gone to school with. A Nazi soldier was not allowed to
question the morality of his orders lest he become another one of the victims
of the Nazi regime.
the wake of history, we can see the shame and destruction of the Nazi regime
and the massive damage it left in it’s wake, but today we have created a new
victim – new homebuyers – and those not affected by the foreclosures turn a
blind eye to the massive fraud that is allowed to continue unabated. Former Nazi soldiers have given
testimonies of the atrocities that occurred under their watch, some felt
helpless as they recognized the wrong that they were required to carryout,
others felt entitled and superior to those who they ruled over and justified
their actions. Many former Nazi
leaders were executed for their crimes.
But did we learn from that history?
making money from the former fraud refuse to acknowledge the wrong and have
victimized those entrapped by the lure of owning a home as “deadbeats” who got
in over their heads. A statement
that is not objective in it’s nature as it corrals all foreclosure into one
category and total disregards the underwriting and fiduciary responsibilities
of the lenders and their legal teams.
Wall Street lenders were bailed-out by the United States Government over the
economic collapse, as a condition of the bail-out lenders were required to
modify the loans to the borrowers.
Congress was upset by the bailout and required that the government hire
a Special Inspector General to regulate the TARP funds (SIGTARP). Neil Barofsky was their man for the
job. In his recent book,
“Bailout”, Neil Barofsky outlines his experience as the head of the SIGTARP
light bulb went on for me.
Elizabeth (Warren) had been challenging Geithner on how the program was
going to help homeowners, and he had responded by citing how it would help the
banks. Geithner apparently looked
at HAMP as an aid to the banks, keeping the full flush of foreclosures from
hitting the financial system all at the same time. Though they could handle up to “10 million foreclosures”
over time, any more than that, or if the foreclosures were too concentrated,
and the losses that the banks might suffer on their first and second mortgages
could push them into insolvency, requiring yet another round of TARP
bailouts. So HAMP would “foam the
runway” by stretching out the foreclosures, giving banks more time to absorb
losses while the other parts of the bailout juiced bank profits that could then
fill the capital holes created by housing losses.”
 quote from
the book “Bailout” by Neil Barofsky
recently, in Februrary 2013, a recent study
confirmed that control fraud was endemic among our most elite financial
institutions: Asset Quality Misrepresentation by Financial Intermediaries:
Evidence from RMBS Market. Tomasz Piskorski, Amit Seru & James Witkin
(February 2013) ("PSW 2013").
a quote from the article, the authors stated:
one out of every ten loans has one of these misrepresentations. These
misrepresentations are not likely to be an artifact of matching error between
datasets that contain actual characteristics and those that are reported to
investors. At least part of this misrepresentation likely occurs within the
boundaries of the financial industry (i.e., not by borrowers).”
in the midst of this great wave of evidence of fraud on the part of the
financial institutes, families like Lucinda Exxis, and mine, are being
illegally removed from their homes, and the law continues to look the other
way, as the evidence suggests, because financial institutes have the money and
expertise to hire a lethargy of lawyers to bury the fraud.
the crux of this devastation I cannot help but wonder how history will view
this crisis years from now. Will
we repeat the austerity that has destroyed civilizations in the past, such as
the Nazi regime, or will we rise to the occasion once again as the greatest
nation on earth?
Nationstar Lending, inherited a foreclosed note from the bankrupt company of
Aurora Loans. The borrower on the
note was a 94-year old woman who had lived in her home for over 40 years. Hilda Vinalas was facing eviction from
her home and facing a court date to have her removed.
story was featured on a news report by CBS news in September 2012. In February of 2013, the CEO of
Nationstar contacted Hilda’s representative and called off the eviction. “We will not remove her from her home,”
he stated and in a 3-way conversation with his attorneys he called off the
actions of Nationstar Lending and similar actions where the lenders are willing
to work with integrity with the homebuyers could turn this crisis around. However, as we observe the actions of
the ones who created this crisis, it is doubtful that they will accept their
culpability in this crisis without any major prosecution.
I have also written a book "Beyond Passing," (see notation below). For this reason I wanted to read the story of the families of former slave holders coming together with the families of former slaves and trying to bring healing.
In the book, Coming to the Table, there is a reference to an incident in Marion where an unarmed young man was killed. He was shot at close range by a Marion Country police office for trying to protect his 82-year old grandfather and mother from being beaten.
Twenty-six-year-old Jimmie Lee Jackson, his
mother Viola Jackson, and his 82-year-old grandfather, Cager Lee, ran into
Mack's Café behind the church, pursued by Alabama State Troopers. Police
clubbed Cager Lee to the floor in the kitchen. The police continued to beat the
cowering octogenarian Lee, and when his daughter Viola attempted to pull the
police off, she was also beaten. When Jimmie Lee attempted to protect his
mother, one trooper threw him against a cigarette machine. A second trooper
shot Jimmie Lee twice in the abdomen.
Jimmie Lee Jackson died at Good Samaritan
Hospital in Selma,
on February 26, 1965. After his death, Sister Michael Anne, an administrator at
Good Samaritan, said there were powder burns on Mr. Jackson's abdomen,
indicating that he was shot at very close range.
So what is the significance of that incident today? There are several things that struck me in this story as it relates to what I see going on today.
Quoted from the book "Coming to the Table,":
Selma's black community mobilized around this event and called on civil rights leaders to lead a march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge from Selma to the capitol building in Montgomery to demand the right to vote.
A few days later, six hundred people gathered to march. On that first morning the county Sheriff ordered all white males in the entire country over the age of 21 to present themselves at the courthouse to deputized. When the marchers walked over the bridge, they were greeted on the other side by a wall of state troopers, who beat the peaceful marchers unmercifully.
It took three attempts for the marchers to finally reach Montgomery. 8000 people set off across the bridge it took five days to walk fifty miles. At night, then camped at farms along the highway owned by black farmers.
One of the authors of the book, an African-American woman, Sharon Morgan, relayed her feelings regarding the events of injustice in the South during the civil rights era.
"At some of these places, I get so totally pissed off. It's unfathomable. It took a judge ten days to rule that peaceful protesters shouldn't be attacked by police?!! Eighty-year-old people being beaten? A man killed for protecting his grandfather? And, after all that, I am amazed at how apathetic black people can be about voting. What the hell is that?!"
In a recent incident in Spain, the police took on a new position. And I wondered what would happen if we did learn from history. I wondered what would happen if we did take a stand against injustice.
I wondered if we could do this here!
Taken from an article at ZeroHedge 
Yesterday, in what is an appetizer to the great 2013 convergence trade (that, between the now thoroughly dead Greek and the Spanish economy, which is rapidly getting there, of course), several thousand Spanish policemen took the streets of Madrid protesting the latest round of austerity, which included frozen pensions and the elimination of the Christmas bonus (they will have many more opportunities to protest not only the loss of any future upside, but the eventual cut of existing wages and entitlements). As RT reports, protesters blew whistles, shouted slogans, and carried anti-austerity banners as they marched through the city centre to the interior ministry. But perhaps the most telling message read on one of the slogans, was the following: "Citizens! Forgive us for not arresting those truly responsible for this crisis: bankers and politicians."
And there you have the entire current clusterfuck summarized in one simple sentence: because as long as those responsible for the ongoing economic collapse, which will inevitably end in war as many have observed, Kyle Bass most recently, are not only not arrested but preserve their positions of power, any and all change will merely be cosmetic and any real change will only affect the bank accounts of the global middle class which are slowly but surely drained to zero.
It was a welcome
reprieve from the battle. I
remembered, for a moment, who I used to be.
I was helping Celeste try on
the costume we had made. We were
in the bedroom pulling her costume over the two pillows we were using for the
stuffing. It didn’t look right. She looked more like a giant bunch of
grapes that had lost 200 pounds and the excess flab was hanging around her
“That’s not going to work,”
She rolled her eyes, “I
look like a giant fat grape! I
could move the pillows to the side, let’s see if that works.”
Celeste had the idea for
this costume while she was planning costumes for her kids. Vic was planning a costume party for
her own birthday this year, which is near Halloween and she called her sister,
Celeste, and suggested that they combine the party with Celeste’s daughter, Belinda’s birthday, which was 5 days earlier.
“I know Vic and her
friends, they’ll all dress as something ‘sassy’ and I can’t even imagine what
I looked at my beautiful
daughter, who, at almost 40 years of age, still turned heads when she entered a
room. After having three children
she was heavier than she used to be, and like most women, her mind exaggerated
“I need something
different,” she stated flatly.
Belinda, who was ten, was going
as Catwoman. Dwayne, who was six
wanted to be Pikachu.
“I need something to ‘show off my lumps’” Celeste said as she switched to a cartoon
voice. “My lovely lady lumps!”
Belinda laughed. “Yeah, mom,” she said, “go as Lumpy
And so an idea was
born…Celeste would go as Lumpy Space Princess (LPS) from the cartoon, Adventure Time.
Lumpy Space Princess (LPS)
from the cartoon Adventure Time, was
an unexpected costume. But Celeste
had pulled it off and she made it work with the low voice and the song about
her “lovely lady lumps.”
So I made the costume and
we tried to fill it out with pillows.
We tied the pillows around her waist, the first time, but it didn't work too well, so she
suggested we move the pillows to the side. We tried scooting them over, but that didn’t work
either. I burst out in peels of
laughter, “Now you look like Quasimodo!” I laughed.
For the 1st time
in a long, long time, I laughed until I cried. Tears were flowing down my cheeks and we both could barely
Elise walked in on us and
took one look at her mother and fell on the floor in laughter. “You look like a fat grape, Mom!” she
gasped out between peels of laughter.
We laughed, as tears fell
from my eyes. My granddaughter
rolled on the floor holding her belly as she giggled. My daughter stood there in the costume we made, laughing out
loud just watching us.
We adjusted the pillows
again, “You can ‘house’ them here on the sides where the biggest lumps are.” I
said. It worked… she looked like
LSP, but she was hot in that costume and I didn’t think she’d make it through
“I’m already sweating!” she
complained, and we laughed again.
“You can drop the pillow’s
later” I said, “the felt will hold it’s shape without them”
“I might have to do that
later, but it’s more effective like this.”
She was the hit of the
small dinner party. The kids ran
around in their costumes chasing one another through the house. All the kids and parents immediately
knew that Celeste was the Lumpy Space Princess.
My other grandson announced it as soon as he saw her! “LSP! Oh my gosh!
Your LSP! That’s cool.” He showed her the stuffed toy LSP that
he had in the house.
Later, that same night,
Celeste started groaning as if in pain, using her LSP raspy voice, she mimicked,
“Oh, the pain, the pain, my lumps are hurting!” then she dropped the stuffed
LSP toy out from between her legs, “Oh, how’d that happen?” she laughed and we
all laughed with her.
“Mini me!” my other
daughter, Vic, yelled between gulps of laughter.
It was a great night. I had forgotten what it was like to be
The following day slammed
reality back in my face. We are a
long way from being normal. We
left normal behind six years ago.
Now we are crime fighters in a losing battle against corruption. We cannot sleep at night and we don't know if we will still be here tomorrow.
Even as I write this I battle the knots in my stomach...and I wonder how it could get this bad.
October 22, 2012
Today is a numb day.
Just shakin' my head in disbelief. Whoever thought this would happen? Whoever would have imagined it?
Our own government, we who go into other countries and demand human rights, we who fought facism in World War II, we who declare sanctions when human rights are abused. We are doing this in our own country with our own people.
October 21, 2012
FOR THE SAKE OF TEN.....
Genesis 18:32 Then he said, “May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found there?” He answered, “Forthesakeoften, I will not destroy it.”
Revelation 6: 3 When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” 4 Then another horse came out, a fiery red one. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make people kill each other. To him was given a large sword. 5 When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. 6 Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying, “Two pounds of wheat for a day’s wages, and six pounds of barley for a day’s wages, and do not damage the oil and the wine!”
From the very first day we realized we had gotten a bad loan we thought that the law would come to our rescue. We thought the lender would work with us, because we were good customers. We never imagined that this lawlessness, this perversion of the rule of law would be allowed to continue without repercussion.
Every time another lawsuit was settled because of lender fraud, I expected relief to come to the homebuyers. Every time someone printed some proof of the fraud I thought there would be restitution for those who were victimized by it.
Now, five years later, I see the lies continue and I see the compromise of our judicial system and legislative branch in favor of the corporations which are gaining in their stronghold on this once great nation.
So I pray....
I pray a version of the prayer of Abraham.
"Lord, if there are just 10 legislatures, 10 leaders, who will take a stand for what is right, who will not bow their knee to corporate corruption...will you save our nation for the sake of ten?"
FROM NEIL BAROFSKY'S BOOK: BAILOUT
I now realize, though, that Treasury's dismissal of our warnings has produced a valuable byproduct, the widespread anger that may contain the only hope for meaningful reform of our system. I know realize the American people SHOULD lose faith in their government. The SHOULD deplore the captured politicians and regulators who took their taxpayer dollars and distributed them to the banks without insisting that they be accountable for how the bailout money was spent. They SHOULD be revolted by a financial system that rewards failure and prtexts the fortunes of those who drove the system to the point of collapse and will undoubtedly DO SO AGAIN. They SHOULD be enraged by the broken promises to Main Street and the unending protection of Wall Street.
Because only with this appropriate and justified rage can we sow the seeds for the types of reform that will one day break our system free from the corrupting grasp of the megabanks. It is my own anger that compelled me to write this book, and I hope that in some small way it can help put us on that path.
Okay...I'm going to count him as "one".
SENATOR ELIZABETH WARREN
We need a housing policy that helps people stay in their homes,
prevents foreclosures, and helps those with underwater mortgages.
Elizabeth’s “all of the above” approach includes: principal write-downs,
refinancing options for homes that are underwater, cash for keys, and
While Scott Brown was an attorney for one of the most fraudulent
mortgage companies in the country, Elizabeth Warren was becoming the
most effective advocate against Wall Street consumer abuse in the
After an $850 billion bailout for Wall Street and another $25 billion
for the auto industry, struggling homeowners still await large-scale
government assistance. The Obama administration says it’s working out
the details of its plan to stem foreclosures. In the absence of
government action so far, some are taking action on the local level. In
Michigan, Wayne County Sheriff Warren Evans announced Monday he won’t
enforce sales of foreclosed homes. And in Ohio, Rep. Marcy Kaptur is
encouraging homeowners facing foreclosures to stay in their homes.
Meanwhile, the government-backed mortgage giant Fannie Mae has agreed to
restructure mortgages after a campaign led by one of its biggest
critics, the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America.
If only more of our police would realize that the real criminals are the banksters that have lost all contact with their own humanity!
The lenders could work this out if they wanted to, they could save thousands of families and still maintain their profits, in fact, they could have saved millions in legal fees, but instead they choose to foreclose on their neighbors and those less fortunate...simply because they haven't been brought to task for their fraud.
Below is an excerpt from the article:
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Occupy Atlanta. (Photo: T. Lynne Pixley / The New York Times) Atlanta police officers have formed an unlikely alliance with Occupy activists to save a former police detective and her four grandchildren from eviction.
Last November, riot police arrested 20 Occupy Atlanta activists during a clash at a park. Now, former and current Atlanta police officers are teaming up with Occupy Our Homes activists camped out at the home of retired police detective Jacqueline Barber, a former officer and cancer patient who is facing eviction after falling behind on medical and mortgage payments.
On Monday night, several police officers attended a meeting with activists at Barber's home south of Atlanta, and 20 or 30 former and current officers have spent time at the 24-hour Occupy camp there, according to activist Shabnam Bashiri. Occupy Our Homes activists hope support from local police could prevent an eviction.
Barber and several activists are committed to civil disobedience to defend the home, Bashiri said. An eviction could lead to an awkward clash between Barber, her former co-workers and law enforcement officers who carry out evictions.
Homer: Goodnight, you princes of Maine. You kings of New England. You warriors of a new era. You purveyors of truth. Goodnight to those entrusted to our new generation, may you teach them compassion as you stand against the onslaught of apathy.
October 19, 2012
HOW DEEP DOES THE RABBIT HOLE GO....
This must be what it was like to be Alice.....
(Artwork by Biz - distressed homebuyer)
Today I woke up with a knot in my stomach....again.
I wonder if I am still in the United States of America or if somehow I woke up several years ago in a parallel universe....Bizarro World.
What I didn't know when we signed on the dotted line for our mortgage, that along with our new home we would be given the red pill. I don't remember volunteering for that. I think I liked my blissful ignorance.
We don't deserve what is happening to us...and it makes me realize that no one deserves to be treated like this. Especially by the ones who created the mess in the first place. They should be apologizing to the American people...instead they are denigrating us, humiliating us and mocking us and their fraud continues.
Quote adapted from the movie,The Terminator:
Listen, and understand. That corporation's are out there.They can't be bargained with. They can't be reasoned with.They don't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And they absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead*
*(The Terminator by Eviscerator @ Deviant Art)
Finally, here is an excerpt from our homebuyer story:
On July 28th
, 2007, Countrywide sent us their “final” ruling on our request to waive the
prepayment penalty. They would NOT release us from the 3-year prepayment penalty,regardless of the fact they had the notarized 1-year prepayment addendum in their file.
I keep hoping I wake up in the United States of America I learned about in the history books...You know the one that is supposed to be "of the people, by the people and for the people", but each day I seem to wake up again...in Bizarro World.
There are some who will tell you it was always an illusion. I don't know if that's true, that is not how I remember it...but I will follow this to its conclusion and let you know....
Read my site about PennyMac attacks, and....
10/5/2012 - PennyMac is moving forward patterning itself after its Parent company....Countrywide.
Wall Street and consumer advocates, surprisingly, roll out the welcome mat.
PennyMac CEO Stanford Kurland, who spent most of career at Countrywide, is recreating his old firm. FORTUNE --The Federal Reserve's recent decision to buy mortgage bonds until the economy recovers has made home lending more attractive than it has been in years. The spread between what it costs to fund a mortgage loan and what borrowers actually pay is nearly three times as large as usual. So it's perhaps no surprise that one of the first firms to rush into this profit-filled fun house is headed by the former executives of the most notorious subprime lender of the era that led to the financial crisis. Last month, PennyMac (PMT), a finance company run almost entirely by alumni of Countrywide Financial, opened its first retail branch. The company expects to hire as many as 100 employees for the office, which is in Pasadena, California, including loan officers and underwriters. To head the office, PennyMac has tapped Stephen Brandt, who, according to a Congressional report released in July, ran Countrywide's "Friends of Angelo" program. The report found that Brandt's former unit handed out hundreds of sweetheart loans to members of Congress, their staffs and other government employees. One of the main thrusts of the division, according to the report, which was nicknamed after Countrywide's former CEO, Angelo Mozilo, was to soften anti-predatory lending laws. MORE: Card companies keep low rates for themselves "There's free money on the table and you don't have to work that hard to get it, especially if you are the former executives of Countrywide," says Michael Widner, an analyst who covers PennyMac at brokerage firm Stifel Nicolaus. "You've done this before." PennyMac has been around for a couple of years. But when it was started in 2008 by a dozen former executives of Countrywide, including Stanford Kurland, who was Countrywide's No. 2 executive before leaving in 2006, PennyMac's stated business plan was to buy up delinquent mortgage loans on the cheap, offer modifications and make some money in the process. In the past year, though, PennyMac has morphed into something that more resembles Countrywide. In recent investor presentations, Kurland and other PennyMac executives have talked up the company's unit that finances new mortgage loans made by outside brokers and small banks. The unit was launched a year ago, and now accounts for about a third of the company's profits. PennyMac has been more tight-lipped about its direct lending operation, which is still relatively small. A number of analysts who follow the company were unaware of it. PennyMac spokesman Kevin Chamberlain, and Countrywide alumni, says PennyMac's retail operation is focused on refinancing delinquent borrowers whose mortgages have been acquired by PennyMac into affordable loans. He says the Pasadena office is not for walk-ins. Chamberlain says the firm has no plans to make subprime loans. MORE: The housing pick up won't produce much economic growth What's more, Chamberlain says direct lending is not a part of PennyMac's investor presentations because the division is part of the company's private operations, not its publicly traded company. On Brandt, Chamberlain says the executive oversaw 700 to 800 employees at Countrywide, including "one to three employees whose partial responsibility was to take loans for the VIP unit." PennyMac, though, doesn't seem to be hiding its lending operations from potential customers. The company is using direct mail to solicit customers. The company's website advertises new home loans with rates as low as 3.5%, and has an 800-number to call. The person who answers says he works for PennyMac. PennyMac's odd corporate structure has worried some Wall Street analysts. PennyMac runs a public mortgage REIT, but not all of the company's business and profits go to the REIT. For instance, PennyMac's mortgage REIT is not approved to sell loans to Ginnie Mae, which is the government entity that backs FHA loans. So when PennyMac finances those loans - $1.6 billion in July and August alone - the public REIT passes them along to a private division of the company, which is owned and operated by PennyMac's executives and its two outside investors, asset manager Blackrock and private equity firm Highfields Capital. The REIT makes a small fee, just 0.03%, on those deals and the private entity pockets the rest, which is the bulk of the profits. "Kurland definitely has aspirations to grow the company into something that is substantial and in the end will probably look something like Countrywide," says Widner, who rates PennyMac a hold. "But with the stock what you are getting is a subdivision of the company." MORE: Young workers earn $10,000 less than in 2005 To meet those aspirations, Kurland has recruited many of the same executives who helped him build Countrywide into a mortgage behemoth. Of the 313 PennyMac executives who are listed on professional networking site LinkedIn, 75 had spent some time at Countrywide. Along with Kurland, PennyMac's chief operating officer, chief financial officer and chief credit officer all hail from Countrywide, as do the firm's head of marketing, head of consumer lending and head of human resources. So far it appears to be working. PennyMac has funded over $9 billion in mortgages this year, up from less than $1 billion in 2011. Executives say they hope to be on pace to finance $30 billion in mortgage loans next year. That would make the PennyMac the 12th largest mortgage lender in the country, according to trade publication Inside Mortgage Finance. Still, that would be a fraction of what Countrywide was, which at its height financed about $500 billion in home loans a year, and regularly ranked as the nation's largest mortgage lender. A recent analysis by the Wall Street Journal found that Countrywide has cost Bank of America, which acquired the giant mortgage lender in 2008, nearly $40 billion in additional costs since the deal was completed, much of it due to subprime and other high-risk loans that Countrywide made at the height of the housing bubble that have since gone bad. In December, Bank of America agreed to pay $335 million to settle charges that Countrywide loan officers regularly charged minority borrowers higher rates and fees than those paid by similar white borrowers. In the past year, a number of former Countrywide employees have come forward to say they tried to warn regulators about abusive or lax lending practices at the firm but were either silenced by their superiors, or fired. None of the executives at PennyMac are directly linked to any of the alleged wrongdoing at Countrywide. Unlike Mozilo and other high-ranking Countrywide executives, Kurland was not charged with fraud by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Kurland has been sued by former shareholders of Countrywide, but PennyMac spokesman Chamberlain says Kurland left Countrywide before much of the practices alleged in the suits occurred. Either way, PennyMac's current investors don't seem to be bothered by Kurland and his team's past, or by the company's complicated structure. Shares of the REIT have risen nearly 50% in the past year. It doesn't hurt that PennyMac has a 9.3% dividend yield at a time when investment income is hard to come by. More surprising is the reaction PennyMac gets from consumer advocates. John Taylor, who heads the National Community Reinvestment Coalition and has been a frequent critic of subprime lenders, welcomes the firm. He says mortgage rates have stayed frustratingly high, and that there is a huge number of borrowers who are still having trouble refinancing. Taylor thinks PennyMac and firms like it could help. "These are not the type of people I want to have over my house for dinner," says Taylor. "But competition is good."
TO FRAUD OR NOT TO FRAUD...that is the question (8/6/2012)
Does anyone remember Crazy Eddie of the 80's fame? He had an electronic shop in downtown Los Angeles. I remember him because I walked passed his shop often on my was to visit other vendors.
I often wondered how he did such a boom business. It was an ordinary shop like so many other electronic shops in Los Angeles.
It explained a lot. Now I know why Crazy Eddie did so well among the dozens of electronic shops in downtown Los Angeles. Now we know how these companies end up making so much money...they have no motivation to stop and prison does not scare them.
Crazy Eddie will tell you how fraud works, if you are interested. Just click on his website below. He will tell you what he did that got him prison time.
As I see what is happening in our country today, I think of a line from the movie The Green Mile:
John Coffey: "He kill them wi' their love. Wi' their love fo' each other. That's how it is, every day, all over the world."
Only it's our hope that they are killing us with now. We keep hoping things will get better. We hope we are wrong about how evil it is getting. We hope that it won't effect us and things will get back to normal soon....whatever that is.
On Tuesday, July 17th, a group from Occupy Fight Foreclosures in Los Angeles met to attend the meeting of the County Board of Supervisors in hopes of addressing our hopes of getting a moratorium on foreclosures until the Homeowners Bill of Rights goes into effect.
Within the group were less than a handful of homebuyers who wanted their grievances heard.
The meeting started with a clown, yes, I mean a literal clown, who dressed up to accuse the Board of Supervisors of being ineffective. He was an angry man who rambled through his 3-minutes jumping from one subject to another and redirecting back to his perceived ineptness of the Supervisors.
There were several agendas discussed at the meeting and those of us who wanted to address issues not on the regular agenda had to wait until the end, where customarily we would be given 3-minutes to address our concerns. However, on Tuesday, July 17th, the committee made a motion to reduce our time to one-minute each.
A group of over 50 people were there to request that the money appropriated for building new prisons, instead be used for programs to help educate youth and get them into positive programs prior to becoming inmates in the prison facilities.
At long last, it was time for one from our group to go forward and address her grievances. Her name was Maricella, she had five children and a 92 year old grandmother living with her. Her home was being foreclosed upon and she was asking for help. She was asking for an opportunity to save her home.
She did not speak English well, so she had an interpreter there to interpret her remarks. She wanted to save her home, she wanted a modification, no one was listening to her and she needed help.
The interpreter translated with an inflection in his tone that revealed his opinion that he thought this woman was less than worthy. It was somewhere within that moment and the ones that followed that I felt the imposition of hopelessness and distress that has been inflected on the homebuyers in our country.
Maricella was dressed humbly in jeans and a t-shirt, she brought her five children with her. It was not difficult to decipher the opinion of the panel sitting with the board and they glanced impatiently around.
Gloria Molina, supervisor for the 1st district spoke to the woman impatiently, in Spanish, “Who told you to come here?” she demanded.
“I am with the Occupy movement,” Maricella looked back for support.
I was sitting next to Carlos Marroquin who is heading up the Occupy Fight Foreclosure action committee in Los Angeles. He is a hard working man with a genuine compassion for people. He has lost his own home to foreclosure and is determined to help others save theirs. He leaned over and whispered to me what was being said. “Gloria Molina is not being very nice to this woman,” he said in hushed tones, “She is talking down to her.”
For the past 5 years I have seen the injustice of the propaganda perpetuated by Wall Street, “The homebuyers got in over their heads, they got greedy”. Then this myth is further exacerbated by the damage it causes. A woman, a mother, a hard-worker, who believed that the lender was helping her to purchase a home, not setting her up to fail, begins to bend under the burden, she is offered a modification, and she sees hope only to be lured into foreclosure by the lenders that are still profiting from their fraud and because of their past reputations of trust and compliance. The lenders are still able to convince an uninformed public that the homebuyer is responsible for this mess.
This propaganda might even work when someone like Maricella, who cannot communicate in their language, stands before the Country Supervisors, struggling for the words to express her outrage and discouragement…but after Maricella came others, dressed in suits and ties, dressed like business personnel, asking for a moratorium on foreclosures, outlining the fraud by the lenders. Some had homes in distress, others did not, but all asked for a moratorium and were well-informed in their brief redress.
As we began to leave the auditorium of the Board meeting, a liaison for Gloria Molina came down the aisle and asked to speak to us. She told us Gloria wanted to set up a meeting with Maricella to see what she could do to help her. She sent her down to the Department of Consumer Affairs to make an appointment for counseling.
Too many homebuyers are suffering in silence, like Maricella, they are afraid they will not be heard, and alone, they may not be, but if we stand together, we can make a difference, we can change the conversation from “deadbeat homebuyers” to “Wall Street fraud”. We can change the course of history, or we can sit idly back until the thief comes to our door in the form of more lost equity in our homes or lost pension earnings as the lenders who are guilty of the fraud continue to grow richer.
At sixteen, Elaine was presented with the idea that there might be more to her identity then she had been raised to believe. Beyond Passing is the exploration of that idea and its significance in her life, and the lives of her family. Told from the prospective of three generations, Beyond Passing deals with the emotional impact that the discovery had on her family and the proceeding generations.
This book appeals to the secrets that all families keep hidden in their closets. It appeals to those who wish for a better understanding of the rationale behind racial and ethnic differences and the pain that stereotyping leaves in its wake.
With its central topic relevant to today’s times, Beyond Passing is a call to cherish one’s racial heritage and embrace the blending pot that has become the American theme. This book is available in trade paperback, trade hardback, and eBook formats. For more information, interested parties may log on to www.Xlibris.com.
About the Author Elaine Galindo, a Los Angeles native, was a clothing designer for many years working for Lily’s Fashions, which carried the brand of Lily’s Fashions and Elaine Galindo Designs. She retired shortly after the unexpected death of her mother in 2006.
Elaine Galindo is the eldest of four children. Raised in the suburbs of Southern California by a family who prided themselves in a rich history dating back to the Mayflower and the first settlers in America. She discovered, in her late adolescence that there was a side of her family history that she had known nothing about.
After the death of her mother, and armed with a secret that needed telling, she set out to tell the story that touches so many lives in the world today. “Our character is not defined by the heritage we have received, but rather by the legacy we leave behind.”
Elaine now lives with her husband in Southern California, near the area where she grew up. Together they have three grown children.
Beyond Passing * by Elaine Galindo
Available at: Amazon.com Barnes and Noble.com Xlibris.com