Archive for February, 2011

Is A “Strategic Default” Of A Mortgage Now A Moral Imperative? (February 28, 2011)

Posted in Bailout/Bribe, Banks and Banking System, Courts, Crime/Punishment, Economics, Housing, Kleptocracy, Law, Society, Supreme Court, TARP on February 28, 2011 by

. . .

S          “You have heard of them.  A ‘strategic default’ is a default by a person who could make the monthly payments on the mortgage yet elects to cease making the payments because the property is underwater financially.”

D          “There are a flood of them today.”

S          “A strategic default may be de rigueur today.  Look at the law.  Start with the indoctrination process in law school.  Young law students are taught the theory of ‘efficient breach’ which counsels one to breach a contract if breaching the contract is worth more than performing the contract.  That is defined as ‘efficiency.’  The students who answer obediently get on the law review, clerk for the Supreme Court and make millions representing banks, big businesses and insurance companies.”

D          “And assist in running them into the ground.”

S          “That’s the plan.  They don’t even understand ‘efficiency.’  In practice, the party breaching the contract is not spawning a more efficient use of global resources.  The breaching party simply does not want to pay or perform and usually has far more money and can overwhelm the non-breaching party in court.  The party not receiving payment or performance loses big and usually has little judicial relief.”

D          “With a few exceptions, the legal system seems to exist to protect and serve the interests of the wealthy and the well-connected. I’ll take my direction from no one other than the MBAs at the MBA (Mortgage Bankers Association) who recommend defaulting on your mortgage if it is not working for you.  The banksters decided not to pay the mortgage on the MBA office building in D.C. (Washington, D.C.), even though the group had the funds to pay.  The banksters strategically defaulted.”

S          “They are indeed an example for all.  When the government bribed and bailed out the banks and other institutions, some contended that the government could not breach the contracts providing for unwarranted and illegal bonuses.  How un-American.  The government should have disregarded every contract and required the banksters to bring suit.  How American.”

D          “Allowing the banksters to file suit would allow them to file in a sympathetic Republican Federal District Court and possibly steer the case to a receptive judge.”

S          “Always a risk in the legal game.  However, before the banksters brought suit, their legion of lawyers would remind them that they could confront defenses and counterclaims.  In court, the government could assert a dozen affirmative defenses and also counterclaim for fraud, deceit, perjury, conspiracy, embezzlement, racketeering, misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, obstruction of justice, etc.  Some of the banksters would not file suit which is the least expensive and, yes, the most efficient way of reaching a just resolution.”

D          “Seems that the courts are stacked against the public.  Nonetheless, there is a small chance that an independent judge might hear some of the cases and hold that the bonuses are illegal.  An affirmative award against the banksters is improbable but not impossible.”

S          “Neither the Republicans nor the Democrats ever intended to bring criminal charges against the criminals.  We seem at times to be alone in a lawless world with millions of laws on the books.  We in America have moved from a democracy to a kleptocracy.”

D          “And no one to throw the book at them.  Except that the law and morality are clear.  Homeowners are morally obligated to default on the payment of their mortgages if the property is underwater financially.  The government is morally obligated to default on the payment of the bankster’s bonuses.  In today’s amoral America, a strategic default is both an economic necessity and a moral imperative.”

S          “Perhaps a provision should be added to Title 18 of the United States Code making it a crime not to strategically default if the property is underwater financially.  Not to strategically default is so un-American.  And inefficient.  We just can’t have that.”

D          “Strategically defaulting immanentizes the eschaton.”

S          “Indeed.”

. . .

Mortgage Bankers Association Defaults:

Home Sales Data Is Overstated:

“Three years after a horrific financial crisis caused by massive fraud, not a single financial executive has gone to jail, and that’s wrong.”  Charles Ferguson upon receiving the Oscar along with Audrey Marrs for the Best Documentary for the movie “Inside Job.”

“Almost everyone counted publicly each and every single day of the event known as the ‘Iran hostage crisis,’ yet no one is counting publicly the days that have passed since September 15, 2008 without a single major criminal indictment of the banksters and their ilk who caused the financial crisis that continues to plague this country today.”

[See the “e-ssay” titled “1000 AUSAs (February 9, 2009).”]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Do as I do not as I say

Mortgage Bankers Association: Strategically Default Today

Free $1000 an hour legal advice:  Strategically Default On Your Mortgage Today

Efficiency uber alles

Efficiency is Inefficient

If your property is underwater, should you plant seaweed in the front yard this spring?

On Magazines (February 21, 2011)

Posted in Government Regulation, Guns, Society on February 21, 2011 by

. . .

GO1     “As I recall, someone commented that you earned the Marksman, Marksman First Class, Pro-Marksman and the First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Ninth bars of the Sharpshooter Award awarded by the NRA?”

GO2    “And the Expert Award, for good measure.”

GO1     “And the Marksman, Sharpshooter and Expert Awards of the Junior Small Bore Competition of the National Board For The Promotion Of Rifle Practice of the Civilian Marksmanship Program?”

GO2    “Exactly.  Why not?  And shot passably at a few competitions.  You competed?”

GO1     “They were there.  Seemed like another thing to pursue.  I never recycled the Basic Rifle Marksmanship manual, the Junior Rifle Handbook, and the Biathlon book written by Arthur Stegen and many of the other NRA (National Rifle Association) publications.”

GO2    “Moved too many times.  The medals and other stuff may surface some day.”

GO1     “Remember during a competition that every event seemed to turn on one shot.  One miss and likely you are out of it.  That is often true in life.  On Opening Day one year, the Jam-O-Matic was true to form and jammed after one shot.  I never riveted a rosary to the gun.  It dutifully jammed without fail.  The other guys could unload three shots.  I noticed something.”

GO2    “The bird count.”

GO1     “Exactly.  That’s what counts.  I kept count.  They may be more skilled with a shotgun if they concentrate, own more precise shotguns and can throw thrice the steel.”

GO2    “There is nothing like field research in the field.”

GO1     “I only had one shot.  That got me thinking.  If one is better than three, then fifteen is better than thirty-three.”

GO2    “Curious math.  I’m not sure.  The ducks in the field don’t have guns.  Some of the ducks with guns are not ducky.”

GO1     “I once rapid-fired a fifteen round magazine of 9 millimeter rounds at a target.  It was too easy and effortless.  A magazine that carries more than fifteen rounds in a pistol is unnecessary and dangerous.”

GO2    “In a defensive situation, you usually get three shots in three seconds in less than three meters before it is over.  I don’t see a need for thirty-three shots, yet there a few times when a person gets involved in a sustained fire fight.  Changing magazines is clumsy and dangerous.”

GO1     “How often?  Police may need larger magazines, but not ordinary civilians.  A handheld Gatling gun seems likely only to kill offensively.”

. . .

See and

Bumper stickers of the week:

Not the printed kind

Citizens deserve guns; Psychos do not.

Wisconsin – America’s Tunisia?

The Junior Program of the National Rifle Association has been developed to bring out those qualities of sportsmanship, fair play, manliness, self-control and cooperation so essential to success in life.  . . . .  Forward, Junior Rifle Handbook © 1960 National Rifle Association.

The Bush Grand Slam (February 14, 2011)

Posted in Afghanistan, Bernanke, Bush, CIA, Civil Rights/Civil Liberties, FBI, Federal Reserve, Iraq, Military on February 14, 2011 by

. . .

1          “Quite an inspiring legacy.  The Bush appointees.  At least the prominent ones who are still serving.  Bernanke*, Mullen, Mueller and Gates.”

2          “Sounds like a trusts and estates boutique law firm.”

1          “By law, some major political appointees remain in office through the start of a subsequent administration.  The first three appointees continued serving at the start of the O’Bama administration.  O’Bama retained Robert Gates as Secretary of Defense and re-appointed Ben Bernanke* as Chairman of the Federal Reserve.”

2          “He really blew it in his early years with the Fed, yet Bernanke* may be the best that America can produce.  We need Bernanke to channel his inner Volker.”

1          “Bernanke is the pivotal player.  Gates swore an oath that included providing for the ‘common defense.’  His performance is exemplary and an example for all.  Ike, a Republican and former general to boot, was remarkably courageous in his last days in office when he warned us in no uncertain terms about the power of the military-industrial complex.  So much money that should be used for our common defense or other purposes is squandered on projects and programs that are unnecessary.  Gates is still challenging wasteful and duplicative spending.”

2          “Perhaps Gates could take off for a week to go bass fishing and then return to duty.  He has the stroke to get it done, but he may want to get out before he has a stroke.”

1          “You’ve got to have the fire to stay in the game.  Look at the record.  When the National Security Act of 1947 transformed the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) into the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), there was concern to avoid the secret Gestapo police that had terrorized Europe and the world a few years earlier.  After 9/11, the barriers between international intelligence gathering and domestic police activities were eliminated.  Without institutional barriers, we rely on individual restraint.  As Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Robert Mueller has provided balance and prosecuted the task with integrity and an abiding concern for the Constitution.”

2          “Another former Marine making it.”

1          “And Mike Mullen as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has been a steady hand on the tiller.”

2          “Tough task.  The military is engaged in two wars that America cannot win and cannot lose.  America cannot afford to pursue them and cannot afford not to pursue them.”

1          “And a calm head implementing the transition from DADT (Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell) to a military culture that allows everyone a chance to serve and die without living a lie.”

2          “You know that he could have opted to go into the Marines after the Academy?”

. . .

[See the “e-ssay” titled “V Day (February 14, 2005).”]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Much is well that ends well

Fidelity, Bravery and Integrity

I Am A Republican (February 7, 2011)

Posted in On [Traits/Characteristics], Pogo Plight, Political Parties, Society, Sports on February 7, 2011 by

I received Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) when I was a youngster.

I received subsidized lunches while in grammar school.

I received municipal funding at the trade high school.

I received state-subsidized scholarships to attend college including free books.

I received a regular government pay check, socialized medicine and free quarters while in the service.

I received Medicaid to aid with the delivery of my child.

I received time away from work under the Family and Medical Leave Act to be with my young child.

I received a prompt and free response from the fire department when my kitchen caught fire.

I received unemployment insurance payments when I was laid off.

I received and still receive the mortgage interest deduction for the monthly mortgage interest payments for my house.

I received energy tax credits for improvements to my house.

I received a great sense of relief when my daughter and her young son started receiving Women, Infants and Children (WIC) welfare assistance.

I received a healthy inheritance tax-free from my uncle who received government farm subsidies all his life.

I received the yearly statement in November projecting my social security payments when I retire.

I did it all by myself.

I am a self-made man.

I am a Republican.

Bumper stickers of the week:

Get real (or unreal)

Hypocrisy Is Just One Of The Things I Espouse

What if as many citizens who watched the Super Bowl also watched one episode of Frontline?