May 20, 2011

Foreclosuregate E-mail Draft

Filed under: Civil Disobedience, Land Reform — Tags: — Russ @ 5:10 am
Although I’ve written extensively about the Land Scandal, up till now I haven’t had the occasion to tell someone I know personally about it. But just last night I learned that a friend is facing foreclosure. I don’t know anything about her situation – whether she was trying to get a mod, whether she’s been the victim of servicer abuses, etc. I have no idea if she knows anything about Foreclosuregate. So I figured I’d drop her a line with a brief rundown, just in case it could be worthwhile to her to know about it and maybe look into whether or not it could help her situation. But I haven’t written about this for novices before, so I figured I’d throw a draft out there and ask what people think of it. Is it a clear enough introduction? Too many links? Does anyone know of better introductory links? (I’ve been lax in keeping my archive orderly, so by now I have >200 Land Scandal links, and I don’t recall which were the best ones. I just selected a few I do remember as being clear to me.)
This is perhaps a worthwhile exercise for all of us, as we should all be ready to be educators on this subject, at least being able to steer others in the right direction.
So here’s the draft. I left out the personal details which will go into the customized version:
I’m writing just to toss something out there. I don’t know if it would interest you or not, but it’s something I’ve read a lot about. Have you heard about the legal problems the banks are having with the foreclosure process? Namely, in their convoluted process of bundling together millions of mortgages to create mortgage-backed securities (MBS), the banks systematically flouted the strict requirements of age-old real estate law where it comes to such basics as keeping the note and lien together, properly recording every change of owner the note goes through, and so on.
Especially where it comes to any mortgage written over the last 10-12 years, and especially those which have anything to do with a registry called MERS (Mortgage Electronic Registry Systems), it’s possible that in the case of any foreclosure, the foreclosing entity may not in fact have legal standing to foreclose. In addition, most foreclosures which are looked at by a knowledgeable attorney display forgery and fraud in the bank documents, for example the illicit use of so-called “robo-signers”, which are servicer employees who fraudulently sign vast numbers of “lost-note affidavits”, in each case illegally claiming personal knowledge of the previous disposition of a now allegedly lost note. (Why the notes weren’t properly conveyed in the first place is another story.)
Many foreclosure victims who have demanded that the foreclosing entity produce the note in order to prove that it has the legal standing to foreclose have been able to delay the proceedings, often indefinitely, as it’s discovered that the alleged owner of the loan cannot prove this ownership, where the note has disappeared and the documents the bank provides to vouch for its ownership of this lost note are riddled with irregularities.
This has been written about extensively in the blogosphere, and has gotten some coverage even in the corporate media. Here’s just a few pieces which have been written on the subject. The blog Naked Capitalism has most extensively documented the whole saga, but the corporate NYT has also written about it.
http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2011/03/many-foreclosures-in-oregon-halted-due-to-decisions-against-mers.html (This is just one example from one state among many similar examples.)
Specific to NJ, last winter a state supreme court justice ordered a review of all foreclosures in the state by the main entities: OneWest; Ally Financial, formerly GMAC; BAC Home Loan Servicing, a subsidiary of Bank of America; JP Morgan Chase’s Chase Home Finance; Wells Fargo Financial New Jersey and CitiResidential Living, a subsidiary of Citibank.
If their answers to the inquiry Rabner set in motion had been insufficient, the court might have imposed a statewide foreclosure moratorium. So far, however, the banks have been succeeding in derailing this inquiry by getting postponement after postponement. Here’s the most recent development, so far as I can see:
I don’t know anything about your situation, whether or not you feel victimized by servicer abuses, whether a modification could help you, and so on. And if these are true, I also don’t know if you’d have any interest in looking into this stuff and maybe trying to act upon it. But the fact is that homeowners facing foreclosure  who have fought back demanding that the foreclosing entity produce the note have often succeeded in delaying the foreclosure for an indefinite period. Often this tactic convinces the bank to work with them on a modification (which is generally more in the ostensible note-holder’s interest than foreclosing; only the perverse incentives of the way the system is currently set up gives the servicer an incentive to foreclose even though that’s against the interests of everyone else involved). Here’s one example of that:
Well, I don’t know if any of this is relevant to your situation, but I thought I’d let you know about it in case you hadn’t heard of it before. Some people do force the banks to give them mods by gumming up the works with demands to see the proper documentation, demands the banks often cannot meet. So that’s why I sent you this, for whatever it’s worth. I’m no practical expert on it, but here’s some sites to learn more.


  1. I don’t know anything about your friend or your relationship with them, but this email would be pretty helpful. I think you could probably drop some of the more technical blog links in favour of, say, the 60 minutes foreclosure fraud report or something like that, though. Also, the Gonzalo Lira link goes to the comments section, so that’s a bit confusing.

    Comment by paper mac — May 20, 2011 @ 2:23 pm

    • That’s a good idea about 60 Minutes as an intro for a novice. Is that piece good? I didn’t watch it myself. I vaguely recall Yves saying it was pretty good for an MSM piece.

      Point of view is funny like this – I didn’t consider those links to be particularly technical, but you may be right, if someone’s never heard of this before.

      Comment by Russ — May 20, 2011 @ 3:04 pm

      • Good stuff, Russ. I agree with paper mac that for a novice it might be better to skip the more technical links and use the 60 minutes piece (or something like that) as an intro. The only problem is that I don’t own a TV and didn’t see it either, but I also remember Yves saying it was pretty good for MSM.

        In other news, it’s encouraging to see that the protest in Spain seems to be gathering strength. I don’t know if this is being reported in the US media, but the French newspaper Liberation is reporting that protestors have occupied the La Puerta del Sol in Madrid (Spain’s leading financial district) and they’re staying there day and night a day in order to protest against corrupt politicians and bankers.

        Here are some pictures of the protest:


        Comment by Frank Lavarre — May 20, 2011 @ 3:25 pm

      • Thanks, Frank. I made that change in the e-mail draft.

        I only heard about the Iberian protests in passing. I haven’t had time to check them out yet, but they sound pretty good. (I read a good comment about them as NC.)

        Comment by Russ — May 20, 2011 @ 4:24 pm

  2. Voila …


    1. THE PROBLEM …

    • The mortgage recording system in America has been intentionally poisoned as an integral part in the creation of a willfully and knowingly created global financial crisis!


    • Every American; renter, property owner with no mortgage, property owner with a mortgage, property owner currently in foreclosure, is affected by this facet of the intentionally created financial crisis.


    • The intentional financial crisis was purposefully created by; deregulating the parasitic financial industry, having the Federal Reserve intentionally lower credit rates to create a bubble (false and unjustified price increases here in America and around the globe) in the housing and other markets; allowing the creation of highly over leveraged (insufficient investment requirements) derivative financial products based on the new bubble asset prices; all of which was aided and abetted by a subservient sell out media that has been hard at work for the past fifty years diverting your attention and convincing you that getting screwed, living in fear, and hating and torturing other human beings is O.K.

    • The global crisis was created so as to implement global austerity and at the same time effect a global herd thinning and societal shift to a ruler and ruled world with the ruled engaged in perpetual conflict with each other.

    • The specific poisoning of the American mortgage system was accomplished by the large banking institutions creating the Mortgage Electronic Registry Systems known as MERS. This system allowed them to avoid local county taxes and to separate your mortgage, and the note for your mortgage, and then bundle them and resell them in the aforementioned “highly over leveraged (insufficient investment requirements) derivative financial products”, thus negatively affecting the ENTIRE real estate market and the domestic and global economy. This is why ALL HOMES ARE FALLING IN VALUE like a lead sinker. If you question your bank about the status of your mortgage you may be reported to a credit agency and your FICO score is subject to being lowered.


    • Stop being such a roll over sucker dumb ass and wake the fuck up! This government and the ‘rule of law’ has been TOTALLY hijacked and you are on the train to poverty and perpetual conflict. Election boycotts are now your only peaceful option …

    Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.

    [Rest of comment deleted at request of author.]

    Comment by i on the ball patriot — May 20, 2011 @ 2:26 pm

    • Thanks, i ball. A version of that would make a good handbill.

      Comment by Russ — May 20, 2011 @ 3:00 pm

  3. “Russ, sorry, please delete all after, “Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.” … beginning with “within each societal system (and its sphere of influence etc. …

    I had two projects going on at once and you got some draft notes.

    Again Apologies!

    Comment by i on the ball patriot — May 20, 2011 @ 2:33 pm

    • Earlier this morning I read this piece


      which also said Marx didn’t go far enough, albeit from a different point of view.

      Comment by Russ — May 20, 2011 @ 2:59 pm

      • Thanks Russ,
        Good link for me right now … Bookchin presents a lot of good practical policy contributions based in solid real world experience and a holistic viewpoint but like Marx he also did not go deep enough in determining core social forces.

        Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.

        Comment by i on the ball patriot — May 21, 2011 @ 8:55 am

  4. I am very glad you are helping your friend. I have a friend who is way underwater, and was considering walking away.
    I informed him of the mortgage fraud scandal, and convinced him to just stop paying (which he was going to do anyway if he walked away), while STAYING in the house.

    It’s working! He started calling Wells Fargo, demanding to see his original signed note.
    More than a year later, they have yet to produce the note.
    They tried sending him something that was the “note,” but his signature wasn’t on it.

    They’ve lost the note. And we’re in Minnesota, a state which passed a MERS-friendly law. (We are also a non-judicial foreclosure state: the bank can foreclose without necessarily going in front of a judge).

    At least he’s getting a year or more of free rent, and buying a house with cash in the meantime.

    Years ago, I would have criticized him for gaming the system. Now I hope he gets every last cent out of the bastards he can.

    Comment by Publius — May 20, 2011 @ 4:58 pm

    • Excellent story. That’s what I like to hear. I doubt my friend will try to do anything with this, but we’ll see.

      Comment by Russ — May 20, 2011 @ 5:54 pm

  5. I wish someone had written an email like this to me. I lost my house 2 1/2 years ago. I had never been late on a payment. THe patyment was determined by the bank and taken out of my check. WHat happened was 4 years before the foreclosure, they said I needed to make up some insurance payments. I don’t know why, that was supposed to be calculated into the loan and every year I got a new payment amount reflecting changedin taxes and insurance. That time it was $220 a month more than my loan it was supposed to end after 12 months. SO I paid it. THis did not go off my loan. It was not interest or principal. I did that for 4 years.

    Then they sent a notice that I had an even bigger excrow overage. Imy payment was raised another $300/month. I did not have an adjustable rate. I had a fixed rate 20 year loan. I called everyone I could think of, no one would take my calls. I tried my seantors and congressmen. At that time the foreclosure problem was really not known much. I quit making payments and ended up losing my home. I had lived in that house for 15 years. It was vbery hard for me, and especially since I did not deserve it. They would not negotiate with me. They had my house sold for $40000 less than they said owed, before I ever moved out. Then they wanted me to pay the difference. I filed bankruptcy.

    I had no idea anyone else was being treatedlike I was. I could not find anyone to help me and I could not afford a lawyer. I made too much for legal aid, but I decided to just get it over with. It took them 11 months to throw me out. I saved up $10000 in that time, so I could move and get my daughter started in college.

    I probably could have emptied out my 401K and managed to keep the house. I don’t know. But they would not disclose to my what that money was going for. I demanded again and again to be shown statements for the escrow account and I never got it. I decided I was not going to just throw $500 a month down the toilet. It was not insurance. My house was not woth enough to need $6000 a year for insurance.

    I still have one son at home. We are doing okay. It really is better to not have to depend on credit for a while. Either I can buy something or I can’t.

    I do wish I had known about all of he oher people being cheated out of their homes. I wish someone had reached out and helped me. I rtied everything I knew, but I didn’t know very much. You are doing a good thing.

    Comment by apishapa — May 23, 2011 @ 1:32 am

    • Hi apishapa. I’m sorry to hear about what happened to you. Those are common bankster tricks. But it’s good to hear you’re doing OK.

      Thanks for your kind words. I hope this site can do some good.

      Comment by Russ — May 23, 2011 @ 3:33 am

  6. A YouTube search on

    60 minutes foreclosures, this month

    will yield about 53 items, one of which is probably the one you want.

    Comment by Andy Lewis — May 23, 2011 @ 3:35 am

    • Thanks, Andy. I already found one.

      Comment by Russ — May 23, 2011 @ 3:39 am

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