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Steven Mnuchin, Foreclosure King of America
Secretary of the Treasury for the .01%
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Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin doesn’t exactly come across as the guy you’d want in your corner in a playground tussle. In the Trump administration, he’s been more like the kid trying to cop favor with the school bully. That, at least, is the role he seems to have taken in the Trump White House. When he isn’t circling the Sunday shows stooging for the president, he regularly plays the willing fall guy for tax policies guaranteed to stoke further inequality in America and for legislation that will remove just about any consumer protections against Wall Street.

Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs partner, arrived in Washington with a distinct reputation. Back in 2009, he had corralled a bundle of rich financiers to take over California’s IndyMac bank, shut down amid the 2008 foreclosure crisis by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). Bought for $13.9 billion (but only $1.3 billion in actual cash), Mnuchin turned it into a genuine foreclosure machine, in the process sealing his own fate when it came to his future reputation. At the time, he didn’t appear concerned about public approval. Something far more valuable was at stake: the $200 million that, according to Bloomberg News, he raked in personally, thanks to the deal.

No such luck, of course, for the bank’s ordinary borrowers. During Mnuchin’s reign, IndyMac carried out more than 36,000 foreclosures, tossing former homeowners (including active duty military servicemen and women) onto the street without hesitation or pity by any means necessary. According to a memo obtained by investigative reporter David Dayen, OneWest, the new name that Mnuchin and his billionaire posse coined for Indybank, of which Mnuchin was now CEO and chairman, “rushed delinquent homeowners out of their homes by violating notice and waiting period statutes, illegally backdated key documents, and effectively gamed foreclosure auctions.”

Now, Mnuchin remains bitter and frustrated that he can’t kick the reputation he got in those days. As he told a House Financial Services Committee Congressional hearing this July, “I take great offense to anybody who calls me the foreclosure king.” Such indignation would ring truer if, in May, one of Mnuchin’s banking units, a company called Financial Freedom, hadn’t agreed to pay a more than $89 million settlement to the government for taking unreasonable advantage of thousands of seniors through reverse mortgages which convert equity in a home into a loan. (A few months later, in August, a watchdog group, Campaign for Accountability, called upon the Justice Department to investigate Mnuchin for allegedly making false statements under oath to Congress about his actions at OneWest between 2009 and 2015.)

Like Donald Trump, Mnuchin is a man intent on making the rich richer and to hell with everyone else. Continually channeling Trump’s ego, whatever his smoldering resentments may be, he soldiers on — and in the context of the Trump White House successfully indeed. After all, this administration has lost 14 key people in less than a year, including an FBI director, a national security adviser, a White House chief of staff, and a White House communications director. Through it all, Mnuchin has remained in place, one of the relatively few members of The Donald’s original team not related by blood or marriage who is seemingly thriving. (Admittedly, he and the president were linked in what CNN once called a “business capacity” even before he became Trump’s campaign finance director in May 2016.)

Hamilton, Trump, and a Playbill for the Economy

There’s a history of Treasury secretaries having a special rapport with presidents that snakes back to the founding of the Republic. Alexander Hamilton, the first of them, had the full confidence of the first president, George Washington. With such backing, he established federal taxes and came up with plans for real economic development. He understood federal taxes to be essential to building America. In contrast, Mnuchin thinks the stock market is the ultimate arbiter of economic health and appears to consider taxation without representation (by the wealthy) the order of the day.

Since Mnuchin bagged one of the most influential economic positions on the planet, he’s been remarkably consistent on just one thing: making sure he lends a helping hand to the world of big finance, his former universe. He has, for instance, pushed hard for more bank deregulation by claiming that it will help the smaller banks. Don’t believe it for a second. His disdain for reenacting the Glass-Steagall Act, which once made the merging of commercial and investment banking operations illegal and so curtailed the too-big-to-fail status of the largest banks, tells you all you need to know. It reflects his real thinking when it comes to banks and the stability of the economy. Emblematic of this has been the way he steered the Financial Stability Oversight Council that he chairs to give AIG, the insurance company at the core of the 2008 financial meltdown, a gateway back to prominence by removing its too-big-to-fail label.

He’s proven adept at blurring the lines between what effective banking regulation would actually involve and how he can wordsmith out of pushing for it. In May, testifying before the Senate Banking Committee, for example, he noted that “we do not support [the] separation of banks and investment banks.” When Senator Elizabeth Warren pointed out that this was hardly the position Donald Trump and his team had taken during campaign 2016 (or of the Republican platform, which had explicitly called for the reinstitution of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933), he promptly waffled: “We, during the campaign… specifically came out and said we do support a twenty-first-century Glass-Steagall… That means there are aspects of it that we think may make sense, but we never said before that we supported a full separation of banks and investment banks.”

In June, when pressed on the matter by Senator Bernie Sanders, the Treasury secretary argued that Trump was not responsible for the language in the Republican party platform and remained opposed to breaking up the big banks. He added, “We think that that would hurt the economy, that would ruin liquidity in the market. What we are focused on is safe and prudent regulation for the large banks so we don’t have taxpayer risk.”

In other words, this is a man who has a real sense of the opportunity that’s embedded in this moment — for the large banks and their CEOs to make a bundle of money — but no appropriate sense of the risks involved or fear for a future in which he and his president might find themselves bailing out such banks, 2008-style.

Lessons unlearned? If that isn’t the Trump administration, what is?

Threatening the Market

Mnuchin may have little grasp of what constitutes real risk, but he can still make threats about it. In an October interview with Politico Money, he credited the stock market’s postelection rally to positive expectations that Congress would pass a major tax “reform” bill. If that bill doesn’t go through, he warned, the markets will suffer big time — and so will everyone else.

Coming from a Goldman Sachs alum, that should have rung a few bells. After all, in the fall of 2008, with the stock market tanking and banks imploding, then-Treasury Secretary and former Goldman Sachs CEO Hank Paulson took a similar position with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Following that chamber’s initial rejection of a $700 billion bank bailout bill that sent the markets into a tailspin, he warned that, if she didn’t get it through, the big banks would stop providing money to the American public. Sure enough, Congress complied. With 91 Republicans joining 172 Democrats, the bill passed by a vote of 263 to 171.

Nine years and a plethora of big bank subsidies later, Mnuchin conflated market levels with legislation in a similarly threatening manner. As he told Politico, “There is no question that the rally in the stock market has baked into it reasonably high expectations of us getting tax cuts and tax reform done.” He then added, “To the extent we get the tax deal done, the stock market will go up higher.” But with that, of course, went a warning: “There’s no question in my mind that if we don’t get it done you’re going to see a reversal of a significant amount of these gains.”

And speaking of reversals, the “Mnuchin Rule,” as it was dubbed in January, 2017, underscored the then-prevailing Trump administration position that the wealthy should not be afforded tax cuts. By October, however, Mnuchin had changed his rule. “When you’re cutting taxes across the board,” he explained to Politico, “it’s very hard not to give tax cuts to the wealthy with tax cuts to the middle class. The math, given how much you are collecting, is just hard to do.”

Actually, the math isn’t hard to do at all. My eight-year-old niece could do it. If you make more than a certain amount, your tax rates shouldn’t get cut. That’s the only math that makes sense. But in the land of tax subterfuge, even if you leave a top tax bracket rate as it is, you can still ensure that the wealthy get all the breaks in other ways.

On November 2nd, the Republicans finally released their “Tax Cuts and Job Act,” which contained new blows to middle-class wellbeing, including the elimination of deductions for medical expenses, student loan interest, and state and local taxes. For corporations, already flush with cash, the plan calls for a significant, not to say staggering, tax break. Their tax rate would be slashed from 35% to 20%.

And don’t forget repealing the estate tax, that other classic benefit for “the masses.” Count on one thing: there will be no reversals from Mnuchin or Trump on that because the math couldn’t be clearer. Only the hyper-wealthy have estates big enough to reap rewards from such a change. At an Institute for International Finance conference, even Mnuchin had to agree that this was a benefit of the rich, by the rich, and for the rich: “Obviously, the estate tax, I will concede, disproportionately helps rich people.” Indeed, the heirs to the estates of fewer than 1 in 500 Americans who die each year would benefit in any way from such a repeal, though the children or other relatives of 13 of the 24 members of Donald Trump’s cabinet and the president himself would bag a collective estate tax break of about $1.5 billion.

Still, don’t think that everything’s coming up roses for our latest secretary of the Treasury. Wall Street may now be king in Washington, but Mnuchin is not (though he is clearly a prince to the one man who truly matters right now, Donald Trump). In his efforts to promote the Trump vision (whatever that might be), the Treasury secretary seems to be coming up distinctly short, even with Republicans in Congress who have described his approach to lawmaking in terms ranging from “uncomfortable” to “intellectually insulting.”

Donald Trump, of course, campaigned as an anti-establishment candidate who would offer a hand to regular people, drain the Washington swamp, and have our backs. Then he promptly began filling his administration, especially when it came to the economy, with the richest of the rich, figures guaranteed to promote the dismantling of whatever tepid regulations remained to protect citizens from economic disaster while enriching the usual .01%.

Mnuchin has yet to even do something as simple and seemingly straightforward as posting a full-scale explanation of the tax plan he’s plugging so hard at the Treasury Department’s web page. Even though until November 2nd it remained a chimera, that hasn’t stopped him from rushing to its defense — the defense that is, of giving the extremely wealthy yet more of their money back. Welcome to the twenty-first-century American politics of the .01%.

Meanwhile, Mnuchin has noted that he’s a big fan of biographies, though his schedule doesn’t allow much time for “pleasure reading.” When asked about Alexander Hamilton, he said, “I have a beautiful painting of him in my office. He stares at me every day and I look at him for great advice.”

But Hamilton understood that, without adequate taxation, you couldn’t run a country, or pay its debts, a stance that informed how he implemented federal taxes in the new nation. As he said in 1801, “As to taxes, they are evidently inseparable from government. It is impossible without them to pay the debts of the nation, to protect it from foreign danger, or to secure individuals from lawless violence and rapine.” He also believed that those with more money should pay more taxes. His excise tax plan, for example, required the taxation of luxury items, bastions of the rich.

This government has, in fact, received more than $2.96 trillion in total tax revenues so far in the first 11 months of fiscal year 2017. That figure comes with a budget deficit of $673.7 billion, which means that if the rich or corporations were to cease to pay various taxes (at least at present rates), money would still have to come from somewhere. To begin to make up for the shortfall, the less wealthy will simply have to pay more in some fashion, as will states and cities, and cuts in social spending will undoubtedly follow as night does day.

The High-Flying Treasury Secretary Covers Trump’s Back

Mnuchin himself knows a situation ripe for the picking when he sees it, in government or out. Take, for instance, his prodigious use of military planes for his personal travel, both on government business and for pleasure. These flights have pushed the boundaries of judgement, if not legality. According to a report from Rich Delmar, the counsel to the Treasury Department’s inspector general, Mnuchin took military aircraft on at least seven occasions without obtaining appropriate authorization, skirting a “rigorous” preapproval process established to avoid undue use of such expensive amenities. And though he withdrew a request to take his wife on their honeymoon to Europe last summer by military aircraft, he did use an Air Force jet to fly to Kentucky with her to watch the solar eclipse and — he carefully added — to “review the gold” at Fort Knox. Unlike Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price whose government aircraft fetish cost him his job, Fort Knox covered the solar eclipse for Mnuchin.

He classified each of those trips as a “White House support mission,” which sounds dramatic and is a category technically reserved for situations in which commercial flights aren’t available or there is a national security or other emergency. I checked, however. There are several $200 economy flights from Washington to Kentucky, which more than beats the $10,000 per hour the Pentagon charges as its official aircraft expense when its planes are used in this way.

In addition to those flights, Mnuchin has been flying high as a kind of second Kellyanne Conway on all sorts of non-Treasury-related topics that threaten to eclipse his boss. With Trump embroiled in a bitter war of words with National Football League players taking a knee over racism, Mnuchin saw an opportunity and cruised the Sunday talk-show circuit attacking the players. He used his platform to insist that they should “do free speech on their own time” — “off the field,” not on it.

About a week later, he responded to the flak over the president’s lackluster support for Puerto Rican recovery after Hurricane Maria devastated that island. Defending his boss and his tweets in another circuit of those talk shows, he doubled down on White House criticisms of San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz. “When the president gets attacked, he attacks back,” he told Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press, adding, “I think the mayor’s comments were unfair given what the government has done.”

While the head of the Treasury isn’t an elected official, his words do hold considerable weight — and he is, after all, fifth in the line of succession for the presidency. The value, insights, and credibility of the Treasury Department impact economies, markets, investors, and confidence the world over.

Simply Swampy

Call it lying, misleading, flip-flopping, or the invocation of the “rights” of privilege, but Mnuchin has already amassed quite a catalogue of questionable statements in his brief career in public office and, while he’s been at it, he’s even made extra money along the way: at least $15 million and possibly as much as $53 million, reports Fortune, from “entertainment and real estate interests that he sold to comply with federal conflict of interest rules.”

For him, as for his boss, whatever anyone says, the bottom line and their allegiance remains simple and clear: it’s not to the middle class; it’s to their class, the half-billion and up folks.

Alexander Hamilton was no stranger to wealth either, but he understood that the nation’s wealth should be shared more evenly. He attempted to use his office as a national unifier and a place to coordinate efforts to pay off debts from the Revolutionary War. Mnuchin’s doctrine is one of returning to a world of fewer rules for Wall Street and fewer taxes on corporations and the wealthy, which, in translation, means greater risks and costs for the rest of us and for the country as a whole. While President Trump isn’t exactly the cannot-tell-a-lie inheritor of the Washingtonian tradition, his Treasury Secretary, the foreclosure king of America, is distinctly no Alexander Hamilton.

Nomi Prins, a TomDispatch regular, is the author of six books. Her most recent is All the Presidents’ Bankers: The Hidden Alliances That Drive American Power (Nation Books). She is a former Wall Street executive. Special thanks go to researcher Craig Wilson for his superb work on this piece.

(Republished from TomDispatch by permission of author or representative)
 
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  1. hyperbola says:

    Now why am I not surprised the Naomi is praising a jewish toadey like Hamilton who was neither born nor educated in the US?

    ALEXANDER HAMILTON’S JEWISH CONNECTION

    http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/189128/alexander-hamiltons-jewish-connection

    Jewish Bankers War on America

    https://centurean2.wordpress.com/2011/11/12/jewish-bankers-war-on-america-2/

    ….. The silent war against America started in 1791 when the Rothschild agent and Jew, Alexander Hamilton in George Washington’s cabinet. Was able to set up the legal base for a central bank in America to be born, the “First Bank Of the United States.” With a 20 year charter 1811, the charter for Rothschild’s “First Bank Of the United States” runs out and Congress votes against it’s renewal. In response to this Nathan Mayer Rothschild threatens the America government with the direct statement ” Either the application for renewal of the charter is granted or the United States will find itself involved in a most disastrous war.”

    The American government refuses to bow to the threat and the vote remained.

    Nathan Rothschild upon hearing the news makes the statement “Teach those impudent American’s a lesson bring them back to colonial status!” So Britain by this time being firmly under the control of Rothschild’s and other Jewish banker families declares war on America. The war of 1812 begins which will last several years and kill thousands and leaves the American capital burned to the ground. The aim of this war for the Jews was to cause the Free Gentile Nation of America to create such a massive war debt in defending themselves they would be forced to cede, and renew the charter.

    The plan succeeds in 1816 the American government forced by terrorist tactics of the Jews creates a new 20 year charter for the Rothschilds “Second Bank of America.”….

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  2. Issac says:

    Say what you will of the Goldman cabal, they were the appointment material of either potential administration. You did; however, very much bury the lead. The tax plan, specifically that which denies deductions on state and local taxes, is the very embodiment of Hamiltonian Federalism. The system which Hamilton promoted was highly centralized (he notably preferred that Washington should have stayed on as an executive monarch) and exerted great control over the subordinate states. To have states like California and New York end-running federal taxes as a result of generating their own bloated tax systems would have seemed to Hamilton a Jeffersonian Confederate absurdity.

    Of course, Mnuchin is no true Hamiltonian. Nobody in finance is anymore. But what he represents is nothing more than doing business with those who have institutional power. Any president must grasp the hand of the neoliberals and try to shake out what reforms are possible. There will be resistance, a good deal of it in-fact, but promising tax cuts to politically pragmatic corporate entities in return for punishing wildly out of control progressive bastions is a transparently good deal. One which, predictably, produces tirades such as this article.

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  3. Trump’s cabinet and administration has more Jews in it than a Bar Mitzvah. Check Obama’s appointees. Fifty four percent of Clinton’s appointments were Jewish. It never changes and of course if you can do math then your antisemitic.

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  4. One sees the claws of Goldman Sachs anywhere, alas also with the ECB, Draghi.

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  5. he’s also the treasury secretary of munchkins.

    i wonder if ms prins is related to klaus nomi?

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  6. I’m ‘reviewing my gold’. Clunk, clunk…clunk. Yup, all there.

    More than at Fort Knox.

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  7. One nice thing about monarchies is when things get bad enough and the cost benefit of the people changing governments weighs in favor the sovereign people know exactly who to kill. One of the really insidious things about democracy is that it insists everyone at least in some measure take responsibility for things they are in no way in favor of, merely assenting to democracy is enough to make one faced with incompetent tyranny feel at least partly responsible and too guilty to object too strenuously.
    But even more insidious is democracies diffusion of real power. This works in several ways, The worst is it, unlike monarchy, or other hierarchical models, spreads responsibility not merely over hundreds or thousands of legislators, but also among the judiciary, the civil service, the academia, NGOs, the media, etc. By the time one is about 30 one realizes there simply are not enough bullets for all the responsible parties, that assigning blame is really impossible and worse useless since even mass killings would simply make room for new incompetent tyrants. A democratic citizen of any intelligence realizes soon that “you cant fight city hall” They’re all the same” “what can be done” etc. Of course this is not a bug its a feature as far as the rulers are concerned.

    And make no mistake governments are instituted by and for the natural elites, its just some incentivize those elites more in line with the people’s interests. Elites competition is among themselves, but the people are a huge deciding block of power however they rarely exercise that authority unless things get really bad, they are more likely to exercise it when it will cost them little and the possibility of better government is real. Democracy assures them it will cost them dearly and the chance for improvement is nil.

    A wise king aligned himself with the people and his own interest against his fellow elites interest, This kept fellow elites in line and competing to administer the king and peoples business well, democracy is ten thousand barron’s carving out fiefdoms making backroom alliances. Its exactly what it purported to have solved the inefficiency of human capital as we segued out of agriculture into industry. What gains we made in meritocracy over aristocracy were immediately lost as the new aristocracy had not the authoritarian hierarchy to contain its ambitions. But rather had the freedom to draft an army of useless mouths to bolster its position among its rivals. What is needed is hierarchy again one way would be to limit democracy participation to the stakeholders the actually productive citizens, at the end of the year the IRS could determine who was a net taxpayer and only those votes would be available to the elites also fake money must go. Those productive voters and their representatives should not be able to vote to spend others money through debt, monetary inflation, and various schemes they have devised, a government that can not spend more than it takes in will have a very quick feedback loop on its choices. Leftism wont survive 6 months without fake money, the farthest leftist will not vote for equalization schemes if they have to pay for it with their child’s school money, the police that protect them, the transport hubs they use. Leftism is born of the lie that money unlimited.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    "To find out who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize"

    The power nexuses are in money creation and reality creation (media). Nothing else really matters.
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  8. Regarding the mortgage crises, leftists are not fooling anyone blaming wall street it was clinton and bush who took up Obama’s acorn scheme to redistribute wealth to useless welfare cases with liar loans. yeah wall street jews took a cut monetizing the commie debt while transferring it to the productive whites as usual, but that was always part of the plan. You’re not fooling anyone pretending todays “capitalists” and “communists” are not the same globalist jews and their running dog wasp race traitors. Well actually you’re fooling conservatives and average SJWs, but thats coming to an end.

    foreclosing on loans that should never have been made was the only good thing that eventually came out of this scam.But even now the commies and capitalists are still giving out liar loans and sub prime loans, with the same redistributionist rhetoric about how niggers and spics have a basic human right to white money

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    • Replies: @map
    The 2007 crash in the economy was caused by the Federal Reserve. It was not caused by bad loans. People had money so they were buying houses. Interest rates were low because the inflation was wrung out of the US dollar between 1997-2003.

    The Fed crashed the economy by raising the Federal Funds rate to 5%. Because the prime rate is stuck at a fixed relationship of 3.25 percentage points, that means the prime rate went up to 8.25%.

    What do you think happens to an ARM when the prime is at 8.25%? Or, what happens to new lending at 8.25%?

    The Fed crashed the economy.
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  9. In other words, a real prince of a guy: The archetypical American CEO.

    “Mnuchin thinks the stock market is the ultimate arbiter of economic health ….”

    I seriously doubt that is his true belief, at least where his own fortunes are concerned.

    Maybe we need to find a way to issue stock options on the US to this guy so we can “better align just interests to that of the shareholders.” Sorry, a little C-Suite humour there.

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  10. Altai says:

    Mightn’t have to deal with him for too much longer if his ties to the Hollywood sex scandals come up. He and Brett Ratner had a lot of dealings and Ratner was apparently involved in things you can’t bring up in polite conversation.

    Turns out the swamp drains itself.

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  11. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    Hamiliton (the show) was funded by the Rockefeller foundation. Kamala Harris (the AG paid off to become a Senator) got her funding from Mnuchin.

    There are lots of lessons here for the kids: Money buys legal indemnification for the mafia, from your local courthouse all the way to the Supreme Court. Money puts the crooks in positions at agencies or in the Justice Department. Money buys elections. Money transforms a history of fraud and violence and war into a schizophrenic tale of social justice. Money wants you to believe there is a left and a right, that there are good guys and bad guys. Finally, money pays former employees to write gentle mocking tales as a threatening reminder that there is nothing you can do about it. Most information is verbotten but finance porn is free. Keep posting because you don’t even own your own thoughts in ‘Murica – that’s something the good guys will never tell you either.

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    • Agree: jacques sheete
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  12. Joe Hide says:

    Stopped reading as soon as author started bashing Trump. Seek out reality based evidence of the positive changes taking place over the last year instead. While the info about Munchkin might well be correct, the most dangerous weaponization of this dialogue is to link the believable and supportable truths with it’s deceptive disinformation.

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  13. “tossing former homeowners (including active duty military servicemen and women) onto the street without hesitation or pity by any means necessary”

    Informative article but the author must surely know that a person does not own the house until every nickel is paid back to the bank. The bank is the owner of the house.
    I know many people who foolishly took out home equity loans on houses with outstanding mortgages.One of my neighbors bought his place twenty years ago for $170,000 and recently got foreclosed for $370,000. WTF. I hope there are not many out there like that or we’ll be in trouble again.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    If people don't get loans they can never pay back, how else are banks going to make money? Quite a few of the folk sign their name to an obligation the Bank knows they'll never be able to meet. Capital One does this with auto loans every day of the week. This is clearly immoral, but in today's America, immorality has become morality.
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  14. One of my neighbors bought his place twenty years ago for $170,000 and recently got foreclosed for $370,000. WTF.

    WTF, indeed.

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  15. TheOldOne says:

    niteranger:

    I think you mean you’re.

    What middle school did you attend?

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    • Replies: @niteranger
    Yes, I slipped up. It's a common type and proofreading error. By the way check the NY Times, Post or any other publication (especially on the internet) for similar errors. You might be surprised at what you find. When it's late at night perhaps I'm not as sharp. Since you are perfect you may now go to the head of the class.
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  16. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @europeasant
    "tossing former homeowners (including active duty military servicemen and women) onto the street without hesitation or pity by any means necessary"

    Informative article but the author must surely know that a person does not own the house until every nickel is paid back to the bank. The bank is the owner of the house.
    I know many people who foolishly took out home equity loans on houses with outstanding mortgages.One of my neighbors bought his place twenty years ago for $170,000 and recently got foreclosed for $370,000. WTF. I hope there are not many out there like that or we'll be in trouble again.

    If people don’t get loans they can never pay back, how else are banks going to make money? Quite a few of the folk sign their name to an obligation the Bank knows they’ll never be able to meet. Capital One does this with auto loans every day of the week. This is clearly immoral, but in today’s America, immorality has become morality.

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    • Replies: @Engineer
    A significant number of those on the political right blindly worship crony capitalism no matter how immoral, devious and crooked its practitioners get. I blame cold war paranoia and brainwashing that has been passed down to the offspring from people whose prime years were in that era.

    Or maybe it's another form of political illiteracy. After all in America millions sincerely believe Obama was a Marxist or Hillary is a communist even though this is objectively untrue and anyone who believes otherwise has no fracking clue what those terms mean.

    Everything is becoming "subjective" in post-truth America and the motto "If I think it, it is true and real to me and that is all that matters" is popular across the spectrum. Meanwhile the vilest most avaricious shitbags fleece, screw and steal every last penny they can and make it so an honest man can no longer earn a living and support a family with his wages. They call this "capitalism" and the brainwashed portion of the population jumps on board even as they themselves are being bent over the barrel.

    These are the kind of terminally paranoid people who give Unz grief for including leftwing commentators on his site and think he must be some sort of closet commie for not posting only stuff he ideologically agrees with. It's sad is what it is.
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  17. map says:
    @Colleen Pater
    Regarding the mortgage crises, leftists are not fooling anyone blaming wall street it was clinton and bush who took up Obama's acorn scheme to redistribute wealth to useless welfare cases with liar loans. yeah wall street jews took a cut monetizing the commie debt while transferring it to the productive whites as usual, but that was always part of the plan. You're not fooling anyone pretending todays "capitalists" and "communists" are not the same globalist jews and their running dog wasp race traitors. Well actually you're fooling conservatives and average SJWs, but thats coming to an end.

    foreclosing on loans that should never have been made was the only good thing that eventually came out of this scam.But even now the commies and capitalists are still giving out liar loans and sub prime loans, with the same redistributionist rhetoric about how niggers and spics have a basic human right to white money

    The 2007 crash in the economy was caused by the Federal Reserve. It was not caused by bad loans. People had money so they were buying houses. Interest rates were low because the inflation was wrung out of the US dollar between 1997-2003.

    The Fed crashed the economy by raising the Federal Funds rate to 5%. Because the prime rate is stuck at a fixed relationship of 3.25 percentage points, that means the prime rate went up to 8.25%.

    What do you think happens to an ARM when the prime is at 8.25%? Or, what happens to new lending at 8.25%?

    The Fed crashed the economy.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Colleen Pater
    wow if you want to blame the fed raising rates is not the way to go. lowering rates and making holding money for less than inflation a losing proposition and forcing everyone into high risk assets, or printing money with no regard to actual productivity and causing said inflation which they then hide. or reinflating the dotcom crash driving the investors into real estate instead. But raising rates to 2% above their fake inflation rate is hardly what caused the MORTGAGE DEFAULT SWAP CRISIS. It wasnt the higher interest rates (how old are you to think 5% is a high mortgage rate?) it was the default rates that were being hidden by the cash out refinance scams and the repackaging and the fake credit ratings - but most of all it just went on too long and they ran out of greater fools.You cant flip out of a mortgage you never could afford when no ones left to buy. After they gave every welfare nigger and spic a free house and five refis to keep the payments ans big screens and SUV s going condo flippers heard about these liar loans and the party continued until no more suckers left. Then crash and I stepped in LOLOLOL and Im now starting to sell LOLOLOL
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  18. @TheOldOne
    niteranger:

    I think you mean you're.

    What middle school did you attend?

    Yes, I slipped up. It’s a common type and proofreading error. By the way check the NY Times, Post or any other publication (especially on the internet) for similar errors. You might be surprised at what you find. When it’s late at night perhaps I’m not as sharp. Since you are perfect you may now go to the head of the class.

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  19. j2 says:

    George W. Bush and Barack Obama unquestionably made income inequality worse.

    Trump brings in those who know best how to manipulate the system to try to clean up the system they know so well, and propose doing something different not yet tried.

    You all find a whole bunch of straw men to make certain nothing starts that might change the current income-inequality relationship.

    Great logic. Is this what they teach in Ivy League schools?

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  20. The crash was caused by the deliberate attempt to make homeownership look like America (Clinton)
    and for the moral benefit of homeownership (Bush II). Loans secured by over valued property were given to people who did not make a meaningful down payment and could not pay the monthly. Foreclosure was necessary, but I wonder how many soft loan recipients were actually out of pocket.

    Sure cheap money raised asset values, but with proper down payments and under writing standards, there is no mortgage melt down.

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  21. @map
    The 2007 crash in the economy was caused by the Federal Reserve. It was not caused by bad loans. People had money so they were buying houses. Interest rates were low because the inflation was wrung out of the US dollar between 1997-2003.

    The Fed crashed the economy by raising the Federal Funds rate to 5%. Because the prime rate is stuck at a fixed relationship of 3.25 percentage points, that means the prime rate went up to 8.25%.

    What do you think happens to an ARM when the prime is at 8.25%? Or, what happens to new lending at 8.25%?

    The Fed crashed the economy.

    wow if you want to blame the fed raising rates is not the way to go. lowering rates and making holding money for less than inflation a losing proposition and forcing everyone into high risk assets, or printing money with no regard to actual productivity and causing said inflation which they then hide. or reinflating the dotcom crash driving the investors into real estate instead. But raising rates to 2% above their fake inflation rate is hardly what caused the MORTGAGE DEFAULT SWAP CRISIS. It wasnt the higher interest rates (how old are you to think 5% is a high mortgage rate?) it was the default rates that were being hidden by the cash out refinance scams and the repackaging and the fake credit ratings – but most of all it just went on too long and they ran out of greater fools.You cant flip out of a mortgage you never could afford when no ones left to buy. After they gave every welfare nigger and spic a free house and five refis to keep the payments ans big screens and SUV s going condo flippers heard about these liar loans and the party continued until no more suckers left. Then crash and I stepped in LOLOLOL and Im now starting to sell LOLOLOL

    Read More
    • Replies: @map
    Colleen,

    The Fed is primarily involved in targeting interest rates as a way of stabilizing the US dollar. The problem is, the fed has no way of knowing if price increases represent a supply and demand for dollars or if they reflect a weakening currency. So, the Fed assumes that any massive increases in the economy are due to "bubbles" or "irrational exuberance" or some other nonsense.

    They blew apart the Nasdaq in the late 90's. They caused the Asian flu in the late 90's. They busted out the economy in 2004 and they caused the collapse of the housing market in 2007-2008.

    The mortgage rate was not 5%. That is the Federal Funds Rate for overnight money. The prime rate hit 8.25%. That is the rate Apple would get. The average person saw interest rates hit 11% or more.

    What do you think happens to a mortgage payment if your ARM goes from 2-3% to 11%? You go bankrupt.

    The Fed knows it caused the mortgage crisis, with that a**hole Ben Bernanke tanking the economy.

    The original purpose of the fed was to use open market activities to maintain the gold standard. When the gold standard collapsed under Nixon, the Fed actually tried Friedman's monetarism and that caused a massive inflation for about 9 months before Volcker abandoned it.

    The CRA had little to do with it.

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  22. (Sung by a chorus of Mnuchins)

    “We represent
    The foreclosure guild
    The foreclosure guild
    The foreclosure guild…etc.”

    Cue the Wicked Witch of the West, somebody!

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  23. Engineer says:
    @Anonymous
    If people don't get loans they can never pay back, how else are banks going to make money? Quite a few of the folk sign their name to an obligation the Bank knows they'll never be able to meet. Capital One does this with auto loans every day of the week. This is clearly immoral, but in today's America, immorality has become morality.

    A significant number of those on the political right blindly worship crony capitalism no matter how immoral, devious and crooked its practitioners get. I blame cold war paranoia and brainwashing that has been passed down to the offspring from people whose prime years were in that era.

    Or maybe it’s another form of political illiteracy. After all in America millions sincerely believe Obama was a Marxist or Hillary is a communist even though this is objectively untrue and anyone who believes otherwise has no fracking clue what those terms mean.

    Everything is becoming “subjective” in post-truth America and the motto “If I think it, it is true and real to me and that is all that matters” is popular across the spectrum. Meanwhile the vilest most avaricious shitbags fleece, screw and steal every last penny they can and make it so an honest man can no longer earn a living and support a family with his wages. They call this “capitalism” and the brainwashed portion of the population jumps on board even as they themselves are being bent over the barrel.

    These are the kind of terminally paranoid people who give Unz grief for including leftwing commentators on his site and think he must be some sort of closet commie for not posting only stuff he ideologically agrees with. It’s sad is what it is.

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    • Agree: edNels
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  24. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Colleen Pater
    One nice thing about monarchies is when things get bad enough and the cost benefit of the people changing governments weighs in favor the sovereign people know exactly who to kill. One of the really insidious things about democracy is that it insists everyone at least in some measure take responsibility for things they are in no way in favor of, merely assenting to democracy is enough to make one faced with incompetent tyranny feel at least partly responsible and too guilty to object too strenuously.
    But even more insidious is democracies diffusion of real power. This works in several ways, The worst is it, unlike monarchy, or other hierarchical models, spreads responsibility not merely over hundreds or thousands of legislators, but also among the judiciary, the civil service, the academia, NGOs, the media, etc. By the time one is about 30 one realizes there simply are not enough bullets for all the responsible parties, that assigning blame is really impossible and worse useless since even mass killings would simply make room for new incompetent tyrants. A democratic citizen of any intelligence realizes soon that "you cant fight city hall" They're all the same" "what can be done" etc. Of course this is not a bug its a feature as far as the rulers are concerned.

    And make no mistake governments are instituted by and for the natural elites, its just some incentivize those elites more in line with the people's interests. Elites competition is among themselves, but the people are a huge deciding block of power however they rarely exercise that authority unless things get really bad, they are more likely to exercise it when it will cost them little and the possibility of better government is real. Democracy assures them it will cost them dearly and the chance for improvement is nil.

    A wise king aligned himself with the people and his own interest against his fellow elites interest, This kept fellow elites in line and competing to administer the king and peoples business well, democracy is ten thousand barron's carving out fiefdoms making backroom alliances. Its exactly what it purported to have solved the inefficiency of human capital as we segued out of agriculture into industry. What gains we made in meritocracy over aristocracy were immediately lost as the new aristocracy had not the authoritarian hierarchy to contain its ambitions. But rather had the freedom to draft an army of useless mouths to bolster its position among its rivals. What is needed is hierarchy again one way would be to limit democracy participation to the stakeholders the actually productive citizens, at the end of the year the IRS could determine who was a net taxpayer and only those votes would be available to the elites also fake money must go. Those productive voters and their representatives should not be able to vote to spend others money through debt, monetary inflation, and various schemes they have devised, a government that can not spend more than it takes in will have a very quick feedback loop on its choices. Leftism wont survive 6 months without fake money, the farthest leftist will not vote for equalization schemes if they have to pay for it with their child's school money, the police that protect them, the transport hubs they use. Leftism is born of the lie that money unlimited.

    “To find out who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize”

    The power nexuses are in money creation and reality creation (media). Nothing else really matters.

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  25. Im well aware of the jewish problem, But one way to attack it is to flank the systems they use to exploit. Democracy is one, without democracy now that they have killed christianity for the most part its very hard for them to control us. Cultural marxist coalition of the degenerates only works if women fags minorities etc are given a vote to begin with. As I pointed out in my comment leftism can not exist 6 months without the fake money jews create and indebt us with while making a commision on the process.Only in a democratic government is media allowed to say whatever it wants in opposition to the nation’s interest.The problem is democracy is a sor of religion to european peoples, and for good reason it served us well for a time. as i said it solved the problem of human capital waste in the transition from agrarian hereditary aristocracy into industrialized urbanity. I dont like some neoreactionaries propose we do away entirely with meritocracy, rather we become homest about who is actually meritable which we lie about in both directions. First we lie that nigger races have value and that women can be trusted to vote, but we also lie about the value to the nation of the average white yeoman. He is not equivalent to a nigger or a woman and while I in no way encourage any form of socialist economics it is a hard fact that without the idaho farm boy manning a nuclear sub in the pacific bezos container ship business model is worthless, without the steamfitters cops and farmers and the nation their forefathers built and defended none of our cognitive elites ideas were worth shit, i hate to say it in a sense Obama the nigger was right they didn’t build that alone try building microsoft in nigeria, see how much money goldman sachs can make without the american legal system backed up by its force potential, what would ford be without the highway system. So sure they deserve their billions but white men deserve their cut a wage that affords the physical and economic security and dignity that whites require for family formation. Not even china would exist if not for white technologies and markets and infrastructure. So whats happened is the elites are cutting the middle out of the hierarchy and substituting a cheaper more controllable less competitive useless class., I propose we reinstitute the natural hierarchy to include the demonstrably productive those who actually pay more in than they take out. At first this will cut a lot of white men out but over a short period of time as this eliminates socialism they will again regain their hegemony, and of course at that point they will reinstitute an ethno state hopefully without rancor but rather merely as a matter of natural order like all the other ethno states no one questions the right of.

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  26. edNels says:

    The thing is probably that somebody figured they could live up their capital borrowing against the appreciated asset known as the family house.

    THat isn’t too uncommon a practice, in fact it is the main reason, that there has been so much spending going on in the past few decades, which has turned the population into debt slaves, even when the housing appreciation continued nonstop, (with one little glitch in the ’80′s).

    But to me, I didn’t bite, I smelled this rat right along and retired my debt and though tempted a few times, didn’t go long and did with out the big cars and all that. But I was bothered by just how many new cars stormed around my puddlejumper commuting down the freeway, seemed like everybody was flush, and I must be in blinders ’cause how the hell can these bean counters afford that, when I was working all the time at a good rate, and couldn’t see fit to pop for that stuff.

    Easy credit! Wether it be from home equity or just consumer loan, but the less frugal or less property oriented types of folks, might be easy prey to loan (sharks) and predatory mortgage co’s when they found theirselfs sitting on a bundle!

    Main point for me is: That it was a monumental epic scam, that unknown easy credit came to be after the myth was carefully lengthily propagated and perpetuated over decades, a generation… that inflation would eat up the capital, you pay back the money in depreciated dollars, Real Estate would always go up, and if you got stuck you could even go bust every 7 years, with limited repercussions.

    Main point again: When things were normal before, folks couldn’t make the loan, usually a second place mortgage, the often private investor could take the house back at auction for the price of the 1st mortgage or at some nice discount from the market value.

    When all this funny loans was happening the ——————– F’n——-wall street——-bast—-mortgage lenders———scam———– and WTF——-!! the Robosigners!!!!—-

    Whatamean…… them SOB’s upended normal title transactions and local county transaction tax recordation, and whoa!! buddy, Unknown Billions a Money and and loss of record… Scam of scams, the Banks now became owners of the property for PEANUTS on the dollar!

    Maybe some of the Bansters have connections to the hedgehogfunds… who owned up the easy pickins of the foreclosed properties,

    Bottom line now is this: the hapless ignorant naive folks that took on, signed for the easy loans, were pawns.

    unknowing pawns who didn’t have any good credit to loose in the first place, and have all disappeared now, but they played a part in the hugest scam,

    The scam that maid overinflated housing go off the market at foreclosure, and be acquired for peanuts by insiders. While there are stupid who believe in… Markets!!!!

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  27. Buster says:

    Thanks Nomi, you really know your stuff, but along side the technical machinations, there is the obvious psychological aspect that the man is a Jew and is intentionally bleeding, and attempting to destroy the American people for international Jewry.

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  28. Buster says:

    zog activities are becoming more overt. the parasitic, conman Jew is being seen thru. Everything he says are lies and deception

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  29. map says:
    @Colleen Pater
    wow if you want to blame the fed raising rates is not the way to go. lowering rates and making holding money for less than inflation a losing proposition and forcing everyone into high risk assets, or printing money with no regard to actual productivity and causing said inflation which they then hide. or reinflating the dotcom crash driving the investors into real estate instead. But raising rates to 2% above their fake inflation rate is hardly what caused the MORTGAGE DEFAULT SWAP CRISIS. It wasnt the higher interest rates (how old are you to think 5% is a high mortgage rate?) it was the default rates that were being hidden by the cash out refinance scams and the repackaging and the fake credit ratings - but most of all it just went on too long and they ran out of greater fools.You cant flip out of a mortgage you never could afford when no ones left to buy. After they gave every welfare nigger and spic a free house and five refis to keep the payments ans big screens and SUV s going condo flippers heard about these liar loans and the party continued until no more suckers left. Then crash and I stepped in LOLOLOL and Im now starting to sell LOLOLOL

    Colleen,

    The Fed is primarily involved in targeting interest rates as a way of stabilizing the US dollar. The problem is, the fed has no way of knowing if price increases represent a supply and demand for dollars or if they reflect a weakening currency. So, the Fed assumes that any massive increases in the economy are due to “bubbles” or “irrational exuberance” or some other nonsense.

    They blew apart the Nasdaq in the late 90′s. They caused the Asian flu in the late 90′s. They busted out the economy in 2004 and they caused the collapse of the housing market in 2007-2008.

    The mortgage rate was not 5%. That is the Federal Funds Rate for overnight money. The prime rate hit 8.25%. That is the rate Apple would get. The average person saw interest rates hit 11% or more.

    What do you think happens to a mortgage payment if your ARM goes from 2-3% to 11%? You go bankrupt.

    The Fed knows it caused the mortgage crisis, with that a**hole Ben Bernanke tanking the economy.

    The original purpose of the fed was to use open market activities to maintain the gold standard. When the gold standard collapsed under Nixon, the Fed actually tried Friedman’s monetarism and that caused a massive inflation for about 9 months before Volcker abandoned it.

    The CRA had little to do with it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Colleen Pater
    [If you make absolutely no effort at proper capitalization, spelling, or punctuation, your comments may just get trashed.]
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  30. that a**hole Ben Bernanke

    Here, let me fix that for you:

    that corrupt, lying, thieving, White-hating racist JEW a**hole Ben Bernanke

    You’re welcome

    And Mnuchin is one of the most dangerous Jews in America, but who cares what I think ?

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  31. @map
    Colleen,

    The Fed is primarily involved in targeting interest rates as a way of stabilizing the US dollar. The problem is, the fed has no way of knowing if price increases represent a supply and demand for dollars or if they reflect a weakening currency. So, the Fed assumes that any massive increases in the economy are due to "bubbles" or "irrational exuberance" or some other nonsense.

    They blew apart the Nasdaq in the late 90's. They caused the Asian flu in the late 90's. They busted out the economy in 2004 and they caused the collapse of the housing market in 2007-2008.

    The mortgage rate was not 5%. That is the Federal Funds Rate for overnight money. The prime rate hit 8.25%. That is the rate Apple would get. The average person saw interest rates hit 11% or more.

    What do you think happens to a mortgage payment if your ARM goes from 2-3% to 11%? You go bankrupt.

    The Fed knows it caused the mortgage crisis, with that a**hole Ben Bernanke tanking the economy.

    The original purpose of the fed was to use open market activities to maintain the gold standard. When the gold standard collapsed under Nixon, the Fed actually tried Friedman's monetarism and that caused a massive inflation for about 9 months before Volcker abandoned it.

    The CRA had little to do with it.

    [If you make absolutely no effort at proper capitalization, spelling, or punctuation, your comments may just get trashed.]

    Read More
    • Replies: @Colleen Pater
    I make an effort go to hell
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  32. @Colleen Pater
    [If you make absolutely no effort at proper capitalization, spelling, or punctuation, your comments may just get trashed.]

    I make an effort go to hell

    Read More
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