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About Me

Missouri, United States
I consider myself the "black sheep" of the family. I moved away from home when I was 19 and a year ago I decided it was time I moved back home....so glad to be among family and friends. I grew up playing the piano but haven't played in years. I have always thought outside the box, wanting to move to Boquete Panama, I am a tea party participant. I am a reiki master and I have 2 good guard dogs....a dachshund and Jack Russell terrorist. I go to alternative news websites daily for news (don't trust MSM to tell the truth). Operation mockingbird is a CIA operation that began in the '40's to control the media both foreign and domestic. This is why I go to alternative news websites. For an excellent article to read on the subject I suggest http://www.prisonplanet.com/analysis_louise_01_03_03_mockingbird.html

I WANT YOUR MONEY TRAILER

Friday, August 20, 2010

"UNDERSTANDING WHAT THE BANKERS DID - FRAUDULENT FORECLOSURES"

Rumormill News
Posted By: hobie <Send E-Mail>
Date: Thursday, 19-Aug-2010 23:15:19
(Thanks kindly, G. :)
Reader GT offers this excellent and easily understood explanation of what the bankers did and why so many current efforts at foreclosure may be fraudulent:
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Fraudulent Foreclosures
Dear Hobie,
I've been a reader here for some time, but I haven't put my two cents into mix until now. I chose you to send this to, because I appreciate your style, your sense of fair play, ... and your love of music. LOL This is a letter I originally wrote, then revised for general consumption. After sharing it with several friends, they encouraged me to send it out there to the universe. I know it doesn't contain any new info for you (being the up-to-date kind of guy you are), but I hope it can be passed along by your readers for others, to help them wrap their head around this confusing situation. I'd appreciate it if you'd only use my initials, and just keep this portion of the letter to yourself. Thanks!
Light & Love Darlin'!
G.T.
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Dear Friends ...
Recently, the County Commission in our area proposed a 90-Day Moratorium on Foreclosures. Since I'm personally acquainted with this issue, I decided to accept their request for comments. This is an edited copy (took out local references) of the letter I sent to the Commission regarding the illegal foreclosure fraud going on these days.
I know I've explained pieces of this to just about everyone I know in the last few years (LOL), but I wanted to send this along as a good synopsis of what I've found. I spent two days composing this letter, because I wanted to be short & to the point with it, but I had to be sure to fill in enough of the blanks in the story to bring them up to speed on the matter. I think it's a good summary, and it will, hopefully, help explain all of this massive amount of information to the average person.
Please keep in mind that I'm not the only person this is happening to, and consider carefully, the information contained here. You might just want to go down to your county courthouse, and look up the title on your own mortgage (if you have one). Remember, 60+% of all new mortgages or refinances in the last 10 years, have been "placed" in MERS on official county real estate records.
Anyway, I just thought I'd send this out, and I encourage everyone to pass this information along. Hopefully, it will help others who find themselves in the same situation. (If you have questions, you might check out the links at the bottom of the page).
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Re: Moratorium on Foreclosures
I'm writing to you today, to ask for your support of the proposed 90-Day Moratorium on Foreclosures . I've spoken with the person who has been charged with gathering official information for your discussion, but I also wanted to speak to you directly, on a much more personal level.
Presently, I'm in the process of waiting for "a sale of my home (of 20 years) on the courthouse steps". This sale is the culmination of my year+ long struggle with a situation, which I find the essence of absurdity, in our current system. And, I am not the only one it is happening to. I would estimate that 60-70% of the current foreclosures happening in our county, are illegal at minimum, and intentionally fraudulent at best.
Allow me to explain to you a practice that has permeated our real estate records system so thoroughly, that it deserves to be addressed immediately on a county, state, and federal level. I've done literally thousands of hours researching just exactly how I ended up in this situation, and I wanted to share what I've discovered with you.
You, as representatives of the people of our county, have the authority to make a real difference in the present state of affairs facing our homeowners, and I would like to be sure you approach this with all the facts involved in this situation.
First off, you'll need some background information to intelligently follow this convoluted trail. In November of 1999, the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 was repealed by Congress. Wikipedia describes it in the following quote:

"The repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 effectively removed the separation that previously existed between Wall Street investment banks and depositor (mortgage/savings) banks and has been blamed for exacerbating the damage caused by the collapse of the subprime mortgage market that led to the Financial crisis of 2007?2010."

Basically what this means is, that these rule changes opened the door for mortgage/savings banks to enter a more speculative (higher risk) market. To profit from this change in the rules, mortgage bankers started creating a whole new type of derivative to sell on the world stock market. This usually consisted of multiple mortgage contracts, re-packaged/bundled together, to be sold as one 'unit' (sometimes called a CDO - Collateralized Debt Obligation). While this type of financial packaging was not specifically outlawed (it had never been done before), it was a very loose interpretation of the change in banking regulations created when Glass-Steagall was removed.

Early on, these same bankers realized that if they had to follow the established recording rules of each piece of real estate they 'bundled' for sale, they would have to pay quite a bit of money in fees to all the county courthouses out there, especially since those CDO's could potentially be traded multiple times. To alleviate this expense, several of the biggest banks out there (Goldman-Sacs, JP Morgan Chase, Citibank, ...), put up the seed funds to create a central title depository company/contractor, called MERS.
MERS is described as:

"Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is a privately held company that operates an electronic registry designed to track servicing rights and ownership of mortgage loans in the United States.

MERS serves as the mortgagee of record for lenders, investors and their loan servicers in the county land records. MERS claims its process eliminates the need to file assignments in the county land records which lowers costs for lenders by reducing county recording revenues from real estate transfers, and provides a central source of information and tracking for mortgage loans."
Theoretically, MERS is a contractor/servicer (not a bank and subject to their regulations), who's job is to keep ownership records of all the registered mortgages on it's ledger. Before this, legal ownership on each piece of property was traditionally kept in each county's Real Estate Records Division books. To get around the existing laws and costs regarding official recordkeeping, the banks registered the properties in MERS's name. That way they could "buy, sell, acquire, transfer" each title multiple times, without ever having to officially notify anyone. Please keep in mind that because MERS is merely a 'holder/servicer' of the mortgages, legal ownership of each property never appears on any official county records. As a result of this "creative" bookkeeping, finding legal ownership of all MERS held properties forces interested parties to rely on private records, unavailable to the public. (Presently, it's estimated that MERS is the "owner of record", of about 60+% of all mortgages taken out in the last 10 years.)

Example:
If you have purchased or refinanced a mortgage on your home since 2000, you probably have gone through this scenario. You sign a contract with a mortgage lender/broker, only to get a letter a few months later that your contract has been "bought, sold, acquired, transferred" (legalese for "pick one") to a new servicer, and now you should send your monthly payments to these other guys. (*Note: A servicer is not the same as an owner, and does not automatically acquire legal authority to foreclose on a contract.) This means that, unbeknownst to you, you have been thrown into the financial speculation market (Wall Street), and your contract is now floating around out there somewhere. (For all you know, your house/contract could have been "acquired" by a little old trading company in China.)
Now, in addition to their opaque recordkeeping, the banks also did something else that was another 'broad interpretation' of the legal changes from the Glass-Stegall Act's removal. Because the banks wanted to have access to the contract's cash value, to go out and speculate with in the market, ... they broke the title & debt apart from each other. The title went to MERS, and the banks kept the debt obligation (money) on their books, to improve their asset portfolios. Legally, you can't separate the title & debt obligation, as they are considered one financial instrument. Again, keep in mind that these CDO's were brand new forms of market derivatives, and although they were questioned by the SEC and others, they were never really understood or challenged by regulators. (Just like Bernie Madoff's company, "they didn't really understand how it worked, but they assumed he knew what he was doing".) Well, as the old saying goes, ..."When you assume, ... you make an ass of u or me."
Jumping ahead, as you are no doubt very aware, we were all effected by the September 2008 meltdown in the banking industry. The housing market's overblown bubble had burst, and the banks were madly scrambling to justify their negative books to their investors. Congress decided to declare these very same banks (who had lost more money in speculative 'hedging' than they actually had) "too big to fail", so they voted a bailout funding called TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program). This taxpayer money provided the banks with a giant propping-up of their asset portfolios, but now they were faced with having to show just exactly what speculative trading they had been doing all along in the markets. As a result, to justify the 'air' (existing just on paper) asset amounts they had been running on for quite some time, they started foreclosing on anything that they could lay their hands on, to obtain 'real' assets. (Haven't you wondered why there are so many banks going under these days?)
Here is where the original changes they made, to avoid normal costs of doing business in the real estate industry, came back to bite them. Since they had re-written normal procedure, and intentionally created new rules of acquiring (and holding) all those mortgage contracts on their books, they soon became aware of a technicality which they failed to address when this all started. When they separated the title from the debt in the original monetary instruments (contracts), to play it fast and loose in the market, they effectively broke the contracts, making them null and void. The people who signed these original contracts never discussed, or knowingly approved of, this massive speculation of their homes. And even if the MERS element was present in the original contract, I assure you that the homeowners didn't understand exactly who this company was, or what this really meant in the long run.
Personally, I was very surprised when I pulled out my copy of my original refinancing contract, and found MERS very prominently placed in the document. When I signed the document in 2007 I was never told what they intended to do with it, and looking back now, I realize that I was set-up from the very beginning. As a matter of fact, if any of you have a mortgage on your home, I would bet that if you looked up your property's deed/title on the County Real Estate Records, you would find MERS listed as the 'holder of record'. And this playing fast and loose with the rules wasn't just by one or two banks, but was industry wide, and became standard operating procedure throughout the decade for most of them. The lure of easy money became too great a temptation for them to pass up, and the rest of us hadn't figured out their complicated debt instruments yet. As I said before, neither the Treasury or SEC regulators had a good idea of what was going on, so what chance did the rest of us have.
Now, here we are considered a non-judicial foreclosure state
(about half of all states fall into this category). This means that banks can file some general paperwork, and effective seize a piece of property without ever seeing the inside of a courtroom, much less having to prove ownership in a judicial/legal setting. Even though basic foreclosure documents say you have the right to question their authority to do this, the only way to actually bring them into a legally binding venue, is to file a civil lawsuit against them. (*Note: This does not automatically stop them from seizing and selling your home out from under you, because our courts are massively backed-up with civil cases to be heard. Since it could easily take more than a year before your case comes up in the backlog, banks can foreclose, sell your property, and be long gone before the issue ever has a real hearing in a legal setting.)
Across the country the banks have unleashed a cadre of lawyers to fight the issues addressed here, and we are just now seeing Federal rulings coming down on the subject, but these are from civil cases filed back in 2005 & 2006. It takes so long to crawl through the court system, that by the time a decision is finally made, there is virtually no way for the original homeowners to reclaim their property. The best the courts can do is fine the banks for a monetary settlement, as compensation to this outrageous behavior. And, since most of the people affected by this (due to our depressive economic state) are not in a position to hire a lawyer, much less wait out the court system's sluggishness, they are forced to accept defeat against the behemoth banks, and lose the years of hard won sweat equity in their homesteads, without ever knowing what hit them.
I urge you to honestly consider not only voting for this 90 day foreclosure moratorium, but to address the underlying legal issues presented here. The courts can only rule on the laws they have been given by the county and state governments, and until this matter has been truly addressed by those entities, the backdoors and loopholes in our present system will not be effectively closed. Since these governmental bodies have been established to represent the rights of the people, you are ethically charged with looking into the matter with all due diligence. Beyond the compassionate empathy you might feel for the people who find themselves in this life altering dilemma, you must seriously look at the facts of the matter, and delve deeply into the shadows of these banking practices so pervasively rampant in our society today.
Suggested sites for further information:
http://foreclosuredefensenationwide.com/
http://www.chinkinthearmor.net/

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