Actually, toilet paper is a real, and useful, product. Even the Koch Brothers make a lot of it. (saving that joke for a later ALEC diary).
In fact, the paper your home loan or mortgage is written on may be less useful, as in, I don't advise wiping your ass with it. This is going to sound like something we've all heard before, I know, but there's some new information just out today that I'll clue you in on below the filagree d'orange.
Many readers of Kos (here come the comments) are just plain done with hearing about the housing crisis (didja hear, we're out of the woods, we're in Housing Recovery©™®, according to our Prez),... many more of you are convinced that people who got screwed out of their houses, and there are 10 million or so of those neighbors of yours, well, they were just greedy dumbasses who don't know what the meaning of a Contract is. They got what they deserved.
If those of you in that category can put aside those feelings for just a moment, and focus for a bit on things like, well, evidence; rule of law; common law; real estate law; common sense; and chain of custody, you just might have an AhHa! moment of your own. Dave Dayen, currently of Salon and previously at FDL tells the story:
f you know about foreclosure fraud, the mass fabrication of mortgage documents in state courts by banks attempting to foreclose on homeowners, you may have one nagging question: Why did banks have to resort to this illegal scheme? Was it just cheaper to mock up the documents than to provide the real ones? Did banks figure they simply had enough power over regulators, politicians and the courts to get away with it? (They were probably right about that one.)Szymoniak was featured in a 60 Minutes episode way back in April of 2011, as she described her struggles and resulting research into robosigning...
A newly unsealed lawsuit, which banks settled in 2012 for $95 million, actually offers a different reason, providing a key answer to one of the persistent riddles of the financial crisis and its aftermath. The lawsuit states that banks resorted to fake documents because they could not legally establish true ownership of the loans when trying to foreclose.
This reality, which banks did not contest but instead settled out of court, means that tens of millions of mortgages in America still lack a legitimate chain of ownership, with implications far into the future. And if Congress, supported by the Obama administration, goes back to the same housing finance system, with the same corrupt private entities who broke the nation’s private property system back in business packaging mortgages, then shame on all of us.
The 2011 lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in both North and South Carolina, by a white-collar fraud specialist named Lynn Szymoniak, on behalf of the federal government, 17 states and three cities. Twenty-eight banks, mortgage servicers and document processing companies are named in the lawsuit, including mega-banks like JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citi and Bank of America.
Szymoniak used a chunk of her settlement to set up a Foundation in Palm Beach County and continues today to try to help put an end to the lawlessness that the White House, the Justice Department, many in Congress and your local court system continue to ignore. The Housing Justice Foundation's mission:
The Housing Justice Foundation is a non-profit organization in West Palm Beach, Florida, dedicated to finding alternatives to foreclosures.You can find her website here: http://thjf.org/
We are committed to telling the truth about predatory lending, fraud in the mortgage securitization process and fraud in loan documentation.
Rather than a solution to the housing crisis, foreclosures are a blunt, transient fix to a complex problem. Foreclosures destroy families, neighborhoods, and force home values down, hurting the entire community.
We support loan modifications with principal reductions to fair market value.
We believe that bank executives and securities company executives who commit crimes should be prosecuted, and that crimes were committed and continue to be committed in mortgage foreclosures nationwide and worldwide.
The rest of Dayen's story is found here http://www.salon.com/...