The Bank Robbers Strike Again
A while back, I wrote a short, satirical play — “Bank Robbers” — about how Wells Fargo rips off consumers through excessive overdraft fees. What I didn’t know at the time was that the banks have been resorting to far more outlandish tactics with respect to foreclosures. Amy Goodman reports:
Back in February 2009, Ohio Rep. Marcy Kaptur advised homeowners to force lenders to “produce the note.” People facing foreclosure were being taken to court while the bank alleging default couldn’t even prove it owned the mortgage. The mortgage document often had been lost in the tangled web of financial wheeling and dealing. Kaptur told me: “Millions and millions of families are getting foreclosure notices. They don’t have proper legal representation … possession is nine-tenths of the law; therefore, stay in your property.”
If you stay in your home, your mortgage lender may break in. Nancy Jacobini of Orange County, Fla., was inside her home when she heard an intruder. Thinking she was being burglarized, she called 911. Police determined the intruder was actually someone sent by JPMorgan Chase to change the locks. And Jacobini wasn’t even in foreclosure!
The difference between JPMorgan Chase and your average thug, of course, is that the government occasionally prosecutes the latter. As for the government’s response to the former, here is what Paul Krugman has to say:
True to form, the Obama administration’s response has been to oppose any action that might upset the banks, like a temporary moratorium on foreclosures while some of the issues are resolved. Instead, it is asking the banks, very nicely, to behave better and clean up their act. I mean, that’s worked so well in the past, right?
The robbers, it would seem, have paid off the cops.