Foreclose This: There’s More Than Robo Signatures To Blame For The Ongoing Foreclosure Scandal
by Danny Schechter
October 11, 2010
The other day, during an interview on Al Jazeera, I was asked if I was frustrated because my warnings and worries about the financial meltdown and foreclosure crisis, first aired in 2006, have been ignored so long.
The excruciating lesson I learned is that it takes time for a problem to turn into an issue and, then, an issue to get attention, to move from the business section to the news section, from the back of the paper to page one. It is always hard to predict which story will grab the attention of a news media that has not paid sufficient attention to these issues for years. What connect for editors are usually a small matter and a symbolic one, a story that’s not just new but dripping with the appearance of injustice or hypocrisy?
Once some truth slips through the cracks, a flood threatens like the toxic sludge undoing parts of Hungary.
The fact that millions of Americans were having their homes foreclosed on by a shadowy industry agency using robo signature machines without reviewing the details of the alleged default has become the scandal dujure. Committing this fraud is the Mortgages Electronic Registration System, (MERS) the company the big banks hired to do their dirty work with the appearance of computer-driven semi-official efficiency.
As they churned out and executed foreclosures (while making more than a pretty penny in the process,) they, in effect, executed homeowners with the sanction and support of kangaroo courts. As soon as the Judges received their impeccably prepared documents—like Bernie Madoff’s meticulously written monthly statements fooling his investors—the orders went out to throw the deadbeats out.
One day, and for a quick second, your home sweet homes’ fate is in court before some Judge that has received contributions from the industry, and, the next, the sheriff is outside your door with a goon squad to move your stuff into the street. It has been a cruel, stealth and systematic process.
Explains Naked Capitalism:
“banks have become so powerful in Florida that they have managed to get what amount to kangaroo foreclosure courts created. Not surprisingly, the assembly line imitation of justice railroads borrowers, and prevents legitimate grievances from being heard.
It turns out that banks in that state are so confident of their above the law status that they’ve also taken to casually changing the locks on and entering homes they don’t own, meaning haven’t foreclosed upon. This has become sufficiently common that the local press has taken notice.”