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According to the Collins English Dictionary 10th Edition fraud can be defined as: "deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage".[1] In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual; the related adjective is fraudulent. The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation. Defrauding people or entities of money or valuables is a common purpose of fraud, but there have also been fraudulent "discoveries", e.g. in science, to gain prestige rather than immediate monetary gain
*As defined in Wikipedia

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

It Was Just My Opinion and I Could Be Wrong...And I was

A promotional Washington Mutual "Whoo hoo...Image via WikipediaShortly after I posted my Holiday wishes to everyone in the Message Board above, I came across this article by Gretchen Morgenson in the New York Times about the recent settlement between the FDIC and WAMU - which was acquired by J.P. Morgan/Chase.

Fair Game
Slapped Wrists at WaMu
WHEN Washington Mutual collapsed in 2008, it was the largest bank failure in American history. So the $64.7 million settlement struck last week by federal banking regulators and three former WaMu executives seems like small potatoes indeed. 
Worse, most of the money didn’t even come from the former executives’ pockets. Instead, it came from directors’ and officers’ liability insurance policies paid for by the bank. 
 WAMU - Washington Mutual - was one of the biggest players in the mortgage crisis which led to the almost total failure of our financial system and has certainly caused the destruction of our economy, our middle class and our housing market.
“Pretty soft,” is how Senator Carl Levin, the Michigan Democrat who heads the Senate’s permanent subcommittee on investigations, characterized the settlement in an interview on Friday.
“Washington Mutual Bank epitomizes everything that went wrong with the banking industry and contributed to the financial crisis, so the F.D.I.C. was right to go after the bank’s leadership,” Mr. Levin said in a statement issued on Tuesday. “Former WaMu executives Killinger, Rotella and Schneider are truly the 1 percent: they got bonus upon bonus when the bank did well, but when they led the bank to collapse, insurance and indemnity clauses shielded them from paying any penalty for their wrongdoing.”
Yes, "pretty soft" indeed!  Considering the fact that the three former executives made millions for themselves while running their company into the ground.  "Pretty soft" considering the fact that WAMU under their leadership and direction probably - or allegedly (more politically correct) participated in many of the illegal activities the entire banking system participated in to create the housing boom to bust cycle.

On the heels of SEC charges against the former heads of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (see related here) one would think - as I did - that more charges with real teeth would be forthcoming.  I for one was hopeful that these pending charges from SEC would open the door to prosecution of CEO's responsible the many (criminal) activities in what I consider to have been an organized "criminal" activity that should have been and still should be prosecuted under RICO.

I was wrong.

While our politicians play games for their own job creation and preservation by not extending the tax cuts and other important legislation that would truly help the people - our regulators are still protecting the "guilty" allowing them to continue to live in the lap of luxury while millions in THIS  country will go hungry and homeless this holiday season.
Although the settlement probably disappoints anyone hoping executives might be held personally accountable, it does illustrate what regulators are up against when litigating these matters.
I am really not sure what "regulators are up against when litigating these matters" other then self preservation and continuing to feed the general public a lot of BS in an attempt to show us that they care and are doing something.
Mr. Levin’s dismay over the settlement probably arises from his deep knowledge of WaMu and its practices. After all, he led the Senate’s 2010 investigation into the origins of the financial crisis, producing a 650-page report on actions taken by WaMu, Goldman Sachs and the credit ratings agencies, among others.
Mr. Levin’s office referred the findings to prosecutors for possible follow-upNot much has happened since.(emphasis added)
"Dismay" seems to produce paralysis when not even a Senator seems to be powerless against those his colleagues deemed to be Too Big To Fail.

The damning report detailed WaMu’s questionable operations as well as those of its regulator, the Office of Thrift Supervision. That feckless agency was responsible for overseeing three of the biggest disasters in mortgage lending history: Countrywide Bank, IndyMac Bancorp and WaMu. Mercifully, the Dodd-Frank law put an end to the O.T.S., folding it into the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.(emphasis added)
A "damning report" detailing "questionable operations" is for some reason not enough to take legal criminal action.  My brief moment of hope for justice I spoke of just hours ago has quickly turned into despair.  It once again raises the question in my mind as to who really is running our country with powers stronger then most of the dictators we have had a hand in eliminating.
ARE the WaMu executives out of the woods? They’re getting close. Last summer, the Justice Department shut down its criminal investigation into WaMu and its officials, concluding that the evidence it had amassed “did not meet the exacting standards for criminal charges in connection with the bank’s failure.” (emphasis added) 
Those of us who are victims (I am one) of the actions of the true 1%'ers,  will once again suffer the hardships and indignity during what once was a joyous holiday season for the masses.

The Scrooges of our country have been relentless in their pursuit of their own happiness at our expense and immune to any type of justice.

I apologize for my brief encounter with optimism and hope.

I was wrong.

Read Gretchen's here

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Vote Ron Paul said...

The people want honest government and less cronyism...that's what driving this...

Ron Paul Is Now the Republican Frontrunner

Start thinking said...

Gerald Celente - Sneak Peak of the Top Trends for 2012
When asked about his new trend prediction titled ‘Battlefield USA,’ Celente responded, “It just became law.  The Bill of Rights in the United States has been abrogated.  They passed the new Defense Act and in that Defense Act they have in there, in clear language, anybody can be arrested under the National Defense Authorization Act....

“They authorized the military to go in and take anybody they feel is an enemy of the state, citizen or not, no charges, detain them indefinitely and without a civil trial.  No judge, no jury, no trial, no rights of habeas corpus.  This is what the United States has become.

Put it all together, it’s going on worldwide.  The merger of state and corporate powers is, by definition, fascism.  Now they have put the laws into place where fascism has become legalized.

The military could come into anyone’s home, anyone’s office, into anyone’s life and lock you up.  Take you away, torture you, blow your brains out and there’s no recourse at all.  They are setting us up, they are putting all of the pieces in place because when the banks close and when the economy starts crashing down, now they have the goon squads in place.

Integrity failure said...

Laurie Ferber: MF Global Chief Legal Counsel, on CFTC Global Markets Advisory Committee. Where Was She?

Close observers of the MF Global saga have been asking from the start,
where is Laurie Ferber?  Why wasn’t she called into the hearings last
week? First to the magnifying glass was Bob English who asked in his
early November essay,  “Who is Laurie Ferber of MF Global?”
 English highlighted Ms. Ferber’s extensive background, including her
directorship at Goldman Sachs & Co. (and her hand in seeking
exceptions for speculative position limits while at Goldman) her legal
career and various board work.  English reported on the details of Ms.
Ferber’s hyper lobbying activity seeking either an exception to, or
prevention of, tightening of rule 1.25 — which would disallow use of
customer funds for anything other than instruments such as US Treasury

Corrupt money said...

We begin with a new candidate running for
President of the United States in the 2012 election representing a
newly-formed party, the Justice Party. The former mayor of Salt Lake
City, Rocky Anderson,
joins us to lay out his populist, progressive third party platform that
does not rely on corporate money or the mainstream media, but instead
plans to energize grassroots people power that has emerged with the
occupy movements.

Corrupt money said...

Respect him or else? said...

Fellow Country Club Members Throw Decorum To The Wind To Thank Leon Cooperman For Giving A Voice To The Oppressed

Cooperman, 68, said in an interview that he can’t walk through the
dining room of St. Andrews Country Club in Boca Raton, Florida, without
being thanked for speaking up. At least four people expressed their
gratitude on Dec. 5 while he was eating an egg-white omelet, he said.
“You’ll get more out of me,” the billionaire said, “if you treat me with

Longbrewingcrisis said...

The Corruption of America.I've labeled these problems: The Corruption of America.

These problems manifest themselves in different ways across
institutions in all parts of our society. But at their root, they are
simply facets of the same stone. They are all part of the same essential

The corruption of America isn't happening in one part of our
country... or in one type of institution. It is happening across the
landscape of our society, in almost every institution. It's a kind of
moral decay... a kind of greed... a kind of desperate grasp for power...
And it's destroying our nation.

The Ethos of 'Getting Yours'

Americans know, in their bones, that something terrible is happening.
Maybe you can't articulate it. Maybe you don't have the statistics to
understand exactly what's going on. But my bet is, you think about it a

For me, a poignant moment of recognition came this month.

Bloomberg news published an article based on confidential sources
about how Henry Paulson, the former CEO of Goldman Sachs and the
Republican U.S. Treasury secretary during the financial crisis, held a
secret meeting with the top 20 hedge-fund managers in New York City in
late July 2008. This was about two weeks after he testified to Congress
that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were "well-capitalized."I knew for a
fact that what Paulson told Congress wasn't true. I wrote my entire
June 2008 newsletter detailing exactly why Fannie and Freddie certainly
had billions in losses that they had not yet revealed to investors –
$500 billion in losses, at least. There was no question in my mind, both
companies were insolvent – "zeros," as I explained.

Partners in lies said...

Obama and Geithner: Government, Enron-Style
 December 20, 10:06 AM ET
Jeff is one of the smartest guys on the Hill and is particularly strong on issues surrounding Wall Street and the regulatory system. In this piece, he takes apart the oft-stated mantra that what Wall Street firms did during and after the crisis was maybe unethical, but not illegal.

He takes particular aim at Barack Obama, who recently tossed that line out on 60 Minutes in what I thought was one of the real low moments of his presidency.

The notion that what Wall Street firms did was merely unethical and not illegal is not just mistaken but preposterous: most everyone who works in the financial services industry understands that fraud right now is not just pervasive but epidemic, with many of the biggest banks committing entire departments to the routine commission of fraud and perjury – every single one of the major banks, for instance, devotes significant manpower to robosigning affidavits for foreclosures and credit card judgments, acts which are openly and inarguably criminal.

Banks and hedge funds routinely withhold derogatory information about the instruments they sell, they routinely trade on insider information or ahead of their own clients’ orders, and corrupt accounting is so rampant now that industry analysts have begun to figure in estimated levels of fraud in their examinations of the public disclosures of major financial companies.

Read more:

Connect the dots said...

Father Nathan Monk tells the City Council, "We have the right to redress our government without fear of being arrested," and is nearly arrested.

Accountability sucks said...

Nomi Prins: How Many Regulators Does It Take to Screw Investors Out of $1.2B?
The most recent fallout from lack of regulatory oversight of the banking
and investing industry is the collapse of MF Global, run by former
Goldman Sachs CEO Jon Corzine. A stunning $1.2 billion in client funds
are still missing more than month after the company buckled on fears of
its leveraged bets on European debt.

Losing rights said...

Top Legal Expert: “President Obama … Says That He Can Kill [Any American
Citizen Without Any Charge and] On His Own Discretion. He Can Jail You
Indefinitely On His Own Discretion”

Losing rights said...

Top Legal Expert: “President Obama … Says That He Can Kill [Any American
Citizen Without Any Charge and] On His Own Discretion. He Can Jail You
Indefinitely On His Own Discretion”

Turley said yesterday on C-Span (starting at 15:50):

President Obama has just
stated a policy that he can have any American citizen killed without
any charge, without any review, except his own. If he’s satisfied that you are a terrorist, he says that he can kill you anywhere in the world including in the United States.
Two of his aides just … reaffirmed they believe that American citizens can be killed on the order of the President anywhere including the United States.
You’ve now got a president who says that he can kill you on his own discretion. He can jail you indefinitely on his own discretion
I don’t think the the Framers ever anticipated that [the American
people would be so apathetic]. They assumed that people would hold their
liberties close, and that they wouldn’t relax …

Strike said...

I’m Calling for a General Financial Market Strike

I have received a few emails asking if I was still content with my
decision to shut down my brokerage. Not only am I content, but after
seeing the news that broke over the weekend, I am of the considered
opinion that the entire financial blogging community should formally
call for a general financial market strike.And I’m not kidding. A
couple of things have happened regarding the MF Global mess that I
don’t think got the attention they should have because they broke over
the weekend. So let me fill you all in.

First, all notions of personal property rights were essentially
destroyed when the MF Global “trustee” began seizing customers’ gold
and silver bullion held in storage if that bullion was purchased
through contracts brokered by MF Global. In case you’re not following,
let me restate. MF Global customers who traded in precious metals and
actually took delivery and OWNED bullion, as in outright, free and
clear OWNERSHIP, complete with a warehouse receipt (aka title) with
SERIAL NUMBERS designating exactly which physical bars they OWNED, and
were PAYING RENT to STORE their own property in a “secure” VAULT,
complete with statements indicating that these storage fees were paid
TO STORE CONFISCATED by the MF Global trustee in order to feed the
gaping maw that is the MF Global “estate”.

This would be EXACTLY like if you rented a little storage space at one
of the thousands of storage facilities that dot this nation, and
stored a car there. I used to do exactly this when I had multiple
cars. Imagine the owner of the storage facility went bankrupt. Now
imagine that a “trustee” SEIZED YOUR CAR, sold it, and used YOUR
PROPERTY to feed the storage franchise owner’s BK. Nevermind that you
had an explicit RENTAL AGREEMENT and that you had receipts proving
that you were paying monthly rent on said storage space, and that you
could produce clear title to the car showing that you owned it, and
that the VIN numbers matched.

 Reply Reply to all Forward

Tweetiebird said...

Bank chased out

MF Global victims start boycott of JPMorgan
Read more:

Everbody knows said...

Matt Damon Slams Obama, Democrats: 'One Term President With Some Balls Would Have Been Better'

Matt Damon, one of Barack Obama's earliest supporters and once one of his most staunch advocates, slammed the President in the new issue of Elle Magazine.

"I've talked to a lot of people who worked for Obama at the grassroots level. One of them said to me, 'Never again. I will never be fooled again by a politician,'" Damon tells the magazine. "You know, a one-term president with some balls who actually got stuff done would have been, in the long run of the country, much better."

"I think he's rolled over to Wall Street completely. The economy has huge problems. We still have all these banks that are too big to fail. They're bigger and making more money than ever. Unemployment at 10 percent? It's terrible," he told the Independent.

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