Taxing Wall Street Down to Size: Litigation Guidelines

The mistake I detect from those who are not faring well in court is the attempt to treat preliminary motions and hearings as opportunities to prove your entire case. Don’t talk about conspiracy and theft, talk about evidence and discovery.

every debtor is entitled to know the identity of the creditor, the full accounting for the entire obligation and all transactions arising from the transaction, and an opportunity to comply with Federal and State law requiring attempts at modification and/or mediation or settlement with the real parties in interest.
The banking system has become an agent of destruction for the gross domestic product and of impoverishment for the middle class. To be sure, it was lured into these unsavory missions by a truly insane monetary policy under which, most recently, the Federal Reserve purchased $1.5 trillion of longer-dated Treasury bonds and housing agency securities in less than a year. It was an unprecedented exercise in market-rigging with printing-press money, and it gave a sharp boost to the price of bonds and other securities held by banks, permitting them to book huge revenues from trading and bookkeeping gains.

Editor’s Note: Stockman notes the myth (lie) that “a prodigious upwelling of profitability will repair bank balance sheets and bury toxic waste from the last bubble’s collapse.” He questions whether the “profitability” will be there. I don’t question it, I know it — both for the reasons he cites and because the reality is that at least certain institution “in the loop” have tons of money and profitability “off-balance sheet” and I might add, off-shore.

According to published reports, Wall Street is “taxed” on this gorging of money at the rate of 1% while some poor bloke earning $80,000 is paying 16% just for social security, directly or indirectly. Fix the budget, cure the deficit? There it is!

The current profits reported, and the bonuses that come along with them, are being attributed widely in the press to the give-away of the federal reserve is letting them borrow at zero rates and then giving them a much higher rate for money held on deposit. While this is true all it really describes is the cover the laundering the plunder of $24 trillion back into the system where it will be moved around again producing more fees, more “profits”, and greater “liquidity” (proprietary currency).

The significance of this cannot be understated for the foreclosure litigator. We have the SEC in a 10 year confidentiality agreement with AIG so that the bailout and payment to counter-parties is being kept secret while the foreclosures proceed on obligations that have been paid in full, sometimes thirty times over. And we have the treasure trove “off-balance sheet” that was created by a secret undisclosed yield spread premium that should have investors, borrowers, and the regulators screaming. This second YSP as described recently in this blog, dwarfs any other fees, profits or other revenue or capital made during the creation stage of the mortgage mess.

The job of the litigator is to pique the interest of the judge enough to allow you to inquire about a FULL ACCOUNTING from the CREDITOR who is positively identified. Don’t ask the Judge to buy into the whole conspiracy theory aspect of the mortgage meltdown. He or she is not there to listen to “fiction.”

Just use your expert to prove there is an absence of facts and numbers such that the full accounting from debtor through creditor is not present and that under the most basic of premises, every debtor is entitled to know the identity of the creditor, the full accounting for the entire obligation and all transactions arising from the transaction, and an opportunity to comply with Federal and State law requiring attempts at modification and/or mediation or settlement with the real parties in interest.

The mistake I detect from those who are not faring well in court is the attempt to treat preliminary motions and hearings as opportunities to prove your entire case. Don’t talk about conspiracy and theft, talk about evidence and discovery.

Don’t ask the Judge to accept the idea that all these big name banks and other entities are thieves or interlopers, ask the Judge to accept the premise that you have alleged that the real creditor is not present, not represented, and that this action is in derogation of that creditor. Talk about your attempts to identify the creditor (investors) and the stonewalling you have received. Talk about your attempts to get a consistent complete accounting for the obligation and your inability to get it.

TALK ABOUT YOUR ATTEMPTS TO FIND AN ACTUAL DECISION MAKER (CREDITOR) WHOM YOU COULD SPEAK WITH AND ATTEMPT RECONCILIATION, MODIFICATION OR SETTLEMENT. 

January 20, 2010
Op-Ed Contributor

Taxing Wall Street Down to Size

By DAVID STOCKMAN

WHILE supply-side catechism insists that lower taxes are a growth tonic, the theory also argues that if you want less of something, tax it more. The economy desperately needs less of our bloated, unproductive and increasingly parasitic banking system. In this respect, the White House appears to have gone over to the supply side with its proposed tax on big banks, as it scores populist points against the banksters, too.

Not surprisingly, the bankers are already whining, even though the tax would amount to a financial pinprick — a levy of only 0.15 percent on the debts (other than deposits) of the big financial conglomerates. Their objections are evidence that the administration is on the right track.

Make no mistake. The banking system has become an agent of destruction for the gross domestic product and of impoverishment for the middle class. To be sure, it was lured into these unsavory missions by a truly insane monetary policy under which, most recently, the Federal Reserve purchased $1.5 trillion of longer-dated Treasury bonds and housing agency securities in less than a year. It was an unprecedented exercise in market-rigging with printing-press money, and it gave a sharp boost to the price of bonds and other securities held by banks, permitting them to book huge revenues from trading and bookkeeping gains.

Meanwhile, by fixing short-term interest rates at near zero, the Fed planted its heavy boot squarely in the face of depositors, as it shrank the banks’ cost of production — their interest expense on depositor funds — to the vanishing point.

The resulting ultrasteep yield curve for banks is heralded, by a certain breed of Wall Street tout, as a financial miracle cure. Soon, it is claimed, a prodigious upwelling of profitability will repair bank balance sheets and bury toxic waste from the last bubble’s collapse. But will it?

In supplying the banks with free deposit money (effectively, zero-interest loans), the savers of America are taking a $250 billion annual haircut in lost interest income. And the banks, after reaping this ill-deserved windfall, are pleased to pronounce themselves solvent, ignoring the bad loans still on their books. This kind of Robin Hood redistribution in reverse is not sustainable. It requires permanently flooding world markets with cheap dollars — a recipe for the next bubble and financial crisis.

Moreover, rescuing the banks yet again, this time with a steeply sloped yield curve (that is, cheap short-term money and more expensive long-term rates), is not even a proper monetary policy action. It is a vast and capricious reallocation of national income, which would be hooted down in the halls of Congress, were it properly brought to a vote.

National economic policy has come to this absurd pass because for decades the Fed has juiced the banking system with excessive reserves. With this monetary fuel, the banks manufactured, aggressively at first and then recklessly, a tide of new loans and deposits. When Wall Street’s “heart attack” struck in September 2008, bank liabilities had reached 100 percent of gross domestic product — double the ratio of a few decades earlier.

This was a measurement of the perilous extent to which bad investments, financed by debt, had come to distort the warp and woof of the economy. Behind the worthless loans stands a vast assemblage of redundant housing units, shopping malls, office buildings, warehouses, tanning salons and fast food restaurants. These superfluous fixed assets had, over the past decade, given rise to a hothouse economy of jobs that have now vanished. Obviously, the legions of brokers, developers, appraisers, contractors, tradesmen and decorators who created the bad investments are long gone. But now the waitresses, yoga instructors, gardeners, repairmen, sales clerks, inventory managers, office workers and lift-truck drivers once thought needed to work at these places are disappearing into the unemployment statistics, as well.

The baleful reality is that the big banks, the freakish offspring of the Fed’s easy money, are dangerous institutions, deeply embedded in a bull market culture of entitlement and greed. This is why the Obama tax is welcome: its underlying policy message is that big banking must get smaller because it does too little that is useful, productive or efficient.

To argue, as some conservatives surely will, that a policy-directed shrinking of big banking is an inappropriate interference in the marketplace is to miss a crucial point: the big Wall Street banks are wards of the state, not private enterprises. During recent quarters, for instance, the preponderant share of Goldman Sachs’ revenues came from trading in bonds, currencies and commodities.

But these profits were not evidence of Mr. Market doing God’s work, greasing the wheels of commerce and trade by facilitating productive financial transactions. In fact, they represented the fruits of hyperactive gambling in the Fed’s monetary casino — a place where the inside players obtain their chips at no cost from the Fed-controlled money markets, and are warned well in advance, by obscure wording changes in the Fed’s policy statements, about any pending shift in the gambling odds.

To be sure, the most direct way to cure the banking system’s ills would be to return to a rational monetary policy based on sensible interest rates, an end to frantic monetization of federal debt and a stable exchange value for the dollar. But Ben Bernanke, the Fed chairman, and his posse are not likely to go there, believing as they do that central banking is about micromanaging aggregate demand — asset bubbles and a flagging dollar be damned. Still, there can be no doubt that taxing big bank liabilities will cause there to be less of them. And that’s a start.

David Stockman, a director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan, is working on a book about the financial crisis.

10 Responses

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  3. Miriam
    you stand your ground!! good4u ; ]
    it is very consuming ; [
    “yes your paranoid ” and for good reason, you’ll live to fight another day.
    when 80% of who & what you deal with is inept ,just expect they to screw it up, & they do!
    my motto …fuk em

  4. We have no idea why these documents were sealed, as a matter of fact, the sealed or missintg documents were all our motions since the case started , notices, and orders of sale.

    Today, we had another surprise. The Judge again filed on ECF an OOPS .. amended notice of sale back to the February 22, 2007. There was no explanation at all why or based on what did the Court decided to decline my motion to vacate. This Judge has submitted three orders, all mixed up. This time the order was stamped signed with a different font.

    We asked the Court Clerk about these issues, but her response was not very useful. First she said quote,
    ” If document appears block it is because there is nothing attached to support the entries and there is no document to see”. Later we asked her that if there are no documents to support, how can these documents dissapeared when we were able to see all of them before. Again, she responded in a very unfriendly tone that nothing has been blocked, and if I cannot open the motions that were there before is because now the document does not exists that could support the entry. The entry was made for information only.

    We are Pro se now and planning to file a motion to clarify and request a rehearing.

    Our case is a whole mess, with missing documents, dates that don’t match with entries. Judge signature looks completely different on three orders, the Plaintiff has requested sale dates without court order, etc. etc. etc.

    We talked to the Judge about all the inconsistencies and he says “I don’t see any fraud” We talked to our previous attorney and he kept saying that we are paranoics and withdrew from our case because he refused to prepare a re hearing, indicating that the Judge would not approve it and the motion could insult him.

    This is a nightmare which is consuming our life, health and energy, but we will keep fighting until we find justice.

    Thank You
    Miriam

  5. Miriam
    why are these docs “sealed” , I would think if you are a party to this case you are entitled to these docs. i dont know …but this smells…unfresh!

  6. well said Neil!
    wtf .. “We have the SEC in a 10 year confidentiality agreement with AIG so that the bailout and payment to counter-parties is being kept secret while the foreclosures proceed on obligations that have been paid in full, sometimes thirty times over” a little to revealing is the tale of AIG?! How can this “confidentiality agreement” be justified & by whom? NO MORE SECRECY.
    YES I am …ANGRY

  7. To Dan

    According to the cases you give as example regarding the Judge Order could you interpret if my situation is similar to what you describe? A;lthough my case does not have the word VOID my opinion is that it can be considered as VOID.

    For example, I had a hearing on July 27th where the Judge rescheduled the sale date until November 25th 2009 to give us time to negotiate and go to mediation which by the way, resulted Impasse.

    On November 23, 2009 (one day before the sale) We had an emergency meeting where the Judge Ordered sale for Nov. 24th to be postponed until further order of the Court.

    On November 25th we had another hearing to set aside judgment and reset sale date. The Judge denied motion to vacate judgment and rescheduled the sale until January 25th, 2010 and had plaintiff counsel prepare a draft to deliver it to the Judge and to our Attorney for their approval. The Draft would then be sent to the Judge to be signed . Instead, it did not happened this way.
    On March 12, 2010 we had another hearing , this time for attorney withdrawal . This same date the Judge realized that the draft order the Plaintiff had submitted to vacate judgment and reset sale for January 25th was still on the Judge computer , but was never submitted. The Judge decided this same day to complete the draft order denying the Motion To Vacate, but rescheduling sale for February 22, 2010, in view that the order was never submitted to us on time and also to allow us some time to find an attorney. This same day we noticed that the order was filed at the Clerk Court, and wondered why it was sent so fast, when the Court in Florida at least, should give five days before the Judge signs the Order. Another strange thing was that the Judge’s signature looked different from his previous documents and it appeared to be photocopied , (not handwritten by him directly on the paper)

    But there is still more, Next day, November 13rth we received notice on ECF that there was another order supposedly from the Judge with the same copied strange signature. This time the order had changed the date from February 22, back to January 25th again and no mention of what happened to the sale order for February 22, 2010 which is next Monday! As you can imagine, we were terrified and could not understand why this Judge would do anything like this. We immediately faxed the Judge Assistant ito inform this terrible irregularity.

    Next day, November 14th since we had not received any response from the JA or the Judge. we checked the ECF and to our surprise again found two entries (sealed ) one entry read Sale Date January 25th and the other read Sale Date February 22, 2010. After going thru our whole history court file we noticed that several files were sealed as wel and removed by the Court.(?????????)

    Today we opened Neil’s Blog and found like magic that you were writing about your concerns on VOID Orders.

    We ask, (If you or someone who reads this could answer): Is this considered forgery from the Counsel attorney? or could we consider this as a VOID order.
    Has anyone or you Dan seen anything like this? The Judge using photocopy of his signature and files in two consecutive orders and two consecutive days contradicting each Other?

    Today we are in Panic trying to find out what we can do in the event that the house is sold ilegally.

    Can we file a motion to void sale order and request for a rehearing?

    This smells like FRAUD ! ! ! !

  8. This information is not related to foreclosures, but it is related to orders issued by a judge. It seems to confirm what Neil has stated all along – that even though homes are foreclosed upon and “sold”, the foreclosed homeowner is STILL THE OWNER!

    Also, check out this statement:

    A void order may be challenged in any court, at any time, and even by THIRD PARTIES

    This statement says that I could file a lawsuit if you get foreclosed on and a judge issues an order that is void.

    Legal

    1.
    That the United States Supreme Court has clearly, and repeatedly, held that any judge who acts without jurisdiction is engaged in an act of treason. U.S. v. Will, 449 U.S. 200, 216, 101, S. Ct. 471, 66 L.Ed. 2d 392, 406 (1980): Cohens v. Virginia, 19 U.S. (6 Wheat) 264, 404, 5 L.Ed 257 (1821).

    2.
    That The United States Supreme Court, in Twining v. New Jersery, 211 U.S. 78, 29 S.Ct. 14, 24, (1908), stated that “Due Process requires that the court which assumes to determine the rights of parties shall have jurisdiction.”; citing Old Wayne Mut. Life Assoc. V. McDonough, 204 U. S. 8, 27 S. Ct. 236 (1907); Scott v McNeal, 154 U.S. 34, 14, S. Ct. 1108 (1894); Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U.S. 714, 733 (1877).

    3.
    Due Process is a requirement of the U.S. Constitution. Violation of the United States Constitution by a judge deprives that person from acting as a judge under the law. He/She is acting as a private person, and not in the capacity of being a judge (and, therefore, has no jurisdiction).

    4.
    The state Supreme Courts have held that those who aid, abet, advise, act upon and execute the order of a judge who acts without jurisdiction are equally guilty. They are equally guilty of a crime against the U.S. Government.

    VOIDABLE V. VOID ORDERS
    5.
    A voidable order is an order that must be declared void by a judge to be void; a void order is an order issued without jurisdiction by a judge and is void ab initio and does not have to be declared void by a judge to be void. Only an inspection of the record of the case showing that the judge was without jurisdiction or violated a person’s due process rights, or where fraud was involved in the attempted procurement of jurisdiction, is sufficient for an order to be void. Potenz Corp. v. Petrozzini, 170 Ill. App. 3d 617, 525 N.E. 2d 173, 175 (1988). In instances herein, the law has stated that the orders are void ab initio and not voidable because they are already void.

    6.
    There is a misconception by some attorneys and judges that only a judge may declare an order void, but this is not the law: (1) there is no statute nor case law that supports this position, and (2) should there be any case law that allegedly supported this argument, that case would be directly contrary to the law established by the U.S. Supreme Court in Valley v. Northern Fire & Marine Ins. Co., 254 U.S. 348, 41 S. Ct. 116 (1920) as well as other state courts, e.g. by the Illinois Supreme Court in People v. Miller. Supra. A party may have a court vacate a void order, but the void order is still void ab initio, whether vacated or not; a piece of paper does not determine whether an order is void, it just memorializes it, makes it legally binding and voids out all previous orders returning the case to the date prior to action leading to void ab initio.

    7.
    This principle of law was stated by the U.S. Supreme Court as “Courts are constituted by authority and they cannot go beyond that power delegated to them. If they act beyond that authority, and certainly in contravention of it, their judgments and orders are regarded as nullities. They are not voidable, but simply VOID, AND THIS IS EVEN PRIOR TO REVERSAL.” [Emphasis added]. Vallely v. Northern Fire and Marine Ins. Co., 254 U.S. 348, 41 S. Ct. 116 (1920). See also Old Wayne Mut. I. Assoc. v. McDonough, 204 U.S. 8, 27 S.Ct. 236 (1907); Williamson v. Berry, 8 How. 495, 540, 12 L. Ed, 1170, 1189, (1850); Rose v. Himely, 4 Cranch 241, 269, 2 L.Ed. 608, 617 (1808).

    8.
    Pursuant to the Vallely court decision, a void order does not have to be reversed by any court to be a void order. Courts have also held that, since a void order is not a final order, but is in effect no order at all, it cannot even be appealed. Courts have held that a void decision is not in essence a decision at all, and never becomes final. Consistent with this holding, in 1991, the U.S. Supreme Court stated that, “Since such jurisdictional defect deprives not only the initial court but also the appellate court of its power over the case or controversy, to permit the appellate court to ignore it. …[Would be an] unlawful action by the appellate court itself.” Freytag v. Commissioner, 501 U.S. 868 (1991); Miller, supra. Following the same principle, it would be an unlawful action for a court to rely on an order issued by a judge who did not have subject-matter jurisdiction and therefore the order he issued was Void ab initio.

    9.
    A void order may be challenged in any court, at any time, and even by third parties. A void order has no legal force or effect. As one court stated, a void order is equivalent to a blank piece of paper.

    VIOLATION OF THE CONSTITUTION
    10.
    While a Judge may issue orders to control his court, he has no lawful authority to issue any order which violates the Supreme Law of the Land. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that all entities have the mandatory right of an adequate, complete, effective, fair, full meaningful and timely access to the court. The Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides that the interest of parents in the care, custody and control of their children, is perhaps the oldest of the fundamental liberty interests recognized by the court, Troxel V. Granville, USC, (2000). “Parents have a liberty interest of the custody of their children, hence, any deprivation of that interest by the state must be accomplished by procedures meeting the requirements of due process.” Hooks v Hooks, United States Court of Appeals (1985). Indeed, the right to rear one’s children is so firmly rooted in our culture that the Unites States Supreme Court has held it to be a fundamental liberty interest protected by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Hawk v. Hawk, Tennessee Supreme Court, (1993). The Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment guarantees Due Process and Equal Protection to all. “No state shall deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” United States Constitutional Amendment XIV and adopted by State of Indiana Constitution.
    “Choices about marriage, family life, upbringing of children are among associational rights ranked as of basic importance in our society, rights sheltered by the Fourteenth Amendment against State’s unwarranted usurpation, disregard, or disrespect. U.S.C.A. Constitutional Amendment 14.
    It seems that in this case, Sanjari v Gratzol (previously Sanjari), the court made an issue of clear and convincing bias by repeatedly delaying, and eventually canceling (effectively reversing its own decision on) the full custody hearing set for February 12 & 13, 2003, effectively deciding in favor of the Petitioner/Mother who had been seeking some of those delays. It also made the unethical and illegal decision to reverse its own order (of hearing set for February 12 & 13, 2003) by canceling the set hearing. This reversal by the Court was prompted by its illegal and unethical conduct in protecting, and covering up for, its own misconducts and violations and that of another judge, Terry Shewmaker, who had been subpoenaed to testify by the Respondent/Father. The Court tried to muzzle the Respondent/Father by issuing an illegal (by IN & US laws—see previous filings) Mediation and Counseling Order to prevent a public hearing of the custody case which the Court and their “brethren” judges would have found embarrassing. The Court further denied the Respondent/Father the opportunity, as required by the U.S. Constitution, to examine and challenge the underlying reasons for its decision, hence violating the US Constitution with the result that that decision is VOID (see above).
    The Court, moreover, denied the due process rights of the minor children by canceling the custody hearing, and endangered their safety and well-being. Again, in violation of the US Constitution and IN and US laws.
    Similarly, any other Court or entity insisting to uphold such an illegal order would be in violation of the US Constitution.

    FAMILY LIFE VIOLATIONS
    11.
    The construction of a constitutional theory which will protect various aspects of family life under Section 1983 rightly continues to command a good deal of judicial interest.
    The right of a parent to raise his children has long been recognized as a fundamental constitutional right, “far more precious than property rights.” Stanley v. Illinois, 405 U.S. 645, 651 (1972), quoting May v. Anderson, 345, U.S. 528, 533 (1953); Skinner v. Oklahoma, 316 U.S. 535, 541, (1942); Meyer v Nebraska, 262 U.S. 390, 399 (1923), See, e.q. Castigno v Wholean, 239 Conn. 336 (1996); In re Alexander V., 223 Conn. 557 (1992). In Re: May V Anderson (1953) 345 US 528, 533, 73 S. Ct. 840, 843 97 L. Ed. 1221, 1226, This case involved a mother stripped of her rights without the right to utter a single word in her defense. The order was originally granted for 6 months in which the court allowed the mother to “fight” for her rights back, but kept getting delayed so that the child would incur more time with the father. This case was reversed upon appeal, and also gave rise to the statute citing that, Presumption (750 ILCS 5/603) “A court may consider the period of time that a child has spent with a parent by virtue of a temporary custody order but there is no presumption in favor of the existing custodian under 750 ILCS 5/602 as there is in modification cases under 750 ILCS 5/610. In Re Hefer, 282 Ill. App. 3d 73, 217 Ill. Dec 701, 667 N.E. 2nd 1094 (4 Dist. 1996). Obviously, the argument is that one parent may manipulate the system to prolong proceedings that he/she may think there is an automatic award of custody. The 602 standards still are mandated to be applied, one of them including the wishes of the children as well as other issues such as safety and well-being of the children (self-mutilation, in this case due to psychological and/or other abuse in the Petitioner/Mother’s residence).

    Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and this is not legal advice.

    Dan Edstrom
    dmedstrom@hotmail.com

  9. I think foreign nationals who have been impacted by this economic genocide should to file lawsuits civil and criminal charges in Countries that they have nationalities. (Spain, England, Switzerland Mexico Brazil Israel etc….) and when these guys go to europe or asia or any country and they get arrested on the spot (Judges Bankster, County Recorder Title Companies Employees of Bank of America etc, Ken Lewis etc…). This will be another angle to enlighten our benevelont government to do the right thing and punish the criminals not the victims.

  10. Thanks for dissecting that op-ed. You can’t even save for something like the good old days. You have to go into debt because asset prices inflate faster than savings. Its the same debt that was packaged as AAA after being leveraged upon leveraged. But to get people into debt and to create these AAA products – because it was mathematically impossible to save for a home – toxic mortgage products were pushed.

    “Treasury entitled Curbing Predatory Home Mortgage Lending noted that a very limited number of borrowers benefit from HOEPA’s protections because of the high thresholds that a loan must exceed in order for the protections to apply. The report also found that certain terms of subprime loans appear to be harmful or abusive in practically all cases. ”
    http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/speeches/chairman/spjan1410.html
    – Statement of Sheila C. Bair, Room 1100, Longworth House Office Building
    January 14, 2010

    And of course the Fed did nothing in 2000 with that report until it all came down now. “Your winnings sir”. Reflating the housing bubble will just leave us even more jobless. I recommend the new book “The Buyout of America”. No wonder the bonuses are so big.

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