Like Watching The Great Train Robbery in Slow Motion

MOST POPULAR ARTICLES

COMBO Title and Securitization Search, Report, Documents, Analysis & Commentary CLICK HERE TO GET COMBO TITLE AND SECURITIZATION REPORT

THIS IS LIKE WATCHING “THE GREAT TRAIN ROBBERY” IN SLOW MOTION

submitted by DCB

UnitedBank’s Cash for Keys offers to homeowners: Are the offers credible?


On Sunday January 15, 2012, frequent poster on Foreclosure Defense matters, and respected Florida foreclosure defense attorney, Mark Stopa, posted the following disclosures with respect to offers made to Florida homeowners-borrowers to give up deeds in lieu of foreclosure, possession of their homes, and releases of liability for predatory conduct—all in favor of “BankUnited” in exchange for BankUnited’s legal promises to forgive them of debt in future.


Thus UnitedBank’s financial stability and its credibility are of critical importance to homeowners’ decision-making.. If UnitedBank asserts a right or makes a promise of current right to seize, as well as future conduct, can a homeowner dare rely on those representations and promises? To answer these questions It is necessary to review UnitedBank’s recent history and associations with offshore hedge funds, and current government scrutiny focused on this particular group in recent days. What role does the Deed in Lieu play in enabling the claims they make for FDIC insurance for every house they can cause to become vacant? Is it effective public policy that effectively converts Florida and New York home value into offshore cash holding accounts?


At the end of the day, one might wonder if it is appropriate government policy to pay questionable offshore hedge funds to dispossess US homeowners—or should the FDIC money be placed in escrow until all the comparative rights are carefully verified. Even if the entity manages to push the current owner out through intimidation and abuse? Should FDIC take the incentive out of this rush?

Background: old Bank United Failed
The backdrop is significant in setting the tenor of this deal-making. The trademark “Bank United” has a tortured and unique past. Bank United suffocated from losses on its own predatory mortgage loan products. Like WAMU, AHM etc.
According to a Supplemental FDIC release dated January 26, 2011,
“•BankUnited failed because it was a badly deteriorated institution with significant problems, primarily due to heavy use of non-traditional mortgage products.
•Over 60% of the loans in BankUnited’s portfolio were pay-option arm mortgages. BankUnited (prior to failure) was the country’s second largest writer of these types of mortgages” http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/press/2009/pr09072a.html
Other predatory lenders of this ilk either went bankrupt or were acquired by Big banks. However –unique to regulated banking—the purchase of control of this subprime bank’s assets was by a syndicate of unregulated offshore hedge funds including : ”Carlyle, Blackstone and Wilbur Ross”, per Reuters as published by New York Times. http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2010/10/26/silver-lining-in-f-d-i-c-s-bankunited-deal
Ross’ syndicate had already sounded out a smaller Florida Bank target.
According to an article in South Florida Business Journal by Brian Bandell , Date: Thursday, May 21, 2009, Ross is targeting elderly Floridians to increase his access to low cost cash deposits.
“Restructuring specialist Wilbur Ross runs New York-based W.L. Ross, which is buying a majority stake in First Bank & Trust of Indiantown. Ross said that bank wouldn’t be part of BankUnited. Instead, the new holding company will have W.L. Ross, Carlyle and Blackstone as the largest investors, and the other groups as minority partners, he said.
‘While the asset side of the bank has been very problematic, Florida, because it has so many prosperous retirees, has a good deposit base,’ Ross said. ‘The growth opportunities in Florida, with internal growth and further acquisition growth, are very considerable.’”
However, the South Florida Journal report was premature. The Ross syndicate had already focused on bigger game; BankUnited.
“Palm Beach billionaire Wilbur Ross last year announced a deal to pay $7.3 million for 68 percent of the bank’s shares, but the deal later fell apart as Ross focused on his stake in much larger BankUnited of Coral Gables.” http://www.palmbeachpost.com/money/well-known-treasure-coast-bankers-plan-to-take-732059.html
GOVERNMENT ROLE IN UNITEDBANK OPERATION to January 16, 2012

The syndicate took control in mid-2009 with help from FDIC
From FDIC “open site” in respect of the end of “old” Bank United:
“II. Press Release
The FDIC has issued a press release (PR-072-2009) about the institution’s closure. If you represent a media outlet and would like information about the closure, please contact David Barr at 202-898-6992.”
May 21, 2009
According to this FDIC “Release” May 21, 2009 ; the buyout group “ownership includes WL Ross & Co. LLC; Carlyle Investment Management L.L.C.; Blackstone Capital Partners V L.P.; Centerbridge Capital Partners, L.P. LeFrak Organization, Inc; The Wellcome Trust; Greenaap Investments Ltd.; and East Rock Endowment Fund.”
The deal was generally described in that release; “BankUnited, a newly chartered federal savings bank, acquired the banking operations, including all of the nonbrokered deposits, of BankUnited, FSB, Coral Gables, Florida, in a transaction facilitated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
Bank United, FSB had assets of $12.80 billion and deposits of $8.6 billion as of May 2, 2009. The new BankUnited will assume $12.7 billion in assets and $8.3 billion in nonbrokered deposits. The FDIC and BankUnited entered into a loss-share transaction and will share in the losses on approximately $10.7 billion in assets covered under the agreement. The loss-sharing arrangement is projected to maximize returns on the covered assets by keeping them in the private sector. The agreement also is expected to minimize disruptions for loan customers as they will maintain a banking relationship. BankUnited will recapitalize the institution with $900 million in new capital.” http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/press/2009/pr09072.html

One might say that FDIC “bailed out the defunct predatory bank by guaranteeing much of its assets—home-loans? Put backs? FDIC then Media Contact: David Barr (202) 898-6992, Cell: (703) 622-4790. E-mail: dbarr@fdic.gov
The syndicate began “cashing in” on the banks assets and FDIC bailout by year-end 2010
By late 2010, barely 18 months after the FDIC bailout, press accountsrevealed BankUnited’s plans to make an Initial public offering [IPO] of common stock by the hedge fund group owners:
“… it is not going to look pretty for the F.D.I.C. when BankUnited goes public, which it can do from late next month under the deal it brokered 18 months ago. Investors including Carlyle, Blackstone and Wilbur Ross plugged $900 million of new capital into the bank. That equity is almost certain to be worth a multiple of what they paid. “ http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2010/10/26/silver-lining-in-f-d-i-c-s-bankunited-deal
FDIC’s 2009 Release is today supplemented by information relating to new ”BankUnited IPO Supplemental Fact Sheet, January 26, 2011” That further discloses the sale by the control group of shares to the public. The control group retained majority control. http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/press/2009/pr09072a.html
Per FDIC, “the initial set of investors will retain at least 67% of their initial investment in the company after the IPO.” [ibid]
However they appeared to walk away with nearly all their investment back, according to WSJ,
“…about 86% of the shares slated to be sold were from its investors. The BankUnited investors include big names such as financier Wilbur Ross and private-equity giants Blackstone Group, Carlyle and Centerbridge. Their combined take from the IPO: roughly $2.2 billion.
A caveat: The figures here are based on the shareholders’ stock holdings disclosed in BankUnited’s most recent regulatory filing. The company last night sold more shares than expected as part of the IPO – 29 million compared to the expected 26.25 million. It’s unclear for now how much of the extra stock sold came from Ross, Blackstone et al. We’ll update this post when we know more. In any case, these guys did great.


Hereinbelow is Attorney Stopa’s post;
“Bank United Offering Deficiency Waivers, Cash for Keys
by Mark Stopa Esq.
http://www.stayinmyhome.com/blog/2012/01/bank-united-offering-deficiency-waivers-cash-for-keys/

28 Responses

  1. @spitfire

    Please tell me specifics and what state you are in—iv been run over by AHMSI also———-dcbreidenbach@aol.com

    im looking to establish a “pattern of corrupt activities”

  2. What this post does not address is the infamous Wilbur Ross’s other cash cow AHMSI, which is arguably one of this countries largets “mortgage servicers”. Which translates into ~ “Let’s see how convoluted we can make the paper trail of the original mortgage on all these properties, while converting them to stocks, dividing them into “tranches”, break every known UCC law in that process, then manipulate the borrowers into believing that the mortgage still exists and continue to collect on the “payment streams” when we have already sold their NAMES and CREDIT scores to twenty five different entities incl. investors, shareholders of corporate 401k plans, and innumerous other “lending institutions” and received payments on that ONE borrowers NAME and CREDIT score literally dozens of times….but WAIT!! Thats not enough!! We want the home back too!!

    Simply because we like this PONZI scam soooooo much that we want to cause everyone to lose their homes so we can begin this little game ALL OVER AGAIN with the next batch of unsuspecting SUCKERS.

    People like Wilbur Ross have a special place in HELL waiting for them.

  3. January 19—Blackstones Response to info requests by Federal Reserve—
    “Schwarzman: None of Your Business
    Blackstone Chief Executive Objects to Having to Provide Personal Financial Information to the Fed
    http://quotes.wsj.com/BKU/interactive-chart
    By Robin Sidel
    1/20/2012 12:01:00 AM
    Stephen Schwarzman, one of Wall Street’s most prominent deal makers, is going out of his way to keep the details of his personal fortune a closely held secret.

    Blackstone Group LP is changing the structure of its investment in a Florida bank after Mr. Schwarzman, founder and chief executive of the private-equity firm, balked at providing information about his personal finances to the Federal Reserve, according to people familiar with the situation.

    Agence France-Presse/Getty ImagesStephen Schwarzman

    Blackstone is converting part of its 14.1% stake in BankUnited(BKU) Inc. to nonvoting preferred stock, these people said. The deal will shrink its voting stake to less than 10%, pushing the New York firm below the level at which the Fed requires personal financial data from the Florida bank’s owners.

    It isn’t clear why Mr. Schwarzman is sensitive about providing such information. The longstanding Fed rule is in place to allow the regulator to gauge the safety of banks by evaluating the financial resources of their owners. The financial information gathered about a bank’s owners isn’t available to the public, even if requested under the Freedom of Information Act, according to people familiar with Fed policies.

    Many details of Mr. Schwarzman’s personal wealth already have been disclosed, particularly since Blackstone went public in 2007. At that time, the company reported that it had paid Mr. Schwarzman $398.3 million in 2006.

    Mr. Schwarzman ranks as the 66th richest American, with an estimated net worth of $4.7 billion, according to Forbes. He is tied for that spot with real-estate mogul Sam Zell and Robert Rowling, an oil tycoon who also owns the Omni hotel chain, according to the Forbes ranking.

    Principals of the private-equity firms WL Ross & Co., Carlyle Group and Centerbridge Partners, all of which also have more than 10% stakes in BankUnited, are willing to provide their personal financial information, according to the people familiar with the situation.

    The conversion of the Blackstone shares, expected to be finalized in the next few days, also will free up BankUnited to do business with any of the companies that are held in the private-equity firm’s investment portfolio, including the Hilton hotel chain. Regulators prohibit BankUnited from engaging with the scores of companies owned by the Blackstone and the other private-equity firms that hold stakes of more than 10%.

    Blackstone’s move is the latest sign of tension between private-equity investors and regulators. Private-equity firms have invested billions of dollars in the banking industry since the financial crisis, pumping capital into lenders crushed by soured loans. At the same time, executives have chafed at regulatory restrictions on bank ownership and their business relationships.

    The vast wealth of the private-equity industry is attracting attention in the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Candidate Mitt Romney has come under attack from his opponents for his role as founder of Bain Capital, a private-equity firm that has reaped billions of dollars in profits from investments. Mr. Romney also has taken heat for not releasing his personal tax returns.

    Private Eyes

    Blackstone’s CEO already discloses some of his assets, but Stephen Schwarzman balked at a Fed rule that requires more detailed personal financial data.

    $3.6 billion Current value of his Blackstone holdings

    $350,000 2010 base salary

    $6.4 million All other compensation

    Mr. Schwarzman’s shyness about his fortune comes nearly five years after his 60th birthday party was pilloried as a sign of Wall Street excess. The event, which took place at New York’s historic Park Avenue Armory, included performances by Rod Stewart and Patti Labelle.

    Blackstone’s move will cap an unusual week of activity at BankUnited, an $11 billion lender that has 90 branches across Florida. On Wednesday, the Miami Lakes bank abruptly ended a short-lived auction to sell itself after receiving two bids that fell below its expectations.

    BankUnited was acquired by a group of private-equity firms, along with New York banker John Kanas, after it failed in May 2009. The investors bought BankUnited for $945 million. They then received $2.2 billion in cash from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., which also agreed to reimburse up to $10.5 billion in future loan losses.

    The terms of the deal were considered to be unusually generous. The FDIC subsequently tightened its rules on private-equity ownership of banks.

    The matter of Mr. Schwarzman’s personal financial information is tied to BankUnited’s plans to convert from a savings-and-loan institution to a national bank. The bank proposed the switch last year when it agreed to buy Herald National Bank(HNB), a two-branch bank in New York, for roughly $70 million.

    As part of the conversion, the Fed requires detailed financial information from “principals” of entities that own more than 10% of the bank’s stock. The Fed first requested the information in the fall, according to the people familiar with the situation.

    The request stretches to the upper ranks of those firms, according to people familiar with the process. That means top executives of those firms are required to provide comprehensive details about private real-estate holdings, investments and anything else that contributes to their net worth.

    “The Fed has always been very careful about who they let into the banking tent,” says Harold Reichawald, co-chair of the banking practice at law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP in Los Angeles.

    Aside from running one of the private-equity firms that has invested in BankUnited, Mr. Schwarzman isn’t involved in the bank’s operations and doesn’t sit on its board of directors. Blackstone is represented on BankUnited’s board by Chinh E. Chu, a senior managing director.

    If Blackstone decides to sell the newly formed shares, they immediately will convert to regular common stock, according to a person familiar with the plan.

    Write to Robin Sidel at robin.sidel@wsj.com

  4. WHEN IS TOO MUCH NOT ENOUGH?

    This evening the “abrupt termination” of the plan of sale was announced on REUTERS: See below.
    It remains unclear how the current syndicate of under-regulated offshore hedge fund operators and principals will endure in the face of the intense govt scrutiny that their activity has stimulated. They might have been market-testing the speed of cash out wth Attorney Stopa’s DIL offers. Maybe FDIC ill restrict access to funds and advocate modifications instead of sales to Canadian Snowbirds and Italian/Greek scofflas. How about some articles on what the elements of a true refi-modification would be at current FMV? There have been some comments–please put some meat on the bones–establish some consensus.

    “BankUnited aborts sale, to stay independent

    (Adds details about bidders, background)

    By Paritosh Bansal and Brenton Cordeiro

    Jan 18 (Reuters) – BankUnited Inc’s private equity owners abruptly pulled the lender off the market on Wednesday after a brief sale process drew offers below expectations, and will instead focus on expanding in Florida and New York.

    The bank — which has Wilbur Ross’s WL Ross & Co, Blackstone Group LP and Carlyle Group among its owners — wanted an offer in the high $30-per-share range, a source familiar with the situation said. It has a market value of about $2.5 billion.

    The bank’s shares closed on Wednesday at $25.95 on the New York Stock Exchange, and fell 11 percent in aftermarket trading.

    BB&T Corp and Toronto-Dominion Bank put in initial bids, sources said. Goldman Sachs Group Inc was advising BankUnited.

    “The board wanted to see what the company was worth. It had in mind a very, very generous price,” the source said. “The board felt so optimistic because the prospects for next year are great and earnings for the quarter are great, so it emboldened them to think about a very high price.”

    BankUnited and BB&T declined to comment on the details of bids. TD was not immediately available for comment.

    BankUnited said it plans to report fourth-quarter results on Jan. 25, where it plans to report growth in deposits as well as loans.

    BankUnited has more than $11 billion in assets and some 95 branches and focuses on commercial banking. In June, BankUnited agreed to buy New York-based Herald NationalBank.

    BankUnited has already proven to be a blockbuster deal for the private equity firms. When the company went public in January 2011, the private equity investors saw the value of their initial investment of $900 million nearly triple at the IPO price of $27 per share.

    The consortium of private equity investors, led by veteran banker John Kanas, bought the assets of a failed Florida bank of the same name during the financial crisis in May 2009. Kanas had earlier run North Fork Bancorp for about 20 years before eventually selling it to Capital One.

    The deal, which came with certain protections offered by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, led to a rush of other private equity and hedge fund investors looking at investing in the sector and prompted regulators to put in stricter rules to govern such investments. (Reporting by Paritosh Bansal in New York and Brenton Cordeiro in Bangalore; Editing by Supriya Kurane and Gunna Dickson)

  5. @ALL
    WHEN IS TOO MUCH NOT NEARLY ENOUGH?
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/19/business/economy/imf-seeks-additional-500-billion.html?nl=afternoonupdate&emc=aua22

    I.M.F. Seeks Additional $500 BillionBy ANNIE LOWREY
    Published: January 18, 2012
    Recommend
    Twitter
    Linkedin

    E-Mail

    Print

    Reprints

    Share
    Close
    DiggRedditTumblrPermalink.WASHINGTON — The International Monetary Fund announced on Wednesday that it was seeking up to $500 billion in additional lending resources as it prepared to slash its forecasts of global growth.

    The institution, based in Washington, said that it estimated the world would need about $1 trillion in financing in the coming years for loans to countries with short-term difficulties paying their bills or because of concerns about prospective trouble in the volatile bond markets.

    Given that the fund currently has unused lending capacity of about $380 billion, it said it would seek to raise up to $500 billion in new funds to lend, plus $100 billion as a cash buffer. The new funds include the $200 billion committed by European Union countries in December.

  6. BIG HUD deal in offing–1 million families ger mods??
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/18/shaun-donovan-foreclosure-deal_n_1213882.html

    Different deal than offered by BankUnited?????

  7. teacher or an orator? [sort of–yes and yes]—sharp as a tack [wish i still were] . pollution-induced illness.[yes] Tasted the water lately?[i drink filtered–im old–not sure thats good enough] Did you notice that it runs pink and leaves that pink residue everywhere?[not ours, where] Medications kill.[yes, drs and hospitals too] Monsanto kills.[yes] Global warming is a reality,[undeniably–but CO2 follows the warming of oceans by the most intense solar insolation since the massive northern hemispere ice-sheets melted]

  8. @DCB,

    So, in a former life, did you use to be a teacher or an orator?

    Listen, all i have is my common sense and it’s sharp as a tack. People are killing over from pollution-induced illness. Tasted the water lately? Did you notice that it runs pink and leaves that pink residue everywhere?

    Medications kill. Monsanto kills. Global warming is a reality, with or without CO2 and I know that I know that I know that those chemtrails in the sky from January 1st until December 31 are not condensation trails from airplane. We’ve screwed up the earth. “Nukelar” (as Palin would say) is only one piece of that puzzle. Actually, if that blows, it will be quick. What I’d rather not experience is drought everywhere, burnt vegetation that can’t grow anymore, topsoil so deprived of elements and minerals that nothing survives, oceans so polluted that fish disappear, and resulting starvation.

    Now, of course, the History channel tells me that the little green guys from some other galaxy were here first and there will be a second coming of the little green guys.

    Whatever. I’m good with that. So long as it doesn’t hurt, I want to see it.

  9. @ENRAGED
    In prior stages of my life, I have studied particle physics, quantum mechanics and Fourier Analysis. Later I studied biochemistry, and then hydrocarbon chemistry–which is actually the easiest of all. Then law and finance.

    I used to be smart–before oxygen deprivation of my brain from several years of bleed-outs due to ulcers from CELEBREX. Without details, I used to routinely pass out just from standing. Not good for cognitive function–so Im pretty lame now.

    But along the way I spent years studying CO2 and other materials released into the atmosphere. all in all CO2 is very much benign. So is global warming [aka interglacial period warming] as compared to say nuclear plants with 1000 tons each of piled up spent rods with emissions half lives of millions of years. No room for error –no million to one bets–because with over 1000 plants worldwise after 40 years or so you are going to have some nasty events due to all manner of unforseen issues–from human error to mechanical breakdown on the antique plants–to changing pressures on the planet crust.

    CO2 until the last 60 million years stood at 2000-3000 ppm—today its 350. It has been in steady decline sinceabout 30 million years ago. 40,000 years ago at the peak of the last glacial period, it was down to 180 ppm. At 150 ppm –modern plants cease to function. If we enter the next glacial period with as few as 50 as much as 2000 years—with low levels of CO2–we will likely not re-emerge without mass extictions from inadequate CO2 levels. Man is filling the natural role od a gopher–digging up nutrients to re-plensih fertility at the surface-biosphere. Beware the economic interests behind CO2 regulation. ENRON invented CO2 credit trading–BP and SHELL are the biggest beneficiaries–they send $$ to China to subsidize CO2 reduction–

    The Chinese use the $$$ to build windpower in areas not served by an electric grid. That makes sense for China–but is not so smart for Europe which paid for the subsidies.

  10. @DCB,

    I said 15 years as I would have 10 or 50… I don’t know anymore than anyone else how much longer we can keep destroying this earth and still expect to survive, as a species.

  11. @DCB,

    I’m not afraid of CO2. I’m not afraid of much, actually…

    Global warming is, however, a reality. And while everyone gets screwed by the very few, money doesn’t circulate as it should to provide for the many. Education, infrastructures, R&D, peace (nope, not that one… Everyone knows that wars are what promotes economic development!)

    Enough said.

  12. @ENRAGED
    “And anyway, makes very little sense to worry about the next 15 years and the lack of freedom when we keep actively dumping CO2 in the atmosphere. For all i know, there won’t be another 15 years for humanity. Know why? Because all the money required to reverse the process by inventing alternative energy solutions and reducing CO2 levels is in the pockets of the 1%. For me, what’s important is here and now. Not some hypothetical and uncertain future.”

    Why on earth would you be afraid of CO2 ending life in 15 Years?

  13. People are only waking up now about censorship and loss of freedom in the US. If they had observed what transpired in the last 30 years, they would have spoken up earlier.

    The minute laws were passed to dictate what kind of speech was “politically correct”, free speech had already become a thing of the past. The problem is not that those laws were passed and enacted but rather that they are unilaterally enforced. The 1% are exempt while the 99% must comply to a “T”.

    We can’t say “the old folks”. We’re supposed to call them “the elderly”. But Boehner gets away with berating, demeaning, insulting and threatening them because they got conned into reverse mortgage they didn’t understand and fell behind on their payments. Actually, he even goes as far as implying that it is their fault, they don’t deserve any assistance and losing their house serves them well.

    We can’t say “n…” (which, by the way, blacks use all the time when arguing among themselves…) but it’s perfectly alright for Gingrich or Ron Paul to make the statements they made about their alleged lack of values, lack or morals, lack of work ethics, etc. and the need to treat them like an underclass.

    It’s become so insane that the choice is either to worry about it and get consummed by it or to rise above it and decide that it won’t stop us from functioning, getting involved and enjoying life.

    Paranoia, on the other hand, is not a viable solution for what I’m concerned. The idea of constantly watching my back for fear (false evidence appearing real) of unconfirmed retaliation is not appealing to me and certainly not conducive of action and change. Is something in the works? Absolutely! But I believe in the human spirit enough to know that we won’t allow it to get as far as some people would like us to dread.

    And anyway, makes very little sense to worry about the next 15 years and the lack of freedom when we keep actively dumping CO2 in the atmosphere. For all i know, there won’t be another 15 years for humanity. Know why? Because all the money required to reverse the process by inventing alternative energy solutions and reducing CO2 levels is in the pockets of the 1%. For me, what’s important is here and now. Not some hypothetical and uncertain future.

  14. In DC its often referred to as the “INTERNET KILL SWITCH”, It started as a military and power-grid anti-disruption IT plan aimed at IT attacks from China and Iran and whatever bogeyman they want us to worry about next. But new support was motivated by fear of a US version of “Arab Spring”- typeperceived threats. Except from sources in the US. The AWS movement arose and added to the concerns and lobbying by special interests. One can only guess that they are padding out legislative history–as well as actual legislation–to support great breadth in rule-making–ie regualtions bu multiple agencies.

    Below is a January 2011 article, I cannot say what subtle amendments may have been made, but generally such legislation will ultimately be spread across several bills–due to House-Senate multi-committee jurisdiction. It can be more than a single bill involved–it entails adoption of a legislative and administration “policy”. The question today is: What policy? The internet businesses complain because there were investigatory-responsibility provisions imposed upon their business conduct. The use of such business entities to identify, collect, and probably report suspicious internet activity may circumvent 4th amendment protections from search and seizure–invite entrapment. It is impossible to say where this amorphous project may lead–although some wost case scenarios might be envisioned.

    One example I can think of is that rules adopted after passage of the proposed bill that might directly impact the sponor(s), posters and readers of this particular site. Someone in recent past made some references to weapons in the same paragraph as to certain specially-protected federal employees/families. On the threat scale that might be applied by automated search engines: identification in a posting of the words [character-strings] “weapon” “[federal employee name]” and “family” would get a high threat score–probably reportable. The reporting duty would fall to the site operator and carriers–files would be accumulated on the person posting—operators would be required to report the information known about this poster’s otherwise anonymous presence on the site.

    Additional high scoring comments would have to be “noticed” and recorded by the site operator –with application of a geometric risk assessment. Logarithmic. Geometric growth. Report at certain levels.

    Then if there are more than three such high scoring posters–the entire site gets caught in the data assessment by its internet carrier. All site posters get rated–if bad enough–then the readers.
    It gives the govt a whole new opportunity to surveil, and control information flow–with chilling effect on the 1st Amendment. BOOKS were much much harder to regulate–had to prohibit publication—or as in Germany pre-war–burn them.

    The internet enables dangerous communications–but overextension of regulation may create 1st amendment conflicts as well as 4th and possible 5th.
    “A controversial bill handing President Obama power over privately owned computer systems during a “national cyberemergency,” and prohibiting any review by the court system, will return this year.

    Internet companies should not be alarmed by the legislation, first introduced last summer by Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), a Senate aide said last week. Lieberman, an independent who caucuses with Democrats, is chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

    “We’re not trying to mandate any requirements for the entire Internet, the entire Internet backbone,” said Brandon Milhorn, Republican staff director and counsel for the committee.” http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-501465_162-20029302-501465.html

  15. http://www.cnn.com/2012/01/17/tech/web/wikipedia-sopa-blackout-qa/index.html

    It’s against SOPA. Some kind of protest against censorship disguise as “security measure” (see Patriot Act).

    Well, can’t fight more than one battle at a time! That one will have to wait…

  16. Is that the so-called internet shut off switch–to prevent viral spread of anti-govt info to coordinate demonstrations–to prevent AWS and mideast stuff?

  17. @Nabdulla,

    I got one too. It doesn’t give much info and I don’t know what we are supposed to protest.

  18. @ NABDULLA
    Could you explain just exactly what is in issue here? What does the legislation seek to do?

  19. Just got another one ??

    Tomorrow, websites like reddit, Wikipedia, and ours will go dark in protest of bills in Congress that would stifle online innovation and free speech. (The Senate is set to vote next week.)

    You told us that you are a small business owner or executive. If you have a website, can you black out your site tomorrow in solidarity?

    Click here to get some simple code for blacking out your site tomorrow (Wednesday).

    Thanks for standing up for Internet freedom!

    — Jason Rosenbaum, Adam Green, Conor Kennedy, Jordan Krueger, Robyn Swirling, and the PCCC team

    P.S. If you have any questions about joining the blackout, just reply to this email.

  20. @ All

    Just got this from the Progressive Change Campagne Committee. Anybody familiar with this proposed bill?

    Congress will soon vote on legislation that would end the Internet as we know it.

    Join over 117,000 others in signing the reddit/PCCC petition to Congress. –>

    PETITION TO CONGRESS: Don’t let big corporations use lobbyists and government regulations to censor the Internet and block innovators from inventing the next reddit, YouTube, or Google. Protect free speech and innovation online.

    After you sign, you’ll get activism emails from the PCCC — including informing you when your representatives will vote on this horrible bill.

  21. @ALL–UPDATED LAST NIGHT:
    The Federal Reserve has requested unprecedented financial information from the control syndicate operators. The syndicate have chosen instead to rapidly, within a few weeks, sell the bank, or its assets, to apparently unsuspecting buyer banks including Canada’s Toronto Dominion. Bids have been requested due today—January 17, 2012.
    FDIC has only recently been embarrassed by this syndicate’s $2.2 billion profits in an initial public offering of common stock in January 2011, only 18 months after the midyear 2009 bailout. The bailout consisted of coincidentally [?] an FDIC up-front payment of $2.2 billion, plus an FDIC guarantee of value of $10-12 billion assets—including its home-loan portfolio. Other federal agencies’ exposure is not known. Is HUD also subject to claims? Are all taxes paid or secured on these recognized and unrecognized gains?
    It is a time for exercise of carefully measured caution by all interested parties—as the syndicate withdraws money from this FDIC honeypot called BankUnited by seizure of homes.
    At the end of the day, one might wonder if it is appropriate government policy to pay a syndicate of questionable offshore hedge funds to dispossess US homeowners. Should the FDIC insurance payments be placed in escrow until all the comparative rights are carefully weighed and verified? Is it not most important if the syndicate’s controlled entities erroneously and negligently manage to acquire title to homes and drive the homeowner into the street through subtle intimidation and ambiguous representations? Will not the liquidation of homes— strongly motivated by FDIC payments— contribute to risk that the syndicate will divert or convert those funds and decapitalize the bank. Would that not place at risk the large numbers of elderly Floridian depositors that constitute the depositor market expressly targeted by the syndicate? If there is excessive removal of funds by the syndicate through this device, will it not endanger the elderly depositors? Is there increased risk of a second bail-out because of this? Should FDIC take the incentive out of this rush? Should FDIC deposit funds in escrow pending resolution of issues that linger behind aggressive liquidation of bank assets?

  22. @Eule,

    We have to wait and see if this action does get class action status… this always seems to be the problem.

  23. FORECLOSURE TIMES: How many days does it take to foreclose in Florida? – 2012-01-16 23:56:28-05

    FORECLOSURE TIMES BY LYNN E. SZYMONIAK, ESQ., ED., FRAUD DIGEST JANUARY 15, 2012 How many days does it take to foreclose in Florida? The average number of days for a foreclosure action to be completed is often reported, and usually accompanied by a criticism that the process is too unwieldy.

    Read more at http://stopforeclosurefraud.com/2012/01/16/foreclosure-times-how-many-days-does-it-take-to-foreclose-in-florida/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ForeclosureFraudByDinsfla+%28FORECLOSURE+FRAUD+%7C+by+DinSFLA%29

  24. Another ball is rolling by CHASE :

    http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/01/17/HidenSeek.pdf

  25. Stopa blog post concerning these FDIC incentives.

    http://www.stayinmyhome.com/blog/?s=FDIC

    Is there a way by better understanding these FDIC incentives we can better negotiate our particular loan? There should be.

    My guess is the FDIC trigger for guarranty is via foreclosure not for modification or principal reduction. That would make too much sense for the govt bozos to set it up that way (are you listening FHFA/Fannie/Freddie?).

    But maybe you can argue OK BankUnited fine you get DIL but given that I know about your crap papers and your particular deal with FDIC guarrantees I want $25k or $50k or whatever for cash for keys not $3k.

    Neil blogged about BOA and I think Chase making as high as $25k offers to homeowners in order not to have to litigate.

    Still the whole thing is silly bec if you dropped my loan from $285k to $235k i would be incentivized to stay in it. But that’s me speaking logic again.

  26. Funny ,,

    1st , Wilbur Ross is now a Floridian? He was always referred to in the past as “Texas Billionaire .. ”

    2nd , Ronnie Biggs got caught but still lived LARGE for many decades (and is free today) … very much like I expect the banksters to end up..

  27. DCB,

    Enlightening post DCB.

    You seemed to attack me re: Stopa post earlier (which is fine all discussion is good). I hope this information filters down to the local level. I get what you are saying. I do believe the servicers are full of crap. I do believe that a DIL as offered might be technically flawed, but I believe that a DIL as negotiated and reviewed by a Stopa could serve certain homeowners.

    Flawed DIL still you get the loan removed from credit granted with a DIL via bogus servicer, a deficiency waiver reviewed by lawyer (granted by a bogus servicer), no turnover of financials and a measly $3000. OK. I understand it is FLAWED but the WHOLE MESS is flawed. I think we are moving to a positive outcome with this whole charade but some homeowners simply can’t wait.

    I think what your post is revealing re FDIC incentives (I believe Stopa has blogged on these early) is their incentive to foreclose depending on their basis in the deal and the FDIC hideous/harmful incentives/guarantees. If they get 30 cents on the dollar in foreclosure and FDIC provides huge guarrantee for the rest then they foreclose. If the investors paid a straight 50 cents they can come to the homeowner and offer 60 cents reset, clean papers and good interest rate and we all win.

    The path we need to get to is this… OK fine the crap banks went under. Let them go under!!!!! The hedge funds can come in and buy for pennies on the dollar and then offer reformed deal/principal reduction and we can stay in our homes. The new investors get a return and no hassle for foreclosure and we get reset to realistic market price. win win.

    The govt bandaid bailouts have prevented this. Look at Fannie Mae. $160 billion and counting to bail them out. That is money they can use to foreclose on me. Let them go under.

    I will reread your post again later lots to digest.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: