Grand Theft Autosigning — stealing houses is illegal, isn’t it?

Scot Paltrow: “The watchdogs that didn’t bark“ Four years after the banking system nearly collapsed from reckless mortgage lending, federal prosecutors have stayed on the sidelines, even as judges around the country are pointing fingers at possible wrongdoing. … Foreclosure-related case files in just one New York federal bankruptcy court, for example, hold at least [Read More…]

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The Liberation of Ebenezer Scrooge (and possible liberation of Jamie Dimon)

The Consumerist brings us the latest in a wave of recent stories about a mystery benefactor bringing holiday cheer to strangers in need. Call it holiday cheer or call it the best bandwagon we’ve ever seen, but yet another kind-hearted consumer has plunked down cash to make the season a bit brighter for his fellow [Read More…]

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Congress cuts LIHEAP — because giving billions to the rich is no fun unless you also get to screw the poor

Susie Madrak notes that the shutdown deal in Congress cuts winter heating aid for low-income families. I used to be confused as to why LIHEAP was always among the first programs on the chopping block when states or the federal government wanted to cut the budget. LIHEAP, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, helps low-income [Read More…]

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The very worst thing Nathan could imagine

Here is an alien story from another world. It’s from 3,000 years ago, or what we think of as “biblical times.” That’s the right word in this case, since this story is from the Bible. It’s the story of the prophet Nathan coming to condemn King David for his sin. Before he can convince David [Read More…]

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Subprime incentives and student loans

Let’s say we arrange a private student loan, you and I. I agree to lend you $10,000 at 8 percent interest. After you graduate and get a job (for the purposes of this hypothetical, we’ll pretend that’s easy, or at least possible) you begin making payments. This works out nicely for both of us. Your [Read More…]

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Ludwig von Mises smacks down latest religious-right talking point

Right-wing hero Ludwig von Mises approaches the Jesus of the Bible the same way that Chuck Colson does — which is to say that he’s primarily interested in whether or not it will rile up the peasants or keep them sedate. But where Colson invokes Jesus as a helpful moralist who can keep the peasants [Read More…]

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Chuck Colson calls himself an envious, soak-the-rich socialist

Chuck Colson’s latest column — “Killing Your Neighbor’s Cow — Income Inequality” is not the work of an honest man. If it were, then the only way to make any sense of it would be as a confession — as Chuck Colson calling himself a soak-the-rich socialist firmly in the grasp of the deadly sin [Read More…]

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Banks behaving badly

Matt Stoller: “Mortgage Servicers: Getting Away with the Perfect Crime?“ The bad behavior is so rampant that banks think nothing of a contractor programming fraud into the software. This is shocking behavior and has led to untold numbers of foreclosures, as well as the theft of huge sums of money from mortgage-backed securities investors. Here’s [Read More…]

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