A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
A new report shows the Obama administration has been just as protective as its Republican predecessor of bank robo-signing: forging the signatures of millions of homeowners in order to foreclose their homes. “Theft and fraud were standard practice on Wall Street, and both the Bush and Obama administrations knew it, and protected the criminals.” Obama didn't just “inherit” Bush's entanglement with Wall Street robo-gangsters. He joined the criminal enterprise.
Obama and Bush Administrations Complicit With Bankers’ in Massive Foreclosure Scheme
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
“The robo-signers kept stealing as a matter of routine, while the Obama administration pretended it was on the side of the people.”
Both the Bush and the Obama administrations are complicit in the gargantuan and ongoing corporate conspiracy to unlawfully foreclose on the homes of millions of Americans. The U.S. government, through its quasi-private housing corporation Fannie Mae and the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which is supposed to oversee the millions of mortgages guaranteed by Fannie Mae, collaborated in the so-called “robo-signing” scheme that has allowed banks to repossess homes without proof they own the mortgages to the houses.
That’s the scenario that emerges from a new report by the Inspector General of the Federal Housing Agency. It is an indictment of the clear complicity of two administrations – one Republican, the other Democratic – in the total abrogation of the rule of law as it pertains to Wall Street. The report shows that the Bush administration was made aware, back in 2003 that banks were engaged in wholesale fraud and theft of properties of American homeowners. The housing bubble had not yet burst, but the banks were gobbling up properties, especially defaulted sub-prime mortgages that had been targeted at Blacks and Latinos. But, because of the banks own practices of bundling mortgages into securities and then immediately passing them on to suckers down the line, the banks did not have clear title to the properties. They sold them anyway by forging signatures by the millions. Theft and fraud were standard practice on Wall Street, and both the Bush and Obama administrations knew it, and protected the bankster criminals. Law firms did much of the criminal dirty work. At least one legal outfit in Florida processed 75,000 robo-signed signatures a year for Fannie Mae.
“It is an indictment of the clear complicity of two administrations – one Republican, the other Democratic – in the total abrogation of the rule of law as it pertains to Wall Street.”
The Bush administration was alerted to these activities eight years ago, but did nothing. And, after Fannie Mae became bankrupt and was absorbed into the federal government in 2008, the Obama administration continued to protect the Wall Street conspirators. The robo-signers kept stealing as a matter of routine, while the Obama administration pretended it was on the side of the people by launching what it promised would be a $50 billion Home Affordable Modification Program. It was all a sham. Relatively few homeowners were saved. The reason was that the Obama administration’s priority was the same as the Bush administration’s had been: to smooth the process by which the banks could clear up foreclosures and pass the bad paper on to the federal government, putting the people’s bank account deeper and deeper in the red.
The robo-signers kept signing, and they are still at it, with the full protection of the Obama administration. The Inspector General of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, who issued the damning reports, says the agency still claims to be deciding what to do about the robo-signers, eight years later. The agency issued a statement that it would do something by September of 2012 - just before the presidential election.
To apologize for President Obama by claiming that he “inherited” the housing mess from George Bush is like saying that Al Capone inherited his criminal enterprises from previous gangsters. Obama is just as much a conspirator with Wall Street as Bush, and he has signaled he intends to keep the mega-crime going right up till Election Day. He's a gangster, pure and simple.
For Black Agenda Radio, I'm Glen Ford. On the web, to go BlackAgendareport.com.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at [email protected].