From Occupy DC: Police just threw homeowners trying to get her mortgage adjusted thrown out of Chase Bank.
As our friends over at Raw Story noted this weekend, Rachel Maddow took the House Republicans to task for continuing to pretend that they care about job creation in America, when apparently all they're willing to vote on is one abortion restricting bill after another to drum up their base for the next election.
In an unusually blunt and plain-spoken segment on Friday night’s “The Rachel Maddow Show,” host Rachel Maddow tore into Republicans for claiming that they care about jobs numbers when all they actually do on Capitol Hill is try to pass more and more laws restricting abortion, even when they know those bills are doomed to fail.
Thursday saw the release of disappointing jobs numbers, which has been a blow to the Obama administration. Republicans seized on the news and responded with a PR blitz, criticizing President Barack Obama and his economic policies.
A closer look at the numbers, however, shows that the jobs being lost are government and other public sector jobs, losses that are coming about as a result of Republican austerity programs and budget cuts. The very drop in jobs numbers that the GOP is decrying is a result of its own policies, said Maddow.
And yet, for all their talk about jobs, their only consistent legislative focus has been anti-abortion legislation.
As they noted in their post, Republicans knew the legislation would likely fail, but they wanted to make Democrats vote on it anyway. Maddow wrapped her commentary with this:
This bill, Republican leadership conceded, would probably fail as well, but, said Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), “I think we’re doing the right thing strategically” by forcing Democrats to vote against it.
“So, we know it will fail,” said Maddow, “but we like making Democrats vote on abortion anyway. It just feels good. Also, it passes the time! Jobs, jobs, jobs!”
This is it. This is history. After months of historic division, job loss, criminal corruption and partisan power grabs, Tom Barrett offers Wisconsin a new start.
Walker's sleazy money can't vote, and it's clear that the people of Wisconsin will take the opportunity with a leader like Tom Barrett to give Wisconsin a new start at healing our great state and beginning the long job of repairing the devastation wrought by 17 months of irresponsible rule.
Watch for updates on Twitter here.
On Thursday, I posted about Lilly Washington, the woman who was visiting her son in a military hospital in Germany and returned to find her home had been foreclosed, and all her belongings sent to the city dump, including her son's Purple Heart. As part of the Home Defenders League launch, she hosted a barbecue at her home for 70 people, including her local City Council Member and news crews from four local TV stations. The above video is her local NBC affiliate coverage.
This is from Lilly's letter to HDL partner LUCHA in May 2012:
They took my home. Evicted me twice. Helped put me in the hospital six times. Threw everything I owned in the city dump. And when they sold my house out from under me back in 2010, I was in a military hospital in Germany, helping care for my son, who was in a coma from injuries suffered in combat in Afghanistan.
That’s crazy, right? But I never gave up. After Bank of America sold my home – I was already negotiating with them for a loan modification and they even told me that they would put the negotiations on hold while I cared for my son – I decided I wasn’t leaving and I reoccupied it.
The Home Defenders League fills in a lot of details here that weren't available in earlier reports:
Here’s what happened to Lilly when she came back from Afghanistan (her son, thankfully, emerged from his coma). She found a ‘for sale’ sign in the yard and a new lock on the front door. Her house had been completely emptied; the furniture acquired over years, the Purple Heart her son had earned when he was shot during an earlier tour in Iraq: all gone. Bank of America had illegally and fraudulently sold her house to Fannie Mae only days after she’d left the country. And, they’d thrown all of her belongings in the city dump.
So like David confronting impossible odds, she stood up and fought. She moved back in, fought the eviction in court, and replaced her furniture with donations from her church. When the Sheriff’s deputies came in January 2012 to evict her, Lilly won a stay of eviction. Then in April she found a judge who finally recognized that she had been robbed by Wall Street bankers and let her legally possess her home again.
The fight has cost her, though. Fighting the Sheriff’s deputies gave her a slipped disk. The stress caused her a heart attack. She’s gone to the hospital six times and is facing yet another surgery. She’s on disability. But she’s outraged that the banks can break the law, steal her house, throw away everything she’s ever owned, ruin her health without facing any consequences whatsoever. She’s headed back to court to force Bank of America and Fannie Mae to give her title to the house free and clear and make them pay damages.
Bank of America's top executives neglected to tell their shareholders about the losses at Merrill Lynch before completing the $50 billion purchase of the company in 2008. Shareholders were instead told of projections showing the deal would make money, when in fact it resulted in losses that prompted the $20 billion taxpayer bailout.
The information was revealed through documents filed on Sunday night for a Bank of America shareholder lawsuit, which includes testimony from then-Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis, admitting that the documents filed with regulators and shareholders before the acquisition vote didn't include the loss estimates he had previously received. At the bank board's next meeting just days after the decision, they were given news that there had been a $14 billion before tax loss in the fourth quarter. The lawsuit will be heard in Federal District Court in Manhattan.
Two business days after Bank of America shareholders approved the deal, the bank’s board met and received details of the $14 billion pretax fourth-quarter loss. The board also learned that the deal would be far more damaging to the bank’s earnings than had been publicly disclosed.
One bank executive attending that meeting was Timothy Mayopoulos, then Bank of America’s general counsel. In testimony noted in the court filing, Mr. Mayopoulos expressed surprise at the size of the loss, which he said he had not been told about. He testified that he tried to speak with Mr. Price about possibly disclosing the losses but that Mr. Price was not available.
The next day, the filing noted, Mr. Mayopoulos was “fired without explanation and immediately escorted from
the premises, without being given the opportunity to collect his personal belongings.”
And just a reminder...
Behind the Recall: The Rise and Fall of Scott Walker: Made in the style of a "Behind the Music" episode, this video is a shocking account of Scott Walker's tarnished legacy. It traces his rise to Tea Party stardom, and his bitter fall from grace with average Wisconsinites.
More on Scott Walker from Daily Kos, The Underreported Story of Scott Walker and Foreclosure Fraud: Do you know someone whose life has been affected by foreclosure? Chances are, in 2012, you do. That's why it's so important that you know the story of what Scott Walker did with the funds meant for victims of foreclosure fraud.
Working America members drove over 55,000 letters and calls to help secure these funds to help homeowners. Instead of using them for their intended purpose, Walker used a loophole to transfer millions into his state budget, bypassing struggling homeowners and fraud victims completely.
Get the full report here.
Woman Who Couldn’t Be Intimidated by Citigroup Wins $31 Million: "By 2006, the bank was buying mortgages from outside lenders with doctored tax forms, phony appraisals and missing signatures, she says. It was Hunt’s job to identify these defects, and she did, in regular reports to her bosses.
Executives buried her findings, Hunt says, before, during and after the financial crisis, and even into 2012." Full report here.
OCCUPY LA: Banners went up on Day 4 of the Siege on the CCA last night!! We had around 100 activists peacefully assemble right at the doorstep of the ONE-PERCENT’S LOBBY.
Occupy Skid Row, LA CAN, Occupy the Hood, and Occupy Los Angeles held it down with lots of guests to the action. We had several NEWCOMERS who attended the GA, took the streets, and occupied for the first time! There were also several occupiers from around the state (SF, Ventura, Riverside, Long Beach, Venice) and country (Oregon, New York, Arizona).
A Fracking Foreclosure: "Help us keep the River in Riverdale": Day of Action for Riverdale, Monday, June 4: International Day of Solidarity with the Riverdale Community on Monday, June 4 Riverdale residents and supporters are calling for an international day of solidarity action in support of the Riverdale community this Monday, June 4. As relocation resister Deb Eck has put it, you are invited...
Thank a Union: 36 Ways Unions Have Improved Your Life: "Let's get one thing straight...
Employers and Corporations did not feel generous and decide to give you two days off every week to have a social/personal life. (We now call them weekends). Corporations did not just feel like being nice one day and give their employees paid vacations. CEOs didn't get together in a board room and say "Let's give our employees more rights at work" or "Maybe there should be laws to limit our power over an employee". Read full post here.
"Minneapolis police were braced for a violent confrontation with Occupy Minnesota activists intent on reclaiming a home the police had seized. Instead, the police were peacefully serenaded while a pastor from across the street led the crowd in prayer."
This has been a fascinating case to watch. Local police seem determined to boot out the occupiers and the owner of the home, but Occupy Minnesota is just as determined to win this fight against the banks.
"Twenty-three have been arrested during five eviction attempts in the last week as part of an ongoing defense of the Cruz family’s home that has garnered national attention. Monday June 4, Occupy DC has organized a demonstration in front of the Freddie Mac office in Washington, DC." More here.
"As hundreds of protesters arrested during months of Occupy Wall Street demonstrations get their day in court, their arresting officers aren't even bothering to show up. When they have, as in the first two cases to go to trial, the NYPD testimony was disproved with photographic and video evidence, resulting in both protesters getting acquitted."
Hunger/AIDS Medication Striker to Trinity Church: "Forgive Us Our Trespasses" : "Jack Boyle's hands are nothing but trouble. Not only is his right thumb bent completely out of shape, injured during his forcible eviction from Zuccotti Park in November, but his fingertips are increasingly numb, as his peripheral neuropathy kicks in more, and more. It's been twelve days since he took his medication and eight days since he's eaten, and he is starting to feel it. He used to take Truvada once daily and Lexiva and Norvir twice daily. He says the "a" at the end of Truvada and Lexiva like "er," the way many of his fellow fifty-something native New Yorkers would. But he won't take any of those pills ever again, unless Trinity Church forgives him and his friends their trespasses." Continue reading here.
Occupy Police - Corruption, Political Agenda & Money – OCPO’s 40 Page Report on The Worlds First Attempt At Mass Police Privatization.
Think Progress: Second Romney-Backed Solar Company Files For Bankruptcy.
Anonymous: We Are Anonymous - We Are Everywhere - We Are Legion - We Never Forget - We Never Forgive - Expect Us.
Just in case any of the 11.5 million struggling homeowners out there are waiting to hear what Mitt Romney's plans are to turn around the housing market, and help those with underwater mortgages, his policy director Lanhee Chen wants you to know up front that there will be no targeted relief for you people.
Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, doesn’t intend to offer targeted relief for the 11.5 million American homeowners who owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth, Chen said, suggesting that such actions are temporary fixes insufficient to stabilize the housing market.
“Governor Romney has indicated that there are some steps we ought to take to ensure that we’re growing our economy,” Chen said. “But on the housing market specifically, I do think we have to resist the temptation for short-term approaches.”
So as much as Governor One Percent would like to help 11.5 million Americans, he just can't allow himself to be tempted, because what's really important? The banks!
Romney, a former private-equity executive who founded the Boston-based firm Bain Capital LLC, wants to replace the Dodd- Frank financial regulation law enacted in 2010 with more limited and “reasonable” rules, including governing derivatives and “some kind of consumer protections,” Chen said.
“The mistake here is to say that somehow because we repealed Dodd-Frank and we get rid of the really burdensome set of regulations that Dodd-Frank put in place, that somehow we’re going back to a dog-eat-dog kind of situation where there’s absolutely no regulation,” Chen said.
Still, he said the so-called Volcker rule to ban proprietary trading by banks “has a lot of problems,” and would be “one of the problematic elements that, quite frankly, Governor Romney would seek to replace.”
Oh, and don't even bother to ask about what Romney has in store for taxes, because he's not going to tell you anything more than he intends to lower taxes by an average of $231,971 for the top 1 percent of taxpayers. Are you going to lose any of your current deductions, or face an increase in your taxes? He's just too busy and important to be troubled with filling you in on the trivial little details.
If you're considering voting for Mitt Romney for POTUS, you'll just have to trust that he will always look out for what's best for the top one percent of the population.
Too bad about your homes.
[Tip o' the hat to Nicole.]
My name is Olivia. I can’t hold a sign because I’m so little.
I was born with club feet. One was so bad, it was nearly upside-down. My feet have been stretched into place and casted into position every week since I was 3 weeks old. It really hurts. I’m 3 and a half months old now, so I’ve done that a lot. It costs about $500 each time. (You can see one of my casts peeking out under my dress.)
On March 21, 2012 I had my first surgery, because the stretching wasn’t working. That cost nearly $9,000, but if my feet don’t get fixed, I’ll never be able to walk.
Medicaid is paying to fix my feet. My Daddy is a disabled veteran, but his insurance won’t cover my feet. My Mom is trying to raise my 3 brothers and I while she wracks up student loans getting her college degree, because minimum wage isn’t enough to keep a roof over our heads.
WIC is paying for my formula, because Mom’s milk never came in. She feels kinda bad about that, but sometimes these things just happen.
I hear that some people want to get rid of Medicaid, the Pell Grant, and WIC, so that the 1% can have even more tax breaks. Well, I want to be able to walk. I need to eat. And my Mom would like to be able to provide for me better someday. I don’t understand why people want to take that away from me. What did I do wrong?
We are occupying!!!
Join LA CAN, Occupy the Hood, Occupy Skid Row and Occupy Los Angeles at Wilshire/Hope (626 Wilshire Blvd.) at 8:30pm tonight to fight gentrification and the corrupt practices of the lobby group Central City Association. BRING TENT.
We are peacefully gathering to protest the Economic Development Meeting and the downtown 2020 plan to build new high rises, the AEG Stadium and further criminalize and push out the homeless. The CCA is the localized manifestation and microcosm of everything wrong with policy, the 1% and obsession with wealth and prestige. In this hyper-localized resistance, everyone must fight the bully in their respective backyards, as a community.
We have power in numbers and will be OCCUPYING the CCA, who monitors the public spaces of downtown with private security for the one percent. Red shirt, green shirt, purple shirt, police all working together to criminalize the homeless, communities of color and more recently, to patrol protesters in the area.