Banking Crisis

Banking Crisis

*** A short explanation of how we got to where we are:

Today’s banking crisis is the THIRD trillion dollar plus US-caused financial meltdown in the last twenty years.

Each one of these crises came into being through the same basic mechanism…the fraudulent over-valuing of financial assets by Wall Street – with a “wink and a nod” (and sometimes a lot more) from the White House and Congress.

The fraudulently valued assets stimulate the economy, impart the illusion of health and then, inevitably, the fraud goes too far and the whole house of card comes painfully crashing back to earth.

The three trillion dollar plus frauds were:

Fraud #1: The so-called “Savings and Loan Crisis” of the late 80s

Fraud #2: The so-called “Tech Bubble” of the late 90s

Fraud #3: The so-called “Credit Crisis” of today

*** How the scam works

The mechanism of these frauds is simplicity itself…

…Take a shaky financial asset and blow up its value and then sell as much of it as you can.

In the “Savings and Loan Crisis,” the instrument was junk bonds.

In the “Tech Bubble” it was Internet stocks.

In the “Credit Crisis” it was individual mortgages collected into pools and then re-sold to investors.

In each case, normal, well established “bread and butter”
financial principles were consciously thrown away by Wall Street with no hint of protest from federal regulators.

***The “Savings and Loan Crisis” dissected

Junk bonds caused the Saving and Loan crisis which resulted in the US taking over the assets of hundreds of banks and selling them back over time to the marketplace
at fire sale prices.

Junk bonds, which caused the “Savings and Loan Crisis” were shaky bonds that were pumped up by deliberate misrepresentation and what I call “staged dealing.”

Bonds get their value from two things: the amount of interest they pay and how safe they are.

“Junk” bonds have to pay higher interest because they are less safe. Therefore, until the “Savings and Loan Crisis,”  savings and loan banks banks were not allowed by law to buy them and call them assets.

Reagan/Bush changed all this and then a group of Wall Street fraudsters used the new loophole to kick off an orgy of junk bond creation and junk bond selling to banks and insurance companies.

The crooks would deal the junk bonds back and forth amongst themselves thereby establishing their “value”
and then they’d sell them to outsiders. The bonds then became “assets” which could be borrowed against and leveraged to buy even more bonds.

When the bonds failed, the banks failed and in stepped the US government to “fix” the problem that it created at the cost of at least one trillion dollars to US tax payers.

Deja vu, eh?

***The “Tech Bubble” dissected

The instrument of fraud in the “Tech Bubble” was Internet stocks, start ups in particular.

A stock gets its value from the underlying company’s sales, its growth and its overall prospects for the future.

Pre-tech bubble, companies used to have to prove themselves by being in existence for several years before they could be sold on major exchanges.  That standard was thrown away during the tech bubble.

To pump of their values, the companies engaged in “staged dealing” just like the junk bond crooks.

Company #1 would “sell” 20 million dollars in banner ads to Company #2 which would in turn “sell” 20 million in banner ads to Company #1.

In fact, nobody sold anybody anything. Company #2 ran ads for Company #1 and billed it for them. Company #1 ran ads for Company #2 and billed for an equal amount.

These should have been called media trades not sales, but Wall Street was happy to claim them as legitimate cash sales and then use the sales numbers to fraudulently value these companies – many of them totally worthless – in the hundreds of millions and sometimes even the billions.

***The “Credit Crisis” dissected

By now, you see how the scheme works.

It’s not complicated at all.

You take near worthless pieces of paper (junk bonds, stock of start up Internet companies, etc.) and declare them to be good as gold.

Then you create as many junk bonds and Internet start up stocks as you get and sell them as fast as you can.

In the case of our current crisis, the instrument of fraud was so-called sub-prime mortgages.

Previously, sub-prime mortgages had very little trading value.
Only people in the sub-prime industry itself dealt in them and for good reason. They’re tricky to value and packed with financial peril.

But Wall Street changed all that.

Wall Street said: “If we take LOTS of these mortgages and assemble them into large pools and then slice and dice the pools in various ways, we can sell the slices to banks and other investors as AAA paper.”

It sounds crazy, doesn’t it?

If the underlying pieces of paper are garbage, how does assembling a whole bunch of garbage into one place make it “better?”

It doesn’t, of course, and this is a principle even a three year old child can understand.

But greed and the need to pump up a shaky economy for propaganda purposes are two very strong motivators.

Banks created these mortgage pools, sold them to each other, and they by virtue of these “staged sales” declared them valuable.

Do you recognize the pattern now?

If you do, then you are now smarter than all the assembled [email protected]@sses who do financial reporting because they apparently can’t – or won’t.

This is the THIRD trillion-dollar plus fraud driven financial meltdown in twenty years and apparently no one in the financial
news media can see how it happened.

***But there’s more…

Junk bonds were mass manufactured as fast as the crooks could invent them. Ditto for Internet stocks.

But how did hundreds of billions of dollars worth of “toxic”
mortgages suddenly come into being?

Why did the mortgage industry change its lending standards so radically and so suddenly to make their creation possible?

And why did real estate lending regulators in all 50 states – because real estate lending is a STATE-level issue not a federal
– go along with it?

Here’s where it gets very interesting…

The fact is state-level lending regulators were VERY concerned about what was going on.  They have been for years.

And they not only expressed their concern clearly, they also took SERIOUS concerted legal action to stop lenders from making bad real estate loans to their citizens.

(Most of the sub-prime loans in the news so much today were designed to screw the people who borrowed the money and can rightly be called “predatory” loans.)

Guess who stopped the states from enforcing their own time-proven real estate lending laws and thus created the raw material that made the current “Credit Crisis” possible?

*** The trillion dollar plus question

If you’re a US taxpayer, you’re going to pay for this fraud so you might as well know who did it to you.

His initials are GB.

You know him well.

But perhaps more interesting is the name of the person who single-handedly rallied first state attorneys general and then fellow governors to fight the creation of these loans and who in the process became Public Enemy #1 to the Bush Administration…

His initials are ES.

If you follow “silly” US political scandals, you’ll recognize his name instantly when you hear it.

And you will *finally* understand why he was quickly and permanently assassinated politically earlier this year.

Had ES been allowed to “live,” he would have been in position to remind everyone every day of who made the current meltdown possible.

Instead, he was silenced very effectively. Not with a bullet in the back of the head, but the net effect was just the same.

So effective was his assassination that no one can even mention his name in connection with today’s crisis without risking ridicule, or worse.