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(Rolling Stone)   Seriously how are we not wielding pitchforks and torches and setting up guillotines for these super villains?   (rollingstone.com ) divider line
    More: Scary, torches  
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8117 clicks; posted to Business » on 19 Mar 2012 at 1:00 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-03-19 01:24:00 PM  
Wait. Let's look at some of the good things Bank of America has done, like...ummm...well, there's...uhhhh...or maybe how about...hmmm, no...well surely you can't overlook...uhhhh...oh never mind.
 
2012-03-19 01:29:38 PM  

offmymeds: Wait. Let's look at some of the good things Bank of America has done, like...ummm...well, there's...uhhhh...or maybe how about...hmmm, no...well surely you can't overlook...uhhhh...oh never mind.


They have a nice logo. And they have ATM's all over the place.
 
2012-03-19 01:29:54 PM  

NewportBarGuy: You can't really break them up because there is no real local level leadership. It's a corporate office with lots of branches and other subsidiaries. You could carve off their branches to other banks, but you'd just be spreading the pie among the other 5 large banks.


You could break them up by state, or at least region. Florida, for instance, is its own entity, with a Florida bank president and all of the rest of the structure down from there.
 
2012-03-19 01:29:58 PM  
Good, but lengthy, article.
 
2012-03-19 01:32:09 PM  

SlothB77: talk about rewriting history. You can't have both sides. You can't say banks were being racists, force them to lend by law, then turn around and say it their scam all along.


I love that defense. "The government made them loan to minorities! Of COURSE those loans were risky!"
 
2012-03-19 01:39:44 PM  

timujin: or at least region


You could try, but investors want to consolidate and get bought out. The direction of banking was formulated by the CitiTravelers merger. Banks want to own their entire financial product line and we've done nothing to stop them. Except for prop trading, we did take that away. Well, eventually. We'll see about that one.

The only way you can stop them is if you repeal Gramm-Leach-Bliley, or write a new bill that institutes the old Glass-Stegall, and that ain't never gonna happen.

We're stuck with these behemoths and the government will do anything to help them because so many Americans do business with them. It's nice to talk about what we could do in theory, but unless the Congressional finance committees feel like breaking them up, it's just never going to happen and investors will push to further consolidate them.

They have better capital plans in place now and lending is tighter, but all it will take is a few years of waiting for them to open the spigots more and we'll be right back where we were. The new generation will want to grab some of that sweet bonus money they get for deals that are risky/large. They'll be smart. they'll buy default swaps. And so will the next guy and the next guy and the next guy. Pretty soon, we'll be right back where we started.
 
2012-03-19 01:40:52 PM  

Lando Lincoln: SlothB77: talk about rewriting history. You can't have both sides. You can't say banks were being racists, force them to lend by law, then turn around and say it their scam all along.

I love that defense. "The government made them loan to minorities! Of COURSE those loans were risky!"


Should we point how how small the CRA default rates were? They never seem to have an answer for that one. It involves numbers. Maybe a nice pie chart?
 
2012-03-19 01:44:23 PM  
But keep voting for that awesome congressional representative that you have. He isn't screwing anyone.
 
2012-03-19 01:53:34 PM  
I have a pitchfork, but I'd rather use my post hole digger.
 
2012-03-19 01:53:36 PM  
This is what happens when business is allowed to buy out nearly every arm of the government.
 
2012-03-19 01:59:18 PM  

SlothB77: You can't say banks were being racists, force them to lend by law, then turn around and say it their scam all along.


If anything like that had ever actually happened, you might have a point. Since nothing like that ever did, I'll summarize your response for those who don't feel like reading into bullshiat any further than they have to:

SlothB77: HERP DERP, BANKS FORCED TO GIVE FREE MONEY TO BLACK PEOPLE

 
2012-03-19 02:03:31 PM  
xanadian: Because I have to finish Mass Effect 3, goddamit!!!

Because I believe they're mafia owned, so have watched them like a hawk, as a result, they never pulled any shiat with me.

Also, I need to hit an ATM machine machine machine machine.

/now banking with 5 banks
 
2012-03-19 02:09:57 PM  

SlothB77: 1992: OMG, Redlining (new window).

2012: Banks and mortgage lenders conspired to create a gigantic volume of very risky home loans, delivering outsize mortgages to dubious borrowers like immigrants without identification, the unemployed and people with poor credit histories.

talk about rewriting history. You can't have both sides. You can't say banks were being racists, force them to lend by law, then turn around and say it their scam all along.


it's like you took the facts, leeched out everything that made them true, then pumped in MSG and preservatives and put the hollow shell back on the shelf with an 'all natural' label.
 
2012-03-19 02:10:10 PM  

lordargent: /now banking with 5 banks


3 here, it makes me feel wealthy to move around my $100 in available cash among 2 credit unions and a savings bank.
 
2012-03-19 02:20:43 PM  
Americans are not hungry enough yet.

The majority of people are complacent and just content enough that they don't want to rock the boat and lose what few comforts they have.

Couple that with a fear of being ostracized by their peers if they actually get agitated and America's seeming disgust with social agitators in general, and you have a big hurdle to overcome.

If we go over the tipping point, we'll get our torches and pitchforks; or rather, our Molotovs and guns.
 
2012-03-19 02:20:52 PM  
Every time I think I can't get more pissed off at BofA someone comes along and scratches a little deeper and shows just how farking corrupt and evil that organization is.
 
2012-03-19 02:21:06 PM  
Their ATM fees are quite expensive, $3.50 if memory serves me correctly. Only two in our small town, and they are the most expensive.

The BP station with a little stand alone machine with a dial up modem is only $2.
 
2012-03-19 02:21:07 PM  

I_C_Weener: NewportBarGuy: what_now: Can I punch a BoA executive in the dick?

These men have no dicks.

Is this true?


Yes, it's true. ...

This man has no dick.
 
2012-03-19 02:23:04 PM  
all of this HAS happened before and I think it's all going to happen again....we're going to get bloody, and we're going to start hurting one another.


And it won't be the middle class doing the hurting, it will be the 1% via the police, National Guard and "private" security firms. Anytime the workers get uppity management comes down hard on them to make sure they stay in line and don't rock the boat. US labor history is full of masscres of the working class, from Homestead to Harlan County.
 
2012-03-19 02:27:55 PM  
I have a garden rake and a couple tiki torches. Can I come along?
 
2012-03-19 02:29:41 PM  

Hagbardr: I have a garden rake and a couple tiki torches. Can I come along?


Do you have any rum?
 
2012-03-19 02:30:43 PM  
Go away. 'batin'.
 
2012-03-19 02:38:36 PM  
We were easily conquered by the banks and the small group of old white men.

All it took was to have the regular folks squabbling over things of little to no consequence while they did all the sleazy back room deals over the years.

Its been a long run, America, but you are sincerely farked so better get used to your masters running the show.

With labels like 'Libs' or 'Repukes' or any of 1000 other names, they divided us so it was child's play to take over, bit by bit, inch by inch until what will be left is a tiny white ruling class, and 320,000,000 serfs.

We are truly heading down into the shiatter and I dont see many ways to alter that course.
 
2012-03-19 02:48:18 PM  
the author's conclusion is right though, our bailouts just encourage this to continue. if we stop bailing these guys out, then they go under and the problem starts to fix itself. they aren't true capitalists - they are colluding fraudsters. without special favors from the government, they would fail spectacularly. and obama, mccain and bush all favored bailouts. good ol' boys clubs from ivy league schools helping each other out.
 
2012-03-19 02:49:36 PM  
My guillotine is set up but it is not very portable. Bring'em over and we'll hear her sing.
 
2012-03-19 02:55:58 PM  
OWS is a joke and needs some serious help with their PR. Protesting like that is pointless nowadays, there is too much money invested in taking groups like that down and making them look like shiftless hippies. Meanwhile, the GOP is running florists and church leaders for elected office because they recite the party mantra the loudest. How many city boards and planning commissions in your city have vacancies? Why don't people on the left vote at the same rate as those on the right? The way to fix this is to find people to run for office and for everyone to vote.

And why should liberals need to have pitchforks and torches? People on the left are better educated and make more money. It's ours to begin with, we're letting the right out hustle us politically.
 
2012-03-19 02:58:57 PM  

Nabb1: How many people even have torches and pitchforks handy, anyway? I could see owning a pitchfork if you do a lot of landscaping at home (in fact, I think there's one in my parents' storage shed), but torches? I think the best I could muster up would be a cordless weed whacker and a Maglite. Granted, you could really bust some heads with that Maglite. That's why cops carry them, you know.


Torches, pitchforks and guillotines are so last century. I recommend flashlights, assault weapons and, well, I suppose guillotines are still okay. Much more dramatic than lethal injection. We need to modernize our angry mobs if we plan to stay competitive in a global marketplace.
 
2012-03-19 03:13:44 PM  

Shostie: Nabb1: EatHam: Nabb1: How many people even have torches and pitchforks handy, anyway?

I have a pitchfork, and some tiki torches. I only have one pitchfork, but I could share the tiki torches. They are even filled with citronella, so our mob will be mosquito free.

Mosquito free is good. Tiki torches are a good idea. My wife bought some cups that look like coconuts and we have those little paper umbrellas. We're going to need some rum.

And this is how an angry mob degenerates into a drunken luau.


Really. BofA just has to surround their HQ with tables offering Mai Tais and pineapple slices and the whole thing goes to hell. The same people who said before the assault "I've got a pitchfork" will soon be saying "I've got a pig, who's got a spit?"
 
2012-03-19 03:22:35 PM  

BurnShrike: We're tried Subby, but the media portrayed us as self-entitled jobless losers who weren't sure what we were mad about.

And people boughtknow it.

So here we are...

 
2012-03-19 03:31:50 PM  
It's because anybody who thinks guillotines and pitchforks are appropriate, or that banks are 'supervillans', are too stupid and lazy to climb out of their mom's basements to actually do anything. Plus they're pussies.
 
2012-03-19 03:33:08 PM  

Debeo Summa Credo: It's because anybody who thinks guillotines and pitchforks are appropriate, or that banks are 'supervillans', are too stupid and lazy to climb out of their mom's basements to actually do anything. Plus they're pussies.


Mr Romney, you're drunk. Go home.
 
2012-03-19 03:33:34 PM  

NewportBarGuy: Lando Lincoln: SlothB77: talk about rewriting history. You can't have both sides. You can't say banks were being racists, force them to lend by law, then turn around and say it their scam all along.

I love that defense. "The government made them loan to minorities! Of COURSE those loans were risky!"

Should we point how how small the CRA default rates were? They never seem to have an answer for that one. It involves numbers. Maybe a nice pie chart?


Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't the CRA default rate pretty high (8-9%)? Isn't it just the small number of CRA loans compared to all other sub-primes (which also default at 8-9%) and the fact they were packaged less often that limited their effect on the melt down?
 
2012-03-19 03:34:37 PM  
If OWS truly needs a leader, why doesn't Matt Taibbi step up and become that leader?

Is he waiting for Gandalf to hand Anduril to him or something?
 
2012-03-19 03:41:54 PM  
This is why. Pitchforks and torches don't do much against these.

They wouldn't hesitate to use them on us if their power was truly threatened.
 
2012-03-19 03:42:11 PM  

Debeo Summa Credo: It's because anybody who thinks guillotines and pitchforks are appropriate, or that banks are 'supervillans', are too stupid and lazy to climb out of their mom's basements to actually do anything. Plus they're pussies.


I wondered when the resident "banks can do no wrong" defender would show up. Tell us again how because banks handed out risky loans and resold them packaged and masked with a fraudulent credit rating, it's all the homeowner's fault the world economy crashed. Maybe you'll finally reach that magic number, and you'll have said it enough times for it to be anything but false.
 
2012-03-19 03:47:18 PM  

fredbox: This is why. Pitchforks and torches don't do much against these.

They wouldn't hesitate to use them on us if their power was truly threatened.


While the A10 seems a little extreme....I wouldn't completely rule it out.

If the police can destroy a whole block (Phily - MOVE assault) with 5 pounds of C4, imagine what the A10 can do to unruly civilians....
 
2012-03-19 03:50:08 PM  

Sergeant Grumbles: Debeo Summa Credo: It's because anybody who thinks guillotines and pitchforks are appropriate, or that banks are 'supervillans', are too stupid and lazy to climb out of their mom's basements to actually do anything. Plus they're pussies.

I wondered when the resident "banks can do no wrong" defender would show up. Tell us again how because banks handed out risky loans and resold them packaged and masked with a fraudulent credit rating, it's all the homeowner's fault the world economy crashed. Maybe you'll finally reach that magic number, and you'll have said it enough times for it to be anything but false.


You mean he does this all the time?
 
2012-03-19 03:51:18 PM  
and the peasants last breath before beheading will be to thank the king....
 
2012-03-19 03:52:23 PM  
I have to agree with Debeo Cumma in His Mother. The LIB-URL protesters were all a buncha pussies. If they had been a Christian conservative, they would have driven a truck full of explosives up to a nursery and blown up a whole load of small children.

Just like Timothy McVeigh.
 
2012-03-19 03:58:09 PM  

rosebud_the_sled: I have to agree with Debeo Cumma in His Mother. The LIB-URL protesters were all a buncha pussies. If they had been a Christian conservative, they would have driven a truck full of explosives up to a nursery and blown up a whole load of small children.

Just like Timothy McVeigh.


You were much better several weeks ago when you convinced me that you evict people from their homes.

1/10
 
2012-03-19 04:01:04 PM  

dj_spanmaster: Sergeant Grumbles: Debeo Summa Credo: It's because anybody who thinks guillotines and pitchforks are appropriate, or that banks are 'supervillans', are too stupid and lazy to climb out of their mom's basements to actually do anything. Plus they're pussies.

I wondered when the resident "banks can do no wrong" defender would show up. Tell us again how because banks handed out risky loans and resold them packaged and masked with a fraudulent credit rating, it's all the homeowner's fault the world economy crashed. Maybe you'll finally reach that magic number, and you'll have said it enough times for it to be anything but false.

You mean he does this all the time?


I didn't take the time to go see what his posts are about, but based off of the headlines...

Clicky
 
2012-03-19 04:03:23 PM  

dj_spanmaster: You were much better several weeks ago when you convinced me that you evict people from their homes.

1/10


I apologize. In my defense, I was eating my lunch and typing one handed. As an act of contrition, I will not release this cage of rats into one of my tenements.
 
2012-03-19 04:04:21 PM  

Lego_Addict: fredbox: This is why. Pitchforks and torches don't do much against these.

They wouldn't hesitate to use them on us if their power was truly threatened.

While the A10 seems a little extreme....I wouldn't completely rule it out.


Well, that certainly got my attention.

/Can I haz your newzletter?
 
2012-03-19 05:04:29 PM  

rosebud_the_sled: I apologize. In my defense, I was eating my lunch and typing one handed. As an act of contrition, I will not release this cage of rats into one of my tenements.


You shouldn't eat while you masturbate
 
2012-03-19 05:40:26 PM  
I can't advocate the hunting down and killing of bankers and the politicians who enable them, but if I did advocate such things, I would certainly advocate the hunting down and killing of bankers and the politicians who enable them.
 
2012-03-19 05:43:02 PM  

Sergeant Grumbles: Debeo Summa Credo: It's because anybody who thinks guillotines and pitchforks are appropriate, or that banks are 'supervillans', are too stupid and lazy to climb out of their mom's basements to actually do anything. Plus they're pussies.

I wondered when the resident "banks can do no wrong" defender would show up. Tell us again how because banks handed out risky loans and resold them packaged and masked with a fraudulent credit rating, it's all the homeowner's fault the world economy crashed. Maybe you'll finally reach that magic number, and you'll have said it enough times for it to be anything but false.


When did I say it was ALL the homeowners' fault? My position has consistently been that the mortgage crisis was the result of a bubble that numerous parties bought into. Fed, banks, investors, rating agencies, financial guarantors, homebuyers, borrowers, Fannie and freddie, etc.

It is the idiots who get their financial news from Rolling Stone who think that banks knowingly concocted an evil plan to crash the economy and lose so much of their own capital that many of them had to get bailed out by the fed, and that all people who bought houses in 2005 for twice as much as the house was sold for in 2000, or who did cash out refis, and who didn't pay back their contractual obligations are just victims of banks loaning them money.
 
2012-03-19 05:47:01 PM  
Strange that the author mentions the $55Trillion in derivatives on the Merrill books that got transferred over to the retail side of BofA, but skipped the obvious:

BofA's retail arm holds something like $1.06 Trillion in deposits. (those are old numbers, I haven't looked in a while).
When/ If BofA crashes, the fdic steps in to "guarantee" deposits (50% return of deposits to customers the first year and remaining 50% the second year up to $250k). The FDIC is backstopped by the Treas. The FDIC doesn't have enough cash on hand to handle an organized or unorganized shut down of BofA. The Treas doesn't have enough cash to do it either. The only option i see is too sell bonds to raise the cash or print another Trillion via the FRB. The FDIC is very good at taking over and shutting down small banks, they do it all the time. But BofA would take years, maybe a decade to unwind. Thjis would crush the FDIC and liquidate its current deposit backup fund during the first week.
 
2012-03-19 06:05:34 PM  

GAT_00: BurnShrike: We tried Subby, but the media portrayed us as self-entitled jobless losers who weren't sure what we were mad about.

And people bought it.

So here we are...

Yeah, as I understand it, protesting to what were nearly legitimate business practices is something only liberals do. Real Americans and conservatives applaud the actions of BOA.


Your post is funny and sad. Funny, because you actually believe this and sad because you're so confident in your ignorance that you're proud to display it.

Still, you're often funny for legitimate reasons, so carry on.
 
2012-03-19 06:29:12 PM  

Debeo Summa Credo: When did I say it was ALL the homeowners' fault? My position has consistently been that the mortgage crisis was the result of a bubble that numerous parties bought into. Fed, banks, investors, rating agencies, financial guarantors, homebuyers, borrowers, Fannie and freddie, etc.


You're still trotting out this stupid line, eh? ....after I soundly thrashed it time and again in countless previous threads? Well, at least you didn't say Barney Frank or the CRA or any other stupid libertarian excuse/distractions did it.

So allow me to correct you again.

The economic collapse was caused by a relaxation of federal regulations regarding key sectors of the financial industry, including but not limited to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act that was passed in 1999 which repealed Glass-Stegal (which existed since 1933) and made investment banks, commercial banks and insurance companies much more cozy. Before then, they were generally separate industries. After then, banks consolidated into super firms that offered everything, like financial Walmarts.

This allowed the banks a lot more flexibility to deal in Credit Default Swaps (and Collateralized Debt Obligations and synthetic CDOs) that were a relatively new financial derivative that came about in the mid 90s. CDSes were exempt from Federal oversight and regulation because they were considered neither futures nor securities and so were outside the jurisdiction of the SEC (and you can thank the The Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 for that, which was also responsible for the Enron fiasco).

The shiat really hit the fan with the relaxation of the net capital rule in 2004 (which regulated how much banks could borrow). This enabled investment banks to substantially increase the level of debt they were taking on, fueling the growth in mortgage-backed securities supporting subprime mortgages.

The stage is set: You have these omni-banks that now manage your child's bank account, issue loans to business, short sell stocks and wheel and deal in the derivatives market all under the same roof. They have more financial leverage than they've ever had before and they are moving most of their collateral into derivatives because that's where they can escape taxes, regulations and oversight. But more importantly: They could buy credit default swaps against the same mortgages they issued out to homeowners, thereby putting themselves in a win-win situation. In time, the CDS derivatives started being worth more than the mortgages themselves -- in some cases up to 10x more.

Furthermore, the banks were bundling these securities and selling and reselling them to each other, amplifying their value in a process called netting, which is so convoluted I won't explain here, but here's the gist:. One bank buys a CDS from another bank, and if the other bank can't meet calls they can sell the CDS to a third bank with a higher premium to make up the difference. If the first bank fails, the second bank will default on its CDS to the third bank, collapsing the third bank as well. Oh, and because CDS contracts are private, the third bank doesn't know that their CDS is tied to the first bank. Understand? ...neither do I.

Why would banks do something this incestuous? Because it makes the CDS more safe and less risky, but it makes the whole system itself far more fragile because everyone is tied to everyone else, creating a tenuous financial domino set. The conditions caused by this created an amplification spiral that spun out of control exponentially, at one point escalating the derivatives market to the tune of $62.2 trillion in speculative bookmarks, which is more money than has ever existed in the history of the world. If you think this sounds like a crazy pyramid scheme, you're right. That's exactly what it was. And it crashed. Like all pyramid schemes eventually do.

When the bubble popped, margin calls wiped out the three largest investment firms in the United States (the ones they called "too big to fail"), bringing Lehman Brothers, AIG and Merrill Lynch to their knees. That type of money simply did not exist.

If you're wondering how much the mortgage market had a part in this, the answer is: Not much. It may have been the fuse, but it was not the powderkeg. According to the The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission: [Fannie & Freddie] contributed to the crisis, but were not a primary cause. GSE mortgage securities essentially maintained their value throughout the crisis and did not contribute to the significant financial firm losses that were central to the financial crisis. The GSEs participated in the expansion of subprime and other risky mortgages, but they followed rather than led Wall Street and other lenders into subprime lending.

If the financial crash was simply due to mortgages alone, we wouldn't be in this mess today. It would have been a very manageable and a very fixable mess, backed by real assets. The bubble on its surface was at least containable. The only thing that would've happened is any subprime issuing banks that overleveraged would have gone under and rightfully so. They make high risk usuries, they pay the price (it's like the old adage: "If you owe the bank $1 million, that's your problem. If you owe the bank $1 billion, that's the bank's problem).

In short:

The $1.3 trillion subprime bubble (of which Mae/Mac only processed about 30% in mortgage-backed securities; they do not issue loans themselves) did not cripple the economy.

The $62 trillion derivatives market which bet against the subprime bubble did.
 
2012-03-19 06:39:50 PM  
OOOOooooo . . . . a Rolling Stone political commentary . . . . I'm sure this is a purely unbiased and objective opinion . . . .
 
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