June 26, 2008

The National Review destroys Angelo Mozilo, Countrywide Toxic Mortgage, Chris Dodd, Kent Conrad and our corrupt political system

This editorial was so good, so "spot on", and you know I never do this, but here it is in its entirety.

Folks, if this BofA/Countrywide Rescue bill goes through, and Bush stupidly signs it, then you'll know just how powerful the REIC is, how deep the corruption and bribery run, and how screwed the United States of America (and your kids, and their kids, and their kids) will be.

It's not just Angelo Mozilo who we now want to see hauled off to jail. No, now it's United States Senators and Representatives too.

Countrywide Corruption

By the Editors - National Review

The U.S. Senate is about to enact a massive subsidy for Countrywide Financial less than a week after revelations that the company’s “Friends of Angelo” sweetheart-loan program included two U.S. senators. It seems unthinkable, but it’s true. What’s worse? One of the two senators sponsored the bill.

The principal author of the Dodd-Shelby housing-bailout bill is Sen. Christopher Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat who chairs the Senate Banking Committee, which has jurisdiction over the mortgage market. Last week, Portfolio magazine revealed that Dodd was one of two U.S. senators who benefited from a program under which Countrywide Financial gave loans at favorable terms to the influential and the powerful. The other senator was Kent Conrad, a Democrat from North Dakota.

The allegations against Conrad are damning enough. Though he denies having known he received preferential treatment, Conrad admitted to a Wall Street Journal reporter that he called Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo to ask for a loan on the advice of former Fannie Mae CEO Jim Johnson, another beneficiary of the program. (Johnson resigned from Barack Obama’s running-mate vetting team after his involvement in the program was revealed.)

But as powerful as Conrad is, the allegations against Dodd are more disturbing because he wields so much power over Countrywide’s fortunes and because he has used that power to benefit Countrywide. According to Portfolio’s calculations, the preferential loan rates Dodd received on two mortgages could end up saving him $75,000. (Like Conrad, Dodd denies knowing that he received preferential treatment.)

The troubling nature of this arrangement becomes clear when one looks at the fine print of the Dodd-Shelby housing bill. Under the bill, mortgage lenders — of which Countrywide is the largest in the U.S. — would agree to renegotiate their most troubled home loans in exchange for a federal guarantee on those loans. If the borrowers who took out those troubled loans end up defaulting, the government would cover any losses the mortgage lenders incur.

Under the Dodd-Shelby bill, a fee collected from the government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would fund this program. The House version of the bill would fund the program with tax dollars. Either way, the program would be “a government buyout of problem mortgages disguised as a refinancing plan,” as David C. John of the Heritage Foundation puts it in his analysis.

Defenders of Dodd’s bill insist that it’s not a bailout, because the lenders have to write down 15 percent of the value of a troubled loan in order to qualify for the program. The lenders, they insist, are taking a loss and bearing the consequences of the irresponsible lending in which they engaged during the housing boom.

But this argument omits the fact that if a troubled loan goes into foreclosure — a most likely destination for many of them — the lender faces an average loss of one-third of the value of the loan. Faced with this kind of loss, many lenders have an incentive to work something out with borrowers anyway, and many already have, taking advantage of the Bush administration’s voluntary Hope Now program to do just that.

The kind of loans that lenders would dump on the government under the Dodd-Shelby bailout would be the most radioactive on their books — the ones likely to default anyway. So concluded the Congressional Budget Office, which found that up to 35 percent of the loans refinanced through the Dodd-Shelby program would eventually default. The lenders wouldn’t have any exposure to those losses — they would be paid back through the fund created by the Dodd-Shelby bill.

And this is where we come full circle, back to Sen. Dodd and his sweetheart deal from Countrywide. The Dodd-Shelby housing-bailout bill would be bad public policy under any conditions. Lenders are already under severe pressure to write down loans for borrowers who still have a chance to make it. The bill is overwhelming slanted toward protecting lenders, like Countrywide, that lowered their standards dramatically on a bet that home prices would never go down and subsequently find themselves holding a lot of bad debt.

Congress should launch a full investigation of Countrywide’s program to influence the powerful; that much should go without saying. But if the Senate passes the Dodd-Shelby housing bailout before such an investigation can run its course — especially if that investigation finds that members of Congress were improperly influenced — it will have allowed Countrywide to take the money and run.


Anonymous said...

Please, please, please take the time to copy this article and forward om to your senators-congresspeopl Right NOW with your comments of outrage. They WILL get the message.

Yesterday, I e-mailed Barbara Boxer and I received the following response ONE DAY LATER.


Thank You. DoIT NOW.

Anonymous said...

•Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., received $20,000 in campaign contributions from Countrywide Financial Corp. over the past two decades, more than any senator except Barack Obama, D-Ill., who received $22,900 in that period. A June 19 story on Page A3 incorrectly reported that Dodd had received $25,000 and was the Senate's top recipient of Countrywide contributions during that time. The incorrect information was published on the website of the Center for Responsive Politics, which gets information from the Federal Election Commission. Both the center and the FEC corrected their figures on Wednesday.


Who has mortgaged his new mansion on the south side of Chicago?

Anonymous said...

Senator Boxer 1 day response to e-mail comments:

Dear Friend:
Thank you for contacting me regarding high gasoline prices. I appreciate the opportunity to hear your views on this important issue, and I share your concerns.

Gasoline prices reached an all-time high this year, and costs for food and other basic necessities are rising drastically. As millions of Americans struggle under this increasing burden, oil companies continue to report massive, record-breaking profits - $123 billion last year alone. This is unacceptable, and I want to assure you that I am working hard to lower prices and protect Americans from price gouging.

I am proud to be an original co-sponsor of S.3044, the Consumer-First Energy Act of 2008. This important bill would impose a windfall profits tax on oil companies to discourage price gouging and to help consumers offset the high costs of energy products, punish any country or company colluding in setting the price of oil, and limit excessive speculation in oil markets.

S.3044 also includes a provision that is similar to legislation I authored that would require the Federal Trade Commission to investigate possible manipulation of gasoline prices any time prices rise rapidly.

Unfortunately, on June 10, 2008, the Senate minority blocked further consideration of S.3044. At a time when so many Americans are struggling to make ends meet and having to make the impossible choice between buying food for their families and filling up the gas tank, I am deeply disturbed that some of my colleagues prevented this important bill from moving forward.

Opening up drilling in the United States is not the best way to achieve lower gas prices. For example, drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) would provide us with six months of oil at most, and at great cost. Furthermore, it would be more than a decade before we saw any of that oil. Ultimately, we need to move away from our dependence on oil and gasoline by developing renewable and efficient energy technologies. Right now, we need to go after the big oil companies that are holding Americans hostage with their exorbitantly high prices.

Americans deserve better than oil companies that gouge consumers in order to make huge profits, and Congress needs to take action to help alleviate this crisis. Rest assured, I will continue working for the passage of S.3044, and I will keep fighting to help Americans enjoy fair and reasonable energy prices.

Again, thank you for writing to me. Please do not hesitate to contact me in the future on this or other issues that concern you.
Barbara Boxer
United States Senator

Please visit my website at http://boxer.senate.gov

Anonymous said...

The bailout is coming HP'ers whether you like it or not. This is only the beginning. More bailout bills will be on the way. Don't you all look so damn stupid now? You folks saved your money, worked hard and sacrificed and now the government will help (with your tax dollars) people like me. LOL, LOL, LOL.

Anonymous said...

For a rag of pathetic journalism, they are for once right. I'm surprised they wrote it since it is their supporters/readers that will be shocked when they find out their political party was the most culpable and directly involved in this quagmire. The mortgage mess is because of the deregulation (another way of saying free-capitalism and greed run amuck). Remember how every Republican scoffed when Dems said something should be done about predatory lending practices. Also, Mozillo, Enron, and the like are conservatives who are not fans of regulation so this is what we get when their lot (Bush Admin) gets into power. Dodd and Conrad will be "mini-me" types compared to the larger than lifes "Dr. Evils" soon to be exposed in all of this.

Anonymous said...

OIL $140.05!!!

DOW DOWN 293!!!





Anonymous said...

This is such a joke.I cannot believe how corrupt our system is. Maybe I should have bought 10 homes with liar loans too.Casey serin will be working at bofa soon teaching underwriters how to actually underwrite a loan.

Mark in San Diego said...

The Bailout Bill is DOA - here is how is will shakeout - it will pass, and Bush will veto it, and once Bush gives Republican's political cover "he did it not me". . .they will not vote to override. . .DEAD ON ARRIVAL. . .

Anonymous said...

BRAVO to the the Editors of the National Review.


Anonymous said...

I'll say it again: Angelo Mozilo is not going to jail. America is distracted by high gas prices and their depleted 401k's and their upside-down mortgages.

They have no idea how it happened, and are not on average smart enough to connect the dots and know they should be angry at people like Dodd/Conrad/Mozilo.

Nothing, nothing, NOTHING will happen to these people.

Anonymous said...

Dow only down 350 points today. Where's the crash?

Anonymous said...

Ladies and Gentleman, I give you the ultimate REIC RealWHORE prostitute of eternity award.

This douchebag is Ebaying her home and HERSELF and her 2 CHILDREN.
(what a liability).

The bidding starts at $ .99 with NO TAKERS SO FAR.

Have you EVER seen (outside Politicians which have their own vicious down-in-the-ditch low-rent status)an BIGGER REAL ESTATE WHORE THAN THIS? I am not kidding. Here IT is.

http://www.abcactionnews.com/news/local ... 66ae138149

Keep this away from your children. It's not a pretty (in any way) sight...


Anonymous said...

Where is the guy that always comments on the Dow going "up" and how the rest of us are losers?
hmmmm, not around anymore, I guess.

Let's see. To be a "loser" in his mind is to:

Not be a debt slave.
Not have an anchor around your neck (house).
Be financially solvent and free.
Be able to put away all your monthly savings from renting into high-yield accounts.
hmmmm, who's a loser again?

Anonymous said...

well, i kind of think this bail out is going to happen. I don't think dodd and conrad sponsored the bill because of the treatment they received. rather I think it is a condition for bofa to keep CFC from going bust, something brokered in the back room.

Anonymous said...

Remember how every Republican scoffed when Dems said something should be done about predatory lending practices


oh sure, it is the big bad republican's fault.

give me a break. the dems are in control. where is the predatory lending reform legislation?????? Huh?

republicans == dems

take your dem-sheeple blinders off!

Anonymous said...

"Ladies and Gentleman, I give you the ultimate REIC RealWHORE prostitute of eternity award.

This douchebag is Ebaying her home and HERSELF and her 2 CHILDREN.
(what a liability)."

I sent the same story and following links to Keith before, but I guess he's too good to post my sh!t:



Major slu+

Anonymous said...


please join me tomorrow, friday, HPers

Anonymous said...

It's a done deal....

You can take it to the bank!!

Shoot straight and keep your powder dry.

Refuse to buy overpriced said...

"Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., received $20,000 in campaign contributions from Countrywide Financial Corp. over the past two decades, more than any senator except Barack Obama, D-Ill., who received $22,900 in that period"


Bitterly Oppose

Barack Obama's

Bail Out

Anonymous said...

RayNLA on the Housing Bailout Bill...

This too shall pass!


Anonymous said...

Eighty Three to Nine Keith. That's how the Senate voted this week. Please review that "Who Owns You" clip from George Carlin you posted earlier this week.

Tangelo Is Bulletproof

Chris said...

Oh Superman where are you now
When everything's gone wrong somehow?
The men of steel, these men of power
Are losing control by the hour

Too many men, too many people
Making too many problems
And there's not much love to go 'round
Can't you see this is the land of confusion?

This is the world we live in
And these are the hands we're given
Use them and let's start trying
To make it a place worth living in

This is the song "Land of Confusion" by Genesis. The band Disturbed did a remake a couple years ago that's very good. Both videos are on YouTube.

Anonymous said...

now, I thought that the only people that were crooks and thieves and criminals were black people and mexicans. Oh so if you rob, steal and undermine laws legally you aren't a crook, thief, or criminal. I am sorry I forgot white people don't do in on street corners or with guns but the damage white privledge brings has distroyed this country. And they are white. No they are pure and free of the desire to harm others. Or that is what they would like the world to believe.

Anonymous said...

Our useless political monkeys have run out of options, and are now trying to push this massive bail-out (doomed-to-fail tax-hike) onto the public.

Even if this were to pass, it will make matters far worse for this country.

Only the bankers, wall-street and Mozilo-type crony's will get saved on this one.

Anonymous said...

While I agree the bailout is probably wrong, I can't help but find the National Review's position completely bogus. In typical conservative style, they oppose helping the little guys while remaining silent as the rich make off with the treasury.

I have no doubt they approved of the S&L bailout, the tax cuts for the rich, the existence of tax shelters for the rich, the huge salaries for CEOs of even decimated corporations, the military-industrial complex, taxpayer-funded research with the resulting product patents given to corporations, etc etc etc the list is too long to recount. I know the Review also supports the trillion dollars we're spending in Iraq to destroy tens of thousands of innocent civilians.

Why do conservatives worship the wealthy and do everything they can to harm anyone else? Why are they so indifferent to the powerless but fawn over the powerful?

BECAUSE THEY'RE INTELLECTUALLY LAZY, AS ARE ALL CONSERVATIVES. Supporting the powerful makes it more likely you'll be on the winning side. If there's one thing conservatives love more than money it's picking or being the winner no matter if that position is ethical, moral or correct.

In short, they're brainstems, incapable of understanding or experiencing the higher emotions of developed humans. That would of course make conservatives SUBhuman.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Dodd might have gotten a deal worth a WHOPPING $75,000! Man, is that National Review on top of things or what?

I guess they were not around when republicans were getting millions in kickbacks from Abramoff and a host of other conservative parasites.

I think the Review just might get a Pulitzer for this one!

Anonymous said...

"Make an exception due to the fact that the borrower is a girlie man"

Mozillo on giving lawrence yun a prefered interest rate in 2006.

Anonymous said...

No senator would sell themselves
for the kind of money or special favors we are seeing here. It's got to be in the millions of dollars to precipitate a bailout such as this.

Unless there are some major, as yet undisclosed compensation agreements, this scandal is simply a witch hunt.

That leads us back to this question:


Casey Serin said...

These senators and congresspeople make me look like an infallible saint by comparison!!

Still napping the days away on my parents' couch... have fun working 3rd and 4th jobs to pay for sloths like me. Sweet deal!! :-)

Anonymous said...

If anyone is looking to refinance or get a first mortgage, make sure you give Countrywide a call. After their sales rep goes through the motions of offering all the standard mortgage types, say those are all good but I was looking to get the "Dodd special or the Dodd mortgage". That should cause a moment of silence.

Anonymous said...

bitterrenter said...

Why do conservatives worship the wealthy and do everything they can to harm anyone else? Why are they so indifferent to the powerless but fawn over the powerful?

BECAUSE THEY'RE INTELLECTUALLY LAZY, AS ARE ALL CONSERVATIVES. Supporting the powerful makes it more likely you'll be on the winning side. If there's one thing conservatives love more than money it's picking or being the winner no matter if that position is ethical, moral or correct.

I believe you are describing America in general. Replace "conservatives" with "Americans".

I believe it is media marketing that has done this. Peter Gabriel has a song "We Do What We're Told".

We have been told to be consumer monkeys for so long that we no longer think about anything else. We don't seem to be capable of critical thinking any longer.

You keep throwing out the political side of this, which turns it into an "us vs. them" debate. We are them and they are us.

I See Debt People, walking around like regular people. They don't see each other. They only see what they want to see... They're everywhere.

Anonymous said...


"BECAUSE THEY'RE INTELLECTUALLY LAZY, AS ARE ALL CONSERVATIVES....they're brainstems, incapable of understanding or experiencing the higher emotions..."

The more intellectual you are, the less emotional you are. I think you are confusing "intellectual" with "liberally indoctrinated".