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No, Americans Are Not “All To Blame” for the Financial Crisis: Exposing the big lie of the post-crash economy

ECONOMY MARCH 9, 2014

The simple truth is that the Banks planned and consciously marketed the preconditions for the Mortgage Meltdown much more carefully designed, planned, and consciously marketed than any other destructive event in American History. The purpose was simply to fulfill the primary plank of the Communist Manifesto: to abolish all individual, family, and personal private property interests in real estate.  We have to get passed this whole notion that “we the people” are to blame.  We are the victims—let the perpetrators pay (and not live to be old rich men like those who marketed cigarettes knowing about the carcinogenic effects—or individual cars understanding the dangers both to individuals and the environment).

Among my favorite anecdotes of the mortgage-industry decadence that preceded the global financial crisis is the one about Ameriquest’s wind machine. A motivational tool for managers, it made its appearance in the late ’90s at an executive conference at Las Vegas’s MGM Grand Hotel, where the future subprime leader hooked up a powerful fan to a plastic tent. Inside, exuberant branch managers jumped around amid a cascade of cash, allowed to keep as many swirling bills as they could grab.

That was how it went at mortgage-firm retreats: Here, a money-grabbing contest; there, a round of ritual chanting—“The power of yes! The power of yes!”—at a 2004 Washington Mutual gathering that was like the high ceremony of some bizarre money cult. Before long such incentivizing was part of the daily culture, if not official policy. Countrywide, for example, had a marketing program called the “High-Speed Swim Lane” that linked the bonuses of sales reps working in football-field-sized call centers to the volume of loans they originated. Compressing the programs initials—and cutting to the chase—employees nicknamed it “The Hustle.”

Mere excess was never enough for these companies. Though we’re all aware, by now, of the crookedness that infected the mortgage business last decade, the particulars are still striking. Did you know, for instance, that WMC Mortgage Corporation, owned by General Electric, hired former strippers and an ex-porn actress to entice brokers into selling their mortgages, according to a report by the Center for Public Integrity? Or that Wells Fargo gave its mortgage stars all-expense-paid vacations to Cancun and the Bahamas and treated them to private performances by Aerosmith, the Eagles, and Elton John? Or that New Century sent top loan sales reps to Porsche driving school?

The upshot is clear enough: With Wall Street’s demand for mortgages unending and some loan producers managing to book up to 70 loans per day, the system didn’t just crash. It was brought down.

But we’ve also been made to understand that subprime lenders and their Wall Street funders didn’t act alone. Instead, they were aided by the avarice of the American people, who were not victims of the crash so much as accomplices in it. Respondents to a Rasmussen poll done during the throes of the crisis overwhelmingly blamed “individuals who borrowed more than they could afford” (54 percent) over Wall Street (25 percent). To this day, the view is widespread and bipartisan: Main Street was an essential cause of the meltdown. The enemy was us.

“It all goes back to the increase in the tolerance for debt,” David Brooks wrote a couple of years ago. The Brookings Institution, meanwhile, has argued that of all the possible crisis narratives, “ ‘everyone was at fault’ comes closest to the truth.” The “wider society” must face the music, it said in a 2009 paper. “People in all types of institutions and as individuals became blasé about risk-taking and leverage.”

Or, as Michael Lewis, our financial-writer laureate, observed: “The tsunami of cheap credit … was temptation, offering entire societies the chance to reveal aspects of their characters they could not normally afford to indulge.” Reveal themselves, they did, and it wasn’t pretty. Writing for Vanity Fair, Lewis quoted at length Dr. Peter Whybrow, a British neuroscientist at UCLA, who posited that human beings have “the core of the average lizard.” Lewis, running with the analogy, relayed Whybrow’s conclusion, which was that “the succession of financial bubbles, and the amassing of personal and public debt” were “simply an expression of the lizard-brained way of life.”

Is that not the truth?

Justice League

No, Americans Are Not All To Blame for the Financial Crisis: Exposing the big lie of the post-crash economy

 

mong my favorite anecdotes of the mortgage-industry decadence that preceded the global financial crisis is the one about Ameriquest’s wind machine. A motivational tool for managers, it made its appearance in the late ’90s at an executive conference at Las Vegas’s MGM Grand Hotel, where the future subprime leader hooked up a powerful fan to a plastic tent. Inside, exuberant branch managers jumped around amid a cascade of cash, allowed to keep as many swirling bills as they could grab.

That was how it went at mortgage-firm retreats: Here, a money-grabbing contest; there, a round of ritual chanting—“The power of yes! The power of yes!”—at a 2004 Washington Mutual gathering that was like the high ceremony of some bizarre money cult. Before long such incentivizing was part of the daily…

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WHAT A FARCE! Quel Decepcion mas Grande! Californians TAKE NOTE: the Homeowners’ Bill of Rights is a PLACEBO and neither the State Legislature nor the Attorney General will do anything for you!

Because of my recent association with Mid-Cities Escrow in Downey, I ended up spending Wednesday evening at the Whittier Community Center to listen to retiring California Assembly Majority Leader Charles Calderon, California Department of Justice Attorney Brian Nelson, and several others explain how much absolute nothing the state of California is doing to prevent the erosion of property rights in this state.

Oh there was abundant fake sympathy and useless non-advice handed out but AT LEAST the State Government showed it cared enough to pretend to educate the people, right?  It was all pretense, it was all fake, it was all pointless.  Californians basically have been thrown a few wet sponges to sop up the blood from the mortal wounds on their bleeding rights to integrity of contract and their right to own property.

State Assemblyman Calderon explained, somewhat gingerly, that “politics” was to blame: by which he meant though he could not say that the Banking interests and their minions own this state and only a radical revolution will change that.

Citizen after Citizen stood up and told their horror stories of negotiating or otherwise dealing with JP Morgan Chase, the Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Citibank, and GMAC.  The reality is that the much ballyhooed California Homeowners’ Bill of Rights, passed by the legislature and signed into law last July, is a PLACEBO, and not a very sweetly sugar coated one at at that.

To his credit, State DOJ Attorney Brian Nelson briefly mentioned that this state’s tradition of non-judicial foreclosure has created problems for homeowners.  To his discredit, State DOJ Attorney Brian Nelson, in response to my question about whether anyone in the Attorney General’s Office was concerned about the unconstitutionality of California Civil Code §2924 et seq., merely said that the California Homeowners’ Bill of Rights at least might have overruled the holding of Gomes v. Countrywide Home Loanthat a California homeowner does not even have standing to ask who owns his loan.  See,192 Cal.App.4th 1149, 121 Cal.Rptr.3d 819, 11 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 2322, 2011 Daily Journal D.A.R. 2681 (February 18, 2011, Review denied May 18, 2011).

Nobody wants to deal with the critical problems of how the California Civil Code as enhanced and implemented by the Bank-Controlled Lawyers, Judges, and Legislators has created an impossible situation where the letter of the law means nothing because the express rules of the California Commercial Code and Anglo-American Common Law are directly contrary to how the State and Federal Courts apply and enforce non-judicial foreclosure in this state: WITH NO RULES OF CONSISTENCY OR PROOF OF STANDING OR OWNERSHIP AT ALL.

Non-Judicial Foreclosure is the Communist Manifesto’s dream technique of expropriating private property through centralized credit.  Private property is rapidly evaporating in this country, and neither the National Mortgage Settlement (with the Big Five Banks) nor the California Independent Monitor Program, nor any other branch or office of the State or Federal Government has any intention of addressing these basic, systemic problems.

Of course, nobody dared to mention how the Communist Manifesto of February 1848 is about to be fulfilled in its most basic planks and propositions: the abolition of private property in real estate and the abolition of the family as the basic unit of society.

For further information call Liana Peshkapia-Cadena at Mid-Cities Escrow in Downey: (562) 904-3151 or (562) 904-3152, Facsimile: (562) 861-2251.

Lenten Reflections on Deception or Murder: which is the Highest (most heinous, offensive, injurious) Crime known to Man?

If the primary focus of my legal and political life concerns the enhancement and preservation individual freedom from governmental control and the norms of technocratic/corporate society, my primary philosophical concern is to expand and deepen my own understanding, and I would hope, the understanding of others, of the nature and dimensions of truth*.

Did anyone else ever try to give up lying or “judging unfairly” for Lent?  (Most people might call the latter “being mean” or “bullying”).  It’s so much easier to give up coffee or tea or lemonade.  Most ordinary humans, if we can “to our own selves be true”, would find it difficult to go through a single day without abstracting, oversimplifying, recharacterizing, or otherwise restructuring the truth—in other words, without lying about anything.

Back during the middle-to-last years of the George W. Bush Administration, a fairly popular bumper-sticker read, “Nobody died when Clinton lied.”  Whether you believe George W. lied only about “Weapons of Mass Destruction” as chief among the reasons for invading Iraq, or whether you believe he lied about 9/11 and everything from the counting of the Florida ballots in 2000 through his initiation of the Bank Bailout after the election in 2008, George W. Bush undoubtedly told some devastatingly fatal lies.   In that regard, Bush stands in fairly good company.  Deception and trickery of various sorts lay at the roots of the Franco-Prussian War, the Spanish American War, the U.S. entry into World War I, and the U.S. entry into World War II.  Hitlers’ preposterous lies concerning “Polish aggression” as a cause for the Nazi invasion in September 1939 are legendary, as was the peculiarly deceptive nature of the Von Ribbentrop-Molotov (aka “Stalin-Hitler”) pact partitioning Poland between Germany and the Soviet Union.   These were lies that killed millions.  By contrast the uncountable deaths of Afghan and Iraqi civilians are by no one estimated to exceed one single million (by very much) since 2003.  So lies lead to death, but war and murder and the “sacrifice” of young healthy men and women as warriors constitutes a huge part of human history.   The meaning of death is fairly obvious, except of course in extraordinary cases like Karen Ann Quinlan and Terry Schiavo, where the correlation between physical health and brain death has created a modern moral crisis in rare instances with population-wide implications (especially for the ever increasing population of elderly citizens).   The meaning of “truth” is much murkier, and much harder to tie down, or make clear to anyone.  In the courtroom context, “truth” is whatever a skillful lawyer can use rhetoric to convince 12 jurors to believe and vote for.  In the scientific realm, “peer review” of articles largely determines truth and credibility—and under “Daubert” this same standard invades and has vast consequences in the legal context in an era where no serious litigation takes place without expert witnesses.  In the early 17th century a “peer review” panel of scholars belonging to the Office of the Holy Inquisition in Rome threatened Galileo with the most severe of penalties if he did not recant, and yet he is reputed to have muttered under his breath “e pur si muove.”  We now believe we know that Galileo had the higher claim to truth, even though he was forced to recant or suffer the same penalty that met a young maiden named Jean d’Arc when she refused to deny that her visions were true, and refused to affirm that they were the product of the Devil.

Revealing the truth, or stating an unpopular truth, then, can lead to death as certainly as lying or dissembling.   John Brown believed he waged a private war for the truth when he set Kansas on fire and then tried to seize the U.S. Armory at Harper’s Ferry.  Once John Brown’s body was a-moulding in the grave, his dream of a bloody civil war which would free the slaves was realized, and his role in starting that war is not to be underestimated.  But is it historically true that the war of 1861-65 freed the slaves? Or did the majority of the Black African population of America remain in de facto slavery through 1917 and the American entry into World War I?  Or even until 1942 and the American entry into World War II?  Or even until the Civil Rights Acts of 1948-1964 outlawed, successively, lynchings (1948) and discrimination in the facilities of interstate commerce (1964)?  What is the truth about the wars that redefined America and the world while slaughtering millions?  Was World War II really (in Studs Turkel’s words) the one really “Good War?”

As Japan smolders today in radioactive fallout and the threat of nuclear holocaust due to its dependence on nuclear power, one has to wonder how the Japanese people did not learn the “truth” about the destructive nature of the split atom from their uniquely fatal “true” experiences in August 1945.  I would have imagined that Japan would have been the least enthusiastic consumer of nuclear energy.  But oblivion born of political memory and economic prosperity change the perception of “truth” almost as much as intentional lies and misrepresentations.

What really happened on 9/11/01 between Boston Logan, Lower Manhattan, the Pentagon, and Pennsylvania?  How many skyscraper-towers fell in New York City due to airplane crashes and associated fires on that day of infamy?  3?  2?  none? There are those alive today who believe each of those answers.  I happen to be one who believes the latter.  But that is because I so firmly agree with the motto, “When Clinton lied, no one died.”  (But when Bush lied, the world fried.)  Socrates is said to have corrupted the youth of Greece by advocating his own peculiar dissection of the truth.  Was he killed by fear of the truth or by a genuine belief that his methods and works were dangerous?  Or was he just killed by the Beastly Babbity Bourgeois Bores of post-Periclean Athens?

Philosophy fairly clearly teaches us that on one level, at least, we all have to recognize that any absolute definition of truth is destined to be a lie, or at the very least to generate lies and deception.  One on optimistic level, as I look at the hills around Santa Fe from my fifth floor balcony at La Fonda, the blue sky is only slightly hazy at the horizon and the hills or low mountains to the northeast, behind St. Francis’ Cathedral, have residual patches of snow, while those to the southwest of town do not.  It is a beautiful Spring day in one of the best and finest spots in North America.  What is “true” about this statement?  What is true about what I see?  The sun is not in my eye but clearly illuminates a town which has grown at least 300% since I first visited here here as a child.  There is not a cloud in the sky above, and only a few very low clouds hovering above the sky up and around.  The leaves on the trees are either just nascent buds or not out at all.  Most tree branches are barren, although again even from this low altitude (5th Floor) vantage point there is a difference between the north and the south looking views (more barren branches in the north, more just barely growing leaves on the south.

Is any of this true?  Is any of this real?  It so seems to me, and I doubt that many people (if any) would argue with my general characterization of the sky.  But then I look at St. Francis’ Cathedral, and the rather grotesquely purple-draped crucifix planted in front of it (purple for Lent).   I am not R.C. but have a great appreciation for the majesty and role of the Christian Church in the West.   I grew up an Episcopalian—basically of an “Anglo-Catholic lite” variety.  In my Sunday school days we argued over such things as why glaciers and the ice ages weren’t mentioned in the Bible while “Noah’s Flood” was, and what would happen to the English Church if England (all or part) were ever again covered with glacial ice as it most certainly was less than 15,000 years ago, and what would happen to the Freedom Trail in Boston if New England were glaciated again?  In short, my religious upbringing did not disallow the scientific view of the world, of evolution, and of man’s animal origins and nature.

I look at St. Francis’ Cathedral and the purple draped crucifix standing out in front again.  What is true and what is false?  What is real and what is fantasy?  And above all, which is the greater crime: deception or murder?

In the United States today, no one is ever executed for fraud, although life sentences are routinely meted out—(I for one have never understood why life in prison is an improvement over death; I have spent a lifetime total of 60 days in Federal Custody and rather than stay longer I would choose death any day).  In a German movie from the early 1990s, Schrechklische Maedschen, (“Nasty girl”) an ironic twist was when a distinguished citizen of the town, reputed to have been in the underground resistance during World War II, was revealed to have been not only not a resister but an enthusiastic Nazi who arranged to have an itinerant Jewish salesman tried and hanged as a swindler; in the context of the movie, this was portrayed as one of the great abuses of Nazi sympathizers on the less than epic, mundane, local level.  The Common Law of England, and the Civil Law of Europe, did not always forbid execution for swindling or ordinary commercial fraud (in fact most “felonies” were originally hanging offenses, including for example horse thievery).  Note at sidebar: if capital punishment were allowed for fraud today it seems certain that the entire executive corps of Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase, would all be eligible to be twisting slowly in the breeze, and most mortgage-lending banks, investment, financial service companies would be entirely without upper level employees of any kind and very few middle level employees.

And yet I digress.  There was a time in England, in the 18th Century, when pickpockets were hanged when caught picking pockets.  And where in all of England were there ever more pickpockets in operations than at public hangings by Newgate prison, including the public hangings of pickpockets.  So stealing was bad and justified state-sanctioned murder.  Hmmm….

Today, possibly under the influence of of Karl Marx, added to a substrate laid by Jesus Christ, we do not think that theft is as bad as murder, and crimes such as led to stonings in Jesus’ time (such as adultery), are now capital only in Iran and a few adjacent countries depending on how the wind is blowing, apparently, although Saudi Arabia has executed its own princesses for sexual crimes in the modern (even the Reagan) era.

The crucifix draped in translucent purple in fron of St. Francis’ Cathedral is haunting me still.   Royal purple is not translucent.  The purple of mourning is not translucent.  A crucifix draped in translucent purple gauze is almost as tacky as the plastic BVMs (“Blessed Virgin Mary”s) that were once all so common on the lawns in LMC immigrant neighborhoods back East.

And yet the reality of the purple crucifix is that we are in Lent, one week past the Annunciation of the Coming of Christ by the Angel Gabriel to a certain unwed (and probably rather ethnic-looking) mother named Mary took place (the Annunciation, celebrated on March 25 or the nearest Sunday of each year, also serves to warn the world that only 9 months (270 days,  of shopping time remain until Christmas….).  Lent is the time (40 days and 40 nights) in which we are instructed to remember that Christ died for our sins…. One perfect and complete sacrifice for the sins of the Whole World…..

Lent in relation to Easter appears to have originated in Egypt sometime in the late 3rd or early 4th centuries A.D., but it is clearly conceptually connected to the many 40 day periods of retreat or fasting mentioned in the Old Testament/ Hebrew Bible.

One possibility is that Lent originated in a 40 day period in which the women of Israel wept for Tammuz….  This event, commemorated in one of the most enigmatic lines in the entire Hebrew Bible, is recorded in Ezekiel 8:14: “Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the LORD’S house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz.”

The author of Ezekiel refers to this sight as an “abomination” but Tammuz (Sumerian Dumuzi), was the lover of Ishtar/Inanna, the “Adonis” of the Fertile Crescent, who died each year and was reborn…. It is hard to know just how “deep” into the Cult of the Sacred Marriage of Inanna and Dumuzi the women of Israel described by Ezekiel might have been.  The “ordinary” priestesses of Inanna were in fact Temple “prostitutes”, a topic of greatest interest to modern scholarship, as well as to the Greek Historian Herodotus in describing the farthest “West” of the Near Eastern Temples ever recorded, found in Cypress.  The Sumerian word Dumu from which Dumuzi is derived may have meant something about the regenerative vegetative turgidity—Dumu—the sap which flows in the reeds that grow beside the life-giving Euphrates.  (The sap in the reeds gives rise to another farther flung comparison—of the Mesoamerican Tollan and the exile of “le Roi Ivre” (the Drunken King) aka the God Quetzalcoatl from the “Land of Reeds” after sexually incestuous indiscretion with the God’s sister were punished by rival deity Tezcatlipoca… but that is another essay for another day).  The Bible contains more evidence of Temple prostitution associated with either of the Goddesses Asherah or Astarte in Ancient Israel, mainly Asherah (Dumezilian Third Function Goddess whose name means, alternatively “Wealth” or “Poles”—as in wooden poles, not residents of that certain flatland country east of the Oder-Niese line, north of Czechoslovakia, and West of Belarus (Byelorussia).  The word “qedeshah” (“consecrated harlot”) occurs in Genesis 38: 21-22, Deuteronomy 23:18, and Hosea 4:14.  While Ahab’s Queen Jezebel, then, was no prostitute herself, insofar as the Bible reveals, her devotion to the goddess Asherah could possibly have made her the “madam” of many consecrated prostitutes, as the word qedeshah (root Q-D-S) is etymologically parsed and compared to Sumerian Quadishtu.

As a pause within any Lenten dissertation on high crimes, it is to be noted that in Biblical times and ever since, sexual crimes seem to be the most troublesome. The Prophet Elijah dedicated his life and prophetic works to the destruction of Jezebel and her fertility-oriented worship of Asherah.  I have never been fond of Elijah—his very name is an argument “El is [the same as] Yahweh”, but I think his attack on Hebrew polytheism is at least as strange and incongruous, perhaps even moreso, than Akhenaten’s attack on Egyptian Polytheism as much as 600-800 years earlier.

The truth is that nothing binds human beings together more tightly than their interest in/obsession with sex.  Today, the most heinous crimes are sexual crimes—there is no register of released killers, bankrobbers, or fraudulent tortfeasors identifying which released ex-cons live in which neighborhoods, but by Federal Law, sex offenders must be registered everywhere.   Convicted sex-offenders are stained with their stigmata for life, worse even than Jews in Nazi Germany (or the real or imagined Nazi-sympathizers in post-WWII France or other occupied countries).

Prostitution is, one supposes, the complete and total negation of traditional family life and marriage—yet if dedicated by and to the Priestesses of Inanna or Ishtar it was called “Sacred” among the Sumerians, Akkadians, Old through Neo-Babylonians, Assyrians, Kassites, Eblaites, Cannanites, and Cypriots of the Ancient Fertile Crescent.

I myself have often confronted the question: what is the difference between modern marriage and prostitution, and have concluded that the primary difference is in time of payment: prostitutes are paid “up front” while wives are paid (through the divorce and alimony system) post-facto, even (especially) if and when they enjoyed the full fruits of married life with their husbands.  Wives in a modern “Brave New World” Divorce of the type that Kathy Ann Garcia-Lawson has so completely eschewed, can typically collect much more for their sexual and child bearing services than even the most highly paid prostitutes ever stand to earn.  I suppose that is why the condescending Pharisees and Sadducees of our time (like Jesus’) called women who belong to the profession of which Mary Madeleine might have been a member, “Cheap”.  Yet Mary Madeleine, at the end of this Lenten Drama, is remembered as she who was the first to see the empty tomb and be greeted by the Risen Christ.  So who’s life and work was more precious to the Lord?

Prostitution and marriage—categorical opposites or merely points along a single continuum.  Which lifestyle represents greater freedom?  Which lifestyle represents greater honesty?  In Lent, when we reflect on our sins, mortal and venal, should we not reflect on such questions.

Are we today free from the hypocritical values which cast some as saints and some as sinners for very similar behaviors?

But leaving for a moment sex, lies and videotape, and returning to murder vs. lies, we go back to the foundation of modern Anthropology.  In The Golden Bough, published originally in 1890, but published in its more famous 12 volume 3rd edition contemporaneously with the Great European War, 1915-1918, Sir James G. Frazer focused on one single interrelated web of questions and problems relating to human religion worldwide: why is ritual murder or human sacrifice so common and why does it always focus on a dying King—a dying young man at the height of his masculine strength and life.

Dumuzi-Tammuz in Mesopotamia and Syro-Palestine (and Cyprus), the lover of Inanna-Ishtar; the model couple for the Sacred Marriage Rite of Ancient Sumer-Akkad-Babylon.  Osiris in Egypt, brother and lover of Isis, the model for Pharaonic resurrection and ultimately for all Egyptian resurrection (through the rites of mummification). Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, begotten of his Father before all worlds, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, who for us and our Salvation came down from heaven, was made incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, and made man.

Clive Staples Lewis once wrote an inquiry into the question of whether Jesus was “just another corn God” and concluded that he was not.  But the manifestations and apparent roots of Kingship and Sacrifice stretch from sub-Saharan Africa across Europe and Asia to the Americas.  The story of Quetzalcoatl-Kukulcan on the one hand, and the ritual sacrifice and corn-bread communion of Tezcatlipoca among the Aztec, certainly looks suspiciously like the rites of Christendom.  The early Spanish Conquistadors noted, as did their accompanying clergy, mostly “Franciscans” including but not limited to those who founded Santa Fe and the church here which ultimately evolved into the Cathedral of St. Francis, that the Aztec especially but to a lesser degree the Maya showed ritual parallels to all of the Seven Sacraments in their autochthonous theology, aboriginal ceremonies and indigenous beliefs.   For Sir James G. Frazer, as for Frays Bernaldino de Sahagun and Bartolome de las Casas, Aztec Religion was the nearest ritual approximate to Christianity outside of the Christian world itself.

What does this kind of similarity mean?  On Good Friday we “celebrate” the death of the Son of God.  In the rites of Toxcatl, the Aztec of Mexico celebrated the death of the human incarnation of Tezcatlipoca by human sacrifice.  Among the “Penitentes” of New Mexico, it was long rumored that actual human sacrifices took place on Good Friday to commemorate the original death.  The lines between cultures and religious ideology grows slim indeed.

For the Spanish, the Aztec Religion was a deceptive mockery of Christianity, going back to our original question of whether murder or deception is the highest crime known to Man.  For their sins of heresy and failure to adopt or comprehend Christianity, the Native American peoples were alternatively enslaved, burned at the stake, slaughtered in brutal war, or simply denied the right to serve as priests (despite decades of work, in the sixteenth century, of the bilingual Nahuatl & Spanish Colegio de Tlatelolco established by Sahagun) because they were doctrinally deemed to be soulless creatures easily deceived by the Devil and incapable of understanding or implementing the one “True” Christian faith.

So notions of fraud and murder converge in Christianity specifically, in world religions generally, and throughout the study of Divine Kingship, by Sir James G. Frazer and his followers, who constitute the core of Anglophone Anthropology from E.E. Evans-Pritchardt, A.R. Radcliffe-Brown, and Alfred M. Hocart, of an older generation, to Marshall Sahlins, Valerio Valeri, and Gillian Feeley-Harnik of the more recent and modern era.

Is murder truth or deception?  Joss Whedon is one of the most talented writers ever to approach television, and has put many amazing words into the mouths of his characters in several different series.  In the fourth season of Whedon’s series Angel, the eponymous character’s son, a human offspring of vampire parents (Angel and Darla) named “Connor”, tells his father,  “There’s only one thing that ever changes anything and that’s death. Everything else is a lie. You can’t be saved by a lie. You can’t be saved at all.”  (Episode 4.22 “Home”)

This pretty much sums up the Wagnerian-Schopenhauerian-Nietzschean dilemma: DEATH IS THE ONLY THING THAT EVER CHANGES ANYTHING.  Is everything else really a lie though?  Can we be saved by the death of Divine Kings?  Tezcatlipoca in the rites of Toxcatl? Dumuzi-Tammuz?  Osiris?  One-Eyed Wotan’s self-willed immolation in Walhalla at the Twilight of the Gods after the Murder of his grandson Siegfried by the treacherous half-breed Hagen?  or Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews?

Deception and Murder, from an Anthropological perspective, are fairly unique aspects of the human condition.  Male animals kill each other over mates.  Animals compete for food.  Animals know the law of the jungle: kill to eat, or to prevent oneself from being eaten.  But most animals do not set elaborate mechanical traps (that’s why a Spider’s web is so intriguing and powerful a symbol to the human mind) or drive entire herds over cliffs merely to eat and skin a few of the animals who die in the stampede (Native American Archaeological Kill sites are common from New Mexico to Alberta and elsewhere in the Americas, with prehistoric documentation going back at least to Torralba-Ambrona in the late Acheulean, Lower Palaeolithic, of Spain), but such behavior is routine among humans.  We do not think of this, perhaps, so routinely as “deception” because we do not imagine that the animals would understand the fraud if it were explained to them: “if you step on this spot, you will be caught in a trap and eaten; if you stampede over a cliff with the rest of the herd, while being chased by humans, you will all die but only a few of you will be eaten and the rest will simply rot.”  So death can be the result of deception—death can be the result of lies, even though, as  Connor believes, there is something satisfyingly clear and absolute about death that makes it “truer than life,” perhaps.

Propaganda (Advertising) and Technologically Advanced Warfare write deception and murder large across the tableau of modern history.  As Winston Churchill once observed, man is the only creature who periodically goes out to slaughter large numbers of individuals of the same species, and the invitation, the incentive to such officially sanctioned, corporate, mass murder is what we call political or….other kinds of….propaganda or advertising.  Only a few well-selected deceptive words like “weapons of mass destruction” are all it takes to rally the American population to warfare, it seems.  Yet there have been schools of thought in the not so distant past which believed and argued that truth and the maximum expression of human nobility resided in warfare, like death itself, or murder.

One of the principal reasons I have chosen to be a civil rights activist is that I have seen American Judges (both State and Federal), supposedly the ultimate arbiters of “truth” in society, so corruptly twist the truth or even the facts as presented to them, that I have little or no lingering confidence in the judicial system, anywhere, as a means of ascertaining the truth.  Quite the opposite: in mortgage finance, family, domestic relations, & “child welfare” law, the government (including the judges) more often than not come down on the side of the liars and the corrupt, and against those trying to ferret out the truth.  Doctrines such as “parental alienation” and “best interests of the child” combine to give judges and social welfare workers the power to wreak such havoc on home and family life that, frankly, it is amazing today that any traces of home or family life exist in America today.   What is the truth we are fighting for here?  I think that the real, not-so-hidden agenda behind the iron curtail of Family Law and Domestic Relations in the United States, coupled with the mortgage finance/credit-based monetary system, consists of one single goal: the abolition of the family and private property in America and the rest of the developed world, thereby realizing two of Karl Marx’s key dreams articulated in the Communist Manifesto of 1848, or in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World nightmare of 1931.

*My son Charlie, a Freshman at St. John’s College in Annapolis, regularly tortures me with impossible philosophical questions about classification, perception, and reality and all I can say is: Good for Him! I wish I had had that kind of training, but I am deficient at the dissection of philosophical questions.  His perception and understanding of Aristotle, Parmenides, Plato, and Socrates already far exceeds my own.  As my late aunt Mildred would have said, “he is well-schooled and so acquainted with all the Gone Greeks.”  St. John’s curriculum is apparently as amazing and true to the mediaeval and renaissance traditions as I had always heard—and as difficult.

Judicial Sanctions violate the Constitution, as does Judicial Immunity for Violation of Fundamental Rights

On Tuesday, October 13, 2009, Judge Clay D. Land imposed Rule 11 Sanctions in the amount of $20,000.00 on Dr. Orly Taitz.

To put it all in perspective, keep in mind that sanctions are very common in modern litigation. Sanctions in amounts comparable to those imposed on Orly are routinely imposed for failure to cooperate in discovery, for delaying the dates of trial or depositions, and “fee-shift” on the British model (”Looser pays attorneys’ fees”) has gotten more and more “popular” as means of “locking the courthouse door” to all but a few who can, basically “take their lumps as they come.”   Kathy Ann Garcia-Lawson, a close friend of mine in Florida, was sanctioned $15,000.00 a couple of years ago in the Palm Beach County 15th Judicial Circuit for “Dragging her Feet” in divorce proceedings.  Ridiculous impositions such as this amount to little more than Judicially order expropriation designed to close the courthouse doors on all but the richest litigants.

I would say that in essence, it was something of an honor for Orly to have been sanctioned in this manner and I frankly hope that she realizes that the government does not bother to injure harmless people who pose no threat to the established order.

What’s unusual about Land’s sanctions entered against Orly is that they are purely punitive rather than compensatory (no “fee shifting” involved here), and that the conduct for which Orly is being punished is purely “content-related” rather than having to do with actual violations of well-known or established court rules. Judge Land’s biggest points are that Orly’s suits on behalf of officers seeking to question their chain of command were completely frivolous from the beginning (basically because Officers should serve unquestioningly, despite their oath to uphold the Constitution), Orly’s suits were completely political from the beginning, filed to advance her own “political agenda.”

In this context, it is obvious that Judge Land’s purpose is political. That political aspect of Judge Land’s order almost smells of “bribery” at the end of his 43 page order when JUDGE LAND OFFERS THE ENTIRE $20,000.00 SANCTION AGAINST ORLY, IF COLLECTED, TO THE NATIONAL INFANTRY FOUNDATION, A PRIVATE ORGANIZATION OF ARMY VETERANS. If this is not an example of a Judge trying to make political hay off a potentially controversial ruling, I have no idea what is. Judge Land’s expression of purpose is an overture to the Army, in essence, to say, “Support me and do not question your President—every time an attorney loses YOUR right to Freedom of Speech and the right to Petition in MY Court, there will be a compensatory contribution to the memory and honor of those who served without questioning, so SHUT UP!” That’s how I read it, anyhow.

Orly now needs to prepare for appeal, which will involve, for example, filing for a stay of execution of judgment against her. She is apprehensive that Judge Land will just sanction her an addition $10,000 or more for every subsequent filing. I can only say: this raging bull is out of his pen—let him do as much damage as he can, because the imbalance in his red-eyes and flaming nostrils will become more apparent to everyone, the worse he does. In other words, I think the wilder Judge Land’s behavior at this stage, the better are Orly’s chances on appeal, although the imposition of sanctions is typically reviewed only for “abuse of discretion” and “a judge’s lawful discretion” includes just about everything except murder with malice aforethought IN the Courtroom.

The Gospel of Matthew tells us, “Blessed are they who suffer persecution for the sake of Righteousness” and later that the people of God are “sheep sent out among wolves.” Psalm 69 reminds us how long is the history of unjust persecution the innocent, and of the particularly vindictive punishment inflicted on those who try to avoid or even fight the ways of evil. So do Isaiah 59 and dozens of other passages of Holy Scripture.
Orly is an innocent but righteous victim here, but we need to realize that the flaws are systemic, and are attributable in part to doctrines such as “judicial immunity”, whereby an “Unjust Judge” can punish a repetitive filer by violating her First Amendment Right to Petition rather than finally awarding her justice (cf. Luke 18: 1-8).

Many unjust judges have used Rule 11 with increasing frequency to lock the courthouse doors to all injured parties. Conservatives are certainly at fault for supporting “Tort Reform” and lacking sympathy for the injured and abused in society. “Tort Reform” is one of the engines behind the increasing use of sanctions to throw parties and their attorneys’ out of the system.

Liberals are at still greater fault, I think, for scorning the idealism of the Founding Fathers, for despising individual autonomy and initiative, and generally for creating interest-based “safe zones” where privileged minorities can wreak havoc on the rest of society, and thereby subvert true democracy.

The Constitution was our hope (and the hope of the whole world) in ages past. If it is to be our hope in years to come, we desperately need to curtail judicial immunity where constitutional rights, especially the right to petition, are involved, so that judges can feel at least some of the sting which they can now inflict on others, at no cost to themselves.

In my own experience, I was sanctioned $150,000.00 by Judge Walter S. Smith of Waco for the dastardly crime of “spearheading a movement to have the Texas Family Code declared unconstitutional.” What was curious about the sanctions imposed on me is that I was neither a party nor a witness in the lawsuit wherein I was sanctioned. If a truckdriver veers off course and takes out a house, when his 18 wheeler crashes into it, he will be fired, license suspended, and may well do some jail time, especially if people were injured inside the house. When a Judge veers off course and imposes sanctions on a person who was neither a party nor a witness nor ever summoned or subpoenaed in a case, that party has no right of appeal (unless he intervenes) and no easy way of collateral attack. Judges have too much power. Judges can violate the Constitution continually and suffer no adverse consequences.

And so, Judges occupy a uniquely powerful position in society, and all Freedom-Loving Americans should work for judicial reform and stripping away the—not merely unconstitutional but anticonstitutional privileges–not only of judges, but of the conformist lawyers under whose protection judges aggrandize ever greater power to themselves, at the expense of the people.

Orly Taitz is the antithesis of a conformist lawyer, and it is for that reason that she is being sanctioned, why she is now being made a prey—precisely because she has turned away from evil, as in Isaiah 59: 14-15:

So justice is driven back,
and righteousness stands at a distance;
truth has stumbled in the streets,
honesty cannot enter.

Truth is nowhere to be found,
and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey.

In Cohens v. Virginia, decided by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1821, Chief Justice Marshall wrote that for a court to refuse to exercise its jurisdiction was “treason” to the constitution.

Judge Land has built his entire assault against Orly’s integrity based on the doctrine of abstention—that he has jurisdiction which he should ignore. The 5th Circuit Mindes case from 1971 specifically found constitutional questions regarding the military and the application of its rules were subject to Judicial challenge, yet Judge Land ignores the substance of the very precedent he cites. (Note: the 11th Circuit in Atlanta branched off from the 5th Circuit in New Orleans in 1981, but all earlier 5th Circuit precedent remained as the foundation of 11th Circuit Law, and the 11th and 5th Circuits, crossing Dixie, still share a great deal of, mostly rather repressive, jurisprudence in common).

Judge Land issued a 43 page order condemning Orly, for among other things, utilizing the Courts for political purposes, and yet he proposes to use the $20,000.00 he expects to obtain from Orly for what can only be called a political contribution to advance certain political positions and philosophical assertions within the army.

Judge Land is clearly utilizing his power under Rule 11 to attempt to sanction Orly for legitimate exercise of her First Amendment Right to Petition, and that of her clients. Post-judgment motions and an appeal will be filed.  Anyone who knows Orly’s determination knows that.

I have been concerned about the question of Judicial Immunity, and the perverting effect this has on judicial decisionmaking and power, for many years.  I believe and submit that the 1996 Amendments to 42 U.S.C. Sections 1983 and 1988 set the standard of review of judicial conduct as “clearly in excess of jurisdiction.”  This means that, under Federal Civil Rights substantive law (Sections 1983 & 1988 are normally considered merely formal or procedural, but the 1996 amendments were substantive, and 1988(a) is clearly substantive), a Judge can be held liable, at least for costs of litigation and attorneys fees, where his conduct was “clearly in excess of jurisdiction.”  The Senate Report at 1996 USCCAN 4216-7 clearly confirms that this standard is applicable to Federal as well as State Court Judges.

Maybe next year, if the dollar goes into tripled-digit hyperinflation (e.g. like Zimbabwe today, Argentina in the 1980s, Germany in the 1920s, they’ll make Obama the first man in history to receive two Nobel Prizes in consecutive years by giving him the Nobel Prize in Economics….

It does seem strangely bizarre that Obama’s own supporters on the Democratic left (such as Salon.com’s editor in chief Joan Walsh) are struggling to defend Obama’s receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize while apologizing “even as we acknowledge disappointment with Obama on State Secrets, Torture, Iraq, and Afghanistan” (you know, minor issues relating to world peace like those which constitute, well….just about everything he’s touched in the past nine months, see http://www.salon.com/opinion/walsh// for October 10, 2009), the rest of the Country is reeling from the sensation that this is all just a really bad joke, including my favorite commentator on civil rights and civil liberties, the author of How would a Patriot Act?.  The key quote from the article below is, in my opinion:

[Obama has] worked tirelessly to protect his country not only from accountability — but also transparency — for the last eight years of war crimes, almost certainly violating America’s treaty obligations in the process.  And he is currently presiding over an expansion of the legal black hole at Bagram while aggressively demanding the right to abduct people from around the world, ship them there, and then imprison them indefinitely with no rights of any kind.

All put together it makes me want to cry for my beloved but hopelessly insecure homeland, the United States of America, home of the zombie-like sleepwalkers and cowards who are letting this all happen (i.e., what seems like at least 75% of the population and maybe more)!  But seriously, what Obama is doing on the foreign front to protect the Bush legacy is nowhere nearly as sinister and corrupt as what he’s doing at home—pushing his domestic socialist agenda in cooperation with the corporate-financial giants, i.e. the international Banks, such as Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Chase just to name the top-three leading culprits, whose disregard for the fundamental elements of common law contract and property law is rapidly turning this country into a nation of homeless vagabonds….one foreclosure at a time, 70 foreclosures per morning and afternoon per session per county court, all across the United States, from sea to shining sea!

Glenn Greenwald

FRIDAY OCT. 9, 2009 07:10 EDT

(updated below – Update II)

When I saw this morning’s top New York Times headline — “Barack Obama Wins Nobel Peace Prize” — I had the same immediate reaction which I’m certain many others had:  this was some kind of bizarre Onion gag that got accidentally transposed onto the wrong website, that it was just some sort of strange joke someone was playing.  Upon further reflection, that isn’t all that far from the reaction I still have.  And I say that despite my belief that — as critical as I’ve been of the Obama presidency regarding civil liberties and Terrorism — foreign affairs is actually one area where he’s shown genuine potential for some constructive “change” and has, on occasion, merited real praise for taking steps in the general “peace” direction which this Prize is meant to honor.

Obama has changed the tone America uses to speak to the world generally and the Muslim world specifically.  His speech in Cairo, his first-week interview on al-Arabiya, and the extraordinarily conciliatory holiday video he sent to Iran are all substantial illustrations of that.  His willingness to sit down and negotiate with Iran — rather than threaten and berate them — has already produced tangible results.  He has at least preliminarily broken from Bush’s full-scale subservience to Israel and has applied steadfast pressure on the Israelis to cease settlement activities, even though it’s subjected him to the sorts of domestic political risks and vicious smears that have made prior Presidents afraid to do so.  His decision to use his first full day in office to issue Executive Orders to close Guantanamo, ostensibly ban torture, and bar CIA black sites was an important symbol offered to the world (even though it’s been followed by actions that make those commitments little more than empty symbols).  He refused to reflexively support the right-wing, civil-liberty-crushing coup leaders in Honduras merely because they were “pro-American” and “anti-Chavez,” thus siding with the vast bulk of Latin America’s governments — a move George Bush, or John McCain, never would have made.  And as a result of all of that, the U.S. — in a worldwide survey released just this week — rose from seventh to first on the list of “most admired countries.”

All that said, these changes are completely preliminary, which is to be expected given that he’s only been in office nine months.  For that reason, while Obama’s popularity has surged in Western Europe, the changes in the Muslim world in terms of how the U.S. is perceived have been small to nonexistent.  As Der Spiegel put it in the wake of a worldwide survey in July:  “while Europe’s ardor for Obama appears fervent, he has actually made little progress in the regions where the US faces its biggest foreign policy problems.”  People who live in regions that have long been devastated by American weaponry don’t have the luxury of being dazzled by pretty words and speeches.  They apparently — and rationally — won’t believe that America will actually change from a war-making nation into a peace-making one until there are tangible signs that this is happening.  It’s because that has so plainly not yet occurred that the Nobel Committee has made a mockery out of their own award.

But far more important than the lack of actual accomplishments are some of the policies over which Obama has presided that are the very opposite of peace.  Already this year, he not only escalated the American war in Afghanistan, but has ordered air raids that have produced things like this:

That was from a May airstrike in which over 100 Afghan civilians were killed by American jets — one of many similar incidents this year, including one only a week ago that killed 9 Afghan civilians.  How can someone responsible for that, and who has only escalated that war, possibly be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in the very same year that he did that?  Does that picture above look like the work of a Nobel Peace laureate?  Does this, from the May airstrike?

Beyond Afghanistan, Obama continues to preside over another war — in Iraq:  remember that? — where no meaningful withdrawal has occurred.  He uttered not a peep of opposition to the Israeli massacre of Gazan civilians at the beginning of this year (using American weapons), one which a U.N. investigator just found constituted war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity.  The changed tone to Iran notwithstanding, his administration frequently emphasizes that it is preserving the option to bomb that country, too — which could be a third war against a Muslim country fought simultaneously under his watch.  He’s worked tirelessly to protect his country not only from accountability — but also transparency — for the last eight years of war crimes, almost certainly violating America’s treaty obligations in the process.  And he is currently presiding over an expansion of the legal black hole at Bagram while aggressively demanding the right to abduct people from around the world, ship them there, and then imprison them indefinitely with no rights of any kind.

It’s certainly true that Obama inherited, not started, these conflicts.  And it’s possible that he could bring about their end, along with an overall change in how America interacts with the world in terms of actions, not just words.  If he does that, he would deserve immense credit — perhaps even a Nobel Peace Prize.  But he hasn’t done any of that.  And it’s at least as possible that he’ll do the opposite:  that he’ll continue to escalate the 8-year occupation of Afghanistan, preside over more conflict in Iraq, end up in a dangerous confrontation with Iran, and continue to preserve many of the core Bush/Cheney Terrorism policies that created such a stain on America’s image and character around the world.

Through no fault of his own, Obama presides over a massive war-making state that spends on its military close to what the rest of the world spends combined.  The U.S. accounts for almost 70% of worldwide arms sales.  We’re currently occupying and waging wars in two separate Muslim countries and making clear we reserve the “right” to attack a third.  Someone who made meaningful changes to those realities would truly be a man of peace.  It’s unreasonable to expect that Obama would magically transform all of this in nine months, and he certainly hasn’t.  Instead, he presides over it and is continuing much of it.  One can reasonably debate how much blame he merits for all of that, but there are simply no meaningful “peace” accomplishment in his record — at least not yet — and there’s plenty of the opposite.  That’s what makes this Prize so painfully and self-evidently ludicrous.

UPDATE:  Remember how, during the Bush years, the GOP would disgustingly try to equate liberals with Terrorists by pointing out that they happened to have the same view on a particular matter (The Left opposes the war in Iraq, just like Al Qaeda and Hezbollah do! or bin Laden’s criticisms of Bush sound just like Michael Moore’s! ).  It looks like the Democratic Party haslearned and adopted that tactic perfectly (“‘The Republican Party has thrown in its lot with the terrorists – the Taliban and Hamas this morning – in criticizing the President for receiving the Nobel Peace prize,’ DNC communications director Brad Woodhouse told POLITICO”; Republicans are “put[ting] politics above patriotism,” he added).

Apparently, according to the DNC, if you criticize this Prize, then you’re an unpatriotic America-hater — just like the Terrorists, because they’re also criticizing the award.  Karl Rove should be proud.  Maybe the DNC should also send out Joe Lieberman’s 2005 warning that “in matters of war we undermine Presidential credibility at our nation’s peril.”  Hamas also thinks that Israeli settlements should be frozen — a position Obama shares.  So, by the DNC’s Rovian reasoning, doesn’t this mean that Obama “has thrown in his lot with the terrorists”?

UPDATE II:  On Democracy Now, Naomi Klein calls Obama’s award “disappointing, cheapening of the Nobel Prize,” and adds:  “I think it’s quite insulting. I don’t know what kind of political game they’re playing, but I don’t think that the committee has ever been as political as this or as delusional as this, frankly.”  On Daily Kos, Michael Moore writes ironically:  “Congratulations President Obama on the Nobel Peace Prize — Now Please Earn it!”  Mairead Maguire, the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, says she’s “very disappointed” with this award, noting:  “President Obama has yet to prove that he will move seriously on the Middle East, that he will end the war in Afghanistan and many other issues.”   And my Salon colleague, Alex Koppelman, adds several thoughts about the efforts by the DNC and some Democratic groups to explicitly equate opposition to the Prize with “casting one’s lot with terrorists.”

Predatory Lending

Bankrupt Washington Mutual now owned by JP Morgan does not get much press about their prior predatory lending practices.  This story in the NY Times ‘Going Begging’ illustrates a few things.  One is that even when properties go on the auction block they are not often getting sold.  The second and most important it how did a loan this large with a second done by the now infamous predatory lender Wells Fargo get done?  The reporter JOSH BARBANEL at the NY Times seems to pick on a few of the oddities of banks lending practice but fails to ask the real question brought up at the end, how and why did this loan ever get done in the first place?  Not to put all the blame on the reporter because this seems to be the norm in America right now.  Reading a story like this almost always seems to put the blame on the borrower, with little or no responsibility by the lenders.  Pretender lenders who just gave out loans to increase their bottom lines, knowing full well that in the end the loan would not be paid and they would again increase their coffers (or is that our home coffins?) when the home was taken in foreclosure and auctioned off?  If you think all is lost keep reading this site and other site like Neil Garfield’s Living Lies. The truth is being told here and there that you can fight and keep your home from the deceptive pretender lenders.

Call to Arms: Wells Fargo Class Action possible on Mortgage Servicing/Holder-in-Due Course Fraud, Securitization issues?

FEDERAL CASE AGAINST WELLS FARGO

Currently I am the sole Plaintiff in a lawsuit against Wells Fargo in US District Court in Boise Idaho. The suit, like many of the others I write, is for Quiet Title to my property located in Caldwell Idaho. My assistant, Peyton Freiman, took it to the Court for filing in September along with an Application for Temporary Restraining Order, regarding which the Court immediately ordered a three hour hearing set for October 28, 2009.  Usually the decision on whether or not to grant a TRO is made in a manner of minutes in chambers. But, on this particular occasion, given the current economic climate, distrust of banks and maybe the individual language used in my pleadings I have been given a great deal of time to make my case for injunctions against Wells Fargo as we continue onward into Discovery and finally a trial. Hopefully this is a Court that realizes the seriousness of the matter and is giving me more time as a result, not simply a scare tactic to make me have second thoughts. Either way, I plan on being as prepared as ever to argue the issues in my pleadings.

I realize that this is a great opportunity and extend the option to anyone reading this who also has a loan out with Wells Fargo to intervene and join as a co-plaintiff in this case in Idaho. It would be a great strategic advantage  to have a massive list of Plaintiffs going into this hearing to give added weight to my words and possibly gain class action certification as a result.  To obtain certification under Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, there has to be at least one claim and issue regarding which all class members have identical claims. They have gotten very strict about that recently, it seems.  So class action status as a co-plaintiff we would need to talk about what issues there are in common and whether we can make identical claims for damages, injunction, or declaratory judgment.   In other words, there’s a difference in drafting issues of a different kind here: tailored issues for class certification and designation of one representative as “typical.”  We will also have to get a lawyer representing everyone’s claims in this action.  There is nothing specific in Rule 23 that says you have to have a licensed attorney.  Rule 23(a)(4) requires that “the representative parties will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the class, while Rule 23(c)(2)(B)(iv) states that “a class member may enter an appearance through an attorney if the member desires.  Almost decision I have seen, however, requires that a class be represented by a licensed attorney and I’m not sure this is the place to try to challenge that issue, although it may be.  I’m open to discussion on that point.  The Court’s discretion to impose the requirement of a licensed attorney springs from Rule 23(d) (1)(C) “In conducting an action under this rule, the court may issue orders that….impose conditions on the representative parties or on intervenors.”

For the time being, and I’m writing this as of September 30, 2009: I issue this “Call to Arms”—Will everyone who believes they have been defrauded by Wells Fargo in regard to the servicing or modification of a mortgage note or mortgage contract signed after January 1, 2000, or who particularly believes that Wells Fargo is no longer the “holder in due course” of their note, or has otherwise acted in a manner inconsistent with “privity of contract” contact me through Robert Ponte at 860-599-5557?  It would be easier to start out with people in the Ninth Circuit: Alaska, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, and American Samoa, but we have another anchor state in Florida and still others in Massachusetts, Maryland, and Michigan where parallel actions could be filed.

I’d ask this:  I am working on the lawyer, are you, dear reader, willing to work with me?  If you want to know more I am willing to forward on the complaint, essentially the damages are “holder in due course” issues, which I talk about frequently on this blog. In short, if you think that somehow you and I don’t share the same kind of damages or allegations of material fact please think again: we are ALL being duped by big banks who have no idea where our original notes are. So, think about it and contact me if you wish,

CEL III