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Ron Cruger
The Spectator
founded 2004 by ron cruger
A place for intelligent writers
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On growing older - not dying!
Our overwhelming news glut
What happened to our heroes?
Wise up, America
The Starbucks 7 on the Presidency
A special birthday: Heading for 100
Bye Bye Big Bank
The Infatuation
Republican, Democrat or what?
The image of America
Mitt versus Barack, who wins?
It's a monumental gyp!
The do-nothing candidates
 My wise old Grandmother would have called it a “gyp.”
          It’s the giant swindle that the banks perpetrated on America and countries around the globe when they loaned money in the form of mortgages to millions of people who couldn’t afford them.
          By now, everyone knows what happened. The banks that loaned the mortgage money to these wide-eyed, unmindful and deceivable individuals and families then took these damaged mortgages, put them in bundles with other blemished mortgages and sold them to individual investors and corporations around the globe.
          Along about 2008 these individual investors and corporations began to wake up to the reality that many of the mortgages bundled together and sold to them were toxic. Millions of those spurious mortgages were phony-baloney and the bundles that they resided in were also toxic.
          In one American city alone, San Diego, nearly 50,000 homes have been foreclosed since the start of the financial crisis in 2008. This number is now growing at an alarming rate.
          Much of the fuss and attention over the mortgage crisis has been centered on the impact on Wall Street and foreign banks and lending institutions who bought these mortgage- backed securities. These are the firms that received the majority of the federal bailouts. But great harm has also been done to the homeowners. The fraud has affected them because when homes are lost to foreclosure all in the community suffer – homeowners, their families, as well as neighbors, schools, businesses and families who live in the area.
          Foreclosed homes lose a fourth of their value and then surrounding properties follow suit. There are estimates that during the past five years almost twenty billion dollars in property values have been lost in the city of San Diego alone.
          To many of these former current and former home-owners their homes were their only form of wealth. The decline in property values has caused many negative effects – retirement, education, medical care and other profound consequences. When property values decline unemployment and underemployment increase. As the municipal tax base is effected local tax revenues decline and governments cannot address their increasing needs. These challenges results in local governments being unable to provide many basic services, like fire departments, libraries, parks and police.
          Many of the problems existing today are the result of the predatory lending and other rash and shameful banking practices.
          I’ve never thought bankers were stupid folk. On the contrary, my image of them is of sharp, intelligent and shrewd men and women. I’d have to assume that their bundling of stinking, doomed and predatory mortgages along with a few proper ones was a plan all along. What I can’t figure out is that they must not have figured that they would ever get caught. The slip-up of many criminals.
          The years are passing by and the men and women who are responsible for the world-wide wreckage are still walking our streets. I’ll add another presumption to my list, that many of these bankers and banks are big-time contributors to the political process – cash awards to those who represent us in the halls of power. It will be interesting to see if any of these individuals suffer any penalties for the damage they have caused a generation of Americans.
          The impact of the actions of the bankers and banks continue to cause monumental effects on America’s mainstream. These same people who, a few years ago, were lending money to anyone who could sign their name with an “X” now are reluctant to loan money to highly qualified and trustworthy citizens.
          And yet, they walk the streets, somehow protected from suffering for the crimes they committed.
          It’s time that we learned exactly who was behind these staggering, whopping crimes.
          As Gram would say, “What a gyp!”