Great post - wish I could reprint the whole thing here but you can read it by clicking on the title link! AWESOME
Richard (RJ) Eskow: Does That Proposed Foreclosure Deal Help Main Street or Wall Street?: "We used a five-point grading process to evaluate the administration's reported proposal. We employed on simple principles of fairness and justice, along with some common-sense rules for any criminal settlement, such as: Does the punishment fit the crime? Are the victims being made whole? Will it deter future crimes?
The media's preference for euphemisms like 'faulty robo-signing' and 'erroneous paperwork' when describing bank criminality may be setting the stage for another free pass for banks. (If you think the Bonanno crime family's protection racket was 'an improperly allocated form of taxation,' you'll love their choice of words.) The mixed signals and signs of infighting in the federal government aren't encouraging either.
Neither the slanted media coverage nor the Executive branch's disorganization provides the right context for the kind of settlement that's needed -- one that includes much higher penalties and some criminal indictments.
II. Deal or no deal?
Here's the outline of the administration's proposed deal, according to most reports: Banks would have to write down the principal on underwater mortgages with $20 billion of their own money (investors in mortgage-backed securities and other financial in"