Category Archives: BUSINESS

Full-Blown Civil War Erupts On Wall Street – Financial Elite Start Turning On Each Other

By David DeGraw – ampedstatus.org

Finally, after trillions in fraudulent activity, trillions in bailouts, trillions in printed money, billions in political bribing and billions in bonuses, the criminal cartel members on Wall Street are beginning to get what they deserve. As the Eurozone is coming apart at the seams and as the US economy grinds to a halt, the financial elite are starting to turn on each other. The lawsuits are piling up fast. Here’s an extensive roundup:

Time to put your Big Bank shorts on! Get ready for a run… The chickens are coming home to roost… The Global Banking Cartel’s crimes are being exposed left & right… Prepare for Shock & Awe…

Well, well… here’s your Shock & Awe:

First up, this shockingly huge $196 billion lawsuit just filed against 17 major banks on behalf of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Bank of America is severely exposed in this lawsuit. As the parent company of Countrywide and Merrill Lynch they are on the hook for $57.4 billion. JP Morgan is next in the line of fire with $33 billion. And many death spiraling European banks are facing billions in losses as well.

FHA Files a $196 Billion Lawsuit Against 17 Banks

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), as conservator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises), today filed lawsuits against 17 financial institutions, certain of their officers and various unaffiliated lead underwriters. The suits allege violations of federal securities laws and common law in the sale of residential private-label mortgage-backed securities (PLS) to the Enterprises.

Complaints have been filed against the following lead defendants, in alphabetical order:

1. Ally Financial Inc. f/k/a GMAC, LLC – $6 billion
2. Bank of America Corporation – $6 billion
3. Barclays Bank PLC – $4.9 billion
4. Citigroup, Inc. – $3.5 billion
5. Countrywide Financial Corporation -$26.6 billion
6. Credit Suisse Holdings (USA), Inc. – $14.1 billion
7. Deutsche Bank AG – $14.2 billion
8. First Horizon National Corporation – $883 million
9. General Electric Company – $549 million
10. Goldman Sachs & Co. – $11.1 billion
11. HSBC North America Holdings, Inc. – $6.2 billion
12. JPMorgan Chase & Co. – $33 billion
13. Merrill Lynch & Co. / First Franklin Financial Corp. – $24.8 billion
14. Morgan Stanley – $10.6 billion
15. Nomura Holding America Inc. – $2 billion
16. The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC – $30.4 billion
17. Société Générale – $1.3 billion

These complaints were filed in federal or state court in New York or the federal court in Connecticut. The complaints seek damages and civil penalties under the Securities Act of 1933, similar in content to the complaint FHFA filed against UBS Americas, Inc. on July 27, 2011. In addition, each complaint seeks compensatory damages for negligent misrepresentation. Certain complaints also allege state securities law violations or common law fraud. [read full FHFA release]

You can read the suits filed against each individual bank here. For some more information read Bloomberg: BofA, JPMorgan Among 17 Banks Sued by U.S. for $196 Billion. Noticeably absent from the list of companies being sued is Wells Fargo.

And the suits just keep coming…

BofA sued over $1.75 billion Countrywide mortgage pool

Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) was sued by the trustee of a $1.75 billion mortgage pool, which seeks to force the bank to buy back the underlying loans because of alleged misrepresentations in how they were made. The lawsuit by the banking unit of US Bancorp (USB.N) is the latest of a number of suits seeking to recover investor losses tied to risky mortgage loans issued by Countrywide Financial Corp, which Bank of America bought in 2008. In a complaint filed in a New York state court in Manhattan, U.S. Bank said Countrywide, which issued the 4,484 loans in the HarborView Mortgage Loan Trust 2005-10, materially breached its obligations by systemically misrepresenting the quality of its underwriting and loan documentation. [read more]

Bank of America kept AIG legal threat under wraps

Top Bank of America Corp lawyers knew as early as January that American International Group Inc was prepared to sue the bank for more than $10 billion, seven months before the lawsuit was filed, according to sources familiar with the matter. Bank of America shares fell more than 20 percent on August 8, the day the lawsuit was filed, adding to worries about the stability of the largest U.S. bank…. The bank made no mention of the lawsuit threat in a quarterly regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission just four days earlier. Nor did management discuss it on conference calls about quarterly results and other pending legal claims. [read more]

Nevada Lawsuit Shows Bank of America’s Criminal Incompetence

As we’ve stated before, litigation by attorney general is significant not merely due to the damages and remedies sought, but because it paves the way for private lawsuits. And make no mistake about it, this filing is a doozy. It shows the Federal/state attorney general mortgage settlement effort to be a complete travesty. The claim describes, in considerable detail, how various Bank of America units engaged in misconduct in virtually every aspect of its residential mortgage business. [read more]

Nevada Wallops Bank of America With Sweeping Suit; Nationwide Foreclosure Settlement in Peril

The sweeping new suit could have repercussions far beyond Nevada’s borders. It further jeopardizes a possible nationwide settlement with the five largest U.S. banks over their foreclosure practices, especially given concerns voiced by other attorneys general, New York’s foremost among them…. In a statement, Bank of America spokeswoman Jumana Bauwens said reaching a settlement would bring a better outcome for homeowners than litigation. “We believe that the best way to get the housing market going again in every state is a global settlement that addresses these issues fairly, comprehensively and with finality. [read more]

FDIC Objects to Bank of America’s $8.5 Billion Mortgage-Bond Accord

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is objecting to Bank of America Corp. (BAC)’s proposed $8.5 billion mortgage-bond settlement with investors, joining investors and states that are challenging the agreement. The FDIC owns securities covered by the settlement and said it doesn’t have enough information to evaluate the accord, according to a filing today in federal court in Manhattan. Bank of America has agreed to pay $8.5 billion to resolve claims from investors in Countrywide Financial mortgage bonds. The settlement was negotiated with a group of institutional investors and would apply to investors outside that group. [read more]

Fed asks Bank of America to list contingency plan: report

The Federal Reserve has asked Bank of America Corp to show what measures it could take if business conditions worsen, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with the situation. BofA executives recently responded to the unusual request from the Federal Reserve with a list of options that includes the issuance of a separate class of shares tied to the performance of its Merrill Lynch securities unit, the people told the paper. Bank of America and the Fed declined to comment to the Journal. Both could not immediately be reached for comment by Reuters outside regular U.S. business hours. [
read more]

Bombshell Admission of Failed Securitization Process in American Home Mortgage Servicing/LPS Lawsuit

Wow, Jones Day just created a huge mess for its client and banks generally if anyone is alert enough to act on it. The lawsuit in question is American Home Mortgage Servicing Inc. v Lender Processing Services. It hasn’t gotten all that much attention (unless you are on the LPS deathwatch beat) because to most, it looks like yet another beauty contest between Cinderella’s two ugly sisters. AHMSI is a servicer (the successor to Option One, and it may also still have some Ameriquest servicing).

AHMSI is mad at LPS because LPS was supposed to prepare certain types of documentation AHMSI used in foreclosures. AHMSI authorized the use of certain designated staffers signing with the authority of AHSI (what we call robosinging, since the people signing these documents didn’t have personal knowledge, which is required if any of the documents were affidavits). But it did not authorize the use of surrogate signers, which were (I kid you not) people hired to forge the signatures of robosigners. The lawsuit rather matter of factly makes a stunning admission… [read more]

Fraudclosure: MERS Case Filed With Supreme Court

Before readers get worried by virtue of the headline that the Supreme Court will use its magic legal wand to make the dubious MERS mortgage registry system viable, consider the following:

1. The Supreme Court hears only a very small portion of the cases filed with it, and is less likely to take one with these demographics (filed by a private party, and an appeal out of a state court system, as opposed to Federal court). This case, Gomes v. Countywide, was decided against the plaintiff in lower and appellate court and the California state supreme court declined to hear it

2. If MERS or the various servicers who have had foreclosures overturned based on challenges to MERS thought they’d get a sympathetic hearing at the Supreme Court, they probably would have filed some time ago. MERS have apparently been settling cases rather than pursue ones where it though the judge would issue an unfavorable precedent

3. The case in question, from what the experts I consulted with and I can tell, is not the sort the Supreme Court would intervene in based on the issue raised, which is due process (14th Amendment). But none of us have seen the underlying lower and appellate court cases, and the summaries we’ve seen are unusually unclear as to what the legal argument is. [read more]

Iowa Says State AG Accord Won’t Release Banks From Liability

The 50-state attorney general group investigating mortgage foreclosure practices won’t release banks from all civil, or any criminal, liability in a settlement, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller said. [read more]

Fed Launches New Formal Enforcement Action Against Goldman Sachs To Review Foreclosure Practices

The Federal Reserve Board has just launched a formal enforcement action against Goldman Sachs related to Litton Loan Services. Litton Loan is the nightmare-ridden mortgage servicing unit, a subsidiary of Goldman, that Goldman has been trying to sell for months. They penned a deal to recently, but the Fed stepped in and required Goldman to end robo-signing taking place at the unit before the sale could be completed. Sounds like this enforcement action is an extension of that requirement. [read more]

Goldman Sachs, Firms Agree With Regulator To End ‘Robo-Signing’ Foreclosure Practices

Goldman Sachs and two other firms have agreed with the New York banking regulator to end the practice known as robo-signing, in which bank employees signed foreclosure documents without reviewing case files as required by law, the Wall Street Journal said. In an agreement with New York’s financial-services superintendent, Goldman, its Litton Loan Servicing unit and Ocwen Financial Corp also agreed to scrutinize loan files for evidence they mishandled borrowers’ paperwork and to cut mortgage payments for some New York homeowners, the Journal said. [read more]

Banks still robo-signing, filing doubtful foreclosure documents

Reuters has found that some of the biggest U.S. banks and other “loan servicers” continue to file questionable foreclosure documents with courts and county clerks. They are using tactics that late last year triggered an outcry, multiple investigations and temporary moratoriums on foreclosures. In recent months, servicers have filed thousands of documents that appear to have been fabricated or improperly altered, or have sworn to false facts. Reuters also identified at least six “robo-signers,” individuals who in recent months have each signed thousands of mortgage assignments — legal documents which pinpoint ownership of a property. These same individuals have been identified — in depositions, court testimony or court rulings — as previously having signed vast numbers of foreclosure documents that they never read or checked. [read more]

JPMorgan fined for contravening Iran, Cuba sanctions

JPMorgan Chase Bank has been fined $88.3 million for contravening US sanctions against regimes in Iran, Cuba and Sudan, and the former Liberian government, the US Treasury Department announced Thursday. The Treasury said that the bank had engaged in a number of “egregious” financial transfers, loans and other facilities involving those countries but, in announcing a settlement with the bank, said they were “apparent” violations of various sanctions regulations. [read more]

This Is Considered Punishment? The Federal Reserve Wells Fargo Farce

What made the news surprising, of course, was that the Federal Reserve has rarely, if ever, taken action against a bank for making predatory loans. Alan Greenspan, the former Fed chairman, didn’t believe in regulation and turned a blind eye to subprime abuses. His successor, Ben Bernanke, is not the ideologue that Greenspan is, but, as an institution, the Fed prefers to coddle banks rather than punish them.

That the Fed would crack down on Wells Fargo would seem to suggest a long-overdue awakening. Yet, for anyone still hoping for justice in the wake of the financial crisis, the news was hardly encouraging. First, the Fed did not force Wells Fargo to admit guilt — and even let the company issue a press release blaming its wrongdoing on a “relatively small group.”

The $85 million fine was a joke; in just the last quarter, Wells Fargo’s revenues exceeded $20 billion. And compensating borrowers isn’t going to hurt much either. By my calculation, it won’t top $20 million. [read more]

Exclusive: Regulators seek high-frequency trading secrets

U.S. securities regulators have taken the unprecedented step of asking high-frequency trading firms to hand over the details of their trading strategies, and in some cases, their secret computer codes. The requests for proprietary code and algorithm parameters by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), a Wall Street brokerage regulator, are part of investigations into suspicious market activity, said Tom Gira, executive vice president of FINRA’s market regulation unit. [read more]

And here’s part of the Collapse Roundup I wrote on August 25th, referenced in the beginning of this report – as you will see, I would probably make a lot more money as an investment adviser:

Collapse Roundup #5: Goliath On The Ropes, Big Banks Getting Hit Hard, It’s A “Bloodbath” As Wall Street’s Crimes Blow Up In Their Face

Time to put your Big Bank shorts on! Get ready for a run…

The chickens are coming home to roost. Reality is catching up with the market riggers (Fed, ECB, PPT, CIA) and the “too big to fail” banks are getting whacked. Trillions of dollars in bailouts and legalized (FASB) accounting fraud cannot save these insolvent zombie banks any longer. The Grim Reaper is on the horizon and his sickle will do what paid off politicians won’t, cut ‘em down to size. So get your silver stake ready, time to plunge it into their vampire squid hearts….

What about Warren Buffet? He saved Goldman Sachs with a bailout in 2008. Can he save Bank of America?…

Warren’s bailout will help BofA over the short run, but $5 billion is just a drop in the bucket when it comes to their problems. The only thing his $5 billion will accomplish is a temporary run up in stock value so everyone who has been killed on the plummeting stock price can then jump out without complete loss….

Trouble a-comin’…

Goldman Sachs TANKS After CEO Lloyd Blankfein Hires Famous Defense Lawyer

Is the Goldman Sachs CEO facing a new lawsuit?

The market seems to think so. Goldman Sachs just tanked in minutes before the close after news that Lloyd Blankfein hired a lawyer famous for defending vilified execs. It’s back up a bit since dropping over 5%, but the news is still concerning.

It’s unclear whether the lawyer is for him, Goldman Sachs, or both, but Goldman Sachs’s CEO Lloyd Blankfein hired Reid Weingarten, a high profile defense attorney who says “I’m used to these monstrously difficult cases where everybody hates my clients,” according to Reuters.

Reuters says the hire might have something to do with accusations of Blankfein’s committing perjury. Or something else:

One former federal prosecutor, who was not authorized to speak publicly, said Blankfein may have hired outside counsel after receiving a request from investigators for documents or other information. [read full report]

Speaking of hiring lawyers…

The Global Banking Cartel’s Crimes Are Being Exposed Left & Right… Blowing Up In Their Face… Prepare for Shock & Awe… BOOM!

Moody’s exposed:

MOODY’S ANALYST BREAKS SILENCE: Says Ratings Agency Rotten To Core With Conflicts

A former senior analyst at Moody’s has gone public with his story of how one of the country’s most important rating agencies is corrupted to the core.

The analyst, William J. Harrington, worked for Moody’s for 11 years, from 1999 until his resignation last year.

From 2006 to 2010, Harrington was a Senior Vice President in the derivative products group, which was responsible for producing many of the disastrous ratings Moody’s issued during the housing bubble.

Harrington has made his story public in the form of a 78-page “comment” to the SEC’s proposed rules about rating agency reform….

Here are some key points:

* Moody’s ratings often do not reflect its analysts’ private conclusions. Instead, rating committees privately conclude that certain securities deserve certain ratings–but then vote with management to give the securities the higher ratings that issuer clients want.

* Moody’s management and “compliance” officers do everything possible to make issuer clients happy–and they view analysts who do not do the same as “troublesome.” Management employs a variety of tactics to transform these troublesome analysts into “pliant corporate citizens” who have Moody’s best interests at heart.

* Moody’s product managers participate in–and vote on–ratings decisions. These product managers are the same people who are directly responsible for keeping clients happy and growing Moody’s business.

* At least one senior executive lied under oath at the hearings into rating agency conduct. Another executive, who Harrington says exemplified management’s emphasis on giving issuers what they wanted, skipped the hearings altogether. [read full report]

Oil executive threatens Obama over Keystone XL

Published: 06 January, 2012, 02:48

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images / AFP

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images / AFP

TAGS: ObamaPoliticsLawUSANorth America

 

The largest energy firm in America is attacking President Obama, insisting that the White House’s refusal to cooperate with the Keystone XL pipeline will cause the commander-in-chief to suffer in the 2012 election.

The proposed pipeline would stretch roughly 1,700 miles into America out of the Canadian oil sands to the north and across a massive span of the US. Although backers insist that the effort would bring thousands of jobs and add to America’s reserve of natural resources, activists opposed to the plan have been largely agitated over the detrimental toll the pipeline would cause for the country’s environment.

Facing increased opposition, including but not limited to a series of sit-ins and protests outside his own front door, President Obama delayed offering a decision on a permit that would have let the pipeline start immediately. Instead, said the president, it won’t be until 2013 when the White House will officially give Keystone the thumbs up or thumbs down on the project.

The American Petroleum Institute, the largest oil and gas lobbying group in the country, says that could be a problem for the president.

“This issue is very simple and straightforward, it’s about jobs and national security,” API President Jack Gerard told reporters in a speech this week.

“Anything less than approval or acquiescence in allowing the pipeline to go forward would be inconsistent with the vast majority of Americans,” he added, and insisted that the failure to comply with the API and allegedly the American public would be a bad decision for the Obama administration.

“After waiting more than three years for this pipeline while the country faces prolonged unemployment, the American people are fed up with the president’s inaction on a project that can quickly create jobs,” Fred Upton, chairman of the Energy and Commerce committee, added in a statement of his own.

On the contrary, a recent Pew poll found that 71 percent of Americans think “This country should do whatever it takes to protect the environment.” Barely a quarter of those polled by Pew said they favored expanding exploration and production of fossil fuels.

The impact the API could have on Washington is nothing worth shrugging at. In 2011 alone, the group lobbied to the tune of nearly $6 million on Capitol Hill. At the same time, however, the API has made it abundantly clear that an Obama White House in 2013 is something they aren’t all that keen on. At the dawn of the election cycle, the API sponsored the New Hampshire Energy Freedom Family Festival in New Hampshire, an event attended by around 350 people that attacked the EPA and taxes on the oil industry.

Speaking at the event in support of their goals? GOP contender and Texas Governor Rick Perry.

Last February, Martin Durbin, API’s executive vice president for government affairs, told Bloomberg News that the group was looking to throw their support behind someone come 2012 — and that would be an award welcomed only to a candidate deserving of their profits made by pilfering the Earth for oil

“At the end of the day, our mission is trying to influence the policy debate,” said Durbin.

The API has previously paid for ads that attack policy issues they feel are against what the oil industry stands for, although the Obama administration, much to the API’s chagrin, continues to consider ending tax breaks for energy companies included in API.

Obama signs new Iran sanctions into law, enjoy US gas prices!

US President Barack Obama Saturday signed into law tough new sanctions targeting Iran’s central bank and financial sector, in a move that could intensify a brewing Gulf showdown.
The measures, meant to punish Iran for its nuclear program, were contained in a mammoth $662 billion defense bill, which Obama signed despite having reservations that it ties his hands on setting foreign policy.
The sanctions are meant to hit Iran’s crucial oil sector and require foreign firms to make a choice between doing business with Tehran’s financial sector and central bank or the mighty US economy and financial sector.
Foreign central banks which deal with the Iranian central bank on oil transactions could also face restrictions, sparking fears of damage to US ties with key nations such as Russia and China which trade with Iran.
Obama signed the bill in Hawaii where he is on vacation, at a time of rising tension with Tehran, which has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz — through which more than a third of the world’s tanker-borne oil passes.
The United States has warned it will “not tolerate” such an interruption.
In comments reported Saturday, Tehran’s top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili warned that Iran would “give a resounding and many-pronged response to any threat” made against it.
But Jalili also said Iran was ready to rejoin EU-led talks with major powers on assuaging Western concerns over its nuclear program.
The White House held intense negotiations with Congress on the terms of the law’s implementation, given concern that sanctions on Iran’s central bank could spark chaos in the global financial system and hike the price of oil.
Obama said in a statement issued as he signed the bill that he was concerned the measure would interfere with his constitutional authority to conduct foreign relations by tying his hands in dealings with foreign governments.
The bill, which passed with wide majorities in Congress, did reserve some wiggle room for Obama, granting him the power to grant 120-day waivers if he judges it to be in the national security interests of the United States.
Earlier this month, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner wrote to Congress to express concern against an earlier, tougher sanctions measure along the same lines saying it could harm the US push with its partners to isolate Iran.
Geithner argued that foreign allies could resent the new US measures and make it less likely they would cooperate and the sanctions would have the “opposite effect” of their intended purpose of isolating Iran.
Senior US officials said Saturday that they would try to implement the new sanctions guidelines in a way that protected the global economy and US foreign policy priorities, in a way which would still inflict pain on Iran.
There are fears that increased sanctions on Iran’s central bank could force the global price of oil to suddenly soar, and actually give Tehran a financial windfall on its existing oil sales.
Rising oil prices could also crimp the fragile economic recovery in the United States and inflict pain on American voters in gas stations — at a time when Obama is running for reelection next year.
The Obama administration argues that it has imposed the toughest-ever sanctions on Iran by the United States and its allies and says the measures are now having a punishing impact on the Iranian economy and petroleum sector.
The West alleges Tehran is seeking to acquire a weapons capability under the guise of its nuclear research program. Iran denies any such ambition and says its work is only for civil energy and medical purposes.
In recent weeks, Iranian officials have insisted the country was ready to face new sanctions against the oil sector and central bank.
The Wall Street Journal reported this month that US and European officials were seeking assurances from major oil producers, such as Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates, that they would increase exports to the West and Asian nations if tighter sanctions on Tehran’s energy exports are enforced.

Ron Paul’s message of truth speaks for itself

Published: 27 December, 2011, 22:59

Ron Paul (Reuters / Jeff Haynes)

Ron Paul (Reuters / Jeff Haynes)

TAGS: HistoryUSAGovernment Spending

An economic collapse. An end to American exceptionalism. Out all chaos and unrest. It isn’t a pretty picture, but it could be a very likely reality for the future of the United States — and Ron Paul isn’t afraid to admit it.

As the congressman from Texas takes the lead in Iowa one week before the state’s caucus is set to start, the libertarian-leaning lawmaker is warning of doom and gloom for the US if the country continues the downward spiral that is dragging almost every aspect of the American way of life. Jobs are leaving, freedoms are crumbling and the US dollar is quickly becoming worthless.

The truth hurts, but for the voters, it needs to be said. Representative Paul knows it and the polls suggest it’s something that is needed to be said.

Paul’s fellow frontrunners in the race for the Republican Party’s nomination have largely refrained from straying from mainstream GOP ideologies. While Paul is no doubt a career conservative, he has managed to separate himself from the rest of the pack by suggesting that the weary ways of modern America aren’t all that his peers have cracked them out to be. Rather, says Paul, America is destined to fail any further if it doesn’t try to pick itself up and piece it back together.

During recent Republican Party debates, GOP contenders have all but waged war with competing nations to continue with America’s policy of governing the globe. According to Paul, however, it is that elitist attitude which is spawning terrorist attacks and other strikes against the States. Fellow GOP hopeful Michele Bachmann writes Paul’s philosophies on such as ludicrous and detrimental to American security, but for the only Republican contender with military experience — and decades in office — he not only thinks otherwise but would seem to know best.

Others have remained amazingly optimistic about America’s economy but have not come close to proposing a legitimate plan for revamping it. Paul, however, recently warned that the current conditions of the country come close to mimicking that of the Soviet Union before its collapse. To avoid this, warns the congressman, America should stop fighting wars overseas, abolish the Federal Reserve and a series of other unnecessary offices if it wants to save its economy.

Once again, all other contenders won’t come close to tackling an issue that doesn’t go hand-in-hand with the mainstream goals of the GOP. Paul, however, wants to end the fed and foreign aid, a move that he says in part could add $1 trillion to America’s budget in only one years’ time.

Radical ideas? Absolutely. But with the last few administrations only worsening America’s standing, a change of pace is without a doubt what America needs to get back on track. That’s why Paul’s supporters — Middle American conservatives concerned about a collapse of the country and young adults thinking outside the box — are coming together in droves.

Those rooting for the Republican congressman are doing so strong enough that they have propelled their candidate to first place in the polls in Iowa. The mainstream media and core GOP establishment, as a result, are not running scared. Does it guarantee a victory for the lawmaker come next week? It could be. Regardless of the outcome, however, it looks as though Paul isn’t afraid to speak his mind and more and more Americans are becoming scared of those that can’t.

The Fed, working through the ECB with its swap lines, is bailing out EU Banks

Wednesday, December 28, 8:36 AM Make no mistake, writes former Dallas Fed VP Gerald O’Driscoll, the Fed – working through the ECB with its swap lines – is bailing out EU banks and, indirectly, EU governments. Technically not loans, swaps allow the Fed to lend money without reporting it as such, and the figure has ballooned nearly $100B in December. It’s similar to the way Greece hid its mammoth debt through the use of swaps (that worked out well).

 

ELRON – VOXEO The Israeli Defense Firm That Tallies The Iowa Caucus

 


The Iowa caucus is only a few days away and the nation’s attention will be directed to the results, which signify the beginning of the U.S. presidential race. But does anyone watch who tallies the results of the Iowa caucus?

The Iowa caucus results were tallied in 2004 by a company that is headed by a man whose company was bought by Elron Electronics, the Israeli defense firm. I suspect that it will be the same this year. Don’t expect to see any grassroots political activists doing the tally in Iowa. The Israeli defense establishment takes care of that part of the American “democratic” election process.

VOXEO

In the summer of 2004, I first learned that a foreign and out-of-state company using Interactive Voice Response (IVR) technology tallied the Iowa caucus results.

The system used to tally the 2004 Iowa caucus results was provided by a company called Voxeo, which was apparently based in Orlando, Florida. (Yellow flag goes up in the mind of those familiar with Orlando and electronic vote fraud history. See Bollyn article on Wang below.)

The calls from the nearly 2,000 caucus centers in Iowa went to a Voxeo call center in Atlanta, Georgia.

On January 31, 2005, I wrote to Michelle Bauer, Iowa’s Secretary of State with some questions about the use of Voxeo, a foreign company located in Florida, to tally the results of the Iowa caucus:

Subject: How was the Iowa Caucus Tallied?

Dear Sirs,

When I visited the headquarters of the Democratic Party in Des Moines last summer, I learned that the tally of the Iowa caucus had been “out-sourced” to a company in Atlanta, Georgia.

What this means is that the tallying of the Iowa caucus results was done over the telephone, using the touch-tone buttons, to enter the results from each caucus locationS

I am interested in how this was done, and why. Why did the Democratic Party allow the crucial tally of the caucus results to be done by a company in Atlanta? Don’t they trust their own math skills?

Can any of you provide any information about this matter?

Kind regards,
Christopher Bollyn

A person named Mike Milligan wrote back on behalf of Secretary of State Bauer:

Mike Milligan wrote:
Dear Christopher:

The Secretary of State forwarded me the email you sent to then on Monday, January 31, 2004 [sic] regarding the Iowa Caucuses.

Unfortunately, you either received some incorrect information in your travels or are confused. The Iowa Democratic Party completed all of the caucus night tabulations in Iowa, in the Des Moines/Polk County Convention Center, which was the Caucus night HQ. In fact, our tech staff wrote the software that tabulated the results.

To answer your second to last question, we feel we have a comfortable grasp of mathematics.

Sincerely,
MWM
Mike Milligan,
Executive Director Iowa Democratic Party
(515) 244-7292 ex. 676

I wrote this note back to Mr. Milligan:

Dear Mr. Milligan,

I am responding to you about how the caucus results for the Iowa Democratic Party were tallied on the night of the nation’s first caucus. After checking my sources, I can assure you that it is correct that an out-of-state telephone/computer system tallied the Iowa precinct results.

The system used was provided by Voxeo Corporation based in Orlando, Florida. The calls went from Iowa to a call center in Atlanta, Georgia.

See: http://www.voxeo.com/

This information was first provided to me last August by John McCormally, Communications Director for the Iowa Democratic Party in Des Moines, Iowa.

Today I called Voxeo (800) 305-5771 in Orlando and although I didn’t go into detail, the receptionist confirmed that Voxeo had conducted the telephone tally of the Iowa Democratic Caucus results.

How is it that you don’t know that?

McCormally told me that chairmen were selected in all 1,993 precincts and these chairmen called in on touch-tone phones and after giving their PIN number, were able to enter the results from their precinct using the touch-tone number pad.

I’m not going to go into great detail at this point, but this procedure of using an out-of-state computer company to tally the precinct results for the Iowa Democratic Caucus lacks the transparency and openness that one might expect in this exercise in grass-roots poll.

Clearly, if someone wanted to adjust the results, it would be the easiest thing to do to do it through this computer system in Orlando, Florida. The Democrats in Iowa would never be aware of it, regardless of their math skills, unless the paper results were carefully audited in an open and honest manner.

Christopher Bollyn

THE ISRAELIS & VOXEO

Now, who really is Voxeo, and why are the Iowa caucus results tallied by them? I don’t know if the 2008 Iowa results will be tallied in the same way, but I wouldn’t doubt it.

Voxeo is headed by Jonathan Taylor, who is the company’s President and CEO. This is what his Voxeo webpage says about him:

Jonathan combined his experience in both business operations and technology innovation to found Voxeo in 1999. Under his guidance, Voxeo has seen triple-digit revenue growth for four consecutive years and has been profitable since January, 2004. Prior to Voxeo, Jonathan founded and helped bring three additional software and infrastructure service companies to profitability.

“From 1995 to 1997, Jonathan was the founder and President of InterResearch and Development Group (IRdg), Inc. IRdg created and licensed iPost – the first internet powered OEM unified messaging solution – to leading telecommunications providers including Ericsson,

Motorola and Unisys. IRdg was acquired by Elron Electronic Industries (Nasdq: ELRN) subsidiary MediaGate in 1997.”

There you have it. Jonathan Taylor’s company, which he founded, was taken over by Elron Electronic Industries, the Israeli defense high tech company:

In its early days, Elron focused on defense, particularly electronics and avionics, as well as the emerging medical and technology sectors. In 1966, Elron founded Elbit, which combined the expertise of the Ministry of Defense-Research Institute in special computer design with Elron’s experience in electronic product design, manufacture and management. Source: http://www.elron.net/default.asp?Pa…

This is important information that Americans need to know and which they will not find in the Zionist-controlled media in the United States. It needs to be understood that the entire election process in the United States is a fraud. More than that, it is a fraud that is being perpetrated by the Israeli defense establishment on the naïve and gullible American public.

The sine qua non of an honest and transparent election process is the open counting of the votes by the voters themselves in each polling station in front of the open eyes of other citizens and members of the media. Any compromise in this most fundamental and essential process which acts to remove the citizenry from the vote-counting process simply cannot be accepted.

This is what Americans MUST get back to, in every polling station in the nation: paper ballots that are hand counted in front of the public.

Nothing else will do to protect their democratic franchise in the United States – NOTHING.

* * * * * * *

Christopher Bollyn is an independent journalist who needs the support of his readers. If you value his research and writing, please send a donation via PayPal to: bollyn @ bollynbooks.com or shop @ bollynbooks.com

Recommended Reading:

“Florida Election Stolen — Computer Programmer Reveals Scheme to Steal 2000 Vote” Christopher Bollyn, 21 December 2004 http://www.bollyn.com/index/?id=105…

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Reporter Chris Bollyn Proves Why WE Must Watch and PUBLISH Iowa Count! December 31st

This article focusus on the DEMOCRATIC PARTY process in 2004, which probably explains how John Kerry went from no where to “winner” in the Iowa Caucus that year.

Bollyn’s article is shocking, and he and his family are now in hiding outside the USA after being tasered for no reason by two Homeland Security-trained plain clothes policemen in Hoffman Estates, Illinois (near Chicago) in 2006. Also see Bollyn’s article, “How a Private Company Counts our Votes on Election Night” linked on the home page of votefraud.org in the lower left hand blue box.

This excellent reporting underscores why all Iowans and NH voters must support Watch the Vote 2008 and the newly up tally board at:

http://www.LibertyBroadcastNetwork.org — In-home correspondents will be listed for each county in Iowa. Now all we need is for the Iowa Caucus goers to do one more thing before they go home on Jan 3, Iowa Caucus nite: make a cell phone call to the in-home correspondent assigned to your county at http://www.LibertyBroadcastNetwork.org — and report the eye-witness results you saw at your caucus. This is how to checkmate any chicanery in the GOP Iowa Caucus (or the Democratic).

(The list of in-home correspondents assigned to your county should be up anytime on LibertyBroadcastNetwork.org. There will also be an open nationwide conference call on Iowa Caucus nite so people can call in and ask questions anytime throughout the nite if there is any uncertainly on what to do or who to call on the actual Caucus nite.)

It is important to note that LibertyBroadcastNetwork.org has set up a system that goes live IMMEDIATELY on the internet, with updated tallies. The plan announced by Ron Paul HQ in Iowa appear useless, as Drew Ivers and the other decision makers there are planning to keep the tally secret. Without going public — what keeps the Iowa GOP and the Big TV Network consortium (now called National Election Pool, formerly Voter News Service) honest?

House G.O.P. Leaders Agree to Extension of Payroll Tax Cut

WASHINGTON — Bowing under intense pressure from members of their own party, House Republican leaders agreed Thursday to accept a temporary extension of the payroll tax cut, beating a hasty retreat from a showdown that Republicans increasingly saw as a threat to their election opportunities next year.

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Philip Scott Andrews/The New York Times

John A. Boehner, the speaker of the House, announced on Thursday that Republicans had reached an agreement on the payroll tax cut.

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Under a deal reached between House and Senate leaders, the House will now approve as early as Friday the two-month extension of a payroll tax holiday and unemployment benefits approved by the Senate last Saturday, and the Senate will appoint members of a House-Senate conference committee to negotiate legislation to extend both benefits through 2012.

House Republicans — who rejected an almost identical deal on Tuesday — collapsed under the political rubble that has accumulated over the week, much of it from their own party, worried that the blockade would do serious damage to their appeal to voters.

The House speaker, John A. Boehner, determined to put the issue behind his party, announced the decision over the phone to members on Thursday, and did not permit the usual back and forth that is common on such calls, enraging many of them.

After his conversation with lawmakers, the speaker conceded to reporters that it might not have been “politically the smartest thing in the world” for House Republicans to put themselves between a tax cut and the 160 million American workers who would benefit from it, and to allow President Obama and Congressional Democrats to seize the momentum on the issue.

The agreement ended a partisan fight that threatened to keep Congress and Mr. Obama in town through Christmas and was just the latest of the bitter struggles over fiscal policy involving House conservatives, the president and the Democratic-controlled Senate.

Under the deal, the employee’s share of the Social Securitypayroll tax will stay at the current level, 4.2 percent of wages, through Feb. 29. In the absence of Congressional action, it would revert to the usual 6.2 percent next month. The government will also continue paying unemployment insurance benefits under current policy through February. Without Congressional action, many of the long-term unemployed would begin losing benefits next month.

In addition, under the agreement, Medicare will continue paying doctors at current rates for two months, averting a 27 percent cut that would otherwise occur on Jan. 1.

The new deal makes minor adjustments to make it easier for small businesses to cope with the tax changes and prevents manipulation of an employee’s pay should the tax cut extension fail to go beyond two months.

The House, which is in pro forma session, could seal the deal Friday unless a member raises an objection on the floor; the Senate would then do the same. If an objection occurs, Mr. Boehner will summon the full House back next week for a formal vote, he said.

Mr. Obama, who has reaped political benefits from the standoff, welcomed the outcome.

“This is good news, just in time for the holidays,” he said in a statement. “This is the right thing to do to strengthen our families, grow our economy, and create new jobs. This is real money that will make a real difference in people’s lives. ”

In the end, the agreement seemed a clear victory for Mr. Obama and the Democrats — at least for now. They managed to change the narrative from one about Mr. Obama making a concession — he agreed to a provision in the bill to speed the approval process for an oil pipeline — to one about stonewalling House Republicans, who have spent much of the year holding the upper hand of divided government.

Democrats have been quick to exploit the issue. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee this week unleashed automated phone calls, some of which were recorded by the Democratic strategist James Carville, in the districts of 20 targeted House Republicans.

The onslaught will continue. “This is a defining moment,” said the head of the committee, Representative Steve Israel, Democrat of New York. “This by itself doesn’t necessarily alter the political landscape, but the chronic chaos and repeated extremism will help us win back the House.”

The push to find a quick resolution was touched off Thursday by Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, who had negotiated the two-month extension. After a few days of silence, he called on the House to accept a temporary continuation of the tax cut, and to extend unemployment pay, as long as Senate Democrats committed to quickly opening negotiations over a yearlong agreement.

Anonymous attacking creators of indefinite detention bill

With President Obama read to sign away the freedoms of Americans by inking his name to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, opponents are already going after the lawmakers that made the legislation possible.

The act, abbreviated as NDAA FY2012, managed to make its way through Congress with overwhelming support in recent days, despite legislation that allows for Americans to be detained indefinitely and tortured by authorities for the mere suspicion of committing “a belligerent act.” The Obama administration originally decreed that they would veto the bill, only for the White House to announce a change of heart on Wednesday this week.

With the passing of the act almost certain at this point, hackers aligned to the massive collective Anonymous are taking a stab at staking out the politicians that helped put the bill in the president’s hands.

On Wednesday, Internet hacktivists gathered on the Web to find a way to take on the lawmakers, who have allowed for this detrimental legislation to make it all the way to the Oval Office desk. Upon discussion of routes to take to show their opposition to the overwhelming number of politicians who voted in favor of NDAA, Anonymous members agreed to begin with Senator Robert J Portman, a Republican lawmaker from the state of Ohio (First PIC Below).

By Thursday morning, an Anonymous operative released personal information pertaining to the lawmaker, and revealed that not only was Sen. Portman among the politicians to vote “aye” on the legislation, but it has also been revealed that the senator had good reason to do so.

According to a OpenCongress.org, Sen. Portman received $272,853 from special interest groups that have shown support for NDAA.

“Robert J. Portman, we plan to make an example of you,” writes an Anonymous operative. The hacktivist has also released personal data including the senator’s home address, phone number and social networking accounts in an attempt to further an infiltration from the Internet to show the opposition to the bill that colossally impacts the constitutional rights of Americans.

According to the information posted by the operative, the nearly $300,000 in special interest monies lobbied at Portman could have helped him purchase around $1.7 million in real estate in Ohio.

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The next lawmaker to receive anywhere near as much as Sen. Portman is Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat from Nevada and third-ranked official in Congress, who pulled in more than $100,000 less than his Ohio counterpart with $172,635.

Among the supporters of NDAA are California-based manufacturer Surefire, L.L.C., who won a $23 million contract from the Department of Defense three months ago. Also contributing to the cause (and the lawmakers who voted ‘yes’) are Honeywell (who secured a $93 million deal with the Pentagon last May and a $24 million contract this year) and Bluewater Defense, a longtime DoD-ally that produces, among other garments, fire resistant combat uniforms.

When the military storms down your door for suspicion of “belligerent” acts, you can thank Bluewater and Senator Portman for the lovely flame-proof attire the soldiers will be donned in as they haul you off to Gitmo.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Below)

Walnut Creek Jewish Community Center set to shut down Friday, 12/16/2011

<<<—CLICK PIC FOR LINK:

The Contra Costa Jewish Community Center in Walnut Creek is shutting down Friday and suspending its adult day care programs and preschool — a move that has blindsided patrons of the 27-year-old center.

“I am absolutely sick,” Darby Lockett said Thursday outside the center on Tice Valley Road. For two years Lockett and her husband, Dudley, have come to the center for an adult day program for people with Alzheimer’s, which Dudley attends. Darby is part of a support group there once a week.

The teachers, who are losing their jobs, are wonderful, said Lockett, who doesn’t know where she and her husband will go.

The JCC sent a letter Wednesday to parents of the preschool program, saying activities would be suspended starting Friday. The center, apparently having major financial difficulties, broke off from the Jewish Federation and The Jewish Community Foundation of the East Bay, based in Oakland, about a year and a half ago. The JCC becoming its own entity had nothing to do with the closure, said Rabbi James Brandt, CEO of the federation and foundation. Instead, he cited the economy and difficulties in fundraising as the reasons, adding that he was as shocked as everyone else to learn Wednesday of the closure.

“At an urgent board meeting last week it was determined that we are now at a point where the current offerings and corresponding fundraising activity cannot guarantee sufficient cash to cover the programs at the Tice Valley facility,” according to the letter from Robert Rich, JCC president, who did not return calls for comment. “Given this, the only course to take was, and is, to suspend the activities of the (adult day program), the JCC preschool and all other on-site programming.”

The letter also said employees at the center will be laid off and the property put up for sale.

With around 400 members and about 70 children in the preschool, the center apparently has had financial problems for the past few years. A federal tax return covering April to June 2010 shows a $151,253 deficit just for those three months. The JCC had to begin filing its own tax records after spinning off from the federation.

Brandt said they are working to help the families displaced by the closure.

“As sad as this is, one of the things that is heartening to me is we have been working full time with preschools and synagogues in the community … and they are really coming together to find new options for the displaced children,” he said.

Parents gathered at the center Thursday said their main concern is the kids. They said they are working feverishly to plot their next move; they hope they can somehow keep the preschool program going, either at the JCC or somewhere else.

Thursday was the Hanukkah party at the school, and parent Mark Lipton wondered how you tell your child that today is the party and tomorrow is the last time they may see their friends.

“Because it’s children, the number one goal is continuity,” he said.

Other parents said that because it’s winter break, finding a new school immediately may be impossible. The parents have set up an email address — helpjcckids@gmail.com — for anyone who wants to donate or get information.

The shock over news of the closure was evident Thursday. Making it harder to fathom was that, for years, the organization had told its members it wanted to expand and was asking for money to fund that.

In 2008, the JCC won the right from the City Council to develop 2.6 acres next to its Tice Valley center into an 80-unit condo complex. It was a controversial approval, but JCC leaders said the development was necessary to raise money to help pay for a $40 million expansion planned for the center. That development was never started.

Another wrinkle is that the city’s Tice Valley Gym, next door to the Jewish center, was built in 1995 on JCC-owned land. In exchange, the JCC is allowed to use the gym, where it still plans to hold some of its extracurricular classes, said Barry Gordon, director of Arts, Recreation and Community Service for the city. And the city has a 99-year lease for the gym land, so even if the JCC is sold, the city gym will remain, he said.

No one associated with the JCC returned calls for comment.