Monthly Archives: November 2011

Journey into a Libertarian Future: Part II – The Strategy

By Andrew Dittmer, who recently finished his PhD in mathematics at Harvard and is currently continuing work on his thesis topic. He also taught mathematics at a local elementary school. Andrew enjoys explaining the recent history of the financial sector to a popular audience.

Simulposted at The Distributist Review

This is the second installment of a six-part interview. For the previous part, see here. Red indicates exact quotes from Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s 2001 book “Democracy: The God That Failed.”

ANDREW: Do other libertarians agree with your idea of a libertarian society?

CODE NAME CAIN: Well, we do have our differences. For example, the Cato Institute is severely compromised by numerous left-leaning libertarians such as David Boaz. The Cato tag-alongs and certain other prominent libertarians imagine that an extremely small government would be better than no government at all. They are, of course, wrong.

Read more...

Michael Olenick: Are Remotely-Processed Mortgage Assignments Another Smoking Gun?

By Michael Olenick, founder and CEO of Legalprise, and creator of FindtheFraud, a crowd sourced foreclosure document review system (still in alpha)

Assignments of mortgages are the legal instruments that transfers ownership of a mortgage from one party to another. In a securitized mortgage, a trust holds thousands of mortgages on behalf of investors. The investors in the various bonds that get cash flows from a single trust expect the trust to be in a position to take advantage of the rights conferred by the mortgages when certain events occur, usually payoff or default.

I used my crowd-sourced online software, www.findthefraud.com, to help categorize 2,500 assignments in Palm Beach County, FL, which were recorded in late 2008 and early 2009. Palm Beach County, like any Florida county, is a high foreclosure state and, thanks to strong public records laws in Florida, serves as a good bellwether about bank business practices both in Florida and around the country.

Read more...

New York Fed Brownshirt Jason Barker Urges Police to Crack Skulls of #OWS

I’ve deliberately waited a bit before examining the remark of one Jason Barker, an employee of the New York Fed, on a New York Post article the day after the November 17 Occupy Wall Street protests. My initial negative reaction to his comment still holds.

The Post piece itself presented itself as a celebration of police bloodlust…

Read more...

Journey into a Libertarian Future: Part I –The Vision

By Andrew Dittmer, who recently finished his PhD in mathematics at Harvard and is currently continuing work on his thesis topic. He also taught mathematics at a local elementary school. Andrew enjoys explaining the recent history of the financial sector to a popular audience.

Simulposted at The Distributist Review

Recently journalist Philip Pilkington has interviewed authors with unconventional perspectives on economic issues, including Satyajit Das and David Graeber. I thought it would be fun to interview someone too – but the man I interviewed uses a pseudonym. This is a six-part series.

ANDREW: Some people say that you represent a fringe view, and so interviewing you is a waste of time.

CODE NAME CAIN: If people obsessed with inside-the-Beltway conventional wisdom underestimate libertarians, so much the better.

Read more...

Matt Stoller: Mortgage Servicers – Getting Away with the Perfect Crime?

By Matt Stoller, the former Senior Policy Advisor to Rep. Alan Grayson and a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute. You can reach him at stoller (at) gmail.com or follow him on Twitter at @matthewstoller. Cross posted from New Deal 2.0

Without prosecutions, there’s nothing keeping fraud from becoming a standard business practice.

Read more...

Judge Rakoff Whacks SEC Yet Again, This Time Over Citi CDO Settlement

Judge Jed Rakoff’s latest ruing, nixing a $285 million settlement between the SEC and Citigroup over a billion dollar fund that came a cropper, has broader implications than simply embarrassing the securities regulator (which given the fallen standing of the agency, and low standards in Washington generally, is harder to do than it ought to be). Rakoff has effectively said judges have no business sanctioning settlements in which the accused party admits to nothing.

Read more...

Mosler/Pilkington: The IMF-ECB ‘Plan’ – Fig-Leaf upon Fig-Leaf

By Warren Mosler, an investment manager and creator of the mortgage swap and the current Eurofutures swap contract and Philip Pilkington, a journalist and writer based in Dublin, Ireland

Politics in the Eurozone has turned into a strange and tragic farce in the recent weeks and months. While the peripheral countries continue to judge successful economic policy on the amount of tax liabilities they can levy to smother their depressed economies, the big dogs play various games in which they try to hide their shame behind ever more sophisticated veils.

Read more...

Tom Ferguson: Democratic Governance Is Becoming Discredited

I suspect many Naked Capitalism readers would regard “democratic governance” as something of an oxymoron in the US. Our favorite curmudgeon, political scientist Tom Ferguson, discussed the failure of the supercommittee negotiations and what it means for politics and the economy. He sees the danger of government by technocrats, meaning experts who are really fronts for banking interests, as rising.

Read more...

Philip Pilkington: The Coming Age of Neocla

By Philip Pilkington, a journalist and writer living in Dublin, Ireland

We stand for the withering away of the state. At the same time we stand for the strongest state power that has ever existed. Is this “contradictory”? Yes, it is contradictory. But this contradiction fully reflects Marx’s dialectics.

– Josef Stalin in remarks to the Soviet Party congress in 1930

Such is the contorted nonsense that flows from doctrine and dogma when these become institutionalised. When dogma is confined to the armchair of the intellectual or the blackboard of the social scientist it is innocuous – simply an attempt by one individual to make sense of a world that they will never, in truth, ever make sense of. But when it comes to occupy a seat of power it becomes like a steamroller that can crush common sense and practicality in a misled attempt to change the world for the better.

Read more...