HP originally ran this on 8/10, asking folks to send this to their congressmen. Maybe some did, thus the hearings today. Here's the reprint, feel free to send this to the Senators on the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee.
Isn't it a bit amazing that this committee, responsible for the oversight of housing issues, is having its first meeting on the epic housing ponzi scheme today? After years of the "housing bubble" being one of the biggest stories in America?
An open letter to Congress to call hearings on the corruption within the Real Estate Industrial Complex
I am calling on you to initiate hearings in regards to the corruption prevalent within the Real Estate Industrial Complex.
Many of these fraudulent and corrupt practices have led to the housing bubble, and now housing collapse. Initial points of investigation should include:
* Corrupt appraisers being paid off or promised future business in return for "making the numbers work"
* Mortgage brokers kicking back realtors when recommending their services
* Developers who gave money to bogus charities, who gave the money to new homebuyers to in order to purchase homes from those very developers
* Realtors steering clients to homes and developers where they were being paid bonus commissions or kickbacks, and not disclosing this to the buyer
* Rampant mortgage fraud, underwritten by firms who knew the applicant was unqualified, knowing that the loan was to be held by an unsuspecting third party or commoditized
* Deception practiced by the National Association of Realtors, promoting homeownership when they knew prices were declining and unsold inventory was skyrocketing
* Insider stock sale transactions by Bob Toll and others, dumping their shares at the peak while cheerleading their stock and prospects to the public, knowing the market was deteriorating, cancellations skyrocketing and their stock price and business model soon to decline
* Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac cooking the books and running out of control, imperiling the US financial system
* Congressmen taking outright bribes and campaign funding from the Real Estate Industrial Complex to "look the other way"
* The impact of misguided tax policy (cap gains tax exclusion for home sales) and policy ("ownership society" encouraging people who could not afford houses to buy at the peak) on the housing bubble
* The actions of the Fed and ultra-loose Fed policy in creating the bubble, including Greenspan's recommendation in front of Congress for people to get into ARM loans right before he began raising interest rates.
The population will be in full panic mode soon as the Housing Ponzi Scheme collapses. It is your duty to protect the American people from this ever happening again, by cleaning up the Real Estate Industrial Complex as you helped to with the corrupt Analyst / Investment Banking relationships, and corporate systemic fraud and deception during the dot-com bubble and bust.