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By Mandelman


It’s as surreal and as it is astonishing that any aspect of the foreclosure crisis being endured by homeowners in this country could possibly make things even incrementally worse. How can the dire become dreadful, the harrowing become horrendous, or something ghastly morph into something positively gruesome?

It makes me think of getting attacked by a polar bear, while about to freeze to death at the North Pole.

Do you think I’m being overly dramatic? I actually don’t, or at least not by much.

Although I’m not proud, I will admit that there are some aspects of our financial crisis to which I’ve become totally desensitized, entirely incapable of feeling anything but nonplussed pretty much regardless of the heinous nature of the “news.”

For example, the only response to emergent banking malfeasance, misconduct and corruption that I can muster has largely become… “oh, so what,” because getting all worked up about it has started feeling like getting upset at a dog for barking, or at the wind for blowing.

I think I stopped being able to feel much of anything when, at the end of last year, HSBC was fined almost $2 billion for “allowing itself to be used to launder a river of drug money flowing out of Mexico.” All I could think to say was, “Oh well, don’t do the crime if you can’t pay the fine.”

It was a very different feeling than what I had felt two years ago when it was Wells Fargo that was apparently laundering Mexican drug money. I remember feeling disgusted as I read about the more than 22,000 that had been killed in drug-related battles along the U.S. – Mexican border since 2006… that’s SINCE 2006.

But, then came the robo-signing scandal, the infamous consent orders, and the $25 billion National Mortgage Settlement, and by the time we got to the OCC’s Independent Foreclosure Review… I had no trouble just ignoring it completely. And I knew it wasn’t just me that was getting tired when the ill-conceived review didn’t even explode into a scandal of senate investigations after being attacked by external forces. Instead, one Monday morning it just fell apart all by itself.

I loved it when Goldman Sachs got fined $550 million over the Abacus transaction that I’ll never forget Sen. Cal Levin referring to as “a shitty deal,” when reading from the company’s …read more

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