Wednesday, December 2, 2020

BIG Bucks From Nothin'

 Remember the great housing bubble of 2009?

That was the phenomenon caused by a decade or more of predatory mortgage loans made by BIG MONEY.

The format was simple: get some poor stupid schmuck with no money to sign for a mortgage that he couldn't afford but make the front end terms and conditions so lenient that the poor schmuck could make a couple of payments; once a mortgage had been closed, quick like a bunny, BIG MONEY loaded it and all the huge pile of recent other schmucks into huge batches of other schmuck mortgages creating gigantic incomprehensible securities and sold them to investors; they were dubbed investment grade securities; they were in fact fictional securities.

When that fiction began to unravel as the schmucks ceased paying, the financial system first, of the United States, and then of the entire world flirted with collapse.

Something had to be done.

So Ol' Mitch and the boys came up with a trillion dollars to bail out the banks; a key use of those funds was to pay all the year end bonuses due to the bankers (the clerical people of BIG MONEY all lost their jobs of course).

Most people's interpretation of the BIG MONEY Schmuck Mortgage story would have seen pretty clear cut massive criminality, but nobody went to jail.

Somewhere in all of that the government ended up owning a huge batch of Securitized Schmuck Mortgages (SSMs).

Everybody was trying to figure out what to do with all that fictional paper.

The solution turned out to be to give it all away.

People like Steve Mnuchin were given paper with a face value of hundreds of billions but a fact value of nothing.

And "Nothin' aint worth nothin' but it's free".

However, there was a way to make fiction have value, since the real estate was real, it was the ability to pay for it that was fictional.

To milk the value out of all of that fictional paper all Ol' Steve had to do was turn all the people who had signed the pretend mortgages into the street.

Once they were on the street the homes that they had been occupying could be fixed up - Steve isn't a poor man, just a well positioned one - and sold.

It turned out there was massive cash available in the world, and that cash loved buying heavily discounted American real estate.

All of a sudden nothin' was worth somethin' and it was far from free.

It turns out that if somebody gives you something that is so dicey that it is going to be hard to sell and if that something, when received free gratis has immense value, there is real money to be made.

All you have to do is flush a bunch of proto serfs onto the street.

So throughout the 2010s the homeless population swelled; and Ol' Steve got to be Secretary of the Treasury.

And, I guess, a lot of his schmuck flushees found low rent habitation.

I don't know that, but that version of the story makes me happy.


Covid came along and millions of people were suddenly unemployed; probably a lot of them were unable to pay their rent.

So I guess they all would have been homeless.

But Ol' Mitch blinked at that moment and allowed a generous financial package to be passed and signed by donnie (he still thought he was going to win the election, so scorched earth had not entered his game plan yet) and a lot of those renters were able keep paying their mortgages.

Ol' Mitch and the boys could be heard muttering "this is not good; this is bad, really bad".

I guess we can surmise something here: when Ol' Mitch says he doesn't want to waste time trying to avoid massive evictions, homelessness, mayhem and misery I guess he's been talking to Ol' Steve.

I can see Ol' Steve licking his lips in anticipation of another great bump in personal net worth.

Because once everybody is evicted, and the impact of nobody having a job and, therefore, no money to spend on anything begins to trickle up, the landlords that have been forced to evict everybody are going to begin to fold (they have mortgages, after all; paying them was what they were using all that rental money for) there are going to be massive tranches of real estate that nobody can sell.

I guess we can solve the problem by giving all that stuff to Ol' Steve.

That will put both the landlords and their tenants out on the street.

I see a pattern developing.

Ol' Steve can probably make some money on all that unoccupied real estate if someone gives it to him free.


(Richard II said to Wat Tyler just before he had him killed - after Tyler had nearly unhorsed the British monarchy several hundred years before the French Revolution "Villeins thou art and villeins wilt thou be.")

The definition for villein is "a feudal tenant entirely subject to a lord or manor to whom he paid dues and services in return for land".

Sounds like serf to me.

And Ol' Mitch and the Boys are all working on it.

It's gonna be laughable when they get herded into the tent with the rest of us.

It might not be pretty.

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