If Snowden Isn’t a Whistleblower, Why Are His Disclosures on NSA Spying Having This Effect?

By: Tuesday July 16, 2013 3:10 pm

Nineteen organizations including Calguns Foundation, a gun owners group, and the First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles, have come together to file a lawsuit against the National Security Agency (NSA) for violating their right to freedom of association under the First Amendment by collecting and storing, in bulk, data from their members’ call records.

 

Judge Strikes Down Constitutional Challenge to the Filibuster

By: Friday December 21, 2012 12:51 pm

If there’s going to be reform to the Senate’s rules, it’s going to have to come from the Senate itself. That’s the implication of a ruling in federal court today throwing out a Constitutional challenge to the filibuster.

Glenn Hubbard’s Hilarious Deposition on Behalf of Countrywide

By: Friday December 21, 2012 8:16 am

More than half of the loans Glenn Hubbard “studied” came from lenders being sued by other entities for fraud in their underwriting process.

It’s pretty incredible that Hubbard, an academic, thought he could throw this fastball by lawyers involved in MBS litigation for years and years. And it’s almost a shock that Countrywide got so little for their money.

The Mortgage Scam Against Widows, and Why No Mortgage Lender Should Ever Get Legal Immunity

By: Thursday December 20, 2012 5:54 am

Dealbook had an item about the qualified mortgage rule and the bid by mortgage lenders to acquire a “safe harbor,” essentially a shield against consumer lawsuits, in the process. I’ve already gone over this topic and continue to oppose giving banks a safe harbor of any kind on the merits. But just to shift gears away from the precise details for a moment, consider why you would want to give any entity that does something like this protection from legal exposure:

Mortgage Backed Securities Lawsuits Still Proliferate

By: Tuesday December 18, 2012 2:01 pm

While we wait for more settlements in the Libor case, banks continue to face exposure for their fraudulent mortgage conduct dating back to the housing bubble. Two more major lawsuits emerged yesterday.

Meet the Robo-Witnesses: Foreclosure Defense Lawyer Tom Cox on New Practices in Foreclosure Fraud

By: Thursday December 13, 2012 8:14 am

Last week, Thomas Cox, the Maine lawyer who performed the deposition that basically exposed robo-signing, won the $100,000 Purpose Prize for his work on behalf of homeowners at risk of foreclosure. I spoke with Cox this week to get a ground-level picture of what is happening in the courts in the post-settlement landscape. Have banks cleaned up their foreclosure practices? Are homeowners still getting the shaft?

The Anti-Due Process Bias of Housing Reporters and Analysts

By: Monday November 19, 2012 9:15 am

Existing-home sales rose 2.1% in October, with the number coming in slightly above expectations, although the previous month’s numbers were revised down. Inventory has decreased 21% year-over-year (in no small part due to structural factors like trapped borrowers not putting their houses on the market, as well as artificial constraints on supply from banks keeping homes off the market).

BP Criminal Settlement Announced: $4.5 Billion Fine, 2 Charged With Manslaughter

By: Thursday November 15, 2012 11:47 am

So now we have an answer to the talk of a settlement in the BP oil disaster case. The company will pay a total of $4.5 billion in fines and payments, as well as admit to criminal charges. But the fines and payments do not include civil violations of either the Clean Water Act or the Oil Pollution Act, which carry additional fines of up to $21 billion.

BP, Justice Department Close to Settlement in Deepwater Horizon Case; BP to Plead Guilty of Criminal Misconduct

By: Thursday November 15, 2012 6:32 am

Well, I think we’ve figured out how an elite corporation can receive criminal charges in 21st-century America. All you have to do is spill 205.8 million gallons of oil into a US waterway. Then, you’re just going to have to cop a criminal misconduct plea, as long as the Justice Department gives you immunity from future suits and wraps up all your negligence in one case.

Supreme Court Will Hear Challenge to Voting Rights Act

By: Friday November 9, 2012 3:20 pm

Part of the success in beating back efforts to limit election participation in a number of Republican-led states came from the work of the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department, which used its pre-clearance authority under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act to block measures that could have disenfranchised minorities, like district-level maps in Texas and a stringent voter ID law in South Carolina. Nine states and several localities with a history of discrimination are subject to pre-clearance rules that force them to get approval from DoJ for any voting law changes. And now, the Supreme Court will hear a challenge to Section 5.

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