Former Iraq chaplain arrested; Occupiers interrupt foreclosure auctions

Occupy marches on
Bishop arrested occupying Duarte Park, New York
Bishop George Packard, former Iraq chaplain arrested
Occupy movement spreads around world
Occupiers interrupt foreclosure auctions
UK labels occupiers as terrorists
Occupying vacant buildings
SEC prosecutes Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives

This video is on youtube Here

Yesterday in New York City, a retired Anglican bishop was arrested along with occupy protesters at Duarte Park. Bishop George Packard, who was once a military chaplain in Iraq, joined other protesters climbing over a chain-link fence. Just before the protest he had written on the internet: “What awaits us I do not know. I do know that for me, and the OWS, I know no violence is intended, only peaceful disobedience if it comes to that.” Gideon Oliver, president of the New York City chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, said between five and 10 members of the clergy were among those arrested. The protest movement against financial inequality has spread to cities throughout the United States and other countries. After Bishop Packard tumbled over the fence, he climbed onto a wooden bench and waved for the crowd to follow. Other priests mounted the ladder while the the crowd yanked up the base of the fence to make a large opening. Someone cut the lock on a gate, and dozens of people streamed inside, talking, dancing to rap music from a boom box, and urging the rest of the crowd to join them. But the party couldn’t last. The police, taken off guard at first, came pouring through the gate with flex cuffs and arrested everyone who didn’t flee, including Packard.

Ever since Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were taken over by the government in 2008, questions have swirled over who was responsible for their collapse. Friday, the Securities and Exchange Commission weighed in, filing fraud charges against former Fannie Mae CEO Daniel Mudd, former Freddie Mac CEO Richard Syron and four other former executives.

Federal officials say the mortgage giants lied to investors about the number of subprime loans they had on their books at the height of the credit boom. They also say the executives knew what was happening and even encouraged the deception.

The SEC says both companies loaded up their balance sheets with many billions of dollars in risky subprime mortgages. Both companies took pains to conceal their holdings from the public. The company had $141 billion of subprime exposure to loans. Syron and his colleagues were well aware of how risky its portfolio was. Fannie Mae acknowledged a small number of subprime loans, but failed to tell investors it also held risky Alternative-A mortgages, which require little or no documentation of a borrower’s income. Senior executives at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac consciously withheld this information from shareholders because it would hurt the value of the company’s stock and hurt the compensation that these executives received.

Meanwhile the occupy protests continue around the country interrupting foreclosure auctions and placing homeless people in vacant houses.

Comments are closed.