Yes, I shower.
(McClatchy) AUSTIN, Texas -- Tom DeLay, the former U.S. House majority leader whose name became synonymous with the Republicans' controversial rise to power, was found guilty today of laundering money in connection with the 2002 elections.This is a blog, so you can not see me right now, but trust me when I tell you I am doing my Happy Feet Dance around my apartment.*
Discovered by way of Jeri Ryan on Twitter. Resistance is futile.
(CNBC) When Congress comes back into session next week, it may consider measures intended to bolster the legal status of a controversial bank owned electronic mortgage registration system that contains three out of every five mortgages in the country.
The system is known as MERS, the acronym for a private company called Mortgage Electronic Registry Systems. Set up by banks in the 1997, MERS is a system for tracking ownership of home loans as they move from mortgage originator through the financial pipeline to the trusts set up when mortgage securities are sold.
The system has come under scrutiny by critics who charge MERS with facilitating slipshod practices. Recently, lawyers have filed lawsuits claiming that banks owe states billions of dollars for mortgage recording fees they avoided by using MERS.
Perhaps even more devastatingly, some critics say that sloppiness at MERS--which has just 40 full-time employees--may have botched chain of title for many mortgages. They say that MERS lacks standing to bring foreclosure actions, and the botched chain of title may cast doubts on whether anyone has clear enough ownership of some mortgages to foreclose on a defaulting borrower. The problems with MERS system led JPMorgan Chase [JPM 39.76 -0.26 (-0.65%) ] CEO Jamie Dimon to stop using MERS for foreclosures in 2008.
Now it appears that Congress may attempt to prevent any MERS meltdown from occurring. MERS is owned by all the biggest banks, and they certainly do not want it to be sunk by huge fines. Investors in mortgage-backed securities also do not want to see the value of their bonds sink because of doubts about the ownership of the underlying mortgages.
Aside from the fact that the Republicans and the right wing had decided long before January 20, 2009, that the Obama presidency would be a failure and that they would do everything they could to make it so, the simple fact remains that human nature is such that it is easier to convince the people that a vapor trail off the coast of California is a precursor to an invasion by the Borg than it is to convince 95% of the taxpaying public that their taxes actually went down last year. The more outrageous the story, the easier it is to sell. Orson Welles knew that in 1938; so did P.T. Barnum, and so did the folks who came up with the whiz-bang story that the universe was created in six days. After all, which sounds better; the Garden of Eden and a talking snake or a long boring science lecture on microbes adapting to a planet with carbon and water?
If his attempt was to look homophobic - well - he did a damn fine job.
• Showed up at the home of a private citizen three times, including once at 1:30 a.m. That incident is especially telling because it clearly was about harassing Mr. Armstrong, not engaging in free speech.
• Further engaged in behavior that, while not perhaps sufficient to charge criminal stalking, was harassing, uninvited and showed a pattern that was in the everyday sense, stalking.
• Harassing Armstrong's friends as they were socializing in Ann Arbor;
• Numerous calls to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office, Armstrong's employer, in an attempt to slander Armstrong -- and ultimately attempting to cause Pelosi to fire Armstrong;
• Attempting to "out" Armstrong's friends as homosexual -- several of whom were not gay.
Cox said Shirvell engaged in his campaign against Shirvell on company time and posted attacks on Armstrong on the Internet while at work.