Snark: to annoy or irritate

"Snark" has been in English language dictionaries since at least 1906, and Lewis Carroll used the word to describe a mythological animal in his poem, The Hunting of the Snark (1874). Most recently, the word has come to characterize snappish, sarcastic, or mean-spirited comments or actions directed at those who annoy or irritate us.

At first, this blog was just going be a place to gripe, but because it's more satisfying to take action than it is to merely complain, now most of the posts/reposts suggest ways to get involved in solving problems.

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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Tell Obama: Hold Banks Accountable

A message from

Some people just don't get it.
Tens of thousands of Americans have taken to the streets to demand accountability for the banks. But some members of the Obama administration—including members of his Cabinet—are pushing for a terrible deal to let the big banks off the hook for selling bad mortgages and then illegally foreclosing on homeowners—destroying the American Dream for millions of families.1

The president's top campaign advisors have said that he's going to run for re-election on his record of holding Wall Street accountable2—but that'll be impossible if his administration pushes for another giveaway for the Wall Street banks who crashed our economy. And that could happen any day now.3

Can you sign our petition to President Obama right now telling him that we need a full investigation into the banks' wrongdoing, not another "deal" that lets them off the hook? 

We'll deliver it to the White House and to the campaign headquarters in Chicago. Here's what it says: "The banks have to be held accountable for destroying the American Dream for so many families. No immunity for the banks before a full investigation is done."

Members of the Obama administration have said that the immunity they're offering the banks would be very narrow. But we can't know if what the banks are being asked to pay is fair without a full investigation. What's already come out is shocking—intentionally overlooking problematic documentation, hiring "robo-signers" to sign thousands of documents without reading them, and even forging critical legal documents.4

And while the administration says we have to cut a deal because it's the only way to get homeowners relief quickly, what the banks are offering would only help a fraction of the homeowners who are in trouble, and it's not even clear how many of them it would allow to stay in their homes.5

Some state attorneys general—led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden—have walked away from the deal, because they believe it doesn't go nearly far enough.6 Butmembers of the administration, including Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan, are continuing to push for a deal—any deal—so they can say they won something against the banks.7

That's why it's so critical that we speak up now and say that granting the banks immunity before we know the scale of their wrongdoing makes no sense. A deal could come any day, so we all need to send a message to the president that he needs to step up and hold the banks accountable. Click below to sign now:

Thanks for all you do.

Daniel, Elena, Sarah, Mark, and the rest of the MoveOn team
1. "A Deal That Wouldn't Sting," The New York Times, October 29, 2011

"'Robo-signing' of mortgages still a problem," CBS News, July 18, 2011

2. "White House officials defend economic efforts, hit Republicans for blocking," The Hill, October 30, 2011

"Obama plans to turn anti-Wall Street anger on Mitt Romney, Republicans," The Washington Post, October 14, 2011

3. "A Deal That Wouldn't Sting," The New York Times, October 29, 2011

4. Ibid.
5. "State accuses Bank of America unit of thousands of illegal foreclosures," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 5, 2011
"4ClosureFraud Posts Lender Processing Services Mortgage Document Fabrication Price Sheet," naked capitalism, October 3, 2010

"Robo-signing: Just the start of bigger problems," CNNMoney, October 22, 2010

6. "Shake-Up in Mortgage Investigation," The New York Times, August 23, 2011
7. "Geithner seeks swift foreclosure pact with banks," Reuters, March 15, 2011

"A Deal That Wouldn't Sting," The New York Times, October 29, 2011
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