Matt Taibbi Blasts Bank Of America For “Selling Oregano As Weed”

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Matt Taibbi was speaking to a group of Occupy Wall Street protesters about BoA’s central role causing the still-reverberating mortgage crisis, and explained the bank’s crimes thusly: “Mortgage backed securities are like banks selling oregano as weed. And that’s exactly what Bank of America was doing.”

Bank of America received more than $45 billion dollars in taxpayer funds when the economy tanked in 2008, and though it has paid that amount back, the company continues to break the law, paying the SEC nominal fees as the cost of doing business while its employees have admitted to committing fraud in the form of robosigning and other activities that would spell doom for most businesses. “If this were any other kind of industry,” Taibbi said, “these guys would be in jail.”

Taibbi also explained how many of the savvier financial institutions, once they realized their CDOs (which Taibbi described as a “bag of mortgages”) were “shit,” made money by betting against their own products. “It’s the exact same thing as buying a lot of cars with no brakes, then taking out life insurance policies on all the drivers.”

When asked what he thought the public can do about it, Taibbi recommended taking your money out of BoA and putting it in a local bank or credit union, and to contact your elected officials. “Attorneys general are the most likely to apply pressure on banks.”


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