Following the National Mortgage Settlement, B.L. Zebub, Belial Bank’s once fearless leader, is waffling on whether to jump into the fray, and start writing down the mortgage balances for his Beleaguered Borrowers. Not that the milk of human kindness flows through his icy veins – he’s just trying to figure out an “angle” so he can game the system and still appear to care about The Little Guy. For the last three years, Belial Bank has put up incredible loan modification numbers without actually having to modify a single borrower’s loan. The trick, of course, has been to continually move the goal posts, so while their borrowers may get to the 80, 90, or 95-yard line, they never quite get the ball into the end zone. Once they get close, Belial either tells them they don’t qualify, or they can’t get a mod because they didn’t get their paperwork in on time.
B.L. has perfected this insidious shell game ever since he attended a banking industry seminar entitled “Loan Modification as Performance Art” which blends the best of Kabuki dancing and Liar’s Poker. From that moment on, as if awakening from a deep sleep, B.L. had an epiphany: “It’s not what you do that counts – it’s what you appear to do.” This little known mantra explains why the Behemoth Banks continuously chant to distressed homeowners: “We’re here to help,” when what they’re really saying is “We’re here to help you out of your home.”
So once again, B.L. has convened his trusted advisors to discuss the national mortgage settlement, which, he has learned, contains some interesting “incentives” to encourage the Big Banks to take principal write downs on their borrowers’ loans. B.L.’s plan is not to erase ALL borrower negative equity, but just enough to keep them in the game and on the field. As a Big Bank Servicer, B.L. knows all too well that he needs his borrowers’ loans to stay in the servicing pool, however non-performing, as long as possible before letting them slip into the Abyss. Since servicing fees for non-performing loans means Big Money to Big Banks, he needs to find a new gimmick to entice his borrowers. He has concluded that principal write downs, courtesy of the National Mortgage Settlement, may be just the ticket. Thus, for those distressed homeowners awash in negative equity, the promise of a principal write-down – however meager – may keep them circling the drain a bit longer before he pulls the plug.
Participating in this hastily convened conference call is B.L.’s legal intern, Les Guile, who was successful at the last meeting in totally alienating the head of Belial’s South American Derivatives Trading Desk, Chase N. Prophett, by suggesting he was “small minded” and “morally vacuous.” Liz Pendens of the title industry is on the phone, fidgeting, as usual, in anticipation of some new hair-brained idea from B.L. and his cronies. Joining in on the call is Dee Faulting, the Queen of Hearts in default servicing. Dee has just arrived back from a recent default servicing convention where she was awarded the title of “Most Inspirational” for her unwavering willingness to foreclose as many homeowners as possible regardless of the severity of their hardship. Damian Faust, Belial’s chief legal counsel, is back with us, after weathering a storm of protest over the vanity plate, “TBTF,” that he ordered for his new Porsche Carrera. Kenneth Y. Slick III (aka “KY”), is also on the phone conference. He is B.L.’s “Idea Man” whose most recent claim to fame was to suggest that Belial institute a $10.00 debit charge fee after Bank of America, following a storm of protest, retracted its $5.00 fee. B.L.’s loyal secretary, Lucy Furr, has dutifully transcribed this conversation, careful to redact even the hint of profanity, just in case Julian Assange got ahold of the transcript and made it public. Alas, Lucy failed again, which explains how this purloined post fell into my hands. – PCQ Continue reading “Belial Bank Discusses Principal Write-Downs”