Jon Stewart Eviscerates Free-Market Libertarianism in Bit on Illegal Foreclosure
Last night on the Daily Show, Jon Stewart took apart the notion that an unregulated "free market" is the key to American prosperity. Taking on the banking industry's despicable taste for illegal foreclosures, Stewart mocked the idea that regulating banks that repeatedly showcase their incompetence and lack of concern for their clients could somehow make the situation worse.
"The government's so stupid. Free market should run the country. Ayn Rand's the best author ever. I can't wait till my senior year," Stewart said mocking the libertarian rhetoric, "But did you know the public sector has no monopoly on ruining everything?"
Between 2009 and 2010, four million homeowners faced foreclosures filed wrongfully. "That's only two million homes a year," joked Stewart, "and this is the private sector doing this. I'm sure it's easy for them to track the paper work and the mortgages and correct the errors." Not so fast. As Stewart said, "It turns out the big banks didn't enjoy filling out paper work for every single mortgage...so they formed a consortium [MERG], a mortage dumpster if you will, that would allow them these mortgages to trade electronically within this corporation they were all shareholders of." MERG, as it turned out, made tracking these mortgages and wrongful foreclosures nearly impossible.
Stewart wrapped up the segment with some musings on the importance of (adequate) government regulation, as well as the failure of the government to do so. Then, of course, he laughs at how, despite some 4 million foreclosure mistakes, none of these banksters are in jail. Despite a $9 billion settlement (a number arbitrarily decided), there is still no justice for the people responsible, nor the Americans who were victimized by banker greed.
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