Foreclosure crisis is class warfare

September 16, 2012

Sometimes you just feel to kick the door so to speak, when you want to say what you need to say. This is such a case. In any way thinkable the title of this text says what is happening. I just read this little reuters article on a courtcase concerning the shady circumstances under which foreclosures happen in the US. The mortgages, being the financial products that they are, chopped up and sold and resold across the world the way they are the item that expose social relations here.

What I found especially interesting to read is that the people who own the house and carry the burden of debt are in the most obscure situation concerning their rights. They have this mortgage in order to buy a physical house. They work and they pay of the debts until the house is truly theirs. In this scheme there is such a virtual notion of value. Of non-existent money that gets actualized through their labor and their commtiment to the contract.

On the other hand the payments get registeredand mediated through a totally obscure and intransparent scheme called MERS. The wiki says  about MERS(I’m not gonna pretend I do this blog with academic precision btw) :

Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) is an American privately held company that operates an electronic registry designed to track servicing rights and ownership of mortgage loans in the United States.[1] MERS is owned by holding company MERSCORP, Inc.

So its this service that obscures the relation between the debtor and the borrower. So the debtor party is clearly defined, yet the borrower isn’t. In case MERS claims that a house is up for foreclosure its clear who is going to have to leave the house. But the borrowers do not know who to fight to fight this particular claim. To be able to fight such a claim is an individual right. To be able to defend your house from external threats is a condition for a good life.

The fact that the borrower could be anyone who happens to have a piece of the rights to the mortgage exactly is the injustice in this system.


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