All The Mail That's Fit To Print

All The Mail That’s Fit To Print

It’s been a while since I dipped into the BLB mailbag. It’s about time to see what kind of flack I receive.

First up is an email I received from a gentleman who referred to himself as the Director of Public Relations for Citi. Without hurling a single epithet, he informed me that the dispute with a lawyer/house renovator whose home was broken into by contractors for CitiMortage was “resolved” on December 10, 2014. He did not indicate what that “resolution” might have entailed, but we assume, based upon the nature of the dispute (“Show Me The Money!”), it involved coin of the realm passing from Citi and/or its contractor to the homeowner/attorney. While Toni Braxton may yearn for her heart to be unbroken, we aren’t aware of any way in which you can unbreak into a house.

Another recent blog post on a scholarly article written by the University of Alabama Law Professor Julie Anderson Hill on the legal conundrum for banks trying to bank state legal – federal illegal marijuana-related businesses in Colorado, I received an email from Professor Hill. She corrected me on the nature of the “Mary Jane” credit union formed in Colorado, Fourth Corner Credit Union. I thought that it was the first special purpose “Cannabis Cooperative” authorized under Colorado law. Instead, Fourth Corner is a state-chartered credit union. Because of quirk’s in Colorado law, it may open its doors prior to receiving deposit insurance from the NCUA (a process that could take years), although it still needs approval by the Federal Reserve System of a master account. The organizers think that this approval process by the Fed is a sure thing, but neither Professor Hill nor I am as confident. On the other hand, it’s not that there is any precedent on which to base an opinion, so we’re just going to have to wait and see. The organizers had, according to press reports, hoped to be up and running by January 1, 2015, but that hasn’t occurred. Stay tuned.

Finally, a financial institution trade official asked if I thought that Maxine Waters had personally drafted the press release that contained the following words, allegedly spoken by her:

“The disparate impact standard is absolutely essential to providing for fair housing throughout our nation. I sincerely hope that the Supreme Court will make the right decision in this case by affirming that the Fair Housing Act unequivocally prohibits actions that have the effect of disproportionately denying housing to marginalized communities,” Waters said Friday.

“Failure to do so would be contrary to congressional intent; it would overturn decades of major progress in fair housing; and would be particularly devastating for minority individuals and communities,” she added.

Waters said unchecked discriminatory housing practices, such as subprime lending to minority communities, in the time leading up to the mortgage crisis continue to prevent working class families from joining the middle class.

“The disparate impact standard under the Fair Housing Act has been effectively used for decades to weed out practices that create barriers to housing for people on the basis of factors like race, color, religion and gender,” she said.

Given her previous problems in the socialization/nationalize arena, we are both doubtful that Rep. Waters wasn’t acting as a mere sock puppet for the guiding hand of a professional PR hack. Then again, we could be wrong. Either way, we’re rooting for the visiting team in the disparate impact game being played before the SCOTUS.

Surprisingly, there were no anonymous emails threatening my life or worse, regulatory retaliation. Perhaps with the spring thaw, the wombats and trolls will again be out in force.

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