Welcome to the weekly roundup of great articles, facts and figures. These are the weekly finds that made our eyes pop.
Pathetic Payroll Tax Quotes
When the Senate failed to pass a payroll tax, employee side, extension, some of the quotes are hilarious in a pathetic sort of way. The extension failed because the GOP refuses to tax millionaires, yet says this about reducing FICA contributions of lower income Americans:
When are we going to admit that we are broke?
Right, America is broke, the GOP makes sure to protect millionaires from paying taxes at all costs. Why stop now? The payroll tax actually funds social security, so the name payroll tax, as in most political tricks, is misleading. This is the amount you contribute to your social security, you know, the one under attack to be dismantled?
No wonder Congress has a 9% approval rating. But clearly elected officials could care less that America finds them corrupt and disgusting.
Portugal Raids Pensions for the Banks
The Telegraph is reporting yet another take from the middle class, give to the rich action:
Portugal has raided €5.6bn (£4.8bn) of pension fund assets in a controversial scramble to meet its deficit targets.
MF Global Funds Transferred Abroad
Regulators investigating the collapse of MF Global have determined that the firm combined money between securities and futures accounts owned by customers, and transferred funds outside the country to at least one entity.
Your Cell Phone is Spying On You
Surprise, surprise. The latest is software by Carrier IQ that monitors smartphones, collects data and ships it on back to the carrier. I've got news for you, they all are spying on you to the point how much possibly be all of this privacy intrusion data even be worth?
That's right, your cable company is profiling you, beaming targeted advertising into your home, Visa and Mastercard are defining who you are by purchases, behavior. Credit companies also are profiling you and online, you're tracked better than any bloodhound dog ever possibly could.
Massachusetts Sues 5 Banks Over Mortgage Fraud
Someone is doing something at least:
The banks named in the suit — Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage — the Massachusetts action diminishes the likelihood of a comprehensive settlement between the banks and federal and state officials to resolve foreclosure improprieties.
Also named as a defendant in the Massachusetts suit was the electronic mortgage registry known as MERS, an entity set up by lenders to speed property transfers by circumventing local land recording officials.
Of course GMAC immediately retaliated by refusing to buy any home loans in Massachusetts.
A spokeswoman for GMAC's parent, Ally Financial Inc., said GMAC will no longer buy loans that originated with other lenders and mortgage brokers in Massachusetts, but will honor all commitments made through Monday. She said GMAC will also continue to loan money to individual homeowners in the state, but that accounts for a small percentage of its business.
Germany, Pressure's On
Germany is being pressured to embrace Eurobonds. Thing is, Germany is the economically strong country and would be footing the bill by combining sovereign debt.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel's uncompromising stance on Europe's financial crisis faced mounting criticism on Saturday as senior political figures urged her to reconsider her rejection of eurobonds.
"One cannot categorically rule out resorting to eurobonds. They could become vital," European Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger said in an interview with Die Welt.
In an article entitled "How much longer will Merkel resist the pressure?" the newspaper said Oettinger, who belongs to Merkel's party, was expressing an opinion shared by most in the eurozone.
Merkel has adopted a hard line against the introduction of eurobonds, arguing that Germany -- Europe's largest economy and the state with the lowest borrowing costs -- would pick up the tab if eurozone debt were pooled.
Cops Refuse to Evict a 103 year old woman
Gee, they got a heart:
A Deutsche Bank branch in Atlanta had requested the eviction of Vita Lee, a 103-year-old Atlanta woman, and her 83-year-old daughter. Both were terrified of being removed from their home of 53 years and had no idea where they’d go next.
But when the movers hired by the bank and police were dispatched to evict the two women, they had a change of heart.
Debt Dies With You
No surprise, evil debt collectors are trying to collect on debt of the decreased, harassing windows, threats. Folks, if someone dies and the debt is in their name only, that's it! The debt goes with them to the grave. You cannot collect on a dead person, no matter how much out of control debt collectors say otherwise.
After Linda Long's husband died of colon cancer last year, the phone calls poured in.
The 68-year-old retired office worker says she got as many as 10 calls a day from a debt-collection firm asking for $16,651.52 that her husband, Millard, had racked up on a Bank of America Corp. credit card.
Can Facebook, Twitter, Linked In Get You a Job?
I find this use of Zerohedge as hidden advertising. The claim is social media can help get you a job. Really? Seems yet another middleman advertising plant, but the thing to note, the group claiming social networking helps you find a job are profiling you, including behavior, turning the job hunt into some sort of database keyword pigeon holing nightmare via the useless HR hatchet group, Jobvite. Hello employers, can you be bothered to read an applicant's resume these days?