Another inquiry another submission

Well, there are more inquiries into financial institutions than we can shake the veritable stick at – if you’re interested feel free to add your voice to the Scrutiny of Financial Advice Inquiry which is open for submissions until 5 December 2014.  My submission will be under g) any related matters; I feel the need to raise this matter in any forum where it can be heard.  It’s not right that we can lose everything because people in the know abuse the system.  Or maybe that Facebook meme doing the rounds at the moment is right – the system isn’t broken, it’s working perfectly well for the people it was designed to protect and serve … sounds about right – but as you know, I am no cynic Smile with tongue out Who me?Winking smile.

I have a plan that seems to be coming together quite nicely at the moment too – I will start blogging about it once I know whether it is ‘doable’ – there is some argument whether it is even possible.  But I have this thing about people using the word impossible – and I just have to pick away at it to see whether I can make it work or not.  Never walk away from anything until you have all the facts is my motto (closely followed by the mantra ‘everybody lies’ and ‘trust no-one’ … so you can imagine the fun place my head is in right now hahaha Surprised smile).

As I’m still recovering from some mystery illness (required the MOTH to leave work to rescue me … that’s serious, but my mum knew it was dire when I didn’t even want chocolate – talk about being at death’s door!!!) I wont’ keep blathering on here (plenty of time for my verbosity to bore you LOL).  Yesterday I got my final results for first semester too – rather chuffed to get a letter from the uni congratulating me on my awesome grades Nerd smile but sadly I can’t even party* Surprised smile.  Just as well the silly season is almost upon us – I should get some celebrating in before it’s old news Winking smile.

Anyway, I’ll leave you with this song … in many ways it reflects how I feel about some things in life these days but mostly it’s just a whole lotta fun Smile with tongue out

In the meantime do yourself a favour … take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

*will have to be content with a memory of a celebratory drink had earlier hahaha … but it’s all good

Regrouping, rethinking, and figuring out what’s what

So I survived exams (yay me) but no results yet (hey, I’m not impatient, I have not been stalking My Grades on the uni website … not me Embarrassed smile Smile with tongue out).  I already have the info for the Summer Semester unit I’m doing in January, have ordered text book and look like I’m set to go. Smile

So now I’m trying to get on top of the banking stuff – and I have to confess I’m a little bit behind now – the cat almost died on Monday and it threw me in a spin.  Not only getting him to the vet and the realisation that the day will come when he shuffles off this mortal coil Crying face but also generally trying to keep it all together enough to get on top of the very.much.neglected housework.  But I’m catching up so here I am … back at trying to piece this puzzle together.

Currently I’m talking to a few people who are at varying stages of their banking scam journey – some have valiantly begun to fight back despite the bailiff being days away from evicting them and others have only just started their fight.

What this broad spectrum of bank* customers shows me is that there is no simple “one size fits all” solution you can just hand out like lollies on Halloween.  For example, someone who has only just started realising that the bank isn’t playing fair during the renegotiation process and is creating financial difficulties for them can rely on equitable estoppel to stop the escalation of the problem.  Whereas someone who has had a dodgy FOS ruling followed by a dodgy Summary Judgment will have to use a different approach.

The problem for bank customers is that the wording of the contract clearly states that the bank can withdraw funding at any time – they have all the power in the world – at least according to the wording of the contract.   I’m pretty sure that this is the reason so many people walk away without a fight and without questioning whether the bank is actually wrong.  Surely the bank wouldn’t break the law and rely on dodgy clauses to ensure customers who have been screwed by employees don’t fight back in court?

Yes, I know, I am cynical – but there is something inherently wrong with these contracts – they should be illegal imho – they give the banks TOTAL control; the customer has no rights – despite what their feel-good Code of Banking Practice might say.  The terms of the contract absolutely show the lack of regard banks have for their customers.  Why else would they have a clause that gives them the right to cancel the contract without cause?  (you don’t actually have to be in default – hey, if the mood strikes them you’re up you.know.what.creek without a paddle Surprised smile).

Most people do not know the law, they are vaguely aware that ignorance of the law is no excuse but they trust that the people they are dealing with wouldn’t do anything to ruin them financially – and that is even more true when they deal with their bank.  And the banks know it and play on it.

For those bright sparks that still claim that banks make a loss on these loans and that they would never, ever do this on purpose – here’s the thing.  IF the banks actually lost money, if this cut into their profits THEN they would hunt down the employees that were bodgying up loans, they would make sure their system of checks and balances worked; in short – they would make damned sure there was not a single customer at risk from these dodgy deals.  But that is not what we are seeing.  Even the Financial Sector Union is saying that the carrot and stick approach to paying bank employees is dangerous (the carrot being the bonuses paid for ‘meeting sales targets’ – loans and the stick being getting the sack for failing to meet sales targets i.e. not talking enough customers into getting loans).  The banks wouldn’t wear it unless there was money in it for them ….

Anyway – that’s enough of a rant for today, research awaits this little black duck Winking smile but I’ll leave you with this song … just because I can hehe

Anyway – do yourself a favour, take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

*all banks represented here Sad smile

the video is Pink Floyd – Money Open-mouthed smile

And it’s 3 down; 1 to go

I’m feeling quite wrecked atm – all due to exams.  The most positive thing I can say about the experience is that I have learned to approach some of my tasks a little bit differently next semester!  But I guess that’s what this learning lark is all about – learning, even learning how to get better at learning!

So I’ve done 3 exams with the final one not until next Wednesday – and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.  It’s the unit I feel most confident about and this also adds to the debate about good/bad thing.  I’m confident I know it and will not get overly stressed but then I worry I might be a tad over-confident.

I’m a bit of an expert on this overconfidence bit … I remember well when I used to be absolutely convinced that we’d win in court because we had all the evidence, back in the days when I was naive enough to believe that courts were the place to go for justice … yeah, that worked out great for us Smile with tongue out

But I’m one exam shy of being 1/6 of the way through my degree and I think I’m already getting a handle on this legal process thing.  There were days when I struggled with the Contracts unit – not because it was hard, but because some basic, very basic, truths about what happened to us were exposed.  Same with Torts – ah the joy of Torts Open-mouthed smile … how I wish I’d been acquainted with that little beauty about 6 years ago, or even a couple of years ago.  Oh well, maybe others will actually benefit from my steep learning curve soonish Winking smile

That Contracts report I thought about publishing … just need to figure out how I can polish it up a bit (since it was ‘tweaked’ for a particular audience for the assignment) or if I need to write a new one using similar concepts, or maybe just publish it here as is hahaha Smile with tongue out.  The only negative comment on it was that it was a little bit emotive … not bad considering that I get overly emotional discussing this bank fraud stuff that is now, finally, making the news.  It was a pretty good grade (especially considering the emotive language which I know isn’t very acamademical Who me?).  As to the writing I was going to be doing over the break – I may set myself an interesting topic and see if I can do a well-researched article on my pet subject – depending on which way I want to tweak it of-course!

There’s a few (acamademical-type) tasks I’ve set myself for the break … but somewhere I will have to find time to improve on my calligraphy … sadly I cannot blame my over-dependence on the computer for writing missives, nor can I say it’s because I left school a while back and haven’t had to write as much.  Truth be told, my handwriting has always been, erm, crap; but now with really.important.law exams I think I need to get it straightened out a bit … maybe even get some Brownie points with the poor sods that have to decipher it all Surprised smile.  (and yes, it is somewhat embarrassing to have handwriting that’s, well, erm, crap).  I wasn’t so worried about it for the other degree (I have no idea why not – a tad embarrassed yes, but not this wholly ashamed thing I have going atm hahaha).

Here’s some of the light reading I have ahead of me … just to get into the swing of things (I suspect this is week 1)

light holiday readingAnyway, I only thought I’d say hello, and that I’m still working ‘the plan’ – and it’s looking pretty good atm, even though I’m still hoping to write about all this stuff the banks are doing as a history thing – it’s not looking good at this point in time.  At least not with the government still ignoring calls for a Royal Commission and still supporting their bankster mates.

Oh well, that’s me done for the day – I’d forgotten about how exhausting the post-exam post-mortem routine can be …

So here’s a tune to cheer me up … hope you like it too Smile  [Think about it hahaha – it’s a weird kinda journey, this thing called life – you really never know what’s around the corner.  If you’d told me 8 years ago I was gonna go to law school … pffftttt you’re crazy!  And here I am, still not sure I believe in fate – but I’ll go with it for now Winking smile )

and to avoid your own Waterloo … do yourselves a favour – take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

Well that was quick … eeeekkkk

They (whoever they actually are) say that time flies when you’re having fun …. well, I must be having an awful lot of fun with this studying lark Surprised smile.  I can’t believe that in a couple of weeks I’ll be doing exams and that’s the end of my first semester studying law.  It’s been an amazing journey so far – and reading the legal gobbledygook isn’t anywhere near so … mind-numbingly awful hahaha Smile with tongue out

If I get a good result on my Contracts research essay I might see if I can get it published (hey, if that fails I’ll just ‘publish’ on here muahaha Devil).  I got a really good result for the presentation I had to do for it.  The assignment was on implied terms – good faith; basically it took the form of a report to the Australian Law Reform Commission and recommended changes to the law.

Naturally my assignment took the angle that banks have obviously abandoned all pretence of acting in good faith and therefore good faith should become an express term in lending contracts (that would make them contracts of utmost good faith … lie on application forms then bank employees!)  and all States should adopt legislation similar to the Contracts Review Act 1980 (NSW) to give customers a chance to get a fair hearing.

I can’t believe how much case law exists where judges call out banks on their abrogation of good faith – the banks don’t even pretend they have to act in good faith in any of their dealings.   When we were fighting this thing we were told it didn’t happen, what happened to us was an aberration, that banks simply did not act this way.  Even in 2009 when we showed up in court there was an expansive body of case law that totally, absolutely showed banks regularly act this way.  Hopefully I got the balance right (I went across the spectrum to prove banks/lenders do not act in good faith – ever – if it’s a conflict between profit and good faith …. well, let’s say good faith is dead in the water eh?)

Really wasn’t sure if I wanted to share the graduation photo (not a fan of sharing photos online at the best of times … but hey, I’m well covered at least and Smart-Arse Ted is a lil cutie right?) but I did work hard for the degree (I suspect that one will be a walk in the park compared to this one – although I’ve enjoyed this semester more than stressed out about it, might be a good sign?)  So hope you forgive me for sharing the photo Winking smile *

graduation                 Teddy's new mate

I added the photo of Smart-Arse Ted with his best mate Biker Ted just because I could (and those two look so adorable together hahaha)

 

I do have to confess to being somewhat surprised about how I still feel about all this stuff that has happened to me.  I just assumed that once we settled with the bank that I’d feel better; then it was ‘when I graduate’ … and nope, I still feel totally crap.  The smile in the photo is so obviously fake it is terrifying (to me at any rate …).  This is leaving me wondering if I’ll ever know how to feel ‘good’ again.  There is no-one who could accuse me of not doing enough to change my situation, no-one can say I’ve done nothing to ‘fix’ the hurt the unmentionable thing inflicted on me.  Exactly how much do you have to do to make the booboo stop hurting?

When Robin Williams died a few people made comments about what a cowardly act it was – and I know it wasn’t, and I know that not everybody who faces problems can keep on going.  While I know I’m pretty thick-skinned these days and don’t consider myself at risk – I also worry that not enough is being done to help people caught in this horrendous situation.   And for some, the burden of simply staying alive is too great.  That is probably the thing that pisses me off most of all – no-one who can do anything to help is actually bothering … they just can’t be arsed to tighten the regulations and take the banks to task.

The politicians have washed their hands of it (and why wouldn’t they when the bankster lobby is so rich and powerful and always ready with financial rewards for compliant politicians who look the other way).  The despair out there is overwhelming … and a part of me resents the fact that there isn’t anyone willing to help.  The lawyers want to be paid up front (if burnt customers had the money up front they would have paid the slimy banksters FFS), the judges either use the doctrine of precedent to say their hands are tied or the particular case falls through the cracks because neither common law nor legislation has considered the massive fraud undertaken by corrupt corporations who know how to manipulate existing laws.

The ‘reasonableness’ of the law pisses me off – when it’s so obviously manipulated to make fraud legal; the refrain ‘but you signed the contract’ makes my blood boil – who the fuck in their right mind would have signed a contract they knew was based on lies told by the other party?  Another more.than.an.annoyance is the assertion by some judges that there is no disparity in the power of the contracting parties.   When one party is a multi-billion dollar corporation with in-house lawyers who have massive experience destroying customers in court and the other is a customer who probably has never met a lawyer, never mind the total lack of any basic understanding of law – that seems like a great big fucking disparity to me but what do I know?  I’m just someone who got done by the law.

If the law is so simple to understand – why do you need a degree to understand it?  Why do you need formal training post graduation to teach you how to be a lawyer?  If it’s so bloody easy (and it is according to the bright souls who say bank customers should know the law as it relates to their loan contract) then why do you need lawyers at all?

I submit that this is a crock of shit – ordinary bank customers do not have the same legal knowledge as the lenders, bank customers also suffer the greatest disadvantage of all – they suffer from the delusion that banks deal in good faith – they trust that the bank will not put them in danger of financial ruin.  And it’s about time the conversation in Australia got around to that.

Anyway, that’s my rant for now – it’s head down bum up as I try to remember all this stuff for exams.  Anyhow, do yourselves a favour …. take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

 

 

*(I was thinking of Photoshopping my face … I reckon I would look good as Elle hahahaha – but then I am a firm believer in what you see is what you get … and that inane smile – it’s either that or the dour face and as this is the face I was born with …. pffffttttt)

So much fraud … so little time to sort it all

Apologies for my lack of postings – finally had my graduation (yay me) and family celebration and kind of lost 4 days of precious study time.  Just as well that was the week we had no lectures and tutorials eh?  And since then it’s been nothing but trying to stay on top of weekly readings, lectures, tutorials and juggling 7 assignments which all fall due around the same time; oh, and still having people who are lost and abused in the system who just need someone to talk to about what’s going on in their life/case (yes, the two are very much the same thing which is just … sad really).

Now you’d think that being snowed under with assignments (some epics like the 3500 word report into implied terms of good faith) and all the other stuff happening in my life that I would prioritise my time differently.  I say that only because I’ve been ‘advised’ to allocate my time differently – mostly on account of no-one actually paying me for all the time I put in.  But I kind of see things in a different light.

After all, when we were going through this I had no-one to talk to, that meant that when I freaked out I totally freaked out – every little problem seemed insurmountable, and like Topsy it just growed.   And when that happens you not only lose a little bit of your mind (okay – a lot) but more importantly, you lose your ability to think clearly and help yourself.

Then there’s also that little factoid that the people who contact me because they need someone to talk to, the ones who have no real support network – they are the reason I’m now studying law.  I still get depressed that the only help I can be to them is emotional support and the voice of experience that assures them “you can survive this – no matter what the outcome, you can survive it”  (perhaps a lot worse for wear and that cynical dark side takes some getting used to – but it is survivable).   They need a lawyer and they get me … it isn’t fair.

Although I am only in week 9 of my degree I do know one thing – there is so much I don’t know and yet I still know so much more than I did when all this started.  I know that for my assignments I find a lot more cases pre-2008 that would have supported our defence.  And even though I am quite some time off learning about court procedure I also understand that the way our case was handled doomed us to lose from the start (okay, this last bit I didn’t learn at uni – that was from WALPCC who explained what gave the bank their win at Summary Judgment).  That is probably the most bitter pill to swallow.  I’m in week 9 and I understand the fundamental issues …

The Master did not in fact err in his ruling (so maybe not the evil Master from Dr Who?) – so perhaps my overly negative feelings towards him are not totally justified.  But given the context of how my overall opinion was formed …  My perception of him wasn’t just based on his ruling – there were representations made to me about his character.  (I still have people tell me things about him – usually from those who have also been on the wrong side of his rulings – and yes, that must be taken into account).  So now I’m left confused as to whether he is or is not a bankster puppet – I assume he isn’t because all the evidence points to his ruling being correct.  I guess this is the reason I always add that Summary Judgement must be removed from lending litigation because there is too much proof now that evidence is withheld, and judges can only decide on what is there.  It’s depressing really.

It makes me cynical enough that when people talk to me and tell me their stories I hear things that strike me as being odd.  I’m assuming that that probably creates some annoyance for those who are only now discovering that their trust was misplaced – for me to then ask them to look out for more acts of utmost bad faith seems overly burdensome.  But a lack of trust does that.

My lack of trust also means I don’t trust myself – so I second guess myself and when I talk to others I really have to remember to tell them that what happened in our case may not be applicable in theirs.  That just because I sound convincing when I say “banks do x, y, z” that this may not necessarily be true in their case – so to look into the issue I’ve raised – but to be wary of seeing something that isn’t there.

We were screwed over by numerous people along the way – right from when I first started looking into this grand plan of mine.  I somehow had remained so naive that I assumed when you pay someone for advice that they wouldn’t set you up to fail (long story).  No matter where we turned – bad advice piled on top of bad advice and the facts that we were never made aware of so that we could make good decisions ended up sinking us.  We paid a lot of money to get totally screwed ….

The people who are desperate enough to contact me through the blog have also paid a lot of money to a lot of people just to get screwed.  Professionals have let them down, trust has been broken.  And it leaves me worried that if something I say is misheard or misconstrued that they will again be let down.   Knowing the fallout from this fight makes me acutely aware that this is not a game, and I take my responsibility to those who choose to connect with me very seriously.  All I can offer is emotional support and some handy hints on where to find some legal knowledge (the Austlii database is pretty good and the websites for the courts are a good start).

What I really need is a list of lawyers who are prepared to take on a lender; and considering how I got the idea that I needed a law degree I don’t really see the legal profession in WA welcoming me with open arms when I am done.  I never considered becoming a practicing lawyer, I always wanted to write about our collective experiences as a qualified authority.  Somehow I had assumed that by the time I have completed my degree that this sorry state of affairs would be at an end.

But the government is fighting calls for a Royal Commission into this fraud – as a matter of fact they are easing the pitiful restrictions they placed on the banks.  Sadly, I think I now have to consider the possibility that people are still going to be engaged in this fight for years to come and people totally unable to defend themselves in court will be self-representing litigants – so much for equal access to the courts – justice denied for want of being able to find a lawyer.  The thought that I might be that lawyer one day … maybe with some more studying under my belt my confidence will return?

Anyway – that’s my rant for today – I wish I could be more help to people who are forced into litigation with their bank.  But it is what it is … and maybe by letting people talk to someone who has ‘been there, done that’ helps enough for them to get a break from the overwhelming emotions that overtake us in times of crisis.

Take care out there in banksterland peeps Winking smile

PS: For those of you interested in a Royal Commission into this bank fraud please sign this petition.

There are a number of websites set up by others who also have first-hand experience of bank fraud (there’s more if you want to Google):

Judges with a sense of humour

My last post was a bit … erm … well, in my defence, I have heard a lot of stories from fellow bank customers taken down by their respective banks with the help of the legal profession (and then there’s my personal experience re Summary Judgement on top).  This knowledge colours my world and I struggle daily with the conflict between giving the legal profession the benefit of the doubt and understanding that there are legal professionals who simply shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near a court, or clients or well – have anything to do with justice and truth (since they seem to have a definite lack of understanding of both).

One thing I have noticed, and it has troubled me somewhat, is that I am experiencing anxiety attacks these days – and I mean full on anxiety attacks not just ‘feeling bad’.  And it’s all to do with studying law  – I’m in week 7 and working on a way to work through this.  The thing is, when I read about what judges say the law is (should find the quotes but well, I do have more assignments due Smile with tongue out so yeah, won’t be doing that just now) and that the law is all about justice … still waiting for justice over here Your Honour Sad smile.  Then in more than one unit we invariably cover some WA case or other and there it is – the name of a judge I know from either my own case or someone I’ve met in person.

It’s really weird, because everything happens in an instant and throws me in a loop.  I’ll be right into reading the required materials, you know, just trying to do my best to absorb all that knowledge, figure out what the rule of law is and how it relates to the unit materials and generally minding my own business.  Then I’ll see it – it’ll be something innocuous like “Buss J at 24 in some.case.name.or.other said/argued/articulated/whatever”  …. and my world goes bang.  The old heart starts skipping beats (and the ones it remembers to do are so bloody loud it sounds like bombs going off in my brain), my eyes go wobbly, my stomach lurches and my brain just goes “shit”.

And it’s not like Justice Buss did anything to me … he just happened to have a seat on the bench at our appeal* – and it’s only recently that I understood that our appeal was always doomed to fail.  I’m now confused as to why our appeal was actually heard … but despite failing it was through the whole process that I discovered so much about what the bank did.  So still glad I went through it … in that perverse ‘turning lemons into lemonade’ kind of justifying crap outcomes thing.

It was through the Stay of Execution process that I came to respect Justice Newnes, and trusted him enough to sue the bank for damages.  When I see his name in readings I have the same reaction despite having positive regard for his judgement.

I must confess that I am surprised at my reactions and it is affecting my thought process (I’m pretty sure about that – but it could also be the endless barking of the next door neighbour’s dogs and/or the horrendous noise the renovations the other neighbour is indulging in … should start an anti-renovations blog hahaha).  It’s a complication I hadn’t made allowances for – I mean I knew that getting comfortable with the language would take some doing (the readings are easier these days so maybe it’s starting to come together?).  I also knew that learning to ‘write legal’ was something I needed to give time (sadly my first legal essay was a dud – get marks back on Monday and really don’t want to know … le sigh).

It’s one thing understanding the legal principles we are taught, writing it all up is something else, but trying to get over the physical reactions I’m having because of my experience is something different again.  There are a lot of people like me who end up in law school trying to get to a new understanding and use that to help others in the way we were never helped.  For the average law student this isn’t an issue – while all law students probably feel a ‘normal’ level of anxiety about their studies – this is something extra.

I already had problems because even though Ps get degrees I really like getting HDs – and if I’m going to pay the money to study I may as well get the best grades I can – so I’m putting a lot of pressure on myself to ‘get it right’.  I think this totally backfired on said essay as I really lost the plot … I want to write an email to the lecturer begging his forgiveness for making him read the diatribe hahaha.

Anyway, I’m getting back into mediation hoping this will help me get over all the injustice crap and keep an open mind.  And, despite my overwhelming cynicism, I do still try to give people the benefit of the doubt.  As I read more court transcripts and judgements I am starting to think I can discern personal quirks of judges come through (there’s not but I have a fine imagination).

I’ve been asked when I’ll be a lawyer … and I’m still not sure that’s where I want to end up (I’m also pretty sure they wouldn’t want me in their ranks hahahahahahaha).  One of the things that has always had me thinking I don’t want to be a practicing lawyer is that I know I have problems speaking in public and more importantly – my personal experience in court might make me a liability to any client I may have (what if I lost the plot and called my ‘learned friend’ an “expletive deleted” gosh darned “expletive deleted”? – that would not do my client any good at all).  Oh well, there’s time to get over the crap eh?  We’ll see what happens – no point stressing about that right now Smile with tongue out (yes, I’m a worry wart … must get over that).

Anyhoo … here’s a quote that cheered me up no end this morning … looking forward to reading some more words of wisdom today – hopefully more along these lines and less super duper boringly technical stuff haha Just kidding

GLEESON CJ: The deceased appears to have maintained simultaneous domestic establishments with all three women and their respective children. In terms of division of his time he appears to have given preference to Margaret Green, but it seems that he spent two nights a week, regularly, with the respondent and, at least according to her evidence, gave what she regarded as a plausible explanation of his absences. Presumably, over a number of years, he managed to achieve the same result with the other women. This is consistent with his apparent success as a used car salesman.

-Green v Green (1989) 17 NSWLR 343 at 346.

While I voluntarily get my nose back to that grindstone do yourselves a favour – take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

*easy answer

I found the quote on the SurviveLaw website … I need all the help I can get :)

The legal system and the banks

… where to now?

I forgot to put up these great links to interviews about the massive fraud perpetrated by Australian banks – sorry ‘bout that (I can only blame being busy on studies).  This thing is gaining ground and you have to wonder just how long the banks can keep indulging in their passion for weasel words to keep getting away with committing crimes (it’s not just one type of crime – there’s quite a variety – well, they do say variety is the spice of life Smile with tongue out )

Anyway – here’s the links

There’s a lot happening out there and I talk to a lot of people who are concerned about the judges hearing bank cases especially the judges who used to represent the banks as lawyers.  Now there’s a bit of a conflict of interest that should mean judges recuse themselves from some hearings altogether – perhaps that is too radically common sense for contemplation?

Anyway, this week at uni we’re covering judges and how they make decisions in one unit, in another we looked at suing lawyers for incompetence (okay, so technically we looked at negligence but well, in my experience incompetence is pretty much the same as negligence and I used to prefer thinking some lawyers are just stupid rather than corrupt – oh dear, still trying to give people the benefit of the doubt … le sigh Sad smile).   This got me thinking that I should maybe do a post about a client who found out some disturbing things about the barrister and lawyer who represented them in court … but that will have to wait until tomorrow (or my earliest opportunity since there’s assignments to be worked on … just as well I love steep learning curves eh?  Smile with tongue out )

So while I think about how to write up my observation about legal professionals I’ll leave you with this video from the US – after watching I did a bit of reading about the judge and well, he doesn’t have a very good wrap online does he?  Food for thought though.

 

While I get back to studying my lil tushy off – do yourselves a favour – take care out there in banksterland Winking smile

No such thing as coincidence … or just too many people affected?

This week I was going to do a post about implied terms in contract law (or as I’ve come to think of it – the law of contract obligations) – especially since bank customers still seem to believe that banks would never grant unconscionable/dodgy loans and if they did inadvertently do so, then they’d do the right thing and fix the problem.  You know, act in good faith.  Whereas all bank actions mentioned in the Senate Report into ASIC reek of bad faith; no let me rephrase that – let’s go with ‘are criminal’ for that last one.

But this morning I got side-tracked while I was replenishing my coffee supplies (can’t run out of study juice now can we? Smile with tongue out).  I thought I’d head to the shops before the rush, so found myself in an almost empty shopping centre just before 8.  There was an older gentleman a little ahead of me and we happened to start talking – about banks of all things (you’re not really surprised though eh? Winking smile ) and it turns out that this random stranger had been stung by the bank just over 20 years ago – and all of his info also firmly fitted the dodgy bankster antics category. 

So now I’m thinking – how is it that I run into so many people who have been financially ruined by banks when they had the evidence to prove the banks had been in the wrong?  I run into these people in shopping centres, doctors’ surgeries, at the train station, randomly in cafes – anywhere where people casually talk – there they are – people like me, taken for a ride by a bank and the law didn’t give a toss.

Right from the beginning of this I was told that what happened to us was a ‘one off’ – that this can’t happen, it was an anomaly.  Yet I have met too many people who have the same story to tell – and the time span is from the early days of bank deregulation through to right now. 

Somehow I don’t think the word ‘coincidence’ does this justice – perhaps the reason I meet so many people randomly (no surprise about talking to people who specifically contact me through the blog – but strangers met in the street?) has less to do with some quirk of the universe, and much more to do with the fact that this is a problem that is far more widespread than anyone imagines.

My son has a rare disease, and while I often meet people (randomly) who also have children/partners with a relatively rare disease, the same disease doesn’t generally come up. 

The reason I mention it is because for me to meet so many people with the same bank stories might be an indication that this is not rare, an anomaly – this really is a systemic issue that the courts and the legislature have ignored for far too long.

If politicians can point out one good reason (and by golly it wants to be brilliant … just sayin’ Smile with tongue out ) why they shouldn’t step in and tweak the existing laws so that banks cannot profit from the crimes they commit (and that bank customers shouldn’t pay 100% of the price for the banks’ crimes) then I’ll drop it – but they can’t.  The politicians and courts know that there is something terribly wrong here – that justice is denied, that innocent people are being ripped off by unscrupulous banksters.  The banksters and their lobbyists keep using weasel words to give those with the power to change it a good excuse to avoid having to do anything about it – they keep saying it doesn’t happen (a lot) – there isn’t a systemic issue. 

Maybe they (those with the power to help us schmucks) have their heads so far up their behinds that they have lost the capacity to speak to ordinary people – and they haven’t quite figured out that the carnage left behind by crooked banksters is going to be noted in the annals of history as the most dismal failure to reign in crime.

Maybe they didn’t get Al Capone on the crimes he’s famous for – but get him they did.  How about doing something about the banksters?  Surely even that itty bitty GST problem can get them prosecuted? 

Oh well, my rants are unproductive – no-one gives a crap – so back to the books so I can write convincing arguments that defy the weasel word brigade and forces them to do the job they are meant to do – close the loop hole that allows the slimy banksters to keep right on stealing from Joe Public with impunity (they’re only doing it because they know no-one is going to stop them – so show them you will stop them … throw ‘em in jail every.single.one.of.them)

While I keep on trying to understand this enough to help change things … do yourself a favour – take care out there in banksterland Winking smile

What makes something ‘fishy’?

I have had cause to ask myself that very question over the last couple of weeks, following receipt of an email from Landgate that set my alarm bells ringing good and proper.

I suppose I should start at the beginning so you can follow the story properly Winking smile – when we were in Paris in March we had our passports & train tickets stolen.  Technically it wasn’t an issue – we had replacement passports within a couple of days (okay, so we do have to go back to Paris so we can actually see and do stuff other than trudging to and from the Embassy but hey, that’s another story LOL).  Even financially it wasn’t a big deal – with travellers insurance we had our costs refunded, so really, it wasn’t  a biggie. 

That is until I got home and then my paranoia was well and truly set off when a local removalist sent me a “I hear you’re moving” letter/advertisement.  Remembering the stories of people who had their properties sold out from under them because someone else ‘acquired’ their identity, and still feeling a tad vulnerable after being pickpocketed in Paris, I did the only thing I could – I registered our property title with Landgate.  So now if ever there is any activity with the title – I get an email telling me so.

Which brings me to the email from Landgate a couple of weeks ago that set my alarm bells ringing – to be honest, I hadn’t expected to hear from them again except to renew the service.  But there it was, a listing of recent activity on our title.

F…A…R…K Surprised smile

So I phoned them, but the paperwork was still en route so I had to phone back the next morning.  The next morning I was told that the mortgage had been transferred, the woman had assumed that we had just re-mortgaged and she was perplexed when I said that we hadn’t.  But it was all kosher, not a problem.

Late last week I got another email from Landmark – telling me the activity had been finalised – so this time I phoned the finance mob …

From the reaction, I’m thinking this wasn’t quite the ‘ordinary’ daily happenings, the manager who spoke to me seemed very confused that I was aware the mortgage had been moved.  And while I guess I have to accept that it was most likely an internal move – erm, you do know I’m thinking ‘onselling’ ‘securitisation’ and other dodgy things financial institutions do … right?  It wasn’t what was said, it was how it was said …. there are times when paranoia is a really, really bad thing hahaha Smile with tongue out.

Anyway – just thought I’d share the weird and ponder if it’s fishy or not … what say you?  While I get back to studying do yourselves a favour … take care out there in banksterland Winking smile

 

oh, I’m also working on another submission, that should be fun haha

The brain frizz and other fun things

I have to confess that despite feeling a bit overwhelmed at times about the reading I have to do (erm, I sometimes forget that in a couple of units the reading list is for the first three weeks and not just that week haha) – I am really enjoying this study lark Smile.  Although I am still struggling to get into a really good routine that fits in all the lectures, tutorials and extra researching I need to do, I think with just a bit of tweaking I’ll be okay.  To be honest, I now feel really slack – I have no idea how people do this with babies/toddlers in their lives, and at least one fellow student works full time and is studying full time.  Call me lazy by all means but I’m thinking of getting holiday jobs only because I’d prefer not to drive myself crazy with stress and lack of sleep … just sayin’ Nerd smile.

One of the things I am really enjoying is the challenge of figuring out the best way to handle the assessment questions – as with all things law, the way you tackle the problem is very much decided by the point of view you take.  Then again, the best lawyers consider both sides of the argument and then formulate the best case from there (and if I’m going to study the law I may as well follow the habits of the best rather than the mundane, less than average slackers who just scrape by bahahaha).

I always assumed that my experience with the legal system and the corruption that seems to flourish in regard to banking law would really hamper my learning – that I would be so cynical and anti-establishment that I would only absorb facts and points of law that support my very tainted point of view.  I’m happy to report that, although I will be drawing on my experience with the bank in all my studies, I am quite capable of distinguishing between the failures of my original defence team (and subsequent talented response of Team B which should probably be called the A Team now Winking smile  because they were really up against it) and the common law that exists to mete out justice without prejudice.

There is only one unit where we have not been given details of assessment questions but I must say, while all the assignments seem daunting today, I am a tad excited about working on them.  I’m not sure which one intrigues me most.  At this stage I think the contracts assessment holds the most promise as far as the blog is concerned … I’m pretty sure the 3500 word report into an aspect of contract law that could do with an overhaul will fit in quite nicely with the problem mortgagees face when a bank comes after them.  I guess now I have to find the quote from the politician who said that the contracts were enforceable because all that came before they were signed is irrelevant.  Not sure how he came to think that a lie told by an employee in the loan application form which lead to the existence of the loan, when a prudent and diligent banker would not approve said loan, was not relevant.  I have no idea why he would think that forged signatures were not a cause for the banksters to go to jail rather than reap the benefit of the fraud.  Then again, he is a politician who no doubt hears this bunkum from the bankster lobby all the time and totally, utterly believes it. 

Then again, a few years back customers did have a rare win against the banks … it’ll be good to find the cases and investigate from there.  Which part of contract law was applied – I know of a couple of cases where the bank manager changed the details to get the loans across the line and the banks lost their right to destroy the customer (although they still had a bloody good go).  So I wonder what’s up with that … as I say, it will be interesting to see if I can pull it all together and make a good argument to tweak the law so that misleading and deceptive conduct in the formation of the contract gets more prominence (I think that’s what I’m trying to say … Smile with tongue out).

Anyway, it’s time to hit the books again … while I give ye olde brain a rigorous workout, do yourselves a favour – take care out there in banksterland Winking smile