The US government's debts have ballooned so badly the National Debt Clock in New York has run out of digits to record the spiralling figure.
The digital counter marks the national debt level, but when that passed the $10 trillion point last month, the sign could not display the full amount.
In 1942, German intelligence officers rounded up skilled Jewish prisoners and launched Operation Bernhardt, a clever scheme designed to counterfeit hundreds of millions of dollars worth of British Pounds and destroy the British economy by flooding it with counterfeit money. Located in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp, Operation Bernhardt was, even by modern standards, a runaway success that resulted in the creation of forged bank notes worth 132 million British Pounds.
Facing a lawsuit over deceptive mortgage practices, Bank of America has agreed to modify tens of thousands of loans to keep people in Illinois, Washington and nine other states from losing their homes, the Illinois attorney general's office said Sunday.
The current economic crisis demands that we understand John McCain's attitudes about economic oversight and corporate influence in federal regulation. Nothing illustrates the danger of his approach more clearly than his central role in the savings and loan scandal of the late '80s and early '90s.
John McCain was accused of improperly aiding his political patron, Charles Keating, chairman of the Lincoln Savings and Loan Association. The bipartisan Senate Ethics Committee launched investigations and formally reprimanded Senator McCain for his role in the scandal -- the first such Senator to receive a major party nomination for president.
That includes, as the New York Post pointed out, millions in tax breaks and related pork for kids' wooden arrows, Puerto Rican rum producers, auto race tracks, and corporations operating in American Samoa. (The likely explanation for the latter: StarKist has a large tuna-canning operation in American Samoa. And StarKist's parent company happens to be located in the district of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.)
Slight shifts in the property value of a home can cause a complete failure of the promise to pay the debt on a mortgage, simply because the benefits of paying are no longer the same. If you owe more on the mortgage than your property is worth, an oft-chosen solution is to just walk away from it, especially if it was easy to get into, with no down, with little credit, and nothing but a bad credit report to lose.
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