The Monster - by Michael Hudson

Mike Hudson on The Young Turks  

The Monster -  How a Gang of Predatory Lenders and Wall Street Bankers  Fleeced America and created a Global Financial Crisis 

Times Books  2010  

"Magnificently and heartbreakingly told. . . . [Hudson] shows vividly that really filthy, face-to-face fraud and hard-sell bullying . . . brought the economy down around our ears."—The Boston Globe
In this page-turning, true-crime exposé, award-winning reporter Michael W. Hudson reveals the story of the rise and fall of the biggest subprime lender and Wall Street's biggest patron of subprime: Ameriquest and Lehman Brothers. They did more than any other institutions to produce the biggest financial scandal in American history.
It's a tale populated by a remarkable cast of characters: a shadowy billionaire who created the subprime industry out of the ashes of the 1980s S&L scandal; insatiable Wall Street executives; ensnared home owners; investigators who tried to expose the fraud; politicians who turned a blind eye; and, most of all, the drug-snorting, high-living salesman who tell all about the money they made, the lies they told, the deals they closed.
Provocative and gripping, The Monster is a searing look at the bottom-feeding fraud and top-down greed that fueled the financial collapse.

Avg 4.5 stars on scale of 1-5 

5.0 out of 5 stars Do I get angry, or just cry?September 15, 2012
This is such an important work, because it explains the predatory mortgage business on a completely human level. These financial sociopaths (particularly Roland Arnall of Ameriquest) were able to flourish by preying on the weakest in our society, all the while buying goodwill wherever they went. Politicians, regulators, celebrities, even those who work on behalf of the poor were won over by Arnall's charm, and charity, and deceit. He could have been stopped before he hurt so many thousands of people, but he wasn't. He was made Ambassador to the Netherlands. And a billionaire.

Example after example is given of the confused victims (usually elderly, sick, financially inexperienced, and above all, trusting) whose lives are utterly destroyed by a toxic mixture of fraud, greed, and the absence of anything remotely resembling a conscience.

The Monster is a devastating and heartbreaking account of a business that worships only money, respects only money, and will do anything to get it.

IntriguingFebruary 3, 2012
A gripping epic that dives into just how deeply human greed and lust for power can force something as huge as the world's financial system into free fall. A must read for anyone who wants to know what was going on behind the scenes as the sub prime mortgage debacle slowly unfolded.

 I haven't even read it....January 3, 2012
As a lending veteran of 20 years and a published author, the second I saw that the primary culprits were Lehman and Ameriquest (don't forget Bear-Stearns) in the review I knew the author was right-on. Most blame Fannie/Freddie/CRA but the prime movers were Lehman, Bear-Stearns and Countrywide....

33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Demonstrates that the major subprime lenders engaged in massive fraud
The author has done an excellent job in demonstrating that the major subprime lenders,the great majority being concentrated in or near Orange County ,California,such as R Arnall's Ameriquest and A Mazilo's Countrywide,were engaged in a pattern ,repeated over and over again thousands of times,of deliberate misrepresentation,forgery and fraud.The goal was to misinform...
Published on October 31, 2010 by Michael Emmett Brady

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