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Bruce Marks, Self-Described "Banking Terrorist"

Posted on May 26 2009 1:59 pm
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Although the Left blames the deepening recession on capitalism and laissez-faire, research suggests left-wing activist groups played a significant role in the weakening of mortgage lending standards that caused the now-deflating housing bubble.

ACORN, the Greenlining Institute, the National Council of La Raza, and the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America (NACA) are among the thuggish “community organizing” nonprofits that bullied banks to make bad loans.

NACA, founded and run by self-described “banking terrorist” Bruce Marks, a former labor-union organizer, employs many of the same aggressive direct action techniques that ACORN uses.

NACA, according to the Wall Street Journal, is

one of the loudest scourges of the banking industry in the post-bubble economy. It salts its Web site with photos of executives it accuses of standing in the way of helping homeowners — emblazoning “Predator” across their photos, picturing their homes and sometimes including home phone numbers. In February, NACA…protested at the home of a mortgage investor by scattering furniture on his lawn, to give him a taste of what it feels like to be evicted.

In the 1990s, Mr. Marks leaked details of a banker’s divorce to the press and organized a protest at the school of another banker’s child… “We have to terrorize these bankers,” Mr. Marks says.

Though some bankers privately deplore his tactics, Mr. Marks is a growing influence in the lending industry…NACA has signed agreements with the four largest U.S. mortgage lenders — Bank of America, Wells Fargo & Co., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. — in which they agree to work with his counselors on a regular basis to try to arrange lower payments for struggling borrowers. NACA has made powerful political friends, such as House majority whip James Clyburn of South Carolina, and it receives federal money to counsel homeowners. […]

David Hogberg observed in Capital Research Center’s Organization Trends that NACA routinely threatens public relations campaigns against banks unless they hand over millions of dollars to fund NACA programs.

Even some leaders of the minority groups NACA is supposedly trying to help, detest Marks and his obnoxious tactics. Former Massachusetts state Sen. Dianne Wilkerson, a black Democrat, said Marks is “the kind of person who would throw a Molotov cocktail and then run in with a extinguisher and declare himself a hero for putting out the fire.”

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