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TheNutcracker's Journal
TheNutcracker's Journal
June 13, 2015

Reverse Mortgage Ads May Sidestep Potential Pitfalls

JUNE 9, 2015

Confusing and inaccurate advertising about reverse mortgages persists despite recent efforts to curtail it, a new report finds, so potential borrowers should be wary.

A reverse mortgage is a loan that lets older people tap the equity they have built up in their homes. No principal or interest payments are due until the borrower dies, or moves out of the house. To qualify, a borrower must be at least 62 and have significant home equity.
The loans may make sense for some borrowers, but they are complex financial products. Lender advertising often omits or oversimplifies their potential pitfalls, according to a report this month from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. “Many consumers were very confused,” said Stacy Canan, deputy assistant director of the bureau’s Office for Older Americans. While it’s not the bureau’s position that reverse mortgages are an “unsuitable” product, she said, consumers must fully understand the risks.

For instance, while borrowers don’t have to make monthly payments on the loan, they do have to pay property taxes, homeowners’ insurance and maintenance costs. If they do not, their lender may declare a default and start foreclosure proceedings. “Advertisements that create the impression that there is no risk can thus be misleading,” the report said.

For the report, the bureau interviewed 59 homeowners who were eligible for reverse mortgages, in Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington. The bureau interviewed participants in focus groups and individually, and had them review several ads from a selection of 97 television and print pitches for reverse mortgages, before asking for their impressions.

Some consumers said they did not understand that reverse mortgages are actually loans that would have to be repaid in the future, the report found. Some said that ads claiming that reverse mortgage funds were “tax free” led them to believe they would not have to pay property taxes. Others believed reverse mortgages were a government program, and therefore safer, although the loans are made by private lenders.

The report follows bureau action earlier this year against three mortgage lenders, for implying in ads that reverse mortgages were government-affiliated. (Most reverse mortgages are insured through the Federal Housing Administration, so that borrowers continue to receive their loan funds if their lender gets into financial trouble. If their loan balance exceeds the value of their home, F.H.A. may cover the difference for the lender, when the loan is repaid).

About 52,000 reverse mortgages were endorsed by the Housing and Urban Development Department for F.H.A. insurance for the federal fiscal year ended Sept. 30, and more than 620,000 loans are currently outstanding, according to statistics provided by the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association, an industry group.

Peter H. Bell, the association’s president, said members of his group agreed to ethical standards in advertising. The standards preclude calling reverse mortgages a “government benefit,’ and require ads to fairly describe related risks.

“We share the concern that reverse mortgage advertising should be accurate and truthful and give full information about reverse mortgages,” Mr. Bell said.
He also noted that borrowers were required to undergo mortgage counseling with a government-approved counselor before they took out a reverse mortgage. “The ad is the beginning of a lengthy informational process,” he said.

Consumer advocates, however, say some mortgage counselors are better than others. “The quality of the counseling really varies,” said Sarah Bolling Mancini, a lawyer with the National Consumer Law Center. Counseling is often done over the telephone, she said, and some counselors may follow a script offering generic advice, rather than delving into an individual’s unique financial situation.
Here are some questions to consider about reverse mortgages.

■How much can I borrow using a reverse mortgage?
That depends on various factors, like your age, the value of your home and the interest rate offered by your lender. Rules aimed at reducing risk now generally limit borrowers to taking no more than 60 percent of their overall equity in the first year after taking out the loan. Also, in some cases, lenders may require that funds be set aside for the tax and insurance payments, said Ramsey Alwin, director of economic security at the National Council on Aging.

■Where can I find a H.U.D.-approved reverse mortgage counselor?
Contact information is available on H.U.D.’s website. (H.U.D.’s term for a reverse mortgage is “Home Equity Conversion Mortgage,” or H.E.C.M.)
Lower-income borrowers may qualify for free counseling, but others may be charged a fee ranging from $90 to $135, Ms. Alwin said. Sessions typically last at least 90 minutes.

■How can I make the most of reverse mortgage counseling?
Ms. Bolling Mancini suggests calling several counselors to find one that will meet face to face, and coming prepared to ask questions about your specific financial situation. “In person, the counselor can show numbers on paper,” she said. “Doing it on the phone doesn’t work as well.”
Email: yourmoneyadviser@nytimes.com


June 8, 2015

Florida child sex sting nets former workers from Disney, SeaWorld,Universal Studios & C.A.I.R.

It's in this sting where they caught the Director of C.A.I.R., also a 'youth counselor' with a license plate boasting "Invest in Children". Another was a wrestling coach like Hastert.
I know the news was full of the Hastert story, and many have problems processing such crimes from high powered people. But Disney has had a ring since the 70's, called the Disney Boys. This WaPo story covers all of this sting, including the Director of C.A.I.R. And just how horrific the acts are that they commit. One little girl was going to testify against her rapist, and she is now dead. That's in this WaPo story too.

Florida child sex sting nets former workers from Disney, SeaWorld and Universal Studios
June 4, 2015

They arrived for a week. Morning, noon and night. A total of 22 men, all seeking the same thing: sex with an underage girl.

One after another, they walked into a sparsely furnished house in Clermont, Fla., expecting to find a 10- or 12- or 14-year-old girl. Instead, they found justice.

Again and again, sheriff’s deputies burst into the living room and arrested the men for soliciting sex with a minor. Operation L & P was named after the two counties, Lake and Polk, collaborating on the undercover sting operation and timed to occur just before kids went on summer vacation. From May 18 to 25, detectives from both departments posed as underage girls or their parents in Internet chat rooms.
[Secret rooms, stuffed animals, sex toys: The home that became a child-porn studio]

It’s a tried and tested technique for ensnaring sex offenders. In this case, however, the catch was particularly alarming. Not only because authorities caught enough suspects to field a football game, but because of whom they arrested. And where they had worked.

Among those apprehended during the week-long sting was a handful of men whose jobs involved children, including three current and former theme park employees and a youth counselor.

Jeff Conrad, for example, told deputies that he had worked at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, half an hour away in Orlando. Disney told News13 in Florida that the man left Disney before the arrest.

“He traveled to have sex with a 14-year-old child,” Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd told reporters at a news conference on Tuesday. “He had access to kids because, as he said, he was a Disney employee working at Magic Kingdom.”

Two more suspects worked at Orlando theme parks, Judd said: Ryan Mayer at SeaWorld and Tomas Adames at Universal Studios. (Both companies told local media after the arrests that the men are no longer employed with them.)

[‘Nice guy’ wrestling coach had child porn, pot farm and guns at his N.J. home, police say]
Some men allegedly brought sex toys. One allegedly brought a whip. Another allegedly arrived with an extra pair of underwear, intending to claim his child victim’s panties as a trophy, according to local newspaper the Daily Commercial.

“Their communications and desires were outrageous and deviant,” Judd said. “All 22 traveled to have sex and brought outrageous tools for deviant sex.”

One of the most disturbing cases was the arrest of Ahmad Saleem, a 22-year-old community activist and youth counselor. He is the founder of Saleem Academy, an organization dedicated to empowering young Muslims. He is also the former Orlando organizer for the Council on American–Islamic Relations (CAIR). CAIR said Saleem worked for the organization only for a short time and had left before his arrest, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Saleem allegedly showed up to the sting thinking he was about to have sex with a 12-year-old. He also showed up in a vehicle with a specialty license plate reading: “Invest in Children.”

[Ten-year-old girl killed in house fire, hours before trial of her accused rapist]
On Thursday morning, the Saleem Academy Web site hinted at its founder’s fraught legal future and inner demons.


None of those arrested have filed pleas yet.

Authorities had little pity for Saleem or his fellow suspects.

“If you’re going to prey on children, the Florida sheriffs are going to come after you with a vengeance,” Judd said.

“You never know from which county we’ll be looking for you.”

Judd has gained such a reputation for pursuing sex offenders in Polk that he approached authorities in neighboring Lake County, where he hoped suspects would be less suspicious, according to the Daily Commercial.

“This was a warning and a message that we are after these types of people with a vengeance,” he said. “If we didn’t get you in this operation, you better be sure we will in the next one. We are after you. Leave our children alone.”

Operation L & P also went after prostitution in the two counties. Detectives pursued a similar strategy, posing as both prostitutes and johns online. Authorities arrested 79 people for prostitution, including a woman who was four months pregnant, two high school girls, and a husband who drove his wife to the Clermont house so she could earn the couple some money by having sex. One john arrived at the house in an Uber he had hired in Cape Coral, two hours away.

“We arrested the [Uber] driver, too,” Judd said.

Also swept up in the sting was Steven Fabrico, whom Judd showed posing in a photo with one of his two luxury cars.

“He owns two Jaguars, and he gets food stamps,” Judd said. “I guess that’s so he can save his food money to engage in prostitution.”

MORE READING: Why R. Kelly, like Bill Cosby, can’t escape sexual predator allegations
Florida deputy accused of accepting sexual favors in exchange for dropping an arrest
Recall push targets judge who said rapist didn’t ‘intend to harm’ a 3-year-old victim

Michael E. Miller is a foreign affairs reporter for The Washington Post. He writes for the Morning Mix news blog. Tweet him: @MikeMillerDC

June 5, 2015

CAIR Community Organizer: Arrested in Florida Child Sex Sting

Posted on June 5, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-06-05 at 9.40.28 AMRot in jail. (pic)

Ahmad Saleem, a former regional community organizer for the Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) whose license plate says “Invest in Children” was one of 22 persons arrested in a seven-day child-sex sting operation near Orlando.

Saleem is the founder of Saleem Academy, an organization for empowering Muslim youth, whose website was taken down shortly after his arrest.

“He’s well known as a community outreach leader interacting with teens in and around the Orlando area,” Polk County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Grady Judd said at a press conference announcing the arrests. ­“These are very dangerous people and they are after our children.”

Saleem “worked here for two months” as a community organizer, CAIR Florida executive director Nezar Hamze confirmed to CNSNews.com. “Then he abandoned his job. Around the end of April, he decided not to show up.” Hamze added that Saleem was “still on probation” at the time.
Read more: cnsnews.com

June 5, 2015

Sister says her brother had sexual relationship with former House Speaker Dennis Hastert


Associated Press
Friday, June 5, 2015 9:00am

WASHINGTON — A Montana woman says the FBI interviewed her last month about her allegations that her brother had a sexual relationship while in high school with Dennis Hastert, the wrestling coach who would become speaker of the House.

Hastert was charged last week in a federal indictment that alleges he agreed to pay $3.5 million to someone from Yorkville, the Illinois town where he taught and coached high school wrestling, so the person would stay quiet about "prior misconduct."

Jolene Burdge of Billings, Mont., told the Associated Press on Thursday that the FBI interviewed her in mid-May about Hastert. She said her brother told her before he died in 1995 that his first homosexual contact was with Hastert and that the abuse lasted through all of his high school years.

Burdge would not disclose her brother's name to AP but said he graduated from Yorkville High School in 1971 and that Hastert was his teacher and wrestling coach. Hastert was a teacher and coach in Yorkville from 1965 to 1981, according to the indictment.

In an interview broadcast Friday on ABC's Good Morning America, Burdge identified her brother as Stephen Reinboldt, and said Hastert had been a father figure to him at high school. But she also said she believed that relationship had caused irreparable harm.

"He damaged Steve, I think, more than any of us will ever know," she told the morning show.

The AP could not independently verify her allegations.

The Associated Press, citing a person familiar with the allegations in the indictment, reports that the payments mentioned in the indictment were intended to conceal claims that the Illinois Republican sexually molested someone decades ago. AP said the person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

Hastert has not been charged with sexual abuse. But Burdge's story indicates there could be more victims beyond the "Individual A" named in the indictment.

Hastert did not respond to a message left on his cellphone early Friday. Emails and phone messages sent to his son, Ethan Hastert, were also not answered.

The FBI did not respond to a request for comment on Burdge's allegations.

Reinboldt died in Los Angeles in 1995 at the age of 42. Burdge told ABC that he died of AIDS.

An obituary published in the Aurora Beacon News said Reinboldt had "a unique and fascinating mind" and was drawn to the arts, especially film, drama and music.

He was a manager of the wrestling team that Hastert coached, the AP found. He was also manager of the football team, student council president and a member of the pep club, letterman's club, the French club and the yearbook staff.

He graduated in 1971 and later moved to the Los Angeles area, where he worked for Columbia Pictures in sales and distribution. He also worked for several software companies.

"He wanted to be in TV and film and all that," his brother, Daniel Reinboldt, told AP Thursday. "He went to New York and L.A., back and forth trying to get into the movie business."

On Thursday, Daniel Reinboldt, who still lives in Yorkville, refused to talk to the AP about whether his brother was abused by Hastert. Another sister, Carol Reinboldt, of Lakewood, Colo., did not respond to messages from AP.
Burdge said her brother told her about his past with Hastert in 1979, after she graduated high school, but never brought his story out into the open because he feared "nobody would believe him."

The relationship with Hastert affected him "in a big way," Burdge said.

"He never had a life," she said. "He spent his life trying to run away from it and trying to dull the pain."
The federal indictment, announced May 28, accuses Hastert of evading bank regulations in withdrawing hundreds of thousands of dollars and lying to the FBI about the reason for the withdrawals. The document says Hastert agreed to pay a total of $3.5 million to someone identified only as "Individual A" to "compensate for and conceal (Hastert's) prior misconduct" against that person. But it does not go into any detail about the alleged misconduct.
The former congressman, who has a home in the Chicago suburb of Plano, hasn't been seen in public since the indictment was announced. He resigned from the Washington lobbying firm where he worked.

Burdge considered telling her brother's story in 2006, as a scandal involving Rep. Mark Foley unfolded. Foley, a Florida Republican, was discovered sending inappropriate emails and sexually explicit instant messages to former House pages while Hastert was speaker. Burdge spoke briefly with news outlets, including the Associated Press, but she ultimately decided against coming forward with a statement at that time. Hastert stepped down in 2007.
She said in the last six months, she had started to put her brother's story "on the shelf" trying to move past it. Then the FBI visited her home.

Today, she says she is hopeful that any other victims come forward.

"We can help each other," Burdge said.

Sister says her brother had sexual relationship with former House Speaker Dennis Hastert 06/05/15 [Last modified: Friday, June 5, 2015 9:00am]
I'll just bet Dennis was one of the Franklin Cover Up toys....
May 31, 2015

Bernie Sanders Busting through retail politics!

The venues are too small. The people trying to get in don't care. Those that do, and still cannot hear, do not care. They say they just had to be there!

The Bernie Store server is overloaded. People have to keep trying to get into the cue, to purchase.

Everything is up close and personal in IA, but for Bernie, there is not enough room!

BERNIE IS BIG! He is throwing off balance the way they are used to doing things. Too many are coming to see him.

Because it's a campaign, these types of growing pains are SUCCESS!

Hillary can still go into a diner and sit in a booth. Some here say soon she won't be able to either. Bernie just arrived. Iowa is there to greet him. I love it.


May 31, 2015

BERNIE SANDERS - Coming up on Meet the Press!

The last time I saw him on that show, he ate Chuck Toad for brunch!

Here it is.....and I can't wait to see todays!


May 29, 2015

MacDill AFB captain arrested in Brevard County during underage-sex sting

By Zack Peterson, Times Staff Writer
Thursday, May 28, 2015 5:30pm
Capt. Christopher Everding

TAMPA — A MacDill Air Force Base captain was arrested last week after authorities said he drove to Brevard County to have sex with an underage girl who turned out to be a Department of Homeland Security agent in disguise online.

Capt. Christopher Everding communicated with the agent for a week before he drove south, stopping to buy condoms along the way, according to a federal criminal complaint filed May 23. The agent posted an ad on a website in which he pretended to be the 13-year-old girl's father.

According to the complaint, Everding sent the agent a photograph of himself and asked for one of the girl in return. To conceal his identity, the agent sent back a photo of a Brevard County Sheriff's Office employee.

When Everding arrived at their meeting place on Friday, he admitted to explicit sexual comments he made during his correspondence with the agent, the complaint said. It said he also admitted to having online discussions about bestiality with a different teenager in 2012. He was arrested Friday at the meeting place.

MacDill officials released a statement saying they were aware of the allegations against Everding and were taking them seriously. They referred further questions to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Everding is being held in a federal facility in Seminole County, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

"He is charged with an attempt to entice a minor to engage in illicit sexual conduct," spokesperson Amy Filjone wrote in an email. "He is facing 10 years to life in prison."

Contact Zack Peterson at zpeterson@tampabay.com. Follow @zackpeterson918.

MacDill AFB captain arrested in Brevard County during underage-sex sting 05/28/15 [Last modified: Thursday, May 28, 2015 9:13pm]
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May 28, 2015

Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio open to more oil drilling as issue gains attention in Florida


Here we go again! Jebby pulled this crap in 2002 when he extended Area 181 outward towards Tampa Bay, calling it a "win-win" during the McBride vs. Bush campaign. The moratorium used to be 250 miles out, now it's closer and only until 2022! Read this all the way through....

By Alex Leary, Washington Bureau Chief

Efforts to open up oil drilling off both Florida coasts could inject the issue into the race for president, and home state contenders Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio are supportive of more production.

Neither Republican appears receptive to legislation U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., filed last week to block a proposal from gulf state lawmakers that would end the ban on drilling within a certain distance of the coast.

The current prohibition, ranging from 125 miles to 235 miles, expires in 2022. It was established in 2006.
Proponents, led by Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., say more drilling would create jobs and they play down environmental impacts. The proposal would allow rigs as close as 50 miles.

Nelson last week declared that Florida is "under siege" and filed counter legislation that would extend the ban to 2027.

"We're still reviewing the bill, but Sen. Rubio supports developing our domestic energy resources responsibly and effectively, including offshore drilling and oil exploration," Rubio spokeswoman Brooke Sammon said.

As governor, Bush helped fight efforts to encroach on Florida's shores. (BS TIMES! they wanted to get rid of area 181 and Jeb said make it smaller for a win win.) But he too sounds more open to the idea now.

"Gov. Bush believes in opening up federal lands and water for drilling in a thoughtful way, in order to enhance America's energy security," spokeswoman Allie Brandenburger said.

"As governor, he worked to strike a balance between promoting and protecting different economic and state interests in Florida including tourism, energy development, and military readiness," she added.

"Expanding domestic energy production is key to ensuring America's energy security and with input from state leaders, we now have a chance to create a national energy plan to reform the leasing system to expand drilling in areas where it is safe."

Nelson also raised fears about the Atlantic coast, where the 2022 moratorium does not apply.
The Obama administration moved in 2014 to allow oil and gas explorers to conduct seismic tests off Florida's Atlantic coast.

"It would interfere with military operations off of Jacksonville and rocket launches from Kennedy Space Center and Patrick Air Force base, not to mention the environmental hazards it would pose," Nelson recently said. "If you're not going to drill there, then why do the seismic testing?"

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said in an interview that the Interior Department's procedures for giving out permits has "been informed by the need to put in place even more rigorous safety standards" since the 2010

Deepwater Horizon explosion spilled 200 million gallons into the Gulf of Mexico.

Oil drilling has long been a dicey political issue in Florida, a state highly dependent on its tourism economy. The 2010 spill is a fresh reminder of what can go wrong.

But the once unified stance by Florida officials against drilling has softened in recent years.

In 2008 then-candidate Barack Obama supported the ban but then shifted positions amid soaring gas prices.

The Tampa Bay Times asked for Hillary Clinton's views — she's attended fundraisers in Florida on Thursday and has more Friday — and her campaign declined to answer several requests for comment.
Contact Alex Leary at aleary@tampabay.com. Follow @learyreports.

Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio open to more oil drilling as issue gains attention in Florida 05/28/15 [Last modified: Thursday, May 28, 2015 5:28pm]
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Damn it again on another issue Hillary! Hey Times, go ask Bernie Sanders!!!!)

May 28, 2015

Sen Nelson & Sen Rubio Appointee Resigns, Admits He's UNFIT! - More 3rd way!

Outspoken Sam Rashid withdraws from post, acknowledging he wasn't fit for it

By William March, Times Columnist

Wednesday, May 27, 2015 6:14pm

Sam Rashid, east Hillsborough businessman and conservative political activist, saved face this week by doing something not many people would do. He withdrew from a prestigious political post to which he had been appointed by Florida's two senators, acknowledging that he wasn't fit for it.

Rashid is opinionated and outspoken — and that's how his friends would describe it. But he doesn't mind admitting it.

Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio jointly named Rashid to a committee that advises them on federal judgeship appointments, over which senators have strong influence. Spots on the committee are a plum for donors, and Rashid is a Rubio supporter.

But Rashid's immediate reaction was to post his nomination on Facebook along with gloating comments that some local judges were "dumb," and now had no hope of a federal appointment. The comments could have been embarrassing to Rubio.

The next day, realizing he'd made a dumb move of his own, Rashid sent a letter to Rubio's general counsel withdrawing from the committee, acknowledging that his comments meant he "won't be an impartial entity on this council."

He posted the letter on Facebook too, but then took the whole thing down.


Now, just how smart was it to appoint this activist to judge judges, because of his donations! Senator Nelson should be ashamed!

May 28, 2015

Complaints of Bernie Sanders Coverage to the Tampa Bay Times

These are similar complaints about this news institution. These are complaints from those who actually receive the paper on their doorstep. The story was put up online the night before at 9:38pm, and removed by morning. So if you read online which you must also PAY $$, you missed if you did not stay up late. If you read in the morning, it was removed. Gone from the current day online edition. Don't forget this is the paper who ignored Nan Rich, our Senate Leader, for republican turned Democrat Charlie Crist. He would not even debate her. Here are a couple of OTHER opinions, from today's letters.

cross thread topic here: http://www.democraticunderground.com/10026736028
Thursday's letters: Don't ignore promising candidate
Re: Wednesday, May 27, 2015 4:14pm

Sanders vows to fix what ails America | May 27
Don't ignore promising candidate

Finally, there is a candidate for president with a platform of ideas that are truly in the best interest of the majority of Americans. We can only hope the Tampa Bay Times and its editorial board, mainstream media and the Democratic Party will not disregard Bernie Sanders the way they did Nan Rich in her run for governor.

Rich offered the most promise for the people of Florida. But the Times, other in-state media and the DNC all but ignored her candidacy under the assumption that she could not win due to a lack of funding and name recognition. Instead, they got behind a mediocre alternative who failed to excite voters and lost to a highly unpopular incumbent.

Sanders is light-years behind Hillary Clinton in funding and name recognition. But his ideas and priorities are just what this country needs. And we know he, unlike Clinton (as well as all of the Republican candidates), is not under the thumb of big money.

It is easy to conclude a little-known candidate with low poll numbers and a small campaign chest "cannot win," especially in a national election. But the power of social media has never been greater and can go a long way in neutralizing gaps in funding and name recognition. Plus, the electorate has never been more turned off by the corporate-run, big-money politics that have taken over this country.

The media and DNC alone cannot put Sanders in the White House, but by ignoring his candidacy, they can prevent any chance of him getting there.

Chip Thomas, Tampa
(and.......another (multiple letters in a small space which means the Times received many)

Sanders vows to fix what ails America May 27

More coverage on policy

I was disappointed that your article about Bernie Sanders announcing his candidacy was not on the front page.

I am an avid hockey fan, but the outcome of the Lightning game has far less impact on us than Sanders' candidacy. The next president will have a lasting effect on the nation and the world. The Republican hopefuls have all had space on the front page at one time or another.
Please increase your coverage of the policy positions, agreements and disagreements among the candidates. We need more substantive discussion and less reporting of the candidate's daily micro gains and losses in the polls.

Guy Hancock, Largo


and so it goes......

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