Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Teachers' Union Defrauds Wells Fargo in South Berkeley

We're still shaking our heads at this story in the Bay Citizen: apparently it's perfectly okay in Berkeley these days to be a deadbeat on your mortgage and break into a property you've been evicted from, as long as union thugs are willing to back you up.

The mortgage deadbeat in this case is Tanya Dennis (pictured on the left), a former high school vice principal in Oakland. About a year and a half ago, Wells Fargo foreclosed on her home in South Berkeley, and Alameda County Sheriff's deputies were called in to evict her. Her response? Hiring a locksmith and breaking back into her old home, and suing Wells Fargo in federal court. When her suit was tossed out, she called in the goon squad, in this case the Oakland teachers' union. Assisted by the union and an ACORN-associated community group, she publicly ripped bank officials and got state lawmakers to lobby on her behalf. Eventually, Wells Fargo tired of the bad press, because they've apparently agreed to write down over 20% of the principal on the mortgage, eating a loss of $119,000. This will drop Dennis's mortgage payments by $500 per month.

At this point, we don't see why Dennis doesn't just keep the pressure on and try to force Wells Fargo to take a loss on the rest of the principal. We've already established that breaking into a property you don't own and reneging on the terms of an agreement you willingly signed are perfectly fine as long as you have the right political connections. Why not follow the logic through to its conclusion and just declare that people with the right friends in Sacramento should be given free houses at the expense of lenders?


  1. RobAug 24, 2011 01:57 PM
    Since the 20% principle writedown amounts to a gift under IRS rules, it is taxable. I wonder what she will say to the IRS (and state of California!) when they come to her with a tax bill due.
  2. GSLAug 24, 2011 02:00 PM
    Heh. Ouch.
  3. RobAug 24, 2011 02:39 PM
    Actually, I appear to be wrong. Congress appears to have changed the law in 2007 so that a principle residence is exempt. (I was thinking of a case where a friend got upside-down on his mortgage in the downturn of the early 90's and could have ended up owing taxes had he done a cramdown. Instead, he went into Chapter 13 bankruptcy and took the hit to his credit.)