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Monday, February 4, 2008



Classified Ads---Syndicator
    Lease Police---January, 2008, Report
        Credit Manager's Index Opens 2008 in a Slump
Don’t wait for the government!
Create your own Stimulus package!
by Scott Wheeler, CLP
    Leasing Association Conferences 2008
        Top Stories --- January 28—February 1
            Classified Ads---Help Wanted
    Cartoon---Cleaning lady and Oracle Software
Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
“What is a True Lease?”
    Alliance commercial laundry equipment
        PayNet Adds Legal Name Search Capabilities
            GoIndustry to acquire DoveBid
    Fitch: Worsening Mortgage Performance
Bank of America, Countrywide face hurdles
    Reverse mortgages a growing concern
        U.S. Concern over Economy Highest in Years
    News Briefs---
You May have Missed---
    California Nuts Brief---
        Sports Briefs---
"Gimme that Wine"
    Calendar Events
        Snapple Real Facts
Today's Top Event in History
    This Day in American History
        Football Poem
    Daily Puzzle
News on Line---Internet Newspapers
Stars and Stripes

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”


Classified Ads---Syndicator

Overland Park, KS
Top Syndicator from single deal to portfolios. 20+ yrs exp. Available for contract work or full time position. Nationwide contacts.

Westchester County, NY
7+ years in pricing, credit, and syndications. Strong credit skills and marketing experience at VP level. All collateral. MBA in Finance.

For a full listing of all “job wanted” ads, please go to:

To place a free “job wanted” ad here, please go to:



Lease Police---January, 2008, Report

Lease Police continues to grow, building up its files. January was a "great month," according to Lease Police President Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP." We received 21 new subscribers so that figure has swelled to 78. One of those new subscribers is a major funder that has signed up but has not yet completed sending in their early unsatisfactory terminations and instituting the daily input of applications.

"We now have 95 'alerts' posted and it appears that there are a number of new groups forming all the time. With the internet, they can form, move their applications to 30-40 brokers/funders all in the short time of 2-3 months and hope to catch 3-4 firms before they melt into the night.

"At the present time all inquiries are no charge at least until March 31, 2008. The company is committed to custom its pricing to resemble credit bureau prices. At least 30 days before that date we will determine if our data base is sufficient to give value to our subscribers and what the charge will be after that---"

"Lease Police is a computer driven company created to be able to deliver a product at the lowest cost to our subscribers. There will be no monthly payment and no minimum usage. It is a pay for usage only on reports pulled but it does rely on its subscribers to report on any unusual activity of a vendor or lessee, all given anonymously."

At this point, Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP, has been "self-funding the project" for almost two years. He has several other larger funders who will be joining and contributing, as his goal is to build up the files and make the program more worthwhile, thus there has been no charge.

"I am continuing to build the base of vigilant subscribers who are always the first to give me a 'heads up ' on an unusual activity. I look forward to any inquiries from those who want to join Lease Police."

Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP
Lease Police, Inc.



Credit Manager's Index Opens 2008 in a Slump

Manufacturing Sales Drop Sharply

“Signs of the downturn are everywhere: terrible holiday sales, massive job losses in housing and in financial services, downtrends in volatile global financial markets, downgrades of bond insurers and many debt instruments, the Fed overreacting with cuts of 1.25% in eight days and an emergency stimulus plan in the works,” said Daniel North, chief economist with credit insurer Euler Hermes ACI, commenting on the latest from the National Association of Credit Managers monthly survey.

The seasonally adjusted Credit Manager’s Index (CMI) fell for the fifth consecutive month in January, slipping 1.0 point to a record low of 51.4. The previous record had been set last month at 52.4.

“Clearly, these unpleasant trends in the macro economy are now well reflected in credit managers’ experience,” he said.

“The CMI’s steady decline has mirrored other macroeconomic data which suggests a sharp slowdown. For instance, fourth quarter GDP grew at an annualized rate of only 0.6%, well under expectations of 1.1% and the long-term average of 3.5%. The GDP report showed the economy as perilously close to the beginning of a recession.”

The seasonally adjusted manufacturing sector index fell for the fourth time in five months, dropping 1.8 points to 51.7, the second lowest level in the index’s history. Six of the 10 components fell, including a sharp decline in the sales component of 8.9 points.

“A decline in the sales component of this magnitude is often a harbinger of decay in the overall manufacturing index in the coming months,” North said. “It’s no surprise that the housing market is the biggest culprit.” North also explained how one survey respondent noted that their increased past dues were coming from one of the largest national chains of building supplies. Another noted that terrible business conditions in residential construction is now rather ominously “beginning to affect commercial jobs as well.” Finally, one participant, a concrete and stone supplier to the housing industry, painfully summed up business conditions as, “By far worse this year than past years.”

The seasonally adjusted service sector index fell for the fourth consecutive month in January, sliding 0.1 points to 51.1. “In addition, six of the 10 components fell, indicating a broad-based and more pervasive decay recently,” North said.

“Negative commentary from the survey participants is of course mostly about the housing industry, but participants from other industries are now chiming in with their comments about deteriorating conditions as well.” According to one participant in farm and garden machinery and equipment, they have had “more bankruptcies in one month than ever before,” and a participant in plastics also noted that bankruptcies are up. A packing and crating industry respondent noted their former good paying customers are having trouble, telling them “I can’t pay you until I get paid.” Another participant in the motor vehicle supplies and new parts industry noted a tough couple of months for many of their customers, and another in freight transportation summed it up by saying, “Things are slow.”

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the combined Credit Manager’s Index has fallen 5.0 points to 51.4. The manufacturing sector index has fallen 4.9 points and the service sector index has fallen 5.1 points. “In all three indexes, all of the 10 components have fallen, giving a very clear signal that the indexes are in a strong and pervasive downtrend,” said North.


The National Association of Credit Management (NACM), headquartered in Columbia, Maryland supports more than 22,000 business credit and financial professionals worldwide with premier industry services, tools and information. NACM and its network of Affiliated Associations are the leading resource for credit and financial management information and education, delivering products and services which improve the management of business credit and accounts receivable. NACM's collective voice has influenced legislative results concerning commercial business and trade credit to our nation's policy makers for more than 100 years, and continues to play an active part in legislative issues pertaining to business credit and corporate bankruptcy.



Don’t wait for the government!
Create your own Stimulus package!

by Scott Wheeler, CLP

Don’t wait for the government - create your own Stimulus package!
Take charge and improve your own situation while others wallow in despair!!!

In the last few months the talking heads and media continue to scream about doom and gloom and how the economy has tanked. The noise cannot be disregarded or dismissed; although, the true optimist will step back and reassess the noise and create a plan to maximize the situation. It is true that the economy has slowed. But it has not stopped and as of right now there is no indication of actual contraction or negative growth. The unemployment rate is low and the majority of Americans are still spending and flourishing. Although, their confidence has been tarnished because of the noise coming from the doom and gloomers - I would contend it is mostly the noise, not the facts, which is causing the slowness. You may even have co-workers who have slowed their production because they are falling into a state of self pity. You have a choice (because life is all about choices) You can join the meek or you can stand tall and take charge of your own destination and make the only rational choice of moving forward and outperforming your competition.

I have always looked at these times – and there have been many over the last twenty years- as opportunities to outperform the competition. I am assuming my competition is coming to work an hour later and taking longer lunches, and leaving work fifteen minutes early because in their minds it just isn’t worth the extra effort. It’s too hard out there; why bother. WOW!!!! This is exactly what I have been waiting for; my competition has their guard down not pushing forward. It is time for me to charge ahead with gusto and get my name out to more vendors and more lessees than ever before. The time is right to prospect and show the world how I am better than the rest in good times and even the “slower” times because I am committed to my work- now is the time to give 110% while the wallowers are giving 50%.

Vendors are talking about clients who are delaying their purchases because of cash flow concerns, lessees are talking about how they are using more of their bank lines to cover slowing receivables. WOW!!!!, Leasing is all about cash flow and alternative financing options. I have the solution to help stimulate business for my vendors, lessees and ME.

There is no doubt the world is made up of wallowers, but I choose not to participate in these activities. There is work to be done and for those who take individual responsibility for their own destinations and choose to move forward no matter what noise is being sent from the mountain tops; there are opportunities to be seized and money to be made especially in an industry which offers solutions in a time of financial needs.

The question is- Are you a WALLOWER or a HIGH ACHIEVER?

WALLOWER: – One who flounder about or proceeds clumsily or with difficulty. Hogs
Wallow Elephants wallow
HIGH ACHIEVER: One who has a record of success- one who exceeds the standards
(no matter what the circumstances)

(Photo courtesy of Sandy Spring Bank)

Scott Wheeler, CLP
Active in leasing industry since 1982. 1989- Present, The Equipment Leasing Company – Baltimore Maryland. Currently: President of the Equipment Leasing Company; board member of the Eastern Association of Equipment Lessors, Certified Leasing Professional since 2000.



Leasing Association Conference 2008

April 6th-9th, 2008
Spring Conference
Eastern Association of Equipment Lessors
Ritz Carlton
Amelia Island, FL


April 10-12
National Association of Equipment Leasing Brokers
Sheraton Hotel
New Orleans, Louisiana
Conference Program


April 16-17
Equipment Leasing and Finance Association
National Funding Exhibition
Fairmont Hotel
Chicago, IL  


June 11th - 14th, 2008
National Vehicle Leasing Association
Camelback Inn Resort
5402 East Lincoln Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85253   


October 12-14
Equipment Leasing and Finance Association
47th Annual Convention
Hilton New Orleans Riverside
New Orleans, LA


To view Leasing Association Events-Meetings Open to All, please click here.




Top Stories --- January 28—February 1

Here are the top ten stories most “opened” by readers last week:

(1) GE Healthcare Financial cut backs

(2) The Vultures Are Circling

(3) Tax Stimulus Package---Leasing Viewpoint

(4) "You can't handle the truth!"
UAEL “dis-invites” Brook to Spring Conf.

by Christopher Menkin

(5) UAEL-EAEL Merger Talks Official

(6) Hall Dynasty EAEL-UAEL Proposed Merger

(7)Will the Studebaker-Worthington name survive?

(7) Thought Subprime Woes Couldn't Get Any Worse?

(8) $20 Million Home Equity Scam

(9) Bank of West $417.3 Million for 2007

(9) Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
Lease Packager Notification

(10) Classified Ads---Senior Management

Two Extra, not counted due to technical reasons:
Feds Cut Interest 1/2 Points`
Studebaker-Worthington Leasing

(combined here as one)



Leasing Industry Help Wanted

Documentation / Funding Manager

Documentation /
Funding Manager
Austin, Texas

Great opportunity with well-respected company, working in the best part of the world. Click here for more information.

Affiliated Investment Group has 22 years experience serving the broker community.

EFD Marketing Officer

EFD Marketing Officer
Walnut Creek, CA

You will identify, develop and maintain broker relationships. Requires a BA or equivalent &
5 years of experience in the equipment financing industry. CLICK HERE for a detailed description and resume submission info.

Visit, for more information. Bank of the West and its subsidiaries are equal opportunity/affirmative action employers.

Lease Officer


SMALL TICKET LESSOR, providing superior service for 35+years Transactions- $10Kto $1MM, Seeks seasoned sales professionals To learn more: sandyspringbank.tms or contact Scott Wheeler at





Leasing 102

by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP

What is a True Lease?

Once we used the term “true lease” to identify a transaction that meets the Internal Revenue Service’s requirements so the Lessor will be viewed as the one that made the Capital investment and is therefore allowed to assume the Capital Recovery Benefits called MACRS Depreciation. Then in 1988 the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) created Article 2A to identify legal ownership and recognized three party leasing where if the Lessor was not the supplier of the equipment and if they passed the supply contract (performance guarantee’s) on to the Lessee then the lease could contain a “hell and high water clause” that requires the lessee to make payments regardless of the equipments performance. So now the term is used to identify both a tax and a legal lease.

However, a true lease is not a lease containing a bargain purchase option. A bargain purchase option is defined as an option that a prudent business person would be compelled to exercise because there would be a profit in doing so. A fixed price purchase option is acceptable “if” documentation is provided in your lease folder that the fixed price is the approximate future retail value of the equipment. Also you cannot have onerous return language so that it would appear that it was cheaper to purchase the equipment than to return it. This makes even a fair market value purchase option a bargain.

A true lease could be both a Capital and an Operating lease for accounting purposes. Although usually an operating lease will be a true lease. The accounting classification rules are very different than the true lease rules. The 90% test does not exist as a true lease test.
In 1986 when the tax depreciation rules (MACRS) was introduced and IDC was eliminated the emphasis for leasing changed from Tax leasing to the benefits of the accounting approach and true leasing seemed to take a back seat. Now that the economy is looking sluggish and problem leases are posing problems the emphasis is “How come we did not follow the legal rules so we are an Executory contract for Bankruptcy purposes.” Following the requirements for a legal (Article 2A) lease is very close to tax lease requirements. If your lessee goes into default you will wish to have a legal lease instead of an Article 9 loan.

It is easier to sell a bargain option lease to customers today because the discussion does not require a lot of customer information other than financials. Salespersons who are order takers, instead of professional lease salespersons, do not know why a true lease is a better transaction for both Lessee and Lessor. A true lease requires you to understand income tax requirements, the definition of a legal lease to gain the protections of Article 2A, and the lease classification requirements for GAAP accounting.

A true lease allows the Lessee to expense the lease payments as paid for income tax. A money over money transaction (bargain option lease) requires the lessee to take MACRS depreciation and interest expense for income tax purposes. A true lease gives the Lessor lots of protections not found in Article 9 for money over money deals. Irregular or seasonal lease payments are easier to handle when they are a true lease and an operating lease for GAAP. You lose most of the advantages of irregular payments that are created to match lessee’s revenue stream or budget restrictions when you have a capital lease or a money over money deal.

If this article is confusing to you I suggest you get some training on the rules of the road for commercial equipment leasing or purchase one of the many books or CD’s on the subject and move to become an knowledgeable leasing expert. Once you are trained you can also apply to get a Certified Lease Professional (CLP) rating by taking the test offered by the CLP foundation.

Mr. Terry Winders, CLP, has been a teacher, consultant, expert witness for the leasing industry for thirty years and can be reached at or 502-327-8666.
He invites your questions and queries.

Previous #102 Columns:


### Press Release ###########################

Commercial Laundry Equipment Manufacturer Does More
Than Extend Credit to Laundromats - It Finances Much of Their Operations!


Alliance manufactures commercial laundry equipment under well-known brand names like Cissell, Huebsch, Ipso, Speed Queen and Unimac. The brands are supported through an extensive network of distributors and route operators throughout the world. Alliance Laundry sells equipment to distributors who sell to "Mom and Pop" laundromats (their largest client segment), hotels and institutions like hospitals, colleges, universities and prisons.

Here's where it gets complicated and interesting: The distributors can offer financing to their clients through the captive credit arm of Alliance.

A "Mom and Pop" Laundromat may require $200K to $500K in financing. These financing costs encompass equipment and construction build out of the laundry facility. Today's typical laundromat has approximately 80 pieces of equipment that cost between $1,200 and $12,000 each. The construction build-out costs can be part of the financing. The investor in the laundromat typically puts 30 percent into the overall financing of the operation (in a $500K operation, the customer finances $150K, and the captive credit company of Alliance finances $350K.)

Department Overview
Alliances' Finance organization is comprised of three distinct teams; underwriting, customer support and portfolio management. It is the portfolio management team which is the most significant and unique twist in Alliance's captive finance company approach and the one for which Portfolio Manager Wayne Crosby is responsible.

Portfolio Manager Wayne Crosby

Underwriting and customer support perform the typical functions of most credit departments. Underwriting extends credit after processing credit applications, analyzing financial statements and credit reports of prospective clients as well as examining market analysis and demographic reports. The group has layered approval levels:

$50K for credit analysts

Over $50K to $150K requires the additional approval of a credit supervisor

Over $150K to $250K requires the prior level plus the director of financial services

Over $250K to $5MM requires the prior level plus the CFO signature

Loans above the $5MM mark require approval of the Credit Committee, which includes the CEO.

Underwriting remains focused on "speeding up" the credit process by striving for same-day approval for all loans up to $100K and 48 to 72 hours for larger loans.

The customer support team books loans into the system, handles the Finance group's daily cash management relationships with lock box and ACH providers, applies cash receipts and oversees the critical UCC filings. At this point, the portfolio management team begins delivering their true value-added service to the captive clients.

Early Intervention: Sophisticated Collections With a TwistCrosby is responsible for ensuring the financial integrity of the portfolio. As the secured lender, the team is responsible for the portfolio meeting auditor's standards. Portfolio Management springs to action when payments from borrowers are eight days late. Their expertise is in eliminating potential credit losses by amending and rewriting loans, while helping clients to navigate through business challenges.

In the more traditional scenario, invoices are often over 90 days past due before any action is taken. At that point, a delinquency is reported and the borrower can be "on the hook" for the entire outstanding amount of the loan. In sharp contrast, when an Alliance client's invoice is only eight days past due, the early intervention group:

Contacts the client

Helps the client to analyze why performance is off and

Makes the determination whether payment can and should be made or restructures the loan to allow the client to "work out" of the problem and continue to pay on the loan.

Real Life issues-Real Life Solutions
Crosby describes his team as outstandingly good at what they do. "We have one goal and that is to help keep our clients in business and keep loans performing." The team has the ability to help clients overcome not simply credit issues but issues related to business process and management.

They have become a resource rather than an adversary in working out creative solutions with their clients. Their historical performance analysis of business process/efficiency has provided them with critical knowledge on things like site water usage and interpolating the revenue a site should be producing based upon that usage.

"If something is broken, we have the expertise and data to determine why," says Crosby. He knows that total utilities should range between 22 to 28 percent of total gross. If they do not, then potential issues like employee theft could be factors in a business's poor performance metrics.

Unique Delinquency Measurement
Portfolio Management's delinquency is judged differently than a typical credit department. Delinquency is based upon the total loan amount outstanding and not just the amount of the recent delinquent payment. In problem cases, Crosby and his team will restructure the deal by tiering or offering interest-only payments. For new, small businesses they will build in ramp-up periods. Since 2004, portfolio management at Alliance has brought the percentage of dollars in the portfolio that are over 30 days past due, down by 25 percent. The historical percentage of portfolio over 30 days past due is 3.1 percent. Crosby's team goal in 2007 is 2.7 percent.

There are seasonality issues in this business. In the summer , when kids are not in school, laundromats experience a seasonal decline in revenue, affecting the timeliness of payments. Crosby is one of four direct reports to Todd Rice, director of financial services for Alliance.

Department Budget - The Envy of Credit Managers
Crosby is given the budget necessary to get the job done. The budget is based upon historical trends and has not been exceeded since 2004. Crosby has a $400K legal expense budget and a $400K remarketing budget. The remarketing budget is key to obtaining recoveries on defaulted loans. When a borrower does default and a store does need to be sold, certain expenses inevitably surface and others are incurred. A distributor can earn up to 10 percent of the recovery price for finding a qualified buyer to either purchase the store or take over the debt. Sometimes Alliance learns that the defaulted borrower got behind in the rent and the landlord won't allow the lease to be assumed until the rent is brought current, or local tax authorities advise that the personal property taxes have not been paid. In these situations Crosby needs to manage his budget and negotiate with everyone who has their hand out.

Trends/Challenges in Industry: Listening to Distributors
Like most credit operations, the focus is on making the process less onerous and cumbersome for clients. The distributors of the equipment are quick to provide feedback on ways that Alliance might improve their operation, and Alliance listens. As a result, one-page credit applications previously used only for transactions up to $50K are now being used for transactions up to $100K. The front end process is continuously being streamlined. Alliance considers their current home-grown AS 400 credit monitoring system obsolete. While the system provides excellent notes, a "must" for credit departments in sharing information enterprise wide, it has a slow response time, and Alliance is currently evaluating new systems. Response time must be speeded up to match the pace of business, says Crosby. Customers, as well as management, are increasingly expecting accurate information more rapidly.

Productivity has been enhanced by phone checks, which give Alliance the ability to create and draft checks by phone. This has dramatically reduced late charges and delinquencies. Alliance charges borrowers $3 per phone check for this service. They also use ACH to automatically debit client accounts for payments. There is no charge for this service. All of these approaches contribute to a skillful managing of delinquencies and non-performing assets.

At a Glance: Alliance Laundry Systems

Corporate HQ: Ripon, Wisconsin

Industry: Leading designer, manufacturer, marketer of standalone commercial laundry equipment

Customer base: Laundromats, multi-housing laundries, consisting primarily of facilities in apartment buildings, universities and military installations and on-premise laundries at hotels, hospitals, nursing homes and prisons

Sales in 2006: $366 million

DSO: Reported as percentage of dollars over 30 days. Currently 3.098% of total portfolio/Annual Goal for 2007 is 2.75%.

Total Loan Portfolio: Approximately $240 million

Portfolio Management Executive reports to: Director of Financial Services

reprinted from CreditToday, also available on line:

To learn more about subscription, please go to:


### Press Release ###########################

PayNet Adds Legal Name Search Capabilities
to Provide a One-Stop Solution
to Accessing Credit Information
Through Its Credit History Report (CHR)

Skokie,Il.--PayNet announces additional benefits to simplify and streamline the credit decisioning process by providing Legal Name identification from Secretaries of State offices in the U.S.

Beginning with partial state coverage, PayNet will add additional states in phases to achieve full nationwide capability.

PayNet's Credit History Report,(CHR) will give lenders a comprehensive view of applicants needed to make the critical credit decisions, all in one report. They will no longer need to incur the time or cost to gather data from multiple sources. In addition to Legal Name verification, they will have access to all important comparable Term Debt Payment History plus UCC Filings as well as Bankruptcies, Liens and Judgments matched into one credit view of a borrower/applicant.

For more information on how this benefit can lower costs and improve efficiency of the application and booking process, please contact:

PayNet Tom McGrath Vice President, Sales 847-745-6092


### Press Release ###########################

GoIndustry to acquire DoveBid

UK based GoIndustry plc is acquiring DoveBid Inc in a pivotal deal which will create the world's largest industrial machinery and equipment auctioneer.

GoIndustry CEO John Allbrook says 2008 will be another important year in the Company's development following the announcement of the acquisition of DoveBid. During a global teleconference, Allbrook told employees worldwide, that with the acquisition now announced, GoIndustry will embark on a fast and effective integration process, which is expected to realise annual cost synergies of around GBP5 million.

"These are exciting times," said Allbrook. "We are bringing together two great companies with a proud tradition in the surplus industrial machinery and equipment market. I am looking forward to welcoming all our new employees and to a successful future together as we continue to build the world's leading asset sales and valuation services organisation.

"This is a truly transformational deal for our company that will give us a market leading position in the United States, Europe and Asia-Pacific regions. As one company, we are bigger, stronger and more focused, with a clear ambition to serve our customers and help them become even more successful."

The enlarged group will operate in three business areas: Corporate Disposition, Disposals and Valuations Services.

"We want to maximize the expertise of all our employees and grow our company in markets across the globe," continued Allbrook. "Our efforts will be channelled into building on the momentum we have already created and making sure that the enlarged group, which, going forward will be called "GoIndustry- DoveBid", delivers on the full potential that this combination offers to our customers, employees, and shareholders."


### Press Release ###########################

Fitch Places $139B U.S. Subprime RMBS On Watch Negative on Worsening Mortgage Performance

Fitch Ratings-New York-01 February 2008: With U.S. subprime mortgage performance deteriorating markedly over the last several months, Fitch Ratings has adjusted its subprime RMBS loss projections accordingly. Fitch attributes this deterioration to accelerating home price declines which are in part due to the dramatic contraction in the mortgage origination and securitization markets. Fitch has also increased its loss expectations for U.S. subprime RMBS backed predominately by first-lien mortgages originated in 2006 and the first half of 2007. The average cumulative loss expectations, as a percentage of the initial securitized balance, are now 21% and 26%, respectively. Accordingly, Fitch has placed approximately $139 billion, of 2006 and 2007 subprime RMBS (comprised of 2,972 rated classes) on Rating Watch Negative. Fitch will be releasing updated ratings through the course of February and anticipates that its rating review of these securities will be substantively completed by Feb. 29, 2008.

Fitch's new loss expectations are based on projection of three major variables:

--The percentage of delinquent loans that are expected to default;
--The percentage of currently performing loans that are expected to default; and
--The severity of loss upon liquidation of defaulted loans.

Mortgage performance in each of these areas has deteriorated. In Fitch's opinion the contraction in the mortgage markets has contributed to an acceleration and deepening of home price declines, and has eliminated the option to sell or refinance a home to avoid foreclosure for many borrowers. Additionally, the apparent willingness of borrowers to 'walk away' from mortgage debt has contributed to extraordinarily high levels of early default, which is particularly noticeable in the 2007 vintage mortgages. As Fitch has described in recent research reports, this behavior appears to be largely attributable to the use of high risk mortgage products such as 'piggy-back' second liens and stated-income documentation programs, which in many instances were poorly underwritten and susceptible to borrower/broker fraud.

Fitch's higher loss expectations can be expected to result in widespread and significant downgrades among the bonds placed on Rating Watch Negative, and will affect all levels of the RMBS capital structure. As with prior rating actions on these vintages, Fitch will publish the expected loss for each mortgage pool, as well as the loss coverage for each rated class, and the corresponding loss coverage ratio.

As noted above, the increase in Fitch's loss expectation is driven by both expectations of higher mortgage defaults (aka Frequency of Foreclosure or FOF) and expectations of worsening loss severity (LS) on defaulted loans. The higher default expectations reflect both increased likelihood that delinquent loans will default, and high rates of deteriorating performance among loans that have been current on payments. The combined impact leads to default expectations for the remaining balance of the 2006 and 2007 mortgage pools of 48% and 43% respectively. The loss severity expectation, reflecting Fitch's projection of additional national home price declines of 22% over the next five years, are 58% for 2006 loans and 64% for 2007. The product of the FOF and LS assumptions yields loss expectations of approximately 28% as a percentage of the remaining balance of each vintage. Given that the 2006 vintage remaining balance is smaller than the 2007 remaining balance, these figures translate into the 21% and 26% loss expectations as a percentage of original balance cited above. Fitch notes that the performance of mortgage pools is substantially worse for pools originated in late 2006 and 2007 than in early 2006. Fitch's loss expectations by quarter of origination are as follows:

--1Q'06: 16%;
--2Q'06: 20%;
--3Q'06: 23%;
--4Q'06: 26%;
--1Q'07: 23%;
--2Q'07: 28%.

In addition to calculating new expected losses, Fitch has raised the minimum loss coverage ratio associated with certain rating categories. This change is intended to provide for greater rating stability in an environment of continued stress in both the real-estate markets and the broader economy. Also, Fitch believes that these revisions will result in enhanced rating stability for investment grade and near investment grade classes. The new minimum loss coverage ratios are detailed below:

--'AAA': 2.5;
--'AA': 2.0;
--'A': 1.75;
--'BBB': 1.5;
--'BB': 1.25;
--'B': 1.0;
--'CCC': 0.75;
--'CC': 0.5.

Additionally Fitch's revised ratings do not differentiate rated classes at the subcategory level (e.g. 'BBB+', 'BBB', 'BBB-') but rather only at the full category level. For more information about Fitch's minimum loss coverage ratio methodology, please see the Aug. 7, 2007 report ('Downgrade Criteria for Recent Vintage U.S. Subprime RMBS'), available on both the Fitch Ratings web site ('') and Fitch's Subprime markets page ('

For classes currently rated 'AAA' or 'AA', Fitch considers the expected time to pay-off in addition to the loss coverage ratio. In Fitch's opinion, classes in a sequential pay-down structure that are expected to pay off in the near term have less default risk than longer-term classes, and Fitch's rating actions will reflect this distinction.

Fitch will publish a research report describing the revised rating action methodology and summarizing the rating actions that result from application of the methodology.

A spreadsheet containing the RMBS tranches affected by today's rating action by Fitch is also available at both '' and ''.


### Press Release ###########################

News Briefs----

Bank of America, Countrywide face hurdles

Reverse mortgages a growing concern

U.S. Concern Over Economy Is Highest in Years



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Top Twenty of all time Super Bowl Ads



California Nuts Briefs---

A cruel fate for Yahoo, other Silicon Valley legends



“Gimme that Wine”

A Sommelier With a Sense of What You'll Like

The Sipping News: Rosenblum hands off to Diageo

Robert Haas Honored as Paso Robles 2007 Wine Industry Person of the Year

Wine Prices by vintage
US/International Wine Events
Winery Atlas
Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page
The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) is an electronic exchange for fine wine.



Calendar Events This Day

Angola: Armed Struggle Day
National holiday. Commemorates the beginning of the struggle for independence from Portugal in 1961.

Create a Vacuum Day

Homemade Soup Day

Lundi Gras
"Fat Monday," the day before Mardi Gras
Celebrated in New Orleans, LA, especially, as well as St. Louis, MO.

Iceland: Bun Day
Children invade homes in the morning with colorful sticks and receive gifts of whipped cream buns.
On Shrove Monday.

Abraham Lincoln: Oregon Birthday Observance
Observed annually in Oregon o the first Monday in February.

Shrove Monday
the Monday before Ash Wednesday. In Germany and Austria, it is called Rose Monday.

Stuffed Mushroom Day

Thank a Mailman Day

Sri Lanka: Independence Day: 60th Anniversary
Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka observed National Day Public Holiday. On Feb. 4, 1948, Ceylon (as it was then known obtained independence from Great Britain. The country’s name was changed to Sri Lanka in 1972.

Saint feast Days



Celery has negative calories! It takes more calories to digest a piece of celery than the celery has in it to begin with.



Today's Top Event in History

1913- -Birthday of Rosa Parks, refused to surrender her seat on a bus to a white man 12/1/1955 in Montgomery, AL and started the activist civil rights movement. This brave woman had been an outspoken black rights advocate for more than 20 years, long before Martin Luther King popularized the movement. On Tuesday, June 15, 1999, President Clinton and top lawmakers honored civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks with the prestigious Congressional Gold Medal of Honor. "This medal is encouragement for all of us to continue until all have rights," said Parks, 86, during her brief remarks. Parks' refusal to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama, on December 5, 1955, triggered a black boycott of the city's bus system that lasted more than a year and eventually led to laws that ended legalized segregation.


This Day in American History

    1746- Birthday of Thaddeus Kosciusko, Polish patriot and American Revolutionary War figure. Born at Lithuania, he died at Solothurn, Switzerland, Oct 15, 1817.
    1789- The only president to receive the unanimous vote of the presidential electors was George Washington of Mount Vernon, Virginia, who received all of the 69 votes cast by the lection from the 10 states that voted this day. A nearly unanimous vote took place in November 1816, when James Monroe of Virginia received 231 of the 232 votes casts by the electors from 24 states. The dissenting vote was cast by William Plumer of New Hampshire. Presidential electors met and chose George Washington as America's first president. The Federalist Parry was formed by those who had supported ratification of the Constitution. Its first candidate was Washington. As president, Washington guided the new government as it moved from the concepts expressed in the Constitution into a functioning federal republic, and he firmly established many traditions and precedents which still guide how we as a nation view the presidency. After serving two terms in that office, he refused to seek a third one, believing that two terms were the most that any president should serve. The Federalist, considered pro-English, enjoyed considerable success until 1800, when Thomas Jefferson, a Democratic-Republican, defeated John Adams for the presidency. Eventually the party lost its supporters and ceased to exist about 1820. Alexander Hamilton was one of the party’s founders and foremost leaders. As a point of history, by April 6 the first Congress was formally organized. by its end in 1791 the first Congress consisted of 26 senators of whom 17 supported the Washington administration and 9 were generally in opposition. In the House the division was 38 and 26. Senators were chosen by each of the state’s legislators until the 20th century by the 17th amendment.
    1810- The Cumberland Presbyterian Church was organized in Tennessee as an outgrowth of the Great Revival of 1800. Standing between Calvinism and Arminianism, the denomination holds a "medium theology" which affirms unlimited atonement, universal grace, conditional election, eternal security of the believer and salvation of all children dying in infancy.
    1826- The Last of the Mohicans by James Fennimore Cooper is published. One of the earliest distinctive American novels, the book is the second of the five-novel series called the "Leather-stocking Tales." He continued to write about the American frontier in his third book, The Pioneer, which featured backcountry scout Natty Bumppo, known in this book as "Leather-stocking." The character, representing goodness, purity, and simplicity, became tremendously popular, and reappeared, by popular demand, in five more novels, known collectively as the "Leather-stocking Tales." The second book in the series, The Last of the Mohicans, is still widely read today. The five books span Bumppo's life, from coming of age through approaching death.
    1841-Plagued by poor investment decisions and an uncertain economic climate, the Bank of the United States was forced to call it quits on February 4, 1841. It was a painful end for an institution that had suffered through one of the more contentious episodes in the nation’s early financial history. Indeed, the Bank was the direct product of President Alexander Hamilton’s controversial push for a national banking system. Despite the staunch objections of Thomas Jefferson, the federal government chartered the first Bank of the United States in 1791. However, Jefferson kept up his attack, and in 1811, led his supporters in Congress in a successful attempt to block the renewal of the bank’s charter. Buoyed by a confluence of conditions, including state banks’ recent run of woes and political shifts in the House, pro-bank forces forged a new charter in 1816. Under the charge of Nicholas Biddle, the revived Bank of the U.S. enjoyed some healthy years. However, before long, the Bank faced another round of opposition, this time led by President Andrew Jackson, who fiercely opposed the notion of a central bank system. A nasty and protracted political battle ensued, as the president attempted to use his executive power to do away with the bank. Jackson eventually won out, and when the bank’s charter expired in 1836, Biddle shifted course and reestablished the Bank of the United States as a state institution based in Pennsylvania. Biddle’s bank limped on for a few more years before being finally shut down on February 4, 1841.
    1847- Magnetic Telegraph of Maryland opened four offices in New York City for $250 a year, Philadelphia for$ !50, in Baltimore for $150, and Washington, DC for $50 a year to become the first Telegraph company. At first, messages were sent by pigeons across the Hudson River from Jersey City, NJ to New York City. Later, a lead pipe enclosing a covered wire saturated with pitch was laid under the river. The rates from Baltimore to Washington were e1`0 cents for the first 10 words an 1 cent for each additional minute. The rates form New York to Washington were 50 cents for the first 10 words and 5 cents for each additional word.
    1861- The Apache Wars: The period of conflict known as the Apache Wars began at Apache Pass, AZ, when Army Lieutenant George Bascom arrested Apache Chief Cochise for raiding a ranch. Cochise escaped and declared war. The wars lasted 25 years under the leadership of Cochise and, later, Geronimo.
    1861- the first Confederate congressional session took place, lasting until March 16. Its official title was Congress of the Confederate States. The president of the Senate was Alexander Hamilton Stephens of Georgia, the president pro tempore was Robert Mercer Taliaferro Hunter of Virginia, and the secretary of the Senate was James H. Nash of South Carolina. The House of Representatives under the permanent constitution met in Richmond ,VA, on February 18, 1861. Emmet Dixon of Georgia was elected clerk and Thomas Salem Bocock of Virginia was elected speaker. The session adjourned on April 21, 1862. The first order of business was drafting a constitution. They used the U.S. Constitution as a model, and most of it was taken verbatim. It took just four days to hammer out a tentative document to govern the new nation. The president was limited to one six-year term. Unlike the U.S. Constitution, the word "slave" was used and the institution protected in all states and any territories to be added later. Importation of slaves was prohibited, as this would alienate European nations and would detract from the profitable "internal slave trade" in the South. Other components of the constitution were designed to enhance the power of the states--governmental money for internal improvements was banned and the president was given a line-item veto on appropriations bills. The Congress then turned its attention to selecting a president. The delegates settled on Jefferson Davis, a West Point graduate who was the U.S. Secretary of War in the 1850s and a senator from Mississippi. It was emphatic that the purpose of the confederacy was to preserve slavery. There were many rich slave owners in the south and the loss of their property would mean not only substantial loss of their assets, but future income as they would have to pay for work on their farms and other businesses. ( an irony of the times, there were Negroes who were also “slave owners” At the turn of the century, there were slaves also owned in the North.)
Here is one county, Lowndes District in the County of Lowndes, State of Alabama, to give you an idea of the division of “property.”
This will substantiate that there were “free Blacks” who also owned “Black slaves.”
Slave Census of Connecticut and Washington, 1790. It is also correct many of the Northern states began to outlaw slavery in their state after the ratification of the constitution.
But make it clear, the purpose of the Confederate States of America was to preserve slavery and was so stated in their constitution.
    1873- Birth of George Bennard, American Methodist evangelist. He penned over 300 Gospel songs during his lifetime, but is primarily remembered today for one: "The Old Rugged Cross."
    1895 - In Chicago, Illinois, the Van Buren Street Bridge opened. It was the first rolling lift bridge. It consisted of two arms meeting at the center of the river. The bridge was operated by two 50 horsepower electric motors on each side of the bridge.
    1902-Birthday of Charles Augustus Lindbergh, American aviator, nick named “Lucky Lindy,” was the first to fly solo and nonstop over the Atlantic Ocean, New York to Paris, May 20-21, 1927. He became a Nazi sympathizer, accepting awards from Adoph Hitler and after the war, efforts were made to downplay his lobbying for the Nazi regime. Born at Detroit, MI; died at Kipahula, Maui, HI, Aug 27,1974.
    1904 – Birthday of MacKinlay Kantor, novelist (Andersonville) , born Webster City, Iowa. died on October 11, 1977 His best seller was a story about the infamous Andersonville prison of Civil War fame, into which tens of thousands of Northerners were inhumanely confined under obscene conditions.

    1908-Birthday of trumpet player Mannie Klein, New York City
    1913- -Birthday of Rosa Parks, refused to surrender her seat on a bus to a white man 12/1/1955 in Montgomery, AL and started the activist civil rights movement. This brave woman had been an outspoken black rights advocate for more than 20 years, long before Martin Luther King popularized the movement. On Tuesday, June 15, 1999, President Clinton and top lawmakers honored civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks with the prestigious Congressional Gold Medal of Honor. "This medal is encouragement for all of us to continue until all have rights," said Parks, 86, during her brief remarks. Parks' refusal to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama, on December 5, 1955, triggered a black boycott of the city's bus system that lasted more than a year and eventually led to laws that ended legalized segregation.
    1914—Pellagra is caused by a deficiency of the B vitamin niacin. Dr. Joseph
Goldberger of the U.S. Public Health Service at the Mississippi State Penitentiary, eight miles east of Jackson, MS, began the first public finding. Twelve convicts agreed to submit to a restricted-diet test in exchange for an offer of pardon made by Governor Earl LeRoy Brewer. The test was held from February 4, 1915 to April 19,1915. Six of the 11 convicts ( one was excused) developed pellagra, confirming suspicions that pellagra is caused by a deficiency of the B Vitamin niacin. Pellagra was common, particularly in the South, until news of this experiment became known by newspapers of the time.
    1921- birthday of author Betty Freidan, Peoria, IL, founder of the National Organization for Women ( NOW, author of the “Feminine Mystique.”
    1928- Regal Theater opens in Chicago, great jazz venue during the 1930’s,1940’s.
    1930-The first mosaic pavement similar to the mosaics of the ancient world was laid on Canal Street, New Orleans, LA. The mosaic effect was secured by mixing chipped meteorite, crown point spar, and mica with the cement, then pouring the mixture into diamond-shaped brass stripped forms, sanding it down and polishing it. It was part of the project referred to as the ‘Beautification of Canal Street.”
    1932- the third Winter Olympics opened at Lake Placid, NY, with 32 women and 274 men athletes representing 17 nations. This was the only edition of the Winter games in which athletes form the US won more medals ( six gold, four silver and two bronze) than athletes form any other country. The games closed on February 15th.]
    1933 -- Angered by increasing farm foreclosures, members of Iowa's Farmers Holiday Association threaten to lynch banking representatives and law officials who institute foreclosure proceedings for the duration of the Depression. In April at Primghar, 600 farmers battle the sheriff and his deputies to prevent a foreclosure. During the battle many farmers take a beating. A group of them then turn up at the courthouse, drag a district judge from his chair, put a rope around his neck, & threaten to hang him unless he promises not to issue any more eviction notices. That same month, when state officers in Crawford County are beaten and driven off, the Iowa governor put three counties under martial law, and the National Guard starts rounding up farmers who are fighting foreclosures. Farmers outside Sioux City did not cooperate with the association, selling produce at the best price they could, in addition, President Roosevelt promised farmers change and help.
The crisis here also help Roosevelt defeat Hoover.
    1934-Birthday of piano player Wade Legge, Huntington, WV

    1937-Glen Gray and Casa Loma Band record LarryCliniton’s “Study in Brown.”
    1938 Joe Beard Birthday
    1938 - Thornton Wilder's play, "Our Town", opened in New York City at the Henry Miller Theatre. The play won the writer a Pulitzer prize.
    1939 - World mile record-holder, Glenn Cunningham, said in a newspaper, "running a four-minute mile is beyond human effort," adding that the best mile run will always be 4:01.66. That mark has been since been broken several times. Jim Ryun did it on several occasions; and more recently a time of 3:44:39 was set by Noureddine Morceli from Algeria.
    1941- USO founded’ provides support worldwide for US service people and their families. The United Service Organizations (USO) centers have served as a home away from home for hundreds of thousands of Americans.
    1945-Birthday of tenor sax player John Stubblefield IV, Little Rock AR
    1947—Top Hits
For Sentimental Reasons - Nat King Cole
A Gal in Calico - Johnny Mercer
Oh, But I Do - Margaret Whiting
Rainbow at Midnight - Ernest Tubb
    1948- Vincent Fournier, better known as Alice Cooper, was born in Detroit. His rock 'n' roll horror show in the 1970's featured chicken-killing and snake-fondling while singing such songs as "Refrigerator Heaven" and "I'm Eighteen." Cooper went into semi-retirement in 1977, when alcohol problems forced him to undergo hospital treatment. He later returned to performing.
    1952 - Former baseball great, Jackie Robinson, was named Director of Communication for NBC, becoming the first black executive of a major radio-TV network.
    1953 - Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis took a dramatic turn when they starred in the film, "The Stooge", premiering at the Paramount Theatre in New York City.
    1955—Top Hits
Sincerely - McGuire Sisters
Hearts of Stone - Fontane Sisters
Melody of Love - Billy Vaughn
Let Me Go, Lover! - Hank Snow
    1955-- James Brown records “Please, Please, Please"
    1956-- Elvis Presley appears again on CBS' Dorsey Brothers Stage Show, performing "Baby, Let's Play House" and "Tutti Frutti."
    1957 - New York's Smith-Corona Manufacturing Inc. began to sell portable electric typewriters. The first "portable" machine weighed 19 pounds! Soon, other manufacturers began offering similar models that were made of lighter weight plastics.
    1959-- Following the tragic plane crash that claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper the night before, Frankie Avalon and Jimmy Clanton take over the headlining spots on the "Winter Dance Party" tour.
    1961 - The third great snowstorm of the winter season struck the northeastern U.S. Cortland NY received 40 inches of snow.
    1962- birthday of country singer Clint Black, born Katy, LA.
    1962-The first U.S. helicopter is shot down in Vietnam. It was one of 15 helicopters ferrying South Vietnamese Army troops into battle near the village of Hong My in the Mekong Delta. The first U.S. helicopter unit had arrived in South Vietnam aboard the ferry carrier USNS Core on December 11, 1961. This contingent included 33 Vertol H-21C Shawnee helicopters and 400 air and ground crewmen to operate and maintain them. Their assignment was to airlift South Vietnamese Army troops into combat.
    1963—Top Hits
Walk Right In - The Rooftop Singers
Hey Paula - Paul & Paula
The Night Has a Thousand Eyes - Bobby Vee
The Ballad of Jed Clampett - Flatt & Scruggs
    1964- The federal government put an end to one of the nation's more shameful bits of legislation by authorizing the Twenty-fourth Amendment, which effectively outlawed the poll tax. The tax stemmed back to the 1880s, when members of the burgeoning Populist party began to build a potentially potent coalition of African American and lower class white voters in the South. Across the region, planters, merchants, and industrialists moved to preserve their power and pushed for the passage of a deliberately prohibitive poll tax. The legislation, adopted by a host of Southern states, proved all too effective, as scores of African-Americans, as well as the "poorer sort" of whites, simply could not afford to pay the tax and thus lost the right to vote. However, thanks in large part to the efforts of Senator Spessard L. Holland of Florida, the once recalcitrant Congress slowly came around to the cause of outlawing the tax and passed the Twenty-fourth Amendment. On January 23, 1964, the amended was ratified by the South Dakota legislature, giving it the three-fourth majority necessary to make it the law of the land.
    1964 - United States weekly publication Newsweek was the first American magazine to carry a cover story on the Beatles.
    1965-Martin Luther King Jr. and 770 other protesters arrested in Selma, Alabama for picketing county courthouse to end discrim voting rights
    1966 -- Bill Graham's first non-benefit show. Also, about this time, author Ken Kesey disappears (to Mexico). Graham presents The Jefferson Airplane at the Fillmore Auditorium, 1805 Geary Street, in San Francisco, California.
    1968--- *GONZALEZ, ALFREDO Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company A, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein), FMF. Place and date: Near Thua Thien, Republic of Vietnam, 4 February 1968. Entered service at: San Antonio, Tex. Born: 23 May 1946, Edinburg Tex. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as platoon commander, 3d Platoon, Company A. On 31 January 1968, during the initial phase of Operation Hue City, Sgt. Gonzalez' unit was formed as a reaction force and deployed to Hue to relieve the pressure on the beleaguered city. While moving by truck convoy along Route No. 1, near the village of Lang Van Lrong, the marines received a heavy volume of enemy fire. Sgt. Gonzalez aggressively maneuvered the marines in his platoon, and directed their fire until the area was cleared of snipers. Immediately after crossing a river south of Hue, the column was again hit by intense enemy fire. One of the marines on top of a tank was wounded and fell to the ground in an exposed position. With complete disregard for his safety, Sgt. Gonzalez ran through the fire-swept area to the assistance of his injured comrade. He lifted him up and though receiving fragmentation wounds during the rescue, he carried the wounded marine to a covered position for treatment. Due to the increased volume and accuracy of enemy fire from a fortified machine gun bunker on the side of the road, the company was temporarily halted. Realizing the gravity of the situation, Sgt. Gonzalez exposed himself to the enemy fire and moved his platoon along the east side of a bordering rice paddy to a dike directly across from the bunker. Though fully aware of the danger involved, he moved to the fire-swept road and destroyed the hostile position with hand grenades. Although seriously wounded again on 3 February, he steadfastly refused medical treatment and continued to supervise his men and lead the attack. On 4 February, the enemy had again pinned the company down, inflicting heavy casualties with automatic weapons and rocket fire. Sgt. Gonzalez, utilizing a number of light antitank assault weapons, fearlessly moved from position to position firing numerous rounds at the heavily fortified enemy emplacements. He successfully knocked out a rocket position and suppressed much of the enemy fire before falling mortally wounded. The heroism, courage, and dynamic leadership displayed by Sgt. Gonzalez reflected great credit upon himself and the Marine Corps, and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
    1969 - 33-year-old John Madden became head coach of the NFL’s Oakland Raiders. In his first season Madden took the Raiders to a 12-1-1 record and earned them a spot in the AFC Conference Championship Game. Madden went on to become the youngest head coach in the modern NFL era to win 100 games in his first ten seasons.
    1969- owners of the 24 major league baseball clubs elected attorney Bowie Kuhn commissioner for a one-year term at a salary of $100,000. Kuhn, who succeeded William D. Eckert, became baseball’s fifth commissioner. He served until 1984 when he was replaced by Peter Ueberroth.
    1971—Top Hits
Knock Three Times - Dawn
Lonely Days - Bee Gees
Rose Garden - Lynn Anderson
Flesh and Blood - Johnny Cash
    1971- The Osmonds' "One Bad Apple" is certified gold
    1973-Birthday of boxer Oscar de La Hoya, Los Angeles, CA, Feb 4, 1973.
    1974 - Patricia Hearst, the 19-year-old daughter of publishing billionaire William Randolph Hearst, is kidnapped from her Berkeley, California, apartment. Stephen Weed, Hearst's fiancé‚, was beaten unconscious by the two abductors. Soon, a ransom demand came from the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA), a radical activist group led by Donald DeFreeze. DeFreeze had formed the SLA in 1973 after he escaped from prison. On November 6, 1973, the SLA shot and killed Marcus Foster, Oakland's superintendent of schools, with bullets laced with cyanide. Less than a month before Hearst's kidnapping, an SLA bomb-making factory was discovered by the police.
The SLA instructed William Hearst to distribute $70 million in food to the poor in Oakland to have Patty released. The Black Muslims, Malcolm X's former organization, were chosen to manage the food distribution, which turned into a riot when more than 10,000 people showed up and fought for the food. However, DeFreeze and the SLA did not release Patty. The Hearst story took a strange and unexpected turn two months after the abduction, when the SLA robbed the Hibernia Bank in San Francisco. The surveillance cameras clearly showed that Patty Hearst was one of the machine gun-toting robbers. Soon after followed a taped message from the SLA in which Hearst claimed that she had voluntarily joined the SLA and was now to be known as "Tania."
On May 17, 1974, police were tipped that the SLA leaders were at a Los Angeles home. With 400 police and FBI agents outside the house, a tremendous gun battle broke out. The overwhelming firepower of the police eventually caused a fire to break out. DeFreeze and five other SLA members died in the fire. However, Hearst was not inside the house. She was not found until September 1975. Patty Hearst was put on trial for armed robbery and convicted, despite her claim that she had been coerced, through repeated rape, isolation, and brainwashing, into joining the SLA. Prosecutors believed that she actually orchestrated her own kidnapping because of her prior involvement with one of the SLA members. Despite any real proof of this theory, she was convicted and sent to prison. President Carter commuted Hearst's sentence after she had served two years. Hearst is currently seeking a pardon.
    1976- US District Court Judge John W.Olvier upheld the ruling of a baseball arbitrator Peter Seitz that had declared pitchers Andy Messersmith and Dave McNally to be free agents. The two had refused to sign contracts for 1974 as a test case and had argued that baseball’s hallowed reserved clause bound them to their respective clubs, not in perpetuity but for only one year beyond the expiration of their last signed contract.
    1976 – A US Senate subcommittee reveals Lockheed Aircraft Corporation made payments abroad of $22 million in bribes to sell planes. Lockheed admits payments in Japan, Turkey, Italy and Holland.
    1977-"American Bandstand" celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary with an ABC-TV special hosted by Dick Clark. An incredible "all-star band" made up by Chuck Berry, Seals & Crofts, Gregg Allman, Junior Walker, Johnny Rivers, the Pointer Sisters, Charlie Daniels, Doc Severenson, Les McCann, Donald Byrd, Chuck Mangione and three quarters of Booker T and the MGs. They join and jam together for a rendition of "Roll Over Beethoven."
    1979—Top Hits
Le Freak - Chic
Y.M.C.A. - Village People
Da Ya Think I’m Sexy? - Rod Stewart
Why Have You Left the One You Left Me For - Crystal Gayle
    1983 - Singer Karen Carpenter died of heart failure due to anorexia nervosa at age 33, at her parents' home in Downey, California. The singer, who had performed with her brother, Richard, would be best-remembered for her songs (They Long to Be) Close to You and We've Only Just Begun, which dominated the songs of choice for weddings throughout the '70s and '80s. The untimely death of the young, velvet-throated Grammy Award winner saddened and shocked the world. Her death shed new light on the devastating consequences of anorexia, an eating disorder brought on by compulsive dieting. At one low point in Carpenter's career, she was forced to cancel a command performance before Queen Elizabeth II of England, and a concert tour of Europe and the Orient, due to the illness. Standing five feet, four inches, she had dieted down to 90 pounds.
    1987—Top Hits
At This Moment - Billy Vera & The Beaters
Open Your Heart - Madonna
Land of Confusion - Genesis
You Still Move Me - Dan Seals
    1987 -Sacramento Kings score only 4 points 1st quarter against the Lakers; fewest in a period since introduction of 24 second shot-clock in 1954
    1987- “Stars & Stripes”, skippered by Dennis Connor, defeated the Australian boat “Kookaburra III” for the fourth straight time to sweep the America’s Cup challenge and return the prized trophy to the US. This was the last Cup defense to be contested by 12-meter yachts. It came four years after Australia II with John Bertrand as skipper wrested the Cup from the US for the first time ever.
    1987 - Flamboyant pianist Liberace died at age 67 in his block-long palace in Palms Springs, California, officially of a brain disease, although it was a complication of AIDs. At one time, the entertainer was the highest-paid performer in Las Vegas.
    1988 - A winter storm produced heavy snow from the Upper Ohio Valley to New England, with up to 12 inches reported in Vermont and New Hampshire. Strong northerly winds in the Upper Midwest produced wind chill readings as cold as 60 degrees below zero.
    1989 - Two dozen cities in the south central and northwestern U.S. reported new record low temperatures for the date. The low of 14 below zero at Boise ID was a February record. A winter storm continued in the southwestern U.S. Alta UT reported 49 inches of snow in four days, Wolf Creek CO reported 66 inches in six days, including 28 inches in 24 hours, and up to 84 inches buried the ski resorts of northern New Mexico in three days.
    1990 - A winter storm produced heavy snow in the northeastern U.S. Snowfall totals in Maine ranged up to 13 inches at Gorham, with 11 inches reported at Portland. Totals in New Hampshire ranged up to 14 inches at Franconia, with 13 inches reported at Portsmouth. A mixture of snow, sleet and freezing rain caused numerous traffic accidents in eastern New York State resulting in three deaths and fourteen injuries. Subzero cold also gripped parts of the northeastern U.S. Caribou ME and Houlton ME reported morning lows of 15 degrees below zero.
    1996 - NBC aired the first of two parts of the mini-series Gulliver's Travels, starring Ted Danson as the title character. The venture, with its huge financial investment, had the potential for being a giant flop, but it was a gamble that paid off. The show was NBC's highest-rated miniseries in four years, and most critics praised its faithfulness to the Jonathan Swift tale.
    1997 –Simpson Guilty!!! A civil jury in Santa Monica, California found O.J. Simpson liable for the deaths of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ronald Goldman. The jury awarded $8.5 million in compensatory damages to Goldman’s parents. A few days later, the jury added $25 million in punitive damages to go to Nicole Brown Simpson's estate and Goldman’s father. Simpson was later ordered to give up his Heisman Trophy and nearly $500,000 in valuables, including his golf clubs, to help satisfy the judgment.
    1997- Mario Lemieux of the Pittsburgh Penguins scored into an empty net to become the seventh member of the NHL’s t00-goal club. Pittsburgh beat the Vancouver Canuks, 6-4. Players who previously scored 600 goals are Gordie Howe, Bobby Hull, Marcel Dionne, Phil Esposito, Mike Gartner and Wayne Gretzky, who got his 600th goal in his 720th game, one more than Lemieux required.
    1998-Microsoft founder/multi-billionaire Bill Gates gets a pie thrown in his face in Brussels Belgium.
    2001- Indianapolis Colts start Peyton Manning became just the third quarterback on NFL History to play in two Pro Bowls before his 25th birthday. Brett Favre and Drew Bledsoe were the other two.
    2002-- On the occasion of civil-rights activist Rosa Parks' 89th birthday, Stevie Wonder sings his song "Happy Birthday" to her at the premiere of her TV-movie biography The Rosa Parks Story. The song had originally been written by Wonder to help bring about a national Martin Luther King holiday.

XLI Feb. 4, 2007 Indianapolis 29, Chicago 17



Football Poem


IF you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream -- and not make dreams your master;
If you can think -- and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings -- nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And -- which is more -- you'll be a Man, my son!

Rudyard Kipling




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Daily Puzzle

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