Congratulations! You are a majority shareholder for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac ! You know what really sucks about the foreclosure crisis? Falling home values. Do you what really sucks about falling home values? Underwater mortgages. Many of our members who are either facing eminent foreclosure or who already have been foreclosed upon owe or owed much more on their homes then they are worth or (more importantly) could ever be sold for. Reducing principal can prevent foreclosure and property values from declining further and yet it is often rejected by lending institutions. We would expect this from Wells Fargo or Bank of America, but what really irks us is that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac defend refuse to consider principal reduction. Their justification is since they are now 90% publically owned that principal reduction would be a sort of unauthorized gamble with taxpayer money. A few weeks ago we decided that someone ought to point out that “the taxpayers” are the ones losing their homes or at the least value in their homes due to this stubborn stance. We held a mock (we wish it had been real) shareholder meeting outside of housing court about whether or not Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac should reduce principal before foreclosure and after rent to former homeowners who can afford rent. We printed out huge stickers that proclaimed “I AM A MAJORITY SHARE HOLDER OF FANNIE MAE /FREDDIE MAC”. We stuck them on our backs and handed them out to the mass of protesters forming around the court. We did our theatrics as planned, but what was incredible to me was what happened inside the court room. After the demonstration some of the protestors and me went inside for a motion to compel hearing regarding two of our former homeowners who were in the process of being evicted by Fannie Mae. One of the court officers asked what are stickers said. it felt like a precarious moment-I thought do the protestors understand we work in the court and must maintain amicable relationships with the court faculty, are we about to get asked to leave or remove the stickers? To my delight she asked us if she could have a sticker! Then another court officer told us she had seen us outside and wanted to join us. The hearing went well and as we walked out the Fannie Mae lawyer made a snarky comment “since your shareholders I guess you guys can fire me”. Lastly before we entirely dispersed he looked at our lawyer and said “I didn’t know you had a posse”, but our lawyer corrected him and pointed to our two former homeowners and said “no, THEY have a posse”.