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American Casino a documentary by Leslie Cockburn

"American Casino" a documentary by Leslie Cockburn

Directed by level headed Leslie Cockburn, this documentary discusses the subprime mortgage crisis, where 300 mortgage companies have gone out of business since 2006, and the American dream turned nightmare, with up close interviews from people on both sides of the spectrum, Michael Greenberger, Director of Trading, Jeff Greene, a real estate mogul who shorted subprime, an anonymous ex-employee from Bear Sterns who discusses CDO's, or Collateralized debt obligations, and how they rated every deal, while praying that he would get wealthy and retire by the time this house of cards faltered, and a married African American schoolteacher with 4 children packing up his belongings from their Baltimore townhouse.

The film begins with introductory music, "The Party is Over My Friend", and continues down the road with Bruce Springsteen singing, "I ain't got no home now, I float from town to town, I ain't got no home in this world anymore.", and rap song, "Everybody's Broke".

Throughout the film a banker who doesn't take responsibility for what has taken place confesses, "I have worked for 4 companies on Wall Street, 3 of which, don't exist anymore, whereas, my grandfather worked for the same company his entire life."
Bill Omalley admitted to knowing what people earned and if they said they made 40,000 a year, we would put down 90,000 a year, CDO losses of 1.3 trillion, and interviews with mental health counselors, sharing how many people's financial problems have led to depression, phobias, domestic violence, drug use, loss of identity, loss of local friends, and safety.


Alex Bloomberg, This American Life,
Nouriel Roubini, Economist
Leslie Cockburn, Director
Andrew Cockburn, Producer
Mark Pittman: Reporter for Bloomberg,

Famed economist, professor, and womanizing partier, who teaches at the Stern School of Business at NYU, stated, "take away the punchbowl when the party gets going!". He blames people. "Blaming Wall Street is only part of the story", he stated. The Fed and Alan Greenspan, and people living beyond means, were also part of the problem".

While Director, Leslie Cockburn interjected, "I would just like to say one thing about ordinary people and that is real income has not gone up, people aren't earning the money, as they were, salaries have not gone up since the 70's, and they were still expected to pay these high mortgage payments."

Key Points:

No more investors left in the US other than the US Governement.
The 2008 bailout doubled the national debt.

The Director was angriest by the Bear Sterns defector, who "to understand CDO demand and when couldn't get loans had to get new loans, after loans made, loans were warehoused. People were told that their mortage would be less than their rent and were unaware of their terrible taxes and extra fees."

We as tax payers should know what the collaterol they have taken what are we paying for."

Where was line between securitization?
In the Securities industry, most deals are private placements.

Banks were setting up SIVS, or Structured Investment Vehicle's in The Cayman Islands.

Can people be punished?

Prosecute, people who misrepresent the health of their own fianances, banks would lose 40-50%. Haul them out in handcuffs.

Modification is a great idea, but tend to face value reduction and more regulations of financial services.

5 years from now, we'll learn our lesson

Hope that Congress, take a long look back,

Charlie Manger stated, "all derivitaives should be banned."

Sharon Abella from Tribeca


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