In the wake of the New York Times story revealing photos of the outlandishly insensitive Halloween party at the Steve J. Baum law firm, both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac cut off the "foreclosure mill" firm, which now has to close down. The head of the company even sent whistle-blowing Times columnist Joe Nocera an angry email saying, "There is blood on your hands for this one, Joe… I will never, ever forgive you for this." Maybe Baum hasn't learned this quite yet, but those kinds of threats are a lot more intimidating when you own a solvent law firm. Which he doesn't anymore.
However, the loss of business seems to be more about the firm's sketchy and controversial business practices than its recent terrible PR, as Baum has long been under suspicion for misleading practices that detractors say led to numerous unfair foreclosures. Just last month, Baum was fined $2 million for practices that misled homeowners and hastened foreclosures.
Now, does this mean that the our broken financial system is magically fixed in favor of homeowners and sane business practices? No. Is it nice to make fun of anyone, however terrible, for losing their job right before the holidays? Most likely not. But I think we can all take a minute to feel warm and fuzzy that a business that took joy in mocking the people whose lives it destroyed was itself, you know… destroyed.