Other People’s Houses provides the clearest explanation yet of how the Financial Crisis of 2008 developed and why it could happen again.

"A must-read for anyone seeking to understand the causes of the last financial crisis and why we may very well be heading towards another."

Neil Barofsky
Former Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program and author of Bailout: An Inside Account of How Washington Abandoned Main Street While Rescuing Wall Street

"By unearthing the personal stories of homeowners, bankers, and regulators, Jennifer Taub shows that our recent financial crisis was no accident"

James Kwak
University of Connecticut School of Law, co-founder of the Baseline Scenario blog, and coauthor of 13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown and White House Burning: Our National Debt and Why it Matters to You.

"This is first-rate financial history."

Marty Fridson
CEO, FridsonVision LLC

"Taub exposes three decades of predatory lenders, greedy investors, and lax regulators, with a much-needed focus on the dire consequences of preventing bankruptcy judges from restructuring mortgage debt."

Julia Gordon
Dir. of Housing Policy, Center for American Progress

"A page-turner that reads like a Michael Lewis financial thriller, this bracing account of the roots of financial crises debunks stubborn myths with insight that would make Louis Brandeis proud."

Lawrence A. Cunningham
George Washington University, editor of The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America

"Taub argues persuasively how the seeds for the 2008 financial crisis were sown back in the 1980s as deregulation paved the way for the S&L debacle. But that was only an appetiser for even greater calamity later."

Mark Tran
The Guardian

"Meticulously argued and guaranteed to raise the blood pressure of the average American taxpayer."

Kirkus Reviews

"Over the years I’ve read a tall stack of books about the financial crisis. Other People’s Houses, by Vermont Law School professor Jennifer Taub, provides the clearest, beginning-to-end explanation I’ve seen of what went wrong."

Pat Regnier
Money Magazine

"Provides a concise, clear, and compelling account."

Glenn C. Altschuler
Huffington Post

"Taub's cogently written, accusatory work will interest a wide readership."

Library Journal

"Highly recommended. . .Taub does an excellent job retelling and reframing a reasonably well-known story to make it fresh and interesting, and makes a strong case tying the 2008 crisis to the 1980s deregulation."

Adam Levitin
Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center

"Brilliant account of the housing crisis and its lingering impact."

Frank A. Pasquale III
Professor of Law, University of Maryland, Francis King Carey School of Law

"A compelling narrative that keeps the reader's attention from cover to cover . . .It is a must read for anyone interested in understanding and reforming our broken financial system."

Timothy Canova
Professor of Law and Public Finance, Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center

Jennifer Taub is the author of financial crisis book Other People’s Houses. Formerly an associate general counsel at Fidelity Investments, Taub’s research and writing focuses on corporate governance and financial market regulation. Taub is a graduate of Harvard Law School and Yale College and a professor of law at Vermont Law School, where she teaches Contracts, Corporations, Securities Regulation, and White Collar Crime. She resides in Northampton, Massachusetts.

perpetual crisis

a blog on banking, corporate governance, and financial market reform.

December 11, 2016

the #divestdonald movement

Inspired by a bipartisan group of legal ethicists and Constitutional scholars including Kathleen Clark, Norm Eisen, Richard Painter, Stephen Schooner, Zephyr Teachout, and Laurence Tribe, on November 20, 2016, I launched the hashtag #DivestDonald. In the morning I informed friends on Facebook that I planned to use it later that day on Twitter. A few headed over first.

This simple phrase, #divestdonald, is designed to draw public attention to how Donald Trump is poised to violate the Constitution on day one of his presidency. In particular, the foreign Emoluments Clause, found in  Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the Constitution forbids a President from taking any payment from a foreign government or official unless Congress first approves. This would include payments for hotel rooms and licensing fees. It would also include any of the joint ventures Trump’s operations have with foreign governments. Because he is either the sole or principal owner of his numerous global businesses, when he operates them he is in direct violation.

This is a case of both monumental corruption and historical significance.  When a President takes the oath of office, he solemnly swears to “faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of  [his] ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Yet, Trump would be defying the Constitution. For more details, please read this bipartisan letter, sent to Donald Trump on December 9, 2016.

Quite quickly following the November 20th launch, many adopted the hashtag. For example, on November 21, Larry Tribe tweeted: #divestdonald is a constitutional mandate not just of the Emoluments Clause but also of the Faithfully Execute Clause.

What follows is a Facebook post from December 7, 2016. That was Day 29 following the Presidential election. I have been maintaining the habit of writing a status each day with inspiration and calls to action. This will last at least until January 20, 2021, which will be Day 1,534.

* * * * * * *

Day 29: Are you wondering how I find joyful purpose in #DivestDonald. What is the endgame. How do we measure success? Should we feel defeated when Trump takes office and continues to help his family profit off the presidency. When he continues to be a walking, talking violation of the Constitution? Here are my answers to those questions.

The endgame: I believe #DivestDonald it’s not a game, it’s a marketing message and a political movement.

By using it every day, we brand Trump as the monumentally corrupt person he is. It reminds us that he is our crony capitalist in chief. The words #DivestDonald are a constitutional imperative and a demand for what he needs to do with his business.

The hashtag #DivestDonald has another meaning too. It signifies that We the People need to divest of him as president and put someone better in office.

The Better Vision: When America finally divests of Donald. What will we get? We must begin to shape that now. For me, this vision involves five key things.

Shared prosperity & a living wage
Equal rights and dignity
Debt-free higher education
Healthcare through single-payer
Banking that is not too big to fail

To realize this vision, I believe we must #DivestDonald who plans to privatize the gains and socialize the losses in these key areas. He wishes to reward himself, his family, and his cronies.


Professor Jennifer Taub moderating an all-star panel following Senator Elizabeth Warren’s keynote address at the “Five Years On, Learning Lehman’s Lessons from the Panic of 2008,” event sponsored by Better Markets and George Washington School of Law. Panelists include (from l to r) Professor James Galbraith; former Special Inspector General of the TARP, Neil Barofsky; Professor John Coffee, Jr.; and former Senator Ted Kaufman.