People were being advised, by people who operate (by nature of their profession) as authorities in financial matters to enter agreements against their own best interest.
Why is it that everyone thinks the man trying to sell them a $500 TV is a scummy ripoff artist, and the man trying to sell them a $5000 used car is a scummy ripoff artist, but the person trying to sell them a $500,000 mortgage is a financial professional and their bestest buddy?
Jeezo pete, folks! The man on the other side of the desk is not your friend. His job is to get money from you. Your job is to read the fine print and squeeze nickels 'til the buffalo craps, not to roll over and sign whatever's put in front of you.