NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- So the banks are performing just spectacularly! Behemoths like Bank of New York Mellon ( BK) and regionals such as Fifth Third ( FITB), to name two that did the deed on Tuesday, are raising their dividends in such numbers that a list of banks not raising their dividends might be shorter than a list of dividend raisers.Word of that comes a few weeks after news of big bonuses to the likes of JPMorgan Chase's ( JPM) Jamie Dimon and Goldman Sachs' ( GS) Lloyd Blankfein. Splendid CEOs, doing great things for their shareholders. Let's have a show of hands: Is everybody happy with this state of affairs? And that includes you Citigroup ( C) shareholders, now that Citigroup has joined penny-stock hucksters and companies in bankruptcy in engineering a reverse split. I was wrestling with this, wondering whether it's fair to take banks to task for their profitability, guaranteed as it was in many cases by TARP rescue money and near-zero-interest borrowing from the Federal Reserve. It just seemed persnickety and mean-spirited. After all, isn't the recession that was a product of the banks' greed, and the housing crisis exacerbated by their recklessness, pretty much receding into the past? The most recent stats show unemployment claims are down. Perhaps we've turned a corner? Then, on Monday came word that shows just how outrageous, unjust, unfair, horrid, cruel and just plain disgraceful are those dividends, bonuses and unbridled banker prosperity. The National Association of Realtors released figures showing that housing remains as much mired in the muck as ever. Sales of previously owned homes plunged 9.6% in February over the month before. A shocking 40% of home sales are tangible expressions of misery, being either foreclosures or short sales of homes that are under water, sold for less than is owed to those merry, dividend-raising banks. To make the picture even more disgraceful, the median sales price declined 5.2%, the lowest since April 2002. Now, let's be clear that this isn't guilt by association or envy. In announcing the numbers, the National Association of Realtors' chief economist, Lawrence Yun, said home sales "are being constrained by the twin problems of unnecessarily tight credit, and a measurable level of contract cancellations" (emphasis added) caused by houses not appraising at the sale price. The latter is in many cases a product of the former -- banks don't lend so houses don't sell, so there are insufficient "comparables," so houses that are sold can't close because the appraisals are skewed by the lousy market.