Follow the debt

From the Times of Trenton:

Bankruptcy lawyers’ business booming

With real estate activity in a deep freeze, a deviation of the famous mantra is being whispered in law firms throughout New Jersey: Follow the debt.

McCarter & English, the state’s largest law firm, will announce today it’s ramping up its workout practice by hiring Charles Stanziale, one of the state’s top bankruptcy lawyers, to concentrate on what promises to be a growth industry with the national and state economy in a recession.

“In these uncertain financial and economic times, there is an increased demand for lawyers with expertise in restructuring and debt management,” McCarter & English chairman Drew Barry said.

Lawyers, too, go where recessions take them. Personal bankruptcy filings are skyrocketing this year, and corporate filings are trending up, though not as dramatically, being that there is historically a one-year lag between an economic downturn and corporate insolvency.

Many McCarter real estate attorneys, who in recent years were consumed with acquisitions and closings, will now be assigned to help Stanziale liquidate real estate holdings in bankruptcy cases, Barry said.

“The current lack of real estate work will be made up for with restructuring work,” he said.

Cole Schotz in recent months has hired eight insolvency lawyers, bringing the number of that team to more than 30 in New Jersey, Wilmington, Baltimore and New York. They are looking to hire more, Sirota said.

One trend Sirota sees in the current economic downturn is a bit more humility from banks who are trying to keep their balance sheets in order.

“The (bankruptcy) filings would be even more fast and furious, except for the fact that lenders are now more willing to settle than go through liquidation in the courts,” he said.

Scrivo said his firm’s “robust” bankruptcy practice has recently added two attorneys in its Philadelphia office and is “always looking” to add more, particularly in this economic climate. The firm is involved in several commercial foreclosures that are headed to bankruptcy, he said.

“I’m guessing,” he said, “we’re going to see more.”

This entry was posted in Economics, Foreclosures, Housing Bubble, New Jersey Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

477 Responses to Follow the debt

  1. Jersey Jim says:

    First?

  2. grim says:

    From the Star Ledger:

    Report says Wall Street woes lead to New York region job cuts

    A broad array of businesses across the New York region have begun eliminating jobs by the thousands as the pain of the financial crisis spreads well beyond Wall Street, according to a report in the New York Times.

    The report said companies including Yahoo, American Express, Time and Swissport Cargo Services at Kennedy International Airport say they are preparing to lay off employees, including online ad sales representatives, magazine editors and baggage handlers. Economists and labor-market analysts predict that the cuts will be part of a large wave of pink slips that is expected to drive up the city’s unemployment rate and strain the state’s unemployment insurance fund.

  3. grim says:

    From the NY Times:

    Layoffs Sweep From Wall St. Across New York Area

    Economists and labor-market analysts predict that the cuts will be part of a large wave of pink slips that is expected to drive up the city’s unemployment rate and strain the state’s unemployment insurance fund. In the week that ended Oct. 11 — the latest week for which data is available — New York led all states with an increase of 5,224 first-time unemployment claims.

    Law firms are shrinking and publishing companies, which employ about 54,000 people in the city, announced layoffs of about 880 employees this week. Other service businesses, like consulting, catering and tourism, are almost certain to follow suit, said James Brown, who analyzes the city’s job market for the New York State Department of Labor.

    “The professional fields are going to feel the impact of falling corporate profits,” Mr. Brown said. “We have a lot of firms in professional services and they sell to corporations nationally and internationally. With corporate profits dropping, their business is weakening. I expect them to start losing jobs soon.”

    Those cuts would come on top of the layoffs of tens of thousands on Wall Street, which is in the midst of its most wrenching changes in decades. .

  4. Shore Guy says:

    Folowing-up on a theme from yesterday, local government, in this day and age it is absurd for business meetings to NOT be streamed over the internet.

  5. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    U.S. Economy Probably Contracted as Consumer Spending Dropped

    The U.S. economy probably shrank in the third quarter by the most since the 2001 recession just as Americans were deciding how to cast their ballots in the Nov. 4 elections.

    Gross domestic product contracted at a 0.5 percent annual rate from July to September, according to the median forecast of 75 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. The figure, the last major piece of economic data before the presidential election, compares with growth of 2.8 percent in the previous three months.

    The Commerce Department’s GDP report is due at 8:30 a.m. in Washington; Bloomberg survey estimates range from a 1.2 percent rate of expansion to a contraction of 1.9 percent. The Federal Reserve yesterday warned of further “downside risks’ even after cutting interest rates twice this month and pumping billions of dollars into markets.

  6. NJGator says:

    Re yard signs in Glen Ridge. I stand corrected. This morning on Ridgewood Ave we saw a house with a big Sarah! sign.

  7. grim says:

    From the NYT:

    Government Said to Be Discussing Plan to Aid Homeowners

    Senior Bush administration officials are discussing a plan that could help up to three million homeowners struggling to pay their mortgages to stay in their homes, three people briefed on the proposal said Wednesday.

    The initiative could be the most sweeping government effort directed at mortgage borrowers since the financial crisis began last year. Under the plan, the government would agree to shoulder half of the losses on home loans if mortgage companies agreed to lower borrowers’ monthly payments for at least five years, according to the people briefed on the plan who asked not to be named because details were still being negotiated.

    Officials from the Treasury Department and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation are working on the proposal and an announcement may come soon. Sheila C. Bair, the chairwoman of the F.D.I.C., has been the leading proponent of the plan and first discussed the idea publicly a week ago.

    The plan could cost $40 billion to $50 billion and would be part of the $700 billion financial bailout package that Congress approved earlier this month. The money would go toward covering future losses on loans that are modified according to standards established by the government.

    The program is intended to entice more mortgage servicing companies that handle billings and collections to reduce payments for homeowners by lowering interest rates, writing down loan balances or changing other loan terms.

    So far, many companies have been reluctant to aggressively reduce payments because they are afraid that borrowers might default again or that investors in mortgage securities might file suit.

    By offering to shoulder half of any future losses, the government hopes to stabilize the housing market. At the end of June, nearly one in 10 mortgages was delinquent or in foreclosure.

  8. Frank says:

    Clotpoll,
    Were you a maid few years ago? Is Grimm still your boyfriend?

    “Maid-Turned-Realtor Masterminded Las Vegas Mortgage Scam, Prosecutors Say”

    “Eve Mazzarella was a Las Vegas success story. The high-school dropout and former housemaid moved to the Nevada city in 2000 from Seattle, got a certificate from the ABC Real Estate School and started selling houses in what would become the hottest market in the country.

    In 2006, Mazzarella recorded sales of $13.8 million and made the National Association of Realtors’ “30 Under 30” list, which names the best young agents in the nation. Mazzarella started her own company, Distinctive Real Estate & Investments Inc., in December 2003. She whipped around town in a Mercedes-Benz sport utility vehicle. She planned to build a three-story office building in Vegas’s shabby downtown north of the Strip and preserve a historic house on the site by lifting it onto the roof. ”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=aGYlBrRCgtq0&refer=home

  9. NJGator says:

    Grim 3 – Gator recently turned down a job offer from one of the companies mentioned in the NYT layoff article. I’m feeling pretty good about that decision now.

  10. BC Bob says:

    Help! My charts are upside down.

    “BOB is annoying Says:
    November 29th, 2006 at 5:04 pm
    bob:

    i’m glad you know so much about me.

    in fact I AM buying now…i think there are certain good deals out there…and i have NEVER lost money on real estate and I have owned a lot.

    but this has nothing to do w/ putting my money where my mouth is…is has to do w/ all fo you denying simple facts.

    the facts are what they are today, not in a year from now.”

  11. John says:

    So two of my daughters who inherited very little from me as they are beautiful and smart on Monday have been selected to meet Mr. O himself!!! I knew he was getting tough on getting votes but I must be the last person in the US thinking of voting for John and Cindy

  12. John says:

    If you count in inflation, taxes, maintenance and mortgage interest and lost use of funds you might not have made as much as you think.

  13. Stu says:

    Anyone catch O on the Daily show last night? Regardless of your political beliefs, O was a fantastic interview off script. Although asked jokingly, Jon Stewart asked some extremely tough questions of the chosen one.

    http://www.thedailyshow.com/video/index.jhtml?videoId=189758&title=intro-obama-magic&episodeId=189757

  14. Stu says:

    # Stu Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    October 30th, 2008 at 8:28 am

    Anyone catch O on the Daily show last night? Regardless of your political beliefs, O was a fantastic interview off script. Although asked jokingly, Jon Stewart asked some extremely tough questions of the chosen one.

    http://www.thedailyshow.com/video/index.jhtml?videoId=189758&title=intro-ob*ma-magic&episodeId=189757

    replace the * with an a for the interview.

  15. Stu says:

    GDP and unemployment #s out in a few minutes.

  16. Frank says:

    GDP @ -0.3 and you call this a recession?
    Bring it on.

  17. BC Bob says:

    Happy to see the multitude of liquidty vehicles and Benny pressing the medal, are having a positive effect.

    NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Mortgage rates bounded higher this week, with the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate soaring from 6.32% to 6.77%, according to a Bankrate.com weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage had an average of 0.39 discount and origination points, it said. The average 15-year fixed rate mortgage jumped to 6.46%, while the average jumbo 30-year fixed rate climbed to 7.95%. Adjustable mortgage rates were mixed, with the average one-year ARM dipping to 6.09%, and the average 5/1 ARM increasing to 6.67%.

  18. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    U.S. 3Q GDP falls 0.3% annualized vs. -0.5% expected

    U.S. 3Q consumer spending falls 3.1%, worst in 28 years

    U.S. 3Q core inflation up 2.9%, most in 2 years

    U.S. 3Q business investment falls 1.0%

    U.S. 3Q final sales down 0.8%, worst in 17 years

    Exports, inventories, government spending add to 3Q GDP

    U.S. 3Q disposable incomes fall 8.7%, 59-year low

  19. BC Bob says:

    “U.S. 3Q consumer spending falls 3.1%, worst in 28 years”

    “U.S. 3Q disposable incomes fall 8.7%, 59-year low”

    Frank,

    What do you call it? A dress rehaersal?

  20. John says:

    The International Association of Financial Engineers is pleased to invite you to

    Lessons from the Subprime Market:
    Implosion and its Consequences
    A Credit Risk Committee Event

    November 10, 2008

    PricewaterhouseCoopers
    300 Madison Avenue (at 42nd Street)
    New York
    Sponsored by
    DSTi’s Askari Risk Solutions

    Panelists:
    Michel Crouhy, Natixis
    David Rowe, SunGard & IAFE Board Member
    Til Schuerman, Federal Reserve Bank of New York

    Event Description:

    There is plenty of blame to go around in the current crisis. At it’s root, however, has been a failure to focus on some fundamental principles.

    – One is a failure to recognize the unavoidable uncertainty surrounding estimates deep in the tail of distributions based on limited data.

    – Another is a lack of structural imagination in assessing the likely consequences of contingent events such as a general fall in housing prices.

    – A third is failure to consider how the success of some innovations alters the environment in ways that undermine the continuation of that success.

    – A fourth is failure to consider what alternate means of valuation exist for various products if liquidity evaporates and how effective these alternate valuation methods are likely to be.

    An serious consequence of these combined failures is a situation where the fair value of a significant portion of bank assets is in doubt and where this doubt translates directly into uncertainty about the level of bank capital.

    Registration:
    This is a free event, but space is limited. Please register by 5pm on Friday, November 7, 2008. Click here or visit http://www.iafe.org to register for this event.

  21. BC Bob says:

    rehearsal

  22. grim says:

    Mortgage rates bounded higher this week, with the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate soaring from 6.32% to 6.77%

    All about the spread, mmmmm spread. Mortgage execs need to eat too you know.

  23. HEHEHE says:

    Frank – careful what you wish for:) Hahaha

  24. Stu says:

    “U.S. 3Q consumer spending falls 3.1%, worst in 28 years”

    This will be the real killer of the economy. As unemployment continues to kick up, the consumer spending will continue to drop. What percentage of the GDP is driven by consumer spending? 70 percent. Yikes!

  25. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    U.S. Economy Shrank in the Third Quarter as Spending Dropped

    The U.S. economy shrank in the third quarter by the most since the 2001 recession as the record two- decade expansion in consumer spending came to an end.

    Gross domestic product contracted at a less-than-forecast 0.3 percent annual pace from July to September, according to a Commerce Department report today in Washington. The figure, the last major piece of economic data before the presidential election, follows a 2.8 percent growth rate the prior quarter.

    “Almost all components of the economy are faltering,” Carl Riccadonna, a senior economist at Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. in New York, said before the report. “The fourth quarter is going to be much worse as the crescendo of financial disruption reached a high point this month. We’re going to have a prolonged recession.”

  26. grim says:

    (cont)

    The 6.4 percent rate of decline in spending on non-durable goods, like clothing and food, was the biggest since 1950.

  27. Stu says:

    Frank… 2.8 to .3? At this pace we’ll be at -2.5 withing three months if the trend were to continue. At -2.5 the layoffs will be fast and furious. Of course in your mind, NJ’s GDP is somewhere around 10%.

  28. BC Bob says:

    The consumer is tapped/buried. With the continuing decimation of the housing market and 401K losses, there will be an unprecedented retrenchment. Very troubling for an economy that’s consumer driven. On the flip side, our current account defecit should start to shrink.

    It’s time we start building savings and stop exporting $3B a day. It’s our only hope.

  29. 3b says:

    #11 BC Bob: Are you buying?

  30. NJGator says:

    John 12 – The O folks are taking nothing for granted. I just got a call this week that they needed volunteers in W Orange. There’s not a snowball’s chance in hzll that O will lose in Essex County or that it will even be close. In fact, any of the below are more likely to happen:

    1 Nom relinquishes his beloved guns and takes a job in the O administration.
    2. Someone buys Ducky’s house for OLP.
    3. A non-troll on this board buys a house for over 2005 comps.
    4. You are at a loss for words.
    5. Stu regains his hair.

    They are working towards an EV and popular vote landslide. Unlike Kerry, they are running in all 50 states and are trying to use coat tails to make bigger gains in the House and Senate. They just might get it.

  31. BC Bob says:

    Only a bird brain would cheer this report. That’s right, he has.

  32. Stu says:

    Bad math…I forgot the negative. Similar drop next quarter would put us at -3.8. And if the 1st consumer stimulus package didn’t occur (bond and rebate scheme), we’d probably have officially been in recession since Q1 ’08.

  33. grim says:

    Stu,

    Keep in mind that 2.8% cost us $168 billion dollars in stimulus rebates.

  34. BC Bob says:

    3b [29],

    Read closely, That was a post by BIA in 2006. At that time he never lost on a RE deal and was all bulled up/buying. Wonder where he has been?

  35. grim says:

    Beat me to it

  36. Stu says:

    3B: I will use any pop today to sell off any of my remaining longs. My magic eight ball says big rally today and equally large sell off into the close. Unless of course, I regain my hair.

  37. chicagofinance says:

    Victorian Says:
    October 29th, 2008 at 8:27 pm
    Chifi likes to term us as anarchists/nihilists, but I have been seriously looking to find a bullish case for America. But so far, I have nothing. 70% of our GDP is due to consumers fueled by the credit bubble.

    I cannot see what the next engine of growth is going to be. I would still be confident, because I have seen the innovation and the work ethic of the American people.

    Vic: fair points….but the bullish case for America is built on relative terms, not absolute ones. Sounds kind of weak? Maybe, but in this case…to use a cliche….in the land of the blind, the one eyed man rules…..

  38. 3b says:

    #34 BC Bob. Sorry. He is probably hanging with pret, or maybe Richard.

  39. John says:

    Nonsense, my daughter lost some of her monopoly money too!!! 401K and Housing is pretend money, not real money. I am never cashing out of my housing so unless the thought my kids will get less inheritance keeps me up at night what does that have to do with spending. Also Old people don’t spend anyhow, once they hit 50 you need a crowbar to pry open their wallet, they are the ones with big 401K hits.

    As long as people have good jobs and money in the bank they will spend. If people had too much money in risky equities in their 401K and were not properly diversified or leverage themselves to the max in housing they never had money to begin with. It was just phony balony monopoly money. The one thing I did see though is the cops, fireman, clerks, landscapers, wannabees who leveraged themselves to the max via liar loans are not shut out of blue ribbon neighborhoods and are back living in neighborhoods they can afford. People in snooty neighborhoods with rather have the right type of neighbors than joey the bus driver from brooklyn with his secretrary wife snapping gum, clicking their cappezos and revving their monte SS on their front lawn even if Joey with his inflated countrywide liar loans brought up prices an extra 20%, them leaving town only hurt the guy who sells lotto, tall boys, racing dailies and the NY post.

    BC Bob Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 8:43 am
    The consumer is tapped/buried. With the continuing decimation of the housing market and 401K losses, there will be an unprecedented retrenchment. Very troubling for an economy that’s consumer driven. On the flip side, our current account defecit should start to shrink.

    It’s time we start building savings and stop exporting $3B a day. It’s our only hope.

  40. grim says:

    Capezios, very nice.

  41. BC Bob says:

    “As long as people have good jobs and money in the bank they will spend.”

    John,

    Please stop your nonsense. Just analyze what you said.

  42. Stu says:

    BC…Noticed that same line as well.

  43. Stu says:

    At times, I see John as a little out of touch with the common man. I think he made need to get back to his roots.

  44. All Hype says:

    Who is this guy Frank? He seems like a retarded Larry Kudlow or Donald Luskin wannabe…

  45. BC Bob says:

    Stu,

    If John Q has a negative savings rate, his only option at the bank is to rob it.

  46. grim says:

    Times like these I thank my lucky stars that our economy is chock full of good paying jobs and overflowing savings accounts.

  47. Stu says:

    DJIA futures up 311. It appears that Frank’s perception matches those of Wall Street’s. Frank, did you work at Lemon Brothers?

  48. 3b says:

    BC Bob: Your post from last night, listed below. Thsi is what I have been screaming about for the last few weeks.

    I would think that The NAR,and realtors in general would be screaming in opposition to this.

    “Also, new buyers, if this passes, would be prudent to add this into the equation.”

  49. John says:

    No nonsense, the HS dropout mortgage brokers are unemployed, the HS Drop out RE Brokers are unemployed the crooked bankers and brokers are unemployed, the Monster kill the enviorment SUV salesment are unemployed, the illegals and shady off the book contractors are unemployed. Good Riddance!!!!!!! Calling that a problem is like saying when crime is down it is a bad thing as the crooks don’t have money to spend.

    BC Bob Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 8:55 am
    “As long as people have good jobs and money in the bank they will spend.”

    John,

    Please stop your nonsense. Just analyze what you said.

  50. Shore Guy says:

    “70% of our GDP is due to consumers fueled by the credit bubble.”

    The solution to the problem of maxed-out consumers unable to spen our way out of recession is clear — the Fed must pay off all outstanding credit card balances. Of course, much like the other stimuli that have occurred or are planned, this will do nothing to benefit the people who acted prudently and did not go into debt. But, hey, this is the new paradigm where no one is allowed to feel the pain from their own bad decision making and the prudent get stuck with the tab.

    Thank you Washington, may I have another?

  51. grim says:

    From the Record:

    Agents finding opportunity amid housing rubble

    The case was severe, but the storyline as told by real estate agent Karim Dawli is all too common in some areas of North Jersey: A bus driver with a modest income got a mortgage three years ago to buy a $420,000 house in Passaic.

    Today, with payments on her adjustable loan soaring, she is months behind on her mortgage, facing possible foreclosure and desperate for a solution. Dawli is working with her to arrange a deal that may bring in a far lower price than she paid but get her out from under her mortgage, he said.

    “This case is extreme,” said Dawli, an agent with Re/Max Properties in Tenafly. “It was definitely a house she could not afford from the get-go.” But, he said, “there are a lot of cases out there like that.”

    U.S. Census Bureau data show that about one in five Bergen and Passaic county homeowners spent at least half their income on housing in 2007, compared with one in eight in 2000. Nearly a third spent at least 40 percent of their income on their homes. Meanwhile, the number of homeowners facing possible foreclosure tripled in North Jersey to almost 3,000 in the first five months of 2008 from about 1,000 over the same period a year ago.

    Hardest hit are lower-income areas such as Paterson, Passaic and Clifton, where distressed properties represent 30 percent to 50 percent of homes for sale, Tselepis said.

    While Dawli now focuses on short sales, Tselepis took things a step further, starting a three-person business to handle those transactions. It made sense, he said, because foreclosure listings were overwhelming some of his agents. Short sales can take months of negotiation and paperwork between buyers, sellers and lenders, he said.

    “I feel I’m offering a solution,” he said.

    Eventually, Dawli and other agents said, business will return to normal. But they don’t predict when. “I don’t see any sign of change for at least another year,” Dawli said.

  52. 3b says:

    #39 John: And you work on Wall St?? Let me tell you more than a few Wall St types, are going to be living in towns they never would have imagined.

    Plus some people may finally wake up and realize that one town with average SAT scores 20 pts higher than the town next door, ain’t worth an extra 100K for the same POS Cape.

    These are different days either you are just kidding, or you live in some pararell universe.

  53. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Wall Street’s Jobless Return to B-School, Mixing Purple Hooters

    Bryan Gunderson tried to master the intricacies of structured-equity investments until he lost his job at JPMorgan Chase & Co. Now he’s learning the subtleties of Purple Hooters.

    After collecting his last severance check in August and getting no job offers from more than 100 resumes he sent to friends, companies and employment agencies, the 25-year-old graduate of Loyola College in Maryland decided to go to B-school — for bartending.

    “It’s come to the point where, yes, I need another job,” said Gunderson, who has a bachelor’s degree in finance and is looking for bartending work. “I always frequent bars, so why not be on the other side?” he said in an interview at New York Bartending School in Manhattan.

    Gunderson lost his job amid a credit crisis that threatens to eliminate 165,000 jobs in New York City in the next 24 months, including 35,000 in the financial industry, according to the city’s comptroller.

  54. Stu says:

    Jobless claims for the week ending October 25 totaled 479,000, which is even with the prior week and slightly ahead of the consensus estimate.

    How long before this number reaches 500K?

  55. RentinginNJ says:

    I cannot see what the next engine of growth is going to be.

    Government.
    Renewable energy and infrastructure will be the new “New Deal”.

  56. Cindy says:

    John – To give you a dose of the “everyday” folk – let me share my story today. I am discontinuing my 403bs – not much but something – because I have no savings. After the computer broke, now the water heater (cold showers for two days) I have to tap my Christmas savings. So there goes that.

    I long to pay off my debt but I live on – get this – $350.00 a month as it is. Probably what you spend on a weekend dinner. That’s right – $350. for food, entertainment, hair cuts – you name it for an entire month.

    I tried to be responsible and save a bit extra for when I retire – but at 60 – that date has been pushed out. I need to guard my health at this point and save in my Roth – pay off debt. The market is so volatile – I actually feel my health is at risk.

    The everyday folk are hurting John – even the responsible ones. I haven’t had a raise in two years and now there are talks of wage cuts because CA has to do mid-year
    cuts to education.

    There is no where else for me to trim costs – I drive a 2001 Hyndai – I enjoy wonderful evenings do to the kindness of good friends – but this everyday folk is tapped out – mentally and financially.

  57. Pat says:

    John, you started watching the Married with Children reruns again?

    Did you know the original run was ’87 to ’97 as in this:

    http://mysite.verizon.net/vodkajim/housingbubble/new_york.html

  58. Shore Guy says:

    This morning, Mrs. Shore and I were discussing RE. Looking at the numbers we chuckeled at the fact that we are “qualified,” within the stringent old-time parameters for a $1,000,000 mortgage. I say chuckled because, even though we could easily meet the payments and associated costs of such a loan, we would never take on debt 1/3 that size.

    It ia sbout time that more people learn that just because one qualifies for a loan of a certain size does not mean that one should actually take on that debt level.

    Having undersized debt to income brings with it certain benefits, especially in times like this, such as the ability to sleep without financial worries despite six-figure drops in income and six-figure unrealized losses in equities.

    I cannot imagine the fear and concern coursing through families where two incomes are needed just to make ends meet. Worrying one’s self to death over paying the mortgage, taxes, commuting costs, etc., just for the benefit of living in any small geographic area is madness.

  59. lena says:

    American Express did their chop chop yesterday with more to come in January. Add those heads to the list.

  60. Shore Guy says:

    “one in five Bergen and Passaic county homeowners spent at least half their income on housing in 2007, compared with one in eight in 2000.”

    Egads! Even 1 in 8 is absurdly high. Hey, I love the NJ/NY area as much as the next NJ native but, c’mon people, there are pleanty of nice places to live in the United States that provide a higher quality of life, allow one to max-out 401k plans, and require a smaller percentage of income for housing.

  61. Pat says:

    Cindy, it’s not just everyday folk who don’t have the spaghetti these days.

    My SIL artist with the mansion on the beach is starting a new business…watching sick kids so their parents (who work several jobs now) can go to work.

    Not many peeps are ording portraits these days.

  62. Cindy says:

    (60) Pat – I hear you. I have done everything I knew to do to be responsible – my home – purchased in 1999 is only 1100 sq. ft. so my utilities are low. When I purchase anything, it is at a discount. I haven’t bought any new clothes in a year. I am wearing what I have until it is worn out. I will drive my car until it dies. But I can’t save anything anymore. The only option I have left is to forgo saving for retirement. (Except the $500.00 a month for my Roth! – That stays!)

  63. Cindy says:

    Oh and the accounts for the grandkids – I won’t give those up…

  64. renter says:

    Shore,

    It isn’t so easy for people to leave. It is hard to get a job. The midwest has been in recession for years. I have so many friends who wish they could go home to the Midwest but can’t secure employment. Places like Youngstown Oh are ghost towns.

  65. Pat says:

    A nearby church has a giant Fall and Spring rummage sale.

    When I arrived, there were more than 100 people in line waiting for the thing to start. One person perused the outside stuff, one stood in line. Then, there was a mad rush to put reserved stickers on items.

    The parking lot was filled with pickups and those flat trailers gardeners use.

    The next day, I found at least twenty ads on cl for things I saw there. One of the items had been purchased by a woman driving a florists van.

    People are very adaptable.

  66. william says:

    (8)—Frank that’s actually a pretty hilarious post you put up there :)

  67. Shore Guy says:

    Renter,

    I understand but there are pleanty of places that are reasonable alternatives to NJ that people will not even consider because it is not within 70 miles of The Plaza. I have a friend who was offered a position out of NJ, at about a 10% pay cut. He would have had better benefits and housing costs so low that, instead of a mortgage, he would have a paid-off home plus money to spare to invest or pay off every other debt he had at the time. He refused to go because “I’m from Jersey. What am I gonna do there?” It was folly. Now, he is upside down on his mortgage, has lost his job, and the taxes are not going down with his reduced income.

    I am not suggesting a mass exodus. That said, people should be open to the possibilities outside our neck of the woods.

  68. Clotpoll says:

    Stu (36)-

    Any rally today will lop off the latecomers at the knees. This is one to short heavily.

  69. Cindy says:

    On a happier note – Grim – I sure hope you liked your limericks last night. Clot and I had a boat load of fun…

  70. Clotpoll says:

    Or, to put it another way, today’s rally feels like it’s being fueled by a million Franks.

  71. watergapnomad says:

    @67

    That’s the truth. We’ve become so comfortable and unwilling to sacrifice. It’s as if we feel living where we were born is a God given right.

    It seems to me that if you look back fifty to one hundred years ago, moving from one state to another in search of better opportunities was pretty much the standard. Why are we so resistant to it nowadays?

  72. Clotpoll says:

    There was an old whore from Lahore,
    Who did donkey shows, ‘cept with boars.
    When confronted by Frank,
    His nether parts dank,
    Laid her passed out cold on the floor.

  73. william says:

    57—-BINGO Shore—–Why do you think so many Americans are emotional wrecks and so many kids are screwed up today…Hello! Paxil, Zoloft, Wellbutrin, Effexor, Lexapro, Celexa…..They were invented to deaden the pain so Americans could get out of bed and trudge on to work to keep this machine rolling

  74. Clotpoll says:

    gapper (71)-

    I sacrifice valuable time to post here.

  75. Shore Guy says:

    One envisions brokers calling clients telling them that the bottom has been reached and the rate cut and planned bailouts present a unique opportunity to buy.

  76. Clotpoll says:

    will (73)-

    You are edging close to some very uncomfortable truths.

  77. skep-tic says:

    heard on NPR this morning that northeastern homeowners are the most irrational in the country regarding house values. According to Zillow, 55% believe that their house has not lost value from the peak!

  78. Clotpoll says:

    3b (51)-

    It’s been evident for a while that John inhabits a parallel universe.

  79. william says:

    The caveat is tho….ultimately the fault lies on the brainwashed sheep…when they awaken….look out

  80. william says:

    I personally will be there when the heads of this economic machine are marched to the gallows

  81. John says:

    I do something most others consider a four letter word, it is called WORK. Sunday morning at 9am to 12pm I was in school brushing up on Accounting as IFRS is the next big thing, Last week I was presenting at conferences, it is a lot of extra work, but you gotta keep up on education, networking and public speaking to the day you retire. If you wanna punch a clock and watch the game on Sundays and relax after work you will never make it past 50 in today’s work force.

  82. Stu says:

    “It’s been evident for a while that John inhabits a parallel universe.”

    Or he could simply be schizo?

  83. william says:

    The irony is they do it under the guise of God—well what they don’t realize is that christianity is a sham and just because “you invite Jesus Christ” into your heart you don’t get a free pass…..they will all burn for their evil deeds

  84. Clotpoll says:

    John (81)-

    Thanks for sharing your secret with us. None of us would’ve ever thought of work as a solution.

  85. Clotpoll says:

    will (83)-

    What? Walking up to the front of the church, weeping and speaking in tongues doesn’t give me brownie points when I screw over my enemies?

  86. william says:

    clot–haha

  87. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    American Express: About 7,000 jobs affected by cuts

  88. HEHEHE says:

    Person opininion:

    Only thing keeping the dollar/US remotely propped up is the threat of our military. Which means one of two things:

    a)It likely will be used in the not too distant future

    or

    b)It’s budget will be cut and the empire will be kaput

    Given their pull in D.C. which one do you think is more likely?

  89. william says:

    The interesting point is O has been annointed and groomed by the machine for years now…when Florida unexplicably moved the democratic election up thus killing Hillary’s chances…the writing was on the wall….The reason the machine wants O in…he will placate the restless sheep….You see they are stirring and starting to question so they need to placate them with more money and comfort…for a while…then O will prolly go down in an unexplicable airplane accident 3 years into his presidency…..just a thought

  90. Anon E. Moose says:

    @Shore Guy (67):

    What those people fail to realize is that their lives wouldn’t be a damn bit different if they lived Peoria. Their days revolve around commuting to work 90 minutes each way; comming home and sitting in their houses watching cable TV. Maybe they see kids’ school play, or take them to soccer on the weekends.

    They’re welcome to keep slaving away to the fantasy that “this place is different”; it means that employer will have to offer me that much more to attract my marketable skills away from here.

  91. Yikes says:

    anybody have a link to that wal-mart/credit card thing that was discussed yesterday?

  92. bi says:

    Any other news media is looking at this? or it is just M’s smear campaign?

    Ex-CIA Expert: Omama Took Millions in Illegal Foreign Donations

    Wednesday, October 29, 2008 9:27 PM

    By: Kenneth R. Timmerman Article Font Size

    A Newsmax investigation of Omama Viden campaign contributors, undertaken in conjunction with a private investigative firm headed by a former CIA operations officer, has identified 118 donors who appear to lack U.S. citizenship.

    Some of these “red flag” donors work for foreign governments; others have made public statements declaring that they are citizens of Cameroun, Nigeria, Pakistan, Canada, and other countries.

    A Newsmax sampling of about 3,400 donors also found hundreds more who showed “yellow flags” such as not having used a Social Security number or a known U.S. address. Most U.S.-born citizens are issued Social Security numbers at birth or by the time they enter kindergarten.

  93. william says:

    That’s because that’s how the CIA does things….smoke and mirrors

  94. John says:

    Peoria is a dump in the middle of nowhere, you frigging got to drive hours to chicago to grab a flight. Who dreams of a corner office in Peoria? Plus no ocean I would go nuts. Every kid in Peoria dreams of New York or LA and wonders why their parents are such losers cause they ended up in Peoria. OMG if GG took place in Peoria instead of NY you would have to gag me with a spoon.

    Anon E. Moose Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 10:20 am
    @Shore Guy (67):

    What those people fail to realize is that their lives wouldn’t be a damn bit different if they lived Peoria. Their days revolve around commuting to work 90 minutes each way; comming home and sitting in their houses watching cable TV. Maybe they see kids’ school play, or take them to soccer on the weekends.

    They’re welcome to keep slaving away to the fantasy that “this place is different”; it means that employer will have to offer me that much more to attract my marketable skills away from here.

  95. John says:

    For some bankers, a smaller payout would come as a surprise. More than one-third of Wall Street employees surveyed by a recruitment Web site between Oct. 13 and Oct. 21 said they expect a bigger bonus this year. Two-thirds of the 1,300 people surveyed said they still expect some year-end award, according to eFinancialCareers.com, owned by New York-based Dice Holdings Inc.

  96. John says:

    Thornburg Mortgage Announces Further Extension of the Exchange Offer and Requests NYSE Approval to Issue Amended Exchange Offer ConsiderationPROVIDED BY Business Wire – 10:45 AM 10/30/2008
    SANTA FE, N.M.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–

    Thornburg Mortgage, Inc. (TMA), announced that it is extending the expiration of its Exchange Offer and Consent Solicitation (the “Exchange Offer”) for all outstanding shares of its 8.00% Series C Cumulative Redeemable Preferred Stock, Series D Adjusting Rate Cumulative Redeemable Preferred Stock, 7.50% Series E Cumulative Convertible Redeemable Preferred Stock and 10% Series F Cumulative Convertible Redeemable Preferred Stock (collectively, the “Preferred Stock”) from 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on October 31, 2008 to 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on November 19, 2008, unless further extended or terminated by the company.

  97. bi says:

    now i am predicting casaulty at the night of Nov. 4th. If O wins, which is more likely, it will be around 100. If O loses, it could be over a thousand. please vote early and go home directly after work.

  98. Shore Guy says:

    Skep,

    Of course NE homes have not lost value. They are all close to NY.

  99. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [30] Gator,

    “1 Nom relinquishes his beloved guns and takes a job in the O administration.” . . . ”

    What guns??? Who said I have guns??? Think I want the NJ Stormtroopers over my house??? Nope, no guns there. And pay no attention to that wet cement in the garage.

    And I could never pass the drug test for a spot in the O administration—they won’t find any kool-aid in my system.

    “5. Stu regains his hair.”

    I guess I will know him when I see him.

  100. william says:

    doesn’t matter who u vote for—best thing u could do is write the family pet in…bypass this bs all together

  101. william says:

    electoral college would take care of business even if they don’t get their man in

  102. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Fidelity May Lay Off 9% of Work Force

    There could be more layoffs in the mutual-fund industry as investors have been pulling money out of stock funds in record amounts.

    In Boston, Fidelity Investments is considering a plan to reduce head count as it suffers negative cash flow in its stock mutual funds, say people briefed on the matter. These people say layoffs could include as many as 4,000 employees, or about 9% of Fidelity’s work force, and would affect a number of Fidelity units, including its core investment-management arm.

    Anne Crowley, spokeswoman for the Boston fund company, declined to say whether layoffs were coming. She said Fidelity has been reviewing all of its costs and staffing amid the market’s turmoil. The company is “very stable, and very strong, but certainly these are extraordinary times,” Ms. Crowley said.

    Mutual-fund companies earn much of their money from fees assessed as a percentage of assets, meaning that market declines and redemptions of fund shares have a direct impact on the bottom line.

    In earnings releases last week, Janus Capital Group of Denver said it was cutting 9% of its work force; New York’s AllianceBernstein Holding LP’s chief executive called layoffs “unavoidable,” and American Century Investments said it can’t rule out a reduction in staff.

  103. Stu says:

    ““5. Stu regains his hair.

    I guess I will know him when I see him.”

    Just don’t confuse me with Gary please.

  104. Essex says:

    I gotta agree on the Peoria thing….flyover towns are fine for kids when they are young…no one knows any better and costs are really cheap. We are getting hosed here. No doubt.

  105. John says:

    O is going to win. He is the teflon Don.

  106. House Hunter says:

    #76 clot…”soma”

  107. hirono says:

    Hey Bi,

    Newsmax…??? Newsmax…???

    Are you kidding or retarded? Even Trig Palin has enough sense not to believe what he reads in Newsmax.

  108. skep-tic says:

    on the bright side, consumer spending was 3/4 of the economy near the panic of 1907. now it is 2/3.

  109. John says:

    I love Trig, if Palin wins I am naming my next kid Calculus!!!! I don’t even know the other guys kids names. They look kinda like that little girl on Corey in the House.

  110. grim says:

    From DealBreaker:

    Layoffs Watch ’08: BarcLehs

    Cuts are said to be going down in BarcLehs operations circa now. Severance is 2 months pay plus two weeks for every year with the firm, and a lump sum based on some percentage of 2007’s bonus.

  111. skep-tic says:

    #38

    “in the land of the blind, the one eyed man rules”

    bingo. the rest of the world is more f’d than the USA.

  112. william says:

    The funny part is , actually hilarious part, is that many Americans actually thought Palin was for real

  113. kettle1 says:

    skeptic

    “the rest of the world is more f’d than the USA.”

    really? some may be but some will be better off then us. the US is on top at the moment only because we are the center of consumerism. Kill that and the people on top are those with the most valuable raw materials.

  114. Qwerty says:

    Cindy @ 9:17am — If your income is $350 a month, you’re unemployed.

    No other prospects? How about some tutoring on the side at $15/hour? Provide daycare? Etc, etc.

  115. Nicholas says:

    For those of you who are wondering what the average American is going through right now I might be able to lend a little more to Cindy’s story.

    I was talking to my brother last night, he is a professional painter who has been having trouble finding work for the last 4 months. Remember that painting is seaonsal and the last four months included the season which he was supposed to be working. He has no personal savings and was one of those who tapped home equity lines to purchase a vehicle or two over the last two years. I think that the term BABOONS fits nicely in this situation.

    During our conversation he noted that he had found some contract work but the pay was delayed by 30 days because he was subcontracting and had to submit invoices that would be paid at the end of the month. So he is trying to find a way to make every dollar strech till he gets paid. This means that his mortgage is in arrears, groceries are not being restocked, no new clothes, no doctors, no mowing the yard, nothing until he gets money.

    He has two boys that live with him and his wife. He says that he is tapped out totally and the only thing he has for him is a full tank of gas that he got at the begining of the week. He estimates that will last him 4 more days before he won’t be able to make it to work anymore. I asked him what he would do then and he stated that he would probably call in sick or so if that gets him to payday.

    His oldest son, 15, called me to inquire about how best to go about getting a job at fast food restaurants so that he can help out with the family finances.

    Reality is that these types of people are tapped and are not going to be supporting the consumer society.

  116. kettle1 says:

    Nick, Cindy

    what are americans facing?

    ……Brazil (ification) home of the rich, land of the poor

  117. william says:

    The simple truth is if we would do our patriotic duty we would get out of debt…that’s it….it will be painful, but in the end will be the only way to end these wolves’ reign

  118. Nicholas says:

    Kettle,

    I have such a large family and we span all education levels and economic situations. I have about 4 more personal stories like this.

  119. Shore Guy says:

    “if we would do our patriotic duty ”

    As in:

    1) saving, instead of spending $1.10 for every $1 we earn?

    Or

    2) being taxed evermore without first cutting government spending?

  120. william says:

    Amazing! Ever since I recently denounced Christianity—It is so obvious now…

  121. william says:

    Actually the teachings of Christianity speak of staying out of debt…but they don’t preach that anymore…

  122. kettle1 says:

    Nick,

    I have similar stories in my family as well.

    the social fabric of this country is about to melt down. It is going to be very ugly when it does.

    There is little choice. What are all of these families going to do when there is no work to be had and your family is cold and hungary while at the saem time banks and corporations are being handed billions of dollars? how long before people respond to that?

    the government is doing everything wrong. It is basically following argentinas play book.

    The onyl way out now is to use the billions to try and cushion the blow to the citizens, not the corporations. And i do not mean mortgages; food shelter and medicine.

  123. 3b says:

    #80 skeptic: What a surprise

  124. skep-tic says:

    To paraphrase Animal House: I got news for you guys– they’re gonna screw us no matter what we do. So we might as well have a little fun. This is the attitude of Americans. O wins the election, annouces that the checks will be in the mail in January– everyone rolls to the mall and spends all that “stimulus” and more on their credit cards. more debt, but at least we got some sweet new rims, bratz dolls and some CZ from Zales

  125. Nicholas says:

    William,

    I’m not really sure your communicating anything useful. What do you consider patriotic duty? You mean that if you were a patriot you would reduce your debt level?

    I’m not sure that is the definition of patriotism.

    I’m also not sure who these wolves are.

    The people who are in economic distress in my family are in that mess because of the choices they made. They continually make bad choices during the good times that waste their resources and they act like they were injusticed when things go wrong. Hello ant and grasshopper story?

    I have stacks of cash and I’m not in a hurry to shell out money to even my own family members just yet. I’m not adverse to helping to bear some of their burdens but given their track record, money won’t be changing hands anytime soon. “I didn’t get rich by giving my money away”, is a quote that one of my economically advantaged brothers told me once.

    You are having problems buying groceries but you aren’t slim on smokes? I think you have your priorities messed up my brother…

  126. John says:

    Ok with this painter story I don’t get it. Why does he have car loans? Why does he have a 15 year old unemployed son. Why did his parents let him choose that career? What does his wife do for money? Why did he overextend himself on his home. Why is he still pursuing painting when their is not work? Why does he not sell his cars? Why does he not take in tenants? Why doesn’t he get a second job? I don’t get it. Sounds like income is gone and he can’t face that he can’t have new cars and his own single family home anymore. Times are very tough and some people got used to easy credit and it is a tough nut to swallow.

  127. william says:

    nicholas—go back to sleep

  128. BC Bob says:

    William,

    Nobody give a rats *ss regarding your religious beliefs.

    Stick to pushing for a positive savings rate and hopefully eliminate the transfer of wealth overseas.

  129. Shore Guy says:

    Ket,

    We established a view of the “American standard of living” in the years after WWII — a time when, temporarily, all the economic forces aligned in our favor. Those days are long over yet we fail to candidly speak about the change in circumstances. We, read the politicos, continue to develop programs based on the economic world that once existed, not the current realities. If we continue to run programs based on our past fiscal condition, not our current fiscal condition, we cannot sustain those programs. We have the choice of rationally altering programs and expenditures or waiting until we are going over the cliff and nothing will work.

  130. John says:

    I guage my recession by McDonalds, back in 1991/1992 they had to lock the dumpsters to keep the people from diving in an eating the half eaten burgers and fries.

    Funniest indicator I read is Prep H sales. Seems when sales go up it is a recesion coming. People buy one ply and scratchy no name toliet paper and scratchy paper makes butt itch.

  131. Nicholas says:

    Besides the smokes his cable seems to be working just fine too.

  132. william says:

    I think you miss the point—these wolves’ use religion to manipulate, and then think they are getting a free pass to heaven via jesus christ—it’s actually a brilliant plan to keep masses of people unaware of a huge crime syndicate

  133. skep-tic says:

    “We have the choice of rationally altering programs and expenditures or waiting until we are going over the cliff and nothing will work.”

    Seems pretty obvious that we are going for plan B. Get it while its hot!

  134. william says:

    It also gives them the ability to instill instant hatred….”You are a muslim, you are the enemy”

  135. John says:

    I don’t have a flat screen TV, Apple junk or a WI do you think some of those “broke” folks could sell me one cheap.

    The guy with no gas for work reminds me of back in the day when you parked close next to a guy with an opposite gas cap and did the old sipon, nothing like a mouthful of gas the night before an exam to get you pumped.

  136. grim says:

    Religion and Obama/McCain discussions are banned for the rest of the day.

    You will be moderated, no excuses.

    You may, however, insult Biden or Palin.

  137. Nicholas says:

    John,

    I’m 100% with you on the illogic that is happening to him. I didn’t make him choose painting as a career 20 years ago. I didn’t make his wife have mental problems that keep her from interacting normally with others.

    A 15 year old should be focusing on school work, SAT preps, girls, and facebook.

    His life like many others smacks of illogical choices, he smokes and has cable but can’t put gas in his new cars. This is what happens when you get caught on the side of the short and are not paying attention. He is a painter and has lost quite a few brain cells due to the nature of his work, he doesn’t focus on money until it is gone.

    I’m not in line to help him out of his problems either. A heavy dose of reality might shake him out of his stupor.

  138. John says:

    Actually Palin is hot but the fact that she has rotten eggs is a turn off.

  139. John says:

    I can tell you are not Asian, “A 15 year old should be focusing on school work, SAT preps, girls, and facebook”

    Since when is facebook and sleeping around priorities for 15 years olds to get ahead. Well maybe in Vegas and Bankock.

  140. skep-tic says:

    read an article the other day that flat screen TV sales are up YoY. now that is an essential purchase if there ever was one. Problem is that sony, sharp, toshiba all thought sales would be up even more due to the switch to digital TV signal. apparently, more people than anyone thought are opting to take the free converter from the gov’t. the gov’t is spending $1.5B to pay for these converters! Yes, we are really in hard times when the choice most people face is get either a flat screen or a coupon from the gov’t to convert my old TV for free. happy that my taxes are helping to relieve this pain

  141. william says:

    145–omg that is funny

  142. william says:

    grim—how bout them bears?

  143. Yikes says:

    thanks stu.

    f the auto industry and the horse of entitlement those as*clowns rode in on

    http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20081030/AUTO01/810300394

  144. Shore Guy says:

    “You may, however, insult Biden or Palin”

    I bet you are a fan of turkey shoots and shooting fish in barrels, too.

  145. BC Bob says:

    Another area that was immune;

    “Oct. 30 (Bloomberg) — Home prices in the Hamptons, the summer resort of Wall Street bankers and Hollywood celebrities, plunged a record 19 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier as stocks tumbled and the financial industry shed jobs.”

    “The median price for a home on the eastern tip of New York’s Long Island fell to $830,000 from $1.03 million, the biggest drop in at least five years, according to a report today by New York based appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and broker Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601068&sid=aMqMwgujJKKM&refer=economy

  146. kettle1 says:

    Nick, Will

    You both have points. America has been sold on the image of success = shiny possessions. The last 2 generations have been raised on this premise. Americans have become a resource to the corporations no different then iron ore or oil is to industry.

    We are all capable of making a conscious choice of not accepting this mindset, but few ever question the status quo. It is much easier to take the plasma then on credit then fore go it from a social perspective.

    to some degree americans have been pavloved for the last 30 years. waking Americans up to this is in the complete disinterest of the politicians and CEO’s. Such an awakening, whether on purpose by the powers that be, or unintentionally due to economic collapse, will end in a revolution. The nature if that revolution, whether it is a social one, a peaceful one, or a violent one is anyone’s guess.

  147. william says:

    kettle—-we need to get our self glasser’ed instead of pavloved

  148. kettle1 says:

    Skeptic,

    I am sure a number of people would/will use any stimulus check to buy shiny stuff. But i am seeing more and more people going into saving mode as they fear the near future.

    The last set of stimulus checks was a relative failure as a large portion of people used them to pay off debt or saved the money instead of buying “stuff”. This will be even more pronounced with the next stimulus.

  149. Shore Guy says:

    “The people who are in economic distress in my family are in that mess because of the choices they made.”

    Yup. I keep hearing and reading reports about people who have gone deep into debt or lost homes because of a job loss or illness. First, I know there are some cases where disaster strikes and no amout of planning is sufficient to stave off economic collapse. That said, most people who get into economic distress because of an event like divorce, an illness, job loss, etc., were skating at the edge of the precipice by over spending and under saving and the event that pushed them over the edge was just the last straw. Had most of these “victims” lived a more frugal lifestyle, the event in question would not likely have pushed them into the abyss.

  150. Shore Guy says:

    “The people who are in economic distress in my family are in that mess because of the choices they made.”

    Yup. I keep hearing and reading reports about people who have gone deep into debt or lost homes because of a job loss or illness. First, I know there are some cases where disaster strikes and no amout of planning is sufficient to stave off economic collapse. That said, most people who get into economic distress because of an event like divorce, an illness, job loss, etc., were skating at the edge of the precipice by over spending and under saving and the event that pushed them over the edge was just the last straw. Had most of these “victims” lived a more frugal lifestyle, the event in question would not likely have pushed them into the abyss.

  151. william says:

    I’m for a combo of violent/social

  152. Nicholas says:

    Kettle1,

    I always wondered why I was different from the rest of my family. When I would watch commercials on TV they strangely had no effect on me. The rest of the family salivates when they see that BK shroom and swiss commercial.

    Advertisement, the method of control for corporations holds no sway over my consumerism. Pronogarfy is another mechanism altoghether though…

  153. kettle1 says:

    william 152,

    glasserized…..that would be very bad for a consumer economy

  154. william says:

    shore—most Americans don’t know what “I think, therefore I am” means tho. Until they understand and lose their apathy, they will continue making the same mistakes over and over….It is the essence of the sheep

  155. william says:

    kettle—I think the consumer economy needs to hibernate for a bit

  156. Nicholas says:

    Shore,

    You still having that double post problem?

    When I tried to make a double post on this website it rejected the post and says that I already have a duplicate post.

    I wonder why it isn’t doing that with you.

  157. william says:

    yes it will be painful…but I feel its needed to finally get peoople to awaken…suffering brings enlightenment

  158. Stu says:

    “Advertisement, the method of control for corporations holds no sway over my consumerism.”

    Toyota saved by zero?

  159. kettle1 says:

    Nick,

    Derren brown,

    google that name (or youtube it) he does a series of videos on the power of mental suggestion. Its amazing what you can pull off if you understand how most people perceive the world. The advertising industry mastered this stuff decades ago.

    an example

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyQjr1YL0zg

  160. Shore Guy says:

    It must be something in the IE8 beta.

    The weird thing is that the message posted (twice, as luck would have it) as I went to insert a line. I went nowhere near the submit comment button.

  161. Stu says:

    Bernanke’s mantra:

    U.S. saved by Zero!

  162. Shore Guy says:

    “suffering brings enlightenment”

    Ahh, William, you are a married man, I see.

  163. Stu says:

    “the power of mental suggestion”

    Where’s the nearest BK? I’m suddenly drawn to shrooms!

  164. william says:

    kettle—ure DEAD on the money about advertising

  165. william says:

    shore—I was!!!! hahaha

  166. kettle1 says:

    Shore,

    i think you might be infected my friend. you should really get that checked out.

    a good antivirus

    http://free.avg.com/

    also dump IE

  167. william says:

    I had a Siddartha like-enlightenment without the weight gain after the divorce

  168. william says:

    i meant siddartha-like

  169. skep-tic says:

    here is something I was thinking about last night. let’s say stocks are f’d for the next 10-20 yrs. we’ve got a nasty recession in front of us and then the baby boomers are going to retire and start liquidating their holdings. OK, and then maybe bonds are f’d as well due to inflation that all of this massive stimulus is going to eventually create. If you believe this two statements to be true, don’t you want to put your money into something tangible like RE?

  170. Shore Guy says:

    See, William. It was an enlightening experience. Make sure you send the ex a package of lightbulbs on her birthday each year.

  171. 3b says:

    #155 Shore:Had most of these “victims” lived a more frugal lifestyle, the event in question would not likely have pushed them into the abyss.

    Yes, but than their friends and neighbors would have thought they were poor.

    And that perception had to be avoided at all costs;especially so in the surburbs,and even more so in the wannabe surburbs.

    I have seen this behavior rapidly multiply in the last 5 orr 6 years, evidenced by people taking what became the obligatory winter vacation. Summer vacation was not enough. Cannot have people thinking your “poor”.

  172. House Hunter says:

    128/151 Kettle/ John 140…look at the last 10 years (or beyond), there has been a lot of inflation in some of the necessities (not always counted in the gubmint numbers)..but a good portion of that is what I would call a consumer inflation of sorts.
    Gasoline from 1999 to 2005 went up about 98%… Housing, healthcare and food have all gone up. Housing exponentially. My in laws had to pay 800 out of pocket for their drugs last month. some cereals have gone up over 2$ a box. Then, what about tv’s..if you buy a normal one the costs have gone down, if you buy a “flat” screen it has gone up. What about everyone with a cell phone, ok but you don’t need the fancy one for 300 dollars. Internet access and cable TV. Ok, you may need the internet access depending on your work, but you don’t need the platinum cable tv package correct? Just a thought…we are so wacky in this country it isn’t funny.

  173. william says:

    instead of hate them educate them…

  174. william says:

    the sheep…not the wolves

  175. william says:

    Realtors can educate if greed does not get in the way….

  176. Shore Guy says:

    3b,

    This bespeaks of people judging their own worth on what others think of them. If a person judges him/herself based on what others think of him/her, that person is always doomed to live a life os dissatisfaction.

  177. kettle1 says:

    skeptic,

    The boomers are retiring now!

    you have also just asked the million $ question (was billion, but deflated). How do you preserve wealth in the current environment. many different approaches, choose your poison.

    if you go with deflation though, buying RE at the moment is a bad idea.

  178. galgon says:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081030/ap_on_bi_ge/earns_exxon_mobil;_ylt=AgUa_3ifvyVbaDCc_qAtReWs0NUE

    Exxon Shatters its quarterly earnings record:

    “HOUSTON – Exxon Mobil Corp., the world’s largest publicly traded oil company, reported income Thursday that shattered its own record for the biggest profit from operations by a U.S. corporation, earning $14.83 billion in the third quarter.

    Yet numbers contained within the company’s most recent financial report revealed production numbers that continue to sag, and shares slipped 3 percent in midday trading.”

  179. BC Bob says:

    “the baby boomers are going to retire and start liquidating their holdings.”

    skep,

    Sound like a better argument to stay away. Why does everybody assume that inflation will lift RE prices?

  180. RayC says:

    skep-tic

    How good is “tangible” if you buy real estate at current prices? If the economic scenario you describe occurs, who is going to buy/rent your property?

  181. skep-tic says:

    I was just thinking that maybe you will be better off by having a paid off house than a bunch of money in an account that shrinks by a small amount every year for many years. obviously this is impossible to predict, it just sometimes seems to me that much of the conventional personal finance wisdom of the past 25 yrs (the boomer era) may no longer be optimal.

  182. william says:

    shore, kettle, 3b, skeptic—you guys are right on the money in my opinion…at what point does this philosophy of fisal responsibility get to the masses? better question is how?

  183. House Hunter says:

    fed’s probing the friends of Mozilo program at countrywide http://deepbackground.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/10/30/1613877.aspx

  184. skep-tic says:

    I am not talking about paying peak price for RE. I’m talking about post-bubble price, which I assume in our area will be about 20% below where it is right now.

  185. kettle1 says:

    a succinct summary by Mish

    “The list of participants dependent on the Fed increases every day. The Fed is now the lender of only resort, not just to the US but to Brazil, Mexico, South Korea, and Singapore. When those loans are used up, what’s next? More loans? Bigger loans?

    I have a simple question:
    Pray tell what is the exit strategy for this mess?”

  186. RayC says:

    skep-tic

    It does make sense to me, but I am not looking to invest in real estate, just 1 house to live in. If I had a lot of cash, and the energy to be a landlord, its not a bad idea. Heck, the government likes it so much it wants to turn the USA into a company town.

    I can finally find a house without GUARANTEEING financial ruin, but there is no real hurry.

  187. skep-tic says:

    Ray– I am not even talking about being a landlord. I’m just talking about paying off your mortgage as quickly as possible being a better investment than paying it on schedule and then investing and savings (maybe even including investing in 401k). There is a great deal of comfort, I would imagine, in living in a paid off house.

  188. william says:

    The only explanation is that the Gov. knows the world is ending in 2012—and they just want to live it up at our expense while it lasts??

  189. John says:

    According to US Census 30% of people have no mortgage on their home. It is also safe to say their are a lot of people who have small mortgages. That throws a wrench in the forced selling scenario. I could work in Home Depot part time and easily afford my mortgage!!!

  190. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Report: Condé Nast cutting staffs, budgets by 5%

    Magazine publisher Condé Nast has told its publishers and editors to reduce their staffs and budgets by 5% in the coming weeks, according to a published report Thursday.

    The publisher of such venerable titles as Vanity Fair, The New Yorker and Glamour has informed top executives at all 26 of its publications to make two separate 5% cuts within its budget, reducing both payroll and non-payroll expenses, The New York Observer reported, citing five unnamed sources.

  191. william says:

    John—that is true freedom…The Machine doesn’t want that

  192. BC Bob says:

    “Pray tell what is the exit strategy for this mess?”

    kettle,

    The fed can bend down and kiss their #ss goodbye?

  193. kettle1 says:

    Skep

    “I was just thinking that maybe you will be better off by having a paid off house than a bunch of money in an account that shrinks by a small amount every year for many years. obviously this is impossible to predict, it just sometimes seems to me that much of the conventional personal finance wisdom of the past 25 yrs (the boomer era) may no longer be optimal.”

    I agree, we only differ in implementaion

    ————————-

    WIll,

    “at what point does this philosophy of fisal responsibility get to the masses? better question is how?”

    consider what you are asking. WHat is the implication of the american consumer becoming the american saver? Any transition whether forced by economic crash or by public decision will be very rough.

    The current global economy is based on growth economics. The most likely optimal solution and least likely to occur is steady state eocnomics. Growth based economics will almost always lead to a crash. ANy transition from a growth to steady state economy would be doable but unpleasant.

    However we are being forced to convert from a consumer economy to a producer one. This will be rough as what do we produce that the world wants???? not much. We will have to rebuild american indusrty

  194. John says:

    If you invest your money at a lower rate of return than your mortgage and don’t need your cash for a long time of course you should pay it off. People with 2.75% taxable money markets keeping a 6% mortgage doesn’t make sense if you don’t need the money in the next five years. If you don’t itemize, it is a no brainer.

  195. BC Bob says:

    “I could work in Home Depot part time and easily afford my mortgage!!!”

    John,

    Working P/T in HD won’t pay property taxes in NJ.

  196. william says:

    (200) kettle—-right on the money!!

    Will u and shore run in 2012?? I’ll vote then

  197. william says:

    pain can feel so good—Hell I lost everything after my divorce, but I realized material possessions were no longer important…It was an enlightening experience…now I bounce around happy all day…no more meds….no more worries…and I don’t even miss all the “stuff”

  198. Shore Guy says:

    Gator,

    Are you safe with the cutbacks?

  199. william says:

    chicks dig happy guys too haha…not just rich ones

  200. Nicholas says:

    William,

    It gets their through like every other successful trend, through their mothers. Teach women fiscal responsibility and it becomes knitted into the fabric of your society.

    On the topic of subliminal advertising I’m still on the side that I see it as stupid. I just don’t become moved to buy a product based on even small continual suggestions. It doesn’t make your product better, more tasty, or cheaper. Either it works or it doesn’t.

    I used to shave with those one bladed crap razors until one day I was walking through the store and I said “wow, there are three blades on this one, let me try it”, Next year there was one with four blades, then ones with five. I tried them because initially more was better.

    I don’t use those razors anymore because they became very expensive compared to a generic three bladed razor which has similar performance.

    The three bladed generic didn’t spend any on advertizing and I still tried it to check cost/performance metrics.

    I’m sure that many people, possibly myself included, are swayed by this type of advertising but it so happens that education and understanding dissolve alot of he “flash” that is modern commercials.

  201. 3b says:

    #194 John; Does it say how many have HELOC’s and Home Equity Loans? Every homeowner (with the exception of older relatives) that I know has at least one

  202. william says:

    nicholas—you think though—most people don’t..they are sleeping at the wheel…until we realize we have to help others see this…we suffer the consequences

  203. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Motorola will lay off 3,000 workers, two-thirds of them from its cellphone divison, co-chief executive Greg Brown said

  204. Shore Guy says:

    William,

    Anyone who would speak the truth about the need for fiscal restraint in any political race would get hammered from all quarters — as so many want something for nothing from government. Proposing that government cut programs will only get one labled as an enemy of this, that, or the other thing. Were the process not so poisonous, I would consider running for congress, despite the loss of income and disruption to my family. That said, I don’t see that happening.

  205. william says:

    have u guys ever considered running for Government??? With the intelligence and know how…I think that’s how people like yourselves can make a huge impact….

  206. 3b says:

    #192 skeptic: There is a great deal of comfort, I would imagine, in living in a paid off house.

    True. Except in many north Jersey towns after your house is paid for, you are still paying anywhere from 800 to 1000 a month and in many cases more, to live in that paid off houde that you “own.” Just saying.

  207. william says:

    shore—people are desperate for the truth…they want it, but noone is bringing it….I would back you 100 percent in an election…I think a lot of people would…you’d be very suprised

  208. kettle1 says:

    nick 205

    I agree and disagree. A lot of the advertising techniques work on a subliminal level and for most people are highly effective. There are studies that show most people are still effected by these techniques even when it is directly pointed out to them.

    There is however, a subset of people on which these techniques are ineffective. Congratulations, you are part of the subset.

    the only real way to break the power of advertising is to take Williams approach and realize material possessions are worthless in the big picture. As long as people define themselves and their lives around physical possessions then the advertisers have them by the short and curlys

  209. RayC says:

    skep-tic

    I agree with you completely, I would love to live in a paid off house. Actually, I do, but the landlord paid it off. (I know – I checked the Union County online records.)

    If I had bought 3 years ago, I would have been 3 years into a 30 year mortgage. Now I am close to being able to swing payments on a 15 or 20 yr.

  210. John says:

    That is just from the last census. I don’t know anyone with a HELOC unless for tax reasons they did it to buy a car or pay for tuition and wanted the interest write off. HELOC rates are cheap now so maybe some people are floating their lifestyle rather than cutting back or using 16% credit cards.

    3b Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 1:07 pm
    #194 John; Does it say how many have HELOC’s and Home Equity Loans? Every homeowner (with the exception of older relatives) that I know has at least one

  211. william says:

    I’m not an eloquent guy…I could never do it…but you guys can….

  212. 3b says:

    #181 shore:that person is always doomed to live a life os dissatisfaction.

    That might explain why more than 50% of all American adults have sought or will seek Psychariactic care at soem poin in their lives,according to an articel I read some time back.

  213. Shore Guy says:

    William,

    As BO has shown, and as, I believe it was Phil Gramm who said, “politics is the mother’s milk of politics.” For one to launch an outsiders campaign for a congressional seat would cost a good $2 million, perhaps more. That is 10,000 people contributing $200 each. It can be done, but without proper capitalization, one is doomed to fail. Even if one does raise the cash, if the national parties detect a hint of a challenge to one of their own preferred candidates, they will dump boatloads of cash into the race to thwart the outsider. One can win such a race, but it requires lots of donations and boots on the ground going house to house.

  214. william says:

    how bout all you guys split up and run for the house in different districts…take over New Jersey :)

  215. Shore Guy says:

    ” As long as people define themselves and their lives around physical possessions then the advertisers have them by the short and curlys”

  216. Shore Guy says:

    ” As long as people define themselves and their lives around physical possessions then the advertisers have them by the short and curlys”

  217. william says:

    I’m good at knockin on doors

  218. Shore Guy says:

    “As long as people define themselves and their lives around physical possessions then the advertisers have them by the short and curlys”

    Amen.

  219. skep-tic says:

    #195

    “Magazine publisher Condé Nast has told its publishers and editors to reduce their staffs and budgets by 5% in the coming weeks, according to a published report Thursday.”

    too bad for them the trophy wife (and gay male equivalent) market is f’d as well!

  220. Clotpoll says:

    william (187)-

    The powers that be don’t want people to be fiscally educated or responsible.

    The operating idea is to trap as many Americans as possible in a cradle-to-grave life of debt servitude. Then, people have no choices, no motivation, no aspiration and no ability to move from one place to another. The end product will be a static, predictable workforce of compliant, glassy-eyed zombies.

  221. kettle1 says:

    william,

    The people may be desperate for truth but they are not ready to accept what the would be told.

    try explaining to someone why they must now have a lower standard of living, stop buying shiny things and wait 30 years to see the return on such social investments. Try telling people that we are not all special snowflakes.

    “I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it”

  222. Shore Guy says:

    Grim,

    Please kill the mutant clones and then this one too.

  223. william says:

    people so desperately want to believe that this country could be great again….You guys have inspired me just through your postings…I’ve read them for a long time but just recently started posting…It was like I woke up one day and got it….People are arising from their slumber, they just need an alarm clock or a nudge.

  224. Shore Guy says:

    How does the saying go, “The road to hell is paved with credit cards.” Or something like that.

  225. yikes says:

    # John Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 8:27 am

    So two of my daughters who inherited very little from me as they are beautiful and smart on Monday have been selected to meet Mr. O himself!!! I knew he was getting tough on getting votes but I must be the last person in the US thinking of voting for John and Cindy

    cousin of mine works on the campaign (college kid, go figure) and has met him twice. swears by the guy. it’s as if he has these college kids in a trance. sorry if grim dropped the no political talk edict today; im only on like comment 12

  226. william says:

    228—clot—damn that is soooooo true. I used to be one and it’s nice to recognize others see it as well

  227. william says:

    well i say credit cards are satan’s little spawn

  228. kettle1 says:

    william

    perhaps another appropriate quote (modified)

    Consumerism is a system. That system is our enemy. But when you’re inside, you look around, what do you see? Businessmen, teachers, lawyers, carpenters. The very minds of the people we are trying to save. But until we do, these people are still a part of that system and that makes them our enemy. You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inured, so hopelessly dependent on the system, that they will fight to protect it.

  229. william says:

    Pink Floyd was so right and I never got it—“Welcome to the machine”…If I would have only listened to them instead of my parents!!

  230. Nicholas says:

    Kettle,

    I am not completely immune to advertising, that “Five dollar, Five dollar, Five dollar foot long” commercial pops into my head whenever I see five dollars. I think it has something to do with that girl in the grass skirt though.

    I think you hit the mark though, I’m resistant to throwing my money away on garbage no matter how catchy the advertisement. And I can see that there are alot of pieces of crap on sale these days. “7 dollars for lifetime rotation on your tires?” == bad deal. They will rotate your tires for free if you come in for any regularly scheduled service. Why pay for something that is already free.

    39.99$ for that in-cabin air filter when I drive with my windows down 95% of the time, what a joke…just knock the spiders out of it Mr. Mechanic.

  231. william says:

    236—-damn, I never thought about that! The very people being enslaved actually accept it and want it???

  232. yikes says:

    # BC Bob Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 8:43 am

    The consumer is tapped/buried. With the continuing decimation of the housing market and 401K losses, there will be an unprecedented retrenchment. Very troubling for an economy that’s consumer driven. On the flip side, our current account defecit should start to shrink.

    It’s time we start building savings and stop exporting $3B a day. It’s our only hope.

    is it even possible for us to stop being a consumer-driven economy? how the heck could we do that?

  233. william says:

    how could someone NOT want to be free?

  234. Justin says:

    Can anyone give me some background info on MLS# 2842018 in Hawthorne.

  235. skep-tic says:

    I would never run for a federal office. D.C. is like a circus. Local politics in my opinion is much more influential. Mayors can get things done. They have real budgets and see their constituents daily (and the effects of their work). To me if you want to be in politics for the right reasons, you want to be an executive at the local or maybe state level.

  236. skep-tic says:

    #233

    so the Matrix was a big influence, I see

  237. RayC says:

    William- “Freedoms just another word for nothin’ left to lose”

    Soon we will all be free. At least we can pay/barter with Clot’s militia for protection.

  238. sean says:

    re; #55 Grim I remember several brokers who were blown out in the dot com bust and ended up bartending to make ends meet and stay in the city, some are still there manning the taps and still waxing about the good old days.

  239. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [230] yikes

    Kennedys have the same effect. Being from Mass. and being very cynical, it never worked on me—I found them likable and articulate, and quite personable in a normal setting, but that was it. Kinda like meeting an interesting person at a fundraiser, make some small talk, exchange cards. But the college kids, particularly those from out of town, went ga-ga at every fundraiser and compound event I attended (back when I trended democrat). At least my older friends that drank the kool-aid had an agenda: they wanted government jobs or other handouts. The college kids just wanted to be in the proximity of “royalty.”

  240. renter says:

    “…special snowflakes.” 226

    Hilarious….now that is funny. My daughter’s school refers to test as assessments and asks the teachers never to use red ink when grading.
    The meaning of the x is still WRONG no matter what color ink is used. If the teacher always uses purple ink then kids will associate purple ink with the wrong answer.
    My daughter told me “Mommy, assessment is a synonym for test.” (She is only 7)

  241. kettle1 says:

    william

    real freedom comes with a heavy price. Our fore fathers knew this.

    Freedom comes at the price of being free to suffer the consequences of our own actions; at being personally responsible for yuor actions; and being responsible for your own future.

    Freedom is not sitting in front of a TV eating chips and popping magic pills to prevent you from getting fat. It is not the right to have “undesirables” forced from your town because it might impact your social status.

    True freedom is the right to live and die by your own efforts while accepting the responsibility for the impact of your actions, whether good or bad.

    Most modern americans do not want freedom. They want the right to luxury and leisure and will sell their soul to get it. remember that the road to hell is paved in good intentions

  242. Stu says:

    “Gator,

    Are you safe with the cutbacks?”

    She damned better be :P

  243. BC Bob says:

    “real freedom comes with a heavy price.”

    “Well I know it wasn’t you who held me down
    Heaven knows it wasn’t you who set me free
    So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains
    And we never even know we have the key”

    Eagles

  244. kettle1 says:

    Skep,

    Influence? not really, i think i had most of my opinions before that. But i do think that is can be used to illustrate modern philosophical issues in an interesting way.

    Oh and the 2nd 2 sucked

  245. yikes says:

    Nicholas Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 11:32 am

    For those of you who are wondering what the average American is going through right now I might be able to lend a little more to Cindy’s story.

    I was talking to my brother last night, he is a professional painter who has been having trouble finding work for the last 4 months.

    sorry to hear about this, man.

  246. kettle1 says:

    Skep 240,

    I agree, as SAS says, the change must come from the bottom up.

    Oh and i can i just say that this election has ruined the word “change”….. can we come up with a replacement word that doesn have the propaganda attached to it?

  247. BC Bob says:

    Another form of advertising;

    “These bozos still can’t all agree that we’re in a recession even now or that we will be in one over the next twelve months! Attention you morons, we are seeing a global meltdown. Maybe if these economists were forced to get a real job in the real world, they’d see how bad things really are. Maybe if Americans stopped relying on the forms of media that validate the useless, lagging indicator insights of economists, more baby boomers might actually be able to retire someday.”

    “The facts are clear. Economists are more behind the curve than even the worst media shills on television, namely those seen on CNBC. Either way, if you listen to any of these clowns, you and your money will soon part. Perhaps it already has. If so, consider it an expensive price to pay for a valuable lesson learned.”

    http://www.financialsense.com/fsu/editorials/stathis/2008/1030.html

  248. Stu says:

    I’ve often considered running for a local office. My uncle was a Maryland state level senator. He started out as water commissioner. He was very well liked by the DNC, but didn’t want the headache of dealing with a federal level campaign. Plus my aunt had had enough with the campaigning by then. He’s in his 80’s now, but stayed liberal. Like his nephew, he was a fiscally-conservative liberal.

  249. Stu says:

    Kettle1:

    ““change””

    Don’t worry. In 2012 we’ll be back to using the word “reform.”

  250. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [245] renter,

    I think that there may be a market for supplemental education (think Sylvan or Huntington) for parents that want to “deprogram” their children after they are involved in the public education system.

    Sort of an alternative to home schooling. However, like home schooling, it would be a concept that absolutely infuriates the education establishment. So part of the deprogramming will be to make sure kids never let on that they are being deprogrammed, lest the system retaliate against them for going against the orthodoxy.

    (Cindy, anticipating your rejoinder, I know you would never retaliate against kids that disagreed with your worldview or whose parents purposefully undid the values you taught, but there are teachers and administrators who would, and the risk that they would put their NEA membership first is something to be guarded against).

  251. John says:

    Treasury sales could top $1 trillion to fund bailout
    U.S. could also bring back 7-year note, do more frequent sales

  252. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [251] Comrade Kettle

    I noticed that the O camp is using the word “revolution” a lot more now.

    Accurate, and it captures the flavor, I think.

  253. John says:

    Home schooling is for kooks and born again nuts. The disfunctional school system mirrors corporate america and in business you have to learn to work with people of all races and backgrounds. Plus prom night with your sister makes home schooling scary.

  254. skep-tic says:

    USA really had 3 revolutions. the first was in 1776; the second was the civil war (prior to 14th amendment, the bill of rights did not apply to the states); the third was the new deal. the concept of “freedom” today is very different than it was in the founding fathers’ time. now freedom is generally conceived of as “rights” (a product of the second and third revolutions). we may be entering a fourth period where the rights-based concept of freedom is expanded dramatically to include a great deal of economic rights. in any case, it seems impossible that we will ever return to the original conception of freedom on which this country was founded

  255. yikes says:

    i dont even know what to make of this

    http://www.fatalfarm.com/tvthemes/FFDuckTales.mov

  256. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [253] Stu,

    All those “fiscally conservative liberals” were the reason we were VA taxpayers and not MD taxpayers while there. In fact, when we “lived” in MD, my then-fiance rented a room from some college kids in VA in order to have a VA residence and avoid Montgomery county taxes.

    Montgomery County was so tax-happy that between 2000 and 2004, citizens twice tried to get state ballot questions passed to RAISE the cap on county income taxes (county income taxes are capped under state law).

  257. kettle1 says:

    Comrade Nom,

    Already working on my niece and nephew. had to have a chat with her after she got reprimanded for questioning the teachers lesson (and yes the teacher was wrong). keep it on the down low….

    Cindy,

    You and those like your are a rare beacon of hope. if you were the norm as opposed to the exception we would not be having this discussion

  258. skep-tic says:

    local politics also doesn’t tend to get bogged down in all of these culture war distractions. it is really meat and potatoes

  259. Stu says:

    Nom:

    “All those “fiscally conservative liberals” were the reason we were VA taxpayers and not MD taxpayers while there.”

    Fair enough. I only heard it from the horses mouth.

  260. SG says:

    Economist endorses O. I would say that is big.

    The presidential election – It’s time

  261. william says:

    229—-that is the key

  262. renter says:

    Nom
    Orthodoxy is the correct word. They are dead serious about the ban on red pens. I don’t think that dunce caps were helpful in education but neither is going to the other extreme to what I will refer to as the “special snowflake” educational philosophy.

    (Kettle please excuse the plagiarism)

  263. william says:

    kettle—249—why is it hard for me to accept this??? why do people look at me like i’m insane when I try to explain that freedom is better than any drug you could ever have??

  264. kettle1 says:

    # william Says:

    how bout all you guys split up and run for the house in different districts…take over New Jersey :)

    he may have an idea. How about we take over the entire political structure of 1 county. An NJRE poster in every major position?

  265. Stu says:

    William:
    “why do people look at me like i’m insane when I try to explain that freedom is better than any drug you could ever have??”

    Because they probably think you are still on drugs :P

  266. Stu says:

    “An NJRE poster in every major position?”

    I’ll take 69!

  267. skep-tic says:

    when I was in elementary school we had paddling. I don’t recall too many severe behavior problems

  268. Clotpoll says:

    skep (263)-

    Local politics is even worse. A bunch of f*&king Napoleons, all fighting like rabid weasels for their little footholds and fiefdoms.

    When the revolution starts, I’m not marching on DC first. I’m going down to the township and capping the mayor and council.

  269. Clotpoll says:

    Then, the school board and board of adjustment.

  270. Stu says:

    “when I was in elementary school we had paddling. I don’t recall too many severe behavior problems”

    Skep, remember the hyper kid and the slow kid. Neither of them had therapy, took pshyco drugs nor was diagnosed with a three-letter disorder. At most, a couple extra trips to the guidance counselor was in order. At the high school reunion, they are both as normal as can be.

  271. kettle1 says:

    will 268

    “why is it hard for me to accept this”

    The average person is the equivalent of a chimp raised in captivity. its all the chimp has known and is more or less comfortable with it.

    Try releasing the chimp back into its natural habitat and it will most likely refuse to leave the cage. Its natural habitat is now a foreign and dangerous place in the chimps eyes. How does it find food, what about predators?
    Still, some captive chimps will break loose at the first opportunity, but they are the exception. Most animals fare poorly in their natural habitat if raised in captivity.

  272. kettle1 says:

    follow up to 276 (for you skeptic)

    “you are a slave. Like everyone else you were born into bondage. Into a prison that you cannot taste or see or touch. A prison for your mind”

  273. SG says:

    http://www.pbs.org/nbr/site/onair/gharib/081028_gharib/

    GHARIB: So you’re saying that the worst is ahead of us. What is going to be the magnitude of it?

    ROUBINI: Well, I expect that the recession is going to last two years. We’re still at the beginning stages of a recession. I expect that the cumulative fall of output from the peak might be on the order of 5 percent, much bigger than the recent recessions. I worried that the unemployment rate might rise to be about 8 to 9 percent. Right now it’s only 6.1 percent. So it’s going to be severe and we’ll have hundreds of smaller financial institutions (INAUDIBLE) are going to go bankrupt. And even some of the regional banks might be in severe trouble, might have to be closed down or merged with other institutions. So this is a severe crisis.

  274. kettle1 says:

    follow up to 276 (for you skeptic)

    “you are a s1ave. Like everyone else you were born into b0ndage. Into a prison that you cannot taste or see or touch. A prison for your mind”

  275. John says:

    Red is the sign of death in parts of Asia. With my Japanese clients writing on a report in red ink means someone in the room will soon die. Not very popular.

  276. John says:

    Six governors ask Treasury for aid to auto makers:

  277. kettle1 says:

    Deutsche Bank kicks off funny accounting season

    Welcome to the world of make-believe.

    Deutsche Bank was supposed to report a loss in the third quarter. That would be no great shame or shock as banks across the globe have been hammered at a time of worldwide economic turmoil. And Deutsche Bank, alone of the firms with a major presence on Wall Street, hasn’t needed a capital infusion from investors during the credit crisis. But the Frankfurt giant managed to turn a third-quarter profit of $575 million, and that’s because it took advantage of a new European Union accounting change.

    Deutsche Bank was able to shift 825 million euros, or roughly $1.1 billion, in assets before tax to its loan book from its trading book — meaning that it doesn’t have to take a write-off on the mark-to-market value of those securities, whatever they were. Certainly, Deutsche Bank shouldn’t be criticized for doing so. They weren’t just taking advantage of some loophole — the rule change was actively designed for banks to shift assets around.

    http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/deutsche-bank-kicks-off-funny/story.aspx?guid=%7BA08843D8-9B71-42DC-8040-6FA77F999FD5%7D&dist=msr_1

  278. SG says:


    Financial crisis management: Lessons from Japan’s failure

    How far will housing prices in the US fall? If we base our projections on the trend line of the 1990s, they should pick up by 2011 at the latest. But this reasoning reminds me of a similar mindset in the early 1990s in Japan. When Japan’s real estate bubble burst in 1991, the trend line indicated that land prices would bottom out around 1995, when in fact they continued to decline steadily for 12 more years.

  279. Stu says:

    Kettle1:

    “The average person is the equivalent of a chimp raised in captivity. its all the chimp has known and is more or less comfortable with it.”

    I have used this argument when arguing with Lisa over the potential spoiling of our 3-year old. I constantly use the example of some Mayan kids we witnessed in the Yucatan Peninsula. Their lives were wholly unchanged from that of 2,000 years ago. They eat almost nothing but tortillas, live in straw huts with mud floors and are happy as clams. Why? They know little of what is outside of their village and have no means to obtain creature comforts.

    I know that it is an extreme example, but it keeps one from buying an inflatable bouncy-house for their only child. Many of our neighbors have done this already to the tune of $500.

  280. Stu says:

    Gator called…She is safe, for the time being. Appreciate your concerns.

  281. John says:

    Hey Stu just come to my house and watch the Mexicans poop and pee in my yard, it is just like 2000 years ago!

  282. grim says:

    I’ve got an idea, why don’t we allow underwater homeowners to hang a “BANK” sign over their front door and participate in the TARP too!

    Problem solved!

    From Bloomberg:

    GMAC May Seek `Significant’ Capital in Banking Effort

    GMAC Financial Services, the auto and home lender shut out of some credit markets, said it may raise “significant amounts of additional capital” as part of an effort to become a bank holding company.

    GMAC will exchange much of its existing debt for a reduced amount of new debt, the company said in a statement today. The lender has $52 billion of outstanding bonds, including $10.9 billion that mature in 2009, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Details of the fundraising will be disclosed “in the near future,” the Detroit-based company said.

    Becoming a bank holding company would make it easier for GMAC to participate in the Treasury Department’s banking- industry rescue and quell doubts about the lender’s survival. The firm could also get direct loans from the Federal Reserve and debt guarantees from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

  283. grim says:

    I know that it is an extreme example, but it keeps one from buying an inflatable bouncy-house for their only child.

    My Bugaboonomics textbook calls you an “outlier”.

  284. Stu says:

    Not that again John. Come to India some time. It is completely acceptable to whip it out in the street and let it loose. Most will at least squat when making #2.

  285. Shore Guy says:

    “back to using the word ‘reform.'”

  286. Shore Guy says:

    “back to using the word ‘reform.'”

  287. Stu says:

    Borgata revenue down 27% from prior year. Boyd reports decline of 73% in the third quarter for all of their properties.

  288. Shore Guy says:

    “back to using the word ‘reform.’”

    With the fervor of BO’s minions, the catchphrase may soon be “reeducation.”

  289. SG says:

    Standby for financial help from the NJ governor – Jon Corzine (D-NJ) – the Goldman Sachs wiz. Under him NJ has added a death tax – you die in NJ you owe the state $30; he increase the sales tax to pay for a tax rebate, and we’ve added sales taxes to some surgeries. To help our nearly bankrupt situation – he was going to close state parks to save $4 million while building a new state park for $87 million; he was going to close the NJ Dept of Agriculture – in the Garden State! – to save $4 million while costing the state $10 million in federal aid. NJ is in the Top 10 for worst financial situation. Corzine is hoping to become some financial guru in the Obama administration. Many New Jerseyans will be happy to see him leave the state. But standby for that financial wiz to take the helm of the federal finances. And by the way – under Corzine – NJ has helped one of its major underprivileged groups – teen girls (16+) with small breasts may now get breast enhancement surgery without parental consent. Thank God!

    http://www.americandaily.com/article/23430

  290. Shore Guy says:

    Stu,

    Remind me why I should travel to India?

  291. Shore Guy says:

    Stu,

    Should we go out and buy a few copies of the New Yorker?

  292. BC Bob says:

    “Hey Stu just come to my house and watch the Mexicans poop and pee in my yard, it is just like 2000 years ago!”

    Why do I picture the video; Mexican pulling up to the corner, looking to hire an accountant for the day.

  293. grim says:

    Borgata revenue down 27% from prior year.

    Not due to the slowing economy at all. Frank had a couple of good weekends this past quarter is all.

  294. Shore Guy says:

    I just had an image of investment bankers hanging out in Battery Park each morning as limos pull up looking up to hire day bankers. If they do a good job, they get hired the next day.

  295. Shore Guy says:

    Consider the source, but:

    As the candidates make their closing arguments before the election, the race has tightened with Barack Obama now leading John McCain by 47 percent to 44 percent among likely voters, according to a FOX News poll released Thursday. Last week Obama led by 49-40 percent among likely voters.

    snip

  296. grim says:

    Why do I picture the video; Mexican pulling up to the corner, looking to hire an accountant for the day.

    One of my favorite blog videos. Right up there with Dirty Jersey by Chunky Pam.

  297. SG says:

    As the Japanese can explain from their own experience of the mid 1990s, you can pour all the money you want into tottering banks and brokers, but when they are paralyzed by fear and will do nothing but lend back to the government, it does little for your economy.

    As the Koreans and Thais can easily testify given their own recent traumas, the United States cannot recover from the mess it is in without more savings — another way of saying less consumption. That in turn means the U.S. after 40 years of profligacy will have to export more than it imports. For this to happen, much of the production capacity that has been steadily transferred to Asia over the last fifty years will have to be repatriated back to the United States so that Americans will have enough factories again in which to go to work to pay off the debts that their politicians and bankers so recklessly ran up. Otherwise, all those dollars Asia holds will quickly be worth very little.

    http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/murphy271008.html

  298. william says:

    The problem is the immense population….we need to split the country up into quadrants…then form 4 new countries :)

  299. Shore Guy says:

    (goes with link above)

    Consider the source, but:

    As the candidates make their closing arguments before the election, the race has tightened with BO now leading JM by 47 percent to 44 percent among likely voters, according to a FOX News poll released Thursday. Last week O led by 49-40 percent among likely voters.

    snip

  300. Shore Guy says:

    http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/10/30/fox-news-poll-o*bam*as-edge-mc*ca*in-narrows/

    The missing link. remove the *s

    Perhaps we are being prepared for a Diebold miracle

  301. william says:

    272—i was fairly serious about that……you have to take things in a blitzkrieg fashion…Hitler proved that…but he spread his army too thin

  302. william says:

    if you take over all of the districts politically, who would be the opposition?

  303. william says:

    oops…kinda sounds like a totalitarian govt though :)

  304. william says:

    274—LOL

  305. SG says:

    Figures released on Thursday October 30th showed that America’s economy shrank at an annualised rate of 0.3% in the third quarter. The story behind the breakdown was a far sharper decline in consumer spending, which makes up around two-thirds of GDP. It fell at an annualised rate of 3.1%, the first decline since 1991 and the biggest drop since 1980.

    http://www.economist.com/world/unitedstates/displayStory.cfm?story_id=12536256&source=features_box1

    Spending declined first time since 1991, Ouch.

  306. BC Bob says:

    SG [301],

    Yes, we have been Nipponised.

    The main difference, Japan had a positive current account balance and savings to draw upon while they were in the can. On the flip side, we will are financing a negative current accout balance and are buried in debt, the world’s largest debtor nation. Troubling, as we stare down the barrel of a long, deep recession.

  307. william says:

    289—-omg John, although that statement is so damn wrong…i had a guilty pleasure in laughing at it out loud

  308. NJGator says:

    203 Shore – Yes, relatively speaking, for now. Although I don’t think anyone should consider themselves safe these days.

    Thanks for asking.

  309. william says:

    shore says—I just had an image of investment bankers hanging out in Battery Park…

    I had an image of them just hanging in the park

  310. 3b says:

    #252 BC Bob: And to think that I thought these clowns were past the are we in a recession arguement. But hey at 89% I guess we are getting there.

  311. sean says:

    All this talk of Mexicans, and Indians reminds me of this news story out of Japan, seems they are more afraid of not being able to save face and find a toilet than the actual earthquake.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081028/ap_on_re_as/as_japan_toilet_refugees_2

  312. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [259] skep

    now that is some great analysis. Very thought provoking.

    [294] shore

    Read the blogs–reeducation has already started.

  313. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [284] stu

    Tell me about it. The lil nom met a neighbor’s kids who had a playhouse in the back that was a ski chalet writ small. I swear this thing would pass building codes and Dad said they contemplated putting in electric. Another neighbor has a virtual kid city in the back. This is what I have to avoid competing with.

    So far, Lil Nom is happy with the refrigerator box turned into a 2 room castle, but for how long?

  314. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Yellen says economy will probably shrink in fourth quarter

    SF Fed’s Yellen calls recent data “deeply worrisome”

  315. Nicholas says:

    Nom,

    Seems like your dealing with an issue that has been around for quite some time. Its the struggle between the rich and the neuvo rich. Those that are born into money don’t think the same as those who have to earn it.

    I was happy running around in the backyard picking up leaves and pretending they were money. I would fly around with my arms outstreched like an airplane and would pay my mother (in decaying leaves) to fill me back up with fuel.

    Toys are worthless, imagination is priceless.

  316. Nicholas says:

    Think that stocks will tank in afternoon trading again?

  317. william says:

    nicholas—very true…never forget…we will never get in their “club” when we realize that we can change things.

  318. william says:

    i remember being totally happy with a magnifying glass and an ant pile….

  319. AAF says:

    Hi! Been reading this blog every day (pretty much all day) for about 2 years now. You all feel like family. Its really an informative venue, I’ve told many people about this blog.
    Thought I’d introduce myself. A little background ….Began seriously looking for a home about a year ago, I decided to educate myself further by obtaining a real estate sales license. Had to do it in NY though as my employer was paying for the course. I learned some, but looking back I dont think it was a necessary step. Judging by the piece of s*t houses that are on the market for my price range ($400k or less preferably a 2 fam with parking and a yard), I should have take a construction / renovation course.
    I watched all my friends purchase houses / condos that I had no idea how they could afford, turns out they can’t. Surprise. And I am sooooo thankful I never took that step then, something told me I couldnt afford a $600k condo in hoboken. That something was my paycheck.(ha) Decided to wait until I had a little more saved.
    Always knew the prices in the Hudson Co. area were out of control, but the commute into the city is fantastic. (those mini vans on Boulevard East are amazing and basically run 24 hrs). After putting in a few bids at roughly 30% lower than asking (determined that figure by reading this blog) and being basically laughed at by sellers I was beginning to think that all was lost.
    But then an interesting thing happened….. the world went to hell and I’m getting kind of excited about house hunting again.
    Sorry for the long post, will be shorter in future postings.

  320. BC Bob says:

    “SF Fed’s Yellen calls recent data “deeply worrisome””

    If Janet is Yellen it’s time to be Sellen.

  321. Stu says:

    Nicholas:

    Sure looks that way.

    Nom,

    My parents played bridge a lot when I was growing up. Rather than hire a baby sitter, they used to drag me along to where ever the game was. I spent a good amount of my youth building card houses and knocking them down by shooting them with the rubber bands that held the old decks of cards together. To this day, I can still build card houses about 7 levels tall and in all different styles. I learned a lot about engineering and structure through this practice.

  322. Nicholas says:

    I don’t think it is a club William. It is the sum of your experiences that trap you into a certain mindset.

    When you have nothing and build a store of wealth enabling freedom for you and your family you see things differently. When it comes to your children there is a certain amount of disgust at the wastefulness and the perceived disrespect for the amount of suffering you had to go through to provide it.

    From the child’s perspective he doesn’t see what has your “panties in a bunch” over the little things. It is not necessarily wastefulness and it isn’t even a sense of entitlement. It is something deeper, you want him to hurt just the way you did to acheive the ends so that he will cherish it as much as you did.

    Problem is that it turns you into a sadistic meanie.

  323. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [319] My one hope from this crash is that conspicuous consumption goes out of style for HENRYs, so that my girls can’t use the fact that their friends have so much more, and they are laughingstocks for looking poor as excuses to weasel more out of Dad’s wallet.

  324. Stu says:

    San Francisco Fed President Yellen stated in a speech that recent economic data is deeply worrisome and the economy is likely to contract significantly in the fourth quarter. Yellen also stated the impact of credit conditions has outpaced the Fed’s moves to lower rates.
    ——————————————-
    AIG (AIG 1.65, +0.10) disclosed it has applied for participation in the Federal Reserve’s commercial paper funding facility. According to sources, the company has already drawn down more than $85 billion in loans from the Fed, more than it initially planned. AIG shares are down more than 95% year-to-date

  325. kettle1 says:

    Sean,

    Yoou use the same technuique the current pols do.

    Shore guy and i run against each other. regardless of who losses we both win. You do this for each position.

    Stu and Gary can run against each other as press secretary.

    this is the same thing the dems and reps do. it locks out 3rd parties and provides the illusion of choice.

  326. Nicholas says:

    HENRYs? I don’t understand the terminology.

    The best thing you can give to your girls are a sense of self-respect and fiscal responsibility. Make them earn it rather then hand it to them.

  327. 3b says:

    #317 Comrade Nom: So far, Lil Nom is happy with the refrigerator box turned into a 2 room castle, but for how long?

    Until the other Dad and family are living in the kid city in the back;maybe he should go with the electric.

  328. william says:

    I had a 4 dollar army man set…I’d spend hours setting up two opposing armies along with my lego blocks…then after admiring my work I would use my rubberband gun to fire into the mix…damn those were the days.

  329. Stu says:

    “Stu and Gary can run against each other as press secretary.”

    I plan to wear parachute pants in an american flag pattern.

  330. Stu says:

    Of course if Gary dons his cheerleader outfit, I may be in trouble.

    One thing is for sure. Bi and his black box needs to replace Bernanke on inauguration day.

  331. kettle1 says:

    330 was for willioam

    meant william ( was talking to a sean while typing)

    # kettle1 Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    Sean,

    Yoou use the same technuique the current pols do.

    Shore guy and i run against each other. regardless of who losses we both win. You do this for each position.

    Stu and Gary can run against each other as press secretary.

    this is the same thing the dems and reps do. it locks out 3rd parties and provides the illusion of choice.

  332. kettle1 says:

    these guys are F’ing suicidal!

    Citigroup, Credit Suisse Link Loans to Swaps in Shift

    Citigroup Inc. and Credit Suisse Group AG are among banks tying corporate loan rates to credit- default swaps, raising borrowing costs and exposing companies to derivatives accused of crippling the financial system. Nestle SA, the biggest food producer, Nokia Oyj, the largest mobile-phone maker, FirstEnergy Corp., the Ohio-based owner of electric utilities, and at least three other companies bowed to banks’ demands to link the interest rate on credit lines to the swaps, which are used to bet on borrowers’ likelihood of default.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601009&refer=bond&sid=a1zQ3Jykfb7Y

  333. william says:

    332—kettle—again right on the money!!

  334. kettle1 says:

    here comes that boring shipping issue again….

    Credit ‘Tsunami’ Swamps Trade as Banks Curtail Loans

    Richard Burnett’s lumber company had started loading wood onto ships heading for China. More was en route to the docks. It was all part of an order that would fill 100 40-foot cargo containers. Then Burnett got a call from his buyer at Shanghai VIVA Wood Products Co. The deal was dead. He told Burnett, president of Cross Creek Sales LLC in Augusta, Georgia, he couldn’t get a letter of credit to guarantee payment for at least six months.

    “It was like a spigot got cut off,” Burnett said, recounting the transaction that fell apart in July. The inability of buyers in China and Vietnam to get letters of credit has cost his company as much as $4 million this year, a third of projected revenue, forcing him to lay off 15 of 35 employees, he said. Suppliers of oil, coal, grains and consumer products from Chicago to Mumbai are losing sales as the credit crisis spreads beyond financial institutions, and banks refuse financing or increase the fees for buyers. Coupled with declining demand, the credit squeeze is threatening international trade, one of the lone bright spots in the global economy.

    “It’s like standing on a beach watching a tsunami, knowing that it’s coming,” said Scott Stevenson, manager of the International Finance Corp.’s Global Trade Finance Program. IFC is the World Bank’s private lending arm. Emerging markets such as Brazil, Vietnam and South Africa are particularly vulnerable because buyers have more trouble proving their financial strength. The slowdown is also damaging the U.S., the world’s largest economy, where exports accounted for almost two-thirds of the 2.1 percent growth in gross domestic product in the 12 months through June, according to the U.S. Trade Representative’s office.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&refer=home&sid=aPA4NMYtDIS4

  335. kettle1 says:

    oops

    Fears mount in Japan over complex yen products

    Traders in Tokyo have given warning that about $90 billion (£55billion) of complex foreign exchange products, sold mainly to Japanese households and institutions, are on the brink of falling “like a house of cards”. A rescue effort by the product issuers – large Japanese, European and American investment banks – is expected to involve extensive hedging measures that will throw global currency markets into even deeper turmoil.

    http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/markets/japan/article5042278.ece

  336. kettle1 says:

    surprised?

    A Question for A.I.G.: Where Did the Cash Go?

    The American International Group is rapidly running through $123 billion in emergency lending provided by the Federal Reserve, raising questions about how a company claiming to be solvent in September could have developed such a big hole by October. Some analysts say at least part of the shortfall must have been there all along, hidden by irregular accounting.

    “You don’t just suddenly lose $120 billion overnight,” said Donn Vickrey of Gradient Analytics, an independent securities research firm in Scottsdale, Ariz. Mr. Vickrey says he believes A.I.G. must have already accumulated tens of billions of dollars worth of losses by mid-September, when it came close to collapse and received an $85 billion emergency line of credit by the Fed. That loan was later supplemented by a $38 billion lending facility.

    But losses on that scale do not show up in the company’s financial filings. Instead, A.I.G. replenished its capital by issuing $20 billion in stock and debt in May and reassured investors that it had an ample cushion. It also said that it was making its accounting more precise. Mr. Vickery and other analysts are examining the company’s disclosures for clues that the cushion was threadbare and that company officials knew they had major losses months before the bailout.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/30/business/30aig.html?_r=1&oref=slogin&ref=business&pagewanted=all

  337. kettle1 says:

    make money,

    Got a secret bunker ready for your Perth stash yet? better get moving….. i can offer you a great rate on a Dominica location ;)

    “In the third weekend of November, leaders of the G-20 nations will assemble in Washington for urgent economic talks. There may even be calls for a new Breton Woods… It is likely that a major debasement of all currencies will be undertaken to rescue the global economy and with it, the world’s politicians. As this proposal gathers momentum, gold is likely to explode in price.

    However,… politicians the world over are likely to create international rules designed to preclude the holders of gold from making “windfall profits.”

    Therefore, holders of gold should renew their efforts to ensure their holdings of gold are as isolated as possible from the long, greedy arm of the law.”

    http://europac.net/externalframeset.asp?from=home&id=14477

  338. william says:

    kettle–I think what your posts do for me is that they make me realize that what the world is doing is really standing in the middle of a raging forest fire manned with hoses, shovels and buckets of water…they fight it back for a while…but in the end it will consume them…and a new order will arise from the ashes

  339. Outofstater says:

    Just a thought – what if American industry doesn’t matter because we don’t really need it anymore? Cars, machine tools, etc can be manufactured just as well and at lower cost elsewhere. Are we finally at the end of the industrial economy but not quite completely into the new, internet-based information economy? The life of the mind, instead of the life of the factory. Could these wild economic gyrations be like birth pains? Or is that just wishful thinking and we really are well and truly f####ed?

  340. bklynhawk says:

    OT-

    Thought I’d post here since we have a few people with opinions around here.

    This idea comes from Oregon for all you Lord of the Rings fans…Enjoy and let’s hear what you think…

    http://www.bendshire.com/

  341. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [330]

    HENRYs–High Earners, Not Rich Yet

    (unless you are a democrat, then they are rich)

    I think I am well under way with the self respect and fiscal discipline, at least with the 5YO. The bun in the oven, not so much.

  342. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [343] Pretty close to my compound concept but with a lot less common land for farming and timbering.

  343. BC Bob says:

    kettle [339],

    Japan’s SIV.

    The world is one titanic [no pun or is it?], carry trade. The forint, Hungary, has collapsed. 90% of the mortgages, in Hungary, are denominated in SF. John Q not only pays piti but he also carries a spec fx position, one that just got blown out of the water. You can’t make this s*it up. You can bet bankers all over the world were structuring similar packages in their countries.

    The world’s currency markets are a keg of dynamite. The coming explosion will blow the doors off the Richter scale.

  344. Shore Guy says:

    “A Question for A.I.G.: Where Did the Cash Go?”

    Properties in nations without extradition agreements with the US?

  345. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [332]

    “damn those were the days.”

    I think I will get my electric trains out of storage.

  346. Shore Guy says:

    “unless you are a democrat, then they are rich”

    Or, soon will be “used to be rich.”

  347. kettle1 says:

    I say we use the patriot act. Declare the banks as enemy combatants (who happen to have 0 legal rights) and then use the patriot act II to confiscate all financial gains. There is plenty of room in GITMO.

    We have the law, might as well use it.

  348. kettle1 says:

    # william Says:

    kettle–I think what your posts do for me is that they make me realize that what the world is doing is really standing in the middle of a raging forest fire manned with hoses, shovels and buckets of water…they fight it back for a while…but in the end it will consume them…and a new order will arise from the ashes

    So you are saying i drive you to drink?.?.?.?

    sorry ;)

  349. kettle1 says:

    Hawk,

    Shire idea has promise. i would consider buying into something like that.

  350. Shore Guy says:

    9180. The recession must be over.

  351. John says:

    Interesting. However since I have never been inside a factory or even met someone who works in a factory or even knows someone who knows someone who works in a factory how do I even know factories exist? I assume the car company has some big fancy place somewhere that produced my car but to me it is like a concept like free will or heaven or hell, not something that I ever will know if it actually exists.

    Outofstater Says:
    October 30th, 2008 at 4:11 pm
    Just a thought – what if American industry doesn’t matter because we don’t really need it anymore? Cars, machine tools, etc can be manufactured just as well and at lower cost elsewhere. Are we finally at the end of the industrial economy but not quite completely into the new, internet-based information economy? The life of the mind, instead of the life of the factory. Could these wild economic gyrations be like birth pains? Or is that just wishful thinking and we really are well and truly f####ed?

  352. Shore Guy says:

    Did anyone hear the NY governor 1) ask congress to bail out the NY state government and 2) say that in four years NY’s budget gap will be something like $50 billion. $50 billion shortfall. How friggen big is the budget and how the heck can they close a gap like that?

  353. william says:

    356–no kettle—it excites me because I think through a little pain we are going to emerge much stronger….plus I kinda wanna see the gallows brought back for the 21st century :)

  354. Outofstater says:

    #286 Stu – Forget the fancy toys for kids – they won’t use them. The old no-tech simple toys are the best because they require imagination and creativity – blocks, crayons, Legos, toy trucks or even a big bowl of dry beans and some measuring cups.

  355. william says:

    355 i mean

  356. John says:

    The recession has ended, please keep moving along. E class or 5 series please with a Caddie Escalade for the wife to tote her 2.5 children around in.

  357. skep-tic says:

    #359

    “Did anyone hear the NY governor 1) ask congress to bail out the NY state government and 2) say that in four years NY’s budget gap will be something like $50 billion. $50 billion shortfall. How friggen big is the budget and how the heck can they close a gap like that?”

    I wonder if they will start a commuter tax on NY workers who live out of state

  358. 3b says:

    #362 It starts again next week (unemployment numbers), better buy now.

  359. kettle1 says:

    shore

    NY’s budget gap will be something like $50 billion. $50 billion shortfall. How friggen big is the budget and how the heck can they close a gap like that?

    spend only what you have.

    easy answers to easy questions (credit NJP)

    shall we go ahead and change NYC’s name to gotham?

  360. Nicholas says:

    The Shire,

    I read a while back that this concept, and it remains just that, fell through. There was alot of initial interest in building a community around the LOTR lore but all that actually was built was a few hobbit holes.

    From what you can see in their website most, if not all of it, is concept art.

    Move along nothing to see here except advertising. Get back into your E class, 5 series, or Caddie Escalade and go home.

  361. renter says:

    321
    Maybe he will always be happy. Sometimes it is hard to hold the line. We sent our daughter on a field trip with a dollar because the teacher told us to send a dollar. My daughter comes home and begins crying when she tells me that the other kids had twenty dollar bills to spend in the gift shop. The other kids told her she couldn’t buy anything nice with $20 and questioned why we didn’t give her more.

  362. Shore Guy says:

    “I wonder if they will start a commuter tax on NY workers who live out of state”

    One more thing to make RE in NJ train towns more apppealing.

  363. renter says:

    I have been in plenty of factories. They exist.

  364. skep-tic says:

    NY is in a bind. It is already one of the most heavily taxed states. I do not see how raising taxes would result in any long term increase in revenue– more likely to drive business out to places like Stamford.

  365. william says:

    renter—-the problem there was the teacher…this is what is wrong…the leader did not enforce the rule

  366. skep-tic says:

    is the E class a chick car? I sort of think so.

  367. william says:

    because those other kids thought they were a more special snowflake—-its all coming together now

  368. Nicholas says:

    367 Renter,

    Maybe you should wait till her tears pass and her bruised ego heals and have a heart-to-heart discussion about things sold in the giftshop and their lack of utility.

    You should also talk about the value of money and maybe do a comparison dollar for dollar vs. other things you could buy with that 20$.

    Help her come to rationalize in her own mind that 20$ allows her to watch cable for 15 days and that if she would like to have 20$ to spend on useless crap at the giftstore then you could give it to her if she agreed not to watch TV for 15 days.

    If TV isn’t her thing, say maybe she loves to play with her dolls, then ask her to sell you back one of her favorite dolls in exchange for the 20$ you will shell out to her. Not one of the crappy ones either one of her new ones.

    Pick your battle, the result is the same. It doesn’t take them very long to realize that opportunity cost quickly erodes them of everything that they own and they become alot more resolute to the remarks of kids at school because understanding has replaced greed.

  369. Nicholas says:

    It is not the teachers fault, period.

  370. renter says:

    I don’t think the parents follow the rules.

    The same thing happened at summer camp. The camp told us not to send any electronic devices with them. She comes home and tells us all the kids had ipods and $200+ portable computer games. The parents don’t follow the rules and the camp can’t say anything because these are the people who pay for the camp.

  371. william says:

    nicholas—–Pick your battle, the result is the same. It doesn’t take them very long to realize that opportunity cost quickly erodes them of everything that they own and they become alot more resolute to the remarks of kids at school because understanding has replaced greed.

    Discipline ever work? Last time i tried to rationalize with my nephew it didnt work well..but when I spanked him he listened…

    just a thought

  372. william says:

    375—ure wrong there…i simply won’t agree with that

  373. renter says:

    Nicholas,

    I have been slowly trying to explain the value of money. I showed her two beach towels at the store. One had a character and one was plain. I told her they both had the same utility but the character one cost $5 more. I think she understood that.

  374. william says:

    she set a rule and let kids break it—thats wrong!!

  375. william says:

    I’ll even go on a limb Nicholas and say that although your intentions are good—-they hold zero water….you are giving power back to entities that do not know what right or wrong is

  376. Nicholas says:

    I think that corporal punishment has its place but in this case would you spank your kid because everyone else got 20$? I would hope not.

    That type of punishment should probably be reserved for when the child is exhibiting behavoir that is likely to cause permanent damage to themselves or someone else. Ask them to stop the behavoir in a serious manner, if they don’t listen give ’em the stick. Let them know that you expect them not to do it again because you don’t want them to get hurt. A little pain on the bottom to keep them from a lot of pain elsewhere.

    Discipline takes many forms, I would say it takes more discipline to instruct the kid on financial matters then it would to beat them into submission.

    Don’t mistake one for the other.

  377. william says:

    you are wrong…period to say that the teacher was not at fault

  378. william says:

    It is the same correlation with our Government—-people in power have let people run amuck all the while causing people who follow the rules to suffer

  379. renter says:

    The point I was trying to make is that there is a lot of money and stuff thrown at young kids. If you don’t participate then the kids feel odd and cry etc. The parents then give in. One mother said to me “I can’t believe I am having a conversation with my eight year old on why she can’t have a cell phone.”
    I

  380. kettle1 says:

    William

    Discipline ever work? Last time i tried to rationalize with my nephew it didnt work well..but when I spanked him he listened…

    if the parents have never expected logical behavior and encouraged such behavior (logical exploration) then a child will not respond to a logical argument the first time you try.

    just because you were taught to swim and do so regularly does not mean that your nephew has been taught to swim or done so regularly.

    this is the same problem with many adults in the US and our education system. We do not teach logical thought. Logic is not obvious to most people and if not taught to them they will not follow or readily grasp the consequences of a logical argument (i.e emotional house buying as opposed to treating it like a business deal)

  381. Nicholas says:

    They say not to bring electronic devices on those types of trips to protect themselves. They are then not legally responsible if they are damaged due to weather, become lost, or are stolen.

    They probably don’t want to pay the electric bill to charge your kids electronic devices either.

  382. william says:

    It’s the same with women—they let emotion get in the way of logic…….take emotion(love for your chilsd) out of the picture for a moment and you saee the wrong that was done. Then you go to the teacher and promptly tell her she was inept…hell i guess that’s just me

  383. william says:

    jesus I guess I will just go and drink……

  384. kettle1 says:

    humans are NOT logical creatures by nature, most of us must learn it.

  385. william says:

    Now I know why London, Hemmingway, Kerouac…all just drank into oblivion…its easier than dealing with illogical people

  386. renter says:

    I would never hit her for this. She is a baby trying to deal with things big people have trouble with. Grown ups have trouble with this. Isn’t this a constant theme on the blog? People are willing to put themselves in a precarious position to have this or that.

  387. skep-tic says:

    dude, teachers can’t control how much money parents give their kids. if the teacher tried to ban the kids from buying stuff in the gift shop the parents would be on the phone screaming at the teacher for that. the problem is the parents are weak/indulgent and your own child is too young to understand this and blames you instead. the right thing to do (but the hard thing) is to have your kid hate you for an hour

  388. kettle1 says:

    william,

    dont take us personally we get a little spirited around here. always good to have another contributor!!!!

    spirited debate is just another learning opportunity

  389. william says:

    oh i don’t I actually LOVE this blog….its the best thing since sliced bread!!!!

    I’m just real passionate and opinionated and I really don’t mean to be a dick :)

  390. william says:

    393—then she needs to grow a pair imo

  391. kettle1 says:

    Will,

    dont worry we arent shy. someone will tell you if they think you are being a dick. :)

  392. Nicholas says:

    Renter,

    When I got older, say about my young teens, I became a terrible kid, master manipulator, and a quick study. I could smell when my parents would relent and fork over the cash.

    I would cry and complain about all the injustice in the world as long as it would get me to my intended goal.

    I learned that if I called my stepmother “Mom” she would give me anything I wanted but I had to reserve that for special requests.

    Most all kids I have known are the same way, they continually test their boundaries and try to manipulate the gains in their favor. The important thing is to set boundaries and rules that are reflexive and not static.

    A static rule that is broken once, “Okay, but just this one time”, is broken forever. A reflexive rule can change or negate itself once but carries real-world consequences. “I know you already spent your allowance and you can have this 20$ but you have to give me one of the music CDs you bought over the summer”. The rule is bent but not broken and soon the child doesn’t have any more CDs that they want to part with, their supply exhausted.

    Eventually the child finds themselves setting their own boundaries even though you helped by creating the system.

  393. william says:

    If someone can move me off a stance with an argument that makes logical sense..it helps me learn to be wrong …..but the argument that the teacher wasn’t wrong hasn’t budged me yet

  394. william says:

    PS—A New Earth…by Eckhart Tolle is really good…I was skeptical because it said Oprah on it…but damn was that a cool book for me

  395. renter says:

    393
    Sensible comment.

    William,

    The parents would have had the teacher for lunch if she said anything. I don’t blame her at all. She has a really hard job just teaching.

  396. NJGator says:

    368 Shore – Re: NY Commuter Tax – those of us who work in NYC and live in NJ already pay NYS taxes. We used to pay a NYC commuter tax as well. Guiliani asked the state to eliminate that tax (it was paid by NY suburbanites as well) during the economic boom before 9/11. Bloomberg wanted to restore it when we took over, but NYC cannot reinstate it itself. They need the NYS Legislature to pass it, which will be very difficult to accomplish. This was a much hated tax by NY suburbanites and their Reps are unlikely to vote for it, and I do not believe it is legal to tax just the out of staters.

  397. Nicholas says:

    Q: Teacher, how much money is required on the field trip.

    A: I would say 1$ is the minimum required, as a “just in case” (just in case they get lost and need to call you for a ride which costs 75 cents for a 3 minute phone call).

    Lunch will be at its regular spot in the school cafeteria and then we will spend the afternoon at the museum.

    The teacher hasn’t done anything wrong, there was no upper limit on the amount of money you could give your child.

  398. John says:

    The eclass is a chick car. Lots of old badly tanned ladies driving silver eclasses by me. A nice blue understated 5 series seems to be the choice of professional men. Of course the X. But I tell you what I would not kick a 09 V series CTS out of my driveway. JC it has a top speed of 191mph with lots of cupholders and a big back seat. Disney world almost 1,000 miles away but in the CTS V series I could do that in less than 5 hours. NICE!! Heck it is all downhill to Florida so I say maybe less than 4 hours.

  399. Nicholas says:

    William’s big book of parenting:

    http://www.cartoonstock.com/lowres/rjo0544l.jpg

  400. william says:

    401—IMO if you cannot do what is right or just…you shouldn’t do the job…or you should do the job in the right way…be prepared to be fired…but since you are out of debt you don’t have to worry because you can get a new job and you can keep your principles and ethics

  401. skep-tic says:

    my wife taught middle school in a rich district and all of the kids were super spoiled. Their parents were insane. they wanted to shield their kids from even the slightest hardship or criticism. Every kid was a genius and deserved an A, but also had too much homework and was too stressed out. If a kid wouldn’t behave in class, it was because the class was too hard or not hard enough or if no other excuse worked the kid magically one day had some kind of disorder. Not saying this to be sexist, but really the moms were driving this. My wife would be in meetings with both parents and she would describe the wife going off on how hard her kid’s life was and the husband just quietly looking on in a sort of disbelief. This was a town where none of the wives worked and they were just way too obsessed with crafting the perfect world for their kids. well, it was backfiring big time and all of those kids will be in therapy in 10 years because life turned out to be way more difficult than they were led to believe. My wife is now a stay at home mom so I worry about this a bit, but she has seen first hand many examples of what overindulgence can do to kids so hopefully we will take that lesson to heart.

  402. renter says:

    Nicholas,

    The teacher said something about bringing a dollar if they wanted to get something. The teacher has to work with the norms of society. Apparently the norm today is to give your child $20 for a field trip. They probably say to bring a $1 so parents unable to bring more don’t get angry…a hedge.

  403. Nicholas says:

    Cupholders? Cupholders?!?

    You don’t put cup holders in a machine like that, thats sacrelidge.

  404. william says:

    I can actually correlate being in debt everything that is wrong with society

  405. william says:

    with

  406. Nicholas says:

    Hmm,

    Tell you what, my wife is a teacher and I will ask her when she gets home what she would have done.

    You probably would get a better answer from her then everyone except Skep and possibly Cindy.

    I still contend that inadvertently the teachers actions opened an opportunity for you to have a meaningful conversation with your daughter.

  407. william says:

    kettle made a profound statement about special snowflakes earlier…….it hit home.

  408. william says:

    nicholas—I never said you couldn’t have that conversation did i?? I didn’t mean it to come out that way at all if it did….conversating is fine, but setting in the principles, morals and ethics is critical…even if I have to explain the situation with the damn TEACHER in the room.

  409. william says:

    The fascinating thing is that a simple story like that can be so profound….

  410. skep-tic says:

    i am assuming renter is in a well off district since all of the kids are getting $20 to use in the gift shop. one thing it seems that teachers in these districts learn pretty quickly is to not pick fights with parents unless absolutely necessary. a lot of these people are crazy and try to get teachers fired on a regular basis for doing things like giving their kids a B+. I cannot imagine many teachers thinking it is worth it to get in a kids face about their parents giving them $20. These standards are really set at home and if a parent is intent on spoiling their kid there is not much you can do.

  411. william says:

    comment 227 i found it…read that comment again

  412. william says:

    416—and i would take a bullet for my clients and they know that—-that is the difference

  413. Nicholas says:

    Renter,

    Wife home and I posed the same question to her to find out her take on the situation and what the norm is for most school systems.

    She says that normally in all the school systems that she has participated in that there is a hard rule that purchases at the giftshops are not allowed. Often there are children in the school that wouldn’t be able to attend the field trip without funding from the PTA or other organizations. Those children don’t have the option of getting money to buy things at the giftshop and to spare the child they make a hard and fast rule of “No purchases”.

    In lieu of a school policy on the matter, the teacher should set a maximum amount of money to bring. If possible the maximum should be zero and they should avoid purchases at the giftshop.

    She also said you should talk with the teacher to understand how policy is set at your school and use this opportunity to let her know how it affected your child.

    At the same time she said that you should use this opportunity to talk with your child about money and how it made them feel when they had less then others.

    My wife works in early childhood education, Kindergarten through third grade. The rules may change for older kids. She claims that Elementary Schools that is the standard practice.

    Hope that helps…

  414. william says:

    Because I am not in debt—I have released all of my material items (i live like a monk)–I have been able to amass a sizeable savings. With that power I can play the game on my terms because if I’m fired…I’m free to get another job without being strapped to the hilt in debt…With this power I can keep doing the right thing instead of compromising my morals for corporate America, or worrying about some rich idiot getting me fired….that’s freedom to me

  415. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (386)-

    Because the knowledge and wisdom that comes from logical thought make people very hard to control:

    “…this is the same problem with many adults in the US and our education system. We do not teach logical thought.”

  416. victorian says:

    A.I.G. Borrows Another $20.9 Billion From the Fed

    – Looks like Santa has made some early stops at AIG. No Gifts for us!!!

    “American International Group has found another place to borrow billions of dollars from the government: the Federal Reserve’s commercial paper program.”

    http://dealbook.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/30/aig-borrows-another-209-billion-from-the-fed/?hp

  417. Clotpoll says:

    vic (422)-

    I found out the guy I was coaching against last week works for AIG. And not in a lower-level position.

    I wish I could’ve recorded myself. I normally never talk to anybody but my players, but I couldn’t resist.

    I’m very proud that I was able to milk it for close to 80 minutes of nonstop smack talk.

    The SOB was such a eunuch he didn’t even crack back on me. Pathetic.

  418. william says:

    421—clot—precisely

  419. Shore Guy says:

    “They need the NYS Legislature to pass it, which will be very difficult to accomplish. ”

    Gator,

    With that budget gap, I woukd not count on it being rejected. To get around any issues of only taxing out-of-state residents, I would imagine NY could create some type of rebate; pay the tax just like the folks in NJ but then get it back.

  420. victorian says:

    Clot (423) –

    “I’m very proud that I was able to milk it for close to 80 minutes of nonstop smack talk.”

    – I pity the fool! Honestly, I can understand why he wouldn’t talk back at you. If I were to hear smack from you, I wouldn’t know what to reply!!

  421. victorian says:

    BTW, I learnt an important lesson in the past two days. When the market is in a deeply oversold condition, let the rally play out before you jump back in.
    This market is definitely not for noobs. Don’t they say that in a bear market, both bulls and bears lose?

  422. alia says:

    163,
    william
    i think you are making some major assumptions there. the only thing suffering brings is suffering.

    some people find enlightenment while suffering. others find it while chopping wood and carrying water.

    not sure enlightenment is worth the suffering.

    and i find your smug attitude repulsive.

  423. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Don’t know the source of this, but I think it is priceless:

    “Today on my way to lunch I passed a homeless guy with a sign that read “Vote Obama, I need the money.” I laughed.

    Once in the restaurant my server had on a “Obama 08” tie, again I laughed as he had given away his political preference–just imagine the coincidence.

    When the bill came I decided not to tip the server and explained to him that I was exploring the Obama redistribution of wealth concept. He stood there in disbelief while I told him that I was going to redistribute his tip to someone who I deemed more in need–the homeless guy outside. The server angrily stormed from my sight.

    I went outside, gave the homeless guy $10 and told him to thank the server inside as I’ve decided he could use the money more. The homeless guy was grateful.

    At the end of my rather unscientific redistribution experiment I realized the homeless guy was grateful for the money he did not earn, but the waiter was pretty angry that I gave away the money he did earn even though the actual recipient deserved money more.

    I guess redistribution of wealth is an easier thing to swallow in concept than in practical application (ask the waiter) “

  424. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    grim, kill 429 in mod

  425. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    This is priceless!

    “Today on my way to lunch I passed a homeless guy with a sign that read “Vote O, I need the money.” I laughed.

    Once in the restaurant my server had on a “O 08” tie, again I laughed as he had given away his political preference–just imagine the coincidence.

    When the bill came I decided not to tip the server and explained to him that I was exploring the O redistribution of wealth concept. He stood there in disbelief while I told him that I was going to redistribute his tip to someone who I deemed more in need–the homeless guy outside. The server angrily stormed from my sight.

    I went outside, gave the homeless guy $10 and told him to thank the server inside as I’ve decided he could use the money more. The homeless guy was grateful.

    At the end of my rather unscientific redistribution experiment I realized the homeless guy was grateful for the money he did not earn, but the waiter was pretty angry that I gave away the money he did earn even though the actual recipient deserved money more.

    I guess redistribution of wealth is an easier thing to swallow in concept than in practical application (ask the waiter) “

  426. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [428] alia

    I have a friend who grew up dirt poor and made something of himself.

    He was wont to say “money can’t buy happiness but I would rather be rich and unhappy than poor and miserable.”

  427. Stu says:

    This $20 issue is a fantastic opportunity for the parents of the $1 kid to teach their child the value of money, but my guess is that the parents have no interest in doing so. Although the teacher didn’t uphold her original request, this does not in any way diminish the need for the parents who behaved properly to give the same speech.

    I was in junior high when the whole designer jean thing started. I was always forced to wear wranglers as they were the cheapest and the most durable. I distinctly remember the speech my father gave me when I wanted Brittanicas. He stated that if I could prove that the designer jeans were better, I could get them. Keep in mind, I never received allowance in my life. At age 13, I was an adult and was expected to work for my money. Shoveling driveways in the winter and mowing lawns was my main source of income and it was good money for a sub 16-year old. I also flipped burgers at BK for two years. I have never been unemployed since age 13. My dad also taught me how the stock market worked when I was in 6th grade and I was taught how to do my own taxes at 13. These lessons proved invaluable and I have already begun to pass on these values to my 3-year old. And anyone who says you can’t reason with a 3-year old is full of cr*p. If a young child doesn’t listen to reason, then he has not been disciplined properly.

    Someone also mentioned the need to be consistent. My mom raised seven and when we had Ryan she said never make a promise to him that you don’t keep. She said as long as you live by this rule and hold to it, he will always listen and trust you.

    I’m not sure where I’m going with all this, but I hate watching parents screw up their children. It’s kind of like pet owners who don’t buy a book before training their pets and give the pets up since they think their pet is incapable of being trained.

  428. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [398] Nicholas,

    we use a variant of that rule with our 5YO. It is amazing to watch the wheels turn as she tries to decide which is more valuable to her at that time.

  429. Shore Guy says:

    Tim “The Toolman” Taylor would be proud (from Yahoo news):

    “They need the NYS Legislature to pass it, which will be very difficult to accomplish. “

  430. Stu says:

    Nom,

    The anecdotal story is garbage. I hate these stories because they are straw man arguments. The waiter ain’t making 250K and the homeless guy isn’t getting the entire spoils of the waiter.

    Let me give you another story.

    Nom goes to a restaurant and his waiter pisses in the melted butter accompanying the lobster he ordered. Nom doesn’t know it, but everyone in the kitchen is laughing as Nom devours his dinner. Why is the restaurant staff so cruel? They’re sick of not getting any of the spoils of the most prosperous economy since the country was founded. I only hope Nom does not order the chocolate souffle for dessert.

  431. william says:

    430—wow..that was a good example

  432. william says:

    alia—i’m sorry you feel that way.

  433. Rich In NNJ says:

    Justin (240),

    MLS: 2842018
    229 CENTRAL AVE
    Taxes: $6,398.46
    Owner: FEDERAL NATL MTG ASSN FNMA

    ACT $365,000 3/12/2008 (Ownership: Private)
    PCH $355,000 4/7/2008
    PCH $339,000 4/15/2008
    W-U $339,000 4/27/2008

    ACT $295,000 9/22/2008 (Ownership: Bank)
    PCH $279,900 10/28/2008

  434. william says:

    suffering tends to be forgotten—very similar to childbirth…the pain is overwhelming for a while…but once the pain goes away, it’s forgotten, but something good comes from it….imo

  435. Outofstater says:

    Here is what works with kids: “No.” Then you stop talking.

  436. Shore Guy says:

    oops. The copy did not work. It was a story about a guy who electrified a campaign yard sign. Ended up shocking a neighbor.

  437. Shore Guy says:

    (from yahoo news)
    Boy shocked after man powers up campaign sign (AP)
    (34 mins ago)

    CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Shawn Turschak of Chapel Hill was tired of someone stealing McCain-Palin campaign signs from his yard. Turschak, with a degree in electrical engineering, hooked up a third sign to a power source for an electric pet fence Monday and also put up a surveillance camera.
    The News & Observer of Raleigh reported that a 9-year-old boy with an Obama-Biden sign grabbed the McCain-Palin sign and got a jolt on Tuesday.

    snip

  438. lisoosh says:

    Shore –

    guy wanted to stop squirrels from eating bird feed so he electrified the base of the feeder.

    Hearing a screech of pain a couple of days later he looked out to see his dog writhing in pain. Poor animal got electocuted trying to take a pi$$.

    There’s a moral in there somewhere and a lot of this thread feels like I walked into a den full of stoners out to “Save the World Dude” so that’s about the right standard for the day.

    Hope it’s just the election strain showing.

  439. lisoosh says:

    Other than that –

    renter – why do I think you live in a “top school district”?

    Outofstater – I agree. Nothing beats “no”.

    Nom – Agree with Stu, the tale reeks of straw men and frustration. I know the election is near, things are heated, but lets stick with reality please. We’re better than this.

  440. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [444] soosh,

    I had a nice rant in rejoinder, but for reasons I can’t fathom, I got moderated. Maybe the word lobster did it.

    For my part, I think straw men are useful rhetorical tools. Further, I do think that if I replicated the experiment, it would go down exactly as the writer described it. And if Stu is correct, and this waiter resents me for being able to order in his restaurant, why do I want to reward what he is about to do to the butter?

  441. william says:

    405—obviously the books that are the “accepted norm” are not working

  442. Cindy says:

    A few things tonight – Outofstater @440 – Stu @ 432 ..consistent – you bet.. “No” period works. I don’t have any fancy schmancy contracts at school either – 1 Warning – then no recess and sometimes a responsibility check sent home.

    “Never make a promise you can’t keep” AND don’t make a threat you have no intention of following through with…”Stop that or we are going home.” THEN not do it …not good – you have to leave or the trust/authority is compromised as well.

    Someone was talking about school “agendas” -No union at my district – They have no agenda I am to further -except our district adopted “Character Counts.”
    The student council does “no bullying” presentations – the principal even reads books on the subject then students sign a “no bullying” pledge. Zero tolerance district – very conservative.

    Field trips – We don’t even go into gift shops. The office needs to cover the cost of several who attend F/T. We can also turn in names each year for those who need food baskets, coats etc. from area groups and our PTC.

  443. John says:

    when the parents cut the kids off in RVC the rich girls turned tricks in their parents house 3pm to 5pm daily and the guys dealt to pay for what was previously free. But hey all looked great and had IPODS

  444. Cindy says:

    Qwerty 119 –

    “If your income is $350. a month, you are unemployed.”

    I am purposely living on a small amount so I can reduce debt/save and retire some day. The $350. isn’t cutting it anymore. I need to give myself a raise – hence – no more 403b.

  445. william says:

    234–my favorite comment of the day.

  446. Cindy says:

    When people advice you to have 6 months salary on hand in cash – they are telling the truth. I have a -0- balance on my one credit card. Pay it off every month. But throw in a computer, a water heater -oopps – it’s Christmas.

    The girls will think it is funny when I tell them they bought me a water heater and computer for their Christmas present – really! It will be a family joke for years…I had the money – I spent it …wisely…

    My goal now is to build up a personal savings account so this doesn’t happen again.

  447. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Sorry, John Rawls, not Rawles

    And here is one particularly cogent discussion of his Theory of Justice.

    “A practical implication of [Rawl’s] difference principle is that society must redistribute income up to the point where the wealth of the representative poorest individual (an abstraction) is maximized. In other words, “society” should tax and redistribute the wealth of the more advantaged up to the point where their incentives to produce more disappear.

    Rawls recognizes that by allowing at least some greater level of rewards to accrue to the skilled and motivated, the poor will be better off than they would have been with a totally equal distribution of income. He also realizes that redistribution cannot go as far as his ethical preference for equality would recommend without making everyone (including the poor) worse off. At some point, impairing individuals’ economic incentives would reduce the total wealth in society”

    So even Rawls saw that the O policy would reduce incentives (and in our society, capital).

  448. william says:

    Exxon pulled a 14.8 billion dollar profit in the last quarter…geez what a suprise

  449. william says:

    Cindy—I for one applaud you for doing what you do.Teachers are very undervalued in our society. The money may not be there, but it has to be more rewarding than being an axeman for a big corporate company at Christmastime?

  450. alia says:

    397, kettle
    ah, that would be me. :)

    431, nom
    yup

    435, stu
    yup

  451. william says:

    428—alia I simply don’t agree with you, sorry…

  452. alia says:

    455 lol
    please, you denigrate women (388) then talk about how awesome (yet forgettable) the pain of childbirth is (439)… i want you to disagree with me! please! it makes me feel even more comfortable with my first impression of you. if you say a variation on “the sleeper must awake” one more time, i’ll give you the friggin patriot primer award.

  453. Everything's Hobroken says:

    re Child raising –

    We found that things were a lot simpler once we stopped offering illusory choices to our daughter.

    If you offer your child a choice, make sure first that you are willing to accept any of the outcomes. This allows your child to begin making real decisions within the rules.

  454. sas says:

    “Pink Floyd was so right and I never got it—”Welcome to the machine”…If I would have only listened to them instead of my parents!”

    good one bloke…good one.

    SAS

  455. stan says:

    anyone have any clue what the he@@ public question #1 on the nj ballot is? just received the sample ballot and have no clue what it is for…..

  456. Stu says:

    Ballot questions don’t mean a damn thing in NJ. When the stem cell staffing bonding question was asked during the last general election, NJ overwhelmingly voted against the bond. Corzine then decided to spend an equal amount of money building the facilities on another bond even though it was now impossible to staff those facilities.

    Need I say more?

  457. yikes says:

    The operating idea is to trap as many Americans as possible in a cradle-to-grave life of debt servitude. Then, people have no choices, no motivation, no aspiration and no ability to move from one place to another. The end product will be a static, predictable workforce of compliant, glassy-eyed zombies.

    well said, Clot.

  458. victorian says:

    I was so inspired by William today, I went out and got myself a XBOX 360. I think Call of Duty will be my way of sticking it to the man!

    BTW, sweet deal on the 360 (20 Gig HDD) at FYE. 250 – 100 Mail-In Rebate = $150.

  459. Clotpoll says:

    vic (427)-

    In a market like this, rallies don’t last as long as Vi@gra (thanks again, BC). This latest two day-wonder is like the market took that time-release Ci@lis.

    The next swoon is gonna be nasty. I think it can bust under 7900 on the Dow, easy.

  460. Shore Guy says:

    Well, I thought I posted this hours ago but ended up moderated. (Must stop posting at traffic lights). Anyway, in the best of the Tim “The Toolman” Taylor tradition (from Yahoo News):

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    October 30th, 2008 at 7:26 pm
    (from yahoo news)
    Boy shocked after man powers up campaign sign (AP)
    (34 mins ago)
    CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Shawn Turschak of Chapel Hill was tired of someone stealing M-P campaign signs from his yard. Turschak, with a degree in electrical engineering, hooked up a third sign to a power source for an electric pet fence Monday and also put up a surveillance camera.
    The News & Observer of Raleigh reported that a 9-year-old boy with an O-B sign grabbed the M- sign and got a jolt on Tuesday.
    snip

  461. yikes says:

    The world’s currency markets are a keg of dynamite. The coming explosion will blow the doors off the Richter scale.

    how are you preparing for it, BC? besides the guns, gold, and canned goods?

    are the boots still on? how active are you house shopping? with deflation supposedly followed by terrible inflation, what is the plan of attack for the fiscally conservative, cash-heavy folks?

  462. Shore Guy says:

    “At some point, impairing individuals economic incentives would reduce the total wealth in society””

    The USSR and ChiComs learned this lesson. We seem to want to ignore what we tought the rest of the world for 400 years.

  463. Shore Guy says:

    Stu/Gator

    Glad to hear the evil masters of the CN empire have not ruined your week.

  464. d2b says:

    skep-
    I live in one of those districts where the parents are too involved with the kids. They have a lottery to see which Moms go on field trips. The other Moms still get to go, but they car pool behind the school bus.

    I told my wife that she was not allowed to go over to the school anymore. School should be for the children.

  465. Pat says:

    http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/10/31/business/31bailout.php
    “Irk”
    “…everyone who is underwater and has few other assets should stop paying…”

    ‘To guard against fraud, a spokesman for the housing agency said, borrowers will have to certify they did not “intentionally” default.’

  466. william says:

    alia—-you just dont get it….*sigh*

  467. Clotpoll says:

    Pat (468)-

    When principal reductions, workouts & bailouts come closer to being reality, you’d have to be nuts to keep paying your mortgage. Guess Schiff agrees:

    “Peter Schiff, the president of Euro Pacific Capital in Darien, Connecticut, who prophesied doom before it became fashionable, says he thinks just about everyone who is underwater and has few other assets should stop paying.”

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