Huh? Christie? Kicking the can already?

From Bloomberg:

Christie Seeks to Suspend N.J. Tax Rebate, Skip Pension Payment

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie proposed a $29.3 billion budget that would suspend property-tax rebates, skip the state’s $3 billion pension contribution and fire 1,300 workers next year.

The plan would reduce aid to schools by $820 million, towns by $446 million and higher education by $173 million. Christie, a Republican who took office Jan. 19, also called for a constitutional amendment that would limit annual growth in the state’s highest-in-the-nation property taxes to 2.5 percent.

“Today, we stop sweeping problems under the rug,” Christie, 47, said during his first budget address to a joint session of the Democrat-led Legislature in Trenton. “We will not hide our problems until another day. And we are certainly not increasing the tax burden we place upon our people.”

Christie pledged not to raise income, sales or corporate taxes to close a record $10.7 billion deficit in the budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. His plan, which includes $28.3 billion in state spending and $1 billion in federal aid, is 9 percent lower than the budget for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30.

Bagger said the state would save $848 million by suspending the property tax rebate program this year and then giving homeowners direct credits on their bills beginning in May 2011.

Another $50 million would come from an unspecified plan to have some government functions run by private companies. Christie last week said he may privatize some state jobs in 2011 amid rising costs for employee salaries and benefits.

New Jersey would skip its full $3 billion pension payment, under Christie’s plan. The system was underfunded by $46 billion as of 2009 because of investment declines and a failure to make full contributions, according to annual financial reports.

“Our pension system must be reformed before we can or should fund a broken, out-of-control system,” Christie said.

This entry was posted in New Jersey Real Estate, Property Taxes. Bookmark the permalink.

467 Responses to Huh? Christie? Kicking the can already?

  1. Yikes says:

    first? little falls NJ, still underwater

  2. freedy says:

    what do the unions do now?

  3. grim says:

    Celebrate?

  4. Yikes says:

    how texas wields any power whatsoever in the textbook discussion is pathetic

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ynews/20100315/ts_ynews/ynews_ts1253_3

    The nation’s public school curriculum may be in for a Texas-sized overhaul, if the Lone Star state’s influential recommendations for changes to social studies, economics and history textbooks are fully ratified later this spring. Last Friday, in a 10-to-5 vote split right down party lines, the Texas State Board of Education approved some controversial right-leaning alterations to what most students in the state—and by extension, in much of the rest of the country—will be studying as received historical and social-scientific wisdom. After a public comment period, the board will vote on final recommendations in May.

  5. marty says:

    Kicking the can by not funding the pension fund? My question is how do you fund it? Let’s get on with telling the unions that they aren’t getting what they where promised.

  6. sas says:

    “My question is how do you fund it? ”

    get back to work and fund my entitlements.
    I’m an American, I’m the best. The whole world want to be like me cause of that…the world owes me a living, and I expect no more than $2/gallon gas.

    ahh… I love fast food while I watch the March Madness.

    SAS

  7. marty says:

    fat man is on cnbc

  8. confused in NJ says:

    5.marty says:
    March 17, 2010 at 6:23 am
    Kicking the can by not funding the pension fund? My question is how do you fund it? Let’s get on with telling the unions that they aren’t getting what they where promised.

    The only way to Fund the current Public Sector Pensions & Benefits is to eliminate retirement in the Private Sector and require that they work until they die to support Public retirees. Short of that, the Public Sector need be capped at the Private Sector average.

  9. Outofstater says:

    Middlesex boro cops get 10% pay raise over three years.

    http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2010/03/middlesex_borough_cops_get_10.html

  10. Final Doom says:

    Race to the bottom goes thermobaric. Since Schumer is at the center, this should end really well:

    “Five senators including Charles Schumer of New York and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina introduced legislation yesterday to make it easier for the U.S. to declare currency misalignments and take corrective action. Even if the bill stalls, it may have “ripple effects” that lead the Treasury Department to declare China a currency manipulator, William Reinsch, president of the National Foreign Trade Council, said.

    Obama’s goal of doubling U.S. exports in five years depends on his ability to get China to raise the value of its currency, said Sherrod Brown, an Ohio Democrat and co-author of the legislation. China’s intervention in currency markets to keep the value of the yuan, or renminbi, at a set value acts as a subsidy to exports and tax on imports, Brown said at a news conference yesterday.

    Senator Debbie Stabenow, a Michigan Democrat, and Sam Brownback, a Kansas Republican, are also supporting the legislation. Graham is a Republican and Schumer is a Democrat.

    The senators said the U.S. recession could boost the political prospects for the legislation, which Schumer has proposed in various forms since 2003. Schumer said the Senate proposal will be attached “very soon” as an amendment to “must-pass legislation.”

    “The only way we will change them is by forcing them to change,” Schumer said.”

    http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2010/03/pressure-increasing-on-china-to-revalue.html

  11. Final Doom says:

    I hate St. Patrick’s Day.

  12. Shore Guy says:

    So, it looks like Christie is indeed going after interest arbitration, which currently relies heavily (nearly exclusively?) on average settlements in the area, thus just about guaranteeing that no settlement is “below average” and thus pushing the average ever upwards.

  13. Shore Guy says:

    “I hate St. Patrick’s Day.”

    That is coming up soon, isn’t it?

  14. njescapee says:

    Patrick’s Day = Amateur Day

  15. Mr Hyde says:

    Sea 394 (from yesterday)

    Cut out the hyperbole. My observations are not based on Mish or anyone else. The only one worshiping at an alter here is yourself. My original call was deflation and i adjusted my outlook as conditions changed to simultaneous inflationary and deflationary effects in different sectors of the overall economy. I have repeated my outlook and the reasons behind it multiple times. We have also debated the issue between us multiple times.

    You seem stuck on pure inflation. Thats a neat trick when we have trillions in debt evaporating on an annual basis so far and yet printing and QE have created 1-2 trillion at best. Housing values alone have seen 2-3 trillion wiped out and the 2.8 trillion in heloc debt is probably worth 50% of that at best in terms of mark-to-market. Thats just the tip of the iceberg.

    Pure deflation or pure inflation are both wrong in the current situation.

    We disagree, enough said.

  16. NJGator says:

    Shore 13 – Already? I’ll be on the 1:47 Coast Line train to the Dublin House to meet my Monmouth County friends.

    While I am abandoning Lil Gator and Stu for the night, I have left them some Seitan and Guinness Stew so they can observe the day in proper Jewish vegetarian style..

  17. make money says:

    Check out our Donut boy. Shutting down a College. I love it.

    N.J. Governor Wants to Merge Thomas Edison Into Rutgers

    New Jersey’s governor on Tuesday proposed an austere budget for higher education (and most everything else), recommending a cut of about 15 percent in operating funds and a reduction of nearly 5 percent in financial aid for students. But the most stunning aspect of the governor’s 2011 budget plan for public college officials was its proposal (see page 33) to strip Thomas Edison State College of $5.6 million in state funds and merge the online education institution into Rutgers University. The governor’s budget plan bills the merger as a logical way to bring Rutgers’s brand of classroom-based learning to Trenton, which is home to Thomas Edison, while “leveraging the two institutions’ distance learning programming.” Under the merger, Rutgers would also take over the State Museum and Library that Thomas Edison now oversees, for a total savings of $8.4 million. Public college officials, though, note that Trenton already has a classroom-based public institution, the College of New Jersey, and that enormous, research-oriented Rutgers would make an unlikely and discordant overseer of Thomas Edison’s unusual brand of personalized education for adult students and overseas military personnel. Thomas Edison officials reportedly did not learn about the proposed merger until early Tuesday, and could not be reached for comment Tuesday night.

  18. #11 – I hate St. Patrick’s Day.

    As a man whose grandparents came from County Cork, I absolutely agree.
    I’ve got Irish blood the other 364 days a year, and the annoying moody temperament that goes with it. I’m not sure if celebrating that is a good thing.

  19. Mr Hyde says:

    Nom, Moose

    Doesnt the following make the “Deemed passed” shenanigans that they are playing with the healthcare bill, illegal/unconstitiutional???

    US Constitution, Article 1, Section 7:

    All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.

    Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.

  20. Final Doom says:

    “This is getting plain moronic. First, in July 2008 we were hearing all sorts of idiocy, spewed by Paulson about some loaded bazooka that the Treasury had but would never use. Well, the Treasury not only ended up having to use it but it turned out to be the biggest dud in the history of capitalism, Paulson’ tendentious blatherings in his publicistic memoir notwithstanding. And now we have the Greeks using precisely the same line. Today in an interview before CNBC, Greek Finance Minister G-Pap II (not to be confused with G-Pap JR, the Prime Minister, or G-Pap 0, the guy who started it all) said he was looking to the EU to put a “loaded gun on the table to defend Greece’s financial markets.” We were expecting a laugh, a cackle, a snicker, or some indication the man was joking. We all recall that the system started collapsing about a month after the famous Paulson loaded weapon reference. We expect the same this time.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/paulsons-bazooka-reemerges-greek-finance-minister-wants-eu-put-loaded-gun-table-protect-him-

  21. Final Doom says:

    hyde (15)-

    My response (from the last thread) to Sean, who sees efforts to inflate as equal to inflation:

    “I am neither an isolationist (I went to history class the day Smoot-Hawley was the topic) nor an inflationist (most of the desperate gubmint programs to reinflate some corpse of a bubble are failing).

    My greatest fear is that after this bout of deflationary debt destruction- which I believe will last much longer than 2012- we will be left with nothing but a vast bomb crater of economic destruction. In a way, any signs of real inflation (you know, the monetary kind) might be welcome at that point.

    I don’t need to read Mish in order to think or oserve what’s around me. I also don’t subscribe to an inaccurate definition of inflation. Just because your favorite box of cereal costs more this week doesn’t mean we’re at the cusp of a second Weimar.”

  22. Mr Hyde says:

    Doom 23

    “I am neither an isolationist (I went to history class the day Smoot-Hawley was the topic) nor an inflationist (most of the desperate gubmint programs to reinflate some corpse of a bubble are failing).

    I second your sentiment.

  23. Juice Box says:

    Hyde – lol no offense meant, I just don’t want people crediting you for the inflation call when you were wrong. Nothing wrong with adjusting your call, we all do it. So far I haven’t adjusted my call from inflation to anything else. Am I wrong, well if you look at the CPI-U I was wrong for a short period of time but then again, debt deflation in some peoples minds equals what price deflation in some alternate universe. So far not really the case. Who knew anyway? We are all arm chair economists after all, so all we can do is part time research into the obscure.

    http://inflationdata.com/inflation/images/charts/Annual_Inflation/annual_inflation_chart.htm

    FYI – the Mish comment was not far off, you and Clot may not like it but you were parroting him quite well for a period of time, even if you did not read his stuff or mean to parrot him. I do also read Mish and he has yet to admit he was wrong on deflation and he now claims he was back in the markets March 09. He is now lying to his clients and I get to enjoy calling him and his readers fools. If you email Mish that he will probably call homeland security since he is such a nutcase.

    Either way Bernake was correct and we were all wrong. He shut down deflation and restarted inflation. Quite a trick considering the mess.

    I would say we are all Japanese now, and we are due for inflation and endless gov stimulus programs etc. Would you agree on that comment Hyde?

  24. Shore Guy says:

    Ahhh, I just heard, it is today. Well, I won’t be wearing green, but hope that tohse of you who do enjoy the day.

  25. Shore Guy says:

    Regarding the conversation about inflation vs. deflation, someone once wisely observed:

    Just because you are not paranoid does not mean they are not out to get you.

    Looking at the events of recent months, I am persuaded that there is a good chance that we may face a devaluation. Why? Well, doing so will cut the debtors’ debts and the savers’ savings, thus, once again, punishing the prudent. This has been the overarching theme of government policy of late, so any policy that continues this trend seems more likely to prevail than one that does the reverse.

  26. chicagofinance says:

    7.marty says:
    March 17, 2010 at 6:39 am
    fat man is on cnbc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9iB9sXS88Q

  27. chicagofinance says:

    Gates: Maybe I will stumble in there……

    16.NJGator says:
    March 17, 2010 at 7:31 am
    Shore 13 – Already? I’ll be on the 1:47 Coast Line train to the Dublin House to meet my Monmouth County friends.

    While I am abandoning Lil Gator and Stu for the night, I have left them some Seitan and Guinness Stew so they can observe the day in proper Jewish vegetarian style..

  28. chicagofinance says:

    Mish, zero hedge, Glenn Beck….what is the fcuking difference?

    25.Juice Box says:
    March 17, 2010 at 7:59 am
    FYI – the Mish comment was not far off, you and Clot may not like it but you were parroting him quite well for a period of time, even if you did not read his stuff or mean to parrot him.

  29. Shore Guy says:

    Gator,

    How is the mom of the preemie doing? How about the HELOCED couple (from Red Bank?)

  30. NJGator says:

    Chifi – That would be cool. I think we’ll be there from around 3:30 -7. This is a big tradition for my Middletown area friends (and of course none of them are Irish). I’m only joining the zoo this year because a friend of ours is in from Texas and I haven’t seen her in a year and a half.

  31. Anon E. Moose says:

    Hyde[20];

    Clinton v. City of New York held that the line item veto was unconstitutional because, in order to be a law, the name text must be approved by both houses of congress and signed by the president. As applied to that case, the bill signed by the president, lacking the item he line-item vetoed, was not the same bill that passed the congress.

    There are other forces in play. The “enrolled bill doctrine” is a separation of powers tenet that says that the court will not look behind the certification of either house that a bill was passed.

    I think that the whole “deem” thing is a red herring anyway. If a majority of the House votes to “deem” a bill passed, then it passes, both as a practical matter and for the millstone that will hang around their necks come November. Its a distinction without a difference, practically and politically.

    The upshot is that the House would have passed the Senate version of the bill which would be rushed by armored car to the President, rousting him from his 3AM slumber to sign the measure with bleary eyes — Congress has yet to act on any aspect of ObamaCare without cover of darkness; they won’t take any chances by waiting for state media cameras or setting up a Rose Garden signing ceremony on this one.

  32. NJGator says:

    Shore – These are the folks I will be with at the Dublin House. You should stop by :)

    Baby G is doing fantastic and will be a year old in May. She just got her last RSV shot and might be able to start going out and about in mid-May.

    As for our HELOC friends, they just got back from a trip to Disney. They’re now talking about eliminating cable TV and canceling their daughter’s birthday party. Maybe they got turned down for another refi?

  33. Anon E. Moose says:

    name => same

  34. stu says:

    Revelations (answer to your question from previous thread):

    How Much Will Mortgage Rates Rise When Fed Ends Support?

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/How-Much-Will-Mortgage-Rates-cnbc-157232559.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=1&asset=&ccode=

  35. Final Doom says:

    chi (30)-

    Glenn Beck is a retard and a bad actor.

    Zero Hedge is smart people who are inside (or, can get inside) the rotten core of finance & banking. What gets posted there is shocking, and that’s because we live in shocking times.

    Mish is strident (at the very least), but his observations are direct and based on common sense. Nobody needs to be a genius to understand this stuff.

  36. Final Doom says:

    BTW, I still like Mike Morgan, too.

    Tough that the heart attack seems to have killed his desire to work.

  37. NJGator says:

    Clot 37 – If my father heard you say that, he’d call you a liberal!

  38. Final Doom says:

    gator (39)-

    That is a testament to how much exposure to MSM has rendered us collectively stupid.

    I think the labels we are taught to pin on each other make us easy to control by TPTB.

  39. NJGator says:

    Clot 40 – I directly attribute that solely to his exposure to the New York Post.

  40. Final Doom says:

    The only distinction that matters is the one between people who think and those whose brains are congelaed mayonnaise.

  41. Final Doom says:

    Gator (41)-

    One is better off exposed to chunks of plutonium.

  42. Final Doom says:

    Sorry for the redundancy. By definition, all mayonnaise is congealed.

  43. Mr Hyde says:

    Sean,

    No I did indeed point to Mish on occasion. However the purpose was to illustrate an argument. He was not the basis for my position.

    In the spirit of constructive debate, The core issue between us is that we disagree on how to define deflation/inflation. I am happy to “agree to disagree” on the matter.

    in my opinion when debt is monetized the destruction of debt is no different then the destruction of cash. once again i know we disagree on this point and i suggest we leave it at “agree to disagree”.

    I also note that i suggested we would see deflation followed by inflation almost 2 years ago in 2008 and made straight deflation calls in 2007 on this blog


    kettle1 says:
    November 26, 2008 at 12:08 pm

    …Listen to this program. The guest describes exactly what i have said we will see. Deflation followed by a rapid change to inflation.

    kettle1 says:
    August 13, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    BC bob, make, et al

    The trillions are adding up, 2 trillion here, 2 trillion there, and pretty soon we are talking real money.

    Can the Fed pump out enough money to match the destroyed wealth plus an additional sum in order to inflate our debts downward without sparking runaway inflation?

  44. NJGator says:

    Just submitted my March Madness bracket. Probably $5 thrown out the window, but I justify it as it not being my money anyway. I guarantee you that the NJT conductor will not upcharge my $135 monthly ticket to Glen Ridge when I ride all the way down to Red Bank today.

  45. PGC says:

    As I think the only “off the boat” here, I can say that:

    I hate this day and all the plastics walking up 5th Ave. I loved the year I looked out of my office at St Patricks cathedral and watched as the snow beat down and frooze the gobsh1tes. March 17th in NYC is second only to that travesty in Hoboken on the first Saturday when it turns into a Lampoon Frat House.

    Póg mo thóin ya feeckers!
    /rant

  46. borat obama says:

    Last

  47. Juice Box says:

    Hyde, answer my question please are we turning Japanese?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEmJ-VWPDM4

  48. veto that says:

    “Big Shift”: U.S. Economy Poised for Jobs Growth, John Challenger Says

    Mar 17, 2010

    The economic rebound has been missing one key ingredient so far: jobs growth.
    But that may be about to change.

    “The economy is poised to start seeing unemployment begin to drop,” says John Challenger, CEO of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

    “Employers who’ve been very cautious [will] begin to start turning the temp workers they are hiring into permanent people,” Challenger says, predicting positive growth in payrolls will emerge by the second half of 2010.

    The turn in employment can’t come fast enough for the 8.4 million Americans who’ve lost jobs since December 2007, but Challenger cited the following metrics for his optimistic outlook:

    — Temporary jobs have been rising steadily since September and topped 48,000 in February. Temp jobs are typically a leading indicator of overall job growth and this trend is one reason the Fed declared “the labor market is stabilizing,” in Tuesday’s policy statement.
    — Layoff announcements have decreased sharply in the past five months and hit their lowest levels in three years in February, according to Challenger, Gray & Christmas’ own data. “There’s been a big shift in layoffs” the CEO says.
    — The manufacturing sector is starting to see signs of an upturn. The ISM’s manufacturing survey has risen for seven-straight months and the manufacturing sector had positive growth (albeit very modest) in the February employment report.
    “Companies are very thinly staffed,” Challenger says. ” As demand starts to grow – at some point they’ll become more confident. We’re seeing signs of that.”

    Challenger dismissed the notion we’ve entered an era where elevated unemployment is the “new normal.” Not only will job growth return sooner than most observers expect, the CEO predicts high-paying jobs for skilled workers will be created in growth industries such as health care and biotech, energy and alternative energy, security and by companies able to tap into the explosive growth in emerging markets.

  49. NJGator says:

    PGC – I’d say that Christmas Season near Radio City is pretty up there as well. Maybe the pain is not as acute as on St Patty’s Day – but the sheer duration of it has to count for something.

  50. Juice Box says:

    Going be at the Parade this afternoon, if you are watching TV I will be the good looking guy pushing the Green stroller up 5th avenue.

  51. Mr Hyde says:

    Sean,

    Sorry, didnt mean to ignore your question.

    I would say we are all Japanese now, and we are due for inflation and endless gov stimulus programs etc. Would you agree on that comment Hyde?

    I agree that we are turning japanese in terms of endless government stimulus. I stand by my personal opinion that net deflationary forces are currently greater then net inflationary forces. As deflation forces wind down, i think we will transition into a nasty bout of net inflation.

    I disagree with your overall point of view but am not suggesting your point of view is anymore valid then my own.

  52. Mr Hyde says:

    Sean,

    cant access youtube from my current location

  53. Mr Hyde says:

    Correction

    I disagree with your overall point of view but am not suggesting your point of view is anymore valid then my own.

    I disagree with your overall point of view but am not suggesting my point of view is anymore valid then your own.

  54. PGC says:

    #44 Clot

    Scare bleu, is that Robuchon having a heart attack.

    Mayonaise is an emulsion that never congeals. Gelatin congeals.

  55. Yikes says:

    anyone notice how the republicans have been silent on the Texas/textbook story?

    they have to wait for Hannity/Beck/Rush to weigh in … so they can regurgitate those thoughts

  56. NJGator says:

    Posted on our Yahoo Watercooler Group by the husband of one of our BOE members. Montclair may go to war with Trenton over unfunded state mandates. This should be interesting.

    Also our 60 teach layoff scenario was based on a 15% reduction in state aid. If the state aid reduction is closer to 50%, many more will have to go. If Lil Gator’s Kindergarten class is going to have 40 students, maybe we should just fence in the yard and leave him out there with some graham crackers, juice boxes and level books and the dog to watch him. It should be equivalent to the amount of education and supervision that he will get in the public schools.

    Christie’s Budget, the School Budget, and Local Taxes

    So it turns out that Christie’s proposal of a 5% cut in state aid meant 5% of the total school budget, not 5% of current state aid. For Montclair that means (approximately) a loss of $5-6 Million.

    For starters, even an austerity budget won’t take the budget down $5M, so brace for another round of property tax hikes.

    So here’s an interesting possibility: The state imposes all sorts of unfunded mandates on the District. (State testing is one expensive example.) What if the District took a stand and said it had no obligation to fulfill any state mandate that isn’t fully funded? What if we just said NO and challenged Trenton to sue us? I’m not saying that we should cut every mandated program, just that we, because we’re footing the bill, should be free to choose what’s important to us and what can be cut. Montclair being Montclair, with our history of pride in our public education system, can be trusted to make the right decisions about what is core, what is desirable, and what (in hard times) is a luxury. We don’t need Trenton making those decisions for us and then forcing us to pay for them.

    It’s time to push back.

  57. Mr Hyde says:

    Gator

    Probably more effective.

    If Lil Gator’s Kindergarten class is going to have 40 students, maybe we should just fence in the yard and leave him out there with some graham crackers, juice boxes and level books and the dog to watch him. It should be equivalent to the amount of education and supervision that he will get in the public schools.

  58. jamil van jones says:

    57 Yikes: What’s there to comment? 1/6th of the US economy is about to be nationalized by unconstitutional thuggery and you worry about textbooks?

    Current media-democract-education complex is about as far left as possible Bill Ayers, who was the head of local terror cell responsible for killing cops, judges and others, is now a big time education honcho, in charge of making US education, and textbooks, to be in line with his ideology. It is about time that some pro-american aspects are included in the curriculum as well, not just far left talking points.

  59. jamil van jones says:

    33 Anon: “Clinton v. City of New York held that the line item veto was unconstitutional because, in order to be a law, the name text must be approved by both houses of congress and signed by the president.”

    I’m sure Shore joins me for calling criminal prosecution and disbarment of any gov lawyer for wrote memos supporting this /sarc.

  60. sas says:

    “I think the labels we are taught to pin on each other make us easy to control by TPTB”

    yup. and it all starts not in the govt run “class”rooms.

    Economic mobility? ha, you can forget about it.

    time to make the donuts.
    SAS

  61. sas says:

    “up. and it all starts not in the govt run “class”rooms.”

    opps. that should read “in”.

    I’ve had way too much 2-chloro-4-(ethylamine)-6-(isopropylamine)-s-triazine from my local municipality drinking water supply.

    SAS

  62. TPFHAPGC says:

    #403 Stu (prev thread)

    “I don’t often agree with plg, but using Glen Ridge and Montclair as an example”

    I think I have to change my sign on. I am not plg and as our political views are similar it would make sense for one of us to move. I would take the prince approach and go for a symbol, but I don’t know the ascii code for a middle finger.

    For a temporary solution I will go with The poster formally known as PGC “TPFKAPHC” while I think of something good. It might take a while.

  63. Shore Guy says:

    Has anyone in Fargo, ND yet figured out that they have built too close to the river and that its banks need to be wider? Every year there seems this mad rush to sandbag the levees and save the town. Maybe if they didn’t leave structures where the shouldn’t be they would save themselves all this trouble every spring.

  64. NJGator says:

    Shore 67 – Can you also please send that message to the folks in Little Falls and Wayne? Why do we bail these people out over and over again?

  65. Juice Box says:

    State tesing is expensive?

    Sure it is lol…..

    Just looked it up the peoples republic of Montclair has 1,000 teachers and 6,562 students. Seems their 100 million dollar budget is gonna get whacked. Call me crazy but they could consolidate with with Verona, West Orange, and Glen Ridge and save a few bucks on administrators and facilities?

  66. Nicholas says:

    One teacher for every 6.5 students? Sound like you could take a 50% haircut and still have a quality education. Need to cut out the fraud, waste, and abuse.

  67. skep-tic says:

    #25

    “Either way Bernake was correct and we were all wrong. He shut down deflation and restarted inflation. Quite a trick considering the mess.

    I would say we are all Japanese now, and we are due for inflation and endless gov stimulus programs etc.”

    Bingo

  68. Mr Hyde says:

    ….During the last week of December 2001, the newly appointed President Saá defaulted on nearly US$93-billion of Argentine debt. However, Saá’s reign was short lived, as he resigned only seven days into his term. In January 2002, the government decided to abandon the law of convertibility and set the official exchange rate at 1 to 1.4. The government also forcibly converted all dollar-dominated accounts into pesos. Months later, when the exchange rate was decided by the market the peso devalued all the way to a rate of 1 to 4.

    The immediate effects were devastating for citizens and businesses. Due to the corralito and devaluation of the peso, many depositors lost most of their life savings. Poverty in Gran Buenos Aires reached at rate of 50%, while unemployment rose to 30% and higher. The desperation was aptly portrayed in August 2002, when a truck transporting live cattle had overturned on a highway outside of Rosario. Within hours, every ounce of flesh was stripped from the 22 cows by a mob of local residents……

  69. Shore Guy says:

    People who build in well-known flood areas get no sympathy from me. There are some places people just should not build.

    For folks who are in areas that get smacked by a flood every now and then, I would give them one shot at National Flood Insurance — one gets just one payout, which they would do well to use to relocate. After getting the one payout, no more.

  70. Mr Hyde says:

    Sean, Nicholas

    How much does Montclair spend on social engineering that could easily be cut from the budget. I would imagine its a non-trivial amount

  71. NJGator says:

    Juice/Nicholas – Those numbers are not right. The average class size in Montclair public schools is about 25.

    It’s also possible that those numbers might include teacher aides. Many of those aides are assigned to work one on one with a special education student. General classroom aides have long since been cut to part-time status and no longer receive benefits.

  72. Shore Guy says:

    Via CBS, it seems people are voting with their feet in Det.

    “Mar. 17, 2010

    DETROIT (AP) – Detroit Public Schools are considering closing 45 schools in the next five years because students are leaving the district.

    The district’s emergency financial manager Robert Bobb on Wednesday plans to release the possible closing dates. His $1 billion plan calls for closing the schools between 2010-2015, renovating some and consolidating others.

    The district projects Detroit’s full-time, pre-kindergarten through 12th grade enrollment will fall from nearly 88,000 to under 57,000 in five years.

    Detroit also closed 35 buildings about three years ago. “

  73. Shore Guy says:

    Gator,

    I bet it also includes, curriculum supervisors, counselors, etc.

  74. Mr Hyde says:

    Is obamacare going the way of REALID?

    states are passing laws that forbid the core tenets of obamacare.

    http://www.kansascity.com/2010/03/16/1817776/missouri-house-sends-to-senate.html

  75. Shore Guy says:

    Replacing interscholastic sports with intramural sports would also reduce costs, while making athletic opportunities available to more students.

  76. willwork4beer says:

    Shore – from yesterday’s thread:

    394. Shore Guy says:
    March 16, 2010 at 10:37 pm

    ” Complete with traditional goat”

    I don’t know that I want to know what this means but feel compelled to ask.

    Relax, its nothing weird or off-color.

    Bock beer labels tradititonally feature a picture of a billy goat because bock means goat in German.

    How this style of strong lager became known as bock is a bit murkier. Some say it is a corruption of Einbeck, the town where it was first brewed. Some say it is because bocks were traditonally brewed during the astrological period of Capricorn and lagered away for consumption during Lent.

    In any case, bocks are making a comeback. Enjoy!

  77. NJGator says:

    Juice 69 – re testing costs. I suppose if we back out of standardized testing, the town can then stop spending all of the money they have been allocating to narrowing the “achievement gap”.

  78. Final Doom says:

    PGC (56)-

    Open a jar of Hellman’s, and tell me that’s not congealed.

    Robuchon’s mayo is an emulsion. Hellman’s is an industrial product.

  79. sas says:

    “Fargo, ND”

    your talking about a town were cow tipping and tying a knot/lasso around bull’s testicles and riding upon its back is sport.

    enough said.

    SAS

  80. Painhrtz says:

    SAS so your saying it is like Sussex county?

  81. Juice Box says:

    Gator the Montclair Education Association (MEA) claims 1,034 members in the Union.

    If the classroom size is 25 students per teacher they have less than 300 teachers and allot of what it seems will be dead ducks.

    http://meanj.org/

  82. Shore Guy says:

    Gator,

    There come a time where students or their parents have to take control of their own education and focus on their own achievement. The more we seem to do to help folks from backgrounds where there has been low academic achievement, the less folks seem to take personal responsibility for achieving.

    I have seen disruptive kids who do not care about learning and who are violent, to teachers and other students, who are, essentially, deemed “misunderstood” and some folks want the little “darlings” coddled.

    By middle school, kids can learn in very large classrooms as long as everyone is focused on learning.

  83. Final Doom says:

    skep (71)-

    No inflation without a credit extension apparatus to fan the flames.

    Without extension of credit, all the money just sits there. No velocity, no fractional reserve banking, nothing…other than the constant of debt destruction.

    Attempts to start inflation do not equal inflation.

    Tilt.

  84. Shore Guy says:

    “tying a knot/lasso around bull’s testicles”

    Ever seen a modern farm castration via, essentially, rubber band?

  85. Final Doom says:

    shore (79)-

    All sports that can should be cut and shunted to independent club teams. Any varsity sports that schools keep should be 100% funded by fees on players.

    I say this as a sports nut.

  86. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Let the games begin….

    Riots erupt across Jerusalem as Hamas leader calls for renewed ‘intifada’

    JERUSALEM (AFP) – Hundreds of Palestinians clashed with Israeli security forces across east Jerusalem on Tuesday in the worst rioting in years, as a senior Hamas leader called for a new “intifada” or uprising.

    As the unrest rocked Jerusalem, US Middle East envoy George Mitchell delayed a visit to the region amid the worst diplomatic spat in decades between Israel and key ally the United States, which was struggling to revive peace talks.

    Police fired rubber bullets, stun grenades and tear gas at Palestinian protesters who hurled stones and set up barricades of dumpsters and burning tyres in several neighbourhoods.

    Twenty-one injured Palestinians were hospitalised and dozens more were treated on the spot, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society said.
    http://rawstory.com/2010/03/riots-erupt-jerusalem-hamas-leader-calls-intifada/

  87. Shore Guy says:

    The path from bull to steer is not a pretty one.

  88. dan says:

    Juice,

    That might included retirees.

  89. skep-tic says:

    Clot– credit will be extended. the economy is improving and money is cheap. the problems are with the institutions but that gives oppportunities for new entrants to the credit markets.

  90. Final Doom says:

    Sports are a luxury. I will not buy that they are necessary when so many people who pass through our school systems end up fat and sick anyway.

    Same goes for music and art. Millions of kids are exposed to both and choose to end up culturally illiterate anyway.

    Reading, writing, math…maybe some science. As for what a kid makes of it, sink or swim.

    It’s about time we confront the fact that in our new banana republic, 98% of the population will never rise above the level of human donkey.

  91. Final Doom says:

    skep (94)-

    Whatever you are smoking recently must be powerful. Please get my address from Grim and send me some of it.

  92. Anon E. Moose says:

    68.NJGator says:
    March 17, 2010 at 9:41 am
    Shore 67 – Can you also please send that message to the folks in Little Falls and Wayne? Why do we bail these people out over and over again?

    Its because the gov’t-run flood insurance folks can’t figure out how to write an insurance contract. If your car is totalled in an accident, the insurance company pays you for your loss and they own what’s left.

    It should work the same for flood insurance. Sure, we’ll give you the money to make you whole – but then the insurer (read: taxpayer) should own the property – and can be certain they won’t have to bail out the same history-challenged folks again next spring.

    Anecdote: I hit a raised sewer cover once that cracked my oil pan and motor mounts. Immediately after the low oil pressure light came on, and I shut the engine and coasted to a stop at the bottom of the hill (memo to Toyota drivers – this will also work with a runaway engine). Geico decided to total the car, leaving them with a salvageable engine, trans, pristine body parts, interior. I’m firmly convinced they made money by totalling it. I liked the car, and had I known they were going to total it, I would have let the engine run until it seized. I hadn’t even planned on filing an insurance claim but Geico automatically opened a claim when I called for roadside assistance.

  93. yo'me says:

    Yes, we do still make things in America
    U.S. factories keep churning out goods, but jobs disappear by the millions

    Yet even as countless U.S. companies have moved production to other countries, American factories continue to churn out hundreds of billions of dollars worth of goods annually — everything from Ford trucks and Boeing airplanes to Gordon & Smith surfboards and Viking appliances. U.S. plants also still produce, assemble or manufacture tons of fertilizers, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, computer chip components and specialized industrial machine parts.

    “There’s been a loss of manufacturing jobs, but that’s not the same as a loss of manufacturing,” said Ken Mayland, an economist with ClearView Economics who works with several manufacturing trade associations.

    The U.S. manufacturing sector gradually has been transformed to focus primarily on sophisticated items that require fewer skilled workers to produce but create far greater value than the T-shirts, tennis balls and other consumer products that are mainly made overseas. Some U.S. factories also have been able to continue producing lower cost items, such as housecleaners or toothpaste, using highly automated machinery and few people.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/35769753/ns/business-us_business/

  94. Juice Box says:

    If you read the MEAs web site they are claiming 600 teachers in Montclair rest are other staff.

    6562 students / 600 teachers means one for every 11 students, if the classroom size average is 25 then there are 300 teachers doing something else in the district.

  95. safeashouses says:

    #86 Juice,

    The NJEA years ago to stop another union from muscling in on its territory opened its membership to just about anyone working in a school, including janitors, cafeteria workers, and hall monitors.

  96. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “It’s only a matter of time before the American people take to the streets particularly when they realize the full extent of cash strapped America’s indebtedness as well as the financial backlash of Wall Street’s ponzi scheme of offshore derivatives which has also brought Greece to its knees. We are talking trillions of dollars here. Meanwhile the U.S. Defense budget for 2011 will go up 7.1% .

    A bill entitled the National Emergency Centers Establishment Act (HR 645) was introduced in the US Congress in January. It calls for the establishment of six national emergency centers in major regions in the US to be located on existing military installations.

    Once a person is arrested and interned in a FEMA camp located on a military base, that person would in all likelihood, under a national emergency, fall under the de facto jurisdiction of the Military: civilian justice and law enforcement including habeas corpus would no longer apply.”
    http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h111-645

    Now the strategy should be to enact as much austerity as possible to drive the useless eaters to riot. Then Homeland Security will take care of them and the rest of the country can go on being prosperous.

    Economic triage. Dump the bottom 25% and move on with the other 75%.

  97. Shore Guy says:

    Clot,

    I agree. And, I owe my college education to football.

    High school sports cost huge sums, and much of that funding is hidden in health, transportation, and other budgets.

    Also, as someone who LIVED sports in HS and college (I have bith a state championship ring and a bowl ring) and who has kept close watch since then, interscholastic sports programs very often breed a toxic environment that emphasizes the development of behaviors and attitudes that are the exact opposite of those we wated to develop by introducing sports in the first place.

    One can get all the educational benefits from a good intramural program, while avoiding the costs and negative aspects of interscholastic sports.

  98. Final Doom says:

    shore (92)-

    Ask Skep. Seems like he had this done to him a couple of weeks ago.

    “The path from bull to steer is not a pretty one.”

  99. Yikes says:

    plg says:
    March 16, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    Christie is repealing a tax on people making over 400K per year while he is cutting funding to colleges, children, the elderly and the middle class and poor. This makes no sense.

    no horse in this race (im in pa, thank goodness), but is that really true? esp the part about repealing tax on 400k+?

  100. skep-tic says:

    I really don’t see how an objective observer could deny that the economy is improving. You can pick your measure– they are all better. Yes, there is festering rot underneath it all, but armagheddon has been pushed off to some uncertain date in the future. it is senseless to try to live your life thinking “today is the day it all goes down.” It’s like people who hid in bunkers during the 1960s. Look at what is happening right now. Things are getting steadily better.

  101. Final Doom says:

    skep (94)-

    Then why did FedCo say yesterday that we are looking at ZIRP from now until the end of recorded time?

    “Clot– credit will be extended. the economy is improving and money is cheap.”

  102. Final Doom says:

    skep (94)-

    I don’t think loan sharks can cover all the action after every mid-tier bank in the US fails.

    “the problems are with the institutions but that gives oppportunities for new entrants to the credit markets.”

  103. Shore Guy says:

    ” repealing a tax on people making over 400K per year”

    You mean repealing the EXTRA tax on them. They are still going to pay taxes at the usual rate..

    Flat taxes are the way to go. Well, flat tax combined with a consumption tax, perhaps.

  104. Libtard says:

    JuiceBox(99):
    “6562 students / 600 teachers means one for every 11 students, if the classroom size average is 25 then there are 300 teachers doing something else in the district.”

    I’m guessing it’s our well regarded special education program that is causing larger class sizes in the ‘non-special’ classrooms. Lot’s of families move to Montclair to take advantage of our special ed facilities. Unfortunately, Montclair has done nothing to stop this impact to the school budget.

  105. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Skep,

    Sell me your gold and food rations?

  106. Painhrtz says:

    Played club hockey my whole life, since we didn’t have a sholastic hockey team. My single mom would have done the same for baseball and football. Having taxpayers foot the bill for something the parents would do for their kids on their own is ridiculous.

    clot human donkey I like that, unfortunately for the rest of us they will not be sterile like a jacka$$

  107. make money says:

    Windy city lack wind under the sails of an RE recovery.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/16/chicago-foreclosure-repor_n_501086.html

  108. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    Clot

    Chi gets all bent out of shape at ZeroHedge, Mish Etc because he knows that the collapse is inevitable and he and his ilk will be out of a job.

    Of course he’ll be able to put his considerable math skills to work charting the trajectory of ordinances during the upcoming revolution so it won’t be all bad for him.

  109. Libtard says:

    Does anyone know an ice hockey goalie who wants to suit up for a rec. league in the Fall?

  110. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Tehran aiding al Qaeda links, Petraeus says

    “Iran is assisting al Qaeda by facilitating links between senior terrorist leaders and affiliate groups, the commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East told Congress on Tuesday.

    Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the U.S. Central Command, also said Iran’s nuclear program is facing problems, and as a result, Tehran is not expected to emerge with a nuclear weapon this year.”

    Where have we heard this before? Anyone gonna make an oil trade on this disaster?
    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/mar/17/tehran-aiding-al-qaeda-links-petraeus-says/

  111. Painhrtz says:

    you know the banking industry would have operated much better if there was threat of violence like Vito down the street.

    I don’t think any of the underwater debt slaves would be in their predicament if the threat of lost appendages were real for default. Remove moral hazard and you have no morals.

  112. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Pain 84 Thems fighten words.
    Just kidding so true.

  113. skep-tic says:

    In Italy, the mafia does much of the small business lending. Where there is a demand for credit, it will be supplied.

  114. Final Doom says:

    HE (113)-

    I don’t want to put words in chi’s mouth. I just don’t think he’s ready to sling bricks at his own profession yet.

    As for me, the day I realized my own industry is a giant sham was the day I started feeling better about it and doing a better job for my clients.

    Had I not come to that point, I’d have BK/FK’d 12-18 months ago.

  115. Happy Daze says:

    9 Outofstater

    Hoboken police have a Memorandum of Understanding which was negotiated by the state monitor who is currently managing town finances,
    agreed to a total 12.4% raise, which is retroactive to Jan 1 2008.
    If the council votes it down (voting apparently is tonight) I hear that arbitration will be next.

    http://www.hobokenrevolt.com/forum/topics/council-to-vote-on-police

  116. Mr Hyde says:

    Skeptic

    it is senseless to try to live your life thinking “today is the day it all goes down.” It’s like people who hid in bunkers during the 1960s.

    Do you really think many posters ont his blog are “hiding in their bunkers”

    I think we are Fcuked, but i still go about my daily life while keeping a plan B in mind.

    I really don’t see how an objective observer could deny that the economy is improving.

    Really? are real wages up? is unemployment up? have they canceled the annual trillion dollar deficits that are set to occur for the next several years? Has there been a burst of repatriation of manufacturing to the US? Did someone discover cold fusion? have credit card defaults dropped back to normal levels from their historic highs? have banks “assets” suddenly inflated so that mark-to-market is at par? has the fed stopped QE and has the treasury stopped monetizing debt? has global trade reignited to previous levels, has china’s megaton CRE bubble ceased to exist, has the 11 billion pension deficit in the state of NJ been eliminated and NJ manufacturing rebuilt?

  117. Final Doom says:

    skep (118)-

    Where, exactly, is the demand for credit right now in the US?

    Even consumer credit is contracting at a record pace.

    Does it matter which institutions desire to lend when businesses and consumers are deleveraging? I’m again reminded of the “transfusing a corpse” metaphor.

    The only people in this economy who are clamoring for credit are exactly the ones to whom credit should never be extended. I prove this point to myself daily when I walk into my office.

  118. relo says:

    Something for everyone: NJRE, w/ a brew connection and evil GS employees tie-in (good sight lines too ;)

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703734504575125631262608798.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_sections_realestate

  119. Final Doom says:

    relo (123)-

    I think the 10.75mm price is actually not bad. This house will sell.

  120. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    Skep-tard reminds me quite a bit of pre-tard. Where is pre-tard?

  121. veto that says:

    “I have both a state championship ring and a bowl ring”

    Like i said before shore, you dont brag enough.

    I think last week you said that you have been a talking head on fox and msnbc?? and this was the first we are hearing about it? after years?

    If that was part of my accomplishments, it would have been embedded into my first post on this board.

  122. Shore Guy says:

    ” 12.4% raise, which is retroactive to Jan 1 2008.”

    With inflation and rising health-care costs and the need to save for retirement, this should just about keep them even with the cost of living.

  123. make money says:

    Scottish newspaper says US transferred ammunition containers with ‘bunker-buster’ bombs to Diego Garcia in Indian Ocean. Expert: They are gearing up totally for the destruction of Iran”

    yikes. Do you own oil?

  124. TPFHAPGC says:

    #82 Clot

    Open a jar of Helmans and tell me that’s mayonaise.

    Have you morphed into Sandra Lee?

  125. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    “Skep-tard reminds me quite a bit of pre-tard. Where is pre-tard?”

    I apologize to Sarah Palin if she finds this statement offensive.

  126. relo says:

    124: Ol’ Al didn’t do too badly with that Engineering degree.

    http://www.gsc.com/people/senior.html

  127. make money says:

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3863920,00.html

    keep forgetting the link. I’m gonna miss Almadinajad, he was a funny character who went into Columbia and denied the holocost.

  128. Libtard says:

    “I have both a state championship ring and a bowl ring”

    Just to set the record straight, I performed as a beat boxer on the Jerry Lewis Telethon.

  129. Shore Guy says:

    Veto,

    I have little in life that is worth bragging about (except for Mrs. Shore and Little Shore). I am a guy who was born on the wrong side of the tracks, who worked hard, got some breaks, and is just trying to keep what little bit of success I have achieved.

    Everywhere I have ever turned, whether at the USOC and other athletic entities, or in my work on Capitol Hill, the Pentagon, certain other government agencies, with TV networks here and overseas, I am surrounded by people far brighter and talented than I will ever be.

    If I mention an experience, it is to put a comment in context, not to crow.

  130. House Whine says:

    At the risk of being criticized here, the program that should not be cut is breakfast for the school kids that are in need. I can’t in good conscience deny this to them. If I am not mistaken this is a program Christie is looking to cut in some fashion. Personally, I know from personal experience (unfortunately) of the consequences of not providing children with this, a most basic of needs.

  131. skep-tic says:

    The deficit and nat’l debt are bad, but they’re sort of like the eroding ozone layer or global warming– maybe it’ll be a problem some day, but in the meantime do you stop driving your car, heating your house, etc?

    Consumers are deleveraging because they’re unemployed and because some are strategically defaulting on debt they never should have had in first place. But American consumer culture has. not. changed. When employment comes back (and it will), American’s will buy whatever they can get and borrow as much as they can to get it.

  132. Shore Guy says:

    “Just to set the record straight, I performed as a beat boxer on the Jerry Lewis Telethon”

    An achievement I can never hope to come close to. I bow in deference.

  133. veto that says:

    “Chi gets all bent out of shape at ZeroHedge, Mish Etc because he knows that the collapse is inevitable and he and his ilk will be out of a job.”

    Juice,
    There is a growing disparity between reality and worst case scenarios on this board and in the media (or micro-media). There are two increasingly deviating extremes now with less and less room for anyone to be in the middle because the middle is increasingly contradictory.

    Nonetheless, one of these extremes is missing something or being mislead.

    im pretty sure that we wont get the systemic collapse – so i guess that puts me at the other end by default.

  134. Painhrtz says:

    Mike I hunt in far sussex county, the two differences between it and Pennsyltuckey are the side of the river and the taxes.

  135. NJGator says:

    Stu – Now I’ve got that d*mn rap in my head. Thanks for helping make the remainder of my work day unproductive.

  136. chicagofinance says:

    Final Doom says:
    March 17, 2010 at 8:18 am
    Zero Hedge is smart people who are inside (or, can get inside) the rotten core of finance & banking. What gets posted there is shocking, and that’s because we live in shocking times.

    clotsie: So? I’m sure you can find a blog that posts stuff about what happens at the headquarters of Walmart or at a Hormel plant. What is your point? The opinion of someone who is #1 smart; #2 on the inside can still be fcuking twisted and wrong if their main intent is: #1 provocation; #2 ego masturbation; #3 channeling rage…

  137. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    Chi,

    What’s their motivation have anything to with anything if what their displaying is the truth? You sound like a cop who’s pissed because some other cop spoke to internal affairs:)

  138. plg says:

    Yikes,

    The battle to ensue is likely to shape up around the so-called millionaire’s tax, a one-year income-tax surcharge on people making more than $400,000 that Mr. Christie vowed not to renew. (Democrats allowed it to lapse in December.) If that surcharge were renewed, it would bring in close to $1 billion.

    In his speech, Mr. Christie affirmed his stance on the issue, saying New Jersey’s tax burden was already the nation’s costliest. “Mark my words today: If a tax increase is sent to my desk, I will veto it,” he said.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/18/nyregion/18sewage.html?hp

  139. Shore Guy says:

    “ego masturbation”

    I initially read that as “eggo” and was perplexed, wondering if one would thaw it first.

  140. chicagofinance says:

    Pissed? I’m not pissed. I think clot needs alcohol, not trailing around the Internet to read stuff that will cause him to sh!t out his colon into the toilet….

    Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:
    March 17, 2010 at 11:09 am
    Chi,What’s their motivation have anything to with anything if what their displaying is the truth? You sound like a cop who’s pissed because some other cop spoke to internal affairs:)

  141. Final Doom says:

    whine (135)-

    Is it the hungry kids you can’t abide, or the fact that admitting we’ve come to this point also means we have to admit to ourselves we are a Third World country?

    I quit all my charitable & educational affiliations in January because I know full well it’s gonna take all I’ve got just to keep my family going and help those near to me who are going to be falling into some desperate times.

  142. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Veto 126
    “I think last week you said that you have been a talking head on fox and msnbc?? and this was the first we are hearing about it? after years?”

    I was aware, Shore has mentioned it in passing a couple of times when relevant. Maybe you were absent those days.

    Pain 139 I’m pretty far up there I’m sure you hunt with in 10 mi of my place.

  143. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    Veto,

    I don’t believe there’s anything that is not presently clear. We are in the middle of an economic collapse the speed of which has merely been reduced by government intervention. End of day the destination will still be the same.

  144. Shore Guy says:

    Does anyone here remember when you were a kid and you just kind of assumed that the adults — being adults — had their acts together and they knww what they were doing running the country?

    I remember that and also the sinking feeling I felt when I first realized that many did not have a clue.

    To paraphrase Pink Floyd, “Now I’ve got that feeling once again.” At this point, I am not sure if even 10% of our “leaders” have a friggen clue.

  145. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Juice 148 the big question is when we get there,the final outcome is ordained.

  146. chicagofinance says:

    HEHEHE: a new restaurant in Hoboken….
    http://www.mefeedia.com/watch/24333633

  147. Libtard says:

    “Is it the hungry kids you can’t abide, or the fact that admitting we’ve come to this point also means we have to admit to ourselves we are a Third World country?”

    Who makes Chiclets? It may be worth investing in.

  148. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    Can’t watch it at work. BTW ate at the Clinton Social Club joint last week. Pretty mediocre.

  149. skep-tic says:

    #150

    “Juice 148 the big question is when we get there,the final outcome is ordained.”

    I am on the same page here, I just think the end will be pushed way into the future (i.e., decades). Japan has been in slo-mo collapse for 20 yrs. We can drag it out at least that long. meanwhile, party on.

  150. Libtard says:

    Blockbuster = Bankrupt

  151. Shore Guy says:

    It is really about time to wipe al Qaeda off the map and get our forces home. Perpaps the bunber busters are destined for Waziristan, etc., and not (or not exclusively) Iran (as the Iranian president is a former tunnel engineer and the main Iranian facilities are kikely to be in tunnels, more like Cheyenne Mountain than just a burried and concrete-reinforced warehouse.)

    Let us not forget what brought down the USSR — overspending money it did not have to keep up with the threat posed by the US. In the current asymetric conflict, it is we who are overspending with borrowed funds.

  152. Shore Guy says:

    It is really about time to wipe al Qaeda off the map and get our forces home. Perhaps the bunker busters are destined for Waziristan, etc., and not (or not exclusively) Iran (as the Iranian president is a former tunnel engineer and the main Iranian facilities are kikely to be in tunnels, more like Cheyenne Mountain than just a burried and concrete-reinforced warehouse.)

    Let us not forget what brought down the USSR — overspending money it did not have to keep up with the threat posed by the US. In the current asymetric conflict, it is we who are overspending with borrowed funds.

  153. veto that says:

    I wonder if uso will pop through the roof when the scottish newspaper leak makes it to the mass media?

  154. House Whine says:

    We’re not a third world country yet and there is no viable excuse for cutting the food program, such as it is, for feeding schoolkids. I fault no one for not contributing to charities anymore and from what I have seen behind the scenes at the wasted $ at some big charities I don’t want to contribute anymore either. But, I hope I can still scrounge around for enough $$ to give kids eggs in the morning and a container of milk.

  155. Final Doom says:

    chi (145)-

    I don’t need to surf around the internet to find things that rile me up. Frankly, most of what I read is only confirmation to me that I am not alone in my experiences working at the fringes of our sham of an economy.

    Here’s a little abstract of what I do every day in my economic life:

    1. Field calls from people- who never had a financial problem before- who have lost pretty much everything and now stand to lose the roof over their heads.

    2. Assemble documentation to help these people resolve their housing problems. Every completed file represents an open-and-shut case of mortgage fraud. However, I know that no law enforcement agency will ever look into a single one of these cases. Anywhere.

    3. Stop to contemplate the fact that the dire situations represented by #1 and #2 are also (or, already have been) the daily reality for close to 2,000,000 families in the US.

    4. Drink.

    5. Make some attempt to communicate with, wheedle and/or encourage agents in my office who are failing, and who, at any given time, collectively owe me between 20K-30K.

    6. Occasionally intervene on behalf of the agents mentioned in #5 to prevent eviction, car repo, termination of MLS privileges or any number of other awful economic and personal outcomes.

    7. Review and at least attempt to pay down some personal or business debt.

    After over two years of this lather, rinse, repeat, please pardon me for mentioning that our economy might be askance. However, as HE mentions in #142, the reporting at ZH and Mish is essentially true, in that they are describing real-life people, circumstances and outcomes. We may agree or disagree as to the relative illness of the economy or the measures needed to return it to health…but there is, IMO, no debating the seriousness of the situation and the dire implications of ignoring the symptoms any longer.

  156. veto that says:

    Well another year and no itemized deductions.

    Remember people when you are doing your rent-to-own analysis, dont forget to add the extra $300-800 of tax returned (per month!) that you are foregoing by renting.

    That reason alone is making me want buy a home this weekend. especially considering that im enclosing pmts with my tax returns to both the fed and state govt!

  157. njescapee says:

    Shore, it appears any folks in DC that might have a clue are nowhere close to where decisionmaking is being done. We are so screwed.

  158. Final Doom says:

    Whine (159)-

    Would disagree. We are solidly Third World, and our degeneracy is accelerating.

  159. relo says:

    These guys must have had a stroke when they saw the article about the Passaic County guy who recently retired.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/18/nyregion/18sewage.html?hp

  160. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [11] doom

    Got your orange on today, I take it???

  161. Final Doom says:

    veto (161)-

    Try being a small business owner and homeowner and submitting three straight years of tax returns with a negative AGI.

    If I owed some taxes right now, I’d be happy.

  162. chicagofinance says:

    Pretty cool. I got a little hacked off at a WSJ writer, so I fired off this e-mail….then I see this column….

    Mr. Arends:
    You really lost your moral compass with this one. I fully appreciate the set of circumstances that would drive you to compose such a column, but your Machiavellian tone is completely out of line with a subject that should be treated with tremendous delicacy. I only hope that you provide a sequel to clean the bad taste out of the mouths of your audience.

    Respectfully,

    WSJ
    ROI
    MARCH 16, 2010,6:34 P.M. ET

    8 Things To Consider Before Walking Away From Your Mortgage
    By BRETT ARENDS

    Last week I received an email from a desperate couple in Illinois. Here’s the edited version of their note:

    “My wife and I have been struggling, morally, with what to do. We have two interest-only, adjustable-rate mortgages with two different lenders coming due in May of 2011. I currently can handle paying all my bills–but just barely, with nothing left over for replenishing of the emergency fund, or even my kids’ college savings.

    In one year, when those adjustable rate mortgages adjust, it’s a different story. The home is now worth about 70% of the loan values. We do not want to stay in the home and have been trying to be proactive about doing something before the rates adjust. My lenders both said that if I do a short sale they would definitely make me sign a promissory note (for the deficiency). That defeats our purpose, so it is not an option for us. Bankruptcy attorneys have told me I make too much money to file for Chapter 7. I am currently employed. Last June I lost my previous job, and squandered our savings to stay above water with bills and the mortgages. Hindsight is 20/20 and at the time I should have filed for Chapter 7.

    So, I am considering just letting the home go to foreclosure, saving my money, paying off other smaller debts (such as credit cards, and car loan), but am hesitant. I want/need to do the right thing fiscally for my family, but am wavering on the fence as to just take the plunge or not in a strategic foreclosure.

    What should we do?”

    These people are far from alone. Millions of middle-class Americans today are in a similar situation. They are struggling with their mortgage payments, and cannot sell because they are a long way underwater, owing more on their home than it is worth. They have wiped out their savings trying to keep up. One worker in six is either unemployed or underemployed, and there is a tsunami of rate resets coming in the next two years.

    No one forced them to borrow –but no one forced the banks to lend either. More important right now is how they get out of it. I took this conundrum to two experienced bankruptcy attorneys–Richard Nemeth in Cleveland and Jeffrey Tromberg in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.–for their advice. Here are some thoughts they offered.

    1. Put those suitcases down! Stop and take a deep breath. Sure, you could just walk away from the home today. There is a decent chance the banks won’t come after you for the shortfall either. And, as I’ve written before, the issue is not really a moral one. But you should first make sure you explore all your options to make sure you do it right.

    2. Find out if you are eligible for help from the federal government. If your lender won’t modify the loan or agree to wipe out the deficiency through a short sale, Uncle Sam may still help you. The Making Home Affordable program was signed into law by President Obama last year. It hasn’t achieved as much as some may have hoped, but it has still helped some homeowners. The program offers mortgage modification and refinancing for some homeowners who are struggling, but there are conditions. The Department of Housing & Urban Development also offers help and advice on avoiding foreclosure: Details can be found here.

    3. Get another legal opinion. You say you’ve spoken to bankruptcy attorneys, but were they specialists? Bankruptcy law in the U.S. like something out of Charles Dickens, even though it was just rewritten a few years ago. It’s convoluted, self-contradictory, and complex. The laws vary from state to state, and case law is changing almost weekly. It’s just five years since Congress passed sweeping legal changes, and many of the new rules are only getting road tested now. You may get different answers from different experts. Even those who pushed for the law, such as the lending industry, have been surprised at how some of it has worked out. It’s worth making sure your counsel knows the minutiae. The National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA.org) should be able to help you find a local specialist.

    4. Double-check to see if you can still squeeze under the bar for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 is probably the simplest way to clear your debts, walk away and start again. I know you say you’ve been told that you earn too much to qualify. The 2005 law made qualification much tougher. But the new means test is actually far less restrictive than many people–including many attorneys–think. It allows some pretty generous exclusions from your gross income. You are, for example, allowed to deduct some pension and 401(k) contributions. You are also allowed to deduct charitable donations up to 15% of your gross income, though you have to demonstrate some history of these contributions. Make sure your counsel is experienced at bankruptcy filings and has fully explored how you might be able to make these work for you.

    5. Realize that even if you can’t file now, that may change. The means test also excludes mortgage payments from your income. So even if you earn too much to file for Chapter 7 today you may do so when the mortgage rates reset. Mr. Nemeth says that the bankruptcy laws contain some peculiar loopholes you need to know about. For example, they may actually reward you for falling behind on your mortgage payments. That’s because your mortgage arrears will help reduce your effective income for the purposes of the means test–even if you plan to walk away from the home. Crazy? Yes. But blame the lenders. This is the law they, um, lobbied for.

    6. Understand how a Chapter 13 might help you after all. Chapter 13 is “bankruptcy lite,” for those whose income is too high to qualify for a Chapter 7. It involves a debt repayment plan (it’s something like the Chapter 11 bankruptcy process used by corporations, though not as generous). In Chapter 13, the courts work out how much of your unsecured debts you can reasonably repay and set up a schedule to repay it.

    Chapter 13 will not reduce the value of your primary mortgage. But make sure your counsel understands a little-known gap in the law that can help distressed homeowners who either have two mortgages, or one mortgage and a home equity line on top. If the property value has fallen so far that the primary mortgage is now under water, the courts can rule that the second mortgage is now an unsecured loan. And that, miraculously, means they can modify it. An example: You take out a $200,000 first mortgage and $50,000 second mortgage to buy a home for $250,000. The home then falls in value to $180,000. As that’s not even enough to cover the first mortgage completely, the second mortgage now has no collateral against it at all. The court, in most jurisdictions, can now modify that second mortgage the way they could other unsecured debt, such as a credit card payment.That could include reducing it to zero.

    7. Keep contributing to your 401(k), IRA and 529 plans. It’s very easy in a crisis to stop thinking about the distant future. After all, you’ve got your hands full dealing with today. But this is a dangerous reaction. Why? Because money invested in a qualified retirement plan, and in 529 college savings plans under some circumstances, enjoy substantial legal privilege. They can be sheltered from creditors in bankruptcy. And the contributions may actually help you qualify for bankruptcy–as mentioned above. But the earlier you start making these contributions, and the longer you have been making them, the more respect the courts are likely to give them. Mr. Tromberg’s advice: “If both parents are working, I would contact the HR or 401(k) coordinator at work and say ‘I’d like to max out my contributions today.'”

    8. If all else fails? There are not always easy answers. If there really is no way to make use of Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, you may indeed decide just to walk away from your mortgage and let the chips fall where they may. You have already made valiant efforts to keep up your payments. You are absolutely right to put your family’s finances first. But do explore the implications fully. Specialist knowledge can help. For example in some states the lenders have a very limited time to file legal papers for the arrears. And in many cases they are so swamped that they aren’t even bothering. And before walking you should also at least consider ceasing payments on your mortgage but staying in the home. Many mortgage lenders have made this crisis worse by refusing to sit down with borrowers to strike a deal. Alas, they may react better to a stopped check than a polite phone call.

  163. Lots of layoffs going on today. Both back office and sales/trading.
    1345 is not a happy place.

  164. Simon says:

    Doom,

    Why #7
    “7. Review and at least attempt to pay down some personal or business debt.”

    Does welcoming the oblivion include paying down debt?

    You speak so conclusively and repeatedly about the end of civilization and then one of the 7 top things you do in your day is debt service.

  165. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [128] make

    I think Shore is closer to the mark. The bunker busters may be for the tribal areas.

    Makes sense as it accomplishes numerous goals—kill AQ; scare the shiite out of the Iranians; sorta scare the paks; and subtly tell the chinese that this isn’t their lake.

    Also, if you are going to use them against AQ, there’s a good chance they get used and not just gather dust. That way, we get to test them further too, and perhaps develop the sort of ordinance that can take out ultra-hardened targets like Shore suggests.

    I gotta drink with shore sometime. His erudition in so many areas shames me.

  166. House Whine says:

    163- Well then let’s agree to disagree. Maybe I am living here in my ivory tower. To my mind, a 3rd world country is one in which the majority of the population are not able to eat 3 meals a day and don’t have a secure roof with toilet and shower. I just don’t see that as being the case here in the U.S. I do agree that the middle class especially is seeing their standard of living ebbing away, but that doesn’t make us a 3rd world country.

  167. Final Doom says:

    simon (169)-

    If oblivion gets me, I want to have as little debt as possible. Also don’t want the wife & kids to have to handle it. My dad didn’t do that to me, so I’d like to keep the streak intact.

    You really don’t want to mess with me today, Simon.

  168. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [167] chifi,

    I was just formulating advice on no. 7. Assets in those accounts are not includible in a bankruptcy estate and are beyond the reach of creditors. So funding them in advance of a walkaway is a good move.

    Haven’t examined to see if they can be unwound as fraudulent transfers though. To be safe, fund as far in advance as you can.

  169. relo says:

    161: Veet, not that you need my help,

    To illustrate, as you know, the delta is itemized ded. – std. ded. * your marginal tax rate. For someone in the 25% bracket (MFJ), on a $500k pos w/ 20% down ($400k mtg @ 5%) & $10k in ppty tax you’re looking at @ $400+/mo. (based on a full year).

    I’m thinking routine maintenance, etc. during ownership would far outstrip this.

  170. chicagofinance says:

    I don’t think we disagree. I think the problem is what veto said….the gist is that all discussions in this arena become binary. I don’t look at entrails all day. You are a fireman who is volunteering at Ground Zero without a facemask. You are breathing in asbestos with every breath…..what would you have me say? I understand that it takes a personal toll….I take no satisfaction in being able to discern that piece of it……

    Final Doom says:
    March 17, 2010 at 11:36 am
    chi (145)-
    We may agree or disagree as to the relative illness of the economy or the measures needed to return it to health…but there is, IMO, no debating the seriousness of the situation and the dire implications of ignoring the symptoms any longer.

  171. Final Doom says:

    whine (171)-

    You need to get out more. I see food insecurity in 750K McMansion neighborhoods.

  172. John says:

    anyone who needs a mortgage can’t afford a house.

  173. Final Doom says:

    chi (175)-

    The discussions have become binary as more and more people realize it’s a zero-sum game.

    Should the zero-sum game devolve into one where the two outcomes are life or death?

    I ask that question in all seriousness.

  174. A.West says:

    If Christie keeps this up, he may stop my company from relocating to PA in 3 years. Maybe he’s able to calculate that it’s better to get 6% from 10 millionaires than 10% from 0 millionaires.
    Maybe he’s also noticed that very few new companies not attached to the state are locating in NJ, in part because they hope to or already make over $400,000 per year.

  175. Final Doom says:

    (157)-

    Nice to see that John has time-traveled from 1962 back to 1857.

    John, say hi to Millard Fillmore while you’re there.

  176. Mr Hyde says:

    Relo

    Sewage-treatment workers earn an average of about $42,000 a year, a figure unchanged since 2001. Los Angeles pays a starting salary of $71,000 for similar work.

    If i land on hard times, guess it off to the LA sewer authority for me.

  177. Final Doom says:

    West (179)-

    Bad millionaires. All they do is create jobs, pay taxes and support charities. We should drive them all out of NJ.

    [sarcasm off]

    The real problem is that the lower middle classes and poor don’t pay enough taxes…and most don’t pay any.

  178. Outofstater says:

    Did I hear this right from Christie’s speech yesterday? The NJEA has 200,000 members and they each pay about $700 per year in dues? So the union has a $140 million budget? And some of its staff are in the state pension plan? So they spend $140 million a year to get more money from the taxpayers “for the children” and at the end, they still collect from the taxpayer in the form of a pension?

  179. Final Doom says:

    plg and his ilk would be shocked at how many millionaires- then, the people whose jobs were working for those millionaires- I’ve helped move out of NJ.

  180. Outofstater says:

    #135 I agree with you. Kids should be fed. I also agree with Christie’s decision not to cut aid to the food banks. And I also don’t have a problem with food stamps – as I understand it, food stamps provide the biggest jolt to the economy per dollar spent than any other stimulus plan.

  181. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [104] yikes

    You should embrace the millionaire’s tax. If it passes, you can make money by leasing out every room in your house to Bergen county hedge fund traders so that they can declare it as their primary (and tax) residence.

    Of course, they would technically be in default on their mortgages if they have a primary residence condition. And the state of NJ is gonna take a real dim view of that, to be sure.

    But tracking residency is the state’s job, and they don’t have the staff. And the bank isn’t gonna care if the mortgage gets paid. Further, if there is an SAHM, then there is good prospect of income shifting and gaming the deductions, such that the cheater actually has less taxable income and gets more deductions than they would otherwise.

    So someone that cheats on NJ by declaring PA residency may actually save more than just the millionaire’s tax, and the tax may be the impetus to cheat. That deprives NJ of the entire tax nut.

    Further, this is backed up by research. Study after study shows that the correlation between cheating and tax savings is linear—the greater the burden, the more likely people will cheat. Again, an onerous new tax will be a very heavy straw on a lot of camels’ backs.

    Thus, ATEOTD, the tax not only does not collect the revenue you think it will, but may actually be costing you revenue.

    Not saying it is right, but tax policy people recognize this, and a poorly conceived tax will cause this result.

  182. Final Doom says:

    Maybe we’ll finally get serious about dealing with issues when we see some starving kids every day.

  183. Mr Hyde says:

    Doom,

    Nope, we would just ship them off to camden or newark

  184. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [17] make

    Speaking from experience, the Rutgers folks are gonna go nuts. I mean everyone will go nuts, but the Rutgers camp will be apoplectic about “dilution.”

  185. Final Doom says:

    plume (189)-

    This, in a state where Rutgers’ football coach is the state’s highest-paid employee.

    This is what happens when a population embraces idiocy.

  186. Hey this is a great story. I’m going to email this to my friends. I stumbled on this while surfing for some rock lyrics, I’ll be sure to come back. thanks for sharing.

  187. plg says:

    Final Doom,

    I am not too worried, NJ is 3rd on the list of the states with the most millionares (liquid).

    Nearly 200,000 millionares or 6.22 percent of the population.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/real-estate/article/109083/the-richest-states-in-america

  188. John says:

    You know what is going to suck when people open their 1Q 401K statements and see how much their balance went up!! They might go out and spend money and home prices might rise!

  189. Shore Guy says:

    Nom,

    I did not used to see it this way but, I now bwlieve that a flat tax (where everyone shares the burden of supporting government) is the way to go. When half the people get a free ride, why should they care about the cost of a ticket?

  190. NJGator says:

    Clot 190 – totally agree. Folding anything into Rutgers is not a way to save money.

  191. Final Doom says:

    shore (194)-

    Please explain this to dopes like plg, who are licking their chops at the prospect of shaking down the remaining millionaires we have left in NJ.

    Also, the assclown plg should have also mentioned this little tidbit (from the same Yahoo article referenced @ #192):

    “In 2007, New Jersey actually had the top spot with $228,442 millionaire households, but apparently some have left for other shores. Part of the problem may be New Jersey’s higher tax rate.”

  192. Anon E. Moose says:

    Veto[164];

    Basically a wash for me considering that state income tax becomes a itemizable deduction.

  193. njescapee says:

    I bet PLG is actually Rush Limbaugh pulling everyone’s legs :-)

  194. Final Doom says:

    SRS dips under $6. Know what that means, kiddies?

    There is a God.

  195. Happy Daze says:

    Your trigger finger getting itchy like mine?

  196. relo says:

    197: Moose,

    AMT an issue too (not directed to you personally, just pointing out another item to throw into the calc.)?

  197. John says:

    BMW Plans 54% Delivery Gain as Porsche Seeks to Double Sales

    Green shoots baby!!!

    AMT sucks, take away deductions for wife kids, re taxes, state taxes etc. No Mr. O wants to put a medicare tax on my interest income. I am moving to Bermuda if this keeps up.

    AMT makes me not want to but trade up home as they all have 20K taxes and not a penny is tax deductable.

  198. Simon says:

    Well the good news is your family survives your oblivion. I guess its more of a personal oblivion than the general one you keep refering to.

    Final Doom says:
    March 17, 2010 at 11:54 am

    simon (169)-

    If oblivion gets me, I want to have as little debt as possible. Also don’t want the wife & kids to have to handle it. My dad didn’t do that to me, so I’d like to keep the streak intact.

    You really don’t want to mess with me today, Simon.

  199. Anon E. Moose says:

    John[194];

    I don’t buy the “wealth effect”. People still in their working years can’t spend the 401k, and with the credit punch bowl gone, no longer can they spend phantom home equity. It may be a sense of relief to see the dow creeping up on 11k, but it was at 14k in early ’08. In any case, it sure don’t change the duckets.

  200. Mr Hyde says:

    This looks like fun

    http://westernrifleshooters.blogspot.com/2010/03/19-april-2010-bring-your-sidearms-and.html

    Pistol loaded, openly carried. Rifle unloaded, slung to rear. Bandoleer of magazines containing ammo. All in accordance with rules below. Please note that guidelines below are subject to final coordination with the Department of the Interior:

    Participants and attendees are expected to know and abide by all applicable state and federal firearms laws. None of the information provided below is legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is created by reading or relying upon this information. If you have questions, then you are expected to know the applicable state and federal firearms laws before attending the event.

    Anyone prohibited from possessing a firearm by state or federal law may not possess a firearm at this event.

    Participants and attendees may not bring any firearm prohibited by state or federal law.

  201. plg says:

    Shore,

    194- When you say a “free ride” Im not sure who you are talking about. If you are talking about the income tax people earning between 0 and 20,000 pay a 1.4% tax.

    They also pay sales tax and gas taxes. So Im not sure why you assume they get a “free ride.”

  202. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    I’M SHOCKED, SHOCKED, I TELL YOU . . .

    “NEW YORK — General Motors’ new chief financial officer backtracked on a forecast by the company’s boss in January that taxpayers will make a profit on GMs $50 billion bailout by the federal government.

    Chris Liddell, who joined the company in January from Microsoft (MSFT, Fortune 500), told a group of reporters in Detroit Tuesday that the company is still committed to repaying a $7 billion loan that was made out of the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP. GM has already paid back $1.4 billion to the government and is set to repay the rest by June.

    Facebook Digg Twitter Buzz Up! Email Print Comment on this story

    But the majority of the government’s investment in GM is tied up in stock held by the Treasury Department. Liddell said there are too many variables to predict if the government will get that money back. . . .”

    /snip

  203. Mr Hyde says:

    Hurray for Obamacare!

    what was that he said about no tax increases for those who make under 200K???

    ….The forced march to pass ObamaCare continues, and all that matters now is raw politics. But opponents should go down swinging, and that means exposing such policy debacles as President Obama’s 11th-hour decision to apply the 2.9% Medicare payroll tax to “unearned income.”

    That’s what savings and investment income are called in Washington, and this destructive tax wasn’t in either the House or Senate bills, though it may now become law with almost no scrutiny.

    For the first time, the combined employer-worker 2.9% Medicare rate would be extended beyond wages to interest, dividends, capital gains, annuities, royalties and rents for …

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB20001424052748704131404575117623860083574.html

  204. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [206] plg

    Is that it? Hairsplitting?

    Compared to folks like us with effective income (and only income) tax rates around 25%, 1.4% is a free ride. Pointing to other avoidable taxes doesn’t help your argument with me. Heck, I am not sure you will win over PGC and he is a lot closer to you than to me.

    Here’s some free advice: You are entitled to your opinion, but I think you won’t convince many people here, least of all me as I have argued this and other tax issues with the very best tax academics in the nation, and I am sure that they would not appreciate the gotcha debate games either.

    But there is a whole website of fellow travelers that you might like, and you can join up as well. Here’s the link:

    http://www.dsausa.org

    I truly think you will be happy there, and will get lots of talking points that are consistent with your view.

    Enjoy!

  205. skep-tic says:

    let’s say you bid on a house and the seller’s agent came back over the phone very quickly to your agent with what seemed like pretty specific counter offer terms and said she would put the terms in writing shortly.

    A few hours pass and your agent calls their agent up again and asks when the written counter-proposal will be coming. Then the agent says she misunderstood the message and the counter-offer price is actually higher than she reported earlier.

    Do you:

    A. Take this at face value and evaluate the counter offer on its own merits or

    B. Interpret this as the Seller trying to retrade a deal and insist that the Seller formally present the offer as stated on the phone by their agent (with the implicit threat that you may walk away)?

  206. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [192] plg

    And just to educate you on the concept of ‘deadweight loss”, Maryland had a lot of millionaires too. I suggest you google search on what happened there when they imposed a millionaire’s tax.

    Newton’s Third Law of Motion: It’s not just for physics anymore.

  207. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [192] plg

    Also, try not to take it personally. I have an LL.M. in Taxation from NYU and do this for a living.

    I am happy to argue tax policy with you at a GTG sometime, but honestly, the banter is trivial and hackneyed, and wastes Grim’s bandwidth.

    Again, nothing personal. Just trying to get you to raise your game.

  208. relo says:

    208: It’s not a tax, Ket. (Link is dated but still applicable)

    http://blogs.abcnews.com/george/2009/09/obama-mandate-is-not-a-tax.html

    Nom,

    I’m guessing this doesn’t make the cut?

    I have argued this and other tax issues with the very best tax academics in the nation

  209. relo says:

    210: Counter lower than your original bid and find another prospect.

  210. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    OT Alert

    Just goes to show, you can’t cure stupid.

    “These Somali pirates picked the wrong ship to hijack.

    Troops aboard the Dutch warship HNLMS Tromp fired warning shots Wednesday off the coast of East Africa as suspected Somali pirates in two small skiffs raced toward their warship, the EU Naval Force said.

    After the pirates realized they had made what spokesman Cmdr. John Harbour called a “rather silly mistake,” they turned around and fled. EU Naval Force personnel tracked down the two skiffs and a third suspected mothership, finding ammunition and rocket-propelled grenades on board, said Harbour, a spokesman for the EU Naval Force.

    The two skiffs were destroyed and the pirates were set free on the mothership after it had been cleared of weapons. . . .”

    Friggin’ dutch. I would have sunk all three boats and sent the pirates to Gitmo.

  211. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [213] relo

    In the Newspeak dictionary, it is not a tax.

    There is some support for that view, but it is semantics. In my world, we call that a distinction without a difference.

    Put another way, if it quacks like a duck . . .

  212. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [213] relo

    BTW, just because I have argued with them doesn’t mean I persuaded them. Just want to be clear on that.

    Still, I did ace Tax Policy.

  213. Mr Hyde says:

    Skeptic.

    Take a look at the latest Flow of Funds data.

    For the first time in the history of the data set the Household and non-profit net worth is LESS Than the Total credit market debt.

    As of 1Q09 it was at about 92%. As a nation, our liabilities exceed our assets.

    This is not a perfect metric, but it certainly doesnt suggest any recovery.

  214. Doyle says:

    Gator and others,

    Yesterday you were talking about towns and the debt on their books, like in the case of GR (no debt) vs Montclair (much). Is this info readily available? Can I search somewhere to compare towns?

  215. skep-tic says:

    “210: Counter lower than your original bid and find another prospect.”

    I am inclined to simply let my original bid expire and tell them to give my agent a call when they are ready to be serious and stop playing games. the problem is that I of course have no way of knowing whether their agent actually screwed up, but it seems pretty hard to believe. I guess if she really did screw up this will teach her to be more careful next time.

  216. Mr Hyde says:

    Relo 213,

    thanks for clearing that up for me, i clearly require re-education

  217. A.West says:

    Skeptic,
    Were you going to accept the counter? If not, then ignore it and do your own counter. If you’re close, then make a final “split the diffence” counter in your direction. Assuming you want to tie that concrete block around your neck.

  218. plg says:

    Comrade,

    Alright I am going to raise my game. I assume you are referring to the fact that Maryland had 1/3 less millionares file tax returns. This alone is not evidence that millionares left the State.

    Even the Wall Street Journal admits that the primary reason is that there simply were less millionares because people earned less as a result of the economy. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124329282377252471.html

    The reason 1/3 of Maryland’s millionares went missing is, in small part, because some millionares left the State. However, the primary reason is the recession. Many people just didn’t earn 1 million per year because they got wrecked by the economy.

    Don’t come at me with some bull stats without thinking them through.

  219. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [221] Hyde

    And if the Kuciniches of the world and their ilk take over, re-education is exactly what you are gonna get.

    We can compare number tatoos in FEMA camp.

  220. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [223] plg

    That all you got? Do the math. The tax losses are so severe, they can’t be attributed solely to capital losses and all that income falling out of the bracket. Moreover, of all the taxpayers in MD subject to the tax, 1/3 were on the bubble? Again, does not compute.

    What does compute is that most of MD’s high earners work and live in DC, and VA is right across the river.

    Jeez, you are a punk.

  221. relo says:

    217: Duly noted.

  222. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [225] redux

    Should be “work and live in the DC area”

  223. skep-tic says:

    #222

    “Skeptic,
    Were you going to accept the counter? If not, then ignore it and do your own counter. If you’re close, then make a final “split the diffence” counter in your direction. Assuming you want to tie that concrete block around your neck.”

    West– yes, I was. My agent basically conveyed this over the phone and I think that then the Seller decided that maybe he could extract some more money out of me so he changed his counter a couple of hours later. Maybe I am just paranoid. I could split the difference and probably get the deal done but I feel like I am being squeezed and don’t like it.

  224. veto that says:

    Stocks Rally Again But “Zombie Market” Faces “Major Risks,” Bleier Says

    Mar 17, 2010

    Stocks were higher midday Wednesday, putting the Dow on track for a seventh-straight gain while the S&P 500 moved to its highest level in 17 months.

    In what’s become a familiar pattern, the rally is occurring on low volume and without any of the drama investors have become accustomed to in the past two years. That’s good news but it’s also a sign of what Scott Bleier, president of CreateCapital.com, calls a “zombie market,” where the vast majority of trading volume is computer driven and occurs at the open and during the last 10 minutes of the session.

    Bleier’s theory — which definitely has some “conspiracy” elements — is that policymakers at the highest levels of government have come to the realization that “it’s the capital market tail that wags the economy’s dog.”

    While there’s no way to prove the “plunge protection team” is in the market buying futures to make sure major averages stay above “critical” levels, what is true is the Federal Reserve has taken extraordinary measures to aid the financial markets.

    By keeping rates at zero for an “extended period,” the Fed has allowed the banks to repair their balance sheets by earning the spread between the fed funds rate (effectively zero) and the “risk-free” rate of return on 10-year Treasuries, which is hovering around 3%. This “free money” trade is a big reason why banks have been sitting on TARP funds, rather than lending them out.

    But the Fed’s comments about buying mortgage-backed securities are at least as important as the comments about rates, Bleier says. The Fed has pledged to purchase $1.25 trillion of agency mortgage-backed securities. In effect, the Fed is allowing banks and brokers to park their “toxic” assets on the Fed’s balance sheet and given the investment community cash equivalents in exchange. “They then turn that into investable dollars. They leverage it up and buy stocks, bonds and commodities,” Bleier says.

    While one of many factors, the Fed’s MBS purchase program is the single-most important reason why the financial markets have risen so dramatically in the past year, Bleier suggests.

    That being the case, the critical question is what happens if, as currently planned, the Fed winds down the program at the end of the month?

    Along with raised earnings expectations, this “hand-off between a government-supported market and a market that can stand on its own two feet” is the “major risk” facing the bulls, Bleier says. “We have not see any technical signs to bail from this current rally [but] we have got our finger on the trigger.”

  225. chicagofinance says:

    njescapee says:
    March 17, 2010 at 12:49 pm
    I bet PLG is actually Rush Limbaugh pulling everyone’s legs :-)

    escape: the overall activity is correct, but the author is not…..

  226. relo says:

    228: Beat ’em about the head and shoulders w/ the inspection contingency.

  227. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [223] plg

    Oh, and recession losses? Sure. And they didn’t have tax attorneys and accountants to move income off their personal returns for that year, or engage in some other planning techniques.
    Nope, nothing to see here.

    To be truthful, I wish all the tax authorities had your view. Nope, no tax evasion or avoidance here. Just unlucky millionaires who will be back.

  228. Barbara says:

    Middlesex county is pretty third world. Goat carcasses out for the weekly trash pick up. Unregulated and unrefrigerated food being sold on fold out tables on random corners. Underage sex trafficing and bordellos set up in random houses. Front porches made into living space with plywood and caulk, little kids milling around outside at 10pm, school nights or, milling around 1pm, school days.
    Many parts of the USA have gone 3rd world years ago, your “gated community” via a lucky jug handle and major highway aside. Think you’re immune? The people living in Princeton proper thought so too. Go take a walk in down town Princeton neighborhoods…

  229. John says:

    ChiFi, this is the bond you told me not to buy a few months ago at 79!

    What up dude?

    FIFTH THIRD BANCORP BOND 08.25000% 03/01/2038
    Price (Ask) 105.810
    Yield to Worst (Ask) 7.738%
    Yield to Maturity 7.738463%
    Third Party Price 106.632

  230. Mr Hyde says:

    Greece going to the IMF….

    Whats the deadpool on greece. What Euro-nation gets taken down due to CDS issued on greece debt?

  231. Mr Hyde says:

    barb

    Goat carcasses out for the weekly trash pick up. Unregulated and unrefrigerated food being sold on fold out tables on random corners. Underage sex trafficing and bordellos set up in random houses

    ……huh? sounds like a party!

  232. John says:

    But next year I bet a ton more millionaires. Plenty of rich folks had an unusual amount of portfolio in two year t-bills, one year cds and money markets in 2008. Half their portfolio crashed and compared to 2007 interest income droped like a pig. Plenty of people between March 2009 and March 2010 let every single t-bill and CD roll into stock, high yield bonds and corporates. 2009 tax returns and 2010 tax returns will be suprising.

    plg says:
    March 17, 2010 at 1:45 pm
    Comrade,

    Alright I am going to raise my game. I assume you are referring to the fact that Maryland had 1/3 less millionares file tax returns. This alone is not evidence that millionares left the State.

    Even the Wall Street Journal admits that the primary reason is that there simply were less millionares because people earned less as a result of the economy. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124329282377252471.html

    The reason 1/3 of Maryland’s millionares went missing is, in small part, because some millionares left the State. However, the primary reason is the recession. Many people just didn’t earn 1 million per year because they got wrecked by the economy.

    Don’t come at me with some bull stats without thinking them through.

  233. Mr Hyde says:

    Re Greece

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100317/ap_on_bi_ge/eu_greece_financial_crisis

    Doesnt greece have a magor stake in some of the larger balkans banks? That could make for some nice dominoes

  234. Mr Hyde says:

    magor = major

  235. plg says:

    Comrade,

    What exactly is the math, I don’t see any math in your response?

    Why is it impossible that most of the 1/3 were due to a loss in income, particularly capitol gains? The stock market lost 50% of its value and real estate tanked. It is absolutely possible that millionares lost income.

    Here is the math. As The Sun reports, the Maryland state comptroller found that the number of state residents with net taxable income of $1 million or more declined from 7,067 in 2007 to 4,910 last year. So that is a little over 2,000 millionares lost. That could be people who work in the real estate sector alone whose incomes fell off a cliff.

    In addition, if you look closely at the MD numbers the number of people in the 150K to 999,000 bracket grew noticeably. While the preliminary number of returns with taxable income over $1 million fell by 291 – or 13 percent – the number of returns with taxable income ranging from $500,000 to $999,999 rose by 390 – or around 8
    percent. The $250,000 to $499,999 band of taxable income grew even more, expanding by 3,095 returns or 17 percent. http://www.itepnet.org/MD_Millionaires.pdf

    There is the math. There is no evidence at that Maryland had a larger loss of millionares than any other state or the nation as a hole.

  236. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [223] plg

    and then there is this:

    “One out of every eight Maryland millionaires who filed a Maryland tax return in 2007 filed no return in 2008, causing the state a loss of $1 billion of its tax base.”

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/26002.html

    That’s NO Return. Not a return with less money. NO RETURN means they are no longer MD taxpayers.

    Keep hoping and changing though.

  237. njescapee says:

    Barb, has chuck’s cafe in princeton gone mexican yet? I heard union city has chinese / mexican takeout joints all over the place.

  238. EWellie says:

    This is making me nuts. We’ve been waiting by the sidelines for the inevitable (?) rise in interest rates, so we could buy a house for a lower price. Now I’m starting to wonder whether this will ever happen. Anyone else getting annoyed by this?

  239. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Rep. Steve King (R-IA)Speaking to the Huffington Post shortly after his speech, King declared that a peaceful uprising, a la the successful overthrowing of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia on the streets of Prague in 1989 “would be fine with me.”

    “Fill this city up, fill this city, jam this place full so that they can’t get in, they can’t get out and they will have to capitulate to the will of the American people,” he said.

    “So this is just like Prague under communist rule?” the Huffington Post asked.

    “Oh yeah, it is very, very close,” King replied. “It is the nationalization of our liberty and the federal government taking our liberty over. So there are a lot of similarities there.”
    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/03/steve-king-calls-for-revolution-in-the-streets-of-washington-to-stop-health-care-bill.php

  240. Painhrtz says:

    Nothing too see here move along

    400 million people no water = tipping point

    In the end it is always about resources

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100317/sc_afp/chinaenvironmentdrought

  241. Final Doom says:

    west (222)-

    Skep is searching for a way to fail. He doesn’t need our help to accomplish this.

  242. Mr Hyde says:

    Pain,

    No worries, i hear there GDP growth is supposed 9.5% this year!!!

  243. Painhrtz says:

    True but lead laden plastic doesn’t grow crops

  244. Final Doom says:

    plume (225)-

    The idiot keeps reeling you in. #223 is one of the five dumbest things I’ve ever read here.

  245. Mr Hyde says:

    Pain,

    I’m sure there are no nasty side effects of this…

    The government announced last week that it had initiated hundreds of cloud-seeding operations in the region in recent months, using rockets fired into the sky or chemicals dropped from aircraft in a bid to induce rainfall.

    And why is the dude wearing a suit while digging in the lake bed?

  246. Mr Hyde says:

    Pain 248,

    But steamed cardboard and melamine milk powder do a body good!

  247. Mr Hyde says:

    Pain,

    for more fun read up on the condition of some of their major aquifers.

  248. plg says:

    Comrade,

    I understand that when there are less millionare filers that they have no return. The fact is the were just less millionares and it is born out by the numbers.

    The dramtic increase in filers in the 250-500K categary and the 500-999K categaroy were formerly millionares. They were bumped down to lower brackets by, most likely losses in capitol gains during the biggest market decline and real estate crash in modern history.

    It is perfectly logical that there would be less millionare filers in such an economic climate. What seems highly implausable is thousands of people earning in excess of 1 mil per year moving residences to Virginia to avoid a few thousand dollars in taxes. That is just anti-tax propaganda without any evidence to back it up.

  249. Painhrtz says:

    I’m sure it won’t I’m so glad i might be going back there this year.

    Protect from radioactivity, poisonous arachnids?

    Hey Al loved you opining on how this weekends nor’easter was the result of global warming, like we have never had rainy nor’easters in March before. You wonder why most people are tuning out the global climate change debate.

    Representative King – if most folks didn’t already think you were looney tunes this is actually a great idea. Make sure you don’t schedule it when American Idol or Glen Beck are on or the turn-out may be just enough to shut down a bus stop. I’m sure Jamil will be there though.

    We are so FCuKED

  250. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [240] plg

    First, you rely on ITEP, which is not much better than relying on CPBB or TJN; they have an agenda, and making MD look bad isn’t on that agenda. You might as well cite to Olbermann or Maddow.

    Further, did you expect MD policymakers to say “gee, we drove off our millionaires so you all will have to pony up more money”? I consider that bad policy, and worse to announce that the results are the complete opposite of what you projected. I won’t hold my breath for that press release.

    Second, I didn’t say I was giving you math. I said for you to do it. Save the b1tchy act for your spouse. It doesn’t get you debate points.

    Now, you did parrot ITEPs math, and that lends support to the premise that the millionaires are just losing money.

    Ever consider why? (actually, don’t consider that. We tax attorneys would rather you didn’t, especially if you aren’t voting our way. We don’t like to reveal our tricks).

    Now, since we can’t see the actual returns, I can’t say whether you are right or wrong. Neither can you. So we are left to speculate (just as ITEP did): Were these simply market losses in a bad year, or did MD millionaires do enough tweaking to get themselves out of the bracket (or did they simply move?) Still, you are an enterprising sort, and so desperately want to prove me wrong. By now, all those returns on extension have been filed. Care to revisit those stats and tell me what they say? Let me know if the millionaires showed up.

    Finally, let me ask you this: When the economy turns around, think those millionaires will be filing MD returns?

    Especially in light of the following?

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/26002.html

    The tax was supposed to be temporary. It is an easy thing for some of these people to defer income for a couple of years and wait out the tax, especially the smaller business folks.

    Here’s a research tip: One thing you can research is whether Virginia’s millionaire filings went up or down in the same period, and whether their receipts down by nearly as much from that cohort. Both have economies that revolve around DC. So would expect to see similar patterns. If there was outmigration, VA would be the foremost recipient. Let me know how that research pans out.

    And keep hoping and changing.

  251. Mr Hyde says:

    Pain,

    Enough doom already, they are look at this impressive chart

    http://www.google.com/publicdata?ds=wb-wdi&met=ny_gdp_mktp_cd&idim=country:CHN&dl=en&hl=en&q=CHina+gdp

    their growth can only go up from here

  252. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [253] plg

    Speaking of doing the math:

    “What seems highly implausable is thousands of people earning in excess of 1 mil per year moving residences to Virginia to avoid a few thousand dollars in taxes. ”

    If I recall, MD Millionaire tax is approx. 3.5%.

    What isn’t reported is that under MD law, counties can charge an income tax that is 3/5 of the state tax. So the county income taxes probably went up too.

    But let’s stick with 3.5%. Assume a taxable income of one million. 3.5% of that is $35,000.

    Per year. And if you make more, you pay more.

    And that is just the millionaire portion. Relocate your tax residence to VA and you save more than that as the VA tax rate is lower, plus there is no county income tax. Relocate to Florida and you save everything (very few taxpayers likely could do this however).

    And you would not even have to change jobs or relocate a business. I presume you are aware that MD-VA-DC have a residential tax agreement?

    But hey, considering all of the foregoing, you may have supporters on this issue: Show of hands—who believes plg on tax policy, and who doesn’t?

  253. House Whine says:

    233- Barbara- I know Princeton very well. It’s a strange place these days- the immigrants are now living as “boarders” in those smaller homes within walking distance of Nassau Street. It is actually causing quite a commotion not just with the Princeton populace in the beautiful old homes but with the community of people who are being pushed out of that neighborhood. But neighborhoods change and I am not sure that anything can be done to stop it. That said, I don’t ever want to buy a house again. I am not unhappy with my house but it’s a big investment to make when you have no control over what will happen years down the road. My own neighborhood is disappointing me lately but I was lucky to get in years ago and it’s cheap for me to live here now.

  254. plg says:

    Comrade,

    I think you know your blanket assertion that 1/3 of Maryland’s millionares took flight to VA just got owned. It is hard to admit, but you were just proven wrong. The numbers and common sense make it pretty clear that perhaps some millionares left Maryland, but most were just knocked down a few income brackets.

    I know your form of admitting you were wrong is to try to characterize my facts as desperation to prove you wrong, which guess what? I did.

  255. Painhrtz says:

    Hyde kind of looks like the case shiller chart for the housing bubble.

    My FIL and I had a discussion a few years ago after my first trip to the land of rising GDP he had been there a few times prior. Asked me what I thought. My retort, the next war won’t be over oil, it will be over potable water. Had a beer and laughed. Read this today and thouth I fcuking hate it when I’m right!

  256. Final Doom says:

    Jake Gittes always knew it was all about water.

  257. Painhrtz says:

    Any one have a public servants DB for cops salaries? Need to look someone up.

  258. plg says:

    Comrade,

    You recall wrong.

    The MD millionares tax was a new tax bracket of 6.5%. The next lowest is 5.5%.

    So we are talking about a 1.5% tax increase. So on a millionare the potential increase is about $15,000.

  259. Painhrtz says:

    Awesome Doyle thanks

  260. skep-tic says:

    #246

    “west (222)-

    Skep is searching for a way to fail. He doesn’t need our help to accomplish this”

    not sure what failing is here, but I just told the sellers that I’m out. I made a very strong bid, so I would not be surprised if they come back to me in a couple of days, at which point I would have to reevaluate whether a bid that high was still necessary. Regardless, I am not worried about finding alternatives.

  261. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [263] plg

    I stand corrected on the rate. I was reading the overall for MD and Balt Cos.

    And thanks for conflating my comments to say that everyone moved to VA. I suggested that was a movitation for many, not that everyone did. Please quote me correctly and in context next time. Alinsky rules don’t work here.

    I will say again, and you can choose to hear it or not: I think you are missing the point on migration and tax planning. They are real and they are done in order to legally (and sometimes illegally) avoid tax increases of that sort.

    Further, the actual savings from either removing income from the jurisdiction or deferring it out of the current tax year is, in fact, much greater than the figure I suggested.

    Still, if your argument is the winning one, consider that MD may make the tax permanent. If you are right, then MD should make it permanent, and there won’t be deadweight loss when the economy recovers. And if they decide not to make it permanent, will the democrats in the House of Delegates be seen as havng bought into the anti-tax propaganda for which there is no proof?

    I guess we will see, won’t we?

    Personally, I hope that they do adopt it, and that there is some study of taxpayers that shows a pattern of migration and/or aggressive tax planning. That would be interesting.

  262. plg says:

    Comrade,

    I will be interested to see more info on this as well.

    I get your general argument, that increased taxes drives the wealthy out. My general feeling, which clearly could be wrong and is just my intuition, is that certain millionares will leave states like MD and NJ regardless how much you tax them.

    NJ and MD are attractive because they have high paying jobs, relatively good infrastructure, urbanity and good schools. This is attractive to young families. Once the kids are out of school and the money is made certain millionares are going to go to Florida whether the tax rate is 3.5% or 10%. They are leaving to retire.

    The fact is as long as you have ambitious young families seeking good schools and high paying jobs NJ and MD will be an appealing places to live for them. No matter what you do though, you are not going to make NJ a retirement destination.

    To me it is state “specialization.” Florida specializes in catering to retirees and NJ specializes in high earning families.

  263. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [259] plg

    “I know your form of admitting you were wrong is to try to characterize my facts as desperation to prove you wrong, which guess what? I did.”

    Heh. Okay. Believe what you want. I won’t try to convince you.

    The only thing you did to try to prove me wrong was to produce the ITEP study, which is an exercise in using statistics to support a viewpoint. There are far too many variables, which is why the ITEP study is superficial at best. Mark Twain had a choice comment for that sort of activity.

    I think that those statistics support my premise just as well as they support yours. I won’t bother explaining why, as you have amply demonstrated you aren’t interested in hearing it.

    But from my perspective, the better test would be to know if those 1,000 millionaires that filed MD returns in 2007 also filed MD returns in 2008. MD can answer it if they want.

    Further, I posit that your viewpoint actually undermines the policy you so ardently want to implement.

    But I am not going to try to convince you. History shows us that you don’t get anywhere with true believers and zealots. In fact, as I said above, I truly hope that you don’t believe anything I said here today. And I hope the policymakers in MD don’t either.

  264. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [268] plg

    Largely, agreed.

  265. plg says:

    Comrade (269)

    I am not a zealot. I am refuting remarks often made that certain taxes drive out wealthy taxpayers. It is an easy claim to make, but I think is misleading.

    I am not simply pro-taxation. I just don’t believe the wealthy are “overtaxed.” They have enjoyed an incredible period of wealth while the poor and middle class have been stagnant, so to me, it makes sense that they pay more in taxes. All of the gains are going to that group. In addition, they have enjoyed an extended period of low federal taxation, including huge capitol gains tax advantages, so a bit more in state taxes is not going to kill them.

    So why is it that the statistics I provided support your argument as much as mine?

  266. Mr Hyde says:

    Hey finance guru’s, does the following mean that the city of Milan could void the derivatives, what does this do to the counter parties?
    If they can void the derivatives its a heck of a precedent to set (in Europe anyway).

    March 17 (Bloomberg) — Deutsche Bank AG, JPMorgan Chase & Co., UBS AG and Hypo Real Estate Holding AG’s Depfa Bank Plc unit were charged with fraud linked to the sale of derivatives to the city of Milan. Bloomberg’s Elisa Martinuzzi reports. (Source: Bloomberg)

  267. Mr Hyde says:

    Nom, Plg

    sorry to but in…

    from PLG: so a bit more in state taxes is not going to kill them.

    So tax them because we can? How about a nice flat tax/fair tax without the social engineering.

  268. Outofstater says:

    #273 Amen.

  269. A.West says:

    plg,
    Besides the question of whether “millionaires” are able to flee taxes, why are you so happy to see the infliction of gross injustice by punishing the economically successful?

    Did some millionaire with a tophat and bags of money stick his cane in your bicycle spokes while on your Camden-Philly bike path, then drive away with your girl in his Rolls?

  270. chicagofinance says:

    nom: why are you arguing with a non-entity?

  271. House Whine says:

    plg- for what it’s worth, I totally agree with you. Give me a break- some of the hardest working people I have met are low income people who can’t get a break in life. They do work, and they work hard they just don’t work at jobs that pay. Thank goodness we have such people who are willing to clean our dishes, mop our floors, etc. Nobody wants to be taxed more. I know I don’t but who said life was fair?

  272. chicagofinance says:

    Mr Hyde says:
    March 17, 2010 at 3:35 pm
    Hey finance guru’s, does the following mean that the city of Milan could void the derivatives, what does this do to the counter parties? If they can void the derivatives its a heck of a precedent to set (in Europe anyway).

    ket: the courts will decide what the answer will be; but it is penny wise, pound foolish…..

    Think of it as the car insurance claim. Your deductible is $750 and you have a $1,000 bill. Submit it? You get $250 no?……no, because that claim will likely cost you well in excess of $250 in higher premiums over the next several years.

    Milan renegs…they fcuk themselves for years…..

  273. A.West says:

    plg (268),
    Again, you basically argue that NJ specializes in the shakedown because so far they’ve been able to get away with it, due to factors that have little to do with the services provided by the bureaumob. Just because the bureaumob is able to get away with it doesn’t mean they should.
    The state of NJ didn’t create the high paying jobs. NJ state spending isn’t focused on its alleged “good” infrastructure. The “good” schools primarily exist where good parents exist, and are inversely correlated with where NJ spends most on schools.

  274. veto that says:

    Treasurys: Rumors of Demise Were Greatly Exaggerated

    All the talk that US Treasurys were likely to get hammered this year have been unfounded, with investor appetite remaining strong for government debt despite a bevy of factors against it.

    “People aren’t ready to get their yield from the stock market. They aren’t ready to take on additional risk, and with real compression in corporate yields in the last nine to 12 months getting back almost to normal, Treasurys just don’t look so bad anymore,” Tower Bridge’s Whalen said. “So I think investors are performing rationally.”

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Treasurys-Rumors-of-Demise-cnbc-176347967.html?x=0

  275. Anon E. Moose says:

    PLG[271];

    I take issue with your characterization of a monolothic “wealthy”. You yourself argued above that those who were millionares slipped below the line.

    While I don’t dispute the benefits of being born into money, this country is remarkable in the degree of social mobility between classes. Many of the “wealthy” you have no problem with taxing to high heaven were working stiffs a 10 years ago who started a successful business, came up with a valuable invention, or climbed the corporate/professional ladder.

    Simply put, there is a large overlap between your “wealthy” and your “poor and middle class” if you broaded out your view to more than one tax cycle.

  276. plg says:

    Anon,

    “this country is remarkable in the degree of social mobility between classes.”

    I would like to see some evidence of that because I don’t think its true. There is some economic mobility, but for the most part people have incredible advantages that are a pretty good predictor of economic outcomes.

    In other words, if you are born in Glen Ridge I would say you success rate is virtually gauranteed to be higher than if you are born in Newark.

  277. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [271] plg

    Sorry, was out of the office for awhile.

    “So why is it that the statistics I provided support your argument as much as mine?”

    Put simply, one cannot devine from that statistic whether (a) the lower incomes were due to market losses (your point);(b) the lower incomes were due to tax planning and “timing” (manipulation of income and loss recognition) (one of my points); (c) taxpayer mobility (partially my point on migration), or (d) all of the above.

    Now, as for your points re: social justice (I know you did not use those terms, but you used the concept), I would take you to be a Rawlsian. But even Rawls recognized that his “Theory of Justice” would cause deadweight loss by disincentivizing work and wealth creation. I mean, if at the end of the day, you would only take home the same amount as a similarly-situated security guard, why study to be a doctor?

    You also suggest that the gains of the wealthy are ill-gotten, or at least not deserved, so they should be taken from them. At a minimum, you adhere strongly to marginal utility theory. But to me, justifications like marginal utility and Rawlsian notions of justice are attempts to justify redistribution of wealth. They do not answer the questions of why wealth should be redistributed, and whether redistribution is right or moral. Try as many have, I still see these as unanswered (or unanswerable) questions.

    At its very core, your premise is that the poor are more entitled to a portion of the earnings of a successful person than the successful person is. And, to me at least, you haven’t articulated why this should be so in a way that is acceptable as a universal truth.

  278. A.West says:

    plg, You mean, if your parents invest in their and their children’s futures, versus not even bothering to try to speak proper english, or consider whether they are mentally or economically able to support themselves or their children, then your sense of justice is that nevertheless all outcomes should be equal?

    My view of justice is the exact opposite, but that’s because I like Ayn Rand not John Rawls, and because I managed to pull myself up from upper lower class, while my wife pulled herself up from near-childhood starvation, and don’t understand why our early peers just allowed themselves to stagnate.

  279. Shore Guy says:

    “this country is remarkable in the degree of social mobility between classes.”

    Indeed. I grew up poor in a poor town and went to one of the worst High Schools in the State. Through hard work and a bit of luck, I managed to be the first person in my family to get a colege degree, and then go onto and finish grad school.

    While we are not rich, we are in the upper few percent of income, have no debts, and we live in quite a nice house in one of the better towns.

    Because of this, I really resent libs who want to take what we have earned because we can afford to pay. If Bill Gates and I walk into Sarbucks and order the same thing, he doesn’t pay more because he can afford to.

    Lets set a single tax rate on income and be done with it. If we want to also tax things tht are detrimental to society, such as cars that get 15 miles per gallon, excessive packaging, fatty foods, or whatever, fine. But this nonsense that different rates of taxation is somehow “fair” has got to stop.

  280. yo'me says:

    Calif. Politics Has Short Sellers Facing Big Bills
    Wednesday, 17 Mar 2010 04:23 PM Article Font Size

    Thousands of Californians who sold their homes in short sales or modified their mortgages last year are facing the prospect of huge state tax liabilities.

    That’s because state lawmakers have not passed a bill to mirror federal tax relief for people who had mortgage debt forgiven in 2009.

    Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger says he intends to veto the bill because Democratic lawmakers added an unrelated provision dealing with tax fraud penalties on big business. Democrats say they are simply conforming to federal tax rules signed by President George W. Bush.

    According to the California Franchise Tax Board, conforming state law to the federal standard would help an estimated 16,000 people reduce their California taxes between 2009 and 2012.

  281. Essex says:

    Is it me or are these arguments becoming tedious. Perhaps the nice weather is a welcome distraction?

  282. Shore Guy says:

    “At its very core, your premise is that the poor are more entitled to a portion of the earnings of a successful person than the successful person is.”

    I for one do not want people starving or living under bridges. That said, there has to be serious economic pain associated with sloth and lack of achievement.

  283. Shore Guy says:

    “According to the California Franchise Tax Board, conforming state law to the federal standard would help an estimated 16,000 people reduce their California taxes between 2009 and 2012.”

    As one who pays quarterly taxes to the Franchise Tax Board, I say WTF? Someone gets a deal and they want a tax break too? Fcuk ’em.

  284. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [271] plg

    “I am refuting remarks often made that certain taxes drive out wealthy taxpayers. It is an easy claim to make, but I think is misleading.”

    I see your point, but consider this in the way we prove the existence of things like atoms. We can’t see them but we see what they influence.

    Now, I ask you:

    If taxpayer migration due to taxes is largely a myth, why does the United States have an exit tax?

    And why are states like California trying to capture revenue from expatriated taxpayers?

    And why do states like NJ refuse to follow the federal lead of exempting salary deferrals to 401(k) plans?

    I mean, if there is no reason to fear wealth leaving, why are there roadblocks?

  285. chicagofinance says:

    Essex says:
    March 17, 2010 at 4:37 pm
    Is it me or are these arguments becoming tedious. Perhaps the nice weather is a welcome distraction?

    SX: since everyone is ignoring me, I will say it plainly…plg is a regular poster here who is trolling you…stop being idiots…

  286. chicagofinance says:

    I have been saying as much for at least 6 weeks.

  287. chicagofinance says:

    saying s.b. implying

  288. chicagofinance says:
  289. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [291] chifi

    Sorry, you are right. But it is kind of fun. Forces me to raise my game a bit as well.

  290. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [287] essex

    Oh, come on. You love it. You have been in that trench before.

  291. chicagofinance says:

    WSJ
    BUSINESS
    MARCH 17, 2010, 3:38 P.M. ET

    MillerCoors to Test-Market New Beer

    By DAVID KESMODEL

    CHICAGO—Brewing giant MillerCoors LLC plans to test-market a new beer called Batch 19, which is based on a pre-Prohibition recipe, as part of several initiatives aimed at rejuvenating sales in the sluggish U.S. market.

    MillerCoors will start selling the new brew next month in draft in bars and restaurants in Chicago, Milwaukee, San Francisco and Washington, said Peter Swinburn, chief executive of Molson Coors Brewing Co., which co-owns MillerCoors.

    Mr. Swinburn said in an interview that Batch 19—named for the year, 1919, before Prohibition began—is designed to attract consumers looking for “a true, authentic, original beer.” He said Keith Villa, master brewer at MillerCoors, found a recipe in the archives of Coors Brewing Co. in Golden, Colo., that was used to make one of its beers before alcohol was banned in the U.S. for a 13-year period. “It’s the beer that got beer banned,” Mr. Swinburn joked.

    MillerCoors, a joint venture of Molson Coors and London’s SABMiller PLC that was formed in 2008, is rolling out new products and packaging styles amid one of the biggest slumps in demand the industry has faced in years.

    Shipments of beer in the U.S. fell about 2% last year. Miller Lite’s shipments fell 6.5% and Coors Light’s rose 0.8%, according to Beer Marketer’s Insights newsletter.

    MillerCoors, the second-largest U.S. beer maker by sales after Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, said previously that it would expand to the whole country its $20, refrigerator-friendly draft-beer systems for Miller Lite and Coors Light. It also has said it plans this year to unveil a new type of bottle for Miller Lite that is designed with grooves inside the neck. The new bottle, when poured, will “actually increase the aroma” of the brew and “explode the flavor more,” Mr. Swinburn said.

    Coors Light has been a bright spot for MillerCoors, but it has struggled to find a way to revive Miller Lite, which has faced declining sales for much of the past decade. “It just takes time given where the brand was,” Mr. Swinburn said. “Yes, we’re committed to the brand. Yes, we think we’ll get it right.”

    MillerCoors, based in Chicago, is trying to be innovative in a crowded market in which new products have shown a mixed track record. MillerCoors made a hit of MGD 64, a light beer with just 64 calories, and Anheuser did so with Bud Light Lime, a lime-infused version of the nation’s top-selling brew. Some other beers, such as lime-and-salt-flavored Miller Chill, have done well initially but then foundered.

    Molson Coors has a 42% stake in MillerCoors. Its other big markets are Canada and the U.K. In February, it said its fourth-quarter profit more than doubled to $222.1 million as net sales jumped 11% to $820.8 million. Sales volumes in the U.S. and Canada have been down in recent months because of high unemployment and penny-pinching by consumers.

    Mr. Swinburn said Molson Coors is seeing some encouraging signs for new products it recently rolled out in Canada, including a 67-calorie version of Molson Canadian, but “it’s really, really early.”

    He also said the beer giant, which has dual headquarters in Montreal and Denver, would consider more acquisitions, but only if they meet stringent criteria, such as adding to Molson Coors’ per-share earnings in the short-term.

    Mr. Swinburn said the company was encouraged by the growth of Coors Light in China, and might look into buying a brewery in China or starting its own. Coors Light is currently brewed under contract in China by China Resources Snow Breweries, which is 49%-owned by SABMiller.

    “We will look to, when the time is right, underpin that volume because it’s getting to the stage now where the margin that we would enjoy from producing it ourselves would justify a certain level of capital investment,” Mr. Swinburn said. “We’ve painstakingly built that market over eight years, city by city.”

    The company sells Coors Light in 42 cities in China and has about 400 employees in the country. Sales of the brand are growing about 30% each year, though off a small base.

  292. TPFHAPGC says:

    Nom / plg

    how about the possibility that you are both wrong.

    Maybe the VA numbers can be explained by the likes of a $1Mil Hank getting replaced by a $750K Timmy when the administration changed. The staffer on Nov 6th switches primary res to file 2008 in their new home state.

    Will post later on the rest of the tax debate and #209

  293. Jim says:

    I would do away with all school sports except football. Football should be mandatory for boys. Soccor would be the first sport I would get rid of (and soccor moms, ha, ha). Under my administration music programs in public schools would consist of all students learning the Great Highland Bagpipe. School uniforms would consist of tartan kilts, hopefully in the Mackenzie tartan.

  294. chicagofinance says:

    Jim says:
    March 17, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    The vending machines should only dispense Aquafina and Laphroaig…..

  295. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    280.

    There Are Two Investment Bubbles In The World

    “There are two bubbles in the world: one is in Treasurys, the other is in urban and coastal real estate in China”

    Jim Rogers

    Cant
    in CNBC Europe, March 17

  296. I found this blog while searching google. Pretty impressive too, since google tends to display relatively old results but this one is very recent! Anyway, very informative, especially since this is not something a lot of people are able to write something good about. Take care…

  297. freedy says:

    speaking of third world countries:

    Englewood, Closter, Palisades Park, Clifton,
    Lodi, Garfield, Wallington, Fairview,N.Arlington,

    Take your pick.

  298. TPFHAPGC says:

    #244 Al

    “Fill this city up, fill this city, jam this place full so that they can’t get in, they can’t get out and they will have to capitulate to the will of the American people,”

    And how many showed up,

    Hundreds of thousands?
    Thousands?
    Hundreds?

  299. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [298] pgc

    Well, that is a possiblity. That is the problem of looking at statistics like that. There are externalities that you know are there, but you don’t know to what degree.

    But when you are talking about high earning taxpayers, the loss of a small number has an exponentially larger affect on your revenues. Fact is, you need every one of those you can get.

    Now MD is considering making the tax hike permanent, and one of the democratic delegates is reported to have said “its as if we are telling them to go live in VA.”

    That was the message I got while living in MD. So I did.

  300. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    And this is the last word on the subject from me:

    “As we and others have noted before, the Comptroller of Maryland has reported that the number of “millionaire” returns tumbled sharply between 2007 and 2008, a 30% drop in filers and 22% drop in declared income. Rather than income taxes from this group rising by $106 million, they fell by $257 million.

    The recession is certainly a contributor: everyone is earning less. But the Comptroller did an interesting additional analysis: how many people filed as millionaires before the tax increase, then did not file at all the following year? The Wall Street Journal explains the findings:

    One-in-eight millionaires who filed a Maryland tax return in 2007 filed no return in 2008. Some died, but the others presumably changed their state of residence. . . .

    A Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysis of federal tax return data on people who migrated from one state to another found that Maryland lost $1 billion of its net tax base in 2008 by residents moving to other states. . . .

    . . . . Montgomery County, outside of Washington, D.C., is Maryland’s wealthiest and was especially clobbered, losing nearly $4 billion in taxable income in 2008, with some 80% of those lost dollars from high-income returns.”

    /snip

  301. House Whine says:

    303- CLoster?? I thought that was a wealthy town.

  302. freedy says:

    closter=Korea

  303. plg says:

    Comrade,

    So does that mean that 1 in 8 millionares either left because of the tax, died or left for other reasons.

    So the millionares who left were some fraction of 1/8 of all millionares?

    That is not that many and I would suspect the increased tax revenue from the 7 out 8 who stayed far, far outweights the lost revenue from those who left because of the tax.

  304. plg says:

    Chicago,

    Just curious, is anyone who disagrees with you a troll?

  305. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [309] plg

    I know, it’s only a flesh wound. Guess I gotta get the sword out again.

    The comptroller said that 1 in 8 (12.5%) of that group left. Your point about why they left is well taken. Can I say all of them that left did so because of the tax hike? No. Can you say none of them did, like Stiglitz suggests? No.

    http://www.fiscalpolicy.org/StiglitzLetter_TaxesVsCuts_March2008.pdf

    In fact, some very high profile uber-wealthy did precisely what Stiglitz said they would not do—leave wonderful NY. Now was Stiglitz wrong, or is this all a media manipulation by the VRWC?

    One Marylander that did leave told the Baltimore Sun that this particular straw did it for them, and now, rather than gain $32,000 in income from the tax, MD lost $150,000. Others told the Sun similar things.

    Now as to why you are likely wrong on the math: You see, when a taxpayer expatriates, he takes ALL of his income with him. So not only do the remainder have to make up his portion of the millionaire tax, they have to make up all of the taxes lost.

    So your suggestion that the losses are immaterial or illusory (as evidenced by the ITEP study, and I looked into ITEP—A front for CTJ and your kind of place), are not borne out by the math. If A-F all earn 1MM, and are all taxed an additional 15K, that comes to 75K in extra revenues. But if C moves, the state loses 65K, and the county loses another 28K. So to make up for C’s loss, it would require A, B, D, E, and F to remain and pay. Now you are only 10K to the good at the state level, and behind overall due to the loss of county revenue. And if C was a much higher earner than A, B and D, then the loss is that much greater.

    On a per capita basis, C’s loss is 16.6% of the total cohort, not far from the 12% in the comptroller study (and I tend to believe the comptroller).

    Now, why is it likely to be closer to 12% on the expat number? Now you may know different, but I don’t think mortality among MD millionaires was that high. Maybe 1-2 of the 12.5. That means 1 in 10 leaving the state; for what reason we can’t say (but some did to the Baltimore Sun, and it was over taxes). In fact, whatever the reason, 10% of a particular group getting up and leaving is significant, and goes way beyond normal migration. Unless you know different of course—search the liberal spin websites like ITEP’s some more and come up with a “fact” or two.

    Or not. Believe me, I want certain states like MD and NY to pass millionaire taxes, and if ITEP, Stiglitz, and plg convince them that its the right thing to do, I am all for it.

    Because it will only help NJ and VA.

  306. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [298] pgc

    would much rather you commented on #283. To me, that is the nut of it.

  307. Essex says:

    I am a simple man.

  308. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [313] essex,

    Me too.

    According to the editorial board of the NYT, and the regulars on MSNBC, I am an knuckle-dragging, brain-damaged, unejookated, in-bred, delusional, unbalanced, redneck nut job who shouldn’t be allowed to breed, let alone vote.

    Doesn’t get more simple than that.

  309. Shore Guy says:

    “, I am an knuckle-dragging, brain-damaged, unejookated, in-bred, delusional, unbalanced, redneck nut job who shouldn’t be allowed to breed, let alone vote”

    Wasn’t that a Willie Nelson song?

  310. Shore Guy says:

    Nom,

    I’d be happy to have that drink sometime.

  311. njescapee says:

    speaking of Willie Nelson, going to a Patsy Cline show tomorrow night at the San Carlos Institute. should be fun.

  312. Shore Guy says:

    Egads!!

    “Missing Woman Found Under Hotel Mattress in Memphis
    FOX News – 21 minutes ago
    Memphis authorities are baffled as to how a mother who disappeared in January ended up dead under a hotel mattress”

  313. grim says:

    Let there be time!

    Sorry folks, back from a trip to Nashville.

  314. Shore Guy says:

    Enjoy the show. There is nothing like live entertainment.

  315. grim says:

    Shore,

    Are you affiliated with ASCAP? Was at a singer/songwriter night down in TN last night.

  316. Mr Hyde says:

    Grim,

    are you referring to shore’s post at 318?

  317. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Now this is food for thought:

    “Mr. Lesperance, of course, has a business interest to promote. He is probably the top lawyer in the business of advising wealthy U.S. citizens on how to expatriate to lower-tax countries. . . .

    Yet, we can thank government for the fact that Mr. Lesperance’s business is booming. Last year he did 25 expatriations of wealthy U.S. citizens–more than the previous 18 years combined. His caseload this year is likely to push past 100 expatriations. . . .

    He says his clients net worth ranges from $10 million to the billions of dollars: “Many of these golden geese are nowhere near Wall Street, and in fact they’re the ones who lost a lot of money investing in AIG and other companies. If anyone should be mad it’s the golden geese.”

    /snip

    I follow expat numbers (they are published by the IRS) and there is typically a few hundred each year. Last year was a lot higher, with expatriations in the last quarter of 2009 5 times higher than the rest of the year.

    Now there is an exit tax, but he also gave us a hint about that. If these wealthy had lots of losses, that would offset the exit tax. So now is the perfect time; the tax is still 15% and there are losses to be taken.

    Finally, if his numbers are correct, they are chilling. Yes, 25 expats in one year is not much, but in the range he discussed, that is the loss equivalent of an entire average-sized town of low to moderate income taxpayers.

    I had posited that it would only take the loss of a few hundred wealthy in the top 1% to put a serious dent in income tax revenues. This attorney may account for that number all by himself. And there are others out there.

  318. Shore Guy says:

    Welcome back

  319. Shore Guy says:

    Grim,

    Yes, I am a member ofASCAP.

    What did you see?

  320. Shore Guy says:

    The NY Songwriters Circle does similar events. I have posted the dates and locations from time to time.

  321. njescapee says:

    Grim / Shore, We have the annual Key West Songwriter’s festival. Lots of Nashville talent. http://www.kwswf.com/show-schedule.htm

  322. Shore Guy says:

    Sounds like it may be worth a trip at some point.

  323. Shore Guy says:

    Of course, any tax-free trip has a certain appeal.

  324. njescapee says:

    Shore, here’s a very really good keylime keylime margarita recipe to get you and Mrs Shore in the mood.

    2 parts tequila
    1 part keke’s key lime liqueur
    4 parts sweet and sour bar mix
    shake with plenty of ice and pour
    top with a twist of lime

  325. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Sign of things to come???

    “BOSTON – The Massachusetts treasurer said Tuesday that Congress will “threaten to wipe out the American economy within four years” if it adopts a health care overhaul modeled after the Bay State’s.

    Treasurer Timothy Cahill — a former Democrat running as an independent for governor — said the 2006 law has succeeded only because of huge subsidies and favorable regulatory changes from the federal government.

    “Who, exactly, is going to bail out the federal government if this plan goes national?” He asked.

    Cahill made his remarks after Gov. Deval Patrick, a Democrat, accused him and Republican gubernatorial candidate Charles Baker of being silent amid the ongoing health care debates.

    Cahill said he’s called for the state to abandon its plan, and for the federal government not to match it.

    He also gave reporters a copy of a state ledger sheet showing the state’s Medicaid program ballooning from $7.5 billion to a projected $9.2 billion since the health care law was adopted. Of the 407,000 newly insured, only 32 percent paid for insurance wholly on their own.

    The remaining received partial or total taxpayer subsidies.

    Michael Widmer, president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, rejected Cahill’s analysis, saying health care costs in Massachusetts have been “well within the projections at the time the law was passed.”

    “Increases in Medicaid spending have been a problem for the state for years, but health reform has added very little to the problem,” Widmer said.

    He agreed, however, that the state has relied on additional federal money and that the costs of a national health care program would be more challenging than the state law.

    Patrick administration spokesman Juan Martinez said the state should be focused instead on reining in the rising cost of health care instead of proposing “cuts that would make it harder for many to get health care coverage.”

    Cahill didn’t back down, pointing out the Obama administration is asking the House and Senate to approve a national plan that includes an “individual mandate,” similar to Massachusetts’, and an entity designed to match buyers with private health insurance plans.

    Cahill said the Massachusetts equivalent, the Health Care Connector, had helped only 5 percent of those who bought private insurance without any type of government assistance.

    While the Massachusetts program has increased access to health insurance, he said it hasn’t cut underlying cost increases, steering more people to a broken system.

    “If President (Barack) Obama and the Democrats repeat the mistake of the health insurance reform adopted here in Massachusetts on a national level, they will threaten to wipe out the American economy within four years,” the treasurer said.

    Cahill’s comments came as the Patrick administration launched three days of hearings on rising health care costs. Insurance premiums in Massachusetts rose more than 12 percent over a two-year period.

    Patrick said the state has to come up with ways to ease the burden of soaring premiums on struggling businesses, individuals and families.

    “We have to stop the sharp annual rise in health care costs and find lasting solutions,” the governor said.

    At the hearing, Attorney General Martha Coakley released a study that found prices paid by health insurers to hospitals vary widely within the same geographic area and cannot be explained by the quality of care.

    She said most of the increase in health spending in the state is due to the higher costs those hospitals charge for services, not an increase in the number of services.

    In 2008, the price paid for a normal delivery ranged from just over $3,000 to nearly $9,000, according to the state Division of Health Care Finance and Policy. The highest price for a gastric-bypass procedure was more than seven times the lowest.

    Coakley said higher priced hospitals are gaining market share at the expense of lower-priced hospitals, raising the specter of a health care marketplace “dominated by very expensive ‘haves’ as the lower and more moderately priced ‘have-nots’ are forced to close or consolidate.”

    “Health care costs are increasing much faster than the growth of the economy, creating serious hardships for many individuals, families and businesses that are unable to keep pace with these rising costs,” Coakley said.

  326. Shore Guy says:

    When I get home I am going to print out the recipe. It sounds like it could be good.

  327. PGC says:

    Nom again with the DSA?

    Overall, where we differ comes down to a few simple concepts.

    1.4% may seem like a free ride but if you are on minimum wage, you are working a 57 hr week for $20k. If you are in a low cost of living state that might not be an issue, but as a sole wage earner in NJ that does not go far. If you want to go off down a rabbit hole on this discussion, let me know.

    From where you and I are politically, we differ most around progressive vs regressive taxes. That argument is going to rage and we are not going to solve it. You will continue to maintain that the $20K person is going to be tax negative even at 1.4% through EITC, food stamps etc. I will maintain that the deduction you get through tax exempt 401K, FSA and in short all the Bush tax cuts and things a tax attorney does best will have a bigger impact on the government revenue bottom line.

    For all the Flat Tax advocates out there. If you want it, there are consequences. Beyond that Flat is Regresive, Get ready for Negative Income Tax. Your AGI goes negative the government pays you. Clot start singing, the checks’ in the mail. Nom line your clients up, the Pinata will have been reloaded.

  328. PGC says:

    #317 Njescapee

    Enjoy, I grew up on all this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWCUh6tf7PA&feature=related

  329. Fabius Maximus says:

    After a lot of thought I came up with a new handle that can distinguish me from plg.

    PGC

  330. jamil van jones says:

    335: keep forgetting to change handle between posts?

  331. sas says:

    “Memphis authorities are baffled as to how a mother who disappeared in January ended up dead under a hotel mattress”

    are they knuckleheads out in Memphis?
    that mother had another line of work.

    down in memphis.. I’d say around $200/hr

    SAS

  332. leftwing says:

    “Many of those aides are assigned to work one on one with a special education student.”

    Looks like everyone is special.

  333. sas says:

    kettle1,

    what you think? should I go with the under counter reverse osmosis system or one of them kitchen tops distallation units for distilled water?

    I’m remodel the kitchen.

    looks nice.
    (oh yeah, I have a kitchen window over the sink, polycarbonate & lamanate).

    SAS

  334. Final Doom says:

    sas (337)-

    I’m waiting for the inevitable bizarre Memphis backstory on this one.

    It has to involve drugs, guns, not enough money to die for, a mean dog and some form of Satanic worship.

  335. Final Doom says:

    Back to watching Messi destroy Stuttgart.

  336. Fabius Maximus says:

    #336

    No.

    Despite repeated assertions that we are different people, albeit with similar political views, I still find I get called out for some of plgs posts. It will be easier of one of us moves their handle, I don’t mind being the one to do it.

  337. Shore Guy says:

    “t has to involve drugs, guns, not enough money to die for, a mean dog and some form of Satanic worship”

    I think that was an Alice Cooper song.

  338. chicagofinance says:

    310.plg says:
    March 17, 2010 at 6:39 pm
    Chicago, Just curious, is anyone who disagrees with you a troll?

    p: no, just a person with significant experience in employee benefits consulting….why not bring back RE101?

  339. plg and Jamail are the same poster says:

    Jamil, plg, RE 101 same person, or might as well be.

  340. Fabius Maximus says:

    #341 Final

    You go to Stuttgart to test drive Porsche’s, not to watch Football. If you are that close, go east and watch Bayren

  341. plg and Jamail are the same poster says:

    Chifi,

    Did you get over to Irish Central today?

  342. chicagofinance says:

    178.Final Doom says:
    March 17, 2010 at 11:58 am
    chi (175)-

    The discussions have become binary as more and more people realize it’s a zero-sum game.

    Should the zero-sum game devolve into one where the two outcomes are life or death?

    I ask that question in all seriousness

    doom: I think the most disheartening thing for you is that from a finance perspective, you work is conisdered “healing”. As a result, you are not the leading edge of doom, but rather the arsonist helping us clear out the overgrown hedges so we can replant…..you are an actor in the solution, even though you appear as the grim reaper….

  343. Shore Guy says:

    Oy!

    “Sheriff: Man Sold His Wife For Sex On Craigslist
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  344. chicagofinance says:

    347.plg and Jamail are the same poster says:
    March 17, 2010 at 10:57 pm
    Chifi,
    Did you get over to Irish Central today?

    I worked most of the day…someone in my office’s mother died, so we are in a bit of disarray….

  345. Shore Guy says:

    I know that I do not want or look forward to a collapse, nor could I have ever envisioned one before the recent mess but, man, given our headlong rush into debt and our political gridlock when it comes to addressing real and present dangers to the nation, I can see the possibility of the whole house of cards collapsing.

  346. Yikes says:

    Clot, have you seen Taken?

    was on one of the movie channels against tonight.

    i want that guy on my side when the shtf

  347. Yikes says:

    Current media-democract-education complex is about as far left as possible Bill Ayers, who was the head of local terror cell responsible for killing cops, judges and others, is now a big time education honcho, in charge of making US education, and textbooks, to be in line with his ideology. It is about time that some pro-american aspects are included in the curriculum as well, not just far left talking points.

    how far up Ru$h Limbaugh’s rear end to you have to go to find that garbage? I’ll give you an ‘A’ for effort but as usual, you’re a fountain of misinformation

  348. cobbler says:

    shore [351]
    Our gridlock is a result of irreconcilable differences between those who want this country to become Sweden and those who want it to become Columbia (I mean wealth distribution, not the level of violence). There are too few people in between to retain the societal tissue we’ve had for the last 60 years or so. To me, the most at fault here are the late 20th century innovations (sorry to sound like a Luddite) – Web and cable TV – which allowed people to not have to listen to those they don’t agree with.

  349. Stu says:

    Yikes,

    Please refer to my Jamil post generator for the source of that poor lads misinformation. Bill Ayers is back. Speak to any Vietnam vet and you will find that Bill Ayers is a hero to most of them. But what would Jamil know of real life. He only knows what Beck and Limblow tell him to know.

  350. sastry says:

    Yikes #4

    If school districts in Oregon (and by extension parents in that place) cannot spare a few extra bucks for costlier textbooks, then they deserve what they get.

    Sticking to one’s principles has costs (otherwise, everyone would be a saint). If the “liberal” Oregon school districts put money over common sense, then there is really no difference what the political affiliations are — they have the same boss, short term money.

    S

  351. sastry says:

    Nom/Shore:

    If we look at taxation over a longer period of time (a few generations), the income taxes for the wealthy (income wise) have been getting lower (from over 70% to 39%) — and they are close to zero if people invest “wisely” (cap gains taxed much lower).

    So, one argument that can be made is that the past generations of rich have made sacrifices (with very high taxes) and the new generation rich do not want to make any (with RR, GW, GOP, and Fox as their supporters). It probably won’t make a big difference now, but may mean that the divide between rich and poor becomes more and more stark.

    It would be like in India where Ambanis have a skyscraper mansion with a helipad in downtown area, and beggars roam around less than a mile away. The strength of US is financial mobility, and there is more slowdown as time goes on (discounting times of economic bubbles, which is more like a casino environment).

    S

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