…and cue bailout # 67 – The “Hardest Hit Fund”

And again our leaders confuse liquidity and solvency. You can’t fix a solvency problem with a liquidity solution.

A poorly run company has a cash flow problem, and can’t meet their debts. Their business model is busted, and they barely have enough income to operate, let alone pay down obligations. They come to you for a loan, and you ask “What for?”. If they tell you they are going to use your funds to help cover short term obligations, would you make the loan? Heck no you wouldn’t, because once that money runs out they are back to square one. That money wasn’t invested to grow the business, or otherwise that might actually result in increased earnings, lower operating costs, greater sales, etc.

Another scenario, a few years back, top of the bubble, poor credit and low income homeowner comes to you looking for a loan. It is clear that they the only way they can continue to afford their home and lifestyle is through extracting illusory equity from their home and piling on additional debt. They come to you for an additional $50k loan, not to make improvements on their home, but just to pay the credit card bills, mortgage, etc for the next few months, what do you tell them? Sure, this is a great investment.

Zero interest $50k loans to folks who can’t pay it back? What is the repayment schedule on this thing? Better be 15 years or longer, otherwise it isn’t getting paid back.

Whatever happened to saving for a rainy day? Having a “cushion” or “safety net” or otherwise to get through “the hard times”? Debt is the problem here, not the solution, so let’s take a set of people that can’t currently afford to service their debt, and saddle on more debt. I can’t wait for the first stories of new car purchases or iPads to hit the papers.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure there are a handful of borrowers that this kind of program would help. A set of folks with real earning potential, in demand skills, that will be able to pay it back when they find jobs again. You know, fiscally conservative, responsible. Sorry, I’m dreaming.

Where’s my pony?

From the Record:

$122M in mortgage aid headed to New Jersey

Staying out of foreclosure in this economy can be tough enough. Try keeping up with the mortgage after losing a paycheck.

To try to help prevent more defaults, the Obama administration Wednesday said will send $112 million to New Jersey to design a program to help unemployed homeowners stay in their homes while looking for work.

New Jersey is one of 17 states with persistently high unemployment rates to share $2 billion in funding through the program, dubbed the “Hardest Hit Fund.”

California will get the largest share of money for the Treasury program, at $476 million. Florida is in line for nearly $239 million. Illinois will receive $166 million and Ohio will receive $149 million.

New Jersey’s unemployment rate has remained above 9 percent in New Jersey for more than a year, though it inched down to 9.6 percent in June. Foreclosures slightly decreased in July, down 6.7 percent from the previous year, foreclosure data company RealtyTrac said today.

Also Wednesday the Obama administration said it would open up a program through the Department of Housing and Urban Development to provide zero-interest loans of up to $50,000 for homeowners, a program that was part of the financial regulatory bill passed last month.

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

125 Responses to …and cue bailout # 67 – The “Hardest Hit Fund”

  1. grim says:

    From the NYT:

    Debts Rise, and Go Unpaid, as Bust Erodes Home Equity

    During the great housing boom, homeowners nationwide borrowed a trillion dollars from banks, using the soaring value of their houses as security. Now the money has been spent and struggling borrowers are unable or unwilling to pay it back.

    The delinquency rate on home equity loans is higher than all other types of consumer loans, including auto loans, boat loans, personal loans and even bank cards like Visa and MasterCard, according to the American Bankers Association.

    Lenders say they are trying to recover some of that money but their success has been limited, in part because so many borrowers threaten bankruptcy and because the value of the homes, the collateral backing the loans, has often disappeared.

    The result is one of the paradoxes of the recession: the more money you borrowed, the less likely you will have to pay up.

    “When houses were doubling in value, mom and pop making $80,000 a year were taking out $300,000 home equity loans for new cars and boats,” said Christopher A. Combs, a real estate lawyer here, where the problem is especially pronounced. “Their chances are pretty good of walking away and not having the bank collect.”

  2. grim says:

    Although running the numbers on this one, it doesn’t appear that it is going to help a whole lot of folks.

    Assuming everyone maxes out the $50k over 2 years (~$2,100 over 24 months), a maximum of 2,440 will be helped by this ($122m / $50k).

    The support amount is a bit on the low side, and the length a bit too long, more realistic would be something like $3k a month over 12 months, for a total of $36k support. This would help 3,400 in NJ, a bit better.

    Hell, let’s just double it for good measure, 6,800 helped.

    In June 2010, there were 438,200 unemployed in NJ. Even with the doubled number, and significantly cutting back the unemployment support length ($2k per month for a total of 9 months, 18k total – 6,700 helped).

    Not to sound uncaring, but aren’t we already providing support for unemployed workers? Where is the support for unemployed renters? Why aren’t we offering them loans to pay the rent? Isn’t keeping a roof over their heads just as important?

  3. Juice Box says:

    Hoist!

  4. freedy says:

    so let me get this straight, if you work , if you produce something your f’d. better to stay home, do nothing, and wait for the interest free loan, s8, food stamps, free meds, health care, and who knows what other programs. what a country , oh, by the way 1 in 12 births is accounted for as an illegal. probably higher in New Jersey

  5. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:

    Grim,

    Agreed. Only people it helps is incumbent congress people who can hold up the press release and claim they did something to help joe sixpack. Yet another waste of money flushed down the toilet rather than facing the inevitable.

  6. yo'me says:

    You wanna help the unemployed? Make withrawals from 401k tax and penalty free while they are unemployed to support their family.Or atleast make it low tax rate.This makes more sense.

  7. Juice Box says:

    News this AM

    Stewardess throws Hissy Fit
    K-Rod gets a KO on the FIL
    30k trample each other to wait in line for 55 section 8 vouchers
    Woods trying to resurrect his career with fake drama
    40 yr old fat bastard arrested as the granddad bandit spent all the loot on Mayo,cheese and bacon
    sandwiches.
    Dens kiss Rangels fat ass at his Bday party

  8. Final Doom says:

    Methinks it’s time to default on the mortgage for my home.

  9. renter says:

    Who cares about holding on another year to your house! We need to produce and create so we can have a real economy.

    My cousin was laid off a year ago on her 10th anniversary with the company. It is demoralizing to be unable to find a job. It breaks my heart to see this.

  10. Final Doom says:

    Whoops! I’m self-employed, so even if I don’t have any work, no job has been lost.

    According to BLS, self-employed people don’t even exist.

    The gubmint despises self-employed people and is doing everything possible to destroy us.

  11. Final Doom says:

    The Hardest Hit Fund is only a good deal for the banks. All that money will get cycled right into their coffers.

  12. stan says:

    Story in the post this a m how the new ny tobacco tax has not shown any significant increase in revenue. Everyone is buying across their closest border or on indian reservations.

    Another foolish plan

  13. dim says:

    grim: Not to sound uncaring, but aren’t we already providing support for unemployed workers? Where is the support for unemployed renters? Why aren’t we offering them loans to pay the rent? Isn’t keeping a roof over their heads just as important?

    I’m not policy wonk, but I think this is because the real “customer” served by the proposal isn’t an unemployed person, but the institutions holding the mortgages or their securitizations on their books.

    50k “loans” to help unemployed homeowners sounds a hell of a lot better than the equivalent poured directly into the fannies/banks. But they’re doing that too.

    Some of these policies sound so ill-formed and incomplete because the supposed purpose is just a PR veneer. The giveaway is whenever they say they’re just handing to the states to “design” whatever. Sounds like a lazy approach to policymaking (i.e., their JOB) to me.

  14. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    dim [15],

    Bingo. It has nothing to do with the umemployed individual. It’s freeze time for the banks, hoping and praying that if they delay long enough, the economy will come back.

    Sushi, anyone?

  15. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    unemployed

  16. Painhrtz says:

    SAS3 from yesterday my Indian liberal friend I think you have seen enough of my post to reaklize I think Bush is a moron. they are all idiots. You liberal demagogy of the Dems is borderline comical. If you want to live in a socialist Utopia move to Cuba. the weather is nicer and I’m sure they will let you look at the website. Me on the other hand, I would like to return to small government that does not intrud eon every part of my life, especially with taxes and a giant military.

  17. SG says:

    Freddie Mac Economist Finds Growing Investor Preference for Hard Cash

    In Freddie Mac’s report, “Where Have All the Originations Gone?” released Wednesday, the government sponsored entity (GSE) said that 25% of 2010 existing home sales are all-cash transactions. This proves to be a growing trend in home buying as the percentage of cash transactions was between 5% and 10% just a few years ago.

    Cutts said the facts that GSEs like Freddie Mac are “the only game in town” when it comes to originating investor loans and that the private label investment sector is “pretty much dead,” prompts investors to see a larger cash flow from investing directly into real estate. She believes this is especially true when comparing investment yield from a cash home purchase to investment in Treasury bonds and the stock market.

    “Given how weak home sales are to begin with, this is very important right now,” she said. “It supports what little sales we have.”

  18. Cindy says:

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/38671032

    Elizabeth – Basically continuing to be a thorn in Timmy’s side.

  19. relo says:

    David A. Rosenberg
    Chief Economist & Strategist

    Instead of declaring an outright war on unemployment, we instead have a government bent on measures to boost spending on cars and homes that nobody really wants since, at the margin, all people want to do is boost their once-depleted savings rates and get out of debt; or at least a half dozen housing plans to help distressed mortgage borrowers. Or infrastructure spending that so far seems to have helped line the pockets of public sector union officials with no obvious payback in terms of job creation. At least FDR paid people to work, even if it meant skyscrapers, bridges, monuments and national parks. They didn’t get paid do sit idle for 99 weeks so they can then drop out of the labour force and into oblivion (almost 45% of the unemployed have been so for more than 26 weeks — in no other recession in the past six decades did this share ever cross above 26%).

  20. Cindy says:

    Relo @ 23 – Loved that – can you post a link? Thanks

  21. grim says:

    Jobless claims damn ugly this morning.

  22. dim says:

    They’ve managed to make it disheartening to be an employed renter in this economy.

  23. grim says:

    Serves you right for being prudent and responsible.

    Sucker.

  24. spyderjacks says:

    18:Pain – I keep hearing the same lament from my neocon buddies, that “small government” is the answer to all our problems. When did this small government exist, in US history, that you rally around? The one that meets your criteria of low taxes and small military?

    And if not the US, then what country, on this planet, is practicing this desired fiscal control?

    I look at it this way: This US of A is the best thing going and I pay dearly for the privilege of living and working here. But if there is something else better – I’d change horses. Just let me know who does it.

  25. relo says:

    Cindy,

    You can access via the below.

    http://www.gluskinsheff.com/

  26. Cindy says:

    Thank you Relo @ 30.

  27. Smathers says:

    Oh come on. It’s easy to make money know if you want.

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/38670867

  28. Smathers says:

    What a day for a rally at the DJIA. I can smell it in the air.

    I think I’ll call up the realtor. There’ll be lots of bonuses come December. Better get in the market now. Never been a better time to buy. Might buy my wife a new American car while we’re at it.

  29. Cindy says:

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/38673166

    The number of people filing new claims for unemployment insurance UNEXPECTEDLY rose….

    Yesterday – Bloomberg – U.S. Trade Deficit UNEXPECTEDLY Widens to $49.9 Billion in June

    When are these dudes going to get with the program and expect something…anything…..

  30. Smathers says:

    I love the smell of napalm in the morning.

  31. Final Doom says:

    spyder (29)-

    Chile’s debt is 6% of its GDP.

  32. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “Never been a better time to buy”

    [33],

    That’s what my listing agent told the bag holder, who bid 50K over asking for my pos in 9/05.

  33. Final Doom says:

    I find solace in knowing that in the near future, I’ll be waking up in the morning, and instead of coming here, I’ll be grabbing my weapon and inspecting the perimeter.

    Then, I’ll come here.

  34. Final Doom says:

    And you thought Bojangles was the guy in charge.

    “In an interview with the FT, Pimco’s Bill Gross flatly warned the government, in advance the housing finance conference that will begin deciding the fate of the GSEs next Tuesday, that unless Fannie and Freddie bonds retain their government guarantees, he would cease purchasing GSE debt. On the other hand, Gross may have overplayed his card: he already took the government for the proverbial ride, loading up the flagship TRS fund with GSE debt in early 2009 and riding the surge higher for the entire year, then selling virtually everything: TRS has just 16% of its $234 billion in AUM in mortgage securities as per the latest Pimco Fund update. Nonetheless, the Newport Beach bond pundit’s warning is a clear shot across the bow indicating just who is the primary force in GSE decision-making, right after the Treserve.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/bill-gross-issues-ultimatum-gses-keep-government-guarantee-or-else

  35. sas3 says:

    Pain,

    I think there is no party in US that subscribes to your ideals of small and lean govt. Not in the last few decades. So, you are just dreaming. Teabaggers don’t count since they are only hot air, and do not offer concrete proposals for cutting spending — they will never go out and say “cut military by X%” or “close tax loopholes for companies that offshore US jobs”.

    I just think the GOP is a much worse alternative than the dems, and all this “tyranny” talk is simply BS, especially after erosion of personal freedoms in W’s term; an unnecessary war; etc.

    Are the current crop of dems close to a decent govt? Far from it. However, the alternatives are horrible.

    S

  36. Libtard says:

    sas3…it’s simply too late. Bin Laden was right. He need not attack again. We will simply bankrupt ourselves, regardless of which party is in office. The social platforms offered by each party is simply the sideshow to the same main attraction.

  37. Libtard says:

    To favor one party over the other is like giving support to the rapist rather than the child molester. I choose to support neither. You should as well.

  38. Painhrtz says:

    SAS3 and that is the kind of thinking that has entrenched these corrupt, bought and paid for government pigs for years. Why are there no term limits? Because they have to vote on it. Why are they in washington 9 months out of the year when they do not have to be? Why are lobbyists not kicked from Washington? We all know the answers, but no one in the populace has the balls to stand up to them. It is a scam perpetuated by the laziness and sloth of the American people. Hell I usually vote libertarian or independent based on the running monkey’s platform. Occasionally, I have voted democrat or republican based on how well they fit into what you consider my narrow view. Unfortunately once they get to DC they are corrupted into the machine just like everyone else. Labels (democrat/republican) are for the small minded, due to the fact that it enables them not to think. We are an inherently social animal and like belonging to tribes.

  39. Painhrtz says:

    Lib, that might be the best anaolgy on here in a while and really fits the US government

  40. sas3 says:

    Lib, the alternative of someone like Doom wanting to burn the MF down isn’t a practical option too :)

    Welcome to the type of corruption seen in 3rd world countries like India. US is far from it, but we’ll know the day has arrived if we are stopped for a traffic violation and know that there is a big discount (and no points) if you pay with cash on the spot and not demand a receipt.

    I hope that we won’t see that happen in our lifetime…

  41. Libtard says:

    “Welcome to the type of corruption seen in 3rd world countries like India. US is far from it, but we’ll know the day has arrived if we are stopped for a traffic violation and know that there is a big discount (and no points) if you pay with cash on the spot and not demand a receipt.”

    In Montclair they did a huge yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk sting funded by a state grant this Spring.

    In exchange for the removal of the 2 points and a guilty plea, you could pay triple the original fine. Nearly everyone of the over 500 guilty drivers paid triple. Are we that far away?

  42. Final Doom says:

    Stu (41)-

    True. The real disheartening thing about 9/11 and its aftermath is that OBL was right about us.

    We are a degenerate, corrupt society that is coming to an end…by our own hand.

  43. Anon E. Moose says:

    Lib[46];

    Same with any NJ traffic ticket. I got a ‘Reckless Operation” ticket from an off-duty Edison cop in a Lexus SUV (no, we’re not paying the cops too much). Guilty plea was 2 pts and $100 fine, the ‘deal’ was no points and a $300 fine. That’s not a plea bargain, that’s a bribe. I made them try the ticket (guilty, nach) and paid the $100. I figure between the cop’s overtime and court overhead, they lost money. Would that more did the same.

  44. Final Doom says:

    pain (43)-

    The only vote left that matters is voting with a bullet.

  45. Final Doom says:

    I’m amazed by how many people post here who believe that all-out chaos is such a remote possibility in this country.

    Brush up on your history, folks. We’ve had a civil war, suspension of habaeus corpus and an army firing upon unionized workers.

  46. Final Doom says:

    …not to mention concentration camps and enforced slave labor.

    In the 20th century, not just the 19th.

  47. relo says:

    I’ve been reading this blog too much. Last night I dreamt the house was being overrun by zombies, woke up in a panic and got up to check the windows in the basement. Good times.

  48. relo says:

    49: COC is at the Starland soon. You can hear it live. GTG?

  49. Juice Box says:

    re: #39 – Doom – Perhaps it is time to start a new Death Pool just include anyone that is against the administration.

  50. Final Doom says:

    juice (54)-

    What? No autopsy on Matt Simmons?

    Quelle chance.

  51. Final Doom says:

    relo (53)-

    I don’t think I fit the profile of their fan base.

  52. Juice Box says:

    re: #55 – Doom dunno about that one old geezers should not be hanging out in the Hot Tub after guzzling a few Bourbons or Scotch. Simmons was part of the CFR if they wanted him silent he would have been.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Council_on_Foreign_Relations

  53. Final Doom says:

    At least with this administration, their enemies end up dead. With the Clintons, it was their friends.

    I still maintain that if Hillary had a set, she’d have whacked Vince Foster herself. Why leave the tough jobs to underlings?

  54. relo says:

    53: Ha, nor do I, but for the fact that I haven’t outgrown the whole metal thing.

  55. Final Doom says:

    juice (57)-

    Hot tubbing after swilling whiskey is my definition of exercise.

  56. sas3 says:

    Lib #46, Anon #48…

    Had the same thing with a speeding ticket. Was going to contest and eventually the prose-critter reduced the fine from 500 to 350 … would have been more straightforward to just pay the ticket.

  57. freedy says:

    has anybody seen the new 60million Overpeck Park in BC. ??

  58. Smathers says:

    40. Sas3

    Alas, you are right. It’ll be worse under the next Republican. Remember when Bush took over? We had a boom based on eyeballs that had crashed, but at least it was based on some reality, e.g. the development of an entirely new industry. Wars were these biblical things that pilots fought from above, throwing some bombs down on the creeps, and then flew back home to play the Nintendo with the kids. Obama’s screwed up, but we aren’t launching nukes over Beijing yet.

  59. Fabius Maximus says:

    #42 Stupo

    There is a better analogy from a Boston baseball writer. When asked to pick a team for the Subway Series in 2000, came out with.

    “I have to go with the Mets, they only shot my dog once!”

  60. Fabius Maximus says:

    Apologies, “Stupo” was a typo, that comes out with a different meaning than the one intended.

  61. wtf says:

    (42) “To favor one party over the other is like giving support to the rapist rather than the child molester.”
    ——————————————————————–
    Bad analogy. More like the difference between a guy who mugs you (Democrats) and a guy who mugs you then shoots you in the leg (Republicans).

  62. Final Doom says:

    Were I presented with a Dem and a Rep to shoot, I would shoot both between the eyes.

  63. Juice Box says:

    Mentioned this morning.

    Snip —> “Offering applications for the first time since 2002, East Point Housing Authority officials had triple the crowd they anticipated, and one that was three-fourths of the 40,000 population of the south Fulton city.”

    3/4ths of this whole city wants a section 8 voucher?

    http://www.ajc.com/news/atlanta/housing-crisis-reaches-full-589653.html

  64. dan says:

    Relo,

    How do you know she wasn’t the one that whacked him?

  65. relo says:

    70: Huh, who?

  66. Anon E. Moose says:

    Given the federal government’s latest bailout of the teachers’ unions via the states, can we finally admit that working for a public school is just a glorified welfare job? There is no demand for it from the public – witness the most recent round of school district budget votes (the ultimate effectiveness of which was nil, but it amply demonstrates the temperature of the electorate). So the leaders’ solution is to fund it from the (empty) tax coffers, rather than begin layoffs as many private sector business have done. Its a shame that the profession has been debased by hitching its wagon to one political party.

  67. hughesrep says:

    Given the governments latest bailouts of the banks, can we finally admit that working for a bank is just a glorified welfare job? There is no demand for it from the public- witness the most recent mortagage applications. So the leaders solution was to fund them from (empty) tax coffers, rather than let them fail as mny private sector businesses have done. It’s a shame that the profession has been debased by hitching its wagon to both political parties.

  68. Libtard says:

    Thanks Hughesrep. It was what I was thinking, but couldn’t figure out a good way to say it.

    Neither the public sector nor the banks should have been bailed. If the revenues be down, the bank goes under and the size of government should be reduced. Instead, we simply raised taxes in our future to enable banks and public sector workers to F up again, either by making stupid loans, or by having their unions approve unsustainable benefits in exchange for their vote.

    Can’t we just let the market be the market?

  69. sas3 says:

    I think understand the climate is against teachers… but… calling it a welfare job is ridiculous? If the good teachers are fired (usually young and driven ones will be the ones to be let go since they are not yet tenured; and no one can touch the “manager positions”), they cannot be easily hired when the economy improves (slow turn around times). I would push for pay cuts rather than firing people — just as a struggling small company would do.

    Of course, this all, assuming that people here can concede that a “good public school teacher” can exist…

  70. sas3 says:

    Hughes, blasphemy! Bonus contracts written in secret are sacrosanct even after the company goes bankrupt! Publicly approved union contracts aren’t. Four legs bad, two legs good!

  71. Libtard says:

    Sas3,

    Revenues are the key, regardless of what the contracts say. If your union promises more than the revenue stream can afford, well lay off enough public sector workers until the contractual demands are met.

    This is how it works in the private sector as well. How many public sector workers are working two full-time jobs at 12% less, with all benefits stripped away. None that I know of. It’s not my fault that the economy tanked and my employer is now 40% smaller than it used to be. Why should teachers, cops, and firemen be treated differently? If the teachers, cops and firemen were ‘for the children’, they would truly do what it takes (accept pay and benefit cuts) to keep more of their union members working. Instead, the union leadership is simply as selfish as the dues payers. Both want to make as much as possible until there are no public sector workers left working. Sorry Essex, but this is the ‘real’ deal.

    There are plenty of qualified private sector workers recently terminated who would be more than willing to work at public sector wages with their gold-plated bennies, which are supposedly so much less than their private sector counterparts. If that’s the case, then try to find a job in the private sector if the grass is so much greener on the other side.

  72. sas3 says:

    Lib, they should drop the hammer at the next contract negotiations — caps on salaries, especially for tenured people, 401k type pension plans, etc. The young ones will take the jobs, the old f@rts will bitch and moan. Some pay cuts when times are tough (though I cannot visualize how they can be paid a lot more when times are good — it would be fun to watch that budget fight).

    The best way to get to a 3% wage cut is to start with a 5% cut or 10% cut proposal. Not by starting with, “all teachers are leeches and are enemies of America”!

  73. Fabius Maximus says:

    #63 Smathers

    The GOP is crisis at the moment. The implosion is ugly and it may be 2020 before you see a chance of a Republican president. The GOP primaries are throwing out moderates and putting wingnuts up in November. Their only real hope at this point is if they take a complete a$$ pouning in November that allows them to tamp down the wingnuts and regroup.

    Michael Steele has resigned himself to the role of Novembers scapegoat and is on a glorified book tour. When he goes, I can’t wait for his memoirs to come out. I would think he would release them just before the 2012 primaries for maximum impact and to dig the knife in for a bit of payback.
    Come November, the biggest fight the GOP leadership has, is to stop the swing to the severe right or the party splits.

  74. sas3 says:

    Fabius, since the GOP doesn’t have an influential leader. Old teabaggers may drive Fox News to #1 in ratings, but can’t deliver a president for GOP. Of course, dems may still be able to nominate someone like Gore or Kerry and end up effectively throwing the election…

  75. JournoList Admin says:

    “The number of people filing new claims for unemployment insurance UNEXPECTEDLY rose….”

    Journolist Vocabulary 1.0 (aka New York Times NewSpeak 2.0):

    UNEXPECTED: Any negative news on the policies of Barak Hussein Obama or the Left.
    RACIST: Any person or entity opposed to the policies of Barak Hussein Obama or the Left.
    IDIOT: See Racist.
    EXTREMIST: The 75% of population that opposes sozialism, illegal immigration, and high taxes. See also Racist.

    Further talking points delivered later today.

  76. Fabius Maximus says:

    #72 Anon

    As with last year, most of that cash will go to the cops.

  77. sas3 says:

    The wingnuts anti-muslim and anti-mexican rhetoric is getting a bit alarming.

    The latest: they are attacking the Obama Administration for including the “Ground Zero Mosque” Imam in a speaking tour in the Middle East. Only one problem: the Bush Administration did the exact same thing with the exact same Imam.

    I fear the Saudi masters of Faux are actually salivating at an US-Islam conflict, since it will deflect the anger in their countries against their repressive policies.

  78. Ben says:

    Nouriel Roubini’s forecasts are based on how much information he can extract out of Nassim Taleb. He tried making his own predictions for all of 2009 and was god awful. Not coincidentally, Nassim Taleb was laying low that whole year.

  79. Final Doom says:

    sastry (78)-

    The only way to cut off the leeches is to declare municipal bankruptcy. They will vote for their corrupt political benefactors and continue to siphon the public coffers until fire is met with fire.

  80. Final Doom says:

    Did we let the Japanese build a Shinto shrine at Pearl Harbor?

    Muslims took down two buildings in NYC and committed mass murder. Maybe the cadre that did it is a part of a cult that “hijacked” the religion for their own horrible purposes. However, mainstream Islam has done precious little to reclaim the religion from these nuts. Until they do, they remain the enemy.

    Almost as big an enemy as our own gubmint.

  81. Final Doom says:

    Let’s airburst a few megatons over Teheran, then go in and build a church.

  82. Barbara says:

    85.
    correct. municipal bankruptcy is an exciting possibility

  83. dim says:

    #86: No, but we did round up American citizens who were Japanese and put them into camps. Overreacting to the degree that we lose sight of or betray the greatest aspects of our country is perhaps the worst possible outcome.

  84. sas3 says:

    Doom, kill the same freedoms we have that “they” hate us for?

    Stop/demolish all churches because “they” (gasp!) “raped” our children?

  85. House Whine says:

    Back to #10 Renter posting:- Just got back from work- I have been at my new job a few months now. I was unemployed, on and off, for about a year. Best of luck to your cousin. Believe me your cousin needs to know you care. I still can tick off the names of friends, relatives, etc. who offered me a kind word or job leads. It really does help. I love getting a paycheck again, but I also love having structure and a reason to get up in the morning. If you know of people who are unemployed send them job leads, even if you think they won’t be interested. You never know where it will lead them.

  86. Outofstater says:

    Radical Islam wants me dead. I would rather they die first.

  87. Final Doom says:

    sastry (90)-

    Sometimes, an enemy is just an enemy.

    Kill them, before they kill us.

  88. Final Doom says:

    You don’t let enemies build monuments at the spot where they attacked you.

    WHy is this such a difficult concept to grasp? Have we become that soft and co-opted by self-loathing?

  89. nj escapee says:

    Doom, you might as well talk to the wall. sorry man

  90. Final Doom says:

    OTOH, it would be kinda fun to see that mosque turned into a rubble pile.

    Which would likely happen in less than a year.

  91. Final Doom says:

    Mossad should give themselves a fun little task by assigning a hit squad to cap this “imam” who’s getting flown around the planet on our gubmint’s dime to raise awareness and funds for his religion’s big eff-you at Ground Zero.

    It would be fun to hear these animals squeal in victimhood.

  92. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “Doom, you might as well talk to the wall. sorry man”

    No disrespect meant, towards the wall.

  93. sas3 says:

    #98, #95… You guys advocate violence against American Muslims? Doom is a nice guy that makes weird posts, but what about you guys?

  94. Final Doom says:

    sastry (99)-

    You think Farrakhan’s crew wouldn’t cut your throat just for giggles?

    Don’t worry, Sastry. Most American Muslims don’t have the guts to actually join in the fight. They just secretly cheer when the nutjobs have a good day.

  95. sas3 says:

    Doom #90,

    “Sometimes, an enemy is just an enemy.”

    Except, twenty years ago, they were close friends that the CIA gave a lot of money and military training to, and whose family vacationed at the “Mansion”!

    FWIW, JC was the enemy of Romans for 300+ years till he became the only Savior…

    Expand the time frame long enough and religion and international politics are just like friendships among middle school brats.

  96. sas3 says:

    Doom, I think when the SHTF, there will always be someone that will cut my throat if it suits them. Just a matter of how bad the situation is. All of us have evil in us, and it is a matter of the threshold at which it will emerge. For all practical purposes, most of us are in a safe zone by a decent margin, but… if New Orleans can completely degrade in under a week, what chance does any place have if something really bad were to happen?

    Be polite, but carry a gun. However, don’t just randomly fire the gun!

    My experience has been that the bigots don’t have b@lls to fight other bigots. They have enough courage to hurt innocents. If they simply fought each other, life would be wonderful for the rest of us.

  97. Qwerty says:

    sas3 reminds me of my 13-year-old niece; the endless stream of naivete is almost painful to witness.

  98. nj escapee says:

    sas3, I’m a guy who’s fed up with the nonsense and allowing a monument to islam to be built next to “ground zero” is beyond my ability to be civil. We should just close up shop and bring our kids home and to he-ll with the rest of the world. tell me, are you a good guy or just a shill for the demopugs.

  99. dim says:

    Invective directed only towards the enemy-of-the-day would be more constructively pointed to the real poison: religion of all kinds. Religion is the most convenient excuse for the scum of the earth to treat others without moral limits. We’d be better served to remove it from the equation and call what’s left by what it really is. Good folks are good no matter their faith, as will be the dregs.

    There should be no mosque at WTC. There should be no religious crap allowed of any kind.

    But not sure what this has to do with NJ RE. So I wonder. If we ever do enter a period of substantial deflation, would taxes go down?

  100. nj escapee says:

    dim, taxes always go up. didn’t you study fiziks. :-)

  101. dim says:

    Jeez. Taxes in NNJ are almost market-rate perpetual rent to the locality. How do people manage? Those who aren’t rich, that is. Well, comfortably rich, at least.

  102. sas3 says:

    njescapee, I think the mosque thing is partly a manufactured controversy designed to appeal to our bigotry. I think the dingbat from Alaska is milking this controversy, and, in a couple of decades, when the enemy is one of BRIC, this will be a non-issue. More construction, more jobs (and with the teabag nuts around, more security jobs), so all financial plus. Who cares what God they worship (even though it is the same God as the other two semitic religions).

  103. Confused in NJ says:

    My experience has been that the bigots don’t have b@lls to fight other bigots. They have enough courage to hurt innocents. If they simply fought each other, life would be wonderful for the rest of us.

    I have always found that the greatest bigots are those who call others bigots.

  104. Outofstater says:

    #103 Yep.

  105. nj escapee says:

    Confused, Amen!

  106. gary says:

    I wanna know one thing: is it still contained to subprime?

  107. nj escapee says:

    Dim, 107: that’s why I moved to Floreeda

  108. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    [2] grim

    Darn, and I was hoping to sop up some of that gravy.

  109. gary says:

    This is what November 3rd, 2010 is going to feel like for the Democr@ts:

    http://tinyurl.com/2axg6qu

  110. gary says:

    The day after… forgot to add…

  111. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    [13] stan

    “Story in the post this a m how the new ny tobacco tax has not shown any significant increase in revenue. . . ”

    Stan, deadweight loss is a tax policy myth perpetrated by conservatives to scare politicians into keeping taxes low. Ask any liberal.

    /sarc off

    Oh, and those same liberals told me last year that I was delusional for suggesting that government actions that increased the cost of labor would result in companies refusing to hire. Follow the news much?

    /now sarc off.

  112. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    [105] dim,

    So, you would agree that religion is an opiate for the masses?

  113. dim says:

    Opium is the opiate of the masses.

    Religion is an excuse of the asses.

    But not the only one. Just a convenient one. Partisanship of many kinds can suffice. Like politics. It does a good job of distracting us from the fact that we’re not served well by those we elect.

  114. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    [29] spyderjacks says:

    “This US of A is the best thing going and I pay dearly for the privilege of living and working here. But if there is something else better – I’d change horses. Just let me know who does it.”

    Depending on what you do and what you have (your “tax profile”), there may be something better. Increasing numbers are discovering this, and I am trying to make a practice out of making sure clients have a seat in the lifeboat. Because once you start hearing it debated on MSNBC, it’s too late.

  115. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    [119] dim

    “Like politics. It does a good job of distracting us from the fact that we’re not served well by those we elect.”

    Wasn’t that the same sentiment behind “religion is an opiate of the masses” when old Karl said it?

  116. Yikes says:

    NJGator says:
    August 11, 2010 at 9:47 pm

    Through the police blotter today, we discovered that our neighbors are not as bright as we gave them credit. Their kids (youngest is 4)sleep alone on the ground floor, they sleep upstairs. Burglars came in through an unlocked door on the ground floor.

    Do you think that the burglars are going around, house by house, simply looking for unlocked doors? Or had they been targeting these people? Either way, that’s terrifying.

  117. dim says:

    121: Sure, and he was/is right. But he was using that truth to sell a bad product. A tried and true sales technique, to be certain.

  118. Yikes says:

    Final Doom says:
    August 12, 2010 at 10:03 am

    I find solace in knowing that in the near future, I’ll be waking up in the morning, and instead of coming here, I’ll be grabbing my weapon and inspecting the perimeter.

    LMAO.
    Clot, admit this – you WANT to be wrong. you do not want that. you know it. none of us do.

  119. stan says:

    I usually just post when that idiot frank says hoboken is immune or there is something pertinent that I think most people who read these boards would find interesting.

    I do not believe clotpoll relishes where we are headed. I can and do seperate his posts and see the “real him” and the “where we are headed him”.

    That said, sas3, u are so effin naive, u remind me of my 18 year old sister n law who grew up in the sticks and has no real world experience. You shold name yourself pollyanna and die your hair blonde.

    I continue to come here because there is no left/right just normal successful people fed up with the current state, and they have given me some of the best real world advice I could have ever received. I realize how right they are when sas3 starts typing.

    That their are probably more of you out there voting scares me more than the right wing nuts…..