“Suzanne researched this, this listing is special”

From the NY Times:

One Town, but Two Markets

OVER the last six months or so, it seems several New Jersey towns have developed symptoms of split personality — at least when it comes to their real estate markets.

Take Montclair, for instance: the median sales price has been declining, as anyone can clearly see from looking at the downward pitch of the line graph updated weekly on many brokers’ Web pages by Altos Research. But decline means different things in different places. In the area often called Upper Montclair (ZIP code 07043), the descent to $615,000 from $700,000 was herky-jerky, up and down, between April 1 and the middle of September, according to Altos. But in the rest of town (ZIP code 07042), the median skied nonstop down a steep mountain: $700,000 all the way to $400,000.

Likewise, median prices harmonized in Millburn Township and its Short Hills section — another area with its own ZIP code — while clearly singing different parts. Millburn/Short Hills is one of the very few communities in the state where sales values are rising again, according to Karen Eastman Bigos, a broker with the Towne Realty Group.

The median for the township rose to $620,000 from $570,000 from April 1 to mid-September. Over the same period, the median for Short Hills rose to $1.6 million from $1.5 million. That means property in Short Hills escalated more in value — by about a percentage point — even though it is more than twice as expensive.

“How do we explain these things?” asked Ken Baris, the president of Jordan Baris Realty, a company that recently developed a “hyperlocal” computer system for analyzing price trends by school district or neighborhood. “Local, local, local — there is no other word but local in real estate.”

In Montclair, where there is a concerted emphasis on thinking of the town as one diverse whole — children are bused to “magnet” schools, and the moniker “Upper” is discouraged as divisive — several agents resisted comparisons of trends on the two sides of town.

“Sometimes people come in saying they only want to buy in the one ZIP code, 07043,” said Linda Grotenstein, an agent at Coldwell Banker. “I usually find they have a misunderstanding of what the ZIP codes imply.”

The housing stock is more homogeneous in the northern half: mostly well-groomed Victorians with three to six bedrooms. The south end has far greater range: everything from run-down, run-of-the-mill triplexes on narrow lots to peerless mansions on manicured grounds, in the “estate section.”

In fact, by Mr. Baris’s reckoning, the estate section in the southern part of Montclair has kept overall average sales value afloat. It had 42 listings this year, and 18 houses sold, at a median price of $1.218 million, 31 percent more than last year.

“If you took out the estate section,” Mr. Baris said, “Montclair would have depreciated as a town.”

In Millburn/Short Hills, Ms. Bigos ascribes the huge price disparity to the teardown craze that swept Short Hills starting in the late 1990s.

“That is when the spread started to widen,” said Ms. Bigos, a lifelong resident of Short Hills. “All the new houses going up doubled and tripled in value.”

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

154 Responses to “Suzanne researched this, this listing is special”

  1. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey And Happy Friday!

  2. grim says:

    From HousingWire:

    FHFA: Home prices hit 2004 levels

    House prices inched higher in July, but are down 3.3% for the year ended July 31 and 18.4% lower than the April 2007 peak, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

    The regulator, which holds Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in conservatorship, said July home prices increased 0.8% and are at levels last seen in March 2004. The agency lowered June’s gain to 0.7% from a previously reported 0.9% increase.

  3. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Reports Fault Regulator of Fannie, Freddie

    Regulators don’t have enough examiners for mortgage-finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and have struggled at times to develop risk controls for the companies, according to two reports to be released Friday by the inspector general of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

    One of the reports implied that better risk controls at Fannie Mae could have helped avoid potential foreclosure abuses that erupted into public view a year ago, forcing banks to slow down and revamp their mortgage-handling processes.

    The inspector general reached that conclusion because it said Fannie missed deadlines set by its regulator, the FHFA, to implement an operational risk-management program. Those failures, it added, had potentially prevented the company from addressing problems identified in an internal Fannie review from 2006 on potential foreclosure abuses by law firms that handle foreclosures.

    The FHFA disagreed with some of the inspector general’s findings and allegations.

    But in Friday’s report, the inspector general said the FHFA had found no evidence that the company had made any improvements in its oversight of law firms as a result of the internal review. It also said that regulators weren’t aware of the 2006 report until earlier this year.

    “Fannie Mae’s failure to implement an effective and acceptable operational risk program may represent a missed opportunity to detect—and possibly to prevent—foreclosure abuses,” said Steve Linick, inspector general of the agency, in a statement.

    The FHFA disputed the inspector general’s central claim: that more effective risk controls would have avoided potential foreclosure abuses. “An effective operational risk program would not have prevented servicing personnel and licensed attorneys from engaging in improper, unethical or fraudulent practices,” the agency wrote in its response.

    A second report by the inspector general said that the FHFA’s staff shortages have hindered its ability to complete examinations. For example, the agency hasn’t completed a thorough examination of Fannie and Freddie’s processes for managing foreclosed properties, which have swelled sharply as mortgage defaults mount. It didn’t complete an examination of the law firms that Fannie and Freddie rely on to process foreclosures until late 2010, the report said.

  4. Only the idiot collectivists who live there have a misunderstanding of the implications of the 07043 zip code. Believe me, when the going gets hairy, you’ll see a broken glass-encrusted wall go up around it. Some animals are more equal than others.

    “Sometimes people come in saying they only want to buy in the one ZIP code, 07043,” said Linda Grotenstein, an agent at Coldwell Banker. “I usually find they have a misunderstanding of what the ZIP codes imply.”

  5. 07043 will end up looking like Pablo Escobar’s compound.

  6. yo'me says:

    Is it becoming a white collar zip code holding value and the blue collared towns loosing values?It is been told the blue collar workers are the ones hurting in this economy.

  7. gary says:

    I read this article above and the realtors’ response to a logical explanation of the disparity in price trends reminded me of Sling Blade Carl, Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man and Forrest Gump combined.

  8. gary says:

    Ya gets some of those french friend pertaters when you buy this home, mmm hmmm!

  9. grim says:

    I really just don’t get this hyperlocal message trend.

    Are realtors really trying to say that all data is misleading, shouldn’t be trusted? Instead only a realtor can help you through this quagmire?

    Pay no attention to the hard numbers, this one is special, bucks the trend, it is different here.

  10. grim says:

    Relative desirability of neighborhoods, home price variations, are nothing new here, if anything was ever different, it was that buyers disregarded these things during the bubble.

  11. Shore Guy says:

    Freedy,

    I long ago concluded that the first step necessary to improve our representation and to get rid of the current crop of awful politicians is to eliminate pensions for all elected offices — except the president, given the odd nature of that job.

  12. Shore Guy says:

    Whether the band plays on or not, I suspect Bruce will keep touring until the day he can’t. That being the case, I don’t imagine that the other members of the band would want to forgo the opportunity to earn more retirement income. It is not like the radio is abuzz with classic rock and roll anymore and even Nils plays only small venues as a solo artist. I wouldn’t mind seeing the Disciples of Soul out and about but, from an income perspective, a DoS tour will not provide for the “golden years.”

  13. Shore Guy says:

    Re. Bruce, from the Onion:

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/bruce-springsteen-releases-new-scifi-concept-album,21358/

    RUMSON, NJ—After more than a year of writing and recording, Bruce Springsteen released his 18th studio album Tuesday, a concept record titled Red Dust that explores the everyday lives and struggles of immigrant workers scraping by in the 23rd-century carbonate mines on Mars.

    According to the 61-year-old songwriter, the new tracks depict rugged Martian colonists as they come to question what’s happened to their lives, finding themselves saddled with unpayable debts and hard-pressed to put food on the table for their embryonically harvested juvenile-clones.

    “These are songs about growing up on a tough planet,” said Springsteen, telling reporters that when the idea of humans and aliens working side by side in an extraterrestrial labor colony first occurred to him, he immediately knew he “had to tell their story.” “The Martians aren’t trying to run away from their lives or make excuses. They’re proud of what they do and where they’re from, even if the high-impact ion-compression carbonate mining industry isn’t what it used to be.

    “I try to write about universal feelings and desires,” Springsteen continued. “There’s tragedy, grief, redemption. But there’s also nostalgia for one’s carefree younger days of racing souped-up hyper-thrust cruisers through the Valles Marineris canyon, and for nights spent chasing Martian girls along the rusting boardwalks of a crater-side spaceport.”

    Springsteen explained that in addition to its stark, poignant portrait of a decaying futuristic mining colony, the album serves as a cautionary tale about the extinction of the galactic middle-class and functions, in itself, as a protest against the policies of a corrupt Planetary Federation that willfully neglects its poorest and neediest organisms.

    The album’s first single, a swaggering radio-ready stadium anthem called “Dead Man’s Home,” tells the tale of a construction worker drafted to fight in an unjust interstellar war, only to return disillusioned to his Martian hometown, where the ground is too frozen to bury the remains of friends killed by a burst of plasma shrapnel.

    Guitarist Steven Van Zandt said that while E Street Band members had reservations about the album’s concept, they were impressed with Springsteen’s earnestness when he explained how the miners had moved to the colony seeking a good, honest living and then had nowhere to turn once the Martian economy failed.

    “Frankly, we weren’t really sure what he was talking about,” said Van Zandt,

    snip

  14. 3B says:

    #7 yome: I am seeing the exact opposite.

  15. 3B says:

    #11 grim I said a few weeks ago that people will start to get desperate enough and say that on there block prices are not falling.

  16. Jason says:

    Housing prices for places like Montclair will continue to decline for years to come. Baby Boomers who comprise a significant portion of home ownership are becoming empty-nesters. Cost of ownership of large homes remain high (property taxes, utilities, etc.) They will be looking to cut expenses by downsizing. Problem is, most potential buyers in successive generations cannot afford such high costs, thus dampening demand, and continuing to push prices downward.

  17. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (16) shore

    That had me for a few seconds until I saw it was from da onion.

  18. 3B says:

    Looks like another ugly day in the markets.

  19. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    Bye bye stock market.

  20. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Shiny getting smacked again. Trigger finger getting itchy. Very glad I sold most shiny north of 1800, so tortured over whether to load up again.

  21. prtraders2000 says:

    Feature article reminded me of my 6th graders homework about averages. Mean, median, mode…. I explained to her that for certain measurements the median is more relevant as outliers in a sample can skew the mean. When you read the article they say that the decline has been “herky-jerky”. Leads me believe that on a monthly basis we are talking about a small sample and a term I learned here “mix shift”.

  22. make money says:

    Shiny getting smacked again. Trigger finger getting itchy. Very glad I sold most shiny north of 1800, so tortured over whether to load up again.

    What tortures you? If you’re concerned about timing dips then just buy “real” physical and watch it shiny everyday over the next decade.

  23. Happy Renter says:

    “Local, local, local — there is no other word but local in real estate.”

    I thought the only word on real estate was “buy, buy, buy!”

  24. NJGator says:

    Meat (4) – I find that it’s the people who want to move to Montclair for the “diversity” that are most likely to buy in 07043. They want to experience the “diversity” but they don’t want actually to live amongst it. They are then the first ones that b*tch the loudest when their child can’t attend their “neighborhood” school even though the magnet system is a “unique gem”.

    They are also the ones whose panties get in a bunch when Montclair HS or the town do not rank highly on some bogus list published by NJ Monthly. Even though they were attracted to Montclair by it’s “uniqueness”, they are outraged when the rest of the world does not acknowledge how “special” Montclair actually is.

  25. make money says:

    I bet Bergabe is stunned that the market reacted the way it did. The dopies want more heroin now or they’ll trash the place. If he doesn’t budge quickly and give them QE3 than our banks will sent eraser head in the dungeons and ask for TARP 2.0. That will be great theater.

    Also, is there anyone who is buying the 10yr at 1.7 that palns to hold it for 10 years and clip coupons? I don’t think so. They will all want to get out at some point and who is going to be on the other end of the trade then? Who is buying all this paper when that happens? If its the Fed don’t we dive right into inflation?

    Bergabe needs to create greed and force investors to demand a higher return from their money managers and NOT tell everyone that our economy has already entered another recession. Is this moron that stupid?

  26. NJGator says:

    Here’s a sale that helped bump up the 07043 numbers. $1M+ for a 57X121 piece of paradise.

    http://www.baristanet.com/2011/09/new-construction-on-montclairs-mt-vernon-fetches-over-a-million/

  27. homeboken says:

    Here is a nice house, priced at 2002 level, yet it’s on market for 200 days.

    This house in unsellable at any price due to the West Orange tax bill of just under $26,000 per year.

    http://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/2-Allsop-Ct_West-Orange-Twp_NJ_07052_M59243-46613

  28. Juice Box says:

    FYI – I heard the margin desks are starting work really early these days.

  29. NJGator says:

    homeboken (30) – Taxes actually went down in the revaluation to $23,197. However I suspect that the average ratio for WO this year will be below 100% and these owners should file a tax appeal pronto. They could probably cut another $3k – $4k off of that.

  30. jamil says:

    Has anybody used the railroad from NYC to Paris? I may try that next time.

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2011/09/obama-gaffe-jobs-act-speech-brent-spence-bridge-ohio.html

    “We’re the country that built the Intercontinental Railroad,”
    Barack Obama, President of The United States

  31. homeboken says:

    Gator – Totally agree, but I think even at $20k per year in taxes, that house will languish because unless WO can figure out how to stabilize their tax base, you will be back at $26k within 7 years.

  32. 3B says:

    #29 Ummm Let me just say I think they over paid……way overpaid!!!

  33. Shore Guy says:

    Unless it goes from Alsaka to Russia, and Sara would NEVER allow THAT, or down through Panama and points south, the tunnel would really suck.

  34. Shore Guy says:

    It is interesting how often the press is reporting B.O. flubs and mischaracterizations. He is clearly out of favor — finally.

  35. 3B says:

    #27 My dear Ms. gator! I will have you knw that the NJ Monthly School Rankings is a holy book. Please treat it with respect.

  36. JCer says:

    20k for taxes on a 600k house? Thats insane, does WO have an eternal flame in the town hall where they burn property tax money? Anytime property taxes are more than 3%, which is very bad, I have to question what is going on in that town.

  37. NJGator says:

    JCer – The house is not even going to sell for $600k.

  38. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [31] Juice

    My concern is that the chart resembles a parabola. Of course, if the price of gold tanks that badly, it will be because of global economic recovery, and I would willingly take losses on shiny to have a much better economic environment.

  39. homeboken says:

    Gator – I was trying to run numbers yesterday to figure out what I would pay for that house (Assume the house is exactly what I want, so I just need to do the math). The best way I could figure was to capitalize the annual tax bill like you would on a commercial property expense analysis. Assume a $20,000 tax bill that never increases (yeah right) at a 7.5 cap rate, that equates to $266,000 in value destruction. Ergo, I would be willing to buy that house with the tax bill for about $300,000.

  40. Juice Box says:

    re: #38 – re: “out of favor”. The far left feel betrayed that BO is more GWB II than they could have ever fathomed when it comes to the wars, this is what I am hearing when anyone even bothers to talk 2012 elections. I ran into a family member a few weeks ago who was a big BO supporter, raised millions for his 2008 campaign. He is sitting this one out, will not even take a call from the DNC. Fact is he now seems to now be joining the right mainly because of the financial losses incurred on Al Gore’s pump n dump green energy schemes and he is not about to stand still for wealth redistribution, he is again picking up the flag and waiving it. I think he may back Romney.

  41. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Small biz owner on CNBC castigating Obama tax breaks as a “carb diet” and “no protein”.

    I have called it a sugar high. Glad to see I wasn’t alone.

    GOP should pass some parts now, and table tax stuff for general tax reform discussion. Dems should go along with that as they would get more leverage.

  42. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    CNBC Poll (incredibly unscientific, I’m sure) says that 2/3 of respondents think we will wind up in a depression.

    Those kind of numbers suggest self-fulfilling prophecy.

  43. JCer says:

    Gator, I’d pay ~600k for that house if the taxes were less than 15k, 26k is the mayor of west orange smoking crack and using tax money to buy it?

  44. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Mass political thought of the day:

    It occurs to me that not only are her politics simpatico, but if you were to call Central Casting for someone to play the role of Diana Moon Glampers, they’d send you Elizabeth Warren.

  45. make money says:

    homo[43],

    Excelent way of gaudging wealth destruction, however, you must deduct whatever the taxes were in 2002. Assuming the tax appeal brings them down between 15-19K. then it could be worth putting on the boots, offering $515K and then accepting their counter at $545K.

  46. homeboken says:

    Make – Good point, I should cap the tax rate increase since I can’t assume zero taxes. Doing it that way, a $465,000 price point makes sense. The real issue is what assumptions do you make for future tax increases? I can’t pin-point a growth rate that I have confidence in other than to say it is going up (which is useless)

  47. NJGator says:

    The effective tax rate for West Orange in 2010 was 2.95%. I’m guessing that number in 2011 is somewhat north of 3% and will for sure be over 3% in 2012. The adjusted tax rate for 2011 after the revaluation was 3.383%….I am assuming that they pegged the assessments to about 90% of market value which would leave you with an effective rate of 3.0447% for 2011.

    That’s almost double the effective tax rate for Millburn. And it’s significantly higher than Glen Ridge, a town with almost zero commerical ratables.

    http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/pdf/lpt/gtr10essex.pdf

    http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/pdf/lpt/gtr10essex.pdf

  48. NJGator says:

    And to get a 15k tax bill for that house, the assessment would need to be reduced to less than $450k. So it would need to sell for under $500k. The current assessment is $685,700.

  49. Bobby Sauerberg says:

    NJGator,

    Is there no work to do on your floor of the building?

  50. Chuck Townsend says:

    Bobby get in my office and clean the damm commode already and while you are at it
    make sure you pick up my dry cleaning before you come in to work. No more
    hour breaks to run out on errands!

  51. A.West says:

    30,
    Might be a nice house, but the location is bad. Nestled between a drainage area and a busy road. $26,000 taxes just adds insult to injury.

  52. Double Down says:

    “Here’s a sale that helped bump up the 07043 numbers. $1M+ for a 57X121 piece of paradise.”

    That house in a nice North Carolina neighborhood would cost $160,000. It’s fairly easy to land a six figure salary in North Carolina.

    This area is filled with brainwashed fools.

  53. young jersey guy says:

    For a 27 year old guy, is it worth staying in NJ or transferring positions within a company to Chicago? Anyone have experience with doing this? I realize the salary would be adjusted.

  54. gary says:

    RE: Obama Gaffes

    Yesterday at a speech, the Annointed One said, “Is it fair that Warren Buffet’s assistant pays “less” in taxes than Warren does?”

    He’s starting to stumble on his words to the point where he’s sounding like someone in a padded room rambling aimlessly. I don’t know where he got this image as a great speaker… he actually sucks when it comes to improvising. He’s like the character Spider in Goodfellas, he’s a stumbling, muttering little f*ck!

  55. make (28)-

    Bingo. All we can do now is sit back and watch the Fed turn itself into an even bigger financial garbage can than Phony/Fraudy could ever dream of becoming.

    Buyer of last resort? Welcome to buyer of first (and only) resort.

    This all ends in tears.

    “Also, is there anyone who is buying the 10yr at 1.7 that palns to hold it for 10 years and clip coupons? I don’t think so. They will all want to get out at some point and who is going to be on the other end of the trade then? Who is buying all this paper when that happens? If its the Fed don’t we dive right into inflation?”

  56. A.West says:

    Next step is for Bernanke to start mailing out checks straight from the Fed. Like a helicopter drop, but it also stimulates the postal service. That way it bypasses the official budget deficit. Krugman will remind him to put a short expiration date on the check to force people to spend it right away, and also make it illegal to deposit it into savings accounts, since savings is the enemy in Keynes-land.

  57. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [60] meat

    And if it dips lower????

  58. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Oh yeah, this is a sound bite you won’t see on MSNBC:

    “Top executives from a bankrupt California solar energy company have declined to testify before a congressional hearing investigating their half-billion dollar government loan.

    Solyndra CEO Brian Harrison and the company’s chief financial officer, Bill Stover, both invoked their Fifth Amendment right to decline to testify to avoid self-incrimination.

    Harrison told the House Energy and Commerce Committee Friday: “On advice of counsel, I respectfully decline to answer any questions.”

    Stover did the same. . . .”

  59. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    As I believe Mark Twain said, “there are lies, damn lies, and statistics.”

    Some accountants calling BS on Warren Buffett, and by extension, Dear Leader.

    http://www.theblaze.com/stories/warren-buffett-his-secretary-fuzzy-math-do-the-numbers-really-add-up/

    We don’t know the facts, and won’t unless Warren and his secretary release their returns, but there are two things NOT being reported in this dust-up: Whether the secretary has a spouse whose earnings put her in a higher tax bracket, or the effect (and we know it is pronounced) of charitable giving on Warren’s taxes. I raised one point in the past (marital income), but the accountants raised charitable giving, which Warren is doing famously.

    Might all that giving (which is above the line) have a significant effect on his taxes? I think we know the answer to that.

  60. yo'me says:

    As I understand the FED can destroy or sell the treasuries they are holding.Just like the treasuries bought from QE2 now that this matured they can basically destroy this bonds to get the currency off circulation,but decided to buy long term treasuries.We pay ourselves low interest and hold this debt for long term.The wonders of having domestic debt just like Japan.

  61. gary says:

    Nom [65],

    Shouldn’t the proletarians be edumacated first on the difference between salary and capital gains?

  62. ricky_nu says:

    gold- if you liked it 2 weeks ago, you must really love it now!

    down $109

    all forms of the short USD trade getting punished (a crowded trade for sure!)

  63. yo'me says:

    gold down 6.3%

  64. yo'me says:

    Wher is the cash going? Sell off on equities and metals.The only currency to run to is the useless dollar.This gives chopper ben an opportunity to print some more

  65. JJ says:

    in gold, cash is going to cover margin, pay taxes on gains or to sidelines to wait for a rentry point.

  66. Chuck Townsend says:

    re: # 69- Traders selling the ETFs to raise cash and the ETFs in turn having to sell their bullion exaggerating the move. As I said earlier today the margin desks have been working OT and there is money flowing into the dollar from Europe.

    Makes for a nice move down since the high on Sept 6th, but the fundamentals have not changed the printing presses are still running.

  67. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [67] gary

    Nah, that will just make them mad.

    I literally just got off the phone with a friend who is going to join the WS protesters (he wanted to stay over here, but his girlfriend was leery about staying with members of the Dark Side), and when I tried to explain this in very simple terms, he cut me off and said “you’re making my eyes glaze over.”

  68. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [72] chuck

    I agree but it begs the question about when to enter. I am averaging in, but that will get expensive if shiny keeps tanking.

  69. 3B says:

    #73 They are covered in blue tarps today, as it is raining.

  70. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Damn.

    I set a buy order this morning for GLD at 158. Didn’t expect it to get there, and it didn’t but it came awfully close.

  71. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Shiny funds made a pretty sharp reversal, so the street is putting in a bottom even though the metal keeps dropping. Don’t know if I trust this divergence.

  72. Jake says:

    [5]… Ha… you aren’t kidding… Should be interesting to watch.

  73. Chuck Townsend says:

    re: WS Protesters – not until the college kids join in will there be an real numbers.

  74. Chuck Townsend says:

    re: #70 – where is the cash going you ask?

    Private Equity ventures

  75. NJGator says:

    Chuck – It’s after 2. Shouldn’t you have left for the Hamptons already?

  76. Chuck Townsend says:

    re: #80 – my bird is down due to the weather and besides doesn’t someone need
    to get in my office and clean the damm commode already? If he isn’t in here in the next 15 minutes I am going to replace him with Chris Mitchell.

  77. Prof. McDullard says:

    #79… The only way the college kids know how to join in is via the internet or voting on the phone :(

  78. Kettle1^2 says:

    Shore

    The setup for WWIII is coming along nicely.

    his Is NOT Sparta As Greece Threatens To Partially Withdraw From NATO Citing Poverty
    Submitted by Tyler Durden on 09/23/2011 – 13:10

    In what is a pathetic attempt at Mutual Assured Destruction only in this case this Virtual Assured Suicide, Athens News reports that Greece, in order to demonstrate just how “serious” its fiscal condition is, will slash its defense spending in the form of support for NATO, thereby destabilizing the region even as Turkey and Syria are already on the verge of way: a development which NATO will surely be delighted by. “Greece will significantly reduce its participation in Nato and EU military missions due to the economic crisis in the country, National Defesce Minister Panos Beglitis announced on the sidelines of an informal EU defence ministers’ Council held here on Friday. He said that the ministry was preparing to cut down Greece’s participation in the Nato and EU missions in Afghanistan, Kosovo and Somalia, noting that local political forces in Afghanistan and Kosovo were anyway entering the phase where they would gradually take over control.” So instead of going ahead and doing any of the austerity stuff Greece promise to enact back in 2010, which has been sacrificially pushed forward from 2015 to 2014, pretty much like what the US will need to do soon to avoid more downgrades when the next debt ceiling hike is due in a year, it will instead pack up and leave, most likely giving Turkey the impression it can do whatever it wants in the region, and why not: after all the third coming of the Ottoman Empire has been long in the making.

  79. Happy Renter says:

    “Greece will significantly reduce its participation in Nato and EU military missions”

    Gee, I’m sure that will be a big loss.

  80. 3B says:

    #84 Kettle: I already solved this problem. The Republic of Macedonia gets the Greek province of Macedonia. Albania gets parts of western and northern Greece. Turkey gets Thrace and Salonika, and the island of Crete. The remaining core around Athens becomes a military compound administered by NATO. And while at it, Kosovo unites with Albania, as there is no need for 2 Albania’s. Problem solved.

  81. 3B says:

    #83 They are already there, with I phones and lap tops, and blue tarps today.

  82. Prof. McDullard says:

    Nom,

    I think — based on what I read so far — that Buffet’s chartiable giving was separate from the calculations (e.g. if he’s given a 0.5B this year to Gates Foundation, that donation’s impact on his taxes is a wash as long as he doesn’t include that money on his income column). He did include the FICA taxes, and did it at 15.1%, which I know is a bit of a stretch, but may be valid in one interpretation [those are the taxes the company is paying on behalf of the employee]. He even said something like the 15.1% is more than the carried interest rate.

    Clearly, he is presenting only one side of the story, but digging deeper raises a pretty difficult question (at least for me — you probably know the answer like the back of your hand): when is a tax a tax that should go into the “overall tax” portion, and when is income income that should end up on the left hand side?

    Some Subway owner politician was not quizzed further in this sequence:

    1. Interviewer: Looks like you made 6M last year.
    2. Pol: Well, after paying employees, investing in expansion opportunities, etc., it is like 600k.

    If 2 is true, then the answer to “1” is — “You are wrong, I made 600k last year”. This is on some major cable news channel — America’s spiritual guide. [Checked now: Tea party Rep. John Fleming on MSNBC, but at this point, who gives an f about what the rep’s name is or what the channel’s name is].

    Is our children learning good? Well… it depends.

  83. morpheus says:

    yeah!! shotgun has arrived.

  84. sexdating says:

    Keep up this good work, you have a nice blog over here with much good information! When you post some new stuff, I’ll visit your blog again and I’ll follow it.

  85. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [88] sastry

    I think you are conflating revenue with net income. Think of revenue as all the money coming in the door. Lots of it goes out to very ordinary things (rent, salaries, cost of goods, taxes, advertising costs, etc.). Some goes into reinvestment in the business, which is what happened here. What is left over is net income.

    Fact is, both answers are right as you get to the same place. The interviewee, however, wanted to stress that much goes into running his business, such that ATEOTD, his net was 10% of revenues. That part is lost on the Eliz Warren supporters.

  86. Al Mossberg says:

    19,

    Jason,

    I agree. Welcome and thank you for your logic. Buy gold and silver while the gettin is good.

  87. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [84]

    Greece has a military? Who knew?

  88. Al Mossberg says:

    31.

    Juice. Yep. I’m buying my Christmas gifts tomorrow. 1 oz silver eagles for everyone. Makes shopping easy.

    Ill be buying the terribly undervalued miners by Tuesday. Easy money.

    Ive been stashing fiat for at least 9 months waiting for a sale. Im going shopping b_tchez!

  89. Bob says:

    > Is our children learning good?

    LOL. You obviously didn’t learn much in school, there is no ‘a’ in lerning.

  90. Al Mossberg says:

    35.

    Homeboken,

    There’s a waterfront home by me that was listed for 10 million. Verizon CEO lived there. He was paying over 100k in property taxes. Just sold for a little over 4 million. Talk about a haircut.

    Property taxes are theft from your home equity. Fight them every year if you need to. The increases become exponential. I would rather pay a lawyer 600 bucks to fight my taxes on principal than to pay 1 extra dollar to the town.

  91. Al Mossberg says:

    I hope the satellite falls in my yard so I can convert my overpriced, overtaxed, crapshack into a historical museum.

  92. Al Mossberg says:

    58,

    Younger,

    For the love of God please stay out of Chicago. Do you have a death wish or something?

  93. Al Mossberg says:

    73,

    Nom,

    Re: WS protesters.

    I applaud them on recongnizing the real enemy. They could be out parroting Faux news or the Communist News Network. I disagree with their solutions. We live under corporate facism. This is why our markets dont make sense. You know this.

    Once the WS protesters start identifying the share holders of the Federal Reserve Bank then we can talk about tent and ammo sharing. I want an efigy of the Queen of England hanging from a lamp post. Then and only then will I take these protesters seriously. For now they are only hippies to me but much better than the average fat _ss American idiot.

  94. Libtard in the City says:

    Al,

    For once (maybe twice) I agree with you. If I didn’t have to fee these corporate fascists, I’d be out there with them.

  95. chicagofinance says:

    Maxi & clot:

    Ex-soccer ref sentenced to 30 months for smuggling heroin through JFK
    By MITCHEL MADDUX

    A former professional soccer referee from Ecuador was sentenced to 30 months in prison today for smuggling more than 13 and half pounds of heroin through JFK Airport.

    After retiring from sports officiating, Byron Moreno made a successful career for himself as a soccer commentator on television and radio channels in Ecuador and was a nationally-recognized figure there.

    But a change in his personal circumstances became the motivating force that propelled Moreno to take a gamble – trying to smuggle drugs past Customs inspectors at JFK.

    “He was in debt. Personal debt. He was just in over his head, and he made a very foolish choice. And now he’s going to pay for it,” his defense attorney, Michael Padden, said after the hearing in Brooklyn federal court.

    Before launching his television career, Moreno was a high-profile referee in the world of Latin American professional soccer.

    One of the more controversial calls in his officiating career came during the 2002 FIFA World Cup soccer championships.

    During a tense game between Italy and South Korea, Moreno ejected star striker Francesco Totti, giving the Italian a second yellow card for allegedly diving in the penalty area.

    The disputed call came 13 minutes into overtime in the World Cup’s second round and enraged Italian fans, who blamed Moreno for their team’s failure to achieve the soccer world’s ultimate victory.

    Later as a respected sports commentator on the Ecuadorian airwaves, Moreno established a comfortable life in the port city of Guayaquil.

    Moreno’s arrest in New York came after he stepped off a flight from Ecuador and US Customs inspectors noticed that he appeared “visibly nervous” during routine questioning at the airport, investigators say.

    An inspector felt “hard objects on [Moreno’s] stomach, back and both of his legs,” with a later strip search revealing the lumps were 10 clear plastic bags strapped to his body, according to a report filed by a US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agent.

    Moreno, who is 41, later pleaded guilty, and today apologized to Judge Edward Korman, saying that the incident “caused great pain for me.”

    “I’m sorry from the bottom of my heart. I’m very sorry,” Moreno said.

    Assistant Brooklyn US Attorney Richard Tucker told the judge that smuggling scheme was “a very serious case,” but also noted that Moreno has suffered from considerable personal tragedy.

    Moreno’s first child died as an infant. Then his girlfriend lost two pregnancies through miscarriages, his attorney said – one since his arrest.

    Under federal sentencing guidelines, Moreno faced 41-51 months in prison, but the judge gave him a lesser sentence given the totality of the circumstances.

    “He’s extremely ashamed, extremely humiliated,” Padden said of his client.

  96. Al Mossberg says:

    Lots of good post today.

    Kettle,

    Yes the chips are being put in place. A nice little regional war between Greece + Israel vs Turkey should set the stage nicely for a wider war. It would also disrupt NATO which would be instrumental in the big picture.

    The real prize is Pakistan. I cant believe that Americans are still foolish enough to participate in this charade by joining the military. Their lives have value and you parents should teach them this.

    My son will be reading Secrets of the Federal Reserve by the 2nd grade. Ill donate the coloring books to Montclair Twp.

  97. Juce Box says:

    Cumon fire a polaris missile at the satellite already!

  98. Prof. McDullard says:

    Nom, #92…

    I am not confusing revenue with income (I apologize if you didn’t say that). As someone that systematically worked with multiple options to push the AGI below the $150k to get the 8k new house freebie tax break, I would feel offended if someone says that I don’t know the difference between income and revenue.

    My question was why did *both* the interviewer and the businessman politician confuse it for us by using the word “made $X”. I could smell some BS, but I believe most may not even had, Jon Stewart made a passing reference about that guy having a sh!tty accountant.

    Did the interviewer honestly or lazily confuse revenue with income. My understanding is that the general usage of the word “made $X last year” almost always refers to something much closer to income and not to revenue, right? Why didn’t the businessman politician correct the interviewer [ego? saying “made $6M” makes him look like a winner versus correcting downwards makes him look like a loser?]. Why didn’t the dumb woman interviewer ask a follow up question? 6M revenue for over 30 food stores looks sort of on the low to medium end — ~550 bucks per day sales is very much in the general area.

    This is the same type of deliberate misinformation where people come on shows and say things like “it is better to be at the upper end of a lower tax bracket that to be at the lower end of the next higher tax bracket because you’ll end up with lesser money” — not true for all but exceptionally unique cases where the income falls very close to some sweet spot involving some income-dependent tax breaks. Those statements are not challenged, and we end up with Joe the Plumbers with $25k net income worrying about how he will get hurt when he gets to $250k revenue under O’s plan that is applicable for people with over $250k income!

    My impression is that any one with half a brain cell would know that if you have a business and have $X revenue and had $X+$dx expenses, one wouldn’t go out and say, “my store made $X money”, and instead say that the store lost $dx [give or take, and I do understand that there are way too many complexities — one could be paying oneself and spouse and kids and parents and end up with store losing money — requires a CPA once we dig a level or two deeper].

    Oh, please do retire my older nick… it isn’t a very common first name!

  99. Prof. McDullard says:

    Al, #104…

    I cant believe that Americans are still foolish enough to participate in this charade by joining the military. Their lives have value and you parents should teach them this.

    My son will be reading Secrets of the Federal Reserve by the 2nd grade. Ill donate the coloring books to Montclair Twp.

    Good point. I will probably bug you a bit to get a copy of your kid’s non-school curriculum.

  100. Prof. McDullard says:

    Stu/Al #102…

    “The man” has plans for all of you if you ever come to a strong agreement and identify a real enemy: You are all college educated, speak “elite” English, and “compromise” with other guys, so y’all have nothin’ common with real ‘murkans, and you don’t love real ‘murka.

    Why, even Al Mossberg name sounds arabic!

  101. Behindthefence says:

    Al (#104) Says… Yes the chips are being put in place. A nice little regional war between Greece + Israel vs Turkey should set the stage nicely for a wider war. It would also disrupt NATO which would be instrumental in the big picture.

    I have a relative in the military that is stationed in Turkey. He’s saying that the US has been building up their forces, notably aircraft in Turkey for the past couple of months. Not sure what to make of this, posturing or preparations, but it may not be good for someone over there.

    Also… I am still holding Hellix,. You? Here’s one for you to look at: “PL” (Protective Life): It has been crushed this year, currently paying a 4% div.

  102. Al Mossberg says:

    108.

    Prof,

    The key is identifying the real enemy. Once the opposing sides unite against it then its over for them.

    I take a long view of history. It probably will not come in my life time but the so long as the seeds are planted my losses will be avenged.

    The Federal Reserve Bank is a consortium of 9
    associated banks with the Rothschilds
    at the head:
    $1. Rothschild Banks of London and Berlin
    $2. Lazard Brothers Banks of Paris
    $3. Israel Moses Seif Banks of Italy
    $4. Warburg Bank of Hamburg and Amsterdam
    $5. Lehman Brothers of NY
    $6. Kuhn, Loeb Bank of NY (Now Shearson
    American Express)
    $7. Goldman, Sachs of NY
    $8. National Bank of Commerce NY/Morgan
    Guaranty Trust
    (J.P. Morgan Bank—Equitable Life—Levi P. Morton
    are principal shareholders)
    $9. Hanover Trust of NY (William and David
    Rockefeller & Chase National Bank NY are principal
    shareholders)

  103. Al Mossberg says:

    109,

    Behind,

    Hope your relative stays safe. If we could mobilize the American fat _ss perhaps your son could be closer to home. Ignorance is bliss.

    Re: Hellix

    They should be announcing a miner permit soon. That is the news that people are waiting for. Patience is key in the speculative mining sector. You have to go long and stay long while enduring the heartache in order to achieve the big gains. Dont bet against a bull market espcially when they are manipulated.

    Its shopping time. It will be QE to infinity.

  104. Behindthefence says:

    Al, I agree on both counts regarding the market.

    And let’s hope we all stay safe.

  105. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Well, I’ve been BTFD in GLD. Down some, but hopefully faith in the printing press will out.

  106. nj escapee says:

    Grand arrival for Navy’s newest warship
    http://www.keysnet.com/2011/09/23/381021/grand-arrival-for-navys-newest.html
    As scheduled, the new U.S. Navy destroyer Spruance arrived at Naval Air Station Key West Friday afternoon to prepare for its formal commissioning ceremony on Oct. 1.

    The 510-foot ship left the Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine, on Sept. 1. It’s a guided-missile ship that has a range of 4,400 miles and a crew of 370, and will be homeported in San Diego following its Key West commissioning.

    It’s a multi-mission ship that carries Tomahawk cruise missiles, a 5-inch gun, sonar systems and two helicopters. It’s powered by four gas-turbine engines and is capable of speeds in excess of 30 knots.

    The $1 billion ship is named for Adm. Raymond Spruance, who led Navy forces in World War II’s Battle of Midway.

    Although Key West is steeped in Navy tradition, with operations beginning as far back as 1822, it is the first time a naval vessel commissioning has been planned for the island city.

    The Spruance will be open for public tours Sept. 30 from 1 to 4 p.m.

  107. Fabius Maximus says:

    #65 Nom

    Don’T really want to get into Buffet, but thought this was interesting.

    Buffett showed his tax return to TV interviewer Charlie Rose last month.
    He told Rose he had $62 million in adjusted gross income and $39.8 million in taxable income after deductions. Buffett said he paid $6.9 million in taxes, a rate of 17.3 percent.
    http://www.omaha.com/article/20110923/NEWS01/110929871

  108. Fabius Maximus says:

    #98 Al

    I hope the satellite falls in my yard so I can claim salvage on the Ag and Pt

  109. Fabius Maximus says:

    #112 White Flight

    The chances of CC running are very slim. While the attention will be flattering, the reality is that his NJ record is not long and not much accomplished. The state has a high unemployment rate that shows no sign of moving and for the most part everything is the same as Corzine left it.

    But the biggest baggage would be the Sister Sarah label of “just another half term gov’ner wannabe”

    To CC’s credit, he has finally toned down the Bully BS and is coming off as less of an A-hole. The resolution of the Wallace hole he dug himself was handled very well. He took a loss with grace.
    http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/05/supreme_court_nominee_gets_lon.html

  110. Fabius Maximus says:

    Nom

    It came onto my radar today that the next presidental term will probably get between 1 to 4 SCOTUS picks. I assume the SCOTUS blogs you follow have picked up on this and was wondering what the overall view is.

    If O wins and you get Hillary in 2016, 4 picks for the dems is probably a lock.

  111. Shore Guy says:

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/10/07/politics/main6937237.shtml

    (AP) More than 89,000 stimulus payments of $250 each went to people who were either dead or in prison, a government investigator says in a new report.

    The payments, which were part of last year’s massive economic recovery package, were meant to increase consumer spending to help stimulate the economy.

    But about $18 million went to nearly 72,000 people who were dead, according to the report by the Social Security Administration’s inspector general.

    snip

    An additional $4.3 million went to more than 17,000 prison inmates, the report said.

    snip

  112. Shore Guy says:

    With friends like Pakistan….

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/09/23/eveningnews/main20110965.shtml?tag=pop;stories

    (CBS News) The insurgents who attacked the U.S. Embassy in Kabul last week were killed but their cell phones left a trail.

    The phones had been used to call Pakistani intelligence operatives before and during the assault. This evidence lies behind the charge made by Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that the Haqqani network is a “veritable arm” of Pakistani intelligence, CBS News national security correspondent David Martin reports.

    The attack on the U.S. Embassy and NATO’s Afghan headquarters resulted in a 22-hour firefight – with American troops pinned down on roof tops

    snip

  113. plume (63)-

    BTFD. And stop with this paper gold bullshit.

    Shiny, or nothing at all.

  114. Prof. McDullard says:

    #123…

    Wheels on the bus go round and round…

    During the ’99 Kargil War, India was complaining that the Kashmiri fighters were getting support from Pak, and US was relatively silent. Now, the shoe is on the other foot, and China is a big friend of Pak.

    It’s plain sad.

  115. cobbler says:

    shore [122]
    While I think the whole program was fairly useless (people on Social Security are the most likely ones to save rather than spend the money), the error rate of less than 0.2% is pretty good. I am sure that, having in mind that about 5% of SS recipients pass away every year, implementing stricter filters to prevent the payments to the very recently deceased’ accounts would have cost more than $22 Mln. Regarding the inmates, the more pertinent question is why they are getting the regular SS payments at all, not a one-time $250 grant…

  116. gluteus (121)-

    Pretty soon, the only justice that will matter will be the summary justice dispensed at the action end of a well-oiled firearm.

    I also predict the revival of “hangin’ judges”.

  117. dullard (125)-

    Sleep with the pigs, you get covered in shit.

  118. xmonger says:

    #123 How isn’t this an act of war?

    I suggest limited use of the spendy stuff on their nuclear assets but Thermobaric on the rest of that sh#thole.

    Keep it cheap. Kill them all.

  119. monger (129)-

    We should’ve turned that whole corner of the planet into a parking lot about 8 years ago.

  120. Al Mossberg says:

    Just went down to my local coin guy. He wouldnt sell me any 1oz silver eagles at first. He said he sold 100,000 worth of coins yesterday. Finally offered him a 6 dollar over spot premium and he agreed to sell.

  121. Prof. McDullard says:

    Al, $6 over spot premium per coin (10 oz)? That comes to be a much better deal percentage wise than what I used to get when I bought gold coins for jewelery… even during the $300/oz gold days.

  122. Al Mossberg says:

    133.

    That was for 1 oz coins. Small purchase for Christmas gifts.

  123. Shore Guy says:

    From Dick’s mouth to God’s ear:

    Obama might pull out

    By Dick Morris – 09/20/11 06:19 PM ET

    As bad news piles up for the Democrats, I asked a top Democratic strategist if it were possible that President Obama might “pull a Lyndon Johnson” and soberly face the cameras, telling America that he has decided that the demands of partisan politics are interfering with his efforts to right our economy and that he has decided to withdraw to devote full time to our recovery. His answer: “Yes. It’s possible. If things continue as they are and have not turned around by January, it is certainly possible.”

    Just looking at Michelle Obama’s unsmiling face during her husband’s recent speech to Congress triggered an insight: These folks aren’t having fun anymore.

    snip

    http://thehill.com/opinion/columnists/dick-morris/182765-obama-might-pull-out

  124. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (124) meat,

    Ultimately, it will wind up as another metal on a nompound, so what does it matter? Ride it up and pull the ripcord.

  125. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (118) fabius

    That we knew. I never doubted his stat. But w/o the secretarys return, we cannot test anything.

    (121) fabius,

    Will have to consult the oracle—Sheldon Goldman at UMass.

  126. SCOTUS are a bunch of tired-ass bitches…the left and the right. The lefties on the court have a clear agenda, and the right are just a bunch of facsist pawns.

  127. I do have to say that I was impressed at how SCOTUS so immediately declined to get involved in that stay of execution appeal in GA last week. Why stick your neck on the line for a little person…even if he didn’t do the crime?

    The public wants executions. Evidently, TPTB has decided to give us executions- in a measured dose, and with a story line that will captivate the Today Show demographic- in the v0yeuristic form that us spineless paramecia most appreciate.

  128. yo'me says:

    Thomas Friedman made another pitch for a “Grand Bargain” in his column today. (This phrase does indeed appear in capital letters in Friedman’s column.) The grand bargain involves cuts to Medicare and Social Security (which appear only as “entitlements” in Friedman’s column) in exchange for stimulus.

    There is no doubt that the economy needs more stimulus. The economy is losing close to $100 billion a month in lost output as a result of the collapse of the housing bubble. Furthermore, the longer this downturn persists the more people will see their lives ruined. Families are breaking up, houses are being lost and the long-term unemployed may lose the opportunity to ever work again. (All of this could have been prevented if people who are paid to opine on the economy, like Friedman, had been capable of seeing an $8 trillion housing bubble.)

    However, it is not clear why there should be any cuts in Medicare and Social Security as a quid pro quo. The cohorts nearing retirement, who would almost certainly be prime victims of Friedman’s Grand Bargain, has seen most of their wealth disappear as a result of the collapse of the housing bubble. Why does it make sense to hit them again with cuts to Medicare and Social Security?

    It might make more sense to hit Wall Street with a financial speculation tax, which could raise more than $1.5 trillion over the next decade. It might also make more sense to reduce payments to the pharmaceutical industry for drugs purchased through Medicare. This could easily save more than $300 billion over the next decade.

    In fact, serious people would be focused on reducing health care costs more generally. We spend more than twice as much per person for our health care as people in Canada, Germany and other wealthy countries with nothing obvious to show for this in terms of outcomes. If we paid the same amount per person for our health care as Canada or Germany, it would save the government close to $6 trillion over the next decade.

    People more familair with economics might be pointing to the possibility of raising large amounts of revenue by taxing financial speculation. They might also focus on fixing our private health care system so that it does not threaten to bankrupt the country. But, Friedman would rather take away Medicare and Social Security for retired workers.

    Dean Baker

  129. yo'me says:

    £1.75 trillion deal to save the euro
    The three-pronged deal would set up a massive fund to create a “firewall” around the most indebted eurozone countries, allow for an “orderly” Greek default on at least some of its liabilities, and bail out European banks most at risk from debt.

    German and French officials came up with the strategy which aims to end the eurozone’s sovereign debt crisis before it spirals completely out of control, plunging the world back into recession.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/8786945/1.75-trillion-deal-to-save-the-euro.html

  130. Yo, it all ends in tears. The whole planet is on tilt. All else is diversion and entertainment.

  131. “It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that the banks squandered a year to improve their capital base. BAC wasn’t selling cheap options to Warren Buffett when their stock was at 13. The SocGen CEO wasn’t on TV trying to convince investors that they had no funding or capital problems when his stock was at 42. The banks are even worse off than most of the countries, but why should anyone assume that waiting will make it easier for them to digest a Greek default… It seems that a lot has already been priced in and that the contagion is occurring whether we want it to or not, so we may as well let Greece default now and figure out how much has already been priced in and how to really stop the contagion from spreading to Italy and Spain and to banks that deserve to be saved. Let’s just admit it is gangrene and that it has already spread farther than is safe, but it is still better to cut off an arm to save the body. If we keep waiting it may not be possible to save the patient. The patient is getting weaker by the day, and being blind to that is just as big and just as dangerous as letting Greece default now.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/there-will-never-be-“good”-time-greece-default

  132. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    I don’t know which faction would get more out of this, the Fabius-Schab-Sastry faction or the Meat-Moose faction

    http://www.wcl.american.edu/events/classcrits/classcrit_schedule.pdf?rd=1

  133. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [134] shore

    That would partially make up for Obama Sr. not pulling out.

  134. yo'me says:

    Did the tax payers save their as*?This is how you get a thank you! Buy American.Right!

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-09-25/ford-motor-may-build-electric-cars-in-china-with-partner-ceo-mulally-says.html

  135. Prof. McDullard says:

    Nom, #143…

    some of the “lecture-based” stuff is usually not about finding solutions together but to advertise what it is that they are doing and how that is the best thing since fire was invented. A big ego plus a strong sense of righteousness usually blinds the people giving the lectures (happens to me frequently too). I don’t like to paint with a broad brush, but a set of 15 min lectures with 3 mins for Q/A is often a silly “conference” and not likely to be the birth place of solutions.

    Go easy on the nick… If prof doesn’t work, suggest a good nick — don’t know why I started off with my name as the nick three years ago, but we are here, so…

  136. nj escapee says:

    For the third straight year, the median income of the typical American family fell in 2010. Adjusted for inflation, it is back where it was in 1996, the longest period of zero growth since the Depression.
    And the poverty rate has inched up to 15.1 percent.
    Both figures, however, should be put in perspective.
    For example, a family can be classified as poor and own a car, a flat-screen TV and a computer, and have a washer-dryer and a garbage disposal.
    Folks below the poverty line have their kids educated free in Head Start, for 13 years in public schools, then get Pell grants for college. They get free food stamps and health care through Medicaid. They get subsidized housing and earned income tax credits, are eligible for all other safety-net programs, and can earn $23,300 in pretax income and pay no income taxes.
    Poverty in 21st century America is not poverty in the Paris of “Les Miserables” or the London of Oliver Twist or the Dust Bowl of Tom Joad.
    The 15-year stagnation in the median income of the American family, however — a vanishing of the American Dream that one’s children will know a better life — is a more serious matter.
    For there are causes of the stunted growth in the standard of living of the American family that neither party is willing to address, if either of them even recognizes those causes.
    First is the immersion of the U.S. economy in a global economy. This plunged U.S. workers into direct competition with workers in Asia and Latin America willing to do the same jobs for far less, in factories where regulations are far lighter.
    U.S. corporate executives leapt at the opportunity to close plants here and relocate abroad. This explains the 50,000 factories that disappeared in the Bush decade and the 5.5 million manufacturing jobs that vanished.
    You cannot have a rising standard of living when your highest-paid production jobs are being exported overseas.
    Now, to buy the goods of the foreign factories that used to be here, we are shoveling out more and more of America’s wealth. Our national bill for imported goods and services is $2.5 trillion a year. The U.S. trade deficit is back up to between $550 billion and $600 billion a year.
    If President Obama wishes to know why his $800 billion stimulus bill didn’t have the kick he expected, he should look at the “seepage” problem.
    How do you stimulate the U.S. economy when the workers you retain or rehire with your stimulus billions head for Walmarts on Saturday to buy goods made in Japan, Korea and China?
    Our $6 trillion in trade deficits in the Bush decade stimulated economies all over the world, just not our own. Indeed, the most successful economies of the last decade were China and Germany. Not coincidentally, they were the world’s two largest exporting countries.
    There are time-honored ways that nations have turned around such situations. What prevents us from adopting them? An ignorance of our own history, the immense investment of our transnational corporations in the new global arrangement, and the opposition of a World Trade Organization to which we have surrendered our national sovereignty.
    A second reason why the median income of American families is back to 1996 levels and sinking is mass immigration, legal and illegal.
    According to analyst Ed Rubenstein of VDARE.com, the United States, despite an unemployment rate above 9 percent, imports 100,000 immigrant workers every single month. Numbers USA contends that 125,000 foreign workers are brought in every month.
    Thus, well over a million workers are added annually to our labor force when 14 million Americans are looking for work.
    Why are we doing this?
    Is it xenophobic to say our own citizens should come first, that the importation of foreign workers must halt until our own unemployed have found jobs?
    A huge share of our immigrant population is Hispanic. And Rubenstein finds that for every 100 Hispanics employed in the United States in year 2001, 126 are employed today. But for every 100 non-Hispanics employed in 2001, only 98 are working today.
    What prevents our politicians from putting Americans first, deporting illegal aliens and suspending the importation of foreign labor until our own workers are back on the job?
    Politics is one reason. Democrats see illegal aliens and their children as future Democratic voters. Republicans are terrified of being called racists and alienating the ethnic lobbies.
    Crass commercial interest is another reason.
    U.S. companies see immigrants, legal or illegal, as an endless source of cheap labor to keep wage costs down. And they are right.
    But who is looking out for the national interest, for all of the members of the American family, especially the unemployed?
    If the median income of the American family is falling, already back to where it was in Bill Clinton’s first term, Middle America is one of the big losers in the global economy. And who are the big winners?

  137. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (145) yome

    I’m confused.

    Wasn’t it Ford that didn’t get bailed out?

    Wasnt it Ford that didn’t get a gov-arranged pre-pack that stiffed the bondholders and handed a big chunk of equity to UAW?

  138. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (147) escapee

    All the factory jobs disappeared under Bush? You’re dating yourself and your history books too.

  139. nj escapee says:

    149, Nom, my apologies, I should have acknowledged Pat Buchanan as the author.

  140. Mocha says:

    got a question I’m hoping someone here can answer; house “A” is up for sale for 429k. 2010 property assessment came in at 380k, now in 2011 the property assessment fell to 280k while the property tax bill jumped 25%. Wtf is up with this maneuver? Thanks for the help.

  141. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [150] escapee

    That helps you, but he is old enough to know better. The term “Rust Belt” certainly predated Bush (and Reagan for that matter).

  142. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [151] mocha

    Rates change, and do so every year.

  143. Fabius Maximus says:

    #134 Shore

    Is Dick Morris still grinding axes. At least he stopped shot of calling for Hillary to run. I can tollerate someone who fall from grace, but I have no time for someone like Morris who for all purposes “crossed the aisle’. That is the greatest political sin.

    As for the non story. O looks comfortable these days and is gearing up nicely for re-election. While POTUS is a high pressure job, it comes will great benefits that are hard to give up. When GWB was asked what he missed the most. The instant respose was the plane.

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