Friends of Dodd get special treatment

From the Wall Street Journal:

Angelo’s Angel
June 19, 2008; Page A14

Give Senator Christopher Dodd credit for nerve. On Tuesday, the very day he finally admitted knowing that Countrywide Financial regarded him as a “special” customer, the Connecticut Democrat also announced that he was bringing to the Senate floor a housing bailout sure to help lenders like Countrywide.

How much will Countrywide benefit from Mr. Dodd’s rescue? The Senator’s plan allows mortgage lenders to dump up to $300 billion of their worst loans on to taxpayers via a new Federal Housing Administration refinancing program, provided the lenders are willing to accept 87% of current market value. The program will be most attractive to lenders and investors holding subprime and slightly-less-risky Alt-A loans made during the height of the housing bubble in 2006 and 2007.

As the market leader during that period, Countrywide originated $167 billion of such loans, more than 11% of the nationwide total, according to Inside Mortgage Finance. Analyst Fred Cannon of Keefe, Bruyette and Woods estimates that the company is still holding more than $30 billion in subprime and Alt-A loans on its books, based on the company’s most recent quarterly financials.

What’s more, the company is holding $34 billion in home equity loans, which are even more risky than the mortgage loans, and typically result in 100% losses for the lender if a borrower defaults. The Dodd bailout will make it more likely that Countrywide gets some recovery from the worst of these loans because the mortgage holder will need to negotiate a settlement with the owner of the home equity loan before participating in the federal bailout.

If borrowers and lenders take full advantage of this new federal program, and Countrywide loans go south at roughly the same rate as those from other lenders, this suggests a potential taxpayer bailout of more than $25 billion for Countrywide-originated loans. Even if the losses turn out to be far less, why should taxpayers do anything to help a company that did so much to foment the mortgage mess?

Meanwhile, Mr. Dodd continues to insist that, though he knew he was a “special” Countrywide customer, he didn’t think he was getting any special financial benefit. But a $75,000 reduction in mortgage payments is no small matter for anyone living on a Senate salary of $169,300. Why else would he be known around Countrywide as a “Friend of Angelo” – Angelo being Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo.

Yesterday, nine Senate Republicans led by South Carolina’s Jim DeMint sent a letter asking Majority Leader Harry Reid to delay consideration of Mr. Dodd’s housing bailout bill in light of its benefits for Countrywide – and Countrywide’s benefits for Mr. Dodd. That’s an excellent idea, in addition to a Congressional and Justice Department probe of Countrywide, Fannie Mae and the favors they seem to have spread around Washington. American taxpayers need to understand more about who they’re being asked to bail out here, and why.

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452 Responses to Friends of Dodd get special treatment

  1. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    UBS, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank Face Writedowns, Goldman Says

    UBS AG, the European bank with the biggest losses from the subprime collapse, may book more writedowns in the second quarter than rivals Credit Suisse Group and Deutsche Bank AG, analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said.

    “Based on the movements of credit market indicators since the end of March, we believe that European banks could continue to face negative value adjustments,” Malmer wrote. Goldman also reduced forecasts for earnings per share for the three banks because of the “challenging environment in capital markets.”

    Banks and securities firms worldwide are grappling with $397 billion in losses and writedowns amid a seizure in the credit markets. Lenders have shed 83,000 jobs globally since the crisis began, are offering fewer loans and have raised $303 billion in new capital to shore up their balance sheets.

  2. R Patrick says:

    FOA baby, much better than being a friend of Bill.

  3. grim says:

    From Tampa Bay Online:

    Trump Tower Files For Chapter 11

    TAMPA It was supposed to be the shining example of downtown Tampa’s revitalization. A luxury condominium with a name recognizable around the globe.

    On Tuesday, the developer of proposed 52-story Trump Tower Tampa joined three other condo projects mired in bankruptcy. The filing is yet another sign the waterfront Trump Tower Tampa may never see light of day.

  4. grim says:

    From the Phoenix Business Journal:

    Washington Mutual plans to lay off hundreds

    Washington Mutual, battered by the nationwide housing downturn, is poised to announce another round of layoffs Thursday that will affect at least several hundred employees nationwide across all departments.

    While the Seattle-based thrift does not typically comment on rumors and speculation, it confirmed Wednesday that layoffs are pending. The bank’s spokeswoman, Darcy Donahue-Wilmot, declined to give more details.

    The bank, which saw a loss of more than $1 billion in its recent earnings report, said in April that it was closing its 186 home loan centers nationwide, laying off 3,000 loan officers in the process.

  5. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Thornburg Mortgage
    Says Survival in Doubt
    June 19, 2008; Page C2

    Thornburg Mortgage Inc. said in a federal filing that the future of the home-mortgage finance company as a viable business remains in doubt, despite a fund-raising plan announced two months ago that rescued it from bankruptcy at the time.

    Like other mortgage lenders, the Santa Fe, N.M., company has been under pressure during the housing crunch as the value of mortgages has fallen precipitously. But Thornburg’s troubles have been of particular interest because it specialized in loans to relatively wealthy, credit-worthy borrowers — not subprime loans.

  6. grim says:

    From the Lower Hudson Journal News:

    Foreclosure pace increases in Westchester, Rockland; slows in Putnam

    The pace of foreclosure filings has picked up this year in Westchester and Rockland counties but has slowed in Putnam, data from county clerks’ offices show. Sen. Charles Schumer yesterday announced support for more than $4 billion in foreclosure-related aid to struggling communities nationwide.

    Through May, nearly 1,200 foreclosure actions were started in Westchester, a 38.6 percent increase over the year-ago period. In Rockland, 654 foreclosure actions were started, up 34.6 percent. Putnam saw foreclosure actions fall 8.3 percent to 187.

    But housing counselors in the region warned that conditions could worsen. Veronica L. Raphael of Westchester Residential Opportunities in White Plains and Mount Vernon said that 687 subprime mortgages with adjustable interest rates were scheduled to reset between April and September in the county. Another 673 such mortgages are due to reset from October 2008 to September 2009, she said.

    A survey of foreclosures by the Rockland Commission on Human Rights showed large clusters in Haverstraw and Spring Valley, Commissioner Ram Nagubandi said.

  7. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Banks Find New Ways
    To Ease Pain of Bad Loans
    June 19, 2008; Page C1

    In January, Astoria Financial Corp. told investors that its pile of nonperforming loans had grown to about $106 million as of the end of last year. Three months later, the thrift holding company said the number was just $68 million.

    How did Astoria do it? By changing its internal policy on when mortgages are classified on its books as troubled. The Lake Success, N.Y., company now counts home loans as nonperforming when the borrower misses at least three payments, instead of two.

    Astoria says the change was made partly to make its disclosures on shaky mortgages more consistent with those of other lenders. An Astoria spokesman didn’t respond to requests for comment. But the shift shows one of the ways lenders increasingly are trying to make their real-estate misery look not quite so bad.

    From lengthening the time it takes to write off troubled mortgages, to parking lousy loans in subsidiaries that don’t count toward regulatory capital levels, the creative maneuvers are perfectly legal.

    Yet they could deepen suspicion about financial stocks, already suffering from dismal investor sentiment as loan delinquencies balloon and capital levels shrivel with no end in sight.

  8. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    HBOS Says [UK] House Prices to Fall 9% in 2008, Pushing Up Bad Loans

    HBOS Plc, the U.K.’s biggest mortgage lender, warned house prices will fall as much as 9 percent this year, more than it earlier forecast, forcing more borrowers to default on home loans.

    HBOS dropped as much as 6.8 percent in London trading today as the bank prepares to sell 4 billion pounds ($7.8 billion) of shares in a rights offering next month. The Edinburgh-based company wrote down an additional 200 million pounds, including stakes in homebuilders, and said in a statement that “continued softening in the economic climate” will push up charges for bad mortgage loans.

    “Their asset quality is deteriorating, and the outlook shows no confidence,” said Mamoun Tazi, a London-based analyst at MF Global Securities Ltd., who is “neutral” on the stock.

  9. grim says:

    From the Press of Atlantic City:

    High fuel costs keeping some fishermen docked

    It isn’t the price of bait that reduced business by about 40 percent at Jim’s Bait & Tackle in Lower Township in April and May. The real problem is the price of getting that bait out into the water where it can catch a fish.

    With gasoline and diesel fuel approaching $5 per gallon at area marinas, the number of people going fishing has fallen sharply.

    “It’s off big time. There’s no business during the week. It’s all weekends and tournaments,” Jim’s bait salesman Matt Slobodjian said.

    It isn’t just the high cost of boat fuel. Slobodjian, who said his own boat has been sitting on the trailer all year, noted that it is also the motor-vehicle fuel needed to get to the shore to go fishing.

  10. Occasional lurker says:

    The “Subprime Six” are being mostly ignored by the MSM. I wonder why.

  11. DL says:

    Here’s a new product that’s long overdue.
    “Homeowners Offered New Way to Tap House’s Equity.”

  12. dukeb says:

    Dodd, Spitzer, et al. What a bunch of scum. I used to think it was odd how all the loud mouths are corrupt. Then I realized most of these people are corrupt, but the duplicity of the loud mouths tends to out them first.

  13. mark says:

    come on now,,, they have our best interests in mind….

    they are there to protect us and look after us.

    same in Trenton,,,

  14. Clotpoll says:

    Does anybody seriously believe that anything will change until we march on DC, round up criminals like Dodd, then shoot them at sunrise?

    Maybe 1-2 Senators get their wrists slapped. Then, they’ll keep on doing what they’re doing, get old, and retire…just to be replaced by younger, smarter, more energetic thugs.

    When everybody’s pi**sed off enough to take up arms and march, wake me up.

  15. dblko says:

    11 DL:
    Love the names, “My equity freedom”. By the way I call my savings account from now on: “My cash freedom”. Good not to have a home to sell when the headhunter calls at 2am with that expat oversea assignment.

  16. thatBIGwindow says:

    That is okay, when Obama is president there will be some serious change, man.

  17. Tom says:

    Interesting about the fishing story.

    Yesterday I was looking at a foreclosure in BC. The owner of the home also owns a big seafood business including some popular local seafood restaurants. Not sure if it’s related.

  18. Pat says:

    Clot, hope springs eternal, doesn’t it?

    But here is a bit of information. Four people I know, who are neither tech-savvy nor have any non-Oprah knowledge, have told me about these websites. Websites where people talk to each other. People seem really radical, so they’re not sure about this stuff, though.

  19. Clotpoll says:

    Pat (18)-

    Love in the Ruins explains all.

  20. Pat says:


    Anybody else’s kids having bad allergy attacks this week?

  21. grim says:

    “We should quickly consider how to appropriately give the Fed the authority to access necessary information from highly complex financial institutions and the responsibility to intervene in order to protect the system,” Paulson plans to say, “so they can carry out the role our nation has come to expect.”

    Sounds like Paulson is planning on building a bailout machine.

  22. rhymingrealtor says:


    No allergies, but on another off topic question, anyone know how to get rid of a bad tan in a can? oooppsies!


  23. thatBIGwindow says:

    rhymingrealtor: as I recall you are in the Southern Bergen County area, correct?

  24. kettle1 says:



    Wikileaks has released a sensitive 219 page US military counterinsurgency manual. The manual, Foreign Internal Defense Tactics Techniques and Procedures for Special Forces (1994, 2004), may be critically described as “what we learned about running death squads and propping up corrupt government in Latin America and how to apply it to other places”. Its contents are both history defining for Latin America and, given the continued role of US Special Forces in the suppression of insurgencies, including in Iraq and Afghanistan, history making.

    The leaked manual, which has been verified with military sources, is the official US Special Forces doctrine for Foreign Internal Defense or FID.

    FID operations are designed to prop up “friendly” governments facing popular revolution or guerilla insurgency. FID interventions are often covert or quasi-covert due to the unpopular nature of the governments being supported (“In formulating a realistic policy for the use of advisors, the commander must carefully gauge the psychological climate of the HN [Host Nation] and the United States.”)

    The manual directly advocates training paramilitaries, pervasive surveillance, censorship, press control and restrictions on labor unions & political parties. It directly advocates warrantless searches, detainment without charge and (under varying circumstances) the suspension of habeas corpus. It directly advocates employing terrorists or prosecuting individuals for terrorism who are not terrorists, running false flag operations and concealing human rights abuses from journalists. And it repeatedly advocates the use of subterfuge and “psychological operations” (propaganda) to make these and other “population & resource control” measures more palatable.

    US Special Forces counter-insurgency manual FM 31-20-3.

  25. BC Bob says:

    “Paulson To Urge New Fed Powers”

    Going forward, any day the S&P’s come in down 2%, or more, there will be an automatic rate cut. We were told that we were in good hands, the fed was steering ths ship. Recently, it became the submarine. Is there a submarine large enough for these proposed new powere?

    I have a better idea, eliminate the fed.

  26. Fiddy Cents on the Dollar says:

    All of these politicians count on the voting public (or the small percentage that actually turns out on Election Day) having a short memory. By the time Dodd is up for re-election, all this will be a distant memory to the voters in Conn. And Dodd will go on racking up points for his pension.

  27. D Minus says:


    Try diluted nail polish remover. I used to use it straight to get it off my hands.

  28. kettle1 says:

    paulsons submarine???

  29. rhymingrealtor says:


    Yes, I would be the one with the really bad tan in a can(-:


  30. Rich In NNJ says:

    KL (23),

    Let me guess, it turned out less bronze goddess and more Oompa Loompa?
    My wife, who is melanin challenged as well has made the same mistake.

  31. Schaendenfraude says:


    Property Manager Lori Rice walks across the paint-splattered floor of a penthouse condominium vandalized by a squatter at The Club at Brickell Bay.
    Video | Squatters at a Brickell condo building
    Someone had kicked the door in on the foreclosure on the 33rd floor at The Club at Brickell Bay. Last week, Lori Rice, the building’s property manager, pushed it open. Inside, she found the tell-tale signs of a squatter: a mattress on the floor, a few toiletries in the bathroom.

    ”Clearly, a man was staying in there,” Rice said, adding that she called the police.

    When police arrived on Monday they found the marble floors splashed with black paint. The man had fled, leaving destruction in his wake — along with a change of clothes in the washing machine.

    Among the decidedly low-rent problems plaguing South Florida’s luxury condo market, squatters are the latest headache to arise from the glut of vacant foreclosures in some of Miami’s toniest condominiums.

    At a recent meeting at the Brickell on the River North, a room full of property managers sat down to commiserate over a slew of other troubles: Impostor landlords leasing units they do not own, collecting deposits and rent from unsuspecting tenants, and a rash of vandalism and burglaries. Investor-owners, desperate to turn a dollar, are even renting to tourists by the day, undercutting local hotels at bargain rates.

    ”When you come in with luggage, it’s kind of obvious,” said the outspoken Rice, who admits her building has been hit harder than the rest. ”They are advertising on Expedia.” During the 90-minute meeting, attended by cops and lawyers from the state, stories were shared and solutions discussed.

    ”We foresee [crime] becoming a major problem, and that’s why we’re addressing it immediately,” said Officer Jeffrey Giordano, who patrols the Brickell area and was at the meeting.


    The mini-condo crime wave comes at a bad time for the buildings’ community associations, many of which are grappling with financial hardship from unpaid maintenance fees on foreclosures. Fiscal woes make taking action difficult.

    ”Most associations are not inclined to incur the legal expense to remove someone from a unit that has been abandoned or [that is] in bank foreclosure because the legal expense is unlikely to be recoverable,” said Kenneth Direktor, a condo attorney with Hollywood-based Becker & Poliakoff.

    Rice, 30, took over management of The Club in December, riding in like a sheriff to establish order in a building overrun with outlaws. She said the problems resulted from mortgage fraud that produced an explosion of absentee owners and sketchy tenants since the building opened in late 2004. The Club has more than 260 units in foreclosure.

    After taking the job, she immediately deactivated 8,000 access cards for the building’s 640 units, incurring the wrath of many residents. After forcing everyone to reapply, she whittled the number to 1,400. Several squatters have been evicted over the past six months because of strict new registration policies, Rice said.

    ”No one lives in my building for free,” Rice said.

    Realtor lock boxes, which contain keys, and neon eviction stickers from the county announce to everyone units are vacant, Direktor said.


    Unlike the homeless in need of shelter or refugees displaced by natural disasters or war, it is not clear if this breed of freeloaders is as down on their luck.

    Paola Arboleda, manager of the Mark Yacht Club on Brickell Bay, said two months ago residents noticed someone hopping among various vacant units. A little snooping revealed the interloper was a mortgage broker.

    ”We didn’t know who he was paying or if he was paying,” Arboleda said. ”Thank God, he’s gone,” Arboleda said. Since lenders have tightened underwriting standards and curbed fraud, the problem is easier to control, she said.

    But most squatters aren’t in the units to just hang their hats, Giordano said.

    ”They are probably involved in prostitution, burglary and other criminal activity,” Giordano said. He suspects many cases are the work of an organized ring.


    Ada Portillo recently fell victim to one new scheme. The single mother needed a short-term rental while awaiting delivery of her condo at Met I Miami. She posted an ad on Craigslist, got a quick reply, and ended up in a lovely new place at Loft 2 in downtown Miami. She paid the $3,150 for a three-month lease up-front. The BMW-driving con man even helped her move in.

    ”He was very nice,” Portillo said.

    Two weeks later, the real owner surfaced and evicted her. She was out the money. After a little detective work, Portillo found the swindler had stolen the identity of a Mexican pizza maker in New Jersey. Miami police support her story and are on the case.

    ”I started crying. I didn’t know what to do,” Portillo said. The incident soured her on the condo lifestyle. She plans on walking away from her deposit at the Met I. Police said the scheme is happening at single-family homes as well.

    How squatters find their way into buildings is anyone’s guess. Most require entry using a key card and are manned by a concierge. Some buildings don’t automatically deactivate cards and fobs of former residents either. ”If a building doesn’t have more security than just a front desk, it’s going to be pretty easy to get around,” Direktor said.


    Miami Police Cmdr. Lorenzo Whitehead is urging property managers to establish Citizens’ Crime Watch programs to combat the problems. Instead of recruiting block captains, who take watch shifts in neighborhoods, Lorenzo said floor captains would pace hallways and circle the building.

    ”You have to be aggressive in addressing these issues,” Whitehead said. So far, though, the idea is being received with a collective cocked eyebrow. Ann Marie Procacci, a member of the Point View Association, which represents several, smaller condo buildings on Brickell Bay Drive, feared condo commando-types could take the idea too far.

    ”The nosy-neighbor system is better than that,” Procacci said.


    Managers are installing cameras at front desks. Rice snaps a mug shot of every visitor to the building.

    At the meeting, they were urged to get tougher about scheduling move-ins and getting tenants to register. Several have banned lock boxes. Rice is taking them and ripping down eviction notices.

    ”I’m am trying to restore people’s quality of life,” she said.

    “This is a nice community; I want people to feel safe and secure and enjoy living here.”

  32. thatBIGwindow says:

    KL: What is your overall opinion of the market in Southern BC?

  33. Rich In NNJ says:

    From The Record

    Tenafly man frozen out of his own money

    Small-business owner Carl Cetera of Tenafly has $1 million frozen in a Wachovia Securities account and is wondering how he is going to come up with the money he needs to close next month on a house he is buying.

    The account is frozen because the money is invested in auction-rate securities, complicated financial instruments backed — in Cetera’s case — by municipal bonds.

    So THAT’S where all the pant up demand is!

  34. kettle1 says:

    28 D minus/KL

    you dont really want to rub nail polish remover all over your body. it has some fairly nasty stuff in it. many still use toluene or similar solvents. toluene/solvents = bad

  35. thatBIGwindow says:

    My wife gets professionally spray tanned at Sensations in Lyndhurst, they do a really good job.

  36. grim says:

    New Jersey Tan Report

    Exfoliation is your friend

  37. Essex says:


  38. rhymingrealtor says:


    I’d be happy with ooompa loompa, but tiger better describes my look. Thankfully I tried only legs, but it really ruined the look of my new pedicure! I am a little afraid of the Nail polish remover, I am one of those really pale sensitive skin folks, and I usually embrace my whiteness, really don’t know what I was thinking.


  39. Essex says:

    Do we need the link to the orange people from NJ going to Prom again…..just say no to being a stereotypical jersyite

  40. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Paulson: Some institutions are too big to fail

    Hank, I’m too big to fail.

    When can I expect a drive thru window to be placed on the East Rutherford Fed Complex?

  41. schabadoo says:

    The “Subprime Six” are being mostly ignored by the MSM

    Is it safe to ignore most posts with things like ‘MSM’ in them?

  42. grim says:

    Good week for NJ layoffs, from the Department of Labor:


    State Change
    State Supplied Comment

    NJ +2,381
    Layoffs in the construction, trade, service, and manufacturing industries.

    NY +1,556
    Layoffs in the finance, insurance, trade, and manufacturing industries.

  43. Clotpoll says:

    grim (22)-

    More like a doomsday machine.

    I meant to share more about my all-day short sale thing yesterday, but three Knob Creeks and a soft couch thwarted me from doing so.

    Anyway, these guys were pretty sharp and are in the daily business of short sale/loss mit/REO brokerage. They talk to- and deal with- everybody from banks, to Fannie, to hedgies, to private equity. Their take is that within the next 24-36 months, there will be no more foreclosure/REO loop, but rather, early intervention/loan modification/mitigation…entirely lender-initiated. Why? If foreclosures continue at the current rate, the sheer volume of REOs will break all the mortgage lenders.

    Sounds crazy, but there’s a buck to be made somewhere in this morass.

  44. rhymingrealtor says:


    I think without really looking, that the prices in lyndhurst have come down considerably from 2 years ago. I remember when my son’s parents bought a home in spring 2006 for $409,000 I though OMG, that house ( it was not in tip top shape either) would come in today with an asking of no more than $369,000 and probably not get it.
    That, I know is just one example, but there are currently 27 homes in the 300-400 price range with at least 1/2 or more equivalant to the home they purchased in late 2006,and their not exactly flying off the shelves. If your familiar with Lyndhurst you know that price range buys you the same house SP, LR-DR-Kit-1st fl- 3 BR bath Second, the small 1940’s colonial.


  45. rhymingrealtor says:

    Did I say my son’s parents? ooops my son’s classmate’s Parents. I think we are my son’s parents? Doh


  46. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (25)-

    Tasty. This will provide some fine reading today. Thanks.

    Who wrote this? Dick Cheney?

  47. Clotpoll says:

    kl (45)-

    Does that make you Baby Mama?

  48. BC Bob says:

    Clot [43],

    It’s door # 3, Dead Man Walking. I think I’m turning Japanese, I really think so.

  49. frank says:

    “Good week for NJ layoffs, from the Department of Labor:”

    This report does not count illegal employment, my Mexican neighbors are finding more and more work in NJ these days.

  50. Clotpoll says:

    BC (26)-

    It’s a bathtub submarine with a nuclear generator. A leaky nuclear generator.

  51. Clotpoll says:

    BC (48)-

    Japanese, with a European older brother? ;)

  52. Clotpoll says:

    kl (30)-

    Muriatic acid, applied via spray cannister?

  53. Clotpoll says:

    window (35)-

    “My wife gets professionally spray tanned at Sensations in Lyndhurst, they do a really good job.”

    Sure that wasn’t an Earl Scheib shop?

  54. BC Bob says:


    Hang out in Kelly’s, Neptune. Have a few Iced Teas, LI that is. Can’t beat that bar glow.

  55. njrebear says:

    more rogue traders found…

    Ex-Bear Stearns managers surrender in NYC

  56. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Recession is ‘wild card’ for housing market: Centex exec

    Lawrence Angelilli, senior vice president of finance at Centex Corp., said the “wild card everyone is waiting to see” in the housing market is if the U.S. slips into a true economic recession. “No one who was unemployed ever bought a house,” the executive said during a webcast on Thursday at the Bank of America 2008 Home Builders Conference in New York. Angelilli said the current housing downturn has taken place despite historically low interest rates and unemployment. “If we introduce unemployment … that could be significant,” he said, adding that employment figures are “undoubtedly” the single most important statistic for the housing market.

  57. John says:

    Actually I head Obama’s baby mama did good yesterday on the View. I guess an ivy league lawyer can answer questions thrown at her from a Reality Game Show winner and Whoopie Goldberb. Plus when she bumped knuckles she got props for keeping it real.

  58. John says:

    Re: “No one who was unemployed ever bought a house,”

    What the heck is he talking about, I knew tons of 9/11 laid off people who lived off flipping houses from 2002-2006. In fact those unemployed people were the biggest buyers. My neighbor who was unemployed bought six houses between 2002 and 2005 and flipped them to feed his family. The guys working 60 hours a week in corporate america weren’t flipping houses.

  59. thatBIGwindow says:

    Voters don’t care about real issues. If a candidate seems “cool” and goes on Comedy Central and late night entertainment shows they are totally in!

  60. BC Bob says:

    Petty last night, “Free Fallin”, REM tonight, “It’s the End of the World as we know it”, the Boss in July, “Trapped”. Is somebody trying to tell me something?

  61. Clotpoll says:

    I’d like to see Jack Black be prez.

    That would be fun.

  62. SG says:

    RCA Ahoy !!! Only in NJ towns, in the name to keep low income folks out of town !!!

    To elaborate, the Township of Middletown had entered into a regional contribution agreement with the Borough of Red Bank to satisfy 98 units of its fair share at a cost of $20,000.00 per unit. Red Bank negotiated an RCA for the same 98 units with Manalapan, leaving Middletown with a 98 unit hole in its affordable housing plan. Middletown solved the problem Red Bank created by negotiating a replacement RCA with Lakewood in which 98 of the units would be at the $20,000.00 rate reflected in the Red Bank RCA. However, COAH required Middletown to apply to COAH for the right to pay the $20,000.00 rate for 98 units because it had increased the rate to $35,000.00. Middletown applied to COAH to authorize the Lakewood RCA and thereby cure the problem created by Red Bank. Lakewood supported the application and indeed desperately needed the RCA to rehabilitate deteriorated housing units in its community. However, Bamm Hollow opposed Middletown’s application and argued that Middletown should have to pay $35,000.00 per unit.

  63. grim says:


    Is that an LSAT question?

  64. SG says:

    Grim: LOL

    That was just one paragraph. Reading thru that article made my head spin.

  65. Clotpoll says:

    And we wonder why nobody wants to move to NJ.

    Curiouser and curiouser.

  66. grim says:

    Ex-Bear Stearns managers surrender in NYC

    Not even an attempt to pull a Samuel Israel? Or are they saving that for post-sentencing?

  67. gary says:

    thatBIGwindow [60],

    I’m wishing, hoping and prayin’ as hard as I possibly can for Obama to get elected and democrat majorities in the House and Senate. In fact, I hope it’s a f*cking landslide. And when that happens, I will expect absolute and total assistance in every shape, way and form for me and my family.

  68. JBJB says:

    As a resident of Middletown, I read the article to get a better understanding of what is going on. After reading that letter, I am more confused than before.

  69. Clotpoll says:

    Looks like Mike Morgan woke up cranky today:

    “I have had the opportunity to speak with quite a few executives from financial institutions. Some of them pay me quite well for my time, but then don’t do anything remotely close to what we discussed. And then they come back two months later wondering what hit them. All of them, without exception, either have no clue what is going on or are simply lying to collect a paycheck. Either way, it is bad. I’ve spoken with some banks about their residential inventory in terms of how to sell it quickly, without huge expenses and for the best price. It’s like talking to a rock underwater. I’ve spoken to institutions that have hundreds upon hundreds of millions invested in projects that I am quite familiar with. They’re still looking for the hidden value because they cannot believe their $300M loan is now only worth $50M. And if you think Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan are immune, think again. I can say that now because JPMorgan is not a client and Goldman Sachs has not been a client for a couple of years. You might think I am a jackass for saying that, because they will now never think of giving me new business, but for those that know me . . . they know I always tell it like it is.”

  70. njrebear says:

    They are both clones. The real Bear managers are in Hawaii drinking a cold one :)

  71. Clotpoll says:

    bear (71)-

    They should be looking for a place that doesn’t extradite.

  72. Tom says:

    “No allergies, but on another off topic question, anyone know how to get rid of a bad tan in a can? oooppsies!”

    Pat, just through it out while it’s still in the can.

    I know my timing sucks but I had to share :)

  73. Confused In NJ says:

    Clotpoll Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 7:18 am
    Does anybody seriously believe that anything will change until we march on DC, round up criminals like Dodd, then shoot them at sunrise?

    Maybe 1-2 Senators get their wrists slapped. Then, they’ll keep on doing what they’re doing, get old, and retire…just to be replaced by younger, smarter, more energetic thugs.

    When everybody’s pi**sed off enough to take up arms and march, wake me up.

    Clot it needs to be Graphic. Have the firing squad use tracers, after dousing the Senators in Gasoline. Otherwise the remainder will ignore it.

  74. bcamp111 says:


    That’s nothing! Marlboro reached an agreement to transfer 332 affordable housing units to Trenton. Now that’s a lot of COAH units!

  75. Confused In NJ says:

    Be interesting to see, when the layoff’s come, and 90% of NJ needs affordable housing, how the courts will modify Mt Laurel.

  76. Tom says:


    DC is kinda far, could we do it a little after lunch? If you want the amber glow then sunset would work better for me.

    By the way, have you guys seen the maps the Fed Reserve of NY put out for non-prime loans?

    It’s neat but I found it a bit annoying to use.

    After finding the spreadsheets, I stripped out the NJ subprime and alt-a mortgage data from 2/08 that they have available and put it in a table that’s easier to see.

    A large number of NJ’s non prime loans are Alt-A compared to other states. Around 40% of the alt-a loans are interest only or negative amortization. After the subprime arms reset, we’ll get some quieter time and then the alt-a’s will start. Like the Mr. Mortgage charts showed but it looks like the Alt-A’s might hit jersey harder than other states.

  77. thatBIGwindow says:

    I still want to know what “low income housing” is defined as.

    Are we talking about

    -Food Stamp and Welfare and Sec 8
    -Working Class Families that can’t afford $350k cape cod

    I think the first one is more likely.

  78. John says:

    Define Working Class?

  79. thatBIGwindow says:

    I would define as median income earners

  80. GetAClueNJ says:

    A corrupt democrat? No. I don’t believe it. We have tons of democrats here in NJ and never worry about any corruption.

  81. Tom says:

    2 bear stearns hedge fund managers were arrested

    hopefully more to come.

  82. BC Bob says:

    Back to the 90’s. Sure there’s $, but what % qualify? Lower the floor, raise the ceiling, turn back the clock. Traditional ratios? Good luck qualifying.

    BOSTON (MarketWatch) — Despite a contracted mortgage market, financing is still being offered to qualified home buyers, said Lawrence Angelilli, senior vice president of finance at Centex an industry conference Thursday. “Actually if you were to turn back the clock to the year 2000, probably somebody who qualified for a mortgage in 2000 would qualify for a mortgage today,” he said. “There’s a substantial emphasis now on down payment and being able to handle debt service within traditional ratios, and the market has had difficulty adjusting back to the old model in terms of mortgage qualifications, but liquidity is there for qualified buyers.” Steven Hilton, chief executive at Meritage Homes Corp., said “we’re back in the 1990s” in terms of mortgage finance with no more “exotic” loans being offered.

  83. njrebear says:

    Philly area factories weaker for 7th straight month in June

    The factory sector in the Philadelphia region weakened in June for the seventh straight month, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia reported Thursday. The Philly Fed index fell to negative 17.1 from negative 15.6 in May. Negative readings indicate that more firms say business is getting worse than say it’s getting better. The new orders index fell to negative 12.4 from negative 3.7. The prices paid index jumped to 69.3 from 53.8. In a special question, 65% of firms said they expect to raise prices in the next few months because of higher input costs

  84. Njkiwi says:

    Mozzilo is the expert on tan in a can. Give him a call. he might give you mate’s rates on a case.

  85. bi says:

    63#, 75#, first, i think all this COAH stuff is a scam to suck money from middle-class towns to builders and political contributors. second, RCA makes some sense to provide benefits to local cost areas. even former senator torricelli agrees:

  86. John says:

    Median income is like 57K in NJ, at 2.5 incomes to buy a house we need those starter run-down cape codes to go for $142.5, traditionally, pre-bubble NJers spent 4x incomes on houses so more likely we will get back to 228K for those starter run-down cape cods.

  87. make money says:

    What the heck is he talking about, I knew tons of 9/11 laid off people who lived off flipping houses from 2002-2006. In fact those unemployed people were the biggest buyers. My neighbor who was unemployed bought six houses between 2002 and 2005 and flipped them to feed his family. The guys working 60 hours a week in corporate america weren’t flipping houses.


    Take it from me. Buying and selling real estate is a full time job seven days a week.

  88. John says:

    SANTA FE, N.M.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–June 18, 2008 Thornburg Mortgage, Inc. (NYSE: TMA), announced today that on Wednesday, June 25, 2008, it will hold a conference call to explain the valuation and accounting for the recent $1.35 billion financing transaction and Override Agreement.

    Larry Goldstone, president and chief executive officer of the company, will host the conference call on Wednesday, June 25, 2008, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. EDT. The conference call will also be web cast live through a link at the company’s web site at

    The teleconference dial-in number is (866) 356-3377 and (617) 597-5392 internationally. The access code for the call is 31633226. A replay of the call will be available beginning at 2:00 p.m. on June 25, 2008, and ending at 11:59 p.m. on July 25, 2008. The replay dial-in number is (888) 286-8010 in the U.S. and (617) 801-6888 internationally. The access code for both replay numbers is 41035784. The conference call will also be archived on the company’s web site throughout the second quarter of 2008.

  89. Nom Deplume says:

    From yesterday’s thread,

    alia: I would not advise buying gun stocks on blips in sales. It doesn’t much affect their price or profits since they are into other lines of business (e.g., Sturm Ruger metal fab). Also, gun sales weren’t up that much, more likely a seasonal blip as they always rise in the 4th quarter (hunting season, Christmas). It was the ammo sales that surprised me, and I recall that Obama, et al. had discussed restricting ammo sales as a way to grab guns in place (a sort of inverse condemnation). That, and news reports discussed by Kettle on ammo prices, so that may have been simple stockpiling due to inflation. Or a combination of factors.

    Kettle: Thanks, good to know. ;-) Next time I am in PA, I will get some more 9x18mm for the Makarov, and stock up on .22 longs (I know, kid guns, but we weren’t hunters, just plinkers, and .22 ammo meant money left over for beer).

  90. Tom says:

    John, pre-bubble in Bergen was averaging 3.4ish and that was including data from the tail end of the last bubble. The high was 5.6.

    I was looking at some data this morning. 1973 was around the last time people were buying houses at 1x their yearly salary. In the 90’s it was actually less.

    I used a CPI inflation calculator to adjust the numbers. In 1967, the median income would be equivalent to almost $230k in today’s dollars. The median priced home was only around $154k in 2008 bucks.

    Must have been nice except for all those hippies.

  91. Stu says:

    gary Says:

    “I’m wishing, hoping and prayin’ as hard as I possibly can for Obama to get elected and democrat majorities in the House and Senate. In fact, I hope it’s a f*cking landslide. And when that happens, I will expect absolute and total assistance in every shape, way and form for me and my family.”

    It sure beats giving every tax break imaginable to the rich.

    Think 38% is bad? Look at the following link and check out 1944 and 1945.

    The ultra wealthy MUST pay more in taxes. If they don’t, then Brazil, here we come.

    I would start investing in companies that manufacture barbed wire fences otherwise. It will be in great demand.

    Where I will agree with most here is that the social programs need to be completely reformed to eliminate handouts. Welfare is truly a joke.

    The part of this whole debate that I can’t stand is that the middle class (I don’t care how you choose to define it) has watched their wage decrease for almost 30 years compared to inflation. Now check out the wage increases for the upper classes. Then consider the tax loopholes (shelters, offshore banks, fake farms, etc.) that they can take advantage of and to listen to them cry about a 3% increase in their income tax is total BS. And somehow, the majority that can’t afford a frickin’ POS cape think that trickle down theory works. It’s preposterous to me. I guess it’s much easier to blame the Mexican’s for our countries ills then to look at executive compensation or terrible foreign policy decisions.

  92. DL says:

    Have a NJ friend who flies for a soon to be merged airline. Flipped houses in his spare time. Even bought some tear-downs and built new. Don’t know how he did it but he worked 7 days a week.

  93. Pat says:

    there’s a buck to be made somewhere in this morass

    Buck One: The accountants team up with the liquidators.

  94. Stu says:

    bi Says:
    “i think all this COAH stuff is a scam to suck money from middle-class towns to builders and political contributors.”

    Wow. Stop the presses!!! I totally agree with bi.

    Now if bi could just stop making terrible equity market calls…no wait, my inverse black box needs reliable data.

  95. RayC says:

    Hey John, I thought you just referred to the future first lady as “baby mama’ again, but I couldn’t hear you through your hood.

    But maybe you aren’t a racist. Maybe you are just threatened by intelligent women. Hey, it could be a combination, who knows?

    With the wonderful job she did raising those two lovely well behaved girls, does Laura Bush even get “baby mama”? “Zookeeper”?

  96. make money says:

    John, pre-bubble in Bergen was averaging 3.4ish and that was including data from the tail end of the last bubble. The high was 5.6.

    I was looking at some data this morning. 1973 was around the last time people were buying houses at 1x their yearly salary. In the 90’s it was actually less.

    I used a CPI inflation calculator to adjust the numbers. In 1967, the median income would be equivalent to almost $230k in today’s dollars. The median priced home was only around $154k in 2008 bucks.

    Must have been nice except for all those hippies.

    Thank the Fed reserve for this. If we were on the Gold standard it would have remained the same.

  97. bi says:

    95#, here is a indicator that obama will do everthing to his advantage. this is what change we want?

    Obama to Break Promise, Opt Out of Public Financing for General Election

  98. make money says:

    50cents on one of his early songs said,

    “I’m a crook with a deal
    If my records don’t sell
    I’m gonna rob and steal”

    A sign of times to come. Next bubble is in Guns and amo.

  99. bi says:

    98#, the more i watch this process, the more i think obama could be an agent of middle east oil power.

  100. John says:

    Thornburg (TMA) Problems Raise CountryWide (CFC) Issues
    Thornburg Mortgage (TMA) may not make it. The mortgage bank once has a market cap of well over $5 billion. Its shares are down to $.65 and its market value is only about $100 million. TMA is trying to raise $1.35 billion, but that has proved difficult due to concerns about the housing market and more home loan defaults.

    Thornburg made most of its loans to people who were well off. That makes its trouble all the more peculiar. It also raises the issue of whether other companies in the industry still have more profound problems ahead of them. Since the largest company in the sector is CountryWide (CFC), the Thornburg collapse may have lessons beyond its own walls.

    CountryWide still trades above $4. That is down from a 52-week high of almost $39, but the shares have not fallen as far as TMA’s. Perhaps that is because Bank of America (BAC) is buying it.

    Wall St. continues to question the wisdom the BAC move. That may have helped drive the shares of the money center bank to a 52-week low of $28, about half of its high for the period.

    CountryWide may actually be worse off than Thornburg. It is more squarely in the troubled subprime market. It faces more large write-offs on both home loans and home equity loans.

    If CountryWide did not have BAC support, its shares could be well below $1. Without the promise of a “bail out” and with a slew of federal investigations, CFC could be facing the end of its days as well.

    The smoke signals from TMA say Bank of America paid too much for CountryWide, no matter how hard the company tries to defend the transaction.

    Douglas A. McIntyre

  101. Stu says:

    “98#, the more i watch this process, the more i think obama could be an agent of middle east oil power.”

    I withdraw my previous statement about agreeing with bi on political issues.

  102. PGC says:

    #98 bi

    “the more i watch this process, the more i think obama could be an agent of middle east oil power.”

    I think the Bush family cornered that market.

  103. John says:

    You are right Laura Bush did a great job raising her daughters, Michelle’s Mama is dong a great job raising Barrack’s and Michelle’s Daughters too. Michelle has two kids but she is not a full time Mom, she is more of a Madanna or Rosie type Mom who plays with them and reads them a book and leaves the parenting to someone else.I think Michelle’s “handlers” would have been proud of her yesterday. BTW when is she moving to DC, does she plan on “dialing in” or “teleconferencing” her first lady duties from her office in Chicago?

    RayC Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 10:35 am
    Hey John, I thought you just referred to the future first lady as “baby mama’ again, but I couldn’t hear you through your hood.

    But maybe you aren’t a racist. Maybe you are just threatened by intelligent women. Hey, it could be a combination, who knows?

    With the wonderful job she did raising those two lovely well behaved girls, does Laura Bush even get “baby mama”? “Zookeeper”?

  104. NJLifer says:

    40 grim

    Is that what the building next to Bellavia Buick is?

  105. Stu says:

    And bi, call a spade a spade. Obama only agreed to use the $3 the sheeple donate on their income taxes if McCain lawyers and his would agree on how the money would be used. This was well documented in 2007. Of course, like your Republican heros, you choose to conveniently leave out the pertinent info. Lies and deception in their new creed. The current administration has made fibbing the new standard. I am not surprised one bit by your willingness to deceive. Then again, should anyone trust the rantings of a man who predicted $60 oil in the fall of 2007?

    Quote from the same article…

    “In February 2007, I proposed a novel way to preserve the strength of the public financing system in the 2008 election. My plan requires both major party candidates to agree on a fundraising truce, return excess money from donors, and stay within the public financing system for the general election. My proposal followed announcements by some presidential candidates that they would forgo public financing so they could raise unlimited funds in the general election. The Federal Election Commission ruled the proposal legal, and Senator John McCain (R-AZ) has already pledged to accept this fundraising pledge. If I am the Democratic nominee, I will aggressively pursue an agreement with the Republican nominee to preserve a publicly financed general election.”

  106. PGC says:

    A few months back, my mortgage was bought by Countrywide. They are now starting the heavy sales pitch to get me to take out a Home Equity loan. I must have too much LTV in my house.

    Should I take out the loan to buy a new car to help stimulate the economy?

  107. gary says:


    “The ultra wealthy MUST pay more in taxes.”

    I have no problem with this whatsoever… seriously. I’m certainly not ever going to be in this class so, by all means.

    I got a meeting… I’ll post more later.

  108. bi says:

    108#, stu, you can defend your guy whatever you like. but in any business, trust is nubmer one. while mccain is not a flawless candidate, he certainly has better hope story to tell for the current and future generations of americans.
    i would vote for you if you would voluntarily be captured by al-qaeda and stay there for 6 months.

  109. John says:

    A steely 70-year-old matriarch with a raspy voice and seen-it-all laugh, Marian Robinson manages the family while Obama and his wife, Michelle, venture to the far reaches of the campaign trail. Amid the daily chaos of the marathon primary campaign, it often falls to Michelle’s mother to keep the Obamas’ two daughters – Malia, 9, and Sasha, 6 – grounded, not to mention fed, bathed, and in bed by 8:30 p.m.

    Depending on Michelle Obama’s work and campaign schedule, Robinson stays with Malia and Sasha at the Obamas’ six-bedroom home or looks after them at hers. When Michelle Obama is out of town, Robinson’s day is full: She sleeps over at the family’s house, gets the girls up in the morning, and feeds them breakfast according to the strictures imposed by their mother, who insists on organics and natural foods. Robinson ensures their lunches are packed, combs their hair, and drives them to school.

    Most days, Robinson becomes a chauffeur after school, shuttling her granddaughters to piano lessons, gymnastics, dance practice, soccer, and tennis. She prepares dinner (with certain nutritional requirements, of course), supervises their homework, and limits their TV watching to an hour. (Another rule of their mother’s.)

    “She has them so, I don’t know, like little soldiers,” Robinson said.

    “It’s not just Michelle, though. Barack Obama, when he talks to his daughters from the road, often inquires about the status of things on the homefront: Have they had their baths? “He checks,” Robinson said.

    Like fried chicken, for instance. Her secrets: using crumbled Ritz crackers in the batter, bathing the chicken pieces in ice water before frying (“that makes it crispier”), adding salt liberally, and using “lots of oil.”

    “If you’re going to have fried chicken,” she said, “have fried chicken.”Continued…

    Robinson’s deep involvement in her granddaughters’ lives gives the Obamas a direct link to a simpler past that the couple hold as something of an ideal. Obama celebrates his peripatetic upbringing in Hawaii and Indonesia, but he has sought a more rooted upbringing for his own children, one more like his wife had.

    “It was tight, but it was adequate,” Craig we do that?’ ”

    Marian Robinson held various secretarial jobs once her daughter was in high school. Michelle Obama’s father, Fraser, worked as a “stationary fireman,” tending boilers at a city water-filtration plant. A one-time boxer, he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at 30. He died in his mid-50s in 1991, the year before Barack and Michelle Obama were married.

    The Robinsons have been “the rock for their kids,” said Verna Williams, a friend of Michelle Obama’s from Harvard Law School who teaches law at the University of Cincinnati. Marian Robinson, she said, “definitely holds the family together.”

    “It’s sort of like the whole cycle-of-life thing,” Craig Robinson said. “The girls need her, but she needs the girls.”

    Marian Robinson said she has taken on such an active role with her granddaughters, partly because her daughter did more campaigning than anyone expected.

    “She just did what she always does once she goes along with something,” Robinson said. “She just jumps in.”

    Suddenly being part of such a high-profile political family is a strange, and at times unsettling, turn for Marian Robinson, who said her husband, a former precinct captain, was the only one in her family who cared about politics.

    Even the prospect of a family move to the White House has forced Marian Robinson, a Chicagoan through and through, to ponder the bittersweet thought of relocating to Washington.

    “I will do whatever she needs me to do,” she said of her daughter. “I’ll be mad, but I’ll do it.”

    Marian Robinson is a rare presence on the trail, though she campaigned with her daughter in New Hampshire last June. But she allows that she has become a political junkie, unable to resist the near-constant news coverage of her loved ones – even when it makes her angry.

    “They’re some strong people, and doing things I couldn’t do,” she said. “Which is what you want your kids to do – not have those restrictions that you had.”

    Scott Helman can be reached at

    © Copyright 2008 Globe Newspaper Company.

  110. Tom says:

    PGC, take out a heloc to buy another house to help prop up the housing market so that lenders that screwed things up can get out of their foreclosed properties with something decent.

    Otherwise financial institutions are going to go through a major overhaul. There will be many indictments and calls for executives to return bonuses.

    And as everyone knows, every time a billionaire cries, an angel loses it’s wings.

  111. Stu says:

    Trust BI?

    Forget about it!!!

    He’s an adulterer, and claims General P. drives around Baghdad in an unarmoured SUV “almost every day.”

    I would trust the homeless junky more than McCain because one expects the junky to deceive. One does not expect the Republican candidate for presidency to deceive. And if they are going to, you would want to elect someone with a much better ability to do so.

    Go to McCain’s wikipedia entry and read it to find out how flawed his character is. Then come back and tell me you can trust him.

  112. skep-tic says:


    “traditionally, pre-bubble NJers spent 4x incomes on houses so more likely we will get back to 228K for those starter run-down cape cods.”

    agreed. still a long way to fall

  113. njpatient says:

    98 bi

    I hope you know your guy did that first, but only after he took the loans and the free ballot access in violation of the law?

  114. BC Bob says:

    …..And the carnival barkers thought Benny and the dead heads would resurrect housing. They have only succeeded in burying the consumer.

    SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch)Freddie Mac said Thursday the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage average rose from last week to 6.42% with an average 0.7 point for the week ending June 19, the highest since the week ending Sept. 27 when it averaged 6.42%. Last week, the average was 6.32%, and the year-ago average was 6.69%. “Fixed-rate mortgage rates continued to climb this week to the highest point in nearly nine months following the release of May’s consumer and producer price indexes, both of which showed stronger levels of inflation,” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac chief economist, in a statement. “Additionally, consumer prices rose 0.6% last month, the most since November 2007, and traders began to fully price in a Federal Reserve rate hike by the end of September, based on the federal funds futures market.”

  115. kettle1 says:

    clott 72,

    Regarding extradition….this might help

  116. prtraders2000 says:

    Gary & Stu

    This was a great article on taxes and the rich. According to the article, the bottom 40%, by income, of tax payers had a negative tax rate! That’s a huge %. Why should any of them even care about taxes when it doesn’t affect them?

    I never liked unions, but there’s little doubt that they kept wages growing for the working middle class. Wages need to rise and the mega rich need to be compelled to share the wealth that is being created by those working for them.

  117. kettle1 says:

    74 confused, clott

    DO a “wheel of fortune” on the ca[ital steps. the corrupt politicians spins the wheel to see what form of execution will be used. The execution is the performed on the spot without delay.

    afterwards their bodies/remains are placed in clear lucite and put on display in the main gallery of the capital building as a reminder to all politicians who may follow.

    something like this, but with politicians

  118. Tom says:

    What’s disturbing is how lenders have been getting their money more from repackaging mortgages and selling them to the secondary mortgage market and then wind up on the credit derivatives market.

    This gives the lenders too much incentive to originate more and more loans. Too many people also expect to profit off of them as well.

    There was a HUD Affordability Report in 2005 with this graph that broke the house price to income ratio down by income range.

    The less money you have the more of it you spend towards your house. In the beginning of the bubble, as low and mid income individuals were spending increasingly more for their homes in relation to their incomes, the high income group was spending less. My guess is that they were benefiting in different ways from the lower and middle income groups over extending themselves creating more and more loans that were then being traded.

    That may not be it but there has to be something there when the low and middle income groups price to income ratios are going up at a faster rate, the high income group is going down.

  119. jam says:

    [115] I think that is too optomistic/pessimistic an outlook. Inflation and other factors will most likely not allow home prices to fall back to those pre-bubble levels – although in some areas – anything can happen.
    Without the bubble, home prices, most likely, would have increased to some degree.
    The problem is that those $250K capes started selling for $450K which is completely out of line with any logical appreciation. My guess is that $330 to $360 is where they will come in line. Lending, of course, will have to loosen up for this to happen. This is not a long shot since our law makers seem hell bent on assisting in this.

  120. njpatient says:

    119 prtraders

    That article is about income taxes. Income taxes are not the major portion of the tax burden for the bottom 40%.

  121. John says:

    McCain might be an adulterer, wife one was divorced from a class mate of his when they married, then he cheated on her and married that women who became wife two. Since wife one was married before and I can’t figure out if wife one got an annulment before they married it all hinges on if that wife one marriage was a valid church marriage. It appears McCain did a church wedding with wife two with no mention of an annulment. Now does his religion allow multiple marriages without an annulement? Even so it is dependent on his first wife’s religion too. Heck I am still trying to figure out Marian Obama’s religion cause in reality the kids are being raised by her so technically since Barrack left the fly by night religion that is the religion of Michelle and her kids.

  122. njpatient says:

    it’s a mendacious article, really.

  123. John says:

    The key issue is Obama says he is cutting taxes for the lower income people who don’t pay taxes to begin with, how does that work?

  124. John says:

    Re 125 – those are the best types!!! I doubt you could ever get a job at People Magazine with that attitude.

  125. lisoosh says:

    thatBIGwindow Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 9:45 am
    “I still want to know what “low income housing” is defined as.

    Are we talking about

    -Food Stamp and Welfare and Sec 8
    -Working Class Families that can’t afford $350k cape cod

    I think the first one is more likely.”

    Low income has specified limits per family size and county. Family of 4 it is around $35k. Median income around $60k. Those are the guidelines for COAH housing. Homes sold under COAH have to be priced to be affordable within those guidelines. COAH owners have to sell within the guidelines also.
    Market rate townhouse might be $300k. A townhouse in the same development under COAH is usually simpler, very basically appointed and might have a fixed price of say $140k.

    Nothing to do with welfare for food stamps. It is for the working poor/ish.

  126. kettle1 says:


    take out a the HELOC at the highest level possible ,buy gold, stop making PITI payments and then negotiate a lower PITI note, pay the new note for 1 year then default while living in the house for a year with no note or rent……. PROFIT

    isnt that what the Investment Banks are essentially doing?!?

  127. njpatient says:

    126 john
    “lower income people who don’t pay taxes to begin with”


  128. jam says:

    Here’s a question. In the last presidential election, the democrates touted that if you made 200K a year you were one of the wealthiest families in America.
    In fact, in one of the debates, I think Edwards stated those people sit by their pools and collect their dividend payments.
    Ok, if 2.5x income is what buys a pos cape – that would mean that the wealthiest in NJ are buying $500K homes. Last I looked that was a pos cape or a pos split if you were lucky.
    So here’s the question – does any politician really know what the heck is going on in NJ?

  129. John says:

    Citigroup likely to take “substantial” Q2 subprime markdowns

    By Greg Morcroft
    Last update: 11:35 a.m. EDT June 19, 2008
    NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Citigroup Inc’s (C:Citigroup, Inc
    News, chart, profile, more
    Last: 19.54-0.86-4.22%

    11:45am 06/19/2008

    Delayed quote dataAdd to portfolio
    Create alertInsider
    Sponsored by:
    C 19.54, -0.86, -4.2%) chief financial officer Gary Crittenden said Thursday that, “if current trends prevail, it is fair to conclude we will continue to have substantial additional marks on our subprime exposure this quarter.” Crittenden made the comments on a conference call sponsored by Deutsche Bank. Crittenden added that it’s reasonable to expect that credit costs will continue to rise through 2008, and that provisions for losses in its consumer business will also grow. Crittenden said that the company expects revenue growth of 9% “two to three years out,” and sees long-term expense reduction of $15 billion. The comments pressured Citigroup shares, driving them down 74 cents, or 3.6%, to $19.66.

  130. jam says:

    eh – more write downs?

  131. John says:

    Not a myth, fact. In fact the vast majority of people pay nothing including most people earning under 200K a year. To me you can’t complain about taxes unless you put in more than you get out. Most of use rely on Mortgage subsidies, highway subsidies, Public transportation subsidies, schools, libraries, parks, medical stuff etc. Someone making 200K with three kids in public schools most likely is not paying any tax. He may give in 50K and get back 50K. It is the 500K + earners who are older with no kids in public school that chip in the bulk of the taxes.

    njpatient Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 11:42 am
    126 john
    “lower income people who don’t pay taxes to begin with”


  132. frank says:

    Historically Bergen County, NJ paid 4.5x income for housing, today the ratio is 6.2

  133. HEHEHE says:

    “grim Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 8:38 am
    From MarketWatch:

    Paulson: Some institutions are too big to fail

    Hank, I’m too big to fail.

    When can I expect a drive thru window to be placed on the East Rutherford Fed Complex?”

    Yeah Hank, give me a few billion to trade with to get through these hard times. I’ll pay you back at the end of the month.

  134. John says:

    TMA $0.24 -$0.41 -63.08%
    As of 11:39AM 06/19/08

  135. Stu says:

    Interesting article 119 prtraders.

    “So if the rich are paying more income tax, yet are being taxed at a lower rate, there can be only one explanation: their incomes must be growing fast, much faster than the rest of the population’s.”

    Hence my justification for raising the taxes on the top tax brackets and the increase in the demand for barbed wire fencing.

  136. chicagofinance says:

    going here tomorrow…it’s open to the public….$40, but you get lunch…

    “New Jersey Economic Outlook”

    Friday, June 20, 2008, Woodlake Country Club, Lakewood
    Featured Guest Speaker

    James W. Hughes, Dean Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning & Public Policy
    Rutgers University

    Employment growth in New Jersey plateaued in 2007, and went negative in the first quarter of 2008. How has New Jersey fared relative to the rest of the nation and its peer economic states? What is the outlook for the nation, and New Jersey , for the balance of 2008 and into 2009. Dean Hughes will be addressing these questions, and more, in his enlightening presentation.

  137. Stu says:


    Would love a summary of your findings.

  138. jcer says:

    Jam, that is what scares the hell out of me, a family of 4 with 150-200k income in NYC metro, Boston, Chicagoland, LA, San Fransisco, DC!! etc is firmly middle class and has a very limited level of comfort. There are huge regional differences in the US. I have a friend in NC, he makes 35% of my income and his standard of living is not terribly lower than mine. There is an unwillingness to accept at a national level that there is a huge difference between 100k in NYC and WV and in the large metro areas the middle class is who always gets sacked. The repubs as well as the dems always hurt the middle and Obama seems hellbent on hurting the middle class.

  139. John says:

    A2/A 172967572 CPRP CITIGROUP 8.125% PFD 2.031 23.680 8.677
    AA3/A 172967556 CPRM CITIGROUP 8.50% PFD 2.125 24.730 8.625

    I love “A rated investement grade stock with 8% plus dividends. How much does citi pay for its ratings, it has some long term bonds at 9% now, also with “A” ratings. What a joke.

  140. skep-tic says:

    if the price to income ratio of housing dropped to 4.0, it was still mean about a 30% drop in prices. Predicting anything beyond this seems to me very optimistic (if you are a bear)

  141. skep-tic says:


    “The ultra wealthy MUST pay more in taxes.”

    please define “ultra wealthy” and “more”

  142. NNJJEFF says:

    Can anyone with MLS access give me the status of
    #2822792. Is it U/C?

    thnx in advance

  143. chicagofinance says:

    I am indifferent as to how this situation went down. I am pleased it is resolved. Everything else is just noise.

  144. njpatient says:

    134 john

    “Not a myth, fact. In fact the vast majority of people pay nothing including most people earning under 200K a year.”

    You’re so full of crap it’s coming out your ears. Income tax is only a small portion of the tax burden for most folks in the country, especially the folks in the highest income brackets, most of whose income is taxed as capital gains rather than as income. But in mendacious articles such as the one prtrader quoted, the discussion is limited to federal income taxes, because that’s the area where the poor get a break. For the most part, they don’t get a break on payroll taxes, with the result that FICA/FUTA is a massively regressive tax where, if you make $80K/year your paying 10% in FICA/FUTA but if you make $10,000,000/year you’re paying 1% in FICA/FUTA. That’s before we get to sales tax (which is also regressive because a far higher percentage of poor folks’ income goes to actual purchases as opposed to folks in the top 1% who can sock it away tax free in a NQDP or some other tax-deferred vehicle), property tax and any other consumption taxes, which are generally flat to regressive.

    The all-in effective tax rate for the bottom third of taxpayers is remarkably similar to the all-in effective tax rate for the top third.

  145. John says:

    Income is growing for the rich on paper only, they are recording it while rates are still low. When Obama raises it they will buy and hold RE and Stock/Options, move into longer LTI at work and into tax free munis and other investments. Lots of people, I know are cashing it in before 2010. This will result in more tax revenue in 2008/2009 and then a huge drop in tax revenue when rates go up as people pushed income forward and they are incentived to delay income.

  146. BC Bob says:

    “going here tomorrow…it’s open to the public….$40, but you get lunch…”


    Forget lunch, it would be enticing if you received a one way E-Z pass, out of the state.

  147. njpatient says:

    change the subject, then.

  148. kettle1 says:

    SKeptic, 144

    annual income including various stocks and other financial instruments of greater then 2 million. to be taxed at 90% of income over the 2 million mark. This includes the $ value of perks given in exchange for services rendered (i.e use of the corporate jet)

  149. John says:

    FICA the rich get soaked. A dink where husband and wife work get taxed on 204K worth of SS and the 102K of SS the wife is taxed on she won’t see a dime of it. % wise it is less, but a blue collar worker with a stay at home wife making 70K gets taxed on 70K fica and gets to keep it all in retirement. The rich guy gets fica taxed at 204K but only gets payments as if he paid on 102.

  150. Stu says:


    Ultra wealthy would be incomes greater than 500K/year. More would be somewhere between a true tax rate of 40 and 50% for starters. And realistically, with all of the loopholes that exist today, my guess is that the average ultra wealthy would still end up paying less in taxes than I do.

    And John, just because are taxes are a good deal, has nothing to do with our diminishing wages. That is the crux of the problem. If my wage was increasing double the speed of inflation, I wouldn’t be bitchin’ so much about my taxes.

  151. skep-tic says:


    “annual income including various stocks and other financial instruments of greater then 2 million. to be taxed at 90% of income over the 2 million mark.”

    I am obviously not in this class of person, but this is an insane idea. You are talking about basically destroying every modestly successful small businessperson in America

  152. bi says:

    114#, stu, libs like you always have double standard: it was fine for clinton when he was still in office. but you cannot forgive something happened over 30 years ago.

  153. DINJ says:

    There go the bonuses…..
    Hundreds of brokers netted in FBI sweep

  154. skep-tic says:

    The question for the “soak the rich” crowd is this: what is the maximum rate you think you can tax the most mobile members of our society at before they take their capital/skills elsewhere? Given America’s p*ss poor job of competing on the world stage at this moment in a large number of industries, I would argue that we are pretty close to that level already. Jacking rates up by a substantial degree will in my view mostly harm the employees of these entrepreneurs (and they are mostly entrepreneurs) who take their businesses elsewhere

  155. kettle1 says:

    heads up people, we have governments making public statements of peak oil gas….

    The Dutch government acknowledged in its new energy strategy that Dutch natural gas production has passed its peak (file in Dutch here). Stating that the peak occurred in 2007/2008 and the Netherlands will have become a net importer of natural gas by 2025.

    this means that things have progressed far enough where even the governments are starting to realize they have to acknowledge it. This also means that there will be a continued bumpy upward climb in natural gas prices ( and home heating) around the world as the competition for a shrinking resource increases..

    more here

  156. skep-tic says:


    no arguing that $500k income isn’t wealthy, but it basically affords you a 3 BR apartment in NYC.

  157. kettle1 says:


    i know a few small business owners who are doing well. their personal incomes are not 2 million/yr. That is way beyond a small business owner. I am talking about personal income, not business income. And yes i know that such a determination is dependent upon how the business is set up and other tax codes.

  158. BC Bob says:

    “to be taxed at 90% of income over the 2 million mark”

    I agree with Skep, it’s insane. The backbone of this country is small business/entrepreneurs. Capital will flow to countries with low tax rates.

  159. prtraders2000 says:


    “More fundamental is why some people’s incomes are growing so much faster than other people’s incomes. That, and not taxes, is what the supposed tax debate is really about.”

    This was the point. Of course the tax burden is more than just income taxes and includes many regressive taxes that are more burdensome on the poor. The rich are continuing to increase their share of the pie, while the growing poor have less to divide amongst themselves.

    IMHO they should do away with the SS cap, 102,000, or at least raise it until SS improves it’s position.

  160. bi says:

    128#, lisoosh, if coah is for working poor, it will keep working poor poorer. since most assets such as real-estate will appreciate in long run, coah basically ban them from particpating free market system. to me, it is a drug no different from foodstamp and etc.

  161. kettle1 says:

    i have nothing against wealth people, the issue is income stratification. If the national income stratification becomes too extreme, then there is a net negative effect on everyone as the US will start to look like parts of brazil or idia.

  162. BC Bob says:

    “heads up people, we have governments making public statements of peak oil gas….”


    Short term the back month spreads are not buying the argument of peak oil. The back months are bidding for storage. Again, short term.

  163. kettle1 says:

    BC Skep,

    my suggestion may be way off, i pulled it out of thin air. But what do you suggest to reduce/stop the increasing income stratification?

  164. njrebear says:

    I don’t see any handcuffs or leg chains.

  165. kettle1 says:

    BC Bob,

    read an article the other day suggesting that if you want to make lots of money on the energy markets then coordinate with the rebel groups in nigeria and similar places and have them attack oil infrastructure while you go short/long. The suggestion is that it is only a matter of time before someone starts doing this. If done correctly it would be almost impossible to track or prove.

  166. kettle1 says:

    BC Bob,

    is the market always right?

  167. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (164)-

    “…US will start to look like parts of brazil…”

    Already does. We are now simply at the top of the heap of Third World countries.

  168. skep-tic says:


    kettle– there is obviously a range of small businesses, from a lady selling cookies out of here home to multimillion dollar enterprises. $2M on a personal level is a lot of money, but if you own a successful restaurant, or consulting firm or small manufacturing firm, this might be you. And of course, you raise the issue of if your business is set up as a partnership or an LLC, you have pass through taxation. My point is there are tons of businesses which are by reasonable definition “small” where the founder makes at least a couple of million dollars per year (taking all of the profits). These business employ millions in the aggregate

  169. BC Bob says:

    “is the market always right?”


    I’m not sure if that is addressed to the long or shorts?

  170. kettle1 says:


    I do not disagree wit you. I am in no way a taxation guru and cannot even claim to be an amateur. What direction should we be heading in in order to combat income stratification then?, really, what would you suggest we try, i am curious.

  171. scribe says:

    Clot, #171

    Brazil became investment-grade about a month or two ago.

    They’re in an almost perfect, equal and opposite position re debt – de-coupled from the credit crunch.

    Ain’t that something? :)

  172. kettle1 says:


    i was being fairly general and somewhat rhetorical. The question of market accuracy is a complex one that is studied in many fields. Are there certain trends that you are aware of?

  173. NNJ says:

    We can become like Europe, rapid urbanization, high taxes, large social programs and a wide range of second class citizens.

  174. Tom says:

    Who pays what in taxes

    In 2005, the bottom 50% paid on 3.07% of taxes.

    Being in the bottom 50% means you made less than $30,881. In 2005 the poverty line was just under $20k. That’s a lot of people to be making so little in america. And it’s not all lazy people with 20 kids living on welfare.

    I don’t think we should worry about who’s paying what in taxes. We need to worry that 50% of people are so close to the poverty line and don’t can’t contribute much towards taxes.

    People making 30-62k were 25% of the taxpayers and contributed around 10% of the taxes.

    If you chart it, the people in the 5-10% range actually get a pretty good deal, those in the 25-50% contributed about 5% more.

    This is the first time I’ve seen that data with income levels put in.

    I don’t think it’s bad that the top 5% pay more. Especially not the top 1%.

    If you’re making that much, especially if you’re making much more than that, like most big executives, a lot of what you’re making is off of the work of others. Either through investments or their employment or whatever. I can’t think of many rockstar ceo’s that are still around in the larger companies, but they all think they should be paid like rockstar ceo’s when they’re not delivering rockstar results. Sometimes they just pretend to for a while, take their bonuses until someone discovers the truth.

    It’s like when you see the illegal landscapers. By hiring them instead of legal workers, it’s easier to pay more for the accountant, the secretary and the owner’s new house and truck.

    Then claim we’re part of a global economy to justify the amount of outsourcing, throw money at the low to middle class so they can buy houses that are bought and sold many times over.

    What we need to do is improve the quality of everyone’s life.

    I’m rambling again.

  175. John says:

    The problem is you guys view the rich as always rich and the poor as always poor. many a millionaire is self made or has gone bankrupt along the way. Many a poor person today will be well off ten years from now. Unless you are retired on a fixed income who knows.

    Funnny part all the subprime sludge who made millionaires over the last few years who just got laid off got the bush tax cuts when they were making money and now the Obama hand outs now they are broke, life is sweet sometimes.

  176. scribe says:

    FBI news conference this afternoon.

    They’ve arrested about 300 “real estate players.”

    A sting that started around March 1. Apprehensions in a number of spots including Chicago, Miami, Atlanta.

  177. Stu says:


    I couldn’t stand Clinton and his cigar antics were a huge turn off for me. Hillary should have dumped his butt in the white house. Had she done this, who knows if Obama would even be a current event today. The only thing I respect Clinton for was his ability to convert a deficit into a surplus. Now let’s discuss recent Republican accolades. See if you can find a single one.

  178. skep-tic says:

    the solution (in my view) to income stratification is to make the avenues of success more available and transparent to all Americans. This means drastically restructuring and improving our education system (a probably unrealistic goal in the short term). In other words, the solution is to provide more opportunities for success, rather than punitive measures against the successful. I understand that reforming education would likely entail more taxes, but I think the bulk of the reform could be achieved by simply restructing how the billions upon billions of education dollars are currently spent. Bottom line is that I have no problem with income stratification per se as long as I am reasonably convinced that their are sufficient opportunities for the skilled and hardworking members of the underclass (and middle) to move up the latter

  179. BC Bob says:

    “Are there certain trends that you are aware of?”


    When spreads flip, close to expiration, it gets my attention. Again, talking short term.

  180. Stu says:

    “is the market always right?”

    If your on the right side of it, it is! :P

  181. BC Bob says:

    Here it is, 30% off. I guess it’s not a best seller?

  182. 3b says:

    #159 skeptic:affords you a 3 BR apartment in NYC.

    That too is changing. NYC real estate prices are fallimng just like most other places.

  183. schabadoo says:

    the Obama hand outs

    You seem to be veering off your ‘old white geezer’ styled rants to Bi-like predictions.


  184. NNJ says:

    Bear Brokers get arrested, Real Estate Players arrested, Ashcroft, Gonzales & Rumsfeld better watch out. Karma catching up.

  185. John says:

    Education ain’t going to make you rich. Look at our tanned poster boy for subprime, Angelo, he is a good old Bronx boy. Most kids don’t get ahead cause their parents did not raise them right. Stuff like sending a thank you note after an interview, wearing the proper clothes, networking and minding your p’s and q’s are important once you get your sheepskin and the majority of stuck in their career people is not a result of their education but their lack of common sense. To them there is nothing common about common sense.

  186. 3b says:

    #170 NNJ: doubtful those will be the numbers this year, when we get to the end of this year.

  187. kettle1 says:


    the income stratification issue would be an interesting debate to have at a GTG, i think it goes a little too deep to really dive into it here. But i do disagree with I have no problem with income stratification per se as long as I am reasonably convinced that their are sufficient opportunities for the skilled and hardworking members of the underclass (and middle) to move up the latter

  188. SG says:

    John: To them there is nothing common about common sense.

    Lot of your posts seem to miss them as well. :-)

  189. skep-tic says:


    Kettle– agree to disagree. I respect your point of view.

  190. NNJ says:

    190, 3b, we have seen this song and dance multiple times. Wall-street comes back stronger and richer than ever. Maybe not this year, or next, but soon after.

  191. SG says:

    RE bubble in emerging markets. The article is on outsourcing, but here is RE related comments.

    Saksena noted that real estate in the Bangalore area has appreciated so fast that it is currently comparable in cost to property in the Boston area and research and development costs have also rapidly increased on the subcontinent.

  192. John says:

    Short Sale Mansion of day. Up the block from Billy Joel and his child bride!!!!

  193. Stu says:

    Kettle1, BC Bob,

    I guess 2005 was not to early to invest in Nabors the NG driller. Now if you look at what their CEO makes, you would puke!!!

    Energy bills in the NG-dominated Northeast could very well triple this year. Compare current NG prices to the NG prices in the supply shortage of 2005 which caused our winter bills to double.

    NG build was under 57BCF for the past week. The chart below has not been updated.

    Now how do you get off the gas grid?

  194. Stu says:

    Kettle1, BC Bob,

    I guess 2005 was not to early to invest in Nabors the NG driller. Now if you look at what their CEO makes, you would puke!!!

    Energy bills in the NG-dominated Northeast could very well triple this year. Compare current NG prices to the NG prices in the supply shortage of 2005 which caused our winter bills to double.

    NG build was under 57BCF for the past week. The chart below has not been updated.

    Now how do you get off the gas grid?

  195. Victorian says:

    China to Dramatically Raise Gas, Diesel Prices

    “China’s chief economic planning body, the National Development and Reform Commission, said gasoline and diesel would go up by 1000 yuan or $145 per ton — 17 and 18 percent respectively. Aviation fuel, meanwhile, would rise by 1,500 yuan or $218 per ton.”

    Does this signal the end of the oil boom – at least in the short term?

  196. 3b says:

    #194 NNJ: Not this time around,Oh it will come back, but not stronger, and it will not be for years IMO.

    These write downs have had a devastating effect, financially,and psychiologically It ain’t about us any more.

    No we are going to see a nasty repeat and worse of NYC real estate from the early 90’s.

  197. BC Bob says:

    “Wall-street comes back stronger and richer than ever.”


    Did you discuss this with the fed? Unless the crap is passed on to us, remember they are loans. When was the last time WS bounced back stonger/richer after the fed welcomed the IB’s in?

  198. Tom says:

    183 skeptic

    I agree with you there. The problem is making that happen.

    There are a lot of stupid people out there but the majority are just ignorant. People don’t understand the difference between being wealthy and having a large income. When you’re making less than 100k and you’re first home purchase is over 600k you’re never going to be wealthy.

    People need to refocus their priorities towards building personal wealth. Unfortunately recently a lot of people were convinced wealth would come with home ownership. Too bad it was someone else’s wealth.

    We live in a free market which gives a lot of power to the consumer. People don’t use that power. They have a “what are you gonna do attitude”. Gas prices getting too high? Buy less gas. House prices getting too high? Don’t say “let me jump in on this” stop buying houses. Tired of worrying if your kids are going to get sick from their toys, stop buying imported toys. Generations of people grew up to do amazing things that didn’t need brightly colored plastic noisemakers to stimulate their minds.

    Too many people live outside their means because they think they have to. And it seems to be the people that don’t have the most to spend, that spend on things that don’t provide any real return.

  199. Rich In NNJ says:

    NNJJEFF (145),

    Under contract with an estimated closing date of 8/11

  200. PGC says:

    #134 Strawman

    “In fact the vast majority of people pay nothing”

    Should that start with “Read my lips …”

    I seem to pay a lot of taxes and as I pay for all my purchases with post tax money, so when I pay sales tax, gas tax, levys, surcharges etc, I get double dipped.

  201. Confused In NJ says:

    Nice Chatham House for rent (MLS #: 2508859), only $11,750 a month.

  202. Jamey says:


    Not myth, a lie. And John knows it.

  203. kettle1 says:

    tom skeptic

    i agree with the education aspect, but look at education today, everything that tom pointed out as a problem is activly taught or condoned in schools today. Critical thought is the last think that is taught any more. I do agree that a rebuild from the ground up of our education system is a must before we can have a good chance at some of the other significant changes that are needed.

  204. Jamey says:


    Except that the women are hotter in Brazil…

  205. kettle1 says:


    Different points of view are a great thing, i also respect your point. The world would be a boring place if we all agreed. Besides 75% of what i have learned is by taking a position and trying to argue for it. I then find out how accurate it may or may not have been and usually learn a few things from the other side of the debate.

  206. John says:

    Re 204, you pay sales tax? Whatta are you rich? Food, most clothes, internet purchases and lotsa things you pay cash for there is no sales tax. I would say sales tax is very low on my list of taxes considering my car and tv are both over ten years old!

  207. bi says:

    Does obama have something to hide? why he is so afraid of these two hot muslim chicks?

    “At a rally for Senator Barack Obama in Detroit on Monday, two Muslim women said they were prohibited from sitting behind the candidate because they were wearing head scarves and campaign volunteers did not want them to appear with him in news photographs or live television coverage.”

  208. make money says:


    196 link not functioning

  209. John says:

    School is for Fools – Fiddy Cents

  210. John says:

    MLS Number 2055619

  211. BC Bob says:

    Speaking of taxes;

    Tax his land, Tax his bed, Tax the table, at which he’s fed. Tax his tractor, Tax his mule, teach him taxes, Are the rule.
    Tax his cow, Tax his goat, Tax his pants, Tax his coat.Tax his ties, Tax his shirt, Tax his work, Tax his dirt. Tax his tobacco, Tax his drink, Tax him if he tries to think. Tax his cigars, Tax his beers, if he cries, then Tax his tears. Tax his car, Tax his gas, Find other ways to tax his ass.
    Tax all he has then let him know. That you won’t be done Till he has no dough!
    When he screams and hollers, Then tax him some more,Tax him till he’s good and sore.
    Then tax his coffin, Tax his grave, Tax the sod in which he’s laid. Put these words upon his tomb, “Taxes drove me to my doom…” When he’s gone, Do not relax, its time to apply the inheritance tax.

    Accounts Receivable Tax, Building Permit Tax, CDL license Tax, Cigarette Tax, Corporate Income Tax, Dog License Tax, Federal Income Tax, Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA),Fishing License Tax, Food License Tax, Fuel permit tax, Federal Gasoline Taxes, State Gasoline Taxes, Hunting License Tax, Inheritance Tax, Interest expense, Inventory tax, IRS Interest Charges & IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax), Liquor Tax, Luxury Taxes, Marriage License Tax, Medicare Tax, Property Tax, Real Estate Tax, Service charge taxes, Social Security Tax, And tax on Social Security Benefits, Road usage taxes, Highway taxes, Sales Taxes, Personal Property Taxes, Use Taxes, Recreational Vehicle Tax, School Tax, State Income Tax, Unemployment Tax (SUTA), Telephone federal excise tax, Telephone federal universal service fee tax, Telephone federal, state and local surcharge taxes, Telephone minimum usage surcharge tax, Telephone recurring and non-recurring charges tax, Telephone state and local tax, Telephone usage charge tax, Utility Taxes, Vehicle License Registration Tax, Vehicle Sales Tax, Watercraft registration Tax, Well Permit Tax, Workers Compensation Tax.

  212. 3b says:

    #201 BC BOB:When was the last time WS bounced back stonger/richer after the fed welcomed the IB’s in?

    Good point, forgot to mention that. It is a whole new world for Wall St now.

  213. NNJ says:

    #201 BC BOB:When was the last time WS bounced back stonger/richer after the fed welcomed the IB’s in?

    Good point, forgot to mention that. It is a whole new world for Wall St now.
    You mean this time it’s different.

  214. NJLifer says:

    208 Jamey,

    “Except that the women are hotter in Brazil” – only on TV my friend. Lots of butter-faces. You see them from far wearing close to nothing, then they get close and 95% of them have the face of a neanderthal. American girls all the way!

  215. chicagofinance says:

    BC Bob Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 12:05 pm
    “going here tomorrow…it’s open to the public….$40, but you get lunch…”
    Chi, Forget lunch, it would be enticing if you received a one way E-Z pass, out of the state.

    Bost: It is going to be sunny and 75 degrees at 2:30PM. First day of summer, and the office is going to close at 4PM. I am going to be getting on the GSP at MP91. Do you know how hard it is go north from there when AC is 45 minutes max…………….. F——- me!

  216. Stu says:


    You are a moron. ’nuff said!

  217. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    U.S. charges over 400 defendants in mortgage-fraud schemes

    FBI says mortgage-fraud schemes resulted in $1 bln in losses

  218. Stu says:

    45 minutes max…………….. F——- me!

    Not on a Friday afternoon, unless of course you unbuckle your seatbelt and have a state trooper drive your SUV.

  219. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    FBI Arrests Hundreds
    Of Real-Estate Brokers
    June 19, 2008 12:08 p.m.

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation says it has arrested about 300 real estate industry players since March — including dozens over the last two days — in its crackdown on incidents of mortgage fraud that have contributed to the country’s housing crisis.

    One law enforcement official put the losses to homeowners and other borrowers who were victims in the schemes at over $1 billion.

    The Justice Department and FBI plan to announce the recent arrests — including apprehensions in Chicago, Atlanta, Miami, and suburban Maryland — at a news conference set for Thursday afternoon in Washington.

    More than 400 people are being charged in the sting that began March 1 and ended this week, authorities said. They include industry borrowers, loan originators and real estate agents. An estimated 50 people were arrested in the last two days alone.

  220. BC Bob says:

    “You mean this time it’s different.”


    No, it’s not different. The same arrangement was made in the 1930’s. Did you mean to say dead cat bounce?

  221. kettle1 says:

    Regarding the recent debate to lift the ban on offshore drilling in the US.

    The EIA recently put out a study…

    The projections in the OCS access case indicate that access to the Pacific, Atlantic, and eastern Gulf regions would not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices before 2030. For the lower 48 OCS, annual crude oil production in 2030 is projected to be 7 percent higher. Because oil prices are determined on the international market, however, any impact on average wellhead prices is expected to be insignificant.
    In 2030, the OCS access case projects a decrease of $0.13 in the average wellhead price of natural gas

    now why do we want do tear up sensitive marine environments and create environmental damage that will effect entire regions not just the state authorizing the drilling?

  222. Tom says:


    Education is really important but I don’t know what it would take to fix it. One problem is I think different people learn in different ways but we have one way of teaching everyone. At least each teacher does. Me, I think I’m what they call a tactile learner. I like to start putting things to use and see how they work and fail right away. If I ever pick up a book to learn something knew I don’t get very far before I put it down to start implementing what I learned and try to extrapolate what’s coming next based on the difficulties I’ve had. Other people will sit and read the book 2 or 3 times before even being ready to do anything with what they learned.

    I don’t know that you can even teach critical thought. I hope that’s not the case but it just seems like some people just get things and others don’t. I remember reading a book years ago that discussed Kaizen and I kept thinking “this isn’t just common sense?” And recently it came up with someone that just attended a presentation on it and they memorized the words but didn’t get the concept. I’m constantly amazed by things people do and say. There was a paper out of europe a few years ago basically saying incompetent people don’t know they’re incompetent. Not a week goes by I don’t think about it. Sometimes just to make sure I’m not falling into that category :)

  223. NNJ says:

    “You mean this time it’s different.”


    No, it’s not different. The same arrangement was made in the 1930’s. Did you mean to say dead cat bounce?

    I never underestimate the ability of wall-street to make money or the government’s ability to tax us or take us to war.

  224. watergapnomad says:

    I know this may have been posted before, but can someone tell me the total home sales in NJ during the last 10 years, broken down by quarter?

    Thank you very much :)

  225. PGC says:

    #210 Straw

    Your a tinderbox today.

    NJ is unprepared food only. I still have to pay tax on the shoes and all those other things that go to keep the Rugrats from DYFS.

    When you go on J& to replace you 10yr old TV, you’ll be paying sales tax.

  226. Tom says:


    since it seems we’re both on at the same time and I’m going to try sending this again if you didn’t catch it last time.

    I’m not sure if everything I said about gov’t involvement was right. I found this that was supposedly a rule encouraged by the bush administration to try and stop artificial inflation of house prices by lenders. But I’ve seen other things that say they encouraged things that led to the housing bubble.

    That was back in 2001 and the rule wasn’t finalized until 2003, and it took another 3 years for prices to stop climbing.

    All the money that’s going to be lost, we could have invaded another country. Not like a kill people take over the whole thing but I don’t know, maybe Mexico. We plant a few flags and say “no need to cross the border, we moved it for you, welcome to America!”. :)

  227. Rich In NNJ says:


    Check your email

  228. gary gump says:

    Does anyone know a good link where I could find recent sales in Bergen County?

  229. Rich In NNJ says:

    Fair Lawn FUTURE Comp Killer!

    2633158 Sold
    SLD 39-29 SUNDERLAND DR $455,000 9/29/2006

    2824931 Active (Bank owned)
    ACT 39-29 SUNDERLAND DR $399,000 6/18/2008

  230. njpatient says:

    218 Lifer

    That’s known as Block’s Disease (i.e., “from a block away, she looked great!”).

  231. PeaceNow says:

    skep-tic, 172—I kind of doubt that any of your three small-business scenarios would enable the owner to make a base salary of two mill a year. Maybe the small manufacturer, but a restaurant or a small consulting firm? They have to gross—minimum—around 6 million to yield the owner two mill before taxes.

    I think I’ve posted this before, but there was an excellent analysis of income disparities in The Atlantic a couple of years ago. If you can, check out the “parade.”

  232. John says:

    craigs list has free tv’s listed all time who needs J&R

  233. Clotpoll says:

    Tom (227)-

    “I don’t know that you can even teach critical thought.”

    Tom, you can…but (to shorthand my answer) it requires an education grounded in the Socratic method and true liberal arts tradition from Day 1. And, I think there is a physiological window that closes in the student at about the age of 17. At that point, you’ve either learned how to think critically, or you’re doomed to sheeplehood.

    American public education has failed miserably in this realm, as it has identified the greatest good as being achieved through: a) teaching kids how to take orders without complaining; b) consumer education (and constant stimulation of the desire to consume); and, c) perpetuation of its own bureaucracy.

    My own daughter is not exempt from the consequences of the above. She attends a “top” high school (N Hunterdon)- and the quality of her classroom instruction is good- but her homework, extra work, writing assignments and testing are all no more than demands to regurgitate facts. Dissent is not encouraged or allowed (a couple of C’s and D’s fixed that). Increasingly, her teachers rely solely upon Scantron/multiple choice testing, for a myriad of reasons (including, I’m sure, parent complaints over “unfair” testing.

    I fear for her mind as she enters adulthood. She is a lovely, popular and engaging kid who increasingly shies away from serious thought or investigation of the world outside her own.

    I hope I’m just being a curmudgeonly parent, turning her typical teen behavior into a much more serious issue…but I still have serious misgivings.

  234. skep-tic says:


    Tom– interesting info, but again I think this goes back to the broader point of just how much influence the gov’t has over markets. My view is that the housing bubble was like a runaway freight train that no one in our gov’t could stop, even if they tried

  235. Stu says:

    “craigs list has free tv’s listed all time who needs J&R”


    When RetardInvestor said that we are so cheap that someone would probably steal the TP at the last GTG, I think he might have been referring to you.

  236. John says:

    In south america the women under 30 are way hotter than the US, but then you notice all the short overstuffed tacos working at maids in your hotel are all over 30 you quickly realize that Baby Phat Becomes Middle Age Fat by 30 south of the border.

    The other thing that bugs me is what is with all those re-fried beans? Can’t they fry them right the first time.

  237. njpatient says:

    211 bi
    If I were any of the several intelligent, well-informed Republicans on this board, I’d find your presence (and reinvestor’s, for that matter) completely humiliating.

    The best thing you could do for John McCain’s chances this fall is to shut your pie-hole, because every time you open it you make your side look bad.

    Frankly, if I were Obama’s web guy, I’d say “you want to see who supports McCain and why?” and link to every last one of your spectacularly idiotic comments.

  238. BC Bob says:

    “Fair Lawn FUTURE Comp Killer!”

    Where’s Rock Chalk, Jayhawk.

  239. Rich In NNJ says:

    BIG Upper Saddle River FUTURE Comp Killer!

    2537930 Sold
    SLD 2 VALLEY LN $840,000 6/19/2006

    2723202 Withdrawn
    ACT 2 VALLEY LN $946,000 6/7/2007
    PCH 2 VALLEY LN $899,900 8/31/2007
    PCH 2 VALLEY LN $765,000 1/11/2008
    EXT 2 VALLEY LN $765,000 1/11/2008
    W-U 2 VALLEY LN $765,000 6/17/2008
    2824916 Active
    ACT 2 VALLEY LN $650,000 6/19/2008

  240. BC Bob says:

    Rich [244],

    What concoction are you brewing/drinking today? You’re talking approx 25% off, 2006, in USR??

  241. skep-tic says:


    Peace– those were just examples off the top of my head. Appreciate your perspective, but I still do not think they are unreasonable examples. I am sure we have all been in large, expensive restaurants with big bars that clear $20,000 for their owner on Fri and Sat nights. That would get you to $2M in income right there (pre tax). Moreover, I have worked with a transactional attorney who specializes in family businesses and can tell you that there is a wide variety of family businesses where the owners do very well. Most people who make that kind of money in the U.S. have their own business. They do not get press because the businesses are small, local or regional and privately held.

  242. Tom says:


    They’re arresting people now, they were talking about implementing rules back in ’01 By 2003 they should have been arresting or at least warning/fining people. Though a lot of other things happened a few days after they first suggested the rule.

    Not trying to change your mind, we obviously disagree.

    You have to admit it’s odd that the rule was meant to keep lenders from jerking around with prices of foreclosed homes, and now it’s being suspended to help lenders deal with foreclosures.

  243. John says:

    BTW I have way too much of this and it is free to anyone who wants it. However, I have been accused of spreading too much of this around already.

  244. kettle1 says:

    CLott 238,

    Hey,, i went to N hunterdon for a while!!! what are the popular drugs there now? it was acid and weed in the early and mid 90’s. last i heard heroin was becoming popular.

    Regarding tom’s critical thought piece….

    I think you are both correct. You can be taught critical thought but it is not an easy process that fits into the current standardized testing mentality. At the same time there are those who seem to inherently use the process of critical thinking from a very early age. I was the bane of most teachers growing up as i always questioned everything and rarely excepted “because i said so” The problem is that critical thinking is incompatible with the current system. Anyone who uses or is taught critical thinking will rip apart the modern education system in about 2 seconds flat. And as you pointed out clott you will pay a price for that in todays education environment.

    clott check this out. someone using the socratic method to teach 3rd graders Binary math

  245. NJLifer says:

    235 – Patient,

    I prefer the butter-face line, as in everything “but her face” is fine :)

    Or to expand on your point, the “good from far, but far from good.” line.

  246. Rich In NNJ says:

    Bob (245),

    Yea, but these people are wealthy. It’s but a drop in the bucket…

  247. njpatient says:

    244 Rich

    That CAN’T be true!

    25% loss (and counting) in Upper Haughtyville?!?

  248. Rich In NNJ says:

    Wood Ridge FUTURE Comp Killer!

    2623088 Sold
    SLD 225 FLORAL LN $555,000 9/27/2006

    2806696 Active (subject to bank approval)
    ACT 225 FLORAL LN $629,000 2/18/2008
    PCH 225 FLORAL LN $599,000 3/27/2008
    PCH 225 FLORAL LN $549,000 6/3/2008
    PCH 225 FLORAL LN $499,000 6/18/2008

  249. Rich In NNJ says:

    Bergenfield Comp Killer!

    2318265 Sold
    SLD 167 E MAIN ST $370,000 10/9/2003

    2639687 Withdrawn
    ACT 167 E MAIN ST $449,000 10/9/2006
    W-U 167 E MAIN ST $449,000 3/1/2007
    2736473 Sold
    ACT 167 E MAIN ST $399,950 9/7/2007
    EXT 167 E MAIN ST $399,950 1/19/2008
    PCH 167 E MAIN ST $375,000 1/19/2008
    PCH 167 E MAIN ST $369,895 2/5/2008
    ACT* 167 E MAIN ST $369,895 3/24/2008
    U/C 167 E MAIN ST $369,895 4/1/2008
    SLD 167 E MAIN ST $369,000 6/18/2008

  250. Stu says:

    Rich is showing some nice comp killers, the house across the street from me listed about $50K less than I thought it should be worth and the listings are showing some nice drops in asking prices. Has the residential RE implosion finally shown up on our door step?

  251. HEHEHE says:

    “Does this signal the end of the oil boom – at least in the short term?”

    Not at all.

  252. BC Bob says:

    Stu [255],

    I’ve noticed the same, big drops over the last 3 months. Somebody is getting the message.

  253. Stu says:

    And for some bullish news. The 30 year fixed rate has dropped from 6.3% to 6.29%!!! Buy NOWWWWW!!!!

  254. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (249)-

    Like that math thing. Smack and cocaine are all the rage among the druggies at North these days. Also, getting sh*tfaced drunk seems to never go out of style. Lots of DUIs out here where the kids blow a spectacular number.

    Not surprised to see my daughter pummeled early on this year for taking the other side of an argument in a paper. One of them was the flipside of Truman’s use of nukes in Japan. I read the paper, and it was very, very good.

    It came back with a “D” and no explanation. My daughter wanted to meet with the teacher and discuss it, but he refused.

    Unfortunately (for him), he is in my adult soccer league this Summer. Can anyone say “studs up”? I’m gonna see if I can send him somewhere for a little treatment (no co-pay, of course).

  255. Stu says:

    HE times 3:

    The funny thing about the Chinese 18% increase in oil prices is that when oil hits $140 next week, we’ll all forget that this will have the 18% increase in what the Chinese pay for it, built in.

  256. njpatient says:

    But real estate ALWAYS appreciates! What’s wrong with these people? Don’t they know that Ira is entitled to sell his hovel for more than he paid for it in spring of ’06??

  257. gary says:

    So, maybe the bloodbath is finally beginning?

  258. SG says:

    On topic of Education:

    I feel the areas that need improvements are,

    Financial Literacy.
    Listening skills.
    Working in Team environment.
    Practical experience.

    I am in meetings at so many clients, where even senior guys do not want to stop talking. In reality it should be reverse, where senior guys should be listening to ground realities and helping junior guys come up with solutions. Also we are too high on this MBA degree holder can be great manager thing. IMO management is something you gain thru experience, not in classroom.

  259. ricky_nu says:

    244 Rich – who in their right freaking mind would have paid $840k for that?

  260. thatBIGwindow says:

    Bitter renters!

  261. njrebear says:

    “If we believe the [collateralized-debt obligation report] is anywhere close to accurate I think we should close the funds now,” wrote Tannin, according to the indictment. “The reason for this is that if [the CDO report] is correct then the entire subprime market is toast. If AAA bonds are systematically downgraded then there is simply no way for us to make money — ever. … Caution would lead us to conclude the [CDO report] is right — and we’re in bad bad shape.”

  262. bi says:

    263#, it is true for oil price: 1) china starts to reduce state subsidizing for oil consumptions; 2) iraq and saudi starts to do us a favor; 3) americans drove 4.5b miles less in April; 4) macain starts to talk nuclear power and off-shore drill seriously.

    by the way, where is obama’s change message regarding energy policy? only think i can recall is he was keeping ask us to drive less but he is taking private jet from here to there.

  263. kettle1 says:


    quality education right there…
    I had a similar run in in college. I took the opposite side of the Palestinian/isreali issue in a middle east studies class paper. was given and F even thought all of my sources were cited and reputable, and all arguments were based off of sources. The professor was from isreal, but i cannot say whether or not that was the source of the issue. The comment on the paper was that i clearly did not grasp the real situation.
    Fortunately in college you have a few additional recourses and a complaint to the dean got it changed to a B

  264. Essex says:

    Under the heading of things I wish I would have thought of…..Apple sells it’s 5 Billionth song.

  265. BC Bob says:

    “So, maybe the bloodbath is finally beginning?”


    That 2×4 is under my desk.

  266. Tom says:


    That was a good link. It’s what I was trying to say in a short quick reply that was probably riddled with grammatical and spelling errors and only partially coherent :)


    Based on some of your recent posts I think you need a vacation. :) I’m not sure most parents can see the potential in their kids at that age. Too many other worries about dealing with teenagers.

  267. Stu says:

    “So, maybe the bloodbath is finally beginning?”

    We’ll have to ask Grim’s wife. Apparently, she is the only true indicator of blood-related things. I heard she has recently been spending a bit of time in the ‘streets.’

  268. kettle1 says:


    nuclear power is great and all, but you wont be seeing a single KWH from a new nuclear reactor for at least 10 years even if we approve all of the proposals today. And then what fuel do they use? if its enriched uranium then there could be a supply problem in about 30 – 50 years. the breeder reactors and other non U235 types would probably take longer to build as they are currently less standardized from what i know.

    I am not shooting you down, but you have to consider the timelines involved.

  269. Rich In NNJ says:

    Ricky (265),

    I’d guess a failed speculator who probably planned to do a knock down and new build on the site.

    Gary (263),


  270. gary says:

    BC Bob,

    My head is against the monitor, go ahead and take a wack.

  271. db89 says:

    182 Skep-tic: Agree. Which party does the teacher’s unions have in their back pockets? Which party favors school choice and which party flat out rejects it? The answer is obviously not throwing good money after bad but actually giving people educational choices beyond that which public education, especially in poor urban ares, can offer.

  272. njpatient says:

    “It came back with a “D” and no explanation.”

    No explanation is criminal.

  273. gary says:


    Whadda ya mean no? You saw how f*cking old I look, when does it begin?

  274. NNJ says:

    Here we go again, public money for religious schools.

  275. Tom says:


    That USR house is that just the guest house of the one to the east?

    I’m going out on a limb with my prediction, if in the next 12 months prices drop down to 2002 levels we’ve hit bottom. If not, in 3 years if we’re 2003+ a little more prices that’s a bottom.

  276. John says:

    Hey who runs hot/hot on their data center/back-up data center? Getting a lot of questions on that today.

  277. NNJ says:

    John, I thought you were some big-shot wall-street guy. Why are you asking back office IT questions?

  278. schabadoo says:

    macain starts to talk nuclear power and off-shore drill seriously

    Yes, clearly more talk will solve the problem. We learned this as Bush talks in favor of off-shore drilling.

    This of course follows his action of blocking drilling off of Florida. Or McCain’s action of blocking drilling in ANWR.

    If you could post your street address, we can get to work on building that nuclear reactor.

  279. John says:

    as eveidenced by my spelling and lack of world knowledge I can say I lernt zero in school. I have a nice graduate degree to hang on the wall and a few certifications that may get mentioned in my obitury but other than that it is about as useful as my boyscout merit badges. I went to boyscouts in the bronx so I take that back, my hotwiring badge came in useful once when I lost my car keys.

  280. John says:

    re 283 – SIFMA/SEC thing, they keep trying to push that nonsense since 9/11 and no one wants to do it. The keep saying best practice yadda yadda yadda but I doubt anyone is running fully staffed redunt hot hot data centers while they are lossing millions each month.

  281. Rich In NNJ says:


    You saw how f*cking old I look, when does it begin?

    Listen to you! I don’t know if you’re just being modest or fishing for compliments!

    Ladies, a little FYI.
    Gary stands about 6′ 6″, long mane of wavy, dark hair, steel blue eyes… I felt like a garden gnome standing next to him.

    Back to your question, when.
    I don’t know.

  282. John says:

    hunterdon nj lowest gas prices in country as a % of income.

  283. PGC says:

    #284 schabadoo

    “as Bush talks in favor of off-shore drilling.”

    The best comment I heard on this was from NPR. “If the Republican president with a Republican congress didn’t push this through in the last 7 years, it can’t be a very good idea.

  284. njpatient says:

    287 Rich
    post of the day

  285. gary says:

    C’mon Rich, I’m only 6’3″ and the hair is not as wavy as it looks. I mean, let’s be honest here… but nonetheless, I must say, you are fairly accurate with the description.

  286. db89 says:

    280NNJ– Why do you have to assume they have to be religious schools? In any event, is the alternative really better? If someone would rather send their child to lets say a catholic school with the money that is otherwise spent for that child at a public school who are you to say no?

  287. gary says:


    Admit it; he did pretty much nail the description, don’t you think?

  288. Tom says:


    I’m sure being the wealthiest county in NJ helps.

  289. 3b says:

    #232 Rich: Thanks as always.

  290. njpatient says:

    he did.
    You’re nearly as handsome as me!

  291. Doyle says:


    Well that ruins it for me… I enjoyed picturing Gary as a slightly overweight, 5’9″‘ish, Plumber looking kind of guy with a tad too much body hair. Oh, and wearing a Bavaro jersey from the 80’s of course.

  292. PGC says:

    #286 Straw

    “but I doubt anyone is running fully staffed redunt hot hot data centers while they are lossing millions each month.”

    Thats because you are looking at the wrong end of the business. They may be losing millions, but their fixed costs don’t change. The big upfront capital spend for Business Continuity would have been paid for in the good times and amortized. At this point it is just a run rate.

  293. njpatient says:


    separation of church and state is a constitutional principal that exists for the protection of the church, not the state.

    If religious schools get most of their income from the government (as they would if EVERY current public school kid were entitled to admission (remember, this would include the drug dealers and the other assorted troublemakers that private schools currently don’t admit), it wouldn’t take long before the government started telling them “teach X, or we will take away your funding.”

    As a rather religious person myself, I’d prefer not to permit the government to meddle in religion, thanks.

  294. njpatient says:

    “wearing a Bavaro jersey”

    Actually, that’s pretty hot.

  295. NNJ says:

    292, I am the taxpayer thus I can so no tax money for religious schools. The Constitution provides me with that right. You want to send your kid to cathloic school then spend your money, I don’t care.

  296. Stu says:

    OK bi:

    Nuclear? Don’t you think we should first find a place to store all of used Uranium? Serious security risk when you leave spent radioactive material in holding ponds in front of undefended power plants. I thought McCain would be strong on security. I know a load about nuclear and in its current state, it is not the best solution. I’ve personally toured many plants (sort of an old hobby of mine) and even got to check out the Tokomac in the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. It’s not cost effective, huge NIMBY issues, it is not terribly safe (from a security standpoint) and the government should not put a single shovel into the ground until they are serious about radioactive waste disposal. McCain is pandering.

    Iraq and SA do us a favor. Most scientists believe that Saudi Arabia has grossly overestimated the supplies in their reservoir. All the talk of increasing and decreasing supply is one big crock of poo. When it comes to quotas in OPEC, no one abides by them. Saudi is pumping out as much as they can all the time. Iraq, on the other hand, would need to stop bombing the pipeline between the oil fields and the port where it is loaded onto tankers. How do you see us “accomplishing” this “mission?” We can’t even make the green zone safe! McCain is pandering.

    Drilling off of our coastlines. Quite simply, there is little to no return in this. See earlier posts. McCain is pandering.

    American’s driving less? I suppose you can thank Bush for this. The devaluing of the dollar is the primary cause of our increase in fuel costs. Don’t believe me? Check out the size of the increases in Europe where the Euro is still strong. I’m not denying that speculation and demand in developing economies isn’t part of the equation. But I truly feel that our fed policy is mostly to blame for the double in prices. It’s simple math actually. McCain is completely unrelated to this.

    Admittedly, Obama’s ideas are quite minor in regards to his energy policy. Mostly it is just the promotion of clean energy. But, I would gladly take his realistic approach, vs. McCain’s stupid and shortsighted approach.

    IMO, the solution is to work as rapidly as possible into developing renewable sources of power. This may be a combination of technologies, but I’m high on NG. LNG is readily available and burns clean. It can be used to both generate electricity and power moving vehicles. The hurdle in storage safety does not appear to be insurmountable, like the construction of 30 nuke plants without the ability to safely transport and store the waste.

  297. Clotpoll says:

    Tom (272)-

    “Based on some of your recent posts I think you need a vacation.”

    No can do. If I vacation, I relax. If I relax, I might start thinking about what I do. If I start thinking about what I do, I might stop. If I stop working, I have to flee the country. If I flee the country, I won’t stop until I reach Tierra del Fuego.

    And, it’s cold there…all the time.

  298. Rich In NNJ says:

    Doyle (297),

    That wasn’t Gary, that was me.

  299. Stu says:

    I like Gary’s description. Outside of the facial hair which I possess, we have similar hair styles and physiques. I could stand to grow a few more inches…in height you perverts.

  300. NJLifer says:

    303 Clot –

    Tierra del Fuego has some very nice fly fishing though.

  301. Doyle says:

    Rich, LOL, that was good…

    Alright, I got it, New Gary = Strangely Attractive tall guy. Rich In NNJ = Tad too much body hair guy.

  302. JBJB says:

    “The only thing I respect Clinton for was his ability to convert a deficit into a surplus.”

    You keep repeating this but it’s disingenuous at best and a lie at worst.

    The reason we had a balanced budget during the Clinton years is because there was a severe standstill between the executive and legislative branches. This is not very hard to understand The reason we got profligate spending from 2001-2006 was due to single party rule. We are about to embark on that situation again. In which case I will guarantee you the budget does not get balanced. If you think the Obama handouts coupled with an idiotic congress is going to lead to budget surpluses, or anything resembling a balanced budget, I want some of what you are smoking and I want it now.

  303. JIM says:

    NJ teachers to picket on Friday, should get a lot of press, its for the kids you know.


  304. njpatient says:

    “The reason we had a balanced budget during the Clinton years is because there was a severe standstill between the executive and legislative branches.”

    No – the reason we had a balanced budget was because Clinton fought for his budget to the point that Newt Gingrich shut down the government in an attempt to stop him. Gingrich lost. Clinton won, and got his budget.

  305. Sybarite says:

    Is there a way to block posts by certain individuals like you can in forum-based sites?

    I’m tired of scrolling over a certain individual’s worthless posts and wish software could do it for me.

  306. Sybarite says:

    BTW, have you guys seen the latest NJEA propaganda on television???

    Apparently school-bus drivers DESERVE pensions.

  307. db89 says:

    299 njpatient — Thanks for the lesson. Check out Zelman v. Simmons-Harris, 536 U.S. 639 (2002) when you get the chance.

  308. njrebear says:

    Everyone is entitled to a bailout of some form.

  309. Tom says:

    JBJB so you’re saying the only way for the government to control it’s spending is for there to be such a deadlock between the legislative and executive branches that they effectively can’t do their jobs.

    I say fire the lot of them and bid out the jobs to a few law firms and accounting firms with 1 year contracts. Save a whole lot on elections.

  310. dblko says:

    AIG lists the Westchester-NY-NY area as declining market, requiring higher down-payments:

    Let’s say you have 100k cash and the old down-payment requirement is 10%, that let’s you buy a 1,000k house.

    Now increase the down-payment restriction to 20% and your 100k only buys a 500k house!

    Seems like down-payment restrictions should have a quite large impact on home prices, given that in the past people even bought with nothing down.

  311. 3b says:

    #232 Rich: Add the declines In River Edge continue. Another 12 months or so should do it.

  312. kettle1 says:

    STU, 302

    I would object to 2 of your points.

    regarding Nuclear waste:
    Yes, we absolutly need a real storage plan before going on a building spree. But, consider that if we go on a building spree then we need to ramp up reprocessing which will significantly reduce the amount of waste as a large majority of the spent fuel can be reused after reprocessing it.
    The current 4th/ 5th generation nuclear reactor technology can burn a significant portion of what we currently consider waste. SO while we need a disposal method we do want to maintain the option of reclaiming it. so dumping it in subduction zones on the ocean floor is perhaps not the best idea.

    Re Natural Gas/LNG:
    I hate to be rude, but are you serious? the global supply of natural gas is not significantly better off then light sweet crude oil is. that is like saying that the crack is killing you and you need to get off of it, so you are going to switch to meth.
    I agree with most of what you said 100% (although nuclear really isnt renewable)but i have to ask about these 2 points

  313. Stu says:


    I agree. Get rid of all of them. We would be too busy spending our new found money to go anarchistic.

    And thanks NJPatient. Sometimes the Republican lies are repeated so many times that they almost take on a life of their own.
    Like the fact that Republican’s are good for business and the market. Not since the 50s baby!

  314. make money says:

    Why am I not suprised?

    TRENTON — A Florham Park mortgage lender is accused by the state attorney general’s office of scheming with appraisers and title companies to recruit buyers for investment properties, promising “no money down.”

    American Mortgage Co., headquartered at 17 Hanover Ave., was charged as part of a statewide crackdown on mortgage practices.

  315. hoodafa says:

    Fed’s tough inflation talk hits housing

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve’s recent tough talk on inflation served notice to financial markets that the central bank was serious about tamping down price pressures, but it has hit the economy in one of its tenderest spots — housing.

    More at:

  316. njpatient says:

    313 db

    Thanks for resurrecting that law school chestnut – much appreciated, but I can rember Con Law just fine. I wasn’t addressing the Supreme’s interpretation of the constitutionality of vouchers, but rather the purpose of the separation of church and state.

    I’m not worried about the government foisting religion on me. Perhaps if my religion wasn’t the majority, I would be, but it isn’t, and I’m not.
    Rather, I’m worried about the government ruining my religion.

  317. JBJB says:

    “IMO, the solution is to work as rapidly as possible into developing renewable sources of power. This may be a combination of technologies, but I’m high on NG.”

    I got news for ya, NG is not a renewable source of power.

    In addtion, there is no way (not ever never) that solar and wind farms will be able to accomodate the energy demands of a world that is accustomed to the lifestyle we currently have. Not to mention the coming energy demand from the third world, especially China. This is a liberal pipe dream and a cop out. We have already invested billions in alternative energy research going back to WWII from the Boron fuels initiative to DOE Center’s of Excellence on hydorgen storage. We have very little to show for it in terms of real advancements in technology gaps. Investment in alternative energy, while good, is not by itself an energy policy, it’s a complete cop out. The solutiion to our energy woes will include all options for energy – including nuclear, drilling, alternatives, conservation, batteries, coal, CO2 capture, etc. There is no method of energy creation without enviornmental degredation to some degree. Anyone who tells you different is a hack with an agenda, which is where Obama and McCain come in. But Obama’s pandering to the enviro nazis on drilling and nuclear is a sign that he is not interested in solving the problem at all, it’s just appeasemnt to a different set of interest groups.

  318. Stu says:


    You are correct on both points. I was assuming that we are not talking about radioactive waste reprocessing. LNG is a better stop gap then wind/solar which are really only plausible (currently) due to government subsidies and rebates. But NG/LNG will run out as well. Right now though, I see it as the cheapest infrastructure to build out as we pursue other alternatives. We must get away from biofuels quick. They, like wind and solar, offer no gain in cost or efficiency over oil at $130 barrel. Environmentally, they are better, but as long as China will continue to burn coal with reckless abandon, it makes little difference to the environment if we reduce our carbon footprint in such a small way. If we try to reduce it in a major way, it WILL be bad for business. And don’t even get me started on clean coal! That’s much worse than my LNG argument.

    I am biased towards NG since I’m vested in it. I also think NG gives you a nice balance between green and economic viability. I don’t need to explain to you how important it will be to have cheaper energy available to explore alternative sources.

    Thanks for pointing out my short comings ;)

  319. JBJB says:

    “Gingrich lost. Clinton won, and got his budget.” Youe right, that’s why the dems got swept out of power for the next ten years.

    Clinton had to submit a resonable budget because he knew an egregious tax and spend handout would be DOA. That’s why divided government works best, it provides government that governs least.

  320. njpatient says:


    “there is no way (not ever never) that solar and wind farms will be able to accomodate the energy demands of a world that is accustomed to the lifestyle we currently have.”

    How are you able to divine the future technological advances in solar, jb?

    JBJB in 1965: “There is no way (not ever never) that a computer will ever be able to fit into a space smaller than the Walker Laboratory in the Cornell University Science Center.” And then he shorted IBM.

  321. JBJB says:


    Its called thermodynamics my friend. Give it a read. It hasn’t changed since the begining of time.

  322. njpatient says:

    325 JBJB

    ‘“Gingrich lost. Clinton won, and got his budget.” Youe right, that’s why the dems got swept out of power for the next ten years.’

    No. The democrats gained seats in the House in 1996, and in 1998 gained seats in both the House and Senate (which was an unprecedented occurrence for a “six year itch” election (i.e., the sixth year of a two-term presidency), indicating that Clinton had even better coattails than Reagan.

    You’re short on facts, JB.

  323. njpatient says:


  324. kettle1 says:


    i also disagree with your wind and solar statement. They both have technological challnges associated with them but they are both capable of providing a significant portion of our power requirements. Regarding wind,a group recently published a paper showing that if you interconnect wind farms spread over an entire region that a given % ( based on the location of the wind farms) will alwayd be providing power. this means that the usual “cant support base load” is bunk.
    No power source is perfect and all have concessions attached to them. oils concessions that we accept substantial pollution in return for energy. We wont fully know what the trade offs for wind and solar are until we build them out.

  325. kettle1 says:


    why not suggest some of the fatal flaws you illude to in regards to solar and wind? just saying because of thermodynamics is a cop out!

  326. njpatient says:

    “just saying because of thermodynamics is a cop out!”

    But at least it provided a laugh!!

  327. make money says:

    How the hell do you expect to make money when you have to pay 800K in taxes and insurance?

    You can cut cost on administrative and operating expenses but you can’t do anything with taxes.

    This state is sooo screwed.

  328. Michael says:

    DeMint and Dodd are not getting along…read here as to why DeMint is calling for a HEARING on the Housing Bailout Bill:
    Call your senator and continue asking them to oppose the Bailout Bill. They are notified of every caller concerning legislation and your opinion will be heard!

  329. NNJ says:

    This state is sooo screwed.
    As opposed to which state that is doing wonderful??

  330. njpatient says:

    “You can cut cost on administrative and operating expenses ”

    There’s a novel idea.

    You call Trenton and I’ll call DC.

  331. Hehehe says:

    More Dodd News:

    New York Home > News
    Commentary – Bank of America PAC money behind Dodd’s Countrywide loan

  332. Tom says:

    “there is no way (not ever never) that solar and wind farms will be able to accomodate the energy demands of a world that is accustomed to the lifestyle we currently have.”

    The answer is right there. Just like people that quit drinking, smoking or try to loose weight, it’s a lifestyle change.

  333. Tom says:

    make money,

    Don’t forget the $3,635,647 in repairs HUD expects you to make within 24 months even though you’re operating at a loss.

  334. kettle1 says:


    i need to lose weight but i dont want to stop eating twinkles and pizza and i dont want to have to exercise either!!!!!

  335. Tom says:

    “i need to lose weight but i dont want to stop eating twinkles and pizza and i dont want to have to exercise either!!!!!”


    I said you have to make a lifestyle change, I didn’t say it had to be a good one, I hear crack does wonders for shedding lbs.

  336. njpatient says:

    you accidentally turned off your sarcasm monitor.

  337. kettle1 says:

    no thanks, i will stick with meth

  338. SG says:

    Freddie Mac CEO on CNBC.

    His Guess – probably passed middle of it. The downturn will go till 2009.

    in 2005 – Buyer’s panic. No seller’s panic yet.

    He complained about how FHA will be paid $300 billion in new Housing bill.

  339. 3b says:

    #343 SG No seller’s panic yet.

    Really ???

  340. bi says:

    for your info, financials start to show strength among s&p sectors.

  341. Tom says:

    “you accidentally turned off your sarcasm monitor.”

    For simplicity, mons, weds, and fris I just assume all odd numbered comments are sarcastic and every 3rd comment I make is tongue in cheek.

    All other day’s it’s evens and every 4th comment I make.

  342. Tom says:

    patient I figured out the problem.

    One of my comments was marked for moderation so my comment numbers are off. My assumed sarcasm comments aren’t meshing with what you’re seeing.

  343. make money says:

    NY, Taxes in Staten Island, brooklyn, Bronx, and Queens are a joke for multifamilies compared to NJ.

    Not to mention the commute to anywhere around the city is a fixed cost of $70 per month via MetroCard.
    Hence, higher rents, and very close to 100% occupancy.

  344. 3b says:

    #345 bi:financials start to show strength among s&p sectors.

    Is this the same strength you have been talking about since last Fall?

    Financials and strength are simply 2 words that do not go together.

  345. BC Bob says:

    “for your info, financials start to show strength among s&p sectors.”


    Is this the old tape, regarding your same sentiment back in Jan and then again in March?

  346. make money says:

    SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — Washington Mutual (WM 6.35, +0.09, +1.4%) said Thursday that it is cutting 1,200 more jobs as part of the lender’s efforts to reduce costs and return to profitability. More than half of the job cuts — 775 positions — are in California and Florida, two formerly booming real estate markets that have been hit hard by the mortgage crisis. Another 270 positions were reduced in Washington state. The cuts are part of a plan WaMu announced in April to lower expenses by $500 million to $600 million, according to a spokesman at the lender. WaMu already cut 3,000 jobs earlier this year as it closed a series of home loan centers. The job losses announced on Thursday affect back-office and support workers

  347. kettle1 says:

    everyone ready for gas rationing yet???

    Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), member of the House Appropriations Committee and one of the most-ardent opponents of off-shore drilling (at 1115 said): “We (the government) should own the refineries. Then we can control how much gets out into the market.”

  348. kettle1 says:

    has anyone else noticed that the more time goes by, the ore our politicians sound like characters out of spaceballs?

  349. make money says:

    Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), member of the House Appropriations Committee and one of the most-ardent opponents of off-shore drilling (at 1115 said): “We (the government) should own the refineries. Then we can control how much gets out into the market.”

    he was on cavuto last night and he stated that he changed his mind.

  350. bi says:

    349#, 350#, i am talking it in very short-term. if you watch market as close as i do you can feel that strength. i bet it will be 5% stronger than general market in next few sessions.

  351. Clotpoll says:

    JBJB (308)-

    I think you are mostly right. However, it has to be added that around 1993 things got so bad that the bond market also forced Clinton to move toward some sort of sane economic policy.

  352. Clotpoll says:

    Vodka (356)-

    That’s an insult to Spaceballs.

  353. kettle1 says:


    I would image a friendly visit from the oil companies might have had something to do with that…… accidents do happen you know.

  354. kettle1 says:

    look at the woman who accidentally hung her self of the accidental death of the NFL dealer……accidents everywhere

  355. BC Bob says:

    “if you watch market as close as i do you can feel that strength.”


    You’ve been watching the markets closely for the past year. When has your feeling of strength/weakness resulted in a credit to your account?

  356. 3b says:

    #359 Bi: if you watch market as close as i do you can feel that strength. i bet it will be 5% stronger than general market in next few sessions.

    Talk about strength to all the people that are getting laid off rom then financial companies,a nd more to follow, many more.

    There is nothing on the horizon that indicates that financials will be turing around any time soon.

    With the exception of the commodities market, there is just nothing going on.

  357. chicagofinance says:

    I sure this seems like an anachronism, but I wanted to give you guys an upated on my Enron fraud class action settlement.

    There is a filing that is yet to be completed. From that date, it is expected to take about 15 months more for processing.

    Where is the pool of money for the settlement sourced? Behold, and it has the potential to grow.
    Enron securities fraud class action
    Defendants who have settled
    Total recovery to date: $7.2 billion

    Goldman Sachs, Feb. 2008, $11.5 million
    Arthur Andersen LLP, Sep. 2006, $72.5 million
    Kirkland & Ellis LLP, Sep. 2006, $13.5 million
    Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Aug. 2005, $2.4 billion
    JPMorganChase, June 2005, $2.2 billion
    Citigroup, June 2005, $2 billion
    Outside Directors, Jan. 2005, $168 million
    Lehman Brothers, Oct. 2004, $222.5 million
    Bank of America, July 2004, $69 million
    Andersen Worldwide SC, 2002, $33 million
    LJM2 bankruptcy recovery, 2004-05, $51 million

    Remaining defendants [as of Mar. 1, 2008]
    Merrill Lynch
    Barclays Bank
    Credit Suisse First Boston
    Royal Bank of Canada
    Royal Bank of Scotland
    Toronto Dominion Bank

    Former Enron Officers:
    Jeff Skilling, CEO
    Richard Causey, Chief Accounting Officer
    Mark Koenig, Executive VP of Investor Relations

  358. chicagofinance says:

    I’m sure this post seems like an anachronism, but I wanted to give you guys an upate on my Enron fraud class action settlement.

  359. chicagofinance says:

    fraud committed 1997-2002
    settlements 2005-2008
    payments 2010 or so

    fraud committed 2004-2007
    settlements ? 2012-2014
    payments ? 2016

  360. HEHEHE says:

    BC Bob,

    Make sure you check out The National at that concert tonight. Great band, guys are all from Cincinnati, friends of friends

  361. njpatient says:

    “i am talking it in very short-term.”

    Sure thing – your prediction has already run its course.

  362. BC Bob says:


    Are they the warm up band?

  363. BC Bob says:

    “Sure thing – your prediction has already run its course.”



  364. njpatient says:

    “Mark Koenig, Executive VP of Investor Relations”

    And Ex Yankee shortstop who, in a roundabout way, was responsible for Babe Ruth’s called shot in the 1932 World Series.

  365. njpatient says:


  366. Doyle says:

    I often want to jump in on one of these political – scientific debates you guys have. Then I realize that I don’t understand half the sh*t you’re talking about.

    Oh well.

  367. kettle1 says:

    Question for the group.

    If i wanted to purchase the house i am currently renting from the landlord, then what is the best way to proceed?

  368. BC Bob says:

    “If i wanted to purchase the house i am currently renting from the landlord, then what is the best way to proceed?”

    Stop paying the rent, buy it from the bank, reo.

  369. kettle1 says:


    ask questions then, we wont be to rough with you;)

  370. kettle1 says:

    in all seriousness, wouldnt you be evicted first?

  371. grim says:

    Stop paying the rent, buy it from the bank, reo.

    That is so evil it is beautiful.

  372. grim says:

    ?Then I realize that I don’t understand half the sh*t you’re talking about.

    Neither do we, you’ll fit right in.

  373. Doyle says:

    Thanks Kettle – Grim, I’m happy to read most of the time… State School Sales Guy has panned out pretty well so far :)

    When I reach utter confusion I ask questions in an effort to return to mild confusion, where I’m most content.

  374. kettle1 says:

    grim 380, 379

    any comment on that point. I have a pretty solid guess that my landlord is highly leveraged. Who would be called out first? him by the bank? or me being evicted by the court?

    Of course this is completely hypothetical as i would never be that underhanded, its just morally wrong!

  375. njpatient says:

    “Neither do we, you’ll fit right in.”


  376. Commanderbobnj says:

    JIM Says: (post #312)
    June 19th, 2008 at 3:33 pm
    NJ teachers to picket on Friday, should get a lot of press, its for the kids you know.


    I Like this reader’s comment the best:

    “…d016 wrote:

    How did this happen? Take a look at the school boards, they are full of teachers, every time they give a raise, they get a raise! Every time they add on to schools, they get to hire their friends kids and family members, this is the worst group of people alive, they make lawyers look good!…”

    Commandebob sez: HA HA !! IMO –very good response !—-These schools boards ARE full of teachers and their spouses..Do you think that they are going to be impartial when it comes to save the non-government school employee (Meaning the REST of us,,)property tax money? HA !

    I think it is time to remove this notion of local school boards and their sham and foolish waste-of-time elections…..What is needed is a COUNTY school board–,ONE for each county,–comprised of professional impartial citizens–well away from any collusion with unions, PTA’s and the like….This, combined with a voucher system should greatly trim the school budgets throughout New Jersey. The greatest portion of the local property bill is approaching 70% to fund these government schools. If this plan doesn’t get the required approval from our legislators, then an extra fee charge per student attending these schools should be imposed on the parents—A use tax, if you may..You use the schools for your kids—Then you pay extra in your taxes !——-I can almost guarantee that those parents will THEN look at those bloated school budgets a little more carefully when they see the $$$$$ directly coming out of THEIR pockets….

    Like NO-Bama says: TIME FOR A CHANGE !!


  377. grim says:

    Almost 400 comments on a Thurday?

    What gives?

  378. njpatient says:

    “What gives?”

    Generalized crankiness?

  379. njpatient says:


    “time to remove this notion of local school boards”


  380. kettle1 says:


    perhaps a correlation between a slow down on the economy and the number of blog comments?

  381. grim says:

    Speaking of 400…

    19 Franklin Drive in Bernards closed at $400k. Nice deal. 4br/2ba on almost an acre, not to mention Ridge. We talked about this one when it hit the market a few months back.

    Location sucks but what do you want for that price.

    How ’bout we talk prior sales?

    6/26/1998 – $339k
    8/17/2000 – $358k

    1.5% per year appreciation since 2000? Factor in inflation and this place just sold for less than the y2k sale price (real terms). Hell, this place is on a 1.5% trendline from 1998.

  382. Stu says:

    I read today that the financial sector just matched the 52 week low from 3 months ago. Bi is a genius.

  383. njpatient says:


    “perhaps a correlation between a slow down on the economy and the number of blog comments?”

    Yeah. Generalized crankiness.

  384. grim says:

    Just keeps getting worse…

    Moodys downgrades MBIA snd Ambac.

    Don’t look now, but here comes the next wave.

  385. re 313
    shutting down the government

    One of the most interesting political confrontations ever, I think. Clinton’s choice to shut down the most popular services was a master stroke. He knew that even though he need not have done that, congress would be blamed, just beautiful in a ghastly sort of way.

  386. lisoosh says:

    Hypothetical –

    Input on job that pays $50k. Entry level segue into new field which has higher salaries with experience and connections. Very family friendly, good people. Biggish commute though not earth shattering.

    Thoughts? Especially considering the economy nowadays, would it be wise to turn a nose up at any offer?

  387. njpatient says:

    Girlfriend of fund swindler Israel arrested
    Convicted hedge fund manager Samuel Israel III allegedly was helped by his girlfriend Debra Ryan in eluding his prison term.

  388. njpatient says:

    Depends on the personal circs, of course. I’d take reasonable offers more seriously given the current state of affairs (I’m in the BC Bob/Ernie Banks camp – it’s a great day to play two, and if the first game’s official I’ll be a monkey’s uncle).

    I like family friendly. I don’t like commute. How is the job security?

  389. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Evergreen Liquidating Ultra-Short Fund After 18% Drop

    Evergreen Investments, the money- management unit of Wachovia Corp., plans to liquidate a $403 million fund with almost three quarters of its assets in mortgage-backed securities after it fell 18 percent this month.

    The fund, managed by Lisa Brown-Premo and Robert Rowe, has lost 20 percent this year, second worst among ultra-short bond funds tracked by Morningstar Inc. in Chicago. Losses at rival funds, all linked to investments in mortgage-backed securities, have prompted investor lawsuits against companies including Boston-based Fidelity Investments, the largest mutual-fund company, and Charles Schwab Corp. of San Francisco.

  390. PGC says:

    #386 Commander Bob,

    How will these members of County boards be picked. Hudson Co Rules. That would result in even more corruption as the town board members move up into the county slots.

    Just add another job into someone’s pension plan.

  391. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Moody’s Downgrades MBIA, Ambac
    June 19, 2008 6:33 p.m.

    Moody’s Investors Service stripped units of the two largest bond insurers, MBIA Inc. and Ambac Financial Group, of their treasured AAA ratings, citing their limited financial flexibility and weakened businesses.

    Moody’s warned of possible downgrades earlier this month, just before Standard & Poor’s cut the AAA ratings of both companies’ units.

    MBIA and Ambac, among others, have been hurt by moving into the once-lucrative business of guaranteeing mortgage debt against default. That has since become a major negative as the housing market turned south.

    Moody’s cut the ratings of MBIA’s units five notches and Ambac’s units three notches. The outlooks on both are negative.

    Moody’s said the MBIA downgrades reflect substantial uncertainty about its mortgage-related exposures that hurts its ability to write new insurance. MBIA has posted $2.1 billion in cumulative loss reserves and impairments associated with its mortgage related portfolio.

    The decline in MBIA’s stock price would make it “extremely difficult to economically address potential capital shortfalls should markets continue to worsen,” the rating agency noted.

  392. lisoosh says:

    Patient – it’s with a non-profit and the position has funding already locked in so relatively secure. Entry level fundraising position with very “hot” cause in its field so there is a high profile involved, my sales background has good transferrable skills. Development/fundraising jobs with some experience can pay well and ther are alot around. Not as much as sales but less pressured.

    Commute is around 45 minutes. They are willing to give me flexibility around the kids and traffic so that is a bonus. Some other people there live near me so car pooling sometimes might be possible to cut down on gas costs. Willing to cut me some slack while I set up kidcare arrangements, no problem with my upcoming extended vacation. Offer onsite babysitting during short school breaks for convenience of workers (nice). Lots of vacations, good benefits.

    Negative – starting a fundraising position when economy is bad is a bummer. Then again many of these have already made their bucks.
    Other negative – hubby will have to cut some hours so that sucks, then again he is wiped so he could use some home/kid time.

    More money would be better. BUT I am not available for the kind of hours that a high paying job requires. Sales in Manhattan is lucrative, but the commute, expenses and just plain stress would be a major pain. And I don’t want the kids in extended care from 7-7. Part time work is generally miserable and pays badly anyway.


  393. njpatient says:

    I can’t wait to see this show!!!!

    New cable show seeks flippers in trouble

    Are you a stuck flipper? Flipping out because you’re upside down and bleeding cash? If so, the producers of a new cable TV show are looking for you.

  394. Stu says:


    Negative on Real Estate, Retail and Financials

    “In 1999, the total value of residential real estate in America was $10.429 Trillion. Today, there is total of $10.600 Trillion in home mortgages outstanding. ”

  395. lisoosh says:

    And yeah. If the economy keeps heading the way it is, a $50k secure job might soon look like nirvana. And it would be the second/third household income, not the family supporter.

  396. njpatient says:


    given your facts, it sounds like it’s not a bad option.

  397. njpatient says:

    404 soosh

    and remember, because it pays less than $200K, not only is it exempt from income tax and payroll tax, but you also get an exemption from sales tax and property tax and gas tax and etc.

  398. 3b says:

    #388 njpatient: Agreed. However, It will never happen in the Peoples Republic of NJ.

    For any of you folks who hav enot attneded one, I suggest you go to a local BOE meeting, and while you are at it, a local mayor and council meeting, and see what passes for rational discourse. Frightening, truly frightening.

    Like I always say,just because you coach Little League, does not make you qualified to hold one of these positions.

  399. 3b says:

    #393 grim; Tomorrow’s markets should be interesting.

  400. njpatient says:

    407 3B

    Yep – the more local the position, the less accountability there is.
    Most folks don’t know who their congresscritter is, let alone their town councilrat.

  401. njpatient says:

    speaking of commutes, ’bout time I start mine.

  402. 3b says:

    #402 njpatient; Perfect for realestatecrybaby.

  403. lisoosh says:

    406 Patient –

    :-). You mean I won’t have to pay ANYTHING?

    The job itself seems really nice, actually rather fun. They really really want me onboard and treated me like a seasoned professional, not a cog in a wheel, which has it’s own value. I’ve done the corporate thing and absolutely hated it. They also include trips abroad with lots of spoiling for “moral and training” and honestly, who wouldn’t enjoy that?

    Biggest bummer is the distance, due to having to organize the kids around the commute and the disruption in hubbies money making activities. If it was next door I wouldn’t think twice and we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

  404. Clotpoll says:

    ‘boken (394)-

    “Cynical” is the word that comes to mind.

  405. Commanderbobnj says:


    PGC Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 7:38 pm
    #386 Commander Bob,

    “…How will these members of County boards be picked. Hudson Co Rules. That would result in even more corruption as the town board members move up into the county slots.

    Just add another job into someone’s pension…”

    I agree that Hudson (and Essex Counties),considering their corrupt past (and present–) would be a problem. Maybe state licensing similar to what we have in government building depts and professional engineering would be necessary to limit the inept and criminal element. There have always been and will ALWAYS be numerous rogue characters in government bureaucracy. Apparently ,that’s what keeps the Chris Christie’s of the world busy in the prosecution business.

    Sure, The concept that I had proposed would have to be fine-tuned a bit. But IMO,it is in many ways better than what we have now!——The way I see it is:
    The ‘foxes’ are now TOO CLOSE to the hen house..


  406. baghdad bob says:

    #395 lishoosh,

    If you are interested in it you should seriously consider taking it. I think you’ve been a stay at home parent for a while. It’s hard to get back in the work force after a multi year break. I was out for 3 years as a stay a home dad. Took me over 3 months to find something that paid decent.

  407. skep-tic says:


    I am a CT resident and have already called and emailed Dodd’s office about this bill before the “Friends of Angelo” story broke. Dodd could give a sh*t what I think. As long as he gets to go sailing with Ted Kennedy on his yacht in Cape Cod and keeps getting the perks of office like his special mortgages (2 of them) from people like Mozilo, he is right where he wants to be politically. The brazeness of people like him is truly shocking

  408. Stu says:

    Special meeting was announced for the Montclair town council to vote on next year’s budget. Meeting time? This Friday night! I will be there. Check out this snippet from last night’s meeting.

    “The mayor expressed disappointment with the budget proposal due to findings yesterday that the impact of the school board budget on taxpayers is 2 points higher than originally anticipated. Apparently, the school board was originally working with incorrect property valuation figures. The approved school budget was originally calculated to result in a 4.72% increase to taxpayers. With the new numbers the council just received, it has jumped to 6.72%.”

    This is a huge difference!

  409. bairen says:

    Let the perp walks begin!!!!!

    2 ex Bear hedge fund managers get charged

  410. still_looking says:

    Doyle, just dive in…. we really are a friendly bunch… I ask some of the dopiest questions all the time and they haven’t tarred-feathered me yet :)

    on another note — gawd am I cranky! AND I have to leave for work soon…for the overnight shift.

    Keep having these fleeting thoughts of moving to Tennessee or NC or Maine… or, hell ANYWHERE but NJ.

    And my cat is sick. I really could use something to smile about….


  411. kettle1 says:


    ask them if the know what exponential growth is. you might want to use the charts i put up on my blog, as i used the recent montclair data to generate them

  412. still_looking says:

    also, a question.

    Am already significantly short financial…. any value to shorting retail (and suggestions of what/where?)

    And…. need a good precious metals ETF… and ideas??

    thanks- as always, in advance…

    and… All-Hype… where the F are you??


  413. kettle1 says:

    still looking,

    sorry about the sick kitty, i have one myself ( really). hope he gets better ;)

  414. All Hype says:


    I am effing right here! I own a gold ETF (IAU).

    Give me a call before you go to work.

  415. Rich In NNJ says:


    Sorry to hear about your cat.

    And having to go to work… but while your there you can find out who is a felon in your neighborhood.
    Felony Search
    No, my name doesn’t show up.
    But neither does yours!

    I can’t comment on investing, you know what with the felony rap and all.

  416. lisoosh says:

    baghdad bob Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 8:13 pm
    #395 lishoosh,

    “If you are interested in it you should seriously consider taking it. I think you’ve been a stay at home parent for a while. It’s hard to get back in the work force after a multi year break. I was out for 3 years as a stay a home dad. Took me over 3 months to find something that paid decent.”

    I’ve been out for almost 7 years and I was dreading the usual “prove you just weren’t sitting around watching soaps” and “prove the kids aren’t going to interfere with your job” questions and blow-off for either a career treadmill person or really cheap college grad. These people didn’t even care, just liked my experience and are willing to accomodate my transition back. The fact that it might take months to get a decent offer with career potential is definitely a factor.
    Good point.

  417. Clotpoll says:

    sl (421)-

    Start with the granddaddy of them all, GLD. And, if you’re a believer in gold, take the new State Street silver ETF, SLV. Silver always gets a parabolic boost when gold is hot. Both are nice, no-fuss ways to play the mo. I have- until recently- shied away from ETFs, due to the illiquidity in many of them, but neither GLD or SLV suffer from this. These are robustly-traded issues.

    All disclaimers. I also thought Portugal would take out Germany today.

  418. Hobokenite says:

    Wow, look at the huge # of craigslist ads placed for Maxwell place condos yesterday:

  419. DINJ says:

    Greetings all,
    I just received a “Now is the Time to Buy!” letter today from my buyers agent attached to the April Contract-Sales Activity graph from Otteau.

    The first sentence actually states that that attached report indicates that the market has reached bottom and is now stabilizing!!!!!

    Is there a chart that has been posted here that refutes this?

    Everything that I have learned here makes me very skeptical…


  420. kettle1 says:


    here are all the charts grim put up for may

    that should do it. just ask if you have questions on the charts someone here will have an answer for you

  421. DINJ says:

    Thanks K1! The first chart pretty much says it all, huh?

  422. kettle1 says:

    I would say chart 1 and chart 6 really ail the agents claim.

    have fun storming the castle!

  423. bairen says:

    #102 bi

    WTF? Obama wants to build mass transit systems in all the cities and launch an Apollo like project at 15 billion a year for a decade to reduce the US dependency on oil. The Republicans who only want to drill for more oil seem to be a lot closer to stooges for big oil.

  424. alia says:

    hubby’s not allowed to invest in etfs because of his job (and he says that means i can’t either.) …so i guess i wait until the new pawn shop opens up and buy shiny stuff from them.

    er, assuming, by then, all disposable income isn’t going towards beans. sigh.

    (doyle, i feel the same way. but it sure is fun being in the audience!)

  425. DINJ says:

    I would have been happier if the agent quoted this about the market…

    “There’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive. With all dead, well, with all dead there’s usually only one thing you can do.”

  426. t c m says:

    lisoosh –

    it sounds pretty good to me.

    a job that’s family friendly is worth a lot – and even though 45 minutes sounds like a long commute, it’s still relatively short compared to going into NY. also, although the pay is only around 50 and you will lose a lot to taxes(because you’re the second income, your bracket will be higher than it probably would be as single) , daycare and commuting costs etc, it still is worth it for the experience. one of these days you won’t have to pay daycare,you won’t need the family friendliness as much, and you can take your experience and get a higher paying job – if that’s what you’d want at that point.

  427. Pat says:

    After the discussions confirming that:

    -there’s no-chance-in-hell that we can ever develop alternate energy,
    -Obama is taking us down,
    -No, McCain is taking us down,
    -their wives are taking us down,
    -taxes are going up in any case,
    -stocks suck hairy moose balls, and
    -Gary looks like either Rich’s wet dream or a tall version of Jesus….

    I just thought you’d all want to know that Suzanne has been fired.

  428. alia says:


  429. Pat says:

    Is there a similar website for NJ, SG?

  430. njpatient says:

    435 DINJ

    But he didn’t quote that because he doesn’t know how to blave.

  431. me says:


    I’m at work now…. a lull, (a rarity)


  432. njpatient says:

    434 alia

    Maybe I work with your husband

  433. me says:

    Everyone- thanks for the thoughts… My cat: she’s 18 yrs old and really really tired.

    thanks for the etfs – gonna look some up…

    ugh.. back to work… stamping out disease and making the world a better place.


  434. njpatient says:

    429 DINJ

    “I just received a “Now is the Time to Buy!” letter today from my buyers agent attached to the April Contract-Sales Activity graph from Otteau.”

    I don’t think that chart means what your agent thinks it means.

  435. njpatient says:


    “I also thought Portugal would take out Germany today.”

    That’s only coz you didn’t know Germany would make such a big push to win.

  436. Rich In NNJ says:

    Pat (437),

    HEY!!! He looks nothing like Jesus.

  437. Hobokenite says:

    Hmmm…huge volume of craislist ads for 700 grove as well:

  438. Hobokenite says:

    must be the specuvestors running for the exits

  439. me@work says:

    everyone must be asleep already….


  440. me says:


    Sigh… see.. you get out of the ropes and duct tape and start committing felonies!

    For shame…

    I do *love* the site though… can’t wait to show Mr.SL the website.


  441. Rich In NNJ says:


    Just to be sure you know, that site is a spoof. I thought it was kind of funny.

  442. tom says:

    thatBIGwindow Says:
    June 19th, 2008 at 7:21 am
    That is okay, when Obama is president there will be some serious change, man.
    Yes I cant wait for the Hope and the Change.

    Like Obama said “America is the greatest country on Earth, lets change it”

Comments are closed.