Mixed picture for December new home sales

From the WSJ:

December Chilled New-Home Sales

Demand for new homes in December fell, as cold weather and continuing joblessness put a chill on hopes for a housing-market recovery.

Single-family home sales fell 7.6% from November to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 342,000, the Commerce Department said Wednesday, though it noted the drop was within the margin of error. December’s reported drop followed a 9.3% plunge in November. Meanwhile, on a positive note, home inventories fell last year, compared with 2008, but prices fell, too.

“The new-home market continued to wilt late in 2009,” Mike Larson, an analyst at Weiss Research Inc., wrote clients. “The buyers who are willing and able to buy are flocking to cheaper, distressed, ‘used’ homes.”

Home sales for all of 2009 dropped sharply, by 22.9% to an unadjusted 374,000, from 2008’s 485,000, as the industry struggled after collapsing from its multiyear boom.

“Overall, the housing-market recovery remains fragile,” BNP Paribas’s Anna Piretti wrote to clients. “Tight credit conditions, ongoing deleveraging, a likely increase in mortgage rates and a 10% unemployment rate all point to sluggish housing demand after the tax-credit program expires.”

Regionally, December new-home sales were mixed, rising 42.9% in the Northeast and 5.2% in the West, falling 41.1% in the Midwest and 7.3% in the South.

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302 Responses to Mixed picture for December new home sales

  1. grim says:

    Granted the error in the measurement is huge, so we don’t really know the number.

    And yes, the numbers tend to be very, very volatile. With large month to month swings being the norm.

    However, the strength in the (smaller) northeast new homes market, up 42.9% month over month, and 33.3% year over year, is worth examining.

  2. grim says:

    From the Record:

    Montclair debt a ‘time bomb’?

    Improvements to Clary Anderson Arena and other municipal buildings: $161,975.

    Buying and installing furniture for Montclair High School, and technology upgrades for all schools: $600,000.

    Refunding property taxes after successful tax appeals: $1.8 million.

    These are just three of the dozens of items that the Township Council placed on the municipal credit card in 2009.

    Last year, the council approved borrowing about $8 million for capital projects – large-scale projects or items – for the municipality and the Montclair School District, bringing Montclair’s debt to $181.2 million, a 150 percent increase from one decade ago.

    A recent report by the municipal Capital Finance Committee that focused on Montclair’s debt has some taxpayers skittish about what an author of the report called “a debt-service time bomb that’s ticking away.”

    Much of the problem, the report states, results from the $97.7 million in debt that isn’t permanently financed, meaning that Montclair taxpayers are paying only interest, not principal.

    Once this debt is permanently financed in the next several years, taxpayers could pay more than double what they do now just for debt service as they pay back the principal and possibly higher interest payments, according to the report.

  3. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    new homes? maybe cuz banks are holding all the foreclosed ones back…


  4. grim says:

    Northeast NHS market is tiny, roughly less than 10% of national.

    Northeast sales for December was estimated at 3000 with a RSE of 27%.

    This in an area of 52 million residents?

    The South area has approximately double the residents, at 96 million, but sold 12,000 over the same time. Their rate, per capital, is double the northeast.

  5. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Lenders Pursue Mortgage Payoffs Long After Homeowners Default

    When John King stopped making payments on his home in Coral Gables, Florida, two years ago, he assumed the foreclosure ended his mortgage contract, he said. Last month, a Miami-Dade County court gave collectors permission to pursue him for $44,000 stemming from the default.

    King is among a rising number of borrowers who are learning that they can be on the hook for years after losing their homes. Amid a crisis that stripped $6.4 trillion, or 28 percent, from the value of U.S. residential real estate since the 2006 peak, lenders are exercising their rights to pursue unpaid mortgage balances. To get their money, they can seize wages, tap bank accounts and put liens on other assets held by debtors.

    “The big dogs get a bailout, and the little man gets no mercy,” said King, 39, referring to the U.S. government’s rescue of banks and other financial institutions.

    While there are no statistics on the number of deficiency judgments approved by courts, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. tracks the amount banks collect after defaulted loans were written off.

    These mortgage recoveries rose 48 percent to a record $1.01 billion in the first nine months of last year compared with the year-earlier period, according to the Washington-based regulator. Recoveries on defaulted home-equity loans almost doubled to $392 million, the FDIC data shows.

    Deficiency judgments were rare in the 15 years since the last real estate slump, said Ben Hillard, a former investment banker who now is a real estate and corporate attorney at Hillard & Rogers in Largo, Florida.

    “The banks have been too underwater with foreclosures to spend much time on deficiency judgments, but that’s beginning to change,” Hillard said in an interview. “This is going to be the next big crisis.”

    About a third of U.S. states, including California and Arizona, prohibit collection efforts on primary residences after foreclosure. In some cases, homeowners waive that protection if they refinance. Most states allow collection on unpaid home equity loans.

  6. grim says:

    Not a lawyer, but I believe NJ limits deficiency judgments to 3 months past foreclosure or sale, and there are other restrictions.

  7. yikes says:

    the criminals are getting more brazen. robbing a jewelry store in the middle of the day in manhattan?


    scary stuff

  8. leftwing says:

    “The South area has approximately double the residents, at 96 million, but sold 12,000 over the same time. Their rate, per capital, is double the northeast”

    I would suspect it has something to do with the availability/price of land.

    As other posters have noted it is impossible to find a new construction 3BR/2BA ranch in NJ.

    Builders can’t make the economics of new construction work on all but the larger homes here given land costs in most towns. In the South there are swaths of land near desirable areas that are cheap.

    EDIT: I paused to go to the source data to see if they broke out average sales price by region and just realized these figures are all just p!ss!ng in the wind.

    Forget volatility of the numbers. The 42.9% increase in the Northeast has a confidence interval of +/- 61.9%.

    Meaning the real number is somewhere between a decrease of -19.0% and +104.8%.

    Might as well pull a Lotto ball and call that the number.

  9. leftwing says:

    One item of note in the details is that only 1,000 homes sold above $750k in December, and in each month last year.

    I think Chatham, Madison, and Harding have that many for sale right now.

  10. leftwing says:

    That’s 1,000 nationally.

  11. grim says:

    The 42.9% increase in the Northeast has a confidence interval of +/- 61.9%.

    90% confidence interval.

    I guess if you were OK with a 50/50 chance of the estimate being completely wrong (or right), we could probably narrow that down substantially, at least to the point of showing some direction and not straddling zero.

  12. leftwing says:

    Grim, LOL.

  13. Hey John-

    Here’s some evidence the bond rally is toast. State pension funds are beginning to pursue a leveraged strategy in them.

    This should end well:

    “8% returns are indeed unrealistic. Using leverage to achieve those returns is suicidal. If someone wanted to use leverage on fixed income or equities (on the long side) the time to do that was in March of 2009. Let’s take a look at a few charts.”


    “Anyone looking at those charts should be asking “Where’s the value?” Instead pension plans are asking “How do I get in with leverage?”

    There is no value here and that is precisely why pensions plans have to leverage up to get the unrealistic returns they expect.

    Corporate bonds, municipal bonds, credit bonds, high yield bonds are all fully valued and then some.

    Bubbles form when the Fed floods the world with liquidity. We have seen bubbles in technology, in housing, in commercial real estate, in credit, in equities, and now arguably bonds.

    That state pension plans are leveraging up is a huge warning sign in and of itself. That they are leveraging up in the latest “hot thing” makes it all the more likely a corporate bond disaster is just around the corner.

    Thus, it’s time to be taking profits in corporate bonds and equities, not leveraging into them. If corporate bonds collapse, I can all but guarantee equities go down hard right along with them.”


  14. Just for a little perspective on new housing, here’s some more from my convo with my brother in Memphis yesterday:

    1. In Memphis’ fastest-growing suburban county last year, an average of five building permits/month (all types inclusive) were pulled. This is in contrast to 300/month in 2005.

    2. My brother, (formerly) a developer, now reports that every single developer he knows in the Memphis area is out of business. I think his words were, “there are no more of us”.

  15. Colony Capital, letting their soccer investment go to hell. Guess they were paying too much attention to Xanadu. PSG’s fans are nasty when they’re winning; I’d hate to go to one of these games now:

    (ESPN, 1/27/10)- “Paris St Germain, lying a miserable 11th, 18 points off the pace, visit seven-times champions Olympique Lyon on Sunday (2000 GMT) knowing that only a good result can calm down their fans.

    At recent matches, PSG supporters have vented their anger at main shareholders Colony Capital, accusing them of not investing enough in the Paris club.

    “I understand your frustration, I accept criticism and I’m ready to hear everything,” Sebastien Bazin, managing director in Europe for Colony Capital, an investment firm, wrote to the PSG fans in an open letter released on the club website.

    “The club’s recent results are not up to your expectations or mine,” he added. “Like you, I suffer from this and am far from happy with the current situation.”

    Colony Capital would keep putting money into the troubled Paris club, who have won the last of their two Ligue 1 titles in 1994, Bazin confirmed, while welcoming other would-be investors.”

  16. freedy says:

    hey grim whats this 5k i can get from the state if i buy a home in NJ in 2010.
    should i hurry?

  17. John says:

    Kodak and Ford making money!!!!!!! Green Shoots, Bought EK bonds at 51 and Ford at 17, who needs charity checks from Uncle sam.

    Eastman Kodak the Rochester, N.Y., imaging-technology company, swung to a fourth-quarter profit from a year-earlier loss on 6.1% higher revenue. Net income was $443 million, or $1.40 a share, compared with a net loss of $918 million, or $3.42, in the year-earlier period. Special items netted to a benefit of 28 cents a share in the latest period and expense of $3.32 in the year-earlier period. Sales reached $2.58 billion from $2.43 billion. Gross-profit margin widened to 34.4% from 20.4%.
    Ford Will Be Profitable in 2010
    Resurgent Ford reported a profit for the fourth quarter and said it will be profitable in the current year.
    By Ted Reed, TheStreet.com Staff Reporter
    DETROIT (TheStreet) — Resurgent Ford reported a profit for the fourth quarter and said it will be profitable in the current year.

    Fourth-quarter net income was $868 million, or 25 cents a share. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had estimated 26 cents. Revenue rose 22% to $35.4 billion; analysts had estimated $32.6 billion. Fourth-quarter net income improved by $6.8 billion.

  18. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    This guy is a Great American:

    Better Off Deadbeat: People Get Into Debt, Learn the Law, Become “Credit Terrorists”


  19. #18 – Kodak … making money

    Sensor for the M9. They also released Ektar 100 in 120 format, pretty nice stuff.

  20. Cindy says:


    Check the 2009 U.S. Metro Foreclosure Data chart…9 of the top 20 spots are in CA – “among metro areas of 200,000 or more.”

  21. yo'me says:

    Lenders Pursue Mortgage Payoffs Long After Homeowners Default

    In states such as Florida, courts give mortgage holders as long as five years to seek a deficiency judgment and, if granted, up to 20 years to collect. Usually, they have the option of renewing the judgment if it’s not paid off within 20 years.

    About a third of U.S. states, including California and Arizona, prohibit collection efforts on primary residences after foreclosure. In some cases, homeowners waive that protection if they refinance. Most states allow collection on unpaid home equity loans.


  22. Cindy says:


    Another chart…”There’s Nothing Organic About the Housing Rebound”

  23. chicagofinance says:

    strumpet: Note, it isn’t all about investors….what about issuers? There are corporations that issue debt, and they are out there issuing mountains of it at “absolute” interest rates that are historically low. Corporate America’s balance sheets [if you exclude the large money center banks, insurance companies, and the sundry companies with government participation] are at historic levels of strength. It is a structural advantage for the United States that will serve us for years to come. The only companies that are not financed aggressively and appropriately with tremendous contractual terms are neck deep in cash. Supposedly Google has $100/share in cash…..not bad….but such facts do not give the myopic automatons at the Zero Value blog much of a target to spew vitriol and draw the ever elusive “eyeballs”…..the typical reader of Zero Value is the clownshow bearded guy from last night.

    14.The Condition-Code Red says:
    January 28, 2010 at 6:51 am
    Hey John- Here’s some evidence the bond rally is toast. State pension funds are beginning to pursue a leveraged strategy in them.

  24. NJGator says:

    Here’s a deal in Summit for you.

    GSMLS 2741304 60 Linden PL $599,900


    Sold 9/1/05 $952,500

  25. Cindy says:

    Roubini is soooo “mater-of-fact” about it all. Just in Davos, doing his thing.

  26. scribe, The Princess of Paramus says:


    how do I access that listing?

    went to GSMLS, but I don’t see a spot where I could input the number as part of the search function

  27. NJGator says:

    Scrobe – easiest thing to do is to search on Summit listings between 550 and 600k. This will come up in the list.

    Short of that, here’s the emailed listings I got this AM which includes it.


  28. scribe, The Princess of Paramus says:



  29. John says:

    chifi don’t make me bitch slap you. Bond risk is overstated. In 2006 when we had record issuance it was also a lot of Prviate Equity robbing the company, raise 1 billion to pay “special divident” In 2010 we had lets do bond issue at 6% to retire all high yielding bonds that are callable and do a special tender offer for maturities in the next 36 months. That is desirable debt. For was is an excelent example of this. Also banks with FDIC bonds that yield 2% retiring existing debt that at the time was paying below par was great. I love a new bond issuance!!!! Ford is doing it like crazy now.

    Corporate America has done a good job of cutting existing debt and re-financing at lower rates and extending maturitites. The US Govt and Soveign nations have done a terrible job. My juxapositon of day is Soveign Bank bonds went from 50 to 105 since the dark day of Lehman while Soveign.Countries bonds have fell like a brick.

  30. Mr Hyde says:


    In case you didnt see it last night:

    chart pr0n


  31. Off topic but very cool.
    NYCMap is google-map like app that has modern and 1924 vintage aerial photographs and allows you to toggle between the two. Oodles of fun! Both of my grandparents houses on SI are there in `24 but gone by `06.


  32. Veto That says:

    Hyde, i like it. Well done.
    Question. Your nominal prediction for cs ny is 57% from 2006 peak. but then you say 47% from here, suggesting that cs ny prices are only down 10%.
    Whats going on there?
    Nominal CSNY is down about 20% from 2006 peak.

  33. Veto That says:

    Bye the way, let it be known that Clot and Kettle are true blue fckng sadists.

    There is so much to be said for that.

    So many on here like to talk the big bad doom & gloom talk but cant back it up. Most here are fake phony doomers who will act like the world is ending in extremely vague terms but then when pressed for a specific forecast for home prices, they either wont have one or will say… 30% drop from peak. Well hello, We are almost there now, so you are really forecasting a recovery only you dont know it.

    Clot and Kettle talk the dark talk but ask them their outlook and they will back it up and tell you in detail how we are headed straight to hell.

    I totally disagree that their forecasts are even possible without the entire economy collapsing but my opinion is totally beside the point. What matters is these guys are way the fck out there and if they are even partially correct, the rest of have no clue whats coming.

    57% drop from peak? And Clot is expecting 1996 prices, which bye the way is really 1986 prices and thats not inflation adjustment bs, thats nominal prices folks.

    ok, maybe Stu is a man too – suggesting we are only half way through the crash.

    But the rest of you (me included)? pfff.

  34. Schumpeter says:

    Cindy (28)-

    That’s how he gets the girls.

  35. Schumpeter says:

    chi (25)-

    You know I’m not talking about AAPL, GOOG, F, MSFT or any other company sitting on boatloads of cash.

    I’m talking about banks, REITs, sovreign debt and the one-ply asswipe formerly known as USTs.

  36. Schumpeter says:

    USTs = asswipe

    Gilts = nitroglycerine (not my words, but Bill Gross’)

    Bunds = great for shorting when Europe bails out Greece

  37. Schumpeter says:

    What will Orin Kramer do?

    a) tell NJ to lever up and buy high-quality bonds of market-dominant issuers?

    b) tell NJ to lever up and buy the worst sewage available?

    What has been his track record (hint: LEH) in regards to the above?

  38. leftwing says:

    “Check the 2009 U.S. Metro Foreclosure Data chart…9 of the top 20 spots are in CA – “among metro areas of 200,000 or more.”

    Can’t be surprising. How can anyone lend in a non-recourse situation without at least 25+% down? Credit 101 – always ensure there are two principal sources of repayment.

    Strip out the assets/income of the owner and rely on the asset alone, you better make darn sure you’re absolutely covered.

    Kind of like the difference between a corporate line of credit (at LIBOR + 200) and those asset based lenders in the rag trade that hit you for Prime +150bp (which is LIBOR + 450) against 80% of receivables and 50% of inventory.

    These CA banks gave away the store and it’s coming back to bite them on the @ss.

  39. Veto,

    We, being NJ. Some parts of the country (Vegas, Cali, Fl, Zona) are much closer to their bottom than we are. By July and August of this year, it will be clear whether prices are still dropping or not. Anything before then is gubmint manipulated. If they extend the MBS purchasing and the tax credits again, then I think prices could stay flat to slightly lower, but inflation (without wage increases) will be eating away at your wealth so the prices will actually be dropping at the speed of inflation.

    Did you get a prediction from anyone who has purchased since the 2006 peak?

  40. Happy Daze says:

    36 Veto That

    Do I hear 1976? 1976 prices?
    I have a 1981!
    Going, going… gone!

  41. Schumpeter says:


    Please explain how a strapped pension fund’s levering up to try and achieve an 8% return in order to “get back to even” is anything other than a recipe for disaster.

  42. toyne says:

    #36 Gave you mine the other day.

  43. Schumpeter says:

    Stu (42)-

    I think we should discount any future effectiveness of tax credits for homebuyers. Recent evidence shows that it’s brought virtually all future demand forward, and now that demand is exhausted.

  44. chicagofinance says:

    Cindy says:
    January 28, 2010 at 9:35 am
    Roubini is soooo “mater-of-fact” about it all. Just in Davos, doing his thing.

    Where are the subtitles?

  45. Veto That says:

    Toyne – what was yours again? ive missed a ton of posts.

  46. Mocha says:

    Can someone please explain the whole “middle class are deadbeats” logic to me. I’m surprised that comment went unchallenged. Sounds like class warfare to me but I’m green.

  47. chicagofinance says:

    Schumpeter says:
    January 28, 2010 at 10:54 am
    chi – Please explain how a strapped pension fund’s levering up to try and achieve an 8% return in order to “get back to even” is anything other than a recipe for disaster.

    clot: If a trade can be put on, it can also be taken off – at any time. Also, a risky trade implies greater volatility. Volatility works for you or against you. That binary outcome is why it is quoted with “+/-“. You can look at the glass half empty if you want.

    Just remember, much of the reporting is focused on the liability (i.e. future pension payments) as if that is some well defined amount. It is not. Do you want to fix social security? Simple…..delay the full draw to age 70….done. Same thing with any of these pension…change the terms.

    Hell to pay? Of course, but “recipe for disaster?”….I am more cynical….I look at it as a “recipe for negotiating position”…..

    The big 3 auto makers brought the UAW to it’s knees…..well done!

  48. leftwing says:

    Market has bad feel to it.

    Let’s see what happens if we break 10,000 and 1050.

    Cloture vote on Bernanke just scheduled for 3:20p, which if successful proceeds directly to confirmation vote. Can’t be coincidence, day or time. See if this gives a late day bump. If it’s a reversal to positive territory I may jump in on some puts/sell some calls.

  49. “Recent evidence shows that it’s brought virtually all future demand forward, and now that demand is exhausted.”

    Evidenced perhaps by the recent drop in new mortgages started even though mortgage rates dropped a ways again? Funny how few noticed that anomaly earlier this week.

    I also like how Hyde/Ket pointed out the temporary bump in the CS data that we also experienced the last major downturn in housing. This also seemed to occur in the tech bubble burst in equities in 2000. There might be some herd mentality behind this phenomenon and I would suggest that someone ought to research it as soon as possible. Please give it a good name as well. Dead cat bounce is so lame. Perhaps we can call it the chump bump or the sheeple ripple?

  50. toyne says:

    #48 According to your charts we are down 20% from peak. Without govt intervention we would be down twice that amount. If and when govt ends housing support we are back to 1996-97 levels, only with triple and quadruple the property taxes.

  51. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [19] dissident

    He has his Nompound, apparently.

    NZ is a popular country for that. I know of one Fortune 500 family that, years ago, established one of their nompounds there. As for the family, can’t say (Hint: anyone remember Amp Corporation?)

  52. Veto That says:

    Toyne – 1996 – got it.

  53. Pat says:

    Veto, don’t be so hard on people who heard the whistle years ago, dug their holes, got firmly entrenched, and don’t yet feel the need to pop up for a looksee.

    Simply because cases are not being argued doesn’t mean that pompous prognosticators weren’t right the first time around. Silence can mean good-sportsmanship in the second half.

  54. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Mr. Market no likee the SOTU speech last night. Down over 1% this morning.

  55. Pat says:

    My best friend’s older sis worked for Amp.

  56. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [58] pat

    Then she would know of the family I worked for.

  57. Nom,
    The SOTU has nothing to do with the market nor does it ever have anything to do with reality. Quite honestly, if the iDouche had been a bit more interesting the market would have probably rallied today.

    SOTU – Rah, Rah, Sis Boom Bah

    Same for both parties since long before we were born.

  58. Pat says:

    naw…out of Harrisburg office

  59. Pat says:

    did anybody watch the FDIC community banking webcast this morning?

  60. Shore Guy says:


    I am waiting for the DVD.

  61. Shore Guy says:

    “Please explain how a strapped pension fund’s levering up to try and achieve an 8% return in order to “get back to even” is anything other than a recipe for disaster”

    If they win, they win. If not, PBGC steps in.

  62. Shore Guy says:

    PBGC, not half as good as CBGB.

  63. Shore Guy says:

    Obama is dead in te water unless he fires Timmy and Rahm. He needs a housecleaning, ala what Reagan did after Iran Contra. The question is, who will be his Jim Baker?

  64. Mr Hyde says:

    35 Veto

    Per the latest FHFA (NJ state) data (latest data is for 3q07) we are at a HPI of 503. peak value was 574.

    So yes, per FHFA NJ state data we are only down 10% in the state. That would make sense to me in broad terms, hence your constant frustration.

    The data does suggest that the NE tends to hold up a little better then much of the country, but not by an order of magnitude. That suggests to me that NJ is in store for a significant drop down ward that will put us back on track with the general trend.

    Also note that it is my personal opinion that the “real” trends are more informative then nominal trends, as the GOV can play all kinds of games to hide inflation/deflation, but adjusting for inflation/deflation, even if CPI or any other metric used is certainly imperfect, still illuminates the broader obscured trends.

    For example, the CS data barely shows any drop during the 90’s housing correction, yet look at the real effects, at the newspapers, talk to people. The 90’s correction was very real and very much felt.

    On the other hand, the CS data corrected using an inflation adjustment, shows a much more substantial correction, more in line with the reality of the situation that was seen on the ground.

    The current nominal HPI (whether CS FHFA etc)tend to show that we are 30%-40% of the way through the correction, yet the “real” data shows closer to 10-20%. Historical trends also fit close to the real data as opposed to the nominal data.

    if we really are 30-40% of the way through this correction then we could expect to be bottomed out in another 2 years and seeing a new boom starting.

    That idea alone doesn’t pass the smell test. A significant portion of “prime” and “alt-a” mortgages don’t even hit resets for another 1 – 2 years.

    On top of that consider the amount of foreclosure backlog in the system. 2 – 3 years before we see the start of another growth period is about as likely as me being on the cover of Sports illustrated Swimsuit Edition.

    Mr Hyde: http://i221.photobucket.com/albums/dd155/hrtofdixie69/hairyman.jpg

  65. #67 – Does it matter if he ousts Rahm and Geithner if Summers is still there? How many Rubin proteges are ready to fill those spots.
    He does need to get rid of staff and make changes, but they’re going to be nothing more than a change in appearance.
    How would the market react to Volker (or a Volker-alike) being appointed to the Treas? Dimon, et al. would throw a hissy fit and black mail the office via the DJI.
    Sorry to be so cynical, but the writings on the wall. No changes ahead, just new faces to spout the same words.

  66. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [60] stu

    Politely disagree. The SOTU signals not only the initatives but the POTUS’ resolve in pursuing them.

    I found it interesting that he triangulated twice in the speech. First, he triangulated a la Clinton to try to co-opt GOP issues, but then returned to his themes, which are not easily harmonized with each other, let alone the centrist issues he is trying to cover.

  67. leftwing says:

    “If and when govt ends housing support we are back to 1996-97 levels, only with triple and quadruple the property taxes”

    I’ve noticed recently in listings how exhorbitant some tax rates have become.

    A town with a 2.4% tax rate but with values 31% off assessment means the resident/taxpayer has an effective tax rate of 3.5% on the property.

    That’s insanity.

    Even with all the intangible pressures to buy that math cannot work. Something’s got to give.

    The irony is that the more people bail because of the rising effective tax rates the lower the values go, perpetuating the cycle and boosting the effective tax rate even higher.

    I guess John’s bond math will dictate the bottom to us, when values are off 50% and the tax yield is flashing 16%……

  68. Mr Hyde says:

    Mocha 49

    Most Americans,including the middle class have increased their consumption while also buying increasingly expensive homes over the last decade during which incomes have stayed flat in nominal terms but have dropped slightly in real terms.

    The gap between income and increased expenditures was financed through rapidly increasing debt load carried by all americans.

    Many people were able to pull this little trick off due to historically low interest rates on consumer debt. That was possible due to the huge growth in debt collateralization. Many of the collateralized debt instruments that allowed the historically low interest rates on consumer debt are now dead in the water.

    As a result consumer debt has started to become increasingly expensive and at some point interest rates are likely to go up significantly when the FED is forced to abandon its 0% rate policy (ZIRP)

    Once that happens and what is already happening is that peoples debt service costs are increasing. This has the double effect of stopping consumer consumer spending due to the lack of additional credit and then forcing it even lower as you have less money available each month since your debt service payments are most likely going up.

    The average american is broke, i dont care if they drive a BMW and live in prestigious bergen county.

    There is certainly some class warfare going on and it is a pointless fight. But at this point no one is willing to really go after the root cause. That being their own habits and the bloated government.

    Doing so means saying bye bye to all those nice juicy government programs. It means letting people and businesses fail.

  69. Mr Hyde says:

    Veto 36

    Love you too man ;)

    And i didnt bother to share my worst case…. :)

    I couched my prediction in real terms, because i can easily see nominal prices staying close to peak 07 prices in the intermediate term.

  70. Veto That says:

    “Per the latest FHFA (NJ state) data (latest data is for 3q07)”

    ok – you mean 3q09 right?
    yeah notice FHFA is not as volatile on the highs and lows as CS.
    But you are on record now for a 57% crash from peak. nominal.

  71. Nom,

    We can agree to disagree. I stopped watching the SOTU back in 96. I also came to the realization that both parties are really the same probably around 2000. This still does not stop me from rooting against an embarrassing candidate occasionally a la Palin. Although, perhaps it would have been more entertaining then watching Obama and the Dems flounder.

  72. Shore Guy says:

    “No changes ahead, ”

    If he does not make big changes FAST, the Dems get killed in November. While this might actually be good for moving sound legislation through congress and onto B.O.’s desk, it portends ill for the nation. We simply do not have time to dawdle.

    B.O. blundered when he did not freeze discretionaly spending NOW and did not announce the unilateral disbanding and defunding of a few offices. He also blundered bu not seeking a freeze on Medicaid spending. There are pleanty of places to trim there without cutting essential services. We are drowning in debt and even the poor need to pitch in; we simply do not have the same amount of money to give to them right now.

  73. Mr Hyde says:


    ok – you mean 3q09 right?

    Yes and yes

    I plan on filing for joint membership in the clotpound and the nompound. Perhaps i can consult for both.

  74. Mr Hyde says:


    that 57% nominal calc is a little inaccurate but i can stick with it.

    I mixed real and nominal numbers when i made that calc.

  75. RayC says:

    Amazon Kindle fires back at Apple!!

    On the Amazon Homepage

    Be the first to read
    On the Brink: Inside the Race to Stop the Collapse of the Global Financial System
    by Henry M. Paulson (Author)

    This will certainly send Kindle sales through the roof. And Apple thought they knew how to make a product sexy – this will bury the iPad.

  76. Painhrtz says:

    clot nom you may want to contract this kids services


  77. Mocha says:

    Mr. Hyde,

    I understand that easy credit and lax lending standards spelled/spelling doom for those who decided to enhance their standard of living (I too was among them for a short while). I would like to think that most American’s handled their finances appropriately and that this is unfortunately the silent majority. Which is why I come here for dissenting/unpopular opinion and not the WSJ or NYT. I’m sure you can understand my frustration when someone calls the socioeconomic class that I’ve been born into, currently reside, and will probably die in mediocre or deadbeat I can’t help but get upset. It smacks of elitism.

  78. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [81] pain

    Damn, gonna get me in trouble. Thought a Boston Univ. webpage would be SFW.

  79. Veto That says:

    Its almost impossible to have a reasonable conversation about that unless you can first define your definition of middle.

  80. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) — The Federal Reserve restated its intention to cease buying $1.25 trillion of mortgage-backed securities in March and maintained its pledge to keep interest rates near zero for an “extended period,” opening a rift among policy makers for the first time in a year.

    That should add a full percent to 30 year rates moving forward.

  81. Mr Hyde says:

    Mocha 82,

    I get your points. But i think what you are seeing on this blog when the “middleclass” (which a large % of this board would probably fall into)is ripped into, is frustration.

    many on this blog, but a small % in general have been responsible with their finances and their lives. Yet the spendthrifts get handout after handout that is for all intents and purposes punishing the financially responsible individuals.

    The odds of the middle class coming out of this siltation intact are not good. There may be a very small middle class like in Argentina, but it will likely be a tenuous position.

    you will certainly get the dissenting opinions on this blog and a substantial amount of info/data as well. You will also see the release of pent up frustration because this is generally a community that can see the other side of the coin, and that is the exception in the real world.

  82. Mr Hyde says:


    the scary thing is that this blog has better supported aeconomic predictions then most “mainstream” economists on the boobtube

  83. Mocha says:

    To be completely honest, I’m not sure anymore. In this state and in particular Bergen County middle class is a rather ambiguous/elusive entity. I get the feeling you would like me to offer you a salary range. Let’s say for the sake of discussion +/- 25% of the median income for NJ residents.

  84. Mocha says:


    I totally agree with you and share in the sense of frustration. You should see the sh!thole I am living in with my wife as we hoard cash. And for what? Now “they” could possibly get principal reductions. Like I said, I hope that you/we are the majority and that in time things will return to some semblance of normalcy. I just hope I’m still young enough to make the most of it.

  85. Pat says:

    Does anybody have stats on property taxes paid on inventory held by banks?

  86. Painhrtz says:

    Nom sorry it was fine here there were no naughty bits on myu PC

  87. Mr Hyde says:


    Hookers and blow may be enjoyed at any age since the invention of the little blue pill.

  88. John says:

    middle class in Jersey is around 150K household income. are they getting tax cuts according to last nights speech?

  89. toyne says:

    #89 Principal reductions (and I believe they are coming), will absolutely destory the housing market. How can any potential home buyer make a reasonable bid on a house with that uncertainity? Will also destroy current homeowners equity, if the guy next door gets 50K or more knocked off his principal. In short it will be a disaster.

  90. zieba says:


    I, like others on this board, echo your sentiment wholeheartedly.

    Median /bergen/ floats around 65K no?
    65+(65*.25)=65+16.25= $81.25K
    65-(65*.25)=65-16.25= $48.50K

    Are we talking individual or household?

  91. Veto That says:

    “will absolutely destory the housing market”

    How exactly do you mean?
    This seems backwards to me.
    Lets say im a potential home buyer looking for a home, which i am. What do i care if existing homeowner get some of their principal chopped off?

  92. Mocha says:



  93. toyne says:

    Well here is how I look at it. Lets say I by a house put down whatever, and have a 300K mtg. The guy next door same house same mtg gets 50k knocked off his mtg. How can I make an informed intelligent decesion to buy, when I have that kind of uncertainity to deal with? T

  94. Mr Hyde says:


    Because as a savvy buyer, you want a piece of they game. a principle reduction effectively devalues the home.

    if the value is set by market price it only takes a handful of individuals who receive a principle reduction to sell at a price commensurate with their actual mortgage to have just set the “market value” of similar homes at far below their pre-reduction prices.

  95. Schumpeter says:

    All I take from last night’s SOTU is that Il Duce is overmatched on every front.

    I think it’s under even odds he gets the Dem. nomination at this point (although a lot of weird things can happen between now & then).

    Still think my time was better spent watching Chelsea pound Birmingham last night.

  96. Schumpeter says:

    Pat (62)-

    Unless it features Sheila-baby in front of a firing squad, no interest here.

    “did anybody watch the FDIC community banking webcast this morning?”

  97. yikes says:

    RIP JD Salinger

  98. sas says:


    George W. Obmama

  99. Veto That says:

    Tonye, Hyde,
    I would argue that a princ reduction increases the chances that you will NOT have a foreclosed neighbor, therefore possibly increasing the value and/or stability of prices.
    There is no doubt in my mind that the princ reductions would work to keep owners in their homes long term but the outrage would be that we all pay for that bailout too.

  100. Schumpeter says:

    tosh (69)-

    Any change Il Duce makes to his circle of advisors will prompt Dimon, Lloyd, et al to remove their computerized permabid under the SPY.

  101. toyne says:

    #99 Exactly. And why would I want to pay more on a monthly mtg than the guy who gets the reduction. Also to make reductions work, the principal amount chopped off (at least in our area), would need to be at least a minimum a 50K reduction for any kind of meaningful change in monthly pymt. And even that numbber is low.

  102. Schumpeter says:

    plume (70)-

    Triangulate? From what position? His own party wants his head on a plate.

    Il Duce is toast.

  103. #102 – Just saw that… wondering how long until we get the story of what he’s been up to all these years.

  104. Schumpeter says:

    Veto (73)-


    Could you draw a little mushroom cloud at the end of my line? Or, perhaps Grim’s shark…with some little stick people falling into his maw?

  105. toyne says:

    #104 I don’t see how you can talk about prices being stable or increasing, with principal reductions as you have now created an unprecedented level of uncertainity in the market. And current/future home buyers throw themselves under the bus to keep prices stable/increasing??

    I just don’t see it.

  106. Toyne (106): 50K

    Who you kidding. 100K minimum. 50K = $280 dollars. $280 is not going to make or break many locals in these parts.

  107. Schumpeter says:

    Pain (81)-

    Thanks. You just restored my faith in America.


  108. Mr Hyde says:


    as i said, many people might try to hang on after a principle reduction, but it only takes a handful to set the wheels in motion buy selling the second they get a reduction and trying to make a few sheckles in the process.

  109. John says:

    principal reductions are great, there are too many damm highly paid principals already, will my school taxes go down?

  110. Schumpeter says:

    mocha (89)-

    If you’re young enough to draw down on a target and pull the trigger, you’re young enough to “do something about it”.

    This whole mess will get sorted out at the ramparts.

  111. Schumpeter says:

    toyne (110)-

    This really is a moot issue, since if principal reductions take hold, the entire financing market for residential RE will collapse.

    The only way you will be able to buy a house is with cash.

  112. relo says:

    113: Any principal reduction program would likely come with a loss recovery provision for the bank upon sale, no?

  113. #114 – principal reductions are great…will my school taxes go down?

    I lol’d.

  114. Mocha says:

    If someone has their principal reduced would there not have to be a sale of some sort recorded to have the property values of the area be affected? Is this what is being talked about?

  115. Just wanted to let you know that its not showing up properly on the BlackBerry Browser. Anyway, Im now on the RSS feed on my laptop, so thanks!

  116. Veto That says:

    Princ reduction would involve no sale. Maybe that is what is being confused here.

  117. Schumpeter says:

    The only way to alter principal balances that won’t crash mortgage markets and jam the courts would be to defer principal payments until passing of title, and then collect the deferred amount in the form of a balloon payment.

    I suspect even this would be a disaster on a grand scale, though.

  118. Schumpeter says:

    If we are talking principal forgiveness, 16th century here we come.

  119. Schumpeter says:

    Lackey, bring me my truncheon, battle mace and dogs.

  120. relo says:

    121: A principal reduction would also mean that banks would have to acknowledge a book value closer to reality.

  121. John says:

    Are there any Giant fans out there who drive Toyotas? I really want to make fun of you.

  122. Pat says:

    facebookspeak for the day:

    Well, I just made a batch of delicious fudge brownie cupcakes with home-made vanilla icing, drizzled with dark chocolate. I’m so grateful for my wonderful husband, who bought me new tupperware bowls for our anniversary.

    Now, I’m headed down to the local Reduction Office with the cupcakes to see about our mortgage modification. Thanks to all of you who gave me tips on securing the reduction.

    Funny, when we bought the house, we were given cupcakes!

    What a cupcake kind of world. Wish me luck!

  123. Pat says:

    My husband drives a Toyota, but he’s a Jets fan. Can you work with that?

  124. ruggles says:

    If real principal reductions happen on a large enough scale that they become news (rather than anecdata), none of your concerns will matter as we will be in the midst of a civil war. I envision Graydon screaming from his upstairs window as the family room burns beneath him. I of course have my hand firmly out to accept my due bailout…

  125. Veto That says:

    This just in.
    BC bob is doing fine. Recently cashed in some of his gold investment winnings, took 3 months off to live on a desserted island in the south pacific. Says hello to everyone and wants to reiterate his 40-50% from peak home price prediction that he has been screaming since early 2006 to be added to the chart.

  126. Juice Box Sean says:

    re: Principal reduction, as I said previously it was defeated in the Senate in the Spring of last year and it is going to be tough to pass it unless it is used a way to win the election in November by the Democrats.

    For some principal reduction may come too late, if it comes at all.

    Case in point

    My FIL was laid off 2nd time in a year, is being told he cannot collect unemployment again.

    Gonna be a long walk home for him, he owes close to 300k on a midwestern McMansion built in the 1990s when he spent 450k in 1996 to buy the place. It was quite a home for 1996 standards but is nothing compared to the latest 8-10k sq ft monsters built in the area during the last boom.

    I was running the numbers last night and checking comps for him, it seems a whole 13 years later the place is now worth about what he paid for it, not so bad it he can cash out and downsize however in the entire development only one house has sold in the last 18 months and there are for sale signs on ever 4th house down up and down the streets. The development has lots of airline pilots and out of work middle management folks who are bleeding though their savings to keep their homes and lifestyle.

    Only saving grace is an average home in the town that they grew up in a few miles away closer to the city is about 100k, so if they can get out they can buy a place outright to live in with no mortgage.

    Best thing for them to do was downsize last year, so they looked at lots of smaller places and prepped the house for selling but they did not want to give up on their “lifestyle” so they opted to wait it out. He got a job and then everything was hunky dory for 6 months.

    Right now he is looking for work but the industry he works in was decimated, some of the friends he has from work are trying to sell and uproot to another city, but cannot sell or rent the existing home.

    My wife and I will probably end up buying a 100k home for them to live in a few years, after they burn through all of their savings trying to keep the existing home and lifestyle.

    There has to be millions of families in this situation, principal reduction is going to be a hot topic for the rest of the year.

  127. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [107] clot

    “Triangulate? From what position? His own party wants his head on a plate.”

    How quickly we forget. Remember that after the Contract with America, Clinton triangulated and the left was furious with him for “selling out.” MSM wrote him off as “irrelevant.”

    By triangulating, Obama made issue grabs in the center, and on the right. Unlike “The Era of Big Gov. is Over” speech, he did not move to the center and stay there, but kept darting back and forth. Many pundits said that, unlike Clinton who had some moderate gravitas, Obama can’t triangulate like Clinton did. So we see what we saw, which is Obama triangulation: Carrots being tossed to the GOP to either get them to sign on, or to bait them into saying NO.

    Notice also how 1st half of speech was all kumbaya, and the 2nd half was a call-out to the right? That’s the darting thing again.

    I saw

  128. Pat says:

    Yeah, Sean, except your FIL’s buyers don’t exist.

    Or, they can build new for less.

  129. Barbara says:


    if houses in your FIL’s neighborhood have not sold in 18 months, then FIL’s house is worth substantially less than what he paid for it.

  130. John says:

    Well the jets had a good year so no. I do recommend you put the drivers mat in trunk for now or take out extra life insurance on your husband. If the unintended acceleration kills your husband my deepest regrets. Also if his seats are between the forties lower sideline first ten rows may I be the first to propose to you.

    Pat says:
    January 28, 2010 at 2:00 pm
    My husband drives a Toyota, but he’s a Jets fan. Can you work with that?

  131. Wow, Miramax is closing its doors. Nuts.

  132. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [124] clot

    “Lackey, bring me my truncheon, battle mace and dogs.”

    Under a TEOTWAWKI scenario, with no effective local governance, I predict a return to feudalism. Might I presume that you are in the same camp?

  133. freedy says:

    Principle reductions will begin soon.

    the only way they can at least try to save

  134. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Gotta love that American manufacturing quality:

    “To [see if your Toyota is at risk], look at the VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) on the small metal plate on the dash board by the windshield on the drivers side. If the VIN starts with the letters “JT” it is a model built in Japan. The Japanese made models are not the problem.

    If your VIN does not start with JT, it is made in the U.S. and has the accelerator pedals in question.”

    I have two Toyotas now, and was unimpressed with their quality before this, so this latest debacle convinces me that my decision to avoid Toyotas in the future is the right one as their value to cost ratio is no longer favorable. And if other Toyota owners think as I do, they have a major fcuking problem going forward.

    Wonder how Honda stock is doing?

  135. “the only way they can at least try to save

    We are not trying to save housing. We are trying to save the banks. Me thinks the market would be a hell of a lot better of letting all of these fools foreclose and begin renting. Sure housing prices would drop substantially until the vultures came in and true supply demand market equilibrium would then occur.

    Nah. No moral hazard in that and the fat cat banksters would stand to loose too much. Lets lob it onto the taxpayers in the way of bank bailouts. The rich can continue to exploit their loopholes. The rest of you can goes fetches me some cottons.

  136. Barbara says:

    how many weeks/months should a house sit at an ask before reducing the ask?

  137. Juice Box Sean says:

    Pat and Barb, yes I know no demand. I explained this to them a few times, but those midwestern folk are a hopeful bunch. They will burn through ever last nickle of savings as to not default on their obligations.

    I do remember the 80s bubble it took 10 years 87-97 last time for housing to return to mean and that is not inflation adjusted. I used that as an example for my FIL. Short memories some people have however, they don’t seems to quite remember it that way.

  138. Mr Hyde says:

    Pat 127,

    i REALLY hope thats not real…..

  139. Barbara says:

    sellers think that even in a down market, they control worth by refusing to go lower. A big staring contest. Only foreclosure will sort this out, too many personality disorders out there.

  140. Juice Box Sean says:

    re: #139 – Comrade most Toyotas sold here are only assembled here in the USA, there is a few engine plants here but most of the other parts are made in Asia.


  141. Nom,

    Know how else you can tell if your Toyota is made in Japan or domestically? Ask your mechanic. Many parts that are made of steel in Japan are made of tin or plastic on their American counterpart. Why can they do this? Mainly because we are too stupid to notice. Honda and Nissan does this as well, but not to as great of an extent. I suppose Toyota achieves greater economies of scale as they sell a lot more cars than Nissan and Honda.

    For what it’s worth, I would never buy a Toyota after the axle broke on my mom’s Camry back in 93. I was pulling out of a parking spot at Middlesex County College (had to fulfill my language requirement and as usual, all of the classes at MSU were booked up) and it simply broke in half. It completely wrecked the transmission and there were literally parts spread all over the ground under the car. The car had 27,000 gentle miles on it at the time.

  142. Mr Hyde says:

    Nom 137

    We already have a model. Look at much the USSR circa the 99-2000 currency crisis. For a period many urban areas were essential feudal states ruled by the dominant local bureaucrat and/or organized crime.

    The difference the russians have seen this off and on for the last 50+ years so know how to deal with it. That hasnt been seen in the US since when? i dont think the US since its inception has really had a comparable period.

  143. Painhrtz says:

    Nom heard Honda sources from the same supplier and may be planning a similar recall on electronic drive by wire systems. What was wrong with a throttle cable anyway. I’m checking our Element tonight basically if your car has a pedal with 7 bars on the rubber piece your in trouble. 4 bars your OK.

  144. Mr Hyde says:

    barb 144

    he who has the money (gold) makes the rules.

  145. toyne says:

    #131 unless it is used a way to win the election in November by the Democrats.

    principal reduction is going to be a hot topic for the rest of the year.

    Which means we will have princiapl reducctions.

  146. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [147] mr. hyde

    I was speaking more for rural areas. I can easily see larger farms and ranches becoming something akin to the plantations of the antebellum south.

    Urban areas would be gang-controlled, but in a TEOTWAWI event, I think urban areas would be untenable in any event since the gangs could not be the providers in the same way the rural landowners could.

  147. zieba says:

    I normally take what Schumpeter says with a grain of salt and a chuckle but with respect to principal reductions he is spot on; 16th century here we come.

    You thought corporate bailouts opened a pandora’s box? This would blow the roof off the barn.

    I would contemplate purchasing a metro card and polishing a large throwing stone for this cause.

  148. Mr Hyde says:


    the auto industry really needs to start doing computer system validation as they increasing integrate plc controlls into the cars.

    The modern drive by wire system are non-linear. That is they do not give the car an amount of gas proportional to how far down you pushed the pedal. Instead a PLC watches how you press the pedal and calculates how much gas it will give the engine. more of a PID system. Virtually all the major systems int he newer cars are like that, from breaks to steering to gas.

    not many people realize that in the newest cars, a computer decides how much to turn the wheels based on how you move the steering wheel not in direct proportion to how much you move it though.

    It all works great if you have done proper validation to find the bugs.

  149. #148 – What was wrong with a throttle cable anyway

    Electronic based systems are (or tend to be) cheaper to manufacture and are more adaptable.
    Cables are cheaper, but they also break and can get stuck open. I had an `87 Reliant when I was an undergrad that I beat to death. Around `93 or so it was an incredibly cold winter. Driving back from school the throttle cable would freeze up and keep the carb butterflys open even after I took my foot off the gas. Scared the crap out of me the first time.

  150. Barbara says:

    zieba, maybe also buy a NJ Transit card, NE Extention and Bergen line

  151. Mr Hyde says:


    the ironic thing is that if a nuke were detonated any where near an urban area today, it would be massively (exponentially perhaps?) more destructive. pre 80’s a large % of daily items did not have embedded computer systems. Now a large % of common every day items are computerized, even many things people may not realize.

    a ground blast would minimize EMP effects but the EMP radius would still probably be dozens of miles, more then enough to blanket the largest urban areas, far beyond what any physical blast damage would do.

    AN air blast, depending on altitude could expose an area with a radius of up to 500 miles to a destructive EMP blast.

  152. Painhrtz says:

    Hyde – but you and I work in an industry where if things are not properly validated people either get really ill, suffer a major injury, or die. Hey, other than the ill part the same can be applied in the auto industry.

    Didn’t the six sigma BS originate in the Japanesse auto and electronics industry?

  153. toyne says:

    #119/121 Here is the huge uncertainity again. Who’s principal got reduced who’s did not. Zero transparency.

  154. toyne says:

    #116 Why? We still have FHA?

  155. Mr Hyde says:


    i had a drive by wire system on an acura freeze up on me while driving. The steering wheel froze and was unresponsive for about 5 seconds while on the highway.

    was not a happy camper

  156. This is why I love my 95 Civic. Manual steering, manual breaks, manual transmission, manual windows, manual door locks and I still get $3,000 offers it from guys named Manuel.

  157. #161 – Wow, that’s pretty scary.
    Given how complex modern autos have gotten, and how easy software errors are to miss, sooner or later this is going to be an issue in the media.

  158. John says:

    The current problem stems from either poor brake design combined with no fail safe in the event the car has unintentional acceleration. Toyota first blamed the mat got caughte under brake pedal etc. But that does not explain how while brake is on car picks up speed. Then they blamed supplier that made brake pedal, supplier blasted them saying they have the design from toyota and they build it exactly as designed. Now Toyota has stopped all car sales. Newday interviewed potential toyota buyers and some said this proves they are great and care about customers. The others said I am going shopping for Honda or a Ford and if they aren’t selling cars in a few days forget about it. GM started they pay off the whole lease on toyotas if you want a GM car. Theory is my Camry Lease expires today, don’t want to extend, can lease new one. Plus there is a several hundred to one thousand in fees to end. GM wants you to take you camry to chevy, they take the camry return it to toyota for you pay all the end of lease fees and put you in a new mailibu that costs a little less. I may hate chevy, but the deal is tempting and while toyota is closed people will test drive the other models. Some won’t come back.

  159. John says:

    If I was fresh out of school looking for a car I would choose a 2010 Camaro, it is cheaper than a Camry. With the extra bucks I save I would buy a top of the line seven year extended warranty. Then I would smoke those tires, drive 140, and drag race it for 6 years 11 months and sell it. Screw that rice burning 36 month warranty camry

  160. Shore Guy says:


    The future of computer viruses is aircraft control systems.

    Especially after some of the airlines roll out in-flight internet, where the passenger network is not seperaste from the aircraft-control network. THAT, is a heck of a way to save a few bucks in aircraft costs.

  161. #166 – Shore – Especially after some of the airlines roll out in-flight internet, where the passenger network is not seperaste from the aircraft-control network

    I want to say NO ONE could possibly be so stupid as to design a network like that… but I know better.

  162. Shore Guy says:


    The problem, as I se it, is that B.O. better be a success or we are all screwed. The problem is, there is political blood in the water and both Rs and Ds see opportunities to feather their own nests at his expense. The only way for him to be anything other than a bigger failure than W (who would have figured THAT was possible), is to be BOLD. Unfortunately, even his “bold” proposals last night were insipid. He needs to realize that the fate of his presidency will be defined by what he accomplishes between now and July (maybe June).

  163. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [157] Mr. Hyde

    Ah, yes, Decaptitation Theory.

    One of the things we discussed in our nuclear warfighting seminar.

    Who knew that decades later, and after the end of the Cold War, an understanding of vulnerability to EMP would be relevant?

  164. Shore Guy says:


    It is in fact in production. I believe on the new Airbus, perhaps the 787. Maybe both.

  165. Shore Guy says:

    I remember being shocked when I found out that one can shut down a plane’s engines remotely. Being able to upload computer code patches from maintenance depots may be handy, but….

  166. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [168] shore,

    I saw that, and got the sense that the first part of his speech, where he called for unity and common approach, was also a call-out to the oppo to NOT take advantage of his weakened state, and a call-out to the Dems to stay the course and cover him, rather than run for cover themselves.

    His BOLD proposals were still there, but he broke them up into manageable bite-size pieces. That is the latest goal, to govern incrementally rather than how Clinton and he both approached their first year, which was to swing for the fences and shoot their political wads in the process.

    Now he, like Clinton, is very low on political capital. Unlike Clinton, he doesn’t have an internet bubble to save his ass.

  167. #170 & 171 – shore – …. *note to self* Never fly anywhere again…. unless it’s a DC3, those are probably safe.

    Seriously, you’re scaring me.

  168. John says:

    Tommorrow might be a good day to buy Toyota stocks or bonds. I think they are botching this whole thing. But remember they are 12 hours ahead, nothing will be fixed tommorrow so good time to buy. I think by Monday considering they get a 12 hour head start on us and will have time to digest fall out they may do some damage control. Bad enough Ford and Honda are stealing customers but when Chevy is stealing customers all weekend the Japs will attack like Pearl Harbor.

  169. Shore Guy says:


    You have NO IDEA how vulnerable the civil aviation system is to all manner of attacks. It is an area in which I have intimate knowledge. It is deeply unsettling.

  170. #175 – Well, I now have something new to add to the list of 3 AM fears.

  171. #175 – DDos’d at 30,000 ft.

  172. John says:

    Toyota is the automotive equivalent of Tiger Woods”, read one comment on the Autoblog website on Thursday. “Both are suffering historic falls from grace … They are drowning in their own arrogance.”

  173. Painhrtz says:

    Tosh I fly so much I just take every work insurance policy out. If the SHTF on a flight I’m on at least I have the piece of mind to know my family will get monetary compensation.

    hyde and that is what scares the hell out of me about the drive by wire systems, they don’t have the redundancy of an F-16. As far as an EMP is concerned, I have guns, a mountain bike with a trailer attachment, and a enough werewithal to get the F out of dodge if that scenario comes to pass. It would make the days following Katrina look like a few guys shouting at a tea party event.

  174. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Just got this from a Realtor.

    Visit us online at http://www.CourtneyOrlando.com


    As always I wanted to just send you what I am hearing and reading about the Real Estate market in New Jersey and financing updates.

    Here is an important bit of information for all of those that are contemplating buying a home in 2010 using FHA financing:

    Waiting a few extra days or weeks to purchase a home this spring could cost buyers thousands of extra dollars as the office of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) implements several changes for loans guaranteed by the Federal Housing Authority (FHA).

    Coming just weeks before the April 30 deadline for the Home Buyer Tax Credit and just days after the March 31 expiration of the Federal Reserve Board’s mortgage backed securities purchase program (which has kept home loan rates artificially low for over a year), these FHA changes make it even more important to act now to save big.

    Here are a few reasons why:

    On April 5th, the cost of required up-front mortgage insurance for loans guaranteed by the FHA will increase from 1.75% to 2.25%. For a borrower purchasing a $200,000 home with a $7,000 down payment, the up-front mortgage insurance will increase by $965.

    Up-front mortgage insurance is typically financed in the final loan amount so the impact to a monthly payment will be minimal but overall, the increase is still borne by the borrower both upfront and monthly.

    Later this spring, the amount of money that a seller can return to the buyer from their sale proceeds will be reduced from 6% to 3%. The reduction in these “seller concessions” can increase the amount of cash a buyer will be required to pay at closing by $6,000 for a home purchase of $200,000.

    There is only one way to avoid being affected by all of these costly changes that lie ahead – submit all FHA mortgage applications by the last week of March.

  175. Schumpeter says:

    plume (132)-

    All I saw last night was a one-term President about to get sawed off at the knees. And he doesn’t even see it coming.

    I thought I saw Pelosi drool, but it was blood running down her chin.

  176. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Pat will be right over for some cupcakes
    should take about 5-6 hours!

  177. Painhrtz says:

    Shump – I have a dream of Pelosi being consumed by her well dressed gay and zombified constituents on a daily basis. Sadly they would probably spit her out.

  178. Schumpeter says:

    plume (137)-

    Feudalism, all the way! We’ve already prepped most of the US to be serfs, so the changeover should be easy.

    Can’t wait to dig into some roasted mutton on a trencher, washed down with a tankard of extra-strength mead.

  179. zieba says:

    RE: 180

    Gary is going to *$^&@ lose it.

  180. Schumpeter says:

    And people think Olde English is brand of malt liquor…

  181. Schumpeter says:

    Barb (141)-

    One week.

  182. Anon E. Moose says:

    175.Shore Guy says:
    January 28, 2010 at 3:36 pm

    You have NO IDEA how vulnerable the civil aviation system is to all manner of attacks. It is an area in which I have intimate knowledge. It is deeply unsettling.

    SG, might we have brushed wingtips at KBLM or similar?

  183. Schumpeter says:

    Sean, you need to figure out a way to cut bait on those in-laws.

  184. “Just got this from a Realtor.”

    Save $965 now pay $50,000 later.

    “For a borrower purchasing a $200,000 home with a $7,000 down payment…”

    This is very disturbing as well. How bad can it go when you are leveraged 29X? Bear Stearns/Lehman Bros bad!

  185. John says:

    Can of gasoline and a pack of matches is about as much help as I would give

  186. Mikeinwaiting "bicep" says:

    Veto put me in the Deutsche Bank camp at least for my area north west Sussex,
    may see worse Ket /Clot up here, but in my mind to many suckers out there for that. You would believe the stuff I here coming out of peoples mouths. By the way tax rate for my town 4.1 % “F” en lovely.

  187. Mikeinwaiting "bicep" says:

    Stu 190 I know what the f..k are these people smoking.

    192 would= wouldn’t or maybe you would.

  188. Schumpeter says:

    Mike (180)-

    Ha. That agent’s former partner lost his license last year for not telling the RE Commission that he’s a convicted felon.

  189. Mikeinwaiting "bicep" says:

    Zieba 185 I was hoping he was around sure it would have been a real good one.

  190. Schumpeter says:

    Hurry! Act now!!! Only a few more weeks of being able to do an FHA loan where the minute the ink’s dry on the closing docs, you’re at least 2.5% (if not, more) underwater!!!

    Move along…no moral hazard here, folks.

  191. Mikeinwaiting "bicep" says:

    Clot 194 not my agent, but that doesn’t surprise me at all.

  192. Schumpeter says:

    pain (183)-

    If I have a dream like that anytime within the next 30 days, I’m coming after you. :)

  193. Schumpeter says:

    Gotta jet. Have some felonies of my own that need to be committed.

  194. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Principal reductions will put me over the edge. I have been pondering the removal of equity from my home which stands at 40%. If they proceed with prin reductions then I too will go into startegic default. Not by need but by choice. The mere suggestion of that moral hazard is lunacy. I agree that it would cause absolute chaos in the housing market.

  195. Anon E. Moose says:

    194.Schumpeter says:
    January 28, 2010 at 4:04 pm
    Mike (180)-

    Ha. That agent’s former partner lost his license last year for not telling the RE Commission that he’s a convicted felon.

    Yep. Nothing but the finest moral caliber.

  196. MetroStar Hooligan says:

    Real cuts in Harrison? There’s a sh*t storm brewing.

    A town statement said layoffs would affect “27 full-time employees and 19 part-time employees. Additionally, eight employees (including Tax Collector Margaret Powell) have filed for their pension (and) under Mayor McDonough’s hiring freeze, these employees will not be replaced.”

    “I can’t raise everybody’s property taxes,” the mayor said. “it would mean a $3,000 to $5,000 bill.”

    “Based upon the affected employees’ salary and benefits, the town of Harrison will save $2,705,000 annually,” the statement said.


  197. Schumpeter says:

    AUD/EUR cross, anyone? Or, a tasty little short on some bunds? John, help a nigg@ out here:

    “Yet another rumor denied vehemently by the Greek Finance Ministry, which automatically means it is 100% true, is that Greece rescue talks are reaching a fever pitch, and according to FT-Deutschland, Germany is seeing increasing pressure to bail out the struggling country. As Dow Jones reports “rescue talks are being held in the EU and with certain capitals about aid for Greece, according to the sources, the report adds. Several options are being discussed, one of which being bilateral loans from some euro zone countries, where Germany would have to shoulder a major part as the euro zone’s largest economy.”


  198. Barbara says:

    Al Gore,
    careful, article this morning (above) talks about home equity loans being fair game legally for collections.

  199. Schumpeter says:

    moose (201)-

    The caliber I’d pick for you is .357.

    “Yep. Nothing but the finest moral caliber.”

  200. relo says:

    Howard Marks:

    Our Dance with China
    Here are the facts:
     China has vast resources, human and otherwise.
     It produces goods cheaper than the developed countries.
     China’s likely undervalued currency aids its competitiveness as an exporter.
     The U.S. buys more from China than it sells to China.
     That means dollars keep piling up in China.
     The U.S. has to borrow back those dollars to fund its fiscal and trade deficits.
     We’d prefer low interest rates in order to minimize our interest payments, and a weak dollar
    so we can repay our debts (as if!) in devalued currency.
     China, with its reserves growing, has to invest large amounts of dollars.
     China wants high rates and a strong dollar in order to maximize the value of our future
    payments to them.
     China would probably like to diversify the investment of its reserves away from the dollar,
    but (a) it’s hard to figure out where to better invest them and (b) doing so would further
    weaken the dollar, of which China already owns so many.
    The great thing about not being an economist is that I don’t have a view on how all of this will
    play out. But I’m sure it implies considerable uncertainty.

  201. John says:

    principal reductions of mortgages that have been securitized and sold to widows and orphans as investments that have a prospectus that clearly states principal drawdowns are not allowed is dicey.

    A mcmansion in Vegas whose mortage was bundled into an MBS sold to a nun in Idaho as an investment so she can eat slightly better than dog food that is reduced is insanity.

    If bank owns loan outright and figures foreclosing and re-selling is cost them 100K want to reduce by 90K and give a slightly better rate is one thing. But stealing from widows and orphans is another. Also most banks just service loans so how can they modify loans that they don’t own? Lets say at FDIC failed bank auction I buy 100 million whole loans, Chase services them, what right does Chase have. Maybe I always wanted a mcmansion in vegas, I might say foreclose.

  202. Schumpeter says:

    Barb (204)-

    The only time I’ve ever heard a banker in NJ mention going for a deficiency judgment, his borrower (no, wasn’t me, but I was in the meeting) was right in front of him.

    The borrower burst out laughing.

  203. John says:

    Greece is getting bailed out.

  204. Painhrtz says:

    Shump what offended you gay, well dressed, Zombies or Pelosi ; ).

  205. Mikeinwaiting "bicep" says:

    Clot 196 I almost got into it with a Real-tor’s husband at a bar in town having lunch. Talk went to re & I said as soon as the paper dries these people are under water. He said I should not go around saying that, not that it was not true. This guy is no dummy & knows I’m right just don’t tell anyone. It was lively row to say the least. I email them charts from here revenge is sweet I have been going round & round with these folks since it all started.

  206. Veto That says:

    Owner bought this home in Jun 2006 for $475 and now is asking $350K.

    Bonus features: Well and Septic.


  207. Schumpeter says:

    mike (211)-

    People tell me all the time not to say things that we all know to be true. Even my wife tells me I should cool it. The problem is, I really, truly don’t give a fcuk.

    Strange times.

    BTW, I will not be quiet.

  208. Veto That says:

    House Price Recovery Just A Head Fake, Says Alpert, Especially In New York

    Posted Jan 28, 2010

    In the second half of 2009, house prices staged a surprising recovery, leading many to conclude that the housing bust was done.

    Keep dreaming, says Dan Alpert of Westwood Capital.

    The rise in the second half of 2009 was mainly the result of pent-up demand combined with a tax-break, subsidized mortgage rates, and other incentives. The housing market is still awash in excess inventory, and Alpert says this will eventually drive prices down to 8%-10% below the lows of early last year.

    The good news?

    House prices should bottom this year and then begin to recover. Also, for the hardest hit areas, such as those in California or the sand states, the bust is probably over. Prices have fallen so far in those areas that Alpert thinks they’re bottoming now.

    So where is the sky still falling?

    Places where price-to-rent ratios are still well above historical norms, such as New York City.

    A staggering amount of excess inventory means the housing crash in NYC is alive and well, Alpert says.

  209. sastry says:

    Fire… last thread

    “Sastry, question for you, as far as I know a bigger car is always has a priority in India. I’m still trying to figure a way how to drive safe here ”

    It’s a very hap-hazard traffic. I drove quite a bit in India this summer. My observation, when the speeds are very low (<5 mph, which happens at crowded intersections), collisions with people and other small vehicles have been very common. Small scratches and dents are a non-issue.

    Regarding who gets the priority, we never know. Motorbikes keep squeezing through any small opening. In case of an accident, unless you are well connected, the mob justice will put the bigger car at a disadvantage. Exactly the opposite with the cops — money wins much much more frequently in India than in US.

    On major highways, there is the odd worry that someone tries to cross the road in the middle of nowhere.

    The worst thing I observed is that some small vehicles (motorbikes and three wheelers) take the liberty of driving on the wrong side of the road (even a divided highway with 2 or 3 lanes on each side). This is to avoid the extra distance of making a U-turn at the next road divider. Imagine driving fast on a clear road with one-way traffic and you see a set of lights coming straight towards you. I noticed a car that did this too.

    This should turn you off driving in India!

    About Edison, there is simply too much traffic on the Plainfield Ave/Stelton Rd — single lane, train station in the middle, multiple traffic stops, each place bringing in more cars. I don’t think the driving habits are the main problem there.


  210. Alap says:


    Gov. Chris Christie said it is “outrageous” that a New Jersey regional sewer authority official receives a $313,000 annual salary, according to a report on NorthJersey.com.

    gotta love freakin NJ. complain about all the wall st. people you want. but these are the people costin us tax $$ in this state.

  211. All "H-Train" Hype says:

    70 idiots confirmed Bernake for a 2nd term.

    God help us all…..

  212. Schumpeter says:

    Treasury decides to undermine Home Affordable (HAMP) by delivering a time-release, backdoor kill shot:

    There are two key components:

    1) New Requirements that Documentation be Provided Before Trial Modification Begins.
    2) and guidance on Converting Borrowers in the Temporary Review Period to Permanent Modifications

    From Treasury: Administration Updates Documentation Collection Process and Releases Guidance to Expedite Permanent Modifications. And the Special Directive.

    1) On beginning trial modifications: The original plan allowed servicer discretion on when to place borrowers in HAMP trial modification programs. Some servicers required documentation and a first payment before putting the borrower in a trial program, others just accepted a verbal agreement over the phone. The new rules include:

    Effective for all trial period plans with effective dates on or after June 1, 2010, a servicer may evaluate a borrower for HAMP only after the servicer receives the following documents, subsequently referred to as the “Initial Package”. The Initial Package includes:

    -Request for Modification and Affidavit (RMA) Form,

    -IRS Form 4506-T or 4506T-EZ, and

    -Evidence of Income

    The trial period will start after the initial documents are received, a trial plan is sent to the borrower, and the borrower makes the initial payment.

    The Treasury was initially trumpeting the number of trial modifications, but that was a poor metric of success since some servicers were just putting anyone who answered the phone in a trial modification.

    2) The second key component of the directive is how to handle all the current trial modifications. For the borrowers who have not made all of their payments, the directive requires the HAMP trial program to be canceled. For borrowers who have made payments, but are missing documentation, Treasury provides some additional guidelines.

    This suggests a surge of trial cancellations in February.


  213. Essex says:

    Face it…..we ALL got duped. No one gets out alive.

  214. Essex says:

    P.S. I have a web crush on Barbara…she’s da Bomb.

  215. Sean says:

    re #207 – John dicey?

    How is this for dicey. There is a real incentive for people to walk away in droves, especially for certain people who need to relocate to find work or divorce etc.

    People will be walking away in droves, it will be capitalist market response to the underwater home that cannot be sold. Good money should not chase after a bad asset right? As with securitization, a foreclosure pushes the risk down the line a bit however on such a scale of massive walkaways every tranch will be impoverished.

    Principle cram downs will come out of necessity, another version of TBTF to save the bondholder and the homeowner with another TBTF government bailout. The Gov will want to give folks a reason/incentive to stick with their homes right?

  216. Coco says:

    I’m a longtime lurker here and love the site and the commentary. I also bought a home last year, despite believing, as most of you do, that there is highly likely downside. I was a renter for years and grew weary of landlords. I have only ever had one “good” one, and my last was egregiously bad. Had that situation been even passably tolerable, I might have rented for another year, but it was awful. PITA landlord, awful house. But I digress…

    For me, the decision to buy really came down to my belief that housing is an expense, not an investment. I couldn’t find a rental nearly as nice as the house I bought for the same price (including property tax), and I was just sick to death of living at the relative mercy of accidental landlords who are only renting because they “waited too long to sell”. Would I have preferred to comfortably wait for a bottom? Yes. But it because pretty clear to me that I couldn’t wait comfortably. Particularly with a family. So I made a decision that was not 100% financially sound, I made it with my eyes wide open, and I believe I am happier for it.

    Lots of people here also wonder aloud at the sanity of those who choose to live in NJ. I think the property taxes are absurd and the state’s fiscal mismanagement is criminal, but I love my community, I love my neighborhood, I like my commute.

    I suppose, in short, I’m saying that one can live here and buy a home here and not be an idiot. I made reasonably informed decisions with very real trade offs that are absolutely worth it to me. I have a cash cushion, didn’t but nearly what they all told me I could “afford”, and I and my family are happy here. Would my personal ledger have ultimately worked out better had I waited a couple more years? Almost certainly. But I could not live through another two years of moving my family around and dealing with amateur, clueless landlords. And I wanted to paint the walls. If I never see another eggshell white wall again it will be too soon.

    And I did want to make one mention with the utmost respect – Veto, I’ve seen you wish to inflict a bad day with retaliatory lowball offers on sellers with too-high asking prices. I promise you, you don’t have to do anything. Anyone trying to sell in this market has already suffered at least one very bad day. Those asking proces are not hubris – they are desperation. Just my two cents.

  217. sastry says:

    Stu, two threads ago, on how to make money off Gator’s advice.

    One suggestion would be to write a book? Self-publish and charge. Or, sell it as supplementary material to a presentation.

    200 people per town or small region for home tax appeal? May be a bit on the higher side?

    Actually, the best thing would be to go on fox news, peddle some cr@p on how the government is stealing money via unfairly high appraisals. We will create a controversy around your new nick. Then Gator can say some really ridiculous things that the teabaggers crave. Charge an appearance fee. Profit.


  218. Veto That says:

    “P.S. I have a web crush on Barbara…she’s da Bomb.”

    Yeah, Barb is pretty hot.

  219. John says:

    Sean cause in certain states like Florida lender has five years to request they go after other assets and they have 20 years to go after it. So walk away in Florida, win lottery 19 year later you got to pay it back. Heck you can’t even save up for house as bank can sieze it.

    I am not saying people will walk away let them do it. I am saying if I own the paper on your home in Southampton I want the right to modify interest rate, foreclosure or voluntarily modify. I don’t want some slick guy moving assets overseas and having govt force me to give him a principal reduction.

    Also why should I not have the right to buy your house? Next door I have a blown out house right on top of me bought at the peak by people up to their neck in debt, I say kick them out let me buy and I will take down fence. Either connect my house or knock it down. What right do they have to squat. Also principal reduction should be refundable if they come into money within a set period of time.

  220. Mr Hyde says:

    “P.S. I have a web crush on Barbara…she’s da Bomb.”

    Yeah, Barb is pretty hot.…NJTweenGossip& realestateREPORT?.?.?.?.

  221. leftwing says:

    I saw her first!!!

  222. Veto That says:

    “you wish to inflict a bad day with retaliatory lowball offers on sellers with too-high asking prices.”

    Coco, I dont want to inflict a bad day on anybody. I’m just frustrated about the affordability like eveyone else.
    I realize that most sellers are just innocent bag holders.
    i dont know for sure but you seemed to have bought responsibly.
    Not all homeowners will be crippled by the housing crash, just the greedy and irresponsible ones.

  223. Veto That says:

    Btw, here is barbara in case you guys havent met her before.


  224. relo says:

    225/220: Back off, I saw her first.

  225. Juice Box Sean says:

    John right or wrong principal reduction is coming, it is all about TBTF and getting peoples payesments down to 31% which is what the the HAMP program was intended to do but so far has failed.

    The lobbying groups for the securitzation folks have already given the Treasury the green light to propose the plan to Congress as long as it includes safe harbor provisions for them. I would also expect that Congress will also put in provisions for the recourse loans so if you ever ended up selling the property 20 years from now.

    TBTF isn’t done yet, the only other scenario would be some miraculous economic bubble that creates six or seven million well paying jobs over the next two years so people don’t walk away.

  226. Doyle says:

    Regarding Babs, I concur…

    B*tch Please.

  227. toyne says:

    #232 What Safe Harbor provisions?

  228. toyne says:

    Any predictions for tomorrow’s GDP#?

  229. relo says:

    236: 30% off peak.

  230. Veto That says:

    “Any predictions for tomorrow’s GDP#?”

    Up 7%

    (then quietly revised down to -7% a month later)

  231. Essex says:

    COCO…well put. In fact the best way to live here is to pray to god you don’t get reassessed at some lofty point….we are under the radar….so to speak and nestled at the $11k ish mark…when those around us are at $15k+. You never want to “finish” a basement….Keep the ceiling open if you must add wall panels….and a nice floor. Generally speaking, we are better off in some ways than the folks paying HUGE dollars for closets in NYC…but they must be there for some reason. Perhaps the culture! NJ is a nice place. I too love the people (seriously?!) have a couple of great friends…a nice area with an easy commute and work that I honestly love. The wife does darn well for herself too…..My kid likes school — our own little slice of heaven.

  232. toyne says:

    #229 I agree not all will be hurt, but alot will, more than you might think. Even the ones who bought 10 plus years ago, wwill be hurt, as so many of them heloc’d themselves into oblivion.

  233. leftwing says:

    ” Principal reduction, as I said previously it was defeated in the Senate in the Spring of last year and it is going to be tough to pass it unless it is used a way to win the election in November by the Democrats. ”

    Oh boy. I spent four presidential election cycles explaining that the reason the midterms of ’94 were lost was not because HillaryCare didn’t pass, but because they tried.

    The Left are finally getting it, but it took Scott Brown to get them there for this term’s crowd.

    Prediction here first. The party that passes principal reduction will find itself so marginalized that the 40 years in the desert will feel like a fingersnap.

    No way, no how does principal reduction ingratiate anyone with the majority of the electorate, let alone those sought after independents.

    Question is, if dealt that hand will the Right know how to play it?

    Recall the CNBC special on the housing crisis last year and some of the characters on there. Can you imagine the optics for J6Pack in flyover America who views contracts as ‘sacred’ and obligations as ‘moral’ of the unwed mother of two of a certain demographic (who by virtue of living in an urban area may be earning the same amount as he and living in a better home) walking through her house complaining that she can’t afford the $350k mortgage and then they pan to the refi’d pool in the backyard and Beemer in the driveway and note she only paid $325k for the entire house five years ago?

    Dems can’t be that stupid and self destructive, again. You don’t pass hyper-sensitive legislation that overwhelmingly benefits your base but alienates most undecideds.

    Party line vote on this and the country bleeds red in November.

  234. Anon E. Moose says:


    Careful there, Schump. Violent crimes really are a whole different ball game then simple white collar matters [199]. Besides, the shock value of empty death threats really has worn off.

    In any case, nothing in what I said was directed at you. In fact, I cited your information as authority. You are reliable and trustworthy, aren’t you?

  235. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    I finished my basement and the tax man left a note on my door a week later stating that he needed to reasses the home. My wife told him to come back when we are home which is after 9pm. Never heard back from him.

  236. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [184] clot

    well said, Sir Schumpeter, Lord of Branchburgshire.

  237. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “The federal government is sending each of us a $600 rebate. If we spend that money at Wal-Mart, the money goes to China. If we spend it on gasoline it goes to the Arabs. If we buy a computer/Software it will go to India. If we purchase fruit and vegetables it will go to Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala. If we purchase a good car it will go to Germany. If we purchase useless crap it will go to Taiwan and none of it will help the American economy. The only way to keep that money here at home is to spend it on prostitutes and beer, since these are the only products still produced in US. I’ve been doing my part .

    Dr. Marc Faber

  238. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “I am very, very bearish on the dollar, but I am long the dollar. I own more dollars than I did 2, 3 or 4 months ago. Mainly because there are so many bears, including me. The dollar is a terribly flawed currency and its going to have huge problems in the next several years. But at the moment there are so many bears that it is bound to have a rally.”

    Jim Rogers

  239. Veto That says:

    “I finished my basement and the tax man left a note on my door a week later stating that he needed to reasses the home. My wife told him to come back when we are home which is after 9pm. Never heard back from him.”

    Al – do you think maybe he saw the weapons cashe?

  240. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    Maybe he ran into the post man who saw the packages being delivered to my address and the Gadsen flag hanging from my house.

  241. grim says:

    That can’t be a real Faber quote, but very much in-the-style-of.

  242. John says:

    No principal reduction is coming to the masses. 50% of us don’t have a mortgage including me and most on this site. Why do retirees and honest hard working folks who own their own homes want their values destroyed by overleaveaged people who by virtue of having a mortgage do not own a home. The bank owns it till the last payment and you get title in hand

  243. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [247] Al,

    You are aware that in the past year, police have been instructed to treat anyone displaying the Gadsen flag as a potential right wing terrorist?

    Want to wind up on the KGB’s watch list? Fly any variation of the Gadsen flag. Even the Bennington Flag may get you noticed.

  244. Shore Guy says:

    “The bank owns it till the last payment and you get title in hand”

    Then one’s leasholder switches from the bank to the state.

  245. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    247. Ah, terrorism. Eventually the masses will realize that word as fantasy. The military industrial complex must play 2 sides off eachother to keep society in a constant state of fear and control. The war on terrorism is a sham perpetuated by the puppet masters in DC. The politicians arent aware or in lock step.

    Its a shame because real prosperity for everyone doesnt rest in the BS legislation being proposed by either the UN or the administration. Eliminate the secrecy and the whole world can have renewable energy. Not solar, wind, or nuclear either. No oil, no need for empire America.

  246. veto (225)-

    Didn’t she call you a bitch?

  247. moose (241)-

    Ok. But I still want to shoot you.

  248. Veto That says:

    “Didn’t she call you a bitch?”

    Not that i remember. But thats hot too.

  249. Here’s a flag I rely on to encourage others to keep their distance:


    Forget, hell.

  250. Veto That says:

    Clot, i thought i saw this flag flying in front of your real estate office…


  251. Barbara says:

    Here’s who’s influence I was under when I said the “bitch please” which I will never live down. A short lived SNL character who is no Megan Fox, but is near and dear to my heart. Enjoy.


  252. Barbara says:

    Here’s whose influence I was under when I said the “bitch please” which I will never live down. A short lived SNL character who is no Megan Fox, but is near and dear to my heart. Enjoy.


  253. Essex says:

    Holy Crap Angie Tempura…..HOT!!!

  254. Barbara says:

    hehe I think she’s y2ks Mary Hartman

  255. Bystander says:

    Al Gore,

    Ever play the PC game Deus Ex? It came out about 10 years ago. I think you would like it. Actually I think many on this board would like it.

    -World Chaos
    -Terrorist plots
    -Biological attacks
    -United Nations power expansion
    -Government cover-ups
    -Underworld global control
    -Ancient conspiracy theories
    -Varieties of plasma & EMP weapons

    You get to experience it all. The designers obviously had some serious interest in the above themes. At least you could have some fun while the game plays out in real life. You could probably find ISO somewhere on the web (daemon tools to mount it)


  256. Mr Hyde says:


    where did u get cs ny metro data going back to 75??????

  257. Essex says:

    263. Rapier Wit!!

  258. Mr Hyde says:


    great game

  259. Mr Hyde says:


    ask SAS, the CIA probably helped design Dues Ex

  260. Veto That says:

    Hyde, i extrapolated the cs index to match the performance of fhfa from 1975-1987. Its just so that i didnt have to keep using two indexes.

  261. Veto That says:

    Ok, a strange guy i never met before just knocked on my door.

    He wants to sell us new windows that will save us 20% on our heating bills.

    Here is his sales pitch…
    “the fed govt will pay 30% of the bill.”

  262. Ben says:

    Roubini talks out of both sides of his mouth. He predicts heads and tails and only talks about the winning outcome.

  263. Veto That says:

    Wow, for all the scrap i talked about jersey shore, i sure did watch every single episode of that train wreck.

  264. Veto That says:

    Ashton Kucther explained it best when he said, “the Jersey Shore is like the show COPS before the Cops get there.”

  265. Barbara says:

    Jersey Shore pulls no punches. Its about people who do not enjoy thinking or doing and never will and are straight up proud of it.

  266. Veto That says:

    When your life revolves around ‘GTL’ (gym, tanning, & laundry) while pumping one fist in the club and gulping alchohol from the other, your brain tends to atrophy.

  267. Mr Hyde says:


    don’t forget that they vastly outnumber njrereport bloggers

  268. Stu says:

    Chuck Norris clogs the toilet even when he pisses.

  269. Pat says:

    Chuck Norris can piss into gale force winds.

  270. Barbara says:

    Chuck Norris is short

  271. Barbara says:

    Veto That says:
    January 28, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    Ok, a strange guy i never met before just knocked on my door.

    He wants to sell us new windows that will save us 20% on our heating bills.

    Here is his sales pitch…
    “the fed govt will pay 30% of the bill.”

    sounds like Travelers

  272. Pat says:

    I dunno about the heating bills, but if a guy ever comes to your door selling magazines, buy the thickest one for the longest amount of time – like ten years. They make great kindling.

    Then give the guy a check.

    The next day, call your bank, stop pay the check, and you will get the magazine for twice the amount of time you paid for.

    There, I just saved you 20 percent on your heating bills and you don’t have to file the long form.

  273. Pat says:

    OMG, John’s like a plague.

  274. stander (264)-

    This is, like, every major topic we beat to death here.

    I want this game!

    -World Chaos
    -Terrorist plots
    -Biological attacks
    -United Nations power expansion
    -Government cover-ups
    -Underworld global control
    -Ancient conspiracy theories
    -Varieties of plasma & EMP weapons

  275. pat (283)-

    I suspect John has the plague.

  276. Pat says:

    I thought this blog WAS Deus Ex!

    Clot is in the lead, but graphing and late-night paranoia get extra points, so veto, kettle and SAS are tied for second.

  277. cobbler says:

    Someone asked about a new construction small rancher.

    All yours for 499K:

  278. sas says:


    brought to you by the milk of mother’s breast or full service on the CL.


  279. scribe, The Princess of Paramus says:

    Barbara, #281

    I think you need to explain that “Travelers” doesn’t mean the insurance company, it means a notorious group of scammers who “travel” around with phony home repair scams.

  280. Barbara says:

    hehe I didn’t think of the Insurance co. point taken.

  281. sas says:

    I’ve been putting the frequently flyer miles on back and forth to out in the midwest. I have 2 projects going on. Working a timber trade into Asia and Middle east from midwestern ponderosa pine. don’t worry hippies. we’re working blue pine. Pine thats been killed by pine beetles. We’re not only doing trade, but also green energy biomass trade, cause we have thousands of acres that we need clear tp prevent fire damage.

    so, i predict in the future come spring, going to need to do some hiring. I got a laundry list of things I need. keeps a look out for me posts cause I’m gonna need resumes.
    ex. I need a marketing, I need interpreters, I need accountant, I need someone to do lumber , I need a soil scientist.

    Right now, I got a small knit crew.

    Leave the negotiations and trade talk and policy to me, thats my speciality.

    My other gig. I had a ol oilman friend from Dallas pass back sometime ago, his wife lives now in midwest too. she wants to make recommendations for philanthropy donations before she joins her husband in the sky, so I’ve been scoping university hospitals and humane society…you know…adoption dogs, pups, and kitties.


  282. sas says:

    I need payroll and taxes done.


  283. Qwerty says:

    When building a boogieman backfires:


    The Jan. 25 article “Is the President Panicking” originally stated that Fox News led the charge against Bill Clinton in the ’94 midterm elections. Fox News did not come into being until 1996. The story has been corrected.

  284. Barbara says:


    it all sounds like important and worthwhile work. I like the dead,infested trees-as-lumber angle, appeals to my sense of thrift.

  285. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    The PWTB have planned first for a financial collapse that will make the great depression look like a picnic. This will occur through the maneuvering of the great banks and financial institutions of the world, through stock manipulation, and interest rate changes. Most people will be indebted to the federal government through bank and credit card debt, etc. The governments will recall all debts immediately, but most people will be unable to pay and will be bankrupted. This will cause generalized financial panic, which will occur simultaneously worldwide, as the PWTB firmly believe in controlling people through finances.

    Doesn’t sound pleasant, does it? I don’t know the exact time frame for all of this, and wouldn’t want to even guess. The good news is that if a person is debt-free, owes nothing to the government or credit debt, and can live self sufficiently, they may do better than others. I would invest in gold, not stocks, if I had the income. Gold will once again be the world standard, and dollars will be pretty useless (remember after the Civil War? Our money will be worth about what confederate money was after the collapse).

    Next there will be a military takeover, region by region, as the government declares a state of emergency and martial law. People will have panicked, there will be an anarchical state in most localities, and the government will justify its move as being necessary to control panicked citizens. The cult trained military leaders and people under their direction will use arms as well as crowd control techniques
    See here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=etv8YEqaWgA

    to implement this new state of affairs. …Military bases will be set up, in each locality (actually, they are already here, but are covert). In the next few years, they will go above ground and be revealed. Each locality will have regional bases and leaders to which they are accountable. The hierarchy will closely reflect the current covert hierarchy.

    All of this was documented prior to the present financial collapse.

  286. scribe, The Princess of Paramus says:

    I want to market sas! :)

  287. Great information, Thank you so much keep up the great work.

  288. Ilda Dittmar says:

    I wonder what is so remarkable about Kindle that Amazon is promoting it so much. Yes, ability to view blogs on it is remarkable, but to what extent? To the extent of annoying bloggers with no revenue? The revenue model Kindle promotes lacks luster and does not promise great revenue. Better if Amazon revises its plans to benefit bloggers greatly.

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