Housing Bailout Plan #46 47 (Hard to keep up with these)

From Bloomberg:

U.S. Said to Widen Homeowner Aid, Subsidize Mortgage Reductions

The Obama administration plans to announce programs to help homeowners avoid foreclosure, including subsidies for borrowers who owe more than their home is worth.

The plan, to be unveiled today, would expand Treasury Department and Federal Housing Administration programs and use funds from the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, according to two administration officials. The administration faced a week of criticism from lawmakers and watchdog groups who say the government hasn’t helped enough homeowners stave off foreclosure.

“It’s almost like a triage policy,” said Eric Barden, chief investment officer of Barden Capital Management in Austin, Texas. “It limits the losses of the most overvalued properties and it also limits the losses to the borrowers that are in the most distress.”

The new plan would increase payments to lenders that modify second mortgages, an official said. Banks’ unwillingness to write down second liens has helped block efforts to prevent foreclosures, said Josh Rosner, managing director at Graham, Fisher & Co. The Washington Post reported earlier on the administration’s plan.

The administration will propose allowing more mortgages to be refinanced into FHA guarantee programs if the borrower is current on the loan, one of the officials said. The lender would have to cut the amount owed by at least 10 percent to less than the value of the home. The first and second mortgages combined would have to be no more than 115 percent of the home’s value.

“Banks continue to carry second liens on their books at vastly inflated value,” Rosner said. “If the government reduced their ability to overinflate these assets, the banks would be more willing to engage in principal reductions.”

The Treasury would help unemployed homeowners reduce mortgage payments for at least three months while they look for work, the officials said. If homeowners don’t find a job in that time, or if they find a new job at a lower salary, they will be evaluated for further assistance.

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610 Responses to Housing Bailout Plan #46 47 (Hard to keep up with these)

  1. Mr Hyde says:

    The Obama administration plans to announce programs to help homeowners avoid foreclosure, including subsidies for borrowers who owe more than their home is worth.

    …….. were are off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of Oz

  2. grim says:

    When all hope is lost, give away money.

  3. Nomad says:

    So if I buy a house for $600k, put $100k down and it’s a BOA Mtg. Then I stop paying, renegotiate the principal to $400k… Then sell on my own. Mtg arbitrage?

  4. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    N.J. School Staff Cuts Planned in 90% of Districts

    More than nine in 10 New Jersey public school systems that responded to a poll by a state education group said they plan to trim staff for their 2010-11 year to cope with Governor Chris Christie’s funding cuts.

    Ninety-three percent, or 138, of 149 districts that submitted answers to a survey by the New Jersey School Boards Association said their budget proposals call for firing workers or cutting staff through attrition. The number of school systems planning reductions should grow as more respond to the request for information, said Marie Bilik, the group’s executive director.

    New Jersey, the second-wealthiest U.S. state, has 588 school districts. Six in 10 respondents plan to cut programs to cope with Christie’s plan to slash aid to the districts by $820 million, or 10 percent, the school boards association said.

    “We’ve never seen this magnitude or type of decisions being weighed right now,” Bilik said. “We’re talking reduced staff, reduced programs and reduced arts and sports all in one year.”

  5. grim says:

    “We’ve never seen this magnitude or type of decisions being weighed right now,” Bilik said. “We’re talking reduced staff, reduced programs and reduced arts and sports all in one year.”

    Notice something missing from the statement?

    Why not reduce or freeze salaries? Commonplace strategy in the private sector.

  6. crossroads says:

    when will reality hit sellers? most are listing close to bubble prices. now we have banks and gvt. writing down mortgages. obviously reductions won’t be reflected in comps in anyway. when will word get through to fantasy land the sellers live in?

  7. crossroads says:

    “Why not reduce or freeze salaries? Commonplace strategy in the private sector.”

    pse&g unions accepted a pay freeze with 18 months to go on a contract.

  8. Nomad says:

    I’d like to know how much longer interest rates can remain low. Seems like market forces will drive them up overpowering artificial attemtps to keep them as is.

    From WSJ: Debt Fears Send Rates Up

    A sudden drop-off in investor demand for U.S. Treasury notes is raising questions about whether interest rates will finally begin a march higher—a climb that would jack up the government’s borrowing costs and spell trouble for the fragile housing market.


  9. Nomad says:

    Some have commented that interest rates will remain low for the next year or so I think I have to call BS. Unexpected jumps coming.

  10. crossroads says:

    13 nomad

    I agree thats part of the reason why we’re seeing principal reduction programs coming out. the other part is people can’t afford the house they’re in at %0.

  11. Final Doom says:

    All the best to your dad, grim.

  12. House Whine says:

    9-grim- My thought is that if jobs were saved by the acceptance of wage freezes it would cost NJ less than letting teachers/staff go. We wouldn’t have to pay any unemployment insurance because now with all these upcoming layoffs we are going to further burden the taxpayers, except it will be through the UI fund.

  13. freedy says:

    seems to me Barry O is getting desperate housing is over.

  14. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    I don’t know what I’m more depressed about this morning, my Xavier Muskies heartbreaking double OT loss, or not getting to see half the f’g game because of that Cornell game.

    It’s bad enough Cornell got killed but to have to watch those inbred Kentucky fans celebrating in the stands reminds me of one of the reasons I moved from Cincincinnati in the first place.

  15. Final Doom says:

    Just another reason not to pay your mortgage. Only the stupid and the larcenous win.

  16. Final Doom says:

    Barry, pay my mortgage and I’ll promise to vote for you.

  17. Final Doom says:

    JPM a silver manipulator? I’m shocked, just shocked…

    “Earlier today the CFTC held a sham hearing in which, among other thing, the organization discussed position limits in PM speculation, because, you know, it’s the mom and pop speculators that destroy the precious metal market (not JP Morgan or the New York Fed mind you). The hearing could not have come at a more opportune time. GATA has just broken a major story, in which a London metals trader-slash-whistleblower exposes JP Morgan’s silver price suppression/manipulation scheme. At this point none of this should be at all shocking, and the only thing that matters is when CFTC’s ex-Goldmanite Gary Gensler will be fired for allowing hundreds of billions of dollars to be sucked out of the PM market on behalf of such major market manipulating entities as JP Morgan and the New York Federal Reserve, for whom it transacts. Don’t worry – the answer to that rhetorical question is “never”, as it is the administration’s goal to make all the millionaires among the bulge bracket firms billionaires, via legalized theft from honest investors. Furthermore, if indeed the CFTC is complicit in these manipulative events, as GATA suggest, we hope our objective mainstream media readers enjoin GATA in seeking justice for this criminal breach of proper regulatory enforcement.”


  18. Fiddy Cents on the Dollar says:

    When school systems talk about cutting staff, they are of course referring to custodians, lunch aides, and under-assistant office staff.

    So your schools will soon have trashy hallways, sloppy lunch-lines and poorly-collated copies of Graydon’s transcripts being sent to Harvard.

    I’m betting that not one tenured teacher feels any heat over these cuts. And that the total salaries of the underlings that do feel the ax…..add up to one month’s pay for the Superintendent.

  19. safeashouses says:

    The interior of this house looks great. Seems pricey for its size though.


  20. Final Doom says:

    fiddy (23)-

    Just another sheeple show. The wheels are most assuredly coming off. The criminals prosper further and the honest and hardworking take the shank.

  21. Final Doom says:

    safe (24)-

    Shit de merde.

  22. Final Doom says:

    500K to own a functionally obsolete house (1 BA) in a town full of arseholes?

    Don’t even tell me what the taxes are.


  23. safeashouses says:

    #27 Doom,

    This is NJ. You have to pay up for quality.

  24. about says:

    ok- i am no expert by any means.
    My husband and I have been waiting to get into the housing market for about 5 years now. When we first started looking, we realized that the type of home we wanted was really out of our reach, and we couldn’t afford it. So we didn’t buy above our means. We waited. We have 2 children, and our apartment isn’t ideal, but works for us. (we are looking in the high 400K, low 500K in union county)
    So if we would have bought above our means, the government would be arranging some type of principle forgiveness for us?
    Maybe we are a small percentage of folks that stood on the sidelines. But I find all the housing rescue to be irritating. Why can’t we let the market fall, readjust to more affordable prices and let all us sideliners buy in? Ofcourse it is unfortunate that people would foreclose, lose a home, mar their credit- but isn’t that the result of buying above your means for many people? Also, I think Obama is sending the wrong message helping those people that can afford to pay their mortgages, but don’t want to because they owe more on their mortgage than their house is worth! I say, too bad.
    I just don’t understand putting all this money into home relief programs when ultimately the real estate market should fall??
    thank you for hearing my humble opinion- guess i woke up on the wrong side of the Obama plan this morning!

  25. Fiddy Cents on the Dollar says:

    Here’s an example of a school district weilding the Meat Axe to make “deep cuts” in their budgets :

    A sample of the Draconian measures being taken….”The elimination of kindergarten aides and other positions and less spending for supplies are among the Board of Education’s responses”

    Another excerpt….”Costs for benefits, up about $300,000, account for the largest increase in the proposed budget.

    Reduction of positions will save the district 3.9 percent, or $215,807, in salaries.”

    Remember, It’s for the children

  26. Nomad says:

    #29 – about

    keep waiting – we are and your patience may be rewarded in a significant way.

    not sure when but inflation will come roaring back and it is going to be sooner rather than later. artificial suppression of low rates will be overcome and it’s not 3 years down the road.

    housing market is being propped up because there are so many weak links in the economy now that I think gov’t is worried about domino effect (affect? must pay attention in school next time around).

    w/inflation and minimal job creation, housing prices IMO will have to drop and if you are looking in NJ, the skyrocketing taxes will add to pricing pressure.

  27. Barbara says:

    the thing about this principal write down is that they are going to purposely make it very hard to figure out if you qualify, in fact they released to the media that they won’t answer any questions about it, its a don’t call us, we’ll call you. I doubt this will be substantial or a major trend, sounds like PR imo.

  28. Libtard says:

    Nomad (31):


    4 more market days until the MBS purchasing goes kaput. We’ve all seen the impact of even a quarter point change in mortgage rates on loan origination. Less sales plus higher taxes equal lower home prices. The fact that this Spring peak for RE ain’t peaking should just add fuel to the fire.

    My fam is in a similar situation. Was hoping the five year plan would synch up with late 2009. One more year is well worth the wait when you see commuting costs and taxes increasing rapidly, as salaries continue to be frozen. The way I see it, the only way to really get a raise is to reduce what you are paying in personal real estate. Even if prices only drop 5% a year. On a 500K house that’s a $25K per year raise every year you are willing to wait. I stand by my 40% peak to trough prediction. Me thinks that this Summer and Fall will equate to another 10% drop in prices. Add another 5% drop next year and that 500K house will now be closer to 425K. That should work out to a mortgage payment that is $600 per month lower. That is a lot of scratch when your salary is as frozen as Jamil’s sex life.

  29. Final Doom says:

    Barb (32)-

    Rest assured the only people who will benefit will be the banksters. Any loan they do a principal reduction workout on can be reported as performing.

    Couple being able to report garbage loans as performing with a suspension of MTM allows these insolvent corpses to continue to tell the world they’re viable businesses.

  30. Cindy says:


    Opinion Bloomberg

    Lower Home Prices Can Fix What the Government Can’t: Caroline Baum

    “Perhaps another solution is in order. A novel idea not yet tried would be what other industries do to rid themselves of unsold merchandise. They hold a sale. Let prices fall until the goods find a buyer.”

  31. Final Doom says:

    lib (33)-

    Another big drop is imminent. IMO, the real carnage is about to begin.

    When it really gets going in earnest, you’ll be scared to buy a house at any price. When everything is selling for ’98-’99 prices and UE hits about 35%, there will be many more pressing issues at hand.

  32. Mr hyde says:


    do your own mortgage arb. Buy in such a manner so as to ensure that the house is as far underwater as quickly as possible. Banks appear to be actually forclosing primarily on homes who’s mortgages ate close to market value. The seem to ignoring those substantially underwater. Once well underwater stop paying the mortgage

    as a bonus take the loan out in euro’s and leverage the eurusd trade.

    Note: I am a janitor and my comments should not be taken seriously, unless they involve mopping it buffing floors

  33. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    “Any loan they do a principal reduction workout on can be reported as performing.”

    And with more “performing” loans they can lower their loan loss reserves, which means they have more money to gamble in the stock market because God knows they aint lending that money because they know what the real economic story is out there:)

  34. Barbara says:

    I can’t imagine a lot of conversations at the BBQs this summer about this guy at work or uncle so and so who got 150k knocked off his principal, etc. I see this as bordering on urban legend when all is said and done.

  35. Final Doom says:

    Cindy (35)-

    No. Under that scenario, the MBS fail, then the banksters fail.

    Will never be allowed to occur on its own. Of course, a good civil war, complete economic collapse and destruction of all social order should do the job nicely.

  36. Cindy says:

    Yesterday #143 @ 2:28 a Born to Run Bob posted. Was that BC Bob? Haven’t heard from him in ages.

    He mentioned Bruce and the Asbury Park GTG. Only a few were there – right Grim?
    Was that BC? I miss him.

  37. freedy says:

    whatever they do, it will not be in the best interest of the homeowner. try dealing with a bank and you will see, that’s if you can
    get the same person twice on the phone.

  38. Barbara says:

    37. Was just thinking that, the more under the better. Final Doom said it above, stupids and sharks win.

  39. Painhrtz says:

    The prudent are punished yet again. How am I not surprised.

    I would like my ocealls in dark green and a nice factory job making tractors for the next ten year plan.

    We are a nation of cowards and pussies. Clot your right the shooting is going to start. Got Brass?

  40. Final Doom says:

    Barb (39)-

    You want to test all this stuff? Stop paying your mortgage, and start getting in the face of your lender. I’ve seen people do this, and the results are jaw-dropping. The more underwater you are, the more leverage you have (hyde is right). In fact, part of getting what you want is convincing the lender that your house is a disease-infested, dilapidated POS that isn’t worth the tank of bulldozer gas it would take to flatten it.

    The real Hope for Homeowners program is whatever deal you can eke out with your bank…and they will do virtually anything once they decide they don’t want to foreclose.

  41. Cindy says:

    40 – Doom – No only do the MBS fail, how do the cities, counties and state survive on the reduced tax receipts of the lower property values.

    It is as if it all CAN’T function like a normal capitalistic market.

  42. Final Doom says:

    Cindy (41)-

    I have it from reliable sources that BC is now employed as currency “advisor” to Mrs. Watanabe.

  43. Final Doom says:

    BC’s new company’s dba is “Get Shorty FX”.

    I hear he’s also going to open a pawn shop division.

  44. Mr hyde says:

    Cindy 41

    don’t worry about BC. He’s probably on a beach wsipping a rum swizzle right about now

  45. Final Doom says:

    Cindy (46)-

    Hard to have capitalism when all the capital is in the hands of six banks and about 15 individuals.

  46. Final Doom says:

    hyde (49)-

    Lots of time for fruity rum swizzles when your entire FX strategy involves buying as much YCS as you can, then sitting back and watching it ramp.


  47. Nomad says:


    36 – valid point. one of my concerns is if I get a good deal on a house and have to move in the next 5 years, I may have to take a big haircut and we ain’t talking 15%.

    40 – to some extent, the response to the healhtcare bill is early stage civil unrest – spitting on congressional representatives, breaking of windows, hate speech. this kind of behavior can escalate if tolerated.

  48. Mr hyde says:


    the FX race to the bottom would seem to be an FX traders wet dream if properly managed.

    Got rum?

  49. Final Doom says:

    freedy (42)-

    How’s your cc walkaway going?

  50. Libtard says:

    Let’s not fool ourselves. Our banks are still insolvent. Every major financial decision our gubmint makes is to extend the facade for as long as possible in hopes that a miracle economic rebound will occur. When this is all said and done, the debate over the Band-Aid theory will remain as hotly contested as whether it was World War II that got us out of the 30’s funk or the New Deal.

  51. freedy says:

    settlement time with most, its just a waiting game as they get the drift ,, i’m not paying

  52. Final Doom says:

    hyde (53)-

    My FX knowledge is at about a third grade level, but even I can follow the herd that gangs up on the sick wildebeest du jour.

    The trick is developing a sense of when the correlation is so great that there’s literally nobody on the other side of the trade. Seems like that’s when the rug gets pulled out and everybody migrates to feed on another victim currency.

    Today’s sick wildebeest is the JPY. I get a funny feeling this one could be ridden to 150. That country is dead man walking.

  53. Nomad says:

    According to this, 43% of us have < $10k in retirement savings.


  54. Final Doom says:

    nomad (52)-

    I’m glad to see the threats and violence against kongress. Shows we’re still alive. These guys SHOULD be thinking twice about the consequences of decisions they make that can ruin people’s lives.

    Nothing’s gonna get better until we thin out this kleptocratic class, whether by peaceful attrition or by more direct means.

  55. Cindy says:

    Clot/ Kettle – Not worried about BC. I know he will always do well – just miss him.

  56. Mr hyde says:


    150 would be an F’ing gift from god.

    With JPY @ 92 right now, 150 would be almost 6000 pips!

    A single contract @ 100:1 would net you $60k

    with a $50k account you could easily make $600k -$1000k on that trade

  57. John says:

    “If I could come back as any corporate entity in my next life it would be as a money-center bank,” said Kiesel, who oversees $300 billion of credit investments from Newport Beach, California. “You can borrow money at virtually zero, you make prudent loans and you basically earn that spread.”

    This man speaks my language

  58. Jamal Van Jones says:

    This loan is your loan
    This loan is my loan
    From Califronia to the New York Islands…

  59. Mr hyde says:

    Everything I know about FX I learned from a highschool economics textbook.

    Damn kids never put their books away

  60. Mr hyde says:


    nice, I like it

  61. Barbara says:

    I called it a year ago, the threats against reps is motivated by racial anxiety. The anger is about the welfare class (perceived as blacks and illegals) getting sumthin for nuthin. All these convoluted arguments about dead grannies and socialism are multi paragraphed euphemisms and nothing more. Socialed medicine? I call that BCBS of NJ. No threats when bankers got bailed, the silence was deafening. We are a nation of hateful ignorant rednecks. I’m not at all impressed.

  62. Mr Hyde says:


    I dont entirely disagree, but there has been an underlying current of anger towards minority oriented programs such as affirmative action that has helped to set the stage. in some ways the government has constructed this problem on their own.

  63. Mr Hyde says:


    some pigs are just more equal then others.

  64. Cindy says:


    Here are the particulars on the CA home owner’s tax credit – effective 5/1. The GOV signed it right here in my backyard yesterday.

  65. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    about, 29

    welcome to my little slice of anger….

    I gift you THIS— a little wee bit of pond scum.

    Now you know where our country is headed.


  66. Nomad says:

    Doom 60 – perhaps you can share with us a case where violence eradicated a nations troubles. I’m not much for history or violence.

    I assume by your post your advocating physical and verbal assault on congressional representatives and their professional and personal property as a response to legislation you don’t agree with.

    Please confirm and do you plan to personally participate in these activities or are you just talking a bit of smack on an anonymous board.

  67. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [72] SL

    I loved that clip. I know that some of the right wing advocacy groups would have LOVED to put that in an ad, but that would have been a PR gift to the left.

    But once the mood in the country sours some more, who knows. Time to get some good welfare king and queen stories in the news; salacious enough so that MSM has to run them.

  68. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    Doom 36

    New reality check:

    Machete-like cuts at our little hospital. Many mid admins sent packing. The rest doing multiple jobs and covering multiple areas.

    I’ll know they are really beginning to understand the gravity of the situation when they finally send Press Ganey (patient satisfaction) surveys packing.


  69. A.West says:

    You should find an open house in Scotch Plains this Sunday that meets your needs. Hopefully you don’t make too much money so you can at least get a govt bonus if you buy quick. Mine has multiple offers in first week, so I hope to take it off the market soon. Neighbors think I priced too low but only losers leave a for sale sign in front of a house for a year.

  70. Mr Hyde says:


    How was this nation founded? Violence was a last resort after England failed to respond to diplomacy. When the founders engaged in violence it scaled up, they didnt declare war out of the blue.

  71. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    Nom, 74

    “Atlas Shrugged” should be mandatory reading for everyone.

    I am starting to see Doom’s reality…


  72. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [67] Barbara,

    Actually, I recall quite a lot of anger over the bailouts. Further, I haven’t seen the level of racial animosity you suggest, and frankly, I am surprised by that.

    What I do see is that this measure, coming on top of the bailout and Porkulus, is, for some, the proverbial last straw, and given that it represents a new intrusion by the federal government into the lives of citizens, it is meeting with resistance on that score.

    Even those who seemingly are voting against self-interest understand that there are externalities that are clear, predictable, and seemingly invisible to our leaders. The people recognize that this deal is not as good as is being suggested. This pisses the people off.

    Animosity at those who have always been picking their pockets forms a base, I agree, but when our government continues to openly favor that element, well, anger is predictable, is it not?

    In sum, I think the people “get it”, and that is why they are angry.

  73. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    Barb 67

    I wish you could come see my view of the world (in a relatively good neighborhood) through the eyes of ER docs.


  74. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    Nom, (dammit!) 79, 80,

    Get out of my head! :)


  75. Mr Hyde says:


    When does the GOV announce Directive

    ….from Atlas Shrugged:

    Directive 10-289

    “In the name of the general welfare,” read Wesley Mouch, “to protect the people’s security, to achieve full equality and total stability, it is decreed for the duration of the national emergency that–

    “Point One. All workers, wage earners and employees of any kind whatsoever shall henceforth be attached to their jobs and shall not leave nor be dismissed nor change employment, under penalty of a term in jail. The penalty shall be determined by the Unification Board, such Board to be appointed by the Bureau of Economic Planning and National Resources. All persons reaching the age of twenty-one shall report to the Unification Board, which shall assign them to where, in its opinion, their services will best serve the interests of the nation.

    “Point Two. All industrial, commercial, manufacturing and business establishments of any nature whatsoever shall henceforth remain in operation, and the owners of such establishments shall not quit nor leave nor retire, nor close, sell or transfer their business, under pentalty of the nationalization of their establishment and of any and all of their property.

    “Point Three. All patents and copyrights, pertaining to any devices, inventions, formulas, processes and works of any nature whatsoever, shall be turned over to the nation as a patriotic emergency gift by means of Gift Certificates to be signed voluntarily by the owners of all such patents and copyrights. The Unification Board shall then license the use of such patents and copyrights to all applicants, equally and without discrimination, for the purpose of eliminating monopolistic practices, discarding obsolete products and making the best available to the whole nation. No trademarks, brand names or copyrighted titles shall be used. Every formerly patented product shall be known by a new name and sold by all manufacturers under the same name, such name to be selected by the Unification Board. All private trademarks and brand names are hereby abolished.

    “Point Four. No new devices, inventions, products, or goods of any nature whatsoever, not now on the market, shall be produced, invented, manufacturerd or sold afer the date of this directive. The Office of Patents and Copyrights is hereby suspended.

    “Point Five. Every establishment, concern, corporation or person engaged in production of any nature whatsoever shall henceforth produce the same amount of goods per year as it, they or he produced during the Basic Year, no more and no less. The year to be known as the Basic or Yardstick Year is to be the year ending on the date of this directive. Over or under production shall be fined, such fines to be determined by the Unification Barod.

    “Point Six. Every person of any age, sex, class or income, shall henceforth spend the same amount of money on the purchase of goods per year as he or she spent during the Basic Year, no more and no less. Over or under purchasing shall be fined, such fines to be determined by the Unification Board.

    “Point Seven. All wages, prices, salaries, dividends, profits, interest rates and forms of income of any nature whatsoever, shall be frozen at their present figures, as of the date of this directive.

    “Point Eight. All cases arising from and rules not specifically provided for in this directive, shall be settled and determined by the Unification Board, whose decisions will be final.”

    At this point in the book much of the economy has collapsed due to government regulation and the teachings of the modern day. These are a set of directives ordered in the hope of stabilizing the economy.

  76. Comrade Nom Deplume says:


    Remember also, the aggrieved have two options: Leave if you can afford to, and fight if you can’t.

    The rich aren’t protesting. They are quietly packing up.

    The angry are those who understand that we, as a nation, have screwed the pooch. They are vilified as “the rich” but really aren’t. If they were, they would leave (and trust me, the truly rich are leaving). And they feel that they do not have the elasticity in their affairs to avoid what is coming. And it makes them angry.

    For my part, I may not like it, but I cannot ignore it. So I plan.

  77. John says:

    In sum, I think the people “get it”, and that is why they are angry.

    People don’t get it that is the problem. There was no bank bail out. The US Govt lent them money at above market rates and the banks paid them back with interest. The US made a lots and lots of money off the “bank bailout”.

    Loaning to CIT, GM, GMAC, Fannie, Freddie, Chrysler and AIG were stupid high risk loans where we are going to lose money. They ain’t banks. The average person is stupid. The bank bailout made money. But no one brings up the Car or Mortgage bail outs that is where the real cash was lost.

  78. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    84, John,

    Amen, my onion-poking brethren…

    My tears arise from your truth-telling not your dick smelling.



  79. Here 4 Now says:

    [re 29] “My husband and I have been waiting to get into the housing market for about 5 years now. When we first started looking, we realized that the type of home we wanted was really out of our reach, and we couldn’t afford it. So we didn’t buy above our means. We waited. We have 2 children, and our apartment isn’t ideal, but works for us. (we are looking in the high 400K, low 500K in union county)
    So if we would have bought above our means, the government would be arranging some type of principle forgiveness for us?
    Maybe we are a small percentage of folks that stood on the sidelines. But I find all the housing rescue to be irritating. Why can’t we let the market fall, readjust to more affordable prices and let all us sideliners buy in? Ofcourse it is unfortunate that people would foreclose, lose a home, mar their credit- but isn’t that the result of buying above your means for many people?”

    Get with the program. Just think how terrible it would be for all those families who bought more overpriced house than they could afford if they were foreclosed upon. They would lose the American Dream ™ and be forced to live in a less than ideal apartment! With little Graydon and Landon too! Oh, the humanity.

    Just keep your mouth shut and keep paying taxes so that the irresponsible and entitled members of society can continue living their American Dream.

  80. chicagofinance says:

    fcuk you you bastiges…..Ambac can consider the end of my middle finger a default….

    Ambac said that while it doesn’t consider the regulator’s move to constitute a default, it may consider a “prepackaged bankruptcy.”

    The International Swaps and Derivatives Association is studying the move and plans to rule on whether holders of contracts protecting against a default by Ambac’s insurance unit should be paid. The committee of banks and investors governs credit-default swaps in North America.


  81. chicagofinance says:

    ISDA needs to take the bichez out to the woodshed….

  82. chicagofinance says:

    clot: Cornell got smoked like a $2 cigar….sorry…

  83. prtraders2000 says:

    My sister told me her boss just named his baby Graydon. I busted out laughing, but she didn’t quite get the humor.

  84. jpl says:

    Long-time listener, first-time caller…

    Whenever we get close to considering buying a home, I venture over here for my doom-and-gloom report and talk myself out of it.

    We were planning on going to see this house in GR this weekend, but it’s already under contract in < 2 weeks.

    MLS ID # 2751479

    Taxes are ~23k, and obviously going to take a nice jump up after the recent news.

    I would guess under contract in < 2 weeks would mean an offer close to full ask, but I cant be certain.

    A future bag-holder, or is that where the market is?

  85. Mr Hyde says:


    The odds are for a future bag holder. The taxes alone are suicidal given that the state is pushing funding responsibilities onto the towns.

    As has been said a number of times on this blog, “you cant get tomorrows price today”.

    1000K may be the market price for this house at the moment, but that doesnt mean he same house wouldnt go for 700K in 6 months. Only time will tell.

  86. Happy Daze says:

    70 Cindy

    My favorite paragraph from that Time article:

    “What they can’t do is manufacture enough artificial demand for an asset that was artificially inflated to begin with. Prices will have to fall, which is how supply is allocated in a market economy. (An occasional reminder is in order given the current spend-money-to-save-money mindset.) “

  87. Mr Hyde says:


    That same house was discussed on this blog a week or so ago, i believe the general consensus was that it was overpriced. Ask Gator, one of the regulars on the blog.

  88. Happy Daze says:

    oops Sorry that was the Bloomberg article from #35

  89. jcer says:

    JPL, a million is nuts for a home that hasn’t really been updated. In this market that money should buy a similar home with newer, nicer kitchens and baths. At that pricing you’d be better off considering a town with lower taxes a la Essex Fells, Franklin Lakes, Florham Park, etc.

  90. Shore Guy says:

    I just saw this in a NYT article about the new plan to assist the imprudent at the expense of the prudent and it got me wondering, what planet the folks proposing these measures came from? Where do tey think the TARP money came from?

    “At a White House briefing, officials emphasized that no new taxpayer money would be used for the programs. Instead, funds to provide incentives for loan servicers to participate would be drawn from the $50 billion allotted to housing in the Troubled Asset Relief Program”

  91. Qwerty says:

    RE: “Obama to Unveil Plan to Reduce Some Home Loans”

    Principal reduction makes comps meaningless. Did the house that sold next door last year sell for $700,000 or $500,000?

  92. A.West says:

    SL, Hyde,
    Things still aren’t as bad as in Atlas Shrugged, at least not yet. It’s still possible to work and achieve happiness in the US, though it’s getting harder. It’s still no worse here than in Sweden, where less than 1% of the population kills itself per year.

    Just in case, though, looks like my wife’s going to quit her job in NJ and sign up for a few years in China. (Much more about the specific job than as a protest against say Obama). In a few years, she can either transfer back here, or we can evacuate to China. The way current trends are progressing, it could well be that the communist country turns out to be more hospitable to capitalists than the faux “capitalist” one. In any case, we’re diversifying our family’s wealth and prospects globally.

  93. Mr Hyde says:

    ANnone notice this tidbit from bergabes testimony yesterday?

    many banks don’t know whether they hold both firsts and seconds and many homeowners are current on seconds while non current on firsts.

  94. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    jpl, you may want to refer to Doom’s #36…

    “Another big drop is imminent. IMO, the real carnage is about to begin.

    When it really gets going in earnest, you’ll be scared to buy a house at any price. When everything is selling for ‘98-’99 prices and UE hits about 35%, there will be many more pressing issues at hand.”

  95. Nomad says:

    83 Comrade

    enlighten me – how much net worth do these rich have and can you give me a name or two…

    are you speaking about folks with many millions who have 2nd homes outside the country for vaca purposes who will retreat there if need be.

  96. Mr Hyde says:

    Awest 99

    Best of luck with china, but i wouldnt bet on china being better then the US as a place to live int he long run. But to each their own.

    Comparing sweden or any other homogeneous culture/population to the US is complete apples to oranges and doesnt really tell us anything.

    Thinks are not as bad as in Atlas Shrugged, you are correct, but we are well on the path to such ends and they seem to be follow they story step by step.

  97. Jamal Van Jones says:

    Boehner to Bankers: Stand Up to ‘Punk’ Staffers
    March 18, 2010, 9:18 am

    Opponents of Senator Christopher J. Dodd’s financial regulation overhaul bill are talking tough, telling bankers how displeased they are without mincing words.

    Representative John A. Boehner, the Republican House minority leader, told members of the American Bankers Association on Wednesday that they need to be unafraid to stand up to whom he called “punk” Senate staffers, according to MarketWatch.

    And even the head of the Office of the Comptroller of Currency took a swipe at the consumer protection aspects of the bill, according to The Financial Times.

    Mr. Dodd, the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee has already been hearing from Republican senators who are unhappy with his decision to forge ahead without first reaching bipartisan consensus. Now House Republicans, according to Mr. Boehner, are arguing that Mr. Dodd’s proposal is too far apart from the financial regulation overhaul bill the House passed in December.

    Here’s what Mr. Boehner said, according to MarketWatch:

    “Don’t let those little punk staffers take advantage of you and stand up for yourselves,” Boehner said. “All of us are hearing from our friends and constituents on lack of credit, you can’t get a loan, the more your government takes and taxes, the more regulations you have to comply with the more cost you have there and less amount you are going to have available to loan to customers….”

  98. A.West says:

    It’s society’s money – government officials say so. Stop acting like you have some right to it. If you want to be a greedy selfish individualist, well it looks like you were born in the wrong century. Now get back to work so you can “give back” to society by paying higher taxes. (The actual commercial things that you do for other people in return for compensation of course has no societal or ethical value because it was done for selfish reasons and mutual benefit.)

    Also, on the way home from work, please stop off and donate your free time by changing a bedpan at the LGBT disabled people of color society.

  99. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    Doctor’s of the world unite?

    Im sure the militia groups could use a few medical battalions.

  100. A.West says:

    All the Swedes I know are via Ayn Rand Institute functions. They’re angry about the socialist trends in the US, but are still comparatively happy to be working here.

  101. jcer says:

    China scares the bejesus out of me. Between a corrupt, hostile government, essentially slave labor, censorship, and the possibility for political instability(1.3 billion people and a food shortage==revolution) I am not entirely certain I’d want to be there. Especially with regards to the mainland, Hong Kong is a little different.

  102. Mr Hyde says:


    Their pollution and tainted products alone must take a good decade or so off of your life span.

  103. jpl says:

    Thanks all… I’ll search the archives for previous discussion on that listing. Curious to see what Gator/Stu thought as well.

    From what I’ve heard, previous family lived there for 40yrs… And by the looks of the interior, that makes sense.

    Trying to balance commute to mid-town, schools, and taxes. So towns like GR are attractive for reasons 1+2. Still trying to come to terms with the taxes though.

    We’re looking in Morris/Union county as well.

  104. A.West says:

    Check out the Ayn Rand Insitute web site, I think you’ll find a lot of material defending the rights of those working in the medical profession.

  105. Jamal Van Jones says:

    Their pollution and tainted products alone must take a good decade or so off of your life span.

    But hey it feels good in the smog to fly your John Galt flag high as the government is nowhere to be seen with its pesky environmental regulations and stuff like that. I am glad that the parasites are not messing with my air.

  106. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Hundreds of thousands of jobless Americans could once again face a disruption in their unemployment benefits after Congress failed to extend them on Thursday.

    Amid the deepest recession in 70 years, Congress prepared to adjourn for a two-week break without extending jobless programs that are due to expire in coming days.


  107. jcer says:

    Hyde with some of the stuff I say about politicians openly, if I were in China I’d probably be in some kind of jail for political prisoners. I pretty much hate them all!

    Also true that about tainted goods, in China you don’t know that what you are drinking is actually coffee, tea or milk, it could be anything! There is no reliable place to buy things and a pretty good chance what you buy is counterfeit.

    Thanks but no thanks, if I were to move to a third world country it would probably be somewhere in South America at least there I can get fresh produce and seafood without the same fear of taint.

  108. jcer says:

    Panama, maybe Mexico? The area north of cancun where the drug lords live is really quite nice.

  109. A.West says:

    Yes, China is scary, and intellectually it’s probably still worse than in the US. My wife was almost shot by the army there 21 years ago. But there is a growing middle/upper middle class, and people who make good money there can live well. Life has been getting better there for a long time. There are lots of factories there that are not sweatshops. And the food tastes better. China will probably have a financial crisis before too long, but possibly after another bubble.

    But the major developed world economies appear to almost universally be headed toward indebted economic decline. Saw a presentation from Citi’s head economist Wednesday that reminded me that there’s no easy way out of the hole these countries are in.

  110. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    I agree that South America is probably the best place to bug out to if one were doing advanced planning.

    Relatively safe from the effects of the Anglo Saxon mission.

  111. Mr Hyde says:


    MMM carboard

    Chopped cardboard, softened with an industrial chemical and made tasty with pork flavoring, is a main ingredient in batches of steamed buns


  112. Mr Hyde says:

    A west

    For those without significant amounts of money, the US may end being the “best of the worst” for a while yet.

  113. A.West says:

    I visited Panama last year on a research trip. Looks to me like the Hong Kong of the Americas, and that’s a good thing. (Relative economic freedom and lower taxes). I’d be long Panama, and suspect some tax exiles might be headed there. I’m not an expert, but it seems to have a number of things going for it and is still growing.

  114. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    HAVANA — It perhaps was not the endorsement President Barack Obama and the Democrats in Congress were looking for.

    Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro on Thursday declared passage of American health care reform “a miracle” and a major victory for Obama’s presidency, but couldn’t help chide the United States for taking so long to enact what communist Cuba achieved decades ago.

    “We consider health reform to have been an important battle and a success of his (Obama’s) government,” Castro wrote in an essay published in state media, adding that it would strengthen the president’s hand against lobbyists and “mercenaries.”

    Can I get a 57 Chevy with that healthcare?

  115. Mr Hyde says:


    what say you?

    South Korean ship sinking;
    torpedo strike feared

    Local media say South Korean Navy fired back in direction of North Korea; the ministry of defense has not confirmed the reports of North Korean involvement

  116. NJGator says:

    JPL – I did post that house a while back. To make a snarky comment on the “Million Dollar Kitchen”. Check the archive…fun responses. The house is on Forest Ave.

    Glen Ridge schools lost 100% of their already meager state aid this year. The average homeowner in town will be seeing an almost $600 tax increase this year just for the school portion of their taxes. This home is assessed well over average, and I expect will see about a $1000 tax increase just for the schools.

    We, too, have been looking in Glen Ridge, but I think the tax burden is going to make a purchase there almost impossible. We already own a home in Montclair that we will be keeping as a rental property. I just don’t think we will have the fortitude to double down on the Essex County tax burden.

    So I must now focus on my list of demands that Stu must fulfill to make me extend my commute so he can make a run for the Morris County border. So far on my list is a nice car and a trip to Paris. Any other sugegstions, folks?

  117. jcer says:

    Panama is stable and benefits tremendously from taxes levied on ships passing through the canal. Provided the government stays out of drug smuggling(i.e doesn’t get involved either in trying to stop it or trying to profit from it) it is stable and the quality of life is decent. Economy is tied to the dollar.

  118. House Hunter says:

    if a mortgage holder takes any of this bailout, (lowered interest rate, loan mod second loan mod etc) then they should have to be audited return the boat, the fancy car in their driveway, the flat screens et. al.
    Just sayin.

  119. jpl says:

    Thanks Gator… Just found the post from 3/16, along with the link to the kitchen and comments. I must have missed it that day…

    I’m surprised by how quickly it’s U/C, thats all.

    Even at 40-50% down, the monthly numbers are pretty grim. We are a young, growing family, so we have additional childcare expenses as well. So mtg/tax/childcare on that place would run ~7-8k month, before we paid for any utilities or insurance. Or food.

    I cant quite get excited about signing up for that yet.

    There is another Forest ave listing coming up, which is actually the house we do like. But it’s priced a touch higher, and taxes are ~25k before the upcoming increase!

    But if 134 is U/C in <2 weeks, I’d be surprised if this listing doesnt move as quick.

  120. Here 4 Now says:

    [re 108] “China scares the bejesus out of me. Between a corrupt, hostile government, essentially slave labor, censorship, and the possibility for political instability(1.3 billion people and a food shortage==revolution) I am not entirely certain I’d want to be there. Especially with regards to the mainland, Hong Kong is a little different.”


    Don’t forget the emerging fascism and unbalanced gender statistics due to selective abortion and the one-child rule; nothing like an authoritarian govt with millions of surplus young men who can’t be “domesticated” via marriage.

    Good times ahead.

  121. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Spring Outlook: Housing Sales Are Looking as Bleak as Ever

    It’s going to be another bad spring for the US housing market-unless you’re a buyer.

    With prices still falling and more distressed homes hitting the market, many experts are expecting the market to get even worse before it gets better. “Buyer’s are pretty much in the driver’s seat.”

    In the meantime, home values are continuing to drop and the amount of distressed property on the market is growing.


  122. NJGator says:

    jpl 127 – It is Forest Ave. Location, location, location.

    Maybe you should try your hand at that $659k Ridgewood Ave listing instead. Also has crazy taxes and needs lots of updating, but the taxes are probably at least appealable.

  123. homeboken says:

    South Korean ship attacked by suspected N. Korean torpedo.

    Gasoline on the flame at the 38th parallel. If this was a true attack, expect tensions to rise quickly. Over 100 sailors on board.


  124. Mr Hyde says:


    If you remember some of my recent charts and follow technical analysis at all, then it looks like we are setup for a potentially substantial step downward between now and december.


  125. Confused in NJ says:

    US healthcare reform is boon for India outsourcing companies

    Mumbai – With 22 pen strokes, President Obama signed into existence not just a historic healthcare reform law but also monumental piles of paperwork: New member registration forms. More claims. Ever-expanding databases. And on top of that, pressure to cut costs.

    The bulge in administrative work may look like a nightmare to American insurance firms and government employees. But to outsourcing executives here in India, it’s heaven-sent. A number of Indian companies are already anticipating an increase in workload thanks to Obama’s healthcare law.

    The addition of 32 million insured Americans is “very significant” for Indian outsourcers, says Ananda Mukerji, chief executive officer of Firstsource Solutions in Mumbai. Companies like his will see “increased opportunities” as US health insurers and hospitals scramble to reorganize to comply with the new law, he wrote in an email to the Monitor.

    This extra work will include processing new enrollments, organizing bigger member databases, processing more claims, providing more support services, and managing more revenue, he says.

    In particular, outsourcers can expect to benefit from insurers’ need to minimize administrative costs, Mr. Mukerji says, citing a recent Deloitte Center for Health Solutions study showing that up to 41 percent of the cost of a health plan is administrative.

    The US healthcare reform offers a “natural extension” of the back-office outsourcing that Indian companies already specialize in, says Tu Packard, a senior economist with Moody’s Economy.com.

    Outsourcing comes to America But some services in the US healthcare industry cannot be outsourced beyond America’s borders due to regulations. That’s one reason major Indian outsourcing firms have set up shop in the United States. In a twist, America’s outsourcers are now outsourcing back to America.

    In 2008, Bangalore-based Wipro opened a development center in Atlanta that employs 500 people, mostly Americans, and runs a call center for a US healthcare client. Tata Consultancy Services has set up a similar campus with 300 employees near Cincinnati. Infosys is planning a subsidiary in Dallas that will hire locals and seek US government contracts.

    Wipro, one of the world’s biggest information technology firms with nearly 100,000 employees worldwide, says the new healthcare law dovetails with two of its focus areas: servicing governments and servicing the healthcare industry. “The healthcare reform should translate to more demand,” says Rajiv Shah, Wipro’s senior vice president for healthcare.

    Wipro plans to double its workforce at the Atlanta office by 2013 and open campuses in other cities, says Suraj Prakash, a vice president at the company. “There will be enough work to be done in the US.”

  126. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    US, Russia sign ‘reset’ pact to cut nuclear arms


    Hmmm, meaningless reduction, lots of praise in the press though, sounds like the Russians are on board trying to prop up a few more years of the powers that be

  127. jpl says:


    Understood about location… I guess I just didnt realize how ‘desirable’ that location was.

    As we’ve only been casually looking for ~6mos, are listings on that street that hard to come by? Not sure if you’ve been looking in GR for longer than that…
    We’ve seen a few listings on Forest on the other side of Bay that didnt appeal to us for reasons beyond the taxes.

  128. still_looking aka Tan-Less says:

    AWest, Will look at it… won’t be until 3 or 4 am, I am off another day in the pit.


  129. WTF says:


    The way current trends are progressing, it could well be that the communist country turns out to be more hospitable to capitalists than the faux “capitalist” one.
    Enjoy all the pollution that comes with a true “free market” capitalist system. I hope you don’t have children that will be subjected to it.

  130. relo says:

    Met a freedy yesteday. BC contractor got on the subject of economy/RE. He allleged that he found a buyer for much less than he owes on a BC McM, brought the offer to the bank (unknown,, will ask him) and said “I’m not paying anymore, here’s an offer – your choice”. He’s now renting around the corner. Never met him before and he had no reason to tell the story, much less lie. I was surprised he was so open about it. This is the new black.

  131. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [102] Nomad

    I cannot give you any accurate info. First, I don’t know with specificity. Second, no attorney will ever give you that info if they have it. And the rich aren’t saying. Remember, they don’t want to attract attention.

    But here is the latest IRS expatriate list. If you cast about, you may find some folks. Note that the vast number of expatriates do so for reasons in addition to, or different from, tax.


    If you google some names, you may learn something. But given that this expat list has more names than the prior 7 quarters combined, it will take a while.

  132. Shore Guy says:

    “Shore, what say you? ‘South Korean ship sinking; torpedo strike feared'”

    I have not spoken with anyone about this so, take this with a grain of salt. When I first heard that the ship suffered an explosion, I thought mine.

    It is one thing to lay a mine in disputed waters and for someone to stumble into it. The nation who laid the mine can say, “Hey, we told you not to come here. You should have been more careful.”

    If they actually fired a torpedo. That is a different matter entirely. This was not a 5″ shell fired across the bow as a warning. Torpedos are for sinking, not warning.

    I was somewhat surprised that PRK did not act up more while we were up to our armpits in Iraq. They must feel neglected.

  133. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “it looks like we are setup for a potentially substantial step downward between now and december.”

    Hyde, awesome analysis.
    It shows the seasonal drops so clearly. well done.

    A further drop reported for q1 is a done deal judging both from your analysis and the listings that i track in my county.

    And q2 and q3 will most likely bounce up again, but the question is how high and strong will the bounce be?
    Will it be enough to form a longer term price support level or will the trend just continue to bounce down after that?

    If i have to make a prediction i would say we continue to stabilize after that. But then again that probably doesnt factor in a Sh!t Storm Part II.

  134. A.West says:

    I’m not aware of a true free market capitalist system anywhere in the world, and I don’t think China has a freer economy than in the US, though there are some libertarians that like to fool themselves into thinking that. Even the relatively freer places are still distorted by proximity to other managed economies.

    But my point is that many capitalists find more opportunities in economies that are becoming more free than in freer economies that are becoming more controlled. The changes involved in each trend open and close opportunities.

  135. Shore Guy says:

    I don’t know about waiting for shoes to drop but, in the UK one better watch out for falling cameras:


    Images of the Earth from the edge of space have been captured by a helium balloon which can travel more than 20 miles above sea level.

    Robert Harrison, of Highburton, West Yorkshire, developed the device after trying to find a way of taking aerial pictures of his home.

    The images are taken by a camera in a box. It is attached to the balloon, with a parachute and tracking device.

    The balloon eventually bursts, returns to ground and is traced by Mr Harrison.


  136. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [125] jcer

    Problem is, Panama may soon be blacklisted by the USG.

    If Carl Levin had his way, we’d invade Panama.

  137. Shore Guy says:

    stop feeling so screwed by all the imprudent getting gifts from or because of the government. 2,000-3,000 sq. ft. is fine, we don’t want anything too big. It does not even need to be ocean view or bayfront. Just close enough to a beach access point to allow us to start and end each day walking beside the surf.

  138. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [102] nomad

    Some quick searching of the expat list suggests that a number of them are dual nationals that are retiring.

    Now retirement is supposed to be tax-advantaged here, yet they are retiring to their native lands and tossing their US passports back at us.

    What does that tell us?

  139. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [112] jamal van jonesing

    “I am glad that the parasites are not messing with my air.”

    Personally, I don’t trust any air I can’t see.

  140. Jamal Van Jones says:

    Personally, I don’t trust any air I can’t see.

    Yo mama so fat when she jumps up in the air she gets stuck!!!

  141. Nomad says:

    Comrade re:139

    Thanks. Impressed that you had the info and appreciate you sharing.

    You said more on list this time than past 7 quarters.

    Looks like 502 names. 502/7 = around 70 people per quarter.

    No need to dig further but would be interesting to know how many people did this per quarter in the 80s and 90s just to get an idea as to how the current #s stack up.

    Probably have to compare it to US pop’n and expats as % of legal immigrants to get a better idea as to how the #s compare.

    I guess when I hear about the potential civil unrest, I wonder if in general, people on this board mean some small skirmishes or if they mean the need to be armed when going to the grocery store to pick up a gallon of milk.

  142. Jamal Van Jones says:

    going to the grocery store to pick up a gallon of milk.

    Ideally, there would be no grocery stores and you will be drinking squirrel milk.

  143. Nomad says:

    “ideally there would be no grocery stores” not sure that is what you mean. probably more like in a worst case scenario there would be no grocery stores. if your ideal today is no grocery stores, can i assume you currently do not partronize them.

    if i need a mammal for milk, probably not going to be a squirrel – not much output.

  144. Shore Guy says:

    VOA is reporting that the ship has gone under with half the crew feared lost.

  145. Final Doom says:

    nomad (73)-

    Stop playing coy. My positions all all this are well documented here.

    I have advocated from the beginning for an armed overthrow of the gubmint. We’re so far gone, nothing else will work. The people in charge of our country are criminals.

  146. Final Doom says:

    chi (89)-

    Doesn’t matter. I had a win bet on Butler at +240. So, a potentially spectacular night was still a good night.

    Nice run your guys had this year.

  147. Final Doom says:

    Shore (97)-

    And people bust my chops for talking about voting with a bullet.

    The only thing that checks the criminality of those who run our gubmint is the rather low ceiling of their collective intelligence. I suppose we should feel blessed.

    I, for one, would prefer just to thin their ranks.

  148. Nomad says:

    Doom 153 – For the record, I understand as a nation that we have some very big problems.

    I asked you two straighforward questions in my post and I assume your lack of response is your response which is what I expected. Your lack of response is probably a smart move on your part.

    Your bravado on this board speaks volumes.

    In the words of Chuck Knoll “kick the side of an oil drum, the ones that make the most noise got nothing in them”.

  149. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Clot 153 ,155 there going to come for you.
    Be careful.

  150. Jamal Van Jones says:

    “ideally there would be no grocery stores” not sure that is what you mean.

    I meant in the ideal apocalyptic world, which this board fantasizes about. As far as squirrel milk goes, you won’t have any choice.

  151. Final Doom says:

    nomad (156)-

    Let me be a little more specific:

    A complete, forcible overthrow of the current gubmint is my idea of an excellent solution to the slow-motion gang r@pe they’re perpetrating on us. To lie about and take it like a bunch of eunuchs on downers speaks volumes as to the cowardice and stupidity to which we’ve sunk. I have no doubt that members of both parties in the gubmint- and virtually all the bureacracy- are licking their chops in anticipation of the day when personal motivation and the fruits of that motivation have been completely stripped from us.

    I work all day at the periphery of a failed pyramid scheme, otherwise known as the US economy. We are in a shambolic state of affairs in which the human equivalent of a pack of feral dogs is marauding through our public and private coffers, pillaging and gorging itself on the last juicy morsels of what little of value actually remains.

    A complete breakdown of society and widespread violence are next on the fail list. Do you suggest that we just continue to follow the orders of criminals and allow ourselves to be subsumed (but, I suppose, remain “happy”: your most-desired of all human states of consciousness); or, should we put up a fight?

  152. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    Generally, when the secret service shows up they ask you if you plan to over throw the government.

    Just say no. They have bigger fish to fry ie the ones that are already off the grid.

  153. Final Doom says:

    mike (157)-

    I stopped caring a long time ago. They will do what they will do.

    The criminals are so filled with confidence, only bullets will stop them now.

    Watch what unfolds the rest of the year. You can look at Greece, Portugal, etc to get a preview.

    Or, look at Japan. There’s a great example of what happens when an entire nation falls into clinical depression and denial.

  154. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Russian ‘Nuke’ Bombers Invade UK Airspace

    Two Russian bombers, capable of carrying nuclear weapons, have been caught flying over British airspace.
    The unwelcome guests spent four hours flying over the Isle of Lewis despite being intercepted by two RAF jets.

    A pair of 111 squadron Tornado F3 fighters took of from RAF Leuchars in Fife to locate the supersonic Tu160 bombers in the Outer Hebrides.

    I hear the distant echoes of the drum beat of world war.

  155. Mr hyde says:


    they came to your door too?

  156. Final Doom says:

    Really, my intent is to get out of the US before it goes to black.

    Trying to help get things back on track here frankly isn’t worth one drop of my sweat or blood. And, I have no doubt they’ll eventually attempt to conscipt my kids to fight whatever fresh war we mangage to start to divert attention away from the criminal gang looting our country.

  157. Mr hyde says:

    Long live the Anglo Saxon illuminati empire!!!!

  158. Outofstater says:

    #159 I guess I’m old-fashioned but I kinda like the Constitution and the idea of putting up a fight by voting at the ballot box.

  159. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    EU draws up plans for single ‘economic government’ to prevent crisis

    Germany and France have tabled controversial plans to create an “economic government of the European Union” to police financial policy across the continent.

    They have put Herman Van Rompuy, the EU President, in charge of a special task force to examine “all options possible” to prevent another crisis like the one caused by the Greek meltdown.

    His mission will be to draw up a master-plan for the best way to oversee and enforce economic targets set in Brussels as a key part of a bail-out package for Greece.

    The options he will consider include the creation of an “economic government” by the by the end of the year.

    “We commit to promote a strong co-ordination of economic policies in Europe,” said a draft text expected to be agreed by EU leaders last night.

    “We consider that the European Council should become the economic government of the EU and we propose to increase its role in economic surveillance and the definition of the EU’s growth strategy.”

    Right on schedule. Engineered financial crisis followed by the solution of world government and eventually depopulation.

  160. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “Trying to help get things back on track here frankly isn’t worth one drop of my sweat or blood. And, I have no doubt they’ll eventually attempt to conscipt my kids to fight whatever fresh war we mangage to start to divert attention away from the criminal gang looting our country.”

    That is a very important statement. There is no way in hell Ill let my kid get conscripted to fight some BS fabricated war. That is where all of this is headed.

  161. Libtard says:

    “There’s a great example of what happens when an entire nation falls into clinical depression and denial.”

    That’s it. I’m selling all of my equities and investing in a Pachinko manufacturer.

  162. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    “Long live the Anglo Saxon illuminati empire!!!!”

    Is it too late to join the Masons?

  163. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “TAMPA – Thousands of people who showed up today looking for work – any work at all – were vivid indicators of how hard the flailing economy has hit the Tampa Bay area. The line of applicants began forming soon after 5 a.m. though the job fair wasn’t scheduled to begin until five hours later.

    Glenn Lawson, 52, was third in line at the Encore construction site, waiting in the pre-dawn darkness. The crowd grew rapidly until, by 10 a.m., some 2,000 people had showed up. They all had stories of job losses, seemingly endless job searches and piecing together ways to survive without paychecks in a city with 13 percent unemployment.

    “I’m out there every day,” said Lawson, who lost his construction job two years ago. “I’m hoping to get a job. I don’t care what kind. Anything I can do to get a steady check coming in, I’ll do.”

  164. Mr hyde says:


    How do the Knights Templar fall into all of this

  165. Final Doom says:

    stater (166)-

    We’re way beyond that stuff as a solution.

    “I guess I’m old-fashioned but I kinda like the Constitution and the idea of putting up a fight by voting at the ballot box.”

  166. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “I kinda like the Constitution and the idea of putting up a fight by voting at the ballot box.”

    Out Of Stater, they already did that but sarah palin lost so now they are going to shoot everyone they see.

  167. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    Not sure bro. Im more worried about the Zionists pulling off another false flag to suck us into war.

    Obama and Netanyahu arent exactly buddies.

    “For a head of government to visit the White House and not pose for photographers is rare. For a key ally to be left to his own devices while the President withdraws to have dinner in private was, until this week, unheard of. Yet that is how Binyamin Netanyahu was treated by President Obama on Tuesday night, according to Israeli reports on a trip viewed in Jerusalem as a humiliation. “

  168. Confused in NJ says:

    Businesses React to Rising Cost of ObamaCare: They’re Cutting Benefits
    Posted Mar 26, 2010 09:32am EDT by Henry Blodget in Healthcare Information, Recession

    Remember the part in the ObamaCare pitch when they said if you like your current healthcare, it won’t change?

    Turns out it might.

    Companies are already announcing that their healthcare premium costs are going through the roof. Some are responding by firing people. Some are cutting benefits. And some are presumably eating it.

    But costs they are a-rising.

    A few examples from the WSJ:
    — Caterpillar said it would cost the company at least $100 million more in the first year alone.
    — Medical device maker Medtronic warned that new taxes on its products could force it to lay off a thousand workers.
    — Verizon announced to employees that it will likely have to cut healthcare benefits to offset the new costs.

    So, people who like your employer-provided health insurance, get ready to pay more or get less.

    Luckily this only applies to the Private Sector. The more deserving people in the Public Sector will be exempt from negative changes.

  169. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Ket, 172 – i like that softball question as a set-up for the nutcase. He can go on all day about that subject.
    He watched about 120 you tube videos on it.

  170. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    Remember the conversation about the State Police saying, “Sucks to be the public?”

    Well those that depend on the government and have no real skills other than shuffling papers and sitting in patrol cars playing tetris on their blackberries all day are in for an awakening.

    “State Police plan massive layoffs, HQ closures.
    The Illinois State Police will lay off more than 460 troopers and close five regional headquarters by this fall, acting State Police director Jonathon Monken said Tuesday.”

  171. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Al, who shot JFK?, why? and what was the name of the planet they came from?

  172. Mr Hyde says:


    I saw an analysis yesterday that showed for the average small to medium sized business it was more cost effective to drop all coverage and pay the penalty then it was to keep any form of coverage for employees.


  173. Mr Hyde says:


    perhaps this is more appropriate:


    the setup for getting the sheeple to demand single payer is coming along swimmingly

  174. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    I have some crayons and coloring books for you. When you are done Ill make you some PB&J with the crusts cut off just the way you like it.

    Mommy loves his little man child.

  175. Mr Hyde says:


    my wife works for a small business and they announced a cut to benefits yesterday due to cost of the new regulations

  176. NJGator says:

    JPL – Stu and I have definitely been looking in a much more modest price range. Forest is definitely considered a “premium” street in town – more so above Bay Avenue and south of Sunset.

    There’s probably no more “prestigious” address outside of Ridgewood Ave.

  177. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Al, about that global warming conspiracy video you posted.
    I loved it.
    It was credible and scientifically accurate.
    And i like the way he kept referring to ‘his sources’.
    The only thing that i cant figure out was that it was 2007-08 when he recorded it and he said by 2009 the floods would be severe and the economy would collapse.
    Being that its 2010, shouldnt we be underwater bye now?
    Please post more you tube links. We need to be lightened up in here. Thanks buddy.

  178. Mr Hyde says:

    The end result of O-care is that the health insurance companies will see a substantial mixshift from a high ratio of young/healthy:older/sick to a low ratio of young/healthy:older/sick.

    Given that they cannot drop anyone that guarantees costs will skyrocket.

  179. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    Yeah that one was tough for even me to believe. Good to see you not buying into the global warming scam. You are coming along nicely little one.

  180. Confused in NJ says:

    180.Mr Hyde says:
    March 26, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    I saw an analysis yesterday that showed for the average small to medium sized business it was more cost effective to drop all coverage and pay the penalty then it was to keep any form of coverage for employees

    And healthier, given the nature of the current Healthcare System. Prior to 2000 I went to the doctor for Sick Care only, and most of the time he made me well, and life was good. Post 2000 I got roped into Well Care and put on a stream of pills that made me sick most of the time, until I woke up and realized medicine had changed. I now avoid the doctor religiously, and only use ready access for urgent care, so as to avoid pseudo faux ailment treatments. I prefer to die naturally without medical assistance. Regarding Chemotherapy, like most Oncologists, No Thanks, not for me.

  181. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [183] hyde

    “my wife works for a small business and they announced a cut to benefits yesterday due to cost of the new regulations”


    Oh, and Bi promised there’d be no more writedowns.

  182. Mr Hyde says:

    For everyone who thinks that we jump on government employee’s too much, including teachers, fireman, cops etc…. take a look


  183. John says:

    All small business will pay fine, makes more sense. However, the good news is the fines will go to give free medical to all the unemployed people and ilegal immigrants! But the people working at small companies still won’t have it.

  184. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    Make sure you get your vaccines though. Wouldnt want to let down Norvatis and Kathleen Sebelius.

  185. Confused in NJ says:

    You don’t see the major Networks, other then Fox, even talking about the Medicare coverage reductions, or impact on private employer coverage. First thing Hitler did was have Goebels take over the news with propoganda.

  186. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [181] hyde

    “the setup for getting the sheeple to demand single payer is coming along swimmingly”

    Hadn’t I been saying this all along???

  187. Mr Hyde says:


    We both have.

  188. Mr Hyde says:

    Obama is probably doing a very nice job of setting this nation up for a suave and unsavory manipulative leader to follow.

  189. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    14% of America already think he is the antichrist.

  190. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [148] JVJ

    You know that joke made no sense, right?

  191. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    I believe that once our nation is under civil unrest, martial law, and broken into several regions due to the impending total economic collapse; the Russian government and allies might be planing a full scale incursion of America.

  192. Confused in NJ says:

    192.Al “The Thermostat” Gore says:
    March 26, 2010 at 2:45 pm


    Make sure you get your vaccines though. Wouldnt want to let down Norvatis and Kathleen Sebelius

    Last time I got shots of any type was VietNam. A doctor in 2006 wanted me to get the Shingles shot, but I had already contracted Shingles in 1995. He said I needed it anyway. I contacted the FDA and they told me it was not recommended for people who had already had Shingles as they were not in the Merk test group which got the approval. Gave him a copy of FDA reply and pissed him off as it contradicted his Merk marketing document. Also corrected Dr Donahue in Star LOedger who was giving the same bad advice working from the Big Pharma Document. Bottom line, don’t believe anything until you independently verify it yourself.

  193. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “the Russian government and allies might be planing a full scale incursion of America”

    per You Tube.

  194. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Okay, here’s my latest take on the lie and die bumper sticker wars:


    Mixed in a little Joe Wilson meme there. And the real hard core lefties can use it too, to protest the war.

  195. Confused in NJ says:

    l “The Thermostat” Gore says:
    March 26, 2010 at 2:51 pm

    14% of America already think he is the antichrist

    14% is the Republican & Democrat number. If you factor in Independents like me, it’s higher. I said during the election campaign the choices are the 1. Manchurian Candidate or the 2. Anti-Christ.

  196. Barbara says:

    its funny, this romance this country has with the employer based healthcare status quo. A few hundred years ago, being forced to work for a particular in order to keep your sick loved one alive might have been likened to indentured servitude.
    BTW single payer and universal health care are not necessarily one in the same.

  197. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    lol I agree, its getting awfully biblical around here.

  198. Painhrtz says:

    Hyde we might be cutting our research budget due to the health bill. I will probably be unemployed because of it. FCking communists. Aren’t we the types they round up for the gulags. Have to read up on my solzenitzen to prepare

    By the way reading the blog on a BlackBerry is awful

  199. Mr Hyde says:


    I think he’s more of a puppet then anything else. definitely not the anti-christ.

  200. Anon E. Moose says:

    Al oldie but a goodie – some pleople knew in 2008 that Obama would be paying their mortgage.


  201. Mr Hyde says:


    yes, we are probably fairly high up on the list. Its the classic behead the “enemy” tactic.

    Have never read alexander solzenitzen, but perhaps i should so that i am better prepared for my new career ;)

  202. njescapee says:

    208, Anon, enough to make me want to hurl.

  203. Shore Guy says:

    From CNN:

    “Washington (CNN) — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid mistakenly called out “no” Thursday when asked for his vote on the health care reconciliation bill, setting the chamber howling with laughter.

    Reid voted the wrong way when the clerk called for his vote, realized his error and quickly changed his vote to “yes.”

    “He did it again,” someone said amid laughter.

    Reid, who spent months persuading fellow senators to vote “yes” on President Obama’s top domestic priority, made the same mistake December 24 when voting on the original health care bill.”


  204. Mr Hyde says:


    he was a busy guy:

    Solzhenitsyn married a chemistry student Natalia Alekseevna Reshetovskaya.[8] They divorced in 1952 (a year before his release from the Gulag); he remarried her in 1957[9] and they divorced again in 1972. The following year (1973) he married his second wife, Natalia Dmitrievna Svetlova, a mathematician who had a son from a brief prior marriage.[10] He and Svetlova (b. 1939) had three sons: Yermolai (1970), Ignat (1972), and Stepan (1973).[11]

  205. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [149] nomad

    Expatriation has been more or less constant for a lot of years now. For most people, there is little effect on their lives, and it makes sense to keep the US passport. For most, that will continue to be true.

    Someone made a chart that I linked to several days ago. Absolutely scary, but in terms of actual numbers, quite small.

    But according to another chart I saw, the number of tax returns filed for income subject to the top bracket is less than 900,000. I think that is less than 1% of all income tax returns.

    Say you only lose a few thousand. That is still a small group. But if those few thousand represent total income tax revenues of 5%, that’s a big hit.

    Consider also that the top 1% of wealthy pay something like 40% of all income taxes. Now suppose you lose just one quarter of that group, which is just 0.25% of all taxpayers.

    Small number, hardly felt, right? No, you lose 10% of your income tax revenue. And with the new tax structure shifting taxes to the “wealthy” you actually lose more.

    Think I’d be happy if they left? Heck no. I’d get stuck with the bill.

  206. Confused in NJ says:

    AT&T will take $1B non-cash charge for health care
    AT&T will take a $1 billion non-cash charge in first quarter related to the health care bill

    In this March 23, 2010 photo, AT&T President and CEO Randall Stephenson delivers a keynote speech during the CTIA wireless show, in Las Vegas. AT&T said Friday, March 26, it will take a $1 billion non-cash charge in the first quarter related to the health care overhaul.(AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

    NEW YORK (AP) — AT&T Inc. said Friday it will take a $1 billion non-cash charge in the first quarter related to the health care overhaul.

    AT&T’s charge is the largest announced so far. Earlier this week, AK Steel Corp., Caterpillar Inc., Deere & Co. and Valero Energy announced similar accounting charges, saying the health care law that President Barack Obama signed Tuesday will raise their expenses.

    AT&T said the charge is to reflect the change of the tax treatment of Medicare subsidies. Companies say the health care overhaul will make a subsidy that companies receive for retiree drug coverage taxable in 2011.

    AT&T also said it is looking into changing the health care benefits it offers to active and retired workers because of the legislation. Analysts say retirees could lose the prescription drug coverage provided by their former employers.

    AT&T rival Verizon Communications Inc. was among 10 companies that sent a letter to congressional leaders in December warning that their costs would increase with the health care changes. Verizon did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

    AT&T shares climbed 7 cents to $26.22 in afternoon trading

    Gee looks like I’ll lose my AT&T Drug Plan, which after I spend $2,760 in premiums and satisfy a $2,400 deductible, will pay a percentage of adulterated Generic Drug costs unless I want a non adulterated Brand name, in which case I pay the full cost myself. Thank goodness the High Deductible Plan put in place in 2003 by Bush is so terrible that it limits the bad effects of the Obama Plan. Hard to make really bad, badder. Now if they would apply the Obamacare to the Teachers, you would hear some real effect and screaming. Too bad their exempt.

  207. Mr Hyde says:

    Why do all of the really good bills get passed after hours and on the weeks? I mean look at how the Federal Reserve Act was enacted, of the health care bill as well as a number of others in between.

  208. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    Anon, yeah that tit sucker had more insight then I did at the time. Career welfare queens could read right through Obamas rhetoric.

    Pain, Hyde. I wouldnt worry too much about rank on the list. The activity at my local range is absurd and people arent playing with pop guns. Im just thankful that Im surrounded by like minded people.

  209. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [204] barbara

    I guess the two primary objections folks have to Obamacare are:

    1. It won’t cost less, and will likely cost more.

    2. Your treatment will come from people who are now essentially government employees without the cushy pensions.

  210. Mr Hyde says:


    if people are pissed now, what happens when they try to ram through a new amnesty program for illegals?

  211. Confused in NJ says:

    207.Mr Hyde says:
    March 26, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    I think he’s more of a puppet then anything else. definitely not the anti-christ.

    Hard to say, very few members of Congress are able to cast a reflection in a mirror. Don’t know what the Demon Ranking Scheme is.

  212. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    Fantastic Panzner Chart re South Korea Attack:


    I guess when most of the trading is done via computers running algorithims the whole world could blow up and the market would end on an up day.

  213. Barbara says:

    I was against the bill, stopped paying close attention a few months back when it was clear that it wouldn’t save me a dime and was a big gimme to the insurance industry. The tone of the debate, that all of a sudden draconian controls would be put in place if the bill passed is what gives this national debate zero credibility. We already have draconian controls and corporate monopolies in the for of NJBCBS and the handful of other major players that practice collusion.

  214. Confused in NJ says:

    207.Mr Hyde says:
    March 26, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    I think he’s more of a puppet then anything else. definitely not the anti-christ.

    The Fish does Stink from the Head, though.

  215. TB72 says:

    March 26, 2010 at 2:52 pm
    I believe that once our nation is under civil unrest, martial law, and broken into several regions due to the impending total economic collapse; the Russian government and allies might be planing a full scale incursion of America.

    Its a shame that patrick Swayze died.

  216. Barbara says:

    if this board goes fundy/evangelical its toast. I hope grim puts the hurt on you dopes.

  217. Dissident HEHEHE says:


  218. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    World Mourns As Communist Darkness Falls Upon America

    “More insidious than these takeovers that have been destroying America’s once vibrant capitalistic system is the new regime these once free peoples are now destined to live under, and where under their new health care law will require all of them to carry a National ID card (page 58) and allow their government unlimited access to all of their bank accounts and personal records (page 159).

    And in a chilling instance of the ancient prophecies for these time of “The Mark of the Beast” becoming reality, the National ID card all of the American people will now be required to possess (regardless of age) is to be combined with their new government ID card under their upcoming new immigration laws allowing them to work and is biometrically designed to “read” the backs of their hands.

    [Note: According to the Christian Bibles Book of Revelations, the ancients warned of a future time when everyone, both small and great, rich and poor, free or slave, would receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads which without they would not be able buy or sell anything.]”


  219. Painhrtz says:

    Helter skelter

    Last post blackberry sucks have nice weekend closer to oblivion

  220. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    224 – barb, all the talk about slowly sliding into the abyss, who knew they were referring to the board?

    i wish all the wackjobs would pack up and move to their 3rd world country of choice already, preferably somewhere that does not have internet access.

  221. Rusty says:

    I aint goin nowhere. Imma stay rightchere and watch the mayhem from teh front row.

  222. Rusty says:

    Poor some sugar on me.

  223. Outofstater says:

    #218 They have no choice but to ram through an amnesty plan for illegals. They have made so many people mad about the healthcare bill that they need a new pool of voters to stay in power.

  224. Mr Hyde says:

    veto 228

    Hey, i take personal offense at that!!!

  225. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Recession over!

    These people bought this condo in 2006 for $309k – yet they have absolutely no shame in asking for the same price 3 years later after the entire market has melted down 20-25%.


  226. John says:

    Unless you are paris hilton or lindsey lohan who have to be turned upside down to smell the fish stink.

    Confused in NJ says:
    March 26, 2010 at 3:20 pm
    207.Mr Hyde says:
    March 26, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    I think he’s more of a puppet then anything else. definitely not the anti-christ.

    The Fish does Stink from the Head, though.

  227. John says:

    Only in New Jersey can public workers demand they get paid out sick days upon retirement and then threaten to strike if they have to pay a copay to go to doctor or buy prescription drugs.

    If you never get sick why are you going to the doctor and CVS all the time?

  228. Mr Hyde says:


    “Violence is as American as cherry pie.” Most of what passes for history in the schools nowadays (and there is not much of it) is really Whig history. Progress is inevitable, and things always work out for the best. It is the modern version of trial by combat, where God would strengthen the arm of the righteous. The good guys always win, and the bad guys always lose. To any sentient person, this is obviously a load of crap. I think we should celebrate Shay’s Rebellion, and the Whiskey Rebellion, and one way that we will know that the politicos in Gomorrah on the Potomac have finally “gotten it” is if they set up a memorial to that great American Patriot, Aaron Burr, in the form of a public pistol range. Burr was not only a fine shot, but a genuine patriot, and a man of principles. He showed all of these fine qualities by shooting Hamilton, and then, after being acquitted of treason, took care of poor old Luther Martin, the attorney who won his case, in his alcohol befogged dotage. But, I do not expect that public pistol range to be built any time soon, and I can vouch for the fact that almost none of our high school graduates have ever heard of either Burr or Martin, despite their being two extremely important figures in the early history of our once Republic.”
    -H. Rap Brown

  229. Anon E. Moose says:


    One thing I’ve learned in house shopping during the meltdown is how many listed houses aren’t really for sale.

    Usually its because the seller won’t accept reality. The used house sales flack, GED, ‘bought’ the listing by blowing smoke up their azz about how much they could get for it. So it sits.

    Sometimes the listing itself is just a charade. Perhaps the bank wants ‘exposure to the market’ at a price that will pay off the loan before they will consider a short sale (this is not uncommon, and is most likely a stalling tactic on the bank’s part; they want. So the listing goes up at something no one will pay, only to prove that no one will pay it.

    Now if only there were a group of professionals who could sift through the chaff of such listings and pick out the wheat to present to buyers. I bet people interested in buying houses would pay money for a service like that. Instead they pay for access to listing data, and in exchange have to be told over and over again “This neighborhood is SPECIAL”.

  230. Rusty says:

    235. Filling scrips for SSRIs

  231. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “Now if only there were a group of professionals who could sift through the chaff of such listings and pick out the wheat to present to buyers”

    Annon, imo this what an agent should be doing. I guess thats naive of me to say.

    I wonder how long before agents are replaced by online auctions lasting one week. (ebay realty)

  232. John says:

    I settle for smoking hot realtors to take me around rather than these washed up old hags. If I am going to blow money I at least want to get blown.

    veto that – Lawrence Yun says:
    March 26, 2010 at 4:41 pm
    “Now if only there were a group of professionals who could sift through the chaff of such listings and pick out the wheat to present to buyers”

    Annon, imo this what an agent should be doing. I guess thats naive of me to say.

    I wonder how long before agents are replaced by online auctions lasting one week. (ebay realty)

  233. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [236] hyde

    In certain parts of western Mass. (where I went to college), they still celebrate Shays rebellion.

  234. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Traffic Alert:

    Many streets blocked off around Gateway in Newark, including McCarter Highway.

    No reason seen, but you all would be well advised to avoid this area.

  235. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    John, Realty/Prostitution under the same shingle?
    Isn’t that kind of like a whole life policy?

  236. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [228] veto

    Sorry, not leaving without our half of the country. We paid for it, we own it.

    Better yet, will the libs join with the conservatives in calling for a constitutional convention?

    I am pretty sure that this will settle the issue.

  237. John says:

    The Primerica offering consists of 18.0 mn shares, with an over-allotment option of 2.7 mn shares. At the mid-point of the indicative price range of USD12.00 – USD14.00 per share (USD13.00), the company will raise gross proceeds of approximately USD234 mn. The IPO offering only entails a dilution of stakes of current shareholders (Citigroup) and does not include any fresh equity issue. The common shares are to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange on 01 April 2010.

    Our outlook for the Primerica is positive, considering our anticipation of robust revenue growth over the next few years supported by strong demand for term insurance and mutual fund products. In addition, the company’s distribution model avoids the higher costs associated with advertising and media channels, which we believe will positively impact the company’s operating margin, going forward. Based on the details available from the company’s prospectus and our fundamental valuation of the company, we value the Primerica common stock at USD16.05 per share, representing an upside of 23.5% from the mid-point of the offer price range (USD13.00). Therefore, we rate the Primerica IPO a SUBSCRIBE on fundamental grounds.

    Primerica Inc (Primerica) is the leading distributor of financial products to middle income households in North America. Through its 100,000 sales representatives, the company underwrites term life insurance and distributes mutual funds, variable annuities and other financial products on behalf of third parties.

  238. Shore Guy says:

    Shay was hanged, no?

  239. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [214] confused

    “Hard to make really bad, badder. ”

    Welcome to Hope and Change.

    As Inspector Renault would say “I’m Shocked, Shocked, to discover that there will be cost-shifting going on here.”

  240. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [246] shore

    No. Daniel Shays, and most of the men involved in the rebellion, were pardoned.

  241. Shore Guy says:

    The thought of our current crop of elected officials conducting a constitutional convention is a frightening one. I have greater faith in slow and incremental change via amendments than the one-fell-swoop of a convention.

    I for one would like an amemdment that specifies how to reconstitute congress and SCOTUS in the event of a huge disaster/attack that takes out a large number of the members of each body. Also, hving some mechanism for naming a president under such conditions, perhaps by governors, either by population according to the last census or by admission to the union) would notbe a bad idea either.

    For that matter, given telecommunications technology, we might do well to distribute agencies across the nation, so that a single airburst can’t bring the wheels of government to a standstill.

  242. Juice Box says:

    re: #245 – John if you are going to put 13k on the line to make 3k make sure you have the sell order to go in on the 16th day, so you don’t have to be holding the bag on this one.

  243. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [246] shore

    There are streets in Amherst, MA. named after the prominent families of the area, and many of those families had members in the rebellion. Shays and Shattuck are two that come to mind.

    As an aside, the rebellion started in Uxbridge, Mass. The Uxbridge Minutemen still exist as an official group, and I stayed in an inn owned by that group’s leader, who filled me in on their history.

  244. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [249] shore

    There has never been a constitutional convention in our history.

    Once more than one governor calls for one, we had best not be holding dollars.

  245. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    And here is my last cheery note for the day, courtesy of the fun folks at CNBC:

    “Many Americans know the deficit has exploded this year. What may be less well-known is that the problem is not confined to this year or next, but stretches out at least a decade and represents a historic, multi-trillion-dollar change in the country’s fiscal fortunes.

    CNBC, working with the Congressional Budget Office, found that the 10-year outlook for the nation’s deficit has deteriorated by almost $8 trillion. In effect, every man, woman and child in the United States has taken on an extra $25,000 in debt, CNBC has learned.

    Comparing the CBO’s outlook in 2008 to the current forecast, CNBC found that what was once a projected $247 billion surplus for the years 2009 through 2018, is now an estimated $7.4 trillion deficit.

    What caused it? According to the CBO, 57 percent of the increase was caused by the decline in revenues, of which a vast majority resulted from the agency’s outlook for the economy.

    Specifically, Social Security accounts for a huge part of the revenue change. According to the network’s analysis, Social Security was expected to show a $2.3 trillion surplus over the 10-year period from 2009-2018. However, new figures show that if a surplus for the agency will exist at all, it is projected to be just over $1 trillion.

    Adding to the deterioration is a range of expenses and methodology, including the stimulus bill, a change in accounting for the war, extended unemployment benefits and additional interest on debt. . . .”

    Hope and Change, my friends, Hope and Change.

  246. jcer says:

    two words I want to hear from the government:

    Cut and Costs

  247. jcer says:

    Not Hope and Change, but Cut Costs!

  248. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [253] redux

    So when the folks in a red state say “fcuk this shi-t, why stay and pay”, well, now you know why I wanted the nompound to be in a red state.

    Just a silly prediction, but I think that in the event things start looking really bad (like we are running up huge debt, the rich have bolted, and U6 is nearing 25%), rural and semi-rural red state property will be the only asset appreciating.

    And I know my lib friends don’t agree, but that is okay with me. I don’t mind.

    Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.

  249. sas says:

    ok everyone… break is over. get back to work.

    pay for retirement, health care, and mortgage.

    ahh..I love entitlements.

    what? me worry, not if I have you..the SAP!


  250. toomuchchange says:

    Relieved to find out that Senator Graham says no immigration reform this year.

    Thank God. The illegal foreigners can all wait for the crisis to pass. In the meantime, let us hope more go home. Now if we can only start cutting the number of work visas issued to nonessential foreign workers, we might have more jobs for Americans.

    Now, what I want to know is when we going to start focusing on our #1 problem — getting the economy (and ourselves) on a good track for the future?

    Obviously we can’t continue doing what we’re doing, but no one in charge is talking about alternatives. Green jobs are good but a small answer to an immense problem.

    The unemployed — which includes me — and the anxious and worried — which includes me and you too — are waiting.

  251. blindjust says:

    237 Anon: “One thing I’ve learned in house shopping during the meltdown is how many listed houses aren’t really for sale.”

    That’s exactly what I’m seeing. Prices in the areas I’m looking are down @15%. Those that are more are either on a cliff or busy road.

    “We tried selling our three bedroom home last year at this time but couldn’t get our price,” says one homeonwer from Morris Township, New Jersey, who fixed the home in order to sell and make a profit. “We are waiting for prices to go up. We really don’t want to sell it now.”


  252. Shore Guy says:


    Not since the first one, anyway. Remember Annapolis followed by Philly, 1780s?

  253. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Traffic update

    Fatal accident nxt to gateway ctr in newark

    Nccarter closed sb

  254. Orion says:

    Where’s BFF?!
    Slacking here….

  255. NJGator says:

    Stu hit a nice Royal in AC! Our pre-Morris County trip to Paris is now fully funded.

    Meanwhile Lil Gator and I are enjoying a date night at Holsten’s. No sign of the Sopranos yet.

  256. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    “Sorry, not leaving without our half of the country. We paid for it, we own it.”

    Indeed. I would also argue that you cant keep what you cant defend. So I am going to annex there part as well.

  257. make money says:

    Just another reason not to pay your mortgage. Only the stupid and the larcenous win.


    My point precisely. I stopped paying mortage over 8 months ago on some properties. They havent even contacted me since I told them that if they don’t restructure my debt they can have the properties.

    Meanwhile all this time, I’m collecting whatever rents I can get my hands on. about to hire Palin as a side prize if they pay on time and in cash.

  258. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    You are a real hardcore Neocon. The legislation is already there. There is no doubt in my mind where this is going to end up. The pain inflicted upon the naive will be fun to watch.

    Executive Order 13528 of January 11, 2010

    Establishment of the Council of Governors
    By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 1822 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-181), and in order to strengthen further the partnership between the Federal Government and State governments to protect our Nation and its people and property, it is hereby ordered as follows:

    Section 1. Council of Governors.

    (a) There is established a Council of Governors (Council). The Council shall consist of 10 State Governors appointed by the President (Members), of whom no more than five shall be of the same political party. The term of service for each Member appointed to serve on the Council shall be 2 years, but a Member may be reappointed for additional terms.
    (b) The President shall designate two Members, who shall not be members of the same political party, to serve as Co-Chairs of the Council.

  259. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Road rage, accident centers on Obama bumper sticker

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. – “A Nashville man says he and his 10-year-old daughter were victims of road rage Thursday afternoon, all because of a political bumper sticker on his car.

    Mark Duren told News 2 the incident happened around 4:30p.m., while he was driving on Blair Boulevard, not far from Belmont University.

    He said Harry Weisiger gave him the bird and rammed into his vehicle, after noticing an Obama-Biden sticker on his car bumper.

    Duren had just picked up his 10-year-old daughter from school and had her in the car with him.

    “He pointed at the back of my car,” Duren said, “the bumper, flipped me off, one finger salute.”

    But it didn’t end there.

    Duren told News 2 that Weisiger honked his horn at him for awhile, as Duren stopped at a stop sign.

    Once he started driving again, down Blair Boulevard, towards his home, he said, “I looked in the rear view mirror again, and this same SUV was speeding, flying up behind me, bumped me.”

    Duren said he applied his brake and the SUV smashed into the back of his car.

    He then put his car in park to take care of the accident, but Weisiger started pushing the car using his SUV.

    Duren said, “He pushed my car up towards the sidewalk, almost onto the sidewalk.”

    Police say Harry Weisiger is charged with felony reckless endangerment in the incident.”

  260. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Nom, every time nompound is mentioned i think of ‘lord of the flies’ where the character Ralph is played by Al.

    I wonder what would be a scarier place during an economic collapse mixed with food shortage riots? The nompound or the city of newark?

  261. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    You better practice the fetal position because you wont fit in your mothers womb.

  262. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Oh, Al, there you are.

    Say, shouldnt you be researching Lock Ness or Crop Circles at this time of the evening?

  263. gary says:

    Should I say it once more? In 5 to 10 years, there will be no such thing as landing a job in the private sector with any benefits whatsoever. You will all be employed on a “contract” basis. The country that was previously known as the United States of America is gone. I wish I was as young as most who post here because being older has enabled me to experience what this country was like when we were a true democracy and it saddens me that I have to savor memories now and not create them anymore.

    You who are around my age know what I’m talking about. Our children will never know what true freedom is all like. This administration has marked the beginning of a new model that defines America and I’m truly saddened by it. Mortgages being paid by tax dollars, bailouts for selected groups, redistribution of wealth… How did we get to this point? We grew up working for whatever we got and never expected assistance of any magnitude! The WWII generation lived on bread and water, fought a world war, lived on more bread and water, built the strongest country in the history of time and put a man on the moon to complete the masterpiece. What has happened that we’ve become so weak? Where is the fight and hunger that made us so great? Perhaps it’s just a cycle and we’ll be a passionate nation again. One could only wish…

  264. njescapee says:

    Gary, you’re absolutely correct. The USA has ceased to be a nation and is now only a market. We have lost our national identity.

  265. Jim says:

    You are correct. The US of A as we have known it is dead in the water. B.O. is going to S0cialize whatever is left. It was a good run while it lasted. Fifty years from now Mexicans will be saying, “Hey, didn’t they speak English in this county years ago?”

  266. njescapee says:

    Centennial Bank takes over Key West Bank
    Centennial Bank has taken over the faltering Key West Bank.

    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. shut down Key West Bank on Friday, a month after federal regulators issued a directive that the one-branch bank must be merged or acquired by another financial institution because it is so severely undercapitalized.

    The takeover saves the bank from being shut down. The bank will be open on Saturday.

    Centennial now has two branches in Key West. Account balances have been transferred to Centennial Bank and will be available for transactions during regular business hours, officials said Friday. Customers will continue to use the same checks and debit cards until notified. All direct deposits, including Social Security checks, will continue as usual, they said.

    All mortgages and loans have been assumed by Centennial Bank. Customers’ payment amounts and due dates are the same.

  267. gary says:

    It’s a very sad scene… We simply have no b@lls, no stamina and no will. We don’t punch back, we give in. We’ve become so fat and stupid, even the issues we debate are ridiculous. Again, for anyone who has had a taste of yesterday, you know what I’m talking about.

  268. gary says:

    The fundamentals are void, the basics are gone. When is the last time someone behind the counter in a store actually counted your change up and handed you the coins and then the bills in an orderly fashion. It’s the basics… we don’t even master that so it’s no wonder that we’re lead like mindless bags of sh1t to believe whatever’s handed to the masses.

  269. Confused in NJ says:

    As I said before the last Honest American President was DDE (I like Ike). The Great Society started by JFK/LBJ was the start of the fall of America. They turned us into a Wefare State, created third world immigration, and put us into VietNam to suck our resources down the worlds rat hole. Nixon eliminated the draft. The Roman Empire did the same thing, hiring mercenaries for their armies, as part of their decline. A Country whose Citizens refuse to defend it, is a Country whose days are numbered. Each President after IKE took us down this path incrementaly, leading the Sheeple to Obamageddon.

  270. Final Doom says:

    moose (237)-

    It’s your own fault you’re too lazy to find a good agent.

  271. njescapee says:

    Gary, My son lives in NJ. He’s 29 yo, college grad with considerable work experience, has been unemployed for nearly 6 mos. During that time he did a 90 day gig at some hole in Secaucus. He echoes your experience the best jobs available are $12/hr w/o benefit jobs with lots of applicants.

  272. Final Doom says:

    gary (271)-

    It’s over. Toast. Third World jerkwater. The coming riots and the suppression of same by the gubmint will render us identical to Mexico…and just about as relevant.

    Me? I’m just stepping up the pressure on my family to get out.

    If we wait too long, I’ll just go broke & then it will really suck getting out and having no money.

  273. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    Great posts. Regarding why it has come to this. Its called subversion. The most dangerous enemy is the traitor. This started a long time ago.
    1. Demoralization. Make the people think they cant do anything for themselves. Seek an expert. ie Personal defense, raising and educating kids, health etc
    2. Destabilization. Illegal immigration, ACORN, militias, SIEU, gay rights etc.
    3. Crisis. Economic is playing out now worldwide soon will be war. All engineered.
    4. Normalization. Tanks roll in ie Hungary in the 50’s. Or like the Cold Autumn wind. The wind is still blowing and the birds are still chirping but everything is different.

    Thats how you take down a country.

  274. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    Get your bullion ready. Talked to my wife at dinner tonight.

    I told her that if I dont fight then our son will have to. If the people or states dont stand up then we will have to move.

    Ultimately, I believe, a handful of states will successfully implement their 10th amendment rights. That is where I will go with my wealth.

    There is a 10th amendment initiative in NJ. The govenors office is taking a tally. 609-292-6000.

  275. Rusty says:

    She’s a lucky lady Al. A lucky lady. Such a strong leader for a mate.

  276. sas says:

    this border talk is a joke.

    mexican cartels are fighting the CIA for black money market share of illegal drug war.

    total sham, when you hear these knucklehead on the news blaming the “cartels”. what a joke!

    yes, you will always have some mean & nasty gangs here and there. but they are small potatoes.


  277. sas says:

    don’t even get me started about the illegal diamond trade out of Brazil & the Canadian hedge funds that out up the inital capital.


  278. sas says:

    BFF baby!

    Desert Hills Bank, Phoenix, AZ
    Unity National Bank, Cartersville, GA
    Key West Bank, Key West, FL
    McIntosh Commercial Bank, Carrolton, GA

  279. safeashouses says:

    You guys really need to lighten up. I think we are at or near the bottom for re in the better towns. You can buy a house with a 15% to 20% down payment and have a monthly payment equal or lower than renting a similar place in that town. There are still fantasy peak pricing going on out there, but anything in a good town in good shape and a good location with a 2002 to 2004 price sells in a few weeks.

    The towns that rely on FHA financing for their deals I think are still going to fall more.

  280. safeashouses says:

    #286 sas

    glad to see you posting. I thought you might have been Robert Culp. glad I was wrong.

  281. sas says:

    “glad to see you posting. I thought you might have been Robert Culp”

    i come and go these days.


  282. Final Doom says:

    safe (287)-

    It’s all going to fall more. Towns that don’t trade in the FHA range have no protective cover. If anything, they will get hit last & worst, as there’s no trade-up market and the property ladder is irretrievably broken.

  283. Final Doom says:

    Look at the wealthy areas in Hunterdon/Somerset (Tewks, Peapack, Far Hills, etc). It’s a bloodbath on the high end. I saw a big chunk of 100K+ price reductions this week, and the FK filings began to tick up in January.

    Pretty soon, that disease will move east of 287 and little Graydon will be SOL for his private lacrosse training.

  284. Confused in NJ says:

    Ex-Keansburg schools superintendent settles $550K severance dispute
    By Claire Heininger/Statehouse Bureau
    March 26, 2010, 7:34PM
    KEANSBURG — A retired schools superintendent from Monmouth County will not collect a controversial severance package worth $556,290 under a settlement with the state announced today.

    After a nearly two-year legal battle that sparked taxpayer anger and new state limits on administrative pay, an attorney for former Keansburg superintendent Barbara Trzeszkowski said she gave up the payout for a simple reason: The kids need it more.

    “We believed that we had a valid contract, and we could continue the litigation, but in the current economic environment and what’s going on now with cuts in school aid, Barbara decided it’s really more appropriate for this money to go to the school system,” said the attorney, Kenneth Nowak. “It’s not like there is a specific time that a light bulb went off — she just decided it’s better for the kids to have this.”

    The deal between Trzeszkowski, the state and the Keansburg school board provides her with $50,000 to help cover her legal fees. She is still entitled to accrued vacation and sick time of more than $184,000 and an annual pension of about $104,000, the governor’s office said in a statement.

    “At a time when far fewer resources are available, spending reductions are demanded, and sacrifice is required of everyone, the ‘golden parachutes’ this case has come to embody are intolerable,” Gov. Chris Christie said.

    Keansburg school board members and administrators could not be reached for comment late today. The New Jersey School Boards Association called the settlement “a happy ending to a very long saga.”

    The agreement comes as Christie’s proposed budget would cut more than $2.2 million in state aid to Keansburg, a low-income district of about 1,800 students. That represents a 6.9 percent cut in aid, compared to some wealthier districts that lost all of their state aid.

    It also comes amid a storm in Trenton over the pensions and benefits of public workers. School employees especially are in the governor’s crosshairs, as he pushes for local teachers’ unions to accept a one-year wage freeze to minimize cuts to student programs.

    A bill Christie signed Monday caps sick-leave payouts at $15,000 for future municipal and school workers and bans them from carrying over unused vacation time for more than one year. Top school administrators were capped at $15,000 in 2007, but some existing contracts already provided for six-figure retirement packages.

    The state could not say today how many of the high-priced agreements are still in place.

    The most controversial aspect of Trzeszkowski’s 2003 contract was not the accumulated leave, but $556,290 in severance pay calculated by multiplying her monthly salary by the 38 years she worked in Keansburg.

    When news of the deal broke in 2008, former Gov. Jon Corzine moved to stop the severance, leading to the court challenge. He also gave executive county superintendents unprecedented powers to review and prohibit “excessive” compensation in local districts

  285. safeashouses says:

    #290 Doom,

    I was talking about the sub 450k range. I don’t follow the higher priced stuff.
    Here’s a 4 bedroom cape in Chatham for 287k. That’s like a 2001 price. The PITI would be under 2k a month to own with 20% down. It seems to be no worse than the capes that were listed at 550k back in Feb 07.

  286. safeashouses says:

    Here’s one in Madison for 320k. Even if it needs a lot of work, 40 to 50k used correctly could make it look like an HGTV model. And it would be a lot cheaper than renting a similar sized house.

  287. Rusty says:

    292. Had she been a banker no one would have said a word. Cause bankers are entitled.

  288. safeashouses says:

    All those listings I posted would be cheaper than renting with a 15% down payment.

  289. Barbara says:

    American became a temp agency after Nafta. The world uses us like a dishrag, no one is a citizen, just a resident and an employee. Plenty of blame to go around, the Obama fixation on these matters is laughable and suspect. This blog is losing credibility by the day and becoming ordinary in its hysteria.

  290. Dink says:


    The Summit house is listed at $2000/month for rent. Would buying really be cheaper in that instance?

  291. Confused in NJ says:

    306.Barbara says:
    March 26, 2010 at 10:31 pm
    American became a temp agency after Nafta. The world uses us like a dishrag, no one is a citizen, just a resident and an employee. Plenty of blame to go around, the Obama fixation on these matters is laughable and suspect. This blog is losing credibility by the day and becoming ordinary in its hysteria

    As I said earlier, every Presidency after DDE has implemented incremental changes (including NAFTA) to get us to where we are. If you remember back, Ross Perot when he garned 9% of the popular vote, warned us about NAFTA. Only 9% listened.

  292. njescapee says:

    dysfunctional nation and blog

  293. safeashouses says:

    #307 dink

    You got me on that one. I missed the 2k a month rental.

    Buying would be about $500 a month more with 15% down. Factor in not paying the 2k commission for the rental and buying would be $350 a month more. Then you get the 8k rebate and the ability to itemize also.

  294. Outofstater says:

    Lone voice in the wilderness here, but I still have hope for my country. The political/social/economic pendulum is always in motion. We’re nearing one end of the arc now and it sucks for a lot of people but things will improve. Everything reverts to the mean, remember? We’ll be okay and you know how I know that? NEW JERSEY! You guys elected a guy who is all elbows and he has struck a chord among the people. If the taxpayers can take on the unions in New Jersey, there is hope for the country.

  295. Barbara says:

    Until the sucubus that is the religious right insists upon the litmus test. In comes the three ring circus: Abortion, gay rights, flag burning/prayer in school. Put a fork in em.

  296. Barbara says:

    311 that is

  297. relo says:

    Christie may be the closest thing to hope in change.

  298. Barbara says:

    relo, agreed. I hope he holds strong.

  299. Rusty says:

    The only answer to organized money is organized people. Bill Moyers.

  300. Qwerty says:

    RE: “U.S. Plans Big Expansion in Effort to Aid Homeowners”

    NY Times readers are furious!


  301. cobbler says:

    relo [314]
    I believe regulations (way exceeding Federal standards and anything based on the common sense) are much more of a problem for businesses in NJ than the state income tax. It’s nice and dandy that Christie stopped promulgation of the new ones, but we have enough of the regs going back to the 80s and 90s to kill any chance to rebuild the productive enterprise.

  302. Shore Guy says:

    “Lone voice in the wilderness here, but I still have hope for my country. ”

    You are not alone, there are others who also have a belief that the nation is capable of repairing itself. That said, enough dawdling. We are in a deep financial hole and little can be done policywise in a host of areas until we stop spending our great-great-grandchildrens’ money to support our current demands for service from government.

    The thing we need to watch out for is an increasing number of people losing faith I our ability to recover. When a sufficient enough number of people start feeling like Clot, we will be in a dangerous place.

    If we continue borrowing 2 out of every 3 dollars (or whatever crazy ratio it is now) the day that huge numbers of people give up on the current system could be sooner than any of us can imagine. FRANKLY, I would prefer that our representatives at the local, state, and national level get their acts together NOW and act in a responsible manner before an emergency strikes. Emergencies tend to create poor legislation — TARP anyone?

  303. Shore Guy says:

    “Police: Drunk Pa. Man Tried To Revive Dead Opossum

    Mar. 27, 2010

    PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. (AP) – Police say they charged a Pennsylvania man with public drunkenness after he was seen trying to resuscitate a long-dead opossum along a highway”

    Dead is bad enough, but LONG-DEAD? Yeesh! It makes my skin crawl.

    This comes from CBS News.

  304. Sean says:

    re: #319 – “ability to recover.”

    Recovering from the credit bubble and returning to a more “normal” state is what has happened. Most don’t realize it yet. Hard work before you know it will be in fashion.

  305. toomuchchange says:

    To be “average” now means to be full of worries for your job, your future and for the next generation.

    Sure there never were guarantees in life, but now there seems to be no security until you’re old enough for Social Security and a pension.

    And even old age will soon become less secure as so private industry workers under 40 will have a pension or much in savings.

    Can there be unity and trust with such high levels of anxiety and unhappiness in this country?

    What does patriotism mean when not only don’t love your fellow Americans, you don’t even like them?

    Not much, it seems to me.

    I love America, I love Americans and I like Americans. If only more people could say that, we’d all be better off.

  306. toomuchchange says:

    322 — boo-boo correction, 3rd paragraph

    And even old age will soon become less secure as so FEW private industry workers under 40 will have a pension or much in savings.

  307. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    “Recovering from the credit bubble and returning to a more “normal” state is what has happened. Most don’t realize it yet. Hard work before you know it will be in fashion.”

    I would normally agree but I encourage you to park outside your neighborhood Walmart and look around. Those 1/4 pounders, formally known as humans, you will be paying for their blown out knees. One may say fine since they paid into the system but in reality they never worked a day in their life. They sat home watching Jerry Springer, stuffing their fat f#cking face with cheeseburgers and onion rings while us slaves foot the bill.

    Rant over. The great culling has begun. It isnt fair but it sure will be entertaining. Maybe those government tit sucking fat mother f#ckers will think twice before they stuff their face with another happy meal.

  308. Sean says:

    Al – hard work does wonders for people. I know you know this.

    Entertaining? Hardly be a capitalist already and make some money on it.

  309. You are making your items very well nonetheless I still am not convinced yet.

  310. Essex says:

    All of you attacking the teachers need to sit back and really see what is happening. The NJEA should be scorned, most of the rank and file teachers don’t have a lot of say (if any) into what the union does. All that aside, you really have to look at our Governor (I voted for him).

    What he and Schundler did was knee cap every suburban household. How you ask? He REFUSES to take on what is really the issue in school funding and that is 31 Abbott School districts. Under Christie’s budget proposal those 31 school districts will suck up 60% of the total aid. We the suburban homeowner are left to fight over the crumbs (if there is any). Just to be clear, state aid comes from the NJ state income tax and 1/2% of the sales tax. The NJ state income tax is constitutionally mandated to go for property tax relief.

    Why do I bring this up? Because Christie has set up a strawman–the teachers and the NJEA (which should be reformed and taken to task–believe me I am against public sector unions). You folks really have to ask yourself–where is all the money going? We pay income tax, we all presumably make purchases in this state. We pay into this relief and for many of us we receive none of it.

    Now some may say the courts decide the funding. They have because we let them. Christie under his proposal wants to amend the state constitution for 2.5% annual cap for property tax increases (Which under his current proposal is pure fantasy). Where is the amendment to distribute state aid on a fair and equitable basis? If he will not challenge Abbott now, he never will.

    59 school districts got their aid completely cut to nothing. Those 59 districts pay in approx $1 billion in the state aid pool. Many of the suburban districts have seen 15% to 100% of their aid cut. If you look at any of the Abbotts they got their aid cut by 3-5%. Where is our money going? Why do we get the shaft? Asbury Park–why does it cost over $35,000 per pupil to educate. They have a little over 2200 kids in the district. WE FUND THEM 83%.

    So I ask you gentle homeowners/taxpayers/voters of NJ, do we really want to continue demonizing educators or tackle the real problem and that is the abominable Abbott vs. Burke funding? Christie has set up a strawman because he refuses to do the heavy lifting (besides get himself out of bed–sorry couldn’t resist).

  311. Joe says:

    Stu and NJGator: What is the legal implication of “RATIOS IN EXCESS OF 100% ARE TO BE CONSIDERED AT 100%” on Chapter 123 Ratios for the current year? If the upper limit is 110%, should we use 100% or 110% to determine if the assessment is in excess?

    Many thanks.

  312. Outofstater says:

    #328 Good point. What would it take to cut funding to the Abbott districts? They are a universal failure as far as I can tell. Would a constitutional amendment do it? And will Christie have a chance to replace some of the members of the state supreme court? Can the Star-Ledger look into this and put it on the front page? The people are beginning to stir; they are starting to pay attention and they see that there really is a chance to change the whole public sector mess. It might just work.

  313. Outofstater says:

    Duh. That was for you, Essex, at 327. Getting more coffee now…

  314. Confused in NJ says:

    327. Abbott issue is chunk change. Teachers in NJ are simply unaffordable, as their salaries & benefits are simply unsustainable. Time to wake up and smell the coffee brewing. I know a number of teachers, who on a personal level laugh at how they are abusing the rest of us. They are not ignorant about their Union and fully support it.

  315. gary says:

    The average cost to educate a student in the public school system in the People’s Republic of New Jersey is $13,850 per year. The tuition at my kid’s school (Catholic) is around $4,000 and the curriculum is about two and a half rungs higher. Now, I’m not a very smart man, but can someone explain this to me?

  316. renter says:


    I am a product of Catholic schools and I will give you a few reasons why.
    1. Catholic schools don’t have to educate special needs kids. 35 years ago my cousin was kicked out, the nuns told my uncle he should go look for work in a factory because he couldn’t be educated. They don’t have to accommodate anyone with any problem, they simply show you the door.
    2. The teachers make a fraction of what public school teachers make.
    3. The best Catholic schools like the all boys St. Ignatious in Cleveland have tuition at the $10,000 level.
    4. Many Catholic schools don’t have any of the “specials” taught by specially trained teacher such as language, gym etc. My gym class consisted of our regular teacher giving us a ball and telling us to play…seriously.

  317. freedy says:

    i guess i should have waited for this new
    Barry O housing plan.

  318. Confused in NJ says:

    I graduated from Saint John The Evangelist Elementary School, in Brooklyn NY. Sister Rose Raphel wanted me to go to Xavarian in Bay Ridge, but we couldn’t afford it, so she had me test for Brooklyn Tech. All eight grade schools were allowed to send three candidates to test for Tech. Two of us were accepted. The other two went to Saint Augustine, as they had the money, I went to Tech. The point is, my less costly Catholic Elementary Education got me accepted into one of NYC’s three Most Competetive High Schools (Stuyvesant, Bronx HS of Science, Brooklyn Tech). Went I went to L.I.U. for my Bachelors Degree, the first year was a repeat of what I had in Tech, which made it quite easy. Teachers Salary in 1950’s America did not correlate with Student Success. My friends who went to Saint Augustine went on to be a Corporate Lawyer and a Big Eight Accounting Firm CPA. Those who tried did, those who didn’t, didn’t, regardless of what you paid their teachers. Back then in NYC they had Tens Schools where those who were disruptive in Public School were sent. So in the old days even Public Schools could remove the disruptive, and Main Streaming for Special Needs didn’t exist. In a sense back then Public & Private schools were on Par.

  319. gary says:

    I went to 12 years of Catholic School and my spouse is a Catholic School teacher. I was sort of being sarcastic and I actually know all the reasons. My point is that we should dismantle the current system and give people the choice of what school they should send their kid. Sort of like we should’ve done with health care…. you know…. like…. open up the States to competition for your business?

  320. Jamal Van Jones says:

    open up the States to competition for your business?

    Do you think business likes competition?? BWAHAHAHAHAHA

    Once you get over the soci@lism fixation and realize the lobbyists and corporations run the govt, you will see the light.

  321. Yikes says:

    Nomad says:
    March 26, 2010 at 9:07 am

    According to this, 43% of us have < $10k in retirement savings.


    that’s terrifying.

  322. gary says:


    Don’t get excited, we have cradle to grave entitlements now.

  323. reinvestor101 says:

    Dammit. Someone took a damn bebe pistol and shot at my garage last night because I don’t want someone forcing a damn doctor’s visit down my throat. That’s a bunch of bullspit and I’m definitely going to invoke my damn second amendment rights. These damn liberals are getting out of damn hand.

    John and Sarah should have been in the white house if it was for that low down dirty scheming socialist who stole the damn election. I DON’T RECOGNIZE AMERICA ANYMORE AND HE’S CHANGED EVERY DAMN THING. That damn socialist is trying to buy the damn vote.

    I don’t want a damn thing from him. I don’t want no stimulus, I don’t want no damn healthcare and I will put up a fight BEFORE I take my share of mortgage assistance.

  324. sas says:

    looks like I won’t be sneaking off to the GWB bus terminal anymore and throwing down my bets with the Dominicans.

    “NYC OTB Says It Will Lay Off 1,300”


  325. gary says:

    I was comparing family health plans in NJ vs. PA and I found a number of POS family coverage plans from Aetna, BCBS, Oxford, etc. The cost of the same plan in NJ was approximately $1,000 per month; in PA, the cost was around $400 per month. Again, this is the same plans being compared with identical deductions. Is there any reason why we couldn’t try this first instead of being force-fed a government plan? Why is the cost in NJ so much more than other States? If PA is that much lower, imagine if we opened it up to other States?

  326. reinvestor101 says:

    Everything in this damn country can be seen as one damn way or the other. It’s either stinking liberialism or rock ribbed conservatism. THERE’S NO DAMN INBETWEEN. YOU’RE EITHER WITH THE DAMN COUNTRY OR YOU’RE AGAINST IT.

    Only a liberal would be commenting on this to promote negativity.

    sas says:
    March 27, 2010 at 11:45 am
    looks like I won’t be sneaking off to the GWB bus terminal anymore and throwing down my bets with the Dominicans.

    “NYC OTB Says It Will Lay Off 1,300″


  327. safeashouses says:

    #342 gary

    This is NJ. You have to pay up for quality.

  328. chicagofinance says:

    Unless OTB fixes itself, the Saratoga season is affected.

    341.sas says:
    March 27, 2010 at 11:45 am
    looks like I won’t be sneaking off to the GWB bus terminal anymore and throwing down my bets with the Dominicans.

    “NYC OTB Says It Will Lay Off 1,300″


  329. Born to Run Bob says:

    “Again, for anyone who has had a taste of yesterday, you know what I’m talking about.”


    Yesterday, 1987, the stock market crashed. It started overnight in Hong Kong. Funny thing, there was contagion. At that time the culprits were program trading and portfolio insurance (just another name for ins derivative contracts) Today’s market; Algo trading and hide a debt OTC derivative swaps.

    Everything that dies someday comes back.

    Also, yesterday, Paterson Plank Joe Pisarcik handed off to Larry Csonka.

  330. Outofstater says:

    The head of Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund is missing after his glider crashed.


  331. Barbara says:

    I think Essex makes excellent points about Abbots. I’m not clear on why Christie isn’t doing or can’t do anything about that. I live in an Abbot, its a joke.

  332. cobbler says:

    gary [342]
    PA doesn’t have community rating, NJ does – that is, if you are young and healthy you are much better off with PA plans; if you are old and sick – time to move back home to NJ.

  333. Jim says:

    349. cobbler,
    Don’t give NJ a bad name. We take care of our own from cradle to grave. Age doesn’t matter, pre-existing conditions don’t matter. Illegal aliens, uh sorry, I mean undocumented workers, doesn’t matter. Want to cash in $150,000 worth of sick days, no problem. The ultimate Welfare State. Time to hit the Scotch. All this makes so much more sense when you are drunk.

  334. Essex says:

    It’s a town for losers….I’m pullin’ outta here ta winnnnnnnnnnnnn…..” -Bruce

  335. renter says:

    I agree. There should be a certain dollar amount per kid and the parent should have the choice to put that money toward any school they want..i.e. the money should follow the kid.
    RE: Mainstreaming
    My daughter is always paired with a struggling student in science lab..math etc. She said “I do all of the work and my partner just writes down what I say.”
    I imagine the teacher thinks the lower skilled student will be brought up by the smarter kid. The result,however, is the struggling kids puts forth no effort and gets nothing out of the lab. My daughter doesn’t know how to teach, she is in 4th grade!

  336. Born to Run Bob says:

    “It’s a town for losers….I’m pullin’ outta here ta winnnnnnnnnnnnn…..” -Bruce”


    “Baby this town rips the bones from your back
    It’s a death trap, it’s a suicide rap
    We gotta get out while we’re young
    ‘Cause tramps like us, baby we were born to run”

  337. renter says:

    Op-Ed Contributor
    Playtime Is Over

    Published: March 26, 2010

    Medford, Mass.

    RECESS is no longer child’s play. Schools around the country, concerned about bullying and arguments over the use of the equipment, are increasingly hiring “recess coaches” to oversee students’ free time. Playworks, a nonprofit training company that has placed coaches at 170 schools from Boston to Los Angeles, is now expanding thanks to an $18 million grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.


    You can’t make this stuff up.

  338. frank says:

    Where’s the recession?? You go to be kidding. Fn joke.

    22 Oak Bridge Avenue, SUMMIT, NJ sold for $755,000.

    19 weeks on the market.
    110-year-old Victorian renovated in 2007; breakfast room, family room w/fireplace, basement rec room, deck, garage, 0.26-acre lot; taxes $14,366; listed at $799,900. Brokers: Lois Schneider; Prudential New Jersey Properties.

  339. bullrun says:

    March 27, 2010
    Meaningless Budget Numbers on Health Care

    How many NYT readers know how large $500 million is as a share of California’s budget? How about $370 million a share of Texas’ budget.

    My guess is that almost no one outside of the people who live in these states (and probably not even many of them) has any clue as to how large these sums are to the state governments. This means that when the NYT tells readers that the health care reform bill will cost the state of California $500 million a year in higher Medicaid costs and Texas $370 million a year, it is giving readers no information whatsoever.

    The article could have instead told readers that the Medicaid expenses will add approximately 0.5 percent to the budgets of both California and Texas. This would have allowed readers to better assess the impact of the bill on state budgets.

    –Dean Baker

  340. Essex says:

    If we could just get over our blinding hatred of unions and public sector workers, we might see that we do in fact have the money we need to rebuild our ramshackle infrastructure, enhance public education and create a new green economy. It’s right there–in the hands of the few. Since 1979 the wealth of the top 1/100th of one percent of all earners increased by 384 percent, while the median earner gained only 12 percent in real wages! (New York Times, ) And yet the effective federal income tax rate for the 400 top taxpayers with the very highest incomes has declined by nearly half over the past two decades–even as their pre-tax incomes have grown five times larger, according to new IRS data. The 400 wealthiest Americans alone have more than $1.3 trillion (not billion) in wealth – just 400 people!

  341. Punch My Ticket says:

    Hey! 358 in mod.

  342. jamil says:

    312 Barbara: “Until the sucubus that is the religious right insists upon the litmus test. In comes the three ring circus: Abortion, gay rights”

    Isn’t this the litmus test of the marxist left?

  343. Stu says:

    Joe 328 – 100% You may never be legally assessed over 100%.

  344. jamil says:

    139 Comrade: “But here is the latest IRS expatriate list”

    Expatriation will have an effect on tax revenue, especially once few billionaire here and there escapes the country, but probably much bigger impact is because of wealthy or high income people not immigrating to the US.

    Two of my co-workers, here on exec visas up to 7 years, specifically refused to get a green card because they were afraid of all the US tax consequences if they leave the country one day as a GC holder or citizen. They also realize that US tax laws are getting more fasc-ists as the national socia-lism and O drooling march on.
    First guy mentioned foreign inheritance (potentially subject for US death tax one day).

    Many potential immigrants (those located abroad or those already here on visas) are still undecided where they want to live and retire, but O is making the choice easy: Anywhere but US.

    Also,increasing number of job positions are global, ie the position can be as well in, say, Europe, or in the US. Many positions that could be in the US are now filled abroad and many US visa holders will relocate to non-US location and taking the job with them. Those two co-workers of mine will take their positions with them.

    When I leave the country one day, I will take my job position (and tax revenue)with me, too. US global tax will certainly impact my decision, and I won’t be the only one.

  345. Essex says:

    The decline of American economic power linked to the current global recession was implicitly acknowledged by the World Bank president Robert Zoellick. “One of the legacies of this crisis may be a recognition of changed economic power relations,” he said in Istanbul ahead of meetings this week of the IMF and World Bank. But it is China’s extraordinary new financial power – along with past anger among oil-producing and oil-consuming nations at America’s power to interfere in the international financial system – which has prompted the latest discussions involving the Gulf states.

  346. Punch My Ticket says:

    Jamil! You’re just another bitter renter (of a passport). I guess I should have expected it of someone so strident re immigrants.

    Of course, if you were a real patriot, you would be watching college hoops instead of aspiring to billionairehood.

  347. Outofstater says:

    Here is a link to the comparative spending of schools by district in NJ:


  348. Essex says:

    Go CATS!

  349. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “Where’s the recession?? You go to be kidding. Fn joke.
    22 Oak Bridge Avenue, SUMMIT, NJ sold for $755,000.”

    Frank that place was bought in 2003 for $550K and was renovated in 2007. We dont know if they put $50k or $300K into it.
    Just because it sold for $755k doesnt mean anything. It could have been worth a million bucks immediately after renovation in 2007.

  350. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Abbotts are mandated to spend as much per pupil as the the most affluent districts in the state.

    One way we can cut abbot funding without going through courts is to bring down the spending in those most affluent districts.

    That means cutting teacher pay especially where they get $90k, fat cat pension, free health benefits and summers off to boot for teaching 6th graders with summers off.

  351. Essex says:

    average pension for teachers in NJ is $30k a year……fatcat?

  352. Confused in NJ says:

    Use this link for your town to find out what each retired teacher is paid:


    The Pensions are amazing.

  353. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    Essex, lets face it.
    Its time for a pay cut.
    And a haircut on your pension.

  354. Outofstater says:

    #370 Could be tricky. I wonder what the law says, if anything, when there is no money to pay the pension and the taxpayers vote down a tax increase. There is no federal backup as there is for private pensions. Where’s Nom when we need him?

  355. Essex says:

    370. I’m 43 and thoughts of a pension are far far away my friend. Besides, 4/5s of my household income is from Beeeeg Phaaaaarma. Thanks!

  356. Final Doom says:

    rusty (316)-

    Bill Moyers is a dick.

  357. Final Doom says:

    shore (320)-

    The drunk was Bob Toll. He thought the possum was the housing market.

    “Police say they charged a Pennsylvania man with public drunkenness after he was seen trying to resuscitate a long-dead opossum along a highway”

  358. Final Doom says:

    change (322)-

    It means have plenty of .223 on hand.

    “What does patriotism mean when not only don’t love your fellow Americans, you don’t even like them?”

  359. Essex says:

    Enlightened Self-Interest….now more than ever.

  360. Final Doom says:

    Faith no more. We are totally bum-fcuked.

    Enjoyed the Dead Bulls tonight, though. They are greatly improved and, I think, worth the price of a ticket for a GTG.

  361. jamil says:

    373 don’t you dare to question Bill Moyers. He is the ultimate moral authority of the Left. It is not that he was some shady White House aide who committed crimes, such as blackmailing gay americans, on behalf of the President. Oh, wait..

  362. Final Doom says:

    jamil, the only person more tedious than Bill Moyers is you.

  363. Mr Hyde says:

    This could wreak havoc with employment if it becomes wide spread.

    4-Day School Weeks Might Be Coming In Illinois.

    Mom and dad are on a 5-day work week, so you either end up with an increased daycare bill or someone has to cut back hours.

    I’m not saying its good or bad, but it is going to cause problem due to the schedule mismatch

  364. Juice Box says:

    Housing bailout unintended consequences.

    The “entrance fee” to getting the debt relief they need is to not pay any longer. The cost will be a tarnished credit. They no longer care.


  365. njescapee says:

    An unmarried couple here just did a strategic default. Both have good cash businesses. The didn’t pay for one year. The one w/o name on papers purchased another house in towm at fire sale price.

  366. chicagofinance says:

    From Up In The Air

    Ryan Bingham: You know why kids love athletes?

    Bob: Because they screw lingerie models.

    Ryan Bingham: No, that’s why we love athletes. Kids love them because they follow their dreams.

  367. chicagofinance says:

    Who gives a crap about all this nonsense, I want clear language about the treatment of the senior unsecured creditors of the corporate debt.

    Ambac Regulator Takes Over to Avoid Asset ‘Scramble’ (Update3)

    March 26 (Bloomberg) — Ambac Financial Group Inc.’s regulator said he seized $35 billion in risky mortgage insurance to keep the company afloat and forestall an “uncontrollable scramble for assets” among policyholders and counterparties.

    “You’re not triggering any defaults,” Wisconsin Insurance Commissioner Sean Dilweg said yesterday in an interview. “All this is, from our perspective, is a timeout so we can create a more orderly runoff.”

    Dilweg is taking over policies on residential mortgage- backed securities and halting some payments to protect municipal bondholders who count on the company’s guarantees. Claims paid now to mortgage investors are threatening to deplete Ambac’s reserves and leave a thinner cushion for municipal-bond clients whose coverage extends decades into the future, Dilweg said.

    Ambac, created in 1971 to insure debt sold by states and municipalities, lost its top credit ratings and 99 percent of its stock-market value after expanding from its main business into guaranteeing bonds backed by riskier assets. The company guarantees $256 billion of the $1.4 trillion in insured municipal issuance, according to Bloomberg data. The muni market totals $2.8 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve.

    “Ambac and its policyholders would be collectively worse off” if policyholders and counterparties seek to exit or modify contracts, Dilweg’s office said in a court filing dated March 24. “The terminations and other actions would bring about the ‘uncontrollable scramble for assets,’” the regulator said, citing a California case upholding that state’s right to curb calls on a troubled insurer’s assets.

    Skipped Payments

    The insurer fell 14 cents, or 21 percent, to 52 cents at 4:15 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading after the company’s debt was downgraded by Moody’s Investors Service. The senior unsecured debt was lowered one level to C, the 11th level below credit grade. The shares also slipped 14 cents yesterday.

    Ambac saved $120 million on skipped payments this month. Once it resumes meeting obligations, Dilweg said he expects the company to hand out about 25 cents cash for every dollar in claims on residential mortgage-backed securities coverage. The balance of claims would be given in surplus notes, which are paid with regulator permission. Payouts to municipal bondholders aren’t scheduled to change, Dilweg said.

    “You have two different constituents, and the capital of the business is getting depleted quickly,” said Rob Haines, an insurance analyst with CreditSights Inc. in New York. “You want to avoid a race to the capital.”

    Ambac said in November that it would face $23.1 billion of payments on credit-default swap contracts if its regulator moved to seize the firm’s main unit. Yesterday, the company said most CDS counterparties had agreed not to seek accelerated payouts amid negotiations.

    Settling Contracts

    The unit may pay $2.6 billion in cash and $2 billion of surplus notes to settle the CDS contracts, which are tied to subprime mortgages and unrelated to the $35 billion of policies on housing securities seized by Dilweg.

    Dilweg’s decision to halt payments on mortgage securities isn’t necessarily a positive for municipal-bond holders, according to Matt Fabian, a senior analyst with Municipal Market Advisors in Westport, Connecticut. “It gives an investor pause — is my bond the next one for which the company doesn’t pay on its policy?” Fabian said.

    Ambac Assurance Corp., the Wisconsin-based unit, will set up a segregated account for insurance contracts linked to credit-default swaps, residential mortgage-backed securities and other structured finance transactions, the parent company said yesterday. Dilweg’s office ordered the handover in a so-called rehabilitation.

    Traffic Cop

    “Once you take them into rehabilitation you have the right to manage the claims,” said Eric Dinallo, the former insurance superintendent for New York, who oversaw Ambac’s bigger competitor MBIA Inc. “You become a traffic cop, you slow some claims down and let others go by.”

    Ambac said that while it doesn’t consider the regulator’s move to constitute a default, it may consider a “prepackaged bankruptcy.”

    An auction will be held to settle a net $3 billion of credit-default swaps protecting against a failure by Ambac’s bond insurance unit to meet its obligations, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association said today on its Web site. The committee of banks and investors governs credit-default swaps in North America.

    Ambac sold the industry’s first insurance policy on municipal debt 39 years ago, for a $650,000 bond of the Greater Juneau Borough Medical Arts Building in Alaska. The business thrived, with a handful of competitors obtaining the top AAA credit rating needed to guarantee debt of state and local governments and their agencies that seldom defaulted.

    Question of Coverage

    Ambac’s main unit was stripped of its top ratings in 2008 and has since seen its grade cut 17 levels to Caa2 by Moody’s Investors Service.

    “At this point, it’s not a question of AAA coverage,” Dilweg told Bloomberg Television. “It’s a question of coverage.”

    To contact the reporters on this story: Andrew Frye in New York at afrye@bloomberg.net; Christine Richard in New York at crichard5@bloomberg.net.

    Last Updated: March 26, 2010 16:44 EDT

  368. Yikes says:

    Al “The Thermostat” Gore says:
    March 26, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    I believe that once our nation is under civil unrest, martial law, and broken into several regions due to the impending total economic collapse; the Russian government and allies might be planing a full scale incursion of America.

    what decade do you see this happening in?

  369. safeashouses says:

    What would John make of this headline?

    “Oral sex link to head cancer”


  370. Confused in NJ says:

    386. “Oral sex link to head cancer”

    Interesting, the HPV related cancer is also common in those who practice anal sex. And I thought Ted Kennedy got his brain cancer from excessive Cell Phone Use, like the Warning in Maine talks about. I still think we should send Pelosi a free cell phone with unlimited minutes.

  371. Final Doom says:

    chi (384)-

    Give GM a call. They should be able to sort it out for you.

    “I want clear language about the treatment of the senior unsecured creditors of the corporate debt.”

  372. Cindy says:


    I couldn’t understand how passage of the health care bill was going to cost AT&T, Deere, Verizon and Caterpillar $1 billion but this article on the tax implications for retiree prescription coverage gives an interesting take on things.

  373. Cindy says:


    8 minutes on NPR radio with Simon Johnson regarding TBTF banks.

  374. peep says:

    Govt subsidies is considered a lost for this companies when they stop getting it.Just like the tax breaks,because they bring job to the community.Everybody just wants to keep sucking our hard earned money.

  375. peep says:

    I am beginning to like a Flat tax with eliminating all tax deduction.

  376. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    It will be interesting how this China/US relationship plays out over the course of the year.

    The past couple months we have the US threatening China with being categorized a currency manipulator.

    China government threatens to dump and/or stop buying US Treasuries and claims they magically had a trade deficit the past quarter (hahaha, and somehow they had a trade surplus the past year when the BDI was barely budging).

    O-man passes healthcare reform and Bergabe and his minions say Federal Funds Rate note likely to budge for the “foreseeable future”.

    All of a sudden a South Korean ship explodes near North Korean waters. At first it was called a torpedo attack, now it’s “a mystery”:)

    I am not sure if this is an environment I’d want to be invested in the stock market;)

  377. Outofstater says:

    Okay, so the managing director of Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund goes down in a glider crash on a lake in Morocco yesterday. The pilot was rescued after half an hour and they still can’t find the other guy? And there are no updates since yesterday? And a glider is a sailplane, right? How often do those things crash? Seems a little strange to me. Maybe the guy wasn’t all that important after all. I guess I’m missing something.

  378. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    “managing director of Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund goes down in a glider crash on a lake in Morocco’

    He must have stopped buying US Treasuries ;)

  379. chicagofinance says:


    John McClane: So that’s is what this is about, Hans? A fckking robbery?

    Hans Gruber: Put down the gun.

    John McClane: Why’d you have to nuke the whole building, Hans?

    Hans Gruber: Well, when you steal $600, you can just disappear. When you steal 600 million, they will find you, unless they think you’re already dead.

  380. jamil says:

    Go Parasites!

    Wall Street Journal:

    “The Government Pay Boom
    America’s most privileged class are public union workers.”

    It turns out there really is growing inequality in America. It’s the 45% premium in pay and benefits that government workers receive over the poor saps who create wealth in the private economy. And the gap is growing. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), from 1998 to 2008 public employee compensation grew by 28.6%, compared with 19.3% for private workers. In the recession year of 2009, with almost no inflation and record budget deficits, more than half the states awarded pay raises to their employees. Even as deficits in state capitals widen and are forcing cuts in services, few politicians are willing to eliminate these pay inequities.”

    There’s more: “What if government workers earned the average of what private workers earn? States and localities would save $339 billion a year from their more than $2.1 trillion budgets. These savings are larger than the combined estimated deficits for 2010 and 2011 of every state in America. In a separate survey, the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis compares the compensation of public versus private workers in each of the 50 states. Perhaps not coincidentally, the pay gap is widest in states that have the biggest budget deficits, such as New Jersey, Nevada and Hawaii. Of the 40 states that have a budget deficit so far this year, 28 would have a balanced budget were it not for the windfall to government workers.”


  381. Outofstater says:

    #397 So they’ll find a body in the man-made lake and call it the managing director. Sloppy work and poor planning. Much better to have done it over open water with currents.

  382. Taxed says:

    March 26 (Bloomberg) — Liberty Helicopters Inc. is offering to fly weary commuters from New Jersey to Manhattan for about $200 a day, saving them 14 hours in traffic a week and signaling that Wall Street may have seen the worst of the recession.

    As many as six people at a time will travel above the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island and the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge during the trip of about 20 miles (32 kilometers) from Port Monmouth, New Jersey, to landing pads at West 30th Street and Pier 6 near Wall Street. Weekend service starts tonight and weekday runs begin next month.

  383. Taxed says:

    WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — As the weather clears and spring arrives, the first true ray of sunshine since 2007 is expected to burst forth in the jobs market.

    What’s far less certain is whether sunnier days lie ahead for the millions of Americans who cannot find work amid the worst recession in at least three decades.

    On Friday, the U.S. is expected to show growth of 200,000 nonfarm jobs when the government reports the monthly data for March. Some economists are even predicting gains of up to 250,000. Read our complete economic calendar and consensus forecast.

    News Hub: Health Costs for Companies
    The health reform bill eliminated a subsidy for companies that operated as a double deduction. Companies such as John Deere and Caterpillar will face new costs up to $150 million, Ellen Schultz reports.

    If the forecasts prove accurate, it would be the largest expansion since November 2007 and only the second advance in the past 27 months.

    While any improvement is welcome, the headline number won’t tell the full story. For one thing, the data will get a boost from hiring for the U.S. Census. Nicer weather will also help.

    “Stripping out Census and weather effects, we would expect a small, but still positive, change in underlying employment, which would be good news – just not as good as the headline 200,000 figure would suggest,” IHS Global Insight said.

  384. Taxed says:

    Budget fight looms over tax on rich

    Critics assail Christie’s plan not to renew surcharge on incomes of $400,000 or more.

    By Jonathan Tamari
    Inquirer Trenton Bureau

    Gov. Christie has said his budget calls for shared sacrifice, but liberal critics and some Democrats say one group is getting off easy: the rich.

    Christie, who came to office promising to rein in New Jersey’s free-spending ways, has refused to renew an income-tax surcharge on people earning $400,000 and more, saying residents are already overtaxed.

    At the same time, his critics say a rental-assistance program for the poor is being cut, the developmentally disabled are being asked to pay more for their care, NJ Transit fares are rising by 25 percent, and the state is trimming its Earned Income Tax Credit, effectively handing the working poor a $45 million tax increase.

    Democrats last week said they would not let that situation stand.

    “Everyone’s going to pay more, and the only people that got a break are the higher-income people,” Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D., Gloucester) said at a meeting Thursday with The Inquirer editorial board.

  385. Barbara says:

    red meat. stupid politics on Christie’s part. Yeah, I voted for him.

  386. Taxed says:

    Short sales drive down home prices more than foreclosure.


  387. Joe says:

    Thanks Stu.

    360 Stu says:

    Joe 328 – 100% You may never be legally assessed over 100%.

  388. cooper says:

    my buddy just put in an offer on a house in bergen co. that was %10 off list. house has been on the market since end of feb no price changes… agent told him she didnt think it was high enough to get a counter offer from the owner. and I thought he should have taken off %20!

  389. Confused in NJ says:

    They keep upping the rain amount, and duration, again. National Weather Service calling for 5″-6″ in parts of NJ, from Sunday night until Tuesday night. Bah Humbug. Lesser amounts are 3″-4″ in western areas. Wht happened to our normal 1″, and what’s with these multiple low pressure areas, that turn a 1 day storm, into a 2-3 dayer.

  390. Yikes says:

    “I don’t believe in anything, I’m just here for the violence.”

    at any rate, I HOPE all the doom and goomers are wrong, and the country’s economic outlook rebounds in the next few years.

    guys like “John” and Ric Edelman are bullish … is anyone else?

  391. cobbler says:

    he-he-he [394]
    China did get itself a small trade deficit recently because they buy up and hoard all sort of commodities (e.g. massive gold purchases from IMF by their central bank contributed to the deficit). Not sustainable, unless they want to have a commodity bubble all for themselves.

  392. Essex says:

    Hey jamil…..who is bleeding the nation dry…”And yet the effective federal income tax rate for the 400 top taxpayers with the very highest incomes has declined by nearly half over the past two decades–even as their pre-tax incomes have grown five times larger, according to new IRS data. The 400 wealthiest Americans alone have more than $1.3 TRILLION in wealth – just 400 people!”

  393. Essex says:

    Since 1979 the wealth of the top 1/100th of one percent of all earners increased by 384 percent, while the median earner gained only 12 percent in real wages!

  394. cobbler says:

    Essex [411]
    Increasing wealth gap is the expected result of globalization. There is nothing intrinsically superior in the people assuming themselves to be the U.S. middle class if you compare them with equally or more hardworking and educated peers in say Taiwan or Singapore, or with less educated but harder working Chinese and Indians. The only two things that raised our median standard of living were forced redistribution via the tax system, and tariff barriers. Now the tax rates on the high incomes are much lower, and tariffs are mostly gone – so the overall GDP grows but all the growth and then some goes to the top.

  395. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    I’d say the two biggest groups of overpaid people are a) CEO’s and b)public union employees.

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  397. cobbler says:

    The average pay of the union employees is OK; the problem is that the average productivity is much lower than in the private industry – because a very large part of the employees are extremely bad. If we had the same average pay, but 70% fewer people, nobody’d have an issue…

  398. gary says:

    WASHINGTON – Fed up with waiting, President Barack Obama announced Saturday he would bypass a vacationing Senate and name 15 people to key administration jobs, wielding for the first time the blunt political tool known as the recess appointment.

    It really doesn’t matter what our political and social ideology is because “we the people” don’t have a stitch of influence or power any longer. From here on, I’m just calling the play by play but make no mistake about it, you’re gonna hear a lot of “for the first time” and “unprecented in American history/politics” within the next couple of years. And I always thought Constitutional Amendments were near impossible but I’m not sure anymore.

  399. gary says:

    unprecented = unprecedented

  400. Barbara says:

    gary, plenty of amendments long over due. Its not a holy relic, the founding fathers knew this, hence amendments.

  401. gary says:


    It’s the whole approach and attitude. There’s an arrogance and smugness that really irks me. I just don’t like the Eff U attitude. There is no dignity or respect at all and quite honestly, I disagree almost entirely with the direction we’re heading.

  402. chicagofinance says:

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    March 28, 2010 at 1:16 pm
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  403. Barbara says:

    is this the same direction was under GWB or is this a new direction? His appointments are long over due and they were being made into political hay, regardless of how minor,keeping the 24 hr news pundits in business. I for one am tired of it. I think he’s played nice long enough.

  404. borat obama says:


  405. Taxed says:

    gary says:
    March 28, 2010 at 3:52 pm
    WASHINGTON – Fed up with waiting, President Barack Obama announced Saturday he would bypass a vacationing Senate and name 15 people to key administration jobs, wielding for the first time the blunt political tool known as the recess appointment.

    Bush did this 171 times. It’s a way of getting your appointments up and running when the partisan crap holds it up.

  406. Jamal van Jones says:

    From here on, I’m just calling the play by play but make no mistake about it, you’re gonna hear a lot of “for the first time”

    Though Bill Clinton did the same thing over 100 times, and George Bush did it closer to 200 times, President Obama’s recent appointments of 15 positions, including labor-friendly Craig Becker to The National Labor Relations Board, while the congress is in recess seems like very bad timing.


    The horse is willfully ignorant about the water surrounding him.

  407. yo'me says:

    We are the men that listen to no one.
    Yet we speak of our wisdom.
    We are pawns of the game.

  408. yo'me says:

    March 28, 2010
    Did the Federal Government Make Money Bailing Out Citigroup

    The Washington Post is anxious to tell its readers that the government made a profit on its bailout of Citigroup. This claim gives a whole new meaning to the notion of “profit.” The government gave enormous amounts of money to Citigroup through various direct and indirect channels. It is only getting a portion of this money back in its “profits,” the rest is going to Citigroup’s shareholders (e.g. Robert Rubin) and its millionaire executives who are highly skilled at getting the government to hand them money.

    First, it is worth noting how the government got the shares of common stock which it is now selling for a profit. On November 23, 2008, the government bought $20 billion in preferred shares in Citigroup. It also received another $7 billion in preferred shares in exchange for guarantees on $300 billion in bad assets. At the time, the combined value of the investment in preferred shares and the guarantee on bad assets exceeded the full market value of Citigroup stock on November 21st, the last trading day prior to the deal. In other words, for the same financial commitment that the government made on that day, it could have owned Citigroup outright.

    The government subsequently held onto to its preferred shares until Citigroup’s stock had nearly tripled in value. In September of last year it traded its preferred shares for common shares that were priced at a level that only give the government a 27 percent stake in Citigroup. These shares have have now risen enough to give the government an $8 billion profit on its investment. While the Post tells readers that:

    “The windfall expected from the stock sale would amount to a validation of the rescue plan adopted by government officials during the height of the financial panic, when the banking system neared the brink of collapse. A year ago, Citigroup’s stock hovered around a dollar a share, and the bank’s future seemed in doubt. On Friday, the stock closed at $4.31.”

    The logic of the Post’s assertion that the profit on Citigroup stock validated the bailout is not clear. By making capital available to Citigroup at below market rates, the government effectively subsidized the income of Citigroup’s shareholders. It also allowed its top executives to make millions of dollars because they were smart enough to be able to get taxpayers to subsidize the bank. The current market value of Citigroup is $123 billion, with only $33 billion belonging to the government. This means that the government has effectively given $90 billion (@ 25 million kid-years of health care provided through the State Children’s Health Insurance Program or SCHIP) to Citigroup’s shareholders and billions more to its executives by not demanding a market price for its support.

    It is also worth noting that the government has supported Citigroup through other mechanisms. The Fed created various special lending facilities that allowed Citigroup to borrow money from the government at extremely low interest rates. Since one of the main uses of this money was buying government bonds, Citigroup was essentially getting free money from the government. If it borrowed $200 billion at near zero interest and lent it back to the government by buying 10-year Treasury bonds at 3.7 percent interest, then the government was effectively handing Citigroup $7.4 billion a year for nothing. This money is not deducted from the Post’s estimate of the government’s “profit” on its dealings with Citigroup. (The Fed refuses to tell the public how much money it lent to Citigroup and other banks at below market rates.)

    It is possible that the losses at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as the Federal Housing Authority (FHA), may also have helped to subsidize Citigroup’s profits. Fannie and Freddie lose money when they pay too much to banks to buy mortgages. It is likely that Citigroup was one of the banks that Fannie and Freddie overpaid for mortgages. Similarly, the FHA loses money when it guarantees mortgages without charging a high enough insurance fee. It is likely that many of the mortgages that the FHA guaranteed, which went bad, were issued by Citigroup.

    It is also worth noting that government policy has helped to boost Citigroup’s profitability in other ways. Citigroup is at the top of the list of “too big to fail” institutions. This has allowed it to continue to borrow money from the private investors at interest rates that are far below the rates it would have to pay if it did not rely on a guarantee of support from the nanny state.

    Also, the government’s efforts to support the economy more generally have proven a boon to Citigroup. Specifically, by pushing down interest rates it has enormously raised the value of the loans on Citigroup’s books. The value of long-term loans rises substantially when interest rates fall. If the Fed’s program of buying mortgage-backed securities lowered the interest rate on 30-year mortgages from 5.5 percent to 5.0 percent, then this would raise the value of Citigroup’s outstanding 30-year mortgages by more than 7 percent. If Citi had $500 billion invested in mortgages or related assets, then the action by the Fed would have effectively given Citi $35 billion.

    If the Fed subsequently resells the $1.25 trillion in mortgage-backed securities it purchased in order to push down mortgage interest rates in an environment in which interest rates have risen, then it will lose money on these purchases. If it sells the mortgage-backed securities when interest rates are 6 percent, then it will lose close to 15 percent, or more than $180 billion on its purchases of these mortgages.

    In telling readers that the profit on Citi stock “would amount to a validation of the rescue plan adopted by government officials during the height of the financial panic” the Post is ignoring all the other costs born by the government in allowing Citigroup to be restored to viability. It is also ignoring the enormous handout of taxpayer dollars to some of the richest people in the country. This is not good reporting.

    –Dean Baker

  409. renter says:

    We placed a bid on a home that was accepted contingent on bank approval. We went into attorney review and our lawyer sent a revised contract to the buyer’s lawyer on the 20th of Feb. Seller’s lawyer has never responded…seller is on vacation…seller doesn’t answer calls…seller’s lawyer is on vaction.
    I drove past the house today and the yard looks like it has been landscaped and there is no for sale sign up.

  410. Barbara says:

    been there, he’s holding out on attorney review to a) get a better price or b) get you to bid up.

    But he doesn;t want to let you go…..you need to pull your offer. You arent in attorney review until the latest contract to approved by both parties.

  411. Barbara says:

    to = is

  412. renter says:


    Why would they have accepted the offer at all? I guess I’m slow.

  413. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “the problem is that the average productivity is much lower than in the private industry – because a very large part of the employees are extremely bad.”

    Cobbler. got to slightly disagree with this idea. Although a union employee is a union employee, and that is indefensible, the nature of public work is extremely different than chasing profit so you’ve got to judge the workers on different standards/criteria. First, you are not going to get ‘customer service’ from them – but thats because they aren’t selling anything – and they dont work for you just beacuse you pay taxes (although most of us like to think that).

    Also, consider that management decisions are made on a political basis and administered top down. So most public workers are given little autonomy and made to work in a system that makes very little business sense to them or anyone else.

    Furthermore the public sector is stuck with jobs that the private sector could not make profitable in the first place. So if you brought in mckinsey, their advice would prob be to get out of the business because its a black hole.

    There are infact many productive public sector employees who care and work hard but govt is not structured in a way to maximize performance or to be efficient or to reward those who outperform. Its structured for stability, effectiveness and predictibility and many times it moves slow on purpose for quality control and checks and balances, etc. From that perspective, beaurocracies are highly effective structures and many union workers are model employees.

    im not ignoring the fact that they need to reduce their rich compansation packages. They need to pay (something) for thei gold standard health care insurance. Pensions need a hair cut and pay-in amounts need to be increased. But the great thing about pension math is the power of compounding, so a 10% change in the numbers today equals tens of billions of dollars 10-20-30 years out. They just need the political will (christie) to make this happen. I think a small haircut across the board is innevitable.

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  415. Final Doom says:

    Faith no more. Doom is imminent. All the rest is white noise.

  416. Final Doom says:

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  417. Final Doom says:

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  418. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    It’s Official – America Now Enforces Capital Controls

    “Provision requires that foreign banks not only withhold 30% of all outgoing capital flows (likely remitting the collection promptly back to the US Treasury) but also disclose the full details of non-exempt account-holders to the US and the IRS. And should this provision be deemed illegal by a given foreign nation’s domestic laws (think Switzerland), well the foreign financial institution is required to close the account. It’s the law. If you thought you could move your capital to the non-sequestration safety of non-US financial institutions, sorry you lose – the law now says so. Capital Controls are now here and are now fully enforced by the law.”

    You all are trapped in this Communist hell hole. There is no escape. Fire up the FEMA trains and save the fat wristed shackles for the tit suckers.

  419. njescapee says:

    Al, I’ll bet this arrangement doesn’t affect George Soros and his ilk

  420. house hunter says:

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  421. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    “This is just the beginning of the rise of the United States in its 500 year reign as the only major power.”

    This guy is the opposite of gerald calabrese.

    Russia will eventually collapse and China is doomed to be a 2nd/3rd rate power.

    One of our biggest advantages is our ability to draw immigrants and integrate them into our culture.

    USA/NASA will secure the next generation of space based solar power energy and sell to the world.

    The Next 100 Years: George Friedman


  422. Essex says:

    431. McKinsey couldn’t find their asshole with both hands. Let’s demystify things here a bit. OK?

  423. veto that - Lawrence Yun says:

    440 – lets demystifying what you are alluding to.

  424. cobbler says:

    veto [431]
    I am not talking profitability; certainly, it shouldn’t and can’t be a goal of the public sector; I am talking being productive – like, for a teacher (actually, teachers are a majority of the public employee) actually making the students learn rather than sitting in front of them reading from the book; for a municipal inspector – closing the permits w/o nitpicking about some kitchen renovation to be able to come for another visit – maybe the town doesn’t need that many inspectors; for a DEP official – actually understanding the regulations he is trying to enforce, so that papers don’t have to be refiled 5 times; for a public housing officer – maybe these 250 refrigerators in the apartments are good for another 5 or 10 years, so I could save 100K of taxpayers money and not buy the new ones… There is hardly a job where there are good and bad employees…

  425. cobbler says:

    I meant, where there are NO good and bad employees…

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