Pay up, suckers.

From the NYT:

N.J. Voters Asked to Pay More for Less at Schools

School budget talks have become so contentious in this township that 700 people recently packed a school board meeting — and 100 of them stayed more than nine hours, until 4 a.m.

At stake is Edison’s $204.8 million school budget for next year, which calls for increasing the local property tax levy by 8.6 percent. Even with such an increase — which required a waiver to the state’s 4 percent cap — Edison plans to lay off 92 teachers, cancel summer school, cut kindergarten to a half day and eliminate middle school athletic teams.

But first voters have to approve the budget, which is on the ballot Tuesday, as are budgets in most of New Jersey’s 600 school districts. Many school officials are expecting the toughest elections in years, as districts seek not only to raise property taxes but also to slash popular programs to offset the unusually large reductions in school aid proposed by Gov. Christopher J. Christie, who is trying to close an $11 billion state deficit.

The increases have angered taxpayers like Denise Bernacki, a retired project manager for a laboratory who has watched her property taxes rise to more than $10,000 a year during her 22 years in Edison. “We’re ready to move out of the state,” said Ms. Bernacki, a Republican who voted for Governor Christie. “I’ve had enough, and I think a lot of people feel that way.”

Teaneck, with 4,000 students and a $94.9 million budget, is proposing an increase of 10.2 percent to the tax levy, which works out, on average, to an extra $475 a year per homeowner. The district also plans to reduce its staff by 21 positions, buy fewer textbooks and supplies and postpone replacement of the roof at Teaneck High School.

The Randolph district, with 5,300 students, is calling for a 6.5 percent tax levy increase in an $81 million school budget. Owen M. Snyder, the superintendent, said that as state aid has decreased, homeowners have been forced to shoulder a larger share of the school budget because, in a township with few businesses, there is simply no one else to do it.

“What are you going to do, the kids need school,” said Mr. Szalay, 72, who plans to cut back on dinners out to help cover the tax increase. “And the schools are crowded and they need a lot of things and they don’t get them.”

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600 Responses to Pay up, suckers.

  1. willwork4beer says:


  2. willwork4beer says:

    “Teaneck, with 4,000 students and a $94.9 million budget,”

    $23,725 per pupil? Wow…

  3. grim says:

    From the Daily Record:

    Parsippany budget would hike taxes 8.7 percent

    Mayor Jamie Barberio’s proposed budget for 2010 would raise municipal taxes by 8.7 percent, an increase he blamed on reductions in state aid and other factors beyond the town’s direct control.

    Under the proposal, homes assessed at the town average of $306,343 would receive a $1,723 municipal tax bill, up $141 from 2009.

    Separately, that homeowner would receive a $4,808 school tax bill, up $219, under the proposed K-12 district budget to be decided by voters Tuesday.

  4. freedy says:

    i think most residents of the state”just don’t get it”

    speak to them , it’s for the children.

    they don’t understand how much money is robbed from the pockets .

  5. grim says:

    From CNBC:

    Fannie Mae Pushing Home Ownership—But Is That Right?

    Some argue that a constant political obsession with the “ownership society” is what pushed this nation into the current housing disaster. Going back decades, presidents have pushed it and Congress, in turn, has helped open the financial doors to it.

    The question now, as we scrape together what’s left of our economic faith and investing gumption, is: Should we continue to push borderline borrowers into home ownership?

    The answer, at Fannie Mae at least, appears to be yes. The mortgage giant is offering troubled borrowers who opt to do short sales (sell their homes for less than the value of the mortgage) or deeds in lieu of foreclosure (essentially just hand the keys over to the bank) the chance to get back into home ownership more quickly. Two years sooner, in fact.

    Originally, if you did either of the above methods to get out of a home/mortgage you couldn’t afford, Fannie Mae would not clear you to get a new loan to buy another home for 4 years.

    According to a notice sent to Fannie’s lenders/servicers, they are shrinking that waiting period by two years “to support overall market stability and reinforce the importance of borrowers working with their servicers when they have difficulty repaying their debt.” In order to qualify for the new loan, though, the borrower must put 20 percent down.

    The idea is to get former home owners back on their feet again and back into the business of buying homes. Don’t get me wrong, I understand the theory behind it. With inventories rising again and more and more borrowers not qualifying for various loan modification programs or refinances, Fannie Mae (i.e. the government) is looking to get Americans out of homes they can’t afford and into homes they can.

  6. grim says:

    From HousingWire:

    First-Time Buyers Take Larger Share of Home Sales in March

    First-time homebuyers made up a record high share of sales in March, according to the latest Campbell Surveys poll of more than 1,500 real estate agents nationwide.

    Of all home purchases in the month, first-time homebuyers accounted for 48.2%. The new monthly record eclipsed the previous peak of 46.9% last October when the expected November expiration of the original homebuyer tax credit drove up the share of first-time homebuyers. The March uptick comes ahead of the extended tax credit deadline.

    The surge in first-time homebuyer activity in March came at the same time the volume of distressed properties in the housing market climbed to more than 50%, according to the survey.

    The latest survey found that short sales accounted for 18.6% of the housing market in March.

    “None of the survey results take into account the new Home Affordable Foreclosures Alternative (HAFA) program for short sales,” Popik said. “This government program took effect in early April, so we expect short sales to account for an even greater proportion of the real estate market in coming months.”

  7. Final Doom says:

    Remember to vote “no” today.

    It’s not about the kids. It’s about the NJEA Ponzi and the slow-motion buttr@pe of NJ families. The state is tapped out, and even a “modest” increase is unacceptable.

  8. grim says:

    Remember to vote “no” today.


  9. Final Doom says:

    I love my district’s plea that taxes will “only” go up by some incremental amount.

    This is UNACCEPTABLE. And, unlike many unfortunate kids these days, I was fortunate enough to have been taught about the effects of compounding. Today’s “little” bump up- repeated over years- is why we have the worst property taxes in the US, our state is insolvent, businesses won’t come here and all our seniors look to move away.

    I will not vote for a school budget until it reflects LOWER taxes. Nothing else is acceptable.

    Out with the teat-suckers!!!!

  10. willwork4beer says:


    460 administrators and teachers. 147 paid over 100K for 2008-2009 school year (32%).

    Source: APP Data Universe

  11. Mr Hyde says:

    time to move to europe?

    Brussels decrees holidays are a human right.

    AN overseas holiday used to be thought of as a reward for a year’s hard work. Now Brussels has declared that tourism is a human right and pensioners, youths and those too poor to afford it should have their travel subsidised by the taxpayer.

  12. Final Doom says:

    I will NOT pay for 9th grade sports teams, middle school sports and pay raises of ANY type for administrators…even if they are specified by contracts.

    Let the district declare BK, void the contracts and tell these lard-asses to pound salt.

    Most lower-level school sports teams are afternoon babysitting. If you can’t run a mile in, say, eight minutes, you have no business being on a team of any type. Go home and smoke cigarettes. Learn how to drink during the day. It’s gonna happen anyway.

  13. Final Doom says:

    Hyde (11)-

    Don’t laugh. That crazy shit is really what TPTB want happening here, too.

    The further this Admin. goes, the more I believe they just want to turn us into Europe. With bad soccer.

  14. Final Doom says:

    Public schools are the vehicle TPTB use to soften us up, impoverish us and indoctrinate us incrementally into collectivism.

  15. Final Doom says:

    How many vice-principals in NJ were hired as the result of their district’s losing a lawsuit brought by a parent?

  16. Commanderbobnj says:

    willwork4beer says:
    April 20, 2010 at 6:19 am
    “Teaneck, with 4,000 students and a $94.9 million budget,”

    $23,725 per pupil? Wow…

    ———–Commanderbob sez:
    The most interesting part is that a large percent of the population in Teaneck (North-west section and growing beyond into Bergenfield..) is Jewish with their own religious schools. If they decided to instead -(they wouldn’t, of course..)- go to the government/NJEA schools, you could well imagine what that would mean for the school taxes in Teaneck !!
    Some of them are trying to get elected to the School Board; After all, they are paying through their property taxes for ALL the other people’s children, PLUS the costs to enroll their own in their chosen religious private schools…I Hope they are elected !

    VOTE NO !——To send the ‘message’ to the bullies of the NJEA !!

    There is NO MORE money available from the citizens for your 3-to-4 percent wage increases…Apparently, Teacher/NJEA think that they are immune from economic reality !!


  17. Essex says:

    14… An educated population is the cornerstone of democracy. This nation’s well-being depends on the decisions of its educated, informed citizens.

  18. Essex says:

    10. An educated population is the cornerstone of democracy. This nation’s well-being depends on the decisions of its educated, informed citizens.

    9. Education reduces costs to taxpayers. For every dollar spent to keep a child in school, the future costs of welfare, prison, and intervention services are reduced. It can cost less to educate a child now than to support a teenage parent or a repeat offender in the future. Education monies help to secure the future of all citizens.

    8. Public schools are the only schools that must meet the needs of all students. They do not turn children or families away. Public schools serve children with physical, emotional, and mental disabilities, those who are extremely gifted and those who are learning challenged, right along with children without special needs.

    7. Public schools foster interactions and understanding among people of different ethnic, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds.

    6. “Education is the best provision for old age”– Aristotle. The future support of our aging population depends on strong public schools. In 1954, there were 17 workers to pay the Social Security cost for each retiree. By 1995, there will be only three for each retiree. It is likely that the productivity of these three workers per retiree will depend on the strength of our public school systems.

    5. More than 95 percent of our future jobs will require at least a high school education. There is no question about the need for an educated work force.

    4. The nation pays a high price for poorly educated workers. When retraining and remediation are needed to prepare a worker to do even simple tasks, the cost is paid by both employers and consumers. This process raises the price of American products and makes it more difficult for this nation to compete in the world marketplace.

    3. The cost of dropouts affects us all. This nation loses more than $240 billion per year in earnings and taxes that dropouts would have generated over their lifetimes. Well-supported public schools can engage all students in learning and graduate productive and competent citizens.

    2. Children are our nation’s future. Their development affects all of us. Good education is not cheap, but ignorance costs far more.

    1. Public education is a worthy investment for public funds. We can invest now, or we can pay later.

    — from the Illinois Coalition for Public Education, June 1994.

  19. Final Doom says:

    The best lessons one can learn are those that money can’t buy.


  20. Final Doom says:

    What happens in public schools is not education.

  21. Confused in NJ says:

    18. We can have all that, but outsource the teaching to China & India, so it’s affordable.

  22. Final Doom says:

    Training? Check. Indoctrination? Check.

    A real education is not for the little people.

  23. Nomad says:

    Is it time to start privatizing schools? I wonder if a PE firm bought a school system – physical assets: buildings, books, computers etc, did some type of sale / leaseback of the buildings and ran them without unions how that would workout? The idea of a privatizing schools would certainly evoke some interesting church / state debates among other things. Could require these entities to pool some money to provide for kids with special needs and centralize these types of programs which may improve the quality of service provided while lowering costs.

    I look at teachers wages and they are the only ones who have rising incomes these days.

  24. Nomad says:

    work out?

  25. Final Doom says:

    American finance is a giant fraud.

    “One of the take home lessons from the Lehman Repo 105 scam is that Primary Dealers will do everything in their power to dispose of assets in any way possible at end of quarter time in order to make their leverage ratios palatable to investors and rating agencies. A week ago, taking a hint from the WSJ, we observed how for the week ended March 31, total Primary Dealer assets plunged by $34 billion in just one week: from March 24 to March 31. For this EOQ asset window dressing hypothesis to be confirmed, we needed to see a corresponding spike in asset in the week immediately following March 31. Sure enough, using Treasury data of Primary Dealer holdings, we observe precisely that, and then some. In the week ended April 7, total Primary Dealer assets exploded by $53 billion to the highest level seen in 2010, or $300 billion, a stunning 21% increase in total assets in just one week! This is also the highest total level of PD asset holdings since June 10, 2009. What do primary dealers do with these assets? They either repo them out back to the Fed directly, or via the Tri-Party Repo System, or via some other off balance sheet conduit, using the cash proceeds to go elbow deep in risky assets and purchase every stock imaginable (having given the impression the week before that they are all prudent fiduciaries who don’t “gamble” with other people’s money). If you were wondering where the surge in buying interest came from in the first few days of April, wonder no more. Furthermore, as PDs would be careful about negative carry on the repo rates, it would be expected that the one security they would buy the most of, would be T-Bills with their next to nothing interest rates… Which is exactly what happened: PD T-Bill holdings surged from a mere $12.6 billion at March 31 to $44.4 billion on April 7. PDs no longer need Repo 105 – they do all their EOQ window dressing directly in the open market.”

  26. scribe says:

    hyde, #11

    at first, I thought it must be a story in The Onion.

  27. Essex says:

    I like O’s new mocking tone. Cause the GOP is completely laughable. Let em’ in and watch em really f*ck things up. Kind of like the houseguest from Hell.

  28. willwork4beer says:

    #23 Nomad

    Go to the APP Data Universe website and check out the salaries for teachers in Teaneck. Note how many of the 100K+ group are teachers of Art, Music or Phys. Ed.

    I can understand paying high salaries to math and science teachers, but 100K gym teachers? This is what the NJEA has done to our schools.

  29. Essex says:

    28. $100k is like minimum wage for anyone here in NJ. Even at $100k it would be impossible for anyone to live in Teaneck.

  30. grim says:

    18 – Essex

    I don’t quite understand.

    Are those excuses or justifications for being exempt from budgetary responsibility?

    Are you saying that in order to accomplish those goals you must be given not only a blank check, buy also an exception from even being questioned about it?

  31. grim says:

    I hear NJEA members are showing their true colors on Facebook.

  32. Final Doom says:

    “The modern concept of “human rights” has become code for “wealth transfer”. Since 1948 bureaucrats from the UN to the EU have seen fit to accord humanity rights to standards of living, social security, free elementary education, leisure time, and now EasyJet junkets to Spain.

    But let’s not be fooled: this latest “human right” is nothing more a thinly disguised subsidy for the European tourism industry. Which makes the use of the term even more pathetic, as it has nothing to do with rights, and everything to do with filling empty Alpine resorts in the off-season.

    Let’s just hope our politicians on this side of the pond don’t decide to grant us the same rights, to promote Arctic ecotours or shore up festivals in rural Quebec. But then, we’re talking about the government who gave us the home renovation tax credit – can the tourism tax credit be far behind? I can hear Air Canada starting its lobbying engines now…”

  33. Final Doom says:

    grim (30)-

    It’s the substitution of fearmongering and appeals to emotion for rational public debate and discussion.

    The people doing the brainwashing are brainwashed themselves. One more generation of this, and we’ll be rendered stupid forever.

  34. frank says:

    SRS tippled in price, wow, CRE must be on fire.

  35. renter says:


    The argument against any type of voucher program is that you will skim the cream and leave a concentration of the poorest & most disadvantaged in the worst schools. I don’t see how this is much different then the reality today.

  36. willwork4beer says:

    #29 Essex

    Isn’t Teaneck where the Mortgage Cake lady lives? I bet she manages to get by on less than 100K. Think about how much cheaper she could live if she rented an apartment.

  37. Essex says:

    30. It is what it is.

  38. Essex says:

    36. Oh yeah your right.

  39. Essex says:

    Caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaake! Listen people if you do not know I sometimes take a side just to hear the arguments. I made it through public school in 5 states. It is what it is. The documents I acquired there leveled the playing field. At my ‘zenith’ as a corporate employee, I beat ivy’s for jobs. No way in hell some kid from the midwest could do that without public schools.

  40. Confused in NJ says:

    31.grim says:
    April 20, 2010 at 8:19 am
    I hear NJEA members are showing their true colors on Facebook.

    Their threats against Christie have become so violent, the administrator is deleting many. The interesting thing is how many teachers have spelling errors in their rants?

  41. cooper says:

    “In 1954, there were 17 workers to pay the Social Security cost for each retiree. By 1995, there will be only three for each retiree. It is likely that the productivity of these three workers per retiree will depend on the strength of our public school systems.”


    isn’t social security the biggest ponzi scheme going? So justify the fat payroll by instilling fear into the herd that SS will be gone? BS.

  42. willwork4beer says:

    #38/39 Essex

    I know you can be contrary at times just to generate some healthy debate.

    And please understand that I’m not anti-public schools or anti-teacher. Its just that the public schools are completely out of touch with reality right now and it is going to take a massive overhaul to get them straightened out, IMO.

  43. safeashouses says:

    I’m voting for my town’s budget. It’s 1.8% below this year’s budget. And that’s after we’ve lost all state aid.

    They are cutting administrators, kicking the aides out of the pension plan, eliminating middle school sports and ramping up intramural instead. Reducing teacher training, eliminating the overnight school trips, making kids pay for field trips. Slashing transport to what’s required by law. If you want little Graydon and Madison to ride the bus and you live too close to school, it’s going to cost you $750 a year.

  44. safeashouses says:


    should be school budget.

    Also all the remaining administrators are freezing their salaries.

    And the per pupil cost is below the state average. And this is a “blue ribbon” district.

  45. House Whine says:

    42- Agreed. The public school system needs its “correction”, just like the private sector is going through right now. It’s really, really hard for me to feel sympathy for these folks for their “hard times” when I have faced my own lay-off hell. I don’t believe the public sector folks ever empathized with me so tell me why I should now do so for them?

  46. Outofstater says:

    #40 Why is a threat by a student punishable by suspension or arrest but a threat by a teacher is “free speech” to be rewarded by a pay raise?

  47. willwork4beer says:

    #43 Safe

    My town out here in Hunterdon is asking for 4% for the Lower Cowchip Elementary School District and 3.94% for the South Hunterdon Regional HS.

    SHRHS already spends more per student than Teaneck Public Schools.

  48. meter says:

    @18 Essex:

    “1. Public education is a worthy investment for public funds. We can invest now, or we can pay later.”

    I’m all for a strong public education system. However, throwing money at a problem seldom fixes said problem, especially when a union is involved.

    Here’s my prescription:

    1) Break up the union and hire/promote based on merit.

    2) Consolidate school systems to a regional system where we have no more than 200 across the entire state.

    3) Fire every single administrator currently serving and rehire based on merit and at reasonable market rates.

    4) Eliminate the current pension system: require staff to contribute to their pensions and health benefits and do away with payouts for sick time and the ‘last three years’ rule as a basis for pension payments.

  49. Mr Hyde says:

    Doom 12

    a mile in, say, eight minutes

    Thats slow for an athlete! if they are only running 1 mile i would think more along the lines of 7 minutes max.

    I am old fat and slow and can still do a mile in 7 minutes

  50. A.West says:

    Final Doom wrote: “Public schools are the vehicle TPTB use to soften us up, impoverish us and indoctrinate us incrementally into collectivism.”

    Public schools were once about a group of parents having a meeting, going out to look for some teachers to educate their kids. They generally looked for value for money. Today’s public school establishment is about protecting the monopolist teacher unions from the customers, while using the political system to extract the maximum taxes from the masses. Some of the younger teachers also happen to love teaching, which the establishment uses to help it maintain its grip, and defend the system against criticism.

    Ironically, these teachers who love teaching, and do it well, are the ones who suffer at the hands of their union masters, because the union makes sure compensation is based on non-merit attributes. The smart teachers in this group go start private schools that delight their customers, going back to dealing directly with the customers, and skipping the middlemen (government & unions).

    As for indoctrinating kids with collectivism – what can you expect with a culture that’s steeped in it? The education establishment has simply condensed it further. But don’t forget that there’s a new religion they preach too – environmentalism. The essence of today’s science classes for young kids now is “let’s hold hands and hug the earth”.

  51. meter says:

    Tenure is poison.

  52. willwork4beer says:

    #45 Whine

    Aren’t you in Pennington? I heard they want a $400 increase on the average assessment.


  53. Mr Hyde says:


    An educated population is the cornerstone of democracy.

    yes… but education and being to taught parrot answers on multiple choice tests are 2 very different things. How many highschoolers understand basic personal finance, can perform basic logical deduction, or critical analysis?

    We currently have a well designed indoctrination system. An indoctrinated society is the bane of a democracy.

    Also note that we were not intended to be a democracy, but a democratic republic. A true democracy is mob rule by another name. Not so far from what we currently have where the politicians simply pander to the most numerous voting blocks.

  54. Mr Hyde says:

    Scribe 26

    Sadly, no.

  55. Mr Hyde says:

    33 Doom

    Nothing a nice volcanic Armageddon cant fix.

  56. safeashouses says:

    #47 beer

    The taxes for a house in our price range would go up $15 a month since the Big Man took away over 4.5 million in funding.

    This district seems to be doing everything the members of this blog want. The current teacher contract expires in 6/11. And I get the impression the raises will be in the zero to tiny range.

    They are also cutting 8 asst coaches at the high school level for 2010-11 and may start pay to play for high school sports for the 2011-12 year.

    It’s almost like the super is reading this blog.

  57. Confused in NJ says:

    The kindly school board lady indicated to me yesterday that Public Schools have a more difficult job then Private or Parochial Schools in that they have to cater to Special Needs Students, Disruptive Students, Foreign Language Students, and Illegal Aliens. This drives up their costs. I agreed with her and said the obvious solution is to move all students, not in those categoties, to Private or Parochial Schools at the cheaper rate, and eliminate the teachers associated with them, and let the Public Option stand for the remainder at the higher rate. Assuming the remainder is less than 50%, it should produce material savings without sacrificing quality. Although with our broken immigration policy we may find eventually 90% of the students are illegal. Of course that’s only if we revise the current law to Ask.

  58. willwork4beer says:

    #56 Safe

    Do you know how much it comes out to for the average assessment? Trying to compare apples to apples.

    Whine – I see the Hopewell Valley News has the Pennington proposed increase pegged at $700, not $400. My bad.

    Also, forgot to mention that Lower Cowchip and SHRHS also want to borrow millions of dollars this year in addition to the 4% increases. Two more no votes from me.

  59. JJ says:

    Big deal, school taxes in my town are like 5% of most people income. Most people have kids in the school. Paying 5% of your income 3 kids receive 39 years of education combined is not exactly cause for a tea party.

    Old people with no kids should just move to an senior community where they get a huge break on school taxes. That is what my aunt did.

  60. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    First, dont act like you are playing devils advocate. you are a public employee. You need to at least admit that because you defend that side every single day.

    Second, More money does not equal better education. No elaboration needed here.

    Third, If we allowed the school board to decide our property taxes, they would surely have us all paying $20k per year on a 3 bdrm cape.

    The revenues have already shrunk and we are on borrowed time.

    Vote no today or take personal responsibility for a massive wave of state and local govt bankruptcies.

  61. A.West says:

    Here’s a short video from the founder of a private school in CA entitled “Defining Success in Education”.

    I wish I was able to send my kid to her school.

  62. NJGator says:

    The people in West Orange are not happy. You know your town is f’ed when it looks like Bloomfield is getting a better return on their education dollars.

  63. safeashouses says:

    #58 beer,

    Taxes on a 630k house will go up $320. We are looking at houses much cheaper than that. I’ll let the mcmansion crew subsidize my kids edumacation.

  64. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (18) Essex

    All fair points. Still voting no.

  65. On the fence says:

    “Public schools are the vehicle TPTB use to soften us up, impoverish us and indoctrinate us incrementally into collectivism.”

    Doom (21):

    Maybe you’re onto something here, if by “The Powers That Be” you mean the Founding Fathers, who clearly saw education as a benefit to “the State” (see Jefferson, below) as much as a benefit to the individual:

    “Our schools of learning, by producing one general and uniform system of education, will render the mass of the people more homogeneous and thereby fit them more easily for uniform and peaceable government…Let our pupil be taught that he does not belong to himself, but that he is public property…By this mode of education, we prepare our youth for the subordination of laws and thereby qualify them for becoming good citizens of the republic. I am satisfied that the most useful citizens have been formed from those youth who have never known or felt their own wills till they were one and twenty years of age, and I have often thought that society owes a great deal of its order and happiness to the deficiencies of parental government being supplied by those habits of obedience and subordination which are contracted at schools. (Benjamin Rush–“Thoughts Upon the Mode of Education Proper in a Republic”)

    “By… [selecting] the youths of genius from among the classes of the poor, we hope to avail the State of those talents which nature has sown as liberally among the poor as the rich, but which perish without use if not sought for and cultivated…By this means twenty of the best geniusses will be raked from the rubbish annually.” (Thomas Jefferson–Notes on the State of Virginia)

  66. dan says:

    28. $100k is like minimum wage for anyone here in NJ. Even at $100k it would be impossible for anyone to live in Teaneck.

    And that’s why so many young people who realize they’re not going to make $100k for a couple of years leave the state.

  67. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    I’m 100% sure we can cut public school spending in half in every district across the state and still vastly improve the quality of education and all of the outcome measures.

    It requires a structural change at every level of the system. NOT MORE MONEY.

  68. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    The first step toward improving our schools starts with the mentality of the community, not with our check books.

    Unlimited funding is no longer viable.

  69. borat obama says:


  70. Confused in NJ says:

    60.JJ says:
    April 20, 2010 at 9:32 am
    Big deal, school taxes in my town are like 5% of most people income. Most people have kids in the school. Paying 5% of your income 3 kids receive 39 years of education combined is not exactly cause for a tea party.

    Old people with no kids should just move to an senior community where they get a huge break on school taxes. That is what my aunt did

    That my work, put all People without Children in Logans Run type internment camps and redistribute their assets to the NJEA.

  71. Dink says:

    Gator, West Orange has been a fascinating train wreck to watch.

    I just pulled that most recent 12 sales. Look at the taxes on these.

    Sale Price Taxes
    195000 9324
    180000 9205
    200000 8597
    259000 7704
    291000 8908
    299000 10351
    314000 11928
    325000 9385
    345000 10903
    368000 14679
    385000 11405
    470000 14527
    465000 15982

  72. willwork4beer says:

    #64 Safe


    For comparison, my town is $343 on $456K.

  73. House Whine says:

    63- I don’t know what has happened to the West Orange school system! I am a product of that school district and I received a very good education. It seems that over the years their ratings have been going downhill so something has gone very wrong there. All said, I am so glad that I am no longer an Essex County resident.

  74. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    If my schools are to lead by example, i want them to teach my child how to balance a budget.

    If they cant do that, i want them all out. Will be pleased to start from scratch. Clean slate. Back to basics. Roll up the sleeves, get to the chalk board and start cracking those text books. Follow this up with plenty of meaningful homework, which requires 30 minutes of a parents time each night.

    This will cost $2,000 per child per year. 80% cost savings. On top of that this approach will make the SAT scores explode to the upside.

    And while we are reforming the system, we should start teaching the consitution again in public schools. Seems to me that would be one of the first priorities of American education. unless of course you dont want people to be familiar with their rights and freedoms.

  75. NJGator says:

    Dink 72- They actually make me feel better about our taxes in Montclair. We have friends in the St. Cloud section. They bought their house in 2003 for $525k. Their taxes were over 18k before they won their appeal last year. I think they reduced them to $15,500.

  76. NJGator says:

    Dink 72 – I think they have a revaluation coming up soon too.

  77. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [27] essex

    “I like O’s new mocking tone.”

    Me too. Makes clear the fact that Obama doesn’t give a rat’s ass about nearly half of the population, and considers them to be the enemy.

    We also need a more strident tone, and perhaps a fistfight or two in the well of the House.

    Finally, it pisses the voters off royally, and potentially hastens the advent of Civil War 2.0, although I think that highly unlikely. More likely, a liberal congresscritter, journalist or blogger gets capped.

  78. JJ says:

    100k is nothing, college educated couples don’t get married to around 32, by then their combined income is 200K and they put off their two kids till 36 and 38 and then by the time oldest kid hits first grade and juggling gets hard Mom becomes a stay at home mom. At that point hubby is at peak salary, wife has fully funded her 401k and retirement plan after 20 years of work and home is easily manageble as hubbie had nine years worth of raises and one or two promotions since he took it out. That is who uppidity neighborhoods are geared towards, not shoprite clerks. However, the clerks in re boom bought in those neighborhoods and now they can’t figure why they are going broke when their neighbor who works in city and has MBA is going to disney world.

    dan says:
    April 20, 2010 at 9:50 am
    28. $100k is like minimum wage for anyone here in NJ. Even at $100k it would be impossible for anyone to live in Teaneck.

    And that’s why so many young people who realize they’re not going to make $100k for a couple of years leave the state.

  79. House Whine says:

    76- That is crazy! The St. Cloud section is not exactly luxury housing. It’s a nice, solid middle class, leafy section but I cannot for one minute imagine paying even $15,500 for property taxes.

  80. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:
  81. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:

    Let hope he “remembers who his friends are!!!!”

  82. NJGator says:

    HEHEHE – Please refrain from using both “honorable” and “Cammarano” in the same sentence.

  83. beanbear says:

    Gator #124 (from wknd disc).

    Saw that house too – the basement was a scene from “Hoarders”…and strangely had systems for 2 sep units (as if multi-family).

    The other N end house @ $479K is in multiples already, I hear. Will definitely go over ‘5’, just a matter of how much. Good shape, but needs a whole new kitchen, the huge deck needs to be removed, and there’s more Ridgewood Ave noise than I’d have thought.

    Also saw a short sale on Stonehouse in Bloomfield. Needs work, but could be a good value, if gotten below asking. 1 of the neighbors came by and said she’s also putting hers on mkt and sounds like she might price around 450K. What do folks think of Brookdale Elem?

  84. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [41] cooper

    “It is likely that the productivity of these three workers per retiree will depend on the strength of our public school systems.”

    Actually, I think that the productivity will also depend on whether the three workers are properly incentivized to produce. We are getting to the point in our tax system where incentive is being squeezed, although I am of the opinion that this collateral effect isn’t entirely unintentional. Dems have a lot to gain by creating a less productive society where less is done by more.

  85. NJGator says:

    House Whine 80 – And that is before this year’s tax hike. School tax likely going up 7.3%, municipal tax probably up 6% and Essex County looks almost reasonable with their 2% hike. Add all those up and they will probably be at $16,500!

  86. Final Doom says:

    confused (40)-

    I read through the NJEA Facebook thread. No better proof exists that we now have the ignorant creating another generation of ignorance.

    The gubmint has just about closed the loop on turning us into good little consumers who take orders well and cannot construct or follow a rational thought from beginning to end.

    The dunces who teach honors & AP courses at our local “Blue Ribbon” HS make me want to puke.

    We are really no different from Venezuela.

  87. NJGator says:

    Beanbear 84 – Brookdale elementary is fine. Oakview is also well regarded. But what is your plan for middle school?

  88. NJGator says:

    Beanbear 84 – Re Harvard Street – also needs new bathrooms. And the furnace might be as old as my father.

  89. Final Doom says:

    I cannot imagine my daughter functioning in college…until I stop to remember that college now is the same fetid slop you get shoveled down your throat in HS.

    Only difference is the price. And college has keggers & date r@pe.

  90. Final Doom says:

    safe (43)-

    That is an instance in which I could vote for a budget. A little shared sacrifice and an overall cut? Nothing wrong with that.

  91. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:


    I don’t think those title’s can be removed once elected.

  92. RentinginNJ says:

    14… An educated population is the cornerstone of democracy. This nation’s well-being depends on the decisions of its educated, informed citizens.

    The current business of public education is designed for the benefit of unionized labor. If an educated population and “the kids” really came first, we would hold teachers to higher standards, eliminate tenure and allow students in failing urban schools the opportunity to choose a different school.

  93. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    For the first time I actually did some research on Board of Indoctrination candidates.

    I have to pick 2 from a class of 6.

    1 guy looks promising. Hes 69 so you know he wont raise property taxes.

    The other guy is running as his partner.

    The rest are hardcore agents of the UN. Should be a bloodbath for the tit suckers.

  94. beanbear says:

    Gator (88) –

    No kids til next yr (at earliest), so we’ve got almost 10 yrs-or-so. If we stay in the area, we’d probably trade up to GR. But we have a soft spot for the West too, where we just re-loc’d from, so who knows…

    We’ve only just started looking beyond GR + parts of Montclair, so we’ve been trying to get a sense of (sane) pricing GR-adjacent Bloomfield. If the house is in good shape and decently-finished, the mid-4’s seems right to me so far…

  95. House Whine says:

    86- Fascinating. So let me ask- do the majority of the W.O. residents work in NYC? Where are they getting all the bucks from to pay for all these taxes? I am very curious because I don’t recall W.O. being a particularly wealthy town and driving through it recently the properties are looking really old and worn. Never would I have imagined that Bloomfield would rate almost evenly as far as school quality as W.O. That is a very strange twist.

  96. dan says:

    100k is nothing, college educated couples don’t get married to around 32, by then their combined income is 200K and they put off their two kids till 36 and 38 and then by the time oldest kid hits first grade and juggling gets hard Mom becomes a stay at home mom. At that point hubby is at peak salary, wife has fully funded her 401k and retirement plan after 20 years of work and home is easily manageble as hubbie had nine years worth of raises and one or two promotions since he took it out.


    You are so correct!!!! And by the way, there is no recession, housing is great and we’re all cheering Congress for finally passing Health Care Reform!!!!

    Seriously, if what you wrote were a majority of the population, you’d be correct. Unfortunately, your example in my opinion is a declining group of people, especially here in NJ.

  97. NJGator says:

    bean 95 – That short sale has been sitting for ages. If you look at the tax records, it looks like the owners sucked all the equity out of the place to buy a $1M house on Forest Ave in Glen Ridge and are now looking to stiff the bank. Classy.

    They bought the house for $265k in 1995 and now it’s short at $450k? Did any of that money actually go into the Stonehouse home? It’s been sitting for a long time at the current ask.

  98. dan says:


    Furthermore, don’t count on the current crew of Obamabots graduating high school and college to follow your life track. Wish more of them do and can though.

  99. RentinginNJ says:

    The argument against any type of voucher program is that you will skim the cream and leave a concentration of the poorest & most disadvantaged in the worst schools. I don’t see how this is much different then the reality today.

    The solution is to make vouchers an all or nothing proposition; a private/different public school either accepts the voucher as “payment in full” or they don’t accept vouchers at all. This will prevent parents with money from using the vouchers as a down payment, while leaving behind parents who can’t afford the extra expense of a different school

  100. Final Doom says:

    Dan, JJ is a time traveler from 1962.

    He’s also got a bit part on Mad Men.

  101. dan says:

    Based on the top ten list earlier today, I would have thought Essex was the time traveler.

  102. Confused in NJ says:

    The state may be broke, but U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) today said $628 million in federal money may become available for cash-starved New Jersey schools.

    Can’t blame Menendez for promising money he doesn’t have (Feds are Broke). Blame his teachers. They obviously taught him wrong.

  103. NJGator says:

    House Whine 96 – I don’t think it ever really was. But you did have a bunch of folks buying there during market peak when they got priced out of South Orange/Montclair/Maplewood. A lot of homes sole very high in St. Cloud and Upper Gregory in those years.

  104. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Tax News of the Day:

    [If I were the Fat Man, I’d be telling our business community leaders to quietly advocate for this in New York State]

    “New York Report Urges Higher
    State Taxes on Wall Street Firms

    ALBANY, N.Y.—New York state should raise taxes on Wall Street financial firms to close $6 billion of the state’s $9 billion projected budget deficit for the 2010-11 fiscal year, according to an April 19 report from two labor-backed think tanks.

    The report includes a number of options to temporarily and permanently raise revenues, including a temporary bonus recapture tax modeled after one in the United Kingdom. The state would levy a tax of 25 percent to 50 percent on certain bonuses for those earning more than $250,000 in total compensation.
    The report said the state could raise almost $3 billion by temporarily reducing the state’s stock transfer tax rebate from 100 percent to 80 percent.

    Under current law, New York imposes a stock transfer tax, but then refunds the entire amount through an automatic 100 percent rebate.

    The report also calls for temporarily suspending the state’s carryforward provisions for 2007 and 2008 net operating losses, and creation of a temporary windfall profits tax on financial firms whose profits exceed a certain threshold in 2009 and 2010.

    “Given Wall Street’s extraordinary 2009 profits, underwritten in full by a taxpayer bailout, New York’s financial industry is well-positioned to help bring fiscal stability to the state, and tax relief and basic fairness to working New Yorkers,” the report said.

    Other Changes Proposed

    The report was prepared by the Fiscal Policy Institute and the Center for Working Families.

    Michael Moran, a spokesman for the Business Council of New York State, said the proposed taxes would be an “economic disaster” for the state. “This sector is vital to New York’s entire economy,” Moran said in comments e-mailed to BNA.
    “The state has already increased taxes on this sector by $3.33 billion since 2007. The sector already contributes $12.6 billion in total state taxes,” he said.

    In addition to temporary measures, the report calls for permanent changes in state taxes to raise additional revenues from businesses and financial firms. The permanent measures proposed include establishing a cap on the total amount of state corporate tax credits and increasing the progressivity of the personal income tax.

    The report said revenues from the temporary and permanent measures should be used to close the state’s budget deficit, fund a property tax circuit breaker, and bring long-term balance to the state’s budget.”

    I don’t see this happening, but if it did, it is ridiculously easy for a financial firm to formally move its HQ and certain of its operations to NJ. And it could be paid for with tax savings.

  105. JJ says:

    Hey recession ended almost a year ago, sales in Hamptons are up 50% and 1Q 2009 to 1Q 2010 prices are up 50%!!! Stock market up almost 80% in last year, Tiffney and high end stores are raising prices, cruises are being book, flight prices are rising. Unemployment if falling, heck even used car values have risen.

    One problem I find is idiot Mothers and Fathers pay for kids to go to expensive schools to take majors that are useless and either kids or parents rack up excessive debt to do it.

    Path to success was and still is, good solid employable degree from local college, live at home, do internships or have Part time jobs at good companies, graduate debt free, get job at one of these companies, live at home for a few years and save so when you get married to a person who did same thing you can put a good downpayment on house and wife can afford to stay home.

    Now it is rack up huge debt for school, put spring break on credit cards, get apt in city after graduation even though you make peanuts, get married with tons of debt to someone with tons of debt and then complain you have no money and you both have to work full time to the day you die.

  106. RentL0rd says:

    It’s been a while since I posted here. Hello to all who remember.

    A quick search for public records of teacher salaries revealed this site:

  107. NJGator says:

    Nom 105 – Did Jeremiah Healy write that proposal?

  108. New in NJ says:

    Lawrence Lessig uses a broadband policy analysis as a launching point for a much broader discussion of what is wrong with US policy making processes.

    This is just under an hour in duration, but certainly worth the time.

  109. On the fence says:

    “We are getting to the point in our tax system where incentive is being squeezed…”

    Nom (85):

    You, Doom, and nearly everyone in here keep bemoaning the lack of critical thought among the ‘sheeple,’ and yet you repeat a party line that is, plain and simple, propaganda, not fact. Take a moment to think about your ideas re: taxes in the U.S. When you turn on the TV, or talk to your neighbors, do you not sense that your intuitions about this subject (i.e., that ‘taxes are too high,’ or that ‘it’s my money–I should be allowed to spend it as I see fit,’ or similar sentiments) are generally shared by the herd? Of course they are. Almost all opinion polls that ask a question about taxation confirm that the majority of Americans believe that taxes are a net evil. They believe it because it is, in essence, modern-day conventional wisdom. It has reached the level of unquestioned ‘common sense’ among most Americans.

    Way off the radar of the much-vilified MSM, however, is a body of research that suggests that what the herd believes about taxes, and especially about taxes vis a vis productivity, is wrong:

    “It is well known that higher taxes and transfers reduce productivity. Well known–but unsupported by statistics and history. … On the one hand, many people see strong intuitive reasons for believing that the rise of national tax-based social transfers should have reduced at least GDP, if not true well-being. On the other, the fairest statistical tests of this argument find no cost at all. Multivariate analysis leaves us with the same warnings sounded by the raw historical numbers. A bigger tax bite to finance social spending does not correlate negatively with either the level or the growth of GDP per capita. How can that be true? Why haven’t
    countries that tax and transfer a third of national product grown any more slowly than countries that devote only a seventh of GDP to social transfers?
    … All of our well-known demonstrations of the large dead-weight losses from social programs overuse imagination and assumption. There are good reasons why statistical tests keep coming up with near-zero estimates of the net damage from social programs on economic growth. It’s not just that the tales of dead-weight losses describe bad policies that real-world welfare states do not practice. It’s also that the real-world welfare states reap offsetting benefits from a style of taxing and spending that is pro-growth.”

  110. RentinginNJ says:

    Still not sure what I’m going to do….

    We are looking at an 8% tax increase

    On one hand, the school budget is 1% less than last year’s budget and there will be some layoffs.

    On the other hand, tenured teachers are giving up nothing…extra curricular activities, non-tenured teachers and support staff will bare the full brunt of the cuts. I would be more comfortable with swallowing the tax increase if I saw teachers put something on the table

  111. beanbear says:

    Gator (98)

    …ah, different house. The 1 we’re looking @ is further N, just S of Forest Ave School. On for $429K, bought for $552K (2006) w/ another small 2nd loan on top of it. The current owners have been current so far, but have to reloc this summer, so they’ll be turning in the keys in a couple mo’s regardless.

    Hard to get decent, guiding comps for this area – there’s a quirky, yardless split-level on Essex for $360-something, and there’s a short sale (tho’ a smaller house) also on Essex that’s going to close around that amount.

    But 19 Stonehouse went for $485K ($499K asking), and 16 Cambridge went for asking ($489K) – both seem quite high to me. And then there’s the $450K short that you referred to that’s been sitting (is that a bank-approved sale price?).

  112. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [263][prior thread] schabadoo

    ” agree, the Georgia Arms thing really set it off.”

    What struck me about the brass sale suspension was the fact that the government had contracts to sell the brass. When they suspended sales, they (arguably) breached the contracts.

    Thus, my guess as to why the DoD reversed itself was, in part, the prospect of litigation (although I further suspect that those contracts had provisions to allow DoD to suspend or terminate the contracts for cause).

    Nice try at spin also, but the fact that it was a policy dreamed up under Bush is immaterial; the Obama admin. adopted it, not the Bush admin. And I am sure you agree that the Bush admin. had some pretty stupid policies, adopted or not, right?

    Further, it could not have been about national security as the blog suggest since companies other than reloaders could still manufacture and sell; how does it benefit national security if you put 4 out of 15 suppliers out of business but leave the rest untouched? Which leaves me with just three conclusions: (1) the admin. wanted to make some small anti-gun headway under cover of the prior admin.; (2) it was in bed with the major manufacturers (which is equally plausible as there is precedent—look at tobacco taxes and how they were allocated); or (3) the national security position also called for the complete shutdown of manufacturing and sales (not published so we don’t know).

  113. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    “A bigger tax bite to finance social spending does not correlate negatively with either the level or the growth of GDP per capita. How can that be true?”

    It can be true because the taxes are being spent by govt and included in the GDP.

  114. Final Doom says:

    confused (103)-

    Menendez is a thug and a gangster who should be hanged until dead.

  115. Mr Hyde says:

    On the fence 110

    taxes are a net evil

    There are 2 arguments there that need to be separated. The first question, the net impact of a given level of taxation on a societal scale metric, is what is being argued in the article. The second question, is it morally justifiable for the government to lay claim to the output of your personal labor and if so how much.

    In my opinion it is the question of the validity of social transfers that is primarily at issue with many of the bloggers here.

    Assuming the fruits of your labor are lawfully obtained then what right does anyone else have to those fruits? if the state or any other entity has some inherent claim on the fruits of your personal labor then how is that inherently different from a base form of slavery?

  116. Mr Hyde says:


    How about we compared GDP minus government spending which must always generate a net loss in efficiency, i.e. vetothat will more efficiently spend $100 then the government taxiing Vetothat $100 and then spending the money.

  117. NJGator says:

    bean 112 – Not sure if the other price was approved. Our friends on the block said it has been rented out for a while. There are no interior pics, so I’m guessing it’s not very nice inside.

    Bloomfield side of Stonehouse right by Forest Avenue school? I imagine that’s like being a prisoner in Alcatraz with the mecca of SF tormenting you whenever you see it.

    Our Stonehouse friends have been telling everyone they live in Glen Ridge for the last five years. Gig is finally up when their kid attends Brookdale this fall.

  118. Final Doom says:

    Is On the Fence really plg?

    Same dysfunctional thinking.

  119. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [110] fence;

    “You, Doom, and nearly everyone in here keep bemoaning the lack of critical thought among the ’sheeple,’ and yet you repeat a party line that is, plain and simple, propaganda, not fact.”

    You link to one study from a UCal economist publishing at Harvard, and call it “fact”? Would it then be disproven if I link to a contrary study? Since I don’t consider you stupid, I will agree with you that such a counterposition proves nothing.

    Economics and scholarly study are nice, but the real world is where we live, and I think that there is a body of evidence to support the proposition that social welfare policy causes deadweight loss. It is this real world experience that leads to such ideas taking on the imprimatur of “common wisdom.” You take issue with that and point to a study. Fair enough. But if you need me to cite a study, I will (or you can acknowledge that they are out there and just score it as a “gimme”).

    I submit you need only look to the world as it is—European states with high social welfare costs historically have historically lagged the US in productivity. Now they are catching up, or the US is trending down, because of similarities in our systems. Contrast that to the emerging economies without similar constraints, like China, Korea, and until late, Japan, where rapid and sustained growth has occurred in the absence of a european style welfare state.

    Further, I suspect your study ignores externalities that produced spasms of growth in the US, such as the tech boom of the 80s and 90s (yes, it really did begin in the 80’s–the craze was an outgrowth of cheaper, better tech), or wars (hot or cold). Also, I suspect it ignores trade policy and the effect it has on GDP, thus insulating a social welfare state from depressive effects by disincentivizing capital flight. That is one reason I have said Obama needs protectionism in order to keep his policies from crippling our economy.

    Admittedly, these are difficult things to quantify and put into a study, but folks do, and that is how they get their doctorates. Doesn’t make any of the research or conclusions correct, but it does give us something to point to.

    The dems feel that are right and they have the votes. They can implement the new welfare state and we can see what happens. I have a pretty good idea how it will turn out though.

  120. Final Doom says:

    Anyone dumb enough to live in Bloomfield deserves whatever comes their way.

  121. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    using GDP is a bad way to measure the value to society from public vs private.

    A better comparison would be the reasearch and innovation break throughs that have been created from the private sector and compare them to the breakthroughs that the public sector have created. In medicine, technology, science, etc.

    You will find that govt doesnt do those things nearly as well as private sector because the govt does everything with the intent of not making any mistakes and therefore takes no risk. In the long run thats a bad thing for many reasons.

  122. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:


    This will make your blood boil.
    “More evidence has arisen that the “strategic default” consumer spending thesis is correct – and that the economic recovery on the whole is based on a rotten sham.”

  123. sas says:

    “What happens in public schools is not education”

    its about educating one to do one task and one task only, to be controlled like an assembly line.

    efficiency & productivity = self worth.
    thanks to the ladder system industrialized economy.


  124. sas says:

    ya gotta love the middle managers.
    talk about the biggest saps of them all.


  125. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    The flip side of the coin is when there is no govt regulation. Thats when you have what happened with the 2008 credit crisis.
    The two sides need eachother but its a balancing act.

  126. Final Doom says:

    plume (120)-

    I have family in France and Canada as my reference point. They are educated, intelligent, and- for the most part- ambitionless, flaccid and brainwashed.

  127. Final Doom says:

    My cousins in Paris sympathize with the disaffected, violent Muslim youth that wouldn’t think twice about cutting their throats to steal 20ff.

  128. NJGator says:

    Doom – Their school budget elections should be interesting today. Their teachers voted no to a pay freeze so there will be a big tax increase and layoffs. They also have a ballot inititiave to bond $3M for just part of the renovations to their athletic stadium. This actually got voted down earlier this year, but somehow the board got it put back on the ballot for another try. Democracy only counts when you get the “right” result I guess.

    Can’t wait to see what happens when people get their first post revaluation tax bills. The new tax rate is higher than Glen Ridge’s.

  129. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [119] doom

    I didn’t mind arguing with plg nearly as much as you did. For some reason, plg got under your skin more than mine.

    I felt he/she were arguing the same facts and relying on the same logical precepts as others, not inventing their own rules of logic to fit their arguments as some here appear to do.

  130. Dink says:

    16 Stonehorse still requires third party approval. Its been listed for 559 days at 449K. Prior to that it was stuck at 649K for 617 days.

    Gator,is this your friends place? One of the expired listings shows..


  131. Final Doom says:

    I was ok with plg until the bike-thru-Camden thing.

  132. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [122] veto

    I’ll add those to the list of externalities that Fence’s study appears to ignore. Thanks.

  133. Mr Hyde says:


    We could have probably avoided many aspects of the latest bubble period if existing laws were actually enforced.

  134. Final Doom says:

    Now that I think of it, the bike-thru-Camden thing could easily be turned into a real-life Running Man.

  135. Final Doom says:

    Richard Dawson died before his time.

  136. NJGator says:

    Dink – Our friends aren’t currently on the market. They were looking in Glen Ridge for a while, but the husband was laid off late last year.

    They bought their place for about $485k back in 2004. Theirs is completely updated with a nice downstairs (EIK, powder room, LR, DR and Family Room). They also have a finished basement and deck.

    I wonder what it would go for now – definitely nicer than the two short sales, but both of those are priced way below their purchase price.

  137. Mr Hyde says:


    Combine the running man concept with the recent MOMA exhibit, locate it in Camden and we have Extreme Running Man, MOMA Edition!

    We could even make it a traveling show and hit up places like the slums of baltimore and of course south central LA!

  138. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [138] hyde

    Better yet—Death Race 2012.

  139. Mr Hyde says:


    I dont know. The thought of overweight MC’D’s feed slobs running naked through Camden trying to avoid being mugged/shot/beaten, would be a visual spectacle that would draw huge viewing audiences.

    Track down some of the old American Gladitor guys and make them the hunters.

  140. Final Doom says:

    Looks like the carry vs the yen is back on.

    Just another day in the salt mines…

  141. RentinginNJ says:

    A better comparison would be the research and innovation break throughs that have been created from the private sector and compare them to the breakthroughs that the public …You will find that govt doesnt do those things nearly as well as private sector because the govt does everything with the intent of not making any mistakes

    I agree with the conclusion, but have a different hypothesis on the cause. I don’t think that government is overly cautions, but rather they are inherently set up to squash innovation.

    Innovation is a threat to the staus quo and consequently a threat to those who are in position of power. The “creative destruction” of capitalism means that people will loose their job and that companies that don’t innovate will go under. The problem is these people vote and these companies contribute to political campaigns; and they demand protection from creative destruction (or subsidies to innovate at their own pace); they demand their jobs be saved. The stronger and better that would replace the old and inefficient doesn’t have a vote or any political constituency.

    In a free market, we would let GM go under. People still drive cars, they would be replaced with something better, but we don’t allow that because the process is too scary. Instead we prop up the status quo.

  142. Mr Hyde says:


    double down and go for the million $ trade!

    As a rough estimate 65K should be enough to build the position but you’d have a very tight margin in the beginning of the trade

  143. Mr Hyde says:


    Know any good loan sharks?

  144. Essex says:

    124. Oy vey. That is patently absurd. Hi, allow me to introduce myself. I am competition (sports/academics) I am self-confidence (friends/social) I am the very essence of a dynamic and evolving (yes I like Darwin)nation !

  145. Essex says:

    Please get over yourselves. The pushback from a ham fisted GOP leader is creating a local upswell. He hopes the cuts would be made (yet he grew his own team by $2M) and the locals foot the bill. Maybe the taxes will drive the riff raff away. Probably not though, right Al?

  146. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    I think I have to read this economist’s book, as he is predicting much of what I am.

    “Spirit of Reagan, Thatcher Doomed: HSBC Economist

    The political philosophies espoused by former leaders Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher will wither and die as the West watches its financial and political power ebb away to the East, according to HSBC’s chief economist.

    In his new book “Losing Control, The Emerging Threats to Western Prosperity,” HSBC’s Stephen King argues that the growing might of China, India and the other emerging nations has killed off the assumption of continuously improving living standards for those in the United States and Western Europe. . . .

    What it Means for Joe Public

    The implications of this thesis for the average Western man or woman on the street and the financial markets could be very worrying.

    • Western savers will not be able to accumulate sufficient assets to allow a comfortable retirement.

    • We can expect continued disruption to inflation, capital markets and trade by the gravitational pull of the emerging world.

    • Policymakers will discover limits to their sovereign powers.

    • As Western populations age they will run out of workers (we should welcome foreign migrants to our nations.)

    • The growing links between the emerging nations suggest the rise of new alliances that will ultimately threaten Western interests.

    • We face increasing emerging market ownership of Western assets and control over energy supplies. . . .”

  147. Libtard says:


    You had me until “The dems feel that are right and they have the votes.”

    I think you need to correct this to read, “The dems, just like their repub brethren, will do whatever it takes to guarantee future votes.”

    Neither side really cares what is better for you and me. We are not part of that 1% which they represent.

  148. Final Doom says:

    hyde (143)-

    Tight margin in the beginning? More like strangulation.

    I’m no veteran fx guy, but I have had the experience of being margined out in the blink of an eye (in the midst of sitting at my computer, feeling like the king of the world…until the momentum shifted against me). Were that to have been a significant amount of money, I would’ve committed seppuku.

  149. Final Doom says:

    hyde (144)-

    I do. The really sad thing is, a couple of them are better than the bankers I know.

  150. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    Hmm i wonder if apple will blow the doors off earnings estimates after the bell?

  151. Final Doom says:

    veets, AAPL wrote the book on setting low expectations and then crushing them.

  152. Essex says:

    147. Kind of cuts to the quick right there. Nice summation. Fear=Chaos Money=Freedom

  153. On the fence says:

    Hyde (116):

    You’re right—the article I linked to is rather straightforwardly analytical, not concerned with the ethical question you pose.

    If one’s labors existed in a vacuum, unsupported in any way by common goods shared and sustained by all citizens, then yes, compulsory social transfer of the fruits of one’s labor would be akin to slavery. But of course our labor is fruitful precisely because of the web of common goods that our fellow citizens fund and support.

    A common rhetorical move at this stage in the discussion is to claim that those common goods aren’t really that numerous or complex. I suppose that that point of view is at least arguable, but it’s not an assumption that I share with you or others here, and not one that I’m inclined to argue ad infinitum. If you truly believe that the value of common goods is negligible, or that the roster of common goods is short, then no amount of arguing is likely to change your mind.

    Speaking only for myself, it seems pretty clear to me that my own ambitions and achievements (which are not insignificant) have been helped along in large part by a complex web of common goods, goods that citizens of other countries (most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, for example) have no access to. My successes, and the fruit of those successes, are mine, but they are not only mine.

    Because of my assumptions regarding common goods, I would feel that I was playing the role of the free rider if I were to retain the entirety of the fruits of my labor. In essence, the moral status of my actions would be akin to stealing.

    So, anyway, that’s my take on the moral / ethical question. I understand that I part ways with you and probably everyone else here on this point, so I guess this just gets added to the ‘agree to disagree’ pile.

  154. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    I am 100% sure aapl has sold more handheld computers than anyone can imagine in their wildest dreams based solely on the basis that i dont know anyone who doesnt want one badly.

  155. JJ says:

    aig shooting up with no news, perhaps they are going to sue GS?

  156. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [146] essex

    You do understand that our Dear Leader has said he wants to remake the economy, and his policies will have the effect, if not the intent, of rolling back some wage and price inflation, don’t you?

    He has also come out in favor of holding teachers accountable.

    So, in a sense, voting no on the budgets will further Obama’s unstated goal of lowering housing costs, pushing back on various bloated salaries, and making schools accountable.

    I know, it is a bit attenuated, but I think that there is a good argument to be made that Obama wants us to vote no on these budgets!

  157. Libtard says:

    On the Fence,

    Can you loan me some dough?

  158. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    umm, ok
    ‘on the fence’ is definately plg.

    No doubt about it.

    I can smell the petruli oil from here.

  159. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [154] fence

    “Because of my assumptions regarding common goods, I would feel that I was playing the role of the free rider if I were to retain the entirety of the fruits of my labor. In essence, the moral status of my actions would be akin to stealing.”

    How do you square this with the concept of progressive taxation?

  160. JJ says:

    I have never used an Apple product and I have no clue what they do. I only know one person who has ever used an Apple product.

    I have a laptop, cell phone and blackberry why do I need more crap that does the same?

    veto that – lawrence yun ‘the panda’, ‘next fall’ says:
    April 20, 2010 at 12:33 pm
    I am 100% sure aapl has sold more handheld computers than anyone can imagine in their wildest dreams based solely on the basis that i dont know anyone who doesnt want one badly.

  161. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [159] veto

    I’m not convinced that Fence is plg.

    I sense a different tone of argument, and a different position. Today’s points are rational, defensible, and more in the camp of items over which we disagree only as to degree.

    IMHO, plg was a lot more strident, and less given to nuance. If it is plg, he has evolved his argument (though not his positions).

  162. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [159] veto

    Though you could be right. I have been wrong before, and will be again.

  163. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    “Net income is expected to soar by 88% to $2.25 billion.”

    Name me any other large company that is almost doubling their bottom line in the middle of a depression. I want to know so that i can add it to my portfolio.

    AAPL does a very effective job of coupling a consumption addicted society with the slave labor of the third world. As far as stocks go, this is a recipe for success.

    Disclaimer: Any stock i buy or recomend typically drops like a rock within 48 hours.

  164. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    “I have a laptop, cell phone and blackberry why do I need more crap that does the same?”

    John Im learning that aapl is all of these things in the palm of your hand or resting conveniently on your belt buckle. Only faster, more reliable and easier to use.

    And no, an ipad has nothing to do with feminine products.

  165. On the fence says:

    Veto (159):

    Don’t know who plg is. I’ve only ever been this here moniker on

    I assume you mean patchouli. Whatever. I wear a suit and do the same middle-class march that so many other tri-state commuters do. You’d never pick me out from the white-collar crowd.

  166. chicagofinance says:

    I hope they grind his rectum into powder.

    Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:
    April 20, 2010 at 10:18 am
    The Honorable Peter Cammarano to plead guilty:

  167. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    Nom, ok, i take it back after re-reading.
    im not 100% sure anymore.
    Im now 90% sure and if not then the other 10% says that its the dali lama.

  168. Mr Hyde says:

    Doom 149

    But thats half the fun! Live on the edge!!!

    Its even better when you do a few lines of blow first!

  169. JJ says:

    IPAD is stupid, number one downloaded AP is Scrabble, idiots buyers

    And no, an ipad has nothing to do with feminine products.

  170. Final Doom says:

    chi (167)-

    If the judge doesn’t, his new wife, Mandingo, certainly will.

  171. Final Doom says:

    hyde (169)-

    You forget that back in the day, I worked in an office where half the agents were doing blow and day-trading .com stocks.

    I sat floor hours many a time for somebody too tweaked out and margined up to walk away from his desk.

    In a way, I owe my career to and cocaine.

  172. A.West says:

    plg was all about “I live my life for others in society”
    Fence is all about “Everything good about me was given to me by society”

    Clearly each of them believes that “society” is some sort of entity in and of itself, way superior to his/her own individual life.

    One likes to pitch, the other likes to catch.

  173. MW802 says:

    Its always interesting to me to hear how “productive” and hard working the Its always interesting to me to hear how “productive” and hard working the American worker is especially compared to those lazy Europeans. I often wonder what does this actually translate into. A better healthier life? better products? American cars are so much better than those silly European ones? Timex is the best watch in the world? Zenith is better than Sony? Two weeks vacation in Disneyland better than the average European who’s been all over the world (6 weeks a year), often paid for by their employer? What has this America Dream gotten us except for access to credit and ultimately debt. Seems to me the American dream and productivity growth is basically the extension of debt and little else. The national debt at $13 or so trillion. Is this staggering number a reflection of our superior productivity? That $100k home that was bought in 1980 has since been borrowed against to buy must have plasma’s and suv’s and that house is now worth $300k with a $350k debt against it. Very productive. The saps who bought into this “dream” have made the banks and corporate officers who they worked for very happy – their productivity worked out very well for them.

  174. Mr Hyde says:


    I am not suggesting a black/white argument in the moral sense. that is what makes it so difficult. Where do you draw the line.

    I strongly disagree with progressive tax policies and think that the majority of common use infrastructure should be funded through use taxes. I also believe we should all have a proportional amount of skin in the game hence why i think a flat tax structure is one of the few that makes sense and is in any way “just” in the long run.

    I feel that they current tax structures and tax burdens are morally indefensible.

  175. Essex says:

    157. It is six of one half a dozen of the other.

  176. Mr Hyde says:


    So whats the going APR for 65K from a loan shark?

  177. Final Doom says:


    With our without leaving an earlobe as collateral?

    No earlobe: 30%, payments in cash by first of the month.

    First missed payment gets you harrassed by phone. Subsequent missed payments earn you a personal visit from Bensonhurst or Gravesend Collection Agency.

  178. Final Doom says:

    If I needed 65K in a pinch, I’d probably go to Vinnie the Mook before pulling it off my JPM card.

  179. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    OTF. yes thx for spell checking patchouli. thats very important to get that word right.

    Clearly taxation and social goods are a nuanced discussion that also happens to cover a lot of ground. as much as i’d love to take the bait and split hairs over philosophical vaguery, i usually try to stay away from those types of discussions as they tend to turn my afternoon into a black hole.

  180. Final Doom says:

    The real fun with Brooklyn collection guys is when they come to Raritan or Bound Brook and the borrowers’ friends all turn up en masse and send them packing.

  181. chicagofinance says:

    On the fence says:
    April 20, 2010 at 11:02 am
    Multivariate analysis leaves us with the same warnings sounded by the raw historical numbers.
    … All of our well-known demonstrations of the large dead-weight losses from social programs overuse imagination and assumption. There are good reasons why statistical tests keep coming up with near-zero estimates of the net damage from social programs on economic growth. It’s not just that the tales of dead-weight losses describe bad policies that real-world welfare states do not practice. It’s also that the real-world welfare states reap offsetting benefits from a style of taxing and spending that is pro-growth.”

    fence: I posit that the argument you reference really does not consider the reality of exported wealth transfer and legal tax avoidance. When marginal rates are sufficiently high, then it begins to really build an opportunity cost to failing to expatriate money into a lower tax jurisdiction. Often what you see is capital being shielded from taxes in external locations instead of being deployed locally for economic stimulation.

    Of course there are friction costs, and it tends to create stickiness in investment pools, but in its most simplistic and anecdotal form for the people on these threads…….you don’t see the dead weight loss in NJ? Please…be real…

  182. Final Doom says:

    Every afternoon is a black hole for me.

  183. Mr Hyde says:


    So the same terms as a BAC credit card…. Do i get miles too?

  184. On the fence says:

    West (174):

    Dude, you’re a horrible reader. I didn’t say what you say I say, as anyone else reading what I said could tell you.

    Hyde, Nom:

    I respectfully acknowledge that you (both) and I disagree on the merits of progressive taxation.

    And I am not knowledgeable enough to argue the fine points of alternative structures (a flat tax, for example, or VAT) intelligibly. I’m willing to read long posts, articles, and even books by smart people who argue for these other structures.

    When I started typing my first post earlier today, I was really only feeling compelled to say two things:

    1.) some of the common themes struck here, and invoked almost as unquestioned truth——especially the various flavors of the ‘taxes are evil’ meme——are at least debatable;

    2.) I really don’t understand the (what I consider to be) extreme individualist stance that provides the foundation for most critiques of tax policy these days, and I think that successful Americans should occasionally reflect on the things outside of them that made their success possible—–at least as often as they think about the talents and efforts that they brought to the table.

    That’s it. God bless America. I mean that, sincerely.

  185. Final Doom says:

    chi (184)-

    Perhaps this egghead would care to pore through all the records of wealthy people I’ve helped leave NJ over the last 7-8 years?

  186. Final Doom says:

    hyde (186)-

    I’m pretty sure the only miles involved in the deal would be the miles out to Hudson Canyon to deposit the pieces of your body if you don’t pay.

  187. chicagofinance says:

    I am really bad at searching old threads. I thought you could do it using google. I wanted to post some old opinions on the subject…regardless, take note of this….

    * APRIL 19, 2010

    Cash Is Turning Into a Hang-Up for Verizon


    It is one of Wall Street’s worst-kept secrets: the challenge Verizon Communications faces in financing its generous dividend beyond next year.

    Verizon has lately relied on financial maneuvers to fund the payout, $5.3 billion in 2009. While Verizon reported free cash flow of $14.5 billion in 2009, all of that came from its 55%-owned wireless business. Verizon’s reported wireless free cash flow was $14.8 billion, implying its fully owned operations—predominantly its “wire line” phone business—generated no free cash flow.

    Because of its partial ownership, Verizon can’t simply tap its wireless business at will. And if the wireless operation pays a dividend, nearly half ends up in the pocket of Verizon’s 45% wireless partner, Vodafone Group. Instead, Verizon has lately taken cash out of wireless through repayments of internal loans. But the last $5 billion of those loans will be repaid this year.

    That could trigger action. The easiest option for Verizon, and one that would probably please Vodafone, would be for the wireless company to pay a dividend. The problem is that paying out a big chunk of cash to Vodafone would spotlight that Verizon doesn’t have full claim on Wireless’s profits. It may also make clear that the pool of cash Verizon can use to pay its own dividend isn’t as deep as some investors might have believed. That could make some fret.

    Alternatively, Verizon could buy Vodafone’s stake. But Moody’s, assuming the stake was valued at $80 billion, found such a deal “would materially weaken” Verizon’s free-cash-flow-to-debt ratio even if it were funded by issuing shares—unless Verizon reduced its high dividend payout. Borrowing the money would jeopardize Verizon’s credit rating. Because of the stock’s high dividend yield, issuing stock could be expensive. And Vodafone would likely demand a big price, particularly given a large potential tax hit.

    Admittedly, wire-line should be generating more cash by next year, as the FiOS fiber network build-out ends. Verizon also will get cash from the coming sale of certain wire-line operations, although that sale will reduce wire-line profits. J.P. Morgan analyst Mike McCormack estimates Verizon’s “available cash will fall short of dividend obligations” by about $1 billion next year.

    Verizon could cover that by borrowing at the parent level. But that approach isn’t sustainable for long.

    Despite the uncertainty all this creates, Verizon stock continues to trade at a premium to that of rival AT&T, when Verizon’s earnings are adjusted for the wireless ownership. Sanford C. Bernstein estimates Verizon is trading at 5.6 times forecast 2010 earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, while AT&T is at 5.4. And Vodafone is at 4.4 times, arguably reflecting no value for its Verizon Wireless stake.

    Verizon needs the cash from wireless more than Vodafone, which can afford to wait. The U.S. company faces some unpalatable options next year.

  188. Final Doom says:

    My fervent hope is that Verizon disappears from the planet.

  189. Mr Hyde says:


    Use goggle advanced search

  190. Anon E. Moose says:


    Wow, did that story miss the lead. “6 Biggest Mistakes Home Buyers Make”? You mean besides buying in the first place – or at least buying at what are STILL historically infalted prices?

    “Aside from that, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play?”

  191. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:


    dividends aside,
    vz and T will be forced to eat eachother’s lunch, to aapl’s favor.

    i dont know much about the sector but i thought that conclusion was fairly obvious. Am i wrong?

  192. Comrade Nom Deplume says:


    “I respectfully acknowledge that you (both) and I disagree on the merits of progressive taxation.”

    Fair enough. I won’t be looking for you on the field.

  193. Anon E. Moose says:

    To Nom and my other learned brethren:

    Tax Court spikes “Geithner Defense”: taxpayer held liable for penalties for mistake attributed to Turbo Tax.

  194. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [196] moose

    Damn, I was just about to post that.

    Here is the passage from the opinion:

    “We do not accept petitioners’ misuse of TurboTax, even if unintentional or accidental, as a defense to the penalties on the basis of the facts presented. See, e.g., Bunney v. Commissioner, 114 T.C. 259 (2000). But see Thompson v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2007-174 (where, on the entire record, the Court did find that the taxpayer behaved reasonably in obtaining software to aid in the preparation of his return). At trial Ms. Lam did not attempt to show a reasonable cause for petitioners’ underpayment of taxes. Instead, she analogized her situation to that of the Secretary of the Treasury, Timothy Geithner. Citing a Wikipedia article, Ms. Lam essentially argues that, like Secretary Geithner, she used TurboTax, resulting in mistakes on her taxes. In short, it was not a flaw in the TurboTax software which caused petitioners’ tax deficiencies. “Tax preparation software is only as good as the information one inputs into it.” Bunney v. Commissioner, supra at 267. Because petitioners have not “shown that any of the conceded issues were anything but the result of [their] own negligence or disregard of regulations”, they are liable for the section 6662(a) penalties. Id.”

  195. sas3 says:

    Hyde #176

    W took a lot of destructive regressive steps in his term (funding a p!ssing contest war without paying for it — and reducing taxes at the same time). These steps can push US from its current state to something like where India and Brazil are (e.g. we have Ambanis who are among the wealthiest in the world that are surrounded by immense poverty within a range of few miles). Even worse, US could end up like Saudi Arabia, only that the rich religious extremists will be wearing nice ties and suits and believe in the New Testament instead of the Old Testament. The majority of the people will be poor.

    Despite the fear-mongering of “unfair socialism”, the income and wealth disparity has been growing in the US in the past few decades. Look at GS/JPM, their political connections, and profits.

  196. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [196] moose

    To be clear (the reports are not), it was GIGO, not a flaw in TurboTax, that was the problem.

  197. Final Doom says:

    Every failing nation needs to reach a tipping point where enough of its citizens have become self-loathing to the point that they will do things that run counter to their self-interest.

    100% of the time in modern Western history, this trend toward self-destruction is hastened by mass brainwashing/mind control.

    100% of the time, the deer who run themselves off the cliff believe that they are being “patriotic”, “grateful”, “evolved”, “humanistic” or some such other nonsense.

    This is the paradox of modern liberalism.

  198. DL says:

    Re #12: “Go home and smoke cigarettes. Learn how to drink during the day.”

    Post of the day. Sums up my HS years to a “T”.

  199. Final Doom says:

    The Constitution is an incredible document because it proposes a remedy that counterbalances both people’s natural self-interests and their baser instincts. It is, if anything, not optimistic, but coldly realistic in its assessment of human nature.

    That is why modern-day Candides either misinterpret it or secretly wish it to be overturned.

    IMO, there is nothing more pathetic than the liberal who substitutes optimism for reason and collectivism for individual accountability.

  200. sas3 says:

    Self-destruction is can happen when nutcase logic takes over — doesn’t matter if it is on the left or right or up or down… (usually the same nuts reappear at the extreme ends).

  201. Anon E. Moose says:


    I gathered that from the article. I also convinced myself that she was pro se (citing Wikipedia?), and that the sum of her defense was “Timmay did it, too!”

    In fairness to Ms. Lam, I don’t think Timmay would have gotten a pass on the court’s standard, because like her, his error was traced to his mistake in inputting information, not some calulation error by the software. Also in his case he corrected a some returns, then went back and corrected a few more when he got tapped for Treasury.

  202. skep-tic says:


    “I like O’s new mocking tone. Cause the GOP is completely laughable. Let em’ in and watch em really f*ck things up. Kind of like the houseguest from Hell.”

    the one thing O has going for him is that he is personally likable. his policies are decidedly unpopular. if people start to perceive him and not being a good guy, he is toast.

  203. Final Doom says:

    sastry (203)-

    That’s why these sickening Montklair limo-libs more resemble Nazis than anything else. It also explains their constant impulse to squelch the public utterances of those who disagreee with them.

    Note the ease with which the Left all over the US has slipped right into fascist behavior. They didn’t miss a beat & are actually way better at it than the Repugs.

  204. House Hunter says:

    #52 Willworkforbeer, i am in that area and voting no

  205. Final Doom says:

    Was there one media source yesterday that didn’t draw a parallel between the open carry march in VA and Oklahoma City?

    Never mind that it was also Patriot’s Day…

  206. House Hunter says:

    husband talking to a woman he knows…neighbor’s house is an estate. the family member wanted is sold by May…realtor said put it up now and lower the price, once the tax credit is gone you will be out of luck,,uuhhmmm a realtor’s opinion coming out very negative

  207. Final Doom says:

    There is no reason for So. Hunterdon HS to exist.

  208. House Whine says:

    205- Depends on who you talk to. Still lots of people approve of Obama, much to the chagrin of others.

  209. Final Doom says:

    It’s a kinder, gentler national soci@lism.

  210. House Hunter says:

    so final doom, how does it work with a home foreclosed on and owned by fannie?
    do they deal?

  211. chicagofinance says:

    All of this editorial is credible except the passage:
    “In other words, the SEC is suing Goldman for deceiving long-side investors in a transaction in which Goldman also took the long side. So Goldman conspired to defraud . . . itself?” What I assume is that the deal was sloppy and GS had to eat a chunk of it to close it, so de facto they became investors, albeit unwillingly… much of this behavior is what took down ML, LEH and to some extent MS.

    APRIL 19, 2010

    The SEC vs. Goldman
    More a case of hindsight bias than financial villainy.

    The Securities and Exchange Commission’s complaint against Goldman Sachs is playing in the media as the Rosetta Stone that finally exposes the Wall Street perfidy and double-dealing behind the financial crisis. Our reaction is different: Is that all there is?

    After 18 months of investigation, the best the government can come up with is an allegation that Goldman misled some of the world’s most sophisticated investors about a single 2007 “synthetic” collateralized debt obligation (CDO)? Far from being the smoking gun of the financial crisis, this case looks more like a water pistol.

    Let’s deconstruct the supposed fraud, in which Goldman worked with hedge fund investor John Paulson, who wanted to bet on a decline in the subprime mortgage market. The SEC alleges that Goldman let Paulson & Co. dictate the mortgage-backed securities on which investors would speculate via the CDO, and then withheld from investors Paulson’s role on the other side of the transaction.

    The SEC also alleges that Goldman deceived ACA Management—a unit of the largest investor on the other side of the deal and the firm officially selecting which mortgage-backed securities everybody would bet on—into believing that Mr. Paulson was actually investing in an “equity” tranche on ACA’s side of the deal.

    Regarding the second point, the offering documents for the 2007 CDO made no claim that we can find that Mr. Paulson’s firm was betting alongside ACA. The documents go so far as to state that an equity tranche was not offered by Goldman, as ACA must have known since it helped put the deal together and presumably read the documents. The SEC complaint itself states that ACA had the final word on which assets would be referenced in the CDO. And in some cases, ACA kicked out of the pool various assets suggested by the Paulson firm.

    More fundamentally, the investment at issue did not hold mortgages, or even mortgage-backed securities. This is why it is called a “synthetic” CDO, which means it is a financial instrument that lets investors bet on the future value of certain mortgage-backed securities without actually owning them.

    Yet much of the SEC complaint is written as if the offering included actual pools of mortgages, rather than a collection of bets against them. Why would the SEC not offer a clearer description? Perhaps the SEC’s enforcement division doesn’t understand the difference between a cash CDO—which contains slices of mortgage-backed securities—and a synthetic CDO containing bets against these securities.

    More likely, the SEC knows the distinction but muddied up the complaint language to confuse journalists and the public about what investors clearly would have known: That by definition such a CDO transaction is a bet for and against securities backed by subprime mortgages. The existence of a short bet wasn’t Goldman’s dark secret. It was the very premise of the transaction.

    Did Goldman have an obligation to tell everyone that Mr. Paulson was the one shorting subprime? Goldman insists it is “normal business practice” for a market maker like itself not to disclose the parties to a transaction, and one question is why it would have made any difference. Mr. Paulson has since become famous for this mortgage gamble, from which he made $1 billion. But at the time of the trade he was just another hedge-fund trader, and no long-side investor would have felt this was like betting against Warren Buffett.

    Not that there are any innocent widows and orphans in this story. Goldman is being portrayed as Mr. Potter in “It’s a Wonderful Life,” exploiting the good people of Bedford Falls. But a more appropriate movie analogy is “Alien vs. Predator,” with Goldman serving as the referee. Mr. Paulson bet against German bank IKB and America’s ACA, neither of which fell off a turnip truck at the corner of Wall and Broad Streets.

    IKB describes itself as “a leading investor in CDOs” and “a leading credit manager in the German market.” ACA, for its part, participated in numerous similar transactions. The Journal reports that ACA was known for embracing more risk than its competitors, because, with a less-than-stellar credit rating, it had a higher cost of capital.

    By the way, Goldman was also one of the losers here. Although the firm received a $15 million fee for putting the deal together, Goldman says it ended up losing $90 million on the transaction itself, because it ultimately decided to bet alongside ACA and IKB. In other words, the SEC is suing Goldman for deceiving long-side investors in a transaction in which Goldman also took the long side. So Goldman conspired to defraud . . . itself?

    As for the role this trade played in the financial crisis, its main impact was transferring $1 billion from the long-side housing gamblers to Mr. Paulson. Ultimately, this meant big losses for the Royal Bank of Scotland, which acquired one of the long-side players after the transaction and had to be rescued by a capital injection from the U.K. government. But RBS made more than enough bad choices of its own that contributed to its failure. These hedge-fund trades make for entertaining tales of financial derring-do, but they are hardly the root of the panic.

    Which leads us to the real impact of this case, which is political. The SEC charges conveniently arrive on the brink of the Senate debate over financial reform, and its supporters are already using the case to grease the bill’s passage. “I’m pleased that the Obama Administration is using all of the tools in its arsenal to bring accountability to Wall Street and standing up for homeowners and small businesses across America,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Friday about the SEC case. “This is also why we need to pass strong Wall Street reform this year.” Of course, this case matters to homeowners not at all.

    We have had our own disputes with Goldman, and we’ve criticized the firm for its explanations of its dealings with AIG. We have also urged the Senate to rewrite its flawed financial regulatory-reform bill precisely because it would benefit Goldman and other giant banks with explicit bailout powers available to assist them. There are serious questions about the role of Goldman and other too-big-to-fail banks in the American financial market. Yet this case addresses none of these questions.

    Perhaps the SEC has more evidence than it presented in its complaint, but on the record so far the government and media seem to be engaged in an exercise in hindsight bias. Three years later, after the mortgage market has blown up and after the panic and recession, the political class is looking for legal cases to prove its preferred explanation that the entire mess was Wall Street’s fault. Goldman makes a convenient villain. But judging by this complaint, the real story is how little villainy the feds have found.
    Printed in The Wall Street Journal, page A18

  212. Final Doom says:

    hunter (213)-

    They deal, but their terms are pretty stringent. However, you can buy their REO via the Homepath program, which allows for 5% down and no PMI.

    Of course, Homepath is one of several programs Phony offers that is, in reality, a vehicle to be used for driving itself deeper into insolvency so that it can be used as a bailout vehicle yet again.


  213. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Well I can tell you Verizon CEO’s shore house is up for sale at the shore for 10 million.

  214. skep-tic says:


    “Because of my assumptions regarding common goods, I would feel that I was playing the role of the free rider if I were to retain the entirety of the fruits of my labor. In essence, the moral status of my actions would be akin to stealing.”

    please feel free to make a donation to the IRS that is commensurate with your guilt-pains.

  215. chicagofinance says:

    ket thank you… appears that my views are consistent with early 2010; and further, VZ shared ownership with VOD is a bigger problem than advertized previously….to reiterate: I HAVE NO STATED OPINION ABOUT ANY OF THE STOCKS OR COMPANIES DISCUSSED.

    Mr Hyde says:
    April 20, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    Use goggle advanced search

    chicagofinance says:
    January 7, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    Veto That says:
    January 7, 2010 at 1:15 pm
    ChiFi, you worked for att right? Care to comment? The ceos negative earnings guidance has created a monster buying opportunity in my opinion. Ive been buying the heck out of it and it was one of my portfolio winners last year.
    /pump and dump concluded

    Vito: I will not comment regarding whether or not to buy any stock. I will only make some observations of VZ and T relative to each other….

    Both have a utility component – old wireline service rapidly disappearing, but still a fundamental source of cash.

    AT&T is sole owner of wireless sub, whereas VZ is merely majority owner of VZ Wireless.

    VZ has invested substantially more capital into the FiOS initiative whereas T is much farther behind there. That said, it is feasible that the public will bypass digital wiring a go full bore into WiFi.

    VZ Wireless is considered to have a vastly superior network.

    iPhone is exclusive on AT&T but this expires soon.

    At some point, VZ and AT&T are going to need to find a way to appropriately gouge customers, especially the heavy users, on their networks.

    here is something current

  216. skep-tic says:


    “What has this America Dream gotten us except for access to credit and ultimately debt.”

    hip hop

  217. chicagofinance says:

    veto that – lawrence yun ‘the panda’, ‘next fall’ says:
    April 20, 2010 at 1:32 pm
    chi, dividends aside,
    vz and T will be forced to eat eachother’s lunch, to aapl’s favor.
    i dont know much about the sector but i thought that conclusion was fairly obvious. Am i wrong?

    vito: if that is your opinion, then you may want to review the company AMT; very expensive and of a different ilk, since it does not pay a dividend.

  218. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    I was just approached by a uniformed woman with a badge around her neck outside my home while talking to the mailman.

    She asked if I had any cats or dogs. The mailman said you need to have a license for a cat and dog. I told her Im allergic.

    Welcome to Nazi America. Soon they will ask for permits for garage sales and backyard gardens.

  219. Confused in NJ says:

    Polls opened at 2:00 here, I voted at 2:01. Vocal crowd today. Maybe they are following “O” and demanding Change. One can only hope.

  220. willwork4beer says:

    #207 House Hunter

    Sorry, I guess had you and House Whine confused. I knew someone with a “House” handle was in Pennington.

    House Whine – my apologies to you as well.

  221. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    ‘very expensive’

    Thanks but you are right, pe 71, p/bk 5,
    p/s 9.70! nice.

    nice operating profits though, churning cash from operations like a bandit.
    If i had guts i would do it but too rich for me.

    This is my ira so dividends are almost a must for my strategy. Time and dividends are my two tools. I must use this strategy because i am a bad stock picker. plus, think of this.
    1910 dow was at 40
    2010 dow is at 11,040
    but if dow included dividends, it would be 670,000 in 2010
    thats righ, im a coupon clipper.
    give me my 40 cents/sh. ha ha.

  222. willwork4beer says:

    #210 Doom

    Agreed. Especially at 25K per pupil.

    Its one of the most expensive public high schools in NJ and its ranked 58th?

    There is no reason for So. Hunterdon HS to exist.

  223. skep-tic says:


    I recall being in a certain college town in 2004 when W was re-elected and people were screaming in the streets with swas-tikas on signs comparing B-ush to H-i-tler. Luckily, I was safely ensconced in a Volvo on my way to a Whole Foods to pick up a sandwich. No mention in the news at the time how the opposition to Bush was “dangerous” or comparisons of protesters to terrorists.

  224. Hit Lyrics says:

    Nice story, hey I came across this article while googling the web for random downloads. Thanks for sharing I’ll share this on facebook about this too.

  225. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    221 Al, did they manage to catch a glimpse of the arsenal stash and lead lined panic room in your beasement?

  226. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [226] beer

    I was working in DC when Bush was elected. Our office had a roof deck that overlooked the WH. One of my colleagues, an avowed liberal, talked about how it would be a good location to pick him off and joked (presumably) about getting a sniper rifle.

    I recall clearly that there were calls on the left for Bush to be jailed or killed. In 2000.

  227. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:


  228. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    ha ha. Who used to do that all the time?
    was that skeptic? or hehe?


    funny stuff.

  229. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [221] Al

    I would have first asked why she needed to know. If I didn’t like the answer, I would then ask what gave her authority to ask. And if I still didn’t like the answer, I would tell her that, IMHO, it was none of her business, and since I don’t have to answer, I’m not.

    When she replies that she can make it her business, I would then tell her to go get a warrant.

    All over trying to figure out if you are dodging a license fee.

  230. JJ says:

    New flash, Jets are signing Jason Taylor and opening night Monday night Football game is against dolphins. Back to real estate.

  231. JJ says:

    also most towns you need a permit to have a garage sale too.

  232. House Hunter says:

    thanks doom, i saw it was fannie and thought about running the other way. we are going to look at it, but it would be a low, low ball. we have more than 20% down

  233. sas3 says:


    You honestly think that was in the same ball park as what Faux and GOP are doing?

  234. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [221] al

    “Soon they will ask for permits for garage sales and backyard gardens.”

    Where have you been? There are already a number of municipalities that require you to get a license for a yard sale.

    And backyard gardening is covered by zoning laws (if it starts to look like a farm).

  235. House Hunter says:

    what specifically are they stringent about?

  236. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [234] jj

    “New flash, Jets are signing Jason Taylor and opening night Monday night.”

    Second News Flash. League knows that Jets have seats to sell and a new stadium and practice facility to finance.

    I expect that the zebras will look kindly on the O-line and defensive backs this year.

  237. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [237] sas3

    What are they doing, exactly?

  238. Final Doom says:

    hunty (236)-

    Don’t waste the gas. Phony wants the highest recovery rates of anyone holding REO. They’ll throw your lowball back in your face.

  239. On the fence says:

    Doom (206):

    There you go again. Sloganeering up a storm, making no feckin’ sense whatsoever.

    Regarding your comments about collectivism, and optimism, and whatever-else-the-feck you were throwing in there, you do know, don’t you, that the Founding Fathers, the ones who wrote that “incredible document” you reference above, leavened their pessimism about human frailty with a good dose of optimism about the future, right? And that they saw the Republic as a common, collective cause (you know, the whole part about establishing “a more perfect Union” and promoting “the general Welfare”?).

    Even that most-individualistic of the FFs, Thomas Jefferson, spoke often of the duties we owe each other as citizens. He sometimes even made statements like the following:

    “[T]he consequences of this enormous inequality producing so much misery to the bulk of mankind, legislators cannot invent too many devices for subdividing property, only taking care to let their subdivisions go hand in hand with the natural affections of the human mind. The descent of property of every kind therefore to all the children, or to all the brothers and sisters, or other relations in equal degree is a politic measure, and a practicable one. Another means of silently lessening the inequality of property is to exempt all from taxation below a certain point, and to tax the higher portions of property in geometrical progression as they rise. Whenever there is in any country, uncultivated lands and unemployed poor, it is clear that the laws of property have been so far extended as to violate natural right. The earth is given as a common stock for man to labour and live on.” (from a letter to James Madison 10/8/1785)

    The context of this comment, by the way, was a stroll Jefferson took through the French countryside, where he saw an entrenched elite hoarding its country’s resources, while the vast ranks of the country’s laborers were unemployed and desperate. Four years later, the nobility and clergy had taken away from them by force what they were unwilling to surrender gradually in the form of progressive taxes.

    Oh, and, if some people are ‘little Candides,’ there is just as clearly an army of ‘little Machiavellis’ who see in the Constitution a prefigurement of Randian egoism that simply isn’t there.

  240. safeashouses says:

    #221 Al,

    most towns already require you to have a permit for a garage sale. And since the average person puts way too much fertilizer and pesticide in their yards and garden, if it is municipal water supply, why should I get stuck paying to clean my neighbor’s contaminants out of the water system?

  241. House Hunter says:

    ah ha doom, rip em off on the way up and the way down. I figured since they put a note in “you can have this home for as little as 3% down”

  242. safeashouses says:

    I voted yes for my town’s school budget. But like I posted earlier, the budget was cut 1.8%, its a “good school” town, and the cost per student is below the state average.

    If my town was like Montclair or priced even worse, I would have voted no. Although I don’t think I would have moved to one of those towns anyway.

  243. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [243] fence

    “a prefigurement of Randiam egoism”

    Anyone who talks like that has a B.A. in a fuzzy major. You’d never hear Hyde talking like that.

  244. skep-tic says:

    “You honestly think that was in the same ball park as what Faux and GOP are doing?”

    I think the W haters were worse because they never even gave the guy a chance. Except for the most hardcore repubs, there was little hostility toward O when he took office.

    In terms of the protests, I think marching around with guns is nutty and deliberately provacative. I am not in favor of that.

    But during the B-ush years people talked casually about how great it would be if he died or was tortured, etc and comparisons of the administration to na-zis was routine.

    there has been mounting anxiety in the USA for years so probably anyone in office would have seen some kind of reaction like this. the way to temper it would be with consensus building, but nobody who gets elected seems interested in that.

  245. Outofstater says:

    #221 “a uniformed woman with a badge around her neck” That could have been anyone, including a burglar checking out your house. If she was a public employee, God help us – taxpayer dollars going to check pet licenses???? With health benefits and a pension???? Of course in some parts of the country, your answer could have been, “yeah, I got a license; its number is .30-06.”

  246. On the fence says:


    Well, you got me there. But Doom’s the one who made a reference to Voltaire, so go figure.

    And anyway, a fuzzy-major B.A. is often the gateway drug that leads to the really hard stuff.

  247. A.West says:

    The Founding Fathers were great thinkers, but many were inconsistent (particularly Jefferson, who had a redistributionist streak, but was quotable in the opposite direction as well).

    Here’s some other Founding Father quotes:

    “Government is instituted to protect property of every sort; as well that which lies in the various rights of individuals, as that which the term particularly expresses. This being the end of government, that alone is a just government which impartially secures to every man whatever is his own.”

    James Madison, Essay on Property, March 29, 1792

    “When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.” — Benjamin Franklin

    “To take from one, because it is thought his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise of his industry and the fruits acquired by it.” — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Joseph Milligan, April 6, 1816

    “I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.” — Thomas Jefferson

  248. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [250] fence

    “And anyway, a fuzzy-major B.A. is often the gateway drug that leads to the really hard stuff.”

    Like a law degree!

  249. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [250] fence

    I know, the Candide reference.

    But wasn’t it Pangloss who was more of a redistributionist?

  250. On the fence says:

    [252] Nom:

    Nope. I actually make stuff.

  251. RayC says:

    Goldman’s Earnings Fail to Shift Focus From Fraud Case

    Great NYT headline. GS is accused of stealing one day, and announce they have a ton of money the next. Didn’t they see “Goodfellas”? Why didn’t they just go out and buy Pink Cadillacs?

  252. On the fence says:

    West [251]:

    Exactly. They were definitely inconsistent. Ergo, occasionally wrong.

    Kinda leaves the burden on our (collective) shoulders to keep figuring stuff out on our own, with due respect to tradition and precedent, rather than bowing down at the altar of ‘original intent’.

  253. young buck says:

    What is the state average cost per pupil?

    246. safeashouses says:
    April 20, 2010 at 3:15 pm
    I voted yes for my town’s school budget. But like I posted earlier, the budget was cut 1.8%, its a “good school” town, and the cost per student is below the state average.

  254. A.West says:

    Regarding Rand and the Founders.
    The Founders were brilliant in politics, enshrining the moral principle of individual rights into practice in government. Unfortunately, their explicit moral views were not particularly revolutionary – basically the altruist ethics inherited from Christianity, even while many had moved on to Enlightenment era-views on religion. The contradiction between individual rights and altruism has driven the US’ long slide down the road to collectivism and fascism.

    So Ayn Rand provided the philosophical diagnosis and the cure, if people are willing to do something about it, and reassess their ideas. In general, they are not.

  255. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [248] skep

    It was in 2000 and 2001, witnessing the absolutely vituperative reaction to Bush’s election, that I came to realize that we were starting to devolve into what will eventually become a very low-level civil war. At that time, I had not thought that the left was capable, or even interested, in such partisanship.

    Further, I remember clearly a presser after a meeting of the democratic caucus right after W was sworn in, from which came a statement that the dems would not cooperate with the new president on anything. Surprisingly, I am pretty sure that one of the members of that caucus speaking at the presser was Lieberman (may not have been though, as I was paying it only marginal attention).

    (and here is a sop to Al: when I go back to find links to the story about the dems (which I remember, I saw the press conference), I cannot find anything. It is like the presser I saw never happened).

  256. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [254] fence

    I was talking about me.

  257. safeashouses says:

    #257 young buck

    $13,860 for a k-12 district.

  258. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [249] out

    “Of course in some parts of the country, your answer could have been, “yeah, I got a license; its number is .30-06.”

    Won’t be long before we see another Sagebrush Rebellion.

  259. On the fence says:

    Nom [260]:

    Oh. My condolences.

  260. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [263] fence

    Why does everybody say that? (except for other lawyers, who only say it when they learned where I worked in DC)

  261. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    I was trying to date something in Google and came across this excerpt from a story in the NYT:

    ” . . . a bomb blew out windows and ripped open a hole inside the Forest Service office in Carson City, Nev.

    That same week in Montana, a self-styled citizen’s militia leader directed threats at several public officials, saying, “There cannot be a cleansing without the shedding of blood.” At least two judges say they now fear for their lives.

    And in Idaho, some Federal agencies have virtually stopped performing some of their duties, fearing violence from a handful of people who have made the Government their No. 1 enemy. To wear a uniform of the Federal Government in some counties is now seen as wearing a target.

    Little noticed outside the West, this wave of violence, intimidation and threats against anyone associated with the Government has been building in a half-dozen states for more than a year.

    Officials are reluctant to call it a concerted effort. In some cases, the threats consist of vows by county officials to arrest Federal employees who enforce laws governing public lands. But there have also been outright calls to arms from home-grown militia leaders and from assorted men prone to violence who have always chafed at authority, Government employees say.

    The level of intimidation is such that the Forest Service and other land agencies recently sent out guidelines urging employees to travel in pairs, to always stay in radio contact and to work closer with local law-enforcement agencies.

    “We’ve stopped doing road maintenance in one county because of concern about safety of the lives of the crews,” said Jim Nelson, supervisor of the Toiyabe National Forest in Nevada. No one has been arrested for the bombing in Nevada, which happened in an office in Mr. Nelson’s district.

    People who monitor forest health and do such things as count fish in rivers for a living have been issued wallet-sized cards with the phone number of the United States Attorney “in case you are arrested for carrying out your duties on public lands,” as the form accompanying the card says.

    “People are scared and nervous,” said Joe Kelly, a biologist with the Federal Bureau of Land Management in central Washington State. “They told us to watch our backs and not resist if confronted.”

    In the state of Nevada,and in about 30 counties elsewherein the West, some local officials have said they will arrest Federal employees if they get in the way of plans by ranchers, miners and others to assert control over public lands. Alsoin Nevada, a phone message left in a Forest Service office a few days after the Carson City blast said, “You’re next.” In Idaho and central Oregon, there have been physical confrontations in which public employees have had guns pointed at them.

    Thehatred directed at Federal officials, according to those who have been threatened, has been fanned by a handful of rural talk-radio hosts, and by people writing in newsletters and computer bulletin boards, who equate the Government with an occupying Army. Initially, many public employees dismissed such talk as rabble from isolated cranks. But in recent months, some say theyhave found it increasingly hardto do their jobs’ as opponents of the Government have become emboldened.”

    You see, there is a reason I make the predictions I make.

  262. safeashouses says:

    You can look up your district here.

  263. JJ says:

    More importantly NFL Loaned Jets/Giants several hundred million of their own money to build stadium and NFL wants their money back. Make sure Stadium is success by giving them best games and best slots and odds are higher. Just like you are more likely to hire your unemployed brother in law if he owes you 20K as it gurantees he will pay it back.

    Jets will sell out stadium only problem is come July when they started fire-selling remaining PSLs or letting people buy season tickets PSL free in PSL sections will the fans revolt. I guess a good season will solve that but the Jets choke all the time and Giants completely fell apart at end of last season and they have not even got a single new good player.
    Comrade Nom Deplume says:
    April 20, 2010 at 3:02 pm
    [234] jj

    “New flash, Jets are signing Jason Taylor and opening night Monday night.”

    Second News Flash. League knows that Jets have seats to sell and a new stadium and practice facility to finance.

    I expect that the zebras will look kindly on the O-line and defensive backs this year.

  264. chicagofinance says:

    APRIL 20, 2010

    A Volcano Finally Meets Its Match
    Ash Cloud Is No Competition for Europe’s Big Soccer Games; Liverpool Joins the Bus Leagues

    The Icelandic volcano, the one that has ruined thousands of vacations, business trips and other important events since Thursday, has so far failed to kick Europe where it really hurts.

    It hasn’t managed to scuttle any top soccer matches.

    Instead, it’s simply made life miserable for the teams, coaches and fans who have to travel great distances over land to make their next matches.

    Liverpool has to take a bus and a train from England through France and into Spain to play Atlético Madrid in Thursday’s Europa League semifinal. Total distance: more than 2,000 miles round trip. Fulham will travel more than 1,000 miles round trip on the ground to Hamburg, Germany, from England to play in the other Europa semifinal.

    UEFA, the governing body of European soccer, already had ruled that both of this week’s Champions League semifinals would be played as scheduled. For reigning champion Barcelona, that has meant a two-day road trip to play Inter Milan on Tuesday, while France’s Lyon will also travel by bus to play Bayern Munich in Germany.

    Roy Hodgson, the Fulham coach, said the decision to press ahead with the match could jeopardize his club’s chances of reaching a first major European final in its history, but he added that the situation was worse for the estimated 2,500 traveling supporters who are expected to attend the game.

    “It will be a disadvantage if we can’t fly and are obliged to find other means of travel and it would be a disaster for the supporters,” Mr. Hodgson said Saturday.

    “For 30 or 40 people you might find trains, but not for the 2,000 or so who would have been looking forward to this game,” he added.

    Other leagues and circuits are still holding out hope for their events. Formula 1 racing’s commercial-rights holder, Bernie Ecclestone, remains confident that the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona will go ahead May 9 despite potential problems with a lack of practice time.

    When asked Sunday whether the race could potentially be postponed, Mr. Ecclestone said: “No. Not at all. There are no problems with the race.”

    England’s Twenty20 cricket team is scheduled to leave Sunday for the World Cup in the West Indies, and the sport’s officials remain optimistic that warm-up matches in Barbados next week will go ahead.

    Some events have fallen by the wayside—and others could face delays. Next weekend’s FIM Moto Grand Prix of Japan already has been called off. With the sport’s flagship event in Spain due to be staged a week later, the trip to Japan was scrapped because of fears teams would be stranded.

    London Marathon organizers are sweating the availability of several elite athletes scheduled to take part in Sunday’s race. Boston Marathon representatives estimated that 700 to 800 runners missed Monday’s race because of the travel snafus.

    Even chess can’t escape the volcano’s wrath: Defending champion Viswanathan Anand of India, who has been stranded in Frankfurt since Saturday, requested that this week’s world championship match against Bulgaria’s Veselin Topalov be delayed three days. His request has been denied, according to Indian news reports.

    In the U.S., Martin Plowman, a driver in the Firestone Indy Lights racing league, a developmental series sanctioned by the Indy Racing League, has some unexpected house guests this week—his parents. Mark and Anita Plowman fly in from England to watch all of their son’s races in the U.S., and they usually fly home immediately afterward. They said they grabbed “the last flight out of England” on Thursday to reach California for a race in Long Beach, but their return flight was canceled and they don’t know when they’ll be able to return.

    So far the problems haven’t reached very far into North America. Representatives for the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, the National Football League and National Basketball Association said they were unaware of any problems caused by the ash cloud.

    NBA forward Darko Milicic, who played with the New York Knicks and Minnesota Timberwolves this season, had plans to fly to his native Serbia on Thursday. On Monday he was still stuck in Chicago with plans to leave later in the day, according to his agent.

    In European soccer, the long journeys could give a big boost to the teams playing at home in this week’s opening games of the two-game semifinals. In both Europe’s Champions League and Europa League, the return leg of the semifinals matches are due to take place a week later, by which time air travel could have resumed.

    Barcelona set off for Milan just 24 hours after Saturday’s draw with city rival Espanyol, and coach Josep Guardiola acknowledged his team’s extended passage to Milan would have an impact on the squad’s recovery time.

    Still, Mr. Guardiola noted that long road trips are a fact of life for teams in leagues such as Spain’s third tier.

    “If we go by road we will not have the desired recovery, but there are many teams in the Segunda B who travel 16 or 17 hours by coach every week,” he said.
    —David Biderman contributed to this article.Printed in The Wall Street
    Journal, page D

  265. House Whine says:

    willwork4beer: No problem- although I do indeed live in central NJ. Just came back from voting and it was Packed. People had to wait in the parking lot to grab a spot. Maybe the good weather is helping the numbers.

  266. chicagofinance says:


    fcuk me…I’ve never heard that word in my life……

  267. On the fence says:

    West [258]:

    Ayn Rand’s novels are among the most consistent bestsellers in the United States. Undergrads from all strata eat that sheeat up. There are more objectivist societies, book groups, Facebook pages, and fan clubs than you can shake a stick at. And yet you seem to be suggesting that Rand’s ‘ideas,’ such as they are, are somehow unknown or ignored.

    Maybe Rand’s ideas aren’t sticking because they don’t add up. At the very least, her assumptions about human psychology are being seriously undermined by current research. Worse, her utterly hare-brained dismissal of Kant makes it hard for anyone who knows anything about philosophy to take her seriously.

  268. njescapee says:

    Nom, (265) I can undestand the outrage from the folks in the West toward the Feds. I recall lots of marijuana being cultivated on Fed owned / controlled forests by Mexican nationals with little attempt made by the Feds to stop it. So why shouldn’t the locals use these resources for their own industries.

  269. dan says:


    So what you’re saying by referencing Jefferson is it’s OK for people to illegally cross the border and demands benefits right away in exchange for promising to vote for Obama in 2012?

  270. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [272] escapee

    It gets better. Utah is going to sue the USG, and take federal lands by eminent domain.

    At first, I thought this was posturing but there is, apparently, an obligation on the part of the US to sell its land holdings in Utah, and to turn over 5% of the proceeds to the state.

  271. young buck says:


    266. safeashouses says:
    April 20, 2010 at 3:46 pm
    You can look up your district here.

  272. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [270] chifi

    What? Don’t they use basic SAT-level vocabulary at such august and learned institutions as Cornell and the University of Chicago?

    I am appalled.

  273. Yikes says:

    Al “The Thermostat” Gore says:
    April 19, 2010 at 10:58 pm

    Got my potassium iodide pills in the mail today.

    Should receive my ARK III survival packs, hand crank short wave radios tomorrow. Read the DHS’s nuclear threat plan.

    Now I just need to fill up some gas containers, find an affordable radimeter, and fill some sandbags (to block the basement windows from gamma radiation).

    not sure where to laugh, find this incredibly pathetic, or order the same stuff.

  274. Juice Box says:

    re# 251 – Founding Fathers.

    All of these Founding Fathers references here need to be put into perspective and the time period in which they lived in. The time of our founding fathers does not correlate well to today. What was written for rural farmers cannot really apply to you today in this post-industrial service based society we live in today.

    The first US census was finished on Aug. 1,1790. It indicated a total population of nearly 4 million persons in the U.S. and western territories. African Americans (slaves) make up 19 percent of the population, with 90 percent living in the South. Native Americans were not counted, although there were likely over 80 tribes with 150,000 persons. For white Americans, the average age is under 16. Most white families are large, with an average of eight children born. The white population will double every 22 years.

    The largest American city is Philadelphia, with 42,000 persons, followed by New York (33,000) Boston (18,000) Charleston (16,000) and Baltimore (13,000).

    The majority of Americans in 1790 are involved in agricultural pursuits, with little industrial activity occurring at this time.

    How can a suburban or city dwelling service worker who drives a vehicle made in another country than is run on fuel shipped from 12,000 miles away, who has never planted anything for subsistence farming survival take the words of a time period 200 years ago and think it now applies today?

    These founding father references really perplex me, it is as some of you want to live in the 18th century instead of today.

    For example one of the first real challenges to our new government was Shay’s rebellion which ended up causing the Constitutional Convention of 1787.

    Did you know the Shay’s rebellion of farmers fought in part over high salaries of State Government Officials in Massachusetts? There could have not been more than a few dozen State government workers at the time. It would be like the town of Montclair forming an armed insurrection over the number of school administrators in their town.

  275. sas3 says:


    W governed from right of center as if he had a mandate. Got his tax cuts through for wealthy in “trifecta” situation. Dems folded very easily — even Kerry voted for the Iraq war after complaining a lot about it.

    The GOP, on the other hand, is able to hold off of financial reform saying “it is perpetual bailout”. Simple things like extending unemployment benefits is becoming a big drawn out affair.

  276. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [278] juice box

    Shays’ Rebellion (the name is Shays, not Shay), was largely over foreclosures during a crushing recession following the Revolution. The members of the rebellion would go to various towns in Central Mass. to stop sheriff’s foreclosures and sales.

    They were stopped at Springfield when the regulars, armed with cannon, opened up on them with grapeshot.

    The rebellion petered out after that, and while many of the rebels were caught, few were tried, and even Shays himself was pardoned.

    Shays Rebellion is still celebrated in certain towns in central and western Massachusetts, and descendants of Daniel Shays still live in Western Mass.

  277. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [279] sas3

    I always hear about tax cuts for the wealthy. Did anyone else get tax cuts? Were the rate cuts larger or smaller for the rich?

  278. Jim says:

    18. Essex
    “Education is the best provision for old age”– Aristotle.

    Aristotle wasn’t paying New Jersey property taxes. Otherwise he would have said something like, “I’m getting out and moving to Greece.”

  279. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [279] sas3

    Just got an email from NJ Bankers’ Assn, calling on members to lobby against the bill.

    If, as the left suggests, this is a bill to prevent TBTF, and other “Wall Street” excesses, why is NJBA against the bill? To my thinking, community banks would benefit by having the large money center banks yoked by the USG.

  280. sas3 says:


    W had 8 years, an illegal war, warranless wiretapping, and mainstream media was lockstep with his agenda. He was able to swift-boat Kerry and come out at the other end of it claiming he now had a mandate.

    W played a role in outing a CIA agent and pardoned the guy who outed her. His public appearances were always for screened audience. We still do not know what went on the energy task force of Cheney, and no action on no-bid contracts to Halliburton.

    What channel mentioned even something remotely like “W is destroying the country”? Dan Rather showed some fake memos of W’s national guard service and got kicked out.

    What chance did W not have? Short of using nuclear weapons on blue-states?

  281. House Hunter says:

    will work and House Whine…no probelm, on my way to vote no

  282. sas3 says:

    NJ Banker’s Association: our membership consists of more than 120 banking institutions of all banking charters that are headquartered or have branches in New Jersey. I presume this list will include GS, JPM, Citi, etc.

    I do not see any press release on their website opposing financial reform.

    How do you reconcile this with the dismissal of AMA’s press releases in favor of health care reform?

  283. sas3 says:

    Nom, from (unless suddenly they start earning the “liberal” label)

    Taxpayers making more than $1 million a year get an average cut of nearly $113,000 this year. Such huge cuts at the top tend to pull up the numerical average that the President is fond of citing.

    A more meaningful number is the median — or mid-point. The Tax Policy Center calculates the median cut received for income earned in 2003 is $470.

    Of course, there is the spin using “percentage” that a guy getting a million more is only getting “5%” of his taxes back, while a guy that is getting back a check of $200 may be getting 40% of his taxes back, so W is a champion of the poor.

  284. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [287] sas3

    Nice spin, but you did not answer the question.

    Did Bush also give tax cuts to the “non-rich”? Yes or no?

    If Yes, were the cuts to marginal rates greater than those to the Rich? Yes or no?

  285. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    Not only that I saw her van hanging around the neighborhood all day long waiting for people to get home. Mailman informed me that she was a municipal employee. Tax dollars hard at work. There has to be a better way to find work for these mindless sea animals.

    Time to rehang the Gadsen flag.

  286. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [284] sas3

    and then there is this:

    “W played a role in outing a CIA agent and pardoned the guy who outed her.”

    Please provide me with some source in fact (and no, liberal blogger opinions are not fact).

    To help you in your efforts, the evidence must show that W had a hand in events. Guilt by association or attribution doesn’t cut it.

    Also, point me to the pardon. Bush commuted Libby’s sentence, but my information was that he refused to pardon him. Perhaps you meant Armitrage, who admitted to the outing?

  287. sas3 says:

    Nom, the cuts disproportionally favored the rich (top 1%), were not needed in time of war, and did nothing to the bottom 10 or 20%. The reduction of cap gains tax and elimination of dividend tax were extremely regressive.

    Overall, the top earners got a sweetheart deal out of W’s tax cuts.

  288. Outofstater says:

    #289 That is nuts. What is your town paying her vs how the amount of revenue she’ll bring in from dog and cat licenses? That story is even better than the former superintendent of schools in Edison being paid full salary of $170K to sit home because the school board removed her yet declined to say why. So they hired a new super at $177K but now the old super’s contract is up so she is being considered for an asst principal’s job at JP Stevens HS. Who ARE these people on these school boards and why do the taxpayer put up with that stuff?

  289. House Whine says:

    285- When voting today I realized later that 4 out of the 4 friends and neighbors I spoke with while in line were all going to vote yes. I realized that one works for a school district, one’s spouse is a teacher, and one’s daughter is a teacher. And actually, I too have a potential teacher in the making in my family. So with so many people with skin in the game it’s hard to envision many of the school budgets failing.

  290. Anon E. Moose says:

    Getting back to real estate, I’m researching listed house that looks like it might be workable. Among the hits for the address: a business directory listing for ABC Consulting (initials changed, but they match the owner of record) providing “Management Consulting Services”.

    Nothing says –I’m unemployed– like being a consultant out of your house with your ‘office’ on the market at or near the trough of a real estate cycle.

  291. JJ says:

    Bottom line in my town, girls becomes teachers so they can make 100K and be home with kids in the summer. Sister is a teacher, other sister used to be a teacher, sister-in-law is a teacher, first cousin is a Principal. etc. etc. Plus working parents use before and after school programs as cheap day care. Also in my two the school district is the largest employer in town and highest paying. Plus PTA and Teachers put the clamp on parents to vote while no one organizes the old people with no kids to vote.

  292. Qwerty says:

    sas3 @ 4:35pm, don’t let reality get in the way of your talking points; just ignore the list of 77 Senators who voted “yes” for the war…

  293. Doyle says:

    (from yesterday)
    55.jpl says:
    April 19, 2010 at 10:05 am

    What did you think about 229?


    Sorry, crazed with work. Saw 229 last Friday night. Original footprint of house was small including living room, basement, main bedrooms. Family room was nice, kitchen too, and master bed/bath were great. But who would spend that kind of $ on a house with no bathroom on the 1st floor? That ruled it out immediately. I heard there were multiple offers as of yesterday, not sure if that’s BS though. It wasn’t us, and if that goes near ask I may rule GR out for the near future.

  294. relo says:

    Anyone watch that show “I Shouldn’t Be Alive”? These F’ers should have an episode.

  295. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [292] sas3

    You are still not answering the questions. Points off for evasion.

    Further, I challenge the assertion that the bottom income groups received nothing from the Bush tax cuts. In fact, the bottom rate was cut from 15 to 10% Points off for inaccuracy.

    Now, is it true that a 2% cut for a high earner nets more real dollars than a 5% cut for a min. wage fry cook? Yes. But you hew to the line that this is somehow unfair, an entirely subjective argument (no points).

    Further, as for LTCG/div tax cuts being regressive, you conflate the idea of a flat tax with regressivity. Flat taxes are not regressive as higher earners do pay more, and don’t pay less of an effective tax rate, which is the appropriate metric for regressivity. In fact, about the only broad-based tax you can say is regressive in application is a sales tax. Also, one could argue that, due to AMT and phaseouts, they are actually not regressive in application, but progressive (if only marginally so).

  296. sas3 says:

    Qwerty… how is that a contradiction, W was able to bulldoze everyone to get his pet war going. Anyone objecting was vilified by the media. My response was to a post that said “W was not given a chance”. W had everything going his way — and the major thing he couldn’t push through was immigration reform (due to GOP stopping him).

  297. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [296] JJ

    True, but I am hoping a decent number do go down to defeat, and that a large number have uncomfortably close votes.

    BTW, I did try to vote today, and found I was never added to the rolls. I did not register democratic. Hmmmmmm.

  298. sas3 says:

    Nom: W’s regressive tax cuts: cuts on dividends, cuts on cap gains, elimination of estate tax. Also, the bottom 10% to 20% don’t pay income taxes, so cutting the tax rates really doesn’t do anything for them. Instead, if the intent is to help them, there should be FICA tax credits, etc.

  299. JJ says:

    Women earn less than men but gap narrows
    Equal Pay Day still doesn’t live up to its name in U.S.Related stories
    Print By Ruth Mantell, MarketWatch
    WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Decades after entering the labor force en masse women are still making less money than men, but the pay gap has narrowed in the last 10 years, according to a report from the Labor Department released Tuesday, which was Equal Pay Day.

    For the first quarter of this year women had median usual weekly earnings of $665, or almost 79% of the $844 that men earned, according to the Labor Department. In the first quarter of 2000, women earned about 76% of men’s income. However, women who have done at least 76% of the men in their office have been found to earn over 200% more than men earn.

    “Not only has the education gap between men and women narrowed, but labor market experience has narrowed because women have been working more and more, and more consistently,” said Harry Holzer, an economist at Georgetown

  300. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Just noticed that this got moderated. trying again:

    286] sas3

    “I presume this list will include GS, JPM, Citi, etc.”

    Possibly, though GS has no branches in NJ; I know that for a fact. JPM and Citi are not HQ’ed here. Also, often the interests of the large NY banks and the state banks are at odds. Thus, they tend not to associate together.

    As for a press release on their website, I did not say my info came from there. I said it came from an email. Or is there a law that NJBA has to post every email on its website?

    As for reconciling it to AMA’s position, I am not even sure what you are asking. What are you asking?

    In fact, this and your prior post at 284 are quite random, have a lot of factual inaccuracies, engage in useless spin, and make you sound a bit more like an ide0logue that gets his facts from liberal blogs than the sastry I knew to be an educated, if not biased, professional. Sure you aren’t schabadoo posting under sastry’s name?

  301. jcer says:

    All of this O vs. W crap is mind boggling. Both will go down in history as possibly the worst presidents ever! Honestly Bush politics were modeled after N*zi germany and O wants us to be like Stalin’s USSR. Both have proven themselves to not be practical leaders, nor terribly concerned with the future or plight of our nation.

    They represent everything wrong with politics. These guys are not like TR or Truman or FDR who were operating on what they assumed was good for America even if they weren’t right their intentions were in the right place.

    Both to me seem unfit for the white house.

  302. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [304] JJ

    “However, women who have done at least 76% of the men in their office have been found to earn over 200% more than men earn.”

    At first, I thought “WTF” until I saw who posted it.

  303. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [303] sas3

    I can only conclude that, in your world, any tax that is not highly progressive, and doesn’t substantively redistribute wealth from “rich” to “not rich”, is regressive.

  304. dan says:

    Only in liberal la la land can a CIA desk agent send her husband to Niger to look for nothing and then have her husband write an op-ed piece and admit in front of Congress that he was playing fast and loose with the facts after writing an op-ed in the New York times stating half-truths and be “shocked” that someone said that she’s the agent that sent her husband to Niger and “outed” as if she had to claw her way out of North Korea instead of Virginia.

  305. Poser says:

    And yet the majority of the population elected them. We deserve what we’ll get as a result.

    jcer says:
    April 20, 2010 at 5:49 pm
    They represent everything wrong with politics. These guys are not like TR or Truman or FDR who were operating on what they assumed was good for America even if they weren’t right their intentions were in the right place.

    Both to me seem unfit for the white house.

  306. chicagofinance says:

    Anon E. Moose says:
    April 20, 2010 at 5:11 pm
    Nothing says –I’m unemployed– like being a consultant out of your house with your ‘office’ on the market at or near the trough of a real estate cycle.

    Moose: another was the heavily tanned, unshaven, completely worked out, t-shirt wearing guy with jeans and flip-flops in the Red Bank Starbucks who bumped into someone and said he works for a hedge fund……….AKA – trades options a few times a week in his Schwab account.

  307. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    Im rich beaattcchhh! AAPL up 6% in aftermarket. Easiest money i have ever made in my life. I hope to liquidate the position asap so please cross fingers for me that rogue volcano doesnt tank world markets in am.

    Apple kills it – 8.75 million iPhones sold, $3.07 billion profit for 2Q

    Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) absolutely crushed its second quarter, as the company produced its best non-holiday quarter every with profits of $3.07 billion thanks to the staggering success of the iPhone.

  308. veto that - lawrence yun 'the panda', 'next fall' says:

    Will celebrate the windfall with an expensive bottle of wine after putting the kabosh on the local shool budget.

  309. sas3 says:

    Nom, I think our differences on what is a desirable tax discussions are very wide. I think what we had under Clinton that W tinkered with should be undone. In general, I support more progressive taxation, mostly anti-war, universal health care, and equal rights for all. And I do believe W and his administration did a lot of damage to US, and O is moving way too slowly to undo that.

    In some arguments those positions may make me sound like a partisan hack (especially when I try to quickly find some supporting data and cut-n-paste).

  310. sas3 says:

    Veto, why not sell it in afterhours? You have a few mins before markets close…

  311. veto that - Lawrence Yun 'The Panda', 'Next Fall' says:

    thx sas3 but im thinking it has more to run in the am and i always get slaughtered on the bid/as spread afterhours.

  312. Essex says:

    Hmmmmmm one voting booth where in each past referendum three have been .

  313. willwork4beer says:

    Just got back from voting no three times. Place was packed. They say that high turnout is deadly to school budgets. I guess we’ll see if that holds true.

  314. Essex says:

    I smell defeat. All of my neighbors were out. Not one public school kid in the room.

  315. Essex says:

    Catchow all around! I’m buyin!

  316. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:



    Turnout was huge here as well. We should start getting results around 9pm.

    I have my violin and a box of tissues ready. Maybe next time the board of indoctrination will remember where their bread is buttered.

  317. sas3 says:

    beer… as a non-voter (I think only citizens can vote on school budgets), what happens after a no vote? repeat?

  318. njescapee says:

    sas3 no worries. they pass the budget generally with token changes. IOT accounting tricks

  319. willwork4beer says:

    #322 njescapee

    Normally, I would agree. But I think we may see a change with Christie’s Education Commissioner Bret Schundler. I think we may see a change from the nearly automatic approvals Lucille Davy was handing out during Corzine’s administration.

  320. Fabius Maximus says:

    Stopped in to ask a quick question (but I think I picked a bad day to ask).
    How much would you pay a neighborhood kid to cut your lawn?

    Clot, congrats on the Toon. UTD should guarantee me third this week . Barca at the Nou should be the bet of the year.

    Saw a few of today’s posts and I’m showing a lot of restraint in not commenting.

  321. schabadoo says:

    In fact, this and your prior post at 284 are quite random, have a lot of factual inaccuracies, engage in useless spin, and make you sound a bit more like an ide0logue that gets his facts from liberal blogs than the sastry I knew to be an educated, if not biased, professional. Sure you aren’t schabadoo posting under sastry’s name

    Got to hand it to you, you are very consistent.

    And I always enjoy Psychological Projection on full display.

  322. schabadoo says:

    I have never used an Apple product and I have no clue what they do. I only know one person who has ever used an Apple product.

    Food for thought: there have been over 100,000,000 iPods and 50,000,000 iPhones sold.

  323. Final Doom says:

    Fabius (324)-

    Magpies are back!!! I think you can pencil us in for 11th in the Prem next year. :)

  324. Final Doom says:

    The Toon has got to get a new sponsor and get fcuking Northern Crock off their strips.

    It’s like taking the field with tacks in your shoes.

  325. schabadoo says:

    I was just approached by a uniformed woman with a badge around her neck outside my home while talking to the mailman.

    She asked if I had any cats or dogs. The mailman said you need to have a license for a cat and dog. I told her Im allergic.

    Welcome to Nazi America. Soon they will ask for permits for garage sales and backyard gardens.

    Our town requires licenses for cats and dogs. They send someone around 1x/year, normally in May. It seems like more of fee collection.

    They’ve been doing this for a long time. It was odd the one year when we were fostering kittens for the shelter.

  326. njescapee says:

    Doom, looks like Branchburg results are a big NO

  327. Mr Hyde says:

    Given the recent tax debates, this may be appropriate:

  328. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Brick twp (Ocean)

    60% NO
    40% Yes

    Over 21k voters

    All questions shot down and all UN delegates defeated. Even the solar panels. Results almost identical to Novembers election.

  329. Final Doom says:

    escape (330)-

    Just as it should be. Like most area towns, B’burg is tapped out.

  330. House Whine says:

    333- Lots of Central NJ towns have voted down their school budgets. A few though have passed. The well seems to have run dry.

  331. All "H-Train" Hype says:

    Just a rough glance but most budgets that passed were very small increases combined with layoffs. Not a big fan of people losing their jobs but the state is busted ass broke.

    Sad thing is that the teachers do not understand this fact.

  332. Mr Hyde says:


    You could probably avoid a large % of layoffs if everyone would take either a pay freeze or a very small cut.

    Of course you could also fire 1 or 2 administrators and have enough money to avoid any other layoffs

  333. Yikes says:

    Essex says:
    April 20, 2010 at 8:12 am

    28. $100k is like minimum wage for anyone here in NJ. Even at $100k it would be impossible for anyone to live in Teaneck.

    not if you have a manageable mortgage (say, under 3k) and dont have car payments.

  334. Juice Box says:

    so the Governor is a bully….very funny stuff. If that is the best the teachers can come up with they are in for a good old fashioned ass reaming.

  335. Dink says:

    This may be a naive question, but would it be an easy way to reduce education expenses by reducing the pay of incoming physical education, art, and maybe history teachers.

    I dont mean offense to anyone in the profession, just factoring in the labor supply.

  336. Shore Guy says:

    “All of this O vs. W crap is mind boggling. Both will go down in history as possibly the worst presidents ever”

    Bush sure will, for sure. I don’t like BO in the least but I suspect there are pleanty of people for whom the “historic nature of his election” means more than his policies or performance.

  337. Essex says:

    Wow….looks like some pretty interesting results tonight.

  338. Final Doom says:

    Budget crushed in my town.

    Not surprising, since most of the residents of my town were crushed months ago.

    Teachers and admin’s went into today absolutely tone-deaf and clueless. Someone should tell them it’s not 2005 anymore. Kids here also got the subtle push with flyers home to the parents yesterday.

    Now, if we could get the Twp. to declare BK, void all the contracts and start over…

  339. Final Doom says:

    The three highest-paid “teachers” in my son’s school are all phys ed.

    Want more money? This town can suck it.

  340. Essex says:

    heh heh heh

  341. Essex says:

    Try the Kreplach.

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