1991 all over again

Homework for the weekend, compare and contrast the market in 1991 and the market in 2010.

From the NY Times:

Jersey’s ‘Gold Coast’ Losing Its Glitter
Published: March 24, 1991

THE New Jersey shore of the Hudson River, which emerged in the mid-80’s as a powerful new magnet for high-rise office development, is struggling with high vacancy rates, canceled projects and nagging doubts about the capacity of its roads, parking and public transportation.

No area better symbolized the 80’s real estate boom in the New York region. An 18-mile corridor of gritty piers, derelict warehouses and abandoned railroad yards, the New Jersey riverfront became a patchwork of huge development sites.

It also became the focus of a feisty battle for New York City tenants and the centerpiece of an urban renaissance so sweeping that some began calling the area the “Gold Coast” of New Jersey.

For now, the renaissance has slowed. With 15 million square feet of space — more than half of it built in the last five years — developers on the New Jersey shore are beset by the highest vacancy rates in the New York area.

One troubled residential project is Port Liberte, a development that may ultimately include 1,690 town houses and apartments on a series of shorefront canals in Jersey City, just west of the Statue of Liberty. With only 300 of the homes completed, the project’s developer, Paul W. Bucha, president of Port Liberte Partners of Jersey City, ran into severe financial trouble in 1989 and stopped building. One of his major lenders, CityFed Financial Corporation of Somerset, N.J., attributed a loss of $52.7 million to its bad loans to Port Liberte, and its assets were later seized by Federal regulators.

Now, despite widespread reports that Asian investors stand ready to take over the Port Liberte project, its fate is in the hands of the Resolution Trust Corporation, the Federal agency charged with rescuing the nation’s failed thrift institutions.

From the NY Times:

Less Luster on the ‘Gold Coast’
Published: October 29, 2010

IN Hudson County, the once-shining Camelot of New Jersey’s housing market, condominiums are still king. In every month so far this year, 5 to 10 times as many condos as single-family houses were sold.

But that is not to say the picture is shiny for the Gold Coast in general, or condos in particular.

In fact, as of Oct. 1, there was a 15-month inventory of unsold condominiums, just as there was for single-family houses, according to an analysis of sales statistics done by the Otteau Valuation Group of New Brunswick. Translation: If no more units were listed for sale, it would take 15 months to sell those already listed, at the current sales pace.

A six-month inventory is what real estate professionals consider healthy.

In Hoboken the inventory was just over nine months. In Jersey City it had swelled to 17.6 months. In specific Jersey City neighborhoods, the situation varied: a 13-month inventory downtown, where more than 400 condos are for sale; 42 months (three and a half years) for Journal Square, where 200 apartments are listed and sales are very sparse.

Elsewhere, in three communities where the massive Port Imperial development is ensconced along the riverfront — Weehawken, West New York and Guttenberg — inventory levels ranged from 19 months to 2 years.

Inventories grew despite widespread cuts in price for both new construction and resales, as any home shopper might glean from all the “reduced” notices on Web sites.

One of the Jersey City market’s big problems is that new projects keep opening there all the time. There were hundreds of units under construction three years ago as the housing market crumpled. Developers found ways to finish the work, but found the appetite for condos had been sated. Total sales did increase this year, but inventory levels increased much more.

In Hoboken, where sales have been flat since midsummer, newer buildings are still offering buyers a free period on service contracts. Some, like the Hudson Teacomplex, have added to the array of services — for instance, custom renovations — offered when a unit turns over.

At older buildings, and those a few blocks farther from the waterfront, price reductions are still considerable. An 830-square-foot renovated corner unit on First Street with a large deck was listed at $449,000 in June, reduced in August, and reduced further in October, to $408,000.

A somewhat larger loft unit on Newark Street, also renovated, with one and a half baths and a private roof deck, sold for $320,000 in 2003 and was offered for $510,000 last spring. In October the price was cut to $455,000.

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

89 Responses to 1991 all over again

  1. grim says:

    From the Daily Record:

    Economist sees slow growth ahead for NJ

    Signs of life flicker through the New Jersey economy, but factors such as the lack of a larger manufacturing base and the relative maturity of the economy will moderate near-term growth.

    O’Keefe said New Jersey’s gross domestic product was $474.9 billion in 2008, but only 10 percent of that was from manufacturing while 76.5 percent was generated by services. That meant that while the U.S. economic resurgence since 2008 was driven in part by a growth in manufacturing activity, New Jersey couldn’t match that growth, he said.

    A concern, he said, is that New Jersey has a mature economy driven by established businesses. That protects the state from sharp downturns but also slows recovery, he said.

  2. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Number of the Week: 107 Months to Clear Banks’ Housing Backlog

    107: How many months it would take to sell banks’ current and shadow inventory of foreclosed homes.

    Banks’ vast pile of foreclosed homes doesn’t appear to be diminishing. That’s a troubling sign for the future of the housing market.

    Back in April, this column tallied up all the foreclosed homes sitting in banks’ inventory, as well as the “shadow” inventory of homes in the foreclosure process or on which owners had missed at least two mortgage payments. At the time, we reported that at the current rate of sales, it would take 103 months to unload it all.

    Over the past six months, that number has actually risen. Banks managed to pare down the shadow inventory, but largely by taking possession of foreclosed homes. As of September, they owned nearly 994,000 foreclosed homes, up 21% from a year earlier. The shadow inventory stood at 5.2 million homes, down 7% from a year earlier. Grand total: 107 months of inventory.

  3. grim says:

    From the Star Ledger:

    Bergen County fund manager is sentenced to 40 years in prison for $150M Ponzi scheme

    A fund manager whose customers inquired about their accounts after hearing about Ponzi king Bernard Madoff’s fraud was sentenced to 40 years in prison today, and the judge said he could not understand why he bought a $25 million mansion in the Hamptons as he was ruining his investors’ futures.

    James Nicholson, 44, of Saddle River, N.J., showed no emotion as U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan announced the sentence for his $140 million fraud in a courtroom packed with more than 50 jilted investors, including some of Nicholson’s own family members.

  4. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Big Banks Told Not to ‘Fix’ a Fraud

    Ohio’s attorney general threw a wrench into the banking industry’s push to quickly restart foreclosures by fixing faulty paperwork, and pressed them to modify mortgage loans.

    In two letters released Friday, Attorney General Richard Cordray criticized a number of banks and loan-servicing companies, including Wells Fargo & Co.; Ally Financial Inc.’s GMAC Mortgage; Bank of America Corp.; and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Mr. Cordray said the banks are trying to paper over fraud committed in foreclosures with temporary fixes that don’t address underlying problems in the banks’ practices.

    “It is not acceptable for a party who believes they submitted false court documents to merely replace those documents. Wells Fargo and any other banks are not simply allowed a ‘do-over,'” he wrote in the letter to Wells. The other letter was sent to Ohio judges, who were asked to notify Mr. Cordray when banks file substitute affidavits.

    “The banks are committing fraud on the court, essentially perjury, and then saying ‘Whoops! You caught me! Here’s some different evidence and use that instead,’ ” Mr. Cordray said in an interview Friday. “I know a lot of judges are not going to take kindly to that.”

  5. 30 year realtor says:

    Latest phenomenon in REO pricing I have experienced is, some of my clients are now leaning toward the lowest valuation (of 3 obtained in pre-marketing) when pricing their properties for MLS. There is a clear indication that they do not expect to receive the “quick sale value” provided by their brokers or appraiser. It is almost as though they realize they are selling garbage property into a nonexistent market.

  6. 30 year realtor says:

    Biggest differences between now and 1991? By 1991 (3 years into the down market) banks were auctioning commercial notes and mortgages to accelerate clean up of the mess.

    At sheriff sales banks were cutting their upset bid to far below the amount owed on the property. They recognized the problem and the value of getting rid of properties quickly.

    Difference between now and then? There were solvent institutions that could afford to cut out the diseased portions of their portfolio and live to lend another day.

  7. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey “When I Think Back On All The Crap I Learned In High School It’s A Wonder I Can Think At All, And Though My Lack Of Education Hasn’t Hurt Me Much I Can Read The Writing On The Wall

  8. Lamar says:

    I was there in 1991, bidding away at RTC auctions. Thanks to people like William Black, resolution was swift and criminal banksters were hauled away to jail. Anyone with a scintilla of RE knowledge was scared in the beginning but quickly realized things were going to be okay. At the end of the day, many RTC assets were exactly that: prime, Class A buildings in good locations, selling for pennies on the dollar.

    Black initiated over 1,000 cases involving control fraud. Today’s problem is 10x bigger than RTC- and is accompanied by a chronic, structural debt deflation crisis- yet only one case of control fraud has been referred for prosecution. And the cherry on the sundae? Most of the properties requiring resolution are molding, festering residential shitboxes who highest and best use in many cases are as targets for a wrecking ball.

  9. Shore Guy says:

    We’re going bankrupt like its 1991

  10. Shore Guy says:

    Or, as Bruce would say:

    Its all gone, gone, gone.

  11. Shore Guy says:

    Fools Gold Coast?

  12. Shore Guy says:

    The Pyrite Coast, if you will.

  13. 30 year realtor says:

    Lamar said:” Most of the properties requiring resolution are molding, festering residential shitboxes who highest and best use in many cases are as targets for a wrecking ball.”

    On BPO forms for valuing REO there is always a space to write about positive features. The comment the Asset Managers seem to enjoy is, “still standing”.

  14. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Okay, here is my nomination for the first beer to be made at an NJRER GTG:

    “Grim’s Reaper”


  15. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    The Mold Coast.

    “Elsewhere, in three communities where the massive Port Imperial development is ensconced along the riverfront — Weehawken, West New York and Guttenberg — inventory levels ranged from 19 months to 2 years.”

    Where is that idiot Pret?

  16. Shore Guy says:

    I like it.

    What color should it be when finished?

  17. Shore Guy says:

    So, AQ tries out several different bomb designs and manages to get them onboard air freighters. I suppose that now we will go scanning for certain types of detonators. So, AQ will shift away from metal wires to something else and then try again. Then we will do X and they will do Y.

    Until we either 1) wipe all these miscreants off the face of the earth (which presupposes that we can identify all terrorists or those inclined to become terrorists) or 2) eliminate the West’s need for imported energy, we are going to have to spend un-Godly amounts of money to fight the last terrorist attack.

    I have said it to people in government in DC, I have said it on international and national broadc-ts, I have said it at aviation security conferences, and other settings, and I say it again here: If terrorists want to get us, they will get us. There are myriad ways, and while we spend ourselves silly trying to prevent the next version of the last attack, they are moving on to a new method.

    A handful of AQ could disrupt electric transmission, or gas transmission, kill thousands, or create amazing visual displays of disruption without our being able to stop them.

    They spend thousands in offense and we spend Billions in defense. What the threat of SDI did to the USSR we have happening to us. We should be spending 100s of billions in energy independence. Instead we are spending it to defend against attacks from a handful of peoplemixing chemicals in a hovel in Yeman and Pakistan.

  18. Outofstater says:

    #19 Amen.

  19. speedkillsu says:

    When I used to commute to NYC from the shore ,whenever I passed Port Liberte I could never understand why anybody would live in such a desolated area .Then when it was found to be build on a toxic dump ,well only in New Jersey .I guess they figured a way to bury that fact from buyers

  20. Nomad says:

    #19 – Shore –

    Just throw a stiff tax on gas and use it to drive the alternative energy industry. If the tax is > $1.25 or so a gallon, the hybrid vehicles will start to sell quickly. A tax incentive for those who purchase a hybrid will offset a portion of the higher vehicle cost that the consumer will have to pay given hybrids will be in greater demans.

    PS – people will also stop making that one qucik trip in there car to wherever and get more done each time they take out their car.

  21. Dan says:

    Gave up and renewed my lease for 8 more months. Just saw on gsmls a townhouse I was considering dropped their price from $435k to $400k today. I wonder if it will still be there in four or five months?

  22. Fast Eddie says:

    A somewhat larger loft unit on Newark Street, also renovated, with one and a half baths and a private roof deck, sold for $320,000 in 2003 and was offered for $510,000 last spring. In October the price was cut to $455,000.

    If it was 320K seven years ago, why would they think they could get 455K? They very best scenario you could hope for is a price tag at 395K. But keep holding on to that dream, Mr. seller. By 2013, when you finally capitulate and sell for around 290K, you’ll wonder where at all went wrong as the tears roll down your cheeks while you put another layer of duct tape around the leaking water hose on your 1995 Corolla.

  23. Libtard says:

    It wasn’t 91, but two years later. I went looking for a job with my freshly minted secondary degree. After searching for 3 months, I took the best offer. $18,300 with healthcare. I made fake rail passes and lived in a basement in Clifton. Yeah, it feels like 1991 all over again.

  24. Confused In NJ says:

    A vampire can’t cross your threshold unless you invite them in. The current government allows unlimited numbers in from Transylvania, with no checks on their incisors, then wonders why they get bitten. I guess because they consider themselves to be Globalists rather then Americans. I guess we have no Americans in office anymore. Amazing how Bin Ladin, with a minor expenditure, cost us Trillions, as we spin ourself into the ground like a whirling dervish.

  25. Lamar says:

    hyde (5)-

    Thanks for the RATM. Long day.

  26. Lamar says:

    It’s all turning to shit now. Best thing that could happen would be an AQ attack; at least we’d focus our anger rather than eating ourselves silly and hating each other.

  27. NJCoast says:

    Yeah I remember 1991. We had trimmed all the fat from our firm on the NY Options Exchange and our backs were up against the wall. We were using our savings to pay employees’ salaries and benefits. One night my eternal optimist husband just lost it and said he couldn’t do it anymore. We had a mortgage and two small kids, I told him to snap out of it, which he did, and we just kept plugging away. Lots of jumping the Path train turnstiles and playing liars poker for lunch money. Scary times.

  28. Lamar says:

    Spent a day today showing houses. Each one was shittier and more overpriced than the one before. My buyers and I were just laughing out loud by the time we hit the last one.

    It’s really special when a guy asking 600K for some rancid oil-reeking hovel can’t bother to vacuum foot-long spider webs (in that “grand” entry hall, natch), and the spider webs then fill up with dust.

  29. Lamar says:

    coast (29)-

    At least in ’91, you could pull the trigger on some calls and feel like you weren’t taking your life in your hands. I can’t imagine doing anything more these days than dabbling in some covered calls or using any kind of long strategy as anything more than a hedge to get me to the bell.

  30. Fast Eddie says:


    What does the term “Arip” on a listing mean?

  31. Lamar says:

    Attorney review in progress.

  32. Lamar says:

    It all works, until it doesn’t.

    I hear people say that all the time now.

  33. NJGator says:

    Attorney Review in Progress

  34. Fast Eddie says:

    Thank you. I figured attorney review something but wasn’t sure. So, when it says arip removed on the listing, what does that signify? The deal fell through?

  35. Lamar says:

    This is scarier than the Mike Myers movie I’m watching right now. And, Mike just fed some guy his own spleen.

    “A Fed paper released in September, which we luckily missed as otherwise it would have led to the collective death through uncontrollable foaming in the mouth of the entire Zero Hedge staff, was “Oil Shocks and the Zero Bound on Nominal Interest Rates”, in which author Martin Bodenstein (an econ Ph.D.) argues that oil price shocks (i.e., surges in the price of oil such as the one we are about to experience courtesy of a fresh trillion in liquidity about to be unleashed by the Fed) are… wait for it… beneficial to GDP and stimulative to the interest-rate sensitive parts of the economy. To wit: “In fact, if the increase in oil prices is gradual, the persistent rise in inflation can cause a GDP expansion.”. Yes you read that right. The Fed is stealthily floating the idea that a surge in oil prices will be for the greater good. In essence, the Fed is telegraphing that while it acknowledges that oil is about to jump to over $100, it won’t be as bad as those with a functioning brain dare to claim. And, as we show below, it will actually be a very good thing! While we would probably get a massive lethal subdural hemorrhage if told to argue a view so blatantly and stupefyingly demented, insane and, simply said, wrong, as that espoused by Bodenstein, we are glad that Sean Corrigan of Diapason has gone the extra mile to not only expose the Fed charlatans for their voodoo gimmickry in this narrow topic, and brings up an even more critical idea, which is that the Fed “actually welcomes the current surge in the prices of many of the staples of everyday life; that it actually exults in the drain being exerted on family budgets; that it revels in the squeeze on profit margins being suffered by already-struggling small businesses, because it imagines this will serve to lower the reckoning of the ethereal construct of a generalized, future real interest rate and that this alone will serve to shower riches upon all who are presently suffering, in comparison for the present woes.” That nobody has reached this conclusion before is explainable – it is something only the brain of an illogical, demented, perverted genocidal madman’s brain can come up with. Which is why we are now convinced the Fed is hoping for not only mild inflation, but an outright surge in prices.”


  36. Lamar says:

    fast (36)-

    Dunno. Guessing it means removed from market for further showing.

  37. Mike says:

    That City Fed (a spinoff of City Savings for those who are old enough to remember) brings back memories first of all it was was where I had my first savings account which was started back in Grammar school when my parents would give me money to bring into school along with your own bank book and a rep would come from the bank to pick up and make a deposit (guess it was to teach us about saving) then when the 1991 fiasco happened it was my first experience with a failed bank (lost some great rates on CD’S when they were taken over). Besides Jersey City I also believe they financed some townhouses in Union next to the Kean Estate that went under and all I remember is seeing for sale signs one weekend on them for $99000.00. But no way what is going on now similar to 1991. You could just smell the oppurtunity in the air back than. Today somthing smells really rotten. Oh well the vino is making me tired and I have to get early to tailgate for the Jets game.

  38. Lamar says:

    FedCo must certainly realize they’ve stimmed inflation in all the wrong things (i.e., consumer goods and necessities). Their only option now is to claim victory and claim it’s all part of their plan.

    I genuinely hope I live to see these criminals stood up against a wall and shot dead by firing squads.

  39. NJCoast says:

    We were floor brokers then not traders. Computers have replaced floor brokers. We trade our own account now since selling the firm. Last year we wrote out of the money calls on stock positions. But for the first time in many years we have no stock positions. Sometimes we jump in but are out by the end of the day- usually we’re done trading shortly after the opening. Cowboys.

    coast (29)-

    At least in ’91, you could pull the trigger on some calls and feel like you weren’t taking your life in your hands.

  40. relo says:

    1991: I graduated in 1991 and recall it was a terrible job market. A couple of the “Big 8” had merged around that time and pulled the plug on the weaker sisters’ hiring class. I was fortunate to find something in private and then enrolled in Grad School that fall. By the time I was on the way out, things had “normalized”. I can sympathize with what the recent/current grads are going through and don’t think their prospects are as hopful as ours turned out to be.

  41. Yikes says:

    Clot, how are you a fan of baseball, but dislike football so much?

    (I know you like soccer, I do, too.)

  42. Wow this is a great resource.. I’m enjoying it.. good article

  43. yo'me says:

    Soon after tales of robo-signing began making headlines, the state attorneys general, led by Tom Miller of Iowa, mobilized their forces. Practically overnight, all 50 of them agreed to conduct a joint investigation into the bank practices that led to the scandal.

    Unlike the feds’ tepid efforts, this will be a serious investigation, led by a handful of assistant attorneys general who’ve worked together for years, and who see this as their chance to finally do something for beleaguered homeowners. They’ve got resources, subpoena power and a justifiable suspicion that the robo-signing shenanigans are just the tip of a very ugly iceberg.


  44. yo'me says:

    After all this,$849,000 left to the Madoff’s victims.

    Madoff Firm Trustee Says $26.9 Million Spent, $849,000 Found For Victims Irving Picard, the trustee overseeing the bankruptcy of Bernard Madoff’s investment firm, spent $26.9 million in the six months ended Sept. 30 while recovering $849,000 for victims of Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, according to a report filed in Manhattan federal court.

  45. yo'me says:

    Cablevision Reaches Fee Agreement With Fox, Avoiding World Series Blackout

  46. Lamar says:

    yikes (43)-

    I can’t stand baseball. The Mets and ster0ids ruined it for me.

  47. Lamar says:

    Madoff’s victims should all get the Congressional Medal of Honor, for funding all the black ops that Madoff channeled money into.

  48. Outofstater says:

    #37 “surge in prices” It’s already here. In my corner of the world, coffee is up 33% in the last month, the price of margarine has more than doubled over the last year and
    the oil spike hasn’t even begun yet.

  49. Juice Box says:

    Inflation is baked into the cake, Bernake cries deflation yet the inflation started up again July 09.

    Obama is not going to be Able to blame GWB on this one inflation will do in any chance of his re-election just like Jimmy Carter.

  50. Shore Guy says:



    A Rip(off)

  51. Shore Guy says:

    A tip the bar adds is not a tip, just a more expensive drink that the bar uses to raise the wages of the servers.

  52. Libtard says:

    Looked at a potential fixer-upper house today that had lots of cracks in the plaster. It was an old house, so some cracks are to be expected. But there were a lot of them. In some places, you could push on the wall and the plaster would move and the crack would temporarily widen. Does anyone know if this is a sign of a larger problem? Like a foundation issue?

  53. Shore Guy says:

    I saw some summarized pole results that said that half of Democrats (51%) want someone to run against BO in the Dem primaries.

    I still remain convinces that he will not run. He gains nothing by running and can lose much by doing so.

  54. Shore Guy says:


    Buy now or be priced-out forever.

  55. Shore Guy says:

    Poll, even

  56. Shore Guy says:


    One thing I would worry about is cracked studs. I once saw that, and I assume that it also indicated issues elsewhere in the structure. As for the house you are looking at, I don’t know that I would seriously consider buying without being able to remove the plaster to have a structural engineer give it a look over.

  57. Shore Guy says:


    Lots of mail, etc., gets shipped on passenger jets, do this should notsurprise anyone.

  58. Barbara says:

    the plaster maybe separating from the wood lath. Its fixable with a kit and some materials but its happening everywhere, it may be too much work. IME its not a foundation problem if there are no dips in the floors.

  59. Libtard says:

    No dips in the floors, which is good advice. None of the cracks are wide as well, which means I could fix them easy with mesh tape and drywall compound. I honestly think it’s just a lot of years of negligence and the cracks have grown over time. Am seriously considering purchasing this mess. Weaknesses are no central air (kind of common) and there is no sink in the first floor powder closet as well as some windows need replacing. Kitchen is a scrap job, but a nice layout. Rooms are very large. Driveway will eventually need resurfacing. Really not too bad and price would have it as one of the lowest priced per square foot of all sales (minus train wrecks) in the town this year. Will keep you all updated.

  60. Shore Guy says:

    ” None of the cracks are wide as well, which means I could fix them easy with mesh tape and drywall compound”

    Have you ever seen anyone run a screw with a washer and pull the plaster back up against the laths by screwing into them? I seem to recall a This Old House from a loooooonnnnngggggggggg time ago.

  61. Libtard says:

    Yeah…That’s a cool trick. I used to love that show until I realized that they have every tool ever created. I’m just happy to have a portable table saw.

  62. Shore Guy says:


    Editor of The New Oxford Annotated Bible Michael Coogan recently applied his thorough knowledge of Scripture to a universal and eternally relevant topic: se-x. In God and Se-x: What the Bible Really Says…. snip

    Read more: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,2027582,00.html#ixzz13y1AWfef

  63. Shore Guy says:

    “I used to love that show until I realized that they have every tool ever created.”

    Even more so for New Yankee Workshop. I stopped watching that when it became clear that it was more a vehile for selling tools than providing instruction on how to use a reasonably-well-equipped workshop to create things.

  64. spyderjacks says:

    Check out “Rough Cut with Tommy Mac”. He uses hand tools in addition to power tools, sometimes showing you have to use both for the same task. It’s a new series for WGBH but Tommy has been out on the web for a couple of years already.

    I’ll admit that Norm (New Yankee Workshop) had practically every tool possible, and a lot of them through manufacturer donations (not all of which saw action). The right tool makes the work more predictable. So it was never a problem for me. A good tool last a lot longer than pay-per-view.

    No matter the tools, Norm did more to keep woodworking going, over the last twenty years, than anybody. TV shows cost money. Marketing dollars pay the bulk of it. That’s entertainment!

  65. Shore Guy says:


    I have no issue with him having tools. The problem is that for even above-average woodworkers the tools he is using are beyond what we are likely to have. For pure entertainment, it is fine. As a how to? Well, it is less vaaluable than it was back when I started watching.

  66. Libtard says:

    Yup. I think portable surface planers are not in the average man’s toolbox.

  67. Shore Guy says:

    Not in my toolbox, nyway. I prefer to keep it in my glove box, just in case.

  68. Shore Guy says:

    No Treasury Secretary costumes yet.

  69. Al Gore says:

    Silver short squeeze! Lets get it on!

  70. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [68] spyderjacks

    “Norm Abrams:

    A fellow UMass alum.

  71. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [72] shore

    But you can tell that the dollar is now a joke. Lots of kids and parents in Brigadoon wearing currency-themed costumes. Never saw that in the past.

  72. Lamar says:

    Dress like dead money. I called it two weeks ago.

  73. Lamar says:

    Whatever happened to the days when people gave you apples with razor blades or needles in them for Halloween?

  74. Lamar says:

    Memphis was so tough when I was growing up that doctors’ offices would advertise that they’d x-ray your Halloween candy for free.

  75. Lamar says:

    I’m probably bonkers from eating gamma-irradiated candy.

  76. Shore Guy says:


    Indiana voters are likely Tuesday to enshrine new property-tax caps in the state constitution with an amendment that would make them permanent, adding to pressures on municipal budgets already hit by declines in incomes and housing prices.

    Gov. Mitch Daniels, a Republican considered a potential presidential candidate in 2012, has been campaigning in favor of the amendment. Otherwise, he said in an interview, it will be too tempting for lawmakers to raise tax rates.

    “Human nature and the bureaucratic instinct for self-preservation very rarely reform, absent some pressure to do so,” Mr. Daniels said.

    A majority of voters seem to agree. A survey released Friday by the nonpartisan Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics found that 52% of likely or actual voters favored adding the tax caps to the Indiana constitution. Other polls have shown larger majorities supporting the amendment

    The Indiana debate reflects concerns about property taxes among homeowners nationwide. As the recession has slashed income and sales-tax revenues, states have cut funds for local governments.

    In response, some cities, towns and school districts have raised property taxes—their main source of revenue—to partially fill gaps, even as property values have fallen.

    On Tuesday, Colorado voters will consider an initiative that would sharply cut local property taxes.

    In New York, both Andrew Cuomo, the Democratic candidate for governor, and Carl Paladino, his Republican opponent, are campaigning on promises to cap property taxes.

    In New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican, struck a deal with the state legislature in July to cap annual property-tax increases at 2%, from 4% previously.

    The best-known tax cap is California’s Proposition 13, passed three decades ago in a referendum, which limits property-tax increases to 2% a year.

    A 2007 spike in Indiana’s property-tax bills led to a protest, the ousting of the mayor of Indianapolis and a 2008 law limiting property taxes. Since Jan. 1, Indiana property taxes cannot exceed 1% of the assessed valuation for residential homes, 2% for rental properties and farms, and 3% for businesses.


  77. Yikes says:

    As they say in the streets, this is Mr. Wantan “doin’ work.”

    Very well put. Pass it on.

    Mr Wantanapolous says:
    October 29, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    You can argue liberals/conservatives till you are blue in the face; one prints/spends, the other taxes/spends. The master minds created the mascots a long time ago. Pit the sheeple against each other. In the meantime, the banksters, military and pharma cartel control the purse strings. Do you actually think that the fed heads care if the seat is occupied by a blue/red ass? Yet, they have been raping us since 1913. Go ahead, count districts, stay up all night and strategize. The directors are ready to go with act 1 or 2. Either way, they win, we lose.

  78. Shore Guy says:

    Is it really a “one night stand” if the two people DONT have s-ex?


    Christine O’Donnell seems a bit less than what one should hope for in a U.S. Senate candidate, BUT this kind of article really strikes this citizen as yellow journalism and the headline leaves false impression with those who will only see it or hear about it.

  79. Shore Guy says:

    Some chickens coming home to roost:



    Maybe this is why the Expat Report is late.

  80. Shore Guy says:


    If this sort of thing does not give folks a reason to limit the number of se-xual partners they have, I don’t know what will. What ever happend to people keeping things about themselves and others private?

  81. Shore Guy says:

    Did anyone hear anything about “Devil’s Night” in detroit this year? It used to be that thugs went tan burned down hundreds of buildings on 10-30. I wonder if there is just nothing worth burning anymore?

  82. Fabius Maximus says:

    #82 Shore

    “Christine O’Donnell seems a bit less than what one should hope for in a U.S. Senate candidate, ”

    For me, this is on the list for comment of the year.

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