Sandy wrecks go cheap

From the Record:

Buyers line up for 400 homes wrecked by Superstorm Sandy

Matt Price and his wife, Carla, are gambling that the devastation inflicted by Superstorm Sandy will be their key to the American dream of home ownership.

The couple was among the successful bidders at an auction Wednesday that sold off the last of more than 400 flood-damaged houses that were purchased by New York state after the superstorm devastated shoreline communities in 2012.

Their prize was a modest, four-bedroom cape in Babylon that sits across from a boatyard and a canal that spilled over its bulkheads during the historic storm.

As part of a program to bail out distressed homeowners in the most flood-prone neighborhoods, the state paid $435,000 for the property, based on an estimate of what it was worth before the storm. Matt Price, a 30-year-old real estate broker, got it at auction for $145,000.

While the building was salvageable and partly repaired after the flood, he plans to tear it down and spend as much as $200,000 to build higher and sturdier to protect his investment.

“Sandy was a very unique situation,” he said, standing outside the Babylon home Friday. “Not to say that I don’t think it would happen again. I think it’s going to be a very rare occurrence if it ever did. The goal is to make it as resistant or stormproof as possible so that’s not an issue.”

This week, the state completed a series of auctions that began a year ago, selling 417 homes for $66 million. The state purchased the homes for $140.5 million, using funding provided by federal disaster relief after Sandy and Hurricane Irene, which struck in 2011.

State officials say there is an advantage to selling the homes for deep discounts to restore neighborhoods devastated by Sandy, which damaged thousands of homes, killed 182 people and caused about $65 billion in damage.

The houses “are properties we want to see on the tax rolls,” said Lisa Bova-Hiatt, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery.

The state demands all redevelopment of the properties be consistent with local zoning regulations, many of which have been strengthened after Sandy to require fortification against storm damage, including requirements to raise the living areas of rebuilt houses above the flood plain. Many shoreline neighborhoods have been filled with construction workers lifting structures higher.

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53 Responses to Sandy wrecks go cheap

  1. Comrade Nom Deplume, Newspeak Editor says:


  2. Juice Box says:

    why didn’t they demolish?

  3. The Great Pumpkin says:

    What’s your take on this?

    “Government funding trends of public colleges is a red herring.

    The real reason is that education as a whole became a serious for-profit enterprise. It consists of a captive consumer market and is fueled by government backed loans. The money is siphoned into the bureaucratic hole consisting of school administration and banking industry brokering the loans. Combine that with perverse money mismanagement by the administration associated with risky financial investments and frivolous spending.

    Look at the 1960’s “The Harvard Crimson” bulletin announcing: “Tuition to Rise to $1520; Total Includes Health Fee” Hence, Harvard tuition in 1960 was $12K in 2015’s dollars. Harvard is not directly funded by government and has $32 billion endowment.
    US job market is such that not having a degree is not an option. Manufacturing jobs have vanished. What is left for majority are service jobs that somehow require a college degree. While a college degree helps getting a job it doesn’t create one. Education provides a competitive advantage it doesn’t solve an economic dilemma of how is it possible for the population to accumulate any savings when majority of living expenses go toward products and services produced by very few people.

  4. The Great Pumpkin says:

    3- Hits the nail on the head, imo.

    “Education provides a competitive advantage it doesn’t solve an economic dilemma of how is it possible for the population to accumulate any savings when majority of living expenses go toward products and services produced by very few people.”

  5. The Great Pumpkin says:

    “Job Creation, Gross Domestic Product, and other Fairy Tales

    Let’s raise the Gross Domestic Product by taking turns of giving each other daily back rubs.

    Unemployment results in living hardships and social instability. It is therefore a government’s imperative to promote job creation in times of high unemployment. But can jobs really be created? Since jobs in a market economy reflect a demand for products and services, job creation implies demand creation. Therefore a better question is: Can demand be created?

    Yes, it can and is created by the private sector but specifically for the purpose of increasing profits not creating more jobs. It is hard to envision how a business can be incentivized to create new jobs. Let say the government reduces taxes levied on a business. It makes no sense for the business to spend this profit on hiring new workers or keeping existing ones when the demand is not there to match it. Perhaps a business can increase demand by lowering prices but that again would cut into profits. Also note that the product pricing does not affect demand for Essentials.

    The only reason a business would divert profits to hiring people is if it was a part of long term investment strategy, which is generally not a common occurrence. Long term strategies require lots of capital and are risky.

    Realistically, only the Government can directly create demand for products on behalf of population by initiating public works projects, increase spending in military, education, policing, health. Most of these projects eventually get outsourced to a private sector. The prudence of such spending is difficult to prove and thus always a subject of political debate.

    To measure success of government intervention, people seek a simple metric. The Government and the private sector love to use economic indicators such Unemployment Rate and Gross Domestic Product to gauge the health of the economy. However, this is as meaningless as measuring a temperature of a car engine to determine car’s performance. For example, if a half of population was digging holes and the other half was busy filling them, then the economy would appear to be in excellent shape. The same could be said if the country suddenly developed a massive tulip industry that included cultivation, harvesting, distribution, sales, contests, advertisement, research, training, patent laws, and so on. Such wasteful economies can only last for as long as they can be subsidized by available natural resources or external donations. When the majority of population can no longer obtain sufficient quantities of Essential products, it results in government collapse or a tyrannical rule of forced deprivation.”

  6. The Great Pumpkin says:

    “Money Hoarding, Trade Imbalance, and Jobs

    There is an interesting side effect of accumulating money due to profit advantage or a greater degree of independence. If the accumulated money is not spent, it interferes with the primary function of money which is to facilitate exchange of products of specialized labor.

    To demonstrate this, consider an isolated community with population of one thousand. With time, people in such community will become specialized in delivering specific products and services.
    Increased Labor Specialization will require Bartering of goods. Introduction of Money will soon follow to resolve inconveniences of Bartering.

    Barter (is) hindered by the “double coincidence of wants” which barter requires, i.e., for the exchange to occur, each participant must want what the other has.
    Indivisibility of certain goods

    For a community of a thousand, money can even be made virtual by having each person keep a copy of all community transaction (their own ledger) and have it synced up with everyone at the end of the day. By mutual agreement, each person would start with a similar quantity of virtual money that would represent the amount of equity or labor a person could potentially deliver. Money is a form of IOU so there must be reasonable limits to how much of it each person would have at the start relative to the others.

    Perfect trade balances do not exists. With time, some individuals will accumulate a net profit by working harder or smarter or maybe through unethical means. Profit accumulation in the form of money is a one way flow of money away from the consumers and a opposite flow of products and services toward them. For Essentials this flow cannot stop and hence will result in eventual depletion of money among the consumers. Then what?

    Money Ejection
    Accumulating money will cause trading to degenerate into a distribution. Something (products and services) is being distributed in return for nothing (IOU’s). Until the money is spent, the holder of the money only has a pile of promises. With little money left in circulation to facilitate trade the following will occur:
    deflation (rise in value of money)
    reduction in demand for non-essentials (Derivatives) and hence reduction in labor

    Money Injection
    The money-wealthy could inject money into circulation by spending it on mostly Derivative type products anything from personal luxuries to contributions that benefit community such as schools and hospitals, or they could inject it by loaning the money to the cash-poor.

    Loaning, even interest free, is problematic because it perpetuates trade imbalance. The consumer debt will grow indefinitely as the consumers continue to borrow money/credit to continue buying Essentials.

    A trade imbalance between China and US is maintained by having China buy US Treasury debt with US dollars thus injecting dollars back into US economy. This money trickles back to consumers via easy loans and credit so they can continue to make further purchases.

    Government can play the same role as a money-wealthy entity by either (a) spending or (b) loaning money for things that should benefit the nation as a whole. For example, governments introduce more money by ‘loaning’ it out via central banking. See “Money Creation in Modern Economy”:

    Significant wealth concentration in the form of money represents a trade imbalance — a one-sided demand usually generate through high Labor Effort Profit.”

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  8. Splat Mofo says:

    Too much Punkin’ cut/paste for me here.

    Maybe tomorrow will be better.

  9. what happened says:

    Real Estate Question for the board:

    Have a relative who bought a house in 2012 after the NJ changed the cess pool law. The house has a “gray water” system which collects the washing machine discharge. It collects only that.

    They had a septic company come and pump the main septic tank. the company said the gray water system is a cesspool and is not allowed anymore. It collects both solids and liquids and does not have a drain field. If they go to sell, they will need to fix it. They said they could fix it by connecting it to the main septic tank.

    They are upset because their home inspector, septic inspector, below grade tank scanner, lawyer, and realtor somehow knew about this but missed the law requirement. The septic people did not how they managed to buy the property in the first place. The law says this must be fixed at the time of sale.

    The bought a few months after the law changed. The law was proposed a year earlier and so this was a known thing.

    Can they do anything about this? It seems like everyone failed them.

  10. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Sorry, was just trying to throw some discussion material out there. I thought it was worthy. Wasn’t trying to annoy you. My apologies.

    Splat Mofo says:
    May 14, 2016 at 4:12 pm
    Too much Punkin’ cut/paste for me here.

    Maybe tomorrow will be better.

  11. The Great Pumpkin says:

    11- Man, what a mess. Wait for one of the seasoned vets to confirm, but they bought the problem and will now be stuck fixing it. I’ve never dealt with a cesspool situation, but I’m pretty sure they are responsible for the problem now.

  12. grim says:

    It’s a seepage pit, not a cesspool.

  13. what happened says:


    they said in the report two terms in the law:

    -“Cesspool means a covered pit with open-jointed lining into which untreated sewage is discharged, the liquid portion of which is disposed of by leaching into the surrounding soil, the solids or sludge being retained within the pit.”

    -“Sanitary sewage” means any liquid waste containing animal or vegetable matter in suspension or solution, or the water carried wastes resulting from the discharge of water closets, laundry tubs, washing machines, sinks, dishwashers, or any other source of water carried wastes of human origin or containing putrescible material. This term specifically excludes industrial, hazardous or toxic wastes and materials.”

    my realitive looked up the law and said the definitions match. he also said to mention this.

    -“Seepage pit means a covered pit with open-jointed lining through which septic tank effluent may seep into the surrounding soil.”

    it seems stupid but spelled out in the law.

  14. grim says:

    C’est la vie.

  15. grim says:

    Wait long enough and I’m sure we’ll see gray water re-use systems adopted in NJ – this is the logical next step in water conservation.

    If the septic is in good working condition, leave it alone.

    Do they plan to sell any time soon?

    What’s the big deal with connecting the washer to the septic? Re-route the drain, worst case you need an ejector pump. If the plumbing is in your favor, this is probably a $50 DIY fix, if you need an ejector, probably a $500 DIY fix.

    I would keep the gray water system. It’s better for the septic.

    They could consider themselves lucky – they can use bleach and oxiclean – they’ll have the whitest whites and cleanest laundry in the neighborhood. They can also do 5 loads of wash on a Saturday. (this is partially tongue in cheek). But, if their system is really just a drywell, and they have good soil perc, it’s not so tongue in cheek. If they want to feel better about the environment, buy a new HE machine and use treehugger detergent. Their septic will probably last longer than if the previous owner had just connected the washer.

    If they’ve never had septic before, and they connect this thing to a septic that wasn’t sized for it, they are going to be in for a world of hurt.

  16. Amerigeddon says:

    I sold a bunch of houses in Hunterdoom that shot gray water out to a swale at the edge of the property. Simple, smart, very workable systems. If you have a 2+ acre lot, it’s a great way to go.

    Of course, NJ would outlaw them. They work.

  17. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Believe this is only temporary. Our kids will live totally different lives. They will not work mind numbing jobs just to have a job. They will focus on growing as an individual in whatever pleases and focus on building relationships. Their life will have no work. How the economics will work is beyond me, but they will figure it out. They will be the richest human populations in the history of mankind, having all the time in the world(time is money) to pursuit a life of exploration of the individual and of the world. No job to take up their time or thoughts. This is going to be awesome! Bring on automation, fast enough, that this happens before I retire. It’s going to be the best time to be alive in human history. Money will no longer be your life focus. Exploration will.

  18. Libturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    “Money will no longer be your life focus. Exploration will.”

    Woe. Wasn’t that how Leninism was supposed to work?

  19. 3b says:

    Wasn’t there a Bloomberg article the other day about a law firm that is using a robot to conduct legal work? So much for knowledge based workers. Just saying.

  20. The Great Pumpkin says:

    I think it will work something like this. 70-80% of the population will not work. They will receive a quality of life that provides for all you need. They will all be given a certain amount of money and what they do with it, is what they please. The other 20-30% of the population will still be in the workforce. These are your smart, creative, and driven individuals. They will be your upper class and rightfully so, since the other population doesn’t work, just consumes. It’s going to be a beautiful thing. If you want an extravegent house and that kind of lifestyle, you can have it, just have to work and compete. If you don’t desire this, nor have the ability/skills to compete, you get a life where you don’t have to work, and you still have a decent life. With automation providing the avenue for this all. It will make this all possible. Like I said, this will be the wealthiest human civilization to date.

    Libturd questioning the gender of Hillary’s Cankle fluid. says:
    May 15, 2016 at 11:47 am
    “Money will no longer be your life focus. Exploration will.”

    Woe. Wasn’t that how Leninism was supposed to work?

  21. Not the Pumkin says:

    What follows requires some reading at the links and some IQ points to interpret it.

    Pumkin you should take this advice. – Lasciate Ogni Speranza
    Your post are made in a economic-philosophical-political spatial plane.
    However, the execution of the choices that results from those economic-philosophical spatial plane will decide the bigger questions.

    The big question is are we about to enter “The Great Filter” .

    This one below is one of the bigger unknowns unknowns that have become knows unknows.

  22. Not the Pumkin says:

    The future is more like this:

  23. Ben says:

    Hey Pumpkinator, you are the second coming John Maynard Keynes smith/econ116a/keynes1.pdf

    Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren

    Thus for the first time since his creation man will be faced with his real, his permanent problem-how to use his freedom from pressing economic cares,
    how to occupy the leisure, which science and compound interest will have won for him, to live wisely and agreeably and well.

    The strenuous purposeful money-makers may carry all of us along with them into the lap of economic abundance. But it will be those peoples, who can keep alive, and cultivate into a fuller perfection, the art of life itself and do not sell
    themselves for the means of life, who will be able to enjoy the abundance when it comes.

    Yet there is no country and no people, I think, who can look forward to the age
    of leisure and of abundance without a dread. For we have been trained too long to strive and not to enjoy. It is a fearful problem for the ordinary person, with no special talents, to occupy himself, especially if he no longer has roots in the soil or in custom or in the beloved conventions of a traditional society. To judge from the behaviour and the achievements of the wealthy classes to-day in
    any quarter of the world, the outlook is very depressing! For these are, so to speak, our advance guard-those who are spying out the promised land for the
    rest of us and pitching their camp there. For they have most of them failed disastrously, so it seems to me-those who have an independent income but no associations or duties or ties-to solve the problem which has been set them.

    I feel sure that with a little more experience we shall use the new-found bounty of nature quite differently from the way in which the rich use it to-day, and will map out for ourselves a plan of life quite otherwise than theirs. For many ages to come the old Adam will be so strong in us that everybody will need to do some work if he is to be contented. We shall do more things for ourselves than is usual with the rich to-day, only too glad to have small duties and tasks and routines. But beyond this, we shall endeavour to spread the bread thin on the butter-to make what work there is still to be done to be as widely shared as possible. Three-hour shifts
    or a fifteen-hour week may put off the problem for a great while. For three hours a day is quite enough to satisfy the old Adam in most of us!

  24. chi says:


  25. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Not going to lie, the second article scared the hell out of me. Never thought about this angle. Down the rabbit hole we go.

    “This one below is one of the bigger unknowns unknowns that have become knows unknows.

  26. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Interesting stuff. Inevitable unless AI doesn’t go well?

    “The big question is are we about to enter “The Great Filter” .

  27. chi says:

    Medical Miracle (jj Edition):

    BOSTON — A cancer patient has received the first pen!s transplant in the United States, a Boston hospital said Monday.

    Massachusetts General Hospital has confirmed that Thomas Manning of Halifax, Massachusetts, received the transplanted pen!s in a 15-hour procedure last week. The 0rgan was transplanted from a deceased donor.

    The New York Times first reported the transplant Monday.

    Dr. Curtis Cetrulo, who helped lead the surgical team, tells the newspaper that normal urination should be possible for the 64-year-old Manning in a few weeks, with s3xual function possible in weeks to months.

    The Times reports most of Manning’s pen!s was removed during his battle with pen!le cancer.

    The world’s first pen!s transplant was performed at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa in December 2014.

    That patient had his pen!s amputated three years earlier after complications from a c!rcumcision performed in his late teens.

    The university near Cape Town said in announcing the transplant in March 2015 that the 21-year-old patient, whose name was not released, made a full recovering following the nine-hour surgery and regained all function in the transplanted 0rgan.

    A man in China received a pen!s transplant in 2005. That operation also appeared to be successful, but doctors said the man asked them to remove his new pen!s two weeks later because of psychological problems experienced by him and his wife.

  28. Amerigeddon says:

    Amazing that they do that procedure with a dead dick.

  29. chi says:

    Hello clot…..I guessed it was you based on

  30. Captain Nom Deplume, Besotted Rummy says:

    Once again, not news.

    When Reid and Pelosi were arguing for Obamacare’s replacement before most of it even rolled out, you knew that everyone knew it was destined to fail. Which means it was intentionally defective.

  31. Libturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    “Amazing that they do that procedure with a dead dick.”

    Might be bit tough finding a donor? And even if you do, you know you are getting a psychologically damaged one from a drag queen or similar.

  32. walking bye says:


    I wonder if they ask you a preference
    Black, White, Asian or First Available?

  33. Libturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Black for sure.

  34. The Great Pumpkin says:

    What a mess. So what changed? Paying the same crazy premiums we were always paying. It’s insane to have double digit hikes, how in the world is this sustainable?

    Definition of insanity= U.S. healthcare

    Captain Nom Deplume, Besotted Rummy says:
    May 16, 2016 at 9:32 am
    Once again, not news.

    When Reid and Pelosi were arguing for Obamacare’s replacement before most of it even rolled out, you knew that everyone knew it was destined to fail. Which means it was intentionally defective.

  35. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Why are the chances of abolishing insurance all together? Too big to fail? Too many jobs lost if it is eliminated? Will the jobs lost be offset in the economy by the savings brought to the individual? Something has to be done, it’s insane to keep going down this road.

    They can’t lower U.S. prices by offsetting prices in countries that are charged a lot less for the same healthcare? Why do we have subsidize their healthcare costs? What do we get out of it?

  36. The Great Pumpkin says:

    “If the auto recovery is a bubble, it probably doesn’t present a threat anywhere near comparable to the housing debacle of the 2000s. That said, the credit story would be consistent with the idea, popularized by the economist Larry Summers, that the U.S. has entered a period of persistently weak demand known as secular stagnation. In such an environment — barring more radical measures designed to improve the economy’s longer-term growth potential — creating unsustainable credit bubbles would be the only way to achieve the level of growth to which the U.S. has become accustomed.”

  37. The Great Pumpkin says:

    What a piece of propaganda. Let me get this straight, you expect 70% or more of the population to be ready for higher level learning at 18? Do they understand that college is for higher level learners (people really interested in learning)? What % of the population should we be aiming for to be college ready? We have 30% of the population owning a four year degree or higher, yet we want to double or triple that percentage for high school graduates that are college ready? Why?

    What do high schools have a magic wand to make everyone a higher level learner? Even if we do reach the point where 70% or more of our high school graduates are college ready, what kind of jobs are they going to get? What’s the goal? To have shop-rite cashiers that are college ready? What a joke.

    “Consider this: One-third of the incoming class at Rutgers had to take remedial classes for subjects they should have mastered in high school

    Michael Barone once observed that “one of my longtime rules in politics is that all procedural arguments are insincere, including this one.” He might have included the Education Law Center’s recent gambit in his catalogue of disingenuity. In this case the advocacy group filed a lawsuit against the New Jersey Department of Education for a “failure to comply with the statutory and regulatory requirements governing the issuance of State-endorsed high school diplomas and the failure to comply with the Administrative Procedure Act NJS.A. 52:14B-1 et seq..”

    Translation: The DOE. didn’t follow proper procedure when it replaced New Jersey’s old high school diploma qualifying test, called the HSPA, with the new test, called the PARCC. Straightforward, right? Or, per Barone’s dictum, not so much. All procedure, no substance; all shadow, no light”

  38. Libturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Can we please get back to our discussion of wiener transplants?

  39. Amerigeddon says:

    Will Bommacare cover my dick transplant?

  40. Essex says:

    if i want a dick on my elbow will insurance cover that….?

  41. Grim says:

    Boston … Traffic

  42. Essex says:

    Burlington College announced Monday that it is shutting down its operations, The Burlington Free Press reported. Operations will end May 27.

    The college has been told that its primary lender will not extend a line of credit and that the college’s ac creditor, which placed the college on probation, was not expected to lift the probation. Burlington is a small college focused on the liberal arts and progressive styles of education.

    Coralee Holm, dean of operations, told the newspaper that the college could not recover from the “crushing weight of the debt” incurred after the college in 2010 purchased 32 acres of lakefront property from the Archdiocese of Burlington.

    Some supporters of the college blamed the inability to pay for that purchase on Jane Sanders, president at the time. She resigned in 2011 and has been in the news more recently as the wife of Senator Bernie Sanders, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination.

    Sanders declined to comment to Inside Higher Ed for a 2014 article on the college’s sinking finances, but told Vermont publications that she left the college with a plan to pay off the debt through increased enrollment. Those increases did not materialize.

  43. Anon E. Moose says:

    Amerigeddon [40];

    Will Bommacare cover my dick transplant?

    Only if you’re gay. Privileged straight males need not apply.

  44. Obama looks good in red.

  45. Anon E. Moose says:

    ExPat [46];

    Just like his diapers in the baby pictures.

    Hey, how come Condi Rice was bounced out of being Rutgers’ commencement speaker, but half-white Obama was acceptable? Rutgers must be racist.

  46. Bystander says:

    #33 walking bye,

    One of each..sewed together in harmony..the liberal d!ck by Benneton.

  47. The Great Pumpkin says:

    38- Right on que. This article came out today written by Jamie Dimon and Michael Bloomberg. They pretty much take the same position as I did in post 38.

  48. Amerigeddon says:

    I’d like to have two dicks. Bommacare cool wit dat?

  49. Amerigeddon says:

    chi (42)-

    That’s a nice look for him.

  50. Amerigeddon says:

    Punkin’ doesn’t seem to understand that today’s topic is dick transplants.

  51. Amerigeddon says:

    bystander (48)-

    I bet we could get Benetton to sew us a designer human centipede.

    “One of each..sewed together in harmony..the liberal d!ck by Benneton.”

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