Examining the home price boom and its effect on owners, lenders, regulators, realtors and the economy as a whole.
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Posted By: Ben Jones @ 1:12 am
Bikini waxing is endangering crab louse population.
Australia’s top sexual health clinic hasn’t seen a woman with pubic lice since 2008, and public health officials in the U.K. have noticed a similar trend. “Pubic grooming has led to a severe depletion of crab louse populations,” Ian F. Burgess, a Cambridge medical entomologist told Bloomberg. “Add to that other aspects of body hair depilation, and you can see an environmental disaster in the making for this species.”
Will environmentalists act to declare crab lice an endangered species?
So far, they’ve been strangely silent on the mass murders of smallpox, polio, and guinea worm.
The speciesists who drive the environmental movement routinely descriminate in favor of charismatic megafauna. Protecting large ocean- or jungle-dwelling creatures offer far more effective fund raising platforms than do crab lice or mosquito species on the brink of eradication.
I believe they are keeping them alive in special zoo like environments; doubt they plan to release them back into the wild though.
The last cases of smallpox in the world occurred in an outbreak of two cases (one of which was fatal) in Birmingham, UK in 1978. A medical photographer, Janet Parker, contracted the disease at the University of Birmingham Medical School and died on September 11, 1978, after which the scientist responsible for smallpox research at the university, Professor Henry Bedson, committed suicide. In light of this incident, all known stocks of smallpox were destroyed or transferred to one of two WHO reference laboratories which had BSL-4 facilities; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States and the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology VECTOR in Koltsovo, Russia
The existence of smallpox in a Russian lab makes me quite uneasy.
“The existence of smallpox in a Russian lab makes me quite uneasy.”
There are probably a few Bens and a few Allenas in those labs.
Security concerns in a country where everything is for sale. Or maybe I’ve just watched too many spy movies in my life.
” Or maybe I’ve just watched too many spy movies in my life.”
Watch “Children of Men.” You’ll feel worse fore a few minutes, and then you’ll feel better.
Polio is still quite common in the environment.
“A medical photographer, Janet Parker, contracted the disease at the University of Birmingham Medical School and died on September 11, 1978″
How could she have been in the lab and not have been vaccinated for smallpox?
My mother was vaccinated for smallpox 4 times. She never got the distinctive scar so they kept giving it to her. Eventually the doctors decided that she wasn’t going to have a visible reaction to the vaccine and hoped that it was because she had a natural immunity rather than having an immune system that wouldn’t respond to that vaccine.
I don’t have the scar either and I think I’m old enough to have gotten the vaccine.
Can Michelle Obama somehow claim credit for this?
I thought that was in The Onion a couple of weeks ago.
The terrible inconveniences of trying to find a suitable apartment for under $10 million these days. Bonds are seemingly in a bubble right now, so where are we sad peons supposed to stash our spare spondoolicks in These Troubled Times?
“…PROFESSIONAL athletes who have just signed seven- and eight-figure contracts can, virtually overnight, become enthusiastic investors in high-end real estate… But their eyes are often bigger than their wallets, and their shopping sprees to pick up properties often get them into financial trouble, particularly after their playing days are over.
“You are never going to make more money speculating on real estate than scoring touchdowns,” Mr. Abrams says he tells his clients. “You should put your money into something boring and safe, like a bond portfolio….”
I have been saying for years that athletes and actors should have a turnkey Oil City Plan ready to go at a moment’s notice. Done right, a decent OCP doesn’t cost but a quarter-mil. Or at the very least, make sure those grand digs are paid off so you can sell and downsize to a simpler life, as Hulk Hogan (good for him) has been doing.
Ya know….. you recklessly and carelessly talk about large sums of money…. You remind me of the clueless unemployed fools I overhead saying in 2005 “we’re going move to Tahiti. We just got back and we love it. We’re going back and we’re going to build a hotel on the ocean.”
Nothing like being a debt-junkie huh?
I mentioned here before (2007-ish) that I lived near Rasheed Wallace’s pad here in Portland. Rasheed Wallace hasn’t played for Portland for 8 years. At that time it had been for sale for a few years. It’s still for sale at more than $2M more than comps and the rumor was that every suggestion to lower the price was refused. Meanwhile, taxes paid on it last year were $43k.
Five Injured in Accidental Shootings at Gun Shows on “Gun Appreciation Day”
As thousands of pro-gun activists held rallies across the United States on Saturday, accidental shootings at three different guns shows illustrated the obvious: Being around lots of people carrying firearms can be a tad dangerous. The Associated Press compiles the reports from North Carolina, Indiana and Ohio.
In Raleigh, a shotgun went off when the owner was taking it out of its case at a security checkpoint, injuring three people. In Indianapolis, a 54-year-old man appears to have accidentally shot himself in the hand as he was leaving a gun show. And in Ohio, a dealer was checking out a purchase when he pulled the trigger by accident and injured his friend. Although he had removed the magazine from the weapon, a round remained in the chamber.
I feel safer already!
‘Five Injured in Accidental Shootings at Gun Shows on “Gun Appreciation Day”’
Did they fail to have gun-toting guards present at the events where these incidents occurred?
The AP included this unrelated “news” in their coverage of the hundreds of pro-gun, pro-2nd amendment, anti-Obama rallies on Saturday.
Straight out of the coastal elitist talking point playbook (which doesn’t apply to Mayor Bloomberg and Senator Feinstein, they’re like, exempt, or some kind of sh*t).
See also Bloomberg article we posted today about increase in murders in gun-free Chicago.
And remember kidz, when seconds count, the police are only minutes away!
One thing I find confusing is that the ‘debate’ on gun ownership seems to try to squeeze every American into one of two boxes: Either you are a pro-gun-ownership, 2nd Amendment proponent, or else you want to help Obama take away everyone’s guns so the statists/progressives can eliminate all grass-roots opposition.
As usual, I fit into neither strawman category of the opposing camps of angry extremists. It seems like there must be a middle ground where sane people with legitimate reasons to own guns (hunters, law enforcement, collectors, etc) can rest assured that jackbooted thugs won’t show up at their doorsteps to take their guns away, yet angry, homicidal, unstable types can’t walk into a gun shop and purchase a Bushmaster with no background check.
I do get a bit worried about how regulators would consider someone “fit” to own a gun. I’ve heard some people say they agree everyone who isn’t sane should not own, but I do not consider something like, say, OCD to be a category where you are more likely to harm someone (many people consider any diagnosis “insane”). Even PTSD is questionable unless a person has a psychotic episode, which usually do not last terribly long. Actually, the people that many seem to think are the most violent (think schizophrenic) are many times so low functioning, they wouldn’t even be able to handle a gun if they owned it.
CIBT, aren’t you already required a background check to own a gun? Sorry if that seems like a silly question, but I’ve never even held a gun before.
I’m in the same boat; not a gun owner, never been interested. But I have friends who are hunters, cops, military personnel, etc, and understand their concern about getting caught up in a wave of anti-gun-ownership regulations that fail to discriminate between legitimate and illegitimate gun ownership.
I’m actually interested in hunting, but I’m afraid I might accidentally shoot myself. Yeah, I don’t really want to get caught up in anti gun regulations, either.
It’s interesting that crime has gone way down in the past few decades here, but because of media sensationalism, people think it’s worse than ever.
“I’m actually interested in hunting, but I’m afraid I might accidentally shoot myself.”
If you ever try it, I suggest you avoid choosing politicians as hunting partners.
Yeah, I’m not in the mood to turn into the target.
“CIBT, aren’t you already required a background check to own a gun?”
Background check is required for purchases in gun stores. No check is required for private sales including dealers at gun shows. So, if you want to buy a gun and worry that you wouldn’t pass a background check, you just have to pick your venue.
‘I’m afraid I might accidentally shoot myself’
I can save you some time and money. Don’t bother because if you feel this way, you aren’t going to hit what you are shooting at anyway.
‘if you want to buy a gun and worry that you wouldn’t pass a background check, you just have to pick your venue’
‘Biden to NRA: We ‘don’t have the time’ to prosecute gun buyers who lie on background checks
but I’m afraid I might accidentally shoot myself.
Sheesh, you can get training, you know? There’s lots of it out there, everywhere.
I fear gun regulations fostered by people who are afraid of guns per se and don’t believe anyone else but *experts* can handle them.
“I fear gun regulations fostered by people who are afraid of guns per se and don’t believe anyone else but *experts* can handle them.”
Now that’s just dumb. Make the time. Yea it will cost money. That’s what our taxes are for.
Even PTSD is questionable unless a person has a psychotic episode, which usually do not last terribly long.
How “terribly long” does it take to shoot up a high school?
How “terribly long” does it take to shoot up a high school?
A lot longer than it takes to blow one up with dynamite, as happened in Bath Michigan in 1927.
“but I do not consider something like, say, OCD to be a category where you are more likely to harm someone (many people consider any diagnosis “insane”)”
Having spent quite a bit of time around M16s professionally, and heard a lot of stories over the decades about “accidents”, I’d propose that OCD victims are the ideal gun owners. “Is the safety still on? Is the chamber still empty?” 10 seconds later “Is the safety still on? Is the chamber still empty?” repeat the whole time they’re climbing over a fence or cleaning their weapon or training or hunting or whatever. “My kids are playing in the room with the gun safe, did I remember to lock the gun safe?” 10 seconds later “Did I remember to lock the gun safe?” repeat, etc. It sucks to be them, but at least they’re safe and so is everyone around them.
Complacency never breeds safety anywhere else, either.
My suspicion is “crazy” would be very promptly defined as donating to the wrong political action committee, posting on the wrong blogs (like this one), having the wrong political opinions, not paying bribes “donations” to the right people, classic USSR-style mental health diagnosis.
‘My suspicion is “crazy” would be very promptly defined as donating to the wrong political action committee,…’
Now I know why I never, ever get impaneled on a jury, no matter how often I get called up for service (once a year for close to twenty years…).
yet angry, homicidal, unstable types can’t walk into a gun shop and purchase a Bushmaster with no background check.
Since this is against the law (actually many laws) already you should be happy and satisfied with the current state of gun control.
Or was it just a straw man argument?
We all know who “gun control” leads with democrats and liberals in charge.
We just need some “common sense” gun control. Close a few loopholes. We need to do “something”.
And then, one day we end up like DC, NYC, Chicago, etc. where the average citizens (unless politically connected) is banned from owning any type of firearms and the democrat politicians are talking knife control and air rifle control.
Gun control is not about guns. It is about control.
“Or was it just a straw man argument?”
As the undisputed HBB champion in that area, I leave it to you to figure it out for yourself.
“Gun control is not about guns. It is about control.”
I can glimpse a great example of this out of the corner of my eye right now. Dad is watching the inauguration proceedings, where I have little doubt that a great abundance of guns is on hand in case needed to maintain control.
hunters, cops, military personnel, etc, and understand their concern about getting caught up in a wave of anti-gun-ownership regulations that fail to discriminate between legitimate and illegitimate gun ownership.
According to the 2nd Amendment and American tradition, legitimate gun ownership is not limited to hunters, cops, collectors, military personal etc.
That’s the whole point.
I would say a good solution is to make background checks mandatory at all gun shows too. A gun show should not be like a guitar show in the ease of buying a gun or guitar. Amo and accessories maybe, but guns no.
re: coastal elitist talking point playbook…
It always amuses me so much that the media call Martin Luther King. Dr. Martin Luthan King. Generally those who have doctorates even earned ones (rather than honorary) don’t use the title except in professional / academic papers. Did you ever ever ever hear the main stream media call Ralph Reed, first executive director the Christian Coalition, Dr. Ralph Reed?
They do use ‘Dr’ in church, which is where MLK got started.
And when an armed idiot is on the room, keep your head down!
‘when an armed idiot is on the room, keep your head down’
‘All nine people who suffered gunshot wounds outside the Empire State Buiding Friday morning were hit by police gunfire, Police Commsisione Raymond W. Kelly said Saturday. Citing ballistics evidence, Kelly said that it looks like three of the nine bystanders were hit with bullets, while the rest were “struck with fragments of some sort,” reports the New York Times. Three of the victims remained hospitalized Saturday but were in stable condition.’
‘Video released late Friday (embedded below) shows how the police officers opened fire on Jeffrey Johnson as soon as he pointed a .45-caliber pistol at them on the sidewalk. One officer fired seven times, the other nine times. Neither had ever fired their weapon on patrol before, reports the Associated Press. Although witnesses had initially said Johnson had fired at the officers, Kelly said it looks like he never fired his gun after shooting and killing a former colleague.’
Well, that is about 30 LESS dead and 100 less wounded than in gun-free Chicago where it is almost impossible for a citizen to own a gun legally…
If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.
Wouldn’t the cops have guns, too? Or is that your point?
I know a PD who can tell some great real-life stories to support it. Like the one about the cop who decided to go elk hunting in his Denver backyard…
There are officers who just don’t put in their range time and can’t hit the broad side of a barn.
And the government.
Waco 1993 coming soon to USA 2013
Jack-booted thugs coming soon to a neighborhood near you…
“Waco 1993 coming soon to USA 2013″
but colin powell just told me on the news tv that my governement is not coming after me?
This is such a joke. It turns out that the rest of the first world has already tested the, “If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.”, argument. The statistics are undeniable. The US ranks behind these countries in firearm death rate: Azerbaijan, Japan, South Korea, Qatar, Mauritious, Hong Kong, Romania, Singapore, Poland, the UK, Ukraine, Belarus, Taiwan, Netherlands, Spain, Uzbekistan, Cyprus, Hungary, India, Kyrgystan, Ireland, Australia, Moldova, Germany, Iceland, Kuwait, Italy, Bulgaria, Latvia, Denmark, Sweden, Greece, Georgia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Portugal, Norway, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Israel, Peru, Canada, Malta, Belgium, Slovenia, Estonia, New Zealand, Austria, France, Barbados, Croatia, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Finland, Switzerland, Serbia, Zimbabwe, Argentina, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Montenegro, South Africa, the Phillipines, and Chile.
This is not a complete list, but it’s ridiculous. This list factors in gun deaths as a percentage of the population. Whether only outlaws own guns or not is moot. You are still safer in countries that have strict gun controls or a downright ban. There is only one argument for guns that makes any sense, and that is that the founding fathers wanted us to be able to overthrow our own government if need be, and even that no longer makes sense.
Stop trying to speak common sense to NRA members!
These countries/cities have nearly complete bans on guns for its citizens.
Please tell me how safe they are:
And yet Switzerland where near every household has an automatic assault weapon has a low crime rate…
I also notice you only cherry pick death from firearms. Because all other homicides just don’t count. And because it makes the USA a relatively safe place statistically and doesn’t fit into your gun ban utopia world.
From history - what do all these countries have in common?
Pol Pot’s Cambodia
There is only one argument for guns that makes any sense, and that is that the founding fathers wanted us to be able to overthrow our own government if need be, and even that no longer makes sense.
Another argument is for gun ownership is freedom, another is liberty, another is American tradition, another is protection.
The “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns” argument makes more sense in America because we have so many guns - 300 million as opposed to Brazils 15 million.
There’s no way you’d ever get enough guns out of America that the outlaws would not still have a ton of them.
What the left loves to omit from their crusade against private firearms ownership is that in all the countries that banned or outright confiscated firearms, including the UK and Australia, violent crime rose after the bans. Yes, deaths from firearms may have gone down eventually, but violent crime, robbery, home invasions, assaults, rapes, etc, increased.
The latest data show crime in the UK remains higher than the US, even after the complete ban of handguns:
The United Kingdom has a total recorded crime rate per capita of approximately 85 per 1000 people; the United States of America records approximately 80.[ "Total crimes (per capita) by country. Definition, graph and map". Nationmaster.com. 2011-05-15]
Yes, the clockwork orange impact. The homicide rates also include the justified homicides which occur more in the gun societies and killing the bad guys does not bother me.
“You are still safer in countries that have strict gun controls or a downright ban.”
Hi Was Renting in Newport!
I am excited to see your post. You would be a perfect candidate for my “GUN FREE HOME” yard signs, just let me know where to ship them and I will tell you how to arrange payment.
Also, you may want to check out the immigration policies of those countries you mention, I hear Zimbabwe and Nicaragua are fabulous places to raise a family. Perhaps you should begin filing the paperwork.
Can you imagine living in Zimbabwe, Nicaragua or some of those other sh.t holes unarmed?
LOL. The one accusing others of cherry picking does some picking of cherries himself, while not addressing what was said. Hmm…
“GUN FREE HOME” sign?
None for me, thanks. Stop deflecting.
The vast majority of Chicago murders are gang-related. Most of the newsworthy ones involve drive-by shootings and innocent victims caught in gang crossfire. None of which would be affected by law-abiding citizens having guns.
“gang-related” = code for “black kids selling dope.”
Montana its not racist if its true……
So why aren’t we putting those TSA body scanners in all public housing projects?
Its taxpayers money….there are 10 year waiting lists for public housing….so you dont want to be scanned?? move and pay your own rent.
Hispanic gangs too. Gangs are quite segregated along ethnic lines. An interesting consequence of the successful effort to put gang ringleaders in prison is the current absence of authority at the top to keep the rank and file members in line. This has actually led to an increase in gun violence, as once-large, powerful and (relatively) controlled gangs have split into numerous smaller gangs that prey upon each other.
I am worried about the Amish Mafia. Who knew that weird Al was right?
The basic catch-22 with firearms is that the more guns in the hands of the law abiding, the more guns in the hands of the criminals.
I agree laws and platitudes don’t work as criminals are unswayed by them. What would work is reducing the manufacture of these devices.
However, additionally, as we’ve seen with the subway pushings and random stabbings and the like, it is imperative that the maniacally homicidal be identified and institutionalized.
What would work is reducing the manufacture of these devices.
I don’t think so. The supply is already there. USA is awash in guns.
True story that occurred a few years ago: It’s about 9pm at the Downtown Crossing MBTA station in Boston. I had worked late and was heading home… which meant taking the T from downtown Boston to Quincy Adams station in Quincy where I parked. I sit down on a bench at the end of the platform, next to a pretty white girl, probably in her late 20’s.
An obviously drunk, belligerent black guy, dressed like a thug and drinking from a 40 walks over and starts harassing the girl sitting next to me. She is obviously uncomfortable with the situation and keeps repeating for the man to leave her alone. There are no MBTA police around and this guy is right in her face. So what do I do? I put the novel I was reading back in my gym bag and tell the drunk thug to take a hike, as the girl isn’t interested. I never actually got up off the bench and I didn’t raise my voice.
This elicits shouts, vulgarities and threats from the thug, to include brandishing his bottle in a threatening manner. The girl, who was previously the center of the thug’s attention, is now crying and begging the guy to go away. I finally stand up and move to within about a foot of the thug. Again, without raising my voice, I tell him if he doesn’t get the hell away from me and the girl, that I’m going to beat him to within an inch of his life. He continues to threaten and swear and generally be belligerent , but comes no closer to us.
Eventually the next train appears and we get on. The drunk stays on the platform, shouting and threatening. Once the doors close and there is no longer any threat, the girl, still crying and distraught, says “Thank you”. I put myself in personal danger to help a stranger who couldn’t help herself. Whether or not my actions actually saved her from harm is debatable, but I’m not the type to stand by and let an innocent girl be accosted by a thug.
What’s the lesson? What’s the moral of this story? I’m not sure… other than to say that there is evil in the world and no amount of laws, regulation, or restrictions will prevent that. All that stands between that evil and innocents are those who aren’t afraid to stand up for what’s right, regardless of the risk.
All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing - Edmund Burke
What’s the moral of this story? I’m not sure… other than to say that there is evil in the world and no amount of laws, regulation, or restrictions will prevent that.
One moral is that you lived to tell the tale. It could have turned out quite differently, and the rest of us would never know the difference.
It could have turned out quite differently, and the rest of us would never know the difference.
The thing is, it never entered my mind not to do something. That’s not how I’m wired and it’s not how I was raised. These days, it’s just as likely the bad guys travel in groups as travel alone. Take the same situation as I described and add two or three assailants as opposed to one and the situation becomes much more dangerous and unpredictable. Would I still intervene? Yes. One difference for sure, today I conceal-carry…
a brave man that day
“All that stands between that evil and innocents are those who aren’t afraid to stand up for what’s right, regardless of the risk.”
Kudos to you for standing up for what is right at a moment of need.
I have a very similar story from my past which, quite coincidentally, I shared with my parents for the first time just today, a couple of decades after it happened. I won’t go through all the details, but suffice it to say that under quite similar circumstances, I took an action which in retrospect could have resulted in me getting seriously injured or killed, had the perpetrator attacked me instead of running away. I was also walking in a group when the situation ensued, but moments later was the left alone to face the decision whether to take the necessary action to prevent a serious crime.
One never knows how they will react in an unanticipated moment of crisis. I am glad to know in retrospect that I was willing to risk my life to stand up for the right at a critical moment.
There are people who are not insane, they just don’t give a crap about anyone else. That Menendez woman who shoved the Muslim in front of the train, case in point. What to do with them, before they act out?
What to do with them, before they act out?
Keep an eye out for them, not much else you can do. Not even the mental health people know the answer to your question.
“Five Injured in Accidental Shootings at Gun Shows on “Gun Appreciation Day”
Irony, how does it work?
“Five Injured in Accidental Shootings at Gun Shows on “Gun Appreciation Day””
What is your interest in other people’s business? Why do you look for any excuse to disarm America?
People getting shot at public events is everyone’s business.
No it’s not, you make it your business because you want to deprive people of liberty any chance you get. The affects nobody but those involved, a few people had AD’s, it happens. Mind you own business.
Sadly, my Joshua Tree Extension is not working today, so I am having a harder-than-usual time ignoring your posts.
“Mind you own business.”
My blinding 75+wpm typing speed sometimes has a glitch. Got grammar police?
A public event is not everyone’s business?
Wow. Can you even hear yourself?
Yes, I hear just fine. If you were not there, it’s not your business. You are free to know about the events that transpired and to make your own decision about attending a gun show. Hundreds of thousands of people went to multiple GAD events, unfortunately accidental discharges happen and hopefully serve as a wake up call for increased safety measures…not a gun show ban.
“not a gun show ban.”
No one suggested or implied that. One can accept and appreciate gun shows for what they are and still appreciate the irony of people getting shot at them.
Well Pete, I agree with you.
“If you were not there, it’s not your business.”
That’s an unbelievably selfish perspective, which speaks volumes about where your posts come from.
Sorry CIBT, you can’t cherry pick my statement, its four lines above this post. And there is that word “selfish”, I guess minding one’s own business is not contributing to the greater good of the collective…eh comrade?
unfortunately accidental discharges happen
The only happen to people too irresponsible to follow basic gun safety.
I learned how to avoid them 100% of the time when I took a gun safety course as a child.
There is no excuse for accidental discharges.
I agree prime, I am very safe with my few weapons. I have a sand bucket in the garage to clear my pistol each and every time I come home after carrying concealed.
I hate being around anyone who is being unsafe with firearms. Gun safety courses are great and everyone should take one.
I guess I should have said Negligent Discharge…or ND’s
Indeed. And since we know that fully half the population has a below average IQ, in the interest of public safety, we should have a minimum intelligence for all gun permit holders…
See where I’m going with this?
If you look at the correlation between maps of gun violence and maps of voting patterns it would appear that the best thing we could do to reduce violence would be to ban firearms for all registered Ds. Correlation is a funny thing.
As hitting weddings with drones should be.
I don’t know what the commotion is on guns themselves. The Feds know they can’t take them. Gun owners aren’t going to give them up.
Right after the Connecticut shooting, I mentioned some aspects of modern life in the US that makes violence seem OK. Like comparing the movie Dirty Harry to Kill Bill. Then there’s torture, which was recently glamorized by a movie. Even here, people justify killing innocent children by drone. Not one or two wackos, but several people. We’ve moved the bar as to what is acceptable behavior.
We just got involved in another war this week! Most people don’t bat an eye at this now. The US government is ‘arming rebels’ in Syria, and the people we’re arming cut peoples heads off and post it on youtube. Or line prisoners up and shoot them by the dozens. And we now have more US war veterans killing themselves stateside than are dieing in combat.
We don’t just glamorize violence and killing, we’re blowing people to pieces in 5 or 6 distant countries almost every day. The Feds pushed and funded a militarization of the drug war that has turned parts of Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala into a nightmare of violence. Unspeakable stuff. I could go on.
We aren’t going to pass a law and change this situation (if it can be changed). But one place we could start is for the US government to stop acting like citizens are the enemy. Stop turning this country into a police state. Bending every civil right, spying on everybody, putting drones in the sky. We lived for a long time without this crap and we don’t need it now. It’s just making people more nervous. And then when this calms down, maybe we could start addressing this violence that has saturated our lives.
“As hitting weddings with drones should be.”
Even my bleeding-heart-libruhl former Obama campaign worker sister can agree with you on that.
We have not learned a thing from the blowback in Algeria and Mali from helping the Islamists overthrow Qhadafi.
But they have figured out that they can get away with not allowing any more of certain models to be sold. So they take what they can get. And then Ds for decades afterwards wonder why they can’t get people to vote for their party even when it’s in their best economic interest.
The Feds know they can’t take them. Gun owners aren’t going to give them up.
From what I can tell, the Democrat-run states are taking a long-term view of this: NY’s recent legislation grandfathers in firearms that were legal in NY prior to the new legislation, but restricts the sales of the those firearms to “out-of-state” only. It is no longer legal to sell those firearms to another person within NY. What that means is families will not be able to pass down those firearms at death or just as a matter of course (previously a simple matter of a private transfer between valid license holders).
I don’t know about anyone else, but the idea of turning my children into felons because I left “legally-owned” firearms to them in my will and as part of my estate makes me cringe. It shows the depths that the liberals will go to chip away at the 2nd Amendment. Based on this new law, in NY, those grandfathered firearms would have to be sold out-of-state.
To me, this is no different than confiscation… they may not be coming for my firearms today (though they are coming for my magazines), but they won’t let those firearms exist, at least in NY and soon MA, past my lifetime… the Dem’s took Charlton Heston’s words at face value and are going to take those guns out of our “cold, dead hands”.
Thank God for states like New Hampshire, Wyoming, and Texas…
The first salvo in the current gun control war was fired by Governor Ronald Reagan when he restricted sales and right-to-carry in California. So how about we knock it off with the “liberals took my guns” bs?
I thought the first salvo was in the 30s? But the point about Reagan is valid. The Rs aren’t really friends of the 2nd Amendment. They’re just a little less bad on average. W would have happily signed an extension in 2004.
Comment by Ben Jones
I don’t know what the commotion is on guns themselves. The Feds know they can’t take them. Gun owners aren’t going to give them up.
Because if the Feds tried to ban guns, the states would simply turn all the NRA members into members of the state militia.
Or the Sheriff could deputise all the gun owners…
We ban guns on airplanes. I don’t hear much uproar about that. An accidental discharge at 30K ft could result in rapid decompression of the airplane. ISTM that some restrictions are reasonable.
“An accidental discharge at 30K ft could result in rapid decompression of the airplane.”
Only in the movies.
Even in “good” neighborhoods they have drive-by fruitings.
Search On For Drive-By Fruit-Throwing Vandal Who Damaged Cars In New Rochelle
17 Vehicles Pelted By Pumpkins, Papayas, Pineapples; Residents Perplexed
January 20, 2013 6:57 PM
NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Police in New Rochelle on Sunday were searching for a vandal who has damaged numerous vehicles by hurling fruit at them.
As 1010 WINS’ Gene Michaels reports, the vandal has damaged at least 17 vehicles in the drive by fruit-throwings – nine of them early Sunday morning.
“I’m not happy this happened in this neighborhood,” said one resident, Scott. “I mean you know, this is a good neighborhood, and it’s not something that we like to see around here.”
http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/01/20/search-on-for-vandal-who-hurled-fruit-damaged-cars-in-new-rochelle/ - 88k -
Sounds like a good case for more fruit control.
Probably a turf war between the vegetarians and the fruitarians.
LOL. Fruitarians took it too far…
Plus points for alliteration.
Fruit doesn’t dent vehicles. People dent vehicles.
There were a lot more scumbag kids back in the day.
What were the “Smashing Pumpkins” rock group named after anyway?
Orange you glad I didn’t say “knock knock”?
Where do you get pumpkins in January??
Properly stored, pumpkins keep all winter.
“How to defend yourself against fruit” (Python skit)
MK’s tutorial in contract law.
Are happy daze here again?
Davos Doom Loses to Merkel-Draghi as Euro Defies Roubini
By Simon Kennedy - Jan 20, 2013 5:01 PM MT
Dr. Doom got it wrong.
The parade of economists and investors led by Nouriel Roubini predicting Greece’s ejection by now from the euro zone failed to appreciate the resolve of European policy makers to protect their union and the amount of pain Greeks are willing to stomach.
“People underestimated these factors,” Roubini, chairman of New York-based Roubini Global Economics LLC, said in a telephone call 12 months after predicting Greece’s exit in remarks to the 2012 World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. A Greek departure “is certainly a less likely event this year, although not a zero probability.”
Joining him in questioning whether the 17-nation euro region was built to last and declaring Greece’s departure imminent, inevitable or in its interest were hedge-fund manager John Paulson, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. President Gary Cohn, Nobel laureates Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz, Pacific Investment Management Co. Chief Executive Officer Mohamed El- Erian, Kenneth Rogoff and Martin Feldstein of Harvard University and Citigroup Inc. chief economist Willem Buiter.
Roubini — who earned his nickname for correctly predicting the 2008 global financial crisis — Cohn, Rogoff and Stiglitz are among the skeptics returning this week to the Alpine conference as investors pull back bets against the euro and signal the worst of the three-year debt crisis has passed.
If the Greeks think they’re better off as a colony of the wealthy Northern European core, power to them. A bit surprising but I suspect the Greeks know themselves and their governments better than outside observers.
Global Economic Crisis: Europe Slides Deeper into Recession
By Stefan Steinberg
January 17, 2013
According to figures released Monday by the European Union statistics agency, Eurostat, industrial output across the 17 countries of the euro zone fell in November for the third successive month.
The 0.3 percent decline for November was worse than forecast by financial analysts, who had anticipated a slight recovery. Compared to the same month in 2011, industrial production in the euro zone was down by 3.7 percent.
Separate figures released Monday revealed that Europe’s biggest economy, Germany, suffered a sharp contraction in the final quarter of 2012. The German economy, which accounts for 28 percent of all gross domestic product (GDP) in the euro zone, contracted by 0.5 percent. This slashed Germany’s growth rate for all of 2012 to just 0.7 percent, down sharply from the country’s growth rate of 3.0 percent in 2011.
The most significant expression of the economic downturn in Germany is the slump in investment by German companies in plant and machinery. Despite benchmark interest rates close to zero as set by the European Central Bank, investment in plant and machinery fell by 4.1 per cent during 2012. This compares to a 7.3 percent growth in such investment one year earlier.
In line with the latest figures, the German government has cut its forecast for economic growth in 2013 from an already meager 1.0 percent to just 0.4 percent.
The decline in investment in plant and machinery is the clearest indication that German executives expect the contraction in the country’s key economic markets in Europe to continue and deepen. German exports to Europe declined by 2.0 percent in 2012. A full-scale disaster was prevented only by increased German exports to North America, Mexico and the Far East.
Germany’s export industry is also threatened by the rise in the value of the euro, which has gained 8 percent against the US dollar in the past six months. At a meeting of business leaders in Luxembourg at the start of this week, the outgoing head of euro-area finance ministers, Jean-Claude Juncker, expressed concern over the rise in the value of the euro for European exports.
Germany is currently the only major European country to be experiencing even a minimal level of growth. According to figures from the French Central Bank, the continent’s second largest economy, France, barely avoided sinking officially into recession by posting 0.1 growth in the third quarter of 2012. In both the second and fourth quarters the national economy contracted.
Inside the euro zone itself, seven countries are officially in recession, with Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy mired in deep slumps. Outside the euro zone, Great Britain is expected to slide into a “triple dip” recession in 2013.
The increasingly precarious nature of the European economy is underscored by the situation of one of its key industries—auto. Although some German companies, in particular Volkswagen, were able to expand their sales in some parts of the world, auto markets in Europe are shrinking dramatically. VW sales dropped by 6.5 percent in Western Europe, excluding Germany.
The boom this time
Jan 21st 2013, 16:40 by R.A. | WASHINGTON
IT IS a holiday in America and inauguration day (ceremonial, anyway) and as good a time as any for reflection on what might be ahead for the American economy. Bill McBride has two good posts laying out a case for optimism and spotting possible sources of recession. I suppose I’ll add my two cents.
The case for cautious bullishness on the American economy is strong. For the moment, it looks as though America will avoid a damaging fiscal showdown and a major fiscal policy contraction, both of which were considered major threats to the 2013 outlook. This isn’t a sure thing, but the outlook is much better than it was a few months ago. Meanwhile, several key cyclical drags on the economy are in the process of switching to positions of support: state and local spending and investment and residential investment. Foreseeable external threats—euro collapse and a hard Chinese landing—seem less worrying now than they have over the past two years. American households have made significant progress deleveraging. Perhaps most encouragingly, the Federal Reserve continues its evolution toward a policy of explicit “catch-up” toward the pre-crisis path of the price level and/or nominal output level. We’ll have to see exactly what amount of catch-up the Fed is prepared to tolerate, but some is better than none, which is what appeared to be on offer a year or two ago.
As a result, I think it’s reasonable to expect a baseline growth performance this year a bit above trend, close to 3%, which would be a marked acceleration from the 2010-2012 period. Projecting farther into the future is a mug’s game, but I see reasons for optimism. America’s energy industry for one. An end to the adjustment to rapid Chinese industrialisation for another. An immigration reform that makes it easier for workers to move to America, especially those with high skill levels, seems achievable. And underlying technological progress looks healthy relative to the post-1970 trend, if not quite as strong as in the late 1990s. There are headwinds, demographic and fiscal, but also tailwinds.
What about the threats to American growth? As Mr McBride notes, there is always the risk, though small, of a big and unexpected disaster: geopolitical, seismic, climatic, or otherwise. Both more plausible and more foreseeable, though still fairly unlikely, is the possibility of a major policy error or political crisis in Europe or perhaps China. Continuing the move toward greater probabilities takes us to a resource shock: a major supply disruption of oil or some other commodity.
A domestic political mistake is receding as a major economic threat, though it is not gone entirely. A big fiscal shock or a debt-ceiling error that shook financial markets could endanger the current expansion. It would take a substantial shock to push the economy into recession, however.
Can you pls post longer articles?
I’ll do my best.
ft dot com
January 21, 2013 11:16 pm
Republicans seek to avoid debt backlash
By Alan Rappeport in Washington
Republicans in the House of Representatives on Monday introduced a bill to extend temporarily the debt limit, avoiding a confrontation with President Barack Obama amid concerns that they would face a backlash for steering the US government towards default.
The House will vote on Wednesday on the bill, which would “ensure complete and timely payment of the obligations of the United States government” until May 19. The Treasury has been using “extraordinary” measures to pay its bills since the $16.4tn debt ceiling was technically reached at the end of last year.
Eric Cantor, House majority leader, signalled last week that Republicans were ready to pass an extension of the debt limit.
“This is the first step to get on the right track, reduce our deficit and get focused on creating better living conditions for our families and children,” Mr Cantor said following a two-day Republican retreat. “It’s time to come together and get to work.”
‘It’s time to come together and “borrow more money”!
Yes. the reluctant spenders arms have been twisted in DC. They give up; “OK we’ll borrow and spend with no limit”. Deficits don’t matter, Reagan proved that.
What a ridiculous dog and pony show.
“(Borrowing more money) is the first step to get on the right track, reduce our deficit and get focused on creating better living conditions for our families and children,”
Did he actually say that out loud?
Although, I suppose he does have a point compared with much higher interest rates that would accompany the lack of an extension. From that perspective he’s a genius for “reducing” the deficit!
Buy gold now, or miss out on the debt ceiling showdown rally!
Anyone who believes they understand how the scenario described below leads to a gold rally, please share.
Goldman Forecasts Gold Rally Amid Debt-Ceiling Confrontation
By Glenys Sim - Jan 21, 2013 2:43 AM MT
Gold may climb over the next three months as U.S. lawmakers attempt to tackle the country’s debt ceiling and the world’s largest economy slows, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said, advising investors to place bets on advances.
“We see current prices as a good entry point to re- establish fresh longs,” analysts Damien Courvalin and Alec Phillips wrote in a Jan. 18 report. The bank reiterated a three- month target of $1,825 an ounce, as well as a forecast for prices to weaken in the second half as the U.S. economy rebounds.
Gold fell 5.5 percent last quarter, the worst performance since 2008, on expectations for a recovery and potential end to central bank stimulus in the U.S. An advance to $1,825 would be consistent with rallies into debt-ceiling decisions, the analysts wrote. Since 1960, Congress has raised or revised the debt limit 79 times, according to the Treasury Department.
“The uncertainty associated with these issues, combined with our economists’ forecast for weak U.S. GDP growth in the first half of 2013 following the negative impact of higher taxes will push gold” to the three-month target, they wrote.
Gold, which rallied for a 12th year in 2012, traded at $1,688.50 an ounce on the Comex at 5:40 p.m. in Singapore. Holdings in exchange-traded products reached a record last month, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Most-active prices last traded above $1,825 an ounce in September 2011.
Anyone who believes they understand how the scenario described below leads to a gold rally, please share.
Gold often times rallies this time of year until about May. Central banks are also buying gold and the public is buying gold coins up by a factor of 10 from a decade ago. Gold has had a steady run-up for 12 years. That is quite a base to maintain or to build upon.
Leftists are expected to hate gold because gold is a vote against government funny money. You being in favor of gold is like me going into Santa Monica and hob nobbing with the Democrat Party.
Is there any chance the debt ceiling showdown will get called off this time? If so, by Goldman Sachs’ own logic, would this lead to a gold price crash?
Sounds like the Congressional Republicans decided to pitch a curve ball.
This week: House gears up for debt ceiling votes
By Peter Schroeder - 01/21/13 05:25 AM ET
This week’s economic slate will be headlined by House Republican efforts to bring up a short-term debt limit increase in an effort to pressure the Senate into adopting a budget.
House Republicans announced Friday that they would be considering legislation that would authorize a three-month increase to the debt limit, setting the stage for future battles over budgets and spending. They said a longer-term debt limit increase would be contingent on the Senate adopting a budget that cuts spending. In addition, the House GOP will be pushing legislation that would halt pay for members of Congress if a budget were not adopted.
Following the unveiling of this proposal, House Republicans postponed plans to take up a bill reinstating a pay freeze for federal employees, which was slated for a vote sometime this week. President Obama reinstated raises for federal employees and members of Congress last year, and lawmakers already eliminated the pay hike for Congress as part of the “fiscal cliff” agreement.
a three-month increase to the debt limit
Followed by what, exactly?
Followed by what, exactly? More increases in the debt limit, to infinity and beyond.
Since 1960, Congress has raised or revised the debt limit 79 times, according to the Treasury Department.
I’ll admit I had no idea it had been raised this many times.
“I’ll admit I had no idea it had been raised this many times.”
This time is different.
Gold is seen as a somewhat reliable store of value.
With the US debt to GDP ratio at 100%, and the Fed actively stoking inflation fears, and with a negative real interest rate (interest rate - inflation rate) on currrency savings, people are trying to move into assets.
On the one hand though, inflation is not a given. And it would be very politically costly for a lot of politicians. On the other hand, economics is the dismal science. Not really a science despite all the mathematical equations and graphs. So, with all the novel interventions by the Fed and government, a fear is that inflation could get away from them and spiral out of control… And the damnable thing is, the Fed and government may well want this to happen to reduce their debt burden in real terms.
While the way to stop a hyperinflation is well-known - stop printing - there may be a period of intentional inaction till that happens.
However… a hyperinflationary scenario would also reduce profitability of the banks and the de facto unstated core mandate of the Fed is to protect the profitability of the banks.
But, there is uncertainty. And so - gold as a hedge in case the SHTF.
As far as the price targets go, like stock price targets solemnly intoned by analysts during the tech bubble, they’re talking out of their butts. An 8.1% price change seems more scholarly and reliable than simply saying they think a round 10% increase is coming, which seems safe. They’ll be sort-of right till the moment they’re dramatically wrong, as is the case with most if not all market analysts.
Humans have demanded oracles since time immemorial.
“What are they seeing that I’m not?” Probably nothing, but place your bets and take your chances.
“With the US debt to GDP ratio at 100%, and the Fed actively stoking inflation fears, and with a negative real interest rate (interest rate - inflation rate) on currrency savings, people are trying to move into assets.”
Suppose the Fed fails to follow through on the inflation creation plan which it is inadvertently signaling through its recent statements and actions. Isn’t it a given that gold prices will crater and the dollar will strengthen at that point?
And the last time I checked, the U.S. said it has a ’strong dollar policy.’ Albeit it has been a long time since I paid any attention to that rhetoric…
The talk of ending the bond buying prematurely is certainly anti-inflationary, but it also reflects some fear that they may have hints that it might be hard to close Pandora’s box.
Recall what Lacker said:
“We’re at the limits of our understanding of how monetary policy affects the economy,” Mr. Lacker said in a recent interview in his office atop the bank’s skyscraper here. “Sometimes when you test the limits you find out where the limits are by breaking through and going too far.”
This is a rare admission, but could also be part of an orchestrated effort to boost inflation fears.
“On the other hand, economics is the dismal science. Not really a science despite all the mathematical equations and graphs.”
-You are spot on, economics is really the study of mass psychology. Money is worthless unless it is supported by trust of the users. Gold is a measure of how little or much we trust fiat money. Always keep enough gold on hand to bribe the boarder guards.
Maybe but I doubt it. There is a lot more going in the big world than just the Kabuki theatre of American politics and economic “policy”.
You seem to have lost sight of the fact that the world market gold price is still denominated in $US.
It’s an understandable error for a gold bull to make…
That is only one of many factors in the gold price. I can buy gold with Euros or my colorful Brazilian notes in my pocket.
The currency aspect only drives the gold train part of the time and the currency aspect has not been the main driver the past 12 years.
January 20, 2013, 12:19 p.m. ET
Money Managers Bet on Debt-Limit Deal
By CYNTHIA LIN
As the U.S. inches closer to its debt limit, some money managers see a buying opportunity in short-end Treasurys.
The debt-ceiling deadline, a point at which the government will run out of money unless lawmakers agree to increase the debt cap, is expected around March 1. Without a deal, there will be disruptions in certain day-to-day government operations and possible delays to bill payments.
Ahead of this, some short-end Treasury bills have sold off sharply.
But money-market fund managers who are allowed to invest only in the safest short-term debt see the drop as a chance to buy. That is because they see the selling as temporary, believing the U.S. government will ultimately sort out its finances.
“We’re really not worried about the U.S. defaulting,” said Joseph D’Angelo, head of money funds at Prudential Fixed Income.
Among the big movers, the Treasury bill maturing on March 7—the first piece of debt to come due after the estimated cutoff date—saw its yield rise as high as 0.12% in the past week from 0.06% the week before. By comparison, there is only a 0.08% rate on three-month bills, the next closest maturity sold by the government.
Believing declines in Treasury bills will be temporary amid the debt-ceiling debate, Mr. D’Angelo says money managers are making sure they have cash to play these swings in coming months. On Friday, news that House Republicans are considering a three-month extension of the ceiling helped bring the March 7 bill yield back down to 0.06%.
But the battle is far from over and money managers may not continue to buy these bills. Money-market funds are highly conservative, and the allure of juicier yields will fade if a debt-ceiling deal comes down to the wire. Barclays warned last week that if the negotiations in Washington stall through mid-February, about 15% of the balances in government-only money funds could leave for bank deposits.
“It’s about investors’ confidence in funds, as well,” said Peter Yi, head of short-term fixed income at Northern Trust, who has kept little exposure to bills due in late February to early March. “If there are specific Treasury bills that have missed maturity dates, that could spark some confidence issues.”
Bloomberg - Obama Promise to Boost Middle Class Already in Peril:
“Obama was confronted in his first term with an inherited recession that drove down most Americans’ incomes. His second term starts with a fight to merely hold the line against the Republican House majority’s push to cut benefits in entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security that many Americans rely upon.
Looming battles over the budget, the legal debt limit and a round of automatic spending cuts scheduled for the end of February restrict Obama’s leeway for other priorities, such as boosting infrastructure spending to stimulate economic growth.
The pieces of his economic agenda most likely to raise middle-class living standards in the near term are “the parts that look like they’re not going anywhere,” said Larry Katz, a labor economics professor at Harvard University. These include plans for an infrastructure bank and tax breaks for new hires.
“Left by itself,” Katz said, the economic recovery is likely to continue generating “tepid, small improvements” in middle-income workers’ living standards “but not enough to really offset the poor performance since the late 1990s.”
Middle-class U.S. workers — defined by one measure as households with annual incomes within 50 percent of the national median, or between about $25,700 and $77,000 — have faced a four-decade-long erosion of living standards. It was interrupted by a rare period of rising earning power during the fast-growing economy of President Bill Clinton’s second term, Katz said.
Real median household income soared to $54,932 in 1999 from $50,661 in 1996 based on constant 2011 dollars, an all-time high since the U.S. Census began reporting the data in 1967.
By contrast, median household income in November was $51,310 — $3,850 lower than when Obama took office in January 2009, according to an analysis of census data by Sentier Research, an economic-consulting firm in Annapolis, Maryland.
Median wages for men between 25 and 64 dropped 19 percent - - to $34,000 a year — from 1971 to 2011, after accounting for inflation, according to an analysis by Michael Greenstone, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology economics professor and director of the Hamilton Project, a Washington research group affiliated with the Brookings Institution.
The impact of the decades-long slide in wages was initially cushioned in many families by the increasing number of women who went to work, and later by the home equity that families borrowed against during the run-up in housing prices before the real estate bubble burst.”
Defense is 20% of the federal budget and shrinking
Entitlements is 55% of the federal budget and growing
The US Government borrows 45 cents of every dollar it spends.
Do the math or end up like Greece.
“Entitlements is 55% of the federal budget and growing”
I call B.S. on this. The ‘growth’ in entitlements to which the poster refers are promises made years ago which were funded using pay-as-you-go ‘contributions.’ Now that more and more Baby Boomers are retiring and collecting their ‘entitlement’ benefits, the contributions needed to fund them are growing as a share of the federal budget. This is a long-predicted development, not a new development, as the poster suggests.
Show one shard of evidence that new ‘entitlements’ have been recently promised, or we will know this is just more Republican extremist propaganda coming our way…
Well, medicare drug coverage wasn’t that long ago. We could fix a lot of the cost by changing the rule to allow Medicare to negotiate for the price with drug companies rather than just paying “retail.”
Why would Medicare bother negotiating the best price, given that they are spending OPM? Wouldn’t it be better to just hand out vouchers and let individual households negotiate (shop for) their own best prices and pocket the change?
Medicare covers close to 100% of the population over 65. Large population. Big chunk of the market for lots of drugs. Lots of negotiating clout. Voucher = individual negotiating for him/herself. Almost no negotiating power unless they find some other way to bargain collectively.
And it isn’t all OPM. The Medicare drug coverage program is subsidized. Biggest corporate pork to a single corporate sector (outside of the financial sector) in recent memory.
The VA pays way less for drugs than Medicare patients.
“Lots of negotiating clout. Voucher = individual negotiating for him/herself. Almost no negotiating power unless they find some other way to bargain collectively.”
Point taken, unless the market is competitive on the supply side as well.
Big chunk of the market for lots of drugs. Lots of negotiating clout.
I saw this with Brazil and USA/European AIDS drugs. Brazil said you lower prices or we’ll make the drugs ourselves and give you a cut - millions of lives saved is more important than your profit margin. The drug companies caved.
Median wages for men between 25 and 64 dropped 19 percent - - to $34,000 a year — from 1971 to 2011,
Gee, duhhhh, ther mite be a conection there somwhere,
You fool, we don’t have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem.
Has Obama ever mentioned a lower class? Does one even exist according to his administration?
He doesn’t need to mention them because they’re already 100% solid in their support of him after he bought them off with “gifts” like SNAP cards, Obama phones, disability checks. If Romney had won the election all of those handout programs would have ended effective 12:01pm EST today by Executive order.
Did you miss the memo that the 47 percent voted for Romney?
Romney’s final share of the vote? You guessed it: 47 percent.
Posted by Aaron Blake on November 26, 2012 at 1:33 pm
Call it irony or call it coincidence: Mitt Romney’s share of the popular vote in the 2012 presidential race is very likely to be 47 percent.
Romney’s campaign, of course, was doomed in large part by comments made on a hidden camera in which he suggested that 47 percent of the country was so reliant on government services that those people would never vote for him.
The words ’47 percent’ came to define what was already evident: that Romney struggled to connect with lower- and middle-income voters and with groups such as Latinos. And in the end, it looks like 47 percent also just happens to be the share of the vote that Romney will get.
My favorite part of the 47 percent story was this part:
What Did Jimmy Carter’s Grandson Have To Do With The Romney Video?
by Eyder Peralta
September 18, 2012 3:57 PM
There is a partisan side to the video that is giving Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney headaches. The man who found the video online and then negotiated its full release was James Carter IV, President Jimmy Carter’s grandson.
If you haven’t heard by now, the video was released by Mother Jones and it shows Romney talking bluntly about 47 percent of the country, whom he says pay no taxes and think themselves “victims.”
Carter was listed as providing “research assistance” in the original article published on the magazine’s website.
In an interview with New York Magazine, Carter said he first noticed a clip of the video on YouTube in late May. Since then, Carter kept digging and eventually connected with the person who recorded the video. He played a big role in convincing them that they should release it in full to Mother Jones.
Carter spoke to NBC News today. He told them that he was “proud” of surfacing this video and admitted that he was driven by partisanship.
Whenever there is a democrat in the white house…
There are no homeless and lower class…
Government does everything it can for people with HIV…
There are no death counts for any military adventures…
Cindy Sheenen who?
…and the “conservatives” screech and throw feces.
Politicians of all stripes love to talk about the middle class on a nearly daily basis. Every once in a while the working class is mentioned. That’s quite disproportionate, because the working class is at least twice as numerous as the middle class if properly couonted. There was a lot of concern for the poor back in the 1960s in response to the popular movements of that decade. Since that time, poverty has largely fallen off of the agenda as the vast majority of the population has been distracted and discouraged from participating meaninfully in the nation’s politics.
“Median household income in November was $51,310 — $3,850 lower than when Obama took office in January 2009, according to an analysis of census data by Sentier Research, an economic-consulting firm in Annapolis, Maryland.”
It’s a recession. No surprise.
“Median wages for men between 25 and 64 dropped 19 percent - - to $34,000 a year — from 1971 to 2011, after accounting for inflation.”
That’s more of an issue. It was covered up first by more women in the workforce, so household income kept rising. Then by lost FUTURE income in retirement benefits, which didn’t affect future spending. Then by exploding debt. No hiding from it now.
High school dropouts started getting poorer in the 1970s. It happened to blue collar high school graduates in the “deindustrialization” recession of the early 1980s, and to college gradutes and office workers in the early 1990s recession as automation and outsourcing took hold. In the 2000s only the one percent got ahead. Now it’s the 0.1 percent.
Typo — Lost retirement benefits didn’t affect CURRENT spending, only future spending. The future is now, as those at the wrong end reach what used to retirement age without savings or pensions.
The impact of the decades-long slide in wages was initially cushioned in many families by the increasing number of women who went to work, and later by the home equity that families borrowed against during the run-up in housing prices before the real estate bubble burst
“…median household income in November was $51,310…”
A family of four relying on $51,310 in 2013 in a U.S. metro area is likely struggling to stay alive, hardly middle-class IMHO.
Good reason to not have any kids, as a household of one or two can comfortably live on $50K in most parts of the U.S.
Only if you have health insurance through work. Without that, $50K could be hard even for a single person with a pre-existing condition.
Only if you have health insurance through work.
+1. We would all have a lot more options if we were all eligible for Medicare.
“Obama Promise to Boost Middle Class Already in Peril:”
cool..so he’s finally going to let housing prices crash?
i knew i should have voted for him.
To his credit, he made no mention of future plans to prop up housing prices in this year’s inaugural speech. Perhaps he has entrusted that duty to the independent U.S. central bank.
i’m one of those wackos that watches what they do rather than just listening to what they say.
There is still the State of the Union Address to announce a continuation of “housing price stabilization” measures…
Bloomberg - Snowless Chicago Winter Feeds Budget While Fueling Murder Rate:
“Snow is serious business in Chicago, where the failure to handle it once drove a mayor from office. Now, a record 329 days without an inch of the white stuff has the current mayor counting mixed blessings — savings from idled salt trucks and a higher murder rate from warmer weather.
The last time the third-largest U.S. city had an inch of snow on the ground for 24 hours straight was Feb. 24, “making this the longest stretch of its kind on record in Chicago,” according to the National Weather Service.
The city doesn’t yet know just how much it will save in its $20.3 million snow budget from last year. In part that’s because it’s in uncharted territory, said Sarah Wetmore, vice president and research director at the Civic Federation, a Chicago-based nonprofit group that tracks government finances.
“There’s never been this little snow since the beginning of records in Chicago,” Wetmore said in a telephone interview. “We don’t know how much money we’re going to save.” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel closed a $298 million deficit last year with budget cuts, dismissals and other measures.
Another measure is certain. The city’s murder rate spiked 66 percent in the first quarter of 2012, when temperatures were 30 percent above normal and snowfall was 30 percent below average. Unseasonably mild weather sends more people outdoors, helping to trigger more violence, Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said in an interview.
“Nice weather will put more people on the street, which will create more opportunity for crime to occur,” McCarthy said, noting that murders were up 16 percent for the year. “The opportunity is limited when you have a foot of snow. There’s not a causal relationship with weather and crime. It’s merely an influencer.”
Well, when gun bans don’t work you can always blame the weather…
It really is harder to carry out a drive-by shooting, or do much of anything else in an automobile, when there are a couple of feet of snow on the ground and more coming down in blizzard conditions.
Are you suggesting the weather has no effect on the murder rate?
Yet “red” states in the south that rarely get any snow and have gun vending machines in schools have a murder rate magnitudes lower that “gun free” Chicago…
The top twenty states for deaths by firearms are all red states. Go figure:
Oh you and your silly facts…
Yeah great facts.
Chicago, Illinois - 15.9 murders per 100,000
Your top “red state”
Louisiana 11.2 murders per 100,000 (which is heavily slanted due to the democratic/liberal chocolate murder city of New Orleans)
But go ahead and keep cherry picking your data.
Long time democratic/liberal controlled cities (many with “tough” gun control) equals massive crime and the nation’s murder hot spots.
Now why is that?
And why do they want to impose their misery on the rest of us?
Chicago is a city. And Louisiana is a state. So it’s apples to oranges.
Chicago is in Illinois, which is number 30 on the list of states with the most fatalities by firearms, with 9.7 per 100,000.
Louisiana is number 2, with 19.5 per 100,000.
You seem to focus on murders ONLY by firearms.
Because all other murders don’t count?
And that democrat/liberal controlled cities that have nearly banned guns have high murder rates than the rest of the nation?
And why do you want to impose your misery on the rest of us?
i love these “red states” stats…as if those states are 100% republican…unless that is the case pointing the stats out as some sort of codemnation of the political polices of those that make it a “red sate” is stupid.
…as if those states are 100% republican…
Same with blue states and cities, no?
Is that the new right-wing slogan?
After you wanted, but now realize you can’t get “your country back?”
“Same with blue states and cities, no?”
In 59 Philadelphia voting divisions, Mitt Romney got zero votes
It’s one thing for a Democratic presidential candidate to dominate a Democratic city like Philadelphia, but check out this head-spinning figure: In 59 voting divisions in the city, Mitt Romney received not one vote. Zero. Zilch.
Actually I think I believe it. If it were fraud, they would choose a non-zero number.
“Charlie don’t surf!”
“We are either going to make snow angels or we are going to kill people”. - random gang leader
“I came here to build snowmen and kick some ass. And I don’t see any snow on the ground.” -carjacking thug
Global warming finally admitting that my estimate that almost 90% of the warming was natural and we might be headed to much colder temperatures.
GLOBAL COOLING!! Sound the alarm!! Somebody call Al-Jazeera and get Al Gore on the line- he’s got a new global environmental catastrophe to hawk. Unleash the Carbon-Debits! Release Manbearpig! We are back in business, boys!
just like the housing bubble…when this is finally exposed…everyone is going to pretend that “they just knew it!”
Either that, or they will be heard to say, “Nobody could have seen it coming!”
What Dan fails to grasp is that land and atmospheric temperatures are just a small fraction of what comprise the data; surface temperature averages are not an accurate measure of global warming.
He also fails to recognize that 1998 was the most intense El Nino year that the scientists had ever seen. He has picked the biggest statistical outlier in the data (and one that we know the explanation for) as his baseline.
Where I live is setting new record high temps.
NASA has raised 1998 from being .59C above the norm to being .61C above the norm. Compare this to the land and ocean average for December 2012 being .44C above the norm. So we are .17C cooler than 1998. The AGW crowd’s computer models called for it to be around .75C above 1998. So the computer models are off by .92C. because they vastly over estimate co2 impact on climate. So while the jet stream may impact weather in local areas, any warming where you are is being offset somewhere else. 2013 is the last year where natural factors are going to be heavily align in favor of GW (peak solar) so it should get very interesting after this year.
Bad news, AQDan. I was watching Fox news coverage of the inauguration parade (a little schadenfreude treat, on this holiday), and the announcers and commentators were all agreeing that ‘the demographics have turned’ on the current GOP, and climate change and gay marriage were the two things most often suggested as areas where the ‘leaders needed to get out of the way of the party members’- ie the current party stance needed to be updated to reflect GOP voters’ beliefs.
Eventually, even the anchor gets dragged along.
Climate change numbers move with the weather. The people have been promised mild winters. A couple of cold winters and the vast majority of people will not pay one penny to fight global warming.
Yeah just wait. After 3 or 4 years without a major terror attack ‘the people’ will demand we go back to 2001 levels of defense spending.
Also watched Fox during breaks from CSPAN. They seemed to be obsessed with the idea of someone trying to assassinate the President.
I never had that fear that’s why Biden was chosen as VP…..
Yeah, about that…
Journalists will still be looking for catchy news pegs, particularly in the IPCC report. They’ll find only nuanced differences from the last assessment in 2007, Schmidt says. Yet many will stretch those fine distinctions into exaggerated and overwrought headlines, which can lead to public confusion.
That’s what happened when the U.K.’s climate-monitoring organization, the Met Office, released an update to its global-temperature data set in October. Despite British scientists’ explanation that it showed multi-decadal warming, outlets such as the Daily Mail cherry-picked the data to support the headline: “Global Warming Stopped 16 Years Ago.” The Met Office called the coverage “misleading,” but it was widely reprinted by other media outlets.
Bloomberg and Rupert are part of the .02% of course they push AGW and open borders. The Met has been part of the AGW scam all along. However, the hard data does not support AGW and it will be impossible to ignore that data going forward.
I checked out that blog. It’s garbage.
Go find me a news article from any agricultural, aquaculture, forestry or ranching magazine or journal that claims AGW is a scam.
And what factual assertion is incorrect?
“There’s never been this little snow since the beginning of records in Chicago,
This is very bad for the continuing drought.
Very bad for the Great Lakes. And farmers. We are way below average on precipitation, both the liquid and frozen variety.
BTW, if you want snow in Chicago there is plenty on the way so I guess the crime problem will be “solved”:
Where do members of the housing bubble blog live?
Everyone is against home ownership as it’s money pit…
Are y’all renters ? Do you plan renting for the rest of your life?
Since most desirable neighborhoods are ‘overpriced’ and over ‘3x’ the median salary? Does it mean everyone lives out in the suburbs or in the ghetto? Or maybe in tinny towns outside of describable metro areas?
Or maybe everyone is wealthy and pay cash?
Or maybe everyone bought in the 80s when it was cheap?
I wanna know where everyone lives because housing IS expensive, but you know what? We all HAVE to live somewhere.
I hear a lot of people complain and complain, but offer little solutions.
Is renting the best to do? Are you planning on renting for the rest of your life?
My mom’s owned her home for over 40 years and it’s been paid off for over 10. She has no ‘mortage’ payments and that seems to work very well for her.
Does her home need repairs? Sure, but most are minor. Houses don’t need roofs and new foundations every year.
“Are y’all renters ? Do you plan renting for the rest of your life?
I hear a lot of people complain and complain, but offer little solutions.
Is renting the best to do? Are you planning on renting for the rest of your life?
Where’s Pimp Watch when you need him?
Brett’s realtor charade is mildly amusing.
It’s a bit too incoherent to be very convincing…at least to a rational person. (Not sure about greater fools who might be tempted to buy real estate during this dead cat bounce…)
Buy a condo with a sunken living room to enjoy his remaining days comfortably underwater.
Officially Brett has joined the club of most annoying posters.
Since you are committed to buy, you will not pay any attention to facts or rationality. Just go ahead and buy and spare with us stupid posts.
Since you are committed to buy, you will not pay any attention to facts or rationality.
Not pay attention to facts? Brett conveys the facts of the Austin market all the time.
Maybe it’s you who are not paying attention.
Rio The Red….. How many times must it be explained to you that quoting realtors merely diminishes what little credibility you might have?
diminishes what little credibility you might have
That’s too bad Pimp because my credibility is 5X yours.
You can’t think too well anymore and you can’t parse data. You don’t even see what is going around you.
You are just a Parrot…….. of yourself.
Far too many times you’ve been caught lying and pimping housing here. There’s no need for that. You have the rest of the internet to lie to people about housing.
Why lie here?
I am not a realtor and I decided not to guy.
Being so bitter regarding real estate, do you live under a bridge? Or do you live with your parents?
I decided not to *buy*. Damn you auto correct
Brett you’re a scammer.
Brett, I’m glad to see you decided not to buy. Rent/buy calculations are meaningless if your job situation is not secure.
Your rent is, what, $1899? I did a quick check of Apartmentfinder and found 2-bed apts for $800-$1000:
NE in University Hills,
SE near the airport,
SW near Oak Creek Park, and
NW near Far West Boulevard.
Even tony Montevista near the Austin Country Club is $1300/month.
All of this is within 5 miles of downtown. For you, chasing cheaper rent is a real option.
“Is renting the best to do? ”
Renting is not the best, but it is a less worse option for now. The FED creates a environment that have no good option - only a bad one and a worse one.
Renting now is total different from planning on renting for the rest of life. Hopefully you can understand. The question is when to buy, not if.
“Hopefully you can understand. The question is when to buy, not if.”
I think I understand. ‘Never’ is a possible answer to the question of ‘when to buy.’ Right?
“‘Never’ is a possible answer to the question of ‘when to buy.’ Right?”
Technical, “never” is posiible, but not very likely.
I am with you on this one. My living costs have increased tremendously since I go out of college. My first rebt was a nice condo in tarrytown for $975 / month. I moved a little closer to downtown and it went up to $1309 by choice. Fast forward 4 years and it’s up to $1900 if I choose to stay at the same place.
I will most likely end up moving because i refuse to pay so much to the expense of enjoying many things I like such as accessibility to the lake, my gym, restaurants and bars. I really enjoy my pool, grill and neighbors.
But it’s not like I have many other options.
Rio The Red….. I build’em. I have plenty of houses.
I have plenty of houses.
Two, right? Or did you buy that third you were hunting for last year?
Back for another day schooling? Are you prepared to be honest today?
“My mom’s owned her home for over 40 years and it’s been paid off for over 10. She has no ‘mortage’ payments and that seems to work very well for her.
Does her home need repairs? Sure, but most are minor. Houses don’t need roofs and new foundations every year.”
Could the poster (or anyone) kindly explain why this is whatsoever relevant to the buy-or-rent decision today, after home prices went through an epic bubble and collapse, and at a point when low-end inventory has been pretty much all ’snapped up’ in desirable areas by investors and the central bank is pulling out all the stops to artificially reflate housing prices?
Because I’m missing it.
I was trying to address those who say one should never buy housing yet they live somewhere.
Taxes in Texas are 2.38%. A house appraised at 200k has taxes of roughly $400 a buck. High? Sure, but we don’t have state taxes to file.
You can’t rent a house? Seriously?
Brett my real estate professional. You need new material.
“I was trying to address those who say one should never buy housing yet they live somewhere.”
I see no problem with buying at 65% off current prices in our area…
Insurance will run another 1% in Texas.
I’m not of much help, as I’m too young and poor to buy a house. However, even if I had the money, I wouldn’t. I plan on living in the less safer, non white areas. I grew up in a small town that was getting very violent, so I’m used to it (although not every run down area is extremely violent). I think if you are older, and have more money (especially a down payment), it might be good to buy in some areas. However, if you are under 30, I think it’s a horrible, horrible idea (in the metros) unless you have a professional degree and make at least 150k family income.
I saw you wanted to buy a condo, I don’t think you should, just because I can imagine condo owners getting fked over. I’m pretty sure condos used to be the option for people who didn’t have kids yet, or who were single, because it was cheaper than a house. I’d much rather rent a room in someone’s house before I bought at today’s prices, especially a condo. But maybe that’s because I’m stubborn and pessimistic. I’m just not seeing any job security for many people right now, so it seems like a bad decision unless you have all cash.
My solution is to rent a room, trailor, or studio and to keep my monthly expenses down as much as possible. But, I’m a minimalist, so I’m sure not everyone wants to be like that.
Thanks for your honest and respectful answer. That’s definitely not y cup of tea, but I can see its advantages.
We advise you to buy a condo in Austin. In particular, we suggest you buy the Craterian model. That way you won’t have to expend any effort to dive ever deeper underwater as you’ll already be so far down.
‘I hear a lot of people complain and complain, but offer little solutions.’
This the ‘fork in the road’ version of to buy or not to buy. I have to decide; what do I do? It’s now or never, there’ no going back!
Here’s a different way to pose the question; not to this blogs readers as a group, but as individuals. For you reader, how will it change your life if I buy a condo in downtown Austin?
Myself, I can’t see how it will affect my life. I don’t have to make the payments. Even if you get a government backed loan, one more on top of millions won’t change much. I don’t even feel much concern for you personally, because if it turns out to be a mistake, you’re young and you’ll get over it. We can still go out for margaritas the next time I’m in Austin.
Now see, there’s no pressure. It’s just a decision. If you don’t like the condo, just walk away. That’s what everybody else does.
It was a pleasure meeting you Ben!
Remember all those empty high rises we saw in downtown Austin? They have a very high occupancy nowadays…. And they keep building down by Kyle and Buda!
I hope you’re well
I can’t even imagine living in Buda and commuting to Austin.
Once you buy a home in a falling knife real estate market, you are priced in forever.
Renters always have to option to buy later, after prices crater by 65%.
Why wouldn’t anyone in their right mind rent, Brett?
Crap. It’s up to 65% now?
Ryan! You’re one of my favorite real estate professionals.
How’s your scamming going lately?
It’s always been 65%. It’s the number of abandoned homes that magically keeps going up. Started at 18 million and now it’s up to 35 million.
I live in Brooklyn, and bought in 1994 after the first housing bubble — which peaked in 1987 — deflated. I didn’t expect to seen another, but I have.
I had to be a “bitter renter” for seven extra years waiting for prices to return to normal, compared with when we might have bought a house otherise.
We were packed into small apartments, but all those years of extra savings meant a very large downpayment, and a 15 year mortgage that we paid off in 10 (thanks to the stock market bubble, that was the best investment we could make).
The question for us is, where will our kids be able to live since the NY area bubble has yet to fully deflate, and the city is now more expensive than the suburbs?
‘I had to be a “bitter renter” for seven extra years waiting for prices to return to normal, compared with when we might have bought a house otherise.’
Hah! I was a “bitter renter” at exactly the same time — renting while saving up a downpayment to purchase our first home.
“The question for us is, where will our kids be able to live since the NY area bubble has yet to fully deflate, and the city is now more expensive than the suburbs?”
Given your past experience with waiting out a bubble, I would think you would be uniquely qualified to advise your kids. (I’ve been training mine for nearly a decade already…)
I owe a lot to this blog and others. I delayed buying a house until a little over a year ago because a small group saw what was happening over a decade ago. I could have overextended myself and joined the party like so many did. instead I waited, and saved. I now own a house in a good neighborhood in SoCal that costs less than three times my income. My payments are affordable and I have a cushion in case I suffer an unexpected job loss. For me, the timing was right. My son was about to go into first grade, for the first time ever, we could afford a house that we genuinely liked and could live in for the rest of our days. At that point, it became less about whether the price goes up or down and more about stability and security. (Rent prices out here have shot up in the last year or two as well.). Our mortgage payment is less than we were paying in rent two years ago. So…no. You take the knowledge that you gain from here and elsewhere. Then apply your own filters and logic, and do the best that you can.
Your losses are incalculable.
” we could afford a house that we genuinely liked and could live in for the rest of our days”
I think that is the most important line of your post. The whole “get in the real estate market, and you can move up later” is pretty much dead but most especially in an area still in an active bubble. If you don’t think you will want to stay there forever (and as far as we know you are way too young for that), or you can’t deal with taking a pretty large loss that might have to be paid all at once if you need to move, then you don’t want to go there.
If you think that you would be happy to live in a downtown Austin condo forever (even if you get married, have kids, lose your job, etc.) or you have enough cash to pay off any loan and wouldn’t mind doing that if you have to move for any reason, then it isn’t such a big deal.
We bought our house in 1990 shortly after I received an offer of a position with a private practice medical group in a nice area north of Chicago. The odds of staying in that area long-term were high. Both my husband and I had good jobs with good benefits, and buying made sense. We paid about twice our annual income at that time for the house. We only had enough in savings to put 10% down. We never moved up to a larger more impressive home, and paid off the 15-year mortgage on our little house in 14 years, after refinancing twice: the first time we put in additional cash to get rid of the PMI and we lowered our interest rate by 2 percentage points. The second time we got rid of the hated property tax escrow (I never trusted the mortgage company to pay the taxes on time) and again lowered the interest rate.
I do not advise you to buy, Brett, because you are young, single, your life situation will probably change at some point, and condos are a bad investment. Plus, where you want to live is hideously overpriced.
I do not advise you to buy, Brett, because you are young, single, your life situation will probably change at some point, and condos are a bad investment. Plus, where you want to live is hideously overpriced.
Is it overpriced? It sure is, but so are most desirable markets…
Will my situation change? Doubt it. Kids? No thanks.
And 2 people fit in a one bedroom if it comes time to get serious
Is it overpriced? It sure is, but so are most desirable markets…
Which is what this blog is all about.
I live in a nice house on 5 acres. Total cost: 850/month. Buying it would double my costs, assuming it didn’t depreciate.
Why buy when you can rent it for half the monthly cost? Buy later after prices crater for 65% less.
Glad to share. I rent. But I am living in Boston temporarily for work. Been here three years. Could be another three. Mabye even five. Long term plan: I’ll buy for cash when I retire (10 years tops though am very tempted to quit now - the beauty of no debt and savings allows such fantasy) Will do a modified oil city plan. Will buy in DC or NY or San Fran but a studio. Minimal monthly cost. Also will probably do some kind of work part time after retirement but not the crazy schedule work load I have now. I am not opposed to owning RE. Just don’t want it to own me.
P.S. I am 51 years old.
P.S.S. Brett I posted a reply the day before yesterday to your previous day’s post.
So, it’s government intervention (Fed MBS buying, extremely low interest rates, a barrage of government lenders, the FHA with their 3.5% down loans) propping up the prices of houses. Can they keep it up forever? Probably not.
It’s like having a very wealthy neighbor who likes antiques. I go to an auction and she goes too. She always outbids me. So I keep my money until her appetite lessens or she runs out of cash. In the meantime, my net worth keeps increasing. But eventually, I want to buy antiques as I find it pleasing to own them.
Renting is a substitute for owning. I am on board with buying. If houses were cheaper, I would do so. I look at historic prices and I see massive jumps in the mid 2000s which have not reset. And these are price levels, which came about due to bad lending, which the government is trying to maintain through yet more debt.
Shelter is always a cost. The question is, how much of a cost will it be? Relatively more? Or relatively less.
House prices increased dramatically from the late 70s to the late 2000s due to the ability of the lender to completely shed repayment risk. The system was not sustainable and it imploded and the government put the rest of us on the hook to pay off the bad debt of the deadbeats and foreclosees, to benefit the financial sector. Those who expect such runups in the future are almost certainly mistaken, as there doesn’t seem to be a mechanism to support such a new runup. House prices are directly tied to the amount of debt one can take on.
I’ve seen people who bought houses and lost the house and lost money. I’ve seen renters who kept their powder dry and had their net worth increase. I’m on board with buying. In the long run, with a reasonably priced house, it can be less expensive than renting. But I’m not willing to buy at any cost as that will degrade my standard of living. And ultimately, it’s all about my standard of living.
‘Are you planning on renting for the rest of your life?’
My mom still lives in the TX house my parents bought in the 60’s. Her annual property taxes alone are more than the mortgage payments were. She says she is renting the house from the government.
You either rent your house from a landlord, or the bank and government (depending on if you have a mortgage).
One benefit of Prop 13 in California is that the rent to the government is highly predictable.
Real estate taxes are predictable even without a prop 13.
Having property taxes is predictable, but how much they are going to be is not as predictable when you look far into the future.
how much they are going to be is not as predictable
A very safe prediction is that property taxes will go up. Just when and by how much, whether the owner can really afford them, are unknown.
Yes, but with Prop 13 the increases are limited…it would take a significant shift to change that for primary residences.
My parents still live in the fully-paid-off house in which they raised their family fifty years ago. According to Zillow, its value dropped from $118K in March 2007 down to $72K as of November 2012. The Zestimate is off by $46K so far, and is still sliding.
If only they had perfect foresight, they could have sold at the top and pocketed nearly $120K. The $46K they lost by holding on to their falling-knife family-sized property would have sufficed to pay four and a half years of rent in comparable housing. That’s lots of years of rent for a couple in their mid-80s!
My mom doesn’t believe the Zestimate, and wouldn’t listen to my attempt to explain why I agree with her. Her basic point was that homes in their ‘hood don’t sell for over $50K. A quick review of recent comps ($50K, $40.5K, $20K) shown on the same page where Zillow posts their $72K Zestimate pretty much confirms my mom’s opinion.
How come Zillow inflates its Zestimates by implausible $KKKs?
I’ve seen “zestimates” be off in both directions. They seem to do the best when there are LOTS of comps, and general uniformity in product types…so, the values are pretty good in newer subdivisions.
Zestimates are pretty bad in older neighborhoods.
“I’ve seen “zestimates” be off in both directions.”
Why don’t you post a few examples where Zestimates are too low? Because I have honestly never seen a single instance, and I have looked at plenty of Zestimates since they started making them.
Or should we just take your word for it?
Just look at “recently sold” on the map, and you’ll see that ACTUAL sales are often above the “zestimate”. Picking in my near backyard to start:
262 Vine Street, San Carlos CA: Sold 11/14/12 for $855k, Zestimate $737k (Zestimate low)
111 Wellesley Cres APT 3S, Redwood City, CA: Sold 12/14/12 for $490k, Zestimate $562,950 (Zestimate high)
Going farther away:
7680 Harvest Moon Road, Reno, NV: Sold 6/4/12 for $315k, Zestimate $313k (newer community…easier to price) (zestimate low)
5818 Shadow Park Drive, Reno, NV: Sold 10/17/12 $164k, Zestimate $137k (zestimate low)
And nearer you:
2995 Mission Village Drive, San Diego, CA: Sold 12/27/12 for $320k, zestimate of $372k (zestimate high)
4883 Felton Street, San Diego, CA: Sold 12/31/12 for $600k, zestimate of $521k (zestimate low)
I’m sure there are markets where they are more consistently above, but I’ve seen both above and below closer to home.
My parents live in the house they bought in 1972, for $92,000. It’s Zestimate is $250,000.
My dad estimates he’s done about $100,000 in maintenance over those 40 years- most in the last 5 years, though, with materials that should long outlast what they replaced (aluminum/vinyl io wood, concrete io asphalt). I think I could have gotten the last big project (around $75,000) done for around $50,000, by subcontracting it myself. Still, not bad numbers.
Still, not bad numbers.
Ancient history & highly unlikely to be of use to a prospective house buyer today.
Conditions have changed radically.
Past performance is no guarantee of future results
“My parents live in the house they bought in 1972, for $92,000.”
That must be a huge place because $92k was a heck of a lot of money in 1972. Minimum wage was $1.35/hr IIRC.
That must be a huge place
You’re right. I just called pops, my numbers were all off (must have been too many eggnogs in me at xmas). They bought for $56,000 in 1972, and he thinks he’s probably put in $75,000 in maintenance over the years- the last big project being $60,000. But he admits you can never remember the nickel-dime stuff over the years.
So actually even better numbers.
He paid 20% down on the house (which cost $50,000 to build, the lot cost ~$6,000), with money he’d made from selling his starter home, bought with a 105% GI loan.
Zillow has (and always has had,) my house estimated at about what it would actually fetch were I to sell the land alone. At one point last year it was “Zestimated” at 1/12th of what I’d been offered for it during the bubble. They also have the dates, specs, and comps wrong.
So yes, sometimes they do screw it up royally.
They also have the dates, specs, and comps wrong.
Sounds like the public-records may be incorrect for your house.
I also have gotten the impression that your house is on the “more unique” end of the spectrum, Allena. They definitely do a better job with more-similar housing stock, such as tract housing.
I rented up until 2011. The house we purchased gives us a lot more than our prior rental (extra space for things like a home office, ability to host family gatherings, etc.). We tried to find a rental that gave us some of these same things, but most such rentals were only available for a shorter lease term than we wanted in order to justify moving (1 year, 18 months)–most were from people temporarily moving out of the area for work.
Given that my primary business is RE investment, I never considered my home purchase decision an investment decision (I have plenty of RE exposure elsewhere).
My main comment for you to consider is this:
Housing is consumed. Do not think of it as an investment.
While it can be a good thing economically to purchase if you intend to live there for a LONG time (like your mom), it can be quite costly if there is a strong possibility that you will either outgrow the space or find yourself in a situation where you need to sell in the near term (less than 10 years).
If the right kind of shelter for our family was the same kind of house we were renting, it is unlikely we would have purchased (we had a very stable landlord/tenant relationship). However, we had expanded our living space into the garage (kids play area), and there was a rodent problem that, despite efforts, wouldn’t go away.
If the kind of place you are thinking about purchasing is roughly the same as the kind of place you are currently renting, the decision is a more pure rent vs. own analysis. I would think long and hard about BOTH whether you want to live in that kind of place for upwards of 10 years, and whether the extra cost of ownership (time, maintenance, etc.) is worth whatever you get out of it (some people place great value upon being able to change their living space without talking to a landlord…I don’t).
From what I’ve heard from your comments, you are thinking of buying based on economics, but are still pretty young, and enjoying the downtown lifestyle. IMHO, the math, while important, should take a backseat to the questions of what kind of shelter you want to occupy currently, and how long you intend to occupy it–if you just want a real estate investment, there are other ways to get that exposure.
If you are concerned about rents rising, consider whether there is a more liquid investment that you can make with your down payment that will act in a similar way to your rents, and thus help defray that additional rent (an apartment REIT, while I don’t like the low yields today, will probably have their dividends go up with rent levels in the US generally). That liquid investment, just like housing, could fall in value during your period of ownership–however, it won’t cost you 6% to get out, and you can sell (all or some) with the click of a mouse.
“Where do members of the housing bubble blog live?”
Brett- I’m in eastern Washington state out in the Columbia Basin. Median houses are roughly 3x median income and slipping albeit slowly. The HELOC wave hit this area hard leaving many used home owners upside-down as the home builders can build brand new spec houses for less. What’s the catch? For starters it’s 24-degrees F outside, and we’ll be frozen until March, and then it’ll be overcast with showers until May, and then it’ll be perfect 70’s for maybe six weeks, and then it’ll be too f***ing HOT until late September.
If you have a functional/technical education you will do fine here, and your spouse can probably stay at home with the kids. Unfortunately about 30% of the total population lives on welfare as a lifestyle, and probably 20% of the manual labor workforce goes on unemployment every winter.
FWIW my house is paid for, and good thing too because our teen aged kids are costing me a fortune, and inflation in everything except income has got me hemmed in tight. I’m debt free, and staying that way too!
> Where do members of the housing bubble blog live?
OK, I’ll play.
I - for lack of a better term - own. Roughly 3K sqft, on half an acre, in what I consider to be a nice suburban neighborhood; house built in 2005. 5 car garage sold me on the place-
My 3.5% (now 14yr) mortgage is well under 2X my gross income. Comps say my property value is approximately 2X the mortgage value; ~%50 equity. I’ve been there 6 years now, re-financed twice. I’ve probably lost $60K on the place- It’s worth a little less than I paid for it, but that gives me no credit for the significant upgrades I’ve made (mostly landscaping the big yard and finishing the basement).
It would cost roughly $2K a month to rent something comparable (but smaller) in this area. 6 years of that is $144K.
With two teenage kids (one about to move out) I’ve been happy to give them a stable neighborhood, set of friends, and school situation.
If I could go back to 2007 and do things over, I would buy the place again. No regrets.
I don’t foresee ever needing a bigger place- if/when I move, it will probably be to someplace smaller.
“5 car garage sold me on the place-”
Mid 40s. Prior military. Rented for 18 years, becoming homeless twice for short periods, before I jumped on an auctioned property 3 years ago. Paid cash, now nobody can throw me out, at least until I can’t even summon up the property taxes (it’s bound to happen in 2013 at this rate). Rusty city near the Great Lakes. If I had been renting still, I’d be homeless again, and probably dead this time.
I will never forgive the middle class and the bankers for their vicious conspiracy during my entire life so far, trying to keep housing so f#$% expensive that it made me either homeless or constantly despondent. I should have known something was terribly wrong with society when some douchebags I worked with in the military were busy trying to buy up property so that renters could then “buy it for them”. In the late 1980s that’s all that people were talking about. Even at age 19-21, I should have known. Expensive housing and big inflation are all my generation has known, all while the Boomer job market was collapsing, producing this constant economic uncertainty. Lots of bills, or no real life at all, combined with sporadic work. It’s a recipe for catastrophe.
Even owning my own home, I’m still in trouble; I’m counting my 15th year of being in economic emergency. All I worry about in life, is money. Really if I wasn’t so strong willed, I’d have taken my own life by now. I know people who have. I’ve buried people younger than me. And I’m still taking that risk that several others have, where they wake up one day and say hello to the cold caress of Mister Cancer; late detection of course, which automatically means its fatal. Without regular access to a family doctor, I can see that people like me are in a high risk category. Overall, I’m sure our lifespans are short. I’m not even sure if I’ll live to collect SS at the minimum age.
I see my life choices being now holding on, capitalizing on extremely low monthly living costs, or just abandoning my investments, even my common property, to become a sad little renter in a major city far away, where there are actually some jobs. Honestly it’s really inertia that keeps me in the first option. I may as well just stay here since it’s at least a form of losing that I understand.
jeezuz H….. Peace and God bless my brother.
“Even at age 19-21, I should have known. Expensive housing and big inflation are all my generation has known, all while the Boomer job market was collapsing, producing this constant economic uncertainty. Lots of bills, or no real life at all, combined with sporadic work. It’s a recipe for catastrophe.”
Same deal here, always scrambling from month to month. Returning to college changed that, but I can feel stagflation’s grip closing in again. I’ve been labeled a skipping record, repeating the same warnings, but now some are now acknowledging their understanding unfortunately too late since they’ve buried themselves in debt. Main thing I’ve noticed too is that everyone I know hides their economic reality from their wife; everyone.
Your words ring true, Better. And yes, your house is a blessing if you can use it to shelter your soul and help you rebuild your strength.
Please do? Because you’re a brave and honest man in a time when introspection is scarce.
New York Times - A Trendy Turn in Obama’s Town:
“Meanwhile, in the trendy corridors of this city, the Good Stuff Eatery on Capitol Hill will be serving its signature Prez Obama Burger (with applewood bacon and Roquefort cheese) and its Michelle Melt turkey burger (free range, of course, on a whole wheat bun), the staff at the Boundary Road restaurant on H Street Northeast will be pouring craft beers from Baltimore and Brooklyn, and at the U Street Music Hall, the rock music will be playing long after the swearing-in is over.
None of these places existed before 2008.
That was the year when Barack Obama won his first presidential election and started putting together an administration that would soon replace that of President George W. Bush. And for many of Mr. Obama’s young supporters, this second inauguration — and its revelries — are symbols of the transformation of the nation’s capital into a younger and livelier city.
Long viewed as a stodgy, early-to-bed town, Washington over the past four years has become a mecca for young professionals who have been drawn to its blooming economy and its revitalized urban core. Once-neglected stretches of the city now bustle with bars, restaurants and coffee shops.
The February edition of Food & Wine magazine heralds the city’s “new food scene” for its “innovative restaurants,” with offerings that range from baked orzo for brunch and dan dan noodles at midnight. In September, Forbes magazine included H Street Northeast, with its bars, music halls and restaurants, in its list of the nation’s 20 “best hipster neighborhoods.” (H Street ranked sixth, behind the Pearl District in Portland, Ore.)
The city’s population boom and heightened hipness quotient cannot be directly attributed to Mr. Obama’s appeal among younger voters. (Sorry, Mr. President.) Washington has had a relatively strong economy, compared with other cities. And waves of gentrification and investment have changed the face of the city.
But a census analysis conducted by Susan Weber-Stoger, a demographer at Queens College, suggests that the lure of federal jobs during the Obama years has played a part.
Between 2009 and 2011, the number of college-educated people aged 22 to 34 who live here, but were not enrolled in school, surged by nearly a third to 93,354. The number of people in that age group who work for the federal government jumped even higher, by 61 percent.
Hope and Change
$6 Trillion in deficit spending had to go somewhere.
Looks like it went to paying nice government salaries of youngster wonks who then spend that money on cool places to hand out.
‘Four years ago, promising a new openness, the president banned corporate giving to the inauguration, limited gifts from individuals to $50,000 and released a full accounting of donations. This year, the sky’s the limit on gifts, corporations are good people and the official roster of donors won’t include addresses or amounts for up to 90 days.’
‘…even after a $2 billion presidential campaign, the quest for dollars in Washington continues. This weekend, the high rollers are paying for inauguration parties that are almost always busts, a ceremony that’s better seen on TV and access that’s not exactly priceless but pretty darn expensive.’
‘For the thousands of high-end donors who pay for the whole thing, the inauguration is about exclusive access to the president and vice president, as well as what insiders call “placement.” (Jobs, they mean.)’
“$6 Trillion in deficit spending had to go somewhere.”
Probably half of that was spent bolstering Israel’s security, and it’s not over yet.
Not even close.
Most of it went to bolstering the wall street firms and unions that gave generously to the obama campaign.
Israel–United States relations are an important factor in the United States government’s overall policy in the Middle East, and Congress has placed considerable importance on the maintenance of a close and supportive relationship. The main expression of Congressional support for Israel has been foreign aid. Since 1985, it has provided nearly $3 billion in grants annually to Israel
Aren’t you forgetting the two off-balance-sheet wars?
“Aren’t you forgetting the two off-balance-sheet wars?”
Wingnuts never forget. They it a point to to not mention it.
Dang it. Now I’m hungry.
New York Times - What Is Middle Class in Manhattan?
“Manhattan, however, is not like most places. Its 1.6 million residents hide in a forest of tall buildings, and even the city’s elite take the subway. Sure, there are obvious brand-name buildings and tony ZIP codes where the price of entry clearly demands a certain amount of wealth, but middle-class neighborhoods do not really exist in Manhattan — probably the only place in the United States where a $5.5 million condo with a teak closet and mother-of-pearl wall tile shares a block with a public housing project.
In a city like New York, where everything is superlative, who exactly is middle class? What kind of salary are we talking about? Where does a middle-class person live? And could the relentless rise in real estate prices push the middle class to extinction?
“A lot of people are hanging on by the skin of their teeth,” said Cheryl King, an acting coach who lives and works in a combined apartment and performance space that she rents out for screenings, video shoots and workshops to help offset her own high rent.
“My niece just bought a home in Atlanta for $85,000,” she said. “I almost spend that on rent and utilities in a year. To them, making $250,000 a year is wealthy. To us, it’s maybe the upper edge of middle class.”
“It’s horrifying,” she added.
Her horror, of course, is Manhattan’s high cost of living, which has for decades shocked transplants from Kansas and elsewhere, and threatened natives with the specter of an economic apocalypse that will empty the city of all but a few hardy plutocrats.
The average Manhattan apartment, at $3,973 a month, costs almost $2,800 more than the average rental nationwide. The average sale price of a home in Manhattan last year was $1.46 million, according to a recent Douglas Elliman report, while the average sale price for a new home in the United States was just under $230,000. The middle class makes up a smaller proportion of the population in New York than elsewhere in the nation. New Yorkers also live in a notably unequal place. Household incomes in Manhattan are about as evenly distributed as they are in Bolivia or Sierra Leone — the wealthiest fifth of Manhattanites make 40 times more than the lowest fifth, according to 2010 census data.”
It is ironic how the most liberal and socialist of cities in America have the largest gap in wealth…
But the “elites” they will never fail to lecture the rest of us on what is fair.
Of course, NYC is one of the largest leech city in the world - all the trillion dollar bailouts go there to keep the bankers alive with their million dollar bonuses.
NYC also has some of the highest income taxes (you will pay about 10% combined with NYC and NYC income taxes.).
And then come the INSANE property taxes. Expect a nothing special small house on a postage stamp lot to have at least $20,000/year in property taxes anywhere within 20 miles of NYC. And it does not drop off that much the father out you get.
Thanks once again for showing us just how luntic fringe you are.
As for people who want to live in NYC, well, you can’t fix that kind of stupid.
And I thought $1,200 was a lot of money per month… :/
It would make the PITI on a $200,000 house, with a little left over for maintenance, of course.
“Where does a middle-class person live?”
In the outer boroughs, or the outer suburbs. Not in Manhattan, or suburban Westchester, Nassau, or Fairfield Counties, aside from special circumstances of having bought or moved to a rent-regulated location long ago or coming up with some other kind of special deal.
The 2 linked articles are quite amusing. Manhatten has been over priced since 1900.
This news should help keep a lid on Spanish sovereign bond yields.
Spain Recession Scars Exposed as Jobless Seen at 6 Mln
By Angeline Benoit - Jan 21, 2013 4:47 AM MT
Spain’s scars from the slump that overshadowed Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s first year in office will emerge this week as data show the toll on economic output that may have kept as many as 6 million people out of work.
Jan. 21 (Bloomberg) — Fitch Ratings Director Douglas Renwick discusses euro-zone credit conditions and U.K. monetary policy. He speaks with Guy Johnson on Bloomberg Television’s “The Pulse.” (Source: Bloomberg)
Spanish exports fell 0.6 percent in November from the same month the previous year, when they had risen 7.4 percent, the Economy Ministry said today. House-price data tomorrow will show if the property market endured a fourth year of declines. The Bank of Spain may also release its estimate for fourth-quarter gross domestic product, and the data will culminate in jobs figures on Jan. 24, forecast by economists to show a record 26 percent of Spaniards unemployed.
Officials predict the euro-area’s fourth-biggest economy faces a further slump this year at a time when the government will struggle to meet its budget goals. Such a backdrop hasn’t deterred investors, with the prospect of a European Central Bank backstop in the event of a bailout enabling the Treasury to fast-track higher 2013 funding needs, selling 16 billion euros ($21 billion) at its first three auctions at lower costs.
“Unemployment will continue to rise this year,” said Sara Balina, an analyst with Madrid-based consultancy firm Analistas Financieros Internacionales. “Demand will deteriorate and outweigh the positive contributors to growth that are tourism and exports.”
Do they have strict gun control? If not it could be used as a diversion from the economy as it is used here.
California and Maryland in the Top 10 States With Highest Negative Equity(and rising)
Also Idaho and Arizona. New Hampshire seems to be 12th.
NH is a disaster. Massive excess housing inventory with housing demand slipping to early 1990’s levels. MA, NY to follow.
CA in Q2 2011 was 30% (now slightly lower)
In Q3 2011, CA fell out of the top 5 for the first time since 2009
Where do you see that CA is rising in number of homes with negative equity?
Read the article Rental Pimp.
Nowhere does it say that the proportion of negative equity is rising.
The press releases (same source as your article), actually support the opposite…that the proportion of underwater borrowers is shrinking in California.
Don’t be silly. Falling prices puts more debtors underwater.
From CoreLogic’s more detailed reports…California’s Negative Equity Percentage:
Q1 2012: 30.5%
Q2 2012: 29%
Q3 2012: 28.3%
Just like falling prices, negative equity isn’t a straight line.
Neither is insanity……..usually.
Pimp is jealous of you Rental. It’s obvious. You make money on rentals and you own your own house and that just irks him.
Whenever Rio The Red is flummoxed, he accuses someone of being “jealous”. He condemns himself.
I don’t think he’s jealous. I just think he has a position that can’t be defended by the data, and so he thinks that raising the volume will make up for poor argument.
The data speaks for itself. Get over it.
“The data speaks for itself.”
Finally something we can agree upon.
Sure. Demand is at 16 year lows, prices are falling and you’re further underwater today than you were yesterday.
‘Shadow REO’: As Many as 90% of Foreclosed Properties Held Off the Market
I agree with all of this but it still doesn’t address the problems we renters face: Lenders understand their plight and how to circumvent it. There is no mechanism forcing them to sell this glut of inventory, what event or events could conceivably change this?
This market is in a stalemate.
Renting for half the monthly cost of buying isn’t a problem. It’s the solution.
Renting for half the monthly cost of buying isn’t a problem. It’s the solution fantasy in much of America.
Of course you don’t like the fact that rental rates are half the cost of buying. But don’t let your personal opinions get in the way of the truth.
Carry on debt-pimp.
“Dead Cat Bounce Over: Florida House Prices Plunge Anew”
Someone posted this in the comments:
‘The DIY show, The Vanilla Ice Project, focuses on home improvement and the development of a themed strategy designed to transform the appearance of the mansion. Now you can learn the same strategies that he uses on the show to flip homes for MASSIVE profits!’
uh huh….. Throwing more money at rapidly depreciating assets like a houses is a “strategy”? lmao.
His show was pretty intertaining.
He sure knows his palm trees.
All the money that was pumped into housing is leading to a decline in other sectors of the U.S. economy, as inadvertently documented in this article:
Jan. 20, 2013, 8:00 a.m. EST
Housing rebound gives economy more pop
Sales of new, used properties expected to show further gains
By Jeffry Bartash, MarketWatch
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Consumers are feeling pinched by higher taxes and business investment has been choppy, so it’s a good thing the housing sector continues to build up speed.
Construction on new properties rose in December at the fastest clip in four years and the sale of new homes in the last month of 2012 is likely to remain at a two-and-a-half-year high. What’s more, existing homes are selling at their strongest pace in three years.
Sales of existing home for December will be reported Tuesday by the National Association Realtors. Sales of new homes — the most important economic lodestar of the week — comes out Friday. They are the highlights of a holiday-shortened week.
Nick of time
The rebound in housing is a big deal. The manufacturing sector, which led the U.S. out of recession in 2009, cooled off considerably in the second half of the year. Businesses also became more skittish about hiring and investment. So some other sectors have to take up the slack.
“So it’s a good thing the housing sector continues to build up speed.”
It has accelerated to 20 mph thus far.
Is 20 mph faster or slower than stall speed?
$6 Trillion in deficit spending to prop up the housing bubble and all we get is 20 mph?
Hope and change promised so much more…
Your tears are delicious.
Consumers are feeling pinched by higher taxes and business investment has been choppy, so it’s a good thing the housing sector continues to build up speed.
The actual buyer of the physical asset is the by-product, like wheat chaff or rice husks, of the real product, the mortgages for the bond markets.
What higher taxes? (rhetorical question. For anyone making 50k or less, it’s insignificant)
Inflation is, BY FAR, the BIGGEST problem for most epople.
There is no “inflation”.
Jan. 18, 2013, 12:23 p.m. EST
Time bomb to market meltdown ticks louder
Commentary: Prepare for zero growth, no recovery, resource wars
By Paul B. Farrell, MarketWatch
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (MarketWatch) – Mr. Buffett, “do you think there will be another bubble leading to a huge recession?” asked the interviewer. Oh yes, in fact, “I can guarantee it.” Guarantee it.
The interviewer shook his head: “Why can’t we learn the lessons of the last recession? Look where greed has gotten us.” Then with one of his familiar impish grins, the great master replied, “Greed is fun for a while. People can’t resist it.” But “however far human beings have come, we haven’t grown up emotionally at all. We remain the same.”
There is massive housing inventory held off the market. Its’ release will crush housing prices. Buyer beware.
Let’s discuss the release.
There is massive housing inventory held off the market. Its’ release will crush housing prices.
So they won’t release the massive housing inventory all at once.
Those two sentences answer most of the questions that they pose.
Tsunami or trickle…. prices will crater and in fact are falling already.
There another OP in the NYT today all sturm and dang about the plight of the American worker. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/01/19/inequality-is-holding-back-the-recovery/?hp
Here’s a great reader response.
We need to be honest about the situation here.
- Due to globalization, the value of the American worker is declining. This drives down wages. Tough - you should be paid what you are able to sell your skills (or lack there of) for on the open market.
- Americans have developed an unrealistic sense of entitlement by twisting the idea of the American Dream into a shopping list for high-end toys. Just think about what material possessions the American Dream included 50 years ago vs today. Readjusting expectations is a more appropriate solution to this problem than trying to transfer wealth from the rich to the poor to chase an idiotic notion that everyone should hit some arbitrary level of equal outcome.
- The top earners in the US have skills well suited to the new global economy. They now have a bigger pool to play in, due to globalization, and will make even more money. While many here would argue about the value these folks generate, the fact remains that they are able to command the wages they do because their bosses think they are worth it.
So, what do we do? Nothing. Americans of all means live quite well by global standards, and virtually all social engineering approaches, aside from the risk of unintended consequences, will create a permanent dependent class that is unsustainable and unfair (see: Great Society). It is like asking the fastest runner in a race to slow down so the slowest doesn’t feel bad. Or should everyone get a medal?
Jan. 21, 2013 at 9:14 a.m.
The country should be working to try and improve the standard of living for its citizens and not be a colony (again) for the rest of the world’s manufactured goods.
Not with the neocon race back to the 19th century, will ever improve.
“- Due to globalization, the value of the American worker is declining.”
Wrong right from the start.
American productivity per worker is the highest in the world and has improved decade after decade.
We are being lied, cheated and stolen from. Why? Because we are too damn stupid to know it.
There IS a global labor glut. American productivity is mostly a function of improved technology. Whoever owns it benefits. Let’s say in 1970 you could create 100 widgets an hour in a factor or handle an hundred calls in a mail order business or credit card company call center. But today because of technology the output is three times as great with only 50% of the workers. Business owners being it sole, partnership, corp. are the beneficiary. Nobody is being “being lied, cheated and stolen from” The business profits belong to the business owners.
Ecofeco why don’t you start a business (maybe you already own one) and pay workers the high wages you think they deserve. Never mind if the market values their labor far lower. Pay them more.
Get ready for my broken record. The 1950 American middle class standard of living was an economic / historic anomaly. Could come back. Might come back. Would not count on it.
There is way for workers to arbitrage the current state of things. Most large companies and employee stock purchase programs. And anyone can invest in the stock market.
Ecofeco why don’t you start a business (maybe you already own one) and pay workers the high wages you think they deserve.
This argument is dumb and is an echo of the right’s “If you want to pay more taxes go ahead”.
High wages and good benefits come from macro public, business, economic and market policies that put in a structure that encourage high wages and good benefits.
They don’t come from a few businessmen here and there willing to bite the bullet for their fellow man.
I have and did. They were very happy and their performance was exemplary.
There are many examples of quite a few Amercian companies paying their employees a decent wage and they are not having ANY problem showing a profit each year.
Costco being a good example.
Any other “were you born yesterday” suggestions?
This might be a duplicate post if so apologies computer trouble today.
Improved productivity is due to tech. investments the businesses made. Business profits belong to the business owners not the workers. No one is “being lied, cheated and stolen from”
If I pay a yard man $20 to cut the grass with an old push mover and it takes him two hours but I then get a power mower and it takes him 1/2 hour so I pay him $5. How is he being lied, cheated or stolen from? There’s a global labor glut. Technology intensifies it. But workers can arbitrage the situation. Most large companies have employee stock purchase program and anyone can invest in the stock market.
The reports and data takes all this into account and it still ends up with the American worker being more productive than anyone else in the world.
Business profits can either pay for decent wages or they will go out of business. Poor service from low moral has bankrupted many a company.
“American productivity per worker is the highest in the world ”
Careful… inflation… either the real number from a place like shadowstats or the fake number like the .gov numbers.
Even worse is the effect of currency exchange rates.
If you’ve already decided on the outcome, the statistics can be manipulated to match, like all other economic figures. I wish our own media were as honest as Pravda was in the 70s, but they aren’t.
If you permanently unemploy / outsource the bottom 25% of manufacturing, decade after decade, eventually you end up with practically no one left but the ultra-high achievers in the ultra-high profit industries… olden days had 99 lazy J6Pack tightening bolts and one guy hand assembling $5M ICBM navigation systems, now a days you get 99 unemployed guys / pirate store owners / flippers and one guy still assembling the same $5M ICBM navigation systems. The average productivity level has exploded, but its meaningless.
An intellectually honest comparison would have to use honest money. An oz of gold buys about the same as it always has, ditto silver, so I’m guessing not too much has changed.
The job will always be more mobile than the worker.
Governments don’t mind importing the work, but the US of A is the only country in the world that allows a free-for-all in the Labor marketplace. Just about every other country (including China) has real restrictions/limitations on Joe Schmoe packing up, moving to Shanghai, and displacing a Chinese worker
The fate of the “top earners” remains to be seen. Some of these people are going to find out that they are not as valuable as they think they are.
I’ve met quite a few white collar folks who hated the “overpaid” blue collar guys in the 1980s and rooted for their jobs to go offshore, only to end with their jobs offshored as well in the 1990s.
Payback truly is a beach. The one with sharks and razor sharp coral just under the surf.
The top earners in the US have skills well suited to the new global economy.
BS. Most are just in jobs that pay a lot more than they would anywhere else in the world. Corporate execs, doctors, lawyers, they all make more here than most anywhere else in the world, with no better results.
The Steve Jobs are a tiny minority of the top earners.
The Steve Jobs are a tiny minority of the top earners.
That was what was meant by the term ‘top earners.’ A tiny minority. The rest might as well be serfs, as they don’t matter.
Dogbert/Ghost Writer to CEO:
“I finished ghost-writing your autobiography: ‘I was ridiculously lucky. The End.’”
CEO: “I was hoping you’d include something about all my hard work.”
Dogbert: “You didn’t work any harder than your gardener, and he lives in his truck.”
CEO: “What about my vision and my intuition?”
Dogbert: “My first draft had a chapter on your hallucinations and magical thinking. But I covered that ground with the title: ‘I’m a Delusional Sociopath and You Can Too.’”
CEO: “I’m starting to regret paying you in advance.”
- Americans have developed an unrealistic sense of entitlement by twisting the idea of the American Dream into a shopping list for high-end toys.
This is globalist, 1% propaganda jive.
Housing, Decent jobs, Health-care, education, decent hours and a dignified retirement are not “high-end toys”. They are life and have been put out of reach because of massive wealth and income inequality.
Or should everyone get a medal?
You’re damn right most hard working Americans should “get a medal”. That was a big point why America came to be. We were not exceptional because we worked hard. Work hard?? 95% of the world “works hard”.
America was exceptional because we had a system that invested in and rewarded most of the people, and not just the rich.
This Cato Institute propaganda of America’s “unrealistic sense of entitlement” is bull s&!t. Don’t bend over and buy it.
“unrealistic sense of entitlement”
The two big challenges facing us from a government spending perspective are Medicare at the Federal level and Pensions at the state level.
From everything that I read, the math is unrealistic today behind these challenges:
1. Rates of return for pensions assumed to be too high from an actuarial perspective;
2. Pension math doesn’t work when you pay in your whole career based on your then current salary, but get your benefit based on the last few (generally highest earning) years.
3. When you receive out 3x what you contribute in terms of Medicare benefits.
We are being unrealistic in terms of what these entitlements actually cost.
Higher inflation will easily take care of #1 and #2.
You seem to think that inflation won’t increase pension payouts (COLA adjustments), or the salaries on which the pensions are based.
“This is globalist, 1% propaganda jive.”
Does that 1% include rich progressives? Rich Hollywood? George Soros and other rich left wing globalists?
You’re confused. Progressives are not “globalists”.
Please. Ross Perot’s reform party is the only movement I can remember in my lifetime that was not globalist.
“Globalist” usally means “corporate transnational company”.
Ross was just a lot LESS globalist than everyone else. And rightly so.
He was correct on all points. But I had already known this 5 years before.
“The top earners in the US have skills well suited to the new global economy.”
And when these “top earners get it wrong” they are able to foist their losses on those without fancy global skills?
Americans of all means live quite well by global standards,
The elite are just angry that they aren’t selling enough suicide nets to make a profit.
“Americans of all means live quite well by global standards.”
No, actually, we don’t.
Relative to orphans picking scraps from a Mexican landfill we do.
‘Relative to orphans picking scraps from a Mexican landfill we do’
That’s a high standard.
Just remember…If your doing it, they want to know — If you have it, they want it.
Statist Progressives - The masters of other people’s business and resources.
Neocon apologists — the masters of grade school kids getting shot by Bushmasters, followed by admonitions to anyone who cares to “mind your own business.”
“mind your own business.”
Tell me the last time you mentioned how many minority youths were gunned down per day in our major cities? You want them armed and you want good people disarmed. Why?
A man and wife walk to their car at night after a movie and are approached by multiple people. One or more of those people pull a gun, demand money and force the man and wife get down on their knees.
Outcome #1: The assailants take the woman’s purse and the mans wallet. The man and wife both begin begging for their lives and are consequently executed with gun shots to the head.
Outcome#2: The man or wife pulls a concealed firearm, fires and strikes the attackers ending the encounter.
Out of those two, which outcome would you prefer?
I know, you prefer outcome #3. That’s the outcome where the bad guys take the couple’s money, wish them a nice evening and skip away whistling a show tune.
Tell me the last time you mentioned how many minority youths were gunned down per day in our major cities? You want them armed and you want good people disarmed. Why?
Isn’t that your solution, Nick? Maybe if those youths had been armed they would have been able to defend themselves? Right?
Yes Mike, thanks. The hard working law abiding among the animals should have firearms to protect themselves. You make a very very good point.
Posted on January 21, 2013 at 1:17 PM
Updated today at 4:32 PM
Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter: @pmurphywwl
NEW ORLEANS — Five teenagers were shot in the Central City neighborhood of New Orleans shortly after Monday’s Martin Luther King Day parade moved passed the area.
Police spent the afternoon collecting evidence and shell casings outside a grocery at Martin Luther King and LaSalle.
Investigators say shortly after 1 p.m., a late model, white, two-door sedan drove past the store, and a gunman opened fire on a group teenagers standing on the corner in front of the store.
“So far we know of five injuries,” said NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas. “We do not expect that any of those injuries are fatal at this time.”
The shooting is more than a little unsettling for neighbors who witnessed the crime. Many of them were still outside enjoying the day after watching the parade which passed by within a half hour of the shooting.
“I just heard the gunshots, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom,” said Tanile Legendre. “I ran outside and a saw all the kids just scattering. It must have been just 15 minutes after the parade.”
“It’s not the first time,” said Ashley Stewart. “It’s always something like that going on. It makes us scared and keep your children locked up inside. Can’t even just hang out and talk to your friends, you know, and sit down and have fun without something like that going on around here.”
The significance of this shooting on Martin Luther King Day on Martin Luther King Boulevard is not lost on people who live in this Central City neighborhood.
“I just think that’s so sad for them to be doing that, shooting and killing on Martin Luther King Day,” said Legendre. “It’s embarrassing to the community.”
“Can’t even just hang out and talk to your friends, you know, and sit down and have fun without something like that going on around here,” said Stewart.
Serpas said a surveillance camera at the store caught the shooting on video.
“Interesting, we saw the video and was watching the video and a police car passed in front of the store about a minute or less before the white vehicle came behind it and fired on these young men.”
If you can help identify the white sedan or the shooter, call Crimestoppers at 822-1111.
Statist Progressives - oyxmoron
The very phrase negates itself.
You’re smarter than that, you see what’s happening. Do you have the balls to stand up for freedom?
Gee, what a surprise.
Posting that link twice does not change the reality that the hard data shows that we are cooler now than we were in 1998, which is contrary to all the predictions of the AGW computer models’ predictions in 1998.
Not your typical short sale:
JUL 1989 - $212,300
——- 20 yrs ——-
JUN 2009 - $1,825,000
Assessed property value for 2012 $94,620
Wow, all of that lush landscaping and not too far from the canal systems…hmm wonder if someone is going to purchase themselves 1.6Mil worth of scorpion infestation?
Notice that pickup truck next to the garage, lift kit and rims? This isn’t your grandpa’s kind of depression.
Now THAT is a WHITE house…..
Did Obama mention the screwed over savers in his inaugural address?
or the screwed over renters who have to pay on time every month to keep a roof over our heads?
Renters Affordable Modification Program (RAMP)
There are no renter songs.
There are no renter songs.
Doesn’t “Hallelujah I’m a bum!” count?
He put his hand on Bibles and said he would protect and defend the constitution. I wonder which constitution he was speaking of? The one he called outdated and a “charter of negative liberties”? Food for thought.
“ON WEDNESDAY morning, the Bundesbank, Germany’s central bank, announced that it would move 674 tonnes of its gold reserves (currently worth about €30 billion) from vaults in New York and Paris to its home base in Frankfurt.
To understand why the threat to destroy the gold was meaningless, it helps to understand what the inert metal was doing before it was stolen [In the movie "Die Hard With A Vengeance"] (basically nothing). Yesterday’s statement from the Bundesbank tells you all you need to know:”
Currency has value because people believe it has value. It is supposed to be scarce and nearly impossible to duplicate. Gold has those qualities. With the overly-clever central banks and their money printing, there is a concern that its scarcity will drop, reducing the value of the existing stock.
The Bundesbank’s decision suggests that some in Germany are worried about the public’s continued trust in the euro as a currency suitable for conducting transactions and making investments.
Yes, the Germans have no unhappy history with print-happy central bankers:
There is no justice for Donkeys
Nash 94.7’, aka WRXP 94.7, becomes first country radio station in New York City in 17 years Parent company Cumulus boasts new presence as ‘America’s Country Station’
Definitely off topic but interesting
A rural county in Ireland has supported a proposal to allow drink-driving to prevent people from becoming depressed.
Kerry County councillors voted in favour of a motion that would issue permits to isolated older residents, allowing them to have ‘two or three drinks’ and still drive home, according to The Journal.ie.
Councillor Danny Healy-Rae argued that rural drivers had never killed anyone on the roads in Kilgarvan and told the newspaper: “A lot of these people are living in isolated rural areas where there’s no public transport of any kind, and they end up at home looking at the four walls, night in and night out, because they don’t want to take the risk of losing their licence.”
they end up at home looking at the four walls, night in and night out, because they don’t want to take the risk of losing their licence.
That rationale seems very doubtful.
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