July 12, 2013

Bits Bucket for July 12, 2013

Post off-topic ideas, links, and Craigslist finds here.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 02:55:05

If you take on mortgage debt at current massively inflated housing prices, you’ll enslave yourself for the rest of your life.

“Debt is bondage.”~ Suze Orman, May 11, 2013

Don’t Be A Debt Donkey®

Comment by Resistor
2013-07-12 03:09:48

“This listing is special, John. You guys can do this!”


Comment by Biggvs Richardvs
2013-07-12 10:43:01

…aaaaand THAT sums up exactly why I’m not married. I refuse to be someone’s “starter husband.”

“You’re house needs a woman’s touch.”

No it doesn’t. It’s exactly the way I like it, and if you don’t like it: There’s the door.

Worked like a charm with the last GF. Still had to dump her though - she smoked too much.


Comment by Blue Skye
2013-07-12 12:17:01

I live on a boat and anm not married.

There’s the door means a lot more here!

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 12:27:27

“You’re house needs a woman’s touch.”

No it doesn’t. It’s exactly the way I like it, and if you don’t like it: There’s the door.


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Comment by oxide
2013-07-12 13:25:59

Depends on what she smoked?

“Your house needs a woman’s touch” is an insult. “Your house needs MY woman’s touch” is only a slightly less epic fail.

A smarter woman would have just put her touches in without saying anything. Ideally, the touches would have happened on their own without your noticing. If you didn’t like it, she would be out the door herself, I suppose.

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Comment by polly
2013-07-12 16:25:38

Or you could try dating people you actually like…

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Comment by inchbyinch
2013-07-12 19:11:38

Polly and oxide
Thank you.

If you aren’t friends to begin with,
you’re doomed.

Comment by azdude
2013-07-12 05:14:08

I bet you watch a lot of jim cramer and cocaine kudlows shows too.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 05:19:18

Pick yourself up off the floor and cheer up. Falling housing prices to dramatically lower and more affordable levels is positive bullishness and good for the economy.

Comment by azdude
2013-07-12 05:40:16

are you throwing up more shanties today? my equity is getting larger everyday thanks to bernake. Trying to figure out what wine I want with lobster tonight.

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Comment by goon squad
Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 06:18:11

“Get what you can get for your house today because it’s going to be much less tomorrow for many years to come.”

Exactly. Especially in light of the 25 MILLION excess empty houses hitting the market over the next few years.

Comment by Blue Skye
2013-07-12 06:56:32

All that Bernanke is doing for you dude is baiting the trap. Have some cheese.

Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 08:51:04

All that Bernanke is doing for you dude is baiting the trap. Have some cheese.

But since we all know that someone else will end up holding the bag when he drives away in his Escalade, it’s a win-win for him.

Comment by I saw it coming
2013-07-12 09:29:18

All that Bernanke is doing for you dude is baiting the trap. Have some cheese.

As long as dude can perfectly time when to pull out, he will be fine. I won’t recommend though, many unwanted pregnecies have resulted following this method.

Comment by Biggvs Richardvs
2013-07-12 10:52:19

Yes, but Bernanke promised us that the economy is on the pill, so we have nothing to worry about there.

Comment by Biggvs Richardvs
2013-07-12 11:11:12

Update: Unfortunately the pill turned out to be penicillin.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-07-12 20:55:00

Update: Unfortunately the pill turned out to be penicillin Vicodin.

July 12, 2013, 7:44 a.m. EDT
The looming threat to the housing recovery
Have the financial markets been taking too many painkillers?
By Brett Arends

A while back, a very good friend of mine had an operation on his arm. In the aftermath, the doctors gave him some Vicodin to deal with the pain. When I next saw him, his arm was in a sling. I asked him how he was doing.

He was in a terrific mood. “I’m as high as a kite,” he said and started laughing. I’ve never seen him so happy.

I don’t mean to be Mr. Gloom, but I sometimes wonder if investors are in a similar state of unreality. For the past few years, a massive dose of free money, thanks to zero-percent interest rates and “quantitative easing,” has sparked a similar sense of euphoria in many financial markets. One shouldn’t overdo analogies, but free money and Vicodin have one thing in common.

They wear off.

Comment by Resistor
Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 06:24:37

Never smile at a crocodile …

Comment by Ol'Bubba
2013-07-12 07:35:14

I imagine you don’t see that many crocodiles in Colorado.

Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 08:44:33

And I like it that way!

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-07-12 21:01:56

Got cougars? (And I don’t mean the lascivious age 40+ female human variety…)

Comment by goon squad
2013-07-12 06:04:36

“He was a career federal bureaucrat with a dark side, inflating government contracts by millions of dollars and then shaking down contractors for the proceeds. The money funded a lavish and sordid lifestyle — a real estate empire in Northern Virginia, leased BMWs, Neiman Marcus shopping sprees, and mistresses in three states and the Philippines.

On Thursday, a federal judge sentenced Kerry F. Khan, the mastermind of a contracting scam of “historic proportions,” to nearly two decades behind bars. It was even more than prosecutors had requested because of the “staggering” scope of the scheme. U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan said he also wanted to deter other would-be criminals in the billion-dollar world of federal contracting.

“You made history for the wrong reasons,” Sullivan told Khan, 55, a former Army Corps of Engineers program manager and the ringleader of a network of corrupt public officials and government contractors who stole more than $30 million through inflated billings and fake invoices.

U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. has called it the largest bribery and bid-rigging scheme in federal contracting history.


Comment by P.T. Barnum
2013-07-12 06:31:08

“… mistresses in three states and the Phillipines.”

He goes to jail and the mistresses simply move on to the next guy.

One born every minute.

(I like it.)

Comment by P.T. Barnum
2013-07-12 06:42:33

The game men play is money. The game women play is men.

Comment by 2banana
2013-07-12 07:38:56

He should of stole his government money the honest way.

Open of a TBTF bank or become a Corzine FOO (Friend of obama)

Comment by Neuromance
2013-07-12 10:40:16

“The big thieves hang the little ones.”

Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 08:56:32

The money funded a lavish and sordid lifestyle — a real estate empire in Northern Virginia, leased BMWs

I thought that only posers leased cars.

This reminds me of a coworker at an old job. She was from Boston and drove a leased Mercedes while the rest of us drove older and more mainstream cars, most of which were paid for. She was very image conscious and we all shook our heads when she leased her Mercedes. But then again, none of us grew up in the self image conscious east coast.

Comment by goon squad
2013-07-12 09:35:16

read what the mr. money mustache blog has to say about throwing money away on cars (he lives in longmont, btw).

i experienced the same bling attitude in south florida. i have never met people so emotionally invested in what they drive and what people think about what they drive than in broward/pbc. sigh, loosers.

Comment by King Barry Hussein (Joe)
2013-07-12 13:24:37

I’m investigating his thoughts now. I found 2 posts to start with…




Also a few posts in the forums (by other people who follow his writings).

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Comment by sleepless_near_seattle
2013-07-12 09:37:59

But then again, none of us grew up in the self image conscious east coast.

What about the image conscious southwest coast?

Comment by sleepless_near_seattle
2013-07-12 09:43:49

BTW, we’re starting to see many more exotic cars up here these days. And the pretty young things are signing up for entry level Euro cars more and more.

You’re more likely to see a line of Priuses or Leafs (Prii? Leaves?) than Ferraris (is Ferrari already the plural?) here but 10 years ago even seeing one in a year’s time was pretty rare. Even then it was usually a mint vintage vehicle that was in storage most of the year.

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Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 09:59:44

“What about the image conscious southwest coast?”

There is that too, though I think Californians are more laid back and somewhat less image conscious than New Englanders. They are more likely to drive a Honda than a Beamer.

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Comment by Rental Watch
2013-07-12 13:13:14

I think it depends on where you are. In S. Cal, there is much more image tied to what you drive. In N. Cal, less so.

Comment by sleepless_near_seattle
2013-07-12 13:22:36

I was being a bit cheeky, there. I thought InCO hailed from S. California.

…none of us grew up in the self image conscious east coast.

Comment by King Barry Hussein (Joe)
2013-07-12 10:37:17

In DC/MD/NoVA it’s seen as very important to have the most current model. If you drive a 2009 Audi it might be nice, but other people who drive similar cars will know the body styles and you’ll get a reputation ding for having a 4 yr old car. It’s a very weird psychology. Just another reason I’m glad to take a communist train to work.

Also, it’s perverse, but people use “lease brokers” who work with different dealerships throughout a 50-100 mile radius. If you can afford to throw, say, $2500 to the lease agent as a fee, he can put you in a 3 yr lease for an A8 or BMW 8 series for a low enough lease rate that it’s worth it. And he’ll get the dealer to throw in all the service and give you higher mileage allowance. This is because the lease broker sends them so much business.

I never thought I’d say that leasing makes sense, but I know partners here who lease 8 series BMW for like $700/month with surprisingly little money up front.

Comment by 2banana
2013-07-12 11:15:08

For $700

You could afford a $100,000 mortgage (30 years at 4%)

In many places - not a bad house.

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Comment by King Barry Hussein (Joe)
2013-07-12 11:35:53

These guys have 1MM+ houses. 100k doesn’t buy sh*t in places people want to live/work. And 700/month isn’t bad for a new 100k car with the maintenance thrown in.

Comment by nh transplant
2013-07-12 14:47:15

Define “people”.

Comment by Lionel
2013-07-12 11:47:24

Criminal? This Khan guy sounds as if he’d make a great Fed chair.

Comment by ecofeco
2013-07-12 12:03:55


Comment by Neuromance
2013-07-12 13:44:59

Being sophisticated about how those in your power can funnel cash to you is essential. If it’s done in a hamfisted manner, it at best can look bad, at worst be criminal. But, if it’s done by the book (which Congress itself has literally written), it can be quite lucrative and useful.

Comment by ecofeco
2013-07-12 12:01:26

Damn greedy unions!

Oh wait…

Comment by goon squad
2013-07-12 06:18:50

If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon - President Barack Obama

“Armed with batons and horses, dozens of Miami police officers went through riot training on Wednesday just days before a verdict is expected to be reached in the George Zimmerman trial.

“It’s a mandatory training. All these officers are given this equipment, and it’s in the event we have civil unrest at any given moment our officers are ready on a minute’s notice,” Miami Police spokesman Freddie Cruz told CBS Miami.

“This is purely coincidence” that the riot training falls so close to the verdict, Mr. Cruz assured.


Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 06:25:50

“This is purely coincidence” that the riot training falls so close to the verdict, Mr. Cruz assured.

Uh huh, sure, why not? And the check is in the mail too.

Comment by nickpapageorgio
2013-07-12 14:02:25

If had to lay down a wager, given the politicization of this event, I would say the fix is in and has been since the beginning. To jail he will go.

And if he does go to jail, we should all be afraid…very afraid.

Prison will not be kind to the only known “white hispanic” human being yet discovered. What prison gang will he side with?

Comment by MightyMike
2013-07-12 14:42:31

I mentioned this earlier this week, but the term “white hispanic” has been around for decades. The Census bureau does not consider hispanic to be a race. Thus there are white hipanics, black hispanics, and Americans who are just hispanic. All of the major news organizations follow this logic. Thus when you see breakdowns of the population in the newspaper you’ll often see a little footnote at the bottom that reads, “Hispanics may be of any race.”

In fact, around half of all Americans who identify as hispanic also identify as white.

Comment by nh transplant
2013-07-12 14:51:20

Nah….this may have been an option on the census for years but nobody refers to people as white Hispanics in day to day conversation and Zimmy is the first person that the media has referred to in such a way. It’s all about the narrative. This story has no legs if Zimmy isn’t white.

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Comment by MightyMike
2013-07-12 18:10:22

I’m sorry, but that’s not correct. If Nick above is referring to the news media, there have been plenty articles in papers over the years that refer to white hispanics. As I also write the other day, the media even more frequently writes about non-hispanic whites. This implies that there are hispanic whites. And I wrote, about half of all American hispanics counsider themselves to be white.

Comment by nickpapageorgio
2013-07-12 23:11:40

“It’s all about the narrative. This story has no legs if Zimmy isn’t white.”

Bingo. The media botched this, they assumed Zimmerman was white until the public got a look at him, then changed his description to “white hispanic”.

Comment by localandlord
2013-07-12 14:41:54

Jet fixr from yesterday”

“And remember, that the local police were going to give him a pass. And didn’t actually conduct an investigation until weeks after the incident.”

Followed by dozens of posts about who was in the wrong. I have no opinion who’s fault it was. I don’t need to - I’m not a juror.

As Ben mentioned people get killed by strangers every day . Bar brawls, robberies, gang wars, mistaken identities. Sometimes they are of different races. This isn’t that different.

The real injustice here is the police letting this go without a proper investigation. That gets lost in the discussion of the crime details. I’m not even black and I’m pissed.

BTW Jetfixr, I posted a reply to you on the july 10 bb.

Comment by Brett
2013-07-12 07:00:43

This article is priceless… Why would anyone take advice from CNBC?


Mortgage Rates Rising, But There are Plenty of Alternatives for Home Buyers

Rising rates are a worry: 30-year fixed rate mortgages have gone from 3.5 percent to about 4.5 percent in the past month

First, the rise in rates is unlikely to deter most buyers. Let’s take a couple buying a $375,000 house…they put down 20 percent ($75,000) and get a mortgage for the remaining $300,000.

There’s no question they are paying more for the mortgage now.

$300,000 Monthly Mortgage Payments:

At 4.5%: $1,520
At 3.5%: $1,347

The difference is about $180 a month, or $2,100 more a year. That’s not chicken feed, but it may not be a deterrent for most people.

First off, it’s deductible. Assuming a 25 percent tax bracket, that $2,100 will only be $1,675. Second, to qualify for that $300,000 loan the couple is likely to have to make about $75,000 a year. $1,675 is 2.2 percent of $75,000.

And remember: this assumes no price appreciation. If that home appreciates even two percent a year, that is $7,500 a year.

Second, there are other mortgage programs at lower rates than a 30-year mortgage. I just got off the phone with a friend of mine who is mortgage broker in Philadelphia.

Example: a 15-30 balloon program, which is fixed for the first 15 years at a 30-year amortization rate and then becomes a balloon payment at the end of 15 years. In a balloon payment, the entire outstanding balance becomes due; the investor usually just gets a new mortgage. But most home owners don’t stay in their home 15 years: the average home owners stays about 8 years. The current rate: 3.5 percent.

There are other programs, like a 10-1 Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM). Here, you get a fixed rate mortgage for the first 10 years, which then converts to an ARM that adjusts each year. Current rate: 4.125 percent.

My point: there are plenty of alternative products out there to keep rates lower, if that is what is needed.

Comment by rms
2013-07-12 07:14:15

That didn’t read like CNBC’s Diana Olick.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 07:24:07

“Mortgage Rates Rising, But There are Plenty of Alternatives for Home Buyers”

For certain. It’s called renting or leasing at half the monthly cost of buying at current inflated asking prices. Then buy later after prices fall to dramatically lower and more affordable levels.(Which is roughly 65% less than current asking prices)

Comment by azdude
2013-07-12 17:26:09

spread your rhetoric somewhere else.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 18:14:18

“Why buy a house today when you can rent for half the cost? Buy later after prices crater for 65% less.”

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Comment by Overtaxed
2013-07-12 10:18:02

The interesting result of this could be the “trapping” of people in their homes. People who own today with a 3.5% MTG are very unlikely to move, especially if prices go down, to another home. A mortgage at that low a level, at least to me, make the loan very sticky.

What will the result of the loss of mobility be over the next 10-15 years as people who would normally pull up stakes to move to another job realize that they could never live the same lifestyle, even with a raise, and decide not to move.

Comment by King Barry Hussein (Joe)
2013-07-12 11:41:28

I’m thirsting for higher rates that will make it harder for “howmuchamonth” types to buy, this allowing the scooping up of rentals for straight cash. Every open house I’ve gone to recently has been priced as if rates were still ~4%. I think the only way to get 4% now is to do an ARM and even then it’s 4.125% for a 10/1 ARM with prime credit.

I think in the lower-middleish market I’m looking for rentals I’m really competing against people who would have 30 yr fixed rates more like 5% because of credit below 750. FHA will back loans quite a bit below 750, actually. I think I’ve seen as low as 600. (Someone correct me on this.)

Comment by oxide
2013-07-12 13:00:36

You know what’s worse than watching CNBC? Watching CNBC steal from the hard-earned reputation of PBS. PBS produced the show for over 30 years, earning respect, rewards, and reputation. Within a year of Paul Kangas’s retirement in 2009, they sexed the thing up and sold the show private, bounced it around to various private groups, and laid off a dozen regulars. In March, the whole shebang was sold to CNBC. As far as I’m concerned, it’s now contaminated beyond recall and I see no reason to watch it again.

Comment by Arizona Slim
2013-07-12 14:13:08

Count me as a Paul Kangas fan. Wishing you the BEST of goodbyes…

Comment by Blue Skye
2013-07-12 07:02:21

From the Oswego River in Central NY: There were a few cruisers at the wall in Phoenix and a few waiting in Oswego to cross Ontario. Passed two on the river. The turbulent conditions at some of the locks, especially at Minetto were challenging because of all the water. The lock master there expressed surprise that some are still traveling with all the high water. Well, there were no alerts posted!

Again on the Oswego River zero construction and only one For Sale sign. Everything is well kept, no sign of any (newly) abandoned houses. Definitely Twilight Zonish.

Waiting for a fair crossing, soon to leave the realm of the Blue Heron and the Bald Eagle.

Comment by 2banana
2013-07-12 07:42:00

Just for fun.

Find someone who lives in the boonies in upstate NY, in a non special house on an acre.

Then ask him what is taxes are.

When he replies in the 5 digit range ask him…

Isn’t bigger and bigger government just great!

(assuming he/she is not a public union goon).

Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 08:48:47

I don’t understand why you get so bent out of shape over this. You don’t live there, right? If New Yorkers are willing to put up with high taxation, why do you care? They can always vote with their feet if they are so inclined.

Comment by goon squad
2013-07-12 08:52:27

regardless of where he lives, he still gets to pay federal taxes to pay overpaid federal government contractors.

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Comment by I saw it coming
2013-07-12 09:25:24

I think he lives in upstate NY.

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Comment by In Colorado
2013-07-12 09:57:01

If he does, why doesn’t he leave? Surely he would be much happier in Texas. Or is he just bitter that he never landed one of those union goon jobs?

Comment by snowgirl
2013-07-12 10:40:21

As I recall there’s a redhead in Canada keeping him in striking distance of the border.

Comment by goon squad
2013-07-12 11:32:41

Skye is in upstate NY. Banana is in North Carolina.

Comment by MightyMike
2013-07-12 14:46:36

Some just enjoy getting angry. It just feels good to them. Even it’s taxes that they don’t have to pay, it’s fun to get angry about them.

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Comment by Blue Skye
2013-07-12 15:00:27

Banana, taxes on a $50,000 leanto in the boonies would be well under $1500 if it’s your primary.

Comment by Neuromance
Comment by Rental Watch
2013-07-12 13:15:02

They should have reinstated Glass Steagall instead of giving markets 3+ years of uncertainty while trying to implement thousands of pages of rules based on the disaster of Dodd Frank.

Comment by Neuromance
2013-07-12 13:34:06

Already a lot of pushback against Warren on this issue. Jamie Dimon said Glass Steagall wouldn’t have prevented the crisis. True… but it would have limited the blast damage (bailouts, moral hazard, undermining of the rule of law) when the banks couldn’t credibly hold consumer deposits hostage.

However, “privatize the profits, socialize the losses”, enabled when banks can credibly hold consumer deposits hostage, is very profitable for both politicians and their big donors on Wall Street.

Elizabeth Warren, You Can’t Prevent the Past
By: John Carney | Senior Editor, CNBC.com
Published: Friday, 12 Jul 2013

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon and his cohorts responded with some version of “This wouldn’t have prevented the crisis.” Former Congressman Barney Frank made a similar comment when asked about it on CNBC this morning.


Comment by 2banana
2013-07-12 08:41:55

Dear gawd.

If you live in NYC. Your quality of life is about to go off a cliff.


NYPD officers told to stop ‘proactive policing’ NYPD- PC run amuck
dailymail | 11 July 2013 | Ryan G

New York City Police are being warned against proactively policing in response to anti-discrimination legislation passed recently by the city legislature. The city council last month passed two bills that will make it easier to sue the NYPD for racial profiling, and did so with a veto-proof majority.

In response, cops are being told to only answer radio calls and respond to crimes they see taking place – a big change from the proactive policing started in the 1990s under then-mayor Rudy Giuliani. The first bill, which creates an inspector general to oversee the department, passed 40-11, according to reports. The second bill, which allows people to sue for racial profiling, passed 34-17. The bills garnered the votes needed to override any mayoral veto.

Giving the example of an incident involving a black male in his 20s, wearing a white t-shirt, jeans and a Yankees hat, the officer said he can only get on the radio and say ‘suspect is a male wearing a Yankees hat, jeans and a white t-shirt.’

Mentioning a suspect’s race could expose the officer to a discrimination lawsuit in a department that won’t indemnify officers against infractions as minor as parking tickets, the officer says, asking ‘why should I believe they;ll have my back?’

Taking it a step further, the officer said that quality of life crimes like drug dealing, people walking around with weapons, and other similar offenses will go largely unpoliced for fear of legal action being taken against an officer.

Comment by oxide
2013-07-12 09:54:57

Why are you dear gawding? Isn’t this the “less government” you’ve been pining for, bananaboi?

Comment by mathguy
2013-07-12 11:03:48

Right, not like he’s been asking for reduction in federal troops, lessening of Federal reserve power to inflate away our money.. no this of course is the less gov’t he’s been asking for.. Thanks for opening our eyes oxide!

Comment by King Barry Hussein (Joe)
2013-07-12 10:53:11

NYC is my favorite place I ever lived and I didn’t even live in a fancy area (far upper west side, a few subway stops before The Bronx).

The nicer parts of NYC are like heaven.

Comment by goon squad
Comment by ecofeco
2013-07-12 12:07:56

“The nicer parts of NYC are like heaven.”

The nicer parts of ANYWHERE are, well, nicer. :lol:

Comment by imaadesi
2013-07-12 08:45:10

Folks who are demonizing Obama or democrats for the increase in number of people who get food stamps or some sort of government assistance, either do not realise or not able to understand why this has happned.
It is mostly because of republican policies and democrats are also to blame. Republicans openly say and brainwash people in believing that unregulated market is good. Democrats says regulation is good but they ultimately go for laws which are written to circumvent the same thing that they are trying to avoid.

Folks says let market take care of it self. How is one going to survive on minimum wage? People who talk about it have no idea what happens when you get minimum wage. About food stamps (i know there is lot of fraud going on), a family can get perhaps at the most around $500/month, so who in their right mind would not take a job (if you can get one), which would pay you (say minimum wage is $8/hr) 8 x 40 = $320/week = around $1280/month. Folks earning minimum wage perhaps qualify for government assistance and depending on individual circumustances, they can get perhaps get $500/month. And who is paying for these, we all are paying.

My point is what do you want these folks to do? what should they do to a have better life? I guess, there is nothing we can do. Let free market decide how much they can earn. Do you know how minimum wage folks live in India or any hird world country? They live in dumps and don’t even get basic needs of life. Do you want western / developed world become like third world country? And that is where this country going. Some folks are super rich and others are getting poorer and poorer. The one differance between first world and third world was or still is that, no matter what job you have in first world, you would have a reasonably decent life. But in third world, if you are at minimum wage, you have a miserable life.

Comment by I saw it coming
2013-07-12 09:06:17

Do you want western / developed world become like third world country?

The irony is US is fast approaching a third world even with all the laws and regulations regarding minimum wage and government benefits.

Comment by ecofeco
2013-07-12 12:10:50

“Do you want western / developed world become like third world country? “

Short answer: yes they do.

The lesson of Marie Antoinette has been long forgotten.

Comment by Rental Watch
2013-07-12 13:26:06

Uncertainty is bad for business hiring and business investment. Globalization is bad for US competitiveness from a wage standpoint, and requires investment to make us more competitive/create new businesses.

Long-implemented, highly complex legislation adds to uncertainty in a BIG way.

When Obama had a majority in the House and Senate, we got:

1. Obamacare, the important parts of which have yet to be fully implemented; and
2. Dodd Frank, the important parts of which have yet to be fully implemented.

The existence of #1 and #2 altered business investment and business hiring–and NOT in a good way.

I blame Obama for not understanding how business/hiring, etc. reacts to such legislation…especially immediately after one of the biggest economic downturns in 80 years.

Don’t get me wrong, you really can’t stop the effect of globalization, nor can you stop the fact that recoveries after a financial crisis are typically longer than usual.

However, this administration made it worse by rubber stamping Dodd/Frank and Obamacare. There was a simpler way to deal with regulation than Dodd Frank…it’s called the reinstatement of Glass Steagall, but the Democrats couldn’t help but to get their fingers into all parts of the economy…including lots of parts that had nothing to do with the crash.

Thank goodness the House went to the Republicans.

Comment by goon squad
2013-07-12 09:16:29

a heartwarming article about the invisible hand of the free market private prison industry, lots of inmate rapes and assaults, and bonuses for ceo’s, but at least no public union goons got overpaid.


Comment by (Neo-) Jetfixr
2013-07-12 10:14:16

Could be worse.

A “Sharknado” could come ashore……..

Comment by polly
2013-07-12 11:49:01

I sort of watched that last night. It isn’t like you had to pay close attention to follow the story. It was awsomely bad. Epically bad. Instant classic. Especially the last bit with the chain saw. I’m still giggling. Not sure it will replace the SyFy movie (movies?) where California falls into the ocean as my favorite on that channel, but is is up there.

Comment by (Neo-) Jetfixr
2013-07-12 12:58:07

Without a doubt, the STUPIDEST movie I’ve ever (partially) seen. It even beats out “Plan 9″

It’s like they polled a bunch of 6 year olds on what they thought would make a cool sci-fi movie.

OTOH…..the -fixr’s movie review:

I thought “The Lone Ranger” was pretty good. The movie didn’t take itself too seriously. I’m starting to get a man-crush on Johnny Depp. He’s not afraid to stick his neck out, doing different characters.

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Comment by inchbyinch
2013-07-12 19:26:45

Johnny Depp
Read Johnny made $350M on the Pirate movies. Disney’s bean counters are expecting at least a $160M loss on the Lone Ranger. Jonny has made the studios almost $8B dollars in his move career.
He’s talented, crazy enough, and nice enough to be around a long time.
He use to be a musician (electric guitar), btw. My teenage niece was over for dinner recently and she drools over Depp.
When Dark Shadows came up my husband drooled over Michelle Pfeiffer. LOL

Comment by Rental Watch
2013-07-12 13:30:04

Awesomely bad indeed. I lost it during several parts. Instant cult-classic.

I watched the second half of it. My favorite part was when they got the entire pool to explode by adding a little gasoline. A close second was when they smelled gasoline in the car and ran away only for the car (that wasn’t on fire or smoking) to instantly explode.

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Comment by polly
2013-07-12 16:22:25

Definitely has potential for Mythbusters treatment.

Comment by Dale
2013-07-12 16:42:46

Jetfixr - Can a helicopter really fly beside a tornado (or sharknado) close enough to throw something into the center and not be affected?

Other than that,….. pretty much believable.

My favorite comment on sharknado so far……”Look at those effects. They must have spent hundreds of dollars.”

Comment by Rental Watch
2013-07-12 23:41:59


This interview is beyond brilliant…my favorite:

“They gave me about half a page of notes which I read and replied “This is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever read… I’M IN!””

Comment by Rental Watch
2013-07-12 23:47:19

You’re right…the rest was totally believable Dave.


Just like the part where the girl fell out of the helicopter to be eaten whole by a shark only to be rescued by Steve Sanders with a chainsaw after the shark fell back to earth, and ate Steve whole as well (shark has a big appetite).

Comment by Biggvs Richardvs
2013-07-12 10:23:37

Comment by Prime_Is_Contained
2013-07-11 23:39:05

I’m sure many/most/all of them were direct beneficiaries of the Fed™’s counterfeiting easy money policies.


I think I need a drink….

I like the way you think, Biggvs. You drink is on me at the next Seattle HBB Meetup… Were you at the last one, btw?

No I wasn’t - didn’t know it was happening or I probably would have! How about we plan the next one? It’s salmon season so I’m out odd weekends. If you just want to grab a beer drop an email to a$$hole(at)digitaltoiletpaper.com (yes it’s real).

Comment by snowgirl
2013-07-12 11:57:19

Attempting to fight the same daily arguments, you’re missing the red meat out there: (Love those rogue feds….yes rogue, not rouge which means red….ROGUE which means those that go against the grain)

Tyler Durdenville: The “mutinying” half of the Fed - that which the FOMC minutes indicated wanted an end to QE by the end of 2013 - is not going to take Bernanke’s Wednesday steamrolling lying down. Enter Charles Plosser, who becomes a voting member next year:


Good luck there. But here is the punchline:


Finally, someone from the Fed admits it was Greenspan’s and Bernanke’s ruinous cheap money policies that created the last housing bubble. As for preventing another housing “boom” or bubble as it is popularly known, we have two words: too late.

Comment by Biggvs Richardvs
2013-07-12 12:00:37

Damn snowgirl that’s awesome stuff. Where’d it come from?

(more please)

Comment by snowgirl
2013-07-12 16:07:59

That’s a Zero Hedge gem. They always report when the Fed Presidents have something interesting to say. Also good w/live feeds for certain types of breaking news. Overwhelmingly bearish. You have to be able to translate hyperbole. But still lots of gems especially in the comment section.

Comment by rms
2013-07-12 19:18:48

“Finally, someone from the Fed admits it was Greenspan’s and Bernanke’s ruinous cheap money policies that created the last housing bubble. As for preventing another housing “boom” or bubble as it is popularly known, we have two words: too late.”

We are still pretending to be dealing with the first housing bubble, which was implemented to chum the investment waters as the well-off early boomers approached retirement. Unfortunately other issues such as the off-shoring of jobs and the obesity health crisis have come together at the same time culminating in an “economic perfect storm.”

The deepening middle-east crisis and the recent bottom falling out of the bond markets only add to the unwieldy situation facing the central bankers. When the fed’s bilge pumps seize-up this economic ship is going to sink faster than the Edmond Fitzgerald, IMHO.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-07-12 21:09:16


What do the anti-boom FOMC members have against policies to enrich wealthy homeowners at the expense of young families who face the prospect of renting forever, as they have no hope of getting on the property ladder at Fed-engineered artificially-inflated housing prices?

Comment by King Barry Hussein (Joe)
2013-07-12 12:32:11

Janet Napolitano just cashed in:


She’s set to become the next President of the U of California system (Berkeley, UCLA, UCSD, UC Irvine, UC-Davis, UCSF, etc.). And she’ going to make 3x the money she made heading DHS ($601k).

Comment by (Neo-) Jetfixr
2013-07-12 13:02:43

Our “elite” are totally inbred, and “too big to fail”

You or I fook up, at best (if you aren’t in jail), you’ll be in a cardboard box within a year.

These idiots screw up, and it might mean the make 4.5 million/year, instead of 5.0

Comment by measton
2013-07-12 14:40:33

cashing in would be becoming a lobbiest.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-07-12 21:13:09

Better job / better pay — where is the downside?

I will say one thing about Napolitano: During her tenure at Homeland Security, there has been a palpable improvement in TSA effectiveness at the airports through which I travel on a fairly regular basis. To the extent she had anything to do with this, I applaud her success. It is very hard to change federal government culture for the better, and when it happens on an agency-wide basis, it most likely reflects a top-down commitment from organizational leadership.

Comment by (Neo-) Jetfixr
2013-07-12 13:19:44

The medico/insurance/pharma industrial complex must die, before they kill the rest of the country.

Rolled my ankle on the ramp in mid-May. Sore, but I could walk on it, so so what. Rolled it again a couple of weeks later-hard. Real sore/swollen. I could stand/walk on it without too much pain, but If I put pressure on it from the side (like when you rolled onto it while sleeping), it hurt like hell.

Didn’t get too much sleep. Went to the E.R., because the Minor-Med center wouldn’t see me. Slow day at the E.R., got right in. In there about 20 minutes, one x-ray (to check for broken bones). Kicked me out the door with painkillers, and instructions to ice it until the swelling went down.

Total MSRP? $2500 plus…..$200 for the doctor (okay with that, sorta), $2400 for the hospital, including charges for “application of splint”. Didn’t get a splint….unless that is a euphemism for something else. My state-of-the art insurance plan covered about half the bill.

I’m a contrarian……I’m shooting for the massive stroke/heart attack by 60, before the Medical Mafia gets their hooks in me.

Hell, I may even buy an overpriced house, so I can shield income, and make two-nana and Smithers subsidize my Medicare bill…. I’ll send them a copy of the statements.

Comment by Neuromance
2013-07-12 13:40:08

1) Get an ankle brace/support. Google Image Search will give you some ideas.

2) Don’t make them (big pharma/insurance/medicine) incite you to do anything stupid.

3) Look for ways to win.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-07-12 15:06:13

Hey Liberace…… Where you gigging this weekend? I have a request for you. Can you play this on your harpsichord?


Comment by Lion
2013-07-12 17:36:08

The slowest Zebra. It’s what’s for dinner.

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