By someone else
follow someone else
2008 Feb 28, 1:22am
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The NY Times illustrated nicely that most people are against paying their neighbor's mortgage:
But readers arenâ€™t biting. More than 400 vehement reader comments on the Timesâ€™ site ran 20-to-1 against any taxpayer rescue - with fairness and basic economics the main objections
But we are not unified or effective in our protests. Just disgruntled savers bleating in the wilderness while our savings are forcibly transferred to those who did not save, and representative democracy keeps electing representatives of the banks. What would really work?
One reader suggestion is an online petition that all the housing blogs could post. It also might be time to actually hit the streets with real signs and pithy slogans. I could do the SF financial district at lunch some day.
Then there are boycotts, but what are we going to boycott? We're already boycotting bad lending and high prices.
Could we create an effective and public way to track politician sell-outs to the REIC?
Is it time for direct democracy, the ability of the people themselves to make the laws?
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The tyranny of the majority?
I think the bailouts are mainly targeted towards banks, which is fine for me.
I agree the bailouts are mainly targeted at banks, and it pisses me the f@ck off.
How to stop corruption, moneyed interests and influence peddling's power over government? If you can find a practical solution to that, please nominate yourself for a Nobel Prize in Economics.
There are a few things we might try *short* of outright revolution, like 100% publicly financed elections. But honestly, sometimes you just gotta hit the *reset* button on government to get any real "reforms" through.
Here's the bailout proposal with the most chuzpah:
"Give a $10K tax credit to those purchasing new homes, or we withold our campaign contributions" - home builders lobby.
The best way to organized a protest would be to piggy-back on an existing protest. I'm thinking set up picket lines across major streets in SF during those "critical mass" protests. Can you imagine the press coverage of the altercations breaking out between the left-wing bicycle nuts and the anti-mortgage-bailout guys?
"Could we create an effective and public way to track politician sell-outs to the REIC?"
The "Housing Bubble Hall of Shame" seems to be doing that quite effectively. They name names, give a quick profile and break down how that individual unfairly benefited from the HB. Dates, quotes and dollars extracted.
Additionally we can develop a forum based on a consenus of bubble bloggers as to the candidates and bills we DO (or do *not!) endorse! It's great that even lowly Portland has a BB and I love following the local chatter but I've always envisioned that we could somehow "marry" the local blogs into a force to be reckoned with!
Instead of "Ben & Jerry's" we could have "Ben & Patrick's" (along w/ CR, MISH and others) and say... THIS is what we stand for! THIS is what we want!
"More than 400 vehement reader comments on the Timesâ€™ site ran 20-to-1 against any taxpayer rescue - with fairness and basic economics the main objections"
Why aren't the same kind of numbers against welfare? Isn't a majority of our tax money already spent bailing people out of bad economic situations?
I am against a bailout, but what I don't understand is why people are so up in arms about this, but let welfare slide.
HARM, if banks are not bailed out, a deflationary depression may occur.
Averting a depression is much less costly than saving ourselves from one.
I am against a bailout, but what I donâ€™t understand is why people are so up in arms about this, but let welfare slide.
I am vehemently against welfare.
I know you are Peter P, but you're the one of the few people I ever hear actively speak out against it. There certainly is not a 20 to 1 ratio disapproving it... especially in SF.
> The best way to organized a protest would be to
> piggy-back on an existing protest. Iâ€™m thinking set
> up picket lines across major streets in SF during
> those â€œcritical massâ€ protests. Can you imagine
> the press coverage of the altercations breaking
> out between the left-wing bicycle nuts and the
> anti-mortgage-bailout guys?
The only way to get politicians to do anything is to pay them off (also known is making â€œcampaign contributionsâ€). The people that pay the most get what they want (almost everyone is against the war in Iraq, but the firms that profit from the way give the politicians more than we do)â€¦
In fact, it's quite possible that a higher percentage of people are against a bailout of homeowners and banks than are against the war in Iraq. Note how much that is costing...
Half the money we spent blowing people up in the last 6 years could fix this whole mess.
While neither concept is one I feel should be supported, I find it a sad state of this country that more people would rather spend their money to blow someone up than to help their neighbor.
Why so quick to throw your arms in the air in disgust? I think the BB community has been highly effective in raising awareness that there are those among us unwilling to take this lying down.
Besides, I'm starting to see that we may have reached a saturation point for those seeking influence. (Just for effect) when NASCAR was struggling they'd take ANYONE as a sponsor. Now alcohol and tobacco have been taken off the track. Who needs the negative press?
I happen to believe the builders are peeing in the wind on this one.
That is just being human.
Thanks for the link. I think Len Burman of the Tax Policy Center said it best when he noted that policy is ALREADY biased towards housing!
> There certainly is not a 20 to 1 ratio
> disapproving welfareâ€¦ especially in SF.
It depends on how you ask the questionâ€¦
If I ask â€œDo you think that we should allow able bodied people to sit around living rent free doing nothing other than buying liquor and drugs with the money and food stamps we give them?â€
You will probably get 20 to 1 saying no (even in SF).
If I ask â€œDo you think we should have a system in place to help people down on their luck to they have food to feed their children and a place to stay while they get things together?â€
You will probably get 20 to 1 saying yes (even in a GOP County in TX).
In reality most of the people on welfare are horrible drug addicted people that breed more welfare recipients when they are not on drugs or shooting each other.
Since Welfare is a racket where people make Billions of dollars a year (and pay of the politicians in both cash and votes) we will probably just see the number of people on welfare increase.
P.S. I just re-read one of my favorite short books on line â€œWar is a Racketâ€:
I guess builders are longing for the good old days of multiple bids, breaking buyer's agreements and employing illegals at everyone else's expense?
And why is "deflation" such a bad thing, when it raises, not lowers the purchasing power of my cash? As Randy H pointed out on the last thread, a "Depression" is primarily a political --not economic-- term for a deflationary recession. We're not going to avoid job losses in this recession --especially in housing, finance and retail-- so why does this unavoidable and necessary recession "have" to be an inflationary one*?
(*Note: I already know the answer to this question, but I'm rhetorically asking it anyway.)
And why is â€œdeflationâ€ such a bad thing, when it raises, not lowers the purchasing power of my cash?
Fine. When it comes, just don't hope for another FDR to confiscate gold and create the next Mega Welfare Deal.
A recession is unavoidable, but a depression can be, and should be, averted.
Public spending on Corporate and Bankster welfare in its many forms, including direct subsidies (Medicare, prescription drugs, oil, gas, corn ethanol, sugar, milk, military boondoggles, bridges to nowhere, etc.), "special" industry-targeted tax breaks (REIC), and taxpayer risk underwriting (GSEs, FHA, HUD, Sallie Mae, etc.), so far outweighs "welfare" spending on individuals & families that it's not even a close race.
Why bother fighting against what the powers want to do?
Just ride along and profit from it, get into commodities, let them trash the dollar and bail everyone out. Because if they are going through with such a large scale bailout, we will be seeing $500 oil and $10,000 gold, and I won't mind that.
In fact, this is the best ending. Because when we get to $500 oil, housing value is bound to crash hard. Salary growth always lags that of the necessity commodities, so if you have to allocate 1/2 of your income to food due to $500 oil, you will have no money left for mortgage. One can keep renting, or double up on space, or even move in with parents, but one HAS TO EAT, HAS TO DRIVE TO WORK.
Then all the bears on the site can easily turn around and buy a house with cash, oh, I mean, merely a few barrels of oil or a few ounces of gold.
Just ride along and profit from it, get into commodities, let them trash the dollar and bail everyone out. Because if they are going through with such a large scale bailout, we will be seeing $500 oil and $10,000 gold, and I wonâ€™t mind that.
Exactly. Gold is making another record high today.
I don't want to see unemployment hit 35% either (though according to HelloKitty, it already has ;-) ), but I'm sick and tired of this "inflate or die" mentality that has gripped the PTB. Our Dear Leaders seem to think a little deflation, coupled with some fiscal responsibility would be this huge CALAMITY we must *avoid at all costs*. Ridiculous.
Oh, and welcome back, Randy H. I am volunteering my place for the next blog event, if the East Bay isn't too far for most people.
Our Dear Leaders seem to think a little deflation, coupled with some fiscal responsibility would be this huge CALAMITY we must *avoid at all costs*.
I am pretty sure they cannot stop the decline of real asset prices. However, I believe they are working to ensure the stability of the financial system, which is essential to even the most bearish bear.
I say F**k our current "financial system", which primarily exists to serve the top 2% at the expense of practically everyone else. It's not the least bit "essential" to me. If we had to go back to a gold & barter-based economy for a while (until a better financial system gets built), that'd be fine by me. People with real skills --who know how to actually make and fix things-- would be in high demand. People who only know how to create "innovative" debt products, peddle influence, shuffle paper, and transfer wealth from other people to themselves would be screwed.
Works for me.
Well said HARM.
I wish it would turn out like that. But in reality, the mobs of people that don't have any real skills will just end up rioting and resorting to violence.
True. There's that old saw again: "If you're going to do something stupid, do it with large numbers of other people." Everything counts in large amounts*.
(*Apologies to Depeche Mode)
Really THAT is what concerns me if the sh%t really goes down. A reckoning of sorts is sorely needed, and in many ways could be a good thing. But the paper peddlers would not sit idly by in a new world I fear. The same angst and greed that got us here in the first place would get funneled into some other evil endeavor.
My concern comes with the sheer numbers of people that appear to be of that vein. The mob mentality can be a scary thing.
With that said, it might be better to avoid such a reckoning, and let it happen naturally as the Boomers retire.
I would like to keep our current financial system, thank you; although, I would not be against siccing some regulators on the banksters.
I noted that the newscasters, when talking about the Ohio debate, mentioned that the housing crisis was not talked about by either candidate. Maybe some progress is being made.
Great quote over at CR, apropos to our "financial system" discussion:
Tom Stone writes:
"Never Before Have so Few Lost so Much For So Many."
Several Nov 08 CME San Francisco Housing Futures traded hands a couple of days ago at 166.00. As of Dec. 07 the SF Index stood at 189.23. By my calculations this is predicting a mindbending 1.11% decrease per month! Try yelling that at an open house. I suppose a creative agent could use this figure to "unstick" a relucatant seller.
Can you imagine the press coverage of the altercations breaking out between the left-wing bicycle nuts and the anti-mortgage-bailout guys?
Wait, what side would I be on? I'm both: a left-wing bicycle nut and an anti-mortgage bailout guy!
You could argue with yourself, I suppose.
I thought when I wrote it of that scene in Life of Brian where the two direct-action groups slugged it out over who would get to kidnap Pilate's wife.
"We get to tie up SF traffic!"
"No, we thought of it first!" :)
I am against physical protects because they are economically disruptive.
We should "protest" by investing in commodities.
Not investment advice.
February 28th, 2008 at 1:18 pm
"Can you imagine the press coverage of the altercations breaking out between the left-wing bicycle nuts and the anti-mortgage-bailout guys?
Wait, what side would I be on? Iâ€™m both: a left-wing bicycle nut and an anti-mortgage bailout guy!"
Then just start randomly punching whoever is closest to you.
"go back to a gold & barter-based system"
I keep telling you HARM, m-o--v-e... to Oregon! :)
Why I'm proud to say it's never been out of fashion here?
I DO share your frustration. Everyone on my end of the industry is as fed-up and then some. Virtually every research firm on the street (along with the mutual fund co's) were strongly advocating muni bonds for '08. With the implosion at the insurers, people that followed that advice are already down 15-20%, and we've only started the year!
This could be the last straw for a lot of guys in the bank/wire-house distribution channel. I won't say I'm *not down b/c I'm such a "visionary" or any think of the like. (I just refuse to buy muni's!) Yet I feel for the rep's and their clients that did.
The real problem is that ETF's are making advances on at least a weekly basis and muni's.... OTOH, haven't changed since the Civil War. Good luck w/ that guys!
I'm thinking Sweden looks like a nice place. I'm watching a show about it. They were showing Volvo crash tests and I got the impression that they genuinely care about safety. An American car company has to have standards forced upon it. I'm starting to think that I really don't like this country.
They haven't had a war in 200 years.
Sweden is indeed a nice place. Volvo saved my life.
Volvo is now owned by Ford
My last Volvo was pre-Ford.
It is sad that cars are made so light nowadays. I want a non-luxury 2-ton RWD sedan and there are not that many on the market. :(
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