Discussion:
More on the alleged housing bubble, on the heels of the Greenspan comments
(too old to reply)
Z
2005-08-27 15:29:02 UTC
Permalink
Kind of long but very interesting. It contains some interesting facts
about human psychology and how it relates to forecasting. It's been
edited to remove where the author belabors a point or strays.


...
The Problem With Forecasting

Let's start with forecasting. Every few weeks I get a wonderful letter
from good friend James Montier, who is the global equity strategist of
Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein. James is an expert on behavioral
psychology and investing. This week's letter is lamenting the rather
poor track record of forecasting by economists and analysts.

Let me give you a summary of the paper and a few of his graphs.

"Both an enormous amount of evidence and anecdotal experience suggests
that people are very bad at forecasting. This is often because we all
tend to be massively overconfident. This begs two questions, firstly why
do we persist in forecasting despite the appalling track record? And,
more importantly, why do investors put forecasts at the heart of the
investment process?

...

o Economists, strategists and analysts are all guilty. In general,
forecasts seem to be a lagged function of actual outcomes - adaptive
expectations dominate forecasts.

o "The two most common biases are over-optimism and overconfidence.
Overconfidence refers to a situation whereby people are surprised more
often than they expect to be. Effectively people are generally much too
sure about their ability to predict. This tendency is particularly
pronounced amongst experts. That is to say, experts are more
overconfident than lay people. This is consistent with the illusion of
knowledge driving overconfidence.

o "Several studies confirm professional investors to be particularly
overconfident. For instance, one recent study found that 68% of analysts
thought they were above average at forecasting earnings! I've found that
75% of fund managers think they are above average at their jobs.

o "Why do we persist in forecasting given such appalling track records?
There are two avenues to explore - simply put, ignorance and arrogance.
Dunning and colleagues have documented that the worst performers are
generally the most overconfident. They argue that such individuals
suffer a double curse of being unskilled and unaware of it. Dunning et
al argue that the skills needed to produce correct responses are
virtually identical to those needed to self-evaluate the potential
accuracy of responses. Hence the problem.

He gives us a number of charts showing the relationship between
forecasts and what actually happened. Let's look at two of them. What I
particularly want you to focus on is how the forecasts lag reality.

_Essentially,_we_clearly_take_the_current_trends_and_project_them_into_the_future_.

...

The Nobel Prize in economics in 2002 went to a psychologist, Dr. Daniel
Kahneman, who helped pioneer the field of behavioral finance. If I can
crudely summarize his brilliant work, he basically shows that investors
are irrational. But what gets him a Nobel is he shows that we are
predictably irrational. We continue to make the same mistakes over and over.

What makes for a bubble? Why do things get so out of hand? One of the
reasons is simply human behavioral psychology. The longer a trend is in
place the more confident we are in our belief that it will continue.
Especially if we are participating in the trend to our benefit, we find
all sorts of reasons that reinforce our belief that the trend will continue.

Gary North writes in today's Reality Check: "But is it a mania? This
week, I spoke with a friend who bought a 2,000 square foot house in
Orange County, California, in 1999. He paid $235,000. Two years later,
he sold it and moved out of state. He got $350,000 for it. His son, who
remained in California but did not buy a home, tells him that it just
sold for $800,000."

Let's break that down. A 30 year loan at today's jumbo rate of 5.63%
will give you payments of $4,607.78 a month. You can count on taxes,
insurance and other costs to be another $2,000. That's $80,000 a year
before you pay electricity, water, etc. or any maintenance. If your
total tax rate in California is 40%, that means you have to earn around
$10,000 a month or so (even after the mortgage interest break) just to
make you house payment.

Using a rule of thumb that says you should not buy a house with payments
that are more than 1/4 your after tax income, that means over $500,000
per year! Of course, many people are paying twice that percentage (or
more!) in housing costs in order to be able to buy a home.

(As an aside, you can buy a very nice 2,000 square feet home in Texas or
almost anywhere in middle America for $150,000. You can buy one with
some character in a very upscale community (if you can find one that
small) in the Dallas area for $250,000.)

Put simply, there are many areas of the country where even above average
income earners can simply not afford to own a home. They are being
forced to move further and further away from where their jobs are, which
is starting to really hurt a close to $3 gas in California Who is buying
these homes? And more importantly, how are they doing it?

...

Writing machine Robert Kiyosaki, author of the "Rich Dad/Poor Dad"
series of books recently wrote (courtesy of Gary North):

Nothing Down, Interest Only

"On Friday, June 23rd 2005, I was on Your World with Neil Cavuto on the
Fox Network. He asked me what I recommended when it came to investing in
real estate. I replied, 'If you're new to real estate investing, this is
not the time to get into the game.' Unfortunately, many people are in
the market late and not only have paid too much for their homes, they
are over-leveraged. (quoting from an article in The Economist) he went
on to say, '42% of all first time buyers and 25% of all buyers made no
down-payment on their home purchase last year.' That is what I call
over-leveraged. They bought late in the cycle, probably paid too much,
and have signed their lives away on the dotted line. I am concerned for
these people."

I read elsewhere that in some markets as high as 40% of all loans are
interest only. So we have a significant number of people who have paid
top of the market prices, have no equity in their homes and are not
doing anything to pay down the mortgage. They are betting the trend will
continue. Even though they cannot really afford the home, they believe
they will be able to sell it later for a nice profit and help them buy a
home somewhere else they can afford.

These homebuyers are making the same mistake as professional stock
analysts and economists: they are projecting recent past performance
well into the future. It is sadly part of the human condition.

One of my favorite analysts is John Bartlett, of the National Center for
Policy Analysis. He suggests that US homeowners are highly leveraged and
therefore are more vulnerable to a housing price decline. Some of the
points from his essay are sobering:

In the last four years, homeowners have taken $559 billion in equity out
of their homes. The Federal Reserve says that 16% of that money was
simply consumed (short term non-capital purchases). Cash-out
refinancings have risen to 18.1% of all refinancings, up from 7.2% in 2003.

According to the Federal Reserve, home equity has fallen to 56.3% of
real estate, down from 75% a generation ago. More and more homeowners
are buying and refinancing with unconventional loans (such as
adjustable-rate and interest-only mortgages) rather than traditional
fixed mortgages. Such loans have lower initial payments but will rise
automatically when interest rates go higher. The Federal Reserve says
that 47% of all residential mortgages by dollar volume are now
non-traditional.

...

The inventory of homes in 2002 was 2,108,000 and sales were 5,631,000.
Back then that was a 4.7 month supply. But today we find an inventory of
2,751,000, but because we are buying at such a hot pace, the monthly
supply is still calculated to be almost the same.
(http://www.realtor.org/Research.nsf/files/REL0507EHS.pdf/$FILE/REL0507EHS.pdf)

If sales really start to slow down, then that inventory could rise very
dramatically. If a slowdown in the economy caused home sales to drop to
the level of 2002, which was not a bad year for home sales, inventory
could easily rise to 6 months or more very quickly.

...

Who will get hit first? Speculators in housing markets that have
borrowed with no (or little) money down at short term interest only
rates. Look around at your home town. If there are a large percentage of
homes being bought as "investment" property which could not be rented
out on a positive cash flow basis, you are probably in a bubble. You
should carefully weigh your options.

Let me speculate, despite the fact that the first part of this letter
was about the uselessness of forecasts and speculation. I think the Fed
is going to increase rates until the rampant speculation (no pun
intended) in the housing market goes away. They are going to raise rates
until housing slows down. Of course, since 40% of new jobs in the last 4
years have come from the new housing sector, and since a great deal of
the increase in new consumer spending has come from cash out financing,
this is likely to slow the economy as well. They are prepared for that.

When the housing bubble starts to deflate, when the speculators have
been put away, when the economy starts to slow and roll over into
recession, they will once again lower rates, slowly providing a prop to
the real housing market that 90% of the country participates in. That
$800,000 home in Orange County? It is going to be along time before that
house will sell at that price again once the Fed is finished. But most
of us will do just fine. And maybe we get to re-finance our homes at an
even lower rate.

What should you do if you are in a bubble area? Think about how much
equity you could get for your home today. How much income will that
money generate in a bond or CD? Look around at your rental market. If
you can rent a comparable home to what you have today for a good deal
less than what you are paying plus the income you will get from your
equity, then consider selling. My bet is you will get to buy another
property back in your area at a much lower price in a few years.

All housing bubbles have this in common. At first, people refuse to sell
at a loss (another common psychological trait). It takes a while, but as
banks start to repossess properties in your area, they will put them on
the market. Prices start to drop. Then the psychology changes. The same
human beings that thought that houses could only go up now think they
can only go down. They start waiting. Prices go lower. Inventories build.

The Fed starts lowering rates and you will get a chance to buy a home at
a lower price at interest rates lower than they are today.

By the way, I am not against buying investment real estate if you can
find properties that can offer positive cash flow. Lots of people have
made solid fortunes doing that. But I think in the coming
slowdown/recession you are going to have better opportunities to buy
investment real estate.

You have been warned.

Final thoughts: the housing bubble can go on longer than one might
think,and the Fed can raise rates more than anyone now suggest. It is
going to be a very interesting ride. Strap yourself into your seats. But
as I will re-visit in a few weeks, I still think we are in a Muddle
Through Decade.

...
Owen Hartnett
2005-08-27 16:30:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Z
Nothing Down, Interest Only
"On Friday, June 23rd 2005, I was on Your World with Neil Cavuto on the
Fox Network. He asked me what I recommended when it came to investing in
real estate. I replied, 'If you're new to real estate investing, this is
not the time to get into the game.' Unfortunately, many people are in
the market late and not only have paid too much for their homes, they
are over-leveraged. (quoting from an article in The Economist) he went
on to say, '42% of all first time buyers and 25% of all buyers made no
down-payment on their home purchase last year.' That is what I call
over-leveraged. They bought late in the cycle, probably paid too much,
and have signed their lives away on the dotted line. I am concerned for
these people."
I read elsewhere that in some markets as high as 40% of all loans are
interest only. So we have a significant number of people who have paid
top of the market prices, have no equity in their homes and are not
doing anything to pay down the mortgage. They are betting the trend will
continue. Even though they cannot really afford the home, they believe
they will be able to sell it later for a nice profit and help them buy a
home somewhere else they can afford.
I agree that this is a troublesome area, and has the possibility of
helping to start a downward turn in the market if it gets too popular.
This is the bank's fault for lending out money with no equity or down
payment required.
Post by Z
In the last four years, homeowners have taken $559 billion in equity out
of their homes. The Federal Reserve says that 16% of that money was
simply consumed (short term non-capital purchases). Cash-out
refinancings have risen to 18.1% of all refinancings, up from 7.2% in 2003.
According to the Federal Reserve, home equity has fallen to 56.3% of
real estate, down from 75% a generation ago. More and more homeowners
are buying and refinancing with unconventional loans (such as
adjustable-rate and interest-only mortgages) rather than traditional
fixed mortgages.
I don't believe this, at least not around here. Fixed rate is cheap
enough that most buyers will opt for that.
Post by Z
Such loans have lower initial payments but will rise
automatically when interest rates go higher. The Federal Reserve says
that 47% of all residential mortgages by dollar volume are now
non-traditional.
By dollar value? So of course all the million dollar and up homes are
going to have non-traditional mortgages, but that doesn't mean 47% of
all mortgages, which would have actually been an useful statistic.
Post by Z
...
The inventory of homes in 2002 was 2,108,000 and sales were 5,631,000.
Back then that was a 4.7 month supply. But today we find an inventory of
2,751,000, but because we are buying at such a hot pace, the monthly
supply is still calculated to be almost the same.
(http://www.realtor.org/Research.nsf/files/REL0507EHS.pdf/$FILE/REL0507EHS.pdf)
If sales really start to slow down, then that inventory could rise very
dramatically. If a slowdown in the economy caused home sales to drop to
the level of 2002, which was not a bad year for home sales, inventory
could easily rise to 6 months or more very quickly.
Six months is about the normal span. So the effect of the "bubble"
bursting is to restore us to a slightly longer on the market time?
Post by Z
...
Who will get hit first? Speculators in housing markets that have
borrowed with no (or little) money down at short term interest only
rates.
As they should get hit first. So should the banks that make these
loans.
Post by Z
Look around at your home town. If there are a large percentage of
homes being bought as "investment" property which could not be rented
out on a positive cash flow basis, you are probably in a bubble. You
should carefully weigh your options.
I'd agree, but it's difficult to determine this.
Post by Z
Let me speculate, despite the fact that the first part of this letter
was about the uselessness of forecasts and speculation. I think the Fed
is going to increase rates until the rampant speculation (no pun
intended) in the housing market goes away. They are going to raise rates
until housing slows down. Of course, since 40% of new jobs in the last 4
years have come from the new housing sector, and since a great deal of
the increase in new consumer spending has come from cash out financing,
this is likely to slow the economy as well. They are prepared for that.
If the Republicans stay in, it will be as he says. If the Democrats
come in and make laws to punish the rich, they could bring in a whole
drastic set of price lowerings, like what happened to the savings and
loan crisis.
Post by Z
When the housing bubble starts to deflate, when the speculators have
been put away, when the economy starts to slow and roll over into
recession, they will once again lower rates, slowly providing a prop to
the real housing market that 90% of the country participates in. That
$800,000 home in Orange County? It is going to be along time before that
house will sell at that price again once the Fed is finished. But most
of us will do just fine. And maybe we get to re-finance our homes at an
even lower rate.
The fed (under the Republicans, anyway) is going to be careful about
how quickly they want rates to rise. Real estate is the only sector in
the market that's performing, and somebody thinks the government should
rein it in? The government should be looking to make other sectors
perform better.
Post by Z
What should you do if you are in a bubble area? Think about how much
equity you could get for your home today. How much income will that
money generate in a bond or CD? Look around at your rental market. If
you can rent a comparable home to what you have today for a good deal
less than what you are paying plus the income you will get from your
equity, then consider selling. My bet is you will get to buy another
property back in your area at a much lower price in a few years.
Nonsense. When was the last time you saw real estate selling for less
than what it was bought for since the 1950's? 1988, maybe, and only in
certain sectors. And that only lasted about a year or two, then real
estate was off to the races again.
Post by Z
All housing bubbles have this in common. At first, people refuse to sell
at a loss (another common psychological trait).
It takes a while, but as
banks start to repossess properties in your area, they will put them on
the market. Prices start to drop. Then the psychology changes. The same
human beings that thought that houses could only go up now think they
can only go down. They start waiting. Prices go lower. Inventories build.
There have been areas, like Texas after the oil boom fell, where the
housing markets did indeed crumble, but things like that are due to
external local influences, not just because the market was "too high."
Post by Z
By the way, I am not against buying investment real estate if you can
find properties that can offer positive cash flow. Lots of people have
made solid fortunes doing that. But I think in the coming
slowdown/recession you are going to have better opportunities to buy
investment real estate.
A good rule of thumb in all real estate is not to buy income property
with negative cash flow, but that's kind of a no-brainer.
Post by Z
You have been warned.
Final thoughts: the housing bubble can go on longer than one might
think,and the Fed can raise rates more than anyone now suggest.
The biggest danger to real estate prices is meddling by the government.
The current administration has shown that it won't do anything drastic,
let's hope the following one follows suit.

-Owen
propp
2005-08-28 06:25:11 UTC
Permalink
<snip>

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20050828/bs_nm/economy_fed_greenspan_dc

Well there you go, Z. If Friday's comments were a concern, Sat's will
shock; a rare momment indeed. Greenspan(uncharacteristically) said
something that won't take 3+ months to decifer. Cancel all plans for
Monday 9am EDST...opening bell, the world ends<S>
Bob F.
2005-08-29 03:36:31 UTC
Permalink
Hi propp
Post by propp
Well there you go, Z. If Friday's comments were a concern, Sat's will
shock; a rare momment indeed. Greenspan(uncharacteristically) said
something that won't take 3+ months to decifer. Cancel all plans for
Monday 9am EDST...opening bell, the world ends<S>
Do we think it is irresponsible for a man in his position to make
statememnts that might affect any part of the economy? If he thinks it,
does he need to say it? From his position, isn't saying it, influencing
it? I'd be happy with someone who predicts less and just reacts well
and timely.

Bob F.
Z
2005-08-29 04:18:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bob F.
Post by propp
Well there you go, Z. If Friday's comments were a concern, Sat's will
shock; a rare momment indeed. Greenspan(uncharacteristically) said
something that won't take 3+ months to decifer. Cancel all plans for
Monday 9am EDST...opening bell, the world ends<S>
Do we think it is irresponsible for a man in his position to make
statememnts that might affect any part of the economy? If he thinks it,
does he need to say it? From his position, isn't saying it, influencing
it? I'd be happy with someone who predicts less and just reacts well
and timely.
Speculation from the economic illuminati is that his recent statements
_are_ a timely reaction.
propp
2005-08-29 06:45:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bob F.
Hi propp
Post by propp
Well there you go, Z. If Friday's comments were a concern, Sat's
will shock; a rare moment indeed. Greenspan(uncharacteristically)
said something that won't take 3+ months to decifer. Cancel all
plans for Monday 9am EDST...opening bell, the world ends<S>
Do we think it is irresponsible for a man in his position to make
statememnts that might affect any part of the economy? If he thinks
it, does he need to say it? From his position, isn't saying it,
influencing it? I'd be happy with someone who predicts less and
just reacts well and timely.
Hi Bob,

Well, normally I'd agree if Greenspan's comments would impact Wall St.
But think about it...will it affect homebuilder stocks? I don't think
so; they're still relatively fairly valued. Reits? Probably not.
Certainly it won't affect full-time speculators..those snatching and
flipping while the going's good...they don't care what AG thinks.
But maybe, just maybe, it might temper those itching to make a bad
decision and get into the 'game' too late, then get caught holding the
bag later on. And maybe it might have the affect to tighten up
creative mortgaging, and subprime lending. Both would be good things.
Thomas Reynolds
2005-08-29 13:56:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bob F.
Hi propp
Post by propp
Well there you go, Z. If Friday's comments were a concern, Sat's will
shock; a rare momment indeed. Greenspan(uncharacteristically) said
something that won't take 3+ months to decifer. Cancel all plans for
Monday 9am EDST...opening bell, the world ends<S>
Do we think it is irresponsible for a man in his position to make
statememnts that might affect any part of the economy? If he thinks it,
does he need to say it? From his position, isn't saying it, influencing
it? I'd be happy with someone who predicts less and just reacts well and
timely.
Bob F.
It is obvious to me the market is getting soft here.
b***@hotmail.com
2005-08-29 15:13:48 UTC
Permalink
Hi Thomas (et al on this subject)
Post by Thomas Reynolds
It is obvious to me the market is getting soft here.
The marketplace - therefore the economy - is affected most by consumer
confidence. If consumers think that the market is getting soft and
behave accordingly, then it will be so. When someone like Greenspan
makes his edict announcements, consumers opinions can easily shift.
Those shifting opinions will affect the economy. I think markets are
better left to their own devices rather than be influenced by
statements from the Fed. If he wants to influence things, the only way
in which he is authorized to do so is by tweaking interest rates.
Tweak or shut up - is my position.

Bob F.
Owen Hartnett
2005-08-29 18:21:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Hi Thomas (et al on this subject)
Post by Thomas Reynolds
It is obvious to me the market is getting soft here.
The marketplace - therefore the economy - is affected most by consumer
confidence. If consumers think that the market is getting soft and
behave accordingly, then it will be so. When someone like Greenspan
makes his edict announcements, consumers opinions can easily shift.
Those shifting opinions will affect the economy. I think markets are
better left to their own devices rather than be influenced by
statements from the Fed. If he wants to influence things, the only way
in which he is authorized to do so is by tweaking interest rates.
Tweak or shut up - is my position.
For a dissenting view, try:

<http://business.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,16849-1752866,00.html>

Apparently, Greenspan is trying to affect the market through verbal
statements, rather than hitting the rates.

-Owen
b***@hotmail.com
2005-08-30 17:09:04 UTC
Permalink
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
<http://business.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,16849-1752866,00.html>
Apparently, Greenspan is trying to affect the market through verbal
statements, rather than hitting the rates.
I'm not so sure there's a dissenting view there. It's just a
comparison with a tactic that was used in the UK. The bigger question
is whether or not you want someone whose opinions can so sway consumer
confidence stating those opinions in an official capacity. What if he
gets a little senile - what if he needs to take medication that makes
him temporarily less than lucid? What if he just turns out to be a
loose cannon - or perhaps alerts special friends about upcomming
statements he intends to make?

Bob F.
Owen Hartnett
2005-08-30 19:09:49 UTC
Permalink
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
<http://business.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,16849-1752866,00.html>
Apparently, Greenspan is trying to affect the market through verbal
statements, rather than hitting the rates.
I'm not so sure there's a dissenting view there. It's just a
comparison with a tactic that was used in the UK. The bigger question
is whether or not you want someone whose opinions can so sway consumer
confidence stating those opinions in an official capacity. What if he
gets a little senile - what if he needs to take medication that makes
him temporarily less than lucid? What if he just turns out to be a
loose cannon - or perhaps alerts special friends about upcomming
statements he intends to make?
What if he gets hit by a truck?

Lots of things people say can sway customer confidence (including idle
chatter about housing bubbles). His just has more sway because he's
Chairman of the Federal Reserve - someone who's supposed to know
something about these things.

-Owen
b***@hotmail.com
2005-08-31 20:13:52 UTC
Permalink
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
Post by b***@hotmail.com
What if he just turns out to be a
loose cannon - or perhaps alerts special friends about upcomming
statements he intends to make?
What if he gets hit by a truck?
Lots of things people say can sway customer confidence (including idle
chatter about housing bubbles). His just has more sway because he's
Chairman of the Federal Reserve - someone who's supposed to know
something about these things.
With his position comes some level of responsibility. Because of his
position, he has the ability to affect and sway consumer confidence.
Does that mean he should? Does it mean that it's okay to do? I
believe not. Just knowing something - or being in a position to know
it, does not give a person in his position the authority to make
statements that will move the economy... especially in a manner that
adversely affects consumer confidence. He's not just another schlep
with an opinion - his opinion will cause the market to turn up or down,
and frankly, he could very well be wrong... another good reason to
stuff a sock in it.

Bob F.
Owen Hartnett
2005-08-31 21:14:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
Post by b***@hotmail.com
What if he just turns out to be a
loose cannon - or perhaps alerts special friends about upcomming
statements he intends to make?
What if he gets hit by a truck?
Lots of things people say can sway customer confidence (including idle
chatter about housing bubbles). His just has more sway because he's
Chairman of the Federal Reserve - someone who's supposed to know
something about these things.
With his position comes some level of responsibility. Because of his
position, he has the ability to affect and sway consumer confidence.
Does that mean he should? Does it mean that it's okay to do? I
believe not. Just knowing something - or being in a position to know
it, does not give a person in his position the authority to make
statements that will move the economy... especially in a manner that
adversely affects consumer confidence. He's not just another schlep
with an opinion - his opinion will cause the market to turn up or down,
and frankly, he could very well be wrong... another good reason to
stuff a sock in it.
But, Bob, he's already doing things that will move the economy, and
they've been doing it since Reagan brought the economy back from Jimmy
Carter. They've been manipulating the interest rates to hone the
economy to be where they want it, and, in a remarkable coincidence in
history, their best interest is also our best interest. Everybody and
every politician benefits from a good economy.

That being said, obviously Greenspan is looking for a smaller tool to
fine tune the economy. He doesn't want to fall on the rates every time
he needs to ramp up or down, instead, with this comment, he wants to
give it just enough push as his say-so provides, without the additional
emphasis of an actual change in rates.

By changing rates, he feels he's making a much stronger statement.
Here, he can make a weaker statement, and, still, hopefully affect the
market in a beneficial way.

-Owen
Bob F.
2005-09-01 02:13:20 UTC
Permalink
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
But, Bob, he's already doing things that will move the economy, and
they've been doing it since Reagan brought the economy back from Jimmy
Carter. They've been manipulating the interest rates to hone the
economy to be where they want it, and, in a remarkable coincidence in
history, their best interest is also our best interest. Everybody and
every politician benefits from a good economy.
But Owen... he gets PAID to maneuver interest rates... I have zero
contention with that. It's his rhetoric associated with his crystal
ball that I take exception to.
Post by Owen Hartnett
That being said, obviously Greenspan is looking for a smaller tool to
fine tune the economy. He doesn't want to fall on the rates every time
he needs to ramp up or down, instead, with this comment, he wants to
give it just enough push as his say-so provides, without the additional
emphasis of an actual change in rates.
As far as I'm concerned, that's out of scope and not in his job
description. The future is a delicately uncertain place... if he could
predict it, he wouldn't need to work. He gets paid to react to leading
and lagging economic indicators, not predict bubbles breaking - real
estate or otherwise.
Post by Owen Hartnett
By changing rates, he feels he's making a much stronger statement.
Here, he can make a weaker statement, and, still, hopefully affect the
market in a beneficial way.
I can see you like the idea... that's your position. I'm not going to
be able to be on your team here... that kind of behavior - to me -
provides, for me at least, the perception of impropriety. I can think
of a number of ways he can personally benefit from such behavior. And
like I said - what if he's wrong.

Bob F.
Owen Hartnett
2005-09-01 02:48:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
But, Bob, he's already doing things that will move the economy, and
they've been doing it since Reagan brought the economy back from Jimmy
Carter. They've been manipulating the interest rates to hone the
economy to be where they want it, and, in a remarkable coincidence in
history, their best interest is also our best interest. Everybody and
every politician benefits from a good economy.
But Owen... he gets PAID to maneuver interest rates... I have zero
contention with that. It's his rhetoric associated with his crystal
ball that I take exception to.
So you think he should only be able to use a sledge hammer when a
whisper will do?
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Post by Owen Hartnett
That being said, obviously Greenspan is looking for a smaller tool to
fine tune the economy. He doesn't want to fall on the rates every time
he needs to ramp up or down, instead, with this comment, he wants to
give it just enough push as his say-so provides, without the additional
emphasis of an actual change in rates.
As far as I'm concerned, that's out of scope and not in his job
description. The future is a delicately uncertain place... if he could
predict it, he wouldn't need to work. He gets paid to react to leading
and lagging economic indicators, not predict bubbles breaking - real
estate or otherwise.
What's his job description? He has to make a prediction, and act on
it. He can act on his prediction with a sledge hammer, or maybe just
tap it once with a little ball peen in the right spot. He gets paid to
keep the economy stable and growing, and when he fails to do that is
when I'll lose trust in him. He damn well better be paid for observing
bubbles, because a lot of people lost their shirt on the last one.

You seem to think he's just another gov't employee who punches a clock
and needs to restrict himself to the bureaucracy. No thanks, I want
this guy to be observing and reacting, in whatever way he deems fit.
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Post by Owen Hartnett
By changing rates, he feels he's making a much stronger statement.
Here, he can make a weaker statement, and, still, hopefully affect the
market in a beneficial way.
I can see you like the idea... that's your position. I'm not going to
be able to be on your team here... that kind of behavior - to me -
provides, for me at least, the perception of impropriety. I can think
of a number of ways he can personally benefit from such behavior. And
like I said - what if he's wrong.
If he's wrong, then it's much less of a big deal then if he's gone to
the well on the interest rates once too often. Let's face it, in his
position he can benefit much more lucratively from knowing the interest
rate changes the day before they're announced, never mind trying to
rein in markets going wild with mild rhetoric. He could personally
benefit from so many things that statements about the market seem minor
in comparison.

-Owen

-Owen
Bob F.
2005-09-02 03:38:29 UTC
Permalink
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
So you think he should only be able to use a sledge hammer when a
whisper will do?
You take my comments and make them something they are not. Please
don't. He doesn't have a sledge hammer - he has interest rates that are
his bag of tricks. That's what he's paid to do. We neither pay him to
predict the future, nor use his position to make things happen rather
than react to things happening. You act like he really can predict the
future.
Post by Owen Hartnett
What's his job description? He has to make a prediction, and act on
it.
Not! He has to act on (to be clear: move interest rates or not) the
analyses of the economy using proven leading and lagging indicators.
Otherwise he'd be like a reporter making news rather than reporting it.
Post by Owen Hartnett
when I'll lose trust in him. He damn well better be paid for observing
bubbles, because a lot of people lost their shirt on the last one.
Observing them is one thing - making predictions about them with no
supporting evidence is another.
Post by Owen Hartnett
You seem to think he's just another gov't employee who punches a clock
and needs to restrict himself to the bureaucracy. No thanks, I want
this guy to be observing and reacting, in whatever way he deems fit.
Good for you - not for me. Gov't emplyees with no bounds smacks of
chaos to me. But then - this administration seems to make the bounds up
as they go along.
Post by Owen Hartnett
If he's wrong, then it's much less of a big deal then if he's gone to
the well on the interest rates once too often.
We pay him to know what to do and how to react with interest rates. You
call his public predictions about real estate a whisper - one of the
things he cannot predict about the future is how the masses will react
to what he says. A plausable outcome of his statement would be that
people will rush to sell their houses sooner than later causing a glut
of supply - conversely, people will wait to buy anticipating price
declines which will exascerbate the excess supply. Sound like disaster
to you? Sound like a whisper?
Post by Owen Hartnett
Let's face it, in his
position he can benefit much more lucratively from knowing the interest
rate changes the day before they're announced, never mind trying to
rein in markets going wild with mild rhetoric. He could personally
benefit from so many things that statements about the market seem minor
in comparison.
I'm fairly certain that changes in his and his family's investments that
would directly benefit from changes in interest rates are closely
scrutinized. I'm equally as certain that changes in their investments
in real estate are not.

Bob F.
Owen Hartnett
2005-09-02 19:37:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Hi Owen
Post by Owen Hartnett
So you think he should only be able to use a sledge hammer when a
whisper will do?
You take my comments and make them something they are not. Please
don't. He doesn't have a sledge hammer - he has interest rates that are
his bag of tricks. That's what he's paid to do.
No, he's paid to do more than simply manipulate interest rates. The
economy is his charge, not some bag of tricks. We don't pay him to be
a magician, but to be the keeper of the economy.
Post by b***@hotmail.com
We neither pay him to
predict the future, nor use his position to make things happen rather
than react to things happening. You act like he really can predict the
future.
Yes, we do. We expect him to be on top of things like bubbles, spikes
and depressions. We don't pay him to merely be reactive, that was
Herbert Hoover's plan.

It doesn't matter whether he can predict the future or not. Things he
does do, including his rhetoric, can influence the future, and it's
this influence we pay him for.
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Post by Owen Hartnett
What's his job description? He has to make a prediction, and act on
it.
Not! He has to act on (to be clear: move interest rates or not) the
analyses of the economy using proven leading and lagging indicators.
Otherwise he'd be like a reporter making news rather than reporting it.
He is making news. This government, and no government since Jimmy
Carter, has been content to be a complete laissez-faire government in
regards to the economy. Reagan showed that the right influences can
positively affect the government.
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Post by Owen Hartnett
when I'll lose trust in him. He damn well better be paid for observing
bubbles, because a lot of people lost their shirt on the last one.
Observing them is one thing - making predictions about them with no
supporting evidence is another.
There's lots of evidence that there may be problems in the real estate
sector, particularly in the area of no-equity loans.
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Post by Owen Hartnett
If he's wrong, then it's much less of a big deal then if he's gone to
the well on the interest rates once too often.
We pay him to know what to do and how to react with interest rates. You
call his public predictions about real estate a whisper - one of the
things he cannot predict about the future is how the masses will react
to what he says.
Can he really predict how they'll react to an interest rate change?
Post by b***@hotmail.com
A plausable outcome of his statement would be that
people will rush to sell their houses sooner than later causing a glut
of supply - conversely, people will wait to buy anticipating price
declines which will exascerbate the excess supply. Sound like disaster
to you? Sound like a whisper?
"...but to open his mouth and remove all doubt." What he's done is a
whisper - in fact, since he made the statement and didn't touch the
rate, it's somewhat of a mixed message. People still will invest in
real estate, his comments have been taken as a warning, not a
prediction, which is obviously what he intended. By raising the rates,
the warning becomes the truth, and he removes all doubt.
Post by b***@hotmail.com
Post by Owen Hartnett
Let's face it, in his
position he can benefit much more lucratively from knowing the interest
rate changes the day before they're announced, never mind trying to
rein in markets going wild with mild rhetoric. He could personally
benefit from so many things that statements about the market seem minor
in comparison.
I'm fairly certain that changes in his and his family's investments that
would directly benefit from changes in interest rates are closely
scrutinized. I'm equally as certain that changes in their investments
in real estate are not.
You think Greenspan's making big money flipping houses? In which case,
the statement would hurt him more than help him. There aren't many
people who try to short real estate.

-Owen
Thomas Reynolds
2005-09-02 20:04:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Owen Hartnett
You think Greenspan's making big money flipping houses? In which case,
the statement would hurt him more than help him. There aren't many
people who try to short real estate.
-Owen
I was talking to my bank's VP today while doing some papers with him. I
noted their special rate for 13 month CDs is 4 percent APY, while the prime
is 6.5 and speculated the banks are laying low waiting for the housing
market to burst and the need to foreclose/lose money. He made eye contact
and simply said "You bet, it is crazy now and none of us can understand why
it hasn't blown yet." Anyway, FWIW....
(Suntrust)
Z
2005-09-02 23:16:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Thomas Reynolds
market to burst and the need to foreclose/lose money. He made eye contact
and simply said "You bet, it is crazy now and none of us can understand why
it hasn't blown yet." Anyway, FWIW....
It should be obvious from hundreds of prior posts that I'm not one to
run around yelling "The sky is falling!" but it will be, very soon ...
propp
2005-09-03 05:14:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Thomas Reynolds
Post by Owen Hartnett
You think Greenspan's making big money flipping houses? In which case,
the statement would hurt him more than help him. There aren't many
people who try to short real estate.
-Owen
I was talking to my bank's VP today while doing some papers with
him. I noted their special rate for 13 month CDs is 4 percent APY,
while the prime is 6.5 and speculated the banks are laying low
waiting for the housing market to burst
Wifey recently demanded a 0.5% boost to all CDs at our bank, present
terms and those getting ready to roll. Got it too, even on the
shortest terms. Gotta love those women when they get into their price
comparison/shopping mode<S>
Thomas Reynolds
2005-09-03 05:36:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Thomas Reynolds
Post by Owen Hartnett
You think Greenspan's making big money flipping houses? In which case,
the statement would hurt him more than help him. There aren't many
people who try to short real estate.
-Owen
I was talking to my bank's VP today while doing some papers with him. I
noted their special rate for 13 month CDs is 4 percent APY, while the
prime is 6.5 and speculated the banks are laying low waiting for the
housing market to burst
Wifey recently demanded a 0.5% boost to all CDs at our bank, present terms
and those getting ready to roll. Got it too, even on the shortest terms.
Gotta love those women when they get into their price comparison/shopping
mode<S>
My wife is the same way. I haven't the stomach to even dream of the things
she does like that.
A lot of people would be surprised that you can get another quarter or half
percent on CDs etc. at a lot of banks if you ask AND if they consider you a
preferred customer. I discovered from a branch manager that they have a
second rate schedule for customers in our category BUT you have to ask for
it and the staff is not allowed to suggest it to you. BLAM, wife roots it
out like a truffle pig in 30 seconds. Got additional .25 on the IRA CDs a
few months back when they were transferred.
propp
2005-09-03 09:10:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Thomas Reynolds
Post by propp
Post by Thomas Reynolds
Post by Owen Hartnett
You think Greenspan's making big money flipping houses? In which case,
the statement would hurt him more than help him. There aren't many
people who try to short real estate.
-Owen
I was talking to my bank's VP today while doing some papers with
him. I noted their special rate for 13 month CDs is 4 percent
APY, while the prime is 6.5 and speculated the banks are laying
low waiting for the housing market to burst
Wifey recently demanded a 0.5% boost to all CDs at our bank,
present terms and those getting ready to roll. Got it too, even on
the shortest terms. Gotta love those women when they get into their
price comparison/shopping mode<S>
My wife is the same way. I haven't the stomach to even dream of the
things she does like that.
A lot of people would be surprised that you can get another quarter
or half percent on CDs etc. at a lot of banks if you ask AND if they
consider you a preferred customer. I discovered from a branch
manager that they have a second rate schedule for customers in our
category BUT you have to ask for it and the staff is not allowed to
suggest it to you. BLAM, wife roots it out like a truffle pig in 30
seconds. Got additional .25 on the IRA CDs a few months back when
they were transferred.
Oh yeah, our branch manager is another women. They made it seem as if
it was it was an exchange of recipes or shopping tips..two men never
could have concluded so civilly or so quickly<G> She demanded and
promised to move everything to ING direct online, she conceded. They
were laughing and chit-chatting after.
A
2005-08-31 21:08:08 UTC
Permalink
Not to detract from the news of terrible suffering and death in New
Orleans, Mississippi, and other Gulf coast areas, but... Does anyone have
any thoughts on the possible effects of Hurricane Katrina on nationwide
housing-price trends? I'm no economist, but a disaster of this magnitude
surely will have ripple effects on the national economy and various
markets.

- A.
Z
2005-08-31 23:04:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Not to detract from the news of terrible suffering and death in New
Orleans, Mississippi, and other Gulf coast areas, but... Does anyone have
any thoughts on the possible effects of Hurricane Katrina on nationwide
housing-price trends? I'm no economist, but a disaster of this magnitude
surely will have ripple effects on the national economy and various
markets.
Once the rebuilding starts in LA and the surrounding states, it's gonna
help drive the price of new construction through the roof in the rest of
the country and help inflate the bubble even faster.

Be afraid, be very afraid.
pla
2005-08-31 22:53:33 UTC
Permalink
I'm no economist, but a disaster of this magnitude surely will
have ripple effects on the national economy and various markets.
You bet it will! With some savvy trading today, my portfolio
went up in value by almost 3% in one day! With disasters,
you can almost always short the insurance companies (then,
ironically enough, when you cover, dump the profit into a
long and when the gov't covers their bet, they shoot right
back up).

The NASDAQ as a whole went up by over 1%, a *HUGE* gain when
it has trended rather strongly downward since the beginning
of August (mostly due to the oil companies - Although oil
went down, gasoline went up, and for them, oil counts as
an *expense*, so lower means better).

You ever wonder why stock brokers have a sort of "slimey"
reputation? There you go. Most of the time, they have to
put up with making a tenth of a percent here and there. In
a disaster, a "good" trader can double their money in a day.



- pla, feeling dirty. But then,
does shorting an insurance
company balance its own karma?
Mr Potatohead
2005-09-01 01:04:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Not to detract from the news of terrible suffering and death in New
Orleans, Mississippi, and other Gulf coast areas, but... Does anyone have
any thoughts on the possible effects of Hurricane Katrina on nationwide
housing-price trends? I'm no economist, but a disaster of this magnitude
surely will have ripple effects on the national economy and various
markets.
- A.
Some people might move inland and out of the deep south shoreline areas.
Most will rebuild if they can. The poor have been permanently removed
from New Orleans and it will be rebuilt as a ribald Disneyland with
gambling and other tourist fancies. The city will now be very
well-protected. Las Vegas of the South.

I think reasonable homeowner policies are a thing of the past. I got
canceled last year for being within a half mile of the shore. It would
take a hellova tsunami wave to get to my house but they canceled many in
my area. A timid mutual company, for sure, and I got on board another
easily, but they are really going to be shy after a few more years like
these. Also storm shutters. less glass areas, in other words, more
meddling in what we do that they cover... and of course, less coverage
for us and less exposure for them.

I do not see signs of anything getting better here in the good old for
awhile. I spent a year stationed in the area hit by Katrina in the early
60s. Loved the place, but it was the sleepy south then. Couldn't believe
the growth over the past decades when I went there a few years back.
Even in the 60s we knew the place was on borrowed time. I can't believe
they weren't better prepared for this catastrophe. Look for big
expenditures down there over the next decade. Expect to pay more for
maintaining the status quo.
propp
2005-09-01 06:16:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Not to detract from the news of terrible suffering and death in New
Orleans, Mississippi, and other Gulf coast areas, but... Does anyone have
any thoughts on the possible effects of Hurricane Katrina on
nationwide
housing-price trends? I'm no economist, but a disaster of this magnitude
surely will have ripple effects on the national economy and various
markets.
- A.
Well, the price of construction materials will certainly go up. Expect
more plywood, cement, drywall, etc shortages at HD and Lowes.
Laury
2005-09-01 15:09:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Not to detract from the news of terrible suffering and death in New
Orleans, Mississippi, and other Gulf coast areas, but... Does anyone have
any thoughts on the possible effects of Hurricane Katrina on nationwide
housing-price trends? I'm no economist, but a disaster of this magnitude
surely will have ripple effects on the national economy and various
markets.
It's going to effect the price of everything, because the price of
transportation has gone through the roof. I'm on vacation this
week, but my job deals with pricing, and little birds have told
me I have a monster workload waiting when I return. First to
go up is gas, and produce is always hot on it's heels. Meat
and dairy shortly after, then shelf-stable items. Add to that the
hit we take on heat and it's going to be a lean Christmas at
our house.

But housing in RI... everyone has to live somewhere. Our
population is stable, or job base is stable (thanks to BRAC)
and I fail to see how prices are suddenly going to nosedive,
unless interest rates go through the roof. You're either going
to pay a rent or a mortgage. RI doesn't have a lot of speculators,
and I doubt our second-home market is all that big either. I
don't see Mike's predictions coming true here.

Laury
Z
2005-09-01 15:31:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by Laury
and I fail to see how prices are suddenly going to nosedive,
unless interest rates go through the roof. You're either going
Defaults, foreclosures, overbuilding, people leaving the state, people
taking roommates and housemates ... all those can act to depress housing
prices.
Laury
2005-09-02 02:32:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Z
Post by Laury
and I fail to see how prices are suddenly going to nosedive,
unless interest rates go through the roof. You're either going
Defaults, foreclosures,
some might be possible

overbuilding,

not possible here in the east, where buildable land is
almost impossible to find

people leaving the state, people
Post by Z
taking roommates and housemates
would lessen demand by only the slightest amount

... all those can act to depress housing
Post by Z
prices.
No big bubble burst, perhaps a flattening. Unless the whole
economy does a nosedive, which is looking more and more
possible as I watch our wonderful Prez deal with another
crisis. Granted, this one he did not personally create. How
much is the deficit up to now?? Did you notice how he
sounded like the village idiot in his post-Air Force One
tour of the Katrina damage? And gee, wonder how long
that tour took... 20 minutes for 3 states? Yep, I bet it DOES
look worse from the ground.

It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open
your mouth and remove all doubt. - Mark Twain

Laury
A
2005-09-02 13:54:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Laury
Did you notice how he
sounded like the village idiot in his post-Air Force One
tour of the Katrina damage?
Yep. He also had that deer-in-the-headlights look he gets when
something unscripted and bad happens. Maybe his comlink implant (direct
from Cheney to his brain) was on the fritz.

Did any of you see the CNN interview around 11 pm last night with the
mayor of San Antonio, TX, where they are opening the city's facilities and
schools to refugees from NOLA? The guy was a warmer version of Winsyon
Churchill... he spoke with intelligence, resolve, humanity, and
compassion. He talked about restoring the dignity of the refugees. I need
to see if there's a transcript of his remarks on CNN.com. I was so
impressed. Now THAT is leadership in crisis.

- Anne
A
2005-09-02 14:28:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Did any of you see the CNN interview around 11 pm last night with the
mayor of San Antonio, TX, where they are opening the city's facilities and
schools to refugees from NOLA?
I couldn't find that interview anywhere online, but here are a few
welded-together bits of other interviews with this guy:



Mayor Phil Hardberger predicted the number in San Antonio would range into
"many thousands."

"We intend to welcome these people with open arms and to try to give them
some dignity, which these circumstances have taken away," Hardberger said.


"I would be reluctant to turn anybody away who is hungry and hurt and has
no place to go." Hardberger called on the entire city to 'rise to the
occasion, and welcome our neighbors with open arms.'

"We need to band together to give these people back the dignity that has
been taken away from them. If they had jobs, they don't have jobs any
more. Losing your jobs is a disaster in most families. They have also lost
their homes and their personal possessions and in many cases they only
have the shirts on their backs. It is a cry for compassion and
understanding from one human spirit to another, and we will not fail to
respond the way we would want to be responded to."




- Anne
Tony P.
2005-09-03 00:27:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Post by Laury
Did you notice how he
sounded like the village idiot in his post-Air Force One
tour of the Katrina damage?
Yep. He also had that deer-in-the-headlights look he gets when
something unscripted and bad happens. Maybe his comlink implant (direct
from Cheney to his brain) was on the fritz.
There is fairly widespread conjecture that Cheney has suffered a
debilitating heart attack and is in no condition to either travel nor
coach Bush.
A
2005-09-03 01:28:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tony P.
There is fairly widespread conjecture that Cheney has suffered a
debilitating heart attack and is in no condition to either travel nor
coach Bush.
No kidding! I hadn't heard that. Sheesh. Sounds like gossip, but it
might explain a lot too.

- A.
Z
2005-09-03 01:34:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by A
Post by Tony P.
There is fairly widespread conjecture that Cheney has suffered a
debilitating heart attack and is in no condition to either travel nor
coach Bush.
No kidding! I hadn't heard that. Sheesh. Sounds like gossip, but it
might explain a lot too.
It's only widespread conjecture on the more shrill Bush hating blogs.
Tony P.
2005-09-03 12:28:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Z
Post by A
Post by Tony P.
There is fairly widespread conjecture that Cheney has suffered a
debilitating heart attack and is in no condition to either travel nor
coach Bush.
No kidding! I hadn't heard that. Sheesh. Sounds like gossip, but it
might explain a lot too.
It's only widespread conjecture on the more shrill Bush hating blogs.
Even the Bush supporting blogs are starting to see that it is all coming
apart.

That lock-step unity the Republican party had is gone. And nothing kills
a party like a fractious constituency.
Mr Potatohead
2005-09-03 13:04:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tony P.
That lock-step unity the Republican party had is gone. And nothing kills
a party like a fractious constituency.
Quite! We have seen signs of it, whatever it is, for a decade amongst
the Democrats.
Z
2005-09-03 15:12:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tony P.
Post by Z
Post by A
Post by Tony P.
There is fairly widespread conjecture that Cheney has suffered a
debilitating heart attack and is in no condition to either travel nor
coach Bush.
No kidding! I hadn't heard that. Sheesh. Sounds like gossip, but it
might explain a lot too.
It's only widespread conjecture on the more shrill Bush hating blogs.
Even the Bush supporting blogs are starting to see that it is all coming
apart.
That lock-step unity the Republican party had is gone. And nothing kills
a party like a fractious constituency.
Nice bait and switch, Tony. The issue was Cheney's alleged secret heart
attack.

propp
2005-09-03 05:02:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tony P.
Post by A
Post by Laury
Did you notice how he
sounded like the village idiot in his post-Air Force One
tour of the Katrina damage?
Yep. He also had that deer-in-the-headlights look he gets when
something unscripted and bad happens. Maybe his comlink implant (direct
from Cheney to his brain) was on the fritz.
There is fairly widespread conjecture that Cheney has suffered a
debilitating heart attack and is in no condition to either travel nor
coach Bush.
Cool, maybe he'll croak and Bush can appoint Condi VP :-)
Continue reading on narkive:
Search results for 'More on the alleged housing bubble, on the heels of the Greenspan comments' (newsgroups and mailing lists)
5
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started 2008-05-15 07:24:08 UTC
soc.culture.latin-america
5
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COMING DOWNFALL OF THE UNITED STATES: ‘Has the Battle for America Begun?’ – “What is unique about this analysis is the author’s contention that the U.S. is being used unwittingly by the European-based financial powers for their own purposes. They know that the U.S. economy is bankrupt, because they have made it so through a quarter century of financial manipulations that have destroyed our manufacturing base and left us horrendously in debt. Now they have suckered us into the last thing we need—a major Asian land war that threatens to bring Russia and perhaps China into the fray. But that’s all right, because once we have exhausted ourselves and courted nuclear retaliation, Europe, which is uniting under the European Union, will likely be left standing, as will Israel…”
started 2008-05-15 07:24:08 UTC
soc.culture.china
5
replies
COMING DOWNFALL OF THE UNITED STATES: ‘Has the Battle for America Begun?’ – “What is unique about this analysis is the author’s contention that the U.S. is being used unwittingly by the European-based financial powers for their own purposes. They know that the U.S. economy is bankrupt, because they have made it so through a quarter century of financial manipulations that have destroyed our manufacturing base and left us horrendously in debt. Now they have suckered us into the last thing we need—a major Asian land war that threatens to bring Russia and perhaps China into the fray. But that’s all right, because once we have exhausted ourselves and courted nuclear retaliation, Europe, which is uniting under the European Union, will likely be left standing, as will Israel…”
started 2008-05-15 07:24:08 UTC
soc.culture.japan
128
replies
The Republican Party's racist views are now open for all to see
started 2004-10-18 23:36:39 UTC
mn.politics
5
replies
COMING DOWNFALL OF THE UNITED STATES: ‘Has the Battle for America Begun?’ – “What is unique about this analysis is the author’s contention that the U.S. is being used unwittingly by the European-based financial powers for their own purposes. They know that the U.S. economy is bankrupt, because they have made it so through a quarter century of financial manipulations that have destroyed our manufacturing base and left us horrendously in debt. Now they have suckered us into the last thing we need—a major Asian land war that threatens to bring Russia and perhaps China into the fray. But that’s all right, because once we have exhausted ourselves and courted nuclear retaliation, Europe, which is uniting under the European Union, will likely be left standing, as will Israel…”
started 2008-05-15 07:24:08 UTC
soc.culture.russian
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