Thursday, September 25, 2008

Random Stuff

  • I'm friends with Pat Terry on facebook... I remember seeing him in the 1980's. I'm getting a kick out of it.
  • I think Pat Terry needs a Wikipedia page. I'll work on it in a while.
  • I'm watching the news about the economy. It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion.
  • I have a very strong urge to cash out my portfolio. It's really all that I have for retirement at this time because I choose to not buy into Social Security. I know it's the wrong thing to do that I need to be conservative with it -- that I haven't lost any money until I cash out. But I still have the urge to get cash or gold and put it in my mattress -- or in a coffee can in the backyard.
  • If you look at this situation in a very simplified manner, the problem is bad mortgages. People getting mortgages when they really shouldn't have gotten mortgages. There is a statistic in the paper today that of the millions of current mortgages, 10 percent are in foreclosure. That is a lot of people and a lot of homes. Why did they get these mortgages? Because the government mandated it. This was disaster in the making from the get-go.
  • Some would claim then, that because the government caused the problem (partially, mostly?) then the government should fix it. The proposal is that the government purchase all that bad paper. Seems to make sense, doesn't it?
  • But there is always the butterfly effect. How much worse is this system going to get if we continue to mess with it without understanding the eventual outcome?
  • The housing industry is bad in Georgia because of more than this current situation. It looks as if it started with the Fleet Financial Fiasco in 1992. The overbuilding of the Atlanta area, the foreclosure that have been occurring for more than a decade, the drought -- who knows all the variables involved. Is the government messing with this really going to help in the long run?
  • Yes, it will help in the short term. If the government takes over all that bad paper, then we won't have (simultaneously) thousands of homeless people and thousands of empty houses.
  • And there is a part of me who really believes this is all powered by greed -- the multi-millionaires wanting to be bigger multi-millionaires. For instance, the dude at WaMu made $20 million in one year. You read that right -- $20 million in one year. I can't help but think that amount of money could purchase outright around 200 $100 K houses. That could be up to 800 people with a paid for house and not on the streets. I can't help but think of this as sin. If he works a normal 20 years, he alone could take care of 16,000 people. And that's just one of these dudes.
  • Now I do believe in personal liberties. I believe in a free market. I don't believe in typical socialism. I wonder about giving people housing without a little sweat equity. I don't like the entitlement thing. But the amount of money these "fat cats" make is obscene.
  • I don't think we should "take it away" from them. But why do they need that much money? Many multi-multi-millionaires have given away millions of dollars. It's a blessing to give and to give generously, especially when we give out of the love of God.
  • How to make this right? I don't know. I worry a little about my investments -- but I know I have a roof over my head and a good job -- and my husband has a very good job. I am not lacking for anything. How would I feel if I were being kicked out onto the streets? I don't know. I know I would be scared. I know I would want help.
  • God help us all!

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