An Idea...(Notice: Rant Ahead)

Recently between working on my neighbor's house for money, wading through unemployment proceedings, attempting to refinance, signing up for COBRA, and oh yeah looking for a job, I am noticing a few trends:

  1. Everyone has their own idea of what will get us out of this mess.
  2. No sympathy for where public America is really at right now.
  3. The ridiculousness of the comments I have been hearing on radio and TV.

So 1, all over the radio and TV is a number of people stating that their own idea of what will boost the economy, and the truth of the matter is that they need to take care of their own house, their own job, and their own money. By trusting some other jack@$$ in the first place, buying crap you don't need, and banking on rapid growth or some other prospective investment we have all fallen into a trap. We used 'fake' money, overspent on ridiculous stuff, and now want someone to help the sinking ship we all created. Somewhere in life, things went from buy what you can afford to buy now pay later, even if you can't. Stimulus plan may work, may not, but if we all start coming to the epiphany of what we can really afford then maybe we will stop the scariness of everything. End overbuilding, overspending, and think. In the past two years I bought a new 'used' car and a house. I put down more than 10% on each, purchased something extremely affordable, and they may both be in jeopardy now that I don't have a job. Okay not really, but they could if I am unemployed a year from now. I take that responsibility however, and it is my job to try and take care of things.

2 is the other common theme I hear. Please understand we are past the point of the housing bubble, that was a domino, and now a lot of people, more than what is being reported, have lost their jobs or may end up losing their jobs. Sure idiot bankers should not have sold 0% down loans to risky buyers and likewise buyers should not have thought that they could purchase these homes, blah blah blah, etc. Spending is frozen, lending is frozen, and no body is really producing anything besides gas, food, energy, and natural gas. A quick call to friends from past employers over the past two weeks report 20%-30% work force layoffs at every employer I have ever worked for, ALL OF THEM. To top that off everyone of them is producing at around 10% production of their yearly average. TEN PERCENT!!! Read that as factories, companies, employees, everyone is standing on that cliff looking over the edge. Unless something changes, i.e. lending opens up, people open up their pocketbooks, then bankruptcy and shutdowns at the least are going to begin to occur. It is going to be painful, heck it is painful. Start showing some sympathy for your fellow man, because you may be next one on the chopping block, and hope your neighbor isn't serving crow when you need help with your next meal.

And last but not least number 3. The bits of armor are starting to fall off of everyone, and we are hearing some of the most stupid comments I have ever heard from people getting worried. For example, today on NPR's Talk of the Nation, a gentlemen called in to the station to say that it has been very difficult to get his two VARIABLE RATE HOME LOANS on his current home and his VACATION HOME, and although he has hired someone to help him get them readjusted nothing has occurred. He wanted to know when the government was going to force these banks to do something. All I can say is, where is this guy and how else can someone make money off him. Then about a month ago NPR covered the fact that California may default on their bonds for the first time ever, a consequence was that student loan checks have been late, not that they weren't paid out, just late. NPR of course found some strapping young woman at Berkeley for comment. Her quote you ask? "It's not bad enough that I am a DOUBLE MAJOR with a MINOR, but now I am going have GET A JOB to make my payments." I don't know where to begin, first college is a privilege, second 2 majors and a minor what the heck do you need that much college for, third enjoy your debt for the next 25 years, and lastly YES YOU MAY HAVE TO GET A JOB.

These times are rough, and I am sorry if I am negative. The government is doing some positive things, albeit expensive things, to try and help. I will be one of the people in line for the help, and will remember this if I make it through this intact and reciprocate to someone else in need.

Good luck, evaluate yourself, and SAVE!


Grant said...

Good post, MJ, and I can appreciate the rant.

I do take issue with your comment that lending is frozen; it's not.

Believe it or not, you can go borrow money on just about anything you want right now. But why would you? Where's the incentive to buy anything under downward price pressure?

I deal with several small time bankers and even some bigger branch managers in the oil and gas business. They're dying to lend me money and absurd interest rates.

The fact is, the money is there to be borrowed, but no one is borrowing any.

You also mention that "... the government is doing some positive things"... nay, the government is doing some things they're trying to tell you are positive.


Mike said...

Feel better? I hope so.

MJ @ Dyslexic Research said...

That's what therapists say right get the anger out...so yeah I do feel better.

Atlas@mymoneyshrugged said...

Great Post! I just got turned onto your blog and I am liking it! I can appreciate everything you are saying on this post. Rant on!