Saturday, March 26, 2005

The NYT published an article yesterday, Trading Places: Real Estate instead of Dot-Coms, that affirms what my wife and I, and also my brother and father, have been talking about for a while now. But I'll take it a step further than the measured tones of the author: this baby's gonna burst!

For about a year and a half, we were involved in a situation where we felt like the people buying the house we're renting were speculating. They kept sending messages, along with the broker who sealed the deal, that the owners were going to move in. But somehow we had gotten wind that it was a 1031, exchange of property, so we read the rules and knew the owners weren't going to sell their house in Hercules to move into Oakland. So we stayed put and then they tried all kinds of other loopholes to try and circumvent the Rent Control rules. Long story short, we stayed, fought them in the Rent board, won, of sorts. At least, their exorbitant rent increase did not go through...though the rent board met them halfway. Meanwhile, the lady upstairs moved out in November and they had not found a renter for the place until now.

The loophole they claimed in the beginning was "debt service costs." We also found out they'd had a bankruptcy. Now, I don't know about you, but buying a home in Northern California and then claiming debt service cost after a bankruptcy sounds like speculation to me. As the article states, in San Jose, the cost of a home is 25 percent more than what it would cost to rent it in a year.If I'm reading right...

So...we shall see.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Rats:

Crude Oil prices spiking suddenly, as final vote approaches for ANWR. I smell a rat. It's not as if global temperatures have spiked in China and the US in the past month. It's still winter in many places, folks. Oh, and what of Ted Stevens saying he has been clinically depressed because we're not drilling there? Pathetic.

The Roman Catholic Church putting in its two cents about Schiavo: to the effect of "no human being has the right to decide whether or not one lives or dies." Huh? Then why was she hooked up to a feeding tube in the first place? That's the logic of their statement.

Privatization of Social Security, and how it would increase the deficit and National Debt. Yet another example of the GOP long term strategy: starve the Treasury now to force the next generation's hand in rolling back the New Deal...and place the economic power into fewer and fewer hands.

The bill restricting Chapter 7 Bankruptcies. Mean what you say by restricting Corporations to do the same.

Mike Tice scalping tickets. I've been saying for years that this man is a dumbass. But maybe it should be good news for Packer fans.

Raves:

Trumer Pils. Best Pilsener I've had, and the best new beer in a good long while.

UW Milwaukee and UW Madison in the Sweet 16.

Brett Favre returns for at least another year. Good for the NFL, bad for the Vikings, Bears and Lions.

Poll taken stating that 70% of Americans disagree that Congress and the President have any business intervening in the Schiavo case.

Polls showing that the majority of Americans are against the President's plans to privatize Social Security.

Howard Dean as DNC chair. This bodes well for the Party in the future. He too has read Lakoff's "Don't Think of an Elephant," as of now the best roadmap Dems have for the near term.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

I'm starting to think the blog phenomenon could end up being something featured on VH1's "I love the 00's." Remember 2004, when people were blogging? Maybe it's me.