La plus ca change.....la plus ca change pas.....
James McMurtry Lyrics
We Can't Make It Here Lyrics
Or spend a buck and buy it here. James could probably use the money.
What has changed in four years? In eight years?
To quote Auric Goldfinger: "Once is an accident; twice is coincidence. Three times is Enemy Action!"
We drove over to Los Banos to look for my Grandpuppy's mom in a Field Trial....and spent a fruitless hour looking for the old Woolgrower's Inn. While prowling through the neighborhoods of old Los Banos....all we saw were hundreds of For Sale-Foreclosure signs on little cottages everywhere.
The difference in Los Banos is that the families that gambled on the American Dream and tried to buy a house with 80% of their income....were still in the houses. There is no one to buy them, and nowhere for the people to go.....so everything stays the same, except the poor new Latino citizens will eventually get fucked somehow.
Will our trillion dollars go to the folks in Los Banos to cut their mortgage payments to.....say 75% of the family's income? I think not. It will just bail out the bank of the bank of the bank.....and some insider guy will get the houses at a fifty cents on the dollar or better.....jack the rents, and put the family's back in the fields where they belong.
I have been an 80% mortgage guy. On paper, I still am. In 1976, my partners and I gave Nader Agha two grand in an alley in Monterey as a down on our house on Flight Road. We didn't tell the bank, and paid on Mike Kucher's mortgage for twenty years. Mike owns Kaseys' and the Chevron in the Village.......and by dummying up, trusting me, and participating in bank fraud....kind of...and gave me and Jane our start in real economic life.
And no one ever lost a nickel....because we all worked our balls off to make the nut. There were five of us....but the nut was $1200 a month. In 1976. I was making five dollars an hour.
Do the math.
Then......The loan that enabled us to buy our house we live in now we got because the loan guy died two hours before closing and everyone just threw up their hands. Charlie Beckermann also helped. At the time I made a great salary from Silver Jones, my wife worked a great job, and I had A Moveable Feast on top of it all......
B of A turned us down for a mortgage that was 60% of the rent we were paying because "based on my income.....I should be living at home with my parents."
My partner Jack Silver told me: "Well, then.....based on my income.....I should be living with you!"
OH! Did I mention? The mortgage broker who found us the dying money guy was the partner of the Christian scumbag who shot himself in the motel room in Fresno last weekend after stealing all my client's spare change.
Tom O'Meara. Look it up....but wipe down your computer with Lysol after you type in his name.
The loan that we took to buy The Store.....against the spurious loan against the spurious loan....was to an outfit that went broke for being complete, lying, cheating scumbags FOUR YEARS ago.
But we still pay like clockwork.
The difference between then and now is that the people spinning the new mortgages never intended that everything would work out. Like the drunken rich boy with Daddy's Lexus......picking up a dime bag of crack in the ghetto and a bag full of 40's.....who cares if he crashes the fucking thing? Someone else will pay.
One of my soccer players.....a gifted striker......was making 6% on every loan he sold, no matter what.
His real skill was in his rock band in San Diego. Trust me....he will not have to pay back his commission on all those bad loans......Nor could he.
Personal Responsibility used to be the standard of the Republican Party. I have been embarrassed for the last eight years to the point of grovelling. This last week has caused me to question the actual sanity of my fellow citizens.
I am well armed.....but possibly not well armed enough to protect myself from the every other guy who thinks that what is going on is either OK, or Obama's fault.
Can a stupid country survive?