Wednesday, February 14, 2007

CondoFlip.com Flops

The Condoflip.com website which was proudly declared that "Bubble Are for Bathtubs" is now longer operational. The site has been 'retired.' Instead there is now a website called Condo Super Center. They explain what happened:
How Did The Market Change in 2004 and Beyond? We saw a dramatic shift in how preconstruction condos were bought and sold. The condo boom was driven by overly-ambitious speculators, many of whom had been successful in flipping condos in the past. As condo inventories grew and prices rose many speculators realized that further purchasing was increasingly risky. So, buyers just stopped buying.

What Kinds of Results Did Condo Flip See? We saw thousands of sellers, and very few buyers. It didn't make sense for us to maintain a marketplace where there were few buyers

That is the supply of condos has now overwhelmed the demand. Much of the demand for condos in the Miami during the 2001 - 2005 period was speculators anyway. Despite, the meltdown in the Miami condo market. The site goes on and writes:

We have NOT seen prices drop, nor do we expect them to drop. The rapid appreciation, however, seems to have stabilized to about 5-7% per year.

No. Prices for individual condo units are down in the Miami area as speculators are trying to unload unwanted properties. Back on July 18th, 2006, I wondered how long this site would last "We will see how long this internet based condo flipping company lasts. This gives a whole new meaning to dot condo."

61 comments:

  1. "The rapid appreciation, however, seems to have stabilized to about 5-7% per year."

    Um, right. Leaving aside whether or not appreciation is still happenning, there is nothing stable about appreciation that is running at 1.5-2 times income growth.

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  2. I think they should just change the name to:

    condoFLOP.com

    lol

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  3. Note the second main heading: "Great News About Miami Real Estate! Just As We Predicted." This is nauseating. It's what Lereah and the NAR are doing too - retroactively changing their "predictions" to match what happened and conveniently leaving out everything which was said in error.

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  4. Lance will say:

    Although I don't recommend flipping condos myself, I certainly urge HHs to take a look at what they can afford and get into the commitment. Flipping is only relevant if one has to sell quickly. If you can buy for the long term and can afford it, then it is certainly better than being a bitter renter. Also flippers only make up 0.01% of the market. So it is interesting to see all you BHs get excited about this. Miami also is not part of the US and should not be considered in the statistics. It is really amusing to see all the BHs look for non-existent signs of a bubble. There is no bubble, and there never will be. I said this way back in 2005. The only safe thing to do is buy now with whatever loan you can get and no matter how you have to stretch yourself. I have posted facts here. I would urge BHs to look at my data and 40 years of wisdom. blah, blah, blah....

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  5. Hey David,

    This is a great find... but I already wrote about this 2 weeks ago.

    Condoflip Officially Condoflopped?
    and
    I called it 2 days early!

    John Doe
    socalbubbl.blogspot.com

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  6. Lance, of course, knows better:

    Quoting DR Horton CEO Don Tomnitz, “We’re in the early stages of the current housing slowdown. Most of these downturns are longer and deeper, and right now we do not see anything on the horizon that would change that opinion. We continue to see a very challenging industry environment for fiscal 2007.” He said their lot position is down 25% and construction is down 35% from the high in June 2006. Orders are down about 25% and the value of homes on order declined 28%, as the company used incentives to lure buyers."

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  7. Anon 12:07,

    When you are in the market for a car, do you expect to get your best deal when automakers and dealers are fat and happy? ... or when they are in a very challenging industry environment. Therein lies the danger in a prospective homeowner confusing the duelling objectives of being a consumer/homeowner (with a housing expense) or a real estate investor looking to get a return on his money.

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  8. Lance should have said:

    "I am sorry when I said Subprime mortgages make less than 1% of the total mortgages. I am sorry to have said, it is a good time to buy anywhere anytime anyhow. But since you guys have beaten me down with my own bullshit, I will modify my stance to say 'It is a good time to buy now because Lenders are now Fat and Happy'. Sorry for the confusion. I am an idiot."

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  9. Some good news. My friend in the Arlington DC area is managing to sell his condos and do so without bleeding to death. Not much or any profits, but so far he has yet to take a loss. He is saving face I'm sure, and only considering purchase price, not the cost of carrying and improving the properties. Lots of sweat equity down the drain.

    But no bankruptcy and living in his car, either.

    He sounded a lot like Lance right up to the moment the loans started to reset and he sucked wind for five months waiting for an offer on that first condo that was losing money.

    But that one sold, the next one is to be signed on soon, and he's putting two more on the market like any second.

    I hope he learned something. Probably not. The next condo bubble he'll be back in there with interest only loans and 0% down yelling "It's DIFFERENT this time. It IS! Really, can't you see it? Let me explain. . . "

    God Save Us All

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  10. David,

    Anon's 9:58 post is a personal attack. It contributes nothing to the discussion. Why do you allow such personal attacks on HHs when you certainly wouldn't for BHs?

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  11. You can see what the website looked like back in late 2005 with a link to WebArchive.org or www.tinyurl.com/2a7yxk

    Very funny that they are out of business. You might become the new FuckedCompany.com a great website during the dot.com bubble.

    Thanks

    Frank - Virginia Realtor
    BLOG.FranklyRealty.com

    As seen in BusinessWeek, WSJ, NY Times.

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  12. It contributes nothing to the discussion.

    Neither do you.

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  13. David,

    I posted this under the NAR post too, so I apologize for posting this again. This is too good, it deserves its own blog entry. This is a quote from David LIErah from May 2002.


    The national median existing-home price was $150,900 during the first quarter, up 8.0 percent from the first quarter of 2001 when the median price was $139,700. The median is the midpoint, which is a typical market price where half of the units sold for more and half sold for less.

    David Lereah, NAR's chief economist, said affordability in most areas remains favorable despite the rise in home prices. "Although low interest rates are the most important factor in housing affordability, the other components -- income and price -- remain in balance," he said.

    "We expect we'll be able to preserve the balance between home prices and family income in the future," Lereah said. "Over the last 25 years, the ratio of median home price to median family income has been in the range of 2.5 to 3.0. Even with the run-up in home prices during the first quarter the ratio was 2.9, so it's staying within the historical range."


    http://www.scienceblog.com/community/older/archives/K/5/pub5706.html

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  14. Dear Lance, Acually a car dealer is going to be more inclined to give a deal when they are "fat and Happy". You see a car salesman gets a higher percentage as sales increase. So if he, or his team, sold one car they get say 10% of the sale. If they sell 2 cars the percentage they get for each car goes up to 11%. I.E. sell 1 car for $10,000, get $1,000. Sell 2 cars for $10,000 each, get $2,200. So, if a car saleman has already sold a lot of cars, its a great time to get a deal from them because they will make more money on the cars previously sold. Just one of lifes little lessons that can be learned from experience, and I'm happy to give it. Perhaps one day I will explain house buying to you.

    JOhn

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  15. "It contributes nothing to the discussion.

    Neither do you. "

    Considering this entire board is now about lance, this is obviously not true regardless of what you think of the housing market.

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  16. I was just re-reading the FED report about the importance of subprime loans in respect to the social policy they play and thought the following quote from the report would be helpful in our discussion in that it explains the real purpose behind them.

    Despite the caveats, the net social evaluation of these trends is probably a strong positive. The 9 million new homeowners, more than half of whom are minorities and many of whom have lower incomes, suggest that credit and ownership markets are democratizing. Millions of lower-income and minority households now have a chance to own homes and to build wealth; and the vast majority of these new homeowners do not appear to be having credit problems. The rates of serious delinquencies and near-serious delinquencies do raise important warning flags and should inspire renewed efforts to prevent foreclosures, but they do not seem high enough to challenge the overall positive assessment.

    I am pointing this out because BHs are using the relatively high deliquency rate of subprime loans (7% vs 1%) as an example of the bubble that is coming, but in so doing they are really showing that they don't understand the concept of a subprime loan ... and that high deliquency rates were expected on these loans from the inception. They are a tool of good social policy. The deliquencies coming out of them are also not significant enough to make an iota of difference to either our economy or to the price of homes. They really shouldn't even be mentioned in the debate as to whether there is a bubble. At best, BHs who reference them as proof of their beliefs come off as ignorant since their cost was a planned one, at worst as racist since they are advocating stopping the one tool that has allowed many people of color who otherwise couldn't own a home to own one for the first time ... They are an admirable social policy tool ... and not related in the least to whether or not a bubble exists.

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  17. Please everybody take a look at this blog entry (found on Boston Bubble site)... I'm from the Boston area and this infuriates me to no end...the audacity and greed of the "flippers"...These people are living in a fantasy world...I want to scream to all that will listen, "Please do not buy this from this jackass..."

    http://www.bostonbubble.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=188

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  18. I have a question. How much prices are going to decline around here? I am talking about townhouses and condos. I hear 40% to 50% declines. How long this will take? Anyone knows? Thank you guys!

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  19. A FLOP. HAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Anyone read lereah's propaganda lately?

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  20. This almost made be blow milk out my nose:

    Lereah said (in 2002):

    "We expect we'll be able to preserve the balance between home prices and family income in the future," Lereah said. "Over the last 25 years, the ratio of median home price to median family income has been in the range of 2.5 to 3.0. Even with the run-up in home prices during the first quarter the ratio was 2.9, so it's staying within the historical range."

    So what is he saying now that the ratio is up around 5.0 in the D.C. area?

    Well, after the NAR released their report today showing that for the last quarter of 2006, the median existing single-family home price fell 2.7 percent form a year earlier, Lereah of course said:

    David Lereah, NAR’s chief economist, said it appears the fourth quarter was the bottom for the current housing cycle. “This information confirms 2006 was the year of contraction, and hopefully the fourth quarter was the bottom of this current business cycle,” he said. “Home sales are leveling at historically high levels, and examination of data within the quarter shows home prices stabilizing toward the end. When we get the figures for this spring, I expect to see a discernable improvement in both sales and prices.”

    (This, of course, from NAR's press release)

    A "hopeful" "examination of the data" = an overly optimistic torture based on a thousand unstated assumptions that contradict reality.

    What about that existing price to income ratio of 5.0? How is that going to be magically overcome this spring? Well, of course, didn't everyone get a 100% raise this year?

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  21. Lance said . .
    "at worst as racist since they are advocating stopping the one tool that has allowed many people of color who otherwise couldn't own a home to own one for the first time"

    oh give me a break--what you are saying is in itself racist (i.e. poor people are black). I know plenty of low income "white trash". The system isn't racist. It is very clear. Except for the past 5 crazy years. ANYONE can get a good mortgage the caveat was 20% down and a good income to debt ratio . . it didn't matter what color your skin, black, white, yellow, green, it didn't matter.

    What is truly criminal is advocating risky mortgages to folks who don't make a whole lot of money and who prob. don't have a lot of time to study the markets and are the people of dropped out of h.s. and college.

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  22. "I am talking about townhouses and condos. I hear 40% to 50% declines."

    This is at the upper end of what is expected for condos and townhouses, but it is quite possible that not all of those loses will be in "real" dollars. Over the next few years the condo/townhouse market will be flat/declining and inflation will do a good bit of the damage.(2-3% per year for 3-6 years will add up to a lot)

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  23. If you guys want to know why "lance" suddenly turned into mr angry guy, check out his zip code's Jan numbers...20009.

    http://www.mris.com/reports/stats/

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  24. "What about that existing price to income ratio of 5.0? "

    Do we have to embarrass you again about using median incomes in DC?

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  25. "I have a question. How much prices are going to decline around here? I am talking about townhouses and condos. I hear 40% to 50% declines. How long this will take? Anyone knows? Thank you guys!"

    Nobody 'knows', but past history suggests that over the next 5-8 years real prices could decline 30-40% for any bubble market as a whole, with nominal prices declining 15-25%. Condos in overbuilt areas such as the Orange line corridor in north Arlington have the potential to go down even further.

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  26. For those who keep saying I never back my words with reports, numbers, etc. Here's a recent report about the state of the housing lending business in the US along with a forecast of where we are heading. Of course, like the poster who linked that great article explaining why demand had shot up tremendously in the last decade, I expect the BHs will chose to ignore this report and just continue along with their heads in the sand. Anything that doesn't support their blind faith in the hope that a bursting bubble will give them something for nothing, just seems to get ignored by them. It doesn't fit in with their "dreams". For those of you brave enough to read this, read it and weep. Hopefully, it'll put enough of a dose of reality in you to make you understanding that you will be old and grey before you buy if you are waiting for a bursting bubble in order to do so.

    http://tinyurl.com/26u4ka

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  27. 1. According to Credit Suisse and Loan Performance, the portion of subprime mortgages that come as "piggyback" form to finance 100% of the home purchase accounted to 33% in 2004, 44% in 2005 and 50% in 2006.
    2. According to Inside Mortgage Finance (http://www.imfpubs.com/), Subprime Mortgage Share of the Total Mortgage Market was ~19% in 2004, 21% in 2005 and ~23% in 2006...

    I'm sure Lance will be able to twist it anyway, so NAR should get rid of David Lereah and hire Lance right away - I would ...

    3. Also, just check this - http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/workshops/mortgage/presentations/cutts.pdf

    4.... and this (about subprimes, if you have time) - http://web.mit.edu/joshuali/Public/JObs2/GS%20Subprime%20Primer.pdf

    5.... and this (from BearStearns, Sept.06)- http://www.ams.jhu.edu/~daudley/444/reference_docs/BS%20Guide%20to%20Non-Agency%20MBS.pdf

    Buy NOW!!! this time is different!!! New economy!!! New financial tools!!! ... just can't stop laughing... Lance, you are GREAT!!!

    TaxEvader

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  28. caveat: Great point. Here in Phoenix, our price/income ratio is over 8.

    No bubble here, keep moving.

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  29. nice report lance, too bad it has already been proven wrong. It stated that 4th quarter 06 would be the trough for homebuilding. well, with recent news indicating record low hosuing starts, the 06 4q trough forecast is way off. Next time post a report directly from the nar, it will have the same credibility.
    carry on.

    ps. don't worry about the 100K you just lost in your house, it wont matter unless you need to sell sometime in the next 10 years.

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  30. Why does anyone even try to fight or argue that there is a bubble? I mean come on, how much worse does it have to get. Check out these 2006 San Diego Home Prices numbers and you see that it was the worst on record - ON RECORD!

    Please do not try and even convince me or any rational human that this is not a bubble or that this bubble won't pop or that this is a soft landing!

    Seriously - please don't!

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  31. Lance...uh, you are kidding right? I just read that PDF.

    1. Its from an industry group, mortgage bankers. This is much like defending "Its always a great time to buy!", by quoting Learah.

    2. Most of the raw data they source goes _against_ your assertions. Especially on % of loans in I/O and Option ARMs, forclosure rates, etc... Now I'm sure you love their spin on the raw data, but spin and a quarter million won't buy you a condo.

    3. The spin itself, while expected for industry shills, doesn't really go with the data. They do a lot of flipping of scope as needed to spin. My favorite being that they declare you have to compartmentalize markets on loan activity...except for forclosure rates which need to only be considered on macro national figures. Of course if you don't selectively choose scope, you get a much uglier picture.

    Really, Lancie-boy, you need to do a bit more research than industry shills. I don't take bubble blogs at face value, I try to geta cross section of data interpretation from acadamia, industry shills, govt, and wall street.

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  32. Lance said...
    “For those who keep saying I never back my words with reports, numbers, etc. Here's a recent report about the state of the housing lending business in the US along with a forecast of where we are heading.”

    How convenient “Lance”, a report from the Mortgage Bankers Association. I guess It’s a good thing they don’t have a vested interest in real estate....wait a minute....what kind of products do folks in this association sell?

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  33. Anon 5:38 said . .
    ""What about that existing price to income ratio of 5.0? "

    Do we have to embarrass you again about using median incomes in DC?"

    1st off I don't recall anyone "proving" that is a meaningless stat. Considering we have a higer ratio than San Fran. had in 97! Consider that across the board just about every major metropolitan area has had it increase at least 25-30%, some 100+%. Oh that's right it's "different" this time. If that's the case then why for over 30+ years has the avg. been around 2-3 if it doesn't matter??

    Lance. ..
    your article had some good facts, unfortunately two faults with it. It was provided by the mortgage industry, it is in their best interest to make it rosy, so if you expect an honest assessment from them, wow. You can easily take those exact same charts and make an better argument that it's not going to continue to go up.

    They took down the link, but McEnearney had a great article at the beginning of last year on where the market was going. They said it would "only" appreciate at 6-7%, hah, big laugh since it depreciated only 2-3%. Off by 10% not bad.

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  34. "at worst as racist since they are advocating stopping the one tool that has allowed many people of color who otherwise couldn't own a home to own one for the first time"

    Have you ever noticed when a liberal is losing an argument, they always pull the racist card?

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  35. anon said:
    caveat: Great point. Here in Phoenix, our price/income ratio is over 8.

    What the heck happened to make national real estate priced at unsustainable levels.

    I live in an area where if anyone had to pay at today's prices, they couldn't afford it. So we're seeing geographic lock.

    However, coworkers keep coming to me to get out of state. The latest... people bragging that if they don't get a significant pay raise that they'll just "cash out" of their home and move on.

    Ok, I see nothing wrong with that. But some are burning their bridges a wee bit early...

    Got popcorn?
    Neil

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  36. Neil said:
    "However, coworkers keep coming to me to get out of state. The latest... people bragging that if they don't get a significant pay raise that they'll just "cash out" of their home and move on."

    Neil, you've just brought up a very important reason why from a macro viewpoint prices have had to go as high as they have. When an economy is in high growth mode, there needs to be a reason for people to "seed out" into other areas ... thereby giving the economy room to grow and nourish itself further. Do you think the first European immigrants to the Americas came because they were attracted by the wilderness and the natives already here? No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands. With few exceptions, it wasn't the wealthy and that came here. It was those that wanted the cheaper land prices and the greater opportunity that comes with being in a better position resource-wise when one's expenses are lower. Ironically of course, many came with the expectation of returning "home" after they'd made their fortunes. In like manner, the fact that highly successful cities such as San Francisco and NYC have high housing prices isn't surprising. And the fact that Washington which is in its ascendency is experience like rises in prices is also not surprising. Afterall, the educated masses to populate places like the Research Triangle area of North Carolina have to come from somewhere. Super high residential prices can be a good thing from a longterm and macro economic view. And in these circumstances, one has to question the ascertion that prices MUST as a matter of economic "law" come down to allow median families to buy.

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  37. Anon 5:38

    You can't embarrass me again if you have not done it once. I reject the premise that median incomes in the DC area do not matter. I echo the sentiments of Anon 2:02. Do you have a link to or a summary of an argument that answers this debate for time all eternal? If you reject median incomes, how do you historically gage affordability? Please, please, embarrass us with your wisdom.

    Lance,

    Bravo on finally posting something of substance, but you really should take the advice of those telling you to read the document before posting a link to it. The Mortgage Bankers Association is dedicated to protecting mortgage bankers by keeping mortgage applications up and convincing Congress that we don't need any more pesky laws protecting consumers, because the market will take care of everything. To a large extent they are right, but they are biased.

    That point aside, two tidbits from the executive summary convince me that we are nowhere near the bottom. First, IO and ARM mortgages are 50% of all new originations, and 80% of all existing mortgages are new originations that will be resetting in the next 2-5 years. Financially speaking, you have to be just plain dumb to take an adjustable rate mortgage when interest rates are at or near historic lows. These mortgages were designed to get people to buy when interest rates were high. These startling figures confirm that people are buying more house than they can afford, and this is simply unsustainable. Furthermore, what seems to get lost in this debate is that houses are money pits. Nearly everyone who bought a house in the last 5 years had to waive their home inspection. What is going to happen to all these IO and ARM buyers when their loan resets and they have to replace the roof or HVAC system?

    Second, the summary says that they expect home prices to rise by "the low single digits" in the next couple of years, which roughly means around the rate of inflation. If this is the most optimistic forecast they can devise, then I may weep tears of joy. This proves that the renter would be better off taking the difference between renting and buying and investing that amount in the stock market. That investment would be worth more than the house had appreciated in a couple of years, and the renter could still buy the house at roughly the same price two years later, assuming his income also rose with inflation.

    Keep those toes and fingers, and whatever else you got, crossed.

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  38. Caveat Emptor said...
    “Furthermore, what seems to get lost in this debate is that houses are money pits. Nearly everyone who bought a house in the last 5 years had to waive their home inspection. What is going to happen to all these IO and ARM buyers when their loan resets and they have to replace the roof or HVAC system?”

    I agree. A Lot of DIY flippers out there cutting corners to “save” a few bucks. Any episode of “Flip this House” will reveal as much.

    However, I also believe that these flippers may have shot themselves in the foot. While structurally/mechanically these homes may be questionable, they do add the eye candy with hardwood floors, granite countertops, nice appliances ect. With sales slowing and inventory rising, inspections will reveal some of the structure/mechanical flaws that must be improved upon and/or reflected in price, in addition too the “eye candy” that the seller/flipper must provide to compete with the house next door.

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  39. Lance said . . .
    Afterall, the educated masses to populate places like the Research Triangle area of North Carolina have to come from somewhere. Super high residential prices can be a good thing from a longterm and macro economic view.

    Wow, lance just showed his true colors as an elitist. I'm sorry that those of us not from NYC, the OC, or DC are not smart enough to combat with the educated likes of Lance.

    I'm glad we have yuz smart people from New york to tich us haow to taulk. I'z don't know what I'z do if I'z didn't have uz smart peaple to show me the way.

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  40. "No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands."

    This has got to be the stupidest post of the last week, and that is saying something...

    Open a history book lance, please...

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  41. Anonymous said...
    ""No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands."

    This has got to be the stupidest post of the last week, and that is saying something...

    Open a history book lance, please..."

    That's right, sorry I don't know where I could have gotten the idea that people came here because it was the land of opportunity? Nope, they were all fat and happy land owners over there who decided to give up all they had for a very uncertain future here. I stand corrected. YOUR version of history MUST be correct. After all, it makes sense .... right? Just like the bubble theory ...

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  42. "That's right, sorry I don't know where I could have gotten the idea that people came here because it was the land of opportunity?"

    You are right, I shouldn't have made fun of you. Next time I will just explain things to you like the child you appear to be.

    There were numerous reasons why people moved from the old world to the new world. Many of those reason were commercial, and MANY of them were about breaking out of the old world's stagnant social structure, not to mention numerous religious groups, utopians, criminals, and of course various adventurers.

    Now... how you got from the extremely complex truth to something relating to the HOUSING MARKET is a mystery to me. By and large immigrants to the US were not coming here because they had good paying jobs but thought their housing market was too high...

    In most cases they came here because they had no opportunity whatsoever in their homeland and they could either stay at "home" and live in poverty, and in some cases persecution, or they could roll the dice on moving to the new world and making a better life.

    It wasn't about housing. It wasn't about how many square feet you could get for a dollar. It was about opportunity in a broad sense. The old world social structure simply didn't allow average people to rise.

    I am sure this is all wasted on you however. Please go ahead thinking that the people who immigrated to the US were young "professionals" with graduate degrees looking for a bargain price on a house

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  43. Anon 5:12 said:
    "I am sure this is all wasted on you however. Please go ahead thinking that the people who immigrated to the US were young "professionals" with graduate degrees looking for a bargain price on a house"

    Oh please, give me a break. Holding a college degree in the 21st century doesn't make you any more professional than your 19th century ancestors who immigrated here. If you don't own property here now, you are in no better (or worse) position than they were there then. And if you are thinking of moving to a lower cost area in order to be a property owner, then you are doing just as they did. Moving for economic opportunity. I don't hear happy and secure homeowners threatening to leave the area because of "high" housing prices. If you don't understand that economics is the root of all things in history, then you don't understand history ... or the present. Sorry, but high prices in places like NYC ... and now Washington are macro-economic "nudgers" that in the end play a part in "growing" the economy further by encouraging movement. Why do you think Europe got itself in trouble in the 20th century by de-incentivising labor markets from moving where they were best needed? It wasn't till the very end of the century that politicians such as Thatcher realized it served no purpose to prop up labor markets in places such as the old mining areas in the north when people where more needed anyways in places such as London with its expanding service and financial markets. Sorry, but you need to talk to yourself like a child because it is so so obvious that you are anything but knowledgeable in these matters ... And if you think government or whoever should step in to lower prices in thriving metropolitan areas just so that you can afford to stay, then you are no more economically savvy than those shortsighted European politicians of yesteryear who did themselves such harm in creating a stagnant welfare state. Sorry, if you don't like what you can afford here, then move. You'll be helping the general economy along along the way ... as well as yourself.

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  44. "Oh please, give me a break. Holding a college degree in the 21st century doesn't make you any more professional than your 19th century ancestors who immigrated here. If you don't own property here now, you are in no better (or worse) position than they were there then."

    Heh, lets see... I personally make more than the median family income in DC, the USA, and for that matter the world... I have a college degree, a high quality job, and yes... I own productive farm land that has turned a profit every year of my life. (and decades before that)

    But if I haven't decided to buy a house in an over inflated market... oh no! Lance doesn't think I am better off than my family who immigrated here with nothing. Who immigrated here without sufficient money to even bring their nuclear family along and had to work to save enough money to accomplish that...

    "And if you are thinking of moving to a lower cost area in order to be a property owner, then you are doing just as they did. Moving for economic opportunity."

    You are without a doubt utterly clueless. You are comparing poor landless farmers in the 1800s to someone who brings home more money than the vast majority of this country, or any country's population? I could buy here tomorrow if I felt like it. It is just a question of whether or not that is a smart thing to do.

    "I don't hear happy and secure homeowners threatening to leave the area because of "high" housing prices. If you don't understand that economics is the root of all things in history, then you don't understand history ... or the present."


    I AM a property owner... what you are apparantly too dense to grasp is that while some "property" makes money, other property doesn't. Mine does...

    As for economics and history... you clearly don't have the slightest insight into either.

    "Sorry, but high prices in places like NYC ... and now Washington are macro-economic "nudgers" that in the end play a part in "growing" the economy further by encouraging movement. "

    Yeah... NYC... and now Washington, and Las Vegas, and Arizona, and Florida, and Boston, and New Jersey, and LA, and San Diego, and Reno, and on and on and on. Yep, everywhere just turned into NYC all at once! What a shock!

    "Sorry, but you need to talk to yourself like a child because it is so so obvious that you are anything but knowledgeable in these matters ... And if you think government or whoever should step in to lower prices in thriving metropolitan areas just so that you can afford to stay, then you are no more economically savvy than those shortsighted European politicians of yesteryear who did themselves such harm in creating a stagnant welfare state. "

    I don't need your approval to know that I am knowledgeable. In fact... I would be seriously concerned at this point if I found myself agreeing with you.

    As for asking the government to step in... is this another of your classic straw man arguments?

    Because I never said anything of the sort. The system is correcting itself. In a couple years this whole bubble will be another cautionary tale that another generation of lances will eventually convince themselves doesn't apply to them.

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  45. Do you think the first European immigrants to the Americas came because they were attracted by the wilderness and the natives already here? No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands.

    Anon 5:12 has already ridiculed this outrageous argument. He is right and you should listen to him. Your rebuttals just make you look dumber and dumber everyday.

    Immigration to the United States (and I am an immigrant) has nothing to do with Housing Prices. Yes, this housing forum seems to be your lifesource, now that you are old and retired from your real-estate job and want attention in any way possible. Please keep this this Housing Market discussion in perspective. Us Housing Bears think the current housing situation is important but not as important as say World War II or reasons for immigration to the Great United States of America.

    That's right, sorry I don't know where I could have gotten the idea that people came here because it was the land of opportunity?

    Please see my earlier point of looking dumber and dumber everyday. Yes people come here because it is the land of opportunity. It is a country where anything is possible. Its a country where the system works. The justice system, the government, the higher education system. It is a country that values "work" as opposed to who you are. Hard work and ingenuity is guaranteed to give you and your family a good life. An entrepreneur with a great idea may strike it rich. Citizen rights are upheld.

    The reason why the United States works and other democracies don't are very complex. There is no simple answer to why this is the _most_ preferred country in the world. But it certainly is not because housing prices were cheaper in the US. I can't think of anybody who would make such an absurd claim.

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  46. Anon 9:55 said:
    "The reason why the United States works and other democracies don't are very complex. There is no simple answer to why this is the _most_ preferred country in the world. But it certainly is not because housing prices were cheaper in the US. I can't think of anybody who would make such an absurd claim.

    And that was never my claim. That was the strawman argument that Anon 5:12 created.

    I simply stated: "When an economy is in high growth mode, there needs to be a reason for people to "seed out" into other areas ..." ... and that was the silver lining to rising prices in areas with high growth (read: economic growth ... not population gain.) I wasn't addressing why people moved from one place to another in general. And I wasn't addressing why "the United States works" ... I was simply addressing how successful high economic growth cities "seed out" to spread their success to other areas ... and how the price of land and housing is all part of that equation.

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  47. "I simply stated: "When an economy is in high growth mode, there needs to be a reason for people to "seed out" into other areas ..." ... and that was the silver lining to rising prices in areas with high growth"

    Heh... lance... you don't learn do you? There is no point trying to back out of what you said when it is readily available for anyone to read just by scrolling up. Here is what you "just said" :

    "Do you think the first European immigrants to the Americas came because they were attracted by the wilderness and the natives already here? No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands."-Lance

    "I wasn't addressing why people moved from one place to another in general. And I wasn't addressing why "the United States works" ... I was simply addressing how successful high economic growth cities "seed out" to spread their success to other areas ... and how the price of land and housing is all part of that equation."-Lance

    Now, anyone that can read what you said above knows you weren't saying anything of the sort. You were trying to make another of your stupidly misinformed arguments that got shot down badly.

    Let me recap for you.

    1. People immigrating to the US were generally NOT doing so because of housing prices at all. Thus that specific statement is BS.

    2. People are FAR more likely to immigrate to the US from countries with poor economies than countries with booming economies. What was happening in Ireland when waves of Irish arrived? What was happening in Poland when waves of Poles arrived? What is happening in Mexico today and is driving waves of Mexicans to seek work in the US?

    All of these people left their homelands primarily in an attempt to find WORK or escape starvation.(and to a lesser extent avoid social or political upheaval)

    These were not people from "successful high growth cities" or "economies in high growth mode." These were people trying to escape a hopeless situation at home.

    Now I know you aren't the sharpest knife in the drawer and I know you have some kind of major personal flaw that prevents you from admitting when you are wrong.... but honestly. Even by your standards this is a hopelessly stupid point to try to argue.

    We know what you stated. We have proven you wrong beyond any possible doubt. Don't waste our time trying to redefine the argument.

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  48. Anon 5:18,

    You're looking really stupid to anyone who has seriously looked at history. When you say "All of these people left their homelands primarily in an attempt to find WORK or escape starvation" you are mistaking the symptom for the cause. And why do you think these people needed work elsewhere and were starving? Do you think it just happened? Do a little research and you'll find that it all came down to too few farms to share, overcrowded cities that couldn't handle the exploding populations, and all the other hallmarks of a squeeze on available real estate.

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  49. "2. People are FAR more likely to immigrate to the US from countries with poor economies than countries with booming economies. What was happening in Ireland when waves of Irish arrived? What was happening in Poland when waves of Poles arrived? What is happening in Mexico today and is driving waves of Mexicans to seek work in the US?"

    And again. The immigrants from Europe only came up and they came up in the context of a place with high economic growth not being able to accomodate all its people and real estate prices accordingly being the decision maker as to who stays and who gets incentivised to move out and seed the successful economy elsewhere. No one but you has brought into the argument immigrants from poor countries. Again, in case you are dense, and I know at this point you are, my point was related soley to how high prices are really a good thing from a macro economic standpoint. How they serve to spread industrious and smart resources around .. thereby growing the economy further. If you can't understand what my point was than let's just leave it at that. It's no wonder you also believe that house prices are going to crash in spite of all evidence to the contrary. You're just not very bright. Accept it and continue renting ... owning would be way too complicated for you!

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  50. And again. The immigrants from Europe only came up and they came up in the context of a place with high economic growth not being able to accomodate all its people and real estate prices accordingly being the decision maker as to who stays and who gets incentivised to move out and seed the successful economy elsewhere.

    This is incorrect. Which era are you talking about? The 17th, 18th and 19th centuries were when European countries were the most advanced in society. Europeans rulers colonized almost the entire world - Africa, Australia, Indian subcontinent, The middle East and also the United States and Canada. The colonization was accompanied by vast majorities of Europeans also immigrating to these countries. In certain societies these colonizers were able to able to uproot the local culture (example United States), and in some they were not so succesful (like in India) and had to leave.

    Immigration to the United States today is completely different. Today it is not Europe, but the United States that is the most advanced country in the world. People (rich and poor) are immigrating to the United States because of this reason and the reasons pointed out by others before here in this forum.

    Both these reasons for immigration to the US have very little, if anything at all to do with "Housing Prices". People do not leave countries because land prices are high. This is gross oversimplification. There has to be a stimulus that is much greater than that. It really is a ridiculous argument

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  51. "You're looking really stupid to anyone who has seriously looked at history."

    I have a history degree, with a focus on US immigration history lance.

    "When you say "All of these people left their homelands primarily in an attempt to find WORK or escape starvation" you are mistaking the symptom for the cause."

    You asserted that the cause was high housing prices. I have more than proved this was not the case by this point. The only reason you persist in arguing is that you are too stubborn to admit you are wrong and will instead try to draw this out forever so you can claim you "won" in the end.

    "And why do you think these people needed work elsewhere and were starving? Do you think it just happened? Do a little research and you'll find that it all came down to too few farms to share, overcrowded cities that couldn't handle the exploding populations, and all the other hallmarks of a squeeze on available real estate. "

    Now you are mixing up several different things. Yes, in some cases there were shortages of farm land.(though in many cases there wasn't) That isn't at all what we are talking about however, because that is not the HOUSING MARKET. Farm land and the housing market are serve completely different needs. You claimed that areas with "high growth economies" forced people out and that is what drove immigration to the US.

    This is completely untrue. If you look at the economic situations of countries during the periods they were supplying the greatest numbers of immigrants to the US you will find that their economic situation was almost without exception quite poor.

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  52. "And again. The immigrants from Europe only came up and they came up in the context of a place with high economic growth not being able to accomodate all its people and real estate prices accordingly being the decision maker as to who stays and who gets incentivised to move out and seed the successful economy elsewhere."

    It is fact time lance, you know, the part of this discussion where you disappear.

    Show me the data showing that the economies of the European countries supplying immigrants to the US had strong economies at the time.

    Here is a little bit to get you started:

    "Ireland’s 1845 Potato Blight is often credited with launching the second wave of Irish immigration to America. The fungus which decimated potato crops created a devastating famine. Starvation plagued Ireland and within five years, a million Irish were dead while half a million had arrived in America to start a new life. Living conditions in Ireland were deplorable long before the Potato Blight of 1845, however, and a large number of Irish left their homeland as early as the 1820s.

    In fact, Ireland’s population decreased dramatically throughout the nineteenth century. Census figures show an Irish population of 8.2 million in 1841, 6.6 million a decade later, and only 4.7 million in 1891. It is estimated that as many as 4.5 million Irish arrived in America between 1820 and 1930.

    Between 1820 and 1860, the Irish constituted over one third of all immigrants to the United States. In the 1840s, they comprised nearly half of all immigrants to this nation. Interestingly, pre-famine immigrants from Ireland were predominately male, while in the famine years and their aftermath, entire families left the country. In later years, the majority of Irish immigrants were women. "
    http://memory.loc.gov/learn/features/immig/irish2.html

    Lets see... famine... deplorable living conditions... population shrinking from 8.2 million to 4.7 million.

    Clearly this was a high growth economy. Clearly they ran out of space as you tried to assert earlier...lol

    Go ahead Lance, find me some "high growth economies" that were forcing people to immigrate to the US...

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  53. anon 11:06,

    Do we have a little selective revisionism occuring here? Do you really not know that Ireland was part of the UK at the time ... and that the UK was probably the most high growth high, successful economy in the world at the time? And that it wasn't coincidental that when push came to shove it was the Irish nationalists getting "incentivized" to move out?

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  54. Anon 11:06,

    I'm assuming you are the same anon who said they had a history degree. Since you have a background in history, than I'm assuming it's not necessary for me to spend lots of time making the correlation for you between the citation I am going to post below and how the immigrants were priced out of the available land by those able to make better usage of it from a comparative economic advantage standpoint. In brief, the lan's usage became more valuable as "plantations" focused on mass farming than on "family farms" which served the dual purpose of providing farm produce AND housing. Your quoting the decrease of population is again your mistaking a symptom for a cause. High relative value of the remaining land (i.e., land remaining for non-plantation purposes) was high ... and pricing people out ... thus leading to declining populations. And btw, I am not "mixing things up" when bringing into the argument the value of land used for now residential purposes. It is all inter-related, especially when you are discussing farmers who lived off of the same land they resided on.

    Protestant Ascendancy: The gradual dispossession of native Catholic landowners in Ireland took place in various stages of from the reign of Elizabeth I until reaching its highest following the Williamite Wars. English soldiers and nobles became the new ruling class (see Plantations of Ireland). This process was facilitated and formalized in the legal system of the time by the passing of various Penal Laws, which discriminated against the newly displaced majority Catholic population and non-conforming Protestant denominations such as Presbyterians. As a result, political, legal, and economic power resided with the Ascendancy to the extent that by the mid-eighteenth century; 95% of the land of Ireland was calculated to be under Protestant control.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protestant_Ascendancy

    And just to bring things back to where they started. My orginial ascertion was simply that in the grand scheme of things high housing costs in successful, high-growth areas are a good thing in that they incentivize people to leave for places where their costs are cheaper and their relative advantages comparatively better. They help spread the economy. The Irish did a lot to help the US grow. In the grand scheme of things, would it have been better if the UK government had addressed the problem by providing subsidized state housing (a la USSR) for these people? ... and thereby disincentivized them from leaving?

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  55. The very fact that you are trying to argue that 19th century Ireland was a high growth economy with a hot housing market and THAT is what forced a mass Irish migration to the US demonstrates beyond any possible doubt that you are beyond help.

    For that matter the fact that people were losing their land due to political and cultural forces reinforces what I said earlier, that OTHER FACTORS, not a hot economy or a booming housing market are what was driving immigration.

    If you can't tell the difference between a farmer losing their land do to political forces and a "high growth economy" then again, you are beyond help.

    I suppose you think Zimbabwe is also a "high growth economy" now because the government there has decided to "redistribute" land to political supporters resulting in an exodus of the former land owners...


    You want another "high growth economy" that was "seeding out" by sending immigrants to the US? Here you go:

    "Between 1880 and 1920 over four million Italians were recorded as entering the United States. No other ethnic group has sent so many immigrants in such a short time. Prior to the 1870's only scattered thousands of Italians had come to areas outside of Europe to either North or South America. Up to 1900 most Italians had emigrated to either Argentina or Brazil. Those entering the United States were mostly male and many intended to return to Italy after making some money. However, for various reasons many of them ended up staying in America.

    ...

    The year 1871 is considered a starting point for mass migration from southern Italy. In this year, Italy had become a unified nation with a democratic constitution, however, the south had not reaped any economic benefit from this development. Conditions had actually gotten worse. Taxes increased and yet, nothing had been done to stimulate the stagnant economy of the south. The land was not looked after properly. It was not irrigated, trees were not planted to stop erosion and floods, and little was done to improve the quality of the soil. As the land grew poorer so did the peasants. Disease took is toll. Epidemics of cholera and malaria spurred thousands of southern Italians into leaving the country. Along with disease came a mysterious parasite that destroyed most of the grapevines in southern Italy. As a result, thousands of farmers found themselves without the means to make a living. Traditionally, the south of Italy had always been worse off than central and northern Italy. By the turn of the century it was barely possible to subsist. Most of the land was owned by a few wealthy nobles who lived in the north and allowed overseers to run their estates. In many townships water was a luxury. Roads and streets were impassable in bad weather. Winter was short, but it was harsh and the hovels had no heat. Summers were fiercely hot and accompanied by drought."

    http://www.yale.edu/ynhti/curriculum/units/1999/3/99.03.06.x.html

    Yep... "barely possible to subsist" sounds like another "high growth economy" with a hot housing market. No doubt about it... things were booming in southern Italy in the late 19th and early 20th cenutry... lol.

    Give it up lance. You were wrong again and it is obvious beyond any possible doubt.

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  56. It really is funny watching you argue with yourself. For the umpteenth time, I never said ALL immigration was due to individuals leaving high-growth successful areas. I said ... again ... maybe this time you will finally understand ... From a macro-economic standpoint, high housing prices in high-growth, successful areas are a good thing because they encourage smart successful (but wealth lacking) individuals to move out to less successful places and thereby "seed" them for futher growth ... Are you really incapable of seeing you've been arguing against yourself? This is hilarious ... Do you always misunderstand what people have said and then go about disagreeing with what you have in error assumed they said? And as for Ireland, sorry, it was definitely part of the high-growth successful part of the UK ... Dublin at the time was known as the "second city of the empire" ... Its and the Pale's wealth and success were beyond question. Yes, there were political reasons intertwined with the economic reasons ... as there always are everywhere.

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  57. "It really is funny watching you argue with yourself. For the umpteenth time, I never said ALL immigration was due to individuals leaving high-growth successful areas. I said ... again ... maybe this time you will finally understand ... From a macro-economic standpoint, high housing prices in high-growth, successful areas are a good thing because they encourage smart successful (but wealth lacking) individuals to move out to less successful places and thereby "seed" them for futher growth"

    Poor lance... somewhere the educational system failed you. Let me remove any doubt about what it is we are discussing. Here is your original quote:

    "Do you think the first European immigrants to the Americas came because they were attracted by the wilderness and the natives already here? No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands."-Lance

    Now, you may not have said "all" immigrants, but you certainly implied that was a driving force of European immigration. Now of course you were wrong and I have demonstrated that. Rather than just admitting that you were wrong all along and never should have made the statement, let alone tried to defend it... you are now trying to change the argument. That isn't going to happen.

    "Are you really incapable of seeing you've been arguing against yourself?"

    I am arguing against you lance. Watch as I quote you again...

    "And as for Ireland, sorry, it was definitely part of the high-growth successful part of the UK ... Dublin at the time was known as the "second city of the empire" ... Its and the Pale's wealth and success were beyond question. "-Lance

    If that isn't arguing... I don't know what is.

    Now, let me correct you again.

    The vast majority of the Irish immigrants to the US were NOT from Dublin. Even so... you are as usual... completely wrong in your original assertion. Dublin was NOT doing well economically at the time of mass Irish migration to the US.

    Here is the period of Dublin's history you were thinking about, note the dates:

    "Early Modern Period (1600-1800)
    The early modern period was one of increasing prosperity and economic growth along with geographical expansion of the city. The physical expansion of the city was aided by the influx of brick for construction. Additionally, during this time period the city's population doubled and may have even tripled. Dublin ranked at the 6th largest city in Europe throughout this period partially as a result of the economic success it gained by the growing adoption of capitalism. The city benefited largely from its status as the capital of Ireland under unified British rule and as an important entrepôt into the country. As the political, civil, social, and administrative heart of the country, it saw a winter influx of rural elite from the rest of the country to take part in the cultural exchange in the city. The city's role as a financial center and a port furthered its growth in status and prosperity. During this period, Irish industries developed including linen and wool, silk weaving , sugar refining, and metal work. The 1660's onward saw foreign immigration into the city from English and French Huguenots, and later from Dutch and Flemish protestants.
    In the 1700's the city underwent drastic geographical expansion to the south and east down the Liffey. During this time the Liffey was channeled into its present course. This time period also saw the importance of the Dublin Corporation in planning the city. St. Stephen's Green was planned, as was Temple Bar, Oxmantown Green, and further suburban expansion. Much of the construction during this time was regulated using contract rules requiring brick to prevent fire."

    Now, here is the period of Dublin's history that corresponds to the mass Irish migration to the US and elsewhere.

    "The Decline of the City
    The nineteenth century saw Dublin city fall into a state of decline. It's growth had been a product of its functional status as an entrepôt and a administrative center. In the 1800's Dublin had this functional status pulled out from under it through a series of changes in British policy. The Irish success in the last two hundred years, compounded with British losses in the American war for Independence resulted in Britain granting autonomy to the Irish parliament. The newfound power of the Irish parliament becoming a perceived threat to British rule in the following years and following the Irish rebellion in 1798, the British reinforced their control over the nation. The Act of Union (1800), was its way of re-asserting control, through policy that effectively lessened Irish control of the city and the country and made it effectively, a British agricultural province. This act was followed by a mass exodus of wealth and power from Ireland. The British policy of the 1840's took away all protective duties and state relief from the country, thus, further hurting the country by broad siding Irish industry with the full force of capitalist competition and wiping out its fledgling textile industries and many others. As unemployment rose in the city, state relief from Britain was cut off, leaving thousands in abject poverty. Disease and squalor infested the city and mortality rates skyrocketed for the poor. Housing problems multiplied and the poor lived in high density tenements that seldom if ever, could maintain the stresses being applied to them. During this period, Dublin saw the loss of many fine eighteenth century buildings.
    The rich moved out of the city to the suburbs to avoid the reality of their declining power and to negate any association with the poor of the inner city. While Dublin was hard hit with the effects of British policy, it maintained a significant merchant class and still acted as a center for administration and trade. The existence of wealth in Dublin created a huge discrepancy between the rich and poor, thus emphasizing further the state of Dublin's poor population.
    (Harvey, 1949)"

    http://www.macalester.edu/geography/courses/geog261/ksachs/History_of_Dublin.html

    There, now let me recap for you real quickly.

    Ireland was not doing well economically at the time of the mass Irish immigration to the US. In fact, during this period there were famines and massive economic problems in Ireland. This eventually drove more Irish out of the country than remained.

    The overwhelming majority of Irish immigrants to the US were not from Dublin. Furthmore, Dublin was not a hot economy either at the time of the mass immigration.


    Now, are you ready to be a man and simply admit that you were wrong, or are you going to keep trying to make arguments that are way way over your head?

    A hot housing market did NOT drive European immigration. Hot European economies did not drive the majority of European immigration.

    US immigration history has NOTHING to do with your stupid simplistic economic theories.

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  58. I never said ALL immigration was due to individuals leaving high-growth successful areas.

    Even if you said *some* immigration is due to real estate prices, that is wrong and you are full of it. People in countries with good economies, stable democratic government will not leave because of high real estate prices. This has been argued repeatedly, but the fact that you don't get is not surprising. We know you are incapable of understanding simple things and like to argue like a child.

    From a macro-economic standpoint, high housing prices in high-growth, successful areas are a good thing

    Really is this in the new book on macro-economics that you wrote? Do you even know what macro-economics means? High prices in real-estate or anything are not *good* for anything. By your argument high taxes are a good thing also, because it forces people to leave. If anything high real estate prices may be *consequence* of a good economy, but in now way can it be called a *good* thing for the economy.

    individuals to move out to less successful places and thereby "seed" them for futher growth ...

    Let us ignore your original statement that this allows individuals to leave the country which is *bullshit*. So yes, everybody knows that people are going to move to where the economy is good and lifestyle is affordable. Again people may move from NY to Austin, TX, but certainly nobody moves to Uganda because housing may be cheaper there.

    Nobody is arguing that a good economy leads to higher real estate prices. Go back and look at charts that compare rents, GDP growth vs housing prices growth. Then go look at the percentage of subprime, 100% financed, I/O ARMS, negam loans as a percentage of loan originations in the last few years. Look at the number of lenders going bankrupt every week. Look at the number of foreclosures every month. Then come back and argue that high real estate prices are a *good* thing.

    When you don't talk about this and point out childishly that people moved to the US because of cheap land prices (do you want me to quote you), then you will be flamed. When you are flamed, just sit quietly and don't respond as your arguments look sillier than your original post.

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  59. Anon said:
    "When you don't talk about this and point out childishly that people moved to the US because of cheap land prices (do you want me to quote you), then you will be flamed."

    Again, I never said ALL people moved here because of cheap land prices. What I said, again, is that high real estate prices in high growth successful areas serve a good purpose. The incentivize some of the best elements in society to move to lower cost areas and help grow those areas. You have a serious comprehension problem. Perhaps that is why you are having such problems buying?

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  60. Again, I never said ALL people moved here because of cheap land prices. What I said, again, is that high real estate prices in high growth successful areas serve a good purpose. The incentivize some of the best elements in society to move to lower cost areas and help grow those areas.

    All this has been already discusses above, and you are adding nothing to the "discussion", if you can call it that.

    You have a serious comprehension problem.

    What you said is in plain sight for everyone to read. This is what you said:

    Do you think the first European immigrants to the Americas came because they were attracted by the wilderness and the natives already here? No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands.

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  61. I love it.. here is what Lance says now...

    "Again, I never said ALL people moved here because of cheap land prices. What I said, again, is that high real estate prices in high growth successful areas serve a good purpose. The incentivize some of the best elements in society to move to lower cost areas and help grow those areas. You have a serious comprehension problem. Perhaps that is why you are having such problems buying?"

    and here is what he ORIGINALLY tried to argue:

    "Do you think the first European immigrants to the Americas came because they were attracted by the wilderness and the natives already here? No, they left because they'd been effectively "priced out" of their European homelands."-Lance

    Funny how he isn't man enough to just admit he was wrong about immigration to the US...

    If he had even a shred of integrity he wouldn't be trying to wiggle out of his mistake, he would simply admit that he didn't know what he was talking about and mispoke. Of course he isn't going to do that... not lance... he hasn't been wrong yet.

    Instead he tried to argue with someone who has actually studied US immigration history about whether or not Ireland and southern Italy had "booming economies" during the period there was a mass migration out of those locations.

    Now that he has been hopelessly shot down he is left with nothing but attempts to redefine the argument.

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