I received a comment on "BURSTING OF CREDIT BUBBLE UNDERLIES STOCK MARKET TURBULENCE," which was a repost of a Socialist article about the developing credit/debt crisis written back in early August of 2007. It got me to thinking in my reply to the commentator about how I heard over and over, "Who could have known" about the terrible mismanagement of the economy. It occurred to me that I may never have explained my own situation and how it pertains directly to that "Who could have known" nonsense.

Back in April 2001, I started looking for residential investment properties. I used the old-school method. I looked for a capitalization rate I could live with. I looked for positive cash flow. I looked for properties I could improve. I made dozens of offers, but had no takers. I didn't even get one counter-offer. The agent I was dealing with became rather exasperated with me. I was using the exact same criteria I had used a couple of decades before that had reaped huge, relative rewards for my parents. I won't go into why I didn't continue. It's too personal and other people's feelings will be unnecessarily hurt. We've all gotten beyond things from decades ago even if not quite as frankly as I would prefer, but some people are just more willing to risk self-evaluation than are others. Enough said on that.

Well, the real estate market was literally requiring that I throw caution to the wind. That was before I was a Christian by the way. I hadn't done enough studying to truly know what Jesus was teaching. I was too swept up by American socialization. It had been a long time since I bought the whole thing hook-line-and-sinker, but things were going just poorly enough that I questioned whether I knew better, so I kept trying the American party line.

Getting back to the subject of the real estate and as I mentioned in my comment cited above, back in 2001:

...smaller residential real estate landlords were buying based nearly entirely on appreciation.

I was rusty in investing, but I had studied John T. Reed (not an endorsement of all things John T. Reed; he does know his way around the capitalist-investing system though [real estate]). His investing strategy warned against bubbles. I trusted what I had learned. I backed off looking for real estate investments I could afford (that the lenders would let me buy but would send me into bankruptcy a few years later if I weren't to have gotten out in time — something I didn't feel comfortable about back then — now I know it's insider information) and slowly started analyzing what's wrong with the whole system again. I had done it once before in my late teens. Then came 9/11 followed by Afghanistan but then the hugely conspicuous Iraq invasion. That led me to search out the answers as to why things were heading so wrong again (Vietnam-War wrong). I just didn't think the American people were stupid enough to vote in people who would lead the nation back into that level of pure evil.


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And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)

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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.
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    • I believe there are cycles to things around including financial markets and real estates just there are cycles in weather.

      7 years of prosperity and 7 years of scarcity.

    • @Benjamin Lee -

      Hi Benjamin Lee,

      Yes, there are cycles. Some are natural. Others are human caused.


      Tom Usher