Monthly Archives: July 2012

Shh! Idiots at play

” Of course I’m a moron, but I vote!

Plastic bag bans just another feel-good eco-fad. Gee, phony “science”, scare stories, politicians regulating things they know nothing about, school children taught about evil? Somehow all this sounds familiar.

“The evidence points to the fact that banning the bags may actually be a net negative for the environment, yielding little benefit to wildlife while significantly increasing carbon emissions and other environmental impacts.

[snip]

 

[I]t should be noted that the benefit of banning plastic bags is mitigated by the fact that half of the bags are used for other purposes, like for garbage bags or for picking up after pets. Grocery shoppers will still have to buy other bags, likely plastic, for those purposes.

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Another law that Obama chooses to overturn

Obama overrides federal law requiring sixty-day lay off notices to workers. Those notices are scheduled to go out to tens of thousands of defense industry workers just days before the election so, while the Messiah’s base would cheer such a development, Obama wants to wait. “After I’m reelected I’ll have more flexibility, Vladimir”.

Imagine, if you can, the reaction by the press if Bush had overridden five federal laws in as many months? So far, news of Obama’s lawlessness has not been deemed fit to print.

Obama’s Labor Department on Monday issued “guidance” to the states, telling them that a federal law requiring advance notice of mass layoffs does not apply to the layoffs that may occur in January as a result of automatic budget cuts known as “sequestration.”

Inhofe, appearing on Fox & Friends Tuesday morning, said President Obama, through his Labor Department, “is trying to intimidate businesses, companies, corporations — not just defense contractors — into not issuing the pink slips,” which are required by federal law 60 days before mass layoffs or plant closings.

“(T)he president doesn’t really want all these pink slips going out five days before the election,” Inhofe said.

He noted that if the automatic budget cuts kick in on Jan. 2 — as they will if Congress can’t reach a deficit-reduction agreement — layoff notices would have to go out no later than Nov. 2. The general election is on Nov. 6.

Under the WARN Act — The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act — companies with more than 100 employees must give 60 days’ notice if there is to be a mass layoff during any 30-day period for 500 or more employees (or for 50-499 employees if they make up at least 33% of the employer’s active workforce).

But in guidance issued on Monday, Assistant Labor Secretary Jane Oates said never mind about those pink slips….

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How much, exactly, has Old Greenwich “waterfront” appreciated?

We’ll find out, eventually, when 15 East Point Lane sells. It came on today asking $7.850 million, a rather large jump from its 2005 sales price of $5.1 million. So far as the listing tells us, nothing’s been added to or improved in this house since it was built in 2004 so it’s apples to apples time.

I’d be more sanguine about its chances if its views stretched east down the Sound rather than north to its neighbors, but I’ll be watching this one with curiosity.

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Free renovations up on Close Road

45 Close Road has dropped its price again and is now asking $4.999 million. Lovely land, a nifty renovation but still a small house (plenty of FAR to expand or even build new, if you wish). What caught my eye is that the seller paid $5.5 million for the place in 2007 and must have spent what, a million? renovating. In any event, she priced it at $7.795 in 2010 so presumably the renovations cost less than that. And now, whatever she put into it is yours free, plus $500,000 for your troubles.

I’d love to live here, but the general taste for houses in this price range demands much more space. If you want small and elegant, this could work for you.

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Well this is just wrong

Business Insider has a blazing headline this afternoon, “Springtime isn’t the best season to sell homes”. They’ve got lots of color charts to illustrate their point but, as is often the case with that rag, its reporter doesn’t ask the right question. If you’re looking for market activity, it’s the contract date that’s relevant, not the actual closing date, which often comes months later and is affected by school vacations and the like.

The only data I have easy access to is Greenwich’s, but I doubt it’s any different from the rest of the country. Here is the contract activity for the past three years – the numbers may have been greater or lower in other years, but you’ll see the trend remains steady.

Jan – March             April – June           July – September          October –  December

2012:     110                               159

2011:      133                               187                             97                                       115

2010:      151                                169                            97                                       88

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Cos Cob sale reported

31 Dartmouth Road, $1,622,550. I’m a little surprised at this price because it’s the highest ever achieved on Dartmouth, but it was newly renovated and there’s not that much good stuff on in this price range.

By the way, this one caught my eye because I’m looking for something maxing out at about $1.5, must have a bedroom/bath, either guest or master, on first floor, some yard and a large kitchen. This one might have been perfect, which is probably why I was a bit taken aback at its price, but if you have such a house – Cognewaugh or Cat Rock or even further up northern Greenwich, feel free to have your girl call mine – we’ll do lunch.

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Shaken, not stirred

Anonymous reader reminded me of the Onion’s videos – the one he mentioned, Obama visits a Denny’s, is fine, but this baby shaker spot is even better.

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