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Price cut

 

218 Clapboard Ridge Rd

218 Clapboard Ridge Rd

218 Clapboard Ridge is now priced at $17.5 million, down from $25 million. I suggested that this property might be a tad overpriced back when it came on last fall, and I voiced a little skepticism of the broker’s confidence that “I’m not concerned that this will sit on the market for long.” I’m sure I’ll be blamed for its failure to achieve its hoped-for price but really, I think the market does that all by itself.

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Two contracts reported

 

18 Porchuck

18 Porchuck

18 Porchuck, last asking $4.5 million after starting off at $9.5 million in June, 2012, has found a buyer.

And after just six days, 26 Byfield, $2.050 million, also has a contract. I wrote about this last week after its first open house and I’m not at all surprised that it went so quickly. Good pricing by its agent, Amanda Miller, and its owners.

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Price cut on Sawmill

 

12 Sawmill Ln

12 Sawmill Ln

12 Sawmill Lane is now asking $6.4 million, down from the $7.8 it originally asked a year ago. It’s a gracious old (1937) home, with beautiful grounds and close to town, but when you price, say, a $6 million home at $8 million, you kill interest. Tough call here because the usual $8 million home probably takes a year or so to find a buyer, so you don’t want to slash the price too soon, but if you’ve misjudged the proper price, that year waiting for a buyer is wasted, waiting for a buyer who isn’t going to appear.

It will be interesting to see whether that buyer shows up now. Unfortunately, after too long on the market many homes are shunned by buyers: “no one else has wanted it, why should I?” The answer is, “because no one wanted it at its original price; it’s well priced now”, but the stigma remains.

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Michelle-Heinemann update

Michelle-Marie Heinemann

Michelle-Marie Heinemann

The self-invented society moll seems intent to continue with her efforts to shut down this blog (since she’s harassing some commenters, I’ve offered to remove all mention of her, including comments, if she in turn will take down her defamatory websites devoted to libeling me – no response). It’s possible that the blog may be bounced by WordPress before anyone there responds to my inquiries. If so, I have reserved “chrisfountainblog.com” as a domain name, and I’ll just set up over there. It’s not up and running now, but if this site goes dark, look for there.

This will teach me to pul the wings off crazed flies.

More as developments warrant…

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Rhetorical question: is there anything Obama won’t deliberately lie about?

 

I won't be proud to be an American until I can get this shirt cleaned for two bucks

I won’t be proud to be an American until I can get this shirt cleaned for two bucks

Dry Cleaners object to Obama using them as an example of gender discrimination

America’s dry cleaners aren’t happy that President Obama used them as an example in remarks last week about the economic gap between the sexes.

They say the disparity in dry cleaning bills is more complex than the systemized discrimination Obama hinted at in his April 8 remarks about the so-called “pay gap” between the sexes.

The truth is that, as should be obvious to anyone with working eyes and/or the ability to touch, women’s clothes are made with different fabrics, tailored differently and are more delicate. That means it is the garment – not the person’s gender – that results in higher dry-cleaning bills, as Nora Nealis, executive director for the National Cleaners Association, wrote in a letter to Obama.

As an industry, dry cleaners do not charge more for a woman’s shirt than a man’s shirt, they charge more for a hand ironed shirt than they do a machine pressed shirt. If you check your own dry cleaning bill, you’ll find that YOU pay more for the laundering and finishing of your hand ironed tuxedo shirt, than you do for the automated processing of your everyday traditional dress shirt! The price is in the math as calculated by the labor required not the gender of the client!

Simple math. Hand ironing takes more time and requires more skill, and therefore costs the cleaner more to produce. Because it costs more to produce, he charges more for the work.

Dry cleaners’ automated finishing equipment was made to support men’s clothes. But just in case Obama or anyone else in his administration would ask why dry cleaners don’t invest in new equipment to accommodate women’s clothes, Nealis had the answer.

The number of simply cut (no frills like your tuxedo shirt) women’s shirts that are hanging in the nation’s closets are a small fraction of the number of simple men’s dress shirts. Like most male professionals, you wear a shirt most every day. That means you have lots of shirts and by extension your cleaner has lots of men’s shirts to launder and press for you, and others like you. By contrast, how often does the First Lady or your average American woman wear a simple, man-tailored shirt.

Of course, Obama and Miss Bossy don’t pay their own dry cleaning bills so his ignorance might be excused, but facts have nothing to do with his polemics. Interesting how trivial his ilk have made women’s rights, by the way: free birth control, subsidized dry cleaning are the next frontier of woman’s equality? On par with the right to own property and vote? Gracious.

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I tell you, this gay business has some real advantages

 

You ain't going nowhere, and neither am I

You ain’t going nowhere, and neither am I

Jamaican murderer can’t be deported from England because he suddenly realized he’s gay, judge rules.

An illegal immigrant who stabbed a 15-year-old  schoolboy to death less than a year after arriving in Britain cannot be deported because he claims to be gay, judges ruled yesterday.

The 29-year-old Jamaican was jailed for life aged 16 when he and another schoolboy knifed Abdul Maye to death over a £10 debt outside his school in east London.

A judge at the Old Bailey ordered that he be kicked out of Britain once he had served a minimum of eight years.

Judge Paul Focke told the thug, who cannot not be named for legal reasons: ‘You are a Jamaican national and within months of coming to this country you committed murder.

‘I am of the view that your continued presence in this country will be detrimental to its citizens.’

But yesterday, the Court of Appeal ruled that he could not be sent back to Jamaica because he could face degrading treatment for being homosexual that would breach his human rights.

IThe judge referred to Article Three in the Human Rights Act, which protects an individual from inhuman or degrading treatment.

Maybe they should send him here, where he can join the NYPD.

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We’re in the best of hands

 

To serve and protect our own

To serve and protect our own

Drunk driving, lesbian cop beats the crap out of her girlfriend and tosses her through a shop window.

[The girlfriend] Douglas, 38, tried to leave and hop in a taxi, but was turned away by the cabby because she was bleeding, the friend said.

When Douglas returned to Beauzile’s car to get her purse, the cop jumped out and started beating her, the friend said.

“She ran into her like a train with no brakes,” the friend said. “She just kept punching her.”

Beauzile then picked up Douglas and threw her into the window of Canal Furniture on Broadway near Walker Street, leaving a gaping hole.

“She picked her up and threw her into the glass,” the friend said. “She was like a raging bull.”

Both Beauzile and Douglas were injured by shards of glass.

“[Douglas] got kicked out of her shoes,” the friend added. “I put my hand up on her back and it was nothing but blood. She got stitches in her back.”

Beauzile was arrested and hauled off to the Fifth Precinct station house.

Douglas was treated at an area hospital for non-life-threatening injuries before she, too, was arrested and slapped with the same charges.

Police said Beauzile has not been charged with DWI, despite her friends’ claims that she was intoxicated.

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Now they tell us

 

Causes earthquakes too, no doubt

Causes earthquakes too, no doubt

The science isn’t settled – “experts” now warn that it’s Asian air pollution that’s causing  our severe weather, not CO2. I don’t believe anything these professional scammers preach, but doesn’t this put the lie to their claim that they have precise computer models telling them exactly the effect of CO2?

Yes it does.

(CNN) – A study finds that air pollution from Asia directly affects the storm pattern over the Pacific Ocean. Researchers further speculate that this could be driving freak winter weather in North America.

“The Pacific storm track is a major driving force over global weather patterns,” says the study’s lead author Yuan Wang, a post-doctorate fellow at the NASA U.S. Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

“The modulated storm track can be linked to abnormal weather behavior in the mid-latitudes of the Northern hemisphere, including U.S. and Canada.”

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He does this a lot

Obama bars press from his “personal moment of silence to commemorate the Boston Marathon bombing, but includes White House photographer so that we can all enjoy the so-private scene.  Next up: 15-hour harangues on national television.

So very sad

So very sad

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White House folds census bureau into the administration, with predictable results.

Three more years

Three more years

First came the phony unemployment count in the fall, 2012, revised upward only after the election. Now the Bureau has announced a new way of measuring health insurance coverage so there can be no comparison between pre-and-post Obama Care enactment.

Obama has politicized the IRS, the Department of Justice and now, the Census Bureau. He’s abdicated the rule of law by abusing his executive powers, and made the US the laughing stock of the world.

We’re living in a (bad) banana republic.

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Sweet irony

 

 

Distinguished Fellows, CUNY

Distinguished Fellows, CUNY

Paul Krugman accepts a $25,000-a-month gig to “help study income inequality”. No work required – for all I know, CUNY will arrange direct deposit for his pay check, so he won’t have to even show his face on campus.

 According to a formal offer letter obtained under New York’s Freedom of Information Law, CUNY intends to pay Krugman $225,000, or $25,000 per month (over two semesters), to “play a modest role in our public events” and “contribute to the build-up” of a new “inequality initiative.” It is not clear, and neither CUNY nor Krugman was able to explain, what “contribute to the build-up” entails.

It’s certainly not teaching. “You will not be expected to teach or supervise students,” the letter informs Professor Krugman, who replies: “I admit that I had to read it several times to be clear … it’s remarkably generous.” (After his first year, Krugman will be required to host a single seminar.)

The new professional class is comprised of poverty experts. You’d think someone in the South Bronx could opine on the study for less and help narrow, rather than grow, the income inequality gap.

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The compensation plague has spread across the pond

 

I'll give you splinters, you little squib!

I’ll give you splinters, you little squib!

British boy with too soft a butt hits pay dirt for picking up a splinter in his bum.

A schoolboy has received almost £3,000 compensation after getting a splinter in his bottom while sitting on a wooden bench in class.

The family of the unnamed youngster, who was seven at the time, successfully sued education chiefs over the ‘small injury’, which his parents claimed took four weeks to heal and might leave a permanent scar.

The boy, a pupil at Winterbourne Junior Boys’ School in Thornton Heath, south London, received £2,760 in compensation from Croydon Council, which is in charge of the school.

America used to be laughed at for our litigious culture; now we’re emulated.

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New price, old land listing on 70 Lower Cross Road

Screen Shot 2014-04-16 at 12.22.03 PM10 plus acres, now asking $3.5 million, down from last fall, when it asked $4.2.  I walked the property then, and it’s really very special. Lots of new growth that I’d clear because it’s overgrown the meadows, but very, very nice property. It’s across the street from Conyers, adjacent to the Babcock Property town park, and there are still a couple of deer hunting stands hanging, if that’s your thing (and if it isn’t, call me – we’ll talk pest control). I didn’t think $4.2 for ten good acres was crazy last fall; I’d assume you can now get the property for a million less, and if you want back country land at a decent price, here’s your chance.

Screen Shot 2014-04-16 at 12.28.05 PM

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The white elephant moves

 

Still some life in the old boy after all, eh what?

Still some life in the old boy after all, eh what?

11 Langhorne Lane, all 26,000 square feet of it, has sold, and sold for $17 million. I hadn’t thought there was still a market for this size home but I must not be hanging out with enough Russian oligarchs these days.

Antares built this and tried selling it for $35 million, unfinished. They eventually unloaded it for $13.750 million in 2008 to these sellers, who first put it back up for sale at $14.5 as is, then finished it and relisted it for $27,500. They didn’t get it, but $17 is still impressive. Lots of liens on this property, including a $150,000 “mortgage” to a painting contractor – I’ll bet that guy is the happiest of all to see this sale.

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New Listing in Old Greenwich, “water views”

 

8 E. Point Lane

8 E. Point Lane

8 E. Point Lane has resurfaced, now asking $4.295 million. I remember when this was new in 2006 and the builder asked $3.995 million. It struck me as overpriced then and the market must have agreed, because it didn’t sell. On the other hand, I liked the house itself very much and given the hike in prices in OG since 2006, perhaps it’s more in line with the market; we’ll see. Listing says it’s “FEMA Compliant”, which is reassuring – some parts of this neighborhood got hammered by Sandy, and you’d probably want to determine how this home fared during that storm.

From a historical perspective on prices, this was listed as a land sale in 2005 at $1.550 million and sold to this builder in a bidding war for $1.625. Pretty pricey, at the time, for a quarter-acre of non-waterfront land.  Today, not so much.

UPDATE: Just heard from the owner – absolutely no damage from the storm, which it rode out high and dry. He also sent along an extensive (very extensive) list of improvements upgrades made to the house since it was built. In all, it’s impressive. And the location – walk to the beach, great neighborhood – is superb. I’d certainly take a good look at it, if you’re in this price range, in Old Greenwich.

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And speaking of embarrassing photos …

My pal, Attorney Jeremy E. Kaye, skipped yesterday’s closing to go on vacation in Florida (WTF? During school children’s break?!) Every time he does this to me I try to find a suitable photograph of him in his travels so as to discourage him from abandoning his duties. This year (month’s – he’s skipping out of town a lot, lately) is here.

He's going to Disney World!

He’s going to Disney World!

 

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This would be discouraging, if I let it

The new puppy woke me just now (3:15 AM, early even for me) to go outside. It has snowed overnight. She doesn’t seem to mind, but I do.

Back to bed, perchance to dream of palm trees and white beaches.

UPDATE: I’m just puppy sitting for a friend. And since you’ve asked for a picture of the canine, I’ve tried to select one that will most embarrass that friend,let alone the dog. This should do it:

(Okay, not really)

(Okay, not really)

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Of course, if they survive pre-K, the poor kids have to attend public school

 

Superintendent Charles Maranzano: "Does this face make me look stupid?"

Superintendent Charles Maranzano: “Does this face make me look stupid?”

Bully cries “he’s pointing a gun, send him to juvie”, so they do.

This latest incident began as Glenn Meadow Middle School seventh grader Ethan Chaplin was holding a pencil with a pen cap on the end while in class. Accounts of how Ethan was holding or gestering with the writing implement differ, but school officials were alerted to the matter after a student sitting behind Ethan shouted, “He’s making gun motions, send him to juvie.”  According to News 12 New Jersey, Ethan contends he had been bullied by the same student earlier in the day.

Claiming they had no choice but to act on the taunt, school administrators removed Ethan from school and forced him to undergo a lengthy mental and physical evaluation before he could return.  Describing the evaluation to one news source, Ethan’s father, Michael Chaplin, stated, “The child was stripped, had to give blood samples (which caused him to pass out) and urine samples for of all things drug testing… . Then four hours later a social worker spoke to him for five minutes and cleared him.  Then an actual doctor came in and said the state was 100 percent incorrect in their procedure and this would not get him back in school.”

Following a public outcry, Vernon Township School District Superintendent Charles Maranzano defended the school district’s actions.  Maranzano told The Huffington Post, “When a student misbehaves or displays actions that are non-conforming or don’t meet our expectations, it causes us some concerns.”

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The best thing about politicians is that they never run out of ways to spend our money

 

Camillo tackles pre-k in search of his first diploma

Camillo tackles pre-k in search of his first diploma

Hartford wants to make taxpayers cough up $200 million for pre-K programs. For those of you who can do math as the result of attending Head Start, since Greenwich pays 10% of the state’s budget, that’ll be another $20 million from us, not that we’ll see the money.

Nor will we see the results; for all that pre-kindergarten programs would seem a logical way to get children headed toward learning,  no studies support that conclusion and in fact, those studies that have looked at it have found zero results. Here’s what the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reported after an extensive study of Head Start:

There is no measurable advantage to children in elementary school of having participated in Head Start.  Further, children attending Head Start remain far behind academically once they are in elementary school.  Head Start does not improve the school readiness of children from low-income families.

All of this is just another liberal do-good, feel-good program that accomplishes nothing except provide a source of patronage baby sitting jobs for inner-city mothers. And, like all such programs, after spending billions without result, no one reexamines the underlying hypothesis that justified the original spending – they just double down, like the crazed gamblers they are. Unfortunately, these people are playing with house money -our houses, our money.

Here are two responses from Greenwich officials – can you guess which is the professional bureaucrat and which is the Republican representative supposedly charged with protecting us from the Hartford predators? Neither can I.

“Connecticut’s elected leaders are to be applauded for increasing support for preschool education,” said Superintendent of Schools William McKersie. “While it is not yet clear how the initiative will directly affect Greenwich, all of us should be pleased that the state is getting behind an essential ingredient for academic success.”

Greenwich state Rep. Fred Camillo, R-151, a former high-school teacher, also expressed support for universal preschool.

“If you look at some of the statistics, if you don’t get kids early, and they start to drift and don’t have a good family background, what’s going to happen is it’s going to cost you later on,” he said. “I believe it’s needed; it’s just got to be done right.”

 

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In the “new” New York, this might actually pass

 

Dig we mustn't

Dig we mustn’t

City councilman wants to freeze demolition of all buildings 50-years and older (that would be anything built before the 1964 World’s Fair)  covering  80% of the building stock in NYC. (One) problem with the proposal: there aren’t nearly enough staffers to review applications already before the city’s Landmark’s Commission:

Items that are “calendared” have sat in the commission’s to-do box for decades. That effectively puts any development on these sites and any resolution on their landmark status in a perpetual holding pattern.

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