Daily Archives: January 4, 2009

My relief for the horses was premature

I earlier posted that there was no sign of horses near George Lindemann Jr.’s house in Florida and that the poor creatures were therefore safe from his attentions. But I now fear that the house was misidentified and actually belonged to papa Lindemann, who sails, rather than kills horses. George Jr. lives right smack in the middle of the Palm Beach Polo Club – owners beware! You’d think that just as sex offenders aren’t allowed within 1000 yards of a schoolyard a horse killer wouldn’t be able to live around horses but apparently not. We can only hope that George proves to be a good neighbor.

Update: a search of the Palm County records reveals that, while George jr. did indeed own 11950 Maidstone Dive in the 1990s, he sold it to a William Peretti in 1998, just about the time Charisma’s death was coming back to haunt him. Interesting that so many references are still out there listing this as george’s residence but outdated info is still outdated. So where is George? Somewhere in Miami, to be sure – we’ll go look again.

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Commercial real estate next set of woes for banking industry?

That’s what the NYT thinks.  I don’t disagree, which surprises me.

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Commerce Secretary Down, Secretary of State to Follow?

Give money, get political favors. Something the Clintons have never done before – why’d they start now?

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So much for the post below

Franken to be declared winner in Minnesota. Thanks to anonymous for sending me the story and dampening my mood this evening. I just wish it weren’t true that we get the government we deserve.

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The world is saved!

My number one prediction for 2009, besides economic disaster, is that we will witness the end of the global warming hysteria. I expected that prediction would come true only near the end of the year but if the Huffington Post is already ridiculing Al Gore on the fourth day of January, this one bright spot seems to have arrived early. Not too soon, but early.

Hat tip: Bovina Bloviator 

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Unlike Fairfield Greenwich, Merrill had other sources of income

Merrill Lynch saw Madoff’s fraud, passed on investing.

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Old news but I missed it

From the Onion – perspective on the Obama victory.

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If they’re all on Wall Street, I guess that’s okay

Obama: 600,00 new government jobs. Hoo boy – is there anyone out there besides me who is dismayed to see us becoming Sweden?

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Fairfield Greenwich Group Update?

At least publicly, FGG has remained silent since December 16th when it expressed its shock that Bernie Madoff had screwed them. I notice on their website, however, that they have a “special message” for FGG investors. No date on that post but I assume it’s more recent than December 16th. Investors must sign in to read it and I’m no hacker but any readers who are or, what the heck, FGG investors, who want to share this special message with the world know where to send it.

Or perhaps Walter will just send us a copy.

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Bloomberg: Short term prospects for retail, manufacturing bleak

Oh well, there’s always the third quarter.

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Bernie’s victims restate their losses

Many of the institutions and individuals who lost money are recalculating those losses to account for the fact that much of what they “lost” were earnings that never existed in the first place. Probably not enough of a reduction to affect his prison sentence, though.

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More on Madoff – the gift that keeps on giving

Caroline Waxler at Business Sheets .com has some fascinating tidbits on Bernie’s personality – turns out he was an anal retentive, petty tyrant. Good – that should make retrieving his records easier, no? Is Walt sweating yet?

Best pun of the week (well, it is only Sunday) belongs to Ms. Waxler: “Bernie had champagne tastes on a Ponz scum’s budget.” 

  • He was obsessed with squares. Everything had to be square. So obsessed was he that his new video conferencing system was mounted on a semi-circular wall, not a square one that he would sit and stare at that wall all day.
    • ‘I can’t have that in my office,’ he declared. ‘I can’t live with it. It has to be square.’ The wall was duly remodelled. She was shocked that he would work in an elliptical Lipstick Building in New York—that was completely extraordinary,’ she says. ‘But it was the fashionable building to be in when he took it, so he had the interior completely squared off. 
  • According to Mrs Fenwick, Madoff was often accompanied by his interior designer, Susan Blumenfeld, president of New York firm SBI Design, who ‘even approved his wife’s clothes‘.
  • He always ate the same sandwich – cream cheese, smoked salmon and cucumber on brown bread.
  • He collected watches, mainly through vintage specialist George Somlo of Burlington Arcade in London’s Piccadilly, and bought wedding bands to match the colour and design of each watch.
  • ‘Bernie is the most anally retentive person I have ever met.’

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So who doesn’t?

Steel industry wants government bailout.

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Catch and release

The French (!) captured 19 pirates but “turned them over to the Somali government”. There is no Somali government. Pirates used to be hanged at sea by whoever caught them. If the law’s changed since then, we should change it back.

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And this is different from Hillary Clinton how?

Richardson withdraws as Commerce Secretary – “pay to play” grand jury investigation.

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Walter Noel and his southern relatives

Mum’s the word on South American losses. But this last paragraph might cause our Round Hill Road resident to hesitate before visiting his friends in Colombia:

“A lot of wealthy Colombians got burnt,” said one leading Bogota businessman. But to date, no Colombian investor has acknowledged losing money in the Madoff affair. Colombia has a history of kidnappings and businessmen are generally wary of talking about their wealth in the media.

How do you translate, “don’t get mad, get even?”

 

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Accidental Landlords

Homeowners can’t sell so they rent. Advantages and pitfalls outlined in this Hartford Current article.

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News Flash – residential real estate market’s not so good

I missed this Wall Street Journal on New Year’s day. The following gives a good taste of the article’s tone:

“I thought it would be a bad year,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Economy.com. “I didn’t think it was going to be a complete washout.”

And as bad as 2008 was, few are ready to say the worst is over. The troubles in the residential sector are expected to continue, while problems are just beginning for the other side of the real-estate market — office buildings, hotels, shopping malls and other commercial properties — as the recession starts to have an effect.

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Frugal traveller – They once offered me a chance to stay overnight for free

Boston’s  Charles Street jail is now the hot-spot “Liberty” (dig that irony) hotel – $355 a night and up, but the food’s probably better than it was.

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The surprising thing is that it sold at all

With apologies to Dr. Johnson. Business Sheets reports that a mega mansion in LA finally sold for $8,000,000, wich is a tad less than its original asking price of  $15 million but still, an $8 million sale is an $8 million sale. Some folks still have money and a few of them are willing to spend it. I haven’t seen this phenomenon in Greenwich in the past month but some waterfront did sell in November and it won’t leave me gobsmacked if we see properties in this price range going to contract soon. But notice the difference between asked and bid – buyers want bargains.

Update: Same phenomenon in New York City and same conclusion.

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