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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Nutcracker

I've never taken part in a "blog war" before and I don't really know what one looks like, but after witnessing the events over the past few days I'd say we're in the middle of one.

You might have seen Rain City Guide's recent post by Galen Ward, "There will never be a real estate bubble" and the comments that followed.

It appears that Galen posted the above article simply as a joke about the heat over Susan Ryan's post "Just Say No to Bubble Talk" post as well as others over on the Seattle PI-sponsored Seattle Real Estate Professionals blog.

Side Note: Notice how Susan Ryan's latest posts do not allow comments and contain very long images that scream "Get thee behind me, and much further down the page ye satanic bubblehead posts!"

Rain City's Galen e-mailed me, wanting to know why his post had irritated me so. I responded that I felt the blog appeared to be a REIC cheerleading forum (seems like a reasonable assessment if you take a gander at their authorized bloggers) My apologies to Galen for misinterpreting his post as potentially malicious.

Here is part of his response:

"My take on our blog is this: we have 2 tech people (myself and Robbie) who rarely talk about real estate specifics, a lawyer who talks about lawyer crap, Dustin who has posted one negative story in his life, and Ardell and SeattleEric."
I accept this and move on until this evening when I find this puff piece posted on Rain City. Ardell writes a completely benign article about the shocking truth of banks owning a large portion of our assets (unless you happen to be wealthy).

I noticed this quote right away:
"I was perusing The Tim's blog while writing something on my blog earlier today, and ran into the comments regarding King County median income and median home prices, again. I never seem to draw the same conclusions as other people."
She fails to link Tim's blog but does a nice job of linking her blog post (which takes aim at Tim's "In A Nutshell" post, which she apparently believes is poorly written and hard to understand) as a "oh by the way".

My point is this: If the "Rain City Guide" is not a Real Estate Cheerleading blog, then why is Ms. Ardell DellaLoggia allowed to use it as a pulpit?

When I first moved to Seattle, the Rain City Guide was the first blog I came across. "Great resource!" I thought. I'm just a tad upset because I know how many hits this site gets.

How many people with homeowner envy are reading these articles? How many will be pushed into Greater Fooldom after reading it? Would you be interested in hiring Ardell as your realtor when you are ready to enter the housing market?

Me, not so much.

Note: If you do choose to post on one of the above mentioned blogs, please be civil and think your arguments through all the way. I realize it can be difficult, however it won't go far in helping persuade potential home buyers from understanding our position. Thanks ;)

(Ardell DellaLoggia, Rain City Guide, 10-10-2006)
(Galen Ward, Rain City Guide, 10-09-2006)
(Susan Ryan, Seattle Real Estate Professionals, 10-08-2006)

45 comments:

synthetik said...

FYI, Ardell has removed the comment I posted on her blog. No surprise there.

While it wasn't inflammatory, I certainly didn't agree with her point of view.

dalas said...

"Homeowner from 1991-2003. I’ve been self employed most my life in technology and sales related fields. I began studying real estate and economics heavily in 2003. I’m anonymous for obvious reasons - I own a business and discussing politics, religion and a pending economic collapse is not good business."

Question is, why did you start renting in 2003. Having studied real estate in 2003 heavily, why didn't you buy purchase or invest any properties since 2003, during an unprecedented real estate boom and lowest interest rate in history...Obviously you have failed in your research, and it would appear that you are bitter for missing such an obvious investment opportunity.

I love how you just came out and admitted that you knew nothing back in 2003. With that said, why would any of us respect your opinions on current market trend?

Not trying to pick a fight, but it's pretty obvious to me that your opinions are worth less than what you somehow believe them to be.

MisterBubble said...

Troll alert!

At the risk of feeding it, I'll give my own answer to the question: I didn't buy in 2003 because the local housing bubble was obvious, even then. I knew the market was irrationally exuberant when I met a 19-year-old girl who was "investing" in not one, but TWO houses (and yes, that was late 2003).

Did I "miss out" on the "unprcedented real estate boom"? I guess you could say that. But when the bubble goes *pop*, I'm not the guy who will be liquidating his assets in bankruptcy court to pay down an underwater suicide mortgage.

Remember, folks: the dot-bomb explosion was littered with the corpses of investors who didn't want to "miss out".

synthetik said...

>why did you start renting in 2003

My wife and I moved from Florida to California in 2003. As a Cali. girl she couldn't stand florida and the redneck contingent - and I couldnt' blame her for that. She graduated and we moved - without jobs. So I didn't think it would be prudent to buy at the time. My technology business had failed, so we moved to Cali with what was left.

Going from a $350,000 home in Florida to California doesn't buy you much.

I probably would have purchased at that time had I had the money and knowledge of future income. It's sheer dumb luck that I didn't purchase and become a GF/FB.

While I did read books by Kiyosaki initially, I turned to other books such as Campbell's "Timing The Real Estate Market" (Endorsed by Fleckenstein). The book describes in great deal 40% RE haircut San diego took around 1990. I read that one in early 2004.

>respect your opinions

I'm not sure I follow you, but I'm sure you have a pair of eyes and are coming to the same grim conclusions we are.

I certainly don't profess to know anything. Go back and look at other posts I have made... I freely admit I am no economic genius.

My grandfather lived through the depression and taught me how to save. He reinforced the idea that I MUST pay off my house. I did that in 5 years by age 26 -- quite possibly the single biggest financial mistake of my life (invested in Mr. Market in the tech stocks/products I worked with every day during 1991-2000 would have yielded $2.5M+) But would I have been able to get out in time? (My accountant warned me in late March 2000 about the impending collapse, but I didn't have much $ in there anyway)

I'm learning more every day... My interest in econ has increased because I have already lost everything once... I've gained it back and then some - and want to preserve that equity.

I am in no way bitter. My anger is simply a direct result of the lies and BS being spewed by RE shills.

I guess it's hard to understand why I'd spend so much time doing so. I'm getting an education while at the same time potentially helping people avoid bankruptcy.

Amit D. Chaudhary said...

It is an attempt at link baiting, she referred to the ST SREP's earlier post with a link to search engine journal. If it is gone from the website, check in some RSS reader like bloglines\google reader.

On another note, Real Estate journal says

Seattle sees record drop in price



Amit

Richard said...

From reading Ardell's blog entries, it appears she's not only a Realtor, but also bought a high-end fixer last summer using 100% (+?) financing.

The Tim said...

I love Ardell's little snipe on my age, implying that I'm a child. This is the second time now that Ardell has attempted to antagonize and insult me. Honestly, it's not worth my time to bother with such petty nonsense. We'll find out who is right soon enough.

biliruben said...

I think you were off-base with Galen, Synth.

He was ragging on Susan. I think you missed the joke.

synthetik said...

How valid is a blog when commentors who have a differing opinion are silenced?

After Post #95, where I supposedly failed to predict the market (how is getting out in 2003 failing to predict the market?) I attempted to explain myself reasonably. Those posts as well as others have been deleted.

I'm assuming anyone that disagrees where they do not have an effective counter argument, they simply silence.

synthetik said...

I might be off base about Galen, which is why I said "in jest"; however the post today is about the hypocrisy of the Rain City Guide.

It's misleading people... isn't that why we're doing this - to help people from making disasterous mistakes?

If I'm wrong I'll gladly take the post down.

biliruben said...

I suppose. It's just a matter of tactics.

I am completely on the bubble band-wagon, and I ended up feeling sorry for him. He was making a joke sympathetic to your cause, and he didn't get much slack.

I don't know. I haven't really read RCG, but I actually found that particular post clever and funny.

If we come off as fanatical nut-jobs (not you, but some of the mob of HP'ers hitting Susan, certainly) with no sense subtlety, we are marginalized, and the message is easier to dismiss.

Just my two-cents.

synthetik said...

Peter Taylor seems to sum it up well in post #20.

"Galen’s call for link baiting really strikes me as…unprofessional? I don’t know if you think you’re helping yourselves, but if you derive some morbid pleasure from trolling you’d be best to do it in an area other than your line of business.

If Susan Ryan was truly link baiting, well, I have to say that as a potential customer of her services that there is no way in hell I’d ever want her acting as my agent in any manner. Her posts are frequently juvenile and her responses to comments reveal a less than flattering attitude when things get rough. Same with you Eric - your willingness to engage in pointless arguments lead me to believe you’re someone with whom I’d never want to have business dealings. If you get so wound up over the small stuff, what happens when the big stuff goes wrong? Do you retreat into the comfort of ad homimen arguments when that happens also?

If you people are professionals, act professional. Link baiting is something that 12 year olds do for attention."

I may have missed the point or the joke, this is true. Still, I'm not sure how many new, potential home buyers to a post that reads "There will never be a housing bubble" would have gotten it either.

Eleua said...

This should come as no surprise that RCG might be a wee bit intolerant of dissenting opinions.

I've been an adult for over half my life, and in that time I have noticed that "those that talk - don't." If a forum claims to be all open-minded, progressive, and erudite, you can bet it is a few narrow-minded hacks that can't stand for anyone not to ratify their preconceived notions.

I had fun on my time at RCG, even if they hated me. I'm a hockey fan, and I'll pass on a game of gentleman's pond hockey in lieu of opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, with fixed bayonettes and no quarter shown. Getting hit is half the fun.

For now, the bubble argument is an uphill one. Price action and recent history is on the 'pom-pom' side. Fundamentals are on ours. You can't go into the future to retrieve data about the future, but you can go into the past to retrieve data about the past. Meshugy has made a career of this on this fourm.

My guess is the regulars at RCG look to the ever increasing price of real estate as some ratification of just how hip-n-cool Seattle is. I still have to look over that article about how gay culture attracts the best in computer software employees.

For me, and I assume most of you, I like the PNW. It is part of me. I just don't think that rising prices are needed for me to feel justified in moving back here from Flyover Country. For months, SeattleBubble dealt with the misunderstanding surrounding our identification of a bubble with people assuming we hated it here.

My guess is most of us on SB are left-of-center when it comes to politics. Fine by me. I'm comfortable around liberals, provided they don't approach every problem from a political point-of-view. My guess is the liberals on RCG can't get past their bias.

Rising property prices mean people want to be here (Seattle).

Lower property prices mean people don't want to be there (Dallas).

People want to be around a liberal city, therefore liberalism is desireable. People don't want to be around a conservative city, becasue being a conservative sucks.

IF you posit that prices will fall in Seattle, you are saying that people will not want to be here, and therefore that shows that people might not like being liberal.

Given that I am liberal, and I am not secure with my convictions and place in the cosmos, you are attacking me. Therefore, I will flame/silence you.


I know that might be a stretch, but that is the tone that seems to be set at RCG.

For the record, I don't care either way. Liberals like urban life, and that's great. I don't live in the urban area, and that works for me. I don't see this as a cultural issue (as RCG seems to), but see it as an economic one. I don't think that all liberals are close minded - just those that have no other identification in life. The same works for conservatives.

I prefer an intelligent discussion with someone I disagree with, rather than a nod-fest with someone that sees things the way I do.

They keep asking for something that is impossible to deliver - proof of a future event. Property in Seattle may increase beyond the current 3.6 sigma from normal price/income. I doubt it, but it may. Given that anything is possible (but not probable or plausable), I can't prove my thesis.

I keep referring to the NAZ bubble as a field guide to this bubble. That may be foolish, but the mindset of the participants is exaclty the same, and the underlying price action is eerily similar. So, I am identifying this in the same terms as the NAZ was IDed back in the day.

Am I wrong? Perhaps, but they can't prove it anymore than I can prove that I am correct.

RCG was a fun diversion, but is probably a waste of time.

plymster said...

Synthetik, it's interesting to read your history. I think a lot of people suffered a few setbacks in the latest recession. Some of us learned caution, but most did not.

Some folks frequently complain about how people snipe from the cover of anonymity. Personally, I don't need to know your name. It's good enough to know your background and perspective. You, Tim, S Crow, Eleua, and a handful of others are very good about this sort of disclosure (who is dalas, and what makes his opinions worth anything?).

Tracking a history of posts provides me with a better feeling of whom I can trust to be candid and intelligent. For this reason, I don't trust most Realtors (not all - 4-percent guy, Trevor Smith, seems fairly candid, for example).

Does that mean that Synthetik, Tim, Eleua, Dukes, Peckhammer, Matthew, Misterbubble, and Biliruben don't bloviate from time to time? Sure they do; who doesn't? But I get far more interesting information from them, than I do from the Realtor community.

As far as Susan Ryan's closed blog, who can blame her. She's just trying to post her views and promote herself as a credible expert on RE. If you disagree with her arguments, or find them lacking substance, send her a reasonably respectful comment or question. There's no reason to organize a flame-war against her.

As far as Ardell is concerned, her post "Do the Banks Own Seattle" struck me as a bit cautionary. Most of Seattle RE is %70-90 debt. Even at the high end (families that are loaded and/or have lived there for generations) 50% of the RE is debt. If prices go down by 20%, then most of Seattle is underwater, and the rich suddenly lose a large chunk of their cash.

Ardell's tone is fairly condescending, and I don't see the relevance of Tim's age, but then, she's just a JBAR (Jealous, bitter, aging Realtor).

Honestly, Tim, why are you threatened by someone who uses an out-of-focus Glamour Shot on her posts.

plymster said...

Biliruben has a point. It can be irritating to read the baiting comments of some posters, and some of the outright audacity, lies, and cherry-picking-of-data-passed-off-as-analysis of the REIC can really get your blood up. But sinking to their level does you a disservice. The hacks, shills, and crap-flinging monkeys at RCG may not agree with you, but I think most critical-thinking people respect your opinions and analyses.

I know it's sad for you guys who started at RCG and have had to watch it devolve, but it's beyond your control. I think Eleua said it best: RCG was a fun diversion, but is probably a waste of time.

The Tim said...

Honestly, Tim, why are you threatened by someone who uses an out-of-focus Glamour Shot on her posts.

I'm not. That's my point. It's not worth my time.

Seattle Eric said...

Synthetik -

You make a good point. I'm too easily drawn into useless conversation and ideology. Let's not kid ourselves, the ones who are making money from either perspective are not wasting their time blogging. These are echo chambers. I don't mean that to be pejorative; rather, even if there are shouting matches between the two sides, it's only these two sides of the blogging community that pay any attention to it.

There are real estate investors making lots of money in ways that will continue to work in a down market. They're busy making money; they don't have time to blog, nor care to, since there is nothing new here.

On the flip side, there are others who are invested in real estate based on their belief that the bubble will burst and the market will fall. They are not here either. There is nothing to learn on either side here.

So who is reading? Us! Sure, there are others who pop into these blogs for a quick read, but they could care less for all the sniping back and forth between all these egos! They understand politics. They know all too well that both sides are too entrenched to give an inch ideologically.

I need to extract myself from this. I've actually asked Dustin to pull down my image from RCG, because honestly, I don't see enough upside to me to continue blogging regularly.

However, my god damned ego gets in the way and posts from time to time. I like to write and I have these delusions that my words will have an impact.

Nothing any of us say on these blogs have an impact beyond our respective echo chambers. Do you think Rush Limbaugh has any legitimacy outside of the Dittohead nation? Or Al Franken will change minds on the right? Hell no. It's all about tribalizing, closing ranks and community.

I can tell that you all sincerely respect each other. What do you have in common? Your view of the bubble. It's a great community, but it's a community exclusive of those who don't buy into your beliefs. And that's fine. RCG is the same way, but in different ways.

I need to hear a balanced view of where the housing market is headed. I can't get that from either side. I will simply need to parse through data and straight news accounts to get more information.

As I wrote Tim, I suggested a blog where both sides present their arguments as the why there will/won't be a bubble, and then have a debate. Tim showed interest, and I appreciate that, but it was clear that blogs are not about balance...they are about finding the moral highground, and presuming it belongs to whatever side one chooses.

I suppose if I had thick enough skin, none of this would bother me. But I don't, and it does.

But I won't be missed by anyone. I would only miss someone or be missed if I knew them personally. That's impossible on a blog, where anonymity reigns.

What's sad is that the vast majority of those who blog have kids, wives, parents who love them, and who see them as strong and as someone to be proud of, yet we all - to a certain degree - get so upset by words from anonymous people, that we feel we have to defend our own anonymous selves, and throw it back.

Good luck all.

Seattle Eric out.

Lake Hills Renter said...

SeattleEric said: Nothing any of us say on these blogs have an impact beyond our respective echo chambers.

I wouldn't say that. I came into the housing market about a year ago and knew nothing about it. Through reading this and several other blogs, both for and against a housing bubble, I was able to dig through the politics and mud to get to real data and analysis. I learned a ton about the housing industry and market fundamentals, none of which I knew before and most of which I learned from people on these blogs. If your posts are full of useful information and respectful, they can make a difference, even if people disagree with you. Your posts here have been both, so as far as I'm concerned, you're always welcome here.

LHR

Dukes said...

Dukes...a bloviator? ...surely you jest Plymster...

I guess I can get up on a high horse once in awhile, but only when I see ridiculously foolish behavior that will result in problems...like leveraging your primary residence into ... say ... three more 'investment' houses.

As some of you may have gathered by now I have been active in investing for quite some time and I have taken my lumps as others have, but I have learned well from them. It is quite necessary for individuals to have an exit strategy planned for themselves, that is why I don't like real estate as an investment.

Pulling the trigger, so to speak, is exceedingly difficult in a flat to down market as millions across the U.S. are now finding out. I, for one, will be content when a normal middle class working family can buy a house without killing themselves, I do think we will see this in the next couple of years.

redmondjp said...

seattle eric said: But I won't be missed by anyone. I would only miss someone or be missed if I knew them personally.

I respectfully disagree with you, Eric. I admire you for your guts and courage to 'hang it all out there' (so to speak) for the world to see with respect to your RE investments. I think it is really valuable to all sides (bubble, no bubble, soft landing) of the RE blogging community, regardless of the level of success or failure that you achieve. It says "I'm a real person, here's what I'm doing, and here's how it's working for me." This is a lot stronger evidence of the current RE situation than much of the andecotal information posted (no judgement here on that either, just my $.02).

I hope that you continue to share your experiences (esp. with your two houses currently on the market) with us. This is by far the best indicator of what is really going on out there in the marketplace (the proverbial canary in the coal mine). I do wish you the best in selling, and hope you can come out OK on these properties.

synthetik said...

enrico:

I dont' have time for a long reply (yeah, whew, right), however:

1. If it weren't for Prof. Piggington's blog in San Diego I wouldn't have clued in to this mess.

2. Tim, how many unique hits are you getting now per month? 30-50K?

3. I think it's a fallacy to think that "preaching to the choir" doesn't work. It's important to continue to discuss issues and to mobilize the base... apathy gets you nowhere.

4. RCG and SeattlePI blogs ARE media and are widely read. If we don't challenge them on their assertions, who will?

I do wish you well and hope you're able to come out of your situation in a positive way.

The Tim said...

Tim, how many unique hits are you getting now per month? 30-50K?

See for yourself. We might break 40,000 this month.

synthetik said...

Wah, it says I don't have permission. I created an account... Do I need to create my own stat counter?

Signed,
Clueless

EconExchange said...

"I need to hear a balanced view of where the housing market is headed. I can't get that from either side. I will simply need to parse through data and straight news accounts to get more information."

No better way then parsing through the data....but that is what good blogs are for. They help you find that data. But as far as 'straight' news accounts? Good luck. Each account has an obvious slant...wether known or unknown to the reporter (as is often the case because they are just trying to write a story and not nessesarily understand the subject they are writing about). Why don't you just find some good blogs on each side and visit EACH of them. Good blogs should lead you to good information...then decide for yourself. I visit blogs that don't agree with the bubble...however, I have determined that they hardly have any information to back them. Thus why I came to my conclusion.

S Crow said...

Eric -

I've been thinking ALL day long about similar thoughts you have. I'm going to post on it at RCG because I think it's very relevant.

Do not pull the plug on your perspectives.

YOU ARE THE MARKET. Everyone on this blog is a homeowner, past homeowner or future homeowner.

Take this for a little perspective:

I still own Homegrocer.com.

biliruben said...

I started looking at the data back in 2003, and it scared the bejessus out of me.

There was no one around to talk to about it back then, and try to get some reassurance that I wouldn't lose my shirt if I bought a house. I made a few blog posts about the local Seattle situation (I can point you to one if you are interested), and decided to buy much less of a house than I could afford, to hedge my bets.

More recently, as it became obvious that the RE market had topped, I shorted a few stocks as a further hedge.

But I think I'm the exception rather than the rule. Most don't know to ask the questions, much less who to ask and where to find the data.

Blogs like this are invaluable.

The Tim said...

Wah, it says I don't have permission. I created an account... Do I need to create my own stat counter?

Okay, try this, then click "monthly" above the chart.

PepeDaniels said...

A few thoughts on the "balance" on the board and it's value.

I was living in S. Florida two years ago and it was unreal at times. RE was all people were talking about and all the money they were going to make. It all seemed wildly out of balance to me on instincts alone - Synthetik, you were in Florida awhile so you may remember this as well right?

Anyway, people who had no business, I mean no business were scrambling like I can't recall to get into the market. Rent was rising rapidly in the area. I don't even recall it being called a bubble at that point? I found the housingbuggle blogspot and eventually this site.

Everyone's entitled to their own opinion and evaluation of the situation as it goes on of course. For myself, however, the two blogs have been a source of sanity really. The "echo chamber" was out there not in the two blogs (housingbubble & here).

While clearly you're likely to take some roasting in here if you're a bull I doubt the majority would turn their back on good new data that was pointing in a different direction.

The fact that there are a number of good blogs on many different subjects is a welcome alternative to mainstream media and source of other information to further educate myself....it's the best the net has to offer I think.

Not to get too overly dramatic but frankly it gives me hope that we can do better as people when I see people discussing things from their own point of view and not waiting for others, the media, government etc. to tell them how to think.

synthetik said...

>you were in Florida

Yes, but it wasn't that noticeable -- at least in late 2002 and early 2003. I remember a lot of building going on.

I went back to see my family and friends over a year ago and there was a lot of talk about "my house/condo is up by X"!

I mentioned the coming RE crash to everyone but there were no takers.

As I've said before, San Diego was brimming with RE crazy chatter during mid 2003 onward. The first week I arrived, I opened a bank account at UBOC. "So.... you guys livin' downtown?" "yeah? are you going to buy one of those awesome condos?? Better get in while they're hot"

Then 2004 was all about Vegas and Arizona.

Not much different than 1998-99: "So... did ja buy any Citrix or Cisco this week??"

synthetik said...

>who is dalas

dalas is salad spelled backwards. Very creative.

Today was 10-11-6, which is 9-11-01 backwards. And a plane crashed in NYC today... hrm... ;P

synthetik said...

SEAeric sayeth "There are real estate investors making lots of money in ways that will continue to work in a down market."

You are correct. They are busy shorting the bejesus out of stocks related to the housing industry.

PepeDaniels said...

synthetick saidI mentioned the coming RE crash to everyone but there were no takers.

Yeah, a couple of years ago now, it was impossible to have a discussion about it. I advised a friend of mine not to buy in Ft. Lauderdale. I said wait, hold your money it's too hot etc.....

She bought 18 months ago and now hates it for any number of reasons I mentioned. She's thinking of selling - I think she's gonna take a bath on it at this point. I'm embarrassed to say, I'll probably zillow the address and watch the car wreck in motion there......

Dustin said...

synthetik clearly wants to continue the conversation Galen began over on RCG, which is an inappropriate place to continue ranting on a subject that feels tired on that blog... However, synthetik did take the time to continue commenting, so my hope is that someone here will find it valuable.

synthetik most recent comment on RCG (that were removed by me) were:

"For the record, I didn’t call her a liar. I believe most of my posts are well reasoned through and i certainly don’t curse on other blogs."

"Anyway, I do apologize for not understanding the tone of Galen’s post. I do not appreciate being censored for having a different opinion."

"On www.seattlebubble.com, Tim would never delete a post – "

I'm assuming it is okay for me to continue the conversation here as well... if not, please feel free to delete my comments.

In the first paragraph, synthetik says: "For the record, I didn’t call her a liar." However, in the comment Ardell is likely discussing, synthetik said: "I wouldn’t be here if lies weren’t being uttered." I think it is reasonable for Ardell to interpret this as synthetik calling her a liar.

Also in the first paragraph, synthetik says: "I believe most of my posts are well reasoned through and i certainly don’t curse on other blogs."

I won't comment on the "well reasoned" part because that is very subjective, but I would like to note that on the same thread, synthetic said: "wtf is going on". I let this comment stand on the site hoping it would help calm synthetic down despite the fact it stands for "what the f**k", which clearly is a curse and inappropriate on RCG.

In terms of the 2nd paragraph, I can only agree with you that you didn't understand the tone of Galen post. Galen was clearly trying to show the ridiculousness of Susan's post, but you (mistakenly) tried to lump him in with all the other "evil" real estate agents of the world. I hope that next time you will try to read the text before commenting so that your comments can be "well reasoned".

In the third paragraph, you state "Tim would never delete a post". While I'll admit that I haven't followed the Seattle Bubble close enough to know if he has ever deleted a comment (I'm assuming you don't really mean "post"), I do know that he includes "the rules" on every post that clearly state the Seattle Bubble blog "is a dictatorship, not a democracy" and that he reserves the right to delete any comment that he feels is inappropriate. In light of Tim's attitude toward comments, I think it is a little disingenuous to say that he *would* never delete a comment.

Ardell DellaLoggia said...

Dustin,

The direct "you are a liar" was a comment posted on my blog, shortly after the comment you quote on RCG. It was that last one on my blog that made me decide to delete them both, and not the one on RCG.
Just a clarification.

Had he quoted something from the article and said, This xxx is a lie, I would have reponded. But simply saying I am a liar, without pointing to "a lie" in the text of the article, is just a cheap shot.

Dustin said...

Gotha!

The Tim said...

Ardell,

I guess you know a thing or two about cheap shots.

So "that sums it up" may make a whole lot of sense to a 20 year old...but not to an adult who thinks past today's monthly housing payment and factors in the rising cost of the land's value.

synthetik said...

>synthetik clearly wants to continue the conversation Galen began over on RCG,

No - that's just not the case. I posted that last comment in my own defense. Every other time I tried commenting, it was censored.

You blocked my IP -- I have several IP's here, so I posted that response in my defense.

I didn't call her a liar. She may be uttering lies, but she believes them; as do most realtors.

synthetik said...

>but I would like to note that on the same thread, synthetic said: "wtf is going on".

I did post that as a test. All my other posts didn't make it and I couldn't figure out the patteron. Obviously you were sitting there deleting them and then decided to leave that one up.

I thought maybe it had something to do with my formatting.

Someone was asking for "proof" and I was attempting to post links.

Again, you are censoring when someone disagrees with your opinion - that's obvious.

synthetik said...

Ardell,

Sorry, I didn't call you a liar. You had been deleting posts of everyone on your blog all day yesterday.

It's obvious you do not have the ability to successfully discuss your point of view, so the only alternative is to remove the post. It's interesting that out of the 8 or 9 comments on your blog, only 2 are from someone other than yourself.

I'm not sure there are any readers of your blog, so I suppose a censor of it is no big deal.

All I set out to do was expose you and RCG as the fraud that it is. If Galen tells me that the blog is not a RE Cheerleading forum, and I see obvious evidence that it is, I'm going to point that out.

Again, it's important to note that RCG is a place where someone that's new to Seattle might go to find information. If they are being told that Owning somehow still makes more sense than renting, that might put them over the top in terms of making that purchasing decision.

Dustin said...

synthetik,

You've already admitted that you have trouble understanding how to interpret the written word and you've done a wonderful job highlighting this fact with your latest comment.

As I clearly explained on the thread, at the time of your "wtf" comment, I was not censoring you at all... My spam filter, Akismet, decided that your posts were spam after you posted a bunch of links in one of your comments. As soon as I noticed this, I immediately marked them as "not spam" and allowed them to go live in the comments section. My guess is that they were in moderation for all of 15 minutes. No one was waiting around deleting your comments at that point.

I tried my best to give you a platform to speak your mind, but when I finally decided that you had no intention of adding to a valuable discussion, I'll happily awknowledge that I began deleting your comments.

Apparently, you have trouble understanding a reasoned argument, but I'll summarize my previous comment because it exemplifies the reason that I began deleting your posts.

In one comment, you managed to make two false statements (lies!), acknowledge that you have trouble interpreting articles, and not even know the policy of the blog you are a contributor on.

It is because you have trouble communicating in a meaningful way that I deleted your comments.

synthetik said...

Just as there are inconvenient truths in terms of Realtors (housing will crash) and the American consumer (manmade burning of fossil fuels creates global warming); there are convenient untruths in terms of future homeowners hell bent on owning.

"Real Estate always goes up"

"Buy now or be priced out forever"

"You'll be able to afford it."

"No problem, you can just refinance into a fixed rate later"

synthetik said...

Why don't we cut the BS and get down to the real question.

Dustin... what funtion does your blog perform?

The Tim said...

Guys,

No offense, but I don't see how this discussion is adding anything useful for the readers of this blog. What I think Synthetik meant about me deleting comments is that I do not delete comments solely because I disagree with them, and that is correct. I don't plan to delete the comments here, but I would prefer that you take the discussion somewhere else.

Exchange emails, go out and talk out your differences over a drink, whatever, just please take it somewhere else.

Thanks.

Dustin said...

synthetik,

Once again, I'm having a really hard time following your logic. I could be wrong, but I sincerely doubt you will find one RCG contributor making the statements:

"Real Estate always goes up"
"Buy now or be priced out forever"
"You'll be able to afford it."
"No problem, you can just refinance into a fixed rate later"

And if they did, I can almost guarantee that such a comment would be challenged by other contributors (like myself!). I've gotten to know each and every contributor well, and I feel safe in saying that none of the contributors follows that train of thought. Maybe our position is too nuanced for you and instead you wish we only kept repeating "the sky is falling!"

What purpose do we serve? To provide a healthy discussion about real estate that would help answer questions people are asking about both the Seattle area and the industry as a whole.

Maybe you think that by discussion commissions (which we do on a regular basis), we are going overboard on promoting people to buy homes. In reality, I can tell you that I get much more slack from the industry insiders than you have given me because our contributors have constantly pushed the discussion on the status quo of commissions.

In looking over recent RCG posts, we discussed (1) new commission structure experiment by one of the contributors, (2) analysis on down payment amount by income level, (3) interesting new map widget that gives neighborhood valuations at the zip code level, (4) a fun story about one man's experience with lowing the height of his house, (5) an article by another blogger where the author (Galen) laughs at "one crazy statement" made by another blogger, (6) a discussion on the applicability of the "wisdom of crowds" as it relates to home buying, (7) commentary on a new social networking site, (8) my comments on a blogging seminar that I gave with a contributor to 200+ attendees, (9) an article about the potential for others to "hijack listings" and (10) an article by one contributor where she describes the process she has gone through in trying to end the status quo of the 6% commission.

Not all of these articles are great, but in general, I think the team of contributors instinctively know that our purpose is to allow for a lively discussion on a variety of real estate topics. Despite the fact that I'd love to have more discussions on the bubble, we do not because (1) a site with agent contributors will never have credibility in talking about the bubble and (2) there are other wonderful resources where people document and discuss the bubble phenomena in detail.

Dustin said...

Tim,

I just noticed your comment after I hit publish... I can completely understand how you would feel like this conversation is not productive on your site as well!

Best.