Friday, July 21, 2006

CAR: This Landing Will Be About as Soft as an 800 lb. Elephant Falling Off a Cliff

After proclaiming that we Californians have attained housing nirvana, Leslie Appleton-Young, chief economist of the California Association of Realtors, is now at a "loss for words" as to how best to describe the future of the housing market in California. Apparently the term "soft landing" is just too mild for her. As you will read in the quoted material, we will know how she is going to describe the future of the housing market when she 'gets her new term'. But until then, here's a suggestion for you Leslie: "hard landing". And if her about-face gets her in trouble? No worries as the CAR saw it all coming and have prepared their defenses.

The next thing you know David Lereah is going to come out and explain why this bubble is not a bubble or a balloon or a ship or any of the other feel-good euphemisms he is known for. What's the world coming to?

There's a lot of insightful and entertaining commentary about all this over at the Ben Jones blog.

Some choice quotes:
Leslie Appleton-Young is at a loss for words.

The chief economist of the California Assn. of Realtors has stopped using the term "soft landing" to describe the state's real estate market, saying she no longer feels comfortable with that mild label.

"Maybe we need something new. That's all I'm prepared to say," Appleton-Young said.

The shift in language comes as debate over the real estate market is intensifying. The long-awaited drop-off is happening, but there's little agreement about how brutal the landing will be.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said in congressional testimony Thursday that the national housing downturn so far appears orderly.

For real estate optimists, the phrase "soft landing" conveyed the soothing notion that the run-up in values over the last few years would be permanent. It wasn't a bubble, it was a new plateau.

"I'm sorry I ever made that comment [that the market was headed for a 'soft landing']," she said Thursday. "When I get my new term, I'll let you know."
The media, you see, are masters of denial as this video makes plain.


Blogger RMays said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Jul 21, 2006, 3:28:00 PM  
Blogger RMays said...

Okay, we could all see this coming years ago. We've been saying this for MONTHS.

How come you have to be "in the soup" before the experts say the same thing?

I mean, they waited and waited until literally NO HOMES are selling and people are dropping prices every three days and big home builders are saying "okay, we're in trouble" and THEN they say . . . "Okay, it doesn't look good for the real estate industry."

I mean that was evident back in August of 2005.

My question is: why not keep appearances and continue talking about the soft landing?

In my book, being an EXPERT in something is knowing your subject/industry so well you can accurately tell the world about the upcoming signs of upcoming things to come. You know, the future, the probabilities and the possibilities.

Not announce the thing when it gets into the middle of the room or right in your face.

I mean, an elephant standing in the middle of the room . . . even my untrained eye can tell -- it's a damn elephant.

Now an "EXPERT" on elephants should be able to tell me that the elephant is coming when he heard noise going through it's trunk a couple of blocks away . . . or from the THUMP, THUMP vibration on the ground as he walked toward us, or even as a few inches of the trunk appeared through the door. . .

You are NOT an expert by identifying what I already can see with my own eyes.

That is what the CAR official just did. Identified the elephant that we already know is there . . . because we can see. If that makes her an expert then baby where is my CAR application. I am in the wrong business and I should definitely get paid WAY more.

Where can one get a job application for CAR?

Jul 21, 2006, 3:37:00 PM  
Blogger fredtobik said...

Thanks for this post CPT.

Again anyone that listens to the media or OMG forbid a RE Agent for any sort of advice to determine a major life decision deserves the outcome or as I like to refer... Social Darwanism.

Jul 21, 2006, 3:50:00 PM  
Blogger Nozferatu said...

Experts in these industries exist to offer dis-information.

This whole game is to herd people into a particular direction that is necessary as a whole. These experts are in all types of fields...pyschology, human behavior, business, name it.

The objective is to keep people in this country calm, oblivious, and's far more important to the American public to talk about fuel prices and American Idle than it is about Lebanese children having their faces blown off.

It's far more important to talk about illegal immigration than talk about people's homes losing value.

I saw this total bitch driving like a complete asshole in an H2 Hummer with a plate "H2 Pride"...that about sums it up.

Jul 21, 2006, 11:27:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

When Bernanke was speaking this week, so many of the questions were housing related, the first time I heard politicians flat out admit how dependent our economy has been on real estate. I can't imagine this will be a pretty picture given suicide financing and the complete disconnect between incomes & home prices. And as appreciation flattens or goes negative, why on earth would anyone take on a huge mortgage?

Jul 22, 2006, 9:14:00 AM  
Blogger rejunkie said...

It's far more important to talk about illegal immigration than talk about people's homes losing value.

Jeez, someone took a detour to BitterLand. Both topics are worthy of discussion. And both profoundly affect our economy, which means these topics affect all of us. That's why blogs like these get a lot of eyeballs.

Jul 22, 2006, 11:02:00 PM  

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