Thursday, September 11, 2008

bing bang and the burning ring of fire

Yesterday, they fired up the HADRON super collider in Switzerland. There had been some consternation that they might create a black hole that would swallow up the Earth, and all of us with it. Reportedly, no black hole was created, and so we are all safe...except for RE "investors".

Urban real estate values set to plunge, UBC expert forecasts. Oops. I went down the memory hole because I thought that I remembered that Tsur Somerville was a pumper, in denial. I was wrong about that, this is what I found him saying in 2005:
"It is an issue for the person who says real estate is great and I'm selling all my stocks and buying real estate in the Lower Mainland," said Somerville. "For that person, it's a problem."

And while Somerville is reluctant to make exact predictions about when Vancouver's hot housing market might begin to cool, he can't help himself from making just one.

"You'll know when the market has hit its peak on the day that I buy a house," he said.
I wonder if Somerville has bought, he must have, because we have peaked, and are heading down into a dark hole, perhaps even a Black Hole.

The stock markets are flopping around like a beached cod fish; TSX down almost 1500 points in a week, and then bouncing up by 350 points yesterday. Can you spell v-o-l-a-t-i-l-e? Oil still sinking, even as OPEC cuts production. I guess demand for oil is like demand for housing - fickle, and not nearly as strong as people have claimed. I read again yesterday that the oil prices were driven up by speculators. Hmm. Sounds familiar. I don't know about you, but it irks me that speculators make piles of cash off of our backs, and we pay for it. What a tangled web. Burn babies, burn.

Politics this week? That could be a whole, new blog, but it has been fascinating. I can't wait for the 15th of October, just please, please, let us not have a majority Conservative government...though that would accelerate a return to "fundamentals" (and that is an intended pun, even if it is facile).

I heard talk on CBC yesterday of condohype, and they were quite tickled by our friend's writings - describing them as "very funny". Congratulations on receiving such recognition, condohype! I did not catch the whole piece unfortunately (li'l solipsist keeps me hopping, and has a voice larger than the CBC's). It is great to hear the MSM finally helping us bring down the market.

Things have been spotty here vis-a-vis ideas, and posting, and I sense that I am gradually fading away. I hope to be here still to remark on the trough, and to write about a purchase, and the renovations that will ensue, but we will see - unless, of course, the Hadron collider did create a black hole that they have not reported (don't want to panic anyone!), and we are all just goo on a shrinking planet. Kind of the opposite of "making more land"...


Anonymous said...

Although I don't post comments, I read your blog every day! I've moved temporarily from Nanaimo to Edmonton, and am hoping the market there regains at least a little rationality before I return. Thanks for your insights!

wizardofozziejurock said...

Tsur did buy actually, I'm not sure exactly when but I think it was sometime in late 2005 or early 2006.

Tsur's problem is that he just can't take his blinders off when it comes to recognizing that this has been a housing bubble, and not just a boom.

Understandable a few years ago, but given the U.S. housing bust you'd think he'd put 2 and 2 together.

He's following in the footsteps of many of his U.S. colleagues who just never got it.

solipsist said...

He's following in the footsteps of many of his U.S. colleagues who just never got it.

That is what I don't get. How can these people - all of them - be so wrong when a relatively un-educated plebe such as I am was shocked in 2003, let alone 2005. And now... Plateaux? -10%?

It reminds me of my trip to the dean, disgusted at the intellectual desert that I was enrolled in, and asked for a professorship on the basis that I could teach better, and excite more critical thought and curiousity than the existing faculty could. She gave me a funny look, and made some suggestions of obtaining a Masters Degree. I laughed, and asked her if that was all it took. Pfft.

Rent3r said...

Just wanted to comment, Solipsist, I read this blog almost every other day. I hope you don't stop blogging because that would be a tragedy.

House prices in BC are crazy, and if it takes a massive correction to reign in the number's I'm all for it. Alas, it's easy for me to say as an outsider waiting cooly for a time to jump in.

patriotz said...

How can these people - all of them - be so wrong

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."

Upton Sinclair

solipsist said...

rent3r & anon. - thanks for that. I should try to post more.

patriotz - thanks for the snicker. A perfect answer to a rhetorical question. I suppose it might be better asked, who sees fit to pay them?. Never mind...