The 10 worst places to live in America as per WalletPop using a variety of criteria, including unemployment rates, health data, the number of foreclosures, crime statistics, climate and other measures of misery. High on the list and a common thread in many of these places is political corruption.
1. El Centro, California – Population: 41,241
Welcome to the home of the highest unemployment in the United States at 27.5%. OUCH!
One in four people here are out of work and the city holds the not-so distinguished honor of having the highest unemployment rate — 27.5%.
The desert city, which is located in Imperial County just across the border from Mexicali, has a jobless rate triple the national average of 9.5% thanks to the seasonal fluctuations of field laborers.
2. Cleveland, Ohio – Population: 431,363
LeBron James isn’t the only person leaving Cleveland. The U.S. Census estimated that 2,658 people left the city in 2009, the largest numerical drop among America’s major cities.
Forbes also put Cleveland atop its list of most miserable U.S. cities, factoring in its high unemployment (although at 9.1% it’s below the national average), high taxes, lousy weather, political corruption and lousy sports teams — and that was before LeBron decided to leave.
Nicknamed the “Mistake by the Lake,” Cleveland ranked near the bottom when looking at corruption on the Forbes list. “Northern Ohio has seen 309 public officials convicted of crimes over the past 10 years,” according to the Forbes story, which cites data from the Justice Department. “A current FBI investigation of public officials in Cuyahoga County (where Cleveland is located) has ensnared more than two dozen government employees and businessmen on charges including bribery, fraud and tax evasion.”
Cleveland also ranks in the top third of all metro areas for foreclosure rates. The city has thousands of abandoned homes, in part because it provided down payments through the federally-funded Afford-a-Home program to many people who could not afford their mortgage payments.
3. Detroit, Michigan – Population: 871,121
Conveniently enough, Detroit is #4 with a bullet on Forbes “most miserable” city’s list.
Detroit is America’s most dangerous city, with 1,220 violent crimes per 100,000 people, according to violent crime statistics from the FBI’s latest uniform crime report, issued in 2008. It’s heavy reliance on the stumbling auto industry hasn’t helped matters much. Motown also boasts high foreclosure and unemployment rates
According to reports, 20% of U.S. homeowners owing more on a mortgage than their homes are worth. The number of “underwater” borrowers is bad for them, but an opportunity for other first time home owners who were previously shut out of the process.
Real-estate Web site Zillow.com said that overall, the number of borrowers who are underwater climbed to 20.4 million at the end of the first quarter from 16.3 million at the end of the fourth quarter. The latest figure represents 21.9% of all homeowners, according to Zillow, up from 17.6% in the fourth quarter and 14.3% in the third quarter.
“What’s going on here is that you don’t have any markets that have turned around and you have new markets, like Dallas, that have joined the ranks” of communities where home prices have fallen, said Stan Humphries, a Zillow.com vice president.
What is interesting is the percentage of the top 10 “underwater” cities in the United States. As the Obama Administration looks to stabilize the housing market with tax dollars, why is it that the large percentage of underwater borrowers all seem to be in the same states? California, Florida and Nevada seem to be the worst hit.
Question One: Is the percentage of underwater borrowers inflated by some 4 or 5 states that have been hit worse than others where housing prices prior to the down turn in the economy were highly inflated? Not to make light of the situation, but does this mean that the government is going to help with car payments as well? The minute you drive off the lot in a new car the value of the car drops below what you just paid for it. Are bailouts next for car loans?
Question Two: Your home is an investment like a stock. Why would one stop paying their mortgage just because, at the present, the mortgage may be more the the worth of the home? Does that mean when home prices eventually come back in a cyclical manner that these same people who got tax payer bailouts through government incentive mortgage plans are going to pay back the difference?
Dude … Where’s the Hope?
Well that did not take long into the Barack Obama Presidency for former President Bill Clinton to start five newby Obama some pointers on how to be President. Clinton tells ABC News that Obama gets and “A” and then uses the proverbial “BUT”. Gee Bill, you might have just used the phrase, “in all due respect”.
Actually what Clinton might have basically said was … Dude, ya won the election by down talking the economy and some how every thing collapsed just at the opportune time you ran for President. However, you are now the President and your job is to make Americans confident, not want them to slit their wrists. That’s what Clinton really meant to say.
The irony in the “Man from Hope” telling the “Candidate of Hope” that he must act now as a President act more hopeful in talking to the American public during these economy times is stuff that SNL skits are made of.
Regarding Obama’s bleak warnings that “the economy could get worse before it gets better,” and that the economic stimulus program is only the beginning of the end of the economic crisis, Clinton said, “I like the fact that he didn’t come in and give us a bunch of happy talk. I’m glad he shot straight with us.”
But he added, “I just want the American people to know that he’s confident that we are gonna get out of this and he feels good about the long run.”
Dog Day Real Estate Market: Michael Vick Dogfighting House on the Auction Block … Fails to Sell Again
The Michael Vick dog fighting house is back on the market and will be auctioned off again this Friday at 4:00 pm. Maybe this time the realty group will accept the offer for the 5 bedroom Surry County home instead of being greedy and taking a proverbial bath as the real estate market in the US has gone to the dogs.
Motley’s Auction and Realty Group is handling the sale of the five-bedroom house in Surry County. The company’s Web site says the bidding Friday will start at $590,000.
America was built on the hard work, perseverance and responsibilty of generations and generations of people. Individuals faced tough times and the road bumps of life and over came life’s issues, trials and tribulations because they were responsible and wanted to succeed. There use to be a time when taking the easy way and especially fradulent way out was looked down upon.
Today, can that still be said to be true. In the, as News Busters calls it the “You have got to be Kidding Me” moment and as we just like to say WTF … the San Francisco Chronicle actly had an artice advocating for people to stop making payments on their mortgage so that they would qualify for the government bail out package. Some how if one buts too much house and one they cannot afford they are supposed to be bailed out and put and even heavier burden on tax payers and responsible home owners who pay their mortgage. Unreal.
From the San Francisco Chronicle: ‘Are you an idiot to keep paying your mortgage’?
Should you keep paying your mortgage?
If you have significant equity in your home, absolutely.
If you don’t, it’s getting harder to answer that question, especially when our government keeps giving people who owe more than their homes are worth so many reasons not to pay.
Last week, the government announced a program that will substantially lower payments for many homeowners who have little or no equity, but only if they are at least 90 days delinquent.
Here is how one qualifies for this program that will be abused just like ever other government hand out or entitlement. Go to NewsBusters and read more on the ridiculousness of the plan and the program that is destine for abuse.
According to the Politico, a tentative agreement has been reached in the $700 billion Treasury bail out plan. Congressional negotiators “made great progress” toward reaching a deal on the bail out plan. Isn’t it unfortunate that it takes the specter of the complete crash of the US financial markets before Congress actually sits down and does the work of the people rather than playing partisan politics?
click on pic to watch and learn
House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., center, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., left. (Why does the bail out repulse Americans? Because the very people who are praising a deal is made are the very people who sat by and denied their was a crisis.)
From the initial failed deal put forth, it appears that Democrats have made some concessions and House Republicans won a major victory, “persuading negotiators to include a provision that would require the Treasury Department to create a federal insurance program that would guarantee banks and other firms against loss from any troubled asset.”
House and Senate negotiators have reached tentative agreement on Treasury’s $700 billion rescue plan for the financial markets after a marathon Capitol negotiating session that started Saturday afternoon and stretched into early Sunday morning.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said the deal still had to be “committed to paper,” a process that will continue throughout the night, with an eye toward a formal announcement Sunday.
“We have something verbal,” said Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.).
Republican Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), the chief negotiator for the House GOP, said he was “looking forward to what we’re going to see on paper” but said he was optimistic that it would be something House Republicans could support.
From The Weekly Standard, Deal is Reached. Is ACORN Out? It appears that there are some changes
The mortgage and financial credit problems in the United Sates have seem to had an effect on real estate in Aruba. Americans are selling their second homes in Aruba. I guess the saying is true, ever cloud does have a silver lining.
ORANJESTAD – Amongst Americans it’s almost impossible to find buyers for a house on Aruba due to the financial credit crisis in their country. Those who already have a house on Aruba, more often want to get rid of it. Several well-known real estate agents have noticed this since the real estate bubble burst mid last year in the US. (Amigoe: 7/24/2008)
Bad Timing for Barack Obama … Tony Rezko Trial Starts … Change? Looks Like Political Business As Usual
The Obama momentum may be coming to a quick end …
The timing of the start of the Tony Rezco felony trial, a once a top fund-raiser for Sen. Barack Obama, could not be any worse for the Democratic candidate of “Change and Hope”. After months and months of the media asking little no no tough questions of Barack Obama, no gloves may be ready to come off. Prompted by the Clinton campaign, Barack Obama is about to get a lesson in what it means to be vetted. Obama’s Rezko ties hardly seem like a political change … looks to be political business as usual.
In politics, perception is everything … Barack best answers the questions.
Sen. Obama hasn’t been accused of any wrongdoing in the case. But in recent days, the campaign of Sen. Hillary Clinton, his rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, has leveraged the opening of the trial to spotlight Sen. Obama’s ties to Mr. Rezko.
Sen. Obama has acknowledged his ties to Mr. Rezko. During a news conference Monday, he rejected the idea that “we have been trying to hide the bone on this.”
Accused Illinois fixer Antoin “Tony” Rezko is in debt by $50 million and relies on “family” handouts of $7,500 a month to pay monthly costs, according to a previously sealed court transcript reviewed by ABC News.
For just $8 million, you too can be the proud owner of a piece of “free love” Americana.
The famous or infamous farm in Bethel, NY farm that drew some 400,000 fans in 1969 for three days of sex, drugs and rock n’ roll is up for sale. Although if you ask people today if they went to Woodstock, the numbers that say yes swell to over a million.
Up for sale is the2,000-square-foot house that belonged to dairy farmer Max Yasgur, along with a larger farmhouse, a barn and 103 bucolic acres about 80 miles north of New York City.
(Woodstock of yesteryear)
Included are a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances, double convection ovens, Viking stove, antique soapstone sink, 22-foot vaulted ceilings and expansive views of the Pocono Mountains. There’s also a double whirlpool tub, steam shower and bidet.
There must be some baby-boomer sell out one time hippie out their driving a Beamer and now owning their own multi- million dollar business who would like to own “Woodstock” strictly for the nostalgia. The house on the farm where Woodstock took place has a bidet? Why does that just seem so wrong?
All of these Beverly Hills and Palm Beach homes that have been listed in the 30-50 million dollar range have nothing on a good midieval property out of the heart of Transylvania. The home that inspired the story of Dracula is for sale for a cool 78 million dollars.
Got to love it.
The family that owns a Transylvanian castle famous for its connections to the 15th Century medieval ruler who inspired “Dracula” said Wednesday that it wants to sell the fortress to local authorities for $78 million.
The local council said it was interested in buying Bran Castle, perched high on a rock and surrounded by snowcapped mountains in southern Transylvania. Dominic Habsburg, the owner, insisted his family had honorable intentions for wanting to sell the castle.
We are trying to find the best way to preserve the castle in the interest of the family and the people of Bran,” Habsburg said in a statement.
The castle was returned to Habsburg, a New York architect, in May. It was confiscated by the communists from Habsburg’s mother, Princess Ileana, in 1948, the year the royals were forced to leave the country.
After the restitution, concerns were raised that the family could sell the castle to a hotel chain and that the site could end up being the centerpiece of a Dracula theme park that would blight the surrounding, pristine countryside some 105 miles north of Bucharest. via the Chicago Tribune.