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Posts Tagged ‘Kurt Kelley’

“Fear Mongering,” and Manufactured Housing Advancement

July 11th, 2018 Comments off

 

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It’s going to get worse, before it gets better.”

–         Jim Reitzner, Asset Development Group (ADG).!

 

It’s about the rule of law.

 

It’s about laws that make good sense and were properly passed by the representatives of the people.

And the rule of law is going to be front and center with respect to the nation, and manufactured housing (MH) in the months ahead.

Who says?

Several MH industry, and national, voices.  Some examples.

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Kurt Kelley. Credit: MHProNews.

The role of judges in the US is to rule on what laws apply and what they mean.  Only when laws are ambiguous should the meaning of the law be determined by sources outside the written law itself,” said manufactured housing industry attorney, Kurt Kelley to MHProNews. “And when there is ambiguity, that source must only be from writings contemporaneous with the written law.  Seeking any other outside sources results in random results or results which are the product of a judge’s biases.  The concept of a “Living Constitution” is an prescription for results that reflect whatever biases a judge has.  Predictability in the law is a prerequisite to predictable liberties and thriving commerce.

Once again staying true to his campaign promises, President Trump just nominated Brett Kavanaugh as his pick to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court. It’s an excellent choice — though the coming wave of fear-mongering may hide that fact for a while,” the New York Post Editorial Board writes.

Judge Kavanaugh, 53, is widely seen as one of the top legal minds of his generation — so much so that now-Justice Elena Kagan recruited him to teach at Harvard Law, where students across the spectrum rave about him,” per that NY Post editorial.

Judge Kavanaugh understands the proper role of the judiciary and will faithfully honor the Constitution. That’s why I will lift heaven and Earth to see that he is confirmed,” Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) writes in the Washington Examiner. “He will be a strong, principled voice on the Supreme Court.”

 

MarkWeissManufacturedHousingAssociationForRegulatoryReformMHARRPresidentCEOMHProNews

Mark Weiss, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).

The rule of law, and the supremacy of law over the arbitrary whims of individuals who happen to wield government power, was a profound concern for the founders who debated and developed the Constitution of the United States. For over two centuries, legal scholars have pointed to the primacy of the “rule of law” in the system of limited government and defined powers established by the Constitution, stating, for example: “The rule of law may be the most significant and influential accomplishment of Western constitutional thinking. The very meaning and structure of our Constitution embody this principle. Nowhere expressed yet evident throughout the Constitution, this bedrock concept is the first principle on which the American legal and political system was built.”

–   Mark Weiss, J.D., President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).

 

The Battle Over the Rule of Law

Needless to say, there are a range of voices that disagree.

That tension was dramatically showcased just minutes after the announcement of Judge Kavanaugh, when anti-Trump protesters were prepared to protest any nominee he would name.

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Reports indicated that anti-Trump protestors had signs made up for each of the most likely nominees for replacing retiring Justice Anthony “Tony” Kennedy. These are not spontaneous protests, they are carefully organized and are well funded.

Some of those protesters at the Supreme Court on Monday are reportedly politically aligned with forces that have ties to the MH Action, leftist protest group.

Behind So-Called “MH Resident Activists,” MHAction’s Kevin Borden, Anti- HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Manufactured Housing Industry Protests

Knowing that protests in front of the Supreme Court Building would draw cameras and headlines, it is part of the stage-crafted use of mainstream media. It raises a range of questions that will be explored in the days ahead.  The same points are true for the MH Action group, only on a far smaller scale.

Suffice it to say for now,

  • that however qualified Judge Kavanaugh may be,
  • and however important his being confirmed is for all business,
  • including the manufactured home industry’s,
  • return to a rule of law — it will be strongly opposed.

Those opponents will be examined by MHProNews in the coming days.

 

Dependability, Certainty in Law Are Essential for Business, for Workers, and Commerce

Industry attorneys Weiss, Kelley plus those cited above all argue for a dependable rule of law, that is the bedrock of the authentically American system.  Certainty is one of the most common terms used by investors in manufactured housing.   Warren Buffett phrases it differently, at times – such as his point about an industry or business having a durable competitive advantage – but the point is similar.

How Warren Buffett Built Berkshire Hathaway Investment Empire, Infographic

Why are hundreds of billions of dollars pouring back into the United States? Yes, tax reform is an important part of the motivation.

But another key part is ‘Regulatory Reform,’ which President Donald J. Trump has himself touted repeatedly. Dependable, common sense regulations can harm or advance business, and thus harms or advances job creation too.

Regulatory reform is also a theme which MHARR and the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) have both been successfully arguing for in Washington.

While NFIB, which sources there have told the Daily Business News reportedly has a similar number of manufactured housing business members as MHI, and whose total numbers dwarf all of manufactured housing employment combined, MHARR is laser focused on regulations that have specifically harmed manufactured housing.

Weiss argues for enforcement of laws that could create millions of new manufactured home owners in the coming years.

The thrust of Weiss’ thesis is enforcement of existing laws, especially at HUD, which is the prime federal regulator of manufactured homes.

 

 

Left, Right, Center?

The problem with activist judges is that they undermine the rule of law. They also undercut the proper role of the legislative branch, which alone is given authority in the Constitution to make new laws.

Fear-mongering” is exactly what is already taking place, mostly by the political left, but also from some in the “never Trump” camp. For the left, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) has been a useful tool to get or defend positions which on their face are found no where in the Constitution.

When now Justice Clarence Thomas was undergoing his confirmation hearings, he went thought a barrage of attacks which he called “a high-tech lynching.”

Volunteer, family man, praised legal mind, and literarily an altar boy in his youth, Brett Kavanaugh could well face his own high-tech lynching.

It’s the price some are paying to drain the swamp of what Weiss called the “deep state” efforts in Washington that have harmed our industry for well over a decade.

The Importance for Businesses and Investors in Manufactured Housing for Selecting the Next Supreme Court Justice

Kelley’s prior comments on this topic are linked above, while Weiss’ new commentary are found at the link below.

“RESTORING THE RULE OF LAW TO MANUFACTURED HOUSING REGULATION” – MH Leader Call to Action

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Footnote 1: The expression by Jim Reitzner is a generic statement periodically used by that manufactured home industry professional that seems to fit this topic; but bit should not be construed as a direct quote by him given for this column.

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Publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – Masthead commentary, for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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Dog Whistles, as Epic Battle for Business Effecting Manufactured Housing, Others Looms

July 10th, 2018 Comments off

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As Campus Reform humorously pointed out, the battle over the next nominee to the Supreme Court of the United States began almost immediately after the announcement that Justice Anthony “Tony” Kennedy would retire.

 

While the manufactured home industry veteran did not mention SCOTUS or the vacancy, in what reads like an anticipatory statement, Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) said in a new article that it is time for a return to the rule of law, as it applies to manufactured housing. See that, linked here.

If certainty is an important issue for business and investing – and investors routinely tell MHProNews that it is – then dependability from the courts is a crucial issue for manufactured housing, and all others too.

Much of what has occurred in transforming American business and the legal landscape in recent decades has come from political and legal changes that flowed from Washington, D.C.

So like it or not, these issues matter to MHVille.

 

Increased Certainty for Business?

It is against a backdrop of certainty for business – rather than red herring issues like abortion, which even if someday it would be overturned, it would simply go back to the states – that this Daily Business News post examines the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh.  He stated last night that “A judge must be independent and must interpret the law, not make the law. A judge must interpret statutes as written, and a judge must interpret the Constitution as written, informed by history and tradition and precedent.”

That is the essence of what certainty is. That a law means what it says, and thus provides certainty for business and all others. The rest are details and commentary.

Showing off their sometimes-subtle whit, right wing Breitbart – which provided some of the pull quotes used here – shared a video from left wing MSNBC to show their readers what Judge Kavanaugh had to say in his 8 minutes of initial fame. Our video will be from CSPAN.

 

 

Kavanaugh was a Bush Administration appointee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit on May 30, 2006, per federal records.

Kavanaugh said, “The framers established that the Constitution is designed to secure the blessings of liberty. Justice Kennedy devoted his career to securing liberty. I am deeply honored to be nominated to fill his seat on the Supreme Court.”

The D.C. judge later added some of the most important talking points that will doubtlessly come up during his confirmation process, “My judicial philosophy is straightforward. A judge must be independent and must interpret the law, not make the law. A judge must interpret statutes as written, and a judge must interpret the Constitution as written, informed by history and tradition and precedent. For the past 11 years, I’ve taught hundreds of students, primarily at Harvard Law School. I teach that the Constitution’s separation of powers protects individual liberty, and I remain grateful to the dean who hired me, Justice Elena Kagan. As a judge, I hire four law clerks each year. I look for the best. My law clerks come from diverse backgrounds and points of view. I am proud that a majority of my law clerks have been women.”

 

The View from the Oval Office

In a release to the Daily Business News, the White House press room said last night that Kavanaugh was “the best of the best.”

NomineeAssociateJusticeBrettMKavanaughWhiteHouseDailyBusinessMHProNews

 

Campus Reform and Democratic Push Back

Millions will be spent by both major parties and their backers, primarily in battle ground states where Democrats have senators up for re-election this November in ‘red states’ that President Donald J. Trump won in 2016.

 

As MHProNews previously reported, several potential issues are expected to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court in the coming years that will impact manufactured housing. So this business of certainty and following the law and Constitution matters.

The Importance for Businesses and Investors in Manufactured Housing for Selecting the Next Supreme Court Justice

 

The link to MH Industry attorney Kurt Kelley’s exclusive commentary to MHProNews on the importance of the vacant seat is above.

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Publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – Masthead commentary, for MHProNews.com.

Tony is the multiple award-winning managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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Several issues that face manufactured housing are likely to end up at Supreme Court of the United States Certainty matters. See linked download, here.

 

“I Hate Politics!” – Bedminster Watch, and Manufactured Housing Shipments

June 30th, 2018 Comments off

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I hate politics,” say millions, including some industry professionals. “I hate history,” say others, who simply don’t get it. That’s music to the ears of savvy politicians, and even some businesses and investors, who know that historic insights and political influence can be worth millions to billions annually. 

 

That “I hate politics and history” also begs for a response, because those who loathe those two topics could legitimately benefit, given the proper understanding. 

Why do politics or history matter to manufactured housing professionals? 

For the thousands who logon daily to read MHProNews, they instinctively know that local, state or federal policies – which involves politics – are a key to unlocking hundreds of thousands of more new manufactured home sales annually.

The evidence from linked reports at the end of this column suggests that’s not hyperbole.

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Submit confidential or on-the-record news tips, or comments at this linked email –> iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com.

Taking the “wheat and chaff” approach to everyone, every organization or every topic is how one can learn and benefit from even controversial people or organizations.

The Daily Business News will succinctly make the point about history and politics with two controversial figures who are widely known in America and in the manufactured housing industry.  

The first is Warren Buffett. One wheat takeaway is the fact that Buffett says he spends 5 to 6 hours a day reading. Much of his reading relates to business history and politics, as that may relate to his business interests.  Buffett’s reading for understanding is what he says gives him a great advantage, one that CNBC noted that almost anyone could do too.

Be you a Donald Trump fan or not, the controversial president is likewise correct when he said that it ‘pays to know everything you can about the issues that impact your business.’  Again, that’s politics and history too. 

Two highly successful men, two distinctly different styles and politics, and both embrace political and historically significant issuesThat’s wheat. 

Be it:

   zoning,

   Dodd-Frank,

   rent-control,

   ObamaCare,

   property rights,

   privacy,

   or a range of political or judicial issues,

politics and who sits on the bench are important topics that every prudent manufactured housing industry pro should want to know about.  

Politics and the law impacts your business daily.

Failures to engage on those issues only guarantees more of the same. For America and our industry to progress, thoughtful understanding is required.

 

Importance of Clear-Eyed Understanding

Often, only the history of an issue can unlock the underlying understanding necessary to advance on something critical for profitable progress. 

Once clarity exists on hot topics involving politics or history, then those insights can be more effectively and efficiently dealt with. As the best-selling  7 Habits of Highly Successful People author Stephen Covey said, one must seek first to understand, then to be understood.

The7HabitsOfHighlySuccessfulPeopleSnapshotEditionStephenCoveyManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

All 7 habits are pillars for success, but today’s spotlight for this post is habit #5.

Once there is an underlying understanding, then that ought to be shared as needed with one’s circle of influence.

Even if clarity on an issue doesn’t yet exist, asking others you know about that topic can prove useful. That can be as easy as sending a link about an article via a message, and asking for feedback from your peers on the political, legal, or historical topic. See what they say or think. Then, whatever they say, for even further understanding, ask, help me to better understand, why do you think or say that?’

 

The Investment of Time

There may be a small percentage of individuals who can only spare 30 minutes in daily reading about their industry here on MHProNews. But if each post or article is carefully examined, tens of thousands could be learning more, to earn more. Each subject published is curated with the industry professional, advocates, or investor in mind.  

There are no throw away topics on MHLivingNews.com, nor on MHProNews.com. Our view or understanding may evolve on an issue, but that’s also a reason why history matters. Thinkers ask, ‘why was there an evolution on that issue?’

Seeking understanding is a key that all motivated and great performers in any profession seek.

  

A Competitor Said  

A few weeks ago, a competitor messaged to say that while ‘onlyMHProNews is covering certain hot-button or controversial manufactured home industry issues, he said that a thousand pros are discussing those same topics.

It was a backhand compliment, as he admits he won’t touch the same issues raised on the Daily Business News or elsewhere on the industry’s largest and most popular trade media site.

But what that competitor may not realize is that it’s more than “a 1,000,” it’s thousands daily. For an industry of the modest size of manufactured housing, it’s an achievement.  But the purpose here is to support the growth of the industry, so that tens of thousands more are proudly serving well in this crucial profession.

The reason so many industry pros read here is we curate meaty, useful topics for industry professionals to chew on. Want muscle?  Get some intellectual protein here. 

Part of the proof comes from professionals who may agree or disagree on an issue, but they come daily to MHProNews either way. An industry attorney, not the one that will be quoted below, called recently to say that he realized after reading several articles on the same subject, that our motivation was sincere.  

That’s a long way to set the table for what we’re dubbing, Bedford Watch.”  But we teed it up a step-at-a-time, because we seek to engage ever more deeply with you, our readers, in a meaningful way. The goal, once more, is to fuel industry growth.  The industry’s success is our mutual victory, as the 7 Habits calls “think win-win.”

 

Bedford Watch

The President of the United States (POTUS) Donald J. Trump will reportedly be meeting at his Bedford, NJ property meeting with some of his short list for potential nominees for the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS).

There are informed sources that tell the Daily Business News why they think that nominating the “right” justice could be a sea change. 

Other sources thing that one or more manufactured housing related issues will be heard by the Supreme Court in the next few years. The article linked below can be read later, for greater understanding.

Life, Liberty, Property – Supreme Court – and Manufactured Housing

Consider what Kurt Kelley, a long-time periodic contributor to MHProNews, and well-known industry attorney from Texas, had to say about the importance of the replacement of retiring Justice Anthony “Tony” Kennedy.

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Kurt Kelley. Credit: MHProNews.

Predictability in law is the key to a prosperous Republic.  Laws must be interpreted based on the language in them first and foremost. Only, when the language is unclear, should a judge seek evidence on related legislative discourse and legislative intent at the time the law was passed to help interpret it.  Otherwise, law risks becoming whatever a particular Judge or powerful person/group wants it to be,” Kelley said. 

This was the consistent judicial philosophy of former Justice Antonin Scalia, and often adopted by Justice Kennedy,” Kelley noted. Note the attorney’s nuance on Kennedy?

 

Seeking Justices who interpret the laws based on their personal conclusion of what culture wants or what one Legislator said about a law, or what the law means in another country, results in the creation of different law created by the Judicial Branch, the branch of government neither elected by nor accountable to the people.” 

Kelly shared a recent example of a hot-button topic.  

Supreme Court “Justice Sotomayor’s recent dissenting opinion regarding the “President Trump Travel Ban” is an example of the danger of violating Scalia’s decision formula.  She [Sotomayor] based her emotional opinion on what she viewed as President Trump’s intent as evidenced by select things President Trump said while campaigning, versus what the law specifically said in plain English.  Justice Sotomayor concluded the law was a ban on all Muslims entering the United States.  However, the “Trump Travel Ban” neither states this nor is it applied in such fashion by Border Control.”

It’s a well reasoned statement intended for our publication’s audience, from a thoughtful and successful manufactured housing industry professional.  You can see the unedited comments from Kelly at the link below.

The Importance for Businesses and Investors in Manufactured Housing for Selecting the Next Supreme Court Justice

It’s an example of fine wheat that any industry pro can embrace.  

SeparateWheatfromChaffValuablefromWorthlessDictionaryManufacturedHOusingINdsutryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

It’s a valuable principle that can be applied to anybody, or any group.

And it deals with politics and history, the latter of which is what every legal case must study.  Sometimes, by increasing one’s understanding, and embracing what one thought they hated – like politics and history – a surprising and beneficial outcome can result. 

MHProNews will continue to bring Daily Business News readers curated, thought-provoking comments, columns, and commentary that prudent professionals can benefit from. The goal remains sustainable, ethical industry growth. So stay tuned, and you can sign up for the industry’s most popular emailed headline news at the link below. That’s “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use.” © ##   ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Explosive! MSU’s Mark Skidmore on Flawed Tornadoes and “Mobile Homes” Study, Exclusive

June 10th, 2017 Comments off

MarkSkidmoreMSUEconomicsProfessorMobileManufacturedHomeFLawedTornadoStudyManufacturedHousingIndustryResearchDataReportsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThere are lies, damned lies and statistics.”

– Mark Twain

How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg? Four. Saying that a tail is a leg doesn’t make it a leg.”

– Abraham Lincoln

 

We don’t plan to respond any further…Our analysis captures the average effect of mobile home living on tornado related fatalities…it does not distinguish between types or nature of mobile homes such age, improper installation of additions, proper tie downs, etc.”

– Mark Skidmore, Michigan State University (MSU)

In an explosive set of admissions that were not part of their original, and widely-published by other media study of tornadoes, deaths and ‘mobile homes,’ MSU’s Mark Skidmore admitted in an on-the-record email exchange with MHProNews that several factors were ignored in their research.

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L. A. “Tony’ Kovach.

Those factors,” says L. A. “Tony” Kovach, “completely change the import of their findings. When they admit that they didn’t consider the age of the homes, improper installations, proper tie downs and other factors, that’s like admitting that some of the key facts in the cause of death by tornado are being ignored.”

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Mark Weiss. Credit: MHARR.

It’s unfortunate and telling that the authors, when confronted with the facts regarding today’s manufactured homes were unwilling to further engage and address those facts,” said Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).

Weiss was a party to the exclusive exchange from the outset.

I am happy to talk with you or correspond with further if that is helpful,” said Skidmore just last week.

That willingness to was before he had to look, and look again, at facts that they now admit to not considering.

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These photos above are both from the same storm in Moore, OK. The houses on the left were conventional houses. They are rubble, leveled. The manufactured home on the right was rolled over, but someone could survive in that home. What’s not visible is that the manufactured home on the right may not have had proper tie downs. Industry professionals routinely recommend that, and in many places now, is required by law.

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Mark Skidmore, MSU.

Skidmore said, “…Again, I think the benefits of manufactured homes are great…I see them as filling an important niche in the housing market (as highlighted in the book chapter I forwarded).  Still, is it possible we could do better?  A high proportion of tornado fatalities are connected to mobile home living, and it isn’t just our research.  Does it make sense to look at this more carefully and see if we can do better?  Maybe it’s just the older mobile homes.  Or maybe its improper tie downs.  Or maybe is the improper additions you highlighted.  Certainly there is variability in quality of manufactured housing…I’d be quite happy to live in some but others are shoddy.  Perhaps additional analysis could help zero in on what is happening??”

He added, “Manufactured housing has come a long way while at the same time maintaining affordability…but isn’t there room for further improvement?”

Kovach did not disagree with the MSU findings, rather, he pointed out that the findings failed to dig into issues that impacted the topic of fatalities, which was sensationalized in the media and their publicity of the research.

MSUphotoTornadoDestructionwithTonyKovach'squestionsToMarkSkidmoreEconomicsProfessorMSU

Kovach also noted that conflating the terms ‘mobile homes’ and ‘manufactured homes’ creates potential confusion for those residents who are living in manufactured homes.  HUD Code manufactured home owners and residents could be made to think that they had the same risk factor that mobile home residents do.  That’s not a given, as Skidmore was happy to admit.

I did not mean to conflate…I think the statement indicates that they are different…I just don’t have data to test for differences and I asked you if you have such data,” Skidmore replied.

LATonyKovachMHLivingNewsMHProNews

L. A. “Tony” Kovach addressing industry professionals at an educational session.

Mark,
I hear you sir, and I get that point.  But the research is being pushed out by Forbes and others with conflated terminology.

Your problem noted is correct, the Census Bureau doesn’t break it down. But I’m not sure you see that this doesn’t excuse the other issues?

So that still leaves our other questions unanswered.  Kindly do so, point for point.  Just reply below to each question, for clarity.  It’s necessary for the record to be clear to all involved.

Again, thank you,” replied Kovach for MHProNews.

The photo above is a still from an IBHS wind study test. The conventional house on the left loses its roof, and ends up collapsing, see the video below. The manufactured home on the right, with a properly attached cover on one side, has only minor damage under hurricane force winds. Who says? IBHS Chief Engineer Tim Reinhold, and the video footage below. Seeing is believing.

After a few days elapsed without a reply from MSU, Kovach and Weiss followed up.

Hi Tony, We don’t plan to respond any further.  However, please let me know if you are aware of any additional data on the nature of mobile homes by county over the last 40  years; we are interested in doing additional statistical analysis to learn more about what it is that makes some types of mobile homes more vulnerable to high wind events such as tornados.  Our analysis captures the average effect of mobile home living on tornado related fatalities…it does not distinguish between types or nature of mobile homes such age, improper installation of additions, proper tie downs, etc. Best regards, Mark,” said Skidmore.

ManufacturedHomeHurricaneTornadoWindstormVideoManufacturedHomeLivingNews

The year that 4 hurricanes hit Florida, there was an estimated $50 billion in property damage. Older mobile homes were destroyed, but manufactured homes right next door survived. Some 1600 properly installed manufactured homes were hit by those storms that year. Not one was blown off its foundation. Not one of those newer manufactured homes was destroyed. While hurricanes and tornadoes aren’t identical, the still above dramatizes the point that mobile and manufactured homes aren’t the same in durability.  Still from the video on this page.

Kovach pressed for additional responses to substantive questions.  Those are planned as part of yet another critical revelation coming on yet the apparent flaw in such research.

When Kovach’s follow up drew no response, MHARR’s Mark Weiss jumped in.

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Mark Weiss, MHARR. Photo credit, MHProNews.

Mark, you stated last week that you would be happy to engage in such a discussion.  Having set this episode in motion with hyperbolic language and some dubious assertions, I would ask that you please do respond to the questions posed by Tony Kovach, thank you,” wrote Weiss for MHARR.

Silence — from Skidmore, his research colleague, and the communications department at MSU followed.

JoplinMOManufacturedHomesOKSiteBuiltHousingIsWhatGodCrushedManufacturedHomeLivingNEwsAn issue ignored by most researchers is this, that as tragic as the loss of a life in a storm is, the odds are 1.8 million to one in the most recent year that someone living in a mobile home or a manufactured home would not die in a tornado related incident.

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L. A. “Tony’ Kovach.

In 2016, NOAA Reported 12 deaths in what it calls “mobile homes.” That’s a 0.00000055% chance of dying in a tornado for the year. To rephrase, the odds were 1,833,333 to 1 in your favor that you wouldn’t die in a mobile or manufactured home in 2016,” said Kovach.

Imagine if you could go to Las Vegas and get 1.833 million to one odds in your favor.  Vegas would go broke in a day.  That’s one of the safest bets imaginable,” he says.

Should there be tornado safety promotion?  Yes, but that should not be limited to mobile or manufactured homes.  Are there safeguards that professionals and consumers should promote and practice?  Yes.  But as things stand at this very moment, you’re at greater risk of dying in your bathtub by a factor of 70 than you are in dying in a mobile or manufactured home. Tens of millions are under the false impression that manufactured homes are death traps.  That’s simply not the case, nor is it true of older mobile homes.”

No one is suggesting doing away with or avoiding using bathtubs due to accidental deaths that take place in them.

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Key Facts Skidmore’s Statements Spotlight.

MHProNews and/or MHLivingNews will do a follow up in the near term, but in the interim, the revelations above undermine the MSU study – and all others like it – for the following reasons.

1)    Mobile homes and manufactured homes are not the same thing.

2)    When Skidmore admits that they are different, yet the terminology is conflated – it’s akin to calling a bag phone from the 1980s a smart phone today. The smart phone evolved from the bag phone, but they are quite different in capabilities.

3)    None of the publicized material by MSU made it into the admissions that Skidmore did in the on-the-record Q&A with Kovach and Weiss. For example, quotes from Skidmore:

  • I think the benefits of manufactured homes are great.
  • I see them as filling an important niche in the housing market.
  • Maybe it’s just the older mobile homes.”
  • Or maybe its improper tie downs.”
  • Or maybe is the improper additions you highlighted.”
  • Certainly there is variability in quality of manufactured housing…I’d be quite happy to live in some but others are shoddy.”
  • Perhaps additional analysis could help zero in on what is happening?? “

It is precisely that “additional analysis” that the Q&A with MSU, MHARR and MHProNews was aimed at accomplishing.

Will other media, once they discover these admission, begin to dig deeper?

We will continue to follow this topic,” Kovach said, “and we encourage industry professionals to share these facts with their residents.  Improper add-ons and proper tie downs are two of the keys, per the research by IBHS Chief Engineer Tim Reinhold.”

Kovach did want to publicly thank Skidmore and Weiss for taking part in the frank and respectful exchange.  Kovach noted that Skidmore may have been under instructions from MSU not to go further in the dialogue. As other third party research has shown, universities often receive grants that can influence their research, and the outcomes of that research.

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To see the full text of Skidmore’s originally published article, along with the his full study, plus the early parts of the email exchange – including comments from other manufactured home industry professionals – in those details,  click here.

For additional resources relating to the climate portion of the issue MSU raised, see this linked page.  The information linked from this report and the insights above  are already useful in countering the false impressions similar research produces.  “This is important for professionals, the public, public officials, policy wonks, the media, and open-minded researchers,” Tony Kovach said. ##

(Editor’s note: A veteran reporter told MHProNews that a good story – or a good study – ought to be “bullet proof.” No flaws should exist in the narrative, argument or findings. The quotes at the top of this article aren’t meant to imply that Skidmore or his colleagues at MSU have deliberately deceived using statistics or by mixing nomenclature.  But they raise the point that even if the MSU statistics are precise, they fail to address the issues noted above. That flaw makes their research almost irrelevant in terms of its value.  Further, by conflating terminology, it creates risks that would not otherwise exist, which will be part of our follow up report. Watch for it.)

(Image credits are as shown, and when by third parties, are proided under fair use guidelines.)

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News, on MHProNews.com.