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Machiavellian “Godfather” – Sam Zell, Warren Buffett, Capital, Lending and Crossed Lines in Manufactured Housing

November 17th, 2018 Comments off

 

MachiavellianGodfatherSamZellWarrenBuffettCaptilLendingCrossedLinesManufacturedHousingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Keep your friends close,

and your enemies closer.”

 

This [saying] has frequently been ascribed to Sun Tzu and once in a while to Niccolò Machiavelli or Petrarch,” says Edwar Louk in Quorayet there are no distributed sources saying which was its origin before its utilization by “Michael Corleone” in The Godfather Part II (1974), composed by Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola: “My dad taught me numerous things here — he educated me in this room. He trained me — hold your friends close but your enemies closer.”

 

There’s a well known U.S. affordable housing crisis. Lawrence Yun at the National Association of Realtors said earlier this year that only builders getting really busy will close the gap, which he estimated at the time as 8.3 million housing units.  A number of tech gurus have said that only factory-home building can close that housing construction needs gap.

Several sources cited at the end of this report are from outside of the manufactured housing industry.  They have said, after researching the matter, that modern manufactured homes (MH) are an obvious part of the solution for the affordable housing crisis.  They include, but are not limited to:

  • The National Association of Realtors,
  • the Urban Institute,
  • Bloomberg,
  • Fannie Mae,
  • Freddie Mac,
  • Value Penguin,
  • HUD Secretary Ben Carson,

and others are among those in 2018 that have praised the quality, surprising safety, and value of today’s manufactured homes.

Yet the manufactured housing industry struggles in its actual performance, in bottom-line new-home sales. Why?

The reasons are many, such as

  • placement/zoning,
  • media/image,
  • regulatory and more.
  • But let’s focus for the next few minutes on access to capital and financing.

There are few in manufactured housing who can as credibly claim to understand the import and legal methods of raising capital as Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) Chairman Sam Zell.

Zell has numerous other business interests.  He is worth billions.  He’s been quoted saying he is happy to be correct 60 or 70 percent of the time. Billionaire Warren Buffett has famously been critiqued – and admitted on occasion – to making mistakes or missing opportunities too. Not to worry, because the baseball slugger who consistently bats .350 or better is worth millions annually.  Thankfully, no one has to bat a 1,000 to be successful.

So perfection isn’t the standard in business or investing. Consistency, overall performance, quality, profitability, legality – and hopefully ethics are, or should be – the standards. Toyota recently recalled 192,000 Prius vehicles in the U.S. alone.  Pay attention, because that won’t cause much of a hiccup for sales by Toyota.  So why, by contrast, does bad news so routinely harm manufactured homes so much more?

 

Stating the Obvious Brings Clarity

It bears stating the obvious. Manufactured housing is made up of a myriad of interrelated and specialized interests. They include, but are not necessarily limited to:

  • the production of manufactured homes,
  • the sale of manufactured homes,
  • the transportation and installation of manufactured homes,
  • land-lease manufactured home communities,
  • financing of manufactured homes (wholesale inventory and retail sales),
  • due diligence firms,
  • legal, accounting, HR, and compliance experts,
  • associations,
  • and the list goes on.

Furthermore, the manufactured home (MH) industry can be segmented into corporate giants, mid-level, smaller or even ‘mom and pop‘ sized enterprises.

Zell’s and Buffett’s interests in the MH Industry have both been represented on the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Executive Committee level for years.  That’s where the power is at the MHI trade association.

The two moguls each know how to attract media when they want it. But given all that, it should not be construed to mean that Buffett or Zell’s interests are always in synch.

Nor are Buffett’s and Zell’s politics apparently in alignment.

 

 

ZellSamuelOpenSecretsCampaignContributions2018ManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews

According to Open Secrets, which relies on public records, Sam Zell gave 100 percent to Republican candidates up to the 2018 reporting period reflected in the graphic, shown above. By contrast, Warren Buffett gave 100 percent of his campaign contributions to Democratic ones, as the image below demonstrates.

WarrenBuffettMarketWatchGivingIn2018CampaignDemocrats

 

Keep you friends close, and your enemies closer. With that backdrop, it is useful for manufactured home professionals to glance at the concept of interlocking directorates.

 

InterlockingDirectoratesGraphicExampleManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Business Dictionary defines ‘interlocking directorates’ thus, “Membership on the boards of directors of two or more firms by the same individual. It is normally legal except where the firms are mutual competitors, but is usually considered undesirable because it allows firms to exchange non-public (privileged) information and, therefore, may hinder fair competition.”

 

InterlockingDirectoratesDefinedDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

Note that their definition is perhaps a bit legalistic. It’s because there are subtle ways that interconnected operations can influence other:

  • companies,
  • nonprofits,
  • foundations,
  • political organizations,
  • or governmental agencies,

which can then be wielded in a dynamically similar way as interlocking directorates operate.  As a reminder, here are MHI’s antitrust guidelines, and note the highlighted portions.

 

Interlocking Directorates

What perhaps too few in the trenches of manufactured housing grasp are how influence, information, and even power can be wielded by means of connections that are technically public, but if unreported or ignored, are effectively invisible. That isn’t a conspiracy, and it can be done in legal or illicit ways, as the prior definition, link to MHI’s antitrust guidelines, and graphics above itself suggests.

Those like Zell grasp this reality well, per our industry sources.

But that doesn’t mean that elites and/or their field leaders can also be blindsided by revelations such as Buffett’s obliquely funding activist protest groups, such as via the Tides Foundation, which in turn funds:

 

NovoFoundationWarrenBuffettTidesFoundationFundsMHActionManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Those bulleted activist groups are politically leftist, democratic socialist, or Democratic party in orientation. It’s what Buffett lieutenant Tim Williams, President and CEO of 21st Mortgage, a Berkshire-brand lender in manufactured housing, called aprogressive” “threat” that challenged manufactured housing. Yet Williams himself, per our sources, has personally contributed to progressive candidates, and via Political Action Committees (PACs), to several others.  We’re in football season, so can you spell, ‘head fake?’

Bluntly rephrased, Buffett has funded through various channels radical and leftist organizations that have deliberately targeted Zell’s ELS brand.

Let that sink in.

And if you are Sun Communities, UMH Properties, or any other sized manufactured home community or other MH operation, ponder this question. If Buffett’s money was used to target Zell, why wouldn’t they your or any other firm too?

 

WarrenBuffettGeorgeSorosPhotosHUDSecBenCarsonTidesFoundationLogoMHActionLogoMHActionProtestorPhotoManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews600

Warren Buffett has been funding leftist and Democratic causes and candidates for years. Among them are MHAction, which targeted via protest and mainstream media, ELS, among others in the industry. MHAction – which again benefited from cash that flowed from Buffett – also disrupted the address by HUD Secretary Ben Carson in Las Vegas last April.

 

Furthermore, Buffett’s Berkshire brand Clayton – per sources – has purportedly paid one or more writers who have spotlighted speaker/authors like Esther Sullivan. Professor Sullivan presents a mishmash of pro- and anti-manufactured home positions, most notably negative with regard the owners of certain manufactured home communities.

That’s not to say that only ELS has been targeted by progressive groups interconnected to Buffett’s financial largess. So have:

  • Frank Rolfe of MHPFunds/RV Horizons and his partners,
  • Blackstone – which entered manufactured home communities this year – and other community owners have been targeted by groups that were funded by sources that were given millions from Buffett’s coffers.
  • It’s not speculation, because there’s a public record and a money trail.

MHAction, MoveOn, The Indivisible Project, AntiFa are among those that have also targeted HUD Secretary Carson, others in the Trump Administration, including protests of President Donald J. Trump himself.  Battle lines are being drawn by Buffett on the political left and people like Zell who favor more pro-business policies, like those of the GOP and it’s disruptive 45th president.

 

WarrenBuffettBillClintonHillaryClintonBarackObamaKevinClaytonNathanSmithPhotosDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews600

 

A Surprising Discovery

MHAction directly and indirectly revealed to MHProNews their lack of interest in ‘small fish‘ like manufactured home community professionals, George Allen, Spencer Roane, Tom Lackey and SECO. Those three and their ‘education’ all have ties to business tactics that led the Chattanooga Times Free Press and other media to spotlight allegedly illegal activities that harmed numerous consumers. Per mainstream media and other sources to MHProNews, various public officials in Georgia and elsewhere are reportedly investigating those concerns.

 

TonyaEvansLost16000InvestedInHomeSheSaysPurchasedfromTomLackeyStoneyPointeMobileHomeParkManufacturedHousingIndustryNewsMHProNEws

If MHAction cared so deeply about ‘victims’ of ‘predatory companies,’ where were they on this issue? MHProNews knows from multiple sources that MHAction was aware of these events, but opted not to act on behalf of those residents. Learn more, linked here.

 

Put differently, there is an open question as to what motivated and directs MHAction or others, to target Zell, Rolfe and Blackstone instead of others like the example noted in the report about Lackey and company, which are linked from the image above and below.

 

TomLackeyPhotoGeorgeAllenphotoSpencerRoanePhotoMHVillageLogoMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Click here to learn more. If the pro-manufactured home industry’s trade media doesn’t police its own, then mainstream media and public officials will eventually do it instead. Accountability is a traditional role for any industry’s good trade media.  Click here to learn more about the troubling tales about Lackey, Roane, and Allen.

 

If MHAction and their allies are posturing as fighting for the ‘little guy’ who leases a site from an alleged problem operator, why did MHAction or other resident groups effectively ignore defending the purported victims of Tom Lackey? After all, various public accounts, and governmental investigations, claim and are investigating Lackey and his defenders/promoters shown above as potentially guilty of serious criminal and civil offenses.  Of course, like Buffett or anyone else, they are deemed innocent in the eyes of the law, until they plead or are proven guilty in a court of law.

So why does MHAction go after firm’s like Zell’s instead?

That’s not to suggest that Ken Borden at MHAction gets a call from Warren Buffett – that’s unlikely and unnecessary. All that billionaire Buffett has to know is that his money went to the Tides Foundation, and trusting the Tides’ track record would be enough for him. See what Buffett says in his own words, further below, about not-micromanaging. Then someone like Borden will be identified and selected, and they will know what to do, and not do.

 

PavingTheRoadToHellMHActionKevinBordenNYCCJonathanWestinDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Facts are facts. Borden and leftist NY Communities for Change, an offshoot of the now defunct, and scandal plagued ACORN, targeted ELS communities that were reportedly well run and operated within the law. By contrast, MHAction ignored Tom Lackey, George Allen, Spencer Roane and their colleagues. An on-the-ground source told MHProNews that Lackey’s community was “a slum.” Which begs the question. Is MHAction and other like organizations funded by Tides the strong arm tactics of the political left? Are they part of a shakedown, worthy of a RICO and other investigations by state or federal authorities? Legal sources have suggested precisely that could be true. For more on Borden, and MHAction, see “Paving the Road to Hell,” at this link.

 

Why This Matters to Firms of All Sizes in Manufactured Housing

Companies of all sizes in manufactured housing routinely need access to capital and financing.

Every sized operation is impacted by the industry’s stigma, which Clayton Homes and MHI posture at addressing, but have arguably clearly failed at fixing. The evidence? New HUD Code home sales statistics are a stark reminder.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHILogoSept2018MonthlyEconomicReportDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews (1)

From a report on MHLivingNews.com, which spotlights an article by Lending Tree that is superior to most anything that MHI has produced to ‘promote’ manufactured housing. See that Lending Tree statement – very favorable to manufactured homes – at this link here.

 

It’s the facts – performance – that is the baseline reminder that MHI and Clayton ‘leadership” have failed the industry’s independents.

Marty Lavin, an attorney, MHI award-winner, and long-time finance, community and retail success said that MHI works for the interests of the “big boys.” The interests of other sized firms are only protected to the extent they align with the biggest boys on the MH block, said Lavin. That would arguably be Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway, and their firms that operate in manufactured housing such as 21st Mortgage or Clayton Homes.

  • fact checks,
  • following the evidence,
  • following the Money,
  • following the performance vs. the words and deeds of MHI and others reveals this to be a logical Occam’s Razor reality.

Manufactured home operation of the small- to mid-range sizes were allowed to struggle, fail, or are acquired in part due to capital constraints. MHI failed them, in favor of a mega-billionaire. Who says? Among others, more MH industry award winners, like retailers Bob Crawford, or Alan Amy.

 

 

Zell warned how limiting capital access was a weakness for the industry, as the exclusive quotes below to MHProNews via the late Howard Walker – then ELS Vice Chairman – reflect.

 

 

MHI’s Former President Said…

MHI’s prior president, Chris Stinebert also warned the industry in a parting published message.  That’s found in a column in the Journal that was arguably a thinly-veiled warning to manufactured housing professionals.  Stinebert’s article could be read as a parting slap at MHI.

Every industry professional in the manufactured housing is directly or indirectly impacted by these factors MHI’s former president noted. Restricting financing limits sales, which harms affordable home ownership.  Note, one need not agree with Stinebert’s suggested cure to his point #4 to realize that he felt that there were problems with lending and capital access that needed to be addressed.

Not long after Stinebert exited MHI, the industry was about to be hit by the 2008 housing/finance meltdown in a way thousands of industry professionals did not anticipate.

 

A Smoking Gun…

Money trails are used by prosecutors and civil attorneys, say legal experts to MHProNews, to demonstrate what could be patterns of behavior. FBI officials have previously told the Daily Business News on MHProNews that a significant number of special agents are versed in accounting and other forms of business and financial expertise.  That’s precisely done so they can spot and find schemes that can be charged in court with various kinds of “white collar” illegal behavior.

Harvard’s Eric Belsky believed circa 2002 that manufactured housing would dominate conventional housing by 2010. Belsky knew about the repossession glut related to Conseco, Greentree or other now defunct MH lenders. Belsky still believed manufactured housing would not only recover, but would dominate.

Had Harvard’s expert been correct, the nation could have saved tens of billions annually. Furthermore, per research outlined on Value Penguin, the U.S. could gain $2 trillion annually in gross domestic product – impact similar to the Trump Administration regulatory roll backs or the 2017 tax cuts – if the affordable housing crisis was properly addressed.  And using manufactured homes, that could be done simply by enforcing existing laws.  No new legislation is needed. No need for years of debate.  Just enforce the law.

 

How did Belsky miss his estimates about the future of manufactured homes?

Because he failed to anticipate that Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway would buy Clayton Homes in 2003. That same year, Berkshire bought and rolled Oakwood Homes into Clayton, and would create via acquisitions the largest operation in manufactured housing.

Among those units acquired was 21st Mortgage Corp.  But let’s look for the next few moments at the 2008 housing/finance crisis.

During the calamity of the aftermath of 2008, an independent manufactured home producer then told MHProNews what 21st was about to do. But it wasn’t until recently that an actual document – a purported “smoking gun” from 21st’s Tim Williams to independent retailers was actually obtained. The document, shown further below, explained why 21st would only be cutting financing support to non-Clayton Homes manufactured housing carrying independents.

During a crisis, when people are desperately trying to swim for shore, details can often get lost in the fog of panic and pressure.

Thus, some issues only come into focus after a crisis – like the 2008 housing/mortgage meltdown – has come and gone.

When the Urban Institute or others study the manufactured home industry, and they ask why manufactured home sales are at such relatively low ebb, the 21st document, quotes from Buffett, and the videos that follow ought to be among the top exhibits examined.  So how did the Urban Institute – which also gets funded by Buffett, and where he is a life-time trustee – miss all three elements?

When federal officials, investors, and others wonder why manufactured homes haven’t done better, given the affordable housing crisis, these are important starting points for a clear understanding.

And when independent manufactured home retailers are wondering about the future – as which supplier(s) and service providers they should use – an adage ought to be applied.  Namely, that a reasonable predictor of future behavior is past behavior.

21stMortgageCorpLogoLetterheadJan302009TimWilliamsRetailersBrokersCutSpecifiedLendingMonopolisticPloyConcernManufacturedHomeDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

This document was provided as a news tip to MHProNews. To see the PDF of this document, click here or above.

 

The result was predictable. As a former Clayton manager, Ken Corbin publicly said, some 10,000 independent manufactured home retailers vanished. That bold move reflected by the 21st Mortgage document obviously harmed those independent retailers.  But it also hurt:

  • manufactured home communities, that for years relied upon retailers to sell homes into their communities.
  • independent manufactured home producers, which MHI’s own records reflect – see below – fell in numbers following the impact of the 21st document above, which Tim Williams signed.
  • several independent transport, installation, suppliers and others were lost or absorbed by larger firms, as the consequences mounted.

 

 

What’s often missed is that not long after that letter that Williams claimed 21st regrettably had ‘no choice,’ Kevin Clayton was bragging in the video below that “Warren” told him that they had “plenty of money.”

But perhaps the strongest example of how misleading the 21st document from Tim Williams arguably is comes from quotes from Warren Buffett’s own annual letter. Like the Clayton interview video included in this report, Buffett’s own words make it clear that Berkshire could have continued funding 21st, and thus, the industry’s independents.

Instead, they collectively killed off thousands of independent firms, purportedly by pulling the financing – the access to capital – that ELS’ Zell or Harvard’s Belsky both said are so necessary.

EricBelksyManufacturedHousingIndustryManufacuredHomeManufacturedHousingInstituteResearchDataAffordbleHousingMHProNewsDailyBuisnessNews575

Why did Belsky miss his predicted date? Because it came before Buffett’s entry into MH? Note that MHI, Tim Williams/21st and Clayton have all been asked to address these concerns.  At no time have they even tried to explain it, though previous to such inquiries they would give prompt replies to this trade media outlet.  How is that to be explained?

 

Quotes from Buffett’s Letter

Our gain in net worth during 2009 was $21.8 billion, which increased the per-share book value of both our Class A and Class B stock by 19.8%. Over the last 45 years (that is, since present management took over) book value has grown from $19 to $84,487, a rate of 20.3% compounded annually,” said Warren Buffett, Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, in his 2009 annual letter to shareholders.

Here are a few examples of how we apply Charlie’s [Munger, Berkshire Vice-Chairman] thinking at Berkshire: Charlie and I avoid businesses whose futures we can’t evaluate.”

In manufactured housing, that meant that Buffett and Munger had no doubt about the future of the industry. Investors, take note.

When the financial system went into cardiac arrest in September 2008, Berkshire was a supplier of liquidity and capital to the system, not a supplicant. At the very peak of the crisis, we poured $15.5 billion into a business world that could otherwise look only to the federal government for help,” said that same 2009 annual letter.

What did that mean for manufactured housing professionals? Simply this. That the 21st Mortgage Corporation letter to independent retailers includes claims that were at best mistaken, misleading – or even false – assertions.

Berkshire made billions that year. Buffett’s conglomerate lent billions that year, his letter said. Yet, 21st had the chutzpah to claim they couldn’t lend to manufactured housing retailers that didn’t carry Clayton Homes product? 

To better grasp the principles of how and why this was done, one must understand Buffett’s concept of the ‘strategic moat.’  The short video below explains part of it, in Buffett’s own words.

 

 

Lines were arguably crossed, or perhaps the better prose is ‘double crossed.’ While Kevin Clayton smiles in the video that follows, as he says how much Clayton valued independent retailers, what they collectively did to independents fails to match those sweet-sounding words.

 

 

Applying MHI award-winner, Marty Lavin’s mantras, “pay more attention to what people do than to what they say,” and “follow the money.”

That debatable double-cross may be why Zell stays in MHI, to – ala the mantra at top – to “keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.”

 

More from the Oracle of Omaha…

What Buffett Said – Who’s Responsible?

We tend to let our many subsidiaries operate on their own, without our supervising and monitoring them to any degree…Most of our managers, however, use the independence we grant them magnificently, rewarding our confidence by maintaining an owner-oriented attitude that is invaluable and too seldom found in huge organizations,” said Buffett that year.

But it should also be recalled that Buffett preaches about ‘widening the moat.’   See all of the Buffett videos on the key Kevin Clayton videos on the page, linked here, or watch the videos posted on this page.  Clayton talks about ‘widening the moat’ and besting competitors repeatedly in the video. 

Buffett referenced this from his 2008 annual letter, “We are certain, for example, that the economy will be in shambles throughout 2009 – and probably well beyond – but that conclusion does not tell us whether the market will rise or fall.”  He chastised many in media for sensationalism, adding: “Any investors who were misled by the sensationalists paid a big price: The Dow closed the day of the letter at 7,063 and finished the year at 10,428.”

Skipping deeper into that 2009 Buffet annual letter to Berkshire shareholders, we find the section that deals with Clayton Homes, and manufactured housing.  Note that the graphics shown are by MHProNews, but reflect data from Berkshire or others sources, as shown.

ClaytonHomesOakwoodHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEndof2003DailyBuisnessNewsMHanufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

“Finance and Financial Products

Our largest operation in this sector is Clayton Homes, the country’s leading producer of modular and manufactured homes. Clayton was not always number one: A decade ago the three leading manufacturers were Fleetwood, Champion and Oakwood, which together accounted for 44% of the output of the industry. All have since gone bankrupt. Total industry output, meanwhile, has fallen from 382,000 units in 1999 to 60,000 units in 2009.”

By the way, the industry shipped 372,000+ in 1998 – not 1999. And in 2009, the total shipments were under 50,000 homes  So, that last sentence above by Buffett has two apparent fact errors.

Figure1MobileManufacturedHomeSalesSHipmentsVsExistingingNewHouseSalesManufacturedHousingiinudstryDataMHProNews

From the National Association of Realtors.  There are a growing number of industry voices that believe that BH/CMH and MHI have by various action/inaction has kept manufactured home sales at historically low levels. The evidence is found herein and are also linked from Related Reports, further below.

 

 

The collapse of so many companies in manufactured housing has several causes, including, but not limited to, the image issues fostered by groups like MHAction. 

But cutting off capital – in the form of lending – has to be high on the list, if not on top.  High rents, high conventional housing costs, these are historic reasons for strong performance for manufactured homes. So how could MHI’s president, in the video above, say with a straight face that the industry must accept slow growth?

 

ClaytonHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEndof2011DailyBuisnessNewsMHanufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

 

The market share graphics, based upon various industry reports and sources as shown, tells the tale of how Clayton used ‘the moat‘ of financing and other tools to rapidly increase their market share.  Note that doing so arguably shrank the overall market, as it increased their market share.

 

ClaytonHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEndof2017DailyBuisnessNewsMHanufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

 

 

But because of MHI’s problematic track record, which even their former chairman Nathan Smith (above) and MHI member Frank Rolfe (below) in the videos above and below, the trends shown herein advanced.

 

ClaytonHomesSkylineChampionCavcoIndustriesMarketShareManufacturedHousingIndustryConsolidationGraphicPieChartMHProNews-e1528746976415

FrankRolfeNegativeArticlesOnIndustryNoCommentbyManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIRVHorizonsMobleHomeUniversityPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-575x132

 

 

Evidence that it isn’t just coincidence or some other mystery is found in the RV Industry’s performance during the past 2 decades. Compare their trends to that of manufactured housing during those same years.

 

RVsshipmentsTrailedMH1998WinnebagoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

That’s arguably among the reasons why industry voices, such as the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) – which focuses on federal production-related issues – has encouraged the industry’s post-production sector to organize a new post-production association.  Because MHI has failed the bulk of the industry for years.

 

MHARR Releases Study Recommending Independent Collective Representation for Post-Production Sector

 

Some in the communities side of the industry have begun to do just that, namely, create a new national MH communities group. And purportedly Berkshire-dominated MHI, not surprisingly, attacked that new communities trade group which publicly explained why they left MHI in the first place.

 

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, and Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Slam New National Manufactured Home Communities Group in Written Statement

 

The industry’s independents have witnessed thousands of firms driven out of business, or that sold out to others for less than their true value. That in turn hurts housing affordability, and thus, the nation.

It was apparently done for the sake of billions of dollars, and to grow Berkshire’s strategic moat in manufactured housing.  It’s demonstrably cost Americans trillions, using the logic of two NBER researchers.

That manufactured housing is a proven solution to the affordable housing crisis – one that is hiding in plain sight – is clear to any open-mind researcher. Manufactured homes have enjoyed political support across the left-right political divide.

 

InfographicMobileManufacturedHomeManufacturedHousingIndustryFactsDataResearchMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNews

 

But “Moat” building Warren Buffett and his minions in MHVille have debatably strangled the industry for years, costing numerous independent businesses millions per location. That monopolistic ploy in turn, for reasons previously linked, has cost Americans trillions in lost GDP.

Is MHAction, MoveOn, et al – and cutting off access to capital, while supporting candidates that support regulations that kill off small businesses – all part of Buffett’s Moat strategy?

 

WarrenBuffettTheMoatQuoteMemeManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNEws

 

The Nation, The Atlantic, GuruFocus, The Seattle Times and others have looked at various aspects of these issues, and on various aspects of the matter, they seem to think so.

But so far, only MHProNews has connected-the-dots across the left-right media divide that linked:

  • Tim Williams/21st “Smoking Gun” Letter,
  • Kevin Clayton video, where Clayton explains how “Warren” uses the Moat, nonprofits and foundations,
  • Buffett’s own annual letter,
  • to the logically avoidable collapse of thousands of manufactured home firms,
  • and now, the way that activist groups such as MHAction has harmed the industry’s image through protests and media coverage.

To date, no one else so far in mainstream media has published the details which are so Machiavellian. Or for those who love gangster movies, it’s a dramatic yet tragic scene that could come out of “The Godfather” series. If Alan Amy in the video above and others in MHVille  are right, Buffett’s lieutenants in MHVille want to “make you an offer that you can’t refuse.”

We’re told by thoughtful attorneys that RICO and antitrust issues are among the concerns they see.

It’s past time for:

  • a law-and-order minded Trump Administration,
  • state attorney generals,
  • private businesses,
  • and specialized civil attorneys,
  • to rise up and stop a corrupt ‘hiding in plain sight’ scheme.

Ending that’s monopolistic “Moat” could revive manufactured homes, and would be part of the affordable housing solutions that would collectively yield to Americans trillions of dollars.

For more details, see the related reports, above and below. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, Commentary, and analysis.).

(See Related Reports, further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachGoodBipartisanshipShouldalwaysBepredicatedBenefitallhonestindustrymembersnotslectfewquoteBy L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

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

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

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Related References:

Seattle Times -Federal Investigations-Berkshire Hathaway’s Clayton Homes, GuruFocus Spotlights Buffett’s Clayton’s “Unethical,” Monopolistic Moat

Affordable Housing, the Visible, Yet Mysterious Struggle for an Obvious Solution, Case Examples

Realtor University, Journal for the Center of Real Estate Studies, Makes Corrections– “The Market for Manufactured Homes,” by Scholastica ‘Gay’ Cororaton, CBE

Urban Institute Ask for Correction in Analysis of their Manufactured Housing Research, “Follow the Facts,” “Follow the Money”

Bloomberg “New Home for $90,000? Manufactured Housing Is Making a Comeback” Reveals MH Media Challenge

Due Credit, Warren Buffett, Media, and Manufactured Housing’s Historic Achievement

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

For newcomers to the website not familiar with modern manufactured homes, learn more by clicking the image above or the link here.

 

 

Affordable Housing, the Visible, Yet Mysterious Struggle for an Obvious Solution, Case Examples

November 10th, 2018 Comments off

AffordableHousingVisibleYetMysteriousStruggleForObviousSolutionsCaseExamples

It was then best of times,

it was the worst of times…”

–      Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities.

 

Dickens was writing about the French Revolution, but considering the famous opening to his novel, “A Tale or Two Cities,” one might believe that Nostradamus was writing about the USA today, including the struggle for affordable housing.

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,”  said George Santayana.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.[2]” wrote Dickens, according to Wikipedia.

 

In and around presumptive incoming Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s (CA-D) district of San Francisco, there is wealth and poverty. Some of the most expensive real estate in the nation is found there. The homeless defecating on the street is common enough that online maps are available identifying areas to be avoided if you don’t want  to see piles of poop, or the discarded needles of drug addicts.

Welcome to 21st century America.  It is the best and worst of times, all within blocks of each other.

 

Affordable housing is symptomatic of a variety of interrelated problems. The problems and the solutions are arguably known. Indeed, some years ago, MHLivingNews published an article with a video interview running concurrently with home tours that made the case that the solution to the affordable housing crisis is hiding in plain sight. That phrase was popular enough that others in media have used that line since.

 

“The Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis is Hiding in Plain Sight”

 

 

Solutions are known, but the problems persist. Why?

MHProNews has been peeling back layers of that puzzling onion over the course of several years. It could be summed up like this. Certain special interests believe they benefit from the current state of affairs. Since it is more than one interest group, depending on the person(s) or organization(s) they are affiliated with, they will fight on several levels to maintain a status quo that has made them millions to billions of dollars.

 

Where Bernie and the Donald Agreed

Some of the richest people on earth, our fellow Americans, are benefiting from a system that both then-presidential candidates, Bernie Sanders and Donald J. Trump, called “a rigged system.”

If the right and left both see the system as rigged, it begs the question.  Why can’t the two parties solve the issues?

Arguably, because one side benefits more from the rigged system, the other party less so. But each major party has powerful members that believe they benefit from their vision of a morphing status quo. “Draining the Swamp” created over a period of decades isn’t going to be an overnight event.  What took years to create, will take years to accomplish.

The solution always begins by understanding the true nature of the problem.

 

ProblemSolvingZigZiglarFirstStepRecognizetheProblemExistsNextIsProblemOurResponsiblityProblemSolvingVeryImportantDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Value Penguin published a useful introduction to the issue.  It was co-authored by small-town business expert Tom Egelhoff and L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, the latter is this report’s writer too.  Fear, Manufactured Homes, and a Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis is found at the link below.

 

 

That column linked above takes several expert views and facts, and makes the case that the lack of affordable housing where its needed costs the U.S. economy some $2 trillion dollars annually in lost gross domestic product (GDP).

Stop right there. Imagine what $2 trillion dollars more GDP could mean to everyday Americans. With approaching 330,000,000 people in the U.S., that would be about $6,000 per every man, woman and child. The typical family of four would average some $24,000 more per household annually.

Put differently, solving affordable housing could be a similar or greater economic stimulus than the tax cuts. And as “Fear” explains, it can all be done using existing laws. That’s the beauty of it. No need to wait years for debating a solution.

Clearly, some would benefit more, others less, from having more affordable housing. But affordable housing in or near the places where homes are needed most would unlock greater opportunities. Investors, existing housing owners, and others waiting to buy could all benefit.

All but a few would benefit from unrigging the system.

TheRentIsTooDamnHighPoliticalPullManufacturedHomeIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

This approach may be especially useful to renters. HUD Secretary Carson said several times in 2017 that renters have an average net worth of $5000. Home owners have an average worth of some $200,000.

That $195,000 difference over time for home owners represents real wealth to potentially millions of people.

 

YIMBY vs. NIMBY, Obama Admin Concept Could Unlock $1.95 Trillion Annually, HUD & MH Impact

 

But instead, there are tens of millions who are locked out of an appealing ownership opportunity by a system skewed by problematic zoning and discriminatory housing regulatory barriers.

The law of supply and demand is at work. High demand, limited supply, so prices are rising, often faster than wages.

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Collage by MHProNews.

There are protests in the streets in various places. Some carry signs proclaiming that the rent is “too damn high.” Those who protest arguably often misunderstand the true causes and logical cures.

 

Millions of minds out of ignorance and desperation turn to those who promise a purported “solution.” But the claimed “solution” of self-proclaimed “Democratic Socialists” is one proven to be false. Nevertheless, those Bernie-followers took root.

In the midterms some of those self-proclaimed Democratic Socialists won, including Senator Sanders. Sit up and take notice. Because if those growing numbers of socialists get their way, whose property will they tax and take?

Communism is the scavenger that comes when a society begins to rot from the inside,” taught the American anti-communist, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen.

Sheen grasped that free enterprise and the genius of constitutionally limited government. He supported the American Republic. His talks were educational, and listeners of all faiths – or no faith at all – made his pioneering television broadcast more popular than numerous other shows. When he was awarded the Emmy, Sheen cleverly thanked his writers, “Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.”

The genius of Sheen was blending the lessons of history and reason, working together for a better society, guided by the light of faith. He was a compelling educator.

Hold that thought. Because the path ahead for our industry and the nation is an educational one.

Education – hopefully sound information packaged in a reasonable and compelling way – is appealing.

The goal isn’t to blind political or other opponents. Rather, the wise solution is to help the uniformed or misinformed to see the light of truth. Those who grasp the truth have a duty to share it.

The alternative is a growing, dangerous, and costly chaos.

 

An eye for an eye only makes the world blind,” is one of the ways that Mahatma Ghandi is said to explain a misunderstood lesson from the book of Exodus. Ghandi and Exodus were both right, the punishment should fit the crime, but it’s better in love to avoid the crime in the first place.  That insight requires a morally informed and grounded people.

It’s an educational matter. And history tells us that like all other education, it must be a sustained effort.

 

Not Fake Nazis, the Real Deal

There are several economic and political connections with affordable housing.  Ignore that at the same peril as one ignores the law of gravity when standing at the edge of a cliff.

Lies or half-truths told often enough will convince millions. That’s been true long before Abraham Lincoln said, “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”

My parents lived in Hungary during the Nazi occupation of their country. They lived the reality of the real SS. They knew what took place in neighboring Germany that brought Adolf Hitler to power in the early 1930s. They were well educated, and knew they were getting some false news. But after the war, they told their growing family that they discovered just how much propaganda the Nazis had put forth.

The Nazis demonized their made-up boogeymen. The Nazis used brownshirts as street thugs who were their Socialist party’s political enforcers. It’s a shrewd-but-misguided modern American deception to call a Nazi a ‘right wing extremist,’ because Hitler’s minions were “National Socialists,” or “Nazi.”

Rephrased, the Nazis were from the political left.

The Nazis did not believe in a U.S.-style, constitutionally limited government. And just as Nazi Germany ended up going to war against their one-time allies against Poland, the communist (socialists) of Soviet Russia, the new socialists of our day will in time turn against their allies too. Allies of the modern left? Take notice of that historic lesson.  Once the socialists come to full power, history routinely reveals the powerful socialists in government strive to eliminate their then unnecessary allies.

The Nazis were political gangsters. What follows will be a hard set of facts for many to swallow. People are wont to change their minds, until reality makes them do so. If you can find a factual error, you’re hereby invited to send a response, and your sources for it.

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Saul Alinksy, author of Rules for Radicals, credit, Wikipedia.

The Nazis had some commonality to Saul Alinsky and his Rules for Radicals. Alinsky’s book was dedicated to Lucifer (Satan, the devil), he learned his confidence (con game) and other criminal activity from the mob. Those criminal tactics were then applied to politics.

Alinsky’s “Rules” inspired Hillary Rodham, who later became a Clinton.

In 1969, Ms. Rodham wrote a 92 page paper, says Wikipedia, on the Alinsky model, entitled “There is Only the Fight.” According to the Washington Examiner in 2012, “Obama received a comprehensive course in Saul Alinsky during his years as a community organizer in Chicago…”

 

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Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. Image credit, Pinterest.

 

From the now-defunct ACORN, which then Barry Obama did legal work on behalf of, sprang the New York Communities for Change. That in turn spawned MHAction. Welcome to the trail to an activist, left-wing opponent to our world of affordable housing. Hold that thought, we’ll return to it.

 

 

The Historic Pattern

The surprising-to-millions reality is that Democratic political operatives have used similar tactics of thuggery and de facto protection rackets for well over a century. The Klu Klux Klan (KKK) we’re racist Democrats. The KKK was the terror arm of the Democrats. Who says? Among others, an African-American Professor.

 

 

The Nazis learned what they did in part from American Democrats, sad to say.

The period of so-called “yellow journalism” in the U.S. was an element in how Democratic President Woodrow Wilson worked with enough of the U.S. newspapers to manipulate and gin up the desire for entering the war he promised to keep Americans out of. Wilson allowed the shipment of military supplies to the Allies to cross the Atlantic in passenger ships. It was only a question of time before the Germans sank one of those ships. The outcry that enthused when a ship was sunk led the U.S. population into its first Great War in Europe.

The passenger ship Lusitania was carrying munitions when it was sunk by a German submarine in May 1915, documents released by the British Government have revealed,” said Centenary News, on May 2, 2014.

The system of media and manipulation is nothing new. There are more kinds of media today than a century ago, but the principles are the same. Those who don’t learn the history of media manipulation are condemned to relive the costly lessons.

Rush Limbaugh recently celebrated 30 years on the air. His audience is up to some 26 million listeners. He’s the self-proclaimed “…big voice on the right,” for good reason. No other TV or radio audience rivals his. Rush has said time and again that conservatives and those on the right don’t think like the leaders on the political left do. That’s an important vantage-point.

 

 

Good! You See It Differently!”

Stephen Covey, author of the 7 Habits of Highly Successful People wrote, “We see the world, not as it is, but as we are──or, as we are conditioned to see it.”

Former President Barack Obama has said something similar.

If you watch Fox News, you are living on a different planet than you are if you, you know, listen to NPR,” said the Hill. “Those who watch Fox News and those who read The New York Times occupy completely different realities,” he said, adding that the network portrays him in “weird ways.”

There is some truth in what he’s [former President Obama] saying in this regard,” Fox News host Sean Hannity said. “He’s right, the mainstream media, they want to destroy [President] Trump and they loved him [former President Barack Obama]. It’s that simple.”

It is that simple, but that’s also the challenge. That’s part of the ‘tale of two cities.’ In a polarized nation, where millions believe that the leaders of the political left and their media allies are correct, and millions of others believe they are wrong, what’s to be done?

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Full Measure’s Sharyl Attiksson’s media bias chart is useful in sorting out the agendas behind various headlines and news sources. 

 

Patient, persistent, properly informed education is the answer. Limbaugh has said recently he hammers away at topics he’s covered for years, hoping to slowly win over some. Clearly, his audience growth means he’s successful at that effort. The solution in part is more of what’s proven to work, persuasive, fact-and-evidence-based educational engagement.

In writing this or any other article and report, let’s note again. If one sees a demonstrable factual error, by all means, we’ve asked readers for years to let us know. In fact, we’ve directly invited those who benefit from the purportedly rigged system in our industry, the Claytons and the Berkshire Hathaway ‘front men’ to engage in a public video recorded discussion. They have declined every time.

If the truth is on their side, why duck or dodge discussion or debate? Why would they miss an opportunity to publicly disprove or make a fool of this writer, if they can do so with facts and evidence?

But the quote in the subheading above applies. To understand another, one must meet them where they are. ‘Good, you see it differently,’ said Covey. Explain your thinking to me. Let’s examine it, together. Let’s discuss it politely and reasonably.

But that’s not what many on the left want.

Ben Shapiro offered to debate now Congressional Representative-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Cortez declined, with a dodge. If Cortez is correct and confident in her socialist views, why not debate Shapiro? It would draw millions of viewers, including many millennials. Could it be that Cortez and her leftist backers don’t want to awaken the millennials and the younger generation?

 

A Useful Hungarian Maxim – “Aki Mondta: Te Voltál, Te Vagy” – Explained 

There’s a Magyar (Hungarian) expression my parents taught us siblings. “Aki mondta: te voltál, te vagy“ It roughly means, ‘the one who is making the accusation is the party guilty of the alleged offense.’

It’s one if the oldest tricks. Let’s look at some contemporary examples.

  • Accuse your opponent of being the ‘Nazi,’ when it is the leftist side that has paid and volunteer members of thug-like misnamed AntiFa groups.  Where do you see the Tea Party, Conservatives, or Trump supporters donning masks and smashing people and property?
  • Accuse your opponent of being a racist, when the accusers themselves benefit from race-baiting.
  • Or the “Affordable Care Act,” which was not affordable medical care at all. Jon Grubber, the Architect for ObamaCare said as much. He blamed ‘the stupidity of the American voter’ for buying the ObamaCare – the ‘Affordable Care Act’ lie. Yet it was Thomas Sowell who in a single paragraph proved why it would never work, based upon simple logic.
Thomas Sowell, Ph.D. Economist, Thinker,

Collage credit, Wikipedia and MHProNews.com.

 

 

Analogies and examples are the tools needed to help people connect to realities that they don’t understand, or have been mislead into believing.  How was the action in the video above any different than what Hitler’s brownshirts behaved?

But reality-checks and patient but persistent charity must be at the core of the responses.

 

 

For instance, let’s admit that it’s true that America was imperfect from its founding. But that racial division of slavery sadly existed in every part of the world. Whites who came to the U.S. were often indentured servants for periods of some 7 years. Blacks were often lifetime ‘property’ of their owners.  But as Dinesh D’Souza correctly points out, there were free blacks too, and some of them were slave owners of other African Americans.

Tragic, but true.

America ended slavery before many other nations did. The lesson? Taking a piece of history out of context can be as bad as not knowing history at all.

Since President Abraham Lincoln, a Republican, freed the slaves – today bondage is arguably tied to economic barriers. The invisible economic bondage of manipulated capital, regulations, and laws can be as heavy a chain as the one that bolted people who knew they were captives on ships bound for America.

Don’t believe it? Tour the parts of San Francisco or other places where the addicted or other homeless live on the streets. It’s a tale of two cities, because millions failed to grasp the lessons of Hosea the Hebrew prophet, who spoke for God in saying “My people perish for a lack of understanding…” (Hosea 4:6).

 

Rachel Maddow, MSNBC and Organizing Protests 

For those on the left, former President Barack Obama is correct.  Listen to MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, and you have a very different view of national events than those who listen to Fox News.  We surf and read a range of media, so our knowledge is first hand.

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The protestors who were organized to “defend” Jeff Sessions and the Mueller probe when President Donald J. Trump fired Sessions and appointed his chief of staff to run the DOJ on an interim level.  Those protestors purportedly included those who are renters or struggling for affordable housing. Those protests are organized as a coalition of many groups – including, per sources, NY Communities for Change and MHAction – brought together in fairly rapid order by the tens, hundreds, and thousands.

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They believe that the 45th President of the United States (POTUS) Donald J. Trump is a stooge if the Russians. Never mind that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is the one that the evidence points to that has ties to the Russians, in a uranium sales deal the Clinton Foundation profited from. Never mind that the same law firm – Perkins Coie – tied to the Democratic “recount” effort in Broward County FL is the same firm that hired Fusion GPS to correct a semi-fictional “dossier” used to illicitly get an investigation of the Trump Campaign. And that in those dark crevices of the infamous dossier, are some Russians who obliquely helped the Clintons against now President Trump.

Let’s look at another item MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow retweeted.

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What is demonstrable fiction is believed as fact by millions, why? Because ‘news sources’ like MSNBC and others on the political left has said the words “Trump-Russia Collusion” so often, they won’t listen to Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, a Democrat, who said there is no such law barring what’s alleged, and there is no evidence for the claim, even if there was such a crime.  Rephrased, millions of Americans have been conned into believing something that simply isn’t real.

 RachelMaddowOhPleaseDrudgeReportDailyBusinessNEwsMHProenws

 

It’s back the principle of Hitler’s propaganda minister, Joseph Goebels, who said that ‘if you say a lie big enough, often enough, people will believe it.’ Goebbels and President Lincoln see that narrow point similarly.

Maddow used sarcasm to deflect the one line critique of the Drudge Report. But note she doesn’t really address Drudge’s point.

Note too that during that same time-frame, AntiFa protesters went to Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s home, terrorizing his wife, chanting ‘we know where you sleep,’ breaking their front door, and spray painting their logo on Carlson’s driveway. See the WaPo video, posted further above.

Maddow found time to tweet or retweet links to nationwide protests. But during that protest organizing timeframe, Maddow failed to tweet any admonishment to those AntiFa thugs.

Isn’t it hypocritical of Maddow – or her a number of her peers – to cast blame on the 45th President for his tone? Why did Maddow and so many on the left fail to verbally rebuke those who oppose the free speech rights of Carlson, with threats of violence?  Every violent act, the president has condemned.  Where is Maddow and her fellow liberals condemnation of Antifa, and what they did to Tucker Carlson’s wife?

Aki mondta: te voltál, te vagy” = ‘the one who is making the accusation is the party guilty of the alleged offense.’   The AntiFa thugs, their billionaire background backers, and media enablers may not coordinate in a smoke-filled back room. But they share a common world-view. That world view that Mr. Obama, Sean Hannity both noted is again summed up by 7 Habits author Covey like this:

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are──or, as we are conditioned to see it.”

For the facts on the multimillion money trail from men like Buffett and Soros to those who organized and run this week’s protests, see the report, linked below.

 

Prosperity Now, Protests, Indivisible Project, Warren Buffett, George Soros, POTUS Donald Trump, MHAction and Manufactured Housing – Following the Money

 

The Dots Being Connected  

Maddow likes to mock, another favorite leftist tactic my parents taught us kids to look for and be able to respond to wisely. President Trump was arguably correct in saying that Tuesday’s midterms was a victory. Each side won something. And the next two years will clarify – for those who make or share the case – why the economy fired up under POTUS Trump’s deregulation and tax cuts.

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Depending on what Democrats actually do, the economy could stall in the days ahead. If so it’s sad, avoidable, but the pivoting POTUS Trump knows how to highlight that too.

The deal making president doesn’t mind going directly to the people and making his case. If Democrats use control of the House in a way that harms U.S. safety or economics security, he can make that case and produce a full victory in 2020. The president thinks for the long run.

Democrats and progressives think long term too. Our president has shown the patience and resolve necessary to battle the left and beat them at their own game.

The Heritage Foundation said in 2014 that the cost of Democratic President Lyndon Banes Johnson’s arguably misnamed ‘Great Society’ programs has been about 22 trillion dollars. That’s roughly equal to the formal federal debt.

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Different sources, the same facts. The socialist promises are proven not to work. Why keep doing what has been proven to fail for over 50 years?

The way to end that morass is through economic growth. Only more income for more people, reducing welfare dependence, and growth in federal revenues will fix the fiscal and economic structural challenges that loom in America.  We can’t afford to become Venezuela. No one will bail the USA out if we fail.

 

Follow the Money

People like Warren Buffett and George Soros have used their money to obliquely fund groups that participated in the recent post-election protests.

Those progressive billionaires have clearly signaled that peace and bipartisanship are not their goal. It never was. Our industry’s Buffett funded Democrats for years, including candidates like Alinskyites Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

There are only a few ways that conservatives – a phrase environmentalists ought to embrace – and those who believe in Constitutionally limited government can defeat the patient, billionaire funded, media and tech giant dominated left.

  • Conservatives must prove to the masses that decades of Democratic policies have failed. The evidence is there in states likes California, and cities like San Francisco, LA, Detroit, Baltimore, Chicago or any city or state that has long run under Democratic Rule. Affordable housing, and a host of other social and economic needs, are everywhere. If their party’s principles work, just ask for proof. Where?
  • Like POTUS Trump, we must be willing to fight deceptive lies or spin with the truth and facts.
  • Those facts must be conveyed in a way that highlight the con-job of Democrats, vs. the proven reality of constitutional conservatism.
  • As a political independent, I recognize that the GOP is more right than wrong. But areas that the POTUS Trump must reach Republicans that have kept me from being one are immigration, trade and a need to avoid foreign wars whenever possible.
  • The GOP losses in the House were avoidable. The president’s press conference revelations of candidates who rejected his “embrace” – and lost – speaks to part of the path.
  • But the other part of his potentially winning coalition are those 22 million Americans who live in manufactured homes. Many already support the President, as a 2016 New York Times poll, and our own unscientific survey, revealed. The left has used MHAction and other resident activist groups to organize a growing number of manufactured home community residents. The GOP and conservative business leaders must learn to engage them successfully. Why?
  • Because they are buying leftist lies being sold by MHAction and others about rent control. It’s all a piece of the progressive cloth.
  • Had the GOP flipped more of those manufactured home owners, they could have won several more Senate seats, in 2018. What the president called his embrace, plus more manufactured home owners, would have held the House.

The Apartment List did research we will close on, but in a unique fashion. They made the case before the election that renters are more likely to vote Democratic. That also means that home owners are more likely to vote Republican.

The National Association of Realtors ™ (NAR) research by Scholastica ‘Gay’ Cororaton, Certified Business Economist (CBE), made the case that manufactured homes can and have appreciated in value. She also said that most renters could be manufactured home owners, based upon their respective incomes and costs. Cororaton also debunked several other fallacies about manufactured homes with her research, in which she kindly cited this writer in her first footnote.

 

The HUD Connection

In that same footnotes, the NAR economist also cited Mark Weiss, JD, the President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR). Weiss was cited by the Washington Post in their report about the battle over the HUD Code manufactured housing program.  WaPo essentially credited MHARR for having one Pam Danner, JD, removed from her role as administrator over the Office of Manufactured Housing Programs (OMHP).

Danner was widely seen in the industry as harmful to the manufactured housing, both by overreaching her statutory mandates, but also by failing to enforce enhanced preemption that federal law gives to manufactured homes.

By contrast, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), also cited by WaPo’s Juliet Eilperin, but not for trying to have Danner removed. In point of fact, sources tell MHProNews that it was one or more MHI insiders, backed by Clayton Homes, that pressed for Danner over attorney Victor A. DeRose, who was the official consensus candidate for the post Danner ended up getting.

In Senate testimony in the spring of 2018, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, M.D., said that the evolution from the mobile homes of the past to the manufactured homes of today was amazing.” Carson is known for that calm demeanor, but anyone who views that CSPAN video might think he was emoting.  Secretary Carson also blasted the way the regulations over manufactured homes had been handled as “ridiculous” in that same testimony. That might be construed as a quiet slap at the unnamed Danner.

But in fairness to Danner, the program has never been allowed to live up to its potential. Imagine, the most affordable housing in the nation – decades of proven safety, energy, durability, and appeal – and yet it has been arguably stifled.  Why?

The solution to the affordable housing crisis is the key to unlocking some $2 trillion dollars in more economic activity every year. That would means millions of new jobs.  Higher wages.  More home ownership.  Greater net worth for those leaving rentals. And hint-hint to the GOP and conservatives who do the educating needed, fewer renters and more Republican voters.

My circle of friends, family and associates includes numerous Democrats, Libertarians and others from across the spectrum.  Many of them are people with a great sense of conscience and true caring for others.  But that doesn’t mean that they have not been deceived.  This writer candidly admits to being misled by MHI’s true pattern of activity, which has broadened the Clayton Homes and their affiliated Berkshire Hathaway lenders and suppliers “moats.”  It was MHI themselves that finally caused me to wake up, and begin to examine what a few others had said (and I’d somehow missed) for years was going on.

 

Smoking Gun 3 – Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp Tim Williams – Manufactured Home Lending, Sales Grab?

 

Habits can do that to a person.  So, my patience must be as generous as to others as others who enlighted me have been to me.  It isn’t always easy to see that someone could be betrayed for years, but it happens.

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are──or, as we are conditioned to see it,” said Covey.

7 of the top 10 billionaires in America are pro-Democratic.  It is there absolute right to be so.  Within the boundaries of law and morality, they can do with those money as they please.

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The Democrats are not the same party that they used to be. Neither are the Republicans. Democrats have tilted socialist, and many say so openly.

 

But what an examination of the evidence reveals is this.

  • Much of the mainstream media,
  • Many in Hollywood,
  • Many in Silicon Valley,
  • Well beyond the 7 of the top 10 billionaires,

are pro-Democratic. They teach it in schools run by Democratic unions, which often used pro-progressive agenda approved textbooks. This isn’t conspiracy, this is demonstrable fact.  To disguise the reality, we’ve been told by left-leaning media for years about the horrible Koch Brothers, who are only 2 of the top 10 billionaires, and not the top 2.

The deck is stacked. The system is rigged.

#DeFangBM

 

Manufactured homes isn’t a one size fits all solution to every problem.  But just as protecting the first and second amendment – along with the others – is routinely useful and good, so too is protecting the right of the people to buy and own the kind of home they want to on their own land, or land they acquire.  It is amazing how the left can hypocritically push “choice” when it comes to unborn human life, but be anti-choice when it comes to practical ways to advance affordable manufactured homes.

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For newcomers to the website not familiar with modern manufactured homes, learn more by clicking the image above or the link here.

What is wrong is that we do not ask what is right.” observed G.K. Chesterton.

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing,” said Edmund Burke.

Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts,” said Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

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Trulia research in 2017 revealed that affordable homes by neighboring conventional housing doesn’t impact value.

 

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HUD Commissioned research in 2011 revealed that manufactured homes sited next to conventional housing both appreciated, side by side.

There are mountains of evidence from Harvard, the Ford Foundation, the Fannie Mae Foundation, NAR, HUD, and others that support the value of modern manufactured homes.  But the keys are these. The laws to help make those affordable homes available for infill on homesites across the nation is the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000.  It gives enhanced preemption.  Locals can’t zone HUD Code manufactured homes out, yet have been allowed to do so for decades.

Local zoning officials when they do, routinely do so based upon misinformation.  That’s why education, education, education is a key for the next two years.

The Trump Administration has the power to enforce the law. Will they have the political will and wisdom to do so?  The financing is also there, made possible by the Duty to Serve Manufactured Housing mandated by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) of 2008.  FHA, VA, and the USDA also have federally backed loan programs that if properly used could turn millions of renters into home owners.

With 8.3 million housing units needed just to catch up, per NAR’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, the logic of the matter is powerful.  Many of those who once owned conventional housing now own a manufactured home.  Those former conventional housing owners routinely sing the praises of their new federally regulated homes, that the U.S. Census Bureau says costs half as much as conventional housing.

It’s time to let the law work.

It’s time to let common sense and the evidence be put to work, to educate others as to why some are allowed to suffer, while purportedly manipulative billionaires maneuver media, money, and authorities in ways that the common person can’t.

 

Two Great Laws Already on the Books NOW,  Can Unlock Billion$ Annually for Manufactured Housing Industry Businesse$, Investor$

 

Equal justice under the law – applying the laws fairly to all – are principles that should unite about 75 percent of the nation, perhaps more. In the era of POTUS Trump, it is conceivable. Time will tell if it happens, and if it doesn’t why it doesn’t.

 

Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, a Novel Yet Proven Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis That Will Create Opportunities, Based Upon Existing Laws

 

History is there to inform us.  The tale of two cities could come to a happy halt in America, given the right leadership. May God awaken, bless, and guide, a renewed American Dream. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, Commentary, and analysis.).

(See Related Reports, further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachGoodBipartisanshipShouldalwaysBepredicatedBenefitallhonestindustrymembersnotslectfewquoteBy L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

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

Office 863-213-4090 |Connect on LinkedIn:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach

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Related References:

Manufactured Home Resident Group President Cautions Against MHAction, Surprising Background Reveal to Manufactured Housing Action

“The Creepy Line” Video DocuDrama, Manufactured Housing – The Problem, Solution, and You

 

“I knew right from the beginning.” When President Trump, First Lady Melania, VP Pence Toured Manufactured Home Community

 

FEDs, MHI, Buffett’s Berkshire’s Clayton Homes Moat, Affordable Housing, and Billion$ in Manufactured Home Market Manipulation

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) PAC Supports Former Hillary Clinton VP, Senator Tim Kaine, Other Anti-Trump Agenda Democrats

 

Acclaimed Poverty Inc. Video, MHVille – Why Left & Right Should Listen, Learn From Each Other

 

Universal Basic Income-The Evolution of Poverty Pimping?

 

 

 

 

Expose! Why Has Warren Buffett/BH Funded Anti-MHC Activists, MHAction? Why Fund Attacks on ELS, Frank Rolfe, Blackstone Group?

October 20th, 2018 Comments off

 

ExposeWyWarrenBuffettFundedAntiMHCactivistsMHActionWhyFundAttacksELSFrankeRolfeBlackstoneGroupClayton21stVanderbiltLogoManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction.

 

On the surface, it sounds preposterous.

Or even bizarre.

Why would billionaire Warren Buffett, his family, and related foundations make ‘charitable’ contributions of Berkshire Hathaway stocks, cash, and/or grants to a left-wing activist-organizations that in turn paid MHAction, which disrupted HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s address to the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)?

 

WarrenBuffettGeorgeSorosPhotosHUDSecBenCarsonTidesFoundationLogoMHActionLogoMHActionProtestorPhotoManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews600

 

 

That’s where the news tip, facts, and evidence point to – in what could develop into the biggest manufactured housing exposé since Smoking Gun 3.

It was a resident group member that tipped the Daily Business News on MHProNews to the statements by the president of the Golden State Manufactured-Home Owner League (GSMOL) that MHAction – Manufactured Housing Action – was getting funding from the Tides Foundation.

 

NovoFoundationWarrenBuffettTidesFoundationFundsMHActionManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Among the donors to the leftist Tides?

The NoVo Foundation, with Warren’s son Peter and his wife as organization’s Co-Presidents. In the year shown, Buffett backed NoVo Foundation gave millions of dollars toward the Tides.  See that new report on MHLivingNews, at the link below.

 

Manufactured Home Resident Group President Cautions Against MHAction, Surprising Background Reveal to Manufactured Housing Action

 

The Tides in turn gave to MHAction, stated the GSMOL President Michelle Smith.

Smith blasted MHAction for trying to wrongfully take credit for work that they – GSMOL – had in fact done.

What Smith didn’t say was the “dark money” trail from Buffett – who’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate owns Clayton Homes, 21st and Vanderbilt, among several other firms connected to manufactured housing – has purportedly funded MHAction.

 

WarrenBuffettGeorgeSorosTheTidesMHActionDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

But Tides and groups funded by Buffett and billionaire George Soros haven’t funded through intermediaries  MHAction alone.  There are other radical activist groups that have been funded too.

We didn’t want the details to leak before publishing this, but soon plan to ask how

  1. Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS),
  2. “Frank & Dave,” RVHorizons, and Mobile Home University (MHU),
  3. or the Blackstone Group

feel about having Berkshire money flowing into anti-business protests that have been aimed at them?

MHAction, as MHProNews has previously reported, protested each of those groups. See the video above for one example, with more in the related reports, further below the by line.

Further, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has elevated Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA-D).  Warren, was a keynote for an MHAction and other radical activist groups address.

 

Facts & Analysis – Senator Elizabeth Warren re: Manufactured Housing Institute Memo to MHI Members, 10-3-2018

 

‘Pay More Attention to what People Do…’ and ‘Follow the Money.’ 

You decide if Marty Lavin’s dictum applies.

 

WarrenBuffettTidesFoundationTheMoatBerkshireHathawayBrandsNAIWellsFargoClaytonHomes21stMortgageManufacturedHousingInstitute

 

FollowThe MoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDothanwhatTheySaySpySea72MartyLavinYachtManufacturedHousingINdustryProMHProNews

Ask yourself. Do these Marty Lavin dictums apply in these cases?  Some of the same people who make left-wing protests against ‘capitalists’ are funded by left-wing billionaires.  Can you spell ‘head fake?’  Can you spell ‘con game?’

 

 

GeorgeSorosWarrenBuffettTidesFoundationAntiFaBarackObamaNYCommunitiesforChangeLogoMHActionLogoMoveonLogo

 

 

Where’s the Logic?

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MHAction – through the Tides Foundations, and via other mechanisms – are connected

  • to Black Lives Matter,
  • New York Communities for Change (NYCC),
    AntiFa (so-called Antifascists, who ironically use the brownshirt and violent tactics that fascists used),
  • and other radical – sometimes violent and destructive  – groups.  It should be noted that NYCC and others spun off from ACORN, which was disbanded after allegations of voter fraud, and other illegalities surfaced.

The above facts appears to confirm the oblique links between Buffett’s billions and those of left-wing activist billionaire, George Soros.

 

 

GSMOL, Other Resident Groups Should Be Disturbed

It’s no secret that the Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (WHA) and GSMOL are often at loggerheads with each other.

But are each group missing something in this revelation?

How is it that Democrats are getting backers like:

  • billionaires Buffett and Soros,
  • state resident groups are also often backing Democratic candidates?
  • In California, sources say that the WMA backs Democrats too.
  • Who is fooling whom?

 

MarketWatch Reports Warren Buffett’s Midterm Campaign Contributions

 

When you look at the pieces of the puzzle, it makes you think back to corruption of Tammany Hall,” said L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, publisher of MHProNews, manufactured home industry consultant, service provider, and expert.

 

TammanyHallRobberBaronsBuffettsBerkshireBHMediaGroupManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

How is it that members of the Delaware Manufactured Home Owners Association (DMHOA) failed to realize the import of their own statements? Didn’t they realize that Democrats have the lion share of the PAC money in the U.S., and apparently in their state?

 

LATonyKovachGoodBipartisanshipShouldalwaysBepredicatedBenefitallhonestindustrymembersnotslectfewquote

The comment above was said with respect to another recent topic, but relates to this issue too.

 

Why are there so many cases of both residents and industry insiders backing the same party’s candidates?

 

MH Communities, Owners, MH Independents Alert – NMHOA and MHAction Next Steps? – Part 1

 

Paying to Stir Up Trouble…

Manufactured housing is a microcosm of what is taking place in other parts of the national scene.  There are paid agitators in Washington, D.C. and other places. There are organizations that have formed with money from billionaires and others that are organizing the protests that disrupted

 

 

More on this in the days ahead. But suffice it to say for today that the billionaires are paying to stir up trouble for the members of the industry on several levels.

Part of the image issue of our industry is fueled by the protests of MHAction and others.  That impacts not only those who are being protested, but arguably, the industry at large.

And the party that Buffett and Soros backs are the Democrats.  The Democrats are the ‘beneficiaries’ of AntiFa and related groups, that operate similarly to how MHAction are being used in MHVille. In fact, as a prior report revealed, MHAction attends other leftist groups protests, and vice versa.

Where is MHI on this?  Oh, yes, pardon me.  They are being funded by Berkshire Hathaway too.

On MHProNews, we follow the leads, evidence, tips, and money.

 

Clayton Homes and 21st Mortgage’s Manufactured Housing “Spies”

 

So that manufactured housing industry professionals can be alert to the kinds of purported schemes that cost thousands of professionals their businesses, that either sold for a discount, or were closed and lost. See the related reports, linked further below. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

GIGO, Esther Sullivan, Clayton Homes, Boston Globe, GSMOL on ‘Manufactured Insecurity-Mobile Home Parks and Americans’ Tenuous Right to Place’

 

“Results vs. Resistance,” Cutting Fog with Facts for MHVille

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Danny Glover, Presidents Barack Obama & Donald Trump, Promises Kept, and Affordable Manufactured Housing

“I knew right from the beginning.” When President Trump, First Lady Melania, VP Pence Toured Manufactured Home Community