21 October 2050

The First

I have a problem with people who wear their hearts on their sleeves, their political opinions on their t-shirts, or stickers on their cars that tell me there's a baby on board - the problem is, I don't give a fuck. I don't know you and you don't know me, and therefore I don't care whom you love, for whom you vote, or whether you've reproduced. Generally speaking, I avoid running my car into the car in front of me, and it makes no difference whether there's a baby on board or a granny in the boot. I like my car.

So ... I've resisted (for such a long time) doing anything like a blog. The assumption that the minutiae of one's life are going to interest anyone but one's nearest and dearest - arrogance, conceit. To use a blog to communicate with one's nearest and dearest - plain sad. But through my business (and here's the first plug - you'll see many more - Cyberscraps) - I send out a newsletter, and I so often want to say something - something personal, something rude, something outrageous - and I have to bite my tongue, so I've succumbed and here's the place where I'm going to indulge my verbal diarrhoea and let it all hang out.

I'd like to be able to categorise my posts (because that's the way my mind works - here's the first thing you should know about me - I keep my many spices in alphabetical order) - and if I can't, I may have to find another forum, but for now this is where I am.

I have no idea why you're reading this. Let's face it, sunshine, I have no idea who you are. It would be nice if you find something that makes you think off your usual track (I LOVE finding things that make me think off my usual track), or maybe you'll find something moderately entertaining, or perhaps I'll say something that makes you mad.

Nothing more I want to say right this minute. Oh yes:

Vicar is checking into a hotel. Says to the receptionist, "I hope the porn channel in my room is disabled". Receptionist replies, "No, sir, it's just ordinary porn - you sick bastard".

20 October 2050

Sub-prime loans

You understand what sub-prime lending is, right? Just in case you don't, here's a quick overview. In Australia, if I go to a bank and ask to borrow some money, they'll want to know about my assets (what I earn, what I own) and my liabilities (what I owe). They'll then decide, based on that info, whether I can repay the loan. If I can, they'll lend me the dosh, otherwise - stiff shit. In the US, that's what they call a prime loan - lending money to a person who's likely to be able to meet the repayments. A sub-prime loan is lending money to people who may not be able to repay the loan.

So now you're asking yourself why would a bank/financial institution lend money to someone who can't repay the loan.

Let's say that Fred earns very little money, owes stacks on his credit card, and wants to buy a house currently valued at $200,000. The financiers offer him the entire $200,000 - no deposit, at 10% (a higher interest rate than a prime borrower because he's a crap risk). Why on earth would they do that? They do that because they're pretty certain that Fred will make the first few payments (at a higher interest rate than their prime borrowers), then default (not be able to make any more payments), at which stage they repossess the house, sell it for $200,000 (and I bet they lend the next suckers the money), and they're winners. Of course, that only works if the house sells for its original loan value of $200,000 - if it sells for, say, $180,000 (or if it doesn't sell at all) then the lender loses money (and don't forget Fred - he's homeless and has nothing to show for his few repayments). And that's how the Americans have fucked the global economy.

America sneezes, the world catches cold.

Got it?

So WHY THE FUCK are there ads on Australian TV offering to lend money to people who have poor credit ratings or who have been refused loans by banks.

Blaaah. Sometimes the stupidity blows my mind.