Saturday, June 4, 2011

Talking the talk, walking the walk...............

The Realtor community seems to follow its own advice about
the value of owning a home.




















This chart below had me scratching my head, until I
remembered that 90% of the Realtor community does not sell
commercial, or investment, property. 



















Thanks Agent Genius

Unchaining the melody...........







More linky goodness

Seth on raising the bar................
Simple. This is the post-industrial era. Success is not about speeding up the assembly line as much as it relies on individuals able to create leaps forward. The person capable of doing that sort of work is in far higher demand than ever before.

Penelope on how to find satisfying work..........
satisfying work is the intersection of what what you like to do, what you are good at, and what an organization values............the most important things we need for job satisfaction are meaningful work, responsibility, and knowledge of the outcome..........We would each like to think that we are above choosing careers based on how people think of us. But studies show that the prestige of a career matters more than the money earned from that career. This makes sense to me because when I tell people I'm a writer, they are impressed, and when I tell people I'm a blogger, they think I'm unemployed. So I usually say I'm a writer.

Michael with "It's odd, but...." observations.............
We don't manage time so much as we invest it.

Kurt in praise of pen and paper...............
I keep handwritten notes from my Grandmother, mother and father, the site of which can bring me to tears. The messages combined with the fluid handwriting of my mother or grandmother take me instantly back to my childhood. The artistic ink scratches and "thanks" from my father still bring a smile to my face. No digital email or even typed letter can match this analog combination sight and feel and message.

Soul food..........................














here, here, and here for starters.  Thanks Rob.

Friday, June 3, 2011

The death of a dream?

Walter Russell Mead, one of my favorite essayists, seems a bit
depressed about the state of our housing market. Here.  He sees
ramifications extending well beyond falling prices and underwater
mortgages.

"The latest downturn in the housing market is one more grim signal that in its current form, the American Dream is going the way of the dodo."

"But something has, I think, changed. Something big. Humpty Dumpty has fallen off the wall. A social ideal has received a irrecoverable blow."

The psychology of our real estate markets has been problematic ever since I first got my license in 1977.  (Don't blame me, I'm sure the timing is just coincidental.) 

When my parents bought their first house in 1953, they did so for two main reasons.  One, they wanted to raise their two kids in a non-urban environment.  Two, they wanted to garden.  So they left their third floor walk-up apartment at 23rd and Delancy near downtown Philadelphia and bought a house about seven miles west in the Borough of Narberth.

Seven years later, when they sold this house to purchase their second (and final) house (bigger space to raise growing kids and way bigger space to garden), they were pleased to be able to sell and pay the Realtor's fee without actually losing any money.  The idea that the first house would dramatically increase in value in seven years never entered their minds.  That just wasn't how it worked. 

Maybe my parents were extraordinarily prudent people, but in 1973, they paid off the mortgage on the second house.  I read the mortgage a year or so ago while looking through some of Dad's old papers.  It was set up with a 17 year amortization.  He paid it off in 13.  The house to him was not a financial investment, it was home - the center of our family's universe.  No one was more surprised than my parents to discover that the home they paid $37,500 for in 1960 was worth twenty times that in 1995. 

I had only been selling homes for about a year when one of our competitors ran a newspaper ad extolling the benefits of buying a house NOW because prices were going up (in our market anyway) 10% per year.  Our competitor then showed the impact of compounding annual 10% increases for ten years.  The small voice in the back of my head said, "that's not sustainable."  A few years pass and Ronald Reagan appoints Paul Volcker to head the Fed.  Volcker unfettered interest rates and 10% increases in property values became a fading, even if seductive, memory.  Volcker's era passed with the psychology of 10% property inflation temporarily broken.  But, demographics being what they are, as the baby boomers became parents and started raising their own families, the rising tide of buyers provided for a steady, not steep, but steady increase in housing valuations.

So, my generation, our minds boggled by many things, including watching our parents net worth skyrocket because of their home equity, unthinkingly assumed this was the natural order of things.  Housing prices always went up.  Buy now, buy big, buy more than you can afford.  Prices always go up.  God bless the housing market.

All was well and good...........for a while.  Once upon a time, rapidly rising prices would cause a shortage of buyers.  A shortage of buyers acted as sort of a governor on the market, slowing it down, slowing down the rate of increasing prices. Unfortunately, by 2002, our entire economy had hitched itself to the housing industry.  Had to.  The old automotive/industrial complex had taken a beating, the dotcom bubble had burst, housing starts,  rising home values, and real estate development became the engine driving our economy.  Bad choice.

On Wall Street, the rocket scientists devised ever more clever ways to provide cheap and readily available
mortgage financing.  Like kids in a candy shop, way too many people succumbed to the temptation of the easy money and either bought way more house than they could afford, or stripped the equity out of their house to finance a "life style."  The house as an ATM machine is just a bad idea.

Using a tool for a purpose for which it was not designed may offer a clever short term solution to a problem.  Using a tool for a purpose for which it was not designed will, over the long haul, invariably lead to a bad outcome.

Prices that rise to unsustainable levels always fall back to sustainable levels.  If we are patient, we will discover what  "sustainable" is.

I don't know if WRM's analysis of the "death of a dream" is accurate or not.  I do know that the psychology of the housing market has changed dramatically.  While adjustments are often painful, and this one certainly has been, the return of the idea that a house is primarily a home that may, or may not, become an investment seems a lot healthier long term than the "irrational exuberance" of the bubble years.

Linky goodness.................

Tom Asacker on being the best for.....
Value is beyond better. This isn’t about being better. Better is something that can be rationally teased   apart and quickly duplicated. This is about being different and unreasonable in ways, large and small, ways that assert integrity of purpose and add value to the lives of your audience. It’s about being the best for them.

David Brooks imagines a commencement address......
College grads are often sent out into the world amid rapturous talk of limitless possibilities. But this talk is of no help to the central business of adulthood, finding serious things to tie yourself down to. The successful young adult is beginning to make sacred commitments — to a spouse, a community and calling — yet mostly hears about freedom and autonomy.

Megan McArdle on co-signing for a loan.................
If you can't afford to pay off the loan, then--no matter how much you love them, how great your need, or how much you want to believe they will pay--you must "just say no".

According to the FTC, depending on the type of the loan, as many as three out of four primary borrowers default on their obligations, leaving the cosigner to pay. This is, after all, why they need a cosigner: they're not good credit risks, either because they have too much debt already, or because they don't pay their bills on time.


The KCM crew on the Youtube generation's low boredom threshold - we need to be entertained even when searching for a home................
Static print advertising is a waste of money for the vast portion of the population. If people want to buy something, they don’t look at the classifieds anymore, they scour the web. They go to eBay-like sites for consumer goods, and they go to Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com-type sites for homes. When they get there, they are quickly bored by still photos. They want video!

Who's gambling now........

















Steven Levitt and Thomas Miles used evidence from the play in
the 2009 and 2010 World Series of Poker to determine if poker
is a game of skill or just a game of luck.  Their results, and I
would concur after observing the results of our monthly "poker
club," indicate that skilled players do consistently better.

The Economist's article on the subject, which includes a not-so-
subtle dig at mutual fund managers, hereExcerpt here:

Those who had done well before did well in 2010, too. Whereas ordinary players made a loss of 15.6%, the skilled made a return on investment of 30.5%, suggesting that poker is after all a game of skill. The economists say that similar tests of persistence in returns have also been used to detect whether mutual-fund managers have genuine expertise. In contrast to the case of poker, they point out, those tests have tended to find “little evidence of skill in this domain”.

photo courtesy of the gold shaft

"...rolling with the dice...."

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Fun with numbers..........

Recent headlines from the AGbeat:

Realtors work harder for less money – averaging 260 hours
per transaction.

As it has been in years past, most agents cite a work week of
40 hours, despite public perception of the agent who leaves
the office at lunch, has a margarita and goes home.

This year’s NAR Member Profile reveals considerable trends
in the real estate industry and in 2010, the average agent
(residential and commercial) had eight transactions.
 
40 hours per week times 52 weeks equals 2,080 hours divided
by 8 transactions equals 260 hours per transaction.  I suppose
it is one way to look at it, but I'm pretty sure that is not how it
really works. 
 
If one added up all the hours this Realtor squandered chasing
impossible deals and working over-priced listings......well,
never mind, there are no do-overs.  Just trying not to do so
much of it these days.
 
All I know for certain is that while commission sales people
can generate significant income, the ownership of investment
real estate over a long time period is a much better path to
creating true economic wealth.

As commencement addresses go.....................

.................this one is pretty good.  U. S. Secretary of Defense
Robert Gates addresses the midshipmen at the U. S. Naval
Academy.  His thoughts on "leadership" are well worth the time. 
Read it here, excerpts below, or watch it here:



"For starters, great leaders must have vision – the ability to get your eyes off your shoelaces at every level of rank and responsibility, and see beyond the day-to-day tasks and problems. To be able to look beyond tomorrow and discern a world of possibilities and potential. How do you take any outfit to a higher level of excellence? You must see what others do not or cannot, and then be prepared to act on your vision.

"An additional quality necessary for leadership is deep conviction. True leadership is a fire in the mind that transforms all who feel its warmth, that transfixes all who see its shining light in the eyes of a man or woman. It is a strength of purpose and belief in a cause that reaches out to others, touches their hearts, and makes them eager to follow.

"Self-confidence is still another quality of leadership. Not the chest-thumping, strutting egotism we see and read about all the time. Rather, it is the quiet self-assurance that allows a leader to give others both real responsibility and real credit for success. The ability to stand in the shadow and let others receive attention and accolades. A leader is able to make decisions but then delegate and trust others to make things happen. This doesn’t mean turning your back after making a decision and hoping for the best. It does mean trusting in people at the same time you hold them accountable. The bottom line: a self-confident leader doesn’t cast such a large shadow that no one else can grow.

"A further quality of leadership is courage: not just the physical courage of the seas, of the skies and of the trenches, but moral courage. The courage to chart a new course; the courage to do what is right and not just what is popular; the courage to stand alone; the courage to act; the courage as a military officer to “speak truth to power.

"In most academic curricula today, and in most business, government, and military training programs, there is great emphasis on team-building, on working together, on building consensus, on group dynamics. You have learned a lot about that. But, for everyone who would become a leader, the time will inevitably come when you must stand alone. When alone you must say, “This is wrong” or “I disagree with all of you and, because I have the responsibility, this is what we will do.” Don’t kid yourself – that takes real courage.

"Another essential quality of leadership is integrity. Without this, real leadership is not possible. Nowadays, it seems like integrity – or honor or character – is kind of quaint, a curious, old-fashioned notion. We read of too many successful and intelligent people in and out of government who succumb to the easy wrong rather than the hard right – whether from inattention or a sense of entitlement, the notion that rules are not for them. But for a real leader, personal virtues – self-reliance, self control, honor, truthfulness, morality – are absolute. These are the building blocks of character, of integrity – and only on that foundation can real leadership be built.

"A final quality of real leadership, I believe, is simply common decency: treating those around you – and, above all, your subordinates – with fairness and respect. An acid test of leadership is how you treat those you outrank, or as President Truman once said, “how you treat those who can’t talk back.

"Whatever your military specialty might be, use your authority over others for constructive purposes, to help them – to watch out and care for them and their families, to help them improve their skills and advance, to ease their hardships whenever possible. All of this can be done without compromising discipline or mission or authority. Common decency builds respect and, in a democratic society, respect is what prompts people to give their all for a leader, even at great personal sacrifice."

Thanks Jim

On humor..............










     "Humor is quite different from ridicule or malice as it is
compassionate in that it accepts human limitations and
foibles as being intrinsic.  It therefore assists 'wearing the
world like a light garment' and illustrates that in being like
the reed that bends in the wind, one survives instead of
being broken down by rigidity.
     "The relief of laughter via a joke expresses the pleasure
at dissolution of conflict, and the capacity to laugh at
oneself is essential to positive self-esteem.  To respond to
everything as though it were highly important is as a
result of the vanity of the narcissistic core of the ego.
Humor recontextualizes experiences and events and thus
facilitates enjoyment without moralistic judgmentalism.
Humor evolves as philosophical acceptance and has a
healing effect.  It thereby decreases suffering, conflict,
and negative emotions..
     "Life presents endless ambiguities that, without humor,
are not resolvable.  Judiciously used, humor via acceptance
leads to peace and an increased capacity for adaptation
rather than frustrated resentment of defeatism.  By humor,
we rise above circumstances and retain inner dignity
instead of shame, anger, resentment, or lowered self-
esteem.  Humor also facilitates wisdom in that it
recontextualizes human frailties as being intrinsic to
the human condition itself and therefore not primarily
personal."

-David R, Hawkins  Reality, Spirituality, and Modern Man

Checking in with the Mighty E............

Eclecticity offers 11 tips from David Packard on how to play
well with others.  Post here.  Excerpt here:

6. Avoid openly trying to reform people. Every man knows he is imperfect, but he doesn't want someone else trying to correct his faults. If you want to improve a person, help him to embrace a higher working goal — a standard, an ideal — and he will do his own "making over" far more effectively than you can do it for him.


The Mighty E., always a source for great music, then
shares a 1981 classic from the Commodores.  Reminded
me of this VERY interesting Lionel Richie video:

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The darkest hours are just before dawn?

The Economist magazine sees signs of hope for the U. S.
housing market even as the naysayers are predicting more
trouble.

One reason for their guarded optimism is the evolving relation-
ship between housing prices and rents.  As shown on this
chart, we are back the pre-bubble ratios:


















Full post from the Economist here.  Excerpt here:

"But there are signs this may be the darkest hour just before the dawn. House-ownership is beginning to look more affordable by many measures. Adjusted for inflation, prices are close to their long-term trend after the bubble years of the 1990s and the first years of the 2000s. And the ratio of house prices to rents has returned to its pre-bubble level (see chart).

"Other numbers are looking a lot better. Vacancies for apartments tumbled in the first quarter of the year and are now at a three-year low. Rents have been rising, and analysts expect them to increase by over 4% this year and next. Rent rises typically support house prices by making home-ownership more attractive."

Thinking there is a lesson here...........

"Unlike parties of the left in Britain or Germany, France's
Socialists have yet to digest the sour reality that wealth
needs to be created before it can be distributed."
-The Economist

June 1, 1967....................

Turning the music world upside down.............again.






God love 'em.

Street theatre......................

Clever entertainment for those willing to be entertained.
My favorite part is when the miming saxophonist gets tipped.



thanks mashable

Still tilting at windmills........
























When I see the spirit of liberty in action, I see a strong principle at work; and this, for a while, is all I can possibly know of it. The wild gas, the fixed air is plainly broke loose: but we ought to suspend our judgments until the first effervescence is a little subsided, till the liquor is cleared, and until we see something deeper than the agitation of the troubled and frothy surface. I must be tolerably sure, before venture publicly to congratulate men on a blessing, that they have really received one. Flattery corrupts both the receiver and the giver; and adulation is not of more service to the people than to kings. I should therefore suspend my congratulations on the new liberty of France, until I was informed how it had been combined with government; with public force; with the discipline and obedience of armies; with the collection of an effective and well-distributed revenue; with the solidity for property; with peace in order; with civil and social manners. All these (in their way) are good things to; and, without them, liberty is not a benefit while it lasts, and is not likely to continue long. The effect of liberty to individuals is, that they may do what they please: we ought to see what it will please them to do, before we risk congratulations, which may soon be turned into complaints. Prudence would dictate this in the case of separate insulated private men; but liberty, when men act in bodies, is power. Considerate people, before they declare themselves, will observe the use which is made of power; and particularly of so trying a thing as new power in new persons, of whose principals, tempers, and dispositions, they have little or no experience, and in situations where those who appear the most stirring in the scene may possibly not be the real movers. . . .

The age of chivalry is gone. -- That of sophisters, economists, and calculators, has succeeded; and the glory of Europe is extinguished forever.

Reflections on the Revolution in France, Edmund Burke
1790

Thanks for the quote Nicholas

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A great time to be a landlord..............
















From Bill McBride's wonderful Calculated Risk blog:

“The emotional scars left by the collapse are changing the American psyche,” said Pete Flint, chief executive of the housing Web site Trulia. “There was a time when owning a home was a symbol you had made it. Now it’s O.K. not to own.”

Trulia, a real estate search engine for buyers and renters ... is a hive of renters, including Mr. Flint. “I’m in no rush at all to buy,” he said.

Tim Hebb, a Los Angeles systems engineer ... sold his bungalow in August 2006, then leased it back for a year. Since then [he] rented a succession of apartments.

“I have flirted with buying again many times over the past few years,” said Mr. Hebb. “Let’s face it, people are not rational creatures.”

“We have more of what we call ‘renters by choice’ than I’ve seen in the 40 years I’ve been in the apartment business,” said Jeffrey I. Friedman, chief executive of [Associated Estates Realty Corporation, which owns 13,000 apartments in Georgia, Indiana, Michigan and other Midwest and Southeast states]

Susan Lindsey, a San Diego software programmer, was once eagerly waiting for the housing market to crash. She said she would have no guilt about swooping in on some foreclosed owner who had bought a place he could not afford.


With prices now down by a third, however, she is content to stay in her $2,500-a-month rental.

Let's see.   Prices are down.  Recovery is recovering.  Lots of
inventory to choose from.  Interest rates are low.  A giant pool
of renters to choose from.  Sure looks like a great time to be
investing in single family homes to rent.

Am I missing something here?


Thanks Cutcaster for the photo

Whither go commercial values.....?

It can get confusing.   Here are two charts, provided by Professor
Green, giving very different answers:

                                   Prices still falling.



Prices rising.











Some thoughts from the cheap seats:

The first rule in real estate is that markets are local markets. With
the exception of  single tenant net leased investment real estate,
there is no national real estate market.  So, your results may vary.

Professor Green explains in his post the reason for the variance
in the two charts.  Essentially they are measuring different things,
not an untypical problem in our industry.

In our world, investment property is valued by first determining
the net operating income (NOI) it generates, and secondly,
deciphering the risk associated with maintaining that income
stream over a long period of time (return on investment) as well
as the risk associated with getting all of your money back
(return of investment).

Our sense of the tertiary markets, like Licking County, is that
rents have begun to stabilize from their 2007-2009 free fall. 
Therefore, the NOIs have begun to stabilize and even increase. 

So, our answer is that commercial values are going sideways
for a while.  They are not going up, but they have stopped
falling.  There are bargains to be had for the careful buyer.

For what it is worth, people still seem willing to overpay for
single tenant net leased property.  If you have one, its a good
market to sell into.

Four friends................."living still"................

Asian Carp............

The invasion of the Asian carp seems unstoppable.  Accidentally
released from catfish ponds in Arkansas over a decade ago, the
prolific and feisty carp is steadily moving northward up the
Mississippi and its tributaries.  The Great Lakes are threatened.

Some people are taking action:


thanks as always to the BSBB

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day....................

........the holiday honoring those members of our Armed Services
who have died in service to our Country.

There are several sites honoring American war dead that have,
for me anyway, taken on an aura of sacredness.  Take your
breath away stuff.

The first:
Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial on the Normandy
coast in France.  The cemetery contains the remains of over
9,000 American soldiers who lost their lives during both the
Normandy invasion and the ensuing battle to free France from
Nazi control.  At one end of the cemetery is the Memorial Wall
with the names of over 1,500 American soldiers who died
during the fighting, but whose bodies were never found or
identified.  The photo below gives a sense of the scope of the
cemetery and memorial.  My father landed in France on D-Day
plus 3.  Visiting the memorial and wandering over to see the
steep bluff overlooking the beach, two thoughts immediately
emerged. "They had to climb that!" and "Thank God dad
landed on the third day after the initial assault."


















A view of the cemetery looking towards the Chapel













Normandy American Cemetery scene from Saving Private
Ryan.  Always brings tears.





The second:
The Vietnam War Memorial in Washington D.C.  The stark
simplicity speaks volumes of the sacrifices made (which were
very much unappreciated at the time) by those G.I.s who
served in Vietnam.  58,195 names.









































Thank you all.

A Poem for Monday (Memorial Day)

I shot a man yesterday
And much to my surprise,
The strangest thing happened to me
I began to cry.

He was so young, so very young
And Fear was in his eyes,
He had left his home in Germany
And came to Holland to die.

And what about his Family
were they not praying for him?
Thank God they couldn't see their son
And the man that had murdered him.

I knelt beside him
And held his hand--
I begged his forgiveness
Did he understand?

It was the War
And he was the enemy
If I hadn't shot him
He would have shot me.

I saw he was dying
And I called him "Brother"
But he gasped out one word
And that word was "Mother."

I shot a man yesterday
And much to surprise
A part of me died with Him
When Death came to close
His eyes.

-James Lenihan

"James Lenihan fought in Europe during World War II as a sergeant in the 104th Infantry Division. His son remembered him as a "tough customer" who didn't seem haunted by the war. So he was surprised when, sorting through his father's basement, he found a poem about his father's struggle to cope with killing a German soldier. He'd never known him to write any others."


Thanks John

Listening to learn.................



















Jeff Turner continues his five part series on Listening - here.
This installment, the fourth, is titled Listening to Learn
Excerpt here:

"Listening to learn is about you engaging others. Actively.
Success in any business is about building stronger
relationships. It’s about increasing your influence. When we
truly engage with those who are speaking with us, when we
take the time to go deeper and seek understanding and
meaning, we accomplish both.

"This is the listener’s responsibility. Are you a listener?"

Working on it.

Chives here................................

The Senior Prom was once a big deal.  Apparently, it still is.
Son Connor, who graduated from high school yesterday - Yea
Conner!, asked for a suitably impressive ride to the big dance a
few weeks ago. Something large enough for the rest of his crew
would be nice too.  A few phone calls later, a friend of a friend
came through big time.  The limo would have been perfect fit for
8.  10 would have been crowded.  We carried 12.  In a high
school kind of way, I suspect that added to the fun.

My sweetie asked if I would drive and wear a tux.  Conner asked
if he could call me Chives.  Good kids, lots of fun, sweet ride.

I'm the one wearing the hat.

















Group shot before they got to imitate sardines.


















Thanks Eric,  for coming through.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The return of standards................


















........and not a moment too soon.  Mathew Ferrara re-calibrates
the "credit crunch" as a deficit in credit worthiness.  Here.

His essay includes this wonderful quote from the very
accomplished (and Philadelphia born) Henry Hazlitt:

"There is a strange idea abroad, held by all monetary cranks, that credit is something a banker gives to a man. Credit on the contrary, is something a man already has. He has it, perhaps, because he already has marketable assets of a greater cash value than the loan for which he is asking. Or he has it because his character and past record have earned it. He brings it into the bank with him. That is why the banker makes him the loan. The banker is not giving something for nothing. He feels assured of repayment. He is merely exchanging a more liquid form of asset or credit for a less liquid form. Sometimes he makes a mistake, and then it is not only the banker who suffers, but the whole community; for values which were supposed to be produced by the lender are not produced and resources are wasted."

Ferrara opines:

"So why does there still seem to be a dearth of mortgage lending? Because there’s a dearth of credit on the part of consumers, not banks. There certainly isn’t a lack of money, considering the Federal Reserve has more than doubled our money supply in the past five years. Nor is there a lack of investors, especially foreign investors who are using cash, not credit to take advantage of low inventory prices.

"The credit crisis, therefore, is a lack of credit worthiness, not lending activity."

People of my parents' generation (having grown up during the
Great Depression) were very careful about taking on debt and
were very focused on paying off what debt they took on as
quickly as possible.  That may be an over broad generalization,
but my parents and all their friends certainly behaved that way. 

Some lessons get forgotten from generation to generation.
The relearning process is interesting.  In the meantime, and
 until further notice..........the de-leveraging will continue.

Speaking of Henry Hazlitt..........

A few Henry Hazlitt quotes:



















It is often sadly remarked that the bad economists present
their errors to the public better than the good economists
present their truths. It is often complained that demagogues
can be more plausible in putting forward economic nonsense
from the platform than the honest men who try to show
what is wrong with it. But the basic reason for this ought not
to be mysterious. The reason is that the demagogues and
bad economists are presenting half-truths.

A strong passion for any object will ensure success, for the
desire of the end will point out the means.

The first requisite of a sound monetary system is that it put
the least possible power over the quantity or quality of
money in the hands of the politicians.

The 'private sector' of the economy is, in fact, the voluntary
sector; and the 'public sector' is, in fact, the coercive sector.

There are men regarded today as brilliant economists, who
deprecate saving and recommend squandering on a national
scale as the way of economic salvation; and when anyone
points to what the consequences of these policies will be in
the long run, they reply flippantly, as might the prodigal
son of a warning father: "In the long run we are all dead."
And such shallow wisecracks pass as devastating epigrams
and the ripest wisdom.

The art of economics consists in looking not merely at the
immediate but at the longer effects of any act or policy; it
consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not
merely for one group but for all groups.

It is just as essential for the health of a dynamic economy
that dying industries should be allowed to die as that
growing industries should be allowed to grow.

The ideas which now pass for brilliant innovations and
advances are in fact mere revivals of ancient errors, and
a further proof of the dictum that those who are
 ignorant of the past are condemned to repeat it.

Sunday's Verse........

4   Long ago, even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.

5   His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure.

6   So we praise God for the wonderful kindness he has poured out on us because we belong to his dearly loved Son.

7   He is so rich in kindness that he purchased our freedom through the blood of his Son, and our sins are forgiven.

8   He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.

 God's secret plan has now been revealed to us; it is a plan centered on Christ, designed long ago according to his good pleasure.

10   And this is his plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ -- everything in heaven and on earth.

11   Furthermore, because of Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us from the beginning, and all things happen just as he decided long ago.

12   God's purpose was that we who were the first to trust in Christ should praise our glorious God.

13   And now you also have heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago.

14   The Spirit is God's guarantee that he will give us everything he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. This is just one more reason for us to praise our glorious God.

Ephesians 1:4-14
The Holy Bible   New Living Translation

Thanks Nicole