How to Save Money if You're a Complete Idiot, Part II

You guys might remember the last time I addressed this topic:    When for Imbeciles shared such valuable financial savings tips for these tough economic times as Don’t paint your house exterior every year, and useful advice like Don’t serve Lobster Tails at every family gathering.  Basically, it was fiscal advice from really dumb people. I’m talking so astoundingly dumb that when they take medication that says to avoid operating complex machinery, they’re scared to tie their shoelaces.  I thought it was possibly the dumbest financial article ever published (not using crayon).

That was until this morning, when my wife had to show me this one… Oh. My. Hell. This one really ticked me off.


A theme that I’ve seen lately is that these articles always want to make the readers feel sorry for people who make stupid choices. This one absolutely takes the cake. As usual, the original article is in italics and my commentary is in bold.

Charles and Jill Segal have not made a mortgage payment in nearly five years — but they continue to live in their five-bedroom West Palm Beach, Fla. home. Sweet! 

Lynn, from St. Petersburg, Florida, has been living without paying for three years. Man, I wish! Did these people win a contest from HGTV or something?

In Thousand Oaks, California, an actor has missed 30 payments, and still, he has not lost his home. Huh? How do they accomplish this miraculous feat?

They’re not alone.

Some 4.2 million mortgage borrowers are either seriously delinquent or have had their cases referred to lawyers to pursue foreclosure auctions, according to LPS Applied Analytics. Of those, two-thirds have made no payments at all for at least a year, and nearly one-third have gone more than two years. Yep. Sad… But wait for it…

These cases can go on and on. Nationwide, it takes an average of 565 days to foreclose on borrowers in default from their first missed payments to the final auction. In New York, the average is 800 days and in Florida, where the “robo-signing” issue is particularly combative, it’s 807. Wait, you mean that I can be an irresponsible ass and live for free in somebody’s property for years? 

If they want to fight evictions hard, borrowers can remain in their homes even longer while their cases are being worked through. And now the article spins these sacks of crap as the HEROES.

The Segals have been doing that — in court. They bought their home in 2003 with an adjustable rate mortgage. Because that’s always a fine idea. After a few years, their monthly payments tripled to $3,000, Dur…  just as their home-inspection business was cratering.

The Segals want the bank to modify the mortgage so payments are affordable, and they think the court will agree that their lender put them into a toxic loan. Let’s see… Hey, I’m going to give you a loan, and it has itty bitty payments up front, but a few years from now, I’m going to anally violate you with a garden weasel and your payments are going to jump a thousand percent! SWEET! Where do I sign?

“The evidence will show that we were defrauded,” said Jill Segal. The evidence will show that you’re not very good at math and that’s about it.

If they lose, of course, they’ll finally have to leave. And, unfortunately, more than 50 months of missed mortgage payments hasn’t translated into big savings. How? How can 50 months without a house or rent payment not translate into savings? You basically got out of your biggest single expense for nearly five years.

“It’s very hard to save,” said Jill Segal. Who is an idiot. “Our company’s billing is 90% off and my husband is only working about four days a week.” Then he should go do something other than the crappy business he started. And that is coming from somebody who has been a small businessman that had to sell his company. I was unemployed after selling my business back in 2008, and I was a highly skilled and educated accountant applying for jobs driving bread trucks. Cry me a river.

Deal with it. That’s what most normal people do when life gets hard, Jill. Put on your big girl panties and get a different job. It didn’t matter what my skill sets were, or what lifestyle I was accustomed to. It didn’t matter that I’m talented, experienced, with all sorts of certs, had run a company, or that I should be making X number of dollars. I interviewed to drive a delivery truck, and I was thankful for the opportunity.

In the last 50 months, I sold a business, was out of work for half a year (never collected unemployment and lived off of savings and food storage, which I’m sure is an alien concept to the folks in this article), then found a job. That company grew from 50 employees to 200, and I went from the only accountant to the finance manager of a company that is now one of the top 100 most successful businesses in this state. Oh, and during those 50 months, I also wrote 5 more books, became a bestseller, got contracts to write 10 other books, sold the rights to a TV show, sold a house, moved, built a house, moved again, and have generally worked hard and gotten on with life.

All while you’ve been living for free… Crying about your circumstances.  SO SHUT UP.   

Lynn, who didn’t want her last name used, purchased a two-bedroom on Tampa Bay in 1998 for $135,000.

As the waterfront property’s value skyrocketed, eventually reaching $750,000, she refinanced twice (once to expand a business), and took out a second mortgage. She now owes more than $600,000 on the home, which is worth only $235,000. You know, people really should talk to somebody that works at a financial organization before making those kinds of decisions…

Living in this foreclosure limbo is “Hell,” Lynn said. “I feel like I’m locked in a box. I work for a FINANCIAL ORGANIZATION and if this came out, it could cost me my job.” AAAAAAHHHHH!!! You do what?  

For the record, I capitalized financial organization there… because, well, duh, Lynn. You work in a financial organization. Lift your lazy ass out of your cube, walk to the nearest accountant and say “Hey, Tom, just between you and me, do you think it is a good idea to refinance my house twice so that I owe three times its value and then just cross my fingers and hope that unicorns slide down a magic rainbow to give me sacks of money?” And then Tom would have stabbed you in the neck with his staple remover because you’re just too willfully ignorant to live, and thus saved us the trouble of reading this pity-fest article.  

She’s still hoping to negotiate the loan. In the meantime, small things bother her. “A couple years ago, I lost my dog and I can’t decide on getting a new one,” she said. If she has to move, she can’t be sure she’ll go somewhere that allows pets. I haven’t paid rent for five years, but I can’t have a puppy. I’m sooooooo sad.

Mr Snuggles ran away because of Lynn's poor budgeting choices


The actor from Thousand Oaks, Calif. began having problems during the screenwriters’ strike in late 2007, followed by a threat of a strike by the Screen Actors Guild.

He’s working with his lender toward a mortgage modification, submitting page after page of documents, which the bank has often misplaced or waited so long to examine them that they had grown too old to use. Page after page… It is just soooo hard for these people. Because the rest of us have never had to deal with things like paperwork or bureaucracy. Wait a second… I deal with paperwork and bureaucracy every single day in order to pay my mortgage too! I’m totally getting ripped off.

His ideal outcome is get the loan modified and get all his late fees waived. My ideal outcome involves world domination and all you can eat ice cream. He feels ENTITLED to that because the bank advised him to stopped paying in the first place to qualify for one of the government’s foreclosure programs. Before that, he had missed only one payment. I capitalized entitled, because I think that sums up the whole thing.

Meanwhile, he has cobbled together some income streams — small acting parts, teaching acting classes and even handyman work. Yes, because an aspiring actor has never had to go be a waiter before, ever. He’s just waiting for his Big Break, and then everything will be swell!

“In a way, I feel like I’m lucky because I haven’t had to pay any ‘rent’ for 30 months,” he said. In a way? IN A WAY? You no good, rotten, lazy sack of crap. You haven’t paid rent for two and half years, and you feel LUCKY IN A WAY?!

But he feels like he’s always under a cloud. “I haven’t slept in three years,” he said. “It’s terrifying. I have to have the ultimate poker face in front of my kids.” BREAD TRUCK MOTHER ****ER!

Ruben Martinez, a Staten Island, N.Y., man trapped in a particularly bad adjustable rate mortgage, stopped paying more than three years ago. His attorney, Robert K Brown, has managed to stave off one foreclosure. and overthrew a small 3rd world country. (sorry, gun nut inside joke)

Martinez, still struggling to find work, has little in savings despite the missed payments. He’s earning some income as a pastor and consulting for a non-profit family counseling organization. What exactly is he counseling them to do? Scam the banks? Live beyond their means?

“There’s pressure on me every day,” he said. “I have a wife, three daughters and two grandchildren. Where are we going to live?” In a van down by the river for all I care. I know, how about go live someplace you can actually afford. Oh, I’m sorry, is that small apartment not up to the high standards that you are accustomed to? Well too damn bad. The rest of us are sick of bailing you out.

And that is what it all comes down to. The above morons aren’t living for free. Somebody is paying for their free ride. There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. All of us that have lived within our means, sacrificed, and worked hard, are paying taxes to idiot politicians that are going to bail out these idiotic financial institutions that were idiotic enough to make loans to these idiots. So how does the news spin it? We’re supposed to feel sad that poor dumb Lynn can’t have a dog. We’re supposed to feel sad that some aspiring actor has to put on a brave face for his kids.

Bull. Crap.

I just mailed a quarterly tax withholding check to the government today for my book royalties. Sure, it was enough to cover several of MY mortgage payments, but I sure hope that the government can use my money and put it toward something useful, like getting Lynn a new puppy.

Luckily most of the comments to the article get it. But then there are people like this:

To all of you with such mean things to say, all I have to say is…. it must be nice to be perfect!

And that one random internet comment sums up so much about what is wrong with our country. I never claimed to be perfect. I claimed to be a grown up.

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