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America – the Story of US – Declaration of Independence

July 2nd, 2019 No comments
AmericaTheStoryofUSDeclarationOfIndependenceMastheadManufacturedHomeIndustryCommentaryMHProNews

Still from second video, below. Collage by MHProNews.

Millions of Americans were taught or acquired a sanitized or weaponized view of American history. Even those of us who focused on history in high school and at university were to varying degrees tainted by the perspective of instructors, pop culture, or textbooks.

 

All of human history, not just American history, can be oversimplified as a struggle for increased freedom by some against the efforts of conquest or oppression by others. That’s a tonyism you may not find anywhere else. Keep that in mind, test it, and see if it proves useful time and again in understanding the past or current events.

Some never ponder conquering or oppressing others, just as some have a hard time imagining how individuals who have options might opt for a life of crime. For those, the notion of con men or manipulative forces doesn’t come readily. Thus, it might need additional information and evidence for that reality to be accepted. Mindful of it, there are times regular and longtime readers know this writer has admittedly been surprised by the truth too.

Every person or generation that opts not to accept oppression has their own unique fights for liberty and freedom. 

It’s sad that millions of youth don’t fully appreciate, for example, how unique the American revolution, the abolition movement, and the Civil War were. True, other nations had their own struggles with slavery and indentured servitude. There are several other examples in world history of a dominated people of a country fighting off the occupation forces of others.

But the Declaration of Independence nevertheless stands apart from much of humanity’s story.

The first four-minute video helps sets the table for the Declaration. Thomas Jefferson and other founding fathers were well versed in history, literature, and matters of faith. None were perfect. So, it is no surprise that their declaration and the aftermath were imperfect too.

 

 

But from an objective view of history, perhaps the most famous part of the Declaration reflects a unique vision for humanity, and we should be mindful that the term ‘men’ could easily be construed in this context as humans both male and female.

We hold these truths to be self-evident. That all men are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights. That among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” The first draft read ‘life, liberty and property.’ The notion of privately-owned property was not new, nor were legal protections for property ownership novel. Those can be found in ancient biblical and other texts.

But stating them in such a political document as the premise for rebellion against the British monarch, that was notable. Enumerating the various ways that the English king violated those rights, that was meant to help rally support among the colonists for American Independence.

There is a stark contrast between using law as a means of safeguarding rights including property, vs creating laws that gave rulers rights and powers over the masses.

It is not a slam to say that America has never been perfect, that is just reality. 

But it is useful and inspiring to ponder that slow march and the uneven rise and retreats over the years for people striving for freedom and self-government. 

The history of America’s battle against not only British rule, but also against monopolistic power in the U.S. are useful to ponder for members of our industry. 

We never tire of celebrating the good already achieved, mindful of the traps and swindles that have also existed, past and present.  

Freedom is never free. It always comes at a price. It always requires effort and vigilance. But freedom is arguably worth the effort.

George Orwell had socialistic beliefs, so his insights were arguably somewhat flawed. But he nevertheless grasped that understanding history was important. Being detached from history makes the misinformed or the ignorant vulnerable.

Day by day we strive to authentically tell what’s occurring in manufactured housing from the perspective of industry professionals, investors and affordable housing advocates on MHProNews. On our sister site, MHLivingNews tells the tale of America’s most proven form of affordable homes in a way that makes sense for a broader audience.  

In both the public and professional instances, we are using information, evidence, and reason to combat misinformation. MHProNews | MHLivingNews are fights for economic, legal, evidence-based pride, and thus socially accepted independence.

The second video – which is a ballad – tells a tale that may technically not seem to be related to Independence Day, or is it? It has over 8.9 million views.

 


 

 

In a sense, independence day began on July 2, when the draft of the declaration was done.  But it was formalized on July 4, which is the official holiday.  The words on the Liberty Bell say, “Proclaim Liberty Throughout All the Land Unto All the Inhabitants Thereof.” (Lev 25:10).  Personal, economic, political, and religious freedom all go hand-in hand.  Happy Independence Day, an important part of the story of U.S.

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LATonyKovachQuoteManufacturedHousingIndustryWontReachPotentialAddresscoreIssuesArtificallyholdingitback466By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

Tony earned the Lottinville Award in history from the University of Oklahoma.  He has earned multiple awards in manufactured housing and in history. He’s a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

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What Are Federal Officials Researching About Manufactured Housing?

Multibillion Dollar Opportunities Knock in Solving Affordable Housing Crisis

 

George Orwell, All Issues Are Political Issues, Manufactured Housing Challenges, and You

The Two Gardens, America, and Manufactured Housing

Conquest Capitalism – Thoughts of Chairman Warren Buffett – Billionaires Campaign to Control Trillion Dollar Affordable Housing Market

 

 

 

 

 

 

Surprising Non-Partisan Revelations, Opportunities, Controversies Could Decide 2020 Campaigns – Affordable Housing, Antitrust, Wealth Inequality, and Manufactured Homes

June 11th, 2019 No comments

 

SurpisingNonPartisanRevelationsOpportunitiesControversiesCOuldDecide2020CampaignsAffordableHousingAntitrustWealthInequalityManufacturedHomes

Senator Cory Booker (NJ-D), 2020 Democratic Presidential hopeful, President Donald J. Trump, and Vice President Mike Pence have used a similar phrase. “Enforce…the law.”

 

Senator Bernie Sanders, another 2020 Democratic Presidential nomination candidate and President of the United States (POTUS) Trump have similarly used a phrase, “the system is rigged,” while differing on how to unrig the system.

Warren Buffett –

  • perhaps the third richest person on the planet,
  • well known Democratic supporter,
  • Chairman of the Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate that includes Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corporation, and other brands involved in affordable manufactured homes –

– said the following.

 

WarrenBuffettQuoteThereIsClassWarfareAllRightButItsMyClassTheRichClassThatsMakingWarWereWinningManufacturedHousingMHProNews

 

Don’t jump to conclusions.  By definition, only those with an open mind can be reasoned with.

 

The Code

People say things for a variety of reasons. Some things are said that are simply a statement of what is – or appears to be – objectively true.

The quote from Buffett – with whose strategic Moat and several other business practices this writer disagrees with on ethical and legal grounds – nevertheless spoke the bare-knuckles truth in the AZ  Quote immediately above.  It’s an example of separating wheat from chaff, with all people, organizations, and things.

Some statements are made in a more slippery fashion. It’s code.

Things are said that may sound appealing, but when carefully examined, may only be a veneer for obscuring reality or misleading people in a way that the speaker believed will benefit himself/herself, their group, or organization.

Discerning what is sincere from what is coded language is thus imperative in an era in which the majority – per public polling – now believe that the phrase ‘Fake News’ represents something quite real.

Surveys also suggest that tens of millions believe that the American system is rigged.

For an example of both of those last two sentences. Right or wrong, millions of Americans were led to believe that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians to win the 2016 election. But at least four federal investigations have disproven that claim, counting the one led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller which included a team of attorneys made up of Democrats and Clinton-connected supporters. Mueller’s legal conclusion, “no collusion.” No Americans were charged with colluding with Russians in connection to the 2016 campaign.  The claimed ‘obstruction’ item debate is for another time.

We are living in an Orwellian era. Tens of millions believe things that are demonstrably untrue. Those millions can vote with the same weight to their ballot as your vote or mine carries on Election Day.

That outlines slivers of vexing realities. But ironically, those factors hold a key to understanding how to win – or lose – the 2020 presidential and congressional races.

 

The College…

Some think the Electoral College system established by the U.S. Constitution is flawed. Others think the Electoral College represents the enduring genius of the founders. Whichever way you see it, the reality is at the state and Congressional district levels, the popular vote will rule.

America can be divided in a variety of ways. Race, gender, religion, political viewpoints, sexual orientation, income brackets, homeowners vs. renters, have vs. have nots. These are just some of the ways that political and corporate thinkers view the national scene.

Of the groups below, owners of conventional housing make up the largest category. But renters – or even owners of mobile/manufactured homes – could easily be the ‘swing vote’ in tight races.

  • Homeowners – “In 2018, there were about 127.59 million households in the United States. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, a household consists of all the people who occupy a housing unit,” per Statista.
  • Renters – 111 million in 2018, per Apartment List.
  • Mobile/Manufactured Homeowners – some 22 million, per the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)

 

 

UltimateManufacturedHomeHousingInfographicNotMobileHomeTrailerHouseFactoryBuiltManufacturedHousingMHProNews

The latest fact-check on tornado related deaths, damage, and distruction, is linked here.

 

 

HUD Secretary Ben Carson, and 2020 Election Game-Changing Issues

The next bulleted issues have heated up. How they are handled by candidates and office holders could influence the votes of millions.

In many ‘battleground’ states, only a few percentage points are necessary for victory. As little as 1 or 2 percent in some states or districts could decide an electoral contest in 2020, as experts and keen observers know.

The 2020 game is on. It has been since the 2016 and 2018 election results were known. Let’s review some hot topics and see how they may hold the key to victory for politicos in tough intra-or inter major party – or even independently run – electoral contests.

 

  • Consolidation, monopolization, and antitrust. Monopolistic power influences markets. That in turn can harm smaller firms that traditionally create the most jobs. That means monopolization can harm the interests of workers and compensation. One must bear in mind, that per experts, there are several legal tests that may trigger antitrust law. Sheer size may or may not trigger antitrust law in America, but certain ‘bad behaviors’ can. The left and right increasingly agree that certain firms, often the so-called FAANG or tech giants, may be exercising monopolistic power that violates one or more provisions of antitrust or other laws.  In manufactured housing, beyond those tech overlords, Berkshire Hathaway – parent to Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage and other companies – is a topic of concern. But so is the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), which is being credibly alleged to fostering consolidation. Given multiple opportunities to explain away evidence related to those concerns, the Omaha’s Berkshire brands that are headquartered in the Knoxville, TN metro and Arlington, VA based MHI have declined comment on issues like those documented here, here, here, here, and here.
  • HUD Secretary Ben Carson – affordable housing, homelessness, and some 1/3 of Americans renting with dramatically reduced chances for wealth accumulation. By chance and/or by intent, Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson, M.D., has spotlighted in recent weeks a surprising solution to the affordable housing crisis, as a video by left-of-center Bloomberg with other commentary posted here reflects. Much of what Secretary Carson has said and done is factually spot on. It should be widely embraced by the manufactured home industry’s dominant firms and MHI. Which is why it may seem odd at first that those same firms that Dr. Carsons’ recent address in New Orleans and his June 1-5th Innovative Housing Summit (IHS) on the National Mall in Washington, DC have given only a token or fig leaf support to messages and efforts that on the surface seem so useful to them.
  • There are, however, two words missing from Secretary Carson’s efforts that are legal in nature. Those two words, “enhanced preemption” could hold the key to overcoming most regulatory, zoning, and placement hurdles that are locking millions out of potential affordable home ownership, and/or lower cost rentals. The fact that Secretary Carson seems to be unaware of “enhanced preemption” – which officials at HUD have declined responding to that concern – raises a ‘swamp’ or crony capitalist question. Have major companies, MHI, and officials at HUD obscured or withheld key truths that could help Secretary Carson rapidly unlock the door to home ownership opportunities for millions? Without the need for new legislation? If so, how that topic is handled in the next few months may tilt the outcome of the 2020 races in numerous states. Why?
  • Because wealth inequality and a growing distrust of capitalism are other key issues, often more so among millennials. Notably, “enforcing the law” and properly exposing a “rigged system” that has sprouted “fake news” are keys to unlocking those doors. Because at its root, the interest in ‘socialism’ is perhaps best understood as concerns over bad behavior by uber capitalists that have manipulated the system to their own benefit.  That’s Buffett’s point, in the pull quote, further above.

 

Secretary Carson is not alone in having elevated the value of modern manufactured homes. As a report linked below makes clear, manufactured homes – properly understood – are safer, stronger, more appealing, and are often embraced in a bipartisan way.

 

 

The MHI video below captures a sense of that, by showcasing legislators from both major parties praising what they toured on the National Mall at IHS last week.

 

The report linked from the text-image box below outlines one possible case for antitrust action involving the manufactured housing industry.

 

SmokingGunEvidenceOfAntiTrustMonopolisticCollusionMoatClaytonHomesKevinClayton21stMortgageTimWilliamsWarrenBuffettMHProNews


Uncontested documents, quotes in context, and video that claims to make a ‘smoking gun’ case for antitrust. https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/bridging-gap-affordable-housing-solution-yields-higher-pay-more-wealth-but-corrupt-rigged-billionaires-moat-is-barrier/

 

The report linked here could potentially attract numbers across the left-right divides.  Rephrased, these concept – properly understood – can tap into millins of voters that they impact, and thus could help win elections. The strategies outlined are legal ones that don’t require changing or passing any new laws.

Let’s be blunt. Manufactured homes evoke stereotypical images that Secretary Carson is seeking to debunk, based upon demonstrable facts. There are obviously those who believe they benefit from those stereotypes of manufactured homes as ‘trailers’ in ‘trailer parks’ that they may mistakenly call ‘mobile homes’ when there have been no mobile homes built in the USA since June 15, 1976.

 

 

If millions of Americans knew the facts about manufactured homes, outlined in the 2018 reports above and below, concerns held by millions of conventional housing owners would melt.

 

 

It is in the interest of the long-term economic interests of the vast majority of Americans for their to be more affordable housing, and more affordable home ownership. Given those evidence-based truths, how does one explain the fact that the realities about manufactured homes has become so obscured?  Interesting and uncontested fact prove useful in answering that query.

First, since Warren Buffett made the decision to buy Clayton Homes, manufactured housing as an industry has shrunk in size.

 

ManufacturedHomeProductionShipmentSince1995MastheadManufacturedHousingAnalysisMHProNews

Buffett led-Berkshire Hathaway clearly has the capital, and the credit lines needed, to fund any sort of educational and/or marketing campaign that their wholly owned subsidiary Clayton Homes may desire. So how does one explain fewer manufactured home sales in 2018 than in 2003, when Berkshire first acquired Clayton Homes and their affiliated lending? How does one explain that in 2019, year over year manufactured home shipments are declining – now for 8 straight months – during an affordable housing crisis?

 

Logically, it is difficult to dispute that Berkshire Hathaway has the cash, expertise available, media assets, and media influence necessary for their organization to single-handedly debunk the very concerns about manufactured homes that Secretary Carson’s efforts in 2019 and previously are attempting.  Buffett led-Berkshire had $112 billion cash-on-hand in February, 2019, per the Motley Fool investor website. Are we to believe that a tiny fraction of that couldn’t be allocated to changing the dynamics of manufactured housing?

Which begs the question, why has manufactured housing not received that kind of support from Berkshire?

It must be noted that Kevin Clayton, President and CEO of Clayton Homes, brags in a video posted on the report linked here that “Warren” told him that they have ‘plenty of money’ to do whatever they need or want. In that same 2011 video, Kevin said they were planning an image and educational campaign.  What happened to that effort? That same video made a point that Secretary Carson made last week, about how ‘resilient’ manufactured homes that are properly installed are during a windstorm. It is often older ‘mobile homes’ that were not properly anchored that are the subject of media headlines, and those are only a few a year to a few dozen, out of some 8.8 million units. Fact – dying in a bath tub, shower, car, or boat are far more common than dying in a mobile or manufactured home hit by a tornado or hurricane.

So why is there so much misleading impressions and misinformation?  Why has the RV industry, to pick but one possible comparison, surpassed manufactured housing by some 5 to 1 since 1998, when manufactured homes used to outsell RVs 3 to 2?

 

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017MastheadManufacturedHousingMHProNews600

The data per MHI member, Skyline Champion, a publicly traded company (SKY).  Note the green line. Manufactured housing is demonstrably underperforming. 20 years ago, manufactured homes outsold RVs by about 3 to 2. Today, RVs outsell manufactured homes by some 5 to 1. Manufactured homes are normally purchased for full time living, many RVs are for recreational or part time living. Many RVs – which are towable as well as motorized – can be higher total cost than manufactured homes. The cost per square foot for a manufactured home is routinely lower.

 

To answer such questions, one must first grasp that millions of Buffett’s donations have flowed via ‘dark money’ channels through various left-wing nonprofits into efforts that have literally attacked manufactured housing business interests. See the details found in the report via the hot-linked text-image box below.

 

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

 

That in turn means that Buffett has funded both sides of several political and image fights in manufactured housing.  A closer look at the facts reveals that by 2005, controversies involving Clayton Homes have periodically sparked outrage that has cast a shadow over manufactured housing. Mainstream media videos, that span the left-right divide, are posted below that make the point.

 

 

Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance – Investor Lessons Learned

 

No one in the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis has yet to deny the evidence from the articles linked herein.

Facts and patterns of behavior, when laid out and connected in a puzzle-like fashion fit together to establish the following image.

By restricting or diverting access to capital in various ways, such as the one linked here as well as other possible examples – including possible FHA Title I and Title II, USDA, VA and other reforms – Clayton Homes has gone from 13 percent market share in 2003 to some 48 to 50 percent market share by 2018, depending on whose data you use.

ClaytonHomesOakwoodHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEndof2003MHanufacturedHousingIndust

Clayton Homes, 2003. After the Buffett Berkshire Buyout.

 

ClaytonHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEnd2017MHanufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

While several allegations of monopolistic practices have been made against Clayton Homes and Berkshire Hathaway, this website and our sister site are the only ones to date known to have produced documentary evidence, coupled with logic, and complimentary data. 

 

Rephrased, by constricting the market Buffett led Berkshire’s Clayton Homes, 21st and other lenders – with a wink and a nod by MHI – consolidated the market at a discounted value.

 

WarrenBuffettAZQuoteCriticalFactorDetermineValuePayFairBargainPriceMastheadTonyKovachMHProNews

 

It bears mention how that fits the Buffett quote above. It also has the benefit of potentially escaping regulatory scrutiny.

 

UnderstandingWarrenBuffettCastleMoatMetaphorsQuotesMastheadManufacturedHousingIndustryAnalysisMHProNews-519x768

 

It is precisely that kind of behavior that millions of millennials and others find distasteful about ‘capitalism’ that makes ‘socialism’ seem appealing to them. But that is a distortion of capitalism, it is crony or corrupted crony or vulture capitalism, quite different from free enterprise.

There are a few relatively simple concepts that if existing laws were applied could tip the 2020 election.

There is a case to be made that certain ‘big boy’ companies that dominate MHI are battling forces that are fueled by Buffett’s documented donations to specific nonprofits. Buffett’s money is demonstrably traced to both sides of several fights. Even if it was legal, it is arguably Machiavellian. There has been no whimper from Berkshire dominated MHI about that problem.

Furthermore, the last 3 MHI Chairman have oddly all had some sort of legal scandal attached to them. Coincidence?

 

MHIExecutiveCommitee3ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoChairmanMastheadCommentaryMHProNews

 

There are candidates in both major parties that may well be willing to take on such topics that are only thorny because they deal with some of the richest people and corporations in America and the world.

We state the points herein as believers in free enterprise and the principles of constitutionally limited government that founded this Republic. We believe in equal justice under the law, which at present,

 

Shocking, True State of the Manufactured Housing Industry, plus Solutions for Profitable, Sustainable Growth – May 2019

 

A variation that summarizes these issues can be found at the link here and in the hot-linked text image box above, that also cites various outside media and federal investigations into these same issues.

Perhaps no one in manufactured housing has interviewed more unpaid third-parties – including home owners – like the ones below, to provide others with an objective perspective of how the masses and experts think about manufactured home living.  While our sites and videos have sponsors, that doesn’t change what unpaid and unrewarded people have said.  The views shared below are common, not the exception.  The husband in this video is an engineer, the wife, a professional as well. Their statements fly in the face of commonly held beliefs.  Numerous such videos like these are found on MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

 

Summary

There is a growing agreement that spans the left-right political and media divisions in America that the United States faces a growing crisis in affordable housing.

There is a similarly growing agreement between voices in the two major parties that the consolidation or monopolization of varied U.S. economic sectors is occurring. Each of these trends are impacting manufactured homes, the millions who live in them, and those working or investing in the manufactured housing industry.

Some arguably believe they benefit from these trends. It is no surprise that those will raise no voice of alarm. Indeed, some of them will deny or attempt to obscure the notion that increasingly self-evident problems exist. For more on that, see some of the linked related reports, further below the byline and notices.

Stating the obvious can clarify issues. Citing facts, reasoned, and evidence-based allegations herein can orient those of good will that seek the greater good of the American public.  That in turn benefits thousands of individual business owners, and untold thousands of investors.

To oversimplify, relatively few benefit from the trends and concerns outlined herein, while the vast majority of Americans are being harmed. So, there is natural tension.

Millions in lobbying dollars and other forms of influence peddling are flowing in an attempt to avert the serious need to investigate these problems  Antitrust, and other legal measures that are already law could be used to break up and/or otherwise punish bad actors of which political parties they may be currying favor.

Why is such a scheme even contemplated?

Because housing is over a trillion dollar a year industry.

 

2018DataShareofHousingMarketManufacturedHousingInfographicDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews612

 

The ‘secrets hiding in plain sight’ outlined herein could be worth billions annually to those who have purportedly manipulated the system.

Our sources tell us that these issues are on several federal agency radars. The Knoxville metro news report is but one example. Keep in mind that the Seattle Times, and our own sources, indicate that there are other federal investigations beyond those noted in the next video.

 

 

Senator Elizabeth Warren and several 2020 Democrats have raised similar issues. The Trump Administration has recently been reported to be investigating big tech, but what has not yet been reported in the mainstream is any investigation into possibly corrupt or illegal actions by Berkshire Hathaway that is costing Americans a fortune.

Congress should hold public hearings on these matters.  Why?

Because the harm that has been done is public harm. Thousands of independent, small businesses have been harmed by such challenges. Calling in leaders like Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Tim Williams, Joe Stegmayer, Nathan Smith, Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison, Lesli Gooch, and Jason Boehlert – among others – to testify under oath before Congressional committees in the House and Senate could prove revealing.

It may also educate the public in the various ways that Secretary Carson has been promoting, that could boost economic opportunities and affordable housing options that could lift the boats of millions of Americans.

 

 

Carson has made himself available to sources across the left-right media divide to promote both Opportunity Zones, but also manufactured homes. He’s woven these issues together, arguably because they interlace.

There are debatably 3 possible scenarios that explain how a key solution to the affordable housing crisis that Secretary Carson and others have correctly said includes manufactured homes could be so misunderstood.

  • One must either believe that one of the smartest and most successful business investors of all time can’t figure out how to support Clayton Homes and their executive team in growing the sales of manufactured housing, OR
  • One must believe that Berkshire, Clayton, and the professionals at MHI are incompetent; neither of those two bullets makes sense.
  • Or one must believe that there is a hidden agenda. That the system has arguably been rigged and manipulated in ways to obscure the truth that gives the “Illusion of Motion” without delivering any significant results. That in turn allows Buffett to consolidate the industry at a discount.

 

 

 

In fact, the recent IHS 2019 at the National Mall reveals that no BH Media group publication has as of yesterday covered the event. Why not? Why didn’t MHI strongly promote that event, not to their members, but to the general public? Why doesn’t MHI have Secretary Carson’s speech in New Orleans – delivered to their own group – posted in full and prominently on their website. Are they inept? Incapable? Coincidence — or is it bullet #3 above? See the related reports below for more on these queries and the surprising facts.

We’ve researched and documented such concerns, layer by layer, over the course of several years. We’ve given the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis repeated opportunities to respond, as they used to do promptly just two years ago. But since then, they’ve gone silent in the face of these evidence-based inquires.

The general public is arguably harmed by these challenges.  Thousands of independent businesses – some that were successful for decades – folded after the events linked here and since.  MHI’s own president took a thinly veiled backhanded slap at them, in his own exit message.

There are more than enough reasons for federal and/or state agencies, and for Congress, to investigate the concerns that are costing the nation’s citizens tens to hundreds of billions of dollars a year. It could be a scheme so bold that it makes Bernie Madoff look like a piker.

This isn’t a Ponzi scheme, as was the case of Madoff. Rather, this is arguably an antitrust violation to rig the solution to the affordable housing crisis that some 4 to 12 people could have carried out. Using Buffett’s well professed patience, their possible payoff could be in the tens of billions annually. That sounds suspiciously like possible motivation to me.

Why didn’t MHI follow this pull quote from their own prior chairman? Or was that statement just posturing?

 

TimWilliamsGoodArgumensRespondEveryStoryRefuteEveryStatisticMakeOurCaseToPublicTimWilliamsQuoteCEOthenMHIChairmDailyUBsinessnewsMHproNEws

 

After years in the trenches of this industry, having been praised by some of the same people and organizations that we now critique, we think this outline best fits the facts, logic, and the otherwise inexplicable oddities.

 

TimWilliams21stMortgagePublicationDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNews1

 

Review the evidence.  Follow the links.

Joe Stegmayer, Cavco Industries, MHI Chairman, Insights from Innovative Housing Showcase

 

See if you can devise an alternative explanation that better fits the facts.

 

WAVY, Mainstream TV – HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Innovative Housing Showcase – Clayton Homes, and Berkshire Hathaway Revelations

LinkedInExcellentCoverageInnovativeHousingShowcaseMuchsuccessDepthColorIndustryMHProNewsReader

DM to MHProNews via LinkedIn.

We’ll continue to press these reports, plus much more, aimed at helping the industry achieve it legitimate potential while honestly serving millions.  It is all right here on the manufactured home industry’s largest and most-read trade media where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (Industry news, commentary, fact-checks, and analysis.) ##

(See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

LATonyKovachQuoteManufacturedHousingIndustryWontReachPotentialAddresscoreIssuesArtificallyholdingitback466By 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

Sign Up Today!

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To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which an be accessed by clicking on them.

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

 

Ross Kinzler Confirms Allegations, MHEC Peer Claims “Association Malpractice;” Member Backstab, MHI Failure Concerns

https://manufacturedhousingassociationregulatoryreform.org/lead-follow-or-get-out-of-the-way/

 

Kobayashi Maru, Crime, Kevin Clayton, Darren Krolewski, MHInsider – State of Manufactured Housing Industry

 

Andy Gedo, Partner at ManageAmerica, Raises Clayton Homes Monopolistic Practices Debate; Manufactured Housing Institute Related Issues

 

“Toxic Trailers” – Clayton Homes, Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clintons – Exposé Videos

 

Affordable Housing and the Two Sides of Rent Control, in Two Videos – Pros and Cons

What Are Federal Officials Researching About Manufactured Housing?

George Orwell, All Issues Are Political Issues, Manufactured Housing Challenges, and You

 

 

 

 

 

 

Profiting & Correcting – Manufactured Housing Traps, Pitfalls and Swindles

March 23rd, 2019 No comments


ProfitingCorrectingManufacturedHousingTrapsPitfallsSwindlesMastheadBlogManufacturedHomeIndustryLATonyKovachMHPronNews

Think triple damages potentially worth millions to some pros that you know, and billions collectively as you read this. You, a friend or colleague may be entitled to it, and you may not even know it. It may be easier than you think. That will be explained further below.

 

I can picture in my minds eye a couple I met at an Illinois Manufactured Housing Association meeting some time back. They were seniors. They were pleasant, well spoken, and successful for decades in the manufactured home community ownership arena.

But at the time we met, they were facing a crisis with their community. For years, occupancy had trended down. Their business model, as was true if thousands of other community owners for decades, depended upon so-called ‘street retailers’ to sell homes into their community.

When thousands of street retailers vanished in a matter of years, land-lease community owners like them lost a leg in their business model’s 3 or four legged chair. A series of other events in the late 1990s into the 2000s hurt them as it did others.

With dwindling occupancy, deferred maintenance became critical. Those often turn into headlines that for some years now are among those that has haunted land-lease communities – and by extension, the rest of the industry – in news stories and headlines like those shown below.

Mainstream media reporters may or may not be aware of those background dynamics. All they know is that sewer lines that once worked fine, are now a problem. Or water systems may need updating, but haven’t been properly care for due to such economic challenges.

Rephrased, take out retailers, and a series of other events created a cascade effect that continues years after those ‘street dealers’ vanished. Factories that supplied those retailers were shuttered. Lenders and financial services firms lost a once steady and dependable stream of business. Suppliers, transporters, installation, workers of all kinds are harmed.

Nor can manufactured home resident impact be overlooked. Resale values, the entire normal supply and demand chain equilibrium is disturbed.

All of that occurs by removing thousands of independent manufactured home retailers.

Much of the industry and its home owners has yet to recover. Headlines like the ones below hit mainstream news. Of course, it’s a turn-off to prospective manufactured home buyers.  

ManufacturedHomeCommunityMobileHomeParkNewsMHProNEws

Then, ponder the effect of a vertically integrated firm like Clayton Homes and their Berkshire Hathaway sister companies. When you have essentially an unlimited pool of capital, you can afford to lose money at dozens of locations. Never forget that Kevin Clayton said on camera that it would be okay with “Warren” if he lost money for five years, as long as Clayton was widening its “Moat.”

It is simply impossible to fully grasp the impact that kind of strategy has on the industry, until it is carefully understood.

The problems mentioned above then create “value acquisitions” for consolidators. So while Berkshire Hathaway benefited, because Clayton Homes expanded its Moat from some 13 percent to about 50 percent of the market in just 15 years, it also made it easier for several larger community operators to buy distressed communities. Those distressed communities may have operated just fine for years.

The residents in those once properly operated, but years later turned into distressed neighborhoods were suffering the impacts too.

A few “won.” Thousands of independent businesses lost. Millions of Americans were impacted.  But even big boy companies are harmed today, because the image of living in a manufactured home community was shifted over time from happy to problematic.

That’s just one part of the cause and effect of the traps, pitfalls, and swindles that have cost Americans tens of billions of dollars. A few benefited, but at what harm and cost?

This is a topic worthy of debate. Kevin Clayton, Tim Williams, their attorneys ought to explain or refute the evidence, if they can. Joe Stegmayer, MHI Chairman, a former president at Clayton Homes ought to stand before their industry peers and explain the documents, direct quotes, and video recorded statements if they can.

They and their purported puppet association in Arlington, VA have the right to remain silent. Never forget that for years, they each promptly responded to questions from MHProNews. It was about two years ago that all that publicly changed. But what they can’t erase are the impacts on the industry. Nor can they erase the times they publicly praised MHProNews in writing, verbally, or even on video.

These problems are opportunities in disguise. Time will tell if Clayton et al will appear before their industry colleagues next Thursday afternoon and explain the documents, quotes, money trail, trend lines, and evidence compiled here or on MHLivingNews over the years.  

But if they come or not, be one of those who see, listen and learn how the pains of the past and present can become a silver lining to a dark cloud.

How so?

Several ways. We will mention only one today, but more ground will be covered next week, in person and live. The opportunity for class action lawsuit that are handled by plaintiffs attorneys who will sue those responsible on contingency.

That harm artificially caused could logically extend to millions of manufactured home owners, because their resale values have been impacted by such purported market manipulation.

That harm also extends to those whose businesses were sold at a discount or failed all together.

Manufactured housing has seen several large class action lawsuits over the years. It remains to be seen if the SEC, which won’t confirm or deny that they are studying market manipulation in the Cavco Industries case, will dig into such matters. It remains to be seen if shareholders attorneys are going to look into these issues. Why should they? Because if Stegmayer as a former Clayton executive understood all this, and did it didn’t do certain things at Cavco, it obviously impacts business performance and share holders stock value.

It may not pay independents and others on the spot to be at the Tunica next Thursday, March 28, starting just after 12 noon. But it could be worth millions to some businesses, thousands to millions of home owners.

On my personal library’s bookshelf is a chess book. It’s title includes the phrase, Chess Traps, Pitfalls, and Swindles. It never dawned upon me just how much that title may apply to our industry. “Manufactured Housing Traps, Pitfalls, and Swindles.

 

Profiting & Correcting – Manufactured Housing Traps, Pitfalls and Swindles
You or a Colleague’s Opportunity to Collect 3 Times What You Lost

Plaintiffs’ attorneys inform MHProNews that such cases can bring triple damages.  As most readers will know, a contingency lawsuit means that the attorney bears the brunt of the costs and risks. The only reason they take on such a case is because of their confidence in winning it.  You or other victims don’t even have to know how it happened to you.  You only have to have been a victim in order to participate in such a potential landmark case.

 

Speak No Evil, Only Evidence. Tunica Show, Feds, Clayton, 21st, MHI, MHARR, Public Debate, and You

 

Please RSVP for Tunica next week for session 1. It’s open to legitimate industry members who are coming to participate or learn. We are seeking to expand the meeting room space from what was originally reserved. Details will be updated via our emailed headline news, so make sure you are signed up. 

Here’s that email link.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

 

 

There will be a Q & A after each session. To learn more, click here the linked article above or further below the byline and notices.  

We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, commentary, and analysis.)

(See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

HistorySeriesEventsDescribingAmbitiousTriesDominateManipulateOppressOthersThatCreatesDesireAmongFreedomAmongThoseBeingManipulatedDisadvantagedControlledLATonyKovachBy 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

Sign Up for our headline email news updates Today!

Click here to sign up in 5 seconds for the manufactured home industry’s leading – and still growing – emailed headline news updates.

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To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which an be accessed by clicking on them.

Speak No Evil, Only Evidence. Tunica Show, Feds, Clayton, 21st, MHI, MHARR, Public Debate, and You

 

“November Rain” – DoJ’s Top Antitrust Cop – Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim ABA Speech on Antitrust Enforcement for Americans

Tim Williams, PBS News’ Bad Bargain, Manufactured Housing Institute, Buffett’s Mirror, and Clayton’s Costume

Minnie Driver, Millionaires, and Billionaires – Debunking “Housing for the Poor” Image of Manufactured Housing

“Tug of War” – Manufactured Home Community Legislation – “Vicious Cycle Goes On,” Impacting Industry, Home Owners, and Potential Buyers

Warren Buffet’s Quotable Quotes on Business, Institutions, Behavior, and News Reporting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Darkness and Light; Faith, Freedom, and Manufactured Housing

December 20th, 2017 No comments

It’s Advent for Christians, and Hanukkah for Jews. At the “darkest” time of the year, when the days are the shortest, believers in America and around the world are celebrating – light.

 

DarknessLightFaithFreedomManufacturedHousingMastheadManufacturedHomeIndustryCommentaryMHProNews

Hanukkah is a Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire,” says Wikipedia. It’s a reminder that political, economic, and religious oppression have long been part of the human experience.

Hanukkah is also a reminder that such oppression can be overthrown.

The weeks of Advent are a reminder that the celebrated Nativity of Jesus Christ is approaching.

Dec. 12, 2017 and continues through Wednesday, December 20, 2017. Chanukah is the Jewish eight-day, wintertime “festival of lights,” celebrated with a nightly menorah lighting, special prayers and fried foods,” says Chabad.

Not being a member of his Willow Creek church, nevertheless the author of the book that the Netflix movie, The Case for Christ was based upon tells an interesting story. It made me think of the one-time skeptic, author C.S. Lewis, who said that Jesus is not just some good Jewish rabbi; rather, Jesus is either Lord, liar, or lunatic.

The Rev. Donald Tyr Jr. and we have a similar yet differing understanding on maters of faith. But we have enough in common to have created the joint statement, linked below. People of good will can work through differences.

Patience, mutual respect, and sufficient time/energy can accomplish amazing things.

Some will celebrate this holiday season in great wealth. Others will be in great poverty. Yet ours is a world filled with the raw materials needed for the masses to prosper too. If we lack something, it is the need to return to realities. To basics truths, so that we are not deceived, nor deluded, into doing or ignoring something ignoble.

Darkness&LightMastheadBlogDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsAll honest work has dignity, said Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

King was right. But if he was living today, would King be thrown under the bus for sexual harassment? King was an amazingly dedicated, accomplished, and yet imperfect man. Do we now throw out the wheat with the chaff?  Does the contemporary baby get tossed with the dirty bathwater?

Flashback

My parents were Kennedy Democrats and Reagan Republicans. Each of those presidents cut taxes, and spurred economic growth. Each president is celebrated by many, yet each of those leaders had their own scandals.

We are all mortals, living in a mixture of darkness and light.

We all have several things about ourselves that we wouldn’t want on the front page of the New York Times, or as the top story on Fox News. Duh. Myself, and all others, are imperfect. But we have to a degree collectively allowed standards by which leaders are measured to be subject to agenda-media spin, or manipulation by powerful forces.

 Controversial Jesus

 Jesus, for those who’ve never dug deeply into the matter, was a controversial figure. His birth, life and death are better attested to than Julius Caesar, Cleopatra, Plato, Aristotle, or any other figure from the ancient world.

 

For those two plus billion who believe Jesus came as the saving “light of the world,” His land and His fellow Jewish people were then subjects of Imperial Rome. Jesus raised no sword. But Jesus overturned the tables of the money changers. He did so with a whip made of chords, as the Bible tells us.  He called out Jewish and Gentile leaders for their hypocrisy.  They put him to a horrible death, hoping to end their fears and concerns over this itinerant Jewish preacher. 

Jesus’ opponents failed.

But In fairness, how would you or I have responded back then to the wild-looking, controversial personality of Jesus?

In time, those early followers of Jesus watched as the Roman Empire collapsed. His followers remade Europe in a more Christian image. But the ancient and medieval followers – not unlike King, Kennedy, or Reagan – were all imperfect. Broadly united for centuries, Christians began to split – and divided over and over again – beginning 500 years ago at the time of Martin Luther.

Flash Forward

It is ignorant to judge the past by the present.

It makes no sense to curse ones ancestors.

We are all struggling with darkness and light. The meaning of the name Israel is revealing, “one who wrestles with God” = Israel. Don’t we all wrestle with God?

Only the truth sets us free. That means that lies, and half-truths, are enslaving.

The sincere, honest professional – or journalist – spotlights the truth as he or she understands it at the time.

As understanding grows for a person – experience and wisdom hopefully matures – and one improves at their trade.

America was never perfect, but the founders had a good vision.  This Christmas, we celebrate at a time of growing prosperity.  We look to the south, and see Venezuelans sadly struggling for basics like food, after only a decade under socialism. Socialism and communism have always been deceptive half-truths, that lured millions into a kind of economic and political slavery.  Those who peddle it are ignorant, or have an agenda.

Neither Christians or Jews were anti-private property.

Christians, Jews, Muslims, and several other groups all agree that theft is a crime.

But theft – the taking of property or life by force, threat, deception, or any other injustice – can sadly be done by individuals, groups, or governments.

America will be free only to the degree that we realize the capital “T” Truth, and are willing to sacrifice and struggle for it. Since the Garden of Eden, freedom has never been free.

This Christmas – my hope, prayer, and gift to you, such as it is – would be that more people seek the truth, and attempt as best they can to live it. Who is this Jesus whose birth we celebrate almost 2000 years later? 

Who Rules?

For centuries, God’s ancient people had no king, God periodically selected leaders. In the Book of Samuel, from BibleHub, we read:

When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as Israel’s leaders… (1 Sam 8)…3 But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice. 4 So all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah. 5 They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not follow your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.”

But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. 7 And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. 8 As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. 9 Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.”

There was a litany of abuses and crimes that the prophet told the people would follow, if they chose a human king. Warned, the people still insisted. God respects our free will, so He gave them what they wanted.

On Christmas, we celebrate a new kind of king.  An infant King born in a stable, not a palace. One that the rulers tried to kill as a child.

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Christmas Star over Bethlehem – birth of Christ, credit Biblical World blog spot.

God does what humans believe to be unlikely. Principles, not posturing.

God gave us freedom. We can put freedom to work, or we can abuse our freedom. We can protect, or neglect our freedom.

There are many forms of slavery; drugs, alcohol, certain forms of “entertainment,” or anything taken to excess that is not light. Sin is real, and it is the darkness of sin that harms and divides people. We all need salvation. Light and truth are for a time, resisted. We all wrestle with God. Thankfully, the Creator is merciful. Maybe we all should be more patient and merciful too?

AllTruthPassesThrough3StagesRidiculedViolentlyOpposedAcceptsSelfEvidentArthurSchopenhauerQuoteGalleryMastheadBlogManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

Manufactured Housing is a noble, but widely misunderstood profession. There are reasons why the industry’s acceptance has declined instead of advanced. A wise professional told me decades ago, that this is the time of year that professionals ought to ponder, study, and reflect.

Part of our solution – as a professional, business, industry, or as a nation – must be to rely upon and apply eternal truths.

Truth is as controversial today as it was 2000 years ago.

Study. Analyze. Ask questions. Seek the truth with an open mind.  Don’t prejudge, as you don’t want your profession or our homes to be misjudged either. “Do unto others, as you would have others do unto you,” said the infant king, after he grew to maturity. That humble king built homes, so perhaps we should look to him more for examples of what we too must do.

NothingIsChangedUntilItisChallenged-SoheylaKovachLATonyKovachTamasKovachDonaldTyeJr.575x238

Tony took the photo at the right.

Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones. May the coming New Year be merrier and brighter.

Christmas UPDATE:

Ladies – Love, Lunacy, Leadership, and those “Laddies”

(Inspirational, commentary, Merry Christmas.)

la-tony-kovach-latonykovach-com-By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

Cong Keith Ellison, Others Accuse Clayton Homes, Berkshire Hathaway Lenders, MHI of Monopolistic, Racism, Steering, Predatory Lending, and More

September 11th, 2017 No comments

When testifying in front of the House Financial Services Committee, Kevin Clayton, CEO of Maryville, Tenn.-based Clayton Homes and head of the Manufactured Housing Institute…” – HousingWire.

Mobile home [sic] loans and borrowers are different. Clayton Homes dominates the industry. Clayton charges borrowers of color a lot more. Clayton targets borrowers of color and steers them into…” National Consumer Law Center.

OpenMindCiteSourcesFromAcrossTheSpectrumMHProNews

American Banker, Seattle Times, BuzzFeed News

RacialJusticeEqualEconomicOpportunityProjectNationalConsumerLawCenterKeithEllisonD-MN5DanielWagnerBuzzfeedMikeBakerSeattleTimesDiscrminationMHProNews

Notice: Independent Thinkers can consider points and evidence from across the economic and political spectrum. To see the report this screen capture was taken from, click here or the image above.

…These are just some of the operations that have identified the third rail in the manufactured housing industry’s economic and political landscape.

ThirdRailPoliticsDefinedMHProNewsBerkshire Hathaway (BH) Owned Clayton Homes dominates the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). Isn’t that evident by…?

  • Third party media analysis (examples, from both right and left wing media)
  • The fact that 2 out of 4 of the MHI Executive Committee seats are held by Clayton Homes’ Tom Hodges and 21st Mortgage, Tim Williams,
  • The third seat is held by a former Clayton Homes division president, Joe Stegmayer, now Chairman of Cavco Industries, and
  • Howard Walker, ELS which uses BH lending and other BH connected products and services?
MHIannouncestheirnewExecutiveCommitteeboardmembersAward-WinnerscreditMHIlegal500mhpronewslinkedin-postedtoDailybusinessnews-

Some of the photos above are by MHI, or 21st, BH companies, and are provided under fair use guidelines.

Clayton Homes and its sister operations have been charged by several third parties with racism, steering, and predatory lending.

  • It’s 9.11. 9/11/2001 was like a wake-up call, but it also brought the nation together.
  • Texas and Louisiana have just endured Hurricane Harvey.
  • Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas have, are or soon will be feeling the impact of Irma.
  • We have a builder/businessman in the White House.
  • President Donald J. Trump has prefab housing interests.
  • Vice President Mike Pence understands and respects manufactured housing, perhaps better than any VP in history.
CampaignForAccountabiltyClaytonHomesLogoBerkshireHathawayVanderbiltMortgageRacismSteeringPredatoryLendingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews720x403-575x322

Each of those lodging allegations discussion on this page are reported in the Daily Business News post, click image above.

The president’s agenda is pro-business, pro-growth, American Business and American Workers First.

IamGoingToLowerYourTaxesEliminateEveryUnnecessaryRegulationUNleashAmericanEnergyPlacingAmericanBusinessandWorkersFirstDonaldJTrumpNationalViewsMastheadMHProNews

The president has shown by his actions that he is implementing his campaign promises.  The DC Swamp is Fighting Back.

That Swamp is perhaps best defined as the intersection of Big Business, Big Lobby, and Big Government.

The Above Is Like an Executive Summary,

The Below are Some Details, Facts, Allegations, Concerns – What It Means to Manufactured Housing, and

Potential Next Steps

 

Superficiality is the curse of the modern world” – Matthew Kelly

Skim at your own risk.

Open your mind, and consider the following objectively, without passion, habit, or emotion.

While some of those claims by parties outside of manufactured housing could be nuanced, questioned or debunked, the persistence of the allegations above and below by third parties are significant. We’ll note right now that our raising this issue as a pro-industry trade publisher, and citing these topics from these sources, doesn’t mean we endorse everything these parties are stating or alleging.

Rather, we’re doing what every good trade media does in other industries. We report the good, the bad and the problematic.

There is no way to solve a problem if you don’t first identify it, analyze the options, and then begin to work to solve those identified issues.

TheSystemIsRiggedHUDRossKinzlerDonaldTyeJrFederalOfficialDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Thanks to our sponsors, team and supporters, we bring day-by-day the Manufactured Home Industry’s “News, Tips and Views that Pros Can Use.”  It’s all about team work.  While the commentary is that of our organization, we must in gratitude in turn thanks those:

  • Sources,
  • Supporters,
  • Sponsors,
  • Service users of our operation,
  • That make our work possible. We could not do this alone.  We don’t operate in a vacuum.

We salute those who support us, and our thousands of readers should use their products and services at every opportunity.

USRepMaxineWaterEmanuelCleaverKeithEllisonMikeCapuanoMastheadDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

These Democratic lawmakers have raised the issue of racism with respect to the companies that dominate MHI. MHProNews is the first in the Industry to notify industry readers that the Center for Accountability, about two weeks ago, put out a press release that they are pursuing this racism, steering and predatory lending issue. MHProNews asked MHI’s leadership about this, asking them to reject racism. After several days, they have not yet done so. Now, MHI’s SVP Lesli Gooch admits that Rep. Ellison is opposing the MHI Preserving Access bill. Will any thinking person be surprised if Ellison, the CfA or others accuse MHI’s leadership of racism?

Congressman Ellison and others pushing DOJ and CFPB Investigations

MHProNews documented in the reports linked that third parties are pushing the Department of Justice (DOJ) and/or the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to release findings about Berkshire Hathaway operations on the issues of racism, steering and predatory lending.

What is not entirely clear is the degree to which anti-trust allegations may be part of DOJ or other investigations.

While we have sources in and close to Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt, and the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

Those sources state they are carefully monitoring all that we publish.

To our knowledge at this moment, MHI and the Berkshire Hathaway (BH) brands have not responded to these issues raised last month or previously.

Why not?

Allegations, Allegations – Facts, Figures and The Record

We’re told that MHI and the BH brands have attorneys that go over our articles and posts, looking for ways to shut MHProNews and MHLivingNews down.  Why? Are they trying to control the narrative? So that only their voice is left?

We have sources that have told us that they’ve directly and/or indirectly pressured our advertisers and sponsors.

We’ll layout those concerns and allegations above and below. “We Provide, You Decide.” ©

The Third Rail in Manufactured Housing

There is a reputed third rail in manufactured housing.

BH has so much influence – some believe – they industry professionals and companies are economically fearful of standing up to them.

But thanks to some courageous, wise, committed, sponsors and supporters – we’ve been able to carry on.

That should not be construed to mean that those sponsors agree with each and everything we do.  We don’t ask some’s permission to publish or produce. We have quiet advice from a variety of sources. But we make our own decisions, based upon the facts, input as we see them and experience.

We strive day-by-day to act in what we believe the facts and experience reveals are the root issues that hold manufactured housing back from doing 5 to 10 times more business annually than the industry currently does.

We’ve said for years.  If RVs are outselling Manufactured Housing by some 5 to 1, why can’t almost every honest retailer, every ethical community operator be selling about 5 or more times the number of homes that they do?  RVs are a luxury for most, while manufactured homes are one of the necessities of life.

 

TanstaflThereIsNoSuchThingAsAFreeLunchProtectLifeLibertyPropertyRevDonaldTyeJrLATonyKovach

Click the image above to read the post this joint statement of opportunity and hope that this graphic comes from.

MHI and Surrogates

Suzanne Felber and George Allen have and are said to be receiving promotional benefits from MHI, and/or certain forms of work from MHI and/or Berkshire Hathaway (BH) companies.

SuzanneFelberFrankRolfeRichardADickJennisonAmericanHousingAdvocatesManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBuisnessNewsMHProNews600

Notice, we will be circling back this weekend to post missing links and additional information for this report.

Is it a coincidence that Felber’s site fawns over Jennison, HUD’s Pam Danner, Clayton Homes, and MHI?

Allen’s situation is perhaps more complex, as the emailed discussion linked here reflects.

GeorgeAllenDownBy100MHIFlyInDownby60ilyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Notice, we will be circling back this weekend to post missing links and additional information for this report.

What is clear is that Allen periodically lashes out via email and/via his blog, etc. against this writer and MHProNews with unsubstantiated claims, designed to dissuade his followers from putting stock in MHARR, this writer, or the MHProNews trade media.

Why?

Allen – by accident, design, hubris, envy or some combination – thus provides de facto ‘cover’ to MHI and the BH brands.

That cover comes from the one person – Allen – who made a serious claim at starting a post-production association. But after a number of years have gone by, his COBA7 is not a formal association at all. Emails between members of COBA7 provided to MHProNews by their own followers suggest they are unsure what to do about MHI or how to best advance the industry.

It wasn’t always so with Allen, as the screen captures and weekend email exchange attached reflects.

At a minimum, we’d allege that Allen’s not been consistent.

At a minimum, Allen’s failed to follow the logic of what the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) and others have pointed out.  That doesn’t mean he should be condemned to perdition’s flames. I’ve said many times, if Allen’s followers didn’t see some value to his work, then he’d have no audience.

But is the main value Allen brings his networking meetings?  And given the steep decline in his meeting attendance since we were involved in cross-promotion with him, is Allen’s influence rising, or fading?

ManufacturedHousingIndustryMonopoly-Oligarchy-GeorgeAllen-PostedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews-

By citing Allen, Felber or whomever, that should not be construed as a blanket endorsement. We are pointing to specific facts, statements or claims made. Links will be added, likely this wekened. Please check back.

MHARR, MHI, and MHProNews

While MHARR and MHProNews have some overlapping interests, each organization is a distinct and independent operation.

Allen wrongfully conflates MHARR and MHI’s respective missions. We’ve covered that before, so won’t belabor that today.

For several years before MHARR used MHProNews for some modest ads, this writer was periodically taking MHARR positions at MHI meetings.  We as trade publishers did so when we felt MHARR was correct.  I personally did that privately and in public, both before and after my being elected by my peers as a board member of the MHI Suppliers Division.

MHI knew exactly who I was – a goal and solution oriented, pragmatic idealistic – because I don’t keep that secret. It’s part of every email MHProNews sends out.

obstacles-are-those-frightful-things-you-see-when-you-take-your-eyes-off-the-goal- henry-ford-inspiration-(c)lifestyle-factory-homes-llc-posted-mhpronews.

Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford

A search of our articles going back in time will reflect the reality that we supported MHI on some topics, MHARR on others.

MHI's New CEO, Dick Jennison

This was one of the photos taken by MHProNews, a behind-the-camera, behind the scenes effort some years ago to get MHI and MHARR to work more closely together. Richard Dick Jennison, left, Mark Weiss, right. Weiss is now MHARR, President and CEO.

It should also be noted that at one point in time, perhaps naively believing that MHI and MHARR could be ‘reconciled,’ we attempted to do just that when Dick Jennison came on board as MHI’s president.  There are a number of industry pros, beyond

  • Dick Jennison,
  • Rick Robinson,
  • Mark Weiss,
  • Danny Ghorbani,
  • Joe Stegmayer,
  • Dennis Hill,

and numerous others who know this to be true.

It should be noted that MHProNews always took editorially the view our parent company’s management – Lifestyle Factory Homes, LLC – dba/MHProNews.com and MHLivingNews.com, et al – believed was in the best interest of the industry, based upon then available information.

 

They can’t have it both ways.

We Operate by the Same Principles Now as Then.

Some of those stands were controversial, as Financial Services Chairman Dick Ernst said in the video above.   But as he also said, it’s because of our desire to bring the industry together in a cohesive way.

Cohesion – peace and cooperation – are only possible among those of good will.

After years of efforts, often behind the scenes, we came to the painful conclusion that MHI staff did not want peace with MHARR.

We also came to the painful conclusion that MHI allegedly wanted to so dominate MHARR, and if possible,

  • buy out,
  • draw in as members of MHI, and/or
  • force out of business each MHARR member, and thus silence MHARR for good.

As new facts or insights emerged, we as trade publishers tried to adapt to those insights. We had inside and other sources at MHI that gave us some tips and insights as to what was coming. Some of those insights were about plans, months or years in advance of their being enacted.

Finance, Monopolistic Actions, and Duty to Serve (DTS)

It’s clear in hindsight that on a subject such as the Duty to Serve (DTS) manufactured housing lending by the GSEs, that my view previous view on accepting MHI’s stated support for the same was naive.

MonopoliesTrustsAntiCompetitiveMarketsCrashCourseDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsLogo-575x333

Still from the video on the page linked above.

Naïve.

We have since carefully laid out our concerns and allegations that while

  • MHI staff stated their desire to want DTS to become reality, in fact,
  • Tim Williams/21st Mortgage,
  • as well as Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance,

have practically foiled those efforts at a robust chattel DTS program or pilot.

How did they do it, one might ask?  A fair question.  Here’s how.

21st and VMF did so by not providing the data that the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs or Enterprises) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as their sources say, needed to responsibly enter into the chattel market in a spirited fashion.

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Collage credit, MHProNews, logos are those of their respective organization, and are shown here under fair use guidelines.,/i>

There are other factors too, this document can’t be all encompassing.  But we previously documented with comments from experts such as Titus Dare, Marty Lavin and others.

Anyone can go to

  • Industry Voices,
  • the Daily Business News (DBN),
  • Industry in Focus Reports, prior
  • Masthead blog posts,
  • or previous featured articles and interviews,

and you’ll see that step-by-step, for years, we’ve laid the foundation for what we are stating today.

ThanksTonyDoWhatYouFeelIsRightBerkshireHathaway-F-ckEm-MHProNewsNMHOA and MHAction

We have often taken NMHOA or MHAction to task, and still do for supporting rent control or other efforts that are arguably harmful to their own claimed followers.

We think rent control may be well intentioned, but fails to accomplish the goal it desires.  We’ve cited

  • Paul Bradley of ROC USA,
  • Sam Landy, JD, of UMH Properties,
  • Sheila Dey, JD, of the WMA

and numerous others in pointing out the weakness of the concept of rent control. It harms business, affordable housing in general, and manufactured home communities and residents in particular.

But on the narrow subject of DTS and monopolistic practices by MHI and BH units, there may be common ground possible between industry professionals and those consumer-focused groups.

That said, we continue to call on NMHOA and MHAction to revisit and reject their own mistaken support for rent control, and other actions that harm the very people they claim to want to benefit.

We’ve invited public debates

  • with those ‘consumer groups,’
  • with MHI,
  • and MHI’s de facto surrogates to debate the issues by video.

While NMHOA has not yet accepted that invitation, to their credit, Isbhel Dickens at least acknowledged in writing their willingness to consider that kind of direct engagement.

By contrast, MHI and their surrogates have not accepted that offer on any level.

If they were right, why do they duck a public debate?

DuckDodgeDismissDistractDetractDefameFromIssueTacticsByThoseWithNoGoodAnswersMHProNews

Duck. Dodge. Distract. Detract. Delay. Deny. Demean. Defame. Destroy.

When you see an indirect, semi-public or no reply by MHI, BH and their surrogates, think about those 9 deadly Ds.

When you see or hear about efforts by MHI, BH, or their surrogates to

  • defame,
  • marginalize,
  • starve out,
  • or destroy MHProNews and MHLivingNews, you have to ask yourself, why?

Why has MHI not taken on the issues that we’ve raised, until the last few months, and then, only in an arguably weak or even counterproductive fashion?

When you see MHI, BH and their surrogates try to

  • buy out competitors,
  • harm competitors through heavy regulations,
  • feint an argument for X, when their powers that be are doing the opposite,

or try to pressure MHARR members into becoming MHI members, you have to ask yourself, why?

regulatory-compliance-costs-for-manufacturers-source-national-assoc-manufacturers-posted-masthead-mhpronews0-com-_001

MHI and MHARR Independent HUD Code Producers

In my enthusiasm to debunk the Atlantic and IBIS World, several years ago, I missed their powerful point that was hiding in plain sight.

AmericasFastestDyingBusinessMobileHomesManufacturedHomesAtlanticIBISWorldDailyBusinessNewsResearchDataReportsMHProNews

Their headline claimed that manufactured housing was a dying industry.  We strived to debunk that claim, and I’d stand by that to this day.

IBISWorldAtlanticManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsResearchReportsMHProNews

But I missed the nuance necessary for the point they made about Clayton dominating MH retail.

MHProNews has had independent MHI and MHARR members alike tell me that while they may not officially be up for sale, for the right price and terms, they’d sell.

AnotherClaytonAquisitionLoomsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsReportsResearchMHProNews

Clayton logo is their property, and is shown here with a collage by MHProNews, under fair use guidelines.

MHProNews has had independent MHI and MHARR members alike tell me that the biggest thing that holds them back having enough independent retailers to distribute and sell their products.

MHProNews has had state association executives tell me that several of their independents are undercapitalized.

MHProNews has had independent community owners and retailers tell us that there’s just too many issues to navigate.

They sell out or close down.

Wasn’t The Atlantic was right about that point?

What the Atlantic and others may or may not understand is just how the industry got to this point.  That will be laid out in future reports, stay tuned.

We will also circle back, perhaps this weekend, and hot link the various bullets and allegations noted in this document.  Stay tuned.

A “Brilliant” BH Strategy to Dominate Manufactured Housing, While Avoiding the ?

Look carefully and objectively at what Cong. Ellison and his colleagues PowerPoint on racism, lending and monopolistic practices.

Look carefully at what we’ve been publishing on MHProNews for months and years.

While we’ve worked independently of each other, there are several points in common.  Coincidence?


BH’s Clayton’s willingness to buy from independents, or to use Triad Financial, or Credit Human (formerly San Antonio Credit Union) or other lending sources and suppliers, those were arguably shrewd moves in a strategic and tactical sense.

  • First, it undermined the claim of monopoly. After all, how can you be a monopoly if you are buying from a competitor? That gives them some cover with DOJ or the FTC.
  • Next, by failing to succeed at passing Preserving Access, or
  • Third, by failing to succeed at getting HUD, or DOE or others that could be cited to relent in some regulatory overreach, they were indirectly allowing pressure on the independent producers and the independent retailers. That too is useful to give them cover with DOJ or the FTC.
  • But one reason why – primarily, but not solely via MHI and their surrogates – by trying to marginalize, silence, buyout, or crush MHProNews and MHLivingNews – weren’t they trying to control the industry’s narrative?
  • To the degree that they control the industry’s narrative, aren’t they trying to create an information monopoly?
  • By controlling the information – the inner industry dialogue – aren’t they trying to avoid the very kind of analysis and fact checks that MHARR and MHProNews produce?

Why won’t MHI release their own bylaws?  We’re told that isn’t even legal, but they’ve still done it.

Why does MHI have inaccurate consumer information?  The last we checked, they’ve not corrected it.

DougGormanHomeMartMHILogoAwardWinnerManufacturedHousingIndustryResearchDataReportsMHProNews

Yes, the industry is growing, and we should be happy about it, but we should be unhappy with how low the total sales volume is at a retail center, a community and the industry at large. When you look at the bulk of the mainstream media accounts, isn’t Tom Fath correct? Isn’t the industry under attack? Where is MHI’s defense of the industry? 

Why did MHI try to keep us from doing certain interviews or attend certain public addresses by elected or appointed officials?  That – per attorneys we’ve spoken with – raise a variety of legal and constitutional issues.

Isn’t it arguable that these moves are designed to choke off competition, including competing news and commentary?

 

Isn’t the Truth Hiding in Plain Sight?

Isn’t Warren Buffett precisely what Tim Williams/21st/MHI Chair arguing against in this exclusive report?  Every slide was provided by Williams and/or a source at MHI.

TimWilliamsCreditLinkedIn21stMortCorpCEOManufacturedHousingIndustryMHIChairmanWarrenBuffettBerkshireHathawayChairman

The truth about MHI is in several ways hiding in plain sight. But the MHProNews exclusively obtained documents from Tim Williams speaks volumes. But only to those with an open mind to reality, vs. fantasy. Click here to see the brief, yet powerful, report.

Mighty MHARR?

MHARR has a tiny fraction of the MHI budget, but they are consistently correct on the issues.  Frankly, the only things they’ve missed, IMHO, are fairly nuanced areas, more a matter of style than substance.

If MHARR can be correct on issue after issue, why is MHI wrong so often?

If MHARR can be logical on so many issues, why is MHI so often double minded?

doubleminded man, is unstable in all his ways,” – James 1:8

Odds are excellent that one or more of the 9 D’s describes the motive for MHI, BH and their surrogates from not replying straight up, or debating straight up.

If they were in the correct, why not take a stage in a video debate of the issues?

Could it be that they are concerned that they would lose?

DebateMastheadblodTonyKovachMHProNews

We’d debate MHI, BH, NMHOA, MHAction using video on the issues that face the industry. MHProNews.com/Pixabay.

That’s not hubris, because frankly MHI and BH has attorneys who are trained in such matters such as debate.  Ishbel Dickens is an attorney, and she too is trained in debate. They have a training this writer doesn’t have. That’s not my area of expertise.

They have time, money and resources we don’t have.  Yet, they are the ones playing the 9D game.  Why?

Duck, Dodge, Distract, Detract, Delay, Deny, Demean, Destroy, Game.

 

Why an Independent-Focused Post-Production MH Association is Needed

News, education and even promotion can only do so much. We’re not lobbyists, but we can, have, and do support lobbying activity.

The industry needs someone with the mindset of President Trump’s and VP Mike Pence’s stated agenda to lobby for that to be applied in Washington, D.C.

MHARR has said as much in writing for years.

There is a real need for either a third association to represent the post-production sector, or for MHARR and/or NFIB to step up and expand their offerings to fill that role.

Frankly, in a perfect world, what I think should happen is that MHARR expand, and team carefully with NFIB.

MHI-MHARR-MHEC-DC-MHProNews-collage-copyright2016WeProvideYouDecide

Image credit – collage of Industry Association logos by
MHProNews, each logo is the property of their respective
organization, and is used here under Fair Use guidelines.

As an FYI to the detail minded, the last time MHProNews had an in-depth conversation with NFIB officials, they stated that their preference was to work with an existing association on specialized topics, while providing the added muscle on bigger issues such as tax reform, repealing and replacing ObamaCare, and the like.

That leaves it to MHARR to decide in their November conference call if they may want to expand to serve the broader manufactured housing industry, as opposed to just independent HUD Code manufactured housing producers and some state affiliated associations.

We have repeatedly offered MHI the opportunity to respond in writing to the issues and concerns we’ve raised. We also routinely cited MHI, or their surrogate’s own words in our reports. That’s how fact checks and balanced reporting works.

MHI Wants to “Stop the Leaks”

We are now being told that MHI is trying to ‘stop the leaks’ – which includes even their own publications to members!  Why?

Could it be, as we’ve alleged several times, that they want to control the industry’s narrative?

Could it be that they want to propagandize the industry, to the detriment of those being manipulated?

Where is MHI’s self-proclaimed clout?

Where’s Rick Robinson’s self-proclaimed MHI Zen?

Aren’t MHI, Allen, Felber and others guilty of the very things that they claim MHProNews does?

To rephrase, aren’t they projecting onto us, what they themselves are guilty of doing?

MHIGotCloutWheresTheBeefMHProNewsThat’s why, ICYMI, its necessary to engage with these parties, and to refute their spurious allegations, while challenging them to debate the issues or at least prove their claims.

They’ve always declined or bow outed, why?

If they were correct, and MHARR or MHProNews were so wrong, why would they not debate? Unless they lacked the confidence of the guts to stand up to closer public and industry scrutiny?

A Missed Opportunity to Deny, Decry and Denounce Racism

RevDonaldTyeJr.ManufacturedHousingNotT-railerNotNword_001We also offered MHI’s executive committee members, plus Clayton, VMF and 21st the softball opportunity to deny, decry and denounce racism and the monopolistic allegations against them.

Go back to the top.  See what Cong. Ellison said. If you happen to be right or centrist, don’t let Ellison’s positions keep you from looking at what has been presented.

Facts are facts, no matter who presents them.

The scriptures have said, separate the wheat from the chaff.  That applies to all, very much to me  and our work included.

President Trump Accepted that Opportunity from Media he Doesn’t Trust, Then Why Would MHI not do the Same?

In the MHI/BH wisdom, they did not accept that opportunity. Any excuse they use to their members will be convincing to those who blindly want to believe them.

We’ll begin to draw to a close this Masthead commentary and analysis with the following.

Smaller to mid-sized firms are de facto paying for what the larger ones want.

Smaller to mid-sized firms are arguably feeding the hand that bites them.

Those that sit on the sidelines are de facto supporting the powers that be.  Any excuse will do to sit on the sidelines.  You don’t like the color of my hair, I’m too tall, short, fat, skinny, the wrong gender, skin color, whatever excuse you want will do.  Ditto with respect to mighty MHARR.

The larger firms benefit from the lack of progress on a range of issues, which they claim to want to accomplish.  What team keeps hiring a coach and QB to keep failing to win?

There is no logic to saying – as MHI does – that HUD is overstepping their authority, while not at the same time asking for Pam Danner to step aside and be reassigned as director of the Manufactured Housing program.  Isn’t that only logical?

It is fishy at best that MHI’s VP Lois Starkey left MHI and now works at HUD. To my knowledge, MHI has yet to comment on that issue.  If they have nothing to hide, why does MHI hide on the Starkey and Danner and other issues?

LoisStarkeyRichardADickJennisonManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryTonyKovachMastheadBlogMHProNews

Why has MHI told some that replacing Pam Danner is a close subject?

Why has MHI allegedly prepared Lois Starkey to fill Danner’s spot, if Danner does step aside?

We’ve pointed to arguments made by Sam Zell, or Jenny Hodge, and drawn them to their logical conclusion.

We’ve pointed to the arguments made by MHI Chair, Tim Williams, and drawn them to the obvious open question.  How can Williams claim to be at odds with Warren Buffett?  Hasn’t Buffett openly supported Dodd-Frank, the CFPB, Secretary Clinton and Barack Obama?  Hasn’t Buffett and BH favored heavy taxes and regulations that they can better avoid?  That, by the way, is among the places where Cong. Ellison and I would part company.

Because we’ve been citing for years third-party research that has documented what common sense tells the objective thinker is true.  Heavier regulations harms independents more than big companies.

That’s why even U.S. Bank backed away from manufactured home chattel lending, even thought they had a success program.  That’s and low volume, which MHProNews raised that concern years ago, while I was elected by my peers to be on MHI’s Suppliers Division Board of Directors.

That’s why this quote from Dick Jennison, an unforced admission by him on video is so powerful.

 

MHProNews led the Independent’s Industry Charge for the Trump Admin

My wife and several industry pros were on the Trump train before this writer became convinced. I saw one decent Democratic candidate, Jim Webb, or dropped out early. Several of the GOPers were okay on paper.

  • But Donald Trump had deep pockets,
  • the street fighting, counterpunching skills,
  • and the name recognition that made him a viable candidate.

12ReasonsEducatedIranianAmericanWomanSupportsDonaldTrumpPostedMastheadBlogMHProNews954x846

Fault him for this or that tweet, but I think the man is a genius. POTUS Trump isn’t perfect, but neither are you or I.  Trump is a genius. I’ve followed him for years off and on.  He was right about trade when conservative icon Ronald Reagan might have done better, by listening to Trump.

Can You Spell, Phony?  Hypocrisy? Con Job?

We remind readers that while MHI took no public position on the last election, just days before the election, they had not one but two pro-Secretary Hillary Clinton speakers on their stage in Chicago.

They did not lift a finger to help pro-business, pro-worker Donald Trump become president.

buffett-obama-mhmsm

Warren Buffett, left. President Barack Obama, right. Credit, Wikipedia. Why didn’t Buffett and Obama work to fix Dodd-Frank, if Berkshire Hathaway controlled MHI is serious about it?  Has Preserving Access been a delusion?  A multi-million dollar head fake?  Hubris by MHI for not making a deal on the MLO rule, which alone might have kept U.S. Bank involved in MH lending?  Why does MHI not answer such questions?  Could it be that the answer is an embarrassment to them, no matter what they say?

No two people agree on everything.

My 80 percent friend is not my 20 percent enemy.

My80%FriendIsNotMy20%EnemyRonaldReagan-postedMHProNews-com

We’ve worked with those from every racial, ethnic, religious, economic or any other group you care to mention.  We are realistic idealists. We are optimistic pragmatists.  We know that only some will come together to advance the industry, not all.

For approaching 9 years since we began publishing, thanks to those that we work with and who sponsor us, we’ve created a site that reports best practices, covers news that often no one else in MH does, and identifies issues that hold the industry back.

Frank Rolfe and I would not agree on everything, as he’d be the first to say.  But he’s right when he said that it is the industry itself that has held manufactured housing back from achieving its full potential.

TitusDareEagleOneFinancialPostedManufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

Titus Dare and I would not agree on everything either, as he’d be the first to say.  But he’s right that MHI has used problematic messaging that opens the Arlington, VA based association – and by extension, those that mimic MHI.

GuaranteeingAppreciationQuickSureWayToGiantLawsuitTitusDareEagleOneFinancialIndustryVoicesDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews595

Dare’s comments were in reference to an MHI advertorial quoting Dick Jennison. Links will be added in the days ahead, but you can use Yahoo, Bing or Google to find this with a  good search query. MHI’s advertorials have been a mix of useful and problematic information. Some of their statements have drawn harsh criticism, like the example by Titus Dare, above.

We could go through that same litany over and again.  Some of our strongest supporters don’t agree with every specific thing we do.  There are some that think, for example, that it is a waste of time to reach out to MHI, Allen, etc.  There are reasons that we do so. For example, recently an industry pro we respect tried to privately get Allen and I to bridge the gap.

My take is that Allen is not willing to do so.  But that’s not the biggest thing on the radar.

That biggest thing is the threat from within the industry posed by MHI and BH.

That biggest threat can be overcome, through a wise use of facts, history, common sense, critical analysis and reason.

BH dominated MHI has not defended the industry when it could.

BH dominated MHI has not succeed at getting Preserving Access passed, when numerous sources told us that MHI could have had the MLO rule by agreement with the non-profits.

That would have benefited Triad and Credit Human, along with every other MH lender.

 


Why didn’t Tim Williams and VMF agree to that half-a-loaf is better than none deal?

Do you see how there is a consistent pattern of failure by MHI to succeed in areas that they could do much better at than they currently are?

Are they incompetent?

Ill-informed?

Too arrogant?

Or is clever, head fakes and cunning?

Whether they succeed or fail at Preserving Access, or other issues, several industry voices have told us that BH benefits.

 


The MH Alliance

Freedom isn’t free.

Easy doesn’t pay well.” – John Bostick

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Principles and integrity alone will produce long term success for manufactured housing.

IMHO, without a moral, ethical faith-based foundation, our industry and our nation will continue to struggle.

easydoesntpaywelljohnbosticksunshinehomesredbayalmanufacturedhomes-com-mhpronews-com

Everyone with a belief that they contradict in word or deed is a hypocrite. This writer claims no perfection, my wife can correct anyone who mistakenly thinks otherwise.  We have for years and years said that all that we do is a result of team work.  All success is team work.

But every team can use a coach, guide, and cheerleader.

We know what works.  MHI – even while I was an active, board member – would not help promote any of the solutions that we provided.

Even when those solutions advanced what they claimed they wanted done, they didn’t use it or provide it to others.  Why?

How else to explain it than?

  • Are they incompetent?
  • Ill-informed?
  • Too arrogant?
  • Or is clever, head fakes and cunning?
  • Do the powers that be win, whether or not MHI succeeds at what they claim to want do accomplish?

 

MHI Literally Picks Winners and Losers

After a few appearances on MHI’s stage, while still an MHI member, not long after Dick Jennison came in as president, and while he and I were supposedly still on good terms, they stopped allowing me or others we believe in any time on an MHI stage.  Why?

LisaTylerPhDBethelUnivEvidenceDisprovedMisconneptionNegativeStereotypesContinueLocalGovernments-postedMastheadBlogMHProNews-

To download Examining Community Attitudes by Dr. Tyler, click here or the graphic above.

For example, we promoted Lisa Tyler, Ph.D.  Dr. Tyler is a terrific believer in manufactured housing.  She’s reportedly the first person to get a Ph.D. in perhaps 20 years with a specific manufactured housing focus.

Why did they give Dr. Tyler no time on stage?  Dr. Tyler, to my knowledge, had no beef with BH.  Still, she was given no stage time.  Why not?

nadeen-green-mhpronews-com

For years, Nadeen Green, JD, did Fair Housing articles for MHProNews.  Some state associations would promote her writing, but not MHI.  Why not?

 

At no cost to MHI, about 4 years ago, this writer promoted a concept at the Suppliers Division that would have made us not a dime.  But it could have made the industry’s independents billions of dollars by getting to the root issues that keep tens of millions from taking manufactured housing seriously.

Lois Starkey was the point coordinator for MHI on that issue.  We were told that Dick Jennison opposed that effort, if so, why?  That was true even during the time that we were supposedly working to promote Preserving Access together.

Why did Jennison oppose what would have been a super low cost, easy win for MHI to promote the entire industry?

Why didn’t Starkey ever advance the concept to completion?

Dozens of Supplier Divisions members know exactly what I’m talking about, because the above was not a secret. Hundreds if not thousands of MHProNews readers would read a periodic notice about that, and may have wondered, what ever happened to that infotainment initiative?

Perhaps it would have been too useful to smaller and mid-sized companies, and not useful enough to larger firms?

Allen criticized me privately and publicly for taking quotes out of context or not dating quotes.  Sorry, George, but you and I both know that isn’t accurate. We provide more context than almost anyone in media.  Some think we provide TOO much detail, and this post will be an example of that claim.

The reality is that you just can’t please everyone, and you just can’t please some people, period.

But the videos on this page are all part of the picture of what has held our industry up, and how this industry advances.  By choking off growth, people like Nathan Smith and other larger, connected players benefited at the expense of the smaller independents, isn’t that a fair reading of what happened?

Isn’t that what Smith is laughing about in this video?

 


A New Source for Pro-Industry Events

A non-MHARR source has touched base with us more than once on the idea of doing events independent of MHI.  We commend the initiative, should it advance.  Frankly, we’ve considered doing the same thing.

One of the few things that MHI does that has value for many are networking and educational events.  Not only this writer, but many – including MHI members – have told us that MHI charges way too much for their events.

That can be all be changed for the better.

We’ve said for months, MHI needs to be reformed or supplanted.

We’ve said for years, that the state associations are routinely far more effective than MHI is at getting their stated agendas done.

MHProNews and MHLivingNews are proof that there is no third rail in the MH industry.

 

ThirdRailPoliticsDefinedMHProNews

 

No one has killed me.

No one has beat me up.

We have spoken with legal counsel about MHI – and by extension BH? – efforts to marginalize, and if possible starve us of advertisers and sponsors.

We will do whatever we think is best, honorable, honest, and should we do so, we’ll do that with the least cost to us, and the most impact on them.

ExtortionRICOAlelgedlyIllegalDirtySideofManufacturedHousingExposedDailyBusienssNewsMHProNews

Links will be added, or you can go to the Daily Business News and use the search tool. To see the article, click the image above or click here.

While MHI has had some success at scaring off some sponsors, we still have enough to sustain our needs, thanks be to God and those who support our work.

The point is,

  • these allegedly monopolistic forces can be beaten, even though they are far better funded.
  • They make mistakes. Look at BH/Clayton’s iHouse.  How did that work for them?  Did they ever figure out why that failed?
  • Those mistakes are revealed through fact checks, history and their own statements!

The irony is that I’m not opposed to big business, but we editorially are opposed to monopolistic practices.

There are good reasons why anti-trust – anti-monopoly – laws exist. It is harmful to the public and to small business, which creates the most jobs.

Could I be wrong on President Trump? About VP Mike Pence? Perhaps, but I don’t think so.

I think Mark Weiss and Danny Ghorbani are right.  If the industry fails to advance in Washington under the Trump Administration, shame on the majority for not acting while we have the chance!

 

Historic

In our industry and in America, there has historically been three types of groups and people.

1)    Those who take one side,

2)    those who take the other.

3)    Those who sit in the middle, trying to figure out who to support.

The American revolutionaries had the odds against them. The British had historically won war after war before the Revolution of 1776.  The American insurgents rallied enough of the people to beat the English. Yet the Brits at the time was the world’s only super power.

David beat Goliath.

leaders-grasp-nettles-david-ogilvy-credit-izquotes-posted-CuttingEdgeBlog-MHProNews-com575x271

Nettles, thorns…you get the idea, right? Of course…

If we take all of the independents in MH combined, they actually outnumber MHI’s giants.  Nor do we need them all, but we do need enough people and companies of integrity to step up and be goal and solution oriented.

I’m not going to say it is easy.  Easy doesn’t pay well.

But what we want to do is doable. It’s been successful.

We think BH’s monopolistic control over MHI and several state associations needs to end.

 

We think if MHI fails to reform itself, then those professionals of good will need to do a post-production association ourselves.

freedoms_-_lincolnCreditPoliticalVelCraftMHProNews

Image credit, Political Vel Craft.

Those who think that manufactured housing can’t be change are right, and wrong.  They forget that 20 years ago, it was Fleetwood and Champion who competed for being number one and two.

Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford

While the industry is advancing, third generation professional – millennial Tom Fath – has said is manufactured housing is in decay and under assault.  He’s growing, and he’s right.

PEP-P.E.P.-Protect-Educate-Promote-mhassociationmantra-postedmastheadblog-MHProNews

The MH Alliance was started to advance the MHLivingNews, MHProNews and related efforts, It works for those who actively participate. It only needs to be scaled by more forward looking, goal and solution oriented industry professionals and companies.

The MH Alliance – P.E.P. The ADL and NAACP of Manufactured Housing

My father was a philosopher. He taught us kids that you can’t give what you don’t have. MHI can’t give what it doesn’t have.

For whatever reason MHI has not defended the industry nor itself.

That’s a hard to dispute fact, but we’ll call it an allegation, while we challenge them to debate in public and prove me wrong.

The industry must do what the ADL and NAACP did for their respective groups.

Tye quote

Now is the Time for All Good People to Come to the Aid of their Country.

Now is the Time for All Good People to Come to the Aid of their Business and Industry.

If not now, while the industry is somewhat recovering, when? If not now, when the nation is facing perhaps the greatest affordable housing crisis, when?

Summary

Doing and fighting for what’s right is profitable. But regardless, it is always the right thing to do what’s right.

MHLivingNews and MHProNews are prepared to support intelligent efforts to supplant what MHI does.

Why not let the big companies keep their big boys club?

Why not let there be an association that works on behalf of everyone else?

Feedback on this is welcome.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (Fisking, Analysis, News, and MH Industry Commentary.)

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

LATonyKovachMHProNewsMHLivingNews5StateConventionMastheadBlogMHProNews

Click on the graphic above to learn more about the rapidly approaching 5 State event.

L. A. “Tony” Kovach is the managing member of  LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC.  The Mastheadblog represents that editorial perspective, and may or may not represent the views of sponsors or others.

MHProNews is open to a diversity of professional viewpoints.  We routinely seek, get, and publish feedback from industry professionals that represents a range of diverse views and backgrounds.

MHI is once more invited to publicly debate via video, available both live and for later playback, their track record on protecting and promoting the manufactured home industry.

Because MHI directly and through surrogates has postured legal action and other similar threats, we are going to use the word alleged for the above, and encourage thoughtful readers to dig into the facts for themselves.  “We Provide, You Decide.” ©

The Three Letters that Unlocks Manufactured Housing’s Answers

September 4th, 2017 No comments

Whoever you are.

Whatever you do.

Whatever brought you here.

Whatever your political, economic, religious, ethnic, or other perspectives happen to be.

Three letters turn a key that unlocks the answers for manufactured housing investors and professionals.

Conceal, Reveal and ‘the Deal…’

Understanding the facts and opportunities unlocked by those three letters could lead to robust new HUD Code manufactured home sales growth.

That growth would positively impact retailers, communities, producers, lenders, suppliers, and all others who serve the public in manufactured housing.  What are those three letters?

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Why? Credits, MHProNews/Pixabay.

Why?

When there are millions of Americans who need affordable housing, why did manufactured housing finish 2016 with only some “81,169” new HUD Code manufactured homes shipped?

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HUD’s 2017 Worst Case Housing report points to nearly as many housing units needed today as the total number of pre-HUD Code mobile homes and post HUD Code manufactured homes in existence today. Those 8.3 million don’t count the millions more renting, 85 percent of whom want to own and could qualify for a residential style manufactured home.

When real estate agents can’t keep enough affordable housing in stock, why did manufactured housing grow at only 15% 2016 compared to 2015?

The Manufactured Housing Industry (MHI) has touted the fact that the manufactured housing industry for many years was about 21 percent of all new single family housing starts. Hmmm, okay. So, Why does MHI accept being at only some 9 percent of single family housing starts today?

Why did Richard A “Dick” Jennison – President and CEO of the MHI – say in reply to a softball question in the video below that “I don’t think that we [manufactured housing industry] should grow too fast,’ so that it gets…out of control” – out of who’s control? Who or which operation(s) benefit from slow industry growth?

When there are MILLIONS of affordable housing units needed, Why should the industry settle for less than 100,000 new homes, and modest growth?

  • Why not half-a-million new manufactured homes annually, or more?
  • Why should RVs – an optional purchase – outsell manufactured homes by some 5 to 1, when homes are a necessity?
  • Why did Jennison get his contract extended by MHI after he made this straight-faced statement on the video above? What would happen to an National Association of Realtors (NAR) or National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) president if they would have said something similar?
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These are quotes or close paraphrases of statements made by Richard Cordray, CFPB’s director. They would have been helpful for MHI to make their case to get Preserving Access passed. MHProNews created the graphic above to support the effort. Why didn’t MHI ever use it? Why didn’t MHI make a similar graphic or similar arguments? Why don’t they want to debate their own effectiveness? Could it be that they don’t want to have to answer serious, reasonable questions? Why not debate their wisdom and effectiveness?

If they really want to see the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act passed, Why hasn’t Lesli Gooch, Ph.D. – MHI SVP for Government Affairs & Chief Lobbyist – or anyone at MHI gotten permission to use the graphic above, or create a properly attributed one of their own like it?

Why not use Richard Cordray’s own talking points to advance the Preserving Access bill they claim to want enacted into law? (See quotes/graphic above.)

Why won’t MHI release their bylaws, which an MHI board member told MHProNews is required by law?

Why won’t MHI discuss the alleged conflict of interest for the largest lenders in the industry setting the agenda that most favors their own company?

If they are confident, why won’t MHI agree to publicly debate via video their performance and success, on their own claimed agenda?

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Why won’t MHI debate their effectiveness?  MHProNews.com/Pixabay.

When Lesli Gooch and the MHI leadership know that Keith Ellison plans to lead a charge against Preserving Access – as her own written statement below makes clear – why didn’t MHI denounce racism?  Why isn’t MHI being pro-active instead of reactive?  Why not -when as prior chairman, Nathan Smith said in a video statement – that MHI must make being proactive part of their standard?

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Each of those lodging allegations discussion on this page are reported in the Daily Business News post, click image above.

Smith’s point is interesting. Especially given MHI’s history of being reactive, per prior chair Smith, why did Gooch and MHI’s leadership fail to condemn racism? Especially Why – given the fact that Ellison, and 3 other Democratic Congressional leaders – have signed onto a letter to the CFPB and the Department of Justice that alleges racism on the part of MHI’s dominant companies (Berkshire Hathaway units Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, 21st Mortgage Corp)?  Why don’t see that opponents of MHI’s bill may again use racism as a charge against them, as they did in the 2015 congressional session?

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These Democratic lawmakers have raised the issue of racism with respect to the companies that dominate MHI. MHProNews is the first in the Industry to notify industry readers that the Center for Accountability, about two weeks ago, put out a press release that they are pursuing this racism, steering and predactory lending issue. MHProNews asked MHI’s leadership about this, asking them to reject racism. After several days, they have not yet done so. Now, MHI’s SVP Lesli Gooch admits that Rep. Ellison is opposing the MHI Preserving Access bill. Will any thinking person be surprised if Ellison, the CfA or others accuse MHI’s leadership of racism?  Why would MHI hesitate a second to reject racism?

Why didn’t Lesli Gooch’s letter to State Association Executives (shown below), include a reference to the various groups – including, but not limited to, the three below – which are targeting their bill, with allegations of racism, and more?

  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau CFPB
  • Democratic lawmakers
  • Center for Accountability (CfA)

The first three hot links were added by MHProNews and where made bold, so that those who want to dig deeper can quickly access more information.  but all of the text below is by Gooch to state association executives…who, by the way, are NOT “MHI State Executive Directors.”

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Is there much doubt that many state associations are dominated by the same forces that dominate MHI? That said, state associations do not belong to MHI. They are not technically MHI state association executives, as Gooch opened her letter. Some executives resent that kind of address of MHI to them, as independent organizations.

From: Lesli Gooch [mailto:LGooch@mfghome.org] Sent: Thursday, August 31, 2017 11:48 AM
To: Lesli Gooch <LGooch@mfghome.org>
Cc: Rick Robinson <rrobinson@mfghome.org>
Subject: Federal Legislative Update

Hi MHI State Executive Directors,

I wanted to update you about some upcoming action in the House of Representatives on the two issues that we focused on during the MHI legislative fly-in. In June, MHI members went to the Hill to: (1) support H.R. 1699, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act and (2) Stop HUD’s expansion of the regulation of manufactured housing beyond, and often contradictory to, the statute – on issues like garages, carports, frost free foundation requirements, and on-site completion of construction. Attached is our “asks” document from the fly-in.

As soon as next week, we expect both of these issues to come up on the House floor when the Fiscal Year 2018 appropriations package (H.R. 3354 – The Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act) is considered. We will know more about timing next Tuesday – while it was scheduled to come up next week we anticipate the Hurricane will likely push the timing back.

First, the language of the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act is included in the underlying appropriations text that is being brought to the House floor. Rep. Ellison (D-MN) has filed an amendment with the Rules Committee to strike this language from the bill. We are advocating with the Rules Committee to decline his request to offer the amendment during House debate on the bill – as they did when he tried to strike our language out of Chairman Hensarling’s Financial CHOICE Act (H.R. 10).

Second, Rep. Barr has filed an amendment with the Rules Committee regarding HUD’s expansion of regulations on garages/carports; frost-free foundations; and on-site completion of construction. Here is the link to the amendment: http://amendments-rules.house.gov/amendments/barr824171353405340.pdf. These issues were raised in a bipartisan letter to HUD Secretary Ben Carson (see attached). We are working to ensure the House Rules Committee agrees to allow the amendment to be offered during House debate on the bill.

We will keep you posted as things move forward. We plan to send out a grassroots call to action when we have a better sense of timing.

Thanks,

Lesli

Lesli Gooch, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President for Government Affairs & Chief Lobbyist

1655 Fort Myer Drive, Suite 200, Arlington, VA 22209

whats-wrong-is-that-we-dont-ask-whats-right-g-k-chesterton-posted-inspiration-blog-mhpronews-com-

What’s Wrong is that We Don’t Ask What’s Right

In the video collage below, is a brief clip of ROC USA president Paul Bradley explaining “cohesion,” a point that MHI Financial Services Committee chairman Dick Ernst speaks about cohesion in the same video, noting its importance.

Bradley’s point is akin to Marty Lavin’s argument that notes the manufactured housing industry’s “other image campaign.”  Lavin’s meaning is that the negative news that is so common from the mainstream media – which Lavin has explained must be dealt with.  When the national association for years has not refuted the negatives that manufactured housing industry is often hit with, why would savvy home buyers invest?

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To see what some other industry professionals have said about the pending MHI image campaign, click the image above.

Yet as Frank Rolfe and others have blasted MHI for their poor communications in defending the industry, or even promoting the industry.

FrankRolfeNegativeArticlesOnIndustryNoCommentbyManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIRVHorizonsMobleHomeUniversityPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Why should MHI and their dominant companies be in charge of a planned industry image campaign? Why – or how could they possibly lead – when MHI’s own president has advocated publicly – more than once – that growth should be slow?  See Jennison’s statement in the roughly 20 second video above.

When Clayton and Cavco’s own published numbers indicate that they are growing at a pace somewhat slower than the industry at large, why should they call the shots for everyone else?

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Using MHI’s numbers, Cavco stated the above. Per MHI, the industry grew 15% 2016 over 2015. What that means is that Clayton and Cavco are growing at a somewhat slower pace in sales than the industry at large. Based upon those facts, why should those two companies dictate the course of MHI’s future, or their planned image campaign?

Why doesn’t MHI address the concerns, such as the allegation by a long-time member that – “the big companies [that dominate MHI] have figured out how to get the smaller and mid-sized companies [members of MHI] to pay for what they [the big companies] want” – why won’t MHI answer that or other legitimate questions and concerns?

We could go on and on with questions like the ones above.

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For a story on Google and other monopoly concerns, and their impact on manufactured housing, click here or the image above. Photo by MHProNews, of the classic Monopoly game.  The longtime Parker Bros game product is now produced by Hasbro.

But let’s draw to a close today by saying, that after years of failures and disconnects, Why should MHI be trusted by anyone not a part of their inner circle?

MHARR is exploring expanding their membership.

Other company leaders have touched-based with MHProNews, saying they are exploring doing the

  • networking meetings,
  • trade shows,
  • promotion,
  • education,
  • post-production lobbying,
  • instead of MHI.

There are estimates that for less money than MHI spends, more could be done – and done more effectively – to Protect, Educate and Promote (PEP) the industry.

PEP-P.E.P.-Protect-Educate-Promote-mhassociationmantra-postedmastheadblog-MHProNews

A leading MH state association exec’s mantra we love to share.

MHLivingNews and MHProNews are prepared to support intelligent efforts to supplant what MHI does.

Why not let the big companies keep their big boys club?

Why not let there be an association that works on behalf of everyone else?

Feedback on this is welcome.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ##

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

LATonyKovachMHProNewsMHLivingNews5StateConventionMastheadBlogMHProNews

Click on the graphic above to learn more about the rapidly approaching 5 State event.

L. A. “Tony” Kovach is the managing member of  LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC.  The Masthead blog represents that editorial perspective, and may or may not represent the views of sponsors or others.

MHProNews is open to a diversity of professional viewpoints.  We routinely seek, get, and publish feedback from industry professionals that represents a range of diverse views and backgrounds.

 

MHI is once more invited to publicly debate via video, available both live and for later playback, their track record on protecting and promoting the manufactured home industry.

Happy Birthday, First Lady Melania Trump!

April 26th, 2017 No comments

Today will be short and sweet, in every sense.  When the president’s detractors are hurling all sorts of slurs at him, please step back and look at his family.

Our new First Lady, Melania Trump:

  • Foreign born,
  • Successful professional in her own right,
  • Classy,
  • By all accounts, a good mother to their son Barron.

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Ivanka Trump is married to Jared Kushner, both of whom are close presidential advisers, as well as family members.

So where does all those crazy claims by the president’s opponents about his being:

  • anti-immigrant (look at his wife),
  • anti-woman (look at his wife and daughter),
  • anti-Semitic, (Look at his daughter, son-in-law, and their children),

come from?

The president upset the powerful elites in both the GOP and the Democratic parties.  Of course, there will be ongoing efforts from all sides to undermine him and his America First, Hire American, agenda.  All told, his first 100 days have already seen real progress.

Make no mistake about it. The First Lady, President Donald Trump, Ivanka and the entire Trump family must have thick skins.  They are making many sacrifices to try to right the ship of state from cronyism by both major parties.

I gladly pulled the lever for Donald Trump, and we’ve publicly supported him for over a year.  As a skeptical, black pastor and Democrat told us recently, “He deserves the benefit of the doubt. Let’s see what the man can do for the country.”

First Lady, thank you for your sacrifice and that of your family.  The Trumps already had a celebrity life.  Perhaps, after four – or hopefully -eight years, others will see the meaning of such service, and dive into the fray.

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Happy Birthday.  We both signed your online card too, thanks for that opportunity.

Until next time, MHPros, stay engaged! The President and his team can’t do this alone.  We, must be all play some part for the solution for his pro-growth, pro-America agenda to succeed. ##

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

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Team Kovach, (l-r) Soheyla (prounounced “So Hey La”), Tamas (pronounced “Tah Mash”) and Tony Kovach (prounounced “Co-Vatch” like a “Watch with a V”). The Kovach family, along with Matthew Silver, RC Williams – plus many volunters and sponsors – who join together daily to bring you the MH “Industry News, Tips and Views Pros Can Use.” © Photo above, from 83 Degress Media.

By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.