Archive

Archive for the ‘Manufactured Housing Commentary’ Category

Mobile Home Militia – “Clayton [Homes] Wants Your Cornbread Too” “Join the Revolution” – ‘You Gotta Have Swagger’

March 15th, 2019 No comments

 

MobileHomeMilitiaClaytonHomesWantsYourCornbreadTooJoinTheRevolutionGottaHaveSwaggerDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

They are industry professionals that currently hail from primarily south-central or southern states. They may hunt, fish, go to the honky-tonk, or go four wheeling in the mud for fun.  They’re routinely patriots – people of faith, flag, and family, who love the constitution and their second amendment protected guns.

 

They sell, build pads, transport, install, and service factory-built homes.

DonnieBrewerNateDrizzleMHMMobileHomeMilitisManufacturedHomePadDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

They are manufactured housing industry independents, but for swagger’s sake, they use the handle, “Mobile Home Militia” or #MHM.

 

MobileHomeMilitiaLoytaltyIsEverythingMastheadBlogMHProNews2019-03-15_0907

 

And if you have the courage and swagger, they want you to join their revolution. That phrase, ‘you gotta have swagger,’ comes from a thread with ties to #MHM.

ICYMI, or need a refresher, the article linked below was the runaway most read on the Daily Business News on MHProNews in February. That also means that it was the most read article in all of manufactured housing in 2.2019. It can be accessed by clicking the hot-linked text/image box below.

 

“Mobile Home Militia,” Retail/Production Sources, Sound Alarm Against Clayton Homes, CMH, New “Anti-Competitive Practices” Allegation

 

Omaha, Knoxville, and Arlington, look closely. These folks are part of your wake-up call too.

 

The following are posts mostly from Facebook, on the dates and times as shown. The connections of the various people range from the curious to the engaged, and the specifics of the connections to #MHM or the Mobile Home Militia are known to their participants.

Their posts and quotes as shown paint a picture, in the words and images of those who shared them. We put the meat of their quotes in brown and bold text, but the words are all theirs.

 

“Mobile Home Militia” #MHM and Connected Posts

Mobile Home Militia

February 27 at 4:17 PM ·

You ever had your feelings so hurt you turned down millions of dollars? Clayton just did that. They are refusing to sell TRU homes to Triple C in Conroe because he quit Clayton to become an independent. A threatening email from Clayton retail to Clayton manufacturing sealed the deal. Ask yourself this question…Could you as an independent call Clayton and get them to not sell homes to another store because the manager once worked for you? It won’t be long before Clayton wants your cornbread too.” 

#mhm

#independent

MobileHomeMilitiaEverHadFeelingsHurtTurndDownMIllionsDollarsClaytonDidThatDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews2019-03-15_0848

 

Not unlike their warning to their followers about what they allege occurred between Clayton Homes, Heath Jenkins and Regional Enterprises, they are raising possible antitrust issues.

MobileHomeMilitiaFBMastheadBlogMHProNewsMobile Home Militia

February 1 ·

It’s not just a T-shirt to us. Yesterday Clayton met with Heath Jenkins of Regional enterprises and informed him they would no longer be paying him rebate (essentially cutting them off without having to repurchase) Regional purchased $40m from Clayton in 2018, making Heath their largest retailer. Why would Clayton do something like this? Because he opened a plant and hired some of their people. If they would purposely go out and rape their largest dealer, what chance do the rest of us have? Clayton has convinced hundreds of independents they are your business partner, but make no mistake, they are your largest competitor.” 

The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.

 

MobileHomeMilitiaClaytonRapeTHeyAreYourLargestCompetitorDevilsGreatestTrickMessWithTrailerParkMHproNews2019-03-15_0930

MobileHomeMilitiaFBMastheadBlogMHProNewsDonnie Brewer is with Lance Inderman and 13 others.

January 26

 We have deeper pockets and we are gonna run Donnie Brewer out of town.”

– Robert Burnett and Mike Quinn of Titan Homes

First of all, I didn’t know who either of you were before someone told me, but now I do. Secondly, you don’t have deeper pockets, you are employees at a corporation and I’m sure they wouldn’t appreciate you pledging their money to “run me out of town.” Titan and Champion are too smart to employ a couple of geniuses like you two. I bet they realize it sooner rather than later. If you had first done some research, you probably would have second guessed poking the bear.”

 

MHMWeHaveDeeperPocketsAndWeAreGonnaRunDonnieBrewerOutofTownTitanSkylineChampionMHImemberManufacturedHousingInstituteMHProNews2019-03-15_0939

Titan guys poke MHM member’s bear, says the Mobile Home Miliia, and MHM pokes back. From Facebook, images shown under fair use guidelines for media.

 

 

MobileHomeMilitiaFBMastheadBlogMHProNewsMobile Home Militia

February 18 at 10:11 PM ·

What if I told you that corporate sign is an anchor?

You want to become an independent retailer? We can help.

Join the revolution!

#independent
#mhm

In Medieval Times this next post’s #worldofpain could be construed as throwing down the gauntlet. But from #MHM? Surely, they jest! Satire!

Or not…

 

MobileHomeMilitiaFBMastheadBlogMHProNewsMobile Home Militia is with Lance Inderman and Donnie Brewer.

February 15 at 9:56 PM ·

MHM VPs of public relations 

#worldofpain

 

MHMLanceDonnieBrewerDBNegotiatingDealDailyBusienssNewsMHproNews2019-03-15_0854_001

 

Or check this one out.

#MHMWalkaMiletoAvoidAfightButWhenOneStartsDontBackDownAnInchMastheadMHProNews

Get a feel for DB – Donnie Brewer.

 

DonnieBrewersHiringReceptionstBrewerQualityHomesHiringReceptoinistMHProNews

 

But this will give you a better sense of the man’s thinking when it comes to the ‘big boys’ of MHVille.

 

DonnieBrewerMobileHomeMilitiaFamilyFBMastheadBlogMHProNews

 

Donnie Brewer shared a post.

February 27 at 3:41 PM ·

And they would have gotten away with it if it wasn’t for us meddling kids!”

 

ClaytonHomesLogoDonnieBrewerWouldHaveGottenAwayWithItMastheadMHProNews

 

Can you spell, rebel with a cause?  Back to the #MHM…

 

2018ThanksForTheLessons2019LetsDoThisMobileHomeMilitia#MHMmastheadlbogMHProNews

 

Which is a good place to segue to Lance Inderman, a partner with Jessup Housing, who has his own retail centers and is an anchor in the #MHM movement. Let’s look at some of his non-manufactured housing posts, to get a sense of the man, and how that might shape his thinking in being a manufactured home independent.

 

Lance Inderman – FB

No, we didn’t cut his head off in the screen capture below. It is what it is, see the collage below from his Facebook page.

 

LanceIndermanFacebookfamilyMastheadBlogMHProNews

Lance Inderman
March 11 at 12:24 PM ·

Castro eventually made it to number seven on Forbes’ list of richest world leaders, which estimated his wealth at $900 million” — Maxim Lott

LanceIndermanFBSocialistLeadersCastroMaoStalinMastheadMHProNews

 

LanceIndermanIWillGiveUpMyGunWhenIAMalloutofAmmoandDeadVenezulaBansGunOwnershipSecurityForcesKIllHundredsFBDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNews

LanceIndermanAOCQuoteJamesWoodQuoteStudyHistoryFBDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews2019-03-15_0805

LanceIndermanFBSocialistsWanttoDisarmUsMakeUsUseTrainsNothanksIveSeenWhereThatLeadsIlKeepCarGunsMHProNews

LanceIndermanSocialistsBettreThanMeLogicComonSenseWorldHistoryFacebookDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews2019-03-15_0759

 

That paints a quick picture of Lance Inderman, with #MHM, Jessup Housing, et al. It doesn’t have to be your style or mine, but Lance’s marketing at his retail center is something like his FB persona suggests.

Like it or not, they do sell houses, which is why they have that swagger.

Short Brigadier Manufactured Home video

Longer Brigadier Manufactured Homes Video

 

These are an eclectic group. For example, there are some who sell upscale manufactured homes, while others sell entry level or ‘shade and shelter’ housing. Others sell a mix of product, from new, to FEMAs, to pre-owned, high or low priced, and so on.

But this Mobile Home Militia has declared war – or perhaps more to the point – they feel that Clayton Homes and company declared war on them first.  They are fighting back.  Stay tuned, because we will.

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.

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.

Related References:

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

“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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Warren Kicked Hornet’s Nest – How Move May Connect With MH, Renters, Professionals

March 10th, 2019 No comments

 

WarrenKickedHornet'sNextHowMoveMayConnectWithMHRentersSmallBusinessProfessionalsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Successful politicians and good brands have much in common.

 

Consider for a moment how Acura’s video commercial made a mark in the blogosphere, one that caused scores of keyboards and social media posts to go favorably wagging. “The [Acura automotive] ad is buoyed by Motörhead’s rendition of the Rolling Stone’s classic, Sympathy for the Devil, as the auto does its best sportscar-style moves,” said The Drum.

Every successful professional or politico knows the value of good social and mainstream media. But something must happen to grab that spotlight.  On Friday, Team Warren kicked the hornet’s nest of big business.  Which means that her fight is now on.

What every business, person, or politicians needs is energy. That Acura commercial – it has energy. The Warren campaign arguably just lifted their energy level.

Wittingly or not, for good or ill, there is no doubt that Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA-D) has several touch-points with manufactured housing professional interests.

Let’s be blunt.

Some in MHVille cheer her, while others jeer. But that too has potential energizing value for a firebrand like Warren.  As her hoped for GOP counterpart in the Oval Office has demonstrated, one can rise in the polls, even when controversial.  Sometimes, one rises in the polls, especially when a person or organization are shaking things up.

 

 

On MHProNews’ Masthead editorial blog, let’s note for new readers that Senator Warren – the long-shot for the 2020 Democratic nominee for president – has addressed groups that included MHAction. She was a driving force behind Dodd-Frank and the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

Those won’t earn her fan mail from several quarters.  We hope to engage with their campaign on those issues. That said, let’s now turn to the plus column.

Friday, the Warren campaign’s emailed statement to MHProNews stressed her emphasis on antitrust legislation.  Of course that campaign plank will cause shivers for some, but may draw curious smiles from others who are small- to mid-sized business professionals.

Warren’s strongly stated antitrust stance ought to have Republicans, President Donald J. Trump, independents, and her fellow Democrats pondering the 22 million who live in a pre-HUD Code mobile home, or a post June 15, 1976 manufactured home.  Why?  How might that target audience swing in the 2020 nomination battle?  Will breaking up mega-corporations play well during table talk at the community clubhouse?

 

InfographicMobileManufacturedHomeManufacturedHousingIndustryFactsDataResearchMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNews-445x768

 

Or consider the larger-still potential voting block of renters. They are over 100 million living in rentals, said CityLabs in 2018.  The vast majority of renters, per the National Association of Realtors ™ (NAR), want to be homeowners.

NAR’s Scholastica ‘Gay’ Cororaton, CBE, did research that praised manufactured homes in 2018.  Cororaton noted in her research that millions of renters pay the same or more monthly as what it would cost them to live in a manufactured home. She also debunked several of the quality concerns, noting that was true of pre-HUD Code mobile homes, not post HUD Code manufactured homes.  Here’s how she phrased it.

 

CompareMobileHomeTrailersPastManufacturedHomesSaferMoreDurableQuoteScholasticiaGayCororationPhotoSmallPercentageDamagedDuring

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

Each photo is of a modern manufactured home, which can be 2400 sq ft or more in size, 1 or 2 levels, set over a basement, or can be as modest as 320 sq ft. These homes are all built to federal construction and safety standards that went into effect on June 15, 29176, administered by HUD, and are thus known as “HUD Code Manufactured Homes.”

 

Recall, that Cororaton thoughtfully cited moi and the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform‘s (MHARR) Mark Weiss, JD, in her through research’s first footnote, on page 48.

 

TrailerHouseMobileHomeManufacturedHomeFactoryBuiltHousingEvolution101MHProNews-MHLivingNews

 

Renters and manufactured home owners are in a very real sense aspirational audiences that any savvy candidate should desire.

Who says?

In August of 2016, an op-ed in the New York Times noted that the “Downwardly Mobile for Trump.” That column cited a survey that revealed “Support for Mr. Trump wasn’t strongly related to income and employment.” That included the residents of mobile and manufactured homes, per the NY Times and others.

Curious about that claim, MHProNews did an unscientific survey of campaign signs and bumper stickers in a four star manufactured home community as Election Day 2016 approached. Our informal research confirmed the NY Times claim. The clear edge among manufactured home owners favored then GOP candidate Mr. Trump over Democratic nominee Secretary Hillary Clinton.

 

Why Does this Matter to MHVille Now?

The 2020 campaign has been in full swing for months. It will only get hotter. With a crowded field, and with the first debates ahead, the contenders must differentiate themselves.

Voters and donors must make early choices.

What follows are the 3 key words from the Warren Campaign email yesterday.  It will be followed by her campaign’s  pitch.  For those that know our editorial views, you won’t be surprised when we smile while sharing these 3 bullets from the Warren camp.

 

  • Antitrust
  • Monopolies
  • Breakup

 

Senator Warren isn’t just taking about regulating big companies, she wants to break the giant conglomerates up. On her 3 bullets, 3 cheers.

As you read the sections of their statements that will follow, ponder this fact. Your Masthead writer shared a pair of links – one of which is below, that the Warren campaign – which renounced major donors – received with enthusiastic thanks and interest.  As veteran readers on MHProNews know, you can access the report by clicking the hot-linked text-image box below.

 

 

Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier

 

 

Strategic Allies?

Rephrased, there are pragmatic strategic reasons why the Warren’s campaign may want to publicly lash out at a billionaire who’s first name matches her last.  There are likewise strategic reasons why if Warren did so publicly, there are numbers of independent manufactured housing professionals that could find her the more appealing Democratic candidate in their bid to recapture the Oval Office.  Because those independents don’t want to be treated as the de facto serfs of Warren Buffett’s growing empire.  Here are just two screen captures from the Twitter feed of Austin Frerick, of the Open Markets Institute (OMI).

 

 

Warren Buffett’s monopolistic tendencies in manufactured housing have sparked years of controversy that the Seattle Times, BuzzFeed, Representative Maxine Waters (CA-D), the Open Market’s Austin Freric (see graphics, above and below), GuruFocus, the Nation, Democracy Now, and others.  They’ve found Clayton Homes and their problematic record on race, business practices, and lending worthy of their respective ire.

 

AustinFrerickOpenMarketsMaxineWatersBrianSullivanHUDClaytonHomes

 

Recall how Clayton’s home town media put it in 2018?  See the reminder, below.

 

 

 

What better way for Senator Warren to grab headlines, and the potential interests of millions in the misunderstood and under-appreciated groups noted above, than to go after the third richest man in America?  Namely, Warren Buffett?

What better way for her to set herself apart from the crowd than to use the facts we’ve shared with her campaign, to highlight Buffett and his minions in Knoxville and Arlington, VA for their purportedly harmful monopolistic Moat?

Weeks before Warren made her announcement on Friday, MHLivingNews spotlighted Senator Warren’s speech to the antitrust-minded Open Markets crowd.  It may be one of the best cases yet on how existing laws can be applied to go after the giant conglomerates.  That’s why we published it with some related commentary.  Her thesis is that there is no need for years of waiting for new legislation.  Warren says that the laws on the books are all that is needed for immediate action.

 

Who Will Act? Will Senator Elizabeth Warren, and/or the Trump Administration Act to Restore Open Markets, Thereby Supporting Affordable Manufactured Homes?

 

 

Can Warren and MHVille Democrats, Plus Others Connect?

Strategically, one can make the argument that this fits Senator Warren’s needs.  It also fits that 50 percent of the manufactured home industry – with far more people – could find reason to support someone like her if she will publicly oppose Buffett’s brands demonstrable take over of the most proven part of the affordable housing industry, through purported market manipulation via Moat building “Conquest Capitalism.” © Depending on how the discussions go with team Warren, MHProNews just might give Senator Warren’s campaign the green light to use that phrase “Conquest Capitalism” in her campaign.

With a wink, ICYMI, here is the report on that topic, accessed via the hot-linked text image box, below.

 

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

 

What about the Donald?

As a political independent, we make no secret about the fact that we supported President Trump in 2016.  His campaign thought so highly of the support by my Persian princess, Soheyla Kovach, that they placed her pro-Trump column on their campaign website. Soheyla’s endorsement remained there until the Trump site was redone, after the 2016 election.

No doubt Soheyla checked off several useful boxes for Team Trump.

 

12ReasonsEducatedIranianAmericanWomanSupportsDonaldTrumpPostedMastheadBlogMHProNews954x846

 

While it is anyone’s guess how many read it there on the Trump campaign site, what is better known is that thousands of other sites picked it up, per search results. Those remained active, or Google wouldn’t have registered it.

These are details the Warren camp, other campaigns, and manufactured housing professionals from coast-to-coast should ponder.

 

The Word from Warren

Even Republicans and libertarians should consider what follows carefully. Why? Because Elizabeth Warren – with who’s campaign we’ve made clear that there are stances she holds that we disagree with – is arguably dead right about the over-arching power of Big Tech and other monopolies. That’s another issue that long-standing MHProNews readers know we share.  That’s another cheer. Here’s a blast from the cited past. Compare what Scott Galloway, of New York Stern, said about what he called the Big Four in tech.

ScottGallowayNYSternIsntAnIndictmenFourRetributionRecognitionKeyHealthyEconomicCyclisPruningFirmsWhenInvasiveCausePrematureDeathWontLetOtherFirmsEmergeMHProNews

Good policy is not partisan. What Galloway said in this previously cited quote, finds echoes in what the Warren Campaign said below.

 

Even Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Friday night loudly sang Senator Warren’s praises on this specific antitrust announcement.  Yes, he reminded his readers that he sees other topics differently, just as we are doing herein.

With that lengthy background, let’s turn to how Elizabeth Warren has kicked the hornets nest so effectively, that it has set the media across the left-right spectrum abuzz.  There’s energy.

 

 

 

WarrenElizabethWarrenCampaign

Think about all the time you spend on the internet — checking the news, shopping, catching up with old friends, reading emails like this one.

Well, more and more of the things we do online are being controlled by a smaller and smaller group of giant corporations.

They’ve mastered a very powerful business model: Monopolize their platform and force other companies, media platforms, and publishers out of business.

If you buy something online, there’s a nearly 50% chance that you’re going through Amazon. If you go to any website, there’s more than a 70% chance that it’s owned or run by Google or Facebook.

America’s biggest tech companies are controlling more and more of our digital lives.

Here’s why tech companies with nearly unfettered power aren’t a good thing: They buy potential rivals, like Facebook did with Instagram and WhatsApp, limiting innovation and choice. They create marketplaces that they own and compete on — a conflict of interest that lets them snuff out smaller rivals — like Amazon and Google have done for shopping, search tools, and online ads.

They bully cities and states into showering them with massive taxpayer handouts — and spend the profits they get from being the only game in town to lobby and rig the rules even further in their favor.

They even scare investors away from funding new startups — because what’s the use in going up against a giant corporation that’ll just snap you up or drive you out of business?

This all means less competition, less innovation, and a worse internet for all of us. Think about it: If you’re not happy with Facebook’s privacy policy, maybe you’d like to spend your time on Instagram instead. Except, wait: Facebook owns Instagram.

We’ve got to call it out. And we’ve got to do something about it. So today, I’m proposing a new plan to break up the biggest tech companies and make sure these corporations don’t get so powerful that they undermine our democracy.

There’s a long history in America of breaking up companies if they have too much power in the marketplace: Standard Oil, AT&T, and the railroad industry led to the bipartisan creation of our first antitrust laws.

What I’m proposing is right in line with our country’s history — and it’s a big part of what has allowed our economy to grow and new companies to thrive.

Here’s how our plan works — there are two big pieces to it.

#1: Pass a new law for “Platform Neutrality.”

 

If you’re a ginormous tech company that’s created a platform for other businesses to compete on — like the Amazon marketplace, or the Google ad exchange — you shouldn’t also own a company that sells on it. Put simply: You shouldn’t be able to tilt the playing field in your own direction.

 

#2 Appoint regulators who’ll use existing legal tools to unwind tech mergers that illegally undermine competition.

With the antitrust laws that are already on the books, we can undo big mergers that never should have been approved in the first place — and give smaller and medium-sized companies a fighting chance to compete with the big guys. That means we break Facebook away from Instagram and WhatsApp, Amazon away from Whole Foods, Google away from Nest, and more. We could be doing this right now — but we need a president (ahem) who’ll appoint regulators to make it happen.

So what would the internet look like after all these reforms?

Here’s what won’t change: You’ll still be able to go on Google and search like you do today. You’ll still be able to go on Amazon and find 30 different coffee machines that you can get delivered to your house in two days. You’ll still be able to go on Facebook and see how your old friend from school is doing.

Here’s what will change: Small businesses would have a fair shot to sell their products on Amazon without the fear of Amazon pushing them out of business. Google couldn’t smother competitors by demoting their products on Google Search. Facebook would face real pressure from Instagram and WhatsApp to improve their user experience and protect our privacy. Tech entrepreneurs would have a fighting chance to compete against the tech giants.

This is how we’ll make sure we get more competition and more new ideas in the tech economy, instead of just a few giant tech companies calling all the shots — and regular people not having much say in the tools we use everyday.

That’s how we get innovation. That’s how we get an internet that does a better and better job of letting us stay connected with each other — from pictures of grandkids to emails and petitions like this one. That’s how we protect our privacy in a rapidly changing world.

We can get this done. We can make big, structural change. But it’s going to take a grassroots movement, and it starts right now.

https://my.elizabethwarren.com/ew-breakupbigtech

Thanks for being a part of this,

Elizabeth

 

SenatorElizabethWarrenMA-D-WikiMastheadBlogMHProNews

Senator Elizabeth Warren, official photo.

 

 

WarrenElizabethWarrenCampaign

This morning, Elizabeth announced her new plan to break up the big tech companies like Amazon, Google, and Facebook.

Sign the petition to support Elizabeth’s plan to break up the biggest tech companies that run the internet.

That way, we’ll get more competition, more innovation, and a better internet for all of us. But it’s going to take a grassroots movement to make this kind of big, structural change.

If we’re going to rebuild the middle class, then we’ve got to ensure competition in one of our country’s biggest and fastest-growing industries and a fighting chance for up-and-coming innovators.

If we’re going to save our democracy, then we’ve got to make sure these corporations don’t get so powerful that they undermine it.

Elizabeth has spent her career fighting to level the playing field for working families. So when she says she’s in this fight to take on the powerful corporations that are rigging the system, she means business — whether it’s big banks, big Pharma, or big tech companies.

Let’s send a message loud and clear: No corporation — not even Amazon, Google, or Facebook — should be so powerful that they bend cities and states to their will, or so big that they’re exempt from antitrust laws.

Thanks for being in this fight,

Team Warren

— End of Warren Campaign extended quotes —

 

One More Thing…

 

 

We’d note one more point – linked above – for those from the Warren camp. That linked rundown on the Value Penguin site rounds out how her campaign (or any other), renters, and manufactured housing could find political alignment.

Good public policy is nonpartisan.

As we’ve been saying for years, on all things and all people, it’s about separating wheat from chaff. We would concur with Warren that there is strong evidence that the system is rigged.  Ponder how Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Donald Trump have all complained during their campaigns about the rigged system.  We see the evidence that manufactured housing was rigged. That rigging has arguably cost manufactured home owners more equity.  That rigging has cost millions of renters the opportunity to own. That rigging of the system has harmed the interests of thousands of manufactured housing independents. Longtime readers know we’ve made that case.

ClaytonHomesOakwoodHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEndof2003MHanufacturedHousingIndust

Clayton Homes, 2003. After the Buffett Berkshire Buyout.

 

Dialogue with the Warren campaign, or any other campaign that sees the value of two potentially large and often overlooked voting blocks, could bridge the gap on other issues where we do not yet see eye-to-eye.

ClaytonHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEnd2017MHanufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

While several allegations of monopolistic practices have been made against Clayton Homes and Berkshire Hathaway, this website and MHLivingNews are the only ones to date that is known to have produced evidence, and provided to date this kind of logical, relevant data. Antitrust advocates will need proof, not just hot air. Evidence of how they rigged the system taken straight form their own documents and words are linked here.

 

What is certain is that Warren, if she wants to beat Senators Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, former VP Joe Biden or others, will have to set herself apart in a way that connects. She will need even more energy. We will naturally stay in touch with the White House, Team Trump, and others too.

We’ll play close attention, engage to the degree possible, and let our audience know. If you thought that 2016 was a wild campaign, hang on to your hats.  2020 could prove to be the most energetic campaign ever. “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.

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.

Related References:

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

Radically Aspirational, Black History, Affordable Housing, Social Justice, and Manufactured Homes

 

 

 

 

 

Manufactured Housing Institute Members Defending MHI, Great Debate About Manufactured Home Industry Progress, Problems, and Profits

March 4th, 2019 No comments

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMembesDefendingMHIGreatDebateAboutManufacturedHomeINdustryProfessProblemsProfits600x315

Both of these messages are from the same person. There will be an upcoming report with on-the-record comments from an MHI board member.

 

The company of the professional quoted below has been a Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member for a number of years, and is not a member of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).

The messages were part of a longer thread, and the MHI member was addressing moi – L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, MHProNews’ publisher.

You seem pretty aggressive against MHI?  There must be history there. To me, we need groups like them to move the industry forward.  There have been some huge ups and downs but we seem to be on the rise.  I have never been in the politics of the industry.  Im just glad people out there like MHI care and are willing to spend time trying to make the industry better.”

Here’s another pull-quote, from a significantly longer, back-and-forth discussion.

Tony, No worries with offending me.  My company is connected with MHI but they have never put a dollar in my pocket.  Like everything else, I use the resources the industry has and work harder than most people daily which has been my recipe for success.” 

 

 

Shocked?  We Agree With Most of What That MHI Member Said

Editorially and logically, we agree with much of the quotes above.

  • There is history between MHProNews, and the powers that be. We were an MHI member for about 7 years.  We know the association from the inside.  I was elected by peers to be a board member on the MHI Suppliers Division. That’s history.
  • There is a need for effective post-production association leadership. The question isn’t is there a need, of course there is.  The question is, has MHI provided that role successfully?  With new home shipments declining nationally and in numerous states, during an affordable housing crisis, isn’t the obvious answer – no?
  • That MHI member said the Arlington, VA based trade group “never put a dollar in my pocket.” Yet his firm has paid money, sponsored items, and invested significant time. Closely viewed, everything that member said is an indictment of MHI, not an effective defense.  Hello?  Anyone else see a problem with that admission?

MHI award winner Marty Lavin said last year that MHI does what the big boys want, not what the others want – unless it happens to line up with the big boys desires.

 

SoTheAssociationMHIIsNotThereFortheIndustryUnlesstheinterestsoftheBigBoysJointheIndustrysMartyLavinMHIAwardWinnerQuoteMHProNe

 

Kevin Clayton said in the video on the report linked here that it would be okay with “Warren” if they lost money for “five years” so long as they grew their moat. They’ve not lost money, but they are making less money than the ought to be during an affordable housing crisis. So, let me repeat the obvious, there is no way that any investor, advocate, public official, or industry professional can understand manufactured housing since 2003 without understanding Buffett’s moat concept, and how that has played out in MHVille.

 

Odds Are This Has Impacted You For Years

  • Are you a non-Berkshire Hathaway lender? This troubling trend of apparent MHI failures impacts you.
  • Are you a non-Berkshire Hathaway producer? This ostensible trend of MHI fumbles impacts you.
  • Are you a non-Clayton Homes retailer? Then this troubling trend of purported MHI failures impacts you.
  • Have you sold a manufactured home retail center or manufactured home land-lease community in recent years? This trend has arguably cost you money.  By the way, purported market manipulation – documented here – could be cause for a class-action lawsuit.  Those are often done by plaintiffs’ attorneys who work on contingency. If this is you, touch base with us. We’ve already spoken with such attorneys, they – attorneys – see merit.
  • Note, there are attorneys who have told MHProNews that MHI could likewise be liable, given certain facts. More on that in another report.

 

We’ve navigated the various slings and arrows that the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis, their periodic surrogates like George F. (F?) Allen, Darren Krolewski, and their allies have run interference for MHI, and company when the pattern is ever more apparent.

It was about 5 years ago that this writer wrote an article The High Cost of Low Volume Sales. Within weeks, U.S. Bank exited manufactured home lending.  They were not alone.

 

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017MastheadManufacturedHousingMHProNews600

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 than a manufactured home. The cost per square foot for a manufactured home is routinely lower.

 

Low volumes of new manufactured home sales is costly. The causes of low volumes of sales are many.

 

Arrested! Triple Homicide, Arson of “Mobile Home,” Crime and Affordable Manufactured Housing Resistance

 

The report linked above explains just part of the issue that faces manufactured housing that is arguably not been addressed by MHI, or their puppet masters in the Omaha and Knoxville metros. The article below is another problematic trend that MHI et al are failing the industry on.

 

Rent Control & MH – Politicians “Are Carpet-Bombing Our State With Regulations That Will Deliberately Destabilize The Housing Market And Leave It Obliterated”

 

That’s enough for today, other than this.

We’re calling on industry independents to meet at Tunica to start the process of organizing a new post-production trade group.  It’s our aim to bring it to birth, not to operate it. MHARR is focused on production advocacy and include lending (DTS) issues too, NAMHCO is focused on communities. Who is speaking for the rest of the industry’s independents?

 

TimeOrganizePostProductionRetailSuppliersVendorsLendersOthersPostProductionFirmsMustDoWhatMHARRsBeenDoingforProducersNAMHCOforCommunitiesMHProNews

Contact Tony@MHMSM.com for meeting times at Tunica 2019 in March. Put the phrase, New MH Association Inquiry in the subject line.

 

The trend line is what it is.  This is your klaxon. Grab your favorite energy drink, and let’s get to it, shall we?  The future of independents in manufactured housing is on the line. “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.)

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!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

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.

 

Manufactured Housing’s Top 10, March 2019

Former Manufactured Housing Institute President, Manufactured Home Owners, Urban Institute, and You

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

 

Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier

Manufactured Housing Institute’s Three Stooges? SECO ‘Leaders’ George F. Allen, Spencer Roane, Tom Lackey and ‘Rent to Own’ Scams?

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Radically Aspirational, Black History, Affordable Housing, Social Justice, and Manufactured Homes

February 24th, 2019 No comments

 

RadicallyAspirationalBlackHistoryAffordableHousingSocialJusticeManufacturedHomeDrMartinLutherKingJrMastheadLATonyKovachMHProNews

Only those who are willing to struggle against the status quo ever change it.

To be radical, at its core, means to get to the heart of an issue.

 

Aspirational means a hope that is sought, hopefully one worthy of achievement.

Black history month here in the U.S. inexorably leads us to ponder the words, deeds, and examples of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  That black Baptist preacher didn’t use bullets, he used the power of inspirational ideals, organization, and words. It bears mention that King was by all accounts a flawed person, but nevertheless one who helped change this nation for the better. He is a fitting reminder of many principles. One must be willing to overlook certain weaknesses that each of us has, if we are to discover the good that each of us has to offer.

Which brings us to back to radical solutions and first principles.

 

Radix, Justice, and Affordable Manufactured Homes

Google’s dictionary definition of the word Radix includes this: a source or origin of something. “Judaism is the radix of Christianity.”

Merriam-Webster gives these slang means to the word, radical: “…slang: excellent, cool. radical. noun. Definition of radical (Entry 2 of 2) 1a : a root part.”

Radical and Radix are both Latin in origin, and their meaning includes the notion of getting to the root, origin, or the heart of an issue.

In the 7 Habits or Highly Successful People, Dr. Stephen Covey, did something that Dr. King also did. Covey was Mormon, but he like King cited the work of the Catholic thinker, Thomas Aquinas, one of the great minds from the misunderstood Middle Ages.

One must return to first principles if one is to find common ground, and solutions to often vexing problems. Why reinvent the wheel, when the solutions should be obvious?  First principles are excellent, cool and they are practical – they work. Ignore first principles at your own peril. Covey said that one must seek first to understand, then to be understood.

Understanding implies to be under something in order to grasp it more fully. The mechanic under the car understands it better than the person who merely drives it but doesn’t understand the many intricate working parts.  That service writer at a car repair shop is a communicator, a negotiator. But does he understand that car the way the mechanic does? In most cases, no.  But each role is necessary, that is why they both exist.

Social media is popular because we each want to be heard and understood. We don’t want a mere 15 minutes or fame, we want a life that is appreciated.

But all too often posturing messes up clarity of understanding. Is something that a person claims really who they are, or is it a mere costume meant to fool others?

 

IfYoureWillingtoAbandonPrinciplesConveincesocialAcceptabilityNotPrinciplesCostumeJoeConchaTheHilInspirationlMHProNews874-575x316

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/INspiration/principles-social-acceptance-and-posturing/

 

With the above in mind, let’s turn to justice of all kinds, affordable housing, public policy, and manufactured homes.

 

WhatIsWrongIsThatWedontAskWhatIsRightGKChestertonMHProNews

 

What’s Wrong? What’s Right?

In an era when tolerance is preached, but not really understood or practiced – save most commonly as a cudgel – one ought to get to the radical heart of each and every issue.

The Green New Deal, for instance, is useful because it boldly states what their own followers claim to believe. Examine that proposal, and you begin to see that socialism and the extremes of the environmental movement are cousins.  Yet conservation – a root meaning of the word, conservative – is good. One should seek to conserve or save the good, and using the principle of wheat and chaff, ignore or toss the rest.

Socialism is sold on the premise of taking from others so that someone else can have. That’s also called a redistribution of wealth. That requires governmental power. So at its core, socialism is a dictatorial system, not a Democratic or a Republican one.  Here we don’t mean those 2 party labels, but the principles that those respective party names are supposed to stand for in the first place.

Carefully examined, socialism can’t work in practice. Nor has it every worked in practice. It is contrary to the human work ethic. If you or I honestly earned X, but someone else can just take part or all of X ‘for free,’ then what protects the incentive for honest work?  My parents, who grew up in the shadow of the Soviet Union, would remind us kids that on Russia’s socialistic collective farms, the small plot of land that the farmers were allowed to keep the produce from was the most productive by far.

Of course, that’s human nature.

 

Justice and The Rule of Law

Law and social media are in a sense both neutral.   But in fact, much of each have been weaponized in recent years.  Law is necessary. Social media, kept as free as possible from manipulation and what amounts to mega-corporate spying, is useful. But once potentially good things are tainted, often only radical solutions are the only solution.

Dr. King did compromise on some items, but he did not begin with compromise. The savvy negotiator at some point asks for all that is still just.  That need not be the initial ask.  The Rev. King pushed for a wide agenda, as well as for maximum justice, in order to get real reform accomplished. He brought many together, but that also meant that divisions occurred too. He was controversial.  King was revered by some, feared and despised by others.  C’est la vie.

At the heart of King’s work was religious and morally founded teachings and beliefs. Dr. Alveda King, his niece, has noted the same, and applies that principle herself in her contemporary work.

Martin Luther King, Jr’s opponents wanted to demonize him and his work. It’s an ancient trick. King’s opponents spied on him. They learned of his human weaknesses. They wanted to turn those weaknesses into the issue, in order to destroy the chance for King to accomplish his end goal.  That goal ML King had was for a more just society.

Dr. ML King didn’t ask for reparations for slavery. King didn’t want socialism. He wanted equality, and for him character counted more than skin color. Rephrased, King wanted biblical principles applied.

 

TheFunctionofEducationIsTeachOnThinkIntensivelyThinkCriticallyIntelligencePlusCharaterThatstheGoalofTrueEudcationMartinLutherKingJrMHProNEws

What is true justice?

 

HumanitiesValueBusinessCriticismWhenGoingAlongGetAlongWhereWhistleblowersDiscouragedBadThingsHappenBusinssesImplodeMarthaNussbaumQuote

 

Who can better answer that question than God who created all?

My 12 year old son can simply explain why we can know with confidence that a Creator of all exists. Historically, we know that the oldest faith is the Jewish faith, and from that religion sprang others like Christianity or later still, Islam. All three of those faiths claim historical roots to God through Divine revelations made to the person of Abraham.

What does this have to do with housing, justice, or public policy? Ask the founding fathers, and they would tell you, it has everything to do with it, because housing is private property.  For the founders, faith and a just society were inseparable.

 

OfAllDispositionsHabitsPoloticalProspertityReligionMoralityIndispensable-GeorgeWashington-pic=WikiCommons-postedMHProNews-

The founders weren’t perfect either, but their genius was a clearer sense of history, morality, God and reason.

 

King did not disparage the founders of America. Slavery has sadly long existed for thousands of years, and still does in many parts of the modern world. Slavery today has merely changed its name and forms. King viewed the founders as aspirational, inspirational, and saw that they began a work toward freedom that he and his colleagues wanted to complete.

 

BookerTWashingtonQuoteNothingEverComesToOneThatIsWorthHavingExceptAsAResultofHardWordBookerTWashingtonQuoteMastheadTonyKovachMHProNews

 

The battle today isn’t a false choice between capitalism and socialism. Both, properly understood, are problematic. On this Masthead blog – the editorial platform for MHProNews – we believe in free enterprise, because God did so first.

Free enterprise is in a cool sense ‘pure capitalism,’ not tainted crony capitalism, conquest capitalism, vulture capitalism, or monopolistic capitalism. The later – once understood – are to be strongly rejected.

Look again at God’s simple-yet-profound Ten Commandments, because the founders did, and so did Booker T Washington, Abraham Lincoln, or ML King – among millions of others. All good Law should be based upon those ten principles. That’s simple, radical, and it is always what’s right.  No one knows humanity better than our Designer and Creator.  Those 10 exist not as constraints, but as principles of love that bind all together in a just society of peace.

Moses elaborated to an extent in explaining how those Ten Commandments were to be lived out. Centuries later, the Jewish rabbi Jesus took the ten, and simplified them to just two. Love God, love your neighbor.

ML King said love alone conquers hate.

Love is not mere passion or emotion. Love wills the good of the other.  So love embraces pure passion, but true love isn’t about mere self-gratification.  Love doesn’t mean you must like the other.  They are distinctive principles.

There are those in public service and in the mega-corporate world – as opposed to small-to-mid-sized businesses and professionals – that want to impose their will on others. They may not call it slavery, but that is what control is ultimately about.  Those who can’t accept honest dissent and debate are at some subtle level, dictatorial and self-absorbed too.

Good law wills the good of all, not only the good of a select and favored few.

Today, monopolistic forces are at work in business, and in government.  That is routinely true of government at all levels, not only the federal one.  Those who won’t read the New York Times – only because it is the NY Times – are as prone to missing the truth as those who won’t consider what’s on Fox News, just because it is on Fox.

The New York Times carried a thoughtful column that explained how numbers of industries are being monopolized.  That column by David Leonhardt didn’t mention manufactured housing, but monopolization is occurring in manufactured housing too. Arguably the primary one doing so has shrunk the industry, in order to increase his firm’s market share at a discount.

Those who monopolize are power seekers.

It is noteworthy that those monopolists who build their “Moat”  violate the Ten Commandments on several levels, which are not the focus of this column.  Some of those uber-billionaires are happy to promote socialists. Why?  Not because they want to give away their own wealth, because if billionaires wanted to do that, they could do so at any time without government intervention.

Rather, socialist promises of the ‘give away’ of ‘free stuff’ taken by ‘progressive taxation’ or ‘redistribution of wealth’ are mere masks.  They are the ultimate con game.  Just ask the starving and suffering Venezuelans of today. Or the Russian who bought that same lie in the pre-Soviet Union. Ask the Chinese who bought the lies spread by Mao.  Or ask the Cubans who bought the lies of Fidel Castro and his cronies. Or ask the Germans who bought that lie from Adolf Hitler.  Never forget that the fascists of Italy and the Nazis were just different nationalistic brands of socialism. The name Nazi was a contraction – National Socialists.  Note that none of the above were faith-filled people seeking to live out the 10 Commandments, rather, they were power-hungry people.

The loss of private property, a kind of slavery, police states, and death were the results of each of those experiments in socialism and communism. The report linked below from the text/image box that follows demonstrates university level research into those movements. Their wars and murder of their own people make the conflicts over religion seem like a picnic.  Hundreds of millions of souls died at the hands of those who practiced various branches of socialistic thinking.

 

“Death by Government,” Fascism, Communism, Socialism, ‘Big Brother,’ per Williams, Rummel and Owens

 

So, when the uber-rich posture supporting some candidate for president – or any other elected office – that claims to want to implement socialism, don’t buy what they are selling. Every con promises something that someone wants.  Every seduction begins with the promise of pleasure, but that fleeting feeling often quickly yields to pain for the many harmed once seduced.  Socialism is often voted in, but it has also often required armed conflict to have it removed.

In manufactured housing, there are some who are aware of the monopolization of the industry. Some are aware of the harm that moat-building has caused to the proper understanding of manufactured housing, and how it can help solve the affordable housing crisis. But some smaller-to-midsized players are not necessarily fighting the dominate ones who are building their moats.  Why?  There are many reasons.  But one of them can be summed up like this.

They too want to benefit from the work of the moat-builders. The rest are details and commentary.

What all those who get it but have not yet acted fail to consider are painful lessons of history, which Warren Buffett – a self-proclaimed student of history himself – has observed.

In Communist Cuba, Russia, China, or in Nazi Germany, some who stood by or who aided those who sought to take power themselves were later ousted, stripped of their property, and in numerous cases, killed.  Play with fire, and you may get burned.

You don’t have to understand his every tweet or agree with his methods.  But let’s give President Donald J. Trump his due.  He was right in saying that socialism is about power.  Socialism depends on what Hitler and his propaganda minister called the notion of the Big Lie. Repeat a lie often enough, said Hitler, and numbers of people will come to believe it.

The best antidote to a lie is the truth.  That’s why at its core, much of what is vexing America is a struggle between lies often told, or truth that is at times ignored or suppressed, vs. the pure truth of any given subject.

The best argument, it’s been said, against Christianity (or any other religion) are the believers of that faith.  We are all hypocrites to some degree. Dr. King was a womanizer, and his enemies wanted to use that against him. To that point and others – much like you, me, or anyone else – there are times that we fail or are hypocritical.

But the inspiration of God is that eternal call from the fall back up toward redemption.

In affordable housing, public policies have caused or contributed to the problems that exist. Barring people from owning manufactured homes – especially given how proven they are to serve millions well – is just one of many examples of the broader issues that plague our great nation.

 

MostMenAppearnNeverConsideredWhatHouseIsNeedlesslyPoorAllTheirLivesHenryDavidThoreauManufacturedHomeLivingNews

Each photo is of a modern manufactured home, which can be 2400 sq ft or more in size, 1 or 2 levels, set over a basement, or can be as modest as 320 sq ft. These homes are all built to federal construction and safety standards that went into effect on June 15, 29176, administered by HUD, and are thus known as “HUD Code Manufactured Homes.”

 

InfographicMobileManufacturedHomeManufacturedHousingIndustryFactsDataResearchMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNews-445x768

 

Yes, America is a great nation, not because it is perfect.  We are not yet under the tyranny of socialism.  Our American ancestors fought to end slavery.  We fought to establish greater civil rights. We fought to end the tyranny of the Nazis, and so much more.

We Americans – a melting pot – arguably ought to fight to end the monopolization of our society by the FAANG brands, or Berkshire Hathaway, and Microsoft. We ought to #DeFaangBM.  We ought to break up the monopolies, as the conservationist president Teddy Roosevelt did.

TeddyRooseveltMastheadBlogTonyKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHPronews

 

Because in the end, the moat-building monopolists are the hidden-in-plain-sight drivers of much of the social, economic, and political ills that our times endures.  That’s not to say that others besides the FAANGs or BM shouldn’t be broken up – legally – under antitrust laws.  There are no doubt more that should be considered for a break up under anti-monopoly laws too.

At the root of it all is the problem of sin – a violation of those Ten Commandments.  That’s old fashioned, which is why it should be more trusted.  Everything else will fail, but following those 10 principles as faithfully as one can would lead us to a more just world.

In that more just world, we would not try to stop someone from having an affordable, safe home.

In a just world, we would not stop someone from peacefully practicing their beliefs, or even allowing them to proclaim it in non-violent ways.

There is truth and there are falsehoods.  There is protecting the rights to private property, which was part of our founding, and which Martin Luther King, Jr. wanted for his fellow humans of all colors. There are rights to religious liberty, and all of those goods that the Bill of Rights established under our system of constitutionally limited government.

Protecting individual rights is what is at the heart of the American Way.  Breaking up monopolists has long been a part of our American legal tradition.

That’s the struggle.  Freedom vs slavery.  Justice vs. injustice. Right vs. wrong.  God’s way vs. the way of those who oppose what is Godly. In that context, we support the struggle for manufactured homes, and all other rights that are in keeping with the will of the God who created us.

I asked my 12 year old son, before finishing this article, how can we know that God exists? Many doubt or deny God exists.  He smiled and said, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” And, “Which came first, the acorn or the oak tree?” Simple.

God created the chicken, who laid eggs, said my son, Tamas (sounds like “tah mash,” Hungarian for Thomas or Tom).  God created the oak tree, which drops its acorns to reproduce.

Only radical solutions – those that get to the simple heart of an issue – are cool and excellent enough to work. To learn more, see the related reports, linked below the byline and disclosures. “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.)

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!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

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.

 

Grasping True Value of the Green New Deal for America, Affordable Housing Professionals and Advocates

New York Times-David Leonhardt-“The Monopolization of America,” Manufactured Housing Slant

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

 

Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier

Puzzling Case of Millie Francis, Where are Religious Liberty, Fair Housing, Resident, and Manufactured Home Organizational Defenders?

 

Who Will Act? Will Senator Elizabeth Warren, and/or the Trump Administration Act to Restore Open Markets, Thereby Supporting Affordable Manufactured Homes?

The First Step to Problem Solving and #HousingChoice

 

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

February 9th, 2019 No comments

 

ConquestCapitalismThoughtsofChairmanWarrenBuffettBillionaresCampaigntoControlTrillionDollarAffordableHousngMarketDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The year was 1998. It happened to be the year that manufactured housing hit its last peak, but it was also the year that Simon Reynolds compiled and published “Thoughts of Chairman Buffett – Thirty Years of Unconventional Wisdom from the Sage of Omaha.”

 

ThoughtsofChairmanBuffettThirtyYearsUnventionalWisdomSageofOmahaSimonReynoldsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsUntil you turn to the back of Reynold’s book, not many pages in my copy of his thin volume are even numbered. Starting on page 141 are the following subheadings, bulleted below.  With those one can start the journey of understanding Buffett and his success formula.

 

  • Think Long Term
  • Buy Businesses You Understand

 

After the second bullet, you find this quote, “Remember his [Buffett’s]Circle of Competence theory. Step outside of it and the vultures will begin to gather. Stick to investing in industries you know something about.  When you have a feel for how the game is played, you are much more likely to score a home run…”

Later, Reynolds says this…

Part of understanding a company is understanding its management team. Are the executives competent?

Are they experienced? Or, as Buffett would say, are they fanatics?”

 

  • Don’t Overdiversify

You can’t be Bo Jackson in investing. Spread your energy and capital too many ways and you are courting disaster.”

For those who don’t know – or need a refresher on – Bo Jackson, here it is.

 

BoJacksonBaseballFootballWarrenBuffettQuoteMastheadBlogDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Disclosure

We are editorially pro-free enterprise.  But for reasons that will be understood from the research and linked reports, our publication is a Buffett critic.  Some believe he ‘saved’ manufactured housing in 2003.  Did he save this industry, or rather, did he start his conquest of it?

The evidence-to-date suggests that the third-richest man on the planet has purportedly mastered the art of the conceal with respect to manufactured housing.

After years of Buffett and industry research – plus my roughly quarter-century of direct involvement in this profession – there are many things that Buffett says that ought to be understood through these prisms.

  • What Warren Buffett said,
  • What he means.
  • The head fake.

Buffett is routinely selling. First, he is selling himself.

Then, he is selling his business and investing model.  There are plenty of takers on that, in investing, business, media, politics, and so on.

Third, Buffett is coy. Some things he says are straightforward and spot on. Other statements from Buffett have a veiled or hidden meaning. As a critic, let me note anew that with all people or organizations, the principle of ‘wheat and chaff‘ should be applied. Learn what to keep and utilize, but also learn via discernment what ought to be ignored, discarded, or understood in a different fashion than what the speaker may imply.

 

Conquest Capitalism

Let’s begin to popularize or coin a new phrase. Not crony capitalism. Not vulture capitalism. It isn’t a phrase from Reynolds’ book.

In Buffet-World, it is all about we what we are hereby going to dub “Conquest Capitalism.”

Buffett uses capital, information, headwinds, and understanding – including the essentials of human nature, and human weaknesses – to conquer.  “The Moat” is a term for the strategic principles used by Buffett in conquest capitalism. 

Conquest capitalism occurs through capital and the understanding and maneuvering of basic principles. Some of those are noted in Reynolds thin volume, like those quoted above or what follows.

Here’s a gem under the heading, “On Independence” – “You have to think for yourself. It always amazes me how high-IQ people mindlessly imitate. I never get good ideas talking to other people.” So said Buffett, claims Reynolds, citing U.S. News and World Report, June 20, 1994.

Or this “There’s something about smart people explaining ideas to an orangutan that makes their decision making better.”

Or “…people are creatures of habit.” Know right now that Buffett and his Berkshire brands count on that, big time. He counts on your habits. Buffett and his acolytes count on the habits of your team, and the habits of millions of others too.

Uncertainty actually is the friend of the buyer of long-term values,” said Buffett per Forbes 8.6.1979. Reynolds has that under the heading, “On the Advantage of Chaos.”

Buffett is also quoted saying “… – it’s the weak link that snaps you. And frequently, in the financial markets, the weak link is borrowed money.”

One could go on, but that’s more than enough Buffett quotes to outline what follows.  On his borrowed-money point, consider the reports linked here and here.  Arguably, no one can grasp why manufactured housing is as small as it is today without reading and understanding the nuances of those two reports, and others like it.

Buying and selling housing in the U.S. is a multi-trillion dollar proposition over the course of a decade. Last year, per the sources cited in the infographic below, sales of new and existing single family-homes and condos equaled about $1.6 trillion dollars in 2018 alone.

What the data reveals is that manufactured housing, properly understood, could take a huge leap ahead of its currently poor sales levels.  If you are an investor pondering this sector – or are already in manufactured housing – be mindful that the growth potential is stunning.

But if so, the curious mind should ask questions like this one. Why hasn’t MHI – or Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage and Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance for that matter – done a better job of marketing or advocacy on issues like zoning and placement, financing parity, and other key obstacles?

Or why have the powers that be that flow from Omaha to Knoxville, TN and into Arlington, VA seem to constantly be in motion, with so little to show for it at year’s end?  Isn’t there plenty of demand for affordable housing?

Ponder the 2018 factoids, data, and quotes that follow in this infographic.

 

2018DataShareofHousingMarketManufacturedHousingInfographicDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews612

The headline for this article includes the word “billionaires,” plural. There are more than one in the hunt, so that is not a typo. But Buffett has a clear edge at this time. One of his close friends, Bill Gates – whose Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Buffett is a trustee of – has been exposed to Clayton Homes and manufactured housing too.

 

When you examine years of research, what you may learn by considering the history of MHVille is this. The Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis are posturing activity that seems to the casual observer to aim at promoting growth, or removing regulatory barriers. That said, note that the powers-that-be are not using their best possible arguments for zoning or other issues. The text/image boxes below are each hot-linked to a report on that topic.

 

State of the Industry 2019 – Reality vs. Potential for Manufactured, Modular, and PreFab Homes? New Infographic

 

Meanwhile, Berkshire’s market share in manufactured housing grows.

 

ClaytonHomesOakwoodHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEndof2003MHanufacturedHousingIndust

Clayton Homes, 2003. After the Buffett Berkshire Buyout.

 

They are making billions now. But through patience and conquest capitalism, manufactured homes could swell into one of the largest growth industries in the nation.

 

ClaytonHomesBerkshireHathawayMarketShareofManufacturedHousingEnd2017MHanufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

Clayton claims they had ‘only’ about 47.7 percent of the market at the end of 2017. Other sources indicate the total could be 50 percent. Either way, the Moat is working.

 

Steady persistence is an element of the Buffett play.

YouMHProNewsSeemToHaveConceptualIQThatIsMoreImportantThanSpellingAbilityQuoteMastheadMHProNews

Quote from an MHI member, business executive.

Had Buffett’s Berkshire tried to buy the entire industry in 2003 – which his resources could have allowed him to do – regulatory alarms would have sounded.  Patience allows him several luxuries. One is less regulatory scrutiny. Less chance for antitrust action.

Two, patience in a depressed industry sector allows him to acquire pieces of manufactured housing at a bargain “value,” which is also part of the Berkshire Moat model.

 

 

 

While You and Others Sleep

While you are running your path today, Buffett’s zealous business-unit leaders and their minions are waging a slow-motion war. Their leaders are taught to think long-term. Most others in this industry are thinking only about today, this week, month, or quarter.

That’s part of what allows conquest capitalist tactics – including that strategic Moat they use –  to beat competitors over time.

Some sell out to Clayton, or one of the other big three firms that dominate manufactured housing.  About 5 years before Berkshire entered manufactured housing in 2003, the three biggest firms had about 44 percent market share, said Buffett in an annual letter to shareholders.  Today, three firms have about 80 percent, and those 3 are all different than what existed 20 years ago.

Somewhat related, the SEC, it should be noted, will not yet say what stock(s) Joe Stegmayer, former Chairman and President of Cavco Industries and still Chairman of MHI, invested in that purportedly caused their legal fracas to erupt.

Over a dozen shareholders’ plaintiffs attorney firms are circling MHI member Cavco.

As a factoid, before going to Cavco, Stegmayer used to be a division president for Clayton. The growth at Cavco occurred after 2003, the same year that Buffett bought into MHVille. Coincidence?

Nor will the SEC say what investigation, if any, they are doing regarding possible collusion between various brands in manufactured housing. But if there were no investigations underway, wouldn’t the SEC just say so? We know from other sources that the CFPB and HUD are investigating the Berkshire brands in manufactured housing. Time will tell what comes of it.

 

Information and Disinformation

It isn’t just information, it is disinformation, that the Omaha-Knoxville and their nonprofit cat’s paw in Arlington, VA use.

Buffett and Clayton frankly don’t need their pawns in Arlington to understand anything. That’s not to demean anyone at MHI.  Rather, it is a simple reality. As long as MHI staffers do what Omaha-Knoxville want, as they want it – their ‘job’ is secure.  They can fail or succeed, it matters not for the purposes of their Moat.  The Illusion of Motion is what matters.

So there is no need for a conspiracy theory. The folks at Arlington could be Buffett’s proverbial “orangutan– see quote above – and that part of their strategic Moat system will work just as well.

From Buffett’s tower in Omaha, does it matter if MHI is hopelessly inept and ineffective at their claimed goals? Does it matter if MHI is cagily corrupted? Or some mix of those?  How did the manufactured home industry – which once outsold RVs 3 to 2 about 2 decades ago – slide so far that it now trails RVs by some 5 to 1?  What coach could keep their job with such poor performance?

Unless poor performance is okay? Who would pay bonuses for performance facts like that?

 

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017MastheadManufacturedHousingMHProNews600

In 1998, 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 than a manufactured home. The cost per square foot for a manufactured home is routinely lower.

 

Failure or success by MHI – either can suit the needs of the Berkshire brands.  Meanwhile, conquest capitalism is purportedly deploying the Moat to strike at the Achilles heels of various manufactured housing organizations’ interests

Rephrased, Buffett’s brands deploy capital – Buffett’s term – plus a clever blend of spin that includes facts, near facts, missed facts, and the confident trust that many won’t check the facts.

Plus, he counts on the fact that you and tens of millions won’t read, study, think, and plan as long-term as he and his colleagues do.

That’s a possible weak link. Because as soon as someone does thoughtfully study, in large part by looking objectively in detail backwards, one sees the picture that hundreds of millions miss.

 

InBusinessWorldTheRearViewMirrorIsALwaysClearerThantheWindshieldWarrenBuffettVASpapinquoteManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

If you don’t pay attention to history, trends, and plan years ahead, Buffet’s conquest capitalism can sneak up one day and crush you. Another example, linked here.

 

Several thousand will read this column. I can’t say quite how many going in, but the rear view mirror trend lines suggest that our audience will find this topic of keen interest. Those thousands of readers will include the serious, as well as the merely curious.

It’s the few who are zealously informed and focused on ‘never quit until victory’ who will end up making the difference.

With some $500 billion of new capital coming back or into the U.S. in 2018 as a result of the tax cuts and jobs act of 2017, plus the Trump Administration regulatory reforms, this is possibly the best time in years to challenge Berkshire’s Moat.

 

CNBCCapitalIntoUSSinceTaxCutsJobAct500billionto1TrillionMastheadBlog

 

The Clayton retailers and Knoxville lenders’ can be outperformed. We’ve seen it done. We know those who are doing it in specific markets. On the consulting side of our operation, we’ve been part of several projects that have done it and are doing it at their local level.

 

That’s the introduction. Here’s the balance of the opening headline.

Corruption is rampant in America. That doesn’t mean that most are corrupt. That’s not necessary. It does mean that you can effectively buy off a few key people in high, important roles, and influence events in ways that few can imagine.

It means that billionaires can collude in ways that the SEC, FTC, or DOJ might not consider. We respect law enforcement, but one need not look far to see examples of justice gone awry in America.

So, if the Feds do get it on what’s happening in MHVille, they may or may not be willing to try undertake the effort to stop the collusion of the “conquest capitalists.”

Few should better understand than manufactured housing professionals how much misinformation is out there about our misunderstood industry.  Yet those misunderstandings are accepted as true.  Where is MHI’s efforts to correct the record?  Or to promote and explain the reality vs. the myth?

 

Our widely misunderstood industry is the wake up call for affordable housing industry pros. Misunderstanding is also the wake-up call for investors.  There is demonstrably no more proven solution to the affordable housing crisis than manufactured homes.  How is it even possible that it is so misunderstood?

 

InfographicMobileManufacturedHomeManufacturedHousingIndustryFactsDataResearchMobileManufacturedHomeLivingNews-445x768

2018 infographic with 2017 data.

 

Misinformation can be Opportunities in Disguise

A source with deep ties to Clayton Homes said that they have a two to three year plan to roll out 1,000 to 1,200 Clayton retail centers within a two to three year time span. To most, that defies belief. We have no documentation to reference, it’s a discussion, per sources. Unlike other tips, there is no evidence we have seen yet for that claim. It might even be a false flag.

But is it possible? With Buffett’s billions, of course it is.

If it is true, that number of new retail locations would mean that every remaining independent is no longer necessary to Clayton. The dust hasn’t settled yet on the story linked below. But that recent – and still ongoing issue – is an example of how bold Clayton is already behaving.

 

“Mobile Home Militia,” Retail/Production Sources, Sound Alarm Against Clayton Homes, CMH, New “Anti-Competitive Practices” Allegation

 

Part of the word heard is that Clayton, following our report linked above, reached out to Regional Enterprises to try to ‘mend the fence’ that CMH allegedly busted. But however that scenario wraps up, it is a huge wake- up call to the industry’s independents, isn’t it?

The similar story below was exactly one year ago.  No one else in the industry trades other than MHProNews covered either one. Why not?

 

How Many MH Independents, Retailers Have Been Lost Recently? “They Think They Own Us”

 

Or where are the other trade publishers on this third-party report, linked below?

 

Examining Derek Thompson’s Atlantic Report on ‘Mobile Home’ Retail Market as Fastest Dying Business In America

 

It is very possible that Buffett and the folks in Knoxville have the following in mind. They are clearly supporting mostly Democratic candidates. They got a lot done – from their conquest vantage point – during the Obama Administration.

Well before the 2018 midterms were over, the 2020 contests were already underway. More precisely, as 2016 results became known, the battle for 2020 was launched. Buffett and his buddies are already deep in the hunt for those who will advance their agenda.

 

buffett-obama-mhmsm

Warren Buffett, left. President Barack Obama, right. Credit, Wikipedia.

 

For those who buy into those photo ops of ‘MHI leaders’ with administration or elected officials and their staffs, never forget that you don’t get more influential that the photos on this page.

 

WarrenBuffettBarackObamaAwardMedalMastheadManufacturedHOusingIndustryMHproenws

Warren Buffett’s grandson worked in the Obama Administration White House. You don’t get much closer to than that in terms of access. So MHI’s arguably red herring photos of MHI staff or board members with some representative or administration member, how does that compare to this? If Warren Buffett had wanted regulatory relief during the Obama years, don’t you think he could have had it? Isn’t it all part of his strategic Moat?

ManufacturedHousingIndustryInsightsManufacturedHousingInstituteMHICartoonMastheadCommentarySatireMHProNewsLifeStyleFactoryHomesLLC

MHIEmeraldCityOzManufacturedHousingIndustryManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIhumorsatireparodyMHProNews

It wasn’t until after we first published satire like this that MHI’s ‘engaged lobbyists’ reached out to the CFPB, and asked the business-friendly Trump Administration to consider changes that MHI claims to have been working on for years. Who said? A source at the CFPB.

RichardDickJennisonMHIPresidentPhotoBrianMontgomeryEnhancedPreemptionFHATitleChattelLoans1010RuleTimWilliamsDontLearnFromHist

We took MHI photos and turned them into satire. Instead of attempting to refute what MHProNews or MHARR reports, MHI has been using photo op images – like the one above – to ‘prove’ how much influence they have in Washington, D.C. and beyond. But you don’t get much more influence than Warren Buffett sitting with then President Obama do you? Why is mainstream housing roaring, and manufactured homes snoring? Why do MHI staff get bonuses? Photos are fine, but where are the measurable results for millions spent every year on lobbying, meetings, and promotion?

 

The Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington head fake is –  as Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO of MHARR aptly put it – the illusion of motion and activity. When was the last time a con artist confessed until formally charged with crimes?

Factory-built homes are potentially a trillion-dollar-a-year industry. Patience and conquest capitalism is winning, and there is no reason to think that won’t continue. Unless the ploys are exposed, and then arguably the axis and their allies have to be defeated.

If we were wrong about our analysis of the facts and evidence, why doesn’t Knoxville and Arlington accept the offer to publicly refute our concerns? Why don’t they accept the offer to publicly discuss these issues, to be video recorded for later reply, in front of an audience of manufactured home industry independents?  Why not have the mainstream media attend such a discussion/debate?

Only in hindsight and by peeling away at enough layers of the onion does the fact-pattern and logic of their strategy become clear. The rest are details and commentary. See the linked text-image boxes for more details.

Investing? It would be hard to find a better bet than manufactured homes. Go back to the top and author Reynold’s quotes.  Grasp how logical affordable housing is as a business to invest in.  But to be successful, one must know how the game is played. Because the system, while arguably rigged, can be profitably beaten. Several are in the process of challenging the system, even as this is being written.

 

 

The Late Howard Walker and “The Book”

The late Howard Walker, Vice-Chairman for Equity LifeStyle Properties told me that “the money is in a book.” In context, he meant that the right book about manufactured housing was worth a fortune.

Properly understood, Walker’s point was arguably correct.

Whatever Simon Reynolds may have earned from “Thoughts of Chairman Buffett – Thirty Years of Unconventional Wisdom from the Sage of Omaha” was only a drop in the bucket compared to what is possible from shrewd investments combined with P.E.P. in manufactured housing.

unzipped-green-eye-black-background-collage-manufactured-housing-professionals-mhpronews-com-704x872pic-framed-

Protect. Educate. Promote – P.E.P. Officials. Advocates. Investors. The public. They are looking for us. Graphic credit, MHProNews, all rights reserved.

Not a ton of money from a book per se, but rather from the lessons that Buffett and his strategic/economic “conquest capitalism” Moat yields.

 

  • Some don’t fight the Moat because they don’t understand it.
  • Some don’t fight the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis and their allies out of fear. We’ll explore the question of extortion and lack of options another time.
  • Some don’t fight it because they believe they benefit from it too. As Buffett Moat crowds out smaller players, some of the mid-sized ones think they can gain market share as well.
  • Some are the axis that makes up the Moat proper.

The industry is poised to be disrupted again, for a variety of reasons already in motion. The case could be made that this is the best time in decades to jump into manufactured housing, or to expand through prudent challenges to the Moat builders.  Because either out of patience, or whatever other reasons one cares to mention, Clayton and company are underperforming too.

So motivated, focused, well capitalized, disruptive performers could get in, and blow by them in just a few years. That will be explored too in an upcoming column.

The Moat and conquest capitalism are the truth hiding in plain sight.

To learn more about the Moat, see the linked related reports, further below. “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.)

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!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

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.

Surprising Discovery on Manufactured Housing’s Enhanced Preemption, Hidden Gem$

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

Positive, Uplifting Third-Party Reports Favor Modern Manufactured Housing, So What’s Going Wrong?

 

“Democrats Are Sinful Hypocrites. Just Like All of Us.” Weaponizing Information, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and MHVille

 

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

Warren Buffett’s Moat, Understanding Manufactured Housing Requires Grasping Strategic Economic Moats

January 31st, 2019 No comments


WarrenBuffettsMoatClaytonHomesBerkshireHathaway21stMortgageUnderstandingManufacturedHOmesRequiresGraspingStretegicEconomicMoatsMHProNews

When someone is introduced to manufactured homes and their tremendous value, they are often shocked. ‘How is this much home for such a modest price possible?’

 

A key part of the answer mirrors any product produced in a production center.  Cars built in a driveway would cost far more than a car built in production center. A house built in the weather costs far more, and would take longer, than one built indoors.

After the blinders disappear, a common reaction is this question. ‘Why aren’t more manufactured homes being sold?’

 

 

That valid question is akin to the question the Urban Institute asked last year.

 

UrbanWireHousingandHousingFinanceManufacturedHomesCouldEaseAffordableHousingCrisisSoWhyAreSoFewBeingMadeMHProNews

https://www.urban.org/urban-wire/manufactured-homes-could-ease-affordable-housing-crisis-so-why-are-so-few-being-made The report is a mix of useful and questionable insights. It is referenced as an example of the Moat at work. It is also arguably a ‘reply’ to our pressure on MHI and Berkshire brands in manufactured housing.

 

But the Urban Institute didn’t disclose possible conflicts of interest – including, but not limited to – Warren Buffett being a lifetime trustee of their nonprofit. Does that insight help explain why that Urban Institute article that had 4 co-authors was crafted as it was? Or why the respected Urban Institute researchers fail to mention the behind-the-scenes input by Chairman Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway owned Clayton Homes in that nonprofit’s January 2018 report on manufactured homes?

The answer to so many of the riddles about manufactured homes lies in the proper understanding of Buffett’s vision about strategic economic Moats. Understand this, and the key that unlocks the door to understanding begins to open.

 

 

Buffett’s Vision of “The Moat”

Buffett’s moat concept goes well beyond Berkshire. Its arguably influencing much of America’s economic, political, educational, or even social and moral life.

Almost everything can be weaponized to work for the advancement of “the Moat.”

A moat in BuffettWorld is a slow motion tool to conquer – build a monopoly – in any given industry. The meme below wasn’t made by us, but the quote serves to make a useful point, from Buffett’s viewpoint.

 

WarrenBuffettTheMoatQuoteMemeManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNEws

 

Understand that my writing about the moat should be understood as our editorially disagreeing with this anti-competitive approach.

We study and report on such an issue as a necessary step to foil what is perhaps the affordable housing industry’s greatest foe.  To defeat a powerful opponent, one must thoroughly understand what one is battling.

You may be the best builder of manufactured housing in America. You might be the best provider of financial services, or be good at retail sales, or whatever else. “The Moat” is at quietly work against your interests, period — unless you are allied with it. If you are allied with “the Moat,” it’s not fast wealth, it’s slow wealth that grows your market share.

The whole-time people working to broaden and deepen the Berkshire Moat in Manufactured Housing are smiling and praising you, they simultaneously be can be working to undermine you. This I know, because it happened to our business interests, and we’ve had others explain their experiences.  I’ve said mea culpa before and am confessing anew my prior naiveite.  The school of hard knocks is what aroused my yen to grasp what is happening to manufactured housing, and that forced me to learn more.

To spare reader’s redundancy and to keep ‘the powers that be’ attorneys from rattling sabers (again), what’s described herein are allegations.  The evidence in support of these contentions are found from articles linked from this post.

Moat-builders want whatever is yours at a discount. That’s a key to Buffett’s notion of “value investing.”

 

A Decade Ago

It was about 10 years ago that an article for the now defunct Manufactured Home Merchandiser Magazine your Masthead writer penned explained why Warren Buffett and Sam Zell where two reasons why the manufactured housing industry would survive its worst downturn ever.

As a brief segue, Zell and his operations are a separate question worthy of study, but this column is focused on Buffett and his moat principles.

In hindsight, that Merchandiser article had correct and missed points.  Buffett didn’t want to save manufactured housing.  Rather, he arguably set out to conquer manufactured housing.  The modus operandi for that conquest was the moat.  He bought at an industry low point.

Then, the industry went still lower.

While the industry shrank, Buffett’s Berkshire brands share of manufactured housing grew.  Coincidence?  Hardly.

I’ve had a book, “Quotes from the Chairman” – Buffett – on my shelf years before that Merchandiser column. Even as a mild-Buffett watcher, I frankly didn’t understand the moat until the last 24 months.

Even during the last 2 years, my understanding of the Machiavellian brilliance of the moat has grown in stages.  It may be that no one outside of the Knoxville metro better understands the Moat than your Masthead writer does.

I’ve personally invited the following to publicly discuss or debate the issues and concerns that relate to manufactured housing that we’ve raised. Those invitations to provide live or written comments have included, but not been limited to:

  • Kevin Clayton, President and CEO of Clayton Homes – a Berkshire Hathaway brand.
  • Tim Williams, President and CEO of 21st Mortgage Corp – another Berkshire Hathaway company that finances manufactured housing for independents. Williams is the former Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Chairman.
  • Tom Hodges, JD, Clayton’s attorney and who sits on the MHI Executive Committee,
  • Joe Stegmayer, former Clayton unit president, who went to what became Cavco Industries, and is the current MHI Chairman.
  • Nathan Smith, SSK Communities partner, Democratic player, a former MHI Chairman and the current MHI PAC Chair, and thick with Berkshire brands.
  • Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison, MHI President and CEO.
  • Lesli Gooch, Ph.D, MHI EVP and chief lobbyist.
  • Richard ‘Rick’ Robison, author, attorney and MHI’s general counsel.

Note many of the above – including Kevin’s father, Jim Clayton – at various times praised our pro-industry, pro-growth, pro-consumer work publicly. That was true up to about 2 years ago, when we apparently began asking – from their point-of-view – the ‘wrong questions.’  Once we asked the wrong questions, we became persona non-grata to be driven out of business. That’s simultaneously when they stopped directly replying to MHProNews or MHLivingNews.

But they can be understood as replying to us via surrogates, attorneys, and other tactics that are meant to shake us off the trail we’ve embarked upon.

Buffett’s Berkshire owns some 31 newspapers.  Why don’t those papers cover manufactured housing better, more objectively, more favorably, or more often? Why don’t those BH Media Group papers set the record straight on manufactured housing?  Buffett understands synergy.  It seems like common sense, doesn’t it?

Only the correct understanding of “the Moat” explains riddles like the one about BH Media.

 

ExistingHomeSales2018ReportJan22-2019YChartsNARMastheadDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Housing sales are a trillion dollar plus a year industry. More specifically, existing home sales for 2018 will be about 4.99 million units, with an average price of $293,500.00 per housing unit, per Y Data, which cites the National Association of Realtors™ (NAR).

That would be equal to about $1,464,565,000,000, or $1.465 trillion.

New conventional housing single family home sales, per the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), are at the seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 629,000 units at about $318,000 average sales price. That’s about $200,022,000,000 or 200 billion a year.

So total existing and new single-family housing sales are an estimated $1,664,587,000,000, for some 5.629 million units in 2018, per the sources cited.

Contrast that with manufactured homes at an average sales price of $78,900, per Census Bureau data reported in December 2018, for the period of July 2018.  Manufactured home sales are projected to finish the year at about 100,000 (+/-) new single and multi-sectional units for the year.

ManufacturedHousingTrillionDollarIndustry

How can the industry be doing so poorly?  Consider what Harvard’s Eric Belksy said circa 2002, when he projected that manufactured homes would become the dominate force in conventional housing.

EricBelksyManufacturedHousingIndustryManufacuredHomeManufacturedHousingInstituteResearchDataAffordbleHousingMHProNewsDailyBuisnessNews575

Why was Belksy’s forecast wrong about the second quote?  Arguably because of the first quote.  He made his points prior to Buffett entering the manufactured home industry, and prior to Buffett applying “the moat” – including a manipulation of the credit markets – as it applies to manufactured housing.

 

MHI – The Moat Building Tool of BuffettVille

In a softball video interview with Kevin Clayton, posted at this link here, Clayton briefly explains the benefits that come from working with nonprofits and foundations. To understand the Moat, never forget that passing throw-away line.

The Manufactured Housing Institute – stunningly – can’t even create an accurate GDP figure on new manufactured home sales.  We’ve brought it to their attention, along with other factual errors they’ve published over the years.  Some of those corrections have been requested several times.  How can NAHB, NAR, or other industry trade groups create correct data, while MHI produces – at best – hit and miss data?

Why would Clayton and the Berkshire brands tolerate data errors published by their Arlington, VA based trade group?

Answer.  Fact errors can be useful for “the Moat.”

The logic is simple, once understood.  Buffett isn’t looking to have more competitors in manufactured housing.  Incorrect information is just one more “shark in the water” of the moat.

Heavy regulations?  No problem, for Buffett’s moat.  That’s a barrier for entry, or a barrier for staying in the business.

Bad media? No problem, not for widening and deepening Buffett’s moat.  That too is a barrier for entry, or a barrier to remain in the business.

Keep in mind what Kevin Clayton said about Warren Buffett. He preaches the Moat, and being a tough competitor.  Most of the rest is up to the business leader, supported by Berkshire’s billions. In that previouslylinked video, Kevin Claytonsaid that even if he lost money for 5 years on Clayton Homes – but widened the Moat – that would be okay withWarren.”

Clayton has made money, not lost it.  But what makes Kevin’s comments interesting is that they’ve kept some unprofitable locations open for some time, finally closing about 100 of them.  How many previously successful independents were put out of business, because of anti-competition strategies like these?

But the biggest hit – the proverbial smoking gun – is how Berkshire owned 21st Mortgage Corpmanipulated the truth to cut off lending to numerous independents. The Berkshire brands in MHVille continue to use MHI – and their own influence – to misdirect the Duty to Serve manufactured housing mandated by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) of 2008.

Some of what’s described herein might be entirely legal.

But when collusion exists between units of Buffett’s brands – that he himself says are operated as independent businesses – that points to a legitimate antitrust action, based on my lay reading of the law.  Others who are attorneys that have looked at this, and they’ve said they get the logic too.

 

Despite 3rd Party Praise, to Understand How Poorly Manufactured Homes Are Doing, Consider This Comparison

ManufacturedHousingSHipmentsBloombergQuintFactoryBuiltRebuidRecoveryMashteadLATonyKovachMHproNEws-756x768

 

ScholasticCororatonFigure1MobileManufacturedHomeSalesSHipmentsVsExistingingNewHouseSalesManufacturedHousingiinudstryDataMHProNews

Realtor University, Scholastica ‘Gay’ Cororaton, CBE.

 

ManufacturedHomeMHShipments1990-2017MastheadManufacturedHousingMHProNews600

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 than a manufactured home. The cost per square foot for a manufactured home is routinely lower. When one understands the facts and the trends, a more complete picture of how manipulated the manufactured home market is comes into focus. 

 

To Sum Up

Why is manufactured housing struggling during an affordable housing crisis?

Because the goal of “the Moat” is to squeeze businesses – with what looks to be market forces – slowly out of business. Competitors may sell out to Berkshire owned Clayton – for less than it would be worth in a normal market – or they may be forced out of business, period.

We are not the only publisher to mention the Moat, or the monopolistic practices of Buffett’s Berkshire.  But no publication has peeled by the ‘how it is done’ – not just the outcome – as much as MHLivingNews and MHProNews has. The right Google searches will demonstrate that point.

The Moat is the truth hiding in plain sight.

To learn more about the Moat, see the linked related reports, further below. “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.)

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!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

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.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp and their “Strategic Moat,” Plus Manufactured Housing Equities Updates

 

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

Puzzling Case of Millie Francis, Where are Religious Liberty, Fair Housing, Resident, and Manufactured Home Organizational Defenders?

 

Former Manufactured Housing Institute President, Manufactured Home Owners, Urban Institute, and You

Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier

 

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

 

 

 

 

God’s Sense of Humor, Tilting After Windmills, Manufactured Housing – Merchants or Crusaders?

January 27th, 2019 No comments

 

GodsSenseofHumorTiltingAfterWindmillsManufacturedHousingMerchantsOrCrusadersMastheadMHProNews

What’s wrong is that enough people don’t ask what’s right – that’s a faithful paraphrase of the brilliant writer and believer, G.K. Chesterton.

 

One need not look far to discover that the Creator of all has a healthy sense of humor.

 

Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Tim Williams – among their allies, pawns, lackeys, and stooges – could not have counted on their strategic economic Moat encountering the various resistance personalities found working in the manufactured home industry today.

Former Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) President Chris Stinebert made a series of arguably interesting, inaccurate, and mistaken comments in his departing message to their association members and followers. One colorful piece of advice Stinebert gave was not to go tilting after windmills.

There are those who understandably believe that it is safer to be a so-called “Merchant” – someone who a self-described MHVille merchant said will do business with anybody –  than it is to be a Crusader, who could be defined as someone who fights for whatever is right.

But as the manufactured housing industry approaches 43 years since the construction of the first HUD Code for manufactured homes on June 15, 1976, there is an increasingly self-evident reality. It’s this. After decades of many MHVille industry pros being mainly merchants, the pool of merchants has steadily shrunk since the last industry high water mark of 1998.

Buffett says he loves to read. He finds value in history, facts, and figures. It’s a point the Oracle of Omaha and this far lesser known Masthead writer concur on. Wheat and chaff. Accept the truth, from whomever or where ever you find it.

In God’s grand sense of humor, Buffet’s minions picked an avoidable fight with this multiple award-winning history major, who happened to be a philosopher’s son. What rich irony!  That divine joke keeps me rolling, in more ways than one.

Not everyone in MHVille is a short-term thinker who will sell out the Master for 30 pieces of silver.

America is a nation filled with tragedy as well as hopes, with a rich tradition of attainable dreams.

Only those who will use some of their time, talent, and treasure to support the crusaders for justice in MHVille will hope to see the day when MH Nation becomes a reality. MHNation is attainable, but it requires enough sufficiently motivated efforts, hands, wit, and resources to help build and sustain it.

 

 

Big and Small, They Lost It All

Over the years, this writer has peered into the eyes of mom and pop businesses who didn’t understand what happened to their once thriving enterprises or land-lease communities.

This Masthead writer also watched as the once mighty fell too.  Previously dominating ‘old Fleetwood’ or ‘old Champion’ vanished in less than a decade, under the headwinds of the builders of Buffett-style strategic economic Moats. 

If the former giants of MHVille didn’t survive the strategic economic Moats of Chairman Mao, pardon me, Chairman Buffett, then what hubris does it take to believe that the also-rans in Claytonville can survive “the Moat’s” steady, grinding, and seemingly invisible methods?

We respect George Allen’s service to his nation.  Lord only knows what he may have encountered during Desert Storm or in the deadly jungles of Vietnam.

That said, it’s pathetically laughable when someone like George F. (F?) Allen calls himself the industry’s “historian.” Here’s how he said it in a recent post, “This blog posting is sole national advocate, official ombudsman, historian, research reporter, education resource, & online communication media for North American land lese communities!

 

CommunityInvestorJan152019GeogeFAllenMastheadBlogMHProNews

The next time the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis asks for a hit-job, please send someone less self-contradictory, and more competent.  History?  Allen’s view of history puts him in the center of it all. Fascinating choice of who to answer, Kevin. 

 

Listening, musing, and reading pay. It was listening to a former client/supporter of Allen say, ‘With George, it’s AAA. All About Allen.” Priceless insight, spot on, and moving on.

 

 

Jesus and the 10

Jesus never preached socialism. Nor did Jesus preach monopolistic methods.

Properly understood, the 10 Commandments that Moses brought down from Mount Sinai protect private property and human wealth honestly earned.

It’s simple, really. Constantly reference, strive to support, and follow those Ten Commandments. Let those 10 and the lessons of the Good Book be your decision-making guide. When those 10 Commandments are understood and followed, society will thrive. When ignored, mocked, or trampled underfoot, the weak or most innocent become victims.  The Ten, with motivated merchants, make for the sufficient needs of crusaders.  The rest are details and commentary.

 

UnlessThereisAGodAllMoralityIsJustOpinionBeliefsNoKingsNoMonopoliesNoOligarchsAmercanWayMHProNews

The top images are composites from the Prager U video, further below. Over a million views on that thought-provoking video.

 

The Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Ph.D. was a sinner, like this writer, and the rest of us mere mortals. King had strengths and weaknesses.  Ditto. But that thoughtful strategist led a peaceful revolution in his day. King was a Crusader. That eloquent preacher had merchants who supported his crusader efforts.

Crusaders like Jesus, King, or Gandhi are always the ones who change the world.

 

MahatmaGandhiWIkiMastheadManufacturedHousingIndustryCommentaryMHProNews

This is historic. This is part of authentic history. 

 

Together, with arms locked, King and others marched against the oppressors of his time. King was a visible figure, but never forget that there were numbers of less visible ones who made sure that King secured the victory they sought.

Affordable quality housing – which can be served in the form of modern manufactured homes – is a civil, constitutional, and a legal right. But it will take enough Crusaders to beat those who’ve manipulated the American system in a way that moat builders seek to enrich themselves, as they arguably defrauded their neighbors as they smiled.

 

Don’t stop being a merchant.

 

But if you don’t want to be a statistic among other merchants in MHVille who’ve fallen before you, if you don’t want to be another “value acquisition” of Berkshire or a Buffett buddy, then ponder this reality.  You must use some time, talent, and treasure to support new structures to replace the purported corruption of Arlington VA based MHI and their masters in Omaha and Knoxville.

Buffett’s smart, in a Machiavellian way. Chairman Buffett and his are patiently grinding the industry into powder that he can easily swallow at a cheap price.

You, we, and other people of good will can use cunning, truth, and existing laws to beat Buffett at his own game. Who says? Centuries of Bible stories tell me it’s so.

There are various ways people around the globe express the Ten Commandments. Properly understood, at their core, they are the same. It’s noteworthy that Christian, Jews, Muslims and other believers have similar beliefs to these 10 Commands.

 

 

Read the related reports, further below, for added insights.  Reach out by phone, message, or email to tip, talk or join the merchants who are ready to be or support the spirited crusaders that can beat the corrosive effects of manipulating oligarchs and their Moat builders. Communism and the Nazis were defeated. America had its trust-busting era, that broke up the monopolists. Another one lies ahead. “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.)

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!EmailedMHProNewsHeadlineNewsDailyBusinessNews

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.

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

Puzzling Case of Millie Francis, Where are Religious Liberty, Fair Housing, Resident, and Manufactured Home Organizational Defenders?

 

Former Manufactured Housing Institute President, Manufactured Home Owners, Urban Institute, and You

Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier

 

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”