Patterico's Pontifications

3/20/2006

No Wonder Dennis Prager Likes These Guys

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:46 pm

Interesting story in the L.A. Times on Park Place Funding. Apparently the value isn’t just in the relationship. (I didn’t say nothing out of pocket!)

Real estate has been a swell deal for just about everyone who owned a home in California during the last few years.

For hundreds of Orange County homeowners, it’s been even better. Thanks to their mortgage broker, they essentially get paid to borrow money.

Mark Gallagher, the founder and president of Park Place Funding in Laguna Hills, uses a technique that unscrupulous brokers employ to bilk clients.

Gallagher’s innovation was to cut his customers in on the action, giving them a share of the premium he earns for placing loans with high interest rates.

The homeowners receive cash on a regular basis they can use for vacations, remodeling or to pay off that expensive house faster. Not surprisingly, they love their broker.

Smart idea.

But why is the technique described “a technique that unscrupulous brokers employ to bilk clients”? Why isn’t it just clever exploitation of a loophole?

Mortgage lenders were once fond of Gallagher too, helping him become one of the biggest independent brokers in the state.

Recently, however, the relationship soured. No one disputes that Park Place’s system is completely legal, but it has suddenly become controversial as well.

Is Gallagher the consumer’s champion, as he bills himself? Or do his mortgages, which are refinanced almost as soon as the ink is dry, make implicit promises to lenders and investors they don’t keep?

When rich investors and lenders start whining that they have not been given the benefit of “implicit promises,” that’s when I start clutching my sides and laughing heartily. That’s why you hire lawyers, rich guys. Get it in writing. Isn’t that what you always tell us little guys?

LAT Wakes Up to Cyclone Larry

Filed under: International — Patterico @ 7:39 pm

The L.A. Times has finally published something on Cyclone Larry. Apparently, even when it’s perfectly obvious something major is going to happen, it’s not news unless it’s already happened . . .

Volokh on Nonsencial L.A. Times Op-Ed on Claude Allen and Race

Filed under: Dog Trainer,Race — Patterico @ 7:36 pm

I’m losing my touch, folks — but it’s due to weariness. I saw Erin Aubry Kaplan’s nonsensical op-ed arguing that Claude Allen may have committed his penny-ante crimes because of the pressure he felt, you know, from being a sellout Uncle Tom house Negro rationalizer of racism — i.e. a black conservative.

Yes, I read the piece — and didn’t post on it. I just sighed, rolled my eyes, and moved on.

Luckily, Eugene Volokh has some choice things to say about it.

Watch the South Park Scientology Episode

Filed under: Humor — Patterico @ 6:00 am

So, you missed the rerun of the South Park episode about Scientology, because Tom Cruise threw a hissy fit and said he wouldn’t promote his latest movie if they showed it? Never fear. You can watch it here. (Via Lindgren at Volokh.)

UPDATE: Via Xrlq in the comments comes this link questioning whether Issac Hayes actually quit the show.


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