The “Slap in the Face” Award: The Best of SITFA 2014

Steve McDonald
by Steve McDonald

Editorial Note: In the spirit of the holidays, we compiled the best Slap in the Face Awards for 2014. We chose segments that evoked the most comments from readers and the ones that made us shake our heads in disbelief.


The “Slap in the Face” Award: Swedish Parenting - March 16, 2014

And now, one of the more frustrating slaps in the face - Swedish style.

It goes this week to the parents of young children in the Scandinavian country who, according to a new book, are so liberal with their children that the kids are becoming the decision-makers in the home.

The new book by David Eberhard, a Swedish psychiatrist, calls parents “sissies” and claims they have lost control.

The situation in Sweden has become so insane that if a teacher confiscates cellphones from children, who are playing on the phones instead of paying attention in class, the teacher will answer to the parents for violating their children’s rights. That’s incredible! The same applies to sending a child out of class for talking.

Kids are deciding what to eat for dinner, what TV shows to watch, when to go to bed and how the classroom is run? This is nuts!

The Who, Me Worry? “Slap in the Face” Award - September 7, 2014

A recent MarketWatch article claims - this is ridiculous - Social Security has plenty of money and there is no need to worry about it.

Really? I guess MarketWatch and I have different standards for worrying.

According to the article, by 2020 the cost of the program will exceed income, which will shrink the trust fund. That’s the reserves the program has set up.

By 2033 the trust will be exhausted and the fund will be able to pay only about 77% of its obligations from the income it receives from workers.

And these numbers were in the same article that said there is nothing to worry about?

Hello? Are you kidding me? This is nothing to worry about?

The generation right behind the boomers, the folks born between 1980 and 2000, outnumber the boomers by a large margin. There’s more people. This group will be hitting the Social Security rolls a few years after it can’t pay all its obligations.

And this is OK?

The author of this article has to work for the White House or Congress. Only in those two places could this situation be considered something we don’t have to worry about.

It’s unbelievable!

The “Slap in the Face” Award: Betting the House - November 2, 2014

Washington is easing mortgage requirements and wants no down payment for houses again.

This kind of stupidity didn’t do enough damage in 2007 through early 2009.

Yup, you heard me right. Our devoted public servants in D.C. have decided the housing market isn’t moving fast enough for them, so they are lowering lending requirements, and some mortgages will not require a down payment - again.

What could possibly go wrong with a plan like this one? Yes, I am being facetious.

People would buy a house they couldn’t afford and have none of their own money in it so they just walk away when things go south?

Gee, ya think?

Or the big banks, would they bend a few rules to generate more revenues by giving mortgages to unqualified applicants?

Or how about the flippers who buy with no money down, run up huge amounts of debt and then walk away from properties again when the market goes against them. Which it will!

Am I living in another dimension or something? What in the name of God are they thinking about in Washington?

This economy is not moving fast enough, so they decide to make the same mistakes they made in the 1990s and 2000s: give away houses to people who have none of their money invested in the deal.

This is beyond stupid, and if we allow this to happen again we all deserve what we get. In 2008 we could plead ignorance because few of us really understood what the government had done with mortgages in the name of the American dream - at least D.C.’s version of it.

But today we do know! And when it blows up again, and it will - real estate has had three major blowups since the ‘70s - but this time we don’t have any tools left to right the ship.

Think about it!

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