There’s always something to howl about

The “cap and trade” bill is full of outrageous proscriptions on private property rights — so the NAR is campaigning against honest appraisals instead of fighting the growth of the nanny state

If you had your blast email spam from NAR President Charles McMillan, you know what’s important to the Grand Poobahs: Appraisers are all of a sudden just too dang honest, and that’s bad for business. Meanwhile, the so-called “cap and trade” bill that narrowly passed in the House of Representatives last night is full of nightmare provisions impinging on the rights of private property owners to do what they want with their land and structures. Where was the NAR? Elsewhere, of course. Where else?

From JammieWearingFool:

Beyond what it will do to our economy, at the end of the debate House GOP Leader John Boehner took to the floor and started reading from the 300 page amendment that the Democrats drafted and dropped on the legislatures at 3 AM, there was literally hundred of items to impose federal control over your life. Here are some highlights.

Want to replace a window? Not so fast. First you must pay for an appraisal of your house to measure its energy efficiency and receive calculations of both before and after the proposed change. Hey, it may be a great excuse for those guys trying to avoid putting in that big bay style window that the missus has been bugging you about.

Are you having a new house built? Back up, Skippy. This bill includes language that tells you exactly where you can put your electrical outlets.

Did you know that for one sort of appraisal service related to determining energy efficiency there is only one company you can use? Yup, it is right in there along with the name of the company. How is it that this one company managed to land the only contract to service 300 million Americans? Who is this company?

I wish I could answer those questions, but all of those provisions and more, Rep. Boehner went on for almost an hour citing them and still didn’t get through the whole 300 pages, is not available. You see because of when the Democrats dropped this amendment at 3 AM the text of it is not available. So much for that transparency. The total bill runs on for more then 1500 pages and it controls every aspect of your life, from what type of car we will be able to produce and buy to what type of appliances you have in your house.

Under some of these provisions you won’t be able to sell your house. Got your eyes and a quaint little place out the way and off the beaten path? Forget about it. By the time you went through the time and expense to get it up to the new code proposed in this legislation that little place in the woods will resemble something out the Jetsons.

So for those who were at work and getting ready for their weekend, and were simply tired of the wall-to-wall coverage of Michael Jackson, you came just one more step closer to being less free today then you were yesterday. And by the way, Congress has blown town for a two-week vacation. It is hard work turning a Republic into a Socialist state. This must be stopped in the Senate.

My biggest fear now, however, is if the Republicans couldn’t stop this, a bill that will throw hundreds of thousands if not millions out of work as the companies they work for go belly up or leave the country and imposed what amounts to a national homeowners association on all of us, what chance do they have of stopping the nationalized health care?

What else is in this Trojan Horse bill?


16 Comments so far

  1. Mark Brian June 27th, 2009 12:42 pm

    The problems with appraisals are due to the pendulum swinging too far to the other side. It will swing back. But changes were needed, just it may have been over reaction or over correction.

    The NAR is reacting to the horror stories about appraisals we have all heard lately. Not because they have a problem with people being honest! The problem is John & Jane Q Public is being hurt by the new rules. The system needs tweaking to benefit and protect the buyer and seller.

    The problem with the politicians and bills delivered in the middle of the night is nothing new. The politicians have not cared about the average American in many many years.

  2. Dave Phillips June 27th, 2009 6:57 pm

    Originally this bill contained mandatory energy ratings on ALL homes when they went up for sale. That would have really hurt older homes. NAR was successful in killing that, but I’m not sure anyone can stop what is going on in DC.

    “A little rebellion now and then … is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government.”
    –Thomas Jefferson

    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, Letter to William S. Smith, Paris, Nov. 13, 1787

  3. Robert Worthington June 28th, 2009 4:20 pm

    I do agree with your post about the outrageous bill. Cap and Trade is by far just taking more money out the pockets of American workers. I am completely against the cap and trade bill.

  4. Doug Quance June 28th, 2009 4:36 pm

    And all we see on the news is Michael Jackson…

  5. Greg Swann June 28th, 2009 4:40 pm

    Panem et circensis.

  6. Robert Kerr June 28th, 2009 7:06 pm

    RE: “Are you having a new house built? Back up, Skippy. This bill includes language that tells you exactly where you can put your electrical outlets.”


    The problem with The Internet is that every conspiracy theorist, every Flat Earther, every American Nazi and every jammie wearing fool gets the same stage.

    Before you go there, the FEMA concentration camps and secret directions on the back of federal highway signs aren’t real, either.

  7. Thomas Johnson June 28th, 2009 7:35 pm


    Robert: I knew it! That would be the Federal Energy Marshall Authority? One extension cord too many and they put you in the concentration camp. I always wondered what those secret markings on the back of the highway signs were.

  8. Steve Norris June 28th, 2009 11:09 pm

    @Robert – You could attempt to refute what the gentleman claims without the incendiary attacks, but you didn’t do that. Instead, you merely vomited up some name calling. Class act.

    Perhaps “Are you having a new house built? Back up, Skippy. This bill includes language that tells you exactly where you can put your electrical outlets.” is over stated. However, with the advent of a National Building Code with the stated goal of reducing energy usage in residential buildings by 70% over 20 years, you must admit that the federal government will have tremendous power to determine a great many things about the house you may buy down the road:

    From (I would have supplied a link but Thomas frequently refreshes searches and the link might not work. Do a search for H.R.2454.

    SEC. 304.
    (b) National Energy Efficiency Building Codes-
    `(A) IN GENERAL- There shall be established national energy efficiency building codes under this subsection, for residential and commercial buildings, sufficient to meet each of the national building code energy efficiency targets established under subsection (a), not later than the date that is one year after the deadline for establishment of each such target.
    `(A) effective on the date of enactment of the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, 30 percent reduction in energy use relative to a comparable building constructed in compliance with the baseline code;
    `(B) effective January 1, 2014, for residential buildings, and January 1, 2015, for commercial buildings, 50 percent reduction in energy use relative to the baseline code; and
    `(C) effective January 1, 2017, for residential buildings, and January 1, 2018, for commercial buildings, and every 3 years thereafter, respectively, through January 1, 2029, and January 1, 2030, 5 percent additional reduction in energy use relative to the baseline code.

    With the gluttonous overreaching by Washington that has been going on for some time (not started by, but certainly reaching new highs under the current administration) dictating the placement of outlets doesn’t seem too far fetched. After all, elsewhere in the bill they take several pages to describe table and floor lamps and the kinds of bulbs you must use for them.
    This bill is just further evidence that we currently live in a madhouse at which Washington, Jefferson and Adams would be aghast. If you liked what Enron did with energy derivatives, you’ll be absolutely giddy over what the Honorable Representatives in Congress just unleashed.

  9. Greg Dallaire June 29th, 2009 9:04 pm

    This is beyond scary! It’s time that we stand up for the little rights we have left. The best thing I took from this blog is about the little to any coverage about this bill and or talks about it.

    Thats what happens when you have people interested in celebrities and not our freedoms and liberties.

    The politicians that support this kind of non sense need to be held accountable for their actions.

    Glad to hear someone actually talking about this

  10. Greg Swann June 29th, 2009 10:11 pm

    The Washington Post:

    In fact, the bill also contains regulations on everything from light bulb standards to the specs on hot tubs, and it will reshape America’s economy in dozens of ways that many don’t realize.

    Here is just one: The bill would give the federal government power over local building codes. It requires that by 2012 codes must require that new buildings be 30 percent more efficient than they would have been under current regulations. By 2016, that figure rises to 50 percent, with increases scheduled for years after that. With those targets in mind, the bill expects organizations that develop model codes for states and localities to fill in the details, creating a national code. If they don’t, the bill commands the Energy Department to draft a national code itself.

    States, meanwhile, would have to adopt the national code or one that achieves the same efficiency targets.

  11. Dave Moeller June 30th, 2009 8:01 am

    I prefer to trust my LOCAL government to develop building codes. It seems to have working well so far. Why add an additional burden? Having lived in different parts of the country over my life, guess what, somethings that work in Maine may not be needed in Southern California. Whatever happened to States Rights? Could it be that some areas of the Country are having a rough time because their elected officials have made bad choices? MMMMM? Oklahoma learned about banks and government in the ’80s. Nobody came to our aid. If we want to get off foreign oil, why don’t we rely on domestic oil. It can be developed GREEN, and create more jobs than making new light bulbs.

  12. John June 30th, 2009 11:18 am

    The bill would give the federal government power over local building codes

    anybody remember Amendment 10 of the Constitution that reads:

  13. Dave Hanna June 30th, 2009 4:31 pm

    As an NAR Federal Policy Coordinator (I meet with my local congressman on housing issues) I can tell you that in Washington DC, this is seen as a jobs, jobs, jobs. We were told after a sub-committee meeting in May that NAR’s stance (opposing this bill) was ” clearly going against the prevailing winds on the Hill”

    We will not win by going to head to head with these interests, and that is why NAR is working to see if the bill can be modified to take into account all the issues previous posts and the article have raised. The political reality is some version of the bill will pass and be signed by the President.

    Lobbying is about influencing decisions, helping to develop policy and sometimes, mitigating the impact of intrusive legislation. To be effective and have a strong voice, it means NAR also has to chose what battles to fight, and this is not one we will win.

    IMHO, you can push back best on this by going to your local officials and showing them how you see this bill will take away local control and engage them in the discussion while Congress is on recess and there is time to act.

    As for the Appraisers, 30,000 of them belong to NAR, pay dues just like you and I, and the HVCC issues are very real ones in some areas of the country.

  14. Jim Duncan June 30th, 2009 4:47 pm

    @Dave Hanna – Acknowledging that compromise and negotiations are how the dirty game is played …

    Did the NAR support this bill in its current form? Wouldn’t it have been better to have either

    1) Opposed it (preferable in my opinion but likely not realistic)
    2) Stay out of it? As it stands, it is untenable.

  15. Greg Swann June 30th, 2009 5:07 pm

    > The political reality is some version of the bill will pass and be signed by the President.

    What would the NRA do about an anti-gun bill that was going to pass anyway?

    Under all is the land. It either means something or it doesn’t. If the NAR doesn’t stand for private property, it doesn’t stand for anything. If we as Realtors are not the first line of defense of the rights of private property owners, then we’re the Judas Goats leading once-free Americans to their slaughter.

  16. […] Greg’s post last week stirred up some good discussion of what NAR should be doing about the crazy energy bill, […]