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Where do "experts" come from?



February 12, 2008 – Comments (3)

Where does the news media get its "experts?" Too often, from the ranks of shameless self promoters, like this guy -- who has continued to hit me with unsolicited spam me though I've told him in the past "no thanks." I can count on no fingers the number of times I've quoted topical "experts" like him in my work, something that he'd know if he were actually reading these articles, rather than harvesting keywords or whatever he's doing.

The biz is ugly. Enjoy.


Dear Seth,
I read your article "Bush's Bailout Bait-and-Switch" with great interest and found it very in tune regarding the current market.  
As a mortgage specialist in the NYC area, I’ve been quoted recently in “Bloomberg News”  and in  "USAToday" .  To see the actually article please click on the links!
I’m writing now to alert you to a very important story that appears to have gone largely undiscovered. The breaking news in the mortgage industry is that the conforming loan limits are expected to change. Consumers will desperately need to be educated on how this is going to affect them, in order to take advantage of the benefits offered to those who act quickly.
With an 81 to 16 vote, the Senate passed an amended version of H.R. 5140, a $150 billion plan to jumpstart the economy with temporary tax breaks for consumers and businesses, extended benefits, and most important, two provisions designed to assist the housing market. According to CNN, the House is expected to consider and pass the amended bill as early as tonight, which could put the bill on the President’s desk as early as next Friday.
The bill temporarily increases the size of loans that may be purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, raising the current level of $417,000 to reportedly up to $730,000 in the highest cost regions of the housing markets. The bill also increases the size of loans the Federal Housing Administration could insure.
I am very knowledgeable about this topic, having researched and studied it extensively, and am very comfortable talking about it.  I can offer thorough information and analysis in answer to any of the following questions, any of which would be a great starting point for a story:
What are these "Conforming Limits" that we are hearing about in the media?
Why should home SELLERS be informed about the "Conforming Limits"?
Why should home BUYERS be informed about the "Conforming Limits"?
What types of loans have been impacted by "Conforming Limits"?
How will the new “Conforming Limits” impact the real estate market?
How can this increase in “Conforming Limits” boost the economy?
I would be delighted to help you put together a story that will educate your readers during this particularly complex and challenging time. With my help, you can be the first to break this story to the bottom line consumer, in a thoughtful, comprehensive and contributory way. Feel free to contact me by email or phone at any time.  I look forward to hearing from you.
P.S.  If you want to know where I found your artical I found it on
Best regards,
Shane Backer
Branch Manager-Senior Loan Officer
Robbins & Lloyd Mortgage
347 Fifth Avenue Suite 1506
New York, NY 10016
Office: 212.213.5120 X3008
Fax:    212.202.4396
Shane Backer in the news!



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3 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On February 12, 2008 at 7:10 PM, DemonDoug (31.32) wrote:

Seth, I say you interview him.  One of the things that I would LOVE to do is to grill these "experts" and ask them what were they advising in 2005?  And find articles from 2005... I'm sure you could from google.  We all know the realtors were pimping housing all the way through, and now the pitch is "we've bottomed" without any explanation of why we've bottomed.  Of course we haven't bottomed; rather, this guy, like so many "experts" are really no better than a car salesman who is trying to convince you to buy something.

I'm sure you would be great at really grilling this self-promoting attention whore. 

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#2) On February 12, 2008 at 7:52 PM, mickeyc21 (30.09) wrote:

Tom Atkins the long haired realtor  "expert" on Fox is married to the anchor. Disclosure anyone?! Mike Norman (also Fox) labels himself a "contrarian" and desperately tries to uphold the status quo. He was (and is) hyper bullish on the dollar and real estate. I sent him an email asking him if he had ever been right on any call he had made as I have never seen him predict the right side of anything and amazingly got no reply.

Is the link to N'Sync really the one this guy provided. That is hilarious if true. 

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#3) On February 12, 2008 at 8:52 PM, TMFBent (99.27) wrote:

Mike Norman makes me laugh my head off. I'm not happy to admit that he used to contribute to the Fool, including poorly-reasoned junk like this. (This piece isn't bad, however.) I challenged him a few times to back up his opinions (on homebuilders, especially -- which he was touting in September, 2006!!!) in CAPS. I don't think he did.

His web site is hilarious. "Exmaining argyments against widely followed themes..."

Check out the mispellings, the hamfisted writing and bad grammar, the cheesy photos, and the off-topic rants in his blog.


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