It would seem that the financial crisis is hitting more than just the little people these days. In the last year or so there’s been a marked increase in house repossessions of the rich and famous. Across the pond – where most of the better known celebrities dwell – a repossessed home is known as a foreclosure.
The deal is about the same – you borrow money to buy a property, you don’t keep up with the mortgage repayments, in swoops the bank and … it’s all over. You’re foreclosed, repossessed, sans house and absolutely sans your hard earned rep.
If you’re a celebrity of course. For the likes of you and me, no one really cares about where our millions have gone or what we’ve done with them because – well … we didn’t have millions in the first place. And even if we did – we wouldn’t have blown it on fast living, thrill seeking nonsense and homes so large you could house enough people and animals to fill Noah’s Ark … twice over.
No – we’d have been a bit more sensible. We’d have bought a nice, fashionable four bedder, in a leafy suburb. We would (we’ve got millions right?) have had it filled with all the latest mod cons, installed under floor heating (the UK weather is unpredictable so … justified) and probably stretched to a few little unnecessary luxuries in keeping with our bank accounts.
Maybe a hot tub for six, a solidly stocked wine rack and (whoop whoop) one part-time house maid. Not a full-timer mind – that’s a step too far for an Englishman but you know … wandering down to the local and dropping ‘ohhhh I don’t worry about cleaning the three bathrooms – that’s what we employ Mavis for. You know … our house maid?’ into conversation over a pint of good red wine is absolutely the right way to crow about our good (though imagined) fortune.
That kind of thing. We’d have stayed away from anything ostentatious (bright red Ferrari’s and crystal chandeliers) or anything too – obvious (£50 notes and a hair weave) simply because we’re sensible, we’re British – and we’re not bloody stupid.
Take for example Nicolas Cage. Heard of him? He of Con Air, The Weather Man and Leaving Las Vegas. In the spring of 2010 one of his 15 homes was foreclosed. Repossessed. Taken away from him by the Men In Banks. Why? Well that’s the easy bit – he wasn’t keeping up with the mortgage repayments.
Now – I don’t know about you but I always figured that these guys were raking it in. Making enough moolah to buy outright. I based this opinion on how much I get charged everytime I go down to the Odeon. For the price of a good bottle of wine and a loaf of bread you get to watch Nic Cage in his latest blockbuster.
But – then again – perhaps Orange Wednesdays are having a bigger impact than they were supposed to? The wrong kind.
The story goes that Cage hit the financial wall. So he sued his financial advisor. Then his ex sued him (clever move that – the man’s up to his nuts in debt and that’s when she goes for maintenance – meh) and just for laughs (not really – they just wanted their money back) the bank sued for the repossession of his house.
Here’s the irony moment – the guys appointed to take the house to resale weren’t overly impressed with what it was they had to sell. Apparently Cage had turned the interior of his Bel Air Tudor mansion into a ‘frat house bordello’. That’s American for ‘done out like something on Shameless’. Having seen the pictures – I have spent some time wondering just who who was responsible for the interior decor.
The house looked like a group of bachelors, desperate for some action – had run amok with a B and Q card, Frank Gallagher and an invitation to spend whatever they wanted down at Camden flea market. Really – it’s frightening what money can buy you. And just as frightening what it can’t.
I’m assuming that Mr Cage now is languishing somewhere minus his Bel Air home. And his New Orleans one. And the one he had in Las Vegas. It seems the words (not the) National Treasure and Leaving Las Vegas (because he had to) have come home to roost. According to his former financial advisor unfortunately Cage is not known for his … financial restraint.
Over the years preceding his fall from financial grace, he blew money on crap goodies such as:
- a Gulfstream jet
- a castle in Bath (not a castle in a bath – a castle in the city of Bath)
- four yachts (and we’re talking you know – big boats here, not rubber dinghys)
- nine Rolls Royces
- jewelry and art work totalling millions of dollars
- unbelievably good parties
See – no modesty in this shopping list. Not a hot tub or house-maid in sight. Mr Cage goes large. He goes … nuclear. Awesome.
So you see there’s a moral to this story. And I’m not talking about overspending (too obvious), being silly (lol) or even … I told you so! No – I’m talking about assertiveness. Samuel Levin’s – and those that have managed to mess up the world’s economy. If you’ve got something to say – say it like you mean it. Don’t hide behind spin or psycho babble or BullS**ters Anonymous.
Tell us the truth. We can handle the truth. We have a right to know exactly where all this spending has gotten us. We need a little direction. We want to know what it is we’re heading for – because most of us really don’t have a couple of million stashed in an off shore holding facility bank account – just in case you guys decide to crap on us just … a little bit more. We have the right to plan ahead – sensibly, knowledgeably … effectively.
Just how far are the guys sat behind the desks at Whitehall and the Big Banking Institutions going to push us in order to redress their mistakes – their overspending – their big bloody global cock-up? I wish I had the answer. But I’m not the men In Banks, I’m not on the Whitehall payroll.
If I was – I wouldn’t be blasting the clowns running the banking systems and the like of Nicolas Cage for being so damn silly. I’d be telling you guys what it is you want/need to know … what the hell really happened behind closed doors that caused the likes of us to have our homes repossessed and our financial credibility left in ruins?