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Another Owner Simply Walks Away From A Struggling Property

A report from The City on New York. “In 2019, Clarence Hamer bought a house and moved to upstate Harriman, turning the two-family home he had owned in Brownsville since 2007 into an investment property. His plan blew up when the tenant who had moved into the unit he formerly occupied stopped paying rent in the summer of 2019. He isn’t paying his mortgage on the Brooklyn building and says he expects to be foreclosed on when his bank eventually moves to collect what it is owed. ‘I know I am in jeopardy of losing my home,’ said Hamer, 46, ‘a home I was going to be turning over to my kids and it doesn’t seem like I am going to do that.'”

The Real Deal. “Another New York City hotel owner is checking out. Billionaire Leonard Stern’s Hartz Mountain Industries wants to hand the keys over to its lenders on its Soho Grand and Roxy Hotels in Lower Manhattan, according to notes on the hotels’ securitized loan. Hartz Mountain ‘no longer wants to fund the losses’ at the properties, and has requested to transfer the hotels to the special servicer on the $110 million loan via a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure.”

“And Hartz Mountain wouldn’t be the first owner to simply throw its hands up and walk away from a struggling property. Earlier this year, the California-based REIT Sunstone Hotel Investors voluntarily surrendered control of the 478-room Hilton Times Square Hotel to special servicer Torchlight Investors. As of the fall, 80 percent of New York City hotels backed by $4 billion in securitized mortgages were showing signs of distress.”

The Dallas Morning News in Texas. “A steep decline in permits for Dallas-Fort Worth apartment construction will mean a slowdown in building. Permits for multifamily residential building fell more than 43% last year, according to Richardson-based RealPage. The sharpest drop was in the Fort Worth area, where permits for apartment construction dropped 48.5% in 2020 from 2019.”

“‘From 2011 to 2019, nearly half of all residential units permitted were multifamily, compared to about 28% prior to the Great Recession and housing bubble,’ said RealPage market analyst Chuck Ehmann. ‘That ratio was just 24% in December 2020. This cyclical downturn in multifamily permitting will allow the market to adjust from the recent elevated levels that kept D-FW among the national leaders for apartment development in the past few years.'”

“North Texas still tops the country in ongoing apartment development with more than 36,000 units on the way. But the decrease in permits for new projects will reduce construction volumes in the area as properties in the pipeline are completed. D-FW had led the country in apartment permits for several years before 2020′s declines.”

The Oregonian. “The number of new building permits filed in Portland last year plunged by 27%, falling even below the trough of the Great Recession. A slowdown was already underway before the coronavirus pandemic hit, following a boom in new hotel and office construction in downtown Portland and new regulations on apartment builders. Then the coronavirus pandemic hit and protests rocked the downtown core, accelerating the falloff.”

“Portland’s Bureau of Development Services has notified 13 employees they will lose their jobs March 1 because of declining permitting revenue. A cyclical decline in commercial building permits isn’t a great surprise given the number of new offices and hotels that went up across the city over the last several years, according to Wilkerson. It may take a few years for demand to catch up with the construction boom at the end of the last decade, and the outlook is particularly uncertain as employers evaluate how much remote work will continue after the pandemic.”

“As Willamette Week reported last month, Portland plunged from one of the most desirable cities for real estate investors to 66th among 80 cities on an index compiled by the Urban Land Institute. ‘The reputational damage is what’s going to exacerbate or prolong what we saw unfold in 2020, effectively,’ said Michael Wilkerson, senior economist with the Portland consulting firm ECONorthwest.”

The Albuquerque Journal in New Mexico. “Around 42% of all housing units in Taos County are vacant, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, with nearly half of them classified as homes used for seasonal and recreational use. Such a high rate is not uncommon for northern New Mexico, where a lack of jobs and the decimation of such industries as mining have led many people to leave the region; nearby Rio Arriba County has a 37% vacancy rate.”

“But what distinguishes Taos County from other areas is the high number of vacation and second homes, as well as its status as a large attraction for tourists. Only 13% of vacant homes in Taos County are available either to rent or buy, according to the Census Bureau. Paloma Villalobos now manages properties for owners of second homes in the Taos area. She said many owners of such properties refuse to rent out their units when they’re away.”

“‘They don’t want to share or make those properties available for people who live here on an affordable basis,’ she said. ‘They’re sitting empty.'”

“Carlos Valdez said his home in Valdez, New Mexico, is surrounded by multiple vacant homes. This includes his great-grandmother’s home, which has sat empty for 12 years since the family first sold it. He said he sees the home, which underwent an extensive remodeling, sitting empty every day as he drives to work. ‘It’s kind of sad, because a lot of younger people are leaving Taos when they could be here,’ he said. ‘But there are no jobs here.'”

The Davis Vanguard in California. “A release from the university, citing the fall survey, Julia Ann Easley wrote, ‘Apartment vacancies in the city of Davis reached some of their highest rates in more than 40 years as University of California, Davis, students continued with mostly remote studies in the COVID-19 pandemic.’ The blended vacancy rate of 12.2 percent—including apartments leased by the unit and by the bed—compares with 1.0 percent in fall 2019. This is the highest such rate since the method was created starting with 2016 survey.”

“Among the 1,352 units leased by the bed rather than the unit as a whole, 1,283, or 29.8 percent of the 4,300 beds, were vacant. Last year, 3.4 percent of beds in this type of unit were vacant. In the fall of 2020, the first phase of the Green at West Village opened with more than 1000 beds being added. By next fall, the full project will be online with an additional 2300 beds. In addition, Shasta Hall will add 800 new beds this next fall and, by fall of 2023, the expanded Orchard Park redevelopment project will provide up to 200 two-bedroom units for students.”

The Los Angeles Times in California. “This 13,000-square-foot mansion in Beverly Hills has a new owner — one who wasn’t accused of laundering about $250 million from a Malaysian government investment fund and using the stolen cash to produce ‘The Wolf of Wall Street.’ It’s been a dramatic decade for the property perched in Trousdale Estates, which has been destroyed and rebuilt multiple times with questionable taste and dubious funding.”

“In 2007, it was bought by Mohamed Hadid — the celebrity real estate developer known for building a 30,000-square-foot spaceship-like mega-mansion in Bel-Air before a court ordered it to be torn down two years ago. For this one, Hadid erected an Egyptian-themed house complete with a pyramid in the front room and sold it to Jho Low, the Malaysian businessman accused of masterminding a scheme that stole $4.5 billion from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad fund, also known as 1MDB.”

“Low, who fled the country and is considered an international fugitive, later transferred it to his partner in the scandal, Riza Aziz. Aziz acquired the property in hopes of rebuilding the gaudy home into a vacation spot for his stepfather. According to the listing, Aziz poured more than $40 million into transforming the extravagant mansion.”

“Construction was halted, however, when federal authorities accused Aziz of laundering $250 million from 1MDB, money which allegedly funded the movies he produced and the real estate he purchased. He plead not guilty but agreed to return $107 million in assets, including the Beverly Hills home he was preparing for Razak. As part of the deal, he quietly sold the estate for $19 million in 2019 to a limited liability company based in Delaware whose ownership is not clear. The new developer put the finishing touches on the property, fixing the torn-up landscaping and clearing off dirt and construction equipment that riddled the grounds.”

“‘There was a cement mixer left in the driveway,’ according to one real estate source who was not authorized to comment on the sale. Once completed, the mansion surfaced for sale at $30 million last summer and just sold for $27.4 million. It’s the priciest home sale in Beverly Hills so far this year, according to the Multiple Listing Service.”

This Post Has 89 Comments
  1. ‘They’re sitting empty…there are no jobs here’

    This brings up a major point: empty shacks produce nothing. The REIC will say, “every shack makes an angel ring its bell and provides gobs of money every year!” It’s a gotdam lie. Ask Flagstaff.

  2. ‘Aziz poured more than $40 million into transforming the extravagant mansion…As part of the deal, he quietly sold the estate for $19 million in 2019’

    The Times makes it difficult to follow the a$$ poundings, but it look like everybody got at least one. Except the UHS of course.

  3. ‘Among the 1,352 units leased by the bed rather than the unit as a whole, 1,283, or 29.8 percent of the 4,300 beds, were vacant’

    Recession proof! And thousands more empty, useless rooms on the way.

    1. Washington state recently announced Fall 2021 classes will be in-person, not online. My son will be among those “renting a bed.”

  4. ‘no longer wants to fund the losses’

    So a billionaire, who could pay, says pound sand. How’s that non-recourse loan working for ya?

    ‘As of the fall, 80 percent of New York City hotels backed by $4 billion in securitized mortgages were showing signs of distress’

    It’ll be 100% soon if these commies get their way. So where is Larry? He was gonna snap up these hotels and warm the frozen soup on the burning furniture?

    1. It’ll be 100% soon if these commies get their way.

      That reminded me of how the commies chased Amazon’s proposed HQ2 out of New York City. It will be fun to watch the “Escape from New York” resume this spring, especially once the BLMing resumes in full force. I wonder what percentage of last year’s looted and burned businesses are gone for good, I’d reckon that it’s pretty high.

  5. No “pent-up demand” for $500,000 starter homes happening here:

    “A new survey shows a good chunk of younger Coloradans in their twenties are turning to ‘The Bank of Mom & Dad’ to help pay their bills during the pandemic.

    The data, collected by, shows in 1 in 4 young Coloradans between the ages of 20 and 29 are turning to their parents more when it comes to accessing credit and cash during the pandemic.

    According to the data, the categories most younger Coloradans are asking their parents to borrow money for are: rent, car payments, groceries and childcare.”

    1. I know a dude who was laid off from a construction project management job about a year ago. He hasn’t been able to find another jobs and is making ends meet by doing handyman work.

  6. ‘Portland’s Bureau of Development Services has notified 13 employees they will lose their jobs March 1 because of declining permitting revenue’

    It gets worser.

    ‘A cyclical decline in commercial building permits isn’t a great surprise’

    Not to the HBB, which posted a new, hadn’t even started lux apartment going back to the lender years ago. But it may be a SURPRISE! to the Oregonian, who are shameless REIC dogs. You got the boom, enjoy the bust.

      1. “Portland plunged from one of the most desirable cities for real estate investors to 66th among 80 cities on an index compiled by the Urban Land Institute.”

        Nobody does.

      2. that Antifa infested cesspool?
        I gotta believe that Seattle is/will be dealing with the same fate as a result of their action, or rather lack of action on the “Summer of Love” protests.

  7. See, your tenants are probably part of the BLM and CancelRent socialists morons. They think paying rent is racist and you are keeping them down.

    1. Oh but he’s Black with a capital B! And he was gonna leave it to his kids. Tell that to the lender when they tell you to GTFO.

      1. Hamer paid $450,000 for his Brooklyn home. His mortgage and expenses like property taxes and water bills push his monthly costs past $5,000.

        Something doesn’t add up here. His mortgage should be about $2000 a month. He’s paying $3000 a month on taxes and water?

        Or has he “liberated equity” over the years to buy those fine things in life that he no doubt deserves?

        1. Taxes in NYS are insane.

          I have a friend in Westchester County, right north of NYC.

          A nice middle class 4 bed/1.5 bath on a quarter acre in a good school district.

          Taxes are $20,000+ per year.

          1. For decades before peak Housing Bubble, property prices were commensurately lower to account for the high percent tax rate. Now we’re crazy AND stupid.

          2. “I have a friend in Westchester County, right north of NYC”

            It’s not Sandy from Westchester I mean AOC is it?

            Stephen Robinson
            January 03, 2019 10:29 AM

            This past weekend Ocasio-Cortez tweeted out a photo of her congressional office on Capitol Hill. She made the mistake of adding that she’s just your average girl from the Bronx.

            But Gateway Pundit had incontrovertible proof: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, in high school, went by the name Sandy.

            While they’re at it, maybe they’ll reveal she’s not that young either. She turns 30 this year and that’s the average age of the hot mother of teenagers on a CW drama.

            The Gateway Pundit boasted an “exclusive” from a high school classmate of Ocasio-Cortez’s. The anonymous source shared photos of the future congressperson during her time at Yorktown High School in Westchester County. “Deep Throat” also described the glamorous life of the residents.

            The education we received at Yorktown was excellent, we had many well funded after school programs, very good cafeteria food, access to Putnam northern Westcheser BOCES for trade school. Lacrosse was our biggest sport. We were terrible at football, decent at soccer.

            The average home in Yorktown goes for $477,000 — it’s a very nice area.

            There was very large theater, dance and band department. You were considered poor if your parents made $50,000 a year each.


            (Sorry, my caps lock key got stuck.)


          3. Yorktown
            We lived in Yorktown Heights (’93-’06) before here (Las Vegas). I didn’t like it. Most of our original neighbors gradually left and were replaced by inexplicably snobby ones. When I found out that our buyers were opening a child care center in our walkout basement complete with a giant sign on the lawn and the traffic that goes with it, I laughed my head off. Right before we left, the people next door sold to a family of motorcycle enthusiasts who regularly revved their bikes in the middle of the cul-de-sac.
            I heard a RE agent describe Yorktown as populated with social climbers who wanted to live in Scarsdale but couldn’t afford it.

          1. It didn’t cross my mind that white boy Brady beat mocha Mahomes.

            That has to be rayciss. Never mind that it was Tampa’s defense and not Brady that shut down Kansas City.

          2. The Buccaneers defence stifled Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs offence in the Super Bowl. Thanks to solid pressure from their front four and great coverage, Mahomes had nowhere to go. Instead of throwing touchdowns, Mahomes spent the game running for his life!

          3. “Defense wins championships.” Always true, almost always ignored. B-cuz it’s the flashy QB that gets the eyeballs and advert munnies.

  8. “…California-based REIT Sunstone Hotel Investors voluntarily surrendered control of the 478-room Hilton Times Square Hotel to special servicer…”

    But yet on LA’s largest 50,000 watt AM radio station, REIC investments are regularly advertised as some sort of pathway to a pot of gold.

    Joe ‘investor’ stills lives in delusion world.

  9. Share?

    Rent to deadbeats with never ending eviction moratoriums?

    Right out of Doctor Zhivago…

    “‘They don’t want to share or make those properties available for people who live here on an affordable basis,’ she said. ‘They’re sitting empty.’”

    1. “Right out of Doctor Zhivago…”

      I wonder if they have wolves living around the vicinity of the vacant properties?

  10. “‘They don’t want to share or make those properties available for people who live here on an affordable basis,’ she said. ‘They’re sitting empty.’”

    So long as the owners believe that prices are going to go up like crazy continuously, it makes perfect sense to keep shadow on inventory off the market.

    1. If the property’s value is determined by what it could rent for then it makes sense to keep the asking rent high.

      There is a lot of illusion and delusion at play here just as there is in other aspects of modern living.

    2. I wonder if those are actually used as second homes. If so, I wouldn’t rent them out either. I know that the renters on HBB don’t fit the stereotype, but renters have a bad rap for a reason. The renters in Hamer’s house in NY have been squatting for a year and a half now. Soon to be followed by renters who will never pay back rent and likely cancel future rent. The gov better brush off their blueprints for project housing again, because nobody will rent their private property to anyone if this goes on. I guess the only silver lining to all this is that maybe the smug “passive income” crowd will finally shut up.

    1. That was good 🙂

      “One reason to laugh on a Monday”

      This might be another, watched an old Eddie Murphy show last night.

      He cleaned up one joke for the teenagers in the audience. (I will clean it up a little more)

      A bear and a rabbit are going to the bathroom in the forest.

      The bear asks the rabbit…

      Do you ever get (dirt) on your fur?

      The rabbit responds…


      The bear picks up the rabbit and wipes his butt.

  11. As of the fall, 80 percent of New York City hotels backed by $4 billion in securitized mortgages were showing signs of distress.”

    Have fun figuring out the collateral value on those securitized loans, Mr. Banker. And I wouldn’t plan on using them to secure interbank lending, either.

    1. Have fun figuring out the collateral value on those securitized loans, Mr. Banker.

      I’m sure he’s counting on a Biden Bailout.

    1. Now trading above $42,000 at an all time high.

      Apparently, Tesla is buying $1.5B worth of bitcoin.

      1. I heard a theory that Musk bought Btc to distract people away from buying silver, in order to suppress the price of silver so he can buy it up at a lower price. Yes, Elon is going to need physical silver for all his electronica toyz. But the price of silver would have to drop an awful lot to make up for a $1.5 billion head fake. No, I think Elon drank Michael Saylor’s kool-aid.

        I’ve been watching financial Youtubes, and anytime somebody talks about Bitcoin, that’s seems to be the only reason people are buying Btc: because Saylor and Musk did. I don’t think BtC will go to 0, but it feels too ponzi.

        (I’m not good with programming, but ISTM that it wouldn’t be impossible to counterfeit BTC into the ledger. I bet the Chinese are working on it right now.)

      2. Well, they couldn’t make money selling cars but they can make more money selling carbon credits and BITCOINs to the greater fools.

          1. When the Green New Steal is passed, the $1,000 we would have charged to install a Tesla charger will now be $3,000. It’s gonna just like when I was doing electrical work at the airport, every eight hours of actual work will require four hours of paperwork.

            And in case you forgot, I was a contractor at NREL in 2010-2012 and briefly again in 2015-2016 before I left the plantation. We all know how well that free gibs giveaway worked out…

  12. White House Confirms Illegal Aliens Who are Convicted of DUI, Rape and Drug-Related Crimes Will NOT be Deported (2/8/2021):

    “Generally, these convictions would not include drug based crimes (less serious offenses), simple assault, DUI, money laundering, property crimes, fraud, tax crimes, solicitation, or charges without convictions,” acting director Tae Johnson told senior officials in a Thursday email advising them on how to operate while new guidelines are finalized.

    The Biden administration is attempting to reorient ICE, a law enforcement agency that has seen its priorities swing wildly from one administration to the next. But frustrated ICE officials say the proposed changes will take away agents’ discretion and severely constrain their ability to arrest and deport criminals.

    This is the “fundamental transformation” that you were promised.

  13. Glenn Greenwald — Reporters become scolds and censors (2/8/2021):

    “A new and rapidly growing journalistic “beat” has arisen over the last several years that can best be described as an unholy mix of junior high hall-monitor tattling and Stasi-like citizen surveillance.

    It is half adolescent and half malevolent. Its primary objectives are control, censorship, and the destruction of reputations for fun and power. Though its epicenter is the largest corporate media outlets, it is the very antithesis of journalism.

    Note also that Greenwald left The Intercept, which he co-founded, over censorship. President Donald Trump was, in fact, correct, when he said that “the media are the enemy of the American people.”

  14. Hey Jonesy…. I see Jeff Flakejob is back to running off at the mouth again.

    He and Sin-D did a bang up job in the last election.

  15. Most new listings I am seeing were bought 5 or 15 years ago. The 5 year ones people are looking to make a profit. The 15 year ones people are trying to unload at a loss.

  16. New Video Points Out How Votes Were Split By Algos In 2020 Election

    Feb 8, 2021

    Evidence of Widespread Election Fraud

    New video from the Pure Data channel on Youtube points out statistical anomalies based on published election data from the 2020 election. The data includes vote distribution ratios from many states that are identical over time including a one vote from California that is weighted 66% to Biden 32% to Trump and 2% to another candidate.


    Q: What is happening with oceanwide plaza la? A: OceanWide Plaza megaproject is still languishing in limbo amid virus hysteria, China money issues, urban decay, commercial real estate catastrophe and legal disputes. The developer faces an uncertain future with the $1 billion-plus condominium, hotel and retail development. Some of the primary investors, who invested money for the purpose of obtaining U.S. travel visas, ended up getting stiffed by the failed project, according to a current lawsuit.

    Safety deposit box in the sky –> CHECKED

      1. I’m starting to suspect that a coordinated but quiet reduction in the PCR test number of cycles (amplifications) has been underway since early January. Guidance by Dr. Fauci and the WHO telegraphed that this would happen. So far, I can only find one article in the Kansas Sentinel supporting this idea and they say the government peeps won’t talk about it.

        Of course, it’s unpossible.

      1. Yay:

        “I do think we are in a bubble like we were in 2000,” veteran hedge fund manager Mark Yusko told CNN Business. “That doesn’t mean that tomorrow the market is going to crash.”


        And we look at the leverage numbers, the level of margin debt relative to the entire market. And quite frankly, it’s nowhere near what we saw, say, in the 2000 dot-com bubble. So I’d say for the broad market. Now there are examples within the market, and Bitcoin is certainly one of them. GameStop, well, that depends on the day you’re looking at it. Where I do think, let’s say Bitcoin anyway, where that is an example of a bubble. This is the second time we’ve gone through this with Bitcoin.

        And it’s very hard to explain why I call it a bubble. But just take a look at the chart. And if you take a look at the chart, you’ll get a pretty good idea what a bubble looks like. And you need to be very careful when you do that.

        — Hugh Johnson

        Footnote: Seems like Hugh Johnson was already out there making Wall Street commentary back when I was a 20-something who watched those kind of shows. That’s been a while.
        Way to stay in the game, Hugh!

        1. Maybe Hugh should read a few current news articles before offering his assurances on margin debt being contained.

          It ain’t…

          1. The Financial Times
            Beware the madness of markets
            From tulips to GameStop, retail investors usually end up losers in speculative booms
            © FT montage
            Michael Mackenzie
            February 4 2021

            The siren call of minting fabulous riches from the tap of a share trading app recalls past speculative manias down the ages that all ended badly; misallocating capital, wiping out savings and scarring investors.

            The sight of retail money pouring into equities when valuations have already risen substantially is historically a warning sign that a market top beckons.

            That should be noted by any reader thinking about opening a new trading account. They don’t need to look far to see how the use of margin debt, sitting at a record level versus US gross domestic product, shows many investors are discarding a long term approach guided by fundamental asset values. Fear of missing out is a powerful force.

            “There is nothing as disturbing to one’s wellbeing and judgment as to see a friend get rich,” wrote Charles Kindleberger, the author of Manias, Panics, and Crashes: A History of Financial Crises in 1978.

        2. The problem with this “look at the chart” approach to bubble typing is that some bubbles, such as the one currently reinflating is housing, develop slowly over many years. If you compress the time scale (i.e. the horizontal axis on the graph) to include a few decades, the housing bubble, including its current wild surge, will stick out the same way Gamestop’s stock price bubble does over the span of a few months.

  18. One bubble sign that is seldom discussed: the bears are either all in hibernation or perhaps even extinct. It’s a New Era where the stock market always go up!

    1. New Highs Coming
      By Jeff Remsburg, Contributing Editor
      Feb 7, 2021, 6:12 pm EST

      What a difference a week makes.

      Last Sunday, the market appeared fragile. The S&P had fallen nearly 3.5% over the prior five trading sessions. It seemed cracks were forming.

      All of that changed this past week.

      The questions that flash through every trader’s mind when the S&P 500 has a bearish week go something like this:

      “What if this is it?”

      “What if this is the end of the bullish rally?”

      “What if the bears are waking up and taking control?”

      Those questions flashed through the minds of many traders at the end of last week when the S&P 500 fell for the fourth time in a week and dipped below 3,700 for the first time since early January (see Fig. 1 below).

      Fig. 1 — Daily Chart of the S&P 500 Index — Source: TradingView

      However, we think those worries are premature. Sure, there was some profit taking last week, but the index is already starting to rebound.

      Just as Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow yesterday and predicted six more weeks of winter, we are expecting the bears on Wall Street to keep on hibernating.

  19. Home
    Wealth Advisor
    Isaac Newton was a genius, but even he lost millions in the stock market
    Elena Holodny
    Nov 10, 2017, 10:37 AM

    Isaac Newton was one of the smartest people to ever live.

    But there’s a big difference between being a smart physicist and smart investor.

    And, unfortunately for him, Newton learned that the hard way.

    In an updated and annotated text of Benjamin Graham’s classic “The Intelligent Investor,” WSJ’s Jason Zweig included a small anecdote about Newton’s adventures with investing the South Sea Company:

    “Back in the spring of 1720, Sir Isaac Newton owned shares in the South Sea Company, the hottest stock in England. Sensing that the market was getting out of hand, the great physicist muttered that he ‘could calculate the motions of the heavenly bodies, but not the madness of the people.’ Newton dumped his South Sea shares, pocketing a 100% profit totaling £7,000. But just months later, swept up in the wild enthusiasm of the market, Newton jumped back in at a much higher price — and lost £20,000 (or more than $3 million in [2002-2003’s] money. For the rest of his life, he forbade anyone to speak the words ‘South Sea’ in his presence.”

  20. Nice chunks of that “stimulus” much like Obama’s “Porkulus” are checks that will be going out to writers of scripts that will be memorized by the crisis actors for the False Flags that real journalists will bring to your home soon.

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