Channeling writer and poet Jack Kerouac from his famed book, On the Road, author D. Sidney Potter is on the road in over a dozen cities during a five-year period in which he writes about – in essay form, the real estate bust while working as a mortgage operations consultant for such Fortune 500 companies as Wells Fargo, CitiGroup, Deloitte & Touché and Accenture. His writings are an insider perspective that takes hard punches at the banking industry, while criticizing the American populous in its naiveté in so willingly drinking the poisonous Kool-Aid, known as subprime mortgages. We have conducted and interview with D. Sidney Potter.
What motivated you to write?
I thought maybe I could make a difference.
How did you present your 'insiders' take' about the real estate bust?
I’m not certain I really understand your question? If you’re asking how I came up with some of the topic matters based upon an ‘insiders’ perspective, then I can answer that. What is meant by an “insiders” perspective is that people like me took advantage of the easy financing offered in the early 2000’s and thus had an intimate understanding of the pros and cons of being a market player. That baseline knowledge of the real estate mortgage industry transformed itself into writing about the very laws being passed after the crash, and by extension just a treasure trove of topics to write about.
Why do you think Americans are willing to drink the 'Kool-Aid'?
Case and point. Look at the last US. Presidential election. People are like sheep. When instructed to think in a certain way, even if it is against your own common sense, people inevitably make decisions that are contrary to their best interest – if for no other reason than the innate desire to be apart of a community. At the end of the day, we're all tribal, and when it came to the subprime mortgage crisis, many Americans were inclined to “drink the ‘Kool-Aid’, despite the very real repercussions.
What went wrong in the industries (both the banking and the real-estate)?
It’s called greed. Plain and simple. In biblical terms, if you wanted to blame it on two people, I would say start with Adam and Eve. Adam’s lust for a piece of apple really blew it for everybody.
How therapeutic is it to write your book 'The Essayist’?
It was a five-year journey of jotting down thoughts about the real estate implosion. Much of the writing took place in small coffee shops to dead-end skid-row type motels from Speedway, IN to Jacksonville, FL ---- and back again from Las Vegas, NV to Minneapolis, MN. The therapy part, if that’s what you wanna call it, keep me grounded and diffused a lot of potentially dark thoughts.
What can your readers learn from your book and writings?
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