Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Jackie Speier: Been There, Done That

Congresswoman Jackie Speier, little more than a name to me, reports on a close call with the B-word:
Let me tell you a bit about my experience with bankruptcy or--perhaps it's more accurate to say--my non-experience.

In 1993, a crime was committed against my family.  A man who ultimately went to jail placed a fraudulent mechanics lien on our home--it was up for sale and that caused the sale of the home to fail.  We'd already moved on so now we were saddled with both mortgages.

Carrying these mortgages was tough on us financially, even though my husband did well as an emergency room physician.  So we did something that will always haunt me.  We cut expenses.  We cut expenses, in part, by cancelling Steve's life insurance.  It was only going to be a few months, right?

Then, a few weeks later, the unthinkable happened. A man who knew that he had no brakes on  his car decided that he was going to drive to work.  He ran a red light and killed Steve.

So here I was--no husband, I owned these homes, I was pregnant with our second child and we'd cancelled the life insurance.  In short, bankruptcy definitely loomed.
That's from a speech she gave a while back to the National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, reprinted in their trade sheet, NABTTalk, Vol, 26, Issue 4, Winter, 2010.   You will surmise that it worked out well enough: she sold the house, and the rest is history.  Aside from the episode at hand, I know nothing about her.   But I gather that in Singapore, you can't even take a seat in the legislature unless you have an MBA or a degree in engineering.  Or maybe it's just an urban myth: anyway,  I should think they might want to make an exception for a resume like this one from Jackie Speier. 

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