‘Hit the Ball and Drag Jack’ What Classic Golfer Jest Teaches Career and Growth-Minded Manufactured Home Professionals About Manufactured Housing Institute; plus Sunday Weekly Headlines Recap


“Let’s embark on a whimsical journey into the world of manufactured housing, where the green fairways of industry intrigue meet the sand traps of bureaucracy.” That is part of a longer quote from #4 further below. But before we start that “journey,” consider the observations of a fellow who later became a university professor named Curtis Hancock. Previously an athlete at the University of Oklahoma where he studied, Hancock was a runner at O.U. Per a source deemed reliable, Hancock once mused that golf is a bad interruption of a good walk. Be that a serious notion or an otherwise lighthearted poke at a sport enjoyed by millions, that tees up a different pair of jests about golfing that may shed light on the woes involving the manufactured housing industry in the 21st century, including this present era. The golf references will be followed by our weekly headlines in review.

First, per left-leaning AI powered Copilot using its blue or balanced setting are the first of two versions of “Hit the Ball and Drag Jack.”

Part I


There is a golfer’s joke called “hit the ball and drag Jack.” Can you provide that message and its meaning?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsCertainly! The golfer’s joke “hit the ball and drag Jack” is a play on words that combines golf terminology with a humorous twist. Here it is:

“Hit the ball and drag Jack.”


  • In golf, “hit the ball” refers to taking a swing at the golf ball.
  • “Drag Jack” sounds like a person’s name but also implies that Jack (the golfer) is not very skilled or efficient.
  • The joke suggests that Jack’s golf swing is so poor that after hitting the ball, he has to physically drag himself forward to catch up with it.

In essence, it’s a lighthearted way of poking fun at someone’s golfing abilities. 😄🏌️‍♂️…”



I’m thinking of a different version of the jest. It is about a golfer named Jack who dies on the course, and his companion keeps on playing, he hits the ball, and then he drags Jack to the next hole until the 18 holes are completed. Can you share that version and its meaning?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsCertainly! The version you’re referring to is a darkly humorous golf joke. Here it is:

“Hit the ball and drag Jack.”


  • In this context, the joke takes a morbid twist.
  • The golfer named Jack has died during the round of golf.
  • His companion, rather than stopping the game, continues to play.
  • After each shot, the companion drags Jack’s lifeless body to the next hole.
  • The punchline is both absurd and macabre, emphasizing the absurdity of continuing to play golf while dragging a deceased friend along.

In essence, it’s a play on the original golf saying, but with a dark twist that highlights the absurdity of the situation. 😅⛳️🏌️‍♂️1

Learn more
The “dark twist that highlights the absurdity of the situation” from that fictional jest arguably ought to be applied to manufactured housing on several levels.
Manufactured housing was once multiple times the size of the industry in recent years. That statement could be disputed, but the facts could quickly silence any dissent. The version of the Q&A below is edited to correct for a missed year in Copilot’s original response.



> MHProNews and MHLivingNews have each produced a listing of the manufactured housing production by year, from 1995 to 2023. Can you recreate a table that shows those totals by year and link those reports?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsCertainly! Let’s take a closer look at the manufactured housing production data from 1995 to 2023. I’ll provide a summary of the annual production figures, along with links to the relevant reports.

  1. Total National HUD Code Manufactured Home Production by Year (1995-2022):
    • These figures are based on information gathered on behalf of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which is the primary federal regulator for HUD Code manufactured homes:



1995 344,930
1996 363,345
1997 353,686
1998 373,143
1999 348,075
2000 250,366
2001 193,120
2002 165,489
2003 130,815
2004 130,748
2005 146,881
2006 117,373
2007 95,752
2008 81,457
2009 49,683
2010 50,056
2011 51,618
2012 54,881
2013 60,228
2014 64,334
2015 70,544
2016 81,136
2017 92,902
2018 96,555
2019 94,615
2020 94,390
2021 105,772
2022 112,882
2023 89,169

2) Monthly Reports and Recent Data:

3) Additional Insights:

      • The manufactured housing industry faces challenges despite being historically more affordable. Advocates continue to push for legislative changes to promote affordability.
      • The appeal of manufactured homes includes affordability, homeownership, independence, safety, security, and access to newer features.
      • The industry contributes significantly to the economy, with an estimated $31 billion economic contribution.
      • The average cost of a new manufactured home without land was $127,250 in 2022.
      • Approximately 31% of new manufactured homes are placed in manufactured home/land-lease communities2.

4) Graphical Representation:

        • The graph below illustrates the year-by-year total production of HUD Code manufactured homes in the U.S. from 1995 to 2023: !Manufactured Housing Production (Source: Federal Reserve Economic Data)3

In summary, manufactured housing production has fluctuated over the years, and recent data indicates a decline. Advocates continue to work toward solutions to address affordability and promote attainable homeownership. For more detailed information, you can refer to the linked reports and sources. 🏡📊12

Learn more
4) Here is how those charted years of manufactured home production look when graphed. That factually illustrates just how far manufactured housing has shrunk despite the ongoing affordable housing crisis.
5) In another Q&A with Copilot was the following exchange from 6.1.2024.

> I took your advice earlier and asked MHI leaders, Molly Boyle their designated communications contractor, David Goch, their outside attorney, and others including David Roden to respond to an inquiry. At this time, there is no known response. That said, I’d like you to put your creative hat on and create a humorous story that illustrates the concerns raised by Roden, Neal Haney, Frank Rolfe, Marty Lavin, MHARR, Samuel Strommen, George Allen, and others about the Manufactured Housing Institute. Turn it into a story along the lines of “Hit the Ball and Drag Jack.”


BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsCertainly! Let’s embark on a whimsical journey into the world of manufactured housing, where the green fairways of industry intrigue meet the sand traps of bureaucracy. Our tale begins with a golfer named Jack, who, like many others, found himself navigating the treacherous course of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).


“Hit the Ball and Drag Jack: The MHI Chronicles”

Once upon a time, in the rolling hills of the manufactured housing industry, there existed an exclusive golf club known as “The MHI Greens.” It was a place where industry leaders gathered to discuss policy, regulations, and the ever-elusive hole-in-one solution for affordable housing.

Jack, a seasoned golfer and community operator, had heard rumors about The MHI Greens. He knew that if you wanted to play this course, you needed more than just a set of clubs—you needed connections, secret handshakes, and a willingness to overlook the occasional water hazard.

One sunny morning, Jack received an invitation to tee off at The MHI Greens. The letter arrived in a gold-embossed envelope, sealed with the MHI logo—a tiny house with wheels, forever chasing the American Dream. Jack’s heart raced. This was his chance to make a difference, to advocate for affordable housing, and maybe even score an eagle on the 18th hole.

As Jack stepped onto the first tee, he noticed the other players. There was Neal Haney, the grizzled veteran who’d seen more housing cycles than anyone else. Frank Rolfe, the eccentric investor, wore plaid pants and carried a putter shaped like a tiny home. Marty Lavin, the retired banker, adjusted his visor and muttered something about interest rates.

The fairway stretched out before them, lush and green, just like the promises made by MHI. But as Jack swung his driver, he realized the ball had vanished. Instead, it transformed into a stack of regulations, zoning codes, and financing hurdles. The caddy, a mysterious figure named Samuel Strommen, whispered, “Welcome to the MHI course, where every shot counts—especially the ones you don’t take.”

Jack’s second shot landed in the rough—a tangled mess of lobbying efforts and industry infighting. He glanced at George Allen, the course marshal, who patrolled the fairways with a clipboard and a scowl. “Keep it moving, folks,” George barked. “We’ve got quotas to meet.”

At the halfway point, Jack encountered Molly Boyle, the designated communications contractor. She handed him a glossy brochure titled “Affordable Housing: A Hole-in-One Approach.” The pages were filled with stock photos of happy families standing next to manufactured homes. Jack squinted at the fine print: “Results may vary. Consult your state association for details.”

As the round continued, Jack’s frustration grew. He watched as David Goch, the outside attorney, sank a tricky putt labeled “Legal Maneuvering.” The ball disappeared into a black hole marked “Lobbying Efforts.” Jack wondered if he’d ever see it again.

On the 18th green, Jack faced a putt that would determine his fate. The hole was shaped like a dollar sign, and the flag fluttered with the words “Affordability Now!” Jack lined up his shot, remembering David Roden’s email:

“A national Manf. Housing marketing program should be on TV like ‘Go RV’ing’ and ‘Got Milk’ was for years.”

He swung the putter, and the ball rolled toward the hole. But just before it dropped in, the wind shifted, and the ball veered off course. It bounced off a sign that read, “Caution: Bureaucracy Ahead.”

And then, something miraculous happened. The ball ricocheted off the sign, hit the flagpole, and looped back toward Jack. He lunged, catching it mid-air. The crowd gasped. George Allen scowled. Molly Boyle snapped a photo for the MHI newsletter.

Jack grinned. “I’ve got it!” he shouted. “The ultimate marketing campaign: ‘Go Manufactured Housing’!”

The applause was thunderous. Jack had done it. He’d hit the ball and dragged Jack—the entire industry—toward a brighter future. As he walked off the green, he whispered to the wind, “Sometimes, you’ve got to bend the rules to break par.”

And so, dear reader, the legend of Jack lives on. Whenever someone asks about the MHI, they’ll hear the tale of a golfer who defied convention, embraced absurdity, and turned a wayward shot into a rallying cry for affordable housing.

And if you ever find yourself on The MHI Greens, remember: Hit the ball, drag Jack, and swing for the fences. 🏌️‍♂️⛳️🏡🌟

*Disclaimer: This story is a work of fiction and not intended to reflect the actual …”


MHProNews notice. That golfing tale was entirely from Bing’s Copilot, including the disclaimer. It could, perhaps should, be refined. But it made several interesting observations about just how “absurd” the circumstances are in the manufactured housing industry.  Not everything can be blamed on MHI, or MHI insiders. But given that MHI is supposed to be on the side of the industry and working for growth (rather than consolidation), the question/concerns posed by Roden (see the Masthead linked further below) and others about MHI’s ineffectiveness for the broader industry and those seeking more affordable housing are mutely testified to by the production data shown above. It seems it will take someone willing to ‘defy convention’ and ’embrace absurdity’ to turn a ‘wayward shot’ into a rallying cry for truly advancing affordable housing.

Copilot’s quip is memorable: “Let’s embark on a whimsical journey into the world of manufactured housing, where the green fairways of industry intrigue meet the sand traps of bureaucracy.”

Don’t miss today’s postscript.

With no further adieu, here are the far more serious headlines for the week that was from 5.26 to 6.2.2024.

Part II MHVille Headlines in Review

What’s New on MHLivingNews



What’s New from Washington, D.C. from MHARR

ManufacturedHousingAssocForRegulatoryReformMHARRScreenshot 2024-05-06 071922MHProNewsFactCheckAnalysis


What’s New on the Masthead



Economist EJ Antoni ‘Understated by Feds Through-the-Roof Housing Inflation Crushing Would-Be Homeowners’–Conventional Housing Unaffordable But Manufactured Homes Still Reasonable for Millions


Select Items from Best Selling Author and Speaker Tim Connor, CSP, and his “Words of Wisdom”



What’s New on the Daily Business News on MHProNews

Saturday 6.1.2024



Friday 5.31.2024

Felon FrontrunnerI_JustDonated$300000toTrumpCampaignNoOneAboveTheLawFromTrumpHaterToTrumpSupportBizEconomicPoliticalImpactOfTrumpGuiltyVerdictPlusMHMarketsMHProNews


Thursday 5.30.2024




Wednesday 5.29.2024



Tuesday 5.28.2024



Monday 5.27.2024



Sunday 5.26.2024




Prior to “hit the ball and drag jack” related Q&As, the following were the initial inquiries that ‘teed up’ the ones above. These are serious, and not whimsical.

Copilot, it is pre-dawn on June 1, 2024. That makes it National Home Ownership Month. What is the National Association of Realtors (NAR) doing to promote the annual event on their website and beyond? What is the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) doing to promote the annual National Home Ownership Month on their website or beyond? What is the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI or https://www.manufacturedhousing.org/) doing to promote National Home Ownership Month on their website or beyond?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsCertainly! Let’s explore how NARNAHB, and the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) are promoting National Homeownership Month:

  1. National Association of Realtors (NAR):
  2. National Association of Home Builders (NAHB):
  3. Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI):

In summary, NAR, NAHB, and MHI are actively engaged in promoting homeownership through various initiatives, resources, and events. Whether it’s webinars, toolkits, or advocacy efforts, these organizations are committed to celebrating the importance of home ownership during National Homeownership Month! 🏡🌟1354

Learn more

1 nar.realtor 2 nar.realtor 3 nahb.org 4 manufacturedhousing.org 5 manufacturedhomepronews.com 6 nationaltoday.com 7 bing.com 8 nahb.org 9 manufacturedhomepronews.com 10manufacturedhousing.org…”


Pardon me, but with respect to the Manufactured Housing Institute, I’m not sure that you answered the question directly. Yes, the Institute has social media posts that show manufactured homes in a reasonably favorable light. But as of 6.1.2024 at 4 AM ET, there is nothing on the MHI home page about National Home Ownership Month. A search of the site using their search tool reveals mostly items behind members only logins, and the one that is somewhat relevant is a post from 4.24.2024 that is not found on their home page. Isn’t that tepid or even ineffective promotion, when compared to the robust efforts promoting home ownership projected by the National Association of Realtors or the National Association of Home Builders? Aren’t there members, past and present, of the Manufactured Housing Institute and/or MHI connected state associations that have criticized the Institute for failing to properly promote the industry?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsThank you for your patience, and I appreciate your attention to detail. Let’s delve deeper into the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and its promotion efforts during National Homeownership Month.

You’re absolutely right that the MHI’s promotion seems less robust compared to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Let’s break it down:

  1. NAR and NAHB Efforts:
  2. MHI’s Efforts:
    • MHI’s promotion appears more tepid:
      • Social Media: MHI has social media presence and produces quality videos, but this alone may not be sufficient to create a significant impact.
      • Innovative Housing Showcase: Manufactured homes were on display on the National Mall from June 7 to 9, 2024, as part of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Innovative Housing Showcase2. However, this event is not prominently featured on their homepage.
      • Website Content: As of June 1, 2024, there is no direct mention of National Homeownership Month on MHI’s homepage. The relevant content is buried within items accessible only to members.
      • Criticism: You raise a valid point. Some members and industry stakeholders have criticized MHI for not adequately promoting the manufactured housing industry. While MHI represents all segments of the factory-built housing industry, there have been concerns about the effectiveness of their promotional efforts.

In summary, MHI’s promotion efforts during National Homeownership Month appear less visible and impactful compared to NAR and NAHB. Addressing this gap could enhance the industry’s visibility and advocate for attainable homeownership. It’s essential for MHI to consider more transparent and accessible ways to promote the industry and engage with a broader audience. 🏡🔍12

Learn more

1 manufacturedhomepronews.com 2 manufacturedhousing.org 3 manufacturedhomepronews.com 4 manufacturedhousing.org…”

Without belaboring the point with Copilot, which seemingly attempts to be as fair as possible to MHI, MHI’s “more tepid” promotional efforts are clearly ineffective when measured by the all-important gauge of production of new HUD Code manufactured homes now, versus the far greater production of manufactured homes before the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 was enacted (e.g.: in 1998) (see graphic above or linked here).


David Roden is a community operator who is part of the SECO leadership team. He recently sent an email to Lesli Gooch and Mark Bowersox, the CEO and president of the Manufactured Housing Institute that copied some others involved in manufactured housing, including the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR). It linked to an article on the need for affordable housing and asked said the following. “Subject: Is affordable housing possible anymore? Many articles like this are more common. Our affordable housing options should be more out front of the nations eyes than ever before. A national Manf. Housing marketing program should be on TV like “Go RV’ing” and “Got Milk” was for years. As a park owner, I’ll contribute $100 to a fund for this for every new home I place. Now go ask lenders, mfgs. state associations, insurance for the same and let’s increase production and placement to the levels they use to be at. If not, someone please explain to me in simple terms that I can understand. Please. DR”

Can you find any mention of a response to that from the Manufactured Housing Institute?

BingCopilotAI-Screen1.3.2024MHProNewsI apologize, but I couldn’t find any direct mention of a response from the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to David Roden’s email regarding affordable housing and the need for a national manufactured housing marketing program. It appears that the MHI’s response or acknowledgment of his proposal is not readily available in the public domain. If there have been any subsequent developments or communications, they may not be widely documented online. For more specific information, you may want to reach out directly to the MHI or follow up with David Roden himself12. 🏠🔍

Learn more

1 tuscaloosanews.com 2 manufacturedhomepronews.com 3 manufacturedhomepronews.com…”


In order to continue the charade that MHI is ‘doing something’ there is an ongoing series of meetings. There are oversight and other hearings with members of Congress that MHI is working ‘behind the scenes.’ There are meetings and events with public officials with MHI members present. Oddly, while there are remarks that MHI makes in writing, used with the industry’s members, where is the evidence that MHI asks the tought questions when face to face with a key official? Why are those lacking or entirely absent? And in perhaps the closest such event in recent years that was video recorded by CSPAN, found below, why did that exchange go so badly for the manufactured housing industry’s interests in robust and sustainable growth? Why didn’t MHI mention that critical exchange in their otherwise puffery emails to members?




Then HUD Secretary Fudge was blunt. “Until we start to address this we are going to continue to be perpetually in this kind of situation.” That report above was uploaded by MHProNews on July 22, 2021. Since then the industry’s production creeped up, fell sharply, and is now beginning to creep up again.  Those are the rolling hills of manufactured housing production alluded to by Copilot’s whimsical Hit the Ball and Drag MHI tale.

But MHProNews began to expose this concern approaching a decade ago. Then MHI President and CEO Richard “Dick” Jennison frankly said in the less than 20 second clip of the video below that the industry should grow slowly. What? Why?



MHProNews addressed that with longtime MHI board member Tim William, President and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway owned 21st Mortgage Corporation. Williams passed along his assurance that Jennison would clean that up at the next upcoming Louisville Show. Jennison did so, and frankly said that the industry was capable of achieving 500,000 new manufactured homes per year. That too was recorded in a video posted on the page linked below.


Still and quote are from the video posted on this page. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/we-need-to-remove-the-shackles-on-our-industry-mhi-ceos-historic-call-for-cfpb-feds-to-unleash-manufactured-home-industry-growth-via-more-lending-marty-lavin-in/


Prior presidents and CEOs like Chris Stinebert and Gail Caldwell’s names have been scrubbed from the public side of the MHI website. Why? What did they do or say that merits being erased or forgotten? Curious minds seeking the answers to why manufactured housing is underperforming during a sustained U.S. affordable housing crisis should want to know. But sufficient for now to recall that Stinebert said the industry was poised to recover to the levels seen in the mid-to-late 1990s back in 2004! That was some 2 decades ago. Cardwell pointed out just how much the lack of FHA Title I lending cost the industry in terms of lost sales. Cardwell and an association-finance background. Both become Orwellian nonperson’s on the MHI website. Stinebert and Cardwell went on to other roles outside of manufactured housing, where they appear to have done well.




These are the apparent sand traps of intrigue referenced by Copilot. If artificial intelligence is mocking MHI’s efforts, even with a disclaimer, along with several both in and beyond MHI, aren’t those all reasonable reasons to lean into the actual motivations of the powers that be at MHI?

Those motives were bluntly stated by an MHI insider to MHProNews in the report linked below, where that insider said that MHI has become the tool of the ‘f-cking greedy’ used to enrich themselves despite the costs and harms that may do to others.




These are the facts and reports not found in pro-MHI websites. If someone reads routinely from MHI cheerleaders, it is as often as if these controversies didn’t exist. To escape the sand traps, authentic and positive change must occur. Doing the same things the same way will only yield an insanely similar result.  MHARR said approaching 7 years ago that a new post-production trade group is needed. At about the same time, some in the MHI state association orbit made pitch for a new post-production trade group too. Those calls to action are as or more relevant today as they were then. The difference is there are fewer independents now than then, because industry consolidation – the apparent motivation for the low-production status quo – has only continued.

Copilot said: “many others, found himself navigating the treacherous course of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)” (italics added).  Treacherous is defined as: “guilty of or involving betrayal or deception” and “hazardous because of presenting hidden or unpredictable dangers,” per Oxford Languages. Interesting choice of words used by artificial intelligence to describe MHI, isn’t it? ###




‘If We Keep Doing What We’ve Been Doing We Will Keep Getting What We Got!” – MHIdea-Post-Production Trade Association(s) Status – MHI, MHARR, NAMHCO, Other Examples Considered – Full Transcript plus Analysis




“Hit the ball and drag Jack.” Is it a metaphor for the manufactured housing industry, more specifically, for the Manufactured Housing Institute’s apparent drag on the industry through their failure to perform as they claim?


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Our son has grown quite a bit since this 12.2019 photo. All on Capitol Hill were welcoming and interested in our manufactured housing industry related concerns. But Congressman Al Green’s office was tremendous in their hospitality. Our son’s hand is on a package that included the Constitution of the United States, bottled water, and other goodies.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.com.

Tony earned a journalism scholarship and earned numerous awards in history and in manufactured housing.

For example, he earned the prestigious Lottinville Award in history from the University of Oklahoma, where he studied history and business management. He’s a managing member and co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

This article reflects the LLC’s and/or the writer’s position and may or may not reflect the views of sponsors or supporters.


Connect on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach



Related References:

The text/image boxes below are linked to other reports, which can be accessed by clicking on them.’





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