Title text: New research shows over 60% of the financial collapse's toxic assets were created by power drills.
One common annoyance of American renters is their inability to make simple changes to their dwelling — for example, drilling a hole in a wall to hang a picture — without having to ask for permission from the property owner. In many cases, if the renter drills the hole without asking permission, they are charged for repairs. This is one reason that home ownership can be empowering, as it allows the owner to do anything they wish with their property. This can lead to mishaps however, as shown in the comic when Cueball drills holes in the house to prove his ownership, to the point of structural instability. Cueball's last statement expresses the fact that he was actually better off having someone who could dictate what could and could not be done with his residence.
The title text references fictional research showing that 60% of the toxic assets involved in the United States housing bubble were created by power drills. The implication being that Cueball is not alone in his hole drilling tendencies which created not only structural collapse of the homes, but also the financial collapse of the market as those houses would now be worth far less than the mortgages placed against them. Note the double usage of the word collapse.
- [Cueball is in an empty room, on the phone with a friend.]
- Cueball: I've always rented, so this blows my mind—this house is mine? I own a building?
- Friend: Yup!
- Cueball: I could, like, decide to drill a hole in that wall there, and nobody could do anything about it?
- Friend: That's right!
- [Cueball, off the phone, stands in silence.]
- Ten hours later:
- [Cueball is standing to the left a pile of rubble, on the phone with a friend.]
- Cueball: Can I come stay with you? My house has a... problem.
- Friend: Let me guess: you drilled holes in it until it collapsed?
- Cueball: I don't think I'm cut out for homeownership.
- This may be the same Cueball as the one in 616: Lease, where he is signing a lease.
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