no need to buy back perferred and waste money they will never receive divs again and are worthless .On the other hand the commom can and will receive divs.And as to your examlple it only makes sense if they were to go bankrupt and they have proven to me they are much better managers then most give credit.The company will continue to grow,be it slow but they will survive and when this administration is gone the true economy an the ability to earn money on ones honest ability will shine once again.
They have survived so far, but their survival is not assured. With the "Second Dip" in housing, their concentration in California and the west, and their recent Q1 2011 loss, they are still extremely vulnerable. At present there is no "real" value in the common due to the preferred on the balance sheet.
I will not be holding any more shares until I see some real progress. (Though I might trade from time to time)