The “don’t know” party…..

I’ve had to say goodbye to voluntaryist libertarianism. Not completely of course, and I’ll still call myself libertarian for lack of a better quick identifier. However, I can’t go along with many libertarians on issues based on ideals which cannot work.

One in particular is complete lack of market protectionism. Libertarians dislike market intervention–and so do I, however, a NATION should take some measures to protect it’s internal job market. We are seeing the effects of FREE TRADE and it has killed us economically. It has added the entire world to OUR JOB MARKET. Imagine if the goods from the rest of the world cost the same–but weren’t as good as our own products. Would you buy cheap crap from China if it cost the same as a quality American product? We would see prosperity–lasting prosperity. We don’t even need to export– our consumer market thrives just fine on it’s own–hell it supports massive nations like China and India (for now), but the jobs here are fewer and fewer ever since free trade agreements eroded our market, leaving us with a crappy service economy sliding into poverty.

Libertarians for the most part believe in free trade. They champion the cause of voluntaryism–and so do I, but force is necessary when someone violates my rights. The job market is mine as a birthright, no one else is entitled to my livelihood. Take that whatever way you will, because I don’t apologize for being an American any longer. I celebrate and practice that which has made us so rich, and if other nations want the same then they should strive to be more like us rather than wanting a piece of the pie. Several times in this nation’s history there existed NO internal taxation. Yes–no internal taxation to run the government. And really when the government does only what it should do and nothing more, internal taxes aren’t necessary. The functions of the government were paid for by tariffs–something completely impossible now because of free trade.

Open borders are something which I will never see as a good thing. Borders are what separates one nation from another. Yes, I have to actually spell that out, because lots and lots of libertarians don’t understand that. Without borders there is no national sovereignty, there is no country. It is then a region, or a zone–but not a country. Without sovereignty we can be told what to do by a foreign nation. Why don’t we go around to every nation in the world and force them to conform to our standards? Because they are sovereign nations. They have a government which makes the laws and this is meant to protect them from foreign rule. The EU is a region. The former countries contained within are de facto STATES. Many of their laws come from Brussels, and the supreme law of the land comes from there. Let me ask you this–if you lived in Slovenia, would you be ok with your laws being made in Belgium? What would you think if a law was handed down by a regional government that you disagreed with? What could you do? Can you see what a slippery slope this is?

Brings me to the last thing I can’t agree with libertarians on….government. I’m a minarchist. I believe in as little government as possible, and everything government does should be of clear and necessary benefit to all citizens. Government is like fire folks–highly useful in very small and controlled amounts. Too much fire and everything is destroyed–and that’s what we are seeing now, but voluntaryist libertarians seem to want no government. I’m open to the idea of privatizing law enforcement, or even more creative solutions like citizen police who volunteer to protect their own neighborhood–in absence of government this is what would naturally occur. But no law? No way of defending the liberty of people because there is no arbiter whatsoever to determine what is law? That I cannot agree with. It’s just impractical.

I think that the voluntaryists are putting people off from libertarianism, and forcing people to continue aligning with the left and right. They are taking their ideals too far into the realm of impracticality.

I think I’m part of the “don’t know” party. I don’t know who to identify with, but I think that I’m not alone, and might even be part of a majority which does not yet have a voice. Really we should do what WORKS, and leave the idealism behind. If something is a proven failure stop doing it, if something has been successful let’s do that. Really all we should be arguing about (as intelligent and rational people), is the measured success of an idea–not the intent behind the idea, not the group-think associated, but rather “is this successful?”, and “will it be successful when applied to the demographic it relates to?”.

I want to see an end to unworkable ideals. Idealism is naive, myopic, and very dangerous because of the zealots who want to force their ideals on others. Idealism is uncompromising, and sometimes compromise must happen because we’re all different. World improvers can be the worst of oppressors, as they truly believe they are correct, and that what they want is in your best interests.

Anyway, these are just my thoughts and ideas. I hope that they’ve caused you to think. As always, thanks for reading.

 

diogenes-of-sinope

Life Under Communism Part 2

Welcome back and thank you for your patience. :)

So…. we’ve gone over the Utopian ideal of Communism–everyone working together as one and providing for everyone’s needs. Sounds good until you examine the details and face the unpleasant truth about human WANTS, and human nature.

Now, we have to face the FACT that people will want more than their needs met. People will want merit based compensation for difficult or skilled work. Humans work together for their OWN benefit, not for the good of any collective (unless said collective is a cult). Knowing this we must conclude that people will try to have more than what they are rationed. We also know that people can be greedy and corrupt, but somehow the commies think that greed and corruption will not exist in a society where there is no private trade. Do greed and materialism exist only because there is an abundance of things to own?  When there is scarcity do you think people are more generous or less? Will those in power be more honest when they will have vastly more power–when they control everything that people NEED to survive?

FOOD. Control of food is power because we require it for survival. Russia tried everything EXCEPT incentive to get the people to produce food. They required all grain to be sold to the government for a fixed price and redistributed, then when that didn’t work they allowed some private trade but fixed the price of grain (they outlawed private trade again a few years later). The reason this didn’t work is because if a farmer cannot produce the grain for the price the government says it must be sold for and still make a profit–then they won’t produce the grain, plain and simple. The government then forcefully confiscated grain (stole it), which led to hoarding. No matter what they did, no matter how much force was used, they couldn’t get people to produce without incentive.

Later, the land in Russia was violently confiscated from the “kulaks” (the land owning peasants) and divided up among the poor peasants. The poor peasants, who’d had no capitalist aspirations to begin with–DIDN’T produce surplus food. Lean times indeed for Russia. Capitalism is based upon surplus goods, no capitalism–no surplus. The government tried to confiscate grain from the poor peasants to no avail. The result, whether from rich or poor peasants was always the same. These poor peasants were happy enough to receive the stolen land, but they didn’t like being stolen from any more than the rich ones did. This example should serve as a warning to the hipsters wanting “the rich” to pay more taxes. When “the rich” are no more—the burden will fall unto you.

Anyway, the government in Russia eventually decided that farming communes were the way to go. These weren’t voluntary, people were sent there just as one would be sent to a prison camp. One in five of these people sent to work in the communal farms DIED. The government agents also confiscated all food including animals. This caused people to resist the government agents, and even to slaughter their livestock rather than hand it over. This resulted in an overall reduction of livestock….and less food.

Collectivization. That was the way forward. Everyone was required to work on a communal farm. These communal farms unfortunately only existed on paper at the time–on the premise that people would WANT to work on communal farms. However, no one wanted to work hard for no reward. They resisted, they protested, they tried to make their voices heard, but when that didn’t work they took to acts of violence, non-compliance and sabotage. The end result was the same as it had been since the Bolsehviks took power–less food.

So, without the option of incentive–aka “evil capitalism”, the government could only do one thing. They started to withhold rations from any peasant opposed to collectivization, they forcibly relocated people to Siberia and Kazakhstan, many of whom perished. Some were simply put on a train and dumped in the middle of nowhere and died due to exposure. PUNISHMENT was the order of the day. Appealing to self interest as a way of getting things to happen was simply out of the question–it flew in the face of Marxism. Greed was an enemy that was apparently worse than mass murder and widespread starvation. One might think “how does the government figure that they can just force people to work, or force people to move?”, and of course the answer is this–in a collective there are NO individual rights. Individuals are to be sacrificed for the collective. People are the property of the collective. The collective owns your labor, your property, and your life.

What happened eventually, is that punishment began to become more widespread and arbitrary, as the leaders found that death and terror were the only motivation they could provide.  So the punishments became worse with time, and were inflicted on anyone, any time, for anything. Meaningful resistance was difficult, the peasantry didn’t have guns. The government confiscated all food and decided who got what, anyone who opposed communism or the government was not given rations at the very least, at the worst they could languish in a prison camp called the Gulag, or dumped in some hellhole where they’d die from starvation or hypothermia. In one incident (chronicled in the book “Cannibal Island”), thousands of starving  people were sent to an island in Siberia during the middle of the winter–where the people resorted to cannibalism because of extreme starvation–sometimes for something as petty as leaving their homes without proper identification. All in all, the “official” death toll reached 12 million, but records stopped being kept after a while, and there is no way to really estimate how many died. The amount of people unaccounted for was closer to 24 million.

This is where the true face of communism, collectivism, or it’s truest essence–communitarianism–reveals itself. It’s UGLY. It is about power and control and is sold to the public with words like “social justice” and “equality”. The elimination of greed can only come about through TERROR and punishment, by breaking a people, because people act naturally out of self interest. The Bolsheviks garnered support for their movement with slogans like “Land, Bread, and Peace”, appealing to self-interest, but denied the right of people to act in self interest after they had all the power.

Eventually the killing died down. The brutality became less prevalent, not because the government became kinder, but because people were resigned to their fate. They did as they were told. They worked just hard enough to meet the quotas, they dutifully stood in the bread lines for hours and took the chance that they may not get any bread at all. They were given utilitarian apartments that they had to share with one or two other families. Having a car was rare. There were no luxuries of any kind. They were told what to do from birth to death. They were very miserable, and eventually most of them forgot how to live without government dictating their lives.

Because Russia couldn’t produce anything in surplus, just about the only thing they had to trade with other nations (and only in the communist bloc) was oil, and really that comprised most of their gdp. With the cold war on and the arms race, space race, etc. bankrupting them, Gorbachev actually invited people to present ideas on how to make communism better, but all that happened was that people began to openly criticize the government. They could see through tv that their standard of living was terrible compared to capitalist nations.

Today the former nation states of the Soviet Union are still struggling to find their way. Without the government telling people what to do, and the idea that capitalism is still a bad and greedy thing–they have a hard time opening businesses and creating prosperity. The policies of communism created black markets, and black markets ALWAYS create crime syndicates (mafias) with real power. The government itself also fashioned elite thugs called the KGB, in English this translates to “Committee for State Security”, and these people, along with Russian mafia, have in essence filled the power vacuum left by the Communists. Free trade is permitted, but state control still persists. So, progress in that area of the world will be slow, and may never occur. Their population is shrinking as abortion is widespread due to poverty. In most poor nations abortion isn’t as widespread because of religious beliefs, but communism outlaws religion, and in fact many Christians were persecuted and executed for their beliefs during the “purges”. During these purges they exterminated scientists, artists, intellectuals, and even people in the communist party not deemed communist enough–anyone who could be considered “troublesome”.

Why did I take the time to get into such heavy subject matter on a website directed at “the rest of us”? Because people need to understand the way these things work, so they can be vigilant against them. Redistribution is communist, and it involves the use of violence. The powers that be WILL make promises that will appeal to self interest, but deny our right to act in self interest when they have gained our support. Big government and a disarmed people WILL result in atrocity at some point–because power corrupts. At the heart of every communist is a denial of HUMAN NATURE. They truly believe that people will voluntarily be unselfish, and choose to dedicate their lives to the collective. They believe that politicians promising to “spread the wealth around” are incorruptible. They cling to slogans like “Hope and Change”, just as the poor peasants of Russia clung to the promise of “Land, Bread, and Peace”.

Stay vigilant.

 

russian-apt-building

 

 

 

Life Under Communism Part 1

What would life under communism be like? To explore this question the first thing we have to do is clear the air about what communism is. I’m going to include the Merriam-Webster definition as a starting point, but I do feel that it’s description is VERY limited.

“Communism: a : a theory advocating elimination of private property b : a system in which goods are owned in common, and are available to all as needed.” Ok. No private property. Who owns everything? The people of course! :p Everyone owns everything. Well doesn’t that sound nice? Until of course you get down to practicalities (something college kids have very little experience with).

The most basic of practicalities is FOOD. How do we get food? Someone uses their land, knowledge and effort to grow it and they sell it to us in exchange for something of value—in all likelihood money. So how does this occur in a communist country? Will the farmer just grow food for free? Or will everyone farm? I would have to assume that there would be communal farms, at which everyone would have to farm. So what if they don’t want to farm? Commies would say they could just do a job suited to them and in exchange they’d get their needs met.

Sounds crappy to me, but let’s say that this was found satisfactory—who would fix the sewers? Surely if all someone is going to get for their labor (which is owned by the collective) is the same as anyone else is getting then they’d rather farm, or sing, or make baskets, or anything really. Repairing the sewers is a job that holds no appeal to anyone. So…what if no one wanted to do it? This brings us to the rallying cry of silver spoony college kids wearing their trendy little Che Guevara shirts that communism is “stateless”, meaning no government. They also assert that everyone is going to VOLUNTEER to do their jobs. So someone is going to “volunteer” to fix the sewers. Ok, let’s pretend for a while that this is true. So everyone works happily for the collective.

The collective owns your labor and no one is allowed to keep what they produce. Say that I work harder than Susie does, or at least I *think* I work harder than Susie does, and because we both get the same reward–I don’t work as hard. Jim sees that I’m not working as hard, he doesn’t want to pick up the slack, so he works less hard as well. This goes on and on until no one works very hard. What do you think the quality of the goods and services will be? Yeah….

Going back to the claim of statelessness, I’ve never been able to get an answer from communists regarding WHO distributes the goods and services, and WHAT is done with those who don’t want to surrender their labor to the collective. Communists believe wholeheartedly that everyone will do their jobs in exchange for the exact same reward, that someone will go to school to be a doctor for the compensation that is earned by a janitor, that dangerous and filthy jobs will happily be taken on for the same compensation as a receptionist. Somehow the goods and services will distribute themselves, OR people will designate themselves to distribute/ration them and be completely honest and not keep more than their fair share. Suuuure…

So the collective owns your labor. You decide however that you’d like to keep some of what you produce, you keep some, your friend thinks that’s a good idea–he’d also like to keep some of what he produces. Another person wants to keep all of what they produce, when they see you keeping some of your production, and others figure that if you all are keeping some to all of your production, that they should too. Also, we all decide that we only want to work a few hours each week. Since this is all voluntary we can do that.

Without ENFORCEMENT of the rule that all of your labor/production belongs to the collective—the entire system collapses. Enforcement. Commies are never clear on how this is done. They really think that no one will want more than what they need. “From each according to their ability, to each according to their need”. NEEDS. No one needs a pool, so kiss that goodbye. No one needs a computer, a cellphone, acrylic nails, stylish clothing, luxury cars, t-bone steaks, lobster, or even meat of any kind. If you really think about needs, all you really need is nourishment, shelter, medical care, and clothing.You may want good quality, but you certainly don’t need it. So…what if someone wants more than their needs met? Most of us don’t live on bread and water in a one room shack, wear rags and drive a shitbox–so it’s safe to assume that people will still want to have more than just their needs met. How do you get people to do their jobs for the mere fulfillment of their needs?

How do you get people to do jobs of varying difficulty for the same reward? How do you get people to do the jobs no one wants to do? How do you keep people from keeping some or all of what they produce? Without incentive (wages) what other method is available to get people to work at all? Who decides who gets what, and who distributes what has been produced by the collective among the members of this collective?

*Silence from the commies…*

It is at this point that we must examine the results of communism from the examples that have already taken place. Stay tuned for terrifying part two….

Karl Marx, the father of the entitlement mentality.

Inflation. A quick, easy lesson.

I do apologize for the length of time it’s taken me to post a new blog. I’ve been rather busy. :)

Anyway, the purpose of this blog is to get ordinary folks to grasp what is going on in our country, and what will be happening down the road, without having to do all the research I had to do.

So I’m going to make it REAL simple. Inflation happens in a few ways.

One kind of inflation is spurred by the federal minimum wage.  When the wage goes up for the lowest paid worker, it goes up for all employees because the people at higher pay grades don’t want to work for what the person in a lower pay grade is getting. So wages go up. Yay! Right?

NO. What happens is that whatever is produced (goods, services) will cost more because the cost of the higher wages is tacked onto the end product. Businesses exist for profit, not the good of mankind–they will make the consumer (you and I) pay for the wage increase by raising the price of the goods/services. That means your bills go UP. The increase in wages is wiped out by a higher cost of living. This is just one way inflation happens.

Another way is through DEBT. This can happen by force (government–next paragraph), or privately through loans. Banks only have on hand 10% of the deposits they receive. They lend out 90%. When the person who gets the loan spends the money, the amount of the original deposit is not truly in the first bank—but on paper it is there. The original deposit was say, $1,000. The bank lent out $900 of that. On paper however, the bank still says it has $1,000 of the deposit. So now there is $1,900–on paper. See how this creates money? It collapses if all the depositors withdraw at once (which is why if a catastrophic market crash occurs the banks will be surrounded by armed guards in riot gear to keep you from getting your money), and that would of course cause deflation (supply of currency contracting, less money for all—painful, but the inevitable conclusion of debt bubbles).

The last way inflation is created is by far the most expedient and will surely doom us all. GOVERNMENT SPENDING. When people think of government spending they think “the government is going to spend my tax money.”–the tax money you paid in and have been paying in ever since you got your first tax paying job….right? NO. Every penny the government ever extorted from you is already spent. That’s why we have a DEFICIT. “National Debt” means that all the money you’ve paid in has ALREADY BEEN SPENT. What the government is spending is LOANS from the Federal Reserve. They borrow from the Federal Reserve these trillions and trillions (one trillion=1,000,000,000,000–won’t fit on a calculator) of dollars WITH INTEREST, and send us the bill. YES, that’s what they do. The Federal Reserve prints it out of thin air, lends it to our government, and charges interest (so it can never be repaid). Just imagine what things will be like when the financial reckoning day arrives….

So this is how inflation works–goods and services go up in price because there is more currency in circulation (paper, virtual, iou’s, etc.). That’s why your grandfather used to get a hot dog for a quarter, but a quarter will buy nothing now. This trend isn’t going to stop as long as the above reasons for inflation continue.

Whenever you want the government to drop bombs or feed people on welfare, or spend any money at all–you ask for higher prices and a lower standard of living, as well as a debt burden that will be passed on to your kids. Wages go up yes, but never at the same rate. It takes a business a lot longer to earn the currency than it takes the central bank to simply print it.

Right now is the last of the good years. There is pain coming for all of us. Not in ten years, but in my opinion, less than five. $16,000,000,000,000 of debt will have to be reckoned with. $200,000,000,000,000 in unfunded liabilities (all the projected spending on promises like welfare, social security, socialized medicine, education, national “defense”, etc.) will have to be paid for somehow, and since they’ve already spent everything you’ve ever been forced to hand over–roll on inflation! Now is the time to honestly think about how you are going to cope. I want you to imagine that your bills are double what they are now. Could you make it? If not you need to come up with a strategy, because if you rely on the government to bail you out—well, that’s just more debt, more inflation, higher cost of living. Unless of course the government puts us all to work. Then we have communism, and the end of freedom. I will save the explanation of how badly communism sucks for my next blog entry. For now, batten down the hatches.

As always, thanks for reading. I hope this has been helpful to you. :)

 

 

 

 

 

The Road Ahead

I read boring economic commentary, books, and news, watch the prices of commodities and the value of currency–because it interests me. I realize that it doesn’t interest everyone so I am going to share with you what I’ve gathered so far.

Ok, so over the next four years we will see at least SIX TRILLION DOLLARS more govt spending (on heaven knows what), and according to “Rich Dad’s Prophecy” by Robert Kiyosaki, the stock market will FATALLY crash no later than the year 2016 because of the retirement of the baby boomer generation. Also there is this derivatives bubble ready to pop.

Right now you’re saying “Whoa whoa! Back the truck up! Where do you get six trillion, who is Robert Kiyosaki, and wtf is a derivative?”.  I’ll explain. Our president, who some of us elected into office, spent 1.4 trillion dollars over the last YEAR. So, I’m rounding up from 5.6 trillion which is just four times 1.4 trillion. I personally think that it will be a lot more than that, because firstly, with inflation driving up the costs of goods and services the government will have to shell out more taxpayer money (lent to us from the Federal Reserve–with interest) to pay for whatever it is they are spending money on. Secondly–it’s going to be Obama’s second term. He can do whatever the hell he wants as he will not need to worry about re-election. He can douse the entire US in gasoline and set a match if he wants, and because of the laws passed in the last twelve years–it’s completely legal for him to do just that. Not that Romney is any better, but hopes of re-election might put him off nuking us. :P

Robert Kiyosaki is the author of a series of books called “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”, on how to make money and be successful, one I highly recommend. In another book called “Rich Dad’s Prophecy”, he tells us that the stock market will crash spectacularly no later than 2016, because the biggest generation ever—the baby boomers—are going to retire at the same time. They have 401k’s which are stock based. 401k’s are investments that people think are retirement accounts. I have met older folks already retired for years, very bitter because “When Bear Sterns/Enron/etc. went down I lost it all”. Scary stuff. Even scarier is that these baby boomers will ALL start “cashing in” their 401k’s leading up to 2016. Not scared yet? Well, what this means is that the stocks in those 401k’s will be liquidated so that seniors can pay for their retirement. The generations below the baby-boomers aren’t big or prosperous enough to buy all of these stocks. So what happens to the stock market when there is way more selling than buying? Uh-huh. :o

Derivatives. So confusing even the people who invented them are probably confused by them. Simply put: they are a toxic load of debt that were purchased on the open market as “investments”. All the bad mortgages, repackaged as investments. Our evil federal reserve made laws for itself when it came into being (probably so that the public would accept it), and Mr. Clinton’s administration repealed one of those laws, the Glass-Steagall act. This is what made this all possible. This is how the banks can give loans to people with bad credit, and then sell those worthless loans to the public through mutual funds, hedge funds, 401k’s, etc.   President Clinton’s administration also made changes to the Housing Act, which is why the banks made the bad loans to begin with. President Clinton felt that everyone in America should have a home–even if they didn’t have the money or the credit. Thank you Mr. Clinton. Anyway, these are absolutely WORTHLESS investments, just waiting to be reckoned with.

So, what does this translate to on the street level?

People that YOU KNOW on welfare, disability benefits, social security or ANY fixed income are going to be hungry and cold (or hot, as may be the case during the summer). This is something to take into serious consideration–because you are going to want to help these people. These could be family or friends, children and old people who we will be sad to see struggle. I promise that you will want to help them, so make “charity” provisions if you can.

Crime is going to go way up. Poor, hungry people get desperate quickly, morals slide, codes of honor forgotten, and as time goes on hatred of anyone who has anything will intensify. Protection is essential, but not enough on it’s own unless you can hire professionals. Blend in. Whenever these issues become self evident–stop wearing jewelry, don’t drive a status car, put your coach handbag and designer clothes in the closet. Don’t let people know you have anything. Don’t make improvements to the outside of your home–let it look a bit raggedy. Women….dress modestly. There will be quite a few people around with nothing to lose, and that will make them very dangerous.

The party is over folks. It was fun while it lasted, but the hens are coming home to roost. I hope I’ve adequately explained where things are going and why. Don’t let it depress you. It’s happened many times before. Just get ready, mentally prepare yourself, and look down the road ahead.

 

 

(Self) Health Care

Not gonna address the evils of socialized medicine vs. the merits of a truly free market, capitalist health care model. Suffice it to say that my years in the UK taught me all I need to know on why anything socialist is bollocks. This blog isn’t about dependence in any way whatsoever, so the topic of this post is SELF health care.

There are a few books you should consider buying. The first, and most important book for you to own is called “Where there is no doctor”. This book is designed for people going into third world countries to teach natives. It really is what you do when there is no doctor around. It contains valuable, life saving info–way beyond any first aid book. I highly recommend this book for everyone on earth. This holiday season BUY it for your loved ones as a present. Another book I highly recommend is “Where there is no dentist”, same kind of book. Both are very important.The third book I think everyone should have is any book about natural remedies and healing–hopefully with photos. It should include sections on herbal medicines, vitamins and minerals, natural cures and therapies. Before any of the “I don’t believe anything works until it has been double blind tested” people reject this advice out of hand—bear in mind that the only medicine available might be herbal or vitamin. :)

I don’t use antibiotics. I keep some on hand because in case of severe, life threatening infections I want to have them available, but I don’t really use them. I take a high dose multiple vitamin every day (Puritan’s Pride ONE), and ever since I started it, I rarely get sick. When I do feel an illness coming on I quickly take 50mgs of zinc, 2,000mgs of vitamin c three times a day (sometimes more), echinacea five times daily, and 3,000mgs of garlic oil, with lots and lots of water. This ideally should be started as SOON as the first symptom appears. Also if you are around sick people, take smaller doses of these same supplements as a prophylaxis.

If the infection is a head cold, throat or lung infection, and I want to get rid of it quickly I will combine the usage of the supplements with taking hot infusions (herbal tea or clear broth as hot as I can stand it) throughout the day and a good sweat before I go to bed. To do that, I take a hot infusion, while I am sitting in a really hot bath (not scalding of course), and just SWEAT (this should only be done if there is NO fever present). Then I take another 2,000mgs of vitamin c and a big glass of water, and GO TO BED. Many times that will knock it right out. Remember that when you are trying to get well that your body does the most healing when you sleep–so give it plenty of vitamin c and water right before bed, so it can do it’s job better. :)

Learning is your key to success in the future. I’m not talking about the racket that is higher education. There is so much you can learn (for free) now to help liberate yourself from the “system”. Next time you think about going to the doctor–unless it’s life threatening–see if you can get rid of it yourself. Acne is managed very well by the use of milk thistle. Warts are gotten rid of with dirt cheap apple cider vinegar. You can draw out skin and wound infections with hot onion poultices. Gout can be managed with lots of water and celery seed to drain out uric acid. I could rattle stuff off all day, but you get my point.

Become educated about your body, how it functions and why it gets sick. I say all the time that there is just no excuse in this day and age of cheap volumes of info at our fingertips to be ignorant. The doctor in my opinion is there for life threatening issues. I find that many times the doctor can turn a bad problem into a worse one, like when they prescribe steroids to a sick person to reduce inflammation. This to me is just crazy. Steroids lower immune response, so the person could get more sick. A lot of doctors will laugh at you if you even broach the subject of natural remedies, as they are taught by big-pharma funded schools that ONLY drugs and surgery work. Anything else is poppycock. Or they will say it’s just “placebo effect”. Well…I guess that useless placebo is pretty damned effective, since I stay healthy and get over illnesses pretty quick. :P I know that these things work, I notice a difference right away if I don’t use my vitamins and supplements.

Herbal Medicine Cabinet:

Arnica cream or gel–for bruises and sprains. Use externally.
Calendula tincture–very gentle antiseptic, use externally.
Comfrey–cream, gel, oil–great for healing broken bones, sprains. External use.
Milk thistle–liver cleanse, trust me we all need it. Use internally on a daily basis.
Echinacea–boosts immune system by mimicking a disease. The dose isn’t as important as the frequency of times you take it in my opinion. Use internally.
Witch hazel–astringent, very effective for helping wounds to close and stopping bleeding. Use externally.
Garlic–raw, tablets, capsules, oil. Very effective anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. It has a blood thinning effect, so it can be used to treat high blood pressure. Use internally and externally.
Elderberry–this is a herbal expectorant. Use internally and not when fever is present.
Dandelion root–Very good cleansing herb, also a terrific diuretic. Use internally.

Vitamins and Minerals:

Vitamin C. Doesn’t matter what kind you get, however the very most effective kind is from fresh fruits. To get big doses you would have to consume a lot of fruit, so keep the powder and tablets handy. I recommend you take at least 500 mg’s a day (especially if you smoke!), and up to 10,000mg’s when sick.
Zinc.  Immune booster, also good for male fertility. Don’t take more than 15 mg’s on a daily basis, and don’t take any on a regular basis without also using copper (most zinc supplements include copper), and take therapeutic doses up to 50mg’s WHEN you are sick or the first symptom shows.
A good, high dose multivitamin. What I mean by high dose is that it is WAY higher than the rda in water soluble vitamins (vitamin c and b vitamins). USE DAILY.
Magnesium. We hear a lot about calcium because of the dairy industry, but to incorporate calcium into our cells we must have magnesium. If you are getting leg cramps then you need magnesium. Magnesium will help to soothe any muscle cramps, and most of us don’t get enough of it in our diet.

These lists are pretty basic, and there are so many good remedies that you can use. I urge you to learn about them and definitely get the books I listed. Getting educated about how your body works and why it gets sick, and how it heals is a good way to reduce your dependence on the doctor, Take care of yourself! Health care is one issue used to enslave us with taxes–so just like the other ways we are dependent on the government, we need to try and cut this apron string as best we can. Doctors aren’t gods, and we can help ourselves.

As always, I hope you found this blog helpful, and thank you for reading. :)

 

 

 

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

HAHA! I’ve used a well known, catchy slogan–but this article contains more practical advice than the purveyors of this slogan generally mean to convey.

I’ve recently reduced my gas bill down to $35 a month. That’s ONE tank of gas in my Toyota Corolla. I did this by moving to a place close to everything I need. My bank, a terrific supermarket, several decent restaurants, a Family Dollar, and the beach are all within a 1/2 mile radius.  Work is done by telecommute (which I believe more companies will start offering as gas prices go up), and anything else I might need is within 3 miles. Whenever I go to Publix I make myself walk it. It’s right up the road–so I refuse to do the American thing and take my car. It’s better for me, better for the environment, better for my wallet. Because I walk, I automatically take my fabric shopping bags, since they are stronger and can hold way more than plastic bags. If I do get plastic bags I reuse them in small garbage cans and you can also fill them with soil and plant in them if you want. Going to the beach or anywhere that’s not a comfortable walk, I take my bicycle and a backpack.

I’ve been learning how to cook from scratch. I mean really from scratch. Dried beans, raw rice, whole chickens, etc. This stuff is really cheap. Around here we have Hispanic and Brazilian supermarkets—rice and beans are ALWAYS on sale. We have some decent meat markets too. The more processing and packaging, the less healthy a product you are buying, the more expensive it is, the more waste that is generated.  I’m trying my best to discover the flavors and uses of all the different kinds of bean (beans are cheap and healthy). I’m amazed that we don’t use fava beans a lot more. What a tasty bean!  Cooking from raw, bulk ingredients reduces waste, and cost.

The crock pot has become my dearest friend, and at some point I’m going to start using a solar oven (will post pics and cooking results when I do), as slow cooking is definitely the way to go. It’s time saving, and pretty much guarantees a delicious meal. An inexpensive, small meat smoker is also a great idea. You can turn cheap, tough cuts of meat into tender mouthwatering dishes like pulled pork, and make amazing jerky. I reuse juice bottles from cranberry juice, and buy frozen juices. The ones in the paper cans are extremely degradable, cheaper than juice in plastic bottles, and space saving in your kitchen. As always, stock up while it’s on sale! Try to buy paper packaged products when possible–completely degradable. Get some of those cereal containers and buy the huge bags of cereal–less expensive and less packaging. Reusing things like soda bottles, milk jugs, and other food/drink containers for growing food bearing plants saves you money on gardening supplies. :D Also, get a composting bin to throw away your vegetable scraps to make good soil for your plants. There are so many ways to reduce the amount of waste you produce and save money at the same time. Usually the two go hand in hand! Being frugal is also being environmentally friendly. :D

A lot of folks would say that they don’t have time for this. They work hard, they need something fast and easy. I would like to see those people think about it from a different angle. If you reduce, reuse and recycle enough, you don’t have to work so hard to get paper money. Also, less of your income will go to buy bombs for dropping on the middle east, or feeding welfare recipients, or any of the other awful things the government does with our extorted tax money. This is the heart of Agorism. This is a way of fighting the government via economic starvation. Let them spend someone else’s hard earned money on their evil deeds! :)

Reducing waste is important in a few ways. It’s not just about reducing the size of the landfills and keeping the water clean, saving wildlife that eats it, gets caught in it, etc. I feel these things are very important, but there is a reason to do it in the name of self-interest too. We don’t know what is going to happen in the coming years. We don’t know if our garbage will be collected, or if it will be collected less frequently. What are you going to do if that happens? Garbage stinks, attracts pests, and presents a health hazard. It’s best if we learn how to cope now and develop good habits before we are forced into that situation.

My articles aren’t all inclusive, I’m just trying to get you to think. Think about every issue we argue about, every issue that worries us–how can YOU make it better? As it turns out, a lot of ways! The government can only screw things up. Don’t rely on it for anything–much less for ANY solutions to our current challenges. Individual pursuits throughout history have made the most difference and brought the most progress. The only thing government has shown itself to be highly prolific in is imprisoning, taxing and killing people.  The goal of the government (and the nature of power over other humans) is eventual slavery (in this case, through debt). BE FREE.

Stay tuned folks…next blog is all about health care. A juicy subject indeed. As always, thanks for reading. :)

 

A flower from my lemon tree…so fragrant…

 

Coping

I didn’t really know what to call this blog. I don’t want to over use words like “survival”, because in all likelihood we will all survive, some will just survive in more comfort and security than others. Thing is, death is not the worst that can befall someone. I think most parents would rather die than hear their kids cry because they are hungry. Linger on that thought for a moment. Far be it from me to use emotional imagery to persuade you, but this is not just a remote possibility. This “it can’t happen here” crap is delusional, and anyone can see it if they just look at the road ahead.

I’m going to explain what’s ahead in plain English. The Federal Reserve Bank that prints our currency has decided to print lots more money until basically the value of your money is completely gone. The effect this will have on you is that you will go to the supermarket and see that a loaf of bread is $10 ($20, $40…$??). Not just a loaf of bread of course, EVERYTHING will cost a lot more than it does now, to the point where you and I will barely be able to afford anything to eat. To make matters worse, the government at some point will probably impose price controls, telling shops that they must sell food items at a certain price (the stupid public will probably demand that the government “do something!”). How that works is, say a loaf of bread is $10, but the president/congress says no shop should be allowed to sell a loaf of bread for more than $5 (along with some socialist tagline of “price gouging”, exploitation, greed, whatever). People will cheer, mostly because they don’t realize that for stores to offer product they must make a profit. If they don’t then they don’t do business. The workers don’t volunteer, the shareholders aren’t putting their money there for the good of mankind, the store owners have bills to pay and investments to make that strengthen the economy. Profit is a necessary requirement. So instead of $5 bread, we won’t see any bread on the shelves at all. This is not a slim possibility, this is highly probable. Thinking that someone in government is going to sort it all out is just insane, as those geniuses got us into this mess and WILL continue to make it worse until……?

Our mentality has to change. The single most important aspect of preparedness is the state of YOUR MIND. We’ve been transformed in just a couple generations from fairly self reliant people who knew how to make most of what they had, to not even knowing how to bake a loaf of bread. No wonder everyone is scared and looks to state leadership to guide them. Don’t be afraid. YOU can do it!

I have posted videos on how to produce some of the things you need. With a pair of pygmy goats (they are smaller than most dogs and very cute), some rennet tablets, and a lemon tree you’d be able to produce your own mozzarella, farmer, and feta cheeses. Yeast is made from fermenting berries, I’ve post a vid demonstrating how that is done. Even something as simple as planting fruit trees in your yard will make you capable of producing something that you will not only use, but others will want to trade you for. You don’t have to learn everything there is to know about self sufficiency, but if you know how to make items that people need you will have something to trade. If the government imposes price controls we will see the rise of black and gray markets–and make no mistake, we will be using them.

Some folks think “well when the end of the world is here I will just lie down and die”. This mentality is repugnant and weak minded, but also short sighted and simplistic. “The end of the world” isn’t gonna happen for a while. Even after this small window of human history where antibiotics are effective has passed, it STILL won’t be the end of the world. Billions of lives will be drastically shortened by bacteria we take a pill for now—but it still won’t be the end of the world. And when this crisis hits and everyone knows it—you will still want to thrive, just like you do now.

“I can’t do anything about it so who cares?” This is the worst mentality of all. It is pathetically lazy, and reveals a weak character. WE are actually the solution. You don’t have to start a mini-farm on a half acre and produce all your own food, but you should make some provisions for living without a supermarket.

We are on the downward spiral, and nothing can stop the economic disaster ahead—but you can accept this and ADAPT (yes….you CAN adapt). You don’t have to be a burden on someone else, or become a criminal to get your needs met–if you learn now. How you fare in the coming years will be directly proportionate to the knowledge and skills you seek out now. Think about what you need on a day to day basis and learn how to produce from scratch—using materials you can produce–essential items that you need. Don’t worry about all of it because there is a reason that trade and barter started to begin with—but HAVE something of your own to offer.

 

Stay tuned my friends…. I have posted videos on how to make soap, cheese, bread, yeast, wine, vinegar, etc. in the videos section. :) If anyone has some good ones they’d like to share please contact me and send a link. :)

***Added in: a way to make vegetable rennet for cheesemaking! http://www.ehow.com/how_6787149_homemade-vegetable-rennet.html

Bare Bones Prepping

Yes….you should prep. Not because the world is coming to an end, but because you have seen with your own eyes the prices of everything growing at a rate faster than you’ve ever seen before. You know things aren’t getting any better. If you don’t, you should. I’ll blog about why things are so bad and getting worse later, but for now, just take my word for it that we are at the tippy top of a roller coaster ride, when ya hear those last few clicks….

Most people just don’t have the money to prep, or that’s what they think. They are usually wrong. Any prepping you can do right now, and have ready for the day that people can’t get their money out of the banks and atm’s–will put you light years ahead of people who’ve taken no preparations.

You don’t need to spend a fortune, but it is a bit of an investment. This particular blog is for people who don’t have thousands of dollars to invest in getting prepared. Obviously the more you spend the more comfortable you will find the rough times ahead, but there is a huge difference between having something, and having nothing.

This is bare bones prepping, so I am only telling you stuff that you will absolutely need. No doubt if you only store these things you will have to get very creative about how you serve it to avoid appetite fatigue. There are no veggies included, but I do recommend SEEDS to grow your own. This guide is simple and cheap, for the folks who aren’t gung ho about it.

WATER

Get a few of those cheap carbon filters with the straws on them. They are designed for camping and cost less than $10 each (Aquamira Frontier emergency filter system). Rainwater is a terrific source of water for washing and cooking, and with the carbon filter it’s completely drinkable (I think personally that rainwater won’t hurt you anyway–people drink it all the time in survival situations). In the event of an economic collapse one hopes that the water stays on, and it probably will, but quality could go downhill as time goes on. Bleach tablets have many uses, one is making water safe to drink (obviously well diluted, drink after 24 hrs).

FOOD

Think staples. Whenever you see rice and beans and pasta on sale—buy them. Parboiled rice seems to for some reason be less prone to bug infestations. Get a plastic tote for $5 and put the rice, beans and pasta in it. Put the bags of rice or beans into food grade bags (not garbage bags–they may contain pesticides), along with some oxygen absorbers, put some mailing tape around the totes and stuff em in a closet.

Spam, canned chicken, tuna, canned ham (on sale or bogof!). Some people don’t like canned meat. Get over it. It’s versatile, it’s already cooked, and just a little bit goes a long way flavor-wise and calorie-wise (in this scenario calories are GOOD). You can make rice dishes, casseroles, soups and stews easily with canned meats. I will be posting recipes in the coming weeks that are specifically for canned meats, so keep checking the recipes section.

You will need to order a couple items, like powdered eggs and powdered butter (get two cans of eggs, one butter), but dry milk is available at the supermarket, pick up a few boxes.

Three large containers of salt, one of sugar and a bunch of dollar store spices.

PROTECTION

Get a 9mm handgun, and a .22 rifle.
9mm is the cheapest ammo to stock now, and the .22 rifle is for small game or people who don’t know how to or scared to shoot a gun. Buy at least 500 rounds of ammo. For ladies, if you want a little more stopping power and a gun that gets good accuracy (little recoil) go for a 38 special. the ammo isn’t as plentiful as 9mm, but unlike the .22lr, is still available. Get hollow point when you can–it does more damage. You will need protection and that’s a fact. Poor, hungry people get violent, and they WILL take hat you have.

For people who don’t like guns, or can’t afford one, get a giant canister or two of “riot control” pepper spray. It looks like a little fire extinguisher and can bring several people to their knees screaming in pain. Make sure it is no less than 17%–police grade. :D  This is the cheapest option, however, you don’t have the advantage of range. This weapon extends out about 10 ft. max. However, it’s better than nothing.

MEDICINE

Look up any meds you are taking online and see if they go bad or lose effectiveness over time. If you are on a med that goes bad, try to get off it or find a replacement that you can stockpile. If you take one that simply loses effectiveness over time—stockpile it. Get extra prescriptions if you can and make sure you have at least a 30 day supply.

MEDICAL

Go to the dollar store and get antibiotic ointment, bandaids, bandages, antacids, pain relievers, ASPIRIN, sleep aids, cough syrup, decongestant, anti-diarrheal meds, vaseline and epsom salts–to begin with. Dollar tree is an awesome place to get these items.

HYGIENE

Bar soap, tampons or pads, shampoo, toilet paper, razors, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and deodorant. These items are also good buys at the dollar store.

POWER

It’s a good idea to at least have the means to power your cellphone if the lights go out. Not saying they will go out—but just that people get a little cray cray when they’re hungry and sometimes power techs can’t get to fallen power lines. OR, if the price of electricity goes up so much people can’t afford it, you will at least want your phone to work–so get a hand crank charger. They are cheap. Another inexpensive thing to have is a solar battery charger and rechargeable batteries. Get flashlights and a battery powered radio. For cooking I’d recommend a little propane burner.

That’s the bare minimum. It’s not ideal, but you will be a lot more comfortable than folks who didn’t prep at all. The folks who don’t prep at all are sadly the people who will be doing things they  really don’t want to do just to feed their families. You can see from this list that this is bare bones, and for the most part does not assume a serious shtf (shit hit the fan) scenario. Even in a shtf scenario—you will be better off than most.

Now you don’t have an excuse not to prep. This list isn’t complicated or long, and if you get a little at a time you will have it built up before you know it.

Yes, it’s this simple. :)

 

 

Traditional Morality and Libertarianism

Some are aware that I’m socially conservative-ish. I used to be fairly liberal, then I got old and realized that liberalism is tearing the fabric of civilized society.

Some criticize me for claiming myself as a libertarian when my social views are conservative(ish). I’ll share with you why.

Libertarianism is both an economic policy as well as a social one. The two go hand in hand. You have freedom from government regulation, and economic freedom. There of course would be some federal laws to protect individuals’ life and liberty, and allow them the pursuit of happiness (as envisioned by the founders). Individual states would mostly make their own laws to suit the will of the people who live in that state.The markets would be fairly stable because of a sound monetary policy and lack of social and economic policies that create gigantic earth swallowing bubbles and drive up the cost of nearly everything–not to mention taxing us to death for it all. Because of this “hands off” role of govt, there would be no more of this stealing from productive people to give to unproductive people that we know today as welfare.

When there is no welfare in a society (one of the tenets of Libertarian philosophy) people cannot do as they please. They have all the legal freedom in the world yes–but the fact that they must suffer the consequences of their bad choices means they MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY.

If teenage girls could not depend on welfare to provide for their children, and the parents of those teenagers then had to financially support the girls and their kids–how freaking fast do you think parents would snap out of it and properly educate young women about sex?

If a man knew that his child and “baby momma” weren’t going to be taken care of by the state and would starve without him, he might think twice about abandoning them, and his baby momma would be more inclined to push for commitment (marriage). Even better, women might actually pick good men to partner with, because if they don’t they and their children will suffer.

If people who are “depressed” or alcoholics getting benefit money for being that way were suddenly told they weren’t going to receive money anymore for being that way–do you think they would be that way for long? If welfare mothers didn’t exist–think about how fewer abused and neglected children there would be, and of course that also means far fewer criminals to be jailed, far fewer victims of crime. When people are held personally responsible for their choices they tend to mind their p’s and q’s. In a libertarian society you could smoke pot all day long on your front porch–but if you allowed that to keep you from getting to work, you would starve.

Traditional morality came about through trial and error. “The right thing to do”, “The done thing”. Thousands of years of trial and error–and no welfare. The Roman Empire was an example of the luxurious debauchery that comes when the struggle to survive has been eliminated–almost every vile act was permissable in Roman society. Slavery, murder (of slaves), and pedophelia were all legal and socially acceptable (with the exception of one Roman Emperor who tried to make changes–but the fundamentals for decadence were still underlying and Rome was doomed). In the end, Rome had soaked the gluttonous citizens with welfare, kept them distracted with ever more sensational entertainment, conquered the world, and overspent everything it had and more trying to retain it’s glorious empire. Sound familiar?

All the hippy libertarians need to grow the hell up and understand that society is only debauched if it can afford the luxury. When we can no longer depend on the state to feed and house us we will need to depend instead on our families and our communities (and they will as a result become stronger)–and that means people will have to be more civil, more respectful, more mature, and most importantly–accountable for their actions.

Naturally, and without government or religious intervention, people would return to doing “the right thing”.