The Last Days Of The USA

January 31, 2011

Can Our Nation Be Saved?

by Dr. Walter E. Williams

National debt is over $14 trillion, the federal budget deficit is $1.4 trillion and, depending on whose estimates are used, the unfunded liability or indebtedness of the federal government (mostly in the form of obligations for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and prescription drugs) is estimated to be between $60 and $100 trillion.

Those entitlements along with others account for nearly 60 percent of federal spending. They are what Congress calls mandatory or non-discretionary spending. Then there’s discretionary spending, half of which is for national defense. Each year, non-discretionary spending consumes a higher and higher percent of the federal budget.

The spending path that Congress has chosen for the last half-century is unsustainable and will end up with economic collapse but little or nothing can be done about it unless I’m grossly wrong about the American people. Americans who detest our country and those who love our country are hell-bent, wittingly or unwittingly, on destroying it.

You say, “Williams, that’s not only insulting but shows little trust as well. Explain yourself!”

For the past 30 years, federal tax revenues have averaged 18 percent of the GDP. Federal spending, nearing 30 percent of our GDP, is the problem. To get our economic house in order, there must be large spending cuts, not only in so-called discretionary spending but in non-discretionary spending as well.

To put this in perspective: Defense spending is called discretionary and totals $685 billion. Our deficit is $1.4 trillion. Defense spending could be entirely eliminated and we’d still have a massive deficit. Any congressman unwilling to make cuts in entitlement spending is not to be taken seriously about sparing our nation from economic collapse.

Millions of Americans don’t want their entitlement touched, many of whom are senior citizens. Seniors will tell you that they were forced into Social Security and Medicare, and any congressman talking about cutting those and other entitlements will face their wrath at the ballot box. By the way, according to one study, “Until recent years, Social Security recipients received more, often far more, than the value of the Social Security taxes they paid. For workers who earned average wages and retired in 1980 at age 65, it took 2.8 years to recover the value of the retirement portion of the combined employee and employer shares of their Social Security taxes plus interest.”

Seniors are not the only group who can put the fear of God into politicians. There are massive corporate handouts through programs like the Export-Import Bank, Agriculture Department business and farm subsidies, and the Small Business Administration. Then there’s massive Department of Education spending on K-12 education and higher education. The list of federal programs, described as taking the earnings of one American and giving them to another, numbers in the thousands.

Everyone who receives government largesse and special favors deems his needs as vital, deserving, proper and in the national interest. It is entirely unreasonable to expect a politician to honor and obey our Constitution and in the process commit political suicide. What’s even worse for our nation is that voters ousting a politician who’d refuse to bring, say, aid to higher education back to his constituents is perfectly rational. If, for example, he’s a Virginia politician and doesn’t bring higher education grants back to his constituents, it doesn’t mean Virginian taxpayers will pay a lower income tax. All that it means is that Marylanders will get the money instead. Once legalized theft begins, it pays for everyone to participate. Those who don’t will be losers.

That’s the nation’s dilemma. The most important job for people who want to spare our nation from economic collapse is not that of persuading politicians to do the right thing but to convince our fellow Americans to respect the limits of our Constitution. In his speech to Virginia’s ratifying convention, James Madison said, “Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it; no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it.”

Dr. Walter Williams serves on the faculty of George Mason University as John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics and is the author of More Liberty Means Less Government: Our Founders Knew This Well.

Copyright © Townhall.com. All Rights Reserved.


Expatriation: Top Fifteen Reasons To Relocate to Panama

January 30, 2011

by Russell D. Longcore

Here at DumpDC.com, we want you to consider all your options as you prepare to weather the economic firestorm coming soon to a state near you.

Friday, we told you about the Texas Nationalist Movement, and we think living in Texas would be the first choice of those serious about continuing to live in North America.

Saturday, Dr. Gary North gave another opinion about moving to better environs, and gave great suggestions on how to do a proper evaluation to find your new location.

Today, let’s look at my favorite choice for a place to live outside North America.

Top 15 Reasons to Relocate to Panama

1. Dollar denominated currency

At this point, the Panamanian Balboa and the Dollar are tied to each other. If you relocate before TSHTF*, you’ll be able to use your dollars freely throughout the nation. After the dollar melts, it will be anybody’s guess what Panama will do. But my opinion is that they will choose money that suits the rest of the world, since Panama relies on the world for most of its income.

2. Year-round growing season, abundant fresh food.

Matthew 24:20-21 “But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day. For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.”

If THSTF in fall or winter, what will you be doing to feed yourself and your family? There are very few places in the continental USA that have climates that sustain year-round growing seasons. Panama is near the equator, and the soil is volcanic. Stick nearly anything in the ground in Panama and it will grow year around.

3. Abundant clean water

Panama has a rainy season that fills the rivers and lakes and aquifers every year. I’ve drunk Panama tap water and never had one problem with it…and it’s delicious. Moving into the future, many nations will have potable water shortages. Not in Panama.

4. Tropical climate, little HVAC required

Panama is about 8-9 degrees above the equator, so it’s a tropical climate. But there are prevailing westerly breezes off the Pacific that temper the climate. Panama City is as hot as you might expect. But temperatures in the Panama highlands are 10-15 degrees cooler. Imagine living in a place where the temps never go below 60 and never above 85…year around. One of the most surprising things I discovered is that most houses built up in the highlands are not built with a central heating system. Wrap your mind around that. Think how much money you would save if you didn’t have to heat your house.

5. Government is stable

Panama is well run. Sure, there is corruption. What government doesn’t have corruption? But post-Noriega Panama has been run pretty well.

6. Government is pro-immigration

Panama welcomes immigrants. The resident visa program is very popular. The “Turista Pensionado” visa is the best known. Anyone entering the country as a qualified pensionado is guaranteed to retain that legal status as long as they choose to stay in Panama. And you do not have to be a retiree to qualify for this visa.

7. Panama has the Pensionado program

Panama has the Pensionado Program for retirees. Discounts and tax benefits of all sorts are offered to retirees. Check it out.

8. High-tech backbone for the Internet

All of the fiber optic cables that connect the entire world run along the bottom of the Panama Canal. Consequently, a high-tech community has sprung up in Panama. Internet connection speeds are blindingly fast for obvious reasons.

9. Panama has no taxes on income earned outside Panama

This is a huge benefit, and stands in stark contrast to the US which taxes Americans globally. In my own situation, 100% of my business activity is outside Panama, but with the bandwidth and speed of the Panamanian Internet, I could live there with no Panamanian tax liability. And your pension or Social Security payments can be sent anywhere in the world.

10. National economy growing

The Panama Canal is being expanded to accommodate Supermax shipping. The canal is scheduled to be completed by 2014. Canal income will skyrocket for the Panama government. Their economy is growing by over 8% per year, and will continue into the future.

11. English widely spoken

Because of the American presence in the old Canal Zone for the past 100 years, English is widely spoken. Sure you should learn Panamanian Spanish, the official national language. But it’s great to be able to speak English most everywhere in Panama.

12. Only four hours by jet back to the USA.

Miami and most of the South and West is a four-hour plane ride from Panama City. I catch a jet in Atlanta and step off the plane in Panama City four hours later…which is due south of Atlanta.

13. Low cost of living

Panama has one of the lowest costs of living in all of Central and South America. An average house can be built for less than $50/square foot. Learn more at that link in #7.

14. Escape US regulations

Think of all the Washington regulations that you won’t have to deal with simply because your physical body is no longer in America. Most everything is less expensive in Panama because it doesn’t have the cost of American regulations built in.

15. Dual citizenship available

Panama offers dual citizenship, but it’s expensive. You must live in Panama for five years in order to apply for citizenship. Knowing Spanish and Panamanian history are also required. Proving your financial solvency, your medical condition and many other “paperwork” details are also included in the process. But it can be done. First, move there. Then decide if becoming a Dual Citizen is to your advantage.

Conclusion

There are lots of cool places to choose for expatriation. One of the most important things you must remember is that, unless you are an American Indian, your ancestors expatriated to the USA. My people came from Germany in 1742. I think often of Johann Jacob Langhaar, our patriarch, who brought his wife and infant son to America. He left family, friends and his family history to start anew in America. What motivated him? Was he moving to…or fleeing from?

You’re going to have to make the same choices. Even no choice is a choice. You either plan and choose your life, or react when TSHTF.

DumpDC. Six Letters That Can Change History.

*The Shit Hits The Fan

© Copyright 2011, Russell D. Longcore. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.


Moving How Far Out?

January 29, 2011

by Gary North

(Editor’s Note: Dr. North recommends that you move. After yesterday’s post, I think Texas is the obvious choice if you plan to stay in the United States. But don’t forget to look at tomorrow’s post about expatriation.)

A growing minority of the American public is beginning to catch on to the meaning of the Federal government’s deficits and the Federal Reserve’s QE2. The voters did not understand QE1 in October 2008.

We are beginning to see videos lampooning tax rates. This humor is spreading to Europe. Some choice ones are here.

Yet we know that people prefer to sit tight, hoping for the best, even when the evidence screams: “Things will not get better; they will get worse.”

This raises a question: What are signs that it’s time to move out?

FORECASTING WHEN IT’S TIME TO MOVE

Here are a series of scenarios. They are all based on historical examples.

It is Christmas Eve 1773. You live in Boston. The tea party is over. You own a prosperous trading firm. You deal with imports from Great Britain. You tell your wife that you will sell your establishment to your rival before spring. You say that the British will retaliate. You don’t want to get caught in the crossfire.

You could take the money and move inland. But that would require that you learn new skills. You are a city person.

Or you could move to New York City or Philadelphia. You could even move to Charleston, South Carolina. All are port cities. But you are afraid that this conflict could turn into war. You favor the British Empire. Now what? Could the colonists win? Then what would happen to you?

You decide to move to Canada. You could also choose New Orleans, but you don’t speak French, Spanish, or Creole. You sell your home and move north. You leave behind friends and family. Your wife will gripe all the way to Canada.

Then, a few months later, when the British fleet closes Boston harbor, sending New England into recession, she quits griping about your having sold the business. When the war breaks out in 1775 in Boston, she quits griping that you sold her home out from under her. When Lord Cornwallis surrenders in 1781, she quits griping that you moved to Canada. When 100,000 Loyalists move to Canada, and a few of them start renting from you, she thinks you were a man of great wisdom. Or, quite possibly, she dies of homesickness in 1777, and you remarry a Canadian woman twenty years your junior. After all, you have money. Money covers a multitude of wrinkles. You sold out in time and got out in time. You both live happily ever after. Pretty good, eh?

It is 1862. You are a colonel in the Confederacy. You have been discharged honorably from the army because of an injury. You return home to Atlanta. After the fall of Vicksburg on July 4, 1863, you look at a map. You see that there is a straight shot down the rail lines from Chattanooga to Atlanta. You figure that the Yankees will move west into Tennessee to get in control over the rails in Nashville: the South’s hub. They will head for Chattanooga. So, you sell your home in Atlanta. Your wife owns ancestral land in between Atlanta and Savannah. You again look at the map. If the Yankees take Atlanta, they can march to the sea, and from there up to South Carolina, gaining control of the coast. You persuade her to sell her land in 1864. You take the money and buy land – thousands of acres – in south Georgia, almost at the Florida line. You figure the Yankees will not get there until very late. You pack up your things and move.

In September 1864, Sherman burns Atlanta. Then he marches to the sea, burning and pillaging all the way. The Yankees arrive in your town after Lee’s surrender.

Your wife dies in 1866. You remarry. Your name is Henry Holliday. Your son is named John. You can afford to send him to dental school in Baltimore, because you have lots of land money. He gets tuberculosis and heads west for his health. He moves to Dodge. Then he gets out of Dodge. He heads for Tombstone. He survived to get out of Dodge because his father got out of Atlanta.

Lesson: if you can read a map and draw conclusions, you can do quite well in bad times.

You are a Jewish photographer in Germany in 1935. Hitler has been in power for two years. You decide to get out while the getting is good. You cannot take any money out of the country. The government has imposed capital controls on Jewish emigrants. So, you stuff a suitcase full of old photographs that you have collected, and emigrate to the United States. You keep collecting photographs. In 1981, you sell your collection. In 1995, Bill Gates buys it and moves it underground into a salt cave to preserve it. You die in 1998, knowing that have left behind the greatest single privately owned photo collection on earth. Your name is Otto Bettmann.

You are a Japanese farmer in California. You have just heard about Pearl Harbor. You decide that it’s time to move inland, far away from anti-Japanese sentiment in California. You sell your little farm, get into your car, and head for Austin, Texas. The climate will not be too bad. Austin has the University of Texas. Your kids can attend a good school.

A year later, every Japanese person on the West Coast is rounded up and sent to a concentration camp. Their farms and businesses are sold for pittances. Politically connected people buy them. But Japanese living east of Idaho are left alone.

Lesson: when the going gets tough, the wise get going before there is no more going at all.

MOVE TO, DON’T FLEE FROM

The refugee leaves from. He gets out, but only when the roads are clogged and the market for property is depressed. He takes what he can put onto a cart.

In contrast, the emigrant plans an escape route before his peers think there is anything seriously wrong. They can see that there is something wrong, but they assume that it can’t get worse. They are wrong in some cases. Things get much worse.

The hard part is to accurately forecast how much worse, and then accurately forecast where things won’t get worse. Then the forecaster must put his money where his mouth is. Well, not really. He keeps his mouth shut. He puts his money where his preferred spot on the map is. Then he sells, moves, rents, and then buys.

The early bird gets the worm. Conclusion: don’t be a worm above ground at sunrise.

When was it time to sell a home in California, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Miami? In late 2006. At the latest, mid-2007. How many people did? Not many. How many took the money, moved to Texas, and bought a lovely primary home for cash, bought two multiple rent houses for cash, and paid a low capital gains tax only on the secondary houses? Even fewer.

Looking around at your situation, and making forecasts about what the future is for the United States, where else would you go? Unless you are very rich, probably nowhere outside the United States. But inside the United States, there are many places to go. The climates vary, the cultures vary, and state taxes vary.

For most people, moving out is not an acceptable option. Relatives are nearby. Jobs are not transferable easily. People stay put. They put up with things as they are.

This is why, for a few, there is a market to sell into.

Most people will not get out of the way in time. They are rooted in place. They look at their roots and conclude: “It’s too expensive for me to move. So, I will assume that things will not get any worse.” They filter information based on this original assumption.

They don’t move to. They don’t move from. They sit tight.

Yet Americans move all the time. They are the most mobile large population in history – or were until the rural Chinese started heading for cities in the late 1980s. Every year, millions of Americans move. Half of these moves are across state lines. We change jobs every 7 years – the highest turnover on earth. It’s over 11 years in Japan. So, we respond to incentives: moving to. This is wise. But the incentives are conventional: a better job down the road, a nicer home for the money, a more leisurely pace. The moves are not moves out as much as moves to. I think this is wise.

The question is this: What will be the incentives in five years, after another $7 trillion get added to the Federal government’s on-budget budget? What happens if there is QE3 and even QE4? How will the real estate market be doing where you are today compared to where you would like to be then?

Have you done what Henry Holliday did in 1863? Have you looked at a map?

It won’t be Sherman marching to the sea. It will be Bernanke marching into the sea of debt.

AHEAD OF THE CURVE

You are already way ahead of the curve. You have read my reports and reports like it. You regularly read materials that your peers and relatives rarely see and would not believe if they did read them. But it is clear that, over the last three years, far more people are reading such materials than before.

This makes you aware of what your situation is likely to be in five years. How much thought have you given to the details of what your situation could be?

People think about things in general before they think about things in particular. You have thought about things in general with greater perception than your peers. But this only raises questions regarding specifics. People resist thinking about the specifics. Here are a few specifics to think about.

What will rising long-term interest rates do to housing in my town?

What will the job market be like in my industry? How well will people in my age bracket be doing employment-wise in my industry five years from now?

What is the likelihood that my pension program will still be in force and also growing?

How well will urban real estate do in comparison to small town real estate?

What will be the effect on urban government budgets in a time of rising interest rates?

How solvent is the state government where I now reside?

Will the government impose new taxes, especially a VAT sales tax, to cover the budget?

What likelihood is there that my state will default on its bonds?

In terms of safety, will my location be reasonable?

What climate would I want to live in if energy costs triple?

How dependent am I on income generated in my region?

If I could generate 80% of my income from the Web, would I still want to live where I live today?

Is there a better location socially where my children would be safer?

If I were starting out today, would I move here?

In terms of my pre-adult children, does my present location offer them the best opportunities?

Is the cost of living significantly lower elsewhere?

Is the lifestyle that I really want what I will have in five years?

What is the main liability geographically where I live now?

How much money will it take over the next five years to overcome this liability?

The average Joe has never sat down and asked these questions. He has surely not put pencil to paper, jotting down first-response answers. He prefers to drift along. He prefers ignorance. He fears responsibility. He thinks he can defer it. He thinks he can kick the can.

He is pretty much like Congress. Congress is what it is because voters are what they are.

CONCLUSION

I don’t think most people who live in wealthy first-world nations should move to foreign nations. I do not think there will be a repeat of the pre-War tyrannies. Why not? Because the Web will keep dictators from ever getting into a position to impose tyranny. It might happen in a national emergency such as a biological attack. But such an attack would not honor borders. It would spread.

So, I am partial to a strategy of moving inside the nation. It is cheaper to do this financially and legally than to move to a different country. It is also cheaper culturally. Reduce the cost of the move. When the cost of anything falls, more is demanded.

There is no national leader who commands the charisma of a Hitler, a Churchill, or a Roosevelt. The Web makes it unlikely that anyone like those men will appear again. If they do, the Web will take them down several notches. The Web pops messianic bubbles very fast. The economy pops any who survive the Web’s assault. This is positive.

Get out your map. Get out a pencil and a sheet of paper. Go through the exercise of Map-n-Go.

Before you do, read this.

Gary North is the author of Mises on Money. Visit GaryNorth.com. He is also the author of a free 20-volume series, An Economic Commentary on the Bible.

Copyright © 2011 Gary North


The Texas Nationalist Movement: Foot Soldiers for Freedom

January 28, 2011

The infantry for independence

By Russell D. Longcore

The Texas Nationalist Movement (TNM) is the pointy-end of the spear in the ongoing quest for secession. Nobody on the planet is doing it better than the TNM. They are setting the standards by which all other secession or independence movements will be judged.

The TNM Logo

The eminent Prussian military tactician Karl von Clausewitz (1780-1831) had a lot to say about military tactics, and I’m going to weave some of his best quotes into this article. You’ll understand why as you read.

“The first and most important rule to observe…is to use our entire forces with the utmost energy. The second rule is to concentrate our power as much as possible against that section where the chief blows are to be delivered and to incur disadvantages elsewhere, so that our chances of success may increase at the decisive point. The third rule is never to waste time. Unless important advantages are to be gained from hesitation, it is necessary to set to work at once. By this speed a hundred enemy measures are nipped in the bud, and public opinion is won most rapidly. Finally, the fourth rule is to follow up our successes with the utmost energy. Only pursuit of the beaten enemy gives the fruits of victory.”

The TNM is committed to the lawful, peaceful and legislative secession of the State of Texas. It exists to secure and protect the political, cultural and economic independence of the nation of Texas, and to restore and protect a constitutional Republic and the inherent rights of the people of Texas.

The TNM understands that the power to govern is not found in Austin in the Governor’s office or the Legislature, but resides in the people of Texas. Part of the brilliance of the mission of the TNM is its breadth, focused in those three areas:

Political

• The number one goal for the TNM is to have the Texas legislature pass a law that allows a statewide referendum…an up or down vote by Texans on Texas independence and secession.
• They are organizing Texans who are pro-independence.
• They are educating Texans about independence and secession though statewide meetings, rallies, booths at public gatherings, radio programs and blog radio programs, as well as many other methods of mass communication.
• They are identifying, fielding and supporting political candidates at every level of Texas politics who are friends of Texas nationalism.
• They are shining the light of truth on all Texas government officials at all levels to hold them accountable for adherence to the Texas Constitution and the US Constitution.

Cultural

• The TNM celebrates the preservation of Texas history and its unique culture.
• They work to improve the way of life of Texas communities.

Economic

• The TNM promotes the Texas entrepreneurial spirit by connecting Texas businesses with skilled Texas workers.
• They promote a sound economic system for a new Texas.
• They promote free trade between a new Texas and all other nations.

“Pursue one great decisive aim with force and determination.”

By concentrating on grass roots politics, widespread public support, establishing an historical connection between Texas history and today’s Texas, and forcing accountability at the legislative level, The Texas Nationalist Movement is at once broadening their influence and concentrating their power to effect change.

It is my opinion that no state will secede from the Union before the looming national economic meltdown will occur. But the genius of the TNM is that they will have planted the seeds of independence far and wide in Texas, and when the economic storm waters those seeds, Texas independence has its best chance of growing into a reality…and a new nation.

“If the leader is filled with high ambition and if he pursues his aims with audacity and strength of will, he will reach them in spite of all obstacles.”

The TNM has leaders that will join Sam Houston, Juan Seguin, Jim Bowie, Philip Dimmitt, Edward Burleson and Stephen F. Austin as heroes of Texas history. Let me tell you about the two most important movers and shakers, working tirelessly for Texas independence.

Daniel Miller is President of the TNM. Miller owns Radio Free Texas, an Internet radio station dedicated to only Texas musicians and Texas music. (You cannot listen to this station without smiling. I encourage you to stream this station on your computer.)

TNM Pres. Daniel Miller


But Miller has been committed to Texas independence for many years. He is a brilliant writer, a polished public speaker and pragmatic strategist.

Cary Wise is Director of Membership for the TNM.

Membership Director Cary Wise


Cary is also a native son of Texas, an Air Force veteran, a former Michigan State Trooper and a very successful businessman. Cary decided back in 2009 to forsake national political concerns and concentrate on Texas independence. Under his leadership, the membership of the TNM has swelled to over 250,000 members. Cary is also a convincing and powerful public speaker that can bring a crowd to its feet.

Both of these Texas heroes traverse the state week after week, enthusiastically bringing a message of hope and liberty to people starved for freedom.

“If the enemy is to be coerced, you must put him in a situation that is even more unpleasant than the sacrifice you call on him to make. The hardships of the situation must not be merely transient – at least not in appearance. Otherwise, the enemy would not give in, but would wait for things to improve.”

The TNM is presently calling for its members to flood the phone lines to their Austin lawmakers while the 2011 Texas Legislature is in session. Their strategy is to bring widespread political pressure on each legislator, making these elected solons uncomfortable with such pressure, and aware that the electorate will replace them if they do not support Texas independence. When the legislators consider electoral defeat more unpleasant than supporting the independence referendum, they will vote for the referendum.

”It is even better to act quickly and err than to hesitate until the time of action is past.”

Please do not misunderstand. The Texas Nationalist Movement is in the fight for the long haul. However, the Texas legislature only meets every other year. So, even if the TNM might make a tactical error along the way (can’t imagine what that could be), it is far more desirable to act decisively NOW to influence this present legislative session.

In closing, DumpDC.com commits its reputation, its column space and its money to the Texas Nationalist Movement. We encourage all readers of this article to support the TNM. No matter where you live in the world, you can contribute to the success of the TNM and its goal of a new Texas nation. Then you could move there yourself.

Folks, a membership only cost $20.00 a year. Click HERE to make a generous contribution. You should be ashamed if you don’t.

As Cary says in his radio show, “Man up…cowboy up…” and help make Texas the first new nation on the North American continent. Join the infantry for independence.

Secession is the Hope For Mankind. Will Texas be first?

DumpDC. Six Letters That Can Change History.

© Copyright 2011, Russell D. Longcore. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.


Sober Thoughts on Afghanistan

January 27, 2011

Realities on the Ground

by Fred Reed

(Editor’s Note: One of the biggest reasons America is in such desperate financial straits is that we have invaded other nations. That’s not defense. And prosecuting a “war” halfway around the world is mind-bogglingly expensive. Fred Reed brilliantly outlines the complications our military faces simply because of the underlying reasons America is in the Middle East…oil.)

I get a certain amount of email saying that I am arrogant and dismissive of the intelligence and political knowledge of certain groups, most notably Tea Partyers and the audience of Fox News, but also of the American public in general. Supposedly I talk to them as if they were ignorant when in fact, I am told, they are not. Some critics have compared me to Mencken with his disdain for the Booboisie.

Perhaps they are right, and I have underestimated the knowledge and attention span of the citizenry. I hate to admit it, but, well, truth is truth. With respect to the wars against Islam, I tend to think in military terms, and then write (I confess) in vague generalities. This may appear to be condescension to Sean Hannity’s viewers. If I have done them wrong, I apologize.

All right. Let me try to discuss the wars intelligently, not giving ideological solutions but just stating the problems from the standpoint of those who actually have to fight and manage the wars.

(1) The American command wants to run raids across the Afghan border into Pakistan and Tajikistan to attack Al Qaeda guerrillas who currently enjoy safe havens in those countries. This is needed, say officers, to save American lives. But in Islamabad, Benazir Bhutto’s Falafel Party—she was assassinated, but the party lives on, as intensely nationalistic as ever—says it wants the Pakistani Army to fire on American troops if they “invade” the country.

What now? While the Falafelists are not in power, they are strong in the military. Fighting very nearly broke out during a US helicopter raid against Herat in the Federated Tribal Territories. Do we pursue Al Qaeda at the possible cost of war with the Paki Army? Tough choice.

(2) We are all familiar with the Predator and Raptor drones used to target Al Qaeda suspects in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Pentagon wants to replace the Hellfire missiles fired currently by the drones with the new Mk 48 ADCAP (“Advanced Capability”) missile which, while much more accurate, also has a larger blast radius—meaning that more civilians will be killed. Is it worth it, given the anger aroused among civilian populations by the extra deaths? This is the kind of question that commanders on the ground must decide.

(3) Then there is the difficult question of cultivation of opium poppies. When the Taliban took over following the withdrawal of the Russians from Afghanistan in 1989, they forced farmers into the production of the drug, thus making the rural population dependent on the (small) profits the extremists allowed them. The Americans of course want to eliminate the poppies, but this would do nothing to win the hearts and minds of the growers. (What are the farmers doing to do? Grow potatoes instead? College kids won’t pay $500 an ounce for sin-semilla spuds.)

So what does the military do about towns like Hecuba and Priam, in Sulawese Province on the southern border with Iran, which are transshipment points for drugs crossing Iran en route to European markets? Eliminate them, and lose the population? Or allow the traffic to continue in order to further the war effort? The present solution, if so it is, is to uneasily ignore the question.

Somebody has to make a decision. And it will be denounced in the press as wrong, either way.

(4) Apart from Black Hawk troop-carrying helicopters, the workhorse chopper of the war has been the AH-78 Commanche gunship, now equipped with the BQQ-6 submillimeter-wave radar for detecting the movement of metal armaments (e.g., rifles) at night. The radar is highly classified.

The State Department wants to transfer six of the craft to the Afghan “air force” (actually a few helicopters) to show faith in the Karzai government. The Pentagon says the technology would be in Taliban, and thus Chinese, hands within a week. Worth it? Somebody has to decide, and both answers are wrong.

The (accidental) damage to the Al Aqsa mosque in Kandahar by a drone strike aroused fury among the militant Sufi tribesmen of the region. These have a tradition of almost constant war, dating back to the rule of Peshmurga I, and of Sufi control over the silk trade through the Khyber Pass to Rawalpindi and on to Bukitinggi.

Again, it’s hearts-and-minds versus military objectives. If you restrict bombing near mosques, you give Al Qaeda safe havens. If you damage (or, as some have proposed, even deliberately bomb) mosques, you infuriate the locals and, so say some commentators, produce recruits to Al Qaeda and the Taliban. A? Or B?

(5) Iran. According to Infantry Weapons and Light Armor, the bible of the military small-arms world, Iran is making available to the insurgents the AK 16″-54 (the NATO designation of the long-barreled Iranian knock-off of the AK47, which fires a heavier and therefore longer-ranged bullet). This has long been known.

More worrisome, some of the explosives used recently in roadside bombs show the chemical signature of manufacture at the Iranian arms complex at Bucephalus. These substances, used in shaped charges, can penetrate the side armor on M1 tanks. Tehran wants a stable environment for Bucephalis, since it derives considerable revenue from arms sales, and thus might stop shipping explosives under American pressure. So far it hasn’t.

Should the US bomb the plant, widening the war? Or, instead, accept the additional losses in Afghanistan to avoid stretching forces already spread thin? Not an easy question.

(6) Then there is the tricky matter of Hamid Karzai, the Afghan president in Kabul. The US knows he is corrupt, but has to pretend that he isn’t. Such fictions are part of diplomacy. NATO would like to replace him if it could dig up a suitable candidate—Ahmad Shah Massoud is mentioned, though he is said to be good for splashy photo-ops and not much else. Another suggestion is Yusuf Sala al-Din, but despite his lack of recent political activity he is suspected of hostility to what bin Laden calls “Crusaders,” meaning European invaders of Islamic lands. Who, then? What it comes to is that Afghanistan is not brimming over with democratically-minded leaders.

Anyway, how to get rid of Karzai? He could die in a car accident, but that would be a tad obvious even for the CIA.

(7) Finally another, seemingly minor, instance of what many see as the military’s lack of concern for the feelings of Afghans: General Stanley McCrystal, before being fired by Obama, flew to the town of Augea in Helmand Province—in a Lockheed C-130 Hercules cargo plane. The Herc is designed for unimproved or nonexistent runways, which explains the choice—but it terrified the herds of the villagers, which stampeded into the countryside. Then McCrystal, walking through the town, said audibly that Augea was “full of shit.” True in a sense: any town relying on donkeys for transportation will fit the description. But the village headmaster knew enough English to understand the slur. Net result: another several hundred Afghans who don’t like the US.

Solution?

Enough. My point is that “the devil is in the details.” It is fine to denounce Islamofascism. Yet, while I do not doubt that the foregoing matters are understood by the better minds on Fox News, for example Bill O’Reilly and Sarah Palin, their viewers may have trouble distinguishing truth from fiction. I have not meant to talk down to them, and neither should the folk at Fox.

© 2011 Fred Reed


Carolina Friends Of Liberty: A Template for Secession

January 26, 2011

A line in the sand some would not cross

By Russell D. Longcore

Taking a position is always fraught with peril. One may not necessarily find danger to one’s person, but certainly taking a position can cause others to be uncomfortable with one’s position. It can cause estrangement between old friends, allies and family. But for some, not standing for something is to stand for nothing.

Back in 2010, some of the brightest thinkers in South Carolina…or anywhere, for that matter…got together and began pondering how they could advance and promote the idea of South Carolina secession. The founded the Carolina Friends of Liberty.

One of the organizers was Bill Miller, Editor of SecessionNews.com and SecessionUniversity.com. These two websites are valuable clearing houses for information about secession.

Another was Kirkpatrick Sale. In 2004, Sale and members of the Second Vermont Republic formed The Middlebury Institute which is dedicated to the study of separatism, secession, and self-determination. Sale is Director of the Institute. Sale is considered “the intellectual Godfather of the secessionist movement.”*

At that time, there were also four others whom Smith and Sale respected for their interest in secession and their prominence in the community. Their first objective was to draft a position statement. Over a six-month period, the group had many meetings with many revisions written and rewritten. They had wanted to finish the statement so it could be read on June 28, which is Carolina Day. However, they were not able to make that date. Once the statement had been completed, the four other members of the group decided they could not sign such a statement as it might damage their reputation by promoting such ideas.

Think about that. Think about the quality of a reputation that could be damaged by promoting the words in the Statement that are quotes from the Declaration of Independence. Imagine the content of a person’s character (thanks, MLK Jr.) who refused to take sides against abject tyranny. Consider how low the standard must be when your reputation is found in the minds of despots. The mind fairly boggles.

The Statement is provided below in its entirety. I believe that this Statement should become a template for secessionist positions for any colony/state in America that seeks liberty, and for any group around the globe that wishes to launch out onto the tempestuous sea of liberty.

* * * * * * * * * * *

We believe:

All men and women are endowed by their creator with equal and unalienable rights, among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Governments are instituted to secure these rights.

Governments derive just power from the consent of the governed.

Whenever any government becomes destructive of the above, the People may alter or abolish that government, and institute new government they feel seems more likely to secure these ends.

On July 4th, 1776, representatives of the thirteen original colonies, asserting themselves as a confederacy of free and independent states, charged future citizens with the DUTY to throw off any government which produces a long train of abuses and usurpations resulting in a despotic system harmful to citizens and, should throwing off such government become necessary, provide new guards to secure equal and unalienable rights. It is more than ever necessary, given the crises of these present times, to reflect upon that duty today.

For today, we are constrained to acknowledge, South Carolinians suffer under a system of state government, a legacy of the 19th century that has accepted a subordinate position to the Federal government and made a mockery of its claims to sovereignty. Acting in concert, and over a long period of time, the state and Federal governments have entered into a symbiotic relationship of negligence that has failed the citizenry through its incompetence, corruption, incivility, and indebtedness, making South Carolina a virtual Third World country ranked for decades near the bottom of almost all national economic and social surveys.

South Carolinians aspire to rise above this reduced position. To end this long period of patient suffering, the citizens of South Carolina, we feel, must contemplate restoring their sovereign independence, through nullification of innumerable unconstitutional acts of the Federal government and other legal and legislative steps if necessary; for as Thomas Jefferson said of unconstitutional acts of the central government: the states, “being sovereign and independent, have the unquestionable right to judge of its infractions; and that a nullification by those sovereignties, of all unauthorized acts done under colour of that instrument, is the lawful remedy.” This justifiable pursuit is undertaken with the understanding that if such nullification does not bring about the desired liberty and self-determination for this state, we would keep other options available in the event current and pending crises necessitate a discharge of the duty set forth by the representatives of 1776.

In the course of establishing such independence, it is necessary to distance ourselves completely from that institution of human bondage that the Founding Fathers left in place in 1776 and from the legacy of intolerance and divisiveness that has marked too much of the time since its elimination. At present the scars of that past are well on their way to healing completely, except as they are exploited too often by too many of our elected leaders who seek to empower themselves by promoting divisions and inflaming resentments. We are pledged to overcoming such abuses and bitterness by celebrating the rich South Carolinian culture of language, food, religion, customs, manners, and tone of life that was created by those of both African and European descent, which we believe can be done to the fullest only by an independent South Carolina, liberated from its vassalage to a heavy-handed and intrusive central government in Washington and dedicated to serving as a sovereign beacon of tolerance, reconciliation, and racial friendship.

Carolina Friends of Liberty intends to provide a forum whereby all Carolinian voices, those of the impoverished as well as the comfortable, the powerless as well as the connected, the educated and the merely wise, may be heard and fruitfully considered in a discussion of South Carolina independence.

Our MEANS will include (1) an investigation of the central government’s usurpation of our liberties to a point where South Carolina has been reduced to little more than an administrative colony of a remote and arbitrary power; (2) an exploration of the benefits to be derived from overcoming the subordination to an intrusive central government that has become aggressive abroad and despotic at home; (3) defining a vision for what an independent South Carolina has the potential to become (including economic viability, democratic governance, just social welfare, and appropriate defenses), and comparing it with other sovereign states from around the world of similar size and resources that are flourishing political societies; and (4) research on how to implement such methods, including nullification and interposition, by which our state might strengthen its sovereignty and independence.

Our GOAL is to raise the level of awareness and engage citizens through discourse on the implementation of more effective governance. Through such action, we believe South Carolinians will be in a position better to fulfill the blessings of liberty for the benefit of themselves and their posterity. We aim to provide an exemplary model that inspires the citizens of our state, as well as those from other states in America and throughout the world, to restore and improve those frameworks best able to secure unalienable rights. We trust such a model will emerge from an open and candid look at the alternatives to submitting to an overwrought empire, and concomitantly at the advantages of genuine political life on a more human scale that we believe a free and independent South Carolina might afford.

We invite all peoples to join us in advancing this vision, looking toward that day when we may inhabit an independent state truly dedicated to securing the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all her citizens.

If you would like to join with us in this endeavor, send us an email identifying yourself and your affiliations to: SignOurStatement@CarolinaFriendsOfLiberty.com and we will add your name as a signatory to our list of supporters.

We the following, support this Statement of Carolina Friends of Liberty:

Ronald Holland, Swiss Confederation Institute
Jack Hunter, The Southern Avenger
Russell D. Longcore, DumpDC.com
William Miller, SecessionNews.com, SecessionUniversity.com
Kirkpatrick Sale, Middlebury Institute
Tom Utley, Third Palmetto Republic
Michael Cushman, Third Palmetto Republic, League of the South

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

We here at DumpDC.com are delighted to throw our enthusiastic support behind our brethren in South Carolina, and encourage readers to (1) send an email of support and (2) send this article to like-minded individuals as well as seekers of truth.

Secession is the Hope For Mankind. Who will be first?

DumpDC. Six Letters That Can Change History.

© Copyright 2011, Russell D. Longcore. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.

*Chris Hedges, The New Secessionists, (at LewRockwell.com, April 26, 2010.)


12 Economic Collapse Scenarios That We Could Potentially See In 2011

January 25, 2011

at www.theEconomicCollapseBlog.com

(Editor’s Note: In #5 and $6, the author speaks of food and oil prices as driving global inflation. He’s entirely wrong. There is only ONE thing that causes inflation…central banks counterfeiting the money supply and issuing too much currency coupled with fractional reserve banking that creates money out of thin air. The fact that the stock market is rallying, that oil prices and food prices and most other price increases are happening is the effect of inflation, not the cause.)

What could cause an economic collapse in 2011? Well, unfortunately there are quite a few “nightmare scenarios” that could plunge the entire globe into another massive financial crisis. The United States, Japan and most of the nations in Europe are absolutely drowning in debt. The Federal Reserve continues to play reckless games with the U.S. dollar. The price of oil is skyrocketing and the global price of food just hit a new record high. Food riots are already breaking out all over the world. Meanwhile, the rampant fraud and corruption going on in world financial markets is starting to be exposed and the whole house of cards could come crashing down at any time. Most Americans have no idea that a horrific economic collapse could happen at literally any time. There is no way that all of this debt and all of this financial corruption is sustainable. At some point we are going to reach a moment of “total system failure”.

So will it be soon? Let’s hope not. Let’s certainly hope that it does not happen in 2011. Many of us need more time to prepare. Most of our families and friends need more time to prepare. Once this thing implodes there isn’t going to be an opportunity to have a “do over”. We simply will not be able to put the toothpaste back into the tube again.

So we had all better be getting prepared for hard times. The following are 12 economic collapse scenarios that we could potentially see in 2011….

#1 U.S. debt could become a massive crisis at any moment. China is saying all of the right things at the moment, but many analysts are openly worried about what could happen if China suddenly decides to start dumping all of the U.S. debt that they have accumulated. Right now about the only thing keeping U.S. government finances going is the ability to borrow gigantic amounts of money at extremely low interest rates. If anything upsets that paradigm, it could potentially have enormous consequences for the entire world financial system.

#2 Speaking of threats to the global financial system, it turns out that “quantitative easing 2″ has had the exact opposite effect that Ben Bernanke planned for it to have. Bernanke insisted that the main goal of QE2 was to lower interest rates, but instead all it has done is cause interest rates to go up substantially. If Bernanke this incompetent or is he trying to mess everything up on purpose?

#3 The debt bubble that the entire global economy is based on could burst at any time and throw the whole planet into chaos. According to a new report from the World Economic Forum, the total amount of credit in the world increased from $57 trillion in 2000 to $109 trillion in 2009. The WEF says that now the world is going to need another $100 trillion in credit to support projected “economic growth” over the next decade. So is this how the new “global economy” works? We just keep doubling the total amount of debt every decade?

#4 As the U.S. government and the Federal Reserve continue to pump massive amounts of new dollars into the system, the floor could fall out from underneath the U.S. dollar at any time. The truth is that we are already starting to see inflation really accelerate and everyone pretty much acknowledges that official U.S. governments figures for inflation are an absolute joke. According to one new study, the cost of college tuition has risen 286% over the last 20 years, and the cost of “hospital, nursing-home and adult-day-care services” rose 269% during those same two decades. All of this happened during a period of supposedly “low” inflation. So what are price increases going to look like when we actually have “high” inflation?

#5 One of the primary drivers of global inflation during 2011 could be the price of oil. A large number of economists are now projecting that the price of oil could surge well past $100 dollars a barrel in 2011. If that happens, it is going to put significant pressure on the price of almost everything else in the entire global economy. In fact, as I have explained previously, the higher the price of oil goes, the faster the U.S. economy will decline.

#6 Food inflation is already so bad in some areas of the globe that it is setting off massive food riots in nations such as Tunisia and Algeria. In fact, there have been reports of people setting themselves on fire all over the Middle East as a way to draw attention to how desperate they are. So what is going to happen if global food prices go up another 10 or 20 percent and food riots spread literally all over the globe during 2011?

#7 There are persistent rumors that simply will not go away of massive physical gold and silver shortages. Demand for precious metals has never been higher. So what is going to happen when many investors begin to absolutely insist on physical delivery of their precious metals? What is going to happen when the fact that far, far, far more “paper gold” and “paper silver” has been sold than has ever actually physically existed in the history of the planet starts to come out? What would that do to the price of gold and silver?

#8 The U.S. housing industry could plunge the U.S. economy into another recession at any time. The real estate market is absolutely flooded with homes and virtually nobody is buying. This massive oversupply of homes means that the construction of new homes has fallen off a cliff. In 2010, only 703,000 single family, multi-family and manufactured homes were completed. This was a new record low, and it was down 17% from the previous all-time record which had just been set in 2009.

#9 A combination of extreme weather and disease could make this an absolutely brutal year for U.S. farmers. This winter we have already seen thousands of new cold weather and snowfall records set across the United States. Now there is some very disturbing news emerging out of Florida of an “incurable bacteria” that is ravaging citrus crops all over Florida. Is there a reason why so many bad things are happening all of a sudden?

#10 The municipal bond crisis could go “supernova” at any time. Already, investors are bailing out of bonds at a frightening pace. State and local government debt is now sitting at an all-time high of 22 percent of U.S. GDP. According to Meredith Whitney, the municipal bond crisis that we are facing is a gigantic threat to our financial system….

“It has tentacles as wide as anything I’ve seen. I think next to housing this is the single most important issue in the United States and certainly the largest threat to the U.S. economy.”

#11 Of course on top of everything else, the quadrillion dollar derivatives bubble could burst at any time. Right now we are watching the greatest financial casino in the history of the globe spin around and around and around and everyone is hoping that at some point it doesn’t stop. Today, most money on Wall Street is not made by investing in good business ideas. Rather, most money on Wall Street is now made by making the best bets. Unfortunately, at some point the casino is going to come crashing down and the game will be over.

#12 The biggest wildcard of all is war. The Korean peninsula came closer to war in 2010 than it had in decades. The Middle East could literally explode at any time. We live in a world where a single weapon can take out an entire city in an instant. All it would take is a mid-size war or a couple of weapons of mass destruction to throw the entire global economy into absolute turmoil.

Once again, let us hope that none of these economic collapse scenarios happens in 2011.

However, we have got to realize that we can’t keep dodging these bullets forever.

As bad as 2010 was, the truth is that it went about as good as any of us could have hoped. Things are still pretty stable and times are still pretty good right now.

But instead of using these times to “party”, we should be using them to prepare.

A really, really vicious economic storm is coming and it is going to be a complete and total nightmare. Get ready, hold on tight, and say your prayers.

Copyright © 2011 The Economic Collapse – All Rights Reserved.


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