A Polity of Castrati

May 31, 2011

Soprano Nation

by Fred Reed

(Editor’s Note: I, too, am one of these knuckle-dragging testosterone-transport systems. After reading Fred’s column, think about secession. I contend that secession will not occur until AFTER the economic collapse. America could very rapidly degenerate into an 18th century scenario. That could mean that a huge number of the femgals Fred talks about…in addition to the feminized males that lack even Boy Scout preparedness…will die of starvation, disease and crime. That will be the historic legacy of feminism.)

“All of the world’s problems are products of the male ego,” said a swaggering bulldagger she-cop in Law and Order the other night. Average gringa. Actually, only some of the world’s problems, as for example wars, are products of the male ego.

Of course, a curmudgeonly male—though I don’t know any of these—might respond, “Woman, everything that keeps you and your sisters from squatting in caves and crushing lice is a product of the male brain.”

Which is true.

It is curious: Women seem to have no idea how profoundly they depend on men, and not just to fix thingy-whiches that make cars go. The pattern is that men invent and women use. Men invented cars, and women learned to drive them, usually without having the foggiest idea of how they work. Men also invented refrigerators, television, aircraft, hair-dryers, and tampons. Since women with few exceptions do not think technically unless they have to, they are unaware of the inordinate amount of inspired brainwork that led over millennia to computational fluid dynamics, band theory, the double helix, and TCP/IP.

We hear much triumphalism from women these days about the “male malaise,” the poor performance of boys in class, their depression and inattention in school, their declining presence in the universities. Why are these thing happening?

It is not that girls are doing better. They have always been dutiful, have pasted pictures neatly into projects, and have done their homework on time. Rather the boys have gone downhill. Why?

Much of it I think results from the relentless imposition of female values on all of society. Once, boys were boys and girls were girls. Now all must be girls, or nearly so.

This matters. Males value freedom over security; women, security over freedom. Men love venturing into the wild, whether in Silicon Valley or unexplored jungles, if any; women do not. Men are fiercely competitive; women, concerned with order and comity. Men are physical, enjoying, even needing, rough sports; women are not. To a man of my generation the country today is unbearably controlled, restricted, safe, and feminized.

This ought to be worrisome, even to women. When men are free, they prosper. Time and again, bright males drop out of college and found Google, Microsoft, Dell, Yahoo, FaceBook, Intel. They go at it with single-minded determination and not a whole lot of humility. This balls-to-the-wall ethos, wing it and see what happens, screw the PhD, eighteen-hour days of frantic programming on Jolt Cola and Cheetos, we’ll slit the competition’s throat with this new app—this is guy stuff. Men like these have made life comfortable enough that feminists have time to complain. Constantly.

The qualities that make life bearable for males have been squeezed out of society by angry women. In the schools, dodgeball is violence, and must be replaced by a cooperative game led by a caring adult. If a third-grader draws a soldier, he is led out of school in hand-cuffs. If he is bored to suicide by some witless gal from a “teacher’s college,” he is drugged. This compulsory niceness is sheer female passive-aggression against males. It works.

The anger of women is real, easily noticed in the frequent snotty remarks and the portrayal on television of men as boobs and louts. Yes, there are among women exceptions and degrees. The anger remains. Why?

I suspect that that the reason is the abrogation of the implicit no-compete clause that once existed between the sexes. In the past, boys were certain things and did certain things; girls were other things and did other things. The girls didn’t drag race against the boys, or think of challenging them at basketball. A girl would try to be valedictorian, but she saw herself as competing against other contenders, not the male sex.

Then came femlib. Women now explicitly saw themselves going head-to-head against men as a sex. It wasn’t a wise fight to pick. Women of ability went into all manner of fields and performed well, as doctors, dentists, editors, reporters, and so on. But it wasn’t enough. Since they were competing not as individuals but as a sex, it was crucial to them that women equal men arithmetically in everything. They couldn’t.

In sports it was hopeless. If there is an Olympic sport other than perhaps nymphette gymnastics or synchronized swimming in which women best men, I am unaware of it. NASCAR would dearly love to have female drivers to encourage women to buy tickets,but it can’t find any who amount to anything; Formula One is worse.

Intellectually things were not so stark. Bright women abounded, and it was easy—thank god, think bright guys—to find women who were smarter than almost all men. Yet it remained that males outperformed females by a large margin on the SAT math section and by a lesser margin, but still a margin, on the verbal. The imbalance occurred on GREs, National Merit, and tests of IQ. Worse, at higher and higher ranges of intelligence, the men outnumbered the women by larger and larger amounts. This is settled science among psychometricians. It is also the glass ceiling. It was, further, the impetus behind affirmative action.

Affirmative action theoretically was intended to give the under-performing classes initial entry, after which they were expected, or said to be expected, to catch up. In fact it quickly became the equivalent of a golf handicap on the able.

Since affirmative action is patronage exchanged for votes, and unrelated to ability, we began to see female ambulance crew who, though perfectly good medically, could not carry stretchers. There were—are—female fire-persons who can neither carry the unconscious nor handle hoses.

Women had found that they could get by political means what they could not on their merits. While many women could compete at most levels on their ability, not enough could do it to produce the desired arithmetic equality. Ah, but women are the backbone of a consumerist society, the buyers, the shoppers. Thus television began pitching ads to women, and telling women what they seem to want to hear, namely that men are dull-witted slugs. Cop shows became populated by unsmiling pistol-toting robo-dyke detectives who confused chronic PMS with manhood. While surveys show that women know less about politics than do men, they vote in larger numbers, and thus could demand special preference. Here we are.

It isn’t going to stop. The country daily becomes more authoritarian, watched, feminized, regulated, and pervaded by disguised hostility that seeks to avenge itself on others. Advancement today depends on race, creed, color, sex, and national origin instead of an ability and drive. In the schools boys will continue to be drugged, repressed, and made into puerile eunuchs.

The question becomes: Where is this leading? What does feminization accomplish? What can we expect of a nation run by and for women?

Fewer wars, just possibly. Declining international competitiveness as schools focus on therapy instead of integration of hyperbolic functions. Miserable little boys gagging down totalitarian niceness and Ritalin. Young men who see no point in going to fifth-rate universities rigged against them. And boredom. Oh god, the boredom.

©Fred Reed
www.FredOnEverything.net


The End Of The World As We Know It

May 24, 2011

TEOTW Is Foolishness – TEOTWAWKI Will Happen Soon

by Russell D. Longcore

The world media was all abuzz last weekend with the prediction of an event known by evangelical Christians as “The Rapture.” Seems a radio preacher named Harold Camping, head of Family Radio International in Oakland, California (what a surprise…California) made a prediction that Jesus Christ would descend from Heaven on May 21, 2011 and call all Christians…dead or alive…up into the sky to meet him, then going from there on the speed-of-light express directly to Heaven. This prediction is based on various Scriptural references to this event, most notably I Thessalonians 4:17, although most biblical scholars agree that the date of the event is unknown. The term “Rapture” is not found in the Bible, but is a term attributed to 18th century American Puritan preacher Cotton Mather. It is based upon the Latin word “rapio,” which means “to take up.”

Can you blame the media, though? I mean, throw the dice on this one. What if the guy had been right? The video footage would have been the most remarkable footage in the history of mankind. Billions of humans disappearing into the sky in an instant? And all of those billions simply disappearing would have caused complete chaos on earth for those who remained earth-bound…”Left Behind,” like the series of Christian novels by Tim LaHaye outlined. News stories ad infinitum!

But Mr. Camping was mistaken once again. No, this is not his first time making this prediction. Still, it was very entertaining while it lasted.

Let’s drop back a little and discuss The End of the World.

In previous articles, I have written about “connotation words.” They are words with an emotional association in addition to the literal meaning of the word. In today’s world there are many words and phrases for which the literal meaning has been lost and only the emotional association remains. Examples? How about love, liberty, freedom, conservative, liberal, racist, faith, belief, Christ? All emotionally charged, yet their meaning is subject to private interpretation. Also consider the word “nigger.” There’s a word so charged with emotion that white people are deathly afraid of using it, replacing it with “n word.” Of course blacks call each other “nigger” all the time. Try watching a black comedian do a standup routine and play a drinking game while you watch. Do a shot every time the comic says “nigger.” You’ll be passed out before he finishes his routine.

But I digress…

The phrase “The End of the World” is just such a connotation phrase. No one ever seems to define it. The term “End of Days” is used interchangeably. But whatever they mean, they do not mean exactly what they say. The end of days would literally mean that time stood still, the earth stopped spinning on its axis and there were no more days. No one believes that will happen. Even if Harold Camping would have been right, the world would not have ended. Even the Mayan predictions of the “end of the world” do not include the destruction of the earth in 2012.

So what is TEOTWAWKI…the end of the world as we know it??

Here is my explanation, and no supernatural event need happen for the end of the world as we know it to occur. Hang with me, this might take awhile.

This really should be known as “The End Of The Global Super Bubble.” Issuing counterfeit money in conjunction with fractional reserve banking created a super bubble that has distorted nearly every human activity worldwide. And every time throughout history that a government has issued counterfeit money, it has created a bubble that eventually bursts. Seems human beings don’t learn from the past.

All of the nations of the earth have conspired together over the last 70-plus years to use counterfeit money and to inflate their currencies. They have chosen one particular nation’s money as the world reserve currency…the money they use to settle debts between nations. That nation chosen for reserve currency status is the United States of America. In fact, America kind of chose itself. After WWII, America was about the only economy not left in tatters. Great Britain, whose Pound Sterling was formerly the world reserve currency, had been pounded to dust. And at that time, the Dollar was backed by gold.

No nation’s currency is backed by gold now. ALL nations have printed fiat money. The world economy of late has been entirely debt-driven. Between the ever-growing worldwide public debt and the steady inflation of currencies fueled by that public debt, money is becoming more and more worthless. And in a few locations, the money actually completely failed. Remember Weimar Germany, Argentina and Zimbabwe? Their currencies became entirely worthless, and they experienced an “end of the world” in their nations.

When the Confederates States of America was founded in 1861, the Confederate money was entirely based on debt instruments, as the Confederacy sold bonds to raise capital. Most of the gold the South could lay their hands on went to Europe to buy war materiel. As the war progressed, the Confederacy issued more and more paper money. Confidence in the money waned and the dates of redemption on the bonds were extended further into the future. By the end of the war, Confederate money was already worthless. So this is the perfect example of secession that failed because the seceding states got money creation all wrong.

The USA’s dollar cannot continue much longer as world reserve currency. This simply means that of all the criminal nations of the earth that have stolen from the population of the earth, the USA’s level of theft has been the most egregious. Some nations have stolen from just their own people, but the USA has robbed everyone. Washington has borrowed trillions of dollars that it can never repay. Combined with a central bank that has printed additional trillions of dollars with no hard value behind it, the dollar’s value is rapidly eroding. So, in a world where many nations hold US Treasury bonds, those nations face the real possibility that they will either be repaid in dollars of drastically diminished purchasing power, or simply left holding Treasury bonds of no value whatever. That is what’s known as “monetizing the debt.”

There is talk worldwide of replacing the Dollar as reserve currency. China’s Yuan is the most likely candidate. China’s economy sits in the catbird seat, much like the US enjoyed after WWII. When the American Dollar collapses, China’s economy is so vibrant…and China’s government is so robust…that it will be able to absorb a complete American collapse in which Washington defaults on 100% of its debt. But most other nations will suffer greatly. Let’s turn our attention now to the suffering that WILL occur after the collapse of the US Dollar.

When Zimbabwe-like hyperinflation occurs, DC will revalue the currency. The Federal Government will have a redemption period, in which you can bring your old Federal Reserve notes to the bank to receive the new money. After that period, your old money will be entirely worthless. It may add a zero, or two zeroes, or six. Two zeroes would mean that your ten dollar bill will only be worth ten cents. To buy a $2.00 loaf of bread you would have to present $200.00 in new money notes. Hyperinflation burns through your cash like fire.

When the dollar collapses, the banks of the world will shut down their Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs). The banks and credit card companies will also shut down the point-of-purchase machines, otherwise known as credit card machines. That means that unless you have cash on hand, you will not be able to buy anything using a credit or debit card. That will also mean that those on government assistance who receive a pre-loaded debit card will not be able to buy food or anything else.

The banks will declare a “bank holiday.” Sounds fun, but nobody will be smiling. A bank holiday is the bank shutting down and not doing business with ANYONE. So, if you’re checking or savings account has money in it, you will be unable to make a withdrawal. The holiday will likely last indefinitely, or at least until the US Treasury prints up the new money to replace the old failed fiat money. Banks might allow customers access to their safe deposit boxes, but that will depend on the physical risk the bankers must assess.

Legal tender laws will be entirely ignored as people understand that the value of the money is evaporating. Merchants will see that currency values are so volatile that the dollar value at 8 am could be higher than it is at close of business. Why should a seller accept “money” that is decreasing in value? So, many sellers will demand either gold and silver, or some other form of value as payment.

The black market of goods and services will spring into life rapidly after the crash. If you have hard money, or if you can barter goods or services, you will have a chance of survival. If you do not have gold and silver coins…real money…you will not have much chance of survival. And naturally, if you have set aside survival stores, you have a chance of coming out the other side alive and in one piece.

Crime

Within hours of the collapse, looting of stores will begin. The looting will begin in inner cities, where the greatest concentration of poor, desperate people live. Then the looting will spread outward from there, eventually spreading to the suburbs and out into the countryside. But don’t think that the looters will only be from the inner cities. There are lots of your neighbors who will become looters too. And once stores have been looted, suppliers will be unwilling to re-supply since their trucks will be targets for highjacking. Envision a beer truck or a bread truck with heavily armed men “riding shotgun.” Just like the stagecoaches of the Old West.

Armed thugs will fill their gas tanks for free as an accomplice holds a gun on the gas station cashier. Gasoline companies will only roll their tanker trucks and refill the tanks with armed escorts. But that only happens if the gas station owner can pay for the gasoline. He’s going to be in the same no-cash boat as most other people.

Those people who are not armed with firearms and a mindset to use deadly force to protect themselves, their families and their property will be victims. It’s not an issue of whether, it will be an issue of when. Almost no one will avoid roaming looters. The question will be who is the greater threat to whom. Thugs only respect superior force. Be sure that your force is superior.

Communications Breakdown

The Internet may be interrupted by your government. Cell phones may stop working, because how are the cell companies going to get paid for service when the money’s no good? And don’t forget radio stations. Most radio stations operate from advertising revenue. The public broadcasting stations operate from donations and government subsidies. After the dollar collapses, and people are scrambling to survive, how many businesses will slash their advertising expenditures? How many people will stop making contributions to charities? So expect to see the majority of radio stations shut down very soon after the collapse. Television stations, cable TV and satellite TV will follow suit, as their revenue is primarily from advertising. We recommend that you become a HAM radio operator as well as CB radio operator.

Hunger and Death

The poor and aged will suffer first and most. Those without food or the means to buy it will die of starvation…a long painful death. Millions will die, and a great many of those millions of bodies will not be buried. Think about it. Who will have money to pay for a casket, burial or cremation? Rotting bodies left unburied always facilitate disease epidemics. Cholera, tuberculosis, HIV, staff infections, Hepatitis B and C, bubonic plague, typhoid and other epidemics regularly occur as the result of mass casualties. So if starvation doesn’t kill you, a plague might. Rapidly, there will be geographic areas you shouldn’t go into because of plague.

People who are weakened by lack of food are also susceptible to a disease epidemic. So it won’t just be the aged or poor that die like flies. People who are on maintenance medication who cannot pay for their medicine will die too.

Law Enforcement

Law Enforcement Officers (LEOs)will face challenges and dangers never before witnessed in the history of this nation. There are already far too few LEOs to effectively prevent crime. After the collapse, it will get worse. LEOs have families too, don’t they? Remember what happened in the wake of Hurricane Katrina? Most of the New Orleans cops didn’t show up for work because they had families to protect. If you dial 9-1-1 after the American economy collapses and the money hyperinflates, you should not expect to ever see a cop at your door. They will only respond to the most serious and grave law enforcement issues. Or, they may be busy enforcing martial law. In my opinion, the functions of the police that we take for granted will be a memory. You will be entirely on your own to protect yourself, your family and your property.

The ONLY human action that can rescue humanity from TEOTWAWKI is the re-establishment of gold and silver-backed money. Simply anointing another nation’s fiat currency as the new world reserve currency may kick the can down the road for a short time, but it won’t fix the worldwide problem. That is, unless a nation like China converted its currency to hard currency and then refused to accept any other currency than the Gold Yuan or gold itself. Remember that the international bankers and the International Monetary Fund are closely allied to Washington. If DC dies, the IMF dies. And if the Yuan becomes the new hard money world reserve currency, the international bankers are stripped of their power to steal. So expect the international bankers to fight Chinese supremacy unless they can continue to inflate and create money from thin air.

We here at DumpDC believe that the gold that is purported to be in Fort Knox is likely long gone. So the statistical chances that Washington could revert to a gold standard are zero. The ONLY logical place that hard money is likely to occur in North America is inside a US State that secedes from the Union. That state will see the hopelessness of central banking, legal tender laws, fiat money and fractional reserve banking and deduce that only hard money can save them from destruction. This must be the first and most important priority for any seceding state. Nothing else will matter if a seceding state gets this wrong. If a seceding state gains its independence from the USA, only to buy into another world currency, it will simply join all the other failing nations in a “me too” effort.

The End Of The World As We Know It is just over the horizon. And it’s true…the world will never be the same once the Dollar collapses. The carnage around the world will be horrific and historic. I sincerely hope that you, dear readers, survive. But individual liberty and property rights could be the phoenix that arises from the ashes of the global financial meltdown. That is, if JUST ONE AMERICAN STATE secedes and establishes gold standard money. If JUST ONE nation of the world makes a decision to fight for its own survival with gold money instead of being dominated by the internationalists and one-worlders. Make sure you place yourself and your family in that sanctuary.

How about a little music that talks about living when “the money’s no good?”

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.


They Are Bringing It Now

May 22, 2011

by Hellesponte & C. Kerodin

(Editor’s Note: Dear Readers, do you know anything about exponential growth? An acorn becomes a tree…a tree becomes a stand of trees…the stand becomes a forest. But it also works in human events. A small amount of money will grow to a fortune over time. But a small seed of tyranny will also grow to totalitarianism given enough time. And toward the end, the compounding effect gets faster and faster. The world powers are accelerating their tyranny and doing it now in plain view, daring patriots to stop them. Eventually, there will be a fight and blood will spill.)

The Indiana Supreme Court ruling, followed by the SCOTUS 8-1 in support of broadening warrantless search powers should clearly delineate for Patriots who is on what team.

Badge & Gun = Team Tyranny.

Black Robe = Team Tyranny.

Elected to Office = Team Tyranny.

Appointed to Office = Team Tyranny.

Bureaucrat in any capacity = Team Tyranny.

You think I paint with too broad of a brush?

I’m not done yet.

Anyone who donates money or time to anti-Liberty groups or campaigns = Team Tyranny.

Any neighbor who votes for D or Establishment R candidates = Team Tyranny.

I will grant you that the last category of people are the least malicious of the Team Tyranny Idiots…but you’d better understand that they are NOT on your team, and some are in this category only because they are too lazy to work up into the active ranks of Tyrants.

And do not bother me with arguments of Who am I to judge my neighbor for voting for Ted Kennedy…

That is garbage, and if you don’t know it then please stand down and get out of the way. There comes a moment in life when you must rely upon your internal moral compass and do the hard things, and leave the philosophy to others once you have made the world safe again for their pontification.

I challenge anyone to identify any single elected or appointed member of the Political Class today who examines every issue through the lens of Constitutional Authority before acting on your behalf in the capacity of their office. You can not name one single announced or potential Presidential, Senatorial or Congressional candidate for 2012 who campaigns on the statement that: Social Security, Medicare & Medicaid are unconstitutional and must be stopped.

Tell me how “fixing” Social Security or Medicare is anything but unconstitutional?

Tell me just how much unconstitutional behavior you are willing to tolerate before you push back with the means Tyrants understand.

Better yet – don’t tell me, it was a rhetorical query. I don’t want to know your inner intent. That’s your business, and the fewer people you let know your intent and tripwires the safer you will be.

Your enemies are dropping the pretense.

The balloon is going up.

They are bringing their fight to you…right now.

Can you identify it for what it is? Or will you look back soon and realize that you missed the window of opportunity?

The time of Mencken is washing upon our ankles. His quote:

Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.

Resist! Reinforce. Reload. Ruckus. Restoration.

Now!

Copyright 2010 & 2011 Christian Kerodin ©

Kerodin.com


Party Like It’s 1929

May 11, 2011

Economy Hanging by a Thread

By Mike Whitney

(Editor’s Note: You’d think that governors and state legislators would read the constant flood of information about the American economy and have a mind to avert the tragedy in their own states. But I guess once a leech, always a leech. It doesn’t occur to a leech that he could be anything other than a leech. Leeches are not leaders…they feed off others. They don’t create…they drain. And leeches don’t usually let go of their host voluntarily…right up to and including the host’s death. America is slowly dying from the effect of the government leeches. The American economy will die soon. We can only hope that the leeches will die with it.)

A bleak jobs report sent stocks and commodities tumbling on Wednesday, while new signs of distress gripped the service industries index. An updated report from the ADP showed that private sector hiring slowed more than expected from March to April as companies struggled to meet rising raw material costs and flagging consumer demand. The service industry index (ISM)…which “ranges from utilities and retailing to health care, finance and transportation”…slumped to its lowest level since August signaling widespread deceleration and a progressive deterioration in the fundamentals. The turnaround has forced economists to rethink their projections for 2nd Quarter GDP and to watch more vigilantly for signs of contraction. This is from the New York Times:

“The economy lost steam in the first quarter. Growth in personal consumption — the single largest component of the economy — slowed markedly. Business-related construction cratered and residential construction fell. Exports stumbled. The only unambiguous plus was continued business investment in equipment and software, which is necessary but not sufficient for overall growth.

In all, economic growth slowed from an annual rate of 3.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010 to 1.8 percent in the first quarter of 2011….

When lauding the economy, Mr. Bernanke and many other economists and politicians point out, correctly, that the unemployment rate has declined from a recession high of 10.1 percent in late 2009 to 8.8 percent now. That would be encouraging news if it indicated robust hiring for good jobs. It does not.

Over the last year, the number of new hires has been outstripped by the masses who have either given up looking for work or who have not undertaken a consistent job search, say, after graduating from high school or college. Those missing millions are not counted in the official jobless rate; if they were, unemployment today would be 9.8 percent. The rate would be 15.7 percent if it included those who took part-time jobs in lieu of full-time ones.” (“The Economy Slows” New York Times)

So, even the New York Times agrees that unemployment would be nearly 16 percent if the figures were correctly calculated. Those are Depression numbers. 14 million people are out of work and record numbers of people are on food stamps (44 million).

Wednesday’s down-market sent commodities plunging as signs of emerging deflation pushed investors into Treasuries. Gold and silver fell sharply. Troubles in Japan, China and the eurozone have intensified fears of a global slowdown and perhaps another bout of recession. The dollar strengthened for the third straight session, in spite of the Fed’s zero rates and $600 billion bond buying program. Trillions of dollars in monetary and fiscal stimulus have jolted stocks back to life, but debt-deflation dynamics in the broader economy are as strong as ever. Unemployment remains stubbornly high, consumer retrenchment has reduced discretionary spending, and housing continues its inexorable nosedive. The stock market continues to inch higher buoyed by central bank liquidity and margin debt, but investors are increasingly skittish and searching for direction.

The soaring price of gas has shifted consumer spending from retail to energy consumption, the opposite of what the Fed had intended. This from Early Warning:

“I doubt energy prices can go a whole lot higher without triggering another recession, so it depends on whether the world can scrape up a few more mbd of oil to keep growth going without prices rising too much more. We will be watching oil production statistics closely…

…We are in an era where the availability of natural resources is not sufficient to support the wealth levels that the developed world has grown accustomed to, along with the speed of growth with which the developing world is trying to approach those same levels….. the global economy keeps trying to grow in a way that is inconsistent with the resource constraints, and then some part of the system tears and gives way….

I would argue that this data is at least consistent with the narrative that, in the post 1973 era, energy is consistently in somewhat problematic supply, and you can think of many of the recessions as showing a pattern in which energy prices are rising as the world overshoots what can currently be supplied, or what can currently be supplied drops as a result of geopolitical events, and energy prices rise until some pre-existing weakness in the global economic fabric tears in the course of a recession, and prices fall back again….” (“Energy prices and recessions”, Early Warning)

Welcome to Peak Oil; the era of resource scarcity has begun. Today’s troubles will to be a recurrent theme in the years ahead as the economy goes from boom to bust and previous levels of growth become more short-lived and unsustainable. Naturally, our leaders have settled on a strategy for addressing the impending energy shortages; endless war disguised as humanitarian intervention. This is the type of shortsightedness that passes as policy.

The main economic indicators are still turned up, but just barely. The economy is hanging by a thread. Loan demand is weak, wages are flat, and markets are on a knife-edge. Here’s a clip from The Big Picture:

“…the real problem is loan demand (confirmed while speaking to bank organizations in half a dozen states over the past year). Loans have to be repaid, meaning that the money must be used to finance the acquisition of employees or equipment that will “pay back” the loan. Common sense. But record numbers of owners (as high as 28%) have reported that “weak sales” is their top business problem while only 4% reported “financing” as a top problem….. Ninety-three percent reported all their credit needs met in March, including 53 percent who said they were not even interested in a loan. No customers means no need for a loan to finance hiring, inventory purchases or expansion (only survival – not a good bank loan!).

But they don’t get it in Washington D.C. And not understanding the problem produces bad policy, and there has been plenty of that. If lending is picking up, it is because customers are showing up and there is a reason to invest and hire. The reverse doesn’t work – you can’t force feed the credit to owners and have more customers suddenly show up ….That’s “pushing on a string”. Just ask the banks.” (“Loan Demand, Not Credit, Is the Problem”, The Big Picture)

There’s no demand for credit because consumers are in the red and need to balance their accounts. (“93 percent reported all their credit needs met in March.”) It’s pointless to focus on getting the banks to lend, when people are broke and don’t want to borrow regardless of rates. Just like its pointless to dump monetary stimulus into the stock market if it pushes up food and energy prices (headline inflation) reducing consumers ability to spend on other things. This isn’t hard to figure out; it’s Econ 101. So, why is the policy upside-down?

That said, the stock market should continue to trend upward for another couple months until the Fed’s bond buying program ends and investors realize that the real economy is stuck in the ditch. But, for now, it’s “Party like it’s 1929″. Bernanke’s punch bowl is overflowing and there’s still plenty of time to make money. The hangover comes later.

Mike Whitney lives in Washington state and can be reached at: fergiewhitney+at+msn.com


Manufactured News: The “Death” of Osama bin Laden

May 3, 2011

Stand By For The Biggest False Flag Operation Ever

By Russell D. Longcore

America…don’t you know when you’re being played for fools? The dictionary defines the word “Credulity” as “a state of willingness to believe in one or many people or things in the absence of reasonable proof or knowledge.” America’s credulity is breath-taking.

I started out Monday, about 7:30 am, hearing the same wall-to-wall headlines from every news source in America that all of you did. And by 8:30, I had pretty much made the decision not to comment about this story, since I didn’t think it would have anything to do with secession.

But by 9:00, I was pissed…and not a small amount scared.

Here are my thoughts sofar:

1. The Usama photos.The Obama Administration didn’t have the common decency to even try to manufacture this story well. The headshot photos all over the Internet showing a bloody dead guy with empty eye sockets are so poorly Photoshopped that even I can tell it’s a fraud. The following link is from The Guardian in London, not exactly a conspiracy theorist website, but one of the most respected news organizations on the planet.

Click HERE For Fake Photos

2. The raid on the Pakistani compound where bin Laden allegedly was killed was burned to the ground. No evidence remains. How convenient.

3. The Obama Administration says that the military killed bin Laden on Sunday, May 1, 2011. That statement is highly questionable. But Usama IS dead…that’s true. They stated that they did DNA tests to prove that the dead guy was Usama bin Laden. I thought it took longer than a few hours to complete DNA testing, which they state is identical to DNA paternity testing. Just because they produce conclusive proof that the DNA sample they used was bin Laden’s DNA, that doesn’t automatically mean that they took the sample from yesterday’s dead guy. But likely they won’t release the DNA tests. And if they did, how would YOU read them?

4.Usama bin Laden had been reported dead by world news organizations as early as 2001. Former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was quoted in 2007 that Usama had died.

5. Burial at sea. Good way to destroy the evidence. No body, no way to verify the story. No burial place that turns into an Islamic shrine.

6.Here is the “Money Quote” for today. Prepare for the biggest false flag “terrorist attack” on American soil to ever occur. By the time the 5:00 news shows rolled around, the talking heads were already mentioning that Al Qaida would look for revenge. For those of you who don’t know what a false flag operation is, here is a quick example. A French pirate ship runs up a British flag when approaching a British cargo ship. The cargo ship relaxes, and then the pirates attack under a “false flag.” It simply means committing some heinous crime and blaming someone else for it using deception.

This entire story sets the stage for Washington to commit another false flag operation, just like the World Trade Center attacks of September 11, 2001. Only this time, the entire nation will be warned in advance that something bad is coming. And when the death and destruction happens, Washington will be able to say “We told you so.”

The new TSA warning system will get a workout. The TSA will clamp down even more on air travel. They may begin searching other modes of travel, like buses and trains. Nothing should be considered too extreme for the TSA.

But that will only be the beginning. If the attack on American soil is sufficiently large enough, or if it occurs in multiple locations, it will collapse the economy. That opens the door for martial law before the 2012 elections, and the elections could be cancelled. More Obama as president for an undetermined length of time. And that would be the LEAST of your problems.

7. Nobody cares about the “birther” issue any more. The American sheeple are too busy waving the flag. Even Rush Limbaugh said complimentary things about the President yesterday.

Of course, I could be wrong about all of this. I’ve been wrong before.

In conclusion, I will say that this Usama bin Laden manufactured news story could be the method whereby Washington competes its mission to fully embrace totalitarianism. And in the face of the potential fallout from this story, secession means more than ever. When Washington moves to invoke martial law nationwide, will ANY state resist? Will ANY state look around them at the death, destruction and disaster, and say “We can’t do any worse than Washington?” Will ANY state secede?

Stay tuned, dear readers. It’s going to get real ugly real soon.

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.


Bad Time in Baltimore

April 25, 2011

A Time for Attention

by Fred Reed

(Editor’s Note: Fred is spot on in his analysis here, but does not hint at how bad it could get and how quickly. In most of the “graveyard cities” he lists…as well as most cities above 50,000 in population in America…or any city where you find a Martin Luther King Boulevard…the city core population is not middle class black families. When the permanent underclass gets hungry and can’t buy gas for their rides, they will fan out into the neighborhoods closeby and keep fanning out in raiding parties. This can begin within the first couple days after the dollar collapses. Remember the video footage of New Orleans after Katrina. And don’t kid yourself that your non-black neighbors will be more virtuous. You should start now asking yourself whether or not you’ll use deadly force to protect your property and your loved ones. That could mean pulling the trigger on a 14-year-old breaking into your house or car-jacking you. You’re going to have to make some life-changing decisions about who you will help and who you turn away. If you have rations to survive for 6 months and you take in two more, now your rations will only last two months. )

I found on the Drudge Report yesterday a cell-phone video of yet another attack against whites by feral blacks in the cities, in this case Baltimore, where in a McDonald’s two black females kicked a white girl into convulsions, presumably due to brain damage. It seems there was a dispute over precedence for the rest room.

You can see the here, at the site of the American Renaissance. AmRen is regarded as racist, and is, but consists mostly of articles from legitimate newspapers. It doesn’t make up its facts. The comments at the bottom are interesting in that they represent the response to the beating by a large part of the American population. Most don’t post such thoughts where the thought police can find them. They think them, and express them to friends.

Things are bad out in the world, with blacks openly furious at whites and a whole lot of whites quietly so in return. It isn’t a recipe for domestic tranquility. A price will be paid.

Two things stand out about the video. First, cell phones with video cameras built into them are changing the landscape of journalism. All teenagers and most adults now carry video cameras, the difference being that the teenagers know how to use them.

This is not unimportant. Note that such siege howitzers of the media as the BBC frequently run shaky, wobbly, low-res footage of such things as Syrian police beating people, or of citizens dying of bloody head wounds. These can be embarrassing enough to affect policy, and make it harder for repressive governments to control the press. It is now a crime in parts of the US to photograph a policeman; here, as in Syria, governments move to hide the behavior of their “security forces.” This is why China censors the internet, and Washington very much wants to. When the Egyptian public erupted, the government immediately shut down the net. It is interesting that Obama wants an “internet kill switch.”

The other salient point of the beating in Baltimore is that the Drudge Report, a huge, huge, huge site, posted the video under a banner headline almost as huge. I don’t know Matt Drudge, and so can’t speak to his motives, but he had to know that posting video of godawful beating of a white girl by blacks is Something One Doesn’t Do.

Various voices ask, Was it racial? Of course it was. You don’t beat someone into convulsing brain-damaged semi-consciousness over precedence in a line for the bathroom. Ravening homicidal hatred is needed. Welcome to the ghetto.

This sort of thing is not uncommon. In a previous life as a police reporter I encountered or knew of many instances, always of a gang of blacks beating hell out of a white, and in a manner to do serious damage. The maidens in the video wanted to hurt the girl, wanted to hur her badly, and continued kicking her dangerously when they had her helpless. It is one thing to punch someone’s lights out, another to kick him repeatedly in the head.

Always the media respond by describing the attackers as “teenagers” and “youths,” and by burying the story as quickly as possible. When I was writing my Police Beat column for the Washington Times, any mention of racial hatred disappeared during editing.

Ignoring the hatred is not going to serve anyone well, black or white. In the Cook County Jail in Chicago, I once interviewed a Three Star Perfect Elite, if my memory of the title serves, a high-ranking man in the BGD, Black Gangster Disciples. These were and probably are a serious gang. Why, I asked him, do black gang-bangers spend so much time killing other blacks? “we’d rather kill whites, but we know we’d lose,” he said, stone cold. This disappeared in editing.

This is not remotely the sentiment of blacks in general, but of the decaying, jobless, culturally isolated slums. If if it boils over, which is entirely possible, nobody is going to like it. More accurately perhaps, a few blacks and whites would very much like it, but it would be hideous to decent people. You don’t solve a problem by hiding its existence.

Why do the media hide the attacks? I suspect that underlying the circumspection is a half-aware realization that if whites really knew what was happening, some might respond in kind, in which case God help the nation. Having no better idea what to do—I don’t either—journalists figure to keep the lid on and hope the problem goes away, which it won’t. The whole business smells of trouble.

Further, journalism is a rigorously conformist profession. You know what you have to say you believe. You say it. Joe Sobran once defined public opinion as “what everybody thinks everybody else thinks.” Exactly.

And the press corps in Washington lives in a hothouse, insulated from the rest of the country, for most of which they have contempt. They pride themselves on racial correctness yet, in a city the majority of which is black, they have only a few black friends unresembling those of the urban badlands of Northeast, and you never see them in restaurants and clubs where most patrons are black. Many seem to want to protect blacks from criticism. They don’t report reality because they don’t see it. What does this accomplish?

Thus if you point out that black schools in the cities are terrible, an assertion with which every black columnist in the US would agree, many journalists will furiously argue that it isn’t true—not quite calling you a racist, but very nearly. And so nothing changes.

Stray thought: What would you think of an oncologist who insisted that your tumor didn’t exist?

I wonder how wise this wanton inattention probably isn’t. The United States has a grave racial problem that isn’t getting better. The problem is not the black middle class, which is about like any other, but the dangerously angry underclass of the graveyard cities—Newark, Detroit, DC, Chicago, Trenton, Dade, Richmond, Atlanta, on and on. I’ve spent many nights in such places. It’s ugly. And it’s explosive. Depending on your politics, you can blame blacks, whites, God, terrorists, or sunspots, none of which changes anything.

Psychology trumps politics. We can do the liberals-vs-conservatives dance, call each other racists, howl and yowl and pose and prance. What fun. But a spring is being wound. The economy declines, auguring cuts in social subsidies and perilous unrest. Los Angeles burned. It can burn again. The hatred is still there. If there is a solution to the racial disaster, we had better find it.

©Copyright 2011 Fred Reed
www.FredOnEverything.net


The Nanny State Can’t Last (Revisited)

April 23, 2011

by Linda Brady Traynham

If only the extraordinarily sensible Dr. Paul were six foot two, with a baritone voice, and would slow down his speech…but he has so much to say, and he will always be beaten by a taller slow-talker with a deeper voice mouthing platitudes and outright nonsense.

Those of us who are “preppers” do so for the very reason you point out: the dregs of our society are supported by the government, as are the weakest members. One of the hardest things I have to do, and I do it pretty frequently, is remind myself that we cannot save everyone. We cannot do it now, and we certainly will not be able to do so in the future which is coming our way at a frightening pace. We must harden our hearts as best we can, or we will all perish together. Let us suppose–and I do not believe the numbers are this good–that 10% of the population has stored six months’ food and can protect it, and that the 2% who still run small farms and ranches are not counted among that number but could preserve livestock and family members from the locusts. At the very best, that would be shy of an eighth of the population able to eat after the crash of the dollar, and does not begin to take into consideration collapse of electric grids and government confiscation. That reduces the matter to very simple arithmetic, indeed: what will feed me for two months will feed me and one other person for one. Four of us will last only two weeks. Eight of us will be out of food in one. As Francisco said to Hank, “It is against the sin of forgiveness I came to warn you,” or close enough. We simply cannot accept anyone into our “family” who isn’t worth what he or she will eat. We have to go back to first principles: if you do not work you do not eat, and unless you produce something of value that a survivalist colony needs as well as earn what you eat, there will be no place for you. Things go wrong; there must be a surplus produced to make up for that and to produce trade goods. The ugliest phrase in the English language will turn out to be, “I thought of that but I didn’t get around to buying it.”

Is a Doctor worth feeding–if he comes with a car full of standard medications? Quite probably. Will a Veterinarian do just as well and even better? Quite probably! We will need to preserve cows, goats, and chickens more than we do people, and the Vet can sew up wounds and has/had access to many medications that humans and livestock both use, such as penicillin and tetracycline.

Obviously, we have no use for the drummer from a rock band (no matter how famous), and a minister had better have other skills as well. How much does he have to contribute if he wants us to take in his wife, a teenaged son, and three children under ten? More than he is ever likely to have, and I’m a staunch Christian.

Can I use a book keeper with arthritis? Yes, of course I can! Somebody has to log inventory, supplies in, supplies out. That is a very time-consuming, exacting job, and one of the things driving me near berserk is how frequently things have disappeared, been ruined, been consumed, or nobody knows where they are. To my horror, I discovered recently that every single propane tank that was supposed to be ready to house people in old motor homes or RVs has been emptied. NOW is a bad time to find out, but it would be anywhere from lethal to extremely inconvenient when there is no more “just in time” inventory. In a time when all we have on hand is all there may ever be it will be urgent to know what we have. On top of which, those tanks run about $20 each to fill and such things add up. No, you can’t fill them from the big propane tank, at least not safely, and all that is in there is all there is, too.

The very sad truth is that most of the population has no idea how to be of the slightest use, and has not made preparations. If someone shows up with a large trailer stuffed to the gills seeking sanctuary we will be able to afford to give him/her/them a trial period to determine if protection and a blessed supply of pure, clean water is worth whatever he/they can offer while they feed themselves. The chances of a bedraggled, desperate couple pulling a toddler in a little red wagon being of any value is very slim. The chances are that members of most families wouldn’t qualify if the oldest generations had made provisions and their progeny had not. I really have no use for a Senior Vice President of one of America’s most famous banks, based on that qualification alone. Fortunately, she is a demon organizer, young, fit, a superb bargainer, and a fine shot who turns into Elly Mae Clampett the moment she hits the ranch, so if my beautiful, very much beloved daughter can traverse the dangerous distance from Dallas to where I live, she can stay. Do I need an accountant being groomed as CFO for a corporation in Seattle? Well…if he can make it here, yes, because he is young, fit, a splendid shot, skilled in martial arts, a magnificent negotiator, an organizer, and a hunter. Yes, I need him, and then we’ll think about him being my son. Do I need Russell Longcore?! Well…he’s awful bright, has an operatic quality voice, and several other skills he can tell you about if he chooses, and somebody has to scrub bathrooms. Actually, everybody has to take turns at scut work. One of my great strengths is that I know when I’m a a leader with command presence and when I’m what’s known as a “warm body,” who can peel potatoes or patch tears in clothing. If there is no electricity it would be nice to have someone who can sing Nessum Dorma and Una Furtiva Lagrima while circling the herd at night. I can teach someone to ride. I can’t teach them to be sensible and as terrific as Russ is! Can I use a really good carpenter who can get along? Sure. Would I take trained military personnel who can be trusted? Of course. Would most of the people in the 175,000 living far too close to me be of any use at all other than as noted? Almost certainly not. If they could be, they wouldn’t be refugees.

One of the things that really needs thinking about and agreement on ahead of time is what sort of social structure a colony needs to survive, and I’ll tell you flat out not to apply for mine unless you understand and can accept that it sure isn’t going to be a democracy. We aren’t going to count snouts on anything more complex than what’s for dinner, and then only from what’s in season and what the Stores Keeper says we can have. No, gentlemen–ladies, if any–I am not joking at all. We’re going to have ourselves a nice little feudal fiefdom for the very simple reasons that a) I have a five year head start, b) I’ve thought all this out carefully, and c) in case anyone has forgotten those are my cattle, goats, pigs, chickens, horses, water, and shelter we’re talking about. I’m no Catherine the Great; anybody who follows the very clear rules will do fine. I’m not bossy, but when I say, “Darlin’ when you get a moment would you…” that is an ORDER and I expect it to be attended to reasonably soon. Nobody has to. They can leave, instead. I have such dreadful rules, too! NOTHING is to be wasted. Leaving an animal unwatered isn’t quite a hanging offense, but don’t do it twice. Or else. Or else what? Or else we’ll throw you out…if you’re lucky. The livestock and gardens, plus our skills and dedication, are what will keep us alive…if anything does. NO fighting, loud, angry voices, backbiting, or jealousy. Because I don’t like it, and that’s my food on your plate even if you did help grow it. Don’t worry. I’m never unreasonable. Unless a better candidate comes along (snort of laughter) Mr. C. (as the hands call darling Charles) makes the decisions around the place. Why? Because he knows how to do it all himself! You don’t reach his rank in the military without learning a thing or two–and he doesn’t boss people around, either, given any choice at all. He is the “go to” man no matter what the problem is because he knows HOW to do whatever it is, fix whatever it is, or come up with a magnificent field fix. If absolutely necessary he’ll “lay a little leadership on you,” as he says, but if he does, you’ll know you deserve it. “Cut brush for the goats every day” means “cut brush for the goats every day.” It’s free, they like it, and it saves feed. If you ask for help, he’ll explain why or show you how. I don’t care how other people choose to set up their colonies, and if you choose to go for elected officials, a boss thug, or to be run by the clergy it’s fine with me. Y’all have a good time. I’ve considered every form of government there is, and for small groups sort of an organized family structure will work best. I am supposing that most of you have read apocalyptic fiction. Remember Patriot? They were all responsible for providing their own food, all of them drank coffee, and within three weeks they were out! Breakfast was oatmeal and lunch was a big pot of (unseasoned, as nearly as anyone said) rice. Dinner was deer or the MRE du jour. No thank you. Three years later the only garden has herbs and they don’t own a single head of stock. They sat around and argued and voted for days on whether and how to rescue a little town that had been taken over by bikers. By the time they finally quit voting and brangling only one traumatized little boy was still alive.

Some things are not suitable to vote on. I could probably come up with a sensible plan for such a situation, but WHY, when I have a man who taught tactics at a l’il ol’ military institution you may have heard of? Mind, I can do the Audie Murphy thing, having found myself in situations where my body was in motion before most people would realize I had “thought” about it at all; most mothers have! I just don’t see any need to reinvent wheels. If I think the neighbors need rescuing I’ll leave it to men trained for the job to plan it and the young and fit to execute the plan while I go make hot cocoa or lemonade, depending upon which I think will be most soothing when I tuck the rescued into a bed with nice, clean sheets and hand them one of the precious, preserved Valium while I croon “There, there, now.” I’m 70 years old, for goodness’ sake, and not trained to take point or rappel off roofs. There are those whose job it is to ride horses and shout “Wolverines!” (Possibly. I prefer nice, quiet ops.) and those of us who know when to make a big pot of hearty soup and contemplate whether it is time to go hide in the woods.

You see what I mean: if you haven’t really thought things like this through, the only kind of two cents you need to be throwing in is mentioning a skill nobody knew you had that is pertinent to the job that needs doing. I wouldn’t put it off much longer.

Regards,

Linda Brady Traynham,


Are My Horses Smarter Than Your Congressmen?

April 22, 2011

by Linda Brady Traynham

Yes, and they’re better-looking and behaved, too.

This probably has all the usefulness of proving a geometric theorem, some of us having enough sense to accept that it wouldn’t be a theorem if we couldn’t prove it, but yesterday my neighbor from Transylvania (nice, means well, doesn’t understand Texas customs) came driving across my pastures (No!) after driving across one of my dams (double no), and came through the gate of my second favorite vista. I’ll give him credit for closing the gate behind himself, but he let two horses out of the pasture in the process, a triple no–and apparently didn’t even notice! At least, I give him enough credit to suppose that if he had he would have come up to the house, apologized, and asked for help catching them and putting them back where they were. This is my first point: just because a man is a renowned PhD in Aerospace Engineering doesn’t necessarily mean he has enough sense to notice the consequences of his actions.

Buck (who is a bay gelding) tossed his head at Irish Brook, who is still in training but is as “cow-y” as the come, telling her, “Get your good-lookin’ hide over here, we’ve got work to do.” The pair of them bunched a dozen new registered Black Angus heifers I am odiously proud of. Somehow Buck communicated to Irish, “Come over this way a little.” When the horses backed off, sure enough, a couple of the heifers started to wander. No explanation needed; Irish pushed them back to the small herd and backed off again. The “little” girls…I dunno, 800 pounds each, mebbe?…stayed where the horses said to.

“Okay,” sez Buck, “Now that we’ve taught them what we want and who’s in charge, let’s move ‘em over to the north-north-west about 300 yards…yeah, this’ll do fine…and go guard the gate,” and they did. He didn’t have to explain to Irish, who is also a registered QH, who grasped intuitively that the purpose was to keep the heifers from making a break for freedom when humans finally brought Skyler and Glen Livet back. Because they’re at least 18 months too young to be bred, they have teenaged hormones, and the stallion who renovated the barn recently to get to Belle when she smelled good would be glad to oblige. The teeny-boppers are still growing and premature pregnancy would stunt their growth for all time and they might die trying to give birth. Buck planned ahead to keep matters from worsening.

I ask you: do your congressmen have that much sense? Can they see the consequences of the behavior of others and take appropriate action immediately? (That being as stupid a question as exists.) That bunch of clowns thinks we’re impressed by what purports to be a 38 bn “reduction in spending” that is less than a tenth that much and far too little to get the job done. And is spread over a lot of years when different Congresses will control fiscal policy. Show us a cut that starts NOW and means something. Sorry, Mr. Boehner, what you did is nowhere near enough, nor is it what we expect of you.

Irish Brook is going to be a whale of a cow horse! And oh, the four of them are beautiful, lined up in a row, and probably getting ready to have a race just for the fun of it. Recently Irish got a lesson in working cattle, and in the process of…

it seems to be some sort of relay, since the horses are starting at different times headed for the same destination…

demonstrating her superb instincts to cut to the right after a breakaway cow. What we call “turnin’ on a dime and givin’ yuh back nine cents change.” She stopped very suddenly, looking around confused. “Where’d my rider go?!” Yup, she moved so fast and so suddenly that she came right out from under an excellent rider with over twenty years’ experience! He had dropped his reins deliberately to encourage her to use her instincts, ready to knee rein (use knee pressure on the off side from where he wanted her to go) if she needed a hint. She didn’t. He did. He’s still laughing about it, because she was doing her job perfectly, and he wasn’t. Laughter…that’s the one he came off of and broke his arm in the process when he learned you don’t carry a cell ‘phone that emits loud rock music suddenly when riding a “green broke” horse even if “there isn’t an ounce of vice in her.” He doesn’t carry a cell when riding, now, and a radio plays constantly down at the barn where the other four have access.

I ask again: does your contingent to Congress have any good instincts, any grasp of its job, or even the ability to notice when an otherwise good idea turns out wrong? Almost certainly not. If Bernanke were a horse he wouldn’t be allowed in my remuda. Pelosi and Maxine Waters would have been sold for dog food while it was still legal. No, they wouldn’t. I wouldn’t have allowed them on the place, and neither would Daddy.

Nobody objects to a little vanity in a good horse, mind, and they are definitely well paid in hay, grain, and a Cadillac insurance plan; they’d run Cass Sunstein off in a heartbeat. However, they show initiative, settle their two differences quietly (who is Boss and who gets at least first treats, preferably all), and have the best interests of the ranch very much at heart. Bonnie Blue got in a snit once because Buck was being ridden and she wasn’t, and went and rounded up all the cows and brought them up to the house. With a toss of her elegant, thoroughbred head, she said, “I’m not just another pretty face, you know, and I’M at least as good a cow horse as HE is.”

Belle–another thoroughbred–is partial to demonstrating that she can blow the doors off anything else on the place because SHE is a former race horse. (Shhh! She’s in her early prime and the others don’t know she never came in better than third and was trained to work cattle because nobody–I guess–wants a former race horse that can’t do anything else. Chuckle…one of the younger thoroughbreds is also race lines, and give Skyler another year and she’s going to leave a very annoyed Belle in her dust.) Buck is the only hoss on the place who isn’t purebred, a deliberate Morgan-QH cross, because those turn out big, smart (even for horses), handsome fellows who make magnificent cow horses. We have a slight problem (involving three fences to separate them!) because Buck doesn’t believe he’s an “it” and it was pure hatred from the moment Poco Bar Knight stalked out of the trailer, whipped his gorgeous head around, and exclaimed, “Wow! Girls! Lots of girls!” and the six girls all giggled, “Oooh, Frankie!”

On another occasion I had a couple of new purchases dropped off in front of the house. The former owner looked at me oddly, and asked, “Are you sure, Ma’am? Won’t be no trouble tuh taken ‘em over tuh where thuh rest o’ yur herd is; saw ‘em when I come in, over in thuh SE corner.”

“No, thank you, right here will be fine.” (Cows are smarter than they look, too.) A couple of minutes later here comes Bonnie Blue, all but rolling her eyes in disgust. She bunches the new girls and wends a complex way around buildings, fences, and gates, and pushes them over to join the herd. Back she comes, and says, “THAT is where cows belong. Do I have to do everything around here myself?!” Buck, meantime, had been running frantically back and forth along the fence of the Horse Pasture sputtering, “Stop! Why does she get to do that? I can do it! It’s my job!” Definitely, horses have the egos for Capitol Hill. In general they can’t be bought, either, although they take handouts happily. They can’t read, but if they could they wouldn’t pass any bills they hadn’t gone over thoroughly. The old owner looked at us in near awe, from which I conclude he had cows but no horses.

We had very bad news from the Vet, yesterday: our Head Cow, Maggie Thatcher–she earned it–is no longer able to conceive, but, dang it, she is STILL the Head Cow, very good at her job, and dam of the next Herd Sire, and the first person to suggest she should be sold to MacDonald’s may get wrapped in a cow skin and run through the auction barn. She still has an important job she does well, although it breaks our heart we didn’t get a Little Maggie out of her. She “should” have been good for several more calves, but these things happen. The one who may lose his job is Brutus, who appears to have decided that a piece of cow every other month is fine, while we prefer all of them to calve within a month or so of each other. Still, he throws gorgeous calves when he gets around to it: very high birth weight, inky black, marvelous conformation…Don’t even ask what he does in the even months because I have no idea. I don’t know. I just know that all the pregnancies except one are at 3, 5, 7, and 9 months. I was astounded his favorite isn’t with calf.

Oh, Lawdy! Imagine a Congressman sticking his hand way up inside a cow (arm’s length, basically) and feeling around for the head before announcing how far along the Education Department is and the condition of the Agriculture Department! And “palpating” for six bucks a head plus a trip fee. I haven’t forgotten the in excess of two mil/mo it took to shuffle Madame Pelosi back to her home in California every week to recover from the rigors of working three days.

I think I’m on to something: let’s go recruit Vets as candidates. Obviously, they don’t mind dirty jobs, they do them right, and they only charge all the traffic will bear. Either sort of vet will probably do fine.

My brother and I had a small disagreement recently (over whether or not to sell a joint asset; no, we’ll just divide it, and see which one of us laughs in the long run) and he sniped that running a small ranch is a “status symbol.” Wa’al…yeah, a little bit, sorta, but we do it for sheer joy and to keep our honor bright, since there are days when I think wistfully of feeding assorted hands and neighbors to th’ wild hawgs. We see it all, the good, the bad, the frustrating, and what can only be called “the endearing.” Yesterday a little Banty hen brought her new clutch of chicks out proudly to show them off and for “Chicken 101: How To Scratch For Bugs.” The tiny balls of fluff scratched industriously. It cracks me up that a hen-raised chick is always better than one that came out of an incubator; everybody needs a mother. Jelly Bean (her breeder likes candy names) got her new twins in the yard and grazed “casually” past my window because I hadn’t taken time to go out to the goat house yesterday to give the new borns their just due, shame on me–and I have to find time to tell Thunder “GOOD job!” (Done.) He stamped his superior genetics all over that pair, as always, as well he might. Pound for pound, he’s the most expensive male animal on the place. Daisy Mae, a red Nubian, is sporting twins who (except for flop ears instead of airplane ears) look just like their papa.

Sure, I’d like to be the modern equivalent of Captain King or the Duke of Duval (County) but it isn’t going to happen any time soon. It isn’t going to happen at all unless we get to TEOTWAWKI, in which case there will be a lot of ownerless land and stock.

Ah…remember a while back when I said I’d tell you when I thought it was (insider pun coming up) time to get in batteries? I’m racked and on safe (decocked, of course), and no, I can’t tell you any particular tipping point. Everything else is loaded but without a round up the spout. I’m talking about the 9 mil that resides on my desk, just above my mouse pad, until I go to bed, and then accompanies me. Now that I’ve thought about it, wouldn’t hurt to have a couple of long guns I keep in handy places ready to use. Supposing you don’t have very small children (too young to teach gun etiquette) in residence or visiting it can’t hurt. If I really get the wind up, I’ll tell you when I take the safety off. I’ve never liked safeties; I much prefer being ready to jack a cot’ridge into the chamber, but I’m not as strong as I used to be. Whoop of laughter…imagine needing to take out an “Allahu Akhbar” type and not knowing Arabic for, “Hold on a minute, I’m not ready, but surely Allah will like it better if you actually take a little risk here?” Rumbling sputters of mirth: as nearly as I can tell from their behavior, Allah doesn’t believe in giving the sucker a fair break. Or even care much if the Jihadist succeeds so long as he destroys himself messily.

If you really want to know the macroeconomic reasons I think so, go read my daily article at www.themeshreport.com — and why aren’t you doing so already, dear friends and readers? Chuckle…I believe in loading the dice in this instance, and how many comments we get is definitely one way we keep score. I keep up very carefully, and there is far too much emotion in the market, and my guess is that far more “good people” than is safe have picked up at best a few months’ food and a little silver. They aren’t paying attention to what Obama is saying, and even given that the man is an inveterate liar, I’m troubled by a very “Imperial” presidency, indeed.

I had a dream last night–and no, I don’t believe in dreams or horoscopes, tea leaves, or the I-Ching. It was one of “those” dreams, when you awaken and don’t dare move until you sort out where you are and whether or not it is true. I was younger, John was there, no Charles. There was a very large barracks built next to my house and I could see blank-eyed men in black sitting around tables, not talking or playing games, just…waiting. A knock on the door, loud, demanding, impatient. John went to deal with HS, and came back and said, bleakly, “This time I fobbed him off with a holster, but they’re coming for the guns. Soon.” He fell asleep on a sofa, and I could “feel” at least an expanded squad, probably a light company outside…and I froze. I couldn’t make a sound. I couldn’t blurt out anything to wake John up, not so much as a syllable. I do not “believe” in dreams. I do not. This one was so vivid, so real, so terrifying, though, that I pried my eyes open eventually, sat up, discovered I could speak, and read from three a.m. until dawn, lest I fall back into that nightmare. In a very different way, I “believe” in nightmares. Not the ones that haunt my sleep, but the ones that I read about on Townhall, White House press releases, NIA, and financial newsletters.

Linda Brady Traynham runs a ranch in Texas and writes for The Texas Ring.


Fortifying Yourself and Your Home Against Crime

April 18, 2011

by Chris Martenson

(Editor’s Note: Why a crime article on a secessionist website? Simple, dear readers. When the economy collapses, it will only be a matter of a few days before hungry, desperate people start committing crimes to find food and valuables. Daylight burglaries will be commonplace, and the frequency of armed robberies will also skyrocket. Either get prepared now against that day, or become a victim then. Your choice….)

In my first post on crime, I urged you to accept the reality of the criminal threat and to mentally choose not to allow yourself to be easily victimized. Hopefully, you’re reading this second post because you’ve sworn off the denial, distraction and passivity that characterizes most people and decided to do whatever you reasonably can to protect yourself, your family and your home. If this mindset of yours is authentic and deeply felt, you’re more than halfway to your goal.

Your next step is to form a self-protection plan. Helping you do that is the purpose of this second post. “Self-protection” is too large of a subject so I’ve narrowed it down to something you can reasonably take on in the near future: fortifying your home and yourself against crime. I’m going to focus on three types of crimes because your plans to defend against all three are closely related.

1. Burglary when your house is unoccupied.
2. Burglary when you are home.
3. Home invasion robbery.

Legal definitions vary from state to state, but in Pennsylvania burglary is defined as unauthorized entry into your home or other building (with or without the use of force) with the intent to commit a theft or a felony. Burglary is considered a property crime because the usual intent is to steal valuables that are not in the physical possession of another person. By contrast, robbery is stealing valuables from a person using or threatening to use force. Robbery is a violent crime against a person for the purpose of theft.

Most burglaries are intentionally committed when the criminal believes the house to be empty. Burglars want to avoid being confronted by a home’s occupants because they’re afraid of getting hurt by the homeowner or captured by the police. Most burglars are unarmed when they break in (except for a tool they might have used to force entry) because they have no intention of having to hurt someone to complete their crime and safely escape. This crime presents the least amount of physical danger to you, but it is by far the most common of the three. Whatever plan you come up with has to address this issue comprehensively. Fortunately, most of your plans to prevent burglary will be useful in your plans to deal with the next two crimes which are far less frequent, but far more dangerous to your physical safety. Check out this typical burglary story caught on video. The teenage burglars crawled in through a “pet door” on an exterior door, ignored the friendly pets (2 dogs, a cat, and a noisy bird), and ransacked the house (“so easy a caveman could do it!”). Atypically, the owner, who had been previously burglarized had set up a security camera in her house which she monitored live via the internet while she was at work. She saw the intruders, called police, and the two boys were arrested. It would have been a good idea to get rid of the pet door. Anyone want to bet these were the same two who burglarized her place the first time?

Try as they may to ensure that the houses they break in to are unoccupied, burglars sometimes break in to houses when someone is home or comes home during the crime. Even burglars who break in when they assume you are home (asleep), have every intention of getting in, stealing some valuables, and getting out undetected and unhurt. As you might imagine, this is a much more dangerous crime for anyone who is home at the time of the break in. Usually, the burglar will run away the moment he realizes someone is home, arrives home, or wakes up from their sleep. This is the best result for you, but you can’t count on it. Things can turn violent a number of different ways, and once they do there’s no telling how badly it will end. In the moment he realizes someone is home, the burglar may decide to use violence to succeed in taking valuables (even if he has never been violent before). Or he may decide to commit a different crime in addition to stealing valuables (rape, murder, kidnapping). Or he may feel trapped and use force simply to escape the house.

Home invasion robbery is a very violent and dangerous crime which is thankfully rare. Home invasion robberies are almost always committed by two or more criminals who are armed and quite willing to use any level of violence necessary to get what they want. Home invasion robbers intentionally plan to attack while you are home and to use violence to get you to give them what they want, even if it’s in a safe or a different location. Many home invasions involve murder or attempted murder, so as not to leave any witnesses. Criminals who commit these crimes are generally very experienced in crime and violence, and are tired of making off with small amounts of money and valuables in simple burglaries and convenience store stick-ups. Home invaders are looking for a big score which they have reason to believe you can deliver to them, and are willing to take the risks and use the violence necessary to succeed. Check out this NY Times piece about the brutal Petit family home invasion. As you read this account, note how easy it was for the criminals to gain access to the house, how unprepared the family was, how little crime this community normally experiences, how brutal the crime ended up being, and how true this saying is, “When seconds mean the difference between life and death, the police are just minutes away.”

Start with the easiest, most common threats to deal with and work your way up the threat scale as far as you can afford and believe is realistic in your situation. Develop a comprehensive plan and upgrade your defenses as conditions/events indicate.

The entry level is the common burglary described above. Burglars want something worth stealing, an empty house, low visibility while they’re making their entry, and easy access to the interior of your house. Your job is to deny them these things and frustrate them at every turn. (In a sense, your house has to be set up to defend itself while you’re away!) This is first and foremost a mind-game. You want to change the criminal’s mind about breaking in to your place. You want him to conclude there are plenty of other places that would be easier and more profitable for him to burglarize.

Your first goal is to make the burglar conclude breaking in to your place is not worth the payoff. If you drive a $60,000 car, wear a $5,000 wedding ring or watch, and live in a $500,000 house, you’re already at a disadvantage because you can’t hide these things. Any obvious signs of wealth (even living in certain zip codes!) attract burglars because they figure you have stuff laying around the house they can steal even if they don’t plan to steal the watch on your wrist. However, do whatever you can to conceal the cash and valuables you have in your house. If you have precious metals and cash at home you should keep that a closely guarded secret (i.e., only you and one other person, if possible). Guns should not be displayed, no matter how tastefully. Valuables should not be visible to someone who comes to your door, looks in your window, or stands and talks to you in your entryway. Valuables and safes should not be visible to teenagers and other visitors to your house, contractors doing work in your house, or to your landlord if you rent. Most burglars are males between the ages of 14-25, and have been in your place with your permission at an earlier date (or they know someone who has who has talked about it).

Your next objective is to do your best to make your house appear occupied even when it’s not. And remember that burglars don’t necessarily just look at your house once from across the street to decide whether it’s unoccupied. They listen for sounds (voices, TV). They observe patterns (garage door open or closed, mail or newspaper not brought in, snow not shoveled). They knock on the door or dial your phone number, and if you answer they come up with a reason for calling/knocking and move on to someone else’s place, or try yours again another time. They check your social networking site to see if you’re on vacation. They check the newspaper to discover who’s going to be at a wedding. Some of the guidance often offered includes: lights on timers, leave a TV on, have a neighbor pick up your mail while you’re away, etc.

If you can’t convince the burglar casing your house that it’s occupied, you want to make it appear too risky and difficult to get in undetected. You want to set up the exterior of your house to convince the potential burglar that there’s no way he can approach your house and work on gaining entry without being in plain view to neighbors, passersby and police on patrol. That means proper lighting (eg. motion detector activated lights on all sides of the house out of reach from the ground) and proper landscaping (is there any vegetation he could hide behind while gaining entry through a door or window?). A sign or signs advertising your alarm system and real or decoy security cameras are in this category, whether or not you have an actual alarm/camera system. The signs and cameras indicate two things to the burglar: 1) you’ve thought of burglary already and taken steps to prevent it, and 2) the alarm signs and cameras indicate “someone” is “watching” him even if you and your neighbors aren’t.

If the burglar decides you have valuables worth stealing, you aren’t home, and he won’t be noticed, your next line of defense is to make getting in to your house too loud, time-consuming, and difficult. Sadly, most burglars gain entry through 1) an unlocked door (eg. the Petit home invasion) or 2) an unlocked window. This is quick, silent and easy. Don’t make it so easy, people! The next most common point of entry is a locked door, which is much less secure than most people realize on a door that has not be properly fortified. Go to this site and watch how easy and quick it is to kick in the average door (I’m not selling this company’s products, just showing you how easy it is to kick in a locked door). In truly high crime areas, your doors and windows should be guarded by steel security doors and bars since normal doors and windows are simply too easy to defeat, even by amateurs.

Despite your best efforts, you have to plan for the possibility that a burglar will overcome all your efforts at prevention and succeed in breaking into your home/apartment while you are away. Now what? Well, don’t give up because here’s where the fun starts! Now your burglary alarm system should be tripped starting a countdown in the burglar’s mind about how long he has before the police and nosy neighbors start arriving. (I advocate real, monitored alarms, not just alarm signs). Most burglars stay in the target house for less than five minutes anyway, but a noisy alarm siren and the EVENTUAL arrival of the police is important to make sure he doesn’t overstay his welcome. The monitored alarm helps insure that the burglar won’t have the time to find your well-hidden valuables or crack open your safe, no matter what else he finds laying around in plain view in those few minutes. You should have a list kept in a safe place (like your safe) that itemizes all your valuables, including serial numbers and photos. You can engrave what the police call “owner applied numbers” on items that don’t have serial numbers, or in addition to them. Your home phone number is a good number to use. All of this helps with insurance reimbursement and in getting your stuff back if the police do make an apprehension. Oftentimes, a search warrant is served on a suspected burglar’s residence or car and many items are found which are suspected to be stolen. However, most of the time the items cannot be returned or additional charges placed on the suspect because there is no way to identify the owner of most stolen merchandise. You can get yours back by giving the police serial numbers, owner applied numbers and photos of valuables stolen when you initially report a crime.

I have barely scratched the surface of this subject and there is much additional research you must do to plan out your home’s defenses. Here are some sites to help you. These sites include checklists which you can use to perform a self-assessment and plan your upgrades.

* http://www.crimedoctor.com/
* http://www.statefarm.com/learning/be_safe/home/burglary/burglary.asp
* http://www.burglaryprevention.org/
* http://ferfal.blogspot.com/ This is Fernando Aguirre’s blog. “Ferfal,” as he is known, wrote Surviving The Economic Collapse about his experiences surviving the economic collapse in Argentina. You’ll find a great deal of wisdom gained through the school of hard knocks there, especially his 40+ posts regarding “home security.”
* http://dsc.discovery.com/fansites/ittakesathief/ittakesathief.html The Discovery Channel has an interesting series and website called “It Takes A Thief” in which average families agree to have two reformed burglars break into their homes and steal their belongings as a learning experience. (All damages are repaired, belongings returned, and the family receives a new alarm system and other security upgrades.) The episodes are highly motivating as they show how easy burglary is and how upsetting and expensive it is to residents.

I would be remiss not to emphasize how important it is for you to fortify yourself, not just your home. You (your mind, your disciplines, your skills) are the keys to keeping your home safe from burglary. Whatever you do and whatever upgrades you add to your residence, be disciplined and use whatever you’ve got diligently. I once responded to a report of a burglary at the Philadelphia home of a celebrity whose name you may know. This wealthy, well-known woman keeps a second home in Philadelphia and was the victim of a burglary there while she was out of state at her primary residence. The burglar broke a pane of glass in the garage door, and then reached in and pulled the cord that activated the garage door opener. He closed the garage door once inside and, in complete privacy, easily forced open the door from the garage to the residence. No burglar alarm was installed which would’ve called the police at that point. The burglar spent a lot of time searching for valuables, including cutting open couch cushions. The burglar tried to move the safe he found locked and secure in the bedroom but it was too heavy to move more than 3 inches. Then he found over $100,000 in jewelry and watches in a shoebox in the same bedroom with the safe, and left a happy man. To top it all off, there was no insurance to cover the loss! If you have locks, lock ‘em. If you have an alarm, activate it. If you have a safe, put your valuables in it. Don’t make it so easy on them, people! And whatever you do, stay alert and aware. If someone followed you home from the jewelry store or bank, would you notice? If someone was watching you and your house off and on for a week, would you notice? And if you noticed, would you take effective action? Would the burglar watching you get the distinct impression that you were watching him?

Now on to burglary while you are home. For this crime, you need all of the preparations you made for burglary while you are not home, plus some. Because of the increased risk of danger to you and your family from the burglar, some things you may have already done become more important and some new things come into focus.

First, it is critical for your safety that you get some kind of warning that an intrusion into your home has begun. The need to configure your perimeter, doors, and windows to slow the burglar down and force him to make noise is crucial. You need that warning and that time to respond, no matter what your response is going to be. It doesn’t do any good to have a “safe room” or a home defense firearm or a plan to run out the door screaming for help if the burglar gets in and gets to you before you can execute your plan. Fortified doors and windows, and an alarm system you have properly activated are the bare essentials to give you enough time to respond. Arrange your passive defenses to give you enough time to activate your plan, and be realistic. If you have a safe room or a firearm, test how long it would take you to get everybody into the safe room or actually deploy your gun in the worst case scenario (eg. when everyone is asleep). The longer it takes you to implement your plan, the more time you need from the moment you realize you’re getting burglarized until the moment you and the burglar are face to face. Most people are much too optimistic about how long it would take them to respond. (If you have to run to the bedroom closet to get your gun, unlock it, load it and run to the burglar’s entry point, your house has to be unusually slow and difficult to enter to give you that much time.) If you are unable or unwilling to use force to defend yourself in this situation, then your house must be that much stronger. You can’t afford to allow the burglar inside while you’re there because you’ll be completely at his mercy if his intentions include violence.

All TV commercials by companies selling burglary alarms contain wildly optimistic estimates of police response times. Even in Philadelphia which is densely populated and police are generally close by (even if they are already busy with other calls), response to burglary alarms runs into the four to five minute range at best, and to two or more hours at worst. Calls to 9-1-1 by residents stating someone has broken in and is still in the house, however, are almost always reached in less than three minutes. Suburban and rural response times are generally much, much longer, unless you’re very lucky and a Deputy or Trooper just happens to be close by when the call comes out. Don’t count on it! However, even three minutes is an eternity if you’re in your house with a burglar, and I urgently advise you to have a better plan than hiding and hoping until the police arrive. The advantage of having a firearm close at hand, and the skill to use it, is that you can deal with the worst case scenarios much better and without regard to what the police do.

There is also the issue of how our worsening economic problems are inevitably going to slow down police response times due to fewer police on the street. Watch this TV news report of two women and a child who waited 35 minutes for police to arrive while watching a burglar persistently trying and ultimately breaking in to their home. One of the women had to fight the man off with a vacuum cleaner (!!) just as the police arrived. It could’ve been much worse. What would you have done? What if the burglar intended to kill or hurt the occupants and he got in three minutes earlier?

Home invasion robbery is different from burglary because the robbers want you to be home and they’re not scared off by you or any weapons you might have. They plan to use threats, pain and, if necessary, torture to get you to open your safe, go to the bank and empty your account, or give up whatever it is they think you have. And, God help you, if they have the wrong address and think you’re a drug dealer with a stash of cash and drugs. That mistake is made by home invaders more than you might think, and it always ends badly for the residents because no amount of torture can make you tell robbers where your drugs and drug money are if you’re not a drug dealer! Home invasion robbers depend on the element of surprise, speed of action, and the willingness to use extreme violence to overcome anything they think you might do in self-defense.

The key in home invasion robberies is to deny the robbers entry into your home. Once they’re in it’s very unlikely anybody will come to your rescue because from the outside there won’t be anything suspicious to see or hear. The skill and intelligence of the robbers is important, but even an amateur home invader with below normal intelligence who is willing to use extreme violence will overcome most victims. Most people simply aren’t nearly prepared enough for this kind of crime, even committed by dummies. But since I expect our economic problems and diminishing law enforcement resources to worsen, I also expect this crime to become more common. So, in addition to taking everything above very seriously, I offer the following suggestions particularly to those of you who have enough wealth to make a you a potential target for home invasion.

* First, you must not allow yourself to be pounced upon by home invaders who are waiting for you to come home or to leave your home. Could someone follow you home, pull in behind you, pull a gun and demand entry into your house? Could robbers be waiting in hiding near your door and then pounce when you arrive/leave? Eliminate any hiding places on your property. Establish a perimeter fence or wall. Arm yourself and get the training necessary to adequately defend yourself. Decide in advance if you are outside confronted by home invaders and your loved ones are inside that you will die before letting them inside. Warn them any way you can, and don’t let the robbers in.
* Second, you must establish a way to “interview” people who knock on your door without letting them in or making yourself vulnerable to a “push in” once you open the door. The simplest method is to install a two way intercom system and arrange it so you can see the people outside while you talk to them. The second way is to install a heavy duty steel bar security door outside of your house’s door through which you can talk with and see anyone who comes to your door. The security door can be mounted just on the outside of your house door (like a flimsy screen door but much stronger). Or you can enclose your porch or entry way with security bars and a security door. This way you can talk to strangers pleasantly without fear of them rushing you and getting inside. Once the home invaders are inside, you’re way behind the curve.
* Third, firearms and the attendant skills are absolutely mandatory if you expect to be able to cope with a home invasion. This has been optional up to this point, but not with home invaders. The same is true of a top of the line alarm system which includes the capability to send a silent alarm to the police without the home invaders knowing about it. These panic alarms can be sent from the control pad by the entry door and from portable transmitters carried on your body. Ferfal deals with home invasion at great length in his book and blog. Since most Americans aren’t yet much concerned about this issue, I’ll direct you to him if you are one of the few who is and are wealthy enough to be a target. Of course, if our economic problems and moral decay continue in the direction we’ve been going, it will take less and less wealth to attract the attention of the more and more criminals willing to engage in this kind of crime.

Copyright © 2011 Chris Martenson


You Can’t Eat Gold

April 10, 2011

by Linda Brady Traynham

Actually, a few people do eat gold and silver after it has been pounded tissue-paper thin and used as a decorative touch on very costly confections. In general, however those screeching about “barbarous relics” are quite correct that we cannot eat gold. Where they err, as one would think obvious even to Keynesians and statists, is that we do not buy gold to eat, and even silver isn’t meant primarily as emergency rations.

The biggest fallacy is thinking that any of our investments other than freeze dried meals are intended for human consumption. We cannot eat share certificates of AT&T. We do not nibble on a new Mercedes, nor do we slice bonds up for sandwiches. Dividends from utility companies are not edible and stacks of hundred dollar bills have never been fried like potato chips to my knowledge.

Back to the beginning:

1. What is money? Money is anything we all agree has value, preferably something difficult to counterfeit, easy to store, that has passed the test of time as desirable to most people, most places, most of the time. It is a medium of exchange, an abstraction that makes it possible to work out the relative worth of chalk, cheese, Calamine lotion, and Coach footgear. It can be–and has been–items as odd as a bronze casting of a sheepskin which the Phoenicians agreed was “worth” twenty-five genuine sheepskins, beads carved laboriously out of quahog shells, and salt, from which our word “salary” is derived.

2. What is the purpose of money?

A. To prepare for the future, either to ensure that there are funds to live on after retirement or to accumulate start-up capital for a business.

B. To pay all bills and current living expenses.

C. Anything left over can be spent joyously or used to increase the amount put into A.

D. If you get enough of it, money is a fine way to gather power.

3. What is “fiat” currency? An artificial form of money, normally made of paper or metal, now created in digital form as well, whose value is dependent upon what we refer to with considerable scepticism as “the full faith and credit” of whoever printed or minted the stuff. The less trustworthy the issuing authority, the more unstable the fiat money and the less it buys as time continues.

4. Why do governments print money that is not backed by anything tangible? Because they can. Because printing money is a lot easier than honest ways to come by wealth. Because such currency illustrates the law of diminishing returns beautifully. It is worth a little less every time more is created, and each new issue benefits the first two or three to hold it (the federal government, the Fed, those who are bailed out, crooked politicians, union leaders, and so forth.)

5. “What is meant by ‘inflating our way out of our debts?’” The more there is of anything the less it is worth. When the government triples the supply of USD extant (not counting the splendid North Korean version) in less than a year, in theory all that additional cash will be spent on activities which bring in tax revenues (contemptuous snort; those are still way down) and this money will be spent to pay government debts, only it never is. The Feds admit the new money isn’t worth as much, speaking of repaying obligations with “cheaper dollars.” Other than it being a totally idiotic notion for our government to counterfeit money, the big problem is that only governments, assorted banks, congressmen, and their friends, unions, and drug dealers actually have more money. You and I don’t have any way to benefit from those “cheaper” dollars. We have the same salaries we did before, and what has actually transpired is that our money is worth less. It buys less. It doesn’t go as far. And that’s why you’re eating hotdogs and meatloaf instead of steak.

6. What can we do about this? Nothing. Well, we can wait for the entire system to collapse, which it will, and we can do our best to starve the tax beasts. That does not mean to evade your taxes because that can get you put in jail and you wouldn’t like it. Curtail your consumer spending. Buy as much as possible from friends, second hand, off Craig’s List, thrift stores, and any place else which does not involve sales taxes. Y’all know how I feel about damnyankees, but there is one saying I approve of: “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.”

7. How will it help if I cut my spending? Three ways, for sure. You won’t go further into debt, you won’t get a bunch of stuff you don’t need and will have to find storage or display room for, and you will hasten the time when even the tax-and-spend vote-buying crowd realizes that there simply isn’t enough money to pay for all their loony ideas. They’ll have to get tough and tell government employees they can’t retire at 50, they have to hold out until they’re 55…and never mind that ordinary people now have to be 67 1/2 to draw Social Security. Congress can do to themselves and federal employees what they did to the military: cut our “guaranteed” retirement income by 20%. Nobody knows better than former military that government promises are written on water. Congress gave itself a raise of over 5% this year, and declared a three-year moratorium on COLA for old folks, while raising fees for mandatory medicare. Oh…and if you didn’t know, your W-2 next year will list the “value” of your health insurance plan as income, so you can pay tax on it. Won’t that be fun? Medicare costs me over a hundred dollars a month. Last year it cost me over $400 every time I saw a doctor (I need one only rarely), and now they’re going to tax this benefit I didn’t want in the first place. Medicare doesn’t cover glasses, which I do need, or dentists, which we all need. Many of you are paying around a thousand a month (in salary you don’t get) for your health insurance plans, and if Obamacare isn’t cut down by the courts your mandatory coverage is going to cost a lot more than that, taxable.

8. Rule: it is easier to curtail spending than it is to raise income. To determine the true cost of anything, add 50%, because that supposes that you lost a third of your income to taxes in the first place, a gross underestimate. Next year the rate will increase to 39%, plus sales tax, and possibly plus a VAT, goody glee. Sweden, here we come. My first suggestion is to forego things we have all come to regard as “normal,” yet the world lived without for millennia. For example, premium channels on your cable bill. Better yet, cancel the service entirely. You can get better news and weather off the Internet, and probably get a couple of local channels for free. Take a good hard look at your cellular ‘phone bill, and your land line bill. Sure, it is convenient to be able to call every member of the family, and your teenagers will insist you are ruining their social lives if they can’t text, but they will adjust. It’s a novel notion, but you can all read library books or play Monopoly, Cribbage, or Bridge. Work in the garden you should be growing. Cut fast food out of your lives; those expensive calories are very poor nutritional and taste value.

9. Start a war chest with what you save. Use it to stock up on food and things you could use for barter, such as coffee, whether you drink it or not. I’m a hard core Doom & Gloom type, and I think we are going to see very hard times. One of the provisions in the Food “Safety” Act allows the government to confiscate all the food in your home or in any given geographical area, so I suggest caching at least a couple of months’ worth where it won’t be easy to find. No, that is not illegal NOW. “If” things go bad, the new money will be food and survival supplies; no one with any sense will accept Federal Reserve Notes for beans, bullets, or Bandaids. Stock up on other people’s vices. I, for example, cannot abide the taste of coffee, but much of the world feels it can’t start the day without it. Every time I see coffee on sale I buy it, and the price will rise as a crisis spreads and lengthens. Sell it by the can? Oh, no, indeed. Mine will be for sale by the measure, and if I’m feeling generous it will cost an ounce of silver for enough to make two pots. Your neighbors will rediscover old substitutes such as chickory, roasted acorns, and burned bread crumbs, all of which apparently taste as good as they sound. Tea, hot cocoa packets, popcorn, and dried fruit will be highly desirable.

10. Let us suppose that there is a breakdown in the food supply and distribution network, and throw in at least a curfew if not martial law. Then what is money? “Money” will be whatever you have that someone else will trade you what you want for it. Expect to discover the hard way how little diamonds are worth in such situations. As noted, you can’t eat gold; all gold is good for is storing excess value you hope to start over again with once the bad times are through. During the gold rush in Alaska the price of an egg was one dollar–the same dollar that paid a cow hand in Texas for a day’s work. When all you have is all there may be for a considerable time, would you sell a package of toilet paper or a box of Bisquick for three times what it costs now in dollars? I certainly hope not! You can’t eat dollars, Euros, or renmimbi. A classic trade good you can pick up inexpensively now is ordinary soap of any kind–bar soap, dishwashing liquid, laundry detergent, shampoo. A bar of soap caused riots among German ladies in WWII. Forget the nylon stockings! Those were good for a pretty girl’s time, but the hausfrau wanted her seife. I would have a nervous breakdown without at least plenty of legal pads and boxes of good gel pens, because we may well lose either power or the Internet or both. Your fancy new SUV? Valueless when there is little or no gasoline and no place to go if you have some. The stores will be empty. Salt. Plain, old, ordinary, much-maligned Morton’s iodized salt. You’ll die without it, you know. Salt is also good for preserving food, and what are your plans if the power goes out for days and you have a freezer full of meat? Unless you have a grill and plenty of charcoal or a wood stove, your two choices will be to pull out the recipe you printed out ahead of time and “corn” beef, or to pull off a couple of screens, slice the meat thinly, diagonally across the grain, and make jerky. If you sandwich the meat between the washed screens you’ll keep most of the flies off of it. If you have advanced warning jerky can be made in the oven (set at about 200 degrees), in a dehydrator, or in an ordinary cardboard box with a 100 watt light bulb hanging in it. Money is a medium of exchange, and if want and famine stalk the land jerky will be a very fine form of money. If you invest now in at least an 1800 watt grinder and sausage stuffer (don’t forget casings and seasoning) you can make and smoke sausage.

11. Hand lotion might be useful as a trade good. Ladies who are washing clothes and dishes by hand will be glad to have it–and do buy a couple of enormous boxes of rubber gloves. If the very worst happens we may face some very unpleasant jobs, or even have to bury cholera or typhoid victims. A case of Chapstick, all the matches you can get your hands on, small dollar store sewing kits, candles…ordinary, every day things now, but anything you would take on a camping trip will make excellent “money,” including books.

12. What is the value of a can of cat food when kitty says indignantly, “Mao?!” I will go hungry before our three enormous rescue dogs do, but in times of siege and famine cats, dogs, and small rodents disappear rapidly, and isn’t that a jolly thought?

13. Hit the Good Will and pick up sturdy old sweat suits, jackets, and blankets. If you don’t need them yourself, those less prepared than you are will pay top “dollar” for them. Buy woodland or jungle camouflage fatigues (now called “BDU’s) just in case you have to hide out in the woods for a while. A good old fashioned cast iron skillet and a non-electric drip or percolator coffee pot…dollar store Ibuprofin, flyswatters, toothpaste…if you don’t think toothpaste and even a cheap new toothbrush will be luxuries, you haven’t done your homework, and you haven’t considered how very disorganized and unprepared most of the populace is for a major disaster. You can buy good knives inexpensively…now. I think I’ll buy a hundred next time I find some I like for a dollar, because they’re out there.

14. The bottom line is that if the dollar crashes or is devalued “money” will be food, survival necessities, and things you buy now without thought. A tube of lipstick, spare batteries for your child’s iPod, containers for gasoline and water, lots of plastic bags, zippable or twist tie, tinfoil, razor blades, space blankets (currently about three bucks at Gander Mountain), vinegar, bleach, cough drops, birth control devices/products, fish hooks, hand crank can openers, pony tail gizzes, aloe vera gel (good for burns, stings, sunburn), inexpensive New Testaments, anything that would add a little comfort to life.

My system isn’t so much to shop by list as to shop by what is on sale. Over time–and I started four and a half years ago–it all evens out. If what’s on sale 10/$10 is pineapple rings, buy those. Buy anything reasonable that is a form of vitamin C, including the powder or tablets. Scurvy is a horrible way to die, and it didn’t just happen to sailors with Sir Francis Drake. When citrus fruit no longer comes from Hawaii, Florida, and the Rio Grande Valley where do you propose to buy lemons, oranges, and limes? (My plan was to grow my own. Thus far the goats have eaten seven six-foot lemon trees, ripe fruit, blossoms, buds, leaves, and all. Goats will eat ripe jalapenos and just look interested in some more while finishing the leaves. If you have a fireplace, stock up on firewood.)

Haunt Craig’s List and see what is going for well under market value. Two years ago we bought motor homes and travel trailers between $50 and $100/running foot. You can live in one of those if you have to, and you can store your emergency supplies in one, and if you ever have to “bug out” you can be on the road fast. Right now horses are cheap, and we’re planning on picking up a couple more.

When you see something you like and use that stores well–be it brownie mixes, Bush’s Baked Beans, or asparagus–on sale buy at least two or three cases. You may never see it at a good price again. My biggest mistake, early on, was finding 16 oz. cans of cooked mackerel for a dollar. I’m not fond of fish, so I only bought ten cans. That’s an awful lot of protein for the money, and it may come to pass that we aren’t going to be nearly as picky. Has anyone else noticed that not only is tuna sky high but you can’t get it packed in oil anymore? That in water deteriorates faster and has less flavor. Don’t think “That’s enough for now,” something men tend to say. No, it isn’t. Get all you can afford of what is on sale every time it meets the criteria of food value and palatability. DO stock up on whatever your family loves; in our case there are three of us who are crazy about smoked oysters! Those won’t be a popular trade good (although people are going to be craving fats) but we don’t care since we plan on eating all of them ourselves. If you have a cool room or root cellar pick up things that could go rancid–peanut butter, olive oil, safflower oil, even Velveeta will keep a long time if just kept cool. Butter freezes beautifully. Did you know that you can starve to death camping by a trout stream where the fish all but jump in your pan because they are so lean? Your body NEEDS two tablespoons of mixed safflower and peanut oil a day for what are known as “essential fatty acids” because they are necessary for good health.

Spices and condiments! Boredom is going to be a big factor, and I have never understood the Mormon passion for stocking vast amounts of flour, milk, and honey since I don’t know anything to do with them other than make bread and sour dough pancakes. I read today that the “emergency grain reserves” in the US are sufficient to provide every, um, “citizen” doesn’t work…resident with half a loaf of brread. Not good. Not good at all. Learn to use sour dough, but buy plenty of yeast, too. I really like that idea; if you could set up and guard a small stand, you might do a roaring business in flour, sour dough starter, and a basic recipe leaflet. In the old West cowboys would ride a hundred miles to find a lady who could make “bear sign,” known to us as donuts. Laughter…a very expensive government study showed that what men really like us to smell like is a combination of donuts and pumpkin pie! Grandma knew what she was doing when she dabbed a little vanilla behind her ears.

We’re spoiled, people, and we may have to make compromises we aren’t going to like at all. The Dutch, who know at least as much about cheese as anyone, insist that cheese isn’t fit to eat until it starts to mold. Cut the blue-green parts off and eat the rest. The blue and gray molds are harmless; if you ever get pink in your sourdough starter, throw it out. If meat gets slimy or green, feed it to the dogs or the hogs, who won’t mind and won’t get sick.

What it comes down to is that some of us expect a period during which “money” is commodities and consumer goods. If we’re wrong, you can use what you buy over at least half a dozen years. “Expiration dates” are just another Liberal ploy to destroy wealth. If it doesn’t smell bad and the can isn’t bulging (neither of which I have ever seen,) simmer it a while and eat it. A friend who went all out for Y2K is just now finishing up his stockpiles, and all he lost was a few cans of tomato sauce. I solved that problem by buying spaghetti sauce (when it was a dollar a quart.) The taste isn’t quite as good, but it comes in reusable glass jars instead of cans it can eat through, and can be used in many ways, such as pizza, stew, and soup.

My last word of advice is to consider what you find most desirable, what you think others will want to trade for, and what you are willing to accept in return. If you have more than ample food for a year AND can restrain your pity, compassion, and generous impulses, you can consider swapping for gold or silver, but I wouldn’t cut it any finer than that. Sure, it would be pleasant to sell your bargains at very high prices, but you really can’t eat gold, silver, diamonds, cars, furs or even land, the only thing I’m willing to trade for. The funds we put in precious metals are our start-up capital when sanity returns. FIRST we have to get through the crash, and during that time “money” will be food, fuel, medicine, and the ordinary needs of life, including water. So buy a good water filter.

What bothers me most is how few Americans are likely to have a secluded spot where you can raise a garden, at least a few chickens, and a dairy goat or cow. I will continue to hold, unless events prove me wrong, that the coming luxury is sustainable supplies of food and energy and the ability to protect them. Most Americans, a recent study shows, couldn’t last a month on the food they have in their houses–and that supposes the government doesn’t confiscate it and bands of thieves don’t break in. The other thing that bothers me is how many of our readers I have come to hold in admiration and affection, men and women of character and skills I would consider “worth feeding” for what you would add to a prepper colony…but all of you live too far away! You know who you are.

Linda Brady Traynham writes for The Texas Ring and is a favorite contributor to DumpDC.


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