By: Tom Chatham
When we talk of our standard of living most people equate that to all of the stuff and the money that they have. They feel that the more of each they have the better they are doing. Unfortunately for most, the last few decades have seen an artificial prosperity in the U.S. with an artificial standard of living. The standard they think they have is propped up by massive amounts of fiat money that can and will evaporate soon.
We have been brought to this point by irresponsible policies created by irresponsible people that seek only to enrich themselves at the expense of the masses. Many Americans have massive amounts of mortgage debt, automobile debt, credit card debt, student loan debt, business debt, medical debt and/or recreational equipment debt.
When the money ends and the people can no longer pay for the things that make up their standard of living, they will lose most of those things and be left with a lot of cheap trinkets made in China, many of which are probably broken already, to signify their standard of living.
When the artificial standard of living collapses into the real standard of living that most will end up with, there will be a lot of denial then a lot of anger. This will be a dangerous time for everyone, especially those that made prudent decisions most of their lives and lived within their means and will still have most of their wealth in tact when it’s over.
The envy that the political left has sown will reap a deadly harvest when this false paradigm ends. Politicians on the left and right are responsible for this mess but it is the social tension from the left that will cause much violence. People that have grown up in a system that taught them they are entitled to a certain standard of living will become violent when the things they were promised are taken away without warning.
Those that have spent wisely over the years and lived within or below their means will remain solvent while others sink in the ocean of debt they have set sail on. Many will not go gently into that good night and will strike out at anyone that they feel has more than their fair share of stuff when everything falls apart. This is the reason many have a plan to leave for more tranquil waters when the going starts to get bad. For those that have made the hard decisions and remain solvent, the coming chaos is a foregone conclusion and they are prepared for that. But what of those that only now realize the danger and seek to prepare for it?
If you now realize that your standard of living is about to take a drastic plunge it may still be possible to cushion the fall for your family but some drastic decisions will need to be made. When you see an accident about to happen, the actions you take determine whether you get a bruise, a broken arm or are killed outright. Your actions need to represent who you are and the situation you are currently living in.
In a serious crisis the things that are important are water, food, shelter, clothing, security, medical, transportation and communication. Sanitation is also critical for well being but for brevity we will assume that your shelter will cover that aspect. In day to day living the four things needed are food, water, shelter and clothing. These are the things most people will struggle to provide for their families so these are the things you will need to place emphasis on if you are behind the preparation curve at this point. The other items are not less important but will depend on your location and situation as to their need. Once you can provide the basics to your family then the other items will become necessary.
For someone living in the suburbs or urban area with a job and few survival type skills, it would likely be necessary to store some of your wealth in a form you can use later to care for your family. This may take the form of food, gold, silver, diamonds or some other durable wealth preserving tool. The idea for this type of individual is to have the means to provide food, shelter and clothing during hard times. Since this type of individual may have very few skills to fall back on to produce these items themselves they would need a medium of exchange to trade for those things for the duration of the crisis. That does not mean this type of person should not seek education to provide these items themselves but given certain time constraints it may not be possible short term. An individual in this situation needs to have a plan to deal with these conditions utilizing the resources available to them at this time. A portable form of wealth may be the only option if relocation is required due to a deteriorating situation in the cities and/or your primary shelter is lost.
An individual living in the country may have more opportunity to provide the basics for their family depending on their location and the resources available in the local community. The basics still hold true though for the rural individual. For this person the skills available may make up for lack of financial means to store wealth for future use. This person will still need food, water, shelter and clothing as a minimum for their family but they may be able to provide those things by different means than their city cousins. The availability of open ground to grow food and the availability of water on site in most places may decrease the need to seek out these resources for day to day living allowing more time to be spent on acquisition of shelter and clothing.
In The American Dream Lost I cover one strategy that can work for most average families and can be summed up as follows.
Purchase a good used RV or camper trailer for shelter.
Purchase two sets of new clothing for each person to be stored in shelter.
Purchase food to provide a minimum of two meals a day for a year.
Buy a shotgun and ammo.
Buy $30 face value in junk silver coins for emergency use.
These things can be bought today for under $6,000 and much less with some shopping around. They can mean the difference between becoming destitute and helpless or being able to live with a good quality of life. Measures should be taken to prevent the loss of this backup system in the event you must declare bankruptcy and lose everything when the system collapses. Unless a mad max scenario happens very fast, anything you do not own free and clear may be lost in due time by foreclosure. Above all if you decide to implement a plan like this or some other the most important thing to remember is not to wait until you have no resources left before you try to enact the plan. Most people try to run things out until the last minute and all resources are used up hoping things will change and the life they are accustomed to will be saved somehow. That is a plan for disaster in the current environment and is very dangerous for you and your family to depend on. You must set aside resources for the plan you devise and be prepared to activate it when nothing else can be done. That is a mental leap you must be prepared to take when the time comes.
A good quality of life should not be confused with all of the consumer things you now have and feel necessary to function every day. Some of the best things in life are free and this is the thing you must mentally prepare your family for the most. A collapse of our living standard will require everyone to adjust to the new reality and those that do not make the transition will cause a great many problems for the rest. One of the biggest problems we face are those that cannot or will not adjust and this is where the greatest danger lies in society when the system breaks down.
By: Tom Chatham
For those that are preparing for the worst in economic terms there are always the decisions of what to get now and what to get later. Your current economic situation may only allow you the option of buying necessary equipment and supplies at a slow pace. Primary items that you should buy first are food, water, fuel, clothing, household and sanitation supplies and if possible some type of shelter, either a primary structure or an alternative shelter you fully own. Only after taking care of these necessities should you put some of your money into silver or gold for wealth preservation. After these items you will want to acquire any large items you think you will need. If you cannot afford all of the items now that you feel you will ultimately need what are your options?
There is one option that while not perfect or guaranteed may work to your advantage in the near future.
When an economic collapse begins it will likely happen slowly over a matter of weeks or months. As paper assets are destroyed deflation will occur in some areas while inflation will occur in others. The things that are likely to see inflation immediately are those things that people cannot live without like food, water, fuel and clothing. Those things that can preserve wealth such as precious metals are items you should already have in your possession before the bottom drops out of the economy.
Those holding hard assets not considered wealth preserving but more like consumer goods will be liquidating those items to acquire inflating assets they must have like food. For those that have a store of wealth that can be liquidated and used to purchase other hard assets it could be a good time to leverage your limited wealth to acquire those items you could not afford before.
When paper assets begin to fail those that are holding mainly paper will rush to get into hard assets like gold and silver to preserve their wealth. This will rapidly bid up the price of these assets due to their very limited availability. The price of precious metals should appreciate much faster than inflation. Eventually gold and silver will go into a bubble before they drop a significant amount. This grey area between the metals inflated price and the actual inflation rate will give you extra buying power for a short period of time. This is the economic sweet spot. You may elect to liquidate some of your metals at this time to purchase other hard assets you are in need of but were unable to afford earlier.
Any prolonged economic collapse will make many goods hard or impossible to find as time goes on so buying in this grey area will assure you have what you need and at a price you can now afford. As the collapse gathers speed, those that cannot buy metals will shift into other types of hard assets just to be out of paper so you must act before this happens.
What type of hard assets will you likely be looking for? Things like tools, machinery, livestock, land and equipment you will need to care for your family longterm. These are the expensive items you may not be able to afford now but want for longterm viability. While it is best to get them now you may not be able to so a plan such as this may be your only hope. If this situation does not appear for you to take advantage of you will still have some precious metals to barter with at a later date and possibly acquire some of the things you need.
So for those needing to make large capitol purchases but lacking sufficient funds at this time, holding your funds in precious metals may be the best plan. Gold is good but silver may see the most increase over this period and is much easier for individuals with limited funds to accumulate. When trying to gage the market to get the most from your assets, don’t try to liquidate at the top of the market because you are likely to miss it. If you can get within ten percent of the top you have done well so don’t push your luck and try to squeeze out the last little bit. This will allow you to sell some of your PMs and get what you need before the prices begin to decline and panic sets in.
While not perfect this opportunity will allow you the possibility to get things that will be more important to you than precious metals as the crisis unfolds. There are no guarantees for the future so each person must decide for themselves how best to use their limited assets.
By: Tom Chatham
It is becoming a foregone conclusion that Cyprus was just the beginning of the new bail-in plan taking root in the world of finance. The mentality of the banking industry is that they will continue with their machinations as long as people are dumb enough to go along. The majority of Americans still live under the assumption that their bank accounts are safe and any loss will be covered by FDIC. Like a thief in the night the banking industry has changed the rules allowing the theft of bank deposits in such a way that FDIC insurance will not kick in to reimburse depositors. Many banks have sent their customers revised banking agreements in the last several months knowing that most never read these statements and throw them away. These new policies will not become known to most people until it is too late for them to protect themselves.
The banking industry is setting the stage for massive wealth destruction brought on by their massive misappropriation of funds. The bankers will walk away with their golden parachutes and massive bonuses while the ordinary citizen pays for it all. Credit markets will be destroyed and massive wealth in the form of savings will be destroyed leaving people a bleak future with many unknowns.
Even massive wealth destruction might be a recoverable event and new prosperity assured as long as hard assets survive the collapse. If the coming destruction were an accident that might be possible but the approaching destruction is organized and well planned. If that is true is it impossible to think that complete destruction of privately held assets is not the ultimate goal. Paper assets are the most readily available wealth but far from the only significant wealth in private hands.
Private property is the foundation of much of the wealth in the U.S. and the recent real estate scandals by TBTF banks gives us a look at a possible future. Much of the property held in America has a mortgage on it and would be easily foreclosed on by banks if the financial sector locked up in response to bail-ins and triggered foreclosures.
A sudden devaluation of currency could also cause default if debts were not indexed. An even sinister aspect of this is the fact that Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac underwrite most of the mortgage debt. A TBTF bank could easily foreclose and pass the property on to the government, after taking a sufficient handling fee of course. This would place much of the private property in the U.S. in government hands. Increased property taxes in the name of social justice would take care of the rest of the wholly owned properties.
In a world where there is rule of law this would be unthinkable but the rules are being rewritten almost daily now and it is only a matter of time before the unthinkable happens. Why would government want to deprive citizens of privately owned property?
Even with the destruction of wealth private property provides people the ability to be self sufficient and care for themselves. This places them outside of much of the governments control and control is the purpose of government today. Because of this private property must be eliminated along with private wealth. The nature of current events leads one in this direction and to ignore the potential of this possibility is to surrender any future prosperity sought by society.
He who controls money, controls commerce but he who controls property controls everything else including freedom.
By: Tom Chatham
Stock market gurus and central bankers are always eager to tell anyone who will listen that they have all the answers and know how to create prosperity. In their eyes, prosperity is something that can be created out of thin air with the proper knowledge which they are privy to. This miracle of economics could also be called something for nothing. The greed of men makes this prospect particularly enticing. All honest people know there is no such thing as something for nothing. Everything in life has a price and that price will be paid at some point by some means or someone. It is this greed that has caused society to want the easy path to prosperity. Why work hard all your life and end up with very little when you can have everything the easy way. This is something the money printers and speculators have learned to capitalize on to get rich themselves the easy way. These people have found a way to use society’s tendencies against them. It is known as crony capitalism.
Free market capitalism involves the production of goods or services that are sold to society at a price the market is willing to pay. Society is the free market and will dictate the rate it is willing to pay based on supply and demand fundamentals. Supply is based on the availability of natural resources needed to produce the goods society wants. Prosperity in a free market can only occur as fast as natural resources can be developed therefore natural resources act as a governor to prevent society from living beyond its means. This acts to prevent inflation and debt from rising too fast. These forces allow society to prosper at a slow steady pace that is sustainable as long as the natural resources are available in sufficient quantities and can be extracted to meet supply. This means excess production can be stored for future use by workers because the excess production is held in hard assets.
Crony capitalism is the ability to pull forward prosperity and utilize the potential value of future production now by means of speculation and money printing. It causes the market to signal a false prosperity caused by the misallocation of resources and false signals indicating increases in available natural resources. Those that are behind the speculation and money printing enable a system that provides them the use of future prosperity today at the detriment of society tomorrow. The false prosperity brought into the market is no longer based on developed natural resources but debt secured by future prosperity that will never occur. As currently available natural resources are used by those utilizing crony capitalism fundamentals, the producers in society that save current production, in the form of paper assets manufactured by the money printers, will one day seek to cash in their saved production for hard assets consisting of natural resources. When the day arrives that no natural resources are available for the conversion of paper assets, the system will cease to function. At that point all paper assets will be destroyed by supply and demand fundamentals that society injects and free markets will seek to rebalance all previous misallocation. This will happen by destruction of paper assets that were never backed by hard assets. The destruction of paper assets will be proportional to the amount of natural resources that do not exist in the markets. This means that those that hold paper assets at this time will lose all of their stored production. Crony capitalism is a way for money printers and speculators to utilize the excess production of workers now while depriving them of their saved production later. To put it simply, crony capitalism is the organized theft of society’s excess production in a way that most do not and will not understand which is why it is so effective.
Governments that engage in money printing and deficit spending are only able to do so because large portions of society save their excess production in paper assets. This allows the government to utilize natural resources that should be allocated to these savers. When paper assets begin to collapse due to lack of hard assets those that are able to convert some of their paper will find prices inflating at an ever increasing rate and they will lose a certain percentage of their saved production as a result. Those that are too late in converting their saved production will lose much or all of it. This is what is meant when people talk of investors heading for the exits.
There is increased talk by some that capitalism has failed but this is misdirection by those that know the truth. Free market capitalism has not been practiced in many years and those that thrive on crony capitalism must blame the ultimate destruction of paper assets on free market capitalism to hide a falsehood sold to the masses that will lose everything they have worked for. The only places you can find true free market capitalism today is in small communities scattered across the nation where barter and precious metals are utilized.
Any savings instruments that are not backed by hard assets are merely promises waiting to be broken. In the near future there will be many broken promises and hopefully society will survive to remember a hard lesson. The worst thing that could happen is that society is manipulated to believe in another system based on lies and promises. Free market capitalism must once again be ingrained into society to prevent future crisis. Unfortunately, many people do not learn from their mistakes until enough pain is incurred and a failure of fiat currency will inflict a massive amount of pain that society will remember for a very long time.
A smart man learns from his mistakes. A genius learns from other peoples mistakes.
By: Tom Chatham
One of the problems with the credit industry that we have is the fact that you often pay twice or even three times for the object you want to get. Many people do not take the time to calculate the true cost of the things they buy on credit or simply do not care. They want it now and are content to overpay for it as a result.
Another symptom of the society we now have is the demand for cheap products that only last a few years and seem to self destruct. Repairable metal has given way to disposable plastic and solid wood has given way to pressboard. The era of planned obsolescence has taken its toll on our society and we are poorer as a society as a result.
If you go around in life paying twice as much for everything you get and end up with inferior products that do not last, how can you expect anything but to be poorer. This is a fact that seems lost on the new disposable, must have the latest edition generation. Over the years the forgotten frugal ways of the past offer those in this collapsing financial situation we find ourselves in a way out if they choose.
When you are young you want to have the newest and most fashionable items available because things have become status symbols to our society. To have something old or out of date is repulsive to some. This is the mindset we have been programmed with by those who profit from our impulsive buying habits. We as a people must reprogram ourselves to regain the upper hand and free ourselves from this economic system we have created. We must reprogram ourselves to look upon objects that we use in a functional way rather than a fashionable way.
As I sit here and write this article I do so on my Dell laptop circa 2004 that still serves me well. I purchased an old rocking chair recently made of thick solid wood that cost me all of $25, a chair that would sell for over $100 if bought new today. My want of a good lamp led me to the purchase of an old Aladdin Lincoln Drape lamp for $50 which would have cost me over $150 if bought new. To get the most from the money you work so hard for, you must leverage it in a way that increases your net worth and supplies you with the items that provide the needed function. By doing this you will come ahead faster and with less money and that is crucial in tough economic times.
When you need a lamp, find a used one that you like that will last a lifetime or at least can be repaired if it breaks. Good quality used furniture can be found in many places today that provide the function you need at a cheaper price and much of it is built to last a lifetime. When you prepare to buy a large durable item you should look at it and determine if it is something that you could use and then hand down to the next generation.
Sometimes it is necessary to purchase new but you should always analyze the item for price and durability before making your decision. If it is not possible to buy a new item that you want due to price that is when you should search for good used items that are affordable and durable. By taking this approach you will increase your net worth by paying less and getting better items that will last. If you only have to buy furniture for your home one time in your life, that will save you a lot of money in the long run. If you only buy a car every ten or twenty years and get a used one at that, it will save you thousands that you may not have or can use for other things that you need. This is how you can come ahead in life much faster and with fewer worries and headaches that will keep you awake at night.
We are now in a situation that many younger people should take advantage of to insure a good quality of life in the years to come. Many of those from the older generations are retiring and down sizing their homes. Many of these people bought quality American products to furnish their homes when they were starting their families in the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. These items are now starting to flow into the used market and those that want quality for a fraction of the price now have a golden opportunity.
One of the greatest stumbling blocks is the programming of the newer generation. Those in the know about what I am saying need to make an effort to educate the next generation before it is too late. If you have children in college and want to help them get a good start in life then why not buy them some good used furniture to give them a helping hand. If things continue to deteriorate that used durable furniture may be all they have to use for many years to come and they will eventually come to appreciate it.
I’ve said before that if you were to go back in time and find yourself living in the 1950’s you might not have all of the technology we have today but you would have a good quality of life even with that old technology and the products they had then. These older products should be a foundation you build on to insure a good quality of life while you work to improve your position. Some of these products are also a good way to store excess wealth until later.
With the decaying economic system we are faced with, it is up to each of us to make the best of what we have, and what we have will likely decrease with the years. By getting the most from our spending dollars we will be in a better position to weather the storm. While you may be able to buy more cheap stuff short term, if it does not last, you will be right back where you started from except without the funds you wasted. It is not always possible to buy the best quality but it should be a top priority when possible and buying used can help you with this. Quality is not expensive, it’s priceless.
By: Tom Chatham
The people that have an understanding of the current financial situation have already begun their plans to stay solvent and provide for their families. They have stored food and seeds, bought some silver or gold coins and looked into alternative sources of power and energy for their homes. These are the logical starting points, but is it enough?
With the downturn in the economy many are doing the best they can to prepare but smaller paychecks, higher taxes and rising prices are making it difficult to stay ahead of the growing problems in the world. Even though you may have a limited amount of money, you need a long range plan to get through the potential troubles ahead.
The best way to navigate economic troubles is to be as free from the economic system as possible. This means you must be able to provide as many of your own goods and infrastructure as possible to limit the needed financial resources you have available. The act of building a self sufficient homestead is a large and often expensive task. It is beyond the ability of most to do it in a short period of time.
For those that see the need for self sufficiency but lack the financial resources, a long range plan must be devised to get you there. In devising a plan you must decide what resources are critical and which are the most readily attainable with the financial resources you have.
A raw piece of land that you can grow food on and build a structure from locally available materials is a critical piece of the plan but you may lack the financial resources at this time to buy what you need. You must look at your financial ability to buy this piece of land and determine how long it will take you to save up to get it. You want to buy it in full with no debt obligations which will make it more difficult.
After determining how long this will take, you must decide if the length of time will leave you vulnerable to economic shocks while saving this money and what the best use of your money short term would be. If it will take you several years to save up the needed money for purchase, some of your funds may be better spent short term on infrastructure to equip your homestead when you finally get it.
The purchase of gardening tools, grain mills, canning supplies, alternate energy systems, carpentry tools and production equipment may offer you more for your money now if prices are rising fast. The stocking of materials you will need later is one way to beat inflation. This must be done as part of a well thought out plan though to insure your goal of purchasing property is not undermined.
Many of these items are useful even if you do not have your own property yet so you will be able to get some use from them and even save some money as a result to put towards your land. If you grind wheat you buy in bulk and can as much as you can from a kitchen garden, it can do a great deal for your cash flow. A wood stove that you can use now and relocate later to your new property can be a good investment. Something as simple as collecting tree limbs from around your yard during the year and from your neighbors providing free fuel may allow you to use much less fuel or electricity during the winter allowing you to put that savings toward your property.
The purchase of production equipment will detract from your land fund but the ability to use that equipment now may allow you to save as much or even more to put into that fund. This will provide a compounding effect if planned well that can see you to your goals even sooner.
You may decide getting some livestock is advantageous. A few pullets and a rooster are easy enough to care for and once moved to your new property you have the capability to hatch more chicks and expand your flock with little expense. The same can be said for pigs. Buying a pair of piglets cheaply several months before you move will provide you with the ability to expand your hog numbers shortly after arriving at your new homestead providing a good source of extra cash. A livestock operation can be expanded very economically once the breeding animals are obtained.
This is the value of having a well thought out plan. It will help you determine what you can purchase now and what financial savings and impact it will have. A good plan is the key to economic security and your future happiness. While you accumulate your tools, you may want to study the economic situation and determine the best method to preserve your savings until you buy your property. If it will take you several years to save enough, during that time high inflation may rob you of a lot of your purchasing power.
You may decide it is best to store this money in gold or silver until it is needed for the purchase. As long as the government continues to print money it is a safe bet that paper assets will take a big hit over time. This may allow you the opportunity to leverage the value of your savings up allowing you to purchase sooner.
What should come first, the land or the tools? This is a question that you will need to answer. If you have the means to buy property now outright it might be the best idea to get it and work on the tools next. If you have property, you have the means to grow food and provide a minimal structure for shelter. In a worse case scenario, this might be the best insurance policy to have especially if you may lose your current home due to job loss or other economic shock. This is what your plan will help you to decide.
Nobody knows better than you what your needs are and what your capabilities are. A sound plan will help you through the difficult times we are facing. No two plans work equally well for everyone so your plan needs to be tailored for you and your circumstances to be most effective. It costs you very little to run some numbers and do some research now but the payoff can be well worth it. .
If you don’t know where to begin, start with this. Make a spreadsheet with all of your monthly purchases and bills. Do this for the whole year and include everything you know you will have to pay during the year such as mortgage, insurance and even clothing. Once you have this list you will see the payments that are somewhat set every month and those that vary. It is the variable items where you will save the money you need for your plan. You must look at these variable items and decide what is more important, entertainment and expensive foods now or financial peace of mind later. You must develop a plan to save as much of your disposable income as possible while still providing those things in a cheaper way such as growing and canning your own food or repairing your clothing instead of just buying something new.
The paradigm we all have built our lives on is coming to an end and those that refuse to plan for the inevitable changes will be devastated. The flexibility you have in future years will determine how well you will adjust and how much pain you will have to endure. Those that have no plan will suffer the most and will find it difficult to lead a normal life. If you have no plan it is not too late but time is very short. You must act now or live with the consequences.
By: Tom Chatham
Recently when the G20 met they discussed plans to deal with the devaluing currencies around the world. The same bankers that created this problem are going to fix it by creating another problem. When the system breaks down they intend to fix it by making the problem bigger.
The idea is to make the IMF the new Global FED and use SDR’s as the new world currency. Once the bankers do this they can start their Ponzi scheme all over again but on a larger scale. What the bankers don’t own when the system fails this time, they figure they will own by the time it fails again. Creating a world currency that is still under their control will allow them to decide who the winners and losers are in the world. They will be able to redistribute the wealth and resources of the world anywhere they want.
The bankers are counting on this to continue their looting of the world and are counting on a gullible public to go along with it. If the public stands by and allows this after the currency fails all I can say is, the people deserve to lose everything they have, which they will. When the currency fails it will mean that everyone that has produced excess over the years, and stored that excess production in the form of fiat currency for future use, will lose it and have to start producing and saving all over again. That will mean that all of your excess production ended up in someone else’s pocket. This is what fiat currencies are designed to do.
For anyone that has been keeping up with the machinations of this group of international swindlers, it is obvious that some sort of self preservation is in order. Before they can destroy the system as we know it, it would be beneficial for local communities to devise a medium of exchange they can use and have it in the wings ready to go when the system breaks. Gold and silver are preferable but most people will not get on board until it is too late so something else may be needed.
If most Americans held just $25 face value in pre ‘65 silver coinage, that would be enough to circulate and establish local commerce. That does not sound like a lot of money but keep in mind, this amount in the 1940’s was a weeks pay ($1,299 annually) to most people and prices reflected that fact. The minimum wage was 40 cents per hour and a quart of milk cost 15 cents. A recalibration of prices to 1940 values would be a starting point to get things moving again. These two small steps by the population could avert disaster and provide a foundation to return to a stable monetary system. Unfortunately, very few Americans will make the small sacrifice now to insure a transition can take place without a great deal of chaos.
Even if there is not enough pre ‘65 coinage available to do this, the purchase of 20 oz of silver bullion by individuals would have the same effect. Getting silver into the hands of as many individuals as possible is the only long term solution to this fiat madness. The use of gold coins in this situation would act as the medium for larger purchases.
The use of local barter currency is an alternative that would work well but would be limited to the locality where issued while silver would be universally accepted. Barter script could be used universally but it would take a great deal of coordination to make it accepted. This would take time and the chaos experienced would make it difficult initially.
When the current fiat currencies fail we must not allow a new fiat currency to take its place. This will be nothing short of knowingly selling ourselves into debt slavery for life. Any attempt to subvert this fiat transition will likely be met with force projected by the surrogates of the ruling class. When this happens you will have to decide how you will deal with these people. The future of this nation will be determined by the actions we take during this crisis.
By: Tom Chatham
Winter is a time of decay and destruction to make way for the coming renewal of spring. Those who fail to prepare for the winter can have a difficult time getting through it. Each season has its’ differences but winter is by far the harshest. Every season has a role to play in the cycle of life.
Strauss and Howe explain the four seasons of human cycles in The Fourth Turning. As it is said, history does not repeat, but it does rhyme. The reason for this are the four cycles we continuously go through. History bears this fact out all too plainly for anyone who cares to look.
We are now in the winter season of the current cycle. This cannot be changed. The generation, born between 1964 and 1984, are the Nomads, the ones with the survival and leadership skills to lead the way in the winter season. This is how it always is.
If they play their roles well, it will usher in a new golden age, like the High we experienced after WW II but if they fail to step forward and do their part, we could begin an era of darkness. The future is not written, but will play out based on human actions that are somewhat consistent. We must not ignore the cycles and prepare for the trying times ahead.
Strauss and Howe explain how human cycles always culminate in the winter season and move us through the gateway into the next cycle. The winter season is a time of hardship and danger. It is a time of crisis. The American Revolution, the Civil War and The Great Depression/WW II were all winter seasons. Each winter season culminates with a great war and this one should be no different. During each of these wars, the newest and most destructive weapons in existence were used to achieve total victory.
With the weapons we now posses, this could make this cycle the most deadly to date. Something noticeable about these three wars is that each was worse than the last. The culminating wars are not the only thing we have to fear in the winter season. The social, political and financial currents that flow through society will be in upheaval as well. As Strauss and Howe have said, you should prepare for the winter season as if it were a winter blizzard that will last seven years. There is still time to prepare for the coming winter cycle but time is short.
Using the Great Depression/WW II as a guide but assuming it will be worse this time will give you an idea of how to prepare yourself and your family. In The American Dream Lost and Rebuilding The Republic I discuss some ways to shield yourself and your family from situations like we are about to face. Those that go into the future with their eyes open and armed with the knowledge of history will be in a position to mold their futures and that of their children. This Fourth Turning is expected to end around 2025 so you should plan accordingly. The bulk of the crisis should be seen between now and 2020.
Another aspect of the two previous winter seasons is the fact that personal liberties and freedom were substantially decreased each time. This winter season could see the final slide into dictatorship or the rebirth of freedom, depending on the will of the people. How the people react to the coming crisis will be the determining factor.
The plans you make now will determine your future and that of your children so due diligence should be taken. As with a winter storm, you should plan for all aspects of this season. You want to insure food, shelter, clothing, energy and medical resources are available to weather the storm. These are not the only things to concern yourself with.
With the passing of winter you need to insure you have the resources to begin the new spring. The seeds to begin anew may be actual seeds, property, gold or silver or equipment to produce the needs of people. The spring should be a time of prosperity and new beginnings so insure you are prepared to take advantage of it. This is something that each and every person must do for themselves. Armed with the knowledge of history, our future will be what we make of it.
Those that understand The West Line and the cycles of history will have a better understanding of the world around them and will have some idea of the changes to come and the actions they must take.
By: Tom Chatham
The number of Americans now receiving government food assistance is over 47 million. If this economic plunge continues as is likely, even more people will go on the government dole. It is a foregone conclusion that the government wants more people dependant on the federal government for their everyday needs. With the current money printing going on it is also a foregone conclusion that our fiat money system will collapse at some point.
As the dollar is devalued watch for the government to increasingly turn to electronic money as a way to keep up with the increased needs for commerce. They will explain how it is much cheaper for the nation than printing all of that paper and minting all of those expensive coins. Also watch for the EBT card, or a new government card to become a multi use card where all government payments and benefits are deposited for use. This will give the government the ability to instantly impose a new electronic currency when the old one breaks down. Those that are not on the government dole will have to sign up for a card or find themselves locked out of most commerce. With the use of mobile devices the advent of a cashless society is much easier and plausible than ever before.
Electronic currencies are a way for those in charge to control everything the public does. With all transactions taking place electronically, the government will know immediately what you are buying and can even control what your electronic currency can buy. The EBT cards now used cannot be used to buy vitamins. That poses the question, why would the government allow the purchase of junk food with these cards but not something that can keep you healthy? That would imply they want a lot of sick, overweight people in this country. That would be beneficial to the pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies which had a hand in writing the Obamacare legislation.
With an EBT card they can control exactly what you are allowed to eat and if the system is expanded to all transactions, it can include what you wear, read, drive, where you live and how much you can save. If they control what you can buy and your card has a use it or loose it financial cap on it, you will be inclined to spend and buy what they want you to buy, eliminating the ability to save for your future.
With an electronic system it will be easier to identify those that are stocking up on certain things which might be considered anti government. With a cashless society the purchase of guns and ammo would be easy to eliminate. With the current war on gardens around the country it would be easy to prevent the purchase of seeds and canning supplies to produce and preserve your own food. With the current state of electronic devices it would be easy for someone’s every move to be tracked continuously. This could be the governments “solution” to the problem they created by printing too much money.
Many people would dismiss these things out of hand but they have some sinister implications. With the current move of the government to the extreme left, these things become more probable every day. Private property and privacy are not something true socialists care about or even understand. It is the cause of the social, economic and environmental destruction we now see around the world.
What should a person who cares about liberty and privacy do? Many are already taking the steps to limit the extent of damage that the coming catastrophe will incur on their lives. The acquisition of gold, silver, diamonds and other hard assets to act as a store of wealth for future use, the storing of food and household goods and the purchase of land and equipment to produce the things they need are all things those paying attention are doing to insure they can care for their families in the future. The acquisition of knowledge once considered common knowledge to our grandparents is being resurrected. The advent of barter groups and currencies to operate outside of the governments control are slowly increasing in numbers and the increasing use of alternate energy systems to insure access to electricity and fuels for vehicles is spreading.
The world is changing and not for the better. The crisis we now find ourselves in will get much worse before it improves. Those that have complete faith in the government and the money printers will never see it coming. Those that bask in the warm glow of government control eventually find themselves consumed in its uncontrolled fires.
By: Tom Chatham – Author of Rebuilding The Republic
Every liberal I see on TV keeps yelling tax the rich more. I don’t think they really understand how that will work so lets look at it. Most rich people get a majority of their income through capital gains so raising the income tax rate will do little. For someone that is mega rich , they don’t need to make any money during the year. They already have enough to live on the rest of their lives, several times over. That being the case, they have no need to make any money from capital gains either.
The rich are currently selling off their paper assets and putting this money into hard assets to preserve it for later. If you have a vault full of gold, you won’t pay any taxes on the gains until you sell it so it can go up in price multiple times without the owner having to pay any annual taxes on it. They can sell off small amounts as they need it and pay only minor taxes every year.
George Lucas recently sold the Star Wars franchise to Disney for mega millions. He sold it now so he could save many millions of dollars in taxes that will take effect next year. Sotheby’s has been selling record amounts of art, jewelry and other tangibles as the owners take advantage of this last opportunity to save on higher taxes. The buyers are buying to lock in their asset values for future use. This is exactly what I mentioned in The American Dream Lost. Between the new taxes and monetary devaluation, the rich will increasingly convert their wealth into hard assets to preserve it. Those that stay in paper assets will have it taxed and devalued away until nothing remains.
This wealth preservation is lost on those who think taxing more will get the money from the rich. When the tax revenues fall, as they always do when something like this is done, the government will have to do something else to appease their base. The only way to get money from someone that has plenty and pays no taxes is to create a new tax. The only tax that accomplishes this is a wealth tax. If you tax someone on their net worth, it makes no difference when or how they got it. This is a tax that would seriously hurt the super rich and is why I think they would not allow it. All of those good liberal millionaires and billionaires that talk of not being taxed enough would change their tune very fast if this type of tax were proposed.
If the rich do not pay then someone must. Even if they did pay, it would not be enough to keep up with government spending. The advent of new taxes such as the VAT or Carbon tax would hit everyone at every level and those in power would see this as preferable to giving up their wealth for redistribution. Keep in mind that half of the elected officials in D.C. are millionaires or multi millionaires.
These taxes are only the beginning. You can also expect them to come after your savings and retirement plans as well. As the government coffers empty they will need more fixes to keep the mill running. The current government will begin to resemble something like the Ottoman Empire where such things as each tree was taxed so most were cut down by the owners to avoid the tax. This type of environment is what causes the massive wealth destruction that impoverishes nations as people destroy assets and capital to avoid the horrendous taxes they cannot afford.
In the end the government will own everything that has not been destroyed. This is the creation of the socialist state where the people rely on government for everyday needs. This is a process that can take years or even decades to complete. It can be done so slowly that most cannot identify the reasons they are becoming impoverished. The ones who fail to see the reasons are the same ones who ignore the warnings of others who see clearly and avoid the losses.
Many now see the writing on the wall and some have even petitioned the White House for session. Many liberals have launched counter petitions to have the secessionists stripped of their citizenship and be deported. I find humor in this train of thought. If you secede you revoke your citizenship and self deport, and you do so while taking the land with you.
The coming years will be difficult and nothing like anyone could ever imagine. As the government becomes more desperate it will take measures that seem illogical and unproductive but it will do so as a means of self preservation. If the people sit idly by and allow the destruction of their economy and private property and do nothing, they deserve what they end up with. That may be nothing more than a hole in the ground, which they will be taxed on.