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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Unelected Bureaucrats at all Levels Have Ruined Our Nation

Poor Man Survival
Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…
ISSN 2161-5543
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources
How much power do unelected bureaucrats and intelligence agents wield inside the United States government?
In reality, America hasnt had a two-party political system in decades and its bureaucrats and greedy Wall Street masters have no fear of deficits as there is no way to curb spending while on the road to national bankruptcy [on March 23 our irresponsible leaders passed a massive $1.3 trillion spending billwhich no one took the time to read and tossed any kind of fiscal sanity out the door]!  Deficits will soar again, the Fed will panic, more fake money will be issued, consumer prices will increase again and the Deep State will gain even more power and the people will LOSE as theyve done for decades!
The ‘deep state’ and its allies are attacking not only the president but also the Constitution.
You probably have a strong sense that something serious is happening to the governmentbut its hard to tell what it is. Politicians, judges, agents, lawyers, journalists and commentators are filling thousands of pages and thousands of hours of airtime, but the truth remains murky.
It begins to make sense once you realize the horrifying truth that the United States government is actually at war with itself.
Over the last century, Americans have allowed the federal government to swell into exactly what the nations founders sought to prevent. It now includes millions of federal agents, secretaries, regulators and other unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats exerting enormous power over average people, over lawmakers, over judges and even over the president.
Many of these bureaucrats share the same ideology. They believe that much of the power over your life should be controlled, not by you but by the government.
The most forceful parts of this bureaucracy are its agents: regulators who restrict what you can do, judge whether you are guilty, and enforce punishment on you; spies who monitor your social media posts, e-mails, phone calls and location; armed agents who can raid your home and workplace. Most Americans assume that these powers are only used against the bad guys,but already many of these tactics have been used against millions of average peopleand against the president they elected. The unconstitutional power exerted by unelected bureaucrats has a name: the deep state.

The Obama Administration

During eight years in power, President Barack Obama and his administration changed the American government and transformed America.
Through his heavy abuse of executive actions, the president became infamous for overruling Congress, passing lawsof his own, and choosing when and where to enforce them. He made illegal appointments and illegal changes to his health-care law without involving lawmakers. He ordered a federal review of state election systems. His Internal Revenue Service successfully targeted conservative political groups and got away with it. But that was not all.
Obama used the Department of Justice as a political weapon. Under Attorney General Eric Holder, it became filled with bureaucrats who were politically motivated or pressured to put radical ideology above the law. Prosecutors were found to be targeting innocent people for political reasons. The department worked to stop enforcement of immigration laws and threatened to sue states that enforced their own immigration laws. It also pressured agents at its Federal Bureau of Investigation to advance its political ideology.
The Department of Justice was found to be secretly monitoring thousands of phone calls from Associated Press journalists. It created legal arguments promoting the presidents power to assassinate people, including Americans on foreign soil and potential future drone strikes against American citizens on American soil.
The Supreme Court ruled against Obamas Justice Department unanimously about 20 times; even the liberal justices Obama appointed to the court said he was exceeding his authority.
Obamas National Security Agency was found to be spying on citizensinternational communications without identifying its targets in court, without a warrant, even without any suspicion of wrongdoing. (The nsas definition of a terrorist suspect included someone searching the Web for suspicious stuff.) It later emerged that top Obama administration officialsincluding cia director John Brennan, United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power, National Security Adviser Susan Rice and Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodesrequested that the nsa reveal the identities of hundreds of people it had spied on who were part of the presidential campaign of Donald Trump.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper was asked point-blank, under oath: Does the nsa collect any type of data at all on millions, or hundreds of millions, of Americans?Clapper said no. A few months later, numerous leaked nsa documents showed that the agency intentionally spied on millions of everyday Americans who were not suspected of any wrongdoing. Clapper later described his perjury as answering in the most truthful or least untruthful manner.The nsa was also caught spying on Americanselected representatives: members of Congress. (The Department of Justice provided legal arguments defending the nsa.)

Since Donald Trump was elected president of the United States, a large amount of classified information has leaked from the government to the press. The majority of this information from anonymous and barely anonymous sources has been designed to discredit, damage and possibly end his presidency.
Meanwhile, intelligence agencies have withheld intelligence reports from the president, and former spy chiefs have denounced the president as inexperienced, unstable and unethical. Federal agents have raided the office of the presidents personal attorney. Bureaucrats have found ways to obstruct, slow down, openly challenge or simply ignore the presidents instructions. When President Trump has publicly criticized and fired officials for such behavior, news commentators have accused him of dismantling a pillar of American government.
The vague complexities and plausible deniabilitiesinside the labyrinth of the federal government are confusing enough. But these scandals, investigations, accusations and lies within the government are absolutely bewildering to many. But it all comes down to one definite, disturbing fact: The federal government is at war with itself.
Bureaucrats in Washington are waging a civil war against the Trump administration. He said he wanted to drain the swamp,but the swamp is fighting back. Many commentators are saying that something called the deep stateis trying to exert its control over the United States government to the point of forcing President Trump from office.
The vague complexities and plausible deniabilitiesinside the labyrinth of the federal government are confusing enough. But these scandals, investigations, accusations and lies within the government are absolutely bewildering to many. But it all comes down to one definite, disturbing fact: The federal government is at war with itself.
Republican strategist Roger Stone said that if globalists within the government succeed in ousting President Trump, a spasm of violencecould erupt. Some describe the nation as hurtling toward rioting and urban warfare.
Such warnings sound extreme. But to know how seriously you should take the deep-state threat, you have to understand what it is and why it is fighting President Trump.

Deep State Rising

The term deep stateoriginated in the 1970s in Turkey to describe a powerful, unelected government of bureaucrats, spies and military officers who colluded with drug cartels to put down a Kurdish insurgency.
The Oxford English Dictionary defines deep stateas a body of people, typically influential members of government agencies or the military, believed to be involved in the secret manipulation or control of government policy.
In the United States, the term typically describes the permanent bureaucracy of unelected officials who govern the country with increasing autonomy and decreasing transparency.
Fears that such a group of unelected officials could secretly be directing government policy date back to 1947, when President Harry Truman signed the National Security Act. This act created the Department of Defense, the National Security Council, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Central Intelligence Agency. During the Cold War, officials like cia director Allen Dulles and Federal Bureau of Investigation director J. Edgar Hoover recruited at least a thousand former Nazi agents to work as American spies and informants. This was done behind the backs of the American people, and President Truman came to deeply regret his role in establishing these agencies.
I never had any thought that when I set up the cia that it would be injected into peacetime cloak-and-dagger operations,he wrote in the Washington Post on Dec. 22, 1963. Some of the complications and embarrassment I think we have experienced are in part attributable to the fact that this quiet intelligence arm of the president has been so removed from its intended role that it is being interpreted as a symbol of sinister and mysterious foreign intrigueand a subject for Cold War enemy propaganda.
Instead of making the cia more accountable to the American people, however, government officials allowed the intelligence community to continue operating with negligible oversight and considerable independence, to the point of assassinating foreign leaders and illegally monitoring the communications of U.S. citizens, up to and including the president of the United States. In 1971, a Navy stenographer admitted to rifling through burn bags, interoffice envelopes and briefcases for communications between President Richard Nixon and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and also passing on top-secret documents to the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon. (The espionage became known as the Moorer-Radford affair.) The Joint Chiefs of Staff was illegally spying on its commander in chief.
When Sen. Frank Church led an investigation into cia, fbi and National Security Agency activities in the 1970s, he warned that technological advancements were giving these agencies unprecedented surveillance powers.
If this government ever became a tyranny, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know,Senator Church said on nbcs Meet the Press in 1975. I dont want to see this country ever go across the bridge. I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision, so that we never cross over that abyss.
But the technological capacities that Church warned about grew stronger during the presidencies of George W. Bush and Barack Obama. President Bush signed an executive order in 2002 authorizing the nsa to eavesdrop on U.S. citizens and foreign nationals if the government suspected that they had ties to terrorists. Even though President Obama promised to curb data collection of U.S. citizens, he greatly expanded the power of Americas entrenched surveillance state. During his administration, intelligence agents illegally monitored journalists, members of Congress, the Trump presidential campaign and millions of American citizens.
Even though Barack Obama is no longer president, most of the 850,000 people who held top-secret clearances in his administration are still on the job.

The Fourth Branch of Government

Whether we call it the deep state or something else, it is undeniable that Washington has a deeply embedded bureaucracy that has existed for decades. Many of these bureaucrats staunchly oppose President Trump and his inner circle. The problems this reality creates represent an enormous distortion of how Americas Founding Fathers established the government
Final Notes…
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A Smoking Frog Feature, Shallow Planet Production

Monday, June 11, 2018

Is the Financial Game Over in America and Elsewhere?

Poor Man Survival
Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…
ISSN 2161-5543
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

   Upon returning from my most recent trip, I had a discussion with a fellow from Britain who like myself, is a collector of oddities and a supporter of Trump and of Brexit as is most of his circle of friends who despite massive stong-arm style persuasion from the establishment to remain a part of the European Union, they want nothing to do with it and are vehemently against the uncontrolled immigration of Muslims into their country who are getting massive amounts of free money and health care benefits even though just like in this country, the veterans are being ignored in favored of these illegals!
In Great Britain at least dental care is included but the Muslims have overwhelmed the system to the point where no one is getting timely care and the same is happening in so-called ‘sanctuary cities’ and just as resentment is growing against Muslims who are raping women throughout Europe and committing other crimes [a major reason why Merkel, the PM in Germany has lost support and why vigilante groups are rising up against these migrants]…he wants nothing to do with remaining in the Union or letting in more illegal immigrants and has recently moved his family further away from London and its Muslim mayor.

Meanwhile, the bankers and elites continue their march toward ruination of America as well on other fronts…
   The respective Boards of Trustees for Medicare and Social Security released their annual reports for 2018.
As usual, the numbers are pretty gruesome… and the reports plainly stated what we’ve been talking about for years: the trust funds for both Social Security and Medicare are going to run out of money.
In the case of Medicare, the Trustees project that its largest trust fund will be fully depleted in 2026, just eight years away. In the context of retirement, that’s right around the corner.
For Social Security, the Trustee report stated that the program will spend more money on benefits in 2018 than it will generate in income and tax revenue.
So this year will be the first time Social Security has run a deficit since 1982.
But it gets worse. Because according to the Trustees’ projections, the program will continue running larger and larger deficits until it too becomes fully depleted in 2034.
After that, recipients can expect at least a 25% cut in the benefits that they were promised and worked their entire lives to receive.
Again, these numbers come directly from the Trustees of Social Security and Medicare (which includes the US Treasury Secretary).
The reports were so dire that mainstream publications picked them up almost immediately.
Curiously, though, a number of newspapers tried to play down the bad news, dismissively telling their readers that Social Security and Medicare are just fine, and that those sobering projections don’t matter.
These are common refrains. They’ll state, for example, that there’s nothing to worry about because the government will step in and bail out the programs.
Is that so? Well, who is going to bail out the government?
According to the Treasury Department’s annual financial report, Uncle Sam is already insolvent to the tune of $20.4 trillion.
And those numbers are only getting worse too. Treasury’s own projections show annual budget deficits in excess of $1 trillion starting in 2020.
Simply put, a short-term fix of Social Security and Medicare would cost trillions of dollars. And that would just be a down payment on the long-term costs of fixing the programs.
The federal government simply doesn’t have that kind of money. Not even close.
So the expectation that some politician is going to come riding in on a white horse with checkbook in hand is ludicrous.
A second commonly held myth is that these Social Security and Medicare projections are irrelevant because they “have a history of being wrong.”
That’s completely untrue.
35 years ago, the Social Security annual report from 1983 projected that the program’s cost would exceed its income and tax revenue in… 2020.
The current report states that this is going to happen in 2018.
That’s only a two year difference from what they projected over three decades ago. So they pretty much nailed it.
More importantly, though, we’re not even talking about long-range projections, which typically look 50-75 years into the future. We’re talking about EIGHT years from now.
But even if you take a longer-term view, the data is still grim.
Social Security and Medicare provide benefits to people based primarily on tax revenue generated by those who are currently in the work force.
Essentially the programs require a certain number of workers paying into the system for every single retiree drawing benefits. They call this the worker-to-retiree ratio.
In order for this delicate balance to work, population growth has to remain fairly stable. Major swings in population growth throw everything out of whack.
The critical problem is that both fertility rates and population growth (which takes into consideration immigration and mortality) have been declining.
The US fertility rate has been on a general downward trend since 1990, and in steep decline since 2007.
And overall population growth rates for the past several years have been the lowest in more than five decades.
This contrasts with the years immediately following World War II, in which there was an explosion in population growth.
Those are the folks who are currently receiving Social Security and Medicare benefits.
But due to the declines in population growth, there are no longer enough workers paying into the system (even with unemployment at multi-decade lows) to support the programs’ current recipients.
The end result is what we’re talking about today: Social Security and Medicare can’t generate enough revenue to support their costs and will thus soon deplete their cash reserves.
The government is trying to put a brave face on this, telling us that the alarming drop in the national fertility rate is only temporary, even though it’s been falling steadily for three decades.
But they insist it will reverse soon.
Frankly, it doesn’t seem sensible to plan one’s retirement based the ability of these bureaucrats to accurately predict how much sex people are going to be having in the coming years.
Instead, let’s look at the big picture: Social Security and Medicare are both perennially mismanaged with a history of gridlock and inaction.
And the people who are responsible for overseeing these trust funds have clearly stated that the programs will run out of money and be unable to pay the benefits that have been promised.
What sane person would possibly put all of his/her retirement eggs in that basket?
There are clearly better ways.
One approach is to establish more robust retirement plans (like a solo 401(k) or self-directed IRA) and start maximizing your contributions.
These types of structures allow you to direct your capital to potentially more lucrative investments that go beyond mainstream stocks and bonds. Plus, in many respects, they can be cheaper to maintain.
This is important, because if you can squeeze out an extra 1% per year between cost savings and better investment returns, it can add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional retirement savings when compounded over several decades.
Regardless of what happens (or doesn’t happen) with Social Security in the future, it’s hard to imagine you’ll be worse off for doing this.
Because... If you live, work, bank, invest, own a business, and hold your assets all in just one country, you are putting all of your eggs in one basket.
You’re making a high-stakes bet that everything is going to be ok in that one country — forever.
All it would take is for the economy to tank, a natural disaster to hit, or the political system to go into turmoil and you could lose everything—your money, your assets, and possibly even your freedom.

This article originally appeared on the Sovereign Man blog, here
 Bruce the Poor Man
NOTE:  Perhaps Preppers will have the self fulfilling prophecy a dystopian world where everything falls apart and the government is no longer able to pull another rabbit out of the hat.  
Dystopia is after all the belief hat when the lights go out and disaster strikes, neighbors often become our enemies [if weve stockpiled food and ammo and they have not]they will visit you armed with a shotgun vs. The contents of their freezer so you can have a BBQ before it all spoilsat least that is the narrative or predatory belief most of us have come to believe [perhaps it is the result of those zombie movies]YET, disaster recovery usually works best when we work together vs. Relying on the government.  Disasters, whether man-made or natural seem to part of the natural order of the universe, the flow of life.  It is up to us as to how we respond to those ebbs and flows.  Cooperate and live or die.
Be sure to label your containers clearly so that children and guests will know that these are your first aid kits. For the plastic containers, you could just use a label maker to put some sticky labels on the containers. With the bags, you might go so far as to sew on a red cross patch. If you have a military style first aid bag, you could secure that patch with a little velcro.
First and foremost, being grateful—not just for possessions, but also for the people, places and simple pleasures in life—is good for the soul. But an attitude of gratitude is also a proven antidote to impulse purchasing because it creates a sense of abundance within the individual. When you’re feeling full of gratitude, you’re less likely to subconsciously try to fill emotional holes by treating yourself with gifts and accumulating more stuff.
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14 of the best reports I’ve assembled on protecting your freedom…Here is the download link.

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A Final Note…
Contributors and subscribers enable the Poor Man Survivor to post 150+ free essays annually. It is for this reason they are Heroes and Heroines of New Media. Without your financial support, the free content would disappear for the simple reason that I cannot keep body and soul together on my meager book sales & ecommerce alone.
Support our efforts by shopping my storefront…
A Smoking Frog Feature, Shallow Planet Production