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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Run your home like a corporation, more government folly

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin
Your Choice for Usable Urban Resources

In This Issue:

· New Alt energy videos added
· New PM Contest-Survey-What Would You Do if…
· Middle Class really is vanishing, America Locks up too many
· Stupidity in government grows, economy declines
· Plastiki-amazing pop bottle boat
· The web of debt, run your household like a corporation
· Feds shut down over 70,000 blogs

In 1930, as part of a speech, FDR said, “The individual sovereignty of our states must be destroyed.”

Upgrade, Update, Uber Cool Frenzy

The Poor Man has been on a roll, adding new videos and resources to the site. This week’s new resources all under the our DIY tab on alternative energy and include:

· Turn Pop Cans into a powerful Solar Heating Panel
· BYO Solar Furnace
· Free Bio-gas Energy Device

We’re already eating lots of veggies grown from out garden. Nothing quite as good as homegrown tomatoes, cucumbers and squash! Our corn crop is coming right along too and should be ready in a few more weeks. After several years of failed experiments and attempts at growing stuff in the Arizona climate, this is great!

EBay note…as others have mentioned, it’s getting tougher to keep one’s PowerSeller status going. Mine was reduced to the bronze level this week (smaller discount) despite the fact I have a 100% feedback since I started 10 years ago. But I did get a letter and a certificate suitable for framing from ebay complimenting me on my status…like a grade school kid, I jumped up and down for joy at getting my star for the day…now I’m expecting a call from an expert at ebay HQ who will shower me with wisdom on how I can do even better – find me some new $99 laptops I can resell, that will make it better!

Stupidity in Government Grows, Economy Declines

There is a distinct correlation between idiocy in government and law and why our country is in decline and why the middle class is shrinking. Not many years ago a young man was denied a position as a police officer. Although he’d passed his training with flying colors, the hiring board decided his IQ of 120 was too high.

America locks up too many people, some for acts that should not even be criminal. No other rich country is nearly as punitive as the Land of the Free.
“One American adult in 100 festers behind bars (with the rate rising to one in nine for young black men). Its imprisoned population numbers 2.3 million...(yet) America’s violent-crime rate is higher than it was 40 years ago. Guess who profits from incarceration? Read the rest of this story and another on 10 Signs the Middle Class Really is Vanishing – READ the rest of the story at the bottom of our main page at

Apparently, no one was able to figure out who wrote that Monopoly Prayer, which I shared a couple of issues back. Tell you what, I have another small contest this week. The winner will get a CD ROM titled the Homestead Library, which features all kinds of how-to on using horses on your farm, raising rabbits for food and so forth – 24 PDF files from a group called Revolution Arsenal.

Capitalizing on the theme I started on the AARP community, I will ask you the same question…If you were running the country, what would you do to restore it?
Take our survey and you might win…
Total government brings total poverty and misery…
In 1935, Amos Pinchot wrote that, “Today the nations in the world may be divided into two classes. The nations in which the government fears the people, and the nations in which the people fear the government.”

This week’s resources you can use

>>>Cheesemaking, sausage making, dispatching a rabbit and other useful homesteading skills via video and stills…good resource at:

Run your household like a corporation-your own Wall Street with this Coupon Bootcamp site…pretty cool blog & a worth checking out!

>>>Sam’s Club is hosting an open house beginning Friday, August 6 through Sunday, August 8 for members and guests alike to take advantage of savings from everyday needs for home and work, and throughout key back-to-school departments including electronics.
Sam’s Club limits open house events and has only held a few throughout its history, including an event two years ago to celebrate its 25th Anniversary.
During an open house, non-members can shop Sam’s Club for free and are not required to pay the customary 10 percent service fee should they make a purchase.

>>>Low Cost Cleaners you make at home…
· For windows – mix a solution of 45% tap water, 45% rubbing alcohol and 10% household ammonia (I use the lemon scented variety). Some like to add vinegar to their window cleaning solution but I feel it defeats the purpose as the acid in vinegar will only neutralize the ammonia. This solution is also good for an overnight soak of antique glass which has become cloudy.
· All purpose cleaner – add ½ cup of washing soda to one gallon of warm water – don’t use this on fiberglass or aluminum (you might lose your fishing boat)!
· Disinfectant – Mix one gallon of warm water, ¾ cup of household bleach and one tablespoon of powdered laundry detergent. To achieve good results, leave this solution wet on the surface for about 5-minutes before rinsing an drying. I know some folks say you should no longer use bleach, but I think the stuff is great for a wide variety of purposes including keeping the drinking water you store clean.

Somehow, when men are talking, they forget they can’t do everything women can do!

Meat Preservation - Some Salting & Smoking Ideas

Recently a friend of ours shared some home butchered, home smoked bacon with us that was simply delicious. Based on Kevin’s input here’s what he suggests.

Kevin uses a lot of salt and buys it in 50lb sacks locally. He uses one peck of salt to about 500 pounds of pork…all parts of the hog are salted, mid-section, ham, shoulders, and bacon. (I’ll pass on the pig snouts and feet). To salt pork:

Put salt in 5-gallons of water to make a brine. Take 4 lbs of salt, 2 lbs of brown sugar, and depending on taste, 1-2 teaspoons of cayenne pepper. Do not use metal tubs. Rub bacon thoroughly in the salt and brown sugar mixture, pack it tightly into a crock and cover with the brine.
Leave it in the brine for 4-7 weeks; then smoke it. (You can use an old refrigerator to make a small smokehouse).

See here for plans, supplies and recipes too:

Smoking should be done over a ‘cold smoke.’ A small hickory fire, fire of corn cobs, (mesquite does nicely too) can be used too. You don’t need a big fire, just smoke. Put your ham in a brown paper bag and hang it socket side down so it will drain. Make certain your bag is well sealed to keep bugs out.

When you’re ready to use the smoked meat, don’t be overly concerned if there is some mold on the exterior. Just use a sharp knife to peel it off.

The Old Virginia method. Salt the hams down for 5-6 weeks, then brush the hams off and rub with hickory ashes. Let ‘em lay in these ashes for a week. Tie them up in your smokehouse and smoke them with green hickory chips for about six weeks.

To smoke fish, salt it down and then smoke it. Smoking fish should be a continuous process – 4-6 days of uninterrupted smoke. Most fish are smoked during summer months. Look for more information from your county extension office (complete link to every state is at our website under the Useful Links tab).

There are lots of recipes to try and you can find them online.


>>>It’s not too early to think about making your own supply of fireplace logs…great way to recycle those newspapers you forgot to read. Just lay out a bunch of sheets end-to-end, roll them up as tightly as you can, tie up the ends with twine. Wet them down in a solution of slightly soapy water and let them dry thoroughly (which is why I’m telling you now). NOTE: Do not use these newspaper logs in your woodstove unless your manufacturer specs that it’s OK.

Christine Abela is a web site designer, specializing in websites for small craft-related businesses. Most of her clients are female, over 40, and with very little knowledge of SEO or anything technical. She has just written a free email course about selling crafts online. So if you are a crafter or work in a related area, you can get her free email course at

News Clips to Sooth Your Soul

Mighty darn cool way to recycle empty pop bottles! Are they
selling the plans…this could prove to be the ultimate ‘poor man’s boat.’

· 'Plastiki' bottle ship completes epic Pacific voyage
The 'Plastiki', a boat made from 12,500 plastic bottles, completes her 8,000-nautical mile trans-Pacific voyage from San Francisco as she approaches Sydney Harbour on July 26, 2010.


A trend in the science of marketing and advertising has emerged that threatens to further impinge on our privacy. It involves disturbing and subversive personal data mining and unauthorized surveillance by retailers and advertisers.
Digital signage is a growing technology that not only captures a larger viewing audience through eye-catching advertising but collects and analyzes personal data through sophisticated facial recognition cameras embedded in a sign’s flat-panel screen unbeknownst to the viewer.
With the help of software integrated with the signage system and linked online, behavioral and personal characteristics of passersby are scrutinized by marketers. That information can be sold or marketed without the consumer’s permission or knowledge…more at:

FTC Issues Report on Reforming Debt Collection Litigation and Arbitration; Recommends Steps to Protect Consumers and Repair a Broken System
A new Federal Trade Commission report concludes that the system for resolving consumer debt collection disputes is broken, and recommends significant litigation and arbitration reforms to improve efficiency and fairness to consumers.

Local cities across the country continue with high traffic fines…
PM has always said traffic courts are just another taxing tool

Michigan tried to introduce legislation in May that would have required communities to conduct the studies needed to set those limits said his efforts have been thwarted by what he called "special interests" who want to keep speed limits low in order to collect revenue from speeding tickets.
There are speed traps throughout Michigan on roads where the speed limits are artificially low," said state Rep. Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge.

"A lot of communities don't want to lose that ticket revenue."
Finally, as the Poor Man has been predicting…(could social chaos follow)?
To cover for lost tax revenues, local governments will fire nearly 500,000 workers in the coming year, according to a national survey of counties and cities released Tuesday.

The National League of Cities, the National Association of Counties, and the U.S. Conference of Mayors found that 270 local governments planned to collectively lay off 8.6 percent of their workforce from the previous fiscal year to the next one. That percentage of all local public sector workers across the country amounts to 481,000 people. The report's authors expect local governments to make even more spending cuts in the near future.
----Remember, the “G” in government stands for gouge the citizen!
On July 9th, a blog platform that served more than 73,000 blogs, was quietly shut down without warning by the web host on orders from the Department of Homeland Security.

Feds confirmed that the site was shut down after FBI agents informed Blogetery’s web host ( that links to al-Qaeda bomb-making materials were found on the servers. Many (but not all) of the blogs have since been restored, but this was a frightening example of government power. Although it is important that the Feds acted quickly –no one can see any reason why blogs about gardening, cars and thousands of family blogs were shut down.
The government is closing in and assuring the destruction of America as we have known it. The seeds were sown with the collusion of banks and government and the complete divorce of the currency from gold.


Resources for Stockpiling and Disaster Preparation

Make Your Own Energy
Step-by-step guide reveals how to
make your own energy for $100 or less.

Terrific sites for resources and green, eco-friendly goods

Don’t Get Caught With Your Pantry Down – the all time best book on family preparedness has been updated & now includes an online video segment as well. Highly recommended 11th Edition.

Good source for your own domain registration, free lookups


Parting Thoughts

Despite all the hype and happy talk
from Washington and Wall Street,
consumer confidence plunged — AGAIN!

The Conference Board just reported that its Consumer Confidence Index fell far more than most economists expected — and it is now down nearly 20% since May alone!

Most people understand that the Fed, the regulators, and the monetary authorities have no credibility when it comes to: a) understanding what is going on, b) fixing it…rather the Washington-Wall Street cartel are still plundering the citizens of this country and Congress sucks up to all their nonsense…yeah, the recession is over and the sky isn’t falling!

The price of gold & silver reveal many people are not falling for government blather and propaganda. Confidence in our system is tempered by those in power who keep us permanently bamboozled with nonsensical economic statistics and there are many who continue to fall for it all hook, line and sinker.
If you are like the majority of us “middle classers” getting made poorer by the irresponsibility of our elected officials it will take a little time to accumulate a proper cache of stored goods and resources to include trade goods…the message is GET OFF YOUR ASS AND START Preparing!

We started predicting this last year…expect a VAT tax to become law within 12 months. Of course, this tax hits the lower income and what’s left of the middle class the hardest and if Obama has his way, the administration will soon lay their hands on your retirement accounts. To learn more about how the fiat money supply is rigged to hurt us or how the clowns on Wall Street have helped to jeopardize our nation’s credit rating, check
Maybe this is why underground shelters are making a comeback. Recent reports suggest these cold war era units are being sold again to protect families against nuclear bombs and other disasters.

The Vivos network, which offers partial ownerships similar to a timeshare in underground shelter communities, is one of several ventures touting escape from a surface-level calamity.

Radius Engineering in Terrell, Texas, has built underground shelters for more than three decades, and business has never been better, says Walton McCarthy, company president.

The company sells fiberglass shelters that can accommodate 10 to 2,000 adults to live underground for one to five years with power, food, water and filtered air, McCarthy says. Doomsday anyone?

That’s it for this edition of your eagerly awaited fountain of knowledge and inspiration!

Bruce “The Poor Man”


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Sunday, July 25, 2010

What would you do to fix the country? New Online Income Resources, More

Bruce’s Poor Man’s Recession Bulletin
Your choice for usable Urban Survival Resources

In this Issue:
· New online sources of extra income
· Goat herder makes cash
· A city which outsources everything & SURVIVES
· What’s wrong with government
· Fixing our country-what would you differently?

The American writer and satirist, Sam Ewing, once observed that inflation "is when you pay fifteen dollars for the ten-dollar haircut you used to get for five dollars...back when you still had hair."

Banging the Customer & Other Thoughts

My brother is a loss prevention manager for a large multi-national retail outlet and he used to tell me of a concept called “banging the customer.” Prevalent among convenience stores, the clerk would lay a package of gum or other candy on the counter and leave it there all day. Each time a customer with several items checked out, the gum would be rung up too.

The price of that gum might only be 50 cents, but it adds up day in and day out and if a customer caught it, the clerk could easily profess innocence and the charge would be refunded.

If you use eBay’s free TurboLister program for your listings, you may have noticed a similar problem in that it frequently adds on gallery listing fees, which apparently a lot of folks don’t catch. Colleagues of mine have caught this too and no one on eBay seems to have a clue and in most cases, does not respond. Several of us have deleted and reloaded the program and it still takes place…sure makes me wonder!

On another note…competing for customers and online marketing is more of a challenge today than ever before. There are tons of ‘gurus’ promising they have the solution to all of your online needs whether it’s figuring out Google’s new search engine methods or how to implement the 1001 various codes onto your website to achieve greater glory.

In many respects, online marketing requires more work than promoting a local retail store…but we all try to set ourselves apart from competitors and to get the word out there about our services…in that vein, the Poor Man added another interactive community to his arsenal through AARP which now offers a Groups section where anyone can create an interactive online presence. In my case, the Poor Man Survivor community on AARP is another means of promoting our cause!

Fixing our country...What would you differently?

Perhaps you have a cause you’d like to promote, something which caters to the over-50 community. Take a peek at and go to their Online Community section.
· Here’s what’s posted to the discussion "Fixing our country...What would you differently?" in Poor Man Survivor

Finally, a reminder to new and existing subscribers, you can place your free ads, wants, offers, etc. directly to the group home page at:


New Resources we like…Feel Free to share these with your friends! Most folks are always seeking ways to supplement their income & we share these resources freely but always use caution with ANY program.

Everyone has something to share. Use this site to share your expertise & earn some cash for yourself or your favorite charity.

More legitimate ways to earn extra cash online
Voice your opinion & get paid at:
American Consumer Opinion – or

Become a Spy & get paid for it at these sites…if you have an eye for fashion you can become a mystery shopper at or if you love food, try

Share and find even more resources on making ends meet at this blog:

Play games for cash – try these sites:

New FTC Rules Further Consumer Protection
It’s been 30 years since the FTC has updated its rules and this video covers many of the new online issues we face. Click on our Consumer Help tab to view the video

What do I sell (on eBay)…it’s been increasingly more difficult to source products that can be sold for a profit on eBay but this gal provides sourcing and how-to…she’s also a featured eBay speaker via teleseminars. Get her 15-part course free here:

“The government already owns 1 out of every 3 acres in the U.S. — 1 out of every 2 acres in the West”--Congressman Rob Bishop (R-UT)

Small Farmer & Goat Herder Creates
Successful Soap Biz

Behind every farm there is a unique story and for Mike and Shannon Wiggins it all started with a couple goats. Their daughter became involved in 4H and they soon learned what exactly would need to be done if they wanted to be seen as a serious farm. After registering with the A.D.G.A they became Galloping Goats Farm and home to a variety of different goats. After a while Shannon soon began to realize the potential behind the milk. Tapping into her creativity she launched Washington Goat Milk Soap. Made in her kitchen with only the best ingredients, her soaps are a natural choice for anyone whether or not they live in the Washington area. Read the rest of the interview and find other examples of what folks are doing to generate extra cash during these tough times at our BootStrapBiz section of our site:

Resources for Stockpiling
and Disaster Preparation

Make Your Own Energy
Step-by-step guide reveals how to
make your own energy for $100 or less.

Terrific site for resources and green, eco-friendly goods

Don’t Get Caught With Your Pantry Down – the all time best book on family preparedness has been updated & now includes an online video segment as well. Highly recommended 11th Edition.
Make enough laws and you create more criminals.
More criminals equals more control & the court
System becomes another taxing authority as well

Local government says it can't cut expenses? The New York Times:
A City Outsources Everything. Sky Doesn't Fall

MAYWOOD, Calif. - Not once, not twice, but three times in the last two weeks, Andrew Quezada says, he was stopped and questioned by the authorities here.

Mr. Quezada, a high school student who does volunteer work for the city, pronounced himself delighted.

"I'm walking along at night carrying an overstuffed bag," he said, describing two of the incidents. "I look suspicious. This shows the sheriff's department is doing its job."

Chalk up another Maywood resident who approves of this city's unusual experience in municipal governing. City officials last month fired all of Maywood's employees and outsourced their jobs.

While many communities are fearfully contemplating extensive cuts, Maywood says it is the first city in the nation in the current downturn to take an ax to everyone.

The school crossing guards were let go. Parking enforcement was contracted out, City Hall workers dismissed, street maintenance workers made redundant. The public safety duties of the Police Department were handed over to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

At first, people in this poor, long-troubled and heavily Hispanic city southeast of Los Angeles braced for anarchy.

Senior citizens were afraid they would be assaulted as they walked down the street. Parents worried the parks would be shut and their children would have nowhere to safely play. Landlords said their tenants had begun suggesting that without city-run services they would no longer feel obliged to pay rent.

The apocalypse never arrived. In fact, it seems this city was so bad at being a city that outsourcing - so far, at least - is being viewed as an act of municipal genius.

"We don't want to be the model for other cities to lay off their employees," said Magdalena Prado, a spokeswoman for the city who works on contract. "But our residents have been somewhat pleased."

The reaction is all the more remarkable because this is not a feel-good city. City Council hearings run hot, council members face repeated recall efforts and city officials fight in public. "You single-handedly destroyed the city," the city treasurer told the City Council at its most recent meeting.

Four years ago, in what was probably the high-water mark of acrimony in Maywood, a deputy city clerk was arrested and accused of soliciting a hit man to kill a city councilman. The deputy clerk, Hector Duarte, was concerned that his salary might be reduced or his job eliminated during a previous round of bad fiscal times; he was sentenced to a year in jail and six months of anger management counseling.

This time, the councilman, Felipe Aguirre, has received no threats and has seen remarkably little anger. "This is a very bad economy," said Mr. Aguirre, who like the mayor and fellow council members receives a stipend from the city of $347 every two weeks. Even if city employees lose their benefits, he said, "very good workers are still going to hang around."

Jose B. Garcia, an assistant city planner, will now be working on contract. "I still have a job," he said. "In that sense, I can't complain too much."

Maywood, which covers slightly more than one square mile, is one of the most densely populated cities in the country. The official population of 30,000 is believed to considerably understate the actual total of about 50,000.

It has some of the ills that plague other cities. Property taxes, a primary source of revenue, have declined to $900,000 from $1.2 million in 2007. Sales taxes have also dropped. But Maywood's biggest problem by far has been its police department.

A report by the state attorney general last year concluded the culture of the department "is one permeated with sexual innuendo, harassment, vulgarity, discourtesy to members of the public as well as among officers, and a lack of cultural, racial and ethnic sensitivity and respect."

The budget for the Police Department last year was nearly $8 million, more than half of Maywood's revenues. The contract with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department will cost about half of that. Insurance premiums for the city have fallen to $200,000 from $1 million.

The deputies have already engendered good will, Councilman Aguirre said, by cracking down on a local hotel that was a haven for prostitution.

One reason for the general enthusiasm might lie in the fact that many of the nonpolice workers have been rehired on contract, so in some cases the faces encountered by the public remain the same. In other words, no one has noticed much going wrong because there was not much to notice in the first place.

The five crossing guards, for instance, are doing the same work but are paid by a security company.

And it is possible the bad news is just slow in arriving. Maywood has dabbled in contracting before, and it has run awry in some instances. Skeptics cited the example of two handball courts in a Maywood park. City officials said it cost an outsized sum - hundreds of thousands of dollars - for a contractor to build three concrete walls.

Jerald Bennett was on his way to the $2 seniors' lunch at the bustling Maywood recreational center when another car made an illegal turn and almost rammed him. "It seems like that sort of thing is happening more and more," he said. "They're not patrolling the streets."

For others, however, the celebration here is practically palpable. Freed from its employees, Maywood has nowhere to go but up, they say.

"Remember the Soviet Union?" said Hector Alvarado, who heads a civic advocacy group. "They had a lot of bureaucracy, and they lost. Maywood was like that. Now people know if they don't work, they will be laid off. Much better this way."

What’s Wrong W/ Government
*Can any city afford this? It's not just the state of California that's facing overwhelming budget problems. Many of the municipalities in the Golden State are, too. Here's one reason why: In the city of Oakland, 1,149 people work for the police department. Of that number, more than half earn more than $100,000 a year. Last year, the top four wage-earners in the department were regular policemen. Each made more than $225,000 for the year—including $100,000 in overtime. Maybe crime doesn't pay; but fighting it sure can. Read the follow excerpt…

BELL, Calif. – Three administrators whose huge salaries sparked outrage in this small blue-collar suburb of Los Angeles have agreed to resign, the City Council said Friday.
Council members emerged from an hours-long closed session at midnight Friday and announced that they'd accepted the resignations of Chief Administrative Officer Robert Rizzo, Assistant City Manager Angela Spaccia and Police Chief Randy Adams.
Rizzo was the highest paid at $787,637 a year — nearly twice the pay of President Barack Obama — for overseeing one of the poorest towns in Los Angeles County.
Spaccia makes $376,288 a year and Adams earns $457,000, 50 percent more than Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck. More-

…No parting thoughts for this issue…well maybe even though the above should highlight why so many Americans are sick of government and how it has screwed the public. Consider the following as our parting thoughts for this issue.
Costs got out of hand. The United States has one of the least extensive social welfare systems. (It makes up for it with military spending.) Yet, its basic figures are not much different from those of most European states. The US has a current deficit equal to about 12% of GDP and has debt approaching 100% of GDP. If you include state and local debt, as well as the under-funded liabilities of its pension and health care plans, the total rises to more than 500%. In other words, future generations will have to devote 5 years' worth of total US output in order to pay for benefits awarded by a previous generation of politicians.

Until we meet again, that’s the scoop of the week.
Yours for better living,
Bruce ‘The Poor Man’

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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Fun Stuff-Which Future is Right For You?

Bruce’s Poor Man Recession Survival Bulletin
Your choice for usable Urban Survival resources

Inside this issue:

· Fun Stuff – which future is right for you?
· Monopoly Prayer
· Social chaos & using a weapon
· More useful resources

"Neither the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally corrupt." --Samuel Adams

Monopoly’s Prayer

I found this in an old book I recently purchased from an estate sale (book was dated 1898) and thought it rather appropriate for today as well…if you can find the author of it, you’ll win a copy of our Poor Man III CD ROM…just email me at

Our father, who art in England, Rothschild be thy name; thy kingdom come to America, thy will be done in the United States as it is in England; give us this day our bonds in gold, but not in silver…give us plenty of laboring men’s votes (read illegals) to keep the monopoly in power and its friends in office.

We know, our father, that we have done many things that were wrong; we have robbed the honest poor and brought distress to many a poor man. We know it was wrong to refund the bonds and make them payable in coin; we know it was wrong to water our railroad stock, but thou knowest that we made money by that.

Now, our father, thou knowest that we are above politics. It’s the same with us whether Democrats or Republicans rule, for thou knowest we are able to sway all parties in our favor.

Lead us not in the way of strikers, and above all, deliver us from the poor working people. Thus shall we have the kingdom, bonds, interest, power and gold, until the Republic shall end.

My guess this is from the late 1890s during Pres. William McKinley’s term…about the same time many started thinking about a New World Order and shortly before the infamous US Income Tax scheme came into being.

As most of us have learned by now, our country is no longer run by the people, It’s run by a Washington-Wall Street cartel, whose only goal is to make more money while reducing the population to mere serfs. Watch this interesting video:

I’m so sorry to disappoint all who wished to apply for the position, but New Orleans doesn’t employ a ‘sex assessor.’ That was a misprint. It should’ve read ‘tax assessor.’
---bet they had lots of applicants…from the New Orleans Times

This week’s useful resources…

Cool little free software for you...if you use online classified ads, this might be useful - download it here:

If you publish ezines, here’s another good resource (personally tested)

In previous issues we’ve weighed in on using member stores such as Sam’s Club and Costco…here’s another resource to consider. Know your cost per unit before you buy in bulk (cost divided by quantity or unit of weight). That figure isn’t always posted but use apps or online calculators that will do the math for you such as this freebie which features a Grocery Price Calculator:
Hire a virtual (free) assistant by setting up your own ‘shelf’ of your favorite products.

Other sites for savings to explore Free software and games Set a goal & chart your financial progress with this free financial planning tool.

Garden in a barrel…though not free, use it to make your own. Great for truly small space gardens and the yields can be impressive.

Get a few extra bucks by using these sites
Consign items-free search at:
List it at:

Find 2nd hand stores in your area by using these sites

Save money by ditching paper towels, using less soap…
· We use a roll of paper towels about every 6-8 weeks, instead, use microfiber cloths. They’re reusable and I like their TV pitchman!
· Using 1/8 or half the manufacturers recommended amount of dishwasher and washing machine soap will save money, it’s better for the environment and it will clean better and lengthen the life of your appliances…need any other reasons?

Manipulating the food supply could lead to social unrest-What to always keep in your pantry. With crop failures around the world and the demise of small farms in the USA due to government regulation (see last week’s issue of PMB) we’ve put together a short list of items you should always have on hand. We’ve also added some interesting videos to our Citizen Preparedness page at:

I am patient with stupidity, but not those who are proud of it.
--Edith Sitwell

Resources for Stockpiling and Disaster Preparation

Make Your Own Energy
Step-by-step guide reveals how to
make your own energy for $100 or less.

Terrific site for resources and green, eco-friendly goods

Don’t Get Caught With Your Pantry Down – the all time best book on family preparedness has been updated & now includes an online video segment as well. Highly recommended 11th Edition.


Flavorwire’s Which Future is Right For You?

So take control of humanity’s bleak horizon by figuring out which hellish future is best for you — because if there’s anything we’ve learned from dystopian literature, it’s that your preferences matter. Or, not.

What is the worst thing you’ve ever done?

A. Missed a day of work
B. If I told you that, I’d have to kill you
C. Asked a question
D. Used contraceptives
E. Stayed alive

Society should be governed by the rules of:
A. Communism
B. Anarchy
C. Tyranny
D. Mass weddings
E. Isolationism

You prefer getting the news from:

A. The next in command
B. I trust no one but myself (and sometimes not even myself)
C. Politically biased and/or government-censored periodicals
D. A pregnancy test
E. Anything beyond my own survival needs is irrelevant
What is your dream job?
A. Factory worker
B. Cowboy
C. What are dreams?
D. Baby-making machine
E. Wilderness expert
Rules are made to be:
A. Obeyed
B. Broken
C. Understood
D. Taught
E. There are no rules

What is the meaning of life?
A. Work
B. Havoc
C. Whatever I’m told it is
D. Making more life
E. There is no meaning

Which saying best summarizes your worldview:
A. Idle hands are the devil’s tools
B. Go West, young man
C. Ignorance is bliss
D. Go forth and multiply
E. The end is nigh

If you scored mostly A’s:
Individuality is an indulgence of the past. Man is a machine whose purpose is merely to work toward a greater good — or evil — unbeknownst to you. There is no such thing as free will, and pity the fool who makes the mistake of seeking it out. Embrace your irrelevance and expendability.
Recommended reading: Anthem (Ayn Rand), Neuromancer (William Gibson), Player Piano (Kurt Vonnegut), We (Yevgeny Zamyatin)

If you scored mostly B’s:
Stability and safety are the stuff of legend. The world is akin to the anarchic frontiers of the Wild West — but now with androids, hyper-violence, space travel, black markets, and increasingly destructive technology to boot. Don’t be a hero; hermits live longer.
Recommended reading: A Clockwork Orange (Anthony Burgess), Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (Philip K. Dick), Snow Crash (Neal Stephenson)

If you scored mostly C’s:
You know only what you are told — and anything beyond that is irrelevant, baseless, or downright toxic to your sheltered mind. An all-powerful government or private organization controls all information and activities, which means disobedience is pretty much a signed death wish.
Recommended reading: Nineteen Eighty-Four (George Orwell), Fahrenheit 451 (Ray Bradbury), The Giver (Lois Lowry)

If you scored mostly D’s:
Sex slaves, euthanization, genetic harvesting, baby vessels, and eugenics are all standard features of this progeny-dictated landscape. If you’re kept alive, don’t get comfortable — once a suitable offspring (or an entire brood of them) has been bred, you’re toast.
Recommended reading: The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood), Logan’s Run (William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson), Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)

If you scored mostly E’s:
There’s nothing left except you, a deadened wasteland, perhaps a few other roguish survivors, and a fatalistic shadow of impending extinction. Whether from cataclysmic warfare, natural disaster, supernatural apocalypse, or religious Armageddon, this would be the time to abandon all hope.
Recommended reading: A Canticle for Leibowitz (Walter M. Miller, Jr.), I Am Legend (Richard Matheson), A Boy and His Dog (Harlan Ellison), The Road (Cormac McCarthy)

Making Money Selling Used Books
Have you ever thought you’d like to start a business from home? Do you have some books laying around collecting dust? If you said yes to both questions, selling used books on the Internet may be just the ticket.

According to his biography at, Adam Bertram has been an avid online book seller for two years and has thousands of sales under his belt. He has a background in technology that has allowed him to excel in finding books to sell online. The author has generated tens of thousands of dollars buying used books that most people simply want to get rid of and has turned around to sell them for big money.

Read the rest of the piece & find other idea starters to create your own money generating venture at the BootStrap Biz tab at www.PoorManSurvival.Com
In the Poor Man’s 45 Ways to Make a Living Without a Job (On our Poor Man I CD) we talk about selling books and long time subscribers know that’s what I do, though I am rather specialized in that I sell how-to books primarily (very tough to find via scrounging thrift stores as the average US reader seems to enjoy how to make and raise a baby books or cheap romance types)…and as noted in a previous edition, more folks are buying material on electronic media…games, videos and the like as fewer people are willing to expend the energy in reading.
The Kindle reader and other ebook machines are becoming popular, but personally, I don’t want something that requires batteries and if I lose it, I’m not out $150 or more! Guess I’m old fashioned.

NAACP chief Ben Jealous lived up to his name when he noted the Tea Party's political success, saying, "We have to close the enthusiasm gap."

After Job Training, Still Scrambling for a Job
The Poor Man has been writing about the jobless ‘recovery’ for over a year now!

In what was beginning to feel like a previous life, Israel Valle had earned $18 an hour as an executive assistant to a designer at a prominent fashion label. Now, he was jobless and struggling to find work. He decided to invest in upgrading his skills.

It was February 2009, and the city work force center in Downtown Brooklyn was jammed with hundreds of people hungry for paychecks. His caseworker urged him to take advantage of classes financed by the federal government, which had increased money for job training. Upgrade your skills, she counseled. Then she could arrange job interviews.

For six weeks, Mr. Valle, 49, absorbed instruction in spreadsheets and word processing. He tinkered with his résumé. But the interviews his caseworker eventually arranged were for low-wage jobs, and they were mobbed by desperate applicants. More than a year later, Mr. Valle remains among the record 6.8 million Americans who have been officially jobless for six months or longer. He recently applied for welfare benefits.

“Training was fruitless,” he said. “I’m not seeing the benefits. Training for what? No one’s hiring.”

Parting Shots

“Are you prepared against organized evil?”

One of the newsletters I mentioned an issue or two back, American Preppers, sent a blurb out regarding the use of lethal force during times of chaos and social breakdown. The Poor Man has suggested that if and when such an event takes place, we wouldn’t count on having the police around for protection.

As it stands, the police are generally around ‘after-the-fact’ and are unable to prevent crime. Using New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina as an example, many of the police abandoned their post and returned home to help family members and who could blame them?

Most folks, and the newsletter commentary agreed, seem most worried about gangs as, they are considered by some, to be better armed than police. Although we lived outside of Phoenix proper, that was our chief concern while living in AZ. Gangs are very prevalent in AZ and CA and many police refuse to enter certain ‘gang zones.’

Last year I watched a TV documentary (perhaps on the History Channel) about the spread of gangs throughout the United States including the Washington DC and Chicago area (ask Mayor Daley how he’d protect citizens he wants to deprive of gun ownership). According to this report, gangs are a bigger threat than the Mafia ever represented and governments do little to stop them. The fact that our government has outlawed most drugs has made this activity very lucrative for gangs.

The Poor Man knows it is personal choice, and taking the life of another is not an easy decision, but rest assured, when it comes down to protecting a loved one, I won’t hesitate to pull the trigger.

If you choose to own weapons, I strongly urge you to take training and make use of frequent practice sessions at a range. Fumbling around for a safety release and ammo during a high tension situation is not a wise path for self protection. Most areas offer training classes and YouTube offers online video training as well. Here’s a sample, but keep in mind, watching is no substitute for doing!

Until we meet again, that’s the scoop of the week.
Yours for better living,
Bruce ‘The Poor Man’

Be sure to share this with a friend and send me your tips.

A Shall Planet Production…follow us on these networking sites!/bedavid

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Cut Your Summer Utilities, Gov't Whacks Consumers-Again

Bruce’s Poor Man Bulletin
Your choice for usable Urban Survival Resources

In This Issue:

· US State Dept kicks consumer ass
· Cut your summer utility bills
· 30 States initiate their rights against Fed using Nullification
· Things you didn’t know you could recycle
· New videos on the PM site
· Reader tips

“Just because it is the law doesn’t mean it’s just.”
--Father Berrigan, Vietnam War Protestor

Things you didn’t know you could recycle…

Several issues ago I mentioned I signed on to be an Eco Consultant for Green Irene and I have learned a lot from their extensive training and online library of information and videos. Green Irene has a wonderful fundraising program for schools, nonprofits, and other organizations…no cost and you set the time frame and they give your group its own website for ordering. For more information, go to: http://GreenIrene.Com/PoorMan

Last week, the Poor Man launched a local ewaste recycling drop-off center to assist battered women. We take in cell phones, printer cartridges, digital cameras and laptops. You might consider doing the same in your community. Here are some ways and resources to recycle you might not have known about.

Ink/Toner Cartridges:

Oil: Hotlines for every state can be found at

Appliances Either use the Goodwill group or visit

Athletic Shoes Nike offers a program, which turns shoes into playgrounds.

Clothing You can always donate them to local charities but consider many animal shelters use them as bedding.

Batteries Contact

You can always visit our
site for more useful tips.

For more green living tips, visit, or

Finally, although I’ve not made any progress on producing videos of my own (I need a partner…any takers) I have added a nice variety of videos to the site featuring how to get stuff free, coping with emergencies, the end of civilization and a whole bunch more…check it out. As soon as I figure how to add widget code, I have some good ones ready to go!

You’ll find several new articles posted at our site including one on freshwater fishing, keeping chickens in the city and how to make natural cleaners for the home – save money and your health…

Silence is golden…duct tape is silver

This Week’s Useful Resources
Lots of DIY online videos can be found at:

Six Reasons Why the Word ‘Natural” is Meaningless Food manufacturers enjoy circumventing food laws, read more at:

If you’re still using a garbage disposal instead of composting, clean the disposal by grinding up leftover lemons or coffee grounds (then use the coffee can to hold kitchen composting materials to be transferred later to your outdoor composting bin.

Speaking of compost…make your own garden soil vs. buying them at the garden center…two parts compost from shredded leaves (available free at many city recyling centers) and one part dirt. You can buy torn bags of mulch at many garden centers at a discount too; just remember to bring along a roll of duct tape!
Thanks to Diana for that tip – we’ll be sending a you a free copy of our Poor Man III CD rom!

Volunteer Techies will help you with questions on common computer problems – (why is it my computer challenges are never common)? Go here:

You can trade in electronics like old cell phones & Computers at or and get a charitable donation write-off with cash, or gift cards. We hear Costco, BestBuy and Sears have electronics trade-in programs too.

If we use one of the suggestions or resources you send in, you’ll get one of our Poor Man CDs free! Send to:

How come whenever my ship comes in, it’s leaking”--Dorothy Zbornak


Ways to Cut Your Summer Utility Bills
Fine-Tune Your Equipment

Arrange an HVAC inspection. Anyone can hire a certified technician for an annual check that their home’s heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system is operating at peak efficiency. Leaking ducts, for example, could reduce energy efficiency by up to 20%, says Ronnie Kweller, a spokeswoman for the Alliance to Save Energy. Inspections usually cost $50 to $100, but that could be offset by the energy savings over time.

Shop for size. Consumers in the market for a new room or window air conditioner should use Energy Star guidelines to determine how powerful a unit they need. A too-powerful unit not only wastes energy, it's also less effective at reducing humidity.

Keep it clean. Clean air filters monthly for central air and individual window or wall units. Dirt and dust hinder air flow, reducing efficiency.

Program the thermostat. Give the air conditioner a break during the work day. Shifting the settings to allow higher daytime temperatures could cut the average household’s electric bill by $180 a year, according to Energy Star.
Seek out incentives on appliances. Investing in a new energy-efficient unit can cut long-term bills -- and be cheaper upfront, too. Through the end of 2010, qualifying central air conditioners are eligible for a federal tax credit of 30% of the cost, including installation, up to a total of $1,500 for all projects. Plenty of states also still have rebates available under the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. A Maine resident, for example, can get $100 back on a qualifying central air conditioner, while Georgia offers $30 for room units and $99 on central units. Check for other government and utility deals in the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency.

Hunt Down Heat Sources

Seal up the house. Cooled air can leak through cracks along window and door frames. Invest in some caulk and weather-stripping to plug up these drafts. A home that’s properly insulated and sealed improves energy efficiency by up to 20% year-round, according to the Alliance to Save Energy. (Insulation materials are also eligible for the 30% energy efficiency federal tax credit, up to $1,500 for all improvements combined.)

Avoid chores. The hotter the space, the harder an air conditioner must work to keep things cool. Limit the use of heat-generating appliances such as the oven, dishwasher and clothes dryer during the daytime hours when temperatures are hottest, says Steve Rosenstock, manager of energy solutions for the Edison Electric Institute, an industry group. "That just makes more of a load for your air conditioner,” he says.

Change light bulbs. Swapping incandescent bulbs for compact fluorescents can cut a home electric bill, Kweller says. Switching one incandescent for a CFL saves $35 in energy costs over the projected 10-year life of the bulb. Not only do CFLs use less energy than conventional bulbs, but they also generate less heat.

Close the blinds. Rooms get hotter without shades or curtains to block the sunlight, especially with south- and west-facing windows. Put this idea to work more effectively with insulated window treatments.

Use fans. A breeze makes the room feel a few degrees cooler. Just be sure to turn it off when leaving. "Fans cool people, not rooms," Kweller says.

Unplug. Gadgets like a cellphone charger or microwave suck energy -- and generate heat -- as long as they're attached to a power source. Standby power for appliances not in use typically accounts for 5% to 10% of residential electricity use, according to the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Plug those devices into a power strip that can be turned off when not in use.

Assess Utility Suppliers
Check alternate suppliers. Residents of states where the electric industry is deregulated can shop around for their energy provider, says Rosenstock. Depending on the options, some residents could save 5% to 15% a month. Many alternative companies use renewable energy, so they're much less dependent on volatile oil, coal and natural gas prices. Most will also fix billing rates for a year or more -- a bonus if energy prices creep up. The state’s public service commission should keep a list of options. Just be aware that most providers require a commitment of at least a year and charge a hefty fee for ducking out early, Rosenstock says.

Consider time-of-use plans. A growing number of electric companies are offering so-called time-of-use plans, which offer lower rates for energy consumption during off-peak hours (usually from midevening to early morning). The catch is that users often pay more for peak-hours use, so consider the daily schedule before signing up. Arizona-based SRP, for example, regularly charges 10.64 to 12.12 cents per kilowatt hour during July and August, based on the amount used in a billing period. On the time-of-use plan, it charges a flat 21.30 cents for on-peak hours (1 p.m. to 8 p.m. weekdays) and 6.65 cents during the rest of the day, on weekends and holidays.

Fix the bill. Ask the utility company about fixed-bill plans, which charge the same amount every month for a set period, regardless of electricity use. Users pay a premium rate per kilowatt hour to hedge against price increases and seasonal spikes, so make sure to crunch the numbers to confirm the savings, Kweller says. Also, keep in mind that these plans periodically reconcile, which can leave users with a big bill if they've used more than the supplier anticipated. Check with the utility to see if it alerts customers using more power than they anticipated and whether users can pay extra as they go.

Read more: 13 Simple Ways to Lower Your Electric Bill - Spending - Deals -

Breaking news…
States are Refusing to Enforce Fed Laws which violate our Constitution…taming illegal acts of the feds!

Taming the government was Jefferson’s idea. This legal process is a reserve weapon states are beginning to use as a legal process to avoid Obama’s national healthcare program and other acts which violate states rights.
Nullification is a legal theory that a U.S. State has the right to nullify, or invalidate, any federal law which that state has deemed unconstitutional. The theory is based on a view that the sovereign States formed the Union, and as creators of the compact hold final authority regarding the limits of the power of the central government. Under this, the compact theory, the States and not the Federal Bench are the ultimate interpreters of the extent of the national Government's power. A more extreme assertion of state sovereignty than nullification is the related action of secession, by which a state terminates its political affiliation with the Union.

One of the earliest and most famous examples is to be found in the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions, a protest against the Alien and Sedition Acts. In these resolutions, authors Thomas Jefferson and James Madison argued that the states are the ultimate interpreters of the Constitution and can "interpose" to protect state citizens from the operation of unconstitutional national laws.

While some interests in northern states occasionally considered the possibility of secession after Jefferson's party gained control of the federal government in the years after 1801, for example at the Hartford Convention, the idea of nullification increasingly became associated with the southern states as a means of protecting the institution of slavery. The most famous statement of the theory of nullification, authored by John C. Calhoun, appeared in the South Carolina Exposition and Protest of 1828. Four years later, during the Nullification Crisis, South Carolina undertook to nullify a federal tariff law and a subsequent federal bill authorizing the use of force against the state.

The Nullification Crisis was a sectional crisis during the presidency of Andrew Jackson created by South Carolina's 1832 Ordinance of Nullification. This ordinance declared, by the power of the State itself, that the federal Tariff of 1828 and the federal Tariff of 1832 were unconstitutional and therefore null and void within the sovereign boundaries of South Carolina. The controversial, and highly protective, Tariff of 1828 (also called the "Tariff of Abominations") was enacted into law during the presidency of John Quincy Adams. Opposed in the South and parts of New England, the tariff’s opponents expected that the election of Jackson as President would result in the tariff being significantly reduced.

I also believe nullification (as per Jefferson and Madison's nullification of the Alien and Sedition Acts) is the proper way to fight an over-reaching Federal government. However, anyone supporting the proposed 28th Amendment should get out and promote it, get the backing of their fellow citizens and put pressure on the elected elitists. (

You’ve heard the Poor Man rants about how we the people no longer control the government. The government has become corporatist. Corporations and special interest groups that provide the campaign funds are who control our elected elites. Learn more:

The Supreme Court is not the final
authority in matters of constitutional law.
The People are

Putting The Small Farmer Out Of Business
The Federal government has long been legislating in an effort to eliminate the small farmer, and increasingly local governments are doing so as well.
The government’s efforts—under the guise of making our food safer—have all but put off limits good, healthful foods like whole raw milk and truly organic meats and vegetables grown by local farmers. The Federal government, through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and other alphabet soup organizations are constantly banning natural, good-for-you foods and inventing new restrictions that hurt the small farmer for the benefit of Monsanto, Archer Daniels Midland and other large farm entities…(too much government is crushing everything productive in our society)!

Another kick in the pants for US Citizens from the government…

Today marks another example of the government showing us how quickly it is willing and able to make changes. Effective today, the United States Department of State is increasing fees for consular services across the board-- things like visas, passports, and notary services.

The state department made this announcement just two weeks ago; the thing that caught my eye and sparked this letter today is their new $450 fee for renunciation of US citizenship.

This is a brand new fee that has never been imposed before. Apparently the number of Americans lining up at embassies around the world to renounce their citizenship is exploding so rapidly that the State Department had to formalize the process and tack on a fee... this, of course, on top of the 30% exit tax.

Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other. – President Ronald Reagan

Reader Tip & Parting thoughts

Cut hot water heating costs by installing a simple on-off switch on the water heater electric circuit allowing us to turn off the heater when we retire at night or during the day when not in use…install a timer if you like and set it for 30-45 minutes before you shower. You can also get more off peak power ideas from

I recently read about a woman who keeps ducks in her backyard and uses a wading pool for them near her garden. Every few days she empties the pool into her garden which, because of the duck doo doo, makes it a natural fertilizer.

Speaking of gardens…we’ve been able to eat the first of our cucumbers and many tomatoes will be ready this week…the corn is past knee high and will make some fine eating and our rain barrels have worked well as we seldom need to use a hose or city water!

Thanks to Tina for sharing the tips…she’ll get a copy of our newest Poor Man Survival III Urban Resources CD in the mail with our compliments. If you have something to share and we use it…you’ll get a copy of one of our Poor Man CDS…just send an email to with ‘tips’ in the subject line!

That’s the roundup for this issue…happy trails till we meet again.

Yours for better living,
Bruce “The Poor Man”

Please share this with a friend!

A Shallow Planet Production

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sneaky Grocery Store Tips, 10 Great Products Still Made in USA

Bruce’s Poor Man Bulletin
Your choice for Usable Urban Survival Resources

In This Issue:

· How to take over a country without firing a shot
· New facebook service-create your own free storefront
· Deficit hysteria squeezes middle class
· Extra income resources-netting extra cash
· 12-acre buy or sell industrial site
· Free eBay video tutorials

At a sex education rally in a Chicago High School, an abstinence program advocate told the teens that if they felt a sexual urge coming on, ‘just eat a Snickers bar, you’ll be fine! The state of US Education…suggested perhaps by Mars Candy?

Instant Rip-Off(s)

During the past 20 years I’ve distributed thousands of scratch-off state lottery tickets to attendees of my seminars and college lectures (good tool for building & rewarding audience participation) and as ‘stocking stuffers’ and birthday gifts.

My standing joke to attendees was that if anyone won more than $100 we would split the winnings…guess what? In all those years, no one ever won more than $35; most often they turned out to be instant rip-off tickets.

State lotteries have a worse percentage of payouts than casinos so if you’re into gambling, a casino is your better bet!

The Poor Man started an ewaste recycling drop-off center program this week to help battered women. Folks who drop off old printer cartridges, cell phones, digital cameras and laptops will receive a variety of rewards and the items will be recycled through various charities that I contracted with. Obviously, this is available to MI residents…email me if interested in dropping something off at:

EBay will be making an announcement later today of even more changes affecting sellers beginning in September. Supposedly, these will be the last of the ‘never-ending-changes eBay will implement for the year…see the free eBay tutorial link below.

Finally, be sure to read the guest editorial from Kitty Werth Ann called After America-No Place to Go. You’ll find it on our Guest Column tab at the PoorManSurvival.Com site!

Resources we like

Get your free how-to video tutorial on using ebay
--I gave a set of these to my sister-in-law to use & she was ecstatic. I’ve taught courses at community colleges on how to make money from eBay and developed my own course, but as we all know…

eBay frequently changes its rules & fees…
That is why most eBay courses today are outdated.
24-part video allows you to watch over the shoulder of Francis Ochoco
on eBay in real time. Signup required. You will be given an opportunity to become a reseller to earn commissions as well…if you’re involved with eBay, this could be a profitable add-on product for you.

American Preppers Network
Interesting clearinghouse of websites devoted to various how-to, self sufficiency resources and sites…of which the Poor Man is now a member.

Free downloads…the Poor Man encourages entrepreneurs so get these freebies to help promote your business
No signup and no cost - Just 30 HOT
products to kickstart your business.

Enjoy Your Oatmeal w/ This easy recipe…was a favorite over the 4th


1 cup cooked oatmeal
1 cup crunch peanut butter
1 medium egg
½ cup sugar (try brown sugar as an alternative)
½ cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Grease an 8x8 baking pan. Mix all ingredients together and spread into the pan. Bake 30 minutes, cool 15 minutes, then cut into squares.

Plain and simple, the news has abdicated its commitment to be the watchdog for society. Instead they advance their own agendas or those of their sponsors, pander to special interest groups, promote fear and editorialize with no basis in fact. This means you have to dig deeper and discern the truth for yourself — for if not you, who will get you the news?

HGR’s We Sell Everything - 12 acre site
A new subscriber suggested this place & it’s might interesting…you can buy or sell industrial related goods on their site or at their facility in the Cleveland, OH area. Mostly industrial BUT, for instance, you can pick up a 250-gal water tank for under $25 (they deliver too). Worth a peek.

Spend $50 & download Quicken WillMaker Plus - Free!
Nice Deal for Poor Man subscribers…
This month, get Nolo's bestselling software, Quicken WillMaker Plus - free! That's right, when you spend $50 at Nolo's Online Store, you'll automatically receive a free download of the #1 bestselling estate planning software as a thank you for choosing Nolo from now until July 22nd, 2010. Use Quicken WillMaker Plus to prepare your will, power of attorney documents, and living will, as well as documents for executors, all in one easy-to-use software package. Plus, as a Nolobriefs subscriber, you can use coupon code T780 to get 10% off your order. But hurry! The coupon expires on August 1st, 2010.
Read on for more tips from Nolo's website:

Thanks…the following is a tip from a new subscriber!

50 Sneaky Grocery Store Tricks That Trim Your Wallet and Pad Your Waistline


Want to Net Some Extra Cash?

Nicole Woolsey Biggart, PhD

Historically, a bad economy is good for direct-sales companies, such as Mary Kay, Avon, Fuller Brush, Tupperware, The Pampered Chef and others, that rely on independent, work-from-home salespeople to sell their products and services. In troubled times, more people work for these companies because of job layoffs or because they want to earn extra income.

Our recent economic downturn has been no exception, with many direct-sales companies reporting sharp increases in new recruits, people who are eager to become their own bosses and earn income from both commissions and/or bonuses based on recruiting others into their ranks.

However, although recruiting numbers may be up, the Direct Selling Association (DSA) reports a downturn in overall sales to consumers in recent years -- $29 billion in 2008 from a 2006 peak of $32 billion.

Result: A greater number of salespeople competing for a smaller chunk of business.
While making a go at direct selling could be harder than ever, it still is a good opportunity for certain people -- could it be for you?


At any given time, some 15 million Americans work in direct sales.
Product sales commissions usually range between 25% and 50% of the retail price. In some companies, you can earn an additional 3% to 5% commission on sales made by others you recruit.
Yet most people who try direct sales soon give up. After expenses -- including the cost of buying inventory and transportation to make sales calls -- most people wind up earning $10 to $15 an hour, typically working fewer than 20 hours a week. These people earn a median wage of $2,400 annually, according to the DSA.
In rare cases, those who are very good at selling can make $30,000 annually by working a 40-hour week. Only about 10% manage to make direct sales a full-time job.

Ultimately, these jobs are all about selling -- and you will make real money only if you are an effective salesperson. Companies do not provide a list of potential sales contacts, so most people who succeed in direct sales already have a large social network.

Those who do well also tend to have the "right" personality. If they are not outgoing, they are at least comfortable knocking on doors or calling people they may not know... have a "thick skin" that can handle frequent rejection... and are self-motivated and disciplined.


Before you choose a direct-selling company to represent, consider the following...
Be product-practical. At the very least, you should choose a well-known, established company that sells products you know about, have a passion for or would personally use. Your passion for, or knowledge of, a specific product will make you a more effective salesperson. To find a potential fit, visit, where you can check off your interests and learn about appropriate companies. The best direct-sales products tend to be those that benefit from personal in-home demonstrations.

Examples: Knives (shoppers can’t experiment with them in retail stores)... cosmetics (it’s impractical and can be intimidating to try them out in public)... and water purifiers (in regions where water quality is an issue).

Talk to veterans. Research a company’s reputation with an online search. Look for Web communities of sellers.
Examples: or
You also can check the Better Business Bureau ( to look for filed complaints.

If you are interested in working for a specific company, ask to be put in touch with several of its longtime direct sellers. New recruits tend to be enthusiastic but lack the experience to be realistic about their success. Speak to people who have had direct-selling experience with that company for years. Ask these veterans about the difficulty finding customers... their opinion of the products... and the company’s payment process. (Direct selling is a cash business, and money should flow back to sellers quickly -- or they should be able to keep their share of the receipts.)

Look for DSA membership. Companies that belong to the DSA ( must subscribe to minimal industry standards. These include a "buyback" policy if you decide to quit the business, which allows you to return unopened and unsold products purchased within the prior 12 months for 90% of the price you paid for them (so you are not stuck paying for inventory you can’t sell). Another industry standard is having payment structures based chiefly on sales to consumers, not from recruiting other sellers (so your main job is not to recruit more members but to sell goods).

Most companies require new recruits to purchase an initial startup kit -- typically for $100 or less -- that includes a sample inventory of their most sellable products, "how-to" information, and brochures and materials for customers.

Avoid working for any company, including members of the DSA, that charge more than $150 for a startup kit. Good direct-selling companies make money by getting you into a position to sell, not by loading you down with products that sit in your garage.

Nicole Woolsey Biggart, PhD, former dean of the Graduate School of Management and professor of management and sociology at University of California, Davis. An expert in social network industries, she is author of Charismatic Capitalism: Direct Selling Organizations in America (University of Chicago).

RELATED STORY: Launch a free storefront on facebook complete with automated check out and more. Learn more by going to:

Resources for Stockpiling and Disaster Preparation

Make Your Own Energy
Step-by-step guide reveals how to
make your own energy for $100 or less.

Terrific site for resources and green, eco-friendly goods

Don’t Get Caught With Your Pantry Down – the all time best book on family preparedness has been updated & now includes an online video segment as well. Highly
recommended 11th Edition.

Fedhealth's 282-page eBook helps families and businesses "be aware... be prepared... and have a plan" for most types of emergencies and disasters.

There are more Americans employed in government than there are manufacturing and construction. It's been that way since 2007 and it's getting worse. Our manufacturing base has been hollowed out and shipped overseas by the same Wall Street pirates who tell us Americans are too lazy to do these jobs..however, see the story below:

Made in USA: 10 Great Products Still Made Here
Conventional wisdom says U.S. companies have shuttered their factories and moved manufacturing abroad for cheap labor. During the recession, 2 million manufacturing jobs vanished. Here’s the story you don’t hear: The United States is still the world’s largest manufacturing economy, producing $1.6 trillion of goods each year, or 21 percent of global production. That’s nearly as much as Japan (13 percent) and China (12 percent) combined.;main-promo
Government Intervention Never Ends-Editorial by Adam Bitely
Every action a person takes in the United States is regulated by the government. Many of these regulations go unnoticed. But think about every action you take, and the bureaucratic agency that is regulating it. From brushing your teeth, to watering your lawn, the government has intruded into your life and regulated every action you take. But how did we end up in a society that has allowed itself to be regulated across the board?

We live in an age where the government fears the people. And rightfully so. They hustle our paychecks, bailout zombie corporations against the wishes of the public, and send our money overseas to pointless causes such as bailouts for Palestinian mortgages. Clearly, this government has taken many actions that are not supported by the people that pay for them
More at:

Deficit Hysteria Means The Middle Class Is About To Get Squeezed By New Taxes…the Poor Man has predicted this for nearly a year!

Higher Tax Rates for All
If you're in the camp that thinks the deficit is still a non-issue, and that the US can't possibly default on its debt, then this will be maddening to you.
You may have been led to believe that only individuals in the top two brackets will face higher federal income taxes when the Bush cuts go bye-bye. Not true! Unless Congress takes action and President Obama goes along, rates will go up for everyone -- not just a sliver of the wealthiest Americans.

The current six rate brackets of 10%, 15%, 25%, 28%, 33% and 35% will be replaced by five new brackets with the higher rates of 15%, 28%, 31%, 36% and 39.6%. Just a few months ago, it seemed like a safe bet that Congress would make a fix to keep the existing 10%, 15%, 25% and 28% rate brackets to help out lower and middle-income folks. That bet is now looking iffy.,gld,uup,tlt,tbt,^gspc,^dji

On related note about our deficit…

Washington hypocritters who bitch about the deficit conveniently ignore:
· We have spent more than $700 billion in Iraq alone since the war began; it will easily cost American taxpayers $1 trillion before we leave there.
· The Pentagon budget for 2010 is $693 billion — more than all other discretionary spending programs combined. America spends 44% of the entire world's military budget. Surely, some other countries can pick up the spending for their own defense.

In that regard, the Poor Man suggests…
Hope for the Best and Prepare for the Worst...

Until and unless the parasites — oh, did I say parasites? I meant politicians — in Washington actually remember who pays their salaries and start doing their best rather than their worst, you might want to prepare for the worst. Those preparations may include...

1. Own Gold & Silver. If our nation continues to spend more than it brings in, we will follow Greece and Europe down the road to a currency crisis.
2. Get Out of Debt. If this country is headed for a serious financial crunch, you don't want debt hanging over your head. You want cash in the bank along with precious metals in the vault and/or goods to barter with.
3. Start Prepping for the Worst. You can prepare for whatever emergencies life throws your way. And if we have a really big crash, the government might not be there to save your fat behind. Consider following the recommendations in my book, "The Poor Man’s Survival CD Packages" The advice covers everything from money to power supplies to guns to canned goods.

>>>>>>>><<<<<<<<<<< California requires a warning label on all packages containing lead. This holds true for bullets. Their label: “This product contains lead & may be hazardous to your health”

Poor Man’s Parting Shot!
How to take over a country without firing a shot

Few people expect silver prices to rise during summer months; normally a quiet time for precious metals…watch for a potential surprise in a rally for precious metals…that’s what my coin dealer friends are suggesting…perhaps because the US is in a bad economic state with paper money close to its final debasement?

Historically, when a currency becomes so diluted that its populace and creditors no longer have faith in its fiat money, a country begins to fail. Counterfeiting is one way to debase a currency and our treasury department is continually changing the look and security features of the dollar.

When our government backed the Shah of Iraq, we lovingly sold him a printing press – the kind we used to print our currency. When the Shah was toppled, the fundamentalists of that country began printing US $100 bills in earnest; hence the many changes in our money.

Nowadays, we don’t need to worry about foreigners debasing our currency. Why worry when our own government does it for us. Debased currency and inflation is good for the treasury as it repays the national debt from cheaper dollars and fiat money becomes a hidden tax on US citizens who are forced to pay higher prices for goods and services (though, in today’s climate, few get matching pay raises).

My other thought of course, is for me to take over the satellites and cable systems which control electronic funds transfers and GPS…once I have them under my control, I will call the shots! Did I hear microwave relay systems in my future?

That’s it for this week. As always, we appreciate the tips & resources that you share.

Yours for better living,
Bruce ‘The Poor Man’

Please forward this to a friend!

A Shallow Planet Production

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Why No One is Hiring, Buying a Home Generator Tips

Poor Man’s Recession Survival Bulletin
Your choice for usable Urban Survival Resources

In This Issue:

· More signs of double-dip recession
· Buying a home generator
· Prospects for government worker retirement fades
· Why no one is hiring
· To survive you need to be self sufficient
· More ways to stretch food budgets, bulk foods

"The two big issues with consumers right now are employment growth and income growth, and they're not seeing much of either.” George Pipas, Ford Motor Co.'s top sales analyst.”

Why No One is Hiring

I’ve been a speaker at dozens of Business Conferences around the country over the years. I always chuckle when a government agency, (federal, state, or local) says it’s there to help folks launch a business through their ‘one stop business centers.”

What they’re really saying is we’ll show you all of the forms, permits, fees and taxes we’ll burden you with when you start a business…depending on what kind of business you start, you’ll also face mountains of rules and regulations designed to keep your profits low.

Ask any lawyer or financial planner…the biggest obstacle to wealth building and job creation is the government, which is one of the reasons why so many multi-national corporations choose to incorporate offshore and manufacture goods overseas where litigation costs won’t kill a business. They pay little or no US taxes but reap the profits.

As one wag puts it, “governments normally ignore corporations but they look at citizens as cows with teats which can be milked over and over again.”

The cost of medical insurance, workers compensation, taxes and other perks makes US businesses less competitive in the global marketplace which is why so many good jobs are offshored, why so many companies will only hire part time, why so few multi-nationals pay US taxes, etc. All of this discourages people from starting a business and/or hiring someone.

Because this has been a ‘jobless recovery,’ you might be in peril if you’ve ignored our past few issues, which have warned about the ‘new’ recession. Consider, for example:

Signs of a double-dip recession are flashing everywhere. And I do mean EVERYWHERE. If You're Not Taking Action, I Believe You're Making a Big Mistake!
In just the past few days, we’ve learned:

• New home sales imploded 33 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 300,000 units. That's the lowest ever recorded!
• Durable goods orders tanked 1.1 percent in May, while housing construction skidded 10 percent.
• Consumer confidence plunged to 52.9 in June, according to the Conference Board. That was a huge drop from 62.7 in May and well below the 62.5 that economists were expecting
• The Dallas Fed's gauge of manufacturing activity dropped to -4 percent from 2.9 percent. The Chicago Fed's activity index fell to 0.21 from 0.25. The Richmond Fed's index fell to 23 from 26, while the Philadelphia Fed's index plunged to 8 from 21.4, the worst reading in 10 months.
The message - This isn't some isolated, regional downturn. It's one that's spreading to every corner of the United States.
• The Economic Cycle Research Institute's Weekly Leading Index is falling off a cliff. Its growth rate just fell to NEGATIVE 6.9 percent, the worst reading in a year and far below the high of POSITIVE 28.5 percent in October. The last time this index tanked this much, recession struck within a few months.

Buying a Home Generator

Having a generator is always a good idea, especially if you live in storm prone areas. America’s power grid isn’t what she used to be and it’s in danger of overload. Here are some pointers we’ve compiled on buying a home generator.

Many might argue getting a generator is counter to the free energy derived from solar and wind as it eats up fossil fuels. Yes, it does. However, installing enough solar and wind equipment is expensive and beyond the reach of many and for most a generator is a good back up.

A 5,000-watt or eight-kilowatt generator is probably the smallest unit I’d go with. This will keep your fridge, lights, heat, laptop and even a TV going until power is restored. Get an electrician to install a manual transfer switch, which changes over power from your electric service to your generator. Some newer models have designs to make this easier to do yourself.

If you have a large home with higher than normal heating or cooling needs, you might need a bigger generator. Also, if you rely on a pump to raise water from a well or to run a basement sump pump, you might need a more powerful 10-12-kW generator.

Typically, generators use natural gas, propane, gasoline or diesel fuel so your first consideration will be to determine which is most abundant in your region AND which fuel can be stored for long periods of time. For instance, gasoline will last 90-days and you can add products such as Stab-il to prolong its lifespan.

With proper maintenance (you should fire it up once a month), a diesel generator can last 40 years (but they cost more). A 20-gal diesel fuel tank will run 30 hours or so. Look for units, which will run at least 5-6 hours. Gasoline powered systems are good on average 20 years.

For larger units you should consider professional installation and consider those added costs in your estimating. Reliable brands we like include whole house brands such Generac and Cummins can run your entire home and are often connected directly to a natural gas supply. These larger units can set you back $5000 or more.

A Troy-Bilt 5500-watt generator is another good brand and is portable and handy for such tasks as working in the field. It has a Briggs & Stratton engine, a 5-gal fuel tank, weighs 155 lbs and will run for 10 hours at half load. Other reliable brands include Honda and Coleman.

Solar powered generators are also available but not inexpensive but then again, you won’t worry about running out of fuel. I saw this one on eBay…Power Source 1800 will supply up to twelve hours of uninterrupted backup power for a small office, and up to eight hours of runtime for essential home appliances and small electronics during a power outage…cost was $2000!

Another option for quick emergencies is the power inverter, which converts direct current from your car battery to standard A/C. These can be found in local stores but the best prices I’ve found have been on eBay. Get a unit with at least 3500 watts. Odds are if you look on Craigslist or in your local paper, you can find one used at a reasonable price.

Feel free to share this with family and friends.

Every year in the US, 8000 people are seriously injured by toothpicks!

Hot off the Press…

Solar Aero's bladeless wind turbine
A research company in New Hampshire recently announced the patent of their bladeless wind turbine, which is based on a patent issued to Nikola Tesla in 1913. The Fuller Wind Turbine developed by Solar Aero has only one rotating part, the turbine-drives


An earthship is a sustainable home that is powered by the sun wind.
It is able to process waste and produce food, it has a moderate temperature all year round.
They are built from material that some would consider refuse but will stand up to nature well. Check out the inside scoop at:
far from impossible that the price of gold could soon go above $5000…it’s regarded as an alternative to paper money….
--New York Times Columnist Martin Hutchinson-May 14
A Wisconsin man wanting a cigarette reached for his lighter but mistakenly grabbed his .25 semi-auto pistol & instead of firing up a smoke, he shot a hole through his hand! See the other story below & you’ll agree we need mandatory gun training in the USA…

Resources for Stockpiling and Disaster Preparation

Make Your Own Energy
Step-by-step guide reveals how to
make your own energy for $100 or less.

Terrific site for resources and green, eco-friendly goods

Don’t Get Caught With Your Pantry Down – the all time best book on family preparedness has been updated & now includes an online video segment as well. Highly recommended 11th Edition.


To Survive the Fall of America
You Must Become More Self-Sufficient

The more self-sufficient and independent you are, the more likely you will survive

Taking the worst-case scenario into account imagine a world where the dollar is worthless — if you can even gain access to your dollar accounts. How are you going to buy gas for your car, food for your table, rent? In this scenario, it will be everyone for themselves, so how are you going to survive?

“It’s not going to be like the 1930s, it’s going to be different. The similarity is going to be a massive drop in the general standard of living, and I call it the Greater Depression.”

The essential, life sustaining things you’ll need:
· A roof over our heads
· Food on the table
· Source of water
· Waste removal
· A source of income or barter
· Health/Medical care
The necessary things we need to be productive:
· Electricity
· Internet
· Phone
· Postal/Delivery system
· Transportation
Number one on your agenda should be food and water. Without them, you die. How are you at hunting and fishing? Water can easily be stored if you have the space…do you have a pool or storage drums?
Health and medical issues vary for each individual. If there’s life sustaining medicine you need, make sure you have an abundant supply. Learn how to be your own doctor whenever possible.

A source of income or barter will certainly help you to survive. That means you need to be your own business. You need to be able to supply a skill, a product, or a resource that other people need. If cash no longer is in existence then you can barter your stuff for other people’s stuff. My guess is that the handyman is going to be very successful when things fall apart.

You’ll find idea-starters for small cottage industry style businesses you can start at our BootStrap Biz category on our site. Feel free to send me your ideas or real life experience for such enterprises.

Check out this site:

A cliché come to life. A 19-year old man couldn’t figure out why his gun was jammed. You guessed it, he looked down the barrel to find the source of the problem. He soon discovered the gun worked fine after he shot a hole in his face…and who says stupidity isn’t a contagious disease?
State and local gov't workers' job security fades
For years, most people who worked for state or local governments accepted a fact of life: Their pay wasn't great. The job security was.
Now that's gone, too.

States and municipalities are facing gaping budget gaps. Many have responded by slashing services, raising taxes and, for the first time in decades, making deep job cuts.

And public employees should brace themselves: Some economists say the job cuts could worsen in the second half of the year.

Book Review
Three Felonies A Day:
How The Feds Target The Innocent
by Harvey A. Silverglate

This is a timely book about the breakdown of the rule of law in the United States.
I got an advance copy & only recently have had time to read it…

Individual freedom and the rule of law is gone in America. Oh, they haven't come for you yet? You haven't broken the law? Well, Harvey Silverglate proves in Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent that the Feds (U.S. prosecuting attorneys) target the innocent. He says the, "federal prosecutors are abusing their power by using the criminal law to prosecute law abiding citizens..." They are seizing illegal power by twisting marginal and highly questionable interpretations of criminal law. You can find it on eBay and Amazon or at a local bookstore.

Recycle The Whole House
Recycling is expanding from newspapers and bottles to entire houses as foreclosures, tax credits and landfill costs prompt businesses and non-profit organizations to salvage materials from old homes.

According to USA TODAY, stores are springing up to sell used lumber, appliances, cabinetry and flooring.

Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit that builds and rehabs affordable homes, has 550 such retail outlets, called “ReStores.” Mark Andrews, Habitat’s director of U.S. operations, says the number is growing “almost daily.” He expects an additional 100 stores in the next year.

“It’s exploded all over the country” in the past five to seven years, says green building expert David Johnston about the trend toward deconstructing, rather than demolishing, homes.

Owners get a double benefit — a tax credit for donating goods and peace of mind for not dumping into landfills.

Pity the blind, for they cannot see. Pity the deaf, for they cannot hear. But what can you do for the stupid, who will not read, listen, or cannot comprehend. –Unknown

Yet Again with the National ID
Fresh from their defeat in forcing national identity papers on us with REAL ID, the feds are trying once more. Their plea this time isn’t terrorism but immigration—though they’re pretty much the same, according to the State.
Introduced in 2005 to combat the waves of terrorists thronging our shores, REAL ID was supposed to thwart the bad guys by transforming our drivers’ licenses into a national ID card. We’d have submitted this card on demand to government’s agents—as do the victims in totalitarian regimes. Never mind that “almost no empirical research has been undertaken to clearly establish how identity tokens can be used as a means of preventing terrorism,” according to Privacy International, or that “terrorists have traditionally moved across borders using tourist visas,” unless they “are equipped with legitimate identification cards.” The 9/11 hijackers and the Madrid bombers, respectively, provide two recent examples…
The Poor Man has written extensively on the efforts of those in government who wish to force a national ID program on the serfs in this country…see previous bulletins for more.

Double Your Grocery Savings-Parting Ideas from the Poor Man

We’ve found that many supermarkets are willing to double your coupons due to competition. With 10% of a household budget devoted to groceries (I don’t know how large families do it), consumers are more determined than ever to get biggest bag for the buck. To find supermarkets in your area willing to go the extra mile on your behalf, go to:

…Other ways to save. Membership clubs aren’t the only place to buy in bulk. Many supermarkets will offer the same bulk savings to you if you just ask the manager about ‘case pricing.’

That case of green beans can now become a bargain but to stretch the budget and variety, band together with neighbors to form your own buying club and split the cost.

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut when cooking bulk foods. Find new ways to cook while stretching that budget with free sites such as
Enter the ingredients you have on hand and you’ll get links to meals and recipes you can make…pretty darn easy.

For this week…that’s all folks! Be sure to check our OldBookNook site for recent additions to our self-sufficiency collection including Living Off the Grid, The Backyard Blacksmith and others.

Bruce “The Poor Man”


A Shallow Planet Production

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