Bruce’s Poor Man Recession Bulletin
Your choice for urban survival resources
In This Issue:
1. States of Disunion-worst states for retirees/citizens
2. States going broke in 2011
3. Rise of the police state-surveillance increases
4. Avoiding tow truck scams
5. Get free magazine subscriptions
6. The 4th branch of government
7. How to be a mediator-another potential source of revenue
He who does not have a dog to hunt with - must use a cat. --Brazilian Proverb
More market mayhem? 60 Minutes Hit it on the Head
American mainstream media has become rather servile in the past decade. Gone are the in-depth, microphone-in-your-face interview exposing corporate and political corruption. The reason is simple, we’ve gone from 250 media corporations in the 70s to about five conglomerates today and they cooperate on how they fashion what is “news” or info-tainment as most of them term it.
On Sunday, Dec. 19th 60 Minutes (link below to program) showed a brief glimpse of what they used to be with an interview and segment of how state governments are going broke, playing games with their budget numbers (something ordinary businesses would be jailed for) and how there gold-plated pension funds are bankrupting them and there is little hope of any kind of bailout from Washington. http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/pubs/mcc/videos.aspx
It’s nice to see vindication for what the Poor Man has been writing for the past year and half…folks, if mainstream media is awakening to the coming crash, you know it’s bad!
They are already rioting in England, Greece and other countries. Residents in South Korea are finding bomb shelters if the nut case who runs N Korea gets his way…it’s not a pretty picture and as we’ve warned for the past year, you never know which crisis will suddenly get out of hand and send civilization reeling.
As Greece faced a debt crisis, the government passed a series of strict austerity measures, including taxes hikes and cutting public sector pay.
The move sparked angry protests, strikes and riots across the country as unemployment skyrocketed and the crisis spread to other European nations. The move also incited a rush to online dictionaries from those searching for a definition.
Austerity, the 14th century noun defined as "the quality or state of being austere" and "enforced or extreme economy," set off enough searches that named it as its Word of the Year for 2010, the dictionary's editors announced Monday
Governments at all levels have financially raped the American public for decades, feathered their respective nests and it appears it is finally coming home to roost. Many of us would simply like to ‘make government disappear’ as these pirates, along with their corporate masters, have been hell-bent on a path of ruination of our great country.
States such as NJ, IL, MI and others which are going bankrupt have more tax scams than a boardwalk hustler.
After watching the 60 Minutes segment, my wife quipped ‘is this a sneak peak of what will be before Wiki leaks it?” You’ll find several links to video clips of the coming disaster at the tail end of this week’s episode.
Based on what you’ve seen and/or experienced during the past decade, do you still trust the government to do what is right? Have you taken the necessary steps to protect yourself from food & fuel shortages, social unrest and possible martial law as we‘ve seen in Europe?
Is the government scam finally being exposed to the world? I know I get more than a bit passionate about what our government has been doing to this country…I truly worry how my children will survive with what’s left of this country.
If you’ve not already read Martin Gross’ The Government Racket, grab a copy from your library. I believe that last edition was from 2000 - still a valuable read.
Finally, conservative vs. liberal - you decide on this insightful animated video.
“Promotion of human rights around the world is a vital & integral part of US policy”
--US State Dept (Statement is void in the USA)
Our Top Secret 4th Branch of Government
Useful Stuff (It’s all useful to someone)
Mediation & Arbitration Training Certification
Lawyers are an expensive way to solve problems and many are turning to the use of mediators for workplace disputes, marital problems and more. Many local two-year colleges offer courses which can lead to ‘certification’ which allow you to work in the courts system and it can provide a lucrative sideline income. In many states little is required but most are headed toward occupational birth control in this area. You can always check with your local court system to learn more. There are how-to books, online training courses available as well. Many churches find this a useful service to offer and rarely require any kind of certification.
While there is no national body that conducts or sets the standards for legal mediation training, there are several well-known and respected organizations that provide such training. These can generally be found at universities across the country, as well as some that can be conducted entirely from home. Here is a current listing of such manuals posted to eBay:
Read more: Legal Mediator Training | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/facts_7294620_legal-mediator-training.html#ixzz18fUs5JAc
Free basic website - so easy to use, your mother could do it. When I first thought of the Poor Man concept I was unable to find anyone to help me create a website, so I taught myself and I keep learning…too bad I didn’t know about this beforehand!
80 percent of free government money is not called
“grants.” Of the $2 trillion in free government money that is given out
each year, only about $378 billion is referred to as grants. The rest are
direct payments, venture capital, or loans you do not have to pay back.
So, you won’t want to contact a government agency and simply ask for
information on grants, as you will miss 80 percent of the free money that
is given out.
Members of Congress can provide the best help. All elected officials
have people on their staffs who help people take advantage of government
programs. Senators and representatives are the most motivated people
in government to help you because, if they’re able to call a government
office and get you $50,000 for your business or $8,000 to train for a
new job, you’re likely to vote for them in the next election. (Find your
elected official at www.congress.org.)
$6,500 to “green” your home. Families with incomes up to $44,000
a year who applied have received an average of $6,500 to help lower their
heating and cooling bills via insulation, weatherstripping, replacement
or repair of furnaces, and more energy-saving projects. They’ve even
received assistance on issues revolving around carbon monoxide detection
and household appliance safety.
Having these energy-saving measures done to your home will save you close
to $500 a year on your heating and cooling bills. To submit an application,
contact the Westernization Assistance Programs Branch, EE44, U.S. Department
of Energy, at (877) 337-3463 or www1.eere.energy.gov/wip/wap_apply.html.
8,000 to improve your home and cut your utility bills. The Energy
Efficient Mortgages Program can be used to make energy-efficient improvements
in new and existing homes.
The cost of the improvements that may be eligible
for financing as part of the mortgage is either 5 percent of the property’s
value (not to exceed $8,000) or $4,000, whichever is greater. The maximum
mortgage limit for a single-family home is $160,950, plus the cost of the
eligible improvements. (Limits may be lower in some areas of the country.)
To take advantage, contact the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban
Development by writing to the department at 451 7th St. S.W., Washington,
D.C. 20410, visiting www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/sfh/eem/energy-r.cfm or
Land a job, thanks to the stimulus package. The people who have money
to spend are those who received stimulus funds. These are government agencies,
contractors, and even subcontractors who are hiring people, buying
equipment and supplies, looking for caterers for their parties, or are
flush to donate to your charity.
To find out who received this money in your area, contact the office of
your senator or representative or your governor’s office. Almost every
state has a website describing who is getting what. At the time of this
writing, it has been more than 22 months since the stimulus bill was
passed and only about 40 percent of the funds have been spent so far. To
research, go to www.recovery.gov.
Subscribe to Your Favorite Mags for Free
Take advantage of the free magazine subscriptions available on the
Internet. I currently get about 30 free magazines a month. One way is by
doing surveys for www.erewards.com. You do their surveys and after the
money adds up a little, you can trade it in for subscriptions or a number
of other things, but I think the subscriptions are the best buy.
Another option is to go to www.slickdeals.net. They have a free magazine
forum. Sometimes you have to fill out a short survey to get a subscription;
in other cases, you just fill out a form with your name and address
and you’re set.
If you haven’t heard of Fiverr (www.fiverr.com), you better take a look at it. Fiverr
is a website where members can post what they call “gigs”. Gigs are generally
services you offer for five dollars. It can range from video recording to sharing
advice, for five dollars.
How to Avoid Tow Truck Scams
If you run into problems on the road this winter, you should be wary of tow trucks you didn’t call that offer to help.
There’s a chance that those tow truck drivers will offer services at an extremely high price and or may keep your car hostage until you pay high towing and storage fees. A tow for a simple flat tire, for instance, could result in a $1,600 bill for towing and storage.
The insurer Allstate recently issued a warning about the rise of such scams. (I suggest using a AAA membership).
The Family Handyman site offers a lot of DIY projects online
"We now have so many regulations that
everyone is guilty of some violation."
-- Donald Alexander
Former IRS Director
This week’s dose of political reality
As for fiscal health, six of the 10 worst states for retirees on TopRetirements.com's list were among those just identified by a Pew Center for States report as being in "fiscal peril."
The report, "Beyond California: States in Fiscal Peril," showed that "some of the same pressures that have pushed California toward economic disaster are wreaking havoc in a number of other states, with potentially damaging consequences for the entire country."
Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island and Wisconsin joined California as the 10 most troubled states, according to Pew's analysis.
Of note, TopRetirements.com's Brady suggested that retirees and would-be retirees might want to avoid states in fiscal peril because these locales might be expected to face decreasing services and increasing taxation.
States of Disunion
Topping his website's list, Illinois's fiscal health could be the worst of any state, observed Brady. "It even borrowed money to fund its pension obligations," he said. As for California, he said the Golden State — though it does have a warm climate — is expensive and its finances are in disarray. What's more, he added, it has paid some bills with vouchers.
New York wasn't mentioned as being in fiscal trouble by the Pew Center, but it does have "very high taxes, including property taxes." In fact, Brady said New York has the second-highest tax burden and fifth-highest per capita property taxes. Plus, he said, the Empire State has a "dysfunctional state legislature." As if that wasn't bad enough, it's terrifically expensive to live in New York. The only benefit to living in New York, he said, is that pensions are exempt from income tax
State “Repeal Amendment” Would Check Central Government
“The same people driving the lawsuits that seek to dismantle the Obama administration’s health care overhaul have set their sights on an even bigger target: a constitutional amendment that would allow a vote of the states to overturn any act of Congress. Under the proposed ‘repeal amendment,’ any federal law or regulation could be repealed if the legislatures of two-thirds of the states voted to do so.” (New York Times)
“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”
Rise of the Police State
The is assembling a massive database on thousands of Americans, many of whom have not been accused of any crime, the Washington Post's Dana Priest and William Arkin report. The reporters' latest look at the country's ballooning national security system focuses on the role that local agencies -- often staffed by people with little to no counter-terrorism training -- have played in combating terrorism since 2001. Read to find the 5 most disturbing parts of this expose>
Americans Are Under Government’s Watchful Eye
“Nine years after the terrorist attacks of 2001, the United States is assembling a vast domestic intelligence apparatus to collect information about Americans, using the FBI, local police, state homeland security offices and military criminal investigators.” (Washington Post)
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
There are so many clear signs that our political establishment and financial system are based on fraud... from the ponzi scheme debt levels of western governments to their farcical elections to the mindless distractions that continually dribble out of the mainstream media. -Simon Black
Parting guest commentary…
The U.S. is descending into a police state. Perhaps it’s only a matter of time before the redux of the “Un-American Activities Committee.”
Perhaps the final nail in the coffin is that in addition to their far-reaching, unchecked power for surveilling their citizens, U.S. federal agents also have nearly unlimited powers to confiscate any asset in the country that they suspect may be involved in criminal wrongdoing.
Law enforcement officials often use that tired expression “ignorance of the law is not an excuse...” The truth is that U.S. Code comprises hundreds of thousands of pages of obscure, conflicting, Byzantine regulations. Each of us is guilty of something right now... and perhaps that’s the point.
There are 4.2 million security cameras in public places in the U.K. That’s one camera for every 14 citizens. The average person there gets captured on film about 300 times as he makes his rounds each day.
Security cameras surround George Orwell’s London residence where he lived from 1904 till his death in 1950. Ironically, this is where the man penned his novelized warning about the panoptic police state, 1984. There are two cameras viewing his back window and another nearby camera is aimed at the front door of his favorite pub.
It’s far, far too late to heed any warnings from 1984, however. But there is another book from which we could all take a little inspiration…
What would happen if a few very capable lovers of liberty were to take matters into their own hands?
What could they possibly to fight Leviathan?
They could see to it that our representatives never have a chance to become corrupt or entrenched enough to wreck our lives for their own political gain. They could convince Congress to observe term limits…even if it required extreme measures to get Congress to listen…
“Four angry individuals believe deadly force is justified to restore the Constitution and regain our liberty. If their plans succeed, ‘The thieves that have stolen our liberty will pay with their lives…or resign if the voters agree, professional politicians will be forever barred from serving in Congress.’
“The Department of Justice begins a vengeful and bloody hunt for the ‘terrorists,’ but the hunt itself threatens our remaining liberties. When the first senator is ‘term-limited,’ it is clear the terrorists will not be easily found — they are inside the federal government, and they have carefully prepared.
“The same questions asked before the American Revolution are asked again: Is deadly force justified to defend liberty? Under what conditions? When will it be too late?”
An Act of Self-Defense may be fiction, but it’s timely, to say the least. It’s also a very plausible way that things could work out in reality.
Sure, it’s entertaining, but it’s also a warning about what to expect…and about the plans your government is making for you right now.
Thank you Simon, I couldn’t have stated it any better!
Mayhem Meltdown - End time stuff, the coming revolution…plus-how long are we going to put up with TSA crap? Write your congress-critter & here’s a funny ‘Grandma Got Run Over by the TSA’ humor…think about, our rights have been violated, billions spent on so-called security, yet not one terrorist caught. Who is really being violated?
That’s all for this issue of Poor Man Madness…Merry Christmas to all!
Don't Get Caught With Your Pantry Down-New 11th Ed.