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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Disposable Americans, Storage Unit Wars-Making a Buck

Bruce’s Poor Man Recession Survival Bulletin
Your choice for urban survival resources

In this issue:

1. Amazon Advantage-another selling tool to consider
2. Storage unit wars-make some money
3. Basics of solar cooking
4. Online Privacy from the fed-don’t hold your breath
5. As the world squirms-prediction of hyperinflation in 2011
6. Dumbing down of US continues-the video
7. YouTube time machine
8. Disposable Americans

Peter Dickinson on Christmas…
The threat of Christmas hung in the air, visible already in the fretful look of passersby as they readied themselves for the meaningless but necessary rites of false jovialities and ill-considered gifts.

Storage Wars-another way to make some money

Following the popularity of Pawn Stars, two new programs have begun airing on cable stations, Storage Wars & Auction Hunters. All of them feature a lot of fat guys having a good time buying and selling goods they get on the cheap.

I wrote about this a bit at the beginning of the year but with the advent of these entertaining adventures of entrepreneurial Americans, I wanted to remind readers of this avenue of making some extra cash. Yes, it’s a gamble as one is not allowed to go inside and look through the boxes which have been stored. The door is opened for all to view and the bidding begins!

I’ve done several of these auctions over the years and it is interesting. One guy got a 21ft boat & trailer, 750cc motorcycle (the key was taped to the gas tank), tons of tools, etc. for $250. Another guy got a $2000 power tool and a cigar box full of US silver coins for $425. We’ve seen units sell for as little as $5 and as high as $1400 (that unit had two snowmobiles).

You never know what you will find. Sometime just junk (always wonder why folks pay to store garbage which should have been donated a long time ago). Other times valuable tools - it can be a crap shoot.

What I suggested in my 45 Ways to Make a Living Without a Job CD is to form a syndicate or buying club. Friends of ours in CA did this and profited nicely from this sideline. Each member put up $200 into the pool. Two people were designated as the buyers. Contents were hauled back to the home and sorted through by the group who frequently found coins and valuable jewelry, antiques, household goods, etc. If someone in the group wished to purchase something, they voted to come up with a fair price and those funds were placed back into the fund. Items were sold via eBay, local auctions, Craigslist and at frequently held garage sales. Lots of fun for the those who are inclined to gamble a little and who enjoy sifting through mountains of stuff!

Decades ago when I first began writing, I interviewed Ron Popeil, or as you might know him as Ronco products or his little kitchen oven he promotes on TV. Ron told me that for every 10 products he purchased and promoted, seven were outright failures, two broke even and one made a lot of money. Over the years I’ve interviewed other successful entrepreneurs including Dr. Jeffrey Lant, Dan Kennedy, Ben Suarez and others.

They all share something in common - chance favors the prepared and testing & refinement is always needed. The message is that it is often necessary to break out of your comfort zone and research new ideas or to put a new twist on an old idea. (I once interviewed Ms. Barrows of Mayflower Madame fame…turned out, we share the same birthday).

You can locate these auctions by looking at the classified sections of local newspapers and free shopper type publications. Here are couple of sites to use as well.

Santa is jolly because he knows where all the bad girls live!

Tips, tricks and tools

Some will rob you with a six-gun;
And some with a fountain pen.

Trapped in Bank of America Hell
Are you one of the lucky ones? Have a good job, live in a nice neighborhood, enjoy your cozy home? Think foreclosure only impacts the reckless or the unemployed?
Think again
Get the full story here:

What’s next for insolvent banks & our economy/Charlie Rose interview

Oodle Relaunches Classifieds Using Facebook Social Graph
Oodle launched a new version of its classifieds platform using
Facebook's social graph. The ''social marketplace'' powers both the
Facebook Marketplace and Oodle. It's also available on smartphones.


A follow up to the free PDF we provided in the last issue for selling on Amazon:

We have a service you might be interested in, we have a great program for independent publishers and artists that lets you include your titles in the catalog. It's called Advantage.

As an Advantage member, your titles will appear more often when customers search our catalog. We'll display a picture of each book, music CD, or video cover alongside reviews, excerpts and other information designed to spark sales. Amazon will keep copies of your titles in our inventory to offer immediate availability to buyers.

A complete program description, including information on how to sign up, is located at the following URL:

Find out what eBay buyers want

Wind Power is losing, Solar getting bigger
As federal grants for such projects dwindle, wind power efforts will slow to their lowest point in four years. Solar projects on public lands however, will start converting sunlight to electricity this year, mostly in California.

The YouTube time machine
Your afternoon productivity will probably suffer…this site aggregates thousands of news broadcasts, sports highlights and other videos representing every year since 1860...pick a date, specify what types of clips you want, and the site cues up just about anything. (how do they get stuff from 1860)?

“Manna from Heaven”.
The history of Aloe goes back to Alexander the Great and it is mentioned in the Bible many of times. What makes this product so special is the actual process of Aloe where all of the great healing abilities of Aloe are captured, not destroyed or altered.

The Basics of Solar Cooking
Sunshine is the most reliable resource we have, so why not use it? Uses for solar energy are abundant, but most don’t consider cooking with it. Solar cooking takes the power of the sun, reflects and focuses it in such a way as to produce a remarkable heat source. This is done using reflectively coated walls around the food. Think about how warm the summer sun makes a stone or the interior of a car. Similarly, a solar cooker intensifies the suns rays and makes them hot enough to cook an entire chicken or roast dinner.
Click below to find an easy to use overview of using solar to cook with. Ayn Rand and the World She Made - Q&A with Anne Heller

Anne C. Heller's critically acclaimed and best-selling 2009 book, Ayn Rand and the World She Made, is new in paperback (we're tempted to say that it makes a great Christmas gift, though it's clear that Rand didn't believe in the holiday or the altruism that attaches to it!).

Reason's Nick Gillespie talks with Heller about Rand, whom the biographer says remains the great explicator of capitalism's virtues and remarkably undervalued by the literary establishment.
Click here to watch.

Spybot Search and Destroy

This program is used for removing those pesky adware / spyware files on your computer. By now, most people understand the vast threat out there when it comes to malicious files that are sometimes tied to programs you download. If you are not aware of the potential threats I will give a bit of an overview.

Spyware is defined as a type of malware designed to collect information from your computer about you without your knowledge. It can do many things from changing your computer settings to causing really slow connection speeds on your computer. This program is designed to take care of these and many other problems for you.

If you'd like to learn more about Spybot, click here.

Mail your packages early so the post office can lose them in time for Christmas." ~ Johnny Carson

Round up of government nonsense

Do you remember the good old days the when it used to be illegal for governments to spy on their citizens? I don't either... but I'm told that it used to be illegal. Oh how times have changed.

PM Predicted little would change with the elections…more proof
A tax-cut compromise between President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans – a harbinger of a new era of divided government in Washington – has cleared the House, sending the $858 billion bill to the president's desk. The bill, which passed 277 to 148, provides a two-year extension for all tax cuts that were due to expire Dec. 31 -- including for families earning more than $250,000 a year -- and extends unemployment insurance benefits through next year.

Feds call for online 'privacy bill of rights'
The Commerce Department is calling for the creation of a "privacy bill of rights" for Internet users to set ground rules for companies that collect consumer data online and use that information for marketing and other purposes. Gee, why don’t they just get rid of that Constitution bashing un-Patriot Act?

Hyperinflation to start within a few months…as the world squirms
John Williams of Shadowstats has repeatedly warned that our economy is not doing as well as some would have you believe. From unemployment to GDP to current and future liabilities, there are fundamental problems that will not be resolved anytime soon - in fact, they're likely to get worse.
The end result according to Williams? A hyperinflationary depression.

Dumbing down of America & the west continues..
As PM says, the reason is to make the populace easier to control!

EDITORIAL: A death panel for government
Ronald Reagan observed that a federal program is the nearest thing to eternal life on this Earth. With President Obama's budget forecasting nearly doubled expenditures by the year 2020, governmental red ink appears equally immortal. Next year, Congress should pilfer an idea from the Texas state legislature that would give wasteful departments the dignified burial they have long deserved.

"I stopped believing in Santa Claus when I was six. Mother took me to see him in a department store and he asked for my autograph." ~ Shirley Temple

Parting thoughts---financial cannibalism

Last issue showed how banks and government watch every financial move Americans make…not in the name of national security, but in the name of grabbing money from you by charging you with some kind of crime…this is the new cornerstone of their recovery strategy; everyone is fair game for surveillance, and the threshold for asset seizure is minimal.

The more laws government passes, the more new classes of criminals it creates, the more assets the government can seize and the more control it can exert. That is what the Un-Patriot Act was truly about. It was never meant to protect American citizens, rather it allows the government to prey on its citizens, stripping them of their rights.

No on can keep up with the thousands of laws government passes each year…The system that they've created is one in which suspicion equals guilt, all without due process. Once they deem you suspicious, they can freeze your accounts and seize your assets, thus taking away whatever resources you might have to defend yourself and prove your own innocence.

What happens when the US dollar is dumped as world currency of choice?

The first thing is denial by our central bank (Tim Geitner) even though it was reported that a meeting, sans the US, took place recently by Arab nations, China, Japan & Russia to discuss dumping the dollar as the reserve currency. China is already buying less dollars (debt) as our government/Fed continue cranking up the printing press.

I still recall buying a home when interest rates were skyrocketing to 11, 12, 14% and higher and felt lucky to find one at 8.5% (I swapped my VA Certificate of Eligibility to another Vet-owned home mortgage along with $20,000 cash) and was happy! Land contracts were popular and state usury rates kept the interest somewhat reasonable…now, few states have such usury laws thanks to credit card companies.

In other countries which experienced massive inflation, such as England in the 80s and post war Germany, social structure bordered on collapse when folks often experienced 100% inflation rates every 24-hours.

Just think, in 2011 46 states face huge budget shortfalls and the fed will no longer bail them out. In Arizona, they’ve put up government buildings for sale, in CA which devotes 11% of its budget to prisons (more than education) it is releasing prisoners early. One southern state is buying life insurance policies on its employees in hopes of collecting the proceeds once he or she dies!

This is why state governments pass more and more laws too. By creating new classes of criminals, they collect more fines which supplement their budgets. (recall the story in the last issue of how Florida is sending in SWAT teams on so-called licensing violations for small businesses as to avoid Constitutional protections).

'Hotwatch orders,'--- government agents are able to write their own administrative subpoenas to surveil US citizens; they request the records of phone companies, Internet service providers, video rentals, and even frequent flier / customer loyalty programs at airlines and grocery stores.

Friends, I do believe our nation is teetering on the edge of massive disruption and the continued violations of Constitutional law by government terrorists is not a good sign!
Better perfect your black market and barter skills now.

Disposable Americans…an interesting site I ran across that I feel is worth sharing.
Disposable Americans, is what millions in this country have become. Thrown away, tossed out, laid off, and disposed of, during the Great Recession. Millions of Americans have seen their dreams turned into nightmares. Millions of Americans have lost their jobs, their savings, their homes, and even their lives. American families have been devastated. Who are these people? They are your neighbors, your friends, and your family members.

Keep these folks in mind as you celebrate the holiday and this is why the Poor Man created the site and newsletter. It’s been our goal to share resources and to expose how practices have hurt America.

Yours for survival, the Poor Man…“Anyone who believes that men are the equal of women has never seen a man trying to wrap a Christmas present." ~ Unknown
Have a blessed Christmas!

Enjoy the Poor Man’s holiday photo spread on face book…
Share this album with anyone by sending them this public link:

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