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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Open Letter to the President - No Hope, No Change

An Open Letter to the President and Congress…
No hope, no change and the destruction of America.

I am Independent and like all presidents, I gave you the benefit of the doubt when you were elected as President. You ran on the promise of hope and change. Well, like a lot of Americans, we’re losing hope and see almost no change. It’s politics as usual in Washington.

My college aged children ask, What’s happened to this country. Where are the jobs?”
They already know their degree is virtually worthless in the ‘new economy.’

When I was born, America was the most prosperous country on the planet, Now, we’re virtually bankrupt. So what happened?

The U.S. economy will very soon no longer be the biggest economy in the world. Ten years ago, the U.S. economy was three times as large as the Chinese economy, but now China will pass the United States and will become the largest economy in the world in 2016 according to the IMF.

Energy and gasoline prices are killing the budgets of most Americans. During the Arab Oil Embargo of the 1970s Congress and the President promised we’d be energy independent. We’re still importing 70% of our oil and yet you deny drilling rights in our own country.

Millions of illegal immigrants get free medical care, free schooling, free food and housing subsidies. Yet millions of taxpaying citizens can no longer afford medical care or housing and many can barely afford to feed their family or fill their cars.

We have a cumbersome and unfair tax system in which the burden has shifted away from corporations onto the backs of the middle class. All the while, US tax policies still encourage the off-shoring of US jobs while GE pays no income tax and gets a tax credit to boot. Why is that?

At every level of government we have a bureaucracy which strangles citizens and businesses with ridiculous amounts of red tape and costs, severely limiting job creation. Why is that?

Since January 2001, neither America's real GDP, nor its stock market, has registered any real gains. Oh...and neither has its workforce; there are no more people working today than there were 10 years ago; and they take home no more disposable income.

The Patriot Act, Asset Forfeiture, and other ‘laws’ have decimated the Bill of Rights while supposedly protecting us from terrorists. Most of us fear our government more!

Lifelong politicians have been busy feathering their nest while crapping in our nest.

Why is it the American people no longer seem to matter to you career politicians?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

What Would MacGyver Do?

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin
A Digest of urban survival resources

In This Issue:
1. What would MacGyver Do?
2. Get free samples for children, women and more
3. Sheriff Mack-Law Enforcement against the feds
4. 10 alternative uses for charcoal
5. Increase your brainpower
6. 15 Surprising uses for aspirin
7. Get Prepared Expo-May 14th in MO

It has been discovered that the best way
to insure implicit obedience is to
commence tyranny in the nursery."
-- Benjamin Disraeli

What would MacGyver Do?
Also, a bankers take on the economy-now that Moody & Poor’s downgraded the US rating.

Our Easter family feast was fulfilling (pun intended) with my cousin Jeff bringing along a batch of home made sausage (he promises to share the recipe with our readers) that was outstanding!

My cousin Cheryl works for a large bank and shared her take on the economy. For the most part, few at the bank talk about the economy, possibly out of denial or fear. There’s no doubt it doesn’t look good though. She too feels if it collapses, it will be a gradual thing and it may come to our government defaulting on its obligations and eventually issuing a new currency, making current financial accounts nearly worthless.

She also noted something I’ve discussed with other preppers…buying rolls of half dollars to search through them for silver coins. One fellow, she says, buys $1000 worth each month and apparently, he finds enough silver coins to justify the work. She also finds that some people exchanging coins, probably from piggy banks, often contain pre-1964 silver coins. Of course, I told her we’d buy those from her!

Spot silver surged more than 5 percent to above $49 ounce on Monday, buoyed by a weak dollar and strong physical demand in Asia that also propelled gold to a record high for a seventh consecutive session.
Spot gold hit a record high of $1,518.10 an ounce, before easing to $1,517.80, up nearly 1 percent. No surprise since the IMF just announced the US will lose first place among world economies in 2016, to China, of course.

On another note…What would MacGyver do?

Most of us probably recall the MacGyver TV show which aired about 15 years ago. He was the elite of emergency engineers and could always get himself out of a jam with a paper clip, duct tape and his pocket knife.

Most of us have had a MacGyver moment. To MacGyver something is to fix a problem a problem in a resourceful, crafty, improvisational manner – to save the day by rigging or fixing something. In an age where fewer people know how to do anything other than their own specialty, we all appreciate the jack of all trades.

We could use a few more men and women like MacGyver in this country. Over the years we have a fostered a climate of incompetence. For us guys, for example, it’s a real challenge to change our oil or tune up an engine; it’s now a specialized task.

If you’ve had a MacGyver moment, share it with us. This will qualify for our “Suggestion Box” contribution and could win you a prize.

There used to be a site devoted to MacGyver moments but I couldn’t find it. However, there is an interesting site which was the inspiration for the book “What Would MacGyver Do?” by Brendan Vaughan (available on eBay and Amazon). The site can be found at:


I have 200 gallons of water in my garage and a good water filter plus stockpiles of wheat and rice. In case we need to leave town in a hurry, we have hidden lakehouse and if it’s really bad, we head west to my brothers farm. We’ve also stockpiled vitamins and MREs. –Beth in TX

The Weekly Roundup

USAPrepares Expo on May 14th & 15th in Springfield, MO
Get a free ticket with signup - use this link for more information.

Guerilla Gardening Day - May 1st. Interesting site. The global hub for those who cultivate land as guerrilla gardeners. Let's fight the filth with forks and flowers.

10 handy alternative uses of charcoal
In his ongoing but sporadic series Don't Throw That Away!, the Green Cheapskate shows you how to repurpose just about anything, saving money and the environment in the process. Send him your repurposing ideas and challenges, but whatever you do, don't throw that away…more at:

15 Surprising Uses for Aspirin
Aspirin is known worldwide as a means for relieving headache, fever and inflammations. Since it is often a generic drug, many people take it for granted. Some fear taking aspirin because of the common notion that generic medicine has terrible side-effects and aspirin reportedly causes Reye’s Syndrome…read more at:

Free Samples for Women - Requires sign up

Sign up to get Free Samples (food, children’s items, beauty, etc.) of name brand products, new products and more.

Answer a few questions about Orthodontics for children and get a free copy of
Mia Hamm's book, Winners Never Quit.

Wonderful collection (huge selection) of how-to books & more taken from a simpler time…Poor Man subscribers get 20% until the end of the year. Take a peek - well worth your time.

Long time subscriber Steve has added new & useful information to his site(s)…always worth a look-see what this inventive and productive guy offers!
I also added them to these sites:
Feel free to give me the "thumbs up," and if you have a blog or website and want to help me out with a link, that will be appreciated too.

Remove wallpaper borders easily (thanks to the Poor Wife for this tip). Gently heat the area with a blowdryer, then pull the border off. If that doesn’t work, spray with warm water & let dry 10 minutes, then use a plastic scraper to remove.

Turn Game Playing Into A Business!
Fantaz - where Skill Pays!

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This will be the most important website you will ever visit.


Use an old pair of nylons into a garden helper. Snip off the end and put a bar of soap inside, tie it to a hook on your fence or tree near your garden hose. Wash dirty hands by lathering up from the hanging soap and rinse clean.

The Nanny State Update – Skewering citizens everywhere – because we can!

In a snub that's raised some eyebrows in Britain, neither of the country's two most recent former prime ministers received an invite to the Royal wedding. Also left out are President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama. Don’t feel bad, the Poor Man didn’t get one either!

Inflation figures and woes…

The price of silver has increased by more than 150% over the past 12 months. But the price of gold has only gone up about 30%.
If you invested $100 in the S&P 500 ten years ago it would be worth about $107.48 today.
If you invested $100 in gold ten years ago it would be worth about $569 today.
If you invested $100 in silver ten years ago it would be worth about $1037 today.

The National Inflation Association recently pointed out that the Federal Reserve is buying a whopping 70% of U.S. government debt. This is the most inflationary thing a country can do. But the U.S. feels forced to fill the void left by waning foreign purchases of U.S. debt, which have fallen from 50% of all debt issuance to 30%.

>Delaware, police and state government officials recently tore a basketball hoop right out of a family's front yard and carted it away because it was "too close" to the street.

>One Mississippi state judge recently issued an order for state officials to gather and deliver to him the names of every single child that is being homeschooled in the state. The frightening thing is that the judge did this all on his own. Nobody requested this information and there is no case pending for which this information would be required.

>Would you like to have your face scanned and your ID recorded every time you attend a public event? Don't laugh. The San Francisco Entertainment Commission is actually proposing a new rule which "would require all venues with an occupancy of over 100 people to record the faces of all patrons and employees and scan their ID’s for storage in a database which they must hand over to law enforcement on request."

>California agencies lent millions to employees who never repaid-
Caltrans, Cal Fire and the CHP are among those investigated by state Controller John Chiang. Gov. Jerry Brown halts the practice of agencies offering salary and travel advances and says he'll find out how much California is owed. Estimate: $13 Million!

Need more room in your bathroom? Hang a compartmentalized shower bag on the back of the door and use it place extra shampoo, brushes, makeup and the like.

The Parting Shot…

Sheriff Mack – County Sheriff’s America’s Last Best Hope Richard
The biggest threat to our freedoms, are elected officials!

I had the opportunity to listen to a partial interview with former AZ sheriff, Richard Mack. It’s always nice to know that members of law enforcement are highly concerned with how the federal government has overstepped its Constitutional authority and are leading us down a path of destruction. Personally, I could never be a member of law enforcement as there are too many laws which I don’t agree with and could not, in good conscience, enforce.

Sheriff Mack was one of several other law enforcement members who stood against the Brady Bill and its illegal mandates regarding several aspects of gun control. Indeed, they filed a lawsuit in federal court, defeating many its measures.

Like Arizonians and Texans, there are still a few states left where self reliance is the understood way of life and most of its residents are understandably upset over federal encroachments on our Bill of Rights and other freedoms.

On his site you'll find many articles and extracts from books he’s written on many subjects related to maintaining our freedom as a people. He’s deeply committed to the belief that government should exist to protect the freedoms of the individuals whom it serves. We must return to those principles that our country was founded upon!

You’ll find a variety of resources and links on his site and if you work with a like-minded organization, he’s available as a speaker. Learn more at:

Yours for self reliance in crazy times, the Pooman!
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A Shallow Planet Production

Saturday, April 23, 2011

10 Free Trees, Avoid Smishing, Backyard Cottages

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

In This Issue:

1. The coming debt tsunami-Economic Overdose
2. The myth of the American Dream-the new reality
3. Backyard cottages-new wave of rental properties
4. Avoid ‘smishing’ of your cell phone
5. Urban farming comes to the schoolyard
6. Support the ADF and get 10 free trees

Socialism is workable only in Heaven where it isn’t needed, and in Hell where they’ve got it.
-- Cecil Palmer

Ahhh, spring, will it ever arrive?

It’s the third week of April and we got more cold and snow today, showers expected tomorrow. Wonderful! I was just about ready to put my gloves and scarf away and begin soil testing and plumbing work on the old homestead. Foiled again.

We did manage to order a very cute 12x12 barn-style shed that includes four windows, shutters and cupola (see the picture on the Cheap Housing tab at our site). The cost was $900 less than a pre-built one at our favorite lumber yard…in fact, their prices skyrocketed since I initially looked at them last fall and they couldn’t come close to what we paid.

This will rest next to the cabin and act as storage and a laundry room. The electrical supplies we’ll need ran another $67.

We also ordered a set of six dwarf fruit trees for $50 delivered from Burgess Nurseries. I couldn’t find anything local that matched this price. In addition to the fruit trees we already have on the property, this will give us a postage stamp orchard and will include apples, peaches, pear, cherry and a nectarine tree.

If you’re a new subscriber or reader, the Poor Man has been working on an off-grid cabin and acreage we obtained this past fall. Much of the work we’re doing ourselves along with a couple of handyman friends. Demonic bureaucratic blundering has put us behind schedule and over budget…can you believe that?

If you're thinking about potential income properties, you may want to take another look at your backyard. Backyard cottages - sometimes referred to as accessory dwelling units, laneway housing, or granny flats - have been cropping up all over the Pacific Northwest, and cities across the nation have started updating zoning rules to allow for dwellings where your swing set used to stand. Seattle, considered a pioneer of the movement, now welcomes Portland, Miami, Berkeley, Denver and Burlington, VT, to the backyard cottage club.

New home prices are 29% higher than used and buyers today are favoring smaller, more manageable homes and are shopping closer to cities which tend to offer lower priced homes. Ironically, 46% of rural counties in America lost population over the past decade.

Karen Chapple, a city planning professor at the University of California, Berkeley, says she was intrigued by the burgeoning trend and built her own backyard cottage this year - as a class project, no less - to see the feasibility of backyard cottages as affordable housing options in the Bay Area. Her 420 square feet cottage - small by comparison to those in Portland and Seattle where the maximum size tops out at 800 square feet.
Read the full story here:,8599,2065209,00.html?xid=rss-fullnation-yahoo

The magnitude of the housing crash caused permanent changes in the way some people view home ownership,” said Michael Lea, a finance professor at San Diego State University. “Even as the economy improves, there are some who will never buy a home because their confidence in real estate is gone.


Urban farming expands onto school grounds
Community-supported agriculture is not an unfamiliar concept for regular readers, nor are the often-associated add-ons of bicycle-based produce delivery and compost services. Canadian Fresh Roots Urban Farm offers all of these; what sets it apart, however, is a series of partnerships it's formed with local schools in the Vancouver area to create urban farms on school land.

Fresh Roots produces and distributes organically grown food through a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program as well as pocket markets and restaurant sales in the Vancouver area. Much of the produce for that program is grown by local urban farmers and in participating neighborhood gardens, but of particular interest are the organization's new partnerships with local schools to use school land. At Queen Alexandra Elementary, for example, the relationship began last year when the Vancouver School Board bought a share from Fresh Roots' CSA for its cafeteria salad bar program. More at:

Celebrate Arbor Day on April 29th by going green & get free trees
If you become a member of the Arbor Day Foundation ($10), they’ll send you 10 free flowering trees, and plant 10 more in your honor. Use the ADF to send someone a card ($5.95 donation) -they offer an email card too- and they’ll plant a tree in honor of the recipient.

Welcome to Spatulatta, an amazing cooking resource for kids online. They offer 350 step-by-step video recipes that will make it very easy for your kids to learn how to cook!

More good uses for coffee grounds

>>Get rid of ants - Sprinkle loose grounds on the outside perimeter of you home. The scent will repel ants and ingesting will kill them.
>>Sprinkle dried grounds on garage floors and other outdoor areas to sweep clean-cheaper than sweeping compound.
>>Add grounds to your compost pile and/or use as a ‘treat’ for indoor plants by sprinkling your pot soil around the base of the plant.
>>Sop up oil spills from garage floors and driveways-great for cleanups after working on a lawnmower or rototiller. Cover the spot with dry grounds, let sit 15 minutes or so, then sweep.
>>Work a thin layer into your outdoor acid-loving plants using 1-2 cups for every 8 bushes. Repeat weekly. Will also deter slugs and snails.

PC World reports spammers & scammers create about 10% of all online dating accounts.
Avoid providing financial & certain private data early on - goes for face book too!

Smishing is almost exclusively a threat for smart phone users. Here are some tips to help protect yourself:

#1: Get a reliable anti-virus program. Look for ones that have great reviews and solid recommendations. Smart phones are like hand-held computers, and if you have a Windows Phone 7 or an Android phone, you have a handheld computer with a real operating system. And what is the first thing you do after you have installed Windows, Linux, or Apple on your computer? Why, put on an anti-virus program, of course.
#2: Don’t click on it! And don’t call the number! I can’t state this enough. If there’s a link included and you don’t know who it is – and now, apparently, even if you think you know who it is – don’t click on it! Don’t call the number they instruct you to call – don’t do anything but delete it.
#3: Try not to have any really personal information stored on your phone. Notice I say to try not to do that. What I want to say is don’t do it no matter what but I realize that it might be impossible to not have some information on your phone. Just try to keep the real personal stuff to a minimum.
#4: Make sure that you have strong passwords for your financial accounts. If you do have to (or like to) do your banking, etc. on your phone, make sure you use a strong password. If you don’t know how strong a password should be, just Google “how to make a strong password” or something like that and you’ll get results that will help.

Clove oil is a well known remedy for teething babies. Use powdered clove to heal cuts and help kill dangerous bacteria. Acts as an antiseptic and effective painkiller.

I Started Making $4,000+ Per Day Simply
Returning Phone Calls. Learn how you can too!


Trickery, dickory dock, which political party put us into hock?
Hickory dickory dock, which one should be shot?


The Myth of the American Dream-the New Reality

Banks now own more of "our homes" than we do. During the most recent recession, the total amount of U.S. home equity owned by the banks surpassed the total amount of U.S. home equity owned by the rest of us for the first time ever.

The Crumbling of America
America's Crumbling Infrastructure : Across America, the list keeps growing of examples of America's infrastructure crumbling. From Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans to the recent pipeline explosion in San Bruno, CA, it's becoming clear that the problem of aging infrastructure is not going away anytime soon. Meanwhile America is spending trillions of dollars in meaningless wars abroad instead of spending that money home trying to fix the country...

The entire system is designed to take what you have away from you. There are many ways that this is accomplished - taxation, inflation, debt, interest, fines, fees, tickets, government seizures and good old-fashioned corporate greed.

The Coming Debt Tsunami
The entire wealth of USA is less than $60 Trillion. Please remember the Constitution. Governments are not allowed to take assets without just compensation
Municipal Debt: The Coming Crisis? According to the simple interest calculation, no amount of taxation or asset confiscation can solve this problem…view more at:

The average American now spends approximately 23 percent of his or her income on food and gas.

States Consider Resurrecting the Gold Standard
Utah will allow gold and silver coins minted by the federal government to be used as legal tender starting in May. Other states may follow suit as declining faith in U.S monetary policy, coupled with rising inflation rates, are fueling talk to bring back the gold standard.

Related Story-video
Overdose : The Next Financial Crisis
Overdose: The Next Financial Crisis a Nice and simple documentary for even the clueless to follow. GET A FARM TO GROW YOUR OWN FOOD. GET GOLD AND SILVER. Watch:

Sage advice for preparing…watch this informative video interview.

Gerald Celente, the director of the Trends Research Institute, speaks about unemployment, recession, bank robbery and Wall Street hijacking Washington , unless banks take a hit for their mistakes, the uproar will only increase across the Atlantic, a financial bailout in Europe has been launched flooding banks with government money. But it comes amid a lowering of wages, a reduction in social spending and an increase in taxes. This has sparked protests which are spreading across the continent , "When people lose everything, and they have nothing left to lose, they lose it! As people keep losing it, the government will crack down even tighter." Gerald Celente says , the American Empire is collapsing and the banks have committed the greatest bank robbery in the history of the world.

That’s it for this issue…I had promised a short one this week due to the holiday!
Peace be with you.
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A Shallow Planet Production

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

College vs. Apprenticeships:Analysis, Cops Spy On Cell Phone Data

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

In This Issue:

1. College vs. Apprenticeship, a cost analysis
2. Cell phone technology allows police to snoop data
3. Small Business start up grants-do they exist?
4. Free-5qts bio-based oil, free cat litter, more
5. Greensburg, KS-Portrait of success for a ‘can do’ attitude

"Give me four years to teach the children and
the seed I have sown will never be uprooted."

-- Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

Getting a grant for your small biz startup

Got an early morning call from a woman in MO this week. She had been looking at the Poor Man site’s free money section in order to learn about startup grants for her high end landscaping business.

I had to remind her that most grants, government or foundation, are usually given to non-profit groups, not individuals. The one exception are government grants underwritten for the endowment of arts.

As we point out on the site, most grant seekers team up with a local charity or other non-profit group to obtain grant money and arrange for some kind of split. The majority of government grants are very specific and require a lot of paperwork and follow-up. High on government priorities are funding for medical/technical research, job creation/training programs, studies related in a variety of areas to Native American studies, etc.

The SBA does not offer any grants that I am aware of, only low cost loans and there are many hoops to jump through.

Her best bet was to secure financing as most startups do, through family and friends, home equity (if she had any), vendor financing, and credit card financing (not a recommended). Another method some use to get needed capital is through factoring of receivables, but that applies to already established businesses with a customer base. Factoring, in essence, is selling your outstanding invoices at a discount.

One enterprising gal we know of once sold raffle tickets to raise money. She had won an all expense paid trip to another country (which was transferable) and raised somewhere near $15,000 for her business. Warning: depending on how this is structured, it can be illegal or require registration if being offered to the public. In her case, she only offered tickets to family, friends, associates and relatives.

There some private foundations which make micro-loans and grants and those can be found in the Foundation Directory. Some states now offer related programs to women and minorities (see your state’s Economic Development department). Also recommended is Matthew Lesko, the Money Guy. You’ll find a link to his site at the end of this week’s bulletin. The Foundation can be accessed online, but there is a subscription fee (free at your library).

I enjoyed your article(s) on bureaucratic laws run amok…NY officials just backed down from banning wiffle ball from summer park programs (they already ban dodge ball) while in parts of OH, officials want to rename East Egg Hunt to ‘spring egg hunt.’ Seems to be the real domestic terrorists in this Nanny State are the crooked politicians and bureaucrats who have sunk our country with stupid laws and tax policies which continue to encourage Wall St. to ship US jobs overseas…they should be tarred and feathered or worse - they are the black plague on our great country! Our family fears these diseased political pirates more than terrorists.
--Donna Lee of OH

Apprenticeships vs. College
Most college degrees today cost more and are worth less in the real world

Jobs are scarce, real incomes have fallen, and soaring college costs have produced a scenario for kids with no chance for jobs…

An article in a newspaper analyzed the payback of a college degree - Does It Pay to Go to College? Scott Burns did a cost-benefit analysis. Take a close look at the economic value of a degree in today's world. This is particularly important for the home schooled as they consider their high school plans.

Many are convinced their kids must attend college and spend a lot of time preparing transcripts and effectively letting the college admissions officer establish their high school curriculum. Certainly, a rarely challenged cultural assumption in modern America is that "you must go to college" or be forever lost as a second class citizen trapped in life long poverty. Let's put a pencil to this assumption. References and links are appended in this article.

Living Below Your Means…Suze Orman weighs in.
PBS McNeil-Lehr broadcast of The Declining American Dream among the middle class…no more upward mobility-a good education is no longer a guarantee of a middle class lifestyle (even with a masters degree)

NOTE: Many community colleges today offer apprentice programs, especially for useful trades such as being an electrician or plumber. Read more here:

YOUR FREE FOOD 2 GO: Site to be ready April 9th
Sign up now to become a distributor & get your sample pack

A Portrait of a ‘Can Do” American success story
A couple of years ago, Greensburg, KS, a small farming community, was devastated by hurricanes which leveled nearly the entire town. Many thought about leaving for good, most of their youth automatically left town upon graduation.
A group of residents got together and decided to rebuild their town, turning into what is now known as an off-the-grid ‘greenest community’ in the nation. Profiled in Reader’s Digest, they become a show case for communities to share their knowledge of going green. Learn more about what the American spirit can really do at:

Reader Comment: Jeanne-Ark
For emergencies, we have an RV which is well stocked with provisions, solar power, guns, extra fuel & extra generator. We’ve mapped out various escape routes in the event of an emergency.

Useful Resources Roundup

World’s Best Cat Litter-Free after rebate

Free-5 qts of bio-based oil for your car-good thru April 30th

In case you get an IRS audit-here’s how to win your case

Dropbox - Online backup, file sync, and ...
Dropbox is the easiest way to store, sync, and, share files online. There's no complicated interface to learn. Dropbox works seamlessly with your operating system…share with friends who use their system and get another 250mb free!

Remove coffee and tea stains from coffee cups, china, etc
Fill a stained cup with warm water, drop in a denture-cleaning tablet and let it stay overnight. The next morning, wash, rinse and dry as usual-or try a non-gel toothpaste.

Keep Your Houseplants Healthy While You’re Away
If you’re traveling for vacation or a business trip, you don’t want to worry—or even think about—your plants withering away at home. Here is a way to keep them alive and well while you’re out of town (works for up to about two weeks)...
Place plastic trash bags on the floor of your bathtub. Put big towels on top of the bags and pour water on the towels until they’re completely wet. Check each plant to make sure it has a drainage hole at the bottom of its pot, and bring it into the bathroom—then set it on top of the towel.
Right before you leave the house, give the plants a thorough watering.

DIY Battery charger plans and video


Law Enforcement Agencies now snooping your private cell phone data without your knowledge or consent…Big Brother continues to violate the 4th Amendment.

Automated Extraction Tools (free)
Law enforcement’s use of sophisticated cellular tracking techniques to observe suspects before arrest and to build cases against them in criminal cases is building all across the country, and is raising major concern over civil liberties and privacy rights. Existing law is outdated and does not give set guidelines on the use of cellular tracking techniques.

State Police in Michigan are stealing cell phone data from cell phones without the knowledge of the owner, usually during a traffic stop (an officer will ask to look at your phone). So far, FOIA attempts by the ACLU to obtain information on how and why this information is being gathered have proven fruitless as police are making the request unreasonably expensive and what information that is released, has been sketchy and piecemeal.

The ACLU filed a suit against the TSA for using similar technology on privately owned laptop computers at airports. That suit is pending.

There are sites on the web that offer free tools for an investigator to use to perform cell forensics. Many times, these tools are limited and focused a small set of phones – but can be useful nonetheless. One tool is Bitpim. BitPim is a program that allows you to view and manipulate data on many CDMA phones from LG, Samsung, Sanyo and other manufacturers.

Another free tool focused on Blackberry devices can be found The user can download the Blackberry Device Manager and back-up any Blackberry device. The back-up file is in a proprietary format (IPD) and extracts some very useful forensic data including call records, SMS, emails (including all content) and calendar events. An IPD file can be converted to a useable format by using another tool – ABC Amber Blackberry Converter. It is not free, but only costs $19.95 for the tool.

If a fungal infection has left you with thick, unsightly toenails, skip expensive drugstore treatments. Mix 50% classic Listerine and 50% white vinegar. You can dab onto toes or soak twice a week. Can take a year to work depending on how bad the infection is.


The Parting Shot…

S&P Cuts US Ratings Outlook to Negative
Standard & Poor’s put a “negative” outlook on the U.S. AAA credit rating, citing rising budget deficits and debt.

An unrecognizable America - Bill of Rights Defense Committee

The Poor Man has written extensively about corruption in politics and the ever growing need for bureaucrats to control every aspect of our lives - it’s an addiction which is destroying our country.

Previously I’ve recounted such recent incidents as Girl Scouts being banned from selling cookies from their front yard, a six-year old banned from selling lemonade in a public park, TSA groping pat downs of a six year old girl at the airport, a Chicago ban on bringing lunches to school and much more…

In Cleveland, authorities haves announced plans to have "trash supervisors" go snooping through trash cans to ensure that people are actually recycling according to city guidelines

Author Naomi Wolf (the DVD on the End of America we give away was produced by her) sent me the following email which might be of interest to readers

Dear Bruce,
Since 2007, the American Freedom Campaign (AFC) has been fighting to protect our constitutional liberties, rein in the expansion and abuse of executive power, and restore our system of checks and balances. Your involvement and support was critical to our success in injecting these concerns into the 2008 presidential campaign.

At the time, the results of that campaign suggested a consensus in our favor. We all celebrated the chance to see our government once again uphold the rule of law. Yet since the enthusiasm of that moment, the White House under President Obama has continued many of the same excesses committed by the Bush administration. Your continued concern about limits on executive power is just as important today as it was then.

While AFC is no longer able to do this important work on our own, we have folded into the Bill of Rights Defense Committee (BORDC) to continue our crucial advocacy moving forward. BORDC was formed in 2001, shortly after the passage of the PATRIOT Act.

BORDC is best known for spearheading a nationwide effort opposing government surveillance in which more than 400 cities and towns across the country, as well as eight states, passed local resolutions opposing the USA PATRIOT Act. Today, BORDC is once again mobilizing Americans from all walks of life—and in all parts of the country—to protect civil liberties at the local level. Learn more at:
Be sure to view their stand on local efforts at restoring your rights here:

Your fellow contrarian, the Poor Man!

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Sunday, April 17, 2011

DIY-Formulas, Garden Tips,Solar Batch Heater, More

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

In This Issue:

1. How to get things done around the homestead
2. A simpler, fairer tax system-47 Ways-Immature stuff…
3. DIY Garden Tips & Formulas, Prepper survival garden
4. DIY Solar batch heater
5. A nationwide garage sale in Australia
6. Cut your electric bill by comparison shopping

Often, the less there is to justify a traditional custom, the harder it is to get rid of it."
-- Mark Twain

Odds are you did not win…but you might in the next round!
Do you have an interesting story to share?

Jim of AZ was our grand prize winner and Jason of MI took second place in our Suggestion Box promotion. Also, Dave R of Cleveland, OH gets a DVD for his wonderful sharing of our newsletter and website. These fellows won because of the content and other suggestions they have consistently made during the past few months.

Apparently, there was little interest among you for the un-circulated Silver Eagle ounce of silver, now going for more than $40 on eBay and elsewhere.

It’s a bit of challenge knowing what content to include in each issue. We’ve tried including recipes, household pet coupons and DIY vet care tips, bootstrap business ideas, a wide range of freebies and more…but without feedback, we haven’t a clue of other subjects we should cover.

Not to fret. Round two begins with this issue. The other prizes we have, including DVDs and a mini-bugout kit will continue to be given out while supplies last. NEW prizes include a new Ronco Pocket Fisherman, a pair of Emerson 7X50 binoculars with UV Optics, accessory kit and carrying pouch and a 35 PC First Aid pouch with carrying case.

Do you have an interesting story to share? Perhaps an unusual experience in becoming more self-reliant, a sideline or fulltime business that would interest other readers, an experience with livestock or farming, a particular government gripe or run-in with the law in which you triumphed…we’d like to profile such experiences. Send them to the same email address below. If we use your piece, you’ll be in the running for the next award.

For details (pay attention new subscribers) go to:

The Poor Man will hold its Suggestion Box program each month, lasting 30 days…so share your ideas, content, resources and more with us by sending them to: -- In the subject line, place the word ‘Suggestion.’


Have a sinkful of dirty dishes and no dish detergent, use shampoo (make sure it’s the non-conditioning kind) to clean them. If you have oily hair and use shampoo specifically formulated for it, all the better. It will cut right through the oily pots and pans and greasy dishes.

Many freshly picked foods begin to lose vitamins immediately upon harvesting. Nearly half the vitamins may be lost within a few days unless some measure is taken to cool or preserve the vegetables. Within one to two weeks, even refrigerated foods have lost half their vitamin content.
Some fresh foods have less vitamins and nutrients available than do canned foods in fact. For example, canned tomatoes are higher in lycopene (an antioxidant) than their fresh counterparts. Because protein is not lost during the canning process, meats and vegetables high in protein remain so after canning.

Here are some low-cost DIY things you can do for your garden:

>Cure tomato blossom rot. Calcium is the cure. Crush two Tums tablets per plant and add to the plant whenever you water it.

>For perkier annuals, bulbs & perennials. Mix 1 cup of sugar, 3 cups bone meal and 1 cup of Epsom salts in a bucket. Sprinkle a pinch into the bottom of each hole as you plant them.

>Use leftover liquid-free fertilizer. Save your bathwater, water you boil vegetables and potatoes in, leftover beer, juice, coffee, wine or milk, water from when you change your fish tank…feed those liquids to your plants and vegetables.

>Use these common ingredients to jump start your compost pile. Mix flat beer and cola and sprinkle it over your compost periodically. It will accelerate the process.
Prepper Survival Gardening video you’ll find interesting-Living History School

Learn new and valuable computer skills free of charge - visit your library to see what is offered

YOUR FREE FOOD 2 GO: Site to be ready April 9th
Sign up now to become a distributor & get your sample pack

Get Paid Daily.
Join our Huge Team build concept.
Click here for all the details.

How to get things done (around the homestead, not Washington)
Quite frankly, most people need help figuring out how to get things done. That’s where Hipp’s Help comes in. On this website, you’ll find the information you’ll need to do what you need to do. Hipp’s Help includes tutorials on home improvement, basic and intermediate gardening, cooking and other topics to help you live life

Cut your electric bill
Research your area to find competing utilities. Prices can vary by 20%. Check:

DIY Project - The solar batch heater is made with a steel drum.
Since a standard 55-gallon drum cannot withstand city
water pressure, but some pressure is needed to push
water through the system, gravity flow is often used.
This involves a second 55-gallon drum, filled with cold
water and elevated above the batch heater drum. Gravity
provides enough pressure to move water from the
elevated drum (cold-water source) to the batch heater
drum and finally to the hot water faucet in a sink,
shower or other outlet….

Materials Needed
55-gallon drum (Be sure the drum has not contained any toxic materials.)
Flat-black paint (made to adhere to metal surfaces)
75 (approx.) concrete blocks for frame
Foil-faced insulation, 2 - 4 ft. x 8 ft. sheets (Do notuse polystyrene sheets -- they will melt. Use Thermax, Rmax or another isocyanurate insulation.)
Reinforced garden hose or automotive heater hose, 3 sections (1/2-in. inside diameter)
Hose clamps, 3
3/4-inch fitting, copper or CPVC (3/4-in. thread x 1/2-in. sweat x 1/2-in. sweatPipe, copper or CPVC
Pipe, copper or CPVC (1 ft., 1/2-in. outside diameter)

Get a free resume writer, save up to $500. Go to:

Useful & Interesting News

Make a little extra scratch by signing up to provide your tips. Multi-category, no fee to sign up and create an account. Example:
Start a new gratitude box tradition
Take a shoe box and let your kids decorate it. Use lots of glitter, stickers, etc. Cut a hole in the top. Then, whenever you (or the kids) see someone doing something that you are grateful for write it down and put it in the box. At Thanksgiving read all of the notes. It makes for a really neat way to celebrate Thanksgiving!

In exchange for mortgage payments, consumers' homes painted with ads
If consumers are willing to accept advertising
on their cars, in their personal lives and on their social web pages, then why not their homes as well? That, indeed, is essentially the premise behind a new initiative from California-based mobile ad startup Adzookie, which just this week launched an effort to turn homes into giant advertising billboards

National garage sale encourages community spirit
Nice idea from the ‘Down Under’
Following on from the first event, set up last year in Bondi by Darryl Nichols, this year’s sale has already seen over 1500 sellers sign up across Australia. Listing a sale on the site is free, with the location and description of each registered sale appearing on the Trail's map and in local newspapers. Participants are encouraged to come up with unique and kooky titles for their sales as part of the sense of fun and community spirit the day hopes to foster, and the Garage Sale Trail website also offers these vendors tips — including advice on how to "keep your sale green". Members of the public taking part in this year's event will also be able to use the Trail's smart phone app, which lists the registered garage sales and can direct buyers towards them with voice-guided navigation.

Iceland Declares Independence from International Banks
It would be nice to see Americans exercise the same fierce independence!
Iceland is free. And it will remain so, so long as her people wish to remain autonomous of the foreign domination of her would-be masters — in this case, international bankers.

Nearly all revolutions, riots and panics are preceded by major food shortages, high taxes and high unemployment. View the video…


TIP-got an email for the IRS? Never open it as they never send emails-it’s a scam!

Complex Inferiority
A simpler tax code would be fairer, more efficient, less intrusive, and less infuriating.

How to fix our tax system
The main page of the Poor Man cites the need for a fairer, more simple tax system…one which doesn’t reward so many of the Fortune 1000. Here are few more ideas.

Keep it short. The Baltic countries are a great example of this-- the entire Estonian tax code is about 70 pages, roughly 1/1000th the size of the US tax code (which is still prone to so much interpretation). It takes about 15 minutes to fill out an Estonian return, and you can do it online.

Simplify it. When you have a tax code that's so complex it has given rise to a multi-billion dollar preparation industry, you have a problem. There are dozens of different forms at the IRS, and over 20 versions for the 1099 alone! This is a system that is prone to massive error and frustration.

Hong Kong is a great example of a simple system. Taxes are levied at a flat rate of 15% based on the "territorial principal" that only income derived from Hong Kong is taxed. There is no capital gains tax, no VAT, no estate tax, etc. And yet, the biggest problem the Hong Kong government faces regarding taxes is how to give away their massive surplus.

Keep it low. When you make it easy and painless for people to pay taxes, it removes most of the incentives for them to cheat. In Singapore, tax rates are among the lowest in the world with a maximum rate of 20%. The capital gains rate is zero. The corporate rate varies from 0% to 17%.

The federal tax code, which in 1913 could be published as a single 400-page book, today occupies some 72,000 pages. In the last 10 years alone, reports National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson (your designated friend at the IRS), "there have been approximately 4,428 changes to the tax code." The instructions for filling out Form 1040, which took up two pages 75 years ago, are 179 pages long this year. Compiled from various sources.

WARNING: Immature Subject Matter. Viewer discretion is advised.

The problem in the US-too many special interests who buy political favor! The odds of a simpler tax system happening in my lifetime - probably zero.

Newly planted trees require frequent watering. Perforate small used pails at the bottom and set by each tree and fill with water. Water will trickle out slowly and soak into the soil.

Parting thought-a concern from a reader>>restoring our country-Part II

Swarms of government locusts have consumed the nation

Q. I find your newsletter and site loaded with much needed information. Government agencies and bureaucrats at all levels have overwhelmed America with laws which have undermined the rights of the people. The Constitution and Bill of Rights are becoming a distant memory. How would you restore the country? --Frightened Mom

A. It will be tough. Our country may already be too far gone. It took politicians (of both parties) about 30 years to bankrupt our nation, strangle its people in red tape, destroy jobs and small business. The bureaucrats have too much authority to create rules, regulations and fines which have decimated our country. They’re the swarms of cancerous locusts which have choked the land. People have begun to awaken to these facts and few are happy with our political system, which is in danger of becoming a socialist state.

I do not ever advocate a violent overthrow of the government (it may come to that of its own accord). Here are some suggestions:

>Get involved. Join the Tea Party, support foundations which fight government abuse, write letters to your representatives, newspapers, meet with likeminded groups and work together, stage recalls of local politicians who are anti-citizen, file court challenges, withdraw financial support of government wherever possible.

>Stop supporting anti-citizen corporations. Corporations, such as GE (government electric) pay no taxes, ship US jobs overseas and buy off a lot of politicians using the record profits they make using sweatshop labor. Washington policies encourage this.

>Become more selective in your TV viewing. Most network television is crap and so are their nightly newscasts. Honestly, how many more “reality” shows can our nation stomach as a diversion to the corruption of our nation? I get more real news from the BBC than from the major networks in this country. When is the last time any of them created a hard hitting documentary? Programs such as Dateline, have become canned ‘murder mysteries’ of the week. Since John Stossel left 20/20, the show has become anemic. Occasionally, 60 Minutes will live up to what made it famous.

>Become more self sufficient. Become self employed, learn homesteading skills, get off-the-grid, share newsletters and websites such as ours with others.

Watch this video by Gerald Celente, famed trend watcher to get more answers.

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New self sufficiency books added weekly

Don't Get Caught With Your Pantry Down-New 11th Ed.

Go Green-save money!

Free Money assistance for women, businesses, more.

A Shallow Planet Production

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Top Tech Free Downloads, Stopping Electronic Thieves

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

In This Issue:

1. Cash in on your Quirky invention
2. Poor Man’s Diabolical Plot to…
3. Stop throwing away $-Take advantage of the freebies
4. The Penny Revolution-helping others
5. Free DIY garden & landscape plans, leather working
6. Insiders Report-gov’t growth continues despite deficit
7. How to stop an electronic pickpocket

"To preserve independence...we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and Liberty, or profusion and servitude. ... The fore horse of this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follow that, and in its turn wretchedness and oppression." --Thomas Jefferson

Inflation wreaking havoc…follow up on government seizure laws

I did another one of my informal surveys among local business owners about how inflation is wreaking havoc on their suppliers (ultimately, you and I, the consumer). They all report there are some items they no longer buy due to increased cost.

The local Kroger manager told me folks are still spending as much, but getting less due to more money going into the gas tank, and fewer people are getting fill ups, mostly putting in what they can get by with in order to get to work.

And, as we all know by now, government statistics lie. Inflation affects all of us.

Finally, in regard to the piece we did on our insane asset seizure laws, a few wrote telling us they weren’t aware the situation was so bad. It’s bad and it’s one of the reasons why red tape and stupid regulation hamper this country.

Another form of government abuse (another agency) happened to an associate of mine, Russell Vernon, who owned the West Point Market in Akron, OH. Russ and I had both earned Entrepreneur of the Year and a Presidential Citation for our business efforts. He for his market, me for the business shows and business newspapers I owned (the first for Akron). We got a nice write up from its sponsor, Venture Magazine.

A few years later, Vernon got hit with a lawsuit by the EEOC (Equal Opportunity Commission) alleging he discriminated against Blacks. Vernon’s market, at the time, employed 100 people and his applications never asked what race a person was.

After spending $67,000 on legal fees, he was able to reach a ’settlement’ despite the fact he had never discriminated and no one ever filed a complaint. The EEOC, like so many other government agencies, were simply looking for another scalp to help justify its existence.

Just last week, a teen in Peoria, AZ got a bill from the city for $2000 for bleeding on the sidewalk after cutting himself. According to city officials, the bill was for the biohazard crew sent to clean up the blood droplets from the sidewalk. Talk about rubbing salt in the wound!

The police even realize what is going on. Just consider the following quote from from Police Chief Michael Reaves of Utica, Michigan....
"When I first started in this job 30 years ago, police work was never about revenue enhancement, but if you’re a chief now, you have to look at whether your department produces revenues.”

Government officials and bureaucrats could use a little compassion and common sense when it comes to dealing with the people they ‘serve.

“Anyone who is not reading your newsletter, is throwing money away. It always has good ideas that save our household money each issue.”

Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef.
It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking.

Resources-Use to your advantage…

Preparing Citizens at Home-government related PDF files on bio-hazards, community preparedness, medical and more…free

Cash in on Quirky Inventions
Each week this site introduces two new inventions, such as a kickstand for your iPod. Have an idea? Submit it at this site ($10 fee) & if your idea is chosen, it will be created and marketed.

Hate it when you love a song heard on TV but no idea who did it?
Odds are you’ll find that tune and who created or sang it here.

Penny Revolution is a series that shows how a small amount of money can transform the lives of the more than one billion people who live below the international poverty line, earning less than $1 a day…interesting program. Watch online or via cable TV. Get more at:

Tandy Leather still offers a variety of free patterns, supplies, books, etc.
Leather working fulfills a variety of needs from hobby to repairing saddles and tack.
Get their catalog and review their site.

Go here to view a variety of how-to videos for working with leather

Free Do It Yourself Garden and Landscape Project Plans and Guide Books…nice variety to choose from.

DIY Deck and Porch cleaner: Combine 1qt. Bleach, ½ cup powdered laundry detergent into 2gals. Of hot water. Scrub with stiff brush-works on any wood structure.

Free Software-good alternatives to Microsoft
1. Evernote - FREE ($5 a month if you upload more than 60MB of data)
Compare to: Microsoft OneNote ($79)
Evernote is like a super organized digital scrapbook. As you go through your daily tasks on the computer, you can toss just about anything in it -- pictures, web clippings, and PDF documents. Evernote even lets you search for text inside images, so you can snap a picture of a product or recipe and then find it without digging.
You can create notebooks around projects, folders of web clippings, and notes to organize lists. Then Evernote syncs your notes to the web so you can access them from your Windows PC or Mac, and even via an app for iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry, Android and Palm phones. You can also capture new pictures and notes on your smartphone while you're out, and those sync back to your main computer.

2. LibreOffice - FREE
Compare to: Microsoft Office ($249)
LibreOffice looks and feels much like Microsoft Office, and the resemblance isn't just skin deep! It lets you import files from Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and work on them and share them just as if you were using Office. You can even create new documents, spreadsheets, and presentations in Office's file formats, and your friends won't know the difference.

LibreOffice is open-source software, which is created by volunteers and by employees at corporations which use it. They don't mind sharing, so you're welcome to download it for your Mac or your Windows or Linux PC. More at:

10 Must-Have Free Downloads
Some downloadable software is so good that you just have to grab it. Unfortunately, often you have to pay for it after you try it out. But every once in a while, a must-have program is totally free. Such indispensable, no-cost programs are the hardest kind to find.

BRAND NEW Free YouTube Download! The program will work up to ten times faster now and you can get videos from YouTube on the fly!

Stop an electronic pickpocket from stealing the RFID from your credit or debit card (thieves use an RFID reader they can buy on eBay)-having multiple cards in your wallet or purse produces conflicting transmissions…or, shield your wallet with aluminum foil (really).

Sprinkle baking soda on your rugs and let sit overnight, then vacuum. Removes odors and leaves a fresh scent.

YOUR FREE FOOD 2 GO: Site to be ready April 9th
Sign up now to become a distributor & get your sample pack

Tapping free energy from artificial leaves
On the near horizon, a silicon ‘leaf’ what mimics photosynthesis…could make every home energy self -sufficient. MIT researchers report that a single leaf & a gallon of water could produce enough electricity to power a home for a day. Researcher, Daniel Nocera in Wired Magazine. -Interesting DIY section too!

The Insider Report
According to a recent Associated Press-GfK poll, approximately two-thirds of the American people believe that rising gasoline prices will cause significant hardship for their families over the next six months. Coincides with the rising price of oil, gold and silver.

Inflation of food and fuel has absorbed any tax cuts that Congress voted on least year. Indeed, it wouldn’t surprise me if domestic mayhem revolves around these inflated costs and the fact government benefits will vanish!

Just this week, the dollar plunged to new, multi-year lows against the Australian dollar, the Canadian dollar, and the New Zealand dollar.
And now, the ENTIRE U.S. Dollar Index — representing the dollar's value against ALL of the world's six major currencies — is a meager five points away from its lowest level in history!
U.S. Government now employs cash-sniffing dogs at most international airports. If you are carrying more than $10,000 in cash and don’t declare it to the Government when coming in or out of the U.S., your cash will be seized. $3.2 million has been seized at Logan Airport in 2010.
In the past two years, the Education Department increased its budget 41%, Dept. of Labor - 194%. Do you see now why we need to control spending and get rid of needless bureaucracy? Learn more about regulation we need to eliminate now at:
The Nanny State is thriving in Chicago where several districts now dictate what parents may or may not put into their child’s lunch box.

Let the microwave clean itself-fill a bowl with water and a squeeze of lemon, then microwave on high for a minute, let sit still for 3 minutes, then wipe it away.


Parting thought - Poor Man’s Diabolic Truth Exposed! My quest for world domination.

Q. There are boatloads of “prepper” sites and blogs out there. How does your differ?

A. Yes, there are many, many to choose from, each offering various insights and resources. I believe what sets ours apart is our broader approach. Not only do we offer a variety of researched political perspectives, but we include a large gateway of consumer resources which allow folks to save money, make money, fight consumer ripoffs, find a job and more.

When I started my first business newspaper in Akron, OH, we interviewed 100s of area businesses to find out firsthand what they might expect from such a publication. This shaped our editorial policy and proved highly successful. I didn’t have that luxury with this newsletter. We essentially started with a small core of supporters who felt the need for such a site given the downward slide of the economy and government encroachment.

Years and years ago, I made friends with John Shuttleworth, the founder of Mother Earth News. The influence he made on my life has stayed with me. Not long after that we had our own 38-acre farm and grew a lot of goodies. Once a month we had a large group of like-minded folks who met there and shared resources and food. This too left a lasting impact on how we’ve developed. That experience taught me the value of sharing and community.

This is one of the reasons we implemented our Suggestion Box plan. The goal was to encourage input from readers. The result has been marginal (our winner will be announced in the next issue). We do know many read this letter simply to take advantage of the useful freebies we announce in each issue. Others enjoy the political insights.

A year ago we tried hosting a free workshop offering ‘prepper’ information. It was a bust. Not even the local papers would carry our news release about the event. We may try offering one in the fall at our little Poor Man cabin and hide-away. We’ll see.

Along the way we have discovered many Americans are ‘asleep at the wheel.’ Our "leaders" are running the greatest economic scam in the history of the world, but unfortunately most Americans have no idea what is happening.
Why are Americans so clueless?
Well, the truth is that over time we have been turned into a nation of idiots.

We’re always seeking new ideas and resources to share with our readers. The tough part - getting folks to actually read the content! We strive to provide a variety of useful ideas and news in each issue…The Poor Man always needs direction and often relies on GPS (God Provided Sense). Part II in the next issue!

Suggestion Box Round Two Coming…We’ll be announcing our winner in the next issue and our new round with new prizes which will include a Pocket Fisherman.

Yours for world domination, the Poor Man!

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Keep our services free, visit our sites…help us to take over the world!

New self sufficiency books added weekly

Don't Get Caught With Your Pantry Down-New 11th Ed.

Go Green-save money!

Free Money assistance for women, businesses, more.

A Shallow Planet Production

Sunday, April 10, 2011

When Money Dies-Fiscal Meltdown Timetable

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

In This Issue:

1. Fiscal meltdown in spitting distance-when money dies
2. Woman lives in 90 sq ft apartment
3. More free building plans & other free goodies
4. Asset Forfeiture laws just an excuse to enrich police
5. Free Earth Day Workshops
6. Top 10 Best Freebie forums
7. The Power of Words-short film that will make you smile

"The ruling class has the schools and press under its thumb.
This enables it to sway the emotions of the masses."

-- Albert Einstein

Mandatory federal spending is going to surpass total federal revenue for the first time ever in this fiscal year. That was not supposed to happen until 50 years from now

Laurence Kotlikoff: Fiscal Meltdown in Spitting Distance

During the past year several readers asked me when the crap will hit the fan and my response was - an average of 18 months. According to Kotlikoff, that time-frame may come sooner.

(Laurence Kotlikoff is professor of economics at Boston University, president of Economic Security Planning Inc., and author of “The Healthcare Fix.” The opinions expressed are his own.)

The two parties are having a heated debate over the Republican plan to slice $61 billion off Uncle Sam’s projected $3.6 trillion budget. If the Republicans get their way, the deficit will fall from 9.5 percent of gross domestic product to 9.1 percent. If they don’t, they’ll probably shut the government for a couple of days. Then they’ll compromise on, say, a $40 billion budget cut, having proved they gave it their best shot.

Arguing over lowering our deficit by just 0.4 percent of GDP when we need to run massive surpluses to deal with the baby boomers’ impending retirement is, pick your metaphor — rearranging the Titanic’s furniture, Nero’s fiddling, Custer’s Last Stand.

Is this malign fiscal neglect, or has Congress somehow missed what its own Congressional Budget Office is indicating? CBO’s baseline budget updates suggest the date for reaching what Carmen Reinhart, Kenneth Rogoff and other prominent economists believe is a critical insolvency threshold — a 90 percent ratio of federal debt held by the public to gross domestic product — has moved four years closer, in just nine months
Read more: Laurence Kotlikoff: Fiscal Meltdown in Spitting Distance

Related Sidebar:

Food prices are up 57% since Obama took office.

Only you can prevent government abuse…
Consider the analysis and conclusion of South Carolina Rep. Mick Mulvany, a newer member of Congress who's been looking at Uncle Sam's cooked books and is fessing up to his constituents: "It's much, much worse than I expected." Rep. Mulvany's analysis does better than most to explain our situation as a country. His apt conclusion as noted in The Wall Street Journal:
"Picture a family of four with an income of $46,000, annual costs of $78,000 and a credit card debt of $281,000... these figures are roughly proportionate to federal government revenue, annual outlays, and accumulated national debt."

If you eliminate all national defense spending, make no payments on the national debt and eliminate all spending on education, infrastructure, agriculture, and housing, Congress would still be staring at annual $700 billion deficits as far as the eye can see.

Some $65 trillion in unfunded spending for entitlement programs are NOT based on some future estimate of spending; that back-breaking number represents the discounted net present value of the current spending curve. And all this assumes virtually zero inflation.
Gross notes that Uncle Sam's unrecorded debt burden is close to 500% of GDP – a net negative national worth of some $35-40 trillion!

For an interesting look at what happens to people and nation when money dies, read this 1975 classic-it’s free at this link.

One of the best tools I own is an electric bench grinder. My axe split through downed tree limbs like butter this week…I put on a nice edge on my machete and on an old hunting knife I found!

Resource Roundup for the week…

Talk about frugal living space! And we thought the Poor Man’s cabin was small.
Woman lives in 90 sq ft apartment in NYC-View her video

Related: Living in a Cobb Home-interesting and cheap!

Store your opened chunks of cheese in aluminum foil.
It will stay fresh much longer and not mold!

Emergency Preparedness & Disaster Recovery Resources
Geared mainly toward small government and community agencies, but useful

More great free DIY building plans-storage barns and more.
At 10 x 16 ft., this handsome building is large enough for most backyard needs. It has an interior partition so it serves double duty as a storage shed and an all-weather multi-purpose room. Double doors on the side and gable end make it easy to access the space.
A free illustrated step-by-step building guide, by Joseph Turini of Popular Mechanics Magazine, includes an isometric drawing showing all building details.

This project is planned to be easy for do-it-yourself builder.
( )
Click here to find more free shed and mini barn plans >>>
( )
Click here to find hundreds of inexpensive small DIY barn blueprints, prefabs and building kits >>>
( )

Free Earth Day Workshops at Home Depot

Get a Free Copy of the Complete Survivalist Magazine (just pay postage) likes to call themselves "The Robin Hood of online marketplaces," and there may be some truth to that.
The Webstore platform is much like eBay in the early days -except it's free! Buyers and sellers can come together and trade just about anything without membership fees, bidding fees, or selling fees. Low fees allow sellers to sell for lower prices and this attracts bargain hunters. The way Webstore works with no fees, is that they place advertising on the site and earn all of their revenue from that.

Free books, recordings and other goodies…share this one with friends…
Thousands of titles in the public domain that you can copy and download. It's not just books, the website includes photos, videos and recordings too. The site is called The Internet Archive.

The Top 10 Forums to Find the Best Free Stuff and Freebies

Use your hair conditioner to shave your legs. It's cheaper than shaving cream and leaves your legs really smooth. It's also a great way to use up the conditioner you bought but didn't like when you tried it in your hair.

Recycle ink jet cartridges OR get a check from

Recycle electronics at, which donates to renewable energy initiatives or plants a tree for every device you donate.

Buy Second Hand to save money & reduce waste at these outlets:
These sites also sell, so you can some bucks here too!

NOW! A Breakthrough Into Little-Known Lead Generation Techniques!
No need to waste your time, effort & money any longer. Julian Lee
is willing to share his confidential secrets on how to generate a
list of quality HOT prospects that will repeatedly buy from you.
Don't miss his free video here

Important Information
You Make Up To $247/Sale!
Watch the Video For Complete Details!

Free-Cooking with kids site, offers easy recipes

Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store.
If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster.

Events that affect our lives…

OPEC Ministers: We Can't Keep Oil Below $120

OPEC ministers on Wednesday brushed aside worries that inflated fuel prices will slow economic growth, saying there was little more they can do to rein in $120-a-barrel crude…that means you’ll be paying more - for EVERYTHING!
The IEA and OPEC remain at odds on the root causes of soaring crude prices. The agency points to roaring demand from Asia and a reviving West.
"The price began rising in the fourth quarter of 2010 because demand exceeded supply by 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd). At that point stocks were falling and companies were willing to pay more for oil," Jones said.
OPEC sees a market divorced from the realities of supply and demand, driven by political unrest and its worst fears.
Prices are being stoked by speculators rather than any shortage of supply.


New Dollar Coin Rumored to no longer have ‘In God We Trust’
Although it took Canadians quite awhile to accept the ‘loon’ as a replacement for the paper dollar, many Americans are reluctant to use coins (as are retailers) and the attempt at replacing paper dollars has not done well.

The government’s assumptions and values used in this study are fascinating. Here are a few:
Because coins circulate more slowly than bills, 1.5 coins will be needed for every 1 bill (note).
Dollar bills have a lifespan of 40 months while coins have a lifespan of 34 years.
A dollar bill costs 2.7 cents to produce while a dollar coin costs 15 cents each.
There are 9.5 billion dollar bills in circulation today.
There are 3 billion dollar coins in circulation today, with an additional billion in Federal Reserve vaults

According to, “In God We Trust” will now be on the rim of the new coins.


While the Constitution has been largely ignored over the last 80 years, the document is very real, and its purpose is clear: to limit greatly the powers of the federal government.

Parting Thoughts-Obnoxious, Anti-Citizen-Asset Forfeiture laws!
It ‘ain’t just for the drug war, it’s a means of keeping cops in cash

Civil forfeiture laws represent one of the most serious assaults on private property rights in the nation today. Under civil forfeiture, police and prosecutors can seize your car or other property, sell it and use the proceeds to fund agency budgets—all without so much as charging you with a crime. Unlike criminal forfeiture, where property is taken after its owner has been found guilty in a court of law, with civil forfeiture, owners need not be charged with or convicted of a crime to lose homes, cars, cash or other property.

Five days before Christmas, Cheryl Sanders of CA was pulled over for speeding in Sulphur, LA. Instead of giving her a ticket, they asked to search her car. Inside the trunk they claimed they found a hidden compartment and despite not being able to find drugs, they arrested her anyway and she was taken to jail for a body cavity search which turned up nothing nor did she have a criminal history. She was freed, but they kept her car because the car was suspected of being involved with drugs!

It’s more profitable for law enforcement to go after the ‘little fish’ because they don’t have the resources to fight back; it’s legalized bounty hunting. In NJ, police agencies used $500,000 in forfeited funds for entertainment purposes. --Carol Thomas, former Sheriff

This is just one of 100s of examples of this happening to honest Americans who have done nothing wrong. According to Steven Kessler, former attorney with of New York’s asset forfeiture unit, “the focus is no longer on combating crime, it’s on fundraising.”

You may recall a 60 Minutes piece where police in CA broke into a man’s home in the middle of the night, shooting him dead while his horrified wife looked on. Police told her they suspected her husband of growing pot on his huge ranch. Turns out this was a lie, they simply wanted to seize his property for its multi-million dollar value. Eventually, the police had to settle a lawsuit in the millions for their lies.

Americans are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, but civil forfeiture turns that principle on its head. With civil forfeiture, your property is guilty until you prove it innocent. These laws may have started out, as they so often do, with good intent, that of targeting drug kingpins, but law enforcement can go after everyone, on a whim.

Asset forfeiture - definition & outcomes-Administrative forfeiture is the process by which property may be forfeited to the United States without judicial involvement. Federal seizing agencies perform administrative forfeitures. Seizures must be based on probable cause. The authority for a seizing agency to start an administrative forfeiture action is found in 19 U.S.C. § 1607.
Administrative forfeiture can be used to seize and forfeit the following:

• any amount of currency;
• personal property valued at $500,000 or less, including cars, guns, and boats;
• hauling conveyances of unlimited value.

Law enforcement officers seizing cash and other assets under the pretext of forfeiture and then just keeping them without reporting the seizure is just wrong and these criminals need to meet some justice!
Suggested reading: Mugged by the State by Randall Fitzgerald

This will make you smile. Watch this short, touching film about the use of words…AND share it with friends.

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Get a Credit Card-Even w/ Marginal Credit

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

In This Issue

1. Debt Man’s Curve-how corporations screw America
2. How to get a credit card, even with marginal credit
3. Whole House Surge suppressor resources
4. How to erase yourself from the web
5. How to find a job in America today
6. Donald Trump upsets the hosts of the View-video

Our government has no common sense, only mindless policies by insensitive bureaucracies that defy fairness and common sense. Stupidity of regulation at the federal and state level cost each American family more than $20,000. --Randall Fitzgerald, writer for Reader’s Digest & author of Mugged by the State.

Debt Man’s Curve…how corporations screw America
Virtually every major agricultural commodity has soared in price over the past 6 months to a year.
During a recent meeting with USA TODAY's editorial board, Wal-Mart CEO Bill Simon said that rising inflation in the United States is "going to be serious" and that Wal-Mart is "seeing cost increases starting to come through at a pretty rapid rate." But Wal-Mart is not the only major corporation that says that inflation is coming. Hershey has just announced price increases of about 10 percent on their entire line of products.

Meanwhile, the average American continues to live in ‘la-la-land’.

The following is how many Americans actually plan their week....
Monday: Watch Dancing With The Stars
Tuesday: Watch The Dancing With The Stars Results Show
Wednesday: Watch American Idol
Thursday: Watch The American Idol Results Show

At this point, most people in this country cannot even intelligently discuss the pressing issues of our day. The quality of US TV continues to erode, appealing to a 7th grade level rather than offer any hard-hitting documentaries or informational programming.
In fact, 63 percent of Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 cannot find Iraq on a map and 90 percent of Americans in that same age group cannot find Afghanistan on a map.

Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher recently said the following....
"If we continue down on the path on which the fiscal authorities put us, we will become insolvent, the question is when."

The IMF (Int’l Monetary Fund) head is telling the President we need to double the amount of taxes Americans pay in order to stave off collapse!

According to Gallup, the number of Americans that are either unemployed or working part-time but desiring full-time work actually rose from 19.8 percent in February to 20.3 percent in March…you should know by now you cannot trust government numbers!

Meanwhile, as we’ve reported as far back as three years ago, corporations like GE (Government Electric) paid no taxes, indeed, they got a $3.2 billion refund as they have the best tax law firm in the business working for them. The US share of corporate taxes has plunged to 6.6 percent from its high of 30 percent in 1950. Citizens have had to pick up the slack.

Corporations had near record earnings last year - $1.68 Trillion in pre-tax profits! They did this by laying off workers and making those who remained, work harder…plus the generous tax breaks they got from Congress due to stupid loopholes.

Virtually every major investor is dumping dollar assets and as I warned a year ago, (even Rush Limbaugh is talking about it now) your 401(k) IRA is in danger of being nationalized-with the Fed buying most of the debt (no one else is buying US long term debt) and our national ponzi scheme beginning to crumble, it doesn’t bode well.

Given that we’re in debt to the tune of 44 Trillion dollars with current and future unfunded liabilities, we’ll never pay this off, even if we taxed all Americans at 100% of their earnings. It’s mathematically impossible. Perhaps we should create a new TV show - The Ostrich Family!

According to the Economic Policy Institute, almost 25 percent of U.S. households now have zero net worth or negative net worth. Back in 2007, that number was just 18.6 percent.

Weekly Resources I provide a place for readers to learn how to make gift baskets,

Download link for Wordpress for DumbDumbs
Here's the link-it’s free :

New organization promotes use of ‘honest money’ use-UT already signed into law!
Economic security. Political stability. Opportunity. Honor. Liberty. Integrity. These are hallmarks of what America stands for…thanks Fred for sharing this!

According to a recent article posted on the website of the American Institute of Economic Research, the purchasing power of a U.S. dollar declined from $1.00 in 1913 to 4.6 cents in 2009.

New Online Colleges website,
Good compiled, unbiased and updated list of every school
that offers an Online College degree in the US.

Houseplants help remove chemicals released into the air by paints, cleaners, glues and other products. The plants’ physiological processes help remove some volatile organic compounds (VOCs) during the day, and tiny organisms in the soil remove VOCs when the plant is not as active at night.
Plants that remove the most VOCs: Purple waffle plant, wax plant, asparagus fern, English ivy and the purple heart plant

Outdoor Survival Supplies & Kits

Instant oatmeal is as healthy as slow-cooked oatmeal-both lower cholesterol

Create a Personal Web Profile…
Without having to know all about the complexities of web site construction. Create a free account here and use the site to tell folks about your interests, career and link it to your social networks if you life - no charge. Useful for creating an online business card. or

Better Gardening-learn more about spring annuals, bulbs, lawns & more.
From Cornell University

Is your credit rating marginal?
Having at least one credit card is often a necessity in today’s society. It’s tough to rent a car, get a hotel room, etc. without one. Of course, using a pre-paid ’green dot’ debit card will usually do the trick…even for opening a PayPal or eBay account. The number of Americans with low credit card scores continues to rise. If your credit score is middling and you want to rebuild a credit score, consider these cards:

>>Capital One Standard Platinum. They usually accommodate folks with scores in the 690-720 range. You’ll find a prequalification tool in its site so you can gauge which card you’re likely to qualify for and there fees aren’t crazy (some like First Premier asks an incredible 59.9%). Call 800-99-7070 or visit there site at:

>>Citi Secured Mastercard. A secured card are available to those even with very low credit card scores but they require a cash deposit (savings account)…their annual fee is $29 and has been offering a 18.24% interest rate. Your deposit can also be invested in interest bearing CDS. Call 800-726-2109 or visit their site at:

The last I heard, Bank of America also offers a secured credit card program too. It doesn’t hurt to check with banks in your local area too, perhaps some credit unions might work with you as well. Here’s a link to the GreenDot site-get $10 added to your account with a direct deposit plan.

Whole House Suppressor can protect electronic devices-save money
It’s not just laptops, computers, and TVs which can get zapped by power surges, electrical storms and the like, your fridge, ranges and dishwashers that can be damaged from a surge. Although it’s recommended you have this device installed by an electrician, many are not difficult to add on beneath a circuit breaker panel as a DIY project. Here are a few resources:

Make yourself a batch of all-purpose cleaner-Fill a spray bottle with equal parts water and white vinegar and use to clean almost anything.

Get Signups For Any Program You Promote
Truth About Matrices. A MUST SEE!
New to online marketing?
230,000 Members Pay You Money, Join for FREE today!

Erase Yourself From the Web
Drunken party pictures from college haunting you? Fed up with Facebook? Victim of Internet overwhelm? Here's how to protect yourself by wiping your data off the Web…run an online background search on yourself and more.

Related story-Resource: Protect your ID for free
Fighting identity theft? It doesn't have to cost -

Remember to store foot powder & keep a supply of moleskin on hand to help with blisters.

Top 25 Business at home ideas

Whole Foods & the Greenest Grocery Store in the World
Showcase facilities are a powerful learning tool for companies that are implementing sustainable business practices, as illustrated by the new Whole Foods store
Read more:

DIY Air Freshener-avoid ‘all-natural’ products containing phthalates (causes hormonal imbalances). In a spray bottle, combine 1 tsp. of baking soda, 1 tsp. lemon juice, 2 cups water and spritz as needed-saves about $48 a year on store-bought brands!

The Truth About Deficits and the Debt: America needs to cut spending now.
Poll after poll reveal that deficits and the debt have become defining issues in American politics. But while these issues are indeed important and the American people are justifiably concerned about the level of debt our nation is racking up, they are only symptoms of the real problem: overspending. America is living beyond its means and is projected to continue to do so into the foreseeable future.

Moreover, deficits have reached a level that economists haven’t really studied before. Current circumstances remind Kling of “a guy jumping out of a building from the 10th floor, passing the third floor, and saying, ‘It’s all fine so far.’” Deficits do not matter up to a certain level. But at what level do we hit the ground with a resounding splat?

Reason columnist and Mercatus Center economist Veronique de Rugy explains why America must cut spending now.

The Parting Rant

How to find a job in America today…

After completing some consulting work for a California based publisher several years ago, they offered me a job paying $25,000 a year plus bonuses. No one can live on that income today and I politely refused. Beside, at the time, I was still generating that much on eBay! Ironically, they had already paid me that much for a couple months of work!

I had started on eBay earlier to sell my personal library of nearly 10,000 books I had accumulated over the years, some from publishers who sent me copies to review in my weekly column. I started at a time when people still read books. With few exceptions, the book business has dwindled as more Americans choose DVDs over reading. This had always been a proven sideline for me, something I enjoy as I’ve always had a passion for books. (I also donated thousands of books over the years to prisons, libraries and charities).

American workers need to adapt or die. Good jobs aren’t coming back and the world is changing, not for the better as far as America is concerned. I spent nearly a year on the road preaching to newspaper publishers about the importance of adding websites to their operation as another profit center…many listened, many did not. Of course, that industry is now in a severe decline.

It was ironic that a few years prior to this I had coined the phrase (in a weekly business column I wrote at the time) that burger flippers can’t afford $40K cars. At the time, US corporations were in full swing of shipping US jobs overseas, and that’s never let up thanks to stupid government policies which actually encourage these actions.

It would seem the ‘in-demand’ jobs today revolve around being a greeter at WalMart, waiting tables, or assisting the elderly.

According to a recent report from the National Employment Law Project, higher wage industries accounted for 40 percent of the job losses over the past 12 months but only 14 percent of the job growth. Lower wage industries accounted for just 23 percent of the job losses over the past 12 months and a whopping 49 percent of the job growth

We continue to lose jobs to illegal aliens and offshore sweat shops and countries like India. The dynamics of economics continues to escape most people, they are only interested in the kind of job they might find and if it will cover their monthly obligations. Increasingly, that is difficult to do as we see from another rise in foreclosures and the anemic job market.

There will be no recovery until we recover decent paying jobs, period. As politicians continue to waffle on our domestic problems, the decimation of America will continue.

Finally, although I’m not overly concerned about Obama’s birth certificate, Donald
Trump is and he upset those gals on the View in this regard-watch it here.

That’s all folks, until we meet again, Happy Trails, The Poor Man!

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Don't Get Caught With Your Pantry Down-New 11th Ed.

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YOUR FREE FOOD 2 GO: Site to be ready April 9th
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A Shallow Planet Production