Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources
In This Issue:
1. Sites to sell off used baby items
2. Economic Hell for American Families
3. Is class warfare inevitable – Revolt of the Have nots
4. More ‘Bargain Master’ sites to save money
5. Signs you got too much sun – a little summer humor
No Man is ever free, and he couldn’t stand it if he were - William Faulkner
The 4th Most Dangerous Organization Against Freedom of Choice
ABC reports that 60 million Americans have to abide by various homeowners' association rules, which "decree everything from what color you can paint your house to how often your trash gets picked up and where you can park your car."
Rarely does a week go by where we don’t hear of some control-freak homeowners association trampling freedom of choice. It fully escapes me as to why anyone would choose to live under such rules…we have enough dumb rules and regulations forced upon us by federal, state and local governments.
Most recently, a Macedonia, OH man is being skewered by an association for flying the American flag from a pole vs. his home. Twenty of his neighbors are sticking by this war veteran.
There’s little question our freedoms are eroding and few in Congress (or mainstream America) seems to give a damn.
On another note…
An entry-level salary often doesn't go very far these days. According to a study by the Heldrich Center, the median starting salary for those who graduated from four-year degree programs in 2009 and 2010 was $27,000, down from $30,000 for those who graduated in 2006 to 2008, before the recession. (Try living on $27,000 a year -- before taxes -- in a city like New York, Washington or Chicago.)
With that in mind, read the short piece below about Economic Hell in America.
Heal a blister with moisturizer. Even though I do it all the time, you’re not supposed to pop a blister; instead, apply moisturizer and cover with a bandage for faster healing.
Pm’s Betty Shocker Compendium of Useful Resources
Sites for Selling Used Baby Goods
Kids grow quickly and are always in need of new clothing and other items. Here are a few online sites to sell off what you no longer need.
>Storkbrokers.com - Designed for parents who wish to trade or sell their baby related stuff without the headaches of eBay or Craigslist. Free registration and you can begin to buy and sell quickly.
>thredUp.com - Essentially an online clothing swap. To sell, members fill a medium postal service flat rate box and list the contents on the site. Buyers choose the box they want, then pay a service fee and shipping costs.
>SwapBabyGoods.com - You can sell or trade used baby gear through listings under its numerous categories to find items you’re interested in. Then contact the seller to arrange for either payment or a swap.
A Little Recipe to create a great holiday feast
LIME AND CHILI CHICKEN BREASTS
teaspoons chili powder
teaspoons packed brown sugar
teaspoons grated lime peel
teaspoon garlic powder
teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/4 lb)
teaspoons olive or canola oil
1 Heat gas or charcoal grill. In small bowl, mix chili powder, brown sugar, lime peel, salt, garlic powder and ground red pepper. Rub both sides of chicken with oil, then with spice mixture. 2 Place chicken on grill over medium heat. Cover grill; cook 10 to 15 minutes, turning once or twice, until juice of chicken is clear when center of thickest part is cut (170°F).
Signs you got too much sun
>To your husband’s delight, the only thing you can wear is a smile
>Your two-year-old keeps calling you Elmo
>Your friend is trying to match her lipstick to your arm
Run out of spackling? Use white toothpaste in its place using a spackling knife. Smooth and let dry and then repaint.
Conquer your debt
This site is highly acclaimed for its focus on money issues, providing a practical education in practical money matters.
Money advice and news you can use
Comprehensive site featuring daily deal alerts, a variety of useful calculators, financial columns and more.
More ‘bargain master’ sites to use…
Inside deals on laptops, GPS devices and more
Have fun on a budget
Free to join, pay half price for sporting events, comedy shows and more.
Daily Deals and Online Bargains
Has an active consumer forum which you can use to share your finds and cash-back deals
Heading outdoors? Protect yourself from bugs by rubbing your body with dryer sheets - keeps biting bugs away!
The Nanny State Updates…
New Executive Order from Obama - White House Rural Council
Will create public-private partnership (aka: Fortune 500 contributors) to capitalize on rural assets…
Before the federal government "fixes" the problems of rural America, perhaps it should focus on "fixing" many of the other problems it has created first....
*Growing numbers of military veterans cannot find jobs once they leave the U.S. military. In fiscal 2008, the Pentagon spent $450 million on unemployment benefits for military vets. In fiscal 2010, the Pentagon spent almost twice as much - $882 million. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate for military veterans between the ages of 18 and 24 is more than 30%.
According to a recent CNN poll, 48 percent of Americans believe that "another Great Depression" is likely within the next 12 months. Americans have been waiting for almost three years for a "recovery" to materialize, but instead there are all kinds of signs that the economy is about to get worse yet again. Inflation is rising but wages are not. There are millions of Americans that would do just about anything to get a decent job. The "misery index" is the highest it has been in almost 30 years. All of the recent polls show that the American people are more pessimistic about the economy than at any other time in recent memory.
Economic Hell For American Families
My husband lost his long-term job in 2009 due to budget cuts. Don’t worry, I said. I’m still working, and we have a year of our salary in savings. You’re smart, you’re educated, you’re a hard worker. You’ll find a job soon.
Two months later, my long-term job was sent to India.
I still wasn’t worried. I’m smart, I’m educated, and I’m a smart worker.
A year and a half later, I haven’t found new career yet. I’m 50. No one is going to hire me. I am working – at a Home Depot. At a 79% pay cut from my prior position. But it doesn’t pay for anything. My husband found a new position in his field – at a 62% pay cut from his prior position.
We lived off unemployment and our savings, until both ran out. We put our house and investment property on the market the day after I lost my job.
We haven’t had one offer.
We just had our Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged. Our foreclosure is still pending. No word yet when that will be done.
To add insult to injury, we owe Federal income taxes on the penalties we used to make withdrawals from our 401(k)’s to live off. My husband took a job in another state, and we were SHOCKED to learn that we owed NEW YORK STATE taxes on the income he earned in Mississippi – to New York state! Apparently there is some loophole that if you are a property owner in New York, but earn income in another state, you have to pay New York state income taxes on out of state earned income.
We’ve been told once our foreclosure is finalized, we may owe taxes on that as well.
What happened to our country
"Strictly speaking, it probably is not “necessary” for the federal government to tax anyone directly; it could simply print the money it needs. However, that would be too bold a stroke, for it would then be obvious to all what kind of counterfeiting operation the government is running. The present system combining taxation and inflation is akin to watering the milk; too much water and the people catch on."
-- Ron Paul
-- Ron Paul
The Parting Shot - Is Class Warfare on the horizon? Revolt of the Have-nots
I’ve written extensively on the huge income inequality gap, the decimation of the middle class and our jobs, falling values of homes, inflationary ravages on our buying power and more.
The economic plight and frustrations of the middle class barely get a sound bite on the national news and even less discussion in Washington (they won’t bite the hand that feeds them). Corporate controlled media rarely even mentions the new wave of violence being perpetrated by gangs of young people who attack and rob stores and citizens in such cities as Chicago.
The failure of our political parties to address the true needs of the nation has soured almost everyone on our system of government. Politics is more about divisive cultural warfare than problem solving. All of that leaves most of us feeling disconnected and with a sense that the middle class has been shoved over a cliff, now the forgotten class.
Yet, during the past three years, all of the corporations below made a lot of money. Yet all of them paid net taxes that were below zero for those three years combined.
How is that possible? Well, it turns out that instead of paying in taxes to the federal government, they were actually getting money back.
A third of all the wealth in the world is held in "offshore" tax havens.
What U.S. corporations are able to get away with is absolutely amazing.
The following figures come directly out of a report by Citizens for Tax Justice. These are combined figures for the tax years 2008, 2009 and 2010.
So for these corporations, their rate of taxation was actually below zero.
If you have not seen these before, you are going to have a hard time believing some of these statistics.....
Profits: $4.9 billion
Taxes: -$34 million
Profits: $3 billion
Taxes: -$23 million
Profits: $49.37 billion
Taxes: -$681 million
Profits: $9.7 billion
Taxes: -$178 million
Profits: $32.5 billion
Taxes: -$951 million
Profits: $2.1 billion
Taxes -$72 million
*American Electric Power*
Profits: $5.89 billion
Taxes -$545 million
Profits: $7.7 billion
Taxes: -$4.7 billion
Plainly, the Washington-Wall Street Cartel don’t give a damn about the country! Keep in mind the revolts in the middle east were started by a pissed off, unemployed younger population.
Yours for the ‘forgotten class’, the Poor Man
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