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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

3 Men W/ Nothing to Do Roast a Pig, Free Samples by Evaluating

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin

A Digest of urban survival resources

ISSN 2161-5543

In This Issue:

1.       Three men with nothing to do show how to roast a pig

2.      Get more free stuff by being a product tester

3.      High bank fees push more to pre-pad debit cards

4.      Brokers not allowed to sell gold to US citizens after July

5.      The Fiscal Implosion is upon us unless Congress acts…

“Although we give lip service to the notion of freedom, we know that government is no longer the servant of the people but, at last, has become the people's master. We have stood by like timid sheep while the wolf killed -- first the weak, then the strays, then those on the outer edges of the flock, until at last the entire flock belonged to the wolf."
-- Gerry Spence
Lawyer and author

High bank fees driving more people to pre-paid debit cards

   Prepaid debit cards are growing in popularity, especially among those who no longer have a bank account (about one in five & growing).  Despite new fee regulation, most banks have navigated ways around those restrictions and now have different fees which ding your balance.

Of course, pre-paid cards have few regulations and a maze of fees attached to their use and many are calling for new regulations when the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau launches in July.  Still, for many, a pre-paid card is cheaper than a checking account and offers a convenient means of paying bills for many.

The amount of cash expected to be loaded to such cards is expected to reach $552 billion next year.  It is the fastest growing method of paying bills.  The IRS issued tax refunds on pre-paid cards to more than 600,000 households this year.  GreenDot, the largest issuer of these cards has more than 4.3 million cards in use.

Not all prepaid cards are bad, but fees are common. You need to evaluate each offer to determine whether a prepaid card is right for you. For parents who want to monitor and control their children’s spending, while teaching their children how to responsibly handle money management, prepaid debit cards are some of the preferred tools.  Here is a link to help you evaluate the best cards that are available:

Degunk your BBQ grill by spraying a solution of half water and half vinegar to loosen burnt on foods from the surface and whisk away with a steel wire brush.

PM’s ‘Betty Schocker’ Compendium of resources

Deer Defense - Each year crops are ruined from deer.  Fight back with free strategies at this site:

Summer Jobs for Teens

Find short term positions at parks, hotels, etc. at:

Get more for your money - Pricing and information on health care, home repairs, pet care and other services at:

Find discounts for seniors in your area

A new site offers seniors a means of finding discounts for goods and services in their own neighborhood.  Search by zip code for discounts on everything from travel to pet services and unlike Groupon, there is no need to purchase coupons.  Go to:

Tips to save money…

Save up to 60% on gift cards from your favorite merchants by visiting such sites as:

Don’t forget to sign up for your favorite retailer’s newsletter or face book site to learn of upcoming sales and special offers.  Before spending your cash, do a Google search to find coupon codes or research a site like: or check the grandma of all coupon sites at: where you can often find deals better than your Sunday newspaper.

Clean and freshen your toilet by pouring a cup of distilled vinegar into the bowl and let sit overnight.  Scrub well and flush.

Work at home resources for women

Coupon Database, Stockpiling tips, frugal living ideas and more…

Holiday garlic-bourbon grilling meat marinade:  Blend ½ cup of bourbon, ¼ cup molasses, 1 Tbs each oil and balsamic vinegar and two tsp. of minced garlic - apply to your favorite steak!

Three Men With Nothing Better to do show you how to roast a whole pig!

A few years ago we held our annual family reunion at our farm and I roasted a whole pig using the pit method.

 To build your own underground  pit to roast a pig in, you'll need a piece of clear ground. The clearing will need to measure approximately twenty feet by twenty feet square. In the middle of the square, you'll need to dig a hole for the  pit. (Place the dirt you dug out of the hole nearby because you're going to need it later when you roast the pig.) The size of the hole will depend on the size of the pig you're going to roast. A hole that measures three feet wide, is five feet long, and is a foot deep should fit the average-sized pig. If that's too large or small for the pig you're going to roast, then adjust the measurements as needed. You want the underground  pit to just fit the pig and the rocks and leaves you're going to use.

The next step in this project is to gather together plenty of dry kindling wood, firewood, and several round rocks. Ash and Birch trees make the best kindling and firewood, but other types of wood can be used as well. The rocks should be about four to five inches in diameter.

Then, line the middle of the underground  pit with the kindling wood. Place several pieces of the dry firewood on top to cover the first layer. Place a thick layer of rocks on top of the firewood. Now that the three layers are in place, light the kindling wood. It will need to burn at least an hour and a half, maybe more.

As soon as the kindling starts to burn, it will ignite the dry firewood. The firewood, in turn, will heat the rocks and the underground  pit. As the firewood burns down and turns to ashes, the rocks will drop to the bottom of the pit. Here are two links which provide the rest of the story on two variations of pit cooking a pig - enjoy!

Got a small tear in your window or door screen?  Fix it quick by coating the frayed area with clear nail polish to keep bugs out.

Alliance: In international politics, the union of two thieves
who have their hands so deeply inserted in each other's pockets
that they cannot separately plunder a third

The Nanny State Updates

Gold money was not private property in the 1930's, it was an instrument of the state, and subject to the state’s disposal. That is not the case now.

As a result of of the Dodd-Frank Act enacted by US Congress, a new regulation prohibiting US residents from trading over the counter precious metals, including gold and silver, will go into effect July 15, 2011,

Spot prices are exempt from this bill and its focus is on control and manipulation of gold/silver prices to ensure the ponzi scheme will survive. They must control the leverage and peer into the black market to truly assess their next steps. This talk about manipulating paper even more than it is now affects me ZERO. I hold natural physical. I will keep buying natures’ physical. The ponzi is falling apart, and if the 2 year rate is capped as rumors suggest, then this action is another reason to force big players to play by the big bankers rules in an effort to maintain price fixing going forward. They bought themselves another few months.

— Workers at a Tyson Foods poultry processing plant in Tennessee have opted to trade a paid Labor Day holiday for the Muslim celebration of Eid al-Fitr.

A 5-year contract approved by members of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union at the Shelbyville, Tenn., plant last November includes the change to accommodate Muslim workers.

"The negotiating committee made the holiday a top priority in contract talks," the union's Alabama and Mid-South Council Representative Randy Hadley said in a statement issued in June. "And we were able to get management to commit to it."

The change, which does not affect the company's 118 other plants, exchanges Labor Day for the Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadan. The new contract, negotiated last fall, also gives Muslim workers a prayer room

Companies are spending, but not on payroll

Two years into the recession and firms are beefing up their equipment and software purchases, but not payroll.  Since 2009 payrolls have grown only 2% while equipment expenditures have grown 26%…workers are getting more expensive while equipment is getting cheaper and the trend is unlikely to reverse.  According to the Commerce Dept., the economy is producing as much as it was before the downturn; but with 7 million few jobs.  --Source: New York Times

American consumers are in the early stages of an unprecedented retrenchment," Roach writes in the Financial Times. In the 13 quarters since the beginning of 2008, inflation-adjusted annualized growth in consumption has averaged just 0.5 percent, he says. Economic Zombie Land!

Fiscal Implosion

There's urgency in Washington to fix a problem that's been a long time coming: America's fast track to fiscal implosion. In The Heritage Foundation's just-released, expanded 2011 Budget Chart Book, you can see just how bad the country's spending problem is and how America racked up so much debt

But one need not peer into tomorrow to see the effects that rampant government spending can have on a nation's economy. Greece is in the midst of a continuing fiscal crisis brought about by years of irresponsible spending—and its woes are impacting world markets among fears of the country's possible default.

Reader Comment

I have always been frugal and it has paid off for me. But when I read that people are butchering their own animals and growing their own crops it sounds like a third world country. Step back and look how far we've fallen. I fear for this country. We've gone from one extreme to the next. What everyone needs to understand is that when the middle class is gone the country falls. Look at South America-a huge underclass, no middle class and a few wealthy people who come to the United States for medical care and shopping. We are headed in that direction fast. –YeahBaby

Make a paste of equal parts of salt and vinegar to get rid of bathtub ring - rub area with the paste, let sit 10 minutes, then rinse.

The Parting Shot - Another way to get freebies; test products

   A number of years ago we adopted Charlie, a lead pony from the Detroit Racetrack.  He was pretty emaciated when we got him but what a friendly disposition.  With lots of attention and pasture grass along with a special diet from Purina’s Equine Senior, he was back to his old self with a few months.

We sent photos of his progress to Purina and they responded with six coupons for free bags of their feed (at the time, a $100 value).  Folks who email reviews of products to the manufacturer, whether good or bad, often get valuable coupons.

You can sign up to review products at such sites as: to get free samples.  In exchange, they ask you to share your thoughts with friends on social networking sites.  Another site, will give you products and surveys for the items they send you.

If you entertain a lot, invite them to a product demonstration and get freebies for yourself and your guests.  Sign up at these sites: or - they’ll even help you plan your party.

Sample and test new products from major manufacturers by going to such sites as: or from General Mills at:

Most likely, there are other product testing sites so do an internet search for your areas of interest.

Share our information with your friends, they’ll thank you! 

Bruce ‘the Poor Man’

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