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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Are American Consumers Tapped Out?

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

For Independent Minded People!

ISSN 2161-5543

"Nullification is not a 'defense' recognized by law, but rather a mechanism that permits a jury, as community conscience, to disregard the strict requirements of law where it finds that those requirements cannot justly be applied in a particular case."
-- David L. Bazelon
(1909-1993) Chief Judge, United States Court of Appeals


From The Smiling Dog Saloon Files



In This Issue:

1.        American consumers are tapped out

2.       7 Tips to Keep Your Furnace Running Well

3.       Backyard chickens for eggs, 21 fail-safe to get a fired started

4.       Garbage cans for food storage

5.       Automatically Guilty-Government enjoys seizing your bank accounts


Are American consumers tapped out?

By Robert Romano

The economy grew at a 2.8 percent annualized rate in the third quarter, reports the Bureau of Economic Analysis, up from 2.5 percent in the second quarter and 1.1 percent in first quarter.

Meanwhile, personal consumption has steadily slowed down the past three quarters from 2.8 percent, to 1.8 percent, to 1.5 percent in the third quarter.

Why the contradiction? Consumer spending is usually thought to drive economic growth, not run contrary to it. So what gives?

"The acceleration in real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth in the third quarter primarily reflected a deceleration in imports," among other items, the Bureau reports.

Which tells you much of what you need to know, since the trade deficit counts against the GDP. When the trade deficit narrows, economic growth is seemingly boosted, and when it increases, it detracts from reported growth. Sure enough, this year the trade deficit has dropped from $523 billion in the first quarter, to $509 billion in the second, and to $493 billion today.

Yet the slowdown of imports corresponds directly to the slowdown of consumer spending — Americans were buying less of everything. That is actually not a good sign going forward.



PM’s Roundup of Useful Resources…


Howard at has put up a nice list of “old” vs. “new” chemical names that you might find useful someday: “As you may know, I am always researching old books to learn the ways of our ancestors. One thing I have had a rough time with is the old chemical names. The following is…



Remember that preparedness isn’t just about being as self-sufficient as possible, it’s also about ensuring the systems you rely upon (even grid-tied ones) are functioning as well. Of course, I would suggest hiring a licensed HVAC tech to look over your furnace but these are some simple suggestions you can follow to do the majority…


Raising Backyard Chickens for Eggs
Have you ever thought about raising your own backyard chickens for eggs to save money? Doing so may have many economical and health benefits.


Rubbing two sticks together takes a lot of time, effort, skill,
and practice (and still doesn't guarantee a fire every time).

Find out 21 fail-safe ways to start a fire here:


Finding a new job may require updated job skills. Here's how to do that inexpensively
read more here


Large steel cans (such as the 31-gallon cans mentioned in the article) are a great way to store bulk foods to keep them safe from pests, accidental punctures, and more. About the only drawback I see is that they’re nearly impossible to move once loaded down with food so be sure to enact a variety… (the Poor Man uses smaller cans)


Take a peek at our new ecommerce storefront…


Newly Updated-Our Ready for Anything Survival Files



The Nanny State- Your Weekly Dose of Government Misinformation


Police State America

I have written some guest blogs in the past dealing with aspects of the issue of America becoming a Police State and will link to them at the end of this piece. There are so many issues that call for our concern and attention in this country today, that dealing with the entire dysfunctional state of our country becomes daunting due to the wealth of material.


The issue of our country’s continuing descent into a”Police State” equaling all we know of the vile systems in the USSR and the former East Germany is an issue that concerns me.. The situation is  dire and the consequences have produced not only horrible injustices, but also the many unneeded maiming and deaths of innocent individuals. Our country imprisons more people per capita than any other country in the world by far. Part of the reason for that is the “War on Drugs” an abject failure that falls most heavily upon people with low incomes and people of color. One such incident caused Professor Turley to pen two blogs this week. They were about a man falsely suspected of drug possession who had all his bodily orifices and cavities checked in the local Arizona police’s vain attempt to find evidence of guilt. None was found and the procedures were not only traumatic, but invasive. Thus the “War on Drugs” is one major contributing force to turning our country into a Police State.


(Turley has been advisor to the Poor Man on his series on how to rid the nation of dysfunctional politicians and to restore America to semblance of the free country it once was).


Continued here:


The Parting ThoughtNothing to worry in the land of the free!


 Government Seizing Bank Accounts-Are you Automatically Guilty?

Consider the plight of Terry Dehko and his daughter Sandy Thomas. They run a small grocery store in Fraser, Michigan. Because their insurance only covers a cash limit of $10,000, they frequently make smaller deposits. One day last January, the government seized $35,000 of their assets, not in the store, but in the store account.

Officials said Dehkos had violated federal money-laundering rules, which forbid people to “structure” their bank deposits so as to avoid the $10,000 threshold that triggers banks to report a transaction to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

There was no evidence of guilt. Dehko was not charged with any crimes, and the IRS supported Dehko's claim. Nonetheless, Dehko is offered 20% of the amount taken from him.

Grabbing Hand of the Law

The Economist explains the plight of Dehko in its report The Grabbing Hand of the Law

In criminal cases, the government can confiscate assets only after a conviction. Under “civil forfeiture”, however, it can grab first and ask questions later. Property can be seized merely on the suspicion that it has been involved in a crime. Citizens have no right to a swift hearing. For a small business, that can be fatal.

In many civil-forfeiture cases the agencies that seize the assets keep most of the proceeds, and can use them to pad their budgets or buy faster patrol cars. It is hard to know how common this is, but the Institute for Justice (a libertarian law firm that is representing the Dehkos) notes that the federal government shared $450m of seized assets with state and local authorities in 2012.

The grabbers do not always prevail. A motel owner in Massachusetts recently won back his motel after prosecutors tried to seize it because one guest in 13,000 had been arrested for drug offences. In October in California, prosecutors who were trying to seize a building because two of the tenants were marijuana dispensaries (which are legal under Californian law), gave up and let the landlord keep it.

But this is scant comfort for the Dehkos, who are struggling to hold on to the store they have run since 1978. “It’s kind of scary that they can do this to you,” says Ms Thomas. “In America, you’re supposed to be innocent until proven guilty.”


On a Related Note…

If you have cash in a US bank, you can expect to have the federal government take it all the next time US banks find themselves in trouble.  

The days of the federal government stealing money from taxpayers, or borrowing it from the Federal Reserve, to save troubled banks -- as in they did in the 2008 crisis -- may be over. Congress is considering imitating the theft in Cyprus and letting troubled banks "bail in" depositor money in order to make themselves solvent. 

Jim Sinclair, chairman and chief executive officer of Tanzania Royalty Exploration Corp., and whose family started Goldman Sachs, Salomon Brothers, Lehman Brothers, and others, has been warning of this for a while. 

“Bail-ins are coming to North America without any doubt, and will be remembered as the ‘Great Leveling,’ of the ‘great Flushing’. Not only can it happen here, but it will happen here...It stands on legal grounds by legal precedent both in the US, Canada and the UK."

The monetary system is much closer to collapse and the bail-in is imminent. In fact, US banks presented the Federal Reserve with a bail-in plan to pay for large banks' restructuring in the event of a future crisis, The Wall Street Journal reports. The plan was presented to the US Federal Reserve in an attempt to preempt tougher rules from the regulators.

The private meeting was reportedly attended by officials from Wells Fargo & Company, Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc. and several other banks. The bail-in mechanism would be designed to place a greater burden on creditors, as opposed to the taxpayers (theft victims), in the event of a bank’s collapse


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escapeartist said...

Most citizens are woefully ignorant of what is happening to our country, they love drinking the government dispensed Kool Aid!

DAR said...

I know I' tapped out and this BS Obamacare is going to damned near bankrupt me!