Poor Man Survival
Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources
"The physical capacity to coerce others can never generate a moral obligation to obey the dictates of [government] power."
-- George H. Smith
Many economists are concerned about a global recession. China's economy is growing much more slowly than in the past. The European Union is struggling to cover debts from some of its member states. The U.S. economy is growing, but at a pace that's slow at best. Here's an article that explains it well.
In order to have a thriving middle class, we need good paying middle class jobs. Unfortunately, our economy has been bleeding those kinds of jobs quite rapidly. For example, Halliburton just announced that it is eliminating 5,000 more jobs after getting rid of 4,000 workers at the end of last year.
During the Obama years, good paying middle class jobs have been getting replaced by low paying service jobs. At this point, 51 percent of all American workers make less than $30,000 a year.
Nearly half of all Americans believe the American dream is dead and the game is rigged in favor of the wealthy [it is] while 63% of all citizens do not have even $500 in their bank account to meet an emergency…yet Obama continues to beat his drum saying how wonderful a job he’s done and minorities in particular still swallow his Kool-Aid.
[Jobs are coming back, but pay isn’t. The median wage is still below where it was before the Great Recession. Last month, average pay actually fell.
What’s going on? It used to be that as unemployment dropped, employers had to pay more to attract or keep the workers they needed. That’s what happened when I was labor secretary in the late 1990s.
It still could happen – but the unemployment rate would have to sink far lower than it is today, probably below 4 percent.
Yet there’s reason to believe the link between falling unemployment and rising wages has been severed.
For one thing, it’s easier than ever for American employers to get the workers they need at low cost by outsourcing jobs abroad rather than hiking wages at home. Outsourcing can now be done at the click of a computer keyboard. http://robertreich.org/post/107998491550]
--Robert Reich, Former Secretary of Labor
And there is no way that you can support a middle class family with children on $30,000 a year.
We have an economy that is in the process of failing. We can see it in the explosion of subprime auto loans that are going bad, [Time magazine recently reportedly most Americans cannot afford the cost of a new car even with six year loans, which frequently go bad, hence the large number of auto leases now offered to the public] we can see it in the hundreds of retail stores that are shutting down, and we can see it in the tens of thousands of good paying energy jobs that are being lost.
During the Obama years, interest rates have been pushed to the floor, the Federal Reserve has created trillions of dollars out of thin air, and the size of our national debt is getting close to doubling.
Recently I've been seeing articles about negative interest rates. The first time I heard of that I thought that it was a misprint. How could an interest rate be negative? Here's a definition:
A negative interest rate means the central bank and perhaps private banks will charge negative interest: instead of receiving money on deposits, depositors must pay regularly to keep their money with the bank. (Investopedia.com)
Here's a report explaining how it's working in Sweden. So far the banks in Sweden haven't charged their customers for 'storing' their deposits. Mostly they've raised fees to cover their additional costs.
Janet Yellen, head of the Federal Reserve, recently stated that she wouldn't rule out negative rates here in the U.S. That would put domestic banks in a position that they either had to charge you for storing your savings or raise fees to cover the interest they pay to store reserves. Something I predicted more than a year ago that might happen.
The reason that central banks would resort to negative interest rates is to stimulate the economy as they’ve pretty much run out of other rabbits they can pull from the hat. They've found that more government spending doesn't seem to work and they've already lowered interest rates to zero. The idea is to force banks to lend money. But even if that does work (which is questionable), there is a cost to be paid later. The money that you and I save is what banks loan to businesses to grow the economy tomorrow.
And, if I'm going to be charged for putting money into my savings account (or money market), you can bet that I probably won't do as much of it. Instead of encouraging the savings that will fuel tomorrow's growth, we'll be discouraging it. So the money that businesses need to grow the economy tomorrow won't be there. In effect, we've made tomorrow tougher just to get through today!
What does that mean for you and me? First, I don't want to be seduced into spending instead of saving. Just because our governments aren't smart enough to save for tomorrow doesn't mean that we need to be foolish, too. In a world where few people save, there will be a time when cash will be king. We may also need to consider other places to store our savings besides a savings account. (Could that be why gold is rebounding or why digital currencies such as bitcoin seem to be on the rise again?)
As I’ve said before, repeatedly, economics has become a crapshoot-usually mismanaged by greed and incompetence…no one understands it any longer as government[s] around the globe have screwed things up royally.
In the featured article below, written by blogger Saverio Valenti, you’ll be given excerpted insights gleaned from the book The 50th Law, written by 50 Cent and Robert Greene. 50 Cent, however, is usually in trouble with the law and specifically, with the bankruptcy court for having photos taken of him standing in front of piles of cash [which in itself doesn’t mean anything] but I thought it worth sharing a few of their ideas…
If you haven’t read it, though, it’s a thought-provoking book…
Top 10 Ideas
By Saverio Valenti
1. THE FEARLESS APPROACH
Fear comes from our own misconception of the world. When we feel fear we are self-hypnotized. We believe that something unreal can exist. Fear is just an irrational feeling without connection to reality that prevents people to take action towards their highest potential. How many times what you feared the most has actually happened?
Fear hide itself everywhere, I would go as far as saying that all actions and thoughts of ninety-nine percent of people are fear based, be aware of what you are doing, and most importantly, know the reasons of your actions.
You deliberately put yourself in difficult situations and you examine your reactions. In each case, you will notice that your fears were exaggerated and that confronting them has the bracing effect of bringing you closer to reality. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene 22)
2. INTENSE REALISM
Nothing is inherently good or bad, anyone has the opportunity to interpret events as misfortunes or possibilities. What I have personally experienced is that life will bring to you everything you need at exactly the right moment to overcome you fears. This means that when something happen you have the chance to do a leap on a new level of consciousness, or you could easily refuse to accept what life has brought to you and never overcome that challenge. What you fear will keep representing itself in different forms, as long as you will not make the leap on the other side of fear.
You perceive reality through your beliefs and project it out on the world so you are watching the world through the lens of your thoughts. Do you want to see the world as a welcoming and peaceful place or you want to see it as a dreadful and dangerous place? The choice is up to you, is just a story; do you want to live in a good or a bad story? In the end though be aware that neither of them are real. Life is, and that’s it, nor good nor bad.
The 50th law, however, states that there is one thing we can actually control-the mind-set with which we respond to these events around us. And if we are able to overcome our anxieties and forge a fearless attitude towards life, something strange and remarkable can occur- that margin of control over circumstances increases. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene page 19)
3. TURN SH*T INTO SUGAR
Non-acceptance about the changes of life will never bring something of value, as soon as something unexpected and unwanted happen everybody has the choice to embrace it and do something proactively to turn into a positive event, negative energy and problems are necessary steps for everyone to become better. If you chose to go the opposite direction of the stream of life you will just be carried on anyway, life doesn’t wait for anybody. It would be like swimming on the opposite direction of a waterfall, you can’t win, you can choose to let go and see where you will be led.
Life has a particular pace and rhythm, an endless stream of changes that can move slowly or quickly. When you try to stop this flow mentally or physically by holding on to things or people, you fall behind. Your actions become awkward because they are not in relation to present circumstances. It is like moving against a current as opposed to using it to propel you forward. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene page 100)
4. BE COMPLETELY INDEPENDENT
We have to face the reality that in this world we are completely on our own. Nobody cares if we succeed or fail. When people help us they are usually waiting for something in return. The faster we understand this the faster we can start to work on our self, truly focused on what really matters the most to us, be ready to say no to unhealthy people, situations and influences. Probably one turns from a kid to a man when he truly understands that nobody is going to take care of him forever. If you want something you need to work hard for it, nobody owes you nothing in this life.
He quickly developed the habit of not depending on other people to protect or shelter him. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene page 15)
5. HAVE CLEAR GOALS
If you are not planning your future in detail you are just floating through life without a particular goal. Like an arrow that is not aiming to his target, if you don’t know where you want to go how could you end up there?!
The further and deeper we contemplate the future, the greater our capacity to shape it according to our desires. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene page 42)
6. SUCCESS IS YOUR ONLY OPTION
There is something magic in committing yourself on one single goal, without the slightest doubt about it. Working with certainty on it, you cut all other possibility, even better if you don’t have other possibility, on your mind there is just success, you will give all of yourself to achieve it.
Because he had no plan b, because it was either succeed at music or go under, he operated with a frantic bold energy that got him noticed in the rap world. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene page 16)
7. BE WILLING TO WALK AWAY
If you deeply know that you will be fine with or without certain people, situations and jobs, you will be able to lead the rapport where you want it to be on your terms and conditions. When people sense that you are willing to walk away they will understand that you have other options and this will give you instantly more control and power over them.
In his experience, whenever he felt as if he had too much to lose and he held on to others or to deals out of fear of the alternative, he ended up losing a lot more he realized that the key in life is to be willing to walk away. He was often surprised that in doing so, or even feeling that way, people would come back to him on his terms, now fearing what they might lose in the process. And if they didn’t return, then good riddance. (The 50th Law by 50 Cent and Robert Greene page 271)
8. FOLLOW YOUR PURPOSE
You have just one chance, one opportunity, one life and if you waste it, doing what others people want you to do, you are just squandering your time. You will always be frustrated and unhappy.
If you don’t follow your dreams you will never be realized in life. People will say every kind of things while on your journey, is up to you to understand if it is constructive criticism or just useless gossip, take what is worth considering and be ready to forget instantly all the rest.
[Ed. note: This article originally appeared at Saverio Valenti’s blog right here.]
More Useful Skills to Share…
Lock picking incredibly useful in emergency situations, it’s also just dang fun knowing you can out-maneuver a mechanism which most people just assume is resistant to all but brute force. Rather, with some finesse and know-how, the lock picker can keep his doors in a single piece and save the hassle and cost of calling a locksmith. Read our primer on picking common pin tumbler locks, and start practicing on the front door.
For millennia, a man’s role in his family was to provide. For most of human history this was done through tracking down and killing wild animals. The hunt was a way that many cultures and tribes initiated boys into manhood and provided men with an opportunity to bond and connect in a completely male setting. Fast forward to today. The way most men get their meat is wrapped in a piece of paper that says “Big Mac” or packaged in plastic at the grocery store. And usually the meat is injected with hormones and antibiotics. There’s a huge disconnect between man, his food, and nature.
If you’d like to reconnect with the “Circle of Life,” it’s high time you go on a hunt. The benefits of hunting are innumerable, but here’s just a few: First, it gives you a chance to give you and your family a source of quality, lean meat free from the antibiotics and hormones (and even ammonia!) that lurk in most factory farmed meat. Second, it gives you a chance to get back in touch with nature. Third, you’ll be supporting wildlife conservation, as your dollars spent on hunting licenses and equipment goes to fund state wildlife agencies. And fourth, even if you don’t kill anything, hunting provides an opportunity for male bonding and friendships, which is an important part of your overall happiness. We have a deer hunting primer, as well as getting started with bow hunting. Also check out our article on getting started hunting with dogs.
While “preppers” sometimes get a bad rap in pop culture and mocked in reality TV shows, it can be a fun and useful endeavor for the man who wants to ensure his protection and survival when SHTF (sh*t hits the fan). Prepping not only means acquiring supplies for emergencies (though that’s part of it; see: bug-out bags, bug-in bags, emergency water), but also learning skills (we have a whole section for those) and acquiring new knowledge about survival strategy and methodology (see: the survival library). This can be an expensive hobby, but it certainly doesn’t have to be — especially if you focus on the essentials for supplies, then go about learning the skills (many of which can be practiced in the backyard).
A number of breakthrough techniques exist today for cutting ties with society and living life off the grid (though not all of these methods may be legal).
Step by step, we outline how to generate electricity using simple and advanced methods (includes video). You'll never look at life off the grid quite the same!
Read more at http://www.secretsofsurvival.com/survival-tips/Top-10-Ways-to-Live-Off-the-Grid-Primitive-Electricity.html#yITrM6SZ2e2pMUBW.99
Yours for better living,
Bruce ‘the Poor Man’
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