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Archive for the ‘Current Events/Politics’ Category

 

Voting

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Hey there! I’m a former subscriber who only stopped because I could not afford to renew my subscription, but follow you regularly (several times a week) on my work computer.

I adore Jackie Clay. Some day I’m going to get brave and really pressure can instead of only doing boiling water bath. Hooray Jackie!

But I have to say, I’m going to vote for Ron Paul. If I only write his name in on a ballot, I’m going to vote for him. In spite of the fact that he may eliminate the Social Security that I have contributed to all my working life (since age 18, against my will), and that will leave me darn near penniless unless I can continue to work. I now have nothing else to support me in my “old age”, but that’s okay, and do you know why?  Because the rest of his ideas and ideals MAKE TOTAL SENSE…..

I also am NOT going to “absentee ballot”.  Big scandal in 2008 in my precinct when it was discovered NONE of the absentee ballots had been counted!!!!!!!  And we had presidential and senatorial races going on!  The Clerk said “they didn’t have the people to count” so none of them were counted until weeks after the closing of the races, and of course by that time it didn’t matter squat….. I thought of adding to the stink that was raised…..I was going to volunteer to help count…but didn’t. I am now sorry I didn’t. I might still just do that this year.

Again, I would be a subscriber but I just don’t have the money. I had to drop my health insurance because it more than doubled. I’m paid by the line for my work, production, and it’s basically all I can do to keep my house payments up and certain other bills/expenses paid. I’m not whining, really. At least my company keeps work here in the US instead of sending it “globally”. And I am blessed to be still able to do this worik (I’m a medical transcriptionist).

Back to my original intent – VOTE FOR RON PAUL………I feel he is the ONLY one who can help us, if it’s just not too late.

Kathleen in IL

 

Ron Paul is a disaster for Republicans and Democrats, but not for America’s freedoms

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Dave Duffy’s article, “Ron Paul is a disaster for Republicans and Democrats, but not for America’s freedoms” is posted today, Thursday, January 5th, at whatreallyhappened.com  (gee, I wonder who asked Mike Rivero to post this really good article….)

What Really Happened website has a vast readership (and listenership for his daily radio program on Rense radio) of people all around the globe.  So hopefully this will expand exposure for your truly cool website.

Ron Paul 2012 !!!!

Thanks very much. This is the article I wrote in my blog Dec. 28.

–Dave Duffy

 

Duffy on Ron Paul

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Ron Paul shows up in the coolest, most unexpected places !!

I was standing in the checkout line at my local health-food store and discovered your magazine.  And there on the cover was listed an article about Ron Paul.  Pretty amazing!

Mr. Duffy has written a clear and concise article recapping why we so desperately need Ron Paul as president, one of the better articles on the subject (and I’ve read most of them …. a huge fan since 2008).

Thank you Dave Duffy.  I am going to forward it to Mike Rivero at whatreallyhappened.com in the hopes that he posts it and gives you and your writing the exposure you both deserve.

Thank you again.

T Quigly

RON PAUL 2012 !!!!!

(Now that I’ve discovered you, will be checking out your website as I am interested in ideas about living on the land)

Thanks very much. I’m a solid Ron Paul supporter, but the article you refer to was actually written by the magazine’s long-time senior editor, John Silveira. — Dave

 

Dave’s recent columns and complainers

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

This country has been on the wrong track for well over 2 centuries, yet some Republicans and Democrats remain oblivious to the fact that their political party leaders are responsible for what has happened in recent decades. The letter writers who complain about Dave’s political views going too far should examine their premises. Contrary to the naysayers; I’m of the opinion that Dave, John, and O. E. McDougal don’t go nearly far enough, for they appear to believe that restoring Constitutional government is possible and desirable.

Before some of you dig out your pitch-forks in preparation for attack: Let me inform or remind you that the ratification of the Constitution had its strongest opposition from the most liberty-minded people back then! Patrick Henry of “Give me liberty or give me death” fame, when asked why he refused to attend the constitutional convention, declared:”I smell a rat!” I also recommend the reading of the anti-federalist papers.

My disagreement with this view stems from principles that perhaps they have not yet considered. I am a strong believer in the Non-Aggression Principle, which means that I take a moral and principled stand against force, aggression, and power: nobody, with or without badges or ballots, has the right to agress on any other. We live in a violence based society because we have always had a violence based government.

Had the founding leaders truly believed in freedom for all, then they would have set up a voluntary societies similar to the church congregations that many of them were members of, which raises funds via voluntary donations. Instead, they imposed upon us a coercive government with the power to rob us. Indeed, not long after the ratification of the Constitution, President George Washington led an army to Pennsylvania to rob people that wished to keep their whiskey, which for them was a form of currency. This became known as the Whiskey Rebellion. Alexander Hamilton and his ilk claimed that they needed the revenue to pay off government debts. If it is immoral for a gang down your street to rob a store for the purpose of acquiring enough money to bail out a jailed friend, then it was also immoral for a group of people that call themselves “the government” to rob people for the purpose of repaying investors. The citizens didn’t consent to the loan, and saddling them with the debt ex-post facto was also wrong. The debt could have been paid for by the sale of land, or the debt could have been defaulted on.

There is no question that the people who attended the constitutional convention were highly educated and very intelligent. How is it then that such sharp lawyers, judges, and politicians would include language into the constitution that imposes a death penalty for treason, yet imposes only slaps on the wrists of the ruling class for violating “the supreme law of the land?” This cannot possibly be a mere accident! Indeed, President John Adams and the Federalist congressmen passed the Sedition Act, which was clearly unconstitutional, during the founding generation; yet they were not even impeached, let alone imprisoned or executed. Therefore: we should not cast blame at our fellow tax slaves for failing to remove today’s tyrants from office since our forefathers could do no better with a much smaller government that lacked today’s weaponry. Isn’t it amazing that the very minarchist document which was supposedly intended to limit government led to the most powerful government in world history in so little time?

Improving the Constitution would be of no use because we would have to babysit the government 24/7 in order to make it behave; so why replace it once the government collapses? There has never been a moral government in this world, nor will there ever be one! The very second that a government becomes established; there becomes 2 classes of people: the ruler(s) and the ruled. The belief that government is needed because mankind is evil is erroneous thinking. “If men are good, you don’t need government; if men are evil or ambivalent, you don’t dare have one.”-Robert LeFevre

Positions of power attract busybodies and evil people, and power corrupts even otherwise good men. No man should have power over another in a moral and free society!

Genuine free-market solutions to problems is the moral way of solving problems and filling wants. Natural Law is easy to understand and is explained at the Lysander Spooner website link below.

So, what should lovers of liberty do? Free yourselves! Freedom is mostly a state of mind! Most decisions made by people every day are anarchic in nature despite the state’s existence. I used to be a statist conservative republican, but my thirst for knowledge drove me and drives me toward self-improvement and gradually toward wisdom. I can state from personal experience that the truth will set you free!

Here are some free educational resources for your consumption:

http://tiny.cc/4h01z

http://www.lewrockwell.com/

http://www.freedomainradio.com/

http://www.lysanderspooner.org/

and most certainly BWH’s very own columnist Claire Wolfe:

http://www.backwoodshome.com/blogs/ClaireWolfe/

Please folks; educate as many people as you can. If this government were to collapse today, the masses would foolishly promote an election to choose representatives to form a reincarnated state to replace the one that just failed.

Brian Mast
Abolitionist from Stover, Missouri

 

Defunding government

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

Sir,

I will start with the statement that I have read your magazine since its inception many years ago. Our lives have been tested in similar manners, divorce, child rearing, attempting to start over again ect. This is why I find it shocking that you advocate the throw the baby out with the bathwater solution so many have… I expected better..or at least  a fair chance, you see Dave, I AM ONE OF THEM a good for nothing fat cat rich public employee.

I would love to make 30+ dollars an hour and all those FREE MONEY BENEFITS I would sure like some body to show them to me.

I did get a raise this year Dave, a whole .25 cents an hour  didn’t get a raise the last 3 years though.

My” golden parachute “retirement from the state I work for after 30 years of loyal service will be about 785 a month.And that is it, if our Governor doesn’t decide to give it to the teachers union, which means you guessed it… screwed again.

Yes… the joys of working for “the people”. I guess I could be bitter about it, but hey with all the millions in free benefits who could complain?

What do I do you ask?  I am a nurses aide on a Maximum Security Ward of a Mental Institution. And we all know how well DEFUNDING mental health has been working on that problem don’t we Dave?

My whole point is there are services that are necessary if not popular and the people who step up to do these jobs don’t really need to be demonized by an editorial that may be true in Oregon is not necessarily true every where else.

A one size fits all approach is one that rarely fits any. And while I have enjoyed your publication for many years and do agree with you on most things I have to draw a line Dave….. Sorry you have been defunded.

Yours,

Bruce E. Blankenship

 

Getting the State Out of Marriage

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

I liked your article. I would only add that marriage confers many rights to couples, which is why the “gay marriage” and “poly marriage” debate matters. There are state and Federal estate laws, laws about who can make decisions for someone who is incapacitated, laws governing retirement plans, etc. that grant special privileges to married couples. The state does have an interest in these matters, as you mentioned, in the role of arbiter. Poly marriage presents unique problems in that several spouses of the deceased/incapacitated would make the arbiter’s role more difficult, especially if they didn’t agree unanimously on a course of action. That does not mean that the government has the right to decide who can and cannot marry, just that they have an interest in the union.

Regards,

Jeff Yamada

 

Smart guy

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

John,

Just read your editorial Getting the state out of marriage and you are dead on.  In fact this is something I have been known to pontificate myself.  So there are at least two smart guys left in this country.

I think marriage actually started as a legal thing, not religious.  It was more about keeping track of who owned  what land and such.  I believe it became associated with the church because those were the guys who could read and keep records.  But then, as things go now, something that gets started as a practical matter gets blown out of proportion and taken over.  So, yes, for a long time it has been in the realm of religion.

Thanks,

Howard Peer

 

My view article

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Mr. Duffy,

I enjoy your magazine. I didn’t enjoy your article about legalizing drugs.

I am a police officer and used to work in a local jail. You made it sound like “cops” kick in doors and personally line their pockets.

First let me say that to have legalized alcoholic beverages and not marijuana is absolute hypocrisy. At least in my experience the negative impact of liquor on society is far more devastating than pot. Most of my calls for service involve booze.

Second, I do agree that constitutionally, a person has a right to put what every they want in their body. The problem comes when I start picking up the tab for their self destruction.

If we had a society that was pragmatic enough to leave OD victims to die, problem solved, but instead Medics are called to the same address, week after week, taking these self destructive folks to the hospital at a huge financial toll.

While you were in jail did you ask any of those innocent 19 and 20 year olds, that were there with you if they were on disability for their drug dependence. I have, when I worked in jail, more than could be numbered! 20 and disabled, drawing social security. Who is picking up the tab for that? Society is going to pay for it one way or another.

By the way, here in Ohio, possession of small amounts, and I mean an ounce (a lot) is a ticket, you can’t go to jail for that. No one is in jail for having a joint in their pocket. Since 1990,I have been involved in maybe 3 seizure cases! All were big time dealers. Meth and crack and heroin are all very destructive. If no one has to pick up the tab, let em have it, but we will end up with the tab, and raising their illegitimate kids too.

Again, I love the magazine.

Regards,

Garry Lawson

 

The Just Say No Article

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Oh, thank you for saying exactly what is in my mind. All I can add is that I hope you reach many, many more people.

I asked a neighbor once,”How many laws are enough? When do the elected ones finally throw up their hands and declare the job done? How heavy a burden of legislation must we carry in our lives ’til they’re satisfied that we’re protected from our own follies sufficiently?” The neighbor had no answer.

Thank you for speaking out, I applaud you Oliver.

Christina
Blackpool, BC
Canada

 

A guide to buying silver and gold

Sunday, December 12th, 2010

I’m writing in response to Mr. Buckley’s excellent article. Id like to add some observations to that excellent overview.

The thoughts below are solely my opinion and are not intended proselytize anyone; I am including them to provide my rationale for the silver acquisition strategy I am about to share below.

I am not a precious metals dealer, nor do I have any commercial interest in what I have to say. I just have a belief that regardless of political orientation, with a very few notable exceptions, the same gang of myopic, quarreling, self focused, gladiator-politicians, who have for decades been catering to a moneyed aristocracy for whom “More!” is never enough, will probably continue in power. That’s a scary enough scenario. However, if plague-flu, nuclear terrorists, computer saboteurs, unchecked global heating, climate wierding, nuclear states acting out historical grudges (Iran, Israel, India, Pakistan, North Korea. Etc.), or a nuclear terrorist attack on Washington or New York don’t bring on Dylan’s “It’s A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall”, the Wall Street locusts will. The world economy dropped to its knees in a few short weeks after years of wink-and-a-nod regulation (bad, bad, word) fostered staggering greed that eventually compromised our financial and national security, with the only remedy being either mortgage the farm to buy more slop for the Hogs or let the farm go to hell.

Any one of these scenarios would almost immediately dry up the oil supply (how much bread and milk would be on the shelves after a few diesel-less weeks for oil tankers, trucks, container ships, power plants, etc.; who would go to work in the teeth of a virulent lethal flu? And just how long before desperate people would start “foraging”, that is, taking whatever they need from whoever has it? In the long term, considering that only Congress has legislative authority to reduce the obscenely massive national deficit is worrying enough, but should they actually do anything, that burden is sure to fall on ordinary citizens, and not the creators and beneficiaries of this catastrophe, who have been, are now, and will continue to finance campaigns of “friendly” politicians. As Deep Throat once said to Carl Bernstein: “Follow the money”. I say, “It is time to get smart”.

I grew up assuming that other people had organized the world for my benefit, and that all I needed to do was work hard, obey the law and pay my taxes to earn money for my wants and needs. That was called the American Way of Life; and it was all based on earning and spending enough to keep the economy growing. It seems that most politicians think that only by borrowing money to spend or reducing national income (tax cuts) or stripping government services will keep the economy growing. That’s like saying the best way to avoid foreclosure is to take out a loan, get a lower-paying job, or start selling off your inheritance. The horrifying truth is the Chinese, Saudis, and Japanese hold the mortgage, and the family is in crisis and tearing itself apart. No politician will do anything that could endanger re- election. That is where things are now, and the sickening truth is the medicine we need is gone – to Wall Street hedge funds, banks, corporate growth and profit machine and stockholders, and especially to the wealth aristocrats with super-size medicine cabinets brimming with (w)health, while the patient’s monitor red-lines and the doctor sits watching ESPN and picking his nose. In response, I have been relying on an old and fundamental American value; self-reliance. Among many other things, part of my strategy is acquiring the things of value I can use to secure things like food, fuel and shelter and safety.

David Weschler, the premier constructor of intelligence tests (Weschler Scales of Intelligence) once defined “intelligence” as not some mysterious “mental energy” intelligence tests measure (including his own), or even one’s ability to benefit from instruction (although that comes closer), but (to paraphrase) “the ability to organize the world to your benefit”. Sooo – I think it’s Time To Get Smart.

I have a suggestion for people who wish to acquire precious metals as a precaution against paper money’s predictable loss of value during “Hard Times”: Buy silver. Unlike other precious metals, silver has a wide range of important industrial uses that sustain demand and smooth out the volatility of the precious metal commodity exchanges. If you do choose to buy silver bullion, don’t “nickel and dime” unless you must. It is better to buy silver in 100 to 1000 oz. bars because the greater the quantity, the less of a dealer’s premium you pay. It is best to buy local and pick it up yourself. You should meet the person you are buying from in his office. If the office looks like a shabby dump, well, caveat emptor. Furthermore, unlike gold, silver can be a medium of daily person-to-person exchange during hard times. Try buying a carton of milk with a Krugerrand. You could bite it into bits with your teeth and weigh them – or just give the person a silver dime.

Three years ago in October when the Deregulation buzzards came home to roost, and after I realized the government had let the aristocracy of the never-rich-enough suck up national security. I bought two $1000 bags of U.S. pre 1964 silver coins. My first point is if you perceive the need, DON’T WAIT. If things go to Hell, it won’t matter if you paid $5.00 or $50.00 per ounce. No matter how much “profit” you made, the only difference will be how much paper you’re holding in your hand to wipe your buttocks when paper towels would do just as well. I bought U.S. pre- 1964 90% silver coins when the spot price was $10.50. Today’s spot is $29.43. If you are acquiring and not selling, this paper difference is of no consequence. If you need help convincing a cautious partner, spouse, etc., there are graphs of the change in the price of silver at MJPM.com: daily, monthly, and yearly from 1792 to present. The price trends for the last two decades are sobering. If I’d listened to advice back then (anxious spouse), I’d still be waiting for the price to drop.

As far as the forms of silver, I suggest not buying the Treasury “American Silver Eagle” dollar coins. First of all, they are so stunningly beautiful and limited in issue, they have numismatic (coin-collecting) value (i.e., they appreciate over time), and collectors pay a premium over their 1 oz. bullion (spot) value. If you want bulk silver for barter, many silver producers issue 1 oz. (or more) .999 pure silver “coins” called “rounds” which come in “half”, “quarter”, and “tenth” ounce sizes. I’d only buy silver rounds that feature the most beautiful of old Treasury issues, such as the “Walking Liberty”, “Standing Liberty”, “Morgan Dollar”, “Saint Gaudens”, “Incuse Indian”, or my favorite, the James Earl Fraser “Indian Head” or “Buffalo” design used on the 1913 – 1938 nickels (for example, see at Golden Gate Mint website). Since these silver “rounds” are not U.S. coins; their value” isn’t backed by the “full faith and credit” of the U.S. government, which is often given as a reason to buy Silver Eagles. But considering that the face value of a Silver Eagle is one dollar, if things do go to hell, the government will only give you a dollar for it, and that will probably will be in some form of paper. Duh. Again, if things do go “south of the border” (chasing NAFTA?), the value of an ounce coin will be way beyond present day spot. Again, think about trying to buy a carton of milk with a 1 oz. Silver Eagle perhaps worth the equivalent of $100 – if not more.

In barter situations, people may question the authenticity of what you have to give; in addition, you will need a form of silver that can be used for everyday small purchases. People will be most comfortable with actual out-of-circulation U.S. silver coins. Again, even these in dime form, in a “gone-to hell” situation, could be worth considerably more than a loaf of bread.

There is a strategy I have used that has allowed me to acquire pre-1964 90% U.S silver coins for less than their commercial spot value. Interested? Although it is time-consuming, it is not difficult, nor does it require knowledge or skills beyond the ability of a reasonably intelligent adult. Although time-intensive, I found it to be satisfying and enjoyable.

I bought a $1000 face value bag each of pre-1964 silver dimes and quarters. Many buyers of bulk coins ask for bags of half dollars or dollars. This is a mistake for the reason outlined above. Instead of just packing the coins away, I sorted them into the various US Treasury issues, or face designs, if you will. A word about U.S. silver coins. When they were pulled from circulation after 1964, most ended up in Treasury vaults. It appears that the larger denominations have been culled of earlier Treasury releases – I would imagine based on their numismatic value. So, for example, only about ten of the $1000 of bag of quarters predated the Washington 1932-1964 issue, and these were so worn they were worthless to any collector. Again, there were practically none of the more valuable coins of the early 1930′s. This was not so for the dimes, which were represented (roughly) as follows (in descending order of issue):

About 60% “Roosevelt” dimes (1946 – 1964) About 37% “Winged Liberty Head” or “Mercury”dimes (1916 – 1946) About 2,5%, “Barber” or “Liberty Head” dimes (1892 – 1916) About 0.5% “Liberty Seated” dimes (1837 – 1891).

Unlike the quarters, the earlier coins of these releases, as well as the scarcer mintmarks (more below) were proportionally well-represented. I cannot guarantee that any particular bag of dimes would have the same proportions of these various issues, but I think there is reason to believe so. First, anyone who has sorted through a $1000 bag (10,000) dimes would not find it implausible that someone has taken the time to sort them. Second, I was careful to choose a reputable seller of precious metals who could identify their origin, in this case, a bank vault. I would suggest that anyone wanting to use my strategy identify the source of their purchase. Under no circumstances are coins to be purchased from a coin dealer. And if you do find a valuable coin, you have some certainty it is not conterfeit. China has been flooding the U.S. precious coin market with – well, Chinese crap.

After sorting out the low-value Roosevelt dimes, which I have reserved for future bartering, I sorted the Mercury and Barber dimes by their U.S. mint marks. These marks indicate their origin and can also be used to identify the numbers produced by each mint, which along with condition (wear)determines their numismatic value. Typically scarce for “Mercury” dimes are the “S” (San Francisco) mintmark, and, to a lesser extent, the “D” or Denver mintmark. The earlier the date, the higher the numismatic value. For the “Barber” dimes, the “O” or New Orleans mintmark and “S” or San Francisco mintmark are usually scarcest, as are the Philadelphia and Denver 1916 and 1921 issues. 1920, 1921. I hit JACKPOT on several coins: an 1896-O and 1905 “micro ‘O’” in “Very Good” condition ($160, $25); two 1921′s and one 1921 “D” in “Good” condition ($65, $65, $80), and two 1926-S in “Very Good” condition ($15, $15). I was also able to make several 50 coin roll of the scarcer earliest-dated coins which I also sold for a good profit.

The bottom line is that I sold the Mercury and Barber dimes for about and $800 profit, thus discounting what I paid for the dimes ($10,500) about 7.5%. My only caveat is that this strategy is time-consuming: Not only must you sort through 10,000 dimes by issue and mintmark, you must grade their condition before you can identify their value. There are various on-line sources for this. There is no guarantee this strategy will work for others; for example, you might not receive an unsorted bag of coins. However, if this is so, if your mission is to acquire coins for barter, there is no loss other than a lost opportunity to make a profit.

[Name withheld by request]

A guide to buying silver and gold By Thomas M. Buckley

I’m writing in response to Mr. Buckley’s excellent article. Id like to add some observations to that excellent overview.

The thoughts below are solely my opinion and are not intended proselytize anyone; I am including them to provide my rationale for the silver acquisition strategy I am about to share below.

I am not a precious metals dealer, nor do I have any commercial interest in what I have to say. I just have a belief that regardless of political orientation, with a very few notable exceptions, the same gang of myopic, quarreling, self focused, gladiator-politicians, who have for decades been catering to a moneyed aristocracy for whom “More!” is never enough, will probably continue in power. That’s a scary enough scenario. However, if plague-flu, nuclear terrorists, computer saboteurs, unchecked global heating, climate wierding, nuclear states acting out historical grudges (Iran, Israel, India, Pakistan, North Korea. Etc.), or a nuclear terrorist attack on Washington or New York don’t bring on Dylan’s “It’s A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall”, the Wall Street locusts will. The world economy dropped to its knees in a few short weeks after years of wink-and-a-nod regulation (bad, bad, word) fostered staggering greed that eventually compromised our financial and national security, with the only remedy being either mortgage the farm to buy more slop for the Hogs or let the farm go to hell.

Any one of these scenarios would almost immediately dry up the oil supply (how much bread and milk would be on the shelves after a few diesel-less weeks for oil tankers, trucks, container ships, power plants, etc.; who would go to work in the teeth of a virulent lethal flu? And just how long before desperate people would start “foraging”, that is, taking whatever they need from whoever has it? In the long term, considering that only Congress has legislative authority to reduce the obscenely massive national deficit is worrying enough, but should they actually do anything, that burden is sure to fall on ordinary citizens, and not the creators and beneficiaries of this catastrophe, who have been, are now, and will continue to finance campaigns of “friendly” politicians. As Deep Throat once said to Carl Bernstein: “Follow the money”. I say, “It is time to get smart”.

I grew up assuming that other people had organized the world for my benefit, and that all I needed to do was work hard, obey the law and pay my taxes to earn money for my wants and needs. That was called the American Way of Life; and it was all based on earning and spending enough to keep the economy growing. It seems that most politicians think that only by borrowing money to spend or reducing national income (tax cuts) or stripping government services will keep the economy growing. That’s like saying the best way to avoid foreclosure is to take out a loan, get a lower-paying job, or start selling off your inheritance. The horrifying truth is the Chinese, Saudis, and Japanese hold the mortgage, and the family is in crisis and tearing itself apart. No politician will do anything that could endanger re- election. That is where things are now, and the sickening truth is the medicine we need is gone – to Wall Street hedge funds, banks, corporate growth and profit machine and stockholders, and especially to the wealth aristocrats with super-size medicine cabinets brimming with (w)health, while the patient’s monitor red-lines and the doctor sits watching ESPN and picking his nose. In response, I have been relying on an old and fundamental American value; self-reliance. Among many other things, part of my strategy is acquiring the things of value I can use to secure things like food, fuel and shelter and safety.

David Weschler, the premier constructor of intelligence tests (Weschler Scales of Intelligence) once defined “intelligence” as not some mysterious “mental energy” intelligence tests measure (including his own), or even one’s ability to benefit from instruction (although that comes closer), but (to paraphrase) “the ability to organize the world to your benefit”. Sooo – I think it’s Time To Get Smart.

I have a suggestion for people who wish to acquire precious metals as a precaution against paper money’s predictable loss of value during “Hard Times”: Buy silver. Unlike other precious metals, silver has a wide range of important industrial uses that sustain demand and smooth out the volatility of the precious metal commodity exchanges. If you do choose to buy silver bullion, don’t “nickel and dime” unless you must. It is better to buy silver in 100 to 1000 oz. bars because the greater the quantity, the less of a dealer’s premium you pay. It is best to buy local and pick it up yourself. You should meet the person you are buying from in his office. If the office looks like a shabby dump, well, caveat emptor. Furthermore, unlike gold, silver can be a medium of daily person-to-person exchange during hard times. Try buying a carton of milk with a Krugerrand. You could bite it into bits with your teeth and weigh them – or just give the person a silver dime.

Three years ago in October when the Deregulation buzzards came home to roost, and after I realized the government had let the aristocracy of the never-rich-enough suck up national security. I bought two $1000 bags of U.S. pre 1964 silver coins. My first point is if you perceive the need, DON’T WAIT. If things go to Hell, it won’t matter if you paid $5.00 or $50.00 per ounce. No matter how much “profit” you made, the only difference will be how much paper you’re holding in your hand to wipe your buttocks when paper towels would do just as well. I bought U.S. pre- 1964 90% silver coins when the spot price was $10.50. Today’s spot is $29.43. If you are acquiring and not selling, this paper difference is of no consequence. If you need help convincing a cautious partner, spouse, etc., there are graphs of the change in the price of silver at MJPM.com: daily, monthly, and yearly from 1792 to present. The price trends for the last two decades are sobering. If I’d listened to advice back then (anxious spouse), I’d still be waiting for the price to drop.

As far as the forms of silver, I suggest not buying the Treasury “American Silver Eagle” dollar coins. First of all, they are so stunningly beautiful and limited in issue, they have numismatic (coin-collecting) value (i.e., they appreciate over time), and collectors pay a premium over their 1 oz. bullion (spot) value. If you want bulk silver for barter, many silver producers issue 1 oz. (or more) .999 pure silver “coins” called “rounds” which come in “half”, “quarter”, and “tenth” ounce sizes. I’d only buy silver rounds that feature the most beautiful of old Treasury issues, such as the “Walking Liberty”, “Standing Liberty”, “Morgan Dollar”, “Saint Gaudens”, “Incuse Indian”, or my favorite, the James Earl Fraser “Indian Head” or “Buffalo” design used on the 1913 – 1938 nickels (for example, see at Golden Gate Mint website). Since these silver “rounds” are not U.S. coins; their value” isn’t backed by the “full faith and credit” of the U.S. government, which is often given as a reason to buy Silver Eagles. But considering that the face value of a Silver Eagle is one dollar, if things do go to hell, the government will only give you a dollar for it, and that will probably will be in some form of paper. Duh. Again, if things do go “south of the border” (chasing NAFTA?), the value of an ounce coin will be way beyond present day spot. Again, think about trying to buy a carton of milk with a 1 oz. Silver Eagle perhaps worth the equivalent of $100 – if not more.

In barter situations, people may question the authenticity of what you have to give; in addition, you will need a form of silver that can be used for everyday small purchases. People will be most comfortable with actual out-of-circulation U.S. silver coins. Again, even these in dime form, in a “gone-to hell” situation, could be worth considerably more than a loaf of bread.

There is a strategy I have used that has allowed me to acquire pre-1964 90% U.S silver coins for less than their commercial spot value. Interested? Although it is time-consuming, it is not difficult, nor does it require knowledge or skills beyond the ability of a reasonably intelligent adult. Although time-intensive, I found it to be satisfying and enjoyable.

I bought a $1000 face value bag each of pre-1964 silver dimes and quarters. Many buyers of bulk coins ask for bags of half dollars or dollars. This is a mistake for the reason outlined above. Instead of just packing the coins away, I sorted them into the various US Treasury issues, or face designs, if you will. A word about U.S. silver coins. When they were pulled from circulation after 1964, most ended up in Treasury vaults. It appears that the larger denominations have been culled of earlier Treasury releases – I would imagine based on their numismatic value. So, for example, only about ten of the $1000 of bag of quarters predated the Washington 1932-1964 issue, and these were so worn they were worthless to any collector. Again, there were practically none of the more valuable coins of the early 1930′s. This was not so for the dimes, which were represented (roughly) as follows (in descending order of issue):

About 60% “Roosevelt” dimes (1946 – 1964) About 37% “Winged Liberty Head” or “Mercury”dimes (1916 – 1946) About 2,5%, “Barber” or “Liberty Head” dimes (1892 – 1916) About 0.5% “Liberty Seated” dimes (1837 – 1891).

Unlike the quarters, the earlier coins of these releases, as well as the scarcer mintmarks (more below) were proportionally well-represented. I cannot guarantee that any particular bag of dimes would have the same proportions of these various issues, but I think there is reason to believe so. First, anyone who has sorted through a $1000 bag (10,000) dimes would not find it implausible that someone has taken the time to sort them. Second, I was careful to choose a reputable seller of precious metals who could identify their origin, in this case, a bank vault. I would suggest that anyone wanting to use my strategy identify the source of their purchase. Under no circumstances are coins to be purchased from a coin dealer. And if you do find a valuable coin, you have some certainty it is not conterfeit. China has been flooding the U.S. precious coin market with – well, Chinese crap.

After sorting out the low-value Roosevelt dimes, which I have reserved for future bartering, I sorted the Mercury and Barber dimes by their U.S. mint marks. These marks indicate their origin and can also be used to identify the numbers produced by each mint, which along with condition (wear)determines their numismatic value. Typically scarce for “Mercury” dimes are the “S” (San Francisco) mintmark, and, to a lesser extent, the “D” or Denver mintmark. The earlier the date, the higher the numismatic value. For the “Barber” dimes, the “O” or New Orleans mintmark and “S” or San Francisco mintmark are usually scarcest, as are the Philadelphia and Denver 1916 and 1921 issues. 1920, 1921. I hit JACKPOT on several coins: an 1896-O and 1905 “micro ‘O’” in “Very Good” condition ($160, $25); two 1921′s and one 1921 “D” in “Good” condition ($65, $65, $80), and two 1926-S in “Very Good” condition ($15, $15). I was also able to make several 50 coin roll of the scarcer earliest-dated coins which I also sold for a good profit.

The bottom line is that I sold the Mercury and Barber dimes for about and $800 profit, thus discounting what I paid for the dimes ($10,500) about 7.5%. My only caveat is that this strategy is time-consuming: Not only must you sort through 10,000 dimes by issue and mintmark, you must grade their condition before you can identify their value. There are various on-line sources for this. There is no guarantee this strategy will work for others; for example, you might not receive an unsorted bag of coins. However, if this is so, if your mission is to acquire coins for barter, there is no loss other than a lost opportunity to make a profit.

 

Most Free Nations

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

Most Free Nations

Hi, John.

You state “What, on paper, would appear to be the freest society in the world appears, in practice, to be among the most oppressive. Does this bother anyone besides me?”

I would like to agree with you. It bothers me for two reasons.  And not the reasons you might think.  You see I’m not American though I have been visiting the USA for 20 years or so for vacation and business so have the perspective of an outsider.

The two reasons are that (i) the people in the US seem to be oblivious to the inexorable legalistic technocracy that the nation is becoming and (ii) since US culture is globally influential through media and multi-national businesses there is a creeping legalism in countries where common sense normally prevails.

Over the years when I have left the US to head home to the UK, I have felt that I was leaving a police state for the land of the free…a slight exaggeration to make the point, but not far off.  I have felt that common sense is disappearing from the US social life and being replaced by laws,  To take 2 very simple examples which should be considered just as examples of a wider point not as important cases in themselves…In the UK there are no laws against jaywalking (except on Freeways) …you will not be booked for crossing a road when the man is on red.  The lights are to advise adults when it is safe to cross rather than treating people as children to be caught for being naughty.  You will not be booked for failing to give your seat at the front of the bus to an elderly or pregnant person, but will culturally know that it is something you should do.  And signs will encourage everyone to give their seats to people not able to stand rather than indicating a fine if you don’t.  There is no need for laws to punish offenders because children are taught acceptable behaviour from a young age.

I try to understand why the US needs to regulate the social world through so many laws.  I can only conclude that it is because (i) there is no universal cultural model that acts as a common sense norm set of behaviours (ii) it is a fundamentally legalistic rather than common-sense based country…adversarial rather than collaborative.

Nevertheless the impression I have when visiting the US is that (i) really, it is the least free country I regularly visit (I now work in Australia and spend a lot of time in Asia and Europe too) (ii) people are told/brainwashed that the US is the land of the free (iii) things are getting worse.  The most insidious part is point (ii).  It is an example of American Exceptionalism.  Which is to say that since the US is the biggest economy in the world there is a natural extension to “the US is the best in the world….at everything”.  Though the US certainly is the best at some things, I would argue that most of these are in the economic sphere rather than in the social and that the US is walking zombie-like down a de-humanising path of over-regulated social and cultural life.  I hope the US wakes up to this because of the influence it has outside of its shores.

Yours

Konker

 

California’s marijuana initiative

Monday, June 28th, 2010

Dear Sir,

I appreciate your opinion in general regarding the legalization issue. Unfortunately I must disagree with you on the positive spin you have given the upcoming “The Regulate, Control, and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010″.

Reading the specifics of the legislation I’m sure you would agree that this is a far cry from a freedom-based initiative. You made some very sound arguments in the article but did not address some of my main concerns. Specifically the regulation aspect limits the amount that can be grown and possessed, which begs the question of just how the authorities would monitor the plants grown on an individual’s private property; will the authorities be inspecting homes? I cannot in good conscience support this initiative because it doesn’t decriminalize marijuana, it simply changes the terms of what is considered criminal activity according to the law. Furthermore, collecting taxes on something that is grown and consumed privately seems quite impossible to me.

The skeptic in me also is extremely leery of any “step” the government takes in any direction. More often than not, legislation is bastardized through endless amendments and adjustments as time goes on. Rarely do these actions result in less intrusion on individual rights.

Best Regards,

Kevin

 

Second Revolution

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Dear Editor,

As an online reader that missed being a “Baby Boomer” by one year or so, and not quite young enough to be of this so called “younger generation” I was awestruck by one comment in Mr. Duffy’s article.

“One thing I feel pretty confident in predicting: America’s Second Revolution is coming, and the young will bring it.”

America has lost her way. One can only hope that these young people can right her course and guide her through the rocks and shoals of this treacherous bay. As someone that has sworn an oath “to support and defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic” I can only hope and pray that it comes by the ballot box instead of the rifle barrel.

Time will tell. I will not say I look forward to the future, as that would be a lie. I will however say that these are indeed interesting times.

BikerRN

 

Assessment of America

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Mishin makes some excellent points. Far too many Americans remain blind or indifferent to the alarming erosion of freedoms taking place as well as the lurking threat posed by what has essentially become unlimited government.

The phenomenon may be due to public school indoctrination combined with the fact that half of all Americans  now recieve a substantial portion of their income from government. The two are undoubtedly related. Twenty million Americans now receive Earned Income Tax Credit, a form of welfare. Ten percent of the population receives food stamps. Far more depend on Social Security. The list goes on and on.

Although not all  people become fatally compromised when their subsidies start arriving, it would probably be safe to assume that most do.

Unfortunately, the only thing will put an end to it is an economic meltdown. With the official national debt shooting up the hockey stick handle like an Atlas rocket, such an event looks more and more likely with each passing day.

Marc Swanson

 

Awesome article

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

The article about Russia seeing how America really is, from afar, is entirely correct!

It is very sad to see our great country in the ruins that it is in now, and from what I have seen from other people; there is no way to fix it.  People don’t care; they truly are sheeple.

Finding like-minded people to associate with is rare and you have to be careful that you are not being watched, although I know we all are.  There will be a day when we will no longer be welcome to state our opinions and will be thrown into prison or exterminated because of what we think or believe.  I do believe it is not far away.  Especially under the ruling of the “czars!”

Thank you,

Sue S.

 

A quick Tour of Hyperinflation

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Great article. My husband, Bob, and I saw this coming back in 1974 and have been spreading the word since then, to small avail.

One point not made was that the government has mortgaged away our country to other countries like China. When the whole ball of wax starts to melt, those mortgages are going to be called in and we, who were born and raised here in the USA, will find ourselves tenants on land that is no longer American owned. Actually, we are tenants already; most people just don’t know that… yet.

Also, remember the Federal Reserve isn’t federal at all. A wise banker once said, “Allow me to control the money and I don’t care who runs the country.”

Obviously, there is no simple fix. No, we cannot predict the future, but by looking to the history of once great nations, we can see the natural results of hyperinflation. Thank you for sharing in such a wise and concise manner.

Lizzie Hough

 

The coming American Dictatorship

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

Very good exposition. I’d like to add that there is an ongoing effort to educate Americans of their perfect right to judge the law and the facts in every trial by jury.

I’m proud to say that I got the Jury Rights plank into the Libertarian Party platform at LP10, Denver, 1981, from the floor in open convention. I was a lot younger, and hot from reading Lysander Spooner’s “Trial By Jury.”

In 1987 Larry Dodge and Don Doig, then of Montana, were reading the 1982 LP platform and decided to take it out of one Party’s province and make it a public issue.

So they founded the Fully Informed Jury Association (FIJA) which is still active.

I hope you choose to mention FIJA to your readers. FIJA also offers some tips on surviving voir dire with one’s principles intact.

Regards,

Jim Lorenz

 

The destruction of the mass print media

Sunday, October 25th, 2009

I am so happy that someone else recognizes the threat that the lying, liberal, elitist, sewage of the mainstream media presents to moral, patriotic, Christian, mainstream America.

The arrogant, condescending, out of touch, elitists have been taught since their first day in ‘journalism’ school that only they have the means to disseminate and interpret the ‘facts’ in a manner that the unwashed masses can understand.

The filth of the media hide behind their First Amendment rights to print and utter their lies, innuendo, and distortion of the facts to suit their agenda, which just happens to be the same as that of their whoremasters/paymasters in the Democratic party.

They have NO use for the individual RIGHT to freedom of speech, just as they have NO use for the other Constitutionally guaranteed RIGHTS of the First amendment.  The sewage of the media MUST be held accountable for each and every word they print, or utter, every punctuation mark, their snide comments and facial expressions that they use when commenting on American patriots, and most of all their use of anonymous sources must be curtailed.

The ‘reporters’ and ‘journalists’ and their anti-American, anti-military, and anti-conservative ‘reporting’ tell us all we need to know where their loyalties lie, and the fact that they are now PAID to unquestioningly spread the agenda of the Communist Party, United States of Socialist AmeriKa, tells me that they must be held accountable for their lies and treason.

Regards,

Art Horn

 

Preparing for civil unrest article

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

I’m sorta speechless Claire, these are things I have been seeing slowly taking shape over the last few years and I have to agree with you one hundred percent.

Suffice it to say, I intend to survive THAT problem if it arises…I have NO intention of going and looking for trouble, I abhor violence, however, if trouble comes here, to my doorstep, my family and I will survive.  I did NOT spend twenty plus years as a combat instructor in the Marine Corps for nothing.

I hope and pray that we never see it happen, and I mean that with all sincerity, but with the same sincerity, there will be hell to pay if unrest comes out our road.  We live fairly isolated, by mutual choice in East Tennessee, so that helps, and we grow our own food crops and our own meat, and that helps, so I’m HOPING we’re fairly well prepared if the excrement impacts the air flow moving device…

Have a GREAT Day!

John Campbell

 

The coming American dictatorship

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

Dear Editor(s)

After listening to a local radio morning show discussion involving the indoctrination of public school children by our latest president I was left feeling drained and disillusioned with the state of our nation. For many years I’ve known something was wrong in America. I was raised as many of us were. Watching the glorious feats of the one off free nation that never was before and always would be.

I was positive of the greatness of a nation. As I have grown older, learned, read, thought and seen; There is something wrong with our system. I grew up extremely poor, impoverished even. Many nights we went without food, in these United States. Even so, I had faith in the natural rights granted to Americans. Slowly though, it waned as the youthful imaginings were jolted by the brutal realities of our situation.

Needless to say, it is an illusion. So many times in my life I have been presented the opportunity to “Do the right thing,” And, have. I have been honest johnny, I have been even Stephen. I have worked and paid and fought to be a good person. Literally from the depths of homelessness, I have rebuilt my life. I have worked any honest job a man can work and I have not tasted that forbidden fruit. Yet, I am at best lower-middle class. I manage paycheck to paycheck and work like that simpleton on a treadmill chasing the pot of gold that never comes.

Now, beyond those physical labor and minimum wage pains, I am still in the cogs of a giant machine turning with absolute [intent] to enslave. I am angry and irrational, often blaming politicians and the idiocy of my fellow citizens. Sure, I’ve learned to play within the rules. I’ve managed to color within the lines and “Yes’sa,” “No’sa” through a corporate society. For a kid who grew up in Los Angeles dirt poor and never finished High School, I am through pain and persistence struggling upward.

But, it still lingers, that knowing, that understanding of the absolute obscured nature of my goals. The distaste of the sweet fruit of life in the eyes of the greater picture. When I see a man on television proclaiming he will be different, crested by his brilliant star spangled button, I taste that concoction of poison drenched in sugar. And still, I blame politicians, shadow masters with unlimited power, time, influence and money. I am apathetic in the hopelessness. That is, until I searched Google for the only thing I could think to call this situation: “The American Dictatorship.”

On this search I came across your article: The coming American dictatorship – Article by John Silveira from Issue #66. [Editor's Note: See also The Coming American Dictatorship, Part XI and The Coming American Dictatorship Parts I - XI]

How apt, succinct, honest and sad I found it. The eloquence of the piece was quite frankly refreshing, disheartening and alarming. I know that is a rather odd compliment, but, I assure you it is true. This article struck a nerve of unwavering truth. And so, I have written you to thank you for stating it as such. Also, to let you know, despite my apathy in regards to our system and the extreme disbelief in any real, meaningful change in our country. I will try, honestly try to be “The people” again. I will not let the feeling of utter helplessness against the idiocy of my peers and the massive size of the machine prevent me from getting started. If you can write, I can write and call and sing and kick and scream and no longer be a bystander to the rape of the inherent rights of humans.

I would also like to point out that I have loathed the loud mouthed opinionated political persons and as such, it will be difficult for me to begin on this path, however, it must be done. I thank you.

Sincerely,

Isaac N. Acuna

 
 


 
 

 
 
 
 
 
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