Inflation and Oil Changes

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They tell us inflation – the benign-sounding word used to euphemize the deliberate devaluation of our money by simply creating new money (pieces of paper) out of thin air and flooding the economy with it – is “only” running about 2 percent of so annually.pouring oil

If so, why has the cost of a quart of oil gone up by, oh several hundred percent?

I’ve done a lot of oil changes over the years. A quart of high-quality non-synthetic oil cost less than $2 a quart when I was in college in the ’80s. That same quart of oil today costs three times as much.

On sale.

I picked up four quarts yesterday. $27.16 before taxes. $6.75 per quart. The usual price is higher.

Synthetics – the run of the mills such as Mobil 1 – cost closer to $9 a quart. If your car craves the top-of-the-line stuff, like Amsoil, the hit per quart is going to be over $11 a quart (see here if you dinna believe me).

And of course, you’ll need a filter to go with the oil. The decent ones cost about $10 per.CPI prices pic

So, assuming the typical car engine’s five quart capacity, an oil change today will cost you anywhere from $35 or so on the low end (decent quality, non-synthetic oil bought on sale; middling quality filter) to $70-plus if you use the good stuff.

This also assumes you do it yourself, of course.

But is the cost real?

That is, are we talking about an actual increase in the intrinsic value of the items in question? Or are we talking about a decrease in the purchasing power of our money – aka inflation? Luckily, the same monopoly at gunpoint that manufactures money out of thin air – the legalized mafia called “government” – also provides an excellent way for us to gauge its slow-drip attenuation of the value of this manufactured money: The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index/Inflation Calculator (see here).slow drip pictures

That $6.75 per quart I just paid? Filtered through the government’s own calculator – which probably fudges in its favor egregiously – that sum is equivalent to $3.37 in 1988 Fed Funny Money. But – as I or anyone else who was doing oil changes back in ’88 will gladly tell you – a quart of oil back then cost about $1.50. The current real price – what it costs us to buy with our constantly worth-less dollars – is therefore about double what it was when I was in college.

But the oil itself doesn’t cost more. The price is simply higher – reflecting the diminished value of the paper “notes” we’re compelled to use as a medium of exchange.

This epic fraud is all the more brilliant for being oleaginous. People don’t realize they’ve been fleeced. After all, they have the same (numerically) dollars in their wallet or their savings account. These dollars just seem to purchase less and less each year. People sigh. They accept this as a normal, natural part of life. But it is neither normal nor natural.

There’d be outrage – and in short order, a violent defensive response – if people came home and noticed things missing from their homes. Not the occasional robbery – but regular, almost daily pilferage. If it became literally impossible for them to hold onto their stuff because someone kept breaking into their homes and helping himself to their stuff. In such a case, of course, people have recourse. They can deadbolt their doors, install security measures – even hire armed guards. It is possible to defend against ordinary theft.pitchfork revolution

It is not possible to defend against the hidden thievery of inflation. No one comes into your home. Your bank account is not obviously debited by some unknown malefactor. You still appear to have the same number of dollars. It just takes more of them to buy “x” than it did previously. This is not perceived as theft – and so people are blase about it.

Ingenious. Fleece the sheep without them even being aware they’ve been fleeced.

And: It’s both theft and a tax – because the theft is done officially, under the color of  law. You cannot escape it – or defend yourself against its depredations. You must simply accept that whatever value you have accumulated in the form of these “notes” issued by the government’s monopoly bank are going to decline in value over time.

Use ’em – or lose ’em.

They don’t want you saving, certainly. Accumulating wealth.

They use inflation to “stimulate” consumption rather than conservation. It makes sense. Why not spend it now, since it will be worth less (buy less) later?

This is why most of us spend our lives trying to avoid drowning – so to speak – rather than ever reaching the safety of shore (financial security).gerbil wheel pic

We run faster on the Gerbil Wheel – work harder in order to accumulate more paper money, in order to maintain the former level of purchasing power, constantly ebbing away. This amounts to the same thing as attempting to bail out a sinking ship by grabbing a bigger bucket.

But the water keeps on rushing in.

Or you can accept material diminishment. The gradual – eventually obvious – reduction in what your money buys. Cadbury Creme Eggs that are one-third as large as they used to be – but the price is still the same. Twelve ounce pounds. It now seems normal to spend $50 to gas up an economy car – and $6.75 for a quart of oil.

It’s not Weimarian – yet. The question is – when will it be Weimarian?

It sure feels as though it’ll be sooner rather than later.

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  1. Dear Bevin,

    It’s fine to learn about fiat money. And see the deceptions of our leaders. And to develop critical thinking and logic. But most crucially, we have to acknowledge our true dimished status. We live in a world where individuals are unimportant. Each of us assigned to a state plantation system of nearly incomprehensible evil.

    Every man is born into this system of nation-rape. From birth conditioned to want to kill anyone from another nation. Is it any wonder there is a decline in values and quality of life. Nearly all 7.1 billion of us our so thoroughly trapped and tethered, that there is almost no hope of becoming free.

    How can it be the whole world is divided into about 200 nations? 200 national rape cages. Almost no one is free. We are livestock pacing about a vast but finite barnyard we don’t have the key to.

    People get upset when someone steals one of their trinkets. Or when they have to acknowledge some petty authority of some local government functionary.

    Why me they ask? Not realizing it has always been their fate, even before they were born. To be an organ, a clump of cells for the state. That each of us pays rent for our own human confinement space.

    At birth our biological umbilical cords wither away. But not our national umbilical cords. All people are tethered together like human grapes that grow from the cracks and ashes of their forefathers. A few grapes are still sweet. But more our souring. Passing from wine, to vinegar, to outright poisonous ooze.

    But no one dares open their eyes and mind and acknowledge the true depths of their absolute fuctitude. Just keep reading the magic symbols. Listening to the magic sounds. Watching the magic images. Anything but see the plain truth right in front of them.

    You’re one of the most thoughtful and civilized people here. Yet when you show a preference for mainland China over local China do you really think this is equivalent to choosing whether to choosing what to eat for dinner, or which shirt to wear?

    Don’t you feel the matrix socket in the back of your head? Feel the tracker pulsing in your vein? Am I alone in experiencing on a visceral level that discussing politics with someone is like two men out in the desert discussing ornithology, all the while they’re both having their entrails ripped out of their by circling buzzards. Super evolved vultures that inject their prey carcasses first, so they don’t feel the claws and beaks?

    You might murder someone a few times in your life. Maybe you’ll rape a few women. Steal a car. Break into a house. Drive so fast you lose control and kill someone in a brutal collision. But you will never approach the all-encompassing crime of the state.

    Nothing you as an individual do will ever approach the immense evil that is the state. An inescapable megaprison with mythical powers beyond our comprehenstion. Invisible spidermen whose webs are all around us and between us and through us.

    Every day it kills you and your children, and then reanimates your corpses to kill you again. It feeds on you. It eats you and then treats you so that you regrow the cannibalized part of yourself so you can be eaten again. It spins the filaments of your surrounding irreality about, so that you don’t see your predators.

    It perverts your every thought and impulse until you let go of everything good and precious in your life and accept their mocking counterfeit replicas of the things you care about. You embrace the decayed cocoon of you wife and daughter. Not the real living body.

    Your own children would likewise kill you if the state asked them to. At any moment the web-spinners can convince your wife to report you to the authorities and to feel gratitude as they execute you for any manner of contrived crimes they might choose to invent. She’ll be so greatful to her all wise and benevolent captors for protecting her from you.

    The clovers see our predicament, not realizing it is also theirs. They revel in drooling glee watching us eat our own grey matter, totally oblivious that long ago they ate out their own innards for the twisted amusements of the nation makers. That their feeling aren’t even their own, but pheromones and groupthoughts that wash over their dessicated husks and shells of the living beings they once were.

    Hannibal Lecter feeds Krendler his last meal

    • Tor – Awesome observations! The truth is all too often very bitter. That’s why most folks don’t seem to want to know the truth in my limited life experience. Thanks for putting this up.

    • @ Tor – Didn’t’ he laugh a few times in the movie? Reminds me of a certain large entity admired by some.

      He is frequently depicted preparing gourmet meals from his victims’ flesh, the most famous example being his admission in the film adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs that he once ate a census taker’s liver “with fava beans and a nice Chianti”. He is deeply offended by rudeness, and frequently kills people who have bad manners—or, as he calls them in Hannibal, “free-range rude”. Prior to his capture and imprisonment, he was a member of Baltimore, Maryland’s social elite, and a sitting member of the Baltimore Philharmonic Orchestra’s board of directors.

  2. “Or do you still insist on treating people whose actions show them to be responsible as presumptively irresponsible on the basis of nothing more than someone else’ subjective feelings about “risk”?”

    Eric: When they show up speeding on my residential street, weaving that motorbike in and out of traffic at 100mph on roads I use or driving without proper insurance among other things- YES, because such behaviour is the poster child for irresponsible. Otherwise as I have said before- IF you wish to turn yourself into road kill, go for it. I don’t care in the least as long as 100% of the associated costs fall on your heirs and no one else is harmed in person or property..

    • Mike,

      Your premise is a cartoonish hyperbole.

      This image of a maniac riding (or driving) 100 mph through cul-de-sacs. Which you then conflate with “speeding” (defined as what? by whom?) … and then you toss in the “proper” insurance thing. What is “proper,” Mike? according to whom? You?

      Look: I’ve got a record of 30 years of accident-free driving. I’m apparently a pretty safe driver. I’d prefer not to buy insurance at all – certainly not for all my vehicles, several of which mostly sit. Yet I am forced to – costing me thousands of dollars, thereby undermining my financial security as well as violating my right not to be robbed to pay for things I don’t want or need.

      Your mistake is the assumption that laws will protect you from dangerous/reckless people. They don’t. But they do take away the liberty (and property) of people like myself who pose no threat to you at all.

    • PS: Your spelling of “behaviour” strongly suggests you’re not originally from Wichita or anywhere else in America. It suggests you’re a native-born Brit (or other commonwealth country). Not that there’s anything wrong with that. But given the UK is strongly inclined toward collectivism, it’s not surprising to me that a native Brit would express collectivist sentiments.

      • could be. but “colours, by alexander julian” – GREAT clothing – is from nc.

        if every collectivist colour but red/white/blue-borns were expelled (expectorated?) today, the place would still be chock full (o’ phlegm).

      • Eric – I’m with Ozy on this one. I too will use colour rather than color and centre rather than center, etc., just to buck the ‘Murican norm. So even though I disagree with a lot…well…most of what MFW seems to espouse, I won’t necessarily conclude that he’s from the British Empire (well, okay, I must concede that we’re still apparently a “colony”, but Kansas came into the U.S. much later) just because he spells behaviour “correctly.” I know, I know, it’s nit picking and that’s MFW’s stock in trade; but you do have to admit that he’s considerably higher on the literacy food chain than Clover. I mean really, we should look for the good in people, even if they are statist control freaks (removing tongue from cheek). 😀

    • MIW just doesn’t get it.

      He can’t understand the critical difference between rules and laws.

      Rules are essential. Laws are not.

      Correction! That is an inaccurate and misleading understatement. Laws are not merely non-essential. They are anathema. They are the bane of mankind.

      Laozi’s claim that “the more laws one makes, the more criminals one creates” is the antithesis of the statist assertion that more laws make better citizens.

      The statist is a danger to social harmony because he thinks in terms of regulations and laws; he wishes to construct a society like geometry, and does not realize that such regulation destroys the living freedom and vigor of the parts. The simpler man, who knows from his own experience the pleasure and efficacy of work, conceived and carried out in liberty, is less of a peril when he is in power, for he does not have to be told that a law is a dangerous thing, and injures more than it helps.

      Recognizing that human beings act out of self-interest, Laozi felt that, if left alone, they would harmonize whatever disputes arose through adherence to the natural rhythm of the universe. The good of the individual leads to the good of the community and that the best society, then, operates on natural, not man-made, laws.

      • profusious say: law is discovery, not invention.

        discoveries written into the corpus are nutritious calories. legalitarian* inventions tattooed into carcasses* mark cannibals’* fare.

        *l’egalitarian: All animals are equal. amended: All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others. ~ seven commandments of animalism

        *carcasses: in carcosa now. foot in the past, foot in the future, yellow king whizzing all over the present….

        *cannibal: “survivor type”, marooned, serially amputates, eats, parts of himself. a limited, À la carte menu, not a cornucopiate buffet – but h/opiates pleasantly tint. “As far as short stories are concerned, I like the grisly ones the best. However the story “Survivor Type” goes a little bit too far, even for me.” eight million stories in the naked city, each one a serial box(ing helena)….

  3. @BrentP
    that seems like a nice little plaza for the people that live in that neighborhood.

    its fits in well with the anti-car agenda, because a formerly functional street is now replaced with hoi polloi sitting around on chairs and tables.

    how many hours will pass before all the chairs and tables are gone? that is one question I have. This space is going to suffer from the socialist calculation problem sooner or later most likely.

    Perhaps what can be done is to state the known facts and look at the various angles and leave it at that. Maybe sometimes dissonance must be allowed to reign and final cognition must remain in suspension.


      “dyin’ ain’t much of a livin’ boy…”

      dichotomizin’, either. good, albeit banal, vs evil, milgram’s pilgrims vs “mytho”authority, etc.

      dialecticin’ has a place, but it ain’t source. and the main socratic is autho-bureaucratic: when the bureau said “die”, soc said “when?” & was right on schedule, too.

      the end of diellusion…pt. ∞ of never gonna’ happen……human nature ain’t a problem to be solved; it just is. understanding it, or just trying to, comporting lonesome individual island selves accordingly, is within pre-calibrated range of some homeostats, just not many. & tryin’ to clump-link those few together into a speedstar, as compelling as that sensation might be, well, gravity just is….

      • That’s just cyberlicious Ozy. Thanks.

        I hope more will join you. Cowboy up and wrangle up a few posts and links. It’s getting kind of quiet.

        I know the posting gate is a bummer, but c’mon do the captcha or register or whatever. It’s not like you’re being asked to risk your reputation and future on a website or something. Someone else is already living that financial nightmare journalistic dream for us.

        Donate, contribute content, direct some traffic towards this site, at least state your opinion or say howdy.

        The Alexa global rank of this site is 173,076, still below its 6 month max, but the best its been in a while.

        That would put this site at number 33 if it were included in this list of Top Libertarian Sites.

        Maybe someone could get this site added to this list? Every small effort makes a difference. Are we really less PR savvy than a simple content aggregator like

  4. Bad inhuman urbanism:

    Liberty Square – Taipei – ROC

    Vegas architecture is absolutely brutal. Even if you’re a paying hotel guest. There is almost nowhere to sit or rest anywhere unless it involves consumption and spending.

    Unless you want to sit in front of a slot machine, or at a table belonging to a restaurant. You must stand. And even then, you will always be in the way of endless streams of impatient people from every direction.

    The trend towards individually unlivable cities are by worldwide design. I always find it funny how well people behave in a Walmart or a mall. It’s like they’re in a church. Nowhere is there more respectful and reverent behavior than in a store. It’s absolutely mind boggling really.

    Common Lines of Flight Towards the Open City

    Major Components of the One World Prison
    1 spectacle
    2 choke point
    3 commons
    4 camp
    5 watchtower
    6 museum
    7 check point
    8 white city

    Conspiracy Architecture Handbook

    “Many of the tensions between scientific,
    phenomenological and post-structuralist
    definitions of theory have been rehearsed,
    elaborated and reconsidered in one way or

    many voices were raised that pleaded for a more modest understanding of architecture’s capacities to critically
    reflect on the world, given that architecture is, out of necessity, mostly complicit with the flows of capital that increasingly structure that world.. This formulation was, in a way, a foregrounding of the disciplinary medium –
    bricks, mortar, glass, concrete and capital – and practice at the expense of the philosophical reflection that animated earlier theoretical paradigms.”

    There is a problem with labels that come from the outside. I don’t think Kunstler calls himself a new urbanist.

    And what are the boundaries of that label? Is it merely an architectural preference, or does it include mandatory design using looted public funds taken at gunpoint?

    Agenda 21 may be a good idea in so far as it can be implemented voluntarily. It’s evil because it is being undertaken by force and in secret by unknown powers of inhumane ruthlessness.

    • Dear Tor,

      Yeah. I agree.

      That Liberty Square is a “vast wasteland.”

      Also, the irony of a goonvermin “Liberty Square” is not lost on me.

  5. So here is the evil laid bare. 1/8 of the inhabited land area of the Earth is shown to be controlled and owned by a piece of legal paper and a few bureaucrats in a far away capitol.

    Russia’s ban on smoking in cafés, restaurants comes into force

    Sure the old slavery of the southern US plantation owners has been overthrown. But because it was done the wrong way; By the use of centralized group force, a new kind of all-encompassing slavery has taken hold and now it involves nearly every human being, not just a few hundred thousand Africans and Irish.

    You build or buy a cafe or restaurant all by yourself. But it is not truly your property. You are at the whim of an absolute tyrant. There is somewhere in a distance capitol, the real owner. The plantation owner. In a very real sense, he is your master.

    Run Nigger Run – From 12 years a slave

    It’s been a hell of a lot longer than 12 years a slave for nearly everyone now. Is there a plan? Do we just learn to live with this status? Or are we going to start throwing off these chains the right way once and for all?

  6. “A good place for the maximum freedom would be right next to the nuclear power plants. The kind of people who value freedom above all else are not going to worry about a few extra rems per day. ”

    Yeah…….what the heck they wouldn’t die for a month or so. You have no idea what a rem actually is or measures do ya.

    • Mike,

      Your issue – the thing that gets your back up – appears to be free choice. Whether for good – or ill (as defined by someone else)… irrelevant to the question: Is it your business? Your right to forcibly intervene?

      If, for instance, I desire to buy a piece of land adjacent to a nuclear plant and come to terms with the owner – then whether the rems are “x” or “y” is no one else’s business but mine, assuming nothing was misrepresented to me by the seller. Even if I am subjecting myself to a lethal dose.


      Similarly, if I decide I want to build a dry cabin (no running water) without a grid connection to electricity on land I bought and paid for, no one has the right (ethically speaking) to dictate to me – at gunpoint, threatening me with lethal violence – to have a well drilled that’s “up to code” and the house connected to the power line.


      I understand you may consider the choices made by others to be ill-advised or even foolish – and perhaps sometimes they are. But even if they are, it is still none of your business. Not unless what they’re doing has caused you (or some other innocent person) a tangible, actual harm.

      This is the point of contention between us.

      The rest is trivia.

      • “Your issue – the thing that gets your back up – appears to be free choice. Whether for good – or ill (as defined by someone else)… irrelevant to the question: Is it your business? Your right to forcibly intervene? ”

        Wrong as usual Eric. I value freedom of choice highly, so long as ALL consequences of that Choice fall upon the one making the choice and ONLY upon that person. BUT YOU Eric MUST be free to choose to endanger others and WITHOUT consequence at that.

        No govmint or anyone else gonna tell YOU not to ride that motorcycle at 100 mph with neither helmet\leathers nor insurance, by damn!!!!! Now really Eric I could care less if you dump that cycle on some lonely superslab in Montana or even on the 101 at rush hour in Cali as long as there is room for the rest of us to get safely around and money in your ‘estate’ to cover the cost of getting the roadkill gathered up off the road and disposed of at the landfill.Clover

        Thing is in the real world your demand to be free to ride at 100 mph just might include my residential street where its just one zig into my car (and you uninsured) or a zag up over the curb into my kids/grandkids or my pets whom frankly I value infinitely more than your carcass dead or alive let alone your narcissistic take on freedom.

        Regarding your (to you) rhetorical question- “Is it your business? Your right to forcibly intervene? ” Absolutely, behaviour on your part which puts me and mine at risk will not be tolerated. That you are too self-absorbed to see or care about the danger you are creating for the rest of us does not matter. What matters is the rest of us see the danger you create and put a stop to it.

        • Mike,

          Let’s examine your contradictory language:

          “I value freedom of choice highly, so long as ALL consequences of that Choice fall upon the one making the choice and ONLY upon that person.”

          Great! We’re in total agreement! Except you then write:

          “BUT YOU Eric MUST be free to choose to endanger others and WITHOUT consequence at that.”

          Mike, if there are no consequences (i.e., harm caused) then how have I endangered anyone?

          Maybe I scared someone. Annoyed them. But have I harmed them?


          You equate assertion of risk (subjectively defined) with actual harm caused. There is a big difference.

          Clover – and perhaps you – believe I am “endangering” others by driving “x” speed. Can you not see that this is entirely subjective and arbitrary? Not all that long ago, 56 MPH on the Interstate was “speeding” and taken as “endangering” others. Now the speed limit on the same Interstate is 75. Who is “endangered,” Mike? How?

          You and yours want your feelings to be the standard for doing violence to others. You feel that “x” is “endangering” others. It hasn’t actually caused anyone any harm. But you’re ready to sic armed thugs on these “dangerous people” regardless. On the basis of “might” – and “what if.”

          I also note that you produce literally hysterical extreme “what ifs” to justify your position. For example, riding 100 MPH through a suburban neighborhood with frolicking toddlers abounding. It’s absurd. Most people don’t do such things – irrespective of “the law” – because most people are not deliberately reckless maniacs. They’re interested in self-preservation and have no desire to harm anyone else, either. And as for the handful of people who are reckless manics? When has “the law” ever been an impediment to them?

          Your hystericism ends up dumbing down everything to an absurd extent – such that (as an example) it is statutory “reckless driving” to do 81 MPH on a highway with a posted speed limit of 70 and the average speed of 85 percent of traffic in the 75-80 range.

          Helmets are mandatory – but not long pants. Why not require armored leathers? Hell, why not ban bikes altogether given the “risk” of riding is higher than driving in an air bag-festooned car? Put speed limiters on all vehicles so that no one can go faster than 20 MPH – since fatal accidents could be all but eliminated that way…

          Where does it end?

          And, consider that what comes around goes around. I have no doubt there a number of things you do (or don’t do) that I could assert entail the possibility of “risk” – either to yourself or others. I wonder whether you’re overweight… maybe you don’t get “enough” exercise.” Maybe your sexual practices are “risky” . . .

          By your own collectivist standards, I have every right to sic armed goons on you for almost any reason – because after all, almost any of your actions (or non actions) might entail “risk.” Could result in harm.

          It’s a recipe for totalitarian busybodyism, Mike. Is that what you want? No? Then, how do you propose to prevent it? By what standard?

          There is only one standard that holds water, Mike: Has harm been done?

          If it has, then hold the person responsible for the harm done.

          If not, leave him – and everyone else – alone.

          • “BUT YOU Eric MUST be free to choose to endanger others and WITHOUT consequence at that.”

            Mike, if there are no consequences (i.e., harm caused) then how have I endangered anyone?”

            Lets just cut to the chase Eric- IF YOU INJURE SOMEONE due to your need for speed are you prepared to IMMEDIATELY pay whatever is required to make said person(s) and their Property whole? Are you prepared to pay both your Life and your Property (all of it) if your recklessness destroys the Life of another? If not pardon me if I believe that its just safer to keep you in enough fear of the Law so as to somewhat reduce your reckless disregard of the safety of others.

            • Yes, Mike – I am. Because I am responsible. My record speaks to this. Sure, I “speed” – but I have not so much as scratched a fender in decades. It’s not unreasonable to conclude I must be a pretty decent driver, even if I do drive faster than “the law” allows. Luck doesn’t explain it.

              I am regularly trusted by all the major car companies with brand-new cars, some of them extremely expensive, as well as extremely powerful. I manage not to wreck them – or injure anyone. For going on 25 years now.

              What does this say about me?

              I’ve owned guns most of my life; I carry a gun routinely, in public (though concealed). I’ve never once shot anyone or threatened to or mishandled my weapons in any way. The risk of my doing so is virtually nil – because I am careful with my guns and because I respect other people’s rights.

              My record of safe, responsible handling speaks for itself.

              You trot out an exaggerated, absurd picture of me as a dangerous loon indifferent to the well-being of others who desires only to run amok. The truth of it is, Mike, I’m a guy in my 40s, married for almost 13 years, own my home, no debt. Near perfect credit score. Have always paid my bills on time and in full.

              What does that say about me?

              So, yes, Mike – I am willing to bear full responsibility for my actions. Because I act judiciously and responsibly. According to my standards, yes – but demonstrably in a way that is responsible. The facts speak for themselves. I don’t cause other people harm.

              So we’re on the same page…. right?

              Or do you still insist on treating people whose actions show them to be responsible as presumptively irresponsible on the basis of nothing more than someone else’ subjective feelings about “risk”?

              At what point does my record of not causing harm trump your worry that I “might”?

        • no harm, no foul.

          yes harm, yes, foul.

          no harm, yes foul…there’s something rotten in denmark;
          stockholm (state of mind), to be precise.

          risk free rate of return, sugar free, etc – illusions. & set-ups. hugely counterproductive ones.

          there’s an old saying: you can get rid of middlemen (legitimate ones, is meant) – but you can’t get rid of their functions. risk is one of the most functionally important “middlemen” there is.

          was at the doc’s recently (not a legit middleman – merely a toll collector…). he “didn’t like” my lipids “profile”; that it launched him into up-sell mode, as in trying to lard up his discretionary spending ability, at my expense, he liked a lot…. i told him his numbers were analogies. i told him he was unable to tell me anything about me. that all he has is epidemiological, actuarial, bell curve mean/median/mode numbers that he is wont to say “represent” me & should therefore bluntly dictate my actions, particularly as regards things he’d like to debit me for. i told him that although betting the numbers across a long series of hands is probabilistically correct, i am one, single, hand, not a series, & that he has nothing to say about this one hand, what’s in it or how it plays out.

          “…making the wrong move, at the right time.”

          what I didn’t tell him is that his cartel-caste’s color of law risk reduction machinations did not control or eliminate risk, it merely transferred, & locked in, risk to me (& to all so-called “patients”). privatized profit, socialized risk, locked in place – no (or vastly much slower) progress. this is harm, huge harm, without foul to the made guys inflicting it. this is preventing risk from providing its processual function – which only dams it up, magnifies pressure, & guarantees catastrophic failure.

          the bell curve. lots of heads inside that noose shaped cartel, in that water-filled hole in the ground shaped cartel. & many of the heads that aren’t noosed, or underwater, are being kicked by all those flailing strangulation jiggers, dragged under by all those terror stricken-strong drowners. oxygen deprived brains, irony impervious brains, gallows-swinging, water-inhaling, self-fulfilling prophets. “brooks was here.” frogs, scorpions, mutual drowning (im)pacts…

          “you arrogant ass…you’ve killed us!”

    • MFW – REM or Roentgen Equivalent Man is how one measures ionizing radiation absorbed by the human body or “dose” as opposed to the Roentgen which is the measure of the radiation itself. I spent nearly two decades in nuclear power as an I & C tech as well as being qualified as an Advanced Nuclear Worker (carrying out many of the responsibilities of a Health Physics tech). I performed work both in the RCA (Radiological Control Area) and went on numerous “at power” containment entries; I wasn’t a desk jockey (I’ve replaced the Excore Nuclear Instruments on an operating reactor more than once). I would have received a higher dose if I’d spent that same amount of time in an organic food coop in Denver due not only to the higher elevation (less atmospheric shielding from cosmic radiation) but also the higher concentrations of naturally occurring uranium in the soil (and the attendant radon gas exposure) than I did occupationally. Safety and limiting our exposure were drilled into us through frequent training and written procedures. Failure to comply with rules, regulations and procedures could not only get you terminated, but prosecuted as well. No nuclear utility wants the bad publicity that an “incident” brings in from an already ignorant and hostile press, so they run a much tighter ship than fossil and hydro plants do.

      Nuclear power, as proven in Canada, Europe and the United States is quite safe and had it not been so heavily regulated, [intentionally] bringing its costs up to the level of coal as well stifling new technologies and development, it would be quite inexpensive and even safer than it already is. And don’t even try the Chernobyl argument; that was a weapons grade plutonium facility in a tin shed, that merely produced electricity as a by-product; brought to you government, not the private sector. By the way, that area has recovered nicely is now a wildlife refuge and a tourist attraction despite the Soviet government’s best efforts to destroy the area and the doomsday ruminations of the green left. Before you go off about Fukushima Daiichi, it was government that allowed GE to build those Gen II BWRs to begin with. The bureaucrats never should have allowed that project in a historically known Tsunami zone (or at least not without an adequate sea wall). Once again your venerated government dropped the ball (and I’ll bet officials were paid off to allow the corner cutting when those units were built).

      I personally don’t want to live within 20 minutes of my workplace much less right next door, so I wouldn’t buy right next to a nuke unit any more than I would buy next to an organic food coop if I worked there. My daily driving time is precious to me. But there are plenty of people who would and do buy right near the plant where I used to work. Is there a possibility of an incident? Of course. There’s also the possibility of tanker truck full of benzene or a train car full of anhydrous ammonia overturning upwind of your neighborhood too. That’ll kill you quite a bit quicker than the radon you may very well already have in your home naturally or living next to any power plant. Life is not without risks Mike. Every time you get behind the wheel you’re taking a risk. Every bite of food is risky. I’m all for being careful, safe and using common sense. But receiving maximum rewards in this life require that we take certain risks. Some may be more important to me than to you and as long as it doesn’t hurt you, it’s none of your business if I choose to do so. That’s the real American way; not this bubble wrapped, Styrofoam helmet clad, heavily regulated Panopticon you and your fellow travelers want to exist (not live) in.

      • Dear Boothe,

        “And don’t even try the Chernobyl argument; that was a weapons grade plutonium facility in a tin shed, that merely produced electricity as a by-product; brought to you government, not the private sector.”

        Amen to that!

        As usual, it is the goonvermin that is behind the worst disasters. Katrina is another example. A US Army Corps of Engineers boondoggle.

        Thanks for sharing about your background as nuclear industry insider. Much appreciated!

      • Fukushima Daiichi had to have been designed by bureaucrats with good at school engineers. First, a nuke plant, off the ocean coast in an earthquake zone. Now that’s bad right off the back and it was probably the property chosen by government for the usual reason. but that’s not where it ends. The design of the plant is stupid. Beyond stupid.

        They put the emergency generators in the basement. They put the waste fuel storage pools on the upper floors. That kind of assbackwardness can only come from a pointy haired bureaucrat. It’s like where can we put the emergency generators in the most danger… meanwhile they have pools that need to stay filled with water… so put them in holes in the ground. They’ll stay filled with water that way. Idiots.

        This isn’t hindsight is 20/20 this is the basics of living on a planet with lots of water and gravity.

        Now it’s just out of the media… oh GM had some engineering documentation issue with a spring change in an ignition switch… big huge deal…. nuke plant spewing radiation… crickets.

      • Boothe- no need to explain to me what a rem is. I already know. That is why I was mocking your fellow libertarian anarchist who quite clearly DID NOT know by a country mile which causes me to wonder what other blind spots based on pure ignorance of basic real world facts this gent has.

        • MikeFromWichita – I think you missed the thrust of Tor’s original post. Let me add a little to it. You seem concerned that if there were no government (like that’s really ever going to happen, so let’s settle on virtually no central government) or at least a severely restricted central government (i.e. a return to fundamental Constitutional restraints and individual Liberty) that people would be ripping up and down your residential street like they were on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Probably not, but as Tor pointed out, with individual city or community rules (yes, it would amount to local government or at least free market contracts) you and your neighbors would be free to restrict speeds through your neighborhood. In fact, the most efficient and “fair” way to do that would be to install speed bumps. Spacing and height would determine the desired speed restriction. Better yet, by setting them high enough, you could fix it so no one could even enter “your” neighborhood with a Ferrari, Porsche or even a Corvette!

          One clear advantage to this is that you only have to pay for them at installation. They don’t require a salary, a fancy car with numerous electronic gadgets on board, health insurance, a retirement plan nor do they carry pepper spray, a Taser, a gun and or an attitude. “Engineered safeguards” like speed bumps ensure that not only do strangers passing through adhere to your strict local standards, but so must you and all your neighbors; true equal protection under “the laws of physics.” Failure to obey will result in instant feedback (your head hitting the roof) and financial penalties based on the cost of tires, shock absorbers and alignments. Folks like us that value our freedom will diligently avoid your area for the most part, I assure you. Problem solved. Just don’t ask the rest of us to subsidize your local solution. If that’s what you and your immediate neighbors want, you pay for it yourselves. If you want 24 hour surveillance and militarized police patrolling your neighborhood as well, wonderful. But you need to foot the bill. I strenuously object to you and your neighbors seeking state or federal funds (i.e. part of the fruits of my labor that were stolen from me under pain of death) to “subsidize” your dreams and desires; pay your own way.

          I, on the other hand, may choose (and I do) to reside on a rural two lane road that’s a bit rough (thanks to government “maintenance”) and for the most part unmarked. Guess what? I know that we will have the errant kid on a sport bike go by at a buck thirty. At least occasionally we’ll have a “Bubba” in a 70-something pickup running near 100 when he’s late for work, periodically a cow or pig will be in the right of way, combines and big tractors may take up a lane and a half or a granny in her Mercury Marquis will drive down the middle of the road. In fact most of my “mainstream” neighbors, probably a lot like you, flagrantly ignore the 55 MPH limit and routinely run 65 & 70. This doesn’t bother me. I understand the risks; I avoid the hazards and take responsibility for my own safety. I don’t pick up the phone and dial the Federales every time that kid on his bike rips by; he’s either going to be a good rider or out of the gene pool soon enough. If he hit’s me and takes me out, I’ll just consider it my time to go; none of us will make it out of here alive anyway. But more than likely it would be my fault for not paying attention, because I would be just as dead if I step out in from of some farmer’s flatbed at 55. Freedom can be messy, so if you don’t want to deal with the mess, then stay out of my neighborhood. And if I come into your “gated community” to visit you or one of your neighbors I will respect your private property rights including your private road restrictions. I think keeping things local, preferably private, and therefore largely avoidable by those of us that differ, is a fair compromise. Don’t you?

          Where I have a problem is with folks stealing the fruits of my (and by extension my neighbors’) labor to feather their own nests and dole out that ill-gotten gain to their cronies and fellow travelers to pay for agendas and projects I wouldn’t voluntarily support (not that it’s any less theft even if I do agree with them) and hire rough men with guns to place restrictions on my rights. I doesn’t matter how great you think the current system is (and we both know very well this current system has more than a plenty of glaring defects), when you take people’s property from them under pain of death when they have done no demonstrable harm to anyone else, it’s armed robbery. Robes or uniforms, medallions or badges, pike poles or Glocks make no difference; it is still violence based naked theft. And with the founding document for this country considered, it is illegal as well as unlawful. The plain language of the Constitution still stands; flawed or not, ignored or not.

          Even if I was an Anarchist or a Libertarian as you assert (I am merely an individual, I’m not part of any group although I may agree with some of their principles) I would say that moving back to the restrictions placed on government by the Constitution would certainly be a good start; then we could pare it down from there even more. But when you step beyond the enumerated powers of that document you are violating the Supreme Law of the Land. At that point, regardless of your “feelings” and opinions about what is safe or reasonable or proper, you are violating not only the spirit of the law but the letter as well and you are violating my rights. That makes you, Mike, the outlaw, not me. And I was taught at a very early age by a very wise man that when you violate someone else’s rights you implicitly forfeit your own. Consider the potential ramifications of that principle in light of “You reap what you sow”; pretty soon it won’t be the tradesmen, or the union members, or the infirm, or the Jews that have no rights, it will be you.

          • “I think you missed the thrust of Tor’s original post. ” what thrust Boothe? He made an illiterate error regarding what a rem is by a factor of 1000. End of Story.

            But hey keep your pickup truck away from my gated community & we will get along fine. I certainly wouldn’t drive the Lexus on your rural ‘roads’.

          • “…when you violate someone else’s rights you implicitly forfeit your own.”

            yep. self-taught that one.

            saw a moose recently. right next to the car i was parking, foot of the driveway. it was stripping bark snacks off an aspen tree & posing for the camera-phone. that’s all it did & so it stayed a moose. if it had gotten “trespassive”, as moose sometimes do, it would have remade itself into a thing, to be dealt with at my discretion. same holds for human animals. that’s not constitutional, or law of this, that or “the (other) land”, that’s just the law, a priori like…tho law of the planet kinda’ has a ring to it.

            btw, constitution is the color of law doc that foots the whole bill of goods. bill of rights is like FREE SAMPLES! or SALE! or BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE!

            the hamiltonistas tried to cut thru the isthmus of topo’theworldma, but the canal wasn’t quite ready to float such tonnage, so they went ‘round the horn. it took longer, but they still got exactly where they wanted to go.

            yankeedoodle dandy


            white heat


            same guy(s)…dr. jekyll’s island hyde-skinners….

            going back to that would be like:

            “i have been stabbed, shot, poisoned, frozen, hung, electrocuted, and burned….”


          • i.e., constitution is the very same violation you’re writing about….

            “SLL”…the caps thing: worship is one little vanna, if you please, away from warship….

          • MikeFromWichita – Tor’s thrust was that less centralization and more local and individual freedom would be preferable to the course this nation is on now. Basically, you go live in your gated community and leave us alone to live next to our nuclear power plants out in the country if that’s what we want. We enjoy or freedom, you enjoy your self imposed captivity and we all enjoy abundant low cost and reliable electricity. How is that wrong?

            Your nit picking over “rems” is nothing more than a non sequitur in response to the real point of the post. Although you do tend to be substantially more literate than our Clover (who admits to having little concern for writing ability), your ad hominem attacks, nit picking and non sequitur responses to the key thought patterns in a post define who you really are; close minded, self centered and pragmatic without regard to real moral and ethical absolutes. If you can wheedle your way through a corrupt system and turn a profit, it’s all good, right?

            Your Acura vs. pickup truck dig at me spells it out; you show yourself to be more concerned about material possessions, your own safety and your own comfort than you are about other people’s rights or even right and wrong. In the long run, that kind of approach to life and society brings on tyranny, oppression, poverty and misery; no problem for you though because you’ll work through the system right or wrong (i.e. you’ll strive to be a “party member” in good standing) to ensure your personal success. Am I right?. It’s far easier to avoid the truth when it might require you to change the things you do or to reevaluate your beliefs; so you assuage the cognitive dissonance experience when you come here by attempting to ridicule those of us that see through the status quo and dare to publicly discuss our contrarian views.

            Follow the herd if you will Mike, but remember at one time the herd believed that the world was flat, the sun revolved around the earth and you could treat pneumonia by bleeding. Contrarians whose viewpoints were later vindicated were all too often burned at the stake with folks like you, Clover and Gil cheering it on, beer in hand. It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth (or in this case engage your keyboard) and remove all doubt.

    • 1 Thanks for chiming in to correct my use of rem when millirem or tenth of a millirem(milliSievert) would be more accurate!

      2 I used Rem as an argumentum ad absurdum for quasi humorous effect but why not be accurate?

      “The United States unit of measurement for radiation dose is the rem (Roentgen Equivalent Man)”

      “On average, Americans receive a radiation dose of about 0.62 rem each year.” (6,200 milliSieverts, 620 millirems, 17 milliSieverts a day)

      We’re all being dosed. I spend my day at 2500 – 3000 feet above sea level and likely absorb more radiation than the 17 milliSieverts per day you absorb.

      3 I would wager that one of the main reasons 2 million people are living in the God forsaken burning desert basin called Las Vegas, is to enjoy a few more modicums(not a real unit, meant to be funny) of freedom than the average meriKan.

  7. @DR
    Good stuff. Cluster F@ck Nation has a long litany of commentors, and a lot of them are really excellent and interesting.

    I can engage in all the complex machinations and pretend I’m also a likeminded scholar with that crowd, and perhaps I shall.

    But let me put this more simple idea out there. An idea that gets complete freedom for those willing to pay the full price for it.

    Nuclear power can easily replace all the other fuels. Right now today. It can power vehicles, home, industry you name it. It’s only government and hand wringing Nancy boys that stop it from doing so.

    There are plenty of men still of the earth who are more than willing to extract the ore. Refine it. Build the plants. And run them night and day at all times. These men can be kept far away from the cowering suburban squealing califaggits who wet themselves if the smog count goes too high.

    The centralized power we’ve lived under need only be used to protect the centralized powers property and personnel and not extend outside the “castle walls” to every square inch of territory and every single human.

    Imagine each capital, state capital, county seat being walled cities of immense order and homogeneity. And each major city being a corporate haven with streets as orderly as an aisle at Walmart.

    Most people would want to live there or live nearby where the forced civility everyone is used to can continue.

    But this need not be everywhere. Indeed it should not. That is what is causing all the problems.

    Yes this means murder, incest, harems, orgies, rape, slavery, theft, cheating, nudity, drugs, duels, torture, organ selling, human experiments, you name it may conceivably be legal somewhere for some people. So what. It’s this variance that allows us to best move forward as a species.

    A good place for the maximum freedom would be right next to the nuclear power plants. The kind of people who value freedom above all else are not going to worry about a few extra rems per day.

    Over time the lawless heathens will become used to all manner of radiations, toxins, and dangerous jungle justice situations.

    When did it become everyones sworn mission to make sure men of all mindsets must never be permitted to pursue whatever it is they want to pursue. To endure what they’re willing to endure to have what they want to have.

    When did it become okay not to give a full days wages and some true time off to enjoy ones wages? When did everyone become such insufferable metrosexual assh*les?

  8. Follow the Yellow Brick Code:

    The Crime of 1873 (demonetization of silver) allowed the US govt and insiders to buy out most of the Midwest Farmers and Western Ranchers for pennies on the dollar.

    General/President Grant came after the farmers and ranchers wealth every bit as ruthlessly as he had for the Southern Plantation owners.

    • Another article about the “end of mass motoring”. Do you consider yourself a New Urbanist like Kunstler?

      I have no words to share directly regarding Kunstler, because he appears diametrically opposed to everything I believe in.

      I think the UK is at the helm of enforcing worldwide scarcity to maximize control and power. Look at how little they’ve done with the vast expanses of Canada & Australia. But let’s stay on your topic and perspective.

      I’m still interested in discussion; if the GDP bubbles burst (because of nature or the PTB cartel) and stop inflating, then what?

      The ghastly tragedy of the suburbs

      J H Kunstler

      New Urbanism

      Principles of Intelligent Urbanism

      1.1 a balance with nature
      1.2 a balance with tradition
      1.3 appropriate technology
      1.4 conviviality
      1.4. A place for the individual
      1.4.2 A place for friendship
      1.4.3 A place for householders
      1.4.4 A place for the neighborhood
      1.4.5 A place for communities
      1.4.6 A place for the city domain
      1.5 efficiency
      1.6 human scale
      1.7 opportunity matrix
      1.8 regional integration
      1.9 balanced movement
      1.10 institutional integrity

      Nature in the City – On Sustainable Development

      New Urbanism = Stack-a-Prole = Agenda 21= Banksters Bum Rush

      • New urbanism? Nah, not my thing. I live on fifty acres and that’s too close to neighbors for me. Like I said, I like JHK’s turn of phrase. He voted for Obama – no way I could ever forgive anyone for that, but he writes some good stuff. I do think he’s kind of “lost in a Norman Rockwell” painting when it comes to modern life. But he’s point on about a whole lot of things, imo. I enjoy his Monday morning screeds.
        And you and I already have done the Peak Oil discussion, so I won’t belabor any of that again – agree to disagree.

        • I greatly enjoyed Kunstler’s Ted Talk about American Architecture I posted. Fred Reed had a similar article about Mexican cities having communal agora areas unlike the US. The US is North Korea with a credit card.

          I sometimes find myself agreeing to disagree with things I wrote a week ago.

          As to peak oil I really couldn’t care less if they pump another barrel of oil out the ground or not. I can take or leave all this complexity and just as easily throw up a hammock between two trees if they’ll just leave me be. I could easily get lost in a Bob Ross Painting myself.

          I just want to make my own choices and have everyone else KTMOM(keep their mitts off me)

          • Yep, that TED talk was gold, I thought. I read JHK every Monday, religiously. He usually has something up worth reading.

          • Dear Tor,

            New Urbanism.

            It involves at least two questions.

            1. Does the architectural and urban design have intrinsic merit?
            2. Are its advocates calling for coerced implementation by governments?

            My own take?

            I like the New Urbanism. But only if it is implemented via the free market.

            Can it be? I see no reason why it can’t. Under a free market, large scale private developers could plan them using private capital and without resort to eminent domain.

            Some advocates of the New Urbanism may well be socialist command economy types. But that does not mean that the New Urbanism has to be implement via socialism.

          • The new urbanism is agenda 21.
            I’ve been playing on one of their Rockefeller foundation funded websites. They are not free market. They are anti-car. They are anti-freedom. They want to tell everyone how they should live.

            They pretend to be pro bicycle and transit. Yet, when transit and bicycle improvements don’t hurt driving they don’t support them, even oppose some by saying some alternative that hurts driving is better.

            When I challenge them to be fully free market they show they can’t handle that. The last thing they want is someone providing privately built parking where the market needs it. They’ll use free market principles to oppose zoning enforced parking minimums, to support building developments without parking, but they’ll then turn around and use zoning and other anti-free market tools to stop someone from building parking.

            The thing is, if they were really pro-transit and pro-bicycling, and pro-walkable neighborhoods a totally free market system would probably give them about 80% of what they wanted just because that’s what was done when we had a much freer market. But control freaks don’t settle for 80% and they certainly can’t just leave things alone to happen, they must control it.

          • Dear Brent,

            New Urbanism linked to Agenda 21?

            You may be right. I really don’t know.

            I’m just saying that the free market could create the same results as the New Urbanism if left to its own devices.

            Socialists love MRT systems. They love to ram them down our throats. But free markets could have created MRT systems as well.

          • Dear Brent,

            It always comes back to “public” vs. private property.

            So-called “public” property is always the thin edge of the totalitarian clover wedge.

            It always provides the superficially plausible pretext for ever-tightening government controls.

            I’ve come to the conclusion that until societies realize the necessity of TOTAL PRIVATIZATION, we will never be truly free.

            Put simply,
            private = free
            public = coerced

      • I somehow missed your question for discussion Tor:

        “I’m still interested in discussion; if the GDP bubbles burst (because of nature or the PTB cartel) and stop inflating, then what?”

        To address the cartel first, IMHO, there are several trigger factors that would cause the present FED-induced bubble to pop. There is no doubt that that is what we are in: the FED is buying everything, including worthless shit like CDOs, to keep the bezzle going. There was a blogger called Hypertiger who was a bit nuts (maybe a lot), but had some really interesting perspective on this. He said that it’s essentially “inflate or die,” and that either it will end with an inflationary explosion and death (supernova) over more time, or it will rapidly contract (deflation) and die the same death (black hole first). That “calling in the bad debt” will be the trigger in the latter case. This is what I’d call scenario A, and it happens if the ROTW gets together and throws out the world currency (e.g. dollar-denominated oil), replacing it with something else, like some blended market basket (as has been under discussion with RU and CH, for instance). In that case, we cease to be the nominal “center of the universe,” and we go the way of England, or, perhaps, Brazil. We become a secondary market for things we see ourselves for now as being primary. Our standard of living takes a rather large nose dive for most people, and the middle class begins to assume the appearance and odor of the lower class, something noticeable in England as much as twenty or thirty years ago. Certainly, we see the beginnings, at least, of this already around us here and now in the FUSA.

        The other way of collapsing the cartel is through instigated geopolitical chaos. IOW, war. This is how “they” did it in the first (lesser) great depression. The U.S. partnered with England against Germany in a staged conflict to institute a new divided global ranch, with Japan and most of Asia “belonging” to the U.S., and half of Europe consigned to Stalinist communism under the Marshall Plan. Arguably, FDR and Stalin were blood brothers in arms, of course, although this factoid is lost on the sheeple, mostly. This time, it appears the greater fools are, once again, here in FUSA, where TPTB carefully manage a stage show to appear to be “always at war” with some perceived threat in order to boil frogs slowly as everything they formerly possessed is slowly taken from them.

        So, this time around, I think we should expect them to continue the inflation by the global cartel up to the point where it cannot be maintained, at which point the faster, more resolute denouement must proceed, probably in form of some kind of global organization for “war,” whatever that will mean in this technological evolution. (Expect unimaginable horrors.)

        Now to the natural thesis, and you will see how the two are interrelated. If some of the fundamental precepts of Martenson’s Crash Course are validated as accurate, we have been the beneficiaries of an enormous treasure trove of “surplus energy” for the past hundred twenty odd years, in the form of the worldwide petroleum boom. This has fueled an huge run-up and potential overshoot in nearly all areas. We don’t have “pump the last barrel” of oil to hit a wall here. That’s the whole point of this theory; as the low-hanging fruit is plucked, the effort to maintain the run-up growth becomes impossible, ERoEI rules the day.

        Now, some of the positive by-products of all this surplus energy of the past century or so have been, to just name a few, the technological explosion of semiconductors and micro-processors that grew out of the oil-based “man on the moon” era. Simply put, cheap oil made possible much surplus labor for things like research in these new areas. Even before that, the exigency of WWII made possible reduction to practice of physics theories (e.g. relativity) and beginning of a nuclear age, with its attendant horrors and blessings. The point is these things all flowed from a world largely run by animal and water power, then finally steel and steam, with cheap, easily portable oil sounding last octave. Nothing really has emerged to replace oil for the things it does so well.

        Now the intersection of the cartel and nature: as I see it, what the cartel is doing is keeping the overblown system alive. It’s possible that we can manage a transition to a non-oil-based global energy economy, possibly through decentralized nuclear power (see Hyperion, for one) and its academic to make liquid fuels (synthetic gas) from available materials if you have enough energy. But the cartel doesn’t seem to be too interested in providing the world with cheap, abundant energy. I think it is interested in reducing the global population, personally, but we shall see. It’s also possible we shall see some more advanced energy from fusion or zero point, but I’m not holding my breath. Some people seem to accept as a given that such energy already exists, and is being deliberately withheld, but I’m not of a mind to go with that.

        So, to cut to the chase, if cartel or natural progression, or some combination thereof happens, we probably will see a new geopolitical solution that will kill of a billion of two people, and let TPTB set up a new “Bretton Woods,” more to their liking. Make no mistake who calls the shots. It’s a big club, and “we ain’t in it!” Best we can do is try to be so small that they don’t see us. And never believe their hype.

        • “Kill off a billion or two” – “it’s” etc.

          Sorry. Stream of consciousness posting – publish in haste, repent at leisure…

        • ” IMHO, there are several trigger factors that would cause the present FED-induced bubble to pop. ”

          Indeed. A timely article on just that.

          The US Dollar could crash at a finger snap under at least one circumstance: if the gold holdings at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (NY Fed) are revealed to be missing. An event last week made that circumstance edge a bit closer. Austria wants to audit the 150 tons of gold it stores in the UK (some sources say 280 tons.) According to Austrian Trend magazine, “there is a rising disbelief among Austrians about the existence of the gold.”

          If the bullion is not there, then a flood of audit demands could reveal empty vaults around the world. But particularly in one place. A disproportionate percentage of the world’s gold reserve is in the vault of the NY Fed. Or, at least, the physical gold is said to be there. A recent delivery of repatriated gold to Germany is reason for skepticism.

          The New York Fed.

          Remember Die Hard 3?

          McClane realizes that he and Carver are being distracted to keep them away from Wall Street; Simon is planning a heist. Returning downtown, he finds Simon’s men − disguised as cops, businessmen, construction workers, and guards − have raided the Federal Reserve Bank of New York via the damaged subway station and made off with $140 billion of gold bullion in 14 stolen dump trucks.

          That was fiction. The reality is that the USG itself made off with the gold bullion, not “Simon.” The USG is the biggest crook in the world.

          • “usg” is a sign, hanging above a door. or better, above a curtain. crookedly, to be sure, but still just signage.

          • I can’t find the article now, was on zerohedge I think. The fed is now complaining that China’s central bank isn’t playing by rules. That is they aren’t leasing the gold they have into the market, but hoarding it.

          • Also, do any of you guys know, do Any central banks buy silver? Do they hold it? Like they do with gold? I imagine they own it in some backroom kind of shady way, but do they do so out in the open?
            Does the Chinese central bank own it?
            Or, the Mexican central bank?
            Does every central bank in the world claim to own Zero silver holdings?
            And just never-mind platinum and uranium.

            … As the world churns.

          • Dear Brent, et al,

            “The fed is now complaining that China’s central bank isn’t playing by rules. That is they aren’t leasing the gold they have into the market, but hoarding it.”

            I can’t be the only one who finds that accusation utterly surreal.

            Talk about blaming the victim — for refusing to be victimized ad infinitum!

            Everyone the world over who has ever had assets in USD has been looted seven ways from Sunday since 1913 by the Fed, Treasury, and Anglo-American Banksters.

            In case anyone still doesn’t understand how, let me make it simple.

            Everyone knows how counterfeiting works, right? Instead of actually performing work for pay, a counterfeiter prints up a bunch of bills and spends them.

            What this does is indirectly steal from everyone else who actually worked for the currency in their possession. The counterfeiter’s bills dilute the value of the other bills in existence.

            So how does the Fed/Treasury/Bankster counterfeiting scam work? Exactly the same way! Except that they made their actions legal, in advance. That is the only difference. They pre-define their counterfeiting as legal, therefore it is, and they can do it in plain sight of god and man, and get away with it.

            Public ignorance about the difference between money and currency, along with Keynesian gobbledygook about “QE” makes it possible for them to get away with it.

          • @Bevin – I see a little guy in a nice suit waving a red flag with some gold stars in the upper left and saying “are you guys looking for something?:

          • Dear Gary,


            Some people, with the help of people such as G. Edward Griffen and others, have seen through the scam.

            Many gold bugs in the USSA, and interestingly enough, in the Chinese Communist Party! All of them are buying gold as fast as they can, hand over fist.

            Believe it or not, the PRC government actually runs TV ads encouraging Mainland Chinese to buy as much gold as they can.

            Can you imagine the government of the USSA doing that?

            This is a topsy turvy world we live in today. Pravda and Russia Today contain more truth than the New York Times and Fox News.

          • Bevin, I don’t trust the Chinese Central Bank any more than I trust the fed. Like the fed they are looking out for themselves, not the people of China.

            What reason are they saying people should buy gold? Like in the USA they must have to give a reason.

            There’s something about me that I can’t trust authority. Authority wants us to do what helps them. Now if I were to decide that Chinese central bank will win the battle with the fed, I’d do what the CCB is doing. But if were to bet on the fed, I’d follow the fed’s lead. They are all evil, but if I bet on gold like the CCB and the fed wins, then I’ll lose practically everything. Same the other way around.

            I like PM’s but I distrust central banks. A central bank that says sell gold is up to something. a central bank that says buy gold is up to something. And that something has nothing to do with our best interests.

          • Dear Brent,

            Whoah! Let’s not jump to conclusions.

            I’ve been posting here for several years now. My bona fides as a hardcore anarchist should be obvious.

            There are no good governments, only bad governments and worse governments.

            Sometimes however, they swap places. As I mentioned before, I used to be a Cold Warrior. I used to think that the US was on the side of the angels and would save the world from Stalinism and Maoism.

            That changed after Bush reneged on the “peace dividend” and the US led West expanded NATO.

            Now, like many at LRC, I think Russia and China are actually less evil than the USSA. That does not mean I think they are good. Goonvermin is goonvermin. The Chinese goonvermin for example, both on the Mainland and on Taiwan, will not allow me to keep and bear arms. I find that intolerable.
            But to return to my original point.

            What the PRC goonvermin is doing now is attempting to become more powerful than the US goonvermin, through real money policy. It recognizes that gold is real money but FRNs are mere paper.

            It realizes that gold can help it become wealthier and more powerful than the US goonvermin.

            Its motive is not to empower the ordinary Chinese citizen. Its motive is to empower the PRC goonvermin.

            But if ordinary Chinese citizens can profit as an unintended side effect, why the hell not?

          • Bevin, I wasn’t questioning your background.

            I just don’t think any central bank is up to any good, and the fed has been at this evil a lot longer than Chinese communists. The fed may crash gold even further just out of spite. The fed may now be run by over confident morons and be utterly outmaneuvered by the Chinese. I don’t know. Or is all staged with both central banks being tools of the same people?

          • Dear Boothe,

            OK. I hear you. I agree.

            Yes. As many of us have reiterated, goonvermin can never really be good, even when it actually does something certifiably good.

            The AutoBahn is good as far as roads go. But as we have been telling clover to zero effect, the goonvermin built it by robbing citizens to pay for it.

            Therefore all goonvermin actions are tainted. Sort of a “fruit of the poisoned tree” doctrine, applied in a different context.

            Also, as PM guru Michael Maloney correctly notes, the Russian ruble and Chinese yuan are also fiat currencies. They too are due for a day of reckoning.

            The PRC government is doing some things right. Allowing and even encouraging private citizens to own gold is not a bad thing. How can it be?

            But that does not make it or any other government “good.” Merely “less bad.”

        • no matter how it goes, even if stays “just like this” (leon, the professional), your last two sentences are bare metal truth.

  9. Yeah………Wizard of OZ…….written by the same maniac who as a ‘journalist’ applauded the Sand Creek Massacre.

    • Right MFW. No valid argument? Then back up and resort to argumentum ad hominem. I don’t know about everyone else here, but I’m really impressed. If you will recall, the Sand Creek Massacre was carried out by your beloved government under the compassionate guidance of none other than old dis-Honest Abe himself. Did you forget about the Bear River Massacre in 1863 a little over a year prior? You might want to brush up on your history a little better and bring up the devastation wrought on Georgia and the Shenandoah Valley, also by government forces serving under the first “Republican” president. Let’s not forget about Mr. Lincolns inflated “greenbacks” used to finance that little exercise in murder, mayhem and the destruction of the republic while we’re reminiscing. I think I’ll engage in a little ad hominem, since turnabout is fair play: It doesn’t surprise me that you’re from the “free soil” state (one of the earlier contingents of the FSA). You Jayhawkers are [still] pathetic! Where’s Bill Quantrill when you need him…

      • Dear Boothe,

        Well said. Thanks.

        I cited a specific point made by an individual on a specific topic.

        That hardly constitutes a blanket endorsement of everything that individual might have ever said or done over his entire life.

        You of course understood this. Anyone able to reason would.

        MIW however cannot or will not discern the difference. What’s worse, MIW thinks that merely because he is unable to unwilling to discern the difference, others will be the same way.

        Now that is sad.

  10. Don’t quite know what Eric’s problem is with oil changes. I can get a change done at a dozen places with 5 miles of my home for $20 or less.

    As to inflation…….YES we have had some. M2 has grown from $290B in 1959 to $11290B currently. That is a rate of just under 7%/yr. Funny thing is the rate was higher from 1959 until the early ’70’s when the USA went off the Gold Standard. General Price inflation has been less- averaging around 3.9%/yr. Either way the average person has not suffered. In ’82 & ’83 I built a ‘rainy day’ fund of around $5K. That stash with very conservative saving rather than investing has grown to $35K with no further inputs. $35K current buys a LOT more than my $5K in 1983.

    Even gold or silver are by definition subject to monetary inflation IF the amount of coin in circulation increases. Ask the Spaniards of the 1500’s. Money supply NEEDS to grow along with population and economic activity. Think you don’t like inflation? Try deflation as a font of misery.

    Had you folks gotten your wish for a pure hard money economy its likely that today the USA as a whole would resemble 1930’s Mississippi politically/socially/economically. Maybe that is YOUR ideal, its not mine.

      • They might exist ($20 oil change). But rest assured – they’re using the cheapest/lowest quality oil and the cheapest/lowest quality filter, too.

        • Indeed. I don’t feel safe going to any of these shops.

          $24.99 seems to be the price I see most often now, but their habits/tactics haven’t changed. At least it comes with a 12 point inspection, that way I can buy their $60 air filter. 😛

          • Let’s see an example, Mike. Not an advertisement. An actual receipt for an actual $20 oil change. Ever notice the little asterisk that accompanies most (all?) of those “$19.99 oil change” ads? You will usually discover weasel words, in real small type: “as low as” $19.99 “for certain models“… which is probably not your model. The “$19.99” figure, you discover, only applies to old Beetles with a 3 quart capacity and screen-type oil filtration.

            And, keep in mind:

            One, these places “fish” for suckers by advertising the low-cost oil change, then shake them down for other “services” they’ll explain are desperately necessary for the car to be “safe to drive.” You may not fall for such, but lot of people do. Enough that they make up for the “low cost” oil change many times over.

            Two, what kind of troglodyte do you suppose is doing the wrench (air gun) turning at these quick-lube joints? Why do you suppose they can offer “19.99” oil changes?

            I’d rather toss a Ritalin-fueled teen the keys to my Trans-Am than let the aforesaid troglodyte screw with my car’s oiling system (or anything else).

        • It’s the duty of someone making a claim to provide evidence and support it. You say there are a dozen, but you can’t even name one?
          Exactly. You can’t get your oil changed with just a 20 dollar bill today.

          • Actually I’ve seen coupons from dealers offering oil changes for as low as $10. It’s obviously a loss-leader to get cars into the service department in the hopes of finding that expensive repairs are needed. I shudder to think of the quality of the oil and filters that are probably being used.

    • Mike,

      The “prosperity” you defend is false prosperity – built on debt and credit. The Hamiltonian system. Speculation, flim-flams. Long (and short) cons.

      So, yes. I’d rather live on a pay-as-you-go basis, even if it meant less superficial affluence.

      What Hamilton and his federalists sought – and got – is a system in which “connected” people (like him) make huge fortunes riding the government/big business gravy train.

      • somebody else just broadbrush onus’d “speculation”, too.

        robert murphy as various pieces, “the social function of _________”, filling the blank with, futures markets, put & call options, stock speculators, credit-default swaps (philipp bagus, this one)….

        the gov wielders are not “speculators”. they are anti-competitive, which means anti-speculative. old boy networks, back rooms, insider front-running, anything that’s a “lock”, or nearly so, is not speculation.

        life is inherently speculative, a serial speculation. but the gov-wielders, predators, increase the speculative component of daily life at the expense of ordinary people…that’s the reason for ordinary people, as far as they’re concerned.

        ordinary people options:

        if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.
        if you can’t beat ’em or join ’em, fight ’em anyway.
        if you can’t beat ’em or join ’em, galt ’em.


        return on reality may not seem spectacular…but it can wring out some of that excess speculation, the junk that is externalized to “the commons”. volatility of returns is an important metric. low, slow & steady is good. low, slow & steady dilution(inflation) in between black swan events is not good (unless, possibly, you’ve got a taleb touch…).

      • “The “prosperity” you defend is false prosperity – built on debt and credit. ”

        No Eric, the prosperity is quite real. The houses, cars, farms, consumer goods, jet fighters and tanks all very much exist. That the labor to build then was denominated in fiat dollars rather than grains of gold is neutral at worst. More likely the fiat currency produces a prosperity much superior to the entire Country indulging your gold fetish.

        • Credit out of thin air and money printing pull from the future to use today.

          Eventually a crash results because the future arrives.

        • Except it isn’t, Mike. By definition. I’ll explain.

          The “money” we are forced to use is a debt instrument. Its value is constantly manipulated such that it is constantly decreasing. To compensate, the entity that manipulates this “money” uses a trick called “low interest rates” to egg on consumption on credit (debt), which is to say: spending what you don’t have.

          All these fancy new cars? All the “safety” shit I rant about? If people had to pay for it – as opposed to finance it – most could not and therefore, they (your friends in government) would be unable to mandate them. Car companies would build cars that people could afford to buy – as opposed to cars they can “finance.”

          Why do you suppose it is, Mike, that most people do not own their homes? Or even their cars, for that matter? Yes the homes they live in are larger/nicer (and the cars are fancier) than they would be if we had a pay-as-you-go economic system. But people would not be debt slaves.

          And prosperity would be real.

          • “All these fancy new cars? All the “safety” shit I rant about? If people had to pay for it – as opposed to finance it – most could not ”

            Sooooo, it slips out that the ‘debt’ economy actually produces superior goods. Thanks Eric!!!!

            BTW- no one has to be in debt. That’s a Choice & I thought you were all about free choice? Personally, I own both Home and Car(s) outright. Paid cash for the most recent car just last week. This is something ANYONE can do if they want to. Perhaps a few folks here would be better off listening to oh say David Ramsey or Suze Orman rather than your rants. Likely they would be better served.

            • Give me unlimited funds – other people’s funds – and I, too, could produce “superior goods.” For awhile. But that’s not the issue at hand, Mike.

              The issue is: Who pays for them? Or rather, can they pay for them?

              To a great extent, the answer is – no. They can’t. It is necessary for most people to go into debt to “own” the “superior goods” you tout.

              Scale it up:

              America has this bristling to the teeth “defense” system – aircraft carrier groups, F-22 raptors, scores of bases all over the world. It is only feasible via the artifice of debt on an epic scale.

              And debt is slavery, Mike.

          • MikeFromWichita – I too have paid off two homes, bought all my cars since 1985 outright and only use credit as a convenience. It requires self discipline. But I have also positioned myself through education and job experience to be able to do this. I didn’t need a radio talk show host to show me the fallacy of the debt based so-called “American Dream”, I have common sense. But you and I are the exception rather than the rule. All those folks that lost their “dream” homes in 2008 during the latest phase of the Fed induced boom-bust cycle sure felt the pain of easy credit and predatory lending practices.

            Precious metals based real money, or specie if you preffer, prevents much of this from ever happening because it is virtually impossible to inflate (i.e. steal the value from it by printing more of it). That’s why the Constitution spells it out; No state shall make any thing other than gold or silver money. That’s the law Mike. Failing to follow it, flawed as you may consider it to be, has led us into this economic quagmire. You’re all about law & order until is comes down to the most basic features of the Supreme Law of the Land, huh? Gotta have speed limits, gotta follow the rules…gotta throw out that “G-D piece of paper” (i.e. the Constitution & Bill of Rights) when it interferes with your worldview. Isn’t it nice to be soooo much smarter than the likes of Madison and Jefferson?

            It’s all good, because MikeFromWichita “got his” under this present corrupt system of debt and taxation; screw everybody else. Right Mike? Once enough people accept a bad thing, it may become the norm, but that still doesn’t make it right. And when they come for your private investments, your 401K, your IRA and tax you on the imputed rental value of your paid off house (all things that have been proposed by the regime), what then?

          • Indeed Boothe, screw everyone else.

            All this loose credit and people who like being debt slaves and don’t save…. instead they bid up things which screws over people who don’t want to be debt slaves. It’s ok to be a debt slave if that’s what they want, but the money printing that leads to these low interest rates which breaks the feedback loop. Interest rates determined by savings limits what those who want to be debt slaves can do to bid stuff (like houses, property, etc) up.

            Yes Mike, anyone can pay cash for a car if they are disciplined. But houses are really subject to the bidders. Bidders who go by ‘payment’ instead of cost.

          • “Give me unlimited funds – other people’s funds – and I, too, could produce “superior goods.” For awhile. But that’s not the issue at hand, Mike.
            “The issue is: Who pays for them? Or rather, can they pay for them? ”

            You mean like ONE of MANY of Uncle Sam’s buy on unlimited credit items, the F-35 airplane?

            Lt. Col. David Berke says there’s no comparison between the F-35 and today’s jet fighters.

            David Berke: I’m telling you, having flown those other airplanes it’s not even close at how good this airplane is and what this airplane will do for us.

            David Martin: We have planes that are as fast as this.

            David Berke: You bet.

            David Martin: And can maneuver just as sharply as this one.

            David Berke: Sure.

            David Martin: So why isn’t that good enough?

            David Berke: Those are metrics of a bygone era. Those are ways to validate or value an airplane that just don’t apply anymore.

            Today’s enemies, al Qaeda and the Taliban, pose no threat to American jets. But Welsh is worried about more powerful rivals.

            Mark Welsh: We’re not the only ones who understand that going to this next generation of capability in a fighter aircraft is critical to survive in the future of battle space and so others are going, notably now the Chinese, the Russians, and we’ll see more of that in the future.

            And this is what the competition looks like — the Russian T-50 and China’s J-20 Stealth Fighter. According to Welsh, they are more than a match for today’s fighters.

            Mark Welsh: If you take any older fighter like our existing aircraft and you put it nose to nose in, in a contested environment with a newer fighter, it will die.

            David Martin: And it will die because?

            Mark Welsh: It will die before it even knows it’s even in a fight.

            In aerial combat, the plane that shoots first wins, so it all comes down to detecting the enemy before he detects you. The F-35’s combination of information technology and stealth would give American pilots what Marine Lt. Gen. Robert Schmidle describes as an astounding advantage in combat.

            Robert Schmidle: I shouldn’t get into the exact ranges because those ranges are classified, but what I can tell you is that the range at which you can detect the enemy as opposed to when he can detect you can be as much as 10 times further when you’ll see him before he’ll ever see you and down to five times…

            David Martin: I want to nail that down here. If the F-35 was going up against another stealth aircraft of the kind that other countries are working on today, it would be able still to detect that aircraft at five to 10 times the range?

            Robert Schmidle: You would be safe in assuming that you could detect that airplane at considerably longer distances than that airplane could detect you.

            The F-35’s radars, cameras and antennas would scan for 360 degrees around the plane searching for threats and projecting, for example, the altitude and speed of an enemy aircraft, onto the visor of a helmet custom-fitted to each pilot’s head.

            It is so top-secret no one without a security clearance has ever been allowed to see what it can do…

            [Alan Norman: If you want to head up to my office, come on up.]

            …until Lockheed Martin’s chief F-35 test pilot Alan Norman took us into the cockpit for a first-hand look.

            Alan Norman: So, if you put that over your face . . .

            That blindfold is to make sure I can see only what cameras located in different parts of the plane project onto the visor.

            Alan Norman: You’re looking through the eyeballs of airplane right now. And you can even look down below the airplane. So you’re looking actually through the structure of the airplane right now.

            We’ve positioned 60 Minutes cameraman Tom Rapier underneath the plane so we can test the system.

            David Martin: So now I look and there’s Tom Rapier and he’s giving me one finger up.

            Alan Norman: You’re the only person in the world that can see him with that imagery right now.

            We’re not allowed to show you what’s on the visor because much of it is still classified. But wherever I turn my head, I can see what’s out there.

            Chris Bogdan: So there’s a lot riding on that helmet, David, there’s no doubt.

            David Martin: How much does it cost?

            Chris Bogdan: The helmet itself plus the computer system that is used to make the helmet work is more than a half million dollars.

            But there have been problems with the helmet and when we visited the Marine Corps station in Yuma, Ariz., a malfunction caused a scheduled flight to be scrubbed.

            In fact, on any given day more than half the F-35s on the flight line are liable to be down for maintenance or repairs.

            Bugs and glitches in the plane first reveal themselves in testing at Edwards Air Force Base in California where every test flight is monitored and recorded as if it were a space flight.

            The plane has to go through 56,000 separate tests — everything from making sure a bomb will fall out of the bomb bay to seeing what happens when it is dropped at supersonic speeds.

            [Rod Cregier: Of course you never like to lose an aircraft.]

            Col. Rod Cregier runs the test program.

            Rod Cregier: You’re taking an aircraft that’s unknown and you’re trying to determine does it do what we paid the contractor to make it do. Does it go to the altitudes, the air speeds? Can it drop the right weapons? We’re trying to get all that stuff done before we release it for the war fighter, so that they can actually use it in combat.

            David Martin: So are you basically the guy who has to deliver the bad news about the plane?

            Rod Cregier: Sometimes it’s hard to tell folks that their baby is ugly, but you have to do it because if you don’t get it done, who else is gonna do it?

            A number of surprisingly basic defects have been uncovered. The F-35 was restricted from flying at night because the wingtip lights, shaped to preserve the plane’s stealth contours, did not meet FAA standards.

            Chris Bogdan: When you hear something like that, you just kind of want to hit your head like this and go: “Multibillion dollar airplane? Wingtip lights? Come on!

            And then there are the tires, which have to be tough enough to withstand a conventional landing and bouncy enough to handle a vertical landing.

            David Martin: We found out that the tires were wearing out two, three, four times faster than expected. Tires.

            Chris Bogdan: Tires aren’t rocket science. We ought to be able to figure out how to do tires on a multibillion dollar highly advanced fighter.

            Lt. Gen. Schmidle remembers the day one of the planes delivered to the Marines had gaps in its stealth coating.

            Robert Schmidle: They sent me the pictures within half an hour of the thing landing and I then sent them on to Lockheed Martin and said, “So talk to me.”

            David Martin: I got a feeling you said more than just “talk to me.”

            Robert Schmidle: Um, (laugh).

            David Martin: Did you say, “What the hell?”

            Robert Schmidle: You know Marines tend to be relatively direct in the way that we try to help people understand what our, what our particular concerns are.

            Executives at Lockheed Martin declined our request for an interview and instead sent us this email saying, in part: “We recognize the program has had developmental and cost challenges and we are working with our customers, partners and suppliers to address these challenges.”

            That stealth coating was repaired and the problem with the wingtip lights fixed but, so far, not the tires. With about 35 planes a year coming off the Lockheed Martin assembly line, it seems awfully late to be discovering such basic flaws. That’s because early in the program the Pentagon counted on computer modeling and simulators to take the place of old-fashioned flight testing.

            Frank Kendall: An old adage in the, in this business is, “You should fly before you buy.” Make sure the design is stable and things work before you actually go into production.

            Frank Kendall is the under secretary of Defense for Acquisition – the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer.

            Frank Kendall: We started buying airplanes a good year before we started flight tests.

            David Martin: So you buy before you fly?

            Frank Kendall: In that case yes.

            David Martin: Just saying, it doesn’t sound like a good idea.

            Frank Kendall: I referred to that decision as acquisition malpractice.

            This May 2010 Pentagon memo detailed the “flawed…assumptions,” “unrealistic…estimates” and “a general reluctance to accept unfavorable information” that put the program seven years behind schedule and more than $160 billion over budget. To stop the bleeding, Kendall pumped an extra $4.6 billion into flight testing and froze production.

            Frank Kendall: We need to face the truth in this business. We need to understand what works and what doesn’t.

            David Martin: Is this F-35 program now under control?

            Frank Kendall: Yes, it is.

            Shortly after he spoke with us, Kendall issued this memo stating “progress is sufficient” to increase production next year. But, he warned, the plane’s software “is behind schedule” and “reliability…is not growing at an acceptable rate.”

            Still, the Pentagon plans to buy as many as 100 F-35s a year by 2018.

            David Martin: Has the F-35 program passed the point of no return?

            Chris Bogdan: I don’t see any scenario where we’re walking back away from this program.

            David Martin: So the American taxpayer is going to buy this airplane?

            Chris Bogdan: I would tell you we’re going to buy a lot of these airplanes.

            Since our story first aired in February, the Air Force and Navy have been forced by budget cuts to slow the rate at which they are buying new F-35s. But there is no change in the Pentagon’s plan to eventually purchase a total of 2,443 aircraft at a cost of nearly $400 billion.

    • Mike from Wichita is not living in Kansas.

      He is living in the fantastical Land of Oz.

      Nothing anyone can say will convince him otherwise.

      But anyone willing to take a hard look at the facts can clearly see the truth.

      For a rebuttal of MIW economic nonsense, watch this video and the other four videos that make up this five part video series on the difference between money and currency.

      Also, see:

      Money and politics in the land of Oz
      The extraordinary story behind the extraordinary story of “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”

      • “convince him otherwise”

        check your motivation. cuz convincement is just as ozzy as the rest of the baum story.

        good ol’ galileo: you can’t teach a man anything, you can only help him find it within himself. only if it’s there to begin with, of course. “all is one” is not commutative to one is all, right? no matter how much soaring egal(itarian)s protest. “convince” seamlessly substitutes for “teach”.

        when the pupil is ready, the teacher will appear. which assumes both “pupil” & the possibility of “readiness”. aj nock, a splendid writer, spent a good deal of time on education & educability. suffice here to counter with ‘when the pupa is ready, the insect-eater will swoop in.’ & maybe ‘fools rush in where anglers cast their lines’? ☻

        the road to serfdom & the yellowbrick road have much in common. head injuries, for example.

      • Also, notice how MIW used the irrelevancy about Oz to evade the real point about the difference between currency and money?

        Notice how he never responded to it, let alone rebut it?

        He knows he can’t rebut it. He knows that the way the Treasury, Federal Reserve System, and the Banksters legally exploit fractional reserve lending using currency instead of money, equals legalized counterfeiting and the parasitic sucking up of our purchasing power.

        Will he return to confront this undeniable reality?

        Of course not! Why do you think he ducked it in the first place by talking about an Indian massacre instead of monetary policy?

        • Yes, Bevin. I noticed, and thought the same danged thing.

          I imagine that’s the type of guy who would/could fall in-line with the thinking of cop-loving FerFal, a kind of minimizing, ‘head-in-the-sand’ outlook on things?:

          4 Things Doom-and-Gloomers got Totally Wrong

          “Lots of things can happen eventually. Is it likely? Nope. …”

          I guess those two have no idea how well the Cloward Piven Strategy is working, or even wHAt it is?

          ‘The Cloward Piven Strategy Says: YES!’

          I saw a figure supposedly put out by the Border Patrol in the unitedstate. They said, usually there’s 6,500 illegals crossing the border every month. Nowadays, it’s 65,000 per month. The illegals all heard Obombya is giving amnesty, it’s as if America is some kind of Elysium?
          I have no problem with free range people, but this fits in with The Cloward Piven Strategy.

          Anyway, MIW seems to be a lot like this other guy, too, in thinking the ‘Rule of Law’ is in place now and it’s a good idea to befriend cops:

          Warning: Do You Recognize these Five Common Piles of Prepper BS

          The author writes:

          “It’s also a good idea to be friends with your local Sheriff and as many of his deputies as possible…”

          When I read that, I thought of this statement from a Sheriff and how it relates to the average person:

          “I stand behind what our team did,”

          ‘A Country Where Police Burn Infants in Their Cribs’

          And people pretend like there’s a so-called ‘Rule of Law’ right now?
          Is that what pharmaceuticals do to people? They think: ‘what is not, and what never was, and what can never be’? They’ve been turned into some kind of demented Oompa Loompas’ ready to swallow any kind of ideal so long as it’s about Free Money and they don’t have to think about how their prosperity is due to the theft from others, or how the the state is made up of thugs who kill with impunity, and they help to fund it all?

          Ah, what was that line about how democracy is the idea that The People know what they want, and they deserve to get it good and hard?

          ….Just wish I didn’t have to go along for the ride.

          Onward! Christian soldiers:

          Christians Love the Warfare State …Which kills other Christians

          It’s as though ‘The People’ have No idea about, ‘The Hunger Games and Christian Nonviolence’?

          …But I digress. But what’s it matter?
          I’m trying to imagine dom walking into a cop shop to report a theft or damage… crrazy. There’s No Way i could do that. I think I’d let it All slide.
          Don’t your insurance premiums go Up if you make a claim and you pay double as a result?
          Better to live and learn?

          • Dear Helot,

            MIW stayed in the closet for quite some time. He passed for libertarian.

            For whatever reason he recently decided to come out.

            Must have been pretty painful having to repress all those feeling all that time.

          • Ha! funny, Bevin.

            Your description of MIW caused me to look up this:

            Definition of QUEER
            a : worthless, counterfeit
            b : questionable, suspicious

            Yeah. That about sums it up.

      • “………the difference between money and currency.

        Also, see: …….”

        Bevin, old sot: I did in fact consume 30 or so minutes of my time to watch that video BUT SERIOUSLY this attempt to sell precious metals as an investment (why if fiat currency is worthless and precious metal is the ONLY real Money/Store of Value do these folks make a Business of selling their Money for worthless paper currency) is just a rehash of what was available in paperback book form well before my introduction to gold buggery 35 years. Not a thing has changed.

        As the spiel does have some elements of truth (yeppers, the best possible Investment is in useful skills- as many as you can) it seems plausible at initial exposure much as ‘Limits to Growth’ and ‘Population Bomb’ had a few years earlier until my own introduction to mainframe programming and access to computers allowed me to spot the lies. Indeed, at that time in 1979 using fiat currency (obtained from very low interest student loans) to buy silver seemed like a great idea with no downside. By pure dumb luck I sold a portion of my stash BEFORE the price of silver tanked sufficient to repay the fiat currency and keep the remainder of the silver as a free gain. After that it was a major mistake to retain that silver. Today its nominal value in dollars is maybe twice what it was in ’79. Gold would come in at a little under 3X. The S&P however is a robust 15X and hence by far the better investment.

        True that 5000 years ago the royalty of Egypt valued gold, but so what. Up until VERY recently most ordinary people have been completely outside the money economy. BUT……… is an outright lie to claim that gold and/or silver is a great store of value because the supply does not increase. Supply has doubled in the past 50 years. Nor has the value of gold been all that steady over the centuries. Back in Adam Smith’s time it was possible (and routinely done) to trade gold for silver in Europe ship the silver to China, trade for gold and return to Europe with a tidy profit in gold. Precious metal supplies can inflate so quickly as to ruin a country. Consider Spain a few generations before Smith’s time. They thought their looted gold/silver were wealth. Turned out that REAL wealth was the ability of England & the Netherlands to produce and innovate.

        I still see no reason to believe that had your sort had their way this past century that the 1% would not control this Land even more firmly than today and with most ordinary folks living on a par with a 1930’s Mississippi ‘cropper.

        • Dear MIW,

          Your response can be explained one of two ways.

          1. You actually believe the gobbledygook you wrote.

          2. You know better, but hope to tap dance out of an indefensible position out of stubborn pride.

          Either alternative is pretty unflattering as far as you are concerned.

          Reality Check: Arguing against real money and for fiat currency is a fools errand. Real money is real money because people value it. It never become totally worthless. Fiat currency always becomes totally worthless. Historians who have researched fiat currency have learned an interesting fact. Every fiat currency in recorded history has always gone to zero, and become absolutely worthless. Not a single fiat currency from any country in the world has every not reverted what it really is, merely scraps of paper.

          Fiat currency is also known as “legal tender.” As financial historian G. Edward Griffen noted, “The only way to make people accept such a worthless currency is by government force. That’s what legal-tender laws are all about. ”

          Goonvermin force is the only thing preventing fiat currency/legal tender from reverting to its true value, zero.

        • You sold your silver stash? What a crock of shit!

          Possibility 1: Clovers are all expert or lucky investors.
          Possibility 2: Clovers are all pathetic lying weasels who go to great lengths to make their idiocy seem palatable by fabricating accomplishments and achievements.

          I must concede one thing. You sure can stomach a lot of hate and loathing. If you’re doing so well, then why on earth do you choose to “invest your time” with people who despise you and your lurid tales of joyful surrender to endless buggery by the faceless thugs of state?

          All I can think of is you are willing to play the masochist punching bag so long as your sadist side is fed second hand by hearing others recount their tales of abuse at the hands of the state.

          So accustomed to abuse and failure, you seek self-esteem among enemies who time and again refute you and expose you for the complete moron and bloodthirsty cannibal you truly are.

        • MikeFromWichita – Precious metals, or more particularly gold and silver, are real money, not investments (platinum group metals, although rare and industrially valuable haven’t traditionally been used as a universal medium of exchange, so I exclude them from being “money”). Why gold and silver? They are scarce (unlike tree leaves or printed pieces of paper), they have intrinsic value (they can be used for ornamentation, dental prostheses, electrical & electronic devices, medications, lubricants, catalysts, etc.), they are portable (granted, so are FRNs & Zimbabwe notes…), they are a uniform measure of value (the value of 1/10 oz. of gold is 1/10 oz. of gold, that does not change, only the number of pieces of worthless paper required to acquire it changes) and private PM transactions tend to stay private (which is why the gun-varmints and their bankster owners despise gold and silver…for us, the unwashed masses that is. They still continue to amass it).

          Physical gold and silver are not an investment Mike, they are a way to store or “save” the value of your labor or profit for the future that we know will never go to zero value like fiat currency does. In all fairness, Zimbabwe money from 2008 isn’t completely worthless; I bought 160 Trillion 2008 Zim dollars in mint condition for less than 10 FRN including shipping. And a well worn $100 Confederate note sold recently at the local coin shop for $100 FRN. So ask yourself if that means the worthless Confederate note has regained value or if the FRN has lost practically all of its value?

          Investments typically return dividends, have the potential for capital gains or bear interest. Gold and silver “values” fluctuate in a fiat currency / credit based economy; just like houses, collectibles, artwork or any other commodity, gold and silver are not guaranteed to increase in value, just merely to hold some measure of value over the life of the owner. Paper money does typically do this. If you put 10,000 FRN away in a safe in 1986 and you put the equivalent value in gold and silver eagles along side it in a safe, which one would be “worth more” (i.e. have more purchasing power) today? The short answer is it would take $215.51 paper FRNs to buy what $100 in paper FRNs would purchase in 1986 (the first year gold eagles were issued). I can understand that you might be skeptical of facts provided by a “stupid idiot” and a “libertarian anarchist”, so here’s where you can get it right from the horse’s mouth: (use the bankster’s own inflation calculator to the right of the page and see for yourself).

          So in the short time We The People have been allowed to own gold again, the value of our “money” has been cut by slightly less than half, whether you choose to accept that fact or not is irrelevant. But if you had put up U.S. gold eagles, even with a $20 premium on each coin (making their cost $464.00 each versus $438.00 spot price in Sept. 1986), you would be sitting on 21.5 troy ounces of gold. At today’s purchase price of $1283.40 each, Apmex ( would buy those gold eagles from you for a meager $27,593.10. I’d say gold did a pretty good job of holding its value, wouldn’t you? Now with a $5.47 average silver spot price for 1986 and a $6.50 purchase price (you have to pay for the value added by coining the PM) you would have put away 1538 troy ounces of silver (heavy and bulky, but manageable nonetheless). With an Apmex buy price of $20.96 today, that would only net you $32,236.48. Hmmm. Silver outperformed gold it would seem. Yeah getting rid of it was really smart, huh?

          These are facts Mike, straight from the free market. Since their introduction in 1986, gold and silver eagles beat inflation because they are a unique commodity prized the world over for their usefulness in exchange. They are real money or specie because they are a physical store of value recognized everywhere. I encountered a lowly convenience store clerk recently who was more than happy to put his own $1 FRN note in the till and pocket the 1898 Morgan dollar he displayed to me that some bottom feeder used to pay for a pack of cigarettes. He might have been a bit slow compared to your great wisdom and extensive education, but he sure knew the difference between trash and treasure. When the U.S. dollar finishes collapsing (since the Fed’s own calculator shows a total devaluation of 95.82% for the U.S. dollar since the Fed’s unholy birth in 1913, I’d say we’re almost done), those gold and silver eagles will yet retain some value if for nothing more than earrings and spoons. But those mountains of worthless Federal Reserve Notes will still have too much ink to burn well and be too rough to wipe with. Honestly now Mike, which would you rather have?

          • “(the value of 1/10 oz. of gold is 1/10 oz. of gold, that does not change, only the number of pieces of worthless paper required to acquire it changes)”

            it can change. that was the point of the spanish inflation example. & the arbitrage example.

            but…the point is the difference between exist & persist.

            dynamics of pm’s prices/values/purchasing power “dislocations” in a free market (as theoretical as such a thing is) vs dynamics of fiat.

            first exists, temporarily, which is to say briefly, until the exogenous mech corrects. fiat, otoh, persists until endogenous counterfeiters have diluted $ to homeopathic ppm levels – & poof! followed by the next hatrabbit….

          • Ozy I stand corrected. I figured I’d try to keep it simple. Although silver has historically caused more than one economic upset, even in this country (e.g. the Coinage Act of 1873), I would argue that as a general rule more people overall are far better off in an honest PM based “real money” economy than they ever ever are with fiat “hatrabbit” currency. But that’s not what the PTB want is it?

          • simple’s good. have to, & do, remind myself of kiss on a regular basis (& then forget, again). just wanted to address that bit of contrapuntal ploy out of wichita, put it in context, lest it serve as something to hang that hatrabbit on.

            no (false)quarter(notes)…not even a cupronickel one. ☻

  11. I experience the super extreme price of oil for tiny amounts every time I buy 2 cycle oil that costs about the same as a gallon of gas for a 13 oz bottle for the generator that I run nightly to recharg the battery for my home. I buy the absolute cheapest 2 cycle engine oil local by buying 6 packs of the larger bottles. I do not have a reciept handy, but I remember that each bottle cost more than $3. Less just round the price off at $3 even. I can’t quickly find out how much a gallon of 2 stroke oil weighs, but a gallon of gas weighs 128 ounces. If the oil and the gas weigh the same, then one gallon of oil will fill 9.85 bottles of 2 cycle oil, which means that I am paying $29.54 per gallon of non-synthetic 2 cycle oil. Remember that this is a very low ball figure.

    • Sorry about the above typos.
      I also should have also included information about the amount of 2 cycle oil that I actually use per 5+ gallon container.
      My newest generator and chainsaws use a 50:1 gas/oil mixture. 1 bottle of the oil that I buy treats 5 gallons of gas. Since that small bottle of oil costs about the same as a gallon of gas: That means that I am paying the price for 6 gallons of gas while only getting slightly over 5 gallons of petroleum; a nearly 20% added cost. My old chainsaw used more than double the amount of oil, which means that I would have been paying the price of more than 7 gallons of gas for just over 5 gallons.

      • No worries, Brian!

        This – inflation – is pinching us all, and almost everywhere we turn.

        I estimate the cost of food – what we pay – has increased by at least 25 percent over the past five years. Part of this has been cleverly hidden by keeping the price the same (or raising it only slightly) while at the same time reducing the quantity of what you get.

        I used the Cadbury Creme Egg to make this point in an earlier article. But it’s pretty much across the board. It is physically about two-thirds the size it used to be. The price is the same.

        Or, they give you the same size container. But there’s less inside the container.

        How long can it go on?

        Most people haven’t seen an increase in their purchasing power sufficient to keep pace. According to the available data, most people’s real purchasing power has either remained flat or declined since the late 1960s.

        It can’t go on indefinitely.

        They have hidden it very effectively for many years, via artifices such as loose credit and low interest rates. But the whole thing’s a Potemkin Village.

  12. Do not underestimate the effect of speculation and government manipulation on commodities prices. If the blather about fracking, new technology, and new fields is true, crude oil should have crashed to its late–1980s level of about $10/barrel, with gasoline well under $2/gallon at the pump. Crude is instead near record highs, staying around $100/barrel.

    By the same token, beef has shot up because of purported “shortages”, chicken has dramatically increased over the last 15 years, and now pork is supposed to increase in price because of a virus that is killing many piglets. A battle over price supports in Congress was supposed to raise a gallon of milk to $8+. Yet farmers seem to be getting little more for their efforts than before. The answer to this conundrum is in part because the powers that be in D.C. have decided to pursue policies to raise food costs for Joe Blow (us) because we’re all obese and eat too much cheap food. That and massive profitmaking by middlemen.

    Look to various manipulations as the true source for price increases exceeding inflation. In other words, follow the money.

  13. It is a vicious hamster wheel and Obummercare is another attempt to keep you in the system- making it ever harder to be your own self employed man. I am sorry it took me so long but I highly recommend it to everyone.

    And it allows something everyone commenting above has nibbled at the edges of- the only investment you can trust is in yourself.

    Whatever you don’t need to live, put it back into your valuable business, and keep whatever liquid reserves in fungible real goods like precious metals, fuels, oils, tools of every kind.

    Buy the cheapest properties you can. Keep up the appearances of being always on the edge of bankruptcy- keep a fleet of ratty old cars (have fun with them of course!) Keep the visible part of the structures in the minimum state of repair- keeps the tax collectors from coveting too much. We live in a totalitarian police state. never be foolish enough to attack them head on. Say yes sir to the boys in jackboots (remembering to spell it C-U-R in your soul).

    • Nock, there is a lot of confusion about the cost of gasoline in the U.S. as compared with the “good old days” (when you could still buy leaded gas.) This is possible because the official measures of inflation are usually based upon some kind of “market basket” that is heavily manipulated by the compilers, as well as manufacturers, who routinely downsize containers to help the charade/fraud along.

      Here’s an interesting way to look at it: build your own market basket, based on actual experience of prices then and now (yes, I’m an old guy.) The years are 1969 and 2014 (45 year gap). They are for my area of SW VA, which is way below most national areas, but we’re comparing apples to apples here.

      (Item — Then — Now)

      Corvette Auto – 6000 – 50000

      Cheeze Whiz – .95 – 4.25

      3K ft suburban home – 50,000 – 295000 (my Mom’s home/equivalent here)

      Min. Wage – 1.65 – 7.25

      Gallon of milk – .50 – 3.00

      First Class Stamp – .06 – .49

      Color TV – (25″ RCA console) 575 – 250 (32 inch LCD)

      Honeywell Kitchen Computer – 10,000 Macbook Air 1150

      Gallon reg. gas – .34 – 3.40


      Just a short list of actual examples personally experienced. It’s easy to see how an “analyst” only needs to add one “high-tech” item to the market basket to offset many more common items (including food and gas) and MISrepresent the actual inflation rate. This is a simple example of how .gov lies to us constantly. (Lies, damned lies, and statistics.)

      The reality of it is that most necessities cost five or six times what they did 45 years ago. That’s food, housing, an automobile (maybe not a corvette!). Things like postage are higher, arguably because of the fact .gov controls the rate, and has built-in protection for wages and pensions that the civilian sector finds harder to ensure.

      But the big outliers are in high-tech crap you don’t really have to have (or certainly don’t need to buy as often), such as TVs and computers/related. The other outlier is gas, folks. Yes, it now costs ten times what it did 45 years ago. I was there and have bought gas throughout those decades. We are probably even close to a low point for future gas prices as well, if you truly understand peak oil theory. We are certainly at a low point here vs. other advanced nations, which is apparent to anyone who travels a bit.

      Interestingly, minimum wage has also increased below “inflation” – 4.4X

      This should be grist for some mills around here. My take is that we are boiling frogs. This is carefully planned takedown of the middle class, and the new “bread and circuses” is represented by high tech with its diminishing cost curve (for more tantalizing content) and the entertainment industry.

      • “(Item — Then — Now)

        Corvette Auto – 6000 – 50000

        Cheeze Whiz – .95 – 4.25

        3K ft suburban home – 50,000 – 295000 (my Mom’s home/equivalent here)

        Min. Wage – 1.65 – 7.25

        Gallon of milk – .50 – 3.00

        First Class Stamp – .06 – .49

        Color TV – (25″ RCA console) 575 – 250 (32 inch LCD)

        Honeywell Kitchen Computer – 10,000 Macbook Air 1150

        Gallon reg. gas – .34 – 3.40″


        Just a short list of actual examples personally experienced. It’s easy to see how an “analyst” only needs to add one “high-tech” item to the market basket to offset many more common items (including food and gas) and MISrepresent the actual inflation ”

        REALLY DR?? your List does not support your conclusion.

        Corvette Auto – 6000 – 50000____________8.33 ratio

        Cheeze Whiz – .95 – 4.25__________________4.47 ratio

        3K ft suburban home – 50,000 – 295000 (my Mom’s home/equivalent here)_____________5.9 ratio

        Min. Wage – 1.65 – 7.25___________4.33 ratio

        Gallon of milk – .50 – 3.00_________6.00 ratio

        First Class Stamp – .06 – .49_______8.2 ratio

        Color TV – (25″ RCA console) 575 – 250 (32 inch LCD)________0.43 ratio

        Honeywell Kitchen Computer – 10,000 Macbook Air 1150____________.115 ratio

        Gallon reg. gas – .34 – 3.40″___________10.0 ratio

        CPI__________6.46 ratio

        Food and housing clearly cheaper BY YOUR NUMBERS in relative terms.

        Stamps more expensive but also much displaced by the internet.

        Gas, a significant working/middle class budget item- more expensive per unit but ALSO far fewer galleons required to cover a given distance. Heck a Ford SUV today is more fuel efficient than a Ford compact car of 1969.

        Yeppers the ‘vette is more expensive, but I kinda think that the vastly cheaper consumer electronics impact the average person about 100X more.

        All in all by your own data the CPI is fairly accurate.

  14. I concur with the guy who said that motor oil is priced very high at auto parts stores! Had a Pep Boys coupon for $10 off 5qt jug and oil filter. So I bought their lowest priced oil (Formula Shell @ $21.50) and a Purolator Classic filter @ $3.50. So, $16sumthing after tax. Same equivalent combo @ Wal-Mart (SuperTech and Purolator Classic) was also $16sumthing. In my old cars, I use the absolute cheapest oil I can find. Do you remember the commercial, “Motor-oil-is-motor-oil”? (I know you do, Eric!)

    I also concur with the “inflation” BS. Six mo’s ago I had plugs and wires done on my 98 Ford van by the dealer to the tune of $1200. Exact same repair done 6 years prior was $600! So, doubling over 6 years is about 14% or so inflation….

    I also concur with your “use it or lose it” approach regarding paper dollars. The first thought in my mind as Silver Eagles. Basically, any $$ that you dont need to have totally liquid should be in PM, so you can ride out the inflation. This is especially true if you dont own any land.

  15. What burns my ass the most is that even if you are adept enough to buy assets that increase in nominal value to offset inflation, our overlords will tax you on that nominal “gain.” In other words, let’s say you had $100 in cash and bought gold. Over the course of 20 years if that same amount of gold had a value of $200 as a result of inflation (in other words that $100 now had lost 50% of its purchasing power), if you sold the gold you’d be taxed on the $100 of nominal “gain” so the government is still able to steal value from you.

    Another way to look at inflation is by imagining your cash in an impenetrable safe with armed guards standing in front of it. Through inflation the government can steal some of it anyway regardless of how impenetrable it is.

    • Yup – and of course, they really target you if you invest in land. Via the tax on real estate. It is typically several thousand dollars a year in most areas. Even in my area – which is rural and considered” low tax” – we pay about $2k a year for the privilege of “owning” land we are told is “ours.”

      • Ouch. Only $350 property tax for home and 20+ acres here. Outside fire protection district but who cares. Still only 15 gravel road minutes to town.
        P.T. is still theft but at least it can be minimized.

        • That’s the ticket, Me2!

          Where are you located? My area – SW Va. – is (allegedly) “low tax”… relative to the rest of the state.

          • Middle of nowhere, near Kamloops, British Columbia. Unincorporated area.

            It’s good now but like everywhere else, the clovers are arriving and are f’ing it up. Newest neighbors came from Vancouver and left their trash at the road for pick up! No clue at all that there are no services here. Then they complained that there were ‘bears here’. No shit, it’s the forest morons. Now the road is ‘too rough’ and should be paved.

            There should be sewer….. There should be water…… There should be a Starbucks…….

            FFS I wish they would stay in the city instead of trying to recreate it (and the tax burden) here.

            Unfortunately Eric, given your expressed feelings about cold and snow this year, this is not likely the place for you, though you would be welcome.

    • your labor/productivity is collateral for plutos’ loans…goofy.

      but that’s slavery. drovers & drovees…humans & dehumans…hamiltons & load the last tons – one step ahead of the jailer….

  16. “Whilst workers will usually resist a reduction of money-wages, it is not their practice to withdraw their labor whenever there is a rise in the price of wage-goods”

    -John Maynard Keynes, The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money

    Referred to as “The general Theory” it is the playbook we’ve all been living under since Nixon closed the gold window. Everyone who has questions as to why things are the way they are should read it, even if they disagree with Keynesian economics.

    These days the FED has figured out a way to keep inflation from “triggering” higher interest rates, which is the traditional method of keeping it in check, by inventing a very narrow definition of inflation and only tracking a few items. The “Basket of Goods” approach means they can set the inflation rate to be whatever they want it to be, based on a secret-shoper-like survey. You can bet the price of gasoline and motor oil isn’t figured into that calculation.

    • Eric_G – One of my coworkers, an otherwise normal middle class dad, is a fastidious budgeter and OCD about his personal finances. He tracks everything they buy and all their expenditures with Quicken (or some similar accounting software). When I told him the actual inflation rate was more on the order of 8 – 9%, he told me I was being too conservative. By last year his financial records showed an inflation rate rate, based on groceries, fuel, electricity and clothing more on the order of 11%. Based on what I see in our grocery cart, at the auto-parts store and at the farm and home store, I’d say that’s pretty much right.

      Another indicator of inflation that is being suppressed besides interest rates, is PM pricing. Gold and silver, being real money to the Fed’s Monopoly money, should reflect what the central banking transnational thieves are doing to our buying power. Such is not the case. Why? Here’s a peek:

    • Ar-rows by any other name would befell as skeet….

      When I saw the ambulance
      Screaming down Main Street
      I didn’t give it a thought
      But it was my Uncle Eugene
      He died on October the second 1981

      And my Uncle Wilbert
      They all called him Skinner
      They said for his younger ways
      He’d get drunk in the morning
      And show me the rolls of fifties and hundreds
      He kept in the glove box of his old gray Impala

      And we’re all gonna be here forever
      So Mama don’t you make such a stir
      Now put down that camera
      And come on and join up
      The last of the family reserve

      Now my second cousin
      His name was Callaway
      He died when he’d barely turned two
      It was peanut butter and jelly that did it
      The help she didn’t know what to do
      She just stood there and watched him turn blue

      And we’re all gonna be here forever
      So Mama don’t you make such a stir
      Just put down that camera
      And come on and join up
      The last of the family reserve

      And my friend Brian Temple
      He thought he could make it
      So from the third story he jumped
      He missed the swimming pool
      Only by inches
      And everyone said he was drunk

      Now there was great Uncle Julius
      And Aunt Annie Mueller
      And Mary and Granddaddy Paul
      And there was Hanna and Ella
      And Alvin and Alec
      He owned his own funeral hall

      And there are more I remember
      And more I could mention
      Than words I could write in a song
      But I feel them watching
      And I see them laughing
      And I hear them singing along

      We’re all gonna be here forever
      So Mama don’t you make such a stir
      Just put down that camera
      And come on and join up
      The last of the family reserve

      ~ lyle lovett, “family reserve”

      reserve status ain’t immortal. when it finally kicks, it won’t matter what nouns the fed uses. ar-rows, spar-rows, mia far-rows — rosemary’s baby’s comin’….

    • “These days the FED has figured out a way to keep inflation from “triggering” higher interest rates, which is the traditional method of keeping it in check,”

      But when that interest rate beach ball they have forced underwater pops back up WATCH OUT. All those millions of adjustable rate home loans will instantly go into foreclosure, only to then be “owned” by the – wait for it – Federal Reserve & Co.

      • Hi Gary,

        Yeah, I know several in that particular boat. It is going to get very ugly, very quickly, if interest rates jump to even six or seven percent.

        I wonder how long they can hold the beach ball down?

        • @Eric –
          (1.) Infinity, or until the world stops trusting the USA. After the first country gets scared and dumps US treasuries the dams will burst and the dominoes will fall.
          (2.) The Fed decides to quit milking us now skinny cows, flips the bird to our spendthrift politicians and they cash in. Then take the money and run to China where they are doing to them what they did to us in 1913 and we become a colony of the oriental masters.

          But either way they will let you rent the house you used to own.

  17. Thanks Eric…2%? Like Twain said…there’s lies, damned lies, and then there’s statistics! With CPI not including energy and food, and then massage the numbers some more with hedonics you can create anything you want. Yes it is a pitchfork moment!

  18. Or better yet oil is more expensive because that’s what those in the know warned people since the ’70s: the easy-to-get quality crude is running out and soon people will have to transfer to the harder-to-get mediocre crude. Now we’re on the harder-to-get mediocre yet Libertarians want the good ‘ol days of cheap fuel and they subscribe to the hokum of abiotic oil that supposedly refills oil wells faster than people can soak it up.

  19. Eric, the answer to why oil and filters cost more is very simple. Cars nowadays go 8,000-10,000 before oil changes. They want their revenues! Like the huge gas tax increases in Pennsylvania was due by their own admission……….cars are more fuel efficient, revenues are down. Follow the money…….

  20. I agree with you Eric, but I want to post a heads up for all of you car drivers reading this comments section:
    The 5 or 6 quarts of oil that you have to buy to do an oil change is nothing compared to what some people have to buy! Imagine having to buy 6 to 12 gallons of oil plus 2 or more filters large enough to hold a quart of oil or more each. Semi-trucks require that much expensive oil, and of course that expense gets passed to the consumers who have bought what that truck shipped.
    Oil changes for those trucks happen from 10,000 to 20,000 miles on standard oil. Trucks with solo drivers usually travel about 140,000 miles which equals up to 14 oil changes. I’m not sure how far trucks can go with the vastly more expensive synthetic oil.

    • Thanks for bringing that up, Brian. It’s certainly another contributing factor to rising food prices. Anyone who has been to the supermarket recently knows all about it. It’s hard to not spend at least $100 – and you walk out with maybe two bags of stuff.

    • Brian, Since the late 60’s oil companies have experimented with using bypass oil filters, doing oil analysis and only changing oil on big rigs every 100,000 miles and sometimes beyond. With the new nano tech filters, big rigs using synthetics that stand behind their products NEVER change oil, just filters. I’m familiar with this since I’ve been pounding the road since 1972 and generally spend 12-14 hrs a day in a T-800 KW. Back when I owned my own trucks(before I wised up), I looked at every trade mag available to keep up with the latest oil technology. Chevron, Mobil and Shell among others have been trying to find the ultimate use for oil in big rigs before I knew anything about it. I can assure you this though, synthetics are definitely the way to go.

      • Well that is good information Eightsouthman! The last OTR trucking company was a great and successfully growing one that used regular oil. The owner is a brilliant man. If he isn’t using synthetic oil, then I suppose that either the tax write-off expense favors having many oil changes per year or that the synthetic oil isn’t nearly as good as the claims that are being made.
        Here is something else to consider: Most successful trucking companies nowadays buy brand new trucks which lose value as soon as the truck has been purchased, and sell those same trucks 3 or 4 years later with less than 500,000 miles on them despite the fact that they can easily last for more than a million miles using standard oil. Something is causing the aquarium of fish to stink!

  21. The Fed has openly championed a 2 to 4 percent annual inflation rate since 1913. It is a “conspiracy” in plain view. So every year knock off 2 – 4% of your saved wealth and without at least a 4 -8% (accounting for taxes) increase in wages your lifestyle goes down not up. And with the progressive income tax not properly taking that into account the state sponsored slavery it is even worse. But the wealth of the Morgans, Rockefellers etc. was grandfathered in and they pay no tax, which guarantees their financial dominance forever without any competition able to rise up.

    Now we have an administration openly attacking the wealthy ($250,00.00 a year family income) with no accounting for loss of living standard, and the prols love it. as long as they get some free school lunch, SChip, section 8, EBT, or medicade money and a “tax credit” after buying whatever Uncle Sam wants you to buy. Motor oil is just another victim, but not the worst insult we are subjected to.

    • People like myself, who make things for a living, find better and better ways. We cause a natural deflation, averaged out, of 2-4% a year. The bankers steal it. They chose that number carefully. It’s where price points can remain about the same each year. Most people don’t know what goes on, all the work done, just to keep a price on the shelf the same.

      • Agreed. It is the most devious and evil system of farming the heard imaginable, and only a very few figure it out. And even fewer profit from it.

    • For the skinny on the Fed, see “The Creature From Jekyll Island:”

      (The book of the same name is excellent if you can find a copy.)

      • Griffin lost me when he started running with the chemtrails crowd. For the original (from which he “borrowed” heavily) see Eustace Mullins “Secrets of the Federal Reserve.”
        Some excellent points in the blogpost and comments, especially as regards the overt LIES being told “officially” about inflation. Sure, you can buy more computer/iCrap for the same numerical value of currency this year than ten years ago, but you really don’t eat silicon much, do you?
        Proof of the extent of the official conspiracy to mask and lie about real inflation is the packaging fraud being practiced by virtually ALL of the the oligarchy’s owned assets – in other words, the incredible shrinking boxes of everything on the shelves.
        Boiling frogs, indeed…

        • “Griffin lost me when he started running with the chemtrails crowd. ”


          It’s amazing how many people internalize the fallacy of argument from authority.

          Arguments stand or fall on their own merits.

          If someone offers a sound argument for one issue, but a not so sound argument for another issue, so what???

          When he’s right, he’s right. When he’s wrong he’s wrong.

          It should never really be about who argues for or against something. Not ultimately. Yes, people may have or lack street cred. But that is never the final criterion. It should always be about the merits of the arguments themselves.

          For example, Adolf Hitler believed the world was round. Does that mean the premise that the world is round has been tainted and discredited by the man?

          Please. Learn to think for yourself.

          • @Bevin,

            Beyond chemtrails, Griffin’s site covers the discovery of Noah’s Ark, HAARP, and even published a readers claim that aliens are real among other controversial topics.

            Another ding on Griffin for those who worship Authority is that Griffin was the editor of a John Birch society publication for a long period of time.



            “I am a new subscriber. My research over the past months, which includes Mr. Griffin’s and others’ writings about the Fed, money and the global economy, have convinced me that this understanding of our financial system is plausible.

            “I think it does the movement a disservice, however, to bring up the topic of aliens, as a recent reader did…”

            Griffin’s Response:
            PUBLISHER’S REPLY:
            “”Thank you, Diana, for your critique. We did hesitate when adding that statement to our Readers’ Comments section, but the key word in our news service is UNFILTERED.

            If we filter out someone’s opinion because we or others may disagree, we are no better than those who control our major media. We operate under the assumption that, if the topic is of interest to a large percentage of readers (and the possibility of alien life definitely is in that category) and if it does not violate The Creed of Freedom or our Code of Conduct, we have an obligation to give it exposure. We have utmost confidence in our subscribers to make their own evaluations””

          • Dear Tor,

            Yes. In the end, each of us must always rely on our own judgment. We may out of earned respect presume that certain individuals have credibility.

            But credence is never unconditional. In the end, we must always evaluate the arguments pro and con on their intrinsic merits, not on what someone else says about them.

          • john “a beautiful mind” nash. is crazy. nash equilibrium disqualified.

            “But credence is never unconditional”

            but creedence clearwater revival is. run through the jungle. it’s a good place to be from. get it behind ya’ (generic dx/rx).

        • Engineers and others work very hard to make things better for less. Central banking is about stealing that gain. Because the public at large expects X to cost Y. Then the bankers get greedy so they start stealing faster than things can be made cheaper. Then X costs Y+n.

          In some areas we stay ahead, like consumer electronics. But there’s only so much that can be done with other things.

  22. The problem in motor oil is buying it by the quart.

    In four, five, and more quart containers the price hasn’t changed much and probably not all that bad with the additives and such for the extended drain intervals of new cars.

    Chain auto parts stores have huge mark ups on oil and coolant. If you’re not buying it on sale you’re getting ripped off. Used to be that the price at an autoparts store was cheaper than a store that didn’t mainline in something else. Now a days its best to buy motor oil at Walmart or other such store. For some reason the autoparts stores have gone to the very high everyday price, regular price is sales price model. Much like Kohls or Bed bath and beyond…. stores you don’t go in without a coupon during a sale.

    • No doubt. I haven’t paid more than $20 for oil and a filter (combined) in a long time. Just purchase a four quart bottle of Rotella and an oil filter for the tractor and it was less than $20 at Wally World. I usually purchase my car oil filters in bulk on ebay for around $3 per filter. For the cars I use the blue stuff from Walmart. It’s about $12 for five quarts.

      • dom, I purchased a gallon of Rotella T 15W=40 last Friday for 24.03 although that was from a retailer waiting for a trucker to use his parking availability. There’s such a huge discrepancy in oil filter quality I only use Amsoil, B Line, and maybe Purolator. Amsoil has a chart showing what virtually every brand of oil filter will do and it’s not a pretty picture for most of them.

  23. inflation’s a euphemism for dilution: the water in the whisky, the mystery in the meat, the melamine in the milk, the lidocaine in the coke….those at/near the front of the line get the current full jolt value, those successively further away from front get jiggier & jiggier jilt value.

    speaking of oil ch-ch-ch-changes, had an armenian mechanic that once plied his trade in israel. he told me it was common, then, for the changed out oil drum to become the changed in oil drum….


    Stock dilution is an economic phenomenon resulting from the issue of additional common shares by a company. This increase in the number of shares outstanding can result from a primary market offering (including an initial public offering), employees exercising stock options, or by conversion of convertible bonds, preferred shares or warrants into stock. This dilution can shift fundamental positions of the stock such as ownership percentage, voting control, earnings per share, and the value of individual shares. A broader definition specifies dilution as any event that reduces an investor’s stock price below the initial purchase price.

    Share dilution scams

    A share dilution scam happens when a company, typically traded in unregulated markets such as the OTC Bulletin Board and the Pink Sheets, repeatedly issues a massive amount of shares into the market (using follow-on offerings) for no particular reason, considerably devaluing share prices until they become almost worthless, causing huge losses to shareholders.

    Then, after share prices are at or near the minimum price a stock can trade and the share float has increased to an unsustainable level, those fraudulent companies tend to reverse split and continue repeating the same scheme.

    • Plus, the government has manipulated the CPI to vastly reduce the current Social Security payouts.

      Using the inflation statistics at John Williams’, today (2014), the government is paying less than half (in actual purchasing power) to retirees than the social security payouts in 1980.

      So Eric’s rough calculations of the real inflation using engine oil are spot on. I suspect many other non-fluctuating commodities will show the same pattern.

      We’re starting to see the traditional response to inflating food prices. i.e. shrink the package and hold the price. The game falls apart with fresh produce however, so those price increases are blamed on climate change…. (the Laughingstock-in-Chief desperately wants his “Carbon Tax”, so that rhetoric is going to ramp-up)

  24. Probably the best hedge against inflationary theft is purchasing precious metals. I bought quite a bit during the 1980s and 1990s, and it has at the very least held its value. (Left laying around in cash it would of course have lost most of its buying power.) No, you can’t walk into the supermarket with gold or silver to buy groceries, but you can sell a bit of it off when liquidity is needed.

    Synthetic motor oil might not be the best inicator, though. When Mobil 1 debuted in the late 1970s it cost about $4/quart, and that’s in dollars not nearly inflated to the extent they are today. Wal-Mart currently sells a 5-quart jug of Mobil 1 for about $27, a little over $5/quart. Sometimes technological progress masks the inflationary effect. (This is most obviously seen in electronics, particularly computers.)

    Overall you are spot on. Just in my lifetime I have seen the dollar lose over 90% of its value. I also remember when real silver coin was in circulation and not considered to be anything unusual. Today’s coins are merely slugs.

    • But if you live in a rural area then you get screwed trying to sell PM when you desparately need cash, as I have recently found out. The actual local coin shop closed due to the senior citizen owner getting a bad hip injury over a year ago. I tried to find a local buyer recently and was given a hand full of potential buyers from an in-town person who knew people. None of those people wanted to buy that gold eagle except for one who wanted me to sell it to him for half price, which of course I declined. I then made a phone call to a large town that had several coin buyers listed in the phone book. The town was 50 miles away. I called several numbers without anyone answering the phone. Finally I reached someone, and I asked how much he would buy the coin for and I told him how far away I lived. He of course was vague, so I asked him if he pays with-in PM dealer margins. He said yes. I drove all the way over their only to find an old coot who likes to yap and to dicker. He of course told me that he is just a small guy, and when I replied that I was likewise a small guy he waved his hand dismissively. He then told me that he had to make a phone call in order to find a buyer first. He recieved an answer that I would have to wait 2 weeks before the guy would buy it. Meanwhile, I had to drive to another large town asap for an interview, and that town only had one store that might buy that coin. I had no choice but to chew that old bastards ass out for doing me wrong, and I drove to the other big town that was another 50 miles away. After the interview I ended up selling that coin for $200 below the buy price of APMEX, but that was a whole lot better than selling it for half priced like my local store offered! Later, I had to sell some silver dimes to tide me over untill I recieved a check. A store in another local town had a sign out with the desire to buy coins. During the above situation I had already asked him if he bought gold, but he told me no because that was out of his price range. Well, I then visited him with those silver dimes and asked him how much he would buy each of them for. He only wanted to pay melt value for them! I walked away.
      The point I am making is that holding precious metals isn’t really much of a hedge at all unless you live in a city that has a bunch of coin dealers! Even in a total collapse of our present fiat monetary system you will face a shortage of PM buyers in rural areas who can then take advantage of your situation! I drove well over 150 miles and burning $30 of diesel to sell that 1 ounce gold eagle for $200 less than even the low APMEX buy price. Why didn’t I just sell it to APMEX? Because I would have had to pay insurance and shipping to send it, and I would have had to wait for awhile to get paid.
      My advise for other rural people is to buy livestock which reproduces if you can even if you don’t own land. Read up about Joel Salatin and Greg Judy to learn how this can be done. Greg Judy has become a huge rancher while owning far less than enough land to feed them, and he least that extra land cheaply.

      • Hi Brian,

        I’ve “invested” in things like land and supplies, the idea being to ride out what’s coming (if it comes to that) where I am by being mostly self-sufficient. I figure keeping a low profile and staying put is sound policy…

      • Brain – Sadly for you right now, PMs are down, way down and only a few of us really understand their true value: buying your own life if things go terribly wrong. Think German-Jews buying their way across the border in the face of the Nazi machine. Now if you were able to buy in back when gold was $400 / troy oz. and silver was $3.50, you’d be sitting pretty right now. If you’d been buying all along and “dollar averaging” you’d still do okay. But you’re right; not on the spur of the moment. Getting the best price for your PM’s takes time. Now if you had a few cartons of .22 cartridges…

        Just keep in mind that when you go to sell “junk” silver or bullion (even Gold & Silver Eagles), you will most likely get very little over “spot” (if anything at all) locally. The best way to move PMs right now would probably be Ebay. You can reach far more individual buyers that way and they’ll typically pay a higher price (minus the seller’s fees, final value fee and PayPal’s cut if you use it). It’s better to stay with smaller denominations, such as 1/10 oz. Eagles rather than 1 oz. or even 1/2 or quarter oz. gold coins (as you just found out). It’s true that the premium is higher per piece on smaller gold coins, but it’s a lot easier to locate a buyer with $130 than it is to find one with $1250. And carrying them to a dealer, even in a big town, is going to cost you. He’s looking at holding the item until it sells, paying overhead and still trying to turn a profit; which could take weeks.

        As many far wiser men than me have noted, you can’t eat precious metals. So your point on livestock is a good one. Non perishables such as fuel (like propane or properly treated gas / diesel), hardware and building materials, fencing / cattle panels, tee posts, motor oil, anti-freeze and anything you know you are going to use are all good inflationary hedges.

        Properly stored ammunition in popular calibers is another good bet as a trade item in the future with a high profit potential. Right now .22 rimfire ammo is still a hot commodity. As you know, guns without ammo make poor clubs. And in the aftermath of this latest wacko shoot ’em up on the Left Coast, you can bet the anti-gunners will be coming after the “bitter clingers” with a vengeance. Bloomberg’s dedicating millions to his civilian disarmament effort too. I wonder how much he paid to have freak boy to shoot up a sorority house? If the pendulum swings the wrong way, you could easily see common calibers bringing a buck a shell. Premium belted magnum rifle ammo is already there and .50 BMG is $3+ each.

        Just a reminder: livestock, gardening and stored staples are great as long as you have the means to defend them. If we see a serious economic downturn your small stock, your potato patch and clean water will be worth a lot more than gold. Did I mention that a gun with no ammo makes for a poor club? Brass, copper and lead: The new precious metals.

        • precious…is a supply function. & how many times, if any, “the precious” pulls your fat outta’ the fire, gross or net, is some probability function that can’t be computed.

          this country is awash in ammo. pea-shooters, too. if shf, & you’ve got something untold numbers of close to relatively close by others need, lead will be coming at you from behind every ambush angle: “zed’s dead, baby”. there are 1st person accounts on the web from lucky survivors (don’t be bias-fooled) of such scenes in argentina, bosnia, if simple thought experiments, history in general, aren’t enough.

          smart (but also lucky) european jews bought outto, well in advance, not ammo. that goes for germans, too, like my grandparents, or any other “nationalities”, who got the hell outta’ there: “…jed, move away from there. californy’s the place you nought to be…” .

          • Thought I heard a rumblin’
            Calling to my name

            Two hundred million guns are loaded
            Satan cries “take aim”

            Better run through the jungle…

            Over on the mountain, thunder magic spoke
            Let the people know my wisdom
            Fill the land with smoke

            Better run through the jungle…

            ~ ccr

            Andy Dufresne: [in a letter to Red] Dear Red. If you’re reading this, you’ve gotten out. And if you’ve come this far, maybe you’re willing to come a little further. You remember the name of the town, don’t you?

            Red: Zihuatanejo.

            Andy Dufresne: I could use a good man to help me get my project on wheels. I’ll keep an eye out for you and the chessboard ready. Remember, Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies. I will be hoping that this letter finds you, and finds you well. Your friend. Andy.

            red, jed, zed, lead, dead…hope? be careful with that one….

        • Thanks Boothe for your reply.
          I had bought that PM while I was driving truck OTR in preparation of my leaving that ocupation and becoming self employed. I have metaphorically been recieving repeat crotch kicking every since the time that I made the transition over a year ago. It seems like destiny is telling me that I am not allowed to become anything more than an employee enabling the dreams of wealthy employers to come true despite my higher than average intelligence; but my reply to destiny is a strong F! U! It is entirely possible that destiny will kill me rather than to allow success, but I don’t give a damn!
          I have passed some tests that should enable me to make good money in the oil fields as soon as I get one of the results back and travel to a neighboring state.
          I will attempt to work for 6 – 18 months and return home.
          I mentioned my advice to buy livestock in my previous message. I tried to lease a low cost fixer-upper pasture last year without success because I happened to live in an area where all ranchers bought hay and kept their cattle despite the 2 year drought. Even the most scrubbiest of pastures were leased and now those ranchers are making great money selling beef in a market where there is a low supply of it. I congradualate them, but this is the reason I wasn’t able to find a field to lease and to put livestock on earlier within a reasonable driving range from my home.
          The next time I return with some cash I will move a county or 2 north if nothing remains available here. I have a fairly nice 3 season travel trailer to use as my home.
          I should have also pointed out in my previous post that low cost livestock such as hair sheep are usually more profitable per pound or per acre than cattle are, but don’t tell the cattlemen that!

          • Brian if you know anything about raising livestock it is that prices go up and down. Price of livestock is high right now but it may turn around and be low in a year or two. The price of feeder cattle is up a lot also. You have to pay a lot just to start feeding them. Good luck with your speculation. I have lived long enough to see the farmers losing money on every head of livestock that they raise and this has happened many different years. I know many different farmers. I had lunch with one just a couple of days ago where he talked about the farm prices.Clover

            As for Eric talking about inflation. For one thing his price he paid for his oil was way over what it costs around here. The second thing is that every country that has had zero inflation over the few decades has had zero growth and poor employment. Eric if you want that it sounds just like you. Stick with something you know about.

      • “Even in a total collapse of our present fiat monetary system you will face a shortage of PM buyers in rural areas who can then take advantage of your situation!”

        If the fiat money system totally collapses you won’t want or need to trade your precious metals for paper, those metals along with barter will become the medium of exchange. I expect that silver US coin would be popular as it is of known quality and is minted in convenient form. (Of course if things get so bad that nothing but food and guns are of value, all bets are off!)

        I live in an area that was once considered rural but has been built up over the decades, and is close enough to population centers that finding buyers at this stage is not a problem. Most of what I have on-hand was purchased at what now look like ridiculously low prices. Of course if I lived in a really rural environment it would be more of a problem.

        • I wouldn’t even dream of allowing anyone around me (not even some family) know that I have any PMs at all. Only my very most trusted friends have a clue about how much ammo, etc. I have squirreled away. Now, I live in a nice little rural town, with lots of good neighbors around, but the reality is that if you are known to have SOME stuff of great value, there’s always a chance that someone who listens to the grapevine might decide to see if they can separate you from some of it… especially if you are not always home. If you sell such things locally, there is simply always a good chance that word will get around. There are few secrets in a small town, and flashing your gold anywhere people know who and where you are seems downright silly.

          I work four days a week in town, and though my house would be difficult to break into, nothing is impossible. Keeping quiet about what you have is just one more layer of precaution.

          If you MUST sell something like that, the farther away from where you live, the better.

        • While I think the nuke threat is just above zero, but from an Amazon review of the book:

          However, Ferfal argues persuasively against Tappan’s strategy based on Ferfal’s experiences in surviving Argentina’s economic collapse. He notes that government will always survive, that it will confiscate food and other supplies from the countryside to feed the cities, and that it will maintain the rule of law. All of which significantly affect one’s survival plans and stockpiling. For example, he notes that open carry of assault rifles will get you arrested and imprisoned (the wealthy will ALWAYS maintain a police force to protect them) — and that a concealed pistol and folding pocketknife is more practical.

          3) Money will be of PRIME importance –not a curious artifact. Mel Tappan could afford to ignore this because he had married an wealthy heiress.

          4) Ferfal agrees with Mel Tappan that isolated retreats in the rural countryside are likely to become what police called “secondary crime scenes” –places where residents are tortured by bandits into revealing hidden stores and are then murdered. He and Tappan both agreed on the importance of being part of a tight-knit, mutually-protective community.

          3) What led American survivalists –and Mel Tappan — into error was that they lacked security clearances and hence knowledge of US Government plans to maintain itself and its control even in the worst disaster: Major Nuclear War. Declassifed FEMA documents show a massive effort by the Government to relocate officials to emergency bunkers, to maintain control through hardened communications networks, and to seize essential resources (food stockpiles,etc) as soon as fallout radiation declines using databases of where the warehouses are located. This to supplement the US Government’s own huge caches. Google “FEMA 160 Recovery From Nuclear Attack” or “Atchison Storage Facility”.

          4) Ferfal’s view of the post-disaster environment is far more probable and realistic than Tappan’s — and hence his plans, advice, tactics, and equipment recommendations are more valuable.

          The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse Paperback
          by Fernando “Ferfal” Aguirre (Author)
          258 customer reviews

          • from his blog:

            I have both Argentine (place of birth) and European citizenship (Jus sanguinis “right of blood”). My father was born in Spain and So were my mother’s parents.
            Having the EU citizenship gives you a lot of benefits. You may or may not like the socialist twist Europe has. I certainly do not like that much socialism, none the less the advantages of dual citizenship are still there.
            In my book there’s a chapter precisely about relocation, and I suggest having 3 countries, plan A, B and C as last resort plans.
            3 Countries: Plan A, B, and C……………………………….247

            If there’s anarchy in a country bugging in and shooting bad guys all day isn’t much of a plan. In my opinion you should leave such country before that.
            When the civil war hit Spain my grandparents moved to Argentina. When there was the Dirty War in Argentina, those that had strong political backgrounds exiled to other countries, during the 2001 crisis a lot of people left, they left by the thousands and many paid dearly to have lawyers and researchers gather enough proof of a Italian or Spaniard relative so as to get the much sought after EU citizenship.
            So yes, it is a good idea if you can get it….

            My idea is to have at least three alternatives, plan A Band c, A being your current home country and B being your other 1st world alternative. If something happens in US, you move to another country of somewhat equal standard of living. Plan C is your serious, more unlikely and far fetched SHTF plan, mostly a far away country (3rd world) where your little investments or retirement multiply in buying capacity. Example, Argentina or other south American countries, maybe Philippines if you have friends or family there.
            This isn’t any novel idea. It’s been decades since Ted Turner and Arnold Schwarzenegger own lots of land and nice retreats in Patagonia here in Argentina. Lots of land, food and mostly a lot of potable water thanks to the glaciers and mountain lakes.
            These guys, you may not like them, but stupid they are not.
            About being patriotic or not, I don’t think its got anything to do with taking advantage of the possibilities you have. It’s not as if you’d go fight for the Germans if they ever start war with the US.


          • @Ozy – “…Declassifed FEMA documents show a massive effort by the Government to relocate officials to emergency bunkers, to maintain control through hardened communications networks, and to seize essential resources (food stockpiles,etc) …”

            As George Carlin said, it is big F’n club and you aren’t in it.”
            I say act accordingly.

  25. eric, It just so happens I ordered various oils from Amsoil Saturday. I paid $8.15 + $.43 per qt. for the top of the line 0-W30. At that price it’s still cheaper than Mobil 1 and is 25,000 mile oil. I won’t argue it’s significantly more expensive than just a few years ago though. Actually, I think it’s increased in price less than most other oils since I don’t ever recall it being less than $5.50 or so and that’s been long ago.

    OTOH, what you say is spot on about oil prices and it is an outrage….but only if you believe what the gummint says the price of inflation is. Inflation, in reality is 6% or maybe more right now and has been for many years. When you consider what some products cost that can’t be watered down though, I think we’re closer to 10% per year.

    Eric, you pointed out the all time high prices of vehicles this year and that article was very accurate. Now the housing market is touting some very high prices as if that’s a good thing for consumers. No doubt it’s great for banksters and their shyster cousin loan companies along with the industry that builds them but it sucks for a nation where wages have been dropping steadily since 1974. We’re all getting it broken off in us and the quality of everyday items reflect how people are living with less and less.

    • And let just add this, Good food is horrendously expensive. I can’t get a head of broccoli or cauliflower for less than $3.50 at a really good price and mostly half a dollar more than that. I won’t even quote the price of steak or the way pork has risen. Chicken is fairly expensive even though I hate to eat the stuff since it’s very difficult to find chicken not raised in a way on feed you don’t want to consume. Squash at $2,89/lb.? Preposterous, and no telling what’s been sprayed on it and the ground it’s grown in. Limes are at least half a dollar each. We’re being crippled at the grocery story and I have my doubts HAARP doesn’t have something to do with this horrible drought. You cannot grow crops with well water only and we just had our first significant rain this year this week-end.

      • HAARP is being dismantled. In the mainstream news media, the military rep is quoted as saying they now have other means of managing the ionosphere.

        I seem to be one of few that noticed the wording. The US military moved a conspiracy theory into conspiracy fact.

        Responding to questions from Sen. Lisa Murkowski during a Senate hearing Wednesday, David Walker, deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force for science, technology and engineering, said this is “not an area that we have any need for in the future” and it would not be a good use of Air Force research funds to keep HAARP going. “We’re moving on to other ways of managing the ionosphere, which the HAARP was really designed to do,” he said. “To inject energy into the ionosphere to be able to actually control it. But that work has been completed.”

        • read melville’s “the confidence man” awhile back. i never knew how good he was…& now working thru his catalog.

          haarpooners on the pequod…moby wins, kills ’em all save one, in the end. which is really to say, they kill themselves…..

      • Eight…. one of the main reasons fresh fruits and vegetables are so expensive is that they are no longer in sufficient demand. If you look at any average grocery cart, they are filled with packaged, frozen and non-foods, not fresh stuff. The price is determined in great part by the volume of merchandise the store can order and sell in a reasonable length of time, since fresh stuff simply doesn’t have much shelf life. So, the less people buy, the less the store can move, the less they will stock and the price goes up. This is, of course, on top of inflation and all the insane taxes and regulations that absorb so much of our economy.

        Next, I don’t know where you get the idea that gardens won’t grow without rain, but I assure you this is not the case. Rain has a great many benefits, obviously, but I grew nice gardens and orchards for nearly 50 years in the desert, and well water was all the plants got 99% of the time… even when it did rain. And my well water wasn’t all that great to start with – somewhat alkaline. You may have some serious salts in your well water, however, which would make a big difference for you. I’d suggest you contemplate moving somewhere else if you don’t get enough rain. There isn’t much you can do about saline ground water.

        And HAARP doesn’t have anything to do with it. The big thing people forget is that the climate is always changing. Always has, and always will. We just have to adapt.

  26. Spot on as usual Eric. The only part I would disagree with is “It’s both theft and a tax”. All taxation is theft so it’s redundant to say it is both theft and a tax in my opinion.

    I too think we are to the point of “sooner rather than later” regarding the dollar’s collapse, society, the way of life as we know it. Not that I don’t almost welcome it at this point. I need to start preparing better. Buckle up folks, ain’t gonna be purdy.

    • “It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and money system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.”

      – Henry Ford , founder of the Ford Motor Company


      (” People don’t realize they’ve been fleeced.” EPeters)

      • Things as certain as Death and Taxes, can be more firmly believ’d.
        —Daniel Defoe The Political History of the Devil 1726.

        Our new Constitution is now established, and has an appearance that promises permanency; but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.
        —Benjamin Franklin, in a letter to Jean-Baptiste Leroy, 1789

        even if the details are hazy or unknown, people know. & not a few have willingly, eagerly, joined the fleecers. it’s a cluster-fleece…(not an educational deficiency).


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