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Updated: 11 hours 46 min ago

Anarchast: Angel Clark, Anarchapulco

Thu, 10/30/2014 - 18:57

Jeff interviews recent arrival in Acapulco, Angel Clark. Topics include: voluntarism, Acapulco, relative freedoms between US and Acapulco, the lifestyle there, the upcoming Anarchapulco event.

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Communist Central Planning Old Bitch Swears She Will Stop Counterfeiting Money

Thu, 10/30/2014 - 17:44

Janet Yellen announced she will stop "quantitative easing".  She's lying... but that's what she said.  For more information on the financial terrorist organization she fronts, see below.

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Three-Quarters Of Americans Abroad Want To Take This "Alarming" Action

Thu, 10/30/2014 - 05:37

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor, Jeff Berwick]

The exodus from the United States (US) has not let up, and is only picking up steam as the US economy faces further financial and economic turbulence. Although an "end to quantitative easing" was announced yesterday, a large share of investors are not confident in US prospects and US citizens at home and abroad are even less confident of being owned by the rapacious US government. 

This is demonstrated in a new survey by deVere Group, an independent financial advisory organization, showing 73% of Americans abroad have thought about turning in their US passports and renouncing. With an estimated 7.6 million Americans overseas, that means about 5.5 million Americans have pondered relinquishing their passport. Holding a US passport has become a liability mainly because the US taxes its citizens, including permanent non-residents, on their worldwide income. It is one of the few countries which does so. 

Forbes writes,

If all those considering renouncing followed through, it would be the biggest spike ever in renunciations. Already, Federal Register data reveals renunciations spiked by 39% shortly after FATCA—the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act—came into effect. FATCA is the culprit, says the survey, which is based on 400 expatriates.

16% of respondents indicated they would not consider it, while 11% did not know. Nigel Green, founder and chief executive of deVere Group, said: “It is alarming that nearly three quarters of Americans abroad said that they are going to or have thought about giving up their U.S. citizenship.”

FATCA is blamed for the increased expatriations. We've discussed FATCA many times in the TDV Blog, as well in the TDV Newsletter. FATCA was enacted in 2010, and after a four-year long implementation, is essentially in full-swing globally with reporting requirements for foreign banks and fines coming down from the US government.

FATCA's requirement for banks abroad to report on Americans with accounts of over $50,000 forces banks to spend more money or close accounts with Americans. Many are closing accounts of Americans abroad, creating huge problems for those still carrying an American passport.  

Record-breaking fines will rain down in the wake of FATCA. recedent for fining banks was set when the IRS fined UBS for $780 million in penalties and American names. After that Credit Suisse accepted a guilty plea and paid $2.6 billion fine. More than 100 other Swiss banks have settled. So why bother? 

Meanwhile, the number of Americans expatriating continues to climb, as there are 776 names on the Treasury Department list for the third quarter of 2014, marking the third highest quarterly figure in history. This is a 39% increase in the three months through September. 2,533 individuals have renounced in 2014. 2014 will likely break 2013's all-time expatriation record of 2,999.

As Bloomberg writes,

The U.S., the only Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development nation that taxes citizens wherever they reside, stepped up the search for tax dodgers after UBS AG (UBSN) paid a $780 million penalty in 2009 and handed over data on about 4,700 accounts. Shunned by Swiss and German banks and with Fatca starting, more than 9,000 Americans living overseas gave up their passports over the past five years.

STANDARD CHARTERED CLOSING ACCOUNTS

Banks will continue to close down the accounts of Americans. 

Standard Chartered notified thousands of UAE small and medium enterprise customers it is closing their accounts this month. Pressure from US regulators finally got to the bank as it realized it was facing, at least, millions of dollars in compliances costs. 

“We regret to notify you that Standard Chartered Bank will no longer be able to provide banking services to you, and your account(s) will be closed 30 days from the date of this letter,” the London-listed bank wrote in a letter to customers dated Oct. 9.

Reuters, which saw the letter, claims customers are angry, saying they have not been given enough time to properly close their accounts.

The bank has already had a taste of US regulatory fines as the New York State Department of Financial Services, which proposed a BitLicense for Bitcoin this year, fined the bank $300 million. Between 1,400 and 8,000 accounts are expected to be affected by the US settlement.

As you can see, US regulators and the bank have put the livelihoods of many at risk. The accounts affects are between $1 million and $35 million so its not merely a matter of taking a cashier's cheque.

WORLDWIDE FATCA

Big steps are being taken globally to ensure that government's get their taxes, and it's all been inspired by FATCA. These new steps include a new OECD/G20 standard on automatic information exchange between the nations, including major financial centers.

All-in-all this means fifty-one jurisdictions have committed to automatically exchanging information.  The first information exchanges by early adopters are set to be deployed by September 2017.

Fifty-one jurisdictions, many represented at Ministerial level, translated their commitments into action during a massive signing of a Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement that will activate automatic exchange of information, based on the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters. Early adopters who signed the agreement have pledged to work towards launching their first information exchanges by September 2017. Others are expected to follow in 2018.

“We are making concrete progress toward the G20 objective of winning the fight against tax evasion,” OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurria said. "The fact that so many jurisdictions have agreed today to automatically exchange financial account information shows the significant change that can occur when the international community works together in a focused and ambitious manner. The world is quickly becoming a smaller place for tax cheats, and we are determined to ensure that developing countries also reap the benefits of greater financial sector transparency.” 

INTERNATIONALIZATION IS THE KEY

These are all reasons to think big. The world is your playground as an investor. So have some fun. There are ways in which you can diversify your assets and spread your risk around, and its all legal, which of course is what is most important. 

TDV Wealth Management has the only completely FATCA proof solution for Americans that abides by all the ridiculous government laws. Demand for passports greatly outstrips worldwide supply right now, making it more important than ever to procure a passport now.  For more info on that, click here

Comments? Join us at TDV.

Jeff Berwick

Zambian President Dead... Good! Only 195 More to Go

Wed, 10/29/2014 - 14:16

The Zambian President Michael Sata, known as King Cobra for his sharp-tongue, is dead, and that is not a bad thing. He died in London where his imperial masters had brought him to administer top notch western medical treatment or possibly kill him if he wasn't taking their orders satisfactorily.

Zambian officials have not confirmed his death, though "multiple sources" among Sata's delegation are confirming the death. A Zambian Watchdog website said it had "100 percent confirmation" the president had died.

Hopefully he is not replaced and then 195 more Presidents, Prime Murderers and Dicktators do the same in all other countries and there is some hope for humanity.

The Zambian president was recently quoted, like most lying politicians, as saying, "I am still alive." That's just propaganda.

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When he was young Sata thought of becoming a priest. Instead he settled for another establishment-position: a police officer.  New York Times writes of his campaign promises,

As a candidate, Mr. Sata ran on an explicit promise to protect workers from exploitation by China, and tapped into the nation’s divide between rich and poor, pledging to share Zambia’s wealth.

Share whose wealth? This is Zambia we are talking about, after all. 

Of course even if all the Presidents and Prime Murderers of the world died hierarchy would still exist, and there are millions and millions of people who thirst for power over others. That's why remaining consistently vigilant is so important, and recognizing the impulses in yourself to have control over how others live their lives. If they are doing no harm to others, then leave their folly to them, and focus on your own.

Here's to hoping that election scheduled for 90 days from now doesn't ever happen... 
    

Jeff Berwick

The Most Dangerous Religion: Americanism

Wed, 10/29/2014 - 04:12

[The following post is written by TDV Contributor Jayant Bhandari]

I find religions rather repulsive, mostly because the concept of religion suggests that people must look up to some scriptures as a point of reference. Irrespective of how good or perfect they might be if one has not imbibed the concepts as one’s own, one will fail to decide on what is the right course of action in life’s rather everyday complex events, which require weighing many ideas.

If “beliefs” and “faith” are inculcated early in life as the way to process the world, they kill children’s capacity—irreparably—to reason and to understand the world through evidence. If they are taught mystical stories that are not rooted in the way the universe works, they can no longer see what the objective-reality tells them, even after they have grown up.

At best, a book can teach isolated principles, but if it makes it incumbent upon its adherents to follow it rigidly it will destroy their thinking-power, individuality and morality.

HINDUISM VS ISLAM

I grew up in a two-block non-Muslim community within a predominantly Muslim city of Bhopal. Most people don’t know, but when “India” became “independent” in 1947 they were several countries: Pakistan, India, Kashmir, Hyderabad, Bhopal, Goa, etc.

Bhopal was run by a Muslim ruler and was mostly Muslim. What came to be known as “India” soon annexed—ignoring its agreement with the English—these independent states through force. “India” did something else very immoral. It made major Muslim cities capitals of provinces. This was done to encourage Hindu migration into Muslim dominated areas. These Muslims were mostly “lucky.” Elsewhere, in the Middle East, Western power were setting up their bases to play a game of chess, using dictators, removing them, then establishing democracy, and then getting rid of them, and then repeating the cycle. The result was a thoroughly messed up political situation and lack of sane-leaderships in the Middle East. The West consistently lost the game, but, alas, Muslims paid the price.

There is almost no fixed religious book of Hindus. They don’t have a fixed god, with literally millions of them to select from. People pick and chose—from a very wide spectrum of gods, goddesses and texts—what is convenient to them. In fact, they cherry-pick what is convenient to them at any particular situation. That makes Hindus one of the biggest rationalisers I know of. They can prove or disprove anything they want, all dependent on their personal conveniences and expediencies. Post facto they rationalize why and what they did was moral. The result is a wild-mind, lacking in discipline and integrity. On such an “operating system”, modernity and technology has done horrible things. Today, India is one giant mess, with horrible pollution, utter wretchedness, and virtually no concept of fairness.

Despite being very anecdotal, my several Hindu acquaintances have Muslim-only workers in their factories. They have minds that understand some basic concept of discipline. They mostly don’t drink. Drinking is a major problem in most of the developing world. Ironically, and contrary to what is assumed in the West, they are more respectful towards women. They are even much better at working under Hindu-women than Hindu-men are.

They might not hold much respect for women who over-sexualise themselves. But who am I to complain when I don’t hold much respect for Miley Cyrus, Paris Hilton and the sorts?

The popular culture and the big-media stop us from seeing that Muslim societies have proven themselves to be more successful than Hindu societies are. Turkey, Malaysia, and Indonesia are prime examples of countries that have become rich despite not much comparative advantage in natural resources.

A few seemingly good words about Islam does not mean that it is better than Hinduism or other humanity-killing belief systems, but merely to open ourselves to be more receptive to ideas and to understand issues without hatred and undue fear. Fear blocks rational thinking and reduces us to the same status that we might blame others for.

ISLAM

There are statistical studies that suggest that a large number of Muslims are ready to die for their religion. In reality, most people of other beliefs claim the same, particularly Jews and Americans. Even very well-educated Americans have told me that they are ready to die without thinking “for my country.” How are Muslims any different? And moreover when the occasion to die comes, not many—virtually none—wants to.

I often fly around Asian airports and know that at many putting your cabin-bag for x-ray is “optional.” This would not have been the case were Muslims ever-ready to blow planes.

Apostasy or marrying outside the community is a problem in the Islamic world, but this is no different in most of the developing world, and was a problem not too far in the past in what is now known as the West. The big media is less likely to report honor-killings outside the Islamic world with the same kind of generalization that they reserve for the Muslim world. And contrary to popular belief in the USA, there are a lot of non-Muslims living in the Middle East. Tariq Aziz, who was Saddam Hussein’s second-in-command, now in prison, is a devout Christian. Non-Muslims in Islamic countries are neither enslaved nor killed, as the popular media might imply.

When visiting a Muslim country, I am often asked, about my religion. I unabashedly tell them that I am an atheist. I often pinch myself watching American media, for according to them I should have been killed for being an “infidel.”

Islam’s biggest outside enemy is culturally Marxist feminism, and in my view the biggest reason for the bad name of Islam. Such women (and more often men, too afraid to be seen as sexist) worry too much about the fact that women in Saudi Arabia cannot drive, etc. The fact is not wrong, but their lack of understanding of the context is abysmal and almost hilarious. Most Muslim women have no problems with the status quo. What they wear is culturally ingrained and does have relevance to the local weather. Either way, societies around the world have formed and sustained not on the basis of systemic, one-sided oppression of women by men.

Of course the requirements of modesty in the Middle East might trouble the independent-minded Muslim women. But the world as we know it is run by the majority and sociopathic, including in the proud countries of the West. Any change can happen only slowly, through slow evolution, not through drone-diplomacy.

Independent thinkers in the Muslim-world who complain about what they see as cultural oppression also wouldn’t want to stay on, for they cannot change their societies soon enough. Alas, Muslim single-women cannot even get a visa to visit the West.

Muslim societies have tremendous problems. They utterly lack leadership and a process for critical examination of their beliefs, for reasons I alluded to at the beginning. I haven’t a word in defence of Islam, but the West would not have imported the consequences of those cultural problems had they not spent so much—for their own sociopathic reasons—in destabilising that region and in trying to force-feed them the currently popular values of the West.

"AMERICANISM"

One must talk about another belief system, which is dogmatic, rigid and ideological, a mutant of Christianity, which for here I will call “Americanism.”

“Amercanists” have a huge influence on America’s foreign policy, even if they are a minority. They believe their country never does any wrong. And if it does, it is always “right.” They want to shovel democracy down throat of others. If a democracy is too Islamic for their taste, they then feel happy with making it a dictatorship.

Americanists lack any understanding of rationality. They mostly don’t know much history. From them, history started in 9/11, so there is no possibility of a blow-back in their minds. If they don’t know something, it is you who is the fool.

They have mostly never been abroad, almost certainly not to a Muslim country. But for some strange reason they are extremely confident about their views (a very special characteristic of this Christian mutant). They might call themselves secular.

They will kill and maim civilians. They say that Muslim leadership sympathises with “terrorists”, for they don’t protest. Americanists cannot see that they not only do not protest what their government does—which is many times multiple of what 9/11 was—they also rationalise massacres done on an industrial scale by their own government.

How often have I found Americanists telling me their disgust about attacks by Muslims. But Americanists completely fail to see any causality, however remote, with the forever-wars and constant interference in the Middle East.

The US destroyed the stability of Iraq for no good reason. None. Even an insane person could see that Iraq, given its culture, would be worse off without Saddam Hussein. Americanists using their own logic and understanding of Islam should have seen the consequences that now exist as ISIS. Incapable for self-reflection, they will never try to understand the real source of the problem. They now want to attack the ISIS.

They truly believe that they are doing good to the world. They know exactly how other people should live, without knowing an iota about their lives. They will deliver their message through Hellfire missiles and drones. For them the way to process the world is through the big media. Twitter and Facebook memes are deep philosophy for them. They firmly believe that Muslims want to kill everyone based on some quotes in Quran. If you tell them that there is nothing special about such quotes, for the Bible has similar ones, they will rationalize it away.

They will produce stories about Muslim gangs killing non-Muslims. For them this is enough evidence—in our crazy world—to prove that Muslims are universally bad. Produce a similar event in which Christians systematically killed non-Muslims and they see it as an anomaly.

If you remind them that Christians mindlessly killed tens of millions of their own kind in the two world wars—by far the worst event than anything else in human history—they cannot see how it reflects badly on Christians.

Living vicariously through achievements of wealth-generating Americans, Americanists when cornered will “argue” that those not happy should leave the US, and cynically offering to help pack up. Their lack of understanding about the world makes it difficult for them to conceptualize that not every person who can put two words together lives in the US.

Alas, Americanism is destroying what made America great.

All this happens when our critical faculties are destroyed by the public schooling system (aka madrassas), and when indoctrinated emotions reign supreme. We then do not reason to dissect information to reach a conclusion. We then decide what we want to believe in and then post facto rationalize it. We then fall into the same trap that we blame Muslims for having fallen into.

What makes me immeasurably depressed is to be seemingly defending the self-limiting belief system of Islam, a system that cripples people’s minds at an early age. What depresses me even more is how increasingly Americans and Canadians, including the libertarian kinds, the ones I have mostly seen as my brethrens, have fallen for hysteria, making them vote for never ending-wars and meddling in the Middle East. They have fallen for the propaganda machinery of the military-industrial complex. They have fallen for the agenda of the big-media and big-government. This will indeed result in a blow-back at some point, making the US and Canada a real prison, not so much because of Muslims, but because of Americanism.

Comments? Join us at the TDV Blog.

Jayant Bhandari is constantly traveling the world to understand it and to look for investment opportunities, particularly in the natural resource sector. He advises institutional investors about his finds. He also runs a yearly seminar in Vancouver entitled "Capitalism & Morality" and is a frequent contributor to The Dollar Vigilante. Find him at http://jayantbhandari.com.

 

 

 

These Government Agencies Want You In 401(K)'s. And Here's Why.

Tue, 10/28/2014 - 14:43

[The following post is by Paul Seymour, Director of TDV Offshore]

I woke up this morning here in the communist-leaning Little Italy which is Buenos Aires, and was hoping to find something to write about, and what did I see? An article entitled - Treasury and IRS Encourage Use of Annuities in 401(k) Plans.

That’s the kind of title that just sets me to bein’ a tad skeptical. Excuse me for being a bit jaded, but these are the guys who over the past few years, have blatantly committed illegal acts, and have no qualms about lying to your elected representatives in order to try and evade prosecution, or much more likely, the proverbial slap on the wrist.

Whenever I see that Treasury is “encouraging” something, the hair on the back of my neck stands up. My first reaction is to question why unelected bureaucrats with a criminal past are interested in what citizens do with their own retirement savings to begin with. Of course we both know the answer to that, and I’m just feigning the naiveté for the sake of argument.

As I read the article it started to become clear that Treasury, with all of its obvious good intentions in mind to protect the life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness of the citizens they serve, are taking an ever-increasing stance that they are responsible to “protect” the citizenry from the possibility of making poor investment decisions. 

Statements like this, by J. Mark Iwry, senior advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Retirement and Health Policy, support my observation— “Treasury is working to expand the availability of retirement income options for working families. By encouraging the use of income annuities, today’s guidance can help retirees protect themselves from outliving their savings.” That all sounds very altruistic, but please reference the previous comments regarding the credibility of these clowns.

Notice he uses that sketchy phrase “protect themselves” while referring to a means whereby employers will make the investment decisions on behalf of their employees. In many cases, that decision will then be passed on to the custodial investment manager handling the investments. There’s a case of the fox watching the henhouse for you.

These new guidelines are geared towards, as he says “working families” who have an employer-sponsored plan. The article states – “These qualified defined contribution plans will now have the option of diverting contributions on behalf of employees into target date funds (TDF’s) which get their name from the fact that their allocation of investments shift gradually from equities to fixed income as participants approach an intended target retirement year.”

Nothing like formulating investment vehicles for “working families” which they could never possibly understand. Those equities, then, will again be selected by the custodial investment management firm, as will the annuity contracts, and their underlying assets. All, no doubt, with the best interests of the employees in mind.

The article notes that “Many employer-sponsored 401(k) plans offer so-called target date funds as a default investment for participants who do not affirmatively elect a different investment.” Clearly, all of you who are reading this little piece don’t fall into the category of the multitudes who check off the “please make these decisions for me” box on their retirement fund account management forms.

The danger, though, is that the US government (USG), acting unconstitutionally through its unelected and unaccountable revenue gathering arm, will work together with the banksters, who they’ve essentially employed in the 2008 bailout, in order to effectively take control of all retirement funds. Do I sound like I’m sitting in the corner drooling under my tin foil hat? Time will tell. 

WILL YOUR FUNDS BE STOLEN?

I can easily foresee that these default investments will one day be converted to US government bonds as the underlying investment vehicle as large corporations, in addition to the banks, start working in concert with the USG in the name of “national security”, or some such other contrived excuse. We already have Amazon working for the CIA, and Google for the NSA, PayPal apparently for the OECD (Treasury’s offshore bank police) etc. It’s not that much of a reach here.

The article goes on to state – “The letter also describes how ERISA fiduciary standards can be satisfied when a plan sponsor appoints an investment manager that selects the annuity contracts and annuity provider to pay the lifetime income.” This is the juncture at which the government gains control over the investments of those who don’t trust themselves to manage their own retirement funds.

Again, as a skeptic regarding the altruism of government agents, I foresee a continual creep in this regard. I worry about the day when Treasury decides that their pilot plan to protect the retirement income of the citizenry has been so successful that they’ve decided to extend that protection to all tax-deferred retirement accounts. For your own protection of course.

As if to give that statement some credence, I hit on another article also released today. Judge Dismisses Lawsuits against IRS by Conservative Groups Just in case you thought that any branch of the government is still working for the people, that should allay any such fears. It’s now official, the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial branches are now all acting in concert in order to shred the Constitution and take away any rights you thought you might have been born with.

DISGRACEFUL INJUSTICE

I think the title pretty much says it all about what happened. The judge said-“Unless an actual, ongoing controversy exists in this case, this Court is without power to decide it”. Under that logic, if someone, like a cop for example, killed your daughter at the mall with a bean bag gun, this sad excuse for a judge would rule that as long as she’s not still killing others, there’s nothing he can do about it under the law. She gave her solemn word never to draw another bean-bag gun going forward, so let’s just let bygones be bygones. Get over it. Yeah. That’s US style justice for you.

The article then quoted one of the plaintiffs who quite correctly summed it all up – “This ruling is offensive to every citizen who believes in equal treatment under the law,” said FreedomWorks executive vice president Adam Brandon in a statement. “It doesn't matter when the IRS bullied conservative groups or if they stopped, the point is that it was done, and the IRS has to be held accountable. Today's decision was the legalization of federal bullying and unchecked discretionary authority, so long as agencies can play the waiting game long enough to correct their misdeeds. The fact that it occurred in the first place was appalling, but the fact that it was excused by the courts was disgraceful."

Therefore don’t expect any common sense help from the courts either. Quite obviously the jack-wingtips at IRS and Treasury are going to do whatever they want to, and will never be held accountable. Your method as to how to react to that can be justified at almost any level in the face of such blatant tyranny. An offshore trust, for example, would be an excellent defensive response. We can also do a tax free rollover of your IRA or 401(k) and legally move the assets offshore and under the blanket protection of a due-process respecting jurisdiction. You will then be able to easily invest in assets outside the US Dollar, and in virtually any asset class. Precious metals or foreign real estate for example.

That’s it for today’s current events.

Hasta la próxima amigos, and here’s to living right.

Comments? Join us at The Dollar Vigilante Blog.

Paul worked for several years with Big 4 CPA firms in both the US and Saudi Arabia, and then spent many years as a multi-national corporate Controller and CFO in places like Florida, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Cairo, and Medellín. In his second, more free life, he has found a natural home in the offshore industry following almost 2 decades as a permanent expat from the former America. Contact him to learn more about the realities of economical offshore asset protection paul@tdvoffshore.com

 

$2.5 Billion Dollars Stolen From Americans By Whom? The Answer Might Shock You...

Mon, 10/27/2014 - 14:49

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor, Jeff Berwick]

The criminals in federal and local government will steal your money, even if you're a law-abiding citizen. Don't believe it? Just ask Carole Hinders (and 62,000 others), who has run a "modest" cash-only Mexican restaurant for many years. Last year two IRS agents came to her home to inform her they had stolen $33,000 from her, because she deposited less than $10,000 at a time, which the IRS viewed as an attempt to not trigger government reporting by her bank. She thought she was just doing everybody a favor. 

“How can this happen?” Ms. Hinders said in a recent interview. “Who takes your money before they prove that you’ve done anything wrong with it?”

If you've been reading our blog, you already know the answer to that question. It's the US government, and it is what they do. And it is increasing at a frightening pace.

The law permitting this was designed to catch drug traffickers, racketeers and terrorists by tracking their cash. Of course honest, hard-working people get caught up in the mix as the government targets business owners and wage earners without any criminal cases against them. 

“They’re going after people who are really not criminals,” said former federal prosecutor David Smith, now a forfeiture expert and lawyer in Virginia. “They’re middle-class citizens who have never had any trouble with the law.”

According to The New York Times,

The government can take the money without ever filing a criminal complaint, and the owners are left to prove they are innocent. Many give up.

On Thursday, in response to questions from The New York Times, the I.R.S. announced that it would curtail the practice, focusing instead on cases where the money is believed to have been acquired illegally or seizure is deemed justified by “exceptional circumstances.”

In a statement chief of Criminal Investigation at the IRS Rich Weber wrote:

“This policy update will ensure that C.I. continues to focus our limited investigative resources on identifying and investigating violations within our jurisdiction that closely align with C.I.’s mission and key priorities.”

The IRS isn't the only government agency practicing theft of people's money. Other agencies and local police forces have come under fire for the same practice.

The money is seized under a law known as civil asset forefeiture, which enables law enforcement agents to steal your things if you are a US subject. No charges need to be filed. Law enforcement agencies get to keep a share of their booty, further incentivizing them to steal. 

Weber also noted that Hinder's practice of making deposits under $10,000 at a time to evade reporting is called structuring, and is illegal regardless of where the funds originated. Depositing $10,000 is not illegal, unless it is done for the specific purpose of avoiding reporting requirements. Apparently the government doesn't need to prove you were doing this, though. 

All authorities need to steal your money is a bank statement. In a Long Island example of civil asset forfeiture, the police submitted a year's worth of deposits, ranging from $5,500 to $9.910. The officer wrote in his warrant affidavit that this pattern “is consistent with structuring.” The government stole $447,000 from the cash-intensive candy and cigarette distributor that had been run by one family for 27 years.

“My mom had told me if you keep your deposits under $10,000, the bank avoids paperwork,” one business owner said. “I didn’t actually think it had anything to do with the I.R.S.”

The candy and cigarette distributor remains a business only thanks to longtime vendors extending credit - one has extended $300,000. The government has brought settlement offers to the family requiring the family to give up an "excessive" portion of their money.

“We’re just hanging on as a family here,” Mr. Hirsch said. “We weren’t going to take a settlement, because I was not guilty.”

Another victim of civil asset forfeiture, Army Sgt. Jeff Cortazzo of Arlington, Va., wanted to save money for his daughters’ college costs amid financial crisis. He stored cash in his basement and then in a safe-deposit box.

The government seized $66,000. The settlement cost Sergeant Cortazzo $21,000.

Investigations concerning the use of federal civil forfeiture law by local law enforcement agencies across the United States to raise cash has exposed problems with a routine but rarely discussed police tactic.

Washington Post journalists gathered 43,000 reports from agencies across the United States and wrote that the budgets of police departments and drug task forces are funded by stolen assets, including property and money never involved in a crime.

“Police agencies have used hundreds of millions of dollars taken from Americans under federal civil forfeiture law in recent years to buy guns, armored cars and electronic surveillance gear,” Robert O’Harrow and Steven Rich wrote for the Post. “They have also spent money on luxury vehicles, travel and a clown named Sparkles.”

Sparkles The Clown: Funded by stolen money.

The WP journalists wrote that Freedom of Information Act requests filed by the paper provided them with a tome of documents that demonstrate police departments spend the stolen money liberally.

“The Department of Justice Asset Forfeiture Program (the Program) is a nationwide law enforcement initiative that removes the tools of crime from criminal organizations, deprives wrongdoers of the proceeds of their crimes, recovers property that may be used to compensate victims and deters crime,” reads the official DOJ guidelines. “Federal law authorizes the attorney general to share federally forfeited property with participating state and local law enforcement agencies.”

Local and state police receive up to 80% of their stolen loot. 

“Any state or local law enforcement agency that directly participates in an investigation or prosecution that results in a federal forfeiture may request an equitable share of the net proceeds of the forfeiture,” state the guidelines. “Department of Justice policy requires shared monies and property to be used for law enforcement purposes.”

The tome of documents makes the case clear: "Public servants" steal wantonly. 

“The documents offer a sweeping look at how police departments and drug task forces across the country are benefiting from laws that allow them to take cash and property without proving a crime has occurred,” the journalists stated. “The law was meant to decimate drug organizations, but The Post found that it has been used as a routine source of funding for law enforcement at every level.”

But the money was never used for wrongdoing in the first place. 

“Of the nearly $2.5 billion in spending reported in the forms, 81 percent came from cash and property seizures in which no indictment was filed, according to an analysis by The Post,” the paper reported. “Owners must prove that their money or property was acquired legally in order to get it back.

The Washington Post investigation found that 61,998 cash seizures have been made on US highways and elsewhere since September 11, 2001 worth more than $2.5 billion. Homeland Security and Justice departments received $880 million of that total, while state and local authorities got the rest.  According to the Post investigation, approximately one-sixth of the seizures are challenged in a court of law, and in 41% of the challenged cases, more than 4,000 of them, the government agreed to return all or part of the money. The appeals process often took more than a year and required owners of the cash to sign agreements not to sue local police.

[Editor's Note: In the TDV Newsletter learn ways around civil asset forfeiture. Put your money where local police thugs can't find it.]

Comments? Join us at the TDV Blog.

Jeff Berwick

Nelson Bunker Hunt, Alleged Silver Manipulator, Has Died - TDV Week in Review: October, 26 2014

Sun, 10/26/2014 - 12:20

 

Nelson Bunker Hunt has died.

He is best known for an alleged attempt to "corner the silver market" with his brothers. 

Hunt died last Tuesday in Dallas at the age of 88.
 
The 1970s were a difficult time for the US, much like today. This is, after all, the decade leading into gold and silver's big price run of 1980, known for its long lines at the pumps and the scandalous presidency of Richard Nixon.

However, perhaps history has been unkind to Mr. Hunt. He, according to some, did not see a chance to manipulate a market, but a chance to hedge against global socio-economic volatility. As Bloomberg states,

"There were the communists, the liberals, the proponents of the welfare state. If inflation didn’t rob him of his billions, the tax man would."

And so Nelson Hunt bought silver with his brothers. Wherefore?

Tim Knight, author of “Panic, Prosperity and Progress: Five Centuries of History and the Markets” (2014), writes, “Hunt had a paranoid world view and it made sense to him to amass silver and hang on to it. He was a true believer.”

Knight told Bloomberg, "Hunt chartered three 707 jet aircraft to haul the metal to warehouses in Switzerland and hired a dozen sharpshooting cowboys to provide security." That's something speculators are unlikely to do.

The Hunt brothers would go on to buy over 200 million ounces of silver by 1980. The Hunts had affected the price of silver with their staggering demand. On January 7, 1980 the Comex and the Chicago Board of Trade changed the rules, requiring higher margin requirements. The price of silver began to crash.

“They broke the ascent by basically outlawing the buying of silver,” said Knight. “Only liquidation orders would be accepted. It’s almost criminal what they did.”

On March 27, 1980, known as silver Thursday, Comex asked Bache Group, the Hunts' broker, for $134 million. Hunt was overseas so unable to act upon the request. Despite their huge silver position, the Hunt brothers did not have that money liquid. Bache had no authority but to liquidate more silver. The price of silver fell from $15.70 to $10.80 an ounce.

According to Kurt Eichenwald's "Serpent on the Rock," the Hunts liquidated oil and gas leases, real estate, coal leases, antiques, a Mercedes and a Rolex as collateral to cover their losses. They would lose it all as the price of silver tumbled.

“Twelve U.S. banks, the American branches of four foreign banks and five brokerage houses had provided the Hunts’ silver-buying venture with more than $800 million -- equivalent to almost 10 percent of all the bank lending in the country in the previous two months,” William Greider wrote in “Secrets of the Temple” (1987). The banks would ban together to loan the Hunt's money to keep them afloat as they were scared of losing out on their loans. Ultimately, everything would collapse on the Hunts, with silver crashing.

The lawsuit against the Hunts was “the most important manipulation case ever tried,” Jeffrey C. Williams, a witness for the hunts in the trial, penned in his chronicle of the lawsuit, “Manipulation on Trial” (1995).

“They never tried to corner the market,” William insists. “They bought a lot of silver. They invested, in a big way, a sloppy way. Cornering is not an accurate description.”

When his silver buying days ended in bankruptcy, Hunt quipped:“I was just trying to make some money."

Interested in silver? Check out GoldSilverBitcoin today or contact Justin at joconnell@tdvmedia.com for questions. 

Please let us know what you think in the comments.

Justin O’Connell is the Chief Executive Officer of GoldSilverBitcoin.  He is also the author of the bitcoin book, Bitcoinomics, and administrator of the Bitcoinomics website. Justin is also a co-host at Our Very Own Special Show, a lifestyle podcast about music, news, life and other topics, and head researcher at The Dollar Vigilante.  He lives in San Diego, California.

 

 

 

Before we get to the review, be sure to check out the TDV Newsletter. In it you will receive weekly advice from TDV's own Chief Editor Jeff Berwick, as well as TDV's Senior Analyst Ed Bugos, whose track record in the gold market has been stellar over the past 10+ years, even suggesting gold and silver buyers keep cash on hand over the past two-year consolidation in the monetary precious metals complex. From there you will receive interviews with expatriates and country reviews on hundreds of countries. If you sign up, you will also receive TDV's special reports, including Getting Your Gold Out Of Dodge, as well as upcoming reports on expatriation and bitcoin. This is a true value and will help you learn and understand the times in which we currently live on the financial, economic, political, technological and personal fronts.  

If you’re interested in receiving articles beyond what you read here everyday, consider our weekly subscriber-only publications, like our Issue, Dispatches, and Homegrown. You may subscribe here.

On to the review…

Monday October 20

PENTAGON FORMS MILITARY "QUICK STRIKE TEAMS" FOR DEPLOYMENT IN US

Jeff Berwick on ebola.

Under the cover of Ebola the United States looks more totalitarian, authoritarian and just plain fascist than ever.

As Zero Hedge points out, many of us were led to believe President Obama spent the weekend golfing for nearly five hours, doing nothing, while his new Ebola Czar missed crucial meetings to the safety of the nation...

continue reading...

Tuesday October 21

THE RISE OF THE TRUE LIBERTARIAN - AND THE LIBERTARIAN EVENT OF THE YEAR

Jeff Berwick on TDV's Anarchapulco.

People in the US and around the world are slowly figuring out that their systems are not "their" systems but systems placed over them to control and steal from them.  Slowly the Republican versus Democrat debate in the US is being seen more and more as a farce.  The savior, Barack Obama, is sitting at record low approval ratings, Congress approval ratings were in the single digits for much of the last year, the End the Fed movement continues to grow, support for the war of the month (ISIS) has fallen dramatically in just the last few weeks and mainstream news media ratings continue to drop off a cliff.

continue reading...

Wednesday October 22

CAN THE BLOCKCHAIN CHANGE THE WORLD?

Adil Elias on the block chain.

There’s a myth going around that whenever there’s a monopoly, and that monopoly fades away, then the service that it provides would vanish too. The reality on the other hand is the exact opposite.

If history shows us anything (except from continuous refusal of the masses to learn from it) is that most advances in human life occurred as a consequence of reducing the government’s monopolies on every aspect of our very lives. The most effective way to unleash human productivity and change the world for the better is to break free from the shackles of government.

continue reading...

Thursday October 23

THE AMERICAN DREAM IS STILL POSSIBLE, JUST NOT IN THE US

Ron Holland on the US's fall from grace and expatriation.

Although there are no firm statistics on the number of Americans living outside the US, the US State Department estimates that somewhere between 3 and 6 million Americans now live offshore. I think this is a low estimate and the number is clearly growing.

I now live in Canada but often travel back to the United States. Driving through Customs near Buffalo is usually not a big ordeal but it does involve a time-wasting delay much like visiting the post office or any other US government bureaucracy. But governments should police their borders, as this is one of the few legitimate functions of a central government.

continue reading...

Friday October 24

WOULD YOU SIGN A USER AGREEMENT WITH THE US?

User agreements. They're everywhere. If you did anything new today online, then there is a chance you had to sign a user agreement. Did you read it? If you're anything like me, then probably not.

While I deal with various companies and websites I find myself so often ignoring user agreements but signing them anyway. Apple is famous for their very long user agreements nobody reads. Most companies make you sign something if you're going to be using their services and products. Most of these agreements go unread. 

continue reading...

TDV VIDEO

This week, Jeff interviews John Potash and Cody Drummond on the Anarchast.

Have a look at our wide array of informative videos featuring interviews, opinions, and analysis on TDV’s media page.

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Remember, if you have any questions, concerns, or issues with what you've read on TDV, write us at: tdv@dollarvigilante.com.

Thanks as always for reading or subscribing!

Would You Sign A User Agreement With The US?

Fri, 10/24/2014 - 05:12

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor Jeff Berwick]

User agreements. They're everywhere. If you did anything new today online, then there is a chance you had to sign a user agreement. Did you read it? If you're anything like me, then probably not.

It might have looked like some of these

While I deal with various companies and websites I find myself so often ignoring user agreements but signing them anyway. Apple is famous for their very long user agreements nobody reads. Most companies make you sign something if you're going to be using their services and products. Most of these agreements go unread. 

Some of them are quite colorful, like this iTunes agreement. 

So just to make that clear. If you're using iTunes to make nuclear weapons, stop. 

Today, while I was checking various boxes in a recent user agreement, I wondered to myself what a user agreement with the US government (numer one terrorist organization in the world) might look like:

I agree to pay 50% of everything I earn for life to the US government.

I agree to also pay tax on money I have earned outside the country. 

I agree to not be able to leave the country if the government sees fit.

I agree to go to jail or face death penalty if the government sees fit.

I agree to any law the government decides to pass without my consent no matter the cost of my personal freedom.

I agree that the US government can spy on all my incoming and outgoing communications. 

I agree that the US government owns all my incoming and outgoing communications and can use them in anyway it pleases. 

I agree that the US government owns my body.

I agree that the US government can kill in my name. 

I agree that the US government can turn my cell phone into a geo-tracker.

I agree that I best not think or else I might find myself in trouble.

I agree that freedom is slavery.

I asked myself if I would sign such an agreement? Obviously the answer is no unless I did not read the user agreement, which is entirely possible. But what's more likely is that since government doesn't provide any useful services anyway without the need for the barrel of a gun, I would never use them. 

Individuals all over the world passively accept laws and citizenship conditions - like taxes, fines and wars - all because they were born to a particular geographical region on Planet Earth.

By the time you do realize the inherent injustice of the system you are probably already serving jail time or have thousands of dollars of debt. 

So, would you sign a user agreement with the US if they asked you to and put it like it actually is instead of hiding behind legalese and propaganda? Let us know in the comments. And after you do, please continue to check out the TDV Blog and TDV Newsletter for weekly investment and expatriation information, advice and analysis. 

Jeff Berwick

The American Dream Is Still Possible, Just Not In The US

Thu, 10/23/2014 - 05:40

[The following post is by TDV Contributor Ron Holland]

Although there are no firm statistics on the number of Americans living outside the US, the US State Department estimates that somewhere between 3 and 6 million Americans now live offshore. I think this is a low estimate and the number is clearly growing.

I now live in Canada but often travel back to the United States. Driving through Customs near Buffalo is usually not a big ordeal but it does involve a time-wasting delay much like visiting the post office or any other US government bureaucracy. But governments should police their borders, as this is one of the few legitimate functions of a central government.

Still, whenever I'm there I do notice the America I grew up in and once knew has really changed since 9/11. The trend toward a more militarized and aggressive police force continues to quicken. I know most Americans accept this as part of the consequences of the War on Terror just as they do the loss of financial privacy, increased fines and asset seizures.

The Canadian government recently warned citizens to be careful when taking cash to the US because of the risk of police taking their cash for hyped-up offenses. Did you know that in the last 13 years, over $2.5 billion has been stolen by law enforcement in almost 62,000 cash seizures? I have to say that as an American, I'm outraged at the situation and always on guard when in the USSA.

I fear many Americans who don't travel internationally might have become somewhat immune to the intrusive, arbitrary nature of today's American government and its institutions. Here in Canada, law enforcement is almost always professional and courteous and even the bureaucrats are friendly and helpful, which simply amazes me.

So to my American family, friends and business associates, I want you to know it is still possible to achieve the American Dream of a simple life with opportunity for wealth creation, fun, freedom and good times without an overly intrusive, threatening government ... just not in the United States. Many other nations, in Central and South America and elsewhere, certainly also experience corruption and inefficiencies but government threats remain outside of everyday life for most citizens and expats.

Following are a few things I've noticed recently pertaining to international real estate and lifestyle decisions many people are considering, ranging from a new presidential executive order to mouth-watering Austrian chalets.

I mention the latest presidential executive order not because it concerns your lifestyle or real estate but because this is how you are likely to lose more liberties, have your gold confiscated or your bank safe deposit box frozen during a future real or contrived crisis. Roosevelt used this governmental tool to illegally confiscate private gold in 1933 and there is no immediate defense or remedy to a presidential executive order. Yes, Congress can act over time but exactly how this would help after the fact is a question no one can answer.

When retiring overseas, many countries require a minimum pension or retirement income in order receive the coveted benefits of expat retirement and your Social Security benefits can be all or part of this package. Therefore, leaving the US does not mean you lose your "promised but not guaranteed" Social Security benefits ... at least not until Congress starts to "means test" Social Security in order to end benefits to the wealthy and middle class. It is possible to continue to receive your benefits. Read more here.

A couple of weeks ago I was flying back to Canada from a Casey Research conference in historic San Antonio, TX. The American Airlines flight magazine had an excellent article on the radical transformation of Colombia from a crime haven to a tourist haven and now the toast of South America. I have visited Colombia several times recently and you must put this exciting country on your bucket list for a visit. Read about it in "A Radical Transformation."

I don't have a compulsive bone in my body except for being on time and I unrealistically expect everyone else to be on time. This is a minor problem for me in the United States, Canada or Europe – other than in Switzerland where everyone and everything is done in a timely manner. But in Central and South America, nothing happens by the clock. This is something potential expats and others considering living in Latin cultures will want to be aware of. While this article focuses on Ecuador, it provides excellent insight into the entire region.

The Colombia economy is booming and is viewed increasingly by international investment managers as a good candidate for global diversification. The earlier long years of political upheaval and guerilla violence means that much of the reserves of this resource rich country including oil, gold and coal have not been explored and the reserves are still unaccounted for. Read what the NASDAQ has to say about the country at "Colombia Represents A New Vision in South America."

Of course, going offshore isn't restricted to the lower cost, tropical venues of Central and South America. Some people may enjoy the opportunities for cold weather sports and the history of a wonderful country like Austria. Think of Austria as similar to Switzerland or Germany but a place where locals and visitors alike have a lot more fun. While Austrian real estate is not a bargain as it still is in South America, compared to Switzerland it is an excellent value. Here are a few chalets to tempt your wandering eye.

The opportunities still available are truly amazing and I encourage you to takes steps to ensure your lifestyle and wealth now, while you can.

[Editor's Note: We cover up-and-coming countries, regions and global markets in the TDV Newsletter. At TDV Offshore create a wealth management strategy so you can experience that American Dream, wherever it may be.]

Join the discussion at The Dollar Vigilante today.

This article originally appeared at The Daily Bell.

Ron Holland is the author of several books, including The Threat to the Private Pension System, Escape the Pension Trap, and most recently, Restoring Our American Legacy, as well as numerous special reports and hundreds of articles on investment and political topics, many focusing on the interplay between politics and the investment markets. Selections of his essays can be found in the archives of TheDailyBell.com and LewRockwell.com.

Can The Blockchain Change The World?

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 04:58

[Editor's Note: The following post is by TDV Latin America Editor-in-Chief, Adil Elias]

"The most effective way to change the system is not from within, not even by a violent revolution, but by inventing a new system that makes the old one obsolete." - Unknown Author

STATE MONOPOLIES ARE BAD FOR YOUR SOUL

There’s a myth going around that whenever there’s a monopoly, and that monopoly fades away, then the service that it provides would vanish too. The reality on the other hand is the exact opposite.


If history shows us anything (except from continuous refusal of the masses to learn from it) is that most advances in human life occurred as a consequence of reducing the government’s monopolies on every aspect of our very lives. The most effective way to unleash human productivity and change the world for the better is to break free from the shackles of government.

Remember that ending the government absolute monopoly on agriculture was the reason behind the which all of those considerable advances in agriculture were obtained. It was the direct cause behind most breakthroughs in agriculture such as irrigation systems, fertilizers, machinery and the subsequent lowering of people involved in agriculture form 70 percent to almost 3 percent, with a much greater productivity mind you...not to mention the substantial improvement in the human condition by not enslaving black folks anymore.

The fact that there has been more material progress in the world in the 20th century than in the entire world in all previous centuries combined is no product of coincidence, nor fate for that matter, but rather a direct consequence of losing a few shackles from the government: females joining the work force, the sexual revolution, the civil disobedience against racism… The things you can achieve when you are not busy fighting with each other. Let’s look at what we gained from the abdication of government’s say on whether women should be allowed to work or not. Once the states say on the matter was finally eradicated, life on earth became immediately better. 

The government in its infinite wisdom - and by infinite wisdom I mean its systematically wrong rationale - deemed that half of the population should be confined to sit around and just cook and clean, because well… they have lady parts. The worst part of that is that this isn’t even scratching the surface, because if you open any history book you will soon find out that before we’ve lost the heavy shackles of the gov’t say on whether the female population should be “allowed” to work or not, the main fight was about their “right” to choose a spouse. You heard it right, all throughout the centuries sociopaths –I mean “noble” government people- loved to force one half of the population to a lifetime rape sentence based of course on the wise and reasonable criteria of...wait for it… Being born with the “wrong” genetalia.

The state is extremely coherent with those parameters. (and this is important because the state is never coherent) They use accident of birth as a parameter in literally everything, slavery, monarchies, borders… You name it. The world keeps changing but to them the parameters remain the same, they still use them to divide and conquer – I mean impart justice and virtue. But what happens? Well, what usually happens and by usually I mean every single freakin’ time is that we discover that the government was wrong YET AGAIN.  

YOU HAVE A CHOICE

You have a choice right here, right now in 2014: do you support Bitcoin, digital currencies, the Blockchain, Bitnation… etc.? Or do you feel that you are more on the side of central banks, the Federal Reserve, waiting for hours in a government buildings for authorization paper? (Change the word “hours” for the word “years” if you’re gay and want to get married, or even the word “never” depending on the “accident of birth” thingy)

Which side do you fall on? A) On the voluntary interaction among peers? Or B) Do you believe that coercion is the way to go? "But what can I do to reduce my interactions to government coercion? It’s not like some digital currencies would just pop up from the sky to undermine the power of central banks, it’s not like you can get married via the Blockchain, right?" Well, I hate to quote Obama, but: Yes you can! You can and you should support these things, and any voluntary system of human interaction, because voluntary trumps force every time. If your answer was B then please stop reading this article. 

Asking coercive authority to rule with reason and sound judgment is like asking a bulldozer to be an architect. You may change the century, but politicians won't tell the truth if their life depended on it. 6,000 years later there is yet a single political promise to be fulfilled (except for “I have two drones for you”) and yet we still trust the most dishonest conniving sweet-talkers to “rule” over us, which is like having a baby and interviewing 43 different babysitters for the job and ending up hiring a dingo. How we still trust politicians to decide important matters is something I will never understand, and quite frankly that’s part of the reason I refuse to believe in extraterrestrial life, because what would that make of us as a species? The joke of the universe? The clowns of the Milky Way?  “Look at these Planet Earth people, can you believe they still rely on bureaucrats?”

Keeping in mind that all the advances we achieved as a species occurred as a consequence of breaking free from government monopolies, and all the pain and suffering like wars, inflation, corruption, opression, spying and so on were caused by government, do you see now why I support peer-to-peer technologies?

BITNATION

When I saw how Bitnation and similar Blockchain technologies could make the government bureaucracy look like a chariot compared to a Lamborghini, it caught my attention.

It goes without saying that I’m a big fan of peer-to-peer technology, the voluntary aspect of Bitnation is another thing that had won me over, take the gay marriage Non-issue for example and how governments are still to date forbidding people to get married just because they are attracted to the same sex individuals, this is something that is hard to explain to civilized people, even more mind-blowing is watching some part of the population asking for the government to enforce these bans and to restrict other people’s freedoms. I can’t help but ask myself how much of a sucker can you possibly be to degrade yourself to such an extent to start rooting for the government to subject gay people? Even if I were the biggest loser on the planet, I’d probably just think “cool, then there’s gonna be more chicks for me”, so seriously, how much of a bigot can you be to buy in those artificial divisions? Even Aristotle’s neighbor knew that that was vulgarism, and he used to be the Ancient Greek version of a Proctologist . At some point people will realize that they should let go of the state because the state will never let go of barbarism.

Luckily, with Blockchain technology you can get married right away, no bigotry, no prejudice no superstition… Just voluntary interactions.

Honey, this love is so good we gotta get the government involved” - Doug Stanhope

Human happiness and well being is way too valuable to be to be left in the hands of the state. In some places of the world, the state still has a say on whether women should have a “right” to choose a spouse or not.  In Pakistan for example they still stone women to death, I repeat stone humans to death, or bury them alive for daring to choose their spouse. Coincidently, Pakistan never seems to appear in “the best countries to live” list. I guess those people don’t read much, or how else would they let their government steal so much power?

But if those people were to learn from history then they would quickly realize that what usually happens by breaking state monopolies is that the quality of life increases dramatically time and time again, history keeps showing us that once we broke the government’s monopoly on marriage, great things came with love because as it turned out when people have the freedom to pursue whoever they feel attracted to and experience love, passion, joy and happiness, they can be pretty creative, and certainly much more productive. So once again the state was wrong, criminally wrong, as it turns out forced rape was not the way to go. Who could have figured right?

BLOCKCHAIN NOT BORDERS

Borders, the physical enforcement of the delusional belief that you should forgive all the horrific evils that people born in the same region as you commit against the innocents of the world, because well... They were born in the same region as you, that and because they go overseas to protect some flag they pretend has magical powers, powers so great that they even swear allegiance to it, to a freakin'piece of fabric. 

"I hate patriotism, I can't stand it... It's a round world the last time I checked"- Bill Hicks.

Borders and nationalism is the glue that sticks all statist insanities together. If you stop reminiscing about those presumed tales of military glories of centuries past, and start seeing humans as humans no matter the fence they were born into, then you’ll realize that sooner or later those last gov’t shackles will too be broken. We’ve gone over many statist artificial divisions over the centuries white/black, male/female, gay/straight… Now we have South of the border/North of the border, sooner or later we will get over those too, because you can’t keep people delusional forever and with the advances of technology that we are blessed with, I bet it’s gonna be sooner rather than later.

On that subject, Susanne Tarkowski Tempelhof, the C.E.O of Bitnation is trying to bring some services to some of the poor countries of the world through Blockchain technology, services that the people who live in those areas would have a hard time receiving otherwise, simply because they were born in the “wrong” country. That in my mind is revolutionary, so I wish her the best of successes. Why should accident of birth be a limiting agent in life? And kudos to anyone doing something about it.

When I personally met Susanne for the first time, here in Rio de Janeiro, I noticed that she was a doer in all the sense of the word. I understood quickly why she went to Afghanistan for example and other places where many people wouldn’t dare to go. It's because she is one of these people we call 'Doers'… Finally, time has arrived for a Blockchain technology that takes the few services that the government provide and renders them obsolete.

Before Bitnation she was already creating “The Googlement Project” which seemed like a brilliant idea about structures of governing platforms which one of its purposes enabled those who wish to be governed to remain governed leaving the rest of us alone at the same time, giving the perfect answer to "What if some people want to be governed?"... So you see, she is consistent with her goals which by the way I believe are similar to the goals that many of you share, because at the end of the day, fewer things can be more revolutionary than trying to come up with new alternatives to end government monopolies. That’s why I support Bitnation, the concept behind it, and also all the other Blockchain innovators, if there is a time for the freedom-minded people of the world to get together and support each other, this it. Maybe glory will be finally achieved, maybe not, the beauty lies in the road that we take, the outcome is the bonus, how rewarding would it be? Nobody knows, but one thing is for sure, there is no glory in the in-fighting. Can the Blockchain save the world? I don’t know for sure, but one thing I do know is that we live in a hell of an era. This is probably the most interesting time in human history to live and it’s gonna be a hell of a ride.

And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.” - Friedrich Nietzsche

[Editor's Note: The Dollar Vigilante Latin America is a top informational source for Latin America news, insights and information.] 

Have questions or comments? Join us at TDV!

Adil Elias is the Editor-in-Chief of The Dollar Vigilante Latin America (TDVLA) and is the Rio de Janeiro group moderatoraelias@dolarvigilante.com. After living in several different countries, he finally based himself in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil seeking a relaxed environment away from all the large numbers of increasingly stressed people in Europe, without missing on the happy vibe and the laidback beach culture the city of Rio de Janeiro has to offer.

 



 

The Rise of the True Libertarian - and The Libertarian Event of the Year

Tue, 10/21/2014 - 16:04

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor, Jeff Berwick]

People in the US and around the world are slowly figuring out that their systems are not "their" systems but systems placed over them to control and steal from them.  Slowly the Republican versus Democrat debate in the US is being seen more and more as a farce.  The savior, Barack Obama, is sitting at record low approval ratings, Congress approval ratings were in the single digits for much of the last year, the End the Fed movement continues to grow, support for the war of the month (ISIS) has fallen dramatically in just the last few weeks and mainstream news media ratings continue to drop off a cliff.

The grand majority still don't see the full extent of the problem.  Many figure these systems just need to be "fixed" but the point they are missing, and will soon realize, is that the political, financial, monetary and central banking systems themselves are inherently anti-freedom and anti-prosperity.  Unfortunately, many won't realize it until they've all collapsed.

In the meantime libertarianism, anarcho-capitalism and Austrian economics are growing in popularity worldwide.  While still relatively small they are growing nearly exponentially as the internet gives people access to information they have been shielded from for decades if not centuries or millennia.

Slowly the philosophy and ideas of libertarianism began to take root.  

A true libertarian is, by definition, an anarchist.  "Libertarianism" is defined as a political philosophy that upholds liberty as its principal objective. Libertarians seek to maximize autonomy and freedom of choice, emphasizing political freedom, voluntary association and the primacy of individual judgment.

The word "libertarian" was mostly an unknown word even a decade ago.  A small but passionate group of individuals kept the meaning of the word and the philosophy behind it alive.  Then came Ron Paul first in 2008 and then even stronger in 2012 to spread the message of liberty... a word and philosophy mostly forgotten in the US for decades.  

And then, this year, on CSPAN, the word "anarchy" finally started to become understood for what it meant - a philosophy of not wanting others to violently rule over you and not wanting to violently rule over others when Ron Paul was asked about whether anarchy was a good thing.  He responded, "I think this is a great idea!"

On Fox News, one of the anchors even proudly proclaimed he was an anarcho-capitalist.

The modern libertarians are being boistered by a constantly growing segment of the youth who, for whatever reason, have rationally looked around, seen the system doesn't work and is inherently flawed, and are building an entirely new decentralized, peaceful and voluntary world... without permission!

Now a growing group of people, worldwide, are rethinking and reinventing everything. From money, like bitcoin and a plethora of cryptocurrencies, to decentralized platforms that look set to create a secure new internet and completely negate the need for a centralized legal system to new ways of parenting and education outside of the boundaries of strict government schools to 3-D printed guns and on and on...

R. Buckminster Fuller said, "“You never change things by fighting the existing reality.  To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” 

And with Austrian economics groundings and a deep understanding of the power for humanity of libertarian philosophies put into action many are creating a New World Order.  But this wasn't the one George H.W. Bush expected nor can he stop it.

And so, now is the time to create an event where many of the world's best and brightest in the libertarian movement can meet, exchange ideas and have a lot of fun... and outside of the Empire... a sort of anti-Bilderberg.  A place where, out in the open, world non-domination plans to free the human race from their chains can coalesce.

And have a good time, on the beach in Mexico, at the same time.  

Now is the time for Anarchapulco!

ANARCHAPULCO - RETHINK _REINVENT __ALL THE THINGS

It mostly started as an idea years ago.  After going to many freedom related conferences in the US I would constantly ask, "Why would you have a freedom conference in one of the least free places on Earth?"

And then, after being asked countless times "What's it like to live in Acapulco?" I decided the time was right to hold a festival/conference on the beach in one of the most beautiful bays in the world... and in late February, no less, at a time when much of the world will be experiencing the effects of Al Gore's "Global Warming" which has seen record cold temperatures and the largest amount of icepack in Antarctica right now since modern records have been kept.

I am thrilled to officially announce Anarchapulco today.  You'll be hearing a lot more about it so I won't go into too much detail right now.  But here are just a few of the highlights:

Rethink Conferences.  Anarchapulco will be held from February 27th to March 1st, 2015.  There will also be numerous add-on workshops in the days prior to the official opening of the conference.  As well, it will also have true libertarian musical acts in the evenings poolside on the beach including Rob Hustle of "Call the Cops" in a 24/7 city that never sleeps, has no closing times, no restrictions on any substances for personal use and is known worldwide for its nightlife.

Rethink Entrepreneurialism.  The leading-edge entrepreneur cultivation group, Exosphere, will be having a two day boot camp called Exobase on February 24th and 25th at Anarchapulco.  Exobase is an intensive 2-day introspective journey about your life, options, and calling, while providing a set of practical philosophies and tools to navigate your path as you take your next steps.  In short, if you want to learn some of the most important skills in starting up successful businesses in just two days - what you would likely not even learn in business college in two years - this is where you start.

Rethink Parenting and Education.  Most libertarians, given any choice whatsoever, wouldn't send their kids to government public schools to be vaccinated, forced to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and risk their 5 year old child being forced to sign a no-kill/no-suicide contract if the child even makes a gun shape with her crayon and says "pew pew".  Homeschooling is popular with libertarians but the world's leading expert on unschooling, Dayna Martin, takes it one big step further.  Dayna has been inspiring others for over a decade by sharing her experience through natural birth, attachment parenting and Unschooling.  She is an activist,  educator and author of, "Radical Unschooling: A Revolution Has Begun", and her newest book, "Sexy Birth".  This has allowed thousands of other parents to learn about Unschooling and to proudly live their lives without fear.   She's been all over the media including Dr. Phil, CNN, Nightline, Australia’s most popular morning news program, The Jeff Probst Show, ABC’s hit show, Wife Swap, Fox News and 60 Minutes Australia.  Dayna will be giving a one-day workshop on all of the above and more on February 26th.  Countless families wonder how they can improve the life and the health of their family and this workshop could positively change their lives dramatically.

Rethink Media.  Luke Rudkowski, founder of We Are Change, one of the most famous and cutting edge independent media brands and personalities will also be giving a one-day Change Media University Bootcamp also on February 26th.  We Are Change has successfully exposed the hypocrisies of Henry Kissinger, Ben Bernanke, Joe Biden, Mitt Romney, Jacob Rothschild, Mayor Bloomberg, Larry Silverstein, and the Rockefeller family. It reaches millions of people, operating on a shoestring budget while effecting laws, vindicating people who were falsely charged, creating national debates, and awareness on issues that would have never seen the light of day.  Change Media University’s mission is to create a new generation of journalists, unafraid of institutionalized authority, unafraid to challenge the status quo and preconceived notions.  If you want to get into independent media on the internet there is no greater teacher than Luke Rudkowski.

ReThink Defense and Privacy.  Cody Wilson, the inventor of the first 3-D printed gun, founder of Dark Wallet and now a founder of the popular 3-D gun printer, Ghost Gunner will be on hand to discuss creating new ways to make the state and its regulations obsolete.

ReInvent Politics.  Tim Moen, the leader of the Canadian Libertarian Party, and known as the "Ron Paul of Canada" will discuss how he hopes to decentralize government from the inside and bring peace and prosperity through the political process.  Tim, like many past Libertarian party leaders in Canada is a philosophical anarchist.

ReInvent Money.  A large part of the bitcoin community will be on hand at Anarchapulco including all the main players in the Mexican and Latin American bitcoin community including Jose Rodriguez, the partner of Unisend, the Latin American Bitcoin Exchange and Rafael Rodriguez,  a major venture capitalist in the bitcoin space and founder of Emericor.

ReInvent Governance.  Susanne Tarkowski Tempelhof of Bitnation will talking about Bitnation which aims to provide the same services provided by traditional governments, but in a geographically unbound, decentralized, and voluntary way.

...And that is just a sampling of groundbreaking and world changing speakers, artists and ideas that will be on display at Anarchapulco.  Others already confirmed include Angela Keaton of Antiwar.com, Orion Martin, creator of the Sidekik police-state protection app and Redmond Weissenberger, founder of the Mises Institute of Canada will also be speaking at the event.

The crazy thing is that we are just getting started.  Countless big name anarchists will be added in the coming weeks and months with some big announcements to come.

And, of course, for TDV readers and subscribers many from the TDV team will be there including Chief Researcher, Justin O'Connell and representatives from many TDV related companies including TDV Passports, TDV Offshore and TDV Wealth Management.  

It will be an amazing meeting of the minds that already has attendees coming from Europe, South America, Australia, Asia and, of course, many from North America.

For more information check out the website at www.anarchapulco.com and enter your email there to be kept abreast of news as it comes out and "like" Anarchapulco's Facebook page to also be kept in the loop.

We'll hope to see many of you down here!

Have any questions about Anarchapulco? Ask us at TDV! 

Jeff Berwick

Pentagon Forms Military "Quick Strike Teams" For Deployment In US

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 06:20

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor, Jeff Berwick]

Under the cover of Ebola the United States looks more totalitarian, authoritarian and just plain fascist than ever. 

As Zero Hedge points out, many of us were led to believe President Obama spent the weekend golfing for nearly five hours, doing nothing, while his new Ebola Czar missed crucial meetings to the safety of the nation...

The truth of the matter is much different. Those cliques truly in charge of the nation worked behind closed doors, and closely with the military. Ebola has more-or-less been exposed as a live drill in which the media, the military and other branches of government have coordinated to introduce the notion that, just like in the cinema, the military and the healthcare system are conjoined at the hip, and the military will be deployed in numerous scenarios nationwide. The Obama Administration will not only send troops into Africa to stop Ebola, but also into the US. The US will get so-called "quick-strike teams."

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From CNN:

The U.S. military is forming a 30-person "quick-strike team" equipped to provide direct treatment to Ebola patients inside the United States, a Defense Department official told CNN's Barbara Starr on Sunday.

A Pentagon spokesman later confirmed portions of the official's information.

The team will be under orders to deploy within 72 hours at any time over the next month, the official said.

The Department of Health and Human Services requested the military team, and the Pentagon has given verbal approval, the official said.

The team will include five doctors, 20 nurses and five trainers, Pentagon press secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby said in a statement.

The Pentagon has been working to determine what assistance it could offer the civilian health care sector following a White House meeting last week during which President Barack Obama said he wanted a more aggressive response, according to two Defense officials...

...Jacoby is already working with the military on the joint team, Kirby said, and once formed, it will head to Fort Sam Houston in Texas for up to seven days of training in infection control and personal protective equipment. The training, provided by the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, will begin "within the next week or so," Kirby said.

Posse Comitatus, you say? That was subverted years ago!

As we've covered here at TDV Blog, the US mainstream media has prepared you for strike teams. That is, at least, if you've seen the movie Andromeda Strain.
 

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On Monday Pentagon press secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby dismissed the Constitution and Posse Comitatus.

“We actually do have the legal authority to do this,” Kirby told Morning Joe. “This is nothing more than potential support, and I stress, potential support to civilian medical authorities if and only if they ask for that.”

“This isn’t going to violate Posse Comitatus,” he continued.

Posse Comitatus has been long for the dustbin of history. At least that's what the military itself thinks.

“It is time to rescind the existing Posse Comitatus Act and replace it with a new law,” retired Col. John R. Brinkerhoff stated in the December, 2009 issue of the Journal of Homeland Security.

“Things have changed a lot since 1878, and the Posse Comitatus Act is not only irrelevant but also downright dangerous to the proper and effective use of military forces for domestic duties.”

As we wrote last week,  the advice found within these pages at The Dollar Vigilante can generally be applied to the Ebola crises. First and foremost, if you are near the US border, now might be a good time to get out of your already Constitution Free Zone.  Come to Mexico.  (The chances of a quick strike team kidnapping you from your home is like .00001% here) I will be starting The Health Vigilante in the coming months. That will be a hub of valuable information for vigilantes all over the world. 

TDV specializes in internationalizing the livelihoods of North Americans.  I really hope it's not too late for those who haven't left yet, but every single day things get stranger. In the TDV Newsletter we cover an assortment of topics including economics and finance, but not limited to these topics. We talk to expatriates from all over the world about their experiences, their livelihoods and life after North America. The insights of the modern John Galt's is valuable, and help people every day make the tough decision to get out of dodge. 

What do you think of the "quick strike teams?" Let us know in the comments. 

Jeff Berwick

The Home Of Central Banking Embraces Bitcoin - TDV Week In Review: October 19, 2014

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 13:31

The Netherlands, and specifically Amsterdam, has, in recent history, been known for its marijuana culture. But now, the birthplace of the world's first stock exchange and central bank, is becoming home to banks with an open mind about bitcoin.

Big banks in China and the US are avoiding bitcoin ventures, although some of hinted otherwise. Dutch banks, contrarily, are embracing bitcoiners as potential customers. National regulators are not cracking down on bitcoiners like in other nations and bitcoiners are noticing. Major bitcoin startups from around the world are setting up shop in Amsterdam.

For those interested in the history of central banking, the Netherlands' interest in bitcoin is underscored by that it is home to the world's first central bank - the Bank of Amsterdam. Found in 1609, the bank was the first public bank to offer accounts not directly convertible to coin as a response to the chaotic economic environment of the time.

According to Mark Buitenhek, ING Groep NV (INGA)'s global head of transaction services, "customers want change, and that change could be bitcoin."

"We are very expressly looking at what it is, what it can do and, mostly, what the message behind it is," Buitenhek said at a conference. "And that tells us: Banks, take action." ING is the Netherland's largest bank by total assets.

Dutch regulators, like many nation-states, have warned about the risks of using bitcoins. But the authorities in the Netherlands have also looked into the crypto-currencies potential.

"They are willing to let this technological experiment unfold," Jeroen Blokland said in an interview. At the same time, authorities are warning anyone who wants to use it as an investment to "be careful, be very careful."

Bitcoin businesses are choosing Amsterdam over Europe's more traditional tech hot spots like London and Berlin. BitPay, based in Atlanta, Georgia, has opened an office in the Netherlands, while BitFury, a startup that manufactures equipment for the bitcoin network, plans on basing major operations in Netherlands as well.

The Netherlands is home to about 5 percent of all bitcoin "nodes" - a source of computing power for the network that authenticates transactions. This is not far behind rates for Germany, Britain, Canada and France, and is more than China. The original bitcoin client software - Bitcoin QT - has been downloaded in the Netherlands nearly 130,000 times, one of the highest rates in the world on a per-capita basis.

Kim Gunnik, a policy officer for innovation and cybersecurity at the Dutch central bank, said the regulator believes companies could "learn something from virtual currencies" like bitcoin.

"Technological innovations in the financial industry and in payment traffic can entail huge opportunities and large benefits for society," Gunnink said.

The central bank downplayed the notions that bitcoin could replace legal tender - the euro -  in an official statement on virtual currencies on May 8.

ABN Amro is one bank that has taken the bitcoin community aboard. Paul Iske, head of the bank's innovation center, said virtual currencies are "to some extent a Black Swan."

"We're not excluding them," and the bank will assess each proposition separately, he said. "That's the kind of bank we want to be."

Bitcoin enthusiasts nonetheless face resistance in the Netherlands, as the country is already part of a European payment system, and banks power a popular and cheap online direct-debiting system.

"The Netherlands is among the absolute front runners," ING's Buitenhek said. "I think we will be and remain pioneers, just as bitcoin is rising very rapidly here compared to other countries."

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Bitcoin Boulevard

Amsterdam is even home to a "Bitcoin Boulevard." That's right. At 17:57 on March 20th - the start of spring in the Netherlands - all of the businesses along two canada-side streets in the city center began accepting bitcoin; that is, nine restaurants and one art gallery.

Unofficially the two streets running along the canal – Bierkade and Groenewegje – will also change their name to ‘Bitcoin Boulevard’.

Of the restaurants accepting bitcoin, one is a beer hall with more than 160 beers, one's a cafe and one's a vegetarian restaurant.  The M Restaurant will also be holding a daily bitcoin 'happy hour', when all guests paying with the digital currency receive a discount.

[Editor's Note: Jeff Berwick and Justin O'Connell are putting the finishing touches on a Bitcoin Report which will be available first to TDV subscribers here.]

Insights or comments? Let us know!

Justin O’Connell is the Chief Executive Officer of GoldSilverBitcoin.  He is also the author of the bitcoin book, Bitcoinomics, and administrator of the Bitcoinomics website. Justin is also a co-host at Our Very Own Special Show, a lifestyle podcast about music, news, life and other topics, and head researcher at The Dollar Vigilante.  He lives in San Diego, California.

 

 

   

Before we get to the review, lets look at what was in the latest edition of TDV Newsletter. First, Jeff Berwick had a look at the stock market and its recent volatility, while Ed Bugos did the same and looked at the future of gold. Next, Justin O’Connell wrote on Bitcoin wallet security, and James Guzman interviewed Jonathon Lockwood. Next, as he does in all of our subscriber publications, Jeff rounded up absurdities of statism from around the globe. 

If you’re interested in receiving articles beyond what you read here everyday, consider our weekly subscriber-only publications, like our Issue, Dispatches, and Homegrown. You may subscribe here.

On to the review…

Monday October 13

THE FAPPENING, THE SNAPPENING AND THE END OF PRIVACY

Jeff Berwick on internet privacy in the age of the fappening and the snappening.

Many of my views, which just a few years ago were considered radical, have gone mainstream. I predict that my views on the Fappening and the Snappening, which right now might be unorthodox, will also be more accepted in the coming years. While a few years ago I was considered by many colleagues to be a tinfoil hat wearer, many of them come to me today to learn about ways around the ubiquitous, governmental spy networks. They all feel the same way I do about it. 

continue reading…

Tuesday October 14

ARE YOU A FASCIST?

Jeff on what might be your true political orientation. 

You might scoff at the question, "Are you a fascist?" But you should give yourself more credit. Mussolini defines "fascist" quite simply: "Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power."

So, after all, maybe you are a fascist. Here, let me explain. There are countless examples of fascism in everyday American life.

continue reading…

Wednesday October 8

YES, WE CAN! OPPOSE THE STATE...BUT BE CAREFUL 'HOW'

Wendy McElroy on opposing the state and its consequences

You can't fight City Hall. This is propaganda issued by City Hall – government and bureaucrats – to discourage those who would dissent, rebel or resist. “Nothing can be done to change the situation,” they declare, “so nothing should be attempted.”

continue reading…

Thursday October 9

THE EBOLA POLICE AND WARFARE STATE

On ebola and its response...

While we aren't surprised it is still with amazement how easily many people can be whipped into a frenzy of fear.  After all, two years ago, if you were to say to a person the two words, "ISIS" and "Ebola" they would have no reaction whatsoever.  In fact, they wouldn't even know what you were talking about in regards to ISIS as it didn't even exist at that time in its current form (it existed as the Israeli Secret Intelligence Service for decades before that but hardly anyone knew about it). 

continue reading…

Friday October 10

PREPARED FOR THE DOLLAR COLLAPSE? THEN YOU ARE PREPARED FOR EBOLA.

Jeff's continued coverage of ebola...

We write regularly here at The Dollar Vigilante about the collapse of the dollar and the US economic system. We spend less time on possible epidemics and other issues, but what we've found throughout the years is that preparing for the collapse of a currency is very much like preparing for an ebola outbreak or other epidemic.

continue reading…

TDV VIDEO

This week, Jeff interviews John Potash and Cody Drummond on the Anarchast.

Have a look at our wide array of informative videos featuring interviews, opinions, and analysis on TDV’s media page.

TDV SERVICES

Don't forget, TDV is much more than a newsletter.  We also offer many of the solutions to the problems we identify in the letter to help people internationalize their self and wealth to protect themselves from The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI). Check out all our services designed to help you gain more freedom in your life here:

Remember, if you have any questions, concerns, or issues with what you've read on TDV, write us at: tdv@dollarvigilante.com.

Thanks as always for reading or subscribing!

TDV Interview: School Sucks Podcast

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 11:42

Traveler, entrepreneur and financial writer Jeff Berwick joins Brett Veinotte off the School Sucks podcast to continue a new series where I talk to people I admire about their successes, challenges and habits. Jeff is the host of Anarchast and the creator of the financial newsletter, The Dollar Vigilante.

Part 1:

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Part 2:

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Anarchast: The Peacekeeper App

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 11:23

Jeff interviews Cody Drummond, developer of the revolutionary Peacekeeper App, topics include: the Peacekeeper App, the police state, collapse of the empire, home security networking with friends, neighbors and family, police can't get there quick enough, neighborhood watch, fire fighting, medical emergency, free market solutions, Acapulco police strike, Bitcoin and much more.

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Prepared For The Dollar Collapse? Then You Are Prepared For Ebola.

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 06:16

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor, Jeff Berwick]

We write regularly here at The Dollar Vigilante about the collapse of the dollar and the US economic system. We spend less time on possible epidemics and other issues, but what we've found throughout the years is that preparing for the collapse of a currency is very much like preparing for an ebola outbreak or other epidemic.

There's a lot of disinformation when it comes to ebola, but surviving such an outbreak comes down to certain fundamentals. For one, don't trust your government.  Individuals generally let their spirit be broken and turn to government because they perceive government is somehow better at solving problems than individuals spontaneously self-organizing. Many individuals don't ever look at the people put in charge of keeping them safe. If they did that more often, they wouldn't feel nearly as secure as they do.

One does not need to look any further than the White House Homeland Security adviser Lisa Monaco, who was recently discussed as possibly being named the person in charge of coordinating the government's response to the Ebola outbreak.  Or as many in the government have put it, the "Ebola Czar".  Forgetting for a moment that the word "czar" originally came from the word "Caesar" (which makes sense since the US is today's Rome) and that it used to be a term for Russian monarchs (which also makes sense since the US is also going the way of the Soviet Untion),  she has no professional medical expertise. Earlier this month she assured the public that the government would have no trouble stemming the tide of Ebola.

“We know how to do this, and we will do it again,” Monaco said at a press briefing.

She was speaking like a president in no time.

“It’s very important to remind the American people that the US has the most capable health-care system and the most capable doctors in the world, bar none," she said.  Which may or may not be true and is certainly debatable... but the point is that those most "capable doctors" are the result of the private market... one in which she appears to be taking some sort of credit for.

Ultimately, Monaco did not get the job. Another, even more inexperienced individual got it: Ron Klain. How will Ron save you from ebola? Well, he might not be too sure, but he at least has some lawyer and political experience, so everything will probably be just fine.

It's quite interesting to take note that most of the US government's response so far has been to send troops to Africa, SWAT teams to hospitals and hire non-medical people more experienced with controlling populations than with any medical experience.  It looks more like the US war machine is going to war both abroad and at home on a virus (more on that below). 

Getting back to the ways of the government, putting inexperienced people in positions of high authority is one of the things government does best. Just look at Belgium's "health" minister.

Now, we are not saying that she shouldn't be considered for the welfare job position (she is paid from extorting others) of using violent force (government) to make sure they are healthy by macro-managing their lives.  What we are saying is that if Gold's Gym were to hire their VP of BodyBuilding, she would likely be pretty quickly glossed over for the job.  But, that's the problem with the private/free market, isn't it? That'd be inequality!   

Americans should feel quite comfortable amid an ebola epidemic, as their media has ensured they are prepared.

EBOLA IN AMERICAN MEDIA

Media has made much to do about the ebola virus and how the world is unprepared. Perhaps politicians and bureaucrats can get some ideas from Hollywood. The Ebola virus has been on the US's mind for a long time, as can easily be demonstrated by reviewing the media in recent history.

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The 1995 film Outbreak follows an Ebola-like virus breakout starting in a small town in California. The primary settings in the film are government disease control centers USAMRIID and CDC.

The movie raised various "what-if" questions, as major media outlets discussed what the government would do in a real-life outbreak, and if the CDC had plans to prevent a real life outbreak. Just a few months after the film's release, a real-life outbreak of the Ebola virus ravaged Zaire.

Kara Bosworth, an actress from the movie, is shocked by the recent ebola outbreak.  Her advice? "Just stay away from sick people."  But if you watch the trailer for the movie it is very clear that, in their portrayal, an epidemic results in a massive police and martial law rollout.

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Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six, published in 1998, featured bad guys who were a bunch of hardcore environmentalists who also founded/operate a Big Pharma-type corp that develops an enhanced version of ebola that can be spread in the air...the initial release of the virus was supposed to occur "naturally", with a "vaccine" as a second phase mass delivery vector.  Slime (Time) Magazine put together in 2011 this nice list of epidemic movies, which you might enjoy now. (since all you'll get on mainstream media is ebola hyperbole)

Back in reality, everybody is dealing with the ebola coverage in their own way. Many are even awake to the possibility that there may be more here than meets the eye.

Many have laughed at Chris Brown for making this tweet, but his thought is not at all  unprecedented. The Tuskegee experiment was just one of many US government operations in which US citizens were given a virus for "studies".  This from Wikipedia on Tuskegee:

The Tuskegee syphilis experiment was an infamous clinical study conducted between 1932 and 1972 by the U.S. Public Health Service to study the natural progression of untreated syphilis in rural African American men who thought they were receiving free health care from the U.S. government.

So you can't put it past the government to infect its own citizens with viruses and diseases. In fact, maybe the government is even hinting at that themselves. In the following video, you will hear a government spokesperson refer multiple times, not to an ebola outbreak, but to the ebola "attack." 

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If it is an ebola "attack", the government and the so-called "Fourth Branch" of government - the media - have done a fantastic job over the decades getting Americans ready. 

HOW TO REACT TO EBOLA AND THE PANIC

As we've stated numerous times we still don't know how real this threat is.  What we do know is that this has all the trimmings of, at the very least, a hoax in many respects.

The reason we haven't given our perspective on how to prepare for this being a real disaster in the past is because all of the advice we have been giving here for years to survive the collapse of the US dollar and The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI) is all the same whether it is for TEOTMSAWKI or ebola.

We have advised, already, to get out of major population centers in the US.  We've also advised to just get completely out of the US as we see nothing good coming to that area for the coming years and believe it will be ground zero for the financial, monetary and economic collapse.  If ebola hits in a real way, the system will come crashing down shortly thereafter. We've advised to always have some cash on hand in case the banks/ATMs close, always have some precious metals on hand in case fiat currencies become worthless due to hyperinflation and we've advised to have at least a few months worth of food, water and supplies in your house in case the economic system comes to a screeching halt and grocery stores become emptied in a matter of hours and advised to grow more of your own food and become self-sufficient.

In fact, all of our five Killer B's are the same for TEOTMSAWKI as they would be for ebola.  

Bullion.  Have precious metals both on hand and internationaly diversified (see our special report, Getting Your Gold Out Of Dodge for more on that)

Bitcoin.  If the police state cracks down in the event of TEOTMSAWKI or an ebola outbreak (real or imagined) you may not even want to leave your house for a while making it tough to transact for things you want or need... in this case, bitcoin may come in handy even if just to transact on things globally, especially if an ebola epidemic causes the economy to crash which will assuredly cause banks to collapse.

Bullets.  We are expecting societal collapse in the West during TEOTMSAWKI and the same goes with ebola.  If there is a real epidemic then economic activity will come to a near halt.  Most people in the US are living paycheck to paycheck and are not at all prepared for anything like this.  So, it's good to have armaments on hand to protect yourself and your family from those who, unfortunately, were not aware of what is going on in the world.

Bud.  Medical marijuana is an excellent investment that we have been participating in (and focus on at TDV Golden Trader) as it becomes legalized around the world.  In the event of an ebola outbreak it might not hurt to have some around the house, though, to chill out after a long day of fighting zombies.  Not to mention marijuana, especially the cannabis oil, has untold health benefits.

Being.  This, as we always say, is the most important.  Being prepared physically, mentally and spiritually for TEOTMSAWKI.  In the case of ebola it is even more important.  If you are still eating processed foods, fast food, not exercising, not getting enough sun and don't have a positive mental attitude then your immune system is likely very weak.  It is very simple to have good health and your medical doctor will likely never tell you how but prescribe you more chemicals which treat your symptoms and make you even weaker.  We will be launching The Health Vigilante soon for all natural ways to keep your physical body in good working condition... something that is always of value.

And we advised our subscribers to prepare for a lot of volatility, fear and panic in the markets a few weeks ago and advised them to invest in plays on that such as buying leveraged options on the Volatility Index (VIX) which has more than doubled already in the last few weeks.  With or without an ebola outbreak we think the markets are going to go through an incredible amount of volatility over the coming year so we are already prepared.

CONCLUSION

We still see the biggest risk of the current ebola mania in being the government's response to it... more than the actual virus itself.

As we said above, if you are prepared for TEOTMSAWKI then you are already prepared for ebola and the potential police state that grows up around it.

Stick with us here at the TDV Blog or subscribe to The Dollar Vigilante newsletter to always stay one step ahead and find ways to free yourself and wealth from the extraordinary popular delusions and the madness of the crowds.

Has ebola been on your mind? Let us know why in the comments!

Jeff Berwick

TDV Interview: The Rundown Live

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 14:16

Jeff is interviewed by Mike Paczesny and Kristan T Harris for The Rundown Live, topics include: Ebola is manufactured, forced vaccination, isolation camps, the federal reserve is evil, government debt, no free market in the US, the internet is a free market, US dollar collapse, expatriation, the police state, Mexico more free than the US, Galts Gulch project, Anarchapulco, immigration, freedom, over-regulation, Anarcho-Capitalism, ISIS, propaganda, privatization, free market, The Market for Liberty.

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The Ebola Police And Warfare State

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 11:18

[The following post is by TDV Chief Editor, Jeff Berwick]

While we aren't surprised it is still with amazement how easily many people can be whipped into a frenzy of fear.  After all, two years ago, if you were to say to a person the two words, "ISIS" and "Ebola" they would have no reaction whatsoever.  In fact, they wouldn't even know what you were talking about in regards to ISIS as it didn't even exist at that time in its current form (it existed as the Israeli Secret Intelligence Service for decades before that but hardly anyone knew about it).  In regards to Ebola, it would have elicited a shrug from almost everyone.  

Two years ago, after all, Kony was the most important thing happening in the world.  Don't remember?  That's my point.  Kony 2012 was the meme of the day and the organisation which urged grassroots campaigners to help take down the African warlord Joseph Kony made nearly $20 million with its Kony 2012 campaign.  Its overall revenue for the year, made up from various sources including the Kony 2012 campaign, was $31.94 million. Its total expenses were $15.98 million. Of that, the company spent 81.48 per cent on "media, mobilisation, protection and recovery".

The director of Kony 2012 then ended up having a nervous breakdown and was video taped naked and masturbating on the streets of San Diego.  Kony 2012 faded and then in the last year they tried it again with the Boko Haram supposed kidnapping of hundreds of girls in Nigeria.

Remember this?

You probably don't remember.  It was six months ago, after all, already down the memory hole.  But that was the most important thing on Earth that week... until it was exposed by locals that no girls had been kidnapped in Nigeria.

That quickly faded after that and left the US empire wondering how they could possibly get troops into Africa since other attempts in the past had mostly failed.

THE WAR ON EBOLA

And so, just in the last few months a new panic has been manufactured.  Ebola!  We wrote about it here, "Ebola Is Coming For You - But Don't Worry The Government Has The Serum".

Since that time, Americans who were said to have contracted Ebola have been flown to the US (which makes perfect sense if you have a highly transmittable deadly virus to fly it to your country), then Barack O'Bomber sent in thousands of troops to West Africa to "lead the fight against ebola".  Most countries, if they were concerned about a dire medical situation would send in thousands of doctors... not the US though!  The War Of Terror has been waining dramatically in popularity so a new war had to be started as the Washington Post headlined, "The US Military's New Enemy: Ebola".

And, just today, O'Bomber cranked up the attacks even more, stating he was going to get more "aggressive".  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will have "SWAT teams" ready to send to hospitals where future cases are discovered, he said.

Also, the City of Dallas appears to be ready to call for a "state of emergency" because of ebola.  A declaration of emergency “activates the appropriate recovery and rehabilitation aspects of all applicable local or interjurisdictional emergency management plans and authorizes the furnishing of aid and assistance under the declaration.”

In addition, under a state of emergency, “the county judge or mayor of a municipality may control ingress to and egress from a disaster area under the jurisdiction and authority of the county judge or mayor and control the movement of persons and the occupancy of premises in that area.”

And on Monday a Fox "news" broadcaster was calling for "quarantine camps" to be set-up across the country.

What's the panic level like in Mexico over ebola?  Or Argentina?  Or Cambodia?  Or almost any country outside of the US and Europe?  Zero or very little.  Where are the calls from the public on plans to deal with ebola in other countries?  There are none... and probably rightfully so.

If you live anywhere in the US right now and are panicking about ebola you need to immediately turn off your television.  While we certainly aren't experts, at all, on viruses, we do take note of all the panics that have been promoted by the media over the last few decades that never came to fruition.  Swine flu, SARS, bird flu, HIV/AIDS (remember Oprah saying this in 1987? "Research studies now project that one in five — listen to me, hard to believe — one in five heterosexuals could be dead from AIDS at the end of the next three years. That’s by 1990. One in five.").  Global Cooling (Time and Newsweek predicted a coming ice age in the 1970s), acid rain (1980s), global warming (2000s), .  Al Qaeda (2000s), ISIS (2010s), Korasan (which lasted for a few weeks, last month)...

It's no wonder the largest cause of death in the US is "heart disease"... faced with this much fear porn its no wonder everyone hasn't died from a heart attack yet.

EVIDENCE OF A HOAX

If you ask many in the Middle East about ISIS they will tell you that they think it is a US backed and funded organization... and rightfully so since as much has been admitted openly by the US government.

And if you ask many people in Liberia what they think about ebola you will find the same.  The largest newspaper in Liberia stated that it believed ebola is a US government manufactured virus.  There is certainly evidence to that effect as the US Center for Disease Control patented a strain of ebola virus in 2010.

But, more than that, many on the street in Liberia are saying it is all a complete hoax that people are "dying in the streets by the thousands" of ebola.

Again, solid evidence of this being a hoax can be found all over as independent media sleuths worldwide examine the evidence.  This particular video is chock full of questionable items.

Click here or on thumbnail

And this video asks a very valid question.  If ebola is so real in Liberia why is there such a massive media campaign in Liberia telling people "ebola is real".  If ebola is as serious of a pandemic as they want us to think, people will know it, believe me.  If everyone in your town was dying from ebola you don't need a marketing campaign to tell you its real.

Click here or on thumbnail

IS EBOLA A REAL THREAT TO HUMAN LIFE ON EARTH?

It's still too early to be sure that ebola is not a real threat but as evidence continues to pour in it definitely appears to be more of a media panic than a serious concern at this point.  Much more concerning is the government's reaction to the real or imagined crisis in wanting to send troops to Africa, possible travel controls, sending in SWAT teams in the US to make sure it doesn't spread and talks of quarantine centers being set-up across the country.

More than anything this looks like yet another use of the Hegelian dialectic by The Powers That Be (TPTB).  That dialectic, most easily explained is Problem-Reaction-Solution.  In these terms, you create a false crisis which provokes public outcry for "something to be done" and then you offer them a solution in the form of mass-vaccinations, more government/police control and continued Empiricism throughout Africa and the Middle East.

In those terms, this threat is very real and being rolled out right now.

If ebola is a serious threat there is no amount of guns, police states, vaccines, travel controls or wars that will stop it.  For now, turn off your television and watch how quickly ebola just goes away all on its own.

Are you panicking and in fear of ebola and think we are crazy?  Comment here!

Jeff Berwick

Yes, We Can! Oppose The State...But Be Careful 'How'

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 04:22

[Editor’s Note: The following post is by TDV contributor, Wendy McElroy]

You can't fight City Hall. This is propaganda issued by City Hall – government and bureaucrats – to discourage those who would dissent, rebel or resist. “Nothing can be done to change the situation,” they declare, “so nothing should be attempted.”

A corollary lie is that one person cannot successfully stand up against the system. Bradley/Chelsea Manning, Julian Assange and Edward Snowden prove the opposite. Each contributed a surprise plot twist in the history of totalitarianism being written by officials. Each also point to the price individuals can pay for speaking truth to power. They provide valuable lessons on how to dissent, rebel or resist while sustaining the least possible damage to your life. [Note: the following are examples of extreme dissent, not more muted protest such as walking down a street while carrying a sign.]

Spotlighting Others Who Made a Difference

Other dissidents have grabbed recent headlines for counter-state actions in the past.

On the night of March 8, 1971, eight proto-Snowdens stole files from an FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania. They were anonymous members of the leftist anti-Vietnam war group, Citizens' Commission to Investigate the FBI. After careful surveillance, the activist-burglars timed the break-in to coincide with the hyped boxing match between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier; they figured security guards would be glued to their radios.

The resulting files documented the FBI's COINTELPRO program with its explicit mission to "expose, disrupt, misdirect, or otherwise neutralize" groups considered to be "subversive." Anti-Vietnam war and civil rights organizations were particular targets. The purloined information was disseminated to media sources, many of whom initially declined to publish. Enough information became public to create a furor, however, especially in concert with the Watergate scandal. The ensuing Church Committee, named after its chairman Senator Frank Church, investigated the FBI, CIA, and NSA for illegal gathering of information. COINTELPRO was disbanded. And Americans learned shocking secrets about government such as the FBI bugging of Martin Luther King and the CIA medical experiments on American citizens. 

Despite a massive FBI campaign, the eight activist-burglars were never identified. Most of them voluntarily revealed themselves 43 years later in a book entitled The Burglary: The Discovery of J. Edgar Hoover's Secret FBI (2014) by former Washington Post reporter, Betty Medsger; Medsger was one of the first journalists to receive the original documents. The last activist-burglar to speak out was Judi Feingold. A recent headline in The Nation declared, “Breaking 43 Years of Silence, the Last FBI Burglar Tells the Story of Her Years in the Underground.”

Why now? One of the eight died in 2013. According to The New York Times, William C. Davidon, the recruiter and leader of the team, had planned to reveal his involvement.  Perhaps the others realized time would make a decision for them if they did not decide for themselves. Besides which, the statute of limitations has passed, children have grown, retirements have been taken. Other radicals, such as members of the Weathermen, had emerged without consequence. The government is unlikely to prosecute or persecute senior citizens whom many consider to be heroes. For one thing, they would be articulate, unrepentant defendants who resembled everyone's grandparents while they raised issues the current NSA would rather not address.

How did the eight remain undetected? All but one member of the team (Feingold) stayed in the general area of Philadelphia because sudden moves could draw suspicion. Davidon continued to teach physics at Haverford College and went on to become a leader in the antiwar community, as he otherwise would have. Two others, John and Bonnie Raines, made the break-in their final act of rebellion, and focused instead on daily life. John is now retired from his many years as a professor of religion at Temple University. During that time, Bonnie ran a daycare center and went on to become a children's rights advocate. The couple blended in, and hid in plain sight. With one exception, the lives of the eight were remarkably unchanged by their act of dramatic defiance.

A key to their success: no one broke ranks or spoke out...until Medsger's book.  Although they were in close proximity for decades, members of the team rarely spoke to each other, and they never gathered together. When they spoke out, they believed Feingold was dead.

Feingold had fallen off the radar. She had pursued the equally successful but far more arduous strategy of going underground with many relocations and jobs that paid cash. Feingold called it “horizontal” rather than “vertical” living. By this she meant a life that did not rise through the expected stages of college, career, marriage, children... It moved across the board on the same economic and lifestyle level only in different venues.

Feingold stated her motive, “I chose a path of nonviolent direct action. I committed a federal crime with serious consequences. I knew my life would be fundamentally changed. I had made the right decision for me. My heart was breaking then over the deaths in Southeast Asia.” She claims to have no regrets even though she is the one activist-burglar whose life was thrown into chaos.

What Can Be Learned From Manning, Assange and Snowden?

None of the three more current whistle blowers chose to hide in plain sight or to go underground. Manning seemed content to stay at the same military position from which he had transmitted government documents to Wikileaks. But he made the one mistake the activist-burglars had eschewed: he confessed to a friend who did not participate in the leak. Adrian Lamo turned Manning over to the authorities. 

The lesson: shut up about it.

Julian Assange took the opposite tack from 'hiding in plain sight'. He flaunted the whistle blowing. He seemed to count on hubris, public prominence and popularity to shield him from persecution. The charge that drove him into sanctuary within the Ecuadorian embassy in London is telling. Sweden launched an unprecedented attempt to extradite him on suspicion of rape. From Sweden, he would almost certainly have been re-extradited to the dubious justice of the United States, a justice of which Manning is so painfully aware.

The rape accusation is clearly manufactured and a pretense. But Assange is also clearly a careless man – perhaps through arrogance – who allowed sexual and other situations to damage him unnecessarily. He played a high-profile game that was doomed to fail because his opponents were so much more powerful. He finally fled to the only option left open – neutral ground upon which American authority flexed no muscle. That should have been his starting point.

The lesson: do not go high profile while playing ball on your enemy's court...unless, of course, you wish an end-game confrontation that will almost certainly not turn out well. It doesn't matter if you are innocent. The other side will manufacture crimes, if necessary. .

Edward Snowden is more instructive. Snowden knew to get as far away as possible from America's sphere of authority and influence. He ended up in Russia, with his long-term girlfriend ultimately joining him in exile. He knew to partner with kindred-spirits in the media – first and foremost, Glenn Greenwald – upon whose support he could depend. Snowden also knew to downplay any arrogance or taunting of authority. He presented facts and arguments, and then walked away from the camera.

The lesson: if you eschew anonymity, then don't shake your fist within the jurisdiction of the targeted authority. Use media but be discerning because, more often than not, the popular ones will turn against you. Do not make the act of dissent all about you rather than about the exposed injustice. You will look foolish and become fodder.

Conclusion

You can fight City Hall. You can win. And win without suffering devastating (or any) consequences to your life. But there are rules. They include: secrecy, having trustworthy companions, being discreet rather than arrogant, hiding in plain sight or removing yourself to a 'safe' jurisdiction, and being willing to disappear. 

[Editor's Note: Whether you are a whistleblower or not one of the most prudent actions to take is to remove yourself from the US government in every way possible.  For Americans that can mean expatriating, living outside the US and especially getting a foreign passport.  If Edward Snowden had a second passport he would have many more options than he does today.  Check out TDV Passports to find out how to free yourself from oppressive regimes as thousands of other Americans have already done.]

Comments? Join us at TDV!

Wendy McElroy

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