"A State which dwarfs its men, in order that they may be more docile instruments in its hands -- even for beneficial purposes -- will find that with small men no great thing can really be accomplished." ~ John Stuart Mill
Pirate Poop #6
Exclusive to STR
How Much Does a Wheelbarrow Cost?
Paraphrased questions from a reader, with my answers. Your mileage may vary.
Q: Have you checked into Series I Savings Bonds?
A: I took 60 seconds researching them, no thanks. Major problems: just paper, tracked by the IRS , early redemption penalties, backed by nothing, arbitrary limits, and the interest rate is about 3% below the real rate of inflation. When the dollar crashes, so will these. Buy your wheelbarrow now, while you can still afford it.
Q: I am looking for a mutual fund for my young son's Roth IRA, any suggestions?
A: Why not buy gold bullion coins for him instead? No limits, no paperwork, no tracking, no IRS , no BS, and gold was up 18% last year. Gold is currently in a secular bull market, bullion is not paper, and gold coins are backed by thousands of years of history as real money. Gold coins are accepted worldwide, plus they are easy to buy, store, and hide. He will love the idea and when the dollar crashes, he may double or triple his wealth, overnight, without doing anything. Note that CNI recently doubled their minimum order for free shipping to $2,000, but that should not stop you.
Q: I think I Bonds are great investments, why shouldn't I buy more?
A. Your sentiment is based on faith, not history. I will put my money on history, especially in our current situation. Paper is paper and gold is gold, but only one of them is real money and only one of them has no limits, rules, or paperwork. You were banging on the diversification drum, but now you are banging on the paper drum. Why not try some non-paper for a change? $10,000 worth of one oz. gold Eagles is less than 18 coins. Trade some of your ink on paper for real money so that when the dollar crashes, at least you won't be wiped out overnight. You will still be able to afford to buy your wheelbarrow then, saving you many trips to the store with more paper.
Q: I get good interest from my I Bonds, why can't I just sell them if interest rates plummet?
A: Interest rates are not about to plummet, they may soon skyrocket. Get out of paper!
Q: If my young son opens a Roth IRA now, won't he be a millionaire much sooner?
A: Millionaires in paper will need more wheelbarrows! Inflation will eat them alive, too.
Q: How much does a wheelbarrow cost?
A: Today, a wheelbarrow costs a fraction of what it may soon cost (in dollars), but that is not my point. The only people who will need a wheelbarrow are those who are in paper when the dollar crashes.
Homedepot.com currently sells this Jackson 6 cu. ft. contractor wheelbarrow (model M6T22UT11) for $79.95.
Q: You have a valid point about diversification, but why shouldn't we open a Roth IRA in a mutual fund for our young son?
A: Establish a good base of low risk personal wealth before moving on to more risky vehicles, like mutual funds. Most people do this backwards. Many people do not understand funds, yet they feel compelled to buy them, often without doing their homework first. They do not understand the risks involved, the tax consequences, or that fees and inflation can eat them alive over time, even without a market crash.
The real problem is that business cycles are induced, perpetuated, and exacerbated by central banks and fiat currency; boom and bust cycles wipe out many fortunes in the process. Some people jump out of windows or shoot their broker during market crashes, but gold owners don't feel so inclined.
Why not take the Pirate's approach and start with gold? It is easy to buy, hold, sell, and understand. Gold is also an inflation hedge, with built-in catastrophe insurance. How can you beat it? You can walk into any coin store with a fist full of ink on paper and walk out with real money, legally. This is a no-brainer of the first order.
Bullion should be the starting point; anything else is much riskier. Why only think about a safe nest egg after years of building a large house of cards made out of paper, while anxiously awaiting the next crash and whistling past the graveyard?
Starting from scratch (again!) 10-15 years down the road can be very painful, but it is unnecessary and avoidable. First things should come first.
Life's lessons are often learned the hard way, but they don't have to be.
JCN: Believe What You Must
There is a saying that 'the people believe what they must believe'; it is the mark of being a good sheeple. The problem with Pirates is that they don't believe what they must.
When Jack Nicholson rails at Tom Cruise that famous line, 'Truth? You can't handle the truth!' he is, of course, correct, but since those who hired him cannot handle the truth, he is punished accordingly.
Punishment can often be the fate of a Pirate who thinks that others see, or want to see, the truth that to anyone with half-a-mind should be obvious. The problem is that seeing or admitting the truth causes a great deal of discomfort in one's mind, so the majority of people choose not to see it, or hear it, or deal with it. Blind obedience, blind faith, or blind hope in the impossible is so much easier to accept.
So, as a good Pirate, never assume that other people see what you see, or understand what you understand, and never, ever throw it in their faces because they may not appreciate it.
Here are some truths that may be unpleasant for non-Pirates to handle:
The United States is an Empire, so it must act like one, it cannot help itself.
The U.S. dollar is worthless paper; it is of value only as long as Asians need it to be.
The U.S. is bankrupt and living on handouts from people who we view as third-world peasants; they buy our T-Bills and sell us cheap products that we buy with money they loan to us.
Others view your necessary public works project as pork. The rebuilding of New Orleans is the definition of insanity; it is below sea level and nature will not allow it to exist on a permanent basis.
The climate is changing; it is not just your imagination and nothing can be done about it.
All politicians will lie to you to get you to vote for them . . . yes, all of them!
Equity in your home is not real money, unless you sell your home and buy a cheaper one; this is not typical sheeple behavior.
Democracy is a nice word for mob rule. The U.S. was never intended to be a democracy; it was intended to be a constitutional republic. Democracy allows 51% of voters to tyrannize the other 49% legally, plus all of the non-voters.
There really are people out there who hate you; they will kill you if given the opportunity.
Nothing, including the government of the United States , will last forever.