Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

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Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

More About That 'Healthy' Consumer Spending

My anecdotes on strategic defaults

Here’s what I have uncovered via two anecdotes a friend sent me.

This first one comes via Bill Fleckenstein from a retired hedge fund manager. Catch Fleck via his daily newsletter (subscription) or his MSN column, which is free. Bill says the reader told him the following five anecdotes:

My 25 year old niece had $10,000 of outstanding credit card debt. Recently, she told the bank she couldn’t pay. She is not unemployed so the ‘hardship’ is all relative. Nevertheless, the bank offered her a concession which she refused. They offered another concession, she refused again. Finally, they told her if she paid $150/month for 2 years (total of only $3600 with no interest), they would call it paid in full! She accepted in a heartbeat. It is less than a month later, and she celebrated her good fortune by going on a cruise to Hawaii.

A friend owns a small manufacturing co. He tells me of one of his female employees who was saddled with a $450,000 home she purchased almost five years ago with no down pmt. One year after her purchase she pulled $75,000 home equity and purchased ‘fun stuff’ including a boat. She recently walked away from the house (now saddled with $525K mortgage), purchased a new house for $200,000 (in her sister’s name) and kept all the goodies purchased from the home equity withdrawal. With the much lower mortgage payment she just bought a new car.

Almost everyone in my "survey" is aware of, or knows someone living rent free in their home for an extended period of time, having stopped paying their mortgage. Many of these free boarders are spending lavishly on non-essentials. My hard-working part-time assistant knows two different 35+ yr olds who have enjoyed over 9 months (one is up to month eleven) of rent-free living in very nice homes they purchased in 2004/2005! Both are employed and both enjoy a non-frugal lifestyle. My assistant wonders if he should do the same or have me pay him more so that he too can enjoy the ‘good life’.

My sister is a nurse with 25+ years on the job. She told me of a young couple that she is good friends with that both work at her hospital making a decent joint income. They didn’t like the fact that they grossly overpaid for their 3000 sq ft home in 2006. They stopped making hefty monthly payments six months ago and haven’t yet been contacted by the bank. They have decided to wait until contacted and then walk away. In the meantime, they just returned from NYC from a week vacation in the Big Apple.

My brother-in-law wanted to know if he should stop making payments on everything. He lives in Virginia and his carpentry skills are not as marketable as they were in the height of the boom. He and his wife’s best friend have lived close-by for many years. For the past 13 months since they strategically decided to stop paying their mortgage, they had yet to be contacted by their bank. Not even one letter! My brother-in-law doesn’t understand how they get to pocket the mortgage and spend carefree, including a 10-day Caribbean vacation.

I can list numerous other, verified examples. And these are just from my tiny, tiny universe. I can’t help but assume if I know of this many instances, there must be millions of similar stories across the country. And I am sure many of your readers have first or second hand knowledge of similar situations. 

Bill, for me, the weight of evidence is pretty powerful. I am convinced that it is a specific government policy to increase consumer spending by allowing massive debt repudiation. And, I think they are pulling it off, at least for now. 

Another hedgie in San Francisco, responded with this after seeing these anecdotes:

From the West Coast I have at least that many stories. They come in clusters. One brave party takes the first step and "wins" then relatives or co-workers follow the successful example. The persons are still employed – default on debt – they rarely get contacted by lenders and then negotiate hard (the debtors that is). After some settlement they keep spending lavishly. In every case a vacation is part of the program. Every case!

In one example 5 employees at a local business that caters to wealthy clients have defaulted. The first guy and his ex were a classic accident waiting to happen – big lifestyle and all on borrowed $$. He’s still in his place 19 months later. Then a guy who got his hours cut back – same story. The last two are STILL making over $100k. No one is making his mortgage payment. No one is in foreclosure yet – only the first guy has even been contacted and he’s the most underwater. The last two (one guy I know well) are still religious about the credit card debt, however.

 I have a place of the beach in Mexico. One of the newer buyers on our beach got the money from a refi in Oregon in 2006 (about $300k). He stopped paying last year on his Oregon place – still has the house, no proceedings – just some letters. He even rents it out during the winter to another couple who walked away and mailed in the keys on their home last year (foolish them!!).

Small business here are getting killed, however. There is very little new money and the terms to renew a line, or refi a CRE mortgage, are crazy. Almost all small business lines are also tied to assets – real estate in most cases – and it’s very hard to renew with a smaller bank.

I know this sounds like lunacy but these are stories I know personally.

 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

IMHO, the real problem in America is the failure of the people at large to recognize the impact of the actions of their peers.

If these people were bragging about "Hey man, I just went down and comitted arson by setting the public library on fire, and then tomorrow I plan to steal one of those really big highway signs from the interstate and sell it for scrap metal value", the people around them would turn them in to the authorities. People would "get it" and realize that reckless, selfish actions like those ultimately end up costing the taxpayers and they everyone is the victim of such behavior.

But when people behave as described here, their peers salute them. Yeah, Man! Show them bankster assholes and don't pay your mortgage, dude! Go to Hawaii instead!

The signs of selfish behavior having a destructive impact on society have been clear for nearly a decade now. When people started flipping houses they could never afford in the first place left and right, most people knew it was an economically unsustainable activity. But nobody ever seems to connect the dots and say "Hey wait a minute! When the effects of this reckless behavior eventually have to be absorbed, the rest of us are going to get stuck with the bill."

It literally brings a tear to my eye to see what's happening to America.

Erik

 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Erik T. wrote:

It literally brings a tear to my eye to see what's happening to America.

Don't confuse the blogosphere with reality. I trust the blogosphere's perspective as much as I trust the MSM's agenda, which is not much. 

I just offer this because I know your outside the country.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Thanks Jeff, but I got a sufficient dose of reality while I was still in the country. That's why I left.

Erik

 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Sorry, but I find this post insulting! There are plenty of people who wish to keep their house, even thou it is underwater. I'm one and have tried to do everything possible and the banks don't want to work with you. I have seen and heard people from all walks of life who had to leave their homes and watch some slick operator come in and buy it for next to nothing and then sell it for a profit. Then the original home owner loses out bigtime. Also those who think they can just walk away may find the banks coming after them years later. The second mortgage holder can sue and collect!

 For every story you find someone trying to con the banks, I'm sure there are thousands who desperately try and save their homes. A lot of us find it hard to learn the whole system is a ponzi scheme and still we try and do the right thing? Jon

http://www.housingwatch.com/2010/01/08/will-f2f-save-you-from-foreclosue/

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Sorry, but I find this post insulting! There are plenty of people who wish to keep their house, even thou it is underwater. I'm one and have tried to do everything possible and the banks don't want to work with you. I have seen and heard people from all walks of life who had to leave their homes and watch some slick operator come in and buy it for next to nothing and then sell it for a profit. Then the original home owner loses out bigtime. Also those who think they can just walk away may find the banks coming after them years later. The second mortgage holder can sue and collect!

 For every story you find someone trying to con the banks, I'm sure there are thousands who desperately try and save their homes. A lot of us find it hard to learn the whole system is a ponzi scheme and still we try and do the right thing? Jon

http://www.housingwatch.com/2010/01/08/w...

 

I second that comment. I personally know of people who have experienced a 40% reduction in income over the last two years and are now working extra jobs to keep up with the bills. 

Con the banks? No, we're just trying to survive. 

 

Erik T.,

Isn't it nice to sit in your ivory tower in some foreign country and scoff at the little people you left behind in America. Pompous. Elitist.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Neither I nor the author quoted in the base post made any comments intended to insult the responsible Americans who are trying their best to survive the crisis and cope with the unfair reality that has been bestowed upon them by a corrupt system. That said, I offer no apologies; my comments didn't address the people doing their best to act responsibly, and frankly I find the allegations that I did rather silly.

For the record, what I'm "scoffing at" is the way that America and everything it once stood for is going down the toilet because the masses are allowing a corrupt government to sell out the nation's wealth to corrupt bankers. They are the real "elitists", not me.

xraymike, you can call me whatever names you like. I'll continue to do my part - despite not even living in the country any more - to help America by doing what I can to raise public awareness that tolerance for the sort of behavior described in the base post hurts everyone. If you're really unable to parse the difference between my desire to wake Americans up to the problems that irresponsible members of society have created for everyone else and an "elitist" agenda, that's your problem, dude. And for the record, no, I don't find it nice at all to have been driven out of the country I love and was born in because absurd government policies and a corrupt financial system allowed a bunch of reckless morons to spend and live well beyond their means for years at the ultimate expense of everyone else.

Erik

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
xraymike79 wrote:

 

 

Erik T.,

Isn't it nice to sit in your ivory tower in some foreign country and scoff at the little people you left behind in America. Pompous. Elitist.

 

Wow, What an amazingly close minded comment. Out of pure curiosity, do you feel that everyone that is interested in living out of country due to actions within government (let alone any other reason) are "pompous elitist's"

 

I love how people look for tone of voice in forum comments.....its funny

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

I do not know Erik, he may or may not be elitist ; however, I know that his generous comments on the futures market (for example) have helped me understand a little more.  A comment of this sort would have an effect on me. I just hope you keep on contributing with the same intensity. Thank you Erik. 

Luc

 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Perhaps I chose the wrong title. I did it to show that many of us are doing things the hard way, the right way - while others are getting a free ride. Maybe a better title would have been "Some American's Rewarded For Bad Decisions."

The thrust of the thread, and the article was a compliment to CM's 'Irreconcilable Differences' to show where some, not all, consumers are getting their money from.

More importantly it underscores the banks. IMO I think 8 million homes 90 days delinquent is likely not an accurate figure if many of these folks haven't even gotten a letter or call from the institution.

Say what we want about blogs, but after blogging a few years my take is that: Stories like this start appearing, then the media lets a few slip in and then after the house of cards collapses we find out this was the a lot more widespread.

Sorry again for a bad title, it really torques me to do things the honest way and have to support the banks for stupid decions. 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

xraymike79, I disagree with your analysis of Erik's personality 100%.

Erik,

While the spending habits of Americans has been/is shameful, it's not really their fault. As a nation, we (and a good portion of Europe) are now well into our third generation of a concerted audio visual media and mass mailing propaganda campaign to teach us that "for everything else, there's MasterCard".

My parents were kids during the late 20s early 30s and had the "save" mentality that came out of that engineered depression, but beginning with the end of WW II they were taught and lured into the belief that consumerism is the proper way to live. All those GI loans and the associated housing boom really kick-started it.

We've been duped and I am such a product of that pop culture of consumerism that I still parrot TV like Pacino's Rainman even though I killed my TV in '99. I bought in completely. I added to the problem by carrying consumer debt and I flipped houses using Option A loans. In my defense, I bought distressed houses and reconditioned them beautifully and sold them to first/second time homebuyers.

Even you are a product of that same mentality. Although your personal finances don't fit the picture, you take pleasure in the newness of the city in which you now live. That city was built solely on that consumerist mentality you so disdain.

Wipe that tear, keep teaching us what you know that we may teach others. Perhaps when we rebuild this thing we'll keep the good and ditch the bad. Your efforts here may very well benefit millions well beyond your time in on this earth. Thanks for that.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Thanks for the support, guys, but I really wasn't all that offended. To be honest, I wasn't even clear whether Jon was referring to the original base post or my reply when he said "I'm sorry but I find this post insulting!" - I still have no idea what offended him (Davos' initial post or my reply).

But in any case, this site is about Chris Martenson's values of community and sharing. I certainly meant no offense to anyone, and I hope we can all move forward with "positive energy" from here.

Best,

Erik

 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

I'd like to stick to the topic but since it was bought up: The only elitest are the SOB's that blew up the economy with WMD (read: derivatives) and then had you and I pay for them and while they enjoy bonuses we enjoy and we get an economy and a business climate that is suffering.

It isn't right to confuse a successful self-made millionaire for wanting a better life for himself, he isn't an elitest, the elitest are the Paulson's and the people who run GS professing to be doing God's work, which last I heard wasn't shafting 308 million Americans.

Also, the article s*cks in the sense that it is disturbing, but point the anger where it is justly deserved. I think 99% of our problem is our education system (no offense to teachers, it is the architects of education I'm wagging a finger at) and our media, a lot of people have gotten sucked into it and as a result get dumbed down and we all pay for this. They aren't stupid they've been dumbed down. And, if I'm not misstaken, ET has contributed a lot to this site, which helps turn that tide.

Take care

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Erik,

Yeah, Man! Show them bankster assholes and don't pay your mortgage, dude

I'm not sure I understand.  Why should the people have to pay the banks when the banks never loaned them anything in the first place?  If I never loan you anything why should you be obligated to pay me?

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Davos wrote:

I'd like to stick to the topic but since it was bought up: The only elitest are the SOB's that blew up the economy with WMD (read: derivatives) and then had you and I pay for them and while they enjoy bonuses we enjoy and we get an economy and a business climate that is suffering.

Yes, back on topic. I think the real shame is how much importance is placed on owning things that you don't really need. It seems that is all people really talk about. A new car a new house the latest gizmo, making more money, etc. All classes are quilty of it. Our entire culture is based on decadence, greed and other mentally juvenile constructs.

IMO what is happening now is just part of the sad melt down of these pathetic priorities.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Johnny Oxygen wrote:

Davos wrote:

I'd like to stick to the topic but since it was bought up: The only elitest are the SOB's that blew up the economy with WMD (read: derivatives) and then had you and I pay for them and while they enjoy bonuses we enjoy and we get an economy and a business climate that is suffering.

Yes, back on topic. I think the real shame is how much importance is placed on owning things that you don't really need. It seems that is all people really talk about. A new car a new house the latest gizmo, making more money, etc. All classes are quilty of it. Our entire culture is based on decadence, greed and other mentally juvenile constructs.

IMO what is happening now is just part of the sad melt down of these pathetic priorities.

Yup, and it is really hard to unplug. We downsized from 4,000 sq ft to 1,800 sq feet, subdivision to mountains, switched careers, drive 10 year old paid for vehicles, one of which I put a new engine in myself - and yet just to exist you need quite a bit since the dollar is not worth less but nearly and on it's way to being worthless.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

bit since the dollar is not worth less but nearly and on it's way to being worthless.

Davos,  I'm not sure I understand.

How can something become worthless when there is an ever increasing demand for it?  I thought something really only became worthless is when nobody wanted it at all.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Erik T.:

IMHO, the real problem in America is the failure of the people at large to recognize the impact of the actions of their peers.

 

What if the average person really does have some idea of how corrupt the entire system is? What if they know that our political system has been up for auction to the highest bidder for quite some time, that bankers and MNC's are the ones really running the entire system, and that the needs of the well-connected and financed are served first, above all else in this land.

In my experience, this is what a number of people are cognizant of and feel powerless to do anything about. If the entire system is this corrupt, then what will it take to change it. What it will take is a complete collapse of what is entirely rotten from within. And people recognize that this won't happen anytime soon because it will be defended to the death by those it serves; hence, the cognitive dissonance CM talked about in his latest article between "the news" and reality on "main street."

So I don't really think we can blame the American people at large for a totally corrupt system they are held captive by. Blaming them when they are bombarded by daily doses of propaganda on TV and print would seem to me to be unfair.

What is the truth? You won't find it in the mainstream media or the collective culture of this society.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Thomas Hedin wrote:

but since the dollar is not worth less but nearly and on it's way to being worthless.

Davos,  I'm not sure I understand.

How can something become worthless when there is an ever increasing demand for it?  I thought something really only became worthless is when nobody wanted it at all.

Not at all surprised. It is all about supply. Increase the supply of anything and it's worth goes down the toilet.

Compare the purchase power of gold to a wide variety of products (fuel, food, homes, automobiles and so on) in 2002 and do the same in 2008. 

Gold retained it's purchasing power, the dollar is nearly worthless.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Davos wrote:

Yup, and it is really hard to unplug. We downsized from 4,000 sq ft to 1,800 sq feet, subdivision to mountains, switched careers, drive 10 year old paid for vehicles, one of which I put a new engine in myself - and yet just to exist you need quite a bit since the dollar is not worth less but nearly and on it's way to being worthless.

Hmm. I live in 1,400sf and don't own a car at all. I take the bus. You rich assholes are all the same!

Erik Tongue outTongue outTongue out

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Erik T. wrote:
Davos wrote:

Yup, and it is really hard to unplug. We downsized from 4,000 sq ft to 1,800 sq feet, subdivision to mountains, switched careers, drive 10 year old paid for vehicles, one of which I put a new engine in myself - and yet just to exist you need quite a bit since the dollar is not worth less but nearly and on it's way to being worthless.

Hmm. I live in 1,400sf and don't own a car at all. I take the bus. You rich assholes are all the same!

Erik Tongue outTongue outTongue out

 

LMAO!   Glad some levity has risen in this thread!

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Cool Maybe the elitist comment I shouldn't have stuck up for ---- 1,400 sq feet huh? Hmm keeping the summer home in Maine off balance sheet like the elite huh?

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

 

Erik T.:

IMHO, the real problem in America is the failure of the people at large to recognize the impact of the actions of their peers

What if the average person really does have some idea of how corrupt the entire system is? What if they know that our political system has been up for auction to the highest bidder for quite some time, that bankers and MNC's are the ones really running the entire system, and that the needs of the well-connected and financed are served first, above all else in this land.

In my experience, this is what a number of people are cognizant of and feel powerless to do anything about. If the entire system is this corrupt, then what will it take to change it? What it will take is a complete collapse of what is entirely rotten from within. And people recognize that this won't happen anytime soon because it will be defended to the death by those it serves; hence, the cognitive dissonance CM talked about in his latest article between "the news" and reality on "main street."

So I don't really think we can blame the American people at large for a totally corrupt system they are held captive by. Blaming them when they are bombarded by daily doses of propaganda on TV and print would seem to me to be unfair.

What is the truth? You won't find it in the mainstream media or the collective culture of this society.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Wow,  it isn't often on this forum that people talk to each other in these tones or seem to not be hearing each other.

For me, and me only,  when I read these stories (OP)  and hear them from people I know - yes I am hearing them too - it infuriates me.  Like Davos said there are bunches of us who are working our tails off trying to repay our debts and do the right thing,  sitting home on our 20y ear old living room furniture watching the deadbeat across the street buy more new furniture for the house he is defaulting on!   

Many of us know how corrupt the system is.  The questions is - to what degree do we decide that if we can't beat them we should go ahead and join them and be corrupt too?  That is the choice many people are making.  They feel that the system,  gov't, banks etc is corrupt so why should they pay their debts?  Why shouldn't they be corrupt too?  They don't think through the fact that those bills come due to the rest of us.  Each time some one cheats the system some one else DOES get hurt.

Currently the system is SO corrupt that those of us who play by the rules are continuing to get hurt.  So how do we protect ourselves without choosing to become corrupt?

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

I think there is a faulty premise at the heart of this thread. The premise is that there are rules. There are no rules. Therefore there is no doing the right thing or the wrong thing there is only doing what you perceive is in your best interest. 

The world operates under the law of the jungle. The law of the jungle is survival of the fittest. Whatever teary eyed subjective view anyone may have had about what America used to be is irrelevant. The objective reality is everyone is doing what is in their own interest. Altruists end up like the Dalai Lama a ruler without a country powerless to effect any kind of meaningful change.

There is no place in this world one can go where one is not under the control of one Mafia or the other.  The world is under the control (economically, energetically and environmentally) of power mad sociopaths intent on maintaining their power at any cost. 

If some of the "little" people think it is in their best interests to walk away from a mortgage they will do it ..period . They owe nothing to me or anyone else in this country by way of explanation. Nation states are artificial constructs as are corporations and are no more than vehicles of control. All humans on this planet are nothing more than resources to be mined by those in control. If your resources have a lien attached to them that goes on for 30 or more years then how free can you truly be? Maybe some people are just realizing that one way to achieve some kind of freedom is to say "screw ' the system and walk away. Maybe it is up to the rest of us to see that we are supporting a system which conspires to deprive us of our basic human liberties. Now what color pill am I supposed to take?

V

 

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
V wrote:

I think there is a faulty premise at the heart of this thread. The premise is that there are rules. There are no rules. Therefore there is no doing the right thing or the wrong thing there is only doing what you perceive is in your best interest. 

The world operates under the law of the jungle. The law of the jungle is survival of the fittest. Whatever teary eyed subjective view anyone may have had about what America used to be is irrelevant. The objective reality is everyone is doing what is in their own interest. Altruists end up like the Dalai Lama a ruler without a country powerless to effect any kind of meaningful change.

There is no place in this world one can go where one is not under the control of one Mafia or the other.  The world is under the control (economically, energetically and environmentally) of power mad sociopaths intent on maintaining their power at any cost. 

If some of the "little" people think it is in their best interests to walk away from a mortgage they will do it ..period . They owe nothing to me or anyone else in this country by way of explanation. Nation states are artificial constructs as are corporations and are no more than vehicles of control. All humans on this planet are nothing more than resources to be mined by those in control. If your resources have a lien attached to them that goes on for 30 or more years then how free can you truly be? Maybe some people are just realizing that one way to achieve some kind of freedom is to say "screw ' the system and walk away. Maybe it is up to the rest of us to see that we are supporting a system which conspires to deprive us of our basic human liberties. Now what color pill am I supposed to take?

V

 

 

This is Nash' non-cooperative game theory in action.  He believed the world operated this way at a time when it still did not.  But, others Friedman et al were happy to spread his belief system into our economic system until the ethos caught ahold.  If we don't rethink it we will end up with Fascism or worse because the people will want rule and will go to illogical extremes to get it.

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Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

Land you have already ended up with Fascism. I am not promoting anything I am simply observing. Your opinion is the world did not operate this way. Caesar, Genghis Khan, Attila, Hitler, Machiavelli, Jamie Dimon, Loyd Blankfein, Ben Bernanke, the Rothschilds, the House of Saud, the house of Bush, Dick Cheney and countless others would quietly disagree with you while using that belief to keep you enslaved in THEIR system.

The sheeple want rule, they want to be led. That is why they just got done sending in tax returns to an unconstitutional private entity that uses extortion to get its money.

Look at what is on the wall behind the speaker in the House of Reps. I did not put it there I just see it for what it is. Fascina

V

 ps I highly recommend the book " Winning Through Intimidation" for an enlightening view of the world. No one does anything except as it is perceived to be in their best interests. 

Erik T.'s picture
Erik T.
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 5 2008
Posts: 1234
Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

xraymike,

The people have the ability to vote the corrupt elites out of office. All they have to do is stop allowing themselves to be influenced by who spends the most money on campaign advertising. That means work. That means ignoring what the MSM and the ads say, and recognizing that it's your civic duty to take the time and make the effort to educate yourself and understand both the issues and the positions of the candidates, viewing each with a critical eye.

The problem in America is that nobody wants to do that work. They just absorb TV ads as intermission between segments on American Idol (or whatever) and don't take the personal responsibility of learning about issues and candidates (indepentent of what the MSM or the TV ads tell them) seriously.

If people were willing to do that hard work, the system would reform. But they're too lazy, or at least that's how I see it.

Erik

 

Johnny Oxygen's picture
Johnny Oxygen
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2009
Posts: 1443
Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Erik T. wrote:

xraymike,

The people have the ability to vote the corrupt elites out of office. All they have to do is stop allowing themselves to be influenced by who spends the most money on campaign advertising. That means work. That means ignoring what the MSM and the ads say, and recognizing that it's your civic duty to take the time and make the effort to educate yourself and understand both the issues and the positions of the candidates, viewing each with a critical eye.

The problem in America is that nobody wants to do that work. They just absorb TV ads as intermission between segments on American Idol (or whatever) and don't take the personal responsibility of learning about issues and candidates (indepentent of what the MSM or the TV ads tell them) seriously.

If people were willing to do that hard work, the system would reform. But they're too lazy, or at least that's how I see it.

Erik

 

 

Erik

I love you bro but I have to disagree.

Line up all the candidates for the last 24 years and IMO none of them are the leaders we really need. In fact they already have a long history of being deeply entrenched in the ins-and-outs of politics. They are just as hungry for power as anyone else and all the research and votes won't change that. The system is unwinding and the sooner it falls apart the better. Then maybe some significant leaders will come to the front or maybe just despots, who knows.

I have no faith in our brand of democracy/rebublic any longer.

Erik T.'s picture
Erik T.
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 5 2008
Posts: 1234
Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way

JO,

1) If I "loved you too", I wouldn't admit it publicly! :-)

2) I see your point but disagree. The reason you have no worthwhile candidates is that nobody is paying attention, and everyone responds to media advertising.

You do have outliers. Ron Paul. Peter Schiff. But they are few and far between (and are seldom taken seriously) because the masses hear them being marginalized by the MSM and accept that as gospel. If all Americans took this seriously and had a healthy degree of skepticism toward everything coming from the MSM, there would be a viable market for these guys and there would be more of them.

So you're right that the options suck, but they only suck because the people who would be better options are smart enought to see that they have no chance and would be wasting their time trying.

Erik

p.s. JO, I really enjoy your posts, but let's keep Love out of this, ok? :-)

 

SagerXX's picture
SagerXX
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 11 2009
Posts: 2236
Re: Stupid Me, I Guess I Do Things The Hard Way
Thomas Hedin wrote:

bit since the dollar is not worth less but nearly and on it's way to being worthless.

Davos,  I'm not sure I understand.

How can something become worthless when there is an ever increasing demand for it?  I thought something really only became worthless is when nobody wanted it at all.

When ever-increasing supply exceeds ever-increasing demand...

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