Finally we can talk openly about ‘the thing’ you’ve all felt and deduced was going on behind the scenes.
Adam and I started two main business endeavors (1) Peak Prosperity and (2) Greylock (for those unaware, Greylock was the legal vehicle that allowed us to endorse the awesome team over at New Harbor Financial).
This marks the ending of an amazingly productive, enormously successful partnership between Adam Taggart and myself and the dawn of two revamped and revitalized businesses.
What this means is that Adam will follow his passion for helping people build and manage their wealth by running Greylock (see Adam’s announcement below) and I’ll be taking over the reins of Peak Prosperity as the sole owner.
To recount what we’ve managed to accomplish over the past decade+ has been really astonishing. Literally two guys who poured their hearts, souls and life energy into creating and sustaining this website so that this amazing community could form and, maybe, make the world a better place.
I’d put our output and accomplishments up against any other team out there. Of course, we had plenty of help along the way with Jason Wiskerchen rock-steady in the background assuring the content got posted and the seminars ran smoothly. We’ve had moderators and volunteers and all of the Daily Digest contributions over the years.
My Mission Comes First
I am a natural-born information scout. I love ferreting out what’s really happening and then using my gifts as a communicator and dot-connector to help people understand complicated issues in real-time.
I managed to sleuth out the truth behind the “gone walk about” nuclear cores of the Fukushima reactors within 72 hours. It took the world 2 years to finally catch up to that insight and publicly admit what some good old-fashioned common sense and critical thinking had been able to reveal in a matter of days. This allowed my readers to plan and react far faster than the general public.
Covid during 2020 was another fast-breaking situation that required every bit of my attention (and then some). I proudly stand behind not only the speed of what I learned and shared widely, but its accuracy. People were able to take protective measures and I have hundreds of comments and emails attesting to the fact that this reporting saved lives, and provided emotional comfort to, well, millions probably. Frankly, it might be years before the rest of our culture catches up with the knowledge most here possess.
Along the way I’ve matured and grown. I now see the world differently. Recent events have taught me just how important my role in the world really is, and I feel that responsibility more fully than before.
By way of example, I created the Crash Course in 2008 because it didn’t exist. I’m proud of all that the Crash Course has accomplished – without it Peak Prosperity would never have come into being – and while it represents some of the best work of my life (so far), if it didn’t already exist I would not invest the time to create the Crash Course today.
Why not? Because the world has changed and I don’t think it would be even slightly receptive to that material now. The Crash Course had a huge impact in 2008. My assessment is that today it would fall flat and gain little traction. The programming against critical thinking and independent thought is too pervasive and successful. In brief, from my perspective, the world has gone a bit mad. It’s lost its grip on reality.
It’s in these moments of cultural madness that a site like Peak Prosperity and its community really shine. It has become, for many, a beacon of hope where logic, actual science, reason, compassion and a heart-centered life still matter.
It’s been my distinct honor to ‘hold center’ for this community, which I will continue to do to the very best of my abilities. More than that, I am excited to work with everyone here to craft Peak Prosperity into an even better, stronger, more valuable place to gather, share, be curious, learn and grow.
What Just Happened
In order to decide if your will continue to place your trust in this site going forward, you deserve the truth and sufficient context, so here it is.
Adam and I were approached in 2019 by potential partners (a.k.a. ‘the investors’) at a time when we were both working the same long hours but watching our business slowly dwindle. In the prior few years we watched many of our peers and on-line colleagues burn out and drop away as the endless financial repression (i.e. interest rates down, gold down, stocks up, reality nowhere to be found) continued to grind on and on and on.
The good news was at least we were still afloat! But we felt in need of a path that would allow us to navigate and survive a world that was increasingly more interested in telling itself fairy tales than confronting its many predicaments.
So we listened and wrestled with the deal before us. The intentions were good. They had powerful back-office and marketing functions and a large database of potential new minds to engage, and we had content.
I wanted to reach more people and Adam needed help managing the day-to-day aspects of our business. It seemed that a strategic partnership could offer both of us what we wanted.
All parties signed a term sheet on December 26th, 2019. There was much rejoicing.
/Cue ominous music/
On January 23rd, 2020 my first coronavirus alert went out. None of us really knew at that time just how much the world had fully altered the terms of our deal. I immediately began producing all-consuming coronavirus content on a daily basis.
The final offer documents were signed May 20th, 2020 which had a trial period that ended on November 15th, 2020. As a point, no money exchanged hands – the value of the deal to Adam and I was going to be entirely based on the future expansion. Our existing income became the baseline, everything between us was going to be a spit of future growth. We did not “sell out,” instead we were banking on what could all do together.
But Covid-19 had other plans. As was true for everybody to some extent, our worlds simply tilted. Things that were important before were no longer important. Things we never dreamt would become priorities suddenly were front and center. New business risks and new opportunities emerged.
My Covid-19 reporting morphed into a very real business risk on December 8th, 2020 when I had a video censored by YouTube. We got a dreaded strike. Our appeal went unanswered. Neither Adam nor I could post anything to our PP channel for 7 days. A second strike would result in a two-week ban. A third would see the entire Peak Prosperity YouTube channel terminated. As we wrestled with this the election drama was unfolding and suddenly Big Tech took the censorship gloves off and became a legitimate business threat.
None of us knew where the boundaries lay. Some channels were able to mention certain words and ideas while others weren’t. Still to this day there’s no predictability to any of it.
Suddenly, and understandably, my focus on Covid was viewed as an existential business risk to our new owners. What would happen if I/we received a second strike? How about a third where the entire subscriber list and all of our Peak Prosperity content would simply evaporate into the air? What might happen to their other related content channels, would they be dragged down too by association? What would happen if someone took a medicine thinking I had advised that and decided to sue?
Let me be clear – these are all legitimate concerns. However, they also represent risks I am personally willing to take. It took a bit of time to sort out these core issues. I had to think carefully and deeply about what I valued most. I’ve worked my butt off for over a decade and, by far, the most financially successful path for me to take here would have been to mold my reporting around these realities.
I chose a different path. Adam was interested in going in a different direction for his own reasons. It was a difficult decision to make as I also had to consider Evie’s future, my kids, this farm project and the one across the street, and the life impact of taking on a very big project – sole control of this site – all of a sudden.
Given the complexity of breaking things back apart, with GBI having one set of interests, Adam a second, and myself a third, many options were explored. A buyout of my interests in both companies was explored, each of us retaining partial interests post split, and a clean split with Adam and Greylock going one way and myself and Peak Prosperity headed another.
In the end, the decision was not that hard, and the outcome was always the same for me; I value this community and my intellectual and editorial freedom. Having a clean break was the only way that finally made sense. I simply have to be free to be and say whatever I wish. Yes, having principles is an expensive habit. Luckily money is not the most important thing to me, not even close. As part of that agreement, Adam will continue to post his content here for a number of months.
I intend to spend the rest of my productive days being exactly the same sort of curious, open-minded individual that I’ve always been. It’s in my DNA. I have a strong sense of mission and purpose, and I have to be true to that. We all have a birthday and a date of death – it’s what you do with the dash between those two dates that matters. Maturity has also infused me with a strong desire to spend time with others who share and value those qualities.
It took some time for all of us to figure out exactly where we settled on the matter. It was, and remains, a complicated affair. Lawyers got involved, negotiations slowed down. That’s just how things unfolded. I’m sorry it all took longer than any of us would like, but that’s how it went.
But now we have light at the end of the tunnel. I, Chris Martenson, am going to have sole control over Peak Prosperity. I hope you will consider remaining a part of this community and helping to make it both larger and stronger.
TL:DR We all had good intentions, reality had other plans. I took us a while to sort things out. All’s well that ends well.
The Bright Future of Peak Prosperity
Peak Prosperity is going to thrive in the years to come. I have a strong sense of direction and a good working outline of what sorts of content and structure will help achieve that. I’m excited and have been working behind the scenes with several long-time members to explore these ideas in depth. Either we’re all crazy or we’re onto something really good.
The recent forum threads where people expressed the reasons that they personally valued Peak Prosperity truly moved me. Incredibly fulfilling and validating. I read every comment on the site and have saved dozens and dozens of them in a word doc as guidance for thinking about the future of Peak Prosperity.
Now is not the time to go into all of that in detail, that time will come in the near future.
But here’s a hint – I despise being tracked by Big Tech. Perhaps you do as well. I’m going to make another money-dumb, principles-based decision and eliminate any and all advertising that has any sort of tracking built in. You’re welcome.
I also plan to make the site far more user friendly and simpler to navigate. As always, this will all be going on behind the scenes and most of you won’t even be aware of the activity until it is released. I’m already working with a web dev team to begin the process. I’ll be seeking a lot of input from this community.
Also, I’ll be hiring to help run and improve operations and my fervent hope is that the perfect candidate(s) are reading this now. Those announcements/job postings will come very soon.
TL:DR – I listen carefully to what you like and don’t like about the site. With your help we can improve this site and strengthen its community.
Thank you for all your patience and expressions of concern, care and even love for this community.
Your faithful information scout,
Chris Martenson, PhD
Adam’s Announcement: The Launch of Wealthion
Boy, does it feel good to finally have this situation resolved and be able to talk openly!
It’s been so very hard to be restricted in what I could say publicly while we resolved things, especially while (pardon my french) working my ass off daily to keep the site running and producing content over the past 3 months while everyone was working things out in the background.
I’m extremely grateful for the PP tribe’s tolerance, loyalty and support as we’ve done our best to navigate a really tricky and sensitive time. I know not every decision we made in handling this pleased everyone, but please trust that we did our absolute best given the conditions.
And, like Chris, I’m very pleased where things netted out.
As Chris said above, we’re spinning off the financial resilience side of our business, which I’ll be running full-time.
Most of you are well-familiar with my many articles on money & the markets as well as my weekly interviews with highly-respected investing experts like Jim Grant, Stephanie Pomboy, Luke Gromen, Grant Williams, Jim Rogers, Ron Paul, Danielle DiMartino Booth… and sooo many others.
I’ll be building on that platform to deliver even more frequent insights from this expanding brain trust of experts. To help inform and educate folks about the challenges & opportunities facing those looking to protect and grow their financial wealth. And to connect them with like-minded, trustworthy independent financial professionals (like our long time friends at New Harbor Financial) who can make those insights actionable.
This has long been one of the most frequent and loudly-voiced needs by those who find their way to Peak Prosperity. And the customer demand from this side of the business has been growing steadily for years.
Given its growth and importance to the livelihoods of the people we have reached and referred to our partners, it deserves a full-time CEO. I’ve been eager to step into that role for some time now.
- Relevance: Nearly every expert I bring on my weekly interview series says this is the “most treacherous time” for investors they’ve ever seen in their careers. Close monitoring of both the macro environment and the dynamics playing out weekly in the markets, as well as intelligent actionable insights are now needed more than ever at this moment in history.
- Impact: Be it hedging against risk of a market crash, defending against dollar debasement/stagnant wages/rising cost of living, understanding emerging new investments classes like cryptocurrencies — the steps we take today can have massive implications on our ability to become financially free or not in the future.
- Scale: Financial Capital is the ‘gateway drug’ to the other 8 Forms of Capital we use to define as ‘true wealth’ here at Peak Prosperity. Because practically everyone cares about their money, I have the opportunity to engage much larger, more mainstream audiences for whom resilience is not currently on their radar, and shift them to start caring about it — putting millions more into lifeboats and adding their energy to the larger mission promoted here at PP.com.
As we spin it out from Peak Prosperity, we’re branding this new company Wealthion.
There are some immediate opportunities ahead to expand and uplevel the business that I’m chomping at the bit to finally be able to execute on — though being fully transparent, I’ve got the same jitters as every entrepreneur launching a new venture.
So I’m really hoping I can count on your help to get Wealthion launched as successfully as possible.
And I have the following (easy) asks of you:
- Subscribe to the brand-new Wealthion YouTube channel by going to youtube.com/wealthion — my weekly Money & Markets interviews will be moving over to that channel in just a few short weeks. Subscribing will make sure you don’t miss any going forward. And once we cross 3,000 subscribers, YouTube will take the channel a lot more seriously in terms of promoting its videos. So we really appreciate you taking a second to click the subscribe and alert buttons here.
- Send me your feedback — what experts/topics would you most like to see featured? The best ways to contact me are either via email at [email protected] or on twitter @menlobear.
This is one of those major life milestone moments for me, where as Yogi Berra advised, life presents you with a fork in the road and you take it.
Co-founding Peak Prosperity has been hands-down the professional highlight of my life to-date. Alongside Chris, I have poured my heart and soul into birthing, nurturing and operating it for more than a decade.
Releasing my hands from the wheel is hard. But I know how excited Chris is for the new direction in which he plans to take the site, and I can’t wait to see that vision unfold — just as I know he’s cheering me on in realizing Wealthion’s full potential.
This isn’t good-bye. I’ll still be on Peak Prosperity — I’ll continue posting for a number of months as I transition, and you’ll see me in the site comments and at June’s event at Joel Salatin’s Polyface Farm.
Oh, and speaking of the comments: as a parting gift, I’ll shortly be launching threaded comments on the site. It’s something we’ve been wanting to do for ages and should make user replies MUCH easier to follow now.
Here’s a preview:
We live at one of the most uncertain yet fascinating times in history. Our efforts today will not only determine our own individual destinies, but we have the opportunity to be guides for the rest of humanity.
As Chris and I both re-position to make the biggest impacts we can, I want to thank you all again for your past, current & future support of the important movement we all at this site are caretakers of.
It’s the privilege of a lifetime to play a role in this story. And I couldn’t be more excited at what we’ll accomplish from here.
Your prudent wealth steward,