Dollar Vigilante Dear Slavey…
I’m trying to accept the new reality in the United States that along with most of my middle class friends, I’m now a genuine slave. We’re all enslaved with consumer, medical, and student debt… enslaved by wages so low we can’t live on what we’re paid even if we have a job (then they take income taxes, sales taxes and much more from us, too)… enslaved by overzealous police… enslaved by the pursuit of an ‘American Dream’ that never seems to come true. Do you think we’ll ever be able to live free again and not just spend the rest of our lives fighting to survive? I deserve more.
Bonnie in Dover, Delaware
The stark reality of life during the collapse, or as we call it here at TDV, The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI) is that no one cares what you think you deserve. As this ship is sinking, it’s every man or woman for him/herself. I can tell you’ve been reacting to the financial meltdown the way you’ve been programmed to by the government. Be brave enough to stop the bleeding and de-slave yourself before you end up on the street. It’s time for you to stop letting the fascist Public Private Partnership of government and corporations who don’t care what happens to you or your family dictate how you handle your affairs.
In January 1914, Henry Ford decided to double the wages of typical auto workers on an assembly line in Detroit to $5 a day. People flocked to Michigan to snag those jobs. He did that so he could hold on to the best people to help him increase the fortunes of his company, to allow his workers to have enough money to buy the products his company manufactured (this was also possible because the workers at the Ford auto plant didn’t pay income taxes!), and to build a ‘feel good’ brand for Ford. He was acting in his own self-interest – which we applaud – and it was good PR. They had company picnics and clubs for the kids. They gave them turkeys at Christmas. It was another time – a much more prosperous time when Government and the Federal Reserve hadn’t yet taxed and inflated the entire economy to the edge of the fiscal cliff.
Despite what you are told in the propaganda of the mainstream media, the US is not “the richest country on Earth” anymore. It used to be… decades ago. Now it is the most indebted country on Earth, by a wide margin. The total debt and liabilities of the Federal Government alone work out to $250,000 per person. Plus, total personal debt per household in the US is over $112,000. So, a family of four in a household in the US has over $1.1 million in debt overhanging it. Thanks to all this debt, which was perfectly predictable given that the entire US financial and monetary system is based on a system based on debt and fiat currency, the US economy has been completely hollowed out. Companies have been fleeing the US and it’s unrelenting imposition of taxes and regulations. This means a loss of jobs and now it just continues to spiral lower in a self-fulfilling feedback loop as the newly jobless and indebted turn to unfunded government programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps – of which 45 000 000 Americans currently use), in turn these increased demands on government programs push the bureaucrats to raise taxes and increase regulation further – compounding the problem.
While many of what are called “emerging countries” like Mexico have seen their stock markets grow nearly 1,000% in the last 10 years the US markets have stayed flat… truly a lost decade. To make matters worse, with the Keynesian Kool-Aid drinkers in charge they are making an already bad thing – the ongoing depression – into an even worse thing. In a 1930s style depression there is only good thing that happens… prices drop substantially so when people’s incomes drops they can still survive. But helicopter Ben is creating an inflationary depression, also known as stagflation – and was last with us in a big way in the 1970s. Middle class wages have dropped an average of 20% in the last 10 years. And it is only going to get worse from here so just get used to it. We’ll talk about de-slaving your source of income in a future column.
People in America have been caught up in that nationalistic “American Dream” you mentioned. See this video for more on how it has worked to entrap you into a life of slavery.
The American dream really means buying lots of stuff society pressured them to think they needed and until recently – thinking they could substitute real earnings with a house they bought with no money down acting as an ATM machine. And, driving themselves more deeply into debt and transforming themselves into slaves stuck in an endless cycle of trying to pay it all off while keeping themselves going by saying, “I’ll be happy if I can just get ahead again” – like down on their luck gamblers at a roulette wheel. There’s a lot of medical and student loan debt to deal with – again the result of the US federal government consistently subsidising “education” system. It’s a self-reinforcing slave cycle.
The system that the fascist corporations have set up in concert with the government and the Federal Reserve is designed to make sure you can never pay off your debt. If you’re a typical American hourly wage earner, you will never earn enough to pay both the ever increasing interest/fees and the principal which will keep you a low wage slave for the rest of your life. …IF you don’t jump off the hamster wheel.
As you’ve read in my earlier columns, there’s no reason to be a financial slave to the system. If you’re deep in debt and too afraid to use the techniques I’ve outlined in earlier columns, go ahead and declare bankruptcy. You have to stop letting crony corporations use your good nature against you and shame you into paying them money you don’t have. Sure, part of it may have been your own fault for buying into this system and going into a lot of these debts… if you had read TDV years ago maybe you would have seen that was a surefire trap. But, if you have unpayable debts now the first thing to do is get rid of them. The next thing to do is to not buy back into the system and to find ways to live outside of the system.
The U.S. is broken and heading for collapse, but there’s no reason why you have to go down with the ship. Keep reading my column for de-slaving tips. Coming up soon I’ll be writing about how to wipe out your student debt – legally, and how to get the prescriptions you need but can’t afford. Stop feeling guilty… stop living like you’ve been told, and little by little you’ll get closer to feeling like you have some control over your future.
Slavey makes his middle class living on a contract basis in Southern California. He’s not poor but definitely not rich – and plans to stay in California for the duration of the economic collapse. The opinions and advice in Dear Slavey should always be checked by your own experts, but has guerrilla style street-smart advice for middle class people on how to negotiate their way through the Police State of America