Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Our Nation's economic future is bleak

Our future is bleak and it will be like nothing we’ve ever seen in our lifetime or I would say anyone’s life time. 

Over the last few years we’ve seen not billions, but trillions upon trillions of dollars committed to bank bailouts, toxic asset purchases, stock market liquidity infusion, so-called job creation programs, tax breaks and mortgage modifications. The Obama administration has taken every opportunity to tout these programs as evidence of success. 

On the one hand, we’re told that the recovery, albeit slower than expected, is in full swing. We were also told in late 2008 that this was a recession. Any discussion about the possibility of another Great Depression was taken off the table by government, media and mainstream economists. The idea that America could enter another depression was simply not possible, and anyone who spoke of such thing was a fear mongering pessimist.

Yet, it seems that we were on the very brink of complete meltdown in 2008. So close, in fact, that administration officials now claim the President’s policies are responsible for avoiding the very scenario that was completely denied as a possibility three years ago:

The American economy was falling off the cliff in the fall of ’08 and the first months of this administration. And he put in place the most creative, the most forceful set of economy measure we have ever done as a country. And because of that, we’ve prevented a second Great Depression and the economy has now been growing for more than a year and a half.

~ Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, Meet the Press, July 10, 2011

At the same time Mr. Geithner explains to us how saddling us with trillions more in debt and expanding government intervention into every aspect of our lives has avoided depression, he warns that things are going to remain tough for the average American. His words are eerily reminiscent of Gerald Celente’s 2009 forecast: 

I think it’s going to take a long time still. This is a very tough economy. And I think for a lot of people it’s going to be – it’s going to feel very hard, harder than anything they’ve experienced in their lifetime now, for some time to come.
The consensus among the experts who didn’t see the 2008 recession until six months after it was official and then told us the economy would be back to normal by 2011 are the same people who are telling us that a Great Depression has been avoided. 

As in 2008, the Great Depression debate is off the table.

For those paying attention, however, it should be clear that the next Great Depression was signaled by the 2008 economic and equities market crash, and the last three years of policy initiatives have done nothing to fix the fundamental problems that caused the crisis in the first place.  An argument could be made that things are actually much worse now – on a number of fronts including the economy, jobs, real estate, deficit spending, national debt, and cost of living – than they were three years ago.

If you’ve haven’t guessed, it is very likely that the reason Americans are going to experience times tougher than anything they have experienced in their lifetimes is because our nation is fully engrossed in the next Great Depression.

It’s real. It’s happening right now.  Prepare yourself financially, mentally, spiritually, and physically – because it’s only going to get worse.

Update - Skywatch mobil guard towers

In December 2010, I wrote about these guard towers coming to your local Walmart and other stores.  Well, they finally made it to my neck of the woods.  Here is a link to my previous article police state expansion mobil guard.

These were taken a couple of days ago.  There is nothing special going on in town...no celebrations, no National holidays...nothing.  So, why is this guard tower up?  Hmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Things to do this month - July

This month focus on the elderly and those with disabilities.

___ 1) Assist the person in creating a basic stockpile of frequently used items (medications, Depends, a spare set of glasses, specialized liquid foods, etc.).

___ 2) Make the person’s home physically safer by installing grab bars in the bathroom, making sure all floors have non-skid surfaces, installing sturdy railing along stairways, etc.

___ 3) Take the person’s name off of their mailbox and leave a clearly legible address (calling someone by their name, which is easily found on a mailbox, is one ploy used by con artists to gain entry into an elderly
person’s home).

___ 4) Make sure the person has a non-published number, is on the national “do not call” list and that the digital greeting on their phone answering system is used instead of their own voice.

___ 5) Put up “No Trespassing”, “Beware of Dog” and “No Soliciting” signs.

___ 6) Check the person’s credit report for fraudulent or suspicious activity at least annually.

___ 7) Make sure the person’s Will, Living Will, Power of Attorney and, if needed, POLST documents are all up to date.

___ 8) Keep a frequently updated list of medication handy, consider using a mail order pharmacy if transportation is an issue and assist the person by separating their medications into a plastic medication box which is divided by day.

___ 9) Discuss ahead of time at what point the person will discontinue driving.

___ 10) Use/schedule community services as needed (ie: Home Health, Meals on Wheels, Hospice, etc.).

___ 11) Be well aware of the person’s financial affairs (ie: consider a joint checking account, reviewing their bank transactions, etc.).

___ 12) Regularly review the benefits they are entitled to (SSI, VA, pension, etc.).

___ 13) Visit the person and/or ensure that others visit regularly.

___ 14) Discuss ahead of time downsizing to a condo, mother-in-law apartment, assisted living facility, etc.

___ 15) Look for signs of depression, dementia or maltreatment by care givers and seek assistance if needed.

___ 16) Go to doctor’s appointments with the person and have them sign a waiver of privacy so that you can be kept informed of their medical condition by their doctor.

___ 17) Encourage them to give away or clearly label items they wish specific people to have after their death (this allows them to see others enjoying the items while they are still alive and eliminates the possible bitter disputes over their property after death).

___ 18) Assist them in planning their funeral ahead of time (it is much easier on those left behind if these decisions are made while everyone is in a relaxed state of mind instead of after a death when people are grieving).

___ 19) Encourage friends and family members to give food or gift cards in lieu of knick knacks and other things that will just gather dust for special occasions.

___ 20) Involve the person in preparedness planning; provide them information on how they would communicate with you and evacuate their home if this becomes necessary.

___ 21) Ensure the person has a quality diet, regular exercise and regular socialization.

___ 22) Consider installing a home monitoring service for falls, fires and intruders.

___ 23) Education keeps the brain active—teach the person about new technology, discuss current events and provide access to classes, crossword puzzles and other mentally stimulating activities.

___ 24) Stay in regular communication with the person by phone, visits and email.

___ 25) Take extra precautions during times of snow/ice, extreme heat or other severe weather.

___ 26) Encourage the person to continue being active in the community by volunteering and sharing their talents/skills/wisdom with others.

___ 27) Make a point to learn from the person. Those who have lived through the Depression, wars and other socio-economic challenges often have much to teach others about how to survive.

___ 28) Inform the person about the many types of fraud that are often perpetrated against seniors (ie: sweepstakes, fraudulent charities, investment schemes, etc.).

___ 29) Consider installing a safe or even having items stored off the premises (safe deposit box) if the person has many valuable items in order to protect them from theft or robbery.

___ 30) Teach the person how not to be a target for physical or property crimes (rape, robbery, home invasion, etc) and assist them with hardening their homes against such crimes (install solid doors with deadbolts, window locks, security systems, etc).

___ 31) Make the person part of your preparedness plan. Include them in drills, educate them as you would anyone else in your family or on your team, and take advantage of their knowledge and abilities as well.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Almost got scammed on Craigslist - sellers BEWARE

My wife and I are selling our nice washer and dryer and received a response from a woman who wanted to purchase them.  She saw the pics on Craigslist.org and wanted to pay us full price for them.  Immediately, my "HR Manager" intuition began to kick in and felt that something was amiss.  

Through email correspondence she said that she was going to send us the money via PayPal and wanted us to make arrangements with her shipping company so they can come pick up the washer and dryer.  Shortly thereafter, I began receiving "PayPal confirmations" that the money was transferred to our account...but hold on a minute...there was an additional $550.00 included.  (My wife began checking our paypal accounts and there was no money sent).  The additional $550 was so that WE could send the money to her shipping company via Western Union.

But this is what got my attention...this is the original email message "PayPal" sent concerning the transfer of money.  Please not all the punctual and spelling errors, different sized fonts were used, the grammer is horrible.

" We have received an order from one of our customer to make an instant payment of 2050.00USD to your PayPal account. The payment has been made successfully and the money has been credited to your PayPal account  but you will not have access to it . However, since this money is meant for a purchase or a service that involve a Shipping Company.We have to receive a confirmation that you have sent the pick up cost to Shipping Company before the money will be available for spending. This is due to the large increase in the rate of the online scams recorded last year (2009). We have changed some of our rules and regulation to make sure our clients, are safe from scam, PayPal in conjunction with The FBI and The IFCC has invented certain preventive measure to ensure the safety of our customers.

 Such measure are:

1. Once a payment is made,A confirmation Email will be sent to the seller that the payment has been made to state the transaction details which has been sent to you. Also a confirmation is sent to the buyer that the money has been deducted from his or her account. So once you get this mail,You should take necessary action and get back to us with the confirmation that you have sent the pick up cost to the shipping company. Once we have confirmed the information provided with the shipping company, the money will be available instantly. 

2. Once a payment is made and it has been approved by PayPal, such transaction is Sealed (because both seller and buyer must have come to a conclusion before payment is made by the buyer) so therefore neither the buyer or seller can cancel this transaction or ask for the returned to the buyer'account. Also, this is where we generate our income, because the more transaction made through PayPal, the more we generate our Income. 

3. Failure to abide by these laid down safety measures by PayPal may leads to suspension from PayPal and further more invitation to an interrogation with the F.B.I

 So can you see we are very considerate about the safety of both buyer and seller.

Note: that the pick up cost has been included in the payment.

Thank you for using PayPal!

Help Center - Contact Us
Help by Email
Our Customer Service team is specially trained to address all account inquiries. Send us an email and 
we will reply promptly. Contact Customer Service (transactiononline@officeemail.net)"

AND This email

"You have received a PayPal Payment of $2050.00.00 USD from Liana Rose(sweetyankeey@gmail.com).

A temporary hold has been placed on this transaction!

As mentioned in the receipt of Payment and as per New PayPal Payment policy, we have fully debited the total amount (above) from the buyer's account which includes the buyer's shipper's pick up fees.

In order to complete this transaction and get the funds approved in your account. We advice you go to nearest Western Union Office, and send the$500.00 USD to the Agent and send us a Scanned Copy/Photograph of your Western Union Transaction Receipt.

NOTE: This is important as a security measure to ensure safety of this transaction. 

Please, find below the name and address of the Transport Agent where the Funds would be sent via Western Union Money Transfer.
Transport Company
Tyisha Deanne powell
4430 Fulton Industrial,
Blvd SW Atlanta,
GA 30336,

I was also thinking WTF...Why use Western Union to send the money to the shipping company when SHE could just as easily sent them the money via PayPal.  Immediately, my wife and I called PayPal and advised them of the apparent fraud.

We told the PayPal representative everything we felt was wrong:

1.  The woman didn't want to haggle about the price (red flag)
2.  She wanted us to use Western Union to send money to her shipping company not PayPal
3.  She wanted us to send the shipping company the money rather than her sending it
4.  Why put a hold on our money until we send the shippers money...they should get paid when they pick up the merchandise.
4.  We checked the email address from "PayPal" and it was from @officenet.com
5.  We checked the "Shipping company" email address and it was @tx.am (red flag)

The PayPal representative agreed with with us and will be looking in the matter.

If it smells rotten it probably is... buyer and seller beware. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Taking contol of rain water - part 1

Since I am out of work, I've decided that I'm going to begin taking control of the rain water.  Never mind that is after the rain season already; nevertheless, it's time I begin a new project anyway.  The rain gutters were installed last year, but the rain run off just runs out into the grass (weeds)...not good is one is going to collect that water for next years growing season.

First thing I had to do was dig the trenches to catch the rain water.  Yes, that was dug out by hand.

Then I had to get the pipe and sleeve.  Fortunately, the sleeve came with the pipe.  For rock, I raked it off my driveway.  It's all stone anyway.

Since I am also installing a soaker hose (which will ultimately be attached to rain barrels) I had to dig out under the concrete walkway...oh yea, the water drain hose is going under the walkway as well and will be attached to a four inch pipe.  That pipe will drain into either water tanks or a pond in the front yard (also called a tank).

Rain water will be drained away from the foundation.

Past the foundation and ultimately to another four inch pipe to a pond or tank.

Back fill with rock, weed blocker fabric, and mulch.  More plants will come later (after the Summer season).