Friday, October 24, 2014

Rules Of The Road

Most articles on hitchhiking start with something like, "When I was in college, once I decided to hitch to Yosemite over Spring Break..." or something to that effect. Now, there are a few of us who actually hitchhiked to get to places without being on vacation, like work or to see a girlfriend or to pick free apples from an orchard in the next town. Whatever the cause, whether you're planning a long trip or a short sprint across the county, it's always good to bear a few things in mind.

For one thing, the police (Sheriff's deputies, Highway Patrol, etc.) always check you out if you're trying to hitch a ride, so keep illegal contraband tucked well away. I say this because the old hitching adage of gas, grass, or ass is still generally in effect today. Plus, it's not a bad idea to have some kind of a deterrent from bad actors, you know, like pepper spray. It's a bit difficult to conceal your uncle's AK-47 in your pack. Besides, if you need it, it'll take forever to pull it out. Best leave it with your uncle. Thanks for offering, uncle.

Generally speaking, hitchhiking is not just for hippies, ski bums, and axe murders. It is, rather, one of the easiest ways to see the world on a budget, and make a few new friends in the process. All you need is some common sense, a little etiquette, and an opposable thumb (unless you're traipsing through Thailand or the Middle East, in which case, do NOT stick your thumb up and out. Just don't).

So, although it’s not mandatory to give your driver anything, it is good practice to offer to pitch in on gas if you can afford it. It's karma, dude.

Remember, safety first. The best way to stay safe is to be like the Boy Scouts: be prepared. Plan properly and give yourself options. Don’t depend entirely on anyone for anything whether on the road or at home. I'm sure you've heard all the scary stories about thumbing a ride in the US. It's mostly hype. However, with that said, don't be a damn fool -- you're still getting in a stranger's car. Stay alert, buckle up, and, if at any time they pop Rob Zombie into the tape deck, immediately bail out.

If one of these picks you up, you must pay before you get off.
Good countries in which to hitchhike include New Zealand, Cuba, Netherlands, Germany, and Israel. Texas, mainly because of the oppressive police presence, is not a particularly good place to hitchhike.

Here's an obvious tip you should know but probably don't always follow when traveling: If you want to increase your chances of being picked up (on the road or at the bar), be sure to shower and dress like someone you’d want to travel with; no one wants to do someone a favor when it means stinking up their car.

There is a method to successful hitchhiking. For instance, a long trip (cross-country) requires a good map. It pays to know where you're going. Become familiar with the road numbering system, if there is one. On US interstate highways, even numbered roads go east/west, and the higher the number, the more northern the interstate. Odd numbered roads go north/south, and the higher the number, the more eastern the interstate. Three-digit interstate numbers indicate spurs and loops off the main interstates. In Europe, two digit numbers ending in 5 indicate a reference road that goes from north to south, whereas those ending in 0 indicate reference roads that go from east to west.

Take precautions. Scan your ID (and passport, if traveling internationally) and e-mail it to yourself. If it gets stolen, print out copies at a library. For passports, go to an embassy with your copies and do what you need to do to get a new passport. Americans must provide two passport photos and fill out a few forms to get a temporary passport.

Make a legible sign stating where you're headed. It gives the appearance of legitimacy. It tells people that you're on a planned trip.

Hitch from a good spot. Get on the side of the city or town that's in the direction you're traveling. E.g. If you're heading west, get on the west side of town. Your spot should be on a straight stretch of road (700 meters in either direction). Cars on a super-highway are going too fast to stop -- chances are better when the speed limit is 50 or less. Make eye contact with passing drivers. Wearing sunglasses is not a good idea because it obscures eye contact.

Do I need to tell you that the cars need to be traveling in your chosen direction?

Have a visible and easily manageable pull-over and pick-up area nearby.

No other hitchhikers in sight -- if someone is there first, remain out of sight and wait your turn.

As mentioned before, present yourself well. Look like you know where you are going, and what you are doing. Have a clean, well-kept appearance, hold a clear, neat sign, and smile!

More interesting but useful factoids: You're less likely to get picked up if you wear too much denim. Shorts on male hitchers are looked down upon in many rural communities in the American South and West.

Super short hair tends to make people assume that you are from an institutional setting (prison, military, asylum, boarding school, etc), or recently released from one. This can work either for or against you.

Couples tend to wait longer, based on 'real estate' issues in passing vehicles, however, make it clear from the start that you're in a relationship with the woman, or else the driver might go after her; be protective.

Rain will not increase your chances of getting picked up, especially if you're totally drenched. Snow, however, or a recent snowfall, however, tends to increase odds of getting a ride. People generally don't mind the occasional snowflake on their upholstery, as it brushes off easily, before it melts, but rain on clothes tends to collect in seat cushions.

I cannot stress this next point enough. Be selective about which rides you take. You'll actually get to your destination faster if you pay attention. It's better to travel 50 miles and get dropped off at a gas station or truck stop than to travel 100 miles and get dropped off in a bad hitchhiking spot. So use that map! If you've been on a busy roadway for more than two hours and people aren't stopping, you're probably on the wrong road or the wrong side of the road. Duh! If someone stops and you don't want to take the ride, for whatever reasons, tell them you want to wait for a ride that's longer or takes you to a better position. Just because they pull over doesn't mean you should get in. Always follow your intuition.

Hitchhiking across the US takes about 4-6 days. West to east is faster than east to west.

For obvious reasons, the less baggage the better. However, a backpack clearly shows your intentions, while being empty-handed may look a bit suspicious. Using a suitcase or garbage bag instead of a knapsack automatically voids you from most rides, as well.

In most European countries it is all right to hitch on smaller or secondary roads, but illegal and very unpleasant on highways.

If it's raining, an easily removable poncho or umbrella may indicate to picky drivers their car won't get soaked. That said, if you have time, it is often better just to wait out a rainstorm.

Many drivers will be more likely to pick up a hitcher who appears to be walking. Do not walk away from a good hitch-hiking spot though! You are more likely to get a ride in a good spot where a car can stop, than in a bad spot, walking.

Be polite with the people who stop to take you in their car, and remember to thank them for the ride.

Hitching is anything but an exact science but cars with kids and (mysteriously enough) camper-vans are tough crowds. Consequently areas full of tourists or holiday travelers are hard nuts to crack.

The "hitchhiker's thumb" is unknown in parts of Asia. In South Korea, simply put your arm out with your palm facing down, then make a gesture for getting someone to come to you.

In the UK and most of Europe, it works great. Befriend a truck driver and get them to give you an old used Tachograph Chart. Hold this up to passing trucks when hitching, this will make you appear to be a fellow truck driver and therefore greatly increase your chances of them stopping to give you a lift. Since North America does not use Tachograph, this would probably not have any effect beside confuse the drivers.

Do not hitchhike next to a disabled vehicle; you do not need the cops or owner investigating. Also, most passing motorists, upon learning the vehicle isn't yours, will probably decline your ride.

Do not hitch at night, unless in a well-lit spot, and avoid hitching on paydays in rural areas. You do not want a passing drunk to clip you.

Hitchhiking is illegal in some states and countries like Australia.

Not only in Asia, but in some European countries, the "hitchhiker's thumb" may be taken as an insult.

Each time you hitchhike, you are taking a risk by getting into a car with a stranger. Exercise caution and good judgment, but be aware that caution and good judgment won't protect you if you are picked up by someone with ulterior motives.

Hitchhiking on the highway can be dangerous. Use judgment as to whether the ramp is better than the main line.

Watch out for cops. Even if it is legal where you are, you may get questioned. Over-zealous cops are everywhere.

Don’t hitch in places where it is important for the driver to concentrate on the road, especially at crosswalks or areas where children are at play.

And so, that's it. If you find yourself looking for an adventure or you just want to get across town because your car blew a rod, use these common sense rules and you'll be fine. Unless, that is, you run across an inbred yankee family in the backwoods of northern New York State. All those weirdoes don't just live in Georgia, you know.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Corruption Is Like Shifting Sand

It is breathtaking how corrupt our elected officials in the U.S. government have become.

Corruption is so endemic in American society that most simply accept it as "normal" and ignore it. "It's not that bad," they insist. But shouldn't we all get angry when we find out that the Federal Reserve has sent billions of dollars in bailout money to addresses in the Cayman Islands? Shouldn't we all be slightly curious when 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says he is "not going to spend my time focusing on the Federal Reserve"? Shouldn't we be amazed when Nancy Pelosi says that "elections shouldn't matter"? Shouldn't we all demand someone be held accountable when we find out that a CBO analysis shows that the "$38.5 billion" in spending cuts will only reduce the budget deficit for this year by $352 million dollars? On top of everything else, shouldn't we all be absolutely horrified when the TSA gropes little 6 year old girls and virtually none of our politicians demand change?

Perhaps you've already heard of the "budget cut deal" where 38.5 billion dollars in budget cuts are largely illusory.

According to the Washington Post, the Congressional Budget Office says that the budget deal will only cut the budget deficit for this year by less than one percent of what was being claimed by Republican and Democrat leaders.

"The Congressional Budget Office estimate shows that compared with current spending rates the spending bill due for a House vote Thursday would pare just $352 million from the deficit through Sept. 30. About $8 billion in cuts to domestic programs and foreign aid are offset by nearly equal increases in defense spending."

If that's the case, then why bother at all?.

The reality is that U.S. government budget increases by over 2 million dollars every single minute. So the entire "savings" from this "budget deal" will account for approximately 3 hours of government spending.

The U.S. government ran a budget deficit of $188 billion dollars for the month of March alone. We are in debt up to our eyeballs and it is getting worse at an exponential rate.

As a responsible citizen, YOU must understand that neither political party is the least bit serious about dealing with our debt problem. Why? Because they've got theirs, baby!

Have you heard the one about the Federal Reserve sending billions In bailout aid to the rich in the Cayman Islands? It's not a joke.

Most Americans don't even begin to understand what the Federal Reserve is, and yet the Federal Reserve gets to throw trillions of dollars around while being more or less completely unaccountable the entire time.

In an article for Rolling Stone, Matt Taibbi claims that "The Fed sent billions in bailout aid to banks in places like Mexico, Bahrain and Bavaria, billions more to a spate of Japanese car companies, more than $2 trillion in loans each to Citigroup and Morgan Stanley, and billions more to a string of lesser millionaires and billionaires with Cayman Islands addresses. "Our jaws are literally dropping as we're reading this," says Warren Gunnels, an aide to Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. "Every one of these transactions is outrageous.""

So how does it benefit the American people to send billions of dollars to some ultra-wealthy people down in the Cayman Islands?

In light of what we have already discovered, it is absolutely amazing that Congress still refuses to authorize a complete audit of the Federal Reserve.

The corruption within the Fed is simply astounding. Especially when one considers that the United States is a country that was intended to be led by its citizens.

Unfortunately, many of our top politicians openly declare that they have no intention of going after the Federal Reserve.

If there was any doubt that Mitt Romney is just another shill for the establishment, please read the following two statements by Romney.

According to Politico, Romney recently told CNBC's Larry Kudlow that he is not concerned about the Federal Reserve at all. "I think Ben Bernanke is a student of monetary policy; he's doing as good a job as he thinks he can do," Romney said when Kudlow asked what kind of job Bernanke is doing. "I'm not going to spend my time going after Ben Bernanke. I'm not going to spend my time focusing on the Federal Reserve."

That about sums it up. The Republican candidate with perhaps the greatest amount of "establishment support" says that he thinks Bernanke is doing a good job and he does not plan to spend any time focusing on the Federal Reserve.

Moving on to other famous loudmouths, Nancy Pelosi recently declared that "Elections shouldn't matter." During one of her speeches, Pelosi implored establishment Republicans to "take back your party" so that elections won't "matter" as much. Huh?

"To my Republican friends: take back your party. So that it doesn’t matter so much who wins the election, because we have shared values about the education of our children, the growth of our economy, how we defend our country, our security and civil liberties, how we respect our seniors. Because there are so many things at risk right now — perhaps in another question I’ll go into them, if you want. But the fact is that elections shouldn’t matter as much as they do… But when it comes to a place where there doesn’t seem to be shared values then that can be problematic for the country, as I think you can see right now."

Apparently Pelosi wants America to return to a time when all of us just went along with the false left/right paradigm and when we were all content to sleep while the establishment agenda rolled along.

And finally, there's the case of a 6 year old girl shaken down and molested by the TSA. If you haven't heard of this already, you're living under a rock. How far have we fallen when a 6 year old girl has to have her private areas touched in public by the TSA before she is allowed to get on an airplane?

This what America has become in a few short years. This is what George Bush meant when he cautioned the American public about a new world order. We will now subject ourselves to anything as long as the authorities insist it will keep us a little bit safer. Soon, America is going to be unrecognizable.

One town in Missouri has actually banned Girl Scouts from selling cookies in their own front yards. How crazy is that? Just try opening up a lemonade stand and you may be faced by a SWAT team.

In Cleveland, authorities have announced plans to have "trash supervisors" snoop through trash cans to ensure people are actually recycling according to city guidelines.

The control freaks we keep voting into office seem to have an obsession with running every detail of our lives.

Houston Mayor Anise Parker w/wedded partner.
In many areas of the nation we aren't even allowed to perform acts of kindness anymore. For example, in Houston, Texas, a couple named Bobby and Amanda Herring that had been feeding homeless people for over a year has been banned by the city from doing so. As you've probably heard, Houston has other problems surrounding its homosexual rights agenda. The lesbian mayor has recently backed the city's lawyers in a move to subpoena sermons and notes from five fundamentalist preachers.

At one public school in the Chicago area, children have been banned from bringing their lunches from home. Instead, it is mandatory that they eat the food that the cafeteria serves.

At all levels, our system of government has become corrupted beyond all recognition. What happened to individual freedom? What happened to the US Constitution? Government corruption is out of control and it is getting worse with each passing day.

Washington is rife with corruption, much of which is actually legal. The politicians and other insiders insist that more ethics laws and lobbying rules are the solution. Some even say the only answer is campaign finance laws that restrict 1st Amendment rights.

Make no mistake, leftists and globalists are behind the corruption. Republicans and Democrats are simply two ends of the same stick and both are equally corrupt. Unfortunately, the worst of the two now control Washington. They use Marxist ideals and revolutionary tactics to further an agenda of collective subjugation. Equality has replaced liberty as the battle cry for the zombie masses. They are as insane as your ex-wife and her crazy Aunt Harriet locked away in the attic. More to the point, your life, opinions, and freedom means nothing to them other than a threat to their own quest for absolute power. Wake up, America. Throw out the bums.

A sampling of documented corruption in the US:

2009–present -- Barack Obama Administration
Executive Branch

Veterans Health Administration scandal of 2014 - It was discovered that officials in the Phoenix VA hospital lied about how long the wait times were for veterans to see a doctor. An investigation of delays is being conducted by the Veterans Affairs Office of the Inspector General. The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, General Eric Shinseki, voluntarily resigned.

ATF gunwalking scandal – Attorney General Eric Holder was held in Contempt of Congress after refusing to release all documents which the House of Representatives had demanded concerning the Fast and Furious gun walking operation. (2012)

Terence Flynn, an appointee of Barack Obama to the National Labor Relations Board, resigned in May 2012 after being accused of serious ethical violations by leaking information to the National Association of Manufacturers.

Martha N. Johnson, head of the General Services Administration, fired two top GSA officials and then resigned herself after it was revealed that $822,000 had been spent in Las Vegas on a four-day training conference for 300 GSA employees. (2010)

IRS admitted to inappropriate investigation of conservative political groups associated with the Tea Party. President Obama labeled the IRS’s actions "inexcusable." He demanded and accepted the resignation of Steven T. Miller Acting Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service. Other actions arising from the scandal included:

Joseph H. Grant, commissioner of the IRS Tax-exempt and Government entities division, resigned on May 16.

Lois Lerner, head of the IRS Office of Exempt Organizations, stated she had not done anything wrong and then took the Fifth before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. She retired after an internal investigation found that she neglected her duties and was going to call for her ouster.

Legislative Branch

David Rivera Congressman (R-FL) was indicted as a co-conspirator in an $81,000 campaign-finance scheme to prop up a little-known Democratic candidate who used the illegal cash to trash Rivera’s rival in the Democratic primary.(2012)

Rick Renzi (R-AZ) on June 12, 2013 was found guilty of 17 counts against him, which included wire fraud, conspiracy, extortion, racketeering, money laundering and making false statements to insurance regulators.

Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) was arrested on December 23, 2012 and later pled guilty to drinking and driving in a Virginia court. The court fined him 250 dollars. He was sentenced to 180 days in prison, but served no time.

Trey Radel (R-FL) was arrested on October 29, 2013 in Washington, D.C. for possession of cocaine after purchasing the drug from an undercover law enforcement officer. As a first time offender, he pled guilty to a misdemeanor in a Washington, D.C. court, and was sentenced to one year probation and fined $250. Radel took a leave of absence from office to undergo substance abuse treatment following his conviction. Following treatment, he initially returned to office with the intent of finishing his term, but eventually resigned on January 27, 2014.

Jesse L. Jackson Jr. (D-IL) pled guilty to one felony count of fraud for using $750,000 of campaign money to buy personal items such as stuffed animals, elk heads and fur capes. His wife, Sandi Jackson, who is a Chicago City Alderman, pled guilty to filing false income tax statements at the same time.

Laura Richardson (D-CA) was found guilty on seven counts of violating US House rules by improperly using her staff to campaign for her, destroying the evidence and tampering with witness testimony. The House Ethics Committee ordered Richardson to pay a fine of $10,000. (2012)

John Ensign (R-NV) resigned his Senate seat on May 3, 2011, just before the Senate Ethics Committee could examine possible fiscal violations in connection with his extramarital affair with Cynthia Hampton. (2011) (see Federal sex scandals) In May 2012, aide Doug Hampton (R) in what became the John Ensign scandal reached a plea deal with prosecutors, the details of which have not yet been released.

Michael Grimm (R-NY) has been indicted for campaign finance violations. He has not been proven guilty.

Judicial Branch

G. Thomas Porteous Federal Judge for Eastern Louisiana was unanimously impeached by the US House of Representatives on charges of bribery and perjury in March 2010. He was convicted by the US Senate and removed from office. He had been appointed by Democrat Bill Clinton. (2010)

Samuel B. Kent Federal District Judge of Galveston, Texas, was sentenced to 33 months in prison for lying about sexually harassing two female employees. He had been appointed to office by Republican George H. W. Bush in 1990. (2009)

Stop Being a Slave

Whether you want to admit it or not, there are conspiracies in the world, and those conspiracies are always conducted by people “in the know” against those who are ignorant or naive of back-room machinations.

Past slavery was largely based on force, but modern-day slavery is even more widespread because globalists use all the scientific tools at their disposal to win hearts and control minds, convincing people that they are free, so they must be living self-directed lives.

There are signs that the mind-pyramids that technocrats have built in order to enforce their 21st-century global plantation slave system are unsustainable.Many of us believe that freedom is the natural state of man and anything else is a perversion and a crime.

In that regard, here are 10 ways that you can help collapse the pyramids of control.

1. Media and Intelligence - Information is knowledge and knowledge is power — this is where it all starts. Turn off the TV, stop passively receiving information that turns you into an idiot at the teat of the “idiot box.” Get creative: start a blog, a neighborhood newsletter, radio show, public access TV or YouTube channel, write encouraging letters to companies you appreciate and nasty ones to those you boycott; DO something; anything to increase awareness. Homeschooling is another great way to help short circuit the negative influences of systematic programming. Even if you don’t agree with homeschooling, or are not able, there are concepts that you can help introduce into your public school to enhance education. Intelligence – there are technologies to thwart constant surveillance, as well as low-tech solutions to high-tech tyranny. The Internet is being used to monitor the public, but it also provides an opportunity for the public to watch and report the real criminals. Use the system against itself.

2. Health and Agriculture - Why do tyrannical systems always move to declare methods of independence such as farming, vitamins, raw milk, and natural medication like cannabis as underground contraband systems that threaten the health of society? Clearly because this is a cornerstone of freedom. Learn to make your own medicines, trade on the underground, support other states (and countries) who have embraced food freedom, and stand your ground by forming local community resistance against food and health tyranny. Moreover, simply making your mind and body stronger by pursuing what is natural and healthy will give you more power to challenge the system in every other way.

3. Energy and Technology - Support true economic development and pursue open source solutions to all technological problems that can affect humanity on the widest scale. These are the technologies that have been suppressed in the past, their creators destroyed; but now there are too many people pursuing goals to free humanity. Embrace innovation and technology, but only as it leads to self-empowerment, self-determination, and genuinely helps the human and environmental condition. There are reportedly many free-energy patents being kept from the public. These technologies can’t be kept secret forever as long as the Internet remains free and open. Support all efforts to maintain Internet freedom and the right to pursue innovation.

4. Mobility and Flexibility - Always be willing to adapt and move. The structure of tyranny might be global, but there are always pockets of freedom that tyranny ignores — normally based on economic interest. Become adaptable, don’t buy into the “American Dream” of having possessions to define your self-worth. Once you discard the unimportant things, look for specific towns, states, or countries to escape economic decline and those which promote freedom. It’s a difficult decision to pick up and move, especially when extended family comes into play, but discuss your ideas and the evidence for your concerns openly and honestly, and be the first to pioneer the building of a new future — if things begin to collapse in earnest, you will soon be sought after by those who once doubted your “crazy” reasoning.

5. Prepare for the Worst - Along the same lines as being mobile and flexible, make sure that you store enough supplies to get through a few months or more of tough times. The current system relies on your dependence and they can easily control those who live just-in-time lifestyles. Most people don’t realize how much they “need” the system until something like a blizzard knocks out their power and wipes out the grocery store shelves. It’s wise to store back-up food, have the ability to produce food, gather tools and other items needed during power outages or other disasters, and actively pursue any and all other survival prepping and self-sufficiency techniques.

6. Refuse to Pay Unjust Debt - This is a moral decision based on the information that much of what was created to be a “loan” was based on a predatory system. As they say, ignorance of the law is no excuse, and that is duly noted, but when confronted with an enemy that has deliberately contrived devious ways to steal productivity and the fruits of honest labor, then the principle of justifiable self-defense is invoked. Forget about your credit score; it is the invisible chain that keeps you in prison. Refuse to pay debts that you know were fraudulently imposed. Remember, the banks never had the money they “lent” to you in the first place; they created it out of nothing to buy your servitude. If you are hesitant to simply quit paying the criminal banks, then learn how to reduce your exposure to all debts.

7. Create New Banking Systems - We have seen economic collapse taking down countries like dominoes across the third world, and, if you can do the math, we seem to be headed the same direction. The money junkies in the Federal Reserve and our federal government cannot and will not stop. It is up to us to develop systems which permit us to completely withdraw our support for the current system and shield us from manipulated collapses. This may be the most productive way to break free from modern slavery; whether it’s switching to local credit unions, storing precious metals instead of cash, engaging in barter systems or using alternative currencies, or supporting full-blown monetary reform, reliance upon the imposed system is what props it up.

8. Learn a Skill - Learn as many skills outside of your day job as possible. This can be as simple as giving more attention to your hobbies like fishing, hunting, gardening, painting, blogging, tinkering on cars, building things, sewing, cooking, etc. Whatever useful skill you’re most passionate about, learn more about it, become an expert at it, and acquire the necessary tools to start a side business with it. By doing this, you’ll reduce the dependence on your job and find much more fulfillment in life. Remember, skills are the only form of wealth that can’t be taken from you. Additionally, form clubs or partnerships with your neighbors and share your skills and tools to form a stronger community that will be resistant to whatever the systems of control throw your way.

9. Boycott - Activists have enjoyed many recent victories through boycott, most notably the rapid removal of “pink slime” meat from major supermarket chains following public outcry once they became aware of the product. It goes to show that the public still holds the power over corporations, but the masses must be educated before they’re moved to action. Not you though. Readers of this post know exactly what companies to boycott and why. Start living your principles and follow through on your knowledge. Voting with your dollars DOES work, but not if the aware crowd refuses to do it.

10. Taxes - Taxes are the most controversial of all. How do you feel knowing that money is extracted from you by force to be injected into systems around the world that create violence, rip apart cultures, and put us on a path of complete annihilation and self-destruction? This is slave-like thinking in its highest form of denial. No Constitution of any country anywhere in the world openly recognizes that it is lawful to forcefully extract money you have earned, enslaving you in perpetuity to kill others with it, upon penalty of imprisonment. It’s the final chain to be broken, and is admittedly the thickest. How can a machine be built without the funding to build it? The entire prison system we see around us has been built with our own money. Did you authorize it? Did you authorize the preemptive wars, bank bailouts, corporate subsidies, the high-tech surveillance grid that enslaves you?

These are all things you can do on your own. You don’t need to influence politicians, or ignite a mass protest, or wait for an uprising. There is no cavalry coming. You are the change you seek. Get out there and become more self-reliant and the system will lose its grip on you. If enough of us do this, the system will fall apart by its own unsustainable making. Refuse to be a slave today and unchain others by sharing this article and implementing the tips on this list.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Letter From Chuck

In 1969, publisher John Martin offered to pay Charles Bukowski $100 each and every month for the rest of his life, on one condition: that he quit his job at the post office and become a writer. 49-year-old Bukowski did just that, and in 1971 his first novel, Post Office, was published by Martin's Black Sparrow Press.

15 years later, Bukowski wrote the following letter to Martin and spoke of his joy at having escaped full time employment.

Hello John:

Thanks for the good letter. I don't think it hurts, sometimes, to remember where you came from. You know the places where I came from. Even the people who try to write about that or make films about it, they don't get it right. They call it "9 to 5." It's never 9 to 5, there's no free lunch break at those places, in fact, at many of them in order to keep your job you don't take lunch. Then there's OVERTIME and the books never seem to get the overtime right and if you complain about that, there's another sucker to take your place.

You know my old saying, "Slavery was never abolished, it was only extended to include all the colors."

And what hurts is the steadily diminishing humanity of those fighting to hold jobs they don't want but fear the alternative worse. People simply empty out. They are bodies with fearful and obedient minds. The color leaves the eye. The voice becomes ugly. And the body. The hair. The fingernails. The shoes. Everything does.

As a young man I could not believe that people could give their lives over to those conditions. As an old man, I still can't believe it. What do they do it for? Sex? TV? An automobile on monthly payments? Or children? Children who are just going to do the same things that they did?

Early on, when I was quite young and going from job to job I was foolish enough to sometimes speak to my fellow workers: "Hey, the boss can come in here at any moment and lay all of us off, just like that, don't you realize that?"

They would just look at me. I was posing something that they didn't want to enter their minds.

Now in industry, there are vast layoffs (steel mills dead, technical changes in other factors of the work place). They are layed off by the hundreds of thousands and their faces are stunned:

"I put in 35 years..."

"It ain't right..."

"I don't know what to do..."

They never pay the slaves enough so they can get free, just enough so they can stay alive and come back to work. I could see all this. Why couldn't they? I figured the park bench was just as good or being a barfly was just as good. Why not get there first before they put me there? Why wait?

I just wrote in disgust against it all, it was a relief to get the shit out of my system. And now that I'm here, a so-called professional writer, after giving the first 50 years away, I've found out that there are other disgusts beyond the system.

I remember once, working as a packer in this lighting fixture company, one of the packers suddenly said: "I'll never be free!"

One of the bosses was walking by (his name was Morrie) and he let out this delicious cackle of a laugh, enjoying the fact that this fellow was trapped for life.

So, the luck I finally had in getting out of those places, no matter how long it took, has given me a kind of joy, the jolly joy of the miracle. I now write from an old mind and an old body, long beyond the time when most men would ever think of continuing such a thing, but since I started so late I owe it to myself to continue, and when the words begin to falter and I must be helped up stairways and I can no longer tell a bluebird from a paperclip, I still feel that something in me is going to remember (no matter how far I'm gone) how I've come through the murder and the mess and the moil, to at least a generous way to die.

To not to have entirely wasted one's life seems to be a worthy accomplishment, if only for myself.

yr boy,


Oakley, Michigan

Oakley, Michigan, has 290 residents. They also have over 100 police, for some reason. Those police are also, more or less entirely anonymous. Who those police are or what they are doing is a mystery, even to the village trustees, who say they don’t even have a proper list of their own of who all these people are, though they have been assured by the police chief that many of them have never even been to Oakley, and likely never will.

There’ve been a series of lawsuits in recent years aiming to find out exactly that, leading the village to shut the police force down last month. Here’s where it gets crazy. The village council shut the police down for not having any insurance, because they’re constantly getting sued. Days later, the police showed up again, announcing they’d bought their own insurance and didn’t need the village’s permission to continue to operate. They fund themselves through secret donations from secret benefactors. Weird, right? Last week, after village council members filed a lawsuit, a judge finally ordered the police to shut down again. Days later, the council voted to finally respond to years of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and release the names of all those secret police. The list has yet to be released, and the council itself is waiting on the police chief to do that, since they don’t have any complete lists.

Today, letters showed up at the doors of the council members’ houses, on the letterhead of a high profile Detroit lawyer. The letters demanded that they rescind the decision and stop the release of the FOIA documents, insisting that the police had been promised anonymity, and claiming that ISIS, yes that ISIS, was a potential threat to the police if their names were made public. The letter went on to warn that because everyone knows ISIS is a thing, and knows ISIS would want to get hold of Oakley police, releasing their names would be a malicious act, one for which punitive damages could be awards.

Original article here.

Monday, October 20, 2014

It's Tough Being Cool

When Iggy Pop can't live off his art, what chance do the rest of us have? An article by Elizabeth Renzetti.