Episode-1324- Listener Feedback for 3-31-14 — 26 Comments

  1. I am an accountant, and have prepared many people’s taxes, and I can tell you the ideal.

    Every hardcore accountant would tell you to make sure you owe $900 when you file your taxes. Any more than that and you will pay an under payment penalty. However, reality strikes and even hardcore accountants will admit that you are not able to predict your taxes that well to avoid the underpayment penalty. So they will say to end up as perfect as you can. Aim to owe nothing and receive nothing.

    My opinion though is that it makes a nice savings plan. Most of us W-2 earners have our income taxes withheld and having a few hundred to a thousand coming to us around tax time does feel nice.

    • I like Joe’s take at $900. Knowing that Jack (and many of his listeners) are familiar with Dave Ramsey; Dave’s philosophy is to get it close to a zero-sum game for an individual or couple (likely without a business).

      When you’re not owing a large amount or getting a refund of a large amount, you get the benefit of more of your money throughout the year, but as Joe points out, don’t have any penalty. $900 sounds like a safe target for over-payment.

    • This actually touched home to us. We still are trying to figure out what the deal is, but apparently we (W-2 earners) under payed by 4300 dollars, so right now we’re looking at having to pay that.

      Needless to say this became quite the heated discussion at the house.

  2. Great show Jack, it makes the 1 hour commute fly by!

    My Conflicted Solution:
    With my group being of a Libertarian mindset (mostly), I would let the family of 4 leave our hideaway. Any restriction on members of a group being able to freely leave would edge towards a dictatorship. So with the ethical business out of the way, here are some follow up actions I would take. Of course the main concern would be loose tongues spilling the beans as to our location.

    I would make sure that the departing family was convinced that we were relocating our stronghold. I would in fact send out a few scouts to search for a location, but wouldn’t move just yet. A group is vunerable when on the move. I would also deploy a squad to set up a listening post, to ensure that we had a heads up if there were any federal movement towards our location.

    Having no military background, that’s what I’ve got! Now TSPers, rip it full of holes! Critiques make us stronger, right?

  3. Conflicted Mondays!!!

    So in the wise words of my old Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu coach when I would get stuck in a choke and yell coach what do I do?! He would warmly say, “You f***ed up a long time ago!”

    Similarly, this is a problem you need to forsee. If you don’t let them leave, they will become very bitter like a prisoner and either attempt to break out anyways in a month or two, or they will poison those around them. If you do let them leave, there are obvious security risks and you may need to move the whole group and EVEN then, you’re now on the government’s radar. Best solution is to REALLY tighten up who is allowed in in the first place and never let them see where you are situated through a wide security perimeter.

    • Excellent points!

      I hadn’t really thought in detail about HOW I’d let them leave (blindfolds, pat on the back, gift bag, etc). I don’t suppose they would be worthwhile as intelligence assets, since they are opting to return to the herd. Any thoughts?

  4. Conflicted response:

    How about this one volunteer from the family stays and one volunteer from the group goes with the family as a “visiting” uncle or aunt. Once the family has settled down in the govt. town, the visiting uncle or aunt leaves back to the main group and escorts the other family member back.

    We know where you live and you know where we live. There is no guarantee that a group of 40 would be able to safely obscure their location anyways. Trust is maintained in the exchange, since both parties know each others location.

    At this point if you aren’t behaving like humans their isn’t much hope for the human race, IMO.

  5. “The Travels of Marco Polo” was a controversial work at the time it was published and it became an embarrassment for the family. As Marco Polo was dying some of the family members wanted him to retract his statements and say it was all a fantasy. He could have done so because he actually didn’t write it. His cellmate did… and… he was a romance novelist. See the problem?

    Marco Polo dictated his book to his cellmate as they were both languishing in a Genoa prison. Marco Polo was an accomplished leader and had been given a galley war ship (a really big row boat) when he returned to Venice. Galleys are fast and maneuverable in shallow waters and their war with Genoa required skilled captains, but Marco was captured early on so he told his stories to his fellow prisoners.

    His cellmate was an accomplished author but unfortunately his accomplishments extended to writing ROMANCE NOVELS!

    It’s like coming back from a secret mission and then having “Danielle Steele” write it all up in a book for you. Even if every word was true and she did a fabulous job writing it up there is a credibility problem there. No academic would EVER quote Danielle Steele. And so it went with Marco Polo.

    On the other hand, having someone marketable writing your book made it more accessible to a wider, popular audience. Who cares if the academics don’t like it? Eh?

    So… Marco Polo had an opportunity to say it was all a lie. Just a novel, a fantasy, a good yarn. He refused. He said it was ALL TRUE and then died.

    Well… actually… it wasn’t all true but he was standing by it. It was all he KNEW to be true, but the worst mistakes come from when we “know” things that just aren’t so. Historians can point to certain aspects of Polo’s accounts as being inaccurate but given that his account is one of the few existing from that time period, they pour over it time after time trying to tease out more information.

    Regarding Columbus’s copy of the Travels of Marco Polo and his notes in the margins, I don’t know if the book still exists. I saw this fact mentioned in the article. You can read it yourselves in the references on the TSP Wiki. The link to The Catholic Encyclopedia article also mentions that Columbus had a copy and was reading it carefully.


  6. About the raised beds… my beds are made of 2×12’s arranged in 4’x8′ boxes. There’s 3′ between the beds. Problem is, the paths are currently grass and the watering makes the grass grow way too fast. Once the squash start spilling onto the grass, it becomes a problem trying to cut the grass back. This is made even more difficult because the whole group of raised beds is surrounded by deer netting (can’t weed whack the grass growing through the netting).

    I was thinking this year I should put cardboard or weed block fabric (I have plenty of both) down and then put 3 to 4 inches of wood chips on it. Would this be reasonable?

    • I would suggest a Sunday-paper-thick layer of newspaper or cardboard then mulch with wood chips. That grass won’t stand a chance.

    • My setup is similar to yours – a combination of 4×8 and 2×8 beds made from 2x12s with paths in between. When we installed the beds we put weedblock in the paths with a couple of inches of wood chip mulch on top. It works well, but does need maintenance from time to time. Grass will find whatever tiny cracks there are between the weedblock and the bed sides and if you don’t get rid of it immediately it will spread.

      The Sunday paper solution might work even better but we didn’t have access to that much newspaper and the weedblock was readily available and not terribly expensive.

  7. I feel that it doesn’t really matter what I would do.

    If the US government decided to seize everyones property and round up non conformists and was bound and determined to do so and if it could muster its full reasources against me I would be pretty screwed.

    With all the drones, satellites, U2 spyplanes, helicopters with infrared cameras, super computers, soldiers, police, FBI, NSA, CIA, miltary, ect… on the government’s side I wouldn’t realistically expect to hide from the government long and I wouldn’t hold out much hope for being able to leave the country (I am sure the borders would be locked up pretty tight).

    Hopefully I hope I would have been paying attention and left the US before it reached such a point and I still able to do so freely.

    The question to me kinda seems like asking “What would you do if you were standing on a beach and you saw a 100 ft tsunami heading towards you?”

    Answer “Die, probably. “

    • I wouldn’t worry about all that. The only way you can have that type of machine is having it well staffed and resourced. The moment guns turn inwards you have collapse. Germany and Russia had that same fate in the early 20th century. When nobody trusts anybody, you don’t have a working society.

  8. The World as it is: Where you are now
    The World as you want it to be: Where you want to go

    If you want to get where you want to go.. you have to start where you are, and then move towards where you want to be.

    Saying ‘getting there is impossible’ is ridiculous.

    It may take a long time, it may be a hard journey, but all you have to do to get there is to make sure that every step you take is in that direction. At some point.. (or your descendants) will arrive.

    • Let me add with a stateless society (which again I think is a better term than anarchism).

      There are two journeys…

      1. The journey for all individuals to get there together and for us to actually be able to live free of a state and free of theft and free being forced into someone else’s systems. This journey is very long. I may never see its end.

      2. The internal journey to a believe that the above is the ideal society. The mental switch to live YOUR OWN LIFE as close to that ideal as possible. To solve your problems without assistance from “the man”, to not use force except in defense and to not participate in forcing your will on others.

      That second journey can take years to accept but only seconds to actually make. This is why I only vote to prevent government actions or remove a law. Period. It is why my contracts will always read, “neither party will at anytime sue the other party in a court of law for any reason, non binding third party arbitration will be used until a suitable agreement is reached.”

      It is simple I simply believe that to force my will on another person that is doing me no harm and no other party any harm is WRONG, period. Doesn’t matter if my will is “good for society” or not. Forcing anyone to participate in my agenda against their will is simply wrong.

      Note I am not telling anyone how to live their life, only stating how I choose to live my own.

      • Jack, I feel for you man….I agree. Must be frustrating having to explain yourself time and again. You have become part of my family’s dinner routine… Love everything and just enrolled with Goeff Lawton after being introduced to permaculture by you… My wife and I have plans for one of your future workshops…

  9. Yo Jack
    Thanks for answering my email man. I think what I am going to do is just buy a 20 ga and just use it for small game. Then use the stevens for deer for now. In time I will pass the 20 to my son and hopefully I will be able to get the browning by then Ha

  10. Another option for raised beds is to use white oak. While kiln dried white oak can be pretty spendy, freshly cut or “green” white oak can sometimes be had at a pretty decent price. I have a woodmizer saw mill and sell quite a bit of 2″ thick material to folks making raised beds. Go on the craigslist for you area and search for woodmizer or rough cut lumber. Aromatic or Eastern Red Cedar would also work well for raised beds (and be waaay lighter and easier to work with than oak)

  11. Jack, my name is Alex. I hail from Northern Michigan on the 45th parallel. I’m a first time poster, MSB Member and listener for about a year now. Love the show.

    You mentioned in the final five minutes of the show that in order to become a physical millionaire, you would have to actually become worth much more than that. Posses more qualities than it takes to achieve it before you can achieve it. So true…and I can’t tell you how many people I’ve encountered who never realized a goal…any goal…because their target wasn’t set high enough above it.

    I’ve heard you reference setting your sights higher than the actual target goal many times. I’d like to give you a phrase I think is right up your alley.

    One of the sayings I used to use from stage in my leadership teaching days was, “Shoot for the eagle, bag the pheasant, and you’ll never eat crow.”

    That saying has always stuck with me, and it helps me by preventing me from thinking too small. Sounds like a good TSP phrase. It’s yours, man. Use it!

    Keep up the good fight!

  12. As a “tax time prepper”, we had a “gun budget” this year that we needed to cover 3 things:

    1) my lifetime IN carry permit
    2) a carry weapon for me
    3) a shotgun

    #1 was sickenly easy. (I had my permit in hand in 4 business days.

    #2 was pretty easy too. I had several guns in mind, but I settled on a Rugar SR22, and I absolutely love it. (I don’t want to hear it from the caliber snobs. :D)

    #3 was a different story though. We didn’t have much money left to spend, we wanted flexibility, and we wanted something that I could shoot with my short arms. Now, my husband’s only shot a shotgun once (12ga), and I haven’t shot one since I was a kid shooting with my family (and that was a .410.)

    First, we considered an H&R 12ga — pretty bare bones, but it was a solid gun, and the price was excellent (because the gun guy took it on trade. It was “used”, but never fired.)

    When we still seemed unsure, he showed us another gun that was used but never fired. It was a Mosberg 500 20ga “kit” that came with the usual 26″ barrel, a 24″ rifled barrel, and all 3 choke tubes. He showed us how easy it was to swap barrels, and like Jack says, it’s stupid fast.

    I think we paid $275 for the whole thing, and I was satisfied with the deal. I think we got a lot of value, enough flexibility for everything from deer down to birds, and a frame that I can actually manage.

    It’s been too muddy for us to get out to our “range” and practice with it, so I don’t know how it shoots yet. I’m happy with the purchase though.

  13. Sarah, I have been shooting my Mossberg 500 20 gauge for game birds and with a rifled barrel, slugs for deer, for a few years now. I love it and would recommend it..

  14. This guy owed my dad some money. Instead he gave him a rem 870 20 ga. My dad did not like it cause it was a 20 ga, so he gave it to me. I put it in a closet. Ten years later I pulled it out and thought “man this is really light weight”. I decided to Turkey hunt with it. I have hunted with it for the last five years now. At 6 1/2 pounds you cannot beat it! I’m going to look for a 18″ barrel with rifle sights for home defence.

  15. Conflicted Response.

    Let them go and don’t lose a lick of sleep. The government forces have their hands full enough trying to keep the roving mob of hoards fed to worry about 40 measly people who have taken care of themselves.

    They may be going after resources but they are going for much bigger fish than what this group would have. It would take too much resources to come after the group, much more than they would expect to gain.

  16. haha! Just now listened to this episode. When you started naming numbers and you got to 10MM, I said “done.” And then you said, “and you’re done.” 🙂 I’ve gotta stop thinking like Uncle Jack.