Episode-760- What Have You Done With My Country — 53 Comments

  1. Top notch show today, Jack! A cold, dark stare into the abyss but exactly what this country needs. Thanks for everything you do!

  2. You’re prediction on the direction of the Occupy Wall St. movement is very similar to mine. I’m “comforted” and disturbed that we see the same thing happening.

    Great show. I hope you’re enjoying bow season so far.

  3. WOW so many thoughts emotions. Hey I haven’t stopped getting teared / choked up by the first song now this one pass the tissue please.

    Guess the feeling I have been having “time is up” I understand much better. It still is a fine balancing act. One thing I really want to do is have our house paid off ASAP. However putting up fencing for livestock putting in wood stove we can cook heat with purchasing guns gardening canning so much of these things take $$ and of course you can go high end or low end. Building a savings account buying gold silver. So much it sure is tempting to cash in the 401k or all but empty savings or both to get the return on self sufficiency. Running numbers running numbers over and over. I dream of numbers. It’s like a juggling act where someone keeps throwing more and more balls at you. Still keep to the plan one day at a time and pay cash for everything.

    Thank you for touching on the Occupy wall street thing. I believe it is a powder keg waiting to go off. You have scared desperate people who don’t know what to do but are grasping with their victimized confused mentality and are gravitating to a movement like moths to a zapper light. They will be ripe to follow someone or react to a situation without thinking things through. Especially if they think they can blame all the troubles on one thing. Just like Hitler blamed the Jewish. Maybe overly dramatic example but I think it makes the point. Its growing so fast spreading like wild fire that tells me that people are not looking before they leap. Following blindly without question or accountability isn’t that part of the problem in the first place. Keeping up with the Jones? Just a thought. For me I will not be shopping down town while the crowd is there. Well at least the blocks that they are occupying. Just does not feel safe to be in the middle of such a large crowd of upset people.

  4. @Jack,

    Your Statement: “People had a deep sense of morality.” is it. By “it” I mean, in my view that is THE key point. Does anyone think we’ll see depressed, shabby-dressed, but still moral people standing in soup lines, looking for a day or hour of work, and doing their best?

    These beggars, who believe everyone else is responsible for their well being–EVERY ELEMENT of it, are going to make these mindless little protests (that’s my opinion) look like a picnic. I’ve no doubt that they are going to burn things and kill people.

    Not much keeps me up at night, but intellectually, knowing that we LACK any sort of fundamental SENSE of morality, I’m terrified. I do want to clarify–it isn’t about having MY sense of morality. It is that the very concept of moral sense has been ceaselessly attacked by certain elements in our society. They’ve been very successful as I see it.

    • I don’t know- I’ve also seen the “loss of morality” card played in the same way as the “won’t someone think of the children” card. Common, every-day morality back then said racism was A-okay.

  5. Ok I do have a question. Say that inflation is coming. If you know you need say a new roof (big ticket item) Debit is a cancer so you should pay cash. However you are short the cash for the roof. You have a savings account 6 mo ER fund. Say working round figures you have 30k in savings the roof will be 15k do you drain your savings by half to pay for it? With inflation as I heard it your savings/money will be worth less but the things you want to buy will cost more. So wouldn’t it be better to get high ticket items now? But then on the other hand you really need to have 60k in savings to match the 30k. Cash is king right.? I am kind of confused or maybe just slow. Could someone share some light please.

    • Roundabouts, I haven’t heard the show yet, but if it were me, the roof ain’t gonna get any cheaper, so I’d do it. This is the shelter you will have, provided they don’t tax it to the point you can’t keep it. I certainly wouldn’t borrow, unless the paperwork says dollars to be repair, and I’d bet they would say something loose in terms of repayment method. Guaranteed they will cover their butt.

      Cash will be king, but only briefly. IMHO, Food and tangible goods (barter). Make sure you have extra footwear while it is cheap.

      What is coming isn’t just inflation, it’s hyper-inflation.

      • So basically your idea is to get while the getting is good. If you need it high ticket item or low ticket item buy it at todays prices. You don’t really believe cash will be king in comparison to tangible goods. So a savings account from your point of view is going to be obsolete? Not questioning or arguing just trying to understand.

        Funny you mentioned shoes just got new boots last weekend. First pair of new shoes / boots in 7 years.

        For the record I don’t need a new roof but it was the only really high ticket item I could think of that would be a need (my mind was on a metal roof) . But I guess if your house was paid for and nobody was mandating you to get a new roof you could patch it so that structural damage did not happen. Maybe a new furnace would have been a better item.

        • On large ticket items that are real needs, I would say get them now. A real need is a roof over your head, we just put one on and both houses are paid for. If someone can’t afford a new roof and patching will work, I guess that is better than nothing. Thing is, all the money in the world does no good if you have nowhere to live.

          I do believe in savings, but not at the expense of real needs. As for footwear, battles have been lost over footwear, people lost over lack of proper clothing. Right now that is cheap, but should China revalue their currency it won’t be. Added to that China is having labor problems, people are tired of working for nothing, then again, alwasy a country willing too.

          My timing is always off, but here is something I wrote a long time ago /depression_2009_facts.html. You can see the date I wrote it on it, long time ago, but I wasn’t figuring on them propping it up this long. I’ve watched this for a long time.

  6. well said, well said, well said!! You are so right on point Jack. Thank you for staying on message and saying the hard truth. If folks listen and take action they will be better off. I am linking this one to all my friends and family in hopes they will accelerate their preparations and perhaps make changes. Your podcast has been very influential in our household. Your messages have enabled us to make informed choices that will keep us from becoming victims and be able to help others in need. ThankYou

  7. I know you’ve mentioned it before, but where can I buy the song, “What have you done with my country?”
    Great show, yet again, Jack. I really enjoy the kick-in-the-ass shows like this one.

  8. So wouldn’t it be better to get high ticket items now?

    If it were me I’d barter someone for it. There’s a place on Craigslist that you can barter for things. Maybe you can get a new roof that way.

  9. My husband and I were just assessing our preparedness plans this week, looking at our progress and also our deficiencies. We both agreed that it was time to speed up our plans based on what we are seeing happen with the economy and other factors. I hope that your message today goes viral.

  10. Sorry the song took so long, Jack. BTW, folks…it’s free at if ya want it. Feel free to spread it around too. It’s on Creative Commons license.

    This was a great show. I’m looking at my 401K and really, really don’t know what to do. It’s at about 80K, my company matches 6% (immediately vested) so it’s tough to just stop that contribution. But the damned thing lost 7% already this year, so it’s like my company contributions didn’t count anyway. I could really use that contribution to put towards my EF or vehicle (cash only, please!). Head hurts. But we have to address this stuff. Now.


  11. Well, the way I see it is 1 – Pass a law that nobody serves more than 2 years, no retirement, no pension, no more career politicians. 2 – No Lobbyist. 3 Abolish the Fed Reserve, IMF, & W.B. and tell them no repayment. Sorry Rothschild & Rockefeller. 4 Currency based on 20% gold and 80% resources and printed here. 5 Break apart Multinational Corporations. Pull out of the CNP, UN, & WTO. 6 Downsize government, especially the “military intelligence” part.

    Then prepare for war, according to history. So pull back our troops.

    As for gold, my money is on silver. TPTB own most of the gold and most gold sets in vaults. Silver however is used quicker than it is mined and refined. Silver has alwasy been used in bartering and never called up. I say that after food and barter goods are built up. You can’t eat metal.

    As for now, get out of the system. Bank at local owned Credit Unions or not at all. Lay low and keep quiet about what you buy and have. Form friendships with neighbors. Have enough cash (on hand) to pay a few light bills, etc. Get completely out of debt. Buy how to books. Get hand tools (not electric or pneumatic). If you can’t fix it you don’t need it.

    Now, I’m not sure exactly how we are to get back power. I actually don’t know of any time that power is surrendered. At some time one has to take a stand for something or live for nothing. This is not going to become Mad Max but rather laws passed one by one that will apply to certain groups and individuals while those in power will be above the law. Just as now, except it will get worse. The prisons are full of people saying they draw lines, and they’re building more prisons. I’m sure the protests are somewhat sponsored, but it beats nothing. I was almost impressed.

  12. THANK YOU for mentioning the lie about inflation benefitting people in debt. Most often, your wages do not keep up with inflation, and, if you loose your job because of the horrible economy, the debt is an even bigger weight you are chained to… Debt is slave owner of the masses.

  13. Are you going to get Fernando Aguirre on the show? He is going to do an article for Backwoods Home Magazine- Dave Duffy blogged. Also saw Jacks smiling face on his blog.

  14. Great show as always jack, you know when I was growing up I would travel south to family farm in Kentucky and Alabama and they where living the life that you talk about so often on the show, chickens, pigs, cows and ponds with lots of catfish.. Even tho I haven’t lived that way since I was a kid because I fell for the lie that the establishment sold us on pensions, social security, and all the other BS I am just finishing up on the paper work on my 10 acres and I am so excited about planting my garden, and a bunch of fruit trees and the deer in the yard or dinner on the hoof LOL.. I am just glad I woke up in time to make the changes while I still could because I feel this economy coming down and around our ears, Thanks for the show enjoy it everyday..

  15. Hey Jack, the well-known Peak Oil doomer and “collapseologist,” Dmitry Orlov, recently posted another speech on his website that revisited the basic outline of his book “Reinventing Collapse: The Soviet Experience and American Prospects.”

    As one who read the book and enjoyed the deadpan Russian humor, I his grim prognosis for the American empire to be spot-on, with a couple of exceptions: one, that the United States would likely fracture into semi-autonomous or outright separatist regional blocs (our history shows the Feds are too heavy-handed to allow that, no matter what the cost;) and two, that the American people are as a general rule too soft and stupid to adapt to the collapse of their economy without a huge die-off of unprepared people (maybe nationalism on my part, but I think we’re a little tougher and cleverer than that.) Otherwise, I think he has deconstructed our socioeconomic predicament rather well.

    Care to comment on the Orlov treatment of America’s decline?

  16. Great Show Jack! Sorry I missed you in Salt Lake. I travel a lot and missed out. We can’t help everyone, but we can for those who listen. Let’s all help Jack spread this message. Do it from a position of strength and hope, not weakness and fear. I think we need to do this by our word but more importantly, by the example we set. Taking care of our own preps now as we encourage others to do the same is better than a soapbox stood on by the politician who does nothing but speak.

  17. Jack,

    Thank you for the great show. I have been slowly encouraging my fiance to listen to your shows with me, and we sat together last night and listened to this one. She is totally on board with me as far as prepping goes, but your show really drove home to her the big economic picture for the first time. She is a corporate CPA and deals with the mess that is the tax system on a daily basis, but she didn’t have a good grasp on the way the fed worked until listening to this particular show. It has really gotten us in lockstep about the plans that we have made AND has encouraged her to take the time to read some of the articles that you suggested.

    To anyone, male or female, who has a partner who might not be fully on board or is a bit skeptical, this is THE perfect episode to plop them down in front of, turn it on and just let them listen.

    Keep up the good work, brother. We need your clear view and gift of presentation even more now than when you started.


  18. awesome show jack, tell it like it is, your so simple statement (paraphrase) the thing they fearmost is we dont play the game. Touche ! so dont play the game and pray.

  19. This was one of my favorite shows in a long time. I am now fully in the “it doesn’t matter who the next president is” camp. Jack, along with others, you have helped me realize that the only one who can do anything about my situation is ME. I will prepare for the collapse, which will come just as surely is Obama is re-elected or Perry/Cain/Romney/write-in is elected. I love the “angle and speed to the cliff” analogy; I plan to show that to my homeschoolers.

  20. One of the best episodes ever–and that’s saying something. You are spot on, Jack, that there will be a gradual and partial collapse instead of a Mad Max zombie situation. I predict you’ll be interviewing a novelist who writes of a scenario very similar to the one you are describing.

  21. Great show, my head is spinning! I do have a question regarding my 401k.
    My company does not offer a cash option which I find ridiculous. I understand the thought process behind not making further contributions because I wouldn’t be able to move the money into anything “safe”.
    However, you mentioned withdrawing the entire amount and taking the penalties now. When the market crashes, the account would take a huge hit, but are you thinking it would never come back?
    I’ll be the first to admit I’m fairly ignorant about our economy but have been learning a lot from your show. I was also a firm believer in investing for retirement in the traditional sense, but that is also changing.
    Again, my head is spinning! Just wondering your thoughts on what the market will look like when this is all said and done? Will it ever come back? Anyone’s thoughts and opinions would be welcome!

  22. How can I start doing this? Im a college student and I have to work three jobs just to pay rent! I’m a freshman and will be in college for another 4+ years. I rent a house with three housemates, I live 10 hours away from family, I barely have enough savings, how can I do this? How can I survive the fall when Im barely surviving now…

  23. Wow! I’ve been listening since show 5 and this one really hit me between the eyes. I’ve been s l o w l y building a garden and prepping, but I think I just tipped over the edge. Time to ‘soldier-up!” Thanks Jack.

  24. Sounds like you dealt with quite a few of the “AR-15 and a case of MREs in the woods” crowd at the expos. I haven’t met a whole lot of people from that demographic, but it seems like all the ones I’ve met have an attitude that their lot in life will drastically improve in the case of the SHTF because (they think) they’re prepared to thrive in that kind of environment and everyone else is too stupid/weak. It’s like they really WANT it to collapse, so they want some reinforcement on their fantasies. While we have the attitude that the things we do to prepare should give us a better life today, many of these guys seem to live in a fantasy world that places them above the masses based upon a mental image they’ve made of themselves based on shit they haven’t actually done yet.

    RE: Argentina. I think the collapse down there gets written off as a third world problem, but I’m not sure if most Americans realize how well off they were down there, with a lifestyle and standard of living very similar to the parts of Europe they’re descended from (Spain, Italy). They have all kinds of commodities and a huge agricultural business down there and at one point it was one of the richest, if not the richest (per capita) countries in the world. Although everything in Buenos Aires is faded from years of neglect, it’s an extremely decadent city. You can tell that at one point there was more money than they knew what to do with down there just by walking through almost any of the old neighborhoods.

    …and that leads me to ask, any chance of getting Ferfal on as a guest?

  25. History is filled with some pretty colorful examples of governments in direct control of money. I support it because I don’t like government at all and this would radically accelerate the self-destruct sequence of government. It’s in the Constitution? So is Article 4 Section 2 Clause 3. So what? Not that even the good parts have been followed all that well. Heck, it was violated in pretty spectacular fashion practically before the ink was dry. Moreover, most of its attempts at restricting Federal power have been interpreted into leverage for Federal power, to the point of comedic farce. See Gonzalez vs. Reich. It was an interesting experiment, and not a total failure I suppose, but I certainly no longer worship at its altar. It’s just a piece of paper. What matters it what people actually think and do.

    Do I trust my fellow American? My “brother” and “sister” American? We’re not a family. I have one brother and one sister. As for the brotherhood of man, I take it far more seriously. As Thomas Paine said, “The world is my country, all men are my brethern, and to do good is my religion.” I make no special place for another American vs. a Mexican vs. a fill in the blank. It’s nationalist tribal/gang level and a fair part of why many things in the world suck at the level they do IMO. As for the other 300+ million people who live in this place presently called the United States, I’d trust my life to some of them, but many are as dumb as a box of rocks I wouldn’t trust with a butter knife. They have the right to make their own decisions for their own lives, but deciding for other people through the “democratic” process. . . . that’s worked out well. I’m under no illusion of this changing. I’m not anti-social at all, but I am anti-democratic now more than ever. I have a tiny soft spot for it at the ideal level, but it’s almost gone. It’s loaded with perverse incentive problems. (I don’t have a problem with voting in a purely voluntary association, a nation is NOT.)

    Adminstrations do have a substantial effect on the economy. The most pernicious is regime uncertainty which is finally being more generally accepted as some ways have been developed by econometricians to index it. We’re at historic highs. Most people don’t know that consumption spending has fully recovered, what hasn’t is private investment, and it’s not for lack of funds, it’s largely because of regime uncertainty and that is in the hands of the executive and legislative branches of government, NOT bankers.

    As for “private” banks and issuance of money. It’s 100% fine . . . as long as it’s not a government granted monopoly. Even the dollar, which comes from the Boehmian Thaler, was effecitively a transnational private money that worked well for a very long time because it was superior to the local government issues. England also has some curious history of private money being substantially superior to the government’s money. As far as I’m concerned, keep the Fed if you want, I don’t care. Just revoke all protections so that a) contracts and invoices can declare payment to be made in any money or currency, I mean any and b) the USD does not have to be accepted as payment. The right of refusal is critical. Sure it’d be a little chaotic, so is making a choice on what car to buy, and any number of other consumer choices. So what? There is no inherent reason for money to be a monopoly of governments or of cartels protected by government. As a function of competition in money (real and unfettered) the monkey business the government could play with the currency would be effectively ended or at least more highly constrained. Honestly, central banks can make an effective argument that their hands are tied at optimal monetary policy because of fiscal policy they do NOT control. Also, the idea bankers around the world, who well may be a$$holes, are just wanting to throttle entire populations is bizzare for the same reason a dairy farmer doesn’t go out and just decide one day to shoot half of his herd. They want economic activity and growth. They know full well they’re in deep deep shit of things go really side ways.

    Commodity money (or baskets of currency) are not magic. What they do is take money supply out of the arbitrary control of small numbers of people and put it into the market under supply and demand. Generally, money supply should be stable and prices should be allowed to move wherever for optimal resource allocation. But now I’m getting into monetary and banking theory, so I’ll stop there.

  26. Interesting episode Jack… I could feel your inner conflict of wanting to push your message farther than you have in the past publicly (I have listened to 99% of your episodes) but trying not to fall off the slippery slope of the razor’s edge.

    You must have had some interesting experiences in Salt Lake City.

    Your instinct to watch your six at the end is a good one, you should have someone edit your show to make sure you never do cross the line.

    • @Mug when you say cross the line I have no idea what the hell you are talking about. I do my own editing and always will. Sorry dude you just aren’t making any sense.

    • Simple put, there are certain subjects that can get “people” in trouble if pressed too far and having a second ear to listen to your shows is good insurance… I have edited tens of thousands of pages and I can tell you that I do a better job editing other peoples work than I do my own.

  27. Winter IS coming, and there’s no such thing as being ‘too prepared’.

    That being said, there’s a limit to what you can do, especially not knowing when that first blizzard is going to hit (how long you have to prepare), so we need to be PRIORITIZING our preperations and then working that plan.

    Smart things I’ve done:
    – got rid of all the consumer debt and slave cards
    – food storage
    – started prosyletizing the extended family (if you’ve read anything about the ‘great’ depression.. they WILL show up on your doorstep, or send you their children to care for)
    – cut expenses to the bone
    – dumped ‘extra’ crap

    Dumb things I’ve done:
    – wasted money ‘fear buying’ things that aren’t on my prep list (I REALLY don’t need that Immersion Heater fm Old Grouch, or 2 rocket stoves)
    – dumped too much money into gold and silver (a solar array does more for me than another 100 oz of silver sitting on the shelf)
    – wasted time watching/reading articles on the internet about what’s going/is happening with the economy/commodities/jobs/inflation (after you reach the basic awareness that WINTER IS COMING.. it does absolutely no good to spend all day watching the weather channel, when what you should be doing is GETTING READY for winter.)

    my biggest ‘gotcha’/sleep reducer? Its unlikely that I can pay off my mortgage before winter comes (the plan says 7 years). I could probably manage it in 4-5 years (CC went a LOT faster than the plan said.. plan was 2 years, actual time was 5 months) but not by 2013.

  28. Not to be anal, but perhaps there is a little math discrepancy?
    Suppose you have some money in the bank – this money buys X amount of stuff. 50% inflation means that now you need 1.5 times the money you have to buy that same amount X of stuff. Effectively, your money is now worth 1.5 times less than it used to. So, 400K becomes 267K (after rounding), 30K becomes 20K, etc.
    I know it’s probably of little comfort, as it’s still bad enough.

    To slash the value of money in half requires 100% inflation. Well, prepare for the worst, hope for the best, right?..

    Thanks for the show, Jack.

  29. Jack mentioned a banker article from the early 1900’s that described the use of confidence men to shape the beliefs and attitudes of our nation. Can anyone point me to the article or the section of thesurvivalpodcast episode that discusses it. Thanks.

    • Rothbard took an absolutist line against fractional reserve banking, roughly based on the idea that money is property and therefore it was a kind of fraud since receipts (claims) exceeded inventory. Personally I think it is too far, though I get his point, the main problem with Federal Reserve + Fractional Reserve is that it’s arbitrary rather than actors working on P&L and supply and demand for REAL loanable funds. My complaint against CB isn’t that it’s somewhat private, but that it’s a protected cartel. I want total free private banking. Until and unless we get it, it’s going to be one form of disaster or another. Do you want the government 100% in charge of making shoes?

  30. Jack, I had passed the video, The Secret of Oz, around to my circle and had gotten a lot of push back saying that Still is putting words in Baum’s mouth. That Baum, himself, said that the story was never anything more than that – a story to entertain children. That he was a Republican, not a Populist Democrat and that the origin of this myth was started by a teacher in the 1960s.

    Unfortunately, as great as this documentary is, many on my list won’t give it any credibility because of this.

    • I finally watched it wow I really just never knew. As I think most people don’t. I don’t see what the big deal is if there really was no connection and it was just a story book for kids so what. The message is still there and the main ideals quotes and such can be proven since it is our history and most is recorded. Don’t think any one can doubt that the Great Depression happened. Or that we are in a world of hurt now. Some that don’t get it just never want to. Maybe they are going to hold their breath until Glinda the good witch of the north comes to give them a hug.

    • @Tom your friends should open their ears! Still himself states that Baum denied the symbolism. It is easily there to see, in any event Still never places any words in anyone’s mouth. If you are trying to put words in a man’s mouth you don’t state flatly that he denied it.

  31. After watching the Secret of Oz, I am amazed at the American version of the war of 1812. It was the Canadians with the help of the the native Indians that defeated the Americans. I grew up within 10km of Chrysler Farm in Upper Canada and know the history. The Canadians were the ones who burnt Washington, not the British.