Poster: Hank @ Tue Mar 31, 2009 6:24 am
One of the principal advantages of the current recession is that people don't have enough money to participate fully in the worldwide slave culture and survive at the same time. That is, it's hard to afford a Range Rover at $800 per month, gym membership, endless Doritos, Tyson Chicken Nuggets, and Pop Tarts, new Polo brand sweaters, golf fees, and your 'Second Life' subscription along with mortgage / rent when you have no job or have moved from VP to Gap salesperson. Folks are just having to cut back, and like it or not, that means buying less stuff and doing more for yourself.
It seems like nobody wants to think about being a slave, but sometimes a boot to the head is needed to motivate the slothful, and unemployment is a darn fine boot. When a person is suddenly avulsed from the cash teat to which they'd become so well used, there's a period of initial shock followed by a gradual rediscovery of important things, namely, that the exceedingly scarce time that humans are permitted to live has real value and that cash-for-time is a situation of rapidly diminishing marginal returns, and that most of the things we've been paying others to do can be done ourselves. These realizations are the first glimmers of reality that break through the dingy stratus clouds of the slave mindset.
What is slavery? There is a short definition : Slavery is the condition of being compelled to do as you do not please.
Modern slavery as we understand it, though, is really about reliance on and servitude to institutions to whom we cede power in exchange for a perception of convenience. There are three major aspects by which we visibly participate in our own slavery :
1) Reliance on cash flow for daily survival. This is winkingly known as "living paycheck to paycheck." It is a grave condition which means that you must serve the will of people with money so that they will give you some of that money in order that you can buy goods and services you need to live at your chosen standard of living. It means that you are addicted to cash and cannot do as you see fit with your scarce time. This condition is dire and nearly universal in America and Europe.
2) Reliance on a constant inflow of imported, slave-made consumer goods offered as palliatives at very low prices by individuals having an interest in keeping you locked into the above condition. These goods are plentiful, of high quality, and have low price tags. They are offered to you as little rewards that you can give yourself for sacrificing your life to cash flow, for a dollar cost that represents whatever is left after you've purchased your monthly survival. The price is kept very low so that you can and will buy these things frequently, and the quality of these little rewards is very high for the price. These items are manufactured in conditions of literal slavery, in foreign countries. If a good is produced in China, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia, or a similar labor market, it is very likely to be made by slaves. On the issue of how these goods can be of such high quality at such low price, Jeff Cooper said : "Quality control in a slave society can be anything the commissars decide, and, of course, slave labor is a lot cheaper."
3) Reliance on foods that are expensive, imported and processed, and insufficiently nutritive. The institution of the current food supply chain, wherein we are at the mercy of those who process and deliver our food from who-in-the-hoot-knows-where and then sell it to us, is the most fundamental mechanism of control by which we are yoked. These foods are poison to our physical frames and serve to keep us up in chains.
So how does one start to break out of this terrible prison? Well, if you've lost your job, the hardest part has been done for you. For the rest of us, there are three basic steps we can take to combat the three most obvious barbs of slavery as shown above :
1) Use your time to learn new and useful skills. I'm not talking about how to win at 'Halo' here. This means learning how to do substantial things for yourself, such as changing your oil, building a chair, or writing a computer program. Don't sell every minute of your time for money and forgo self-education as a result -- this is the biggest trick of those who want to keep you in the slave-house, as it's how your reliance on institutions is assured. Everything you can't do yourself is something you have to pay them to do for you. Your skills and education are the only assets you have that can't be taken from you until you die, and you can acquire a nearly unlimited range and quantity of them. Spend only what you need to; guard your time against encroachment; save leftover cash to buy education and your freedom.
2) Do not buy new goods made by slaves -- this essentially means no goods made in 'developing countries'. Read the label! If you decide to take this seriously, you will find yourself buying very little, because all the pacifier goods are slave-made! This is true. If you need something so bad that you can't live without buying it, buy it used so that you save big and don't directly participate in the demand for slave products. New non-slave (USA, Canada, caveat emptor 'Fair Trade' goods and those from Western Europe) goods are very expensive, so you'll buy with caution. This will break you of the habit of 'retail therapy' which is used to keep you distracted from the gravity and depravity of your condition. This rule can save you vast -- vast -- sums of money that you can use to acquire new skills and break out of your slave condition.
3) Grow your own food, and anything you cannot produce, buy in the most basic poison-free form available and process it yourself. For example, you can grow plenty of vegetables on your patio or in your yard. However, you might not be able to produce sustaining amounts of staples like grain for bread, beans, hamburgers, etc. Buy (organic) whole grains and / or flour and make your own bread; buy dried beans and cook your own chili; buy organic beef and make your own burgers. Example : I eat a lot of beans as a staple food. A can of organic beans costs about $1.50 at the store, but if I buy them dry and cook them myself, the cost is about one-tenth that. The cost of bread is at least halved by making it yourself. [note : you can't really trust the 'organic' designation, as it's really just another control mechanism and a half-lie -- this is why you should try to grow everything that you can] This step can save you gargantuan amounts of money and is the most fundamental thing you can start doing right now to escape your slave condition. Apart from shelter, the most basic need you have is food. When you take control over your own food supply, you have taken back the ownership of yourself in a very real way. Remember : skills that you acquire doing this are real assets that can't be confiscated, so learning how to do these things is not a waste of time.
These three steps are simple and are not very hard to do in fact. After a month of doing them, you will be much richer and probably healthier. You will very likely find that you don't miss the things you've "given up" (Whoppers, new electronic toys, T-shirts made in Bangladesh, etc). Any earnings you forgo by guarding your time and focusing on learning new skills will be more than made up for by your cost savings on goods and food, and of course will be made up even more visibly as you deploy your new skills later. Most importantly, you will have gotten a taste of liberty and seen the signpost that points down the road to self-reliance. All you have to do then is keep walking.
Stay tuned for upcoming articles on Poison-Free eating and more urban agronomy!
STOP BEING A SLAVE
(slave photo from Green Options)