It's officially spring, dear TDVers. A time of rebirth, a time of renewal. For those of you who live in locales infected by winter's cold, we congratulate you on enduring another brutal snow-filled, sub-zero winter, but we have to ask: What are you doing living in a place where there's winter, usually accompanied by taxes and socialism? Come south, and leave it all behind…
On to the feedback…
In response to: "Someone Needs to be Held Accountable . . . and They Need to Pay"
You imply that the folks who receive food stamps (and all the other handouts) and those that take the mortgage interest deduction fall into the same category of leeches. I am wondering what your justification of this is.
I believe we are implored to reduce the amount we send to the state in taxes. Taking advantage of tax loopholes, regardless of who they benefit, is a morally justifiable act in order to preserve some of one's wealth and keep it from the state.
The persons/co-operations that receive the money that a productive individual can't keep from the state is in fact a morally reprehensible being worthy of no such handout. The distinction is clear to me.
In response to: "Someone Needs to be Held Accountable . . . and They Need to Pay"
I'm not sure how you can characterize mortgage deductions as living at the expense of others.
That's like blaming the first victim of a mugger who has to attack a second victim because the first victim kept some of his money in his shoe – or left it at home in a safe, where the mugger failed to look.
That's not the first victim's fault.
"This includes homeowners who hump the mortgage interest deduction, 69% of which goes to those who earn $100,000 or more each year."
Oh No! There's another person out for a walk at night who hasn't brought all his cash with him! Come on, Jim. Maybe I'm missing something, and if you feel you must shame me by explaining where my thinking has gone wrong, bring it on. I have an ego about not having an ego, so it'll be easy for me to say "Thanks!"
Few want to admit the obvious – we are a part of the system. We pay government and then we take from government. What is the difference between a welfare recipient that pays taxes, however minimal, and then takes as much as he can in food stamps and the Social Security recipient who does the same? What about the corporation that takes a tax credit? And the homeowner who takes the mortgage interest deduction? These are all government transfer payments. There is no difference except in method and amounts. Qualitatively they are the same. We all pay like good subjects and then belly up to the trough to see how much we can take from the King's purse.
Of course, one could simply not pay taxes, but that means jail. Some have done it.
Or, one could pay taxes and never take any deductions or credits, and use as few government services as possible, but that just feeds the statist machine.
The argument that the money paid in taxes was never the rightful property of the government to begin with means that it was extorted, and only a fool or a coward would stay around to be forced to pay at gunpoint.
Which leaves this alternative — to expatriate, never pay income taxes again, and take nothing from government. That would be hard to do unless one left the country forever, since if in the country one would likely use the roads and other such services. And, if one moved and became a citizen of another country in which he then resided, he has a new slave card and faces same song, second verse.
Absent an anarchist community not governed by any existing sovereign, no alternative permits one to assume the noble pose.
For now, the hard truth is that we all prisoners on this planet. You get your choice of jailers.
Editor's Note: Getting a new "slave card" isn't the worst thing you could do in a world full of slave masters and continent-sized plantations and federal cages…and the plantation you were born on belongs to the richest, cruelest master.
Jim himself realized this and happily lives outside USSA borders in beautiful San Miguel del Allende, Mexico. As the US heads deeper into fasco-communist totalitarianism and Third World economic status, it will become much clearer that getting out earlier and staying out was the best of all possible options in a world of awful options.
If you can get out, consider grabbing your slice of Galt's Gulch to call home among other freedom-minded individuals. If you can't, make sure to sign up for TDV Homegrown to help you stay free and to prosper here in the US.
In response to: "I do have an abode in Mexico, but I am just a tourist and Mexico offers a 180-day tourist visa upon entry. I just have to leave every six months in order to retain my tourist status." (from Feedback Friday – March 15, 2013)
Does this actually work according to Mexican law? I would hesitate to buy a house in Mexico if this was how I was living in fear that the authorities might catch up with me.
Please let me know; it seems much easier than getting permanent residency someplace.
Living in Mexico has been a great experience, and I am always wide-eyed as I return from my travels. But, what I truly consider my art, is living the Permanent Traveler lifestyle. This is a lifestyle in which one recognizes no borders, and explores the world in all of its diverse wonder. Every country I go to has its unique cultural aspects, while at the same time – in much of the world, at least – open-minded and voluntaryist individuals pop out of every corner.
For all the fun that it is, there are some nuances to the Permanent Traveler lifestyle, which we go over in the TDV Newsletter. I am lucky in that, since I am always traveling, it’s no problem for me to return from a trek and get a new temporary slave card known as a 90-day visa to stay on the beautiful Acapulco Bay, where for much of recent history A-list celebrities from the US would go, like Frank Sinatra, until badged-drug smugglers began taking over the continent. Or, if traveling all the time isn’t your cup of tea, then you can go to the immigration office, get a ninety day extension, and leave every six months. So, it’s not rocket science, this permanent traveler way of life.
As for buying property in Mexico, there are plenty of options! I know lots of Amerikans and Kanadians that have setup shop here and started new businesses, like Italian restaurants and boutique hotels. I know that Researcher Justin O'Connell, known as The Silver Vigilante, goes down to Rosarito outside of Tijuana quite often. There he rents out a condo for $90 USD a night (it's THAT close to the border…) and has an ocean view four bedrooms and a balcony all for him and his guests. It's a good idea, of course, to obtain your Mexican title from a Mexican Notary Public at the time of your payment.
FATE OF THE PARTING SHOT
F[orget] that guy, the Parting Shot is awesome!
It's like wrapping up a piece of controversial opinion or practical matters in a nice coat of the familiar, making relevant connections to other matters and underlining the importance of parts that may be overlooked.
For me it's a huge value-add to the daily blogs. Previously it was only one article, and if the topic didn't interest me, I'd just not read it. Now, I read all of them and then read the parting shot, which at least gives me a chuckle even for a dry main article. Helps me relate to the topics that I would otherwise not read, and often times I find out I actually enjoy and learn from them.
Personally I really like the parting shot. Getting another perspective on what the main piece is saying is helpful, and I always viewed Gary's post script thoughts to be insightful and relevant to the main piece. Please don't take away the Parting Shot because a few people may not appreciate it. If they don't like it, they can simply refuse to read it. No one's forcing them to.
Yes, businesses do survive by giving the majority of what their customers want, but they die by giving in to the demands of the entitled few who believe the world should acquiesce to their every whim.
You are one of the best damn writers I've ever read. Ever. I really hope I get to meet you someday, and as far as I'm concerned you can write the opening shot, parting shot – take as many shots as you want. Keep it up, I've learned a lot from the way you express things so clearly. Many thanks.
Jack in Bali
I believe The Parting Shot has value and would like to see it retained. It's clear to me that your writing style and professed beliefs are perfect for being an editor of a newsletter that is based around the various themes of anarcho-capitialism and all it entails. No matter which direction a particular author takes his/her article, your comments at the end consistently bring the reader back to the the core theme of TDV (in my eyes anyway) of freedom of good men to do as they please without coerced intervention. Some readers of course won't need this or appreciate this, such as Jay I guess. But many more will. I love your writing style and The Parting Shot is a way for me to hear more of you.
Jay might think your comments detract from the original authors but I disagree. I believe that your comments actually enhance the each article, not unlike sifting through all the comments below each article and fishing out the "best comment" of the bunch and drawing attention to it. It also shows regular, committed involvement from the Editor, which should be an important factor to all of TDV's readers…..at least it should be. Perhaps other publications do something similar but I've yet to encounter one, this uniqueness is another good reason to continue The Parting Shot.
Take it easy, man….
Live of course, I enjoy Gary's 'unique', sarcastic and wonderfully caustic take on life.
I am a HUGE fan of "The Parting Shot." It is something I actually look forward to, as a reflection on, or continuation of, the subject being addressed. Please do not eliminate it!
(plus, Gary, you are a fantastic writer, and always on point IMO)
Keep the Parting Shot!!
First, thank you for all the kind and enthusiastic responses. There were roughly a couple dozen more like this and five votes to kill the Shot. The exact percentage was a little over 80% to let it live. A clear majority.
But there were a couple of nuanced responses. Like this one…
I'm on the fence. I like the way you think and write. Seeing you in every mailing though is kind of too much of a good thing. I'm compelled to read you every time because you've got some good stuff to say, but it can make getting through the mail a chore sometimes. Try doing The Parting Shot part-time?
I hear you, Mark. Four out of five people love the Shot and want to see it. But there's no need to see it every single day. In fact, sharp-eyed readers might have noticed that the Shot is nowhere close to daily. In fact, it hasn't appeared at all this week!
If I have something to say to add to the conversation (and if the article wasn't too long already), I'll say it. If I have an anecdote that I think you'll appreciate, I'll tell it. And of course I can always be found hanging aroud here on Feedback Friday as well as my regular Sunday column, "Notes from the NEW Underground Railroad".
Those of you who would like to see my fuller length treatments of strategies to survive in the growing police state we call America, just click here to sign up for TDV Homegrown. Along with TDV researcher, Justin O'Connell and cast of other contributors (like Dear Slavey), I'll endeavor to keep Homegrown readers one step ahead so that they stay free and get richer right here in the Homeland.