Everything You Know About Money Is Wrong

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 We Can’t Fix What We Don’t Understand

Bloomberg notes this week that the conventional theory of why money was created is wrong:

There are, broadly speaking, two accounts of the origin and history of money. One is elegant, intuitive and taught in many introductory economics textbooks. The other is true.

The financial economist Charles Goodhart, a former member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, laid out the two views in a 1998 paper, “The Two Concepts of Money: Implications for the Analysis of Optimal Currency Areas.”

The first view, the “M View,” is named after the Austrian 19th century economist and historian Karl Menger, whose 1882 essay “On the Origins of Money” is the canonical statement of an argument that goes back to Aristotle:

As subsistence farming gives way to more complex economies, individuals want to trade. Simple barter (eight bushels of wheat for one barrel of wine) quickly becomes inefficient, because a buyer’s desires won’t always match up with a seller’s inventory. If a merchant comes through the village with wine and all a farmer has to offer is wheat, but the merchant wants nuts, there’s no trade and both parties walk away unfulfilled. Or the farmer has to incur the costs of finding another merchant who will exchange wheat for nuts and then hope that the first merchant hasn’t moved on to the next village.

But if the merchant and the farmer can exchange some other medium, then the trade can happen. This medium of exchange has to be what Menger calls “saleable,” meaning that it’s easily portable, doesn’t spoil over time and can be divided. Denominated coins work, shells and beads also fit the bill. So do cigarettes in POW camps and jails and Tide laundry detergent for drug dealers. This process, Menger argues, happens without the intervention of the state: “Money has not been generated by law. In its origin it is a social, and not a state institution.” [Menger’s view is the commonly-accepted theory of  money.]

Goodhart points out, however, that Menger is just wrong about the actual history of physical money, especially metal coins. Goodhart writes that coins don’t follow Menger’s account at all. Normal people, after all, can’t judge the quality of hunks of metal the same way they can count cigarettes or shells. They can, however, count coins. Coins need to be minted, and governments are the ideal body to do so. Precious metals that become coins are, well, precious, and stores of them need to be protected from theft. Also, a private mint will always have the incentive to say its coins contain more high-value stuff than they actually do. Governments can last a long time and make multi-generational commitments to their currencies that your local blacksmith can’t.

But why oversee money creation in the first place? This brings us to the second theory of money, which Goodhart calls the “C View,” standing for “cartalist” (chartalist is a more common spelling). To simplify radically, it starts with the idea that states minted money to pay soldiers, and then made that money the only acceptable currency for paying taxes. With a standard currency, tax assessment and collection became easier, and the state could make a small profit from seiginorage.

The state-coin connection has far more historical support than Menger’s organic account. As Goodheart points out, strong, state-building rulers (Charlemagne, Edward I of England) tend to be currency innovators, and he could have easily added Franklin D. Roosevelt’s taking the U.S. off the gold standard in 1933 or Abraham Lincoln financing the Civil War with newly issued greenbacks. The inverse is true too: When states collapse, they usually take their currencies with them. When Japan stopped minting coins in 958, the economy reverted to barter within 50 years.  When the Roman Empire collapsed in Western Europe, money creation splintered along new political borders.

If money came about independent of states, as according to the M View, one would think it would outlast transient political structures. Historically, however, this tends not to be the case, a strong argument in favor of the C View.

Anthropologist David Graeber – who has extensively studied the history of money and debt – agrees:

There’s a standard story we’re all taught, a ‘once upon a time’ — it’s a fairy tale.

***

Rather than the standard story – first there’s barter, then money, then finally credit comes out of that – if anything its precisely the other way around. Credit and debt comes first, then coinage emerges thousands of years later and then, when you do find “I’ll give you twenty chickens for that cow” type of barter systems, it’s usually when there used to be cash markets, but for some reason – as in Russia, for example, in 1998 – the currency collapses or disappears.

***

Taxes are also key to creating the first markets that operate on cash, since coinage seems to be invented or at least widely popularized to pay soldiers – more or less simultaneously in China, India, and the Mediterranean, where governments find the easiest way to provision the troops is to issue them standard-issue bits of gold or silver and then demand everyone else in the kingdom give them one of those coins back again. Thus we find that the language of debt and the language of morality start to merge.

***

How did this happen? Well, remember I said that the big question in the origins of money is how a sense of obligation – an ‘I owe you one’ – turns into something that can be precisely quantified? Well, the answer seems to be: when there is a potential for violence. If you give someone a pig and they give you a few chickens back you might think they’re a cheapskate, and mock them, but you’re unlikely to come up with a mathematical formula for exactly how cheap you think they are. If someone pokes out your eye in a fight, or kills your brother, that’s when you start saying, “traditional compensation is exactly twenty-seven heifers of the finest quality and if they’re not of the finest quality, this means war!”

Money, in the sense of exact equivalents, seems to emerge from situations like that, but also, war and plunder, the disposal of loot, slavery. In early Medieval Ireland, for example, slave-girls were the highest denomination of currency. And you could specify the exact value of everything in a typical house even though very few of those items were available for sale anywhere because they were used to pay fines or damages if someone broke them. But once you understand that taxes and money largely begin with war it becomes easier to see what really happened.

Graeber provides an example:

We tend to forget that in, say, the Middle Ages, from France to China, … money was … whatever the king was willing to accept in taxes.

Graeber also notes that the first word for “freedom” in any language is the word for “debt-freedom”, and that much of the language of the great religious movements revolved around forgiveness of debts.  And the founders of the Christian and Jewish religions focused on the importance of debt jubilees.

In addition, most Americans don’t realize that our current money system does not serve the public good, but instead continuously sucks the prosperity and vitality out of our economy.  As Henry Ford noted:

It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.

Some claim that public banking is the answer. Others look to gold or Bitcoin as a saner alternative to fiat currencies.

As we noted in 2011, maybe we should get beyond all systems which keep track of exactly to the penny who owes what to whom … in the manner required for warfare and slavery:

Graeber hints at one possibility [for a way out of the money-debt trap]:

[French anthropologist Marcel Mauss] was one of the first anthropologists to ask: well, all right, if not barter, then what? What do people who don’t use money actually do when things change hands? Anthropologists had documented an endless variety of such economic systems, but hadn’t really worked out common principles. What Mauss noticed was that in almost all of them, everyone pretended as if they were just giving one another gifts and then they fervently denied they expected anything back. But in actual fact everyone understood there were implicit rules and recipients would feel compelled to make some sort of return.

What fascinated Mauss was that this seemed to be universally true, even today. If I take a free-market economist out to dinner he’ll feel like he should return the favor and take me out to dinner later. He might even think that he is something of chump if he doesn’t and this even if his theory tells him he just got something for nothing and should be happy about it. Why is that? What is this force that compels me to want to return a gift?

This is an important argument, and it shows there is always a certain morality underlying what we call economic life.

In other words, in communities or webs of human interaction which are small enough that people can remember who gave what, we might be able to set up alternative systems of money and credit so we can largely “opt out” of the status quo systems of money and debt measurement.

I’m not arguing for becoming Luddites and living in mud huts (but that is fine, if you wish to do so). Nor am I suggesting that we all have to become selfless saints who give away all of their possessions without any reasonable expectation of something in return.

I am arguing that it might be possible to empower ourselves – and create our own systems for keeping track on a local or people-centered basis, and create our own vibrant economies using the resources we have – by moving away from the national and global systems dominated by the biggest banks and oligarchs, and towards a system where we “spend” resources and goodwill into our local communities in a way in which trust is built from the ground-up, and the energy of trade and commerce can be re-started. [Trust is – after all – the basis for all prosperous economies.]

Postscript: Mainstream economists will argue that we need a universal, fungible type of money in order to trade on a global basis. But because currencies are now unpegged from anything in the real world and are traded on the currency markets, their values fluctuate wildly in the modern world. In other words, one of the essential characteristics for money – that they represent a universal, fixed yardstick – has disappeared. And fiat currencies have a very short lifespan. So how valuable are they, really, for anyone but forex speculators?

Until we learn what money, credit and debt really are, we will remain victims … getting poorer and poorer.

Postscript: The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all evil.  On the other hand, the father of modern economics (Adam Smith), Ronald Reagan, economist Milton Friedman, Wall Street titan Ivan Boesky and students who take economics classes all say that greed is good.

Both are naive.

Money and currency are good to the extent that they help create abundance for ourselves and our communities.  They are bad to the extent that they are used to promote warfare and slavery, and that they suck prosperity out of the system.

Big Banks Are Not Really In the Banking Business

Everyone thinks of banks as holding our deposits safe, and extending loans based upon the amount of deposits they hold in their vaults.

This is no longer true.

The big banks currently do very little traditional banking. Most of their business is from financialspeculation (which, sadly, metastasizes into manipulation and criminal behavior).

For example, less than 10% of Bank of America’s assets come from traditional banking deposits.

Time Magazine gave some historical perspective in 1993:

What would happen to the U.S. economy if all its commercial banks suddenly closed their doors? Throughout most of American history, the answer would have been a disaster of epic proportions, akin to the Depression wrought by the chain-reaction bank failures in the early 1930s. But [today] the startling answer is that a shutdown by banks might be far from cataclysmic.

***

Who really needs banks these days? Hardly anyone, it turns out. While banks once dominated business lending, today nearly 80% of all such loans come from nonbank lenders like life insurers, brokerage firms and finance companies. Banks used to be the only source of money in town. Now businesses and individuals can write checks on their insurance companies, get a loan from a pension fund, and deposit paychecks in a money-market account with a brokerage firm. “It is possible for banks to die and still have a vibrant economy,” says Edward Furash, a Washington banks consultant.

Indeed, even though the taxpayers have thrown trillions of dollars at the “too big to fail” banks, they largely stopped loaning to Main street … and it was only the smaller banks that kept making loans.

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DARPA Is Developing an Implant that Can Read Brain Signals in Real-Time

Image via Flickr

The latest project from the futurists at DARPA takes a detour from the agency’s typical dabblings in autonomous robots and artificially intelligent computers to focus on the health of actual humans. The agency announced its latest moonshot initiative today, a $70 million project to develop a new implantable electronic device that can be used to treat some of the mental disorders plaguing the US military.

The ambitious goal is to create a medical device within five years that can be implanted in the skull to monitor, analyze, and respond to real-time information on the brain, somewhat like a pacemaker for grey matter. That new level of insight into the human mind could lead to more effective treatments for neurological and psychiatric disorders, researchers hope.

The Defense Department has good reason to devote such a large chunk of change to advancing neuroscience. Today, the leading cause of soldiers’ hospital stays isn’t physical injuries, but mental conditions like post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injury, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse, DARPA said in its announcement.

The agency is turning to technology to better understand these problems. The project is part of the White House’s BRAIN initiative to research the mind to uncover new treatments for mental health. President Obama’s budgeted $100 million for the first year, half of which will go to DARPA.

DARPA is hoping to either improve on current “deep brain stimulation” technology, or develop new ways to do it better. Doctors already use deep brain stimulation to treat certain neurological disorders like Parkinson’s disease—some 100,000 Parkinson’s patients in the world have chips in their brain today, the agency said. It works by sending electrical impulses to the affected areas of the brain to regulate abnormal impulses caused by the disorder. Researchers are also testing electronic chips to treat a number of other mental conditions, like depression, OCD, Tourette’s, and epilepsy.

But the current technology is limited. The chips can’t monitor how effective the stimulation treatment is; they can’t “read” brain signals. That’s a hurdle for treating complex conditions like depression that’s don’t have obvious biological indicators. And while neurotechnology is advancing quickly, the human mind is still shrouded in mystery. Researchers today rely on a fuzzy understanding of the brain and trial-and-error approach to treat disease. “We’re talking about a whole systems approach to the brain, not a disease-by-disease examination of a single process or a subset of processes,” DARPA program manager Justin Sanchez said in the announcement.

Pulling it off will require generating complex models of the brain systems. Luckily, scientists from the government and private companies have been on a tear in recent years trying to better understand the inner-workings of the mind. The White House’s BRAIN initiative is just one of the big-budget, large-scale attempts to map the brain currently underway, and the military has invested heavily in a wide range of neurotechnology.

Researchers are also collecting unprecedented real-time information on the brain from EEG technology that essentially read the mind and transmit that data back to a computer for analysis. These “brain hacking” headpieces are becoming more advanced, increasingly commercialized and affordable, and are starting to be used to help treat mental conditions, namely ADHD.

DARPA’s collaborating with the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation on the project, called Systems-Based Neurotechnology and Understanding for the Treatment of Neuropsychological Illnesses.

Russell Brand: The Spiritual Revolution

Russell Brand talks to Alex Jones about humanity’s spiritual revolution and the source of the elite’s power.

Russell Brand: Radical Prophet, Mystical Force of Nature

>by David DeGraw

Russell Brand, that controversial, formerly drug and sex-addicted, adolescent funny man, who was spawned from UK “reality” television, became a movie star with roles in mindless comedy blockbuster hits and was briefly married to a pop princess, has evolved into one of the world’s most important radicals.

In this modern age, where the spectacle of celebrity is used to distract, bamboozle and pacify the masses, where ignorance is placed on a pedestal and repetitiously rammed down our throat, raping our young minds, enslaving us in the all-consuming cult of consumerism and a never-ending narcissistic rat race to the bottom, Russell Brand has emerged as an enlightening force.

Behold, Russell Brand: comedian / trendsetter / thought-leader / revolutionary / spiritual guru. The more you pay attention to him, the more you realize that he is a madly brilliant critical thinker, a prophet of sorts, a spiritual sage, a shaman of radical positivity. Russell knows how to dance with fame, as he sprinkles subversive mind-opening truths like pixie dust.

He is currently on a whirlwind worldwide comedy tour, fittingly called Messiah Complex. His performance weaves through famed radical icons such as Malcolm X, Che Guevara, Gandhi and Jesus. Yes, Jesus the radical, the man who cared about the poor and chased the moneychangers from the temple. Russell makes you yearn for a modern day messiah who can chase Wall Street from our lives and deliver us to freedom. Alas, as Che said, only you can liberate yourself. There is much truth to Che’s words. However, as Brand makes clear, we are bred to follow false idols and live in a “cult of the hero.” Famed social psychologist Jacques Ellul summed it up:

“The cult of the hero is the absolutely necessary complement of the massification of society…. This exaltation of the hero proves that one lives in a mass society. The individual who is prevented by circumstances from becoming a real person, who can no longer express himself through personal thought or action, who finds his aspirations frustrated, projects onto the hero all he would wish to be. He lives vicariously and experiences the… exploits of the god with whom he lives in spiritual symbiosis.”

Russell Brand Messiah Complex tourKnowing that we have this ingrained bias built into our cultural programming, it seems clear that the propaganda-addicted masses need icons, now more than ever, who can help expand their consciousness and inspire them to new ways of thinking and living. As Brand jokes about being the second-coming (in bed, not in the biblical sense), you can’t help but think to yourself; is Brand evolving into one of these very icons he pokes fun of? It may seem like a stretch, and it is extremely high praise to even playfully ponder such a question. That being said, I see Brand as a seriously liberating force with limitless potential as a counter-cultural radical iconoclast.

As he masks his message in an intense, quick-witted, relentless rapid-fire torrent of self-deprecating humor, it subversively slips through your habitual thoughts and hits home in a profound way. Amidst all the laughs, I decipher and sum up his message this way: we are all distracted, dumbed-down and mentally conditioned by mainstream media, while corrupt politicians have been paid off by a small group of shortsighted, greed-addicted billionaires and multinational corporations, who are consolidating wealth and resources on an unprecedented scale, and destroying our future in the process.

This may be commonsense to anyone paying attention to the true state of the world, but for the overwhelming majority, to the propagandized masses, he delivers this eye-opening message in bedazzling fashion, with humorous, disheveled sex appeal, which makes him irresistible to the people who need to hear this message the most. The talented trick of it all, he does it all in a very compassionate, fun-loving, and, most importantly, non-preachy style. As Oscar Wilde once said, “If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.” Brand lives by that quote, he even has it tattooed on his arm.

Above all, Brand’s spiritual vibe comes through, radiating love and empathy for humanity as a whole. That may make the cynical among us roll their tired eyes, but he pulls it off in a genuine way. Celebrity, sex, spirituality and humor are all highly infectious. These days, they are most often used to manipulate, deceive, divide and disempower us. Brand is now flipping that script, he is using them to empower, enlighten and unite us. His hilarious and controversial bad boy attics have slipped him into mainstream consciousness, and his ever-growing celeb status ensures he will stay there for a while to come. He’s a Trojan horse inside the gates of mainstream media. The soldiers are only just beginning to sneak out, freedom seems within reach.

How many celebrities do you know who can turn a glitzy GQ swank-fest gala into an easily understood rant on the corrupting influence of money in politics? The GQ controversy was just one of several recent bursts of radical enlightenment to come from Brand. (See him school MSNBC “news” anchors here and watch this compilation of clips here.)

Russell is the editor the latest copy of the New Statesman. His theme is Revolution of Consciousness; the magazine features the work of some of the world’s most radical thinkers. In a new must see BBC interview discussing the release of the magazine, Russell is in affable battle mode matching wits and mental jabs with veteran “newsman” Jeremy Paxman. (Watch the video to the right to see one of the most radical interviews you will ever see on mainstream television.)

He opens the magazine with a manifesto of sorts, featuring gems such as these:

“Like most people I regard politicians as frauds and liars and the current political system as nothing more than a bureaucratic means for furthering the augmentation and advantages of economic elites….~

I don’t vote because to me it seems like a tacit act of compliance; I know, I know my grandparents fought in two world wars (and one World Cup) so that I’d have the right to vote. Well, they were conned. As far as I’m concerned there is nothing to vote for. I feel it is a far more potent political act to completely renounce the current paradigm than to participate in even the most trivial and tokenistic manner, by obediently X-ing a little box.~

Total revolution of consciousness and our entire social, political and economic system is what interests me, but that’s not on the ballot….

Apathy is a rational reaction to a system that no longer represents, hears or addresses the vast majority of people. A system that is apathetic, in fact, to the needs of the people it was designed to serve. To me a potent and triumphant leftist movement, aside from the glorious Occupy rumble, is a faint, idealistic whisper from sepia rebels….~

Along with the absolute, all-encompassing total corruption of our political agencies by big business, this apathy is the biggest obstacle to change…. We have succumbed to an ideology that is 100 per cent corrupt and must be overthrown. The maintenance of this system depends on our belief that “there’s nothing we can do”…~

We British seem to be a bit embarrassed about revolution, like the passion is uncouth or that some tea might get spilled on our cuffs in the uprising. That revolution is a bit French or worse still American. Well, the alternative is extinction so now might be a good time to re-evaluate. The apathy is in fact a transmission problem, when we are given the correct information in an engaging fashion, we will stir….~

The revolution of consciousness is a decision, decisions take a moment. In my mind the revolution has already begun.”

In my mind, Russell hits the nail on the head when he speaks of a revolution of consciousness in political and spiritual tones with an emphasis on propaganda. To create the revolution that we need to get us off of this disastrous path and out of this obsolete paradigm, people must become aware of the processes that condition our consciousness and contract our awareness. Even the most independent minded people vastly underestimate how propagandized we all are. Just because we have repetitiously been told that we are free, doesn’t mean that we are. We live in a mental prison that we have all been bred into.

As the old line goes, you must first see the walls before you can free yourself. In this regard, Russell is a gladiator of the mind, exposing walls that the propagandized masses have rarely seen. Perhaps his dedication to meditation and yoga has tapped him into a truly divine realm. Just get within his presence, frequencywavelength and watch him flow ~ he radiates a contagious, shockingly uplifting energy ~ and you will feel your own frequency and vibration elevate you into another dimension.

Indeed, the revolution of consciousness has already begun. Enough with the reading, let’s see the mystical maestro work his magic…

~

News Anchor Completely Loses It For The Best Possible Reason

Well folks, here is somebody else speaking up about the truth of our great country. Please listen, pause and think about what he is saying.

How do we get money out of politics?

Those of you who followed the Occupy Movement will remember one predominant theme that emerged was this idea that we need to get money out of political process. This meme was one that resonated with a lot of people. It was thought that, if we could stop Wall Street from buying our politicians, they might reform themselves and become better representatives of WE THE PEOPLE.

When you think deeply about it, you begin to realize the problem is more fundamental. While it is true that K street lobbies have undue influence in our political system, that is not the root of the problem. The large pools of Capital that sit above government is the root of the problem. With the rise of Bitcoin, people like myself have begun to ask new questions and formulate new solutions. Perhaps we need government, but do we need government issued money?

Talking about removing the money from the political process is one thing, but to separate government from money altogether is something quite different–indeed, it is revolutionary. The separation of church and State is a rather new idea in human history, and most people agree it was a step forward. With the rise of financial instruments that are both autonomous and anonymous, the question must be asked: Are we now ready for the separation of money from the State?

The separation of church and State was very controversial but it brought greater pluralism for all. America had a big role to play in that evolutionary process. After the Magna Carta was signed, men of the Enlightenment were no longer content to be ruled by Kings. Today the old oligarchs that once sat behind the king’s throne are still asserting themselves by appointing bankers into political positions once held by elected officials. What we see today is neo-feudalism where the kings have been replaced by few powerful families, each with large pools of capital. They control the political process because the control the money.

What I’m describing is called “the New World Order” and those invested in this corrupt system are pushing a Globalist agenda that forces working people the world over to comply and submit to its all-powerful will without regard to their individual rights. Yes, people complain about this open conspiracy, but they are at a loss to know what can be done about it. Perhaps the answer is a simple one: stop using State issued money.

If people the world over were to adopt various forms of crypto-currency, this would seriously reduce the power of the Super-State to control them and in time it would also render the oligarchy powerless to control the state. Then, and only then, would free people have a chance to reclaim their government and restore a Constitutional Republic that is both accountable and representative of their the best interests.

Bizarre “Freemason” Rant on House Floor

A stenographer staged a bizarre performance on the House floor near the end of the debt ceiling vote last night, ranting about Freemasons before she was quickly dragged away by security guards.

Moments before House members passed a bill to raise the debt ceiling, a woman later identified as stenographer Diane Reidy approached the microphone at the Speaker’s Lobby in a trance-like state and began to shout.

“He will not be mocked, don’t touch me, he will not be mocked,” Reidy ranted, adding, “The greatest deception here is this is not one nation under God, it never was.”

Officials begin to remove Reidy as she screamed, “It never was, had it been, it would not have been….the Constitution would not have been written by Freemasons, they go against God, you cannot serve two masters.”

“Praise be God, Lord Jesus Christ,” she added.

Reidy also reportedly said “A House divided cannot stand — you are all sons of the devil!”

According to Rep. Joaquin Castro, the woman “had a crazed look” on her face. “It was very disturbing for the members of Congress,” he said.

“I had passed her obviously all the time on the House floor, and she smiled a few times, she seemed nice, and according to other members who have been around longer, she seemed nice,” Castro told reporters.

According to the Washington Post, House floor staff were “visibly shaken” by the incident and police are currently investigating the matter.

“I think there’s a lot of sympathy, because something clearly happened there,” said Rep. Gerry Connolly.

What makes the incident even more strange is that Reidy is not someone who showed up on the job recently, she has been working as an official stenographer with the Office of the Clerk for over 20 years.

Shutdown Solution: Opt Out of Tyranny

by David Degraw
http://daviddegraw.org/shutdown-solution-opt-out-of-tyranny/

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It’s Time For A Do-It-Ourselves Revolution

“All countries are basically social arrangements, accommodations to changing circumstances.
No matter how permanent and even sacred they may seem at any one time,
in fact they are all artificial and temporary.”

– Strobe Talbott

How much longer are we going to protest and post online reports, rants, videos and launch campaigns that will hopefully raise awareness on issue after issue, problem after problem, as the situation gets worse? How much longer are we going to just keep crying about the need for change and pleading with puppet politicians in hopes that they will care about anything other than what their top campaign contributors think? At what point are we going to start acting like free and responsible citizens and stop acting like disgruntled servants waiting for our masters to save us and do the right thing?

C’mon people, let’s grow up and get real! The reformers have had their chance. For decades reformers have desperately clung to the fleeting belief that they can change the system from within. Well, after the latest government shutdown fiasco, the jury is now clearly in! We cannot allow the continued delusion and denial of reformers to prolong our suffering any longer. While reformers collect their paychecks, we are dying a slow painful death.

How many more crises will we endure before we truly act upon the fact that the government is working against our interests? How much more proof do we need? The current TWO-party oligarchy is a parasite sucking the life and wealth out of us. An organized criminal class has taken control of our government and rigged the game against us. It’s an undeniable truth. Even the propagandized masses realize this now. Poll after poll shows all-time record low approval ratings for this government. The main point of the Declaration of Independence is now more relevant than it was back in 1776; the government no longer has the consent of the governed.

As Thomas Jefferson wisely said many generations ago, “Every generation needs a new revolution.” The only reason why we haven’t evolved the government or solved any of the major problems we are confronted by is because this antiqued governmental system is now wholly corrupt! Our future has been sold to the highest bidder and is now held hostage by “special interests,” by a TWO-party oligarchy. People no longer trust the government or the corporate puppets that run it. The majority has lost faith in our political, economic and legal system.

We are toiling in a country where 50% of the population is either in poverty or “near poverty,” and 75% lives paycheck to paycheck. Meanwhile, US millionaires have $50 TRILLION in wealth. The rich have never been richer, while we have an all-time record number of people in poverty and prison. There is no need for us to be struggling in such hardship. There is more than enough wealth to fix our problems and evolve society for the benefit of all. For all the problems we face, there are effective solutions. Solutions that are being held back due to corruption. How much longer are we going to keep banging our heads against this same old wall? THIS INSANITY HAS TO STOP!!

Banana Republic “Elections”

The electoral process is now completely rigged. The Supreme Court has become supremely corrupt. They consistently side with corruption, removing every last restraint on the corrupting influence of money in politics. You now need millions of dollars to even be considered for Congress. On top of that, the mainstream media will only give airtime to status quo supporting, paid off politicians. Both corrupt parties control the televised debates, so you can’t even get into the debate without bowing to the oligarchy. To sum it up, without millions of dollars, the endorsement of either wing of the oligarchy or the blessing of the mainstream media, you can’t achieve meaningful power. That’s not even mentioning the difficulty of getting on ballots in the first place, or gerrymandering.

If you somehow make it past all those barriers of corruption, good luck dealing with the fact that electronic “voting” machines produce easily hacked, unverifiable results that are tallied in secrecy. These machines are owned by private companies that are in bed with leaders of both parties and the intelligence community. If you have plans to go against the entrenched power structure, these “voting” machines will have mysterious “glitches” that make votes automatically go to one of the two puppet parties. Do you seriously think privately held “voting” machine companies and the NSA are going to let elections be won by real change-makers?

Alas, it would take a miracle for a meaningful number of candidates to ever make a serious run in the first place. Both puppet parties and the mainstream media will launch a relentless propaganda attack. Even if they could overcome that, the NSA will have enough private information on them, even if they are angels in their personal life, to blackmail or concoct false smear campaigns that will be carried out by psychological operations experts through relentless 24/7 wall-to-wall media attacks. If a critical mass of candidates somehow someway do the impossible, pull of a miracle of unprecedented proportions and break through all those barriers of corruption, then, at that point, you can be sure that there will be an assassination list with those change-making candidates’ names at the top of it.

If you’re naïve enough to think that this is all overly cynical exaggerating, you are not paying attention. Look at the assassination plans that were created for protesters during the Occupy Movement. Before they were able to crush a peaceful protest with brutal police state force, they were ready to start gunning down protesters. Just imagine what they would do if any of those protesters became serious candidates for the highest offices in the land. Whether you want to believe it or not, this is the reality of our present situation. Our political process is controlled by a tyrannical totalitarian regime.

After analyzing all options, the only real, legitimate option we have is to organize a grassroots decentralized movement that forms new alternative, self-sufficient communities. At this time, setting up autonomous communities is a commonsense solution, and the most effective way to avoid the fallout from a corrupted collapsing system.

Opt Out of the Tyrannical Regime!

“All men recognize the right of revolution; that is, the right to refuse allegiance to, and to resist, the government, when its tyranny or its inefficiency is great and unendurable. And oppression and robbery are organized, I say; let us not have such a machine any longer. I think that it is not too soon for honest men to rebel and revolutionize.”
– Henry David Thoreau, On the Duty of Civil Disobedience

We occupied in protest. We raised the awareness level of the 99%. We have had a significant impact on mass consciousness. Now, it’s time to step it up! As Jim Morrison sang, “They’ve got the guns, but we got the numbers.” Let’s start acting like we still live in a free society. Let’s opt out of the tyrannical regime!

The overwhelming majority falsely believes that we can’t create change, which is why we are in this mess. The mainstream media has propagandized most people into feeling like we can’t do anything to fix the problems we are confronted by. BULLSHIT!! We live in the richest, most technologically advanced society humanity has ever known. We don’t need the plastic puppet politicians anymore. They’re obsolete!

It’s time for us to evolve society by starting our own autonomous local communities. Occupy inspired thousands of autonomous camps. What if we reestablished those camps as permanent Sustainable Autonomous Zones? There are already many intentional communities and collectives that are organically growing all over the place. Let’s learn from them. We’ve dedicated our energy to working on a plan to create a decentralized network of Sustainable Autonomous Zones so we can begin creating self-sufficient communities that can model new ways of living that make present ways of living obsolete. As Buckminster Fuller brilliantly said, “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”

There is now a critical mass of citizens who are aware and capable enough to start these self-sufficient communities. Take it upon yourself to organize people in your community. Create independent social networks to communicate and organize, MEET IN PERSON, set up communities of support in your neighborhood. Bring a community of aware and capable citizens together in your own way and figure out systems that work best for you.

We Need a Do-It-Ourselves Revolution

Thriving communities can model new ways of living and we can create a support system that enables them to proliferate widely. If autonomous communities want to organize on a larger scale, there are now ways for them to easily do so. We are living in an interconnected technological society. People throughout the world have been experimenting with more efficient forms of governance. Liquid Democracy is an example of a dynamic and effective information age style of government that sane societies would embrace over what we have now.

Out of these communities, we can organically grow new systems of governance. We don’t have to fire a single shot or let the present situation descend further into violence. We just need to create a better system on a local level. As we prove the effectiveness of our new systems, the current system, which is already in a state of collapse, will crumble. If the corrupt establishment resorts to violence and attacks us again, it will only further galvanize the masses in support of us. A marginalized critical mass of people are suffering. Once we roll up our sleeves, lead by example and begin to provide solutions, they will be on our side.

It all comes down to a simple question: Are you a servant or are you a free individual? This is the most serious and profound question you need to answer, for your own sake, for the sake of your family and your future.

For all you free, aware and critically thinking people who realize that our current government is in a state of collapse and are ready for a Do-It-Ourselves revolution, we have just begun organizing on an independent social network called EvolveSociety.org. We would love for you to join and let us know what you are doing. Many of you are already doing inspiring and effective solution-based work. Let’s learn from each other and take it to the next logical level: decentralized autonomous local communities, which will form new effective ways of living, free from tyranny.

– See more at:
http://daviddegraw.org/shutdown-solution-opt-out-of-tyranny/