Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Published 31 years ago - But More Relevant Today

This little gem by John Pugsley was published in 1980. If you already know that inflation is really caused by increasing the supply of money (in 2011 creating trillions of $$ to bailout the politically-connected) you may prefer to skim the first few chapters. Because the economy didn't melt down in the 1980s (James Grant's work shows that trends and economic bubbles persist long after 'rational' minds expect them to collapse) you could consider Pugsley a hysterical Chicken Little always (erroneously) expecting the sky to fall.

Or maybe he was just ahead of his time. If he is correct about deliberate political and economic manipulation by predatory elites (and I tend to believe it would be sporadic and impossible to coordinate in some movie-style conspiracy), then their efforts are beginning to backfire sharply! Check out Part 2 and consider whether aspects of The Alpha Strategy by John Pugsley could work in the context of community resilience:
The production and savings parts of the Alpha Strategy are plans by which an individual completely avoids conventional investment markets, and instead invests his surplus wealth in real tangible and intangible goods, and stores these goods until he is ready to consume them, or until it is convenient to trade them for goods he wants to consume. Goods to be saved will include (1) the knowledge and skills of his trade, (2) the tools, supplies, and inventory for his business, (3) the regular consumer products he uses in his everyday life, and (4) raw materials and finished products that he can store for later trade with others.
This sounds resilient:

  • Invest in Production: your trade, tools, education, marketable skills
  • Save Consumables
  • Save Real Money
While I haven't entirely severed ties with the world of digital claims on wealth and standard investments, I am looking for ways to thrive in a world where community resilience makes sense.

As an example of relevance, author John Pugsley could have been writing about the the late 1990s thru 2008 (except people were buying w/ only 5% or nothing down):
Most homeowners saw the equity in their homes soar during the 1970s. Having bought with 10 percent to 20 percent down, and with prices doubling or tripling on single family homes, the homeowner has multiplied his initial capital by five to twenty times, and all this while enjoying occupancy of the house.
This explosion in value has presented many middle-class Americans with the first substantial wealth they have ever had. Residential real estate has been rising so steadily, for so long, that many Americans, especially those under forty, have never experienced a period of declining real estate values, and even most older citizens cannot remember when real estate was not going up.

[I saw this thanks to Al Lowi who shared a note from http://vahramsvalley.blogspot.com/ via Facebook. I love 'the network'.]

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