Tag Archive | "chemical fertilizer"

Room for Global Economic Growth

There is extra room for global economic growth.   We also have room for growth as individuals… and we should take advantage of this fact.

See below one of 54 high yielding global investments in water which we’ll review at the seminar.


Autumn arrived in the Blue Ridge and leaves started turning yellow gold and crimson almost overnight! I hauled out the flannel shirts and picked up the pumpkins and mums.

Our upcoming (October 7-10) International Investing, Business & Quantum Wealth seminar shares three ways to survive and prosper in our changing times.  #1: Making better global investments.  #2: Having a better micro business that earns extra income wherever you live. #3: Having better health, more energy and a clearer more intelligent mind and stable attitude.

Merri and I believe in growth as an expression of the expanding universe, which brings  expanding economies, and expanding human affluence for those who will take the time to expand their wisdom and stabilize their emotions.

This natural universal urge to expand means there is special opportunity in times of contraction.  Yet thinking expansively can be hard when surrounded by fear.  Being afraid can be catching so extra effort is required to enhance our fright immunity during times that are slow.

We believe this so strongly in room for growth that we have created our own room here in the mountains to help enhance our intellectual and emotional growth.


We call it the Forest Room because it is built on beams so it juts into the…


canopy of the forest. Here is the view from the deck.


The room represents many ideals for us, a juxtaposition of human ambition into nature’s order that represents the spirit of harmony with nature and its serenity.  The creek’s waterfalls below… birds wakening… sun warming filtering golden green through the forest’s crown.


The room represents the spirit of stability.  Our son. Jake and our friend, Mark Owen, did a great job pouring huge concrete footers for a strong foundation. Then we used 6 by 6s when 4 by 4s  would do (and the wood is locust the hardest of all woods around) so the building feels and is extra solid.

The room also represents the spirit of sustainability, built from reclaimed wood on the land.We harvested dead pine,  poplar, oak and locust, collected and milled it here on the farm.


Even the door in our meditation room is…oak-door

hand made from the oak we recovered…and richly dappled here by the morning sun.

This is sustainable timber which is important to us because sustainability is a huge problem in an expanding economy with fixed resources.

Big problems create opportunity and investments in sustainability in natural resources such as water can bring extra  profits to your investment portfolio.
This is why we’ll taker a close look at the investment potential of the water company Veolia Environnement. (France)

Last week’s message International Investment Update looked at 54 high yielding shares and focused on seven that are of special interest. One of these shares is Veolia Environnement.

The best investments sector for the past five years has been in natural resources.

This chart from Morningstar.com shows how industrial materials (natural resources) has been the strongest stock sector by far over the past five years, three years and in 2010 as well.

Veolia Environnement looks especially attractive to me for three reasons.



First, I like Veolia because they are one of the shares in the industrial sector sector and water is one of the most scarce industrial materials.

Veolia has more than 150 years of expertise in the environmental services business and is the world’s largest publicly traded water company. The company provides environmental services including wastewater treatment, collecting, treating, and recycling waste, supplying heating and cooling services, and providing public transportation. Veolia supplies drinking water to 78 million people, provides transportation services for 2.7 billion passengers, and treats 66 million tons of waste per year.

Second, Veolia shares did not gain a big recovery during the 2009 equity rebound. Here is a chart from morningstar.com showing the Veolia ADR price. The shares were hot, rising to over $90 a share in the 2006 stock bubble. Then they crashed in 2007 to $24. They remain low at around $26 now suggesting they may be out of favor and hence good value.


Third, Veolia shares are one of the 54 High Yielding Shares identified by Jyske Bank last week.

Jyske’s report shows that the shares trading in Paris at EUR 21. 05  have been paying an average 5.75% dividend.   14 of Boomberg’s analysts have a buy recommendation,  seven have a hold and four a sell signal.

During this era of high bond prices and high risk in stock markets, high yielding shares are one of my three favorite investments… the others are US and Ecuador real estate.  We’ll view these in upcoming messages.

We’ll look at 54 high yielding shares from markets around the world, plus US and Ecuador real estate at our  October 7-10 seminar.

Join Merri and me with Thomas Fischer, Jean Marie Butterlin from Team Ecuador, David Cross, my webmaster, Bob Shane  and Ann Russell Roberts for our October seminar…coming up in the Blue Ridge with all its autumnal glory!Enroll here. $749 Reserve here –  $999  Reserve for two.


Our forest room is for meditation, far infra red and exercise…foundations we use to maintain healthy energetic bodies.

The other foundation is nutrition (more on this tomorrow).
We built it to be perfectly situated for sunrise.  I go out early, sit on the couch, open the door to hear the dawn, wrap in a Russian made infrared  reflecting blanket and do my morning meditation facig east and…


the sunrise filters in through the forest crown.

Since my trousers have been shrinking around the waist over the last year, I have put them (the trousers of course) on an added exercise routine to supplement my walking.  Of course I have to wear these trousers while they exercise with 12 minutes of jogs and sprints on the…


rebounder mini trampoline (in the corner).  This seems to have worked. After a couple of weeks the trousers appear to have expanded and fit my waist better now.

Then I do my yoga and sun salutes as the sun breaches the ridge line and washes my face in golden warmth.  This helps awaken the pineal gland amongst other benefits. After that I jump in the infrared sauna.


Having kept up the jog with my trousers has ramped my systems up a bit so 12 to 20 minutes gives a nice cleansing sweat.  Coming out I stop and take a look at a  painting I did when we had a small North Carolina cabin with no land… long before we knew about our farm here.


Everything I painted then… the hound… the pumpkins… garden… the white cottage… the stream flowing… pear and apple trees… even the watering can… all materialized here.

This reminder… that we create our own reality and dreams… along with the meditation and exercise prepares me to truly expect another wonderful day filled with miracles, abundance and fulfillment.

Merri and I hope your days are filled with wonder as well.  We look forward to seeing you in the Blue Ridge for Autumn.


International Investment Purification

What is the difference between health and wealth? Not much, just WH.   They are very connected. Without good health, wealth may not last long…  nor is wealth very important when health fails, except to regain health.

We can apply an idea about having better health through purification, to enhance our wealth.  We can improve our wealth by removing toxic investments from our portfolio.

In a moment we’ll also look at investing in sustainable timber and see an Ecuador visa update.


Sustainable Timber.

First, let me begin with a purification health tip.

The tip is in the summer eat a watermelon.  Many ancient healing traditions (including Andean) view the body as having several elements including water, fire and air. Imbalances of these elements reduces energy, vitality, even leads to illness. The seasons too contain elements of fire, water and air. Water is predominant in spring, fire in summer and air in autumn-winter. Our bodies tend to accumulate these predominances during the season. In winter we have air imbalances (leading to dry throat called colds). In spring we pick up too much water (runny noses we identify as allergies, etc.). So at the beginning of each new season, it’s a great idea to clean the system out.

Watermelon is a cleanser of heat. During the summer the body accumulates heat.  Eat a whole, big watermelon if you can. This works in the summer when the flushing action removes excessive fire, water and air. The melon must be fresh, cut and eaten within 20 minutes. Watermelon is a sponge that absorbs and flushes free radicals from the system. If you let the melon sit after cutting, it oxidizes and loses its cleansing capacity.

Sound crazy? I thought so but tried it after watching a Shaman prescribe it for a woman suffering a severe rash (a summer fire imbalance). I felt so good, I make this a regular habit each summer. About once a month I eat only watermelon… three in a day if I can.

So how do we purify our investment & business portfolios?

One really simple tip for detoxifying your investment portfolio is to sell your losers and keep your winners.

This sounds awfully simple but forty years of working with investors has shown that most investors do exactly the opposite… except the pros. They all know… sell the losers.  Next time you invest, set a limit you will allow the investment to drop before you sell.  Stick to it!

The second trick is review your portfolio now. Are there any investments you hold that you would not buy right now?  Consider selling them. Take the loss and look for something better.

Another way to purify business and investments is to simply take a holistic long term view with expanded horizons.

Since we were looking at watermelon purification, let’s take investments in nutrition as an example.

Here is an excerpt from an article in Time magazine entitled “The Real Cost of Cheap Food” by Bryan Walsh:

Somewhere in Iowa, a pig is being raised in a confined pen, packed in so tightly with other swine that their curly tails have been chopped off so they won’t bite one another. To prevent him from getting sick in such close quarters, he is dosed with antibiotics. The waste produced by the pig and his thousands of pen mates on the factory farm where they live goes into manure lagoons that blanket neighboring communities with air pollution and a stomach-churning stench. He’s fed on American corn that was grown with the help of government subsidies and millions of tons of chemical fertilizer. When the pig is slaughtered, at about 5 months of age, he’ll become sausage or bacon that will sell cheap, feeding an American addiction to meat that has contributed to an obesity epidemic currently afflicting more than two-thirds of the population. And when the rains come, the excess fertilizer that coaxed so much corn from the ground will be washed into the Mississippi River and down into the Gulf of Mexico, where it will help kill fish for miles and miles around. That’s the state of your bacon — circa 2009.

The U.S. agricultural industry can now produce unlimited quantities of meat and grains at remarkably cheap prices. But it does so at a high cost to the environment, animals and humans. Those hidden prices are the creeping erosion of our fertile farmland, cages for egg-laying chickens so packed that the birds can’t even raise their wings and the scary rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria among farm animals. Add to the price tag the acceleration of global warming — our energy-intensive food system uses 19% of U.S. fossil fuels, more than any other sector of the economy.

And perhaps worst of all, our food is increasingly bad for us, even dangerous. A series of recalls involving contaminated foods this year — including an outbreak of salmonella from tainted peanuts that killed at least eight people and sickened 600 — has consumers rightly worried about the safety of their meals. A food system — from seed to 7‑Eleven — that generates cheap, filling food at the literal expense of healthier produce is also a principal cause of America’s obesity epidemic. At a time when the nation is close to a civil war over health-care reform, obesity adds $147 billion a year to our doctor bills. “The way we farm now is destructive of the soil, the environment and us,” says Doug Gurian-Sherman, a senior scientist with the food and environment program at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).

First Lady Michelle Obama’s White House garden has so far yielded more than 225 lb. of organic produce — and tons of powerful symbolism. But hers is still a losing battle. Despite increasing public awareness, sustainable agriculture, while the fastest-growing sector of the food industry, remains a tiny enterprise: according to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), less than 1% of American cropland is farmed organically. Sustainable food is also pricier than conventional food and harder to find. And while large companies like General Mills have opened organic divisions, purists worry that the very definition of sustainability will be co-opted as a result.

But we don’t have the luxury of philosophizing about food. With the exhaustion of the soil, the impact of global warming and the inevitably rising price of oil — which will affect everything from fertilizer to supermarket electricity bills — our industrial style of food production will end sooner or later. As the developing world grows richer, hundreds of millions of people will want to shift to the same calorie-heavy, protein-rich diet that has made Americans so unhealthy — demand for meat and poultry worldwide is set to rise 25% by 2015 — but the earth can no longer deliver. Unless Americans radically rethink the way they grow and consume food, they face a future of eroded farmland, hollowed-out countryside, scarier germs, higher health costs — and bland taste. Sustainable food has an élitist reputation, but each of us depends on the soil, animals and plants — and as every farmer knows, if you don’t take care of your land, it can’t take care of you.

Big problems create opportunity and investments in apparently obscure but sustainable food and energy ideas can help take toxicity out of your business as well as investment portfolio.

Sustainable may not seem profitable now… but neither did Microsoft when the idea of individual PCs began.

Sustainability is vital to our future. Sustainability is a huge problem and hence opportunity so though it will not arrive overnight…this is a sector we can invest in to detoxify our wealth.

Since we are connected to our investments… this process will also help us learn to eat and live better and help purify our health as well.

Sustainable Tables

Another way to purify your portfolio is to look for opportunities where you invest your own energy as well as your cash… like we are doing with our value added sustainable timber below.

Here is one little idea we are trying in our new little Blue Ridge Crafts business.

For years I have written that timber is a great investment.  Timber is the only commodity where the supply increases even when demand is down.  All you have to do during bad times… of low demand… like now is don’t sell.  Your timber continues to grow!

Now we are doing a business using dead timber and adding value!

We are turning dead wood, like this poplar log, into a business.


This poplar sitting right behind our house died a few years ago and dropped branches on the house all winter. This spring we trimmed off the branches and last week brought it down… cut it in three pieces and dragged them to one of our fields.

We set up a portable mill and…


cut over a thousand board feet of nice poplar planks.


We also…


cut one huge 13 foot long slab for a table top so if anyone is interested in a 12 foot poplar table… that you help design yourself… let us know.

This is a pretty small step towards sustainability but if we all think about ways to purify our investments, our business and body, our health and our wealth…at the big level and small will improve.

Ecuador Visa Update

A reader who travels frequently in business asked how to handle  the fact that Ecuador immigration policy does not allow a new resident to leave for more than 90 days a year for the first two years.

We checked with one of our Ecuador Living advisers, an attorney who specializes in immigration, who replied:

Please notice that in theory all resident visas come with the obligation not lo leave Ecuador for more than 90 days a year in the first two years.

Nevertheless, please be advised that authorities until now have not automatically removed a resident visa for this matter.

We have noticed that once the visa is stamped and if the passport is valid for more than two years, then you do not need to go to the Ecuadorian immigration authorities for anything else. This reduces the risk of the authorities reviewing how long you have you been outside of Ecuador during the first two years.

A good number of our clients have obtained the resident visa and have been outside of Ecuador far more than the 90 days with no complication whatsoever.

Anther option is to travel into Ecuador on a tourist visa which allows a stay in Ecuador for up to 90 days every year and this can be extended  for 90 days more.

Whether you want to live, do business or and invest in Ecuador, Smalltown USA or anywhere in the world… if you think sustainable, you are thinking… the future. This is a great place to be.


How We Can Serve You

Read the entire article “The Real Cost of Cheap Food” here.