Tag Archive | "National Geographic"

The Value of Trees


Let’s look at the science, art and value of trees and many ways we can love (and profit ) from them.

I love reading Elizabeth Barret Browning’s  Sonnet 43 “How Do I Love Thee”.  I think first about my wife, children, mom, sister, friends and you, the reader, who adds so much purpose in my life.  This sonnet also reflects how I feel about trees.

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.

Recently I was speaking with Tom Kerr, the editor of Independence Monthly about qualities I seek when looking at real estate.

One quality I pointed out was “I look for trees“.   Tom’s conversation on this subject sparked my imagination about the value of trees.

“Logically,” I told Tom, “trees offer logging opportunities”.  Sometimes land can be purchased for less than the income logging the trees will bring.  Then I have to be honest, even though sustainable logging can help a forest, Merri and I have not been able to bring ourselves to log a single live tree for the 20+ years we have been on our farm.

There are so many other ways to profit from trees. “Let me count the ways”.

First, there are health benefits.

An article at the National Library of Medicine “What’s in a Color? The Unique Human Health Effects of Blue Light ” (1) show that color has an impact on our well being and health.

The article says: A major milestone came with the 1998 discovery of melanopsin retinal ganglion cells, a new type of photoreceptor in the eye. These cells provide signals to the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), the brain’s master clock. They project to many other brain regions as well, influencing myriad aspects of human physiology.

Researchers have shown in humans that light influences hormone secretion, heart rate, alertness, sleep propensity, body temperature and gene expression.

Another article at Livescience.com “Does the color green boost exercises effects?” (2) zeros in on some health benefits from the color of green.

Working out in the great outdoors may produce more psychological benefits than hitting the gym, suggest researchers who say that “green exercise” may boost mood, self-esteem, motivation and enjoyment. But according to a new study, the positive effects of green exercise may have more to do with the color green than with being surrounded by nature.

The study is the first to show that the color green may contribute to the  feel-good benefits of outdoor exercise, the researchers said. The findings were published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology in August.

In other words, we gain health benefits from blue skies and green forests!

I definitely make sure I surround myself with green when I exercise.

gary scott

Exercising by the oak in our Florida front yard.  We have numerous huge oaks at our Florida home.  One grows right through the middle of our houses.  This tree makes an absolute mess of leaves every year.  We love it!

I use trees in play.

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My grandson, Garren, and me in a tree house we built in our back yard.

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When my brain won’t fire right in North Carolina I pack up my computer, get the hounds and go work while sitting under a tree.

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The satellite image above is of our house at the farm.  The house is at the top of the lower left meadow.  This sums up how we like trees.

The hundred year + oak below at the entrance of our Florida house, and six others around including the one growing in the middle of the house sold us on our home.

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We earn income from wood.  I have never been able to log live trees but when they fall on their own, we harvest them and put them through a portable mill.

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The wood is cured and used for different things.

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We used this lot from a big poplar that died behind our house.  We used it to build our meditation and exercise Forest Room (below).

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The view from the deck is perfect.  I lay on my yoga mat and look up at all…

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the trees and blue sky.

Most summer days we eat on our porch while looking at trees.  (The porch table by the way came from a tree we salvaged on the farm.)  We build and sell them to add a bit of income to the local economy.

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That’s the science, health and profit in trees but the deeper quality is reflected in the arts.  The book Norwegian Wood: Chopping, Stacking and Drying Wood the Scandinavian Way by Lars Mytting sums this up with this poem by Hans Børli:

The scent of fresh wood
is among the last things you will forget when the veil falls.
the scent of fresh white wood
in the spring sap time:
as though life itself walked by you,
with dew in its hair.
That sweet and naked smell
kneeling woman-soft and blond
in the silence inside you,
using your bones for
a willow flute.
With the hard frost beneath your tongue
you look for the fire to light a word,
and know, mild as southern wind in the mind,
there is still one thing in the world
you can trust. — Hans Børli

A March 2017 National Geographic article “What We Can Learn from Trees?” (3) also shows and tells why we should look upon trees with wonder.

One of the trees that article shows is…

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a Montezuma cypress known as el Árbol del Tule.  The trunk, 119 feet in circumference and roughly 38 feet in diameter, supports a crown the size of almost two tennis courts.

Here is another spectacular lesson we can learn from trees the article shares.

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This Pando clone featured in the National Geographic spread is described:

Made up of 47,000 tree trunks covering 106 acres and weighing some 13 million pounds, is real.  It’s a single organism, a quaking aspen that began life as a single seed—possibly tens of thousands of years ago—and spread by sending up shoots from an expanding root system. (Pando is Latin for “I spread.”) Each trunk is genetically identical and no more than 150 years old, but the root system may be the oldest living organism on the planet.

That’s quite a lesson in longevity, of harmony and unity.  Maybe we should look harder at the wisdom of trees in our modern divisive world!

Whatever your reason for looking at real estate, to live on, to profit from or to protect, next time you look, stop for a moment (or two) and reflect on how many ways you can love the trees.

Learn about Independence Monthly below, a publication that can help you live a simpler, richer life among trees.

Gary

(1) www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov: What’s in a color

2) www.livescience.com:  Does the color green boost exercise’s effects

3) www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/03/wisdom-of-trees/

Message From The Tipi Man


Here is a message from a man who lives in a tipi that can help you prosper in the shifts we are living though.

See three ways to prosper by adapting to global warming.

When Merri and I first started our farm seminar center we constructed five tipis because they are so adaptable.

Fwd: gary-scott-tipis

Those we constructed at our farm but have since taken down.

So it is not surprising that we can gain wisdom on how to prosper from change by this man who lives in a tipi.

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Photo by Erika Larsen from the November 2011 National Geographic article “The People Who Walk With Reindeer”

See links to the picture gallery and article below.  The caption to this  photo says: Sven Skaltje was saddened to find the carcasses of two female reindeer whose antlers had become entangled during a dominance struggle in northern Sweden. He estimates it took three days for them to die of starvation. After separating the bodies, he saw from the ear markings that one belonged to him and the other to his cousin. Skaltje is much admired by the younger Sami in his herding group, but he is unsure whether the skills he teaches them will endure.  “Other cultures like the Romans and the Inca, were very important, and they disappeared,” he says.”That is life.”

What I believe this wise man meant was… this is reality.  This is nature. This is evolution.

As old cultures and ideas die away there is sadness… yet in each passing lies the seeds of the Phoenix that will emerge from the ashes.

Carbon Ashes

Another Inuit photo from the October 2011 National Geographic article “World Without Ice” by Robert Kunzig and photographs by Ira Block show that the need for adaptability and change are not new.

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Photograph by Ira Block National Geographic caption: Inuit Johnny Issaluk holds a recent photo of a South Carolina swamp. That’s what his home, near the Arctic Circle on Baffin Island, would have looked like 56 million years ago, when summer water temperatures at the North Pole hit 74°F.  See link to entire article below.

The article begins: 56 million years ago a mysterious surge of carbon into the atmosphere sent global temperatures soaring. In a geologic eye blink life was changed forever.

Earth has been through this before.

Not the same planetary fever exactly; it was a different world the last time, around 56 million years ago. The Atlantic Ocean had not fully opened, and animals, including perhaps our primate ancestors, could walk from Asia through Europe and across Greenland to North America. They wouldn’t have encountered a speck of ice; even before the events we’re talking about, Earth was already much warmer than it is today. But as the Paleocene epoch gave way to the Eocene, it was about to get much warmer still—rapidly, radically warmer.

The cause was a massive and geologically sudden release of carbon. Just how much carbon was injected into the atmosphere during the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or PETM, as scientists now call the fever period, is uncertain. But they estimate it was roughly the amount that would be injected today if human beings burned through all the Earth’s reserves of coal, oil, and natural gas. The PETM lasted more than 150,000 years, until the excess carbon was reabsorbed. It brought on drought, floods, insect plagues, and a few extinctions.

Where did all the carbon come from? We know the source of the excess carbon now pouring into the atmosphere: us. But there were no humans around 56 million years ago, much less cars and power plants. Many sources have been suggested for the PETM carbon spike, and given the amount of carbon, it likely came from more than one. At the end of the Paleocene, Europe and Greenland were pulling apart and opening the North Atlantic, resulting in massive volcanic eruptions that could have cooked carbon dioxide out of organic sediments on the seafloor, though probably not fast enough to explain the isotope spikes. Wildfires might have burned through Paleocene peat deposits, although so far soot from such fires has not turned up in sediment cores. A giant comet smashing into carbonate rocks also could have released a lot of carbon very quickly, but as yet there is no direct evidence of such an impact.

The oldest and still the most popular hypothesis is that much of the carbon came from large deposits of methane hydrate, a peculiar, icelike compound that consists of water molecules forming a cage around a single molecule of methane.

NG photos

Photograph by Ira Block  National Geographic caption: Today in the arid Bighorn, rust red bands of oxidized soil mark the sudden warming that occurred there 56 million years ago—which dried up the swamps that had been home to reptiles similar to the Okefenokee alligator pictured here.

Some research suggests that we are in the midst of a natural warming trend that began about 1850 as we emerged from a four hundred year cold spell known as the Little Ice Age.

Perhaps there is too much certainty in the world.

Certainty is an illusion of logic and if we combine our intuition with our logic we can adapt ore successfully by acting on events that seem uncertain no matter how illogical they are when they present themselves.

What to Do Now

That’s a lot of change and our world is changing again now.  Many computer models show that Scandinavia seems to be most resilient to ecological and human impacts of climate change. Indeed in the mid-term, numerous cold places, like Britain, Canada and Scandinavia will likely benefit from climate change, with longer, warmer summers, safer climate and increasing crop yields. The same goes for parts of the northern American continent.

Invest North!

Even though the thought begins without logic, Investing North has been incredibly profitable this decade.

Based on uncertainty let’s look more at opportunity in northern climes. We may not know what the weather will do in the years ahead, but we can guess pretty accurately what society will believe about the weather for some years to come.

There is a great chance that there will be a belief in global warming whether it is a reality or not.

So we should take advantage of this and follow the last of the seven clues we have been reviewing which is to adapt and adjust!

One northern area this site has been promoting for years is Scandinavia.

One can simply invest in Skandanavien shares or a Nordic ETF like the Global X FTSE Nordic Region ETF (symbol GXF)

The Global X FTSE Nordic Region ETF seeks to provide investment results that correspond generally to the price and yield performance, before fees and expenses, of the FTSE Nordic 30 Index.

I have just posted a 42 page multi currency update that shows two Global X ETFs that can help you gain extra value.   AMulti Currency Portfolio subscribers can access this report at their password protected site. Click here

See how to get your multi currency password here.

See more on ETFs from Morgan Hatfield at Ruggie Wealth Management at mhatfield@ruggiewealth.com

Another way to adapt to global warming is to do business in northern areas.

For example our Self – Publishing 202 Tidbit On Kindle course is introducing a self publishing service in Powell River Canada. 

One of our readers, after three careers (education, law practice, and business) moved to this small almost-ex-forestry mill town on the British Columbia coast. Many folks in Powell River are immersed in an effort to re-invent this small community (app. 20,000 people).

This idea fits with at least three of the themes we have been repeating for years… Invest in water…  Invest in Smalltown USA (Smalltown Canada may be even better!) and  Invest up North!  Watch for more on this in upcoming messages.

We are learning a lot about self publishing and how to publish for Kindle and more from this small town.

Powell-River-BC

Photo of Powell River British Columbia, Canada from the  bcadayatatime.com site (see link below)

Self – Publishing 202 Tidbit On Kindle Lesson Six has been posted.

Self Publishing subscribers can click here to access this lesson on your password protected site.

Learn how to get a password here.

Finally you might consider Icelandic bonds or investments.

A June 2011 Financial times article entitled “Iceland prepares $1bn bond issue” by Andrew Ward said:  Iceland is poised to raise up to $1bn in its first bond issue since the country’s banking sector collapsed in 2008, marking a step towards normalisation of its relations with international capital markets.

The dollar-denominated five-year notes are expected to price this week at around 325 basis points over mid-swaps, Europe’s reference rate, according to people familiar with the sale. The sale is managed by Barclays Capital, Citigroup and UBS.

A successful issuance would highlight Iceland’s gradual recovery from crisis and strengthen its public finances as the country nears the end of its International Monetary Fund bail-out this summer.

Iceland was one of the first European countries hit by the financial crisis but investors now view its debt as less risky than that of several more recently crisis-hit nations.

Iceland’s sovereign credit default swaps have fallen to their lowest level since the crisis at around 210 basis points, just below Spain’s and well below those of Greece, Ireland and Portugal.

That first Icelandic issue was oversubscribed two times!

Since the European debt crisis has now spilled into Italy… the US dollar may strengthen more and Icelandic bonds are a way to earn higher yields.

That’s quite a bit to fill our mental tipis with for a day… but as with tipis these ideas may seem strange but it will be unusual adaptable ideas that help us proper during change.

Gary

Learn how to make your mind more adaptable and how to invest north at our Mt. Dora.

The People Who Walk With Reindeer

World Without Ice

Global X Nordic ETF

Icelandic bond data

Iceland prepares $1bn bond issue

bcadayatatime.com

 

What R U Going 2 Do – Part Three “EKIGAI”


The power of “ekigai” can cure so many ills we see in the world.

longevity-images

Photo from National Geographic video... see more below.

That’s the power of capitalism…  to create “EKIGAI” that can help overcome poverty, inflation, illness, crime… giving and serving through trade can eradicate them all.

This is why we created our course International Business Made EZ  (IBEZ) course to help people have a better “EKIGAI”.

See what “EKIGAI” means below.

Now we are making real businesses available to subscribers of the IBEZ course.  Our recent message Global Freedom introduced how we are working with a dozen companies to create special starter packages and training programs and how we are starting first with these five businesses.

#1: Jyske Global Asset Management  (JGAM)

#2: Ecuador Imbabura Export Products

#3: Bio Wash

#4: Essential Oils

#5: Roses

We are not involved with these businesses (other than we love, use and recommend their products). We won’t make a penny from any reader’s business with them. These ARE NOT franchises or MLM deals.   Our only goal is to make our courses more effective and our subscribers more successful so they have more “EKIGAI”.

This message looks at Imbabura Ecuador Export Products and I want to especially focus on benefits of exporting beyond the profit… the “EKIGAI”.

One benefit of serving others is longevity.  There is a great short video at the National Geographic site entitled  “Longevity, the Secrets of Long Life, Sights & Sounds.”  This is where I learned the word “EKIGAI” that describes what I have always known and valued.I have linked the video at the end of this message and recommend your taking a look.

One of National Geographic’s explorers studied three areas where the residents were especially long lived, Okinawa, Sardinia and Loma Linda, California.

Some of the conclusions we should expect… Traditional natural food…  Social interaction with friends, family…  taking days off….not becoming marginalized… plus having ekigai… the phrase those in Okinawa use as “A Reason to Wake Up”.

The video sadly also points out that two of these long lived areas… Okinawa and Sardinia are losing their longevity qualities.  Families are breaking up.  Older generations are being marginalized.

Technology is driving stakes between generations. The busy life modern technology gives everyone and the ability to travel… to learn and communicate globally almost instantly is replacing (and in most places has replaced) the genetic and location centered social interaction of the family.   That life is very much gone and like Pandora, modern social ways will be hard to put back in the box!

The same technology however allows us to create our own new families and friends almost anywhere through service in business.  Take an Ecuador exports business as an example.

When you become an exporter you create your own family… your customers and your suppliers… bringing them together through your expanded horizons of the world.  No one doing something this good is marginalized!

Bonnie Keough on A Team Ecuador reports how families are being created on her export tours right now.

These are photos of the Sergovia family.

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This indigenous family lives in the countryside near Cotacachi.  They all work together in the family weaving business.  The males do the weaving, the females spin the fleece into yarn and dye it with natural colors.

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When I first visited them in 2010 they had no electricity and no indoor plumbing in their house.  It was basically one large room with a dirt floor.  This is where the family lived and worked.  The room was filled with large looms, yarn and a bed.

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They had candles in wire hangers over the looms so they could see to weave after dark.

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Their home and yard was neat as a pin and they were very happy to have our export tour visit them.  Currently, their goods are sold by only a few vendors in Otavalo.

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My first tour to visit their workshop was in September, 2010.  They welcomed us into  their home and demonstrated their weaving skills for us.

The delegates enjoyed meeting this hard working family and bought many of their products.  They gained a much better appreciation of all the time and skill involved in making these traditional Ecuadorian handicrafts.

I returned with a tour in November.  One of the delegates on the tour has a wholesale business and placed a very large order with the family. He ordered 500 tablerunners from them.

I saw this family’s eyes light up when they realized he was serious.  They promised delivery in two weeks and they delivered the complete order on time.

When I returned to their home with my January 2011 tour group, I was happy to see an electric service box on the outside of their house.  This was tangible progress. There was no electricity yet, but it was in the works.

Our April group visited the workshop and the lights were on!  Only a few naked bulbs hanging from the ceiling, but they have electric lights and no longer have to weave by candlelight.

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It’s so gratifying to see the positive impact our tour visits have had on this family. Maybe in a few more years, they will have an indoor bathroom!

I’m always looking around for artists and products.  Every tour someone asks me “How did you ever find this place?”

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Bonnie Keough

Here are some…

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happy…

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Ecuador export tour…

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delegates.

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An Ecuador export business can be small and earn just a little (to pay for your trips) or a lot.  One delegates just delivered 600 leather back packs.  Large or small… a business in imports and exports can help earn more and help others to live longer to enjoy the earnings with good “EKIGAI”.

Gary

We are creating a support program so Ecuador export tour delegates can have a support team in Ecuador to help with shipping and followup orders as well as sales and marketing assistance.

Learn more about joining the August 31, Sept. 1-2-3-4, 2011 Ecuador export tour.

Meet Marge… 100 years old and renewing her driver’s license. Photo from National Geographic’s website linked below.

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Click on National Geographic’s Longevity, the Secrets of Long Life, Sights & Sounds

More Electric Investing Ideas


Will the Volt put voltage back into General Motors shares?

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Will the new Chevy Volt add energy into an electric investment portfolio?

Probably not… because small is beautiful.

In this era of rapid change a company’s value is its idea… less its size and experience.   A monster organization like GM… even trimmed down comes from the muscle car experience. Changing course from the “Giddiyap 409” attitude to “Go Green” requires enormous effort.

Yet who will come out ahead?

Chinese? South Koreans…. even Japanese?  Europeans?

The Japanese and Europeans have the benefit with their small, crowded nations, narrow and winding roads. They have always had to think smaller than in the US, where soft big and fast were the norm.

Japan’s gas prices are almost double those in the US and Europe’s are sometimes triple…. so when America’s cars were getting bigger… Europe’s and Japan’s were shrinking.

The Chinese and South Koreans are relatively new to the game so their mindset may not be as formed.

Americans did not learn much from the 1980s oil crisis.  Americans made pretty crappy, small cars at that time… the Dodge Reliant…  yuck!  No wonder Chrysler went broke.

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The Ford Mustang had fallen from its great beginning to a miserable low and the Chevy Malibu wasn’t any better.  We should not be surprised that the Japanese grabbed so much market share.

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GM rebounded with the Suburban.  Ford watched F150 pickup sales soar. Chrysler  made the minivan an every day affair and American drivers moved from gas guzzling muscle cars to gas guzzling SUVS and trucks.

Here are reader comments from our last message about green investing.

Greetings Gary, Thank you for printing the electric engineer’s letter. He is a smart guy, and used good illustrations. In his passion for reminding us that a battery is like a bucket [of course he is right] he managed to throw out the benefits of the battery out the window.  I hope he doesn’t impede you from reporting on new tech you hear about in the future. We all knew what you intended. The real point is reducing our grid use [via wind solar, whatever] and being able to store it economically. If this battery works it is the breakthrough you reported.  Please don’t lose your passion, tell us as many of the details of the vision you see, please. Happy Trails, and keep up the good work.

No chance I’ll lose my passion! I have grand kids and my children are really passionate about this so they push me right along. From the investing point of view, I know that big problems create big opportunity and there are few bigger problems than environmental pollution.

Here is another reader:  In response to the solar battery section of this post, it may interest you to access National Geographic’s August’s “Picture of the Month”.  Scout around the site until you find the series of photos from their recent article on the current state of solar power technology.

You may know that the WSJ recently had an article about a meeting Correa had with a Russian delegation to discuss Russian help building a nuclear energy plant in Ecuador. The WSJ (which hates Correa) was on red alert. But the general feeling in other media is that the Russians are meddling in “our” backyard in response to us meddling in “their” former sphere of influence, particularly those missiles in Eastern Europe.  I continue to be puzzled why no one in Ecuador, or interested in Ecuador, is looking at developing a solar power industry. Apart from the obvious abundance of stable and intense year-round solar radiation, a distribution system along the north/south axis of the Andes would avoid all the problems of moving oil and gas through mountains and volcanoes from the eastern Amazon basin west to the Pacific ports for trans-shipment.

The lack of solar would seem a puzzle until one thinks it through. Solar power is still costly and poor nations tend to go with the least expensive choice.   Plus who would help?  Solar could make Ecuador independent and no one seems to have that on their agenda.

Mankind must become greener. This is a huge problem and because problems create opportunity, demand for electric cars that help the environment may continue to grow.

When looking at investment ideas in electric cars think small… the winners are not likely go come from America’s… big (mostly busted) three.

See Jyske Bank’s Financial Friday including an interview about electric investing in cars.

Gary

The greatest asset of all is the ability to earn globally in many currencies.

This is why we are providing a special three for one offer with our  course Tangled Web… How to Have an Internet Business that can help you create your own internet business.

Our emailed course “Tangled Webs We Weave – How to Have Your Own Web Based Business” is a continuing educational program.  You receive the first 28 lessons when you enroll and a new lesson every week or two.

This course teaches how to create a web based business and is developed from the ongoing experiences that we have from our successful and profitable internet business.

This course is well worth the enrollment fee of $299… but currently you also receive two additional courses FREE.

The other two courses are #1: International Business Made EZ, and #2: Self Fulfilled – How to be a Self Publisher.

These two courses have sold for $398 and thousands have paid this price. We add them to your course at no added cost as I believe they will help you develop a better business in these crucial times..

Even Better Get All three Courses Free

To make this offer even more compelling,  I am giving everyone who enrolls in our North Carolina or Ecuador International Business & Investing seminar in October or November all three courses, “Tangled Web… How to Have an Internet Business Course,”  “Self Fulfilled- How to be a Self Publisher” and “International Business Made EZ” free.

Join us with Jyske Bank and my webmaster David Cross in West Jefferson North Carolina. Learn more about global investing, how to have an international business at the seminar.

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina with our webmaster  David Cross & Thomas Fischer of JGAM

Or head south to Ecuador!

October 16-18 Ecuador Southern coastal tour

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Tour

Oct. 25-26 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Join us with Peter Laub of Jyske Global Asset Management in Ecuador. Learn more about global investing, how to have an international business at the seminar.

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador Seminar

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

December 6-8 Beyond Logic Shamanic Tour

December 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

December 11-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Join us in the mountains and at the sea. Attend more than one seminar and tour and save even more plus get the three emailed courses free.

Attend any two Ecuador seminar or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799

Ecuador Dental & Health Exercise


An Ecuador dental exercise can help you reduce your visits to the dentist plus improve  your health.

Almost anyone can use this and the other exercises below, with little time and no cost, below to enhance their health.

This is important because the existing health care system in the US is creating enormous stress and financial concern.

A recent article “Baby Boomers Struggle”in Baby Boomer Magazine pointed this out in this excerpt:

Paying for medical care has long been a struggle for many Baby Boomers as budgets tighten because of the economic crunch.  Even more obvious, Baby Boomers are skimping on needed treatment.

Nearly half of American Baby Boomers now report that someone in their family has cut back on their medical care or prescribed medications—postponing checkups, recommended tests and procedures; cutting pills or skipping doses of required medications; or not filling new prescriptions, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll conducted in October. That’s up from 42 percent of those surveyed six months earlier.

One in three Baby Boomers are having trouble paying medical bills, and one in five reports medical debt of at least $1,000.

“Even in 2007, before the economy really took a downspin, we saw that one in five people was having problems paying medical bills—up from one in seven in 2003,” says Alwyn Cassil, director of public affairs for the Center for Studying Health System Change, a nonpartisan health policy research organization in Washington. “But what we didn’t see last year were these rising rates in unemployment and the problems on Wall Street. The economy may not have been great then, but it wasn’t as bad as it is now.”

Before the fall economic fallout, at least 79 million Americans – including some 7 million Baby Boomers and older – were already struggling with health care bills. Now, more are doing what they can to avoid joining those ranks, even when it means their health and comfort suffer.

In a recent national survey conducted by AARP, one in five respondents blamed health problems on financial stress. About the same percentage said they had delayed seeing a doctor or other medical professional; many reported cutting back on drugs and necessary health care. Roughly one in five respondents also reported seeking outside assistance through drug companies, pharmacies and other programs to reduce their health costs.

Since the recent financial crisis made news, the American Psychological Association reports a 12 percent increase over last spring in people saying the economy is a significant source of stress; those hardest hit are women middle-aged and older.

The entire article shows how to reduce health costs (a link is at the end of this message) but misses ideas on natural… no cost health ideas like the Ecuador dental exercise below.

Actually these exercises are universal.  When Merri and I travel we watch for hints… ancient secrets that can improve our lifestyle.    Usually we find that the knowledge we learn in one country is connected in others.

Knowing how to simply maintain our good health and energy is really important during this economic downturn.

Recessions and depressions are the breeding ground for the next group of extreme rich.   Those who succeed need more than money.

They need good health and a great deal of energy and vitality.  These are the most important assets of all.

Plus the inflation that will come from all the government spending will make the medical systems even more expensive and less accessible.

Merri and I have enormous energy vitality and enthusiasm, running the farm, our publishing business and looking for what’s next.  Even though we collect Social Security, we feel as if we are just getting started.  Despite our heavy work load and travel schedule we seem to be getting younger.

One reason for this are some exercises we learned in Ecuador.

The first exercise is simply to have a cold shower in the morning.

In the early 1970s, Dr. Alexander Leaf was commissioned by National Geographic to study, and write an article about the world’s healthiest and most long-living people.

When Dr. Leaf began his study and his travels, three regions of the world were famous for the longevity of their inhabitants: the valley of Vilcabamba in Ecuador, the Hunza region of Pakistan, and certain portions of the Caucasus mountains in what was then the Soviet Union.

He traveled to these remote areas met, photographed, examined, and appraised these old and healthy people. Dr. Leaf listened to their hearts, took their blood pressure, and studied their diets and lifestyles. He watched them dance and saw them bathe in ice-cold mountain streams. He spoke with them about their daily lives, their hopes, their fears, their life histories. His goal was to separate fact from fallacy and determine the truth about longevity.

One of the Caucasus mountain centurions that Leaf interviewed made the comment. “If I have the strength to get in the creek, it is not my day to die”!

When Merri and I lived in the mountains with an Ecuador yatchak (one who knows), he taught us many exercises for vitality health and longevity.

Having read the National Geographic article, I was not surprised to see that one exercise each day was to, after exercise, bath in ice cold water… and then air dry.

The cold water after exercise rushes oxygen enriched blood to the organs. The hydrogen water molecules in the evaporation process binds with free radicals and helps purify the body via the skin.

In the Eighties, NASA research confirmed that regular cold water swimming leads to a series of bodily changes called “cold adaptation”, which lowers blood pressure and cholesterol and increases fertility and libido in men and women.

When Merri and I lived in our first house on the farm, we were next to Little Horse Creek… so each day I jumped in this chilled mountain stream… even in winter.

Here I am with our son Jake… one Christmas celebration amidst the ice and snow.

ecuador-dental-exercise

Once we moved to our new house on the farm, we were away from the creek so for efficiency sake, I  installed a spring fed pond in our back yard… continually filled with the same 59 degree temperature water… so I can jump in after my morning exercises. ecuador-dental-exercise

Brrr!

So what exercise to do before that cold shower?

The yatchaks taught us many exercises for longevity.  One often visited markets and one day he bought me a wooden carving of an indigenous ancient in a position of what could be considered exercise and or prayer.  Much of the ancient knowledge has been passed on orally and via coded painted wood and also preserved in Khipus (strings that passed through a knotty alphanumeric system).

After learning this Andean exercise I began seeing how ancients all over the world knew about this.

After receiving the figurine, sometime later I was inducted into an ancient order, the Knights Hospitaler, which has roots dating back a thousand years. Early on as knowledge of symbols was shared with me by the Grand Prior, I spotted something that even he did not know.

He introduced me to one of the grand symbols of the Order.   I did not say a word but saw that the thousand year old symbol of the Knights Hospitaler and my wooden Incan figurine showed the same exercise.

Lessons From Continents Apart

I do this exercise each morning beginning with a stretch to the sun.

ecuador-dental-exercise

Then squat down until your knee touches your opposite heel.

ecuador-dental-exercise

Bring your hands down to absorb the earth energy but do not touch the ground.

ecuador-dental-exercise

Then raise your hand to absorb the sun energy before standing back into the sun position.

ecuador-dental-exercise

This first of all increases your odds for longevity because it improves your balance.

Balance is like a muscle. If you don’t use it,  you lose it.

The two main causes of death in people over 40 years of age (after auto accidents) are falls and accidental overdoses from legal and illegal drugs.

An excerpt from a msnbc.msn.com article about accidental death says:

Alan McMillan, CEO of the National Safety Council says deaths from workplace accidents and car crashes have been fairly stable.

Older motorcycle operators also add to the death toll, McMillan said. Thirty-five percent of motorcycle deaths in 2005 were among bikers age 45 and older. A decade earlier, 15 percent of biker deaths were among the older age group. Motorcycle deaths in 2005 totaled 4,232, more than double the number in 1995.

Tips to prevent injuries from falling

Here are some tips from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the National Athletic Trainers’ Association to help prevent injuries from falls.

Keep muscles and bones strong, by following an exercise regimen:

— Strength training with weight bearing and resistive exercise works for all age groups.

— Practice exercises designed to help improve balance.

— Exercise at least three days a week to improve strength, flexibility and balance.
— Choose low-impact exercises, such as yoga, tai chi and Pilates to avoid stress on joints.

— Stretch daily to improve flexibility and mobility.

The rate of deaths from falls for people 65 and older rose 31 percent from 1999 to 2003, the council reported, which means that deaths from falls are increasing faster than the older population is increasing. A death within one year after a fall can be attributed to the fall.

“We tend to see our home as our safe haven. The data tell us it’s not,” McMillan said, adding that families can take steps to protect the elderly from falls by removing hazards and installing stair rails and grab bars.

Accidental poisoning deaths, mostly caused by medication or illegal drug overdoses, increased from 17,550 in 2002 to 19,457 in 2003. The rate climbed from 6.4 to 6.7 deaths per 100,000 people.

In other words the first way to increase longevity is to exercise for flexibility and balance, avoid drugs and medicine and sell your Harley! Then to improve the quality of heath and reduce the odds of illness, improve your nutrition.

Good nutrtion begins with your food choices and your mouth.

This is where the Ecuador dental exercise helps.   These exercise exercises and strengthens the teeth and much more.  They are incredibly simple and easy to do.   They stimulate the teeth and gums, plus help promote digestion.

First,  run your tongue around your teeth like a toothbrush. This stimulates saliva.

Increased saliva helps digestion.  Saliva also triggers production of a hormone that helps prevent tooth decay. Third saliva kills germs in the mouth.

Finally this exercise strengthens the heart because the tongue is connected to the heart.

Second, collect the saliva in the mouth and churn it around like a mouth wash.

Third, click the teeth easily together three dozen times.  This stimulates and awakens the gums and teeth.

Good health is one of the most mportant assets we can have and is increasingly harder to attain in the West as health care grows in expense. We can use ancient wisdom to overcome and eliminate health problems like the Ecuador dental and other exercises above.

Gary

Join us July 24-26 in the cool Blue Ridge during the hot summer and save $175.

We hope you’ll share our beautiful lifestyle in the cool Blue Ridge with us this summer. July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

I have just sent our multi currency email course subscribers a report on coffee related shares that now have a strong upward trend.

Enroll in our July 24-26 seminar and I will enroll you in our multi currency course and send this coffee investing report free. You save $175.

Merri and I love our life in the Blue Ridge… the rushing streams and..

investing-course

cool, green forest.

We invite delegates to the farm for lunch and we’ll take a walk through the woods with delegates who would like to…

investing-course

enjoy nature and the views.

We’ll have a wine tasting of Blue Ridge organic wines. Here are delegates at the tasting last year.

investing-course

I have just sent our multi currency email course subscribers a report on coffee related shares that now have a strong upward trend.

Enroll in our July 24-26 seminar and I will enroll you in our multi currency course and send this coffee investing report free. You save $175. July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Read the msnbc.msn.com article about accidental death at

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19080118/

Read the article Baby Boomers Struggle at

www.babyboomer-magazine.com/news/127/ARTICLE/1407/2009-03-20.html

Vilcabamba Ecuador Small Hotel


Madre Tierre is a small Ecuador hotel in Vilcabamba. Here is the entrance to this small Ecuador hotel.

vilcabamba-small-hotel

We have been sharing this series on Small Ecuador Hotels.

There is an Ecuador small hotel business opportunity in Vilcabamba now.  This message reviews this opportunity in a moment.

First, the subject of Social Security rules about working and owning a business abroad (that could reduce Social Security) and Ecuador’s new asset reporting regulation has sent many of you to the keyboard!

Yesterday’s message on Ecuador & Privacy raised many questions that I cannot answer personally.  As a financial publisher I cannot give individual legal or investing advice.

I can answer tax questions in general if I send the reply all readers. For example, one reader just ask: Gary, Re the continuing discussion of foreign & domestic taxes,

In the 1980s, my husband was working for an American corporation in Saudi. One incentive – at least back in the day – was that income earned there was exempt from US taxes unless the employee broke the contract and left early.

I realize that the situation of being an employee is different from being a business owner or being self-employed.  And I have no idea whether the arrangement described above applied to all US companies or some (the corporation in question was Bechtel).

That said, if earnings are taxed in the country where they are earned and then taxed again in the country of residence or citizenship, this constitutes double taxation – kind of like getting taxed on your income tax refund. Do your tax experts have any comments on whether international law allows or prohibits double taxation?

The answer is that there are tax treaties between the US and many countries, including Ecuador, so if you reside outside the US and are under another tax jurisdiction in another country, then you do not have to pay double tax.

In many instances there are even tax benefits… called the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion. The IRS code says: If you are a U.S. citizen or a resident alien of the United States and you live abroad, you are taxed on your worldwide income. However, you may qualify to exclude from income up to $87,600 of your foreign earnings. In addition, you can exclude or deduct certain foreign housing amounts.

There can be even greater tax benefits when you have a correctly structured business abroad. This is explained in the tax portion of our Tangled Web… How to Have an Overseas Business course. Joe Cox wrote the tax portion for me and the excerpt below explains how the benefit can be achieved.

The excerpt begins: Seven Taxing Levels

International business people have at least seven levels to choose from when they start their international business:

#1: Sole Proprietorship
#2: U.S. Corporation
#3: Overseas International Business Corporation or Limited Liability Company or Limited Partnership
#4: Foreign Sales Company
#5: Overseas Trust with Overseas Company
#6: Multiple Overseas Corporate Structure
#7: Overseas Corporate Structure with Genuine Non U.S. Shareholders

Over the duration of this course we will review all of these structures and when each works best. But whenever it is possible to attain, the seventh structure is always the best from a tax point of view.

This generally is the best from a business point of view as well because it means you have someone abroad helping you with your business.

Merri’s and my new business in Ecuador was this situation. We created a business using partners who will help us build the center, run it and provide the valuable knowledge.

This assistance is invaluable. We could not do this business (which I believe will so well as do good for the clients and community) without their help and involvement.

The tax key is that any business owned 50% or less by a U.S. person and 50% or
more by non-U.S. persons pays no U.S. tax. Such a company does not have to even file a U.S. tax return.

This is a complicated law, filled with land mines and I would not hope to understand or explain it all. Instead in this lesson I have asked my tax attorney to explain the legal aspects of this tax law. I will add my comments along the way to help you understand more in lay terms.

Essentially CFC law aims at stopping investors from putting money into an overseas corporation and not paying tax. This is because in general overseas corporations that do not do business in the U.S., do not have to file with the IRS and never owe U.S. tax. Subpart F of the Internal Revenue Code aims to stop investors from simply putting capital and investments in overseas companies and thus avoiding tax on the income from these investments.

Essentially the law creates three concepts. First, it creates the concept that income such as rents, royalties, interest, dividends and portfolio income are unearned and are different from income earned by business activities in a company.

Second, it creates the concept of when an overseas company is controlled by an
American. An American is any U.S. citizen, green card holder or resident.

Third, it creates the concept that if an overseas company is controlled by an
American, then that American has a personal tax liability on parts of the unearned income earned by that overseas company. You can see in Joe’s outline below as he clarifies the specifics in great detail.

Foreign Corporation Tax Issues by JOE B. COX, ESQ.

A. CONTROLLED FOREIGN “CORPORATIONS (“CFC”)

1.  The principal purpose of Subpart F of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) is to frustrate U.S. taxpayers’ attempts to defer the U.S. tax on income falling within Subpart F.

2.  Generally, Subpart-F income is “portable” income, which can be manipulated by U.S.

Taxpayers through the use of foreign corporations.

Gary’s Comments: This is one of the most interesting areas of tax law for the international businessperson. This outline will explain why sharing my business with Ecuadorians will create a tax paradise.

End of Excerpt.

Do not be confused.  Income tax planning does not necessarily create good Social Security planning.  If you have not reviewed your Social Security regulations and you plan to live and work abroad… see a tax attorney about this.

I have reviewed these rules with both my attorneys in the US and Ecuador.

My US attorney and very good friend, Joe Cox wrote:  Gary, I have set it up so my personal assistant April Barza can answer calls and e-mails and schedule a no obligation, no fee conference call on the questions that come out of your newsletter or seminar.  I would not want to give the government of Ecuador a listing of my international holdings.  I would think they would have no security with that information.  Joe.

You can reach Joe Cox at jcox@coxnici.com or his personal assistant April Barza at abarza@coxnici.com

You can reach my Ecuador attorney, Floridalva Zambrano, at FLORIFLORI58@YAHOO.ES

Back to small Ecuador hotel opportunity in Vilcabamba.

Recent messages have looked at Vilcabamba real estate.

When we began investigating Ecuador back in the mid 1990s.  Joseph Garzozi, the Ecuador Economic Consul in Miami was one of the first people we visited.

One of the places he recommended we visit was the village of Vilcabamba.

vilcabamba-small-hotel

The Madre Tierra restaurant at this small Ecuador hotel.

I researched this Ecuador village and became fascinated with the fact that some of the residents there lived to extreme ages.

Further research brought us to an article written in the January 1973 National Geographic entitled, “Every Day Over 100 is a Gift” written by Dr. Alexander Leaf. This article was written about the three valleys-one in Georgia (then USSR), one in Pakistan (Hunza) and the valley of Vilcabamba, where 1,080 people per 100,000 lived on average to be 100. The article compared this to three per 100,000 in the United States. More important those who reached a ripe age (even over 100) remained vital, sexually active, still work and participate regularly in the community.

This greatly peaked our curiosity and we started looking for ways to visit this valley.  This was easier said then done.  One reason the population was long lived was because they were isolated from the rest of society. Few people knew how to get to Vilcabamba.

Finally we found a national guide, Eduardo Quito, who could take us.   We flew to Cuenca where we met Eduardo and then drove south along the Andes for an entire day to Loja.   A Quito Loja flight would have been faster but we wanted to see this part of the world.

We spent the night in Loja and Eduardo drove us next day to Vilcabamba where we stayed at a small hotel, Madre Tierra.   This small Ecuador hotel was owned at that time by an Ecuadorian, Jaime Espinosa and his French Canadian wife.

Madre Tierra was a popular spot for Israelis  and other backpackers hiking along the Gringo Trail at that time.  There was a sign in Hebrew Letters that said “Shalom, Jaime’s Hideaway” and the room rate then was $9.00 per night for Israelis and $10 to $15  for all others.

The rooms were little thatched cottages sprawling down a steep hillside with rich gardens and killer views.  Breakfast and dinner were served on the terrace.

Backpackers were not very profitable guests.  It is hard to develop much revenue with $9 a night rooms.  Jaime and his wife were in the process of creating a spa.  They had just installed a spa, massage room, hot tub, steam and clay baths and special cold and water accupressure treatment.

They hired us to consult with them about how to upgrade their market so we spent an enjoyable day talking, thinking about how to get a higher grade of guest and enjoying the spa.

After working with the couple we headed back to Cuenca fully expecting to return to Vilcabamba with a group.

Then as the saying goes, “life happened.”  Vilcabamba is remote… an extra day’s journey when reaching Ecuador and this spectacular valley never worked into our plans.

However Vilcabamba did take off and we hear from many readers that they are moving or have moved to Vilcabamba.

We also heard that a retired actor and his wife had purchased this small Ecuador hotel.

Due to this background and the fact I am always looking for ways that readers can earn income in Ecuador, I perked up when I received the note below.

“Gary,  This is an emergency message for YOU and Merri.  You may recall that my husband and I own the Madre Tierra Hotel (Spa, Restaurant, craftsman
Conference/ballroom dance floor/theater Center) in Vilcabamba.  This is to
notify you, in case you have potential buyers or you would be interested
yourself to buy and/or make a commission, that we are putting the hotel, and
our home and guest houses, and our 360 degree view farm with mansion and
sugar cane mill, all adjacent and minutes walk to the village, up for
emergency sale.

This wasn’t an emergency until TODAY…as a family member has to go in for surgery tomorrow morning.

I do not want to handle the stress of anything else right now.  So I’m writing to tell YOU that we’d even be willing to sell both properties for the price of one.

In other words, this has suddenly become an illness, desperation emergency sale.

We left most of the main furniture there so someone could move in
immediately…and the hotel is turn-key  (World Travel Awards nominated it
for the third year in a row in the category of Best Hotel and Spa in Ecuador
category…it’s truly a paradise!).

vilcabamba-small-hotel

Here is the spa in this small Vilcabamba hotel.

Our six acre home/mansion with the most spectacular views of all time has three craftsman fabulous guest houses and stables, etc.   We are selling the 43 hectare farm that has a 360 degree view mansion and worker house and a working sugar cane factory, etc.

vilcabamba-small-hotel

View of the farm from the house.

We’ll take an offer from you or anyone and will offer a discount to any reader who comes down and stays at the hotel.

I have followed your work for many decades…and so appreciate you and
Merri.  Now, I’m letting you know about this…as I feel it would be a great
opportunity to add to your successes, and a wonderful deal for one of your
friends or contacts.

Perhaps you can find a buyer we’d love who would love owning our beautiful
properties as much as we have loved them. We know a lot of people would love
to live in the Valley of Longevity.   Again, these properties are adjacent
to each other and just minutes walk to the village…location location
location…the farm is located along the river (never flooded! And possible
for development or farming…)…has a pure water well and various
additional water sources available, too, and so much more.

vilcabamba-small-hotel

Madre Tierra conference room and theater.

Thank you for all you do for others and the world.  Much love to you both, Carol Rosin.

As mentioned I have not been to Vilcabamba nor Madre Tierra for at least 15 years. A lot appears to have changed and Madre Tierra appears to have dramatically upgraded its market.

This offers an opportunity for readers who live in or are thinking of moving to Vilcabama and want a business.  The seller offered a commission and we explained we do not accept commissions so this savings may help this make this a better deal for our Ecuador Living subscribers.

You read a full report on this offer with contact details as an Ecuador Living subscriber.

I have no updated knowledge of the property, income, profit and any buyer should use all normal due diligence in looking at this offer.

Regards,

Gary

We hope you’ll join us to learn more business and investing opportunities globally as well as Ecuador.

July 4-8 Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course

Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador

Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.