Tag Archive | "GIGI"

Government Intrusion V – This Intrusion is Global

The fifth chapter in the Government Intrusion report shows how government intrusion is global and connected.

Before we look at how US technology in video and biometric surveillance are being tested globally,  even in China… let me express once more that the purpose of this report is not to lament these intrusions or worry,  but to understand them and adapt.

The change we see is natural… predictable in its randomness and part of our universal reality.

We can see nature’s motion..the way everything goes through phases of order and disorder in an experiment by Harvard students using pendulums. Here are some pictures from a video of the experiment. The video is linked below.

Screen shot 2012-04-19 at 7.17.47 AM

Harvard students built a device with a series of 15 pendulums in a row, each one slightly longer than its neighbor.

quantum learning tags:

Then they set them in motion and…

Screen shot 2012-04-19 at 7.18.03 AM

filmed the result.

The resulting patterns in this short video are fascinating to watch.   The pendulums of monotonically increasing lengths dance together to produce visual traveling waves, standing waves, beating, and random motion.

When all 15 pendulums are started together, they quickly fall out of sync—their relative phases continuously change because of their different periods of oscillation. However, after 60 seconds they will all have executed an integral number of oscillations and be back in sync again at that instant, ready to repeat the dance.

government-intrusion tags:

order… disorder… chaos… back to order.   Actually it is all order… just parts of it are so magnificent that the logic does not have the power to see.

The purpose of analyzing government intrusions is to understand better, get ahead and adapt.

Chapter two of this report expressed concerns about intrusion risks from drones and biometric scanning.

Here we can see how US technology with drones, cameras and bio metrics are being tested in Mexico and even in China.

Excerpts from an article at singularityhub.com entitled Iris scanning set to secure city in Mexico then the world says:   The million-plus citizens of Leon, Mexico are set to become the first example of a city secured through the power of biometric identification. Iris and face scanning technologies from Global Rainmakers, Inc. will allow people to use their eyes to prove their identify, withdraw money from an ATM, get help at a hospital, and even ride the bus. GRI’s eye scanning systems aren’t more secure than others on the market, but they are faster. Large archway detectors using infrared imaging can pick out 50 people per minute, even as they hustle by at speeds up to 1.5 meters per second (3.3 mph). The first phase of the Leon iris and face scanning project has already begun. It is estimated to cost around $5 million and focuses on law enforcement agencies’ security check points. Over the next three years commercial uses will be rolled out with banks leading the charge.

Whether you’re jealous or intimidated by Leon’s adoption of widespread eye identification you should pay attention to the project – similar biometric checkpoints are coming to locations near you. Some are already in place. 
   Many companies have developed the means to take an iris scan and use these reference points to match them quickly to a database of scans. The problem has typically been that getting the image of the iris itself is slow and requires people to come very close to the scanning device. GRI has focused on improving the iris acquisition side of the technology, increasing the speed and range of their devices. Not only that, but they are bringing the costs down.

This makes me believe GRI’s implementation in Leon is eventually going to exceed anything we’ve seen before. Every other means of access (license, credit card, keys, etc) has the potential of being augmented or replaced by iris and face scanning. Get on a bus, pass security on the way into work, pay for a meal, order packages online – all without using anything besides your eye. The Leon project could make this futuristic world appear in just 3 to 5 years. That’s incredible.

We have to put this in a larger context, too. India just launched its enormous effort to digitally identify more than a billion residents using fingerprints, face, and iris scans. Japan already uses finger scans during entry into the country. The EU is working on a variety of passive scanning technologies to help secure airports and other public spaces.

Government and commercial institutions will endeavor to create enormous shared databases of biometric data and scan huge numbers of private citizens everywhere they go. The first phase of the project in Leon is going to help track the movements of ‘watch-listed individuals’. Rapid scanning face and iris scanning technologies will redefine our sense of privacy in ways that make Big Brother seem like a little sissy.  Jeff Carter, chief business development officer of GRI, didn’t make any of this sound less threatening in his interview with Fast Company’s Austin Carr:  “…we’ve even worked with three-letter agencies on technology that can capture 30-plus feet away. In certain spaces, eventually, you’ll be able to have maybe one sensor the size of a dime, in the ceiling, and it would acquire all of our irises in motion, at a distance, hundreds–probably thousands as computer power continues to increase–at a time.”“…If you’ve been convicted of a crime, in essence, this will act as a digital scarlet letter. If you’re a known shoplifter, for example, you won’t be able to go into a store without being flagged. For others, boarding a plane will be impossible.”

For commercial applications it’s just as incredible:  “Right now, we can determine how many eyeballs are on a Web page. And what you look at and click. For the first time, we can do that in a physical world. If you look at this or that advertisement, and then go purchase the product advertised, we can tie those two things together.”

“When you get masses of people opting-in, opting out does not help. Opting out actually puts more of a flag on you than just being part of the system. We believe everyone will opt-in.”
Does that vision sound ominous to you? It does to me, and I’m pretty biometric friendly. Yet I’m also fairly cynical. People already have a pretty good handle on my information. Google reads all my emails, albeit in an anonymous way. My bank knows most everything I buy, ditto for credit card companies. As Carter points out, I already deal with these commercial trackers every day. And I’ve opted into these systems. I could pay for everything with cash, but I find the convenience of plastic too great to ignore. While I’m worried about being verbally assaulted by billboards that try to identify me, they’re going to arrive whether I want them to or not.
Rather than fight the advent of biometrics, I’d rather focus on controlling how such data is used.

This shows how global government intrusion has  come to  Mexico, India, Japan and the European Union.  China has not been ignored.

A New York Times article by Andrew Jacobs and Penn Bullock  entitled “A U.S. Tie to Surveillance Push in Chinese Cities”  by Keith Bedford says:  As the Chinese government forges ahead on a multibillion-dollar effort to blanket the country with surveillance cameras, one American company stand to profit:

Chinese cities are installing surveillance systems with hundreds of thousands of cameras.

The article tells how how recently, a US led fund purchased a division of a firm that may be the biggest maker of  videos for a Chinese government  program called “Safe Cities”. This program uses a sophisticated and modern program that monitors places where the public gather such as cinemas, campuses, hospitals, and places of worship.   The program allows the government to monitor from centralized command centers..
The company is called Uniview Technologies. They manufacture cameras and software they brand as “infrared antiriot” systems. The police or military can share data in real time via the internet through this system.

The article says:   Previous projects have included an emergency command center in Tibet that “provides a solid foundation for the maintenance of social stability and the protection of people’s peaceful life,” according to Uniview’s Web site.  Such surveillance systems are often used to combat crime and the manufacturer has no control over whether they are used for other purposes. But human rights advocates say in China they are also used to intimidate and monitor political and religious dissidents. “There are video cameras all over our monastery, and their only purpose is to make us feel fear,” said Loksag, a Tibetan Buddhist monk in Gansu Province. He said the cameras helped the authorities identify and detain nearly 200 monks who participated in a protest at his monastery in 2008.

For those who have read “1984” or “Brave New World”, this can be scary stuff… but every generation has had scary stuff evolving in their lives.  Ours just seems to be evolving faster.

The biggest problem is one of convenience.  Though using a credit card opens up all types of intrusion in the private and government sector we use them anyway because they are so darned convenient.

One can choose to opt out.  A recent BBC article entitled “The American who quit money to live in a cave” says:  Daniel Suelo lives in caves in the canyonlands of Utah. He survives by harvesting wild foods and eating roadkill.  He has no job, no bank account and does not accept government welfare. In fact, Suelo has no money at all.  Suelo may have shunned all the trappings of modern American life, but he is not an isolationist.

Since abandoning money in 2000, the former cook from Moab, Utah has remained an active member of his community and avid blogger.

Mark Sundeen, author of The Man Who Quit Money, admits many people would regard Suelo’s alternative lifestyle as bizarre. But the 2008 financial crash has led many to question the value of money. He explains some of the lessons found in Suelo’s philosophy.   

Merri and I in our isolated farms in both North Carolina and Ecuador have gravity fed spring water… abundant food growing on the land and could live there without electricity or external contact with the world.

The key though is the word “could”.  Dropping out requires changes in lifestyle that most of us are not willing to commit.

Since we want the convenience, there is little we can do to stop this intrusion.   Our modern electronic world brings huge benefits… but also invites intrusion.

Upcoming chapters will look at what we can do. There are rays of hope… plus we can see everyday ways to profit from the change and intrusion.

For example Chapter Four of this report looked at the dreaded IRS Form 8938.  The conclusion is to adapt and be better at keeping records.

The very next day two articles in USA Today outlined benefits we can gain from this.

The first entitled “http://www.pressdisplay.com/pressdisplay/viewer.aspx

Budget-battered IRS sinks under workload by Sandra Block says:  At the walk-in center in East Harlem, N.Y., Belquis Castillo, 40, left in exasperation Monday afternoon after waiting more than an hour. Castillo needed copies of her 2010 tax return so her son can enroll in online college courses, but was told the computers were down.

The long waits are the result of the IRS’ expanded workload and diminished workforce, says IRS Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson, whose 2011 annual report identified inadequate resources as the most serious problem facing taxpayers. In 1995, the IRS had a staff of 114,018 to process 205 million tax returns. In 2012, it has 90,907 people to process nearly 236 million tax returns. For this tax filing season, the IRS has 5,000 fewer employees than it did a year ago.

“This is the lowest staffing level I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been with the IRS 26 years,” says David Carrone, president of the Louisiana chapter of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU). The

This is a really significant article in my mind published by the largest circulation newspaper on April 17, 2012.    The mainline press are the first (after the IRS perhaps) to sense weakness and go for the jugglar… to draw blood.  Normally on the last day taxes are due the IRS PR system has managed to get an article in the press about the dangers of not filing tax returns in a timely way.  This year the roles are reversed… the press is after the IRS not the taxpayer.

Here is a really vital idea that shows a way that some are already profiting (through service) from the power of being organized.

Another USA Today article entitled by Craig Wilson entitled “Got Clutter? There’s an expert for that.  Craig’s article tells how a CPOs, certified professional organizers are  professionals just like doctors and lawyers. Here is an excerpt from his article which I linked below:   The 4,000-member National Association of Professional Organizers met here recently, just in time for the annual spring cleaning at your house. You have clutter. Admit it. That’s the first step.

“Organizing” is big business and growing, the industry having doubled in size in just the last 10 years. Although there are no firm figures, the industry — including professional organizers and big-box retailers such as The Container Store— is heading toward being an estimated $1-billion-a-year business.

“Doctors save lives and we change lives,” Izsak says. “We’re not a luxury service. We’re a necessity. We truly have an impact on humanity. How many can say that at the end of the day?”

Such efficiency comes at a price, of course. Fees for a professional organizer can range from $50 to $200 an hour, depending on the CPO’s experience, the chore at hand and the location, cities being more expensive places to live if you’re messy. You don’t want to be a hoarder in Manhattan.

Both the shaky economy and the fragile psyche of the country is working in professional organizers’ favor.

“People feel like they’ve lost control of their lives,” Izsak says. “That’s where we come in. The one thing they can control is themselves, their time, their lives. So they reach out to us.”

There also are trends to be found among the clutter. Cleaning up the computer has become as important as cleaning out the cupboard.

The other big trend involves senior citizens. More than 10,000 people in the USA turn 65 every day. “That’s 10,000 new customers every day,” Robertson crows.

“There is so much money to be made in this industry,” he says, acknowledging that his yearly salary now is “way into the six figures.”

Ann Gambrell, an organizational consultant in Torrance, Calif., saw this coming years ago. She is one of the five founders of NAPO in 1985, so long ago that when she said she was helping people organize, most everyone thought she was organizing labor strikes. She now runs Creative Time Plus.  Kind of like all the stuff stored somewhere in the bowels of our computers.

Digital stuff can pile up

Lauren Halagarda is a CPO based in coastal North Carolina. She calls herself a “technology translator.” Her company, the Organization Connection, specializes in helping people get their digital life in order.

Wow… increased government intrusion means we need to be better organized. because the government is intruding because it is battered… its intrusion loses effectiveness if there is organization.

Here is some positive ideas we can derive from this thinking.  This reality has created an entire new industry… Organizing.  CPOs (Certified Professionals Organizers are earnings six figure incomes! Wow!

Advances in technology make our lives better in many ways but also create increased government intrusion.   This evolution is natural and at times will create apparent chaos… which is simply a greater order that our logic cannot process.  Every problem this chaos creates also develops opportunity such as the inflow of increased data to the government, which can overburden  its increasingly less dependable staff.  Those who maintain increased order during such chaos can be in charge and in very strong positions. Government intrusion even creates new opportunities for tax preparers and other professionals such as CPAs.

Next time you think government intrusion, be disgusted Yes. The government has no business in our homes… but since we invite them in through convenience… look for the way that this natural process can also benefit you.


One way to profit from change is to be smarter which is why we include super thinking tactics in our Writer’s camps.

Learn Super Thinking and Spanish.

Learn Spanish in Three Days


Learn Spanish in Three Days ONLINE

Instant $110 discount on the course!

The “Learn Spanish in Three Day Course” is now available online.

Read below to see why we are offering our Super Spanish course online for the first time.

Speaking Spanish is a huge benefit on its own.  You can become one of the rare North Americans who can get along in Spanish speaking countries.  You can be one of the special people who can communicate with 10 million non-English speakers in the USA.  Spanish is the second most used language in the USA.  There are more Spanish speakers than speakers of Chinese, French, German, Italian, Hawaiian, and the Native American languages combined.  According to the Census Bureau, Spanish is the primary language of nearly 50 million people in the US.  This is the largest Spanish-speaking community outside of Mexico. Only half of these speakers also speak English “very well,” and 19% do not speak Spanish at all.

You can tap into all this potential when you speak Spanish.  Yet there are more benefits.

An article in England’s leading newspaper, the Telegraph, entitled “Why learn a foreign language? Benefits of bilingualism” (1) sum up the biggest benefit of learning a second language and increased intelligence.  The article says: “Learning a foreign language is more than just a boost to your CV or handy for traveling.  It will make you smarter, more decisive and even better at English.  Physiological studies have found that speaking two or more languages is a great asset to the cognitive process.  The brains of bilingual people operate differently than single language speakers, and these differences offer several mental benefits.”

The article then explains studies that show seven cognitive advantages gained from learning a foreign language.

#1:  You become smarter
#2:  You build multitasking skills
#3:  You stave off Alzheimer’s and dementia
#4:  Your memory improves
#5:  You become more perceptive
#6:  Your decision-making skills improve
#7:  You improve your English

Does it sound impossible to learn Spanish in three days?  Yes, it is impossible when you try to learn Spanish in the old, traditional way.

Though you may choose to take more time using this course to learn Spanish, thousands of our readers have learned at our Spanish courses.

There is a scientific method of learning… proven and described in numerous best selling books that create educational jumps by making education natural, easy and fun.   This course works because it is education without stress!

This method was created and refined by the Bulgarian educational master, Georgi Lozanov, who transformed the entire Soviet educational system to such a degree that this third world country beat the USA into space.

Merri was lucky to be one of a handful of students outside of Bulgaria who were allowed to be taught this system in the early 70s.  She practiced this unique and remarkable form of education for  four decades. It was a delight!

Merri and I began integrating these techniques with other shamanic and educational tactics we had gained in our global travels and then applied them to teach Spanish in three days.

The course has been proven again and again by the thousands who have used this system.  You can read a few of the many raves we have received from delegates who have learned from the Super Thinking Spanish course we created.

Here are a few quotes from delegates of the course.

One delegate from St. Louis wrote:  Hi Gary,  Just ended forty-five years in dentistry last week, and I’m on to a new career.  What is my new career?  Still formulating, but the eye -opening,mind expanding Super-Spanish course last weekend in St. Louis surely shows me the opportunity exists to expand my horizons.

Besides having a lot of nice people to learn our new language; the methods Merri and you developed proved to be just what you said they would be.  We all and I in particular relaxed our way to new learning.  I feel so very comfortable with the basis of my new language skills that I know I will be spitting out great Spanish sentences by the time I reach Ecuador in October.  Last year I spent six weeks in Ecuador and now I plan on conversing with the people.

Today’s excerpt of your newsletter really hit home. You do what you say you will. There are no surprises or hidden sales tricks. The only tricks are beneficial to our learning.  Thank you for a wonderful experience that I was quite unable to grasp how you would pull it off.  You did, however, and I look forward to other courses that you offer, and I have absolutely no doubt they also will work beneficially.  Best regards, Denis Molloy.

Another wrote about the Super Spanish course:   Buenos Dias, here is a testimonial for Super Thinking-Super Spanish.  Please feel free to use all or part in promotions for the course.  In addition, you may give my email address to any prospect “on the fence” about enrolling.  Yesterday, in Cotacachi, Ecuador, I finished Super Spanish.  I had high expectations for the course and they were exceeded.

After three days, I can speak Spanish in complete sentences. In simple conversations, such as buying groceries or ordering a meal, I can make myself understood. I think that’s incredible!

Although I am far from the competence level of a native speaker, I feel I’ve taken a giant step forward in learning Spanish so that I can experience the people and culture of Ecuador.  The foregoing benefits would have more than justified the time and money I invested in Super Spanish.  And learning some Spanish was not the most important benefit I got from the course.

Prior to leaving the USA, I had felt for some time that the pace of life there was unhealthy for me (and for most people) and I did nothing about it.

I’ve thought about the pace issue during the course.  One of the key elements Merri Scott designed into Super Spanish is placing the student in the optimal state for learning.  In class, the past three days, I’ve been re-introduced to guided journeys and introduced to the calming effects of Baroque music (www.sundaybaroque.org).  What a blessing! I’m inclined to make one or both a daily part of my life.   Rob Christi.  Cotacachi, Ecuador

Another attendee from a course wrote:   “I took this incredible class a few weeks ago, and I would like to tell anyone that is interested, that it is an amazing three days of learning with lots of laughs included. You leave everyday wanting to learn more and are so excited to do so.

“Other Spanish classes and tutoring made us feel like it would take forever to get to the point where we could put it into practice, but this method gave us a more fluent use for everyday life almost immediately AND the confidence to use it.  It is a fantastic way to show people how much they know and give confidence to learn and use Spanish creating a momentum.

“They made learning Spanish easy and fun in a very relaxed, comfortable atmosphere.  I would definitely recommend this course.  Even if you know some Spanish, this helps make it easier because of the less stress that no verb conjugations gives you.  This gives you more confidence in yourself to try and speak it more.

 “The stress free atmosphere and tons of interaction and participation were very conducive to learning.  The relaxation techniques alone are worth the price.  The fact that I can now feel more comfortable conversing in Spanish with my new friends and neighbors is priceless.  Muchas, muchas gracias.”

“I loved the relaxed environment.  I picked up quite a lot of new vocabulary.  I found this course very informative about how the language works, how I can make sentences and understand others better!  Muchas Gracias!  I had a call from Telcel (the local phone company) after our second class and I was able to speak and understand them for the first time. Despacio (meaning slowly) … a great word!  Everyone should take this course before they pick up bad habits.”

“I liked how simply the course was organized and the positive attitude about learning.  Thank you so much for helping me to learn Spanish!”

“I liked the laid back yet professional approach.  I highly recommend this new, relaxing method of learning Spanish,  I feel a lot more confident in the delivery of my words and sentences. It was taught in an excellent and very professional way.

“It was a very enjoyable class.”

How The Course Works

The first tactic is to use Baroque music in the learning process.  At least three best selling books, “Superlearning”, the “Mozart Effect” and “Superlearning 2000” have revealed insights about how to learn and think more powerfully based on systems drawn from the Bulgarian educational master, Dr. Georgi Lozanov.  Merri Scott was among just a few who learned directly from Lozanov.

The second tactic uses 17 unique lessons to provide Spanish fluency in a short time.   Let me prove to you how this tactic works by teaching you hundreds of Spanish words in less than 30 seconds.

Here is the proof.

“Most words in English that end in ION are almost identical, just pronounced differently.  For example action is accion, education-educacion, manipulation- manipulacion, etc.”

There you have it.  How long did it take you to read the sentence?  You now know hundreds of Spanish words that you will never forget.

See examples of the words you already know below.

How long would have taken you to memorize all those words?  How soon would you have forgotten them?

This is just one of seventeen Spanish lessons in the course.

The next lesson teaches how to pronounce each of the nouns.

Then, the third lesson teaches almost as many verbs, almost as quickly.

The fourth lesson shows how to avoid conjugating verbs by sticking with the infinitive (far easier than it sounds).  This simple lesson leaves a person sounding like a Spanish professor without ever conjugating a verb.

Lesson five shows how to sound infinitely polite and yet get almost anything desired in Spanish.

Lesson six gives valuable connectors and the seventh lesson triples the Spanish capacity with three words for “yesterday,” “now” and “tomorrow”.

By the end of three days you feel comfortable speaking Spanish.

Plus the system is Impro-Dynamic.  This means your Spanish keeps getting better even though you do not seem to be studying… practicing… or speaking Spanish.

I was amazed by this as I traveled back and forth from the USA to Ecuador.  The longer I was away from Ecuador… the better my Spanish became.  My second language was automatically improving The self improving feature comes because you learn to create Spanish sentences rather than remember them.  The portion of the brain that creates is more powerful than the portion that recalls.  When your mind creates something… it owns it!  You do not have to remember .

During the course you learn 4005 Spanish words that you already know .  

You then learn how to create Spanish sentences from these words.

Throughout the course you learn how to pronounce the sentences you create.

When the course ends… the mind keeps working… and creating… so next time you begin to speak Spanish you’ll be surprised .  You improve even though you have not actively worked on your lingual skill.

Due to the difficulty of getting groups together to learn this valuable technique, we created an online program for subscribers to use the Super Spanish course at home.  Normally $149, this is available at the highly reduced price of $79. Simply use coupon code SPANISH110 at checkout.

I’ll be in touch personally via email with each person who signs up for this course to see how it works or what is required to make it better.  Once this test is complete, we plan to offer the program on a larger scale and at a much higher price.

The ONLINE course has our, full satisfaction or money back, guarantee.  Try Super Spanish for 60 days.  If not fully satisfied, simply let us know for a full refund.

Learn Spanish online $79 – using coupon code SPANISH110 at checkout to immediately save $110 off the regular price of $149

Here are more testimonials from previous Super Spanish Courses.

Maggie wrote: It didn’t really seem possible that we would be speaking and understanding Spanish in only 3 days but the course made it happen in a very supportive learning environment.  I would highly recommend this course for anyone wishing to learn “practical Spanish”.  The teaching methods, use of relaxation, the use of native Spanish speakers for pronunciation and the teachers themselves who were approachable and helpful and always positive made this a very valuable class.

This course improved my self confidence in my ability to learn and retain a language.  It was presented with genuine enthusiasm, great energy and the style of learning is very effective. Gracias!  It was a great experience.

Nadine wrote: “Just spent the last 3 days in the most wonderful learning environment learning Spanish.  What an amazing learning experience!!  First day out of class and I could not stop thinking in Spanish WOW!!  I am amazed by how much I learned, retained and how much more is showing up now that I am out of class.  And the best part is THERE WAS NO STUDYING!! Indeed this is Super Thinking!!!  I would highly recommend this to anyone that has ever had a desire to learn another language or learn anything in record time.

And a few days after that ….  As I went through my day, just hanging out with my son, I could see myself starting to think in Spanish.  At first I thought it was amusing but as it continued and increased I thought “My goodness this is really remarkable amazing” It was really an effortless unfolding.  I wasn’t at any point “trying” to think in Spanish, just words I knew would fly across the screen in my mind.  And then this afternoon, my son cuddled up on the couch to watch some cartoons on his ipad and was watching Peppa Pig in Spanish…hmm coincidence?  I think not, I’m radiating Spanish so much that my son is being influenced!  Thanks a million again.  This weekend the best learning experience of my life!!

If you have ever had a desire to learn Spanish this is the way to do it!  By the end of the first day I had more confidence and more practical ability than I had from any previous courses I had taken.  It was fun and relaxed and full of laughter.  You will leave this class excited to use what you have learned.  Rather than leaving overwhelmed with how much you have yet to learn and master, you are equipped with the knowledge and know how to go out and communicate as well as the excitement to do it!”

Gary noted:  “The whole approach is positive and conducive to learning at a level that benefits ALL participants.  It is not intimidating and does not set up a pass/fail atmosphere.  The presenters are terrific and the results unbelievable.  It was relaxed, informal, friendly and effective.”

Twila said:  “This class provided a very refreshing and relaxed way of learning.  The atmosphere felt very safe to say the words you were practicing.  I learned a lot in a way that will make it easy to apply.  Starting with conversation is way more fun.  How quickly you can learn!  It was a great group, great instructors and great stories.

The atmosphere in the classroom was so relaxed that learning Spanish felt like a breeze and not like a painful task.  The relaxation exercises are really conducive to language learning.  We learned A LOT in a short time and it was fun and the environment was non-threatening.”

Brigitte sent this:  “Buenos Dias, Suzanne. su clase de espanol es excelente! Muchas Gracias!  
I have already done what you suggested and went into the program listening to the music and going over the lessons.  I know: Repetition……reinforcement…..thinking in the new language….it’s all part of it.  I loved your course and will certainly recommend it to friends.  Who knows….I might feel the urge and have the opportunity to repeat it at your beautiful place in Puerto Aventuras…..Quien sabe? Hasta otro dia y saludos a su familia.”

Marie wrote:  “I would highly recommend this course.  The amount covered in 3 days is amazing!  All with no stress.  The correlation lessons and pronunciation practice has greatly reduced my anxiety to go out and use my Spanish.  I really enjoyed the whole process and thank you for the take away tools.”

Learn Spanish online $79 – using coupon code SPANISH110 at checkout to immediately save $110 off the regular price of $149


Here is the English translation of a few of the many Spanish words you now know and will never forget.  How long would it have taken you to memorize them?  How soon would you forget?

“Most words in English that end in ION are almost identical, just pronounced differently.  For example, action is accion, education-educacion, manipulation- manipulacion, etc.”

Some more of these words:  Combination, Attrition, Education, Vacation, Petition, Lotion, Motion, Construction, Abduction, Pronunciation, Concentration and a ton of others!

Learn Spanish online $79 – using coupon code SPANISH110 at checkout to immediately save $110 off the regular price of $149

(1) www.telegraph.co.uk Benefits-of-bilingualism.html

See total sciencedemonstrations.com article and video

See Singularityhub.com iris scanning in Mexico article

A U.S. Tie to Surveillance Push in Chinese Cities

The America who quit money

Budget-battered IRS sinks under workload

Got Clutter


Government Intrusion IV – Horrible Numbers “8938”

Government Intrusion IV – Horrible Numbers, 8938

gary-scott-sunrise tags:

The sun always rises somewhere.

Sometimes I have to work hard remembering that every new problem creates an opportunity… especially when there is some added form of really ridiculous government intrusion.   Therefore, I spent extra time watching the sunrise this morning to rebalance my thoughts as I pondered  government intrusion in the form of 8938.

What a pain!

An Ecuador Living Club member recently sent me this note:  Gary,  Can you help on this one? Is Real Estate considered a Foriegn Financial Asset for reporting purposes on the new form 8938? Also, I have a construction deal going on where the builder takes payments and a fiduciary holds funds in escrow until completion. Would this be considered a Foreign Financial Asset while being held in escrow? I know you are not a tax expert but probably have been asked this question before.

If you don’t know, could you refer me to someone that can answer? I called the IRS directly and they have not been trained on that one and did not know the answer! Can you believe it?   Thanks for your help.

I did not know and referred this to my friend and tax attorney of decades, Joe Cox.  Joe when it comes to tax attorneys is as good as it gets. He has specialized in the areas of estate planning, insurance, trusts and taxation for over 40 years and is Board Certified in Estate Planning and Administration and in Taxation by the Florida Bar.

In addition to the Board Certifications, Joe is a Fellow in the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. He is a member of the American and Florida Bar Associations, and is admitted to the Federal Appellate Courts and the United States Tax Court. Joe is a frequent speaker on tax planning topics such as income taxes, insurance trusts, irrevocable trusts and offshore asset protection trusts. He has also written numerous articles and books regarding income tax and irrevocable trusts. Joe is listed in “Who’s Who in America” and “Who ‘s Who in American Law”. He was selected by Florida Trend Magazine as “One of the Top 1.6% of Lawyers in Florida,” and “One of the Top 34 Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning Lawyers,” and was chosen by Worth Magazine as “One of the Top 100 Attorneys in the Nation.”

Among his community commitments, Joe has served many organizations in a leadership position. These include: Naples Community Hospital, Community Foundation of Collier County, YMCA of Collier County, Community School of Naples, Alzheimer’s Association, Forum Club, and Senior Friendship Centers, Inc. He was also named the Child Advocate of the Year.

Joe repliedGary/Al:  The rules are still not that clear.  But, the penalties are so great we are erring on the side of caution and filing and disclosing.  Real Estate in your own name, no filing is required.  Real Estate in a corporate entity, you should file the 8938.

Foreign financial account that you have an interest in that exceeds $10,000-then you must file TDF 90-22.1 (FBAR/Foreign Bank Account Reporting).

Have your accountant file both forms.  To be safe and big penalty free.   Joe

This is the height of government intrusion… an IRS requirement that carries heavy penalties yet even the IRS nor one of the best tax attorneys in the country understands all the rules.

This is just plain nuts.

A New York Times article of two days ago entitled “For Americans Abroad, Taxes Just Got More Complicated” by David Jolly agrees. Here is an excerpt:   As income tax filing deadline rolls around, spare a thought for the millions of Americans overseas who have been singled out by Congress for special treatment, with a new form that will add to the hassle of tax time for many and, critics say, set up the unwary for penalties.

“It’s a monstrosity,” Steven R. Horton, whose tax practice in Paris advises American expatriates, said of the new demand from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service: Form 8938, the Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets. “It compels every taxpayer to try to find a way that they’re guilty of some kind of omission.”

The new requirement comes courtesy of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, or Fatca, an effort to crack down on offshore tax evasion by U.S. citizens.

The new form requires taxpayers to provide detailed information on their overseas financial accounts, including income derived from them. The penalties for failing to file start at $10,000. Significantly, tax experts warn, filers are subject to major penalties for underreporting — and even where innocent errors are made, they say, it will be up to the taxpayer to convince the I.R.S. examiner of their innocence. The statute of limitations does not expire until after a corrected form is filed.

Proponents say Fatca will bring the U.S. Treasury huge sums each year once the I.R.S. is able to compare individual tax data with reports from foreign financial institutions.

In the United States, financial institutions furnish taxpayers’ account information directly to the I.R.S. Under Fatca, filers overseas have in effect been commanded by Congress to do that themselves, turning over every bit of financial information to the government, something that has never been required before.

Asked how long it would take the average filer to complete the Fatca form, Mr. Ruchelman laughed. “Forever,” he said.

Mr. Horton, who has already helped a few clients fill out Form 8938, said that for most individual filers, “even if we’re talking about a modest set of accounts, it’s going to take a full Saturday to do it.”

And that’s just the new form.

Alone among the citizens of the developed world, Americans have the same tax-filing and tax-payment responsibilities whether or not they reside in the United States. American expatriates still have to file the annual Form 1040, and all the documentation that goes with it — even though most already pay taxes in their countries of residence. (The burden of taxation is softened by a $92,900 exclusion that allows many expatriates to avoid any U.S. liability.)

Expatriates don’t have the same clout in Washington, and beginning this year a single American residing overseas with financial assets of more than $200,000 on Dec. 31, or $300,000 at any point during 2011, must file Form 8938; for a married couple filing jointly, the thresholds are $400,000 and $600,000. (For U.S. residents with accounts overseas, the thresholds are much lower.) Homes are generally outside the remit of the law, pensions and deferred compensation are not.

Not even the I.R.S. is certain how many of the estimated four million to six million Americans living abroad will be affected, but the dollar doesn’t go as far as it once did. Tax experts say far more than just the storied “one percent” will be affected. Failure to file Form 8938 exposes a taxpayer to hefty fines — $10,000 if they do not file within 90 days of I.R.S. notification. That is in addition to FBAR penalties ranging from $500 to 50 percent of the value of the accounts in question.

Some have wondered why U.S. expatriates should have to file both the FBAR and the Fatca, as they gather essentially the same information, though — confusingly — with different language. Why not just one form?

The information gathered by FBAR, it happens, is used by the U.S. Treasury in its efforts under the Banking Secrecy Act to identify crimes like money laundering and terrorist financing. But that information is not shared with the I.R.S. When Congress decided the I.R.S. should have the tools to find foreign accounts and impose penalties in the audit process, it simply ordained that Americans fill out another form: Form 8938.

International tax experts worry that even accidental discrepancies on the new form will expose filers to big penalties. And if examiners do end up comparing information on the FBAR and Fatca forms, which have different filing deadlines and are sent to different offices, they say, it could open the door to more trouble. “It’s going to be a mass of confusion, at least for the first year,” said Edward Tanenbaum, an international tax lawyer at Alston & Bird in New York.

I was having to work hard to find a silver living in this new regulation.  “Maybe it will outrage the public enough to finally put their foot down”, I thought.   Naah, I doubt this will happen since so few Americans have assets abroad… even fewer live abroad and even fewer who do live abroad,actually vote.

Excessive government spending… pork barrel and over 5,000 pages of tax code that make US taxation unequal are the problem, not Americans hiding money abroad.

I was fiddling with these thoughts when a reader when a reader sent a response  to Chapter III of this government intrusion report about coyotes.  She wrote:  When there are that many coyotes around, there is one message you should be receiving.  Get a donkey.  They won’t come around to kill cats, dogs or even horses when there is a donkey around.   All coyotes know that donkeys stomp coyotes and will stomp them to death and the coyotes will just move on to somewhere else where there are no donkeys.  And then the donkey has a story to tell you – about being little but powerful, about projecting image, about being free within boundaries and about responsibilities and relationships.  Wishing you and Merri a wonderful day in the Garden!  Kind regards

That supplied the answer to this government intrusion. Get a really good tax preparer and work with them to learn how to accurately fill in the 8938.  The silver lining in this… if you are like me is that it forces me to be better organized in my accounts.  We may be small… but we can when dealing with the IRS beth powerful by simply being properly prepared.  This allows us to be free within the boundaries imposed on us as US citizens.  The IRS hates nothing more than to waste its time with a well prepared tax payer and right now the IRS is pinched.  Having accounts in order means that they usually leave those alone.

That can provide many benefits.  In fact I had been working on this myself and have made an agreement with a tax preparer to refer him to readers (who request) if he will learn all the forms required… work with banks overseas to make sure accounts are coordinated and give readers a good price.

This terrible regulation can force us to be better and this makes the IRS even more overworked and less effective. This means that those who adapt and prepare our tax forms better may be bothered even less.

An excerpt from the article at AccountingToday.com  entitled “The IRS’s burden-Taxypayer advocate sees a threat in the increased IRS workload” by Roger Russell says:   National Taxpayer Advocate Nina E. Olson’s annual report to Congress highlighted the combination of an expanding IRS workload and declining resources as the most serious problem facing taxpayers and recommended that Congress enact a comprehensive Taxpayer Bill of Rights.  “The overriding challenge facing the IRS is that its workload has grown significantly in recent years, while its funding is being cut,” Olson said in releasing the report. “This is causing the IRS to resort to shortcuts that undermine fundamental taxpayer rights and harm taxpayers – and at the same time reduces the IRS’s ability to deliver on its core mission of raising revenue.”

Perhaps the 8938 will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back and leads to true tax reform… now wouldn’t that be a platinum lining to this dark cloud of government intrusion?  I sincerely hope this happens… but until it does… I’ll be using my extra accounting to help my business as I comply with even more red tape.  I’m going proactive and working aggressively with my tax preparer to assure that he knows what to do so he can help me and readers.

Subscribers of our multi currency report and Ecuador Living Club can get in touch with our tax preparer to learn more about the 8938.  He’s straight thinking, clear talking and not expensive…a man I trust and admire.

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Join an Ecuador real estate tour.  According to the NYT article the 8938  does not apply to homes overseas.

 Government Intrusion I

Government Intrusion II

For Americans Abroad, Taxes Just Got More Complicated

Retire With the Coyote Symbol – Government Intrusion III

Government Intrusion III

The essence of the coyote is interesting and we can gain from it but NOT just because these wily carnivores are smart.

Good friends from B.C., Dennis and Nicki Goff, visited us not long ago. Dennis is a really good photographer… an incredible eye.

At sunset he saw more than this dead old tree in our back yard.   He saw “Wiley Coyote”.

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Photo by Dennis Goff.

Here’s an idea how we can use reflection on the coyote’s essence and this totem to retire from the rat race early.

Last Sunday morning I headed into the wild to take some wildlife photos.

I am lucky to have a lot of land around me. Our home in Florida is very close to the Ocala National Forest.  At 383,000 acres this is the largest contiguous scrub forest in the USA.

Up at three… and after a coffee I’m on the road by 3:30 to get into place before the sun’s up.

Our Super Thinking courses are based on learning to master BWI (Brain Wave Integration) so all the frequencies (Beta, Alpha, Theta and Delta) work together.  Talk about BWI!  Driving alone in the dark is one of the best ways to put your whole brain to work.

There was a wonderful quarter moon and…

quatermoon tags:

riding through the National Forest… there was nothing but me… the

darkmoon tags:20

headlights, an empty highway ahead lullabyed with a gentle hum of asphalt.

I hurdled into the dark.  My mind wandered reflecting on coyotes.

Shortly after the Goff’s, visit the coyotes started really howling here… at night and even in the day.  Our hound has been going bananas at the sound.

In fact there are so many coyotes in the county that they are killing cats, dogs… they even trapped and killed a small horse in its barn.

We have a pack of them living in the woods not to far from our house so we watch our hound carefully.  One thing we have learned over the years that these hounds are not allowed to go outdoors at night (both here in Central Florida and the Blue Ridge) except with us and they are on our leash!

The coyotes let loose with their yelping as I headed into the darkness of early morn so I was reflecting on the spirit of the coyote as I drove through the darkness of pre dawn.

coyote tags:

Coyote photographed in Lake County by Michael Libbe photography. See more below.

Actually I was reflecting on reflecting.

Recently I began a report on government intrusion.  This report is about new technology and how governments might use it.   I was thinking about… “How do we get ahead of the curve?”  Most readers tremble at what governments might be able to do with new inventions.   They have so much concern that they stop thinking about the positive ways governments can use inventions.  Even more important if we aren’t careful, we forget to focus on how these advancing innovations can benefit them in the private sector.

See Government Intrusion I

Government Intrusion II

Evolution is all about thrust and counter thrust.  We cannot stop evolution but we can understand and gain its advantages.

In other words, I was sort of thinking “bring it on” and I’ll try to filter out and or protect against the bad and take the slices of advancement that bring gain.

One way I try and do this is to think beyond the box. I try to escape the tyranny of reason.

One way I use to do this is to look for and reflect on omens. My wandering thoughts along the darkened road were about reflections on “Animal Speak”.  This is a really great way to get our thoughts… so shaped by TV’s Talking Heads, daily newspapers, weekly magazines and mainstream websites.  Omens are so apparently random that they force us out of the box.  Isn’t that lack of logic… this total disorder from the social norm the perfect brainstorming bait?

Upon my return I compared my thinking about government intrusion with an article entitled “Coyote, Power Animal, Symbol of Wisdom, Family Orientation, Illumination”  by Ina Woolcott at shamanicjourney.com (linked below). Here is an excerpt:   Coyote’s medicine includes understanding that all things are sacred and that yet nothing is sacred,

They give one the ability to laugh at one’s own mistakes, placing the North Star, shape-shifting, teaching balance between risk and safety, trickster, devilment, cunning, wisdom, folly.

They are known as the great one and the foolish one – they don’t consciously try and trick us, rather they reflect back to us our own capacity for being clever and stupidity.

When we are being too serious about life, Coyote may appear to teach us to laugh at ourselves and life’s ironies.  They also remind us that whatever we do to others will be done to us. You get back what you give out.

The Coyote teaches how wisdom and folly go together. In others mistakes we see our own foolishness and can learn from their mistakes.

The coyote’s energy is linked to simplicity and trust, spurring renewed innocence and a childlike wisdom in the world.

Although they prefer open grassland and thinly wooded brush, they are able to adapt to almost any environment. This means that they have been able to survive and flourish, growing in numbers – in spite of humans interference who for a long time have been trying to wipe out coyotes by trapping, shooting or poisoning them.

If coyote enters your life, you must look at something you have been avoiding. They are mirrors for the lessons we must learn so we are able to walk a good sacred road. The mirror will be held up incessantly until we finally get the picture.

If you are stuck in a rut, call on coyote as an ally for negotiation. Or be grateful that he showed you a trap that you are caught in, or a way that you are fooling yourself. Powerful teachers when it comes to relationships coyotes are, as it is when we are in a relationship that we often fool ourselves the most. Coyote is not out to get us, but to teach us, whether we are willing students or not.

When you are thinking about government intrusion… keep it simple… learn from the foolishness of those in the government who try to trick us and eliminate that same foolishness from our own lives!  Let’s adapt to the environment.  Let’s not ignore, but take advantage of the cleverness that we see in the foolish ones and most of all remember that this is life.  We can follow it with childish enthusiasm… and we don’t need to take it too seriously …and I always like to remember that what we get back is what we give out.

This seems pretty abstract… looking at business, investing and the problems of staying ahead of changes created by technology, but there the native American totem was based on a very natural logic.  Those who lived these lands realize that the symbolism of every act is what counts.  These lessons we can learn from the coyote are less about the canine. We gain from the underlying symbolism they represent as a reflection of nature.

That was what was beautifully revealed in Dennis’ photo a totem pole – carved by the forces of nature to guide our thoughts naturally past the restrictions of the social normal to Beyond Logic.  The ancients had figured out that when our brain waves integrate, we gain added power in all our actions and thoughts.

coyote tags:

These are powerful lessons about government intrusion from the spirit of the coyote.  They can help us be better and retire from the rat race at any age and at any time!


Our Super Thinking courses help learn how to let the mind wander in powerful ways!

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Coyote Totem Description

See Coyotes in Lake County at michaellibbephotography.com’s site


Government Intrusion I

This is the beginning of a report on government intrusion in the affairs of mankind.

To begin let me introduce one of my less known personas.  If you have known me for long… I am Gary Scott but in a tighter knit community I am “Papa Socks”.  Our granddaughter, Sequoia, coined the name when she was just beginning to speak. “Papa Scott” ascended to “Papa Socks”. Either it was easier to say or she knew socks better than scots and the name stuck.  It is in my roll as papa socks that these thoughts on government intrusion began.

Having a global view is wonderful… filled with personal growth, fulfilling experiences and expanded horizons. The downside is that this can be hard on the unity of the family. In my case our children are spread around the world at times on three continents separated by vast time zones. At times we  have had to go years without being together.

So these last couple of months have been an extra delight for Merri and me.


We began an extended family time with our daughter,  Cinda, and her husband David Cross.   Then


our son, Jake and daughter Cheri and grandson, Garren, came to be with us at our Florida home.

As they departed our daughter, Francesca, arrived from London with her husband, Sam, and our newest grand baby, Leo.


Then my sister Sandra (left), and mom arrived. Here we are Sandra, mom, Merri, Leo, Fran and Papa Socks.

Finally our daughter, Eleanor, and her husband, Ben, arrived from London with our new grandaughter, Matilda.


This is when the government intrusion first hit.  Mom is about to turn 90 and on her 80th she decided to quit traveling.  Nothing has been able to coax her out of Oregon until two new great grandchildren brought new temptation which I played to its fullest.  On her departure from Portland International, though we had been informed the rules had changed… TSA made her leave her wheel chair and gave her a thorough body search.  I thought this was a bit intrusive.


Well done TSA… I am so glad you kept the world safe from my mom. She looks pretty risky.

Let me be clear. I am all for good airport safety.  Our three youngest children, lived with their British mum and went to school in England.  We always flew them back and forth on Pan Am.   They were scheduled on Pan Am flight 103 December 22, 1988 one day after the Lockerbie disaster.   That taught me such a lesson about fate and the abundance we enjoy.  Had I battled to have one more day with the kids.  Had the mom wanted to have a tea party or attend some event one day sooner… had their school let them out one day early… how life would have changed… as it did for so many.  What blessings we have and how hard it is to understand and determine why. Sometimes I get survival guilt just thinking about this.  So when it comes to good airport and airplane safety, I am all for it.

There is a great book about this by the way entitled SKYGODS. More on SKYGODS in a later chapter of this report.  I recommend you read it.

Yet where does common sense come in and where does efficiency start?  TSA agents busily frisking an 89 year old might miss something somewhere else of importance.

Where does government intrusion stop being a good thing and when does it outweigh the benefits?

Yet I have not reached the point that determined me to wrote this report.  That point came from my new camera a V-Lux 30.

Let me hasten to add that I am not a good photographer by inclination.  I take a lot of photos and have learned a little  but before this website began… cameras and me… oil and water.  I’ll skip the story about taking all the photos for a wedding once and when no photos turned out.

I stared clicking away (I have tens of thousands of photos at my Flickr account) with a little battered after time Sony point & shoot until I learned when floating down the Oklawaha River in a kayak it is best to keep your camera in a water tight bag.

garren hall

Photo of my grandson Garren I took with the Sony before I tipped my kayak. Fortunately the memory card was not water soluble.

This incident led me to a Canon point and shoot… a bit better than the Sony but still at the bottom of the rung as far as cameras go.  My cameras by the way have to be small because a photo from a not so great camera is better than no photo at all and I would never lug a big camera around.

Merri knew I needed something better and told Santa who left my Leica under the Christmas Tree.   The Leica V-Lux 30 is a bit larger than the Sony or Canon I had but still small enough to stuff in my pocket and it has three advantages I have figured out use, a better lens… the ability to shoot multiple shots quickly and has a 21X telephoto lens great for getting a full moon or being sneaky with a shot.

There is one feature I had not figured out which finally leads me to the intrusion story.

While the children and grand kids were here one of our trips was to the Lakeside Inn and the Lake Dora boat cruise. This is a wonderful trip into a beautiful part of the world.


Lake Dora at Lakeside Inn.

I was busily snapping photos of Granddaughter, Matilda.

matilda-scott tas:

Idyllic warm sun… cool shadows… gentle breeze, surrounded by four generations… perfect… nothing could intrude… until advertisements for the Mt. Dora Trolly started appearing on the screen of my camera!

The Leica has a GPS and in fiddling with the dials I must have turned it on.  Someone (via a variety of programs and algorithms) had figured out who I was and where I was and was sending me commercial advertisements though my camera!

That incident really set me thinking.  Of course I could turn the GPS off.  Of course this was commercial intrusion and not government.   This was a small incident but huge in the realization how far we have become dependent on technology that eradicates our privacy and allows intrusion in our lives.

Since the 1970s, my books and reports have looked at how to become independent… global and how to protect assets.  Yet all this is changing.

Here is why.

The basis of  independence in the 1970s was being multi nations… to live in one country… bank in a second with a corporation in a third and an office in a fourth.

This would still be effective approach except governments have now learned a new tactic.  They do not regulate the person… they regulate the medium.

Because governments  did not like bank privacy, they did not create anti bank privacy laws that regulated the public. Instead they created “know your customer” and reporting laws on the banks.

Governments globally took control of the banking system so their intrusion could even go to national levels.

A March 2012 Reuters.com article entitled “Payments system SWIFT to expel Iranian banks Saturday” shows how this works when it says:   BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The world’s biggest electronic payment system on Saturday will cut off Iranian banks blacklisted by the European Union in an attempt to further strangle Tehran’s ability to finance a nuclear program.

Belgium-based SWIFT, which facilitates the bulk of global cross-border payments, said it would disconnect designated Iranian financial firms from its messaging system on Saturday at 1600 GMT after European regulators ordered the company to do so.

“The EU decision forces SWIFT to take action,” SWIFT Chief Executive Lazaro Campos said in a statement on Thursday. “Disconnecting banks is an extraordinary and unprecedented step for SWIFT. It is a direct result of international and multilateral action to intensify financial sanctions against Iran.”

SWIFT, or Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, has been described as the glue of the global banking system, handling daily payments estimated at more than $6 trillion.

Expelling the designated Iranian banks from SWIFT will shut down a major avenue through which Tehran does business with the rest of the world. The West hopes that will pressure Iran into curbing its nuclear program.

“The joint action of the U.S. and EU sends a strong message to Iran that we are serious about imposing punishing sanctions,” said U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, a Democrat who pushed to make the expulsion of banks from SWIFT part of pending U.S. sanctions legislation.

In this case the government’s intrusion has the ability to deadlock an entire nation.  Please note by the way that this is NOT the US bank clearing system. This problem has long gone beyond just the USA and is global.

The way these events sneak up on us is that their first time around… they seem very logical.  Had TSA body-searched my 89 year old mom in a wheel chair after an airplane bombing… this would seem to really make sense.  To use the monetary clearing system to stifle Iran’s nuclear ambitions… we can understand.

Once the intrusion has been accepted in this big way… the insidious nature begins… petty… frustrating at its least, even dangerous and malevolent.

For example after I created the Pension Protection Workshop I received this letter from one of our bankers abroad.

Hi Gary,  Yesterday the largest Danish Sunday paper ran a front page about how the US since 9-11 has tightened the net when it comes to money transfers.

A Dane has for years had a small company selling brandies from around the world and cigars from The Dominique Republic and Cuba. His cigar supplier closed down and he established a new relationship with a German importer of Cuban cigars. In October he bought Cigars totaling USD 24,000 from the supplier. He wire transferred the dollars to the seller but the transfer was intercepted in the US by the US bank. The US finance ministry has since then confiscated the funds and told the buyer of the cigars that his funds are confiscated. The reason is that the US has a trade embargo against Cuba and even though the trade did not involve the US or any US persons the funds were confiscated.

This may just be one of many incidents but it made it to the front page yesterday and all involved parties are naturally stunned that the US can impose its Cuba trade embargo on Sovereign states not having such an embargo and confiscate funds in a deal between a Danish and German company.

FATCA, supervision of money transfers, trade embargos, confiscation of funds not involving US entities or persons just wonder what will be next!  Kind regards

This petty intrusion seems so wrong as to be unimaginable. This is so wasteful… create such ill will and leads to three questions:

Question #1: Why would the US government grab a German’s money… sent to a Dane over an embargo (Cuba) that is nearly through?

A recent New York Times article said:  ALWAYS wanted to visit Cuba? Well now you can — legally.

Thanks to policy changes by President Obama earlier this year designed to encourage more contact between Americans and citizens of the Communist-ruled island, the Treasury Department is once again granting so-called “people-to-people” licenses, which greatly expand travel opportunities for Cuba-bound visitors.

An ABC News article wrote:  To visit Havana. Nowadays, you can fly there by charter — that is, if you have close relatives there; if you agree to visit only once every three years; and if you cap your spending at $50 a day. Yes, the Cold War against Cuba continues.

But wait. Congress is working on a thaw — and has voted to ease restrictions for families. Some believe that’ll eventually mean the rest of us will be able to fly into José Marti International as tourists — maybe even later this year. Rep. Bill Delahunt, D-Mass., described the four-decades-old policy of isolating the communist nation as “such a failed policy [that] it deserves a burial.”

The loss of goodwill in Europe for the average American is huge and the bureaucratic fallout will far outweigh $24,000. In other words, you and I as tax payers are forced to finance a process that hurts us.

That’s terrible but is the least of the worst because the only logical conclusion I can reach is that this seizure was just a test to see how effective the Fed’s control over money really is!  However, it could be that this action was political and taken due to the upcoming Presidential election in the USA.

The Cuban exiles still have a powerful political machine.  Could this terrible precedent be created just to pander to that group?

Or the US government could be testing its ability to lock down the wealth of money belonging to anyone… anywhere…. anytime… in our pensions… in our bank accounts… wherever in the world.

If so this is wild.  This use of the international interbank system against nationals of other nations will have angered the other growing and important economies Japan, Germany, Brazil, Russia, India, and China.  They have been looking at alternative currencies and how  to get around using the U.S. dollar already. This will accelerate this process and hurt the greenback in the processs.

There are more questions.

Question #2: How do they know that the money was intended for Cuban cigars?

The sad answer is that US has tracked payments through the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Transactions (SWIFT) since 9-11.  In 2010 the US did a deal with the EU where the EU allowed the US to track all SWIFT payments through the European Police entity, Europol.  Whenever anyone transfers money by wire they now have to explain the purpose of the transaction and this gives big brother the opportunity to watch everything. This seizure shows that the government really is watching to have out of millions of daily transfers to have picked up on this one deal.

How petty can they get?  Could they for example track photos from my camera or yours and decide if they should be shared or not?  That’s pretty petty but I think so and who knows what technocrat might think that you or my photos are more offensive (or politically incorrect) than Cuban cigars?

Question #3: What can we do about these intrusions?

Since the 1970s our business has focused on how to earn globally and be a multi national investor. Our Mantra has been to have a Six Point Command Posture.

Live in One Country
Bank in a Second Country
Hold Asset in a Third Country
Use an Office in a Fourth Country
With a Company in a Fifth Country
Earn in a Sixth Country

We have helped tens of thousands of our readers gain freedom and to escape the tyranny of the establishment through international investing and business and invite you to learn more about how we can help you gain such freedom in the process of doing what you love as well.

As mentioned… this is no longer enough so we have added three ways to assist you further:

#1: Our report on multi currency investing.

#2: Our online courses on how to live and earn globally as a self publisher.

#3: Our writer’s camp on how to live and earn globally.

To help you get a better feel of what we offer, I am attaching an MP3 recording of the the first session of our February 2012 International Investing & Business seminar conducted in Mt. Dora, Florida and want to make this special offer. (The file is large – to save the file you may right-click and save to your computer or if on a Mac, Ctrl-click)

The entire seminar is normally available on MP3 for $299.  I want to give it to you free.

Order any of the three programs above and I’ll include the entire seminar on MP3. You save $299.

Order our pension protection workshop ($49) here.


Our July 2012 writers camp is filled. See two new dates for June and September.

Read  New York Times article on Ceasing on travel to Cuba

ABC News article on visiting Cuba

Reuters article Payments system SWIFT to expel Iranian banks Saturday