Quality of Life

Genius

Why Genius Is Sacred

Posted by | Human Evolution, Quality of Life, Writing | 4 Comments

Corner of Teak and Milbury. The girl behind the cash register at McDonald’s is 17 years old and working a summer job to save up money for college. She works the night shift and in her spare time she works out math equations. Specifically, trigonometry. She is what society would consider a genius level mathematician, quietly working away on her passion in secret.

Given another year, she would earn a full ride to Harvard based on a theory she presents in her final year of high school, which would in turn allow her to go on to become one of the world’s leading physicists. At the age of 35 she would create a break-through in quantum physics, leading to the first grav-lift car that would become commercially available to the public, leading to the eventual eradication of highways and the use of asphalt and other chemicals that are toxic to the environment and an eventual Nobel prize.

Instead, she gets knocked up by some meth-head gang-banger and squirts out a baby before she is 18. She gets tatted up, starts smoking meth, and ends up having two more children with three other men before she is 25. Rather than a life of pursuing her passion to achieve the highest levels of destiny, she becomes relegated to a life of drug addiction and is in and out of jail over the years before finally dying of an overdose at the age of 35.

Is it her fault for not achieving her destiny and pursuing her genius to its maximum potential, or is it the fault of society for not providing an environment in which she could thrive in her chosen element?

The Conundrum

I love Benjamin Franklin’s quote about “He who is good at making excuses is rarely good for anything else”. The vast majority of people will blame their lack of success on everything and everyone but themselves. It’s the economy. The foreigners. The illegal immigration. The war in Iraq. Taxes. The cost of living. It’s never their own fault for working a shitty job and making a shit wage and living a life of servitude. It’s someone else’s fault.

But at what point do we take a look at the burden Western society has put upon people with their mandatory credit addiction, mandatory slave wages, mandatory GMO modified food and mandatory third-world living conditions and lay the blame at the feet of the system? Or do we lay the blame solely on the individual for not taking the opportunities presented to them by life and fate?

If you look at the girl in the above scenario, I’m talking hypotheticals. But the reality isn’t that far from the truth. We all know someone who is a creative genius in their own right who is stuck in a dead-end job working for no money trying to make ends meet just to put food on the table and rather than pursuing their dreams they are working a job they hate for a wage that doesn’t even provide them with enough money to live…all so they can “get by”.

Fuck that. I want to live in a world where creative genius is sacred. Where society puts an emphasis on creativity and allowing people to pursue their true calling. Where mathematicians can go on to create things that benefit humanity as a whole rather than wind up knocked up and cracked out because society forced them into a certain path rather than provided them the opportunity to thrive.

The Reality

Governments don’t want creative thinkers. They want workers. People who are just smart enough to run the machines and keep the system functioning, but  not intelligent enough to think for themselves. Smart people are dangerous. They are the ones who tell their fellow man to rise up, cast off the chains and take their destiny into their own hands. Fuck control. Fuck nationalism and your pledge of allegiance. Fuck 8 hour work shifts and 2 weeks of paid vacation and mandatory military service.

Killing Creativity

Free-thinking people are the bane of governments and organized society. If everyone is allowed to think for themselves, revolutions start. People rise up. Rather than be wage slaves, they cast off their chains and move abroad. They learn other languages, appreciate other cultures, live in other countries, and spend their money everywhere but on the home turf.

Smart people are the ones who change the world. They challenge authority, they speak for themselves, they constantly strive to achieve something greater, something for the benefit of all rather than the benefit of a few, and they are continually looking for ways to improve. Not just upon themselves, but the human race as a whole.

Smart people don’t believe in war. They believe in peace, love and understanding. Equality for all. Man, woman, black, brown, white, Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Atheist, Agnostic, Lutheran, Catholic…it doesn’t matter. Smart people want to live in a world where creativity is put above everything else, where we can use our collective consciousness to pursue the betterment of all mankind and find a way to live harmoniously together without an addiction to war and oil and raping of the planet around us.

Living In Utopia

From my own personal viewpoint, I think one of the greatest aspects of unplugging from the system, learning other languages, moving abroad and living in other cultures and studying my passions and following my dreams has been simply this: I have been allowed to achieve my own greatness. Absolute freedom, both creatively and financially. I have no debt and I can do what I want, when I want.

But not just that. I can pursue my passions in an environment where creativity is allowed to thrive. Where I’m not burdened by debt, by a 40 hour a week job, by wage slavery and credit and GMO modified foods that force me into sickness and obesity.

As Ken Robinson stated in his 2006 TED presentation, everyone has within them the gem of creativity. A tiny bud of genius, waiting to flower. All it needs is a little bit of watering, some cultivation, and it will grow from there into a future that none of us can comprehend…but only if it is allowed the chance to flourish creatively.

When you look at a genius child, most people will think to themselves, “Oh my…he/she is exceptionally gifted”. But are they really that gifted? I don’t think so. Rather, I know for a fact that each and every one of us, each and every single person on the planet, has that same spark of genius inside of them. We are, after all, the universe experience itself. Stardust, made physical. And within each of us lies infinite possibilities if only we are given the opportunity to pursue those passions which eventually turn into greatness.

Creativity is as important as literacy, and should be given the same level of focus in schools and in society. If a person is a gifted and talented artist, put them in a position where they can pursue their gift. Don’t force them into a position of servitude where they are working at McDonald’s while pursuing a worthless degree in business administration because “that’s the only way you will get a job”.

Creativity is something to be cherished, something to be nurtured, and we need to create that nurturing environment for the betterment of humanity. Musicians should be allowed to thrive in an environment where they write music. Painters an environment to paint. Dancers an environment to dance.

96% of college degrees have been proven to be completely worthless (just ask law students in Boston working for less than minimum wage, or the millions who have had their lives ruined by student debt), so why are we still using them as the benchmark for “the way of doing things?

As Robinson points out, we are educating children out of creativity. We are teaching them to fear being creative, to fear being different, and by the time most people reach adulthood they are branded forever as wage slaves, destined to a life of mediocrity and an early grave without ever achieving anything of value in their life…simply because they are too afraid to do anything other than be a servant.

The Bottom Line

Genius is sacred. Creativity is sacred. It should be nurtured, cultivated, allowed to flourish and grow into something great that will benefit all of humanity, rather than only a select few. But in order to get to that point we have to create an environment where genius is allowed to thrive. Currently, this does not exist except for those of us who have made the conscious decision to break free of the chains of “civilized” society and pursue global careers as digital nomads.

Is it our responsibility to help create an environment to foster creativity? I, for one, think that it is. I think that we owe it to ourselves as a species to teach people to unplug from The Matrix, to stop letting government-funded teachers tell them how and what to think, to stop pledging allegiance to a flag, to stop believing in “god and country”, to stop believing in imaginary boundaries drawn on maps by a select group of people who want to control everyone else.

I believe it is our responsibility to create a better world for future generations. A world where creativity is cherished, where wage slavery is abolished and war is a thing of the past, where humanity can focus as a whole on the betterment of all as opposed to only the betterment of a few and single group of countries (i.e. The West). A world where that 17 year old girl is allowed to grow up and become the mathematician she was born to be, rather than the meth addict that society forced her to become due to broken promises and corruption.

What are your thoughts on creativity and society? Do you believe it is the responsibility of the individual to cultivate creativity, or the responsibility of society to provide an environment where creativity can thrive?

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Da Vinci

Keep It Simple, Stupid: A Study On Maxinomics

Posted by | Blogging, Passive Income, Quality of Life, Social Media, Writing | No Comments

It starts off small. 5 ways to save money for travel. Then someone else comes along and does 7 ways to save money for travel. Then it’s 10. Then 15. Then 25. Then 50. Then 150. Then 200. Then 500. Every subsequent blogger trying to outdo the last, repeating, rehashing and reposting the same, tired old information that can be found in a hundred other blog posts by a hundred other bloggers. An endless cycle of trying to outdo those who came before so that people will follow your blog and not the competition.

Somewhere in the middle, the message is lost in the hustle to outdo the competition. In the rush to offer the biggest, the best or the most numerous, the actual information is left by the wayside.

The Greedy Bastard Syndrome

The Greedy Bastard Syndrome is a disease that affects those who are addicted to consumption and physical possessions. They see the world through the capitalist point of view: me first, everyone else second. They are the type of individuals who are only interested in one thing: being on top of the totem pole.

As a result of this sickness, Greedy Bastards are pushed to the extremes trying to find ways to outdo the competition, believing that if they do not they will fall to the bottom of the heap, forgotten and irrelevant. Quality is not as important as staying ahead of the pack. Quantity is the name of the game, because if you can’t outdo your competition you aren’t doing it right.

As more and more people turn to blogging for a living, they fall back on the old ways of doing things. Unfortunately, old habits are not always the best habits. Rehashing the old and doing things the same way as everyone else is the fastest and most sure-fired way to find yourself being nothing more than another in a long list of monkeys with keyboards, banging out letters as fast as they can without any clear purpose or direction, all so they can stay on top of the heap.

A top 10 list? Screw that…I’m gonna write a top 50 list. Then someone comes along and does a top 75. Then you come back and do a top 150. The cycle continues. Me first, everyone else second. 

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication

Whether you are talking about Ockham’s Razor (among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected), or Antoine de Saint Exupéry’s statement that, “perfection is reached not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away”, it all boils down to less is more.

The tighter the niche, the more focused the results, the higher the quality of the information.

Simplicity

The best way to become an authority in your niche is to keep it simple, direct, to the point and as tightly focused as possible. Be the expert on that topic, and write about it with such detail that you become the ultimate source when people are looking for information regarding your niche. No one wants to read a watered down version of something: they want to read an article written by someone who is speaking with the voice of authority.

Too often in today’s blogging world people are so focused on maxinomics and presenting the biggest, loudest, most obnoxious version of something as a means of garnishing attention that they have completely lost the original intent. Keep it simple, stupid. Make it so refined, so simplistic in its design, that it is perfect in its very simplicity.

Sophistication comes not from maximizing and rehashing a topic fifty different ways so that you can be “larger” and “better” than the competition, but when you strip away all the non-essential bullshit and bring it back to the point where there is nothing more you can strip away. When you reach that point, you have absolute perfection. Ultimate simplicity.

Getting Back to Basics

The first piece of advice I give to students is “write from the soul”. When you strip away all the pretentiousness, the desire to be “just like so and so” and instead write what your heart wants you to write about, you achieve the simplicity that Leonardo was so focused on in his own work over the years.

You don’t have to be like everyone else to make it in this world. In fact, it’s better if you aren’t. If you instead focus on your own unique voice, developing your own unique way of saying things, of shooting photos, of recording videos, of drawing, writing, creating, and keeping things as streamlined, tight, focused and simplistic in nature, your work will shine through all on its own.

But the key is keeping things tight and focused rather than generic. Any monkey with a keyboard can hit letters and eventually make a coherent sentence or two. Your goal is to strip away the non-essential. Take things down to the very core message. Start there and refine the essence until it shines, the diamond in the rough.

Don’t worry about maxinomics. Take your niche and go deep. Find the perfection that Leonardo was talking about. Everything else is extraneous.

What about you? What are your thoughts on maxinomics? Tell us about your success working in niche markets in the comments below; I’ve yet to meet a single soul who focuses on tight niches and doesn’t see an excellent level of success, and it’s always a blessing to read about your success stories.

Looking for ways to refine your niche? Shoot me an email with your questions and I’ll get back to you ASAP. 

Don’t forget to sign up for our free newsletter for several-times-a-week, your-eyes-only travel and entrepreneur tips, plus receive a complimentary copy of our 85-page starter book on location independence and living abroad, 30 Ways in 30 Days.

With over 1,500 copies sold, our flagship 568-page eBook is what started it all. Learn how to travel the world like I do: without a budget, with no plans, funded completely by your website and online ventures.

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Mentors

Find A Mentor – Old School Entrepreneurship

Posted by | Passive Income, Quality of Life, Social Media, Traveling Tips | One Comment

Throughout the ages, there have always been historical presences who stood apart from the rest. Men and women who marked history with their passing. To learn from these individuals is the highest calling, the ultimate way to pave your own path to greatness.

Most geniuses have mentors and coaches to give them perspective, and to provide them with a vast source of first-hand and personal knowledge of a topic, way of thinking, lifestyle and how to be successful at it. Socrates mentored Plato. Plato mentored Aristotle. Aristotle mentored Alexander the Great. Thomas Edison mentored Henry Ford. The list goes on.

The best way, the only way if you are someone who is dedicated to making a difference with your life and being more than just an average monkey in a meat suit, is to find someone higher up on the food chain than you, someone who is successful at what they do, and join them as a mentored soul on your path to enlightenment.

The Old Way

Alexander the Great. Arguably one of the most famous names in our recorded history. Born in 356 BC, Alexander was tutored by Aristotle until he was 16 years of age. By the time he was thirty, he had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world, stretching from the Ionian Sea to theHimalayas. He was undefeated in battle and is still to this day considered one of history’s most successful commanders.

Numerous cultural centers to this day remain major international hotspots for travel, lifestyle and education. He is almost single-handedly considered by historians to be one of the primary drives behind Hellenization, or the spread of Greek language, culture and influence throughout what was previously the Persian Empire. To this day, we still remember his name.

Bill Gates is another example of a modern-day mentored soul, studying under Warren Buffet. Buckminster Fuller mentored Mark Victor Hansen, co-creator of Chicken Soup for the Soul. Jim Rohn mentored Tony Robbins. Tony Robbins has mentored people such as Bill Clinton.

The Masters of Destiny always look to history for examples of how to avoid the mistakes of their forefathers. Great men always find leaders to follow in the footsteps of, and they aren’t afraid to serve at the feet of better men if they want to achieve the same level of greatness.

Alexander The Great

The New Way

Universities and higher education are the biggest lie since organized religion. They are a streamlined and tightly-organized mafia masquerading as education in a system where pieces of paper are given meaning, much in the same way that colored paper is waved around and holds value despite being printed from nothing.

96% of college degrees are absolutely worthless, according to ex-education secretary William Bennet. Nearly half of those who start a four-year college don’t finish, he points out. Of those who did graduate in 2011, half are unemployed or radically underemployed. By his reckoning, only 150 of America’s 3,500 colleges are worth it, and only then for degrees in highly specialized fields such as physics, medical fields and engineering. 

College education is nothing more than a manufactured system of indentured servitude, meant to lure the masses into going $150,000 or more into debt, thus chaining them to a desk job for the majority of their adult lives while they pay off their loans to the state. Or worse yet, forcing them into a situation where they work meaningless jobs just to try and appease the creditors. Such as law students in Boston working for less than federal minimum wage.

The vast majority of university students find their lives over once they finish school.  “Student loans have basically ruined my life,” says Tanya Carter, who graduated from the University of Toledo in 2008. She went to community college for two years before transferring, and attended classes part-time so she could also work. When Carter maxed out on federal loans, she turned to private loans to finish her degree. As a result of all that debt, she writes:“I never see myself owning a home, vehicle, or even getting married.”

The need to delay starting a family because of financial worries was a common concern. Lauren Dollard graduated from Fordham University in 2008 with $157,000 in debt, including interest. “My boyfriend won’t marry me because of my debt,” she says. “He doesn’t want it attached to his name.” She said she would trade her “fancy private school education” in a heartbeat to live “as an independent adult.”

It is a tragic story, one that is born out of ignorance in regards to global options for expats, as well as reliance upon a system that force-feeds school-loans as the “only way to succeed” down the throats of every high-school student in the United States. Each year, the culpable minds of the American youth are brainwashed into believing that the only way they will ever be able to achieve anything in life is to jump through the hoops of the system.

“Go to college,” they tell you. “Don’t worry about the costs. It’s required. If you don’t go to college you’ll never be able to get a job. Don’t worry about the money. We’ll loan it to you. It’s the only way you’ll ever amount to anything. Trust us. It’s the way the system works. You can’t survive in the system unless you do what we tell you. Watch your reality TV and go to sleep. Sign on the dotted line. Let us take care of you.”

Students are told that they have no other options; it’s this way or starve, they are told. Trust us. Don’t worry. We’ll take care of you. Sign here. Four years later, they wake up feeling the cold steel wrapped around their wrists, suddenly realizing they have become prisoners in a jail cell that was being built around them without them even realizing what was going on.

Get Mentored, Or Go Home

You’ll never get personal interaction with a professor who only has you for limited hours per day trying to teach you generic, everyday knowledge that serves you absolutely no purpose in the real world. You’ll never achieve breakthrough success, never meet leaders of your industry, never rub shoulders with the elite of your niche and eventually work your way up and joint venture with those very same leaders by studying a generic series of educational jokes meant to stimulate you into a life of wage slavery.

Mentoring is also one of the only ways to completely eradicate the learning curve associated with college degrees and the mandatory “work experience” you are expected to rack up once you get out of university. Instead of spending 4-6 years breaking your back for minimal wages while “building up experience”, you can instead get on the fast-track to guaranteed success, working hand in hand with someone who can show you the things that absolutely work and absolutely generate profit.

The only way you achieve greatness is to reach out and take with both hands. Own it.

Don’t be afraid to reach out to the person higher up on the food chain than you in your niche and ask them about the possibility of mentoring. Even if they don’t normally teach, most leaders are willing to train others to follow in their footsteps, if only because of the simple fact that it’s nice to pass something on. And you have nothing to lose by sending a simple email and finding out if you could perhaps serve under them and learn first-hand.

But be prepared to pony up, because mentors don’t give away their best information for free, nor should they. While in most cases you won’t fork over 150k in cash as you would for a university degree, you’ll still pay thousands to tens of thousands if you want the focused, one-on-one, long-term coaching from the best of the best. A good mentor program can last months to years and cost anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000 per month. For example, Tony Robbins charges around $5,000 for his 9 day Mastery Program. Gregg Braden charges upwards of $1,500 to $2,000 for three to five day programs.

Guaranteed results don’t come cheap. 

If you don’t have the cash, get creative. The mentors of old, be they Plato, Aristotle, Leonardo and beyond, were always paid well for their time training the next generation of leaders, but not necessarily only in money. If you can’t afford to outright pay a mentor for their time, offer up your time and serve a mentorship as an intern or personal assistant. Many times in the old days the maestros would trade labor and general work in exchange for a student’s time. Someone to do the grunt work like cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, chopping the wood, mending the house, washing clothes.  They were also offered housing in exchange for teaching the next generation of elite. In the modern days it can also include answering emails, phone calls, doing social media and being a personal assistant so that the maestro can do what it is that he does best: create.

Studying under a mentor is the ultimate path to success, and it is the only way to achieve guaranteed greatness. A generic degree from a tenured wage slave with 300,000 USD of debt to his/her name who teaches 500 or more students just like you every single year isn’t going to get you anywhere in life. It’s going to land you in the same boat as the teacher: working for someone else’s  benefit while you struggle to pay off your school loans.

Studying under a mentor who gives you personalized attention, someone who guides you every step of the way, someone who is living free of debt, free of wage slavery, traveling the world, speaking multiple languages, leveraging a global point of view, someone who has truly mastered their own universe…there is no substitute for learning at the feet of A Master where you are given undivided attention and guidance to achieve your own Destiny.

I have personally served two mentorships in my life. The first was to my grandfather, father and uncles, where I grew up as a third generation ceramic tile and natural stone contractor. I was running 10+ man crews by the age of 17, 25+ man crews by the time I was 19, self-employed by the time I was 21 years old, and semi-retired at 28 when I left the United States. Since I’ve been in Mexico I’ve been studying under DJ Vishnu, who has mentored me in alchemy and astrology and led me to the paths of universal awareness I am currently pursuing to great success, both spiritually and in business as well.

Have you served a mentorship? Do you have someone in mind who you would like to study under? What’s holding you back? Leave your comments below!

Don’t forget to sign up for our free newsletter to receive a complimentary copy of our 85-page starter book on location independence and living abroad, 30 Ways in 30 Days.

With over 1,500 copies sold, our flagship 568-page eBook is what started it all. Learn how to travel the world like I do: without a budget, with no plans, funded completely by your website and online ventures.

The Expat GuidebookGet Your Copy Today!

Unplug from The System, cure yourself of The Greedy Bastard Syndrome, tap into your universal potential and create your own reality. Build a brand, travel the world and realize your cosmic consciousness.

Beyond Borders - The Social RevolutionGet Your Copy Today!

Market 23

Whole Foods and Healthy Living Abroad

Posted by | Live Like a Local, Quality of Life, Traveling Tips | 4 Comments

One of the often ignored aspects of pursuing a life abroad as a digital nomad is the ability to explore greater health and wellness through food. While most people are familiar with the traveling aspects of going to a country and living first-hand things that most people only see on vacation for a mere handful of days per year, there are numerous other benefits…such as getting away from the United States and their blatant poisoning of the population through companies such as Monsanto and federally funded genocide.

Last year (2012), the CDC released a report to ABC News. According to its casual estimates nearly 50% of Americans will be classified as obese by the year 2030. Not overweight, not merely a little chubby…but obese. As in so grossly overweight they are toxic to themselves. The current numbers show that 75% of the population are overweight, 35% of them are obese, and only about 5% of people have a genetic reason for being overweight or obese: the rest are simply fat because they want to be, or fat because they don’t know any better. That number continues to rise dramatically every year.

A perfect example of sheep led to the slaughter without even knowing it is the usage of elements such as pink slime, which contains the same ingredients as antifreeze used to cool the engines of cars. You know…the stuff that has a poison label on the side which tells you that if you drink it you will die. The FDA states that meat producers can use up to 15% of this toxic additive in U.S. ground beef without being required by law to tell people that it’s an actual ingredient; they are only required to put it on the label if it goes above 15%. Meanwhile, Canada, the U.K. and the European Union have all banned the substance for use.

(Pink slime made international headlines in March of 2012 when news agencies began reporting on the fact that 70% of the known beef in the United States contained the additive. Anyone who thinks that 70% was the actual number is smoking that propaganda pipe a little too often; 100% is a far more realistic number, because food producers in the U.S. can’t lift a finger without the FDA’s approval, which means they knew the whole time what was going on…and they didn’t do a thing to stop it.)

Then, in more recent times, we have the sweeping legislatures passed allowing GMO monster Monsanto a free and clear slate to modify and experiment with anything they want…free and clear of government control.

Monsanto

Abandoning Ship

As a digital nomad, you can travel to where the food is. And while you might have to pay tens of dollars for “Greek” yogurt and “organic” produce in the United States, you can travel to countries like Bulgaria (home of modern yogurt), Italy, Mexico and beyond and the produce at the local markets is organic by its very nature. It doesn’t need a label because it hasn’t been tainted by the FDA or Monsanto and their chemical tyranny, because most of the farmers are growing food the way it was intended: in the Earth, letting Mother Nature do her job without any aide.

Here’s the facts: the reason Americans are fat isn’t because of their sedentary lifestyle, at least not primarily. A case study mentioned in my Mediterranean Diet and Lifestyle book (there are dozens) shows how around 65% of Americans are regularly going to the gym as of 2012. If that’s the case, why are 75% of the population overweight or obese?

The reason is because it’s 70% diet and only 30% exercise, and you get out what you put in. And the simple fact is that it’s a giant, never-ending cycle of lies and manipulation designed to keep the people sucking down supplements and vitamins and chemicals being sold by pharmaceutical companies (aka the government/FDA/Monsanto) on every level as a means to keep them chemically in check as a fat race of low-energy wave slaves.

Every item on the shelf in the grocery store has been injected with preservatives and sweeteners and chemicals and genetically-modified-gods-know-what which are designed to weaken your body and get you addicted to the smack…which then makes you fat….at which point your doctor recommends supplements to lose weight…or pills to lose weight….and you are right back where you started, paying the FDA to mainline chemicals straight into your system.

Soylent Green.

Meanwhile, the whole foods and natural medicine that the Earth provides for us are forgotten.

Monsanto Ban

Taking The High Road

Look at countries like France, with the French Paradox. Or the Mediterranean region. Or the people living in Colombia, Uruguay and other countries. Their people aren’t fat, they don’t have obesity epidemics, they don’t have an endless cycle of “take this drug to counteract this side effect”. The people in these countries are eating whole foods as they are provided by the Earth around us.

One of the only ways you can escape the deadly cycle yourself is to get away from the system, out of the prison, and escape to a place where you can surround yourself with whole foods that haven’t been tainted by the FDA and their “supposedly” healthy system. Find a country that has banned GMOs, doesn’t allow FDA-approved substances in their country, and bans places like McDonald’s and Coca Cola. Don’t think they exist?

Think again. The vast majority of the planet has banned many of the so-called safe preservatives the FDA allows to continue to be used, and in the last few weeks over 30 countries around the world have banned Monsanto from selling GMO modified seeds in their countries, including one of the major U.S. partners, Japan.

If all of the foods people are eating in the United States, all of which have the FDA-approved label on them, are supposedly so good for you and healthy…why is it that 75% of the population is a greasy, fat, sickly statistic? Why are other countries banning these substances? Why has Bolivia completely banned McDonald’s and Coca Cola from operating within their country’s borders. What do these countries know?

It’s common sense, people. If you want to be healthy, you have to put good things into your body so that you get good things out. And the only way to ensure that you are getting the best quality foods for you and your family is to get away from a controlling government that is pushing poisons down your throat at every opportunity.

Countries like France have strict policies in place regarding the quality of food, with anything other than grass-feed beef banned from being served in restaurants, and the European Union has bans on numerous cancer-causing preservatives and additives which the FDA claims is safe.

Beyond that, take a look at what Hungary just did, literally burning thousands of acres of GMO-modified corn to the ground and banning Monsanto completely from the country. Alongside 30+ other countries (as of this writing) who have taken a stand against the global poisoner and are demanding healthy food only as opposed to genetically modified toxins.

Don’t be a fool. Start living a life of absolute health and wellness today. Live life on your terms, without the interference of governments whose only role is to tax you to death, strip away your human rights and inject you with poison so that they can keep you plugged into the system.

It’s your choice. Make the right one. 

This post originally appeared at The Expat Guidebook blog in 2012. It has been updated to include the ongoing GMO and Monsanto controversies and bans currently raging on the global front.

Don’t forget to sign up for our free newsletter for several-times-a-week, your-eyes-only travel and entrepreneur tips, plus receive a complimentary copy of our 85-page starter book on location independence and living abroad, 30 Ways in 30 Days.

With over 1,500 copies sold, our flagship 568-page eBook is what started it all. Learn how to travel the world like I do: without a budget, with no plans, funded completely by your website and online ventures.

The Expat GuidebookGet Your Copy Today!

Unplug from The System, cure yourself of The Greedy Bastard Syndrome, tap into your universal potential and create your own reality. Build a brand, travel the world and realize your cosmic consciousness.

Beyond Borders - The Social RevolutionGet Your Copy Today!

Illusion of Wealth

Rich Man, Poor Man – The Illusion of Wealth

Posted by | Live Like a Local, Passive Income, Quality of Life, Social Media, Traveling Tips | 15 Comments

Seattle, Washington, U.S.

Meet Bob.

Bob is a 42 year old male, married for 17 years to a beautiful wife named Phyllis. They have two children, a dog and three cats. Phyllis works in a salon as a manicurist where she’s been for the past 9 years, and Bob is a software engineer working for a company in Seattle where he’s been for the past eleven years. He makes $65,000 a year before taxes, and she makes around $40,000 a year before taxes. Together, they have a combined income of just over $100,000 per year.

Bob and Phyllis have a four bedroom home with a front and back yard, and a two car garage. They both have their own vehicles to get them to and from their jobs. They have a 50 inch television, an XBox 360, a Playstation 3, four home PCs (two for themselves, two for the kids),  four smart phones (two for themselves, two for the kids) with data plans, two tablets (one for the kids, one that he and Phyllis share).

From the outside, Bob and Phyllis are living the American Dream. A life of plenty. All the modern amenities and gadgets that a flourishing family should have. And 100 percent of what they “have” is paid for with credits cards and loans.

The house mortgage is $350,000. He still owes $19,000 on a $32,000 car loan. She still owes $4,000 on her $11,000 car loan. They have just over $15,000 of combined credit card debt. She owes $62,000 in school loans, and Bob owes $130,000 for his school loans.

Taxes for the couple are just around 25% per year when combining federal and state taxes. That means they have a bring-home pay of 75,000  a year before taxes. Their mortgage payment is $1,400 per month. Their car payments combined come to $1,000 a month, before insurance.  She pays around $350 a month for her school loans and he pays roughly $600 a month for his. They eat purely organic produce, and their groceries for a family of four cost them around $2,000 a month. Utilities run around $1,000 a month to keep the home air conditioned and heated, along with cable TV and high-speed Internet, water and recycling receptacles for the trash cans.

Already their projected bills per month come to $6,350, or $76,200 a year, which is over a thousand dollars more than their take-home pay. And we haven’t even gotten to the car insurance, gas for the vehicle, costs of clothing for the children, extra-curricular activities for school, Christmas gifts, entertainment costs, vacation costs and beyond, which run between $6,000 to $10,000 per year. In short….Bob and Phyllis are the typical American family, living far beyond their means but maintaining the illusion of wealth through credit management. What they can’t afford to pay with their bring-home salary they make up for with credit cards in order to keep their family “living the life of plenty”.

They have zero net income, and zero net worth. In fact, they are over-extended, and are making anywhere between 10k and 12k less than what they actually need to pay their bills, thus requiring them to use credit and credit cards to make ends meet. Stimulating the economy through continual cycling of never-ending debt.

Meanwhile, In Mexico

Meet Juan.

Juan is a 42 year old male, married for 17 years to a beautiful wife named Maria. They have three children, two dogs and one cat. Maria works as a secretary for a lawyer where she’s been for the past 11 years, and Juan is a software developer for a small company in Mexico City where he’s been for the past 9 years. Juan brings home around $20,000 USD a year before taxes, while Maria brings in around $10,000 a year before taxes. Together, they have a combined income of around $30,000 a year.

Juan  and Maria have a four bedroom home with a front and a back yard, and a single car parking area. They share a vehicle, and he drops her off and picks her up from work on his way back and forth. Sometimes she takes public transportation to get home. They have a 50 inch television, an XBox 360, a laptop for the kids and one for themselves. They each have smart phones, and the kids have burner phones for texting.

Their house is paid for. They bought a single-bedroom place when they were just married at 22 years old for $15,000 USD in a quiet subdivision of Mexico City and over the years added on extra rooms and a second level. They pitched in and bought a car together when they were 32 for $5,000 USD…up until that point they used public transportation to get to work. They worked part-time jobs to put themselves through school, and they don’t have credit card debt because they don’t buy anything they can’t afford to pay cash for.

Taxes for the couple run around 25 percent, leaving them with a take-home pay of around $22,500 per year. Insurance on the car runs around $500 per year. Gas comes to around $800 per year. They eat purely organic produce, cultivated by the farms around the city, and groceries for their family of four cost around $300 per month. Utilities for the home cost around $150 per month for AC/heat, cable TV, high speed Internet, water and gas. Entertainment costs for the year are around $1,300 for movies and events for the kids. They take two vacations a year which cost around $2,500 in total.

Their total cost of living for the year come to around $10,500 USD per year against a take-home pay of $22,500, which means a net profit of $12,000 per year between the two. They own their home, all the remodeling they’ve done to it over the years, their car, the TV, the amenities and have a net worth of around $50,000 USD when factoring in the current value of their home after all the renovations. 

The Conundrum

Most Westerners make the assumption that anyone living in a country beyond their borders is living a life of poverty. This is the illusion of wealth. Because while the vast majority of Westerners living a “life of plenty” with all the “modern necessities” are doing so on credit…people like Juan living in developing countries around the world have been living intelligently, working hard and living within their means, without credit.

Let’s say Bob gets sick and can’t work for six months. What’s going to happen to the house and the vehicles when he can’t make the mortgage payment for four months running, and then the car payments are four months behind, and the school loans haven’t been paid because he’s trying to keep food on the table and the water/electric going for his children and family, so rather than pay the loans he pays the necessities?

Do you think the banks and the creditors are going to pardon him, give him slack because of his circumstances, offer to forgive his debt and give him some more time so he can at least put food on the table for his family? Hell no! Within four months of late payments the bank is going to send a repo man in the middle of the night to take the cars, and then they will send a government-backed repo team to claim all the goods in the home and foreclose on the house to recoup their losses, leaving Bob and his family out on the streets.

All those “things” that Bob and Phyllis think they own, are in fact nothing more than borrowed…and they will spend their entire lives paying for those “things” until they are in their late 60s and early 70s…if they are lucky.

Meanwhile, Juan can take an entire year off work just because. His home, his car and everything he owns is actually, really, physically his. He bought and paid for it, with cash money, without credit. The bank can’t come hunt him down because he owns the title to his home, free and clear. He paid cash money for his car, and thus doesn’t have to worry about the bank coming to repossess it if he gets sick or can’t work for a few months out of the year.

The Illusion

The average Westerner (especially those from the U.S. and the U.K.) have been taught since birth to trust in banks and the credit system since they were old enough to read and write. They have bought into the lie of credit hook, line and sinker. This is blatantly obvious in the simple fact that if you ask any a Westerner about themselves and their job, they proudly list off their associated purchases as a symbol of their wealth…never once mentioning that they actually never purchased these items in the first place. They are instead on loan, via credit.

This is because the average Westerner has been brainwashed into simply ignoring the fact that they are a slave race. They honestly believe that they own their home, because after all they signed the paperwork at the bank for it. It’s “their car”, even when they still have five years’ worth of payments left on it. It’s “their television” even when they paid for it at Christmastime with a credit card. It’s “my vacation” even though it was put on a credit card. They believe that credit is the same thing as physically owning the item in question, and are thus deceived. 

“Welcome to my home” they say when you walk in the door, forgetting the fact that they still have 32 more years of mortgage payments to make and if they miss a couple or are late on more than a few the bank will quickly strip the home from them, leaving them out in the cold without a second thought. “What do you think of my car,” they ask, forgetting that they still have five more years of car payments to make before the car is actually theirs, and if they miss more than a couple the repo man will show up in the night and take their car without any warning.

Credit is a lie. It is the painted jail cell that has been carefully blended into the background so as to remain out of sight, out of mind. It is The Great Deceiver, shrouded in bells and whistles and paint and flashing lights and software and technological advances and promises of being “better than anyone else on the planet”. It is the illusion of wealth, and it has enthralled the once-great countries of The West and trapped them in a downward spiral that is currently being played out in the so-called “global crisis”.

Meanwhile, Juan and others like him are going about their daily business, living in developing countries where the cost of living is a fraction of what it is in The West. Free of the credit system that has dragged the West down into its demise, and free to live far simpler lives.

Mexicans, for example, have more than three times more national holidays than the United States. Italians work half the hours but yet have a take-home pay that is twice the average American….and they traditionally practice the siesta (afternoon nap) in southern regions of the country. So not only do they work half the hours and make twice the money, but they do it while managing to catch an afternoon wink along the way! Colombians have a two to three hour lunch break (traditionally) to break up the work day, and Bulgarians have holidays that literally last for a week, yet 98% of them own their own homes, free and clear of mortgages.

If these countries are supposedly so “backwards” and “inferior” to the West…how is it that their people have zero debt, four times and more the national holidays, half the working hours and afternoon naps to boot?

It’s all about frugality and living within your means. When you know what you really need out of life and how to get it without relying on the government, you embody the very essence of what it means to be a free human being.

Are you living in an illusion?

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