11 Unexpected Ways To Earn Money In The Next Depression

Rich M.
By Rich M. May 8, 2020 08:11

11 Unexpected Ways To Earn Money In The Next Depression

The United States economy is a much more fragile thing than most people realize. Even though it is the most robust economy today, it can be taken down in a moment. Keeping the economy intact is a constant balancing act, like trying to keep any number of balls in the air at one time.

Truth be told, nobody fully understands the economy, not even those who make their living explaining it. That’s mostly because the American economy is too complex, with too many interrelated parts, for anyone to keep track of it all. Financial professionals, who are supposed to understand it, focus on individual companies or their stocks, as well as trends, extrapolating pronouncements about whole sections of the economy from those examples.

Yet, the American economy is the most robust economy in the world, impacting the economies of all other countries. When things go good in the USA, they go good for the world; but when they go bad, it affects the whole world too. We saw that when we were in the 2008/2009 recession.

Now it looks like we may be heading into another depression. Financial gurus have been predicting this for years and now it seems their predictions will come true. If that’s the case, you and I need to be ready to provide for all our family’s needs, even without the benefit of a regular job.

It’s important to note that even in a depression, there will still be an economy, with many people working. The Great Depression of the past century saw a maximum unemployment of 24.9 percent. While that is plenty serious enough, with some people still working, there are still people to buy products and pay for services. It will just be a matter of finding those people and figure out what we can do for them.

As a prepper, you’re already the self-sufficient sort, who has a variety of skills available to you. The question then becomes, what can you do with the skills that you have, in order to make money?

Make the Most of Your Garden

11 Unexpected Ways To Earn Money In The Next DepressionAs a prepper, whether or not you have a homestead, you’re probably one of the few people around who actually has a vegetable garden in their back yard. This skill, which is so central to who we are as preppers, is something that society at large has forgotten how to do.

Gardening to people outside the prepping community usually means growing flowers, not anything they can eat.

During any financial crisis there are shortages. Amongst the most common of these is food. It’s not that food doesn’t exist, it’s that food doesn’t make it from the farms to the store shelves. Food therefore becomes an extremely valuable barter item, which can be traded for other necessities.

Related: The 24 Highest Calorie Vegetables for Your Survival Garden

Convenience Meals

Speaking of food, there are always people who need it. While a depression is hard on the economy and people lose jobs, people have to eat. If there is one sort of business that is likely to be secure in such a time, it is providing food to people.

The key is going to be finding some way of providing food, which is going to be unique enough that people will be willing to pay for it; not the people who are out of work, but those who are still working. Since they will all be working hard, probably working overtime, providing meals that are delivered to their home is enough of a hook, that you should be able to garner some good business.

Another key to making this work is if you can provide some sort of food that is not readily available, especially some sort of unusual ethnic food, which is not commonly available in your area. People will often pay a premium for that, just because it is different.

Of course, you could provide meals for pickup from your home as well, but that would require them coming to your home to pick those meals up. While that might work for some, it isn’t as attractive an offer to others and doesn’t set you apart from services that restaurants offer.

Turn Your Survival Skills Into Money

11 Unexpected Ways To Earn Money In The Next DepressionWith so many people out of work and struggling, people will need to learn new skills, specifically the skills that you know as a survivalist.

All you need, is a venue to work with, preferably one that can also attract the kind of people who need to know what you have to teach.

That means either working with your city’s municipal government or a non-profit organization in your city. While non-profits don’t usually pay all that good, they will appreciate what you have to offer and will probably provide some other benefits to you.

Make and Sell Masks

There’s a good chance that the next depression will come out of the Coronavirus pandemic. People are expecting it to be over soon, allowing them to go back to life as normal. But the reality is, this disease is going to be with us for a long time. Chances are that we’re all going to have to make some lifestyle changes, to keep ourselves well.

One of those changes might very well be that we all need to go around masked on a regular basis. With that being the case and considering how much of a problem masks have been, you could always make masks to sell. As time goes on, expand that out, seeing what other accessories you can make for people.

Auto Repair

11 Unexpected Ways To Earn Money In The Next DepressionDuring a depression or other economic crisis, even the people who are working generally have less disposable money available to them, than at other times.

One way this manifests is in people keeping cars longer than they would keep them in other times. Keeping cars longer means more repairs and more need for people who can make those repairs.

I’ve known a lot of shade tree mechanics through the years, who make a good living under their shade tree. Many people would rather seek out these mechanics, than pay the higher rates that a dealership or repair shop has to charge. Yet even with charging those lower rates, the shade tree mechanic can still make a good living, because their overhead is so low.

Taking this idea a step further, provide your service to them at their home or place of work. Many people don’t have the time to take their car to the shop to be repaired and would love to have their mechanic come to their home. My mechanic does that and I love it.

Repair Broken Appliances & Electronics

Cars aren’t the only thing that people will be wanting to save money on. For years now, we’ve lived in a disposable society, where people are accustomed to throwing things away and replacing them, once they don’t work anymore. But when money is tight, people are more interested in repairing those items, rather than replacing them, even if it just saves them a few dollars. Anything to save money is worth it.

Yet few people know how to make those repairs anymore. The day of the handyman is largely lost, especially people who can make general repairs. You can find people who can repair your cell phone, tablet or computer but that’s about it.

Often, repairs for small appliances can be made by cannibalizing one to get the parts you need for another. So part of providing general repair services is building up a stock of broken stuff that you can steal parts out of. I’ve known people who go dumpster diving regularly, checking people’s trash cans for things they’ve thrown out, just so that they can run this sort of business.

Related: 10 Prepping Items You Can Buy at the Salvation Army

Be a Contractor or Freelancer

More and more companies are using contract labor, especially for work that they need done, but where they can’t justify creating a full-time position. That trend will be even more magnified during a time of economic hardship, when companies need work done, but aren’t willing to run the risk of hiring people to fill positions.

The big advantage to companies in hiring contractors or freelancers is that they don’t have to pay for office space, social security or benefits. In exchange for that, many will pay contractors rather well, making it good work to get. Of course, in the midst of a depression, any work you can get is good work.

If you’re just about any type of professional and you’re good at what you do, you can always find work as a contractor. Working for several companies at a time gives you flexibility and some financial security, even in times where there isn’t much security to be found.

Start a YouTube Channel

11 Unexpected Ways To Earn Money In The Next DepressionSpeaking of teaching what you know about survival, YouTube is a great way of monetizing your knowledge.

Don’t just limit yourself to survival either; people start YouTube channels, teaching all sorts of things. There are probably people out there who want to know just about anything that you know. So figure out a format to teach them which will be interesting and entertaining and start recording.

The people who do the best on YouTube are usually ones who produce quality videos, even though they aren’t “profession” grade ones. That means good clear shots that show what you need to show, good lighting, good audio and that you are able to talk about the subject without a lot of pauses to say “Uhh” in all its various forms. A little planning and a little practice will go a long way towards making it so you can speak, without those annoying “uhs.”

Provide Secure Child Care

One of the big problems that occur in desperate times is that more and more people turn to crime. It’s said that desperate people do desperate things. Since a depression creates a lot of desperate people, you can be sure that there will be plenty of desperate things being done all around you. Things like kidnapping children for money.

Anyone who has had kids is capable of caring for kids. So why not offer day care service with a twist? Since you’re probably going to be armed anyway, to protect yourself and your own kids, let people know that your day care service is a secure environment, where their children will be protected.

Babysit Pets for Those Who Are Hospitalized

Another thing that goes with the problem of the pandemic is that there are people being hospitalized who have pets. What do we as a society, do about those animals? If the patient has family, that’s one thing; but if not? They need someone reliable, who loves animals, to take care of theirs.

You’d be surprised how much animal care costs these days. You can make a fairly good living, taking care of a few pets, while still being mostly free to explore one of those other ideas up there. Sounds a bit like the best of both worlds to me.

Related: 14 Dog Breeds for Preppers

Selling Electricity

If you’re homesteading, chances are you have some off-grid electrical power. Maybe you don’t have enough for everything you need; but chances are pretty high that you have more than others do. With people losing their electrical power, due to either maintenance problems at the electric company or their own inability to pay the bills, chances are you can make a few extra bucks selling electricity.

You’re probably thinking that you aren’t going to have enough electricity for your own needs, so how can you sell electricity to others? I get it. Solar panels really don’t put out a lot of electricity, unless you’ve got a lot of them. But I’m not talking about powering someone’s home. Rather, I’m talking about using your electrical power to charge cell phones and other portable electronic devices.

If current conditions are any indicator, people will probably still have their phones, no matter how much they’re struggling financially; and they’re going to need them charged. Providing that service might not make a lot of money; but it can fill in the gaps.

So, what else can you think of, which I missed off this list? The possibilities are literally endless, for those who have skills and a bit of imagination. What’s your idea?

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Rich M.
By Rich M. May 8, 2020 08:11
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50 Comments

  1. Pop's May 8, 16:05

    Small engine repair. lawnmowers trimmers chainsaws and the sharpening of blades and chains . but if you can sharpen hand saws then you really have a job

    Reply to this comment
  2. left coast chuck May 8, 16:05

    Hate to be the kid who said the emperor was buck nakked, but some of these require licenses from the state and inspection by petty bureaucrats. For example, child care. While lots of folks provide child care in their homes on an informal basis, in the PDRK they are required to be licensed by the state. Yeah, I know, that’s why it is the PDRK. And they risk significant penalties for providing child care without said imprimatur.

    Sell food to the public? Sorry, afraid not unless you meet state and local standards for preparation of food. Talk about petty bureaucrats. At the local farmers market the feldweber from the SS For Inspection Division saw a box of potatoes sitting on the street. He actually screamed at the vendor that he would shut down the whole farmers market if the vendor didn’t get those potatoes up on a table. I always wondered if he actually knew how most vegetables grow.

    A good friend of mine who is a skilled seamstress made masks for her family when this whole silliness started. We talked about her selling them to people who work with her son, whose employer was not providing any safety equipment even though they worked with a very high risk group. In the end we decided that without specific insurance coverage she couldn’t afford the risk of selling masks. What she would have made selling masks would have been offset by the possible cost of insurance coverage, assuming she could even get such coverage.

    As a member of the board of directors of the local Boys and Girls Club I undertook to try to find less expensive insurance coverage for the club. Our premiums were running $250,000 a year. A staggering sum of money. Most agents I talked to were eager to write a 6 figure policy. That is until they talked to the underwriters who didn’t just say no, they said, “Hell no!”

    It turned out the company we were with for the quarter mil was the only company willing to underwrite coverage in the market place. So when talking about insurance, for some coverages you just can’t bop into your local State Farm office and automatically sign up.

    With the staggering loss of income from sales tax, “hospitality tax” aka hotel room tax, loss of income in the future from the sale of business licenses because the cost of the license is dependent upon the business’s gross sales and face it, baby, gross sales are significantly down. Cities, counties and the state are going to be on the prowl for any income they can scare up which means fines and penalties for violating regulations you didn’t even know existed. Petty minions from the building department, fire department, health department and a whole host of other departments with regulatory rules will be out and about with orders to write up any and every violation. And let’s face it, the kind of folks who are attracted to those jobs are just the kind who take joy in doing their job. Think the cops were bad about traffic violations before the virus? Just wait until they are back on the job enforcing traffic laws instead of patrolling parks and beaches. Traffic fines are a major source of income for municipalities, counties and the state. Don’t kid yourself, they are about money, not safety.

    Until the people revolt, I think we are going to see a gestapo like approach to code enforcement that will make nazi germany seem like a libertarian paradise.

    Remember, the fewer people working = the more people depending on monopoly money from the government and the more people sucking from the government teat, the more control the government has over the folks on the teat.

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    • CC May 8, 17:07

      The real world provides many real opportunities, rules or not. Wake up.

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      • Govtgirl May 12, 07:17

        Yes, CC, we need to be creative, but if you cut into someone else’s territory or if someone doesn’t like the fact that you are getting by when they aren’t then you could run into trouble. There are forces working against self-sufficiency.

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    • IvyMike May 9, 01:04

      Haha, Feldwebel is a funny word but I think they would detail a Gefreiter to supervise the potatoes, although further research shows me the equivalent SS rank was Rottenfuhrer, no wonder the Germans can’t win a stinking war.
      I’m a licensed contractor in Texas and can testify the State doesn’t care what happens in the field but they are damn sure going to ding you with permit fees every step of the way. I’m expecting any day a Ground Access Fee I’m gonna have to pay every time I step out of my truck.

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      • red May 9, 14:36

        Mike: Shiesh, but how can you verbally castrate someone in English? And Spanish, might as be throwing french flowers and cheeze wizz. I like German for ripping into people. Even a little old lady sounds like a rabid pit bull 🙂

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        • IvyMike May 10, 01:38

          Mexicans are great with insults and nicknames, especially when dealing with all the racial differences along the brown rainbow. I had a couple semesters of German and have never thought their cursing was good for anything more than abusing women and Frenchmen. I studied English as a kid working construction in the summers. A lot of the foremen were retired NCOs who had fought in Europe or Korea. Now, R Lee Ermey did a great job as a DI in Full Metal Jacket but he was funny and these guys were terrifying. Used properly I guarantee there is no language for verbal castration that comes anywhere close to American. I like ‘throwing French flowers and cheeze whiz’. And Adobe construction, which I never had a chance to do.

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          • red May 10, 04:35

            Mike: English is a dialect of German! Add some Frenchified Latin, and you can make dates, or at least find the price, of bar maids after the Normans whipped the Saxons.
            Mexicans know the Game. It’s American Indian to the max. A San Salvadoran and two Puerto Ricans were busting my chops, so I ask the Puerto Ricans how long they been maridos. the white one got pissed, but the Taino and Salvadorian laughed and started up worse, getting me worse and we all had a good time.the white one called me a son of a bitch and I very gravely thanked him for complimenting my mother. He tried to claim she was a ho. I said, what? No, man, how would you know? She said she quit taking perversions. He started shouting and everyone made the malaca sign at him. Same happened to a black Dominican some Spaniards who didn’t know the Game. Hasta, niio!

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            • IvyMike May 11, 00:51

              Germanic peoples on the Continent were much more civilized than the tribal peoples of Britain, their language expanded and changed to deal with the concepts of science, medicine, finance, and the arts. The Angles and Saxons on the Island remained agriculturalists and pastoralists, words and sentences were much shorter and very concrete, talking about pig feces when their betters were discussing Luther’s 99 Theses. That’s why it is more suited for cursing than German.
              I was working with a crew of Mexican masons back in the day, it started raining on the way home so I had everybody crowd into the front of the truck, me and 5 Mexicans in a single cab one ton. We stopped at a light and some good old boys in the truck next to us rolled down their window, I did the same, one of them yelled out, how many blankety blank Mexicans can you fit in one truck? One of my guys leaned over and answered, in English, We have your sister in here, too. Perfect response, much better than cussing, shut the guy right up, I’ve been chuckling about it for years, he knew the game.

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              • red May 11, 11:24

                Mike: what does Mister mean in English? Mist Herr, master of the manure. Maybe that’s why most of Europe chose to call each other Lord, tho the position of mist herr was vital in the old day. He who controlled the manure, controlled the peasants.
                I had some dudes in Sonora busting my stones. I said, ah, well, and how is your beautiful mother today? It’s been so long since I saw her…We all laughed and they tried to get me drunk. Ah, well, like old Enrique always said, this Bear, a little tequila and his nose always finds the floor. Comfortable bed, woke up by giggling kids and a hearty breakfast. I missed the bus back to Agua Prieta, but even Sonora can be all right. Occasionally 🙂 niio

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        • Miss Kitty May 10, 03:32

          Red: It’s all how you say it, not what you say. I’ve known people who can say “good morning” and you feel the temperature drop thirty degrees.😘

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          • red May 10, 14:31

            Miz Kitty: Then you smile and say good-morning back and smile. He who get angry first is a loser in the Game and must be in life. If he is a loser, then your smile turns to shock as you look at him as if he suddenly grew something gross on his face. The state for a moment. You say, uh, excuse me, and walk away. for the rest of the day, the loser will be worried that you saw something. The Game started as a way to prevent war and bloodshed. It stops loser in their tracks. niio

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      • left coast chuck May 9, 17:29

        Mike: I think you are right. A Feldwebel would probably have a more mature approach than a mere Gefreiter.

        Speaking of taxes and fees. I kept a land line for years because supposedly it would provide backup when cell phone coverage was somehow interrupted. My total bill each month was $29 and change. I wondered why it was always so high for the least service that Ma Bell was providing. Turns out, looking at all the figures and not just the bottom line, service was $15.00 a month. Taxes and governmental fees were $14 and change. I was paying almost 100% tax on phone service. While the amount was de minimis, the principle was enormous. I now no longer have a land line (Oh, and no more calls from folks who do not want to sell me anything but just a few minutes of my time.)

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        • red May 9, 20:28

          chuck: You had a landline for how long? Hey, I got this great little bridge in Brooklyn ya might wanna buy. 50 busks? It’s a steal. but, yep, I fell for the same scam, but because no landline, no online. Verizon was the only server in the area then. I let the area and left them, as well. worse computer line service I ever saw. niio

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        • Govtgirl May 10, 14:20

          We did the same. The only thing that bothers me is this:
          1. My phone tells govt where I am.
          2. My e-mails are not private.
          3. Mail isn’t private either.
          My sister had POA for my mother for a couple of years before she died. Sis in Atlanta, Mom was in Fl. This is only a couple of years back do us probably still the rule. She signed up for a free service that advised her what mail went to mom in assisted living. Apparently those letter sorters that automatically divide all mail into zip codes now the last time I moved, I changed my mailing address online. The post office charged a fee for that. I thought that was a bit cheeky, but generally am not averse to user fees. But, I digress.
          Two big questions:
          What the heck is the p.o. doing capturing data???
          And
          Why the heck is it free?
          I don’t know how long they keep it . Last time we bought a gun was about 5 years back at Cabela’s and was tole they keep the background data for only 90 days. I don’t believe that.
          When I worked for the government, the rules for destroying even the most mundane piece of paper were ridiculous, often in the 3-7 year range. Then you could destroy or box it up and ship it off to some huge warehouse. Is there a destruction date for all the applications done online?
          So my email isn’t private, nor mail, nor phone records I guess, have no idea how long they keep that. Traffic-cams record where I drove and when. Any good ideas to get off that particular grid?
          When Bush passed the Patriot Act, I was generally for it. Felt that I had nothing to hide so who cares if someone knows what books I check out of the library. I no longer feel that way. Don’t feel real free these days.

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          • red May 10, 16:12

            Gov: the Patriot Act only gathered together all the little things already in place. Yes, your file starts at birth and ends at death. Along with that is anything anyone reports about you. Then, it’s cross checked with what they know, and the snitch is also checked. You can put a lot of data on a microchip, and that’s where it all goes. Paper filings are stored and allowed to rot. they don’t need them. when my data was stolen fro the military (twice now), they took me and what, 100,000 files in one laptop and walked out. Today, hackers break in constantly. https://epic.org/privacy/vatheft/
            I’ve had email that took 3 days to get to where they were sent. lettered that took close to two weeks to go a few hundred miles. this always happens when a dem is in the WH. Phone makes strange noises when I call places people know they’re being watched. Mention Leonard Peltier, and the computer grabs that and records. Harmless, humble li’l ol’ me has been on the watch list for decades 🙂 niio

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            • Govtgirl May 11, 05:18

              Thanks, red. This is good to know, but I think I was a little happier not knowing.I haven’t believed the government was benign for some time. Guess I have to watch my back. Everybody else is.

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              • red May 11, 11:45

                gov: too true. I have family who can hack about anything given enough time. Enough of them work for one agency or another. No government is ever benign. Each exists only for one reason, to support and grow government. History bears that out. niio

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          • left coast chuck May 10, 23:04

            The U. S. post office has always provided mail covers for law enforcement upon request. No search warrant needed. A mail cover entails holding your mail for the enforcement agency to get down to the p.o. and look at who your mail is coming from; periodicals, magazines anything and everything. That was in the days before scanners. Now I imagine that the p.o. just scans the face of the envelope and send the images to the law enforcement agency that requested the info. No search warrant needed, no violation of the privacy of the mail. The address and the info that is on the face of the envelope is public information, just like the stuff in your trash can out on the street waiting to be picked up. Any agency can go through your trash can out on the street and pick out anything they want without a warrant. You have abandoned it according to the D.C.Supremes as soon as you put it out on the street.

            It is just absolutely amazing what one can learn about people from the mail. My printing company maintained mailing lists and did mailing for most of our customers. Without even making an effort to learn info about folks, but just by handling all that info on a monthly basis, I learned who was in what group, learned about the membership of certain groups by doing the sorting for the post office which we did, sorting and bundling the mail for mailing, again, picked up much personal info without attempting to actually snoop.

            Your mailman know what magazines you get; who you buy from; who you owe money to; who you owe money to but aren’t paying; who your lawyer is; who your doctors are; what church you go to; what clubs you belong to; but he probably know less about you than the guy at the p.o. who is sorting the mail for carrier route delivery. The carrier just gets a glance at your mail as he sticks it in your box. The sorter at the p.o. has to look at each and every piece of mail before he can sort it. Carrier route sorting is still done by hand unless it is a huge office building.

            Of course, the carrier may thumb through your magazines while he is eating lunch if they are ones that he is interested in. Ever wonder why sometimes your magazine looks as if it is second hand? It probably is.

            Regarding Cabelas only keeping the 4473 for 90 days, that may be for the 4473, but they also have a bound record book that lists all the firearms that have ever crossed their threshold, by serial number and all sorts of other data that they are required to keep for inspection by BAFT gestapo any time the gestapo wants to look at it. It had better be up to date with all the i’s dotted and the t’s crossed otherwise you get to pay a hefty fine — see my post about collecting fees and fines in this list — and stand in danger of getting your FFL suspended or revoked. Those record books must be kept as long as the company is in business and then they probably must go to the BATF to be stored forever. I don’t know about the last part. I will have to check with my gun store friend and see if he knows.

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            • red May 11, 03:21

              chuck: I might be wrong, but if I mail something, doesn’t it then become the property of the mail service? Also, emails and so on are the property of the service provider. Yes, all records of sales have to have a hard copy. With computers, today it can all be accessed by hackers or the feds. Yeah, I know that second-hand feeling when getting a magazine 🙂 niio

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              • left coast chuck May 11, 23:31

                No, Red, the federales and other law enforcement may not open your first class mail without a warrant. It is private. However, many times they can gain enough information to obtain a search warrant from a compliant judge from a mail cover. Now, if an envelope were to be mailed unsealed and the letter inside fell out, looking at the letter to ascertain which envelope it went to is not a violation of your right to privacy. It is merely helping the proficiency of the postal system.

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                • red May 12, 14:18

                  chuck: Nixon very nearly went to prison for having 2 FBI files on men known to be collaborating with the enemy in a war. The Clintons had over 700 at one time on personal enemies and nothing was done. It’s illegal to open any mail, even those magazines we talked about. I know what an envelope looks like when someone opened it, the resealed it. When Carter was in, I got letters that had been cut partway open. The law states probably cause. to the dnc, the Constitution is a living document, no more important than the toilet paper some 3rd world constitution is written on. niio

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            • Govtgirl May 11, 05:09

              Thanks for all the info, LCC. If they do away with cash, might as well walk around in our birthday suits.

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              • red May 11, 11:41

                Gov: Only till they have to look at me. then they all go running for their shrinks 🙂
                Cashless might suit Millennials, but even they like the feeling of cash in hand. Trading is slowly becoming a way of life, again, and the IRS is having hair-pulling contests and who can put the most holes in a wall with his head. over it. If we go cashless, can you imagine how fast the people will jump into trading again? niio

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                • Govtgirl May 12, 00:21

                  I agree, red. Bartering eould pick up. I like cash. Looking back, it surprises me I went to swiping. I fought it for awhile. Always felt that writing a figure on a check or handing over greenbacks reminded me of just how much I was shelling out.

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          • Alaska gal May 12, 16:55

            Years ago I worked for a large national retailer. In our sporting goods department we sold guns. After a few years they bowed to pressure and stopped selling. Then sevel years later our sister store closed. They sent stuff that the company was keeping to us. Included was several boxes of paper,work from gun sales. I was tasked with sending these boxes on to the federal firearms office. So If the store closes the government gets the records.

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      • left coast chuck May 13, 15:30

        I don’t know, Mike, the Boche sure know how to handle the French. They have been invading France any time they felt like it since the 19th century. Of course, that isn’t saying a whole lot since the French haven’t been very successful since Crecy.

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    • SilverHawk May 9, 01:19

      Your seamstress friend should open an Etsy shop and sell her face masks on Etsy. No need for liability insurance. And Etsy recently sent an email to all of its sellers asking them to make and sell face masks, since they were having trouble keeping up with the demand for them.

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    • Govtgirl May 9, 09:33

      So glad you commented. No more driving 5 miles over the speed limit. I can envision the state pushing through the income tax they wanted alongside the 8.5% sales tax we already pay.

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  3. drnutt May 8, 16:08

    I have had stuff for sale on ebay, facebook, etc, and had kind of hit the wall, wasn’t selling much. But with everybody at home, posters, matchbooks, local stuff, antique window mirrors…..are selling. Time on our hands.

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    • BlackberryFarmer May 8, 18:23

      Yes, me too, was surprised at how my business picked up on eBay and Poshmark while everyone was home and still had a little income to spend.

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    • left coast chuck May 9, 01:30

      Maybe it is time to get rid of my Western Airlines 50th Anniversary customer give away bag and my Xerox Brother Dominic 86 Olympics commemorative bag.

      Does anyone remember that infamous letch Brother Dominic aka Jack Eagle who was fired by Xerox for his feely touchy attitude around women. Hey, he was just getting into the role as a Middle Ages monk.

      Or Western Airlines, The Only Way to Fly? With stewardesses who wore hot pants and go-go boots or mini-skirts and were cheerful and attractive? No, no, not sexless “flight attendants” stewardesses on the prowl for pilot husbands.

      Western and PSA ran a flight every hour from LA to SFO. It was almost like taking a bus. Just walk up to the ticket counter, get a ticket, go to the gate ten minutes before boarding time, get on board and an hour later you are in your destination. People were polite and well dressed. There were no fistfights in the aisles; no screaming fits at not being served your favorite beverage; no cops coming on the flight to drag a passenger off in handcuffs. All the passengers had bathed at least in the last ten days and their clothes didn’t look like they came off a skid row bum. What happened? And all that for $19 each way. A huge $38 round trip. United, in order to get more passengers on their Oxnard to Los Angeles run used to only charge for the LA to SFO leg. You basically flew free from Oxnard to LAX if you were continuing on United.

      One of the most interesting flights of my life was flying from Oxnard to LA on the Super Otter. It was during a Santana wind and the plane gained and lost altitude like a Six Flags roller coaster ride. I don’t know how much gain or loss each was, but it seemed like it was considerable. Happy to keep the seat belt fastened on that flight.

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  4. Kimmer May 8, 18:28

    You forgot hair cuts.

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  5. Filmaker May 8, 19:44

    I’ve read that during the last depression, many people took up writing for the ‘pulps’ of the era. Today you could do so through such sites as LULU, SMASHWORDS, etc. and avoid some of the problems encountered back then (the most annoying being ‘payment by lawsuit’.)

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  6. barbuto May 8, 21:55

    i must agree with the commenter who warned about licenses and regulations. I think most people are aware that building codes in towns and municipalities are often arbitrary and the “inspectors” are most likely relatives of the local officials. Often they will outright ask for bribes. My family was in business with our cousin. We had a delicatessen. The health inspectors were bribed by my cousin, and he made a lot of money and retired in 20 years. If you want to do a business….avoid anything that involves the town, county or state and license….Its all corrupt, believe me. I took a neighbor to the local town court. He answered a traffic summons. I was amazed that the judge did a hearing. He asked the person if they were guilty of the misdemeanor or not. If they plead guilty he imposed a fine plus a $93 court fee. This took about one minute. Now you can do the math. $93 a minute…thats a lot of money. The ones who plead not guilty were given a court date…but that took 30 seconds….$93 a minute…thats some business. No wonder the cops are out in droves writing tickets for lane changes without signalling, not making a 100% stop and other petty “crimes and misdemeanors”….So avoid anything that will bring the state or county on you…haircuts, food prep, day care are all to be avoided….Oh and selling on line? I used to sell my old books on Amazon. But Amazon started charging Sales tax. Then they sent me a notice…they had reported my sales to the state Tax Dept..!…Now the owner of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world pays NO INCOME tax. And his Amazon empire uses the USPS at a cheaper rate than I must pay…!!!…So I cancelled my amazon account. You can imagene what I think about Amazon and paying the state sales tax…..just a FYI…

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  7. red May 8, 23:26

    Post SHTF any good skill, even a professional knife sharpener, is going to be a hit. Can you heat and roll steel? Heavy duty it’s a musket barrel. If you can do that, you can wind springs needed. Cut and drive screws. Make a good knife. Sharpen a handsaw, Axes. I can make by hand adobe blocks. Commercial ones cost almost 2 bucks each for dried clay, but you need to know how to mix sand and clay. There’s a garden soil test on Preppers that works. niio

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    • left coast chuck May 9, 01:33

      As one of her very first jobs after WWII my wife made bricks. She said it was the hardest work she ever did in her life. Working as an au pair for service families was a piece of cake after that.

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      • red May 9, 14:32

        Definitely not a job a woman should do. she has my sympathy and I’m glad she escaped it. I like it because it’s good bull work, lots of exercise, but at least I can quit if I get tired. niio

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      • Red State Escapee May 9, 18:06

        Funny you should say something like that. I worked in a smelly, LOUD manufacturing plant with lots of cursing, heavy lifting, torn muscles, and co-workers who didn’t bathe. Then I tried a second job as an au pair. I hated it. It was literally the worst hell I’d ever experienced, and this includes the deaths of my parents.

        I give permanent kudos to anyone who can do child work. You are all stronger than anyone.

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    • JKS May 26, 18:22

      hey Red, what does niio mean?

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      • red May 27, 00:27

        niio, walk in God’s beauty. It’s a common greeting with native Americans who are American Indians 🙂

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  8. left coast chuck May 9, 01:13

    We must bear in mind that in the 30s, government intrusion into domestic commerce had not reached the levels that exist today. I am confident that child care was not regulated as it is in the PDRK today. I doubt that food preparation on a small scale was as regulated as it is today, otherwise you would not have had men selling apples by the side of the road. I suspect that it was in the big cities that more regulation existed and more so in the eastern cities. My mother had a license to be a hairdresser in the 30s, so I know Pennsylvania had latched on to that trade as early as the 1930s. I suspect in the southern and western states, things were a bit more free.

    I know several years ago I was in Idaho and watched a painter wash out his gear in the gutter. Ha! In the PDRK that would have resulted in the hazmat team being called out, with a full blown investigation about illegal hazardous material disposal being instigated with the costs of the same being imposed at time of sentencing of the hapless painter.

    A good example is pictures we see of men standing on the street with a box of apples sitting on the sidewalk, selling them for 5¢ or 10¢. Today, the health department feldwerber would be out demanding to see his farmer’s market license and insisting that the apples must be displayed on a table. No sitting on the sidewalk allowed. I don’t know about other states, but in the PDRK, boxed food is not allowed to touch the floor. You will see nothing but boxes of produce on carts. That’s different from when I worked in a grocery store in the 50s. Apples and other produce in boxes on the floor was not considered a crime against humanity.

    The only hope you might have is that things are so bad that all government forms have disappeared. Lots of luck with that wish. As I pointed out in my original post, governmental entities are going to be hungry for bucks and searching out all the nit-picky ways they can squeeze money from anyone who has any which means folks who are not on the dole.

    So, if you are in business for yourself out of your home (violation of building codes and business license codes) keep your head down and DO NOT advertise on the internet. Keep it word of mouth and make sure everyone who shows up needing your services is either known personally to you or can be vouched for by a close friend or good relative. Watch out for relatives. Sometimes they are your worst enemy. Ask the Chinese or the Russians.

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  9. Miss Kitty May 10, 03:52

    I agree with LLChuck, the local and state goobermint will be going citation happy what with the loss of their usual income. However, that doesn’t mean that they can be everywhere all the time.
    I’ll bet as things progress further down the crapper and people run out of money we’ll see a growing black market economy… people selling items out of the back of their car, offering in your home beauty services, just showing up at a work site with a cooler of homemade sandwiches and another of drinks for sale or a box of homemade “designer” masks. (BTW, personalized and decorative masks will be the next “hot” accessories I think. “My mask is by Oscar de Lorenta, darling”. Hey, stupider fads have happened!)
    Desperation breeds creativity.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck May 10, 23:21

      The only problem is the goobermints have taken a page from the commies and encourage stoolies. People have been ratting out folks on the beach out here in the PDRK. Not other folks on the beach, but folks driving down the road ratting out a family on the beach to the fuzz. I am amazed that cops are actually going out and issuing citations. But then there have always been the sticklers versus the Sergeant Shultzes — “I know nozzing.”

      Just keep a low profile if you are doing under the table marketing and don’t want official attention. It’s just absolutely amazing how many folks post on the internet their outlaw behavior. It used to be the cops had to hope the crook dropped his wallet or checkbook at the scene of a crime or canvass the pawn shops in the area. Now all they have to do is scan E-Bay or Craig’s list or some other internet forum to get info on crimes committed and the criminals responsible.

      Reply to this comment
  10. Govtgirl May 12, 07:03

    LCC, this government-encouraged ratting out and people’s willingness to engage in it is truly ugly. I feel like we are in the middle of a social experiment and that there are gleeful puppeteers pulling the strings. My son a few years back went duck hunting for the first time with his yuppie friends. I’m sure they were marked as easy targets by the locals with their new camo and fancy gear. They got permission to hunt on a farmer’s property. They didn’t hit anything. A guy up on the highway called the local wildlife official and said they were going after a protected kind of duck or goose. They had studied the pictures and we’re sure they didn’t. The warden came over and looked all around. They had no kills, but had spent some ammo and he said there were some of the protected birds in the area though he saw none. They were all cited. They are all upwardly-mobile types and wanted clean records and did not want to lose hunting privileges for several years so each paid about $1200-1500 to a lawyer to make it go away, but it took a while. The ratter gets a finder’s fee for reporting people. It is probably a lucrative fall sideline and not nearly as dangerous as fighting fires in OR. Cannot get inside the mind of someone who would call in a complaint about social distancing. There would be so much to fear in a SHTF situation without informers. Prepper books talk about importance of blending in so as not to invite looters. Could having a victory garden to feed yourself become a not – okay thing? Could it be construed as hoarding if you don’t turn the produce over to the local authorities? I am not afraid of catching the Wuhan virus. Snitches, talk of forcibly removing affected people from their homes, and contact-tracing scare the hell out of me.

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  11. Govtgirl May 12, 07:27

    Thanks for the link to the highest calorie vegetables. We are all interested in one aspect more than another at different times. Am trying to learn more about beans so was interested in this article and think I just filed it away first time around.

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