Checking out...Going John Galt...No Longer Participating

Discussion in 'Freedom and Liberty' started by DarkLight, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus Site Supporter

    I read Atlas Shrugged for the first time about 15 years ago. Yes, I was already in my 30s when I read it for the first time all the way through. It resonated with me, I started a blog with reference to John Galt in the title, I looked for gold $ pins, the whole nine yards...but I didn't check out.

    For the last couple of years I've had a couple of things on my mind:
    • What would it take to convince enough people to just check out and quit participating
    • How big would the "strike" need to be to have an impact
    • How long would it take to really, truly get the attention of TPTB, whoever they are
    • How long would it have to last to be meaningful
    Possibly a more important question though, is how long could most people who wanted to check out actually do so?

    From a discussion point of view, I'd like to explore those questions. What I don't want to do is have this devolve into a rant about illegal taxation (although it is), and a whole host of other tangential topics. I'm curious, at least as a thought experiment at this point, as to what it would truly take.

    I am a producer, or at least I see myself as one. I provide a service to the company that I work for and I get compensated for it. I dutifully pay may taxes and receive at least some services or what should pass as services. I make charitable contributions. I spend what I can on the things I like to spend them on and pay the rest for the "necessary" stuff in my life. I don't think I'm a leach or a mooch.

    What would it take for me to check out and just walk away? I don't know. I'm not independently wealthy although I do more than pretty well. I couldn't set up shop in the middle of the Rockies and frankly I don't want to be a hermit or a live with just my family as the only ones within several hundred miles. I'm a semi-social creature, so I don't think a Galt's Gulch is doable for me any time soon. But would it need to be? If I had a skill I could barter for to receive the goods and services I needed, and enough of the people around me decided they didn't want to feed the beast anymore, could we get by? And for how long?

    I see taxes and any secured loan being the primary reasons that people couldn't check out and the tools the government and business would use to force people to get back to work. They couldn't force us to work at gunpoint, but they could absolutely make life miserable for those unable to fight back and without the resources to stay out for a long time. What other tools do they have at their disposal to force us back in line, or are they all economic? Would they actually take the chance and go "full despotism" if it was required?

    And finally, what can we do in little (and not so little) ways to check out, go Galt, and stop the engine of the world?
  2. oil pan 4

    oil pan 4 Monkey+++

    Live below your means, don't keep up with the Jones, concentrate on building your own little empire. Don't stop the engine, build your own.

    The biggest ways I don't support the system is I have never had a new car and I lived in a dead relatives house from 2011 to 2018 and saved up a ton of money, barely utilize any credit.
  3. Tempstar

    Tempstar Old and crochety Site Supporter+

    Given thought to this as well. The thing I see stopping the 99.997% from doing it is comfort. The people of this country and most others have been too comfortable for too long. Almost gone are folks who survived the Great Depression, and almost gone is a whole generation who have actually lived off the land.
    Seepalaces, Zimmy, Tully Mars and 6 others like this.
  4. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Brewery Monkey Moderator

    Walk away from your home, your car, your job or business and live on the streets or in the most remote National Forests. Collect all the government handouts until it goes tango uniform. I figure it would take at least 100 million to just go fully out of the earning system. No taxes, No rent, No car, rough life. If there were several settlements established that might help, but I believe the population has gotten too large for a successful John Galt event.
    Seepalaces, Gator 45/70 and DarkLight like this.
  5. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    I'm in !
    Motomom34 and Seepalaces like this.
  6. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    At 80, the state monopoly in drugs, medical devices, medication, the receiving back at least some of the money I paid into social security for 66 years, difficulty in converting 401k and property into non financial assets that would be portable, necessity to utilize assets that I have created, greenhouse, home, trucks, tractors, rental property, garden, wood storage, etc. All of which is subject to control by the state if I don't play the game. Actually probably less likely to lose it if SHTF than going Galt.
  7. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey

    WAIT! But all the welfare suck ups have not been able to do what you suggest.
    Seepalaces likes this.
  8. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    It will happen on it's own due to attrition. We now have people approaching 40 that are content to live in Mom and Dad's basement and rely on public services. As soon as the last working generation retires there won't be any taxes coming in to support the moochers.I'd give it 20-25 years. Not sure the migrants coming in will be willing to support them.
  9. oil pan 4

    oil pan 4 Monkey+++

    If I didn't leave Maine I would probably still living at my parents house.
    Working of course.
    Seepalaces likes this.
  10. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    I will take a broad stab at this.
    • What would it take to convince enough people to just check out and quit participating
    You would have to have a large enough group that you could defend against USGovernment or enough people who are uncomfortable enough that rebellion is easier. As long as people are relatively comfortable, food, shelter, clothing they are not going to rebel.​
    • How big would the "strike" need to be to have an impact
      • Bigger than Waco
    • How long would it take to really, truly get the attention of TPTB, whoever they are
      • Waco got their attention but not in a good way, same with the guys who did the standoff in US Fish and Wildlife building and got shot
    • How long would it have to last to be meaningful
      • It would have to be a complete revolution (i personally think this is happening right now, quietly in financial markets)
  11. ochit

    ochit Monkey+

    I checked out a long time ago, since no one lives forever -- looks like that's going to work out for me, then I found a book I checked out of the Dallas library in the last century and did not have a twinge of conscience. Of course that sell by date on a can of tuna bugged me -- 6 months out. maybe I was reading it upside down...
    Seepalaces likes this.
  12. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    First, let's define "checking out." What exactly are we talking about here?

    As far as a strike... I imagine people could be noticed and perhaps even regain power some if a large majority stop paying their taxes...but in the end it still wouldn't work. In the end, you're still going to have to wiggle them out of their hidey-holes, probably at the end of a gun, to either lock them up (and throw away the key) or stand them up against a wall. That is the only way revolutions or coups play out, one plays for keep. And, they know it.

    But, why do we do these exercises, the country is lost and the elites are simply sucking the last of the marrow out of a walking corpse. Almost everything we've been taught is a lie, even all the rules that we and the country live by. And, the biggest lie(s) are those that make the rules...because they don't have to follow them.

    China will in the end become the world leader and super power...the writing is on the wall. America was bought and sold a long, long time ago. But, they'll drag it out as long as possible, drink, and be merry!
    Seepalaces and Gator 45/70 like this.
  13. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    Aw, DL don't be such a pessimist...even a dead cat bounces.
    Seepalaces, VisuTrac, Zimmy and 2 others like this.
  14. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    Couple of misconceptions there.

    1. The "moochers" are an important part of a debt based money system. As long as money is created by debt, ( and that IS how all our fiat money comes into existence ) more money must always be created to pay back the debt PLUS interest, or the system collapses. Since individuals can only take on so much debt before they bankrupt, the govt, which has no such problem apparently, must step up and borrow....then find what seem to be idiotic ways to spend the money...moochers, studies on the sex habits of newts, $800 toilet seats, heck, you name it....the point is to borrow and float it out there so previous debt may be retired and replaced with new interest.

    2. That taxes are necessary and must be paid. I'd submit they are not. Since, on the national level, we have been deficit spending for many decades, and the FED simply covers the govt debt issues if private suckers don't buy it, my theory is if you can borrow/print-to-cover 1/2 your needs, (which we have done on the national level in recent years) why the heck can't that be done for the other half ?? And why can't it be extended on to the state and local level...simply print whatever is needed to spend !!
    Motomom34, Ganado, Seepalaces and 3 others like this.
  15. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    The end problem is there isn't much nutritional value in that printed steak and you get very poor mileage out of that printed gallon of fuel. I have no idea what would of happened to this country over the last 20 years if the rest of the world hadn't bought into the delusion that fiat money means something. We exist by creating debt that somehow the rest of the world accepts for cheap shoddy goods and survive on them while we have destroyed our manufacturing and production systems. Went to town 25 miles away, traffic was horrendous at 10 AM on a Friday morning. Thousands of cars. Stores were packed, etc. School is in session, during working hours, we produce no fuel, no cars, very few goods, no food, have no large military bases, etc, here in New Hampshire. Where were they all coming from or going to, where did the money come from to buy the cars and gas and goods? How long is it going to continue? Is it going to collapse or will the powers to be decide that the sheeple need to be distracted by the drums and fifes of another war? I no longer have any idea of what is going on. The politics and propaganda are totally out of control and every group, including those of us who prep, is fighting for one of the limited seats on the life boat and wishes to make sure that they control its supplies. Whenever a voice of reason tries to inject some reality into the situation, the other groups and the powers that be, silence them. We have over the years had some very intelligent people in our government, they are marginalized, destroyed, or quit in disgust. The demagogues, Schummer, Obama, Hillary, faux black leaders, etc, shout out and delay any meaningful change and we just slide into oblivion at an ever increasing rate.
    Keep your preps up, your powder dry, your faith in God, and be as grey as possible, I personally don't think we are going to survive as a nation that we will recognize, and now just wish to survive. Being part native American, please don't try to tell me that it could never happen here. For various groups and in various places around the world it has always been the norm. Peaceful coexistence, prosperity, and a comfortable way of life have been an historical accident in the US that existed for some groups for a few decades and now is again fading back into the norm of either chaos or the control by some elite class.
    Seepalaces, Bandit99, Zimmy and 2 others like this.
  16. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    I CAN happen here, and eventually will.
    The problem, to reverse paraphrase Lazarus Long is that right now there IS no place else to go.
    I personally think a Carrington event would be our best bet for a true reset. Random EMPs or CMEs are continental in scale at best, and would allow very large percentages of the NWO/elite to survive And I guarantee they would prosper off the wreckage. Any event must be world wide, else we lose.
    duane, Seepalaces, Bandit99 and 2 others like this.
  17. ochit

    ochit Monkey+

    It may be the elite class that run things but it is the fools in the street that give them the power. Lets face it most of those that supported the left candidates were not wearing a cheapo Brooks brother 15,000 dollar suit or the ladies sporting Oscar de la Renta evening gowns they were teachers and students wearing putang hats and sporting T-shirts.

    For whatever reasons most of the mainstream media are not just in league they are paid assets of the deep state a few were questioned on camera of getting a paycheck from alphabet agencies, but it is the public that takes in hook line and sinker the notion that the left is not racist not communist and for the worker. I want to know since when for 50 years the major cities have become a shadow of their former selves incomes have dropped jobs disappeared and social services has exponentially exploded, all on their watch (democrats) that's who is running New York, Chicago, L.A., and any city of size or notoriety. I watched a recent editorial that if you made less than a half mil a year your could not afford to live in San Francisco people are driving in 1 to 2 hours out. Anyone that thinks it's not a problem these people control the taxing authority and there is no limit to how high your taxes can go, Most cities are broke because they do not have the funds to pay their retired employees -- that is a debt when you cannot pay debts your broke the unfunded liability for America is 200 trillion looking out another 30 years and by that time we will have a debt of a trillion per person. It wont get that far at some point inflation will rear it's head we will be a Venezuela economy.

    I never understood where when you get a raise and the cost of living moves up how anyone thinks they got ahead ? I get a dollar raise and my insurance goes up 10 cable up all meat is up and when was the last time anyone saw 3 cans for a dollar in a grocery store ? a damn can of sardines is a dollar you cant afford the crackers a soda is 2 dollars so a cheap meal is not cheap if you buy any drink other than water. I can still afford to live but I see many young people that are not getting by and have no vehicle insurance just a room in an apartment sharing with others Ramen noodles have almost taken over one isle of a grocery store.our economy is a ticking time bomb and half of the public fails to see that giving free money to interlopers is not a problem -- amazing.
    Alf60, duane, Seepalaces and 3 others like this.
  18. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus Site Supporter

    It's interesting how a number of the responses went the "revolution" route and it seemed to be more armed rebellion than silent revolution.

    @HK_User - That's my whole point. "The welfare suck ups" are the moochers and the reason for us to "go Galt" and quit contributing to their freeloading way of life. As to whether or not they have not been able to or simply choose not to, the end result is the same...they have not and the downfall of our Representative Republic will be "When the people find that they can vote themselves largess from the government coffers" (too many attributions, from De Tocqueville to Hamilton to Franklin).

    @Dunerunner - This is kind of where I'm at. I don't know that it would take fully 1/3 of the population of the country to go on strike. Based on the most recent census data, ~63% of the US (~189,000,000) is between the ages of 18 and 65 (working age and/or actively contributing). I don't think 52% of the potential capable workforce would need to walk out. This number doesn't include the welfare state that should/could be working and aren't. Another census number says 156 million working adults (over 16)...I call BS since I'm positive that there are more than 33 million people on welfare at this point. And while I have long stated that I can prove anything with a sharp enough pencil and enough variables, even the most generous estimate is 21% of working age Americans are receiving some sort of assistance. Some is justified, some is not, and I'm not trying to say what is and isn't, but we are creeping up on the "more takers than earners" tipping point and the closer we get to that point the more we speed up.

    And as for settlements, I assume you mean "Galt's Gulches" for people to participate in and not welfare by another name. Pretty sure that's where you are going.

    @Ganado - Along with @Dunerunner's comment above, this right here is probably the single biggest hurdle. Sure, the government is taking and encroaching more and more, but I have my 84" TV with 1Gb Internet and 1000 channels and free porn and electricity and food, etc. Until people are willing to do with less until they can make it happen "on their own" (in a group of course), opting out won't gain enough momentum to make a true difference.

    @Lancer - While a Carrington level event might be a good trigger, there is no guarantee that it would do what "we" hope it would do either short or long term. It's too random and gives you even less control as to time and place. Opting out, however, is much more under your control.

    @Bandit99 - I do these exercises because while I don't disagree that the country is very likely lost, that doesn't mean I have to aid in the final stages of downfall. I'd prefer to check out early and watch from the porch with a cold beer and bag of beef jerky. :)
    Motomom34, Ganado, Seepalaces and 2 others like this.
  19. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus Site Supporter

    Not being a pessimist, being a realist. I don't agree with Ayn Rand for the most part, but at least some of the concepts in the book have merit. The older I get, however, the less content I am with "giving until it hurts" and working more for less in the long run. It took me 15 years to save up the money to do the renovations on the house at the 15 year mark. Yes, basically saving from day one, paying for crisis after crisis and depleting the fund, dealing with increased taxes, etc., and starting over, for 15 years from when we bought the house new to when we finally could pay to renovate at the time that we just couldn't put it off anymore.

    What we get for what we pay to (or are charged by) the government and what we provide for those who won't provide for themselves via tax funded welfare is unsustainable.

    I stated that "I don't agree with Ayn Rand for the most part", which isn't an accurate way of stating what I agree/disagree with, but I don't want to change the post in a material way for the people who have liked it.

    I actually mostly agree with Rand from a philosophical standpoint. I don't completely agree with her about anything (hell, I don't completely agree with myself from time to time), and I'm not a fan of The Fountainhead which I found very, VERY hard to read. But in Atlas Shrugged, the philosophies really spoke to me. And while most everything is black and white in the book (and I get it, life isn't) and kind of over the top, the points remain the same and are as valid as ever.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2018
  20. Zimmy

    Zimmy Wait, I'm not ready!

    If every taxpayer filed a couple of income tax filing extensions starting April 15th I feel the example of coordinated resistance would ring TPTB’s nerves like the Liberty Bell was over their heads.
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