What Are The Benefits And Liabilities Of Cashing Out My IRA?

Dear Bob,

I am a current subscriber to your newsletter (The Bob Livingston Letter™), and need some advice because of what I read in your recent article about Obama possibly confiscating retirement funds. I am 62 years old, still working and earn $60,000 a year. I have ten more years to pay on my house.

About four years ago, I was laid off from my former job, and I took my 401k and invested it ($235,000) into an Individual Retirement Annuity. Presently, the value is $219,941. The Guaranteed Withdrawal Balance is $311,205, the Guaranteed Annual Withdrawal Amount is $15,560 and the Guaranteed Minimum Withdrawal Benefit Bonus Base is $270,613. I am guaranteed a 5 percent increase per year. My question is what are the benefits and liabilities of cashing out (what will the dollar be worth in four years?), and buying something like silver or gold. If I cashed out today, I would receive $209,000. My only other investment is $13,000 in Canadian Maple Leaf coins. Thank you in advance for your response.

Guy Pasvogel

Dear Guy,
Your best decision so far is your investment in Maple Leaf gold coins as you can see how they have moved up in dollar price.

Everything hinges on whether or not you trust the government. I terminated my retirement accounts about 12 years ago because I believed that gold and silver were much better investments, and I would have control over my money. That decision worked out well.

I believe that retirement accounts are guaranteed instruments of confiscation and I wouldn’t want to be in the same state with one.

The government will steal all retirement accounts by some ruse. They are going to anyway through currency depreciation. The government/Federal Reserve is printing trillions of dollars. Simple logic and arithmetic says that they are diluting the currency, i.e., destroying it. If one keeps pouring water in the milk, soon there will be only water.

Your liability of staying in "government" paper is impoverishment. Of course this is just my opinion.

Please seek other advice before you make a move, but do it YESTERDAY!!!!!!!!!

Good luck,

U.S. Exporting Runaway Inflation Across The Entire World With Its Reckless Money Printing

Nations across the globe are now dealing with food riots and anarchy.

The weather and inflation are leading to an explosion in prices and civil strife. Wheat prices have doubled in seven months, corn has increased more than 90 percent and soybeans have surged more than 55 percent. The fear of inflation is not child’s play. It carries the potential for even higher oil prices than those caused by the turmoil in the Middle East.

This brings to mind, have you stored food as we have repeatedly advised for a few years now? This advice is now turning to a red alert warning. Now that the currency is in serious depreciation (inflation), we can store food at a profit by buying it ahead of inflation.

I have studied the collapse of money in Weimar Germany. There became great scarcity of food and the stores were empty. We have potential for this in America, plus the danger of food riots.

Since we live in the end times of fiat paper money, there is an inherent bias toward inflation, i.e., printing large amounts of paper money. Add all this to the fact that the government always changes its measure of inflation, always understating the numbers and all the while not even counting food, energy and housing. How’s that for deception?

The unavoidable and certain end result will be an even greater crisis than the world has yet seen. Massive sovereign bankruptcies, food riots and general chaos are the end result of trying to foment growth by inflation (printing money) and will end in tears.

Also, it is time and past time to accumulate gold and silver. Be sure to get some U.S. 90 percent silver coins. It will be the exchange money of choice when this system fails completely.

The time is soon coming when we won’t be able to get these coins. Up to now, buying gold and silver has been very profitable as measured in paper money. But now we are past the consideration of profitability. Our concern has changed 100 percent to survival.

Are we past reality? Do we believe that we have monetary invincibility and a sense of intellectual superiority against all warning signals to the contrary?

We see that in this year of 2011 politicians and governments will continue to try to deter the inevitable and rescue the unsalvageable with high-speed, high-octane created money. And look out below! This could be the crunch year for survival of the system. Precious metals and commodities may be the only things left standing.

Meanwhile, as we head for the final exits, precious metals, commodity producers (food, oil, iron ore, and other base metals) will all benefit from money printing.

The reason we buy commodity stocks with depreciating paper money is because commodity stocks have leverage. Up to a point they appreciate more than the currency depreciates.

One caveat is to know when to exit all paper in favor of real goods. That is why you should continue to visit Personal Liberty Digest.

Incivility In Political Discourse

There has been a lot of talk recently from political elites and pundits about “incivility” in political discourse. They talk as if this incivility is a recent phenomenon.

The protests in Wisconsin over Governor Scott Walker’s attempts to reign in government spending on its public employees’ pensions and  healthcare is a prime example of the lack of civility they are talking about—though you don’t hear much about it because it’s not Tea Party activists opposing liberty-stealing acts of government that are protesting, but union thugs trying to force their will on a governor elected to scale back government costs. But many videos posted on YouTube show protesters screaming at opponents and members of the media, with much name-calling, expletives and even pushing, shoving and mild violence thrown in.

Of course, name-calling, expletives, ad hominems and physical attacks are the refuge of the ignorant. It’s a convenient fallback position for those unable or unwilling to defend their positions with facts.

It is also a common practice of the ignorant to automatically assign evil motives to a person or group expressing a counter opinion. Many reach the conclusion that any person or any group that disagrees politically or philosophically is somehow bad and intends to inflict as much harm or heartache as possible on their opponents.

This often manifests itself on this website, with commenters posting diatribes pinning all sorts of ulterior motives on authors and other commenters.

There is also a more subtle form of incivility that goes on. There are many who come to Personal Liberty Digest and log in under multiple names in order to carry on arguments with their alter egos or others in an effort to disrupt legitimate debate on this site. It happens more frequently than most of you probably realize.

Again, it is the refuge of the ignorant to interrupt or shut down debate when he finds his position or opinion cannot be defended with fact or reason.

But incivility in political discourse is not new. And anyone who takes an honest look at American history understands this.

Thomas Jefferson once said, “It has been a source of great pain to me to have met with so many among [my] opponents who had not the liberality to distinguish between political and social opposition; who transferred at once to the person, the hatred they bore to his political opinions.”

It pains many of us still, because as long as this practice continues we will be opposing one another rather than mounting opposition to those in positions of power who continue to steal our freedoms by passing unConstitutional laws and steal our wealth by debasing our currency.

Arming Criminals To Disarm Americans

If any remain under the delusion that the government doesn’t work covertly and break its own laws to achieve its own nefarious ends, that delusion should be dispelled once and for all with revelation by a Federal agent that the United States Justice Department ordered agents to sit idly by as weapons were smuggled into Mexico for use by drug cartels and criminal gangs.

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms senior agent John Dodson told CBS News that he and his fellow agents in the Phoenix office were ordered to do just that to see where the guns would end up. They ended up killing U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry on Dec. 14, 2010.

Dodson told the news organization that he and other senior agents confronted their supervisors many times over the practice. Their answer, according to Dodson, “If you’re going to make an omelet, you’ve got to break some eggs.” The operation, Dodson was told, was approved by higher-ups the Justice Department.

The Los Angeles Times reported that 1,765 guns were sold to suspected smugglers during a 15-month period of the investigation, dubbed Operation Fast and Furious. Of those, 797 were recovered on both sides of the border, including 195 in Mexico after they were used in crimes.

“With the number of guns we let walk, we’ll never know how many people were killed, raped, robbed,” he told The Times. “There is nothing we can do to round up those guns. They are gone.”

More than 15,000 people died last year in Mexico’s drug wars and from criminal acts by Mexican gangs. And some of those gangs routinely cross into the United States to commit crimes.

Meanwhile, the President Barack Obama administration and many on the Left use the growing gun violence in Mexico to push for stricter gun laws in the United States.

How Your Sleep Disorder Can Trash Your Diet!

According to the London Sleep Centre, about 6 percent to 8 percent of males over age 50 suffer from sleep apnea, while about 4 percent of females over 50 suffer from the disorder.

The American Sleep Apnea Association defines obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) as a disorder that results in the soft tissues in the back of your throat temporarily collapsing and causing repeated interruptions in your breathing. When the airway is obstructed, the brain briefly arouses you in order to signal you to resume breathing, therefore resulting in fragmented or poor sleep patterns.

A new Harvard study reveals that OSA patients eat a less healthy diet than people without the disorder. Test results showed participants with OSA consumed nine extra grams of saturated fat and 88 extra milligrams of cholesterol each day.

Researchers believe this may result in the increased risk of cardiovascular disease in OSA patients. Increased blood pressure levels have also been reported in OSA patients.

Be sure to observe your sleep patterns and talk with your physician about your individual risks for sleep apnea. By treating the symptoms early you can avoid other related health problems such as memory lapses, weight gain, sexual dysfunction and headaches.

The Makeover Is Almost Complete

There will be wailing, weeping and teeth gnashing in Washington, D.C., in the coming weeks as the elected elites in Congress posture and moan about potentially cutting Federal spending.

Republicans will puff themselves up, declaring they are doing the will of those who went to the polls in November, 2010. “Look at us,” they’ll say. “We’ve made drastic cuts and are on the way to fiscal sanity.”

Democrats will cry foul. “You’re hurting old people, starving children, giving tax breaks to the wealthy, you evil Republicans,” Democrats will say. “How can you be so mean… so heartless?”

It’s all a fraud and a ruse for public consumption. No significant cuts will be made. In the end, nothing will change.

Weeper of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) has already surrendered on his insignificant cuts, negotiating himself down from $100 billion to $61 billion — out of a $3.6 trillion budget. Boehner’s retreat has sparked calls for his head by one Tea Party group.

The reality is Republican elected elites have no more interest in cutting Federal spending than Democrat elected elites. They made this plain when they promised pre-election to cut back to George W. Bush spending levels and cooed about how smart they were.

That’s not good enough for much — if not most — of the Republican-leaning electorate. They’re the middle class; the folks that bear the bulk of the nation’s tax burden, and will bear even more, if the elites have their way.

The middle class — tired of supporting the parasite class that makes up about 50 percent of the population, tired of bailing out “too big to fail” institutions and tired of an elected class that enriches itself off government — has sent a message that government is bloated… that it doesn’t work… that it needs to be reformed. They’ve shouted the message loudly, but the elected elites don’t take them seriously.

The middle class is being destroyed. When Federal, State and local taxes are added together more than half of the middle class worker’s paycheck goes to satisfy the government leviathan.

It’s almost impossible for a family to survive on one income, so both spouses have to go to work and farm the kid-raising duties off on a stranger at a daycare. But often that’s not enough and the husband or wife has to have a second job — and a greater tax burden.

Food prices rise. Oil prices rise. Making ends meet becomes a fantasy. Credit cards are tapped to keep up. Home equity lines are tapped to keep up, and the debt piles on.

But the elected elites aren’t concerned with the plight of the middle class. They cater to their corporate masters, to unions and to bureaucracies.

Federal subsidies go to foreign governments and foreign banks. Money goes to prop up dictators in foreign lands. Special tax breaks and subsidies go to large corporate farms and large corporations — perks that small farms and businesses don’t get. Bailouts and stimulus programs have finalized the transition of America from a free-market economy into a fascist corporatocracy. Sweetheart deals are made in back rooms and corporate CEOs get cushy appointments in the administration and companies rake in trillions of dollars in government contracts.

The appetite of the military-industrial complex continues to be sated with the blood of American service men and women and fiat money printed by the Federal Reserve. Overburdensome regulations and perplexing tax laws stifle innovation, create stumbling blocks for entrepreneurs and encourage businesses to take their jobs overseas.

As Republicans preach austerity they are nickel and diming us. They pick a little here and little there but make no move to eliminate unnecessary, unConstitutional and harmful government programs and agencies. They don’t mention cuts in corporate welfare. They don’t mention drawing down the war machine, paring back military bases and reducing empire America.

And President Barack Obama tries to pile on more socialistic, central planning-style spending programs while promising to cut government spending. It’s all doublespeak.

Neither Republicans nor Democrats have broached meaningful welfare reform. So-called entitlements are sacrosanct. The parasite class continues to bleed the host — the producers — white.

Never mind that the War on Poverty, like the War on Drugs, has hurt rather than helped the middle and lower classes. Huge sums of money spent on feckless programs to “help” the underprivileged and “get drugs off the street” have led to a breakdown of the family in some social strata and the incarceration of a large of number of people for victimless crimes.

Neither Republicans nor Democrats have broached the idea of tax reform, except in the context of raising the Federal taxes individuals pay — particularly those who through hard work and an entrepreneurial spirit have managed to exceed an arbitrary threshold that socialist-leaning politicians have decided makes one rich — and in instituting a value-added tax.

We have a system where the nation’s largest corporations pay no tax at all.

Bank of America, one of the many recipients of the government largess under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), paid zero Federal taxes in 2009, but did pay its top executives millions.

Citigroup, also a TARP recipient, paid a grand total of zero taxes for the third quarter of 2010, but paid John Havens, the head of the company’s investment bank, $9.5 million.

Boeing, recently the recipient of a $35 billion government contract to build tankers for the military and a regular government contractor that receives billions of dollars in government contracts annually, paid zero Federal taxes from 2008 to 2010.

General Electric — whose CEO Jeffrey Immelt is on the list of Barack’s closest friends and recently landed a gig on a White House economic advisory board — filed 7,000 tax returns and still paid nothing to the Federal treasury. Immelt was paid $9.89 million in 2009.

Wells Fargo, which was able to exploit the tax codes by writing off the losses it accrued through the government-mandated purchase of Wachovia, paid zero taxes. However, Wells Fargo’s CEO received a salary of $5.6 million paid in cash and stock and stock awards of more than $13 million. [1]

In the United States, the top 50 percent of income earners pay 96.4 percent of the income tax, according to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation. This progressive income tax system is right out of Karl Marx’s manifesto and the goal of the progressives — Republican and Democrat alike — is to roil the economy to get more into the class of leaches. Progressives want an electorate eager for handouts so they can appear benevolent as they transfer wealth.

The elected elites succeeded in creating a soft tyranny. But they fear their subjects. So, with the USA Patriot Act and through the Department of Homeland Security and its increasingly invasive program of screening, scanning, poking, prodding, watching and questioning, they work toward establishing a hard tyranny such as that seen under harsh dictatorships.

The makeover of America is almost complete.


[1] http://thinkprogress.org/2011/02/26/main-street-tax-cheats/