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What will you sacrifice to Shrug?

Posted by Technocracy 4 years, 5 months ago to Culture
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We have had a few discussions and even some planning on creating one or more Gulches for ourselves.

The undiscussed side of this is a basic issue....Technology.
A high technology lifestyle requires a high technology infrastructure and technology base.

Most if not all of us would not be looking for subsistence living without all the conveniences we are used to, but we would sacrifice some of them.

What will you give up?

Modern plumbing?
Running Water?
24/7 unlimited electricity?
Modern communications?
Amazon?

Atlas shrugged was a novel projecting from the technology base of the 40s and early 50s.

What time period would you be willing to roll back to in your gulch?

Keeping in mind the infrastructure needed to support it


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  • Posted by Zenphamy 4 years, 5 months ago
    I'm not sure I see that we would have to give up technology. There would be ways to stay connected to the rest of the world. Gulchers are some pretty intelligent and innovative people.
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    • Posted by scojohnson 4 years, 4 months ago
      It would be easy to strike a deal with a telecom for a microwave or satellite link, pool the resources and up the bandwidth to something that would meet the needs of the town.

      Plumbing - easy... whether or not the discharge is as pure as the driven snow is one thing, but drain fields have been used in rural areas for a hundred years or more...

      Power - solar/wind already works fine for off-grid living, maybe some minor generator inputs, depending on the climate. Designing the town to be energy efficient is a big key - only use LED lighting or candle/flame, no electric appliances - stick to propane or nat-gas or wood heat, etc.

      Picking the location and climate is really more important... for example, in a mediterranean location (rare I know for a project like this), heating and A/C become irrelevant, but the long-term savings in infrastructure is pretty substantial.

      Equally important would be a town-wide cyber privacy/protection to avoid IRS/governmental prying eyes. This is pretty simple, it just has to be non-standard / non-commercial. "Store-bought" stuff is compromised at the source (by the NSA), customized open source would be a quick & relatively protected method.

      I rebuilt my own house over the last few years specifically for efficiency and something close to off-grid (I have a grid-tie, but I could easily be off-grid, but that last 10% gets expensive). New plumbing - PEX with push/fit made the plumbing in the 1970s rancher better than new. Heating - went from 70% efficiency to 97.5%, I don't even need a metal flue, it just uses PVC because the heat output is only at about 80 degrees going out the top. Electrical is down 90% between solar panels, 100% LED, switched from electric to gas wherever I could.

      Most of the things it takes to do this are pretty readily available and even easier if the structures are very modest (I was fighting against a 2400 sq foot single story with vaulted/chalet roof and 57 windows). Keep it to a simple cabin and I wouldn't need any external connections.

      The only challenge is the propane or natural gas, you need to bring that in somehow, it would be the one thing that is very difficult. You can use wood for a lot of stuff, but creates its own challenges (hard to miss all the trees being cut down and you lose your natural beauty and cover).
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      • Posted by scojohnson 4 years, 4 months ago
        Realistically, somewhere in Alaska would be ideal... substantial solar resources in summer, and plenty of resources for the winter. Closer to the water means moderation of the climate (a little) and enormous food/income opportunities that can be hidden in plain sight, as well as attracting the rugged / survival types that can live off grid.
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  • Posted by waytodude 4 years, 4 months ago
    I've read several of these posts. I'm amazed how many believe the Gulch is not possible. I left the city and started way before I even knew about Ayn Rand. I have a small ranch 26 miles from neatest gallon of milk. I'm working every day on becoming more self sufficient. If you want something bad enough you have to become the producer and complaining about how it's not possible. If your a true producer you would say I CAN.
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  • Posted by Eudaimonist 4 years, 4 months ago
    It doesn't seem worth it to "shrug" at this point. The nation may have problems, but it doesn't have the sort of problems that necessitate shrugging. I see little problem in being a part of everyday society.

    Consider the following from her Playboy interview:

    PLAYBOY: Throughout your work you argue that the way in which the contemporary world is organized, even in the capitalist countries, submerges the individual and stifles initiative. In Atlas Shrugged, John Galt leads a strike of the men of the mind -- which results in the collapse of the collectivist society around them. Do you think the time has come for the artists, intellectuals and creative businessmen of today to withdraw their talents from society in this way?

    RAND: No, not yet. But before I explain, I must correct one part of your question. What we have today is not a capitalist society, but a mixed economy -- that is, a mixture of freedom and controls, which, by the presently dominant trend, is moving toward dictatorship. The action in Atlas Shrugged takes place at a time when society has reached the stage of dictatorship. When and if this happens, that will be the time to go on strike, but not until then.

    [...]

    RAND: A dictatorship has four characteristics: one-party rule, executions without trial for political offenses, expropriation or nationalization of private property, and censorship. Above all, this last. So long as men can speak and write freely, so long as there is no censorship, they still have a chance to reform their society or to put it on a better road. When censorship is imposed, that is the sign that men should go on strike intellectually, by which I mean, should not cooperate with the social system in any way whatever.

    http://www.ellensplace.net/ar_pboy.html

    As bad as things might be, they aren't that bad yet.
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    • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
      Society may not be quite at the point where her four flags are met, however we are closer than many realize.

      1. One party rule - The two parties talk a good game about their differences. However on the output side where the rest of us live, the effects are the same....more and more intrusive government, larger government, more taxes taken, ever expanding "social programs" that effectively mean whatever problem is never corrected, but instead becomes frozen in time to maintain the status quo.

      2. Executions without trial for political offenses - I give you that one, no signs of that at all.

      3. expropriation or nationalization of private property - that has been happening all along, federal land grabs for various reasons, imminent domain conflicts, other similar things.

      4. Censorship - Political Correctness is the stalking horse for this. And it chokes off free speech more every day. It is absolutely the most insidious thing they have come up with.

      We aren't there yet, but we are not all that far off either.
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      • Posted by term2 4 years, 4 months ago
        As far as #2 is concerned, I think for all practical purposes, we are there. Maybe there is a trial still, but its rigged as it was in Nazi Germany and in the far eastern countries now. Look at Snowden- what a trial he would have had !! Bradley Manning- that was a trial? So much of what we do can be construed as "terrorist", which will get you dumped in a hole forever. #3 is done thru inflation every minute of every day for years now. #4- I agree that political correctness especially relating to race has gotten really bad. #1- I agree with you on this one. The two parties are two sides of the same coin- they take from some and give to others (just different "others")
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        • Posted by  $  puzzlelady 4 years, 4 months ago
          #2, add drone assassinations, military tribunals, arrest and indefinite detention, torture and prisoner deaths without charges and trials
          #3, add asset forteiture without charges or trials
          #4, where opposition can be termed hate speech that's criminalized
          We're almost there. Just wait till passports get yanked and people won't be allowed to leave the country.

          #1 can be pushed back. Support Our America Initiative's campaign to make debates open to qualified third-party candidates as well.
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      • Posted by strugatsky 4 years, 4 months ago
        Dictatorship and tyranny do not necessarily have to follow the earlier examples. If the goal is not to be brutal for the sake of brutality, but to control, milder, gentler methods are sufficient. If the same effect, compliance, can be achieved by having people loose their jobs, insurance, social stigma, jail - why have physical executions when mental ones are sufficient? Want to test the theory - if you work for any large organization, go make a statement against Osama, the administration or transgenders. See what happens. After the management hoses you down, repeat. See if you start believing in the modern, gentler and kinder executions...
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        • Posted by  $  jlc 4 years, 4 months ago
          I would step back from your excellent points and comment that the same way the technology of the current time does not replicate the tech of AS, so the methods of control that are available to control people are not the same as they were in the 40's and 50's.

          The very topic of this thread is a good indicator of that: John Galt never had to deal with whether you could buy stuff on Amazon in the Gulch. Nonetheless, the fact that one can obtain encrypted and secret avatars for communication, Bitcoins for payment, etc means that the government has not tightened the noose completely.

          Jan
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      • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
        I agree with others that the problems don't yet necessitiate shrugging. However:
        "2. Executions without trial for political offenses - I give you that one, no signs of that at all. "
        The gov't killed a US citizen abroad b/c they thought he would be difficult to arrest and because his alleged motive was political. They don't do it for people who murder for insurance money, a relationship dispute, or a random serial killer pathology. This is not 100% what Rand was saying, but it's inching closer to an execution without trial for political offenses.
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        • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
          Participating in an extremist group that supports and performs violent attacks stretches the definition of political offense beyond reason. Assuming you are talking about the recipients of Obama's drone program.
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          • Posted by XenokRoy 4 years, 4 months ago
            I would agree except for one thing. We have not declared war on anyone. We have no enemies we are at war with. Without congress declaring war on terrorism against the US we are simply killing people and our government is simply a despot selecting people for death because they think they are a problem.

            Get a declaration of war and your statement makes sense, without that step from congress its just murder.
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      • Posted by teri-amborn 4 years, 4 months ago
        Seizure of property without due process is a type of "execution".
        Having your life zeroed-out and starting over again because someone accuses you falsely and decimates your life through using the legal system against you, your life and your freedom is the equivalent of murder.
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        • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
          I understand and acknowledge your point in this. I disagree as to the degree of damage.

          It does not meet the standards of murder for me because life was not lost.

          Depending up the circumstances murder would be less painful and far kinder, I see your point, but won't agree to that equivalence.
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          • Posted by teri-amborn 4 years, 4 months ago
            I'm happy that you haven't had the experience.
            It takes time from you...and time is all that we have...hence shortening your life deliberately and prematurely. That is the definition of the word murder.
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      • Posted by xthinker88 4 years, 4 months ago
        I would also add that AR expressed the concept of totalitarianism as the one she was most familiar with. If we consider the more recent ideas of "soft totalitarianism" some not all of her criteria would be necessary.

        I posted an article on it elsewhere in the gulch.
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    • Posted by DeanStriker 4 years, 4 months ago
      Sorry, things are way beyond "that bad" today. It fell off the wagon in 2008, but we've seen that brainwashing works.

      So we've already "shrugged". I might add that it happened for me about 1995. I'll add that I stopped Supporting the Beast about 25 years ago.
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  • Posted by  $  terrycan 4 years, 4 months ago
    One of the reasons for going to the Gulch is to accelerate technology. The book addressed this with the Doctor in the Gulch. AS II had a cool delta wing aircraft with VTO. That scene made a statement. The destroyer had superior technology. As the socialist world was rolling backwards the Gulch was advancing.
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    • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
      Yes. One stated goal of the moochers was for things not to change, for no one business to stop producting or produce something that disrupts other businesses. So it's more likely that the world will develop slower while a loose network of Gulches develop game changing technologies and goes from being a backwater to a regional power to a superpower in a few hundred years, like the colonies in North America. I bet that notion sounded weird in colonial times too.
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      • Posted by airfredd22 4 years, 4 months ago
        Re: Circuit Guy,

        You are correct in your vision of the residents of the Gulch. The whole point was that those of true superior intellect and work ethic gather in a place where they are free to develop whatever skills they have to the extent of their desire.

        I am not referring to the usual elites who only are elites in their own mind without true accomplishments. The Gulch is meant to represent true freedom in all its forms.

        The perfect example was the United States during the first 200 years of its existence when we developed from an agricultural economy to become the industrial and technological giant of the world during a time of true economic freedom. Sadly this freedom has town been turned upside down.

        Fred Speckmann
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    • Posted by term2 4 years, 4 months ago
      Interesting that in AS#3, prob for budgetary reasons, they had cars with colorado license plates !!! Why would people in the gulch need colorado license places (current ones !). It was hidden from the society, or at least thats what they said.

      One of the things I liked about X-men was they did have advanced technology. The Gulch would have it too, but a lot of technology is founded on an advanced infrastructure, which would not be there for awhile.
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  • Posted by  $  RobertFl 4 years, 4 months ago
    You don't have to give up technology, only collective infrastructure. You can have plumbing, just not city water. You can have electricity, just not commercial power generation.
    I don't have to buy commercial convenience foods, I can make my own. It's a matter of, are you dependent on that provided technology? I've been slowly turning these things off as much as I can while still having to live/work in society. I can do without TV. I like YouTube because it's such a wealth of information, but I can find books. As long as it's there, I will use it.
    We don't even really need high speed internet, or phone lines, we could actually create that ourselves with Amateur radio services - it's still tech, but it isn't dependent upon an establish, commercial, gov't regulated infrastructure. Giving up "tech" is relative. A shovel is high-tech compared to digging with your bare hands.
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  • Posted by Bennudo 4 years, 5 months ago
    A good point, but who says we need to really roll back at all? Depending on the size and scale of the Gulch, much of what we love can be either adapted to specifically support the Gulch or imported from the outside while it lasts. We've got enough network savy members that we could easily use some proxies to mask or scramble our origin and simply create an industry where a member of the gulch is the one to manage interface with the outside during the year by paying in their currency and receiving the deliveries for later delivery to the Gulch. There is not much that I would need to leave behind considering I can improvise systems and devices to provide everything that I would want. I having actually been talking to some likeminded friends about long-term goals where we have actually begun some planning for pooling resources and developing our own mini-Gulch to settle down. While it may seem like a far-flung ideal to many, if all of us here in the Gulch decided to mobilize our desires, we could likely develop a significant Gulch for ourselves.
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    • Posted by 4 years, 5 months ago
      One of the big divides over creating a Gulch is whether or not to be completely isolated from society.

      The subject of this thread is really an avenue for discussion about that choice.
      If you choose isolation that automatically produces limits.
      If you stay within society, that also puts a different group of limits on you.

      Personally I don't believe true isolation is achievable or optimal, the numbers just are not there.

      We seem to mostly want to maintain something approximating our current standards of living, and that mitigates against total isolation without very large numbers.
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      • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
        Yes. One reason capitalism works is people can focus on producing what they're good at and trade it for things other people are good at. It will work best if we have the world of people, with their unique skills/strengths, to trade with.
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        • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
          Whoever disagrees with capitalism should say so aloud.
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          • Posted by khalling 4 years, 4 months ago
            Well you actively support a party whose policies weaken capitalism. You support universal healthcare which requires mandatory participation or be fined. What was capitalistic about that?
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            • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
              "you actively support a party whose policies weaken capitalism."
              This is sort-of true b/c I support Democrats and Republicans, and the parties sometimes do things to weaken capitalism, even though I lobby them not to.
              "You support universal healthcare which requires mandatory participation or be fined."
              Partly true. Is your point about me personally or about these issues? I would love to talk about gov't subsidy of healthcare, health insurance mandate, etc, but if the topic is who is a more rigtheous person, that's pointless. It's unlikely one of us will be swayed and convinced he's evil; and I would be fundamentally opposed to that goal anyway.
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              • Posted by khalling 4 years, 4 months ago
                what republicans do you support? You have a republican governor. Do you support Scott Walker?
                to your second comment-"partly true" You supported the President. The largest, most liberty sucking policy change made in 60 years was under President Obama. what's partly about that? This is propagandizing
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                • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
                  I'm not even playing the political game. I make no money from politics/gov't, and I don't need a narrative to blame my failures on.

                  It almost seems like you've been in the world of politics so long, that you can't imagine anything but second-handers getting behind other people or wanting a reaction from people. It must be, you apprently think, a strategem for some group or another. It appears to scare you to think of someone acting as an individual, not a part of representing some gang. I am certainly WRONG in that impresssion b/c you've said you're categorically against people acting as groups.

                  Note that it's very easy for me to speak my mind outside my industry b/c there's nothing at stake for me. This is someone else's game. All I want out of it is a free and open society. If some issue of integrity hurt my writing or electronics work, that would actually mean something.

                  I would be happy to discuss state policies. I have never met Gov Walker. I think he was right on busting public unions but wrong to sell it as a cost-saving measure and to try to pit people against one another. I am okay with partially privatizing UW, but not if the gov't is going to forbid tuition increases. I suspect my even talking about it would bother you, though, unless you can categorize it into some political interest group rather than some guy's thoughts.

                  Please don't sweat me being wrong about stuff. Otherwise you'll always be upset b/c I have a history of being wrong, like when I wrote those SPY calls a couple days ago.
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    • Posted by  $  terrycan 4 years, 4 months ago
      Sounds like fun. Where would your mini Gulch be?
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      • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
        Example 3 - build a "business community" By this I mean an area for concentration and support of businesses. One of the problems when you start a business that deals in the supply of physical goods to customers is appropriate space for you business.

        A business center with good access to transport (road/rail/air), energy, water, and communications is both a leg up for your business and attracts other businesses to dilute your costs.

        Again, very possible to make pretty self funding where the non-gulch businesses are diluting the costs for the gulch.

        And a nearby neighborhood of residences would not raise any eyebrows.
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      • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
        That would be partially dependent on the face you presented to outsiders to some extent.

        Example 1 - one proposal is to purchase a hotel/ small resort that has either gone under or is close to doing so. You then rehab it re-open, but this time with some major changes to purpose. If it is done as part short term rental for vacationers/tourists and part permanent residents, it can even be self funding. Permanent residents would of course have to "buy in" in one form or another.

        While possible almost anywhere, to be a paying proposition you need to be in a location that draws that short term clientele.
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        • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
          Ideally you'd combine all 3: a hotel/conference center with attached business incuabator, with a gate around it. What would make it amazing is if it could be close to a population center but with the host country somehow granting (b/c that's how they see it) a high degree of autonomy.
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          • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
            Nothing says you cannot start smaller and grow from there.

            The biggest break you would likely be able to get in the US would be on the tax front for a business center nucleus. And depending on the break that could be the difference between doable and not.
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      • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
        Example 2 - build a gated community. This would be in many ways the absolute easiest way to create a physical gulch. Your community would have a membership approval process to screen out the undesired.

        This can be done anywhere technically, but to be effective cover you pick a region where gated communities are already around. This way you don't stick out as a group of oddballs.
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        • Posted by airfredd22 4 years, 4 months ago
          Re: Technocracy,
          The problem with your idea is that you are describing a place only accessible to those already wealthy. A true Gulch needs to be accessible to all those that have skills, but more than that the desire to be free, politically, economically and yes, free to practice their faith if they so desire. Kind of a place once called the United States of America. We already had a Gulch right here if we only chose to restore it by finding and voting into office people who have actually read and understand the Constitution.
          \
          Fred Speckmann
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          • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
            The United States did embody many of the principles of the gulch. You are correct it has become corrupted over the years, with the destruction speeding up more and more in the last half century or so.

            Restoring the US to what it was, is impossible for a lot of reasons. Including the fact that there were many aspects of the US in the 19th and early 20th centuries we would not want back in place now.

            It would be possible to restore some of those principles, and it would be amazing to do so. Which politicians would work to do so though is really a big part of the problem.
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            • Posted by airfredd22 4 years, 4 months ago
              Re: Technocracy,

              You are correct, however, being the eternal optimist that I am, I muat remind everyone of the most important two documents ever written that are at the foundation of this nation. The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

              As an immigrant to this country from under the thumb of Communism in East Germany and having lived her for 56 years, at the age of 67 I would remind everyone that this nation despite its many faults is still the "Shining light upon the hill."

              Our forefathers knew what they were doing and even foresaw the difficulties we would surely encounter.

              Let us not forsake their dream and fight on and remain ever vigilant of those that would destroy this dream.

              Fred Speckmann
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        • Posted by jimslag 4 years, 4 months ago
          If you look at AS, it was essentially a gated community. You could not enter the Gulch unless you were invited by John. So, effectively they were selective in their membership.
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          • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
            I wonder if they were going to kick out anyone who stopped following the oath or kids who rebelled against it. I also wonder how they dealt with criminal behavior. If they just kicked out everyone undesirable, the host country would not like the Gulch siphoning off their most productive and leaving the host country with the troublemakers.
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            • Posted by  $  puzzlelady 4 years, 4 months ago
              Oh, you mean the way the Brits did sending their convicts to Australia? In your example, if there is a host country, it won't matter what it "likes". Brain drains have happened before. To keep their best, the country's leaders need to protect freedoms that make staying a value.
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          • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
            Yes indeed. Equivalent to a gated community with one real difference. That difference being extremely reduced interaction with the outside society, Ragnar, D'Ancona, and John Galt being the interfaces for outside contact.
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            • Posted by  $  puzzlelady 4 years, 4 months ago
              If well selected, there would be no need to kick anyone out later. Shared premises, shared values. And anyone kicked out could become a tattletale, so there goes the security. I am reminded of Jim Jones' commune or the Branch Davidian compound. Or inner-city gangs where apostasy means death.

              The Gulch would have to be invisible to the outside world, or set up its own defense forces. When things get bad enough in the outside world, people will start looting in desperation, and their first targets will be the haves. John Galt probably had laser defenses for the valley, assuming anyone even suspected it existed. With a futuristic motor, all technologies would become possible for the Gulch but not for the outsiders. How else could he override all the TV networks?

              What would be most helpful is to hang in here and keep injecting rational values into the current culture, veering it away from perpetual wars and mutual destruction and cannibalistic social programs. Now consider also that it would take a very tiny push to turn a Gulch, real or virtual, into an ever larger group until it takes on the characteristics of a collective. As it grew, it would take on more and more power, and aim towards increasing its powers, both for its self-preservation and for exerting influence over the rest of the world, if only to make that world more amenable to its own standards. Beware the totalitarian temptation.

              I, too, would cherish having only kindred spirits in my circle, of individuals I can respect, admire and embrace as kin. Not an accidental tribe but a chosen one. I have often pondered whether there is a contradiction between unremitting individualism and the natural human condition of belonging to a group of companions, friends, collaborators. And while one should not live "for the sake of another", it's fine to be voluntarily generous and giving towards individuals who are a value to oneself.

              I find it almost comical how within this forum certain commenters are jumped on and condemned for minor deviations from doctrine. I rather view it as a colony of memes in each person's head reacting against perceived memes in the other's, and like rival dogs those memes rear up for battle. Imagine if that happens in this tiny group, how much more virulent that battle becomes when nation states or religious systems confront each other with millions or even billions of members dragged in.

              Humanity is still on an evolutionary track intellectually and emotionally. Yes, they all need philosophy. Wouldn't it be wonderful if this company could form a critical mass to give it that little push, that butterfly wing flap, into a better direction? We've come too far, too long, to let everything the last half million years have gained be wiped out because we can be made to hate unreasoningly and to kill unconscionably. This is not a time to shrug. It's a time to be objectively rational and do a little genetic engineering in human consciousness, to be the antidote to the deadly ideas dominating our culture.
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        • Posted by jdg 4 years, 4 months ago
          This is legal, but discrimination laws would be abused to prevent it from working. I recall that religious groups have tried to create proprietary communities and have not been allowed.
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      • Posted by Bennudo 4 years, 4 months ago
        As mentioned by someone earlier, I think Alaska would be an ideal spot. Preferably a remote location which creates the initial barrier to entry. The Gulch would be able to invite folks and fly them in, but in the event of societal collapse the distance and environment would help to isolate it from the negative effects. Plenty of room to expand and innovate. Government in the remote regions is minimally intrusive or non-existent so the Gulch would enjoy autonomy. While not perfect in every aspect, it provides a good foundation that could be molded into our desired community.
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        • Posted by  $  jlc 4 years, 4 months ago
          I am neither a warmist nor an icer, but of the two I think that the icers have an edge insofar as being scary is concerned. If you gather somewhere that the weather routinely kills people you are introducing an additional vulnerability into the Gulch.

          Jan
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        • Posted by ewv 4 years, 4 months ago
          Less than 1/2 of 1% of land in Alaska is privately owned. The land is split between the Federal government (including the National Park Service and US Fish & Wildlife Service), the state, and the native corporations (Indian tribes).
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    • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 4 years, 4 months ago
      Agreed. We can have modern conveniences. Depending on how isolated we need to be, the internet and Amazon might also be viable. True isolation is probably not viable given the ability to see the Gulch on weather satellites and the population of the Earth. Mars? Different story.
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  • Posted by iroseland 4 years, 4 months ago
    How about giving up nothing?

    Back in the 40's and 50's going Galt meant something totally different from today. One could still essentially disappear from the world and leave no trace. Even without going Galt there were people who were dropping off the radar.. But that was back in the days before Google earth, satellites, predator drones. In the world we currently live in there is no place left to hide. One could go off to the middle of nowhere and live by subsistence farming. But, for one that would mostly just suck. For another, as soon as you got good enough to actually be making it the very same looters would be there with their hands out. It seems that we should be looking for a solution that allows us to be successful. What if we didn't have to do that here?

    This guy has been making the news, and if he turns out not to be a total crackpot we might have an answer.

    http://www.paresspacewarpresearch.org/

    Right now there are a decent number of G2V class stars within 50 Light Years of here.

    http://www.atlasoftheuniverse.com/50lys....

    Again if he turns out to not be a crackpot then we would need to get probes out there to look for a place that humans can thrive on. Then, we find a way to establish a colony and start terraforming the heck out of it.

    The best route to build Atlantis would be to start over from scratch and simply leave the Looters and Moochers behind.
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    • Posted by  $  jlc 4 years, 4 months ago
      I agree with you philosophically. But I do not think that we are there technologically. (I have been following Miguel Alcubierre's work for a decade or more - since I found out about it. Dr White at NASA has made a mod to Alcubierre's theorum that requires far less energy and is experimenting with micro jumps.) Going to a different planet bypasses the two big problems of making a Gulch: physical security from attack by a nation (if you take over an atoll or some such) or immunity from repressive laws (if you form a Gulch within and existing country).

      I wish we could.

      Jan
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  • Posted by  $  winterwind 4 years, 4 months ago
    Despite comments about camping which resulted in the title "Mrs. Gatsby" [which I often wear proudly, BTW], there is one area on which no one has touched - medical care. Not "wellness checks" or a prescription for an antibiotic for an infection, but care for catastrophic incidents or chronic conditions.

    That is not what I WON'T give up, it is what I CAN'T give up. I am what is termed a "chronic pain patient" - what that means is that I got one of those spines on which the warranty runs out early, and I take narcotics every single day.

    As I think about shrugging [in the go somewhere else sense] I have researched opium poppies, and the process of obtaining the narcotic from the plant is not difficult, just need a good chemist or even someone who can follow directions exactly.

    So my case is covered, at least to my satisfaction, but I know there are other people with other problems who should consider how to deal with them.

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  • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 4 years, 4 months ago
    Or ahead? Let's see. No house, no property, no newspaper, no tv, no radio no cable, no dog, no cat, no malls, no cold calls during supper, no telephone, Make most of my own electricity. Buy fresh vegetables and fruits every day, fresh fish, the rest is way inexpensive compared to your neighborhood, Live in a much safer area. No ice, no snow, no cold weather. The list goes on.....Sometimes going back doesn't mean giving up anything that';s worth having. Amazing how much you don't miss at all.

    Simple. Sell the house and car and TV. Buy a boat and head where the sun is shining.

    Of course there are the occasional tropical revolving storms and a few odds and ends like that but lest I forget.

    NO POLITICAL COMMERCIALS!!!!!!!
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  • Posted by DennisKebrdle 4 years, 4 months ago
    Got to love this post. almost 30 years ago I got off a plane in Caracas, VZ; my wife had bought me Atlas. was carrying it, cover off, and my distributor in VZ walks up to me, smacks his chest and says "franciso D'anconia!" he was hero as reardon was mine. I like the virtual Gulch, and those of us being self sufficient, building up our piles of indepoendence are on the path. the crunch is coming, we'll be ready!
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  • Posted by Herb7734 4 years, 4 months ago
    Too late for me (80). Why must you give up anything? If you all are as clever as you think you are, with all the talent and intelligence I've seen exhibited from this group, there should be no reason to start from scratch. Brainstorm new ideas, implement them, get busy and don't "try" -- DO!
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  • Posted by  $  Temlakos 4 years, 4 months ago
    You mean: what would you give up, to become a charter resident of the Gulch, like Midas Mulligan and Judge Narragansett?

    I still remember my camping skills. Subsistence farming isn't too different from camping. Midas Mulligan started out that way--bought out the valley (probably the Uncompahgre Valley north of the old Million Dollar Highway, which he would have had cut off), built a simple log house, and, I imagine, dug a well so he could subsist on a combined farming and ranching operation. Judge Narragansett agreed to specialize in dairy and chicken farming. Richard Halley planted an orchard.

    Let's not forget, however, that John Galt solved the secret of electrostatic motors. He likely built small motors for the few cabins the valley sported at first. But Dick McNamara would come along and string power lines and lay pipe for water mains and sewers--though I imagine they had to invent some kind of sewage treatment. They *could not* afford to discharge raw sewage into the river. It would have given too important a clue to the outsiders.

    The Amish showed the way. They simply froze their technological embrace at the level that existed when they formed their first communities. If they can do it, so can we.
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  • Posted by wiggys 4 years, 4 months ago
    technocrat, if as I personally believe all hell breaks loose in 10 years there will not be any place to go to that will afford you any comforts in life as you now know them. you will have given up everything.
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    • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
      If that happens I will have to deal with it. It would not be terribly surprising if it did happen, and at that point worrying about your iPod or cable TV is moot.

      A collapse on that order starting in either the US or China would bring down the economy of the entire world, or close enough to make no difference anyway.

      Look at the far reaching effects in 2008, and that was not a full on collapse. A new dark age, much worse than any previous ones.
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  • Posted by Abaco 4 years, 4 months ago
    In my case, it looks like it would be establishing my family in a country far away without any other family around for support. Millions of families have done it before here in America. So, it can be done. With that would probably come some lean times, financially, while I'd establish myself professionally. I'm starting to research that now, actually.
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    • Posted by term2 4 years, 4 months ago
      Think about the idea of a "virtual gulch" instead of a physical gulch, where one replaces the things provided by the society at large today with things traded between like minded people using technology. Living like we want in plain sight. Could even use "gulchbucks" instead of dollars, which were tied to gold for example. If I bought corn that you grew, I could pay in these gold-back certificates, or even the gold itself. Have to be kept quiet of course, and most easily hidden by forming a religion and hiding under the religious exemptions.
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    • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
      Yes, I saw your thread on that.
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      • Posted by Abaco 4 years, 4 months ago
        Getting a couple of our passports updated at this time. I am rethinking that car purchase, starting to think more in terms of logistics... If it happens it will be within the next year or two. Weighing all options.

        Were contacted last night by some close families regarding land in Peru, going in together.
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  • Posted by jdg 4 years, 4 months ago
    To me, a major part of Going Galt would be getting to keep what I'd earned. Thus I would not willingly sacrifice anything I could bring with me.

    Staying connected to the rest of the world would be an issue, depending on how important it was that the Gulch stay hidden. A community hidden like the one in the book would probably need to ban traceable connections of any kind. On the other hand, in a successful new country or seasteading, nobody would need to hide unless they were wanted in some other country (or planned on engaging in activities illegal there, as for instance Ragnar D).
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  • Posted by bz1mcr 4 years, 4 months ago
    I expect the gultch to have newer better technology.
    We have the intelligence to make it better. Surpassing the government crippled corrupt mess should be a no brainer. Shed the shackles and we will flourish!
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  • Posted by  $  blarman 4 years, 4 months ago
    Why don't we see if we can buy a remote island off the coast of Costa Rica? I think there are a couple there where all we have to do are kill off any remaining genetically re-engineered dinosaurs... ;)
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  • Posted by tragicview 4 years, 4 months ago
    While we certainly don't have Galt's miraculous motor, we do have enough technology to get by with small scale power generation. The real trick will be to disguise ourselves from observation like they did in the gulch. Finally, we'll need our own "destroyer" to seek us producers out and get us to go on strike... If it were real, I'd take my family and leave it all behind in a heartbeat.
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  • Posted by term2 4 years, 4 months ago
    This discussion might be moot if our government ruins the US dollar and we get the hyperinflation and resulting martial law that if probably going to come in the future. No country has EVER gotten away with money printing in the end, and no country has printed as much money as the US has (relative to GDP perhaps Japan is up there too). We should starting preparing for that now by grouping together, like in this website.
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    • Posted by jdg 4 years, 4 months ago
      The way to prepare for the collapse of the dollar is to accumulate at least some wealth in forms that don't become worthless when the dollar (and euro) do.

      There was another thread about doing this with precious metals or gems, but that's not really necessary and probably not especially helpful. What I'd rather have when the crisis hits is a paid-for but modest-looking home, in some rural place unlikely to draw looters -- and with a farmstead that can feed my family, and hopefully some friends, without any need for a functioning economy. Then as long as looters don't set up a government nearby that I can't defend myself from, I'll be fine.
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      • Posted by term2 4 years, 4 months ago
        Its harder than it seems to be independent like that on ones own. First of all, the whole farm thing requires not only growing things in a garden, but probably also having animals that you feed, take care of, and butcher. Defense against your neighbors would also be an issue- especially since there are so many socialist leaning people out there who would want your stuff to be available to share with the people in the local town who were in "need". I think the idea of hiding in plain sight is probably more practical. Trade with like minded people using technology to link them together. Using precious metal-backed medium of exchange to buy/sell from like minded people unknown to the government entities. People might call it a cult, but one would be quiet about it and only deal with people who had been checked out and were indeed freedom loving.
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  • Posted by jimslag 4 years, 4 months ago
    Are you planning a third world country? Most of the items you listed are available just about anywhere, except maybe places like N. Korea or Somalia or Iraq and Iran, maybe Syria now. I had most of these items when I lived in the Philippines back in the 80's. Well, maybe not Amazon but I could do without that anyway. My parents just moved to Belize a year ago and my mom says it is just like it was in Wisconsin back in the 50's. No big malls, no WalMart, chip sealed or unpaved roads with a slow speed limit. However they do have running water, electricity, communications, well maybe not the phone. I qualify that in that they have communications in Belize, just not back to the states and that is because of the fact that our communications structure is so different from everybody else's, fault US regulations.
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    • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
      I am not planning a third world country in the least. Saw enough of that in the past, no thank you.

      The concept of Galts Gulch is compelling, else why would most of us spend our time here. I started this thread for discussion on pros and cons and choices that can be made for having a non-virtual gulch.

      This site is already building a virtual gulch for all of us, especially with the new features that have been added of late. At the same time, some people might like to go a bit further beyond virtual.
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      • Posted by blackswan 4 years, 4 months ago
        If we want to maintain our lifestyles, we need to think about resources, meaning minerals and agricultural products. The minerals would enable us to manufacture what we need, and the agricultural products would give us food, clothing, etc. That suggests that we need to build a network of global gulches (you can't economically grow bananas or cotton in Alaska, for example), and that would entail some type of supply chaining system.
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  • Posted by DennisKebrdle 4 years, 4 months ago
    there is nothing needed to be given up, we are where we are. in the gulch JG added power and there is plenty of renewable power source stuff to use. the rest is living ok. look foreward, not back. there is no yesterday only tomorrow
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  • Posted by ISank 4 years, 4 months ago
    What will I give up to shrug?
    While I'm going to try avoid giving anything up, but $25 bottles of wine and $20 cigars may have to be trimmed.
    But until then, Cheers!
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  • Posted by CircuitGuy 4 years, 4 months ago
    Contrary to giving up stuff, I imagine the Gulch bringing new stuff to the world.
    1. Gulch org convinces some gov't to create a "free-trade zone" or something in a remote region. Gov't says yes b/c they are not collecting any taxes there as it is, so they're not giving up anything.
    2. Lower taxes and fewer gov't rules drives capital and innovative people to the Gulch. They invent stuff like nanofibers that could be used to build building miles high and strings of DNA that cause cancer cells to self-destruct.
    3. Investors and Gulch residents get rich, but looters want a cut of it. It's not fair, looters say, to take the best and the brightest people and the capital investment, leaving traditional nations stuck with the social problems.
    4. Gulch is in a Mexican standoff with investors and their nation states, leaving the Gulch in a position of tenuous peace and freedom.
    5. Other settlements model themselves after the Gulch. Some nation states initiate some libertarian reforms for the practical reason that they work. Modeling gov't on the Gulch becomes a fact of life like the US Constitution. Not everyone does it. Most places do a watered-down version. But the world has a level of liberty that would have seemed like a dream to their great grandparents living in the 21st century.
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    • Posted by term2 4 years, 4 months ago
      Hard to do I think because there are so many "socialists" out there who would band together snd simply take over a successful gulch by force. How do you defend against a nuclear bomb?
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      • Posted by 4 years, 4 months ago
        socialists and for that matter communists or any other collectivist would go with control rather than conquer or destroy as a first resort.

        After all if you slay the golden goose, no more eggs are laid.

        An attack of force would have to be defended the same way as throughout history, reply in kind.

        A nuclear bomb? seriously, that type of comment is very trollish
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  • Posted by handyman 4 years, 4 months ago
    A geographically defined Galt's Gulch seems overwhelmingly unrealistic in today's world. What is much more achievable is a GG-oriented association of individuals (dare I say society or community?) without regard to geographic boundaries. With this type of association, you steer your business and social relationships toward those who share your values. The extent of relationships and transactions that can take place in that paradigm are limited only by your creative thought process. The practicality, functionality and satisfaction of such an arrangement would seem to require a certain "critical mass." I'm not sure what that number is in a given locality, but likely would vary by location and characteristics of individuals involved.
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    • Posted by freedomforall 4 years, 4 months ago
      While I respect your optimistic opinion, I think it more likely that the state continues to accumulate big data on your association until they have enough to raid all of the "economic terrorists known as objectivists." The remaining members of the association go on being treated as serfs forever. That is no more a solution than this Gulch.
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