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A note of thanks to those who buy a book: As an independent writer, book sales are a substantial part of my income. I receive no funding from any university, trust fund, think-tank, shadowy C.I.A. front or government agency. Thank you for throwing caution and rationality to the winds and buying my work.

       
  155 pages, $20 print, $9.95 Kindle (2014)

Ever since my first summer job decades ago, I've been chasing financial security. Not win-the-lottery, Bill Gates riches (although it would be nice!), but simply a feeling of financial control. I want my financial worries to if not disappear at least be manageable and comprehensible.

And like most of you, the way I've moved toward my goal has always hinged not just on having a job but a career.

You don't have to be a financial blogger to know that "having a job" and "having a career" do not mean the same thing today as they did when I first started swinging a hammer for a paycheck.

Even the basic concept "getting a job" has changed so radically that jobs--getting and keeping them, and the perceived lack of them--is the number one financial topic among friends, family and for that matter, complete strangers.

So I sat down and wrote this book: Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy.

It details everything I've verified about employment and the economy, and lays out an action plan to get you employed.

I am proud of this book. It is the culmination of both my practical work experiences and my financial analysis, and it is a useful, practical, and clarifying read.

Introduction and Section One

 
Get a Job, Build a Real Career
and Defy a Bewildering Economy
(print, $20)
(Kindle, $9.95)
       
  180 pages, $20 print, $9.95 Kindle edition (2013)

With the soaring cost of higher education, has the value a college degree been turned upside down? College tuition and fees are up 1000% since 1980. Half of all recent college graduates are jobless or underemployed, revealing a deep disconnect between higher education and the job market.

It is no surprise everyone is asking: Where is the return on investment? Is the assumption that higher education returns greater prosperity no longer true? And if this is the case, how does this impact you, your children and grandchildren?

We must thoroughly understand the twin revolutions now fundamentally changing our world: The true cost of higher education and an economy that seems to re-shape itself minute to minute.

The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy clearly describes the underlying dynamics at work - and, more importantly, lays out a new low-cost model for higher education: how using digital technology will enable a revolution in higher education that dramatically lowers costs while expanding the opportunities for students of all ages.

The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy provides clarity and optimism in a period of the greatest change our educational systems and society have seen, and offers everyone the tools needed to prosper in the Emerging Economy.

Read the Foreword, Chapter 1 and the Table of Contents

 
The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy
The Revolution in Higher Education (print $20)

Kindle edition $9.95
       
  213 pages, $24 print, $9.95 Kindle edition (2012)

Things are falling apart—that is obvious. But why are they falling apart? The reasons are complex and global.

Our economy and society have structural problems that cannot be solved by adding debt to debt. We are becoming poorer, not just from financial over-reach, but from fundamental forces that are not easy to identify or understand. We will cover the five core reasons why things are falling apart:
1. Debt and financialization
2. Crony capitalism and the elimination of accountability
3. Diminishing returns
4. Centralization
5. Technological, financial and demographic changes

Increasingly complex systems weakened by diminishing returns collapse under their own weight and are replaced by systems that are simpler, faster and affordable. If we cling to the old ways, our system will disintegrate. If we want sustainable prosperity rather than collapse, we must embrace a new model that is Decentralized, Adaptive, Transparent and Accountable (DATA).

We are not powerless. Not accepting responsibility and being powerless are two sides of the same coin: once we accept responsibility, we become powerful.

Read the Introduction and Table of Contents

 
Why Things Are Falling Apart
and What We Can Do About It (print $24)

(Kindle edition $9.95)
       
  225 pages, $25 print, $9.95 Kindle edition (2012)

We are like passengers on the Titanic ten minutes after its fatal encounter with the iceberg: though our financial system seems unsinkable, its reliance on debt and financialization has already doomed it.

We cannot know when the Central State and financial system will destabilize, we only know they will destabilize. We cannot know which of the State’s fast-rising debts and obligations will be renounced; we only know they will be renounced in one fashion or another.

The process of the unsustainable collapsing and a new, more sustainable model emerging is called revolution.

Rather than being powerless, we hold the fundamental building blocks of power. We need neither permission nor political change to liberate ourselves. A powerless individual becomes powerful when he renounces the lies and complicity that enable the doomed Status Quo’s dominance.

Read the Introduction and Chapter One

 
Resistance, Revolution, Liberation:
A Model for Positive Change (print $25)

(Kindle edition $9.95)
       
  234 pages, $25.85 print, $9.85 Kindle edition (2011)

The next 20 years will not be a simple extension of the previous 20 years. Everything that is currently seen as permanent--the Savior State, the financialized economy, cheap energy-- is visibly unsustainable. Status Quo personal finance strategies--"buy and hold" and global diversification--are doomed by their reliance on increasingly unstable global markets and a myopic focus on the rearview mirror--the recent past is no longer an accurate guide to the future.

This comprehensive guide offers practical ideas for everyone, from those seeking to protect 401Ks or IRAs to entrepreneurs to those with more time than money to invest in their future. This book offers a broad spectrum of strategies for investing your human, social and financial capital in low-risk, decentralized, diversified assets that increase resiliency and self-reliance.

Topics include systemic risk, the spectrum of potential investments, gold, hedging, relative value, hybrid work, income streams, ecosystems of local enterprise and the essential tools of lower-risk investing. The solution in one word: Localism. Read the Introduction and Chapter One.

 

An Unconventional Guide to Investing in Troubled Times (print $25.85)
(Kindle edition $9.85)

       
  396 pages, $19.95 print, $9.95 Kindle edition (2009)

This indispensable guide to the next 20 years of global turmoil and transformation weaves the full spectrum of disciplines--history, political economy, ecology, energy, marketing, investing, health, and the psychology of happiness-- into a uniquely comprehensive understanding that offers every thinking person practical principles for not just surviving but prospering in the decades ahead.

If we are entering a multi-decade Great Transformation, then as prudent as it is to stockpile a few months of food and supplies, that will obviously not get us through the Transformation, either as individuals or as communities. We need a thoroughly integrated understanding before we can fashion a response that will make the Transformation a positive one. Our goal is a sustainable, productive economy and a full appreciation of the fundamental rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

The first task is replacing the crumbling intellectual framework of the status quo system with one grounded in reality. There are five distinct issues to sort out:
1. The elements of human nature which lend themselves to cycles and manipulation
2. The nature of the energy, financial and environmental trends/crises which are heralding the Great Transformation
3. The nature of the negative and positive feedback loops which determine the system's stability and direction
4. The responses which have a high probability of making the Transformation positive
5. The nature of future work and the principles best suited to prospering during the Great Transformation
Survival+ home page; Introduction; Overreach and Inequality.

 

Survival+: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation (print, $19.95)
(Kindle edition, $ 9.95)

       
  134 pages, $9.95 print, $5.95 Kindle edition (2010)

Reader feedback persuaded me that a 400-page book is a daunting prospect for many, and so I decided to create Survival+ The Primer that is only a third the length (48,000 words, 134 pages) of the full version. While it is impossible to distill all the ideas into a short primer, we can at least address these key understandings:
-- The status quo of a rapidly expanding Savior State in thrall to global cartels is heading for inevitable insolvency
-- Though the devolution and insolvency of the debt-based status quo is driven by large-scale forces, the opportunities will be small-scale and open to individuals, families and communities.
-- Though the forces at work are global, we are not powerless. As individuals, we have the power to create our own transformation.

This can be expressed very simply: we are what we do every day.

In a very real way, we "vote" for our health by what we choose to put in our mouths three times a day, just as we "vote" on which kinds of food and companies we support when we buy the food.

Every purchase we make is a "vote" for or against a high-cost, debt-serf lifestyle that serves the interests of Power Elites and cartels.

Every hour we spend "consuming entertainment" is a "vote" in favor of passivity, powerlessness and propaganda. Every time we turn off the mass media we are "voting" for our own productivity and well-being. Survival+ home page

 

Survival+ The Primer (print, $9.95)
(Kindle edition, $5.95)

       
  73 pages, $10.99 print, $5.00 Kindle edition (2008)

For better or for worse--and we all have some choice as to which of the two we will experience--the world is entering an extended era of disruption caused by the intersection of four mutually reinforcing cycles:

1. Peak oil, or the depletion cycle/end-game of the global economy's complete dependence on inexpensive, readily available petroleum/fossil fuels.

2. The cycle of credit expansion and contraction (approximately 60-70 years), which is now beginning the transition from unsustainable credit expansion (bubble) to renunciation of debt (credit collapse) and global depression.

3. The generational cycle (4 generations or approximately 80 years) of American history which leads to nation-changing social, political and economic upheaval. (The American Revolution: 1781 +80 years = Civil War, 1861 +80 years = 1941, World War II + 80 years = 2021)

4. The 100+ year cycle of price inflation and stagnation of wages' purchasing-power which began around 1901 is now reaching the final stage of widespread turmoil, shortages, famine, war, conflict and crisis. Read Chapter One.

 

Weblogs & New Media: Marketing in Crisis (print, $10.99)
(Kindle edition $5.00)

 


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Copyright 2013 Charles Hugh Smith all rights reserved in all media. No reproduction in any media in any format (text, audio, video/film, web) without written permission of the author.
 
                                                                         
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