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If I found a cash pallet ($24 million) hidden by drug dealers, how can I use it without getting caught? Assuming the individuals involved in the illegal dealings are dead, how can I turn this money into legitimate funds without raising a red flag?
As a preface to readers: this is HYPOTHETICAL.Hypothetical-1. of, based on, or serving as a hypothesis. 2. a hypothetical proposition or statement.The fact that you have to tell adults…with computers, who can ostensibly read higher than an 8th grade level that something is hypothetical online now says far more about people than the internet.Money FoundThis will take time to work out, you have to know that as soon as you’re standing there looking at the pallet. If possible, sit down with some paper and a pen next to the pallet and write out your first 10 steps. You’ll need a basic map before you launch into action. 1 hour to plan.I agree with: tell no one. Ever.Your cover story is a dying relative in California. Go, within 3 days. You need a 3 day head start. All of us have about a week or so before jobs, family, friends would inquire about us. Buy a burner phone—you lost yours at the airport and call a short list of people every week, destroy burner, burn the burner to a smokey, plastic cinder. Always call from a new burner from a new location. If possible leave them on vehicles heading THAT way. North, west, south, east, any direction you’re not going. Trains, buses, planes.If you do it right you can even reappear in your old life in 5 years after you have secreted, moved and secured the cash…..elsewhere.My HYPOTHETICAL logic to this scenario and the action is that you can’t be absolutely sure that the money is untraceable or won’t be missed. Assume, in this HYPOTHETICAL scenario, that someone, somewhere, even if all of the drug dealers are dead, knows about the money.Year 1Logistics and MovementFirst issue: how much does $1 million weigh?$1M in $100 bills = 22.05 pounds.$1M in $20 bills = 110.5 pounds.So it’s 24x the above. Let’s say it’s probably $20s. So half a ton. 24 trips to move it. You’ll need a van or a U Haul truck.I’d get boxes, duffel bags and rent a car/SUV. Rent a storage room. You have about a day to move it. I would make a stop at a motel room and drop off a few duffel bags, just in case I returned and something was going on—-I still got 10%-20%. $2–$4 million in the hotel room, this might be my expenses cash anyway.Let’s say I get it all. All $24 million safely into the truck.Go back to the hotel room and rest, make a reservation at another hotel. Find a car/truck to buy for cash—-under $2000 online/newspaper. Get this truck—-better yet an RV, buy it, transfer money from storage room to RV/truck. Most storage places aren’t paying attention if you’re going back and forth, in and out. You need to move the money from your first stop and scatter your trail.Your first trail is to the storage place and the hotel.Then to a New hotel.Then to a New storage place.In the interim, you get your van/RV (preferable) and you decide where to go. I would go South, first.Once South I would buy another truck/van/RV for cash. I’d want a POS. Nothing fancy. Leave the first old van/RV in front of a motel that you’ve rented a room for several days. Long enough for you to get back on the road. The beauty of the cash is that you can pay for gas, food, supplies in cash along the way and your trail is reasonably scattered with similar vans/trucks/RVs.You have to keep moving to scatter your trail.(The logic of scattering your trail is that if someone were to follow you, it’s harder to follow someone who stops places, ostensibly to set up—-you have the #1 Storage Room—-so they have to watch that room or break into it. Are you coming back? It’s going to be difficult to break into a storage room so they have to wait. While they are waiting, you’ve boogied on to another storage place and down the same thing. What this does, for a minimal amount of time and money is it forces anyone trying to track you to stop and watch a cold trail. Are you near the storage room? Is the money in it? Are you coming back to it?My HYPOTHETICAL acts as if someone will come after you. The key to evading a tracker, legal or otherwise, isn’t speed or distance, that can always be surpassed but time. You want to wear out your trackers. You want them criss crossing their own tracks trying to discern yours and your intentions. If I find $24 million, I’m balls to the wall going to play this out once I touch the money and move it. And I play to win, on my terms.)Then I’d back track to NJ if I started in NY. You need to be somewhere that you’re familiar with but new to where you’re going.You need a ghetto/lower middle class neighborhood to rent a house in.(The logic of this—but I didn’t consider this, because Black and Latino people don’t think about this as Black and Latino people is that we can hide easier among our own people than not. $24 million is cartel level cash—-that’s White and Latino, Mexican, Colombian, etc.. They won’t be able to ease into a Black/Latino ghetto unnoticed by the residents. As an individual Black man I can rent a room or a house and drop in and be invisible and quickly build rapport. Poverty is all about relationships. I passively can get half a dozen watchers keeping their eyes open faster than I could in secure community whee I stand out.)Another storage room. Cash.(The logic is now I’ve created 3–4 storage rooms in 3–4 parts of the Eastern seaboard. if I paid upfront for 6 months to a year and left boxes, and even some money in them — one if trackers break in, they find the money or they find nothing. But they now have to break into a place, commit a crime, evade storage security. News, the storage place, someone will alert me that my unit was broken into. This immediately answers whether I’m being tracked or not. Anyone tracking the money will have an idea of it’s size and weight so they’ll think a storage place is logical as I figure out what to do with the money. Not the RV/truck itself. Especially if I’m on my second or third truck/RV. It generally takes the DMV in multiple states anywhere from one month to six to update ownership records.)I might not even transfer title of the vehicle I’m in until I get a another one. I dump one truck in Charlotte. Buy another in Raleigh, don’t change the registration. Drive it for a day to Virginia and buy the next truck there. A tracker again has to wait for North Carolina to update. That’s potentially a month before they start expanding to neighboring states. If I’m really hot, I’d not buy the 3rd vehicle in a neighboring state but in the state on the other side — instead of Virginia, buy in Maryland. A tracker now has to systematically go from state to state using NC as a start point — but should they track west, south or north? That questioning — gives me time.In California you can buy a brand new car, and not have plates for 6 months (they’re changing the law — but Steve Jobs regularly replaced his car with the exact same car before the plates deadline occurred…so technically he was driving a car with no traceable plates.)Your next goal is to get something in another state that you control. Another storage room.I would separate the money. Maybe three or four drops over two or three states. At some point you might need to walk away from everything and you’ll need to walk away, period, never look back, don’t go back to your place, no clothes, no mementos, nothing. Just walk.(The logic is I’ve bought some time. Maybe a month, maybe 3–4 months. I’ve also created a human network (storage attendants, police, newspapers, etc.) as unknowing watchers to keep an eye out for trackers after me. But I’ve gained time. Now I have to long-haul ass because the east coast is too hot. Yet on the other hand that’s what a tracker might think I’m doing so I have to double blind myself. I go old school. Old Native school.Native American war parties would attack a camp, fort, etc.. Draw out the enemy. Sometimes the force was too great and the war party would have to run, retreat. The enemy might know that it was Sioux or Apache or Narragansett so they would know we’re heading upland 200 miles to where the tribe camp is with their reinforcements and more importantly women and children. The war party on the run would intentionally do this criss-crossing game, leaving behind war party members to distract, delay and confuse the enemy. This might mean if there were 10 of you that along the 200 mile trek, you left behind 5 people to sometimes start a fight, the enemy would stop. 3 to run tracks to the east rather than the north east, creating the tracks of ten, the enemy would follow. 2 more would circle behind the enemy and attack them from behind. This gave the fastest 5 men time to get to the village and move the village.But with $24 million I have to always assume trackers are coming. I’m playing for time. I also have to assume that the trackers will get close to me, no matter what, so I must have a bug out plan. Because no one can be left alive over this $24 million, once you take the money, any of it, it’s now your life. Or your death. Your only chance is to decide, on your own terms, how you’ll live and die. Like a Sioux war party.)The Art of Disappearing in Plain SightNow the real work begins. You have to decide what you want to do with the rest of your life and where. The challenge of America is that you’ll always be looking over your shoulder from wherever this money came from. Maybe you can get scot-free away, maybe not. $24 million is different than a few million. $24 million suggests the originator can travel abroad, so you have to consider where you can and can’t go. The places are limited.Monaco.Fiji Islands.Australia.Africa (South Africa — maybe).Rio.France.I would go to the airport and buy tickets to several North American cities leaving on varying dates. Go to the loading gate, check in and then walk away if possible. You need to create a trail, a lot of false positives. This is easier to do with trains and buses, at least a dozen tickets going to multiple points. You have to become a ghost. When someone comes looking for you, you need them checking a dozen trails by train, car, bus, plane — it might mean your life.I’d then use a year in seclusion, bouncing from cash hotels to cash hotels, using a fake ID to plot and plan my next moves.(A point about ID came up, needing it for hotels. Credit cards. You can use gift cards and even Hotel gift cards or online site gift cards. You can make a reservation with a card and pay in cash when you arrive.)The next big question is how much money are you willing to spend to keep $20 million? It will cost you several million to keep the $20 million.I’d use the year to find people in financial distress. Real estate developers. Financiers. Attorneys. Auctioneers. But they have to be knowledgeable and right on the edge of desperate. Not a criminal. Someone who is motivated to help you, hopefully several someones who don’t know each other. You need someone INSIDE of a high money system to move your money.Test cash — say 10% as a brokers fee to someone to move $1-$5 million. You need a credible lie as to why you have this cash. That’s the biggest challenge. Now here’s the kicker: the government will eventually notice cash deposits but how long is that eventually? A tax period? A year? What if I deposit on say January 1st of 2020? Then logically I might not have to answer for it until 2021–2022. They’ll wait a year to see if you file/answer. Then pursue. That’s 2 years right there. Time. You’re always playing for and with time.But you have to make sure that you’re willing to lose your test cash. Say at first a million to move into an account. Set up a business account. Then write one check from one account to another. Set up another business. Invest in several, small businesses. A Chinese restaurant, a laundromat, a grocery store, a bodega, a cell phone store, a discount store, a thrift store. A shifty lawyer (How do you find a shifty lawyer? A criminal attorney that specializes in drug cases. I would hang out at a court house, watch who has the most clients and what their charges are.) would help you set up seed money that you could then move into legit businesses fast. Perhaps a dozen or more businesses, partnerships. I buy 25% of Bob’s laundromat and pay Bob $1000 a month in money orders for 5 years. I just have to buy a money order every few days and I could do this for a dozen businesses in varying states.(The logic is — I don’t need a dozen businesses or partnerships to succeed, I need one or two. The rest are McGuffins. Distractions. I’m dropping seeds, planting them, creating a legal mix and scattering across multiple states in very small ways to obtain legal, financial access. Once I get that I can start parsing cash into accounts I control or have access to or can mix my money into other businesses.Note: Someone brought up tracing the cash itself. Drug dealers don’t possess the technology of the Secret Service/Treasury Department to do this. But let’s give these mofos the benefit of this just to make the exercise fun. In order to track money, generally by serial number it has to get into a banking system, a reserve. There are several large ones through the country.I spend $100 at Joe’s Gas Station in Southern Jersey.I buy a truck for $2500 in Southern Jersey.I buy food and supplies at several stop and go shops along the highway from NJ to PA, $1000.I spend $200 at a motel in eastern Pennsylvania.I buy a truck for $2200 in Pennsylvania.I spend $500 at a storage place in Charlotte.I buy food and supplies at Wal-Mart in North Carolina, $1000.I spend $1000 in Raleigh on storage.I buy a truck for $2000 in North Carolina back woods.I buy another truck in Virginia for $3000.Here’s the problem with even a government entity tracking money:Circulation.There’s estimated to be a trillion dollars floating electronically around the world in bank accounts, unclaimed.There’s estimated to be billions in cash in the USA that has not been retrieved back into the Reserves. (Under mattresses, hidden, forgotten, lost, DB Cooper.)It takes time for the cash from all of my purchases to move into circulation in a specific way.My above list isn’t as simple to track as it looks, in cash money. Instead look at it as it’s depository/hand.StorePrivate citizenMultiple stores and private citizensCash/credit businessPrivate citizenBusiness-cash and creditLarge retailerBusiness-cash and creditPrivate citizenPrivate citizenWalMart. I used to work at WalMart, they collect and store and then reuse cash throughout their regional store systems. That money is not getting to a governmental or a bank scanning system soon.Private citizens—where are they going to spend that money? Bills, food, leisure—WalMart, bank, movie theater. A third party removed from me will deposit the money, if they deposit it at all. Is it unusual to have a few hundred, a few thousand on hand at home, to split it up with the wife and kids. That’s the reason why I’m buying under a certain number. Large amounts get deposited, smaller amounts get held and spent.Business and Cash business, will hold it’s cash. Or deposit weekly. Probably not nightly because as a storage place how much cash do they get that they run out the bank with? They need that cash on hand for more possible cash customers. Now those cash customers come to storage place, change a $100, get 3 of my $20s and take those and go to…..Walmart.Total: $15,000 spent. Times 5 $20s that’s 750 $20 bills.Dispersed, imagine 750 $20 dollar bills scattered across the above 5 states, cities, towns, small towns, highway stops. Let’s say you got serial number pings, it would take awhile to get the pings because the bill has to make it’s way back to a bank/reserve. $20s for a reason. $100s are less common and you’d stand out. Remember that fat guy who paid with a $20 bill in front of you two months ago at the Piggly Wiggly? Yeah, I didn’t think so.The below map is now a HYPOTHETICAL illustration. It has no bearing to the words printed on it. Imagine each one of those dots is our tracked $20 bills. What does this tell you?The dude with the $24 million dollars is on the East Coast maybe.Now imagine it’s me, you think I’m not going to burn trails across the country, leave cash on buses and trains and in cars? Not a lot. A few hundred, here and there. Nothing of consequence that someone won’t pick up, count their lucky stars and go spend on casual, normal purchases. Ten or twenty of these drops, I bet less than 3 of the drops actually gets deposited to a bank. And if it does—-let’s say I put $300 in $20s in a wallet on a seat on an Amtrak going to Washington, DC. I hop off before the train leaves. The wallet is found in Washington D.C. or someone finds it at a point beforehand, gets off and a whole new cluster is created in Baltimore. I’d have the entirety of the USA covered in less than a month with false-positive trails.Every one of the major reserves and banks would flag money.I would plant money on trains, buses, cars going in a variety of directions, in abandoned purses and backpacks on college campuses, get the money into circulation. Everywhere.Scary Fact: Cocaine traces found on 4 out of 5 of every US currency bill,. Not because it was used to snort coke but because it’s such a fine powder it transfer easily.)Here’s the loophole of taxes—-you have time to declare what it is and where it came from. Time is what will allow you to implement your next plan. Which is why you need time to figure out what you want to do with your life and to lay reasonably low for awhile. It’s easier to hide among poor people than rich. Plenty of hotels take cash and you can live there week to week or change every few months.(Most poor people, even middle class don’t plan their lives. Rich people do. The planning creates the success, not the success. With time and adroit planning, you can manage all of this. Hell, you’re not working full time anymore and you’re just ostensibly taking care of that dying relative, right? As an aside to this, I would add that there are constant questions about what do “rich” people do that poor people don’t. Rich people start from the premise that there is a solution, complex perhaps, to their challenge. Poor people throw up their hands when their FIRST thought proves unworkable. Rich people people say shit, and get a pad and say there are at least 100 ways to do this, I’ll chart them all, investigate them and come up with 10 and then find 10 people to answer what’s workable and not. From those 10 and those 10 people, I’ll narrow it down to 5 ways that will work.)Accept The New Reality: Your old life is over. Accept it.Your new goals are to find the people who will help you set up your new life.You need a new identity. Several, in fact.I would avoid criminals and instead find somewhere populated by immigrants, maybe even do some Home Depot day labor work. Talk to them. They know ways to get ID. That’s what you need. A new identity. Several in fact. Get several identities, stash them with the money drops. Act as if one day you will only have time to get to a stash and run. I’d slowly set up cars, used, with the money nearby—-long term parking.(Logic. You need to learn from people who are surviving, living, taking care of their families, living on the margins, perhaps even hiding in plain sight how they do it. Juan and his buddies in the pic? Your new mentors. They know how to live off of the grid but access it as different identities for what you will need. You spot Juan a couple of hundred for his contact for a SS card, birth certificate and you can get a new license, grow a bank account and credit cards.)I’d also go to a gun range and take private lessons. Buy guns at gun shows t avoid paperwork and have a gun within six feet of you and the money at all times. I’d also go out into the wild and practice killing animals and gutting them, get past squeamishness at killing.At some point you will probably have to hurt someone who is after the money or who tries to take the money from you. Or the trackers will find you and you’ll have to fight/escape. You must be your first but not your only weapon. I’d take aikido lessons if I were a woman, boxing lessons too. Aikido and boxing and wrestling as a man. You’ll need to know how to fight, even if it’s at a gas station late at night on one of your sojourns. But your first defensive tactic is to always get away.I would also take security guard lessons and keep taking more and more of the classes to understand fire alarms, buildings, transport, weapons, observational skills. Your biggest weakness will be the police and law enforcement. If they get to close to you or have reason to search your premises, you can’t have anything that looks like more than what you are. Which is why the money has to be secreted and broken up. If your hotel gets drug raided, they can’t find your laptop and books or gun (I’d keep it small, maybe in a bag in my pocket, a Starbucks cup, something innocuous.) You have to walk out every day ready to never come back to that room and ready to dump anything on you that connects you to you.That means your clothing will have to be more basic, monotone, boring. Slacks, khakis, a suit, shirts, shoes, sneakers, hiking boots, a travel bag. Anything you can replace, you do replace. Anything that can be replaced, you don’t carry. That immediately lightens your load. I would leave bags with clothing at hotels, happens all the time. You put $200 in cash in it, no one will ever report the bag.(Logic-DNA: I would also at this point start getting weird about DNA traces. By that I mean I would frequent sex clubs, adult book stores, gyms and start gathering hair, semen samples, blood samples and liberally leaving around places you’ve been. Again a higher level trail scattering.)I would also buy, with cash, financial planning books and then dump them on buses, trains, etc. so that the hotel staff never sees what you’re “thinking” about.(You have $24 million in cash. Money will make you a target and you will have to burn the night oil to keep it. You have to constantly think about that now as your full time job so you need a crash course on financial planning and international finances. With enough of this scattering you have maybe 1 year to pull this off, it’s literally a heist. I’d cut that to the bare-wire to 6 months.)Someone will be a problem one day. You have to get yourself in your secluded year to a level where you’re ready to handle problems at a level most people are specially trained at. I would spend time at the gym, a personal trainer, and tell the hotel I do something stupid like data entry and go to my classes several times a week. I wouldn’t isolate myself though, you might need teh protection of a crowd to alert you to danger and facilitate your getting away. I go to movies and concerts quite often, several times a week. This gives you the protection of the crowd but more importantly, if anyone is following you they will stand out because it’s more difficult to blend in to a crowd, two, three, four times in a row AND keep track of following you.The secondary effect of all of this physical working out this has is you’ll probably look different than you did when you got a hold of the money. This gives you time to physically grow into new identities and to grow your new identities that you’ve obtained. You can now play with hair color, eye color, beards, clean shaven. I would have IDs with a variety of looks—-shaven, bald, bearded, something I could change in a short period of time or explain away but different from the other.Again buy travel tickets scattering across the country from several different outlets, make it weekend gigs to go places and just buy tickets. This is your new hobby, false positive trails.When someone tracks you, and eventually someone will, you need to have gone back and forth over your own trail half a dozen times. So that no one can see where you started or stopped. You’ll probably have to keep track of this in some basic way—-don’t keep this list/map on your person, on your computer nor with any of the money. I’d say a USB drive with just a list that you only access from public-library pcs or Fed Ex/Staples. You’ll need to avoid your own clustering. Or create so many clusters that it’s impossible to discern what’s a clustering.You will also have to no longer use any of the social media you have used, the search history, websites. You have to change everything. I would spend the year slowly deleting what I could and recreating false positives again. Family in different states, pictures from places you’ve never been, etc.. People don’t realize that we create “internet fingerprints” as individual as our physical ones when we go online based upon how you think and therefore how you search. You’re going to have to work diligently at scrubbing this, changing this, being a new person. I would start creating social media for new identities, attaching emails, uploading pics of places, people you’re “related” to. You have to grow the identities Juan helped you create/buy.HYPOTHETICALLY, This excessive diligence might seem insane but you have multiple short and long term problems:You don’t know what you don’t know. (Where did this money come from, is anyone looking for it or knows about it? You might never know the answer to this question but you have to act like there’s a 12 man bounty squad after you. Because....there might be.)You don’t know what you need to know, yet. (You’re learning how to move, safe guard and launder $24 million…on a Thursday. Give yourself a break. But create rules about how much cash you carry, spend, what you buy and don’t buy. You can’t flash money. Yet.)You don’t know what others know. You have to become the kind of person who controls the narrative about yourself. That’s not just simply lying, that’s filling in the blanks that people nose in about. Money draws attention and you’ll have to deflect it even as you use a little bit of money to keep the majority of it.You are playing a game about how much of the money you can keep and can’t. I would say the best case scenario is $20 million. Worse case $12 million. Between bribes, walking away from, costs, etc., you have to accept it’s not all yours, keeping it might cost half of it. But you’re $12 million up, not $12 million down, right?You will have to defend the money/yourself without the help of the entire police, legal or justice system. You’re on your own. Which means you have to be ready to cross the line when your crack addict hotel neighbor breaks into your room, when someone attacks you at a gas station, when someone tries to carjack you. Something will happen, mainly because you’re alone and what often insulates us from danger is that we travel in small or large packs of people at work, school, family. You’re out of that club, you’re a lone wolf on the prairie. You can no longer call the police. Ever again. You have to run from danger or seriously harm your attacker and then get away. You in essence have become a criminal, the irony is that no one will know you’re one until they catch you, interrogate you, imprison you…as a criminal for something unrelated. Therefore you can never get detained by the police, even if you’re the victim.It will be years of this obscuring and obfuscation before you can rest. But it will be worth it when you calculate the payment you get for each of these years. Best case scenario: $20 million with 20–50 years of life left. Worst case scenario: $12 million with 20–50 years of life left. But that’s before you invest it for a profit….You must control your image in a world that records all of us. This means that you have to assume that unless you’re in a room in the dark, you are being recorded—-video. You must control what that all seeing eye sees. A boring data analyst staying at a Jersey cheap hotel leaving with a laptop and gym bag every day by noon. The goal isn’t to become invisible, the goal is to become one of the herd. The herd will make you individually invisible. But you have to be ready to slip out of the pack at any time. (I’ve been thinking a lot about this one—-there’s make up, prosthetics, wigs, fat suits. I would also start looking into glasses, altering them to cause reflections and refractions from your face with light as well as micro-filaments to apply to eye brows, cheekbones. Hell, I’ve got free time, I’d watch a lot of facial special effects videos on YouTube and experiment for a few months. Nothing will be a perfect disguise—-it’s easier for a woman to change her appearance than a man. If I were a smaller framed man or could lose weight, I’d go drag the whole year, live as the opposite sex than the one being looked for.)You have to play your life as a long game now. In increments of years. I would take up meditation to learn how to calm myself quickly and deeply. Maybe even go to retreats. You need to relate to Time differently. You need to have greater control over your emotions and impulses because you need to hone your sense of intuition vs your sense of fear.I would use escorts/prostitutes in various cities for sex. Again your data analyst cover. You may have to avoid deep relationships for years because the money is your primary project and you can’t have someone too close, snooping around your apartment. If you date someone then rent a hotel room in a second hotel-—never bring anyone back to your A Spot. if you play it right, you’ll get the money into places, accounts, and businesses that you wholly control in a few years and then you can discreetly marry them (marriage will help you double hide in their identity. The problem is they are married to a false identity and this is why you might forsake deep relationships for a few years.) Another problem would be spending money in front of them, you’ve just created a witness to the fact that you paid for dinner with a wad of $20s. If the Trackers are good they’re going through each person, proofing money to event, to purchase. Eventually they might find an ex. Or an ex will look for you. Or an ex will become a stalker. Intimate relationships are dangerous until you’ve established a whole new identity, moved all the money and have control of it. Then you can date in your new identity.You’re not sure yet where you’ll end up. You have to accept that you’re moving to move at first. Then you’re moving to obscure. Then you’re moving to obscure your obscuring. Then you’re moving to drop seeds. Then you’re moving to check your buds. Then you’re moving to reap your harvest and ship it away. A lot of your life will be this movement so you’ll need to become a more encapsulated person who is flexible enough to move and disappear at will or intuition. This would also disrupt any long term relationships or even answering what your “life plan” is. Your inability to answer or sudden disappearance might raise a red flag. All of the scattering work has one crucial element: you’re not attached to it. Running around, creating false trails, all of this has been done by an invisible hand-—the last thing you need is someone who can identify you on such and such date in such and such place. That identification, say 6 months in, would obliterate any scatterings you’ve created up until then and immediately put you on the run. And a running rabbit is easier to catch than one that’s had time to hide in a forest. Running itself is the worse thing that can happen now, so you have to make sure you’re in control.Years 2 to 5You’re in better physical and mental shape, you’ve had time to think, plot, plan, pull together some pieces, be quiet, check some people out.Someone has helped you get a small chunk, say $750,000, into a bank account you control. Now you can do something.Buy a cheap house (s) with the company, rent a couple of them out. New storage places for cash, again dividing it up. Conceivably you could end up with a dozen or twice as many hiding places. This is perfect. Trackers are looking for $24 million, a thief might consider it a boon to find $500,000, you can walk away from $500,000 easier than $23,500,000. You’ll be willing to cut bait if you spot something out of whack on $500k, your instinct would be to fight for $5 to 24 million, you need to work against your own instincts.You can start easing cash into the accounts of each LLC, not much but some. Done properly and quietly, as if you have tenants, you could probably get a million or so in. I would furnish the homes, AirBnB them (get a student to manage it for you or a neighbor or property manager. Pay well but not too well. You need them to help maintain your mundane existence as you “travel doing IT projects as a consultant”—-just saying that alone and eyes will glaze over and take they’ll paycheck), stage them as if people live there, light timers.I would encourage AirBnB folk into them, you want again a steady flow of traffic in and out, lots of faces and people. Always assume that wherever you are you’re being watched. I would arrive at these places with a suitcase like a traveler. Any chance, no matter how remote you get to lie about yourself, about what you are and are not, take it. Your favorite food, color, type of music, I would fill the trucks and RVs with different music than I liked, buy clothing two sizes too big or too small, pepper my stuff with women’s clothing and make up to look like a couple traveling together. Whatever it took to make someone, a Tracker, doubt. Scattered trail, multiple trails, doubt, false trails.You have to treat the money like you’ll only have 1 hour to retrieve it one day so you can’t lump it together. If a million is 50–100lbs you have to consider how fast can you move 500lbs? What kind of car can do that and not look suspicious? A packed car in a garage of a house or two, maybe even one rented down the block from where you live. If you arrive and it looks hinky you want to be able to keep driving by and go to another house. I would get my house at the end of a cul de sac so that I can watch who comes in or out—-I would slowly buy the surrounding houses in the cul de sac under varying LLCs and own the whole neighborhood in a year or two—-and be able to cut through the backwoods. Or on a corner of an intersection, it will give you good visibility of who is watching the house.Assume you will get caught in one of your hideouts. Someone will break in. There will be a natural disaster. A fire. Your whole bundle can’t be in one spot.But with cash in the bank and time, you can now branch out. You can invest in things, create partners, limited partners who put in cash every month. Stores, restaurants, bodegas, laundromats can do 10%, maybe even 50% better in business every month to get cash into their working accounts. And that cash can be used to set up something else until you have a network where you can slowly infuse cash into it. But you’ll need time and a drawn out plan. Think of it like a chain of Christmas lights of businesses and accounts that you control.Now you can run business deals, get paid in cash slowly to get passports, to get out of the country. Which might have always been your long term goal. You’ve been taking flights to places, checking places out, checking out the strength of your ID. I would do tourism junkets to one country, leave the group to check out another. Again improvising your scattering your trail internationally.Insanely it’s easier to get INTO Mexico than out of. I’d start experimental trips down the coast. The coast is safer because there are American military boats and bases on the Pacific side and the Gulf inner side. Inner country, consider it bedlam, too risky and you would stand out. You want to go from seaport to seaport, military town to military town, you’re scoping out with $750k in the bank, how to get out of America. You might want to get out as one identity, secrete the money legally internationally where you have access and control and then come back into the country as another identity, who works for/owns the company that now has the money. That would be perfection, this would be to my mind, my end goal.Scatter.Leave America with money under one identity.Have the ability to return to America as another identity with full control of money. I would look like just an employee/business person with international business. I might even do something insane like get government contracts or do catering or something for law enforcement so that I was always surrounded by police. Another layer of protection.This might take you several years with that much money but you want to travel around Mexico and the Caribbean. Get to St. Kitts. Bimini. Deposit and transfer small amounts of cash. Start taking short flights to there and back. Private flights. Watch security. Could you get through with a duffel bag? $500k? $1 million?Your goal might be to over the course of 5 years get cash to a friendly foreign bank (Your nest egg of $12 million). But it will be a full time job just scoping out spots and moving money. Never trust anyone with the full story, the whole nut. Always be piddling, a fool with half a million in cash, maybe $1 million max in an account from multiple legitimate sources.But your security training and self protection training will make you someone who can spot a problem, get away from one and fight out of one if there’s no other choice.Steps.Move and separate money.Obscure your identity.Train yourselfCreate new identities.Bribe others to move small amounts.Repeat steps 3–5.Not that, you know, I’ve thought about this……..Note: TrackersI got several messages about them. HYPOTHETICALLY. It wouldn't be the criminals in any way tied to the money, it would be one person removed. Say the secretary (or a family member) who tied up wads and wads of $20s learns her bosses were killed by each other and the money is gone. (If possible, I would torch the place where the money and bodies were, burn some cash.) She’s not going to run around the country with a gun looking for you. She’s smart so she’s going to hire Skip Tracers around the country to keep tabs on your identity if she can figure it out. She’s also going to hire a handful of private investigators and/or bounty hunters with your pic and a substantial cash reward for your capture. If I were her, I would build up a BS charge of divorce, child support, alimony, and running off with a million in cash.Smart Trackers would also be looking at a certain economic level, high and low, medium is broad. High, because suddenly you’ve got lots of cash so someone would go wild, high on the hog. Easiest to find. Low would be someone who doesn’t fit. Medium though, Best Western, Comfort Inn, Motel 8—-there are thousands of them and a dozen ways to register and get a room, it would be a nightmare to search through these.Highways and byways. If they assumed you drove then I would put investigators and watchers at major highway intersections/interstates. The best bet is to pull out a road map and only travel blue roads and thin red ones. Nothing built by the state, only roads built by the county and back roads. Interstate have tolls, and tolls are cameras.I would shop at WalMarts. WalMarts are crowds and the disparate kinds of things you can buy at WalMarts make it difficult for even the sales associates to remember if you bought a wagon of food, women’s clothing and a power saw all at once. Also it’s a high cash place, you can get everything from gum to glasses to weapons, to food to computers there with less tracking. Their video system is extensive yes, but Trackers won’t have time or legal right to subpoena video records. This leaves you a gap of time to keep moving.Trackers on commission/bounty are never going to stop, (DB Cooper!) which is why you have to give them something to do with all of your false positive trails. All of the scatterings give you a tangled ball of yawn for Trackers to undo while you isolate/create your new identity and slip into it. Once you accept they’re after you, forever, it becomes easier to work your program of vanishing.Smart Trackers will also be watching newly incorporated companies with large cash deposits which is why you might want to sidle into an existing business.Trackers won’t be expecting you to have trained to turn and fight them. But Trackers will be able to stop, harm and detain you so you have to be ready to go to war with them, the closer they get.Trackers will never give up if there is a 10% bounty on your head. Ever.Your best and final hope is to vanish in America, get out of America, return to America, if you so choose, as someone else.#KylePhoenix
How has Christianity improved or made society/the world a better place?
The positive cultural influence of the Christian Church is too vast to enumerate in detail in less than a series of books. Its influence is not limited to the West, as it spread beyond the Western Empire in the days of Rome, in its first centuries, and has continued to spread around the world in the centuries since. For the most part, its influence has been more good than not wherever it has gone, and attempting to even list it all would be a very long list indeed.However, in answer to this question, I have chosen to limit a sampling of examples to the West, and to the limited time period of Early Christianity up to the Middle Ages. I have picked a few examples of influence I see as the paradigm altering, watershed, kind.The Christian church has continued, to this day, to be a cultural influence for good all around the world, but the history from the 1400s on is even more extensive—and complex—than what preceded it, so please accept—these limitations I have imposed are my limitations—and not the limitations of the church.Christianity altered the paradigm concerning:SexWomenCharityPreservation of literacyMonks and NunsBenedict’s RuleSkills and EducationSocial StructureCharles Martel Stopped IslamScienceArts and HumanitiesPainting, sculpture and architectureMusicLawHuman ValueHuman RightsSlaveryDemocracyFirst to Fourth Century (30–500)Sex — Let’s talk about sex—not just because it’s fun—but because changes here are among the most powerful, yet most overlooked, of all the many positive changes Christianity brought.“The gradual transformation of the Roman world from polytheistic to Christian marks one of the most sweeping ideological changes of premodern history. At the center of it all was sex.”Historian Kyle Harper says:"...the triumph of Christianity not only drove profound cultural change, it created a new relationship between sexual morality and society...The legacy of Christianity lies in the dissolution of an ancient system where social and political status, power, and social reproduction (passing on social inequality to the next generation) scripted the terms of sexual morality."That ancient system was built on status and used shame to enforce itself. Shame was not personal guilt so much as a social concept: breaking the rules had profound and far-reaching social consequences. Aristocratic men had status; women had little, and slaves had no status at all, therefore, as far as the Romans were concerned, slaves had no internal ethical life and were incapable of shame. This permitted Roman society to find both a husband's control of a wife's sexual behavior as a matter of intense importance, and at the same time, see his live-in mistress and sex with young slave boys as of little concern.Paul wrote that the body was a consecrated space, a point of mediation between the individual and the divine. His over-riding sense that gender—rather than status or power or wealth or position—was the prime determinant in the propriety of the sex act was momentous. It was a transformation in the deep logic of sexual morality.The Greeks and Romans said our morality depends upon our social position which is given to us by fate; that there is inequity in that is not a moral issue that concerned them. Christianity "preached a liberating message of freedom.” It was a revolution in the very image of the human being as a sexual being, free to choose, and personally responsible for that choice to God alone. It created a revolution between society and the individual, limiting society’s rights and claims on the individual as a moral agent.Whether or not Paul’s particular teaching on gender is still agreed with or not, the historical facts show that the Christian view that the powerful should be held to the same standards of sexual accountability as those without power has since become the norm of a just society.Appearance of Jesus Christ to Maria Magdalena (1835) by Alexander Andreyevich Ivanov.Women Early Christianity — Some historians hold that the Church played a considerable part in fostering the inferior status of women by providing a "moral justification" for male superiority. However, the Church has also made enough positive contributions toward women that, on balance, I am going to say the overall impact has been more positive than negative.Understanding that involves understanding context—what was there before, and without, Christianity.In antiquity, there were no Near Eastern societies that were not patriarchal, so patriarchalism and male superiority were not unique to the Old Testament. All around the Mediterranean, patriarchy was established as the norm in all of the multiple different societies before 3000 BC and they did not change for millennia—until Christianity.Women were seen as intellectually and physically inferior to men and as "naturally dependent" by Sumerians, and Babylonians, by the Hittites, the Greeks and the Romans—all of them. Some philosophers speculated that women were a different race not fully human like men. Athenian women were legally classified as children regardless of age and were the "legal property of a man at all stages in her life." Women everywhere, including the Roman Empire, had limited legal rights and could not enter professions.It was common in the Greco-Roman world to expose female infants because of the low status of women in society. Many exposed children died, but many were taken by speculators who raised them to be slaves or prostitutes. Female infanticide and abortion were practiced by all classes. The church forbade these practices to its members.Christians did not believe in cohabitation, so if a Christian man wanted to live with a woman, the church required marriage; the pagan double standard of allowing married men to have extramarital sex and mistresses was forbidden. This gave women far greater security.It was not rare for pagan women to be married before the age of puberty and then forced to consummate the marriage with her often much older husband. Christianity established a minimum age for marriage.Husbands could divorce their wives at any time simply by telling the wife to leave; wives could not. In the code of Hammurabi, a woman could sue for divorce, but if she couldn’t prove she had been an exemplary wife, she was drowned for making the request.Roman law required a widow to remarry; 1 Timothy says a woman is better off if she remains unmarried. Widows in Greco-Roman society could not inherit their husband's estate and could find themselves in desperate circumstances, but almost from the beginning the church offered widows support.Women were an important part of Jesus’ inner circle, and there is no record of him ever treating a woman with less than respect. He spoke to women in public, assumed they had responsibility for their own choices, taught Mary of Bethany, admired, forgave, accepted and approved them. Christianity never fully lost sight of this as a fulfillment of God creating humans in His image as both “male and female.” Along with Paul declaring a Christian is a Christian, male or female, in Galatians 3:28, this produced a kind of “metaphysical” equality found only in Christianity at this point in history. The church started out trying to practice this at first. The extra-biblical evidence is strong that women played vital roles in Christianity’s beginnings. Many women began choosing to stay single and celibate, and they spread the word, but this “female initiative” stirred up vehement opposition from the Romans.According to Margaret MacDonald, accusations that Christianity undermined the Roman family, which was built upon male authority, were used to stir up hatred of Christianity. Along with many other rumors and accusations, this led to the persecution of the early church.Some of the later New Testament texts reasserting traditional roles for women are seen by many scholars as an accommodation to the danger involved with this Roman response.Within the church of the second and third century, tensions between the existing fact of women's leadership in Christian communities, and traditional Greco-Roman and patriarchal biblical views about gender roles, combined with persecution, produced controversy and challenges to women’s roles within the new church. Several apocryphal and gnostic texts provide evidence of such a controversy.Middle Ages — Once the early days of Christianity were past, the status of women declined. Women were routinely excluded from scholastic, political and mercantile life in society, however, women were not fully excluded from service in the church. Medieval abbesses and female superiors of female monastic houses were powerful figures whose influence could rival that of male bishops and abbots: “They treated with kings, bishops, and the greatest lords on terms of perfect equality;... they were present at all great religious and national solemnities, at the dedication of churches, and even, like the queens, took part in the deliberation of the national assemblies...” Such powers had never been, as a rule, available to ordinary women in previous Roman or Germanic societies.There was a rite for the ordination of women deacons in the Roman Pontifical, (a liturgical book), up through the 12th century. (But by the 13th-century Roman Pontifical, the prayer for ordaining women was removed, and ordination was redefined as applicable only to male Priests.) The popularity of the Virgin Mary secured maternal virtue as a central cultural theme of Europe in the middle ages and helped form the concept of chivalry. Kenneth Clarke wrote that the 'Cult of the Virgin' in the early 12th century "taught a race of tough and ruthless barbarians the virtues of tenderness and compassion".Woman-as-witch became a stereotype in the 1400s until it was codified in 1487 by Pope Innocent VIII who declared "most witches are female."The European witch stereotype embodies two apparent paradoxes: first, it was not produced by the "barbaric Dark Ages," but during the progressive Renaissance and the early modern period; secondly, Western Christianity did not recognize the reality of witches for centuries, or criminalize them until around 1400. Sociologist Don Swenson says the explanation for this may lay in the nature of Medieval society as heirocratic which led to violence and the use of coercion to force conformity."There has been much debate ...as to how many women were executed...[and estimates vary wildly, but numbers] small and large do little to portray the horror and dishonor inflicted upon these women. This treatment provides [dramatic] contrast to the respect given to women during the early era of Christianity..."Women under the Law —Church teaching heavily influenced the legal concept of marriage. In a departure from societal norms, Church law required the consent of both parties before a marriage could be performed. No more kidnapping and forced marriages.The elevation of marriage to a sacrament made the union a binding contract. The Church abandoned established tradition by allowing women the same rights as men to dissolve a marriage. (However, in practice, men have been granted dissolutions more frequently than women.)Women, in ConclusionThe church’s behavior toward women has been both positive and negative, but all in all, Christianity’s contribution has been more positive than negative.If nothing else could ever be said, Christianity’s treatment of women was a big improvement over what existed before it, and its belief in the spiritual equality of both genders before God, altered the paradigm for women forever.Historian of hospitals Guenter Risse says the Church spearheaded the development of a hospital system geared towards the marginalized.Charity/Hospitals — Prior to Christianity, there is little to no trace of any organized charitable effort anywhere in the ancient world. After centuries of Christian influence, charity has become a universal practice.Albert Jonsen, historian of medicine, says:“the second great sweep of medical history begins at the end of the fourth century, with the founding of the first hospital at Caesarea in Cappadocia, and concludes at the end of the fourteenth century, with medicine well ensconced in the universities and in the public life of the emerging nations of Europe.” That hospital was founded by Basil, Bishop of Caesarea. He established the first formal soup kitchen, hospital, homeless shelter, hospice, poorhouse, orphanage, reform center for thieves, women’s center for those leaving prostitution, and many other ministries. He was personally involved in the projects and process, and gave all his personal wealth to fund the ministries.Basil himself would put on an apron and work in the soup kitchen. These ministries were given freely regardless of religious affiliation. Basil refused to make any discrimination when it came to people who needed help saying that “the digestive systems of the Jew and the Christian are indistinguishable.”His example spread throughout Christianity continuing to the modern day.In the modern day, across the world, various Christian denominations are still the ones largely responsible for the establishment of medical clinics, hospitals, orphanages, soup kitchens, and schools of all kinds.The Catholic Church maintains a massive network of health care providers. In 2009, Catholic hospitals in the USA received approximately one of every six patients. Catholic Health Australia is the largest non-government provider of group-health, community care, and aged-care services, representing about 10% of the health sector.Women have played a vital role in running and staffing these Christian care institutions. In Methodist hospitals, deaconnesses who trained as nurses staffed the hospitals, and in Catholic hospitals, religious like the Sisters of Mercy, the Little Sisters of the Poor, and the Sisters of St.Mary kept their hospitals focused on serving the needy. The New York Times noted that nuns were trained to "see Jesus in the face of every patient."In the West, these institutions are increasingly run by lay-people after centuries of being run by priests, nuns and brothers, and while the profit motive has stepped in, it does mean more people are taking responsibility for caring for the poor than ever before. In Western nations, governments have increasingly taken up funding and organization of health services for the poor. In 1968, nuns or priests were the chief executives of 770 of America's 796 Catholic hospitals. By 2011, they presided over 8 of 636 hospitals.All over the West, charity is now a societal standard that simply didn’t exist prior to Christianity’s existence."After the Battle of Gravelotte. The French Sisters of Mercy of St. Borromeo arriving on the battle field to succor the wounded." Unsigned lithograph, 1870 or 1871.Dark Ages and the Early Middle Ages (500–800) Preservation of Literacy — After the Fall of Rome, culture in the west returned to a subsistence agrarian form of life. Church scholars preserved literacy in Western Europe at this time, saving and copying Greek and Roman texts in their scriptoriums. For centuries following the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, small monastic communities were practically the only outposts of literacy in all of Western Europe.…all through Europe, matted, unwashed, barbarians descended on the Roman cities, looting artifacts and burning books, when the Irish, who were just learning to read and write, took up the great labor of copying all western literature – everything they could lay their hands on. These scribes then served as conduits through which the Greco-Roman and Judeo-Christian cultures were transmitted to the tribes of Europe, newly settled amid the rubble and ruined vineyards of the civilization they had overwhelmed. Without this Service of the Scribes, everything that happened subsequently would be unthinkable.Monks and Nuns Benedict’s Rule — The period between 500 and 700, often referred to as the "Dark Ages," could also be designated the "Age of the Monk." Christian aesthetes, like St.Benedict (480–543) vowed a life of chastity, obedience, and poverty, and after rigorous intellectual training and self-denial, lived by the principles ‘work and pray’ following the “Rule of Benedict.” This “Rule” became the foundation of thousands of monasteries that spread across what is modern day Europe; "...certainly there will be no demur in recognizing that St.Benedict's Rule has been one of the great facts in the history of western Europe, and that its influence and effects are with us to this day."Spread Skills and Provided Education— Monasteries were self-supporting models of productivity and economic resourcefulness teaching their local communities animal husbandry, cheese making, wine making and various other skills. They were havens for the poor, hospitals, hospices for the dying, and schools. Medical practice was highly important in medieval monasteries, and they are best known for their contributions to medical tradition, but they also made some advances in other sciences such as astronomy. These monks had impact on every level of society both directly and indirectly since all leaders of this period were educated by monks.Changed Social Structure — The monastic movement also changed our social structure in ways that continue to affect us today. The formation of these organized bodies of believers, free from the political authority and familial authority that normally had the power to control an individual’s choices, gradually carved out a series of social spaces with some amount of independence and autonomy, thereby revolutionizing social history.Charles Martel Stopped Islam — (c. 457-751 CE) and his family played a crucial role in Western Europe’s transition from “ancient” to “medieval.”By 727, Charles — “the Hammer”—has become King of what will one day become the nation of France. Charles wages long campaigns against the pagan Germanic tribes who constantly raid his northern and eastern borders - Frisians, Saxons and Bavarians. He also lends strong support to the missionary activities of St. Boniface hoping that conversion to Christianity will tame the heathens enough to stop this raiding. It is not fully effective, but it sets the stage for his grandson’s actions that do change the landscape of Europe.The Hammer’s main positive role involves the Arabs who, since their arrival in 711, have gained a toehold on the European continent in the Spanish peninsula. The Arabs advanced rapidly northwards in their planned takeover of the continent and were soon beyond the Pyrenees. Narbonne was taken in 720 and an extended raid in 725 brought the Arabs briefly into Burgundy. There was a lull until 732 when a Muslim army took Bordeaux, destroyed a church near Poitiers and rode on towards Tours. Here the Arabs were confronted by an army of Franks led by Charles Martel and were stopped.It was a turning point in the attempted Muslim takeover of Europe.The Middle AgesSet of pictures of notable Scientists who self-identified as Christians: Isaac Newton (top left), Robert Boyle (top right), Francis Bacon (bottom left) and Johannes Kepler (bottom right).Science Early in the eleventh century, the full writings of Aristotle were reclaimed in the West by intrepid monks who traveled to Spain to work with the Jews there translating Aristotle’s writings into Latin. (These writings had been mostly lost in the West but not in the East, and when the Muslims came to Europe, they brought their books.) The church’s study of these texts laid the foundation for the beginnings of modern science as well as our modern university system.Historians of science, including J.L.Heilbron, A.C.Crombie, David Lindberg, Edward Grant, Thomas Goldstein, and Ted Davis, have argued that the church promoted learning and science during the Middle Ages. Critics will raise the Church's condemnations of Copernicus, Galileo, and Johannes Kepler as evidence to the contrary— which is a valid criticism—but it should also be considered that these same men all considered themselves Christian, were influenced by their faith in their work, and were originally sponsored by their respective churches.The sheer number of scientists and the amount of scientific work and discovery done by Christians, (many of them funded and supported by the church), supports the assertion that, taking its failures into consideration, the church’s overall impact on science has still been positive.Saint Thomas Aquinas was one of the great scholars of the Medieval period.Thomas Aquinas—the friar—opened the door for the church’s promotion of scientific and intellectual development by arguing that reason is in harmony with faith, and that reason can contribute to a deeper understanding of revelation. The church put that into practice. Churchmen such as the Augustinian abbot Gregor Mendel (pioneer in the study of genetics), the monk William of Ockham who developed Ockham’s Razor, Roger Bacon, (a Franciscan friar who was one of the early advocates of the scientific method), and the modern Belgian priest George Lemaître who was the first to propose the Big Bang theory, and others, have been among the leaders in astronomy, genetics, geomagnetism, meteorology, seismology, and solar physics, with many becoming the "fathers" of these sciences.Christians who influenced Western science include such notables as Isaac Newton and Robert Boyle, Albertus Magnus, Robert Grosseteste, Nicholas Steno, Francesco Grimaldi, Giambattista Riccioli, Roger Boscovich and Athanasius Kircher.Henri Becquerel, discovered radioactivity; Galvani, Volta, Ampere, and Marconi, are pioneers in electricity and telecommunications; Lavoisier is the "father of modern chemistry"; Vesalius is the founder of the modern study of human anatomy; and Cauchy, is one of the mathematicians who laid the rigorous foundations of modern calculus.According to 100 Years of Nobel Prize (2005), (which is a review of Nobel prizes awarded between 1901 and 2000), 65.4% of all Nobel Prize Laureates have identified Christianity in its various forms as their religious preference (423 prizes). Overall, Christians have won a total of 78.3% of all the Nobel Prizes in Peace, 72.5% in Chemistry, 65.3% in Physics, 62% in Medicine, 54% in Economics and 49.5% of all Literature awards.It is not too much to say that modern science may never have begun without the influence and support of the Christian church, and it most certainly would not be what it is today without it.Universities - The church of the middle ages helped found and build the university system, which grew rapidly in Europe in the 11th and 12th centuries. Today, there are more universities in the West than any other part of the world and almost all of them were founded as Christian institutions.Map of mediaeval universities established by Catholic students, faculty, monarchs, or priestsArts and Humanities Painting, Sculpture and Architecture — Artists like Michaelangelo, Da Vinci and Raphael produced some of the most celebrated works of art in history sponsored and supported by the church.[In the West] with a single exception, the great artists of the time were all sincere, conforming Christians. Guercino spent much of his mornings in prayer; Bernini frequently went into retreats and practised the Spiritual Exercizes of St.Ignatius; Rubens attended Mass every morning before beginning work. The exception was Caravaggio, who was like the hero of a modern play, except that he happened to paint very well. This conformism was not based on fear, but on the perfectly simple belief that the faith which had inspired the great saints of the preceding generations was something by which a man should regulate his life.The cathedrals of the Late Middle Ages are among the most iconic feats of architecture ever produced by Western civilization.Music — Catholic monks developed the first forms of modern Western musical notation; there would be no modern music as we know it without this.An enormous body of religious music has been composed for the church, with its support, and this sacred music led directly to the emergence and development of European classical music, and its many derivatives.Ludwig van Beethoven, composed many Masses and religious works, including his Ninth Symphony Ode to Joy.Law and Human Rights Church laws were the single Universal Law common to the different jurisdictions and peoples throughout Europe for much of European history.Human ValueIf we turn to the roots of our western tradition, we find that in Greek and Roman times not all human life was regarded as inviolable and worthy of protection. Slaves and 'barbarians' did not have a full right to life and human sacrifices and gladiatorial combat were acceptable... Spartan Law required that deformed infants be put to death; for Plato, infanticide is one of the regular institutions of the ideal State; Aristotle regards abortion as a desirable option; and the Stoic philosopher Seneca writes unapologetically: "Unnatural progeny we destroy; we drown even children who at birth are weakly and abnormal.” And whilst there were deviations from these views..., it is probably correct to say that such practices...were less proscribed in ancient times. Most historians of western morals agree that the rise of ...Christianity contributed greatly to the general feeling that human life is valuable and worthy of respect.Human Rights — Christian theology has strongly influenced Western philosophers and political activists in many ways, but nowhere more than in the area of human rights. Howard Tumber says, "human rights is not a universal doctrine, but is the descendent of one particular religion (Christianity).""...one cannot and need not deny that Human Rights are of Western Origin. It cannot be denied, because they are morally based on the Judeo-Christian tradition and Graeco-Roman philosophy; they were codified in the West over many centuries, they have secured an established position in the national declarations of western democracies, and they have been enshrined in the constitutions of those democracies." Saint Peter Claver worked for the alleviation of the suffering of African slaves brought to South America.Slavery — The Church initially accepted slavery as part of the social structure of society, campaigning primarily for humane treatment of slaves but also admonishing slaves to behave appropriately towards their masters. However, historian Glenn Sunshine says,Christians were the first people in history to oppose slavery systematically. Early Christians purchased slaves in the markets simply to set them free.Later, in the seventh century, the Franks..., under the influence of its Christian queen, Bathilde, became the first kingdom in history to begin the process of outlawing slavery....In the 1200's, Thomas Aquinas declared slavery a sin.When the African slave trade began in the 1400's, it was condemned numerous times by the papacy.The British became involved in the slave trade in the late 1500s, and by the 1700s, most people accepted slavery as a fact of life, until gradually, from the mid-1700s onwards, a Christian abolitionist movement began to take shape. It began with American Quakers.Slavery was also coming under attack from Enlightenment philosophers like Montesquieu and Rousseau, but it was Christian activists who initiated and organised an abolitionist movement.By the 1770s, Evangelicals were waking up to the seriousness of the issue – the British Methodist John Wesley and the American Presbyterian Benjamin Rush denounced the slave trade in influential pamphlets. Once the British Abolition Committee was established in 1787, abolitionism quickly became a mass movement. Within twenty years, the slave trade had been abolished throughout the British Empire. Christianity was instrumental in stopping slavery. If you don’t think it was Christianity that made the difference, read this: John Dewar Gleissner's answer to What are some mind-blowing facts about slavery?Consistent with Calvin's political ideas, Protestants helped create both the English and the American democracies.Christianity is criticized for many things, some of them justly. David Gushee says Christianity has a "tragically mixed legacy" when it comes to the application of its own ethics, using the examples of three cases of "Christendom divided against itself": the crusades, and Frances of Assissi’s attempt at peacemaking with Muslims; Spanish conquerors and the killing of indigenous peoples, and the Christian protests and fights for Native rights; and the on-again, off-again, persecution and protection of Jews. But we have also gotten a few things right here and there.I have borrowed from the article Role of Christianity in civilization - Wikipedia but I did attempt to limit myself to those sections of the article I wrote myself. Here are some of my references:Footnotes From Shame to Sin: The Christian Transformation of Sexual Morality in Late Antiquity (Revealing Antiquity): Kyle Harper: 9780674072770: Amazon.com: Books A Short History of Christianity: Geoffrey Blainey: 9781442225893: Amazon.com: Books Amazon.com: Sexual Morality in Ancient Rome (9780521859431): Rebecca Langlands: Books The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism: Timothy Keller: 9780525950493: Amazon.com: Books Early Christian Women and Pagan Opinion Amazon.com: Women and Gender in Medieval Europe: An Encyclopedia (Routledge Encyclopedias of the Middle Ages) (9780415969444): Margaret C. Schaus: Books CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Abbess Get the facts in order: A history of women's leadership Society, Spirituality, and the Sacred: A Social Scientific Introduction, Second Edition: Donald S. Swenson: 9780802096807: Amazon.com: Books Christian Charity in the Ancient Church - Kindle edition by Gerhard Uhlhorn. Religion & Spirituality Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com. A Short History of Medical Ethics: 9780195134551: Medicine & Health Science Books @ Amazon.com Nuns, a ‘Dying Breed,’ Fade From Leadership Roles at Catholic Hospitals Giving: Charity and Philanthropy in History: Robert H. Bremner: 9781560008842: Amazon.com: Books A History of Orthodox, Islamic, and Western Christian Political Values: Dennis J. Dunn: 9783319325668: Amazon.com: Books Amazon.com: How the Irish Saved Civilization (Hinges of History Book 1) eBook: Thomas Cahill: Kindle Store Amazon.com: 9783319325668: Books Benedictine Monachism Christian Community in History: Volume 1: Historical Ecclesiology: Roger D. Haight: 9780826416308: Amazon.com: Books Charles Martel : the Military Leader and Frankish Defender: History and Civilization Collection: 9782366593624: Amazon.com: Books 100 Scientists Who Shaped World History St. Thomas Aquinas and the Natural Law Tradition: Contemporary Perspectives: John Goyette, Mark S. Latkovic, Richard S. Myers: 9780813213781: Amazon.com: Books Faithful to Science 100 Years of Nobel Prizes: Baruch Aba Shalev: 9780935047370: Amazon.com: Books 50 Nobel Laureates and Other Great Scientists Who Believe in God Amazon.com: A History of the University in Europe: Volume 1, Universities in the Middle Ages (9780521361057): Hilde de Ridder-Symoens: Books The Western Humanities: The Complete Edition: Roy T. Matthews, F. Dewitt Platt: 9780874847857: Amazon.com: Books Amazon.com: The Routledge Companion to Early Christian Thought (Routledge Religion Companions) (9780415442251): D. Jeffrey Bingham: Books The Sacredness of Human Life: Why an Ancient Biblical Vision Is Key to the World's Future: David P. Gushee: 9780802844200: Amazon.com: Books Text, Cases and Materials on Medical Law and Ethics: Marc Stauch, Kay Wheat: 9781138024021: Amazon.com: Books The Routledge Companion to Media and Human Rights The Truth About the Catholic Church and Slavery Why You Think the Way You Do The abolition of the slave trade: Christian conscience and political action by John Coffey - Jubilee Centre The Abolitionists
What are some ways to live cheaply?
I wrote a similar answer for a question in the frame of getting out of debt. I am not affiliated with any of the websites, products, or services mentioned, they are simply useful resources I have used.I do financial planning for individuals and businesses. Getting where you want to be depends on one thing: Discipline.Every household is a business, it has revenues and costs. If your revenues are greater than your costs you have a profit. You can use that profit in many ways. Some households operate with higher costs than revenues and so people take out loans to cover the gap which add up quickly. These debts tie up future income, which makes it difficult to operate a household and pay off debts and leaves you open to risks from unexpected unemployment, injury, or illness. The name of the game is to reduce costs and maximize revenues. Most people can make some changes to do both, but the most important change is attitude. You need to consider your household a business, run the numbers regularly, and know them. Is your household profitable? Would anyone buy your household if it were a business? If it is profitable are those profits being used efficiently to better the household and it’s members in the long run? Many people get in trouble because they believe the primary function of household income is to provide the most happiness at all times and that leads to emotional decisions that are not fiscally responsible. Taking the emotion of out it and paying attention to the numbers is a big step many people never consider. That’s not to say everyone should sell all their possessions and live like a monk, but there are many things that became norms that are wasteful and lead people down a bad financial path.For these things to make a difference it is suggested you regularly fill out a budget so you can see what is happening in your household.Look for Savings EverywhereCoupon, use rewards programs, and always look to save money. Every little thing can add up and make a difference. For example, most household cleaning items are made up of primarily baking soda, which is extremely inexpensive, and some additives, predominately to add scents. Online there are guides to replace an $8.00–20.00 bottle of laundry detergent with $1.25 worth of materials and other such household cleaning supplies. Some things may not work for you, our dishwasher doesn’t like any formula we try to make, but every store-bought bottle you replace is a load of savings.Everyone that drives needs gas, so sign up for a rewards program from a gas station you like and stick to that brand. Most gas station rewards programs add your credit card, so now you don’t have to remember member numbers or carry around a bunch of cards, and if you have multiple signers on a card everyone that gets gas with that brand uses the rewards program automatically. Most retailers have a rewards program too, especially grocery stores, so save money on the things you have to buy.Going to resale shops and outlet stores instead of department stores will save you hundreds of dollars easily, and if you have the patience to do some digging you’ll find what you need or want eventually. For example, Eddie Bauer has a free rewards program that generates a $10 gift card and emails it out nearly every month. Ten dollars at Eddie Bauer doesn’t go far, but at the Eddie Bauer outlet store you can find pants for $15–25 and shirts for $5–10 in the clearance section, so I pick up $80 pants for $10 out of pocket regularly, and I’m really picky with pants. My wife regularly comes home from resale shops or the Salvation Army with name brand clothes that still have the tags on them. Going to a Salvation Army in a nice area almost guarantees you’ll find something good, and recently they have created so many more rewards and incentives they almost pay you to get stuff out of their stores. For example, my wife has a rewards card, takes her (very old by now) student ID, uses a reusable Salvation Army bag, and finds items with the right tag (each day a different tag has a discount) and walks out with a bag full of quality clothes for $5.The New Age of CouponingCoupoing has changed in the past ten years, more and more apps are taking over, especially rebate apps in the place of clipping coupons. There are also apps that slowly build up credits for gift cards for retailers like Walmart and Amazon such as Shopkick and Checkpoints. Microsoft Bing rewards will also give you points for using it and looking at their sponsored content and you can exchange thsoe points for gift cards or memberships to things like Hulu Plus. Websites like Hip2Save, The Penny Hoarder, and The Crazy Coupon Lady have guides and tips on how to save money on all kinds of things as well and go through these rebate and gift card apps to show you which are worth the time. Stay away from paid surveys unless those websites suggest them as most are a waste of time that just take your data and say you are ineligible for the reward. With Shopkick, Checkpoints, and Bing my wife and I have made thousands of dollars over the years, which made up 100% of our discretionary income (for item purchases, Mystery shopping paid for 100% of our entertainment budget, but more on that later) and went towards things on our lists.Cell Phone SavingsIgnore the latest phones and get a cheaper option that will run on your network to avoid monthly payments that tie up your income. Waiting is the best policy; if you feel more comfortable with a new phone from a major carrier look for the sales that are actually sales. Usually that happens when a phone is more mature, when it’s been around between six months and two years. For example, when I switched phone companies the major driver was a promotion that cut my device cost down from $30 to $15 per month and made my wife’s phone free from $17 per month, on top of having less expensive service. My service bill went down from $190 to $123 (for much better service and much more data) and I am paying $360 total for my phone instead of $720, and $0 for my wife’s phone instead of $400. They were still relatively new phones with top tier processors and were much better than our previous phones, but the carrier really wanted to sell those phones. Unfortunately, phones these days are made to die within a few years of regularly use, due to battery issues if you use your phone a lot like I do, so for most people it isn’t feasible to just keep the same phone for ten years anymore. You can buy a replacement battery once you start to have issues and swap it if you are feeling courageous, or pay someone to do it, but it would be less hassle to get a new phone that works better overall.Car Buying CalculationsThe same goes for cars, try to keep the payments down or buy used if you can manage. Leasing is a good way to keep the payment down, but in the long run it may be more expensive as you are always going to have a payment. The dynamics of car buying has changed, though, so if you buy a new car under the right circumstances it may end up only being only a few thousand dollars more than the used cars available, but you have a longer warranty and more confidence in the vehicle. For example, when I was buying my wife’s car I ran price over use from the current mileage to 100,000 miles of the used vehicles available and compared that to the use out of a new car to 100,000 miles. I didn’t do straight depreciation with the expectation of some value at the end because I expect to drive a car until it won’t drive anymore and can’t rely on resale value due to unexpected damage and other factors, this was simply the selling price of the vehicle over 100,000 miles. I didn’t factor in costs like fuel and oil changes because those are constant, since it was pretty much the same vehicle I was comparing. Here’s the price breakdown: the used cars would cost 20 cents a mile and the new car would cost 21 cents a mile. On top of that the used car would be paid in cash and with the new car I could finance at 0%, and use the money elsewhere (in this case put it in the market and make more than 0%). This only worked because I was buying at the right time, I waited until the next year’s models came out and went after “last year’s” brand new cars that were left, which gives you much better incentives and can even give you more money off the more features you add to a car. Also, you can get a slight break on a car the longer it has been on a lot because technically it’s older, even though it has 0 miles. I would suggest passing on “loaner” or “demo” cars, though, because the break they give you for the 2,000 or 4,000 miles the car has driven is less than the depreciation cost of those miles.Once you find the car shop around for car insurance and homeowners/renters insurance at least twice a year. Every six months rates change and new promotions come around so you could save some money. The same goes for any subscription-based service, such as Sirius radio (if you really must have it), and home internet. The more you do it the easier it gets and a twenty minute phone call could save you hundreds of dollars.Cut the CordCut out TV. I have some pretty strong opinions about TVs, mostly because people spend (or owe) thousands of dollars on home theater setups for theoretical performance they can’t even take advantage of and the endless marketing using made-up and misleading metrics, but that’s an entirely different topic. Not only does cable TV waste time you could be using to be more productive, either around the house or with money-making activities, it is also one of the largest wastes of money I come across. The bottom line is cable TV is incredibly costly, I have seen people make or break their debt and retirement goals based on their cable bill costs. Telecom companies always give bundle pricing for TV and internet, once I had to ask six times for the internet-only pricing because getting TV service added on makes those companies money in the long run because their super-duper promotions run out and they can bill at a higher rate. That shouldn’t be problem if you are checking prices at least every six months, but most people don’t even notice until years have gone by and they have already spent way to much for their TV package.Use an over-the-air antenna or streaming service if you really want TV. Services like Netflix are less expensive and cut out commercials so you save about ten minutes per episode and give you more accountability because it shows you exactly how many episodes or movies you have watched. Over-the-air and streaming doesn’t cover all sports like the list of ESPN channels do, but watching sports doesn’t pay the bills. If you really need to watch sports pool together with other people, since watching together is a better experience anyway, and either split the cost or let that guy with the giant TV that is going to make bad money decisions anyway pay for the 5,000 channels just to get the sports coverage he wants. I had a chat with a guy who really didn’t want to give up his sports and showed him it would save him money if he actually went to Buffalo Wild Wings and had a meal there every time there was a game he really wanted to watch, after seeing the numbers, and admitting how much he went to BWW to watch sports anyway, he agreed.Get Into the Gig EconomyWith the time saved from cutting out TV you can either work more around the house and take care of that to-do list or get a second job or gig based on your skills and interests. Economic analysts estimate the number of people with a second job will only increase in the future. My father in-law is a physical therapist full time, mostly for the elderly, and has a side-gig playing music at retirement communities and is able to save 100% of his gig money while doing something he loves. Mystery shopping is a decent gig when done right that can help you save money. Check out the Mystery Shopping Forum if you want more information, and know that no mystery shopping company ever contacts you to work for them, you have to seek them out. The resources mentioned above, The Penny Hoarder, Crazy Coupon Lady, Hip2Save, along with other websites also have guides to cheap and free activities as well, like free Zoo or Museum days and free concerts, so you can find something interesting to fill that time saved.Reuse, Restore, RepairAnother use of the newfound time you have from cutting out TV could be picking. I don’t advise getting a beat-up truck and driving around neighborhoods looking for scrap metal, but keeping an eye out for good furniture or appliances can save you tons of money, if you’re willing to use something that isn’t brand new. Reusing, restoring, and repairing is a hobby on it’s own and can get addictive, Pinterest is filled with completed projects and ideas. Getting beat up furniture for free is a good way to learn how to work with materials as well before you find something more worthwhile. After a while of keeping your eyes open, even if you don’t get anything, you get an idea of areas that throw out good stuff. For example, in my in-law’s neighborhood people throw away perfectly good furniture because they simply don’t want it. We are around enough that we know some of the people there so if they’re around we ask why they are throwing things away to make sure there aren’t serious issues with it. We ended up getting thirteen padded banquet chairs, two wooden rocking chairs, and a plastic office mat, all in good condition. A little wood glue, sanding, and painting and the rocking chairs were perfect, especially since my wife wanted them white and not the wood stain we found them in.Another option is at nicer apartment complexes people often throw away perfectly good things simply because they are moving and don’t want to haul them around. My wife and I actually did this with a perfectly good microwave and grill because the house we bought had both already, our old microwave was picked up within an hour. Again, it’s best if you can talk to those that are moving out to find out the condition of the items. I would never touch a used mattress and am very wary of anything with cloth, but hardwood furniture and appliances are pretty safe. My new neighborhood uses the social media app “Nextdoor” to connect people, which is one way I got quite a few useful things. You can request items, look for items to buy, or if you’re lucky be the first in line to pick up a free TV or two when someone gets a new one, which I did.Let people around you know what you want or need as well. When our microwave died my wife and I both asked for microwave recommendations on Facebook and a friend quickly messaged us saying her husband bought a microwave (which retailed for $300) that didn’t fit their space and that we could have it for free if we would come pick it up (and that was the microwave we placed next our dumpster and was picked up by someone else). We did the same with some power tools I didn’t have and we were able to borrow tools instead of buying or renting them. We told all our family we needed furniture when we moved and my grandfather found out his office wanted to get rid of some furniture that had been in their basement for years and I ended up with a magnificent giant desk, an office chair, two lightly used upholstered waiting-room type chairs, and a computer monitor. My parents gave us a set of couches and a love seat when we moved as well. If you can stand not having all new things you can save tons of money; our couches were free, compared to our friends that spent a little over $5,000 for their couches, and are still paying them off.The Money PitOne of the most common problems I see are “phantom dollars”. Money comes in and money goes out and there is no record of where the money is going. Being disciplined with spending allows you to take control of the money you make. Shopping needs to shift from going to the store and picking up things that look good to making lists and sticking to them. If you are grocery shopping prepare a list and don’t deviate from it. Having a pre-made meal plan for the week can also reduce your costs and make that grocery shopping list easier to create. Cooking at home is cheaper than going out, fast food is both costly and unhealthy.You have to live like you have no money. People who live like they have money typically already spent it. If you have debt or want to save money you need to operate from a zero discretionary dollars frame of mind. Most people will justify small purchases or even big ones if they feel they deserve it or had a bad day. If you want to be free of debt and on a good track you have zero dollars to spend on yourself until your necessities, including paying off debt, are met, and the same goes for saving. Your retirement is a bill you have to pay every month or you most likely won’t be able to survive later in life. Lists come in handy to remove the emotion from purchases, and you have to get good at saying no to yourself, such as when it seems like everyone you pass has those little cartons of pretzels at the mall; just say no. Here’s where mystery shopping can come in handy as well. When my wife and I first got married our entire entertainment budget was through mystery shopping; we would go out to eat or bowling or to a movie and have it reimbursed by completing the mystery shop.One thing I learned early on was the power of lists. If there is something you want that is not a necessity put it on a list, whether that be a wishlist online or in a notebook or Word/Google doc. Spend time researching the item to find the best option while you save up for it. What I have found is sometimes after a while the need or desire for the item disappears or a solution appears. For example, my wife wanted a tablet for media consumption, Facebook, and internet browsing, but I didn’t want to pay hundreds of dollars for one or even a hundred dollars for an iffy model. A couple months later my mother wanted to change cell phone providers (wanting my assistance with the process) and was adding 4G service to her current tablet. I read over the promotions and found out you could get a tablet for free if you have service for it, so we got the free tablet and moved the SIM card into my mother tablet so she got what she wanted and I got what I wanted, all for free.The Saving Frame of MindThere are many strategies and processes to save money, you have to find the ones that work for you and keep looking for ways to save money. There are probably things out there I don’t know about that could save me some money, so it’s important to always be in that frame of mind. Always be willing to do the math to figure out when a deal is really a deal. There are a million little decisions every day that add up, so this only touches on a few tips.All this is fine and dandy, but it takes discipline to stick to a predefined plan and continually check to make sure you’re on track. I sit down with families that make well over the national average with less than average or no debt that never get it together because they don’t want to change their lifestyle in any way, and I also sit down with families that make under the national average with high debt but manage to be disciplined enough to pay off their debts and save for their future. Getting out of debt and saving for your future is a lifestyle, not just a few quick and easy steps here and there. Everything you do has to follow a pattern and a process that gets you to your goal. It’s not a sexy lifestyle, most people prefer to live like they’ve already arrived and carry debt around forever, but being debt free and financially independent is better than any thing you can buy (and owe money on).
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