Astrologer Linda Schurman feels 2012 is going to be a rough year for all people around the world due to physical and psychological conditions and events, based on a number of configurations. Join Jason Hartman as he interviews Linda, editor and publisher of Soothesayer newsletter and author of What Next? A Survival Guide to the 21st Century, about her predictions for the year and beyond. Linda discusses government overreach with the National Defense Authorization Act, SOPA, and PIPA, our outrageous national debt that is owed to so many countries around the world, the involvement of major financial institutions in governments worldwide, such as Goldman Sachs, the systematic retraction of our constitutional rights, current and upcoming unemployment figures, the demise of the dollar, and a lengthy depression. She also touches on climatic extremes and an increase in earthquakes and volcanic activity around the world, as well as the possibility for a real water crisis. For more details, listen at: www.HolisticSurvival.com. Jason and Linda also talk about the distinct differences in commodity investments, such as precious metals and real estate versus derivatives and hedge funds, the inevitable encroachment of inflation with the printing presses running overtime, spewing out more and more worthless bills, and the effect of the government’s reaction to our economic crisis. Linda feels that the states will begin taking over legal matters, reinstating state rights.
Linda expresses concern about the U.S. involvement with Iran, feeling it is a very dangerous situation. She feels that the Occupy Wall Street Movement will become more cohesive and perhaps form a third political party. She discusses the real possibility for multitudes of emergencies, whether water shortages, earthquakes, glacial melting and the rise of oceans, and advises people to be prepared. But she also feels there will be breakthroughs in energy sources and health during this tumultuous time. Linda’s book, What Next? calls for action by humanity to stop the insanity of corruption, greed, war, and waste and misuse of resources and human life. Linda Schurman has had a private practice in astrology for over thirty- four years. She serves an international clientele that includes corporations, financial service companies and private individuals. Linda holds a B.A. in English and Education and is the author of numerous articles. She is currently editor and publisher of the newsletter “The SootheSayer” which is in print and online at (http://soothesayer.com). A long-standing member of the National Council for Geocosmic Research, she has appeared on radio and television. A mother to five grown children and grandmother to six, she resides in Ithaca, New York.
Narrator: Welcome to The Holistic Survival Show with Jason Hartman. The economic storm brewing around the world is set to spill into all aspects of our lives. Are you prepared? Where are you going to turn for the critical life skills necessary to survive and prosper? The Holistic Survival Show is your family’s insurance for a better life. Jason will teach you to think independently, to understand threats and how to create the ultimate action plan. Sudden change or worst case scenario, you’ll be ready. Welcome to Holistic Survival, your key resource for protecting the people, places and profits you care about in uncertain times. Ladies and gentlemen, your host Jason Hartman.
Jason Hartman: Welcome to The Holistic Survival Show. This is your host, Jason Hartman, where we talk about protecting the people, places and profits you care about in these uncertain times. We have a great interview for you today and we will be back with that in less than 60 seconds on The Holistic Survival Show. And, by the way, be sure to visit our website at HolisticSurvival.com. You can subscribe to our blog which is totally free, has loads of great information and there’s just a lot of good content for you on the site. So make sure you take advantage of that at HolisticSurvival.com. We’ll be right back.
Linda Schurman: Here’s your chance to catch up on all of those Creating Wealth shows that you’ve missed. There’s a 3 book set with shows 1 through 60, all digital download. You saved $94 by buying this 3 book set. Go ahead and get these advanced strategies for wealth creation. For more details, go to JasonHartman.com.
Jason Hartman: It’s my pleasure to welcome Linda Sherman to the show. She is the author of What Next? A Survival Guide to the 21st Century. And she had published this book back in 2007 and virtually all of her predictions have come true. So, as we head into the new year of 2012, what can we expect in 2012 and beyond? Obviously, many people think this will be a seminal year in history as the past few years really have been in so many ways, whether it is a subject of globalization, financial speculation, religion, law, education, media, meaning, beauty, all sorts of things, let’s kind of get into it with Linda and let’s see what the future holds for us. Linda, welcome. How are you?
Linda Schurman: Well, I’m fine. It’s a pleasure to be on your show.
Jason Hartman: Pleasure to have you as well. And, Linda, where are you coming to us from today?
Linda Schurman: Ithaca, New York.
Jason Hartman: Oh, you’re in Upstate New York. That’s where my grandparents are from.
Linda Schurman: Where Cornell University and Ithaca College reside.
Jason Hartman: Fantastic, fantastic. What’s interesting about you is I heard you on another radio show – a very famous radio show – and I must be honest, I never thought I would have an astrologer on the show. But your interview was so insightful and so interesting, I was just riveted to the radio listening and wanted to get you on our show to talk more about it. So I’m glad you’re here and I want to hear what you have to say about 2012 and beyond.
Linda Schurman: Well, 2012 is a very, very difficult year in human civilization broadly speaking because we’re confronted with a number of configurations, mainly the Pluto Uranus Square and also the aspect throughout the year to the Neptune of The United States which doesn’t mean much to you, but to us it has to do with the need for emergency reactions to things. We need to have people who can solve emergencies because I feel the economy, the global economy is going from bad to worse quite frankly. Real unemployment in The United States is over 22% and most people have lost their savings, lost their retirements. The abuse of our financial system which was deregulated over a long period of time, but the worst deregulations took place in 1999 when they got rid of the Glass-Steagall Act and instituted the Commodities Modernization Act which allowed the derivatives market, which before had been under control, to go completely out of control to the point where derivatives trade is now over $700 trillion which doesn’t even count the over the counter dark market derivatives trade which is where all the money has gone.
As we all know in 2008, which I predicted in my book would be the beginning of the great depression, that in 2008 we had a major, major crash. And also between 2007 and 2008, the real estate bubble broke and we had this enormous crash in real estate. We have unprecedented, in history, government debts all over the world as we know what has happened in the European union and many of the European nations are really officially bankrupt with debt and then we had the biggest in this country, personal or populace debt that we have ever had in history, families that may be present making maybe $40,000 a year have $40,000 in credit card debt and maybe another $200,000 in mortgage debt when their houses are underwater. All of the political spin that you have around it, the people running for office are going to fix this economy or whatever, it’s just not going to happen. I feel that things are going to get worse, even in the second half of the year commodities are going to come down. I feel that the currency crises that we’re currently having with the euro dollar are going to get worse rather than better because the European union doesn’t have a central bank in which they can print a lot of money as the United States does.
Jason Hartman: But one thing I must say about that, Linda, and I don’t know what you’re going to say next, you would only think that printing money is a good thing if you’re a Keynesian. And I think printing money leads to just massive inflation.
Linda Schurman: Exactly true, but it’s in a sense better than massive deflation or a complete and total crash. This is why I do not see this year that anybody is going to be able to solve anything essentially for this very reason that you stated. Here in The United States, the likelihood is eventually, either this year and going into the next several years, that Bernanke is going to be busy printing money and that the US dollar will eventually become devalued that we will have inflation. This, they consider to be better than massive deflation which occurred in the 1930s when you could buy a loaf of bread for a few pennies. The point is that no matter how you look at it, we’re in major, major trouble.
Now, my advice to people, in my book and on my newsletters, I have an online newsletter, what I have advised people to do way back when before all of this happened was to get out of debt. And interestingly enough I realized with your podcast and what you do to get into income producing real estate that when the price of real estate comes crashing down which it has in so many places, if you’re positioned you can produce income from rent. This is what my husband and I did that we now have rental income, we have no debt. We paid cash for our house and we have an adjacent apartment that we rent. But the problem is most people are in such major debt that the kids have college loans, are coming out of college with $100,000 worth of college loan debt.
Jason Hartman: Or worse. You know what is really scary, by the way, Linda, about the student loan debt, I wonder sometimes if that was really part of the vast conspiracy to just enslave the middle class because it’s always been the mantra “Go to college, get a good education.” And the college inflation has been absurd. And it’s been possible to inflate college tuitions so much because the stupid government has been in there guaranteeing student loans and when you guarantee student loans and make them more plentiful, then you have more money chasing a limited supply of services – college degrees would be the services in this case – so the price match really goes up and these universities can just charge ridiculous amounts of money which they do. And college tuition has inflated much faster than the rate of general inflation for many years now. But here is the thing that is so scary about it. It’s that student loan debt is not dischargeable in bankruptcy. And this is something that is literally a form of debt slavery. These kids, they could leave school with $100-$200 grand in student loan debt and they can never get away from it. I mean they could declare bankruptcy once, twice over the course of the next 16 years and they’ve still gotta pay that student loan debt no matter what.
Linda Schurman: You’re absolutely right, Jason. It’s heartbreaking. You’re absolutely right. And further, to what you’re saying, back in 2005, there was a so-called bankruptcy reform bill passed that makes it now difficult across the board for individuals to declare bankruptcy. So that was passed by both parties in Congress so bankruptcy has an out as a way of discharging, relieving or minimizing your debt has been severely again because the credit card companies are such a powerful lobby and the banksters as we would say that hold those credit cards had been so powerful that the government and the monopolies and the banksters have gotten in bed together and passed legislation that is making criminal activities legal such as the subprime loans and the financialization of subprime mortgages that were packaged and sold off to, guess what, Greece, Portugal, Ireland and Italy.
Jason Hartman: Iceland. Don’t forget Iceland.
Linda Schurman: Yes, and Iceland. It’s interesting, though. Iceland had sort of reformed itself. It sort of threw everybody out and started over again and they seem to be doing okay. But this is what it’s going to take. I feel that we are in for a grand, long depression and that eventually the bad guys, the monopolies, the banksters and the government, which is building up to be an agency which is taking our constitutional rights away from us such as the recent National Defense Authorization Act signed by Obama that allows our military to arrest us without due process, which means that we’re not legally charged with anything. We don’t get a lawyer, we don’t get a trial or anything.
Jason Hartman: Scary, very scary.
Linda Schurman: This is very serious. And then as a contract you have the recent crashing and burning of MF global who was headed up by Jon Corzine, the quintessential insider of all time.
Jason Hartman: Goldman Sachs.
Linda Schurman: Goldman Sachs CEO.
Jason Hartman: Linda, why is it always Goldman Sachs is at the heart of everything, you know?
Linda Schurman: Well, I have said for a long time the secretary – I’m fond of calling it the Secretaries of the Treachery.
Jason Hartman: Instead of the treasury, the treachery, yeah.
Linda Schurman: Most of them are from Goldman Sachs, and I feel that the worst cartel in government that represented these agencies was during the Clinton years with Robert Rubin, former CEO of Goldman Sachs, Alan Greenspan and Lawrence Summers who I nearly passed out when Obama appointed him as his economic advisor. These guys, they pushed through legislation that killed the Glass-Steagall Act which had separated regular commercial lending banking from financial banking. And this is how mortgages got financialized and literally turned into derivatives in the Commodities Modernization Act which took the lid off of derivatives. And it’s just what we were turned into is a lot of very wealthy people at the top of the food chain could use the economy, even including people’s mortgages as their personal roulette wheel. And here we are. You mentioned the middle class and I always say what middle class?
Jason Hartman: Well, it’s still bigger than it is in most any country around the world but it’s getting smaller and that’s what is really bothering me and so many other people who are paying attention to it.
Linda Schurman: Well, I want to say that the government statistics – the end of December revealed that half of this nation is at or below the poverty line – one half. So I say to you if half of the population of this nation is at or below the poverty line, where’s the so-called middle class? It’s more or not an average but a median figure if you know about statistics. It’s a line drawn in the middle where maybe only a few people reside.
Jason Hartman: Right, right.
Linda Schurman: It’s some middle point between the top and the bottom. So my feeling, and you’re very sophisticated about these things, and a lot of people you’ve had on your podcast like Doug Casy – I’m a fan of his – I know it’s important for people who listen to this to say well what can I do? I think one of the important things is to wait until gold bottoms. It’s in a short term bear market. And kind of wait until a bottom in the second half of the year, as early as the end of August but probably by October we’re going to see gold rising again. So gold is a good place, just a hedge against currency instability where currency is going to be worth less and less. And even worse than its worth, it’s almost like nobody’s gonna believe in it anymore.
Jason Hartman: Yeah. And people should understand that currency is different than money. Money represents actual things that have intrinsic value, whereas currency is just a symbol of supposed value or fiat value. Linda, I want to ask you about a few things and kind of clarify a few things. I agree with you that debt is a major problem, both on a national level, a sovereign level for many nations, and of course The US and for individuals even more so, but a few things – I want to kind of smoke some stuff out. And I know this is not your specific area whereas it is mine. But when it comes to debt, I agree with you that debt is a huge problem. However, I think with so much inflation on the horizon, there is one type of debt that is very good and I call it self-liquidating debt, debt that is against income properties as long as it’s long term fixed rate debt that you can outsource to tenants.
Now, granted, we still have to live in a society where we have not had a complete collapse of civilization, where there’s some rule of law to some extent and there are some people who think we should just all move out to the woods and have cans of beans and a shotgun. I don’t quite think things are ever gonna get that bad because too many people remember how it was. And I don’t think civilization is really going to fall apart even though I’ve interviewed a lot of people on my show that think that. And it’s interesting. I went into doing this show several years ago when I started it thinking some of those thoughts myself, reading some of this material and listening to some of these people. And now that I’ve had a chance to really interview them, I think there’s likelihood of civil unrest in pockets and for short periods, similar to the LA Riots in the 90s and things here and there and some ugly stuff in the Occupy Wall Street front and the government scares me for sure with they’re just diminishing our rights more and more.
However, I think still, before The US is considered that bad a place, you have to ask yourself this question: Compared to what? And I think in The US we have a long way to fall before I would even consider leaving. There are so many people now that are talking about becoming an ex-pat. I’ve interviewed them on the show and, I mean, one of my friends, several of my friends are doing stuff around the world. One’s really into South America. He probably thinks he’s going to move his whole family from California to South America. Another one wants to leave The US and move to China. I’m like are you kidding? I don’t get it.
Linda Schurman: Jason, I totally agree with you. We’ve got to remember that we still do have the right to protest. We still do have the right to elect people or get rid of them or whatever. I agree with you. I think that the Occupy Wall Street movement and many of these other movements will eventually consolidate into a third political party that will have some clout over the next several years. That’s what I think is going to be the outcome. And this is the way we can do things, but I did predict in 2011 that we would see the beginning of the second American Revolution. Revolutions have a very bad track record of violence and upheaval, and sometimes they’ve replaced those they’ve thrown out with worse people. We’ve got the ability here to replace people eventually. I think it’s going to take a long time. I think the bottom of this depression will be around 2020.
But I think between 2024 and 2026 we’re going to see a new more egalitarian equal opportunity economy. We’re going to get our democracy back. There are going to be some new ideas. I think that there is going to be a solution to energy. As I said on the show that you heard me on, I believe that there’s going to be a new non-fossil fuel form of energy that will become major and centralized, that there are going to be breakthroughs in physics that are going to create something that nobody knows that much about at this point, probably hydrogen fusion, and the infrastructure will be set up in the 2020s around the world. I agree with you that many of my clients and people that I know are saying I’m going to relocate to Central and South America.
Jason Hartman: It’s too early to think like that.
Linda Schurman: Well, not only that, but we’re up against, as well, massive earthquakes that I think are beginning to take place around the world and volcanic eruptions. And many of the nations are not even counting climate extremes, earthquakes and volcanoes that we’re seeing happening at an increased rate and increased intensity during this time which I predicted in my book would be there through early 2016 – from the end of 2009 to early 2016. And I do feel that there is a very real danger of a major one hitting the California coast, particularly the San Francisco area. But we’re going to see a lot of tectonic events, especially in the Spring of this year. And so sometimes a person might move somewhere and find out they can’t live there. And also, like yourself, I sense in you a certain love of this country.
Jason Hartman: Oh, yes. Absolutely.
Linda Schurman: And I feel that way too. I feel we have a core potential here that needs to be reawakened. We have become lazy and lethargic and not paying any attention…
Jason Hartman: Luxury or prosperity or whatever you want to call it is the lull to apathy. And Americans have had it so good for so long that we have become complacent. But just take it back to what you were saying earlier. I hope you’re right that there really is a legitimately powerful third political party. Maybe it’s the Ron Paul type sect. I don’t know exactly what it would look like. I don’t know if it’s even possible because I’m afraid that the people really pulling the strings whether they be the Bilderberg Group or whoever really runs the world, I don’t know, but you know the way I think it might play out? I think instead of seeing a third party at a national level, we might see more of a movement towards state’s rights or state secession. And I’ve predicted, for many years now, that if Texas were to secede from The United States, it would become the Hong Kong of the United States. In other words, as Hong Kong is to China, Texas would be to The US. And so many productive, ambitious hardworking people would move there, seeking out greater opportunities, whereas you see places like California and New York, your state, and my former state California, my family’s from New York, that have these big oppressive governments and intrusive governments, you see people leave them. Maybe that would be the thing that would swing the pendulum back if you saw this sort of brain drain out of these other states.
Linda Schurman: I know what you’re saying, Jason. And in a way I agree in the sense that I see a great re-localization that could involve the states and the states making more and more of their own individual decisions and having closer framework. But I think it is going to be really communities that you live in and how the community reorganizes itself into local entrepreneurial enterprises. Small business is really what is the foundation for the good things in America.
Jason Hartman: No question. It’s not Wall Street, it’s Main Street, yes.
Linda Schurman: Right. And it is I think on that basis. But I think we have to face absolutely catastrophic environmental issues that are coming up. We have to learn to re-localize our food production to start organic farms. We’re at the verge with Neptune going into Pisces between February of this year and March of 2025. We’ve got global potable water crises staring us in the face. We’ve got mass extinction of life forms on earth that are just looking at the science of all of this. So we have to change the way we live. And I agree with you that re-localization is going to be extremely important.
Jason Hartman: Yeah. You are absolutely right. You know what is the obstacle, though? It’s not just what’s in people’s mind and their habits and so forth. You shop at the farmer’s market instead of the big corporate store, part of the corporatocracy, but the other problem, Linda, is the government. And one of the worst offenders, frankly, is the leftist Obama Administration. I mean they are trying to consolidate food production so they can control it, just like they’re consolidating the banks so they can control that. And, of course, it’s not just Obama – it’s a symptom of the whole government.
Linda Schurman: Yes. But I don’t know that’s so leftist. I think Obama is simply responding to the Agra business monopoly that are huge lobbyists.
Jason Hartman: Right. But he’s appointed people, the head of Monsanto or the former head of Monsanto that is now heading the Department of Agriculture. I mean this is just craziness.
Linda Schurman: Bush was even worse. He appointed all these people who were former CEOs or former heads of the companies he was supposed to regulate.
Jason Hartman: They’re all cut from the same cloth. You know I know this.
Linda Schurman: And we’re finding out now that Frakenfoods or these genetically engineered seeds are toxic to animals, devastating to the environment, using up more water and they do not reduce. They’re increasing the amount of insecticide we have to use.
Jason Hartman: You know what they do? They make a lot more money for companies like Monsanto and that’s the problem.
Linda Schurman: Exactly. And the worst damage Monsanto has done is in India and these other nations where they have forced local farmers to buy their seeds which are non-reproducible. I mean the evil just goes on and on. So, to me, I know the ideological stuff in politics today between the democrats and the republicans has to do with big government versus business. To me, right now we don’t even have that choice. It’s big business and banks controlling big government and big government enforcing what these people want on the rest of the people to their own.
Jason Hartman: You couldn’t be more accurate. Wall Street has purchased the US Senate. They support both sides of the aisle. They just hedge their bet. They give it to the republicans and the democrats so that when either party is in control they just get what they want. It’s just the corporatocracy.
Linda Schurman: I would recommend that your listeners go to GetMoneyOut.com which is a website that can have you vote for getting all private money out of all political campaigns as a constitutional amendment.
Jason Hartman: That would be a dream come true, but I just don’t think it’s gonna happen but it would be great.
Linda Schurman: I think we have to start at the grass roots. And I feel that these grass roots things eventually – they’re not gonna happen tomorrow, they’re not gonna happen this year – eventually they’re going to happen. We have to get behind them, we have to push them. We really have to. And that’s why I’m happy about Occupy Wall Street and even the Tea Partyers. I’m not saying I agree with everything that all those movements are proposing, but I think they’re the beginning of something. In fact, I was surprised some people emailed me and said some of the Tea Partyers wanted to unite with the Occupy Wall Street.
Jason Hartman: It is a continuum, I agree. My friends, most of them tend to be on the right side of the aisle and that’s where I’ve always leaned. But I see the flaws in both of them. They’re just the same thing. G. Edward Griffin, the author of The Creature From Jekyll Island who you’re probably familiar with…
Linda Schurman: I read that book.
Jason Hartman: Isn’t it great? When I had him on the show, he said something very telling. He said that what you see in the media between the liberals and the conservatives, the democrats and the republicans is you see something that’s really tantamount to a wrestling match that you see on television. It’s fake. It’s just entertainment. It’s bread and circuses. It’s just meant to distract us from the real agenda of the globalists that are trying to hollow the country out and they are just trying to destroy the middle class so that they can gain more control of resources and raise the prices and reduce the access to those resources.
Linda Schurman: You’re absolutely right. I couldn’t agree more. I call them weapons of mass distraction.
Jason Hartman: Weapons of mass distraction, I love that.
Linda Schurman: The media for the most part except for programs like yours and Coast to Coast and many other shows that do have – and on the internet – then you have a chance to hear people express what they feel is the truth rather than this stuff that you hear on the mainstream media that amounts to absolutely no information whatsoever. In fact, people come over here from other countries and say you don’t have any news over here.
Jason Hartman: It’s amazing, I know. It’s just the corporatocracy. It’s all sanitized. It’s the same top 6 stories that run in a cycle. You’d think if you turn on the television and watch any of the news stations all day you’d think there’s nothing else going on but 6 things in the whole world. It’s mind boggling.
Linda Schurman: You’re absolutely right, Jason. I couldn’t agree with you more.
Jason Hartman: Yeah, I know. European news is far deeper than ours. But it’s a global thing. The only free news that is done by individuals and I say the internet and the blogosphere is one of the more reliable places to get your news, believe it or not.
Linda Schurman: Well, we’ve got to be very vigilant because there’s a new bill in Congress, sponsored by Joseph Lieberman that would have the right for the government to take off the internet anything they felt that was some kind of a threat to them.
Jason Hartman: Oh, boy.
Linda Schurman: The founding fathers must be rolling over in their graves now. It’s just amazing.
Jason Hartman: Our founders, as I’ve said over and over again in my book, Thomas Jefferson would be coming back as a ghost preaching on the mountaintop as to how we’ve betrayed. The founding fathers were such a unique group of intelligent individuals. And they had spats with each other and disagreements from the left and right. But they got it together to form this great country. And we’ve lost that thread and we’ve got to get it back. And I think we will. I think that the 2020 is in there.
And I don’t think that China’s gonna be the next great power. You can’t breathe the air there. They’re running out of water because the Himalayan glaciers have melted. The Yangtze and Yellow rivers in China are so filled with factory pollutants because they had no environmental laws there. So you can’t breathe the air or drink the water and I just think that China is in major trouble. The people are getting very, very sick and dying in that country and they’re keeping a lid on it as China always has, kept the lid on publicizing anything. And I also am predicting this year that China’s gonna have another rebellion of its own, a Tiananment Square type of revolution is going to happen over there.
Jason Hartman: Let me take a brief pause. We’ll be back in just a minute.
Narrator: Now, you can get Jason’s Creating Wealth in Today’s Economy Home Study Course. All the knowledge and education revealed in a 9 hour day of the Creating Wealth Bootcamp, created in a home study course for you to dive into at your convenience. For more details, go to JasonHartman.com.
Jason Hartman: It’s interesting because my friend has spent, I don’t know, 10 months or so in China on his last trip there, opened a company there, has a company in The US, a company in Ireland and a company in China now. And he keeps writing these emails to our group of friends saying “I’m here in China with virtually no government interference – it’s amazing what capitalism can do”, blah, blah, blah. And I wrote back and I said “Does getting run over by a tank constitute government interference?
Linda Schurman: As long as they like what he’s doing over there and it employs Chinese workers who will work for about $0.36 an hour, as long as you can outsource the American labor force to cheap almost slave labor abroad, and China is benefiting – it’s fine – but at any time they can either throw you out or arrest you. You’ve got to remember that you’re in a communist dictatorship in China that allows capitalistic enterprises to come in. And their companies, they’re all owned by their government. So you have to keep these things in mind when you’re doing. Right now it’s a heyday for certain people who are able to go over there and because the labor costs are so low they do not have to put any pollution devices on their factories. They make a whole lot of money at the top. But eventually it’s going to compete…These people are gonna fall on their swords, the people controlling things in the world today are going to fall on their swords and we will sort it out in the last analysis. But there are a lot of innocent people who will be victimized by all of this along the way.
Jason Hartman: And people who already have been. Now, why do you say they’re going to fall on their swords? How do you know that? How will that happen and why will it happen?
Linda Schurman: I practiced what is called mundane astrology which is the state of nations, of corporations, of human civilization itself. But I look at individual charts of countries and I can see, in a few years from now, China and their leadership is going to face major, major problems and challenges that they will be in some kind of revolution or upheaval which is spreading all over the world and they’re not going to be exempt from it. And many of the people who have controlled things harshly are going to be brought down and we’re seeing that already throughout the world. It started with the Arab Spring in the Middle Eastern nations. The big question mark is when these people are brought down, so to speak, who is going to replace them? And what new ideas are going to come into play? And these are all looming questions for which there are no answers at the moment but I am an optimist and I think over the long term humanity will have a mass consciousness raising and we will recognize that we need to live in concert with the earth and in cooperation with each other – and when that day comes, we will have an entirely new kind of civilization.
Jason Hartman: Linda, let me ask you for a moment you made a remark that you thought commodities were going to decline in price and then you also mentioned gold. And, of course, you probably mean silver tandem with it or precious metals in general.
Linda Schurman: I do.
Jason Hartman: I want to just ask you about that a little bit. And, in order to ask you the question I’ve got to just give you a little bit. And I know you’ve looked at my shows and so forth and I just want to run my philosophy by you for a moment if I may and I want to know what you think of it because I want to know if I’m doing the right thing or the wrong thing. I think it’s right but people who live in a vacuum and fall too in love with their own ideas usually fall on their sword. So I never want to be that person. But generally speaking, and this is just in a nutshell – it takes hours to explain this – I did a seminar for a group of investors – it’s a 9 hour day basically where I go through all of this stuff, but very, very briefly. My favorite asset class is income property. And there are a few reasons why, but mainly it’s because I have something that I call the ultimate investing equation. And basically it works something like this. Basically, what I say is I say buy properties where you get the property far below the cost of construction or replacement where the land is free so you’re not buying in expensive areas like California or anything. You’re buying in areas like Dallas, Indianapolis, Atlanta, Phoenix, where you’re buying properties for $30 to $50 to maybe $70 per square foot. And the land is free, where it would cost $80 to $120 per square foot to rebuild those properties.
Now, I call this, oddly enough, packaged commodities investing because I really think that the play is in the commodities, the concrete, the steel, the lumber, the petroleum products, the copper wire, the glass, all of the ingredients, the energy, all of the ingredients that goes into building a house or an apartment building, right? And what I say is I say buy these packaged commodities below their cost today. Look at it this way. If you had to buy commodities on the commodities exchange, you’d have to pay the current trading price of copper or lumber or gold or silver or soybeans or coffee beans or pork bellies or whatever the commodity was, right?
So now, with beat up real estate, you can buy them for less than their costs and, not just that, you can finance them for three decades at incredibly low fixed rates, whereas now if someone gets a mortgage on a property, they might borrow that money at 4 and a half to 5 percent and not pay that mortgage off until 2042. I mean wow. By 2042, we’ll have almost another 100 million people in this country. And then you look at the population around the world which will increase dramatically by then, and all of those people consume these same what I call packaged commodities around the world. So they’re not just a US thing. They’re not just tied to the dollar. And then what you do is you take that long-term fixed rate debt that’s 3 decades long and you outsource it to somebody called a tenant.
I invest in gold and silver as well. But I look at the gold and silver as just a defensive strategy where you’re just simply saying “This is a way to save money to store wealth.” It’s better than saving it in fake fiat dollars that are just paper and ink because at least one thing, now we have 7 billion people on Earth, one thing that pretty much 7 million people agree is that gold and silver are money.
Linda Schurman: That’s exactly my philosophy that I don’t look at gold and silver per say as commodity. When I talk about commodities, I’m talking about how they’re traded in the derivative exchanges, the future trading and the price going up and down on that score. You’re talking about the actual ownership on something that has intrinsic value and those are two different things.
Jason Hartman: Interesting distinction. Tell me more.
Linda Schurman: There are people that make money on derivatives exchanges, trading commodity futures. And I think they’re going to get burned the second half of this year from June on in that area. However, I am 100% with you, and all means through the ages, interestingly enough, for thousands of years, the number 1 wealth for people ultimately has been land, mainly farmland. And I think your plan sounds very, very good. I think if you own something outright, you own it and you can lease it and rent it, that you’re in a very, very good position. And I think you have a very good plan.
Jason Hartman: So just one more part of that plan if I may – the reason I like the debt against the property, though, is because when it’s fixed rate debt – and right now I believe the true inflation rate is about 9.5%, whereas the government of course underquotes as they always have really but especially since the 80s or the late 70s, they’ve really, really misquoted inflation. And so they tell us they would have us believe that inflation’s about 3 or 4 percent when it’s really close to 10. But I think we may see inflation, Linda, that is easily well above 20, 30, 40 percent in this country in the future as the entitlement time bomb of $60 trillion to $130 trillion dollars comes home to rouse. That’s gonna be an ugly one. And the government attempts to keep its promise by inflating away the debt. And China starts balking and Japan starts saying why should we buy these treasury bills anymore? They’re gonna be worthless. The US is printing money like it’s going out of style.
So what you do is you take advantage of something that I call – I coined a little phrase around it – I call it inflation induced debt destruction. And what happens is that inflation transfers wealth from lenders to borrowers. Oddly enough, the debtors, the one who benefits when inflation comes along, as long as, of course, the debt is tied to a real asset that produces income that you don’t pay the debts yourself on your income property – someone else pays the debt, the tenant does – and the debt is fixed rate for a long term. As long as you follow all of those rules, it seems like the people that, if inflation comes – and you and I both think it will, some people think it won’t – but if it comes, you’re just gonna benefit.
Think about it. If you owe a million dollars on a real estate portfolio today, and say inflation’s just 10%, in real dollars, one year from now, you really only owe $900,000 because inflation keeps eating the value of that debt.
Linda Schurman: And that’s how I think Bernanke is going to pay down the debt.
Jason Hartman: The US debt.
Linda Schurman: By printing more dollars, creating dollar inflation. And there’s two things. There’s dollar inflation and there’s price inflation. And they’re not exactly the same thing.
Jason Hartman: They aren’t. And I’m glad you mentioned that because what you’re getting at there – just so the listeners know – is that the academic definition of inflation is just simply creating more money. The result that you see, the symptom of that is you see higher prices usually. Now, there’s a lag time there and it’s usually about 18 months to two years historically because what happens is inflation occurs or you should say price inflation occurs when you have too many dollars chasing a limited supply of goods and services. And that takes a little while to play out. And now what we’ve got is we’ve got the banks just hording the money.
Linda Schurman: They’re not lending it to anybody and all of these crazy foreclosures that are going on very often are very much in limbo. People are trying to refinance their mortgages and they paperwork you to death, they never get it done, and you sit there forever and ever. It’s such a confused pile of mess.
Jason Hartman: Well, I think one of the things that’s happening there is the banks have taken all of this money from the taxpayers, these bailouts. And the government has said, look, in return for this money we want you to start modifying loans and helping people in foreclosure and all of that kind of stuff. And so they’ve done it. It’s window dressing. It’s a big lie. They’ve set these departments, they say they’ll modify loans and what they’ve done is a drop in the bucket. They’ve done a few thousand loan modifications. I remember Charles Payne, the Wall Street guy once on his program I heard him say on average every loan modification, the B of A or I call them the mafia, Bank of Annoying, B of A are like the most hated country in America I think, they have done every loan modification that’s cost the government like $800,000 to modify a loan that’s $120,000. It’s just insane.
Linda Schurman: You’re absolutely right. And you know what’s even further crooked scheme on their part is they used Bank of America, for instance, one of the worst, used an illegal entity to process the subprime mortgages to begin with and now various states’ supreme courts are ruling those entities as illegal. And so even their foreclosure process has been rendered illegal.
Jason Hartman: The robo-signing, yeah.
Linda Schurman: Yes, absolutely. And so many of these people are saying I’m just gonna sit here. Let them foreclose. Let them try to get me out. The whole process was illegal to begin with. So you have that further boomerang thrown into the situation.
Just to make your point about your plan is I have a friend here in this area who has bought about 4 houses with 3 apartments in each house. And he got like 30 year mortgages on each one of those. His own house is paid for, but he used that equity. So one rent – he has 3 rental apartments in each of those buildings. One rent makes his mortgage payment and his taxes so that the other two rents are pure profit for him. And he’s retired on that. And this area that I live in has a shortage of rental properties because we have Cornell University. We have Ithaca College, we have a lot of colleges around.
Jason Hartman: And the other thing you have is you have so many people that either can’t get a new loan if they want to buy a house or they’re cycling out of the ownership market because they’ve been foreclosed on. And many times it was a strategic default, so it made sense for them.
Linda Schurman: Exactly true.
Jason Hartman: What were you gonna say, Linda, that happened in Kansas. I was kind of curious.
Linda Schurman: Yes. The state supreme court, I believe it was either in 2009 or 2010, ruled that the mortgages issued through this illegal entity were illegal if they weren’t valid and therefore the foreclosure process on the people who had the houses was also invalid. And that has been spreading to other states in state supreme court ruling. I haven’t tracked how many other states and now their supreme courts have also ruled this. But, again, you mentioned earlier how the states are going to take over a lot of the ruling and legal processes in that sense of the word, that you’re going to see a re-localization of things.
Jason Hartman: And I think that re-localization’s going to be good for all, except the corporatocracy who wants to control us and limit our resources and raise out prices on things. No question about it. Well, Linda, what else do you predict for the future? Just to kind of wrap up here, we’ve been talking a long time and you’re so interesting to talk to. I really like your work.
Linda Schurman: Well, I like what you’re doing too, Jason. I think it’s great. I think most of the issues, I am really, really concerned about our ensnarling ourselves with Iran. I think there’s going to be a lot of threats and a lot of confusion this year about are we going to go or is Israel going to go to war with Iran because of their nuclear thing – they just announced that they enriched the uranium today and I think that is going to be a mess because already they are threatening to close down the Gulf of Hormuz which is the major area through which oil is transported out of The Middle East. And of course we have hit them with sanctions. So I think there’s some real danger of something blowing up this year in Iran. I don’t really think this administration wants to go to war in Iran, but I think there’s going to be a lot of almost getting there during the course of this year because the chart of Iran has been activated by this retrograde Mars and Square Neptune in The USA.
Jason Hartman: As I said, the protests, the Occupy Wall Street movement is going to consolidate and become quite cohesive and possibly be a part of forming a third political party that may displace one of the other parties eventually. I mentioned briefly earlier on in this interview that there is developing a worldwide water crisis that is coming about that we’re going to have to address. And I also feel that we’re in a significant earthquake cycle from the northwest coast of The United States, California, Mexico, I think Japan is going to get hit with more severe earthquakes and tsunamis. Alaska, Chile, Iceland and Italy, all of those areas are being hit by this Pluto Uranus Square. And there’s a solar eclipse. May 20 is squared to Neptune. I would say that this April through June area is the time of greatest earthquake and volcanic danger this year and it’s considerable. Those are the things. So I’m really concerned about my friends and everybody on the west coast, because even if you’re far enough inland to avoid this, there still is a shutdown of electricity and utilities and the economic crises that that generates as well. So this is gonna be tough from that point of view.
Last year in February I predicted a major earthquake and tsunami in Japan which of course took place in March. And the Fukushima nuclear plant is still leaking. They have not been able to really shut down those leaks and it’s poisoning the islands and it’s very, very, very tragic. I think, also, within the next decade or so, many island nations throughout the world will be under water or will become uninhabitable. Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, coastal regions throughout the world, low lying coastal regions of the oceans arising. So we are going to confront these kinds of emergencies as well as everything else. I have advised people to move inland to a place of elevation that has a good supply of potable water and is surrounded by a culture of organic farming and gardening and local entrepreneurship and strong local community participation which is why my husband and I moved here. We’re 1100 feet above sea level, we’re in land and we’re in the Finger Lake region, surrounded by glacial lakes. We’re not going to run out of water for a long time.
Jason Hartman: Yeah, good points, good points. Well, Linda, how can people get a hold of your book or get a hold of you and learn more about your work?
Linda Schurman: It is sold on Amazon.com. It is sold on Google Books. You can order it from any bookstore. You can come to my site and order it directly from my click in to my publisher’s site but preferably the easiest way is just to go to Amazon and order it. They deliver it right to you.
Jason Hartman: And the book is called What Next? A Survival Guide for the 21st Century. Linda Schurman, thank you so much for joining us today. Appreciate it.
Linda Schurman: It’s a pleasure, Jason.
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Narrator: Thank you for joining us today for The Holistic Survival Show, protecting the people, places and profits you care about in uncertain times. Be sure to listen to our Creating Wealth show which focuses on exploiting the financial and wealth creation opportunities in today’s economy. Learn more at www.JasonHartman.com or search “Jason Hartman” on iTunes. This show is produced by The Hartman Media Company, offering very general guidelines and information. Opinions of guests are their own and none of the content should be considered individual advice. If you require personalized advice, please consult an appropriate professional. Information deemed reliable, but not guaranteed. (Image: Flickr | euthman)
Transcribed by Ralph
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