Posts by Simon Black

Simon Black is an international investor, entrepreneur, and founder of Sovereign Man. His free daily e-letter Notes from the Field is about using the experiences from his life and travels to help you achieve more freedom, make more money, keep more of it, and protect it all from bankrupt governments.

  • First post: 16/06/2009
  • Posts written: 2342

Latest Articles

It depends on the meaning of the word ‘is’…

By February 1868, President Andrew Johnson had been at odds with Congress for years.

Johnson had been Vice President for barely a month when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in 1864, and his battles with Congress started from practically Day 1.

Johnson shared Lincoln’s view that the Confederacy should be swiftly and gently reintegrated back into the Union after the Civil War; neither wanted to penalize the South.

But at the time, Congress[...] Click here to continue reading

One of the easiest places in the world to obtain residency

In late 2002, about 17 years ago at this time of the year, I was a young Army officer deployed to the Middle East.

It was just a few months before George W. Bush gave the order to invade Iraq, though all my fellow officers and I knew with 100% certainty that we would be going to war.

That turned out to be an extremely formative experience for me.

It was clear[...] Click here to continue reading

San Francisco spends almost $30 per flush for public toilets

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances, and your prosperity.

British school controls where children eat and shop after school


Imagine a man in a high visibility jacket comes into your take-out restaurant, and starts berating your customers, telling them to leave, and threatening them if they don’t.

That is what business owners[...] Click here to continue reading

Broke billionaires (and other ridiculous signs of the top)

File this one away under ‘completely ridiculous’.

You might have heard that Elon Musk was on trial last week in Los Angeles; he was being sued because he claimed (multiple times) that British spelunker Vernon Unsworth was a pedophile. (He’s not.)

It’s generally damaging to one’s reputation when a world-famous billionaire erroneously calls you one of the worst things anyone could possibly be.  So Unsworth sued for defamation.

Defamation in the United[...] Click here to continue reading

The best economic citizenship program for 2020

We just capped off a spectacular weekend in St. Lucia with members of our Total Access group to explore this country’s Citizenship-by-Investment program.

I’ve written about Citizenship-by-Investment programs before; these are completely legal programs that exist in several countries where foreigners can invest a particular sum of money in a country and become a citizen.

These programs are often called “Economic Citizenship” programs as well. And they’re typically the fastest way to get[...] Click here to continue reading

Comedian fined $35k for offensive joke

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances, and your prosperity.

Canadian Comedian fined $35,000 for joke


A Canadian comedian must pay $35,000 to a disabled man he made fun of in some of his acts.

A Quebec appeals court upheld the decision by the Quebec Human Rights Tribunal. It said Mike Ward exceeded[...] Click here to continue reading

Gold has outperformed the stock market over the last year

For more than a year, I’ve been strongly encouraging readers to consider buying gold.

In fact, almost exactly one year ago to the day, I wrote that gold was cheap relative to just about every other asset class in the world.

Since then, gold has been one of the best performing investments in the world.

Over the last 12 months, the price of gold is up 21.1%, handily outperforming everything from the[...] Click here to continue reading

How Robert De Niro ended up with three passports

Most people might be surprised to learn that Robert De Niro has more passports than he has Academy Awards.

Come to think of it… most people probably have more passports (one), than they have Academy Awards (zero).

But De Niro has two Oscars: the first for playing Vito Corleone in The Godfather Part II, and the second for his starring role in Raging Bull.

Yet he has three passports (that we know[...] Click here to continue reading

British government to decide how children can decorate their bedrooms

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances, and your prosperity.

Crackdown on homeschooling coming across Great Britain


A few weeks ago we talked about how the Labour Party in Great Britain wants to eliminate private schools.

Now, in addition to that, regional governments across Great Britain are launching an assault against homeschooling.

[...] Click here to continue reading

Why Elizabeth Warren wants you to be poor

Late last week, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos gave away nearly $100 million to more than a dozen charities across the United States.

It would take the average person more than 1,000 centuries to accumulate that much money. Yet Bezos gave it away in a single day.

And it’s not like that was the first time he’d ever given to charity. Bezos has already donated billions of dollars to other philanthropic endeavors.

You’d[...] Click here to continue reading

How Elon Musk obtained TWO additional passports (and you can too)

Elon Musk is one of the most famous entrepreneurs in the world. But if he hadn’t been able to make his way to Silicon Valley as a young man, it’s possible that you would have never heard of him.

Musk was born and raised in South Africa. And while South Africa is a really wonderful place (one of my favorites out of the 120+ countries that I’ve visited), it’s not exactly a world-dominating tech[...] Click here to continue reading

Newspaper will stop reporting any news “traumatic” to snowflakes

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances, and your prosperity.

College newspaper will no longer report “triggering” news


Northwestern is one of the finest universities in the world and is particularly renowned for its journalism school.

The Daily Northwestern student paper, staffed by these aspiring journalists, recently apologized for covering a “traumatic” event[...] Click here to continue reading

Who knew 2 cents could go so far?

About a week and a half ago I had a terrible sinus infection… I’m talking -really- bad. My sneezes were so ferocious that I half-expected the US Geological Survey to register them on the Richter Scale.

In the midst of all that misery, I became acutely interested in the health care plans of leading US Presidential contenders… and stayed up late at night when I couldn’t sleep combing through their solutions.

Most of[...] Click here to continue reading

The five scary new rules of upside-down capitalism

Roughly 23,000 years ago in modern-day Israel, a small tribe of ex-cave dwellers built a tiny village near the Sea of Galilee that may have been one of the earliest agrarian societies in human history.

Archaeologists discovered the site more than thirty years ago.

And they found tens of thousands of well-preserved seeds and agricultural tools, suggesting that the people who lived there planted a great deal of food in the fertile lands[...] Click here to continue reading

Have you claimed the most valuable asset your ancestors passed down to you?

If you were a southern Italian peasant around the turn of the 20th century, your life was pretty rough.

The feudal system had officially ended with the unification of Italy a few decades earlier. But most laborers probably didn’t notice the difference.

The vast majority of southern Italians were farm workers. But the landlords who still controlled most of the land charged high rents, paid little, and employment was unsteady and unreliable.

[...] Click here to continue reading

Retired man’s home seized over $8.41 in unpaid property taxes

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances, and your prosperity.

County government seizes home over $8.41 in unpaid tax


When an 83-year old retiree paid his property taxes late, he miscalculated the interest owed to the county government.

All told, he was $8.41 short. Yes you read that correctly, i.e. less than nine[...] Click here to continue reading

Just in case the Fed ignites the atmosphere…

In early 1940s as World War II raged in Europe and the Pacific, the most powerful person in the world was NOT Adolf Hitler. Nor Franklin Roosevelt. Nor Winston Churchill. Nor Josef Stalin.

Not even close.

The most powerful person in the world was a Nobel Prize winning physicist named Arthur Compton.

Compton had been tasked by the US government to lead a group of scientists in developing a plutonium-based nuclear weapon--[...] Click here to continue reading

They’re building a wall, but not the one you think

Bernd Lünser was by all accounts a popular, promising student.

He was studying civil engineering at the State Engineering School of Architecture in West Berlin in 1961.

Unfortunately, he lived in East Berlin. And during the summer break of that year, the Berlin Wall was completed, shutting off access from Western administered West Berlin from Soviet controlled East Berlin.

Suddenly the 22 year old Lünser found his prospects for a good education[...] Click here to continue reading

You have 49 days left to come to Puerto Rico

Over the past two decades, one of my hobbies has been chronicling my family history.

It started back in the early 2000s right around my first military deployment. I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it home, so I had a strong desire to know more about my ancestors.

I was fascinated by what I found-- not just names and dates, but the stories of their lives. And the more I[...] Click here to continue reading

UK Cancer charity: Biological females are now ‘people with a cervix’

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances, and your prosperity.

Apparently it’s not just women who can have babies...


It all started when a British cancer charity decided to drop the word “women” from their pap smear ad campaign.

It seems that suggesting “women” should get pap smears to test for cervical cancer[...] Click here to continue reading

This is the easiest way to obtain a European passport

Warren Buffett has famously quipped that his preferred holding period for an investment is “forever.” Once he zeroes in on a great business and buys a huge stake in the company, he never wants to sell. Ever.

This concept of long-term investing is simple to understand but hard to put into practice.

We humans are emotional creatures. And more often than not, wild market swings and economic crises cause us to swoon, panic,[...] Click here to continue reading

When they can take your children away… how free are you?

George Reby was driving from New Jersey to Tennessee to pick up a car he had purchased on eBay when he was stopped for speeding.

Like many Americans, George felt he had nothing to hide from the police. So when the officer asked him if he was carrying any large amounts of cash, he admitted he had $22,000 on him because he was buying a car.

George was able to show the officer[...] Click here to continue reading

Confused about your gender? You can commit crimes without punishment in Australia

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances and your prosperity.

Appeals court overturns child pornography conviction because criminal is transgender


Right up front-- to be absolutely clear, we have absolutely no issues whatsoever about the personal decisions that people make in their lives.

We couldn’t care less if someone chooses to identify as[...] Click here to continue reading

How you can save tens of thousands of dollars in taxes by moving abroad

Milton Friedman, one of the most influential economists of the 20th century, once said that “nothing is more permanent than a temporary government program.”

The same can be said about temporary taxes.

Take 1861 for example, when the first-ever federal taxes were levied on American citizens to help pay for the Civil War.

At first these taxes were levied only on residents living in America. But the people in power argued that[...] Click here to continue reading

Three things you didn’t know about the crash of 1929

October 28, 1929-- 90 years ago today-- is known as ‘Black Monday’ in financial circles.

The US stock market had peaked the previous month, on September 3, 1929, with the Dow Jones stock index reaching a record high of 381.

But throughout September and October, nervous investors began pulling their money out of the market.

And over a three day period in late October (including Black Monday), the market lost more than[...] Click here to continue reading

Hey Air Force, the 1960s called: they want their floppy disks back

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances and your prosperity.

Air Force Missile Command finally retires 1960s era Floppy Disks


I suspect our younger readers might not know what a floppy disk is, let alone have ever seen one.

Whereas today we have USB drives etc. to copy and store files, the standard[...] Click here to continue reading

WeWork: one moron ruining it for everyone else

In 2010, New York-based entrepreneur Adam Neumann had an idea: to lease office space to companies all over the world on a short-term basis.

Usually when a company leases office space, it has to sign a long-term contract; but Neumann wanted to lease space to businesses for terms as short as one month.

It wasn’t an original idea. Companies like Regus have been doing that for decades. But Neumann had two key twists:
[...] Click here to continue reading

Start thinking about silver before it becomes popular again

In 663 BC, King Ashurbanipal of the Assyrian Empire invaded Egypt and sacked the city of Waset (located in modern day Luxor on the Nile River).

Ashurbanipal vanquished the city, purportedly seizing more than 75 metric tons of silver for his personal collection.

At the time in the ancient world, the prevailing ratio between gold and silver was 1:2. In other words, 75 metric tons (= 75,000 kilograms) of silver was worth 37,500[...] Click here to continue reading

Now even Sex Robots have rights

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, your finances and your prosperity.

Singapore officially bans ‘fake’ news


Singapore is great for a lot of things-- banking, business, trade, etc. But it ranks rather poorly for civil liberties.

Case in point: a new law intended to stop fake news came into effect in Singapore this month;[...] Click here to continue reading

The fastest way to obtain a second passport

Need A Second Passport Fast?
Learn how to get a Second Passport & Citizenship
in just 6 months to 2 years


AUTHOR


LAST UPDATED





If you are in a rush and looking for a fast way to get a second passport and citizenship you’re in luck…

It’s possible to obtain an excellent passport in less than six months in exchange for money, or in around two years if[...]

Click here to continue reading

Yesterday I learned about yet another incredible tax incentive

Yesterday, I was looking at commercial properties for an Opportunity Zone investment… and one project in particular is really attractive.

The building itself is inexpensive-- only a couple of million dollars to buy it and a few more to renovate.

Frankly, for a large spacious office building in one of the best neighborhoods in the city, that’s really cheap.

And the projected yields are in the double-digits.

Lately, there have been[...] Click here to continue reading

Here’s why the gold price could really soar over the next two years

At some point between the years 1483 and 1485, a Genoese businessman named Cristoffa Corombo had the opportunity to pitch his idea to King John II of Portugal.

This period was the dawn of what historians call the ‘Age of Discovery,’ a time when European explorers sailed all over the world opening new trade routes.

They were the tech entrepreneurs of their day, famous for their bold, absurdly expensive, and extremely high-risk ideas[...] Click here to continue reading

It’s “violence” to mispronounce someone’s name

Are you ready for this week’s absurdity? You might want to grab a drink for this one... or take a moment to listen to some soothing meditation music.

Here’s our Friday roll-up of the most ridiculous stories from around the world that are threats to your liberty, finances, and possibly your blood pressure.

It’s “violence” to mispronounce someone’s name


Let me ask you a question-- how do you pronounce the name “Shea” ?

[...] Click here to continue reading

Why you shouldn’t be able to drive to your bank

What is your favorite coffee shop or restaurant? Which doctor’s office and dentist do you prefer to go to?

I bet these are all within, say, 15 minutes of your home. That makes sense--who wants to drive three hours to get coffee, or take a plane to their dentist?

But what about your bank?

If you live in the USA or Europe, chances are, the banks in your neighborhood probably aren’t that[...] Click here to continue reading

The next big investment trend is on sale right now

In July 1994, an ex-hedge fund VP left his cushy Wall Street job and started a new company called Cadabra, Inc.

He wanted to capitalize on an emerging trend that was called the “Information Superhighway” back then, what we now know today as the Internet.

Cadabra was an early ‘dot-com’ company. But as more and more people started accessing the Internet in the mid-1990s, the number of dot-com companies exploded.

Before long,[...] Click here to continue reading