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: 2354

Latest Articles

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

Gold’s long-term gains have even outperformed Warren Buffett…

Warren Buffett, despite his extraordinary investment success, has a rather famous and long-standing love/hate relationship with precious metals.

Maybe it started with his dad-- Congressman Howard Buffett of Nebraska-- who, as a staunch advocate for the gold standard, argued to his colleagues on Capitol Hill that “paper money systems have always wound up with collapse and economic chaos.”




Warren himself acquired a record-setting 128 million ounces of silver back in[...] Click here to continue reading

You can now be fined $250,000 in New York City for saying this phrase

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 and finances.

New York City starts banning words


You can now be fined $250,000 in New York City for using the term “Illegal alien” in a negative way according to new guidance from the City’s Commission on Human Rights.

This applies to landlords, employers, and in public accommodations.
[...] Click here to continue reading

Four rules for storing physical gold overseas

In early May in the year 878 AD, Alfred the Great of the Kingdom of Wessex fought a decisive battle against a massive Viking army at a place called Ethandun in southwest England.

Alfred won the battle, defeated the Vikings, recaptured London, and united England under his rule; he’s generally considered to be the first King of England.

One of his first orders of business was to mint silver coins so that his[...] Click here to continue reading

1,015,736,491,184 reasons to have a Plan B

Precisely one year ago today, the US federal government opened Fiscal Year 2019 with a total debt level of $21.6 trillion:

Specifically, the US federal debt on October 1st last year was $21,606,948,183,180.23

Today is the start of the government’s 2020 Fiscal Year. And the total debt is now $22,622,684,674,364.43

That means they accumulated more than $1 TRILLION in new debt over the course of the 2019 Fiscal Year.

Think about[...] Click here to continue reading

The only fix is taking matters into your own hands

On Friday evening, the government here in Puerto Rico made an announcement to local retirees that many of them would have their pensions cut.

Poof. Just like that.

The pension cut is part of a debt restructuring plan to help Puerto Rico emerge from bankruptcy, which they declared in May 2017.

Bankruptcy is complicated, so I’ll explain a bit here.

When individuals, corporations, and even local government take on so much[...] Click here to continue reading

Indian airline passenger caught smuggling gold in his man boobs

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 and finances.

And for our Jewish readers, l'shanah tovah tikatev v'taihatem.

NBC news wants you to confess your climate sins


Bless me media, for I have sinned.

NBC news is soliciting comments from readers on how they could do more to prevent climate change.

“Even those[...] Click here to continue reading

We Not So Crazy after all…

I’ve never really been prone to schadenfreude-- a feeling satisfaction from someone else’s misfortune.

But I am a big believer in the Karmic justice. If you’re a dirty scumbag who constantly lies, cheats, and steals, sooner or later the universe is going to catch up with you. And I love seeing justice served.

That’s why I couldn’t help but feel delighted when I saw that Adam Neumann, founder of the so-called ‘We Company’,[...] Click here to continue reading

This law allows hospitals to kidnap you for profit

An 89 year old man named Robert Allen was feeling depressed after Christmas.

He went to the emergency room, and told the doctor that he had thoughts of hurting himself. Using his powers under the Baker Act, the doctor sent Robert to a mental health facility called North Tampa Behavioral.

Florida’s Baker Act allows doctors, police, or judges to involuntarily commit patients to psychiatric hospitals for up to 72 hours if they show[...] Click here to continue reading

How Anti-Fragile are you?

I arrived back home to Puerto Rico late last night after traveling back from our Total Access event in Las Vegas.

It was probably around 11:15 pm when I climbed into bed. And, within minutes, just as the sound of the waves outside was carrying me off to sleep, the whole house started violently shaking.

It turned out to be a magnitude 6.0 earthquake, about 20 miles off the west coast of the[...] Click here to continue reading

What I learned from having my mind manipulated this weekend

There are few times in life when you have the opportunity to witness a master at work… someone who is truly the best in the world at what they do.

Whether it’s the world’s greatest chef, a champion athlete, a master pianist, or even the guy who holds the world record for being able to recite the first 70,000 digits of Pi, it’s always exciting to see the best at work.

Apollo Robbins[...] Click here to continue reading

Swedish man fined $2,000 for someone else’s “hate speech”

Happy Friday everyone. I’m en route to Las Vegas today where we begin a wonderful weekend gathering with our Total Access members.

But I wanted to send you this quick roll-up of the most outrageous (and comical) stories we’re following which affect your liberty and finances.

Let the absurdity begin!
Swedish man fined $2,000 for someone else’s “hate speech”
There’s a Swedish Facebook group known as “Stand up for Sweden”. The group is[...] Click here to continue reading

The Bolsheviks even want to tax your toaster oven…

In a concept paper called “Treat Wealth Like Wages”, the ranking member of the US Senate Finance Committee laid out a plan late last week to radically overhaul the tax code in a way never before seen.

Just as you’d expect from the title, his central idea is to tax wealth; if you own just about anything, this Senator wants you to start paying an annual tithe to the federal government.

It’s sort[...] Click here to continue reading

The most profitable business in the world

More than 5,000 years ago on a hilltop located in modern-day Georgia (the country, not the state), a group of people from the prehistoric Kura-Araxes civilization gathered their primitive tools and began to dig.

It took years. But they eventually burrowed 20 meters deep into the earth and constructed a network of elaborate tunnels.

Thousands of years later, archaeologists and geologists figured out why: the Kura-Araxes were digging for gold.

And that[...] Click here to continue reading

Eating human flesh is the latest idea to stop climate change

Get ready for your Friday absurdity! Here are this week’s stories:

Professor advocates for cannibalism to fight climate change


If you’re concerned about the human impact on Earth’s climate, you could plant a tree, install solar panels, ride a bike, or eat your dead relatives.

Don’t let that sack of meat decompose. Put it to good use, save a cow, and sequester that carbon into your own body.

At a summit in Sweden[...] Click here to continue reading

The price of gold just hit a record high

A few hours ago, the European Central Bank announced a bonanza stimulus package: interest rate cuts, money printing, quantitative easing, the whole nine yards.

Europe’s economic growth has ground to a halt. The German economy actually shrank last quarter, according to official statistics.

So the European Central Bank is throwing everything including the kitchen sink at this problem. Their stimulus package is like a monetary defibrillator trying to shock Europe’s economies back to[...] Click here to continue reading

The Bolsheviks hate Opportunity Zones. But they’re working.

Lately I’ve been looking at a number of office buildings in San Juan-- I own two businesses that are based here in Puerto Rico, and it’s about time the team moved to a larger space.

I was really impressed with what I saw-- there are a number of compelling new commercial real estate projects in Puerto Rico right now… and almost all of them are due to the Opportunity Zone legislation.

We’ve talked[...] Click here to continue reading

Here’s every reason to avoid buying a gold ETF

Buckle up, this one’s going to be entertaining… because I should have called this note “Why you should always read the fine print.”

This morning I read through the prospectus and annual reports of the most popular Gold ETFs in the world.

First, some background:

ETF stands for ‘exchange-traded fund’. It’s sort of like a mutual fund that’s listed on the stock exchange, meaning investors can buy/sell shares of an ETF just[...] Click here to continue reading

It’s now “incendiary” to say there are two genders

Happy Friday everyone. Let’s bring on the weekly absurdity!

School cop handcuffs and screams at autistic 8-year-old


An eight year old autistic boy in Southlake, Texas became agitated in his guidance counselor’s office.

At one point the child became fidgety and took out a jump rope (that had been provided to him by the school). Amazingly enough, the counselor felt threatened by this and asked the school cop to come into the office.

[...] Click here to continue reading

Here’s a really unique way to own gold

Last week we dove into a series about different ways to own gold. And I explained in that first article why it’s a great idea to own physical bullion-- gold you can hold in your hand.

With physical gold, there’s no middleman standing between you and your wealth. And when properly stored, it’s very difficult for some frivolous creditor or out-of-control government agency to steal it.

When it comes to physical gold, I[...] Click here to continue reading

Think about this if you own Hong Kong dollars

On January 20, 1841, after delivering a series of military defeats to Imperial China in the First Opium War, British forces landed in Hong Kong and took control of the island.

Hong Kong was hugely important for the British economy because it ensured access to the Chinese market. And they went to war multiple times to keep control of the island.

In 1898 the two empires signed a lasting peace treaty whereby Britain[...] Click here to continue reading

Feminist thought leader claims milking cows is the same as rape

Welcome to our Friday roll up, where we highlight the most interesting, absurd, and concerning stories we are following this week.

Local tax collector ruins children’s entrepreneurship event


Every summer, a Utah non-profit agency called the Libertas Institute holds an entrepreneurship event for children.

It’s a wonderful idea-- children as young as 5 gather together in a marketplace to buy and sell products and services that they’ve created to one another.

And parents[...] Click here to continue reading

Here’s how you can invest like Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson

In 1978, a scruffy-looking Frenchman named Patrick Hernandez signed his first-ever recording contract.

He had spent the better part of the previous decade touring ballrooms in France, backing b-class singers without any real success to show for himself.

But in late 1978, he released his very first single, “Born to Be Alive.”

The song was an instant hit. It hit the number 1 spot in France, and within a few months, sold[...] Click here to continue reading

How to become a billionaire in five easy steps

Every morning here in Puerto Rico, I wake up around 6am as the sun rises over the ocean in front of my house. And I pretty much head straight to the gym.

Once there, one of my favorite medieval torture devices is a fairly new exercise bike called a Peloton.

In case you haven’t used one before, a Peloton is like any other stationary exercise bike. You pedal a lot, and it sucks.
[...] Click here to continue reading