My gun vault down in Jim’s Amazing Secret Bunker of Redundant Redundancy (JASBORR) is now full. It is a large vault (a Zanotti ZA-III modular six-footer) but it isn’t big enough. For more than 30 years, I’ve been accumulating barterable tangibles: guns, full capacity magazines, precious metals, optics, and knives. Each of these represents a fairly compact and liquid asset. They all have practical uses, although the coins and ingots are more of a medium of exchange rather than something intrinsically useful in and of themselves. (Oh, I suppose the silver could be melted down, cast into bullets, and put to good use if the ranch is overrun by lycanthropes. What if silver someday mysteriously becomes nearly worthless? If cast into buckshot, if propelled by just a wrist rocket slingshot, as Mr. Spock once said, “they would make formidable projectiles” to slay garden pests.)
I rest well at night, knowing that the vast majority of my net worth is either in the form of productive land, or useful tools. The US Dollar could get devalued or wiped out by inflation, and yet that would only hit about 3% of my net worth. This is because I convert my greenbacks into tangibles at the first opportunity, and only keep modest bank balance to pay my monthly bills.
I’ll admit that I may have gone a bit overboard. Do I really need a half dozen spare Swiss Army Knives (of various models), or four spare Cold Steel Knife Voyagers? Probably not, but there they sit, new, stacked up in their factory boxes. But I don’t expect their resale value to go down anytime soon. Do I truly need a stack of HK93 magazines, or Glock 17 magazines, or M14 magazines, when I don’t even own any of those guns? Probably not, but they sure do make great barter items. And why do I have so many stainless Colt M1911 .45 semi-auto handguns? After all, I can only hold two at a time. But perhaps a day will come when my descendants can no longer attend a gun show and walk home with what ever they please, sans papier. And again, I don’t expect them to go down in value.
I suppose that I’ll soon have to buy a second vault, and bolt it down, right next to the existing one. Someday in the future, after I’ve joined the Choir Invisible, my children or grandchildren will have a quite a day, sorting though the contents of my vaults. And something tells me that my heirs won’t be disappointed, or consider it “junk” that they are dividing up.
None of the foregoing is meant to brag. Rather, I hope that you will emulate my approach at investing diversification to prepare for the tumultuous decade ahead. Think: Tangibles, Tangibles, Tangibles!