Preparedness Notes for Friday – September 21, 2018

On this day in 1780, during the American Revolution, American General Benedict Arnold met with British Major John Andre to discuss handing over West Point to the British in return for the promise of a large sum of money and a high position in the British army. The plot was foiled and Arnold, a former American hero, became synonymous with the word “traitor”. It’s too bad the current crop of politicians are not held accountable for their treasonous acts.

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Happy Paratus Day!

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SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today features another entry for Round 78 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
  4. A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
  7. RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site.

Third Prize:

  1. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  2. A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
  3. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  4. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  5. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances, and
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).

Round 78 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



Making A Living As A Reseller- Part 4, by BIF

For those of you wanting to make the move towards self-sufficiency in a career, or for those who are just looking for extra income, I am writing about buying and selling as a source of income. I think with a little practice, anyone can learn to make money by reselling things. This is the final part of the article series where I have gone over my experience with various resources and techniques for reselling. Let’s continue with a few more steps in my sample.

Another Tag Sale

It’s another tag sale. This time it was a bank foreclosure on a McMansion from one of the gated communities in town. The bank took pretty much everything that wasn’t nailed down and moved it to a warehouse for sale. Although I was unfamiliar with them, I bought three unused camera backpacks for $12. These bags had a high-end suspension (shoulder strap) system on them and had not been used. This tipped me off that I should look closer. After I got home, a quick check on the Internet showed that they all retailed for over $100 each. I resold them a week later on eBay for $145. My total proceeds at this point is $451.

More Stuff For Your Own Needs

While you are looking for stuff to resell, don’t forget about your own needs. At the same tag sale, they had the high-end dishwasher out of the kitchen at the McMansion. The kitchen was undergoing renovation, and they had moved the dishwasher to the garage, making it eligible for the bank to repossess it. My dishwasher was making some funny noises and seemed to be on its last legs. For $10, I ended up with a newish Bosch dishwasher that was originally over $800. Again, don’t be afraid to take a chance and remember to shop for yourself, too. After switching it out, the “new” dishwasher worked fine. If it hadn’t, then I would only have been out $10.

Continue reading



Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. And it bears mention that most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of JWR. (SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor.) Today’s focus is on investing in stainless Walther PPK pistols and other scarce discontinued guns. (See the Tangibles Investing section.)

Precious Metals:

We’ll start of with this from Peter Hug: Gold Treading Water Ahead Of Next Week’s Fed Meeting

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Some useful long term charts: Gold Mining Stocks vs. Gold & Silver

 

Stocks:

S&P at an an all-time high: Dow rallies more than 250 points to first record close since January

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Gary Christenson: Market Tops Take Time

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Ex-GM Boss: Tesla ‘Headed For The Graveyard’

 

Continue reading





Preparedness Notes for Thursday – September 20, 2018

On this day in 1519, Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan set sail from Spain in an effort to find a western sea route to the rich Spice Islands of Indonesia. In command of five ships and 270 men, Magellan sailed to West Africa and then to Brazil, where he searched the South American coast for a strait that would take him to the Pacific. He searched the Río de la Plata, a large estuary south of Brazil, for a way through but failed to find one. He then continued south along the coast of Patagonia. On October 21, he finally discovered the strait he had been seeking. The Strait of Magellan, as it became known, is located near the tip of South America, separating Tierra del Fuego and the continental mainland.

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SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today features another entry for Round 78 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
  4. A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
  7. RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site.

Third Prize:

  1. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  2. A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
  3. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  4. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  5. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances, and
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).

Round 78 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



Making A Living As A Reseller- Part 3, by BIF

For those of you wanting to make the move towards self-sufficiency in a career, or for those who are just looking for extra income, I am writing about buying and selling as a source of income. I think with a little practice, anyone can learn to make money by reselling things. So far, I’ve provided some background information and given some insight into pawn shops as well as ways to acquire inventory with no money or very little.

Stihl Concrete Saw and Wheeled Carriage (continued)

Let’s continue to look at an example of one ways I made money reselling through a purchase of a Stihl concrete saw and wheeled carriage, purchased for $30 from a pawn shop. I originally thought I’d disassemble it and part it out on eBay, but then I reconsidered.

Parting Something Out

In the case of the concrete saw, research showed that I could have gotten something around $400 for the parts, but I decided to try Craig’s list again to sell it as is. My thinking was that it would probably take two months to part it out, and the draw back to that on something as well used as this saw was that maybe a quarter of the folks would claim that the part was worn more than they thought it was or was not described accurately and want their money back. Besides the frustration of dealing with a complaint and the potential for hits to your reputation score, you have to mess with returns and relisting the part. I think parting something out is still a valid way to enhance your profits, but it needs to be something you are familiar with and can accurately describe.

Continue reading



The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods:

SurvivalBlog presents another edition of The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods— a collection of news bits and pieces that are relevant to the modern survivalist and prepper from “HJL”.

The High Cost of Socialism

Reader H.L. sent in this article showing that under the guidance of Maduro’s socialism, over 40% of Venezuelan business have closed. Maduro imposed a mandatory wage increase of nearly 60 fold, making it almost impossible for these businesses to survive. Adding insult to injury, Maduro has also imposed price controls so that the business cannot increase their prices to accomodate the wage increases or account for runaway inflation. This is minimum wage on steroids.

Mosquito-Borne Illness

Eastern equine encephalitis is rearing its ugly head again. A Michigan resident has been infected with this deadly mosquito-borne disease. the CDC reports that nearly a third of those who are infected with the diseas end up dying. it is primarily tranmitted by mosquitos near swamps and wetlands, though it has been found in other places over the years. This is the first case in Michigan since 2016. While named after horses who are vulnerable, the disease is actually most often carried by birds. Human infections are pretty rare wiith only about 7 cases reported every year. Thankts to G.P. for the article.

Continue reading





Preparedness Notes for Wednesday – September 19, 2018

On September 19th, 1778, the Continental Congress passed the first budget of the United States. While the budget may have passed, the states responded poorly to the call for taxes to fund the government, and the government resorted to printing paper money to cover debts. In effect, the first budget was a failure, due in large part to the states not responding to the demands of Congress and the depreciation of fiat paper money. Are we talking about 1778 or 2018 here?

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SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

This has been another entry for Round 78 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
  4. A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
  7. RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site.

Third Prize:

  1. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  2. A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
  3. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  4. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  5. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances, and
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).

Round 78 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



Making A Living As A Reseller- Part 2, by BIF

For those of you wanting to make the move towards self-sufficiency in a career, or for those who are just looking for extra income, I am writing about buying and selling as a source of income. I think with a little practice, anyone can learn to make money by reselling things. So far, I’ve provided some background on reselling from a theory perspective and information on my experience reselling, too.

Now let’s get started with details. Let’s compare your efforts buying and selling to that traditional institution, the pawn shop.

The Pawn Shop

Over the years, I have spent a fair amount of time in pawn shops looking for bargains. I have made friends with some of the owners, and they shared with me insight into the business. Most pawn shops I am familiar with tend to try to buy for about 25% or less of what they will price the item at for resale. (This results in a 400% or higher profit target.) This is true for the more “durable” goods, such as firearms, cameras, bicycles, tools, et cetera.

I was at a pawn shop recently when they bought a like-new Remington 870 shotgun from someone who walked in the door. They gave him $45 for it. A few weeks later, it was in their case for $325. Since that was more than the cost of a new one at Walmart, it stayed in the case a long time.

Continue reading



Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. And it bears mention that most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of JWR. (SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor.) Today’s focus is on rare precious metals. (See the Precious Metals section.)

Precious Metals (Rare Precious Metals):

World’s Five Most Expensive Precious Metals

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The Most “Precious” Precious Metals in the World

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One company that sells very rare metals in semi-coin form (disk ingots) is Rare World Metals Mint, in Ohio. Note that the minting costs are high, so it is not cost effective to invest in base metals, in this form. Also note that the level of trust in these metals in a post-collapse barter situation is quite dubious. For barter, I recommend that you buy silver in its most recognizable forms. (Namely, pre-1965 U.S. silver coins and U.S. Mint Silver Eagles. )

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For those with an interest, Kitco sells Baird & Co. Rhodium coins.

 

Cryptos:

Circle Survey Finds Twice As Many Men Invest in Cryptocurrencies As Women

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Kidnapped South African Tycoon Released for 50 Bitcoins Ransom: Report. (JWR’s Comment: Hopefully, when paying the ransom, they thought ahead and slightly over-payed. (Such as: 50.00014359 BTC.) A distinctive number will be easier for detectives to track through the blockchain with any hope of identifying the recipient.

 

Continue reading



JWR’s Recommendations of the Week:

Here are JWR’s Recommendations of the Week for various media and tools of interest to SurvivalBlog readers. This week the focus is on Ammunition Storage. (See the Gear section.)

Books:

Fall and Winter Gardening: 25 Organic Vegetables to Plant and Grow for Late Season Food

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Recommended by reader A.D.: The Complete Yacht Security Handbook: For skippers and crew

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Recommended by reader “Captain Nemo”: Bardin & Marsee Waterproof Bible – KJV

 

Movies & Television:

1984. This is the 1986 remake of the classic George Orwell story, starring John Hurt. It is “…set in a world where absolute conformity in action, word and thought including loyalty to Big Brother is demanded.” Warning: Has full frontal nudity. Available on DVD, or for free streaming for those with Amazon Prime.

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Beirut.  The filmmakers did a good job of making contemporary Morocco stand in for Beirut, Lebanon, three decades ago. Available on DVD, or for free streaming for those with Amazon Prime.

Continue reading



The Editors’ Quote of the Day:

“If we refuse to forgive, we have stepped into dangerous waters. First, refusing to forgive is to put ourselves in the place of God, as though vengeance were our prerogative, not his. Second, unforgiveness says God’s wrath is insufficient. For the unbeliever, we are saying that an eternity in hell is not enough; they need our slap in the face or cold shoulder to “even the scales” of justice. For the believer, we are saying that Christ’s humiliation and death are not enough. In other words, we shake our fists at God and say, “Your standards may have been satisfied, but my standard is higher!” Finally, refusing to forgive is the highest form of arrogance. Here we stand forgiven. And as we bask in the forgiveness of a perfectly holy and righteous God, we turn to our brother and say, “My sins are forgivable, but yours are not.” In other words, we act as though the sins of others are too significant to forgive while simultaneously believing that ours are not significant enough to matter.” – Reverend Voddie T. Baucham Jr., Joseph and the Gospel of Many Colors: Reading an Old Story in a New Way

 



Preparedness Notes for Tuesday – September 18, 2018

The 18th of September is Chilean Independence Day. On this day, in 1810, Chile declared independence from Spain.

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Bill Ruger, Jr. passed away.

JWR’s Comment: Unlike his father, Bill Jr. did not try to appease the Democrats in Congress. It was under Bill Jr.’s leadership of the company that Ruger again began selling 20 and 30 round magazines to the general public. He was a good man, who will be missed.

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SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

This has been another entry for Round 78 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
  4. A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
  7. RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site.

Third Prize:

  1. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  2. A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
  3. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  4. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  5. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances, and
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).

Round 78 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



Making a Living as a Reseller- Part 1, by BIF

JWR is a proponent, with good reason, of living at your retreat and living your preps. He has also pointed out from time to time that it can be a challenge to obtain a job in the American Redoubt. They are available, but sometimes a job require special skills or a willingness to take a step down in your salary or career path. One thing he suggests is finding a way to make a living that is compatible with your lifestyle and available at your retreat location, whether it is in the American Redoubt or not.

Buying and Selling As a Source of Income

For those of you wanting to make the move towards self-sufficiency in a career, or for those who are just looking for extra income, let’s talk about buying and selling as a source of income. I think with a little practice, anyone can learn to make money by reselling things. Buying and reselling goes back to prehistoric times before money existed.

Stone Axes Versus Steel Axes

Years ago, I read a doctoral dissertation on the trade in stone ax making materials in pre-historic Australia. The best material for ax heads was available only in a few locations. The interaction of indigenous peoples across Australia to obtain materials, distribute the materials across the continent, trade, and manufacture the ax heads was incredible. That trade and the related social norms and structures, which had evolved over thousands of years, was destroyed (inadvertently?) by missionaries who disrupted the traditional way of life by giving steel axes away to anyone who did some work for them. However, that is a different story.

Continue reading