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Stories From an SHTF Christmas: An Interview With Selco

Daisy Luther
December 20th, 2018
The Organic Prepper
Comments (46) Read by 4,263 people

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This article was originally published by Daisy Luther at The Organic Prepper

Have you ever thought about what an SHTF Christmas would be like after an end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it event? I’m not talking about a minor issue that just affects a few people, but a full-on disaster that changes everything.

Today, we have a first-hand look at what a post-collapse holiday is really like. I interviewed my friend Selco, of SHTF School, and his answers are really food for thought.  I have learned more about long-term survival from Selco than probably anybody else and have based a lot of my own plans on things I’ve learned from him. For most of us who write about preparedness, it’s research and theory. For Selco, it’s real life.

This interview is in his own words.

I read over the answers to his questions at least a dozen times and thought about how fortunate we are. Even our most difficult times here, in our society, would have been the height of luxury during the war in Bosnia.

But will we always be this lucky?

First, give us a little bit of background. What was going on? Please describe the circumstances in Bosnia during this time.

War in the Balkan region (Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia…) started during the 1991 and went on until 2000 (if you include war at Kosovo and NATO bombing of Serbia in 1999), but historians mainly narrow it to a period of 1991-1995 if you do not count Kosovo war and NATO bombing. In some literature, you’ll find the name “Yugoslav Wars“ which is same (all above-mentioned Balkan countries used to be states in Federation of Yugoslavia (Jugoslavija or roughly translated to English it is “country of south Slavs“).

…Yugoslavia (as a socialistic-communist country) founded after WW2 in 1945, and stop to exist in 1991 with the start of the wars. Shortly prior the war socialistic system (communistic) fell apart as a part of bigger events (fall of Soviet Union, fall of Berlin wall…) and democracy came, together with democracy, rivalry between states that wanted to stay in the Yugoslavian union and states who wanted independence raised sharply, that resulted in riots and small and isolated fights, leading to full use of Yugoslavian army (JNA) which was 4th largest military force in Europe in that time.

Wars had all features: Independence fights, aggression between states, civil war, genocide, re-alignments, or switching of allegiances as the operational situational changed, backing up from foreign forces (Such as US and NATO)… through periods of it  you could say that it was an ethnic war or even religious in parts, but in the essence it was war for territory and resources between factions who were in power, based on personal gain of wealth and influence only.

I went as a civilian and later as a soldier through the whole period of wars, I was in different regions during that period. Harder period of those wars (because of numerous reasons) happened in Bosnia, and one of the main “feature“ of that period were “sieges“ of a couple of cities that lasted from few months to a couple of years.

Some of those sieges were complete, in terms that everything normal stop to exist in city- electricity, water, police, medical services and everything else that makes normal life, every normal service. Death from sniper or shelling was an everyday thing, but also death from gangs because law stop to exist, or death from malnutrition, lack of medicines or simply lack of proper hygiene.

I found myself in one of those sieged cities. I lived like that for a year and I survived.

Every day, for almost a year, for me was a constant fight for survival, I was constantly either trying to defend myself or to look for resources, for usable water, food or simply firewood. We scavenged through the destroyed city for usable items because everything was falling apart and we have to “reinvent“ things in order to survive, like the best way to stay warm, to stay clean and safe or simply to make home medicine for diarrhea or high blood pressure.

When Christmas rolled around, it was obviously very different than any other holiday people had ever experienced. Can you tell us the usual Christmas traditions in Bosnia BEFORE this all happened?

As said, I grew up in Yugoslavia, which was socialistic and communistic country. One of the thing in that country and system was that religion was not forbidden, but it was strongly, let’s say “advised“ that religion is way down in the list of life priorities.

On the other side, it was strongly “advised“ that we put aside our differences (we had many different ethnic groups in Yugoslavia, and a couple of main religions) in order to build one “ethnicity“ – Yugoslavian. As the result of that all different religions kinda know each other very well, and people from different religions celebrated more or less or know all religions.

Christmas for most of the folks was very much connected to the New year holiday (again something that is connected to the official socialistic system) and it was just like everywhere in the world I guess, holiday of presents and gathering of family. For example, going on midnight mass was matter of being together with family and friends, and meeting each other-not so much matter of religion not too many “real“ religious people).

I was a teenager more or less, but my memories of that holiday prior the war are: peace, good food, family gathering and presents, and of course Santa.  It was huge and “mandatory“ thing that kids gonna get big presents then.

I’m sure that then, everything was very different. What were some of the changes? How did you celebrate?

Everything was different when SHTF, yes. Living was hard, comfort was gone and everything was stripped“\ down to the bare survival. Lot of small commodities that we usually do not think about (we take it for granted) was simply gone because of obvious reasons (the whole system was out) but also because simply life becomes full of hard duties, to finish simple tasks and obtain resources becomes hard, dangerous and time-consuming.

Celebrations become rare and not so happy and big (not even near) but in the same time they become more precious and needed too.

Get-togethers (family) become even more important because people lean much more on each other between group or family, simply because they needed much more support – psychological. too – than in normal times.

A lot of religious people lost their faith when they saw family members dying. On the other side lot of people found God in that desperate times – as an only hope.

Being together with family members for small “time off“ become almost like small rituals, like a ritual of finding inner strength and support in order to push more through hard times.

Yes, religion was a big part of it, but it was not only about religion, it was about finding strength in you and people close to you – family, and sharing it between each other.

Without access to storebought presents, what kinds of gifts did people give?

It could be divided in two groups:

Things that help you in the new reality:

All kind of things that helped you to solve all kind of problems that SHTF brought. For example, people who were skilled in handcrafting used to made cigar holders out of wood and bullets casing, it was very popular for smokers and the reason for that was because cigarettes were rare, and people usually smoked bad tobacco rolled in bad paper and good cigar holder (as a combination of cigar holder and pipe) was essential for smoking that stuff.

It was small thing but really important if you were a smoker in that time.

Another example was small handmade stove. It was made from thin metal, and in some cases it was portable. Point was that kind of stove needed really small amount of wood ( fuel for fire was important and hard and dangerous to get in urban settings) to make it really red hot and cook something quickly or boil water.

So cool and usable kind of inventions.

Things that connect you to normal

In this other group were all kind of things that connect you to the normal (prior SHTF) life. It was not only cool and nice to have those presents, but also it was important psychologically to taste something that actually makes you feel normal again.

For example after living for months through collapse, one simple bottle of beer could make you feel human again, and it would somehow gave you strength.

Sweets (Candy), beer, spice, or even few songs that someone play on guitar for you were precious.

What did you do for the children at Christmas to make it special?

Kids were somewhat “forgotten“ in the SHTF times. Quite simply not many people paid attention to them other then keeping them safe from dangers.

People did not have enough time to take care about their needs.

During the holidays people usually wanted to give some kind of joy for them, or to “keep the spirit“ of holiday alive for them.

In majority of cases it was very poor imitation of holidays in normal times, for example I remember that making pancakes (jam was made out of tomato juice and very expensive sugar) was considered alone like a holiday. Special food, or attempts to make some special food, for kids, were usual holiday presents for kids in that time. Today that kind of food would look ridiculous and not even edible probably, but in that time it was precious.

What did families serve for Christmas dinner in Bosnia during this time?

Traditionally for Christmas and New Year holidays in this region here, we ate huge amounts of meat, and drink wine, so people during the collapse tried to keep that tradition.

Again it was mostly unsuccessful in terms of normal, but in that time having hot stew kind of meal from MRE was considered holiday dinner, and actually it was very very tasty and a “holiday spirit“ dinner considering what we usually ate.

Wine was out of the option most of the time but hard alcohol was there.

In general, were people happy and joyous to find a chance to celebrate, or was it grim and depressing because it was so different?

General picture looked like this: we were cold, more or less hungry, dirty, tired and unsure in future, but yes we appreciate feeling of getting together for holiday and we were trying to keep “spirit alive“.

Truth is that sometimes it worked, sometimes not.

But generally yes, psychologically it was important, it had its place, it had a sense to get together, take some time to try to feel normal again, to remember that we are still humans.

Definitely those moments were not bright and happy, like in normal times but on the other hand those moments were appreciated and were much more real than in peacetime.

Do you have any holiday stories you can share from this time? (Doesn’t matter if they are happy stories or sad – I’d really like to show the reality of post-collapse holidays.)

It is big thing (I guess just like everywhere) to leave presents under the tree for Christmas and New Year here.

It is custom here to buy big bags (kids motifs of cartoons, fairy tales and similar) and fill it with favourite snacks, sweets and toys of each kid and leave that bags under the tree (we did not had custom of socks and similar, we had those bags, to literally translate the name would be “kid package“).

Of course, it was out of the question to have the bags and sweets and toys in the middle of SHTF.

My uncle in that time came into an opportunity to make a deal with local small “warlord“ or gang leader if you like.

The deal was about giving some weapon for food (the guy had a connection with outside world) and my uncle “made a condition“ on the whole deal with the term that he will give a weapon for food but the additional deal was that he also need 3 “kids packages.”

In that time and particular moment, taking into consideration with what kind of people he was making a deal it was like he was asking a serial killer, to his face, to sing a gentle lullaby, and my uncle said that those guys simply could not believe what he asked.

Everybody was looking for or offering weapon, drugs, violent contract deals or even prostitutes from those people but he was looking for “kids packages“.

But they indulge him, and my uncle said that he thought they indulged him simply out of the fun, and out of the fact that it is gonna be a very interesting urban legend that someone could obtain kids packages in that time.

The guy even wrote down the list of sweets and toys that my uncle asked from him.

I think those sweets and toys when they came were one of the most unreal items in that time and place, but they were worth the effort.

It really gives you something to think about.

What a reality check. And how fortunate we are. Our version of “things were really tight this Christmas” is laughable in comparison to what is described above. I can’t thank Selco enough for sharing his stories with us.

I’ve often recommended prepping with things like cake mix, birthday candles, extra Christmas cards, and items that support your family traditions, and after reading what Selco had to say, I believe it’s even more important. You can’t overstate the psychological aspect of being able to provide that sense of normalcy.

More information about Selco

Selco survived the Balkan war of the 90s in a city under siege, without electricity, running water, or food distribution.

In his online works, he gives an inside view of the reality of survival under the harshest conditions. He reviews what works and what doesn’t, tells you the hard lessons he learned, and shares how he prepares today.

He never stopped learning about survival and preparedness since the war. Regardless what happens, chances are you will never experience extreme situations like Selco did. But you have the chance to learn from him and how he faced death for months.

Real survival is not romantic or idealistic. It is brutal, hard and unfair. Let Selco take you into that world.

Read more of Selco’s articles here: https://www.theorganicprepper.com/category/preppers/selco/

And take advantage of a deep and profound insight into his knowledge and advice by signing up for the outstanding and unrivaled online course. More details here: https://shtfschool.com/survival-boot-camp/

The Pantry Primer

Please feel free to share any information from this article in part or in full, giving credit to the author and including a link to The Organic Prepper and the following bio.

Daisy is a coffee-swigging, gun-toting, homeschooling blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, and the pursuit of liberty on her websites, The Organic Prepper and DaisyLuther.com She is the author of 4 books and the co-founder of Preppers University, where she teaches intensive preparedness courses in a live online classroom setting. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter,.

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Author: Daisy Luther
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Date: December 20th, 2018
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46 Comments...

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  1. Maranatha says:

    A good food calculator always has items like dehydrated or canned apples so that at holiday time, you can make some sweets. It would be miserable under collapse conditions without some small perks.

    Charging up little mp3 players would likewise cost very little with a huge return.

    If you must smoke, then make one hitters as then all the tobacco is consumed with less waste. They can be made from old metal pens. Or make a corncob pipe and use some wood with easily removed pith like sumac.

    Ask yourself why Selco and his family suffered. They were in the city. Get the heck out of densely populated regions with crazy leftist popuations. These neighbors have the least supplies, least ancestral skills, least ability to mentally, physically, and spiritually cope.

    Move to a country place where you can take the profit from a homestead sale in your state, and reinvest in a safer state and location. Avoiding is better than confronting as most of the confrontation is due to Mathusian forces ie scared hungry thirsty useless morons.

  2. Menzoberranzan says:

    I’ll continue to thank God for sending His son Jesus to save us from our sins.

  3. Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

    I have spoken about my maternal side of the family, here and in other places. They were from Maine. Aroostook County. It’s the ass end of the US and that hasn’t changed in 100 years. It’s a cold, miserable place where life was hard 100 years ago and it isn’t any easier now. Excessive taxation and crap schools exacerbate local poverty.

    My aunt and mother were two years apart and were born at home in 1941 and 1943, respectively. One sibling did not survive and is buried with my grandmother and her parents in Mapelton, Maine. They were too poor to buy seperate plots. The single plot is where my grandmother’s parents, a child that didn’t survive to the age of five, and my grandmother are buried. There was no headstone until ten years after my grandmother had been buried. I started a family fund and my aunt collected money for a year until we had enough to pay for a headstone. My grandmother passed away in Commiefornia in January. The body wasn’t buried until the spring. This is normal in northern Maine because the ground is frozen until the spring thaw.

    In case I haven’t made it clear, life has never been easy in northern Maine. Poverty is normal. There are the government workers, the local potato farmer that owns land, and everyone else.

    My grandfather did poach deer, out of season. If you haven’t read the book, “The Beans of Egypt, Maine,” or seen the movie, it explains this part of the world in a gritty and realistic way. The movie is gripping. I watched it on a local PBS station years ago. Quite shocking that they actually showed it.

    Gifts were made. Gifts were practical, too. Clothes, like pajamas, socks, and slippers, hats, scarfs, and mittens. My grandmother could knit and crochet, as could my mother and aunt, so the fall was always a busy time, making things.

    Food gifts were big. We always made potato candy and gave it to neighbor’s and even the school bus driver got a big batch. Basically russet potatoes were baked and scooped out, while hot and butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and coconut were added. Once cool these little potato balls were dipped in melted chocolate and a nut or more coconut was placed on top. That’s basically the recipe. Super sweet, overly sweet, but as kids we loved them. It is one regional recipe I haven’t seen ripped off and destroyed on the Food channel. These were wrapped in tinfoil and given away. No fancy box or wrapping or cellophane.

    Even into my teens we always got oranges and mixed nuts in our stockings. It seems odd, now, to tell people that you got Brazil nuts and walnuts and hazelnuts and an orange for Christmas. But it makes perfect sense. The shipping cost to get an orange, or a Brazil nut, or a walnut to northern Maine made those items a luxury. I remember hearing stories about truckers that didn’t make it on the old icy roads, back then. Transporting goods to the back country was risky. Of course the health benefits of oranges (vitamin C) were a good addition to a winter diet of meat and root vegetables.

    Brazil nuts are amazing, full of fiber and possibly the highest amount of natural selenium.
    ht tps://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazil_nut

    Hand made tree ornaments were normal in my family, too. Anything could be used and decorated and made into an ornament that could be hung from a tree limb.

    Not sure if there will be any bulk nuts-in-the-shell at the grocery store this year. But if you see them, you know why they are there, now, and might give them a second look.

    Merry Christmas. We are blessed to live in the US.

    • Maranatha says:

      Most of the kids in Kentucky got oranges and nuts in stockings and were glad to have them. I was shocked when I actually got a little present in mine one year. Typically there were lifesavers candies too as they were inexpensive.

    • JayJay says:

      And many, myself included, at times actually forget to thank God for ‘WHERE’ we were born.

    • rellik says:

      PD,
      I grew up in southern CA.
      “It seems odd, now, to tell people that you got Brazil nuts and walnuts and hazelnuts and an orange for Christmas”
      That was quite common for my childhood. Although I liked Tangerines which mom would swap into the stocking.
      I think that was a 50’s thing.

    • Yahooie says:

      I grew up in Michigan during the 50s and although we didn’t have the stocking tradition at our house, our church did give all the kids a paper sack with all sorts of nuts, oranges, and some hard candy. This grocery sack was filled about 25%; no more so it didn’t burst. We kids loved all the nuts and fruits, more than the candy actually.

    • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

      Closest potato candy recipe I could find. But we never put shortening in the melted chocolate! And we used the scooped out insides of baked russet potatoes (not the skins, just the insides).

      ht tps://www.almanac.com/recipe/needhams-potato-candy

      I had never heard these candies called Needhams until I did a search. Weird. We just called them potato candy. They are super, super, super sweet from the powdered sugar! The good news is that coconut has lots of fiber in it!

      There are some fancy pants versions. We just rolled these into little balls and flattened them and dipped the tops into chocolate and then shredded coconut or we put a walnut on top.

    • Beaumont says:

      If you haven’t read the book, “The Beans of Egypt, Maine,” or seen the movie, it explains this part of the world in a gritty and realistic way.

      I’ll look it up.

      In spite of changing lingo and appearances, society has always been structured, in the same way, imho.

      All of these roles are probably analogous to Egypt, Rome, or Medieval Europe; civilization is universal.

  4. the blame-e says:

    These articles are just plain ridiculous, insane, nonsense.

    Do you doubt for one moment that the people who started the wars in the Balkan region (Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia . . . ), didn’t have their little baby Jesus and Christmas, while the average schmuck got nothing for Christmas but little baby Jesus’ dirty diaper?

    I mean really. The chicken shit (or rather the little baby Jesus doo-doo) falls from the top down. Always has. Always will. The people could stop this crap in a heart beat if, instead of fighting each other, they took out the Ruling Class, starting with all these unelected, rogue, billionaires.

    And this Selco moron. Give me a break. “I’m a victim. I’m a jerk. I’m a little weany boy. I ate rats to get by.” Good, God. Be man. Stand up.

    • Heartless says:

      to you blame-e, I wish a Merry Christmas. With the hope you never have to endure what people have had to in the past. I mean that. And if you do face such a fate, that you will persevere and survive with soul intact.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Have you thought about what a shtf Christmas would be like?

    In fact i have.

    Saint Nicholas of myra(original santa claus) is the patron saint of sailors, merchants,archers, repentant thieves, children, brewers,pawnbrokers, and students in various cities and countries around Europe.
    one of my favorite stories concerning “the original” is when he is said to have rescued three girls from being forced into prostitution by dropping a sack of gold coins through the window of their house each night for three nights so their father could pay a dowry for each of them.
    So that gets me to thinking.
    Lets just say if the “original”( not to be confused with the commie that always dresses in red and gives away free stuff) could see fit to drop off three bags of gold coins during the crunch then maybe i could forget about the lionel train he forgot to bring and remove the punji sticks from the fireplace.

  6. Maranatha says:

    Christmas Sing With Bing (1956)
    Little Delores Short writes a letter explains what Christmas means to an orphan girl in Pine Ridge Kentucky (among the poorest of the poor in America in Appalachia).

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTkUqjWY4vg
    Begin at 19:27.

  7. richard says:

    I can remember in the early 60s at my grandma’s a hand pump for water a woodstove for heat and cooking ; rice and tomatoes for supper and a biscuit with molasses for dessert and sometimes the sugar ants tasted just like molasses also .

  8. Maranatha says:

    In 1958, Crayola introduced a pack of 64 crayons with a sharpener and a “flesh” colored crayon. That could easily last five years if you were careful. My kid sister who was artistic got one and was as pleased with that as any other present.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Crayola_1st_No64_open.jpg

    Kids today are spoiled.

  9. You can feed a family with one jar of soup, water, spice, and enough pasta to fill the belly. It’s how you stretch a dollar. It’s also how you stretch out your supplies. Pasta, rice, beans, potatoes, corn, flour, wheat berries, etc. are fillers that commercial manufacturers use in their products. They do it for the same reason you do it. It is economical. Make and pressure can meat and vegetables. Buy canned Atlantic salmon, sardines, meat, and poultry. Use them and rotate them. Hunt and fish, and learn how to preserve food. An All American pressure canner and a book by Ball would make for a great Christmas present.

    _

  10. Kevin2 says:

    Regarding Christmas I remembered something from the book “Dispatches”, by Michael Herr. A soldier in Vietnam was asked what he wanted for Christmas and his reply was, “Tomorrow”. You know that he was obviously in some bad shit.

  11. Warchild Dammit! says:

    I just had a very depressing conversation with guy at place I am staying at while doing a gig.We as always talk a bit about prepping ect.,there is a old age home down the road,it falls apart and they do not have their meds/machines ect. seems a very painful death.I wondered if one of them asked to end their pain could I shoot them to save them from misery(assuming no help coming obviously),guess I could but feel doing that would fuck me up for life.I would wish had heroin/morphin ect. to at least send em out with a smile.

    I really get depressed at times thinking about this shit!

    • Genius says:

      Doing a gig? Are you a musician? Maybe we can have a jam on the end of the world deck? Fentanyl seems to be the opiod of choice for ending your life. That is sad to see what suffering some people have. Chin up man, you have a lot left to see of the world!

    • buttcrackofdoom says:

      you just have to help the ones you CAN, and try not to think about the ones you CAN’T help. i know it’s similar to my situation, when riding my bike around town i encounter “crazy” people all the time……there’s NOTHING i can do that would actually be help to them. but SOME of those homeless out there are actually pretty decent people, so i may give one a jacket(like i did just last night), or a sleeping bag, or a pair of shoes…..do what you can. both of you have a merry crissmuss!

  12. Dennis says:

    In the early 1900s both my parents got fruit and nuts for Christmas; I never heard them mention getting a toy. I got moderate toys. Spouse and I are spending about $50 for gifts this Christmas. I remember how Laura Ingalls Wilder described Christmas in “The Long Winter”; the youngest child got a toy, everybody got a stick of candy, Laura gave her sister Mary knitted lace, her Ma got a hair receiver, sister Carrie got a cross-stitched picture frame, and Pa got a much-needed pair of suspenders. They also had a stack of unread magazines that had come a month or so earlier which they saved to read on Christmas. Mary said waiting to read the wonderful stories would be good for them because it would teach self-denial. How many people would feel that way in our instant gratification era? They all thought it was a great Christmas.

    • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

      Amen! I downloaded the works of H G Wells on my Kindle: cost was $3.00. Jules Verne compendium was $0.49. There were other free books to download too by HG Wells.

      I wanted to read his non-fiction (New World Order, Anticipation, and The Open Conspiracy). Those were $3, or less, each. For $10 I have enough reading material to last all winter!

  13. Mainiac says:

    PD, you have never been to Aroostook County Maine. Like many you voice an opinion without being informed. Your second hand story is 60 years out of date.

    • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

      Huh? My grandfather had a cabin on Long Lake at lived on Winter Street, in Presque Isle, until he was moved to the veteran’s home in Caribou.

      As for Presque Isle, I considered moving back to Maine. The property tax rates are some of the most expensive in the entire US. It’s criminal how the socialists have destroyed Maine.

      The house my grandfather lived in, until he was sent to the Veterans Home in Caribou, sold for $60K a few years ago. The property taxes, on that place, are the same as for my 1500 SF house that is worth $300k. The schools in Presque Isle have a rating under 5 on Zillow. That’s disgusting. What people are being forced to pay, and what they get, isn’t proportional.

      Oh, and do tell me about how great life is in Lewiston. How are those Somalis?

  14. Mainiac says:

    So when was the last time you went Maine?

    • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

      Answer my question, how do explain a mil rate that is nothing less that government extortion?

      And how do you answer for the 20,000 Somalis that were imported to Lewiston and are in the process of destroying that city as completly as the Somalis have destroyed their home country.

      I love Maine. I love the people of Maine. I love the work ethic of Maine. What I hate about Maine are the socialists that have taken ideas from liberal schools and used those ideas on a generous, hard working people, as a means of exploitation.

      The present reality in Maine, and the future in many other states, is of the apparatchiks who work for the government, the poor, and the wealthy who hire the politicians to write the laws which allow them to exploit the taxpayer for private gain. Where is the middle class? Why it’s gone, of course. That is the end goal of communism. To utterly destroy the middle class. Communist doesn’t mean there are no wealthy people. It means that only party members are allowed to accumulate wealth and are allowed access to capital.

      I prefer dangerous freedom to the lie of the safety net used to enslave people under communism.

  15. Mainiac says:

    A high mill rate but low property values. And yet 300k for 1500 square foot house on how may acres? OUCH
    As for the commies it’s plain who they are and it’s just to soon to dispose of them. In the 70’s nobody knew what the unintended consequence of allowing Massholes to migrate.

    • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

      That mil rate matters. Excessive taxation matters. Exploiting the local population by lying to them matters.

      My grandfather’s old house on Winter Street in Presque Isle: Sold for $60k (a few years ago) and property taxes of $2K a year. Local schools have a very low rating on Zillow.

      My house: $300K and property taxes of $2400 a year. Plenty of choices for public school, private school, or to home school online, via certified K-12 certified affordable homeschool programs, with high speed internet that is low cost.

      You already knew that house I mentioned in Presque Isle is on a very small in-town lot. I don’t remember the lot size but I doubt the lot size is larger than 1/4 acre. Anyhow, this isn’t about lot size, this is about how government exploits the local population for personal gain.

      Maine has been a playground for rich people for a hundred years (and probably longer). And yet Mainers are like plantation coloreds, willing to put on a minstrel show when their master shows up. Master throws them peanuts and goes home to New York or Massachusetts or wherever.

      How is that minstrel show working now that Lewiston is infested with Somalis? Who is going to keep paying excessive property taxes while local schools are garbage, when locals don’t qualify for free housing or welfare but the gimmigrants from Somali, do?

      Yeah, let me know how that socialism / communism works out for you. I hope you hunt and can shoot. I grew up learning real skills. I expect I shall need those skills, in the near future. Even where I live.

    • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

      I wanted to say, I am not your enemy.

      Let me repeat, I love Maine and the people of Maine. They are hard working, no nonsense people.

      Eventually Mainers may wake up and realize they are being exploited by politicians just like coloreds are exploited in Baltimore and Detroit. Those people get rich while the people they claim to help remain mired in generational poverty.

      It took me a long time to understand why driving through Maine was like driving through a real-life Stephen King novel. Why so many gray houses? Why so many half-finished houses? Why so many yards that were trashed? Once I became a property owner I understood. Once I realized the excessive property tax burden forced on Maine residents, I understood even more.

      Why would you increase the value of your property by painting it or landscaping it if you knew the local property tax assessor was going to adjust the value of your home, upwards, which would mean an increase in property taxes? The big lie, told in Maine and in places like Detroit and Baltimore, is that the locals will benefit with better roads, better schools, and a better quality of life. As always, those are lies.

      How are those roads in Maine? Getting your money’s worth out of paying taxes to the local politicians and county tax assessor?

      • Philosopher Deplorabilis says:

        Oh, in my county we can get a three-year property tax exemption for remodeling our home! This makes sure that people improve their property and take care of it which is a win/win for the property owner and the county.

        You would think counties like Arroostoock County would understand this and offer similar incentives.

  16. Maranatha says:

    Mainers are among the most insular people I ever met, and perhaps are more insular than the people of Japan. If a family moved from Massachusets to Maine a hundred years prior, the locals still consider them outsiders. The ladies are very plain; it’s as if every pretty lady left for better options. They have a terrible brain drain as well as if every young educated person does their best to leave.

    It’s a peculiar place but I reckon if you moved away from the Portland region, for at least an hour, then you could find a homestead as the population density really drops off.

    While I was there, there even were lynx sightings and numerous moose sightings. There’s an odd charm and even thought I enjoyed being there, I could never make a home there. They are Yankees through and through.