Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Now Is The Time ~ Start Planning

Unless you're young or grew up on a farm ... or earned a degree in agriculture or something, they type of "farms" I'm urging African Americans to purchase are best called: "Hobby Farms" or "Truck Farms."

For middle age folks and older, the prospect of buying over 1,000 acres of land, and actually FARMING them ... well, it's a bit un-daunting to say the least. Otherwise, owning something like three, five ... ten ... up to 40 acres is what I'm talking about.

1910 was the peak era for black land ownership. For African Americans to regain that same level of land ownership, each black person must own a minimum of 1.37 acres of land for us to even get back what was lost ... or depending on how you look at it... what we gave up.

Toiling all day every day in 100 degrees on over 100 acres of Georgia red clay wasn't easy and I'm sure there were more than a few who were only too happy to sell the family farm. (Especially knowing that they weren't paid the same earnings for what they produced as white farmers were.) In fact, if you look at programs like television programs like PBS' "Homecoming," you have to be wary of the propaganda they're selling. Still, it too is a valuable story about the feelings that linger in the souls of many black Americans about "Home" ... wherever that is.

I remember stories my mother told me about life on the farm and how during The Great Depression (..yeah ... some of those stories did get old...) they never suffered like people in urban America or farm workers who were in dust bowl areas... because they had everything they needed. Fresh food, farm animals, cows for milk, plenty of fresh water that ran through their land ... even horse and buggy if the gas ran out.

Even though most financial forecasters aren't sounding the alarm bells of a new depression any time soon, there are plenty who are saying that the next ten years ... and for sometime thereafter, we may be in for "Sinking Globalization" and "The Muddle Through Decades."

I don't know about you, but at age 53, I've learned from experience, that black people don't do too well in recessions ... especially a series of recessions! I was born near the end of the Baby Boom ... and it seemed like every time I stood in line, and finally got my turn at bat, game was either over or called for rain.

I attest that in Capitalism 101, to have a top, you have to have a bottom.

I assert that the playing field is not fair and never will be fair when it comes to us ... unless we can gain far more economic and moral power than we have today.

Owning land has always been one of the quickest routes to wealth. Americans seem to love to move ... and now the bulk of who is moving .... is moving to either the left or the right coast. Both are already over crowded. [SEE: ]

THERE'S NO MORE ROOM LEFT ... and still they're moving in. More rats in the cage means lower earnings, lower quality of housing, more traffic jams. Just this morning I heard a radio story about a new computerized fast lane in Minnesota or someplace. As global funds decrease, you can bet State and local authorities are going to be squeezing us for as much as they can.

Isn't it a far more logical decision to confront our fear of change, and do something different?? The definition of insanity is what? Yes ...

"Doing the same thing over, and over again, expecting different results."

African American mental health isn't all that good right now ... and with increased stressors, there will be more crime in the hoods, and more self-medication for all the drama, and yes, more mental illness. It's time to go!


Anonymous said...

I've been reading your blog and thinking about your theory. I grew up in NYC and I love it, but there's no way I can build wealth there right now (well, I probably could, but I haven't figured out how yet!).
Sometimes I think about a bunch of like-minded black folks moving to a less populous state, out of a city and really building a community from scratch. I think it would be something to behold...
As for yourself, I hope you are seriously mapping out the steps you need to take to make it out of the urban jungle if that's what you truly want. You won't regret it!

Journeyman said...

Thank you for your comment. I'm working towards this goal as seriously as I possibly can. It means that I can no longer work in my old career paths because they will not lead to this new goal.

Eventually, I suppose we all HAVE to do what we most like doing, or else life takes a huge chunk out of our soul.

Anonymous said...

Mixed Idiom, or MI is a concept that I have been trying to teach to as many like minded people as possible. The underlying concept is that we establish "clans" which would be composed of 15-50 families. Much like the family associations (sometimes called Tongs) that the Asians participate in. These clans would provide for each others economic welfare and group development. Often AAs lament, "they come over here and bang they got a restaruant or store. It aint fair that somebody gives them the money". What we often don't realize is that the somebody financing them is actually a family association back in Asia. Not their government or our government but as many as 2-3 thousand asians each contributing all they can from their subsistence incomes. The first activity is to send their "scouts", these are young men without wives who have studied and learned enough english to come here and find menial employment. They work as slaves almost at wages that no american would consider. They sleep in the back of job #2 or 3 and save every dime. Usually one of their jobs is in a restaurant or store where food is included as part of their income. They own 2 changes of clothes. One is always drying, after being washed the night before. They don't spend a dime on recreation. To them conversation over their weekly beer is all the recreation they get. When they have enough money they send it back home to finance another brother or cousin coming over. They repeat the process. Again and again, until there are 10 or 12 of them. They then have enough money to bring over an uncle. Uncle acts as treasurer and supervisor for the young men. He makes sure that they stay out of trouble and keep working. They turn over 85-95% of their gross incomes. Uncle networks with other uncles already here and they buy a building. As many as 30 young men will sleep in an apartment in shifts. The other apartments in the building will be rented out for income. They buy another building and then another. All this has taken 1 year. They now have 2 or 3 buildings and from the 30 young men 15-20 thousand dollars a week income. By the end of the second year they have brought over another 30 worker bees and 3 aunties. The next year they start bringing over neices. These girls from back home are to be brides for the hardest workers. It is the oldest incentive program in the world. Sex.
By the end of year three there are 60 worker bees 8 uncles 12 aunties 10 neices and the first American born children are born. By this time they own 16-20 buildings where they operate 15 or more. businesses. All of the worker bees are paid more, only have to work 2 jobs, live in apartments with only 3 or 4 others. Have mastered english, are looking for business opportunities; that will be financed by the Tong. And most importantly are moving up the list to get a neice brought over to marry. The 60 of them earn 50-75 thousand dollars a week. And it keeps growing. By the end of 10 years they own 50 buildings, have a weekly income of 150K -200K, are all married, have no debts, are working only 1 job each, those who can are enrolled in schools and they are financing the next wave of Tongs back home. They started with just 2 or 3 cousins, now there are 3 or 4 hundred of them, all making more money than they dreamed of at the start. They send 1 or 2 million dollars back to china where they invest in manufacturing plants or other businesses. The family association which started with less than 10 thousand US is now worth 50 million dollars. Such is the power of collectivism, such is the power of a dream, such is the power of discipline. As long as we are addicted to consumerism and got to have that bling, addicted to envy and jealousy and can't stand to see anyone else get ahead; we will never compete. If we learn from this simple example, we can do the same or better within the decade.

What We Believe:

"Every problem is an opportunity in work clothes."
~Henry J. Kaiser