Today in 1828, Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy, or Leo Tolstoy, as most have come to know the Russian writer, was born in Yasnaya Polyana, a few hundred miles south of Moscow.
While Tolstoy is best know for works such as War and Peace and Anna Karenina, it is important to note that Tolstoy’s later works on Christian Anarchist thought and non-violence (specifically, what is refered to as “peaceful non-resistance”) had a profound impact on Martin Luther King, Jr. and had a direct impact on Mahatma Ghandi.
For anyone who is interested in truly achieving peace, his work The Kingdom of God is Within You is a must read.
Tolstoy’s influences included Victor Hugo, George Fox, William Penn.
In honor of Leo Tolstoy, we present links to our own works which have been inspired by Leo Tolstoy, whom Ghandi referred to as:
The greatest apostle of non-violence that the present age has produced
On our two year anniversary here at Davidmint.com, we wish to take a brief moment to thank you, our fellow taxpayers, for tuning in and reading from time to time. We pray that you are well and that we can continue to be of service to you.
In honor of this occasion, we have two announcements:
1. We are giving away 100 PDF copies of our latest eBook, “What is Truth? On the Nature of Empire” for free over the next 7 days. Click here to download your copy from our new store.
2. We have launched a new store right here on the site. We are taking measures towards accepting Bitcoins and, should the need arise, other forms of digital currency in exchange for our silver coin offerings.
While the first announcement is essentially shameless self promotion, the second is one that we suspect will be taken by any number of merchants in the Silver and Gold bullion space in the not too distant future.
Why? While we do not advocate holding a significant amount of long term wealth in digital formats, it may become important to do so in the short term. It may also be important to be able to transact in Bitcoins, regardless of whether or not the proceeds are held in Bitcoins or converted via an exchange to a national currency.
As the events in Cyprus continue to unfold, we here at The Mint have taken the decision to accept Bitcoins as a form of payment for Silver bullion products. While we accept that the Bitcoin, as a purely digital medium of exchange, is not without its risks, the mere prospect of a week long banking holiday, like the one the Cypriot banks are currently on, occurring closer to home demands that we create a contingency plan.
Being locked out of the bank, as the residents of Cyprus appear to be, can be downright lethal for commerce. Should the unthinkable happen in your neighborhood, it will be essential to have a backup plan.
Silver bullion is the ultimate backup plan. Should the lights go out, it is the most likely to function as a medium of exchange once the inevitable chaos wanes into some sort of order. Should the lights stay on and one’s bank accounts be randomly frozen by a government official, the ability to trade in Bitcoins will be essential for any merchant to be able to operate.
Will it work? Only time will tell. We can already foresee one possible glitch: Bitcoins have the distinct advantage of being anonymous. This is both their strength and weakness when it comes to selling bullion via mail, as in order to properly ship coins, this anonymity is likely to be temporarily relinquished into our care (silver coins are not like delivered pizzas as they must be paid for up front). While we have no immediate plans, other than to subscribe our customers to The Mint, something we see as benign, if not beneficial.
Beyond having a plan B should the banking system become “Temporarily Unavailable” on an individual or collective basis, in theory, accepting Bitcoins is beneficial as they should theoretically continue to appreciate in value against the fiat currencies of the world. The reason for this, for the uninitiated, is that Bitcoin creation is set to occur on a fixed timeline and to be ultimately finite. As of this writing, Bitcoin adoption is running well ahead of the logarithm, which is causing massive deflation in terms of Bitcoin pricing.
Mind you, Bitcoins can be traded fractionally up to 8 decimal places. Should Bitcoin adoption continue to take off, the Bitcoin’s rigid logarithm will not allow for the Bitcoin’s continued use in commerce. This has been described as its fatal flaw. The Bitcoin will, in theory, take its place in the digital realm as “Good money” in the terminology of Gresham’s Law and exit circulation. In its place will appear a plethora of digital currencies which would then come into existence via their own logarithm and trade against the Bitcoin, as today’s fiat currencies do.
In this sense, Bitcoin is the current gold standard of digital currencies. As such, our planned acceptance of Bitcoins for Silver is like trading physical silver for digital gold, as Bitcoin’s trajectory will theoretically track that of gold with one notable exception: Barring any subsequent changes to the logarithm, there will be no new “discoveries” of Bitcoins to augment the stock.
It seems like a good trade, and one we are willing to engage in to a point. However, we must reiterate that wealth must be held in the real world to be of any worldly good, and trading in Bitcoins, while temporarily solving the problem of rapidly depreciating fiat currencies, will serve to further throw the earth out of balance. For man’s activities to achieve balance with the earth, the monetary premium must be attached to something in the physical realm, not an inordinate amount of credit or data stored on a servers.
Besides, credits and data on servers has a strange knack for disappearing when you most need them. Silver typically does not.
One last word to the wise, NEVER, EVER GO SHORT BITCOINS IN FIAT CURRENCIES, as doing so places one on the wrong side of a trade against a deep pocketed adversary: A fixed mathematical limit.
In the twenty first century, it has become clear to most that there is no divine right or imperative for the existence of an Empire on the earth. As such, an ever-increasing number of peoples have thrown off the yoke of Empire in favor of what has become known as a democratic model of collective governance. Yet simply changing the rules of governance has not put an end to the core ideals of Empire, and governments today that are elected democratically have largely retained the hallmarks of Imperial rule, namely the tendencies toward a central monopoly on the use of force and the right to demand tribute. How can this be?
The purpose of this volume is to gain an understanding of the true nature of Empire and, to convince the reader that Empire, and by extension large scale government, is not only unnecessary, but a great hindrance to human progress. This volume also explores why the Imperial model virtually ensures that the worst elements of humanity will rise to power, where they will ultimately impose their will on their fellow humans by violence. For the violent outcomes that Empires invariably produce are not exceptions to the rule, nor are they merely the norm.
They are literally guaranteed by design.
Once we have grasped the true nature of Empire, we will then will explore the only known antidote to Empire and the only possible means for mankind to rid itself of the lethal effects of Empire on the earth. And it is probably like anything you have imagined.
The following is an excerpt from our upcoming ebook release, “What is Truth? On the Nature of Empire” which is volume IV in our series “Why what we use as Money Matters.”
As we researched the book, we were joined unexpectedly by James Tissot by way of his astonishing artwork. His depiction of Joseph and His Brothers approaching Pharaoh adorns the cover, and his great works, such as this one entitled: “Ce que voyait Notre-Seigneur sur la Croix” or “What Our Lord Saw from the Cross” in English have moved and inspired us as we have toiled on this volume. We pray that they will move and inspire you as well.
“Ce que voyait Notre-Seigneur sur la Croix” (What Our Lord Saw from the Cross) – by James Tissot
What is Truth? On the Nature of Empire
As men and women go about their daily occupations, it is relatively common to stop and form an opinion on the benefits or detriments to society of a particular action taken by the government. While it is easy to form an opinion and then take sides of an issue, perhaps the most important question that can be asked is not, “What should the government do?” but rather, “Why is the government doing anything?”
The reason that the second question is rarely, if ever asked is that the concept of Empire, or a large scale government which is seen as the ultimately authority, has been part of the human experience for so long that it’s existence or utility are rarely, if ever, questioned. We pray that this volume has caused you to give it some thought.
The ignoble goal of all Imperial activities has been to establish and maintain primacy in the affairs of men and women throughout the entire known world. This demand for primacy and allegiance takes the form of the Empire claiming a monopoly on the use of force, which is invariably followed by demands for tribute. Ultimately, the head of Empire will make an appeal to divine right and declare him or herself a deity. As the Empire begins to fade out of existence, it tends to become more violent and intolerant, not conscious of the fact that its subjects are devoting a great deal of time and energy to escaping its grasp.
Those who remain are left to either perish at the hands of the Empire or at the hands of those who see no alternative save the use of the force of arms to overthrow the Imperial leadership, which has been necessarily populated by the members of society who are best able to suppress their conscience in blind pursuit of the Imperial imperative.
Such is the nature of Empire, and it is lethal to human progress. The existance of Empire on the earth ensures that all who inhabit it will take the side of Cain, who in the Biblical account related in Genesis chapter 4 lead his younger brother Abel to a field where he murdered him, or Abel, the innocent. Cain’s murderous act is born out of the mistaken belief that the removal of others from the earth will secure one’s place before God and man. It is an idea that is the driving force behind Imperial action, and it is death.
Fortunately, there is a better way. The better way lies neither in violently or peacefully resisting the Empire, it lies in the doctrine of non-resistance, which paradoxically is the best way to ensure one’s safety and security regardless of the state of Imperial degeneration that one finds themselves surrounded by.
However, the path of non-resistance is not without risk. Many of history’s most noted adherents are noted because they perished while clinging to this principle. It is not for the faint of heart, yet it is attainable.
The power to do this is found in the person of Jesus Christ, who replied to the Imperial lament, voiced by Pontius Pilate, an instrument of the Roman Empire, “What is truth?”
Jesus’ response, which is not recorded in the Biblical account but made clear by His subsequent actions, echoes through 2000 years of Imperial rule to guide our actions today:
In His reply, we find the power to embrace the doctrine of non-resistance, which is the only hope that mankind has to live in peace both here and now, regardless of the proximity of Imperial rule to his or her daily activities, and in eternity. For to forgive is to live in eternal peace with God himself.
Stay tuned in to The Mint for the upcoming ebook release!