Financial Friday 131

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 131….

Transportation

Zero!

Accommodation

The exchange rate shifted so this went back up to $13.14 per day.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

On Monday, my baseline local mobile plan was renewed: $0.36.

On Thursday, my local data plan was renewed: $9.98.

Summary

Week 131
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging13.1413.1413.1413.1413.1413.1413.1491.98
Food0003.42009.9813.4
Other4.734.734.736.094.734.7314.7144.45
Total17.8717.8717.8722.6517.8717.8737.83149.83

So another fantastic week. See you all in the next one….

Financial Friday 130

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 130….

Transportation

Zero!

Accommodation

The exchange rate shifted a bit so this week it’s a bit less than last: $13.05 per night.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

Summary

Week 130
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging13.0513.0513.0513.0513.0513.0513.0591.35
Food008.030006.8514.88
Other4.734.734.734.734.734.734.7333.11
Total17.7817.7825.8117.7817.7817.7824.63139.34

Nice, it’s back under $150 for the week. See you all for the next one….

Financial Friday 129

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 129….

Transportation

Zero!

Accommodation

I discovered a miscommunication between my hosts and myself. I’m actually paying considerably more than I previously thought: $13.13 per day. However, considering most of my food bill is included in that, I’m not complaining. It’s still a great deal.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

On Friday, I bought another computer game: Crusaider Kings III. It’s a pre-purchase including the first 3 expansions: $85.08. Pricey, I know….

Summary

Week 129
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging13.1313.1313.1313.1313.1313.1313.1391.91
Food5.05008.7600013.81
Other89.814.734.734.734.734.734.73118.19
Total107.9917.8617.8626.6217.8617.8617.86223.91

So most of the extra cost here was from the game. It’s still decent though. See you all next week….

Financial Friday 128

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 128….

Transportation

Zero.

Accommodation

The exchange rate changed my daily cost in USD: $9.85. It’s still a bargain though.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

Summary

Week 128
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging9.859.859.859.859.859.859.8568.95
Food8.71004.6400013.35
Other4.734.734.734.734.734.734.7333.11
Total23.2914.5814.5819.2214.5814.5814.58115.41

So…another super cheap week! მიყვარს საქართველო (I love Georgia)!

Financial Friday 127

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 127….

Transportation

Zero! Winning!

Accommodation

The AirBnB plus some food is $9.80 per day.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

On Saturday, my local mobile base plan was refreshed: $0.39.

On Tuesday, my mobile data plan was renewed: $9.93.

Summary

Week 127
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging9.89.89.89.89.89.89.868.6
Food004.7400004.74
Other4.735.124.734.7314.664.734.7343.43
Total14.5314.9219.2714.5324.4614.5314.53116.77

And for June….

Jun 20
CategoryWeek 123Week 124Week 125Week 126Week 127Total
Travel00055.56055.56
Lodging32.2448.3668.668.649266.8
Food14.7738.5116.2213.924.7488.16
Other18.9233.1133.1140.333.97159.41
Total65.93119.98117.93178.3887.71569.93

This is easily 1/3 of what I would pay in the West. Why Westerners with mobile jobs insist on staying in expensive places is beyond me. See you all next week….

Financial Friday 126

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 126….

Transportation

On Wednesday, I took a day trip to ვარძია (Vardzia), and a few places on the way: $55.56. That’s the cost of hiring a private driver for half a day, driving over 250km, and waiting on us to look around. That’s also me paying the whole fare; if anyone else that was willing to pay (with money) came along, it would be split with them. Considering what we got, I’d call that a pretty good deal.

Accommodation

I’m still with my hosts in ბორჯომი (Borjomi): $9.80 per day. This includes 2-3 meals per day as well as informal Georgian lessons. It’s amazing!

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

On Wednesday, we went to the Vardzia historical site: $7.19. Adult tickets are normally $4.90, but now (due to fewer tourists) it’s half price. I paid for 3 adults and a child. Considering my companions brought food with us, I thought it only fair to compensate them. Also, they’re Georgians, and could really use some subsidies.

Summary

Week 126
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel0000055.56055.56
Lodging9.89.89.89.89.89.89.868.6
Food07.140001.145.6413.92
Other4.734.734.734.734.7311.924.7340.3
Total14.5321.6714.5314.5314.5378.4220.17178.38

So this week ended up not being super cheap due to the trip. Sometimes you have to be a tourist. See you all next week….

Financial Friday 125

Location: Borjomi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 125….

Transportation

On Friday, I traveled from თბილისი (Tbilisi) to ბორჯომი (Borjomi). Trains weren’t running at the time so I managed to hitch a ride. The person who chartered the van was nice enough to pay for transportation! I love Georgians.

On Tuesday, my hosts took me to a local monastery for sightseeing and a picnic. They paid for transportation!

Accommodation

Rent is $9.80 per day, and it includes a couple meals per day, as well as informal Georgian lessons! I’ve been supplementing the food they give me, but I’m sure if I asked, they’d feed me all I need. I just don’t want to be a dick, and ask more of hosts that are already so generous.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

Summary

Week 125
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging9.89.89.89.89.89.89.868.6
Food05.62006.2404.3616.22
Other4.734.734.734.734.734.734.7333.11
Total14.5320.1514.5314.5320.7714.5318.89117.93

This is going to sound strange, but it’s kind of hard to spend money out here. The locals are so generous! See you all next week….

Financial Friday 124

Location: Tbilisi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 124….

Transportation

Zero. Winning!

Accommodation

I managed to get Thursday for free! Staying in the same place for 3 months has its advantages.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

Summary

Week 124
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00000000
Lodging8.068.068.068.068.068.06048.36
Food08.544.9211.2111.4802.3638.51
Other4.734.734.734.734.734.734.7333.11
Total12.7921.3317.712424.2712.797.09119.98

So even with restaurants and bars reopening, I still didn’t spend much. I love Georgia! See you all next week….

Financial Friday 123

Location: Tbilisi [Republic of Georgia]

Week 123….

Transportation

On Saturday, I walked to a market and took the metro back: $0.17.

Accommodation

The AirBnB rate is $8.06 per day.

Other

Travel insurance: $3.15 per day.

VPN: $0.26 per day.

Amazon Prime: $0.33 per day.

This blog: $0.31 per day.

Skype: $0.08 per day.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $0.41 per day.

Passport: $0.03 per day.

Password manager: $0.16 per day.

On Sunday, I topped up my mobile data: $6.77.

Summary

Week 123
CategoryFriSatSunMonTueWedThuTotal
Travel00.17000000.17
Lodging8.068.068.068.068.068.068.0656.42
Food7.577.37.604.909.8737.24
Other4.734.7311.54.734.734.734.7339.88
Total20.3620.2627.1612.7917.6912.7922.66133.71

Nice! And for May….

May 20
CategoryWeek 119Week 120Week 121Week 122Week 123Total
Travel01.21000.171.38
Lodging58.3156.9656.4256.4224.18252.29
Food38.6439.434.7517.5422.47152.8
Other62.2433.1133.1133.4520.96182.87
Total159.19130.68124.28107.4167.78589.34

Even better! Lock-downs suck, but at least they save a lot of money.

Riots are counterproductive

I’m sure many of you (like me) have watched in horror as the last week has played out in the US. The social media shit storm has been insane. It’s impossible for me to compress my thoughts on the aforementioned social channels so let’s get right into this….

The background

Minorities in the US have been treated unfairly for centuries. Law enforcement officials focus their efforts on poor people which tend to mostly consist of said minorities. It’s sad, but true that it’s far easier to whittle down your list of suspects by focusing on something simple like skin tone.

More recently, there’s this virus going around that has prompted many governments to implement various lock-downs. This adds to the frustration. After all, curfews in and of themselves violate human rights. From a philosophical perspective, access to some limited areas is fine; but limiting people to their homes is basically imprisonment.

Completely shutting down businesses by fiat is also unacceptable. There are plenty of businesses that are capable of implementing disease spreading prevention measures. Allowing them to do this, and at least make some money is what should have happened. It would have been rough, but it would have helped a little with the unemployment situation.

So with all that for a backdrop, someone died in police custody. This was basically the match that lit the kindling that was everywhere. In many US cities, there are riots. There are also many examples of peaceful protests. And in some rare cases, peaceful protestors have stopped rioters from looting. If you’re one of these people, I salute you as a true hero.

The consequences

So what does violence achieve? I can think off three categories to think through: hurting people, destroying public property, destroying private property.

The only time hurting another human is acceptable is when one is stopping a true criminal (as in someone that commits an actual crime; laws are irrelevant in this instance) from hurting someone. In other words, the person is protecting themselves or others. When in this situation, someone does use force; they are only justified in using enough force to stop the crime. If the crime has been halted, there should be no more use of force. This is known as The Non-aggression Principle. Governments and police violate it constantly, but that’s not an excuse to violate it as well. So hurting people while rioting is clearly immoral, and should not be condoned.

I’ve also seen a lot of looting, and destruction of private property. In many cases, said property belongs to a minority. You know, one of those people that you’re supposedly rioting for. Congratulations, you’ve just become the oppressor. If you’re vandalizing a business, you’ve also just hurt the chances of said business from surviving and hiring you. This is purely destructive, and you’re indirectly hurting yourself.

In the case of public property, one could make the argument that you as a rioter own the property you’re destroying. If that’s true, one could argue it’s justified. However, what’s going to happen as a result of this? The government will repair/replace what you destroyed. They’re going to get the money for that from either taxes or, worse, printing money (which robs everyone through inflation). So again, you’re hurting yourself.

And what have you accomplished? The government’s going to be less inclined to make structural changes to the system, and will, instead, focus on stopping the violence with violence of their own. This is what governments are good at. They have one tool: force. And they have a whole lot more of it that you do.

This also will make you the bad guy in the eyes of anyone that’s skeptical of racism’s existence. Instead of asking why there are so many people protesting, they’ll only think of how terrible it is that cities are being destroyed by rioters.

I get being hurt and angry. As a Voluntarist, I’ve been frustrated and angry with governments for decades. However, we won’t get to the world we want to see by implementing tactics that directly contradict what we wish actualize. This has been understood by many of the greats: Mahatma Gandhi, and Martin Luther King being among them.

Solutions

So what can be done? I would say the most powerful thing would be to educate yourself, and help others to learn as well. Good things to look into would be philosophy; particularly in the realm of human rights, and The Non-Aggression Principle. History is great as well; particularly the civil rights movements in India and the US. The study of economics can show you how the government is creating inequality and wealth disparity; particularly Austrian Economics, the history of money, and the precious metals movement, and even cryptocurrency (we are all Satoshi).

There are also some groups you could look into. The Free State Project has convinced thousands of people to move to New Hampshire who are attempting to change the system. The Seasteading Institute (and the seasteading movement in general) is developing the technology to free us governments, unleash a renaissance in governance, restore the environment, and advance the human race in general.

I know that’s not very satisfying, but one needs a solid grasp of philosophy to properly assign blame, and act ethically. Only then can we be the change we wish to see in the world.

Edit: I can’t believe I forgot to mention Dale Brown’s Threat Management Center. It’s a private security group based out of Detroit, Michigan, USA. They use psychology and philosophy to prevent crime, and do the least harm.

The police in every jurisdiction I’m familiar with are broken. The system has deep philosophical flaws. Here’s an example of a company that’s built a far superior product than the old, government infrastructure. And the best part about it is that it’s voluntary. The more educated people exist, the more positive examples we’ll see, and the faster real, philosophically solid change will occur.