Gary North's REALITY CHECK
question at kbot.com
Issue 543 April 18, 2006
I have posted my book, "The Sinai Strategy:
Economics and the Ten Commandments," for free
If you are tired of hearing that "Jesus was a
socialist revolutionary" or "Moses gave us
archaic laws that were only applicable in an
ancient rural community," I offer answers.
The Ten Commandments, when obeyed, produce a free
market economy. I offer evidence.
Right-click on the link. When the pop-up box
appears, left-click "Save Target As..." Then
type in Ten Commandments and click "Save."
YOUR MAIL IS BEING CENSORED
First, I'll explain how and why.
Second, I'll give you a test to see if I'm correct.
Third, I'll show you a way to reduce the degree of
censorship. But it cannot be eliminated completely.
When it comes to censoring mail, the government is a
piker. The biggest censors in history are ISP's: Internet
Service Provider companies.
The censoring process is going on 24x7. It is
conducted by algorithms. ISP's use complex programs to
filter spam. These programs look for key words and other
patterns. Then they block the delivery of this mail. It's
all automatic. Unless you take specific steps to unblock
your mail, it will be blocked. Hardly anyone will take
these steps. (I will show you how later in this report.)
I use automatic autoresponder programs to handle
responses to some letters. An unlimited number of
autoresponders come with most Web hosting services, which
can be as cheap as $3 a month. The autoresponder letter is
a great marketing tool if you run ads, especially
classified ads. I have written a free course on this. You
can get it here:
I also use a sequential autoresponder program to
deliver my free courses and newsletters. They are hosted
on this site: www.kbot.com.
Recently, I was informed by a reader that his Alaskan
ISP has blocked all messages sent by kbot.com. He referred
to "the nasty things they say about you."
I use kbot.com only for autoresponders. Yet this
man's ISP automatically blocks everything coming from
This man has turned control over what he reads to an
impersonal and poorly designed algorithm program. He knows
this. He knows that a digital program is screening his
mail, thereby controlling what he reads. Yet his continues
to pay good money to these people.
What about you? Do you pay money to an ISP that
screens your mail? Probably you do.
TEST THIS FOR YOURSELF
I have always played by netiquette rules. That's why
I use double opt-in for my courses. This means that when
you sign up for one of my courses, such as my course on the
theory of gold and how to invest in gold, my automated
system sends you an instant-reply letter.
This letter tells you that you are not subscribed yet.
To complete the subscription process, you must click a link
at the end of the letter. So, you must opt in twice:
first, by sending an e-mail to sign up; second, by clicking
a link. See for yourself how this works. Send an e-mail
to receive my course. Click here:
If you don't receive the initial opt-in letter within
30 seconds, then your mail is probably being censored
(called "filtered" by your ISP). You may have to sign up
with a free service like Verizon or Yahoo or Gmail. One
big advantage of Gmail is that you can also sign up with
Google's calendar/reminder/organizer service.
I always include a CANCEL link in every lesson. No
one is forced to subscribe who gets bored with any of my
Even if you receive my initial letter, your ISP may
start blocking mail anywhere in the subscription process.
The procedure is called BLACKLISTING. Certain mailing
lists get blacklisted. All mail sent by them is blocked by
local ISP's. Subscribers have their subscriptions
cancelled without their permission or even a warning.
In the 1950's, the term "blacklisting" was used to
describe Hollywood's refusal to hire certain script writers
who were suspected of being Communists. There were a
couple of dozen of them who became celebrities in
retrospect, after the policy ended. But blacklisting is
still alive and well. You're a target. So am I.
HOW BAD IS IT, REALLY?
It's bad. Really.
Agora is the publisher of "Gary North's Reality
Check." It sends out millions of pieces of mail every day
because it publishes numerous e-letters. Every letter is
subscription-based. Agora does not use spam techniques.
Nevertheless, the company employs a full-time person to
deal with ISP's whose screening programs block their
Over and over, the same large ISP's re-impose these
blocks. They must be contacted again. They unblock the
mailings. Then it happens again.
This is the #1 reason why we lose our subscribers --
not cancellations and not their decision to change in
ISP's, with the consequent change in mailing addresses.
Blacklisting isn't killing us, but it is hurting us.
This is a price we users pay for our "free" e-mail.
E-mail isn't free. It commands a price. One price is
Most people really don't care. I know this, because
they keep sending money to their ISP's, who not only screen
their mail, but even go on TV with ads bragging that they
screen their clients' mail.
But if you care, and you want to keep receiving
certain newsletters, there is a procedure called WHITE
LISTING that overcomes blacklisting by ISP's.
If you want to be sure to receive any newsletter, go
to this page. If offers a procedure you can use to reduce
the likelihood that a specific letter will get
automatically blacklisted by your ISP. Go here:
ALLOCATING BY EITHER PRICE OR TIME
Life is a trade-off between time and money. You pay
one or the other.
We stand in line at the Post Office. The Post Office
doesn't offer an option line: a $10 per person fast-action
line. If it did, and if it gave the employee running the
line $1 out of every $10 collected, and if postal workers
eligible to serve in those line were screened by forfeiting
their retirement benefits, we would see highly efficient
employees working those lines.
Or would we? Would we actually pay $10 per
transaction? People who value their time highly would, but
how often do such people go to the Post Office? That's
what they hire people in the mail room to do.
E-mail is free. That is, e-mail does not require a
stamp or paper. But it requires time. We spend hours
reading our e-mail. So, because we do not filter by price,
we filter by time.
When the value of our forfeited time gets too high, we
use the services of ISP's that use programs to screen our
We submit to censorship because we place a high value
on our time.
We do it all day long, all our lives. I'm not just
talking about e-mail. I'm talking about everything.
THE DIVISION OF INTELLECTUAL LABOR
No one is omniscient. The amount of information we
don't have dwarfs the amount of information we do have.
And much of the information we have is incorrect.
There is an old saying: "It's not what you don't know
that kills you. It's what you know that isn't true."
The free market is the greatest social organization
ever developed -- not invented -- for overcoming our
ignorance. The free market allows people with better
information to make it available to those who can put this
information to use in their lives.
This information is never free. To access it, you
must pay. You can pay in time or you can pay in money, but
you must pay. There are no free goods in this life.
Somebody has to pay. (This, by the way, is what Easter is
supposed to be about.)
We are all dependent on other people for information.
We place ourselves at the mercy of profit-seeking suppliers
of information. We cannot re-think everything all day
long. We must assume that most of our information is good
enough to get us through life. Yet there is always newer,
better information. As Solomon said 3,000 years ago, of
the making of books there is no end.
And that was before the World Wide Web.
CENSORSHIP FOR FUN AND PROFIT
There are censors out these who do not want you to be
able to gain access to certain kinds of information. The
censors say that this information is "privileged." This is
another way of saying that you must pay certain groups
money in order to obtain it.
The groups selling this privileged information need
the censors to block access to this information or better
information that is sold by others. The groups seek a
The priesthoods of the ancient world set up such
barriers. The term "priestcraft" has long been associated
with "secret knowledge."
This is not the same as trade secrets, which is a
legal way to protect inside information. This is a system
of controlled access to information that uses the civil
government to keep rivals out of the marketplace.
Trade associations go to the politicians and ask them
to pass laws that impose penalties on those who sell
certain services or information. This is the #1 function
of trade associations. This is what most lobbying is
about: either imposing legal barriers to entry or getting
out from under barriers to entry that were passed at the
request of, and campaign donations by, rival trade
All such barriers are designed to raise the cost of
obtaining better information. In modern democratic theory,
the State is seen as the primary agency for opening up the
marketplace of ideas. This may be the most successful lie
in modern politics. The actual operation of democracy is
to keep ideas away from the voters -- all in the name of
the People. The gatekeepers of ideas say they are acting
on behalf of the People. The People usually agree with
them, having been educated in the tax-funded schools, which
are controlled by the gatekeepers.
The Web is the most important development in man's
history to circumvent the idea-gatekeepers. Yet even the
Web has its censors, as I have argued. Every system has
gatekeepers. The Internet's main gatekeepers are anti-spam