Advanced Class

Heads Up

Right now, BTP is wide open. Once the Tyranids come out, we will be very busy. I recommend getting any project set up the sooner the better.

I will be ordering an obscene amount of Tyranids on Monday January 11. They will be in my hands just about Friday January 15. Tyranid projects should be done in early February if they are booked ahead of time.


I played a game of Warhammer Fantasy with Josephus today. Low-key at 1100 points. His Bretonnians vs my Dark Elves. I got tabled. Bretonnian knights are just brutal. I couldn't believe it. They just ran over the Black Guard like tissue paper.

Units of Bretonnian Knights with two characters in there are just head-stompingly good. They get a rank bonus at just three wide and all the knights along the edges get to attack.

He tabled me. Not a single survivor after Turn 4.

In other news. I tried something new against Renn as you can see in the batrep vids I'm putting out. A Dark Elf Master (Hero) on a dark steed. She's got a 1+ save from: heavy armor, horse, enchanted shield and sea dragon cloak. Then the Pendant of Khaeleth which gives an inverse ward save (roll equal to or UNDER the Strength of the attack-- six always fails). With some good tools she can really take care of small problems like skaven weapon teamms.

Against S3 she has 2+ from armor and 3- from pendant: 12 to 1 against.
Against S4 she has 2+ from armor and 4- from pendant: 15 to 1 against (ie on average it takes fifteen wounding hits from a S4 source to inflict a single wound)
Against S5 she has a 3+ from armor and a 5- from pendant: 18 to 1 against
Against S6 she has a 4+ from armor and a 5- from pendant: 12 to 1 against

These odds are even better against shooting attacks since the Sea Dragon Cloak brings her save to a 0+

See how that works? It takes a lot of damage and it's almost not even worth it to waste high strength shots. And this is against wounding hits. On average it takes 48 archers to do just a single wound.

What I'd like to try is a the Armor of Eternal Servitude on top of all that on a Lord: that would double all those odds. So a S5 wound (nevermind that it has to hit and wound) would be 36 to 1 against actually doing a wound. Virtual invulnerability.

On foot might not be a bad option because then she would have 360 degree vision.

Crouched at the Starting Line

Blue Table Painting is underbooked for January. We are ready to go on any project, any size, and ready to go right away!

We have a lot of specials running right now. Some of these note time limits, don't worry about that, I'm running them through January at least. Most of these are permanent features, that is they're being run until further notice.

If it were me ordering an army, I'd recommend the Turbo army (if you want to pick) or a Basic Training army. There's always the option of ordering a la carte.

I've also got several armies in the studio just ready to get painted up:
Imperial Guard (including six Valkyries and six Vendetta upgrade kits from Forge World)
Chaos Space Marines
Khador (tons of Khador)
Space Marines

I also have two armies on the block:
Heru Sky Raiders (temporarily reduced to $450)
Oceanic Tau

Put a Lion in your Heart

Message to person considering marriage:

Quit screwing around and just do it!

It's time to "man up" and make it happen.

Don't be stupid, but for heaven's sake, quit hemming and hawing. It's never going to be perfect. You have to just work hard and make it as perfect as you can!!!

Last Few Days

That's some good Willow-happiness. I love my baby.

So, what's on Shawn's mind?

Christmas was just a laze-about fest. My Angel Wife composed everything masterfully as usual, making sure stockings were stuffed and reindeer food was out in the front lawn. We bought a Wii Fit for Christmas and that was about all we did for the following three days. That was our major family gift that we saved up for.

The End.

OK, there's more. Here are some of the details that make life so complex...

In our ward there's a whole lot of exchange of sweets, plates of cookies and the like, so the kitchen has about a dozen plates of various goodies. My wife makes jumbo pretzel sticks with frosting and sprinkles. My favorite one was white cookies with m&ms and lots of butter.

On Saturday I got cracking again down at the studio. There are a ton of bills/obligations to clear up before the end of the month so that's like a slab of lead on my brain. In the afternoon Renn finally showed up and we had our inevitable showdown of Skaven vs Dark Elves. 2200 points. I'd say it was the best game of Warhammer ever, but there might be a better one that I just don't remember. I took plenty of video for that. Should have something up on Monday.

Sunday was a delight as usual. I put a moratorium on all media in the morning. We played boardgames and cooked breakfast together. Well, me and the boys at first. I made french toast and scrambled eggs with ham.

Ron Paul Fix

Working Saturday

Hello there. I'm down at the studio for the afternoon. Just waiting to get new orders set up. Nothing else to do.

Ho hum.

Oceanic Tau- SOLD!

We recently acquired and refurbished a Tau army. See more pictures here.

The army is over 2200 pts. Army list to follow. This list is accurate to the best of my knowledge. Naturally, you can change-up the armament.

It is on the block for $xxxx. I can take Paypal or CC by phone. I would prefer a check or MO, sent in an expedited fashion (USPS Priority with delivery confirmation in a stiff envelope) and I would give a $25 discount for this. Email me at to check availability and make payment arrangements.

  • We can expand the army later at our normal rates.
  • There are thirty magnetized weapons for the Battlesuits. Pretty sure they are a good spread of fusion blasters, plasma rifles, and missile pods.
  • The Hammerhead has alternates to be a Skyray.
  • The Devilfish and Hammerhead have both gun drones and Smart Missile Systems optional.

2250 Pts - Tau Empire Roster

HQ: Commander Shas'o (5#, 265 pts)
1 Commander Shas'o @ 265 pts (Crisis Bodyguard; Gun Drone; Gun Drone; Missile Pod; Plasma Rifle; Drone Controller)
2 Crisis Bodyguard (Fusion Blaster; Missile Pod; Targeting Array)
1 Gun Drone (Twin Linked Pulse Carbines)
1 Gun Drone (Twin Linked Pulse Carbines)

HQ: Commander Shas'o (1#, 127 pts)
1 Commander Shas'o @ 127 pts (Missile Pod; Plasma Rifle; Shield Generator)

Elite: Crisis Battlesuit (3#, 201 pts)
3 Crisis Battlesuit @ 201 pts (Missile Pod; Plasma Rifle; Targeting Array)

Elite: Crisis Battlesuit (3#, 201 pts)
3 Crisis Battlesuit @ 201 pts (Missile Pod; Plasma Rifle; Targeting Array)

Elite: Stealthsuits (6#, 184 pts)
6 Stealthsuits @ 184 pts (Burst Cannon x4; Fusion Blaster x2)

Troops: Fire Warrior (12#, 145 pts)
11 Fire Warrior @ 145 pts (Add Shas'ui; Pulse Carbine x11)
1 Shas'ui (Markerlight; Bonding Knife; Pulse Rifle)

Troops: Fire Warrior (12#, 145 pts)
11 Fire Warrior @ 145 pts (Add Shas'ui; Pulse Rifle x11)
1 Shas'ui (Markerlight; Bonding Knife; Pulse Rifle)

Troops: Fire Warrior (12#, 145 pts)
11 Fire Warrior @ 145 pts (Add Shas'ui; Pulse Rifle x11)
1 Shas'ui (Markerlight; Bonding Knife; Pulse Rifle)

Troops: Fire Warrior (12#, 145 pts)
11 Fire Warrior @ 145 pts (Add Shas'ui; Pulse Rifle x11)
1 Shas'ui (Markerlight; Bonding Knife; Pulse Rifle)

Fast Attack: Piranha Light Skimmer (5#, 210 pts)
3 Piranha Light Skimmer @ 210 pts (Fusion Blaster x3; Gun Drones x6; Disruption Pod x3)
2 Gun Drones (Twin Linked Pulse Carbines)

Fast Attack: Gun Drone Squadron (8#, 96 pts)
8 Gun Drone Squadron @ 96 pts (Twin Linked Pulse Carbines x8)

Heavy Support: Broadside Battlesuit (3#, 240 pts)
3 Broadside Battlesuit @ 240 pts (Twin linked Railgun; Smart Missile System; Targeting Array)

Heavy Support: Hammerhead Gunship (1#, 165 pts)
1 Hammerhead Gunship @ 165 pts (Railgun; Smart Missile System; Targeting Array; Disruption Pod; Landing Gear)

Total Roster Cost: 2269

Created with Army Builder - Try it for free at


Got this email from a friend of mine:

Hi Shawn,

First off, Merry Christmas to you, your family, the assemblers and artists at the studio.

On December 5th, you posted a letter from a client from Denmark. He mentions the high tax rate but then goes on to say that they have free education, free health care, etc.

I was reading a motorcycle magazine in a waiting room and saw an article about some Danish motorcycle makers. One particular line caught my eye.

A Harley Davidson Iron 883 sells in the US for $7899. It sells for the equivalent of $28,000 in Denmark due to high taxes.

That is nearly a direct quote as I wrote it down.

"High Taxes"? "Free Education and Health Care"?

When you want to buy a simple motorcycle and and up paying 4 times the real cost in additional taxes to pay for it, High taxes is hardly a fitting term. It also puts the "free" in education and health care into focus. If you wanted to buy a used mini van for $5000 for your family, in Denmark it would cost $20,000.

I also wanted to tell you about one of my Christmas presents. The Freedom Outlaw's Handbook: 179 Things to Do 'Til the Revolution

You need to get and read this book.


I own me. I own my output. I have an unalienable right to defend myself, by whatever means necessary, against predators and looters.

And I am damned tired of my servants in government acting otherwise.

Constitution Party

Rematch- Orcs vs Tzeentch Daemons

As most of you have already seen, the Batrep of Orcs (Mike D.) and Tzeench Daemons (me) is up on Youtube now.

After that game, Mike wanted a rematch as soon as possible which happened about ten days later. He brought a different army list and a new mental attitude. I wish I could have recorded that game. The final score was 1811 (Tzeentch Daemons) to 1865 (Orcs). So while it was technically a draw, Mike did a LOT better than anyone so far.

Gone were the blocks of goblins and fanatics.

He brought three huge units of Orc Boyz, thirty strong for at least two of them, two Chariots, a unit of Boar Boyz and lots of Dispel Scrolls (six).

In the magic department he went with a L4 Shaman and a L2 Goblin Shaman. Each carried the max dispel scrolls for a total of six scrolls. He shut down my magic phase for the most part the first few turns of the game with those-- at the very least keeping me from casting Bolt of Change (2d6 S1d6+4 hits) and blowing things up. So, that was the first good move.

He lined up the three giant blocks of Orc Boyz straight across from me. There was a fourth block of twenty Black Orcs. By including Black Orc heroes in his blocks of boyz he kept them from bickering for the most part. He ran straight up the middle, using his other units to deal with lesser threats, and tore my giant blocks of daemons a ragged hole.

Well, that was the plan at least. I took the Icon of Eternal Despair (-2 LD to enemies within 12") and that really messed up his plans. I also happened on a dirty trick: as the enemy army closes, move that banner within 12" and land the Lord of Change behind the lines. Terror checks will drive the enemies right into the waiting jaws of the Horrors. Crunch YUM!

Mike would have done better to pair up the chariots with the main blocks of boyz for extra hitting power. Animosity and that cursed banner broke up the line.

Mike also ran a banner that gives an extra d6" charge. That would have carried the day in one case if not for a failed Fear check at a critical moment.

Another thing we found out is that a Snotling Pump wagon, though it will take hits in a forest, is really great at getting rid of lurking skirmishers. Since it can go any direction it is ideal for barreling over skirmishers hiding in a forest.

All in all, I was facing a much more powerful army: giant blocks of Boyz backed up with Orky magic and hard-hitting heroes.

Merry Christmas

Hey all! Thanks so much for your support this last year. My family and I, and the artists and their families, all appreciate it. Your kind words are much appreciated.

So, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!

--Shawn Gately

Trade-in Rates for Winter 2010

Here are the trade-in rates for early Winter 2010 (December 2009, January to March 2010). I'm offering service credit in trade for models.

Below is a list with details. Generally it's 40% for Service Credit and 20% for cash.

Read this completely as I have recently improved several aspects of this program. Notably: I am now trading in army books. Also, you do not need to figure out the retail prices of your trade-in items.
NEW: we are also accepting as trade armies that BTP painted. The trade value will be much higher since it will account for the value of assembly/painting.
We will also pay cash. After the models arrive we'll paypal you the agreed amount. The rate is generally $0.20 on the dollar (twenty percent of retail).
You can usually get a much better deal going to the secondary market (local shop, ebay) on your own. However, the advantage of trading in with us is that you are likely to be able to unload disparate items without a lot of hassle (e.g. finding various buyers, setting up payment, lots of minor questions).
If you want to trade in, we need a list of what you have. You do NOT need to calculate the retail value, but it helps. Please tell me the condition (e.g. new in box, new on sprue, assembled, primed). The rates below are a multiplier. You would get $40 credit for $100 worth of retail items. Just take the retail total and multiply it by the number. You do not need to figure this out; you can just send in your list of stuff to .
I just know there's someone who goes out to their garage, surveys the mass of unpainted models, sighs then turns out the light. This program will hopefully allow someone with the "white primer horde" to finally show up with a painted army. As an added bonus, your models will get a good home where they will be painted and loved.
We don’t need painted figures. Exception: if they only have a little bit done with them; not too thick, not too many layers. Primed models are OK, again not too thick. NEW: If you send painted models and they are un-useable because the paint/primer is on too thick, the trade value reverts to 0.10 (it's actually almost zero). If this is the case I will inform you and you'll have the option to get your models back.
You can also get a credit of at least $10 to help with your shipping costs. NEW: I will add this automatically as part of the quote.
If you want to trade-in figures, but don't have a project ready, that's OK, I will confirm your total and then you will have it on tap for when you want to use it.
This trade-in is recorded as a payment on your project. It is non-refundable except at our discretion (eg you can’t refuse the project and then get your trade-in amount refunded as cash). Trade-in can be applied to cost of models, assembly or painting as you wish. This means you can also just get models sent to you (this is limited to models that are commonly available, eg not Forge World).
Generally, we only need in-print models that are currently in production. . These rates and conditions may change so it is recommended to check in every once in a while. I am likely to update the numbers about once a month. The plan right now is to update every first of the month. Fairness is the guiding principle.

Here are rates for credit:
. Forge World 0.70
. Army books $10 credit (must be current edition, no OOP)
. Assault on Black Reach Models:
Complete set of orks $9 credit
Complete set of space marines $9 credit
Space Marine Dreadnought $5 credit
Small rulebook $4 credit
Template sprue (complete) $2 credit
. 40K 0.40
. Warhammer Fantasy 0.40
. Hordes 0.30
. War Machine 0.30
. Battlefleet Gothic 0.20
. Lord of the Rings 0.15

Please note that some armies might net more or less. Send me the list and I'll tell you what's up.


Remember those Valkyries I have at the studio? The ones I've been trying to find a home for (along with a Guard army)?

I ordered six Vendetta conversion kits for them. Those are in now.

Each one has a sensor array, a side-array of lascannons and the two twin-linked wing lascannons. Of course, everything can be magnetized so that they convert back into Valkyries.

You can order a la carte if you want or just leave all the details up to us (that's called a Turbo Army):

Imperial Gaurd 1500 pts for $1350
Imperial Guard 2000 pts for $1600

The other thing that's possible is to make all the guardsmen into vets made out of Space Marine Scouts. We've done this before with great results.

Working Late

Hey all. I'm at the studio right now. I'll be here until 10pm Mountain time. If you need anything.

I'm processing the Orcs vs Tzeentch Daemons battle report.

Making up for a six hour break/date with my wonderful wife.



This is now my number one favorite movie by a long shot. I plan on seeing it at least two more times in the theatre.

It's great sci-fi. The aliens speak in an alien language (subtitled), there's zero-g in space, and unbreathable atmosphere for the humans (they have to wear oxygen mask things). The CGI is utterly convincing.

The story is completely moving, engaging, and if you don't sympathize with the heroes and hate the villains, then you have a rock for a heart. But it's not contrived or forced. It all makes sense.

There are some political environmental type statements in there. And I usually don't like to be browbeat about it. But I found it to be subtle enough that it didn't get in the way of a great story.

Be sure to take a leak just before, though, because it's 2:40 mins.

And bring a cushion because otherwise your butt is going to have a crease in it from sitting on the edge of your seat.

Holiday Hours

Pic: Korsarro Khan on snowmobile!

Tuesday December 22: Open regular hours
Wednesday December 23: Open regular hours
Thursday December 24 (Christmas Eve): Open until 2pm
Friday December 25: Closed
Saturday December 26: Open regular hours

I am very preoccupied with getting projects booked for January. I'm ready to go with any project, any size, any time.

Glazed Doughnut


I have a few articles I need to write, but I haven't had the inspiration. I completely slacked out today, just eating holiday leftovers (sliced ham, potatoes, jell-o, mac/cheese, pecan pie), though we did make it to church on time with the whole family today. Every time it gets a little easier.

My mom is in town for the week (not over Christmas, though). She's had her usual run of insights on how the household could be managed better. I am older now and able to take it at face value. Your parents really do get smarter as time goes on. She's really good with the baby and that has been a great help, especially since poor Willow has been under the weather.

For my part, I am recharged. Thank goodness for Sunday. Otherwise I would work myself to death. Church was nothing short of inspiring. We've got a well-practiced choir and they put on quite a Christmas program. I was full of my usual cheer, glad-handing and back-slapping.

I need to be a better father. I need to spend more time with my kids. Not just be present, but actually interact with them more, and more meaningfully. Not to say that I think I'm doing a bad job, or don't interact, just that I could be doing better.

When I come home from work, if I'm late and arrive around bedtime, I tend to charge in and get the kids all revved up. They don't need that. I need to get home on time, earlier, more consistently. That way by the time they are ready for bed, I'm all settled down as well. I'm a pretty high octane parent and my kids have definitely picked up my energy.

Tyranid Rumour Roundup

Check here for a great summary of Tyranid rumblings.

Now is a great time to set up your Tyranid army with BTP. Remember, you can't lose. If you change your mind about what you want later, that's all right, we don't mind tweaking the list. Reserve your spot in the January line-up.

Square Pegs

It's important to appreciate people for who they are, and not nag them for their faults.

Accentuate the positive. Eliminate the negative.

Reflecting Pool

Last night and this morning there was a ton of projects to get out in time for Christmas. It was the most monumental ship-out in the history of the company. But we're past that.

BTP is woefully underbooked for January. This is not due to lack of projects necessarily. It's because the studio is pumping like an eight-piston engine. It's outstanding. So we're standing by to get it done.

The quality of work has never been better. In the heart of every artist is a desire to please the client, to make something that will be loved. The crew is dedicated, without ego, and with a good will.

In other news, my mom is in town for the week. That's a blast from the past. She hasn't been out for four years. We've gone to Oregon almost every year, but not vice versa. The whole family headed up north to Salt Lake. We dropped mom off at the genealogical library. The family then headed to the zoo. Ah, the zoo in winter. And what could make that better? Trying to take a family photo in front of the zebras. The fun of ice cold weather combined with the fun of trying to get all the kids to look in the same direction.

I was a complete bear the entire trip. I don't travel well. The farther away from home I get, the more antsy I become. It's a great bit of consternation to poor Tamie, who hopes to travel in our old age. My idea of a good time is to order a pizza. Oh, sure, I love short range trips, perhaps to a neighboring city, but there's no place like home. You might call me "indoorsy".

The cavemen didn't come down out of the mountains and build all these houses so I could go camping. I respect their memory by eating in front of the TV.

Willow travels well, and will watch the trees slide by on the window for hours. She has started making this really cute baby dinosaur noise and will smile broadly when I call back to her in the same tone. Tamie bought me this lumberjack type jacket and Willow just loves to ride inside of it, facing me, but with head turned so just her eyes are peeping out above the flannel. Today I noticed that she has two upper front teeth budding. No wonder she's been tearing through her food so rapidly. She's voracious. She downed half a spinach omelet and a fist-sized pod of hash-browns left over from breakfast while we were on the road.

Anyway, the whole trip was a fiasco. Downtown Salt Lake was crowded to the gills. Even after finding a parking spot (the lots were full) we couldn't find a restaurant without at least an hour wait, this with four young kids in tow, all hungry, needing to take a whiz. There was this gal selling candy canes for "donations" which I thought was a pretty sweet racket; all nice and legal, cash only. I like that about a zillion times more than panhandling which seems so dubious and parasitic.

At temple square two sister missionaries (mongolian?) happened by and I said (rather loudly) "you guys are RADIANT!" but from the curious looks on their faces I think they thought I had shouted an insult. Temple Square was an absolute paradise. I highly recommend, especially during Christmas-time, but go on a week day when it's not so crowded.

We ended up driving ten miles south, packed like sardines in the car, to Draper and eating at Chuck-a-rama all you can eat buffet. Comfort food as far as the eye could see. Yum. Though I think the bus-guy misunderstood me when he asked if there was something he could get us and I responded "yes, a vomit spoon and a bucket." I meant that the food was so good I could go for another round.

At last we reached home and I was able to have a glass of milk and put on my pajamas.

At this moment it's 3am and I'm up, feeling rested. My 10-year-old daughter is up with me watching Fraggle Rock.

Upcoming Bio-Weapons

I nicked this list of rumored bio-weapons off of BOLS. I'm looking forward to the Tyranids. We're going to be very busy! Tyranids are a strength of our studio. Tyranids are my second-favorite army (first is Eldar).

Back in 1997 I started playing 40K. I ran an RPG and every week two of my players would take off to play a game at Fitz's house. There were no game shops at that time. I bought some Eldar Aspect Warriors from a friend for $40. My first painting attempts were pathetic beyond belief. After building an Eldar force I turned to Tyranids. I didn't know the first thing about Assembly. I tried to glue them together with hardware store epoxy glue (which has to dry overnight).


Venom Cannon
R:36 S:6 AP:4 Assault 1 Blast
-1 modifier on the vehicle damage chart

Heavy Venom Cannon
R:48 S:9 AP:4 Assault 1 Blast
-1 modifier on the vehicle damage chart

Barbed Strangler
R:24 S:4 AP:6 Assault 1 Large Blast

Stranglethorn Cannon
R:36 S:6 AP:4 Assault 1 Large Blast

R:18 S:4 AP:5 Assault X
(X= bearer's number of attacks), twin-linked

R:18 S:4 AP:5 Assault 1

Sting Blaster
R:12 S:5 AP- Assault 1

Spike Blaster
R:18 S:5 AP:5 Assault 4

Texorin Bug
3 fire modes, may be fired additionally to all other weapons
-Template S:* AP- Assault 1, wounds on 2+ vs. non-vehicles
-Template S:5 AP:5 Assault 1
-Template S:3 AP:6 Assault 1, Rending

Death Blaster
R:18 S:5 AP:5 explosive


Toxin Sacs
ALL units may buy these. Grants Poison attacks (4+)

Adrenal Gland
ALL units may buy these. Grants Furious Charge

Spore Launcher
Big bugs only. Grants Frag granades

To-wound rolls of 6 cause the loss of all wounds instead of one

Flesh Hooks
R:6 S:5 AP- Assault 2

Toxic Blood
When the model loses a wound in assault the model causing the wound must pass an I check or lose a wound with no armor save allowed. Vehicles suffer a glancing hit on a 4+

Toxic Miasma
Enemy models in assault range pass a T check or lose one wound with normal armor saves allowed

All enemy models in assault are reduced to I:1

Chitin Upgrades
From 6+ Armor save to 2+, with several variants

A model suffering a wound tot he weapon must pass an Ld test or is killed outright. If the bearer has a pair of Boneswords the Ld test is made on 3D6.

Scything Talons
Reroll to-hit rolls of 1 in assault, models with a pair of talons reroll all failed to-hit rolls

Rending Claws
Grant Rending USR in assault

Crushing Claws
Model I is lowered to 1, +D3 Attacks

At the start of each turn the model regains a lost wound on a 6

Model counts as Jump Infantry

Excerpt from End the Fed

The entire operation of the Fed (-eral Reserve) is based on an immoral principle. Congress contributes to the immorality by permitting the process to continue without any true oversight. The immorality associated with money is as much about omission as commission.

Members of Congress, when they knowingly endorse this system of fraud because of the benefits they receive, commit an immoral act. Financing spending in an irresponsible manner, through Fed action or future debt burdens, provides immediate political benefits to politicians.

Congress, though, is a reflection of the people. If the problem was seen as a moral problem and the people were to demand morality in money from their representatives in government, the process would end. But the people endorse the system because they have requested and expect government to provide benefits that can't be provided any other way. Transferring wealth is limited when taxes and borrowing are the only tools the politicians can use. Printing money is required.

Comment: I like that this is traced back to the People. It's a thought that has been occurring to me with increasing frequency.

Hell Pit Abomination

See more pics here.

Going rate for this bad boy is $250-- that's everything included (model, assembly, conversions and painting). I have one more on hand, actually being converted in anticipation of a buyer. I can order more and get them in process whenever you're ready.

Rand Paul Money Bomb TODAY!

I just donated to Rand Paul's campaign in Kentucky.

"Convinced that the people are the only safe depositories of their own liberty, and that they are not safe unless enlightened to a certain degree, I have looked on our present state of liberty as a short-lived possession unless the mass of the people could be informed to a certain degree." --Thomas Jefferson to Littleton Waller Tazewell, 1805.

More smokin' Jefferson quotes.

Charred Corpses as far as the Eye Can See

Yesterday, a local guy came down to the studio with his High Elf army and played against my Tzeentch Daemons at 2500 pts. I shot a Notrep (with turn summaries but no action) which I hope to edit within the week. It was a relatively close game.

High Elves are one of the top 50% armies out there. They have strengths in close combat, shooting, and magic. Very strong all around. High Elves can cast Drain Magic which makes all casting rolls three points more difficult which can really put a wet blanket on Tzeentch magic. That's fair, of course, because the High Elves are staring down up to twelve dispel dice every turn. No need to take dispel scrolls if you've got eighteen levels of wizards on the table!

Let me first make some comments on my army. You've all seen my list.

Physically, it's a great army to make because it can be made mostly with eight Spawn kits and a lot of green stuff and Tyranid leftovers (though you do need to burn gaunt bodies). Taking into consideration Labor for conversions it's actually one of the most expensive type of armies that we do, but for the person who has time and not money it would be very economical. It breaks 3000 pts pretty easy once you get two Lords of Change in there.

Tzeentch Daemons are tough. Even though they only have Toughness 3, their 5+ ward save can make high strength items (such as chariot impact hits and war machines) just bounce off. On the net I'd say the ward save is as good as a 3+ regular save. The Pink Horrors then are amazingly resilient. I usually run two blocks of thirty and two blocks of ten. That's eighty Horrors. On average there are only 15-30 dead Horrors at the end of any given game. And half of those are usually to combat resolution.

I run the main two blocks at thirty. They require at least 26 Horrors to count as a Level 3 wizard. One change I'm thinking of making is to add a few Horrors just so they can suffer a few more casualties and still be blasting out Bolt of Change (12+ to cast, 2d6 S D6+4 hits-- this will evaporate most enemies, and two of them will destroy even giant dragonlord riders). At Level three the three spells they get are Flickering Fire of Tzeentch (4+ cast magic missile), Gift of Chaos (a 12" radius wave that burns all enemy units), and Bolt of Change (see above). Notice that two of these are magic missiles and so are negated in close combat. It's the Gift of Chaos that gives this army its strength in the late game:

The only way to beat this army is to run right up the middle and try and rip the Horrors to pieces. Unfortunately, once you do that, they Horrors start in with the Gift of Chaos-- waves and waves of magical flame that wear down enemy units.

The other way to give your Horrors a boost in combat is with the Banner of Change (L3 bound spell does 3d6 S3 hits). This is a good use of 25 points as it makes the unit dangerous once it is in close combat. I give it to the ten-man units as well as they are more likely to be dealing with lighter flanking units. Another note about the banner is that the unit can charge, then use the banner in the magic phase. This means that a smaller, lighter unit can potentially be evaporated before the close combat phase.

I've also had the ten-man units hold off much larger threats even though they lose the combat, just by not being completely destroyed.

I don't run Horror champions. The army doesn't work that way (ie the army doesn't win by killing things with lots of attacks). Though I may start running them in the units with the Heralds (the two larger units) to protect them in challenges.

Once in close combat, once the enemy line closes, the Banner of Change and Gift of Chaos (12" wave) are the next phase.

What I dread are large blocks of infantry that can beat my units of Horrors and make them blow up from combat resolution.

The Changeling (a Horror upgrade that can switch almost any stat with an enemy) is a great defender against very strong enemy characters; another line of defense for the late game. I had him knock out Grimgor. I put him in the unit with the Herald BSB as protection.

Another thing I dread is that my opponent will allocate attacks against the Heralds. They are T3, two wounds, and even with a 4+ ward save they die pretty quick. This trims down the magic phase. You got to kill the wizards!

I've also been experimenting with the BSB carrying the Great Icon of Despair (-2 Leadership to enemy units within 12" for 75 pts). The problem here is that I usually forget it, but it can be a game-changer in the late game. It can also prevent an opponent from charging your units (by failing a Fear check) which is a perfect alignment with the needs of the army. On top of that, it can mean death when the Lord of Change flies around back and starts causing Terror checks.

The Lord of Change can be a close combat monster, and with high wounds can break a ranked unit if in the flank. But be careful when you charge in because the Lord of Change is only Ld8 and can be destroyed by losing combat if it jumps into a losing battle. I've found he's much more useful as a spellcaster and threatening smaller units and causing Terror. I run him with Will of Tzeentch (re-roll one die per turn) which is absolutely invaluable since it can prevent miscasts. As for a secondary power, I don't know what is best.

On the four spellcasters (heralds x3 and Lord of Change) I give each of them Flames of Tzeentch (a shooting attack, d6 S4 shots). This adds to the ranged firepower of the army, and is a second line of defense, to mop up weakened units after the magic phase. That's what I'm doing now.

Master of Sorcery (25 pts, gives all spells from a lore of choice) is a great strength since you can tailor your list against problems you may face. But you don't always need it. The Tzeentch spells are unusually strong as it is. It's a great list.

And now back to the game...

First off, Josh is a delightful opponent; knows the rules, but not rules-lawyery, cheerful, great sportsmanship, plays for fun but isn't a push-over. I am very, very much looking forward to playing against him again.

The High Elf army I played against was something like this:
Lord on Star Dragon
2x Mages
2x units spearmen (meat shields for Mages)
2x units fourteen swordmasters (run seven wide-- one with power dice banner, and one with magic resistance banner)
1x unit twenty phoenix guard
2x lion chariots
2x repeater bolt throwers

His Lord on Dragon had something that gave both him and his mount immunity to Flaming Attacks. Everything in my army has Flaming Attacks. We were running it that the spells weren't flaming. But the question remains: if the Herald has Flaming Attacks, does that make his spells Flaming. This would mean that my opponent's dragon lord would have been un-beatable. Of course he died in the end by bouncing off a unit of Horrors and getting run down by the Herald on Disc.

I think this army would be death for Wood Elf armies (they can shoot any direction).

Lion chariots are strong. In a pair coming down the flank they present a huge problem. I recommend. Maybe even better than fast cavalry and the usual harassers.

Lore of Light has some good spells against Daemons.

Rand Paul Money Bomb Tomorrow!

I gotta tell you... when I think of the however remote possibility that Rand Paul might run for president (or Ron Paul himself!) my heart starts racing. I would just be beyond excited. I'll definitely be chipping in for the money bomb tomorrow. What follows is a letter from Ron Paul.

Dear Friend of Liberty,

My son Rand has the status quo running scared in his race for Kentucky Senate. First, he outraised his opponent. Next, Rand took the lead in the polls. And now, the party insiders are scrambling.

We just found out that the National Republican Senatorial Committee has formed a joint fundraising committee to support Rand's opponent. These party bosses are desperate to keep Rand out of the Senate because they know he will fight against the big government, high taxes and out of control spending that they helped create. Rand can win, but he needs your help.

On Wednesday December 16th, the grassroots are holding a Money Bomb for Rand. This date is of course the anniversary of the Boston Tea Party and the day we made history together by raising $6 million in one day. Please visit and consider contributing whatever you are able. Every single contribution will help.

This situation reminds me of my return to Congress in 1996. A host of big name national Republicans did not want me back and came into my district to campaign for my opponent. But, with hard work and real grassroots support, I was able to win and come to Washington to fight for Liberty.

We can achieve the same type of victory for Rand if we all come together!

Again, I hope you can participate in Rand's Money Bomb on December 16th at

In Liberty,

Ron Paul

Hell Pit Abomination

Here's our answer to a Hell Pit Abomination. Email me if you want one. Cost is roughly $250 everything included for a finished item (painted and all).

This is mostly done, still needs a little finesse work.

Light Reading

$10 an hour with two kids? IRS Pounces

Shearing the Sheep

Federal Workers Feeling No Pain

Now Let Us Admire The Clever Way In Which Bank Of America Has Screwed Taxpayers Again

More from Clusterstock:

Still a few more posts to go on Bernanke's reconfirmation hearings. In response to a question from Sen. Jim Bunning in November of '05, the only Senator who had the courage and foresight to vote 'nay' in the 99-1 shellacking that officially seated B-52, the failed Chairman said the following:

  • “I believe that the tools available to the banking agencies, including the ability to require adequate capital and an effective bank receivership process are sufficient to allow the agencies to minimize the systemic risks associated with large banks."
  • "Moreover, the agencies have made clear that no bank is too-big-too-fail, so that bank management, shareholders, and un-insured debt holders understand that they will not escape the consequences of excessive risk-taking. In short, although vigilance is necessary, I believe the systemic risk inherent in the banking system is well-managed and well-controlled.”

Bunning responded last Thursday when he entered the above quote into the official record for the 2009 hearings:

  • "That should sound familiar, since it was part of your response to a question I asked about the systemic risk of large financial institutions at your last confirmation hearing in 2005. I’m going to ask that the full question and answer be included in today’s hearing record."
  • "Now, if that statement was true and you had acted according to it, I might be supporting your nomination today. But since then, you have decided that just about every large bank, investment bank, insurance company, and even some industrial companies are too big to fail. Rather than making management, shareholders, and debt holders feel the consequences of their risk-taking, you bailed them out. In short, you are the definition of moral hazard."


Bernanke's denial of what came to pass just 24 months later, and the fact that the Fed's response to the crisis turned out to be the polar opposite of what he promised, is substantial, and in a world where Congress were not so beholden to Wall Street, it would be sufficient grounds for any Senator to vote 'nay' come December 17.

But there is no doubt about this battle of transcripts -- Bunning wins; Bernanke loses. B-52's laughable words are now repeated for emphasis:

  • Moreover, the agencies have made clear that no bank is too-big-too-fail, so that bank management, shareholders, and un-insured debt holders understand that they will not escape the consequences of excessive risk-taking. In short, although vigilance is necessary, I believe the systemic risk inherent in the banking system is well-managed and well-controlled.”

Ouch. Bondholders were made whole in every case except Lehman, and we learned that several banks were judged too big to fail. The Chairman's words have never been cheaper.

Comments: The Federal Reserve has a profound effect on the lives of American Citizens. It is important that we understand what it is.

$25 Billion Cover-up
Excerpt as follows:


I have such enjoyed Red Dwarf that it is now like comfort food. I keep it going in the background when I'm working by myself. For example, it's 2:50am and I'm answering emails. Here's one of my favorite episodes:

What Next?

Unlike usual, the last few months I've been between armies and in no particular rush to make another one. But recently I've been percolating some ideas.

I'm a huge fan of using models outside the GW range, and so rule #1 is that I will use whatever models catch my fancy. The downside is that an army that can't be used in tournaments is really tough to sell later down the line if that becomes necessary.

In case you're interested, here's what I'm thinking of doing:
Orcs and Goblins (not really, Mike Dunn already has a spectacular looking force)
Lizardmen (already done, though)
Slaanesh Daemons (from Rackham Dirz, entirely)
Tomb Kings (from Crocodile Games Anubis figures)
Vampire Counts (lots of models out of range, notably cairn wraiths and necromancers on foot)

Any of these armies would be a lot of fun to play. Orcs and Goblins are a bit unreliable for my taste, though.

Or maybe it's time for another 40K army. I'm thinking Orks or Tau. Or maybe Necrons!

What do you think?

Willow is One!

Willow is one this month. The Gately tradition is that at the first birthday the child gets a chocolate cake to eat with his or her hands. Willow was a prim and proper little lady, unlike the boys who got it on them head to toe.

Bosom of Abraham

About Worgl.

I was a little pressed for time yesterday after posting the article about Worgl. I had meant to make some comments.

Firstly, I often hear others expressing dismay over what may be the collapse of the dollar, or some kind of ominous and un-named financial disaster in the relatively near future. To that I say, don't worry about that. Do get ready and make reasonable precautions, but it's the parasites that have to fear. It's the common man who actually produces something that will be looking good if only he can grasp what is really happening.

If the dollar does collapse (or partially collapse which is already in process) I believe that local communities will step up and take care of business. I am very optimistic about this.

I saw a discovery-channel-type program where this guy went on a biking trip in Belize and a bot fly laid eggs in his scalp. This ring of five sub-dermal maggots tormented him for weeks until he realized what was happening, then it was a simple matter to remove them.

Now, imagine that the bot-fly-maggots are invisible, three feet long, and sucking out a third of your blood and you've got the picture of what's happening to you financially. On the TV they call it a "recession". It's a mysterious thing that just happens. No, not really.

Just to be absolutely clear, I have no hatred or ill-will in my heart. I am careful to guard against this. What I really feel is sadness. I am sad because I know that all of this will come to light in the next life and I think that there will be a gulf that yawns open between those that were taken advantage of and those that understood the system by which they were stripped of their goods. They will see the sorrow of a young married couple with little kids who lost their home, or couldn't pay the bills. In short, I am sad for the bankers and senators.

I am reminded of the story of Abraham and Lazarus (see below). OH YES I WENT THERE!

It also occurs to me that social programs may be the means of closing that gulf. Am I absolved of my responsibility to my fellow-man by paying my taxes? I don't believe that's enough, not nearly enough. But it's something to think about.

This line of thinking also makes a great and terrible burden settle on my heart as a small business owner. If the business is prosperous I have a responsibility to those that work for me. And in the next life (not too far away! Maximum forty years!) the books will be opened and they will see how they fared.

For my part I am happy. When I harp on these things it is not because I am dissatisfied with my situation on the net. On the contrary, I am thrilled and fanatically grateful for what I have. And I praise God and give Him credit for it. It also crosses my mind that if there are behind-the-scenes overlords pulling the strings then maybe they're not doing such a bad job. [a posting about this is coming soon]. I've got what I want in terms of material goods: a splendidly painted Dark Elf army. Don't really need much more.

But that's not really the point. A well-cared-for subservant is still a subservant.

Back to my employees. If BTP is prosperous I have a duty and a stewardship to see that it is managed properly and benefits those that work there, those that labor. Labor is sacred. The product of a man's hands and sweat is holy and it's a grave matter to defraud him of it. And even more to take it from him by force.

When I take profits from the business it is generally not for myself, but for four children who depend on me completely to take care of their physical needs. I protect them against hunger, tooth decay, ailments of the body, and so forth. Oh, and clothes. Not to mention some of the icing of life. And the happiness of a wife who just loves her security. You married men know what I'm talking about.

There is another factor. I don't know the full story. Only the Lord knows the whole situation. I admit the possibility that I am wrong. For all I know the boards of the ten banks on main street Spanish Fork are kind and benevolent who really have the welfare of the common man at heart. It's not such a stretch. I have a friend, a business mentor, who is starting a bank up north. This has ripped my mind in two. He's such an upright person, and a pillar of the community, and was such a great help to me in my formative time as a businessman. It baffles me that he's involved in this dirty business. I'm not sure how to broach the matter, if at all, or if he even would have time for it.

Remember: war, poverty, and central banking are all related. I am a proponent of putting the maximum amount of power (time/money/will etc.) into the hands of the individual. I believe in the wisdom and goodness of the small community.

(1) Abraham and Lazarus (Luke 16)
19 ¶ There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:

20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house:
28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they bepersuaded, though one rose from the dead.

PS- don't think that it's escaped notice that I might very well be the rich man in this parable. Who is laid at my gate? Who could I have helped but didn't? What can I do more?

Fateweavers: against the Orcs

My good friend Mike D. came down for a game tonight-- a perfect Saturday night. I shot a ton of footage and plan on making a rather detailed battle report. Here's the army list I took. This includes the exact spells I rolled up. It's a pretty tough list with a TON of magic (something like 19 casting dice) and shooting (spellcasters have Flames of Tzeentch for shooting).

I think for the Herald on Disc it might be better to go with Tzeentchian magic rather than the Lore of Shadows.

I greatly enjoy playing this army. Win or lose it's a fun time with lots of crazy stuff going on.

2500 Pts - Daemons of Chaos Roster - Fateweavers

Lord of Change (1#, 605 pts)
1 Lord of Change @ 605 pts (Flaming Attacks; General; Hand Weapon; Level 4 Wizard; Causes Fear; Causes Terror; Daemonic; Flyer; Immune to Psychology; Large Target)
1 Tzeentch's Will
1 3. Glean Magic
1 4. Gift of Chaos
1 5. Bolt of Change
1 6. Tzeentch's Firestorm

Herald of Tzeentch (1#, 185 pts)
1 Herald of Tzeentch @ 185 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Locus of Tzeentch; Level 2 Wizard; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Disc of Tzeentch (Flaming Attacks; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Flyer; Immune to Psychology)
1 Master of Sorcery
1 Flames of Tzeentch
1 1. Steed of Shadows
1 2. Creeping Death
1 3. Crown of Taidron
1 4. Shades of Death
1 5. Unseen Lurker
1 6. Pit of Shades

Herald of Tzeentch (1#, 140 pts)
1 Herald of Tzeentch @ 140 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Locus of Tzeentch; Level 2 Wizard; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Flames of Tzeentch
1 2. Boon of Tzeentch
1 6. Tzeentch's Firestorm

Herald of Tzeentch (1#, 240 pts)
1 Herald of Tzeentch (Battle Standard Bearer) @ 240 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Locus of Tzeentch; Level 2 Wizard; Battle Standard Bearer; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Great Icon of Despair
1 Flames of Tzeentch
1 1. Flickering Fire of Tzeentch
1 4. Gift of Chaos

Pink Horrors of Tzeentch (31#, 463 pts)
30 Pink Horrors of Tzeentch @ 463 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Musician Mus; Standard Bearer Std; Daemonic Icons; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 The Changeling (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Banner of Change
1 1. Flickering Fire of Tzeentch
1 4. Gift of Chaos
1 5. Bolt of Change

Pink Horrors of Tzeentch (30#, 403 pts)
30 Pink Horrors of Tzeentch @ 403 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Musician Mus; Standard Bearer Std; Daemonic Icons; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Banner of Change
1 1. Flickering Fire of Tzeentch
1 4. Gift of Chaos
1 5. Bolt of Change

Pink Horrors of Tzeentch (10#, 157 pts)
10 Pink Horrors of Tzeentch @ 157 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Standard Bearer Std; Daemonic Icons; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Banner of Change
1 1. Flickering Fire of Tzeentch

Pink Horrors of Tzeentch (10#, 157 pts)
10 Pink Horrors of Tzeentch @ 157 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Standard Bearer Std; Daemonic Icons; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology)
1 Banner of Change
1 1. Flickering Fire of Tzeentch

Flamers of Tzeentch (4#, 140 pts)
4 Flamers of Tzeentch @ 140 pts (Flaming Attacks; Hand Weapon; Causes Fear; Daemonic; Immune to Psychology; Skirmishers)
1 Flames of Tzeentch

Validation Report:
Army Subtype: Daemons of Chaos; Edition: 7th Edition; Game Type: Normal Game; Special
Roster satisfies all enforced validation rules

Total Roster Cost: 2490

Created with Army Builder - Try it for free at


Last night we had the staff Christmas Party up at Sarah's. It was perfect. After hanging out for a few hours, snacking on finger food, we went upstairs to play Rock Star 2. Video forthcoming.

We got home around 1am.

This last week we celebrated Willow's first birthday. As a Gately Family tradition we baked her a medium-sized chocolate cake and let her go to town on it by herself. She just had a great time with it.

I happened on this very interesting article about a small town called Worgl. It is my belief that this is what happens when the pressure exerted on the economy by banks is lifted:


More about Worgl (I have repeated this article below)

Also of interest is this article about Liberty Dollars

I found this article absolutely fascinating. What happened in this town is completely in line with what I think is really going on re: my earlier articles about banks in my small town. It is my theory that with the elimination of excessive taxation and the effects of fractional reserve banking, your material condition would improve by at least double. Half your life is invisibly taken from you.

Think of it this way, if you live to age 75 and begin working full time at age 20, you will work about 110,000 hours. This represents your life in terms of labor. If an outside force takes twenty percent of your income somehow without returning something else of value, it has taken the equivalent of 22,000 hours of your labor or literally sucked out your life. When the constitution says your life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, your life is your labor.

Community Currency
There was a time when people were so convinced that the earth was flat, that the idea that it was round was inconceivable.

Likewise today, the idea of a community or region issuing and using its own currency and running its own bank may seem just inconceivable.

But it has happened.

The Worgl Schillings

In the early 1930s the small town of Worgl in the Austrian Tyrol, suffering like every other town in Europe and America from the Great Depression, took the unlikely step of issuing its own currency.

Its burgomaster, Michael Unterguggenberger, faced an empty treasury, because the unemployed citizens could not pay their taxes; roads and bridges needed repair and parks needed maintenance, for which the town could not pay; and idle men and women earned no wages.

He recognised that all three problems could be solved if he could find the connecting link.

That link was money. The three problems coexisted because no one had any of it, and his simple solution was to create money locally.

He issued numbered 'labour certificates' to the value of 32,000 schillings, in denominations of 1, 5 and 10 schillings, respectively. These became valid only after being stamped at the town hall, and depreciated monthly by 1 per cent of their nominal value.

It was possible for the holders to 'revalue' them by the purchase, before the end of each month, of stamps from the town hall, in the process creating a relief fund.

'The small town of Worgl in the Austrian Tyrol, suffering like every other town in Europe and America from the Great Depression, took the unlikely step of issuing its own currency'

The depreciation not only encouraged rapid circulation, but also the payment of taxes, past, current and upcoming. These taxes were used to provide social and public services.

At the end of each year, it was required that the notes be turned in for new ones. No charge was made for the transaction if the required stamps had been affixed. Subject to a 2 per cent deduction, the town also undertook to convert the labour notes into Austrian schillings.

To facilitate this conversion at any time - and thereby provide a cover for the relief certificates - the trustees deposited at the local Raiffeisen Bank (credit union) an amount in Austrian currency equivalent to the issued local currency.

The money was loaned out to trustworthy wholesalers at 6 per cent interest. Interest thereby flowed back into the town treasury, yet further facilitating transactions with the 'outside' world.

Wages paid in the new money

The burgomaster put this money into circulation by paying 50 per cent - later raised to 75 per cent - of the wages of the town's clerical and manual workers in the new money.

The workers found that all businesses in Worgl accepted the currency in payment and at face value, and the notes returned to the parish treasury as dues and taxes. Economically, there was no inflation, and politically, the money was unanimously acceptable to all the municipal parties.

'Because it was a depreciating currency, it circulated with rapidity, boosting the local economy. Further, many paid their taxes in advance because it was financially advantageous'

Because it was a depreciating currency, it circulated with rapidity, boosting the local economy. Also, not only did people merely pay their current taxes in the currency, but also discharged their tax arrears. Further, many paid their taxes in advance because it was financially advantageous.

Apart from the obvious employment benefits, physical assets were created. These included improvements in the main street and its drainage system, street lighting, new road construction, manufacturing of kerb stones and drainage pipes, construction of a ski-jumping platform, and fencing and construction of a new water reservoir.

Although the Worgl money was unanimously accepted at the local level, there was great opposition from two centralist forces - the Tyrol Labour Party and the Austrian State Bank.

In both cases, there seemed to be the fear of the experiment spreading, for the idea was copied by the neighbouring town of Kirchbichel. The town monies were valid in both places. Other towns in the Tyrol also decided on issuing depreciating money, but did not proceed because of threats from the State Bank.

The experiment curtailed

Ultimately, the State Bank threatened legal proceedings and on September 1st 1933, the experiment was terminated.

In an analysis, Unterguggenberger concluded that depreciating currency fulfils the functions of money much better than unvarying nationalised currency. He noted that no difficulties or complaints had arisen in making payments in the new currency or in affixing stamps, and that the local currency was accepted by all businesses very shortly after starting the project.

He also suggested that, not only did it work at the town level, but it could also be applied in larger entities including regions, provinces and the state.

Although the experiment was terminated in Austria, it was noted and tried elsewhere. In Canada, for instance, the government of the Province of Alberta set up a provincial depreciating currency in the mid-1930s in the form of Prosperity Certificates.

The 'danger' of its success prompted the central government to ban it.

What lessons?

What lessons can be learnt? First and foremost, that there is nothing sacred about the 'national' money with which we grew up.

Money - as information technology, metal chips, paper slips and electronic blips - is what people will accept in payment for goods and services and taxes.

'It was the fact that the community or regional money could be used to pay taxes, and also exchanged for familiar national currency, that made it acceptable and successful'

If they will accept community or regional money, then it is as good as Ls or $s or Dms. It was the fact that the community or regional money could be used to pay taxes, and also exchanged for familiar national currency, that made it acceptable and successful.

'A depressed community in an apparently hopeless situation found a way of ending the seemingly insoluble problems of unemployment'

The most important lesson, however, is that a depressed community in an apparently hopeless situation found a way of ending the seemingly insoluble problems of unemployment, local decline and lack of a reliable tax base, symbiotically through the use of community-owned currency.

The prime candidate for the cause of community and regional decline is the centralised banking and money system. By definition, 'national' money is political.

The banks are also political in as much as they make policies to siphon off local wealth and value into their central financial vortex.

'The centralised banks collect money from the regions in a nation and invest in a booming area'

This vortex is well described by Myrdal's 'cumulative causation effect.' The centralised banks collect money from the regions in a nation and invest in a booming area, creating a further boom, which demands more national money from the regions, which creates...

Conversely and concurrently, the communities and regions are deprived of their wealth - via the national money - to feed the voracious appetite of the centre. Even if some of that money is re-imported into the community or region, it is as externally controlled capital.

In the process the communities or regions lose control of their economy, and also their political systems, becoming dispensable 'Regions of Sacrifice'. Scotland is a prime example.

A duplication of the process is now evolving in the push for a European central bank and a single European currency.

From observation and experience, there is no doubt that the European Monetary System will be used to enhance a corridor of centralised financial power running from London to Zurich and connected to the other major financial centres of Europe, including possibly Moscow. The centralisation of power has always created problems, and its abuse comes as no surprise.

The appropriate decentralisation of power, known as the Principle of Subsidiarity, can and should take place. This principle states that the priority for decision-making and action-taking should be at the most decentralised level possible. Only when those decisions and actions impinge upon the well-being of the next larger communities or regions, should those too have an influence.

'It will require authorisation to be given to local and regional governments to create their own currency in the form of non-interest bearing local bonds to be used as money'

In practical terms, it will require authorisation to be given to local and regional governments to create their own currency in the form of non-interest-bearing local bonds to be used as money.

Community Barter

In discussing these ideas, it is also important to understand the difference between community currency and community barter systems.

A community barter system - like the LETSystem, which is not community currency - is usually based on voluntary organisational sharing of information about goods and services available from individuals in an area. The accounting is usually based either on time or the nationalised currency (pounds, dollars, etc).

Such a system has three basic weaknesses:

- It tends to be limited in scope to a handful of dedicated practitioners, usually in largely rural or semi-rural areas.

- It does not cater for transactions outside the community.

- It encourages hoarding, rather than the circulation of wealth and energy, and can only expand by recruiting new producers - there are no 'built-in' inducements to encourage the circulation of goods and services.

A community currency, on the other hand, can be used by anyone in the community as a 'means of payment' for any commodity or service.

The only limit to the expansion of its circulation is its acceptability, so it encourages all forms of economic activity. If suitable provision is made for 'convertibility', it can facilitate transactions with people and organisations outside the community, and indeed encourage community 'import replacement'.

Also, of course, communities may agree - as they did in the Tyrol - to accept each other's currency at par.

Workable now?

The example of Worgl suggests several prerequisites for success:

- The currency be accepted by local government and other 'official' organisations in payment for taxes, rents, licences, etc, and be used by them for their own local payments.

- It must be exchangable into national currency, though some deterrents to conversion - a discount on face value, perhaps - may be needed to prevent the whole issue from disappearing from circulation.

- It is essential to encourage the circulation of community money and to discourage 'hoarding', through automatic depreciation.

The demise of the Worgl experiment has its lessons, too. It will be necessary to amend the present situation under which only the state - English or European - can issue money - pounds or ECUs - as legal tender. Otherwise the issuers of community currency, and perhaps even its users, will face state sanctions.

It will also be necessary to persuade workers that they are not being cheated if part or all of their pay is in community currency.

The experiment is surely worth trying, and the growing strength of the regional movement in Britain and Europe suggests that there would be political support in many places for such initiatives.


Another day in Paradise. As usual I am actively engaged in setting up projects in this case for January.

A few days back there was quite a blizzard. I'd say about a foot of snow which has now hardened into ice and icicles. It's below freezing.

We are refinancing our home. The mortgage company we are currently with kept faxing blank paper to the new company thus delaying the transaction and squeezing one final payment out of us. My wife had to drive all the way to Salt Lake, babes in arms, to actually stand there while they did it right. Pathetic.

I got to go up against the Skaven again. In the first game I was routed hideously. The second game was as close as a game ever is, a mere 40 point difference in score.

I took the kids out for pizza. Willow ate the toppings off about three pieces, contentedly picking off each varied-color type. I expect her crap to look like confetti tomorrow morning. She is a mild baby, and a delight to take out in public. This excursion was for the purpose of giving my wife a few hours peace.

The studio is like a furious machine, pistons churning. Projects are turning out just fabulously, the whole standard of quality surging forwards. Assembly is nearly caught up, which is a mighty rarity.

We are especially interested in getting some larger models on the docket. I'm thinking Forge World titans of any type, larger vehicles, super-heavies and the like.


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