1 (edited by opeteroo 2005-12-05 23:09:31)

Topic: What can we do?

The second quoted text below is a post I made to start a similar thread over at WRH

My story is a really long one but very briefly here is my background. I am 60 and a Canadian. I owned and operated a recording studio and sound company for 14 years and then a computer services company for another 12 years. I did well and retired in 1993 when I was 46 because I could no longer stand life on the treadmill. I cashed out everything I had and moved to a small village in mexico where I lived for the next 12 years.

I lost my life's savings in a bank fraud in mexico 7 years ago and had to go back to work. Loosing all my money was the best thing that ever happened to me as it made me realize how little what money can buy really matters. It also made me take a serious look at how the world functions. I always knew things were bad but never realized how bad.

To make a living in Mexico I went to work doing computer support and graphic design. I ended up working mostly for elite billionaires to promote their affairs in major magazines and on the web. I once again made a good living but felt horrible about what I was doing.

Most gringo's in mexico treat the poor mexicans better than the wealthy mexicans do but that isn't saying much. Even though I lived a simple life among the poor I felt corrupt for helping those who took advantage of them.

I am pretty certain that current western society will collapse sometime soon and I did not want to get caught in mexico. I have many good mexican friends but once the high and mighty gringos are brought down to the same level as their poor servants there will be a time of reprisals that I want no part of. I also realized that as long as I stayed in mexico I would have to work at jobs I thought were destructive.

I decided that we were all slaves to the system of money and that I would change my life to live in such a way that I didn't need money or contribute anything to the system in any way. I decided to move back to Canada and started researching possible locations suitable to my goals. I have actually worked and lived in the wilderness a fair amount and know the outback of canada pretty well. I arrived back in canada in april of this year and settled on a remote community called Ocean Falls which is accessible only by ferry or float plane. It is on the coast of British columbia about half way up to Alaska. I am currently wintering in Ocean Falls with the intent of moving totally out of civilization next year when I know what the winters will bring and be better prepared to survive on my own.

Here's a few links to a photo log I set up for friends to keep them abreast of my activities.

Ocean Falls is on the coast of British Columbia about halfway up to Alaska. The only access is by ferry, barge or float plane. It was a pulp mill town of 5,000 people until the 80's when the mill was shut down. It is now a town of about 20 fulltime residents and about 150 summer residents.

Here is a brief photo history of Ocean Falls.


Here is a photo log of my first trip to Ocean Falls


Here is a photo log of my progress in Ocean Falls to Oct 05


Here are some area photos in Nov 05, our first snowfall was Nov 11.


Here are some photos of my first trip onto Link Lake to check out abandoned cabins one of which will be my home next year. This trip only explores the first location, there are about 20 cabins on a number of different sites.

http://www.oneworldnetwork.org/wrh/nov2 … creek.html

What can we do?

Discussing the above is the only subject that really interests me at this point and I have a bad habit of interjecting it into all conversations so I am going to start this thread to try to stay on subject.

Already I find time on the internet is again taking up large blocks of my time, time which I feel I could utilize better elsewhere. I am going to try to restrict the discussions I get involved in.

I feel I have learned enough about the way the world of mankind works that I don't need to spend any more time disecting the process. I trust the knowledge I have gained to the point where I feel I can proceed to act on it. I don't feel comfortable with what I have learned so its time to come up with an alternative.

As was discussed in my post from the wilderness that Lady Lilya put up; masses of information are a great distractor to keep people from acting. The internet is probably the best tool yet invented to enable this process. To make sure you don't fall into this trap I would consider setting a goal post as a lifeline.

What do you need to know before you switch from data gathering to utilizing the data?

If you have a clear picture of this point then you will recognize it when you reach it and have the option of pulling yourself out of the data stream.

As I mentioned in another thread, "everything is true" so if you are looking for a single truth to act from you won't find it.

How can this be?

The conclusions I have come to (they are open to being changed) is that all events always exist we only travel through them like we would a landscape, we mostly see what is in front of us. When someone appears to lie they are only speaking from a point on the eventscape that is slightly removed from the current locality. The lie is true there but not here.

It takes skill to stay tightly focused on the current incarnation and some people are better at it than others. It is possible to lie to yourself. The more focused your attention is on the current incarnation, the more relevant what you see is to HERE.

It is important to realize that not all information acurately portrays here and act accordingly. I do not judge people for what they say or do I just make an assesment of how accurately their vision portrays the here. If I decide to trust other people's vision I incorporate it into my view if not I don't. If they can make their vision work, more power to them.

I think there is a place where mankind can become gods and take over the direction of nature but I don't believe it is here. Here, humanity simply doesn't have the clarity of vision to take on such a complex undertaking.

What I am doing is eating a bit of humble pie and admitting my limitations. Rather than trying to overwhelm nature I am reducing my actions to becoming an integral part of nature by letting nature direct my actions.

Without judgement.... What I see as not working properly in society is that one group of people that believes they can overpower nature has gained control over the majority of society and are using the power they have gained to apply massive pressure on nature. They simply don't have the skill to accomplish what they seek. Its like trying to fix a TV with a bone club.

I want to stop contributing to this effort. In order to do this I need to clearly understand how my energy is collected and added to the effort. Once I understand this process I can try to avoid it.

There is no question in my mind that society's direction is decided and guided by an elite rather than by common democratic consensus. By living by society's rules we are contributing to this elite guided effort.

The way this control is accomplished is through how goods are distributed. The commercial system defines who gets goods and how much each person gets. Those who control the commercial system (international bankers) can force others into acceptable patterns of action simply by defining what people have to do in order to get the goods needed for survival. People have no choice but to comply if they have no alternative means of survival. This is the case for most people in western civilization.

Money is the medium of exchange of goods that powers our commercial system and international bankers control the creation and distribution of money. They control all the central banks that count and can force governments and all other organizations to comply with their direction.

In order to stop following the dictates of the international bankers we have to stop utilizing their services and come up with an alternative; in other words stop depending on or utilizing money.

Maya made a great post elsewhere suggesting switching to a distribution system called Potlach which does not require money or barter. It worked well for many people for extended periods but was overpowered by the banker's system. The bankers needed to destroy free distribution of goods in order to give them the power to decide who gets what. Once they controlled distribution they could control what people did.

There are two major steps involved in breaking free of this control.

1) Most of us no longer know how to survive without the banker's help so we need to relearn skills that our ancestors posessed.

2) We need to define a new method of distribution of goods that takes the bankers out of the loop.

The above are subjects that I am interested in discussing in detail.


We also need to decide what to retain from the current system and what to discard. The prime commodity of concern for me is technology.

Technology in itself is not good or evil, what is required to posess it and what one utilizes it for determines its morality.

My thoughts on this will be my next post.
"We are the world and the world is us." Krishnamurti

Re: What can we do?

Excellent insights and info.  I'm very much in agreement and interested in hearing more of what you have to say.  Very true regarding control of the people by means of limited distribution, etc.

It seems like you have a lot of knowledge in these areas, so at this point I'm going to just listen, and save questions/comments for later!

This is no time for the righteous
Only the wicked survive
Bake up a batch of the Yellow Cake
Bake up a batch of the lies
- - - - -[ Yellow Cake - Ministry - Rio Grande Blood (2006)

Re: What can we do?

Instead of throwing away the profound concept know as money, why can't we break the current  de facto monopoly on it ?

Just food for thought.

If we were to end most taxation and deregulate banking, new institutions would emerge issuing notes. These notes would be exchanged between consumers and producers.

This free market solution, and the competition it encourages, would end the stranglehold of the banking elite.

Re: What can we do?

Here's a site that connects organic farmers with consumers:




Re: What can we do?

Like you, I am a new member here. I have been reading on NR for a while now and consider it one of the better places to
gather information on the web concerning subjects the participants here are interested in.

You are indeed one of the first people I find that actually have gone "beyond words". Completely I mean. Some of us do our
best to "get started", but I agree with you that unless a "catastrophe" happens (that turns out - later - to have been a
blessing) to us, we most often never get far in "leaving the threadmill". I read your story and your answer to how the world
functions. It can be a real stimulation for all of us here. My own story is not th  t much different from yours.

In a way, you are "lucky" to be Canadian. There are few countries left in the world like Canada, naturewise. Yet, it takes
great courage to do what you are doing.

The main reason I decided to register at NR was your subject title, "What can we do". I was planning on registering soon,
but this subject is as close to my heart as it is to yours probably.

I am a bit younger, 48. And I live in Europe. While I have "always" (well, very early anyway, age 10...) been studying the
paranormal, psychic, spiritual, alternative...it was in 1977 about that I began to think about that very particular
question: "What can I do?".

Since then I have walked on many paths, tried out so many possibilities that I wonder where I kept finding the options. But,
like you, I found out that "the world" was becoming a place that became more and more "ruled" by money and power. My
solutions were not the same as yours, somehow I feel that your choice and what I have in mind are very complementary. And others here no doubt, are having other puzzlepieces.

Maybe when we - here - put our puzzlespieces together, something that actually can work practically may be the outcome.

So, this post just as an introduction. I hope we can have a constructive exchange of ideas going here. 

And Tom...thanks for creating and maintaining this Place...it is much needed!

Re: What can we do?

Thanks to Peter and another on-line friend I've taken the first baby steps to self-sufficiency.  I knew I should do this but needed encouragement I guess.  I planted a few vegetables in containers, started storing water and food; just a minimal effort.  Started the vegetables way too late but will be ready next year.  Ya gotta start somewhere.

Re: What can we do?

Soloflecks wrote:

Here's a site that connects organic farmers with consumers:




Thanks for those links, Soloflecks!

And thank you for this thread, opeteroo.


8 (edited by opeteroo 2005-12-06 19:43:32)

Re: What can we do?

I am largely convinced that our system of commerce is to blame for our problems. It was designed to allow manipulation for personal benefit and no matter who runs it or how much it is modified that temptation will always be there. There are very few people who can resist temptation.

The quotes below refer to primitive cultures but I believe similar concepts could be used to provide us with the technology we decide is of benefit. I don't believe we have to revert to being cave dwellers to live as suggested below.

As a start to discussing alternatives to commercial systems I would like to quote a few posts over at WRH. I hope these quotes are OK, I won't do it regularly, I just want to set the stage a little. From this point on I will keep the conversation here.

Maya wrote...

Living the Potlatch as an Economy; The Economy of Giving and Sharing

First of all, a Potlatch is a community effort based soley upon gathering/growing resource (mainly food), creating gifts , and giving everything not needed for the community it's self freely to other communities in the form of a great feast, gifting, and party. Communities then invite each other from Potlach to Potlatch in a continuous spread of goods and resources through ongoing re-distribution.

(Today, a community means more than one, as in two or more...i.e. the family, not the entire village or orgazational unit as it once did.)

Mostly, a Potlatch is a giant feed created from what you have grown, gathered, or recieved at another Potlatch, all that you have "put-up" and canned or stored extra from it, items made by members of your family community (even children may give their latest art work to guests) as gifts, musicians play their music, story-tellers and poets emote, dancers dance their lastest moves to the music they're moving to. Everyone eats, drinks, and merries to the hilt, and the guests take their bounty (including any left-overs) home when it's over. They can last one night, or planned for even longer. Money may also be Potlatched as you find you have more than you need by living within the Economy of Potlatch giving!

And there is nothing wrong with sending some of that Potlatch bounty you recieve as gifts to those on your list for gift giving....after all, this IS about giving to other communities is it not?

Make a list of those you know who might/would be interested in being a part of Potlatching communities, and set up a meeting to propose the idea to them.

Meals could even be done as a pot-luck, with everyone bringing their gifts and talents for distribution, pot-luck style as well (as in, no prior planning other than just showing up and taking turns if turns need taken). Or they may be done family to family(s) to family(s) by invitation. There is no size limit, either direction, as to how big a Potlatch is, to be considered as such, as long as everyone gets the same in gifts to take home. The quality and quantity of gifts given, and being the hosts with the most, is all that limits a Potlatch! The best part is, there isn't even a limit on the number of hosts one can have at one!

The main principle behind the Potlatch, is to give to communities (and individuals w/o community) which do not have enough of what you have, which includes inviting the homeless and the poor to them as well, it is considered bad form to give only to those who already have. And everyone, even the poor and homeless, have many talents and stories to share!

What to do with the extra bushels of apples and potatoes (or whatever) you got at that Potlatch you just got back from? Invite other communities (families) (not anyone who was at the apple/potatoes Potlatch) to a Potlatch you now get to throw for them! Keeping the apples and potatoes you DO need, and adding the rest to your gifts of abundance and creativity to give for distribution.

All guests are required to take all of their gifts home, all over-abundance is then added to the Potlatch cycle of giving. Potlatch to Potlach, cycling everything abundant, created, and talented out as gifts in giving.

Once something has been given, it's time to create, grow, or make even more to give at your next one to keep the cycle going, and growing. Once a Potlatch has been attended, it is only polite to invite the host community(s) to one of yours as well. It's much like a lump of sour-dough, it has to be cycled in use to keep going, or it dies and becomes useless, and that's the end of it.

Why not join the circle of living the Potlatch? Where everyone gets to give and get from the abundance and bounty of all!


Peter wrote....

Thanks Maya very well put. For those who have been here a long time this material suggests a viable way of implementing concepts we were discussing in the "No Money" thread.

Where I currently live is the land of the Potlach. I am not sure if it originated here or was practiced elsewhere other than the NW coast of North America.

Before the white man came this was the way of life for all the native tribes (about 7 distinct nations) ranging from Alaska to Oregon. It is still practiced by most natives here and some westerners.

This is a way of life that I feel comfortable in and support with all my heart. I have lived according to these concepts on an individual level pretty much my whole life.

Maya wrote ....

Actually, most "primitive" cultures live by this pattern. I used the Potlatch as the model, as it's the only one I could find with a distinct "name" to it.

It's a way of life where no one actually "works", and only a fraction of life is actually spent on day to day needs, such as eating.

White man saw this as lazy and unproductive, we all know the history of THAT! They outlawed the Potlatch! Sent in troups to break them up and arrest the partiers they did!

Tells me, there's something GOOD about Potlatching, if it scared white man so much!

and ....

Falcon wrote...

Yaromir- Well I brought up the question earlier that if these smaller share type collectives are so successfull, then why have none endured? Why has the standard system of basically "might makes right" been the dominate system to prevail even if it repeatedly collapses yet always seems to dominate over the share type system?

Yaromir wrote...

But is that system a trully successful one? A cancer might overwhelm the body to the point where there is more cancer tissue than there is "regular" cells. It will, however, perish with the body.

These "successful" models periodicly perish, and occasionaly (~12,000 years) perish with a BANG! that leaves scattered, scared and confused people in its wake.

opetero wrote...

The analogy of a cancer poses an interesting question.

When a new society starts over where cancer is not already rampant what can it do to minimize the risks of cancer?

We are what we eat.

Is commercialism the food that society dies from?

Yaromir wrote...

Interesting question. What is "commercialism"?

opetero wrote...

The meaning I give commercialism is any means of distribution of goods that places a set value on an item. When there is value it allows barter or commerce.

The opposite of commercialism is what Maya describes as gifting. People simply share without consideration of value or expectation of compensation. Everything is freely shared. Potlach is an example of such a culture.

In such a culture people use what they need and gift any excess to others, the interaction of gifting between communities gets goods distributed to where they are needed. If you don't need what you are given you simply pass it on (give it away) and eventually someone who needs it gets it.

Such a simple concept... but the bane of the bankers. Thats why they outlawed it.

Yaromir wrote...

Very fascinating. Unworkable in modern urban societies though.
I seem to be getting to the same problem of self(or small community)-assured survival.

Not trying to be difficult, but what is "value"?

opetero wrote...

Value is deciding 1 duck is worth two apples or $1. Doing so introduces a whole host of ways to manipulate distribution and gain from it. You can convince people in one place that their ducks are only worth 1 apple and buy their ducks. You can then go to where ducks are worth two apples and trade them for two apples. You have then taken advantage of everyone in the cycle to your own advantage. To gain more advantage all you have to do is hord ducks or apples to make them scarce and drive up their value.

Money makes the situation even worse, even if you don't control its creation. Money lets you take your ill gotten gains and convert them into a commodity that is less perishable and easy to transport. Instead of having to store large quantities of horded ducks and/or apples you just have to count your money.

You can abuse a market in one place and become hated and then simply slip away to some other community and buy respectability with your ill gotten money from elsewhere.

Accountability to your neighbors is probably the most critical element of a long lived healthy society.

When you can create as much money as you want at will you don't even have to abuse the market place directly you can simply print all the money you need. This does affect the market as a glut of money reduces its value.


I think the concept of gifting will scale to larger communities but it will take a major change in people's thinking to entertain such a notion and give it a chance.

soulsurvivor wrote...

It will become a major change when people begin to acquire the ability to meet all of their own needs without assistance from outside sources, or at least with less assistance than is now needed. It's going to change everything, especially when realization hits that money will no longer be needed.

Re: What can we do?

google wrote:

Instead of throwing away the profound concept know as money, why can't we break the current  de facto monopoly on it ?

Just food for thought.

If we were to end most taxation and deregulate banking, new institutions would emerge issuing notes. These notes would be exchanged between consumers and producers.

This free market solution, and the competition it encourages, would end the stranglehold of the banking elite.

Hi Google smile pleased to meet you

My post just above this one touches this subject but I'll clarify a bit.

In order to create the changes you suggest we would actually have to have input into how commerce functions. Is this a realistic expectation? I no longer think so. The system was designed to do exactly what it does and those that control it and us are not about to let us mess with it.

I would like to concentrate my efforts here on defining alternatives not on how the elite achieved this control. That information is available in many places. If you would like more details email me and I will send you some links to learn more. smile

Re: What can we do?

Hi Spiegel... nice post smile

I was actually born in Berlin, we moved to Canada when I was 6.

Your point about having similar goals but different paths is a really important one.

Even though the bankers are the ones abusing the human race we bear as much responsibility for the situation as they do. What allowed our current situation to develop is many people being willing to play follow the leader instead of paying attention to what was going on. We are trusting by nature and were convinced that others (willing leaders) would look after our best interests (survival?) allowing us to concentrate on pleasure rather than dealing with the boring details of living.

Rather than thinking for ourselves we became a herd following leaders that chose our direction for us. Instead of thinking about right and wrong we sat back and let others define the rules. This willingness to follow orders gave our leaders great power over us.

For there to be lasting change it is not enough just to remove those leaders that are currently abusing us. We will still be vulnerable to being led and whoever replaces the current leaders will eventually become corrupted by the power we give them.

For there to be lasting change we need to change. We need to stop following leaders and take responsibility for our own lives. This can only be achieved through individual initiative because as soon as we accept direction from others we stop thinking for ourselves.

We as individuals can come to similar conclusions and decide to cooperate towards common purposes but it has to be from a place of inner understanding and belief rather than just group conformance pressure.

What this means is there is no one answer to fit everyone instead everyone has their own unique answer. We need to develop a societal model that allows common interests but individual paths. Instead of the individual being shaped to society, society needs to be shaped to indivduals.

This sounds difficult to achieve but is actually the pattern that humans fall into naturally when there is no large dominant controlling influence. Whenever empires have collapsed the survivors have organically organized into such communities. The communities did well for individuals until a new  group bent on domination took over.

A book I referred to in another thread called "Human Scale" by Kirkpatrick Sale (1980) does an excellent job of describing the process and documents successful/unsuccessful historical models. I highly recommend this book as it offers much insight into our problems.

http://forum.noblerealms.org/viewtopic. … 179#p28179

Re: What can we do?

This might give people some perspective   www.transaction.net/money/ 

google wrote:
Instead of throwing away the profound concept know as money, why can't we break the current  de facto monopoly on it ?

Just food for thought.

If we were to end most taxation and deregulate banking, new institutions would emerge issuing notes. These notes would be exchanged between consumers and producers.

This free market solution, and the competition it encourages, would end the stranglehold of the banking elite.

Hi Google  pleased to meet you

My post just above this one touches this subject but I'll clarify a bit.

In order to create the changes you suggest we would actually have to have input into how commerce functions. Is this a realistic expectation? I no longer think so. The system was designed to do exactly what it does and those that control it and us are not about to let us mess with it.

I would like to concentrate my efforts here on defining alternatives not on how the elite achieved this control. That information is available in many places. If you would like more details email me and I will send you some links to learn more.

Re: What can we do?

Sorry I suck at posting right now so I didn't know how to make www.transaction.net/money/   into a link.     Damn I suck.   I'm sure someone can help me please.

Re: What can we do?

Wow it did it that  time what gives

14 (edited by tenetnosce 2005-12-07 11:58:22)

Re: What can we do?

Commerce is the law of exchange, and I think starting from there can be insightful.

I am going to give you something, and I am expecting something in return.  This can be money, goods, or services, or a promise for money, goods, or services.

When things are being exchanged within short periods of time, there is little need for law.  I give you a cup of coffee, and you give me $1.50.  If I give you the cup of coffee and you don't give me the $1.50, well then most people would agree that it is useful to have some remedy which can be applied to the situation to make it more equitable.

More severe circumstances arise when there is a promise involved.  I could make a promise, and not be able to, or not want to, to keep it later.  Or I could make a promise with no intention of ever keeping it.

The vast majority of commercial law is focused on the management of these promises.  Commercial law is the oldest known form of written language known at this time.  From old Sumerian documents leading down through the Bible, and historical documents such as the Magna Charta, there is a paper trail of law that dictates how exchanges should be made.

Most of it is common sense, but it is widely open to interpretation, hence the proliferation of judges and lawyers who do this on our behalf, and supposedly for our own benefit.

Most of the problems arise in the realm of interpretation.

It is easy to forget that it really wasn't so long ago that in the U.S., a man's handshake and his word meant something.  Nowadays, it's a meaningless gesture.  Yes, that's very nice, just sign here.

Following the Depression and the World Wars, the people of the U.S. were sold on the idea that commercialism was the gateway to liberty.  Commerce became a value in itself.  It doesn't matter who you do business with, just do more business. 

Simultaneous with this propaganda front, U.S. corporations underwent massive consolidation, much as they are now.  Focus became shifted to how to produce things cheaper and faster.  Quality didn't really matter.  You could sell anything with a smile and a handshake.

All you really had to sell was the promise of the American Dream.  The product was meaningless.  People would buy every time.

The only limitation was money.

Enter your good old pal the Central Banking System.  The only way to assure that there is always enough money floating around is to give all the money to one source, and to grant that source the power to hold the money and issue promises in its place.

What we think of as money is not really money.  Gold is money.  Silver is money.  What we circulate as money is really just a promise for money. 

Well so what, you may think, does it really matter?  I still can go to the store and buy a dozen eggs with my promise.

It matters because the promise can never be kept.  There is no real money left.  The federal government is bankrupt.

So here we go about our daily lives exchanging false promises with each other, and wondering why we are still caught in a web of lies.

So what to do?

Stop borrowing money.

(EDIT:  What I mean here is stop borrowing money entirely.  Not even for a car or a house.  Most people shake their heads in dismay when they hear that you have $20K in credit card debt at 5% while they've got $250K tied up in their mortgage at 6%.)

And if you have already borrowed money, then to get out of debt.  Debts are promises to pay.  In reality, there is nothing to pay with.  But luckily for us the creditors will accept our funny green paper.  They don't really care about the funny green paper.  They've already got the real money.

The game is to get you to keep promising to pay until you make a promise that you can't keep.  When that happens they get control.  It's really quite simple.  Keep your promise.

Awareness of the illusion of money makes it easier for you to acquire it.  We have to play the game for now. 

I like to play a game I call "Where's Ben?"  My old pal Ben Franklin.  Love that guy.  Every time he smiles at me from the face of a $100 bill, I smile right back at him.

I've got about 1500 Ben's left to go until I'm free and clear.

That might seem like a lot of money, but really it's nothing.  So long as I don't borrow any more, I will be fine.

If people stop borrowing money, the whole system will crumble from within.

If people don't stop borrowing money, then eventually our currency will fail.  It is the simple result of too many people with promises that they can't keep.  The whole thing goes poof!

Money manipulators like this scenario because all they have to do is make up another kind of fake money and let you borrow it at a killer interest rate!

I suppose either scenario, or a combination of both, could take place.  In either way, the goal should be to become as self-sufficient as possible.  And then to align with other people who are also self-sufficient.  Then it really doesn't matter how the game ends because you are no longer involved with it.

A bank offers promises to pay in exchange for more promises to pay.  But those promises were made by a bank, and only a bank can keep them.  You can never pay the bank because they have all the money.

So render unto Caesar what is Caesar's and then tell him to piss off because you don't need his promises anymore.

It is not for us to understand love, but simply to make space for it.

Re: What can we do?

How timely. .

December 6, 2005 -- News: (Bloomberg) Housing Bubble Bursts in the Market for U.S. Mortgage Bonds

Bonds backed by home loans to the riskiest borrowers, the fastest growing part of the $7.6 trillion mortgage market, have lost about 2.5 percent since September on concern an 18-month rise in interest rates may force more than 150,000 consumers to default.

``We've been hearing about risks of a house price bubble, easy credit and loans to borrowers that really don't qualify, and now in the last couple of months we're starting to see things turn for the worse,'' said Joseph Auth, a bond fund manager who helps oversee $135 billion at Standish Mellon Asset Management in Boston. ``We don't know if it's going to be a hard or soft landing.''

Mortgage securities with low ratings and loans from Ameriquest Mortgage Co. and New Century Financial Corp., two Irvine, California-based companies that specialize in lending to the 50 million people with histories of late payments and bankruptcies, yield the most in two years. The rise in yields reduced the value of loans made by lenders, resulting in lower profit margins and higher rates for consumers with bad credit.

The slump in the bonds is one of the first signs the housing boom is ending after the Federal Reserve's 12 interest- rate increases. Real estate has accounted for about half the economy's growth since 2001, according to Merrill Lynch & Co.

It is not for us to understand love, but simply to make space for it.