Case Study #3: Why you need a second passport … In recent years, the number of people who are divorcing themselves from the heavy hand of Uncle Sam has been increasing exponentially. In 2013 the number of people renouncing US citizenship jumped 221% over the previous year. In the last quarter of 2013 alone, people abandoning US citizenship jumped 1,402% over the same period a year earlier. This year the number of people refusing to support the system is on course to hit a new record high, despite the government increasing the fee charged to renounce US citizenship by 522%. – Sovereign Man: Notes From The Field email
Dominant Social Theme: You don't need another passport. Where the heck are you going to go anyway?
Free-Market Analysis: Sovereign Man's Simon Black has been writing and distributing "case studies" focused on freedom issues and providing solutions for those who want to take action on a variety of topics.
This analysis will focus on the benefits of a second passport. Black's case study is interesting in part because he discusses Edward Snowden and how his situation was affected by passport issues.
Here's what Simon Black has to say about Snowden and his predicament as a US whistleblower trapped in Russia:
Now, would Mr. Snowden have been aided if he had procured a second passport? The answer, quite simply, is a resounding Yes. Snowden is now marred in a number of banal legal technicalities.
The US government cancelled his passport (another questionable legal move from Uncle Sam). So after being stuck in the international transit area at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport he's now living in an undisclosed location in Russia. He's not legally able to travel anywhere.
If Mr. Snowden had been able to procure a second passport prior to stepping into the limelight, he would likely not be in this predicament, as he could have been traveling on his other passport. This is one of the hidden virtues of having a second passport. You might never 'need' one. But should such a need ever arise, it can really be a life saver.
Black's perspective regarding passports is especially important for US citizens because of legislation affecting people's ability to hold a valid passport outside of the United States.
The US House of Representatives has made two recent efforts at providing government with the ability to revoke passports at will, based either on tax arrears or "suspicion of terrorism." Neither bill has been enacted into law, but their codification and progress must alarm those interested in the ability to travel without significant restrictions.
It is perhaps the terrorism bill that is the most disturbing. According to GovTrack.us, the formal name of bill H.R. 237 is the "FTO (Foreign Terrorist Organization) Passport Revocation Act of 2015."
The bill will allow the U.S. Secretary of State the unchecked authority to prohibit individuals from traveling internationally. According to the bill, the Secretary may unilaterally revoke (or refuse to issue) a passport from "any individual whom the Secretary has determined has aided, assisted, abetted, or otherwise helped an organization the Secretary has designated as a foreign terrorist organization pursuant to section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1189)."
This is pretty significant stuff given that the US government has apparently decided people overly concerned with their eroding constitutional rights may be deemed terrorists. Back in January 2013, constitutional attorney John Whitehead pointed out that under Obama directives the US government labeled constitutionalists as terrorists.
This was accomplished with the signing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). According to Whitehead, military veterans have been remanded to psychiatric hospitals for speaking out about constitutional rights, according to an article at Occupycorporatism.com.
Simon Black continues his passport case study by pointing out that when Ron Paul ran for president, he was mocked by the mainstream media and other candidates for proposing that the US border patrol's strategy was based not on keeping "illegal immigrants" out but keeping US citizens in via a number of different strategies.
Today, given efforts by the House to grant the government broad passport revocation powers, Ron Paul's predictions look increasingly prescient. The number of US citizens seeking to renounce their citizenship keeps growing even though the fee for renunciation keeps climbing. There is considerable suspicion that those who keep track of statistics on such things are fudging the numbers so as to downplay the number of renunciations.
Black ends his article by giving us a perspective on what may be the "best" second passport to have. He believes it is a Brazilian passport.
Why? Because anyone can be Brazilian. It doesn't matter what your ethnicity is; Brazil is a melting pot of 200+ million people. White, black, brown, Asian… it doesn't matter. Even obviously anglo names like Edward Snowden are not terribly uncommon in Brazil. Moreover, Brazil has a very clear policy of not extraditing its citizens.
So if Snowden had become a Brazilian (which anyone can do – via 2-4 years of residency, or marriage, or having a child, hell even adopting a rain forest in some cases), he could be happily living out his days on the beach in Fortaleza, rather than being stuck in Russia.
Right now the demand for citizenship in Brazil is low. Few people are thinking about this… which means the 'cost' is low. You can apply for naturalization in as little as a year, and there are dozens of backdoor loopholes to qualify.
Here at The Daily Bell, we'll shortly be introducing a variety of lifestyle insurance options such as the one that Black has explored, which will introduce locales we consider ideal for securing a second home abroad. Subscribe to The Daily Bell Newswire and ensure you're dialed in to receive investor alerts that share these and other great asset protection and wealth accumulation ideas.