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Gonna have to go with lynx12 semi auto 12 gauge AK. $300 new and more reliable than $1700 saigas. Built by factory that has been making AKs for over 50 years. Uses standard aK furniture/accessories and saiga mags/drums. Rate of fire is 300 rounds per minute which is the same as the full auto aa-12 shotgun which costs $20,000. Zero malfunctions after putting it through its paces so I bought 2 more of the same. All have been flawless and will eat any shotgun shell you care to put through it. Also accepts muzzle brakes which reduce recoil by roughly 70%. No tactical shotgun can touch it Imo and it would be a bargain at 4 times the price. Stick mags in 5, 8, 12 rounds are available and drums in 12, 15, 20, and 25 rounds.
Just remember, the CPI is an index, so items outside of what is averaged together to make the index may be higher or lower than the index.
The CPI is not to be trusted as an accurate measurement of inflation. The government as an institution has a vested interest in flattering the numbers because increases in inflation govern what it has to pay out in interest payments on debt and increases in entitlement payments.

Over the years, many times the government has re-jiggered the way the CPI is figured. Always in reasonable-sounding, justifiable ways. Which tend to downplay the numbers. Substitution bias is one example. Whereby the price of steak goes up, they assume people will buy hamburger instead, result, no increase in price of steak.

Look up gold prices from the 80s, 90s and even early 2000s. I should've bought gold as a kid lol.
My first purchase of Au was in the early 1970's, before it was legal to own bullion. A person could own "collectible" coins minted before a certain date, including foreign strikes. So I had some of those. When in 1974 President Ford allowed Americans to own bullion again, I was one of the early owners of Krugerrands. All of which I cashed out in the big spike of 1980. Then I didn't buy any Au again until 1998, when I noticed that prices seemed very low, under $300 / tr. oz. But keep in mind the time value of money; $300 was worth a lot more then. After that, I kept buying the lows from time to time and haven't sold any.

I've never found a stray gun laying around. But one time when I was a kid, I found a gold coin laying in the gutter. I didn't even know what it was. I put it in a junk drawer and left it there. When I re-discovered it decades later, I looked it up, it was a Turkish coin, the kind wealthy Turkish women used to wear in clusters as decorations on their fancy garments. Very thin.

I used to like owning guns as a store of value. Unfortunately, over time through changes in the law, government has greatly reduced the liquidity position of firearms. Stated more simply, they are harder to sell when you want to get your money out. Legally, anyway.
Years ago I was reading about this new financial thing called Bitcoin. I was intrigued about how it worked, but not being computer tech savvy, I didn't know how one would buy into it.
A while later, I read about a guy who started up a kiosk in Vancouver BC, where you could buy Bitcoin shares for only $125.00 US per share.
I talked to the wife about it, but we didn't have passports and I just let it go.
Years ago I was reading about this new financial thing called Bitcoin. I was intrigued about how it worked, but not being computer tech savvy, I didn't know how one would buy into it.
A while later, I read about a guy who started up a kiosk in Vancouver BC, where you could buy Bitcoin shares for only $125.00 US per share.
I talked to the wife about it, but we didn't have passports and I just let it go.
Yeah, hindsight is a real B. I'm sure a lot of us would have liked to have bought stocks in Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and Google as well. I think back to what my life was like when Bitcoin first made headlines, and had I known what it was and the power it would have in 2023, I would have bought as much of it as humanly possible. I'd be WAY better off today!

I'm mining BEE crypto right now. Hopefully it takes the same path as Bitcoin lol.
Regarding the inflation rate, and whether it's 8% like they say, or a lot higher like some claim: all I know is my own experience, and what it takes to pay the bills.

We've been raising four kids on a single blue-collar income, and my wife has had medical issues, multiple surgeries over the last ten years, probably averaging $10k per year out of pocket after insurance. Money has been tight but we get by. My annual raise has been nowhere near 8%, usually under 3%. We have felt the tightening recently, for sure, especially with growing kids to feed.

Anyhow, if overall inflation was 15-20% per year like some say, I would be facing bankruptcy by now. Just from my own experience, the 8% figure feels more realistic.

I have no doubt that it's higher on some things; for example, I just got a quote on an industrial analyzer at work: $4,800 compared to the same unit I bought just over a year ago for $4,000. Personal living expenses for my family though, have not increased to the same degree.
I've found a lot of really good deals over the past several years, mostly in the classifieds here or on other forums. Recently I did land some good buys on GunBroker. Picked up a B&T TP9 for about $1500 (one of the earlier models, so not compatible with all the accessories), and a Beretta Cx4 Storm for around $450 - both were basically new, and I'm definitely happy with the purchases.

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Back in the 1980s the owner of a local sporting goods store with a gun counter picked up several used S&W model 19 .357 mag 4" revolvers as police department trade-ins at $100 each. However, he didn't really have counter space for them. This was an era in which I wandered into that store about once a week to look at any .357s or 44s he had that I was unfamiliar with. So he tucked three 19s under the counter, and when I next came in, offered them to me for $150 each. I checked them out, then happily bought all three. Placed a local newspaper ad listing a used 19 for 250 firm and sold all three (to three different people)) within 48 hrs. That price represented a good deal for the new owners, and $300 profit for me. Enough to buy about half to 3/4 of my next gun.
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That was an era in which gun counter customers or hang-arounders often assumed any woman standing at a gun counter or handling a gun required their advice. I take a men's medium glove size and have powerful hands and arms from all the gardening and seed processing I do. And I shoot guns with my hands and arms, not my genitals. But I'm a polite gentle person. So I would quickly but gently end any streams of unsolicited irrelevant advice starting with I should buy a .22 or something smaller or lighter with "I like .357s and .44s," and a happy grin.

Not even once in my life have I had a gun store owner or gun counter clerk assume I was ignorant about or unfamiliar with guns. They generally offer advice only to those who those who dont know what they want or otherwise profess ignorance. Even the first time I've been in the store they just hand me what I ask for, watch carefully as I immediately open and check cylinder and gently press it back into position, point the gun in some safe direction without sweeping anyone, and ask permission to dry fire it. Then they breath a happy sigh of relief when they see that I'm not going to handle the gun irresponsibly or damage it, as they do with any new customer. Its usually the not-very-knowledgeable gun-store-hangers-on who specialize in giving unsolicited advice to presumed beginners. More experienced gun people know that women shooters exist and can also tell that you are familiar and responsible with guns by watching you handle one for just a few seconds.
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About six years ago I bought a used CZ 512 semi auto in 22 magnum for $350. No dings or scratches on the wood stock. It's completely reliable and very accurate. It doesn't just make holes like a 22LR; soda cans at 100 yards just explode and the cans are ripped apart.
Yes sir, H&R Topper M158 in 20ga. Got it from a great member here on the forum too.
Right on. Still sportin' the full choke, or did you open it up?
I ask because I have an 088 Topper in 20 ga. and when I had the gun fixed, I asked them to open it up to modified (was Full) and the guy noticed that the choke wasn't made quite straight, so when he drilled the barrel, he made sure to correct that.
The gun's a real good shooter now.
Best deal I ever arranged for "somebody else" was a like new Ruger-5.7 pistol for $1.

The seller was being forced by another person to sell it. I did not feel good about the purchase.
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Back in the late 70's I worked for a horse trailer builder who built beautiful trailers but was a lousy business person. He ran short at payday and offered my a rifle for the $150 he owed me. I looked at the rifle, a Husqvarna Featherweight in .30-06 with the "Mannlicher" stock and accepted it.
I took it to a local gunshop to get scope bases and the guy behind the counter offered me $400 without looking down the barrel. I declined, and have hunted with it ever since.
In the late '80's, I had an FFL and found a rifle at BiMart that was being closed out at a price way below my cost from distributors like Davidsons or Lipsey.
I originally bought it to sell, as it was a Ruger, which I looked at skeptically because of a friend's M77 in .243 that we could not get to group better than 4".
The rifle from BiMart sat in my safe for a year or so. My FFL was expiring, so I decided to keep it. I took it to the range and found it to be extremely accurate.
M77 RDZ in .30-06, my other hunter.

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