The International Man

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The International Man is a book written by American free market economist and serial investor Doug Casey. Originally published in 1978 by Alexandria House Books of Alexandria, Virginia[1] it was intended for an American audience[2] and display advertisements promoting Casey and the book were placed in many newspapers. The ads called Casey a prophet and compared him to Bernard Baruch.[3] The book was republished in Rhodesia and gained an international audience.[citation needed] More recently the themes of the book have been revived in an online enterprise promoting expatriation.

Rhodesia history and republication[edit]

At the time it was written and published, the "Rhodesian Bush War" was raging between the predominantly-white Rhodesian government and the predominantly black rebel groups of both ZANLA, the military wing of the Zimbabwe African National Union and ZIPRA, the military wing of the Zimbabwe African People's Union (ZAPU). As of 1978 there were only 270,000 residents of European descent and more than 6,000,000 native Africans living in Rhodesia, creating a situation in which a white-minority government controlled a black-majority at a ratio of 22:1.

In early 1980, as independence loomed, it appeared that the government was likely to be replaced in a federal election by a predominantly black party that was required to give "assurances" to then leader of the government Ian Smith that whites would be allowed to stay in the now renamed Zimbabwe.

Seeing the writing on the wall, many white families prepared to leave the country pending the results of the election. Casey was in Rhodesia at the time and felt that sections of the white population were exploring the possibility of leaving their home, so he convinced a local publisher to republish his book for the local market. It ended up being the bestselling book in the country's history.[4]

In 2010, Casey wrote a report which described the situation at the time...

The International Man is long out of print, of course, and only available through used bookstores and finders (including While I’m obviously biased, it’s actually still an excellent read, although the world is a different place and I’ve learned a few things since 1976. The book was directed to Americans, but found a fairly broad international market – becoming, among other things, the biggest-selling book in the history of Rhodesia. That, in and of itself, provides a bit of an object lesson in how things can change, I think.
When I first went to Rhodesia in 1978, war was still raging, but I was able to find an entrepreneurial local publisher, Gordon Graham. At the time, there were still about 250,000 people of European extraction among the 6 million population. And it was clear most of them were eyeing the exits and wondering where to go.
Most of the whites were native Africans, born to families that had been in the country for generations, and they felt they had just as much right to be there as the blacks. But when it comes to such things, it’s not a question of rights but of political power. Today there might be 5,000 whites still hanging on. But making what they called “the chicken run” 30 years ago was definitely the smart course. However, few of them had a "bolt hole" elsewhere. In any event, my book flew off the shelves, as people desperately scrambled for alternatives.[5]


One of the key concepts of the book is that in order to enjoy a higher level of personal freedom, one must be prepared to look outside their home nation's borders. Casey espouses the belief that freedom also comes from making the most of financial opportunities.[6] He proposes that the political establishment of his native country, the United States, has "degenerated nearly to the level of every other modern state", which is "inevitable given the nature of government".[7] He believes that the best way to protect oneself is simply to free himself of an aggressive government by expatriating or preparing to do so by employing knowledge to make the right decisions should eventual formal expatriation be required. Much of the content of the book is devoted to those looking to expatriate. Casey discusses opportunities available to those who head outside their borders and the content of the book is broken up into primary parts:

  • Part One: Your Personal Freedom Around the World - A discussion on how to measure and identify truly free places in the world, a review of passports, citizenship and visas, as well as a discussion on political treaties and topics related to it.
  • Part Two: Your Financial Opportunity Around the World - A discussion on international real estate, money, banking and foreign exchange issues, how to do business abroad, details on working abroad, and tax considerations.
  • Part Three: Countries to Consider - The remainder of the book is dedicated to identifying specific countries that may be of interest to readers depending on their stated goals and reasons for considering internationalization.

The International Man Project[edit]

Even though The International Man was first written more than 30 years ago, the message remains timely, especially since the crash of 2008 and the stalled recovery in much of the developed world and especially in the U.S.[8] Predatory government practices such as the monitoring of private citizens communications[9] or misuse of the provisions of The Patriot Act[10] by government officials is creating an urgent need for liberal-minded citizens to plan a bolt-hole. For that reason, in 2011, was launched as an extension of the work Casey started in his book but with one notable difference. Using the connective power of the Internet, the project is not restricted to one person writing about the world but is rather "a real-time global network of freedom-seekers, investors, adventurers, speculators and expatriates looking to live an international lifestyle."[11]

From a content point of view, the project tackles the different areas of internationalization that are first mentioned in the book and expands on them in-depth. The site features articles and commentary not only from Doug Casey, but also from other members of his team at Casey Research, plus individual contributors from around the globe.


  1. ^ The International Man, Title Page, Douglas R. Casey, Alexandria House Books, 1978, ISBN 0-932496-09-1
  2. ^ The International Man, Page 2, Douglas R. Casey, Alexandria House Books, 1978, ISBN 0-932496-09-1
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^
  5. ^ On Getting Out of Dodge, Douglas R. Casey, The Casey Report, Volume III, Issue 1 / January 2010
  6. ^ The International Man, Page 1, Douglas R. Casey, Alexandria House Books, 1978, ISBN 0-932496-09-1
  7. ^ The International Man, Page 2, Douglas R. Casey, Alexandria House Books, 1978, ISBN 0-932496-09-1
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ link:

External links[edit]