Preview 1/Chapter 1: The Beginning

One glorious afternoon on the first of April several years ago, with America just getting started on another War and everyone demonstrating their patriotism in the most pagan ways, a simple American citizen by the name of Rudy J. Swingle happened to be down at his favorite watering hole, The Buzzard’s Roost, innocently starting on a third pint of his favorite hoppy ale. A television screen in a corner of the bar was turned on to a news show and there was a lot of talk about the economy being “depressed” and “sluggish” and even “slumping,” “staggering,” and “spluttering.” The chattering heads on the show were giving the President a lot of flak for not being more of a booster for it, which they argued was one of the primary duties of his elected office.
           “That’s right,” Rudy said to the man sitting next to him at the bar who was passed out with his head resting on an open newspaper, a small pool of drool forming on a crossword puzzle he’d been working on regarding the pious Christian lives of the Founding Fathers. “That’s right,” Rudy continued undeterred, “the country’s at War again after all, and when you’re at War it’s never good to have economic problems and unenthusiastic remarks about it from the Commander in Chief on top of everything else. Not that I know any better, but it makes sense to me that the President’s job is to cheer on America no matter what’s happening.”
            Suddenly the words “U.S. consumer indicators” flashed through the air, and though Rudy had heard those words many times before without ever giving them the slightest thought, this time something clicked. Other words followed: “two-thirds of U.S. economy dependent on consumer spending,” “individual consumption vital engine of economy,” “consumer trends drive nation’s health,” and so on. Perhaps it was the context they were phrased in, or maybe at that particular moment Rudy’s mind was as fertile as a newly plowed field in the spring and so receptive to them. At any rate, what can only be described as an epiphany occurred to Rudy then—and as is the case with all great epiphanies that have happened to people throughout all time, he suddenly found himself sitting wide-eyed in a new world. He was still in The Buzzard’s Roost of course, but now the machinations of the whole civilized world, that is to say the economic world, always a profound and obscure mystery to him, was made clear as an unmuddied stream.
           “Happy horses!” he realized with surprise, “we live in a consumer culture!” Corollaries to this startling new idea ricocheted through his mind like a mighty pinball shot—when people buy more things, companies sell more things, and the more people buy, the more companies sell, and the more companies sell, the more production rises, and the more production rises, the more people work, and the more people work, the more money they have to buy the things they need to buy to keep the economy going so that everyone can keep working and consuming over and over again and on and on in a perfect cycle—also, things must be made to fall apart, so that people have to keep replacing them, and, more importantly, for the economy to keep growing, people need to buy more and more things, newer and more improved things, faster and faster all the time! And thus the need for government institutions to monitor consumer activity and guide and nurture the economy, and for big corporations to control the media and let fly a relentless barrage of titillating advertising to coerce and bamboozle people to feel that they really need to buy more things! The whole artifice and simple structure of it suddenly lay bare-naked before Rudy’s wondering eyes and his mouth watered at the sight. But then another thought began to take shape in his mind, and with growing anxiety Rudy saw that this great economic scheme had a downside too, and that was the grim inexorable truth that if this rabid consumption by American consumers were ever to cease, it would kill the economy and spell the doom of America—and all of her proud history and glorious promise would fade forever from the face of the earth.
      That’s when it dawned on Rudy that he was an enemy of the state—right then, while safely ensconced at The Buzzard’s Roost with his third pint to his lips, to be precise—for the simple reason that he never bought anything! Not a thing! And by not doing so, he was undermining the nation’s economy, putting America in danger, and therefore committing treason! He was stunned. He set his pint down and looked cautiously about at the other patrons. “God help me,” he thought, “it’s come to this at last has it—I’m a traitor to my own country! But can it really be true?” He carefully reviewed in his mind the logic behind this startling discovery but alas! it all seemed ironclad—he lived in a spacious teepee he’d put together out of fir poles that he’d cut and dragged out of the forest and covered with a skin of old paint-spattered canvas drop-cloths that he’d come across at the dump and sewed together using fishing line recovered from the shrubbery down by the river; he’d set the whole thing up years ago on an abandoned piece of property outside of town, behind a screening grove of tall evergreen trees, and heated it by wood fires during the cold months; a little ways off he’d dug a hole and built a little outhouse over it for the discharge of his bodily needs; in the summer he cleaned up in the river, and in the winter he bathed outdoors in a 50-gallon drum filled with water and heated over a fire; his clothes and bedding he got from the town free-box or as gifts, and he never dined out either, preferring his own simple home-cooked meals and the privacy of his own table; fresh water came from a nearby spring and most of the food he ate came from a vegetable garden he’d put in and a greenhouse he’d rigged up nearby; there were also orphaned chickens that he’d adopted and built a little coop for who contributed eggs; seasonal runs of steelhead and salmon still came up the nearby river, and the forest behind the property offered wild edibles year round in the form of acorns, berries, mushrooms, and assorted greens; his neighbors supplied him with homemade breads and pies in trade for a little labor, there was honey from transient beekeepers that passed through needing a hand, and there were plenty of fruit and nut orchards close by to help himself to in season; if he ever had anywhere to go, he either traveled by foot, an old bicycle, or, during the warmer months, by paddling an inner tube up and down the river; he had no dependents, not even pets, except for Pinky, an albino cat that came with the property, but she was feral and lived more or less off of a healthy population of field mice so that he’d never had to buy her any food; and finally, he had no hobbies to speak of, except for birdwatching, and all he needed for that was his eyes and ears and an innate fascination for colorful flying things. In fact, the only thing Rudy required money for was buying pints down at The Buzzard’s Roost, and he got that easily enough collecting the cans and bottles strewn about the roadsides and returning them for their deposits.
            And so with dismay, Rudy concluded that the only contribution he could see that he was making as a consumer to his culture and his country was by buying pints down at The Buzzard’s Roost, and although that was considerable, it was mostly during Happy Hour, and sometimes in trade for swabbing out their beer cooler. He shook his head ruefully, “So it’s true after all, I’m totally off the grid, off the map, below radar, out of touch, out of tune, out of step, and out of the loop. In a word, I’m frugal, and while this may have been a virtue in the past, I can see that it’s certainly unpatriotic now. We’re at War again and it’s time for every man to pull his weight around, and I’m not! In fact, America’s economy is suffering by my very own hand, and so whether I like it or not I’ve got to face the music and admit that I’ve been an aid to the Enemy and a traitor to my own country!”


Check out some of the amazing reviews that are coming in for Rudy Can’t Fail by W. Dipper:

 “In a world where people seriously think about the UNTHINKABLE, this book accepts the UNACCEPTABLE, believes the INCREDIBLE, and describes the INDESCRIBABLE! The result is an absorbing, spirited, and totally THRILLING read!” —Publishers Daily

“...a vivid and GRITTY piece of recent history from the darkest days of American supremacy.”— USA Now

A GREAT gift in an hour of great need!
Columbia Review

“The BOOK OF THE YEAR! Tremendous, enchanting, VIRILE, and INTOXICATING!” — Los Angeles Express

“Rudy Can’t Fail is a PERFECT example of the self-healing powers of laissez-faire capitalism! It demonstrates once again how our FREE-MARKET model of a capitalist economy is RESILIENT against any storm!”
— Richard B. Posner, Chicago School of Economics

“An extravagantly ROMANTIC novel about a man in love with his country! Dipper makes clear that Rudy’s abiding passion is his OBSESSION with saving his beloved America!” — Elizabeth Hatchett, Harlequin Review

“I was staggered! UNPUTDOWNABLE!”
— Chuck Zeppelin, Professor Emeritus of English, City College of Junction City

Rudy Can’t Fail goes up on my short shelf of ESSENTIAL texts…There is something to learn on every page. The sweep and range is without precedent in MODERN biography!”
Librarian Journal

“Rudy musí být Švejkův vnuk skvĕlé! Tato kniha, stejnĕ jako dobrého vojáka Švejka, SKÁLY domu!”
Česká Svĕt Recenzi

“Rudy has become a national CULTURAL SENSATION …He is a solid, down-to-earth soul who just happened to be the RIGHT man with the RIGHT plan at the RIGHT time and we should all thank our lucky stars for that!”
Cleveland Plain Clothes Dealers

“This is a ZESTFUL labor of love about a complex, endearing man who stood at the epicenter of our national epic…the GREAT girdling journey, engendered by Rudy’s particular genius, that he shared with all of America. READ IT!”
— Howard Crumbley, Modern History in the Making

“It's absolutely my new favorite, favorite book in the whole world! It's LIFE-CHANGING for me!”
Oh! Magazine

“I read Rudy Can’t Fail with interest, excitement, and EXHILIRATION! Rudy helps us rejoin the community of American consumers and though the outcome remains uncertain, one leaves this book with a sense of renewed faith!” — Dayton Moonjoy, Kirkus Reviewers

“SUPERLATIVE!...An affectionate look at MIGHTY America’s frailties…the foibles and HAIR-RAISING adventures of Rudy and a whole host of other folks in the contemporary United States!” — Edinburgh Daily Times

“LISTEN my friends, people don’t understand what’s going on here with this book!  I’m telling you to BUY up as many copies of Rudy Can’t Fail as you can and BURN them all before it’s too late!  We need to destroy this menace before it destroys America!” — Rush Limbo

“What a MARVELOUS book. Rudy Can’t Fail is a larger-than-life epic narrative that combines advanced technical planning, high risk, HEROIC leadership, and some hellfire good luck. Rudy Can’t Fail has a truly CINEMATIC glow!”
Entertainment Quarterly

“ELECTRIFYING! A DYNAMITE thriller! Will likely confirm Dipper's position as the best living novelist in the world.” — SLATELY

“Absolutely BREATHTAKING in vision and scope...Dipper has a shrewd take on people, a strong feeling for landscape, and a sense of HUMOR that'll make you laugh till you're red, white, and blue!” — Los Megolopolis Times

“Este libro sobre pinche Estado Unidos de América! La VERDAD detrás del monstruo reveló por fin! Gracias W. Dipper, GRACIAS!” — Diario de Aguascalientes

“An EXCELLENT book about excellence! All fans of Rudy will be in Dipper’s thrall and in his debt…He has made me a big fan all over again!” — George G. Will, Bowtie Dominance

“Endlessly fascinating and REVEALING …Dipper tells you much more about the events of Rudy’s ascendance to hero-dom than you are likely to have read in the newspapers, even if you are an avid fan of newpapers and read them every day!” — San Francisco Chronicler

“Rudy Can’t Fail recalls us to the GRAND old highway of books about lovers and friends, duty and sacrifice, poverty and success and failure, the value of place and how to live with displacement, art and life, yes, yes, yes, YES, all these marvelous motifs growing out of the true story of one man’s UNASSUMING yet brilliant and life-saving journey …absolutely SPLENDID!” — Alan Banks, LA Timely Book Review

“You will keep this book and READ parts of it again and again and again…Each time you enter it you will be in the presence of an American GENIUS!”
— Stanley Groucher, Hands-Free Bicyclist

“MARVELOUS! A book which transforms Rudy’s patriotic act of love into a page-turning SUSPENSE story!”
— Sam Foggarty, Daytona Daily News

“A powerful work, sobering…COMPELLING, and finally just ENJOYABLE as a superbly crafted work of art!”
The Oregonian Review

“For better or worse, this book ILLUMINATES our lives and makes us laugh and cry!”
— Oliver Ballbrass, The Philadelphia Inquiry

“I've read the book an' I'll tell ya honestly that it's interestin' 'cause it's a reality I can understand 'cause I was in it...Rudy's a good little buddy a mine an' it was good to read about him an' his CRAZY adventures 'round 'merica, 'cept for that last part but I guess it just goes to show what a truly FREE people can do in a FREE 'merica that's FREE to do what ya want to do freely, an' I truly respect question.”
— President Minimus

“A HILARIOUS look at the American economy through the TIMELESS character that is Rudy J. Swingle!”

“This is the book a NEW generation of Americans must aspire to! Rudy’s story is unlike anything ever seen before in America or anywhere else…absolutely INSPIRING!”
Central Point Dispatch

“The book of PATRIOTIC love and laughter!  As big and brawling and downright MAGNIFICENT as America!”
Scrivner’s Digest

“Dipper brilliantly and FEARLESSLY channels Rudy’s angst…his loves and passions…his fears and hopes and dreams…his struggles, failures, and finally his crowning SUCCESS! Once opened, you can’t put this book down!”
— Henry Shnuffley,  Men’s Quarterly







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