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Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Best Defense

The Outdoor Channel has a lot of interesting shows on it. Hunting is a part of a lot of preparedness planning and you can learn a lot about hunting from The Outdoor Channel. One show they have might surprise the preparedness minded community too, they have a show on preparedness!

The Best Defense is hosted by Michael Bane and over the last couple of years they have moved the show to survival/preparedness segments. Water filtration, food storage, defensive shooting, weapon choices and bugging out have all been topics covered.

The show is run several different time slots on Wednesdays. If your cable system offers The Outdoor Channel I recommend you check out a few of the shows and see if you don’t want to add watching The Best Defense you your list of prepping options.


Monday, July 25, 2011

Survival Questions

Survival Questions

Has anyone ever heard of Bright Fuel? I made some phone calls last week looking for white gas. One place told me they sell Bright Fuel to the Amish in the area instead of white gas. It works the same according to the guy on the phone. $4.65 a gallon, which is way cheaper than the $9.95 a gallon for Coleman fuel. The drawback for me is that it is half a state away and the smallest unit I can buy is 55 gallon drum. Based on the figures I have been able to come up with, my guess is that 25-30 gallons will last around a year for my family. It would be nice to have a 55 gallon barrel for trade and charity, but it also makes my family a target for those that want what I have stored so they don’t have to pay for it. Next time I am at my retreat/cabin I will ask the Amish in the area where they buy there white gas. I should just e-mail them…

I read a short blurb in the Parade Magazine about life in Zimbabwe. One of the “rules” that was passed by the dictator was that no one was allowed to plant a garden. It was felt that a garden would hurt the economy since you would be buying less food. In that country $4 US will get you 10 million dollar notes. You have to wonder several things at this point. If they passed that rule here, how would you hide a garden? Pot growers might be able to give some ideas here. How would that rule effect your survival plans if it was against the law to garden?

We all know we all read almost all the same blogs and magazines. Face it; we all see the same names mentioned in the comments. It is great we are a “close” community. Have you noticed that some/many of the sites have come up with different ways to produce food post SHTF? They are all good ideas too. Everything from smelt fishing, dumpster diving, hunting, trapping, gardening, and learning to live off the land. With so many different ways it just might be that we might not keep bumping into each other while getting the food we need.

Have you priced gas cans lately? I was in one of the big box stores the other day and saw that 5 gallon cans have jumped up to near $15 each. I asked the guy behind the counter why and he told me that it was because of the new law in California. The new cans are “spill proof”. A buddy of mine told me with the new push down nozzles that people are spilling more gas and bending tanks and equipment trying to fill them. When I told the guy behind the counter I was glad I had a bunch of the old gas he told me to “hold on to them, they are like gold”. I had been buying them at garage sales and flea markets over the last few years, cleaning them up and filling them. My gas storage is not near what I want, but at least I will be able to pour it into my truck or tractor as needed.

Am I the only one, or do you too have the feeling that the S hitting the Fan fluctuates? There are times I feel that I have mere days before something in going to bust loose and then things settle down and the S seems awhile away. I still am trying to get my priorities squared away as soon as I can so it will not matter, but I am sometimes surprised that the stress ebbs and flows.

This question comes up every time there is a spike in the price of gold and silver. Is it better to sell off junk/scrap gold and silver with the prices high and turn that cash into survival needs like food and ammo? I read some place that it is the junk stuff that barters best in a collapse. As much as I would like to take all the bracelets bent rings and other precious metal items and turn them into a pile of Mountain House food or cans of ammo, I wonder if I am better served having small trade/barter units of precious metals?

I did an experiment the other week. I sent my brother in law an e-mail giving him a SHTF scenario and asked him to list what items he would grab from his house if he had to bug out of town and come live with us at the farm. My brother in law is not totally survival minded, but he is not against the idea of having some plans either. I figure my brother in law is one of the people that will show up post SHTF. Giving him this exercise will open his mind a little and give me a chance to send him a priority list of stuff to bring, just in case. This might be a way to get your “maybe show up” people to start thinking about what to bring instead of just showing up. Tell them you are working on an article for the web so they will respond.

I just want to throw these out there and see if I can get some help puzzling them out.


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Duplicate Supplies

How and why we have seconds, thirds and more of supplies is sometimes a mystery. I mentioned a few entries ago that I had a shovel and matches in every out building. I did not go out and buy three or four shovels and purchase a load of matches just have one hand. Those items grew slowly over the years. One of the shovels I have has a broken handle. It was being used to pry on a rock or stump and the handle cracked. My father glued it back in place and then wrapper the handle with some wire to strengthen the crack. As long as we only use it in the field were having looser soil to work that shovel works fine. The other shovels have arrived on the farm from various sources. I think one came home from a farm auction as part of a group of stuff my Mom bought. Another came from my Grandfather’s place after he passed away.

The Special Forces teach the philosophy that “two is one and one is none”. Having back-ups are important in most aspects of life. When we find ourselves in that future SHTF situation having extras of any supply might turn out to be a life saver. I might be able to trade extras for items I didn’t think I might need.

I am not suggesting that as a prepper you need to have duplicates of everything nor am I suggesting that you go out and start buying double of items. What I am saying that if life presents you with a second of an item at a good price, or better yet, free, it doesn’t hurt to put it away. I for one am a big proponent of duplicate supplies.


Thursday, July 7, 2011

I Will Handle It

I am not general known to write long foul-mouthed rants. Just don’t think they really get the full message across. However, a couple of things have converged to make me want to symbolically take pen to paper and express a concern.

I went to Detroit Metro Airport the other night to pick my youngest son up. Blondie, as he is known in my circle of friends. He is an Infantry officer in the Army. He was home for a few days before he starts a three year billet far from home.

Anyway, as I was waiting for him to grab is duffles and head for the truck a guy in a newer SUV pulled up in front of me and jumped out. As he headed into the terminal I saw his back up lights on. Crap! I sure didn’t want his empty car backing into me but I couldn’t get is attention. Traffic was jammed three deep around us and I couldn’t move. I was trapped!

Trying to decide what to do left me with no more option then I had already thought through. What I did notice was that the back up lights went out, as did all the lights on the car. Double crap! Another one of those new fangled safety things. I hate those #^(*!@%$ things.

I will no longer tell someone their lights have been left on in the car. I am tired of being laughed at with, “Oh those will go out later, IT”S a NEW car”. I saw a car up at Houghton Lake earlier this year with the lights on and they looked like they were dimming but I was dammed if I was saying anything.

Another thing I do not need or want on my truck is having to stomp on the brake to put it in park. Do not let your kids play in the vehicle, how hard it that? I also want my lights out when I turn them off and on when I want then on. I am very capable of deciding that all by myself. I did it for years and didn’t smack something in the dark because I forgot to turn on the lights or have problems walking to the door in the dark and getting in the house. Make it an option for those timid souls that afraid of the dark. Also, I will lock the #^(*!@% doors if I want, I do not want the car doing it when I put it in drive. And that seat belt alarm bell, cram that up someone’s…well you know.

Since my wife doesn’t often read this blog I can admit this out loud, I am a control freak and hell yes that means controlling my lights and driving too. I have great confidence in Wolverine. He has always done well and trusts his gut. My gut tells me now that all this safety stuff is going to make us more enslaved later on. I think I would much prefer to rebuild an old 1960s pick-up and not have all the new safety $#!+ on it. Yeah, before you ask, I hate seat belts too. Actually, when I was younger, like in my teens and twenties I always wore my seatbelt. Once they made shoulder straps mandatory I rebelled and said hell no! Yes, I have gotten seat belt tickets and still refuse to kowtow to some government that insists IT knows more about my safety than I do. I am alive today because I wasn’t wearing a seat belt, twice! I will take care of Wolverine thank you very much.

Part of what started this rant is a commercial from some TV show that asked what I would do if I saw someone doing this bad thing. My answer is not a damn thing; I do not want to get sued. Why would they purposely put people in a position to have to act? If they did that to me it would be my last effort to jump in and help anyone. I hate bullcrap and that is what that is. Makes me wonder if the guy in Toledo a few weeks ago that jumped in front of the car trying to escape after the passenger hit someone and got dragged to his death was trying to do the right thing or get on TV. (Just a rant, he did the right thing and died for it, a tragic shame.)

I am one of those people that wants to keep control of things in his life. I do not turn things over to others to handle, period. I do not use electronic banking and do not own a debit card of ATM card. I go to the bank when it is open. If I screw up and miss getting my money, MY FAULT! I don’t need or want twenty four hour access to my money. A lot of preppers are that self-reliant kind of folk that understand my rant and just might feel the same way. We need to start telling the people in government that are trying to help us to butt out, we will handle it. As for me, I will handle my problems and safety, I trust me so much more than others.


Friday, July 1, 2011

Alert Today Alive Tomorrow

I was flipping through the channels looking for a good western the other day and I spotted this movie listed. The title caught my attention so I looked at the guide and found that this was a Civil Defense (CD) movie made in 1956. The main crux of the movie was to get the people fired up to volunteer for either the CD or Red Cross so they would be ready to help out when the H bomb hit.

I watched it twice, missing a lot the first time through. Like I missed the part about “pressing into service” any one of several items that the government might need to use. Ham radios were one of the items mentioned. I hear confiscated when they say pressed into service.

The film was shot in Reading, Pennsylvania and showed some of the locals going through various phases of training. First Aid was pushed. The projected figures from the film stated they wanted 3000 people out of every one hundred thousand trained competently in FA. They were training motor bike clubs to be messengers and Auxiliary Police. Fire suppression was also a big concern; the most civilian casualties in WW2 came from fires caused by bombing.

Most of what the film covered was a lot of the same items covered in the modern CERT classes. When I lived in the city I took CERT and later became a CERT instructor. It is good training and helps you stay more self-reliant in the event of a catastrophe.

Jay Bonafield produced the film for the RKO-Pathe company and it was only a little over a half hour long. If it shows back up on your Turner Classic Movies you might want to watch it and see how far prepping has progresses since 1956. I originally thought it might have bomb shelter building and that sort of stuff but still it was interesting to see some of the roots of making some of us more prepared.

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