Survival of the Richest: How the World’s Financial Elite are Preparing for Armageddon

9 Jul

Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

As we normal folks prepare for emergencies, disasters and the like, I was curious as to how one might approach this should “money be no object.” I myself have never had that problem, when cost was an afterthought, not a concern. But there are those that are born to or succeed to a point where this is their reality and in such Daniel Williams brought the following to my attention.

I for one found it fascinating, not just for the content and presentation but for the reality that if the EOTWAWKI, SHTF happens some of the “Golden Horde” is going to be its own little fiefdom, replete with private armies and weapons you only see in the movies. Another consideration to take into account as we all try to survive.

If it demonstrates anything it clearly shows that being rich and successful does not mean you are not just as flawed as us little people.

Since The New Yorker unveiled the doomsday survivalist strategies of the super-rich in 2017, the planet’s most monied men and women have proceeded to amp things up.

And you can’t fault the scope of their ambition as they look to inter-planetary escape, de facto states and even immortality to evade the collapse of our planet and the revolt of its stinking, heathen masses.

As such, the content team at Loanable have created an infographic which shows the freshest, weirdest and most popular ways the master’s of the universe will side-step doom should a catastrophe topple the natural order.

Mars Biospheres

Do you believe this better for mankind than to become extinct?

It is possible this dilemma will come to pass. Because what if Musk musters only a few thousand survivalists to colonize the red planet? It will be their duty to spread life on Mars.

Musk’s recent pledge to bring Pizza Hut to his biospheres also extends to some of The Hut’s industry rivals, so his Spaceship X survivalists will see out their days with a heady mix of fast food inside a giant greenhouse with an anti-gravity chamber on hand. Should the world end, some will perhaps consider that an upgrade on our current form of civilization.

Laser Eye Surgery

To prepare for post-nuclear melt down and martial law being unable to contain the baying mobs, then first things first. You absolutely, positively, need to pre-emptively correct the plus 1.2 vision in your left eye, right?

Because this is what Steve Huffman would have us believe.

And if you can’t get round to laser eye surgery before the world goes to hell, then you must face down the existential threats by stockpiling contact lens solution instead.

And who am I to deride Huffman and his survivalist priorities? This man who is the brilliant, billionaire, founder of the “front page of the internet” as against a glib content creator, sitting in pajamas in a tiny basement flat, with pieces of peppermint immovably lodged in between his teeth?

Private Armies

The private standing army is the essential end-of-the world accessory for the financial overlord. And what really matters is how big your force of mercenary soldiers is compared to the next man’s.

In this spirit, a number of American survivalist billionaires recently met in secret in Switzerland – with the size of their squadrons top of the agenda. After all, what’s the point in accruing billions of dollars if you don’t have a system in place to protect it from the antsy hoi polloi when the world is in peril?

But if food and water and law and order are in short supply, and hyper-inflation kicks in as it typically does during extreme crisis, then subordinating one’s troops becomes a real issue.

And whereas in the past, the very rich could trade Givenchy, Chapaud and furs for loyalty, today’s fiscally elite survivalists are largely austere, righteous and lacking in ostentatious possessions (other than, ironically, their anti-armageddon accouterments) This means they’ll be faced with the futile task of trading stock in solar powered hectares in Arizona for the fading loyalty of their soldiers.

Food Mountains

Instead of posing the tired question of what would be your last meal before you die, we can instead ask what’s the best meal to have when the planet dies?

And on this front, survivalist food kits are a multi-billion dollar business. They are also a great leveler: rich and poor alike will typically be reliant on the same, boring types of emergency food: cereals, tinned fruit and vegetable and freeze-dried produce.

Many of the survivalist food kits, though, do offer charming, unexpected flourishes such as the hand wipes provided by leading emergency food kit manufacturer, Gear Hungry. After all, it’s bad enough having the world end before your very eyes without also having to deal with pesky, sticky fingers from your mini-pack raisin and sultana mix.

Survival Condo Projects

Luxury living inside a former nuclear bunker is a special pitch for special times. This form of subterranean existence is perfect for the super rich survivalist who isn’t grandiose or romantic enough to set their sites on living in space.

The full luxury, doomsday units in Wichita Falls, Texas can be yours from around $3 million USD and they will allow 75 people to outlive the real world for up to 5 years.

There is also a special, organic hydroponic and aquaculture facility which is THE place to get your hands on luxury survivalist produce. This means that when the general public run out of food and start eating each other’s radio- active flesh, you can dine on carefully cultivated matsutake mushrooms, saffron and albino sturgeon procured from the Sterlet fish being farmed in the sea water tanks.

The Wichita Falls condo units also offer a further, rich blend of banal and apocalyptic features. So you can enjoy “Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical air filtration” alongside the “Washer and dryer in each unit”. And as well as the “Command & Control Center” you will find “Full kitchens with High-end stainless appliances” lest you endure a nuclear fall out with the added indignity of not having a sashimi-grade cutting knife.

The Doomsday Clock

The time of the clock (which gauges how close the world is to catastrophe) is governed by The Board of Atomic Scientists whose numbers include a dozen Nobel prize winners and experts in various fields.

As well as the present day, the only other occasion the Doomsday Clock was as far gone as 11:58 pm was in 1953 – after the Soviet Union and the U.S had developed and tested “H-Bombs”.

So it doesn’t look good for us then.

It might, perhaps, be said, though, that The Board of Atomic Scientists a doom- laden lot. The earliest time they have ever recorded was 11:43 pm in 1991, after a pact between Russia and the U.S to reduce nuclear arms.

Which means we’ve never been more than a figurative 17 minutes from the end of the world. And this begs the question of what insane level of utopia we’d have to attain to make it, say, 08:27 am?

New Zealand

Many New Zealand media outlets reacted with anger to vast parts of their beautiful country being sold to over a dozen Silicon Valley billionaires. Presumably, it was more irritating still, though, when James Cameron started buying up land there.

All of the above contributed to a change in the law in 2018, restricting non-citizens’ right to buy property in New Zealand. This can be side-stepped, however, by acquiring permanent residency if $7.5m USD is invested in the country year-on year after an initial outlay.

This forms part of a bigger picture of “passport collecting” amongst dozens of the world’s richest survivalists. Because as well as allowing them to find political and economic safe havens, multi-citizenship is the ultimate keeping-it-classy-the hell with-you status symbol; the non-gauche equivalent of the mega-yacht.

Inside the mind of Ray Kurzweil

Eternal life achieved through a downloaded conscience is of long-running intrigue to survivalists, science fiction writers and raging narcissists alike. So let us ponder, then, what it means to exist without bodily movement or sensation for infinity…

…Those billions of years you’d have alone with your biggest regrets. The trillions of years spent with no means of generating new memories. Or perhaps you’d lose your mind and your memories altogether; for there can be no absolute guarantee against that.

So maybe, then, you’d be terrified, trapped and confused ad infinitum. In which case you’d think someone would flip the switch and put out of your misery. Unless you get overlooked in the data base, lost in the system. Forever conscious.

Enjoy it, Ray.

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Modern Minuteman – Big-time Basics

8 Mar

Written by R. Ann Parris on The Prepper Journal.

Beyond individual and small-group home, property, and self-defense, we increasingly hear a call for citizens to stand up as modern minutemen. The term is relatively new, but the idea isn’t.

Many preppers have always expected that at some point, they’ll either be joining a group or family, friends, and neighbors with the need to engage an enemy force of some kind. While some of those expectations come from fictional sources, there are some fairly recent precedents that make a compelling argument for the ability to band together.

Images: Koreatown business owners on guard during the LA riots (L.A. Times); business owners during Ferguson’s riots 20 years later (Riverfront Times).

There are also realistic “what-if” situations where a functional independent force not unlike a ramped-up community watch has reasonable applications, long before we start entertaining way-out scenarios involving EROL troops and foreign NWO invaders.

Before we start really looking at individual skills and basic gear, there’s a few key areas that can make or break the success of a Modern Minuteman. They’re things to account for before we gather our gear to march to our woods and fences, and things to ensure any group we join has considered before we sign on, whether we’re signing up now or later.

First, Understand the Minuteman

No, I’m not going to dissect the myths and truths of yesteryear’s minutemen (although… http://www.revolutionarywarjournal.com/minuteman-myth/). I’m not even going to split hairs between minutemen and the militia of the era.

I just want to point out that a minuteman was – just like today’s reservists and guardsmen and many fighting forces large and small for centuries and millennia before and after them – a yeoman, tapped to fight when needed.

They were first and foremost workers. Not soldiers.

For the greatest breadth of that history – all the way up to the modern eras – most of those yeomen were involved in production and trades/crafts, and much of that production involved foods.

While a pyramid helps start to make that point, they still don’t accurately represent the consumerism and contributions of each group. The stepped versions of trophic/energy graphs start getting closer, but it’s still really difficult to appreciate the magnitudes and exponential’s of input required at each level to sustain a single member of the tier above.

Why am I harping on this opening and seemingly tangential point so much?

Because it’s expensive to maintain all the specialists within a society – any type of specialist, to include part-time and full-time soldiers.

When the American minuteman was born, he was led and organized by landowners and businessmen who were mostly still tied enough to the earth to understand production and man-hours – even the city boys.

Many of our founding fathers and the local militia and minuteman organizers were deeply involved in breeding better crop and livestock varieties for the regions, developing management techniques for timber, and fine-tuning stoves, housing, transportation, and tools to better work the land and make efficient and maximum use of resources.

While they understood the need to fight once letter-writing and overseas discussion trips failed, they already inherently understood the need for a populace to feed itself – especially with supply lines about to be disrupted.

(Fun quickie reads: http://www.edisonmuckers.org/founding-father-inventors/, https://www.varsitytutors.com/earlyamerica/jefferson-primer/agronomist)  

Their citizen soldiers were also deeply tied to production. Even the urbanite craftsmen and tradesmen, the accountants and scholars, were much more aware of their larder needs, and of the seasons – harvests and planting, hunting and livestock, foraging and wood cutting.

They understood time with a powder horn instead of a plow and hammer would impact life.

While it doesn’t get the attention other aspects of the Revolutionary citizen soldiers do, the quote traced back to Napoleon was in full effect:

“Amateurs discuss tactics; professionals discuss logistics.”

He’s not the first, last, or only to emphasize it. Alexander the Great is credited with saying that his logicians were humorless, because they knew if his campaign failed, the supply chain was going to be investigated first.

Antoine-Henri Jomni described logistics as the means through which tactics and strategy could be implemented, and the main factor in creating those strategies and tactics.

Those logistics range throughout training and deployment, from mobility of troops and supplies, to types of supplies and sourcing them. Everyone involved in every step of that process has to be fed and kept shoe’d, rested, and housed.

As Sun Tzu said, “the line between disorder and order lies in logistics”.

(Fun fact: Today’s home canning methods came about due to Napoleon’s logistical challenges.)

The minutemen largely fought close to home, not called away as often or as far as the standing army and militia. The same is likely to be true of the Modern Minuteman. Even so, and even though we’ll presumably be better trained than the Revolutionary minuteman, we’re at a disadvantage.

See, we’re now largely what would have been the exception among those citizen soldiers and their organizers.

We very rarely have ingrained understanding of our larders or household supplies like water and fuel, of reasonable production/foraging yield expectations, or of the logistics involved with outfitting even short-term, short-distance yeoman fighters.

That Needs to be the First Focus.

Whether we expect to stand up in mostly “normal” conditions or during a Big-time Event, get the larder and daily-use supplies sorted. Get self- and home-defense taken care of if you’re vulnerable.

Get basic repairs for water, windows, vehicles, and roofs prepped. Know how to handle common injuries like sprains, burns, and foreign objects in eyes.

*It also wouldn’t hurt to remember how often in history yeomen – right up to today’s irregular/guerrilla/insurgent forces – spend some portion of their time producing food, and start practicing that.

Then spend time and money on the sexy run-n-gun goodies.

Next Step: Intel & Comms – No intel, no comms, no mission.

From the most elite modern warriors to cavemen with bone clubs, we rely on information. Even on a personal level – say, a home intruder – if we don’t know there’s a problem, and what it is, we don’t know that we need to react, let alone how to best respond.

Sun Tzu also weighed in on that front. Importantly, he emphasized honest self-assessment and understanding of the community at large along with accurate assessments of the opposing force.

That self-assessment is enormous.

It factors hugely in choosing when and how to engage. And disengage. And when and how to not engage at all.

Being good at making that call is one of the things that made successful resistance fighters difficult to counter even before the Swamp Fox dove around fences and trees instead of lining up to engage Brits with big “X marks the spot” on their chests. It has continued to run empire-ruling armies ragged in the centuries since.

Images: Brits in the First Anglo-Afghan war, and Russian troops fighting the same never-quite-conquered enemy 120 years and several wars later. 

Whichever extreme we choose for our scenarios – commonplace likely events that occur even today or restoring order or freedom during or after something huge – the Modern Minuteman can expect to be facing larger numbers and-or better-equipped professional militaries, just like the guerrilla and insurgent forces before them.

They, too, are going to rely on accurate self-assessment combined with accurate calculation of both the local community and the enemy to successfully engage.

Images: Italian, South Vietnamese, and Greek civilian home-guard militia and resistance fighters of WWII and Vietnam.

Denying enemy intel on us is also a biggie. After all, they’re using information the exact same way we hopefully are.

Communication Is Key.

Again, it’s “no intel, no comms, no mission”. Without the ability to trickle information both ways, intel does no good. Willing, able parties with the best training and all the gear in the world can be rendered totally inoperable without communication systems.

Those minutemen had to be rallied, remember.

Somebody had to tell them where they were massing, and then somebody had to decide on a plan of action based on available information. Unit and individual assignments and instructions had to be passed.

The most likely scenarios leave phones and texting an option for Modern Minutemen. We also have regular ol’ Motorolas. I’m a fan of SSB-CB for middling distances due to cost, ease, lack of regulation, and the possible ranges without repeaters, but there’s also HAM radio – which will also send texts and email these days – and even field phones from various eras.

We can also make arrangements for a low-tech Twilight Bark https://www.theprepperjournal.com/2017/03/04/radio-silence-communication-without-electronics/,  some of which offer pretty decent ranges if we have line of sight.

For near-area alerts that we should check something like a flag, hobo symbols, or message board system, or to tell neighbors on standby that it’s time to rally or to man their stations, we might also consider things like canned-air stadium squealers and boater’s fog horns.

(Having a variety of grid-down comms systems has all sorts of benefits even if A Big Thing never occurs. It also applies to things that have nothing to do with gun-toters: riding to the rescue for births, warning about fires and rising water or stock-killing loose dogs, saving steps and time to call people in for breakfast, telling neighbors we’re sick/injured, helping each other with planting and harvest…)

The Modern Minuteman

The idea of a fast-response or defensive force citizen soldier isn’t new. Nor is it fading away anytime soon. It’s not just tactics, though, or the gear each individual and team needs to employ them. It’s not even the basic skills and abilities required to engage in a fight.

Before we go whole-hog on the combat aspects of the Modern Minuteman, take some time to seriously game plan the basic tenets of logistics, comms, and intel.

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Prepping Gone a Little Mad

8 Feb

Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

The end of the complacent world where others control their fate is staring the United Kingdom in the face and the stories of their leap into prepping are lessons for us all.

What happened to the Empire upon which the Sun never set? In 1973 they joined the European Union and ostensibly gave up their sovereignty to the bureaucrats of Brussels, the first real “one-world” government experiment. And now that the generations of Britain’s who have never lived without the shadow of Brussels over them have reached their age of rational thought the panic of being responsible for themselves is setting in and we as preppers can take some lessons from their sudden interest in preparedness. BTW, a generation is defined as between 22-33 years, so in the 46 years since they joined the EU they have raised 1.7 generations. Preceding generation have not yet died off and have to be somewhat amused to some extent.

To quote Daisy Luther of The Organic Prepper:

This being Britain, people are not retreating to underground bunkers, as America’s “Doomsday preppers” do, and Britons are more likely to hoard toilet paper than weaponry. But with time running out and negotiations at a delicate point, some Britons are preparing for a crisis that could upend their way of life.

“People are talking about World War II and rationing,” said Ms. Mann, a former midwife. “People have also been talking about the blackouts in the 1970’s, and how power was rationed.”

“This has the potential of being a combination of the two,” she said.

The government of Prime Minister Theresa May dismisses such talk, but its own ministers have published contingency plans for an exit on March 29 without a deal, and for the first time since the end of rationing in the 1950’s, Britain has a minister responsible for food supplies. More ominously, the government has advertised job openings in emergency planning. (source)”

The “(source)” quoted above is the ever truthful pillar of integrity, the New York Times. Ms. Lindsey then goes on to use the the saga of Super-storm Sandy 2012 as an example of how unprepared the people of the Northeast were, and most likely remain (the full text of her article is in the link above.)

As for the British the truth be told they have to stockpile toilet paper because they aren’t actually allowed to stockpile weapons, not even knives in their nations capital and this is for a peaceful transition back to control and sovereignty, not a doomsday SHTF, TEOTWAWKT scenario, but try and tell them that.

The stories abound about seaports suddenly being closed or gridlocked within this island nation that for centuries ruled the Seven Seas. Sprinkle in the normal stories of market shelves emptied, shortages of everything, and the real prospect of an interruption in the convenient life that they are accustom to for a period of time and their reactions become a case study in perhaps a little over reaction, but more a fast-track to beginning prepping. The light bulb above their heads has noted that they have seven (7) weeks and counting with a government that really has no solid planning in place. Note that their government has been more and more omnipresent in their everyday lives than we would ever (hopefully) accept and there is still just under 50% of the population that wants to remain under the thumb of Brussels.

This is not an indictment of the British people who throughout history have demonstrated resilience to hardship that few nations can match, but of generations facing a bump in the night and letting their imaginations perhaps run away with them a little.

The changes will be at the highest level of government, business and trade and trade agreements. This nation, the size of Alabama, has fifteen (15) refineries to keep providing the same products they have been producing since the 1950’s, and fifteen (15) nuclear power generating stations – Alabama has four (4). And with a population of sixty-six million (66,000,000), the same as California and Texas combined, fuel supplies should not be a major concern, or gridlock, or an ingeniously timed invasion from outer space.

Opportunity to Learn 

What it is for us is an opportunity to watch, live, a microcosm of how the unprepared will react and learn from it for our own planning. From now until March 29th, and certainly for the two weeks past that date, the United Kingdom is going to give us a preview of economic change – I predict it, like most other doomsday predictions will have some minor bumps but will mostly go unnoticed or not widespread. Time will prove me right or wrong. But it will show in real time how people react, we will get to see on a small scale the grasshoppers knocking on the ants doors.

As preppers we know that water, food and medical supplies should always be a concern and to that vein we can be encouraged that more and more people in the United Kingdom are actually starting to see this as a safety net for themselves and their families and not as a knee-jerk reaction to any media-fueled hysteria, of which there is plenty swirling around, as their media, like ours, lives in the one-world government camp.

To their credit the United Kingdom never sought to adopt the Euro as their official currency as a part of their membership in the European Union (EU); they secured an opt-out at the Euro’s creation via the Maastricht Treaty in 1992. This makes the separation back to sovereignty so much easier and straight forward. As an aside, I found it interesting that the original countries that started the EU who had a monarchy did not originally adopt the Euro, kept their currency honoring their royals for a period of time. And the Euro, once $1.38 vs the dollar is today $1.14. It will be interesting to see how it reacts to the March 29th withdrawal of the United Kingdom. The British Pound Sterling is valued at $1.30 and how it floats over the transition period will be another trend to watch.

Welcome back to self-determination Beefeaters.

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Canning Jars – Versatility Via Variety

30 Jan

Written by R. Ann Parris on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: Another guest contribution from R. Ann Parris to The Prepper Journal. Size ultimately does matter. If you have information for Preppers that you would like to share then enter into the Prepper Writing Contest with a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies!

Canning jars come in a wide variety of sizes, and two common lid sizes. It’s not a bad idea to go ahead and snag at least some of that variety, because it can give us a lot of versatility. Factoring in our uses, the composition of people we’re feeding, likely situations, and costs can help decide what spread of sizes is most efficient and effective.

Lid sizes can sometimes make or break canning costs.

In some locations, the difference in price between regular and wide mouth lids isn’t significant, as little as $0.03-$0.05 USD per lid. Other times, though, inside the U.S. and around the world, wide mouth lids are as much as 2-3x a regular mouth lid.

Those lid costs can add up fast if we’re doing a lot of canning every year.

Bear in mind the total real costs of canning, including those lids, while contemplating jar investments.

The costs can influence some to dehydrate more foods – not only creating a more compact storage, but also one where it doesn’t matter if something won’t all be consumed quickly. It allows them to use larger jars and fewer lids.

Account for water availability if that’s the plan.

Other homesteaders skip half- and quarter-pint jars – and the extra lids required to can the same amounts of food using those smaller jars – sticking instead mostly to quarts and pints.

That’s fine now, when we have fridges and freezers that make leftovers easy and convenient. In a disaster, however, widespread or personal, our power sources or our appliances can go down. We need to consider if we have persistent snow cover and deep-cold periods, or double-backup power sources, and how many leftovers we’d be looking at dealing with without them.

Balancing the cost (and canning time) of preserving foods in reasonable, readily consumable portion sizes versus bigger jars takes a bit of experience, because “consumable” is situationally dependent. It’s not one size fits all.

Go Big or Go Home

(Personally, I like my home. Just saying.)

It can be tempting to snag half-gallon and gallon jars sometimes, especially if we’re storing dry goods in our jars until we want them for “real” canning.

Resist that temptation. If you can’t resist, go only up to half-gallon jars, and don’t sink the bank into getting a lot of them.

The max size most of us need is quarts.

Exceptions would be if we’re getting bigger jars for free and it’s just another storage container, or if we’re already fermenting and producing significant juice/booze/vinegar.

Many home canners just don’t safely preserve foods in larger jars, especially denser foods. Some won’t even hold more than a quart’s height.

We also usually don’t need bigger jars, even if we’re feeding 12-20 people or more.

Too, they’re fairly expensive. It’s a long-term investment (usually) but “saving” the cost of buying 2-6 lids for pints and quarts to hold the same amount will take several years to pay off.

Another consideration: The more sizes of jars we have to account for, the more “funtastic” our storage area planning will be.

Shelving may not seem like a major factor, but remember: just canning two cups a day per person requires 180+ quarts.

Winging it may be an option for 30 cases of pints so we can eat or share only those two cups a day. Aiming to can two-each of fruits, veggies, and proteins per day – still no carbs, syrups/honey, etc. – bumps that to nearly 550 quarts.

That’s 46 flats of quarts or 92 flats of pints we’re accounting for on our shelves, per person.

And THAT makes the spacing involved with storing those jars something worth actual thought.

Pints, both “slims”, and quarts work well on the same shelving. If there’s room to wiggle quart jars past each other, there’s also usually room to stack half-pints or half- and quarter-pints, in flats or as “loose” jars.

Once shelving is accounting for half-gallons and gallons, too, your choices are to break away from modular shelving, be stacking a lot more combinations, or waste 4+ inches on every shelf that won’t quite fit another layer.

Shorty Jars

Preserving small portions in quarter-pints and mini/sample jars lets us open useable amounts of foods. That can both limit leftovers/scraps and let us dole out specialty items instead of having to consume them all at once. It increases total space used, though, and takes 2-8x the lids versus pints and quarts.

Even so, we might want at least some small jars for spreads, herbs, reduced stock bases, juice concentrates, sauces, and high-value “treats” like low-yielding berries or meats.

Depending on family composition and tastes, they’re also handy for consumable portions of spicing onions, pickled beets, or even regular ol’ salsa and chutney.

Picking Sizes by Situation

Remember: How we can (and cook) now may very well change if we’re removed from or limiting our power draws and refrigeration. Some of us have 3-6 months or more when we could pack old-school ice chests and buckets, sink a bucket/cooler in a cold spring, or let an outdoor cooler be our fridge. For some of us, though, that’s impossible or unreliable.

Without refrigeration…

People anticipating infants/toddlers might stock more quarter-pints (4-5 oz.; 100-125-150 ml) and mini/sampler jars (1.5-3 oz.; 50-75 ml) so they can easily preserve baby food.

(Plan on ordering the teensy-tiny jars, and almost 100% the extra lids for them – they’re rarely in stores. Also, be sitting and try to avoid drinking/lollipops when you do the price check. It’s “eek” worthy.)

Singles and couples will probably lean more heavily on half-pints and pints, especially for meats and proteins, and use quarts mostly for canning heat-and-eat soups or stews, bulky items like potatoes, and some fruits.

For families and groups of 3-8, a mix of mostly quarts and pints is typically going to be most efficient, with some select half-pint jars for things like condiments and portable meals.

Larger families and groups in the 10-20+ person range would focus even more on quarts, although conditions might lend themselves to having some smaller jars available for individuals or pairs.

Totable Portions

Even with families and larger groups that can readily consume pints and quarts of each ingredient at a meal, we may want to snag a few flats of smaller jars. Those half-pints and quarter-pints can facilitate pack-able lunches and overnight-trip meals.

Remember: Modern humanity has been walking away from home and munching a midday meal for centuries, farm hands to loggers. We’ve been taking overnight trips – and eating prepared foods on them – for millennia.

Also remember: Not all disasters are equal.

We could very well have had life as we know it end within a family and be leaning on our food storage and preservation while the world continues around us. In Great Depression or Venezuela conditions, some work is available and we’ll still need to fuel that work.

Even being glass, canning jars are plenty tough enough for a rucksack or daily-carry bag.

They’re heavier than the MRE’s, tins, and pouches of just-add-water foods we commonly use now, but if we’re only carrying 1-2, it’s not an enormous weight suck, especially for “just” a daily lunch.

Right now, Ziploc-type bags and plastic storage containers are inexpensive and prevalent enough to make them more common for multi-day packers and daily lunches. That wasn’t always so, though, and canning jars do still see use for the latter.

In a personal or widespread disaster that limits our disposable income or disrupts normal supply chains either through pricing or availability, jars can easily return to being the more common container for daily and multi-day travel foods.

We can set them up a couple ways for our lunches and haversacks.

One, we can water-bath and pressure can small portions, providing a cup of soup, applesauce or fruit, a tub of fish or meat that can be consumed with some crackers or bread, or a bean dish to go with tortillas or bannock.

Two, we can set up simple mixes that we’ll add water to. That can be anything from bannock bread to instant potatoes, rice, couscous, or other small pastas.

Cooking options vary by what we packed and any given day. We can add water early and let them sit in the sun, use water we’re boiling fresh, or use a small pan or large mug as a double boiler to heat foods inside the jars.

Versatility Adds Resilience

Being able to adapt to situations increases our self-reliance. A variety of canning jar sizes can provide that in many ways.

Even so, start with the most economical and most common sizes. For many of us, that’s going to be pints and quarts, with only the odd smaller or larger jars mixed in.

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What if There are No Cooler Heads?

23 Jan

Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

I tried to see if someone is credited with originating the term “cooler heads will prevail.” I found no one credited but it has been around for quite awhile. George Washington is even quoted in the meme below as saying “Truth will prevail”:

But I found that on the internet, and we all know that to be an impeachable source. And of course the internet is littered with pundits using the term for all sorts of situations, all with a general underlying theme, either the lack of willingness to compromise and move off their own dead center, or a way of saying “we’ll figure it out” without offering any compromise, any step closer to resolving the issue. A disingenuous delaying tactic common in our political system.

And now we find ourselves at the beginning of 2019, nearing the end of January and our government in a partial shutdown since before Christmas. Partial having various meanings. If you are the elected Democratic Speaker of the House, and third in line for the Presidency, it means taking ninety three (93) friends and mostly family on an extended tour of Europe and Asia not only at taxpayer expense but using as your servants members of the United States Air Force and their assets while they remain unpaid. One with no accountability to anyone.

If you are in the military, or Border Patrol, or ICE or an air traffic controller or TSA agent it means going to work as usual without getting paid. It means at a minimum watching your credit score drop and your supplies dwindle. One where your are accountable to everyone and subject to the rules not only of your employer but to those with whom your have entered into contracts with, such as your mortgage holder, credit card companies, city services and utilities and on and on.

So What if Cooler Heads Don’t Prevail

We all know the above, apologies for droning on the media mantra, but now the media has started to talk of their predictions for the results of certain other actions, and this is a little unsettling. As we know those in positions of power feed the media things they want to be “news” and the stories of impeachment not only of a sitting President but of members of the SCOTUS were openly broadcast on the alt-left Media, CNN and MSNBC over the weekend and the network alphabets following up yesterday. Even the mostly defunct print media is on-board and then there are those without filters or controls on the Internet.

While The Prepper Journal is no stranger to the idea of the possibility of open conflict coming to pass, and has posted about it for a number of years:

Did Government Source Provide Clue as to How They would Usher in Tyranny?

How to Survive a Civil War in America

The Revolution will Not be Fought with Rubber Bullet’s

The media has begun to connect the dots (just two of them) from open attempts at impeachment to open civil strife on the streets of America. Rhodes Scholar candidates every one.

The reality of the forces at work here are not to be passed off as simply posturing or playing games. They are playing the long game, to make the unthinkable thinkable. As preppers this is a call to really dig in and review your families options and planning.

There are now thirteen (13) states with implemented Red Flag Laws. The same number as stripes on our flag, original colonies supporting the Declaration of Independence and prosecuting the first American Revolution. The 116th Congress has promised new legislation to prohibit private gun sales and extend background checks against highly suspect government databases, which could now complete the circle by adding the information presented in Red Flag processing. Does one only have to be accused to be entered into the databases? Unknown. The current ATF Form 4773 has not been updated.

How would you answer question 11b of ATF Form 4773 if you were trying to purchase a firearm and a relative had gone to the authorities about you under the Red Flag law?

Could this be the next step in being presumed guilty until proven innocent and with government controls in place to prevent removing the data of false accusations from their databases more daunting than climbing Mt. Everest alone, in winter, naked and with a Sherpa hiding in your backpack.  All it might take is a single vindictive family member, or a police officer, let us not forget the lessons from the last SCOTUS nomination process.

 

So where are the cooler heads? When will they step to the forefront and bring about some semblance of character, statesmanship and compromise for the good of the American people? Can any American voter look to the person they voted for to step up? The Executive Branch has certainly extended the olive branch, opened the door a crack and we continue to wait as the first response was the predictable venom and rejection. The posturing, the media dance, the pandering to the donor/overseer/owner class who have bought and paid for our legislative body for decades, has indeed corrupted our form of government. Is there a better argument for term limits than this? But seriously, how would term limits ever pass in Washington D.C.?  To our peril our founding fathers did not consider a career a serious thing, after all they all worked for their living.

My goal is not to incite or to incense, but to simply follow the money that corrupts completely in our nations capital, and state houses from sea to shining sea. The election of the 45th President has opened the curtain to the people at the controls of the Wizard of Oz. As preppers we are planners, we hedge our chances for survival by preparing for the worst case scenario. We hope upon hope it doesn’t come to pass, we offer an open hand to compromise while keeping our options open and the security of self and family always within reach.

When I was in the military I lived from pay period to pay period, I was 19 and it was really my first away from home life experience. Missing two months pay would have been my personal Armageddon – I was not a field-grade officer or above.

Chicken is a dangerous game when one side has no fear of the other or concern for the innocent bystanders, the collateral as one politician referred to above called her constituents.

Be safe out there, and keep your ear to the wind.

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So How’s 2019 Shaping Up for Hawaii’s Big Island?

5 Jan

Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

This is a disturbing video from this year, in fact this week, in fact yesterday! Well, not really, it is just labeled that way on the internet. It is six (6) months old. The volcano has quieted down enough to where it is no longer news, certainly not as important as what any B-list celebrity tweeted over the past few days on any of a variety of topics. But there are lessons to be learned here still.

While we refer to all the islands in the area as “Hawai’i” the Big Island is the one named Hawai’i. And like anywhere else natural forces directly affect market value and on the Big Island of Hawai’i, my personal favorite, that was happening in spectacular fashion, but again pushed to the back pages or off the news completely by the Media. But for the areas residents I would guess it is still central in their daily lives.

As Preppers we know that there are someplace you simply don’t “settle down” in. The base of a volcano ranks high on my list of those places, especially that of the largest and the most active volcano in the world, one that has been in a sustained eruption since 1986. BTW, other places on my list, the Korean DMZ (though progress is being made there), above base Camp 1 on Mt. Everest, the Israeli border with any other country, within sight of a levee in Louisiana, and most Southwestern border towns. It is my list, though I did mistakenly buy a house once that was about 5 miles downwind from a dairy farm.

Having been to Hawai’i I can attest to the fact that the area is lush, secluded, a true slice of the Hawaiian dream of living on the edge. Spectacular black sand beaches (broken down lava), a blue (deep) ocean expanse that goes on forever, definitely a candidate for “living off the end of the earth” in paradise. But there is no place in the area where you can’t see that giant cone unless you are deep in the ground cover, and the constantly rising steam from the caldera and the lava tubes flowing into the ocean produce a rain/mist that is almost constant.

Kilauea is classified as a “shield” volcano; below are the other four volcanoes that comprise the Big Island of Hawai’i (all the islands of Hawai’i were formed by volcanoes.) The volcano’s are Mauna Kea (MK), Mauna Loa (ML), Hualalai (H), and Kohala (K). These are the largest volcanoes on Earth, though Kilauea is the only one still considered active.

This is truly a place where the earths development and formation can be seen and studied up close, too up close for dozens of citizens to date. And, in case you didn’t know, a new island, Loihi, is building just off the southeast shore of the Big Island. Since it is still 3,000 ft below the ocean surface currently and not expected to break the surface for at least another 10,000 years, none of us need add a visit to it on our next vacation.

If you have followed this over the past 8 months you will notice that, unlike the movies, there are no firemen or fire engines fighting the lava, and for the simple reason that no man-made power on earth is effective against it.

While we all know paper burns at 451° Fahrenheit (F), thank you Ray Bradbury, an open flame from a lighter can be as high as 4,074°F (though butane actually burns at 3,578°F) most magmas are in the range of 1,300 °F to 2,400 °F. So even concrete barriers will fail as concrete cannot withstand exposure to 1,300°F without undergoing severe strength loss and cracking due to spalling (any moisture within will boil at just 212°F.)

But this isn’t about the poor timing or choices of the people who chose to make their homes in Pahoa, HI, but about the destructive natures of volcanoes and the realization that once you make some mistakes, preparing for the inevitable is a really big challenge. It is life on the edge because no one knows when it will erupt next or the severity of the eruption, to include the speed and volume of both the magma and the pyroclastic flow.

So in this case Mother Nature holds all the cards and while others and government services will try and aid, your survival really is your responsibility. None of the roads destroyed are ever rebuilt, the same with the structures and any infrastructure (utility services, water lines, etc.) on (or under) the now cooled lava fields.  Perhaps a new cell tower was erected or power lines rerouted, but they too are now as exposed as everything else to Mother Natures future whims. So in disasters like these your “never coming home again bag” is your BOB and your EDC all rolled into one. (Though I am sure someone sometime used whatever monies they had left after being burned out to get a different slice of paradise in the same area, again with Mother Nature as the landlord with no clause as to when you will be evicted and the new property reclaimed, by fire.)

Your bug-out vehicle here also has to be always ready to go, always, and your escape routes (plural) have to be known and constantly updated as stress cracks like you see in the video can be more than a few inches wide in an instance, and your only indicator that this has happened is that shaking you may have felt a few minutes or hours ago, or that you didn’t feel due to the soils composition as tremors in the range of 3.8 or less on the Richter scale will most likely go unnoticed in an area with no multi-story buildings and trees constantly swaying in the trade winds.

Most will draw the conclusion that since it is no longer making headlines that it is all good, back to the normal rhythm of life in paradise, at this one end of the earth. The lesson here is that the normal rhythm here is abnormal by most standards, and requires constant planning, preparation and analysis of the situation 24/7/365. Having a little too much Hawaiian Punch on New Years Eve could have been a problem had Mother Nature not slept through it. A lesson here for all preppers. that there are places where the Cavalry is not coming to save you and yours.

Science in this area, as it pertains to warnings and predictions, is constantly improving but always seems to be few paces behind, or is it? Is it science or is it lawyers and insurance companies and real estate companies and developers and their threat of litigation in lock-step with government regulations/controls/laws that keeps the employees of a private, state or government institution from stepping up and issuing timely warnings? Timely being the key word here. Does all of the above delay the accomplishments of science? Review, rewording, review by legal counsel, final drafts, approval chains almost at infinitium, infected with politicians at every link.

Can we discount the possible litigation stemming from a false warning? Property values impacted, people displaced, shelters set up, local businesses shuttered for days at a time and on and on? As preppers we know about all of these and they are a part of the things that make a lot of us prep. Hawaii’s Volcano’s National Park is unique in all the world, a great place to visit, a great place to learn from the locals, in spite of the fact that it is currently shut down over politics. My guess is Mother Nature doesn’t care.

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A Robust, Redundant Escape Plan Starts Today

20 Sep

Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: An article from Dave Henly to The Prepper Journal. Reality if you really want to get off the grid. As always, if you have information for Preppers that you would like to share then enter into the Prepper Writing Contest with a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies!

“The Next Three Days” is a nail-biting movie. It is one of the only movies that I have had to pause and take a break before the end of the film. It was so intense. In it, Russell Crowe is rescuing his wife (Elizabeth Banks) from wrongful imprisonment. I doubt that I would ever have the guts to fight for my family in this manner.

But it does make me think: “Am I too trusting? What would I need to do if (fill in the blank) happened and my family and I needed to run?”

I already practice my survivalist skills on a regular basis. My friends and I often do survival hunts where we hike into the woods and live for 2-3 days off of roots and the creatures we kill. There are few groups (outside of military men) as prepared as my friends and I when it comes to wilderness training. Being able to “go on the run” from an invading country or a personal threat needs some forethought.

Recently, I’ve been prepping my go-to-ground strategy. How could I stay off the grid and go “dark.” I won’t share everything, but here are a few thoughts that I am working through.

Erasing My Online Footprint

This one is the hardest for me. I use the internet to keep track of my friend’s and families’ lives. Granted, the cynic will say “the government already knows everything about me.” But the truth is, they haven’t carefully organized that information until you become a person of interest. Deleting your entire footprints such as images your friends put up, old photos you stored on Picasa (which has been purchased by Google and now they know everything) or Amazon Photos and your old blogs, takes a lot of dedication.

There are no guarantees that it will help, but if there is no digital footprint, you will be harder to trace. It makes it harder for them to find you. If you own a home, it will be difficult to hide your address and be removed from every online database. However, if you are persistent in your removal requests — and you don’t opt-in to email addresses and and other requests for information you will create less to be deleted should the need arise.

Create a Fake Online Persona

Creating a fake online persona is getting easier to do. The first thing is to get a prepaid cell phone number so that you can sign up for email and social media accounts if needed. Then, you can tag photos of your face with this fake name — or hire a photographer on Upwork to take pictures of a model for you. These custom photos won’t flag as being “stock images” and will serve as the persona for your account.

Finally, you need an address. A fake address from fakenamegenerator.com will work. Enter this name and address in as many sweepstakes as you can find. Applying for sweepstakes will help establish your phony persona in Lexis Nexis as a “real” entity. There is nothing illegal about using a pseudonym and fake address for an added layer of anonymity.

Ditch The Smart Phone

Smartphones track everything. We’re pretty sure they listen to everything as well. The smartphone, smart TV and any other “smart” device need to be unceremoniously removed from the house. Ditching the smart devices will help to hide your daily routine and keep you “off the grid.”

Mask Your IP

Your phone is traceable. Your car with the tire pressure sensors? Yeah, those use Bluetooth. They also communicate with the signboards around your town that tell you how far it is to the next road. (You know what I am talking about? The signs that give you travel estimates?) You’ll need to ditch the car.

The challenging thing is that most of our numbers, credit cards and way of life requires digital access. Pay attention to your life and consider what it would take to function without that technology. And then, starting now, you want to begin eliminating everything digital that you can: your laptop, your social media, your smartphone.

Right now, you are leaving a footprint that could be used years later. Little hints, like the sites you frequent and how frequently you go to them. All of those things are being logged in case they need that information in the future. Kept under the guise of “tailoring the user experience”, increasing Google Analytics by more targeted advertising based on a users preferences.

Minimize that Footprint. Go Amish.

You will likely still need internet access, so using something like a TOR browser and a VPN can help you create layers between you and the rest of the world. Many websites — such as CNN and Facebook — track your IP. Once your IP has been identified, your natural browsing habits can be used to unmask your other, cloaked, “identities”.

Keeping a low profile is key. There is little to be gained by pontificating online about politics or our favorite survival secrets. Remember that the things we share online today are likely being recorded and will still be accessible 50 years into the future as part of our digital record.

Go Cash

This goes without saying, but cash is about the only thing you can use that is untraceable. Or, mostly untraceable. It wouldn’t hurt to get a side-hustle, now, that pays in cash. That way you can get used to working in cash-only.

You can keep your day job for now, but you’ll have the skill on how to find and retain cash-generating jobs down the road, which will be essential if you end up in a post-apocalyptic scenario.

Prep Alternate Transport

If the crap hits the fan (SHTF) and the country gets overrun by commies or something, you’ll likely want a vehicle — any vehicle — that can get you south of the border. Running is one of my favorite sports. I get up, put my shoes on, and take off running. Every morning. Like clockwork. It’s the one way that I can guarantee myself a baseline of fitness.

At a minimum, you should be able to run 3 miles non-stop. Walking 4 miles per hour is another excellent skill to practice as a long-distance strategy. Now, if someone did not know about my running habit, I could move pretty quickly in that first 5 miles or so. This gives me a major head-start on getting out of an area, even if I have been reduced to moving by foot. The next level of escape might be a bicycle. I only ride about once a week, but I find that my cardiovascular conditioning translates well into cycling.

Leaving a cheap bike chained up at work or a nearby apartment complex can be a great way to create an “escape” route, should the car no longer be a feasible option. Mountain bikes — while slower in the urban environment — are an excellent choice for their robust off-road handling.  You can get cheap bikes from pawn shops or buy something online from a store like Dave’s Cheap Bikes.

This creates a scenario where I could outrun my aggressors to one of several bikes inside my 2-mile “escape radius”. From there, I can grab one of my bikes, and pick up my escape pace.

Create Cache’s

This is a major step in my escape plan. Remember to not bring along any cellular devices when hiding your cache (no trace!). My caches are cash-rich and well-hidden, deep in the wilderness. You’d need a GPS and exact coordinates to find them.

You might add disguises and some power bars in your cache. 6,000 calories would be the minimum I’d put in there. Backup cell phones and bad weather gear are also essential. I also keep some backup inner tubes and CO2 inflators in case my bike has experienced a flat.

There are two caches within a 10-mile radius of my place. These are smaller, and designed to assist me should I be escaping by bike. Then, there are larger caches at the 50, 200, 350 and 500-mile distances from my location.

This creates a logical path for me to “leap-frog” out of town. Ideally, I would be able to purchase a car for my getaway (or hitchhike), but, even if forced to pedal, I could theoretically get from one cache to the next within about 20 hours. Bicycles are powerful escape vehicles. Even when out of shape, it is fairly easy to maintain 8-10 miles per hour. In a week’s time, that could move you 2-3 states away from the folks that want your capture.

Hide Rural

Cameras are everywhere, and Amazon is selling facial recognition technology to the cops, which makes it almost impossible to hide in the urban environment. Living rural is hard. You can’t dumpster dive for what you need, and you risk everyone learning your name. It requires some solid survivalist skills. However, rural hideouts have a good track record. Folks have had success hiding on the Appalachian trail and in communes.

Finding an abandoned farm that you can squat in that isn’t too far from a McDonald’s or Panera’s dumpster that you can dive in would be an ideal plan. Or integrating with a religious sect that is fearful of outsiders. Once you gain their trust, it can give autonomy and community. Heading out west where you can work the crops with the other illegal immigrants and migrant workers can provide you with a source of cash as well as some camaraderie.

Prepare To Be Lonely

If it is just you escaping you can say goodbye to your wife, your kids and anyone you love for at least the next seven years. Ideally, you will want them to declare you to be dead. The authorities — including a scenario of invading authorities — know that heartstrings are the hardest thing to cut. They will be watching those channels for you to surface. You’ve got to let your trail stay cold if you want your freedom.

Hope To Never Need Your Escape Plan

As you prep your escape plan, it is easy to see all of the holes. Ideally, you will never be in a scenario where you need it. But if things ever do go south, a robust plan gives you the ability to take off at a run, and scale yourself into a defensible position that gives you a fighting chance.

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Prepping-Is America Ready?

29 Aug

Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: An article from Blade Johnson to The Prepper JournalIf you have information for Preppers that you would like to share then enter into the Prepper Writing Contest with a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies!

The act of prepping has been around for centuries, the only change has been the technology preppers have come across throughout the years. From the ancients to the present day indigenous peoples have been storing food and supplies to survive. Since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the act of prepping has skyrocketed. There were many mistakes made during this natural disaster to include mistakes made by the government. Given the amount of lost lives following the storm as well as the shortage of food and water immediately after, Americans have begun storing their own preparations to ensure their survival. A prepper has at a minimum ten basic items when they begin to prepare but many go much further than those ten items. Prior to Hurricane Katrina as well as today there are many Americans that feel prepping is unnecessary or a waste of money, but a prepper would say differently. As you will learn, prepping goes back generations, involves many different scenarios, and is done on many different scales. America has failed to prepare to survive in the past, and many Americans still do so we will look deeper into how to fix this problem and why those that do prepare do what they do. Keywords: Prepping, survival, disaster, preparedness,  emergency.

Prepping: Is America Ready?

According to Tom Perry of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, “The need for preparation is abundantly clear. The great blessing of being prepared gives us freedom from fear” (Perry, 1995). It seems more and more Americans are losing their lives when a disaster strikes due to being unprepared. American families should be more prepared to respond to natural disasters that are likely to occur in their area in order to ensure their survivability. It may be unclear to some by now what a prepper is, so to fully understand what will be discussed someone must first understand who they are.

A prepper can be a man, woman, child, or family that has seen history and the types of disasters that have occurred and has begun stockpiling items to allow themselves to be safe if these events occur. When starting out most preppers rely on the basics such as food, water, ammunition, and weapons in order to remain in their home when disaster strikes. While many view preppers as crazy people or someone that simply stores unneeded provisions, preppers are simply wanting to ensure their survival. While many believe an emergency and a disaster are the same thing there are slight differences. An emergency is a sudden or unforeseen combination of circumstances or the resulting state that calls for immediate action (Emergency, n.d.). A disaster is a sudden calamitous event bringing great damage, loss, or destruction (Disaster, n.d.). There are many situations preppers use as their reasoning for being prepared such as economic failure, acts of nature, political upheaval, solar flare, Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP) to name the most common ones. All of these situations are likely to occur at any time so remaining prepared at all times as Tom Perry stated allows us to be more in control of our outcome and lessons our fear.

Disaster preparedness should never distract a person from meeting life’s other needs and responsibilities (Bradley, n.d.). While prepping should be heavy on a prepper’s mind, family and friends as well as work should be most important on anyone’s mind. No matter the situation, emergency, or disaster occurring there are many more important things than worrying about supplies or plans at times when family needs to come first.

History of Prepping

The art or act of prepping dates back centuries. While many of us only have learned about preparedness in recent years, one of the earliest stories known referring to the topic is the story of Noah’s Ark. While many know not the story of Noah a brief background shows the Bible states:

“11 Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. 12 God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. 13 So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. 14 So make yourself an ark of cypress[c] wood; make rooms in it and coat it with pitch inside and out. 15 This is how you are to build it: The ark is to be three hundred cubits long, fifty cubits wide and thirty cubits high.[d] 16 Make a roof for it, leaving below the roof an opening one cubit[e] high all around.[f] Put a door in the side of the ark and make lower, middle and upper decks. 17 I am going to bring floodwaters on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it. Everything on earth will perish. 18 But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark—you and your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives with you. 19 You are to bring into the ark two of all living creatures, male and female, to keep them alive with you. 20 Two of every kind of bird, of every kind of animal and of every kind of creature that moves along the ground will come to you to be kept alive. 21 You are to take every kind of food that is to be eaten and store it away as food for you and for them. (Long, 2011)”

Given the story of Noah we can see that although commanded, Noah stored supplies for survival on-board the ark for survival of the coming flood. Given the preparation of food and providing for the animals, once the flood waters receded one year later life was able to flourish once again. While this was an extreme case of prepping, through-out the years, following the same methods and ideas were used throughout history.

Through the Middle Ages, if not for preparing the population would have perished. During the Middle Ages, the cost of feeding an animal in the winter months was so high the animals were usually slaughtered and the meat stored. Prior to the invention of heaters and electricity, wood was also a large product stored away for winter in order to remain warm during the cold months. These practices remained for many years until amenities such as electricity were invented. As technology progressed, while prepping has become easier, it seems fewer maintain the mindset. Through-out the 1900’s preparing was encouraged in support of the war efforts that were ongoing. It wasn’t until the 1970’s when the term “survivalist” was coined and “Famine and Survival in America” was written that preppers gained their negative view (Duff, 2017). Following the term and book being written, the media took it upon themselves to label those that took part in preparing as crazy, racist, and even anti-government which pushed many away from preparing for themselves and the ones they love. Starting in the early 2000’s when the tragic event know today as September 11th occurred, many began to look back into preparing and surviving. While this event started the large rise in preppers it was ultimately Hurricane Katrina and the lack of response by the government that pushed many back into the prepper lifestyle. While the views are not as negative today there are many that still believe those deemed “preppers” are still anti-government and crazy.

Today’s Generations and Preparing

The art of preparing has been around for centuries, it is the technology and generations that have changed. While more widely accepted today, we will look into the modern generations and their preparedness or lack of.

There are several generations we will examine, those around today,  Millennials, Gen-X, and the Baby Boomer. These generations were chosen based on the fact that most generations past these have come and gone. According to a study conducted by Pureprofile, 2000 Americans were surveyed and it was found that an estimated 68 million people, or 1 in 4, recently purchased survival gear due to an election or natural occurrence outside of our control (Doomsday prepper statistics, n.d.). More than 160 million American adults (65.45%) are estimated to have either recently purchased survival gear or, interestingly, are already in possession of survival gear because they always keep them on hand. The remaining 85 million (34.55%) are not preparing for the end of the world as we know it. Of those who report prepping, 36.35% spent up to $400 on survival kits in the past 12 months (Doomsday prepper statistics, n.d.).

Baby Boomers

The Baby Boomer generation are known as those born between the years of 1946 and 1964. This generation range in ages from mid 50s to early 70s and according to the study conducted by Prueprofile, have bought the least amount of survival gear recently. Having witnessed, been a part of, or heard about the Great Appalachian Storm of November 1950, the preparation should be even more relevant now due to age. Being that this generation lived through rougher struggles than most of us, one would think that they would be the most willing to be prepared. It seems as age grows the dependency on others or the government becomes a part of life as well. Or, the gear they bought long ago still meets their needs.

Generation X

The Gen-X generation range in birth years between the early 1960s and the early 1980s. According to the study conducted 31% of the Gen-X population recently purchased survival items. While just slightly behind the Millennials in prepping, Gen-X has been through their share of disasters. Between the early 1960s and 1980s this generation saw disasters such as Hurricane Camille killing 256 people and the 1974 Super Outbreak of tornadoes totaling 148 tornadoes and killing 315 people.

The Millennial’s

One of the top and youngest generations preparing would be the Millennials generation with 38% of them recently purchasing survival items. It is believed most of this comes from the more recent and stronger disasters that have occurred. Being that this generation was born between 1982 and 1993, they have seen horrible events such as the Oklahoma City bombing, September 11th, and Hurricane Katrina.

Having a Plan

Having a plan is among the most important preparations a survivalist or prepper can have. While states, counties/parishes, and cities have Emergency Action Plans (EAP), having one for the home is just as important. These EAPs allow the community and surrounding communities to know how response will occur given a particular disaster as well as allowing the citizens to gain the knowledge of what they should do given a certain type of disaster.
A part of having a family EAP is to allow the family to know and understand what they need to accomplish in an emergency situation. These plans need to include all members of the family especially if the plan includes children, special needs, and the elderly. When these participants are included into a plan it is likely there will be more precautions needed to be taken such as extra medications, oxygen, or equipment. Coming from a special needs parent personally, there are many added stresses and items needed to prepare for yourself and someone with special needs. From a personal view, a created binder with a family EAP, copies of all important documents, and information about my child with special needs was added to ensure it is a grab and go type situation if evacuation is forced upon us.

Recently in the news it was shown that a Category 5 hurricane will strike the islands of Hawaii, but what is worse than just the storm hitting is the lack of preparedness. The news stations were showing local consumers piled into a store buying any and all necessary items to survive the storm that is coming. While this is one way to prepare, having the items already available prior to a storm and not going after items last minute allows for a less stressful personal environment and more time for last minute preparations such as boarding windows. Having friends living in Hawaii and knowing people from the islands, questions were asked about how prepared they were. After asking more than 20 friends, the conclusion was gathered that most wait until the last minute or they know there is no escaping disaster to gather supplies. There were also many that stated the government would help them after the storm, so instead of relying on themselves they are relying on someone else.

Supplies

Supplies and supply lists are never the same nor do they ever have specific items a person should store. While all lists are suggestions it is ultimately up to the person taking preparing into consideration. Regardless of the list a prepper finds or a YouTube video they watch there are normally ten basics everyone should follow or begin with. The following are a preppers ten basic items: food, water, security, shelter, hygiene/first aid, cooking, lighting/power, tools/misc./entertainment, sanitation, and communication (Henry, 2014).
Many people coming into prepping can be overwhelmed with the prices of items as well as quantity of different items that complete the same task. Prepping is based on a budget and the prepper’s budget decides where the prepper may want to shop. What is meant by this is that if a prepper is on a limited budget most if not all items can be purchased at a store such as Dollar Tree, but if the prepper has an unlimited budget or is not looking to worry about price as much they may look at larger retail stores such as Bass Pro Shop or Cabala’s, Amazon, Costco and so on. While the qualities will be significantly different, at least the items are within the prepper’s inventory.

Speaking of inventory, maintaining an inventory of items is a vital part of prepping. Knowing when items were purchased, how long they last, how many a prepper has, and what is still needed will help keep a prepper on track. While many items can maintain their usage following an expiration or use by date, there are items that can be harmful following these dates.

Scenarios

Now that most aspects of prepping have been touched upon, scenarios of why people prep must be explored. While most prepare for natural disasters there are those preparing for events such as an economic collapse, political upheaval or even an invasion from another country. Websites such as Ready.gov or FEMA.gov provide many scenarios as well as a guide of how to prep. Using the timeline provided within Ready.gov a new prepper can begin a routine and learn what they must do prior to, during, and after the disaster occurs. Regardless of the reasoning for preparing, in order to ensure survival it must occur.

In a country where the unpredictable occurs almost daily, many would believe prepping should occur with each and every citizen in the United States. While many have given important views on this same topic there are those that tend to stick out such as Gen. Patton or even Stephen King. Another wise man, Benjamin Franklin, once said the best words, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”. In other words if people do not prepare for what is to come people will not survive what is coming. With that said I leave you with this question to take how you’d like. If the government is stockpiling food, water, weapons, ammo and medical supplies do you think it is a good time for you to do the same?

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References
Bradley, A. (n.d.). The Disaster Preparedness Handbook. New York: Skyhorse Publishing.
Disaster. (n.d.). Retrieved from Merriam Webster: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disaster
Doomsday prepper statistics. (n.d.). Retrieved from Finder: https://www.finder.com/doomsday-prepper-statistics
Duff, B. (2017, May 9). The History of Prepping. Retrieved from Mind 4 Survival: https://mind4survival.com/the-history-of-prepping/
Emergency. (n.d.). Retrieved from Merriam Webster: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/emergency
Emerson, C. (2016). 100 Deadly Skills: Survival Edition. New York: Touchstone.
Henry, P. (2014, February 26). Prepping 101. Retrieved from The Prepper Journal: http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2014/02/26/preppers-list-of-supplies/
Long, H. (2011). Holy Bible. Colorado Springs: Biblica Inc. Retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis+6&version=NIV
Perry, T. L. (1995, October). The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Retrieved from If Ye Are Prepared Ye Shall Not Fear: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1995/10/if-ye-are-prepared-ye-shall-not-fear?lang=eng
Plan Ahead for Disasters. (n.d. ). Retrieved from ready.gov: https://www.ready.gov/
Pred, J. (2015). Emergency Survival Manual 294 Life-Saving Skills. San Francisco : Weldon Owen.
Preparing for Disaster for People with Disabilities and other Special Needs. (2004, August 1). Retrieved from FEMA.gov: https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1445-20490-6732/fema_476.pdf
Stahlberg, R. (2010). The Armageddon Survival Handbook. New York: Skyhorse Publishing.
Walton, J. (2018, May 23). American Preppers Network. Retrieved from Inspire Those Around you to Start Prepping: http://americanpreppersnetwork.com/2018/05/inspire-those-around-you-to-start-prepping.html

 

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Hobbies That You Can Do In The Bunker

11 Jul

Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: An article from Nicole to The Prepper Journal. In the past we have had posts on Easy Ways to Entertain the family without Electricity and The 16 Best Hobbies for Preppers, and now we have a different way of looking at things to do at TEOTWAWKI. As always, if you have information for Preppers that you would like to share and be entered into the Prepper Writing Contest with a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards  with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies, then enter today!

“Round Fourteen of The Prepper Journal’s Writing Contest is coming Friday!”

Suppose you flee to a nuclear bunker in order to survive a bomb blast. You can’t stay bored in the fortification for the next 9 or 12 years without electricity, can you? Being cooped up in a dugout can be frustrating not to mention that you might run out of food before the time is up. Assuming that you have sufficient food for a long stay, what hobbies would you consider to keep yourself busy?

A hobby is not simply a way of passing time. It also improves life quality. You do it for pleasure and no one pays for entertaining yourself. In normal circumstances, we take hobbies for leisure and sometimes they may seem a luxury we cannot afford. But if you are surviving a catastrophe in a blockhouse, a hobby might be the only thing to keep you occupied. An entertainment activity offers a plethora of benefits such as:

  • It gives you hope
  • It keeps your mind occupied
  • It can invoke passion in you
  • It provides a sense of self-sufficiency
  • It is a creative outlet

Below are fun activities that can improve your quality of life while you’re underground.

Reading books

Books provide a lot of imaginative fun. You can even read them out to your family and friends. Any scenarios you could imagine can be played put in a fiction book. Reading allows you to take your mind off the possible tragedy as you take accommodation in a safe shelter. This activity involves more than just passing time. It polishes your knowledge and trains your brain to concentrate. Don’t forget that reading also improves your vocabulary. What a better way to improve brain power. It is like working out your brain like you do to your body in the gym. Moreover, research indicates that reading minimizes stress by 69% so you will be able to sleep better.

Apart from fiction books, consider reading human psychology and medicine. You will learn how to diagnose and treat common sicknesses which you might encounter in the fortification. By the time you get out of the ‘hole,’ you will have gained incredible skills like those of medical practitioners. You can also learn how to be a builder or an electrician by reading books on engineering. This will not only keep your brain active but also focused during the prolonged stay. Go ahead and teach yourself about the economy. There are a lot of skills you need as far as investment goes. Find out how other nations are doing economic-wise. You might be interested to move to another country which is more economically stable after leaving the bunker. By making good use of the many years at disposal, you would come out more knowledgeable than ever before and perhaps start teaching people!

Practice yoga

Yoga benefits both the mind and the body. You only need a small space to keep your body and mind healthy. You will be in a position to keep your sanity intact while you are cooped up down there. Yoga is also an active form of entertainment for both men and women. After many years of training, you will be so physically fit that others might think you are a fitness model. The best thing about yoga is that it helps you to meditate. Meditation is another wonderful technique of reducing stress, improving brain focus, lowering blood pressure, and improving your immunity. Meditation is fun too. It gets you into a good mood and you feel relaxed all the time.

Learn a Foreign Language

You may not have professional teachers in the bunker but you can ask someone to teach you their language. Learning new language allows you to communicate effectively during travels. Being multilingual would also be a great addition to your resume. Studies show that bilinguals think differently than monolinguals. The ability to speak more than one language makes you smarter and you will be more decisive. It actually helps you to polish your own native language. The other benefit is that you can cope with dementia more effectively and you will be more perceptive.

Dancing

Dancing is fun. It also provides benefits like those of physical workouts. Furthermore, it reduces stress by increasing the production of serotonin which is a neurotransmitter hormone that is associated with wellness feelings. Dancing also improves cognitive power thus making you smarter.

Have you checked out exceptional essays about dancing on Edu Birdie? There is a lot you could learn from this site.

Awaken your inner karate child

Karate is a martial art and provides real value to your life. It is one of the best ways to learn self-defense. Practicing martial arts allows you to develop coordination, stamina, strength, and body balance. Moreover, karate teaches you to be more disciplined and stay focused. It is another way to bring your body and mind together.

Crafting

What craft are you good at? Maybe you are good at knitting. You can pick up the needles and threads and make stuff. According to an expert, crafting offers similar benefits to those of meditation. It can help you get over a chronic pain, depression, and anxiety. The continuous action of knitting triggers your parasympathetic nervous system. This is a form of nervous control that calms you down during stress so you don’t have to take a flight or fight response. It is normal to get bad illusions when you are stuck in a place but engaging in craft can give you the peace of mind you just need.

Make new friends

It doesn’t matter how many people are with you in the bunker. You can meet them and establish friendships that will be of great help in future. The last thing you can do when idle is to isolate yourself. Did you know that social isolation is a worse killer than obesity? Spending time with others is fun. They don’t have to be in the same age as you – there is a lot you can learn from the elders and younger people as well. Making new friends is one key to happiness.

Juggling

Juggling can boost your brain concentration as well as hand-eye coordination. Moreover, it is a form of active meditation like yoga. It ensures that your brain is fully engaged in the objects you are trying to juggle, putting you in a relaxed state of mind like you would achieve when chanting with your legs crossed o the floor.

Final word

In a bunker, you don’t get to chat with friends on Facebook or watch your favorite TV series. But there are countless hobbies you can pick or develop in the dugout. You may start with the 8 activities outlined above and still live your best life.

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Danger! Danger! A Solar Storm is About to Strike!

14 Apr

Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: Another guest contribution from John D. to The Prepper JournalAs always, if you have information for Preppers that you would like to share and be entered into the Prepper Writing Contest with a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards  with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies, then enter today!From:  John D.

News reports of 11-April-2018 warned that a solar storm could strike Earth this week. It went on to say that this such storms are more disruptive now than in the past because of our greater dependence on technical systems that can be affected by electrical currents and energetic particles high in the Earth’s magnetosphere. While this one is expected to be a minor storm, with only minimal negative effects on the surface of the earth, the comments on that news article were quite interesting. Most of the comments were jokes and ridicule. Some were quite clever. Many comments were of a political nature, and Al Gore’s name was mentioned more than once.

The jokes and ridicule are understandable. This is not our first solar storm. We’ve lived through all of them, and you’ll be hard pressed to find anyone who’s experienced even the slightest of negative consequences. Not just that, but we know what to expect from the media. If they don’t stir up emotions, they don’t sell stories. We expect exaggeration, and the media seem oblivious to the much deserved ridicule they receive. On the other hand, could this be like the story of the boy who cried wolf? If, and when, we hear about a destructive solar storm headed for earth, will we take it seriously? Probably not. Some preppers are wise enough to take it seriously, and take the appropriate precautions, but the vast majority of people will not.

I might be as skeptical as anyone else, except for several accounts of actual solar storm-related destruction. In 1982, a massive solar flare disrupted communications and set off fires in Chicago. On March 10, 1989 a geomagnetic superstorm affected satellites in orbit, and shut down power grids in North America and northern Europe. Six million people in northeastern Canada were without power because of damage to Quebec’s power grid. A more powerful solar storm struck the earth in 1859, causing telegraph wires to burst into flames, and shocking operators. These are just a few of the many incidents that have occurred over the years.

If I needed more incentive to prepare for an extended grid power outage, I might get it from the contents of a 2008 congressional report concerning the possible effects of an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP). An EMP could be the result from a solar storm, or it could come from a weapon. Enemies of the United States are known to be working on such weapons, and may already have them. The EMP Commission determined that the U.S. as a society today is not structured, nor does it have the means, to provide for the needs of nearly 300 million Americans without electricity. It goes on to say that casualties resulting from a long term power outage could exceed 60% of the population.

Today, due to our ever-increasing dependence upon very sensitive electronic components, a moderate to strong solar flare would cause massive damage and widespread power outages. It would take years to fully recover. It has been estimated that a solar storm as strong as the 1859 storm occurs only once in 100 years. If that’s true, then we’re long overdue.

Of those who commented on the April 11th news story, some say they don’t care if the power grid goes down. Surely they haven’t thought that through. The immediate aftermath would see people breaking out their candles and flashlights, and calmly making dinner on propane and charcoal grills. Most wouldn’t know what happened, and would expect power to be restored after a few hours. Day two would have some people concerned, and a lack of information would be unsettling. Those with generators will try to buy gasoline, but will find that gas stations can’t pump gas when the power grid is down. Refrigerated food begins to spoil, and store shelves empty quickly. Looting will be common as people become more desperate. Everyone will have serious concerns about their safety within a few days, especially those in the heart of big cities. Too many people, and too few resources, will lead to serious problems. Some will try to escape, if they happen to have cars that run. Cars have an abundance of sensitive electronic components in them, most of which will be damaged by a strong solar flare. Those who do escape will find that the road is a dangerous place to be, and it’s unlikely that things will be any better at their destination. There will be no rule of law, because police officers will have gone home to take care of their own families.

Could this scenario become a reality? Have you prepared for it? Stockpiling food, water, flashlight batteries, and candles is not enough. It has been estimated that the damage from a solar storm could take years to repair. Will your supplies last that long? Can you fight off starving hordes of people who’ve stopped asking politely for food? Do you know how to grow, catch, trap, or raise food? Can you preserve food, and make it through the lean times? Can you stay warm and dry?

If you’ve answered no or maybe to any of those questions, you already know what your deficiencies are. Can you remedy those before the next big solar flare? It’s not a matter of “if” it will happen, but “when” it will happen. The good news is that astronomers can now forecast solar storms. The release of charged particles take 18 to 36 hours to reach earth, allowing time to take the necessary precautions. Precautions include unplugging devices when not in use, not just turning them off. A Faraday cage provides the highest level of protection. Use one or more of them when it’s practical to do so. Test your Faraday cage, so you’ll know if it will work when you need it to. And remember, while a solar storm may come with an advance warning, an EMP weapon may be triggered with no advance warning. If you get into the habit of protecting sensitive devices before the next solar storm, your sensitive devices will probably be protected when they need to be.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/geomagnetic-storm-march-13-1989-extreme-space-weather/

https://www.space.com/7224-150-years-worst-solar-storm.html

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