Notes from JWR:

By popular demand, the 33% off sale price for the “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course has been extended until Monday night (December 3rd.) Be sure to place your order online (or have it postmarked) before midnight, Monday. Today’s first article is from the SurvivalBlog archives. I wrote it back in August of 2005. For the sake of the many newbies, I am re-posting it:

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The Pre-Test and the Ultimate Test

There may come a day when you have to put all of your training and preparations to use. That will be ultimate test of whether or not you have a true survival mindset. Do you think that you are ready for WTSHTF, physically and mentally? Assuming that you live in the suburbs, try a weekend “grid down” test with your family. This will test both your mental preparedness and how well you have prepared for the basics. Here is how it is done: Some Friday evening, unannounced, turn off your main circuit breaker and shut the valves the gas main and the water main. Leave them off until Monday morning. You might be surprised how the weekend goes. One thing that I can guarantee you: Some of the most accurate lists of logistics that you will ever compose are those written by candlelight. Now, assuming that your weekend test goes well, extrapolate to a situation where your entire community is in the same circumstances. Then add to that some turmoil: bullets are flying and perhaps there is even the occasional stray mortar round. The recent civil wars in Kosovo and Macedonia are good points of reference.

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Letter Re: Security for Unattended Retreats

Hello Jim, Todd’s article [on Friday, November 23rd] was a good discussion on the all encompassing aspects of your retreat. It has been some time since security has been discussed on the blog, namely security systems. Here are some things that could, (should) alert you to a detrimental event at your intended retreat when you do not live there. Have a security system wired into you future retreat, motor home, CONEX, outbuilding, etc… I would venture a cost range from $300-to-$2,000 to cover your structure from basic to very well covered. Monitoring varies and will likely run around a Dollar a day. There are countless options that provide “extra sets of eyes and ears” at your retreat during life as we know it. There are many companies that will give you support so you can install your own system. They will likely cash sale you the necessary wire and components. Then you can have them come out and connect it to a monitoring service that will call anyone you decide either before or after calling the authorities, it is customizable. If you would like it to call a trusted neighbor, your pager, or your own phone, it is possible. If … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Reactions to Preparedness Course

Jim: Your “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course is an amazing tome of information and I refer to it quite often. I’m thankful to have found it and I’m grateful that there are folks out there, like you and Jim, who are willing to devote serious amounts of time and effort sharing (well, okay, selling for a reasonable price) their knowledge. Hats off to you! Its weird, I’ve shown the course to several people and several ridiculed me for having spent such a sum of money on 220 pages of information relating to some guy’s shopping spree at a big box store. They simply failed to understand the importance of the information contained. Their reactions were what I’d expected but, surprisingly, three of the seven or eight folks I showed the course to found it to be as interesting and important as I did, and one of them is planning on buying the course this week. People are waking up. I don’t want to ramble on for too long, but suffice it to say that an incredibly tiny amount of people truly understand the predicament our country is in and the precarious nature of how food and goods are made … Continue reading

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Weekly Survival Real Estate Market Update

We have seen the first significant snowfall in northern Idaho and northwestern Montana which from the scuttlebutt around town has sent sellers into a panic, in which they rightly should be. Although some folks around my locale understand the engineered crash of the Dollar, most are still of the opinion that pulling their property off the market and waiting until spring will yield them either a better price (good luck) or a faster sale at that time (maybe so, with a plethora of SurvivalBloggers arriving?). This makes for more detailed work for your agent as they now must search the recently expired, withdrawn and canceled listings in your locale of choice, as much as the active listings for sale to find your retreat. The other issue is that most sellers, if the property remains on the market into winter, either fail to realize or just don’t want to admit that the value of their property may be drastically reduced very soon and you’ll need to be careful making too low of an offer as not to insult them. Many folks in the country are stubborn enough to walk away from a sale because of their pride, so be careful with … Continue reading

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Odds ‘n Sods:

Reader Michael C. mentioned that there is a nice selection of online bushcraft books at the Backyard Bushcraft web site.    o o o S&P Says Third-Quarter Housing Prices Dropped by Sharpest Rate in Index’s 21-Year History    o o o Bob M. in Pittsburg sent us this article link: The “Free Money” Credit Card Brawl at KMart. Bob’s comment: “I’m not sure which is more appalling; that people would riot, and behave thusly, or that they think that ‘credit’ is in fact, ‘free’ money!”    o o o From The Wall Street Journal: Study Warns of Decline In Value of Homes. The article begins: “The property value of U.S. homes will fall by $1.2 trillion, and ‘at least’ 1.4 million homeowners will lose their properties to foreclosure in 2008…”

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Note from JWR:

Today we present another article for Round 13 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The writer of the best non-fiction article will win a valuable four day “gray” transferable Front Sight course certificate. (Worth up to $2,000!) Second prize is a copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, generously donated by Jake Stafford of Arbogast Publishing. Round 13 ends tomorrow (November 30th). Remember that articles that relate practical “how to” skills for survival will have an advantage in the judging.

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Recycle!, Recycle!, Recycle!, by Heghduq

In the age of disposability one is hard pressed to find items that can be re-used. But if one looks hard enough you would be amazed at one can find to recycle and re-use. First don’t take anything for granted just because it says disposable on the package doesn’t mean that you cannot re-use it or part of it. Let’s take a look at some simple items that can be recycled and or cannibalized to be used for other purposes. When living on a fixed income it is paramount that you save as much money as possible. $600 a month is not a lot to work with when it comes to disposable income. So every penny counts. I learned most of my Recycling skills from my mother. She is a little off the rocker as it were but very practical when it comes to such things. A lot of what we have recycled over the years was from what other people have thrown out. Here is a list of items recovered by this scrounging. 1) Old screen doors – The screens are worth their weight in gold. If they are made of wood (Older homes) the wood can be used … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Advice on Buying AR-10 Rifles

James, I live outside of Boise, [Idaho] on 40 acres with a deep well and have most everything ready for a jump to my brother’s new ranch in Montana, if (when) the SHTF. While my place will be occupied by my friends that don’t have anywhere to go and /or want to stay in the area. I will leave for a better Bug Out Location where I and my family can better survive long term. I only live here because it is a good job and I can’t find anything even close to pay in the part of Montana that my brother lives in. He is a doctor and can afford the remote life style. I would like your input,. My brother and I are getting ready to buy a pair of .308 semiauto rifles and for the most part I like the Armalite AR-10 with an ACOG scope. This would be our defensive long range (250 to 500+ yard ) rifle. Any recommendations as to something “better” than a factory model, do you know of someone else building something with .308, reliable magazine design. While rails and collapsible stocks are cool and I would like them, they are not … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Preparedness Course Applicability for Australia?

Hello Mr. Rawles, I was looking to take advantage of your “1/3-off” offer on your “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, but before I spend that kind of money, I was wondering if you could tell me how suitable you course is for non-US conditions, specifically, Australian conditions? How “Americanized” is it, and how difficult would it be to “translate” it into Australian? I really enjoy your blog, and have found your tips and those of your contributors very helpful. Kind Regards, – Richard C. JWR Replies: The course and accompanying audio CD are largely geared toward American and Canadian readers, but if you have comparable “warehouse” type stores with large container/case lots of packaged foods available, then it should be 95% useful to you. Oh BTW, one oversight: I don’t list the shelf life of Vegemite. The 33% off sale for the course ends tomorrow, so be sure to place your order soon. Best Regards from us here the snowy north to you in the sunny south

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Odds ‘n Sods:

Paris suburb riots called ‘a lot worse’ than in 2005    o o o EU President Barroso: Weak dollar a ‘problem’ for world economy    o o o The precious metals market has been volatile, jumping up and down on every bit of international economic and financial news. I currently suggest “at-or-below” buy prices of $818 for gold, and $14.42 for silver. As always, buy on the dips! And, as previously mentioned, be sure to get your beans, bullets, and Band-Aids squared away before investing any excess cash in precious metals. It now appears very likely that the Federal Reserve will make further interest rate cuts. This can only be bearish for the US Dollar and bullish for silver and gold. Get out of dollars and in to tangibles!    o o o Murray and Larry W. both spotted this one: Citigroup to Raise $7.5 Billion From Abu Dhabi State. They are giving the sheiks 11% interest when the prevailing rates are half of that? This sounds like a desperation move to me.

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