Hurricane Katrina Update:

You’ve all read the news stories, so I’ll be brief: Things are very Schumeresque in New Orleans and Biloxi. The damage is much more severe than was experienced with Hurricane Camille back in 1969. Perhaps as many as one million people will become refugees. The Lake Pontchartrain levee breach (currently 200 feet wide) may mean that there will be 20+ feet of water in much of Nah-Lens. Hopefully the breach can be repaired before that happens. There won’t be a full death count for several weeks. One official said that the death toll will be “much higher than Camille” (which claimed 200 lives.)

As of Monday night, more than 37,000 people were in American Red Cross shelters, and that number is rising as people are plucked off their rooftops. Nearly 5 million people, in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida are without utility power, and power won’t … Continue reading

National Forest Inholdings–Another Criteria for Choosing Your Retreat Locale

Like being inside a tribal reservation, owning land that is within a National Forest is another problem. An “inholder” of property within a National Forest or other government land may find himself subject to seasonal road restrictions. “De-roading” contracts started with the Clinton administration, but sadly the process is continuing. There might also be restrictions on land use, agriculture, pasturing, hunting, shooting and so forth. My recommendation is to avoid buying land that inside of a National Forest, or that is in vulnerable a strip of land between National Forest tracts–land that might be designated a "wildlife corridor" and hence either seized un Eminent Domain, or made subject to restrictions.

Tomorrow’s Terrorism Headlines

The following piece of fiction that I penned is just one of example of what might happen sometime in the near future:

At 8:15 A.M. on May 1st, an 18-wheel tractor/trailer backed up to one of the hundreds of roll-up doors at the primary Wal-Mart merchandise distribution center in Benton, Arkansas. (It is the largest of Wal-Mart’s 40 distribution centers.) On the trailer was a typical 53-foot long steel transoceanic shipping “continental express” (CONEX) container. It arrived scarcely unnoticed because hundreds of them arrived at the distribution center every day. Inside the CONEX, a 1,800-gallon tank that formerly held propane was welded to the floor. Just seconds after the container’s double doors were swung open; there were a pair of powerful explosions. First, nine hundred linear feet of Primacord PETN detonating cord glued together in six thicknesses along the upper edges of the CONEX peeled back the top of the … Continue reading

Letter Re: Knife Makers

Hello Jim.
I loved Patriots and have read it four times. You managed to combine a lot of great advice with an interesting story. I’m really enjoying the blog as well. In one of the postings you were discussing knives. I wanted to suggest you take a look at Lone Wolf Knives. It’s a small company that works with a number of well known knife designers to produce a very high quality product. I particularly like a Butch Valloton designed knife, the Val-Matic. It’s a very stealthy liner lock that uses the scales as a release mechanism. Gives you the best of both worlds in that it combines fully automatic opening with manual features and shows no outward signs of it’s automatic capabilities.
Here’s a link to the web page describing the knife. Keep up the good work. God bless you … Continue reading

Tribal Reservation Lines as Criteria for Choosing Your Retreat Locale

Indian (for those readers overseas: U.S. Native American aboriginal) reservation boundaries can be another important criteria for selecting your retreat locale. In recent years, tribal governments in the U.S. have started flexing their muscles. When living inside the boundaries of an Indian reservation you will face an extra layer of bureaucracy, taxes (or “fees” or “permits”), law enforcement, and potentially a myriad of restrictions. You will also lack the ability to recover damages in the case of accidents in many instances. Real estate agents will often try to down play the significance of being "on the reservation", but do some detailed research for yourself before you buy! In essence, when you buy property inside a reservation you only have whatever property rights that are granted to you by the tribe. This varies widely. These rights can be withdrawn at any time and you will have no recourse except though … Continue reading

Truck Frame-Mounted PTO Genset for Chevy/GMC Pickups

A regular SurvivalBlog contributor sent me the URL for a company called RealPower. They make a truck frame-mounted power take-off (PTO) genset for GMC/Chevrolet pickups. (If you have a 2001 to early 2004 GMC or Chevy truck with an Allison 1000 automatic transmission, then you have a PTO gear. Note: From March 1 through late 2004 Chevrolet and GMC pickup trucks were not built with PTO.  After January 1, 2005, PTO became optional.) Obviously these are not designed for continuous duty, but if you have the budget for a spare generator, then this might be a viable option. My first question: What RPM range is required when the genset is under load?

Proviso: I have not had the opportunity to do research on either the technology of the company’s reputation. Perhaps one our readers has some first hand experience with a RealPower genset and can enlighten … Continue reading

From The Memsahib: Book Review of “Why Gender Matters”

Why Gender Matters: What Parents and Teachers Need to Know about the Emerging Science of Sex Differences. by Leonard Sax, M.D., Ph.D.

During the years that I was growing up, parents were told that boys and girls were the same. Supposedly it was only the stereotypical way the children were treated that made girls bad at math and boys aggressive. If children were treated just the same, girls would excel at the sciences and boys would be able to express their feelings. In Why Gender Matters, Leonard Sax, using 20 years of research documents how sex differences are significant and profound.

I found this book fascinating and I would recommend it to all teachers and parents, especially to parents with children that are having difficulty in school. I learned that boys do not hear as well as girls. Many boys have difficulty hearing their soft spoken female teachers … Continue reading

Hurricane Katrina

I won’t belabor this point. Either folks were prepared, or they weren’t. Apparently, most weren’t and are now suffering. You’ve read the news stories. Those of you that own televisions have doubtless seen the news coverage. There is a concise compendium on Yahoo that summarizes the effects of the storm. I’d appreciate hearing some first hand accounts from SurvivalBlog readers that are in the affected area. Please keep the folks in Louisiana and Mississippi in your prayers!

Flawed Doctrine, Good Food Storage Advice

The Church of Latter Saints (commonly called the Mormons) and I will never come to agreement doctrinally. (Their doctrinal books refer to Christ as a spirit brother of Lucifer, and one of a pantheon of gods. It is hard to bridge a doctrinal divide that deep!) But I will give them credit for requiring their church members to lay in a substantially deep larder. There are some great food storage tips and some useful recipes for cooking with food storage at this LDS web site.

Letter Re: Where to Get Iodine Crystals?

Iodine crystals for disinfecting water are available as a trade product called “Polar Pure” from most of the regular backpacking supply places such as REI. It comes in a small bottle with a screened top, you fill it, shake it, and then decant a capful or two of the supersaturated solution into your water. The bottle has full instructions and also a thermometer so you know how long the water should sit before use. The cost was about $8 or so, last time I bought any. – “Doc”

JWR’s Reply: A highly recommended product! One little three ounce bottle can treat up to 2,000 quarts of water. I recommend that you buy one for each of your G.O.O.D. kits. Warning: The wire screen at the top of the bottle is there for a reason. Ingesting iodine crystals can be deadly!

Polar Pure is sold by Continue reading

Letter Re: Field Medicine Training

Hi Jim and Memsahib:
I think this site has valuable information for your readers as well as offering a Field Medicine School open to all who wish to attend. A three day course is around $325. The school is taught by veterans based on U.S. Navy Combat Medicine skills. It would be difficult to find another school filled with high-caliber cadre as well versed in this area anywhere. This link takes you to the curriculum site. Curriculum – Emergency Medicine – Medical Information

Keep up the great job! – “F1”