Mexican Flu Update

Cheryl wrote to mention an article that described using Vitamin D to prevent a cytokine storm The dose is 2,000 units of Vitamin D per kilogram (1 kg = 2.2046 pounds), once per day. Thus, for an average 150 lb. adult, the dose would be would be 136,060 units of Vitamin D. This is to be taken for three days. (I.U. Equivalence: 50,000 units = 1.25 mg) My Strong Proviso: The usual fat soluble vitamin (KADE) warnings apply. Don’t over-do a good thing. You should discuss vitamin D testing and replacement with your physician before acting on that doctor’s recommendations! Vitamin D supplement limits vary depending on body weight, diet, and exposure to the sun. Today’s flu headlines: WHO pandemic threat level raised to 5 out of 6 New Flu Strain is a Genetic Mix First US Swine Flu Death, Cases Now in 10 States France urges Mexican flight ban Cuba Halts Mexico Travel (First Country to Do So) Pandemic Risk Grows as New Cases Emerge US cases now at 64, Mexico 152 dead, over 2,000 infected US Flu Deaths Seem Likely as Outbreak Spreads Scary Advertisements From 1976 Flu Outbreak Today they tell us to stay calm Mexico City … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Adapting Family Food Storage for Gluten Intolerance

Hi Jim, I wonder how many other preppers out there have the same issue we just discovered. My wife has always had trouble with her digestive tract. Recently we discovered that she is has Coeliac’s disease which means she is gluten intolerant. She can no longer eat gluten which it seems is in just about every type of prepared food. It comes from Wheat and is obviously in anything that has wheat in it, but it is also in lots of other things including vitamins, tomato paste, some candies, etc. It has been quite an adjustment for us! This makes it difficult for us to store wheat as she cannot eat it. The rest of us can, but it is hard to have lots of wheat based meals that part of the family cannot eat. So, does anyone else out there have any experience storing wheat substitutes or will we have to stock up more on rice and beans instead? Best Regards, – Tim P. JWR Replies: This topic has been raised before in SurvivalBlog, but because Celiac Disease (aka gluten-sensitive enteropathy) is so commonplace, it is worthwhile to discuss it further. The good news is that because gluten-sensitive enteropathy … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Home and Ranch Methane Gas Generators

Jim: I saw the following post concerning Gober (“dung”) gas, dated 27 April, 2009, over at Michael Yon’s web site:. “During breaks from tracking training – I was sweating like crazy in the jungle heat – I asked many questions about Afghanistan and Nepal, and he talked about a simple way to make many of the Afghans lives easier. Most Afghans don’t even have electricity. When he was about fifteen years-old, his dad installed a “Gobar Gas” (methane) generator next to the house in Nepal. The generator is simple: the owner just collects human and animal waste, and through a fantastically simple process, the contraption creates methane, which is then used for lighting, cooking, heating in the winter. It also creates excellent fertilizer, all while improving sanitation. What’s the catch? None that I’ve heard of. He said that his dad made the first Gobar Gas system in his village, and today it would costs maybe $300 total investment. Between their own toilet and four cows, they create enough methane to cook, heat and light the house. More than two decades after his dad made it, the thing is still working and doesn’t cost a single rupee to operate. When the … Continue reading

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Two Letters Re: My Experiment with a Field Gear Invention

Hello, Mr Rawles, I´m writing to you in response to Mike B´s letter “My Experiment with a Field Gear Invention.” Halfway´ through the second paragraph I began to smile since I instantly recognized the item he was writing about. How different outdoor culture can be from country to country. In Sweden this is called “sittunderlägg” and is somewhat of an household item among outdoors people. However, I would like to add some tips about the manufacture of the same. In Sweden they are made of closed foam, the same material as in the cheap camping mattresses. This has several advantages. First it´s cheap. A car mat can supply material for maybe one or two but a six foot mattress can be cut up to comfortably sit five or six people. Seeing both can be had for ten dollars or less the camping mattress saves some money, Secondly, weight. This I have not tested but I can´t imagine that car mats are lighter per square inch. Third and most importantly, closed foam insulates from cold. A car mat seat may be all right during summer treks but if you have to bug out in low or even sub-zero temperatures you would … Continue reading

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Economics and Investing:

From reader GC: Economy Shrinks at 6.1 Percent Pace in First Quarter Unemployment Up Again in Chicago In March, But Many Cities Fare Much Worse (thanks to Ray L. for the link) Linked at The Drudge Report: Phoenix leads nation in home price declines in February (Down 51%!) Commentary from Michael Pento: It’s Stagflation, Not Hyperinflation-For Now Items from The Economatrix: Government, Chrysler Lenders Reportedly Reach Deal to Avert Bankruptcy Shares of BofA, Citi Drop on Stress Test Concerns GM to Force Over 1,000 Dealers to Close China Admits to Building Up Gold Stockpile Small Caps Rally, Lifting Stocks

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Odds ‘n Sods:

America’s Most Dangerous Cities    o o o The Scientific American asks: Could Food Shortages Bring Down Civilization? (Hat tip to KAF for the link.)    o o o Frank S. sent us: When Did Your County’s Jobs Disappear? An interactive map of vanishing employment across the country.    o o o I just noticed that Wiggy’s is continuing their 25% Off Sale for their sleeping bags. Their FTRSS sleeping bags are fabulous. When I was having back problems, I gave my FTRSS the equivalent of three lifetimes worth of use, and it performed flawlessly. Wiggy’s bags are warm, tremendously durable, and American made!

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Notes from JWR:

The Tennessean newspaper (published in Nashville), recently featured an article about my novel: Survivalist author has end in sight — Amazon.com is now so backed up on orders for “Patriots” , that they have sent e-mails to customers, asking if they want to cancel their orders or hang on until perhaps mid-June for shipment. (If you do cancel, and then re-order at the new lower cover price ($8.97), be advised that you probably won’t get your copies until late June.) My publisher tells me that there are now 40,000 copies in print, but it may take a couple of weeks to get them though the supply chain to customers. Amazon.com has now ordered almost 14,000 copies. Other large orders have recently been placed by Borders, Barnes & Noble, and Costco. Thanks for making the book such a huge success, and thanks also for your patience! — Today we present another entry for Round 22 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The contest prizes include: First Prize: Two transferable Front Sight  “Gray” Four Day Training Course Certificates. This is an up to $4,000 value! Second Prize: A three day course certificate from OnPoint Tactical. This certificate will be for the prize … Continue reading

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Mexican Flu Update

It has been reported that the incubation period for the Mexican Swine Flu is 4-to-5 days, and perhaps as long as 10 days in children. That’s the “hot” period when someone infected is shedding the virus. This is bad news for epidemiologists. With modern air travel, this means that there is probably no stopping the flu from making it to the far reaches of the globe. So now, all that we can do is wait, watch, and pray that it doesn’t mutate into a more lethal strain. Barring that, my guesstimate is that it will be every country with a couple of months. The crucial time will be next winter in the Northern Hemisphere. It is now Fall in the Southern Hemisphere, so their upcoming flu season might give us a preview of what will happen up here, next year. Are you ready to hunker down when the flu hits your town? Here are today’s flu headlines: The Government’s Forecast if Flu Problem Explodes: Two Million Americans Die “Ninety million citizens would get sick. The economy would shut down.” DHS Sets Guidelines For Possible Swine Flu Quarantines Official: US Flu Victims May Be Infecting Others Confirmed cases in Asia Pacific … Continue reading

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My Experience with a Field Gear Invention, by Mike B.

I would like to share with everyone something I have in my Bug out Bag (BOB) that I have yet to see mentioned in any post or forum on the subject. I stole the idea fair and square from survival expert Les Stroud (of Survivorman television series fame) and modified it to suit my needs and budget. This simple addition weighs very little, costs very little, and makes so much sense I wondered why I hadn’t thought of it for so many years. In Les’s treks through the Canadian wilderness, he would often be seen wearing what looked like a tail. What Les had was a waterproof ‘flap’ that hung off of his belt which he tucked underneath his backside whenever he wanted to sit down. What this allowed him to do was sit on any wet fallen tree, rock or anything else that was hard but damp. While he was dressed in layers with his outer layer being water proof, Les regularly removed layers to avoid sweating. The effect was always having a dry place to sit, rest, or work. Without any details on the construction, I looked around for a suitable alternative which would perform the same function … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Bike Frame-Mounted DC Power Generators

James, Just a follow-up to the question about bicycle power: If you do a Google search on the phrase “bicycle power generator” then several interesting options come up. One is a web site that offers free plans. JWR Replies: Just keep in mind that every hour spent trudging away on a bike frame generator is an hour that you could also use doing something else productive. Dollar for dollar and hour for hour, photovoltaic panels are the way to go–they make power every day with minimal maintenance. I consider bike-frame mounted generators fairly specialized devices for peculiar circumstances, such as when someone is cooped up in a fallout shelter. My general advice is: Yes, go ahead and build one, but make it readily adaptable to multiple purposes, by using perforated box beam construction for the back half. This is similar to the construction method often used for hobby-built electric go-carts and similar projects. With perforated steel box beams, you will minimize the amount of welding needed to fairly quickly reconfigure the back half. For example, you could attach various pulleys and V-belts that can in turn be attached to a Country Living grain mill, a meat grinder, or a metal … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Another “Patriots” Book Sighting

Hi Jim, I hope all is well with you and your family. I just want to let you know that I spotted a copy of “Patriots” today in an unexpected place. My April issue of Christianity Today arrived and on page 42 is an article about Pastor Doug Wilson. On that page there is a picture of him standing in front of a large bookshelf filled with books. I noticed right in the middle is a copy of “Patriots” on the bookshelf. – Nick in Indy JWR Replies: You just made my day. I have been a fan of Doug Wilson’s writings for many years. He is the editor of Credenda Agenda–an excellent magazine on Christian apologetics from a Reformed perspective. Wilson pastors Christ Church, that meets in Moscow, Idaho. Since my novel is set in the Moscow region, this probably explains why he has a copy.

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