Note from JWR:

Some great news! Because book sales have remained strong, placed a huge-re-order for thousands of copies of my novel Patriots: A Novel of Survival in the Coming Collapse”. The economies of scale allowed them to drop their price to just $6.96. (They had previously sold it for more than $10, and its official cover price is still $14.95.) If you are planning to buy a few copies for birthday and Christmas gifts, then this is now your chance to get some for under $7 each!

Letter Re: An Outward Bound Prepper’s Perspective

Hi Jim,
I’m new to your site and books but not to the concepts and precepts. My dad had a survivalist/self-sufficient mindset with a cool mix of Native American philosophy and know-how. I didn’t eat store bought meat or baked goods until I was 10 or 12 and thought processing shoulders of venison in the kitchen was the norm. We had a huge garden and fruit tree orchard. My mom was a master at canning; although I think it should be called “jarring” because you’re putting it in jars, not cans. He collected, traded, and rebuilt guns and amassed quite a collection. I grew up reloading cartridges and sanding/staining stocks and thought nothing of it at the time. He taught us to hunt, fish, camp, garden, live off the land and many other things that I took for granted at the time. He passed away last year but his … Continue reading

Five Letters Re: The Survivalist’s Guide to Martial Arts

I agree with your writer that Muay Thai and Grappling (wrestling, BJJ, etc.) are essential fighting skills. I even admit that my two black belts in traditional arts were not worth much compared to a good grappler or kick boxer.

However the idea that avoiding the ground is rule #1 is not necessarily true. A grappler can control a situation very effectively on the ground and it is often then case that you can’t avoid going to the ground in a fight. Further, people of smaller stature (women especially) who cannot run from an encounter have an advantage on the ground vs. trying to duke it out with a much stronger opponent. By getting close to your adversary to engage them on the ground their primary weapons (hands and feet) are severely degraded in effectiveness. Further, a ground fighter can quickly and more reliably dispatch an opponent in … Continue reading

Letter Re: Transcript From a Colorado Flu Pandemic Meeting

The June 25, 2009 InfraGard meeting was on the pending pandemic. The speakers were Robin K. Koons, Ph.D., epidemiologist for the Colorado Emergency Preparedness and the Director of FEMA for the State of Colorado. This InfraGard meeting was non-restricted, so these notes may be shared:

[begin transcript]

It is anticipated that 30% of the working population, 42 million people, will become ill. 70% of the working population, 150 million people, will not get ill, and will have to run the country. In 1918 out of the 30% that became ill, 2% died.

Infrastructure may not meet human needs. Supply chain resources (warehousing, trucking, grocery store stocking, fuel deliveries) could break down because of current just-in-time inventories. Grocery and convenience stores may not have product for sale. Police, fire and rescue services might be restricted because of manpower shortages. Hospitals may run out of patient room.

How … Continue reading

Influenza Pandemic Update:

Swine Flu Multi-Shot Vaccine May Overwhelm States “Two injections will be required three weeks apart for swine flu, also known as H1N1, and a third will be needed for seasonal flu, health officials said at a meeting today at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in Atlanta. Children younger than 9 years old will need four shots, the CDC said. … People older than age 50 are getting swine flu at far lower rates than younger people, evidence they may have some immunity from prior exposures to a similar virus, and will only need one shot, the CDC said. … The agency estimates that at least 50 million vaccine doses will be available in the U.S. by Oct. 15, and enough vaccine to immunize everyone in the country will be available later in the season. … William Schaffner, an influenza expert at Vanderbilt University School of … Continue reading

Economics and Investing:

New Hampshire’s Senator Gregg slams the growth of the Federal Debt on an IBD editorial: A Debt The Founders Wouldn’t Believe. (Thanks to GG for the link.)

GG also suggested this piece: Depression 2.0 by Michael S. Malone

Patrick M. like this one: The Great American Bubble Machine

Items from The Economatrix:

Banks Reap Record $9.8 Billion Trading Derivative in First Quarter “The U.S. banking industry said it made $9.8 billion during the first quarter trading derivatives and securities as investors started returning to the markets amid signs the recession bottomed.”

States Form Committee to Oppose GM Sale to US, Voiding of Dealer Contracts

Bonds Beat Loans For Banks Driving Down Yields “Deposits at the San Antonio-based bank are growing a record 20 percent this year while loans shrink for the first time since mid-2007. Business owners are … Continue reading

Odds ‘n Sods:

There was a good article recently posted over at The Silver Bear Cafe: Help! The Grocery Store Shelves are Empty

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Andrew D. sent us this video link: Flooded River Destroys Road In Minutes. This illustrates hydraulic power–in this case circumventing an under-engineered culvert. Roughly the same thing happened at our old ranch, where the previous owner’s three-foot diameter culvert on the creek was washed out by springtime floodwaters. I replaced it in 1994 with a six-footer, and so far as I know it is still there, and the road above it is still intact.

   o o o

A reader in New Mexico wrote to ask if I prefer grid-tied or standalone photovoltaic (PV) systems. My general preference is for standalone, because they have less vulnerability to EMP. But the new 30% Federal tax credit on grid-tied systems tips the scales in … Continue reading

Jim’s Quote of the Day:

"…the Constitution does not repose in the Congress the power to bail out individuals or private industry: Bailouts violate the Equal Protection doctrine because the Congress can’t fairly pick and choose who to bail out and who to let expire; they violate the General Welfare Clause because they benefit only a small group and not the general public; they violate the Due Process Clause because they interfere with contracts already entered into… Worse still, Congress lacks the power to let someone else decide how to spend the peoples’ money. "- Judge Andrew Napolitano, November 25, 2008

Note from JWR:

The folks at Ready Made Resources mentioned that they have reduced their prices on many items, and now offer free shipping on most items. I also noticed that they’ve re-designed their web site. In the nearly four years that they’ve been advertising on SurvivalBlog, I’ve heard nothing but good things about the customer service provided by Ready Made Resources. Whenever there has been a glitch–and that has been rare–they’ve always gone the extra mile to make things right. In one instance, back during the severe shortage of Mountain House foods in 2008, a large storage food order was delayed, and an angry customer cancelled the order, stopping payment on his check. But the staff of Ready Made Resources shipped out his order anyway, even after knowing that they wouldn’t be paid for it. That sort of “returning kindness for wrath” is indicative of the integrity of the people that run … Continue reading

Ug-99 and The Ugly Times Ahead–There’ll Be Fungus Among Us

My consulting clients often ask me me for predictions. “What’s your timeframe, Mister Rawles?” I hear that in almost every consulting call. My clients ask: “When will the US economy crater?” I tell them that is impossible to predict, because there are so many variables and interdependencies, and because the markets are so heavily manipulated. They also ask me: Is the H1N1 Flu sure to mutate in to a more virulent strain, and if so, when?” I answer: “That is impossible to predict.” I’m also often quizzed about the Ug-99 wheat fungus (aka “Durable Wheat Rust”, or simply “the stem rust”). Clearly, it is advancing , but without a specific timeframe. Scientists are now calling the advance of Ug-99 around the globe “inevitable”. My greatest fear is that instead of just being spread gradually by the wind, the stem rust will make “leaps”, via the cargo holds of … Continue reading

France in 1940 as a Parallel to a Modern-Day Golden Horde on the Highways

Dear James:
I recently purchased a book that may be of interest to my fellow SurvivalBlog readers: Hanna Diamond’s book Fleeing Hitler: France 1940. This book is currently being remaindered at the Canadian Internet bookseller The jacket copy states: “In June 1940, as Hitler’s armies advanced on Paris, the French people became refugees in their own country. This is the story of their tragic flight”.

It describes what’s probably the largest, best-documented mass evacuations of a major Western city in modern times. Invasion by Germany certainly constitutes the Schumer hitting the fan in most people’s opinion; the French certain thought so; millions of them bugged out ahead of the Wehrmacht. In a nutshell, their experiences validate current survivalist thinking about bugging out; the importance of getting out early, what to bring and what to leave, … Continue reading

Letter Re: An Upcoming Retreat Purchase — Sell Gold or Take a Mortgage?

We love your site. It is part of our daily must reads. While driving to view possible retreat locations today, we printed out your advice on retreat locations and read it again as we drove to the determined area. After looking most of the day, we literally stumble upon (because it was not visible from the road – only a for sale sign) a nearly perfect location, several springs, trees, hillside with level areas, in the top three in all categories of your retreat lists, etc.

In looking to make an offer we wanted your advice regarding financing the purchase. Would you recommend selling gold reserves, home equity line of credit (HELOC) on debt-free primary residence, seller financing to the extent available or institutional financing? Why and/or why not for each? Thank you so much for all you are doing. You are providing an extremely valuable and … Continue reading

Letter Re: Last Minute G.O.O.D. Versus Well-Considered Early Relocation

Dear Editor:
John M.’s letter was excellent, polite, and to the point.

The following are my rules for townies:

1. If your water comes out of a faucet or a bottle, and you can not safely walk to a permanent backup source in less than 10 minutes every day, then you will die.

2. If you do not raise your own food, or personally know the family that you bought it from, you will either die, or be forever controlled by someone with a clipboard and a list, and you will wish you were dead.

3. If you live in the city because your job is more important than your life, then don’t bother bugging out. The only Job you are likely to get out here in the country is digging graves for people that think like you.

4. A centuries old rule of farming: It takes a minimum … Continue reading

Economics and Investing:

From Ben M.: Bad news for GM; China ‘to block’ Hummer takeovei

Currie and GG both sent us a link to a piece over at Zero Hedge: Here Comes Russian Bank Nationalzation “Russia is considering a banking bail-out that will go further than measures taken by the US, as fears grow that bad loans could paralyse the economy.” Oh, by the way, GG dubbed the Russian bailout “The MOABsky”

David R. flagged this data point: Dresdner Kleinwort Securities Withdraws as Primary Fed Dealer. David’s comment: “This is important because being a primary dealer was the equivalent of having a license to print money (under fractional reserve lending rules). For Dresdner to be withdrawing is bad, bad, bad news for the dollar. This is just an early warning sign but the signs are piling up. The dollar is in trouble.”

And here are four items, … Continue reading