Note from JWR:

Today we present another entry for Round 27 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round will include: First Prize: A.) A course certificate from onPoint Tactical. This certificate will be for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses. (Excluding those restricted for military or government teams.) Three day onPoint courses normally cost between $500 and $600, and B.) Two cases of Mountain House freeze dried assorted entrees, in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources. (A $392 value.) C.) A HAZARiD Decontamination Kit from Safecastle.com. (A $350 value.), and D.) A 500 round case of Fiocchi 9mm Luger, 124gr. Hornady XTP/HP ammo, courtesy of Sunflower Ammo. This is a $249 value. Second Prize: A “grab bag” of preparedness gear and books from Jim’s Amazing Secret Bunker of Redundant Redundancy (JASBORR) with a retail value of at least $350. Third Prize: A copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, from Arbogast Publishing. Round 27 ends on March 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that articles that relate practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging. CAUTION: For the foregoing, all the usual chemistry lab safety … Continue reading

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Some Home Chemistry Tricks of the Trade, by RPM

Chemistry.  Say the word, and the average survivalist might cringe.  It brings up memories of a boring teacher in high school, or images of mad scientist lab with all sorts of beakers and tubes and glassware or long complicated formulas with strange symbols. In reality, chemistry can help every survivalist have an ace up their sleeve. It’s just a matter of knowing a few tricks of the trade.  You don’t have to know how to build a rifle to fire it well, or how to run a large farm to have a garden.  It’s a matter of fundamentals, of simple things right there in front of your eyes. Safety Proviso: This information is provided for educational purposes only.  While this information is scientifically sound, any experimentation with chemicals is dangerous. Any attempt to use this information is at your own risk and I take no liability or responsibility for your actions. There has been talk in SurvivalBlog and in books about some aspects of this idea from articles about stills and making your own drinking alcohol to biodiesel.  You can read about soap making, and learn about lye.  But, what is left out is, where are you going to get … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Passport to Worldband–2009 Will be the Last Edition

James: A heads-up for your readers: It has been announced that the 2009 edition of the book Passport to World Band Radio will be the last. I just bought one from the company that published it. They’re still in stock and significantly less expensive than the storefronts who still carry it at Amazon. – Del JWR Replies: Thanks for sending that news. That is disappointing, since the book is a great reference, especially the broadcast schedules. The frequency charts are bit less perishable, but I’ll be sad to miss out on the updates. I’m confident the on-line references will fill that void.

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Letter Re: Curbside Bulk Item Pick-Up Days

Hi, I just wanted to remind people that in some areas of the US with spring, there also comes curbside bulk item pick-up via local town and city trash service. This can provide a wealth of items from the trash of others. I have gotten so many things from this that I cannot even begin to list them all. Everything from children’s toys to hand tools to gas powered equipment such as mowers, tillers, snow-blowers, etc. Many of the items were in excellent shape and required only a clean-up. Others require a bit more work but can easily be made serviceable to those who have even a small idea what they are doing. For example, here is a link to one typical program a town in Colorado that has this service twice per year – spring and fall. When I lived in that area I used to “attend” this regularly with my pick-up and a trailer. If you have such a program in your area don’t hesitate to check it out. My only proviso is that you first check local laws to see if it is okay to take items from someone else’s trash. [Ordinances vary!] Some towns have enacted … Continue reading

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Economics and Investing:

Four readers sent me this blog piece: The RentenDollar: A conspiracy theory OR Please tell me where I’m wrong Asian Ocean Carriers Slashed Fleets GG sent this: Sell-off in US Treasuries raises sovereign debt fears;Investors are braced for a further sell-off in US Treasuries after dramatic moves last week raised fears that the surfeit of US government debt is starting to saturate bond markets. Items from The Economatrix: Treasuries Find Greenspan’s Canary Fainting in Mine MGM Bankruptcy Likely World Stocks Up on China Earnings, Greece Plan Not Hiring (In California) Consumers Slowly Show Signs of Springing Back Benchmark Crude Holds Above $82 US Government to Sell $25 Billion Stake in Citigroup Gold Prices Set to Soar as Demand Outpaces Supplies Supply Fears Start to Hit Treasuries

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Odds ‘n Sods:

Talkeetna Patriot found an interesting thread about constructing a hybrid ALICE/MOLLE bag.    o o o Cheryl sent this: Swine Flu Season Not Over, Warn Health Officials    o o o The leftist CNN is in hot water, after grossly under-reporting the size of the March 27th Tea Party Express gathering in Searchlight, Nevada. They described it as “hundreds of people or at least dozens of people” of people. Many more reliable accounts said that there were at least 10,000 people there. The Mainstream Media has obviously developed a bad case of myopia.

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Jim’s Quote of the Day:

“Ours was the first revolution in the history of mankind that truly reversed the course of government, and with three little words: ‘We the People.’ ‘We the People’ tell the government what to do; it doesn’t tell us. ‘We the People’ are the driver; the government is the car, and we decide where it should go, and by what route, and how fast. Almost all the world’s constitutions are documents in which governments tell the people what their privileges are. Our Constitution is a document in which ‘We the People’ tell the government what it is allowed to do. ‘We the People’ are free.” – Ronald Reagan, Presidential Farewell Speech, Jan. 11th, 1989

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Note from JWR:

Today we present another entry for Round 27 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round will include: First Prize: A.) A course certificate from onPoint Tactical. This certificate will be for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses. (Excluding those restricted for military or government teams.) Three day onPoint courses normally cost between $500 and $600, and B.) Two cases of Mountain House freeze dried assorted entrees, in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources. (A $392 value.) C.) A HAZARiD Decontamination Kit from Safecastle.com. (A $350 value.), and D.) A 500 round case of Fiocchi 9mm Luger, 124gr. Hornady XTP/HP ammo, courtesy of Sunflower Ammo. This is a $249 value. Second Prize: A “grab bag” of preparedness gear and books from Jim’s Amazing Secret Bunker of Redundant Redundancy (JASBORR) with a retail value of at least $350. Third Prize: A copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, from Arbogast Publishing. Round 27 ends on March 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that articles that relate practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.

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Advice for New Members to the Survivalist Camp, by Ken in Ohio

A couple of years ago I took the “red pill”. Media led propaganda and the tales of success from my elder peers led me down the path of blindness. No problem there, it was, and still is, the norm. All of us are led until the day we decide to take flight on our own. Sometimes its one incident that starts us down that new path of enlightenment; Haiti, Chile, Southern Louisiana, 9-11-01. Sometimes it is a series of unfortunate events; loss of the head of household, halving of investments or retirement funds, cut in pay or hours or loss of job, mountain of debt, higher prices for the things you want, higher prices for life sustaining needs, inability to sell your house, and on and on… However your understanding begins, it will not end until a new layer of comfort and security is built up. That will take education and preparing. Education is easy, your already doing it. Preparing is doing, and thus more difficult. Preparing is the act of buying a product, attending a class, physically practicing the skills on your list of things that you feel you will need to know. The actions of preparing will ultimately … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Advice on Pre-1899 Revolvers for Self Defense

James, The recent Webley letters are particularly interesting to me since I own a 92 year old Mk 6 Webley converted to .45 ACP. I reload for most of my 34 guns. 49 years of reloading with never even a blown primer, and only 2 duds (no powder) in 49 years with thousands upon thousands of reloads, makes me feel somewhat qualified to write this. castboolits.com is a lead bullet reloading and casting site to which I belong. Common knowledge there is that Webleys, even Mk. 6s are not suitable for even factory .45 ACP factory load pressures. One of the top Gurus recently told me that shooting factory .45 ACP loads in a converted Webley is like proofing it each time you fire it, and will eventually shake it loose. He recommended 5.2 grains of Unique behind a 250 gr. lead SWC as his top load. After that, I pulled all my 5.5 gr. Unique loads, and even went lower to 5 gr. Unique/250 gr./.452 lead. All warnings to this load data apply here. Naturally you will find some hot shot who loads his Webley to maximum .45 ACP+P+ pressures and gets away with it. These revolvers are old, … Continue reading

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Economics and Investing:

Reader S.M. pointed us to this article in The Washington Times: CBO report: Debt will rise to 90% of GDP From Zero Hedge: Higher Yields, Lower Equities? Another piece from Zero Hedge that several readers recommended: It’s Official – America Now Enforces Capital Controls Damon sent this: S&P Market Indicator Downgrades US Sovereign Debt to aa+ Travis recommended this alarming piece by Dan Denninger: On Deficits And Debt-Financed Government From George Gordon (“G.G.”) British credit rating ‘could be lowered’ The Adultsitter suggested this blog piece: FDIC Playing With Fire by Soliciting State Pension Money to Buy Toxic Assets Items from The Economatrix: Social Security Payout to Exceed Revenue this Year Consumer Spending Rises Modestly; Incomes Flat Oil Above $80 as Investors Look to Jobs Data World Stocks, Euro Rise as Debt Worries Ease Jupiter Financials Star Puts Half His Fund in Cash NASDAQ: All Bubbly Again States Seeking Cash Hope to Expand Taxes to Services It’s The Economy Again Come Fall Vote

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Odds ‘n Sods:

Trent sent this New York Times article: Push to Eat Local Food is Hampered by Shortage    o o o I just heard about a small company in Georgia that was founded by a retired USAF Tech Sergeant: Survival Solar Systems.    o o o A learning point (and OPSEC illustration) for SurvivalBlog readers: Militia group suspects charged with conspiracy. Don’t associate with mad bombers and radical “lunatic fringe” types! They are bad news and bound to suck a lot of innocents into trouble! Rest assured that there are a lot of good and honorable militias out there, but the Hutarees are not one of them.    o o o Damon sent this one: Scientists stumped as bee population declines further

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