Notes from JWR:

The recent news headlines from Egypt show a similarity to many of the TEOTWAWKI predictions we’ve seen mentioned in SurvivalBlog. In the past three days, we have witnessed: an interruption of communications, chaos and looting on city streets, those who are in-the-know quickly and quietly Getting Out of Dodge, many policemen staying in their stations or even at home to protect their own families, mass prison escapes, neighbors teaming up in ad hoc teams to protect lives and property, and the military either unable or unwilling to step in to stop most crimes. The Egyptian food-price-protests-turned-revolution should be a lesson to us. — Today we present the final two entries for Round 32 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round 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 $795, and B.) Two cases of Mountain House freeze dried assorted entrees, in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources. (A $392 value.) C.) A 9-Tray Excalibur Food Dehydrator from Safecastle.com (a $275 value), D.) A 250 round case … Continue reading

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Earthships: Sustainable Living for TEOTWAWKI, by Sgt. P.

How much did the average home owner in the United States pay for utilities last month?  Last Year?  How much will they pay for utilities by the time they pay off their mortgage?  If they averaged $250 per month in utilities, which is below the national average of “$264.33 per month” (Statistic quoted by White Fence) the answer is shocking.  With the average home loan lasting 30 years, without taking into consideration rising costs, utilities would be $90,000!  For that amount of money this homeowner could put one child through a four year-degree at a very nice university.  What if I could explain how to build a home that would have little or no utility costs and cost the same or less to build as a conventional home?  I think that everyone should consider living in a growing architectural design called an Earthship because it will provide housing to live sustainably with no utility bills, ever. There is an Earthship community where people live and work on their own property; and share labor and food with each other.  “Stacked up in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains near Taos, New Mexico, is a community of ‘Earthship’ houses, a … Continue reading

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Prepared? I Hope So, by C.W. in Arizona

Those of us who wish to be prepared for whatever may lay ahead, are always faced with unique situations and challenges.  Those challenges may include such things as: lack of funds, a difficult location, non-supportive or elderly or disabled family members, your age or stage in life, etc. The list goes on and on. However, is it imperative to find solutions and make plans?  I think so!  While my situation is a little unusual, I count myself as truly blessed to be one of those individuals who knows the time to be prepared is now, rather than later.  I am not about to be deterred or overwhelmed.  I do not want to face these challenging times without a plan. Neither should you.  The questions you ask now may be the key to your successes later.  I knew I needed to have a plan or plans that I could realistically attempt to implement.  I began by making an assessment of my situation; then formulating several plans along with a variety of solutions including skills and preps that could work for my unique circumstances.   While my needs will be quite different from yours, the process of forming the plans will be easy … Continue reading

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Letter Re: First Aid Kits Are Not Enough

I have been a prepper for a while and I have always regarded my current location in rural West Virginia a safe place for WTSHTF. However I failed to recognize it’s vulnerabilities in the time before that happens. To set the stage I live just west of the Shenandoah Valley, the nearest hospital is 20 miles away over a mountain chain in Virginia, a 45 minute drive during good weather. It had been snowing for two days and this route happened to be closed to all but emergency vehicles. The other hospital was a two hour drive away, again, snowed in. Our county had two ambulances, one was in a volunteer fire department (They had no established fire department) the other roamed the county seat, which was 12 miles away over another ridge of mountains. My wife was cooking and my two children were in their rooms playing. It was at this time that I learned a valuable lesson about first aid kits and how unprepared they actually leave you. My wife, through some slip and catch routine caught the business end of a carving knife just below the inside of her elbow. The cut was about 2.5 inches long … Continue reading

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Three Letters Re: Bypassing the Internet Kill Switch

Hello Mr. Rawles! Long time reader here, but had taken a break from most blogs for almost a year as I focused on generating alternative sources of income. I have an important question for you. How will we access the Internet after the government shuts off “the switch“? Would we still have access via dial up possibly? I’m on broadband now and its been a long time since I’ve used dial up service. I’ve used Ubuntu Linux the past 4, almost 5 years now and I know many old dial up modems do not work well in Linux/ (At least the inexpensive winmodems don’t work well.) Of course, some brand name modems still work great. I’ve have been recently re-watching the Jericho television series to get some ideas of life after the SHTF. My wife from Ukraine says collapse is at USA’s doorstep with all the telltale signs). In the show Jericho, Robert Hawkins continues to use a government computer even after an EMP and mention is made the Internet was designed to be able to survive a nuclear war. What about a Presidential kill switch? In any case, I was thinking of getting to know dial up again. Are … Continue reading

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Letter Re: The Caliber of SurvivalBlog Advertisers

Sir: Just a short note to provide feedback on your advertisers. First, as a retired engineer who always dealt with verifiable data, I am always initially skeptical of product claims and hype. However, since I have, over the years, started buying materiel, I have found that your advertisers provide not only great products, but also outstanding service. I now have come to trust any company I see on SurvivalBlog. Looking back, I have spent approximate $14,000 in the last three years getting my family prepared. From your advertisers, I have purchased books, seeds, food, gear, water filters, barrels, grain mills, wheat berries, etc. I have never encountered any problems with any of your advertisers when I have had the need to call for additional information. I received nothing but outstanding customer service. Today I purchased a Tri-Fuel conversion kit for my Generac generator from the company mentioned in a recent post. I had been looking for two years for the correct one. Your site, while it has valuable information and hands on application data, is also a valuable source for saving time in finding the right material for specific uses and situations. As far as I and my family are … Continue reading

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Economics and Investing:

Egypt and Tunisia usher in the new era of global food revolutions G.G. flagged a piece by veteran investing guru Richard Russell (of Dow Theory fame): The Dollar Has Lost All Stability And Is Ready For A Crash B.B. sent this: Why the Smart Money is Trading Dollar Bills for Hard Assets Items from The Economatrix: All 100 Oz. Bars of Silver Gone in a Matter of Days Davos 2011: Roubini Says G-20 Has Become G-0   America Faces Biggest Deficit in History   Federal Reserve Concerned Over US Job Creation   UK Retailers Cut 10,000 Jobs Last Month   Will Gold, Silver & Oil Prices Soar on Social Unrest in the Middle East?  (Yes, Yes, and Yes)   Alan Greenspan Entertains Metal Standard, Again

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Inflation Watch:

Rocky Mountain Power asks for 13.7% rate hike Reader Steve C. pointed us to a blog written by Barry Ritchie, a missionary in Honduras. Ritchie mentions that staple foods like rice and beans have nearly quadrupled just in the past year. Steve’s comment: “Food inflation is most certainly on the rise, and apparently even faster in those areas where folks can even less afford the increase.” The Downsizing of America:  Manufacturers Learn Creative Methods of Repackaging Inflation  

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Odds ‘n Sods:

Here is a must read piece by Dr. Gary North on family relocation when war is on the way: Moving How Far Out?    o o o A company is offering a unique “Multi-Lens TEOTWAWKI Vision System“. These unisex eyeglasses includes complete sets of left and right scratch resistant prescription lens ranging in fine diopter increments from – 1.0 up to – 5.0 diopters.    o o o Here it comes, just as I warned: BATFE Study On The Importability Of Certain Shotguns. I believe that it was no coincidence that the ATF document featured a picture of a Saiga 12 shotgun. That is the one that has them feeling antsy. They are presently having a “public comment period.” Please politely let the ATF know two things: 1.) The Second Amendment has nothing to  do with “sporting” guns or hunting ducks. Rather, it preserves our right to own paramilitary (“militia”) firearms. and 2.) Detachable magazine shotguns such as the Saiga 12 gauge are indeed popular for sporting shotgun “Three Gun Match” events.    o o o Davey in Michigan notes that the February 2011 issue of Sky and Telescope has some interesting articles concerning the Sun, the upcoming solar cycle maximum, coronal mass ejections … Continue reading

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Jim’s Quote of the Day:

“If only I had some grease I could fix some kind of a light,” Ma considered. “We didn’t lack for light when I was a girl, before this newfangled kerosene was ever heard of.”   “That’s so,” said Pa. “These times are too progressive. Everything has changed too fast. Railroads and telegraph and kerosene and coal stoves – they’re good things to have, but trouble is, folks get to depend on ’em.”  – Laura Ingalls Wilder, The Long Winter (Which describes the harsh winter of 1880-1881 in the Dakotas.)

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Note from JWR:

Today we present another two entries for Round 32 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round 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 $795, and B.) Two cases of Mountain House freeze dried assorted entrees, in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources. (A $392 value.) C.) A 9-Tray Excalibur Food Dehydrator from Safecastle.com (a $275 value), D.) A 250 round case of 12 Gauge Hornady TAP FPD 2-3/4″ OO buckshot ammo, courtesy of Sunflower Ammo (a $240 value), and E.) An M17 medical kit from JRH Enterprises (a $179.95 value). Second Prize: A.) 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 $400, B.) A $250 gift card from Emergency Essentials, and C.) two cases of Meals, Ready to Eat (MREs), courtesy of CampingSurvival.com (a $180 value). Third Prize: A.) A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21. (This filter system is a $275 value.) , and B.) Expanded … Continue reading

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Realistically Raising Chickens for Meat in a Survival Situation, by B.R.

As both an organic, pastured chicken farmer and someone very interested in preparing for any possible future disruption in the food chain, I have given much thought to what it would take to keep my flock going if everything went to heck in a hand basket. Eggs or Meat? Over the past several generations, chickens have been selectively bred to either grow fast and put on lots of meat quickly or crank out eggs like a Pez dispenser. The problem with this specialization of breeds is that it has created fragile, problem prone chickens. The modern breeds require high octane specialized feed and even then suffer from leg crippling problems and deformities. Also problematic is the fact that modern meat birds can no longer mate naturally and must be artificially inseminated to reproduce. This is not a good scenario if you are trying provide your family with a sustainable source of fresh meat when you can no longer swing by the grocery store for some plastic-wrapped boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Ready, Set, Go To have any hope of realistically raising chickens for meat or eggs in a survival situation there are several factors that must be addressed. Don’t even hope … Continue reading

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