The 20% Solution, by Redoubting Thomas

Get. Out. Now. Or as soon as reasonable. To the many who are reading this and working outside the Redoubt waiting on “something” before they sell their house and move, that is a mistake. This ongoing chronicle lists just one person’s challenges in moving.

A Radical Proposal

Even if much goes to hell (I’m not swearing but only using the proper word for an origin and destination), much won’t, and it will vary. Multiple nuclear bombs is a tiny possibility, like a major earthquake or volcano. It is also unlikely that it will happen suddenly. Most likely it will be a drip, drip, drip, that you won’t leave until it is too late. There are doomsday preppers who have their bunkers and are prepared to disappear for a decade. Most want to create an island where they can exist on their own, never going to church, as it is too far and planning to rarely see their neighbors.

Most likely it will break down a lot, but not everything will go. Twenty percent is likely to be left. What 20% will remain? Much depends on where in the Redoubt or elsewhere you end up. Does it have a refinery with local oil production? What does electricity depend on? Is it hydroelectric or something that requires infrastructure? Is the agriculture “on grid” or do things like irrigation, seeds, fertilization occur without the grid or transport? The answers are different for different areas of the Redoubt.

If you can find an area where there are Amish (not so much here but elsewhere in the USA), food won’t be a problem. Doing something the Amish need or even want as a luxury that you can trade them for food will be useful. (Can you make plow blades, build wagons and carts, weave, or even provide manual farm labor?)

However, you need to figure this out now. It is very difficult to do from the outside, and you won’t know how many solar panels you need before or what size windmill. It differs across the Redoubt, and they won’t be available after the crash. If you are already there, you can start building your personal para-grid infrastructure while renting and then transplant it when you find your ultimate final location.

You need to ask or arrange work that you can do over the Internet, remotely, or have a portable skill. You need to sell your house now, not before the economy crashes and you can’t. Rent if you must. You need to find a location within the Redoubt and move there. College towns and many others have full broadband. It will be easier to look within a few hours drive from where you are already working (and have found a credit union or bank, doctor, post office, et cetera) than having to take long drive vacations to scout and manage things. You’ll need to know which cell phone networks work (4G, 1xRTT?) as you drive around your targeted area and have access to that service? Is there broadband, fiber, or will you have to go to satellite for your Internet access? Are there active Ham clubs nearby? These and more are things you will need to resolve and are easier done from nearby.

Moving to the area where you want to end up has several benefits:

  1. Some benefits of being a citizen of a particular state only accrue after you’ve been there for a year. Start the clock.
  2. Your vote counts as soon as you move in. If every Patriot in Puget Sound moved across the cascades, there would be no sheriff that didn’t follow the Constitution on that side. Ask Gavin Seim if it would have helped in his area.
  3. You will know the area. You’ll learn which doctors will call the authorities if you don’t immediately give your kids 24 vaccinations and which doctors have midwives and dulas in their rolodex. You find where the different stores are for hardware, groceries, and other supplies. You find churches, where to get your car repaired and hair cut and more.
  4. You won’t be a stranger when the crash comes. Would you believe someone who just showed up? If you are already active in the community, renting in town, then move nearby, you aren’t such an outsider.
  5. You can find what is useful. As I said, it will be 20% that remains. Many places have community supported agriculture (CSA). If other farmers are already working hard providing food and will be able to do so even if the grid fails (with help?), why do it yourself? Can you fish or hunt? Maybe you can buy a freeze-dryer so you can supply things in the winter.
  6. This is perhaps the most important; you can find a priest or pastor aligned with your beliefs and arrange to be near them. I can walk to daily mass (I’m Catholic). It might take a few more minutes if there is a blizzard, but I can go. If I was two hours away on a clear day, I wouldn’t be going. If he isn’t prepping already, you can support him.

Dehydrate, can, freeze-dry, preserve for the winter the CSA food available in the late summer and fall. Find something they need that you can provide better than they can do themselves. Do your day job, but also become indispensable to the community after the crash. You will have solar power. You will have the capability of machining metal. You will be able to communicate across the world. I’ve not mentioned creating a totally independent farm. That is really, really, hard, and if you are spending eight hours a day at a computer keyboard, are you going to be able to tend to your Nigerian Dwarf goats to milk them. (Here, there is little CSA milk. Were I to do ranching, it would be them or cows bred for milk not meat.) How is the medical infrastructure? There is oil production and a refinery. Paying $100/gal gasoline is different than no gasoline.

At my location, food is unlikely to be a problem, and electricity is via hydro. There is little milk or dairy, little CSA or local milk and cheese. There is a comm infrastructure, but I can contribute. Other areas are completely different. They may have corn but few other vegetables. They may have little meat, and hunting will be remote. Some are dependent on high-maintenance, high-tech electricity. In some places, water is difficult or expensive to obtain. Some places are easily defensible (hence “redoubt”), others will be overrun easily. Some places are a blue pimple, some are pure red. That you can investigate now. You need to figure out where you fit in in your area.

Remember your pastor, who might not be as well prepared. If he is miles away, can you support him? If you are Catholic, you will have to prep or grow wheat and grapes for communion. That is why we need to create a parallel, robust “grid” of our own.

After TEOTWAWKI, it might be something we barely notice. The Amish will only notice most of their customers have no means of paying, with cash, barter, or other trade. We can build our own “grid”. As we reject the “culture of death”, we can build a culture of life and civilization, including our own backup grid. Think about what parts of the grid the government is dependent on.


I want to go on a tangent here for a bit and discuss communications. Everyone needs it, especially in a TEOTWAWKI situation, and it can be something valuable to you can provide also if your neighbors don’t have it to keep informed. It is also a good way to build relationship in your new community.

CB Radios require no FCC license and can do up to 12 watts on SSB (4 on AM), and given the right sunspot situation (ask the Creator of the sun to provide this) it can bounce on the ionosphere like 10 meter, though the FCC says you can’t intentionally try to contact someone over 160 miles away. Still, you can listen in on a conversation between neighbors in Idaho, even when you are near the east coast.

For the non-technical, the carrier is merely a waste of power. Transmitting on both sidebands is also a waste. When you take the audio and apply it to the radio wave generator, it generates two sidebands. One sideband is at a higher frequency, and one on a lower frequency; they’re the carrier frequence plus the audio and minus the audio. So, if you eliminate the redundant signal, you need only one sideband. I would suggest Channel 3, upper sideband for Redoubt business.

If you have been thinking of helping AMRRON, you don’t have to wait. Ask a trucker. The Galaxy line of CBs has one that does SSB, there maybe better. The amateur radio operators can help you with antennas (NVIS v.s. omni) so your 12 watts go as far as possible. An infrastructure can be created for comms, including longer distance. Get a mobile, but use it as a base station.

You can do this, and you don’t have to have or give a callsign. Given the trucker usage, think of what you could do simply by driving your vehicle near the top of the local mountain or high ground so you can have your conversation heard over a very large valley.

This is not to dismiss FRS or actual Ham radio, but many don’t have the time to study, and UHF doesn’t travel beyond line-of-sight. I suggest implementing communications that involves “both-and”, rather than “either-or”.

The Practical

There are practice nets, but they are generally for Hams.

Truckers are thankful for information on speed traps and other such road activity. Idaho’s State Patrol has just had Desert Snow Training – so I think they are “fair game“. Also the Spokane County Sheriff. They need training, not SPLC or forefeiture training. We could all practice daily by listening to CB channel 19 and forwarding the “smokey” reports to truckers. They can report speed traps, and you can relay them. Also, if there is something of an emergency, even a disabled vehicle, CB Channel 9 can be used to report it.

We could also shut down Idaho Desert Snow, at least where we have coverage. Do not think it is just about drugs. The police see you change lanes without signaling, pull you over, and either say they smell marijuana or that your air freshener is suspicious. Then, they ask if you consent to a search. If you don’t consent, they will get a drug dog, which signals 95% of the time though only 40% of the time drugs are found. Additionally, they will use civil forfeiture to seize any cash, guns, or anything else, and because it is civil, it only requires probable cause. Your cash and guns are under arrest, not you. It is deep within the Redoubt. “The program is designed to educate people about policing by funding such events as the Citizens’ Academy as well as further educating the public about the use of drug/SEIZURE dogs within the confines of community policing.” (emphasis added). “An Idaho law enforcement officer known for his “Tall Cop Says Stop” workshops…”

We could also return the favor of the Spokane Sheriff who has said we are worse than ISIS. If you see something, say something… on the CB. I don’t like everything about, but they advocate cop watching. PINAC says to film the police. Maybe that pastor would still be alive if we had a network that kept track of and recorded (live streamed to cloud storage) the police.

We should consider carefully. However, just like a gun you have not practiced with or the other practice scenarios necessary, if you don’t often use your radios you aren’t really training and won’t really be ready. If the leadership of the American Redoubt considers it reasonable, we should be practicing all the time or at least until the agencies have CSPOA training and have renounced that they think we are the enemy and want to protect and serve and follow the Constitution. This would be a live, continuous test. If the police come around to recognizing the Constitution, we can then turn around and help them.

One note: I sympathize with the western Redoubt, as they are already fighting the war. Washington has to contend with the Puget Sound area. Oregon contends with Portland, Salem, and so forth, and unless there is a constitutional Sheriff it can get bad for them. Idaho has many bad cops that want to raise revenue instead of protecting rights. I’m east of that (intentionally!). That should go into the decision. It would have been more convenient to be in the west Redoubt, but then I might have to fight. In the east, well, the police are “peace officers”, many openly (constitutional) carry, and I don’t have to push or fight. That must also go into the decision. Some places you might have to actively fight, even if infrequently. Other places are already where you can fit in.

Lot only escaped with his daughters. His wife looked back and ended up as a pillar of salt. Had he left earlier…