The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods:

SurvivalBlog presents another edition of The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods— a collection of news bits and pieces that are relevant to the modern survivalist and prepper from “HJL”. Given the tumultuous political landscape and the deeply divided America, the time may draw near where you have to fight against those who wish to enslave you. Check out the entry “Forest Brothers” below.

Forest Brothers

After the second World War, a new type of war emerged. Soldiers from across the Baltics who had fought on both sides of the war disappeared into the forests to wage a bloody guerrilla war against the occupying Soviet forces. The Forest Brothers — Fight for the Baltics is a short Docu-drama on YouTube that tells the story of these courageous people. When the time comes…

Outdoor Kitchens

Reader T.J. sent in this article on designing an outdoor kitchen for sustainability. Under the assumption that you have no electricity for A/C and need to keep the house as cool as possible, an outdoor kitchen is an excellent idea. A simple wood-fired cooking stove can provide the necessary base and easy access to your garden completes it. However, one thing to keep in mind, cooking odors are incredibly hard to hide and can travel a significant distance. When all of your neighbors have nothing in their pantry, it’s like hanging a shingle out: Joe’s Diner – All You Can Eat.

Private Property

An example of the state of private property in the United States reared it’s ugly head. A homeless man was bequeathed a significant inheritance by his mother. He took a good portion of that inheritance and purchased an RV as temporary living quarters, a container to store construction equipment, and finally, a front-end loader. His stated purpose was to construct his own home. Apparently, one of his neighbors took exception to the presence of the RV and container and filed a complaint. Now he finds himself evicted from his own land by a county ordinance that allows neither the container nor the RV without the presence of an established home.

Health Insurance

Republicans in Congress are spineless — so says an article in American Thinker. Obamacare was passed without a single Republican vote when the Democrats held Congress, the Senate, and the presidency. Once the Republicans held the House and Senate, they made over 60 attempts to repeal Obamacare. Several of those attempts actually made it all the way to the President’s desk where He vetoed them. Now, the Republicans hold the House, the Senate, and the presidency, and they can’t agree on one attempt to repeal Obamacare…not even one! If you thought that any of the politicians in office had your best interest at heart (or even that of their state’s or the nation), this should be a wake-up call.

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The large insurance companies are in on the scam as well. Have you noticed that they are all against any sort of plan that allows you to buy a less expensive insurance policy that only contains what you want or need in it? The U.S. economy thrived for 230 years before Obamacare. Now you are expected to believe that less expensive insurance will tank it?

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So how does that impact you as a prepper? First, you have to realize that health insurance is not a right. It’s a service provided by someone. Since when does the government have the right to force someone (excluding the obviously questionable area of criminal incarceration) to provide that service for you? Or even force you to partake of that service? Didn’t that go the way of the dodo bird when slavery was made illegal? Second, you need to own your own health care. There are obviously going to be issues and procedures that you need help with, but you should have the ability to negotiate that service from someone, not demand it — and do so at the actual cost, not some super inflated, made-up cost. For the smaller things, you should be able to manage your own health. There should be no such thing as free healthcare.

Us vs Them

A continuation of the “us vs them” policy perpetuated by both sides, the Dallas County Commissioner voted against honoring murdered officers, saying they brought it upon themselves. This  self-destructive, self-fulfilling downward spiral must be stopped. Officers must stop the jack-booted, thuggish tactics and the leaders of the community must quit pushing for divisiveness. The people must start acting like humans rather than animals. There can be no healing in our nation without a de-escalation of this ridiculous narrative.



  1. Regarding Dallas, I am a DPD officer and Price is a slimeball leftist. The city of Dallas is in a huge crisis due to the pension and the shooting of 14 police officers, 5 of which died. There are officers leaving the city in droves for other jobs, not even continuing law enforcement. I am even currently looking because it’s so bad.
    The city of Dallas is the only city left in the US with a population over 1 million not currently under a DOJ consent decree. This is driving the “outlook” of the Police Depts policies for officers which makes the job harder and ineffective. In my opinion the city is going to turn into another Detroit/Baltimore/Chicago due to leftist policies.

  2. Health care is a right. To lose your house and declare bankruptcy simply because you had a heart attack and bypass is lunacy. The USA is the sole industrial country in the world without state medical coverage. Time to move into the 21st century and have universal government health care and to h with the greedy insurance companies.

    1. Why do you believe that you have a “right” to the fruits of “my” labor? Shouldn’t you have to pay for my labor like everyone else? You have a right to manage your own health care, but you do not have a right to demand that I pay for your healthcare.

      1. Hugh,

        I’m a pragmatist, so I think rights are whatever a society can enforceably claim they are. Americans can’t claim healthcare is a right. I grew up without insurance, so I’m quite certain about that.

        Tax supported roads, police, firefighters and armies aren’t rights either. But we all live longer and better because we share the cost of these services rather than trying to go buy our own. I think healthcare ought to be in the same category.

        To me, this suggests there can be libertarian case for pooling resources for health care. Rather than answer the question in terms of why should you, Hugh, subsidize the healthcare of others, I’ll answer in terms I have better standing to address.

        That is: why should somebody like, let’s say, current me, who’s making decent money, subsidize past me, a child of the working poor. And I’d say because the aggregate of past me is a society where people don’t see doctors for minor things. Those minor things turn into worse things that eventually the system has to pay for in un-paid medical bills. And in a society like this people go bankrupt all the time when they get sick and — this isn’t melodrama it’s happening now — they end up dying way, way earlier than they should.

        People who could otherwise be helping to pay their fair share of my roads and my cops and my schools and everything else suddenly aren’t paying their fair share because they’re needlessly sick or dead. There are plenty of Christian arguments for why this is bad, too, and I tend to agree with them. But if the moral stuff isn’t convincing, I think there’s a pretty good case that keeping more people healthy and productive means we all do better.



        1. @DcPratt, I’m not even talking about roads and other “utilities”. They aren’t the same thing as health care. However, a case can be made that road maintenance can be done on a voluntary basis (toll roads & bridges). If you don’t want city water, sewer, or electricity, don’t hook up to them. Those are all voluntary taxes because you agree when you live there to pay for those. You can even get rid of them in many places. Go off-grid solar and you don’t pay for the electricty through the utility company (though you do pay in infrastructure costs, but again, it’s on a voluntary basis.)
          There is no Christian moral argument on state sponsored, single-payer health care. We don’t live under a theocracy and as such, there is no moral argument that you can steal from me to pay for someone else. It’s theft, no matter how you cut it. What is missing is the personal responsibility aspect. It’s the same with prepping. If you go on yearly vacations to Disney Land, buy a new car every year, chain smoke, et cetera and I save my money, invest in preps, keep a car until it costs more to maintain than it’s worth, et cetera, why do you feel that I am somehow responsible for bailing you out? Life doesn’t work that way and will always end in failure if that’s the direction that is pursued.
          What is a Christian moral argument is “voluntary” giving to take care of the sick, the widows and orphans and those that otherwise can’t help themselves. There is no moral mandate to “give” anyone anything. There is a moral mandate to help them. (You know, allow them to glean the corners of the field).
          There is certainly no moral mandate to help someone game the system so they don’t have to work, yet can enjoy all of the benefits that a careful and wise person enjoys. In any case, the only moral argument is that it is on a voluntary basis as to whether you help them or not.
          Schools and cops are another matter entirely. Our modern system of education and law enforcement is based upon the Prussian model and is entirely oriented towards indoctrination and control. Again, as you can plainly see in our society, it is a model destined for failure because it never address the root causes of evil.

          1. I think principled people can disagree on this question, (and probably will until the cows come home). A couple final thoughts. Where I ended up living is mix of choice, necessity, and luck. I suspect it’s like that for quite a few people. I would suggest that, because everybody ultimately has to live someplace, the voluntary taxes you mention aren’t probably as voluntary as we’d like them to be. And we certainly can’t opt out of the taxes that support our military, and I’m glad. I’d argue that everybody here lives safer and freer because we share this cost. Despite the flaws of public education and police, I’d rather have them than not. I feel that way about universal health care, too. There’s nothing in the bible about state-sponsored universal health care, that’s true enough. There’s nothing in there about modern nation-states or iPhones or firearms either. It’s for each person to decide how to match their principles up with world we’ve got. I happen to think that paying some more of my tax dollars to heal the sick conforms with my moral principles, and my analysis is that there’s a net economic benefit to society to boot. YMMV.

          2. @DcPratt,
            Actually, to say that “There is nothing in the Bible about nation-states or iPhones or firearms” is a straw-man argument. Of course those are not mentioned — It’s impossible to cover “specific” items because those change with the times. What is covered is the principles. Theft (helping yourself to the labors of another) is most certainly listed in the Bible. There are some basic provisions that are provided for in the Constitution and the means to provide for those basic provisions (military, interstate commerce, et cetera). Because the Federal government is defined by the constitution, anything beyond that is not in it’s purview. Despite Justice Roberts rewriting the “law” to support universal healthcare, it is not in the purview of the Constitution and thus not an allowed power of the Federal Government. That is theft of time/money/labor from the common man.
            It is certainly OK for you to want to contribute some of your hard earned money to support whatever causes you want to. What you, or anyone else, does not have a right to do is impose those same contributions upon me. You have the right to manage your own health care. You do not have the right to manage my health care, nor make me pay for your health care. If I choose to give some of my time/money/labor in support of your health care, that is OK and well within my “rights”, but withholding that money is also well within my rights.

    2. Health care is not a right. BUT, earning your own money to pay for health care, and taking care of your own health is. Why should anyone else pay for my health care when many of my problems are voluntary (such as being obese)? Why should anyone else pay for my health care because I smoked and murdered my lungs or drank and killed my liver? Certainly, not all all health problems are self caused but many are. Should someone else pay for my auto insurance or my house insurance?

    3. The true purpose of “universal health care” is to militarize a society to engage in future warfare. The first example is Japan before WW2. You do not have a “right” to others work without agreement,that is slavery!

    4. A right? You have the right to pursue happiness in your life but no right to the labor of others. Good lord, where do you people learn that dribble you said?

  3. Re: Republicans are spineless. Please ask yourself if the corruption in Washington is due to those in office or is it really the result of the corruption of the hearts of the people who put them there election after election. Rinos and Dumbcrats too numerous to mention know what will get them returned to their powerful, cushy positions and they (with pitifully few exceptions) do exactly what is necessary to accomplish that; the Republic be da**ed.

  4. @Miles12: Spot on. I live down the road in the Rose Capital and it is crystal clear that as Texas has emphasized growth over all else, those being imported or fleeing high taxation States have brought their liberal politics with them; turning our State more and more “blue”. Dallas, Austin, El Paso, San Antonio and Corpus are all lost. P-correctness and Washington mandates are nails in the coffin. The time for the Tree of LIBERTY to be refreshed is fast approaching.

  5. HEY, what about Clem Smith? Who? The formerly homeless man who is trying to build on his own property, but he has been evicted by the county. He was temporarily living in an RV while he builds his house on his own , fully paid for property. He has a container to store supplies, front end loader, dump truck, car. Code enforcement and a pain in the @*! neighbor have kicked him out. He can’t have these “accessories” on his vacant land until he builds his house. How do you build the house without any of this equipment? He lives in Conifer, Colorado. How many of you have experienced this kind of treatment from your community and neighbors? Are there any areas to settle any more where you can just be left alone to live peacefully any more? Please respond. I am looking for such a paradise. I have also shared this opinion with the Conifer Chamber of Commerce. You do what your heart tells you is right. Property rights should be important to this readership.

  6. Friends,

    We had a perfectly fine health care system until the Feds intervened. Medicare, medicaid, and now the half dozen or more interventions into the private lives of the citizens of this society and the health of us all.
    Now folks say we should have universal healthcare paid for by the government. Only it isn’t the government that pays. it’s the tax payer. I could much more easily pay for my own healthcare if I wasn’t being raped by the government to pay for everyone but me. As it stands, we have no real incentive to keep ourselves healthy, the government will pay for it. Universal healthcare has the intended, repeat, intended side effect that the government also gets to claim the power of God, the power of life and death over us all. Should you get sick, desperately sick, then some bureaucrat or group of bureaucrats will decide if it is cost effective to keep you alive or not.

    As for me, I know that God has that power over my life and I accept that fact. I do not want any government, any officer of that government to claim that power over my life. That should only be between me and my God.

    Finally, you must notice, the politicians and bureaucrats are magically exempt from the laws and bureaucracies they force the rest of us to live under. Get real folks, it’s not a right, it’s force at the point of a federal gun.

  7. I agree that health care should not be right. However, persons who are bringing up the fact that certain events or conditions that could happen to an individual which would prevent said person from working, etc and becoming unable to care for themselves…well thats where the Church has always positioned itself. There will always be and always has been Christian relief organizations and people who generally want to give relief and help. Not government, not on my dime. No one should be worried they wont be cared for, we should all be thinking of how we can support local charitable organizations.

  8. Interesting discussion. Since I am a Christian, and from what I read in the book of all truth, the Bible, Jesus Christ would not sit idly by and let people die. Of course he could, and did, heal any and all who came to him ( or in the case of the Roman Centurion, heal the mans servant from afar ). The ultimate health care. So as a Christian, I believe it is morally wrong to NOT attempt to take care of the sick. Now how we do it is of course the multi billion dollar question. All I know is politicians from both parties can’t seem to come up with a workable plan. Does that surprise anyone who thinks clearly?

    1. @Bwhntr62,
      Two arguments are being munged together here. If you have the means to help and there is someone in need, you probably do have the moral obligation to help. However, you cannot force that moral obligation onto another person. it ceases to be morally right at that point. The point I’m trying to make is that as a Christian, you have the ability and the moral obligation to help another, but the government does not. Your gift must be voluntary before the Lord to have any meaning at all. An invountary gift means nothing. If, as a Christian, you demand that someone else help, then you have robbed that person of the joy and meaning of the gift. The point is not that you helped another person — it’s that you were obedient to the Lord and along the way, a person was helped and you received joy.

      1. Hugh, I appreciate the quality and civility of the discussion here. It demonstrates to me that there’s no single way a Christian need see this issue. Different premises and priorities get us to different places. In this case, a proposal to put more money towards healing the sick is an outcome I like, and this preference is rooted in my Christian upbringing. It seems like you see the core of the moral question as being whether or not the choice of helping sick people is freely taken. If I thought that was the highest value at stake, then I think we’d be on the same page. But I think the outcome of people getting sick, suffering more and dying earlier because they were born poor is more morally troubling than the possibility of constrained choice. I’m willing to accept additional constraint on my free choice if there’s a chance it will reduce this kind of suffering. And even if that means setting up a system that some freeloaders will game, that’s a trade-off I’ll take. I agree there’s little joy or meaning to be had in the “choice” to pay taxes, but I don’t think sick kids care about the moral status of the medical care they receive. I see this as a situation where, to borrow your words, we have the means to help and there is someone in need.

        1. @DcPratt,
          The elephant in the room here: Do you really believe that the government can successfully run a healthcare program? Name one program (aside from a program whose primary job is to destroy something) that the government has run well. If you want something done with maximum bureaucratic red tape, the government is your man. Someone in Washington is incapable of making a quality decision at the local level. Too many layers and too much consolidation of power. Consolidated power attracts corruption. Just look at TPTB now. Every day there are new revelations about how corrupt a representative or senator is (or worse, an unelected or appointed position.)
          No, your contributions would be far more efficient, worthwhile and effective if your local church was to take on that task for those in need around you. Even better, rather than just writing a check to pay for someone else to do the work, you would have the opportunity to actively participate. The government is the worst choice of all to run a healthcare program.

          1. A fair point. More than fair, in fact. I guess I’m a lot more optimistic than you are about whether government can be a means to improve lives. I think it’s maddeningly flawed. But it’s led to lots of things that do continue to make my life better: Interstate highways, the Global Positioning System, the National Weather Service, the advent of the Internet, the rule of law. The problem is, when government works, it tends to be invisible. When it becomes corrupt or intrusive that’s when we notice. You could be right that universalizing healthcare could make it worse. I’m optimistic enough about the value of shared action — and disgusted enough with current state of healthcare — that I think it’s worth the risk.

          2. @DcPratt,
            Just a quick note since you listed a few successful programs:

            • Interstate Highways – Created as part of the initiative to evacuate Cities under threat of nuclear war. Secondary purpose – to provide quick air landing strips under conventional invasion/war and to provide for rapid troop movement. Definitely falls under the Military programs whose primary purpose is destruction. It’s worth noting that the cost of the Interstate system is one of the primary reasons our nation is so debt laden at this point. We couldn’t afford it, but it was built anyway and the government borrowed heavily for it.
            • Global Positioning System – Again, the primary purpose was military as guidance for troops, bombs and missiles. The accuracy was only opened on the unencrypted channels after private industry had already found a way to accurize it with the addition of land based signals and the fact that the government couldn’t get enough mil-spec GPS units in the first gulf war. There was also the incident of Russia shooting down the commercial airliner that strayed off course that encouraged the president to act. Bottom line: if not for private industry making the encrypted channel irrelevant, you still wouldn’t have access to it.
            • National Weather Service – again motivated by military concerns – World War I & II had serious issues with weather causing delays and other issues on troop movements – Thus the National Weather service was born.
            • The Internet – again, a robust communications system that was designed for military usage. The Internet, as we know it, didn’t happen until the government relinquished control to private industry (Which, by the way, is where Gore’s “I invented the Internet” comment came from. He was part of the congressional committee that orchestrated that conversion.)
            • Rule of Law – Not invented by the government. In fact, the government detests this aspect and does away with it every chance they get. The rule of law was created by God (every man equal under the law and those with more power have more responsibility.) The government is a primary violator of this aspect.

            In all of these examples, even the ones that work, the government may have been the impetus for the creation, but in actual execution for it is a primary problem. When they were created and used for their primary purpose, they work. When they are found to have private or commercial use and then shared with the government, they break. For healthcare, you need look no further than the VA to understand what a mess government involvement can make.

  9. I’m ok with taxpayer funded healthcare. Lord knows the Feds are using millions for much more futile things every day. I have health insurance and yet have several frustrating health issues that go untreated due to an inability to pay the deductible and prescription costs. However, I do feel very nervous about the idea of the Feds suddenly having full control over the entire nation’s healthcare. Those politicians have not necessarily proven that the wellbeing of the people is at the forefront of thier decision making.

  10. ….turning off the comments section is becoming more and more standard on articles where race could be a factor…it’s all part of the media’s efforts to shield blacks from criticism…I think they must teach that now in journalism school.

  11. Can you name one government agency that deals with the public on a daily basis in a competent manner?
    DMV? Code Enforcement? IRS?

    Right now people like Pelosi, Schumer, Sanders and McConnel are deciding your choice for healthcare, do we really want those people making health care decisions for anyone? As it stands the IRS is being used as the stick to get people to comply and they want a bigger stick.

    Veterans have had “universal healthcare” for decades and it is not just failing it has failed veterans and taxpayers alike. That is less than 5% of our population, wanna see what happens when you toss in another 300 million in to that pool?

    Now imagine your child is sick and Nancy Pelosi says the care your child needs is too expensive (remember when king barry said maye you should just take a pill) and you should let your child die with dignity, are you really going to accept that? Even the British parents are fighting back to save their child from the State while people here are kneeling before the State with their hand out for the next promised freebie.

  12. The numer 1 reason for personal bankruptcy is health care costs. A guy works for 30 years and gets cancer or has a bypass and insurance goes poof. A simple bypass is $250,000 plus after care costs. But you have the freedom to live on the streets unlike every other first world country.

    1. I’m not sure that is accurate because it doesn’t take into account the underlying causes. Here is the list:

      • Medical expenses (62%)
      • Job Loss
      • Poor use of Credit
      • Divorce
      • Unexpected Expenses (like recover from an uninsured loss)
      • More money going out than in.

      What all of these have in common is poor planning. As a prepper, you expect that there will be something that causes you to dip into your preps. That is the whole point of prepping. But our debt driven society lives right on the edge of bankruptcy all the time. Better education and acceptance of personal responsibility is the real solution. You know you are going to get sick at some point in your life. You should be putting money aside to cover that. The only reason most major illnesses cost so much is because of the bureaucratic red tape involved and the idea that you don’t have any skin in the game.
      There really should be no such thing as routine medical insurance. There should only be catastrophic insurance.

  13. PROPERTY RIGHTS QUESTION? This is directed to anyone alive out there. Where can you go today to find a piece of property where you can build your retreat without being harrassed by unelected petty bureaucrats. I mean, live on a piece of undeveloped land while you are creating a homestead for you and your family. Yes you may need to live in an RV. Yes you will probably use containers for storage either temporarily or permanently. Containers are being used for structures around the world.Yes you had better have some heavy equipment or a very strong back. There must be a wealth of information among this readership.

    Please, ENOUGH of the health insurance. Obama had a solution, “just give grandma a pill”. Don’t worry. They say, “I’m from the government. I’m here to help”. What could go wrong. “You can read the bill AFTER you vote for it”. “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor”.

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