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”. Today features and interesting article with a monetary breakdown of the west. It is definitely worth a read.

Fix NICS – Gun Control in Disguise

Please contact your congressional representatives today and insist that they oppose H.R. 4909, which includes the horribly flawed “Fix NICS” bill that targets veterans. For some details, see this brief announcement from Congressman Massie.

Firearms – Time and Energy vs Money

Reader T.J. sent this video link in to Reid Henrichs of Valor Ridge talking about just purchasing guns vs actually training with them. We’ve all been with friends (or in a gun store) where people talk about the various firearms that they own. How many conversations have you had with these same people about what kind or how much training you’ve done with those firearms? Just from the standpoint of practicality, if you don’t train with a firearm, what good does it do you? A defensive weapon is more likely to be taken from you and used against you if you don’t know how to use it. A long distance platform is worthless if you can’t hit anything with it. Take the time to train. Spend money on it if you need to!

Doomsday Meal Kit

Yep, despite the media bias painting preppers as freaks, it would appear that prepping is now mainstream. Vendors won’t cater to it if it doesn’t make money for them. Interestingly enough Fox News has an article on how Costco will sell you a year’s supply of survival food for a family of four for a mere $6000. That sort of pokes a stick in the eye of the economic recovery lie. I suppose if you want a fairly deep pantry fast and you have the money to burn, it will get you a start on food, but I’d rather buy a freeze dryer and raw ingredients for that kind of money. Note that food is just one part of the mantra “beans, Band-aids, and bullets” too. Thanks to T.J. for the link.

Monetary Breakdown of the West

Reader H.L. sent in this article on a monetary breakdown of western civilization. Have you wondered how nearly the entire world got itself into this practically unrecoverable debt? The article covers the time period from the Classical Gold Standard (1815-1914), Both World Wars, The Gold-Exchange Standard, the advent of fluctuating fiat currencies, Breton Woods, current fiat currencies and much more. It’s a well researched, but palatable history of western finance. Do yourself a favor and get educated on this mess. It is a lengthy article, but can be read in about 30 minutes of uninterrupted time and it is understandable.

Disease X

Scientists are now warning of a new and deadly disease the could kill millions around the world. There is just one problem with the diagnosis – the disease doesn’t exist yet. It would appear that the prepping mantra “expect the unexpected” has now seeped into the scientific world. The World Health Organization has decided to list the unknown pathogen in their reports and analysis to recognize that the disease has not caused any problems before. It is listed right alongside the standard threats of Ebola, SARS, and Zika. While it seems odd that they would put such emphasis on an unknown and undocumented (and unproven) disease, the WHO claims that they just want to remain flexible in their planning. Thanks to reader B.F. for the link.

Fired Because of CCW Permit

This may be a story to keep an eye on. A Virginian woman claims she was fired as a social worker because she obtained a CCW permit. According to her claims, Roanoke City Social Services claimed she was a “safety risk to the building” because the permit proves she owned a firearm. The details are sketchy and there are lawyers involved already, but if taken at face value, she was unconstitutionally fired. In stories like these, there is usually more involved, but we will be keeping an eye on this as it develops. Thanks to reader S.P. for the link.

Surviving on Water Vapor

Wired magazine has an article on hydropanels. This is technology that literally sucks usable water from the water vapor in the air. Survivalists have long known about this capability and even the military teaches a rudimentary form of deriving water from water vapor in their survival courses using equipment that you have on hand (plastic sheeting or poncho). Now commercial companies are getting into the act with viable products that can produce enough water to keep you alive at reasonable prices. Note that this only keeps you alive. It’s not near enough water to farm or bathe in. Thanks to G.P.

o o o

Please send your news tips to HJL. (Either via e-mail of via our Contact form.) These are often especially relevant, because they come from folks who watch news that is important to them. Due to their diligence and focus, we benefit from fresh “on target” news. We often “get the scoop” on news that is most likely ignored (or reported late) by mainstream American news outlets. Thanks!


  1. “A defensive weapon is more likely to be taken from you and used against you if you don’t know how to use it.”

    Wow!! I never expected to see one of the worst fallacies spouted by the anti-gun crowd repeated here on survival blog!
    My grandmother is untrained in firearms use, but she’ll pull the trigger on that pistol or shotgun if someone breaks into her home.
    The odds of an untrained person surviving an attack with a firearm at their disposal is much higher than if they were unarmed.

    Training is very important, but let’s not be scaremongering people out of owning a firearm, please.

    1. @Ned2,
      And if you don’t know how to use the firearm, how will you turn the safety off and pull the trigger in time? It’s not a “fallacy”. While the anti-gun crowd certainly takes it to the extreme, I can’t tell you how many times I have worked with people who had no clue on how their firearm actually worked. How do you turn the safety off? Will the gun fire if the magazine is removed? What if the other person grabs the gun? All of these are things that can be answered with training, but without that intimate knowledge of your weapon, it mights as well be a rock when you need it the most. As a liscensed firearms instructor, the most common course of action I see on a hammer fired handgun is:

      1. Point the gun, pull the trigger
      2. When the gun doesn’t go off because the safety is on, look at the gun and push the most obvious button.This button is usually the magazine rease.
      3. Point the gun and pull the trugger.
      4. Look at the gun and wonder why it didn’t go off again.
      5. Disengage the safety lever
      6. Point the gun and pull the trigger.
      7. Look at the gun and wonder why it didn’t go off again.
      8. At this point, only about 30% of the people who are in this situation will re-seat the magazine and pull the trigger a third time.

      How long does this process take? How long do you have when seconds count. If you’re doing this now, what about when the adrenaline is pumping and the fear is real?
      Just as the anti-gun crowd emphasize this, the gun crowd minimizes it. Both are fallacies. If you don’t train with your weapon, it’s pretty useless except as pretty paper weight. Granted, the modern plastic striker fired weapon alleviates much of this issue as does a revolver, but owning a weapon without training is dangerous at best. It provides a false sense of security at worst.

      1. Hugh, I agree with you based on my own experience. When I was still in my teens I was attacked by a man with a handgun. There was 1 brief moment when I could have grabbed the gun, but didn’t because I knew nothing of handguns & didn’t know if the safety was on or where to find it. When I talked with a policeman after the man was caught, I told him that. He gave me an odd look & said: “It was a revolver – it doesn’t have a safety.” That made me decide to learn all I could about guns.

    2. I don’t think they intended to convey the idea that having a gun without extensive training guarantees you will fail when tested. I think they simply meant that without training, you,are more likely to fail when tested. That said, we need to be careful not to discourage gun ownership, even accidentally. A gun owner, trained or not, is more likely to be a political ally. And we need those.

  2. $6000 for a year’s supply of food for a family of 4? That boils down to $1.37 per person per meal. I can barely do that with fresh food. Most people spend way more. I’d be questioning how many calories are in that package. My bet is on not enough.

    1. $6000 buys a lot of rice,beans,oatmeal,salt,sugar,some dehydrated and some “fancy” freezedried. Throw in some seeds for fresh veggies and you have money left over for the water .

      1. I was right. 1300 calories per person per day. Assuming 2 kids, and 2000 calories per day for mom and dad, that leaves 600 each for the kids. Definitely not enough.

  3. I can’t tell you how many times a student has drawn his pistol, pointed it at the threat, and pressed the trigger. Nothing. A queer look appears on their faces. Our main instructor bellows, “Boy, those manual safeties work really GOOD, don’t they??” Student finally figures it out, and remedies the problem. But had that been a real incident, the student likely would not have survived.
    On more than one occasion in training, a malfunction or unseated magazine will raise its ugly head when I am running a drill. The solution is to drop the unusable pistol and retrieve a backup pistol (exactly the same model as the primary) and finish the drill. The Glock solves all of the problems related to the manual safety, ambidextrous safeties, etc. Draw and fire….right or left hand. Works the same way.
    Training is everything.

  4. Disease X:

    There has been this fantasy among the elitists that this planet needs to shed all but 500 million people. Of course the elites will be the 500 million. What better way to achieve their goal than to create a new and extremely deadly disease. The elites will get the vaccine, the rest of us just die. What they never figure out is that there are always unintended consequences to there elitist fantasies. Like a vaccine that doesn’t work, or their created disease decides to mutate into something they can no longer control. OOPS.

    Sound like a conspiracy theory? Maybe. But what better ploy than “plan” for a disease that supposedly doesn’t exist yet and give a vaccine in preparation. The vaccine will likely be worse than the disease, intentionally so. They are getting impatient. We’re such an inconvenience to them.

    Or, maybe not. We’ll see.

  5. Training?!! If you can’t run your weapon, you’re already behind the power curve. People that are not totally competent with their firearms must be trained by people that know how.

    Now, those that are competent, really need quality training. Force on force, scenario, and small arms combat training. Classroom legal instruction, as well as basic first aid and trauma treatment.

    If you don’t think any of this sounds like something you are willing to do, it’s ok. Social Darwinism will take of you… One way or the other.

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