Preparedness Notes for Thursday — May 7, 2020

On May 7, 1992, a 203-year-old proposed constitutional amendment barring the U.S. Congress from giving itself a midterm pay raise was ratified—the 27th Amendment.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 88 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A gift certificate from Quantum Harvest LLC (up to a $2,200 value) good for 12% off the purchase of any of their sun-tracking models, and 10% off the purchase price of any of their other models.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical 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,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A Front Sight Lifetime Diamond Membership, providing lifetime free training at any Front Sight Nevada course, with no limit on repeating classes. This prize is courtesy of a SurvivalBlog reader who prefers to be anonymous.
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  4. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from (a $240 value).
  5. An assortment of products along with a one hour consultation on health and wellness from Pruitt’s Tree Resin (a $265 value).

Third Prize:

  1. Three sets each of made-in-USA regular and wide-mouth reusable canning lids. (This is a total of 300 lids and 600 gaskets.) This prize is courtesy of Harvest Guard (a $270 value)
  2. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  3. Naturally Cozy is donating a “Prepper Pack” Menstrual Kit.  This kit contains 18 pads and it comes vacuum sealed for long term storage or slips easily into a bugout bag.  The value of this kit is $220.
  4. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  5. A transferable $100 purchase credit from Elk Creek Company, toward the purchase of any pre-1899 antique gun. There is no paperwork required for delivery of pre-1899 guns into most states, making them the last bastion of firearms purchasing privacy!

Round 88 ends on May 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.


  1. In footnote number one of “The Embarrassing Second Amendment” (Yale Law Journal, 1989), Sanford Levinson wrote:

    It is not irrelevant that the Bill of Rights submitted to the states in 1789 included not only what are now the first ten Amendments, but also two others. Indeed, what we call the First Amendment was only the third one of the list submitted to the states. The initial “first amendment” in fact concerned the future size of the House of Representatives, a topic of no small importance to the Anti-Federalists, who were appalled by the smallness of the House seemingly envisioned by the Philadelphia framers. The second prohibited any pay raise voted by members of Congress to themselves from taking effect until an election “shall have intervened.” See J. Goebel, 1 The Oliver Wendell Holmes Devise History of the Supreme Court of the United States: Antecedents and Beginnings to 1801, at 442 n.162 (1971). Had all of the initial twelve proposals been ratified, we would, it is possible, have a dramatically different cognitive map of the Bill of Rights. At the very least, one would neither hear defenses of the “preferred” status of freedom of speech framed in terms of the “firstness” of (what we know as) the First Amendment, nor the wholly invalid inference drawn from that “firstness” of some special intention of the Framers to safeguard the particular rights laid out there.

  2. US Senators and US House Representatives; $174,000 is the base salary received each year. (according to Wikipedia). +The people in power positions receive an extra premium in their paycheck.

    Figures are on the Internet for the amount of money spent to win a political office.
    From OpenSecrets Org site, =
    In 2016, the average cost of winning a Senate seat $19.4 million,
    The average winning House candidate had spent $1.3 million in 2016.

    The money raised and spent to become elected to a political office is enormous. The cost to a loser is money just wasted.

    The politicians have to raise the money, somehow.
    There has always been crooks in Congress. Like Benedict Arnold, many people in politics will >sell out America. … If the Fake News was relatively accurate in reporting about our politicians, we’d hear about such people as China Joe Biden and Beijing Pelosi.

    The big International businesses sending American Jobs overseas to China and other countries have >Trillions of dollars at stake with each election. For decades now, US dollars and jobs have been leaving the USA and moving to places like China.

    Germany, until Donald J Trump, was able to send cars to the USA >without a tariff worry. Now, there is a threat to Germany; build more cars in the USA or face tariffs. The threat of tariffs is being applied to foreign countries.

    +Donald J Trump has started >requiring foreign countries to fulfill their Treaty Obligations; they are obligated to help pay for their own share for military defenses. For years the USA was providing for the military defense of other countries.

    In the news constantly are stories about crooked politicians receiving bribes and payoffs. The politicians are caught with envelopes of cash, and money filled campaign funds converted to the politicians own use.

    What’s the point of saying the obvious truth?
    Maybe, another characteristic for a retreat location for readers of Survivalblog; check the relative honesty of politicians in the Redoubt region. … Does your local politician vote for the USA first, or do they vote for China and Mexico to be first?

  3. Benedict Arnold was not in CONgress,he was a army officer. To quote Huey Long “Politicans shouldn’t get paid,if they aren’t smart enough to get rich there they are too stupid”(paraphrased). Tarrifs no longer work as they are supposed to,as barriers to protect domestic markets/industries, they function as a tax on US consumers. If you wanted to hurt foreign businesses,force them to sell below production costs and include US parts/ products bought at market prices(reverse dumping). German cars had heavy tarrifs on them till NAFTA eliminated them,now they are building lower quality to be in line with US market.

  4. Mr. Rawles, recently I read your post about how replicas of pre-1899 firearms do not require an FFL if they are chambered in obsolete calibers. What calibers are considered obsolete? is there a list?

    1. There is not a definitive list, because occasionally a caliber will go back into production from a U.S. manufacturer. (From what I’ve heard from the ATF, the small production from “boutique” handloaders doesn’t count as “manufacturing” for “normal channels of commerce.”)

      But one good bet is .45-90, which hasn’t been regularly produced since the 1930s.

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