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 “JWR”. Our goal is to educate our readers, to help them to recognize emerging threats, and to be better prepared for both disasters and negative societal trends. You can’t mitigate a risk if you haven’t first identified a risk. Today, we look at the “free” mystery seeds arriving from mainland China.

Mystery Packages From China: Seeds and Sunglasses

Arkansas man plants mystery seeds from China, says results are wild — and now other packages are inexplicably showing up. The article opens with this:

“An Arkansas man who says he received a packet of unknown seeds from China has planted them — and KSFM-TV calls the burgeoning plant “wild.”

Packages of unsolicited seeds from China began showing up in mailboxes across the country in July, stumping agriculture and commerce officials in the process.

In early statements, the USDA said it believes that the products are part of what could be a “brushing scam,” in which people receive unsolicited items to, in turn, create fake customer reviews for the purpose of boosting sales.”

JWR’s Comment:  Yes, it is probably just a “brushing” scheme. But don’t plant any of those seeds, and don’t trust their sunglasses.

Is Kamala Harris a Marxist or a Maoist?

Linked over at the news aggregation site: GovTrack: Kamala Harris Further Left than ‘Democratic Socialist’ Bernie Sanders. Oh, and she wants your guns.

DJT Hints of COVID-19 Vaccine Before November

You’ve probably already seen this headline: Trump: COVID-19 vaccine may be ready ‘right around’ Election Day. JWR’s Comment:  Gee, a new vaccine rushed into production after only brief trials. What could possibly go wrong?

Fairfax County, Virginia Schools Tell Parents Not to Hire Tutors

Reader D.S.V. sent us this: Fairfax County, Virginia public schools tell parents not to hire tutors because it is unfair to kids whose parents can’t afford them.

The Fleeing New Yorkers

D.S.V.  also sent this one by Paul Craig Roberts: Flight From New York. His essay’s opening lines:

“New York City is in Serious trouble.  Indeed, all diverse US cities are in trouble, especially those ruled by Democrats.  The combination of coronavirus and unchecked rioting and looting have undermined their economies.

Working at home has taught businesses that they do not need to accumulate employees in office complexes.  Working at home saves money for businesses and employees.  With profits and raises harder to come by, dispensing with office complexes and commutes is cost effective.

High income people who no longer need to work in office complexes do not need expensive Manhattan brownstones and apartments.  They can escape to Mystic Connecticut or somewhere else.”

Getting Medieval in Chicago: Raise The Drawbridge!

Chaos In Chicago: Bridges Raised To Prevent Gun-Toting Looters Getting Downtown

Cities Institute COVID Checkpoints, Power Shutoffs, and Fines

Cities go to extremes with coronavirus quarantine crackdowns: Checkpoints, power shutoffs, steep fines. The article begins:

“With the daily number of coronavirus cases in the United States still hovering at about 50,000 and American deaths from the disease approaching 160,000, cities across the country are taking increasingly severe measures to force the curve of the outbreak downward — including power shutoffs, fines and more.

In perhaps the most striking example of a city’s coronavirus response, Los Angeles sent police to a large house party in the Beverly Crest neighborhood after complaints from neighbors about the number of people there. FOX 11 Los Angeles sent a news chopper — the kind normally used to document high-speed car chases — to relay video of the party from above. Police cited and impounded some of the cars in the area, but determined there were no noise violations and left. There was later a fatal shooting at the party, which prompted even more scrutiny of the incident.”

Cancer Diagnoses Plummet During COVID-19

Reader S. spotted this news headline: Cancer diagnoses plummet during COVID-19, and experts fear that could mean worse disease later.

You can send your news tips to JWR. (Either via e-mail of via our Contact form.) Thanks!


    1. Hey Matt, goatheads ARE from Asia, as are a good percentage of our invasive weeds. Linnaeus named it Tribulus terrestris L. which translates to “the tribulation of the earth.” He got that one right! If I had a dollar for every goathead flat tire I fixed on my bike as a kid, I could have retired at age 17.

      I’d be curious to know what percentage of invasive weeds have not yet arrived in the U.S. There can’t be too many. People have been coming here from all over the world for the past 400 years inadvertently bring all kinds of weed seeds with them.

      I realize this list of invasive species is far from complete but the last plant they list came here 110 years ago in 1910. Everything on the list since then are animals.

      IMO the “mystery” seeds people are receiving are just common everyday plants. Most of them are easily identifiable just from the pictures: wheat, cucurbits, etc. I doubt the Chinese or anyone else would go to the trouble of producing that many different species of dangerous GMO agricultural plants when one or two would suffice. China also denies the postmarks and return addresses are genuine so let’s hear some more about that part of the investigation by the Feds. My money and Occam’s razor says this is almost certainly a brushing scam.

      As an aside, I always find it entertaining when survival books show all the wild plants you can eat if you are lost and surviving. A good percentage of them are introduced species which grow in disturbed areas, not in the wilds where you are most likely to be lost.

  1. Good morning everyone

    Yup, the bridges in Chicago are being raised everyday to prevent “peaceful protests “
    Peaceful my a&@!,
    Radio reports yesterday saying that they are going to try rioting again this coming weekend.

    Sooo glad I moved 100+ miles from there to a rural area almost 6 years ago.

    Have a Rockin great day

    1. Hey RKRGRL, it would probably be more effective if they waited until the rioters were ON the bridges before raising them. 🙂 Remember Keanu Reeves in Chain Reaction? One of the more unique movie shots I’ve seen.

  2. I would absolutely NOT plant these seeds from china (or any for that matter).

    Have you not SEEN what they genetically engineered in Wuhan? How do you know those seeds aren’t engineered to wipe out native plant populations, resist herbicides, and only China has the cure? [Someone] must be incredibly stupid to assume they are harmless… in case you didn’t notice, we already are at war with them, just haven’t started shooting yet!

  3. A vaccine is not always an injection, we have oral polio vaccines. DJT has said he doesn’t think a new vaccine is necessary. We already have a drug [combination] that has been proven safe for over 60 years, that cures and prevents, it is hydroxicloriquine, z-pac and zinc. I think this is what may be offered. (And if people can stand in line for a “vaccine” they can stand in line to vote.) Personally, I think a vaccine for Trump [Derangement] Syndrome would be more useful, but that’s just my opinion.

    1. @VCC… A vaccine for Trump Derangement Syndrome? BRILLIANT. We need a “warp speed” effort in this direction. No time to waste!

      I wonder too if we might not be close to offering the HCQ therapeutic combination. We’ll have to see, but I am wondering. I surely hope so. If there are safety considerations, pharmacies can provide an information sheet for review with people, and even a waiver if that turns out to be important.

      In fact, we have something like this in place for flu vaccines. There are several reasons — other than broader objections to vaccines — that a person with a specific kind of health history would not be a good candidate for a flu vaccine.

      People can learn, and HCQ could be an OTC option. For those who aren’t good candidates for Azithro, there are alternatives there as well.

      If the HCQ combination were available today, I would be at my local pharmacy in a matter of mere minutes.

    1. Apparently quercetin also releases Zinc to stop the RNA virus replication. I’ve been using quercetin as well as some tonic water (natural although small quantity hydroxyclorquine). The hydroxycloroquine is a synthetic quinine developed in the 1940s when there were issues with the trees from which quinine comes from. The FDA is giving a a good lesson that Side Effects Matter! Even though I have read a relatively safe drug. I hope all learn a lesson in questioning drug/vaccine safety!!

  4. BURN THESE SEEDS! Is this just part of a multi pronged attack on the US? I do not have the answers but the threat from the Communist Chinese will have to be dealt with, They are in trouble and doing what all totalitarian governments do, expanding their reach to keep their people under control. Perhaps Bidden and Harris have answers? let’s ask them for logical solutions and not accept political platitudes, deflection and hyperbole.

  5. Re: Cities Institute COVID Checkpoints…
    At the (insert any major city here) liberal mayors direction(s), NO mask, NO entry, unless of course, you’re a peaceful protester, then come in, pass go, collect $200…

    Re: Fleeing NY’ers…
    (so blessed and lucky) our youngest daughter, who works in Manhattan, lives in Brooklyn just happened to have a week’s vacation planned to come home in the middle of March when the day before her departure, they all received the order (from her employer) to work from home. She’s been here ever since.
    We set up her old bedroom as her office and now we don’t see her between 8am-5pm (figuratively speaking). Oh, and I might add…she’s also becoming quite proficient with her M&P (9mm) Shield…Jus’sayin

  6. “because it is unfair to kids whose parents can’t afford them.” Yes, and it is also unfair that in a footrace, the swiftest usually wins; the student who excels has a better chance at a scholarship, the child who brushes her teeth twice daily usually has fewer cavities.
    The writer of the quoted line is likely a ‘redistributionist,’ one who expects (and lately, demands) equal outcomes, rather than equal opportunity.

    1. And funny now I’d seen how those wearing masks all the time are having increased dental problems. And fungal infections in the mouth. Somehow maybe it has to do with the garbage being taken back in the body rebreathing. Also, nose breathers which is most healthy, become mouth breathers and that causes dry mouth and not so healthy

  7. And MAYBE those check points will be for that Safe vaccine as well. There are ‘weigh stations’ on I 78 in NJ. They were never open (or at least I never saw them open) and took forever to build. I often thought while passing the quite large closed areas they may be for future checkpoints. Haven’t been by lately but as all these checkpoints have increased I’m quite certain they aren’t much for weight checks or they’d have been used over the years. Just an observation. As this whole corona thing came to full lockdown mode in March, I stated this to a few and was laughed at.

    1. Must read article. It is something talked about for a long time. As a ranked enlisted man I often questioned the motivations of many officers. Their action(s) often indicated that they were more concerned about their “marks” and promotions than their subordinates and mission outcomes.

      In recent years my concern has shifted to enlisted personnel. How many have infiltrated our military ranks with subversive intentions? How will the National Guard perform in a crisis? Will the military split into factions?

      These questions are the result of what we witness in today’s Pentagon. Loyalty to Trump is questionable. I’m sure our POTUS is keenly aware of this and has a plan. Well, better have a plan!

  8. The Dept Of Agriculture can’t see a pumpkin plant for what it is? REALLY? That being said, anyone who plants seeds they’ve received, unsolicited, from our GEOPOLITICAL ADVERSARY, … is [very foolish]!

    1. I have that movie on DVD. While the “intentions are good” (supposedly), Telesilla of Argos makes a good point. Have they done trials on folks with underlying health conditions that might pose a risk in taking the “vaccine” or are they just doing human trials on “perfectly healthy people”? Many people can’t take the common flu vaccine due to allergies or other health issues, what about interactions with current medications?.

      Reminds me of a recent experience where doctors “believe they are gods” and “the peasants have no right to question them”! There should be alternatives for everyone, including HCQ as an OTC alternative.

      I will not be in that line to get “THE” vaccine.

      1. They’re talking all about the forced vaccine or no travel-entrance to stores etc. I have not heard one person that has said they want and can’t wait for the rushed vaccine. Any viewpoint has been totally against it. I hope all stand up and fight against this poison. The FDA taught us to question side effects! Look how Side Effects Matter with hydroxyclorquine

        1. So long as Donald J. Trump is President, he promises there will be no federal mandate for the vaccine, and it will be a matter of choice. Will private sector companies be able to write their own rules? This is TBD. For sure court cases will challenge this very matter. As is oft and otherwise said… “Let the lawsuits begin.”

  9. I’d like to rewrite the Fairfax County, VA statement on tutors: “Out of a misplaced sense of fairness and guilt projection, we are demanding that you to cap your child’s chances of academic success by eliminating any instruction that has’t been authorized by us. Please don’t interfere with our plans to deliver your children wholly unprepared to perform, compete and succeed in the real world.”

        1. I wonder too. Really do… I suspect that “brushing” a convenient form of plausible deniability. In fact, at some level this may be going on, and may even be “cover”. I sincerely don’t believe this is the story in total. Something else is afoot. You make a great suggestion… Maybe they are trying to demonstrate that they have our information. This could be spot on. Maybe they’re trying to add to chaos and confusion, stoking fear. Maybe they are testing our delivery systems, or the behavioral responses of people.

  10. More things found on the way to other things:

    Below sung to the tune of America the Beautiful. 🙂

    For infamy, for welfare state,

    For fascist NRA.

    You gave East Europe to the Reds

    In Yalta one fine day.

    Oh Roosevelt, oh Roosevelt,

    God curse the likes of thee.

    The bums you fed

    Are glad you’re dead.

    And so, by God, are we!


    Some wisdom from the great Walter E. Williams

    Opinion: It’s wrong to call Confederate leaders “traitors”

    Is Racism Responsible for Today’s Black Problems?
    By Walter E. Williams


    Be Optimistic

    From a letter to Lew Rockwell. Very uplifting.


    The Monster Covid Mask Mash

    And, just for fun, here is the original.

  11. @CharlieK- “Fascist NRA” ??? Please explain. I do not support the current set of leaders i.e. Wayne LaPierre and the other crooks who got immensely rich off of the dues of the members, but that in no way makes the NRA a fascist organization. You sling words around like so much manure. Explain.

    1. Nathen…
      You misunderstood the song lyrics… it’s a parody being sung by a liberal to conservative(s) primarily referring to the ‘modern socialist movement’ which was basically started or implemented by FDR to end the Great Depression (not agreeing with or not about FDR, just stating history.)

    2. Fascist NRA refers to the National Recovery Act. Check out infogalactic or wikipedia, should give you an idea how fascist the NRA really was.
      This does not refer to the National Rifle Association.

  12. On a different note: Does anybody else think the ‘change shortage’ could be the government pulling the change out of circulation for a debasing of the dollar? If they hacked a zero off the dollar, the change would be worth 10X it’s current value…just wondering.

  13. Has anyone heard of a NY times podcast or article called ‘Nice White Parents’. Apparently put together by the NY Times a couple weeks ago. And BTW we are on day 150 of the 15 day pause to flatten the curve

  14. I would blame the coin shortage on bank lobbies being closed. You cant take your change in and cant send it through the drive through tube. It’s been what 5 months of nobody cashing in t heir change.

  15. We are listening to the podcast of Coast to Coast from last night Aug 12. The economist guest is stating he feeling coins not being put in circulation by mint to condition us to not using cash. Just like all of what’s going on with corona and masks etc. They want us away from cash for control. And I agree on on not bringing to banks as well. The whole cashless thing is something I’ve wondered about as well but then read mint was minting coins. I think if they are not going to circulation.

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