This weekly column is a collection of short snippets: practical self-sufficiency items, how-tos, lessons learned, tips and tricks, and news items — both from readers and from SurvivalBlog’s editors. We may select some long e-mails for posting as separate letters.
Firstly, and most importantly, there is this encouraging news: Federal Judge Overturns California’s Assault Weapons Ban. The full text of the decision can be seen here. JWR’s Comments: Be advised that the automatic stay leaves the door open for a very likely appeal, anytime in the next 25 days. So we can expect this to advance to a Ninth Circuit three-judge panel, and then if they overturn Judge Benitez’s ruling, eventually to the U.S. Supreme Court. That appeals process could take several years.
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Reader Tim J. sent this news from Florida: Nikki Fried Amends Financial Disclosure Ahead of Campaign Announcement.
“Nikki Fried’s amendment of her financial disclosure forms three days before she announced her gubernatorial candidacy made state and national news.
The report revealed Fried failed to report approximately $280,000 in income from a marijuana company she lobbied for in 2018.”
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Drug cartels attack enemies and spread terror with weaponized drones in US, Mexico.
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Reader H.L. sent this: If California is Facing a Rare Mega-Drought, Why is the State Releasing Water from Reservoirs?
Over at The Epoch Times comes this report of folks voting with their feet: Taxpayers Fleeing California Take $8.8 Billion In Gross Income to Other States.
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Reader T.C. wrote to mention that a new batch of military surplus U./S. M1 Carbines has hit the market. He indicated that he might buy one. So I sent him this advice:
“While the M1 Carbine has great collector’s and historical interest, I don’t recommend it as a survival gun. In many ways, it was “the original PDW”. It shoots an under-powered cartridge, and that ammunition is now both scarce and expensive. It uses magazines that are finicky, and it was not designed for optic mounting.
Yes, it is a handy little gun, but so is a Mini-14 or an AR-15/M4gery. And the ammo for those is much more widely available, more effective, and less expensive. Spare parts for ARs are ubiquitous. And even Mini-14 parts and magazines are more readily available.”
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Animal House mentioned these items:
There are no solutions.
“When the system is entirely corrupted and dominated by a criminal cabal, there are no systematic solutions which will change the current paradigm.”
“In normal times, the company is behind in filling perhaps 1 percent of its customers’ orders. On a recent morning, it could not complete a tenth of its orders because it was waiting for supplies to arrive.”
“These results should be cause for alarm for one simple reason: soybean oil is the most widely consumed oil in the United States,” writes Scott. “Indeed, there has been a 100-fold increase in soybean oil consumption during the 20th century. Soybean oil is everywhere, especially in the processed foods which make up a significant portion, even a majority, of the diets of most people in America and much of the rest of the developed world.”
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“After reading the article by CJ I wanted to add some information that most people do not know about.
I recently took my Tundra in for an oil change and when it was done they had a few additional issues they said I needed to take care of.
Typically when you take your vehicle to a dealer for any kind of service they always seem to find additional items that need fixing. I usually ignore their suggestions because most of the time it is just a way for them to generate additional revenue and there really are no problems. Seems like they never find any problems when your vehicle is under warranty. They only appear when you are no longer under any warranty.
This time I was sure they were pulling a scam on me because they told me I had swollen lug nuts.
I am 69 years old and been driving since I was 14 and I had never heard of anything so silly. I asked them how much to fix the problem and they said 300 dollars. I thanked them for their concern and drove home.
Once I got home I did google swollen lug nuts and found out that it is a real and serious problem.
Seems like starting in 2007 the car makers decided to change the way they make lug nuts. They all want shiny-looking lug nuts and the way they get them is by taking a lug nut and putting a shiny cap on it. You now have two different metals in contact with each other which over time results in corrosion between the two metals. This causes the cap to swell and you can no longer get your lug wrench to fit over it.
This is a serious problem if you happen to be somewhere and have a flat. You can’t change your tire because you can’t get the lug nuts off.
Amazon sells a set of half-size sockets that you can buy and hopefully one of them will fit your expanded lug nut well enough that you can get them off. But I didn’t want to fool with that. I wanted a permanent fix, something that I wouldn’t have to deal with later.
I visited a local tire store and asked them if they had heard about swollen lug nuts and they said they had experience with them. I had them order a set of single-piece chrome lug nuts for me for 90 dollars and they installed them for free. Three of my wheels came off fine but they had to work really hard on my left front wheel to remove the cap so they could get the lug nuts off.
You can find many youtube videos on how people have come up with ways to remove them but none of them are easy and most end up destroying the socket you use. Definitely something your wife or daughter wouldn’t be able to do by the side of the road.
This affects all manufacturers so if you have a vehicle newer than 2007 please check your lug nuts and if you have the two-piece ones please get them replaced, but not by the dealer. As I said my dealer wanted 300 dollars to replace them and they were going to replace them with the exact same two-piece ones that I had. Go to an auto parts store or a tire store and talk to them. I saved myself 200 dollars and got free installation by going elsewhere.
Again this was something I had never heard of before and everyone I talk to about it has never heard about it either. This isn’t something you would want to deal with in an evacuation situation or on a lonely road at night.”
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Mass scale manipulation of Twitter Trends discovered. (Thanks to C.B. for the link.)
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Reader H.L. suggested this, from the statist Washington Post: Colonial hack exposed government’s light-touch oversight of pipeline cybersecurity.
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Professor Wagstaff had this comment:
“A quick comment regarding “An Electric Car for TEOTWAWKI? by S.B.”:
First, I think this real world, hands-on report is worth a thousand theoretical articles. Thanks for that.
However, it confirms my belief that I wouldn’t want to be dependent on an electric vehicle, especially in a SHTF scenario.
The biggest problem I see is the time it takes to recharge. Also, a temporary pipeline shut down is one thing,
but what do you do if the electric grid goes down long term? Or we end up in a third world situation where
electric power is only on a few hours a day (like Cuba)?
One of these days when I have the time, I plan on building a wood fuel “gasifier” powered vehicle.
They have their own problems and limitations, but fuel is potentially everywhere.
No need to distill your corn crop into alcohol, No need to collect cooking grease and render it down into bio-diesel.
(will restaurants still be cooking up french fries when big rigs stop making food deliveries?)
For those not familiar with internal combustion engines that run on wood smoke, here is an Oak Ridge National Laboratory report, showing how to make a wood gas generator to run your tractor or whatever… ( its a simplified WW-II era “Imbert” wood gas generator). Apparently back in 1989 someone in the Gov. thought it was a good idea to get this info. out …just in case… things that make you go, hmmm…”
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Long-time blog content contributor D.S.V. sent us this link: Innocent Until Predicted Guilty.
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With the current high price of lumber, there is a lot of interest in small chainsaw mills — commonly called Alaskan Mills. Avalanche Lily spotted this review: The Seven Best Chainsaw Mills of 2021.
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And lastly… Sometimes gridlock ad Fillibustering are good things: The Senate Parliamentarian Just Ripped The Heart Out Of The Democrats’ Agenda.
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