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.
A video interview and tour with the late, great Mike Oehler: Idaho modern oldtimer builds underground & solar $50 houses. He passed away on February 2, 2016, at age 78.
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Reader J.A. wrote:
“Regarding the article “Winning The War On Weeds – Part 1, by St. Funogas” where St. Funogas uses/suggests using carpet, blankets and especially second-hand carpet/blankets in gardens — I do not recommend this mainly for two reasons (1) leeching of chemicals from the items into the garden soil/water and (2) you do not know what the second-hand items were used for or what was spilled on them, thus leeching into the garden soil/water. Leeched chemicals will be absorbed by plants. The very thing being grown to be consumed.”
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A dose of climate change truth, from Australia: Outsiders Weather and Ice Age Watch: ‘The Sun runs on 11-year cycles’.
Reader H.L. wrote, just as this column was going up:
“Watching CNN which I never do, but Clarissa Ward (in a burqa) reporting there and she is very brave and excellent reporter. It is 8+ hours later there. Cameraman and her hear gunshots (I could hear them) from the side of the one airport which is open. Taliban is NOT allowing those Afghans with Green Cards (which are on their modern-looking cell phones) to get into the airport! There are thousands and thousands of people mostly men who have helped America and other NATO countries there and they are in danger. Seems that the Taliban speaks (to me anyway) with “forked tongue”. The first female pilot in the Afghan air force on CNN, and she is in America, but her family is back there. She said IF the Taliban finds her family, she believes they will be killed. She fears that there will be NO freedoms for women. Even some of the CNN reporters today (and perhaps MSNBC which I do not watch but have checked in these last couple of mornings), are upset that the current Administration and the Pentagon messed this up big time. Even some of the Dems in Senate and the House are upset. I cannot get a good read on the numbers of Americans still over there, and the number of Afghan people who worked with us and NATO troops, but could be upwards of 300,000 is one number I heard. Green card holders historically get priority treatment, but it is not happening as they cannot get into the airport. Seems that we did NOT keep good numbers and track of Americans in that nation or those with GREEN CARDS.
It feels like Nam all over again to me. I firmly believe that those running the show here KNOW they have really screwed up and many Americans, whatever news program they watch are learning about it. Well IF THE SHOE FITS, WEAR IT.
(Trump called the chief Taliban negotiator about when US was going to leave, and after that not ONE US soldier was killed. Trump wanted us out and told the Taliban that they were NOT to kill our soldiers or ELSE, and I agree, but there is a proper way to do it. However, the current Administration has not kept to the deal and shows weakness and like the SNAKES they are, the Taliban have struck. What are we going to do now? The Chinese having a field day as are the Russians. The Chinese have already spoken directly with Taiwan and told them AMERICA WILL NOT BE THERE TO HELP YOU. China has been warning Taiwan for some time and overflying them with their jets that they will take over!)
My advice, if you can do it, PROVISION UP as the supply chain may be stretched even further than now. A huge Chinese port is basically shut down due to the Virus which has hit another large province in China. The Los Angeles Port is backed up. The virus and the weather in America and parts of South America is having an effect on certain foods. A shortage of computer chips is one thing and an inconvenience for some essential systems, but having what you NEED at hand is even more so. Also, keep some CASH on hand, in the event hackers take down credit/debit card systems.
In fact, there is a website that EBT (food stamps) can access to determine WHY their card does not work. This has been for some years. It ALWAYS shows areas of US that are out, and comments from those who could NOT buy food because their card did not work. 3 is 2, 2 is 1, 1 is none!”
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From Reader C.D., regarding the recent Combating Sheep Flock Parasites article::
“When I raised registered Katahdin Hair sheep I used the tools available to determine parasite resistance as well as weaning weights, etc. to select the individual rams that would contribute to my flocks best health and profitabilit.
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Reader S.E. wrote:
“I read with interest the Bitcoin mention the other day. Bitcoin has it’s place in the crypto world but it is trackable, operates on a slow network and there are “tainted” coins that have been marked by law enforcement as belonging to those conducting nefarious activities. If you purchase one by accident it could open up a can of worms for you and possibly your accounts.
If you are truly interested in privacy then the only coins you should consider are those that are “fungible” There are several coins that meet this criteria – two I have researched are Pirate Chain (ARRR) and Monero (XMR). I recommend that anyone investing in crypto hold at least some of these coins. They are currently trading very low so the buying time is now. Pirate Chain is currently around $4. Those with more knowledge than me believe it could be at $10 by the end of the year and has strong potential to hit $100. Monero is currently at $275. It’s expected to be at $300 by end of year with potential to hit $1000+.
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Reader B.C. suggested this: The ATF Has Declared A Trigger Is A Machine Gun & Thousands Are Now Felons.
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“Concerning outhouses, we hauled water and had an outhouse for 5 years in Alaska. Because we had small children, oldest was 18 months old when we moved in, I got a porta potty that I used in the house and dumped every couple of days. That way I didn’t have to leave toddlers unattended with a wood stove as our heat. Also, putting vinegar in it will help reduce some of the odor. It’s something to consider if mobility, weather or small children are involved.”
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Karen B. forwarded this: Handheld railgun that is as powerful as an air rifle and uses electromagnets to fire ammo at 200ft per second is set to go on sale in the US. And here is a link to the maker’s web site: Arcflash Labs. JWR’s Comment: The Gauss Rifle concept has been touted in science fiction stories for at least four decades. It is nice to see them finally hit the market.
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H.L. spotted some Draconoin (or should I say, Macronian?) COVID lockdown tyranny news, over at Jim Quinn’s The Burning Platform. It was titled Message From France. This article begins:
“Here in France it has gone to the extreme with the “Health” Pass. Last week on the 21st ALL restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and any leisure activities like sporting events, theaters, cinemas, museums, were closed to anyone without “the pass” and all staff at these places are mandated to get the jab to keep their job.
It is now a 6 Month prison sentence if you are caught inside any of these places without the pass (the man who slapped the president in the face got only 3 months prison time). Business owners will get a fine of 45,000 euros and 1 year prison sentence if they do not comply with the use of “the pass” and force all their employees to get the jab.”
And, in the same blog: India’s Ivermectin Blackout.
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Another article that was recommended by H.L.: Prepper recipes: How to make long-lasting lemon energy bars.
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Reader J.M. offered this reply to a query on emergency ultralight rappeling gear:
“Apologies for the delay on this – on 8/4 PNG responded to my article on cordage, specifically the fact that I carry 100’ of 1500lb. Kevlar line for emergencies when I’m traveling in a multi-store office building or hotel. He/she is absolutely correct about the line being thin (3mm), and that the standard climbing gear firefighters use (e.g. ascenders, descenders, etc.) won’t work with this line. It’s also very tough to use the line for climbing or descending, but it’s possible. What I’ve tested out on a steep hill and from a 2nd-story balcony (with a spotter and safety lines both times) is to loop and tie the line around a post/tree/etc. so it’s doubled up, giving me 50’ or so of working distance, clipping a lightweight 12kn carabiner to my belt, wrapping the line 3-4 times around the spine of the carabiner and, using gloves, holding the line around my back as I descend. As PNG pointed out the line will definitely try to cut through whatever it’s rubbing against as you descend, so you have to take it slowly or make the decision that a severe rope burn is better than whatever you’re trying to get away from. I’ve also used it to help me climb back up that steep slope, once again using gloves. It’s far from ideal and nothing any respectable climber or firefighter would ever condone, but it’s a last-ditch escape mechanism if my choice is that or death.”
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Tim J. sent this video: US Customs & Border Protection MQ-9 Reaper drone crash (San Angelo, Texas.)
Tim’s Comments: Although all of the footage published on this channel has never been published elsewhere prior, this footage is particularly notable, since as far as I am aware, no footage like it has ever been published. Anywhere.
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Reader Jim V. mentioned this, in the science journal Nature: The coronavirus is rife in common US deer. Jim V.’s Comments: “One simple question. Why aren’t we seeing millions of dead deer all over the roads, parks, etc.? Or hasn’t Fauci asked that question? And if he does, do we now MASK THE DEER? Shoot them all? If we shoot them and eat them, should I eat them with my mask on?”
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And, lastly, a brief video with some frank warnings on AI and other existential threats, from a Big Tech mogul: “IT’S HAPPENING, Please Prepare!” – Elon Musk LAST WARNING.