Preparedness Notes for Thursday — July 2, 2020

On July 2nd, 1937 aviator Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan disappeared over the Pacific Ocean while attempting to make the first round-the-world flight at the equator.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 89 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 www.TOUGHGRID.com (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 $150 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 89 ends on July 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.



So, You Want to Buy a Handgun… by K.E.

As a follow-up to Frog’s recent excellent article on gun-buying decisions, I thought I would drill down a bit on the handgun option – not to exclude the importance of long-guns, by any means! This article was originally quick-typed for a non-gun-owing friend at work who asked, “what kind of handgun should I buy”, when he was feeling a bit insecure due to the latest national conflagration (not the most current). As a result, this is my opinion, based on experience. I look forward to comments, as we can always learn from each other!

The two most common types of handguns are Revolvers and Semi-Auto Pistols

Revolvers
    A revolving cylinder holds cartridges – fired cartridges cases are manually extracted before reloading. Revolvers do not typically have a “safety”, but rather rely on the long, heavy (7-8 lbs) pull of the “double-action” trigger mechanism to prevent unintentional discharge. “Double action” means that the trigger pull both retracts the hammer and drops the hammer (thus firing the shot). Many revolvers can be fired in “single action” as well, by cocking the hammer manually – at this point it takes a much more light trigger pull (3-4 lbs) to drop the hammer.

 

 

 

Smith & Wesson .38 Special Revolver (5-shot)

Advantages

  1. Virtually malfunction free – can live in a drawer for years and still fire when the trigger is squeezed
  2. No safety to remember – when you squeeze the trigger, it fires.
  3. Better suited to people who don’t want to practice (though every firearm deserves practice!) because malfunction-clearing procedures are limited.
    1. Doesn’t require hand/wrist strength to “rack the slide” (as with a semi-automatic pistol).
    2. If the “Haters-of-Freedom” succeed in infringing on our Second Amendment rights, these will probably “stay legal” longer than the semi-auto pistols described below. Revolvers haven’t been as “vilified” by the press and anti-freedom officials as have the semi-autos.
    3. All things equal, revolvers handle a broader range of ammo types (deep hollow-points, shotshells, etc.) than semi-auto pistols.

Disadvantages

  1. Relatively low ammo capacity (usually 5-6 cartridges…significant in the case of multi-person home invasion).
  2. Slow re-load – must usually be loaded one cartridge at a time, after manually extracting the spent shell – even with “speed loaders” it’s a slower process.
  3. Usually “thicker” (wider) than semi-auto pistols, because the minimum width is determined by the cylinder diameter. Though they are simpler to use than semi-autos, they are still complex machines that don’t take abuse well – a drop onto a hard surface can disrupt the delicate timing which aligns a chamber of the cylinder with the barrel when a shot is fired. Not good.
Semi-Automatic Pistols
    (aka, “autoloaders” or “autopistols”, and in casual use, “automatics.”) – A magazine, inserted into the grip of the pistol, holds the cartridges – fired brass cases are automatically extracted as the slide flies back from the force the firing of a cartridge. A new cartridge is stripped from the magazine and loaded into the chamber as the slide rebounds. Most semi-auto pistols have external safeties to help prevent unintentional discharge. These safeties must be deactivated before the pistol will fire, thus requiring more practice to perform flawlessly under stress. Some pistols, such as the Glock “safe action” pistols, do not have an external safety, but rather a trigger safety that prevents discharge if the pistol is dropped, but any trigger pull will fire the weapon.

Advantages

  1. Simply stated – Firepower. Pistols in common calibers (9mm, .40S&W, .45acp, .357sig) often have magazines that hold 13-20 rounds. If the last round is the one that saves you, that’s how many you need!
  2. Quick, high-capacity reload. With practice, a full magazine can be reloaded in 1-2 seconds!
  3. Easier concealability – Many of these pistols are very thin (some less than 1”), and are easier to conceal than a revolver, whose ammo capacity is determined by the width of the cylinder
  • Most semi-autos are fairly durable.

Disadvantages

  1. Even when in perfect working order, there is more to malfunction during the semi-auto firing cycle than with a revolver.
  2. Because of the malfunction potential (e.g., failure to extract, failure to feed, etc.), it requires more thought and practice to become competent with a semi-auto than with a revolver. Note: Due to the fast-action mechanics of a semi-auto, it demands more cleaning and maintenance than a revolver. Lubrication is critical.
  3. Some ladies (and understrength men) don’t have the strength to dependably rack the slide to load, or to clear jams. Requires a firm grip to ensure the appropriate cycling of the action.
  4. As stated above, if you plan to submit to oppressive government, then be prepared for your full-capacity magazines to be restricted or outlawed. (My suggestion: Buy more… soon!)
Semi-Auto Pistols

Basic types of Semi-Auto Pistols (there are many more, but these represent most currently on the market)

  1. “1911 type” – First adopted by the US Army in 1911, this is a single action only (the hammer must be cocked manually, or by the slide in the course of firing), single stack magazine (usually 7-8 rounds), with a characteristic grip and thumb safety. Traditionally in .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol) caliber. Many people love them, though, in general, they probably have the highest malfunction rate of modern pistols. Excellent products are made by Colt, Kimber, Para, and others. Good ones range from $800-$2000 and beyond.

Continue reading“So, You Want to Buy a Handgun… by K.E.”



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 teh latest wave of censorship and social engineering via social credit scores.

Social Credit Scores Are Already Here

Avalanche Lily alerted me to this piece, over at The Last American Vagabond: Social Credit Scores Are Already Here. And in related news: Gab CEO Warns VIsa Is Helping To Bring China’s “Social Credit Score” To America

YouTube Reinstates Bitcoin.com’s Official Channel After Suspension

They’re still up to their old tricks: Youtube Reinstates Bitcoin.com’s Official Channel After Suspension.

Kassam’s Twitter Suspension Triggered by UK Law Enforcement

Linked over at the Whatfinger.com news aggregation site: PROOF: Kassam Twitter Suspension Triggered By UK Law Enforcement Demand to Censor Journalism. This article begins:

“The suspension of The National Pulse Editor-in-Chief Raheem Kassam’s Twitter account appears to have been triggered by United Kingdom Law Enforcement insisting a factually accurate breaking news tweet was ‘in violation of UK law.'”

Minnesota’s Gun Sales Surge

G.G. flagged this: ‘People Are Really Scared’: George Floyd Unrest, Pandemic Fueling Minnesota Gun Sales Surge

Continue reading“The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods”





Preparedness Notes for Wednesday — July 1, 2020

July 1st, is the anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War Battle of Gettysburg, in 1863.

I’m on my way home to the Rawles Ranch, so I’ve reactivated the shopping cart system for Elk Creek Company.

I’ve just started my Independence Day Sale. You will note some sale prices.

I’ll be posting 10 new pieces of inventory, in the next few days.

As usual, I am holding the line on my prices, and have even reduced a few.

All items are first-come-first-served.

We regularly ship to California and to Illinois (except Chicago.) I can accept credit card payments. And note that we now offer optional USPS insurance.

Our Independence Day Sale ends on the evening of Sunday, July 5th.

 

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 89 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 www.TOUGHGRID.com (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 $150 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 89 ends on July 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.



Large-Batch Canning & Jam Making, by St. Funogas

One of my favorite garden bounties every year is the blackberry jam I get from my beautiful 100’ row of thornless blackberry vines. I love my blackberries for many reasons: they’re one of my few pest-free crops, they’re perennials, and they’re linked to my Swedish grandfather who was a master horticulturist and berry grower for over half a century. I also get a feeling of not only craftsmanship, but companionship with my grandpa when I’m out working with the vines: tying up this year’s growth, propagating new plants from tip runners, harvesting the berries, and cutting out the two-year stems at the end of the summer.

But the best part of all, aside from grazing fresh blackberries on the hoof, is enjoying my seedless blackberry jam.

While I’ve never outgrown Peanut Butter & Jelly sandwiches, the 30+ pints of jam I average each year mostly end up in places other than peanut butter sandwiches. I use it to flavor my home-made yogurt, it’s great on waffles and pancakes, and percentage-wise, I probably use the most to flavor my frozen lemon-cucumber-protein smoothies that get me through the hot summers without air conditioning. I share some with friends and neighbors and they’d never let me through the front gate at the family reunion without jars of jam for everyone.

I’m going to present a few radical ideas on how to max out your canning batches, as well as how to create your own jam recipe, and I can assure you they are perfectly safe to try at home. I’ll be using the example of my blackberry jam recipe which I spent five years perfecting, but the general ideas will work with any canning recipe you have. You may need to play around with your recipe to get it just right. With jam, the worse that can happen is that you’ll not end up with the exact consistency you were shooting for, in which case, there are lots of other uses for it. But that happens in any given year anyway, for reasons which I will point out. With the methods I’ll show you, you’re actually more likely to have consistent batches from year to year. So friends, preppers, and canners, lend me your ears.Continue reading“Large-Batch Canning & Jam Making, by St. Funogas”



June 2020 in Precious Metals, by Steven Cochran

Welcome to SurvivalBlog’s Precious Metals Month in Review, where we take a look at “the month that was” in precious metals. Each month, we cover gold’s performance, and the factors that affected gold prices. – Steven Cochran of Gainesville Coins

What Did Gold Do in June?

Gold buyers proved more than willing to step in and buy the dips in June. This bargain hunting became more pronounced as the month went on, and forecasts of an imminent run at all-time highs increased.

Spot gold ground higher in June, starting around $1,700, and running into tough resistance around the $1,765 level by the end of the month. August gold futures followed roughly the same trajectory, just $10 an ounce higher. Bargain hunting stepped in several times over the month, reversing early losses.

A surprisingly positive non-farm payrolls report on June 5th showed that the nation had added 2.5 million jobs, instead of the expected 7 million job loss. This crushed safe haven plays, including gold. For the week ending June 5th, spot gold lost $44 an ounce to $1,684, while gold futures fell $69 to $1,683.  It wasn’t until the third week of June that prices had made a firm recovery back above the $1,750 mark.

Gold staged a major breakout on June 30. August gold ended the month at $1,800.50, the highest settlement since September 2011. Gold futures were up 13% for the quarter, marking the best quarter in 4 years. This sets up a run at the all-time high of $1,920 an ounce. This big surge $20 higher was partially due to coronavirus fears, and partially due to end-of-quarter fund rebalancing.

September silver futures added 57 cents on June 30, capping a huge 32% gain for the quarter and more than wiping out its first quarter losses.

Normally, late May through the first week of September is the annual “dead zone” for gold. Things are different this year. The COVID epidemic and outlandish central bank stimulus actions have distorted markets across every sector.

Factors Affecting Gold This Month

Coronavirus

A resurgence in COVID-19 cases led to at least 11 nations reimposing restrictions, quarantines and shutdowns in June.  Coronavirus infections in the US spiked in June, with daily infection rates doubling. This pushed state governments to stop and even reverse steps towards reopening businesses.

The virus is also reappearing in areas where it had supposedly been wiped out. This includes Beijing, where hotspots of infection popped up all over the city. Authorities locked down entire residential districts, forcing people to stay in their homes while they tried to stop the spread. As soon as one area was cleared, the coronavirus would appear in another district.

This economic uncertainty has been a tailwind for gold prices. On the retail level, demand for silver is near a fever pitch, but the growth in investment demand has not been able to counteract a fall in industrial demand. This has kept silver prices under $18 an ounce.

On a positive note, medical researchers in the UK have discovered that a common anti-inflammatory medicine can save up to a third of COVID patients that are on ventilators, and a fifth of the people on oxygen (but not yet intubated). The medicine, called Dexamethasone, is inexpensive and available world-wide.

Chinese Takeover of Hong Kong

Communist China passed a national security law on June 29 that strengthens Beijing’s grip on Hong Kong. The move has been condemned by many Western democracies. The US promptly enacted measures to restrict the special trading status Hong Kong has enjoyed for decades. Prime Minister of the UK Boris Johnson had previously offered political asylum to up to 3 million Hong Kongers if China passed the security law.

This move by Chinese president Xi Jinping is aimed at crushing pro-democracy movements in Hong Kong, but runs the danger of “killing the goose that lays the golden eggs.” The move is seen as a breach of the 1997 agreement signed between China and the United Kingdom that handed over the island. Investors and financial businesses have been moving operations out of Hong Kong in anticipation of this move.

Central Bank Action

The Fed has joined the ECB and Bank of Japan in buying corporate bonds. Fed Chairman Powell says that they will buy as much corporate debt as it takes to revive the market. What this means, is that the huge multinational corporations can continue to get cheap loans, because the Fed will buy the bonds if no one else does.

This has led to concerns that the Fed will follow the other central banks in artificially controlling the yield curve. Powell has said as much. If he follows through with this, expect deeply negative real interest rates and soaring gold prices.

Negative real interest rates worldwide have reduced the opportunity cost of gold. In Europe especially, negative interest rates on large bank deposits practically push investors into assets like gold.

The yield on the 10-year government TIPS bond (Treasury Inflation-Protected Security) is a good indicator of real interest rates. Except for the yield spike caused by a bond selloff in mid-March, it has been negative for the entire year.

Gold ETFs

Worldwide, gold ETFs saw net inflows of 154 metric tons in May ($8.5 billion), once again setting an all-time high of 3,510 metric tons. Total Assets Under Management (AUM) for the world’s gold ETFs stands at $195 billion. With the year not yet half over, gold ETF inflows in 2020 total $33.7 billion. This trounces the previous record high for annual inflows of $24 billion, set in 2016.

North American Gold ETFs led the pack in May, seeing 102.2 metric tons of inflows, at a dollar value of $5.6 billion. Europe, which was firmly in the grips of the COVID pandemic, saw 44.7 metric tons of inflows, priced at 2.44 billion.

Asia, which includes the #1 and #2 gold markets of China and India, have still not recovered from the total lockdowns implemented by their governments. They only saw 4.8 metric tons of inflows, worth $261 million

According to the World Gold Council, collective holdings of gold ETFs have now surpassed Germany’s official gold reserves and exceed the official gold reserves of every country except for the US. Over the past 12 months, AUM has nearly doubled, rising by 90%

Central Bank Gold Purchases

World Gold Council Central Bank Gold Purchases reports have a two month lag, so today we’re looking at the numbers for April.

  • Turkey was the big buyer, adding a big 38.8 metric tons to their gold reserves.
  • Ecuador added 7.5 tons, but this was replacing the 7.5 tons of gold they sold in March.
  • Kazakhstan sold 4.1 tons of gold, after selling 7 tons in March. They’re using all that gold they have accumulated over the years to support their economy and currency during the COVID outbreak.
  • Uzbekistan was the only other central bank making a move of more than 1 ton, selling 2.2 tons of gold.
On The Retail Front

US Mint bullion sales for the month of June, through June 29, showed big increases from May. The Mint sold 44,000 troy oz of American Gold Eagles of all sizes in June up from 11,500 in May. 7,500 1 oz Gold Buffalo bullion coins in June was a big step up from the 2,500 sold in May.

American Silver Eagle sales for June totaled 1,378,000 oz, compared to just 490,000 in May. That depressing number for May might be due to the West Point Mint being closed for two weeks for disinfecting.

The Perth Mint in Australia sold 10,790 oz of gold bullion in May, and 681,582 oz of silver.

The Royal Canadian Mint only reports sales quarterly. For the first three months of the year, the RCM sold 198,100 oz of gold, and 6.6 million oz of silver. This compares to 123,800 and 5.5 million oz for the same quarter of 2019.

Market Buzz

Citizens in China made up for time lost to coronavirus lockdowns, Gold purchases rose 54% in May, compared to April.

Speaking of China, Chinese mining companies are going on an acquisition rampage, snapping up gold miners whose stock prices have been hurt due to lockdowns and mine stoppages related to the COVID-19 epidemic.

India has seen gold prices rise 20% in the first half of the year, driven in part by the weakening rupee. Strong gold demand has been helped by broker discounts to help take the sting out of a 12.5% import tax imposed by the government. Demand has also been fueled by military confrontations between India and China at their common border in the Himalayan mountains.

Bank of America has moved its forecast of when gold will break all-time highs. Previously, they had called for record gold prices by the end of the year. Now they’re saying it will be before October.

Citibank was watching gold prices at the start of June, and said that $2,000 gold will happen a year later than BoA says: the third quarter of 2021.

Credit Suisse also seems behind the times, seeing $1,560 to $1,750 gold in the third quarter 2020, and $1,600 to $1,775 in the fourth quarter.(The last time gold was under $1,600 was April 1st.)

Goldman Sachs sees gold at $1,800 in three months, $1,900 in six months, and $2,000 in 12 months. They also made sharp upwards revisions to their silver forecasts, targeting $19 in three months, $21 in six months, and $22 in 12 months.

Things have changed so drastically since the first of the year (who saw a global pandemic and the Fed buying corporate debt back then?) MKS PAMP felt compelled to take a mulligan and rewrite their annual gold forecast.  Taking into account more than $15 Trillion in central bank stimulus, negative interest rates, massive unemployment and global instability,  they see $1,770 gold in Q3, $1,830 gold in Q4, and gold breaking the $2,000 barrier by next summer.

Lawrie Williams at Sharps Pixley runs down the list of the Top 20 gold mining nations, noting that Russia has dethroned Australia for the #2 spot.

Mining.com says, give Russia another ten years, and they will displace China for the top spot.

Abhishek Shrma at Techocodex explains how the COVID epidemic and big US banks pulling back from big gold trades has led to a fracturing of the global gold market. He runs down the new regional players who are replacing London and New York in their markets.

Paul Ploumas notes that Swiss gold exports to the US hit a record high of 126.6 metric tons in May, breaking the record of 111.7 tons set in April. The 238 tons of gold sent to the US from Switzerland in these two months is 15 times larger than all of last year.

Back to China, a major gold processor was using 83 metric tons of gold bars as collateral on $2.8 billion of loans. When the company defaulted, the banks found that whoops! All the gold bars they were holding as collateral were gilded copper bars!

Rumor Mill

Jan Nieuwenhuijs is probably the world’s best China gold expert. This month he debunks a rumor making the rounds and says “No, China does not keep gold at the New York Fed.”

A former head of British spy agency MI6 says that new evidence shows that part of the gene sequence of novel coronavirus was likely man-made. The report claims that COVID-19 is “likely to be the result of a laboratory experiment to produce “chimeric viruses of high potency”.”

The former MI6 chief, Sir Richard Dearlove, believes the virus accidentally escaped from a medical research lab in Wuhan, where work is being done to find defenses against coronaviruses.

If you left three kg of gold on a train, wouldn’t you try to get it back? Swiss authorities have tried since October to find the owner of the gold. I think he probably doesn’t want to be found.

Looking Ahead To Next Month

To end the month, we note that the famous Forrest Fenn treasure has been found. Mr. Fenn verified the claim of an anonymous man after being sent a photo of the treasure chest’s contents.

This column is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended as investment advice.

– Steven Cochran of Gainesville Coins



JWR’s Recommendations of the Week:

Here are JWR’s Recommendations of the Week for various media and tools of interest to SurvivalBlog readers. The focus is usually on emergency communications gear, bug out bag gear, books, and movies–often with a tie-in to disaster preparedness, and links to “how-to” self-sufficiency videos. There are also links to sources for both storage food and storage containers. You will also note an emphasis on history books and historical movies. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This week, the focus is on books about Idaho. (See the Books section.)

Books:

I’ve mentioned this great book, before. It is a combination “history and travel” tome. Sadly, it is out of print, so I suggest grabbing a copy, while it is still affordable: Idaho for the Curious: A Guide

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Hiking Idaho: A Guide To The State’s Greatest Hiking Adventures (State Hiking Guides Series)

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DeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer: Idaho

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The Book of Unusual Knowledge

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Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don’t Deny® Intermittent Fasting–Including the 28-Day FAST Start

Continue reading“JWR’s Recommendations of the Week:”







The Illogical “In Common Use” Legal Standard

The Supreme Court’s District of Columbia v. Heller decision in 2008 was a landmark case. While it did confirm our right to keep and bear arms, it stopped short of overturning the plethora of bad laws that it should have. In this essay, I will demonstrate that the logic that the court applied in Heller was significantly flawed. In Heller, while addressing the 1939 Miller v. United States decision, the Supreme Court applied the standard of “the sorts of weapons protected were those ‘in common use at the time.’”

Some background: Jack Miller and Frank Layton were small-time crooks that had been convicted of illegal possession of a short-barreled shotgun–which had effectively been banned by the National Firearms Act of 1934. (NFA-’34.) The case was heard with Miller in absentia — he was still in prison on a string of charges. The illogical Miller decision revolved around the fact that in 1937, militias did not issue shotguns with barrels measuring less than 18 inches, so, therefore, Mr. Miller’s constitutional rights were not infringed by the National Firearms Act of 1934. That was a specious argument.  Instead of addressing the constitutional issue squarely, they deflected off into “in common use” semantics.  The Miller decision was bad law, and more recently the Supreme Court has compounded the Miller decision’s error, by echoing it in the Heller ruling.

Heller’s “in common use” test has been debated by legal scholars for the past 12 years. A piece authored by Nicholas J. Johnson published in Harvard Law and Policy Review is fairly typical. But both the Supreme Court and later analysts have overlooked a key logical flaw in this standard.  The flaw is this: The “In Common Use” standard ignores the potential common use by the citizenry that failed to develop because of previously-enacted unconstitutional laws or edicts. Looking retrospectively, the restraint on commerce created by gun laws is incalculable.  For instance, consider how many machineguns or submachineguns would now be “in common use”, if it were not for the onerous federal tax that congress established in 1934, or the ban on new manufacture (for private sale) with the Hughes Amendment, in 1986? It is impossible to quantify, but it is safe to assume that there would now be millions of machineguns now circulating in private hands if it were not for those two laws. Simply stated: They never achieved “common use” because congress unconstitutionally taxed and banned them!
Continue reading“The Illogical “In Common Use” Legal Standard”



SurvivalBlog’s News From The American Redoubt

This weekly column features news stories and event announcements from around the American Redoubt region. (Idaho, Montana, eastern Oregon, eastern Washington, and Wyoming.) Much of the region is also more commonly known as The Inland Northwest. We also mention companies of interest to preppers and survivalists that are located in the American Redoubt region. Today, we focus on Smithsonian’s Aerial America television series, parts of which recently became available on YouTube. (See the Idaho and Montana sections.)

Idaho

Aerial America: Idaho (Full Episode)

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10 Cheapest Idaho Town to Buy a Home.

JWR’s Comment: Apparently this video was produced by someone who has never been north of Caldwell. There are plenty of towns in North Central and North Idaho with a median home price below $110,000. But you won’t find that pricing in the larger towns and cities.

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Reader A.K. spotted this: Lawsuit seeks to halt construction of central Idaho trail

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Idaho “Celebrates” California Forbidding Travel To Idaho Over Law Against Boys Playing Girls Sports

Continue reading“SurvivalBlog’s News From The American Redoubt”





Preparedness Notes for Monday — June 29, 2020

On June 29th, 1941, the Germans invaded and occupied Lvov, in eastern Galicia, in Ukraine, slaughtering thousands of people. Russia followed a scorched earth policy as Germany invaded just as they had during Napoleon’s invasion. The burned, destroyed, flooded, dismantled and removed anything and everything in territory that they were forced to give up. As the Germans moved in, the Soviets proceeded to murder 3,000 Ukrainian political prisoners. It was so bad that the Germans were actually seen as liberators by the local population. Sadly, within days, they were forced to endure the horrors of the Nazi regime as some 2.5 million Ukrainians were shipped to Germany as slave laborers and the Ukrainian Jews were subjected to the same vicious racial policies as in Poland. Over 600,000 were murdered. Even the Ukrainian nationalists participated in the bloodshed by scapegoating Jews for “Bolshevism” and killing them in the streets.

Today, another review by our Field Gear Editor, Pat Cascio.