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 “HJL”.
The Thomas fire has scorched 273,400 acres, or about 427 square miles of coastal foothills and national forest. This makes it the largest wildfire in California History and it is still going strong with only 65% containment. I’ve noticed some confusion over the term “containment” in the past. It doesn’t mean the fire is under control. It is a term that means firefighters have been able to place a firebreak around it’s perimeter. That firebreak can be anything from a 100 yard wide bulldozed separation to a couple shovel fulls wide. It can also just be a section of already burned land. It just depends on how large that section of fire is and the what the fire conditions are. The fire break is often no bigger than necessary. 65% containment means that there is a firebreak around 65% of the perimeter of the fire.
Speaking of wildfires, are you prepared for a possible wildfire in your area? If you live in a city, are you prepared for a large city fire? Kevin Reeve, of onPoint Tactical has prepared a short article on being prepared to deal with urban evacuations due to fire conditions. It is short and worth a read. With Tolkien as one of my favorite authors, his use of Tolkien’s quote on dragons caught my eye: “It does not do to leave a dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.”
After the U.S. got a nice Christmas present in the form of the tax overhaul that finally passed congress, the EU has expressed concern that it will unfairly incentivize companies to move to the U.S. The thinking is that the bill makes a break with global “fair-taxation” rules and represents a thinly disguised trade war. I guess the EU’s version of “fair” means that companies prefer them over U.S. locations. Reader D.S. responded well: “Bring it!”
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The U.S. vetoed a U.N. security counsel resolution that condemned the recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli Capital and the promise to move the U.S. Embassy there. This marked the first time since 2011 that the U.S. has exercised it’s veto power. The response by the U.N. was to pass a resolution in the General Assembly condemning the move. Only nine nations voted with the U.S. with about 30 abstaining. The U.S. ambassador, Nikki Haley, informed the U.S. prior to the vote that the U.S. would be taking names with Trump reiterating that nations voting against the U.S. would lose their funding from the U.S. Sweden claims that we are blackmailing other nations. While listening to Haley deliver the speech, I almost expected “kicking butt” to follow the “taking names” statement. I’m with Ben Shapiro on this one. Kick the U.N. out of the U.S. and turn the compound into an asylum for all those who are seeking refuge from the U.N.’s sorry decisions. Thanks to D.S. for the link.
There are suspicions that your smartphone is being used to spy on you again. Reader G.G. sent in this article profiling some “strange coincidents”. The author has had several experiences where conversations and photos taken have been closely followed by ads that are eerily similar to the subjecdt of the conversations. There is no proof that this is being done, however the technology exists and the only thing keeping it from being done is the threat of legal action from users. We already have incidents where companies and app designers have used personal data in ways they shouldn’t so this definitely deserves some further investigation. Better yet, ditch the smartphone.
High Altitude Survival
Reader G.G. suggested this interesting article on High-Altitude Mountain Survival. The challenges of high altitude can be quite daunting: extreme cold air temperatures, low air pressure, lack of shelter, intense solar radiation, altitude sickness among others. Even if you never plan on hiking or traveling over such terrain, you should familiarize yourself with critical survival skills and practice them. The 1972 crash of Uruguayan Flight 571 in the high Andes mountains comes to mind.
4000 Pound Weapons
You never know when your life will be threatened and it really does pay to stay alert to impending threats. Reader P.S. sent in this article about a car ramming into pedestrians in Melbourne Australia. Nineteen people were injured and it doesn’t even seem to be an intentional incident. The driver has no known associations with terrorist groups, but does have a history of drug use and mental health issues. This being Austrailia, we are wondering if there will now be calls to outlaw cars since so many people can be injured at once. Perhaps we’ll start with more intensive background checks before you can obtain a drivers license?
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Please send your news tips to HJL. (Either via e-mail of via ourContact form.) These are often especially relevant, because they come from folks who watch news that is important to them. Due to their diligence and focus, we benefit from fresh “on target” news. We often “get the scoop” on news that is most likely ignored (or reported late) by mainstream American news outlets. Thanks!