Freedom Means Being Independant

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By: Tom Chatham Most people say they want to be free but will also say we must do as we are told. They see government controls as safety from the world surrounding them. You cannot be free and be under someone’s total control at the same time. They force compliance by threatening to take away […]

Air Travel an Preparedness

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I travel for work sometimes. I also travel to see my kids. Both are at least in the short term unavoidable. Also traveling for fun is nice.

Traveling by vehicle is easy for preparedness. Assuming you have some space in the vehicle you can just bring whatever. Also your ability to control your own travel means you can choose to leave right now. You can go a hundred miles the wrong way to avoid a big problem.

Air travel is more difficult. Still I think you can be reasonably prepared for most even semi likely events if not the end of the world.

The most restrictive set of stuff for air travel is if you are only using a carry on. It is also what you can have on your person on the plane. What can you have? Listed in rough order:
-Good footwear. You don’t need hiking boots but shouldn’t be wearing flip flops or heals either. A decent set of close toed shoes you can walk a few miles in can fit with most styles and are very prudent.
-Decent all around clothes. Not combat or hunting gear but some kind of reasonable clothes in case you need to do something or get stuck in them for awhile. Also reasonable outer wear for your area.
-CASH. Probably the biggest single problem solver in real world survival situations. 
-Credit Cards. Having a card with a big balance gives you options. Need a last minute ticket, OK. Heck if you need to buy a used car to drive out of a problem it is an option.
-Medications. Having a week or even better a month of medicines you need is very wise.
-OTC meds. Stuff for standard travel sickness like diarrhea, Tylenol, Benedryl, etc.
-First aid gear. Minus the needle I can’t see why you wouldn’t be able to have a full IFAK in a carry on bag.
-A water bottle.
-Compass.
-Maps. This is wonky as planes cover huge distances but even a state road map is better than nothing. Doubly so if you are not familiar with the area at all.

Now lets say you check a bag. For the sake of this a bag to anywhere. What can you add.
 -A good knife.
-A multi tool.

Checking guns. Obviously on a flight to most foreign countries this is not an option. However when it comes to traveling in most of the US it is not a big deal to fly with guns. I have done it a few times and the only one where it got any scrutiny was in Louisiana at a local airport where the guy just wanted to see what I had. Really flying with a gun isn’t anywhere near as big a deal as people make it out to be.

That said if you travel to the same place often and can afford to do so it isn’t a bad idea to consider an operational cache.

How serious about all of this should you be? I suppose it depends. Primarily in my mind it depends on the risk level of where you are going. If I was flying into Northern Iraq or Pakistan or Indonesia would have things locked down. Thousands in cash a full on BOB, an as many weapons as you can get in and carry would be prudent. On the other hand if you were flying to a few hundred miles from home and it isn’t to a place with a high threat then some cash, decent clothes, a compass and a map an your not doing bad at all. Toss in a good folding knife and a gun or two and its a good set up for a relaxed area.

Thoughts?

Planting by the Moon and Stars: Great Idea or Hogwash?

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This method of gardening might be right up your alley, or it might be so far out there that it leaves you scratching your head. Let’s look at “planting by the stars.”

Farmers and Gardener have been planting by the stars and celestial bodies for centuries.

To add another layer to your garden planning: According to legends and stories, each sign has something to offer a gardener and his or her garden. Let’s take a look at some gardening tasks and the best signs to do them.

The moon moves through the various signs of the Zodiac every couple of days. Each of the signs is associated with different elements, which are suitable for different tasks in your garden, like watering, planting, harvesting, fertilizing, and cultivating the soil depending on which sign the moon is in.

The Elements

One premise of gardening by the stars is that the Universe is made up of four elementsEarth, Air, Fire, and Water.

The signs are connected to the elements like this:

Earth – Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn

Air – Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius

Fire – Aries, Libra, and Sagittarius

Water – Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces

The Earth signs are very fertile and good for planting. The root is the part of the plant that is associated with the Earth signs. Earth signs are particularly good for planting root crops or transplanting to encourage root development.

Air signs are primarily dry and barren, Libra is an exception, which is good for flowers and herbs. Melons like to be planted in Gemini and Onions do well if planted in Aquarius. It is a good time to harvest or cultivate the soil during an Air sign.

The water signs, Cancer, Pisces, and Scorpio are great for planting above ground crops. These are the best signs to plant in general.

In the fire signs of Aries, Sagittarius, and Leo, harvest, pull weeds, or get rid of pests. Harvesting is a good idea during a fire sign as the crops won’t rot in storage.

Planting by the Signs

Fertilize

It is best to fertilize when the moon is in Cancer, Scorpio, or Pisces. These are fruitful signs. Use Taurus or Capricorn if necessary. Apply your fertilizer during the moon’s waning phase, preferably in the third or fourth quarter.

Harvest

Root crops intended for food and fruits should be harvested during the waning moon in the third or fourth quarter in a dry sign of Aries, Leo, Sagittarius, Gemini, or Aquarius. Harvest root crops like sweet potatoes at the full moon in one of the dry signs.

Watering

When the moon is in a watery sign, like Cancer, Scorpio, or Pisces, it is a perfect time to water your garden. If that’s not possible, watering in Libra is good, too.

Mowing

Mow your lawn or meadows to increase growth during the first or second quarter of the waxing moon, or during the third or fourth quarter of the waning moon to decrease growth.

Pruning

It is best to prune during the third quarter waning moon in Scorpio to reduce branch growth and set better fruit.

Cultivating Soil

During the signs of Aries, Gemini, Virgo, and Sagittarius, cultivate your soil. To cultivate your soil, add organic matter, creating compost, improve soil texture, aerate, and mulch. During the first or second quarter waxing Moon in Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces, or Libra, add cover crops to increase nitrogen and decrease erosion.

The Science

Ask a scientist, and they’ll give you a blank stare or laugh hysterically. And rightly so.

The nearest star is more than four light-years away (that’s four years traveling at the speed of light, which would be great if we could do it). The light from the stars would not affect plant life here on Earth.

However, first-rate farmers and gardeners follow the signs, and while they might do just as well if they didn’t garden by the signs, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to say whether it works or not. We only have experiences.

We do know that planting by the stars and moon phases does no harm, so why not try it as an experiment? Plant half your garden by the stars and the other half as you normally would and see for yourself which plot does best.

Be fair and let common sense make up your mind. Keep in mind everything you know about gardening, even the most devout “sign planters” take weather and temperature into account before undertaking a gardening project.

Quite frankly, Moon & Star Gardeners never asked why it works. The farmer who planted his homegrown food by the moon and stars has a bountiful harvest to show for it. Isn’t that really all that matters?

Did you see Part 1 of this series? Click here to read Planting by the Moon and Sun.

 

Do you plant by the moon or the signs? What are your results? We’d love to hear about your experiences below.

 

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The post Planting by the Moon and Stars: Great Idea or Hogwash? appeared first on The Grow Network.

10 Easy Ways To Take Care Of Your Teeth … Naturally!

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Are you taking care of your teeth? It is one of the single most important preventative measure that you can do yourself. Poor oral health leads to gum disease, facial pain, infections of the mouth, and more serious health problems, including stroke, heart disease, irritable bowel syndrome, kidney disease, diabetes, and oral cancer. According to the ADA, nearly 50% of Americans don’t go to the dentist because of fear, money, or the belief that their mouths are healthy. Here are some easy ways you can care for your teeth, naturally.

From the Inside-Out

A healthy mouth involves your entire body. Your body needs fat-soluble vitamins and minerals to keep your mouth healthy, too.

These minerals and vitamins support the body as a whole but also create more mineral-rich saliva, which is how your body protects your teeth.

Saliva and Oral Health

Saliva is how your body protects your teeth. On a practical level, teeth are remineralized as your saliva washes over your teeth. However, you must have appropriate nutrients in your body, or your saliva will lack the minerals needed to protect and strengthen your teeth.

Watch Your Diet

Eating a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy provide you with all of the nutrients that you and your teeth need.

Keep in mind that acidic foods increase the risk of tooth decay because it breaks down the enamel of your teeth and allows bacteria to get into your teeth. You don’t have to avoid acidic foods altogether, but knowing which foods are acidic will help you take control of those portions.

Fruit and Vegetables

Munching on apples, celery sticks, carrots, and peppers make your teeth strong and healthy.

Sesame Seeds

Use sesame seeds as a oral scrub. They gently remove plaque and tartar and don’t damage your teeth. Chew them up, but don’t swallow them.

How to care for your teeth and gums—naturally!

1. Brushing

Your brushing routine is super-important for your overall mouth health. You should brush at least twice-a-day. If you do it properly, brushing should take about two minutes. Do you have problems brushing that long? Set a timer for two minutes to make sure you brush for the appropriate amount of time.

  • Start your brushing routine in the back of your mouth. If you follow the same routine each time, it will become a habit.
  • In order to loosen food debris and plaque that builds up around the gum line, brush in a circular motion downward from the gums.
  • Don’t forget the backsides of your teeth! The back surfaces of all your teeth are just as important as the front. Food and debris can build-up there just as easily.
  • Brushing the biting surface of your teeth will loosen food particles that settle into the indentations.
  • Bacteria builds up on your tongue and the inside of your cheeks. Be sure to brush these areas to promote fresh breath.

2. Floss

There is a lot of controversy over flossing right now. For years, it has been said that “flossing is the most important thing you can do to protect your teeth and gums.” However, many people overlook this simple task or don’t do it correctly.

Now, there is mounting evidence that flossing doesn’t help prevent gum disease.

With that said, there are minimal risks and a lot of potential rewards. So, go ahead and floss!

Use an unwaxed, natural floss to get between your teeth and below the gum line where plaque, food particles, and bacteria hang out.

Note: Petroleum byproduct are used in waxed floss. Also, check the package for the cruelty-free label. You’ll know that no animals were harmed in the production of that floss.

How to Floss

  1. Cut a length of floss that you can wrap around your fingers and still have enough to hold and work in between your teeth with an up-and-down motion.
  2. Curve the base of each tooth in a C-shape and work the floss beneath the gum line. As you move from tooth to tooth, use a clean part of the strand.

Make Your Own Toothpaste

This toothpaste recipe has no fluoride, is safe for children, and those with thyroid problems. Oh and it’s YUMMY, too!

Get the recipe here!

 

take-care-teeth-naturally

3. Drink water

The average American drinks only 2 1/2 cups of water a day. To help you stay hydrated, you need to drink at least 8-8 oz. cups of water each day.

If you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Besides keeping your body hydrated, water helps wash away food and bacteria left in your mouth.

Your saliva is produced from water. It neutralizes the acidity in your mouth that erodes tooth enamel and weakens your teeth.

Make it a habit to rinse your mouth or swish with water after every meal. This will help eliminate leftover bits of food and speed up the remineralization process.

Make your own Mouth Wash

In a glass jar, mix 1/2 cup of filtered water, 2 teaspoons of baking soda, 2 drops of tea tree oil, and 3 drops of peppermint essential oil. Shake well. Store in your bathroom cabinet.

To use: Swish 3 teaspoons in your mouth for a minute or two. Try to avoid swallowing it.

Note: Double the recipe if you need a larger batch.

4. Chew xylitol gum

Bacteria love the sugar alcohol in xylitol, but bacteria can’t break it down. The bacteria starve to death. Chewing xylitol gum reduces gum disease and tooth decay successfully. It also promotes saliva production, which increases the antibacterial forces in the mouth. It also promotes saliva production, which increases the antibacterial forces in the mouth.

5. Oil pulling

Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic technique to keep your mouth healthy. Both sesame and coconut oil have antibacterial properties that keep your teeth and gums in tip-top shape. And you’ll also notice that oil pulling naturally whitens your teeth. Do this first thing in the morning.

How to oil pull:

  1. Put 1 tablespoon of sesame or coconut oil in your mouth.
  2. Gently swish it around for 10 to 20 minutes.
  3. Spit it out into the garbage. Avoid gargling or swallowing the oil.
  4. Rinse your mouth with warm water.
  5. Brush your teeth as usual.
  6. Repeat daily, first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach.

You may have to build up to the 20 minutes. At first, I had so much saliva in my mouth along with the oil that I could only swish for a minute or two. Start where you can and build-up to 10 to 20 minutes.

What oil pulling does:

Oil pulling draws out toxins from your body. It is primarily used to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and improves your overall health.

6. Tongue scraping

Get yourself a tongue scraper. Stainless-steel tongue scrapers, which you can buy online, are much easier to clean.

What it does:

Tongue scraping reduces and removes the bacterial growth on your tongue that leads to bad breath. Removing bacterial growth is good for you because it reduces the likelihood of tooth decay, tooth loss, gum disease, and other oral problems.

How to tongue scrape:

  • Do your tongue scraping first thing in the morning.
  • Watch in a mirror. Place the tongue scraper at the back of your tongue. Pull it to the front edge of your tongue, and discard the build up.
  • Repeat this motion twice.
  • Be gentle! You don’t want to hurt your taste buds.

7. Drink herbal tea

Herbal, red, white, and green tea are excellent after-dinner palate-cleansers. They also have the added benefit of keeping plaque from developing.

 

take-care-teeth-naturally

8. Herbs & Spices

Herbs and spices have long been favored to clean and freshen the breath. Many herbs have antibacterial properties, which help keep your teeth and gums from getting infected.

Cloves
Suck on a whole clove to lessen tooth pain.

Aloe vera
Apply aloe vera gel in small quantities if you have gum inflammation. Be warned, natural aloe gel is extremely bitter tasting.

Turmeric
Keep your gums and teeth healthy and infection-free with turmeric, which contains antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Mix a ¼ teaspoon of turmeric powder and a little bit of water into a paste. Brush your teeth a few times a week to control plaque and prevent gingivitis.

Licorice
According to a 2011 study published in the American Chemical Society’s Journal of Natural Products, scientists discovered that two important compounds in licorice helped kill the major bacteria responsible for tooth decay and gum disease.

Use a soft licorice stick like a toothbrush to remove plaque and tartar.

9. Add supplements

Minerals are very important to overall health, but especially for teeth and gums. Diet alone might be enough, but many foods lack nutrients from being grown in nutrient depleted soil, so supplements help fill the gaps. Check with a medical professional before adding supplements.

  • Vitamins A, C, D, K
  • Magnesium
  • Gelatin
  • Cod Liver Oil

10. Herbal breath fresheners

  • Chew on fresh parsley or mint leaves.
  • Rub your teeth with orange peel to help fight tartar build-up and whiten teeth.
  • Gargle with an old-fashioned solution
    1 cup of water and 2 Tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Combine and store in a glass jar. Shake well before use. Rinse and repeat every 2-3 days for maximum value.

Do you use any of these natural tooth care techniques? Tell us your story in the comment below.

Resources:

American Dental Association.
U.S. News & World Report. August 2, 2016. David Oliver. Health Buzz: Flossing Doesn’t Actually Work, Report Says. 

 

Save

Save

Save

The post 10 Easy Ways To Take Care Of Your Teeth … Naturally! appeared first on The Grow Network.

10 Easy Ways To Take Care Of Your Teeth … Naturally!

Are you taking care of your teeth? It is one of the single most important preventative measure that you can do yourself. Poor oral health leads to gum disease, facial pain, infections of the mouth, and more serious health problems, including stroke, heart disease, irritable bowel syndrome, kidney disease, diabetes, and oral cancer. According to the ADA, nearly 50% of Americans don’t go to the dentist because of fear, money, or the belief that their mouths are healthy. Here are some easy ways you can care for your teeth, naturally.

From the Inside-Out

A healthy mouth involves your entire body. Your body needs fat-soluble vitamins and minerals to keep your mouth healthy, too.

These minerals and vitamins support the body as a whole but also create more mineral-rich saliva, which is how your body protects your teeth.

Saliva and Oral Health

Saliva is how your body protects your teeth. On a practical level, teeth are remineralized as your saliva washes over your teeth. However, you must have appropriate nutrients in your body, or your saliva will lack the minerals needed to protect and strengthen your teeth.

Watch Your Diet

Eating a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy provide you with all of the nutrients that you and your teeth need.

Keep in mind that acidic foods increase the risk of tooth decay because it breaks down the enamel of your teeth and allows bacteria to get into your teeth. You don’t have to avoid acidic foods altogether, but knowing which foods are acidic will help you take control of those portions.

Fruit and Vegetables

Munching on apples, celery sticks, carrots, and peppers make your teeth strong and healthy.

Sesame Seeds

Use sesame seeds as a oral scrub. They gently remove plaque and tartar and don’t damage your teeth. Chew them up, but don’t swallow them.

How to care for your teeth and gums—naturally!

1. Brushing

Your brushing routine is super-important for your overall mouth health. You should brush at least twice-a-day. If you do it properly, brushing should take about two minutes. Do you have problems brushing that long? Set a timer for two minutes to make sure you brush for the appropriate amount of time.

  • Start your brushing routine in the back of your mouth. If you follow the same routine each time, it will become a habit.
  • In order to loosen food debris and plaque that builds up around the gum line, brush in a circular motion downward from the gums.
  • Don’t forget the backsides of your teeth! The back surfaces of all your teeth are just as important as the front. Food and debris can build-up there just as easily.
  • Brushing the biting surface of your teeth will loosen food particles that settle into the indentations.
  • Bacteria builds up on your tongue and the inside of your cheeks. Be sure to brush these areas to promote fresh breath.

2. Floss

There is a lot of controversy over flossing right now. For years, it has been said that “flossing is the most important thing you can do to protect your teeth and gums.” However, many people overlook this simple task or don’t do it correctly.

Now, there is mounting evidence that flossing doesn’t help prevent gum disease.

With that said, there are minimal risks and a lot of potential rewards. So, go ahead and floss!

Use an unwaxed, natural floss to get between your teeth and below the gum line where plaque, food particles, and bacteria hang out.

Note: Petroleum byproduct are used in waxed floss. Also, check the package for the cruelty-free label. You’ll know that no animals were harmed in the production of that floss.

How to Floss

  1. Cut a length of floss that you can wrap around your fingers and still have enough to hold and work in between your teeth with an up-and-down motion.
  2. Curve the base of each tooth in a C-shape and work the floss beneath the gum line. As you move from tooth to tooth, use a clean part of the strand.

Make Your Own Toothpaste

This toothpaste recipe has no fluoride, is safe for children, and those with thyroid problems. Oh and it’s YUMMY, too!

Get the recipe here!

 

take-care-teeth-naturally

3. Drink water

The average American drinks only 2 1/2 cups of water a day. To help you stay hydrated, you need to drink at least 8-8 oz. cups of water each day.

If you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Besides keeping your body hydrated, water helps wash away food and bacteria left in your mouth.

Your saliva is produced from water. It neutralizes the acidity in your mouth that erodes tooth enamel and weakens your teeth.

Make it a habit to rinse your mouth or swish with water after every meal. This will help eliminate leftover bits of food and speed up the remineralization process.

Make your own Mouth Wash

In a glass jar, mix 1/2 cup of filtered water, 2 teaspoons of baking soda, 2 drops of tea tree oil, and 3 drops of peppermint essential oil. Shake well. Store in your bathroom cabinet.

To use: Swish 3 teaspoons in your mouth for a minute or two. Try to avoid swallowing it.

Note: Double the recipe if you need a larger batch.

4. Chew xylitol gum

Bacteria love the sugar alcohol in xylitol, but bacteria can’t break it down. The bacteria starve to death. Chewing xylitol gum reduces gum disease and tooth decay successfully. It also promotes saliva production, which increases the antibacterial forces in the mouth. It also promotes saliva production, which increases the antibacterial forces in the mouth.

5. Oil pulling

Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic technique to keep your mouth healthy. Both sesame and coconut oil have antibacterial properties that keep your teeth and gums in tip-top shape. And you’ll also notice that oil pulling naturally whitens your teeth. Do this first thing in the morning.

How to oil pull:

  1. Put 1 tablespoon of sesame or coconut oil in your mouth.
  2. Gently swish it around for 10 to 20 minutes.
  3. Spit it out into the garbage. Avoid gargling or swallowing the oil.
  4. Rinse your mouth with warm water.
  5. Brush your teeth as usual.
  6. Repeat daily, first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach.

You may have to build up to the 20 minutes. At first, I had so much saliva in my mouth along with the oil that I could only swish for a minute or two. Start where you can and build-up to 10 to 20 minutes.

What oil pulling does:

Oil pulling draws out toxins from your body. It is primarily used to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and improves your overall health.

6. Tongue scraping

Get yourself a tongue scraper. Stainless-steel tongue scrapers, which you can buy online, are much easier to clean.

What it does:

Tongue scraping reduces and removes the bacterial growth on your tongue that leads to bad breath. Removing bacterial growth is good for you because it reduces the likelihood of tooth decay, tooth loss, gum disease, and other oral problems.

How to tongue scrape:

  • Do your tongue scraping first thing in the morning.
  • Watch in a mirror. Place the tongue scraper at the back of your tongue. Pull it to the front edge of your tongue, and discard the build up.
  • Repeat this motion twice.
  • Be gentle! You don’t want to hurt your taste buds.

7. Drink herbal tea

Herbal, red, white, and green tea are excellent after-dinner palate-cleansers. They also have the added benefit of keeping plaque from developing.

 

take-care-teeth-naturally

8. Herbs & Spices

Herbs and spices have long been favored to clean and freshen the breath. Many herbs have antibacterial properties, which help keep your teeth and gums from getting infected.

Cloves
Suck on a whole clove to lessen tooth pain.

Aloe vera
Apply aloe vera gel in small quantities if you have gum inflammation. Be warned, natural aloe gel is extremely bitter tasting.

Turmeric
Keep your gums and teeth healthy and infection-free with turmeric, which contains antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Mix a ¼ teaspoon of turmeric powder and a little bit of water into a paste. Brush your teeth a few times a week to control plaque and prevent gingivitis.

Licorice
According to a 2011 study published in the American Chemical Society’s Journal of Natural Products, scientists discovered that two important compounds in licorice helped kill the major bacteria responsible for tooth decay and gum disease.

Use a soft licorice stick like a toothbrush to remove plaque and tartar.

9. Add supplements

Minerals are very important to overall health, but especially for teeth and gums. Diet alone might be enough, but many foods lack nutrients from being grown in nutrient depleted soil, so supplements help fill the gaps. Check with a medical professional before adding supplements.

  • Vitamins A, C, D, K
  • Magnesium
  • Gelatin
  • Cod Liver Oil

10. Herbal breath fresheners

  • Chew on fresh parsley or mint leaves.
  • Rub your teeth with orange peel to help fight tartar build-up and whiten teeth.
  • Gargle with an old-fashioned solution
    1 cup of water and 2 Tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Combine and store in a glass jar. Shake well before use. Rinse and repeat every 2-3 days for maximum value.

Do you use any of these natural tooth care techniques? Tell us your story in the comment below.

Resources:

American Dental Association.
U.S. News & World Report. August 2, 2016. David Oliver. Health Buzz: Flossing Doesn’t Actually Work, Report Says. 

 

Save

Save

Save

The post 10 Easy Ways To Take Care Of Your Teeth … Naturally! appeared first on The Grow Network.

To Put A Lock On A Glock Or Not

Click here to view the original post.

Best way to lock pistol

This is not about Glock handguns, per se.  It is about what choices to make for a prepper or survival glock_pistol_locking_systemhandgun(s) for your personal and property protection regardless of a Bug In or a Bug Out option.  This includes any scenario involving a forced escape from your primary residence in the face of any type of SHTF, natural, unnatural, social or political.

By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

The One Gun Approach

One of the approaches many preppers take is to settle on selecting one handgun, pistol or revolver survival_shtf_glock_pistolsystem.  For purposes here, it does not matter what brand you elect to buy.  There are too many to evaluate here including Glock, Beretta, Springfield Armory, Ruger, Smith and Wesson, Kimber, Colt, HK, Browning, CZ, FNH, Remington, SIG-Sauer or whatever.  That bottom line choice, though a difficult one, still resides with the individual prepper and their needs, desires, and interests.

Related: Glock 42 Review

The “one gun” approach permits the prepper and his support family and/or prepper team to consolidate on a single handgun in one caliber with magazines, support gear, ammo, carry pouches, cleaning supplies and all else for just the one gun system.  Everybody has and uses the same gun, same everything.  This approach goes a long way toward simplifying a lot of things.

It also permits the concentration of training and practice on the one gun.  Regardless of who you are or where you are in the house, vehicle, or Bug Out hideaway, that person only has to concern themselves with deploying one gun they should know intimately well.

Supply for everything becomes simple.  One stock of extra magazines loaded with the same caliber or type of ammunition, one holster, one magazine holder(s), carry gear, and all else.  It is a strong and plausible approach.  It also has economic benefits as well.

The Multiple Gun Approach

Other prepper contacts I know go this route.  They have a full complement of handgun firearms in 3-4 epic banner 250x250 evolution of portable water filtrationdifferent calibers including .357/.38 Special, .380 ACP, 9mm, and .45 ACP.  They have one or more handgun models in each of these without regard to consolidating to one brand or gun type.  They simply want and argue for the option of different power levels, and the flexibility to own and use multiple handguns.

Also Read: The Hurricane Katrina Pistol

Admittedly in their cases, most of them are highly organized so everyone knows what is what, where it all is, and have been fully oriented to each gun.  Though they admit this took some time in training and range work, they are satisfied with their multiple gun choice.  The extra expenditure of funds for ammo and support gear does not bother this group.  

So, here’s the Deal

Which do you think is the better approach?  Preppers tend to love guns.  Some are even collectors of modern and older firearms.  Nothing wrong with that.  But in practice, in a SHTF survival scenario, which is the better way to go?

I can understand the point in wanting at least one handgun of superior power, a .357 Magnum, 10mm, or .45 ACP.  Those could be more difficult for women or youth to shoot well, but maybe not.  Common sense might dictate to elect just one handgun model, one caliber, and one set of support gear and supplies.  What is your approach?

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Australian National Security. Terrorism.

Click here to view the original post.
I did a quick search on the net this morning to see if there were any disaster preparedness surveys or government advice sheets. I found nothing to date. I find this quite amazing. In & post WW2 there was advice on needed supplies, how to preserve foods, how to save money when purchasing food, growing your own food etc etc. The world has changed. My advice, Be Prepared!

Australian National Security. Terrorism.

I did a quick search on the net this morning to see if there were any disaster preparedness surveys or government advice sheets. I found nothing to date. I find this quite amazing. In & post WW2 there was advice on needed supplies, how to preserve foods, how to save money when purchasing food, growing your own food etc etc. The world has changed. My advice, Be Prepared!

Viparspectra Review: Are These LEDs Worth It?

Click here to view the original post.

The post Viparspectra Review: Are These LEDs Worth It? is by
Kevin and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

With the explosion of hydroponics, indoor growing, and the LED grow light industry, it’s no surprise that there are a ton of companies in the market right now. A few years ago, LEDs were all the rage and companies were touting incredible yields with low energy costs… It wasn’t completely false, but the marketing claims were far … Read more

The post Viparspectra Review: Are These LEDs Worth It? is by
Kevin and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Socialism in Venezuela: The Ultimate Cautionary Tale

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by Isabella

The devastating crisis in Venezuela has been going on for years, though mostly below the fold of our nation’s mainstream newspapers and websites. And as the citizens of this once prosperous, oil-rich nation are literally running out of trash to rummage through for sustenance, leftist celebrities who once praised the socialist government of Hugo Chavez are strangely silent.

A few decades ago, the enigmatic Chavez was promising to reserve the great wealth of Venezuela’s oil reserves for the poor, the people he identified with and vowed to help. He was praised around the world for his cutting-edge economic plan and being a champion of the poor and of “el pueblo”, the people.

Today, in the wake of his legacy, the people of Venezuela wake up at the crack of dawn to spend their whole day in food lines for the mere chance of being able to bring home groceries. Stray dogs, cats, and even pets are diminishing as they are killed and eaten for sustenance, even the animals in the zoo aren’t safe from the starving population.

Meanwhile, tankers full of Venezuelan oil sit in the Caribbean, unsold, because the government can’t even afford the maintenance and port fees to bring them into harbors to be sold.

Where did it all go wrong?

So how did this all happen? How did a dream of a utopia for the people turn into such a nightmare?

Well, the short answer, of course, is socialism. One of the reasons you will not hear the crisis in Venezuela spoken of often among leftist politicians and celebrities is that it is a perfect example of the failures bigger government, nationalized industries, and the redistribution of wealth. These kinds of policies are exactly what these leftist pundits want to see expanded here in the United States.

They also happen to be the exact same policies that led to this devastating crisis in Venezuela.

Let’s take a look at exactly how socialist policies is destroying Venezuela.

First Roots of Freedom in Venezuela

Venezuela is an incredibly fertile and resource-rich country that, at one time, was the most prosperous country in South America. Once a colony of Spain, Venezuela gained their independence in 1810 and, beginning in 1870, under the leadership of Antonio Guzman Blanco, they were able to attract foreign investors into their economy and modernize transportation and education.

In the first half of the 20th Century after the discovery of oil in Venezuela, it slowly grew to become the world’s single largest oil importer. While the government bounced back and forth from military dictatorships, coups, and several attempts at democratic rule, in 1958 the people of Venezuela were finally able to secure a democratic leader in Romulo Betancourt of the Democratic Action Party, who was the winner of a free election.

While the 70’s saw massive economic growth amid a huge oil boom, the 80’s brought instability and violence, as the people took to the streets in riots during a depression that resulted in hundreds killed and the implementation of martial law.

The Rise of the Chavistas

In the 90’s, Hugo Chavez led two failed coup attempts and was imprisoned for two years as a result. 120 people were killed in the government’s effort to suppress these coups. However in 1998, a few years after the impeachment of President Perez, Chavez was elected president.

Chavez’ election spurred the ‘Bolivarian Revoultion’, after Simón Bolívar, the so-called “liberator” of Venezuela who was a political and military leader in the early 1800’s. With Chavez at the helm, this revolution saw dramatic changes in the constitution of Venezuela, as well as the establishment of new political parties.

This was when socialism began to take flight in Venezuela. Chavez implemented dramatic new socialist and populist-inspired economic policies, all in the name of helping the poor and leveling the wealth in oil-rich Venezuela. At the time, oil prices were high, so there was a lot of wealth to level.

In 2001, he passed 49 new laws aimed at nationalizing industry and redistributing wealth. At this time, critics began to express concern that he was trying to follow the Cuban model of consolidating all economic power to the government.

The Socialist Foundation

Over the next decade, the socialist dream of Chavez began to blossom. Surviving an attempted coup in 2004, he begins to break up Venezuela’s large land estates, which ranchers said was an attack on private property. Of course, attacking private property is exactly what socialists do.

He also moved to restrict the flow of information to the people of Venezuela by imposing harsh regulations regarding the slander of public figures in his government. And, as opposition parties boycotted elections, his followers began to dominate parliament.

In 2006 and 2007, the government continues to tighten its grip. Chavez signed a massive arms deal with Russia, marking a significant shift in Venezuela’s relationship with the United States, which Chavez had always harshly criticized. He also won his third consecutive presidential term in a massive margin.

At this point, he began to nationalize major media and telecommunication industries in Venezuela. His government also refused to renew the broadcasting licence of a major network that had been critical of his regime. This prompted massive riots in response as citizens wake up to the implications of Chavez’ intentions.

Chavez’s Grip Begins to Tighten

As Chavez attempted to nationalize more of the oil industry, major US oil companies Exxon Mobil and ConocoPhilips refused to turn over their operations to the government, and so Chavez expropriated them.

At the end of 2007, Chavez began to experience his first serious drop in support, as voters failed to pass a referendum that would expand government power over private property and the Central Bank of Venezuela. He still managed to nationalize one of the country’s private banks the following year.

In 2008 and 2009, although opposition began to gain some control in parliament and even the Caracas mayoral election, a referendum was also passed that abolished limits on presidential terms, giving Chavez a clear path towards dictatorship, in theory.

He also began to cultivate more of a relationship with Russia, by signing an oil and gas cooperation accord and participating in war exercises together.

In 2009, Chavez devalued the bolivar for the first time, by 17% against the US dollar for “priority” imports, and by 50% so-called non-essential items, in an attempt to boost revenue from oil exports. Devaluing the bolivar was a practice his successor Maduro would follow, eventually leading to the devastating poverty we witness in Venezuela today.

The Beginnings of a Crisis

In 2010, massive floods in the country provided Chavez with an unexpected opportunity to gain more power. The phrase “never let a good crisis go to waste” comes to mind. Many begin to fear this slippery slope will lead to full-on authoritarianism.

In the following years, price control continued as the government tried to protect against inflation. Any companies that did not comply were threatened with expropriation. Media companies face massive fines to avoid being taken over by the government.

In 2012, Chavez won his fourth term in office. However, in 2013, he passes away after a long battle with cancer. Nicolas Maduro, the current president, won the emergency election in a narrow margin. He had been Chavez’s’ chosen successor, so he vowed to continue Chavez’ mission.

As inflation rose, the National Assembly gave Maduro emergency powers for a year, which prompted mass protests across the country. He promptly used these new powers to limit profit margins.

The Foundation Begins to Crumble

In 2014, protests spread across the country in favor of the opposition party. The government accused the opposition of trying to attempt a coup, and used this reasoning to violently suppress the uprisings.

The Maduro government continued in 2014 to implement harsh cuts in public spending as oil prices began to drop dramatically. Through 2014 and 2015, as the opposition party began to be more vocal and gain more public support, the Maduro party pushed back by accusing various figures of assassination and coup attempts.

In 2015, the opposition party briefly wins 2/3 majority in the National Assembly, only to have several of its members resign under pressure from the Socialist-controlled Supreme Court.

In 2016, Maduro continued to fight inflation by continuing to devalue the bolivar and restricting public spending. However, his government also refused to allow nationalized oil companies to trade privately. This spurred mass outrage from the citizens of Venezuela, which is what caught the attention of the international media.

Now What?

This year, 2017, tensions have come to a head. Constant clashing and power struggles between the Socialists and opposition parties in the government have been reflected in the populace by constant clashing in the streets, including several young men being shot and killed by the police.

The Venezuelan government’s attempts to violently respond to the protests as well as suppress the opposition parties has caught criticism from many other Latin American countries, concluding in Venezuela’s decision to leave the Organization of American States, or OAS over pressure to end the harsh government crack-down of opposition.

While the leftist media here in the United States is convinced there is a constitutional crisis here in the United States nearly every week, Venezuela has been in the midst of a constitutional crisis for at least six months, as Maduro prepares a referendum on a new constitution to be written.

 

Thousands of protests have erupted in response to the newly proposed constitution, as many claim it will be very un-democratic. People have also been protesting the drastic food shortages and lack of necessities such as toilet paper, running water, and basic medical supplies.

 

Given the climate of conflict, protest, and devistating poverty of the last year in Venezuela, there is no telling what will happen in the face of the latest move from the new constitutional congress.

On August 8th, the new constitutional assembly declared themselves superior to all other branches of government. This is the most drastic move yet from the Maduro government to crackdown on opposition party politicians and voices.

“Opposition lawmakers said they were barred from entering the gold-domed legislative palace after security forces led by Rodriguez broke into congress late Monday,” Time reports.

The Ultimate Cautionary Tale of Socialism

What has happened in Venezuela should stand as a stark warning to the world of just how impossible it is for socialism to succeed. Wealth redistribution seemed promising when oil prices were high, but companies were nationalized and prices dropped, the government ultimately had no choice but to expand their own power as the people began to starve.

The more the people–the very people Chavez claimed to identify with and want to help–spoke out against what the government was doing, the more Maduro tried to consolidate power to himself.

The Maduro government isn’t interested in a healthy economy, it isn’t interested in creating wealth for its people, it’s only interested in keeping its own ideology alive, even as everything wrong with this ideology is causing Venezuela to crumble around it.

Most ironic of all, of course, is that Venezuela has turned into the kind of country that most Marxists think they’re fighting against. While socialists claim they want to eradicate poverty and empower the people, this socialistic system has damaged the economy so drastically that the people are hungry while tankers of oil sit rotting in the Caribbean.

And Chavez’s daughter is the wealthiest person in Venezuela.

So remember this the next time you hear a politician extolling the benefits of nationalized industry or harsh restrictions on private corporations. Venezuela is an incredibly fertile land and, with a free market economy, could easily be the wealthiest nation in Latin America. This would generate wealth for everyone, both at the top and the bottom.

Chavez’s socialism has done nothing but drain the wealth out of Venezuela and leave the people angry and starving. It is unlikely that any real change will happen in Venezuela without much more bloodshed, starvation, and death.

So how is that for a cautionary tale?

Anniversary Weekend

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This coming weekend the wife and I will be celebrating our 27th wedding anniversary. We will be taking off work Friday and Monday to make it a four day event.
I gave her a choice of several different locations we have not seen. For instance, A boat trip to see Niagara Falls, Wine tasting in Napa Valley, Eat lobster tails in Main, A spa weekend in South Carolina and so on. I know those are a little on the extravagant side, but for the past few years we have not done really anything to celebrate putting up with each other.

The deal is, about three months ago I traded in our bumper pull camper and bought her a new 5th wheel.

We have only used it twice and she was really wanting to do something that included us and the camper.
Being we are not the sitting around and do nothing types, we plan to relax on the rivers in Beavers Bend Oklahoma doing some fly fishing. We try to go there once a year anyway and have not been this year so this makes a great opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. This will be good and way cheaper than the options I gave her.

Other updates,
This past weekend we looked at a hunting lease twenty minutes South of Hope Arkansas. I went ahead and bought in and now trying to gather all the supplies. It has been a few years since I have been a part of a lease and did not have the equipment needed to effectively hunt out of town. I plan on keeping the nearby areas hunted last year here at the house ready to hunt whenever I am not out of town. This lease will be good for deer and turkey.

Tiny House,
The kitchen is finally done. Cabinets and floors are painted and pantry installed. No more prepping off of plywood counter tops and and sweeping unfinished floors.
The plan was to build on the outdoor deck, kitchen and eating/sitting areas this fall and have more room, but now hunting took that money and time away from me. So maybe next year instead of an outdoor kitchen I may build on a man cave/adventure cave with a wine and cigar bar.
My wife is saying I am getting cityfied and “High Kept.” Who wouldn’t want a log cabin room, fake bear skin rug on the floor, watching the game on a flat screen, with a fat cigar and enjoying a class of chardonnay? LOL

I hope I will have some pictures from the all the fish we catch this weekend,
Later
Jerry  

Weird Tricks That Extend The Shelf Life Of Bananas

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Weird Tricks That Extend The Life Of Bananas

Image source: Pixabay.com

There’s a reason so many of us have loose bananas floating around our freezers: We’re hoarders. (Just kidding!)

Bananas, of course, ripen quickly and once they’re past their prime, all we can do is compost them or freeze them for baking, smoothies or ice cream. But what if there were a way to slow down the ripening process so that they keep longer? Well, there is! There are two ways, actually.

Refrigerate

If you’ve ever tossed a banana into the fridge, then you know that the peel turns black much more quickly than if you leave the fruit at room temperature. But, interestingly, the fruit itself stays fresh longer. Cooks Illustrated reports an experiment they performed on refrigerated vs unrefrigerated bananas. By disregarding the blackened peels, and doing daily taste tests, they found bananas stayed fresh for 5 days longer in the fridge than at room temperature.

Goofy Gadget Can Recharge Your Laptop — And Jump-Start Your Car!

Refrigeration causes two things to happen. First, it makes the cell walls of the peel break down more quickly, which causes the peel discoloration. But it also slows the production of ethylene gas, which bananas produce and release naturally, and which causes the fruit itself to ripen. By slowing the production of ethylene, you also slow the ripening process.

Wrap the Stems

If you don’t want to deal with the blackened peels of refrigerated bananas, another way to extend their “best before” date is to wrap their stems in plastic wrap. Wrapping the stems prevents ethylene from escaping so that it’s not transmitted to the rest of the fruit; as a result, the bananas ripen more slowly. Indeed, with plastic-wrapped stems, bananas should stay at optimal ripeness for an additional 3-5 days.

Wrapping the stems when the bananas are still in a bunch is not terribly effective. It’s better to separate the bananas and wrap each stem individually.

Of course, there’s something to be said about warm banana bread, fresh from the oven, and smothered in butter. If a banana or two gets overripe, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, right?

What are your tips for extending the life of bananas? Share them in the section below:

EDC Saves the day! 3 lessons Learned

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A couple days ago something happened to me that in my opinion perfectly illustrates what EDC is all about.

My wife needed something from the grocery store down the street, just a couple blocks away. Its pretty close but I like going with her so that she doesn’t have to carry heave stuff.  I was wearing just underwear and a tshirt. It’s pretty hot around here in Costa del Sol this time of the year. So I quickly put on my 5.11 taclite shorts and head out with her. Since it was just a couple blocks I didn’t bother checking my EDC much, it was just what I had in my pant’s pockets.

As we approached the store,  we saw these two cars parked, several people were screaming and a baby crying.

Some bystanders were staring but didn’t want to get involved in what seemed to be a family dispute, but there was a lot of shouting and crying, mostly around the baby which the woman kept pressed against her chest.

My wife told me not to get involved, and usually I wouldn’t but the baby crying was a bit too much. It crossed my mind that if that was my wife and that was one of my kids, I would want people to help and not just stand there.

I approached them and asked what’s going on but I already saw that the baby’s ear was somehow stuck to its mother chest.

“Scissors! Scissors!” they all started shouting when they notice me. I had my Leatherman Charge with me so I brought it out.

Somehow the baby got its earring stuck awfully bad in its mother’s bunched up top, pulling at the ear almost to the point of tearing the baby’s ear off, which looked like an elastic band about to snap.

The Leatherman Charge has a hook for cutting belts but push cutting was not an option. The baby’s ear was pulling extremely tight and I saw no chance of using the hook without ripping the baby’s ear. Even the serrated emergency blade seemed like a poor option, so I used the main blade which out of pure coincidence I had sharpened razor sharp a few days ago. All this went through my mind in a fraction of a second.

So the baby was desperately crying, the mother was crying, what I assume was the grandma was pulling and holding the clothes for me to cut and the idiot husband and some other guy were shouting and pushing at the mother for her to stay still and none of them would stop moving. And I had like 1/4 of an inch of room to put the tip of the knife through and cut, which I did. As soon as I touched the fabric it cut through it like a hot knife through butter. The baby was free with a piece of cloth still attached to her earing and the mom had a big hole on her top.

Anyway, never thought I’d end up using my Leatherman for that in a million years. It was as these things usually are, completely unexpected.

After a decade of continuous use, I can say my Leatherman Charge has been the tool that I have used the most, the one that has been more critical when needed and the last one I would want to part with. I just cant recommend it enough. If its too pricy, the Leatherman Wave is every bit as functional, just make sure you get the pocket clip for it and carry the thing every day.

Leatherman – Charge TTI Multi-Tool, Stainless Steel with Nylon Sheath (FFP) $169.85

A few lessons learned:

1)Carry your edc. You never know when it may come in handy. Even more critical, you never know when it can prevent serious injury or even death. This time it was a baby’s ear. Sometimes it’s a rope or cord, or wire around someone’s neck. Or clothes or hair caught in machinery. A couple years ago I remember a kid dying when accidentally tangling cord around his neck and slipping in a slide in a playground. You just never know, but having a cutting tool, wire cutters and saw to break someone free may be critical when seconds count.

2) Layers work. That day I left home without my wallet, which I take with me 99% of the time when I walk out the door. I could have easily left behind the tools I ended up needed. My point is that you need to plan on screwing up, and here is where layers of tools make a big different. My keys are that core layer. There I have my trusty Minichamp and a spare AAA flashlight. If nothing else, I have those. Since I need the keys to open the door and get back into my house, chances are very slim that I’ll leave home without them.

3)Keep your EDC in top notch condition. Your tools need to be checked and serviced. Your CCW needs to be fired often, your ammo replaced, magazines checked. Your flashlight needs to have working batteries, and your knife should be as sharp as realistically possible. Some people that carry knives carry DULL blades. This simply isn’t acceptable. I’ve used the blade in my Leatherman Charge more than any other knife in recent years. It’s visibly worn but it is razor sharp and I touch it up when I notice it isn’t biting as much. In this case, like when a baby’s ear is stuck and you need to cut with as little effort as possible, then it’s crucial for that blade to be like a scalpel.

Take care people, and don’t leave your EDC behind!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Article – How Google is secretly recording YOU through your mobile…and storing the creepy audio files

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DID you know that Google has been recording you without your knowledge?

The technology giant has effectively turned millions of its users’ smartphones into listening devices that can capture intimate conversations – even when they aren’t in the room.

Just for the sake of curiosity, I followed the directions in this article to see if there was aything on me. Apparently, at some point I had turned of most of the tracking stuff. But not all. My YouTube viewing history was there. (Fortunately, it was my viewing history for only Youtube… IYKWIMAITYD)

I have met some people who gently insist that, when having conversations with them in person, the phones be disabled or left elsewhere. Perhaps there’s some merit to that.

Interesting article and very much worth reading from a privacy standpoint. You’d have to be insane to think that there aren’t .gov actors who take advantage of these sorts of things.

Making a difference in India

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I might be called a “climate change denier”, but it would be more accurate to say that I do believe in climate change, I just don’t believe it’s caused by man. Of course I understand we can have a small, local influence, it’s quite possible (and has happened) that we can mess up things on a local scale, but I don’t believe it’s enough to cause GLOBAL changes… (ducking from the rocks I just felt fly by my head LOL).

That being said, I do believe there are cyclical changes, the earth heats up, the earth cools down, and as these things occur over long and short cycles – with or without man being on the scene, I wonder why we aren’t working toward creating technology and methods that would allow us to live in harmony and thrive in the changes that are coming? I can see the corruption of the powers that be, those who want to stay in charge no matter what, let’s kick them to the curb and work towards learning to take advantage of the coming changes so that we can continue to live and eat.

I listened to a NPR story about people in India who are doing just that, instead of trying to fight or slow down global climate change, they are focusing their efforts on changing how they farm and live to work with nature. They are experimenting with new and different crops than they have traditionally grown, they are learning what works and what doesn’t, that really excites me.

Listen to the podcast from NPR about what these ingenious people in India are doing, let me know what you think 🙂

Original article can be found here:
http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2017/08/20/543881831/as-indias-climate-changes-farmers-in-the-north-experiment-with-new-crops

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Now They’re Destroying Christopher Columbus Monuments

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Now They’re Targeting Christopher Columbus Monuments

Vandals continued the targeting of historical monuments and statues in recent days – including one of Christopher Columbus.

“This is happening everywhere,” Kevin Caira, the president of the Sons of Italy’s Commission for Social Justice, told The Baltimore Sun.

Caira spoke after an unidentified person destroyed the lettering on a statue of Christopher Columbus in Baltimore’s Herring Run Park Monday.

Put God Back Into History And Teach Your Kids What They Won’t Learn Anywhere Else!

The person used a sledgehammer to smash letters that read: “Sacred to the memory of Chris. Columbus, Octob. XII, MDCCVIIIC” on the 225-year-old monument, The Sun reported. The destruction was recorded and posted on YouTube, although faces were hidden.

“Christopher Columbus symbolizes the initial invasion of European capitalism into the Western Hemisphere,” a male narrator said in the video. “Columbus initiated a centuries-old wave of terrorism, murder, rape, slavery, genocide, ecological degradation and capitalist exploitation of labor in the Americas.”

“Racist monuments to slave owners and murderers have always bothered me,” the narrator added, calling the monuments “hate-filled” and symbols of white supremacy.

He dismissed Columbus and George Washington as genocidal terrorists.

“Part of our evolution as humans requires tearing down monuments to destructive forces and tearing down systems that maintain them,” he said.

The statue is the oldest monument to Christopher Columbus in the United States.

Other Statues Under Attack

Other monuments defaced include:

  • The Lincoln Memorial in Washington. The National Park Service reported that someone sprayed the words “F**K law” on one of its columns on Aug. 16.
  • A 114-year-old Confederate memorial in Baltimore was covered with red paint on Aug. 14, The Sun reported.
  • A monument to Confederate troops at Arizona’s state capitol in Phoenix was vandalized on Aug. 17, CNN reported.
  • Columns were painted red at a private Confederate Memorial Park in Tampa on Aug. 13, CNN reported.
  • A peace monument that depicted a Confederate soldier was defaced in Georgia.
  • A bust of Lincoln was set on fire and defaced in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood.
  • Houston resident Andrew Cecil Schenk wanted to go even farther. He was caught trying to plant a bomb on a statue of a Confederate officer named Richard Dowling, NBC News

It looks as if no monument is safe in America.

What is your reaction? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review

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Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review

TV personality knives have always gotten a bad rap from the bushcraft community. Far too often companies overplay their hands and throw in marketing crap into a tool that is supposed to be practical in nature. This pessimism isn’t helped with products like the first “Survivorman” knife I reviewed, which if you remember didn’t go […]

This is just the start of the post Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!


Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.

Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review

Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review

TV personality knives have always gotten a bad rap from the bushcraft community. Far too often companies overplay their hands and throw in marketing crap into a tool that is supposed to be practical in nature. This pessimism isn’t helped with products like the first “Survivorman” knife I reviewed, which if you remember didn’t go […]

This is just the start of the post Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!


Helle Temagami Les Stroud Survival Knife Review, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.

Lesson Learned: When “Prepping” Shows Up on YOUR Doorstep!

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Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: A contribution from valknut79,  an important topic that can come to roost on any of our doorsteps at a moments notice, timely advice.

For quite a long time, I was a solo prepper.  My wife knew about my strange little hobby, but didn’t support or discourage it, and I was left to use my office as my primary prepping space for quite some time.  I managed well, and didn’t think much of it until disaster struck.  My wife lost her job, and it was now up to me to provide entirely for the family.  At the time, she made quite a bit more than I did, and we were in jeopardy of losing our home.

  

Preparedness suddenly went from being a strange hobby to being an intelligent way of life.  There was an indeterminate amount of time in our lives where we would be living on only 40-60% of what it would take to pay our bills and maintain our lifestyle.  We made some simple changes – our daughter was unrolled from day care since my wife would now be home to care for her.  We briefly considered selling our second car.  We backed down to minimum payments on the credit cards and mortgage payments.  We made an effort to save electricity and turn off all the lights every time we left the room.

The biggest life change we made though?  We went grocery shopping once every other week instead of once every four days.  We dipped into the food storage that I had kept in my prepping supply upstairs instead, and used our gardening plot as a means of true financial survival, turning our $2 packet of seeds into three weeks worth of lettuce or beets.

The branches that fell from the trees in back went from being a nuisance to being a fuel source for our fire pit, which we used as a grill instead of using the more expensive charcoal.

When she found a job again a few months later, and things went back to normal, my wife was surprised at how little losing her large paycheck made it for our family.  Preparedness was no longer strange, it was practical.  Now, my wife is somewhat a prepper with me.  She’s not into the whole SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situations, but she does now see the value of storing food (not water), making energy-saving changes to the home, and building up on skills needed for camping, gardening, and so forth. Losing a job is not a great way to get into the realm of preparedness but it brought the point home for us.

As such I would like to offer some great ways that might work to turn your family from quiet non-supporters into full fledged participants in your family preparedness.

  

1. Talk About Current Events

It’s hard to talk about current events these days without sensing the inevitability of a real war perhaps with North Korea, Russia or the Middle East.  It’s hard to ignore the political turmoil and false democracy going on in Venezuela or Turkey and not envision some sort of collapse there.  It’s difficult to hear about and not react to stories about towns without water, such as have been populating the news in California, Minnesota and Michigan recently.  In all of these situations, the crisis can be minimized, and the fear can be subdued, with the power of preparedness.

Make current events a part of your family’s zeitgeist by talking about them at family meal times, and by introducing a short news program such as NPR’s Up First podcast to morning car rides.  As concerns, anxieties, and worries are brought up, you have an opportunity to discuss food rationing, wartime economy, nightmare weapon scares, EMPs, and more.

Our current events reviews eventually grew to the point where I decided to take some of our discussions and put them together in a binder to form the family safety and evacuation plan.  It sits in the basement near our camping supply, and in case of emergency, the whole family can reference the guide to figure out what our plans should be.

  

2. Find a Good Book to Recommend

Our house is full of books.  I think that they’re food for the mind, and a valuable source of information and wisdom in addition to entertainment.  In the realm of preparedness, there are thousands of books that you could choose to start your family on a journey.

I think it’s best to start with a story rather than a non-fiction book about homesteading, and I would target the younger members of your family.  If you can get them reading, your significant other is bound to get excited, and will likely join in so as to be part of the adventure.  My favorite choice for young people is theLife As We Knew It” series by Susan Pfeffer.

For adults, there’s quite a bit of variety.  Pick up a few different novels and see what strikes you.  If you’re into prepping for a pandemic event, then you might want to choose a different book than someone looking to prepare for wildfires or EMPs.  Franklin Horton, William Fortschen, and Steven Konkoloy are some authors with multiple styles of disaster and TEOTWAWKI novels.

  

3. Play a Game – Games are a great way to get people talking.

For board games, I’d recommend playing Pandemic.  This is a two to four player adventure game that involves players working cooperatively to cure different diseases as they pop up around the world.  This is a fun way to spend an hour with your family after dinner, and introduces the idea of potential End of the World situations, giving you some talking points to introduce the idea of future change and planning for inevitable disaster.  There are other “Would you rather?” style Q&A games that are made for Preppers, and even a choose your own adventure book like “Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse?” that are ideal for read-aloud adventures with your family.

Even video games shouldn’t be ignored.  Younger family members may not be able to be torn away from their screens, so use that to your advantage.  If your son or daughter has a modern video game console, chances are that they own a game from the Fallout series, which are post-apocalyptic shooting games with some survival elements.  If they have a phone, there are thousands of survivalist apps that provide “what if” situations that you can work your way out of.  Express an interest, and get involved with them in playing, and it will help give you another way to connect with them over the ideas of surviving in the wilderness, and what would happen if the world were to suddenly end.

4. Start a New Hobby

Preparedness is not all about disaster prep and storage.  That has always been my personal focus, but there is so much more that could be done.  Sometimes, it’s those other activities that can provide a launchpad into the world of preparedness.

As I mentioned above, we have a garden. Gardening for me is OK, but it’s something that I started largely because I felt like as a prepper, it was something that I had to do.  I love the benefits of fresh, basically free produce, but I really loathe doing a lot of the work and maintenance that it takes to make it all come together.  My wife?  She absolutely loves that garden.  She’d work there as her full-time job.  She does flowers in addition to veggies, and while not terribly practical, it gets her out in the garden and working.  If disaster strikes, she’ll be able to contribute to our food storage by growing things, that’s for certain.

My daughter is like me – we just don’t love planting.  We do love paintball.  If ever there was a sport or game that was perfect for teaching strategy, tactics, and at least a little bit about guns, then paintball is the way to go.  I’ve been able to take her out into the woods and teach her the little I know about stealth and tracking, and I’ve been able to do it while simultaenously giving her a gun and teaching her how to aim, use cover, and giving her an opportunity to do something she’s always wanted to do – shoot at her mother.  This is a very fun time for the two of us (my wife hates it), and there are definitely some survivalist teachings that are occurring in the moment.

    

Camping is another great hobby or activity that allows you to teach skills, and it can also foster a love of the outdoors and perhaps offer an opportunity to buy some of those cool camping supplies that might double as practical preparedness items. If none of this sounds appealing, consider the idea of taking the family to a shooting range, bringing home an archery kit for the backyard, having your son or daughter help you build them a lean-to shelter or tree house in the backyard, or doing a home improvement project together with your significant other to teach them how to use tools and do basic woodworking.

In Conclusion

One of the most important steps in preparing your family for a disaster or SHTF scenario is actually getting them to talk about preparing for a disaster or SHTF scenario.  If it’s not in their mindset, then what you teach won’t stick, and what you prepare yourself will not be as effective, especially without their support.

The four ideas mentioned above are not going to instantly change their minds.  You’re not going to hand your wife a book, tell her to read it, and then have her instantly start raising chickens in your backyard.  What these ideas will do is plant the seeds of why it’s important to do some of the various “prepper things” without having to talk about how the world is going to end tomorrow.  It’s a chance to offer “what would you do?” questions to get their minds turning, allowing them to see the ideas of preparedness as an important part of how they should live instead of as a fantasy realm of guns and hoarding.

As a lonely prepper, you’re limited to strictly what you can do, and if you’re at work and unable to make it home during a disaster, your family might not make it despite all of the help that you put in place at and around your home.  If you can involve them in the process, you can get more done, and have more fun doing it with the support of your loved ones.

The post Lesson Learned: When “Prepping” Shows Up on YOUR Doorstep! appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Van living is road to freedom

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“Living in a van, I can make money, be an artist, and travel three continents,” says Nathan Murphy, an accomplished amateur rock climber from Cornwall in the UK, who has spent the past two years fitting out and then travelling in his Ford Transit.

With the number of van conversions and purpose built motor homes at an all time high, what used to be a tiny subculture is going mainstream. The mobile life is no longer seen as a family vacation option. Improved technology, better camping gear, mobile phones and the internet mean it just as viable long term as owning a bricks and mortar home.

We have written about Nathan before, but recently he was featured in The Sun newspaper, and that was a reminder at how mainstream the lifestyle has become.

These days, retirees and students are just as likely to be buying a recreational vehicle if they can afford it, or converting a small van if they are on a budget. From snowbirds (the retirement generation seeking the sun) to snowflakes (as thin-skinned millennials are sometimes known) there is a growing realisation that a McMansion has too many overheads that eat into your freedom.Van living is a way to “make your life cheaper so you can do more with less.”
“Why engage in a system that is broken?” says Nate in an interview on the off-grid youtube channel. “I just don’t want to waste my entire life paying the bank interest.” There is a housing crisis affecting the generation that are leaving college now – because not enough homes are being built, and scarcity is keeping prices too high. “More and more people are choosing a different option,” says Nathan. “There are hundreds of thousands of people across Europe looking at alternatives – tiny homes, off-grid, van living. Its a huge trend.”

He was brought up in a big old house in Cornwall that needed constant works – which gave him the skills he uses van living.

“I can do a huge amount for very little money,and my rent is zero. I can do so many things that most people don’t dare to do – I just want to show people they can do it all,” by reducing their living costs to nearly zero, meaning they no longer need to be wage slaves.

The post Van living is road to freedom appeared first on Living Off the Grid: Free Yourself.

3 Overlooked Doomsday Prep Essentials

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Preparing for life after disaster requires superhuman organization. Hell, most of us have trouble keeping track of everything we have to remember in our current, convenience-filled reality, let alone keep track of survival essentials like food storage rotation. You’ve likely made a number of difficult decisions already — living after disaster will require a much leaner lifestyle, and that means preparing to give up much of what we take for granted. Maybe you’ve done that already, to make the transition easier.

There are some modern conveniences, however, which will be conspicuous in their absence. Preparing for the need, and stockpiling difficult-to-produce items now — well, you do that already anyway. Here are just a few priorities that often get overlooked, and that you might want to add to your stockpile list today:

  1. Tires

  2. There’s a lot of talk about the best vehicles for doomsday situations. No matter how advanced a vehicle is, none of them are designed to function in less-than-ideal conditions indefinitely, so the more preventative maintenance you can do, the better. A big part of that preventative maintenance is going to be picking a role for each vehicle and making sure you have a few sets of tires stockpiled away for that purpose.

    Mud & road tires

    Tire tread technology is improving all the time, and while it may not necessarily be a bad idea to run a vehicle with mud tires on asphalt, there are better ways to organize your fleet of survival vehicles. There is a lot of argument about whether mud tires are or aren’t safer, noisier, or less fuel efficient on asphalt; it seems to depend a lot on the brand you buy. In rural areas, if you’re expecting blocked roads, it might even be a better idea to just run muds all the time and have a few replacements on hand. But there is one reason to consider taking those muds off your road vehicle: fuel efficiency. When gas becomes a rare commodity, every little you can do to conserve will help. Low-rolling-resistance, fuel-efficient tires could be a good purchase for supply runs close to home or local patrols, to save your resources.

    Snow tires

    Your muds will work great in rain and light snowfall, but you’re going to want snow tires, plus replacement sets if your area gets battered by heavy winters. Unlike mud tires, these guys are absolutely not meant to be used on dry asphalt. The rubber is softer than other tires and will wear out quickly, especially in the heat. Store these away and break them out when the snow falls.

  3. Waste Treatment Systems

    Have you thought about where you’ll be dumping your garbage and refuse? Even if you pick a site that is away from the water sources you use, it will only be a matter of time before waste begins to seep into the groundwater, which could have disastrous effects for miles. Once that happens, it may well be beyond your ability to fix.

  4. There have been advancements recently in stand-alone, self-contained waste treatment systems that recycle gray and even black water. Some are complex, using solar energy to treat waste, and others are much simpler, making use of worms to create compost while cleaning the water.

    Even if you have plans for plumbing and waste disposal, don’t rely completely on infrastructure. Sanitary disposables are other examples of difficult-to-produce items that will make life a whole lot more bearable when the worst strikes.

  5. Metal Detectors

    This one might not be as immediately obvious, but I promise you won’t regret keeping one of these tools around.

  6. These days, metal detectors are generally used by hobbyists and amatuer fortune hunters, but other uses are emerging that could have significant value to the well-prepared family. A number of people have started using metal detectors for geocaching. I immediately thought of prep applications. If you have a fallback shelter location or a carefully charted escape route, it could be worth your while to leave dead drops for yourself along the route. Memorize the locations, bury supplies in metal containers, and keep a metal detector in your bug-out vehicle. Not needing to physically mark the exact dig location makes the drop a lot more secure.

    If you ever have to drop everything and leave supplies behind, or you’re caught out away from home, you’ll know that you can get right on the road and pick up your supplies along the way, rather than having to improvise.

I hope this has given you a few more things to think about in your disaster preparation process. Good luck out there.

About the Author: Brooke Faulkner’s mission in life is to be prepared for anything life throws at her. As a mother of two, more often than not that includes legos and snotty viruses. When she’s not writing, she can usually be found zipping around the wilderness on her ATV.

Rewriting History? On The Destruction Of Monuments

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Last week’s altercation in Charlottesville, Virginia has dominated the news all week long. Democrats, the media and even some Republicans have attacked the president mercilessly over his comments about the attack, faulting him over not condemning white supremacists in particular.

There’s absolutely no question at all, based upon the video evidence, that both sides went there spoiling for a fight.

While they still attack Trump for his statement, they have also publiclly stated that both sides were at fault, mentioning that the Antifa people showed up with body armor, helmets and clubs. If that isn’t being ready for violence, what is?

Nevertheless, both sides drew blood, gained a lot of media attention and made themselves to look much bigger than they really are.

One could easily think that these two groups represent the majority of the people on both the left and the right, when in reality they are both fringe groups. Sadly, a woman paid with her life for that perception to be made. If you ask me, it was a poor bargain.

What Was Behind This?

As more and more information comes out about last week’s riot, it’s looking more and more like a setup. I guess that shouldn’t be surprising, considering that so many of the violent protests that have happened since Donald Trump won the election have been staged. But the difference in this case, is that it appears that it was staged by both side, not just the progressive-liberal left.

My guess is that the Antifa thugs were there at the behest of the liberals, as they are funded by George Soros. Soros, Obama and the Clintons are all in bed together, working to destroy the country and prepare it for the socialist takeover of a one-world government. This is not the first time they’ve sent agitators into an area to stir up trouble, even if it is the first time they’ve had an open clash of this magnitude with the alt-right white supremacists.

But I wonder who paid the alt-right to attend? Was this actually a grass-roots event, sponsored by Neo-Nazis and the KKK? Or could it be that there is someone in the shadows, who is funding these groups as well? The fact that they were imported for the event, like the Antifa group was, is highly suspicious.

But what’s even more suspicious is the actions of the police, or maybe I should say their lack of action. There was very little police intervention at all, even though the event had been planned months in advance and there were police on-site. Yet the police didn’t even follow the car of the killer as he fled the scene.

This is because the police had received an order to stand down from the mayor, over their objections. Michael Singer, the mayor, is a Democrat.

According to a whistleblower on the police force, the reason why the police were told to stand down was for the purpose of igniting a race war. Such a war, if it were to occur, would be disastrous for our nation. Not only would it cause even more racial division than the race-baiters have already caused, but countless innocent lives would be lost.

Civil wars, tend to have more civilian casualties, not only because the fighters are civilians themselves, but because more innocent bystanders end up being hurt, due to the fighters’ overall lack of military training.

Do You Make These Mistakes That Kill Your Survival Defense?

Even so, it looks like Obama and others have been trying to push the country to such a war for several years now. The fiery rhetoric during Obama’s presidency, coupled with his outspoken support of groups like Black Lives Matter, has only emboldened such groups to take more and more action, including the killing of police officers.

What Caused the Demonstration?

The original demonstration by the alt-right was over the planned removal of a statue dedicated to General Robert E. Lee, a Confederate Civil War hero.

This is only the latest in a string of situations, where the left has demanded the removal of similar statues, much like they have demanded the elimination of the supposed Confederate Flag.

According to those on the political left, these statues are symbols of hate and slavery, because they symbolize the Confederacy.

Since the Confederate states separated from the Union over slavery causing the Civil War, anything having to do with the Confederacy is about hatred and slavery to them.

But to the people of the South, the Civil War wasn’t about slavery; it was about freedom and self-determination. They call it “The War of Northern Aggression.”

As states, they had decided to separate from the Union over differences, high amongst which was slavery.

To them, General Lee isn’t a hero because of slavery, but because he stood up to what they saw as a tyrannical government, much like George Washington stood up to the tyrannical government of King George the Third.

Nevertheless, seems like progressive liberals want to erase the Civil War from American history. Rather than look at it as a victory over slavery, they prefer to just look at the slavery. Apparently the fact that our ancestors took on this difficult issue and fought to bring it to an end doesn’t matter. All that matters is that slavery existed in the early days of the USA.

Actually, according to those on the left, the only slavery that has existed is the American slavery of Black Africans. Slavery of whites doesn’t matter. Slavery of women as sex slaves by ISIS doesn’t matter. Even the slavery of the entire people of Israel by the Egyptians, a well-documented historic fact, doesn’t matter. Only our own history of slavery, even though we defeated it.

Actually, the United States was the second country in the world to make slavery illegal, with only England preceding us. As with many civil rights issues, we have been a people to combat bigotry, hatred, prejudice and discrimination. It hasn’t been an easy battle, but it has been a battle we have fought.

Yet those on the left would rather forget the victory and concentrate on the reason it was necessary. For this reason, they want to erase slavery and the Civil War from history.

The efforts to remove statues of General Lee and other leaders in the south are part of this effort. Apparently in the left’s collective mind, if those symbols of the Confederacy can be removed, all remembrance of that slavery can go away.

But Lee wasn’t even a slave owner. He fought as part of the Confederate Army because he was a Virginian. As such, he was fighting for his state, in defense of state rights. He didn’t agree with slavery any more than we do today; but Virginia was his home, so he fought on their behalf.

Taking down his statue, because others in the south owned slaves, is declaring him guilty of their sins; something that our laws do not allow. But then, since when have Democrats ever cared about obeying the law? The only time they pay attention to the law is when they can use it to their benefit.

So What if We Remove all the Statues?

The alt-right protesters were there protesting the removal of Lee’s statue. While I personally think that their torch-lit march was not the best way of doing this, reminiscing back to the KKK, the First Amendment guarantees them the right to peaceful demonstration. As long as it remained peaceful, they were well within their rights. But then Antifa showed up and showed up read for war.

Ultimately, neither side accomplished anything constructive. All they did was garner a lot of media attention and make things worse. Both sides are to blame, just as President Trump said.

But what if they hadn’t protested? What if we allow the left to have their way and remove any statue they deem offensive? What then?

First of all, the more we allowed this, the more the left would demand. Their appetite for getting their way is insatiable. Removing every offensive statue in the country wouldn’t solve anything. All it would do is eliminate reminders of our nation’s history.

On the larger issue, that of rewriting history; that should never be allowed. The saying, “Those who forget the lessons of history are destined to repeat them” is true. We must remember our past and the grave error of slavery. If we don’t, we are setting our country up for failure. It may take a generation or more, but our descendants will end up making the same mistakes that our ancestors made.

Is that what we want? Is that what anyone wants? Can anything good actually come out of erasing our country’s history? No it can’t. We can’t afford the risk of what would happen, if we do.

I’m not a fan of our national guilt complex, but I will say this for it: as long as we recognize the errors of our past, they will help keep us from making those errors again. We need to remember our history of slavery; not to honor it, but to be reminded of how wrong it was.

Should we forget, I fear what we might do to our fellow man.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Is Eliminating Our Past A Good Idea?

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     I spoke to a friend the other day who had just returned from a trip to Ireland, and he was enthusiastic about his experience.  Like me, he is a lover of history, and he went and on about the historic sites he saw.  He was effusive about the castles, museums, and tours he went on that featured the struggles of ancient Ireland, the invasion of the Emerald Isle by the English, and the Crown policy of “plantation”, by which English and Scottish Protestant settlers displaced the Irish Catholic landowners.  That hostility and animosity is still a part of Ireland’s national character today.

     Likewise, my youngest sister has been visiting Prague, Czechoslovakia and the country of Poland this past week. She is sharing photos and her thoughts as she visits awe-inspiring 13th century churches and synagogues, the Jewish Quarter (ghetto), and the concentration camps where so many Jews were exterminated by men with evil hearts. 
     The hearts and minds of both my friend and my sister were moved and educated by seeing the rich history of these European countries.  The tour guides provided lots of insight about the historic events that took place among the ruins and majestic places they visited.  Monuments related the historic events that helped shape the current and modern country.  And the native inhabitants are eager to tell the stories of where they came from [historically], and which define who they are now.

     So, now I am forced to take a look at my own countrymen who seem unable to see the value in our history — both the good and the bad — and I wonder if we truly know who we are, and are we interested in being proud of who we’ve become.  I don’t usually like to engage in current political discussions on this blog, but I am deeply conflicted when I see our younger generations calling for the removal of our Confederate memorials and statues.  It is not because I am a racist, or I condone slavery — that would be a ludicrous accusation.  I simply do not understand how they think that destroying our memorials will 1) erase our history,  2) insure that it will never be repeated, or 3) change current attitudes, opinions or hostilities.  When they look upon these historical statues, do they really feel the memorials speak for continuing racist policies?

     First of all, they are showing their incredible lack of knowledge when they claim that every Southern general endorsed slavery; that the entire reason for the Civil War was to maintain the wicked, reprehensible, and immoral institution of slavery.  Perhaps they need to revisit the history books of decades ago [since I suspect the revisionist history being taught today is possibly in error].  But I do not want to wander into the weeds of debating what was in the hearts and minds of Southerners a century-and-a-half ago — anymore than I want to debate the reasons why today’s Southerners honor these memorials and statues. We can debate states rights, Southern pride, and white supremacy ad nauseam and never agree.
     I simply want to point out that the Irish and the Czechs and the Poles in Europe aren’t pulling down their statues or destroying their memorials — even though they could employ the same moral argument that some of the memorials are evidence of a shameful part of their past.  What’s the difference in our mindset?  Perhaps the Europeans recognize, somewhere in their souls, a principle that God voices in the Bible… we should remember our past sins, but not focus on them; that our past (both good and bad) has led us to where we are today.  But it does not have to identify who we have become.
      In fact, I believe it is important to understand that our past does not have to have an influence on our present behavior.  When we can recognize our sin, repent for it, and receive forgiveness, we can look at the past without any fear of repeating it.  And we don’t need to destroy the cultural memory of those sins as a safeguard against backsliding.  That doesn’t mean we ignore the ugliness of our past history. It just means we don’t have to hang on to it and let it continue to reinfect us.  It is important that we recognize we have evolved into a new identity… we must not forget where we came from, but instead, rejoice in who we’ve become.
     Do those who wish to destroy every shred of evidence of the dark days of slavery in our historical memory somehow think that it changes our history? Out of sight, out of reality, if you will?  If at the end of that awful war — which resulted in 620,000 deaths; nearly half of the 1.26 million Americans who have died in the nation’s wars — reconciliation could take place and Christ-like forgiveness offered between our countrymen, why is there so much hate and vitriol today over the past?
     Why can we not look upon the aftermath of the Civil War and see that we, as a nation, did not suffer decades of guerrilla wars as some nations have endured after their own civil wars?  Why can we not see that the nation moved forward, despite ongoing racial struggles, and we have much to be proud of? It has been a long and difficult struggle, but there has been progress. Is there still racial prejudice and dark souls among men?  Yes, and there always will be until Jesus comes back and removes the instigator of such evil.
     But just because a statue of Robert E. Lee exists somewhere on a town square, it does not mean we are at the same place in our national character as we were 156 years ago.  That statue honors a man torn by a national debate that nearly destroyed our nation, yet he could say at the end of the Civil War, “I have fought against the people of the North because I believed they were seeking to wrest from the South its dearest rights. But I have never cherished toward them bitter or vindictive feelings, and I have never seen the day when I did not pray for them.”  Did he own slaves?  Disturbingly, the answer is yes. And there is no amount of rationalization that can justify that fact. There are many men throughout the world from that time who will have to stand before the Lord on Judgment Day and account for that sin.
     And removing his statue will not erase the dark shadow that hung over this nation for four long and bloody years. Only the blood of Jesus can do that.  And I pray that the same evil influence that whispered hate and enmity in the ears of our ancestors, will not find minds willing to embark on another civil war.  I guess we will find out… more statues and memorials are coming down by the day.  The question to be answered is this … when the last statue comes down, the last street name is changed, and the last reminder of the injustice perpetrated against our fellow man is totally eradicated from our cultural conscience and memory, will we all then be able to live in harmony and peace?
     Will the absence of stone and iron memorials change the hearts of those who are intent on hate? Will we at last, as a nation, be free of the temptations of the Enemy and love our neighbor as ourself? I contend that it will be the renewing our minds [to be like Christ] that will ultimately eliminate the poison that is spreading through our national discourse.  Perhaps then we can begin to listen to each other and live in true harmony.
     I wish it was as easy as pulling down a monument.  I denounce our national sin of slavery, and any attempt to limit a man from becoming all that God intended him to be … just as I decry our current national dialogue that seems intent on destroying our unity.  We don’t have to let our past failures continue to divide us. Let us look towards building new memorials and testaments to a unified future.  There is a bigger picture here… looking at all that God has delivered us from and looking forward to all He wants to do in this amazing nation!  Let it begin today!

Colossians 3:12-14   “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity”.

      

   

      

Complimentary Foods For Main Course Meals

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A recent comment on Modern Survival Blog had some great insight regarding complimentary foods for one’s long term food storage or deep pantry. The topic is related to food items you might add to your deep pantry. More specifically foods that would complement primary ‘bulk’ foods for the “main course”. Comment from “So Cal Gal”:   …took a hard look at my food inventory. This time, instead of just listing items, I listed about 20 main course meals I could make with the foods I usually stock, and the alternative cooking sources we would have in a SHTF scenario. Then

The post Complimentary Foods For Main Course Meals appeared first on Modern Survival Blog.

Blackout: How You Can Act Decisively If an EMP Strikes at Work

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[Editor’s Note: One thing is for certain if an EMP occurs while many of us are away at work, the city quickly can become a death trap. As writer“, Jeremiah Johnson warns, “Definitive action taken at the critical point is critical to your survival.” Having a plan in place and supplies will give you that critical edge you need to survive.]

 

ReadyNutrition Readers, this is Part 2 of a 3-part series dealing with immediate actions to be taken in the event of an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) attack.  You can read Part 1 here. In the last segment, we covered what you should do if you’re on the road heading to or from work, or traveling.  Now we are going to detail some actions and preparations for your workplace.  Keep in mind: there will be a “blending” of these parts in actual practice, as to move from one locale to another, you will use the information presented in Part 1 when traveling.  All the parts should complement one another.

I also think it would be a good idea to take listed items and burn off an extra copy as a form of a “checklist,” as not many people have perfect memories (myself included), and it could help you out in the time of trouble and eliminate the need for guesswork.  Let’s start off with a scenario.

Let’s start off with a scenario.

You are an office worker in Anytown, a small midwestern city who works in a 7-story building located on the eastern 1/3 of the town.  The direction of your home from work is toward the East.  You are sitting at your desk with a window facing the west, and it’s about 10:00 am.  Suddenly, a flash of light catches your attention in the sky, and then it disappears.  Simultaneously, all the lights in the office go out, as does your desk computer.  No backup lights come on.  You look at your watch, and it’s dead.  You pick up your desk phone, and there is no dial tone.  There are murmurings from coworkers, and people are shuffling into an open area with a conference table.  You have just been hit by an EMP attack, and it appears that you have already punched out early, and probably for good.

The scenario will be played out throughout the United States.  Now is the time to act. Those who are preparedness minded must keep this in mind: Definitive action taken at the critical point is critical to your survival.

10 Emergency Items to Have in Your Workplace

I have written articles similar in nature to this subject that you may wish to peruse.  What is on your person?  In your desk?  In a locker (if you have one) on the premises?  Let us examine some of the items it would be beneficial to have on your person at all times:

  1. Flashlight (with extra batteries)
  2. Watch (that will not be affected by an EMP or need batteries)
  3. Leatherman/Gerber multi-tool
  4. A good folding knife with a locking blade
  5. Matches and/or a lighter
  6. Some type of firearm for your defense with ammunition for it… (Note: this is, to paraphrase Alice in Chains, Your Decision…you will have to weigh your options)
  7. Pen and writing paper/note cards
  8. Transistor radio that works with a battery and an earphone-attachment
  9. Having an NBC gas mask and anti-radiation pills in your workplace could be a lifesaver if an EMP may be followed by radiological and nuclear consequences.

Flashlights

You are going to need a light source if battery-powered lights do not switch on and there isn’t any backup power source.  That small Maglite in your pocket may do the trick: the simplest of circuits will probably be safe and still working…a flashlight is one of them.  All the rest of the items are self-explanatory, except for the pen and writing paper.  These you’ll need to either make calculations, leave a note for someone, or copy any kind of relevant information that you may find.

Transistor Radios

Regarding the transistor radio, you will want to see if you can hear any kind of emergency information that you may be able to use.  The earphone/ear-buds you want to have for OPSEC…you don’t need to advertise that you have a radio.  More.  You don’t want anyone to hear where you are or give away your position with the noise from a radio.

Emergency Exits

Now, in previous articles, I had recommended walking the route and counting the steps from your desk to your vehicle, or from your desk to the front street, if you don’t have vehicle parking in your building.  You’ll have to do it in the dark, and you want to prepare as much as possible for this.  You’ll be taking the stairs.  You should be able to estimate how long this will take you.  Speed is of the essence.

Workplace Gear

Now, what’s in your desk?  You will either want to have a small bag with you with some dried food, a small first-aid kit, and some essentials.  Maybe a couple bottles of water and a few canned meals (prepared meals are the best…focus on high protein and high carbs…you’ll be burning all of it off with the energy expended.)  There should be some room in the bag, because also, you’ll want to change (if you’re not already wearing them) into good boots/hiking shoes, and a good set of clothes instead of the Happy Western Consumer Clown Suit of tan pants, loafers, button-down shirt, ad infinitum, in all the ensemble’s color variances.  DX’em (that means get rid of them) …. you won’t need them anymore.  They’re not worth the weight to carry.

Move quickly and with a purpose: your mission to leave the building without incident and without fanfare.  Your vehicle?  If it doesn’t start, and its electronics have been “fried” by the pulse…then salvage that “go/bug-out” bag from the trunk, along with any weapons and equipment you packed.  Food and water, medical equipment, and prepositioned supplies…tote as much of it as you can.  This is where a large rucksack (or Alice pack) comes in handy, as it can take the weight, take a beating, and hold a ton of stuff.

For a long-gun, I strongly recommend a scabbard-sheath that will enable you to reach up and grab it, while keeping it sheathed.  You’ll be relying on your sidearm, hopefully, a semiautomatic pistol or a powerful revolver of some type.  Get your stuff, get it up on your back, and get out.

There will probably be vending machines in your building.  There won’t be electricity, even if you have coins or bills.  On the other hand, a backup power system may kick in.  You may wish to pick up as many dried/packaged goods as possible.  Just remember this: on the Day After Doomsday, there will be no more of those packaged goodies.

To paraphrase Jack London, the “law of club and fang” just emerged as the new norm for society.  As you leave the building, you need to have several points where you can rest or take refuge.  You should have already planned these out in advance, as well as the route you will be taking.  This route must also take into consideration any rally points for the family, points for resupply (food, water, and medical supplies), and places you may need to shelter in for more than a few days.

Success regarding this segment will completely depend on what you have planned for in advance and either stashed in your now-defunct vehicle or at work.  Good intel is the key to making it through this one.  You’ll have to consider sections of the city/town where you work you must “traverse” through, such as a “bad” area with gang or criminal activity, or such.  For those with the ’67 Mustang Convertible or the ’54 Ford pickup who have working vehicles, then refer to Part 1, and get out of that town as quickly as you can.  If you’re on foot, also refer to Part 1 for techniques, such as traveling when it’s dark, if possible, and things to look for/avoid on your way.  Stay in that good fight!  JJ out!

 

Additional EMP Reading:

A Green Beret’s Guide to EMP

Protect Your Vehicle From an EMP with this Simple Strategy

A Step-By-Step Guide to Preparing for Emergencies

Prepper Home Defense: 10 Ways to Create an Impenetrable Home Security after an EMP

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

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